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Resolutions for all: An editorial

If you're into self-improvement -- or think you should be -- you've probably got at least a short list of New Year's resolutions ready.

Trim down. Tone up.

Be kinder. Be tougher.

Cook more. Eat out more.

Save. Splurge.

Take a class. Take a trip. Or just relax.

You know what you need to do to make your life better in 2011. So, you have to decide what goes on your list and what doesn't.

But the famous -- and infamous -- put themselves out there for all the world to see. And since they've invited us all into their lives, we have a few suggestions for them for the new year:

With that in mind, here's our annual list of New Year's resolutions for public officials and personalities.

I, Gov. Bobby Jindal, resolve to spend more time in the great state of Louisiana. There's important work to be done here at home.

We, the Louisiana Legislature, pledge not to get distracted by divisive social issues and outlandish fiscal policies. We had this on our list last year but failed miserably, so we're going to try again.

We also resolve to find ways to cut out the duplication in higher education instead of squeezing the life out of every school.

I, Mayor Mitch Landrieu, resolve to make New Orleans a model of efficiency and innovation. I also promise to continue to undo the bad deals my predecessor stuck residents with. "You've gotta be kidding me," Ray.

We, the New Orleans City Council, promise to work together and with the mayor to maximize every dollar the city spends.

We, the top executives at BP, resolve to fulfill our promise to "make things right" along the Gulf Coast. We pledge to start by owning up to the damage our oil spill did to South Louisiana and the region.

I, Tony Hayward, resolve to give up my self-absorbed whining about what the BP oil spill did to my life.

We, President Barack Obama and the 535 members of Congress, pledge to make sure that most of BP's fines go to restoring our coast.

We, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, resolve to stop stalling safe oil production in the Gulf.

I, Kenneth Feinberg, promise to make sure that fishers, shrimpers and oyster harvesters don't get shut out by the oil spill claims process and to make the process more transparent.

We, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, pledge to finish 100-year storm protection this year, as promised. We also resolve to make sure the levees have real armoring to keep them from eroding.

We, U.S. Attorney Jim Letten and the FBI, pledge to continue our relentless pursuit of public corruption cases.

I, New Orleans Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas, promise to do everything possible to rid my department of rogue officers. I will show no tolerance for cheaters.

We, the new members of the Jefferson Parish School Board, promise to put students first and not to meddle where we don't belong. I, Gene Katsanis, resolve to go quietly into retirement from the School Board.

I, Jefferson Parish President John Young, pledge to work every day -- as I said on election night -- to change "the way we do business" in parish government. And I will continue to undo the scandalous practices of my predecessor.

We, the Jefferson Parish Council, resolve to be truly open with the public about campaign contributors seeking contracts with the parish.

We, the New Orleans Saints, promise to beat Tampa Bay Sunday. We also resolve to do everything in our power to get back to the Super Bowl. Two Dat! Repeat Dat!

We, the members of the Who Dat Nation, promise to be sure the Dome is always the loudest stadium in the NFL.

I, Falcons receiver Roddy White, resolve to think before I tweet and to give the Saints their due as reigning Super Bowl champions.

I, Fox Sports reporter Chris Myers, resolve to leave disaster analysis to someone who actually understands what happened during and after Hurricane Katrina.

We, the misguided people who try to use Katrina to explain anything but Katrina, promise to stop.

We, the Mandeville city government, the St. John the Baptist Parish Housing Authority, the Public Belt Railroad, the Slidell Housing Authority and other public agencies, resolve to cut up all our credit cards. It is clear that we don't know how to use them responsibly.

I, Erroll Williams, resolve to make the consolidated Orleans Parish assessor office a model of efficiency and fairness, as reform-minded voters demanded. I pledge to end inequities across the city and produce fair and accurate assessments.

I, St. Tammany Assessor Patricia Schwarz Core, pledge to check to make sure that land being claimed on taxes as timberland hasn't turned into someone's woodland estate.

We, the Metropolitan Crime Commission, the Bureau of Governmental Research, Citizens for 1 Greater New Orleans, Levees.org, Women of the Storm, Court Watch NOLA, Beacon of Hope, the St. Bernard Project and other citizen groups, pledge to continue to look out for the public good and hold elected officials accountable.

We, any and all candidates for office this year, resolve not to litter the landscape with campaign signs. And to pick any stray signs up immediately after election day.

I, Chris Paul, resolve to be happy where I am.

We, the New Orleans Hornets, promise to get back to the stifling defense that gave us such a strong start this season.

We, the fans, promise to pack the Hive and do our part to keep our team in place.

We, all of the residents of South Louisiana, resolve to keep working to rebuild our neighborhoods, to make our communities better than ever, to never let anything erode our sense of fun, to mask for Carnival, to dance every chance we get and to treasure the Lombardi Trophy.

As if we'd ever stop doing that.

And if the Saints get to the Super Bowl again, we'll all try to be in that number. And if they win in Dallas, we can promise you this, the celebration will still be going on this time next year.



September 2006