The Jim Engster Show

  • Hosted by Publisher & Editor Jeremy Alford is in studio with Jim today to talk about the latest from around the state.  They discuss yesterday's announcement from Scott Angelle, the Louisiana Public Service Commissioner, that he's running for governor; the latest on former Louisiana DHH Secretary Bruce Greenstein who turned himself in yesterday following indictments on felony charges of perjury; and who's leading the polls thus far with the November 4th elections rapidly approaching. 

Andy Anderson, President of BF/Anderson Portfolio Management, drops into the studio to give us the latest updates and news from Wall Street. He's still preaching about the "Bull Market" we're in right now and cannot seem to stress enough how this market is offering a "window of opportunity to invest." He also gives the latest rundown on popular stocks and how they're selling. 

Also, award-winning children's author Katherine Paterson closes out the show with Jim to talk about her upcoming appearance at the Main Library on Goodwood October 10th where she's the featured speaker at the 37th Annual Author-Illustrator Program. Children, parents, teachers and the public are invited to hear Katherine tell her "story behind the story", and today she talks with Jim about growing up in China before and during World War II. Katherine is the author of over twenty books, including "National Book Award" winner The Great Gilly Hopkins, and Bridge to Terabithia. For more info on the Author-Illustrator Program visit the East Baton Rouge Parish Library website.

Highland Coffees owner Clarke Cadzow is our guest for the better part of today's show and he joins us in studio to discuss the recent news that he'll be closing his doors come December 24th. Located at the North Gates of LSU campus, Highland Coffees has been a staple for students, the community, out-of-town visitors and LSU professors for 25 years. Clarke discusses what happened in the latest lease negotiation contracts between him and the property owner, and what the future will hold for Highland Coffees.

Also, Al Vernacchio, author of For Goodness Sex joins us to promote his book and discuss the way we should be talking to teens about sexuality. His book proposes a progressive and 21st century approach to sex ed for parents and teens which promotes a healthy outlook upon sexuality.

Jim is back in the hosting chair today and he welcomes Music Director and Conductor of the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra Timothy Muffitt to be our lead off guest. Timothy's been the Conductor for the Baton Rouge Symphony since 1999, the Music Director and Conductor of the Lansing Symphony since 2006, and throughout his career has worked alongside the likes of Yo Yo Ma and Renee Fleming. He and Jim discuss upcoming events for October which include the Lamar Family Chamber Series "Festival of the Baroque" and invitational guest, violinist Yevgeny Kutik.

Dr. William Davis is our second guest today and he joins us to tell us why wheat is dangerous and unhealthy for you. In his latest book The Wheat Belly Guide to Total Health, Dr. Davis talks about how removing wheat from your diet is the most powerful strategy to have in taking control of your metabolism, weight and overall health. If you're worried about oatmeal, Wheaties and Italian food; Dr. Davis addresses these foods and more.

Also, MFA student at LSU Tim Moriarty joins us for the last few minutes today to discuss his role as Victor Frankenstein in the upcoming Swine Palace performances of Frankenstein. The shows will be held at the Shaver Theater and run October 3rd-12th, with a Pay-What-You-Can performance tonight at 7:30pm and a Sneak Preview performance tomorrow night at 7:30pm. Visit for more information.

Jim returns from his break tomorrow but while he's away Robert Travis Scott, the President of the Public Affairs Research Council, fills in as guest host for today's show. Joe Donchess, Executive Director of the Louisiana Nursing Home Association and Paul Salles, President and CEO of the Louisiana Hospital Association join Robert in studio for the first two segments this morning to discuss Amendments I & II on the upcoming ballot November 4th. What are they? Who will they affect? They answer these questions and more, as well as discuss the issues surrounding the amendments.

  • Amendment I: Do you support an amendment to authorize the legislature to create the Louisiana Medical Assistance Trust Fund, for the payment of Medicaid reimbursement to the health care provider groups paying fees into the fund?
  • Amendment II: Do you support an amendment to create the Hospital Stabilization Fund to stabilize and protect Medicaid reimbursements for health care services by depositing assessments paid by hospitals, as authorized by the legislature, into a fund to support Louisiana hospital reimbursement?

Also, Sports Columnist for The Advocate Scott Rabalais joins Robert for the last segment today to close out the show. He discusses with Robert what its like covering sporting events, facing deadlines, and what it feels like to teach a graduate level sports writing class at LSU. Scott also helps us learn "The Language of Les Miles," by telling us exactly what LSU Football coach Les Miles means when he says things like, "Look for more spread in the future." 

Jim Nickel is in the guest chair today while Jim Engster is away, and Nickel's brought with him three guests to help us cover politics, football and the recent advances in cancer prevention here in Baton Rouge.

Stuart Rothenberg of PBS and joins us for the first segment today to talk a little politics with Nickel. Stu and Nickel talk about the recent poll numbers and overall rating on President Obama so far in his sixth year in office, recent news concerning Louisiana politics, and more.

LSU Athletic Director Joe Alleva is with us for the second segment of today's show, and he and Nickel talk about the newly renovated Tiger Stadium. Food stands, restrooms, TV's and about 24,000 seats are just a few of the recent additions to Death Valley, and Alleva touts how these add-on's enhance the experience for fans on Saturday nights. They also discuss the long-time hot debate topic of whether or not college athletes should be paid; the new SEC Network; and much, much more.

Also, Dr. Gerald Miletello joins us for the last segment to close out today's show. Dr. Miletello is Hematology Oncologist at Baton Rouge General and he and Nickel discuss the recent advances of the IL-2 Cancer Treatment Program at BR General. Other than Houston, Baton Rouge is the only city in a five state area that administers the use of the IL-2 Program, and Dr. Miletello discusses the success he's had so far in battling cancer.

Elaine LaLanne joins us today to remember her late husband, fitness legend Jack LaLanne. A pioneer in the world of health & fitness, Jack took his message of healthy living and exercise to the homes of millions of Americans each week on television for over three decades. Even into his late 90's, Jack was still advocating a healthier way to live, eat, and stay active. He would have turned 100 years old today, and Elaine reminisces on the good times she had with Jack over the 50+ years they were married.

Also, LSU Oceanographer Professor Dr. James H. Cowan, Jr. joins us to discuss his opinion on the current state of the Dead Zone in the Gulf of Mexico. On August 18th, Dr. Nancy Rabalais, Dr. Cathy Kling, and Dr. Eugene Turner were on the show discussing the topic, and Dr. Cowan is here today to disagree with some of what they said.

Author April Smith joins us for the last segment today to close out the show and promote her latest book, the WWI based historical fiction novel A Star for Mrs. Blake. The book tells the story of five American women, Gold Star Mothers, who voyage across the Atlantic to visit the graves of their sons who died in battle during The Great War. Before boarding the ship, the women meet for the first time and over the course of their journey their lives are changed forever.

Also, News Reporter for LRN Michelle Southern joins us for a few quick minutes between guests to discuss an "accident" that happened yesterday while she was interviewing Louisiana State Senator J.P. Morrell over the phone.

Retired Air Force Colonel and U.S. Senate Candidate Rob Maness takes a break from the campaign trail to join us as our first guest on today's show. Running as a Tea Party conservative on the GOP ticket, Maness is up against incumbent U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu (D) and U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy (R) who've been the two headlining candidates and poll leaders for quite some time, but he says he feels confident. He tells Jim that he feels he's the only true conservative running to represent Louisiana as U.S. Senator, and he states his opinions on President Obama, recent military actions against ISIS, border security, and U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu's involvement in a keg stand this past Saturday at an LSU tailgate, as well as much, much more.

Contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine and columnist for Wired, Clive Thompson is in studio today as our second guest to promote his new book Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing Our Minds for the Better. He'll be at the Baton Rouge Main Library on Goodwood this Friday September 26th to kick off the Library's first After Hours Event. The event is free for the public and Clive will discuss his book and answer questions from guests. Festivities begin at 6pm.

Baton Rouge native and author of the New York Times Bestselling book The Most Dangerous Animal of All: Searching for my Father...and Finding the Zodiac Killer Gary Stewart is our third guest today, and he's here to talk with Jim about his upcoming appearance on LSU's campus. This Saturday September 27th at 1pm, Gary and co-author Susan D. Mustafa will be at the Barnes & Noble store on LSU's campus before the LSU football game to sign copies of their book and talk with students.

Also, Douglas Kennedy the Communications Coordinator for the Louisiana Arts & Sciences Museum closes out today's show to discuss the latest happenings at the museum downtown and exciting upcoming exhibits, like the Party at the Pyramid Gala October 3rd and the current Ancient Egyptian Tapestries collection running through October 12th.

It's been a few weeks since we've last heard from him, but Gus is back to start out today's show. Famed Louisiana political consultant, author, and mentor to James Carville, Gus Weill joins us to share his opinion on the latest happenings around the state. He and Jim talk about the latest news concerning former DHH Secretary Bruce Greenstein being indicted by a grand jury on charges of perjury, the LSU football team losing to Miss State on Saturday, Bill Cassidy's latest endorsement announcement, the upcoming November 3rd elections, and much, much more.

Democratic State Representative and candidate for Governor in 2015 John Bel Edwards is our second guest today, and he talks with Jim about what he feels are illegal Office of Group Benefits plan changes. He talks with Jim about his firm belief that when Governor Bobby Jindal's administration made changes to insurance health plans offered by the OGB, they were not following the Administrative Procedures Act and therefore not following the law. 

Also, attorney, jazz musician, and local author Michael H. Rubin closes out today's show to promote and discuss his latest work of fiction, The Cottoncrest Curse. Published by LSU Press earlier this month, Rubin's mystery-thriller centers around the double murder of a Colonel and his wife on a southern plantation two decades after the Civil War, and follows accused Jewish immigrant Jake Gold as he tries to clear his name and prove his innocence.

U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu joins us in studio this morning as the day's first guest to talk with Jim about her bid for a fourth term in the Senate. She discusses how she feels confident in running against U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy, citing "experience" as the key difference between the them. When asked about what she thinks concerning Rep. Bill Cassidy running a seemingly quiet campaign so far, Landrieu said, "If I had a record like his, I might hide too." She expresses her support of American military campaigns against ISIS, laughs about Republican attacks on her official residency status, discusses her stance on corporation rights (believing that they are not entitled to equal speech), and talks about her experience on Saturday at the LSU football game where she was photographed helping a student do a keg stand. She's closes out her discussion with Jim by predicting a victory over Rep. Bill Cassidy come November 3rd.

Also, Author David Rose joins us over the phone to end today's show and promote his latest book "Enchanted Objects." David is a media lab scientist at MIT, and in his book he shows us a future world with technology embedded within almost every single everyday item you can think of, i.e.: salt shakers with cameras that photograph your food to keep watch of your diet, umbrellas that will tell you when it's going to rain, and much more. He's already been a part of a team with Amazon that's created a prototype garbage can that can order food.

Mark Whitaker is our first guest of the week and he joins Jim to promote and discuss his biography of comedian Bill Cosby, Cosby: His Life and Times. Starting in Philadelphia where he grew up with near-absent parents, Whitaker's work reveals how Cosby joined the Navy after dropping out of high school, talked his way into college, and finally decided to give comedy a shot. The rest is "history" as the saying goes, but Whitaker's biography shows us that Cosby's life of fame and celebrity was not an easy road to take as most people think. Comedian Billy Crystal says, "Cosby always makes things look so easy. This compelling book tells us it wasn't always so. A revealing, honest look at my favorite comedian."

Jeff Palermo, sports commentator for 104.5 FM and news director for LRN, joins Jim in studio as today's second guest to discuss and help break down exactly what happened to the LSU football team in Saturday's loss at home to the Mississippi State Bulldogs. Despite a valiant fourth quarter comeback effort, the final score Saturday was Miss. State 34 LSU 29.

Also, Libertarian candidate Rufus Craig is running again for Louisiana's 6th Congressional District and he's in studio with Jim today to discuss his candidacy. Rufus, who's not a stranger to running for office, talks with Jim about his failed bid for Congress in 2012 in which he lost out to Rep. Bill Cassidy, and how he hopes to change the result this year come election day November 3rd.