Brad Harrison anxiously stares downward some 25 feet to the shallow water of Lake Coeur d'Alene below, catching his breath and gathering the courage and focus necessary to make his next jump a success. And even though he’s made this leap of faith many, many times, he never rushes it. He knows that one slip, one brief lapse in concentration, will lead to disaster – or worse yet, death. Watch a video montage of people jumping from the rocks at Tubbs Hill in Coeur d'Alene: http://www.spokesman.com/video/2014/aug/13/jumping-rocks/ Story & SR photos by Jesse Tinsley here.
HucksOnline numbers (for Wednesday, Aug. 20): 7027 page-views/4366 unique views
I didn't plant my tomatoes/squash/cucumbers/basil, etc., until I returned from a California vacay in June. Yet, I'm harvesting a bumper crop now. Tomatoes galore. Ditto for cucumbers. I may need to make pesto this weekend. The garden harvest adds spice — literally — to the dog days of summer. Now for today's Wild Card …
(Political cartoon provided by campaign of Nels Mitchell for U.S. Senate)
In a news release, Democrat Nels Mitchell, a candidate for the U.S. Senate, writes: “It is fascinating to watch my opponent, Sen. Jim Risch, attempt to airbrush his record, or as some have observed, mislead voters about his record on the Idaho National Laboratory, one of Idaho’s largest employers. Last January, Risch voted against funding the INL when he voted against the budget bill. And, a few months before that, he was one of the Senators that shut down the government for 16 days. A move that resulted in INL furloughs and which ultimately cost taxpayers more than $24 Billion. No one in Idaho can question the importance of the INL. Its workforce has more than 6000 government and contractor workers. A BSU study found that the INL creates more than 24,000 Idaho jobs.” More here.
On her “War Bonds” Facebook page, Cindy posts: Each chapter of War Bonds features a song title from the WWII era. Some of these titles are a hoot! For instance: “Stalin Wasn't Stallin,” “The Frim-Fram Sauce,” “The Honeydripper,” “Who Threw the Whiskey in the Well,” “Just Squeeze Me (But Please Don't Tease Me),” “King Size Papa” and “I'm Throwing Rice (At The Girl That I Love)!”
Question: Can you remember silly song titles from your g-g-generation?
The Pentagon broke the law when it swapped Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, a prisoner in Afghanistan for five years, for five Taliban leaders, according to a GAO report submitted to Congress today, the AP reports. The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office said the Defense Department failed to notify the relevant congressional committees at least 30 days in advance of the exchange — a clear violation of the law — and used $988,400 of a wartime account to make the transfer. The GAO said the Pentagon's use of funds that hadn't been expressly appropriated violated the Anti-deficiency Act/Betsy Russell, Eye on Boise. More here.
Question: Are you bothered that the Bergdahl swap broke the law?
Jana Jones, the Democratic Party candidate for Idaho Superintendent of Public Instruction, said the winner of November's general election won't have time to learn on the job. “We need to get right back on track and start moving forward again,” Jones said Tuesday in an interview with The Press. Jones, who ran and lost to current Idaho Superintendent Tom Luna in 2006, said she has the experience to jump right in and get to work. She has an educational doctorate in educational leadership, and bachelor's and master's degrees in special education. Jones was a classroom teacher in Idaho Falls. She founded and operated Progressive Day School, one of the first early childhood centers in the state to include children with special needs/David Cole, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.
Question: Have you made your mind up RE: who gets your vote in race for state superintendent of schools?
The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB/Idaho), comprised of over 4,500 small businesses throughout the state, has endorsed Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter in his re-election campaign for Governor. In the organization’s endorsement, NFIB/Idaho praised Governor Otter for his stewardship of the state through one of the toughest economic times in the nation’s history. “True to his word, Governor Otter held the line on taxes and spending during the most difficult economy in many decades,” said Suzanne Budge, Idaho state director of NFIB. “In the face of strong criticism, especially from the education establishments, he refused to raise taxes and forced government to live within its means. As a result of his steadfastness, Idaho is better positioned to reap a bigger harvest from an improving economy”/Kaycee Emery, Otter4Idaho. More here.
Question: Do you agree/disagree with this endorsement?
I can't think of a good poll question for today. Anyone out there have one?
Tina Kunishige, near where Arfee was shot by a police officer, is one of many still upset with how Coeur d'Alene has handled the tragedy. She is now one of the leading members involved in the Justice for ARFEE Facebook page. (Inlander Photo: Young Kwak)
Craig Jones makes the entire drive — from a downtown Coeur d'Alene coffee shop to his father's barn in Hayden — like this: sitting in his dog's blood and broken glass, a hole in the van window beside him from the bullet that killed Arfee. “[The van] still smells like him to this day,” Jones says. On July 9, a Coeur d'Alene police officer responding to a report of a suspicious van shot Arfee, Jones' 2-year-old black Labrador, in the parking lot of Java on Sherman. Nearly six weeks later, Jones is still reeling. He and Arfee had slept on the same pillow. Arfee was his constant companion on wallpapering jobs and dirt-bike expeditions, a source of joy after Jones' separation from his wife and the death of his mother. Now Jones keeps thinking about the trail of blood in his van, picturing Arfee dragging himself wounded to the back, confused why he had been shot/Daniel Walters, Inlander. More here.
Dirt bikers ride off-road on Mica Peak private property clearly posted with no trespassing signs seen on the tree near the center of this photo. (Outdoors blog photo: Rich Landers)
SR buddy Rich Landers had a close encounter with an off-road-vehicle fan who rides in the Mica Peak area, for daring to criticize ORVers for trashing private property. Rich begins: “I recently received an email from a gutless reader dissing me for a column I wrote about ORVer's who ride on private property — notably Mica Peak — without permission, as well as on public lands where riding off designated roads is illegal. I call the person 'gutless' because he/she has taken the liberty to call me a moron without having the courage to identify himself/herself more specifically than 'Dusty.' You can read exchange of emails here.
Question: Have you witnessed ORVers ignoring no-trespassing signs or misbehaving in other ways in the backcountry?
An Iraqi native, who escaped persecution and now lives in Coeur d'Alene, is working to bring attention to the dire humanitarian situation in his home country. When Michael Paul found out about recently slain journalist Jim Foley, he cried. “I really cried today to God. I mean what a hero he is. He was arrested in Libya and he went to Syria again and he didn't care,” says Paul. Paul grew up a Muslim in Iraq before converting to Christianity at the age of 18. He assisted the U.S. military as a cultural adviser and interpreter and was kidnapped multiple times by different groups for his beliefs. People in Iraq today, they don't have social justice,” says Paul. Now he is on a mission: to convert Arabs from Islam to Christianity. “The real source of extremism in the world and the unrest situation is the teaching of the Koran,” says Paul/Alex LaFriec, KXLY. More here. (Coeur d'Alene Press File Photo, of Michael Paul)
An unnamed man takes a selfie with Gov. Butch Otter after the monument dedication ceremony recognizing the 150th anniversary of Kootenai County. Duane Rasmussen was on hand to snap this photo and several more of the North Idaho Fair that you'll see sprinkled throughout today's Huckleberries Online report.
President Barack Obama, right, smiles as he and former NBA basketball player Alonzo Mourning, left, prepare to ride in a golf cart while golfing at Vineyard Golf Club in Edgartown, Mass., on the island of Martha's Vineyard, Wednesday. Obama is taking a two-week summer vacation on the island. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Wednesday Winner — KeithinCDA with 11 likes: And when his boyhood dream came true, he played in the majors and became known for pigeon his heart out. You can see Wednesday Photo and all Cutline Contest entries here.
Fewer Idahoans, nearly 6 percent, are working today than in 2007 before the Great Recession began. State-by-state analysis of employment data, from calendar year 2007 to fiscal year 2014, show only two other states have seen a greater workforce decline among 25- to 54-year-olds. “In 2007, before the recession 83 percent of people between 25 and 54 in Idaho, were employed,” says Pew director of economic health Jeff Chapman. “And in the most recent 12 months for which we have data, through June 2014, only 77.3 percent of people in that age group in Idaho were working”/Emilie Ritter Saunders, Boise State Public Radio. More here.
Question: Is this a result of the Great Recession or politics?
The latest Reason-Rupe poll finds that when it comes to kids and their trophies, 57 percent of Americans think only the winning players should receive them. Another 40 percent say all kids on a sport team should receive a trophy for their participation. The desire for “every kid to get a trophy” strongly correlates with political beliefs. Fully 66 percent of Republicans want only the kids who win to receive trophies, while 31 percent say all kids on the team should receive them. In contrast, Democrats are evenly divided with 48 percent who say all kids, and another 48 percent who say only the winners should receive a trophy/Reason.com. More here.
Question: Do you agree with the poll results — that only the winners in children's sports should get trophies?
The Coeur d'Alene City Council voted 4-1 to amend its fiscal year 2014 budget to account for $5.3 million in unanticipated costs. Deputy Finance Director Vonnie Jensen explained that a majority of the $5.3 million cost overrun was due to construction of McEuen Park, Front Avenue and the city's wastewater treatment plant. There was also a general fund transfer of $600,000 to cover a deficiency in the city's self-insurance fund. After clarifying some issues he had with the construction carryovers, Councilman Dan Gookin made the motion to pass a resolution setting a public hearing on the budget amendment for 6 p.m., Sept. 16, in the community room of the Coeur d'Alene Public Library. Councilman Steve Adams voted no on the amendment, but did not comment on his vote/Coeur d'Alene Press.
Question: Should Adams have explained his reason for voting no on an important but routine motion like this?