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Huckleberries Online

Wild Card/Tuesday — 9.30.14

I received my annual flu shot this morning. I always get them, sometimes later than earlier. I generally get through the winter without flu or even a bad cold, on flu shot years. Knock on wood. Am I the first in the Huckleberries Online crowd to get a flu shot this year? Do you get them, too? You can answer that question — or start your own thread with this Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 9.30.14

Sandy Morden holds her granddaughter, Camryn Thrushman, 2, as they blow a steam whistle together during the Whistles on the Water event at Palmer Park in St. Clair, Mich. (AP Photo/The Port Huron Times Herald, Jeffrey M. Smith)

Most Commented Stories — 9.30.14

The stories that attracted the most comments today are: Gun racks make liberals nervous (15 comments), and: California bans plastic grocery bags (9 comments), and: Crane 'joke' leaves 'em confused (8 comments).

Top Comment Today — JPinkman

JPinkman (RE: California bans plastic grocery bags): It's not so much the ban on plastic bags but being allowed to charge for a paper bag? This is a scary slippery slope we are entering. Charges for checked bags on planes, attempted charges for carry on luggage. This crap needs to stop. What next, a charge for wearing a coat on board or perhaps having underwear on under our clothing? Seriously, we need to rise up against this stupidity. Yes bring re-useable bags with you. Great idea. Except what if you do not bring enough of these because of a meat sale? I for one would leave it all in the cart if the store attempted to extort $0.10 from me for an extra bag. Ridiculous!

Cutline Contest — 9.30.14

Time 2 Vote …

Facts: Organizer Jonathan Ferrara oversees the installation of the upcoming “Guns in the Hands of Artists” show at his gallery in New Orleans. You write the cutline. (AP photo)

Monday Winner — Lost in Boise, with 11 likes: “My Mom can whip your Dad!” You can see Monday photo and all Cutline Contest entries here.

Politico: Otter-Balukoff Race In Play

Politico, a national political news magazine and web site says the Idaho race for governor is in play. Polls have shown Gov. Butch Otter up earlier this month by as much as 18 points over Boise businessman and philanthropist A.J. Balukoff. But Balukoff has spent heavily on television and digital advertising and Politico reporter James Hohmann said Otter is one of two incumbent Republicans who are most vulnerable. Hohmann said the reason is the tough budget decisions Otter, running for a third term has made. After eight years of leading the state through the deepest recession since the Great Depression, Otter has disappointed many Idahoans on the right and the center with decisions he has made - from education cuts to pushing through a state health exchange/Rocky Barker, Statesman. More here.

Question: Are you surprised that two-term Gov. Otter has been unable to shake off Balukoff challenge?

PM Scanner Traffic — 9.30.14

  • 4:57 p.m. 4YO hurt in bicycle accident @ 1600 block of Quail Run Blvd/Post Falls.
  • 4:51 p.m. Someone in 2200 block of Spokane Street/Post Falls wants ride to ER.
  • 4:38 p.m. Deputy reports vehicle on top 20 feet down embankment, unknown location.
  • 4:22 p.m. Coeur d'Alene Police Department activities report for Sept. 29-30 here.
  • 4:17 p.m. Motorcycle rider lying on ground @ w/b I-90/MP 2 (Pleasantview/Post Falls).
  • 4:14 p.m. Post Falls Police Department activities report for Sept. 29-30 here.
  • 3:47 p.m. Irrigation sprinker is hitting road @ H41/Hayden Avenue, Rathdrum Prairie.
  • 3:40 p.m. Trailer snapped off mount & swerved around to hit vehicle, knocking it in ditch, unknown location.
  • 3:08 p.m. Driver of silver Honda possibly DUI, from Seltice Way to Spokane to Railroad Avenue/Post Falls.
  • 2:40 p.m. Broken pallet is lying on freeway @ w/b I-90/MP 17 (Mullan Trail underpass).
  • 2:34 p.m. Northern Lake Fire EMTs en route to help citizen @ 11400 block of Trafalgar/Hayden, unknown reason.
  • 2:13 p.m. PFPD officer has contacted confused 70-80s male, 5-7/120 lbs & wants to know if he's reported missing.
  • 2:10 p.m. @CDAgov tweet: “Sherman Avenue closed Friday 1:30-5 pm b/n 11th St. & Independence Point for CHS and LCHS hold homecoming parades.
  • 1:49 p.m. Female driver of red van @ w/b I-90/MP 22 (H97 interchange) possibly DUI.
  • 1:26 p.m. A boat has fallen off a trailer @ w/b H53/Pleasantview, blocking w/b lane. Hauser Fire on scene.
  • AM Scanner Traffic

PM Headlines — 9.29.14

Shadle Park's Brett Rypien, left, and Coeur d'Alene's Drew Berger for the cover of the 2014 SR Prep football special section. Rypien, who lost to the CHS Viks this season, has announced that he will play for Boise State after he graduates. See story below. (SR file photo: Colin Mulvany)

Craig Ordered To Pay Nearly $242K

Former U.S. Sen. Larry Craig has been ordered to pay nearly $242,000 to the U.S. Treasury for improperly using campaign funds to cover legal expenses incurred after his arrest in a 2007 airport bathroom sex sting. U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson ruled Tuesday in Washington, D.C. that Craig illegally converted campaign money as personal expenses while attempting to withdraw his guilty plea to one count of disorderly conduct. Jackson found that Craig’s effort was personal and not connected to his duties representing Idahoans in Congress. Craig, meanwhile, argued that Senate rules allow reimbursements for any official travel costs. He says he was traveling between Idaho and Washington D.C. for work/Associated Press. More here. (AP file photo, of Larry Craig)

Question: Justice accomplished?

Survey: Idaho 12th Best For Teachers

In his Topic Tuesday video discussion, Idaho Gov. Butch Otter discusses the purpose of his Education Task Force.

A new survey finds Idaho to be the 12th best state for teachers. WalletHub analyzed the 50 states and the District of Columbia utilizing 18 metrics including median starting salaries and annual salaries for teachers, job openings per capita and the number of elementary and secondary schools per capita. “I appreciate the results of this survey because I want our teachers to know we value them. That being said, I want Idaho to be an even better state for teachers. That’s why I put together the Task force for Improving Education with the goal of removing the politics and angst from the conversation in order to get to the heart of what is right for Idaho students, teachers and our communities. The task force developed a five-year, $350 million plan with 20 recommendations that I support”/Otter for Idaho news release. More here.

Question: Are you surprised by the WalletHub analysis that Idaho is the 12th best state for teachers?

KCSO: Home Burglars Target Guns

During the past month of September, Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office has taken six residential burglaries with numerous firearms stolen. All but one of the burglaries was a forced entry into the home, with the weapons being taken from a bedroom. Only half of the reported firearms listed on the crime reports were listed with their serial numbers. Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office is asking the public to please do the following:

  • Keep your homes locked and secured when not at home.
  • Place firearms in a secure and locked location if possible.
  • Make a list of your property (including firearms) listing all the serial numbers. For jewelry and other type items, photograph the items placing the photographs onto a CD. Make two copies of your list and CD, securing them in two different locations. Doing this will greatly increase the chances of your property being returned to you if stolen.
  • Report any suspicious activity in your neighborhood to your local law enforcement agency. More here.


Roetter Debunks Sandy Hook Theory

Believe it or not, there are people out there who don't believe the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre actually took place. The deniers say that the shooting never occured and that we’ve been told a cover story for an elaborately staged government hoax. One of those who raised questions about the massacre is an individual who used AP photos of bullet holes in school glass as his basis. Wealthy entrepreneur George Mason told the Newton Post-Register that the glass pictured in crime scene photographs was not “correct glass for a school or public building.” Which brings in Matt Roetter, of Hayden, “the nation’s leading forensic expert on the analysis of fenestration components, such as doors and windows, and has been retained on more class-action cases than any other fenestration expert witness or consultant in the country.” You can read what Matt said about Mason's theory here.

Question: Are you amazed that anyone would question the veracity of the Sandy Hook massacre?

HucksOnline Blogosphere — 9.30.14

In The Slice blog, Paul Turner wonders if anyone remembers Larry Scott, “the skinny kid from Idaho”? More here.

HucksOnline numbers (for Monday, Sept. 29): 6302 page-views/3983 unique views

Dairy-Free Huckleberry Coconut Cake

Huckleberries are sometimes referred to as mountain blueberries. In North Idaho, they are also known as purple gold. There was a bumper crop this year and we we did really well, stocking our freezer with a haul that should easily last us until next year’s crop comes on. This Dairy-Free and Lemon-Glazed Huckleberry Coconut Cake perfectly plays the tartness of the lemon and huckleberries against the sweetness of coconut in an incredibly moist cake. If you don’t have huckleberries on hand, substitute blueberries. Either way, it’s a winner/Allergy Reporter. More here.

Question: It almost makes you want to give up dairy, doesn't it?


UO Drops Nude Art Class, Draws Fire

Jud Turner covers his heron sculpture near the University of Oregon campus in Eugene, Ore., Monday with a knitted fig leaf in protest over the canceling of figure drawing class at the university. The School of Architecture and Allied Arts' art department has taken a lot of heat since deciding last week to cancel the free three-hour sessions. The department cited concerns about safety for the nude models, and a lack of funding to keep the sessions going. Story here. (AP Photo/The Register-Guard, Chris Pietsch)

Question: Should this class be part of the offerings of a major university like UO?

Work To Start On One Lakeside Tower

Work will begin this fall on Coeur d’Alene’s newest midrise, One Lakeside, a 64-unit luxury apartment building with prime views of Lake Coeur d’Alene. Austin Lawrence Partners, a development firm in Aspen, Colorado, will erect the 15-story tower at North First Street and East Lakeside Avenue, near Independence Point and City Park. “We expect to complete the project the summer of 2016,” Greg Hills, a principal with the firm, said. The $20 million project is at the site of a 60-year-old apartment building that will be torn down. The new, 125,000-square-foot building will have three levels of parking, 11 levels of residential units and a rooftop club level with outdoor pool/Scott Maben, The Dirt blog. More here.

Question: Are you ready for another downtown Coeur d'Alene high rise?

Nesse Wants Your Vote

Huckleberries published a flyer by state Rep. Kathy Sims, R-Coeur d'Alene, last week. So it's only fair to publish one by her Democratic opponent Anne Nesse, a leader in the crusade to increase Idaho's minimum wage from a paltry $7.25. On the back of the card, Nesse has printed: “On the back of card: I will work full time to solve problems. Sims does not work to solve problems.”

Question: Sims or Nesse?

Happy Birthday, Lewiston Tribune

First issue (of the Lewiston Tribune) printed Sept. 30, 1892, under leadership of Alford family — Kerri Sandaine tweet.

DFO: I spent the best two years of my newspaper career in the newsroom of the Lewiston Tribune, rubbing shoulders with terrific Idaho journalists like Paul Emerson, Bill Hall, Ladd Hamilton, Jim Fisher, David Johnson and so many others. I consider Publisher Butch Alford to be the patron saint of all heart-weary journalists who entered the profession full of idealism, only to be discouraged by the commercial reality of newspapers that put advertising ahead of content. Butch & the Trib restored my faith in this profession in the two years (1982-84) that I worked in Lewiston. I'm glad I joined the SR and have spent the last 30 years in Coeur d'Alene. But it was so hard to leave Lewiston. The Trib is an oasis in the middle of a desert of under-performing newspapers. It will continue to be as long as an Alford is running the show.


California Bans Plastic Grocery Bags

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday signed the nation’s first statewide ban on single-use plastic bags at grocery and convenience stores, driven to action by pollution in streets and waterways. A national coalition of plastic bag manufacturers immediately said it would seek a voter referendum to repeal the law, which is scheduled to take effect in July 2015. Under SB270, plastic bags will be phased out of checkout counters at large grocery stores and supermarkets such as Wal-Mart and Target starting next summer, and convenience stores and pharmacies in 2016. The law does not apply to bags used for fruits, vegetables or meats, or to shopping bags used at other retailers. It allows grocers to charge a fee of at least 10 cents for using paper bags/Associated Press. More here. (AP file photo for illustrative purposes: Customers carry goods in plastic bags)

Question: Paper? Or plastic?

26 Minutes To Answer Simple Query Edit

A long-time blurker called to object to the run-around she received when she called Waste Management to ask about the difference in cost for a bigger garbage can. She was bounced around to two different states and four transfers before getting the information 26 minutes later — a few bucks. She was miffed that someone beyond the Coeur d'Alene area has the job of answering her question about such a routine matter when jobs are needed here — not in Texas or Arizona, where she was transferred. “Every job we get here is precious,” she told Huckleberries Online. Now, she wonders whether she'll save herself the convenience of paying for a bigger garbage can. She may simply continue to go to the Ramsey Road transfer station in protest. (PRNews photo/Tropicana)

Question: Have you tried to contact a company that operates locally but has phone contact in another state?

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About this blog

D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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