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Huckleberries Online

Archive for June 2005

Wild Card — 6/30/05

The vacation continues with household chores and an evening with the “Guys And Dolls” at the Coeur d’Alene Summer Theater tonight. Thanks for checking in. Here’s another Wild Card …

Local Question — 6/30/05

Issue: By the numbers, Spokane’s still No. 2: City tops Tacoma again in population, but Valley could lose eighth place spot to Kent/Richard Roesler, SR.

DFO: I used to enjoy seeing growth in our area edging us closer to the population leaders, in Idaho and Washington state. More people meant more clout in state government. But the steady growth has become a torrent in Bonner and Kootenai counties. So, I don’t get excited about the new population figures any more.

Question: Is the genie out of the bottle? Will it ever slow down around here, populationwise?

Wild Card — Wednesday 6/29/05

I took Cis’ advice tonight re: walking with my Sweetie under the moonlight along the shore. Sometimes, I forget how beautiful the lake and the downtown lights are. Whatta wonderful place to live. The time off has been good. Already, my batteries are beginning to charge. In a day or two, I’ll turn my attention to ways to improve the blog. But not now. Meanwhile, I’ve been reading through your comments and enjoying them. I definitely consider myself fortunate to have such high-calibre folks commenting here. And speaking of commenting … here’s another Wild Card …

Dave? Dave’s not here

Thought I’d drop in for a quick visit in Dave’s absence. I’ve got movie tickets to give away for showings of “Land of the Dead” and “Madagascar” at the new Riverstone Stadium 14. I figure diehard Huckleberries fans ought to be first in line for the freebies.

Send me an email if you’d like a pass good for two to see either of the movies. (The Madagascar pass is good any time. The Land of the Dead pass is good Monday through Thursday only.) First-come, first-served.

Best of Huckleberries Online — 6/20-24/2005

Brad Duke, the winner of the $220.3 million Powerball lottery jackpot plans to invest the money and become a billionaire. But that won’t help Brad Duke of St. Maries. See below.

The tickets to the $50 Regal Cinemas Riverstone grand opening gala/fundraiser specified “semi-formal attire.” And tuxedoed Riverstone developer John Stone complied. But he declared himself out-dressed by NIC AD Al Williams, who wore an impeccable linen suit and colorful silk tie. Other fashions ranged from sequins and backless dresses to tie-dye and clogs. One woman said she was baffled by “semi-formal” in a North Idaho context. It was apparent. She wore a skirt and black halter top. Her husband wore dressy shorts. Beats jeans with holes in the knees and cowboy boots – semi-formal attire in much of North Idaho.

Broom Hilda
A Coeur d’Alene hygienist, who’ll remain nameless, called her 22-year-old son in Spokane as that windstorm blew in Tuesday. She wanted to be sure that he didn’t expose himself to lightning by going outside. Twenty minutes later, Sonny called back: “Mom, it’s storming here really hard, and it’s headed your way. I want you to promise me that you won’t go out on your broom tonight.” She should turn him into a toad … It’s great to be Brad Duke if you’re 33, physically fit in Boise, and worth multimillions after winning the $220 million Powerball lottery. It’s not so great if you’re construction worker Brad Duke, 44, of St. Maries and tired of answering the phone at all hours to explain to the media and investors why you don’t want to be bothered … The Seattle Post-Intelligencer boasted troop morale – the enemy’s – with that idiotorial Friday: “Iraq Occupation: This war can’t be won” … The Seattle Post-Intelligencer boosted troop morale – the enemy’s – with that idiotorial Friday: “Iraq Occupation: This war can’t be won.”

No Southern Gent Here
Oopsy? Kootenai County Prosecutor Bill Douglas sez he’s never been to South Carolina or attended a law seminar there. So, attorney Suzy Graham was wrong, he sez, when she asked for a case continuance because she thought Douglas was Down South. But that doesn’t negate the great comeback from Judge Gene Marano: “I hope he’s learning something about privacy laws” – a reference to Douglas’ fight to keep courthouse e-mails to/from ex-juvie court queen Marina Kalani out of public hands … Quotable Quote: “The only men we danced with or talked to were of the 50-and-over kind” – blogger Lauren Ladoceour, describing CDA night life for her and another 22-year-old femme … To which, Mary Lancome responded on Huckleberries Online: “So, what is so bad about dancing with 50 something men?” You go, Mary.

Here’s hoping the anal retentive father at Old European in Post Falls June 19 was simply a poor role model and didn’t mean it when he threatened his two kids with “Do I have to break both your arms and your legs to make you sit still?” The kids weren’t making a peep. Wonder what he got for Father’s Day? Another helping of fear? … Spokane may lag way behind Seattle in population, but it sweats more. Spokane ranks 68th among the 100 sweatiest cities in the US, Emerald City No. 95. Rankings are based on average temperature, plus height and weight of population. Who thinks of these things? … Actress Patty Duke immortalized her fight with bipolar disorder in her book, “Call Me Anna.” Now, she has a Web site that deals with the topic. You can find it on the North Idaho blogroll of Huckleberries Online to the right … Batman – a Republican? The Bad Hair Blog of New Jersey makes the case: Batman carries weapons, finances public projects, and is liked by the Fox network. But don’t stop there, sez Bob Salsbury/Spokane: Batman, like Repubs, lives in a cave, has an isolated world view, and couldn’t see the shades of gray in reality if it smacked him upside his bat head. Touche.

Parting Shot
Mike Kennedy/The Idaho Kennedys, the moderate Demo who helped guide the CDA library bond to victory, is eyeing a run for the City Council. But there’s a catch. He lives 75 yards beyond the city limits, a problem that’ll be remedied if he can move into his new Coeur d’Alene Place home early this fall. If not, he may have to rent a CDA apartment for a month or so. That, or just say that he’s living in Coeur d’Alene, as former mayor Steve Judy did during his final days in office. Stay tuned.

Wild Card — Saturday 6/25/05

I might see you at the Ironman Sunday. Meanwhile, here’s your Wild Card if you can’t leave the house for some reason today …

I Walked …

… Home from work Friday night because the two family cars were in use elsewhere — about 2 1/2 miles. You see so much more on foot. I saw:

*The pride of ownership in the modest homes and well-kept lawns between the SR and Forest Cemetery. It’d be nice to walk to work every day.

*Former commish Ron Rankin’s grave, directly facing the Civil War soldier in Forest Cemetery. And the “I (Heart) Dad” ribbon that a family member had left. I remember how Ron snapped up two plots when the Cemetery Department found that 10 or so grave sites were available around that famous statue. I quietly applauded the oldtimer for picking up the best resting place in the cemetery for his wife, Alice, and himself.

*Someone had scribbled in black pen on the soldier: “Tiffany waz here.” And wondered how thoughtless a person would have to be to deface that wonderful monument.

*A sealed envelope with a Hallmark card placed on a nearby grave with the simple lettering of “Dad” on it for a man named Hugh who’d died in 2003 — and a Snickers bar underneath. And wondered about the love that went into that gesture. Hugh was a lucky man.

*The grave of Mae E. McEuen, who is memorialized by McEuen Field on the waterfront, three rows in from the front of the cemetery, among several other tombstones with the McEuen name on them.

*Young men setting up a grandstand for some kind of Xtreme Sports jumping competition on a corner lot along Fourth this weekend, while others revved their bikes and wheeled them to the top of dirt hills nearby.

*Talouse Moose, the Moose on the Loose sponsored by the Coeur d’Alene School District, standing in the corner of a glass-enclosed office being used for storage im Midtown, with a plaque warning of surveillance cameras and not to touch.

*A pretty hot looking 2001 Mustang convertible on a used-car lot at Fourth and Locust.

You see a lot of things when you get out of your car and take time to look. And I couldn’t help feeling that I live in a wonderful town.


Issue: More people are asking house guests to remove their shoes before they come in their homes. What started as a largely Asian custom has become more mainstream, and piles of shoes by the front door commonplace/Seattle Times.

Pro & Con: Molly Norris tells Seattle Times readers that she wants to keep her shoes on here, while reporter Sharon Pian Chan argues for the shoeless approach because even Manolas track in dirt here.

Question: Which side are you on?

Formal Dress — North Idaho Style

Issue: $50 tickets for Regal Cinema’s grand-opening on Wednesday specified “Semi-formal attire.”

DFO: Riverstone developer John Stone showed up in a tux. He declared himself out-dressed by Al Williams, NIC athletic director, who wore an impeccable linen suit and colorful silk tie. Other fashions ranged from sequins and backless dresses to tie-dye and clogs. One woman said she was plain baffled by “semi-formal” in a North Idaho context. She wore a skirt and black halter top. Her husband wore dressy shorts. (The event raised $30,000 for NIC athletics. The event brought in $15,000, which Stone matched.)

Question: What’s formal dress in North Idaho?

Feedback: Technically, semi-formal is a suit and tie for a man (no tux) and a short formal for women (no long evening gowns).
For my John Q. Citizen it just means wearing one of his “good” baseball caps — Jane Q. Citizen.

How Did Our Legislators Do?

Lon Woodbury is conducting a poll at his site in Boundary County re: how local legislators did during the 2005 session. Want to help him out? You can vote by going to his site here and checking the choices down the left hand side. Currently, the performance by the legislators are taking a beating, with 18% combined rating them good, excellent or fantastic and 20% alone rating them awful.

Question No. 2 — 6/24/05

Issue: Bush ‘more to blame’ for war than Saddam: Poll finds time changes perception as half now regard ‘W’ as provoker/WorldNetDaily.

DFO: This one breaks along party lines: 78% of D’s see Bush as responsible, 76% of R’s see Hussein as responsible. Independents lean Bush responsible. Me? Hussein, of course.

Question: Who was responsible for starting the Iraq War — Bush or Hussein?

Feedback: Oh, just go and add it to the list of evils Reagan is responsible for:

2. Poverty
3. Environmental destruction
4. Racism
5. Babies crying
6. The dog poop you stepped in as a 5 year old
7. The Crucifixion
8. Old ladies eating Alpo because they spent all their money on birth control pills because their HMO wouldn’t cover contraception
9. The fall of King Arthur and his Round Table
10. Tom Cruise’s apparent insanity.

Blame Reagan, Blame Reagan
He was a dottering insane fool anyway! — CrimsonW.

Moose on the Loose — Near UI/CDA Campus

Did you see the moose over here by the UIdaho CdA campus today? She attracted much attention as she wandered about trying to reassert her rights to the cherished waterfront. All the official interest was directed toward getting her out of here, but I think we should keep her around to witness the real running speed potential of all the lycra-clad athletes currently in town for the Ironman Triathalon. I’m sure it would improve their running speed if she took an abiding interest in them and their bright little uniforms! I know I would love to see it!

Doug Burr

Where Have All The Local Enviros Gone?

As the HBO blogmeister, I’m intensely aware that the community is nervous about growth. Yet, development seems to be pushing ahead unabated. The lack of cement seems to be the only thing slowing it down at all. How long before our beautiful area is destroyed? I wonder. And: Where are the successors to guys like the late Art Manley and David Potts, who could take anyone including The Duane and make The Electeds (as Gary Ingram says) pay attention. And: How can the community organize to ensure that bad development doesn’t happen. Or are we all dependent on the Hagadone chamber developer complex to make a peep? Just some questions on a beautiful Friday morning.

Feedback: I’d love to be a local environmental activist. Look at my qualifications: I’ve got long hair. I love to ride my bike. I’d like to be politically active and be a thorn in the side of developers. But, sadly, I don’t want to take up smoking, so I think that rules me out — Dang.

Question of the Day — 6/24/05

Issue: Idaho governor to seek input on forest use: New rules allow states to develop roadless federal land/Christopher Smith, SR.

DFO: I’m a fan of a multiple-use approach for our national forests. It’s past time that the state and feds prepare a plan for the 9.3 million acres of roadless areas in Idaho. Care, of course, must be given to ensure that the governor doesn’t allow the whole thing to be clear cut.

Question: What do you think should be done with Idaho’s roadless areas?

Feedback: I took a very informative class in environmental ecology from Bob Murray at NIC. It was a needed lab course. In that course I will never forget what Bob brought out. They three stages man goes through when he moves into an ecosystem. 1. Use and abuse. 2. Lock it up. 3. Manage. We were at the end of the use and abuse stage in the Northwest at that time. He also stated that for some reason, even though we know it is inevitable, we can’t go from Use and Abuse to Management — Jack.

Peanut Gallery — Repub “Lock Box”?

I see that many national R’s, including our own Idaho delegation, are now talking about creating a “lock-box” system for social security. I’m confused. I remember just a few years ago when they ridiculed Al Gore mercilessly for talking about just this concept. Now it sounds like a great thing to them. I would think they would at least think up a new name …

Dan of the County

Feedback: It’s a lock box, but every congressman has a chain around his neck with the key — Dang.

Karl Rove Ap-hollow-gizes?

Nah, I’m just toying with the emotions of our Demo friends on this blog. I wanted to run this cool graphic provided by the IHillary blogger. The latest on Rove’s comments below.

A White House official said Friday the administration finds it “somewhat puzzling” that Democrats are demanding presidential adviser Karl Rove’s apology or resignation for implying that liberals are soft on terrorism. “I think Karl was very specific, very accurate, in who he was pointing out,” communications director Dan Bartlett said. “It’s touched a chord with these Democrats. I’m not sure why — Associated Press. Full story of Bush standing by his man here.

Hat Tip: IHillary blog

Feedback: I really wish that this kind of stuff wouldn’t happen in politics. The truth is that Rove’s comments reflect the GOP view of Democrats. I assume that Howard Dean’s many colorful comments likewise reflect the Democrat view of the GOP. So, the Democrats can bellyache about it all day long, but it’s not going to change the GOP view that they are all a bunch of frisbee-playing, Volvo-driving, latte-sipping, psycho-analyzing, folk music-listening wimps — James Bond.

How You Can Tell You’re A Gitmo Prizoner

The Nose on Your Face, a blogger with a Letterman touch, offers “Top 9 Signs That You Might Be A Prisoner At Guantanamo Bay,” including: No. 3, “Oliver Stone wants to do an epic movie based on your life story. Sean Penn is already in Iraq doing research for the lead role.” You can read the entire list here.

Wild Card — Thursday (6/23/05)

We’ll use the same Wild Card for this evening’s entertainment, too — although I still have a few things to post today …

Best of the Local Blogs — 6/23/05

Above, terrific photo of a wood carving in CDA’s City Park by Family Phil. And you can find more of the same by following his Tall Trees link here.

*Everyone put your hands together for Kristin Hoppe/Not So Fast, who celebrated her second anniversary as a blogger yesterday, with a cake graphic here. In the blogosphere, two years is an eternity. Way to go, girl.

*I’ve been meaning to link to the terrific post that Family Phil ran for Father’s Day because it presents the other side — when father isn’t so great — and mebbe serves as a warning to some Dads out there to get their act together here.

*As CDADave lingers between life and his miserable head cold, he had time to jump in his Wayback Machine and visit Lake City, circa 1910, here.

*Bill McCrory/Whitecaps isn’t impressed with snake-oil gadgetry to keep track of registered sex offenders here.

*Cis Gors/From A Simple Mind is fighting the urge to put the air conditioner in the window of her house “cave” here.

*Big John Rook posts a poem to “Mr. Record Man” who kept the turnstiles turning back in the days when Wolfman Jack was king here.

*Sleeping still doesn’t come easy for Mom/Journalism Instructor Emeritus/Retiree Marianne Love/Slight Detour here.

Stop Me If This Sounds Familiar But …

… Yahoo shut down all of its user-created chat-rooms in an effort to stop the sex-chat forums in which adults troll for children here. Big advertisers—such as Pepsi, Georgia Pacific, and State Farm—pulled their ads from the internet portal after reports surfaced on the extent of the problem, pressuring Yahoo to finally take action.

Hat Tip: World mag blog

Court Expands Eminent Domain

This is a view of three of the homes that are to be taken through eminent domain in the Fort Trumbull section of New London, Conn. On Thursday the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that certain properties in the Fort Trumbull area could be seized by New London through eminent domain. You can find the story here.

Some of you have already commented about the court ruling. Anyone else?

You Heard That Brad Duke of Boise …

… won the $220M Powerball lottery, but you didn’t hear that there’s another Brad Duke who may wish he hadn’t. Brad Duke of St. Maries is 11 years older and already is fed up with media calling for interviews and schemers bugging him about investments. So sez the St. Maries Gazette-Record here.

Question No. 2 — 6/23/05

Issue: NIC budget uses foregone taxes: Trustee, business group leader suggest finding alternate means/Taryn Brodwater, SR.

DFO: Kelly Richards of Concerned Businesses is right here. By taking the foregone taxes and dropping $1 million more into the budget in salary increases, NIC has locked that chunk into the budget to become part of next year’s 3% increase. With the approval of city bonds in February, the approval of the recent school district levy and this unilateral hike, Coeur d’Alene residents are going to feel it in their property taxes this fall.

Question: Why wasn’t there more squawking about the NIC board taking the foregone taxes to add $1 million in payroll?

Site of the Day — Patty Duke’s

Dunno if you had the chance to check out Patty Duke’s new blog site, which focuses on bipolar disorders, but you should. According to nephew Mike Kennedy/The Idaho Kennedys, its been up for about 10 days and already getting inquiries despite the fact that it hasn’t been publicized. It looks good. (Mike’s been helping auntie design and organize the site.) And, since Patty lives in CDA, the blog site should be considered one of ours. Check it out here and you’ll see that Patty is about to introduce a line of Boyds Bears in Gettysburg tomorrow. (BTW, new photo used per request of “Patty Duke Fan.”)

Flame Wars

I’ve been busy over the last 24 hours refereeing fiery comments on the Huckleberries Online blog because things seem to have gotten personal again. This is the part of this avocation I dislike most. Honestly, I value people who take the time to read the blog and then to comment on what they’ve read or on life in general. I’ve tried hard to keep the comments feature open to all - without registration. And I appreciate that people with vastly different perspectives and lives enjoy dropping by here. When people start flaming each other, however, I’m forced to spend too much time soothing feelings and coaxing people to continue. I know commenters don’t like it when I step in to stop the flaming. But, if flame wars go unchecked, someone will ultimately get his/her feelings bruised so badly that he’ll quit. And that’s the blog’s loss. (A moment of silence here, for Any Mouse.) So, say your piece but please be civil about it.

Question of the Day — 6/23/05

Issue: Historic photo images are gone in a flash: Old negatives spontaneously combust in museum basement/Jonathan Brunt, SR.

DFO: In the summer between my sophomore and junior years in college, I literally lost every thing I owned in a fire that destroyed the small house I shared with a roommate. In fact, I’d just moved into the house and had everything piled in the middle of the living room when the fire hit. I regretted losing my high school and college letterman jackets most.

Question: Have you ever lost something of value in a fire?

Sweet Potatoes — Regal Cinemas Riverstone …

… for staging the fund-raiser that raised $30,000 for North Idaho College athletic programs. And the reviews were pretty swell, too. Guest Dena Wuerst: “It’s a major upgrade. Much better than the Showboat.” Stadium seating. Digital sound. 53,000 square feet. Seating capacity of 2250. I’ll check it out soon.

Wild Card — Wednesday (6/22/05)

You can launch into your own topics … or mild rant … with today’s Wild Card here …


Issue: Senate defeats move to cap climate gases: Supporters get 5 fewer votes than 2 years ago/Washington Post.

DFO: I don’t believe the science on global warming can be trusted. The Senate did the right thing here.

Question: Are you persuaded that global warming is a problem?

Peanut Gallery — Developers’ Best Friends?

OK, I am going to defer to others and ask for input. It’s clear I feel a lot of anger towards local elected officials who I feel are too “passive” on managing growth. By name, who are the worst offenders on allowing “crazy” growth. And who does a commendable job of keeping things honest. In Hayden, I know that Nancy Taylor is the one person who challenges and bucks the others with some degree of consistencie. I’ve “heard” Commisioner Brody called “The Developers Best Friend”, but know no details as to why. Come on - feed me…..


Peanut Gallery — The Duane’s mausoleum

re: the mausoleum for J.R. Simplot that’s now under construction.

A more vital mausoleum question: Where will The Duane be putting his mausoluem? Ideas:

* Third Street Docks
* Intersection of NW Blvd & Ironwood
* Four Corners (Gov’t Way & NW Blvd)
* Sherman Ave. between 6th and 8th


Feedback: I don’t think Duane Hagadone plans on dying, so it’s a moot point — John Austin.

Welcome Back, Mike

Looks like CdAPD Officer Mike Kralicek is back in town. Big escort from Washington into Idaho, up 95, west on Kathleen to the PD this morning. A lot of people lined up along US 95 in CdA to welcome him back.

Bill McCrory

DFO: Susan Drumheller/SR was at the Spokane airport to chronicle the return of Coeur d’Alene police officer Mike Kralicek. I’ll see if I can sneak a photo of two of him for today’s blog.

Photo of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 6/22/05

Summer soltice celebration at Stonehenge Monday. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines:

1. A very drunken and hairy man remembers to dot the “i” in Idiot — John Austin.

2. Having been declared legally insane after a crushing defeat in the 2006 mid-term elections, former DNC head Dr. Howard Dean renounced modern civilization, became fascinated by fire (or bright light as he called it)and babbled incessantly about the earth being flat. Dr. Dean is seen pictured above during a recreation break at The Whispering Pines Institute for the Hopelessly Deranged where he now resides — The Heimlich Maneuver.

3. David Franklin Oliveria reacts to the news from blogmeister Ken that HBO hits 10,000 page views for the first time — Ryan Hill.

HM: Bob perfoms another “Stupid Bob” stunt to get a cool pic for his blog — TUBOB.

Sen. Durbin takes on Andy of Mayberry?

No sooner had Sen. Durbin apologized for comparing Gitmo to Nazis, the Soviet gulag and Pol Pot’s killers than he provided examples of torture in Andy & Barney in red-white-and-blue jail. Or so sez blogger WuzzaDem, with photos and tongue firmly cheeked, here.

Vaseline, A Tube of Lipstick & Thou

I know Payne’s shenanigans aren’t going over to well with a lot of the folks up there but it’s something so many pd’s have wanted to say to their counties for years!

(a public defender on the Left Coast who linked to the Linda Payne story and provided the cool graphic above).

Huckleberries Quick Fix 6 — 6/22/05

APhoto Fix: Mattel announced its partnership today with Clear Channel Entertainment Productions for Barbie(r) doll’s live debut on the stage with “Barbie(tm) Live in Fairytopia!” Mattel will bring the magical world of Fairytopia(tm) to life in approximately 80 cities across North America beginning in Spring 2006.

“Mr. President, I’ve come to understand that was a poor choice of words. Last Friday, I tried to make this very clear that I understood that those analogies - the Nazis, Soviets, and others - were poorly chosen. I issued a release, which I thought made my intentions and my innermost feelings as clear as I possibly could” — teary U.S. Sen. Richard Durbin apologizing for comparing Gitmo to Nazis, Soviet gulag and Pol Pot killers here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Daryl Cagle & Co. provide their views of Gitmo here and American obesity here.

2. Humor Fix: Right Wing News surveyed 200 right-of-center bloggers re: who is screwing up America and came up with this here.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here and Word of the Day here.

4. Top of the News Fix: 9/11 study urges safer skyscraper rules here, Study: Cell phones distract drivers here, GOP leaders ditch private-accounts plan here, “Runaway Bride” feared being a bad wife here, and Missing Scout evaded rescuers here.

5. “Wage Gap” Fix: There’s a good reason why men earn more than women, according to iconoclastic John Stossel/Townhall, here.

6. Opinion Fix: Christopher Hitchens/Slate (DaVinci Code v. Downing Street Memo), Newt Gingrich & George Mitchell/USA Today (Making UN useful again), Dick Morris/The Hill (Beware of helping Hillary), Ronald Aronson/International Herald Tribune (Jean Paul Sartre at 100), and Bill Clinton/NY Times (Tsunami: 6 months later).

Photo of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 6/21/05

I’ll tell you what this is later. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines:

1. Reports of glaring errors The Bush administration’s “No Child Left Behind” were released today — Political Geek.

2. Hansel and Gretel feverously search for their chapter in the big book of life — Gary Cuff.

3. “Come on, Jimmy, let’s get out of here. This story will never make it on PlayStation” — Mike Kennedy.


Issue: AOL is conducting a survey to see whom people believe is the Greatest American of all time — and the finalists are: Benjamin Franklin, Martin Luther King Jr., George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan.

DFO: Either George or Abraham. Without them, we don’t get to this point. And I wished we still celebrated their birthdays independently in February.

Question: Who is the greatest American among those five above?

Best of Local Blogs + Phil’s Photo

Nah, I’m not looking for cutlines here. I’m simply reproducing the photo Family Phil took on Father’s Day on Tubbs Hill. This shot makes me feel good to live in a beautiful town with a 130-plus acre natural hill a block south of the downtown on the lake.

Big-Time Hat Tip: Phil Corless

*TUBOB presents “Fake Cellphone Conversations to Have When You’re Stuck In the Middle Seat in Coach” that are raw and funny here.

*Why did CDADave have to point out that the days will begin to get shorter from this one on to the dead of winter Dec. 21 here?

*Bayview Herb Huseland is trying to decide among the five finalist in that Greatest American AOL poll here.

*Bill McCrory/Whitecaps shares some thoughts on child molester Dean Arthur Schwartzmiller who terrorized hundreds of children, including some in Washington and Idaho, here.

*Demo Mike Kennedy/The Idaho Kennedys shares some thoughts on visiting the Richard Nixon Library in Southern California here.

A Mayor’s Tears

In the “Did She Or Didn’t She Cry Category And She Sez She Didn’t,” Coeur d’Alene Mayor Sandi Bloem was in good humor today following her interview with KVNI’s Dick Haugen — at the end of which Dick poked her by saying that it was nice that she could make it through the interview without crying … In a related matter, Sheriff Rocky Watson dropped by this AM to discuss a variety of issues, including the unsolved Groene case, and he mentioned the Monday Huckleberry that said Duane Hagadone had brought Sandi to tears after haranguing her for opposing his downtown garden plans. Sez Rocky: “I don’t know if I could make her cry or not. If I did, that still doesn’t mean she’d back down.” We both agreed Sandi’s tough, tears or no. And that she’s done a heckuva job.

Best of the Northwest — 6/21/05

In a move to regain his leadership role following sexual misconduct allegations, Spokane Mayor Jim West (shown above at a ribbon-cutting ceremony for a Spokane skate park) appeared at a public safety meeting to outline a plan to raise taxes to restore some police, fire and library services here. Meanwhile, city biz leaders are pressing West for quick action on a recall effort here.

1. Eric Devericks/Seattle Times doodles re: white-hot real estate market here.

2. Perry Manley didn’t want to pay child support, and the seeming unfairness of a system that hounded him to turn over his hard-earned cash to his ex-wife had made him angry and obsessed over the past 15 years. That obsession led to his death at the hands of two Seattle police officers inside the federal courthouse in Seattle here.

3. A 29-year-old Kennewick police officer fired for an April road-rage incident, during which he allegedly pointed a loaded pistol at another motorist while off duty, was charged Monday in Benton County Superior Court here.

4. A honey-loving bear was destroyed after making the one-strike-and-your-out mistake of ransacking a cabin in the Whitefish, Mont., area here.

5. WSU is recrafting its harassment policy following criticism over the way it handled a situation in which white basketball players harassed an Asian-American student last year here.

6. IMHO-NW: Spokesman-Review (Washington DUI law), Doug Clark/Spokesman-Review (Touring Geiger Correctional), Idaho Statesman (Hikers, campers should help USFS out), Lois Sweet Dorman/Seattle Times (Sacred Snoqualmie Falls), and Art Thiel/PI (Young Seattle M’s).

*Spokane, Seattle and Portland rank 68, 95, and 97 in the latest listing of the top 100 sweatiest cities in the US here and complete list here.

*A community college degree and high GPA no longer are guarantees for acceptance at Washington four-year schools here.

*Law enforcement officers in North Idaho are cracking down on illegal fireworks here.

*5 unbuckled children from Boise ejected from vehicle in crash, 2 critical, here.

Orbusmax provides the rest of the Northwest here.

West A Long Way from Finished

But West can appeal that ruling to the state Supreme Court, which will be out of session between July 1 and Sept. 12. If West appeals, recall supporters can’t start circulating petitions for signatures until the high court rules. Even if the mayor were to lose his appeal, that challenge could delay a recall vote until 2006.Jim Camden, SR

Business leaders urge fast vote on West recall: Mayor asked to forgo appeal, let voters decide

DFO: Why do I think the mayor has the upperhand here?

It’s My 2 Cents

Thirty years ago today, I took Brenda Orrmins as my wife in a simple ceremony at a small Baptist church in Corning, Calif. The temperature was in the triple digits. She was a year out of high school. I’d begun my newspaper career, working as a sports writer in a small newspaper in the neighboring town of Red Bluff. We returned home from our honeymoon with less than $10 to our name. Since then, she’s followed me to Stockton, Calif., Kalispell, Mont., Lewiston, Idaho, and for the last 21 years, to Coeur d’Alene. We’ve buried our fathers and a daughter. We’ve walked through the fright of cancer together. We’ve also shared a lot of good times and continue to serve The Lord together. She remains the sweetest person I’ve met. I’m blessed indeed.

Quick Fix 6 — 6/25/05

Soldier sculptures, part of the Confederate Monument in Portsmouth, Va., are shown with their faces sprayed black on Monday, June 20, 2005. Authorities say vandals defaced the faces on the four confederate soldier statues at the monument over the weekend/APhoto.

I am no defender of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s, to put it mildly. But the recent charges in Ed Klein’s book to the effect that she is a closet homosexual or that Bill raped her and that this act triggered Chelsea’s conception are as crazy as the list that was circulating around of the 20 or so people the Clintons allegedly had killed. These accusations do not belong in our public dialogue. They hit below the belt and tend to discredit the more serious and sober concerns so many of us have about the danger she would present in high officeDick Morris/The Hill here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Monte Wolverton (Patriot Act), Rob Rogers (Identify the real criminal), and Mike Keefe (Social Security reform).

2. Humor Fix: It was 122 degrees today in India. It was so hot people in India were sweating like Americans waiting to see if their jobs were being outsourced to India” — Jay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here and Word of the Day here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Pope chastizes Europe in book here, Bush meets Vietnamese PM here, Bush faces decision on Bolton nomination here, Klansman convicted in 1964 murders here, and US House sells for record $90M here.

5. Poll Fix: 81% of Americans want U.S. flag protected here.

6. Opinion Fix: Brendan Miniter/Wall Street Journal (No time to go wobbly in Iraq), Fred Kaplan/Slate (Bolton takes alickin’), Catherine Seipp/Cathy’s World (So, you want to be a Hilton?), Frank J. Gaffney Jr./Washington Times (Dustbin Durbin), and Tim Graham/National Review (PBS is loud, obnoxious).


Issue: Phoenix reclaims title as sweatiest city: “Valley of the Sun” city top persperation producer for second time in four years.

DFO: I worked for four years in Red Bluff, Calif., where rattlesnakes died if they made the mistake of trying to cross one of the hot-as-blazes roads in the afternoons. The temperature hit 118 on the day I interviewed for the sports editor’s job for the Red Bluff Daily News. I know what hot is, folks. But that was then. Now, if the temperature passes 85, I’m panting.

Question: What is the “sweatiest town” you’ve ever lived in?

Hat Tip: John Rook

Seattle Courthouse Shooting

Someone was asking about that Seattle courthouse shooting earlier today. You can read all about it here.

Her Sandiness sez …

… tells Huckleberries she didn’t cry while The Duane was browbeating her at his HQ for her opposition to the downtown gardens. Huckleberries hears otherwise. But she was there. And we weren’t. Besides, why would she fib about something like that? No big deal either way. The Duane probably makes his lieutenants cry all the time for the fun of it.

Wayback Machine — Brunswick Cafe

Here it is; the Brunswick Cafe, Sherman Avenue between 4th and 5th Streets, in 1968! It was the last year of Lyndon Johnson’s presidency…gas was probably 25 cents a gallon, if that…I used to go into the Brunswick as a kid…and drink Cherry Cokes. (strong stuff!) The severe winter of 1968…I’d go snow-shoveling all over town…then walk downtown, spend my money on…you guessed it, records…and I’d always end up over at the Brunswick.


CDADave offers several local trips in his Wayback Machine here, here and here.

Photo of the Day — 6/20/05

NASCAR driver Mark Martin and Batman at Michigan International Speedway Friday. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines:

1. So…what is it going to take to put you in this car today? — Political Geek.

2. They was telling me that you was real famous, Mr. Batman. I’m not much of a reader, myself. That’s prolly why I hadn’t heard of ya. My cousin Tammy Lynn used to read the funny papers, but I made her quit when we was married — Scott.

3. I sure hope you are insured — Me.

Best of the Northwest — 6/20/05

Shannon Sullivan (above, volunteering at her son Dylan’s elementary), 37, the single mother pushing the recall effort against Spokane Mayor Jim West, has lost her job and her savings account. And now is looking for work. Her life would have been much simpler had her 9-year-old not seen Mayor West on TV after his sex scandal broke and asked: Why isn’t anyone doing anything? For the story of this courageous woman, click here.

1. “Sesame Street” looks at proposed Repub cuts in public broadcasting funding via the pen of David Horsey/PI here.

2. The longer Spokane Mayor Jim West stays in office the bigger his state and local pension checks will get, according to Richard Roesler and Mike Prager, SR, here.

3. John Hodge began and ended his career with the Benton County (Tri-Cities) Sheriff’s Office with a bang, crashing a cruiser six weeks after he started and then getting crunched by a car running a red light six weeks from retirement here (free subscription).

4. The Internet could play key role in Washington’s No New Gas Tax signature push, according to Joseph Turner, Tacoma News Tribune, here (free subscription).

5. Spokane, Portland and Seattle have nothing on Phoenix, Ariz., when it comes to sweating. After a one-year hiatus, Phoenix tops the charts as the “Sweatiest City” in the US, while Spokane checks in at No. 68 and Portland and Seattle rank near the bottom with San Francisco here.

6. IMHO-NW: Idaho Statesman (Idaho’s obesity problem), Spokesman-Review (Spokane crime rate), Steve Smith/Spokesman-Review (Timid civic response to West allegations), Kay McFadden/Seattle Times (Disastrous public broadcasting bill), and Steve Kelley/Seattle Times (Ibanez living up to Edgar’s legacy).

*Developer David Hale thinks Boise needs its own version of Portland’s downtown Pearl District, or maybe New York’s Greenwich Village, according to Joe Estrella/Idaho Statesman, here.

*Headstones where Indians died fighting Custer to be dedicated here.

*Fallen activist’s father raises funds to rebuild Palestinian homes here.

Orbusmax provides the rest of the Northwest here.

Shameless Internal Boosterism

From the penultimate paragraph of Bob Paulos’ Sunday Brand X column:

It should be clear to just about everyone that the major development in the next few years will continue to be along Northwest Boulevard between Government Way and Kathleen … Riverstone, the new community center and a new shopping center at Appleway and Ramsey.

Too bad someone doesn’t come up with a spectacular idea for breathing new life in the downtown area so it can keep pace with the rest of the city … you know, something like a world-class botanical garden, if someone would offer to finance and maintain it.

DFO: Izzit just me, or is this over-the-top in promoting Boss Duane Hagadone’s downtown garden?

Cool Local Photo

Jane Q. Citizen snapped this mutt a coupla weeks ago in a Post Falls alley. She called it the “quintessential north Idaho snapshot.” And she could be right.

Realtors┬« Uber Alles (Redux)

The blitzkrieg is rolling,
they have carried the day;
they have turned Coeur d’Alene
into little L.A.

The Bard of Sherman Avenue


Good God - I hope not … I fled Left Angeles in 2001 and wanted to get away from this type of helter-skelter developmenmt, but it seems to have followed me. I am SAD. It seems that development will happen, whether we want it or not, BUT does it have to be so @##@@$! invasive? You’ve probably noted my objections to the Lost Creek Development and your paper has printed two of my notes on the subject. Bekki Nappi too seemed to agree with me that things are not KOSHER (Treyf, to use the correct term), but somehow the Planning Commission didn’t - I can just see it all now..if folks are worried about the ‘Z’ slashed road up Canfield Mt. then look out - with Gus Johnson fighting a 2-to-1 vote on his own board, then we’ll likely see the Mount PAVED. … I mourn — Milt Nelson, Rathdrum.

Early Bird Special — 6/20/05

Issue: The longer he stays, the bigger West’s checks: Length of service increases pensions from city and state/Richard Roesler & Mike Prager, SR.

DFO: Money might be a prime motivator for West clinging to office. But it may not be the only one. I mean — what does he have once he’s no longer an elected official?

Question: Does West have a future in the political sphere once he’s recalled or serves out his term?

Feedback: Don’t tell me from the dual-navel Prayer Breakfast or I’ll barf — Green Libertarian.

DFO: Grab a barf bag.

Photo of the Weekend — 6/18-19/05

Cody Olin, 12, plays in falling water from a dam on the Guadalupe River in Center Point, Texas, June 14. He is taking a break from the hot weather and spending time with is family and grandparents in the small hill country town.

Top Cutlines:

1. “Little Jimmy, after eleven years of being raised by salmon decides it’s time to come out into the real world” — Gary Cuff.

2. Mayor Sandi Bloem’s tears after three hours with ‘The Duane’ — Lesley Presley.

3. Little Timmy Johnson is about to learn why we don’t play at the base of major hydroelectric dams when they open the gates for the spring runoff — Bob.

Question No. 2

Issue: A chrome and color delight: Restored roadsters and customized classics cruise in for Saturday’s Car d’Lane show/John Craig, SR.

DFO: My summer bug has kept me in the house all weekend. So, I’m passing on Car d’Lane this year. However, I’ll be ready for the town’s red, white and blue Fourth of July Parade and fireworks show. That’s my favorite CDA event.

Question: What’s your favorite North Idaho event?


“Practice Compassionate Impeachment”

Hat Tip: CDADave

Peanut Gallery — She Loves Duane, Sandi

As a community we are fortunate to have Sandy as our mayor, she has the vision, dedication and passionate that will ensure Coeur d’Alene to be the best community in the northwest. Most importantly she is a local! I am sure she handled the situation with style and professionalism.

Also, we are fortune to have citizens of all incomes that care and give to this community.

I am sure the Hagadone Corporation, gives more to this community then any of us will every know. As for the Garden ….what I have seen is that whatever Duanedoes he does it extremely well; therefore, I am sure that the garden would be the same. I just ask that Duane continually work with Sandy and the community to maintain our All American City!


Bonnie’s PS….I trust the locals like Sandy and Duane vs some of these newcomers who are only coming for the cash!

Feedback: What exactly does Duane do well? I’ve seen much better hotels and restaurants. His office building is an eyesore. His newspaper is a journalistic joke. I don’t play golf, so I have no idea about the resort’s golf course. But how hard can it be to hire a golf course designer? Plus, Duane didn’t create the lake, trees, and mountains in the background. So, what exactly is there to be so proud of other than a legacy of being a Scrooge? — Family Phil.

Wild Card — Saturday 6/18/05

You know the drill by now. If it’s rainy, I’d like to read a few comments when I check in later today. If it’s sunny outside, you need to be soaking it in and fuhgedabout the blog …

Feedback: DFO’s comment at right about all “mean and ugly” entries will be “ruthlessly deleted” made me think of this verse I read once in a joke book: We were speeding in my convertible,/My girlfriend Ruth and me./I hit a bump at “95”/And drove on “Ruthlessly.”

Wild Card — Friday

Been a crazy second half of the week, folks. Chest cold. Blog gremlins. Blog trolls. I’m wiped out and need a good night’s sleep to get over the hump with this summer thing I caught. Hope you enjoyed yourself this week. The county courthouse certainly made my week as it has before. Enjoy yourself this weekend. And, if you have time, drop a comment on the Wild Card …

Rocky Discusses Groene Case

Huckleberries Online has received a comment from Kootenai County Sheriff Rocky Watson about the frustrating Groene murder/kidnapping case here.

Feedback: I think that too often people get the wrong idea from shows like “law & Order” or “CSI” which shows cases being solved relatively quickly and easily. It often does not work this way. My hopes and prayers are with the police and the family/friends of the victims — Happy X. Dopey.

Hey, Look At That Kewl Ad …

… On the top of the page. Does this mean I’ve hit the big time? Or I’ve become a media whore? Blogmeister Ken sez we’re going to be running some kinda contest for free tickets to Regal Cinemas Riverstone beginning Monday. Mebbe I should quit making cracks about those ugly ventilators on the top of the building, hunh?

Feedback: The ad bothers me. Not because I’m opposed to online advertising (Frankly, I hope that HBO becomes a nice little revenue generator). But the subject matter of one of the ads is troubling (hip & knee trouble). It makes me wonder if HBO readership demographics skew a little older than I would’ve guessed. Or, it may just be a way to reach our esteemed host on a different level. :) — Wiseacre Ryan.

Posting Problems — Continued

I’ve heard from several of you this p.m. that you’re having trouble posting. We should be in the clear now. But could you run a test post under this item to see if things are better? (Ryan, Eagle Eye, Frum Helen Back, pleaz try.)

Trouble Posting Comments?

I just received a second e-mail from a poster who was prevented from leaving a comment. If you have trouble, pleaz drop me a not via SR e-mail. We’ve been monkeying with the software somewhat. And that may have caused the problem.

Feedback: I’ve had two comments now posted but figured the blogmeister was mad at me for going on the train ride — Frum Helen Back.

Another Approach to Father’s Day

Now, that my kids are almost out of the nest, I wonder sometimes what they think of me. Did I do a good job? Both of the kids are doing well in life, college and have bright futures. Above all, they’re good people. That’s an indication that I did OK, although I suspect that my wife had more to do with their development than I did. By choice, way back when, she decided to stay home with the kids. And, I believe, they’re better off for it. My happiest memories are of her sitting on the couch with them, reading them their daily Bible devotions. Even at 19, Amy Dearest still snuggles up to her mother on the couch.

I don’t think I performed my part as well as my wife did. Too many times I was too fixated on work. But I made sure that my kids knew I loved them and appreciated them. And I attended almost every sports, drama or other extracurricular school function in which they were involved. Still, I could have done better. For those of you with children at home, I have this advice. Don’t waste your time chasing money. Your most valued possessions are right under your nose.


Feedback: My Dad kissed each of his four kids goodbye at 4AM before his 2 1/2 hour train ride to New York City and hugged us all when he got home around 7:00 PM. He always quietly wrote checks for the Church and charities when asked. He played with us a lot and made us do a fair amount of work around the house and yard. He loves my Mom and remains her constant companion at age 84. He taught me a lot and most all of it was good. My Dad is one of the most remarkable, unremarkable men you’d ever want to meet. — Stopthecrazygrowth.

A Message for Father’s Day

My father, Franklin Simas Oliveria, wasn’t a big shot, by the world’s standards — in fact, he wasn’t a big man physically. Mebbe 5-6, with a rock-solid paunch and John Henry-sized forearms. He was a first-generation Portuguese-American (as was my mother), who often told me that he could make a living with his brawn but I’d have to make a living with my brain. He milked cows by hand, hauled hay and was respected in the Portuguese community of central California. Above all, he loved his family and enjoyed a good laugh. His legacy is six siblings who remain close and have solid marriages, most now stretching into the third and fourth decades and grandchildren who are becoming doctors, college professors, geologists, EMTs, etc. I’m now the same age he was when he was killed in a vehicle accident. I hope I’m half the man.

With Father’s Day this weekend, feel free to post your thoughts about father in the comments section. You can find Kerri Thoreson’s terrific column this week about her father, the late Ron Rankin, here.

Feedback: My father… I can’t think of one positive thing to say about him. My kids should consider themselves very lucky that, at some point, I woke up and realized that I must learn from my own father and work hard to be the opposite of him. So far, they’re reaping great benefits. And so am I — Family Phil.

Quick Fix 6 — 6/17/05

APhoto Fix: Still wearing her bridal gown, Iranian Elahe Mirzaie, fills out her ballot paper to cast her vote to cast in the Iranian presidential elections earlier today. See Top of the News Fix.

The Senate Armed Services Committee chairman yesterday accused Sen. Richard J. Durbin of insulting American soldiers with a “grievous error in judgment” by comparing U.S. treatment of al Qaeda suspects to the crimes of Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin and Pol Pot, and demanded that the Senate’s No. 2 Democrat apologize, according to the Washington Times, here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Chuck Asay (White Christian homophobes, etc.), Gary Varvel (Michael Jackson trial), and Mike Luckovich (Michael Jackson sleepovers).

2. Here’s an interesting statistic - according to “Cosmo”, over 30% of men between the ages of 18 and 34 still live with their parents. These men are known as “Star Wars” fans — Jay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here and Word of the Day here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Hilton Hardee burger ad pulled in Tennessee here, Iranians vote in prez elections here, Poll: 94% believe Bush misled nation into war here, Group wants cancer warning on potato chips here, and PETA members arrested on animal cruelty charges here.

5. Approval Ratings Fix: You can find the public approval ratings of all 100 U.S. senators here.

6. Opinion Fix: William Saletan/Slate (Terri Schiavo’s autopsy), National Review (Schiavo autopsy changes nothing), Joe Conason/NY Observer (New low in Hillary bashing), Rich Lowery/National Review (Father is best), and R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr./Washington Times (Howard Dean).

Feedback: Durbin’s comments. I think he went over the line. While I disagree with the right-wing premise that this is an insult to all American forces, Durbin needs to apologize; not for hammering on the treatment of the prisoners, but for his hyperbolic statement — Ryan Hill.

Wild Card — Thursday Night

I’m moving the afternoon Wild Card to the head of the blog, so there’s already several items posted. Enjoy yourself tonight. And I’ll catch up with you again late tonight or tomorrow morning …

Best of the Local Blogs — 6/16/05

*CDADave takes us on a trip aboard his Wayback Machine to Coeur d’Alene’s City Beach way back when here. (Yo, Dave, the URL is not working on the permalink.)

*Mike Kennedy/The Idaho Kennedys shares some thoughts about Deputy Public Defender Linda Payne and the courthouse flap salary here.

*Family Phil didn’t let bad manners on the part of some invited guests (who didn’t RSVP or show) ruin his son’s 7th birthday here.

*Bill McCrory/Whitecaps discusses recidivism among registered sex offenders here.

*Cis Gors/From A Simple Mind introduces us to the free spirit who is her Aunt Harriett here.

Remember Brownie Boy?

Well, he ain’t got nothing on 4 Texas high school cheerleaders who tried a different, ahem, natural topping for a pizza at a cheerleading camp here.

Question No. 2 — The Runaway Bride

Issue: Runaway Bride Jennifer Wilbanks makes dash for cash: Signs eye-popping deal to have rights to story shopped to TV networks/World Net Daily.

DFO: Wonder if Julia Roberts will play Wilbanks in the movie?

Question: What stupid thing would you do if you knew it’d get you 15 minutes of fame and a $500,000 book/movie deal?

Huckleberries Hears That …

Duane Hagadone’s profit on the $120 million 30-unit condo project on The Coeur d’Alene Resort golf course will be about 10%. Berry Picker: The cost of construction on each of those units has got to be running around $400-500/square foot. I’m told Black Rock houses/cabins are running around $400/sq ft.” Still, $12 million isn’t chump change.

Eagle Eye: Duane would not do this project for a profit of $12 million. That is chump change to him.If you do the math of 30 units, average square footage of 5800 sq ft and a price of $450 a foot that puts the profit in the range of of 30-35%. Now you’re talking his language!He’ll roll that money over to Blackwell Island and double or triple that. Give the man some credit. When it comes to make a profit,he takes a back seat to no one. (DFO: I’ll defer to Eagle Eye on this one.

Hats Off — to Jason Hunt

Jason/CDA Press has just returned from a week’s stay with severely wounded CDA Blue Mike Kralicek and his family at the Craig Hospital near Denver. Jason’s photo essay on the Press online site of the officer’s life as he rehabs is top-notch. You can see it here. (Click on photos to enlarge them.)

Hat Tip: Bob Stevens

Photo of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 6/16/05

Kenny Bertram gets his motorcycle airborne as he performs in the Moto X Freestyle demonstration with a mural backdrop of former Los Angeles Lakers’ players. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines:

1. Although motorcyclist Kenny Bertram safely jumped over this 40 foot high mural of former Laker greats, he later crashed attempting to outjump the chip on Kobe Bryant’s shoulder — The Heilich Maneuver.

2. Bertram in his notorious jump of the famous “Oreo” building — Scott.

3. White Men Can Jump… They just need a little help — Family Phil.

Question of the Day — 6/16/05

Issue: Some depot critics convert: County wants annual inspection of refueling facility; may not pursue revoking BNSF permit/Erica Curless, SR.

Commissioner Gus Johnson (after meeting with BNSF and state enviro officials last night): “Four weeks ago I was one of the most vocal opponents but now I’m 95 percent more comfortable.”

Question: Are you as comfortable with the safety of the BNSF refueling depot as Ol’ Gus and his two commish sidekicks?

Ah’m Your Hucklberry

Site: In Judge Barry Watson’s courtroom. Situation: a young mother is defending herself from an action springing from rent payments she owes while her 3-year-old son rests quietly on a bench behind her. Watson (noticing the boy hasn’t moved in an hour): “Your son is well behaved.” Woman: “He’s sleeping.” Watson: “Is he going to apply for bailiff?” After the chuckles died down and the woman’s case was settled to everyone’s satisfaction, Watson addressed the woman one last time, directing her to the county human resource officer, so her son could put in his application to become a bailiff. Meanwhile, none of the bailiffs made a peep either.

Early Bird Special — 6/16/05

Issue: Spokane’s crime stats top state’s largest cities: 97 crimes per 1000 population/Jonathan Brunt, SR.

DFO: There are many reasons that my family doesn’t go to Spokane as much as it used to do. Improved shopping and restaurants in North Idaho. You don’t have to drive as far. And Spokane’s crime is getting outta hand. We a young man is murdered in broad daylight near a high school and Starbucks, you know the city should be treated with care.

Question (for non-Spokane residents): Are you concerned enough by crime in Spokane to stay away?


Issue: Holy blockbuster: ‘Batman Begins’ is terrific/Robert Horton,

DFO (taking a light approach tonight): I love this kind of sci-fit, Super Heroes thing. And I’m in tall cotton this year with the final installment of “Star Wars,” Batman here, and the Narnia movie later this year.

Question: Do you still see movies on the big screen? And what’s your favorite movie genre?

Inside Huckleberries — 6/15/05

*Today marks the beginning of my 36th year as a newspaperman. Whattaride.

*First, you should know that Jim O’Day was a young sports writer when I hired him at The Daily Inter Lake (Kalispell, Mont.). Onward. In a Missoulian article online today, I read that Jim is applying for the AD job at the University of Montana — and not once did he mention what a tremendous influence on had on his career. Then, mebbe there’s a reason for that. Good man from good newspaper stock. I wish him well. For Missoulian story, click here.

*The city dropped my wife’s ticket for parking in a handicap zone in front of the mayor’s shop — that was already occupied by another car (with a handicap sticker). Seems the spot is extra long and folks get snagged regularly by it. I hope that others have protested, rather than paid an undeserved ticket, and the city corrects the problem soon. Meanwhile, I need to go over and check out the elongated spot myself.

*Hat Tap — to Blogmeister Ryan for putting that new feature out front on the right side that shows the 4 or 5 most recent comments. It enables blurkers to see when something new is posted. (Blurker, for those of you new here, is the blogosphere’s name for someone who lurks but doesn’t comment. Most be a lotta you folks, judging from the daily pageview numbers.

*Here’s another Samizdata word: anti-idiotarian. I’m not going to name names here. But an anti-idiotarian is someone opposed to a whole raft of political values which are derived from a fundamentally irrational world view. A/I’s span the political spectrum and are characterized by a vocal rational judgmentalism, generally hawkish sentiments and transcendent loathing of Noam Chomsky. Remind you of Any One?

*HBO missed a single-day blog record by 155 Monday when pageviews hit 6379. But I’m not griping. The blog is starting to bump over 5000 a coupla times a week, and 6000 is serendipitous.

Public Defender Story Hits Big Time …

… Linda Payne’s story is now on the front page of wild & wacky Fark — lipstick, Vaseline, et al, here. And the Boston Globe picked it up here.

Hat Tip: Kristin Hoppe/Not So Fast

Dear Gus, Rick & Katie;

re: text of Linda Payne letter/gift to commissioners.

The raise you gave us then cut in half is simply another example of crud that you thrust upon the criminal attorneys for the County. To give us the raise and then take it away the next day is yet another example of your disrespect for loyal county employees at the Public Defender and Prosecuting Attorney’s offices. We’ll add it to the comments previously made by you and your ilk — that our bosses are “chicken (manures)” for inviting us to an open public meeting regarding our salaries, that monkeys could do our jobs, and that your civil attorneys are “more equal” than we are.

The next time you choose to give us something, please lubricate and/or kiss first. Vaseline and red lipstick are enclosed (please excuse the small amounts — I don’t make that much to give you how much you need or deserve).

L. Payne
Deputy Public Defender.

For Those of You Keeping Score at Home …

… I just asked Editor Steve Smith (pictured right) what he’d do if a newsroom employee did the same thing to him that Linda Payne did to the commissioners. (I’m on a conference call with Smith and the rest of the Editorial Board as we speak.) Smith said he’d call the journalist into his office for “a chat” about inappropriate behavior. But he wouldn’t fire him/her. Payne’s behavior, he said, was “appalling” but he gave her points for her gutsy stand. Bottom line? Smith: “You get to do that once to me.”

Photo of the Day — 6/15/05

Sorry, folks, I couldn’t resist. Here’s Bill signing a copy of his autobiography for a Ball State student. You write the cutline (and keep it on this side of the line).

Top Cutlines:

In A League of His Own: Girl: “Could you autograph this for me, Mr. President?” Clinton: “Sure, what is it?” Girl: “A summons” — The Heimlich Maneuver.

1. “Daddy?” — Out of Stater Tater.

2. “I have not had sex with that elephant” — DemoNot.

3. (tie) Thinking that the college chicks really dig the literary author types, Bill Clinton uses his witty and clever pick-up line, “May I borrow your library card, I want to check you out” — Side Note. And: Heh, heh…that’s a nice shirt you got on there…wanna trade for this book? — Crimson W.

Question No. 2 — Lipstick & Vaseline

Have you ever pulled a Johnny Paycheck on a boss — you know, take this job and shove it?

Huckleberries Quick Fix 6 — 6/15/05

APhoto Fix: Broadcaster John Madden, left, looks out of the booth as partner Al Michaels does a pre-game report before the Hall of Fame game in this Aug. 5, 2002 photo, in Canton, Ohio. Madden is joining NBC as a game analyst for the network’s newly acquired “Sunday Night Football.”

An autopsy on Terri Schiavo backed her husband’s contention that she was in a persistent vegetative state, finding that she had massive and irreversible brain damage and was blind, the medical examiner’s office said Wednesday. It also found no evidence that she was strangled or otherwise abused, according to the AP here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Daryl Cagle & Co. provide a roundup of Michael Jackson ‘toons here.

2. Humor Fix: “This just in — Saddam Hussein would like his trial moved to Santa Maria, California” — David Letterman.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here and Word of the Day here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Sneddon: No nude photos of Jackson here, KC abortionist accused of eating fetuses here, GOP senators may make 69 retirement age here, Mess hall bombing kills 26 Iraqi soldiers here, and Bush, XXX-rated world intersect here.

5. Click It Or Ticket Fix: “The justifications used for “Click It or Ticket” can easily provide the template for government control of our diets and other lifestyle features,” sez Walter Williams here.

6. Opinion Fix: U.S. Sen. James Inhoff/USA Today (Global warming evidence underwhelming), Michelle Malkin/Townhall (Snobs on “The View”), James Glassman/Tech Central Station (Housing bubble overblown), Kathleen Parker/Townhall (Where have all ze real men gone?), and Thomas Hibbs/National Review (“Batman Begins”).


Issue: Bill Clinton pays off legal bills: Couple now comfortable financially with millions in income/CBS News

DFO: They paid their dues.

Question: What will Bill and Hillary be doing 5 years from now?

Inside Huckleberries — 6/14/05

*Gotta coupla of important anniversaries in my family and personal life over the next coupla weeks. Today, Flag Day, my older sister, Eileen, turned 60. (BTW, I’m second in line outta 6; 2 other siblings live in North Idaho). Eileen runs marathons, so I don’t consider her an old 60.

*Tomorrow, I celebrate my 35th anniversary as a newspaperman. A lot of water under the bridge since I started in the mailroom of the Chico (Calif.) Enterprise-Record under cantankerous Lester Earle and his wife. But it was worth it.

*On the 21st, I celebrate my 30th wedding anniversary with the Love of My Life, Brenda. And, yes, I’d marry her again in a heartbeat.

*On the 23rd, my mother, who also lives Kootenai County, turns 80.

*Not much else to report except a curious blog number for Monday, which hit 4957 pageviews by the 4 p.m. split. With the evening numbers, HBO could be in record territory set March 11 of 6534 (Brownie Boy episode). Stay tuned.

Ah’m Your Huckleberry

Ya gotta love the Bonner County Sheriff’s log. At times, its use of words is worth the daily read. Take Saturday’s log, for example — puh-LEEZ. At 8:31 p.m., Deputy Dawgs Martinez and Bell were dispatched to 499 Shamar Drive in Blanchard and took a report of “an attempted homicide of a Pomeranian canine.”

For Those Keeping Score At Home …

… The Government Way bridge over Interstate 90 will be closed for a year, beginning June 27, to complete construction work. An info meeting at ITD HQ is set from 5-7 p.m. Thursday, June 23. If you don’t like it, you can call 765-4301 or contact ITD PRmeiser Barbara Babic. And if you still don’t like it? In a word, ITD sums it up: Tough.

Afternoon Question — “Nazis”

Issue: Mebbe “Seinfeld’s” infamous “Soup Nazi” started the trend, but we have a tendency to call authoritarian figures “Nazis.” In recent weeks, for example, I’ve used the expression Food Nazis and Downtown Parking Nazis to describe individuals who are involved in regulatory work. Then, there are those who’d like to be, such as the Word Nazis who like to point out typos and verb/subject disagreement to journalists. But I digress. Bottom line? Two people have written to HBO to complain about the use of a word which once described a world evil.

Question: Is the word “Nazi” too strong to use offhandedly in describing authoritarian regulators?

Photo of the Day — 6/14/05

These nekkid guys and dolls are protesting something in Madrid. Can’t remember exactly what. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines:

Pro Division: An independent investigation by the Spokesman-Review revealed that Mayor West had downloaded this picture onto his office computer more than 8,000 times. When asked to comment, West merely stated, this picture is art, and a beautiful expression of art, at that” — The Heimlich Maneuver.

1. The only sound that could be heard was rubber humming on asphalt as the hopeful riders arrived one at a time at Michael Jackson’s Neverland to find a note on his door reading, “Sorry, no more sleepovers” — Brent Andrews.

2. June 20, 2006: To avoid penalties and late fees, Kootenai County taxpayers (high tailing it, with all they have left) hastily make their way to the new Kootenai County Building; to pay their property taxes before the deadline — Back to the Future.

3. Hearing Lance Armstrong might be in the race, participants hoped gal pal Cheryl Crow might be with him. Turns out it was NEIL Armstrong, celebrating his “moon” shot — John Austin.

Best Newcomer: Signage: Downwinders Beware! — Nosey.

HM: The husband and wife made a perfect nude cycling team. She was flat and he had a spare tire — Scott.

Hat Tip: Everyone, for a fine day of Cutline Writing.

Hagadone Sighting

Sightem: Berry Pickers continue to report that The Duane himself can be seen in the late afternoons and evenings pitching his $2M - $3M condos near Potlatch Hill, along the Centennial Trail. Seems he’s ordered an impressive deck to by built (which one Berry Picker said is nicer than most houses around here) so clients can get a feel of what their view will be like. It even has a wheelchair ramp. Huckleberries hears that The Duane seems to be enjoying himself, too. There goes Coeur d’Alene Parkway Centennial Trail.

Quick Fix 6 — 6/14/05

APhoto Fix: Rolf Mauch with the Golden Isles Lions Club helps put out the club’s U.S. flag display in honor of Flag Day on St. Simons Island, Ga., today.

Happy 230th: “On this day every year, soldiers around the world commemorate June 14 as the birthday of the United States Army, and remember when Gen. Washington established its standards of honor, discipline and professionalism. These traits have carried the Army through the Revolution, all of America’s wars since, and continue today. For Lt. Col Michael Schellhammer’s column about this event, click here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Wayne Stayskal (Expanding Patriot Act), Robert Airial (Howard Dean), and Henry Payne (Nursing shortage).

2. Humor Fix: Recent Michael Jackson late-night jokes here.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here and Word of the Day here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Jackson site hails victory as ‘historic’ here, Private groups often fund senators’ trips here, Memo suggests Annan oil-for-food link here, Boy, 4, dies riding Epcot attraction here, and Phil Jackson returning to coach Lakers here.

5. Medical Marijuana Fix: Many people were disappointed with the US Supreme Court’s decision against medical marijuana, but the Evangelical community wasn’t here.

6. Opinion Fix: Mort Kondracke/Roll Call (Negative Dean hurts Dems), James Pinkerton/Newday (Limousine Liberals and crime on rise), Cal Thomas/Townhall (TB or not TB), Phyllis Schafly/Townhall (Father’s Day), Andrew C. McCarthy/National Review (Michael Jackson).

Wild Card — Monday

An interesting day back at the blog and some newsworthy things to discuss re: the murder in Spokane and Michael Jackson. Now, I’m turning the blog over to you. Enjoy yourselves. And I’ll probably check in around 10 …

Inside Huckleberries — 6/13/05

Polish or blond jokes anyone? Hat Tip to The Heimlich Maneuver for passing along this photo of a, ahem, genteel Michael Jackson supporter.

*A coupla commenters complained they haven’t liked my use of “nazi” to describe regulators. I’ve used it on the meter maid who slapped a $50 ticket on my wife’s car for parking in a handicap space — that was already occupied. And for food police. Are they being overly sensitive? Or am I being too insensitive?

*My new western Washington blog friend, Josef/Josef’s Public Blog, points out why Spokane County shouldn’t be excited about U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell’s announcement that she won millions more for Washington’s timber country here. (BTW, I’m delighted that Josef has decided to keep on bloggin’ despite the outcome of the Washington guv’s race.)

*Huckleberries has it from good sources that we lost a second uberconservative to the infamous Tuesday Night Flame War a week ago. But a blog favorite will be returning in a week after a well-deserved vacation.

*So, is that vinyl I have of the “Jackson 5” from the 1970s more or less valuable now?

*Huckleberries Online finally broke thru the 30,000 pageview barrier for 7 days last week when the PV count hit 30,979. The previous best was 29,636 the week before. On Wednesday, blog pageviews went over 6000 for the second time (and the only time without the assistance of Brownie Boy), 6285, and averaged over 5000 for the following 2 days. Thanks for your continued patronage.

Exxon Gas Prices

So, why does the Exxon at Gummint Way and Appleway have the lowest gas prices in Coeur d’Alene — and 20 cents lower than Shell on Spokane and the freeway in Post Falls? It has the OK — and a better wholesale price — from its supplier to drop the price to compete with Costco’s gas prices around the corner. So sez the owner of both of the aforementioned stations, Del Kerr. The gas for the Post Falls station costs Del 10 cents per gallon more. Del sez the low prices at the Appleway Exxon won’t last forever. So you’d better fill up while you can.

Murder to Drink Coffee By

A bystander watched for about an hour before he drove home and brought his daughter back to the parking lot to see the young man, who was slumping out of the pickup with his left arm resting on the pavement covered with broken glass and blood — SReporter Tom Clouse re: the early-morning murder of a young man near a North Spokane Starbucks here.

SR Photo: Liz Kishimoto photo

Extra! Extra!

DFO … A verdict HAS BEEN REACHED in the Michael Jackson trial … and the verdict will be read at 1:30 this afternoon, according to Court-TV, which I’m watching right now.


Photo of the Day — w/Top Cutlines 6/13/05

At the premiere of “War of the Worlds” today in Tokyo, Spielberg, Cruise and Dakota Fanning. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines:

1. Tom Cruise is jubilant to have finally found a woman shorter than himself — Upclose.

2. In a shameless attempt to pander to young movie goers and promote his new film, A Few Good Teenyboppers, Tom Cruise introduces his 14 year old fiancee to Oprah Winfrey and her audience — The Heimlich Maneuver.

3. The winner over Mike Tyson by knockout……Dakota “Clubber” Fannnnnninnnnng — CrimsonW.

HM: Orson Welles

Question of the Day — 6/13/05

Issue: We had an interesting debate over the weekend, launched by my idea of changing the words re “about this blog” at the left of this Web page. I was considering replacing “conservative grouch” with “recovering conservative” because I don’t feel grouchy any more.

DFO: Like most folks, I don’t fit into labels easily. I’m a social conservative with a strong — and sometimes conflicting — human rights strain. I’m moderate to slightly right on fiscal matters. And green when it comes to the local environmental.

Question: Should we be more careful when applying political/social labels to people? And, for the heckuva it, how would you label yourself?

A Matter of Perspective

During the weekend, SR colleague Taryn Brodwater caughter her son, Bailey, 3 1/2, picking his nose. Taryn to Bailey: “Don’t pick your nose.” Bailey: “I’m not.” Taryn: It looks like you’re picking your nose.” Bailey: “I’m not picking my nose. I’m looking for boogers.”

Quick Fix 6 — 6/13/05

APhoto Fix: Reputed Ku Klux Klansman Edgar Ray Killen looks for his wheelchair as he arrive at the Neshoba County Courthouse in Philadelphia, Miss., today. Killen attended the first day of jury selection of his trial for the deaths of three civil rights workers in 1964. See Top of the News Fix.

Disclaimer: I’m not taking a position on the following — just providing a link on a controversial subject that will be buzzworthy shortly. Onward. In his new book, “The Truth About Hillary,” best-selling author Ed Klein claims that Chelsea was the result of Bill raping Hill during a 1979 Bermuda getaway. Hillary sez the book is further evidence of the vast right-wing conspiracy and is considering suing Klein. Click here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Paul Nowak (GM public image), Henry Payne (Washington, D.C., barriers), and Larry Wright (Howard Dean’s new message).

2. Humor Fix: A Howard Dean spoof (sorry, I can’t help myself with this guy) here.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here and Word of the Day here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Jury selection begins in ‘64 Mississippi deaths here, Senate to atone for lynching ban delays here, Morgan Stanley CEO Purcell to retire here, Video of Saddam’s questioning released here, and Spielberg sez climate is right for ‘War of the Worlds’ here.

5. Middle Class Fix: Seems all that wooing of middle-class whites didn’t do much for Demos. They lost MCW by a whopping 22 points to Dubya and 19 point to House Republicans. Click here.

6. Opinion Fix: New York Times (Pro-trade Demos AWOL), Richard Newman/US News & World Report (Rise of Chinese juggernaut), Diana West/Townhall (Quran desecration? C’mon), Paul Greenberg/Washington Times (Bolton’s filibuster), and Fred Barnes/Weekly Standard (Repubs winning ugly in D.C.)

Wild Card — Sunday (6/12/05)

One more day until Monday, Monday, can’t trust that day launches us into a new work week. Here’s your Wild Card …

Sunday Insider Question — 6/12/05

Do you see that note on the left side of the blog site here: “About this blog”?” I’m considering changing two words to reflect a change in attitude — replacing “conservative grouch” with “recovering conservative.” What do you think? I may keep the rest. Or change it to read something like: “Dave Oliveria’s blog is a quest by a recovering conservative to provide an interesting meeting place for varied readers of goodwill.” Got anything better?

WWJD w/Mayor West?

Issue: Newcomer KennyG raised an interesting question in the form of the well known WWJD — What would Jesus Do (with Jim West)?

DFO: OK, let’s forget the religion here, and whether Jesus was Divinity Incarnate as many believe, including me. You should know enough about him through Bible stories or reading the Bible to have an opinion here. WWJD now that West is claiming to be closer to God? My opinion? He’d love West. And order him to make what wrong things he’s done right. And resign if malfeasance was involved. And go and sin no more.

Question: What’s your call?

Wild Card — Saturday 6/11/05

Looks like Any Mouse and his friends are boycotting Huckleberries Online because they can’t tolerate Bearable Bob. Which is a shame. They brought much to this forum. But life goes on. And mebbe this gives me the chance to make some changes here that I’ve been mulling. Mebbe it’s time to transform this blog into a truly local forum and lose the national/international stuff that caused the afforementioned Mouse to flame. The pageviews numbers aren’t there for a truly local blog. But the fun is. Tell me what you think of that. Or anything else you want. Here’s your weekend Wild Card …

Saturday Question No. 1

Issue: Residents hit BNSF’s rails: Railroad takes hundreds on free trip; meeting on depot coming up/Erica Curless, SR.

Frum Helen Back: “My dear DFO, NEENER NEENER NEENER. You missed a really fun time. Regarding the 10-30 Castrol in my martini: While I’m forgiving, I’m also cautious. I didn’t have any of the bottled water or coffee on the trip. I stuck with canned Coke, just in case.

Question: Mebbe I’ve been too hard on BNSF. After all, it’s obvious it is trying to change its ways by spending all that money to retrofit the depot and then taking Hauser/Rathdrum residents for another ride. Do you think BNSF is busting its engines to turn over a new leaf?


Zogby: Wendy’s Favorite U.S. Fast Food: Taco Bell, McDonalds are runnersup/NewsMax.

DFO: McDonalds might be a runnerup, but it’ll remain first in my book, if we, indeed, land that $29 million Ray Kroc grant for a new community center. BTW, my favorite fast food is Taco Bell. Can’t beat the grilled stuft burritos.

Question: What’s your favorite fast food?

Wild Card — Friday Afternoon

The forum’s open if you have something on your mind …

Q & A

Question: There is an article in the CDA Press today (6/10/05) re: McEuen Field. It states that the city of CDA “… made its first purchase toward acquiring Tubbs Hill, and this future park site was included in that purchase.” Future park site meaning McEuen Field. I have lived in CDA all of my life and I was always told that Mae McEuen owned the property and gifted it to Coeur d’Alene with the stipulation that it had to remain public property with baseball fields because she was a strong supporter of the sport. Does anyone on your staff have any knowledge of the history of McEuen Field?

Karen Gravelle

DFO: McEuen Field was named in honor of Mae McEuen, a local grocer and community booster who was known for supporting children’s recreation and often provided treats after games. However, she never owned any part of the park, which at one time was covered with small homes that housed mill workers for the old Rutledge mill (site of the current Coeur d’Alene Resort golf course).

All Abo-o-o-ard for Choo-Choo Ride?

Attention: Huckleberries Online needs a report back on this afternoon’s BNSF choo-choo ride, from Hauser to Sandpoint. Check in as early as you can. And pay attention for possible Monday Huckleberries for me …

BTW, you can find the story about BNSF’s June 15 meeting with Kootenai County commissioners and today’s train ride, by Kevin Taylor/Inlander, here.

Best of the Northwest — 6/10/05

Miracles happen when the Vietnam War Memorial Moving Wall comes to town. See Item No. 5.

Two former Spokesman-Review reporters were working on a story that would have revealed that ex-FBIer Mark Felt was “Deep Throat.” But they backed away from it because of concerns about Felt’s declining health, according to Jim Camden/Spokesman-Review, here.

1. Freelance cartoonist Milt Priggee doodles re: Washington state taxes here.

2. The drowning of a scuba diving student 17 years ago in Lake Coeur d’Alene has now become part of the misconduct controversy surrounding Spokane Mayor Jim West here.

3. As Inland Northwest gays gather for OutSpokane Pride festivities this week, many have mixed emotions about embattled bisexual Spokane Mayor Jim West here.

4. Deer, coyotes and even salamanders may get safe passage across I-90, east of Snoqualmie Pass, if transportation planners have there way here.

5. Miracles occur when the Vietnam War Memorial Moving Wall comes to town. And its visit to Washington’s Tri-Cities was no different. When the half-sized wall was set up, veterans say they saw the image of a woman in one of the panels, looking like a nurse with her head bowed, here.

6. IMHO-NW: Danny Westneat/Seattle Times (Freaking out about the election), D.F. Oliveria/Spokesman-Review (Tax-evading Idaho representative), Robert L. Jamieson Jr./PI (Public breast feeding), Ed Sykmus/Inlander (“Mr. and Mrs. Smith”), and Jim Moore/PI (3 M’s HRs in a row?).

*Coeur d’Alene beat out Seattle, Tacoma and numerous other cities Thursday to become a finalist for a Salvation Army grant to build a multimillion-dollar community center here.

*The Seattle Catholic Archdiocese has settled four more abuse cases for $1.7 million here.

*U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings, a Republican from Pasco, Wash., is trying, with difficulty, to put distance between himself and embattled House Majority Leader Tom DeLay here.

Orbusmax presents the rest of the Northwest here.

Peanut Gallery — Food for Thought

re: Duane Hagadone’s assurances that the Blackwell Island project will be enviro safe.

I’m about as comfortable as I am with the EPA Super Fund Fiasco and how it has been handled. I wish I was comfortable with the Super Fund. On the one hand I want to trust the EPA (but just can’t) and on the other I want to trust the local opponents. What I have always feared is akin to the movie “Jaws.” If you recall the local Chamber of Commerce and Business Leaders refused to believe there was a shark eating people for fear it would scare away tourists. Food for thought…..


Quick Review: Summer Theatre Opener

2 of 3 stars from CDA Family Oliveria … Singing fabulous, but you have to like Rodgers & Hammerstein. This is no Smokey Joe’s Cafe. Voices: Top Notch. Piano Playing: Top Notch. Choreography: Minimal. Set Design: So-so. Male vocalists Robbie French and Jadd Davis are locals with superb voices. Dunno where the young women were from. But they could deliver notes, too. Worth the price of admission. BTW, Christopher Moll and Frank Whatshisname aren’t here this summer. But new young talent looks exciting.

Heimlich’s Song Dedications

Jim West:
“Cowboy Take Me Away” (The Dixie Chicks)
“My Boyfriend’s Back” (The Angels)
“Hit the Road Jack” (Ray Charles)
“My Guy” (Mary Wells)

Michael Jackson:
“I Know What Boys Like” (The Waitresses)
“Hot Child in the City” (Nick Gilder)
“Hand in My Pocket” (Alanis Morrissette)
“Super Freak” (Rick James)

Howard Dean:
“Creep” (Radiohead)
“Crazy” (Patsy Cline)

Charlton Heston:
“Happiness Is a Warm Gun” (Beatles)

Scott Peterson:
“My Cellmate Thinks I’m Sexy” (Cledus T. Judd)
“Guilty” (Barbara Streisand)

The Heimlich Maneuver
Oklahoma City

DFO: Wunnerful, wunnerful (as Lawrence Welk used to say). Anyone else?

We Landed the Kroc Grant!

Erica Curless’ story about the center here.

The word’s just leaking out that the city of Coeur d’Alene has landed a $25 million Kroc grant for a new community center. Stay tuned. (Photo above is of the late Joan Kroc, whose husband, Ray, built McDonalds hamburgers).

History: You can read about the Kroc grant (if the link to our archives works) here and an editorial I wrote about its significance here.

Family Phil provides a link to San Diego’s Kroc Center here.


Radio stations nudge oldies format off the air: The industry updates playlists for the iPod generation, alienating older listeners/Christian Science Monitor.

DFO: I’m resurrecting this one from earlier today. A coupla nights ago, CDADave dedicated a song to Mayor Jim West that, for the life of me, I can’t remember now. Mebbe a Simon & Garfunkle song. If I was dedicating one to Mayor RtBiGuy, it’d be something like The Beatles “Help!”

Question: Do you have a song you’d like to dedicate to a local politician or big shot?

Tough Day at the Office?

“Ramsey Elementary (Coeur d’Alene) had its year-end “Beach Day” today. … A carnival/fun day for the kids. Jean (The Cook) was one of the staff volunteers to climb into the dunk booth. Some of those little tykes have good arms!”

Hat Tip (for photos, text): Phil Corless/A Family Runs Through It.

Best of the Northwest — 6/9/05

Dressed in an ape suit, initiative pitchman Tim Eyman on Wednesday turned in thousands of signatures supporting his “900-pound gorilla” idea: performance audits of state and local government agencies, according to Rich Roesler/SR, here.

1. Cartoonists Northwest has selected its top ‘toon by a Northwest artist here.

2. On the Jim West front, the embattled Spokane mayor is trying to block a recall effort here, and Spokane Mayor Mike Connelly plans to release thousands of West’s office e-mails soon here.

3. The ripe stench of human excrement in downtown Vancouver, B.C., is getting stronger in downtown alleys, curling the stomachs of workers who no longer want to relax by the back door for smoke breaks here.

4. Grizzlies have been awake only 6 weeks and already the official list of bear dead has officially reached 6. That’s too many, too soon, according to an grizzly expert, here.

5. The Idaho Department of F&G is offering a free fishing day Saturday here.

6. IMHO-NW: Bill Virgin/PI (Trying to sell Spokane amid scandal), Joni Balter/Seattle Times (Rossi’s great positioning), Chris Peterson/Hungry Horse News (The thing about owls), Columbian (Let felons vote), and Doug Clark/Spokesman-Review (A golfing miracle).

*A Coeur d’Alene (Idaho) High student won first place honors in a national art contest with her drawing of a young Marine and his gun here.

*In Coeur d’Alene, hopes remain high for the two children who have been missing since a triple murder at Wolf Lodge Bay here.

*The sister of a Seattle Seahawk RB is going to prison for pouring hot oil over her boyfriend’s face here.

*225,014 signatures could trash Washington’s gas tax here.

Orbusmax presents the rest of the Northwest here.

Why Aren’t You Answering My E-mail?

We’re on Day 3 of the E-mail Crash of 2005. Hang in there. If you need to communicate with me, please do it through the blog. Or call me at the office. You can find the official SR message about this mess here.

A Sobering Cost-of-War Illustration …

… Is provided by Toadman/Synaptic Disunion here, plus his commentary about it here.

Yes, There’s Reason to Hope …

Shasta and Dylan are still alive, sez Bill McCrory/Whitecaps, here.

Question of the Day — 6/9/05

Issue: Hopes are high that missing Groene children are still alive: Father offers prized motorcycle as incentive for tipsters to come forward/Susan Drumheller, SR.

DFO: It’s good that people are continuing to hope and prepare for the return of the children. In particular, the actions of Fernan Elementary teachers and students to prepare for the return of Shasta and Dylan are commendable.

Question: Are you still hopeful?

Wild Card — Wednesday Night

Without fear or trembling, I present your ticket to tonight’s Wild Card main event …


Issue: Suit claims Boise schools owe grad a $2,300 trip for two to Hawaii for losing $40 silk lei/Bill Roberts, Idaho Statesman.

DFO: I can’t believe this one didn’t make the Web site. The stepfather here is teaching his tax deduction a valuable lesson about trying to rip off the system.

Question: What would you do with this lawsuit if you were the Boise School Board?

Wild Card — Wednesday — 6/8/05

Your afternoon Wild Card …

Dead SR E-Mail

BTW, our SR e-mail system is still down, so you might have to wait for awhile if you’re trying to contact me that way.

Best of the Northwest — 6/8/05

Workers at the Boeing Co.’s Renton, Wash. assembly plant work on the new-generation Boeing 737 assembly line Tuesday. As the Boeing Co. fights to reclaim the commanding lead it once held in selling and delivering jets — especially over France-based rival Airbus SAS — it is racking up orders right and left, and the narrow-body 737 continues to be Boeing’s hottest seller/APhoto.

The first legal test of a recall petition against Mayor Jim West will be reviewed today by visiting Benton County Superior Court Judge Craig Matheson. The judge will consider only that if the allegations are true, they would be sufficient to prove malfeasance or misfeasance. The hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. here.

1. Eric Devericks/Seattle Times looks at Demo Poohbah Howard Dean’s fund-raising visit to Seattle here. And David Horsey/PI rubs salt in Dino Rossi’s wounds here.

2. Washington Repubs believe the sky’s the limit for gubernatorial wannabe Dino Rossi after his fierce, narrow defeat in the election that almost never ended here.

3. Murder charges are pending against two Spokane teens who allegedly helped kill a friend for 2 ounces of marijuana here.

4. The teachers union is pressuring a school district in Kirkland, Wash., to evict from school property the congregation of a pastor who’s outspoken against gay rights here.

5. The Idaho Board of Education is proposing changes to the way universities and their fund-raising foundations operate, in the wake of the multimillion-dollar collapse of the University of Idaho’s attempted expansion into Boise, according to Shawn Vestal/SR, here.

6. IMHO-NW: Danny Westneat/Seattle Times (Dying seventysomething needs pot), D.F. Oliveria/SR (Hold BNSF depot accountable), Wesley Smith/National Review (Oregon wrong about controlled substances), Dan Popkey/Idaho Statesman (Ken Loudermilk: An Idaho original), and Susan Paynter/PI (When Marine recruiters go too far).

*Idaho’s going to allow Kansas fight for similar death penalty here.

*Oregon Senate committee OKs civil unions here

*A Tri-City Washington woman who was bitten 30 times by two dogs that killed her pet cat is facing possible surgery for nerve damage here.

Photo of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 6/8/05

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals protest in front of the Rhode Island Statehouse this week. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines:

In A League of His Own: Detective Thorn discovers the source for Soylent Green is not soybeans or plankton. “Soylent Green is people!” — Side Note.

1. “O.K., I found Carl Sr. Where’s Carls Jr.?” — Dave Tolle.

2. Grant Larson, manager of the downtown Cupertino Wendy’s restaurant, opens a recent shipment of chili ingredients — Family Phil.

3. Do you have blondes? — Upclose.

Honorable Mention: “Wow, they should really clean these things before they package them” — Gary Cuff.

Quick Fix 6 — 6/8/05

APhoto Fix: Madonna reads from her new book ‘Lotsa De Casha’ to children Tuesday, June 7, 2005 in New York. ‘Lotsa De Casha’ is the fifth installment in a series of children’s books by Madonna. See Top of the News Fix.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Paul Nowak (New job numbers), Gary Varvel (Follow the money), and Mike Keefe (Medical marijuana).

2. Humor Fix: “Pat Buchanan, Bob Novak and G. Gordon Liddy don’t like Mark Felt. Mark Felt is truly a great man” — Jon Stewart.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History (NRA picks Charlton Heston as prez) here, Today’s Birthdays (Joan Rivers) here, and Word of the Day (languor) here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Huge mudslides block Yellowstone route here, Madonna releases final children’s book here, Chainsaw killer welcomed to US here, Bangladesh Baptist leader beheaded here, and Senate gives FBI more Patriot Act power here.

5. Tax Policy Fix: In theory, higher corporate tax rates should decrease economic growth rates. Why? Because they reduce incentives to take risks, accumulate capital and engage in entrepreneurial activity, making us less wealthy over time. But is the theory correct? You can find your answer here.

6. Opinion Fix: Jules Witcover/Baltimore Sun (Dean disappoints Dems), Michelle Malkin/Townhall (Desecration of Ground Zero), Dick Morris/The Hill (Bad news for Sen. Byrd), Walter Williams/Townhall (Victimhood: Rhetoric or reality?), and Tony Blankley/Washington Times (Cheering Europe’s failures).


Issue: In S.F., Dean calls GOP ‘a white Christian party’: GOP ‘not very friendly to different kinds of people”/Carla Marinucci, S.F. Chronicle.

DFO: The more Dean shoots his mouth off, the more I believe he’s a Republican plant. Shoot from the hip … blow off your feet.

Question: What do you think of Howard Dean’s latest outburst?

Inside Huckleberries — 6/7/05

*Gas was still $2.06.9 per regular gallon this a.m. when I fueled at Exxon, corner of Appleway and Gummint Way. Anyone beat that out there?

*In case you were wondering, Joe Butler/Brand X never followed through on his plans for a blog because The Powers That Be were nervous about the liability associated with this medium. In a way, that nervousness saved Joe headaches. I can’t see Hagadonia granting any writer wiggle room to think/write freely.

*Commenter Doug Hughes raises some interesting questions about the separation between news and opinion at the SR in today’s “News Is A Conversation” critique. You should check in on the ongoing constructive criticism leveled at the SR online by Doug, Marianne Love and others here.

*Another SR must-read for news junkies is notes from our Daily Briefing, compiled by blogmeister Ken Paulman, here.

*Kootenai Valley News Press picked up my Tombstone Generator for the Boundary County Property Owners Association to illustrate its followup news story about the levy passage here.

*Finally, got the blog numbers that have been missing since Thursday. I missed by 3 pageviews of scoring three days with 5000 or more. Tuesday through Thursday: 4997, 5033 and 5118. Total for the week was a little off because of the three-day Memorial Day weekend: 26109. But the month of May set another record with 122,780 pageviews for a daily average of 3961. Thank you for checking in.

Question No. 2

Issue: Farming Out: Meyers brothers entertain offer to sell prairie land for development/Jerry Manter, Coeur d’Alene Press.

DFO: $20,000 per acre times 500 acres = $10 million — and the end of a family legacy. And the other hand, the grandkids won’t have to put up with the annual hassle of trying to burn their fields with everyone squawking at them. If the Meyerses sell, it’ll be the beginning of the end of farming on the Rathdrum Prairie. And we’ll live to regret it.

DFO: How long will it take for the Rathdrum Prairie to be covered with houses? And to you prefer open prairie with your smoke — or houses, without the smoke?

Bumpersnicker II

“If ignorance is bliss, why aren’t more people happy?”

Hat Tip: Susan Cuff

Best of the Northwest — 6/7/05

Washington state Democratic Chairman Paul Berendt, left, speaks during a news conference about the Democrats victory in the governor’s election challenge trial in Seattle today. After spending millions of dollars to overturn the election, Republican Dino Rossi actually lost 4 votes here.

A year ago, Carrie French celebrated her graduation, ending a busy year marked by cheerleading, dance and spending time with her many friends in the Nampa/Caldwell, Idaho, area. Now, she has become the first Idaho woman and 13th Idahoan overall killed during hostilities in the Iraq war, according to the Idaho Press-Tribune, here.

Rossi supporters can find a little Huckleberries humor to brighten their day here.

1. Freelancer Milt Priggee targets Washington’s indifference to the Amber Alert system here.

2. A fifth and final member has been named for independent panel that will investigate Spokane Mayor Jim West and his use of city computers and an internship program to solicit dates from young gay men, according to Mike Prager/SR, here.

3. Jeff Clement, a 21-year-old USC catcher labeled the “best power hitter” among college prospects was selected by the Seattle Mariners third in the first round of the annual Major League Baseball draft here.

4. Two 4-year-old Spokane boys remain in critical condition from burns ignited by static electricity after pouring gasoline on a slide to go faster, according to speculation, here.

5. Randy Mueller, a native of tiny St. Maries in North Idaho, has been named general manager of the Miami Dolphins, after stints in Seattle and New Orleans here.

6. IMHO-NW: Spokesman-Review (It’s time to put election behind us), Tri-City Herald (High court off base on marijuana ruling), Doug Clark/SR (Child killer got what he deserved), Kate Holloway/WSU Daily Evergreen (Dating etiquette of “calling dibs”), and Tacoma News Tribune (Spokane’s clingy mayor, free registration).

*A $175,000 jackpot means a Clark County woman can finish her education at WSU and, after 16 years of marriage, finally have a honeymoon here.

*Grizzly kills mountain cycling athlete near Banff, Alberta, here. And another grizzly was destroyed after killing 3 sheep here.

*Montana log truck drivers are rallying for higher wages here.

*The Pullman Alliance for Responsible Development has collected 7,500 signatures in an attempt to stop Wal-Mart from building a store in the Washington border town here.

Orbusmax provides the rest of the Northwest here.


“Politicians and baby diapers need to be changed often for the same reason.”

Hat Tip: Amy Crooks

Question of the Day — 6/7/05

Issue: Lawmakers dash to correct records of trips: More discrepancies discovered in wake of questions about DeLay/Washington Times

DFO: I get a kick out of the regular commenters who can see no wrong in their political side and plenty of wrong in the other. Both sides elect politicians who look out for themselves first and are quick to take perks and fudge rules. Tom DeLay is no worse that your average Demo who has been feeding at the public trough too long. And vice versa.

Question: What’s your reaction to the news that hundreds of congressmen have rushed to clean up travel expenses in lieu of the scrutiny of DeLay?

Wild Card — Monday Evening

Lots of excitement today with the big decision being handed down in Wenatchee and Republican Dino Rossi deciding to end his quest for the governorship — for now. You can talk about that tonight. Or any other subject your heart desires — just stay away from the flame wars. I’ll be watching …

Best of the Local Blogs — 6/6/05

*A 19-year-old Caldwell woman is the latest Idahoan to fall while trying to win the peace in Iraq, according to Betsy Russell/Eye on Boise, here.

*In his Wayback Machine, CDADave provides a photo of the old North Shore Resort, before Duane and Jerry engineered a hostile takeover from Bob Templin, and transformed it into The Coeur d’Alene Resort, here.

*Marianne Love/Slight Detour bids a sad goodbye to a beloved family pet here.

*Ya gotta check out Bearable Bob’s latest “Things You Don’t Want to Finger Sweep Out of Your Toddler’s Mouth” here.

*A Huckleberries Online discussion on taxes turned Herb Huseland/Bay Views mind to Boeing, the Vietnam War and Washington’s B&O tax here.

Bumpersnicker …

… on a big white Chevy truck by the Silverlake Mall today: “Have you driven over a Ford lately.”

Hat Tip: Jeanne Helstrom

Wild Card — Monday Afternoon

Gotta do my day job, folks … so here’s your Wild Card for the afternoon. Enjoy. I’ll be checking it frequently …

Question — from Dan of the County

I will be watching the outcome of Washington Gov’s election trial as much for decisions about the process vs. who “wins” or not. One of the recent reforms in the state of Washington is to allow for all-mail elections at the option of the county. It sounds like several counties plan to move to this option. Idaho allows for this on a very, very limited basis (precincts under 250). I would be very interested on both a personal and professional basis to hear if your blog readers think all-mail elections would be a good idea for Idaho and specifically for Kootenai County.

Dan English
Kootenai County clerk

Best of the Northwest — 6/6/05

Members of the water rescue team from Fire Station 2 get a hold of the canoe which was damaged when it hit an abutment under the Sandifur Memorial Bridge Sunday. A 7-year-old boy is in critical condition after being held under water for 20 minutes/Liz Kishimoto/SR. See first starred item.

A Chelan County Superior Court judge today said that despite evidence of numerous election errors, Republicans failed to prove those errors cost their candidate the race. Gov. Christine Gregoire’s narrow win over Republican Dino Rossi stands, the judge ruled. “Irregularity … is not sufficient to invalidate an election,” Judge John Bridges, reports Richard Roesler/SR, here.

1. David Horsey/PI looks at global warming “girly man” George W. Bush (?!) here.

2. 12 in Seattle-to-Vegas road rally ticketed, some for driving as fast as 120 mph, here.

3. Demo Poohbah Howard Dean, at Seattle fundraiser, tells crowd that the Dems can win 2008 prez race by copying Repubs’ ‘70s playbook here.

4. A dozen years ago, Bobbi Frank told her first graders that she’d pay them $100 apiece if they finished in the top 10 in their high school graduating class. That promise has cost her $400, according to the Missoulian, here.

5. Toni Hardesty/Idaho environmental director, showed she was up to the task when she forced BNSF Railway to shut down and fix its leak problem shortly after starting her new job here.

6. IMHO-NW: Joel Connelly/PI (Dean needs to get act together), Dan Popkey/Idaho Statesman (House Speaker on wrong side of hospital fight), Idaho Statesman (Save wild salmon), Gary Crooks/SR (Patient West backers could use some help), and D.F. Oliveria/SR (Pushing for Idaho property tax relief).

*7-year-old boy critically injured after being submerged 20 minutes in canoe accident on the Spokane River here.

*BNSF to explain depot fixes to Kootenai County commissioners here.

*Teresa Heinz-Kerry urges Albertson grads to fight for causes they believe in here.

Orbusmax presents the rest of the Northwest here.

Gregoire Wins!

“An election such as this should not be overturned because one judge picks a number and applies a proportional deduction analysis,” Bridges said. “To do so within the context of the facts of this case would constitute the ultimate act of judicial egotism and judicial activism” — Judge John Bridges here.

DFO: Surprised?

Photo of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 6/6/05

A woman puts vermilion on a female frog, sitting beside a male frog during a marriage ceremony of frogs at Khochakandar village, in West Bengal, Sunday. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines:

1. Said the male frog: “Yes, I’ll take you to be my wife, for better or for worse, until we both croak”. The female was last seen “hopping” a train — John Austin.

2. What happens in Khochakandar stays in Khochakandar — Bearable Bob.

3. The French Ambassador could not help but admire the legs of the bride and the grooms weren’t bad looking either — Gary Cuff.

Quick Fix 6 — 6/6/05

APhoto Fix: An unidentified man looks at a wreath as he walks through the graves of the American cemetery of Colleville-sur-Mer, northwestern France, earlier today. Veterans and dignitaries gathered in the French region that perhaps best symbolyzes the fallen Allied soldier to honor the thousands of fighting men who gave their lives in the D-Day landings 61 years ago.

“Follow the money” was the advice that Mark Felt gave Woodward and Bernstein three decades ago as “Deep Throat.” And that’s still true today. His daughter admits that, in part, Felt finally came in from the cold because he wanted to sell his story here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Paul Nowak (ACLU and Abu Ghraib), Henry Payne (Amnesty International), and Chip Bok (Deep Throat).

2. Humor Fix: “It was such a slow news day that Newsweek couldn’t find anything to make up” David Letterman.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays (Bjorn Borg) here, and Word of the Day (tangential) here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Court rules against pot for sick people here, Saddam faces trial for range of charges here, Court rejects women’s sports case here, Laptops outsell desk tops for the first time here, and Web sites, blogs can boost your career here.

5. “South Park Conservatives” Fix: Don’t look now, but there’s a nontraditional conservative movement gaining steam that eschews the PC, weak-on-fighting-terror negative left here.

6. Opinion Fix: Diana West/Townhall (Searching for accurate sex-ed info), John Leo/US News & World Report (All the News that Never Gets Printed), Star Parker/Townhall (In defense of Bill Cosby), Robert Novak/Chicago Sun-Times (Bush Can’t Control Congress), and Frederica Mathewes-Green/National Review (“Cinderella Man”).

Wild Card — Sunday 6/5/05

You regulars can sneak a peek at Monday’s Huckleberries column below this posting. You’ll probably recall some of the stuff listed therein, from last week. But it’s a little different format. So, I hope you enjoy it, while considering items for the Wild Card Sunday …

Peanut Gallery — Heightening Actors

re: previous comment about 4-11” Patty Duke

When “All the President’s Men” with Robert Redford was being filmed in Washington, DC, our office’s secretaries wanted to go out and try to get a glimpse of Redford when the fake phone booth scene at 17th and F Streets was shot. One of the women came back to the office looking very forlorn, so I asked if she had not seen him. Her answer was, “Yeah, I saw him. And he’s as short as you are.”

Another “shorty” is Chuck Norris.

One of the tricks set designers and builders use to make men look taller is to scale down the size of the set so the actor looks disproportionately large. That’s why our home was built by Mattel, not Greenstone.

Bill McCrory

Bumpersnicker …

… at Fourth & Best this morning: “God Bless The Whole World … No Exceptions!”

Hat Tip: Steve Sibulsky

Peanut Gallery — Patty Duke’s Height

She’s 4‘11”. But you should have seen her mother (my late grandmother) - she was even shorter! I’ll tell you, though short or not, don’t mess with those Duke women (my mother included) - they’re formidable!

Mike Kennedy/The Idaho Kennedys

Peanut Gallery — Neo-Acronyms

Let us begin on the light hearted side with some new meaning to some long standing and fairly well known acronyms:

DOS: - Defective Operating System

IBM: - I Blame Microsoft

CD-ROM: - Consumer Device - Rendered Obsolete in Months

WWW: - World Wide Wait

MACINTOSH: - Most Applications Crash, If Not, The Operating System Hangs

PENTIUM: - Produces Erroneous Numbers Through Incorrect Understanding of Mathematics

WINDOWS: - Will Install Needless Data On Whole System

MICROSOFT: - Most Intelligent Customers Realise Our Software Only Fools Teenagers

Brian Keatts

Best of the Local Blogs — 6/3/05

Cool photo nephew Mike Kennedy/The Idaho Kennedys snapped of Butch and Aunt Patty Duke Pearce at that St. Joe preservation fest this week.

Being angry is such a waste of time, like that day my car broke down because the garage elves grew weary of a diet of used crankcase oil stored in coffee cans and the garage elf queen “Caliperia” let them get drunk on a radiator full of antifreeze causing my car to later overheat and die on the Sunset Hill (not the old one but the current I-90 hill which I’m not sure is technically still the “Sunset Hill” but it’s what I call it), and when I punched the dashboard and jammed several knuckles it did not cause the tow truck driver to show up one minute earlier!Bob Salsbury/Random Shallow Thoughts.

*Herb Huseland/Bay Views blogs about learning he might have the Big C here.

*Bob Salsbury/Unbearable Bobness of Being posts a blogsonal ad here.

*CDADave recalls drumming for a band, called Flashback, which had its first and last performances at The Fish, east of town, here.

*Cis Gors/From A Simple Mind offers proof that men are bigger gabbers than women here.

*Amy Crooks/That’s Life. Life Goes On talks about the importance of “think” time daily here.

Stop The Presses!

The 2005 National Lentil Festival poster was unveiled last night. (BTW, I’ve yelled, “Stop the Presses” twice in my career — once at noon in Kalispell, Mont., when we learned President Ronald Reagan had been shot, and once at 1:30 a.m. in Lewiston when the Trib was the first paper to report that Demo John Evans had beaten Repub Phil Batt for governor. Whatever became of Batt anyway?)

Hat Tip: Phil Corless/A Family Runs Through It

TGIF Wild Card

Gotta put together The Best of Huckleberries for Monday, kids, so enjoy yourselves with this early Wild Card …

Mike Kennedy/The Idaho Kennedys Has …

… Started an interesting thread in today’s Wild Card that deserves to be run out front. (You can find his link here):

“According to the researchers, journalists are significantly more ethical than the average adult - eclipsed only by seminarians, doctors and medical students.”

Unfortunately, junior high students scored just below prison inmates on the ethical standards question. Let’s hope High Schools put more emphasis on ethics in future coursework!

DFO: Believe it or not, I believe, it’s true about journalists. I wished everyone had my bird’s-eye view of a newsroom. I may not agree with other journalists politically. But I’m astounded by the pains most of my colleagues take to put aside their biases and report the news accurately. I can’t attest for those on the national level or in broadcast media.


Best of the Northwest — 6/3/05

Idaho Congressman Butch Otter and actress Patty Duke of Coeur d’Alene are spearheading an effort to preserve 80,000 acres of forest in the St.Joe River Basin of North Idaho by creating a conservation easement here/Kathy Plonka, Spokesman-Review.

Lamar Outdoor Advertising/Spokane has donated billboard space on US Highway 95 to keep the faces of two Wolf Lodge Bay children, missing since the triple murder that claimed their mother and brother, in front of the public here.

David Postman/Seattle Times blogs the Washington election trial here.

1. David Horsey/PI looks at the downside of everyone suddenly being 10 years younger here.

2. State and local Repub leaders called on Spokane Mayor Jim West to step down immediately as a result of sexual misconduct allegations against him here. But West’s attorney sez he’s staying put to defend himself here.

3. Tri-Cities woman who risked her cat from the jaws of coyotes faces $12,000 in medical and vet bills. Sez she: “I didn’t want to let my cat go. It wasn’t going to end like that. When it was over, my porch looked like a ‘CSI’ crime scene — hair, blood and slime was everywhere.” Click here.

4. Penn Siegel, chairman and CEO of Spokane-based Potlatch Corp., led the Spokane Journal of Business’ Top 40 list of executive compensation for publicly traded companies in the Inland Northwest, with $3.9 million last year. Dennis Wheeler/Coeur d’Alene Mines is among the top 20, too. In fact, exec pay in the Inland Northwest surged 63% in 2004. Click here.

5. Idaho man sez seatbelt ticket may have saved his life the next day when he crashed at 55 mph here.

6. IMHO-NW: Spokane Journal of Business (West should resign), Doug Floyd/Spokesman-Review (Deep Throat acted appropriately), G. George Ostrom/Bigfork Eagle (Orphan foxes and red tape), Hungry Horse (Mont.) News (Enjoy, but also respect wildlife), and Robert Herold/Inlander (Reforming strong mayor government).

*A rare owl makes an incredible appearance in Glacier National Park here.

*Noncombat injuries kill Idaho Guardsman in Iraq here.

*Developer Marshall Chesrown’s vision of creating an 77-acre urban village in downtown Spokane conflicts with Spokane’s traffic plans here.

Orbusmax provides the rest of the Northwest here.

Easter Egg — Friendly Skies?

The Heimlich Maneuver, from Oklahoma City, sends along a link that calls attention to a method that would truly make our skies safer (need audio and visual) here.

Quick Fix 6 — 6/3/05

APhoto Fix: A boy stands during payers at the Sunni Um al-Qura Mosque in Baghdad Friday, June 3, 2005. At least 825 people, including U.S. forces, have been killed since the new Shiite-led government was announced April 28 here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Paul Nowak (Desecrating holy books), Henry Payne (Working vacations), and Mike Lester (Deep Throat).

2. Humor Fix: “A recent study has found that baseball players are among the most superstitious in all of sports. The most superstitious thing a baseball player does is not to pee in a cup on drug test day” — Jay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History (“Casey at the Bat” published”) here, Today’s Birthdays (Allen Ginsberg) here, and Word of the Day (niggling) here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Payrolls grow by just 78,000 in May here, Bosnian execution video shakes family here, Liberal media reformers call for “truth” over “balance” here, Poll: Only 39% view high court favorably here, and Demo operatives target Wal-Mart here.

5. New Conservative Site Fix: Campus Magazine Online is the only national student-written online magazine for college students that provides a national platform for student articles on current abuses and potential reforms in higher education here.

6. Opinion Fix: Mike Rosen/Rocky Mountain News (Shaky filibuster deal), Charles Krauthammer/Washington Post (Gitmo grovel), Myrna Blyth/National Review (What’s wrong with students?), Rich Lowry/National Review (Planned Parenthood perversity), and Ann Coulter/ (7 extraordinary Repub idiots).

Wild Card — Thursday Night

Got some trolls lurking out there, so I’ll keep an eye on the Wild Card tonight …

Hot Potatoes — to Mayor Jim West ….

…Or you can tell you they’re talking behind your back and aren’t wanted when:

1. The chamber of commerce wants you out.
2. Ditto for the convention and visitors bureau.
3. Ditto for the City Council.
4. Ditto for your own county political party.
5. You’re the butt of late-night jokes.
6. And a recall petition is gaining traction.

Can you hear us now?

If You’re Frustrated That KCSO Hasn’t …

… solved the triple murder/missing children case, yet, don’t be. These things take time, sez Bill McCrory/Whitecaps, here.

Best of the Northwest — 6/2/05

In Kootenai County, Idaho, and neighboring Spokane County, Wash., the real estate market is a seller’s one. See item below IMHO-NW.

Now that Spokane Mayor Jim West has appeared with Matt Lauer on the “Today” show, humorist Doug Clark/SR wonders what would happen if he turned to TV to redeem his rep-P-U-tation. Tongue firmly cheeked, Clark has “found” perfect roles for the beleaguered mayor on “American Idol,” “SpongeBob SquarePants” and “Desperate Housewives,” among others. Click here.

David Postman/Seattle Times blogs the Washington election trial here.

1. David Horsey/PI delivers another humorous middle-of-the-road toon today here.

2. Ex-Microsoft millionaires have pocketed their great wealth and gone bowling, among other things, as they experience life after computer software here.

3. Roda Bec, one of the lost children of the Sudan, survived a civil war, walking barefoot and naked across the Sahara Desert and 7 years in limbo as a refugee, only to be murdered by an ex-boyfriend while attending Western Washington University here.

4. Another close encounter with a bear in northwest Montana ends with the bear pushing up daisies here.

5. Animal activists were out for blood when a Spanaway, Wash., nurse appeared in court to answer charges that she poisoned her neighbor’s cats with antifreeze here.

6. IMHO-NW: Steve Huffaker/Idaho Fish and Game (Apology for fishing license snafu), Jamie Kelly/Missoulian (Dying in the woods), Idaho Statesman (Whistleblowers’ courage), Steve Kelly/Seattle Times (Good riddance to Koren Robinson), Tacoma News-Tribune (Weyerhaeuser rapped for market bullying).

*Drew Bledsoe, the Dallas Cowboys’ QB and ex-WSU Coug, talks to the Walla Walla Union Bulletin about the parenting skills that led to his pending induction into the World Sports Humanitarian Hall of Fame here.

*The housing market in Spokane and Kootenai counties continues white hot here.

*Boise’s $220.3 million Powerball winner remains a mystery here.

For the rest of the Northwest, click Orbusmax here.

Judge not, lest … the culprit deserves judgment

Avoiding judgment, or leaping too quickly to forgiveness, as a deep-thinking and devout friend of mine says, can turn us into enablers. We wind up allowing destructive behavior to continue. We’re the voters and the taxpayers of this city – we’re exactly the ones who must reach a judgment in this case. We can’t stand back and wait for the almighty or the court system to tell us what to think. We must grapple with this issue in our own minds and come to – here’s that word again – a judgment.

—Jamie Tobias Neely/SR (pictured) re. Spokane Mayor Jim West.

For the rest of Jamie’s terrific column, click here.

Question of the Day — 6/2/05

Issue: Developer gets revenge with billboard: ‘Welcome to New Jersey. A horrible place to do business’/Associated Press.

DFO: If I put up a billboard at the stateline, it’d say: “Welcome to North Idaho. I got here while the average guy could still afford it. Neener. Neener.”

Question: What would your billboard at the stateline say (for Washingtonians, of course, it’d be on the other side of the stateline heading into Spokane).

Told Ya So

Wolfinger won’t seek new term: Councilman cites ‘full plate’ in decision/Tom Greene, CDA Press.

DFO: When did I tell you that Wolfie wasn’t going to run — five or six months ago? That’s why you have to tune into Huckleberries Online (and get your family and friends to do so, too.) BTW, I’m still trying to unravel the mystery behind the construction of Councilman Woody McEvers new restaurant digs. Is The Duane involved? Inquiring minds want to know.

Wild Card — Evening Version 6/1/05

OK, boys and girls, with some trepidation, I turn another Wild Card over to you. I insist that the usual suspects behave themselves on the blog tonight and in the future. If you want to flame each other, exchange e-mails and go at it that way. All the rest of us are dog tired of your incessant flame-throwing. As for the rest of you, if you see the flame-throwers come out, don’t hesitate to jump on these guys. Your Wild Card …

Best of the Local Blogs — 6/1/05

Quinn Kennedy, Mike’s youngest, on Memorial Day

*Marianne Love/Slight Detour recalls her days at Sandpoint High mentoring budding journalist Erica Curless, now with the SR and a marathon woman, here.

*Bearable Bob/Unbearable Bobness of Being captures my feelings about middle-age, Glory Days, and blown ACLs here.

*CDADave has some thoughts for that doctor who long ago predicted he’d grow out of his hay fever here.

*Betsy Russell/Eye on Boise introduces you to an Idaho reporter who once asked Twin Falls native Mark Felt bluntly if he was Deep Throat here.

Amy Crooks/That’s Life. Life Goes On proclaims the importance of incorporating relaxation into your daily schedule here.

Who’s The Bard?

Is the Bard of Sherman Avenue Rick Maxey by chance? I’m not sure if I ever guessed him or not. Seeing as Deep Throat is now known, this remains the only great mystery of our time.

Mike Kennedy

DFO: No. BTW, does this mean that I have to wait 30 years before revealing The Bard’s identity?

Wrestlers Will Be Wrestlers

Didja hear the one about the disorderly conduct call that sent one of Bonner County’s Deputy Dawgs rolling to Cavanaugh Bay Marina at Coolin? Seems someone thought there was a fight in progress. But when Deputy Harris arrived to check things out all he found was a group of wrestlers who were staying at the resort wrestling in the grass. Eatcher heart out, Mayor West.

Wild Card — Early Wednesday

For those of you with ideas of your own, here’s your early Wednesday Wild Card …

Extra! Extra!

Clues lead murder investigation to CdA hardware store/Erik Loney, KREM2 News.

Hat Tip: Dan English

Photo of the Day s/Top Cutlines — 6/1/05

Filipino protesters display slogans to symbolize their disgust on new World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz during a rally in the country office of World Bank in suburban Manila Wednesday. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines:

1. Participants at the plumbers convention slip away for a few cold ones and a toast at the Caboose Lounge. “Bottoms up” — Side Note.

2. Paul Wolfowitz’s “Weapons of Ass Destruction” are finally found! — His Bobness.

3. The latest World Bank promo giveaway. Free Crack Spackle for all poor countries!! — Dave Tolle

Hot Potatoes — to the CDA chamber …

…for being railroaded by You Know Who to ask You Know Who to resubmit his downtown garden proposal here (This is the same tactic You Know Who used 15 years ago or so when he tried to resurrect his plan for hydroplane races — get the chamber to be his lap dog).

And here’s 5 reasons why I no longer support that memorial to The Duane’s parents being built on Sherman Avenue:

1. The space is way too cramped to do it right.

2. In a poll of 756 residents late last fall, Coeur d’Alene opposed the downtown garden 72% to 28%. The people don’t want it built on Sherman.

3. It’ll further congest traffic to the downtown and boat ramp.

4. The minute The Duane gets the go-ahead, he’ll begin plotting how to shake down future councils to limit access to the property.

5. Why should this town give The Duane a square inch of concrete when he wouldn’t give the town a square inch of his rocky beach last spring when everyone was begging him to do so.


Hump Day Quick Fix 6 — 6/1/05

You can find the Vanity Fair article about former U-of-I Vandal/No. 2 FBIer turned Deep Throat Mark Felt here (and pictured above). Bob Woodward confirming Felt’s identity as Deep Throat here. And the Washington Post editorial about Felt here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Paul Nowak (Real estate bubble), Monte Wolverton (PBS), and Steve Benson (John Bolton).

2. Political Humor Fix: “Michael Jackson is broke. According to ABC he is broke and can’t make the payroll for the employees at the Neverland Ranch. It’s so bad that tonight the kids at the dinner table said, ‘Llama again?!’” — Jay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History (Helen Keller dies) here, Today’s Birthdays (Marilyn Monroe) here, and Word of the Day (homogenous) here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Canada Red Cross guilty in scandal here, US captures former Saddam regime spy here, Iranian smuggling ring busted near Mexican border here, Dutch likely to vote against EU constitution here, and Expert: Obesity must be treated as disease here.

5. Harmful Book Fix: “Communist Manifesto” heads the list of the 10 most harmful books of the 19th and 20th centuries, compiled by a group of 15 conservative scholars and public policy leaders for Human Events here.

6. Opinion Fix: Kathleen Parker/Townhall (I don’t want to be Paris), Brent Bozell/Media Research Center (Believing worst about USA), Claudia Rosett/Wall Street Journal (“Nightline” needs an enemies’ list), Cal Thomas/Tribune Media Services (French chickens come home to roost), and Michelle Malkin/Townhall (Truth about Gitmo),

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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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