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Archive for November 2006

Coming Soon: SR to Release E-mail Exchanges … (Not so fast…)

… and Prosecutor Bill Douglas dismisses controversy as “a distraction.” (90 minutes?)

Update: After reviewing the messages and our options (none good), we’ve decided not to post the messages. Here’s the situation:

Of the 50 messages, a few have explicit photos embedded in the message. We can’t publish those photos (one shows a toddler’s penis). We also have a strong ethical policy against blurring or otherwise manipulating photos.

Some of the messages are completely innocuous. The rest of the messages only refer to attachments. Those attachments are explicit, so we can’t publish them.

We’ve also gone through each message to blur e-mail addresses for privacy reasons.

So, if we don’t publish any of the explicit images, and we refuse to blur, crop or otherwise alter them, all we’re left with is a bunch of forwarded messages that say things like “take a look at this!”

We decided that did not advance the story in any significant way. Ken Sands, online publisher

Parting Shot — 11/30/06

Minnesota basketball coach Dan Monson, right, answers questions, as athletics director Joel Maturi looks on, after announcing his resignation earlier today during a news conference in Minneapolis. Monson resigned Thursday, one day after the Gophers’ fifth straight defeat. Monson coached Gonzaga for two years until accepting the Minnesota job in July 1999. Click here. (AP Photo)

The line between ambition and overreaching is very fine.

Don Monson Idaho to Oregon
Dan Monson Gonzaga to Minnesota
Dennis Erickson Oregon State to 49ers
Dirk Koetter Boise State to Arizona State
Mike Price WSU to Alabama (I guess we’ll never really know)
Gerry Faust that high-powered high school program to Notre Dame
Matt Millen Football Broadcaster to Detroit Lions president

You just get that feeling sometimes that some people are better off and more productive in a job with less prestige. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. Lou Holtz: never cut out to coach in the NFL; Coach K: happy at Duke: seems to have no serious NBA aspirations. If I were Mark Few I’d stay put. I find the idea that he “should” go to “a better job” or “go up to the next level” absurd. Often going up the ladder is a major step down — Raymond Pert/Kellogg Bloggin.

DFO: Raymond Pert nailed it. In my small way, I made this decisions years ago when the opinion editor of the Tacoma News-Tribune called in search of a conservative bloviator. I asked him three questions: Did I have to wear a tie to work? Could I live within 5 minutes of the office? Is Tacoma as beautiful as Coeur d’Alene? Then, I made an observation: I have the best newspapering job in the state of Idaho. Can you beat that? I’ve never regretted remaining here.

Question: Are you happy where you’re at? Or are you looking for greener fields elsewhere?

Washington State Patrol Rescues UI BBallers

It was a tough night for the Idaho basketball team. After losing at Washington the team’s trip home was delayed when its chartered bus broke down at Snoqualmie Pass in freezing rain. A replacement bus didn’t show up, so the driver called the Washington State Patrol. The patrol says three patrol cars picked up 17 passengers and drove them to a hotel in North Bend. The Vandals were able to continue home this morning.

Associated Press

Top Cutlines — 11/30/06

Pope Benedict XVI, left, and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I appear at a balcony of the Ecumenical Patriarchate to bless the faithful, respectively in Latin and Greek, after attending together the Divine Liturgy in the nearby Church of St. George in Istanbul, Turkey, today. Benedict XVI and Bartholomew later signed a joint agreement. You write the cutline. (AP Photo)

Top Cutlines

1. BEN: Yo, brosef, nice hat. What’s the inscription on it? BART: I don’t know man. It’s greek to me! — Southwark Lad.

2. Proof that Liberace is in Heaven! — James Bond, and: Ben and Bart prepare for their world tour, ” Crusades II” — Paul L. Ferguson.

3. In an effort to appeal to a wider audience, The Pope was on hand to tape a very special Christmas Edition of Friday Night Smackdown in which he crowned “Bad Azzzzz Bartholomew” the new “People’s Champion” and Heavyweight Champion of the WWE. Bartholomew’s signature moves include “The Divine Drop,” and “Staff Infection”—his knockout move which utilizes the staff he is seen holding here — PDX Pup.

HM: JBelle

You guys. were. so. dang. good. with your cutlines. that I took the easy way out. and made my winners more or less a family affair. Way to go Kan ‘EWA. And everyone else. Funny. For the rest of today’s terrific cutlines, click here.

Prosecutor Douglas calls email release ‘distraction’

Full post here

“A distraction” is how Kootenai County Prosecutor Bill Douglas describes the public release of several sexually explicit e-mails exchanged between his employees. In an interview Thursday, Douglas said “the climate is fine” in his office, despite recent allegations of sexual harassment against his No. 2 prosecutor and the release of the e-mails, which included attachments with nude pictures of women, sex videos and a picture of a toddler with his genitals exposed. Douglas said he had yet to address his employees about the e-mails, which county officials said clearly violated the county’s policies on use of the Internet and e-mail. He said he thought it was evident to his employees that he had no tolerance for obscene e-mails and messages like the ones the county released late Tuesday — Taryn Brodwater, Spokesman-Review.

DFO: Just a “distraction”!?

Video Journal: A POW Survivor’s Story

Roy Weaver, center, of Coeur d’Alene, sits between Bob Robinson, left, and Bob Allen, during a Veterans Day celebration Thursday, Nov. 9, at Hayden Meadows Elementary. He tries to attend some of the elementary school Veterans Day programs each year. The local veteran tells of his days as a Japanese POW in SR colleague Jesse Tinsley’s latest Video Journal here.

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/30/06

Spokane Indians pitcher, Patrick Donovan, models the new Spokane Indians uniform at a press conference at the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture on Wednesday in Spokane. The new logo, shown in both English and Salish, was designed with help from Spokane Indian Tribe here/Jed Conklin, Spokesman-Review.

Hindu/Sagebrush: Demos fight Social Security private accounts because … they work here.

1. Cartoonist David Horsey/Seattle PI looks at the “spirit of the season) here.

2. Randy Stapilus: Idaho’s U.S. Sens. Larry Craig and Mike Crapo pay their chiefs of staff (Michael O’Ware and John Hoehne, respectively) most among the six offices held by Northwest senators here.

3. Kootenai County’s chief deputy prosecutor sent sexually explicit e-mails and graphic images on his county computer to two former co-workers, who have accused him of sexual harassment. One of the women also sent Chief Deputy Prosecutor Rick Baughman nude photos and sex videos via county e-mail here.

4. His incredible story of survival gained national attention. The Colorado man who cut off his own arm to save his life shared his story Wednesday with an Idaho audience here.

5. A city police officer accused of assaulting several women, then pulling one over in his patrol car and telling her to “shut her mouth,” has resigned. Police Chief Frank Garner accepted Troy Holt’s resignation Tuesday without public comment here.

6. IMHO-NW: Doug Clark/Spokesman-Review (Doughnuts for police chief), Bill Schneider/New West Boise (Why park visits in decline), Brielle Schaeffer/WSU Evergreen (Women aren’t perma-pregnant), Mark Nelke/Coeur d’Alene Press (NFL wannabe hones dancing moves), and John Blanchette/Spokesman-Review (Dan O’Brien belongs in track hall).

Online Poll: 38.4% of 292 respondents to a Seattle PI poll say that the majority of U.S. troops will be pulled out of Iraq in two to three years.

*Former Gonzaga University men’s basketball coach Dan Monson resigned as the coach at the University of Minnesota here.

*Sundance festival picks Seattle film on horse-sex case here.

*Tests fail to ID child’s skull found near Ritzville here.

*Situation in Baghdad disheartens Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski here.

Orbusmax Special: Protesters drive fur store out of downtown Portland after 112 years here (free subscription required).

Mike: What Did Landy Know, When Did He Know It?

Mike: The other thing I am concerned about is the former Chief Deputy Prosecutor Lansing L. Haynes was just appointed to the bench. How much did he know bout the scandels in the prosecutors office and what did he do about it?

DFO: I was chatting about Landy with one of my colleagues a few minutes ago, Mike. I doubt that he would have gotten the district judge appointment had this broken while he was still in the prosecutor’s office. That would have been a shame because Landy is one of life’s class guys. Good family man. Good human being. He may be the last one to crawl off the sinking U.S.S. Douglas without being tainted.

OrangeTV: Whither Goest Bible Readerboard?

OrangeTV: I noticed today on my way to work, westbound on I90 that the big infamous reader board sign behind the Christian bookstore on Appleway (you know the one: “He died for your sins” or whatever) had been replaced by a standard, modern billboard. That rickety old sign was there as long as I can remember. They only seemed to change the message on it once every decade or so …

DFO: Is the old Bible Book Nook sign gone, too?

Take 5 (or 6): How to Grieve Bowl-less Cougars

Item: WSU isn’t going to a bowl game this year/Cody Croghan, WSU Daily Evergreen

Six ways to cope:

*Cry
*Play video games (in particular NCAA Football 2007, featuring the Cougs from 2006)
*Create a Facebook group
*Root for Pac-10 teams in bowl games
*Watch the 7-0 basketball team
*Vote for Butch (who’s in the quarterfinals of capitalonebowl.com for top mascots)

Question: How are you going to cope w/WSU missing another postseason? (Long-suffering UI fans can also answer this one — and no snickering please)

Family Phil: An Office Full of Hypocrites

Original thread here

I hate hypocrisy, and what we have here is an entire office filled with hypocrites. One minute they’re condemning the kind of child pornography that inspired Joseph Duncan, the next minute they’re promoting that very thing by passing around a photo and laughing about it. … I’m trying to raise my children to obey the laws of our land, to respect other people, and to make good decisions in life. And here we have the very leaders of our county revealing that they do not have to obey the law, that they do not have to respect others, and that it’s okay to make bad decisions if they can get away with it. Well, you didn’t get away with it, and I hope to God that these people are never ever put into positions of authority again. Not only have you completely lost my respect, but you’ve sullied what little respect I have for other so-called “leaders” who are supposed to know better.

Family Phil/A Family Runs Through It

K-County Scandal: Elicit E-mails Spark Outcry

Full post here


Above: Rick Baughman talks to Prosecutor Bill Douglas during proceedings for Joseph Edward Duncan III, Below: Laura Bonneville/SR Photos

Kootenai County’s chief deputy prosecutor sent sexually explicit e-mails and graphic images on his county computer to two former co-workers, who have accused him of sexual harassment. One of the women also sent Chief Deputy Prosecutor Rick Baughman nude photos and sex videos via county e-mail. About 50 e-mails between Baughman and former victim’s advocate Laura Bonneville were released by the county Tuesday in response to a public records request from The Spokesman-Review. The e-mails – some of which include attachments depicting bestiality, oral sex and a toddler with his genitals exposed, among other graphic images – were also sent and received by other county employees — Taryn Brodwater & Erica Curless/Spokesman-Review.

Frank Sennett/Hard 7: All hell’s breakin’ loose in Kootenai County

Originally posted at 10:55 p.m. Wednesday

Parting Shot — 11/29/06

A spectator arriving for the San Antonio Spurs-Utah Jazz game signs a petition outside the EnergySolutions Arena before the NBA basketball game tonight in Salt Lake City. Protestors handed out glow sticks and gathered signatures to urge the dropping of the facility’s name — EnergySolutions Arena — for something else. EnergySolutions is a nuclear waste services company. (AP Photo)

Question: In this age of corporate sponsorship, what is the worst-named professional sports facility?

Eye On Boise: Those Durn Demanding Kids

Today’s Idaho State Journal had a story by reporter Dan Boyd on a talk by local legislators to the Chamber of Commerce there in Pocatello about their legislative priorities, and the lawmakers touched on the question of whether the state should create more need-based scholarships for college students. Newly, and narrowly, re-elected Rep. Ken Andrus, R-Lava Hot Springs, opposed the idea, saying he’d rather hold tuition steady than target aid at a select few. He didn’t stop there. As quoted in the Journal, here’s Rep. Andrus’ comment on the issue:

“I am not in favor of providing an education for everybody who wants one. When they get out of school, they’re going to want a job provided for them, too.”

See Betsy Russell’s blog here

Top Cutlines — 11/29/06


Photoshop/DanG

Jada Oxford-Tone, 4, leans down to taste the frozen snow as she takes a break from helping to clean ice from her grandmother’s car in a north Seattle neighborhood Tuesday morning. You write the cutline. (AP Photo)

Top Cutlines:

1. Little Jada thinks to herself, “I know what make and model this car is; it’s right on the tip of my tongue” — codadave.

2. From the “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” files, here’s the latest luxury, having your car licked clean by well-dressed children — Jesse Tinsley.

3.From the “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” files, here’s the latest luxury, having your car licked clean by well-dressed children — Transplanted Texan.

HM: RSPA

For all of today’s cutlines, click here.

Moscow Minidoka: Boise Greenbelt Is A Wonder

Moscow Minidoka: The Boise River Greenbelt is truly one of Idaho’s treasures. When I lived in Boise, I cycled 15 miles a day most of the year on that wonderful trail, and took longer rides on the weekends. Moving back to Moscow broke my heart, mostly because of my extreme fondness for cycling in Boise (I should throw a Shout-Out to the Ridges to Rivers system, too, with wonderful mountain biking, too). Moscow just can’t compete with that, although the new Latah Trail helps (if they’d just get it paved!)

DFO: You’ve really hit on something here, MM. It’s relatively easy to settle on the 7 - 10 natural wonders of Idaho. But what about the manmade ones? The Boise River Greenbelt definitely would be in there. And the North Idaho bike trails (Path of the Hiawatha, Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes, North Idaho Centennial Trail) should be, too. What other manmade places would be on a “wonders” list?

Question: Are BSU Broncos BCS-worthy?

Full post, plus links to columnists discussing this subject, here

If you only read certain sports columns on the Internet, you’d think that BSU’s football team spent the season playing teams filled with sixth grade girls. Poking fun at the Broncos, their blue field and their supposed pansy schedule seems to have become the new sport for those columnists on the Web. But as BCS announcement day gets closer, there seems to be more sports writers out there willing to give the Broncos at least a few props, like in article that ran in Tuesday’s Idaho Statesman where the author roots for the Broncos and advocates a berth for BSU in the venerable Rose Bowl. (The author wants to see a Western team play the best from the Midwest, which would mean a match up between BSU and Michigan in Pasadena) — Emily Simnitt/Idaho Statesman.

Question: Well, HBOers, are the Boise State Broncos BCS-worthy?

APhoto of the Day — 11/29/06

Jada Oxford-Tone, 4, leans down to taste the frozen snow as she takes a break from helping to clean ice from her grandmother’s car in a north Seattle neighborhood Tuesday morning. You write the cutline. (AP Photo)

SR Edit: Profs Don’t Need Permission Slips

Full editorial here

University of Idaho professor Dennis West is either realistic or extremely cautious. West, who teaches classes in film studies, has caused concern at the Moscow campus by requiring students to sign a “statement of understanding” before taking his course. His classes cover a range of controversial topics such as racism, torture, rape, child molestation, pornography and homosexual themes. He’s trying to protect himself from complaints from students who don’t understand that colleges should force them to think as well as instruct. West’s statements, according to the Associated Press, advise students that the films they study may contain material that is “morally, politically, culturally or otherwise objectionable, offensive or repugnant.” Some other professors have adopted a similar practice. Others, however, maintain that the signed warnings represent a slippery slope that could infringe on reading lists, syllabuses and, ultimately, academic freedom. Two powerful forces are in play at the University of Idaho: academic freedom and consumerism. Instructors should push their students to view life from other perspectives and teach them how to seek truth wherever it leads. Students, on the other hand, have become more sophisticated in their approach to education. They pay enormous amounts of money for higher education, some going deep into debt. They have a right to demand quality instruction. But they don’t have a right to unilaterally insist that professors change their offerings to suit individual biases — D.F. Oliveria/Spokesman-Review.

DFO: We discussed this one Monday. I appreciate your help as I sorted this one out.


Question: Are You Surviving Cold, Snow?

A pickup truck heads east Tuesday on the South Skagit Highway, dodging leaning trees and fallen branches. The highway follows the south bank of the Skagit River from Sedro-Woolley to Concrete, Wash. Several outlying Skagit County roads remained closed as county public works crews were kept busy cleaning trees and branches that crashed onto the highways under the weight of the snow. (AP Photo)

Question: Any problems surviving the snow, cold, so far?

OfCoffee: Coeur d’Alene Never Looked So Good

OfCoffee: When my wife and I decided it was time to move back to Idaho, I shared with her the fact that I was 4th gen Southern Idaho and would like to move back to my roots. Her response was “If you want to move to Southern Idaho, I’m your wife, and I’ll go with you, but it will be the MEANEST thing you’ve ever done to me.” CdA immediately looked like the best choice! And I’m glad we are here.

DFO: I have a similar experience. In my first 7 years of marriage, I dragged my poor wife all over the place in the pursuit of my career: Red Bluff, Calif.; Stockton, Calif.; Kalispell, Mont.; and Lewiston, Idaho. When the unsolicited job offer came from the SR in 1984 — I wavered. I thoroughly enjoyed working for the Trib and our home on Normal Hill. But I wanted to get back to writing. I was the Trib news editor (the guy in charge of putting the paper together). After days of wavering, I finally asked my wife whether she wanted to live in Lewiston or Coeur d’Alene. Her answer was the tipping point: “Let’s blow this place.”

CODADave: There Goes Another Landmark

CODADave: Another landmark disappears…I don’t know exactly when it happened, but I noticed that little barbershop building at the corner of 4th and Annie Avenue, which had been there since at least the 1950’s, is now gone. Lots on that block are being vacated, and it’s just another slice of old CDA is now but a mental figment of memory in the minds of those who’ve been around here a while.

DFO: I didn’t notice. But I walk by there all the time. I’ll try to remember to look.

Question: Which Coeur d’Alene/North Idaho landmark, now gone, do you miss most?

On TV Pundits

When I was a lad, the nuns told us, “Boys,
the emptiest barrels make the most noise.”

The Bard of Sherman Avenue

Napkin Notes: Winter Driving — Here We Go Again

This morning we awoke to new snow and a thin crust of ice all over the roads. In spite of the fact that we live in Idaho, where people are expected to know how to drive on the stuff, the first real snow is always accompanied by a sharp learning curve as the denizens of the city by the lake get their bearings. People seem shocked to realize all over again that driving the posted speed limits may render you unable to stop in time to avoid hitting the car in front of you, and that anti-lock brakes and snow tires are no substitute for caution on the icy streets. Slow and steady wins the race, the saying goes, and I was glad I remembered it today as I inched past several fender benders and a string of police flares around a white van mysteriously flipped over on its side — Katrina/Notes on a Napkin.

DFO: I’ve been running studless so far this winter — just to see if it’s me. Or you. No close calls so far, other than a fool kid in an SUV who took the corner too fast at Best & Honeysuckle, almost hit a telephone pole, and then gunned the four-wheeler out of the snow drift, laughing all the way. Locals are worse than newbies when it comes to the first snow and winter driving. They’re too cocky.

Question: Why are drivers so clueless when it comes to getting around after the first snow?

Top Cutlines — 11/28/06

Jeanine Mortiz, who said she just moved to Seattle from California, huddles in the cold at Qwest Field in Seattle Monday prior to an NFL football game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Green Bay Packers. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Top Cutlines:

1. Jeanine was pleasantly surprised to discover that Seahawk fans, unlike Raider fans at the Oakland Coliseum, don’t light each other on fire to keep warm on cold nights — RSPA.

2. Santa never would have let the missus attend the Seahawks game if he knew it would take her nine hours to get back out of town because of the lousy Seattle drivers — Deena.

3. Jeanine noted two things on her first NFL game: No one told her Qwest Field could ever resemble the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field in Green Bay, and that if Brett Favre’s last name is actually pronounced Farve, the fat guy next her just fatred — John Austin.

HM: A Token D

For all of today’s cutlines, click here.

Sick: Microwave Used to Kill 1-Month-Old?

Jon Paul Rion, attorney for China Arnold, not shown, is surrounded by members of Arnold’s family as he talks with reporters earlier today, outside Montgomery County court in Dayton, Ohio. China Arnold has been arrested on suspicion of murdering her newborn daughter. Authorities suspect a microwave was used to kill the baby who had a high body temperature here. (AP Photo)

Rockets Brain: Civil War? Or Questionable Sources?

There’s a major story breaking in the Blogosphere by Curt of Flopping Aces (BTW Marine and current LASO deputy). I guess it’s going to take street cop common sense to connect the dots as the MSM is not doing it. Curt was suspicious of the AP lede re the six Sunni mosques burned and the six Sunnis drug out of mosques and burned alive and started doing some fact checking. NBC has used this story in part in their decision to calling the Iraqi situation a civil war. The GWOT is all about perception and with the MSM in the tank with the enemy, the enemy is winning where they can’t on the battlefield. Anyway this story shows the AP is relying on questionable stringers on news stories out of Iraq. This is being exploited by the enemy in the War of Information. Don’t know if any print media have begun to ask the AP - Who is Jamil Hussein? See my blog for a summary of what folks are saying about this — Rockets Brain Trust.

DFO: I haven’t followed this one much, other to remember the original story in which Shiites were accused of torching six Sunni worshippers. Seems the right side of the blogosphere is abuzz that this might be an illegit story based on questionable sources. Newby Ron/Rockets Brain Trust has been following this blogosphere story that was first reported by Flopping Aces. RBT sent the message in the highlighted area to the Mark Fuhrman Show and several media contacts, including Huckleberries Online. You can find the link to Rockets Brain Trust here … the link to Flopping Aces here. Seriously, I have no dog in this fight.

Question: Let me know what you think.

Item: Lame-Duck Commish to Join Concerned Biz

Item: Kootenai County Commissioner Katie Brodie will replace Kelly Richards as executive director of Concerned Business of North Idaho Jan. 8.

DFO: Interesting.

Question: What do you think of this move?

Statesman Poll: Tobacco in Privacy Around Kids?

Idaho Statesman Question: Anti-tobacco forces are pushing for a smoking ban in private places such as homes and cars when children are present. How do you feel?

* For it
* Against it
* No opinion

Lewiston Trib: This Ain’t Namby-Pamby State U

Full editorial here

What’s with the Nazis putting all those people into ovens? Where are the talking bunnies? The brochure promised talking bunnies. Sorry, kids. You have the wrong school. This is the University of Idaho. You want Namby-Pamby State College, Home of the Weenies. Or maybe you should just go back to kindergarten. It’s safer there. Here in the real world, you might run across things that startle or upset you. Beyond unpleasant history, you may have to think about racism, poverty, sexual assault, child molestation, homosexuality, pornography and bad words. And worse than all that, you might encounter opinions other than your own — Tom Henderson/Lewiston Tribune.


Transplanted Texan: No to McGwire in Hall of Fame

Transplanted Texan: Mark McGwire, Tony Gwynn, and Cal Ripken will be on this year’s baseball Hall of Fame ballot. There are a number of candidates we can have a “do they belong?” debate about (Gossage, Mattingly, et all), but Big Mac is the big one - does McGwire belong in the Hall of Fame? I say no.

DFO: A ESPN poll of prospective voters yesterday shows that only 20 percent support his first Hall of Fame bid. Character is one of the elements that voters are asked to consider before casting their ballots. McGwire, obviously, has the steriod stigma hanging over his head. Others do, too, most notably Barry Bonds who’s threatening Henry Aaron’s all-time HR record. However, if character is an issue, a good case could be made for booting Ty Cobb, who not only was a dirty player but also possibly racist.

Question: Should Mark McGwire and other steriod-era players eventually be allowed in the Hall of Fame?

Question: Do You Have A Hair-Raising Winter Story?

Bearable Bob: That (1990) front hit the whole state of Wa … I was in Seattle at a meeting when it started snowing with lightning cracking at the same time … left around lunch time … took me 12 hours to get to Moses Lake where the freeway was closed. … subzero whiteout blizzard conditions across the whole state … I felt fortunate to have survived that trip … ryegrass grade was thick solid ice … semis jacknifed everywhere … I’ve never been more scared of the elements, except the one time we got lost skiing out of bounds on the backside of Mt. Spokane, New Year’s Day in 1973 and night came … but that’s another story ;)

DFO: I was never more frightened than the time I was headed back to Kalispell from Spokane, driving my young family around Lake Coeur d’Alene in a VW Rabbit. We were driving on the old Highway 90, which is now the eastern end of the Centennial Trail. For some reason, I accidentally tapped the brakes on a snowy surface, sending my car spinning 360s across four lanes of traffic. When we came to a stop, I was faced in the opposite direction. We didn’t hit anyone, fortunately. If we’d spun the other way, we’d have gone in the lake. It took a bit to regain composure.

Question: Have you ever had a hair-raising experience as a result of the winter weather?

AM Hucks: Christ Float Fallout Leads Chat Parade

Dunno if the Potter’s House was trying to spread its faith, shock little kids or anger grownups with its bloody portrayal of the crucified Christ on its float during the annual downtown Christmas parade Friday. But the church created a buzz at Huckleberries Online over the weekend and Monday. I share the opinion of anonymous Pam I Am who commented: “As an evangelical Christian, I am all for spreading the message of Jesus’ death on the cross, but that was neither the time nor the place for that type of graphic display.” Pam I Am wasn’t the only one who wondered if Christ portrayer Adam Stone suffered from hypothermia after being exposed to chilly weather for so long while wearing only a toga. Other comments included:

•”Looks like something out of a South Park episode” – Rainbow Sparkle Pony Angel.

•”Nonbelievers watch TV and see much worse on a daily basis” – Eric Seaman.

•”Maybe it’s time for Christians everywhere to get some backbone and start standing up for their faith instead of acting ashamed and playing politics with their Lord and Savior” – Mike.

•”My first thought when I saw the float was: ‘Isn’t it a little late for Halloween?’ ” – BC.

•”Why not do some sort of lawn sprinkler that shoots fake blood on the crowd? That will really remind all these heathens to keep the JC in Xmas” – Fourth Paddler.

•”Without Christ, there would be no Christmas” – CODADave

Wild Card/Monday — 11/27/06

I awoke this morning to find my wife talking to Amy Dearest in Rome. On three consecutive weekends, AD has been in Austria, Paris and Dublin. She’s also visited London, Venice and Tuscany during her semester abroad. Amazing. Here’s a kid who used to get lost driving from one side of Coeur d’Alene to the other. Now, she’s talking about the Louvre and the various plays, with original casts, in London. Am I the only parent who believes his kids are light-years ahead of his experience at their age. You can use this Wild Crowd to brag about your urchins — or to start your own post-Thanksgiving threads …

Idaho’s 7 Wonders, According to Statesman

Issue: The Idaho Statesman has unveiled the state’s “7 Wonders”: Snake River, Lochsa and Clearwater rivers, Sawtooths, North Idaho’s great lakes, Owyhee Canyonlands, Craters of the Moon, and the Frank Church River of No Return/Salmon River here.

More Info: The Statesman also provided a poll that asked: “Which of the Seven Wonders is your favorites” — to which 52% of 1303 responded: The Sawtooths here. That proves, of course, that the Statesman and the poll respondents are southern Idaho myopic and rivercentric. The Great Lakes of North Idaho ranked at the bottom with 5%. Amazing.

Question: What do you think of the Statesman’s “wonders”?

Top Cutlines — 11/27/06

Eighteen-month-old Olivia Rose peers out of one of the kennels next to Basset Hound, Daisy Mae, while visiting her veterinarian mother, Dr. Bev Cappel, at her clinic, Wednesday, in Chesnut Ridge, N.Y. Olivia briefly eluded her mother, who was speaking to a visitor, and wandered into the kennel and closed the door on her own. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

Top Cutlines

1. “I peed on a guy’s leg. What are you in for?” “Woof!” — A Token D.

2. Daisy Mae, still trying to get adopted, now understands how child actors steal all the attention — Paul L. Ferguson.

3. Experiencing her first gated community — Not Right.

HM: RSPA and JohnA

For all of today’s clever cutlines, click here.

Q: Should College Profs Require Permission Slip?

Issue: UI prof’s warning triggers debate: Statement cautions students about possibly offensive topics/Associated Press

More Info: A University of Idaho professor’s requirement that students sign a “statement of understanding” before taking his courses is being adopted by some of his colleagues, but others worry the approach could threaten academic freedom. Dennis West, who teaches courses in film studies, asks students to sign the statement before attending classes that can cover such topics as racism, torture, rape, child molestation, pornography and homosexual themes.

DFO: I’m going to write an editorial about this one and would appreciate your thoughts.

Question: Has Prof West gone too far?

Paulman: Where Are Best House Light Displays?

OK, all you budding Clark Griswolds, we know you’re out there. But we want to know where you live. We’re trying to track down the Inland Northwest’s best holiday lights displays, so if you’ve got a blueprint for sending your power meter into overdrive, tell us about it. If you know a few spots that always have don’t-miss decorations, tell us about those, too. Once we’ve got enough addresses, we’ll put up the list. You bring the hot chocolate — Ken Paulman/SR Features Editor.

You can find the form for listing the best light displays in North Idaho and the Inland Northwest here.

BTW, don’t forget to share your nominees for best light displays with Huckleberries readers in the comments section.

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/27/06

The Capitol Christmas Tree is hoisted on the West Front of the Capitol in Washington today. The 65-foot Pacific Silver Fir was harvested from the Olympic National Forest in the northwest corner of Washington state. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Palousitics: WSU College Repubs plan press conference Tuesday here, Hannity & Colmes “nutty professors” here, and you can find one WSU prof who isn’t nutty here.

1. Faced with the reality that 48 percent of this year’s high-school juniors haven’t passed the math section of a state test required for them to graduate, Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire today proposed a three-year delay in the requirement here.

2. Call it recreational robbery: An out-of-state resident sets up a dummy company in Montana, buys a motor home under that company name and escapes tens of thousands of dollars in sales taxes. And there is nothing illegal about it here.

3. Ron Kress, one of the most successful high school basketball coaches in Idaho history, was killed last week when he was hit by a truck while chasing a loose cow on a highway near his family’s ranch here.

4. A Boise man went up to Boise County on Sunday to cut down a Christmas tree and ended up rescuing a kayaker who was pinned against a rock in the frigid waters of the Payette River north of Horseshoe Bend here.

5. The Kootenai Medical Center’s North Idaho Cancer Center will begin offering some patients the option of taking part in trials of experimental cancer drugs, starting in January, here.

6. IMHO-NW: Rebecca Nappi/Spokesman-Review (Knowing death is knowing life), Bert Caldwell/Spokesman-Review (For China, hard cash buys political capital), Frank Sennett/Blogspotter (Battle of celeblogging stars), and Rich Landers/Spokesman-Review (No lie: The fish was huge).

Online Poll: 67% of 317 respondents to a Helena Independent-Record poll say the U.S. shouldn’t reinstitute the draft, a proposal being pushed by Democratic U.S. Congressman Charles Rangel.

*Surgery-aided Spokane Valley teen drops 183 pounds here.

*Spokane man more interested in burglar’s arrest than keeping pot stash from cops here.

*Walla Walla prisoner beaten to death here.

*Boise State moves up to No. 9 in USA Coaches/Harris polls, its highest national ranking ever here. Brian Murphy/Statesman: Keep Coach Chris Peterson comfy here.

Orbusmax Special: Condi beats Hillary in “most powerful woman” poll here.

APhoto of the Day — 11/27/06

Eighteen-month-old Olivia Rose peers out of one of the kennels next to Basset Hound, Daisy Mae, while visiting her veterinarian mother, Dr. Bev Cappel, at her clinic, Wednesday, in Chesnut Ridge, N.Y. Olivia briefly eluded her mother, who was speaking to a visitor, and wandered into the kennel and closed the door on her own. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

SR Edit: Idaho Demos Moved Ball Up the Field

Complete editorial here

Most commentators would say Idaho Democrats were routed earlier this month as they attempted to regain a semblance of respectability. While Democrats made huge gains in Congress and in state and legislative elections nationwide, Idaho Democrats lost every statewide race. Sure, Boise and half of Ada County turned, as Democrats made headway in the state’s capital, but Idaho kept its reputation as one of the reddest states in the country, if not the reddest. No one would blame Idaho Democrats for being depressed by the results and for deciding to quit looking for weaknesses in the monolithic state Republican machine. However, key Democrats aren’t quitting. Challengers Larry Grant and Larry LaRocco have said that they are ready to run again. LaRocco has his eye on the U.S. Senate seat held by Larry Craig. Grant is interested in a rematch with Representative-elect Bill Sali. Democrats can find solace in this. They can also find a moral victory in what they accomplished below the radar screen — D.F. Oliveria/Spokesman-Review.

Question: Are Idaho D’s within striking distance of becoming a factor in state politics again?

Wondering: North Idaho Snowfall Is Nothing

Wondering: Although I’m a proud SoCal native, I lived for 13 years in New England before coming here. These puny little snows are nothing more than poses for Christmas cards. Try 30 inches standing for the entire winter. Berms on either side of your drive that turn it into a snow tunnel. And, not to be forgotten, the mountain at the far end of your drive from all the plowings. My drive was 150 yards long…that is a lot of snow. Uhhh … I think I can handle driving in this bit of snow dust.

DFO: After spending 5 years in northwest Montana, only a coupla winters in my 24 years in northern Idaho have impressed me as “tough.”

Question: How do you rate our winters? Have you experienced worse?

STCG: Where Are the Snowplows?

Stopthecrazygrowth (filed at 5:32 a.m.): Well, here it is about 20 hours since the snow began and here in Hayden on my street which has existed since the 70s, still no snow plows. About 4-5 years ago we would have been bladed twice by now. You don’t suppose it has anything to do with too many new roads and too few dollars to maintain city services ..? I’d be curious to hear from others on this issue - how is your plowing in the last few winters compared to the past. Is our area going to become another Spokane when it comes to street maintenance as we grow our citizenry beyond our infrastructure capacity. Is this yet another example of growth not paying for itself?

Thom George (filed at 8:13 a.m.) : My two block long, subdivision side street was plowed this morning between 7:35 and 8:00; I’ve lived on this street for 2+ years and that seems to me to be about an “average” time frame from first snow to clearing.

DFO: Thom, consider yourself lucky. I’m on the extreme end of the plow schedule. It generally takes more than two days to get plowed when a bad storm comes in. Sometimes 2 1/2.

Question: How long does it take for the plows to reach your home?

AM Hucks: Ex-Hagadone Journalists Count Off

We put together an all-star team of ex-Hagadone newspaper journalists at Huckleberries Online (HBO) last week. Yeah, yeah, we didn’t have anything better to do during Turkey Week. The final product was impressive. Did you know that L.A. Times/ESPN sports columnist T.J. Simers cut his teeth at the Coeur d’Alene Press? In fact, Simers made Brand X lore by trying to establish if Duane Hagadone existed. He tried several different ways to verify Hagadone’s existence before finally cornering him in a hotel hallway. Simers made the HBO Ex-Hagadone Newspaper All-Stars as the sports editor, with Dave Boling (Tacoma News Tribune), Jim Meehan (Spokesman-Review) and Dale Grummert (Lewiston Tribune) as his assistants. Other ex-Hagadonites named to the team by prospering elsewhere, and their team positions, include: editor/columnist – Doug Clark; news editor – Ric Clarke; copy editor – Mike Feiler; City Hall reporter – Keith Erickson; courthouse reporter – Erica Curless; cops/courts reporter – Taryn Brodwater; education reporter – Shawn Vestal; reporters – David Bond, Oliver Staley, Bill Graves, Brent Andrews, Jeff Sele, Sara Leaming and Susan Cuff; business editor – Bart Smith; business columnist – Nils Rosdahl; photographers – Dan Hyde and Lance Murphey; editorialist – Me? Public relations – Jim O’Day, the young man I hired as my sports editor at the Kalispell Daily Inter Lake in 1980 who is now the University of Montana athletic director. No Hagadone publisher was considered journalism-minded enough to be nominated

Wild Card/Sunday — 11/26/06

I was out checking out cars Saturday at three local dealerships — Subaru, Honda and Toyota. I’m not good a dickering. But I have one valuable asset as a buyer in my arsenal: I don’t get star-struck by an automobile. The hottest car I ever had, a 1968 convertible Camaro, almost cost me my education four decades ago. I finally had to let it go to my sister because I couldn’t afford the payments and go to school at the same time. I wound up riding a bike to school and work. Life without a car payment was wonderful. I’ve never forgotten that lesson. When a salesman who’d made a pretty fair deal asked today if I was ready to drive a pretty sweet car off his lot, I said: No way. He was taken back further when my answer in the negative to his next question, too: Aren’t you in love with that car? I’ll probably have a nice car to pick up my urchins from the airport this Christmas season. But, then, mebbe not. Now, for your Wild Card …

CDA Press Poll: How Much Will You Spend on Xmas?

Question: This Christmas, I expect to spend this amount on presents:

* Bah, humbug!
* Under $250
* Under $500
* More than $500

DFO: Easily more than $500, alas.

Question: What do you want for Christmas?

LDemoII: Californians Bringing in Gated Communities

LastdemoinIdaho: C’mon guys. You should know where all these gated communities come from…they are migrant ideas from So.Cal. Even the most entry level new development down here are gated. People won’t buy a house that is just out in the open! It’s no different than putting gutters on the eaves. Gates sound cool in the ads, even if the gates are rarely closed, and any thief with an IQ of 50 can get in. I am “wintering” in a gated RV resort in the Cochella Valley (where Duane has his shack), and my friend was just robbed last night while he ate turkey in San Diego. Gates have become a standard feature down here. And you know where most of our newcomers are coming from … they are comfortable with gates, and they want them!!

DFO: Last Demo In Idaho, is one of those top-notch individuals known only to me who make this blog the place to be online in North Idaho for exchanging ideas. I’m delighted that he’s come onboard. Here, he’s responding to a question from Ziggy Friday morning: Where did gated communities come from?

Bob: We Forgot About Velociraptors in Iraq

Bearable Bob: I used to call it “Jurassic Iraq” to make the analogy of the central precept of the movie Jurassic Park which is you think you can control and predict factors and contain the possible extreme damage of chaos and natural disorder. But, as in the movie, it’s a false belief. The neocons through it would be a cakewalk. Hugs and candy and flowers and parades in Baghdad. But the Velociraptors had babies. The predators got busy. Fareed tends to be of the former “Iraq the Model” camp of delusions and he’s trying to hang onto keeping the Velociraptors behind the electric fence. But boy, those suckers can jump.

DFO: Of course (head slap), we forgot to figure in the “chaos theory.” Actually, I like this post very much. Not only is it creative, but it might be closer to the truth that war supporters want to admit. Not sure who Fareed is, in this instance. But I know that Iraq the Model is a blog from Iraq that has been on the U.S. side since the beginning of the war. Compelling read, Bob.

Spectator: Whazzup w/Crucifixion in Holiday Parade?

Spectator: Did anyone go to the parade in Coeur d’alene tonight? Besides being too long with too many entrants with few or no lights and about ten too many Santa Claus’, there was a huge trailer with a homey fireplace scene and a family with a sign on the side that said “the greatest gift of all”. As it passed by the crowd was stunned to see a man in the role of Christ on the cross. He was covered in blood and “nailed” to the cross. It was startling.

DFO: I didn’t think the parade was too long. It had too much air in it. There were literally three blocks of space or more between the Red Hot Mamas and the entry in front of the RHM — so much space that many thought the parade had ended and began swarming to the Coeur d’Alene Resort lawn where the resort carolers were warbling their first song. The entries were above average for the most part. I didn’t know what to think of that Potters House parade entry described above, with a partition separating the homey scene from a portrayal of the crucified Christ on the back of a partition. A friend who has a little daughter was hosed re: the bloody image. He thought a nativity scene would have been more appropriate, given the season. It’s the second time a church group — mebbe the same one — has entered a float with this type of message (that I know of). I don’t know whether to give The Potters House props for having the guts to share the Gospel story in an over-the-top manner. Or write them a letter questioning the appropriateness of its float entry with so many young children in the audience.

Question: What did you think of the Potter’s House float?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/24/06

Cameraman reports: So my morning started rather early this morning as I was once again part of the local media during all the black friday sales started. I got up at 3:30 to head into town and I passed by Circuit City where I stopped for a few and there there people that got into line starting at 4:30 Thu afternoon. Cameraman snapped the shot above and finishes his report here.

*Raymond Pert/Kellogg Bloggin’ remembers the Thanksgiving that his wife’s ex decided to ask for an invitation and that “Gratitude Is An Attitude” monologue that came with it here.

*Family Phil/A Family Runs Through It is in a quandry about Christmas gifts for his kids. He has some suggestions of gifts that’ll attract attention while most others are collecting dust here.

*” … when it comes to getting up at 2 a.m. on the Friday after Thanksgiving to join the crowd of overfed, under-rested humanity pushing and shoving outside the Wal Mart door, you’re never, ever gonna find me anywhere in the vicinity” — Marianne Love/Slight Detour here. Attagirl.

*Bill McCrory/Whitecaps zeroes in on that “message poisoning” sent by the remnants of the old Soviet Union to increasingly vocal dissidents and defectors here.

*Sue Turner/Tumblewords, our resident poet, treats us to the “Short Tale of a Long-Haul Trucker” here.

*CODADave/Atmospheric Ruminations is trying to figure out what to do with his blog after he moves from Coeur d’Alene here.

Kenny Kramer: The Real “Seinfeld” Kramer

Kenny Kramer, the real-life inspiration for the “Seinfeld” character Kramer, addresses reporters in this 2001 file photo in New York. Kramer who is the role model for the “Seinfeld” character has been interviewed numerous times after actor Michael Richards made headlines last week with a racist rant in a Los Angeles comedy club. (AP Photo/Tina Fineberg, FILE)

Geri Douglas: Quit Picking on Prosecutor Hubby

Complete Coeur d’Alene Press letter to the editor here

This responds to your monthly dose of malicious, personal attacks on my husband, prosecutor Bill Douglas, in your editorials dated Oct. 12 and Nov. 12. I have been married to Bill for 33 years and we have raised our three sons here in Kootenai County. Bill has loyally served our community as elected prosecutor for 18 years. He is a loving husband, parent, grandparent and an ethical, fair-minded prosecutor. You owe Bill Douglas an apology. You accused him of having a personal agenda in prosecuting the worst killer in recent memory and criticized him for standing his ground in demanding that Joseph Duncan face a death penalty jury here in Kootenai County. Bill ignored your demand that he, “cut and run,” and he quietly got a better deal for the victims that virtually guaranteed a death sentence. Your Spokane competitor newspaper praised Bill for quietly brokering this deal. But, Mr. Patrick, I know you won’t apologize for consorting with Duncan’s lawyers and obstructing the prosecution of a killer. Don’t lecture us or the public about e-mails. Don’t harm my family any more by accusing him of having an affair where none existed — Geri Douglas/Hayden
.

DFO: Unfortunately, for the long-suffering Geri Douglas, this isn’t going to go away until those private e-mails are released. Now, we’re being blocked by the county from obtaining the office e-mails of Deputy Prosecutor Rick Baughman.

Hat Tip: Mike

Quotable Quote — 11/24/06

“We’re convicts and there’s a code thing, you know it. We’ll usually help people.”

Don Delesdernier, a Kootenai County inmate who took credit for planting the idea with William Caldwell that Caldwell should kill a teen relative to keep her from testifying against him in a rape case.

APhoto of the Day — 11/24/06

Tug, a three-year old Border Collie, appears to ride a skate board while playing with his owner, Thursday in Montgomery, Ala. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Rob Carr)

Lewiston Trib: Gibson, “Kramer” Belong in Same Camp

Full editorial here

Poor Michael Richards. The actor best known — perhaps only known — for playing Kramer on “Seinfeld” just lost his career because he lost his temper. Rattled by hecklers during his stand-up comedy routine, Richards responded to the black audience members with a tirade laced with the n-word and other obscenities. And just to prove himself an even bigger ass, he described — in equally explicit language — what might have happened 50 years ago to black people who dared to heckle a white performer. Richards has since apologized, of course. He didn’t mean to say those horrible things. He’s not a racist. He just lost his temper. Right. And Mel Gibson wears a yarmulke — Tom Henderson/Lewiston Tribune.

Question: Do you think Mel Gibson and Michael Richards are racists — or simply actors who lost their cool as a result of heckling/booze and deserve another chance?

Ziggy: What’s With All NIdaho’s Gated Communities?

Ziggy: From someone who was born in Spokane, grew up in SE Spokane County and spent their entire adult life in Kootenai County, I am mystified by all of the “gated communities.” As Robert Frost might say, “what are you walling out, or walling in?” What ARE they walling out? A wandering lumberjack, a night travleing coyote, a stray housecat, or perhaps an Idaho native? Are they afraid of us? Are they afraid of wild animals? The walls won’t keep weather out. As I said, I am mystified. And as for the armed guards at Geezer Ranch (a term of affection coined by locals), what’s that all about? I also wonder when these millionaires check themselves into a local nursing home, which will eat up all their $$$, will their kids be able to keep these mansions heated on their $5 an hour jobs here in Kootenai County?

DFO: I love that description: “Geezer Ranch.” As far as gated communities go, you have a good point. Who are they trying to wall out — the $5.15 an hour hired hands who flip the burgers of their fast-food shops, change the sheets in their hotels, and manage the cash registers in their stores? I’m just glad they’re far enough out of town that they don’t clog up our roads (any more than they already do) with their Hummers.

D.P. Bond: DFO’s Hagadone Papers All-Star Team

DFO’s All-Star Team here

David Bond: Ah, Ollie, you’re draggin’ up ancient memories here. However, I may hold the record at three (count ‘em, 3) stints at the CdA Press. My recollections of the news staff there are still fond; especially Keith Erickson, Sandi Broadwater, Amos Clark, Ric Clarke, Shawn Vestal, etc. etc., and I hold a high degree of respect for Mike Patrick, a true gentleman. T.J., the sports editor who’d departed just before I was hired for the 1st time (by high-school chum Clark) in ‘78, was a piece of work. He began to believe that Duane Hagadone was merely a figment of Corporate’s imagination and set out to divine whether demur Duane actually existed — attempting first in vain to get him on the phone, catch him in person, and eventually camping out in the hallway of a hotel on the floor Hagadone was reported staying in. Not long after that confrontation did TJ seek other employment opportunities.

DFO: Mebbe we ex-Hagadone newsmen should have a reunion — at Templins, of course. Oh, the stories we could tell. I had one courthouse reporter in Kalispell who was arrested while covering a trial because he had marijuana in his coat pockets. He also had a nasty habit of gluing a mirror to his shows and trying to look up dresses. Then, there was the weird photographer who always went out for a malt before lunch and later pimped his wife in Denver. You run into all kinds in the news biz, particularly at the smaller papers.

AM Hucks: Hag Wins Turkey Award for Calif. Roost

Full story here

Coeur d’Alene multimillionaire Duane Hagadone was one of the eight recipients of the Desert Post (Calif.) Weekly’s seventh annual Turkey Awards. He was in good company. Madonna and Aretha Franklin also picked up “Turkeys” for certain “actions or inactions, results, unfulfilled promises or simply not thinking before opening their beaks,” a Desert Post editorial said Tuesday. Staff writer Judith Salkin explains why Hagadone earned his Turkey: “What got us steamed was the megahouse expansion by the Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, real estate and newspaper magnet. The Palm Desert City Council gave Duane B. Hagadone the go-ahead to add a sports court to his 32,000-square-foot house at Bighorn Golf Club. Like the ridge house isn’t already big enough, Hagadone is adding another 20,000 (square feet) to what once was a pristine ridge line. Like other parts of the country, megamansions are becoming a regular part of the desert’s landscape, and it’s a crime. A crime against the desert’s fragile ecology, a crime of urban blight invading our mountains and a crime in terms of what’s being (done) to the serenity. We’re definitely not against growth. Heck, it’s inevitable. But let’s remember why we moved out here in the first place – the beautiful vistas, the clean air and the limited number of people. Just because you can afford to build a bigger mansion than Bob Hope did in Palm Springs doesn’t mean you should. And the various city and county governments should keep that in mind when approving, or not, projects like this one.” Sound familiar?

Thanksgiving Day Wild Card — 11/23/06

I’m going to sleep in today, HBOers. Nothing I enjoy more than sleeping until I can’t sleep any more. I get to do that only a coupla times a month. If I see something of incredible interest, I might post it. Otherwise, I’m MIA until Friday morning. I’ll see you back here then. Now, for your Thanksgiving Wild Card …

WorldNetDaily Poll: What Are You Thankful For?

Question: What are you most grateful for?

1. The Democrats have taken over Congress
2. There’s only two years of the Bush presidency left
3. Ann Coulter
4. That the U.S. hasn’t been struck by terrorists since Sept. 2001
5. Living in the freest, most prosperous nation in the world
6. My family and friends
7. That there’s a roof over my family’s heads and they all have food in their stomachs
8. There’s a God and he’s still in charge
9. That God has graciously forgiven my sins and I will spend eternity with him
10. Other

DFO: Nos. 4-9, and No. 10: A wife who still loves me after 31 years; three kids who are fun human beings, the Zags, a good employer, Coeur d’Alene, a state championship for Lake City High, North Idaho autumns, the other staffers in the Coeur d’Alene bureau, and all of you bloggers, commenters and blurkers here who have made my current career so. dang. much. fun.

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

DFO’s Ex-Hagadone News Network All-Star Team

Managing Editor: George Cecil
News Editor: Ric Clarke
Copy Editor: Mike Feiler
Columnist: Doug Clark
Editorialist: DFO
City Hall Reporter: Keith Erickson
Courthouse Reporter: Erica Curless
Cop Reporter: Taryn Brodwater
Reporters: Shawn Vestal, Oliver Staley, Bill Graves, David Bond, Brent Andrews, Jeff Selle and Susan Cuff.
Sports Editor: T.J. Simers
Sports Reporters: Dave Boling, Jim Meehan, and Dale Grummert
Business Editor: Bart Smith.
Business Columnist: Nils Rosdahl
Photographer: Dan Hyde and Lance Murphey

DFO: Others are probably deserving, too; but these are the ones that I knew/know best. What do you think?

No. 23 Gonzaga 82, No. 2 North Carolina 74

Full game story here, and: ESPN.com story here

Derek Raivio scored 21 points to help Gonzaga upset No. 2 North Carolina 82-74 in the NIT Season Tip-Off semifinals Wednesday night. Despite losing star Adam Morrison to the NBA after last season, Gonzaga didn’t seem fazed playing against a top program on a big stage at Madison Square Garden. “It was a great night for our team and our program,” said Gonzaga coach Mark Few. “Any time you can beat a program and a team like Carolina, that’s a great thing.” The Bulldogs (5-0) advanced to the championship game Friday night against Butler. In the first semifinal, Julian Betko scored 11 of his career-high 15 points in a decisive second-half run to give Butler a 56-44 victory over No. 22 Tennessee — Spokesman-Review.

007: I just wanted to remind everyone that Gonzaga rocks! The Zags own Manhattan, Spokane, Coeur d’Alene, and, for that matter, the entire Inland Empire! The Zags are America’s Team!!!!

Question: Can someone explain how a team that lost Batista and Morrison can beat the No. 2 team in the nation in Madison Square Garden?

Parting Shot — 11/22/06

Illustration (of Zamboni run by Boise skating rink employees): Bubblehead/The Stupid Shall Be Punished

Huckleberries Best of the Local Blogs — 11/22/06

I’ve been saving this one of “The King” since I first saw it on Cis’s blog. On Saturday, under his daily, “Three Beautiful Things,” Raymond Pert called this photo the “picture of contentment, companionship, perfection.” Long live The King. And may you all have a contented Thanksgiving tomorrow.

*Bubblehead/The Stupid Shall Be Punished totally supports the late-night fun run made by two Boise skating rink drivers in Zambonis because (drum roll, Puh-LEEZ) — it’s a guy thing here. Also, Boise Guardian comment here.

*Mommy Dearest/BrodH20 has a budding evangelist on her hands in son Boo; this Huckleberry Hound hopes he’s more Billy Graham than Jimmy Swaggart here.

*Marianne Love/Slight Detour recalls saying goodbye to family patriarch, Harold Tibbs, three years ago here, and she talks about waiting at airports for precious cargo here.

*Frum Helen Back/Hauser Thoughts is thankful that tomorrow will be the 46th time that she and hubby Dave will share Thanksgiving here.

*Katrina/Notes on a Napkin sounds like a very appreciative young woman as she counts her many blessings, one by one, here.

*In “Confessions of an American in London,” Southwark Lad/The Perambulator (aka Bronx Boy) admits that he’s a … nerd here.

Meanwhile, JBelle’s sharing recipes while avoiding the paparazzi here, Mari describes a holiday tradition in her home here, JeanC’s preparing Thanksgiving trimmings early and still fighting a cold here, Raymond Pert offers 3 more beautiful things here, the Sesame Street crew don’t have visions of sugar plums dancing in their heads at Kristin’s blog here, and Sara happens to like Quom here.

Don’t Look Now, But That Big Desert House …

… has earned Coeur d’Alene’s Local Boy Done Good a “Turkey Award” from the staff of the Palm Springs Desert Sun. And I quote:

What got us steamed was the megahouse expansion by the Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, real estate and newspaper magnet. The Palm Desert City Council gave Duane B. Hagadone the go-ahead to add a sports court to his 32,000-square-foot house at Bighorn Golf Club. Like the ridge house isn’t already big enough, Hagadone is adding another 20,000 to what once was a pristine ridge line. Like other parts of the country, megamansions are becoming a regular part of the desert’s landscape, and it’s a crime. A crime against the desert’s fragile ecology, a crime of urban blight invading our mountains and a crime in terms of the what’s being to the serenity. We’re definitely not against growth. Heck, it’s inevitable. But let’s remember why we moved out here in the first place - the beautiful vistas, the clean air and the limited number of people. Just because you can afford to build a bigger mansion than Bob Hope did in Palm Springs doesn’t mean you should. And the various city and county governments should keep that in mind when approving, or not, projects like this one — Judith Salkin/Palm Springs Desert Sun. (Full story here)

Question: Do you want to know about these things? Or do you think I bash Duane B. too much? (Yo, Tolle, there’s your cue.)

Reader: Were You Turkeys Photoshopping Turkeys?

Although I’ve suspected you have done this before, I’m writing to you today because of the obviously “Photoshop”ed turkey on page B3 of your Nov 22 edition. I believe you do your readers a disservice when you doctor photos and pass them off as the real thing. This is an ethics issue that your editorial team would do well to discuss. Sure, today you are only adding a turkey to a photo. Should readers expect to believe war photos, or disaster scene photos? What about sports photos? You owe it to your readers to address this issue. In the future, please consider adding a caeat to the photo byline when you “create” a photo. Better yet, just don’t doctor the photos in the first place — Dennis/Ask The Editors.

Photo Editor Larry Reisnoeur: I totally agree with you, that doctoring photos is a disservice to readers, and you are right, the turkey in the back of the photo was worked with Photoshop. However. We didn’t add a turkey, or anything else to the photo. If the photographer had added anything to the photo, they would be fired, before the day was over. (Larry’s complete comment here)

Question: Did we goof?


Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/22/06

Dressed as a Native American, Winans Elementary School first-grader Dalton Booth, right, passes the microphone to fellow classmate Brittany Wood, dressed as a pilgrim, after giving thanks to his father in the school’s library in Livingston, Mont., Tuesday. First-grade teacher Joyce Phillips had each of her first-grade students give thanks for something in their lives in front of their schoolmates/Garrett Cheen, Livingston Enterprise, AP.

Unbearable Bobness of Being: Dealing with turbulence over the Cascades and wondering when the string will play out here.

1. Two employees have been fired from Boise’s ice skating rink after making a midnight fast-food run - in a pair of Zambonis. The ice-groomer jockeys, both temporary city employees whose names and ages weren’t released by Boise Parks and Recreation, had to negotiate at least one intersection with a traffic light on their late-night creep from Idaho Ice World here.

2. Boundary County Prosecutor Jack Douglas now says a local judge never said “boys will be boys” or threatened to dismiss charges against a young man who caused a 17-year-old girl to suffer serious burns in a campfire last summer after allegedly saying “Jews burn” here.

3. An Idaho Falls judge ordered a former prosecutor who stole weapons from this eastern Idaho city’s police evidence locker to serve his full one- to five-year prison sentence Tuesday after determining he lied in a plea-bargain deal that would have let him out of jail by Jan. 1 here.

4. The National Weather Service expects heavy snow tonight over the mountains of Northeast Washington and the mountains of the North Idaho. The agency issued a heavy snow warning above 3,000 feet from 4 p.m. to 4 a.m. Thursday. But snow also may fall in lower elevations, including North Idaho velleys, tonight or tomorrow morning here.

5. Thon J. Edwards was sentenced to back-to-back life terms in February 1984 for breaking into a South Hill apartment and raping two women at knifepoint. But after 22 years, the convicted rapist is back on the streets of Spokane here.

6. IMHO-NW: D.F. Oliveria/Spokesman-Review (Phony hate-crime claims demean real victims), Dan Webster/Movies & More (Robert Altman, 1925-2006), Raymond Pert/Kellogg Bloggin’ (Iago), Jonathan Weber/New West (The new-old media), and Patrick O’Callahan/Tacoma News Tribune (free registration required) (Baby Boomers blew it).

Online Poll: 50% of 1303 respondents to an Idaho Statesman poll say that America will be safer after Jan. 23 when air travelers entering the U.S. will be required to show their passports.

*Ex-UI exec pleads guilty in University Place scandal here.

*The Spokane police officer who let a child-porn-possessing sex offender live in his family’s basement has been fired here. Frank Sennett/Hard 7 applauds the move here.

*A dead father’s gift heels his daughter’s knee here.

*Wyoming delegation rips Democrat Rangel’s draft idea here.

Orbusmax Special: Thurston County (Wash.) prosecutor found liable for sexually harassing three of his former prosecutors (free registration required) here.

APhoto of the Day — 11/22/06

President Bush, right, pets ‘Flyer’ after pardoning the National Thanksgiving turkey during a ceremony in the Rose Garden of the White House, earlier today in Washington. Holding the turkey is Lynn Nutt, left, from Springfield, Mo. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Poll: Few Brave Enough to Fight Black Friday Crowds

Issue: Poll: Few to brave Black Friday: Survey suggests most will opt out of annual shopping frenzy/Zogby International

More Info: All the Black Friday buzz could make you think the turkey-day tryptophan will have barely worn off before everyone will be heading to their favorite store to stake out a place in line, but a new Zogby Interactive poll shows just 14% plan to fight the crowds for post–Thanksgiving bargains this year. Young shoppers are most likely to race to the mall for Friday’s hot deals – 26% say they plan to participate.

DFO: No dang way.

Question: Are you brave enough to fight the crowds for good deals on Black Friday?


SR Edit: False Report of Gay Bashing Hurts All

Full editorial here

n alleged hate crime against a gay student traumatized Boise State twice this month, first when the student reported the Nov. 9 attack and again Friday when he admitted he’d lied about it. Initially, the student said he’d been struck from behind with an object and then hit several times in the face by a man using anti-gay expletives, according to the Arbiter Online, the independent campus newspaper. Also, the student reported to police that his car was vandalized that morning with the same homophobic words. The student was transported by ambulance from the campus to a Boise hospital. More than a week later, the student told police he used a stick and his own fists to wound himself. Now, he could face misdemeanor charges for filing a false report — D.F. Oliveria/Spokesman-Review.

Question: Should the gay student be prosecuted for filing a false report? And/Or: Does this hurt the cause for human rights in Idaho?

Wild Card/Tuesday — 11/21/06

Thanksgiving is only a work day away, HBOers. So, relief from the work-a-day world is near. Hang in there. While you’re doing that, you can start your own thread with this Wild Card …

Movie: DaVinci Code? Thumbs Up? Thumbs Down?

Issue: The release of “The DaVinci Code,” starring Tom Hanks on DVD.

DFO: I saw this last night at home, and I still don’t know what I think about it. One reviewer said: “For people who insist the movie is never as good as the book, your case just got stronger.” The book was interesting. As an Evangelical Christian, I was aware that Dan Brown was trying to mix old-fashioned paganism and factual error to make his case against Catholicism and Christianity. Despite that, I thought it still was a page-turner.

Question: What did you think of this movie?

Cutline Contest — 11/21/06

In this sequence of photos, President Bush reacts as Freedom Corps volunteer Eloise Monsarrat struggles to put another lei on Bush shortly after his arrival beneath the steps of Air Force One at Hickam Air Force Base in Honolulu, Hawaii, Monday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Top Cutlines

1. ELOISE: I’m here to lei you, sir.
MR. BUSH: I’m afraid you got the wrong president, ma’am.
ELOISE: No, sir, I’m here to welcome you. No one else volunteered.
MR. BUSH: Oh, that’s right. I read you’re from the Freedom Corpse. Funny, you don’t look Iraqi.
ELOISE: It’s the Corps, sir.
MR. BUSH: I know, it’s at the core of the insurgency. They wanna get their freedom.
ELOISE (blank stare, walks away) — JohnA.

2. Eloise: “Do you know where you are, Mr. President?”
George: “Huh? Why, uh…”
Eloise: “That’s right, sir!” — Family Phil.

3. President Bush, embarrassed that he’d been lei’d once, was even more shocked when he was lei’d the second time, by someone resembling his mother no less — keithincda.

HM: A Token D

For a complete list of today’s cutline entries, click here.

It’s My 2 Cents — Getting Canned by Hagadone

The e-mail from former Bonners Ferry M.E. Robert James re: getting canned by the Hagadone newspaper brought back memories. Robert believes it had something to do with a personal column he wrote endorsing Democrat Jerry Brady for governor in the recent election. Who knows? In May 1982, I was unceremoniously booted from my position as editor of Hagadone’s Daily Inter Lake in Kalispell, Mont. It was also on a Friday. That’s how the suits do it. Get a full week of work out of you and then give you the boot on a Friday afternoon, so the dust is allowed to settle until Monday.

Publisher C. Patrick King did the honors. I’d been editor for 4 of my 5 years in Kalispell. I was brought in knowing that the Hagadone chain was about to dump the current editor. Later, I became the sixth editor in seven years at the paper. Without warning, King called me into a conference room, asked for my resignation, and began to read a list of complaints that had never surfaced before. I was 28. I told him to knock the crap off and tell me the real reason. A few weeks before, I remember how the managers had sat around drinking wine and joking about a forced layoff in which each department had to can one employee. Pat wouldn’t tell me why. But tried to get me to quit instead of being fired. I refused. Later, I was told by an attorney friend that I would have lost my unemployment benefits, if I had quit.

I told Pat then that someday down the road I would run into him again — and ask again why he had fired me. Some suspected that I was making too much money since my salary equaled that of the composing room foreman (which shows what the chain thinks of its journalists). Fortunately, I landed on my feet as the assistant news editor of the Lewiston Tribune. Jay Shelledy, the former Idahonian (Moscow-Pullman Daily News) publisher who helped me get the Lewiston gig, said after he learned I’d been fired by a Hagadone paper: “That’s the best recommendation you can give me.” The Trib, one of the best newspapers of its size in the U.S., restored my faith in the news biz, after the firing and after I’d worked a decade for less-than-stellar papers, like Hagadone’s.

Later, I did run into King again, after he retired and was living in Coeur d’Alene. He was having coffee with other codgers at the Iron Horse when I asked point blank if he remembered why he fired me. He was embarrassed. That was fun. Still later, a mutual friend told me that Brad Hagadone, Duane’s son and my former darkroom technician, had bragged to him that he got me fired. Brad’s a great photographer. But he wasn’t highly motivated at the time. I rode him at times to perform the work the paper needed. Mebbe he complained to Daddy. Mebbe he didn’t. Who knows? It doesn’t matter now.

Getting fired wasn’t fun. But it set me on a track to get to Coeur d’Alene and work for a good paper that paid decently. Indeed, it was the best thing that happened to me careerwise. I hope Robert James can say the same thing down the road a bit.

Question: Spanking? Thumbs Up? Thumbs Down?

Issue: You shouldn’t spank your kids, UNICEF chief says/Canadian News

DFO: Merda. My wife and I spanked Junior and Amy Dearest far fewer times than they needed the corporal punishment. I was the bigger softie. Sis was spanked more than Junior. My wife and I administered the spankings with love. Yeah, yeah, I know there are parents that don’t. I also know that there are a lot of out-of-control kids who have had no discipline to correct their errant behavior — and society has to put up with those little monsters.

Question: Do you believe that children should be spanked to correct bad behavior?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/21/06

A rubber band ball is pushed to a scale for a weigh-in before its certification by officials from Guinness World records as the world’s largest Tuesday in Chicago. The ball, weighing 4,594 pounds, was created by Steve Milton, of Eugene, Ore., using more than 175,000 rubber bands. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Leaning Straight Up: Liberal distain for military rears its head in Rangel here.

1. David Horsey/Seattle PI uses the OJ Simpson “If I Did It” flap to take a shot at Fox News here.

2. The thrice-All-American, No. 1 Wired City of Destiny can add another label to its tourism brochure: “Most Sexually Healthy.” The public tribute to Tacoma’s private parts comes from Self magazine, which shines a national spotlight on areas of the city normally covered by bathing suits here. (Free registration required)

3. New Hampshire Democrats says Republicans should pay them $4.1 million in damages for an illegal phone-jamming operation by an Idaho company that disrupted get-out-the-vote operations on Election Day 2002 here.

4. Convicted Spokane serial killer Robert Yates Jr. points to Green River serial killer Gary Ridgway in arguing that his Pierce County death sentence should be overturned here.

5. Two teenagers have been arrested on charges of burglarizing and damaging a Hillyard Nazarene church in a possible hate crime. The boys, ages 15 and 17, were booked into juvenile detention Saturday after three days of investigation here.

6. IMHO-NW: Spokesman-Review (Being border friendly), Idaho Statesman (Sales tax on gas unfair), Julie Fanselow/Red State Rebels (As class prez, Sali can’t hide), Billings Gazette (OJ’s ill-gotten fame unprofitable), Frank Mieli/Kalispell Daily Inter Lake (OK, Democrats, now what?), and Marc Stewart/Coeur d’Alene Press (Why they call it “locker”).

73% of 1673 respondents to an Idaho Statesman poll say they plan to drive less than 50 miles to celebrate Thanksgiving Thursday.

*Washington’s former Capitol Building was defaced with 32 spray-painted symbols over the weekend and could cost $10,000 to clean up here.

*Up to 720 snowmobiles would be allowed in Yellowstone Park per day under plan here.

*3 starters kicked of Montana State-Billings basketball team for violating rules here.

Orbusmax Special: Callers say Seattle suicide hotline put them on hold here.

Question: What About Sorensen School?

Issue: Sorensen school backers turn out: Board hears pleas to keep it open/Meghann Cuniff, Spokesman-Review

Susie Snedaker: Do you have any comments regarding the demise of Sorenson? I think that developers have been salivating over that large block site for some time. What better place to put affordable housing - the trade-off for increasing the density downtown? I have a hunch that the demise of Person Field might be the offing. Again, it is another large plot of land - perfect for affordable housing. The fact that real estate issues are discussed and determined behind closed doors bothers me. The way the 2005 Person Field /proposed Lakes Middle School replacement issue was handled should raise red flags throughout the community.

Question: Do you think there’s a hidden agenda behind the move to close Sorensen?

Issue: Breastfeeders Protest Delta Stand

Tiffanie Beaulieu, of Highgate, Vt., breastfeeds during a protest next to the Delta Airlines counter in the Burlington International Airport terminal, this morning. About 25 women participated in the planned event at the Vermont airport. Protestors irate over the ejection of a nursing mother from a Delta Air Lines commuter flight in Burlington plan similar actions Tuesday at other airports. (AP Photo)

Question: Do you have a problem with a woman who breastfeeds her baby in public?

Trib: If At First You Don’t Succeed, Try Again

Complete Lewiston Tribune edit here

Nov. 8, many Idaho Democrats found consolation for their party’s losses at home in victories across the nation. Now, they can take hope from the post-election statement of intent from one of their Election Day also-rans: Larry Grant says he probably will run again for the 1st District seat in the U.S. House. Grant, the former Micron corporate counsel and vice president, knows better than to attribute his loss to Republican legislator Bill Sali to Democrats’ inability to get elected in Idaho. If other Idaho Democrats had thought that after initial losses, the state would have been deprived of the service of Cecil Andrus, Frank Church, Larry LaRocco and several other of the party’s stars. The plain fact is that Democrats can win in Idaho, but they don’t often do it the first time around. Grant as much as says that in his analysis of his race against Sali. “Folks keep asking, ‘What did we do wrong?’ ” the Fruitland retiree asks. “And I tell them we didn’t do anything wrong; we did everything right. We started with an unknown candidate in a tough district and got 45 percent of the vote” — Tom Henderson/Lewiston Tribune.

Related: Most Democrats may consider another run: Brady says he’s tried, finished with politics/Associated Press.

Question: Did Democrats like Larry Grant, Jerry Brady and Larry LaRocco accomplish anything by their runs for office this year?

Parting Shot — 11/20/06

Elizabeth King holds her sign upside down as she waits for her father, Stf. Sgt. Scott King, to arrive at Fort Campbell, Ky., earlier today. About 1,000 soldiers with the 101st Airborne Division are scheduled to return from deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan on Monday and Tuesday. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

BrodH20: You’ll Be Surprised How Much You Can Biff

Full post here

A friend of mine calls it biffing — the act of going through your house and getting rid of that stuff you don’t need. That stuff that accumulates and multiplies and collects on countertops and in cupboards and in dressers and closets. That’s how I spent most of the weekend. There’s something therapeutic, yet troubling, about going into your son’s room and, two hours later, having two garbage bags full of stuff for Goodwill, another bag of hand-me-downs and another bag of garbage (broken toys, puzzles with missing pieces). Even in the rooms in our house that seemed the most tidy and organized, I was able to find stuff we just didn’t need. I had about 20 pairs of nylons in my sock drawer. Only 5 didn’t have holes in the toes — Mommy Dearest/BrodH20.

Question: Which of your rooms is most in need of biffing?

Top Cutline — 11/20/06

Bathers toss a glass of wine as they dip in wine-poured hot spring at an open-air spa in Hakone, west of Tokyo Thursday to mark the release of Beaujolais Nouveau. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Kyodo News)

Top Cutline

1. Already cashing in on their names, newly-elected Senators Corker and Tester lead the new Dems in Congress by all wining in unison about the state of the union — John Austin.

2. The HBO gang called a “cease fire” in honor of DFO’s birthday, celebrating the occasion with a wine-soaked blog fest — Jane Q. Citizen.

3. Definitely the best Beaujolais Nouveau yet. Light. Fruity. With just a hint of musk and a definite urine aftertaste — DanG.

HM: A Token D

For the rest of today’s terrific cutlines, click here.

Question: How Often Do You See “Idiot” Drivers?

Issue: ‘You’re an idiot’: Website lets motorists take down license numbers, vent about bad drivers/Washington Post

More Info: The Web site allows motorists to post the license plate numbers of offending drivers on the Internet and tell the world what a moron that guy was on the Capital Beltway. The Web site was created by a Fairfax man who said he wants to shame people into driving better. Police disapprove, saying the best tactic is to call authorities.

Question: How often do you see people driving like idiots?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/20/06

Artist Dave Clemons, of Coeur DAlene, Idaho, looks down Wenatchee Avenue from his artwork in Wenatchee, Wash., in this file photo, to determine how much the new sign needs to be shifted for people driving by to see it better. Wenatchee will no longer be billed as the “Apple Capital of the World” here (AP Photo).

Palousitics: The commotion caused by the WSU Campus Republicans w/their rally in favor of a 700-mile border fence continues. Seems YouTube has put the original video of one of the two angry Ethnics Dept. professors confronting a student here, WSU Regents revising the student code of conduct as a result of this incident here, my editorial about this incident here, commentary by Michael Costello/Lewiston Tribune here, and rejection of an apology offered by one of the profs here.

1. Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi hasn’t become House Speaker yet and she’s already getting upstaged, according to David Horsey/Seattle PI, here.

2. The WSU Board of Regents voted Friday to make a permanent change to the law that allows police unrestricted access to residence halls. The regents unanimously passed a motion that changes the legal definition of guests to residence halls. The regents solidified the law they made under emergency rules in September, citing students’ safety as a paramount concern here.

3. Democratic Party luminaries back East who think it was a waste of money to beef up local organizations in places like Montana and Wyoming don’t understand the gains the party can make in the West, state party directors said, here.

4. Repub Bill Sali, the controversial U.S. congressman-elect from Idaho, got off to a rough start in Washington, D.C., by showing up a day early and in the wrong place for his party’s congressional leadership elections. Sali wondered into the Democratic caucus by mistake here. But he had the last laugh on his critics when he was elected president of the 2007-08 Republican freshman class here.

5. Tim Egan, the former Gonzaga Prep student who won the National Book Award for “The Worst Hard Time,” remembers his roots, according to Joel Connelly/Seattle PI, here.

6. IMHO-NW: Doug Clark/Spokesman-Review (No vaccine for stupidity), Tim Woodward/Idaho Statesman (Tough to be Idahoan who fears heights), Bert Caldwell/Spokesman-Review (Banks join payday lenders against military), Vivvi Pierce/WSU Evergreen (Bad political manners still bad manners), and John Blanchette/Spokesman-Review (WSU Cougs are finished).

Online Poll: 67% of 1789 respondents to an Idaho Statesman poll oppose a bill being proposed by U.S. Rep. Charles Rangel, D-NY, that would reinstitute the draft.

*A Loon Lake, Wash., woman has been charged with starting destructive wildfire near Spokane here.

*Bald eagles flock to North Idaho for fish feast here.

*Washington state trooper injured in Spokane traffic stop here.

*Ex-Montana QB Dave Dickenson named Canada Grey Cup MVP here.

Orbusmax Special: BSU reacts to false report of gay bashing here.

APhoto of the Day — 11/20/06

Bathers toss a glass of wine as they dip in wine-poured hot spring at an open-air spa in Hakone, west of Tokyo Thursday to mark the release of Beaujolais Nouveau. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Kyodo News)

DanG: Is NIC Board Best You’ve Ever Seen

DanG: Guilt by association? How many business people in this town signed the letter to the NIC Board? How many people wanted to sign, but for political reasons did not? Ron V. won his seat by expressing many of the same wishes that I have, and he won big in a 5-way race. Is he on shaky ground with you as well? Are you telling me that the NIC Board is the best ever and we cannot do better?

DFO: If my memory serves me correctly, the NIC board and local business leaders have buried the hatchet and are now working together to help the college become even more responsive to the community. I don’t know if the current board is the “best ever,” but it has a pretty good people on it. Ron Vieselmeyer probably won big in the five-way race because he’s a familiar name with a lot of Republican backing. Not hard to figure that one out. Jim Coleman probably would have been a better fit. Other than that, I have no dog in this fight. I’m simply saying that Bob Paulos hasn’t said anything good about the college since I don’t know when. And you have a vested interest — and possibly aren’t seeing this one clearly — because you live in the college’s shadow, by choice, of course.

Statesman: Should Dems Push to Reinstate Draft?

Statesman Question: Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y says he will introduce a bill next year that Americans would have to sign up for a new military draft after turning 18. Do you think the draft should be reinstated?

* Yes
* No
* No opinion

Bob: As to women in the draft I think America and its security is best served by a “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. So, if women are drafted into the armed forces, their superiors will not ask if they are women and the women are not to tell. This has worked awesomely swell for homosexuals in the military and I’m sure would work just as awesomely swell for drafted chicks.

SR Edit: No Judge Wants to Create Another Duncan

Full editorial here

No Kootenai County judge wants to be the next Thomas Schroeder. In Minnesota’s 7th Judicial District, Judge Schroeder is feared by defendants and their criminal attorneys. The judge is regarded as so tough on crime that defense attorneys asked that he be removed from their cases 98 times in the 12 months after July 1, 2004 – the most among the district’s 20 judges. Yet, the nation in general and Kootenai County in particular consider him soft on crime. Schroeder will be remembered as the judge who allowed convicted child molester Joseph Edward Duncan to go free by setting bail in an unrelated molestation case at only $15,000. After Duncan posted the bail, of course, he slaughtered Mark McKenzie, Brenda Groene and Brenda’s son, Slade, at their Wolf Lodge Bay home and allegedly kidnapped and abused siblings Dylan and Shasta Groene before killing Dylan, too. Now, defense attorneys Tim Gresback and Jim Siebe claim that Kootenai County judges are setting bail so high because of the “Duncan effect” that clients are in effect being held without bond. The two attorneys, who represent defendants throughout the state, say Idaho’s bail rates are highest in Kootenai County — D.F. Oliveria/Spokesman-Review.

Sheriff’s Capt. Ben Wolfinger: Understand that bail is to insure that a person will show up in court to be held accountable. Currently, just over 70% of the active warrants in Kootenai County are for Fail to Appear. It seems that the judges are reacting to this high rate of non-compliance and using the only tool that they have to insure that people will appear for court… that of a higher bail.

Question: On a scale of one to 10, how to you rate excessive bail as a problem?


WorldNetDaily Poll — 11/19/06

Question: Do you read the Bible?

1. No – and I don’t read any other fairy tales, either
2. No – I have too many other things to do with my time
3. No – I tried and couldn’t understand it
4. No
5. That’s none of your business – religion is a private matter
6. Yes – I don’t believe in its God, but it’s a good source of wisdom, morality and ancient history
7. Yes – you can’t be an educated person and not be familiar with it
8. Yes, but not as much as I should
9. Yes, regularly – I’d be lost without it
10. Yes

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

And The Last Leaf Falls

Cool shot of the end of autumn published by the Eugene (Ore.) Register-Guard/AP.

5A State Champion Lake City 35, Highland 6

Finally, perfection. Sporting an 11-0 record entering the state championship football game for the third time in eight years, Lake City finally came through. Dominating the second half, the top-ranked Timberwolves destroyed No. 2 Highland 35-6 Friday night in the Kibbie Dome to win the IHSAA/United Dairymen of Idaho State 5A championship, delighting the majority of fans, estimated at 6,000. The Timberwolves pounded the ball on offense and stuffed the run on defense, breaking away from a slim 7-6 halftime lead. The second state championship in school history couldn’t have been sweeter, coming against the Rams, a perennial power that has played for the state title 11 times in 12 years, winning six — Dave Trimmer/Spokesman-Review.

007: I told you guys Lake City would cruise. The two best teams in Idaho this year were Lake City, which was head and shoulders above everyone, and Meridian, who could be almost Lake City-esque when they brought their A-game, but they were very inconsistent. Congrats to the Timberwolves! I can’t stand Highland, mainly because they’ve always benefited so much from playing games in the referee-friendly confines of the Minidome.

Question: How about them Timberwolves?

Bubblehead: “Casino” Is Best Bond Yet

Complete review here

While I’ve always been a James Bond fan, the last two movies really let me down; while you normally have to suspend disbelief a little bit, they were just over the top. (I admit that my opinion might be slanted because of the absolutely ridiculous submarine finale of “The World Is Not Enough”.) I like the films in which Bond is portrayed as the cold-blooded assassin, because let’s face it — that’s what he is. Needless to say, I didn’t like Roger Moore as Bond. The makers of Casino Royale were smart — they “reset” the Bond character back to the beginning of his “00” career, and set it in the present day. While I was disappointed that they seemed to imply that his military background was in the SAS rather than the Navy, everything else worked very well. You get the feeling that Bond is still “learning the ropes” as a Double-O; he makes mistakes, he studies his face in the mirror, he wonders if he’s losing his soul — in other words, the character is more complex than we’ve seen him in quite a while. (My oldest son thought it made him too “wussified”, but I thought it made for a better story.) — Bubblehead/The Stupid Shall Be Punished.

For reviews by Bubblehead re: “Flag of Our Fathers,” “One Night With The King” and “Borat,” click here.

Question: Which was your favorite Bond movie?

Kellogg Bloggin’: Three Beautiful Things Today

1. My Springer Spaniel Snug and the Deke’s Corgi Charly are a year apart in age and wrestle in the living room and the back yard, having learned the limits of how far they can go and not hurt each other and keep their romping playful.

2. As I puttered in my Honda over the 30th Ave. hill, the valley below me, where Lane Community College sits, was quilted in fog. At first I appreciated the beauty of the denotative fog, but it also seemed connotative, representative of the conditions we sometimes work in, and some of the beauty dissipated.

3. Young love. A fresh young man and his fresh young girlfriend, holding hands, each in gray and green Univerisity of Oregon T-shirts, bounded up the stairs outside the Center building in perfect step with each other and didn’t seem to see me coming down — Raymond Pert/Kellogg Bloggin’.

Question: What would be on your list of Three Beautiful Things from today or Friday?

Originally posted at 6:15 p.m. Friday

Lake City Wins 5A Title Over Highland, 35-6

There celebrating at the Kibbie Dome as I write this because Van Troxel’s Lake City High Timberwolves have won the state 5A title. They dominated the Highland Rams 35-6. Highland scored the first touchdown. And Lake City the next five. Congrats.

Parting Shot — 11/17/06

Jeremy Shank carries his 18-month old daughter Josie Shank down the final run of the day on opening day at Crystal Mountain, Wash., Thursday after she fell asleep on the ski lift. Shank who works as a snow cat driver at the ski resort said he started Josie with skis at 8 months and this is her third season on the slopes. (AP Photo/The News Tribune, Janet Jensen)

Question: Are you a good enough skier to try this?

HBO’s Best of the Local Blogs — 11/17/06

Thirtysomething skater Brent Andrews/Chronic Discontent is a regular and welcome commenter at Huckleberries Online — and a former Coeur d’Alene Press reporter. Here, you see him doing his thing at a skateboard park in Franklin, Tenn.

*Put yer hands together for Dr. Jim Winter, the newest member of the North Idaho blogosphere, who writes the CastMD blog re “mostly health news related, but contains the magical, mystical, and provides commentary on challenges like “grass field burning,” photoeditorials from my collection including the recent “anti-Bush, anti-gov 24 hour rally” in SF, and other fascinating concepts of the region.” Today, Dr. Jim opines on the need to fire college basketball coach Bobby Knight here.

*Mari/Dogwalk Musings has an interesting post about the interlopers who are guilty of driveby posting on a single subject (think Tinfoilers of the Amara-Mitchell days) and then disappear here.

*Sue Turner/Tumblewords is halfway through her 50,000-word novel challenge here and sez goodbye to a friend who was collaborating with her on a murder mystery here.

*Kale/Un-Muted Mumblings applauds the Republicans for returning to their base by selecting minority leaders who have a pro-life voting record, with this post here.

*As he waits for his little house in Coeur d’Alene to sell, so he can chase a dream elsewhere, CODADave/Atmospheric Ruminations pens “The Real Estate Blues” here.

Meanwhile, Bayview Herb enjoys the infighting among congressional Demos here, Mommy Dearest finally has a home where she can hang curtains here, Councilman Mike posts for the first time in 18 days — about leaves here, Costco and the Schwanns man help the Loves prepare for Thanksgiving here, and Toad leaves us hanging as he prepares to visit family in Texas here.

Palousitics: Hannity & Colmes Misfire on WSU Flap

Gimlet-eyed Tom Forbes/Palousitics continues on a roll this week by catching a logo misfire on the Fox News.com Web site. Do you notice what’s wrong with the teaser to last night’s Hannity & Colmes show, featuring WSU College Republicans prez Kiley Smith?

Napkin Notes: 7-Year-Old Experiencing Puppy Love

Full post here

Katie, my seven year old daughter, has a crush on a boy. This isn’t breaking news or anything. We moved here to Coeur d’Alene almost five years ago, and Katie has liked Thomas for most of them. Puppy love, infatuation, crush—whatever you call it, Katie’s little amore has outlasted most Hollywood marriages and stubbornly endured through cootie calls, teasing, and the outright rejection of a little boy who is not quite comfortable with the idea of being the object of so much passionate adoration. Actually, the “little” factor doesn’t have as much to do with it as the “boy” factor—even many grown men I know would quail at receiving a document entitled “10 Reasons Why I Like Thomas Sooooooooooo Much”, with accompanying illustrations — Katrina/Notes on a Napkin.

Question: When was your first encounter with puppy love?

Question: Where Are Area Speed Traps?

Issue: Police out in force for Apple Cup/Spokesman-Review

More Info: From the air, along the roadway and on the football field, the Washington State Patrol will be watching for trouble makers Saturday at the Apple Cup in Pullman. WSP troopers from Moses Lake and Tri-Cities will also be patrolling highways that pass through those areas where Cougar and Husky football fans will be traveling to the annual rivalry, which this year is being played at Washington State University, said spokesman Jeff Sevigney. “Expect to see extra WSP troopers across Eastern Washington,” he said.

Question: Where are the worst speed traps in the Inland Northwest?

APhoto of the Day — 11/17/06

This undated photo provided by Melanie Ice, shows her three dogs, Sam, in Ohio State gear; Charlie, dressed as a referee, and Coco, in Michigan gear from left, in Grand Rapids, Mich. Ice is an Ohio State football fan, and her husband is an avid Michigan fan. No. 1 Ohio State plays No. 2 Michigan on Saturday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Courtesy Melanie Ice via The Grand Rapids Press)

Question: What Should Be Done w/WSU Profs?

Full editorial here

Isn’t it supposed to be the professors on a university campus who provoke free and open debate? During a recent incident at Washington State University, it was students who were doing that. And it was two faculty members who displayed shameful disregard for their freedom to do so. On Nov. 2, the students, members of WSU College Republicans, erected a 24-foot chain-link fence in the heart of campus as a show of support for congressional action to build more fencing at the United States’ border with Mexico. Whatever you think of a bigger border fence — and this page doesn’t think much of it — the demonstration was hardly out of line on a campus that has seen far more raucous displays of free speech. That apparently did not matter to two professors in the school’s comparative ethnic studies department. One, David Leonard, demanded the student identification number of a demonstrator who was videotaping the event. And another, John Streamas, hurled a vulgar insult at at least one of the demonstrators — Jim Fisher/Lewiston Tribune.

Story: WSU fence drives controversy: College Republicans say it’s a symbol; critics call it racist/Shawn Vestal, Spokesman-Review


Question: Should any action be taken against the two professors who tried to muzzle the WSU College Republicans demonstration?

Thom George: 2 Local Papers Are Different

Thom George: The S/R is a newspaper and reports NEWS. The CdA Press is, IMHO, a community paper; you know feel good stuff, tragic personal stories, high school sports, endless photo ops of donations; you get the picture. It’s why I subscribe to both papers. They each serve a different purpose.I think it is unrealistic to think that the Spokesman-Review could, or should, cover the type of small town, community news that the Press covers. OTOH, it would be equally unrealistic to expect the Press to cover the larger, hard news stories with the depth and breadth that the Review does. Apples and Oranges, my friend.

DFO: Thom was responding to a posting by DanG: “Dave: Would the S-R ever publish a letter like this one, but from the other perspective?” Thom’s response nailed it. The two local newspapers have different missions. We have a regional focus and an edition that emphasizes North Idaho news. The Press has a community focus that picks up what I call “chicken dinner” stuff — check passings, Little League team photos, chamber functions, etc. The Press can’t touch our big-picture and investigative coverage. We don’t have the space for the chicken-dinner stuff. An important story will make both papers. Each paper has its own function. For a city its size, Coeur d’Alene is lucky to have such coverage. Few towns in the 21st century have two newspapers and assorted TV networks competing like this. As a result, the truth generally comes out.

Statesman Poll: How Long Would You Stand in Line?

Idaho Statesman Question: Throughout the Treasure Valley die-hard gamers stood in line at stores waiting for the chance to buy a PlayStation 3. How long would you stand in line for an item you really wanted?

* Days before
* Hours before
* I wouldn’t

Parting Shot — 11/16/06

U.S. actor Tom Cruise, right, and U.S. actress Katie Holmes with their daughter Suri, who became engaged in June 2005, hold hands as they leave their hotel in Rome, Thursday. Cruise and Holmes are expected to marry in the Orsini Odescalchi castle soon. (AP Photo)

DFO: Tom Cruise almost has the “Alec Baldwin” factor with me — someone whose politics or personal life are so over the top that I hardly can stand to watch a movie with him in it. But not quite. Cruise is weird. But he still can make a movie. See: Mission Impossible 3, which just came out on DVD.

Question: Is there a movie star who so repulses you that you won’t watch a movie with him/her in it or listen to a song sung by him/her?

Family Phil: Every Kid Special in Own Way

I had an epiphany about my son a few weeks ago. He was being extremely stubborn about something which involved a group activity in the community. The details are not important. But in the moment I became quite frustrated with him and actually said out loud to myself, “Why can’t my son be like all the other boys?!” The answer came to me instantly: “Because he’s not like the other boys!” And in that moment I realized how wrong it is to compare my children to others. My son and daughter are totally unique. There’s nobody else like them (now I sound like Mr. Rogers). It just took me awhile to understand that their personalities are their own, and sometimes I just have to let them be who they are. Of course, that doesn’t mean they can break rules and be impolite. But I’m talking about the way they play and create and learn and grow. Every kid has their own special way. Sometimes it’s up to the parents to open their eyes and see it — Family Phil/A Family Runs Through It.

Question: How do you mold a kid without breaking his/her spirit?

Tinsley: 2 Thumbs Up for — “Washed Away”

Jesse Tinsley: Just saw “Flushed Away” with my kids. Very entertaining in a Dreamworks sort of way. Similar to “Shrek”, it inserts little snippets of pop songs, mostly sung by slugs, throughout the movie. Several jabs at Disney. It has a cute love story and some good voice on the leads. Lots of slapstick and adventure. I’ve been suckered into seeing a lot of bad kid flicks, including “Hoodwinked”, “Spongebob”, “Dougal” and “Curious George”. “Flushed Away” was worth the matinee tickets.

DFO: I appreciate reviews by HBO commenters because they don’t get into all the hookum about artistic license and form, etc. I want to know, if it’s worth $8 at the cinema or if I should wait for it to come out on DVD. I’m always on the lookout for a good review. Thanks, JT.

Inside Huckleberries — 11/16/06

*Christie Wood, Public Information Officer for the Coeur d’Alene Police Department (and occasional HBO poster), will read her new children’s book, “The Adventure of Woodville,” at the library on Nov. 30. Wood, who began writing after returning to college as an adult, said her book is the story of a little pug dog names Oscar the Prince of Wales. He lives at Woodville – a large farm – with all of his animal friends. This is the first story in a series.

*There was some comment here yesterday re: whether Debra Heise was free to comment about the Davis (girl in the fire) case. Here’s what Idaho code sez: “A judge shall not, while a proceeding is pending or impending in any court, make any public comment that might reasonably be expected to affect its outcome or impair its fairness or make any nonpublic comment that might substantially interfere with a fair trial or hearing. The judge shall require similar abstention on the part of court personnel subject to the judge’s direction and control. This Section does not prohibit judges from making public statement in the course of their official duties or from explaining for public information the procedures of the court. This Section does not apply to proceedings in which the judge is a litigant in a personal capacity.” I put in the underlines.

*Ken Paulman: I’ve sent the comments on to the designer - thanks again to everyone for the great feedback. I only had about three people volunteer to be identified, so we’ll stick with the screen names for the sake of consistency. I’ve talked it over with Gary Graham, and we’re both fine with that. Look for the story on the back page of the Today section on Sunday.

APhoto of the Day — 11/16/06

Monkeys ride on the back of a pickup truck fully loaded with coconuts after collecting them from a plantation in Chumphon province, southern Thailand Tuesday. The monkeys, the pig-tailed macaques, can quickly scamper up the trunk of a coconut palm, select the ripe ones and with a twist and pull the fruit will drop to the ground. You write the cutline. (AP Photo)

Question: Should Jail Embrace Chain Gang Idea?

Issue: Sheriff: Put inmates to work: Watson proposes idea to build new jail at landfill, have inmates sort out recyclables/Dave Turner, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: Kootenai County Sheriff Rocky Watson on Wednesday proposed an idea to ease overcrowding at the jail and the landfill at the same time. It’s not quite like chain gangs of old, making small rocks out of big rock to build roads, or inmates growing rutabagas on a county farm. However, Watson’s plan does put “hard labor” back into incarceration so prisoners who are sentenced for their crimes serve their time rather than mark time.

Question: Good idea?

Statesman Poll: What’s Your Snow Ski, Board Level?

Idaho Statesman: When it comes to skiing or snowboarding, what is your skill level?

* Beginner
* Intermediate
* Advanced
* Don’t ski or board

Thom George: Rejecting Murtha Good Move

Issue: House Democrats on Thursday chose Maryland Rep. Steny Hoyer to be House majority leader over Rep. John Murtha, the choice of Rep. Nancy Pelosi, in line to become speaker. Hoyer was elected on a vote of 149-86.

Thom George: The Democrats have rejected John Murtha and elected Hoyer to the majority leader post. This is probably good news, in my opinion, for two reasons: 1. Murtha had a lingering odor of corruption remaining from Abscam and the minority party would trumpet that. 2. Pelosi tried a power move to repay a longtime ally and thwart a longtime opponent, the majority rejected that tactic and asserted some independence. Good move.

DFO: On the positive side, House Dems are showing an inclination to keep their side clean. On the negative side, this was House Speaker To Be Nancy Pelosi’s first major play — and she backed a stinker.

Clark: Newspaper Right to Tell West Tale

Complete column here

I sat glued to the tube atching “Frontline’s” “A Hidden Life” Tuesday night, hoping to gain some actual insight into what made Jim West tick. Instead, it appears from the PBS documentary that we should be beating ourselves up for the political and personal downfall of Spokane’s only recalled mayor. Sorry, folks. Count me out. I have some sympathy for West, who died of cancer last July. But he disgraced himself and his office by engaging in conduct unbecoming for a mayor of Spokane or Anywhere, USA. He trolled the Internet for teen/man love. He used the trappings of his office to enhance his dating life. The newspaper was right to tell the tale. The voters were right to toss his sorry hide out. End of story — Doug Clark/Spokesman-Review.

Question: Agree? Disagree?

Parting Shot — 11/15/06

Family Phil: My 5-year-old daughter overheard me say that I needed to lose a few pounds, so she designed the perfect diet for me …

Question: Can you top this advice?

Question: How Has CDA Changed — for the Worse?

Full post here

I wrote something in my previous posting about how I hoped some things would not change around these parts. Even though I am leaving Coeur d’Alene soon, it is a beautiful place. Back in the ‘60s and ‘70s, I had such a fun time growing up here. This city was everything to me; really, it’s been the only place for me for a lot of reasons. And it may be again in the future, but that’s something I don’t know yet. And, this summer, I again spent a lot of time down at City Park; it’s just about the only place one can go without getting driven off beaches, it’s one of the few places where you really can’t stumble onto someone’s private property. As you can tell, I really hate the whole Sanders’ Beach situation, where the property owners are trying to take over the beach. But, that’s out of my hands, and quite possibly, out of everyone elses’ hands as well — CodaDave/Atmospheric Ruminations.

Question: Have you been here long enough to have a regret re: something that has been lost as a result of “progress”?

Top Cutlines — 11/15/06

Perryville Elementary School student Natasha Sargent learns how to milk a cow with an artificial udder Tuesday during Adventures in Agriculture Day at the Kentucky School for the Deaf in Danville, Ky. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/The Advocate-Messenger, Clay Jackson)

Top Cutlines

1. In this file photo, a young Sammy gets a grip on the udder reality of life: that you can get creamed if you don’t get weaned from the teat of your past — John Austin.

2. “I must be careful now, since I already pulled to hard on the back two. Maybe, if I just squeezed a little less, I can get choclate milk. It’s worth a try” — Thomas Beasley.

3. Lo, the Taxpayer who has had two teats ripped out by the Republicans stands stoic as the Democrat Nancy Pelosi takes her turn at milking — Brent Andrews.

HM: Holly

For the rest of today’s cutlines, click here.

Davis Attorney Powell Issues Statement

Full statement here

As the defense attorney in the case in which teenager Ilaura Fleck was burned at a keg party in Boundary County, I am concerned about the continuing publication of false information and misunderstanding about this case. Much of this misinformation concerns Magistrate Debra Heise, who presided over the case and who is constrained by judicial codes from defending herself or clarifying the record while the matter is still before the courts. Because I am not similarly constrained, I wish to stipulate for the public record the following facts in hopes that by doing so the most egregious misstatements will be corrected and not continue to be repeated — Bryce Powell, attorney for Brian Todd Davis.

Your reaction?

Question: How Committed Are You to Recycling?

Full story here

Outgoing Kootenai County Commission Chairman Gus Johnson, during a public meeting on Monday, poured the remainder of his soda from the aluminum can into his coffee cup. He then tossed the spent can into a trash receptacle behind the commission table and walked out of the chambers. If someone didn’t reach in and retrieve the can that night when custodians dumped the trash, that can likely would begin a trip into the county’s waste stream. “I’ve been guilty of that myself,” incoming chairman Rick Currie said. “We all have been guilty of that, I think.” Johnson could not be reached for comment — Dave Turner/Coeur d’Alene Press.

DFO: I can’t leave ol’ Gus hanging on this one. I don’t recycle either. I’ve heard that the cost for picking up recyclables wipes out any savings on the landfill in. Dunno. I wished this story had discussed that. Meanwhile, Gus and I will stand in opposite corners, with our noses against the wall.

Question: How committed are you to recycling?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/15/06

A pit bull _ nicknamed “Bullet” is shown recovering at the Marion County Dog Control and Shelter in Salem, Ore., Monday, Nov. 13, 2006. The dog, found in the mountains east of Salem, Ore., with a bullet in its jaw and little meat on its bones, has a chance to survive here.

Religious conservative Dennis Mansfield blogs the Rolling Stones concert in Nampa last night here and explains why the Stones are conservative here. Statesman: Unbelievable performance here.

1. U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert, a Washington Republican, knows how the ultimate survivor of that hit TV show feels, according to David Horsey/Seattle PI, here. Related: Reichert survived split tickets here.

2. A federal judge Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit that claimed the state illegally discriminates against North Idaho residents with respiratory ailments by managing field burning smoke in a way that prevents them from leaving their homes here.

3. Spotted Owl Redux: Gang Green is suing to stop a timber harvest of 50,000 acres of private forestland because numbers of northern spotted owl are decreasing despite Herculean efforts to save it here.

4. A Montana House race in Yellowstone County has resulted in a tie, potentially tipping control of the House to the Democrats. And a 25-25 tie in the Senate was broken when a Republican announced he is defecting to the Democrats here. Related: GOP cries foul over senator’s defection here.

5. Most of Bud Bower’s powerlifting friends left the sport 15 to 20 years ago. This didn’t deter him. Early last month, the 64-year-old Pullman barber accomplished the dream they shared when he won the coveted World Masters Powerlifting Championships here.

6. IMHO-NW: Bud Withers/Seattle Times (Apple Cup heroes are behind wheel), Amelia Veneziano/WSU Evergreen (Finally, a break from Pullman), G. George Ostrom/Bigfork Eagle (First appendicitis operation), Jennifer Gelband/New West Boise (Paint Idaho Rhinestony), Kalispell Daily Inter Lake (Election system needs overhaul), and Vince Grippi/Sportslink (Gonzaga as good without Morrison).

Online Poll: By pluralities of 30% and 24%, respondents to a Lewiston Tribune poll picked the 1960s and the 1970s, respectively, as the decades that produced the best music of the last seven decades.

*Cabela’s to anchor 200-acre megasite in Post Falls here.

*Small Idaho town tones down ordinance that would have required residents to bear arms here.

*The brother of the head coach for the University of Montana women’s basketball team died Monday while hiking on Mount Helena here.

*Driver cited for DUI in crash of two Boise school buses here.

Orbusmax Special: An Olympia woman could be going to jail — over a bad haircut?! here.

APhoto of the Day — 11/15/06

Perryville Elementary School student Natasha Sargent learns how to milk a cow with an artificial udder Tuesday during Adventures in Agriculture Day at the Kentucky School for the Deaf in Danville, Ky. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/The Advocate-Messenger, Clay Jackson)

SR Edit: Risch’s Grocery Sales Tax Plan Beats Otter’s

Complete editorial here

When the Legislature convenes in January, two proposals may be on the table – one from current Gov. Jim Risch, who calls for phasing out the tax on food altogether, the other from Gov.-elect Butch Otter, who’d rather target tax relief to the poor by raising the grocery credit on the state income tax. Either plan would be a marked improvement over the current system. Risch’s plan would blow a hole of more than $155 million in the budget. Otter’s plan is more targeted and complicated. However, Risch’s plan does something that Otter’s doesn’t: It eliminates a regressive tax on an essential product: food. It also provides relief where it’s most needed by low-income Idahoans – in the checkout line. Otter’s plan makes them wait until the end of the year to collect an income tax refund — DFO/Spokesman-Review.

Question: Which sales tax plan for groceries do you prefer?

Whippersnapper: SR Critics Reinventing West

1. Two men say Jim West molested them as Boy Scouts. One was suing, one had nothing to gain. West was known for pulling down boys’ shorts while swimming.

2. West worked closely with two other known child molesters (also scout leaders) at the same time period, but claimed he hardly knew them.

3. Jim West pursued teens and young men he wanted to have sex with, offering them government jobs, money and trips. A analogous situation would be an over-50 man in a position of authority and cruising for high school girls on the job?

4. I bet the paper knew of West’s bisexuality before this story but didn’t out him just for being gay. I heard that people in the Washington legislature already knew he only hired attractive young men in his office.

The stories were icky and written with way too much glee. Are they not true? Did the undercover computer guy force West to be a promiscuous gay man? Did the computer trap make West offer the fake kid a job in his office and gifts? Sometimes things that are wrong on many levels aren’t illegal.

This is exactly what Mark Foley was guilty of and so many of you, including Bob, jumped on him as a symbol of predatory, hypocritical sexuality.

Whippersnapper

WorldNetDaily Poll: Paying for Hostages

Question: Do you support paying terrorists to release hostages?

1. Yes, anything to bring loved ones home safely should be considered
2. Yes, it’s just money, and human lives are sacred, so it’s worth the price
3. Yes, if beheading is the alternative, then it’s OK
4. Yes, but it should be covert, and we should ‘officially’ deny any payment was made
5. It’s a tough call, but it boils down to the fact you cannot negotiate with terrorists
6. No, it’s ‘arms-for-hostages’ once again, so prosecute whomever made the payment
7. No, it creates an incentive for future kidnappings
8. No, the money in the Fox News case was used for arms, and the terrorists will kidnap more people
9. No, whatever happened to hunting down terrorists wherever they are, and no compromises?
10. Other

DFO: Nos. 7 & 9

For the rest of the WorldNetDaily report, click here.

Parting Shot — 11/14/06

With Thanksgiving Day almost here, many people around the Red River Valley are showing their holiday spirit with decorations and paintings like these on the outside of Weezy’s Restaurant in Blossom, Texas on Tuesday. (AP Photo/The Paris News, Sam Craft)

Question: Have you made Thanksgiving plans, yet?

Extra! Motorists Killed in WSP Shooting!

Rest of the story here

A motorist armed with an assualt rifle was shot to death by a Washington State Patrol trooper this afternoon north of Spokane, authorities said. The identities of the motorist and the trooper are being withheld. Pend Oreille County Sheriff’s Office and WSP are investigating the fatal confrontation, which stopped southbound traffic on Highway 2 for about two hours — Spokesman-Review.

Cis’s Question: Watching Channel 6 at the break and they are showing where a WSP shot a young man. The reporter is showing the scene.. there is wall to wall police cars. Even the reporter remarks as they span, that there is over 20 police cars from both sides of the state line. My question is … Who is watching the store? While they are all there?

Orange TV’s Answer …

Inside Huckleberries — 11/14/06

*Rich Roesler/Eye On Olympia e-mails: “Hey, I saw this personalized WA license plate today while working in Seattle: “O2BNCDA”. Blue Celica. License plate frame mentioned Finnish Americans. Spotted on the streets between Qwest Field and Safeco Field. I’m not sure if it’s a liberal pining for Canada (remember all the move-to-Canada talk from two years ago?) or an Idahoan missing the Lake City.”

*Sam reports: “I’m not sure if everyone is aware, but I thought I’d point your attention to tonight’s PBS “Frontline” about the Jim West scandal and the Spokesman-Review’s involvement in the case. Steve Smith will be in the program.” Click here.

*Huckleberries hears … that one of the two buses used by Idaho legislators touring the north county was pulled over late yesterday afternoon, in the Silver Valley. Seems there was a problem with one of the bus’s headlights. Hat Tip: Erica Curless.

*As you know, former CPD Blue Mike Kralicek was seriously wounded in a shootout in late December 2004 and that he and wife, Carrie, are now real estate agents. HBO got this e-mail today from Carrie: “We almost had our first listing a couple months ago in Grouse Meadows (just a few doors down from the incident). We laughed because we were asked if it would affect us. The answer is, ‘no.’ Bad things happen everywhere not just in Grouse Meadows. The police just recently had a house surrounded at gun point down the street from us in Post Falls. I have to admit I made Mike get out of our garage and further into the house. We have friends that live in Grouse Meadows and visit them occasionally.”

*BTW, you can put your hands together for Arpie for making the suggestion that HBO add a “Back to Huckleberries Online” to the comments feature (above the comment box), so you can return to the front page of the blog without click “back.” Arpie was also the one of suggested that we run “recent comments” at the top of the right rail, so it’s easy to see the recent commenters.

*For you sports fans, SR blogger Vince Grippi/Sportslink has an interesting question re: which high school team is best this year — Gonzaga or Lake City. Vince has a whole list of comparisons between the two talented teams here. And you should check out his blog here. Meanwhile, for Idaho high school sports, you should tune in Greg Lee/Idaho Preps here.

Editor Smith: Frontline “Disingenuous” re. West Show

Full post here

The long-in-production PBS Frontline show about the Jim West scandal airs tonight at 9 p.m. We have not seen the show. PBS routinely provides review copies to TV writers and has done so for this production. But they refused to give us a review copy so no one in our office has yet seen the production. (Some advance reviews are apparently available online.) I’ve heard various reports on its content, but will reserve meaningful response for tomorrow after the broadcast. Frontline producers explained to us — and apparently to others in the community — that their original intent to use Spokane and West as a jumping off point to discuss gay issues in America was derailed at the last minute by PBS honchos who wanted to focus only on the West scandal and recall. This is, at least, disingenuous. It was clear to us from the outset that their show was focusing exclusively on West. Outside of a conversation at the very beginning of their work, they never sought from us any information or insight on gay issues in Spokane. It always was West — Editor Steve Smith/Spokesman-Review, News Is A Conversation.

Related: New York Times rips Spokesman-Review for West coverage, more from Rich Roesler/Eye On Olympia.

Originally posted at 2:10 p.m.

That WSU Repub Border Wall Rally Is Blowing Up …

… into a national story. Remember? Seems campus Republicans were met by counterdemonstrators from the Left, including a professor or two who may have gone too far. Tom Forbes/Palousitics provides the following links:

*The WSU CRs will be on Fox News Channel’s Hannity and Colmes show

*A video featuring an unhinged professor improperly demanding student ID has been yanked by YouTube

(Palousitics provides an uncensored video link below)

*The students involved are pursuing legal action. Another copy of the video may be viewed here as well (click on bottom video link … you won’t believe the arrogance of the WSU prof on camera.

Now, It’s Donkeys Turn to Abuse System

Item: Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., backed funding for a bridge between Nevada and Arizona that could affect the value of property he owns nearby.

DFO: Looks like the ethically pure Demos have the first of many piles of dog poo to sweep under their rugs.

MelTorment: Here’s how the Elephants graciously handled the 1994 congressional takeover here.

Hat Tip: Out of Stater Tater

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/14/06

Author Harvey Manning poses in a park near Issaquah, Wash., in this Oct. 31, 2000 file photo. Manning, a conservationist and author of numerous Pacific Northwest mountaineering and hiking guides, including the popular “100 Hikes” series, is dead at 81 here. (AP File Photo)

New West/Boise: Pocatello to recount ballots here.

1. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., won the fourth-highest leadership post Tuesday as Senate Democrats organized their new majority following last week’s elections. Murray, who is in her third term, was named secretary of the Democratic caucus here. Related: U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert retains his House seat here.

2. Deer Park businessman Clifford Lee Helm stood in Spokane County Superior Court Monday and denied five times that he is guilty of vehicular homicide in deaths of five children last November here.

3. A 16-year-old who allegedly made harassing comments on the social networking Web site MySpace.com has been charged by the Asotin County Prosecutor’s office here.

4. A recently elected Republican legislator from Luther, Mont., has pleaded not guilty to a misdemeanor hunting charge of killing two elk while having only one tag here.

5. More Bad News for R’s: It took only one strange day, but Montana Democrats now have carved out tenuous majorities in both houses of the 2007 Legislature, thanks to a party-switching senator and four more votes that erased a Republican winner in a Laurel House district here.

6. IMHO-NW: Doug Clark/Spokesman-Review (Forecast: Meterological drivel ahead), Bert Caldwell/Spokesman-Review (Boeing should streamline), Helena Independent-Record (Cow explosions anyone?), Travis Galloway/UI Argonaut (Demo control won’t change anything), and Brian Murphy/Idaho Statesman (To play Johnson or not to play him).

Online Poll: 73.3% of 273 respondents to a Great Falls Tribune poll don’t expect Democrats to “significantly reform ethics rules.”

*Washington wants pilot project for scanning driver’s licenses at Canadian border here.

*Spokane County to consider paying $325,000 to two men who say they were molested by deputy in the late 1970s and early 1980s here.

*Photographer Mark Maher provides a YouTube pictorial of U.S. Senator-elect Jon Tester’s successful campaign via YouTube (and New West/Flathead Valley) here.

Orbusmax Special: Car thief-cop killer had 20 previous convictions here.

Lewiston Trib Poll: Which Decade Had Best Music?

Which decade produced the best popular music?

*1940s
*1950s
*1960s
*1970s
*1980s
*1990s
*2000s

WSU Evergreen: Profs Behaved Poorly @ Protest

Complete editorial here

Yelling racist and inflammatory comments accomplishes nothing. Yet some faculty and students chose to do this Nov. 2 on Glenn Terrell Mall during a demonstration on border security by the College Republicans. They ruined a chance for meaningful discussion and better understanding of different opinions. Professors abused their status as authority figures on campus by intimidating a College Republicans member running the demonstration. One professor claimed the student conduct code allowed him to demand the student to hand over his student identification card and stop videotaping the event. The code has no sections to back this statement up. Professors are leaders of discussion on this campus, and using authority to frighten students out of expressing their viewpoints is unprofessional and unproductive. Individuals and groups accomplish nothing when they use threats, intimidation or hateful words to express their opinions. Instead of furthering their interests or viewpoints, such tactics shut down conversation and alienate those with whom they disagree — WSU Evergreen Editorial Board.

DFO: Sounds like the student journalists have more sense than the nutty professors who don’t understand that First Amendment rights apply to the Right as well as the Left.

Question re: Old Man Winter

Issue: Ski resorts prepare to open early: Lookout could open Thursday; Schweitzer, Silver by this weekend/Tom Greene, Coeur d’Alene Press

DFO: I don’t ski or enjoy winter much, after Christmas. I do enjoy the season between Thanksgiving and Christmas, however, when downtown Coeur d’Alene resembles a Christmas card. However, I’ve mentally started to enjoy winter a little more when I decided that it ends on Feb. 2, Groundhog’s Day. After that, I consider any bad weather as a last tantrum or two of Jack Snow. But he’s more or less done. It has improved my outlook to know winter’s boundaries.

Question: Do you enjoy winter?

Hawk: Gambling Represents Tribes’ Revenge

Hawk: Gambling is the revenge of the Native Americans. They will slowly buy back the country one piece of land at a time, using the money of the people too irresponsible to make good decisions for their future. It is sort of a poetic justice. We broke their spirit by telling them that they were of no value and could not make it without our handouts and welfare, and they will in turn destroy the moral fiber of the community with casinos as they empty the bank accounts of those least able to afford the vice.

DFO: Hawk sounds a bit harsh here. However, I’ve had the same thought at times. The tribes are making beaucoup bucks from their gambling enterprises. Meanwhile, people are going broke or becoming addicted to gambling. I don’t blame the tribes for cashing in. The whole country seems to be buffaloed by the get-rich-quick promise of gambling. However, I do see the irony of the tribes getting a big piece of the action.

Parting Shot — 11/13/06

Fred Russell, left, age 27, the former Washington State University student who fled charges in three drunken driving deaths, enters a Colfax, Washington courtroom with Whitman County Deputy Paul Reavis (rear) and Sgt. Jodie Hamilton (front right) earlier today here. Russell entered innocent pleas/Dan Pelle, Spokesman-Review.

HBO’s Best of the Local Blogs — 11/13/06

Newby CODADave/Atmospheric Ruminations takes us in his Wayback Machine to the Portal Inn (above), the old Templin’s restaurant in Coeur d’Alene and the Shady Rest restaurant here.

Put your hands together for Bubblehead, a Friends of Huckleberries blogger from Boise, who hit the big time with a mention in Michelle Malkin’s blog here. Hat Tip: Bearable Bob.

*Katrina/Notes on a Napkin is still trying to lose the 10 pounds that she’s lugged around for as long as she can remember here. I’d guess she’s not the only one with a few extra pounds that refuse to go.

*Begins JBelle/The ‘Kan EWA: “I’m sad. I’m sad, sad, sad. I’ve got friends with a marriage in trouble and I have to come to grips with how it is when you can’t fix what somehow has jumped the tracks. I can’t fix it; I’d give just about anything to do just that. I’ve cried, I’ ve paced, I’ve remembered, recalled; connected the dots on so many things that were innocently random before.” Click here.

*Mommy Dearest admits that she and The Otis are “Christmas Ruiners” — you know, the type of individuals who can’t wait until Christmas, so they keep opening gifts from each other until there’s nothing left under the tree here.

*Kristin Hoppe/Not So Fast announced Nov. 10 that there’s 10 shopping days until her birthday. Could it be that Krisin and I share the same birthday, Nov. 20, albeit a few years apart?

*Marianne Love/Slight Detour is wondering what happened to fairness and good reporting as she reads her local newspapers here, and she’s wondering if her new home might be haunted here.

Meanwhile, Mari’s wondering who knocked down her fence here, Trish offers a link to the new issue of The River Journal here, Sue offers the haunting poem, “Once In November” here, Bearable Bob sez Bush 43 discovered that Bush 41 really was his daddy here, Idawa’s been in such a funk that he hasn’t notice he posted the same thing three times here, and Toad has negative reinforcement on his mind here.

Top Cutlines — 11/13/06

A woman floats in a hotspring pool in Chongqing, western China, Sunday. Fourteen contestants took part in a competition to see who could remain floating in the water for the longest period of time. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/EyePress)

Top Cutlines

1. More than a year later, Katrina victims continue to pray for help from FEMA — Family Phil.

2. “Oh Lord, please let me survive this and I promise you I will never take another cheap cruise line again” — Whatever.

3. A Chinese woman prays to the Awakened One that body fat increases buoyancy. Moments later, rescuers began CPR — Bill McCrory.

HM: Everyone else. (Not a lot of entries, but almost everyone is worthy of top-3. Thanx for the chuckles.)

For the rest of today’s cutline entries, click here.

MamaJD: Huckleberries Provided Access to Adults

Full post here

… Bottom line — the blog I have been commenting on (Huckleberries Online) has provided a relationship that I crave – contact with other adults on current topics that require intelligent commentary. I was feverish at first. Checking and re-checking every 15 minutes at times for ANY opportunity to provide my opinion. This blog, that wasn’t mine, would be so much better now that I am participating! Right? Who knew a stay-at-home mom could be SOOOOOO insightful? Well — within four days, I was asked which planet I lived on. I was accused of being someone else — someone I do not hold in high regard. I believe I had some witty moments that were balanced out by perhaps some kooky ones as well. The great thing is that for the first time, perhaps in my life, I provided MY opinions without regard to getting kudos and accolades from others I was trying to impress. I then began to wonder who the other commenters were. It could be the guy behind me at the local coffee shop — MamaJD
.

DFO: Put you hands together for the newest member of the North Idaho Blogosphere: MamaJD. Yeah, she’s been with us for awhile as a commenter. Now, she’s taken the step to become a blogger. The link above will lead you to her blog site.

Question: How many of you commenters/blurkers have met someone behind the pseudonyms at HBO? And was that a good experience?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/13/06

Laurie Olson,left, and her daughter Logan are all smiles after seeing the first printed issue of “Logan Magazine” Nov. 6, 2006. Logan, who suffered a brain injury in 2001, wanted to create a fashion magazine for young people with disabilities here/Colin Mulvaney, Spokesman-Review.

1. Dubya isn’t cuh-razy about that new girl in the good ol’ boys club, according to David Horsey/Seattle PI, here.

2. A Seattle police officer on her way to work this morning was killed by a man who police say was speeding in a stolen Honda through Seattle’s Interbay neighborhood here.

3. Saying the federal government pays no more than lip service to respecting the religious beliefs of American Indians, a federal judge in Wyoming has dismissed criminal charges against a Northern Arapaho man who shot a bald eagle last year for use in his tribe’s Sun Dance here.

4. Northwesterners can feel a little more snug as fall fades into winter this year with energy forecasters calling for a surplus of electricity to power homes and businesses here.

5. More moose than ever are believed to be living in Spokane and Kootenai counties, according to state biologists. So many moose are in the Inland Northwest that the giant, generally gentle creatures are increasingly making homes in terrain once considered unlikely habitat, including the wheat country of the Palouse here.

6. IMHO-NW: Doug Clark/Spokesman-Review (Cowardly Fred Russell), Dan Popkey/Idaho Statesman (Idaho congressmen must reach across aisle), Rebecca Nappi/Spokesman-Review (Iraq needs to fix itself), Marc Stewart/Coeur d’Alene Press (Legal system is complicated), and Mary Guiden/Seattle Times (Dixie Chicks make nice in Tacoma Dome).

Online Poll: 87% of 97 respondents to a Helena Independent-Record poll say President Bush did the right thing when he removed Donald Rumsfeld from the Pentagon.

*Broncos move up to No. 12 in BCS here.

*Montana George Fryett reflects back on being the first American POW in South Vietnam here.

*Gay bashing suspected in assault on Boise State student here.

*Idaho family featured on “Wife Swap” tonight here.

*Ian Johnson, the Boise State running back who leads nation in scoring, is hospitalized with collapsed lung here.

Orbusmax Special: Oregon unveils controversial Afghan-Iraqi war memorial here.

A Nervous Mother Worries About Her Soldier Son

Complete post by Jill Kuraitis here

Yesterday, my beloved firstborn left for the Middle East. He will not see combat and will be relatively safe, but still – the Middle East – for a year. First there is the whole year thing – it seems unimaginable right now – and then there is the location thing, and then there is the whole year thing. A year without rubbing his head and catching that clean scent that hasn’t changed since the day he was born. Twelve months without his company for dogwalks by the river. Four seasons without his familiar calls to chat about the latest political outrage, his lectures about my car-maintenance habits, and the way he cracks up. He doesn’t crack up often, but when he does – mercy but it’s a beautiful thing. Ten days ago I was more upset than I am now, even though Andrew is gone. Bush was still proclaiming his support for Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, it was uncertain whether the Democrats could take the House, and the Senate was but a crazy dream. Though tempered by Idaho’s disturbing election, my relief at the national results of November 7 has given me hope for relief for our military. As of yesterday, official reports say 2,847 of them have been killed; 21,077 have been wounded. Our sons and daughters — Jill Kuraitis/New West.

Question: Do you have a close friend of family member currently serving in Iraq or Afghanistan?

Kellogg Bloggin’: Jesus Was A Hard A**

Complete post here

Jesus was no prig. I’m amazed at how often he is portrayed in modern pictures as dreamy eyed or as emmasculated. Far from it. In the story in Mark, he stands up to the synagogue hierarchy and confronts not only their theatrics, but their economic practices, accusing them of “devour[ing] widows’ houses.” As I understand it, Jesus is talking about widows in both a literal and a figurative sense. Widow is metaphorical for the poor and those whose support in life is gone. My guess is that Jesus has witnessed widows who, having lost their husbands, are unable to meet some kind of mortgage payment and are heartlessly kicked to the curb — Raymond Pert/Kellogg Bloggin’.

DFO: There was a lot of interest re: religious things over the weekend. So, Raymond Pert’s post above jumped out at me as I was going through the North Idaho blogs for material this morning. Raymond Pert’s version of Jesus is fascinating — and mebbe far more accurate than you’ll hear in church on any given Sunday. Also, OrangeTV tried to post a link to Sholeh Patrick’s column about the different religious stands re: the afterlife. You can find it here.

Q: Do You Care If K-County Sets Bail Too High?

Issue: High bails cause some concern: North Idaho attorney calls it ‘Duncan effect’/Taryn Brodwater, Spokesman-Review

More Info: After Duncan’s arrest on triple-murder and kidnapping charges in Coeur d’Alene, reporters went to the doorstep of the Minnesota judge who had set Duncan’s bail at $15,000 in a molestation case just weeks earlier. The judge has been subjected to nationwide criticism for not setting bail higher given Duncan’s violent history. Relatives of Duncan’s Kootenai County victims also sued the judge. Gresback believes that judges post-Duncan are setting bails higher to avoid a similar public relations – and political – nightmare.

Question: On a scale of 1 to 10 (with one being: I don’t care at all), how much do you care if bail is set too high for a run-of-the-mill prisoner?


Remembering

Liberty Lynn Lasky, the 1-year-old daughter of Marine Cpl. Michael H. Lasky crawls on the floor during a memorial service for her father Sunday in Kenai, Alaska. Lasky was one of two Marines killed in Iraq on Thursday, Nov. 2, the Department of Defense said. (AP Photo)

Wall Street Journal: Will Demo Majority Hold?

Complete column here

In making his case to be elected to the top Republican post in the House in the next Congress—that of minority leader—Rep. John Boehner sounds this hopeful note: “Our ability to recover our majority is in our hands.” There is historical precedent for the optimistic view that a party repudiated at the ballot box can regain voters’ confidence in just two years. In 1952 Democrats lost control of the White House and Congress as Dwight D. Eisenhower was elected president. Two years later, Democrats retook Congress and then proceeded to hold the House for the next 40 years even as Republicans won six presidential elections. What many Republicans are wondering now is whether this is 1952 in reverse, a momentary setback for the GOP before it comes roaring back to take lasting congressional majorities. Or is this a replay of 1954, the beginning of a near-permanent Democratic majority? — Brendan Miniter/Wall Street Journal.

Question: Will the Demo majority hold in Congress? Or will the Repubs come roaring back in two years?

AM Hucks: Bare And Cold Can’t Beat the Rain

This & That: In the “Spirit Was Willing But The Flesh Was Weak” Dept., members of the Coeur d’Alene High Key Club earned props for proposing a “Dare to Bare the Cold” event Friday night. The goal of the program was to focus attention on the homeless. The Key Clubbers staged a clothing drive for the down-and-outers. Then, they busied themselves collecting large cardboard boxes to serve as makeshift shelters on the school’s football field. Thing is, “Dare to Bare the Cold” was postponed. Why? Bad weather … “If you voted for Demo Larry Grant for Congress,” advises Lewiston Tribune editorialist Tom Henderson, “don’t worry that Bill Sali was elected instead. He can’t do any damage. Residents of Idaho’s 1st Congressional District might as well have sent a potted plant to Washington.” (Read: Sali will make good copy for the media, but he won’t be effective) … Question (from Huckleberries Online commenter Reality Check): “OK the election’s over. Let’s get back to that recent junket (to the East Coast) taken at taxpayers’ expense by lame-duck Commissioner Gus Johnson. Is there any more information on that?” Answer: Stay tuned … Sightem: While stopped at Ironwood and Government Way, a Berry Picker spotted a handwritten message on the dirty rear-panel door of a local plumbing truck which read: “I wish my wife was this dirty” … Poet’s Corner: “The studio’s silent/and the lights have gone dim;/it’s a long time we’ll wait/for another like him” – The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“Ed Bradley, Reporter”).

Wild Card/Sunday — 11/12/06

Interesting day aboard the USS Huckleberries Saturday, HBOers. Gotta coupla local Pachyderms after me for most of the day. And, I believe, I held them off while picking up dog poop, watching football, going for a walk, and then watching “Mission Impossible 3” with my Sweetie. Picking up the dog poop put me in the right frame of mind to carry on the debate. Anyway, it’s a new day. And you never know what that brings. Make sure you read that terrific post by Dan of the County just below. For you own threads, play this Wild Card …

Wild Card/Saturday — 11/11/06

I’m beat from a full week in which the Dems overthrew Congress, Idaho R’s captured every state office for the first time since the ‘20s, and a 21-year-old thug with a distain for Jews put North Idaho on the nation’s map again. ‘Tis hard to keep up with everything. You can talk about any of the above. Or any of the below. Or anything you like with this first weekend Wild Card …

Fredericks: Honor Our Veterans Today

Doug Fredericks’ full comment here

“Today is Veterans Day, the one day set aside each year to honor all who have served our nation. Please in some small way take a moment to do so. As you scoot around town today, if you come across someone in a VFW or American Legion cap or such, please take a moment to nod and say thanks. Taking a few minutes for a conversation would be even better. If you have a neighbor who served, seek them out, look them in the eye and just let them know that you are thinking of them. If you have kids, make sure that they understand the significance of today and have them accompany you when you pay your respects to a veteran. If you have a relative that served, make darn sure you take time today to pass on your appreciation to them. And for goodness sake, if you know anybody who has a loved one in uniform at present, seek them out and thank them for their support of “their” military professional and ask that your thoughts be passed on to them.”

Question: Did you realize today’s Veterans Day, and do you plan to do anything special about it?

SR Edit: Assault Victim Denied Justice

Full Saturday editorial here

Incomprehensibly, 1st District Magistrate Debra Heise, of Sandpoint, brokered a plea bargain in which Davis pleaded guilty to misdemeanor battery rather than aggravated battery, a felony that carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison. Heise threatened to dismiss the charges, allegedly telling Boundary County Prosecutor Jack Douglas that “boys will be boys.” She sentenced Davis to 20 days on a work detail and ordered him to pay his victim’s medical bills.
The sentence was woefully inadequate, regardless of whether Davis’ actions and comments meet the criteria for a hate crime. A teenage girl suffered first- and second-degree burns on her legs, arm and buttocks and faces extensive reconstructive surgery as a result of the thuggish assault. Heise’s dismissive attitude toward this heinous crime raises serious questions about her judgment. So does her decision that a hate crime didn’t occur because the victim wasn’t Jewish. The favorable treatment given the witness by local law officers and a possible conflict of interest involving the defense attorney raise more questions. One thing is certain – Ilaura Fleck was denied justice — DFO/Spokesman-Review.

DFO: As I mentioned Friday night, human-rights leaders from throughout North Idaho will be meeting today to discuss this case and what should be done about this unreasonable sentence. Also, WorldNetDaily, a conservative online news service with a huge following, published a copy of the Bonner County Bee story about the crime and Magistrate Debra Heise’s ruling. This one’s far from over.

Red State Rebels: No To Bush Impeachment

Here’s how Julie/Red State Rebels replied to a fellow Idaho Dem who forwarded an email link to an “Impeach Bush” site:

No way … I emphatically disagree with this, as do most of our Democratic leaders including Speaker-to-Be Pelosi and DNC chair Howard Dean. Instead, we must achieve some major policy accomplishments for the American people. Raise the minimum wage and offer incentives to companies that create good jobs. Pass legislation to advance alternative energy. Start work toward more comprehensive health-care coverage. Find a way to get our troops home from Iraq and start making real progress against international terrorism, instead of making it worse. Americans did not elect Democrats to get mired in a year of impeachment hearings that would leave us with … President Cheney?! Americans elected a Dem majority to start getting something done after siix years of incompetence and corruption. If we can make some positive advances in the first months of the 110th Congress, then and only then would it be worthwhile to take some punitive measures against Bush. But I believe even that would be a waste of time. George W. Bush is now a lame duck whom history will judge most unkindly. America has many more urgent priorities than booting his sorry butt from the White House — Julie In Boise.

Question: What would happen if the new Democratic majority tried to impeach President Bush for leading the country into war in Iraq?

Parting Shot — 11/10/06

A raccoon stuck under the hood of car belonging to a Catfish Bend Casino employee is seen earlier today at the Port of Burlington parking lot in Burlington, Iowa. The raccoon was finally removed by Des Moines County Department of Natural Resources Conservation Officer Paul Kay. Kay planned on releasing the raccoon north of town. (AP Photo/The Hawk Eye, John Lovretta)

WorldNetDaily Picks Up Boundary County Story

Issue (from current WorldNetDaily Web site): Man given 20 days in jail after dropping girl in fire: Witnesses reported he said ‘Jews burn’ as he picked up 17-year-old/Bonner County Daily Bee

WND Comment Under Story from Former Resident: “This whole thing is sickening. Shame on the courts, attorneys and prosecutors involved. Next time it could be YOUR child being thrown in the fire by a drunken redneck. How would you feel? As they say, what goes around comes around. Glad I am far, far away from Bonner County now. ”

Question: How do you think Magistrate Debra Heise’s decision is going to play in the national media?

Top Cutlines — 11/10/06

This frame-grab image provided by Deb Larson shows a small, immature deer with a plastic jack-o’-lantern meant for collecting Halloween candy stuck on its head earlier this week in Cascade Township, Mich. You write the cutline. (AP Photo)

Top Cutlines:

1. Pictured is the North Idaho representative for Cabela’s - ‘The World’s Foremost Outfitter’ of hunting, fishing, and outdoor gear - sampling just a few of the treats the city officials of Post Falls, ID are more than willing to offer up, in addition to huge tax changes, to accommodate building a mega-store — VFW.

2. Nothing’s sacred at Disney these days, as witnessed by this clip from the upcoming live-action film “Nightmare Before Christmas 2: The Reincarnation of Bambi” — Family Phil.

3. Bambi, the chain-smoking deer, finds success with the latest smoking-cessation device: the pumpkin patch — Side Note.

HM: Bob & JohnA

For all of today’s cutline entries, click here.

Ed Bradley, Reporter

The studio’s silent
and the lights have gone dim;
it’s a long time we’ll wait
for another like him.

The Bard of Sherman Avenue

BrodH2O: No Love for Driving in the Snow

Full post here

I love the look of the snow in winter, but otherwise, there’s not a lot of love lost between me and Old Man Winter. I hate the cold. I hate scraping ice off my car windows. I hate wet socks and cold toes. I especially hate driving on winter roads. I admittedly fall into one of the groups of winter drivers that people can’t stand. One of my colleagues describes it this way: “You drive like an old lady.” And I do. I pretty much avoid the freeway in the winter because I have learned that it really pisses people off when you drive 25 mph on a freeway. So I take the back roads and crawl to work in my trusty Kia Rio. I think my fear of driving in the snow might have something to do with the time my snowtires came off. Literally came off my car — Mommy Dearest/BrodH20.

Question: What is your worst experience re: driving in the snow?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/10/06

Glacier National Park facility manager John Kilpatrick, right, and park worker Gary Danczyk walk past a washout on the Going-to-the-Sun Road about half a mile below the East Side Tunnel on Thursday. Heavy rains earlier this week caused extensive damage in the Montana national park here. (Robin Loznak/Glacier Park, AP Photo)

Stapilus 3-Fer: The Cantwell expansion, Boise blue: The Fischer take, Next up: 2008.

1. Fred Russell, the renegade accused of killing three fellow WSU students while driving drunk five years ago and then disappearing, is back on the Palouse and he’s so, so sowwy here.

2. Despite his arguments that citizens have the right to say “No” to their government, a local attorney was convicted of criminal trespassing for saying “No” to the war in Iraq in a National Guard recruiting office on North Division here.

3. Dave Tester’s little brother helped tip the scales of power in Washington, D.C., and he couldn’t be more proud. The Coeur d’Alene veterinarian can’t wait to be in the halls of the Capital Building next January when Jon Tester becomes a U.S. Senator for Montana here.

4. A report released by a Connecticut-based research group estimates that the war in Iraq and Afghanistan has cost Montana taxpayers more than $578 million since 2003, including $17 million in Helena and $33 million in Missoula here.

5. Montana State University will offer officials a security escort to their vehicle after a few football fans, upset with a fourth-quarter call, intimidated the officials and vandalized their vehicle after MSU’s 13-10 win over Northern Colorado last weekend here.

6. IMHO-NW: Jill Kuraitis/New West Boise (The State of Ada), Rebecca Nappi/Spokesman-Review (The hard work begins), Frank McGovern/UI Argonaut (Let the vengeance and healing begin, plus Noah Kroese cartoon), Jamie Kelly/Missoulian (Marijuana initiative: How Cheetos is that?), Bud Withers/Seattle Times (Hawaii not exactly joy trip to paradise).

61% of 355 respondents to a Lewiston Tribune poll say Potlatch Corp shouldn’t charge outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy its lands in central Idaho.

*Adam Morrison expected to make his first start against Sonics tonight here.

*Twin Falls father who killed his three children handed three life sentences here.

*4 more radical enviros plead guilty to string of firebombings here.

*Idaho vampire man sentenced to 8 years in prison here.

*Repub U.S. Sen. Craig Thomas of Wyoming is fighting aggressive form of cancer here.

Orbusmax Special: 9th Circuit sez Boise can’t lease property to rescue mission here.

CODADave: Bill Clinton Lives Large


Illustration: CODADave/Atmospheric Ruminations

Cabbage Boy: A Lot of Crimes Have Hate Element

Cabbage Boy (re: all the bantering about “hate crimes”): Can anyone tell me how any crime against humanity isn’t a “hate” crime? A crime is a crime. This guy obviously isn’t too bright equating a muslim-catholic as a jew. But no one here claims he was brilliant anyway. But to me, the issue is when is a crime made into a hate crime? Is it when a person of a classified “victim” group suffers a crime? A crime is a crime no matter the motivation. Whether it was pre-meditated and particularly hateful should factor into the sentencing. But the whole hate crime talk bugs me. If someone calls me an f*in bast*d before punching me, isn’t that a hate crime?

DFO: Cabbage Boy brings up an excellent point. I’m uncomfortable with super-sizing crimes because a “hate element” is involved. Obviously, hate of some sort is a motivating element in many crimes whether or not bigotry is involved, including rape and murder, of course. Criminalizing an individual’s thought process smacks of Thought Control. In the case of the thug who threw the 17-year-old into a bonfire, the judge could have handed down a stiff sentence, with or without the hate crime element. Then, she blew that opportunity.’

Question: Have we gone too far by making hate crimes a separate category?

Who’s Dumber: Mother-Son Conspirators? BC Cops?

A judge ruled this week that 285 marijuana plants seized in Boundary County last year can’t be used as evidence against a Naples man because law enforcement found the plants in an illegal search (Marijuana ruled out as evidence/Meghann Cuniff, Spokesman-Review).

Or

A Silver Valley woman was arrested Thursday on suspicion of conspiring with her inmate son to have a 15-year-old relative killed (Police say pair planned 15-year-old’s murder: They allegedly wanted to prevent rape testimony/Taryn Brodwater, Spokesman-Review).

Question: Who’s the biggest Born Losers here: The cops who seized the MJ crop without a proper warrant? The mother-son tag team who allegedly plotted to kill their close relative?

Quotable Quote: Might As Well Send A Potted Plant


Thom George illustration

“If you voted for Larry Grant for Congress, don’t worry that Bill Sali was elected instead. He can’t do any damage. Residents of Idaho’s 1st Congressional District might as well have sent a potted plant to Washington — Tom Henderson/Lewiston Tribune editorial writer.

Trish: So-Called “Hate Crime” Begs More Questions

Complete comment here

As for whether this is a hate crime … the facts reported would lead me to ask a whole lot more questions before making that determination. It would seem an initial element would be the hate (or rage) portion of the crime, of which I’ve heard no hint in the reporting. In addition, it appears that the participants that evening (including the perpetrator and victim) were all drunk, suggesting that neither their reporting nor their perceptions were 100 percent liable. I also find the victim’s actions confusing in the context of a hate crime - personally, I think I would get the hell out of Dodge if someone truly attempted to burn me up in a fit of rage against my (supposed) religious or ethnic background, yet the girl apparently wanted to stay and party more. (This might be a reflection of the previous question about the reliability of drunken actions.) It’s understandable that most of us are oversensitive to the question of ‘hate crimes’ given our previous history here, but I think it’s a shame that people are willing to jump to conclusions regarding three people whose previous reputations suggest nothing that would make the suggested improper behavior a likelihood — Trish Gannon.

Related: Light sentence angers family: Judge says girl tossed into fire wasn’t victim of hate crime/Bill Morlin, Spokesman-Review

AM Hucks: Haircut & a Dose of Reality

Full comment here

On Wednesday, Huckleberries commenter Truthseeker offered a list of 10 post-election wishes, including such things as dump Donald Rumsfeld (done), find a solution to Iraq and get Tom DeLay off television. The best was No. 10. Quoth: “Both parties need to rethink their hairstyles for men. The meticulously coiffed, (Dirk) Kempthornian ‘do is a sure sign of a bloated ego and a severe case of ‘me-it-itis.’ (You reading this Butch? How ‘bout you, Bear Goedde?) Start going down to the local barber shop with the 70-plus-year-old barber who has been cutting hair since the ‘50s, and actually pay for your haircut, out of your own pocket money. Have a conversation with him and the guys that are hanging around. Learn what’s going on with their kids and grandkids … discuss the merits of a 3-4 defense, laugh out loud with them over the 55-year-old guy ahead of you, who’s in the chair and hates to have his ear hair trimmed ‘cause it makes him feel old, listen to the fishing stories and thumb through the American Rifleman magazine. Enjoy their company and their extraordinary commonness, and thank goodness that every town in your district is full of people just like them – and count your blessings for the honor of working for them. If any elected official locally is looking for such a place, simply go see Jerry, down at Jerry’s Barber Shop on Government Way in Hayden. A good haircut, the razor around the ears, and a great dose of reality is guaranteed. Same can be said for the shop on Best Avenue.” Pay for your haircut? You dreamin’, Truthseeker.

Wild Card/Thursday — 11/9/06

Everyone recover from their Election Night hangover (figuratively speaking, of course)? I notice that state Sen. John “Landslide” Goedde is reaching out to the teachers after narrowly escaping the clutches of upstart Steven Foxx here. And Foxx is recovering from having his house vandalized here. I’ve poked fun at “The Bear.” But he’s a good man and a good senator. I’ve poked fun at him in the past. So, I believe, it’s time for me to extend to him a fig leaf, er, olive branch, too. Now, here’s your daily Wild Card …

HBO Has Been Brought to You Today by No. 150,000

Item: 150,000 Iraqis killed by insurgents: Health minister gives government’s first overall casualty estimate/Associated Press

Or, the number of Iraqis killed by their own people who, of course, are “insurgents” rather than “terrorists.” Or, one fourth the number of the Iraqis wounded by terrorist, er, insurgent acts. Or, do they still count as dead and wounded, if their side does the carnage rather than an inadvertent American bomb or bullet?

Question: Did She Say “Boys Will Be Boys”?

Several of you have asked questions about the “boys will be boys” quote, accredited to 1st District Magistrate Debra Heise, and a transcript from the plea-bargain discussion in her chambers. I talked to Bill Morlin this afternoon. He tried to talk to Heise about the quote after the sentencing, but she said through her bailiff that she wouldn’t answer any questions from him. Prosecutor Jack Douglas also refused to answer Bill’s questions. Bill was careful to point out in his story that the “boys will be boys” quote came from the victim’s father via Prosecutor Jack Douglas. Heise did not address the quote from the bench. But she made a similar statement when she depicted Davis’ acts as a youthful indiscretion fueled by alcohol.” Heise had ample opportunity to address the “boys will be boys” statement that was inflaming the community. BTW, discussions in a judge’s chambers are private and no transcript is taken. This allows a judge to speak his/her mind. Unfortunately.

DFO

Top Cutlines — 11/9/06

Candidates for the Miss Earth 2006, some holding tree saplings and displaying placards with environmental messages, pose for photographers during their media presentation Thursday Nov. 9, 2006, at a hotel in Manila, Philippines. You write the cutline. (Bullit Marquez, AP Photo)

Top Cutlines

1. Proof Big Chestnuts grow from little saplings — Paul L. Ferguson.

2. Each contestant promised to help the earth by reducing the amount of brain power they used — Family Phil.

3. The serious group cracked up when one of the Miss Earth contestants let out some greenhouse gas — Jesse Tinsley.

HM: Everyone else … funny stuff

For the rest of today’s cutline entries, click here.

The New Woman in Dubya’s Life

President Bush, right, shakes hands with Democratic House Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi of Calif., during their meeting in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington Thursday. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

BrodH20: Good, Bad Moments in Parenting

Complete post here

There are moments that you doubt yourself as a parent. Like when your toddler won’t stop biting her playmates. Like when one of your kids talks back to you or says a bad word. … And then there are moments that let you know you’re doing OK. Like when you’re having a bad day and your kid tells you your “the prettiest mommy ever” or makes up a “knock, knock” joke just to try and cheer you up. Like when someone else tells you what good kids you have — Mommy Dearest/BrodH20.

Question: How would you add to either list?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/9/06

Ilaura Fleck, right, 17, of Bonners Ferry walks out of the Boundary County Courthouse on Wednesday with her mother Haleema, of Spokane after the lenient sentencing of Brian Todd Davis, the man who was accused of throwing Ilaura Fleck into a bon fire after saying “Jews burn” here. (Kathy Plonka, Spokesman-Review)

New West: Are Demos riding wave of their own in new, blue West here?

1. A fugitive, Frederick D. Russell, wanted on charges of drunken driving in a crash that killed three people in Eastern Washington was extradited today after losing a yearlong legal battle to stay in Ireland here.

2. More than eight million eyes will watch a Jerome family on Monday night when they appear on a national TV show. The Minks — 48-year-old Dan, 30-year-old Kimberly and their 11-year-old son, Cody Lamb — will be featured in an episode of “Wife Swap,” an ABC show in which the mothers in two families with radically different values switch places for two weeks here.

3. A Kalispell man died Tuesday in a Florida hospital as a result of injuries sustained while competing in an Ironman triathlon in the Gulf of Mexico here.

4. Property rights measures rejected in Idaho, Washington, other states here.

5. A Montana woman was sentenced to eight years in prison for shooting her husband to death after he handed her a gun and dared her to during a drunken argument in April 2005 here.

6. IMHO-NW: Doug Clark/Spokesman-Review (Pure political slaughter), Randy Stapilus/Ridenbaugh Press (Boise blue), Doug Floyd/Spokesman-Review (Rumsfeld’s departure welcomed), Jill Kuraitis/New West (Idaho Election Notes: WTH?), and G. George Ostrom/Bigfork Eagle (Calf paths and Whang Doodles).

Online Poll: 51% of 1131 respondents to an Idaho Statesman poll say Donald Rumsfeld’s departure will cause change in the Iraq war.

*Downtown Olympia passed a urine test here.

*Rain damages Glacier’s Going-to-the-Sun Highway, Many Glacier Hotel here.

*WSU license plate to get new look in spring ‘07 here.

*An 18-year-old burglary suspect from Hayden was found dead in a Spokane prison cell here.

Orbusmax Special: Whitman College schedules symposium after student wears blackface here.

Question: Was Justice Served in Bonners Ferry?

Issue: Light sentence angers family: Judge says girl tossed into fire wasn’t victim of hate crime/Bill Morlin, Spokesman-Review

More Info: A Spokane man whose stepfather works in law enforcement was sentenced Wednesday to 20 days on a work detail by a judge who brokered a plea bargain – saying “boys will be boys” in describing how a teenage girl was burned in a bonfire. Brian Todd Davis, 21, was accused of saying “Jews burn” as he threw 17-year-old Ilaura Fleck into a bonfire on July 27 during a beer keg party on Katka Mountain in Boundary County.

Question: Does the sentence fit the crime?

Wall Street Journal: A Referendum on GOP Failure

Complete editorial here

Tuesday’s Democratic election victory was by any measure decisive, yet in the perspective of history also unsurprising. In the sixth year of a two-term Presidency, Americans rebuked Republicans on Capitol Hill who had forgotten their principles and a President who hasn’t won the Iraq war he started. While a thumping defeat for the GOP, the vote was about competence, not ideological change. This is not to minimize the Democrats’ victory, which they deserve to savor after several frustrating election nights. Credit in particular goes to Rahm Emanuel and Chuck Schumer, who led the House and Senate efforts to pick candidates who could win in GOP-leaning states. Their leaders, notably Speaker-in-waiting Nancy Pelosi, also kept in check their ideological ambitions to make Tuesday a referendum on Republican governance. It was a shrewd strategy — Wall Street Journal.

Question: What surprised you most about Tuesday’s election?

AM Hucks: North Idaho Winners, Losers

It was easy to pick winners and losers on the national level Tuesday. Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and the Demos are certainly in the first category. President George W. Bush, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and a whole gaggle of defeated Repub incumbents fill the second category. But what about the winners and losers here? Steven Foxx, the Lake City High grad who almost bagged state Sen. John “The Bear” Goedde, was a winner. He made political inroads in Deep Purple District 4 (Coeur d’Alene) and should be a force if he decides to run for City Council again next year. Other winners: North Idaho legislators (all incumbents return and ex-Post Falls City Administrator/Mayor/Councilman Jim Hammond replaces retiring fellow Repub Dick Compton in Senate District 5). Water users (the aquifer now has a bona fide protection district and a funding source to maintain its purity). Bonner County (Back to the Future commish wannabe Bud Mueller was denied the keys to the courthouse again). Losers: 3,252 voters who cast ballots for “European-American” activist Stan Hess in the five-way race for North Idaho College trustee (Ron Vieselmeyer sí, Hess no). Idaho Democrats (close but no cigar for Congress, governor and superintendent of schools). Proposition 1 supporters (whaddya think this is – Washington?). Proposition 2 supporters (we’re smarter than Oregon). Gay marriage (seven noes outta eight states mean you’ll always have Arizona). Citizens who failed to exercise their right to vote in the exciting 2006 elections.

Wild Card — The Morning After — 11/8/06

Earlier today, I got ripped by a coupla diehard conservatives who complained that my political views don’t reflect Idaho values. In other words, they took exception to my vote for 7 R’s, 7 D’s, and one I. Mebbe my views don’t reflect their particular district. But they definitely reflect mine: District 4 (Coeur d’Alene). I ran some numbers. District 4 is as Deep Purple, as I am now: 6,062 residents voted for Demo Steven Foxx or one of the two third party candidates in the Senate District 4 race and only 5728 voted for Republican winner John Goedde. In the two House races in Coeur d’Alene, 12,220 voted for the Demos and 11,353 for the Repubs. In other words, I reflect the values of my district very well. Even if I didn’t? So what. Here’s your Wild Card …

Question: Impeachment Off the Table: Pelosi

Issue: Pelosi sez: Impeachment off the table in YouTube statement here.

Question: Do you think the Demos should try to impeach George Bush for the war in Iraq?

Truthseeker: My Post Election 10 Wishes

Complete comment here

Both parties need to rethink their hairstyles for men. The meticulously coiffed, Kempthornian do is a sure sign of a bloated ego and a sever case of “me-it is.” (you reading this Butch?, How bout you Bear?) Start going down to the local barber shop with the 70+ year old barber who has been cutting hair since the fifties, and actually pay for your haircut out of your own pocket money. Have a conversation with him and the guys that are hanging around. Learn what’s going on with their kids and grandkids, make jokes about your women-folk, discuss the merits of a 3-4 defense, laugh out loud with them over the 55 year old guy ahead of you, who’s in the chair and hates to have his ear hair trimmed cause it makes him feel old, listen to the fishing stories and thumb through the American Rifleman Magazine. Enjoy their company and their extraordinary commonness and thank goodness that every town in your district is full of people just like them – and count your blessings for the honor of working for them. If any elected official locally is looking for such a place, simply go see Jerry, down at Jerry’s Barber Shop on Government Way in Hayden. A good haircut, the razor around the ears, and a great dose of reality is guaranteed. Same can be said for the shop on Best Avenue — Truthseeker.

Question: Do you have a postelection wish?

Inside Huckleberries — 11/8/06

*The Gallatin Group provides a behind-the-scenes view of the Northwest’s winners and losers from yesterday’s elections here. Hat Tip: Becky Nappi

*Back to the Future BCommish wannabe Bud Mueller hung up on SReporter Erica Curless when she called for comment today, muttering something re: You guys wouldn’t get what I said right anyway.

*A group of Coeur d’Alene High School students in the school’s “Key Club” - a public service group - is holding a clothing drive this week to help the homeless. The teens had planned on spending Friday night on the football field using cardboard boxes as makeshift shelters. They were going to call it “Dare to Bare the Cold.” Thing is, it was postponed. Why? Bad weather. Hat Tip: Meghann Cuniff

*Congressman-elect Bill Sali has won factcheck.org’s “Who Needs Enemies Award” for being the target of that accurate advertisement in which fellow Repubs call him names here. Hat Tip: Opinion Editor Doug Floyd.

*Cameraman sends a link from Salon that lists his home away from home, Rexburg, Idaho, as the reddest place in America here.

*Overheard on radio from Al Franken: “I don’t want to toot our own horn, but it was all Air America. Now we can finally go bankrupt. What? We are? I guess we already are.” Hat Tip: Jesse Tinsley.

*How bad was it for Republicans nationwide last night. In South Dakota, a dead Demo challenger defeated an incumbent Repub commissioner here. Hat Tip: Sherry Atkins.

*Remember how someone was bragging online last night re: the impact of his direct mailing in Bonner County? Well, here’s an interesting number from the Bonner County final results: Larry Grant and Jerry Brady did better in Bonner County than Kootenai County. Bill Sali beat Grant by only 37 votes in B.C. and Otter finished only 428 votes ahead of Brady in B.C. Otter and Sali each won by around 400 votes in Kootenai County.

Take 5: What Is This?

The AP photo by Jim Bryant above is (choose one):

1. Virginia’s U.S. Sen. George Allen trying to swim against the tide and save the Republicans Senate majority.

2. Idaho Republicans holding out against the swelling sea change.

3. Rummy shuffling off to buffalo.

4. Spokane Commissioner Phil Harris drowning his sorrows.

5. A salmon crosses the flooded Sokomish Valley Road, Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2006, near Belfair, Wash. (AP Photo/Jim Bryant)

Other?

McKenzie: Steve Groene Not Only One Suffering

Complete letter published in Coeur d’Alene Press here

As Mark McKenzie’s brother, I am shocked that Steve G. would act in the manner in which he is. Almost all of the items in the house were removed by the cleanup crew. The house was left shut up for quite some time. There was rotting blood and food closed up in there, and the windows were boarded up. I personally invited Steve out there to get what he thought he needed. Steve did not want personal items but items of value, mostly electronics, including a TV, VCR and a PlayStation. All of the items where locked up in a storage shed located at the house, which was broken into many times. Steve never asked for any true personal items. He never asked for the kids’ favorite toys or photos. If he would have gone out there when the cleanup crew was working, he could have asked for items that could have been cleaned. He never did — Steve McKenzie/Otis Orchards.

Question: What is your reaction to the letter to the editor from Mark McKenzie’s brother, Steve?

Hat Tip: I.B. Lurking

Results — Washington and Idaho

*You can follow Idaho results as they come in here.

*You can follow Washington results as they come in here.

*Kootenai County Elections Department here

*Idaho legislative races here

*Election results from across the country from CNN here.

*Electoral-vote.com breakdown here

Winners & Losers in Election ‘06

Obviously, national Demos were big winners on Election Day. Ditto, specifically, for future House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Leader Harry Reid. Also obvious who some of the losers were: national Repubs, George W. Bush, Donald Rumsfeld. Closer to home, I’d say the winners include Idaho Repubs, who swept all state seats, Butch Otter, Bill Sali, et al. Here are some other winners and losers:

Winners: Steve Foxx (if he can keep his organization together he can win a seat on the City Council or in the next legislative elections), North Idaho legislators (all incumbents return and Jim Hammond should be a solid replacement for Dick Compton in Post Falls), Bonner County (Bud Mueller’s attempt to take control of the courthouse again was solidly rejected).

Losers: European-American activist Stan Hess (came in fifth in five-way NIC trustee race), Bud Mueller (rejected almost 2-to-1), backers of Proposition 1 and 2.

Question: Can you think of other winners/losers from Election Day?

APhoto of the Day — 11/8/06

President Bush takes part in a news conference in the East Room of the White House this morning. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Question: Do You Believe D’s Won’t Get Even

Issue: Pelosi vows to work for all Americans, with Bush and GOP/Marisa Lagos, San Francisco

Nancy Pelosi: “Democrats are not about getting even, Democrats are about getting the American people ahead,” she said. “I will say, as I have said before, that impeachment (of President Bush) is off the table … . I very, very much respect that I will be speaker of the House, not of the Democrats.”

Question: Do you believe the D’s in Congress will be gracious?

Extra! Rumsfeld to Resign

Then-CIA Director Robert Gate testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington in this April 2, 1992 file photo. Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, architect of an unpopular war in Iraq, intends to resign after six stormy years at the Pentagon, Republican officials said Wednesday. Officials said Gates would replace Rumsfeld. (AP Photo/John Duricka, File)

Hat Tip: Thom George

The Otis: God Rules World, Butch Rules Idaho

Mommy Dearest: “So what do you think of last night’s election, Boo?”

The Boo: “Election? What’s that. Is that a cartoon?”

MD: “What do you think of the Democrats gaining seats?”

The Boo: “I don’t know what that is. I do not know what that is.”

The Boo: “Who’s that?” (Pointing to picture of Butch Otter on front page of newspaper.)

The Otis: “That’s the state’s new governor. He’s in charge”

The Boo: “God’s in charge of the state, Daddy.”

The Otis: “No, God’s in charge of the world. Butch Otter’s in charge of the state.”

For the rest of the BrodH20 blog post by Mommy Dearest, click here.

Idawa: Not Expecting Much to Change

Idawa: I can’t say that I’m too optimistic for anything to change despite the power shift. The fact that one party no longer controls DC means that the people have power back and it isn’t vest in one party anymore, and this might mean a return to the middle, which is probably best for all of us. For Washington State, I hope the M. Cantwell can bring back the sales tax exemption that the Rs hijacked and ran into the ground, other than that I’m sure it will be more of the same. But maybe I’m just too pessimistic.

Kristen: Welcome back to gridlock, hopefully little will be accomplished.

DFO: If the D’s approach Congress with the same arrogance that the R’s have, they’ll be the ones with jittery nerves two years from now. However, if they can learn to govern from the middle and eschew corruption — two big ifs — they could be the ones in the driver’s seat for some time. The R’s lost because they ran from their core values, especially fiscal responsibility.

Goedde Beats Foxx By 192 Votes …

… with 2 Coeur d’Alene precincts left to count — 5151-5150.

12:59 a.m.: Goedde leads Foxx by 192 votes with one precinct left to count.

Update: The 12:59 a.m. total obviously was final. Obviously the Foxx wounded “The Bear” but he didn’t kill The Bear. Wonder if “The Bear” will be humbler in the future?

Original post: 12:37 a.m.

AM Hucks: Politics, Pankillers Make Readers’ Day

On Election Day, I asked readers of Huckleberries Online to complete this sentence: “It would make my day, if …” Their responses included: “REAL common sense overrules political radicals of all parties” (Cis) … “I was confident all of my children voted” (JBelle) … “JBelle was okay with 2 out of 3” (PDX Pup) … “The political (ads) suddenly stopped and never ever came back” (Toadman) … “All the leaves on my beach would blow into the lake” (Frum Helen Back) … “The Republicans learn a lesson without our country suffering for their stupidity” and “We get the elected officials we need rather than what we deserve” (Cabbage Boy) … “Sali wins … and when National Breast Cancer Awareness Month comes up next October, Sali can expound on the floor of the House about how all those breast cancer victims had it coming to them, God’s revenge, don’t you know, because obviously, they had abortions” (Green Libertarian, tongue firmly cheeked) … “I found someone who could fix my leaking basement” (Raymond Pert) … “The wisdom teeth extraction pain goes away (not likely, sigh), or I can manage to eat solid food again (again, not likely)” (Holly) … “My backyard fence is still standing. Man, when will this wind and wetness let up?” (Bent) … “VERIZON GETS ITS INTERNET CIRCUITS FIXED. Computers all around the nation haven’t been able to get online for two days now. I’m typing THIS from the CDA PUBLIC LIBRARY. Bah humbug” (CDADave) … How would you have finished the sentence?

Signing Off …

… I hate to leave Huckleberries Central with Sali heading to Congress, Goedde holding on by his fingernails against hard-charging Foxx, and Bonner County hanging in the balance. But I’m bushed as in tired not George Bushed. I wonder what the leader of the former dominant party will say tomorrow when the smoke clears, while Joe Lieberman’s enjoying the last laugh. Seems that whoever offers Joe its party nomination for the presidency in ‘08 controls the Senate. I’ll see you back here around 9 a.m. tomorrow. It’s been fun.

Crossett, Rich Leading Bonner County Races

Bonner County commissioner race

Todd Crossett (D): 66.10% (1184)
Bud Mueller (R): 33.89% (607)

&

Lewis Rich (R): 44.51% (787)
Karl Dye (w): 30.42% (538)
Wayne Stotts (I): 25.05% (443)

For Those Keeping Score @ Home …

… There’s still 11 of the 24 precincts in Coeur d’Alene that haven’t been counted … In other words, the race between incumbent John Goedde and Steve Foxx for state Senate and incumbent Marge Chadderdon and Bonnie Douglas for state rep aren’t over. Stay tuned.

BTW, I just talked to Dan of the County (who sounded tired for some reason). He said that the election count is going smoothly. But that his elections office has been overwhelmed a bit by the number of ballots.

Former NIC Student Winning Alaska Guv Race

Sarah Palin (right), the Sandpoint native and former NIC/UI student, appears headed for victory in the Alaska gubernatorial race. With 51% of the vote counted, she’s leading her Democratic challenger 52-38% here

Hat Tip: Cabbage Boy

Propositions 1, 2 Lose; Gay Marriage Ban Wins

The rest of the story here

Idaho voters approved a constitutional ban on gay marriage today, and rejected a proposition that would have limited the power of local governments to make land-use decisions. With 25 percent of 952 precincts reporting, more than 66 percent of Idaho voters were in favor of the amendment, which not only bans gay marriage but also any domestic unions outside of traditional marriages. … Proposition 2, which pitted private property rights against the power of local governments to make land-use decisions, lost with more than 76 percent of voters casting no votes in early returns. With 221 out of 952 precincts reporting, only about 23 percent of voters were in favor of the proposal — Associated Press.

Question: Are you satisfied with these results?


Can Someone Tell Huckleberries Central …

… How European-American activist Stan Hess has garnered 1371 votes or 10.9% of the vote so far in the five-way North Idaho College trustee vote?

Dick Haugen: Here Comes “The Bear” Goedde

SENATE LEG DIST 4

STEVEN L. FOXX (DEM) 3,216 46.28 %
JOHN W. GOEDDE (REP) 3,423 49.26 %
RAY J. WRITZ (CON) 145 2.09 %
JEREMY PAUL BOGGESS (IND) 165 2.37 %


STATE REPRESENTATIVE LEG DIST 4 POS A
BONNIE DOUGLAS (DEM) 3,226 46.58 %
MARGE CHADDERDON (REP) 3,699 53.42 %


STATE REPRESENTATIVE LEG DIST 4 POS B
GEORGE C. SAYLER (DEM) 3,941 56.50 %
SHARON CULBRETH (REP) 3,034 43.50

Question: Why are the three D’s doing so well in Coeur d’Alene?

North Idaho College Trustee — Vieselmeyer

Ron Vieselmeyer: 34.01% (2508)
Jim Coleman: 24.76% (1826)
Dennis Conners: 16.65% (1228)
Bill Brooks: 15.62% (1152)
Stan Hess: 8.938% (659)

20:48:34

Question (from Identity Thief)

Was there really a bumper sticker in Bonner County reading “Smoke BUD-Don’t vote for him”?

Several States Pass Gay-Marriage Bans

Issue: States rejecting same-sex marriage: Voters approve amendments in South Carolina, Wisconsin, Virginia/Associated Press

More Info: Eight states had ban-gay-marriage amendments on their ballots; results were pending in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, South Dakota and Tennessee. Though similar amendments passed previously in all 20 states to consider them, gay-rights activists nursed hopes that the streak might be broken this year in at least one state. Colorado voters had an extra option - a measure that would grant domestic-partnership rights to same-sex couples.

More Dead D’s Vote Than Dead R’s

The rest of the story here

New York’s new statewide database of registered voters contains as many as 77,000 dead people on its rolls, and as many as 2,600 of them have cast votes from the grave, according to an analysis by the Poughkeepsie Journal. The analysis is the first to examine the potential for errors and fraud in New York’s 3-month-old database, although the same method has been used in other states. It matched names, dates of birth and ZIP codes in the state’s database of 11.7 million voter registration records against the same information from the Social Security Administration’s records of 77 million deaths dating back to 1937. … Democrats who cast votes after they died outnumbered Republicans by more than a 4-1 ratio. The reason: Most of them came from Democrat-dominated New York City, where a higher population produced more matches — Rochester Democrat & Chronicle.

DFO: Obviously, Demos have a better organization in the herafter than Republicans.

Hat Tip: Dorene

What If …

… state Rep. Bill Sali, R-Kuna, wins Idaho’s 1st Congressional District seat — and becomes a freshman member of a Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives?

Separated @ Birth: Rick Santorum & Trekkie

Hat Tip: DanG

Question: In which episode and sci-fi program did the creature above appear. (The one on the right)?

Related: Pennsylvania: Santorum booted from Senate: Democrat Bob Casey defeats 3rd-ranking Republican/Associated Press

Par-TEE, Par-TEE … Where They’re @ Tonight

*Post Falls Community Volunteers will again be providing a place on election night for nonpartisan participation in the election results. This will be at Templin’s — starting around 7 p.m. Templin’s will provide snacks, there will be some door prizes, the results as they come in from the county will be shown on the BIG screen. You can enjoy the fun, no matter what side of the fence you are on.

*The official GOP gathering is at the Highlands upstairs in the lounge starting at 8 p.m.

*All the Democrats of Districts 4 and 5 are meeting at Crickets about 8 p.m.

*District 4 Republicans — Goedde, Chadderdon and Culbreth will be at the Fort Sherman Café

*District 5 Republicans — Nonini, Henderson, Hammond — will be at Templins.

*Todd Tondee is partying at the Hot Rod Café in Post Falls.

*Tom Macy went on vacation.

*Bonner County Republicans will be holding their “Many Happy Returns” party at the Powerhouse Grill in Sandpoint. Elected officials are putting out some snacks and thanking supporters and waiting for results from the courthouse across the parking lot and posting the numbers as they arrive — Legally Blonde.

DFO: If you hear something of note at one of the parties, you should give me a call at 765-7125, so I can post it at Huckleberries Online. Also, tell the computer geek at the various parties to switch over to Huckleberries Online for the latest scuttlebutt.

Visiting With The Ghost of Elections Past …

… Trust Gus loses, bans HBO from courthouse


Illustration/Stebbijo

… Where have you gone, Siggy and Rami?


Siggy @ 95 & Appleway

… Spen-sah Enjoys His Handiwork, Todd’s Pizza


Headlines Now Atop The Drudge Report …

Voting Machines Woes Cause Early Delays … Polls ordered to stay open late in Indiana… Denver: Problems… Fixing charges fly in Utah town… KY Poll Worker Charged With ‘Choking Voter’… 100s Get Wrong Ballots In Central Florida… FBI Investigating Va. Voter Calls… Dem lawyers in TN going to court to keep polls open late… FEDS SEND 850 OBSERVERS TO 22 STATES… BOMB THREAT: WISCONSIN… RAGE: Man Smashes Touchscreen in PA… ABC: Preliminary Exit Poll Results Show Disdain for Bush… GOP: BEWARE OF EXIT POLLS… Chelsea Clinton runs into voting problems…

Washed-Out Roads Strand Clark Fork Residents

Spring Creek Road in Clark Fork, Idaho washed out. It took the phone lines with it, and exposed the city’s water line. Crews are dumping rock there trying to stabilize the banks that are left. (Photo by Trish Gannon/The River Journal)

Dozens of homes and residents near Clark Fork, Idaho have been stranded after rain-swollen creeks washed out two roads Tuesday afternoon. County and state officials are also scrambling to free a massive debris jam that threatens to take out a major bridge in the area, said Barbara Babic, spokeswoman for the Idaho Transportation Dept. “It’s about 50 or 60 feet of debris,” she said Tuesday at about 2 p.m. “Trees are coming down. It’s not just little twigs and whatnot.” Upper Pack River Road at Hellroaroaring Creek is now closed because of flooding, according to the Bonner County Road dept. East Spring Creek Road leading into Clark Fork is also washed out near the confluence of Lightning and Spring creeks — James Hagengruber/Spokesman-Review. Full story here.

Monster Hat Tip: Trish Gannon/The River Journal

Cabbage Boy: I Hate Kool-Aid, But Not Sali

Cabbage Boy: Voting for Sali makes me a kool-aid drinker? I hate cool-aid. I voted for one demo, one independent, left a few blanks and gave my wife permission to make up her own mind on two ballot initiatives. Does that make me progressive?

DFO: Be careful re: voting for D’s. I started by voting for one. Then, another. When the world as we know it didn’t come an end, I voted for others. Now, I split my ballot almost equally. I also find myself humming old Joan Baez anthems and resisting the urge to end editorials with the words: “Power to the People.” If you’re not careful, your wife will be telling you how to vote. See where voting for one Demo leads? ;-)

Frum Helen Back: My Hubby’s in the Dog House

Frum Helen Back: I sneaked a peak at my husband’s ballot while he was voting. Even though I sent him the info on Sali, he voted for the guy and I know it is only because he’s republican. It doesn’t come as a surprise to me since he was a Nixon fan, but it really makes me wonder about people who vote the party instead of the issues. I really shouldn’t have looked at his ballot cause now I won’t like him all day.

DFO: I voted for 7 Republicans, 7 Democrats and 1 Independent. Can I officially say I’m an Independent?

Extra! Spring Creek Road Washed Out

You might want to let people know … I just watched a huge chunk of Spring Creek road collapse into Lightning Creek and that road is now closed. I know they were attempting some evacuations from that area, as spring creek is the only road in or out, but it wasn’t totally successful. Not sure yet what they’ll do with kids at school, either, except maybe have a campout.

Currently, it doesn’t appear that the bridge into Clark Fork is in any danger… it’s still a good 3 or 4 feet above water. But there’s an enormous amount of debris in the water, and I heard it said that if the island (farther upstream) goes, then most of that debris will be coming down and we may well lose the bridge. The bridge, of course, is our only access in and out of Clark Fork on the west side … if it goes, to get to Sandpoint we’ll have to go through Libby.

It’s quite the spectacle, and my camera is in my daughter’s car in Sandpoint. If I can get my paper done and uploaded to the printer, I’ll go borrow a camera and send you some pictures.

Trish Gannon/The River Journal

Update (from Trish): Just got an unconfirmed report that they lost the Heron Bridge (Heron,
Mont.)

APhoto of the Day — 11/7/06

Jamie Schumacker, left, and Danielle Honnette react as Ibrahim, a three year old dromedary camel turns toward them while having their picture taken Monday at Baylor University. The camel was on campus to promote an upcoming lecture. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/ Waco Tribune Herald, Jerry Larson)

Complete The Following Sentence …

It’ll make my day if …

Question: Fighting Mad

Issue: Political debate between co-workers turns violent; man arrested/Marc Stewart, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: A political debate at work had Duane Owens seeing red. So red, that the Spirit Lake man ended up in jail for allegedly threatening to stab a liberal co-worker last Friday. Owens, 40, was arrested and charged with aggravated assault. He could face up to five years in prison if convicted. “It’s crazy because I didn’t do anything,” the victim said Monday. “I am talking to him and he pulls out a knife. I am fearing for my life. I’ve already gotten threats. I am scared enough.”

Question: What would you say to the guy who allegedly pulled the knife?

Spen-sah: Please Grow Up, DFO

Spen-sah: Would it suprise anybody to know that the wife of Bud Mueller is a lifelong Democrat? And if he saved the County a few million per year by hiring a private ambulance service like many cities (including Spokane, I think, with American Medical Response), why do you think that makes him (Mueller) a “knuckle-dragging…uber-right”? With all due respect, please grow up.

DFO: Spen-sah; I’ll turn 57 in 13 days. With each passing year the prospect that I’ll ever grow up becomes more and more remote.

WorldNetDaily Poll: Why Are You Voting Today?

Question: Which issue is the one most driving your vote today?

1. Border security and immigration
2. Taxes and spending
3. Iraq war
4. Judicial appointments
5. National security
6. Marriage, morality and culture
7. Stem cells, cloning and abortion
8. Stopping do-nothing, overspending, non-border-securing Republicans
9. Stopping treasonous, high-taxing, welcome-illegals-with-open-arms Democrats
10. Other

DFO: No. 10, civic responsibility.

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

Wild Card — 11/6/06

Gotta call from a friend this morning who ranted about the charges and counter-charges being made by politicians — and ended by saying: Which batch of liars am I suppose to vote for? He was frustrated and confused by all the accusations being made. But he wanted to do his duty as an American citizen and vote. Such is the fallout from political warfare in the early days of the 21st century. Alas. Now, for your evening Wild Card …

Question: Should Saddam Hussein Swing?

Issue: Don’t Hang Saddam: Why the dictator shouldn’t get the death penalty/Christopher Hitchens, Slate

Question: Should Saddam Hussein be put to death?

HBO’s Best of the Local Blogs — 11/6/06

Izzit it just me, or does Bayview Herb seem to be enjoying himself in the company of Mommy Dearest/BrodH20. MD reports back that Herb’s potato salad at the Captain’s Wheel in Bayview is to die for here. Herb also has further comments about the sheriff’s deputy who allegedly had sex on duty after dropping by Bayview recently here.

*Family Phil has a new template for his blog, “A Family Runs Through It,” and a cute post re: some nagging that his son received here.

*Christine/Cinnamon Spice: “The President of the United States called today. Yep, you read right. 9 AM this morning, while we were having breakfast, the President called. He said the Democrats were ruining our country and that I MUST vote republican in the Election on Tuesday. And then I hung up on him.” Click here.

*Mari/Dogwalk Musings sez Magistrate Debra Heise suffered an extreme lapse of judgment when she brokered a plea bargain that allowed a 21-year-old brute to get away with a hate crime here. Cis is “mad as hell” about the decision, too, here.

*JBelle/The ‘Kan EWA has a list of election gripes that transcends party and includes her old grudge that Speaker of the House Tom Foley was unceremoniously dumped a few years back here.

*Marianne Love/Slight Detour takes distinct pleasure in introducing her mother to the artery-clogging eats at the Elmira Store here.

Meanwhile, Raymond Pert talks about preachin’ here, Bearable Bob’s countdown reaches one here, Sue posts another beautiful poem here, Katrina tries her hand at being a biker chick and a poet here, Nicholas wants help with a class assignment re: controversial advertising here, and CDADave had fun photoshopping veep Dick Cheney’s visit here.

Top Cutlines — 11/6/06

Genevieve Burke, right, winces as Janet Mendolera, an nurse volunteer, administers a flu shot at Mayfield High School in Mayfield Village, Ohio, Sunday. Nurse Chris Kramer stands by to help. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Plain Dealer, Lynn Ischay)

Top Cutlines

1. Republican poll watchers in Boise euthanize an elderly woman who was overheard on the way into her polling place that she was going to vote for Larry Grant — John Austin.

2. Genevieve, winces as she thinks about how nurses haven’t gotten any better with their shots, since her school day nurses — Cis.

3. Under the supervision of 1 Democrat and 1 Republican, a senior citizen receives her “instructions by injection” on the use of the new voting machines being used this year — keithincda.

HM: RSPA

For the rest of today’s cutlines, click here.

NIC’s Propst: Anything for a Good Cause

North Idaho College Vice President for College Relations Kent Propst, center, lets Nancy Edwards, left, and Candi Norris, right, shave his legs for a United Way fundraiser during the annual chili cook-off at NIC Friday. Of the several candidates offered for the leg shaving, Propst’s friends donated the most money in his name, for a total of $250. (Jesse Tinsley/SR Photo)

Question: What’s the silliest thing you’ve ever done as part of a fund-raiser?

Question: Did Judge Take Cavalier Attitude?

Issue: Plea deal ends high-profile battery case midstream: 21-year-old now faces only misdemeanor charges after dropping teen girl into campfire/Robert James, Hagadone News Network

More Info: “‘It was frustrating to be pulled into the room (to meet with Douglas),’” said Joe Fleck, the victim’s father. “‘It was frustrating to hear how strong these young ladies testified and then hear the judge saying how ‘boys will be boys.’” Fleck said he was told the judge indicated she had two boys of her own and felt that kids will be kids. He added his impression from the hearing was that if both sides did not agree to the plea deal, the judge would dismiss the case because she felt it was accidental.”

Question: Did the judge blow it?

John Austin: ‘Twas The Night Before The Election

‘Twas the night before the election
when all through the county,
while voters sought direction,
the pols sought their bounty.

Liberals were hung
by their platform with care,
In hopes that more democrats
soon would be there.

They nestled, they did,
all snug in their beds,
While visions of taxes
danced new in their heads.

Their mammas nearby,
they tried to relax.
Waiting to see,
what new could they tax?

When out on the lawn
there arose such a clatter,
A sign had been stolen,
but, oh, would it matter?

Away to the window
they flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters
and threw up the sash.


When, what to their wondering
eyes should appear,
But a group of scared people,
shedding Republicans’ tears.

They knew in an instant,
it was the far right.
For we live in Idaho,
not a liberal in sight.

From the top of the platform,
they heard the R’s call:
“Now dash away! Democrats!
Dash away all!”

“Down, Brady! Down, Grant!
the election needs fixin’
On, Otter! On Sali!
This ain’t Mason Dixon.

Butch Otter himself,
whilst he hid out of sight,
Said “Republicans save me!
Oh, please, Tuesday night!”

John Austin

APhoto of the Day — 11/6/06

Genevieve Burke, right, winces as Janet Mendolera, an nurse volunteer, administers a flu shot at Mayfield High School in Mayfield Village, Ohio, Sunday. Nurse Chris Kramer stands by to help. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Plain Dealer, Lynn Ischay)

Fisher: R’s, D’s Sling Mud w/Best of ‘Em

Complete editorial here

Most of the ads comprising personal assaults on candidates’ characters have come this year not from groups like the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, which slimed presidential candidate John Kerry two years ago. They have come from the country’s two major political parties. Candidates have often been able to take the high road in their campaigns, because their parties are more than willing to step in and do the dirty work. And dirty it has been, according to FactCheck.org. The nonpartisan watchdog of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania reports that both parties have become “attack-ad factories” during the current election season. The National Republican Campaign Committee has spent $41.9 million attacking Democrats, and $5 million supporting its own candidates. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has spend $18 million attacking Republicans, and $3.1 million supporting its candidates — Jim Fisher/Lewiston Tribune.

Question: Which political ad impressed you most this election season?

Idawa: Partisans Prefer Quantity Over Quality

Idawa: Watching the red staters argue on this blog that they will vote for Sali despite being the fact that he’s an idiot just to avoid demo control is almost as funny as watching the blue staters in WA blind support of Cantwell and ignore the fact that M. McGavick has been saying some intelligent things lately. I love partisan hackery at it’s finest. As an aside, I remember not too long ago that a good number on this blog were gloating about the death of the Democratic Party (after the last pres. election) but now quiver at the thought of big, bad scary Pelosi. Of course we’ll vote on Tuesday and regardless of the outcome, governmental types of all stripes won’t change one bit.

DFO: Well said.

WorldNetDaily Poll: How Will Election Turn Out?

Question: Predict the outcome of tomorrow’s mid-term election in Congress?

1. Democrats will take both houses of Congress with massive margins
2. Democrats will barely take both houses
3. Democrats will take House, but Republicans will hold Senate
4. Republicans will hold House, but Democrats will take Senate
5. The Senate will be a 50-50 split
6. Republicans will hold both houses of Congress
7. There will be many races disputed, plunging America into a 2000-style crisis
8. An unprecedented number of reports of voter fraud, voting-machine glitches, intimidation, etc.
9. No matter which party wins, the American people will lose with arrogant, unresponsive representatives
10. Other

DFO: No. 6

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

Wild Card/Sunday — 11/5/06

Two more days, HBOers, until we reach the Super Bowl of our political system — general election day 2006. You and I will help set a course for the region, state and nation with our votes. I will go to the polls as an informed voter. I have an edge because I’ve talked to almost everyone who’ll be on our general election ballot. Remember. At 8 a.m. Monday, I’ll be on Dick Haugen’s show discussing the SR endorsements. A full list of our endorsements will be in today’s newspaper — for Idaho and Washington. I’ll try to remember to post it here. Meanwhile, you can start your own threads with this Sunday Wild Card …

Sali: Media Distort Image of Liberal Larry Grant

Complete statement in Idaho Statesman here.

In this campaign, I have clearly and honestly stated my positions — both to the voters and to the press. These are common-sense positions found in the Republican platform — views that are shared by a majority of Idahoans. Helen Chenoweth-Hage and Butch Otter represented those principles before me and won election and re-election by wide margins. Unfortunately the Democrat media — including this paper — have neglected to report the facts about those positions. They have been too busy vilifying me and touting a distorted image of my opponent as a “moderate” or even a “fiscal conservative.” No surprise. An honest liberal can’t get elected in Idaho, and the liberal media knows it. Your newspaper’s endorsement of Larry Grant doesn’t surprise anybody either since he shares your liberal ideology — Bill Sali, Republican candidate for Congress.

Question: Does Bill Sali have a legit gripe?

Hedlund: A Rude Awakening re: Proposition 2

Hedlund: Boo to the CDA chamber for waking me up at 7:30 a.m. this morning with a recorded phone message to vote no on Prop 2. I think I’ll vote yes in protest of their inconsideration.

DFO I couldn’t believe the recorded message I received at supper time from my old buddy Phil Batt, urging a vote for local and state Republicans. I guess the state no-call list doesn’t apply to politicians. I’ve heard almost as many complaints about the recorded phone calls this year as I’ve heard about negative advertising. On the other hand, the chamber is right about Proposition 2. Hedlund, Prop 2 is such a bad initiative that it’s worth voting against despite your rude awakening.

Idaho Preps: Lake City 48, Coeur d’Alene 7

Complete story here

The first word that comes to mind is dominant. Lake City had no difficulties with Coeur d’Alene as the Timberwolves sprinted past the Vikings 48-7 on a rain-soaked field at LC. No. 1-ranked LC (10-0) will play host to defending state champ Meridian (7-3) next Friday. Meridian spanked Eagle 56-13. In the other openers, Highland topped Skyline 28-17 and Centennial handled Mountain View 27-6. Centennial will travel to the warm confines of Holt Arena in Pocatello next week — Greg Lee/Idaho Preps.

DFO: As I mentioned to an HBO commenter offline tonight, Lake City wins all the big games with Coeur d’Alene because it has the best coaching in the state. If the two teams are anywhere near equal in talent, LCHS will win. The only time CHS has won a big game was a coupla years ago when it had those two dominant running backs and nearly won the state title. Congrats to Van Troxel, his staff, and the talented T-Wolves. Now, onto state.

WorldNetDaily Poll: Pastor Haggard Scandal

Question: What do you think of charges that Rev. Ted Haggard had a 3-year ‘gay’ affair?

1. I’m standing by the pastor whose record, until now, has been unblemished
2. I want to give Haggard the benefit of the doubt until all the facts are in
3. Right now, it’s very difficult to believe his story - the male prostitute sounds more credible
4. It sounds like he’s made a mistake, but who hasn’t?
5. It’s a human tragedy and a betrayal of million of followers
6. I’m heartsick
7. His admission to buying crystal meth is a shocker
8. He’s your basic evangelical hypocrite, like Jim Bakker and Jimmy Swaggart
9. It sounds like he’s softening up the public for even worse revelations
10. Other

DFO: No. 3

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

Inside Huckleberries — 11/3/06

We’re ending the week with a bang, HBOers. National blogmistress Michelle Malkin just posted Jesse Tinsley’s photo of veep Dick Cheney signing that National Guard poster last night at the Empire Air hanger in CDA here.

*Dan of the County: “I’m going to have to revise my estimate of how many absentee ballots may get cast before election day from 8,500 to almost 10,000. As of yesterday we had about 9,200 cast with today and Monday to go.”

*Head count from the meet-the-veep fete: 2,700 inside; 200 left out in the cold.

*Huckleberries hears … that some people, including the veterans among the Empire Airlines staff, were hosed because the large flag (that served as a backdrop as VP Dick Cheney spoke) was dragged on the ground by those who put it in place, including White House staffers.

*Gotta call from a guy at the Poynter Institute who’s writing a story about the tempest in a teapot caused when gay activist Mike Rogers alleged that U.S. Sen. Larry Craig was gay 2 or 3 weeks ago. Don’t think I did a good job explaining to him how blogs and newspapers are different. I don’t like being interviewed for stories. Now, I know how you feel.

*The Coeur d’Alene Press had he second endorsement recommendations as the SR in legislative districts 4 & 5 here.

*I’m done with endorsement editorials for another general election year. I wonder if the time and effort is worth it. On the other hand, I know how to answer people who ask about certain races or propositions. I guess there’s something to be said about being an informed voter. I second guessed myself on the recommendation to the Editorial Board on only one race. But I’m not losing sleep over it.

*Greg Lee/Idaho Preps tells me that he’s banned his first commenter — some guy who didn’t know how to back off when Greg told him to do so. The first one’s always the hardest. But I enjoy the challenge of keeping everyone in play.

Top Cutlines — 11/3/06

At the Coeur d’Alene Airport Thursday night, Vice President Dick Cheney signs a poster featuring the National Guard unit that protested against John Kerry’s comments about troops in Iraq. You write the cutline. (Jesse Tinsley photo)

Top Cutlines

1. “Spelling mistakes? What spelling mistakes” — A Token D.

2. Curiously, former VP Dan Quayle, travelling with Dick Cheney, did not get the meaning of the picture, but laughed anyway. Meanwhile, when Mr. Cheney stole John Kerry’s joke for his party’s gain, it was a vice precedent — John Austin.

3. Signed: Dick Chaney — Cabbage Boy.

HM: CDADave

For all of today’s cutlines entries, click here.

Comment Posting Difficulties?

I’m still hearing that some of you are having trouble posting comments today. If you are, please do two things: copy down the URL address that you’re trying to post under (the address box up top) and send it to me. Also, forward any prospective comment to me via private e-mail and I’ll post it for you. I’ll send the URL address onto my blogmeisters who are trying to work the bugs out of a modified system that has blocked the huge run of spam that we had earlier in the week …

Top 5: What’s Best Thing About Fridays?

1. The weekend’s dead ahead.
2. I can sleep in tomorrow.
3. Prep football.
4. Almost all deadlines have been met.
5. Other?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 11/3/06

Two gulls dive for a french fry that Steve Wood of Wenatchee, Wash., tossed into the air at Walla Walla Point Park in Wenatchee, Wash. Wednesday. Wood spends his lunch time at the park once or twice a week and shares his meal with the birds. (AP Photo/The Wenatchee World, Kelly Gillin)

KTVB Poll: Brady leads Otter by 5%, Grant leads Sali by 4% here. Stapilus analysis here.

1. Breaking: David “Coon” Merritt, the Post Falls man who murdered 14-year-old runaway Carissa Benway in 2000, has died of natural causes while serving a life sentence in prison in Orofino here.

2. David Horsey/Seattle PI pens his feelings about Washington’s Initiative 933 (equivalent to Idaho’s Proposition 2) here.

3. Jeffrey Meldrum holds a Ph.D. in anatomical sciences and is a tenured professor of anatomy at Idaho State University. He is also one of the world’s foremost authorities on Bigfoot, the mythical smelly ape-man of the Northwest woods. And Meldrum firmly believes the lumbering, shaggy brute exists. But few others do here.

4. Eye On Boise: Three national groups have spent nearly a million dollars on independent campaigning in Idaho’s 1st District congressional race since Oct. 1 –- more than three times as much as the two major-party candidates combined reported spending during the same period here.

5. The mystery killer has been killed. Federal agents Thursday morning shot a 106-pound wolf believed to be responsible for 120 sheep kills in Garfield, McCone and Dawson counties here.

6. IMHO-NW: Tom Henderson/Lewiston Tribune (Are elk smarter than wolves?), Joan Opyr/New West (Idaho flirts w/political sea change), Frank McGovern/UI Argonaut (Ready for excitement?), Ed Symkus/Inlander (Review: “Borat”), and John Blanchette/Spokesman-Review (UW AD Turner disses Gonzaga).

Online Poll: A bare plurality of 36.2% of 1495 respondents to a Coeur d’Alene Press poll believe Republicans will keep control of Congress.

*SuperValu moves 400 Boise jobs to Minnesota here.

*Repub Bonner County (Idaho) commissioner endorses Democrat here.

*Current UI coach Dennis Erickson contacts former UI coach John L. Smith after Smith’s fired by Michigan State here.

*A twice-deported illegal immigrant with a history of drug arrests has been convicted in the traffic death of a Yakima Valley Community College educator here.

Orbusmax Special: Suspected speeder reaches for cocaine, not driver’s license here.

Pert: Lib Root Found in Liberty, Liberation, Libation

Full post examining Raymond Pert’s college classroom philosophy here

Do I promote Christianity? Marxism? Feminism? Capitalism? The Resurrection? The idea that all things are connected? Godlessness? Science? Evolution? No. It’s not my job to promote world views. It’s my job to help students investigate them, and, more important, investigate themselves and their world views. Many times this means helping students see that they have world views. Many don’t know that they have a world view. Many don’t realize that reality looks different to someone who sees life coming from death in the world over and against someone who sees reality only in terms of the senses — Raymond Pert/Kellogg Bloggin.

Question: What is the importance of a liberal arts education?

SR Edit: Don’t Vote for Mueller, Hess, Anderson

Complete editorial here

For months, this newspaper’s editorial board has endorsed dozens of candidates after weighing their qualifications for offices in Washington and Idaho. Today, we urge you not to vote for three men Tuesday. They are: ultraconservative Bud Mueller, a former Bonner County commissioner who is trying to reclaim that office; J.D. “Andy” Anderson, a constitutionalist and former Stevens County commissioner who is running for sheriff there; and Stan Hess, who is an erstwhile associate of former Ku Klux Klansman David Duke and running for the North Idaho College Board of Trustees — D.F. Oliveria/for Spokesman-Review Editorial Board.

DFO: The SR is going to run its complete list of Idaho endorsements on Sunday’s Editorial Page. You can get up to speed on the candidates by visiting Dan of the County’s “job application” site, which has links to many of the candidates who will appear on your election ballot here. Also, you can tune into KVNI-AM radio at 8 Monday morning to hear Dick Haugen and I discussing the SR’s endorsements.

DOTC: Did Local R’s Pay Veep Visit Expense

Dan of the County: Since I’m “off duty” I will share the same thoughts that many people have expressed—since this was a strictly enforced one-party political event (which is certainly fine if that’s what they choose to do rather than a broad-based community event), then hopefully that party pays all the expenses down to the overtime at the airport and Sheriff’s Office, etc.

DFO: Good observation, Dan. Anyone know if the local R’s picked up the tab for the veep’s political stop yesterday?

AM Hucks: Six Wonders of N. Idaho — And Thou

You may know that there’s a move afoot to update the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. But did you know that the Idaho Statesman has asked readers to help compile the Seven Wonders of Idaho? Not to be outdone, Huckleberries Online (HBO) asked readers to name their own wonders, figuring that the Statesman wouldn’t name anything north of Sun Valley. Lakes Coeur d’Alene, Pend Oreille and Priest topped HBO’s list. Contrary to Coeur d’Alene Chamber of Commerce promos, several said Priest Lake is the best of the North Idaho lakes in terms of beauty and water quality. Colleague Jim Hagengruber said Long Canyon, between Bonners Ferry and the Canadian border should top the seven-wonders list: “The alpine, upper portions are spectacular on their own, but the canyon depths are like no other place I’ve seen: redwood-sized cedars, a gin-clear creek and electric-green moss covering everything. In some places, the moss is ankle deep.” Other suggestions: The Palouse (as viewed from Steptoe or Kamiak Butte), Kibbie Dome, and the UI administration building (Family Phil Corless), Silver Valley Mining District (James Bond), Coeur d’Alene Resort Boardwalk (James Bond), the view from the top of Whitebird Grade (Gary Ingram), Idaho portion of Yellowstone National Park (Howard Martinson), and Sawtooths, Craters of the Moon and Ice Caves (OfCoffee). Also from OfCoffee, the HBO pseudonym of a local businessman who suggested a nominee that no one topped: “My wife.”

Wild Card — 11/2/06

I haven’t been too creative here today, HBOers. I’m sad — for my Opinion Page buddy, Gary Crooks, and his two young children, who now face life without their wonderful wife/mother, Laura. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers. Now, your Wild Card …

Cis: DFO, Why No Comment On Red Wine

Cis: DFO, how come you haven’t rang in here? You have comment before to tasting the grape. Do you do just red?

DFO: Indeed, you’re right, Cis; I enjoy wine. At a minimum, I drink a small glass before bed. At a maximum, I enjoy sipping a glass or two with family members and friends. I’ll drink an occasional beer on a particularly hot day during the summer. Haven’t had much taste for beer since my college days, B.C. I remember what an old Southern Baptist minister once told me about beer: “If I wanted a beer,” he said in his smooth southern drawl, “I’d go out into the corral (pronounced KOR-ral) and ketch it fresh.”

Story here

Top Cutlines — 11/2/06

A Boeing 737 pilot from Hungary’s Malev Airlines fixes his aircraft’s windshield wiper before take off in Budapest, Hungary, earlier today. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Bela Szandelszky)

Top Cutlines

1. The new LOF - “Light on Funding” - airline serving local fliers puts pilots’ time-management skills to the test. Here, Captain I.R. Bizzy washes the windshield while taxiing for position on a runway. Shortly after takeoff the captain will put the LOF craft on auto pilot and serve the in-flight meal. How does he manage? “Frequent breaks, and cheap liquor,” the captain told The Inquisitor — Brent Andrews.

2. Hey Bob, does this look like reindeer hair to you? — Whatever.

3. Moments later, after discovering his plane was Hungary for further attention, the pilot fell to his death trying to check the oil — John Austin.

HM: Cis

For all of today’s cutline entries, click here.

WSU Repubs Run Into Intolerance Over “Wall”

Tom Forbes/Palousitics provides full post by Kiley D. Smith, WSU College Repub prez here, WSU Evergreen story here.

It is with a high degree of disappointment and distrust that I write this letter regarding an increasingly violent wave of discrimination and close-mindedness against members of a political group at Washington State University. The WSU College Republicans has been working for several weeks to present a demonstration on illegal immigration to the WSU campus. It was designed to be tactful and reasonable presentation concerning the facts about uncontrolled immigration into the United States. Unfortunately, the WSU CR’s has been forced to reconsider their plans as a result of certain altercations with overzealous individuals in the WSU community. Ever since the CR’s plans were approved by WSU Campus Involvement, members of the College Republicans have been met with malicious comments, threats of destruction of private property, and physical assault on at least one occasion, by WSU students. The College Republicans have repeatedly been belittled and slandered by several faculty members and multicultural organizations, and have been accused of being racist despite our desire to make it clear that we are not anti Latino nor anti immigration, but anti illegal immigration. Regrettably, our group has been targeted with hate and violence even before having the chance to speak our views — Kiley D. Smith/WSU College Republicans president.

DFO: I’m amazed how conservative ideas aren’t tolerated on college campuses that pride themselves on being open-minded.

Trouble Posting Comments?

A few more regulars have contacted me to express problems in posting comments. I think I know what the problem is — has something to do with our efforts to block spammers. We might not be able to fix it today. If you wouldn’t mind, please send your comments to me via private e-mail and I’ll post them for you. Put “HBO comment” in the subject line and let me know where you want the post to go. Sorry for the inconvenience — dfo

Issue: Bus Driver Fired for Flipping Off Prez

Issue: Issaquah bus driver appeals firing for “flipping off” President Bush/Seattle PI

More Info: According to Issaquah School District officials, the incident happened when a district school bus stopped for the president’s motorcade while returning from a field trip in Seattle. As the president waved to the school children from his limousine, the bus driver made an obscene gesture, said Sara Niegowski, a spokeswoman for the district. Bush was in Seattle attending a fundraiser for Congressman Dave Reichert, who was riding in the same limousine.

Question: Was the punishment meted out by the school district appropriate?

Popkey: Canyon County Voters Key for Sali Win

Complete post here

If Bill Sali doesn’t hold one of the nation’s most solid GOP seats in Congress, it will be the voters of Canyon County, especially women, who fail him. It’s not a matter of Sali losing the Republican stronghold in the 1st District. Sali will carry Canyon County. But if he doesn’t win big, Democrat Larry Grant appears poised to win by eroding the GOP vote. I spent Tuesday and Wednesday talking to women voters in Nampa, Idaho’s No. 2 city. Based on those unscientific interviews and last week’s poll showing the race a dead heat, I think Sali’s got problems in Canyon, the GOP’s keystone county. Though Ada County delivers more total votes than Canyon, it’s split. Kootenai County is nearly as big as Canyon, but also is divided. Canyon provided the biggest majorities for GOP congressional candidates in every election since the party retook the district in 1994, ranging from a low of 56 percent in 1996 to 73 percent in 2004 — Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman.

Question: What percentage of the vote do you think Bill Sali and Larry Grant will get?

APhoto of the Day — 11/2/06

A Boeing 737 pilot from Hungary’s Malev Airlines fixes his aircraft’s windshield wiper before take off in Budapest, Hungary, earlier today. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Bela Szandelszky)

Didja Know This Is National Blog Posting Month?

Katrina/Notes on a Napkin begins a recent post by telling us that she won’t be participating in the National Novel Writing Month, which requires individuals to write a 50,000-word novel in November. But she’s up to National Blog Posting Month. Complete post here.

National Blog Posting Month, a spin-off of NaNoWriMo, was started by well-known blogger M. Kennedy, of Fussy-dot-org. It only has one rule: Update your blog every day for the month of November. That’s it. No minimum length. No content guidelines. You can write about your Aunt Josephine or the comparative merits of different pumpkin pie spices or the fact that you had broccoli for dinner. Write a full-length essay or a single sentence. It doesn’t matter. Just post. I think I might be up to that.

Question: How many of you bloggers post every day?

Issue: Lame Duck Commish Flies to East Coast Confab

Issue: Idaho commissioner’s trip questioned: Ousted Johnson at conference in Charleston, S.C./Erica Curless, Spokesman-review

More Info: With only two months left in office, Kootenai County Commission Chairman Gus Johnson is in Charleston, S.C., this week for a conference on using a new computer system that keeps the county’s property and tax records. Johnson and at least eight other county employees, mostly from the assessor’s office, are attending the Pro Val International User Group conference at a price tag of $1,800 per person for the weeklong educational seminar in the historic coastal city.

And More: Commissioner Rick Currie said it’s a justified trip, even if the chairman has only about 60 days left in office and likely won’t have any further dealings with the Pro Val software that generates assessment notices and tax bills, plus keeps records of who owns land in the county and its value.

Question: Do you agree with Commissioner Rick Currie that Johnson’s trip is justified?

WorldNetDaily Poll — Guardsmen & John Kerry


The Drudge Report

Issue: ‘We R Stuck Hear N Irak’: U.S. troops mock John Kerry for insulting their intelligence/WND; and Guardsmen ID’d in photo mocking Kerry: Army believes image of sharp-witted soldiers authentic/Associated Press

Question: How will the Kerry flap affect Tuesday’s election?

1. The GOP’s manipulation and Kerry’s angry rebuttal will inspire more Democrats to turn out and vote
2. It won’t hurt support for Democrats – voters can see this is just a desperate attempt by Republicans who are losing their shirts
3. Get a grip – Kerry’s not even running
4. Voters already know what Kerry is like – there’s nothing new here that gives them a reason to switch
5. It won’t affect it at all – this is just a tempest in a teapot
6. It might turn a few votes but this election is driven by more important issues
7. It will cancel out the Foley scandal and benefit Republicans
8. Disgusted Americans will crawl across broken glass for a chance to vote against Kerry’s party
9. Kerry’s given unmotivated Republicans a reason to vote – this could spell the end of the Democrat party as we know it
10. Other

DFO: No. 6 and mebbe No. 7

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

Wild Card — 11/1/06

You have no idea how hard Blogmeisters Ken and Ryan have worked to neutralize that porn spam attack yesterday and early this morning. It was so bad late yesterday afternoon that Ken had to take down the “current comments” feature to prevent you from seeing the burst of raunch. Please join me in giving them a cyber high-five. Now, for your Wild Card …

Question: Should Media Test School Security?

Since the Columbine high school massacre, any violent or potentially violent incident at or near a school draws media attention. Community members read, listen, and watch with interest the news accounts of the incidents. Because school security incidents are so newsworthy, some news media have begun conducting their own tests of security at schools in the area their medium serves. The question is: Should news media test school security? At its website Poynteronline, The Poynter Institute provides two different journalistic perspectives. The website links readers to the decision-making processes two different media outlets used. One outlet chose to test, the other chose not to test. Both sides are worth reading — Bill McCrory/Whitecaps.

Question: Do you think the media should check out security at local schools?

Top Cutlines — 11/1/06

Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire, right, and first gentleman Mike Gregoire greet children in Halloween costumes at the front door of the Executive Mansion Tuesday in Olympia, Wash. Gov. Gregoire plays the part of Charlotte A. Cavatica, the famous spider from the book, “Charlotte’s Web,” and Mike is dressed as Wilbur the Pig. Each child received a chocolate bar and a copy of “Charlotte’s Web.” (AP Photo)

Top Cutlines

1. Dino Rossi, broken financially after his Chris-crossed race for governor, dressed up as a hobo spider and showed up at the mansion he should be living in, mumbling something about “oh, the evil web you weaved…” — John Austin.

2. A Libertarian’s Nightmare: One politician with eight arms to reach into your pockets and another one pigging out at the public trough — Thom George.

3. Everything was just ducky until little Timmy kept insisting the First Gentleman was “a bunny! a stupid stupid PINK bunny!” which led to Mr. Gregoire motioning one of the WSP Trooper bodyguards to come over and pistolwhip little Timmy and zip tie his hands behind his back on the front lawn of the Executive Mansion — RSPA.

HM: Thomas Beasley

For all of today’s cutline entries, click here.

BrodH20: When You Run Outta Candy … Hide

Full post here

I had a huge bowl of candy and thought there would surely be some left at the end of the night. But we started running out before 7 p.m. The Otis blames me for giving every kid a couple handfuls. I searched my pantry for anything snacky. I found a few pre-packaged crispy rice treats and a couple packages of fruit snacks. And some individually wrapped fortune cookies. Before long I had to start pilfering from The Urchins’ candy stash. Fortunately they had dumped their bags after their first round of trick-or-treating. When I ran out at 7:30, I had no other choice than to be one of Those People. You know, the ones who turn off all their lights and hide and pretend nobody’s home. That didn’t stop one young teen from ringing the doorbell — Mommy Dearest/BrodH20.

Question: Mommy Dearest seems the exception to the rule on the Halloween front. She had more trick-or-treaters than should could handle at her home. But most who reported in last night said they had far fewer than expected. Any other news out there re: Halloween Just Past — from nos. of trick-or-treaters to possible vandalism?

Greg Lee Picks LCHS to Beat CHS, Win State Title

Complete list of season-ending Pickskin Picks, including Sandpoint, Timberlake games here

I said earlier in the year that the Timberwolves would win a state title and I’m sticking by that statement. Still, the Vikings are very capable of beating the T-Wolves. I just think LC is a smidge or two better. LC is not only the best team in the state, they’re the best team in the Inland Northwest and the eastern half of Washington. They’re arguably one of the top teams in the Pacific Northwest. And CdA isn’t too far behind. Former Lewiston head coach Nick Menegas, the Bengals’ offensive coordinator, thinks the game is essentially for the state title. I agree. I believe the winner will go on and win by decisive margins in the semifinals and state final. With this being a playoff game, I doubt there will be a lot of scoring. As it is, I doubt that the T-Wolves’ defense will allow much scoring. They haven’t so far. The first game between the teams was much closer than I expected. And it shouldn’t have been. The only reason it was close is because LC played poorly. Both teams will play well Friday. But LC will win it with defense. LC 23, CdA 13.

DFO: Greg has prep football stats and shares some thoughts about high school sports on his Idaho Preps blog here.

Sacred Cow Burgers: A Blast from the Past

In lieu of John Kerry’s statements about education and the military (and for old time’s sake, since we haven’t heard from Sacred Cow Burgers for awhile), Huckleberries is re-running this blast from SCB’s past.

Inside Huckleberries — 11/1/06

*Huckleberries hears … that Commissioner Gus Johnson lasted about two days in his home-away-from-home office in the county planning and building department. Staffers figured he’d last a week in Rand Wichman’s old office after he moved in. Courthouse insiders say heat generated by this blog and the SR edit page forced Gus to run for cover after announcing his loopy idea to work more closely with planners and builders.

*I’ve finished all but one of the SR endorsements for the Idaho races. All that’s left is a mini-edit, to urge voters to approve the constitutional amendment (SJR 107) to prevent the Legislature from tapping into the tobacco fund to balance the budget. I’m glad it’s almost over. I enjoy the endorsement process least about my opinion writing job.

Spirit Lake Singles Club Pick of the Week? Or …

… the latest group of scofflaws to make the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office warrants roundup? Featured above, Cassie Christine Stephens and Josh Eric Hogan. One is a forgerer. The other a burglar. Click here.

DanG: Sali Waffles? He’s A Politician, After All

DanG: Wow! Sali, a politician for the past 16 years, waffles! There’s a Pulitzer Prize story for you! Whatta scoop! Now let’s do a similar study and find out why the board of Micron was so hot cut loose Larry Grant.

DFO: DanG, DanG, DanG … sometimes I despair that I’m not getting through to you. There’s a significant difference here with Sali than your regular political waffler/liar. Sali provided a written position on this initiative to the Boise Weekly in July. Now, when he’s pretending to be undecided, the Yes-on-2ers are direct mailing voters, like Cis, a card that shows him at the top of the list of Prop 2 supporters. That’s stupid. Did he think the media wouldn’t check? BTW, as a Yes-on-2er yourself, aren’t you a little hosed that he’s trying to distance himself from your initiative?

Related: Don’t rush him: Sali is still wading through Prop 2/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune

Sausser: Why Doen’t You Require Real Names?

Don Sausser: I’m rather new to the blogs but wonder why folks don’t use their real names (as in editorials), especially when they ask for credibility from others???

DFO: Huckleberries Online has attracted many new readers this falls. So, it’s time to revisit this question. An online comments forum is very different than a letters to the editor page. It’s immediate. It’s interactive. And it can attract unwanted attention from blurkers (individuals who read but don’t post). Also, in this town, an individual posting under his/her real name can attract retribution from movers and shakers. The anonymity allows a free exchange of ideas that wouldn’t happen otherwise. Too many in this town are afraid to say what they think in public. BTW, I know the identities of almost everyone behind those pseudonyms. That helps keep things in check.

WorldNetDaily Poll: Kerry & Troops in Harm’s Way

Issue: Kerry suggests troops lazy, not bright: Tells students study hard or ‘get stuck in Iraq,’ senator slammed for ‘insult’/WorldNetDaily

Question: What do you think of John Kerry’s comments about education and Iraq?

1. He was right on the money in everything he said
2. He was talking about Bush, not the troops, so get over it
3. Kerry is demonstrating he’s the man for president in 2008
4. Kerry’s comments can only help the Democrats win control of Congress
5. Kerry lost it for the Democrats in 2004, and he just lost it again for them in ‘06
6. If I were a soldier, I’d be pretty upset
7. Whether or not he misspoke, he needs to apologize
8. Just like we all learned in 2004, Kerry is a traitor
9. It’s outrageous, I can’t believe this man wants to be a wartime president
10. Other

DFO: No. 6

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

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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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