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Archive for February 2008

Update: F-Words’ Sara Faces Surgery Tuesday

The bulk of the tumor is between the size of a tangerine and and orange (hailstones are measured by sports balls; tumors are apparently measured by fruit), and is taking up a large portion of Sara’s right frontal lobe. As of right now, that entire part of her brain is essentially nonfunctional; once the edema lets up, some of the area under pressure will come back online, relieving (they think) most of the short-term memory loss and focal difficulties*. Which means posting on the blog again. They’re going to remove about a third of her skull, overlay a copy of Monday’s MRI on her brain, and strip out everything that’s tumor/husband Andy, F-Words. More here

APhoto of the Day — 2/29/08

Butler Bulldog fan Jeanna Hillman paints Bulldog footprints on her stomach before the start of a college basketball game against Wright State in Indianapolis, Thursday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

Top Cutlines

1. In her final act of desperation and plea for male voter support, Hillary hires young Monica to recreate the infamous stained blue dress incident at her last campaign rally! — Damn Yankee.

2. Obviously not in the Wright State of mind, Jeanna can’t stomach the game, telling her parents the Butler did it — John Austin.

3. After the game, Jeanna was immediately offered several exciting positions, including Intel spokeswoman, professional cheerleader, and fraternity house tub toy — Brent Andrews.

HM: ThomG

Parents Council: Sleepless In INorthwest

Is anyone getting enough (sleep)? Not if you’re the parent of young children, it seems. I have a friend who has a teething 10-month-old. She’s not sleeping much these days. Neither is another friend, whose 4-year-old daughter wakes up at night wanting to crawl into bed with her mom and dad. At my house, I have become “a reluctant co-sleeper,” a term that cropped up in a New York Times article last year about the family bed. I didn’t listen to some of my friends who advised against sleeping together. It was so convenient when they were little, but now that they’re 4 and 1 ½, my husband and I are running out of room in our queen-size bed/Virginia de Leon, Parents Council. More here

Question: Are you getting enough sleep? Any advice on how to get children to sleep through the night?

Currie Announces For Re-election

Rick Currie, chairman of the Kootenai County Board of Commissioners announced his candidacy for re-election this afternoon at the courthouse, stating: “As you know, I am not the best public speaker in the world! But just let me assure you, that has nothing to do with how well I do my job!” He then clicked off a list of accomplishments in which he’s been involved, including: increasing the foregone tax balance tenfold; paying off the administration building 5 years early; instituting townhall meetings; and maintaining an open-door policy. Also, he said: “I have refused to be manipulated by special interests or individuals with a personal agenda.”

Question: Did Currie hurt or help himself by admitting up front that he’s “not the best public speaker in the world”?

DFO Animal’s: Longest Horse Tail

Crystal Socha, 26, of Augusta, Kan., combs the tail of her American Paint horse, Summer, during the 11th annual EquiFest of Kansas at the Kansas Coliseum in Wichita today. EEleven-year-old Summer holds the Guinness Book of World Records title for the longest tail on a horse, at 12 feet, six inches. (AP Photo/The Wichita Eagle, Mike Hutmacher)

Fortier: Scarring Kids For Life w/Weird Names

Hey soon-to-be parents: Naming your kids is not a “clever competition.” Remember when naming your newborn was a tribute to an elder family member? Not anymore. Now it seems that names are chosen in an effort to win some sort of wacky competition. For example: Earlier this month, the newspaper listed seven births from three area hospitals. Of the seven babies, only two — Olivia and Avery — were tagged with names that humans tend to use. The others? Well, there was a Brooklyn, an Ambria, a Koston, an Aidan Zorion, and the award winner on that fateful day: Entering the world at 7 pounds, 1 ounce … Red Star Don Knows His Gun-Holmes. Forget saving for college; start the therapy fund now/Marty Fortier, Coeur d’Alene Press. More here

Question: Does anyone have a weird name in your family or circle of friends?

Out on the Town: Your Mother Should Know

In a tux and tails, spit-shined shoes and a periwinkle vest, our youngest son sung for the first time last night in front of an audience. He graced the school gym filled with parents, grandparents, teachers and his schoolmates with a rendition of “Your Mother Should Know” by the Beatles. Naturally, I thought it was a wonderful performance. But I didn’t realize just how wonderful I found it until I was tucking him into sleep/Jill Wagner, Out on the Town. More here

SR Blog roundup:
*Shouting fire on a crowded Web site/Thuy Nguyem, Daily Briefing
*Y2Y bill is dead, along with Spokane hopes of becoming capital/Rich Roesler, Eye On Olympia
*I wanna dip my strawberries in it/Tom Bowers, Taste of the Town
*Church’s sermon on hip-hop stereotypes/Isamu Jordan, Sound Wave
*More than 1500 readers request tax forms/Gary Graham, News Diary

HBO @ Noon: Obama Doesn’t Read Blogs

“The senator shook a few print reporters’ hands -– told a few bloggers he doesn’t read blogs –- and then headed to the back of the plane -– a part he dubbed “the fun part of the plane” -– where the photographers sit”/ABC News. More here

CCD: Okay everyone, let’s all get in line to call Obama another old generation, out-of-touch, unhip has-been who will never understand today’s world. You know, remember what happened when Jim Risch said that awhile back? Come one everyone, let’s pile it on!

Question: Does it matter to you whether or not a politician reads blog and/or is cyber savvy?

NIC Prez Priscilla’s New Mug Shot

I just saw this new “mug shot” of North Idaho College President Priscilla Bell (right) in the SR photo folder. The previous one is on the left. Which do you like better?

AM Headlines — 2/29/08

Sweet & Sour Herb/Bay Views sends along another photo of Baywinkle, the itinerant moose that’s been roaming Bayview since December. Here, Baywinkle is shown in Sheryl Puckett’s yard, getting acquainted with a four-legged neighbor. See: Moose encounters on the rise/SR

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, Spokesman-Review

*Suspect faces male rape charge/Marc Stewart, Coeur d’Alene Press — The alleged perpetrator is not being held on bond! Amazing.

*Better late than never: More than two months later, $600K Powerball winner claims prize/Brian Walker, Coeur d’Alene Press — I’m glad it’s a local woman.

*New grocery tax bill introduced/Betsy Russell, SR Eye On Boise — As Larry The Cable Guy would say, get ‘er done. Completely.

*Trestle Creek marina plan on Lake Pend Oreille is being changed/Keith Kinnaird, Bonner County Daily Bee — Continue to stay tuned.

*Proposed Western eco-region with Spokane as U.S. capital dies/Rich Roesler, SR Eye On Olympia — Some people have too much time on their hands.

Online Poll: Wolf Hunting

With gray wolves in the region set to be removed from Endangered Species Act protections, when you think wolf hunting will be allowed?/Lewiston Tribune

*This year.
*Within two years.
*Within five to 10 years.
*It won’t happen.

Question: Leap Year

Item: Happy birthday, Leap Year babies/Lewiston Tribune

More Info: Jessica Broemmeling didn’t know anyone else born on Feb. 29 until she went to work as a secretary at the Clarkston Fire Department and discovered Chief Steve Cooper’s dad was a leap year baby. Bud Cooper, who was born in 1924, is officially 21 today. “I guess I should get drunk,” jokes the longtime Lewiston Orchards resident. “I wish I was turning 21 and knew what I know now.”

Question: Does Leap Year mean anything to you?

Cd’A, PF Mayors Discuss Education Corridor

Item: Corridor project divides mayors: Bloem says situation ideal, Larkin concerned about economic impact on county/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: She said the only place to grow is on the DeArmond Mill site next to the college and that the chance to purchase the property is a “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity that will be gone if they don’t act on it. “That does not diminish our emphasis or commitment to workforce training or the workforce training center, which we are not selling,” Bell said.

Question: Should an education corridor adjacent to North Idaho College be a priority project for Coeur d’Alene leaders?

Note To Self: Sometimes Jail Is Only Alternative

I’m not a cop. I was a prosecutor for several years but I was also a public defender early in my career. I no longer practice criminal law but I am sympathetic to the institutions that are charged with “protecting” the public. It’s thankless and there are no easy solutions. I watched people get chance after chance after chance. Nobody I knew was quick to throw simple drug users into jail. At some point, however, you run out of options. I wish we could figure out some alternatives, but we haven’t yet/Note To Self.

WND Poll: Crispy Frickin’ Chicken?

Item: ‘Crispy Frickin’ Chicken’ ad blasted for ‘fornication’: Family calls slogan offensive, euphemism for other F-word/WorldNetDaily

Question: What do you think of the Crispy Frickin’ Chicken ad campaign?

1. I love it, it’s finger-lickin’ good!
2. It’s a cute play on words, totally acceptable
3. Frickin’ is a colloquial derivation of freaking, not anything obscene
4. It’s over the top, as frickin’ comes from freaking, which comes from the famous F-word
5. It’s not as offensive as Carl’s Jr.’s ad campaign with Paris Hilton washing cars
6. What do you expect when Sports Illustrated swimsuit babes are on the checkout counters?
7. I don’t like it, but last I checked we have the First Amendment
8. If you don’t like it, just don’t eat their chicken
9. Fast-food joints appealing to young demographics will continue with this obscene style
10. It’s obscene, plain and simple

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here

Wild Card/Thursday — 2/28/08

I’m still chuckling about John Austin’s response to the question earlier today: Did you finish college in 4 years?” His response? “It only took me two terms to complete college — Jerry Ford’s and Jimmy Carter’s.” I read the main thread of the comments section for the same reason that you do — for chuckles as well as insight. I’m also looking for trolls. Otherwise, I’m as eager to see what you guys come up with as your average blurker. It’s closing time. So, I’ll play this Wild Card and get outtahere …

For Those Keeping Score @ Home …

… Commissioner Rick Currie will announce his candidacy for re-election at 1 p.m. Friday at the Rankin vets memorial plaza on Kootenai County Courthouse grounds. Ex-Cd’A police chief Tom Cronin has already announced for the post.

State Tourney: Viks Win Opener, Semis Friday

Nate Clinton deferred Thursday afternoon. When defending state champ Madison slapped a box-and-one on the 5-foot-7 senior guard, Clinton didn’t get frustrated. That opened the door for a teammate to step up, and sophomore Devon Austin more than obliged. Austin came off the bench to score a game-high 17 points as the No. 1-ranked Vikings fended off the Bobcats 52-44 in a State 5A boys basketball tournament opener at the Idaho Center. CdA (21-2) will take on District III champ Eagle (19-5) tonight in the first of two semifinal games. Tipoff is at 5:15 PST/Greg Lee, SR Sportslink. More here

Greg Lee’s Sportslink State Tourney Notebook

Friends Blogs: Vive La Difference — 2/28/08

Photo: The Stupid Shall Be Punished

“My keyring has about 8 keys and one of my dogtags; very minimalist and functional,” posts Bubblehead/The Stupid Shall Be Punished. “Here’s what my wife’s keyring looks like. How many actual keys do you see amongst the extraneous stuff on the ring?”

Top 10 Signs Of Spring
10. The geraniums in the greenhouse are ready to be repotted.
9. By the looks of these leaves they are about ready to be propagated for new spring plants
8. The sun is coming up earlier and we can view the sunrise on a clear morning.
7. Everywhere we look we find dog and cat hair
6.Two words: Seed catalogues.
5. The strong smell of dead skunk is in the air as you travel to town.
4. The car barely missed a deer as they are getting more active in the evening.
Inland Empire Girl provides final 3 here

HBO Numbers (for Wednesday, Feb. 27): 9865 page-views/5469 unique views

*Twaddle Turns 1/Marmitetoasty
**I hate money/Synaptic Disunion
*The heat was hot/TUBOB
*A lesson in cognitive dissonance/Fort Boise
*Church marquees around Franklin, Tenn./Chronic Discontent
*Canine road rage/Atmospheric Ruminations
*Do you like apples?/PDX Pup

Hoffman: Otter Still Wrong re: Early Education

In 1975, the Idaho Legislature established public kindergarten. Actively campaigning against the idea was one state Rep. C. L. “Butch” Otter. He worked both the House and Senate education committees, arguing that state-funded kindergarten would cut into established private kindergarten business and that there was no proven need for kids to go to school at a younger age. … Otter recently told one early childhood education advocate that 30 years ago, the “experts” told him kindergarten was going to help raise kids out of poverty and solve various social ills, and now the same arguments are being made for pre-K. But arguing about K vs. pre-K misses the point. The point is that the supple little brains of toddlers and preschoolers need to be nurtured, and Idaho, researchers argue, does not do a good job making sure that happens/Nathaniel Hoffman, Boise Weekly. More here

Question: Do you support public funding for pre-kindergarten education?

Test Your Trademark Recognition Skills …

… with the CramerSweeney Smart Marketing IQ Test e-mailed to HBO by CougCat here.

DFO: I only nailed 11 of 20

Eye On Boise: Idaho To Underwrite Timber $$$

Idaho would make up part of the loss to timber-dependent school districts if Congress fails to reauthorize Craig-Wyden funds for the next four years, under legislation that just passed the House on a 55-12 vote and now moves to the Senate. … The bill, HB 532, would dip into the public school stabilization fund to make up 70 percent ($4.3 million) of the lost Craig-Wyden funds next year if Congress doesn’t ante up; 55 percent the following year; 40 percent the year after that; and 25 percent the year after that. Then, the state replacement funds would stop/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here

Eye On Boise roundup
*Governor’s scholarship plan trimmed back
*Stream channel program saved — for now
*Ways & Means holds first meeting
*Mel Richardson to retire
*‘Mind if I hug you?’

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 2/28/08

Pebbles Van Der Poel, an Amaltheia Dairy worker, helps some of young kids find the nipple on a bucket of milk during feeding time at the dairy in Belgrade, Mont. The goat farm and dairy hopes to sell 100,000 pounds of cheese this year. Story here (AP Photo/The Daily Chronicle, Erik Petersen)

1. A hole about 2 to 3 inches in diameter, punched in an exterior wall of an elementary school in Libby, Mont., during snow removal, has U.S. Sen. Max Baucus saying “heads should roll” at the Environmental Protection Agency here/Missoulian.

2. The Metropolitan Airports Commission has spent more than $28,000 prosecuting Idaho Sen. Larry Craig and fighting his appeal here/KTVB.

3. A Centennial High School football player is suing the University of Hawaii for allegedly revoking his scholarship offer after coach June Jones’ resignation here/Idaho Statesman

4. Blogosphere: The cost of sprawl/Idaho Conservation League; Huckabee Washington primary followup/Palousitics; Idaho’s unimportant middle class/Adam’s Blog; Otter’s one-size-fits-all approach to vehicle license fees/Kevin Richert; and Representing Sara/Red State Rebels.

5. IMHO: Northern Illinois tragedy strikes close to home/Ginny McConnell, Moscow-Pullman Daily News; That nun’s packing a crucifix/Tom Henderson, Lewiston Tribune; This race has too many laps/Doug Clark, SR; and Juries should know some accused pedophiles’ pasts/SR.

6. News Roundup: Alton’s worker stabbed in argument with smokers/KREM2; Idaho Legislature: Pre-K, guns abortion/; Support grows for kids’ two-pole rule/Lewiston Tribune; Boise State guarantees students can finish in 4 years/KTVB; and St. Vinny’s pantry closes Friday/KREM2.

Orbusmax Special: 4 teens charged in rape that was discussed on here.

In The News: Nader-Gonzalez For Independent Prez

Independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader, accompanied by Matt Gonzalez, right, announces his selection of Gonzalez, a former member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, to be his running mate Thursday, during a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington. (AP Photo/Lawrence Jackson)

DFO: Ya know, I might just vote for old Ralph this time. I’m unenthusiastic about either of the current major party frontrunners. And Ralph has probably served me better over the course of my adult life than any national politician. I owe him one.

AM Headlines: Spirit Lake’s Boomin’ — 2/28/08

Kathy Plonka/Spokesman-Review

Dozer waited ouside Spirit Lake Video for his owner Mike Davis of Blanchard on Thursday, February 21, 2008 afternoon. Spirit Lake is experiencing a business renaissance with several new shops and restaurants opening over the past few months. Prairie Voice story/SR Prairie Voice.

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, Spokesman-Review

*Athol man fills rural medical needs: Physician assistant has 500 patients/Taryn Hecker, Spokesman-Review — Athol now has one medical provider to go with its one stoplight? Cool.

*Local manufacturer likely to get Post Falls City Hall bid/Amy Cannata, SR Prairie Voice — Nothing wrong with shopping locally for something like this, as long as the low bid truly has problems.

*500 million down the toilet? Study: Wastewater needs could reach half a billion over the next 50 years/Brian Walker, Coeur d’Alene Press — $500M for wastewater treatment here, $55-75M for an expanded jail there. Pretty soon you’ll be talking about big money.

*Workforce housing set to land: Development would be located in The Landings/Lucy Dukes, Coeur d’Alene Press — Any NIMBY group protesting this one, yet?

*Signatures pending on bypass agreement: State paying $6.4 million for railroad right of way/Keith Kinnaird, Bonner County Daily Bee — I’ll exhale when they finally break ground.

Question: When did you last stop in Spirit Lake to buy something or simply look around?

Sheriff Rocky: Jail In Crisis

Item: Sheriff’s Dept: Jail in crisis: Project could cost between $55-$75 million; voters to decide in November/Marc Stewart, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: “We’re in a crisis,” Jail Commander Travis Chaney said Wednesday. “Certainly this issue isn’t going to go away. We can’t bury it. We can’t wish it away. We have to come to grips with the fact that our county is growing and with the good people come the predators. The longer we wait, the more costly this is going to be in the long run.”

Question: Will you support a jail expansion if the local-option sales tax (which comes with property tax relief) pays for it?

Parent Wants Sex Book Out Of Library

Item: Parent tries to remove sex book from library again/Idaho Statesman

More Info: A Nampa parent who unsuccessfully advocated removing two sexually explicit books from the Nampa Public Library two years ago is trying again. Randy Jackson said he will take his appeal to remove “The New Joy of Sex” and “The Joy of Gay Sex” to the Nampa Library Board next month.

Question: Should sex books be removed from a public library?

Online Poll: Did Clemens Lie?

Two weeks ago, Major League Baseball pitcher Roger Clemens denied using steriods. On Wednesday, a Congressional committee asked the Justice Department to investigate Clemens for perjury. Do you think Clemens lied?/Idaho Statesman.

*Don’t care

Zelda: Silly Season Making Me Crazy

Oooo - my head hurts. The NY Times is running an article about some people questioning whether McCain is eligible to be president because he was born in the Canal Zone. Didn’t realize this had been a topic of Internet buzz. So what’s Limbaugh gonna do with this one? Re-attack the NY Times & appear to take McCain’s side when he just came out today to lambaste McCain over the “Hussein” middle-name/Cincinnati talk-radio incident? And does make the NY Times look silly for rummaging through the political attic like this?/Zelda.

Eye Opener: Planned Parenthood Sorry For ‘Serious Mistake’

Item: Response to caller ‘a serious mistake,’ says Planned Parenthood of Idaho: They also criticized The Advocate for trying to doscredit employees with recorded phone calls/Sandra Forester, Idaho Statesman

More Info: “A fundraising employee violated the organization’s principles and practices when she appeared to be willing to accept a racially motivated donation,” said CEO Rebecca Poedy in a written statement. “We apologize for the manner in which this offensive call was handled. We take full responsibility for the actions of the fund-raising staff member who created the impression that racism of any form would be tolerated at Planned Parenthood …”

Question: Are you satisfied with the explanation and actions taken by Planned Parenthood. Or do you believe the staffer who handled the phone call should be fired, too?

Parting Shot — 2/27/08

With General Counsel Marc Kesselman looking on from behind, Agriculture Undersecretary Mark Rey talks to reporters after being found not in contempt of court, in front of the Missoula Federal Courthouse today in Missoula. Story here (AP Photo/James Snook)

Mount Spokane Vet Wins Powerball $1M

Item: Iraq vet wins $1 million in Lottery scratch-off: 26-year-old Guardsman bought ticket at Mead Zip Trip/Jody Lawrence-Turner

More Info: Leyde came into his fortune Tuesday night after scratching off one of four tickets he bought at a Zip Trip in Mead. About 10:30 p.m., he scraped away the gray metallic cover on his Millionaire II ticket revealing the winning numbers and ran downstairs to tell his parents. The former active-duty soldier says that as he tried to sleep Tuesday night, he thought of 50 people he should give money to and about 10,000 ways to spend it.

Question: What would you do with a million bucks? And/or: Can you think of anyone more deserving than a vet who has served two tours of duty in Iraq?

HBO’s Best of the Local Blogs — 2/27/08

Cis Gors e-mails this shot of hubby, Ken, and their doxy, Misty, after being inspired by the dachsund photos HBO has run this week of the dachsund rescuers in Spokane.

Even as an adult I can remember going to watch the parade from the circus trucks or trains to the arenas. The excitement I felt one time when we had seats in the very front row and the clowns would tease us and the animal trainer would let us give a loaf of bread to an elephant. I was a kid all over again. Ah, what memories. Those were the “good old days”. Too bad the local kids won’t be so fortunate. Carson and Barnes , a travelling circus that has been around for 70 years wanted to bring their show to Hayden. Claiming to be “G” rated - no gambling nor booze wasn’t good enough for Hayden’s city fathers. Nor was the promise to clean up it’s own garbage and pay for it’s own electricity and water/Dogwalk Musings. More here

HBO Numbers (for Tuesday, Feb. 26): 9205 page-views/5469 unique views

*Walking around w/pneumonia/MamaJD
*So much for my place of tranquility/Otis G Experience
*A few of my favorite sayings/Far Corner
*Ralph Nader, hmm?/Bay Views
*A shark in the bathroom sink/A Butterfly Moment
*The Bill Cunningham embarrassment/Arch Druid
*Memories/From A Simple Mind
*Danger/Un-Muted Mumblings
*Half century mark/Mrs. Mac Energetic

Question: Did you enjoy the circus as a kid?

Oregon Town Recalls Mayor Caught In Underwear

Arlington Mayor Carmen Kontur-Gronquist listens to public comments during a city council meeting at the Arlington Municipal Building in Arlington, Ore., (along Columbia Gorge) in this Jan. 9 file photo. Kontur-Gronquist , who once stripped to her underwear and posed on a fire truck has been stripped of her office. Kontur-Gronquist said the pictures of her in black bra and panties were taken for use in a contest about fitness, but a relative posted them on MySpace in hopes it would improve the social life of the single mother. They predated her election, but she said she saw no reason to take them off the popular Web site once elected three years ago. Later, she closed access to them. Now, she’s been recalled 142 votes to 139. Story and controversial photo. (AP/East Oregonian, E.J. Harris)

Question: Did Arlington, Ore., vote correctly in recalling Mayor Carmen Kontur-Gronquist?

Inside Huckleberries — 2/27/08

*This Saturday the Handle Extra will expand into Sandpoint and Bonner County communities. It will be inserted into home-delivered newspapers purchased by subscribers and should be available in single-copy issues at stores and in honor boxes. Starting April 12 an additional 4,000 or so copies of the Handle Extra will be given away for free on newsracks throughout Bonner and Kootenai counties.

*Otis G e-mails to say that he’s bummed because people are dumping bodies at his place of tranquility in Montana here.

*A Berry Picker points out that the steering committee for David Rawls’ House District 3 bid against state Rep. Phil Hart reads like a who’s who of red Kootenai County here

Eye On Boise — No Irony Here

The state Board of Education has sent out its schedule for meetings this week, and it includes “open government training” this Wednesday at 3:30 p.m., followed immediately by – you guessed it – a closed-door, executive session at 5 p.m./Betsy Russell, SR Eye On Boise.

Eye On Boise: Hammond Leads Vo-Tech Charge

It took three motions, but JFAC this morning agreed on a budget for professional-technical education next year that’s just below the governor’s recommendation. Sen. Jim Hammond, R-Post Falls, and Rep. Janice McGeachin, R-Idaho Falls, led a move to add back in $753,400 to upgrade instructional equipment at the six technical colleges across the state, which are BSU, CSI, NIC, EITC, ISU and LCSC. The idea is to make sure training in professional-technical programs is “industry relevant” and equips graduates to compete for jobs. Hammond called the move “essential to our economy. … We need this to retain our employers, we need this to make our companies grow, we need this to help us crawl out of this recession”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here

Eye On Boise roundup: JFAC delays public-school budget setting; Committee barely passes revised iSTARS; and lobbyists back Ysursa lobbying bill.

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 2/27/08

Montana Special Olympics competitor Leland Wight, left, falls in the arms of Mary Voelz at the finish line of the 400-meter snowshoe race during the Montana Special Olympics at Whitefish Mountain Resort Tuesday in Whitefish Mont. About 350 contestants from around the state competed in the three day event on the Big Mountain which started Sunday. (AP Photo/The Daily Inter Lake, Garrett Cheen)

Spotlight: Idaho news roundup

1. Top Spokane: Wayne Leyde, a 26-year-old Iraq War vet, says he stopped by a convenience store Tuesday night and bought scratch game tickets on his way home from the gym. He checked the tickets before he went to bed and then discovered he was a millionaire here/KREM2.

2. Top Idaho: Idaho universities and colleges will keep their authority to regulate firearms on campus under a new bill headed to the Senate floor here/KTVB.

3. Top It’s too soon to remove gray wolves from the Endangered Species List, says a coalition of environmental and animal rights groups that has announced its intention to sue the federal government over the matter here/SR.

4. Blogosphere: Stress-free jobs/Slight Detour; The childless life/A Family Runs Through It; Risch’s finances/IdaBlue; Door-to-door meat salesman/Fort Boise; and Road funding: Debate finally begins/Kevin Richert.

5. IMHO: Idaho chains kids to bleachers in race of life/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune; Fishing for a (winter) break/Kaisie Brede/St. Maries Gazette Record; Dropping private prison shows common sense/Idaho Statesman; Require mobile home parks to hook up to sewer/Spokesman-Review; and Nader campaign wreaks havoc on election/Paul Dec, WSU Evergreen.

6. News Roundup: Blogger levels heated threat against Sierra Clubbers/Missoulian; WAC basketball coaches not happy with ESPN contract/Idaho Statesman; US Senate candidate sues Idaho over elk kill/Idaho Statesman; Florida woman killed in Idaho snowmobile crash/KTVB; and Snow groomer finally pulled out of lake/KTVB.

Orbusmax Special: Trailblazer Greg Oden’s endorsement of Obama lights up blogosphere here.

F-Words: Update On Sara’s Condition

We’re going in for a pre-surgical consultation at 12:15 today. We’re not likely to find out much new, other than what a really impressive surgeon thinks. We’ve been seeing a lot of friends recently. The night after the diagnosis, we had a couple of our closest friends over to drink wine; the day after that, we visited Sara’s grandmother. And on this Monday, we had all of our oldest friends (and some family) over for crepes. I didn’t cook, but as soon as I get the recipes nailed down, I’ll put them up on the web. The fact that we’re seeing a surgeon, and the fact that the tumor isn’t abutting Sara’s optic nerve or motor strip, means that it may be operable without doing serious damage to the person I love. I hope so/Andy Anderson, F-Words. More here

$Rathdrum 600,000 Powerball Ticket Unclamed

State lottery officials are wondering why they haven’t heard from the winner of a $600,000 winning ticket sold at Super 1 in Rathdrum nearly seven weeks ago. State lottery official David Workman finds it “unusual” they haven’t heard from someone by now. Story here

HBO’s AM Headlines — 2/27/08

Hauser Thoughts Photo

“Betsy, Glen Meyer’s dog, found a new playmate Thursday,” posts Frum Helen Back/Hauser Thoughts. Moose continue to be troublesome in North Idaho. KREM2 reports that a motorist hit and killed one north of Rathdrum here. And Rathdrum police had their hands full with another one here.

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, Spokesman-Review

*S-R wins national award for “Our Kids” series/Meghann M. Cuniff, Spokesman-Review — Congrats to Editor Steve Smith & Co. Yeah, I know I’m blowing the newspaper’s horn. But this is very cool.

*Chesrown speaks out on education corridor: Tells NIC Booster Club he will immediately turn over mill land once it is purchased/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d’Alene Press — Anti-LCDC noggins are poppin’ all over the community.

*Neighbors seek clemency for Alder Creek poacher/Ralph Bartholdt, St. Maries Gazette-Record —

*United Way tops $500K: Duane Hagadone will now match every dollar that is donated/Sean Garmire, Coeur d’Alene Press — The devil deserves his due on this one.

*Man imprisoned for shooting incident: Peterson fired as many as 60 shots at neighbor’s home/Keith Kinnaird, Bonner County Daily Bee — And you thought you had a bad neighbor.

Nader: Turd In Campaign Punch Bowl

In only 36 short weeks (longer than it takes some folks to gestate a whole baby), we’ll be electing a new president. Or, perhaps the Supreme Court will. Depends on what kind of mood Dick Cheney is in that day. I’m guessing grumpy. When you stop to think about it, we’ve had some (jerk) from only two families in the White House for the last 20 years. And there’s a good chance that streak could stretch to 24. Personally, I think either Hillary or Obama would do a much better job at running the country than the current Corrupter-In-Chief, who has all the political acumen and presidential respectability of Barney Fife with a snootful of meth. As we all know, this election is the Democrats’ to lose. Which they, as a party, are plenty capable of doing/Bob Wire, New West. More here

Question: Do you think the 2008 presidential election is he Democrats to lose?

JeanieSpokane: Spokane Cops Relive Wild West

As a background, I have a lot of friends, good friends, who are police officers. Unfortunately, they are getting older and slowly retiring. Which leaves what I call the “upstarts.” I think police officers are really crossing the line in thinking that what’s legal for them is not legal for us. Olsen was himself drinking. That gun of his should not even been near him. Just because he’s a police officer, doesn’t make him a judge. He acted irresponsively and, well, ILLEGALLY. And, news flash, this isn’t the Old West anymore/JeanieSpokane.

TUBOB Visits Sgt. Christie’s Woodville

One bright sunny day on the schoolyard Officer Billy Goat came upon the funniest thing! There was Jimmy the Skunk overdosing on some really bad China White heroin and he couldn’t even talk. Officer Billy Goat waved over all the kids from Mrs. Cornpone’s Third Grade Class to come see.

“Hey kids, this is why we don’t slam buttloads of bad smack on playgrounds! Officer Billy Goat said while kicking Jimmy the Skunk in the ribs with the steel toe of his shiny boots. “Look! Even when I kick Jimmy he doesn’t wake up.” Officer Billy said chuckling.


Full post Sgt. Christie’s real life characters

Wild Card/Tuesday — 2/26/08

It didn’t slip past me today that two HBOers played key roles in two important community events this week. Dan of the County refereed that bitter community fight in Huetter. And Councilman MikeK was one of three votes on the city Public Works Committee against a proposed subdivision on Best Mountain. Cool, hunh? Now, for your evening Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 2/26/08

Northern Illinois and Western Michigan players and coaches join arms during a moment of silence before the start of their basketball game in DeKalb, Ill., tonight. Five students at Northern Illinois were killed on Feb. 14 when a gunman opened fire in a classroom. (AP Photo/Brian Kersey)

Dogwalk Musings: Fourth Grade History

I was talking with a friend this morning and was asked if I had seen a post on a local blog regarding the ongoing controversy about how our local URD does its business. I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry when I read it. I think I probably laughed so hard I cried. This can be found on OpenCDA, a blog created, I believe, for discussions about the inner workings of the Coeur d’Alene city government. To the best of my knowledge no elected official nor employee is available at this site for providing clarification nor assuring the accuracy of the assumptions. That might be something to consider/Dogwalk Musings. More here

APhoto of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 2/26/08

A model wears a creation by Dutch fashion designers Viktor and Rolf for their Fall-Winter 2008-2009 ready-to-wear collection presented in Paris today. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

Top Cutlines

1. The fake wedding ring just wasn’t cutting it when it came to warding off the guys at the bar so Agnes took a new approach — Amy.

2. The new model for the Idaho Legislature bears their mantra of “NO” to any bill that doesn’t pass Rep. Thayn’s “family test”. (It should be noted, however, that Rep. Loertscher was opposed to the use of the female model because “we need to keep mom at home”) — Digger.

3. Although she didn’t say it out loud, the face of Hillary Clinton says it all when asked if she has a “snow-balls” chance in hell of securing the Democratic nomination for President — Dick Haugen.

HM: JohnA, Family Phil & almost everyone else. Great stuff today.

Leslie: Remembering Schrock Crash

We drove by, heading north, shortly after the accident and had to stop for the emergency equipment. We saw the bodies of those 5 children being pulled from the wreckage and laid out under the yellow tarps. We saw the devastating effect it had on the emergency workers. The Schrock’s truck was so completely destroyed it was difficult to tell exactly what type of vehicle it had been/Leslie. More here

Inside Huckleberries — 2/26/08

*Four HBOers have been selected to participate in a blog panel for this spring’s Leadership Coeur d’Alene Media Day: Councilman MikeK, Dan of the County, Dogwalk Musings (my suggestion) and myself.

*Nic Casey/Rants, Raves & Random Thoughts e-mails: “Larry Norman passed away early Sunday morning in his Salem Oregon home. Don’t know if you knew who he was or not, but he was an icon in some circles. One of my heroes. He was currently working on an album with members of The Pixies and Modest mouse.” Link here

*Jerome Pollos/CDA Press has a terrific photo for Wednesday’s Press of a man walking on the boardwalk in the fog. I can’t wait to post the shot tomorrow after the Press publishes it.

*In an e-mail, cartoonist Noah Kroese explains his absence from Huckleberries Online: “I have had other projects which required my attention and my political cartoons will be on hiatus until further notice.”

*Despite adamant denials by insiders to the contrary, that rumor that state Rep. Frank Henderson will challenged Commissioner Todd Tondee in the GOPrimary won’t go away.

Off The Cuff: Little In The Middle

I was recently asked to be a bridesmaid in a friend’s wedding. My first reaction? Dear God, time to get these thighs and abs in gear. My second? Why the heck is my first reaction that I need to lose weight? I had my measurements taken for my dress and I found out I have a 44-inch hip measurement. But you know, I’m at a healthy weight. I’m a woman with curves. I have kadunkadunk. Bring it on, lovey dovey probably ugly bridesmaid dress. I’m not changing a thing.
Christina Lords/UI Argonaut. Off The Cuff

Question: Do you worry about your kadunkadunk when you’re forced to dress up for a special occasion — or wear a swimsuit?

SR Blogs: Otter Defends Golf Tourney

Gov. Butch Otter has sent out a statement speaking out strongly in support of the annual “Governor’s Cup” golf tournament, a fundraiser for scholarships at which “there are opportunities for business people and government people to talk.” He wrote, “Yes, there is golf, trap shooting, fly fishing and other entertainment at some of the most beautiful spots on Earth, like Sun Valley last year and Coeur d’Alene in 2008. Yes, there is camaraderie and good humor and – dare I say it? – fun”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here

SR Blog Roundup:
*Sandwich and discussion of terms/Thuy Nguyen, Daily Briefing
*Float-home bill goes to Senate/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise.
*BlogRadio’s simple to use RSS mp3 podcast system/Tom Sowa, TXT
*Beer drinkers rejoice/Lorie Hutson, The Fresh Sheet
*Spokane Valley Mustard Seed closing/Parker Howell, Here’s The Dirt.

Question: Do you see anything wrong with the Governor’s Cup fundraiser, which brings politicians and businessmen together?

Craig To Obama: Every Idaho D Attended Rally

Craig spoke with presidential candidate Barack Obama just days after his rally in Boise. “Well, a couple of days after he was in Boise, he was back on the floor of the Senate. And he said ‘wow, I couldn’t believe that turnout in Boise!’ Now I said ‘Barack, don’t get too heady on us here, that was every Democrat in the state of Idaho!’,” Craig said. Craig said that while he has a good rapport with Obama - he doesn’t think he’s the right choice for president/KTVB. More here

Question: Are you tired of jokes re: how few Demos live in Idaho?

HBO @ Noon: An Indictment Against Bush?

Laurie Dobson, an independent candidate for U.S. Senate, speaks to reporters outside the Kennebunkport Town Hall after she delivered a “writ of indictment” to have President Bush arrested if he steps foot in Kennebunkport, Maine, today. Dobson, an anti-war activist who lives in Kennebunkport, took the first step Tuesday toward obtaining what she described as an indictment that could lead to the arrest of both the president and Vice President Dick Cheney. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

Question: I have little use for activists or politicians who are still clamoring for impeachment or an indictment at this point in President Bush’s second term. How about you?

Breaking! Priest River Family Laundered Drug $$$

A Priest River couple has pleaded guilty to laundering $1.1 million from an international drug ring that spanned three decades and involved the trafficking of 200,000 pounds of marijuana/Taryn Hecker, Spokesman-Review. More here

HBO’s AM Headlines — 2/26/08

Tom Davenport/SR Photo

“I don’t think I’ll ever stop smiling,” said Coeur d’Alene’s Sadie Simon after the Vikings beat Vallivue for the 5A state basketball championship in Nampa, Idaho Saturday. Handle Extra featured a full page of photos and Greg Lee’s story Saturday

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, SR

*Huetter election turmoil remains: Residency settled, but 2 not on rolls/Amy Cannata, SR — HBOer Dan of the County tries to play Solomon in a small community divided.

*Iceberg! Tugboats back out on Lake Coeur d’Alene/Lindsay Chamberlain, KREM2 — $375 per hour? That’s a good gig for a tugboat at this time of the year.

*Fred Meyer begins $10M remodel/Rick Thomas, Coeur d’Alene Press — Glad to see local business prospering.

*Budget committee nearly axes Women’s Commission funding/Betsy Russell, SR Eye On Boise — Don’t look at me. Like Sen. Joyce Broadsword, I don’t know what the Women’s Commission does either. I would learn, however, before I voted on the matter.

*PF school boundaries set: Katrina Kelly named new Mullan Trail principal/Suzanne Jacobson, Coeur d’Alene Press — The district deserves props for trying not to displace students.

Fisher: Nader Morphing Into Harold Stassen

It’s a good question whether an editorial page should waste ink on the man who is determined to be known as the Harold Stassen of the 21st century, but more than Ralph Nader’s persistence in futility prompts this rebuke. The former consumer champion has grown so detached from reality that his campaign pronouncements must be censured. Nader, remember, claimed in 2000, when he ran as the Green Party’s nominee for president, that there were no discernible differences between major party candidates George W. Bush and Al Gore. Anyone taking that assertion seriously would have to believe today that the nation would still be deep in debt and mired in an Iraq war and that John Roberts and Samuel Alito would be on the Supreme Court if Gore had been president the last eight years/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune. More here

Question: Why is Nader’s announcement for prez driving some D’s crazy?

Clark: Knuckleheads Bring Back Wazzu Glory

Oh, the amber waves of pain. Pullman is supposed to be this sleepy town nestled in the bosom of the nation’s breadbasket. But brawls, insults, disorderly conduct, broken jaws and assaults are shockingly on the rise near the campus of Washington State University. If only the football teams were this aggressive. The Cougs would be Rose Bowl-bound every year. Kids are supposed to go to WSU to get sheepskins - not rap sheets. Sorry to sound the alarm. But all this hooliganism could signal a return to the street-rioting, Dumpster-burning days of yore for Wazzu/Doug Clark, Spokesman-Review. More here

Question: When you think of WSU, what comes to mind?

MamaJD: When Will The Haugenator Begin?

MamaJD: Hey, DFO - could you give us an update on Dick Haugen’s plans for streaming live? When will he start broadcasting? How will we find him? Has he downloaded Gookin’s HTML for Dummies and memorized it for any blogging efforts he may incorporate? You know how I am a fan of The Haugenator!

DFO: The Haugenator begins work for us next Monday. He’s going to work a morning shift, say from 6 to 10 as well as produce radio features for several Spokane stations, I believe. Beyond that, I’m not sure. Mebbe Dick can use this post to expand. I’d guess that our venture into radio’ll probably be a work in progress.

Machiavelli: Nader Squandering Legacy w/Prez Run

I like Nader for all he has done regarding consumer protection, public safety, exposing corporate greed and government corruption, etc. HOWEVER, his second “run for President” convinces me that Nader is a closet republican, commie, pinko, big business lovin, military complex supportin, conservative, right-wing, hatchet man. Can he be so senile that he actually believes his third party candidacy will make some kind of difference? This guy’s galactic ego is inversely proportional to his intelligence. Every good thing Nader has ever done will be forgotten because of his incredibly stupid campaigns/Machiavelli.

WorldNetDaily Poll: Obama Photo

Items: Obama camp slams Clinton ‘fear-mongering’: Responds to circulation of image showing Illinois senator in tribal garb/WorldNetDaily; and: Hillary on Obama photo: ‘I know nothing about it’/ABC News

Question: What do you think of the photo of Obama in African garb?

1. Looks great! Gives me multi-cultural goosebumps
2. All major leaders dress up in regional garb when they travel
3. It was a dirty trick for Hillary to pass it around
4. It doesn’t matter, nothing can stop America’s new political messiah
5. What’s the big deal? This is politics as usual
6. It’s innocent, but will likely fan the flames of bigroty and Islamophobia
7. This photo could do him in like Kerry in the bunny suit and Dukakis in the tank
8. The photo troubles me, but even worse than the photo are the associations it raises
9. Not helpful for the candidate whose middle name is Hussein and last name rhymes with Osama
10. Other

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here

Gonzaga 73, Portland 51

Gonzaga’s Josh Heytvelt, left, shoots against University of Portland’s Luke Sikma, right, during the first half of a college basketball game in Portland Monday. Gonzaga pulled away from Portland in the final 15 minutes to win 73-51. Jim Meehan provides Sportslink story. ESPN scoreboard (AP Photo/Greg Wahl-Stephens)

Parting Shot — 2/25/08

A body boarder launches off a big wave on the south side of the Seal Beach pier in Seal Beach, Calif., where big waves have forced the closure of that city’s pier today. The Manhattan Beach Pier was also closed, and search-and-rescue teams continue to look for a person swept off the rocks in Rancho Palos Verdes on Sunday evening. (AP Photo/Los Angeles Times, Allen J. Schaben)

Avista Customers To Get Small Credit

Item: Avista customers to get small credit/Becky Kramer, Spokesman-Review

More Info: Avista’s share of the proposed payout is $9.6 million. According to the Spokane-based utility, that would translate into a 4 percent credit on customers’ bills in Washington. Idaho customers would receive a 9 percent credit.

Question: What do you think of this small credit on your future electric bill?

HBO’s Best of the Local Blogs — 2/25/08

“Our Sunday afternoon drive took us towards Rathdrum on Burlington Road where a herd of nearly 40 elk winters each year,” posts Kerri Thoerson/OnLocation North Idaho. “They’re an elusive band as they travel across the prairie to favored feeding grounds but luck was with us.” More here

Say what you will about the recently-approved U.S. economic stimulus package, it’s being enthusiastically welcomed by those eeking out a living on Social Security, SSI or a small pension. One 77-year-old woman said although the anticipated $300 won’t be enough to fix her leaky roof—it will enable her to replace the 28-year-old mattress that’s giving her back aches. Another retiree said it will be a gift equal to half her monthly stipend. A third said it will bring a little relief into a world devoid of the “three C’s.” Cars, cable and cell phones. “They’re luxuries,” she tells her friends, “not necessities”/Paula Davenport, The Far Corner. More here

HBO Numbers (for week of Feb. 17-23): 50896 page-views and 29066 unique views; (a year ago = 33008/18742)

Sara Anderson/F-Words is ailing here and here

*Elton John in concert at Pullman — or not/MamaJD
*Hoodoo Howdydo/Slight Detour
*A witty look at Oscar nominees/Here In Idaho
*Never take love for granted/Hauser Thoughts
*Crappiest kids’ meal toy ever/Otis G Experience
*She reminds me of Gore/Dogwalk Musings
*Trying to “swift-boat” Obama would be useless/Arch Druid
*Roller Derby/A Butterfly Moment
*Stardust: A terrific lullaby collection/A Family Runs Through It
*Digging out (w/photos)/From A Simple Mind
*Monday started last night … sigh/JeanC’s Cat House & Shooting Gallery
*Extra Day/Live, Love, Laugh, Hope

Question: How do you plan to spend your share of the economic stimulus package?

KREM2: Moose Drops Dead Near PF Home

Several moose have been spotted over the last few days in Post Falls, but now some are starting to succumb to the harsh winter/KREM2. More here

Forbes: NW Cities Among Most Lustful*

1. Denver
2. (tie) Portland & San Antonio
4. Seattle in fourth
5. Boise & Salt Lake City

Story here

*The results are largely based on the amount of contraceptives purchased per capita.

Question: Do you think of lustful if/when you think of Boise?

You May Be A Redneck If …

Silver Money, a 3-year-old silver-dapple miniature horse, after being loaded into Paula Perry’s minivan Saturday during the Horse Fair at Bittle Equestrian Center in Owensboro, Ky. “You know you’re a redneck when your minivan doubles as a horse trailer,” Perry said. Perry and Lisa Paulsen won Silver Money at the Kentucky State Fair. (AP Photo/Messenger-Inquirer, John Dunham)

A Matter Of Opinion: Keeping the Faith

Item: Americans change faith at rising rates/NYTimes

More Info: More than a quarter of adult Americans have left the faith of their childhood to join another religion or no religion, according to a new survey of religious affiliation by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. The report, titled “U.S. Religious Landscape Survey,” depicts a highly fluid and diverse national religious life. If shifts among Protestant denominations are included, then it appears that 44 percent of Americans have switched religious affiliations.

Question (from Gary Crooks/A Matter Of Opinion): Have you changed religious affiliation in your lifetime? If so, why?

Eye On Boise: Solons Mull Field Burning Regs

Idaho would start a new field-burning regulation program that makes public health a priority, ends the state’s practice of keeping field-burn locations a secret and cuts off burning when pollution rises, under legislation introduced this morning. The new system is part of an agreement to allow field-burning to resume in Idaho; it’s been banned for the past year due to a federal court decision/Betsy Russell, SR Eye On Boise. More here

Eye On Boise roundup: Otter backs off private prison concept; Senate confirms Ed Board president; and State publications vanishing due to outdated system.

Question: Which of the following choices reflects your feeling about field burning? It needs to be reigned in? Do away with it altogether? It was fine before the moratorium was imposed last year?

HBO @ Noon — 2/25/08

Item: Resolution urges Congress to regulate Internet porn/Heath Druzin, Idaho Statesman

More Info: The resolution asks Congress to “take action to stop children and employees from accessing Internet pornography” and asks for a “technology-based” solution to allow people to subscribe to Internet services that exclude pornography.

Question: Should Congress regulate Internet pornography?

Can I Have Fries With That?

Michael Berry, left, and Steve Mallie put a burger on a scale as Mallie’s Sports Bar & Grill hoping to set a new world’s record for the heaviest hamburger on Saturday in Southgate, Mich. After 12 hours of preparation and baking, the 134-pound (over 60 kilos) burger emerged at Mallie’s Sports Bar and Grill on Saturday. Mallie’s unofficial record outweighs the 123-pound (over 55 kilos) burger made last year by Denny’s Beer Barrel Pub, of Clearfield, Pa. Authenticating Mallie’s claim could take a few weeks. (AP Photo)

Question: What is the most meat you’ve eaten at a sitting?

College-Age Drunks Assaulting Pullman

Item: Fighting, assaults in Pullman on the rise/Shawn Vestal, Spokesman-Review

More Info: Two attacks – and two broken jaws – have gotten most of the attention on the subject of violence this year at Washington State University. But police statistics show that fistfights, brawls and other public confrontations have been rising in Pullman for years. The number of assaults reported has climbed 41 percent since 2000, and the number of disorderly conduct complaints – which can include “assaultive behavior” – has more than doubled, according to police department statistics.

Question: Were you a fighter or a lover in college?

JimF: Leaking Arguments Against Boat Safety

So a 12-year-old who doesn’t know what he’s doing wants to putter around a lake in a fishing boat with a 5-horsepower motor. What’s the worst thing that could happen? Don’t answer that. You might prove you’re smarter than the Idaho House Revenue Committee. Committee members killed a bill requiring children under the age of 14 to take a boating safety course and be under adult supervision before driving Jet-skis or motorboats. There might be valid arguments against such a bill. If there are, however, they didn’t come from committee members/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune. More here

Question: Was the House Revenue Committee correct in killing a bill that would require boat pilots under the age of 14 to take safety courses and be under adult supervision?

Letter Writer: What Was Kayak Father Thinking?

re: CDA Press photo on front page Thursday, showing shirtless father with small boy in a kayak on Lake Coeur d’Alene

This is in response to the picture on the front page of the Coeur d’Alene Press on Feb. 22. titled “Paddling along.” Granted it is a cute picture, but it clearly shows a male adult and a male child in an improperly rigged kayak (no skirt) and neither occupant has a life jacket on. The picture also doesn’t show the lake temperature being not all that far above freezing and a lot of ice still on the lake surface. Had that kayak overturned, who is going to save who? Getting dunked suddenly and unexpectedly into that cold of water generates a shock to the system that in some cases causes the victims to gasp, thus inhaling water/Gary Dagastine, Post Falls. More Coeur d’Alene Press letter here

Top Actors 2008

From left, British actor Daniel Day-Lewis poses with the Oscar for best actor for his work in “There Will Be Blood,” British actress Tilda Swinton poses with the Oscar for best supporting actress for her work in “Michael Clayton,” French actress Marion Cotillard poses with the Oscar for best actress for her work in “La Vie en Rose,” and Spanish actor Javier Bardem poses with the Oscar for best supporting actor for his work in “No Country for Old Men” at the 80th Academy Awards Sunday in Los Angeles. Story here(AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian)

Movies & More broke down the Oscars Sunday

Question: Is there a movie that won an Oscar last night that you would now like to see??

Not Quite Ready For A Dog Track

Jesse Tinsley/Spokesman-Review

Carolyn Smelcer, left, with a dachshund named Kirby, and Tony Edwards, right, with Rolo, prepare the dogs for race training at a fundraiser for the Dachshund rescue group, Dachshund Rescue NW Saturday in Spokane. The gathering was a series of classes for small dogs, with fees going to the rescue group. Most of the participants belong to the Dachshund Club of Spokane, which holds a popular series of dachshund races every year.

Quotable Quote: Obama Is Messiah In Post-Christian USA

“Thus, in post-Judeo-Christian America, the sports club is the new church. Global warming is the new religion. Vegetarianism is the new sacrament. Hooking up, the new prayer. Talk therapy, the new witnessing. Tattooing and piercing, the new sacred symbols and rituals. And apparently, Barack Obama is the new messiah”/Kathleen Parker, Orlando Sentinel. More here

Question: Agree? Disagree?

Honest George: Repubs Won’t Give Free Ride To Obama

When Edwards dropped his campaign I drifted into Obama’s camp. He is exciting and does promise a brand of hope that we haven’t seen for a long time. But I’ve seen how the Republicans work - they very well might reduce Obama into being our Dukakis, McGovern or Kerry candidate by election day 2008. Obama hasn’t been openly seriously vetted. The Democratic Party should be doing this, fast, because he sure will be by September. The conservatives are biding their time, I’m sure/Honest George.

NYTimes Ombudsman Blasts McCain “Tryst” Article

The New York Times’ ombudsman strongly criticized the newspaper’s insinuation this week that White House hopeful John McCain had a tryst with a female lobbyist 31 years his junior, nearly 10 years ago. “The newspaper found itself in the uncomfortable position of being the story as much as publishing the story, in large part because, although it raised one of the most toxic subjects in politics — sex — it offered readers no proof that McCain and (Vicki) Iseman had a romance,” public editor Clark Hoyte wrote in the Times’ online edition. In an article signed by four reporters that raised more backlash against the daily than the candidate, the Times Thursday cited unnamed McCain advisers who, “convinced the relationship had become romantic,” had asked Iseman to keep away from the senator. “The article was notable for what it did not say,” wrote Hoyte in his column to be published Sunday. “It did not say what convinced the advisers that there was a romance/New York Times. More here

Question: On a scale of 1-10, how much do you respect the New York Times?

DougC: Smile, You’re On Tattle-Tale Camera

On Monday, the City Council will take an important vote on whether to turn Spokane into Spy Land. This would happen by paying an Arizona company to operate sneaky intersection cameras set up to catch idiot drivers who run red lights. Look. I won’t try to mess with you. Everybody knows Spokane has more red runners than a Beijing marathon. Nobody wants to intentionally blow through a light. But many of our motorists suffer from a peculiar medical condition. The sight of a yellow light causes a driver’s right foot to involuntarily thrust forward/Doug Clark, Spokesman-Review. More here

Question: When did you last receive a driving citation?

Trib: Moscow Police Doubt UI Rape Story

Moscow police have expressed doubts about a sexual assault report received Thursday morning on the University of Idaho campus. “At this time there doesn’t appear to be someone out there that could be endangering campus,” Assistant Police Chief David Duke said this morning. Duke said investigators were able to contradict some statements made by the 18-year-old female UI student who alleged the assault, but she has stuck with her story. He said the UI Dean of Students office is working with the woman during what he called a “cool-down period”/Joel Mills, Lewiston Tribune. More here

Hat Tip: Idawa

Wild Card/Saturday — 2/23/08

First, you should give yourselves a hand for the superb main comments thread from Friday. As you can see below, I posted five comments from that thread. And I probably could have posted five more. It was that good. We’re attracting new blood to HBO — to go with the many quality holdovers. Thanks for making this blog as much fun for me to read as I hope it is for you. Now, for your Saturday Wild Card …

Oscars: Rain, Strike Steal Sparkle

Item: Best to expect the worst Oscars ever/Nikki Finke’s Deadline Hollywood Daily

More Info: A chilly rain is forecast for Sunday so the Red Carpet has been tented. Nerves are still frayed from the writers strike just ended. oscars08-getting-ready2.jpgPanic is setting in about an actors strike that may be on the way. Few in America or the world have seen the nominated pics and performances. There’s no suspense because Hollywood has long ago guessed who and what will probably win. The vast majority of the presenters aren’t big names. And not only has the host done it before to really poor ratings, but Jon Stewart couldn’t even find anything funny to say about it while guesting on Larry King Live.

Question: Why do you plan/not plan to watch the Oscars Sunday?

WorldNetDaily: Obama’s Cult-Like Following

What do you make of Barack Obama’s cult-like following?

1. The adulation is well-deserved
2. He’s the most charismatic leader in America in years
3. People have been waiting for leadership like this
4. He simply outshines the other candidates
5. It’s a bit disturbing but all that will change in time
6. It’s amazing for someone who speaks only in platitudes
7. It shows you how powerful symbolism is as opposed to substance
8. The willingness of masses to follow campaign slogans never ceases to amaze me
9. Throughout history certain leaders have cast their spell over the masses to their ultimate peril
10. Other

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here

DavidL: Confessions Of An Almost Hashbury Hippie

I had a most-unusual perspective since I lived in the heart of the Haight-Ashbury (AKA the Hashbury) during the height of the Love Generation’s reign in power. Not only did I live in the heart of the Hashbury District, including a winter spent living down the street from Kesey’s House, and another three doors down from Joplin’s House on Fell Street, but for three years I walked each day down the infamous Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley through love fests, riots and various other forms of civil insurrection/David Laird. More here

Dan of the County: Jury Duty Beckons

“You are hereby commanded that, laying aside all excuses, you appear at the Court Room of the said District Court…” says the notice. Yep, County Clerks get called for Jury Duty too. For a brief moment when I just saw it was a bright colored paper in a window envelope I was thinking more of “great, a refund check.”

Sgt. Christie: Anti-LCDCers Don’t Want Answers

I think Damn Yankee just finally made me understand why when Council people or LCDC Board members do their best to provide answers it is still not enough..”but in the end I will never support LCDC-in principle” That clarifies a lot for me. No need to keep answering the same quetion over and over to individuals who understand the make up of urban renewal. They simply do not agree with the mechanism so therefore any taxing entity that employs the assistance of urban renewal is not to be supported. That explains the attack on the school district for the request to LCDC for assistance with Sorenson. And also the pressure on the college to not associate with LCDC what so ever/Christie Wood. More here

Parting Shot — 2/22/08

Towan, an orangutan, hangs out in a tree at the Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, Thursday. He, along with his twin sister Chinta, will celebrate their 40th birthday Saturday by opening gift-wrapped presents with their favorite treats and indulging in special ” orangutan” birthday cupcakes. (AP Photo/Andy Rogers)


Illustration: Tumblewords

probing each layer I peel my sins,
disrobing as if it were my body
remove timeworn transgressions
fold them neatly in special bins

stripped to innocent newness
awkward within my skin
I dress in faultless clothing
to acquire fresh and novel sins.

Sue Turner/Tumblewords

HBO’s Best of the Local Blogs — 2/22/08

“I never see robins in the winter, at least not in my North Idaho yard and neighborhood,” posts Kerri Thoreson/OnLocation North Idaho. “We participated in the Great Backyard Bird Count and our travels took us “on location” to Q’emlin Park on the Spokane River. There were the expected mallards and Canada geese but much to my surprise there were robins everywhere. At least three dozen we counted, including the one pictured here enjoying berries for breakfast.”

I just deleted from my inbox what seems like 200-bazillionth email I have received that in reality is an internet hoax. I don’t know why people MUST forward every little ha-ha, dire warning, amber alert, political speech, dumb joke, goofball video, and call-to-arms to their entire address book, which includes me?MamaJD. More here

HBO Numbers (for Thursday, Feb. 21): 8564 pageviews, 4955 unique views

*OrangeTV: Wednesday Local Music Radar: Robby French
*Granati: Cell-phoning through the years
*Otis G: Thoughts from the freeway
*ThomG: Breaking down Blogfest ‘08 personalities
*JeanC’s Cat House: Eclipse photos
*Hauser Thoughts: Hauser Lake moose
*Cis: Coordination 0, balance 2
*Sweet & Sour Herb: Spring may be just around the corner
*Arch Druid: Jonah Goldberg strikes out
*Family Phil: Top 25 kids songs of 2007

Question: How do you make friends and relatives who habitually spam you with “forwards” stop?

Meatless Friday

Item: Recalled beef buried 6 feet under/SR

Dan Pelle/Spokesman-Review

A frontend loader pushes 26,000 lbs of meat belonging to the Central Valley, East Valley, Cheney, Mead and Nine Mile Falls school districts into the North Side Landfill today in Spokane. The meat is part of a 143 million pound recall by the USDA of frozen beef from a California slaughter house and packing plant because of concerns it may be tainted. Sara Leaming SR story

Blacks Worry About Obama’s Safety

Presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., greets supporters following his address at a rally in this recent file photo, in Beloit, Wis. As Obama moves ever closer to becoming America’s first black president many worry about his safety. Story here (Rick Bowmer/AP Photo File)

Question: Is this concern legitimate in 21st century America?

Sheriff Rocky Wants To Re-Up

Sheriff Rocky Watson announced he plans to seek re-election, in a press release provided to Huckleberries Online this afternoon. He listed several programs he wants to continue or see through, including his plans to use inmates to remove recyclables from garbage and to clean and maintain the animal shelter.

SR Blogs: Let’s Ignore TV, Radio Gasbags

A caller asked today why we didn’t publish something in the Friday edition about Bill O’Reilly and his remarks about Michelle Obama. I explained to the caller that we devoted considerable space in today’s paper to last night’s Clinton-Obama debate, as well as the follow-up to the New York Times story about John McCain and his ties to lobbyists. I noted that we consider those two stories to be far more substantive than whatever a biased, self-important commentator has to say about anything. Here’s the context: Michelle Obama has been criticized for a remark she made about about not being proud of her country until just recently. O’Reilly talked about that statement and then used a reference to lynching, which had our caller concerned/Managing Editor Gary Graham, News Diary. More here

SR Blog Roundup
*A sea mammal for thought/Thuy Nguyen, Daily Briefing
*Barcams now compete with dorm cams/Tom Sowa, TXT
*Spokane gets props in Pitchfork/Isamu Jordan, Sound Wave
*Coens study stupids like us/Dan Webster, Movies & More

Question: Should newspapers react more to hubbub started by radio and television talk show hosts?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 2/22/08

Fire Chief Andrew Lemberes helps clear ice as volunteers try to pull a snow groomer out of Lake Cascade, Idaho, Thursday. On Wednesday, the fire department dive team hooked up chains and cables. “We’re hoping we don’t have to dive again today,” said Lemberes. KTVB story here (AP Photo/The Idaho Satesman, Katherine Jones)

1. Top Spokane: Two young Spokane men were convicted today of felony dog-fighting charges in a trial where the evidence was so circumstantial that the judge considered dismissing the charges before deciding to send the case to the jury for a decision here/SR.

2. Top Idaho: The Idaho House has voted 55-8 to ratify fuel tax agreements with four Idaho Indian tribes, ending years of rancorous debate and litigation here/SR.

3. Top Sports: The Cleveland Cavaliers called up former Idaho Vandals player Kaniel Dickens from the NBA’s Developmental League today so they’ll have enough players to face the Washington Wizards here/Statesman.

4. Blogosphere: News cycles/Dogwalk Musings; McCain story vs. Craig story/Kevin Richert, Statesman; Fry Day/Marianne Love, Slight Detour; Wolves awaken to more dangerous world/Rob’s Idaho Perspective; and Huckabee plays defense/Adam’s Blog.

5. IMHO: Baynes’ dunk delivers/John Blanchette, SR; McCain story vs. Craig story/Kevin Richert, Statesman;”>Idaho board needs scrutiny from Otter/Idaho Statesman; Sen. Murray staying superquiet on pick/Joel Connelly, Seattle PI; and No kids for me/Susannah Cummings, UI Argonaut.

6. News Roundup: Idaho AG: Ed Board may have violated Open Meeting law/SR; Kempthorne stays out of wolf fray/Lewiston Tribune; UIdaho works on emergency lockdown plan/UI Argonaut; Aftershocks continue to rattle Wells, Nevada/KTVB; Jury won’t see some photos of Schrock children/KREM2; and Police kill Nampan armed with piece of glass/KTVB.

Orbusmax Special: Mother of new-born found in toilet faces attempted murder charge here.

HBO’s AM Headlines — 2/22/08

On Nov. 14, 2007, then Huetter mayor-elect Brad Keene, left, and Huetter City Council members Luke Gibler and Jeni Brown posed for Kathy Plonka’s photo at the intersection of Seely and Seltice Road near Huetter. Now, Keene and Brown have been declared nonresidents by Huetter’s attorney. Story by Taryn Hecker

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, Spokesman-Review

*Family takes pride in adding to Priest River home/Marylyn Cork, Spokesman-Review (w/Kathy Plonka’s slide show) — I totally envy do-it-your-selfers.

*Tribal fuel tax pacts ratified/Betsy Russell, SR Eye On Boise — No surprise that Indian basher Dick Harwood voted with the minority in the 55-8 vote. District 2 should be ashamed that the St. Maries Republican is its representative.

*Neighbors discuss Hayden Canyon:Developer makes effort to convince public his project is good for everyone/Suzanne Jacobson, Coeur d’Alene Press — I’m glad that’s in someone else’s ‘hood.

*Rathdrum holding its own with growth/Brian Walker, Coeur d’Alene Press — If Rathdrum can do something about its downtown, it’ll be a great place to live.

*Heyburn eyes water, sewer problems/Ralph Bartholdt, St. Maries Gazette-Record — Can you say coliform and E. coli, baybee?

Trib: Midwives Shouldn’t Dispense Medicine

Midwives are many splendid things. One thing they are not is trained physicians. Yes, they are highly trained, but not even registered nurses - with far more medical education than midwives - are allowed to play doctor and dispense medication. And it’s not just pills some midwives want to give out. They also want to provide intravenous fluids and emergency oxygen. Fine. Let them go to medical school. Some people’s faith in midwifery borders on the religious. They point to the countless births midwives oversee every year without a hitch. It’s true. Relying on a midwife is perfectly safe, unless something goes dreadfully wrong. If it does, there’s no substitute for a physician and a hospital/Tom Henderson, Lewiston Tribune. More here

*Nathaniel Hoffman/ take on midwifery

Question: Should midwives be allowed to dispense medication and provide intravenous fluids and emergency oxygen?

Idaho AG: Ed Board May Have Violated Law …

Spokesman-Review brought suit in Open Meeting Law case/Betsy Russell, SR Eye On Boise

More Info: The Idaho State Board of Education may have violated the Idaho Open Meeting Law, Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden announced this morning, but because of a recent state Supreme Court decision, he couldn’t find that they’d “knowingly” done so. “The board would benefit from receiving training on the open meeting law,” Wasden said at a news conference – adding that that training already has been scheduled.

DFO: Someday, state and local officials are going to learn that the Open Meeting Law applies to them.

Question: Do you think The Spokesman-Review makes too much commotion about Open Meeting laws?

Online Poll: Academy Awards

The Academy Awards will air Sunday, Feb. 24. Will you watch?/Idaho Statesman.


LCDC Hires PR Firm For $35K

Item: LCDC hires PR firm for $35,000/Lucy Dukes, Coeur d’Alene Press; Related: Forum discusses URD strategies

More Info: The Lake City Development Corporation has hired public relations firm Pac/West Communications on a $35,000 four-month contract to develop a communication strategy. The urban renewal agency has talked for months about engaging the community more, and officials thought they had been doing better, but they still hear LCDC is not open enough, said vice chairman Jim Elder. “We finally decided we needed professional help,” he said.

Question: Is this a wise expenditure of Lake City Development Corp. funds?

Update: Moscow Cops Seek UI Rape Suspect

Moscow police are looking for a white man after an 18-year-old University of Idaho student reported she was sexually assaulted early Thursday morning on campus. Assistant Police Chief David Duke said the woman told police she had been dropped off near the UI’s Thophilus Tower residence hall shortly after 3 a.m. and was walking to her sorority house when she was assaulted near the campus’ central mall. The woman described her attacker as a white man in his 20s or 30s, about 5 feet 10 inches tall, with a medium build, wearing tan pants and a dark blue hooded sweatshirt, Duke said/Lewiston Tribune. More here

CDA Mom: My UI Daughter Needs Martial Arts Skills

re: UI student reports campus rape

I have a 19 year old daughter that goes to U of I and was in the same soriety that the victim was in (not that the rape occured at the house). I do not want to see any girl/woman raped on campus and I do believe that the adminstration should be responsible for keeping students safe. For my part as a parent — I will be getting my daughter some personal protection and having my husband teach her some defensive martial arts/CDA Mom.

Bette The Librarian: Where’s Bob Hough?

Bette Ammon, Coeur d’Alene Librarian: Can someone out there help me with this question received today from New York?

Dear Librarian: I have a Library patron who is trying to identify a piece of music he owned in the mid-1960’s. He’d heard it on the Couer d’Alene radio station at the time; it was saxophone instrumental only & may’ve been a DJ copy for that station, then he (my patron) bought it somewhere. I am trying to locate Bob “Bubblehead” Hough, a DJ at the time who I believe may know what the piece of music is. I see by several web sites that he lives in Utah. I’ve e-mailed “Philco Bill” who now lives out of your area & have heard nothing. Have also e-mailed Julianne Hough, who seems to be Bob Hough’s granddaughter & has been dancing on the TV show “Dancing with the Stars”. I’ve heard nothing. Would you happen to have an address & phone number for Bob “Bubblehead” Hough.

DFO: Betty, I believe Bob still lives on 4th Street in the Midtown area. He’s listed in the phone book. Indeed, he’s the grandfather of the “Dancing With the Stars” sensation, Julianne Hough.

Wild Card/Thursday — 2/21/08

Now that Barack Obama and John McCain are wrapping up the nominations from their parties, the mud-slinging has begun — by the media. The New York Times leads the way today with its story re: McCain and a bombshell lobbyist (see below). WorldNetDaily is doing its best to keep up by trying to link Obama to a Communist mentor. Looks like winter is over and the mud-slinging season is about to begin. Now, for your daily Wild Card …

Wanted: Are You Qualified For FBI?

The FBI is looking for 1,000 agents. You must meet all the following requirements to get a second look:

*I’m a U.S. citizen or a citizen of the Northern Mariana Islands.
*I’m at least 23 years old but no older than 37.
*I’ve never been convicted of a felony.
*I have a valid driver’s license.
*I have a four-year degree from an accredited college or university.
*I have at least three years of professional work experience.
*I can pass a drug test and haven’t violated the FBI drug policy.
*I’ve never defaulted on a student loan insured by the U.S. government.
*I can qualify in one of five entry areas: accounting; computer science/information technology; language; law; or diversified.
*I’m in good health and in good shape.
*I’m available to work anywhere in the world.

Question: Do you meet all these qualifications?

Hat Tip: Tayrn Hecker

APhoto of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 2/21/08

President Bush is pictured with traditional Liberian dancers before a lunch today in Monrovia, Liberia. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Top Cutlines

1. “I just want y’all to know how much I appreciate Liberians. Without you, our kids would have no place to read them books” — Family Phil.

2. Leaning to the right (of course) when he tries to dance, President Bush thanks the dancers for naming their town after one of his favorites, Marilyn Monrove — John Austin.

3. “Hey, I’m just going to wander over there and shake hands with some of them National Geographicals,” said Bush — Indy.

HM: Cis

19YO Gets Fixed Life Term For Killing Parents

Christopher Anderson/SR Photo

Convicted murderer Bryan Kim is escorted by Spokane County Sheriff Deputies into Superior Court this afternoon to be sentenced. Kim killed both his parents at the family home in December of 2006.

Item: Kim sentenced to fixed life in prison/Karen Dorn Steele, SR; KREM2 video: Kim had a history of violence.

More Info:Kim was found guilty of two counts of first-degree murder for stabbing his father, Richard Kim, and bludgeoning and strangling his mother, Terri Kim, on Dec. 5, 2006, as they returned to their Mt. Spokane home after work.

Question: Is a fixed life sentence too harsh for a mentally ill 19-year-old, despite the heinous nature of his crimes?

PaleoMedia: It’s Midwifery, Not Quackery

We had our first baby on a mat on the floor of a hospital room with a veteran midwife who was a nurse with a master’s degree to boot. Yet the “traditional” hospital staff could not stand the thought of it. Across Idaho, there are dozens of midwives delivering hundreds of babies a year. Some of them have professional training. Some have lay training or apprenticeship experience. For the second year now, they are asking the Legislature to offer a state license for their profession. The midwives give a few reasons for the request: They want to be able to carry some key drugs to births, to submit insurance claims, to make childbirth in Idaho safer and give prospective parents more choices/Nathaniel Hoffman, More here

DFO: I want to introduce you to a solid new Web site that covers Idaho politics and the Legislature — Nathaniel Hoffman’s here. Nathaniel wrote the midwifery column for Boise Weekly. You can check out other recent work by him here and here.

Question: What do you think of midwifery?

Jesse Tinsley Shoots Lunar Eclipse

Jesse Tinsley/SR Photos

007: Boise Media Going Nuts Over NV Quake

re: EARTHQUAKE! Still shakin’: Aftershocks follow 6.0 quake/KTVB

The historic district of Wells, Nev., sustained severe damage today after an earthquake hit the small eastern Nevada town. The magnitude of the quake, initially estimated at 6.3, was later revised to 6.0 by the U.S. Geological Survey’s National Earthquake Information Center in Golden, Colo. (AP Photo/Elko Daily Free Press, Ross Anderson)

The media is going absolutely nuts here in Boise over this earthquake. When returning from lunch, I actually heard an interview with a state employee who was at work really early this morning (!), and she said when the earthquake hit, her chair moved a bit and she looked over and saw her co-worker’s plant moving, and the plant would not stop moving!!!/James Bond.

Related: Quake shakes Jill Kuraitis/New West Boise

Question: Have you ever experienced a major earthquake?

SR Blogs: Life BK Seems So Long Ago

Instead of “B.C.” or “A.D.,” the dating system my husband and I use at our house is “B.K.” B.K. – “Before Kids” – obviously refers to that period not so long ago when we could stay out late, sleep in, have leisure time to read books or just relax. Looking back, I now wonder what I ever did with all those extra hours B.K. — those years when I didn’t have to change diapers or stay up all night to nurse or comfort a child. While I miss having free time, I’m a lot more satisfied now. I also believe that I’ve become a better person as a result of my kids/Virginia de Leon, Parents Council. More here

*Poll: Good news for Gregoire, Obama/Rich Roesler, Eye On Olympia
*Ask not what a politician could do to language/Jim Camden, Spin Control 2.0
*Most Internet users are … girls/Vox Box
*Brighter outlook for real estate, condo markets/Parker Howell, Here’s The Dirt
*Q-and-A with Gonzaga’s Mark Few/Jim Meehan, Sportslink
*Sticker thief could be one of us/Out On The Town

Question: How has parenthood changed you? What lessons have you learned from your own children?

Honeymoon Over: Times Links McCain To Lobbyist

Republican presidential hopeful, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., accompanied by his his wife Cindy, speaks at a news conference in Toledo, Ohio, today.

Mr. McCain, 71, and the lobbyist, Vicki Iseman, (pictured right) 40, both say they never had a romantic relationship. But to his advisers, even the appearance of a close bond with a lobbyist whose clients often had business before the Senate committee Mr. McCain led threatened the story of redemption and rectitude that defined his political identity. It had been just a decade since an official favor for a friend with regulatory problems had nearly ended Mr. McCain’s political career by ensnaring him in the Keating Five scandal. In the years that followed, he reinvented himself as the scourge of special interests, a crusader for stricter ethics and campaign finance rules, a man of honor chastened by a brush with shame/New York Times. More here

Question: The XX Factor, a Slate online mag women’s blog, contends that this New York Times attack article connecting him to “a sexy blonde” will help geezer McCain. What do you think?

Online Poll: Guns On College Campuses

If citizens were allowed to carry guns on college campuses, it would … (Lewiston Tribune)

*Increase safety
*Magnify the possibility of violence
*Have little or no effect

Gray Wolves No Longer Endangered

Item: Wolves coming off endangered list: Some 1500 now roam Idaho, Montana, Wyoming/Associated Press

More Info: The loss of federal protection allows states to move forward with public hunts for the animals, possibly as soon as this fall. Environmental groups have said they will sue the federal government to keep the animal listed.

Question: Are you comfortable with gray wolves being hunted, now that recovery efforts seem to be successful?

DavidL: No Time To Act At NIU Even If Armed

re: Online Poll: Guns on college campuses

Barring access to the police reports, I submit despite having a gun on your person, even granting exemplary skills using your weapon, you still only prevented a few deaths and injuries. You could not stop Kazmierczak because there was no time to react to his presence. Perhaps even a certified police officer with a sidearm could have done better because they train for this type of incident, but still, even in that case, someone would have been injured or died. There was no time to react/David Laird. More here

Eye Opener: A Disappointing Lunar Eclipse?

Joshua Trujillo/Seattle PI

An airplane passes in front of a darkening moon as it becomes a total lunar eclipse on Wednesday in Seattle.

Expecting more from cosmos

I’m done with the solar system. I’m just not the kind of guy who can put up with a one-sided relationship. The heavens keep letting me down. Wednesday night was the limit. I spent over an hour watching the total lunar eclipse from my makeshift observatory on the cold outdoor patio on the 7th floor of The Spokesman-Review/Chronicle building. Am I wrong to expect more action out of the cosmos? I saw “Cloverfield” the other day. It has a monster trashing New York City like some speed freak rocker in a hotel room. Now that’s some serious special effects. The eclipse plot, alas, was tedious and predictable. Plus, the whole thing could have used a killer soundtrack/Doug Clark, Spokesman-Review. More here

Related: Early evening eclipse a treat for sky watchers/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR

Question: On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 being the star of Bethlehem stopped over the manger), how would you rate Wednesday night’s celestial display?

Parting Shot — 2/20/08

Christopher Anderson/Spokesman-Review

A small group listens as (left to right) Doug Floyd, Gordon Jackson and Carla Savalli talk about the Spokesman-Review ethics at the Spokane Wash. downtown library today. HBOer Rocket’s Brain Trust attended and is mentioned in Thuy Nguyen’s Daily Briefing blog coverage here.

Far Corner: Girls Became Women w/Girdle

Forget the Bas Mitzvah. Quinceanera, too. A girl’s right of passage in the 60’s was her first girdle — a necessity then. Panty hose hadn’t been invented yet. Nylons had to be fastened by wire to rubbery tabs sewn into the girdle. (See photo above). Even taut cheerleaders sported girdles in those days—and they didn’t have a thing to hide. Or minimize. Today’s woman can put synthetics on her side (as well as her waist, thighs, buns and bust). New, sleek shapewear is effective and feels good — unlike its ancestors/Paula Davenport, The Far Corner. More here

Question: What was the right of passage for your g-g-gender in your g-g-generation?

APhoto of the Day — 2/20/08

Top models Laura, left, and Edita pose backstage prior to the Iceberg women’s Fall/Winter 2008/2009 collection presented in Milan, Italy, today. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

Top Cutlines

1. Careful, girls. You know what happens when you rub two sticks together! — Family Phil.

2. Jennifer Garner tries to make out with herself in a mirror — Otis G.

3. “Where’s that stinkin translator? I said the models should get to KNOW each other, not NOSE each other!!!” — MikeS.

HM: KeithinCDA & JohnA

Extra! Spokane, NIdaho Schools To Dump Beef

Spokane and North Idaho school districts plan to incinerate thousands of pounds of beef as part of the nation’s largest-ever recall of meat. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has ordered schools have been ordered to burn anything in excess of 50 cases of frozen meat coming for the California-based Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Co., officials said/Spokesman-Review. More here

Question: Is the decision to destroy the meat a matter of overkill or reasonable precaution?

“Phantom,” “Color Purple” Broadway Shows …

Coming to Spokane: “Ain’t Misbehavin,” “Spamalot” also in 2008-90 lineup/Jim Kershner, Spokesman-Review

Question: What do you think of the Best of Broadway lineup this year?

Spring Training In Peoria

Seattle Mariners outfielder Ichiro Suzuki, bottom right, talks to reporters after baseball spring training today in Peoria, Ariz. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Question: Who’s your favorite Seattle Mariner?

SR Blogs: Editors Discuss Offensive Language

Coming tomorrow is a preview on talks on the phone with feature writer Jim Kershner. But in the clip, Poundstone says “goddamn.” Editors had a quick discussion but here are the talking points, both on and off camera: Should offensive language be flagged? Does that increase the possibility that the content will be accessed? As for readers who would be offended, does it extend past the highly religious?/Thuy Nguyen, SR Daily Briefing. More here (scroll down)

SR Blog Roundup:
*This just in from McCain HQ/Jim Camden, Spin Control 2.0
*The realities of being transexual/Out on the Town
*PlayXpert offers tool for online gamers/Tom Sowa, TXT
*Spokane resident quoted in New York Times/Gary Graham, News Diary
*Sourdough pancakes/Lorie Hutson, Fresh Sheet

Question: Should aggressive multi-media newspapers like the SR have different standards for print and online, in dealing with cuss words?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 2/20/08

“Harry the Husky,” left, and cheerleaders from the University of Washington step out on the wing of a new Horizon Air jet painted with the logo and colors of the university Tuesday at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, as they celebrate its official unveiling. The plane is the fourth of four planes painted with northwest school colors, the others representing Washington State, Oregon and Oregon State. (Ted S. Warren/AP Photo)

1. Top Northwest: Amber, a silver Labrador retriever who kept her nine puppies alive for 7 to 10 days in the cold until rescue, has become an overnight celebrity in NW Montana here/Daily Inter Lake.

2. Top Idaho: Boise State football supporters have donated $37 million to fund construction of a new state-of-the-art press box and luxury seats - and much of that money is tax deductible here/Statesman.

3. Top Washington: A Kennewick man shot and killed his neighbor’s two pit bulls after they got into his chicken coop, then charged at him here/Tri-City Herald.

4. Blogosphere: This is a gaffe?/Dogwalk Musings; Of slimeballs and tax rebates/Steve Smith, News Is A Conversation; Time for Idaho Legislature to get to work? Now, that’s a concept/Kevin Richert, Statesman; Dead bills haunt the Internet/Rich Roesler, Eye On Olympia; and Wolf battle to heat up/Rocky Barker, Statesman.

5. IMHO: Dave Niehaus gets hall of fame call/Steve Kelley, Seattle Times; Shades of terror/Robert Herold, Inlander; Caught between Barack and a hard place/Frank Mieli, Daily Inter Lake; High school wheeler-dealer/Ed Symkus, Inlander; and In defense of the child-man/Holly Bowen, UI Argonaut.

6. News Roundup: Spokane’s top attorney Craven to step down/SR; Idaho kills Sudan divestment bill/SR; Pyschologist: Serial shooting suspect not competent to stand trial/Statesman; Crapo says Craig deserves to pursue legal options/KTVB; and Man says he didn’t torture woman 112 times/KTVB.

Orbusmax Special: Newborn found in toilet, mother questioned here.

HBO’s AM Headlines — 2/20/08

Kathy Plonka/SR File Photo

“I’m just glad they caught the guy,” said Tom Capone, as he walked through a shell of what used to be Capone’s Pub and Grill in Post Falls, Idaho on Sept. 5, 2007. His establishment was burned in an arson fire on July 25, 2007. See Item No. 2.

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, SR

*Paddy’s, Paddy’s Too get new owner: Previous owner faces felony arson charges/Rick Thomas, Coeur d’Alene Press — Rich Hanlon, the previous owner who allegedly set fire to Capone’s/Post Falls, probably wasn’t in a position to dicker.

*Russell to spend 14-year sentence in Aberdeen prison/Lindsay Chamberlain, KREM2 — Good riddance.

*WSU student victim of possible hate crime/Hayley Guenthner, UI Argonaut — Small-minded people are never far away.

*Rand Lewis withdraws from congressional race: Endorses Larry Grant/Betsy Russell, SR Eye On Boise — Who?

*Views mixed on Bonner County detention center expansions/Keith Kinnaird, Bonner County Daily Bee — Officials always want something like this because they know jail facilities provide jobs. But constituents resist because they know jail facilities attract bad elements. So the tug of war goes on.

Question: Will the new Paddy’s owner have trouble attracting customers as a result of the previous owner’s notoriety?

10 Straight: Obama Steamrolls Clinton In Hawaii

Daily Kos: Breaking down Obama surge

U.S. Sen. Barack Obama, who was born and raised in Hawai’i, won the state’s Democratic presidential caucus in a landslide yesterday. Obama had 28,347 votes, or 76 percent, to U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton’s 8,835 votes, or 24 percent, with 100 percent of the precincts reporting/Hawaii Advertiser. More here

Spokane: Convicted Scammer Hired To Sell Loans

Item: Convicted scam figure hired to sell loans to seniors/Bill Morlin, Spokesman-Review

More Info: Michael Duane Smith has worked as a “reverse mortgage planner” for Golf Savings, a subsidiary of Spokane-based Sterling Savings, according to a brochure touting the loans, which are geared toward older homeowners. “He no longer works here,” Sterling spokeswoman Jennifer Lutz said Tuesday. She and other senior officials with Sterling and Golf declined to answer other questions, including why a felon would be working for a lending institution.

Question: What do you think of Sterling Savings hiring this guy?

Hindu: Obama’s Perfect Lightweight For People Mag Crowd

Hindu: Would love to hear an actual policy clarified from Obama, other than complete retreat in Iraq. His followers mumble drunkly about universal healthcare when cornered. He’s too smart to talk specifics since he’s the most liberal senator on record in the short time he’s been in office. As a republican I love him as the dem candidate. He is the perfect lightweight for the People Magazine crowd. That never lasts.

JimmyMAC: Obama’s message is a singular one to me and I am trying to be bi partisan on this: bring home the troops. Other than that, the only thing I am certain of for policy changes would be tax increases, of which tax increases on small business scares me. More here

Bob: Obama Unlimited Will Railroad McCain

Bob: McCain is the kind of political warhack that if he steps across party lines I’d check to see if he took anything he wasn’t supposed to when he went back. Seriously, you ‘pubs thought the Dole squirrel smear on the freeway after being run over by the Clinton Express was icky and distasteful? Wait until you see what happens when you set a McCain 2008 penny on a train track and the Obama Unlimited runs over him. A nation’s pent up anger and disgust at 8 years of inane, deadly, and evil government by the GOP is about to be unleashed. McCain will wish he was back in the Hanoi Hilton eating mice and picking rice grains out of the dirt.

DFO: Bob, I’ll see your “8 years of inane, deadly, and evil government by the GOP” and raise you another 8 years of scandal, Arkansas mobsters, and sex in the Oral Office.” Sixteen years. Not eight. There’s pent up anger on both sides re: the performance of the last two, two-term presidents. Are you missing the very obvious fact that the Clinton 2008 penny is the one on the tracks during this current winter of our discontent?

Eye Opener: Miss Ukraine Lika Roman Defends Purity

Rajah Bose/Spokesman-Review

A crowd of young girls wait their turn to talk with Miss Ukraine 2007, Lika Roman, at Valley Assembly of God Church in Spokane Valley, Wash. Tuesday. She is touring the country to tell how she became successfull while staying pure. She told the crowd that they should celebrate their inner beauty first.

Item: Miss Ukraine Lika Roman brings message of faith to Spokane Valley/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR

Quote: Roman, 22, said she’s a virgin and doesn’t believe in dating. But she does believe in true love. “What I do is I ask God what he thinks about that guy, because he knows a lot better,” she said. “I truly live a genuine Christian life.”

Schedule: Roman will … speak Friday at 7 p.m. at the Center of Life church, 13328 E. Wellesley, and Saturday at 7 p.m. at God’s Embassy Church, 1012 S. Freya.

Question: Is Miss Ukraine’s message of personal purity old-fashioned in an era when many have a casual attitude toward sex?

Parting Shot — 2/18/08

Kyle Mills/Lewiston Tribune, AP

Jazz pianist Jim Martinez plays a piece by Mozart while laying down at Highland Elementary Tuesday in Clarkston, Wash.

JBelle’s HBO Blogfest ‘08 Awards

Best Eyes - Toad
Best Skin-Taryn
Best Giggle-Katrina
Best Costume Jewelry-MamaJD
Best Sweetness-Stickman
Best Hands-Doug Clark
Best Babeness-Meghann Cuniff

More here

Question: Was she or wasn’t she?

HBO’s Best of the Friends’ Blogs — 2/18/08

Brent Andrews/Chronic Discontent Photo

HBO’s Blogfest ‘08 didn’t entirely take over Capone’s Saturday.

I am always surprised by the warm welcome I get from the Huckleberries Online community. I’m something of a flamer at HBO weilding a torch whenever the war on drugs comes up. But folks on the other side of the issue seem to believe in a person’s right to say what he thinks, on Dave Oliveria’s sensational blog. When we get together, as we have for these past two years, it’s like my friend Otis G. Experience says: “It’s all good.” Some of the people I like best on the blog are pretty much my political polar opposites, from what I’ve gathered. But talking to people with different views helps one to see the humanity of the other side. We’re just talking about people who care - one way or another. And that’s good for America/Brent Andrews, Chronic Discontent. More here

*Fest of blogginess and all that/Toadman
*Good fences make good neighbors/Inland Empire Girl
*Blizzard conditions I tell ya/Marmitetoasty
*It’s about bloody time Bush discovered Darfur/Wayward Episcopalian

DFO’s Animals: 2-Faced Kitten

Renee Cook’s Persian-mix cat takes a closeup look at her offspring, a two faced kitten born overnight today at Cook’s home in Amarillo, Texas. Cook says the kitten purrs, breathes and eats fine. (AP Photo/AmarilloGlobe-News, Michael Schumacher)

Kos: Obama Will Win Hawaii, Watch Wisconsin

Obama should win HI; he’s the hometown boy, the only serious candidate for President born and raised in Hawaii, at least since it became a state. [Trivia: Obama’s Senate colleague Daniel Inouye was elected to Represent Hawaii in Congress two years before Obama was born.] He should win it solidly. So HI will only be a story if Clinton comes close or wins. Whatever story that comes out of tonight, other than the delegate tallies, will therefore most likely come out of Wisconsin/Daily Kos. More here

Related: reports the deadline for Washington primary ballots is tonight (and related stories) here

BC Undersheriff Headed To Arizona

Undersheriff Charlie Dennis will leave Bonner County in early April to being his new job as police chief of Page, Ariz. Dennis has served as undersheriff for three years.

Vox Box: Can You Use A Semicolon?

I stumbled across this fun bit about the semi-colon in the New York Times today, including: “One of the school system’s most notorious graduates, David Berkowitz, the Son of Sam serial killer who taunted police and the press with rambling handwritten notes, was, as the columnist Jimmy Breslin wrote, the only murderer he ever encountered who could wield a semicolon just as well as a revolver. (Mr. Berkowitz, by the way, is now serving an even longer sentence.)”/Erin Daniels, Vox Box.

Question: Can you properly use a semi-colon? (Originally posted at Vox Box)

Boise: JFAC Begins Swinging Budget Ax

The budget-cutting has begun. This morning, the Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee set a budget for the Idaho State Police for next year that not only leaves out the $9 million-plus fund shift Gov. Butch Otter wanted in order to generate more money for transportation. It also cuts out the governor’s proposal to add six new forensics staffers, at a cost of $637,000, and trims a planned $715,700 investment in mobile data computers by half to $357,900. The joint committee deadlocked 10-10 on a motion to at least add back in half of the new forensics staffers, at a cost of $318,500. Then, the more parsimonious budget passed on a 12-8 vote/Betsy Russell, SR Eye On Boise. More here

Eye On Boise roundup: Transportation boost first on chopping block; ‘How could we vote against milk?’; And the next cut is …; Otter’s not giving up yet; and Fuel tax pacts clear next-to-last hurdle.

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 2/18/08

University of Wyoming theatre and dance students perform a vertical dance while suspended by a sling and pulley combination at the Arts & Sciences building Monday in Laramie, Wyo. (AP Photo/Laramie Boomerang, Andy Carpenean)

Spotlight: Seattle broadcaster Dave Niehaus elected to Hall of Fame here.

1. Top INorthwest: Gene Doyle’s never seen a snapping shrimp, but he’s sure heard plenty. He’s heard whales, too, and dolphins, and “all kinds of what we call ‘biologicals.’” So said the Kalispell, Mont., landlubber will be named commander of the USS Alexandria Friday here/Missoulian.

2. Top Idaho: Burger King will reimburse a Meridian couple - after the fast food chain charged them thousands of dollars for a meal. Bryan Sampson’s wife was charged $2,243.00 for a meal that should have cost $22.43 here/KTVB.

3. Top Spokane: Today is the final day voters can cast ballots in Washington’s presidential primary. In most of the state, that means they either have to mail a ballot so it’s postmarked by this evening, or take it to a drop-off location by 8 p.m. here/Jim Camden, SR Spin Control 2.0.

4. Blogosphere: Idaho’s second class Democratic delegates/Adam’s Blog; Couple of evil white guys sittin’ around talkin’/TUBOB; Guess who’s coming to dinner/Fort Boise; Andrus is right: This must cease/Red State Rebels; and The Idahoan isn’t/Mountain Goat Report.

5. IMHO: ‘Hot Rod Lincoln’ singer dies in Spokane/Doug Clark, SR; It takes a westerner/Joan McCarter, New West; God provides love new boyfriends can’t/Erin Dienst, WSU Evergreen; Clinton determined to win by hook, by crook/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune; and Idaho Legislature wrong to dismiss pre-K study bill/Idaho Statesman.

6. News Roundup: Meteor seen across Pacific Northwest/AP; Conditions favorable to see total eclipse/Mike Prager, SR; Police search for meteor landing/KTVB; Lawyer accused of cyberstalking/Seattle PI; and Nampan admits setting younger brother on fire/KTVB.

Orbusmax Special: Poachers suspected of attacking deer with cars here.

Craig Files ‘Motion For Enlarged Brief’

In Idaho Sen. Larry Craig’s continuing court fight to withdraw his guilty plea in an airport restroom-sex sting in Minnesota, a new motion has been filed today by the prosecution. It’s a “motion for enlarged brief,” which in this case means the respondents want to file a brief to the Minnesota Court of Appeals exceeding the current length limit of 15,500 words/Betsy Russell, SR Eye On Boise. More here

DFO: What a delightfully unfortunate name for the legal motion.

News Conversation: CDA Press Drops TV Guide

I learned today that the Coeur d’Alene Press has dropped its weekly TV guide from the Friday paper. This is not a singular or even unusual decision. As newspapers reposition for the future, many are rethinking traditional weekly TV sections (and daily stock listings, too) on the assumption that most people now get that type of data (as opposed to journalism) from the web. That may be largely true, but it certainly isn’t true of our older readers who also tend to be those who want the TV guides/Steve Smith. News Is A Conversation. More here

Question: Do you use the Sunday or daily TV listings? If not, where do you get your TV guide information?

DFO’s Animals: Devil Toad

Dan Klores Communications rendering

This undated handout artist rendering provided by Dan Klores Communications shows a Beelzebufo ampinga facing off against the largest known living Malagasy frog, Mantydactylus ampinga. A full -length pencil provide size perspective. A frog the size of a bowling ball, with heavy armor and teeth, lived among dinosaurs millions of years ago. Story here

Related: Scientists discover armored frogzilla fossil/Thuy Nguyen, Daily Briefing

Washington Debates Electoral Vote Plan

Item: Washington lawmakers debate electoral vote plan/Richard Roesler, Spokesman-Review

More Info: Lawmakers clashed today over a plan to award all of Washington’s electoral votes to the presidential candidate who wins the nationwide popular vote. Proponents say it’s a way of doing away with the winner-take-all Electoral College system under which someone – such as Al Gore in 2000 – can win more total votes yet still lose the election.

Question: What do you think of this plan?

Fidel Castro: Dictator Resigns After 49 Years

Item: Castro resigns presidency after 49 years/Associated Press

More Info: An ailing, 81-year-old Fidel Castro resigned as Cuba’s president today after nearly a half-century in power, saying he will not accept a new term when parliament meets Sunday. (SR Online has a complete package of sidebars to this story.)

Question: What will become of Cuba now?

TUBOB: Oh Goodie, Goodie, A Pothole Blog

re: Getting There: Local Agencies Launch Blogs

I can only scarcely imagine the excitement a pothole blog could generate for the local community. Perhaps, they could rate the potholes on severity and come up with a cute little graphic for it, along with excited new reports of potholes and a weekly contest for Best Reader Submitted Pothole and maybe even a Pothole Cutline Contest where a photo of a pothole is shown and the readers come up with cutlines “You broke my axle then you broke my heart!” and maybe recipes for best snack cookies to eat while waiting for your car’s front end to be realigned from all the pothole damage. This could be so huge, even bigger than the CDA Press blogs. Sample pothole blog: Who Wouldn’t Want to Escape Lucifer’s Emergent Potholes of Disaster?/TUBOB.

Eye Opener: ‘Hot Rod Lincoln’ Singer Ryan Dies In Spokane

Singer/songwriter Charlie Ryan has died in Spokane at age 92.

When a cowboy dies (and I’m talking about real-deal cowboys, here) it’s customary to paint a romanticized picture of the deceased cowpoke riding slowly off into the sunset astride a cherished pony. Not Charlie Ryan. In my mind he’s sitting behind the wheel of a souped-up, candy apple red Lincoln-powered Model A. There’s a white Stetson covering his head and a grin on his face. He’s got the pedal to the metal, too, burnin’ rubber all the way to those Pearly Gates. That’s the way Charlie would have us remember him, too. The soft-spoken Spokane man who gave the world one of the best car songs ever written – “Hot Rod Lincoln” – passed away peacefully Saturday after a long struggle with heart failure/Doug Clark, Spokesman-Review. More here

Hear “Hot Rod Lincoln”

Question: Which Golden Oldie hot rod song is your favorite?

Wild Card/Monday — 2/18/08

I continue to be amazed at the evolvement of Huckleberries Online and the local blog community. HBO Blogfest ‘08 is another example of something happenin’ different here. A wonderful mix of personalities and pseudonyms. It didn’t start out that way. But I’m delighted that we’ve gotten to a place where we can set aside ideologies, religious doctrine, politics, disparate backgrounds, etc., to enjoy one another’s company. Blogfest ‘08 was a special time. I’d like to see HBO and the SR sponsor a Dougfest (Doug Clark & Trailer Park Girls) this summer. It might happen. Who knows? HBO works because there’s no agenda or much organization. Sorta like the Grateful Dead. If I don’t screw things up at HBO Central, we’ll get together for another blogfest about this time next year. Now, for your Wild Card …

Not Canned Speech, Not Spin … It’s Real

I was thinking about the folks who attended blog fest. The exchanges between many of them have been legend. Yet here they were being photographed together, tipping a brew together, chatting about who knows what - all together. They’ll all go at it again to be sure. … This is a different type of information than one would get from the newspaper. It’s not objective reporting; sometimes it’s anything but factual. Sometimes the facts stare us in the face and for what ever reason we don’t recognize them, or don’t want to. What it is, is energetic discourse. It’s what people are thinking as they think it - no matter who they may be. It isn’t a canned speech. It isn’t “spin”. It’s real/Dogwalk Musings. More here

APhoto of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 2/18/08

Baylor head coach Kim Mulkey reacts to a call by the referee in the second half of a college basketball game against Oklahoma, Sunday, in Waco, Texas. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Jerry Larson)

Top Cutlines

1. Somehow, the Hokey Pokey went all wrong for Kim/A Token D.

2. Mulkey’s instictive “hook ‘em horns” sign gives her away as a University of Texas infiltrator. Moments later, she was escorted off of Baylor’s campus/LynnS.

3. In objecting to a call against her team, Coach Mulkey sings the Nancy Sinatra song “these boots are goin a’ walk all over you/Dick Haugen.

HM: Cis

My 2 Cents: Where Do We Go From Here?

I’ve been in one of those where-do-we-go-from-here mind-sets for the last several weeks. But I put off thinking about the direction of Huckleberries Online until after HBO Blogfest ‘08. HBO has always been an evolving blog. It began as an online means to support Dubya’s re-election bid in 2004 — misguided as that now seems — and has become a comfortable gathering place for a wide range of local cyberspace personalities. In between, we’ve had several major hiccups, including the exodus of the uberconservatives about a year ago and the enforcement of civility rules last fall. People have come and gone. And HBO continues. I constantly consider changes and tweaks. I’ve thought about dropping Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest again because it’s such a time killer. It steals my lunch hour. Is it something you want? Is there something I’m not featuring that you’d like to see here. Should I drop in a post or two per day about Spokane — for the readers from Ron Paul Country? Your input is always valued.

Question: Would you like to see Huckleberries Online do anything differently?

Stunner: 1 In 4 Felony Suspects Let Go

Item: Spokane County report: Paperwork often missing/Jody Lawrence-Turner, Spokesman-Review

More Info: More than one in four suspected felons booked into Spokane County Jail are let go without formal charges filed because necessary paperwork is missing, a new report shows. “I’m not sure if it’s a law enforcement problem or a prosecutorial decision,” said Utah-based consultant David Bennett, who discovered numerous problems within Spokane County’s criminal justice system as part of a review ordered by county commissioners and Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich.

Question (for our Spokane delegation): Do you feel safe?

VirginiaDL: Moms Who Want To Save Earth

I think I want to be an eco-mom. A friend passed along this recent New York Times article about “eco-moms” – mothers whose “ever-expanding ‘to do’ list includes preparing waste-free school lunches; lobbying for green building codes; transforming oneself into a ‘locovore,’ eating locally grown food; and remembering not to idle the car when picking up children from school (if one must drive).” At first glance, the story made me feel guilty. Life is often overwhelming enough with little kids that I don’t know if I have the energy to worry about non-toxic cleaners or the impact of all the disposable diapers that come out of our household. But after some reflection, I gradually found inspiration from these eco-moms/Virginia de Leon, Parents Council. More here

Question: As a parent, do you have “eco-mom” discussions with friends (ie. Disposable vs. cloth, plastic or wooden toys, etc.)? What have you learned from these conversations? How do you teach your kids about the environment?

HBO @ Noon: Burger King Charges Couple $2243

A meal at a Boise Burger King cost one couple way more than they expected – thousands of dollars more. Bryan Sampson’s wife picked up food for the family Saturday – totaling $22.43. But a whopper of a mistake left the couple’s account overdrawn. A clerk at the Burger King charged them $2,243.00 – with the decimal point in the wrong spot! Bryan said he didn’t notice the charge until Sunday – but now the mistake is causing big trouble for the family’s finances. “My bank account now is overdrawn $473, so anything that might come through at midnight is gonna be charged a $35 fee,” Sampson said. “I know there’s 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 charges they’re gonna charge me for at $35 bucks a pop/KTVB. More here

Question: Have you ever had a business or bank mess up the amount of purchase on a debit or credit card transaction?

TUBOB’s Cento: Someone Who Cares

A Cento (latin for stitched together) is a poetic form where you take lines from other poems and form a new one. I used titles from CDA Press blogs to write these two centos/TUBOB.

Just me talkin’
going through the midlife thing
Have a heart
I am sorry the milk was rotten
Who wouldn’t want to escape Lucifer’s emergent world government and church!
Here in Idaho
A world away
Expect the unexpected!

Bob/The Unbearable Bobness Of Being
(click on “extended entry” for 2nd cento)

HBO Poll: Monday, Monday, Can’t Trust That Day

Vince Grippi/Sportslink launches into his Monday blog post with the headline: “Like Garfield, I Hate Mondays.” What do you think of Mondays?

1. Up and at ‘em
2. Just another day of the week
3. Why can’t I have off Presidents’ Day, too?
4. How long has it been since I called in sick on Monday
5. I’m retired! Every day is a Saturday
6. Rats! Another week working for the man
7. Other

Trib: Nonini’s Thin Skin Shows

When the facts are on your side, the lawyers’ advice goes, pound on the facts. When the law is on your side, pound on the law. When neither is on your side, pound on the table. Idaho legislator Bob Nonini pounded on the table last week after being on the receiving end of two critical editorials from these pages. In a Turnabout response published Tuesday, Rep. Nonini, R-Coeur d’Alene, did not charge that we had misrepresented the facts about his legislative activities. Neither did he dispute the arguments of the editorials in question. Instead, he complained that we had not given him the courtesy of an advance call or e-mail/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune. More here

Related: These contests usually have no winners/DFO, SR’s Handle Extra

Question: Should Nonini have complained in writing about critical editorials? Or should he have grinned and beared it?

Blogfest ‘08 Afterglow

Rocket’s Brain Photo

DFO uses new Stickman stick to deal with party crasher at HBO Blogfest ‘08 Saturday at Capone’s.

In this circumstance the whole is definitely the sum of its parts. And what wonderfully diverse parts they are. It’s like a huge extended family that gets together once a year for a reunion. And like a family, the personalities vary and there are squabbles. Oh, yeah. And the dialog reflects all this throughout the year. We who participate worry, get angry, walk away, come back - or not, laugh, cry and agonize. Just like family/Dogwalk Musings. More (with photos) here

More Blogfest ‘08 in photos here, commentary here

DFO: After HBO Blogfest ‘08, Doug Clark & I discussed the possiblity of a HBO/SR sponsored concert by his band, “Trailer Park Girls,” in Coeur d’Alene this spring. He’s willing to do it. Stay tuned.

Question: Favorite U.S. President

The following offices and services will be affected by the Presidents Day holiday Monday:
•In Kootenai County, all city, county, state and federal offices are closed.
•In Spokane County, county and City of Spokane Valley offices are closed, but City of Spokane offices are open. Parking meters don’t have to be plugged.
•Garbage pickup isn’t affected.
•Post offices are closed.
•State-controlled liquor stores are closed in Washington, open in Idaho.
•Most banks will be closed. Check with individual branches for hours of operation.

Question: Who is your favorite president of all time?

CDA Press: Canadians Are Comin’, Canadians Are Comin’

Because their economic conditions are so ideal right now, Canadians can purchase a new car in Kootenai County and save thousands of dollars, even after paying a 5 percent tax at the border. Canadians in the market for a second home have far more buying power than they did even six months ago. And it isn’t just the big purchases that are beginning to happen. During a recent sale at a local department store, one woman purchasing armloads of clothing told the sales clerk she’d driven down from Canada. A man waiting to make his purchase said he, too, was from Canada. Of a dozen or so people within earshot, several others said they were Canadians taking advantage of their strong dollar and the store’s sale, with items up to 70 percent off/Coeur d’Alene Press. More here

Question: How much do you know about Canada?

Eye Opener: 3 Of 4 Idaho Superdelegates Back Obama

How many Democratic super-delegates does Idaho have? Four. Party members will choose a fifth superdelegate at the state Democratic convention in early June in Boise. Who are they? Jeanne Buell, Worley, state chairwoman; Grant Burgoyne, Boise, national committeeman; Gail Bray, Boise, national committeewoman; R. Keith Roark, Hailey, party state chairman. Who are they supporting? All support Sen. Barack Obama, except for Keith Roark, party state chairman, who is uncommitted/Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Would you be upset if Obama wins the majority of states and votes in caucuses and primaries, but superdelegates help Hillary Clinton win the nomination?

Rocket’s Brain: Blogfest ‘08 Slide Show

Rocket’s Brain Trust Slide Show

*Family Phil’s video and roll call of attendees here
*Cis has a bunch of good photos and commentary here
*S&S Herb’s photos here
*ThomG’s slide show here
*Stickman’s commentary about the Blogfest here

Blogfest ‘08 Wild Card thread

TUBOB Softens, Regrets Not Being Handcuffed By Christie

It’s a weird thing when the curtain of internet anonymity is opened and the sunrays of faces, personalities, feelings, expressions and indeed, humanity, pour in and illuminate our living rooms and offices and dens with such bright lights of humanity one can hardly bear to blink or flip the switch off to surround oneself in darkness. Nah. I can’t rip on folks anymore. Even the pros. I’m embracing a new path. A path to light and warmth and machine guns loaded with Hersheys Kisses and rose flowers and ice cream cones. My razor sharp edge is dull now. I am but a butter knife. You all are but a tub of sweet cream butter. Except Sgt. Christie who kept glancing at me like she wanted to pistol whip me and hogtie me and read me my rights right before I passed out and woke up 2 hours later in the tank. Sigh ;)TUBOB

Family Phil Shoots Blogfest ‘08

Spazz & Digger

JeanC’s Cat House & Shooting Gallery reps

TUBOB & Family Phil

Kendramama (Teacher’s Pet 2007)

DFO & Doug Clark (before Doug got pink-slipped by the SR for writing Sunday morning’s column).

Doug Clark singing the original “Duane B. Hagadone Blues”

Toadman, Tadpole & Stickman

CHS Girls Win State Basketball Title

Item: CdA girls break through: Viking girls basketball win the state championship that had eluded it the past two years/Greg Lee, Spokesman-Review Sportslink

More Info: Suffice to say, it was the charm. It may have taken a third try, but the Coeur d’Alene High girls basketball team finally broke through Saturday evening. The second-ranked Vikings were too much for Vallivue, clipping the Falcons 61-47 in the State 5A championship game before an estimated crowd of 2,500 at the Idaho Center. After back-to-back state runner-up finishes, the Vikings finished the deal Saturday.

DFO: State championships are hard to come by. The Coeur d’Alene High girls deserve all the kudos they can get for bringing one to North Idaho after two straight second-place finishes.

APhoto of the Day — 2/16/06

Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., is handed a baby as she enters a campaign stop at the Todaro’s Party Center for the Summit County Democratic Party meeting in Akron, Ohio, Friday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

M’s Announcer Niehaus Likes 2008 Seattle M’s

“(Mariners’ announce Dave Niehaus) team has acquired pitchers Erik Bedard and Carlos Silva and a new right fielder in Brad Wilkerson. Want to take a guess if Niehaus is fired up about the Mariners’ chances? You’re right, he is. ‘I’m the most excited I’ve been since ‘96,’ he said. ‘Remember when ‘95 was over, when you couldn’t wait to get started again?’ I kidded him about being excited this time of year every year, even during the bad Mariners years, of which there were many. ‘For crying out loud, talk to me in September when we’re 10 games out,’ Niehaus said. ‘But I don’t think that will happen. This (Bedard trade) has given us a chance to be competitive right down to the last day’”/Jim Moore/Seattle PI. More here

Question: Who’s your favorite baseball announcer of all time?

Smith-Kennedy: Boyhood Hero Clemens Lied

Roger Clemens was my boyhood hero (and still is today even though Ia m 26 and a Die hard red sox fan) When I was growing up he stood for everything clean and pure and made me think that with dedication and hard work i too could be like Doug Mirabelli and be The Rockets’ Personal catcher. I mean my dogs name is “Rocket” To see him go down like this is painful, because to me he is the reason i breathed, ate, slept, and drempt about baseball. (Except for his stints with the yankees)
But the more and more i watch his actions and statements - it becomes clear…. he is lying, about what? I dont know, but it just appears he is lying about something/Smith Kennedy

Question: Has any of your sports heroes been involved in a scandal?

TUBOB: I’m Not Like My Online Persona

The worst it ever got for me was this woman I was seeing one summer, during the first year of blogging, who grew frustrated one night because I wasn’t like my blog. Which is sort of a weirdly disconcerting experience. But I type big because I get the hugest kick stirring up the crap and watching how people respond and am endlessly amused by how some stupid sentences by some faceless commenter name can cause such distress and discord. It’s very towheaded 9 year old boy looking under a magnifying glass at a caterpillar on the grass then catching the sunrays through the glass and even though the little angel on his shoulder is telling him NO THAT’S MEAN he just can’t resist frying that poor ‘pillar. But what the heck, it’s a cheap hobby. ;)/TUBOB

Question: How much different are you online than in person?

TGIF Wild Card — 2/15/08

We’re at HBO Blogfest ‘08 Day Minus 1. I’ve told Justin to put the garlic pizza back into the rotation and mebbe put some candles into one of the pizzas for Councilman MikeK’s birthday on Sunday. Then, it might not be a good idea to have lit candles in the middle of a group of unlit HBOers. Mebbe Doug Clark can sing MikeK “Happy Birthday” but not like Marilyn Monroe sang it for JFK. Gotta draw a line somewhere. Anyway, this is HBO’s last day as a 3-year-old. Tomorrow is the actual anniversary date of the blog. Dunno how old 4 is in blog time. But it seems like an awfully long time. Now, for your Wild Card …

Vox Box: Should Schools Search Lockers?

“I think most already know that it is legal for school officials to do locker searches,” posts Erin Daniels/Vox Box. “They have to have probable cause, but they can search. But is is fair? I have a colleague whose daughter is doing a research paper on the topic and asked if I would survey you all what you think.”

QUESTION: Do you think schools should be required to have a warrant to search your locker? Why or why not?

APhoto of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 2/15/08

Friends Beverly Rinehart, left, Sheila Smith, center, and Donna Puls laugh with a stand-in for Smith’s husband, Bob, the blow-up version, Thursday at Grove City United Methodist Church in Grove City, Ohio. Bob Smith, Sheila’s husband of 34 years, was out of town on business during a recommitment ceremony for several couples, so Sheila’s friends surprised her with the doll. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines

1. In good times and bad/In sickness and in health/’Till deflation do you part — Nic.

2. Later that night Shelia discovered that blow-up Bob was better at conversation– and a lot of other things, than real Bob — CindyH.

3. Don’t worry, Idaho is one of only three states where this is legal — Transplanted Texan.

HM: Idaho Escapee

HBO’s 1st Post: ‘Fasten Your Seatbelts’

The following post launched this blog on Feb. 16, 2004:

For those who have developed a taste for Huckleberries, Hot Potatoes and other basic food groups in North Idaho, I’m taking it to the next level today … by moving on up to blogging. If you don’t know what that means, sound it out: blog, bah-log, Web log. In other words, a blog is a combination Web diary/column/train-of-consciousness thing.

NI Skinny: They Shoot Wolves, Don’t They?

Ralph Bartholdt of St. Maries is shown in 1989 with a Br’er Wolf who didn’t get away. Dead or alive, Ralph sez in his latest post on The Skinny On North Idaho, you’ll remember close encounters with wolves here.

Question: Have you ever seen a wolf, dead or alive, in the wild?

New West: Craig’s Idaho Reaction Roundup

Is it the simple solidarity of silence, or are Idaho Republican leaders relying on story fatigue to allow them to get away with saying nothing about Larry Craig’s latest? The silence was predictable, but outrage finally boiled over among state Democratic candidates and leaders Thursday after a Senate Ethics committee rebuked Larry Craig for his behavior after he was caught in an airport bathroom sex sting, and Republican leaders were silent. “It’s now time for Idaho’s Republican Party leaders to make their position known: Are they going to support the people of Idaho, or are they going to support the tawdry self interests of Larry Craig?” asked Democratic party chair Keith Roark in a press release/Jill Kuraitis, New West Boise. New West links to what other Idahoans including HBOers are saying.

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 2/15/08

A white-tailed jack rabbit is shown in this an undated photo provided by the Wildlife Conservation Society. Jack rabbits, found throughout much of the West, has disappeared from the Yellowstone area, although the reason why remains a mystery, a new study concludes. Story here

1. Jurors can consider incriminating statements convicted murderer Joseph Duncan made to FBI agents as they decide whether he should be executed for his crimes, a federal judge has ruled here/Spokesman-Review.

2. Elton John, who was originally scheduled to perform on the Saturday of Mom’s Weekend at Beasley Coliseum, will perform a second show the following day at 7 p.m. April 13 here/WSU Evergreen.

3. New West: “Is it the simple solidarity of silence, or are Idaho Republican leaders relying on story fatigue to allow them to get away with saying nothing about Larry Craig’s latest?” Click here.

4. SR Blogs: Johnny Depp “sighting” dominates newsroom huddle/Thuy Nguyen, Daily Briefing; Northern Illinois campus shooting coverage/Gary Graham, News Diary; Speaker Chopp’s choice: Obama/Rich Roesler, Eye On Olympia; Seeking more tolerance/Out on the Town; and Out To Lunch: The scratch edition/Tom Bowers.

5. IMHO: Jorgenson had right idea, not enough savvy/Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman; Gun education/T.J. Tranchell, UI Argonaut; Craig goes from pretend senator to pariah/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune; Northern adjudication forges on/Randy Stapilus, Ridenbaugh Press; and Yet another embarrassment for Sen. Craig/Idaho Statesman.

6. News Roundup: 3 men allege past abuse at Morning Star/SR; Snowflakes may fall again/SR; Ex-Cantwell aide pleads guilty to child porn charge/KOMO4; BASE jumpers: media pays too much attention to fatalities/Twin Falls Times-News; and Small Idaho town loses 100 jobs/Twin Falls Times-News.

Orbusmax Special: Gregoire, Rossi in dead heat in poll here.

HBO @ Noon: Blogfest Do’s & Don’ts

As you may have noticed from MamaJD’s post at the start of today’s threads, some first-time blogfester’s are somewhat anxious about attending Saturday’s annual event. I was about to compile a list of do’s and don’ts, such as: Don’t arrive with a bag over your head, but tinfoil hats are appropriate. But I decided to allow you blogfest veterans provide your do’s and don’ts.

Question: What should you do or not do at Blogfest ‘08?

JoeB: SR Looking For A Few Good Monitors

I know quite a few of you from my days at The Press and also as a longtime blog reader/occasional poster. Now I’m working in the Spokesman’s marketing department. I’m planning to be at Capone’s Saturday, and also will be requesting help from many of our fine N. Idaho bloggers — we need to hire a group of online moderators for some upcoming specialty Web sites we’re creating this year. Look for me somewhere near the pizza and I’ll tell you more/Joe Butler, Spokesman-Review

HBO’s AM Headlines — 2/15/08

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, Spokesman-Review

*Vikings stop No. 1: CdA, Post Falls move to semifinals/Greg Lee, Spokesman-Review — ‘Twould be cool if the two North Idaho teams met in a rematch for the state title.

*Columbine victim’s brother tells Sandpoint High students to embrace compassion/Marlisa Keyes, Bonner County Daily Bee — Appropriate message on a day when the nation is reeling from another nut gone while on the Northern Illinois campus.

*Prosecutor: Post Falls shooting justified/Brian Walker & Marc Stewart, Coeur d’Alene Press — Good call.

*Spirit Lake teens tune into anti-meth campaign/Erica F. Curless, Spokesman-Review — Shhh. Don’t tell ThomG that Idaho Meth Project exec Megan Ronk is married to former Idaho Repub exec Jason Ronk. You know how he gets about Jason.

*Idaho employees to get 3 percent raises/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise — Still beats what a lot of people in the private sector have been getting.

SteveS: Reflections On A Newspaper Career

I miss that old Register-Guard newsroom. I miss the smoke. I miss the black ink that covered nearly every surface, the smell of rubber cement and the relentless cacophony of sound. I miss typewriters, and carbon paper and phones with dials. I miss real wire machines with bells that rung when a really big story broke. I miss the swearing and the profane practical jokes that would probably get us arrested today. I’d go back in a heartbeat. Except there never is a going back. All we can do is move forward/Steve Smith, News Is A Conversation. More here

DFO: I began my newspapering in 1970, three years before Steve (because I was working full-time at the local daily while attending college full time). Therefore, I experienced the same changes that Steve did. If you want to know what newspapering was like over the last four decades, his News Is A Conversation post above is a must read.

KevinR: Crapo Wait-See On Craig Slap

To follow up on one of my Thursday blog posts, Sen. Mike Crapo did talk briefly to KBOI radio Thursday morning about the Senate Ethics Committee report. In an interview with KBOI’s Ken Weaver, Crapo said he felt the Ethics Committee’s reprimand was premature, and said Sen. Larry Craig should be able to pursue his legal defense “to its fullest extent” before anybody passes judgment. “I think the Ethics Committee should have waited,” he said. Crapo, however, is also taking a wait-and-see approach to the Ethics Committee, wondering if this is the committee’s final word on the case/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here

Question: Has your opinion of the rest of the Idaho delegation and state elected officials lowered as a result of their silence about Larry Craig’s ongoing scandal?

MamaJD: Blogfest ‘08 Apprehensions

I’m going to BlogFest on Saturday, will you come with me, she said. Uggggghhhhh - the personal invite from one of my favorite friends. So now on Saturday, I am going to BlogFest 08, an event hosted by the Spokesman Review for the Huckleberries Online crowd. I successfully avoided BlogFest 07 because I was out of state at the time. Or maybe I got outta Dodge in order to avoid BlogFest 07. I can no longer remember the exact order of how I pulled it off last year. Anyhoo - I am excited. I get to see some of the people I have commented with for a while now. There are key figures in this little community I have woven into my daily life that I would like to laugh with in person over a slice of garlic pizza. It’s time. On the other hand, I am a little apprehensive/MamaJD. See why MamaJD is apprehensive about Blogfest ‘08

Question: Do you have apprehensions about HBO Blogfest ‘08?

Hagadone Reapplies For Casco Bay Dock

Item: Hagadone reapplies for dock, minus helipad/Erica Curless, Spokesman-Review

More Info: Coeur d’Alene businessman Duane Hagadone has scrapped plans for a floating helipad outside his Casco Bay home on Lake Coeur d’Alene. But he is asking the state to reconsider his plans for a new commercial dock – one slightly shorter than the 200-foot dock the state rejected in January. … Hagadone’s new proposal, for a 177-foot dock, would still allow him to moor two 100-foot-long boats used to transport visitors to the property for summer charity events. The boats would provide restroom facilities for groups of up to 600 people.

Question: Do you support Hagadone’s new proposal, for a shorter dock and no helipad?

Valentine’s Day Wild Card — 2/14/08

I’m taking my Sweetie out to dinner tonight to celebrate Valentine’s Day. We met at a church Valentine’s Banquet 35 years ago. I was the speaker. I must have said something memorable. We’ve been married almost 33 years (June 21). Her greatest quality? Kindness. That, and she loves me in spite of myself. I like that in a wife of almost 33 years. No trade-ins going to happen here. Now, for your Valentine’s Day Wild Card …

Bobby’s Girl: Not Romantic, But He’ s My Guy

I’ve been married for a quarter century to the least romantic man in the universe. It used to bother me that he saw little sense in buying cards and bouquets of flowers. But then I stopped feeling sorry for myself and really looked at all the ways he shows me he loves me through the year. He’s a good provider, a generous Good Samaritan, a father any child would be blessed to have and he makes me laugh. Our sidewalks and driveways are always clear, he warms up my car for me, he’s there when things are good and when they aren’t so good. So if a birthday or Valentines Day or anniversary goes by without a wrapped gift or flowers, it’s not hard for me to be reminded that there are a lot of ways to demonstrate love and my sweetheart does it 365 days out of the year/Bobby’s Girl.

Question (for women): What would you rather have (if you could have only one)? A guy that’s true-blue and dependable, without a romantic bone in his body? Or a man who’s romantic but not a decent provider?

HBO’s Best of the Friends Blogs — 2/14/08

Chris Peterson/Glacier Park Magazine snapped this blue heron on the Flathead River in northwest Montana.

*TUBOB offers one of those complicated scenarios of his and asks you for a solution, this time about a situation involving your grandpa and a barn owl here.

*Idaho Escapee discusses the Boys of Summer who are making appearances before spring training gets going in earnest here.

*Kellogg Bloggin’ recalls how much his father and he enjoyed “The Jack Benny Show” decades ago when he was 5 years old here.

*Marmitetoasty has a lot of heart thingies around the house and on the sidebar of her Twaddle blog. She wants to give you part of her heart, too, here.

*Sam The Reporter has a final breakdown of Washington Demo caucus results here.

*Toadman is remind again that what really matters in life is at home here.

HBO Numbers (for Wednesday, Feb. 13): 7975 page-views and 4539 unique views.

Meanwhile, Inland Empire Girl ghost-writes for her Australian Cattle Dog here; Idaho Conservation League focuses on bighorn sheep here; Palousitics has its own beef with Lewiston Trib editorialists here;

Gunman Opens Fire On N. Illinois Campus …

18 victims, 5 fatalities including shooter who commits suicide

In this photo provided by the student-run Northern Star newspaper, rescue workers carry an unidentified victim from the scene of a shooting at a lecture hall at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Ill., today. A man dressed in black opened fire with a shotgun from a stage of a lecture hall at Northern Illinois University on Thursday before he killed himself/AP.

Hat Tip: Zelda

PFHS Girls Stop Pocatello @ State Tourney …

… Report by Greg Lee/Sportslink here

Idaho D’s Break Silence On Larry Craig

Idaho Democratic Party Chairman R. Keith Roark issued a challenge to top state Republican Party brass today, asking them to publicly call for Sen. Larry Craig’s resignation or face the political fallout for protecting one of their own at the expense of the state’s interests/Chuck Oxley, Idaho Democratic Party news release. More here. And: Keith Roark letter here.

KREM2: PF Students Suspended For Sharing Porn

The Post Falls School District has suspended four students accused of sending sexually explicit text messages to the cell phones of classmates. The message contained a picture of a topless woman, which was rumored to be a student at Post Falls High School/KREM2. More here

Vox Box discussion link

OrangeTV: Don’t Waste $$$ On Arby’s Fish

Once a week, the mailman stuffs my box with a handful of fast food and pizza ads that usually go directly into the fireplace. This week, I kinda peeked by accident and what did I see but an Arby’s ad touting the new fish sandwich. All you have to do is tell me something is new and I’m right on it. The verdict: Folks, don’t waste your $2. The previously frozen fish was room temperature, mushy-mushy and flavorless, possibly not cooked long enough despite the golden brown exterior. Mysterious then, that the cheese slice was melted beyond all reasonable recognition. Only one thing can explain this sad state of affairs: the microwave. Ugh!/OrangeTV, Get Out! North Idaho. More “Bread Crumbs”

Question: Anyone use those pizza/fast food direct-mail ads?

HBO @ Noon: A Memorable Valentine’s Day

re: SR Vox Box adviser Erin Daniels e-mailed this Huckleberry from Feb. 21, 2005, to me today

A funny thing happened to Sandpoint High J-instructor Erin Daniels in her sixth-period class last Monday (Valentine’s Day 2005). Her water broke. In an e-mail announcing the birth of Emma Marie, she blames the poor timing on Principal Jim Soper. Quoth: “He was in my room 5th, and just being a real pain.” Editor Chris Ginzton of the Cedar Post rushed to Erin’s rescue, despite turning the wrong way down a street as he drove his adviser to the hospital. Erin’s favorite line from Chris during the hospital rush? “Can I help? Should I be helping you breathe or anything?” Later, a visibly shaken Chris said, “I don’t know how dads DO that!” Or moms! Erin and Emma are doing fine. Ah’m not so sure about Chris.

Question: Do you have a fond Valentine’s Day remembrance?

HBO’s AM Headlines — 2/14/08

Kathy Plonka/Spokesman-Review

Raul Saldana, of Rathdrum, works at Kimball International in Post Falls. Post Falls leaders want their new City Hall to be filled with furniture manufactured at the local Kimball International plant. Store here.

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, Spokesman-Review

*PF police face budget woes: Recent shooting emphasizes officer shortage/Amy Cannata, SR/Prairie Voice — Remember: You can pick up the Prairie Voice at a number of local businesses throughout Kootenai County, including some along Appleway here.

*Tugboats to tackle ice on Lake Coeur d’Alene/Becky Kramer, Spokesman-Review — An ounce of prevention provided by tons of tugboats.

*Workforce housing project denied: Pennsylvania Highlands development needed higher density than zoned/Lucy Dukes, Coeur d’Alene Press — Workforce housing sounds great — as long as the units are built in someone else’s back yard, right?

*Moose make St. Maries visits/Ralph Bartholdt, St. Maries Gazette-Record — I remember when it was a big deal to sight a moose. Now, they’ve become such regular visitors to North Idaho towns that they should band together to form a civic organization.

*Marriages are dwindling: Kootenai County says number of people applying for licenses getting lower/Marc Stewart, Coeur d’Alene Press — Seems like the styles at the Hitchin’ Post are turnin’ as fast as ever.

Press Release: Typo? Or Freudian?

Rathdrum Town Hall Meeting press release: “Your (sic) invited … The Rathdrum Area Chamber of Commerce is hosing a Town Hall Meeting featuring State Senator Mike Jorgensen, State Reprehensive Jim Clark and State Representative Phil Hart. Date/Time: Sat. February 23rd from 9-11 am, Place: Twin Lakes Elementary School Commons”

Hat Tip: Taryn Hecker

CHS Drama Teacher Gets Proposal On Stage

Item: Love is in the air: CHS drama teacher receives proposal on stage in front of her students/Lucy Dukes, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: Mark Day proposed to the Coeur d’Alene High School teacher on Monday, singing “Let Me Call You Sweetheart” on stage in front of her class, bending down on one knee, and asking her to marry him. The two are scheduled to be married on March 29.

Question: How did your sweetheart propose to you?

Question: Favorite Dog

Uno, a 15-inch beagle, competes for Best in Show at the 132nd Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden in New York Tuesday. Uno was awarded Best in Show. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Question: Which dog you’ve owned was your favorite?

CDA Mom: Chocolates, Flowers & Thou

My husband just got me flowers (a dozen roses) and some candy. To most people this may sound trite but my husband doesn’t have a romantic bone in body, so the unprompted flowers and candy are great! Since my honey works the opposite shift as me, we are only together for 3 hours while I sleep. So I will not spend valentines day with my husband (absent the 3 hours while sleeping) and he got me flowers, candy and left me a sweet voice mail! I am a happy lady to know I am soo loved/CDA Mom.

Question: What did you get/give for Valentine’s Day?

Eye Opener: Ethics Panel Slams Sen. Craig

The bathroom at the Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport where U.S. Sen. Larry Craig, R-Idaho, was arrested June 11 by a Minneapolis airport police officer., are shown in this Sept. 7, 2007, AP File Photo. “It’s become a tourist attraction,” said Karen Evans, information specialist at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. “People are taking pictures.” (Secondary art in comments section.)

Question: The Senate Ethics Committee said Wednesday that Sen. Larry Craig acted improperly in connection with a men’s room sex sting last year and had brought discredit on the Senate. How do you feel about the committee’s action?/Idaho Statesman. (Related: Craig warned about using campaign funds for his defense.)

*Too strong
*Just right
*Not strong enough
*No opinion

Related: Eye On Boise provides Craig’s reaction and copy of Ethics Panel letter.

Off The Cuff: E Is For Eavesdrop

“I spent my Saturday evening in the ER. Since no one died, it actually turned out to be a positive experience. There’s just so much interesting stuff in there: security doors, drawers with ambiguous labels and people holding ice on their faces. Probably the best thing is all of the conversation fragments you can hear through the curtains. I wouldn’t make a special trip to the ER just for these perks, but if I’m there already, I might as well enjoy the ambiance”/Alec Lawton, UI Argonaut (“Off The Cuff”).

JeanC’s Goin’ Ablogfestin’

The week is going by fast, which is good as this Saturday is the Huckleberries Online Blogfest up in Coeur d’Alene. I finally will get to see some of the folk I know on that blog face to face. It will be so cool. I even got the unofficial T-shirt one of the other bloggers who hang out there designed and put on Cafe Press. Just gotta write my name in the space. We are going to go up early so we can hit the new Cabala’s in Post Falls and then stop by one the home of one of the other denizen’s of HBO. He is called The Stickman and makes walking sticks for people from sticks he finds while out and about. Then it is off to the meet and greet for an afternoon of pizza and friends. Is it Saturday yet?/JeanC, JeanC’s Cat House and Shooting Gallery. More here

Question: Who’s coming to the HBO Blogfest ‘08?

APhoto of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 2/13/08

Harlee, a 4-year-old miniature long haired dachshund from Ogden, Utah, is fanned by his handler Alex Davison as he naps on the floor of the backstage area during the 132nd Westminster Kennnel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden Monday in New York. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

Top Cutlines:

1. In a desperate attempt to rid themselves of unwanted pets resulting from rampant overbreeding, shelter officials are throwing in a “trophy wife” with each dog adopted this month — Brent Andrews.

2. Now working as a dog handler, former figure skater Tonya Harding was spotted at the Westminster show. “I’ve got it all arranged, the pit bull is going to bite her on the leg right before the competition and you will be crowned champion”/MikeS.

3. There once was a doxie named Harlee/that had hair longer than Bob Marley/His handler Alex brushed and brushed/a whimpering Harlee she hushed/until she made Harlee less gnarly/TUBOB.

HM: JohnA


Tumblewords Illustration


seeking slight comfort
imagined his old girlfriend
missing their past


his slight ex-girlfriend
seeking shells on Sanibel
imagined him ~ not

Sue Turner/Tumblewords

SR Publisher Gives State of the Newspaper

The Good: We’ll take more journalistic risk, promoting the Spokesman-Review as a source of information and not just as a newspaper

The Bad: Fewer young people are using newspapers everywhere, and current subscribers are eventually going to die

The Ugly: Industry and company advertising revenue is down because advertisers are finding new ways to spread the word, because consumer habits are changing toward web

Thuy Nguyen’s complete Daily Briefing report

Spin Control 2.0 Has Superdelegate List …

… for Idaho and Washington — and where they stand on the Democratic presidential race here.

Question: Should superdelegates follow the clear dictates of party members in caucuses and primaries? Or should they vote their own conscience?

Paglia: On McCain

“John McCain’s courage under torture during the Vietnam War deserves everyone’s gratitude and respect. But as a national candidate, the stumpy, uptight McCain is a lemon. Oy, that weaselly voice and those dated locutions and stilted intonations. Who needs a weird old coot with a short fuse in the White House? This isn’t a smart game plan for the war on terror”/Camille Paglia, More here

RandyS: Craig Closes PAC

Hadn’t seen much reference to this, but (and a hat tip to a correspondent who suggested it) the closure of Idaho Senator Larry Craig’s political action committee, Alliance for the West, seems worth a note here. Federal Election Commission reports show the PAC as zeroed out, with no debts and no cash on hand, at the end of last year. It spent $127,909 during the year, much of it for consulting and for fundraising (the latter seeming a little odd)/Randy Stapilus, Ridenbaugh Press. More here

HBO @ Noon: Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition

The 2008 Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition (warning: partial nudity) is hitting the newstands, featuring a topless model on the cover. One online critic argues that the swimsuit edition has become passe and irrelevant at a time when naked and scantily clad models can be found on the Internet at the click of a mouse. What do you think?

Argonaut: A Right To Bear Arms On Campus?

Holly Bowen/UI Argonaut

Off The Cuff: Buy Yourselves Flowers

“I just want to encourage all the single ladies out there to make themselves feel appreciated this Valentine’s Day. Buy yourself flowers, ladies. And no, don’t lie about it and pretend it’s from some secret boyfriend. You don’t need some guy to buy you flowers. Buy yourself flowers — they’re pretty and you deserve it. I bought myself daffodils, and they are delightful”/Savannah Cummings, UI Argonaut “Off The Cuff.”

Parents Council: CDA, Spokane Not On Best List?

According to’s 2007 list of Best Places to Raise Your Kids, the communities that offer families a combination of safety, community and education are usually towns with family-oriented neighborhoods, affordable homes and good schools. Business Week used the following five criteria: test scores, cost of living, recreational and cultural activities, number of schools and risk of crime. I was sure Spokane or Coeur d’Alene or one of the smaller towns in the area would be on the list, but alas, that wasn’t the case. In fact, there weren’t any Washington or Idaho cities on that list. The only one in the Northwest that made it to the top 50 was Dundee, Ore., a commmunity near Portland of about 2,600 people where the median household income is $50,284/Virginia de Leon/Parents Council. More here

Question: Do you consider Coeur d’Alene, Spokane (or your Inland Northwest town) as a good place to raise children?

Papercarrier: Street Crews Made Job Harder

Kept the streets up? cha, right, try to deliver newspapers between midnight and 6 when A) there’s heavy snows 6-to-8 inches on a Sunday, B) lingers through a Monday, C) then gets packed, D)thawed, E) frozen into ice, then F) meets warm temperatures and rain and G) gets heavy and deep again through another weekend while city plow crews snooze for two or three days. Al Gore, where’s global warming when you need it?/Papercarrier.

Question: Who had the worst job during Snow Storm ‘08?

1. Paper carriers
2. Street crews
3. Power utility repairmen
4. Truck drivers
5. Traffic patrol cops
6. Other

WorldNetDaily: Should Huckabee Withdraw?

Question: Should Huckabee withdraw from the White House race?

1. Yes, I don’t want a theocracy in America
2. Yes, he’s harming GOP unity and Republican chances of winning in November
3. Yes, he doesn’t have a chance to win against Obama or Hillary
4. Yes, he fought the good fight, but McCain’s lead is insurmountable
5. No, it’s ain’t over till it’s over
6. No, he’s the only ‘true conservative’ left in the race
7. No, I’m convinced Mike Huckabee will be the next president
8. No, a good showing now will make him a good VP choice, or better candidate next time
9. No, who says you have to withdraw just because you’re not the leader?
10. Other

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

Wild Card/Tuesday — 2/12/08

I chatted with Justin at Capone’s earlier today to see if everything’s ready for the HBO Blogfest ‘08 Saturday. He said he’s as ready as he was last year when 50-65 HBOers trooped to his Fourth Street digs to enjoy the pizza, pop and hobnobbing. I told him to short-change the garlic pizza. But otherwise to keep them coming 5 at a time. Now, for your Wild Card …

HBO’s Best of the Friends’ Blogs — 2/12/08

“No better way to brighten up these gray days … than to photograph Bohemian Waxwings,” writes Chris Peterson/Glacier Park Magazine, here.

*Inland Empire Girl remembers the No Bake Cookies that her landlady used to make when IEG was 5 years old and provides the recipe, too, here.

*IdaBlue wonders where the regional editions of the Idaho Statesman went here.

*”Being the pidgeon police can get you out of a tough spot,” contends Marmitetoasty/Twaddle, here.

*TUBOB sez he misses the snow of the Inland Northwest but that didn’t stop him from having a swell weekend on the Oregon Coast with 60-degree weather here. Also, he posts a great photo of his friend Kim’s soldier son with Iraqi children here.

HBO Numbers (for Monday, Feb. 11): 8785 page-views and 4893 unique views.

Meanwhile, Adam’s Blog spins a tale of two endorsements here; Fort Boise predicts mail will go up at least a penny per year here; and Wayward Episcopalian doesn’t think he matters to Congress here.

APhoto of the Day w/Top Cutlines— 2/12/08

Colombia’s bullfighter Cesar Rincon is gored during a bullfight at the Macarena’s fair in Medellin, Colombia, Saturday. Rincon was not seriously injured. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Luis Benavides)

Top Cutlines

1. (tie) Roses are red/Violets are blue/You can poke at the bull/sometimes he pokes back at you — TUBOB; and: Sometimes thee bul weens señor~! — Pecky Cox.

2. “Hey Cesar! Time for a little less cheek, a little more respect, amigo” — Kevin Taylor.

3. It wasn’t the red cape that annoyed Ferdinand so, it was the damn pink socks Rincon insisted on wearing into the ring — CindyH.

HM: Dave Turner, LynnS & LP

Vox Box: Should We Keep The Penny?

On “60 Minutes” recently, posts Andrew/Vox Box, there was a debate about whether to cut the penny from US currency completely, or to leave it the way it is. On the “remove it” side, an argument was the the US Mints spend more money producing pennies and nickels than any other currency. Others said that charities and retailers could suffer from the loss of the $.01. Penny drives would be wiped out of existence and stores would have to round their prices up to the nearest nickel.

Should the US cut the penny? Or should it remain on the menu?

Coming Wednesday: Valentine’s Treats

Dan Pelle/Spokesman-Review

In Wednesday’s SR, Lorie Hutson/Fresh Sheet tells you how to make Valentine’s treats like those above. You can get a sneak preview today at her blog.

Question: What is your favorite Valentine’s treat?

Nonini Calls Out Lewiston Trib Editorialists

Mr. Fisher and Mr. Henderson are living examples of why newspapers are dying, and why newspapers are losing credibility. They read what somebody else writes, dish up a few cheap shots and present them as “cutting-edge” editorials. The tactics might have worked during the 1960s or 1970s, when Bill Hall was writing editorials. But the method strikes me as outdated by today’s standards. During Bill Hall’s day, when the only practical way to contact someone was by telephone, contacting an individual was not always possible. But in 2008, when e-mails are used at least as much as telephones, there’s no excuse for not making that effort/Rep. Bob Nonini, House District 5. More here

Question: Should an editorial writer contact someone before s/he criticizes him in the newspaper?

The Way We Were — Patty Hearst

Patricia Hearst poses for a picture with her French bulldog, Diva, at the 132nd Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden in New York, Monday. Diva was named Best of Opposite Sex. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Question: What were you doing in April 1974 when Patty Hearst was kidnapped by the Symbionese Liberation Army?

McCain Still Winning Washington GOP Caucuses

With 96 percent of results in, Esser said McCain had 3,191 precinct delegates (25.6 percent) to Mike Huckabee’s 2,898 (23.3 percent) — a difference of just 293. Texas Rep. Ron Paul won 21 percent of Washington’s precinct delegates, and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who dropped out of the race this past week, got 15 percent, according to the latest numbers from the GOP/Seattle PI. More here

Online Poll: Which TV Show Miss Most?

With Hollywood about to rev up again following a three-month writers strike, which television show are you looking forward to watching?/Idaho Statesman.

*Grey’s Anatomy
*Desperate Housewives
*30 Rock

DFO: “Pushing Daisies”

Toad Goes Acaucusin’

Having said that, I’ve become curious, in my own way, about this year’s events. So much so that last Friday, I went to hear Michelle Obama speak at the Fox theater in Spokane. I was one of the last ones to get into the theater, so I had to stand at the back and sit on a bench and look through a window to see the proceedings. There was a lot of banner waving and cheering inside the theater, but it was quiet in the lobby, so we could hear things over the speaker system, I suppose. Mrs. Obama’s speech was inspiring, but general. It was very well done, but non-specific. I did learn more about her, and her husband. I liked what I learned, and what I heard. She seemed genuine, likable, and human. I felt just inspired enough after her speech, to attend a caucus the following day, at Glover Middle School/Toadman, Synaptic Disunion. More here

Question: How would you rate your involvement in the prez election over previous years? More engaged? Less engaged? Same-o?

NYTimes: Donors Fear Race Slipping Away From Hillary

Item: For Clinton, Bid Hinges on Texas and Ohio/Patrick Healy, New York Times

More Info: Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton and her advisers increasingly believe that, after a series of losses, she has been boxed into a must-win position in the Ohio and Texas primaries on March 4, and she has begun reassuring anxious donors and superdelegates that the nomination is not slipping away from her, aides said on Monday.

Question: Is the race slipping away from former frontrunner Hillary Clinton?

JournoMom: Carlin’s 7 Words Have Served Me Well

A “bad word” is only as “bad” as the hearer believes it is. Really. It’s all relative. I pretty much stick to Carlin’s seven dirty words. And I don’t even find the “p” word so bad anymore. Beyond that, there’s only so much to do. After all, am I supposed to be mad at my husband because he taught my 3-year-old daughter to use the phrase, “I ripped a big toot,” which she, of course, says with a big grin and a giggle? See, it’s all relative.


Kendramama: In Praise Of Size 2 Sorrels

When I have to brave the vicious elements, I don my trusty Sorels- they have a killer tread and have the added bonus of keeping my feet toasty warm. Of course, as I wear a size two in kids shoes, I have to double sock it as well to keep ‘em on as they only come in womens size four at the smallest. Therefore, I look like a duck when I wear them. But screw it, at least I’m a warm, sure-footed duck.


Wild Card/Monday — 2/11/08

My record for not falling on the ice and snow came to an end this morning — I think. It wasn’t a pratfall, where your legs slip out from under you and you bonk your head on something hard, like Family Phil did recently. I was expecting the back steps to be slick. So I proceeded with caution. Didn’t matter. I slid off them onto more slick stuff. Did a half turn. And slowly dropped to all fours in an adjacent snow bank. Barely got my knees wet. Bottom line? Remain cautious. Now, for your Wild Card …

SVGirl: Share A Memory From Age 5

“All this snow around here reminds me of the last time I lived here,” posts Inland Empire Girl, “and there was this much snow in Kellogg, and that was when I was five-years-old. Think back to when you were five, and share some memories from when you were five-years-old.

HBO’s Best of the Local Blogs — 2/11/08

Family Phil/A Family Runs Through It quit enjoying winter when he fell on his keister here. I posted a link to that story Friday. But I couldn’t resist this photo from that post.

*Dogwalk Musings is uncomfortable with some of Barack Obama’s positions, but she’s more uncomfortable with the Bush administration here.

*Kendramama shakes off a funk to attack the snow outside that’s threatening to isolate Junior and her from the world while Tonydaddy is out of town here.

*Team Ehrgot was no match for RB’s in the annual Priest Lake Softball Tournament competition. RB’s claimed its 12th title in 39 years with a 28-3 victory, according to As The Lake Churns, here.

*OrangeTV/Get Out! North Idaho commemorates Taco Johns in free-verse poetry here.

*Notes On A Napkin celebrates fearless, ferocious, funny, friendly son Caleb’s fifth birthday here.

HBO Blog Numbers (Feb. 3-9, 2008): 53,420 page-views and 31,855 unique views; same week 2007: 34,700 page-views and 20,325 unique views.

Meanwhile, Tumblewords “Love ‘ku” here; A Butterfly Moment gives “Juno” thumbs up here; Bay Views provides a surprising snow pack report here; Far Corner finds a bright spot in TV wasteland here; Frum Helen Back has her dreams shattered here; JeanC offers “Nap Time” here; and Otis G introduces us to Boozilla here.

Snail Mail: A Penny More For Your Thoughts

AP photo

The cost of a first-class stamp will rise to 42 cents starting May 12, the U.S. Postal Service said today. The price of the Forever stamp will go up at the same time, meaning those stamps can still be purchased for 41 cents but will remain good for first-class postage after the rate increase takes effect/Associated Press.

Rebecca Nappi, A Matter Of Opinion: I bought some Forever stamps for 41 cents during the most recent price hike, tucked them away, feeling a little ridiculous but this news today made me feel wiser rather than a miser.

Question: Anyone else purchase Forever stamps? And will this increase turn you away from snail mail whenever possible? Or does it make any difference?

Emergency Efforts Focus On Worley Area

Kootenai County Office of Emergency Management news release: At this time Worley seems to be the county’s biggest trouble spot with large volumes of snow and a shortage of equipment to move it. The Office of Emergency Management and State of Idaho are assisting any way they can, requesting extra snow moving equipment to the area when it becomes available. With the warm weather Worley is also experiencing a softening of the gravel roads which will not support the large equipment needed to clear the snow so they are concentrating on paved roads. More here.

Memories In Late Winter

I can recall warm summer days
of great beauty seen but rarely;
I can recall warm summer days,
but at this point only barely.

The Bard of Sherman Avenue

Cis, Hubby Decide Who They’re Voting For

Hillary and Bill have been on a 30+ journey for themselves. For the power, why else would she stick it out during the Monica deal. She is not stupid. It was for the PLAN. The plan of power. Which I could live with, IF they were in a plan to make America better. If they had a plan for the nation, that he would start and she would continue. But it hasn’t been there. He did not do anything really to speak of, except to embarrass the office with his dalliances/Cis, From A Simple Mind. More here.

Question: Have you zeroed in on someone you want to vote for rather than someone you’re voting against?

Gregoire Not Telling Superdelegates How To Vote

Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire – a Democratic superdelegate who announced late last week that’s she was backing Obama – was asked by a reporter Monday if the Clinton-leaning superdelegates should change their votes to reflect Obama’s strong win here in Saturday’s caucuses. (For more on caucuses, the candidates and presidential politics, see our new Spin Control 2.0 blog by clicking here.) “You know, after what I went through, I’m the last person to tell a superdelegate what to do with their vote,” Gregoire said. “I respect everybody’s individual decision, and whatever decision they’re going to make from here to the convention”/Rich Roesler, Eye On Olympia. More here.

Question: Should Democratic superdelegates committed to Hillary Clinton take into account Barack Obama’s late surge? And switch?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 2/11/08

Musher Steve Madsen, of Cougar, Wash., kicks up snow as he and his dogs leave the ceremonial staring line of the six-day Race to the Sky in Rimini, Mont., on Saturday. Story here. (AP Photo/The Independent Record, George Lane)

1. Pet Cemetery: Idaho Statesman execs are apologizing today after inadvertently running an obituary for a pet in their obituaries section here.

2. If you have an automatic sprinkler system in your yard, you probably blew it out before the cold weather arrived. Not one Post Falls man, and now he’s fighting a $1,000 water bill here/KREM2.

3. Sports: Idaho athletic director Rob Spear, a former professional basketball player, was unable to hide his disappointment in the Vandals’ basketball programs during last week’s visit to Boise here/Idaho Statesman.

4. SR Blogs: Starbucks to offer 2 free hours of wi-fi/Tom Sowa, TXT; Political headache for some (plus videos from Clinton, Obama visits)/Thuy Nguyen, Daily Briefing; Do not misuse “schizophrenia”/Doug Floyd, Ask The Editors; House GOP to lose another/Rich Roesler, Eye On Olympia; and Shock training begins soon/Jessica Brown, Sportslink.

5. IMHO: Waiting for Hillary can test wits/Doug Clark, SR; Obama’s message resonates in Rockies, but why?/David Frey, New West; How Idaho delegation voted on stimulus package/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman; Obama’s promise resonates even in ruby-red Idaho/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune.

6. News Roundup: Truck loaded with Valentine’s Day flowers catches fire/Idaho Statesman; Skier found dead at base of tree/KTVB; Toddler who fell in hot tub doing fine/KTVB; Idaho army sniper guilty of killing Iraqi civilian/KTVB; and Canadians descend on Flathead Valley/Daily Inter Lake.

Orbusmax Special: Randy Quaid fined for bad behavior in Seattle here.

Hillary Needs Virginia To Stop Obama ‘Mo’

Disappointed Hillary Clinton supporters wait for a phone call from the senator who was scheduled to make a campaign stop in Roanoke, Va., on Sunday. (AP photo/ Sam Dean, The Roanoke Times)

Huckabee Cries Foul In Washington Vote

Item: Huckabee disputes Washington vote count/Janet I. Tu, Seattle Times

More Info: Huckabee’s campaign took issue with Washington state Republican Party Chairman Luke Esser’s decision to call the race Saturday night with 87 percent of the precincts counted. At that point, McCain was ahead of Huckabee by 242 delegates out of the 13,000 counted, Esser said. The Huckabee campaign contends there were another 1,500 or so delegates not counted.

Question: Does Huckabee have a legitimate beef?

Question: How Do You Find A Good Babysitter?

And how do you find the good ones? Some people are lucky enough to have relatives in town to help care for the kids once in a while, but for those who don’t have family in the area, whom do you turn to for the occasional night out? … In the past, we’ve had babysitters who simply turned on the TV and that seemed to be the agenda for the afternoon or evening. Is it fair to expect more? I don’t think sitters need to do the dishes or any housework, but how about reading my children a book or doing a puzzle instead?/Virginia de Leon, Parents Council. Full post here.

Question: What are the qualities of a good babysitter? What do you do to keep the good ones?

Bob Paulos: Spokane Should Turn Lights Off

While most cities spend big money enticing people to move in, the Spokane newspaper wants to make it pleasant for them to leave. It’s a wonderful idea for building rapport with the business community, which sees customers lost when people leave. Oh, well, as a wise man once said: “Lose some, Lose some.” I just remembered, those were the words of Vince Spezzano, promotion director of the Gannett Co., largest newspaper group in the country, a perfect summary for the Spokane situation. I have an idea for another Spokane newspaper promotion, one that fits the “leaving idea.” Sell chances for who gets to turn off all the lights in town after all of Spokane is sold on the idea of spending their last day in the city/Bob Paulos/Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

DFO: I don’t have any idea what Paulos is talking about. Or why the Press would continue to run his nonsense, when Spokane is enjoying its own boom. I thoroughly enjoy Coeur d’Alene. I have for 24 years. But I also give Spokane props for getting its act together. However, I can’t resist posting Paulos’ nonsense. I wonder how many others in this community look through his crotchety filter?

Roy Scheider, 75, ‘Jaws’ Actor, RIP

This picture provided by Universal Pictures shows actors Roy Scheider, left, and Robert Shaw during filming of the movie “Jaws.” Scheider, a two-time Oscar nominee, has died Sunday. He was 75. More here. Observations by Dan Webster/Movies & More here. (AP Photo/Universal Pictures)

Question: Did “Jaws” scare you the first time you saw the movie?

Huckabee Not Conceding Washington To McCain

In an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press” Sunday morning, the former Arkansas governor said his campaign is looking into some legal issues, without going into specifics. His campaign did not immediately respond to calls for additional comment. Fox News reported Sunday afternoon that Huckabee’s campaign’s is not accusing the McCain camp of any impropriety, but is pursing an investigation of the caucus results based on its sole gripe of “bad judgment” on the part of state GOP Chairman Luke Esser, who called the race for McCain. With about 87 percent of precincts reporting, Esser issued a statement congratulating McCain on a “hard-fought win,” and Huckabee on a “strong second-place finish.” McCain won 26 percent of the vote, and Huckabee got 24 percent, according to the GOP’s tally. More here

Gonzaga, WSU Win Big, UI Falls On Road

Rajah Bose/Spokesman-Review

Gonzaga’s Micah Downs jumps on the back of teammate Will Foster after defeating Pepperdine 101-59 at McCarthey Athletic Center in Spokane Saturday.

*Gonzaga 101, Pepperdine 59, Jim Meehan Sportslink story here and further game notes here
*WSU 74, USC 50; Nick Eaton game story here, video postgame interview here, Vince Grippi game color here.
*Louisiana Tech 72, Idaho 64; Greg Lee’s Sportslink story here.

Test Your Huckleberries Online Knowledge

As we get ready for HBO Blogfest ‘08, celebrating the fourth anniversary of Huckleberries Online, I’ve compiled a few questions to test your blog history:

1. What other two names has this blog had?
2. Why did I start this blog?
3. Any Mouse often cut-and-pasted words and prayers in a foreign language. Which language was it.
4. What is Ramaro?
5. What action did former commissioner Gus Johnson take against Huckleberries Online.
6. How did Marmitetoasty shut the SR’s CDA newsroom down?
7. How did Trish Gannon drive Any Mouse away from HBO?
8. Who traveled the farthest to attend HBO Blogfest ‘07?
9. What does RSPA stand for?
10. Where did the name “Wild Goose Chase Gang” come from?
11. How did Rocket’s Brain Trust rescue DFO at last year’s blogfest?
12. What do Cis’ husband and DFO have in common?

DFO: Feel free to add your own questions.

Kendramama: Rhymes To Blogfest By

I thought everyone would be stoked about (Blogfest ‘08)! I am! And not because I’m DFO’s pet, either- cuz in case you may have noticed, I seem to have been cast aside as of late. (heehee!) Which is cool; I’d much prefer to be just another one of you guys. But right now, picture me in a short skirt waving around a couple of pom-poms, screaming, “HBO is #1! The Blogfest will be super fun! We don’t care if it’s slick or far- just get your ass into your car! Rah, rah, sis-boom-bah! Beer and pizza, While we all blah blah blah!” Okay, I admit it, I was never a cheerleader. I spent more time behind the gym smoking cigarettes and jeering at the preppy chicks than I did showing any school spirit. However, I can conjure up some Blogfest enthusiasm! How about y’all?

WND Poll: Can Huckabee United Anti-McCain Vote, Win?

Does Huckabee have a shot at beating McCain for the GOP nomination?/WorldNetDaily

1. No, he’s tilting at windmills
2. No, McCain’s put it away already
3. No, McCain’s the media darling – they’ll hammer Huckabee so hard he won’t know what hit him
4. No, Huckabee’s too far right – McCain represents the average Republican better and can appeal to Democrats
5. As a Democrat, I sure hope so – he’ll be easier for Clinton or Obama to beat
6. No, as much as I wish he could – McCain’s lead is too great
7. Yes, now that he and Romney aren’t splitting the same pool of voters between themselves
8. Yes, the fear of a McCain presidency and the narrowing of the field has awakened conservatives and given them a clear choice
9. Yes – just look at how well he did in yesterday’s caucuses and primaries!
10. Other

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

Obama Sweeps 3 States, Virgin Islands

Sen. Barack Obama swept the Louisiana primary and caucuses in Nebraska and Washington state Saturday night, slicing into Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s slender delegate lead in their historic race for the Democratic presidential nomination. The Illinois senator also won caucuses in the Virgin Islands, completing his best night of the campaign/Associated Press. More here

Washington Caucus Wild Card — 2/9/08

Idaho jumped on the Obamarama Express Tuesday, and now we’ll see if Washington, Nebraska, Louisiana and the Virgin Islands follows suit today. ‘Tis nice to have an interesting race remaining on one side. While we wait for results of today’s Democratic caucuses, especially in Washington, you can play this Wild Card for your own threads …

Truckers Fight Nasty Roads To Deliver Goods

Kyle Mills/Lewiston Tribune, AP

A tractor-trailer remains buried in snow Friday in Elk River. The Idaho Transportation Department is also reporting several state highway closures, including portions of U.S. Highway 20 between Arco and Carey and a stretch between Mountain Home and Fairfield.

WorldNetDaily Poll: Obama Excitement

What do you think is causing such enthusiasm for Barack Obama?/WorldNetDaily

1. He’s the most inspirational political figure since JFK
2. He’s tapped into the younger generation while Hillary’s appeal is to their parents and McCain’s to their grandparents
3. Whether they admit it or not, a lot of Democrats don’t want 8 more years of all that Clinton baggage
4. He’s right on the issues, he doesn’t slam his opponents, he’s got a positive message and a smooth delivery
5. It’s just the right time in America for a black president
6. Given the dismal performance of most Washington politicians, he’s a breath of fresh air by comparison
7. He’s been treated with kid gloves by the media because they don’t want to be accused of racism
8. He’s been able to dupe countless Americans with empty slogans even though he’s inexperienced and his policies would be disastrous for our liberty and security
9. Frankly, I don’t get it – people are nuts to fall for this fraud
10. Other

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

Digger: Can’t Wait ‘Til HBO Blogfest ‘08

Digger: Am I the only one who is SUPER EXCITED that BlogFEST 08 is just a week away??

Event: 4th anniversary of Huckleberries Online
Time: 2-4 p.m.
Date: Saturday, Feb. 16
Place: Capone’s
Fare: SR provides pizza & pop

RSVP’d: Doug Clark (w/guitar to sing “The Duane B. Hagadone Blues” and “Tap Three Times,” Dick Haugen (of The Spokesman-Review, as of March 3), Frito Ray (the courageous potato chip driver of the wintry Palouse)

Question: Are you going to attend?

Malibu Man: Disgusted With Road Closures

I am disgusted with the highway districts and Kootenai County and the State of Idaho for that matter. We live south of Coeur d’ Alene and they cannot even keep our road open. No I don’t live on a private drive either. My daughter has piano lessons to attend. My wife has her appointments in town to go to and we have been snowed in for two days. We pay our fair share of taxes here and we should get the service we deserve. Everyone should get out and vote this year and throw the bums out. I have never seen a State as backward as this.

Malibu Man

TGIFriday Wild Card — 2/8/08

Frito Ray finally got a snow day today. He couldn’t make his roundtrip run to Lewiston this morning because US 195 was closed on the Washington side. And US 95 wasn’t much better on this side. A coupla trucks spun out around 5:30 this morning at Mile Post 403 (wherever the heck that’s at) effectively blocking traffic traveling on 95. One of Ray’s stops in Moscow closed the doors today to get snow off the roof. So it probably has enough chips to get by until his next delivery tomorrow morning. Now, for your Wild Card …

Hillary Doesn’t Take Questions — Spin Control 2.0

Discuss Obama visit here
Discuss Clinton visit here

Clinton’s traveling press secretary explains that she didn’t take questions because she is running behind schedule, wanted to talk to people individually and still is going to try to meet with folks at the overflow site at the Girl Scouts office. However, the West Central crowd didn’t hear the explanation/Jim Camden, Spin Control 2.0.

*Read Spin Control 2.0 Live Blog previous posts here
*SR breaking news on Clinton, Michelle Obama visits here.

Taste of the Town: Buffet Eating

In the food world, no beast is more ravenously dangerous than the all-you-can-eat buffet. Whether stuffing your face with four types of chicken tenders at Old Granny’s Corral or shoveling curry at an Indian restaurant, you’re heading for the groan zone. And that’s a glorious place to be. Especially around these parts, what with the number of ethnic buffets in the area. Middle Eastern, Chinese, Mexican, Indian, Asian fusion, Japanese … whatever the flavor, we’re rocking it. Here’s a beginner’s guide to global gluttony, Spokane style/Tom Bowers, Taste of the Town.

Question: Which buffet restaurant is your favorite?

APhoto of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 2/8/08

Children listen to Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., addresses supporters at a rally at Pier 30 in Seattle Thursday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Top Cutline

1. The American public shuts its eyes and prepares to swallow whatever the candidates feed them through carefully constructed campaign rhetoric/LynnS.

2. When is she going to get to the part where you can turn a $1000 into 100k on the futures market?/In The Know.

3. “Trustworthy, loyal, helpful, courteous, kind - hey, wait a minute! Joey, ace thet sign, we’re at the wrong rally, man”/John Austin.


Roof Caves In @ Northern Idaho Prison

Idaho Department of Correction officials say heavy snow collapsed the roof of a gymnasium at North Idaho Correctional Institution in Cottonwood. No one was injured in the collapse, which happened Friday afternoon/KREM2. More here.

Eye On Boise: New NI Water Bills Surface

New legislation to put off the North Idaho water rights adjudication and require an advisory vote of area residents before it goes forward was introduced in the Senate Resources Committee this afternoon. Sen. Joyce Broadsword, R-Sagle, who’s sponsoring several bills to either cancel or scale back the controversial adjudication, said she thinks the new bill offers a solution. “I think it’s an opportunity for the education piece to take place, for people to feel that their voice counts and they have a say,” Broadsword said. “It takes a step back and maybe starts with that grass-roots effort that we should’ve had before”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise.

Eye On Boise Roundup: Committee OKs Otter appointment; State cabin leases could go up to 35 years; and This time, state boating bill is introduced.

Me And My Gal

Presidential hopeful, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., right, waves as he stands with Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire after Gregoire endorsed Obama at a rally Friday at KeyArena in Seattle. Washington state voters will take part in political caucuses Saturday. Story “Thousands pack KeyArena to see Obama” here. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Q: Can Romance Survive After Kids Arrive?

I hope this subject isn’t too personal, but with Valentine’s Day less than a week away I couldn’t help but wonder about everyone else’s love life. Since our second child was born less than two yeas ago, I get so busy with the kids that I sometimes don’t have the time to think of my husband in any other light except as the guy who helps me take care of my children and fixes things around the house. Rather un-romantic, but true!/Virginia de Leon, Parents Council. More here.

Question: How are you celebrating Valentine’s Day this year? Any tips on how to keep the romance alive?

Outrage? Accused SV Coach Gets Job Back

Item: Former coach back in class: Schmerer had been accused of sexual relationship with student/Sara Leaming, Spokesman-Review

Steve Smith/News Is A Conversation: Even if charges were never filed and even if the state settled the case leaving Schmerer with only a school district reprimand in his file, is the level of acknowledged involvement with the female student more than should be tolerated? More here.

Question (from Steve Smith): Is this an outrage? Or not?

HBO @ Noon: Have Clintons Worn Out Welcome?

A top Northwest opinion expert, Tim Hibbitts of Portland, posed a key question to be answered by Saturday’s caucuses in Washington, and Oregon’s spring primary. ‘Have the Clintons worn out their welcome?’ Hibbitts asked/Joel Connelly, Seattle Post-Intelligencer. More here.

Question: Well, have the Clintons worn out their welcome in the Pacific Northwest?

Southern Koot-Co Roads Impassable

The Worley Highway District says 90 percent of the rural roads on the outskirts of Worley are impassable due to drifting snow. The highway district is advising people to stay off the roads in southern Kootenai County and road crews are waiting for the wind and drifting snow to die down before doing any more work/Taryn Hecker, Spokesman-Review.

HBO AM Headlines — 2/8/08

A tow truck stops to help a stranded motorist on US Highway 95 Thursday in Genesee, between Moscow and Lewiston. High winds and icy roads closed the Highway for most of the day. Area roads remained closed today here. (AP Photo/Lewiston Tribune, Steve Hanks)

*Idaho Records, Sherry Adkins, Spokesman-Review

*Wolves kill deer at bus stop: 3 predators involved in St. Maries area attack/Ralph Bartholdt, St. Maries Gazette-Record — The reintroduction of wolves into the Idaho wilds is one of the dumber things the federal government has done.

*Hayden company scores federal contracts: LA Aluminum Casting to build military equipment for Iraq/Rick Thomas, Coeur d’Alene Press — Every little bit helps the North Idaho economy.

*Riverbanks project keeps soil, pollution out of water/Becky Kramer, Spokesman-Review — A win-win project for property owners and boaters.

*Transportation budgets feel strain of record snowfall: for winter materials costs/Lucy Dukes, Coeur d’Alene Press — Don’t look at me. I didn’t use studs this winter.

*Judge to decide Valley Vista Care lawsuit: Sandpoint nursing home faces negligence charges in sexual assault/Keith Kinnaird, Bonner County Daily Bee — Relax, the trial won’t happen for more than a year. The wheels of justice grind slowly.

Sho-Co Commish Krulitz Won’t Seek Re-election

Shoshone County Commissioner Sherry Krulitz announced today that she will not seek re-election. She’s currently serving her 20th year as a commissioner. Krulitz is past president of the Idaho Association of Counties and was the first county officer from Idaho to be appointed to chair a committee at the National Association of Counties.

Online Poll: Where Did You Meet Your Lover?

Where did you meet your lover? — Idaho Statesman?

*Blind date
*Still looking

DFO: At a church Valentine’s banquet

MartyF: Nicknames Make Clubs Tons Of Fun

I know they extort money, run drugs and rub out the competition, but I still think it would be kinda fun to join the mafia. Not because I enjoy committing a heinous crime here and there — except for the occasional second Diet Pepsi refill when only one is allowed, I consider myself a law-abiding citizen — it’s just that their nicknames are so cool. As the result of a recent federal probe, 62 wiseguys with a whopping 83 nicknames were indicted. For those of you who are mathematically challenged, on average, that’s more than one nickname per organized crime member/Marty Fortier, Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

Question: What nickname would you prefer if you were a wiseguy?

DickH: Spokane Roads Worse Than CDA’s

I’ve driven in both Spokane and CDA over the last day and Spokane is, by far, the worst of the two. Spokane has far less snow than CDA. CDA has a better snow plan. The South Hill is brutal.

Dick Haugent

Shannon: CDA Side Streets Rattle Teeth

Some of Cd’A’s side streets are pretty bad, washboard followed by 1-2” drop offs. I feel sorry for pregnant women right now! I’m wondering if dentists are seeing an increase in people who are having fillings falling out?


Wild Card/Thursday — 2/7/08

I’ve been trying to decide whether to get on my roof to knock down more snow — the second story part of our home. I’ll probably just watch a ballgame and hope Mother Nature takes care of the problem instead before the snow gets too heavy. Anyone wondering where we’re going to put all the water when this thing melts? Now, for your Wild Card …

Kingdom Of Ada: 69% Support This Winter

The Idaho Stateman’s question of the day offers further proof that Idahoans are miles apart literally and figuratively. Question: “After years of drought and below-normal precipitation, Idaho is having an above-average snow year. How do you feel about all of the snow?” Of the 1327 replies:

33% Love it
36% Need it
6% Tired of shoveling
9% Hate driving in it
16% Ready for spring

They’d change their tune if they were experiencing a real winter.

HBO’s Best of the Friends Blogs — 2/7/08

Atmospheric Ruminations Illustration

Idaho Escapee fears he’s in danger of becoming a political animal here.

*Lukewarm TUBOB sums up the prez wannabes: “What an uninspiring lot of compromises and inertia.” Click here.

*As a former Spokane resident now living in New York after a stint in London, the Perambulator catches up on the prez reace here.

*Chronic Discontent has learned the hard way that the real cost of a dog goes beyond the sticker price at a pet store here.

*Marmitetoasty’s as hooked on her morning tea as some of us are addicted to a double shot of caffeine here.

*Kellogg Bloggin’ recalls when singer Phil Collins helped him through a bad stretch of life here.

HBO Blog Numbers (for Wednesday, Feb. 6): 9000 page-views and 5376 unique views.

Meanwhile, Wayward Episcopalian (guy with the goatee) posts several photos with prez wannabes here; Toad’s not Catholic but he still likes the idea of going crazy before Ash Wednesday here; Inland Empire Girl wonders what kind of chocolate you are here; IdaBlue celebrates a turning point for Idaho Dems here; the Idaho Conservation League blog has a message about “cleaning the air” here; and PDX Pup contends there’s no problem that can’t be solved with chocolate here.

Boise Roundup: January Revenues Down

Idaho legislators are expressing fears about whether they can fund Gov. Butch Otter’s proposed budget due to anticipated worsening economic conditions – and they got the first numbers today that bolster that fear. Though preliminary, state revenue figures for January show a sharp drop, coming in $36 million below projections. It’s the first such shortfall – December’s figures met projections, and November was the last of five straight months in which state tax revenues exceeded the state’s projections. “While we’re not raising the panic flag or a red flag, we certainly are raising the orange flag of caution,” said JFAC Co-Chairman Dean Cameron, R-Rupert/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise, SR. More here.

Eye On Boise Roundup: Otter pitches for pay, benefits plan; Federal judge rebukes justices in school suit; Challenges ahead for ITD; Water wars spread north; and Taxes due? Charge it.

Worse City Road Conditions: CDA Or Spokane?

Rajah Bose/Spokesman-Review

Motorists trickle past Vickie Harrington and her husband Bill high centered on the west Second Avenue snow berm in Spokane. Harrington said she was temporary blinded by the sun reflecting off the wet road and found herself atop the snow. Spokane police warn that trying to drive over snow berms can often result in damage or embarrassment.

DFO: I received the following note from a Spokane Berry Picker: “I was wondering if anyone has talked about the pot holes now that the snow plows have revealed them? I hit one on Friday at 5:30, along with five other cars at the same time. When the tow truck driver arrived for me, he said there was a similar multiple car pot hole hit on Market. (Mine was on Third at the Freya on-ramp). So, the city MIGHT reimburse me the $175 to replace my rim and realign my car. I wonder if the budget will be able to cover all the pot hole victims, if they are happening like procreating rabbits.

Question: Which community has worse driving conditions on city streets: Coeur d’Alene or Spokane? (BTW, you HBOers in other communities are welcome to throw in your 2 cents.)

News Spoof: Senator’s In The Ladies Room …

Larry Craig Accosts Women To Help Boost Image/CAP News

Tongue firmly cheeked: “We received a number of complaints in a short period of time that an individual was harassing and trying to hit on females in the airport bathroom,” said Minneapolis police department spokesman Edward Ballou. “Upon our arrival, we noticed said individual, who we later determined to be Sen. Craig, saying inappropriate things and handing out his business card to any woman within reach.”

More Spoof: “In terms of strategy, the ploy, at least initially, seems to be having some positive influence on Craig’s approval numbers.”

Hat Tip: Jill Kuraitis, New West Boise

Frito Ray Brings Chips Thru Wind, Snow, Night

Barry Kough/Lewiston Tribune, AP

My brother, Frito Ray, who delivers Frito-Lay chips from Spokane to Pullman, faces these conditions four times per week. Here, wind blown snow covers US Highway 95 Wednesday near Genesee (between Moscow and Lewiston). Deer, elk and moose have been moving to lower elevations because of heavy snow in the mountains along the St. Joe River, and a recent kill shows wolves have been quick to follow. Story here and here.

DIL Editor: ‘Lying Liars’ & PC Truth

All right, maybe the problem is the liberal medial outlets such as MSNBC, but it is also conservative Fox News, where the parade of preening, prattling, fawning co-anchors is non-stop from morning till night, each one more self-important than the next. It’s true that Fox has a wider variety of guests on the air than MSNBC, but it doesn’t matter because ultimately all of the news and all of the discussion on these “news” networks is pre-digested pablum that is intended to prevent you from having an original thought. All that matters is ratings, as Bill O’Reilly has observed. And ratings means that we get such Howard Beale-inspired claptrap as “body language” analysis of newsmakers and sweeps-week segments on “Spring Break Girls Gone Wild”/Frank Mieli, Kalispell Daily Inter Lake. More here.

Question: Which media news source do you trust most?

HBO @ Noon: Send In The Clowns?

“My wonderful wife had this insane clown visit me yesterday,” e-mails JimmyMAC. “For the record, I hate clowns. I hate them and they scare me. This one was truly creepy. Buddy just happened to stop by around 3 p.m. yesterday and took the attached pictures. That makes him an accomplice. No one is innocent.”

Question: Do you love or hate clowns?

SteveS: Another SR Name Signing Coming Soon

re: SR hires Rebecca Mack

Oh, and we’ll be announcing another “name” signing soon. Sometimes it seems like college “letter of intent” day around here. Speaking of which, one of Rebecca’s sons, who played for Lewis and Clark High School’s championship team this year, signed a letter of intent yesterday to play football at Western Washington/Editor Steve Smith.

DFO: I don’t have a clue re: who this might be. Fuhrman? Randy Shaw? Sunshine Shelly?

Question: Who do you think is going to be the next name signing as the SR expands further into multimedia?

HBO’s AM Headlines — 2/7/08

Kathy Plonka/Spokesman-Review

Judd Reed of the Idaho Transportation Department talked about the salt brine machine in Coeur d’Alene on Tuesday. Story by Meghann M. Cuniff/SR here.

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, Spokesman-Review

*Duncan lawyers seek sentence delay: Defense team trying to find ‘social history expert’ for hearing/Rebecca Boone, AP — I know that even murderous scum, like Joseph Edward Duncan III deserve to be represented. But I wonder how his defense attorneys live with themselves by trying to delay an overdue sentencing — now that Duncan’s admitted guilt?

*Citylink ridership growing: Success of bus route makes interstate link a possibility/Amy Cannata, Prairie Voice/SR — Hat Tip to the Coeur d’Alene Indian Tribe, for Councilwoman Dixie Reid and other far-sighted individuals who made Citylink happen.

*Post Falls approves impact fee hikes/Brian Walker, Coeur d’Alene Press — Government defies that old axiom: What goes up, must come down. In the case of user fees, it keeps going up and up.

*Fuel tax pacts clear panel: Agreements with four tribes go to Senate/Betsy Russell, Spokesman-Review — Only a myopic Indian basher, like Rep. Dick Harwood, R-St. Maries, would be against a common-sense bill like this one.

*Caucus attendance thrills Democrats/Conor Christofferson, Bonner County Daily Bee — Bonner County is Obama country? Don’t let TUBOB hear you say that.

*It’s rural Idaho, folks, we’re going to have winter weather/Herb Huseland, Prairie Voice — Herb, there’s winter and then there’s WINTER. This is WINTER. Even oldtimers are tired of this one.

Johnny Depp? Shoveling Snow? In Rathdrum?

The two young men disappeared into the house for a few minutes, but were soon climbing onto the roof, dressed in proper snow-removal attire. “Mom,” said Chris, smiling hugely, “this is Johnny Depp – he’s going to help us clean off the roof.” A hot flash hit with the blast of a steel furnace. I grew shorter as the snow beneath my feet melted. My tongue stuck to the roof of my mouth and I gaped like a Biggest Loser contestant at a Big Mac … with fries … and a chocolate milkshake. Unfazed, my husband welcomed him. I nodded, dumbstruck. The men stood uneasily for a couple of minutes until Johnny said, “Well, let’s move this snow.” They dug in. Johnny Depp was shoveling snow off my roof – my snow!/Mary Jane Honegger, Prairie Voice, SR. More here.

Question: What do you make of Mary Jane’s story?

CPD Blue Towing Away Snowed-In Vehicles

Item: Snow tows: Hefty fees await vehicles left on Cd’A streets/Marc Stewart, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: Police have tagged more than 55 vehicles parked on city streets and if they’re not moved within 48 hours, they will be towed and impounded. Police Chief Wayne Longo asked citizens to dig their cars and trucks out before they’re removed. The city law says cars must be moved every 24 hours.

Question: Can you give Sgt. Christie Wood and CPD Blue the directions to a snowed-in vehicle that’s been disrupting traffic in your ‘hood?

ITD Assessing H95 From Lewiston To Moscow

The Idaho State Police is requiring for safe travel, all Tractor/Trailer units to have chains on between Moscow and Lewiston. The road conditions in this area are so poor ISP is asking the Idaho Transportation department to shut the road down. The Transportation department is evaluating the road at this time.

In The Know: Non-sense Reigns Since Taggart Got Boot

The main problem with the County is that last bunch of Commissioners got rid of Tom Taggart the County Administrator. What a bonehead move. Now the legal staff is trying to run the show (name any smooth running orgainzation ran by a lawyer) and the Commissioners sit and worry about how many reams of paper the Assessor is using. The commission can work if all they have to worry about is policy and stategic vision. What we have now is non-sense.

In The Know

Snopes: False Alarm On Cell Phone Registry

It’s been awhile since I’ve been fooled by an urban legend. Luckily, Holly/UI Argonaut checked in this p.m. and provided a link that debunks this release here. Sorry. (Sound of 40 lashes with wet noodle in background) — dfo

False Alarm Making The Rounds: All cell phone numbers are being released to telemarketing companies tomorrow and you will start to receive sale calls. You will be charged for these calls. To prevent this, call the following number from your cell phone: 888-382-1222. It is the National DO NOT CALL list. It will only take a minute of your time It blocks your number for five (5) years. You must call from the cell phone number you want to have blocked. You cannot call from a different phone number.

New Mexico State 88, Idaho 49

New Mexico State forward Justin Hawkins (1) falls over Idaho’s Jordan Brooks as he attempts to grab a rebound Wednesday during the first half of the college basketball game in Las Cruces, N.M. New Mexico State won easily 88-49. ESPN game and box score here. (AP Photo/Las Cruces Sun-News, Shari Vialpando)

Parting Shot: SR Hires Rebecca Mack

In this 2003 file photo, then KXLY 920 news co-anchor Rebecca Mack gets ready to queue program director Bud Nameck.

I am really pleased to announce that Rebeccca Mack, late of the Fuhrman/Mack show on KGA, will join us beginning Friday, taking over the Hard 7 column in 7 and the associated mini-blog on Those of you familiar with Rebecca from her talk-show days know she has opinions and doesn’t hesitate to express them. She will be as fiercely independent as Hard 7’s founding writer, Frank Sennett. Though most of us know Rebecca from radio, it turns out she is an excellent writer, too. Furthermore, she brings additional radio experience to our newsroom that I hope we can tap when we launch our radio initiative this spring/Steve Smith, News Is A Conversation. More here.

Question: What do you think of the SR’s recent moves in hiring Dick Haugen, Rebecca Mack and announcing plans to have a radio/Webcast program?

SR: Mebbe Ron Paul’s Lucky He Isn’t Noticed

While it’s true that the good news about a long-shot candidacy gets relatively scant attention, it’s also true that bad news won’t be treated to the daily media inquiries faced by those with a realistic chance of winning. Take, for instance, the issue of bigoted comments that appeared in newsletters under Ron Paul’s name. In early January, the New Republic magazine dug up some editions from the late 1980s and early 1990s and printed much of what was written/Spokesman-Review. More here.

Question: Are you bugged that the media don’t take Ron Paul’s candidacy seriously?

APhoto of the Day w/Top Cutlines — 2/6/08

A young girl runs through a flock of snow geese feeding in a Richmond, British Columbia, Canada, field near the Vancouver International Airport Sunday. You write the cutline. (Canadian Press, AP/Richard Lam)

Top Cutlines

1. There was a young girl who loved geeses/She chased them through woods and through treeses/They flew up in the sky/Flew higher than high/Got blown out a jet turbine in pieces/Tubob.

2. The young Canadian girl thought the geese were calling her a name as they took off with their signature call: “Honk, eh?”/JohnA.

3. A fluttered response is sparked when Canadian geese hear that the Washington presidential primaries are “for the birds”/LynnS.

HM: Idaho Escapee

Ex-CDA Superintendent To Challenge Phil Hart

A few minutes ago, former Coeur d’Alene School District superintendent David Rawls announced his candidacy for the House District 3 seat now held by state Rep. Phil Hart, R-Athol. “I intend to campaign vigorously, meet with the citizens of the 3rd District and listen to you about your issues and in the months ahead obtain your vote in the May 27th primary election,” Rawls said at a press conference at Hayden City Hall. “I believe I have the skills and knowledge needed to provide the necessary leadership for government to be both efficient and effective.” You can read his entire announcement here.

Slight Detour: A Bunch Of Crows Sittin’ Around

My mother encouraged me to go, even if she does have her own inexperienced opinion of what happens at a caucus (“a bunch of crows sittin’ around”). She’s not far off in her assessment, but the crows had no beaks. Instead, they were two-legged, short, tall, old, young, orange-haired, white haired, hair impaired, hearing impaired, loud, wealthy, wealth-impaired, opinionated, and enthusiastic for their individual candidates. They mostly sat around and made a lot of noise, so Mother was pretty accurate on that count. I don’t know if I will ever attend another caucus because there wasn’t really a lot of organized action during the three hours I sat in my aisle seat in the raucous Obama section at the theater. I kept saying it appeared to me to be disorganized chaos, to which most people agreed/Marianne Love, Slight Detour. More here.

Question: Any other insights re: last night’s caucuses?

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 2/6/08

Christopher Anderson/SR, AP

United States Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker navigating the snowy streets of Spokane, Wash., Tuesday. Crocker was downtown for a meeting with The Spokesman-Review newspaper editorial board. Story here.

Spotlight: College football Letter of Intent Day/Dave Trimmer, SR.

1. With Super Tuesday over, the Democratic presidential campaign is shifting gears toward Washington state. Michelle Obama is coming to Spokane on Friday, and there are rumors that former President Bill Clinton will be here the same day here/Jim Camden, Spin Control 2.0.

2. Jim Mora will succeed Seattle Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren, beginning with the 2009 season. After serving as the assistant head coach and defensive backs coach for one more season, the 46-year-old Mora will be promoted here/AP.

3. For the first time, former priest Patrick O’Donnell, a central figure in the Spokane Catholic Diocese sex abuse case, is confessing his sins and offering an apology for his actions here/KXLY.

4. SR Blogs: If you gave a moose an ambassador/Thuy Nguyen, Daily Briefing; Ah, where did all that color go?/Dan Webster, Movies & More; Korma ingredients/Lori Hutson, Fresh Sheet; Report from the trenches/David Laird, News Is A Conversation; and Ferris receiver signs with WSU/Nick Eaton, Sportslink.

5. IMHO: Help Larry win, or avoid conviction/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune; Reality check/Dogwalk Musings; Canyon County caucus observations and ramblings/MountainGoat Report; A bunch of cows sitting around/Marianne Love, Slight Detour; Every winter needs a nail/Ralph Bartholdt, The Skinny On North Idaho.

6. News Roundup: Customer smashes 6-pack over head of would-be robber/Statesman; 2-year-old dies at caregiver’s home/KTVB; Voters reject Idaho State U arena bond/KTVB; Seahawks broadcaster Moon pleads innocent to DUI/Seattle PI; and Caldwell school district gets dress code overhaul/2NewsTV.

Orbusmax Special: Oregon editor fired after accusations of rape here.

HBO’s AM Headlines — 2/6/08

Conor Christofferson/Bonner County Daily Bee, AP

Bonner County Democrats pack the lobby of the Panida Theater on Tuesday in Sandpoint as more than 600 people crowded the theater during the Bonner County Democratic caucus.

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, Spokesman-Review

*A record falls: Snowiest winter in Coeur d’Alene/Meghann M. Cuniff, Spokesman-Review — Cool, we have the record; now, can we move on to spring?

*Cheesecake dream turns sour/Rick Thomas, Coeur d’Alene Press — I certainly didn’t help matters. I never ate there.

*Legislation addresses URD sharing: Clark gets initial approval for urban renewal bill in House tax committee/David Goins, Coeur d’Alene Press — Dare I say that this is a common-sense tweak that’s needed in the state URD laws?

*Met investors win key reversal: Judge says he’ll allow auditor suit to proceed/John Stucke, Spokesman-Review — Justice is trying its darndest to prevail over well-heeled scalawags and attorneys (pardon the redundancy).

*Chase suspect racks up felonies/Keith Kinnaird, Bonner County Daily Bee — Those chase scenes might look cool in the movies. But they rarely work out for the bad guys in real life.

Missoula Picks Paul, Maverick 2nd In Montana

Missoula County Republican caucus voters threw their support to maverick presidential candidate Ron Paul on Tuesday night, giving the Texas congressman a three-vote victory over former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. An organized youth vote filled Missoula’s empty precincts, helping Paul win 45 of the 97 votes cast at the caucus. Romney won 42 votes, while Sen. John McCain of Arizona had seven and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee had three/Chelsi Moy, Missoulian. More here.

Related: Romney wins Montana GOP caucus, Paul strong second/New West

Question: What’s Ron Paul’s strong showing say about Montanans?

Kootenai County Caucus Faces

Jesse Tinsley Photos/SR

Dawn Bignall, center, recites the Pledge of Allegiance witht he crowd in the North Idaho College gymnasium at the 2008 Idaho Democratic Caucus Tuesday. Several hundred people turned out in snowy weather to take part.

Katia Cooper uses signs to attract attention to her candidate, Barack Obama, in the North Idaho College gymnasium at 2008 Idaho Democratic Caucus Tuesday. Cooper, originally from Honduras, became a U.S. citizen in January. “It’s too bad that not many U.S. citizens understand how important this is,” she said.

Vanessa Trudeau, center, of Hayden squeezes up to the registration table in the crowded lobby of the North Idaho College gymnasium to get into the 2008 Idaho Democratic Caucus Tuesday.

Another Big System Set To Hit Today

Yet another snow storm is headed to the region and the National Weather Service has issued a winter storm advisory for Spokane and a winter storm warning for Coeur d’Alene, the Palouse and north Idaho Panhandle. The expected accumulations range from 3 to 5 inches in Spokane to as much as 16 inches in the mountains.

Beth’s Adventures: Leaving Wintry CDA In Nick Of Time

Winters in the Idaho Panhandle are rough. Not necessarily due to the precipitation; depending on the presence or absence of El Nino, some winters we have two days of snow and others we have 120. No, it’s the gray skies that have been my nemesis. Coeur d’Alene has a lake that is the source of much of the area’s beauty (and, as a result, the recent influx of Californians), but also the clouds that hover over the area for most of the winter. Being one of those folks who suffers from Seasonal Affective Disorder, this makes winter doubly tough for me. After a few days of slate gray skies, I’m both homicidal and suicidal. So this winter I finally decided I’d had enough, and headed south for the winter. To sunny Florida, land of beaches and retirees and - sunshine. And it’s been glorious/Beth’s Adventures. More here.

Question: Do you begrudge snowbirds their freedom to get out of North Idaho as winter sets in?

Hat Tip: Family Phil

Obama Rocks Idaho

Item: Obama landslide in Idaho/Betsy Russell, SR

More Info: In Ada County alone, 8,290 lined up in frigid weather to file into the Qwest Arena, best known for hosting Idaho Steelheads hockey games. The last Idaho Democratic presidential caucus in 2004 drew about 5,000 statewide. … Bonner County’s Democratic caucus filled the Panida Theater in Sandpoint to capacity; all observers except the media were asked to leave to make space in the 550-seat theater, where Obama supporters dominated. … In Kootenai County, more than 1,200 people packed into the North Idaho College gym, and the vote was overwhelmingly for Obama. Both Kootenai and Ada counties ran out of ballots midway through and had to send volunteers off to make more copies.

Question: Can Idaho Dems seize on their enthusiasm for Obama to win an important state race like the 1st congressional district one?

Kootenai County Demo Caucus Results


Hat Tip: Dan of the County

Super Tuesday Wild Card/Tuesday — 2/5/08

You can keep track of the Super Tuesday results nationwide by clicking on that CNN link above this post. Also, I want to call your attention to the group blog that Jill Kuraitis’ New West Boise site is maintaining tonight. You can use it to chat with D’s involved in caucuses in other parts of the state. Finally, I’m going to bail a little early tonight (sorry, no “Best of the Friends’ Blogs”) because I have a personal obligation that will tie me up until 9:30 or so. Yeah, I know, bad timing. I’ll check back in here as soon as I can. As you can see by the Scanner Traffic post, it’s slick out there. So be careful. Now, for your Super Tuesday Wild Card …

Eye On Boise: Sen. Goedde’s Getting Married

Sen. John Goedde, R-Coeur d’Alene, says a rumor that’s hot and heavy up in Coeur d’Alene is that he’s getting married and moving away, and it’s not true. Goedde, the Senate education committee chairman and a fourth-term lawmaker, is getting married. He and fiancée Terri White have set the date for June 16/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Scanner Traffic: Slick Roads Causing Havoc Again

5:16 p.m., non-injury accident partially blocking Appleway, west of 4th, involving SUV and plow.

4:45 p.m., report of someone choking at the Pizza Hut on Appleway.

4:13 p.m., a silver Durango has crashed on Interstate 90 at milepost 8.

3:53 p.m., car has hit a guardrail on Interstate 90 (milepost 32); Kellogg Ambulance notified.

3:49 p.m., vehicle wreck blocking traffic on Northwest Boulevard.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, 91, Beatles Guru, RIP

The Beatles John Lennon, left, Paul McCartney, center background, Ringo Starr, second from right, and George Harrison, right, join the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, center, as they arrive by train at Bangor, Wales, United Kingdom, to participate in a weekend of meditation in this file photo dated Aug. 26, 1967. Story here.

Stapilus: Sali, 5 Other GOPers Facing $$$ Struggle

re: Six GOP lawmakers stuck in money slump/Josh Kraushaar, Politico

“According to the newly-filed year-end reports, Sali has raised $297,802 in this cycle, and has $100,023 in cash on hand - a tiny sliver of what his campaign spent in 2006. Comparable numbers for Democratic candidate Walt Minnick are $410,353 and $311,168, and for Larry Grant $65,123 and $40,818. (No filings were listed for the third contender, Rand Lewis.)”/Randy Stapilus, Ridenbaugh Press. More here.

Question: Realistically, how would you rate the chance by either Minnick or Larry Grant to unseat incumbent Bill Sali in Red Idaho>?

Butterfly Moment: Explaining ‘Stripper’ To 6YO — Not

This morning one of the djs decided to discuss how she wants to take pole dancing lessons. And went into how pole dancing is not stripping. But how she has always been fascinated by strippers and blah blah blah strippers and yadda yadda yadda strippers. And before I could change the station, Adam said, “Mom, what’s a stripper?” “Umm, it’s not something you need to know about today,” I hedged. “But mom, what is a stripper?” I thought for a second about telling him, but how do you describe a stripper to a six year old. It probably would have been okay because he would have thought it was extremely gross/A Butterfly Moment. More here.

Question: What would you have done if you were A Butterfly Moment?

KevinR’s Predictions re: Idaho, Super Tuesday

“Obama stuns the nation the way the Giants and BSU Broncos have, and beats Hillary by a thin margin. If he wins tonight, he’ll win eventually win the nomination. If he loses tonight, there will be lots of talk about early voters and he would have won if they had waited or could change their vote”/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman (who will be live-blogging Boise caucuses here). More predictions below.

Question: Your predictions — state or national — about today’s primaries/caucuses?

To The Victors Go The Parades

New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning celebrates during a Super Bowl parade in New York this morning. Manning was the most valuable player as the Giants defeated the New England Patriots, 17-14, in Sunday’s National Football League championship game. (AP Photo/Gary He)

Arpie Needs Help To Finish 10 Reasons To Caucus

1. The caucus will be a break from shoveling.
2. I get to vote for someone who is smarter than I am.
3. Blizzard? What blizzard?
4. After being cooped up all winter, I’ll get a chance to actually talk to other people.
5. The choices are black and white.
6. I get to go to a political meeting with the best ever chance that Larry Spencer won’t be there blathering on about some amazingly inane point.
7. I’ll get to watch and see who my friends and neighbors are voting for.
8. I get to help Barack the world!

Question: Can anyone add a 9th or 10th reason?

New York Loves A Sports Parade

Lauren Giovanniello, 6, waits for the start of the parade celebrating the New York Giants’ Super Bowl XLII victory this morning in New York. (AP Photo/Gary He)

Trib: Jorgenson Stands Up To Ed Board Whitewash

What’s this, a Republican state senator does not think the Idaho Legislature should look the other way from incompetence on the Republican State Board of Education? Three cheers for Mike Jorgenson. Jorgenson, R-Hayden, says members of the appointed board should have to answer for what its current president, Milford Terrell, admits became a “dysfunctional family.” “I’m not going to be satisfied until two or three members of the board are removed,” Jorgenson says. “This is not something that should be just swept under the rug”/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Are You Ready For Some More Snow?

Item: Winter storm charging toward region: Some areas above 2000 feet to get up to 6 inches of snow/Thomas Clouse, Spokesman-Review

DFO: I shoveled snow off my garage roof last night, just in case. There was more up there than I thought. Buried the driveway again. Neighbor had to help me down the ladder because the roof was too slick for me to get down by myself afterward. My shoulder’s aching a little today. But it’s all good otherwise. I don’t want to think about shoveling the rest of the roof on my two-story house.

Question: What’s your biggest headache as you try to keep up with snow accumulation this winter?

Sad But True: Cops Can’t Stop The Snow

For once, I agree with a cop. Why on earth would anyone call the Police out on a “snow complaint?” What, arrest the snowman? Radar the speed of falling flakes? Handcuff the icesickle? Some morons were quoted in Post Falls after the recent shooting wherein they demanded that the Police go around afterwords and discuss with everyone in the neighborhood what happened. In order for a Police State to take root, we first have to become a society of passive Oprah-ized crap-your-own-pants-and-blame-it-on-your-mom idiots. We now expect the Police to do something about the snow? Good Grief.

Sad But True

Eye Opener: Hillary Or Barack Or Mitt Or John Or …

Above, Republican presidential hopeful, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., right, responds to a question as Republican presidential hopeful, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, left, during the Republican Presidential Debate in Boca Raton, Fla. in this Jan. 24 file photo. Below, Democratic presidential hopefuls Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., right, and Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., joke at the end of a Democratic presidential debate in Los Angeles, in this Jan. 31 file photo. ABC News will broadcast five hours of live primary coverage on Super Tuesday as voters in nearly half the country go to the polls tomorrow. CBS is devoting two hours of prime-time to the election, with separate live versions for the East and West Coasts. NBC will do one hour in prime-time. The cable news networks plan wall-to-wall coverage. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson,file)

Question: Whom do you want to be most successful on Super Tuesday?/WorldNetDaily

1. Hillary Clinton
2. Barack Obama
3. Mike Huckabee
4. Alan Keyes
5. John McCain
6. Ron Paul
7. Mitt Romney
8. None of these clowns, a plague on all their houses
9. Other

For the WorldNetDaily news report, click here.

Wild Card/Monday — 2/4/08

I guess I should tell you that the public discussion re: the proposed SR newsroom ethics rules attracted no one to our Coeur d’Alene office. Dunno why. Mebbe you folks are satisfied with the draft rules. Or you’re confident that we’ll do the right thing in regulating ourselves. Or you don’t care. I’m not complaining. I’m simply stating what happened. No hard feelings here. However, I’ll feel lonely if I’m the only person who attends the HBO Blogfest ‘08 on Saturday, Feb. 16. Now, for your evening Wild Card …

Far Corner: Lessons Learned From Life

At The Far Corner, Paula Davenport shares lessons from life she’s learned during her 55 Groundhog’s Days:

*In high-stakes poker, sometimes you have to be willing to lose everything to win.
*Kids are far more intuitive than they’re given credit for.
*Follow your instincts.
*Travel is the best teacher.
*It’s a full-time job managing yourself — let alone anyone else.
*If you’re lucky enough to work at something you love, enjoy the hell out of it. If not, find a really cool hobby.
*You’re always the same age inside.
More here

Questions: What lessons have you learned?

HBO’s Best of the Local Blogs — 2/4/08

Kerri Thoreson/OnLocation North Idaho

“Julianne Hough, two-time champion of the hit show ‘Dancing with the Stars,’ came dancing home to Idaho this weekend,” posts Kerri Thoreson/OnLocation North Idaho. “Shown with her grandparents, Colleen and Bob Hough, Julianne performed a dance number and her soon-to-be-released single at North Idaho College’s Schuler Performing Arts Center to a packed house.” More here.

Spotlight: Granati provides a link to the 2008 Super Bowl XLII commercials here.

*Bay Views sez immigrants should beware that a winter like the 2007-08 variety comes around once every 10 years or so here.

*Dogwalk Musings suggests it’s time for Repub Mike Huckabee and Demo John Edwards to shuffle off to Buffalo or wherever they’re from here.

*A photo by JeanC’s Cat House And Shooting Society is going to be featured by Flickr’s NewWest Network on Wednesday here.

HBO Blog Numbers (for Jan. 27-Feb. 2, 2008): 58607 page-views and 34,728 unique views.

Meanwhile, Arch Druid shares thoughts on Ron Paul’s old newsletters here; Tumblewords has her doubts here; As The Lake Churns updates us on Priest Lake’s annual snowshoe tournament here; From A Simple Mind misses the noon whistle here; Live, Love, Laugh, Hope finds a life lesson in snowflakes here; Otis G remembers his own personal Elvis here; Silver Valley Girl celebrates her first blogiversary here; and Mrs. Mac Energetic takes to the roof to shovel here.

Judge: Duncan Evidence Won’t Be Suppressed

A federal judge has rejected motions by Joseph Duncan’s defense attorneys to suppress evidence seized from Duncan’s vehicle, which he was driving when he was found with young Shasta Groene, the only survivor of Duncan’s bloody attack on her family. U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge cited numerous reasons for rejecting the motion, including a major one: Duncan’s red 2005 Jeep Cherokee was stolen, so he had no legal right to object to its search/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

There’s Always Someone Worse Off

Linn County Sheriff’s Deputy Beth Miller investigates a snowed-in home in Idanha, Ore., Sunday. Deputies along with Linn County Search and Rescue dug out driveways in the small Cascade Mountain community. The county earlier delcared a state of emergency for the town after more than five-feet of snow dumped on the area within a few days. (AP Photo/Albany Democrat-Herald, Mark Ylen)

A Matter Of Opinion: Underground Power

In the ‘50s, while still impoverished from the aftermath of World War II, Europe bit the bullet and mandated power lines be underground. How much longer are we, the supposed richest, most powerful country in the world, expected to put up with this Third World system of unreliable power supply? The loss of life, property damage, economic hardship, not to mention sheer bull-headed inconvenience, is intolerable/Roger Slater, Mica
S-R file photo

Question: Would you be willing to pay the up-front cost of having mandatory underground power lines?

Stow Picked To Fill Magistrate Post

James Stow was selected to be Kootenai County’s next magistrate Friday afternoon. The 43-year-old Bonner County chief deputy will replace Robert Burton, who is retiring at the end of February after 17 years on the bench. Stow edged out six other finalists including Barry Black, Dennis Reuter, Anna Eckhart, Scott Nass, Robert Caldwell and Rudy Verschoor. It was Stow’s third attempt at becoming a judge/Marc Stewart, Coeur d’Alene Press.

Huckleberries Best of the INorthwest — 2/4/08

Dan Pelle/Spokesman-Review

Chris Mattos (left) and Brody Voge of the Juventus 93 U-14 soccer team from Vancouver, Washington get in a snowball fight as part of their pre-game warmup before playing in a State Cup game against the River City Steeler of Spokane, at Plantes Ferry Park Sunday. It took nearly 3 days to clear the field to make it playable. Story here.

1. A 32-year-old Bellevue man is being held in the Ada County Jail after hitting a Boise police officer in the face with an icy snowball near 6th and Main early Sunday morning here/Idaho Statesman.

2. Thomas S. Monson has been chosen as the 16th president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the church said Monday here/Idaho Statesman.

3. A Depression-era law requiring 95 percent of workers on state projects to be “bonafide Idahoans” could slow renovation of the capitol building and is subject to a repeal effort here/KTVB.

4. SR Blogs: Throwing tantrums in public/Lisa P., Parents Council; Brown, Marr to endorse Obama/Rich Roesler, Eye On Olympia; A freezer experiment/Lori Hutson, Fresh Sheet; Super Bowl hangover/ Thuy Nguyen, Daily Briefing; and Google testing new system/Tom Sowa, TXT.

5. News Roundup: Pend Oreille River bridge is deteriorating/SR; Gingrich coming to Boise/Statesman; Some Idaho minorities say racism remains/KTVB; Wrong inmate released from Geiger/KXLY; and Avalanche temporarily closes I90 near Lookout Pass/Missoulian.

6. IMHO: Just about everybody wants Obama, McCain/Randy Stapilus, Ridenbaugh Press; Craig case shows why Congress needs oversight/Spokesman-Review; Mayor Mary’s snow job falls on deaf ears/Doug Clark, SR; A big-ticket race in 1st District?/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman; and Cougs can’t make it too fine a point/John Blanchette, SR.

Faces Of Demo Prez Wannabes

Charles Rex Arbogast/AP Photo

Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., receives a hug from Sen. Ted Kennedy, left, as Caroline Kennedy, daughter of former President John F. Kennedy, applauds during a rally at the Meadowlands arena in East Rutherford, N.J., Monday.

Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., coughs as she conducts a roundtable discussion at the Yale Child Study Center in New Haven, Conn., Monday. Generally a stalwart campaigner, Clinton showed signs of strain during the roundtable at one point coughing uncontrollably. “It comes and goes,” she said, wiping her eye and sipping water to get her cough under control.

Question: Will the race between Obama and Clinton tear up the Democratic Party?

HBO’s AM Headlines — 2/4/08

Kathy Plonka/Spokesman-Review

Richard Pruett, front, of Bunkhouse Media of Coeur d’Alene, works to hook up the microphones in the new Coeur d’Alene City Council chambers in the Coeur d’Alene Library on Wednesday. Story here.

*Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, Spokesman-Review

*Huckleberries: Young Sandpoint Repub makes NYTimes by backing Obama/D.F. Oliveria, Handle X, SR — Accomplished Bryant Jones definitely is walking in the footsteps of his late father, former CDA city attorney Jeff Jones, and his mother, Magistrate Debra Heise.

*Landing development brings disappointment to some: Post Falls project falls far short of promise/Brian Walker, Coeur d’Alene Press — Riverstone in CDA has become what Harry Green said Post Falls Landing would be. Sad.

*Getting There: Idaho bill would require chains on/Thomas Clouse, Spokesman-Review — Makes sense.

*Snowy rescue: Guard arrives to dig out Sandpoint schools/Caroline Lobsinger, Bonner County Daily Bee — It’s the 21st century version of sending in the cavalry.

*Handle on Business: Thai Bamboo restaurant opening Thursday/Nils Rosdahl, Spokesman-Review — Sounds like we have a fair share of decent Oriental food places. Now, if we only had a great one …

Online Poll: Presidential Race Enthusiasm

How enthusiastic are you about the presidential election?/Idaho Statesman

*Not very

Eye On Boise: Otter Muzzling Agency Directors?

The Senate State Affairs Committee, which includes top members of leadership from both parties, today grilled Gov. Butch Otter’s budget director, Wayne Hammon, about word that state agency heads have been told not to share information with the Legislature about anything other than those items Otter is recommending in his budget. Senate Majority Leader Bart Davis said he’d heard that an email had gone out to that effect, and that worried him. “I just don’t want there to be any barrier to access to information to help us in doing our job,” Davis told Hammon/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise/SR. More here.

Eye On Boise Roundup: Clinton campaign holds town hall; Senators seek to oust 3 Ed Board members; and Otter insists on 3 things.

Question: Have you been paying much attention to the 2008 Legislature?

More Snow Coming Tuesday

Item: Flurries today, snow certain for Tuesday/Spokesman-Review

More Info: Spokane and Coeur d’Alene have a chance of snow flurries today, but Tuesday has a 100 percent chance of new snow, according to the National Weather Service. Two to 4 inches of snow are expected to fall Tuesday afternoon, said Milt Maas, a NWS meteorological technician.

Question: Are you ready for yet another winter storm?

Eye Opener: Best Super Bowl Ad?

Amy Dearest picked this Planters Nuts ad as one of her favorites from the ones aired during Super Bowl XLII Sunday. In it, an actress made up to look homely with a unibrow drives men crazies with her “perfume” — the scent of Planter’s Peanuts dabbed on her skin. (AP Photo/Planters Nuts)

Question: Which was your favorite Super Bowl ad?

Super Bowl XLII Play of the Day in NY’s 17-14 Win

Manning Eludes New England Tacklers

New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) looks to pass as he avoids a sack from New England Patriots defensive tackle Richard Seymour (93) during the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl XLII football game at University of Phoenix Stadium on Sunday in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Tyree Makes A Circus Catch

New York Giants receiver David Tyree, right, makes a catch against New England Patriots safety Rodney Harrison (37) during the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl XLII football game at University of Phoenix Stadium on Sunday in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Question: What did you think of the game?

Wild Card/Sunday — 2/3/08

My wife and I are headed to Frito Ray’s this afternoon to watch Super Bowl commercials, halftime show, and mebbe some of the game. I’m rooting for New England. Any organization that can produce 3 Super Bowl titles in 6 years, in this era of parity, deserves respect. That, and I’d like to see the Patriots finish the season undefeated. I’d be willing to bet that our friend across the pond (Marmitetoasty) is pulling for the Giants. Her gag reflex probably kicks in whenever she hears us Yanks talk about Patriots. It’s all in good fun. And that’s what I plan to have today. Good fun with family. You can play this Wild Card during timeouts …

Marmitetoasty’s Manifesto: We Brits Want U.S. Back

Britain is Repossessing the U.S.A. To aid in the transition to a British Crown Dependency, the following rules are introduced with immediate effect:

1. You should look up “revocation” in the Oxford English Dictionary.

2. Then look up aluminium, and check the pronunciation guide. You will be amazed at just how wrongly you have been pronouncing it.

3. The letter ‘U’ will be reinstated in words such as ‘colour’, ‘favour’, ‘honour’ and ‘neighbour.’ Likewise, you will learn to spell ‘doughnut’ without skipping half the letters, and the suffix ‘-ize’ will be eliminated. Generally, you will be expected to raise your vocabulary to acceptable levels. (look up ‘vocabulary’).

4. Using the same twenty-seven words interspersed with filler noises such as “like” and “you know” is an unacceptable and inefficient form of communication. There is no such thing as US English. We will let Microsoft know on your behalf. The Microsoft spell- checker will be adjusted to take account of the reinstated letter ‘u’ and the elimination of -ize.

5. July 4th will no longer be celebrated as a holiday.

More here

Idawa: Obama’s Race Has Appeal In Healing Process

Perhaps Avg, but I like to think the opposite. It is because Obama is black that we are so excited. Make no mistake, slavery and racism is an ugly, deep wound in America’s side and we are not yet fully healed. I think, though, that there unspoken sense among the electorate that if we can finally elect a black man as our leader that we will finally take that last step in our healing process. Although I am excited about Obama’s stance on the issues and the judgment he displayed in his refusal to vote for the Iraq war, I am not ashamed to say that I am excited in part because he is a black man running for president.


Popkey: Obama Making “Government Cool Again”

Obama has hooked voters like 26-year-old Cory Steinmetz, who skipped the 2000 and 2004 presidential elections but got up at 6 a.m. Saturday to see Obama in Boise. Steinmetz, 26, an engineer at Micron, came with friends from Boise’s First Baptist Church. On Friday night, he and his wife, Mandy, hosted a young-marrieds group at their home. Around 11 p.m., the group decided to come see Obama. “Everyone has a lot of energy,” Steinmetz said. “And it’s given me the energy to get out and vote.” Steinmetz calls himself a conservative; his favorite in the Republican contest is Rep. Ron Paul. “But the last few years the Republicans haven’t followed my Republican values - small government, humble foreign policy, fiscal conservatism. That’s why I’m here”Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Do you still have faith in the U.S. government or have you become a cynic who believes all parties and politicians are more concerned about power, prestige or money than public service.

Crash @ 41 & Hayden Sends 2 To Hospital

At 3:56 p.m. today, two Kootenai County residents were injured when a Dodge pickup driven by Charles Ferrel, 73, of Rathdrum ran a red light and T-boned a vehicle driven by Traci I. Paola, 33, of Post Falls. Ferrel was southbound on Highway 41 at the time of the accident. Ferrel was uninjured by his wife, Roberta, 65, and Paola were taken to Kootenai Medical Center with injuries. Particulars below

Gonzaga Wins In 2OT, WSU Falls In OT

Washington State guard Taylor Rochestie drives against Stanford forward Brook Lopez in the final second of a college basketball game Saturday at Friel Court in Pullman. Stanford won the game 67-65. (Spokesman-Review/Tyler Tjomsland)

Gonzaga 87, Santa Clara 82 (2OT) here

Stanford 67, WSU 65 (OT) ESPN boxscore here, Sportslink game story and public comments here.

Obama Attracts 13,000 In Boise

Item: Barack Obama wows, inspires crowd of 13,000 at Taco Bell Arena/Idaho Statesman

More Info: Even Barack Obama was surprised by the Idaho crowd. “They told me there weren’t any Democrats in Idaho — that’s what they told me,” he said. “But I didn’t believe them.” About 13,000 Idahoans crammed Taco Bell Arena to see and hear the Democratic presidential candidate this morning — and organizers said many more people were turned away at the door.

Song: Something’s happenin’ here, what it is ain’t exactly clear

Even Repubs Say Obama Visit Good

Item: GOP: Obama hoopla good for Idaho: Republicans say Obama’s visit draws welcome attention, but they’ll still dominate the state/Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman.

More Info: “I’m amazed he’s coming,” said former Gov. Phil Batt, who ran the state from 1995 to 1999. “We’re in the final days of the most important series of votes in this campaign. But it’s good for Idaho. It puts some pep into the political process.”

Question: When will Republican dominance end in Idaho?

Oregon Judge OKs Domestic Partnerships

Item: Oregon judge allows same-sex registrations: Domestic partner law passed in ‘07/Julia Silverman, Associated Press

Item: With the ruling from U.S. District Judge Michael Mosman, Oregon becomes the ninth state to approve spousal rights in some form for gay couples, joining Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Maine, California, Washington and Hawaii. Massachusetts is the only state that allows gay couples to marry.

Question: Do you consider a domestic partner law is an acceptable alternative to gay marriage?

HandleX Hucks: Young Sandpoint R Stumps For Obama

Jeff Jones, the late Coeur d’Alene city attorney, would have been proud of his son, Bryant. The 25-year-old was featured in a New York Times column by Roger Cohen on Monday. Seems the Sandpoint High graduate and Repub sympathizer drove seven hours from Washington, D.C., to Greeleyville, S.C., to campaign for prez wannabe Barack Obama, a black Democrat. Why? “It was his all-encompassing message that got to me,” Jones told the Times. Columnist Cohen held Jones up as one of the young volunteers who are lifting Obama’s campaign. “This young man represents something important,” writes Cohen. “A new generation – for whom race is an issue overcome and baby boomers are old folk fighting arcane battles and post-9/11 thinking must cede to post-post-9/11 creativity – is hungry for hope and willing to come even to places as hopeless as Greeleyville to demonstrate that.” Jones, whose mother is 1st District Magistrate Debra Heise, taught for a year in China after serving as student body president at the University of Vermont. He has voted for George W. Bush once. Now, he’s tired of the Bushes and Clintons. And he has a disquieting message for Repubs: Other Idaho Republican friends also are leaning toward ObamaD.F. Oliveria, Handle Extra/SR. Full Huckleberries column here.

HBO Poll: Super Bowl

What will you enjoy most about the Super Bowl?

1. The game itself
2. Watching New England go undefeated for season
3. Watching New York stop Pats from going undefeated
4. Picking most tasteless commercial
5. Viewing game on Time-Warner cable
6. Frito Ray’s chips
7. Brewskis
8. Friends, family, fellowship
9. Asking your teen-age kids if they know who halftime singer Tom Petty is
10. Other