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Huckleberries Online

Archive for August 2009

Wild Card/Monday — 8.31.09

We’re in the second and final week of signups for local municipal races. The dance cards are filling up with incumbents who plan to seek another term and challengers (in Coeur d’Alene) who want to turn back the hands of progress. Post Falls hasn’t seen a lot of action, other than political unknowns who’d like to seat veteran Mayor Clay Larkin and Mary Ann Henderson’s announced race against incumbent Joe Bodman. I’ll keep an eye on the clerks’ offices and let you know who’s filing and when. Now, for your Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 8.31.09

A man gets a shower after he played soccer in the mud flats at Brunsbuettel near to the North Sea, northern Germany, during the annual mud flats festival on Sunday. (AP Photo/Heribert Proepper)

When Traffic Cops Get Anal

A young friend of mine recently received a $97 ticket (not in this state) for failing to flip on her blinkers for a turn. She received the ticket despite the fact that she was in a turn-only lane. Yeah, she committed a violation. And she figured that she had a ticket coming for all the times she has gone over the speed limit, failed to come to a complete stop, and parked too long in spots. But she still felt the traffic cop was a little anal retentive for nailing her with what amounts to a day’s pay for a relatively minor violation.

Question: Have you received a traffic citation of any kind that you were tempted to tell the officer: Don’t you have something better to do — like solving real crime?

Notes: 10YO Meets ‘Mr. Thirsty’

Katie’s first ever dentist appointment was yesterday.  (Yes, at 10, she’s a little old for a first dental visit, but anxiety issues related to AS kept us from taking her before.)  I expected to have to hold her hand, but she surprised me.  When the nurse called her name, she calmly told me she wanted to go in by herself.  Twenty minutes later, she came out raving about how fun it was to have her mouth rinsed while “Mr. Thirsty”, the suction wand, sucked all the water out.  Two things: 1) How grown up my girl is getting!  I’m so proud of her.  2) Mr. Thirsty is what they called the sucker wand when I was a kid.  I thought that guy would be retired by now.  By the way, no cavities!/Katrina, Notes On A Napkin. More here.

Question: Did/do your kids handle trips to the dentist well? Do you?

PM Headlines — 8.31.09

Grand champion in the “So You Think You Can Text?” text messaging contest Hammond Bradford poses with Phones Plus President Chris Cheeley in front of the Phones Plus 2006 Ferrari F430 Spider F1 convertible. Hammond won a ride in the car as part of his grand prize. Story here 

Question: Are you good at texting?

APhoto Of The Day — 8.31.09

A dance couple prepare to compete in the semi-finals at the 7th Tango Dance World Championship in Buenos Aires, Brazil, Friday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Trust me Mary, I have the tape recorder hidden well and no one will know you are secretly recording their conversation — MikeS.
  • 2. Larry Purvaince demonstrating to CDA Police the proper way to search a female subject — Redman.
  • 3. (tie) It takes two to untango a knot — Nic; and: Trust me, we pull off this “wardrobe malfunction” and we will be famous — Cabbage Boy.
  • HM: KeithinCDA

PM Scanner Traffic — 8.31.09

  • 5:16 p.m. A disabled white station wagon has traffic tied up @ H95 & I-90.
  • 4:55 p.m. A husband has kicked in a door as part of a domestic dispute @ Ramsey & Rocky Road/Rathdrum.
  • 4:32 p.m. 2 female juveniles are being cooperative after being caught at Super 1/Kathleen for possible shoplifting.
  • 4:17 p.m. Man in the downtown Coeur d’Alene area is threatening suicide.
  • More below

Fall Touches Blue Mountains

KeithinCDA brought back some proof that fall’s on the way while hanging out in the Blue Mountains in southeast Washington over the weekend.

Henderson To Challenge Bodman

Betty Ann Henderson of Ponderosa Loop filed her candidacy petition with the Post Falls city clerk’s office this afternoon. She will seek council seat now held by Joe Bodman. Gary Mladjan will serve as her campaign treasurer. Four Ponderosa Loop neighbors signed her petition, along with Mladjan and former legislator Freeman Duncan.

Question: Can Betty Ann Henderson unseat Councilman Bodman?

Local Teen Hurt In Waterfront Attack

A Coeur d’Alene teen was attacked by three men at Independence Point Sunday evening. Dimitrius Peterson, 18, told police that he was with friends on the waterfront when a short, stalky male with a goatee and tan complection asked him for a cigarette. Peterson said the man hit him in the face after he said he didn’t have a cigarette. Reportedly, the two fell to the ground fighting. Then, Peterson said, two friends of the assailant began hitting and kicking him. A taller white male kicked him in the side of the face. The three then drove off in a silver SUV. Peterson required treatment at Kootenai Medical Center afterward/Coeur d’Alene Police report.

Library To Start Book Club

A new book club – supported by a $3,000 grant from the Friends of the Coeur d’Alene Public Library – will meet for the first time at the library, 702 E. Front Ave, on Wednesday, Sept. 23, at 10 a.m. The first book selected for the Public Library Pageturners to discuss is “Worst Hard Times,” by Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Tim Egan. Copies of the book can also be checked out by visiting the Research and Information Desk at the library, said Katie Sayler, current chair of the Library Board of Trustees and an organizer for the book club. Participants who want to make notes in their books or to pass copies on to friends or families can purchase their own copies from other sources/David Townsend, Coeur d’Alene Today. More here.

Question: Do you plan to join the new library book club?

Domestic Partners Foes Make Ballot

A referendum that could overturn Washington state’s “everything but marriage” domestic partnership law has qualified for the November ballot. The secretary of state’s office said Monday that sponsors of Referendum 71 had 121,486 valid petition signatures - enough to put the newly expanded domestic partnership law to a public vote. A secondary check of rejected signatures was not complete, so the number could increase. The new law was supposed to take effect on July 26, but was delayed until the signature count was complete. Now, it won’t take effect unless it is approved in the Nov. 3 election/Seattle Times. More here.

Question: Will Washington voters uphold or overturn the decision by the Washington Legislature to give gay and lesbian couples all the state-provided benefits that married heterosexual couples have?

SM: Who’s Next Teddy, Tip, Mike?

Who is going to follow Ted Kennedy? The bigger than life Senator? The likes of Tip O’Neil, Mike Mansfield.  Sam Huston … whether you like them or not, they were bigger than life. People could name them and not name their own congressperson. It isn’t longevity, because Green, Byrd, Thurmond, Johnson, Pepper, Foley, Wilson and Hatch were/are forces to be reckon with, but not to the point of these men above/Simple Mind.

Question (from Simple Mind): Where will our next bigger than life congress person come from? (It could be a woman … but I kind of doubt it.)

Roundabouts, Anyone?

Vehicles use the roundabout at Hamilton Mason, Liberty Fairfield, and Vinnedge Roads in Fairfield Twp., Butler County, Ohio. Federal transportation officials say roundabouts _ or traffic rotaries _ are catching on across the country as an accident-reducing and motorist-calming alternative to multiple stop signs.  (AP Photo/The Enquirer, Amie Dworecki)

Question: I was a vocal opponent when the city of Coeur d’Alene installed that roundabout @ 4th & Kathleen, north of the Nazarene Church. I thought the city’d made a bad intersection worse. I was wrong. Traffic moves smoothly and safely through the intersection. What do you think of roundabouts?

Press: Minnick Faces Boobirds

The question, called in by Press subscriber George Schultz of Hayden, struck a delightful, derisive chord with the audience. Rep. Walt Minnick, who was hosting the forum on health care, said he understood the sentiment but suggested that the federal government actually does a few things well. Many in the crowd didn’t want to hear that. They booed. They booed again, loudly, when Rep. Minnick, whom The Washington Post recently deemed the most independent-thinking member of Congress, said he thought everybody in the auditorium should hope that our president is successful, for the good of the nation. At one point during Tuesday night’s forum, Minnick was responding to a question when, in mid-sentence, a woman in the front row shouted rudely, “Answer the question!” It’s the only time Rep. Minnick directly addressed a verbal assailant, saying that he was answering the question/Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

Question: What do you expect to see from Walt Minnick, now that he’s held several townhall meetings around his district to discuss the federal health care proposal?

TH: Props To Spencer, Watchdogs

Taryn Hecker: I don’t agree with Spencer on much of anything. Including his interpretation that his mullet isn’t a mullet. But I do appreciate the Spencers in this community who speak their minds and are a perennial pain in the arse of our local bureaucrats if for no other reason than to keep them on their toes. With fewer, make that close to nil, investigative reporters left somebody needs to be serving as watchdogs over local government. Gotta give props to Spencer for watchdogging. Even if he’s only on the money some of the time.

Question: What do you think of Taryn’s contention that watchdogs like Spencer benefit their communities, even when they are off base some/much of the time?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 8.31.09

Two young stallions play together at the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range south of Billings, Mont. This week, federal officials had planned to thin by more than a third a wild horse herd that roams a mountain range along the Montana-Wyoming border. But the roundup that was suppose to begin today has been delayed until Thursday. Story here. (AP Photo/Pryor Mountain Wild Mustang Center, Matt Dillon)

Noon: Obama Hate Is Creepy — SA

Sara E. Anderson/f-words: I truly think all the Obama-hate is creepy, but I am sick to DEATH of demanding apologies from people.  It’s really just self-congratulation, “I’m sure glad I didn’t say something that horrible/stupid.  Now admit how bad you are!!”

Question: Obviously, some individuals “hated” Clinton and others hated Bush, if that’s the right word to use. Now, some are turning their anger on Obama. Why do Americans love to hate their presidents?

AM Scanner Traffic — 8.31.09

  • 11:54 a.m. 2-vehicle crash partially blocking 9th & Best/CdA.
  • 10:27 a.m. Motorist reports that metal steps are lying on w/b lanes of I-90 @ M/P 36 (Cataldo Mission).
  • 9:17 a.m. A vehicle has hit a tree on Highway 41 @ M/P 30. Bonner County deputies have taken one person into custody.
  • 8:58 a.m. There’s a strong smell of gas on I-90 @ M/P 34 (Big Fern Creek).
  • 8:49 a.m. Two deer are dead alongside I-90 @ 15th Street exist/CdA.
  • 8:41 a.m. A roofing contractor reports theft of fuel @ Chelsea Court/Hayden.
  • 8:33 a.m. Resident complains that a young man w/a backpack on a bike is selling kids books door-to-door. But a cop responds that he has obtained a permit to do so.
  • 8:28 a.m. Abandoned paddleboat is found on the Spokane River @ Harbor Island
  • 8:01 a.m. A possible burglary in progress @ Susie’s Townhouse on Government Way turns out to be an employee who set off an alarm.
  • 8:00 a.m. A Fed Ex truck w/a possible broken axle is stalled on e/b I-90 @ Spokane Street/Post Falls.

As We Go Down To The River To Pray

Baptism candidates Camera Pigg, 10, left, and Amber VanHorn, 23, wade out into Two River Lake waiting their turn to be baptized at Corinthian Baptist Church’s old-fashioned outdoor baptism service Sunday in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/the tennessean, Shelley Mays)

Question: I have baptism covered. I was sprinkled as an infant and then dunked in a pond as an adult. Have you been baptized? Were you sprinkled or dunked? Were you baptized in a church baptistry or outdoors in a river, lake, or pond?

WH: Clunkers & Other Bad Ideas

But Cash for Clunkers appears to be another one of those constitutionally dubious programs Congress passes and adds to the deficit. The U.S. Constitution talks about regulating interstate commerce. As others have pointed out, Cash for Clunkers made the U.S. government a participant in commerce. I asked Minnick’s spokesman, John Foster, to tell me the constitutional justification of Cash for Clunkers. “I didn’t ask Walt that, and I am not a constitutional lawyer, so I’m not qualified to answer,” Foster said. “But I think, personally, that the 316 votes in the House and 60 votes in the Senate for the program show that most members of Congress were comfortable with the constitutionality”/Wayne Hoffman, Idaho Freedom Foundation. More here.

Question: Do you think the Cash For Clunkers program was worth the money handed out?

Spirit Lake Fireboat Puts On Show

“The Spirit Lake fireboat put on quite a show for those along the shore at Spirit Lake’s Silver Beach while performing an equipment check on what might very well have been the last summer day with temperatures in the ‘90s,” posts Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho.

Question: How would you rate the weather in North Idaho/Inland Northwest this summer (on scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being awful)?

HBO Poll: How Will UI Vandals Do?

In five days, Idaho football coach Robb Akey will unveil an on-the-field product that figures to be the most polished since his arrival three years ago. The defense has never been so rangy and athletic. A stocked supply of skill players is starting to come of age. The defensive line finally has more than a smattering of able (and thick) bodies.Yes, everything points to a much healthier program than the one Akey inherited after Dennis Erickson’s swift departure in 2006. Nevertheless, this fact remains: All the anecdotal progress means nothing unless the Vandals start churning out wins/Josh Wright, SR. More here.

  • Weekend Poll: 79% of 108 respondents said Rex Rammell’s comments re: Obama hurt Idaho Republicans because they didn’t denounce them strongly enough. .Results here.

KH: Age Cometh w/Discounts

Friends of mine - older than I - have assured me there are benefits to growing older. But I never experienced this myself until recently, when I went to a movie and realized I was eligible for the senior citizen discount. I was all set to pay the $8.50 regular charge when I looked at the price list and saw that, based on the fact that I am 55, I needed to pay only $6. How thrilling. I paid the ticket, bought a soda and strutted into the theater as if I’d just found money on the sidewalk. Then it hit me. When I told the ticket clerk I was eligible for the senior discount, she simply nodded and took my money. She did not even ask to see my identification. I don’t know quite how to take that. Instead of money on the sidewalk it turned out to be more like Monopoly money/Kathy Hedberg, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question (for Seasoned Citizens among us): Do you take senior citizen discounts?

Spencer Rips UI Snow-load Study

The University of Idaho’s “Ground and roof snow loads for Idaho” study completed under the leadership of Dr. Ronald Sack is so scientifically flawed it should never have been published. As cities and counties adopt the resulting snow load roof standards, millions of dollars are wasted by overbuilding roof systems, in many cases, the cost of complying runs between $5,000 and $10,000 per home. The problem is the study extrapolated snow levels from the peaks of the tallest mountains and then made a direct correlation to the valleys, accounting only for lower precipitation as a result of the elevation difference/Larry Spencer, Hayden, Moscow-Pullman Daily News letter to editor. More here.

Question: Do you believe Spencer brings up good point?

Jogger Attacked On Centennial Trail

The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department is investigating an attack on a jogger on the Prairie Trail, just east of Huetter Road early Sunday morning. Initial investigation indicates that Jonathan Taylor, 46 of Post Falls had just turned east bound on the Prairie Trail from Huetter Road and had stopped to take a drink from his carried container when he was struck on the head from behind with a piece of wood.  Taylor was knocked to the ground and lost consciousness for a few moments.  When he came to, he was able to use his cellular phone to call his wife, who came and found him and called 9-1-1. Taylor told investigators that he never saw the person who hit him.  There is no known motive for the attack at this time. Mr. Taylor was treated and released at Kootenai Medical center/Capt. Ben Wolfinger, Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department.

Question: Do you feel safe while using the Centennial Trail?

AM Headlines — 8.31.09

Jim Hayden, Regional Wildlife Manager for Idaho Fish & Game at his office in Coeur d’Alene on Tuesday. Story here. (Kathy Plonka, SR)

War Widow Fights College Technicality

Army Sgt. James E. Craig was born in Spokane, married in Spokane and after being killed during his third tour in Iraq, he was buried in Spokane. Although few would argue that he is not a son of Washington state, Craig’s widow has had to insist that it is so in order to continue receiving a state college tuition waiver intended for the families of dead or disabled veterans. “Where you choose to be buried is your home,” says Natalie Craig, who wonders whether other war widows have had trouble proving their husbands’ legal residency “and I’m just the only one who’s not going to roll over.” However, she is not the first to complain, according to state Sen. Mike Hewitt, author of the legislation that provides tuition waivers to eligible children and spouses of veterans or active duty personnel who are disabled, deceased, made prisoner of war or declared missing in action/Kevin Graman, SR. More here.

Question: What do you think of the “nitpicking” deputy attorneys general for colleges who would deny this right to the widow and families of dead war heroes?

PH: Recession Misses Sandpoint

A recession? You could have fooled those in downtown Sandpoint during this past month. With activities such as artist tours, an arts and crafts fair, a fun run and of course the Festival at Sandpoint, the streets were backed up, the parking lots were full and the majority of those driving through the downtown corridor had out-of-state license plates. It was a welcome sight for what many feared would be a slow tourist season in this resort community. Gloria Waterhouse, owner of the Inn at Sand Creek, said it’s been an exceptional year for her business. She credits that in part to the fact that couples, especially nonresidents, are choosing Sandpoint as a beautiful setting for their destination weddings/Patty Hutchens, SR Handle Extra. More here.

Question: How do you view tourists and other visitors to our North Idaho communities in the summer — necessary evil to bolster the economy? A nuisance? A welcome addition that underscores that we live in a beautiful area?

Heller: Texting Like Mad

Joe Heller/Hellertoons

Wild Card/Sunday — 8.30.09

We had quite an opening week to the municipal election process last week, as most of the individuals who’d made noises about  running this fall in Coeur d’Alene filed their candidacy petitions. The lineup was predicted here three days before the filing deadline began. However, there’s still a week left to file. So there’s room for surprises. Huckleberries Online has provided a couple of exclusive posts re: the race between incumbent Mike Kennedy and challenger Jim Brannon. You didn’t see anywhere else that Brannon had missed his official announcement at McEuen Field and was seeking $49 donations (via Linda Cook) from individuals who might want to hide their support from financial disclosure statements. Or that high-rolling Dems in Boise had staged a fund-raiser for Councilman Mike Kennedy. We discussed those things thoroughly while the dead-tree media was content to simply tell you who had filed candidacy papers. Tell you friends that they need to check in here if they want the latest on the important council races. Now, for your Sunday Wild Card …

Wild Card/Saturday — 8.29.09

I didn’t realize how summer was gone until I tuned in the Mariners game last night while watering the garden — and heard the Coeur d’Alene High Viks playing Lakeland on KVNI. I wished someone would measure the length of days during the summer and see if they contain the same 24 hours as the ones in the dead of winter. Summer days, of course, have a whole lot of sunshine. But they seem to pass twice as fast as winter ones. On the other hand, fall is my favorite time of the year in the Inland Northwest. So I’ll continue to cut the lawn. And enjoy the forthcoming municipal elections. Which already are producing plenty of blog fodder. Now, for your Wild Card …

3 Lawsuits Target CdA Police

Item: Three lawsuits target CdA police: Wrongful arrest, assault among plaintiffs’ claims/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR

More Info: A man says he was wrongfully jailed for attempted rape for four months before the charge was dropped a day before trial because of lack of evidence. A woman claims police broke bones in her face when they forced her to the ground after mistaking her drunken stumbling for a threat. Officers had responded to her apartment on a report she’d been assaulted. Another woman says officers assaulted her at a hospital when she checked in after blacking out. Police suspected the man who drove her there was drunk. Those claims are detailed in three lawsuits filed against the Coeur d’Alene Police Department by a lawyer who said he sues law enforcement for a living

Question: Do these lawsuits shake your confidence in the Coeur d’Alene Police Department?

HBO Poll: Rammell’s ‘Wolf Tags’ Quip

Redman: Wolf Lovers Against Hunting

Redman: (Wolf Alliance protesters) are the same people who protest any and all timber sales in our national forests, these are the same people who accuse us of murdering Turkeys every thanksgiving, a cort of turkey holocost, these are the same people who wish to impose their vegan values on the rest of us. This is not about wolves, this is about the right to hunt and access to the forests. These extremists use the wolf and the Grizzly and other species to limit access to their terms only. What they forget is that the national forests are for everyone to use and enjoy, not just their select brand of granola.

Question: Will animal activists eventually succeed in shutting down hunting?

JBelle: County GOP ‘Amateurish Ugly’

JBelle: I think somewhere along the way the Kootenai County GOP morphed and turned into pure amateurish ugly. I think they’d do just about anything to stop Mike Kennedy and don’t really care how they look and what public perception of their efforts is. Where did it all go wrong with them? This is not the party of Dr. Bill Wood, Louise Shadduck and countless other heavy hitters who packed integrity in eights. What’s up anyway?

Question: Is JBelle analyzing the politics of the Kootenai County GOP correctly? Is it nastier today than it was 25 or 30 years ago when Bill Wood and Louise Shadduck were forces?

MR: Focus On Experience, Vision

MarkR: Open Letter to All Candidates: Right now, I’m open-minded. I’ll be watching and listening intently to what you (AND your supporters) are saying, and to what they’re doing (as well as NOT doing). Here are the simple things I’d like to see from YOU, as candidates:

  • 1. Focus on YOUR experiences, and why that qualifies YOU to work for US.
  • 2. Focus on the City’s needs, both for upcoming term, and for the future beyond: Where we go from here, with the tools we have available? What is YOUR vision for Coeur d’Alene? What is YOUR plan to achieve that vision?
  • 3. Focus your media and messaging, and those of your staff and supporters, on #1 and #2.
  • 4. Publicly denounce efforts by others, known or unknown, that violate the sprit of #1 and #2.

My vote is yours to lose. And once it’s lost, be sure that I’ll let others know why I’m not voting for you.

Question: Which of the four races for Coeur d’Alene mayor and council will be the cleanest? Which will be the dirtiest? Will anyone follow MarkR’s directions?

CH: I’m Immune From Embarrassment

CindyH: But this brings to mind a distant memory of potty-training number one son. By golly, the kid stayed dry from day one, but going number two on the potty freaked him out. He’d hold it for days— resulting in major constipation. The pediatrician advised suppositories and something called Fletcher’s Cherry syrup. I took him with to Rite Aid to purchase his meds. While waiting in line, he turned to the lady behind him and announced, “We’re buying some medicine to stick up my bottom to help me poop!” After that I’m pretty much immune from embarrassment.

Question: Describe the last time that you were embarrassed.

A Review Of The Week’s HBO Polls

  • Friday: 61 of 86 (71%) said they aren’t bothered by a fund-raiser in Boise held by leading Democrats for Coeur d’Alene Councilman Mike Kennedy.
  • Thursday: 76 of 96 (79%) said Kootenai County commissioners did not do the right thing by raising property taxes 3%.
  • Wednesday: 67 of 114 (59%) said incumbent Woody McEvers will beat challenger Steve Adams to retain his Coeur d’Alene council seat.
  • Tuesday: 134 of 262 (51%) said challenger Jim Brannon will beat incumbent Mike Kennedy in their council race.
  • Monday: 44 of 87 (51%) said the city shouldn’t replace the 90-space Independent Point lot with more landscaping because the waterfront needs as much parking as possible.

Viks Stomp Lakeland In Opener

Coeur D’Alene running back #23  Zach Keiser leaps through the line as his teammate #72 Sean Duffy blocks for him early in the game at Lakeland Friday.  The Vikings jumped out to an early 14-0 lead in the game. Coeur d’Alene won 57-7. Meanwhile, Sandpoint dumped Lake City 35-7. Greg Lee’s story here. (Christopher Anderson/SR)

Question: Do you follow a local high school team? Which one? When did you last see a high school football game?

TGIF Wild Card — 8.28.09

Huckleberries hears that there might be a surprise or two next week when all the candidacy petitions are filed at Coeur d’Alene City Hall. You and I will have to stay tuned for that. Meanwhile, KTVB/KREM has written a story re: how Bubblehead’s son (The Stupid Shall Be Punished post here) got the shaft from Washington State University here. And former Denver QB John Elway plans to marry a former Raiderette cheerleader in Coeur d’Alene this weekend, according to the Denver Post here. (Now, admit it, does any other media outlet in the region bring you info like this?) And now I’m headed home and possibly to the fair again. I’ll leave this Wild Card behind …

Parting Shot — 8.28.09

This photo copy of a wolf tag belonging to Gary Drechsel of Worley photographed earlier today by Kathy Plonka/SR at Idaho Fish & Game in Coeur d’Alene. KHQ story here.

‘What Not To Wear’ Wants Idahoan

The cable television show known for a 360-degree mirror and two snarky stylists want an Idaho woman to make over. TLC’s “What Not To Wear” is looking for women of Idaho who could use a fashion makeover. If you know a someone who needs a drastic fashion intervention, TLC wants your nominations. “What Not to Wear” is fashion intervention for people nominated by well-meaning friends, family members or co-workers. Fashion experts, Stacy London and Clinton Kelly confront the person, reveal their plan, sort through the person’s current wardrobe and give them with rules for maximizing their best assets and personal style/Idaho Statesman. More here

Question: Without naming names, do you know an Idahoan who could use a dress, hair, and make-up make over?

PM Headlines — 8.28.09

North Idaho College staff member Laura Humphreys posts fliers around the NIC campus encouraging students and employees to stay home if they are sick. The college is planning for the coming flu season and the possible reemergence of H1N1 Influenza. Story here. (NIC Photo).

APhoto Of The Day — 8.28.09

Participants perform a patriotic song in Beijing, China. A large-scale vocal concert featuring patriotic songs was held on Wednesday with the attendance of representatives from all walks of life in Beijing, Xinhua reported. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Xinhua, Xie Huanchi)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. “Nevermind what those tanks are doing over there! You line up! Be patriotic!” — BrentA.
  • 2. Who’s who — Pecky.
  • 3. (tie) You’ve seen one star, you’ve seen them all — JeanieS; and: This is what happens when a Star goes on steroids! — Charlie.
  • HM: Charles Dixon

PM Scanner Traffic — 8.28.09

  • 5:48 p.m. Individuals on boat with unknown hull number are entering swim area @ Sanders Beach, challenging swimmers to fight.
  • 4:56 p.m. 3 middle-aged males may be smoking marijuana on Sanders Beach.
  • 4:53 p.m. A motorist is complaining of back pain after T-bone crash on Davidson @ NW Blvd/CdA.
  • 4:39 p.m. A s/b chip truck and trailer is broken down in traffic on H95 near Cougar Creek Bridge.
  • 4:36 p.m. Dirt bikers are racing along the railroad right of way b/n Pleasantview, Prairie & H53.
  • 4:07 p.m. A chihuahua is at large on Jessica Court/Post Falls.
  • 3:38 p.m. A 51YO woman with a history of panic attacks has fallen by a dock along Rosenberry Drive @ North Idaho College beach.
  • More below

IFF Applauds OpenCDA.com

In Coeur d’Alene, the conservative movement is well under way and going strong thanks to a group of people who do not blindly accept what their local government leaders are telling them. Mary Souza, Bill McCrory and Dan Gookin, who started this effort about two years ago, are especially offended by the notion of non-elected people specifically the Lake City Development Corporation – making decisions that have an impact on property taxes/Chuck Malloy, Idaho Freedom Foundation. More here.

Question: Are you surprised that Wayne Hoffman’s Idaho Freedom Foundation would consider OpenCDA.com to be a shining beacon in the Coeur d’Alene blogosphere?

Crapo Tells Rammell To Apologize

“Rex Rammell’s comments are in very poor taste and should not have been said.   Remarks like these should not even be made jokingly.  We are engaged in a critical national debate over many major issues facing our country today.  Remarks like these are not only unhelpful in that debate, but they undermine it.  He should apologize for those remarks and for the perception they may have created“/U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo, as posted on Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Rammell, of course, doesn’t have a ghost of a chance of becoming Idaho’s next governor. In fact, this furor has won him more attention than the many times he appeared with Demo Larry LaRocco at debate forums that now U.S. Sen. Jim Risch avoided last year. Will there be any net affect from this flap in terms of votes won or lost by Rammell?

Bent Cleans Up W/Fair Entries

Don’t look now, but Bent cleaned up at the North Idaho Fair w/5 blue ribbons for produce and flowers, as well as some second- and third-place ribbons. You can check out his entries and haul of ribbons here.

HBO Numbers (for Thursday, Aug. 27): 8217/4931

Question: Do you enter anything in the fair? What? How did you do?

Wolf Alliance In CdA To Protest Hunt

Wolf hunt protester, Patti Watts, right, of Cocolalla, Idaho displayed her signs just across the parking lot from pro-wolf hunt folks at Idaho Fish & Game in Coeur d’Alene on Friday. (Kathy Plonka/SR)

Members of the Sandpoint-based North Idaho Wolf Alliance turned out at the Coeur d’Alene Fish and Game office Friday morning to protest the state’s first regulated wolf hunt. Alongside the protesters was a smaller group who came out to show their support of the upcoming hunts. Approximately 40 protestors gathered at the scene, while 15 wolf hunt supporters gathered. The rally, which began at 11 a.m., consisted mainly of protestors and supporters carrying signs/KHQ. More here.

Question: Are those protesting the pending wolf hunts in Idaho and Montana naive or noble?

Extra! Duncan ‘Competent’

Convicted murderer Joseph Duncan is competent to stand trial in the killing of a 10-year-old Beaumont, Calif., boy, a jury has ruled. Exactly one year after he was sentenced to death for crimes in Idaho, an Indio jury decided after a four-week trial that Duncan is competent to understand and is aware of the criminal trial and can assist his attorneys/John Asbury, Riverside Press-Enterprise. More here.

Question: At Community Comment, JeanieS asks: I am curious how a totally wacked out nutso like this creep can be anywhere even close to “competent.”? Anyone?

JSON: Pot Humor

There’s several things that are pretty embarrassing to be buying at the store, but for the most part you can just shove it in your cart and go through the self-checkout stands (which are quite possibly the greatest catalyst to the sudden increase in condom and ex-lax sales in America). One purchase that you can’t get away with is the toilet paper packs. I understand that people go through a lot of it, but is it really necessary to make me buy that 48 back that’s roughly the size of a Volkswagen/Just South of North. More here.

 Question: Are you embarrassed to buy toilet paper at a store? Anything else?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 8.28.09

Authorities investigate near the scene of a boat crash in Bigfork, Mont., Thursday. U.S. Rep. Denny Rehberg, R-Mont., and four other people were hospitalized in stable condition Friday after their 22-foot boat ran into rocks in the dark. Hospital President Velinda Stevens said she couldn’t say anything else about the incident and referred questions to Rehberg’s office, which said it was working on getting details before commenting. Story here. (AP Photo/Bigfork Eagle, Alex Strickland)

High Noon: Outted Blogger Sues

The blogger who anonymously tarred a fashion model as a “skank” before being outed by Google Inc. under court order generated considerable public outrage when she announced plans to sue the company for $15 million, but few lawyers other than her own believe she has a case. Rosemary Port (pictured), a 29-year-old Fashion Institute of Technology student, used a free Blogger account provided by the Mountain View, Calif., company to label Vogue cover model Liskula Cohen an “old hag,” “ho” and other less than flattering things. Cohen successfully sued to have the blogger’s identity revealed by Google, arguing the comments were defamatory. As Port’s name quickly spread throughout the tabloids, she decided to fire back. Her attorney, Salvatore Strazzullo, told the New York Daily News Port plans to charge that Google “breached its fiduciary duty to protect her expectation of anonymity”/John Temple, San Francisco Chronicle. More here

Question: What expectation of privacy protection should a blogger/commenter expect from a host media, like Google or even The Spokesman-Review?

PFPD Looking For Teen Runaway

Post Falls police are looking for a teen runaway who left her father’s house without permiession between 6 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday. Holly Ann Brown, who is described as being 5-foot-2, 120 pounds, with shoulder-length blond hair and hazel eyes, has been seen recently walking with friends in Coeur d’Alene. She has an active warrant for her apprehension and detention.

MK: I’ll Have $$$ To Handle Smears

Councilman Mike Kennedy (re: Minnick, Bieter @ MikeK fund-raiser): Two years ago former Senator Kathy Sims broke the law (by her own later admission) in putting together a last minute direct mail hit piece to support her favored candidates, two of whom are running together again - Gookin and Brannon. The incumbents didn’t have the time or resources to respond as well as they could have in my opinion, though they did win. We learned yesterday that the same group of folks are now trying to make the campaign personal. Ok, it helps to know that. But I won’t make that same mistake of not responding to falsehoods - I’m prepared to respond swiftly and totally to any smear shots and I’ll make sure I have the resources to do it. Full post below.

Question: Do you expect a last-minute, direct-mail attack against Coeur d’Alene council incumbents, like the one that occurred over the final weekend of the 2007 campaign?

KR: UI Frosh Requirement Wrong

On Monday, freshmen began classes at the University of Idaho. If statistics are any predictor of the future, 79 percent of these freshmen will return for their sophomore year. But that means over one-fifth of these new students won’t be back. U of I officials are trying to do the right thing, by looking for ways to help new students adjust to college. But they’re going about it the wrong way, by requiring first-year students to live in dorms or Greek housing. … None of this is as controversial as the residential requirement, which goes into effect next fall. This is a pocketbook issue. It will force parents to shell out for campus room and board, which can cost more than off-campus housing/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Is the University of Idaho really trying to protect freshman by requiring them to live on campus? Or is it trying to collect the extra $700,000 in extra funding by forcing them to do so?

Dog Days Of Summer

“As August comes to an end, near triple digit temperatures return making a swim in the lake the perfect way to spend the day,” posts Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. “Pebbles, a long-haired Chihuahua, enjoys cooling off with a dog paddle in North Idaho’s Spirit Lake.”

Question: Can a summer in viewtiful North Idaho have dog days? Isn’t the term “dog days” suppose to mean the waning days of summer when the kids get under their parents’ skin, everyone is bored, and many can’t wait for school bells to ring? Don’t you wish the “dog days” would go on another month or two? 

Wolves Kill 120 Sheep Near Dillon

While the debate about how many wolves are enough to ensure a healthy population will again come to a head in a federal courtroom Monday, a Dillon-area ranch is picking up the pieces from the largest known wolf depredation in recent history. In a highly unusual move for wolves, they killed about 120 adult male sheep in one incident on the Rebish/Konen Livestock Ranch south of Dillon last week. That compares with a total of 111 sheep killed by wolves in Montana in 2008, according to Carolyn Sime, the statewide wolf coordinator for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks. “This is one of the most significant losses that I’ve seen,” Sime said. “That situation is really unfortunate”/Helena Independent Record. More here.

Question: Do you think this wholesale slaughter of sheep by wolves in Montana will affect the judge’s decision Monday in the request by enviros to stop the wolf hunt?

HBO Poll: MikeK’s Boise Fund-Raiser

  • Thursday Poll: 79% of 95 respondents voted that Kootenai County commissioners were wrong to increase taxes 3% during a recession. Full results here.

CH: Mebbe World Is Going To End

CindyH: Omigosh! You mean that hysterical e-mail my mother-in-law received saying that Obama was going to take over the Internet and all our computers was true?? Holy crap! Maybe that e-mail she sent around about the Russians controlling our weather is true too!

Question: What was the nature of the last warning in a hysterical e-mail sent to you by a family member or friend?

AM Scanner Traffic — 8.28.09

  • 11:36 a.m. Resident @ Foxhaven & Valhalla/CdA reports ongoing problem w/neighbor trespassing on his property.
  • 11:35 a.m. Motorist reports man in gray passenger vehicle w/K-plates has run 2 stoplights and is tailgating on Ramsey, from Hayden.
  • 10:47 a.m. A child is choking in 500 block of Sparrow Loop/Post Falls.
  • 10:40 a.m. 4 males are throwing things our the window and yelling at motorists as they travel e/b on I-90 @ H41 exit/Post Falls.
  • 10:20 a.m. Deputy is asked to contact either mayor or city clerk of Harrison for some unknown reason.
  • 9:43 a.m. Chris reports that another customer of the Local Grind coffee stand @ 9265 Government Way is yelling at him.
  • 9:29 a.m. Butch, with the city of Dalton Garden, reports that someone broke into the city shop.
  • 9:22 a.m. A man and a woman are arguing so loudly @ the front entrance to the Coeur d’Alene Resort that security has been called.
  • 9:01 a.m. Something has triggered the sprinklers @ a strip mall @ 460 W. Wilbur/Hayden.
  • 8:31 a.m. Bunco Road resident reports a fire on the mountain side to the east.
  • 8:16 a.m. Bonnie on Sunnyside reports capturing a loose pitbull puppy.

Gookin Files For Goodlander Spot

As expected, anti-LCDC activist Dan Gookin has filed his candidacy petition to run for the Coeur d’Alene City Council seat now held by Deanna Goodlander. A copy of the petition obtained by Huckleberries Online via e-mail request shows that Gookin has loaned $1,300 to his campaign and that Susie Snedaker will be his campaign treasurer. Ron Nilson was one of the five people who signed his petition of candidacy. Gookin ran unsuccessfully against Councilman Ron Edinger two years ago.

Bieter, Minnick @ MikeK Fund-raiser

Amber Pence hosted a fund-raiser for Coeur d’Alene Councilman Mike Kennedy Thursday evening, Aug. 20, at the Boise home of Dan Williams. The announcement for that fund-raiser follows: “Boise Mayor David H. Bieter and special guest, Congressman Walt Minnick cordially invite you to join them in support of Coeur D’ Alene City Councilman Mike Kennedy. Please join us in support of Councilman Mike Kennedy. Many know Mike as the moderator of numerous Democratic events he makes us all enjoy a bit more with his humor and wit. Others of us may know Mike from the campaigns he has worked on throughout Idaho. Or most recently — Mike’s entry into the political world as a first-term City Council member in Coeur d’Alene. Please join us for an informal, relaxed meet and greet to hear from Mike about his campaign and some brief thoughts about the importance of local governments working together for the betterment of all Idahoans. Contributions to Mike’s campaign can be given at the door, please make checks out to Kennedy for CDA. Or you can visit www.kennedyforcda.com  to learn more about Mike’s campaign or make an online donation.”

Question: Do you see anything wrong with this fund-raiser?

AM Headlines — 8.28.09

Catlin Torlin of Coeur d’Alene worked on the arbor of the garden shed for Shared Harvest community garden in Coeur d’Alene on Wednesday. Their first ever fund raiser is on Saturday. More here. (Kathy Plonka/SR)

Question: Have you been involved in a community garden?

Bill Gives Obama Internet Control

Internet companies and civil liberties groups were alarmed this spring when a U.S. Senate bill proposed handing the White House the power to disconnect private-sector computers from the Internet. They’re not much happier about a revised version that aides to Sen. Jay Rockefeller, a West Virginia Democrat, have spent months drafting behind closed doors. CNET News has obtained a copy of the 55-page draft (excerpt), which still appears to permit the president to seize temporary control of private-sector networks during a so-called cybersecurity emergency/CNETMore here.

Question: Would you want this president — or any president — having the ability to disconnect private-sector computers, even temporarily? 

Palin Pa, Pa-In-Law Stump For Ward

Political newcomer Vaughn Ward basked in some star power as former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s father and father-in-law began a three-day swing for his congressional campaign in Meridian on Thursday. Ward, 40, of Eagle, is an Iraq War veteran. Born in Twin Falls and a Boise State grad, he returned to Idaho in 2007. He was working on the 2008 McCain-Palin campaign in Nevada when he met Palin’s father, Chuck Heath, an Idaho native, and Todd Palin’s dad, Jim. They back Ward’s bid to be the GOP challenger to Democrat Walt Minnick in 2010/Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Would you like to see Sarah Palin return to her native Idaho to stump for a candidate?

NIC Trustees Vote To Raise Taxes

Item: NIC to raise tax levy rate: Higher enrollment numbers cited as reason for change/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: North Idaho College trustees approved amending the school’s 2010 budget Wednesday to make way for collection of an additional $166,000 in property tax revenues. The move will raise the tax levy rate approved in May, when trustees approved the budget, by $1.10 per $100,000 of taxable assessed property value. The total increase will be from $72.75 per $100,000 taxable value in fiscal year 2009 to $82.80 per $100,000 of taxable value in 2010.

Question: Board Chairman Christie Wood said: “We were reluctant to take the full amount, but because of the increased enrollment and the services that demands we had no other option.” Do you think there was another option?

Heller: Now Look What You Started

Joe Heller/Hellertoons

APhoto Of The Weekend — 8.29-30.09

“Moose,” the Seattle Mariners’ mascot, gets a shower from their bullpen while riding around the warning track on an all-terrain vehicle in between innings of an MLB baseball game against the Kansas City Royals on Friday at Safeco Field in Seattle. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Larry Craig Wild Card — 8.27.09

Has it really been two years (from this very day) that then U.S. Sen. Larry Craig became a footnote that will live on in the “Today In History” compilations that appear on the Internet and in some media? Indeed. Quoth Today In History: “The arrest of Sen. Larry Craig, R-Idaho, in June by a plainclothes officer investigating complaints of lewd conduct in a Minneapolis airport restroom, was revealed by the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call. Craig pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct but insisted he had not been involved in any inappropriate conduct. Craig said he would resign from the Senate but changed his mind and served the remainder of his third term.” You can speculate how things mighta been different if Toe-Tapping Larry hadn’t been caught. Or use this Wild Card to start your own threads …

Parting Shot — 8.27.09

A man holds a sign which says “kisses $1” on a street in Sydney, Australia, earlier today. (AP Photo/Rob Griffith)

Question: How much are your kisses worth?

Finding Love On The Dance Floor

“All my life I’ve done ballroom dancing,” she said. “My brother was a saxophonist in a band, and he taught me to dance.” In March 2004, she’d signed up for a senior dance tour to Las Vegas. Not a fan of bus travel, she chose to fly to Vegas from her home in Southern California to join the group. As she watched the dance tour, members emerge from the bus, she said, “I saw all these lovely girls. And then I saw this gorgeous hunk of man. I thought, ‘Oh, he’s married to one of these girls.’ ” But when the dancing started that hunk didn’t have a partner. With a smile Suzanne Bollman recalled, “I went up to him and said, ‘Aren’t you going to dance?’”/Cindy Hval, SR Voices. More here.

Question: Can you dance?

PM Headlines — 8.27.09

Sen. Edward Kennedy is shown in this 1965 photo at Gonzaga University. Kennedy was the keynote speaker at the dedication of Kennedy Pavilion on the Gonzaga campus. The pavilion was named in honor of John F. Kennedy. Sen. Kennedy was awarded an honorary degree prior to his introduction. (SR File Photo)

APhoto Of The Day — 8.27.09

One of the emperor tamarin monkey twins at the Denver Zoo is groomed with a toothbrush by a handler. The tamarin twins named Lara and Lucy were orphaned on July 30 when their mother died of cancer, three weeks after giving birth. You write the cutline.

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Larry Spenser reveals how he got his mullet — Nic.
  • 2. “Ahhhhh, just a little more to the left, please,” Lara (or Lucy) purrs, if emperor tamarin monkeys purr — JeanieS.
  • 3. Wait till you see the tooth brush — Charlie.

PM Scanner Traffic — 8.27.09

  • 5:50 p.m. Male bicyclist is unhurt after being hit by a green van @ H95 & H53.
  • 5:09 p.m. Grass fire @ 1851 Blanchard Cut-across Road.
  • 4:31 p.m. A motorist is either unconscious or sleeping in red Prius on e/b offramp @ I-90 & H95, causing a hazard.
  • 4:28 p.m. Brook on Remington reports someone is stealing her mail.
  • 3:25 p.m. North Idaho lawmen are told to be on the lookout for a Native American w/red sunglasses and tattoos on his neck who escaped from Whitman County officers at Tekoa @ 3 p.m. The man is 6-2, 195, with tats saying “Young John Paul” on one arm and Chinese letters on the other. He’s wanted for probation violation and burglary.
  • 2:33 p.m. Worley area business reports a possible embezzlement.
  • More below (including major I-90 crash @ 1:26 p.m.)

Kidnapped Girl Found

Carl Probyn, 60, stepfather of Jaycee Lee Dugard who went missing in 1991, reacts while watching a televised news conference of his stepdaughter at his home in Orange, Calif., Thursday. Dugard, who was snatched from a bus stop as an 11-year-old child in 1991 turned up Thursday after being held for the past 18 years in isolation in a backyard compound by a convicted sex offender who fathered two children with her, police said. Dugard’s stepfather, the last person to see her in 1991 and a longtime suspect in the case, said he was overwhelmed after doing everything he could to help find her. Story here. (AP Photo/Nick Ut)

Larkin, 3 Post Falls Incumbents File

Huckleberries Online has learned that Post Falls Mayor Clay Larkin has filed for re-election, along with incumbent council members Ron Jacobson (Seat No. 2), Joe Bodman (Seat No. 4), and Linda Wilhelm (Seat No. 6). The only non-incumbent to file is Steve DeGon of West Petal Court, who will be trying to unseat Larkin. Another candidate has announced unofficially against Larkin. Betty Ann Henderson plans to take on Bodman.

Woody McEvers Files For Re-election

Huckleberries Online has learned that incumbent Woody McEvers filed his candidacy papers for re-election earlier today. In 2005, McEvers defeated Steven Fox for Council Seat No. 4, 3,211 to 1,926. Fox, I believe, then went on to almost unseat state Sen. John Goedde in a close Senate District 4 (Coeur d’Alene) race. Woody and his brother are the long-time owners of Rustler’s Roost/Hayden.

Fighting MikeK $49 At A Time

Another the title “Penny Wise and Pound Foolish,” Linda Cook circulated the following e-mail to presumably local Republican women (the names were deleted from the e-mail copy I received), calling on them to contribute money to City Council wannabe Jim Brannon and oust incumbent Mike Kennedy:

“Ladies, I am helping Jim Brannon in his quest to oust Mike Kennedy on the Cda city council.  I know many of you do not live in Cda but I am still seeking your financial support to stop the ambitious Mr. Kennedy before his plans for higher office make him too expensive to stop. Jim Brannon is principled and feisty and we need him in Coeur d’Alene to bring accountability and transparency to city government.  The deal gets sweeter if we can stop Mike Kennedy before he builds more personal power. Simply go to jimbrannon.com and donate.  $49 will keep you from having to be named on the Sunshine Report (I know it’s a small town and sometimes discretions is best) but if you can give more it is truly going to make Cda a far better place. Thanks so much for considering this.”

 Question: Izzit just me, or does that line re: contributing $49 somehow undercut the preaching re: “accountability and transparency”?

HBO Blogosophere — 8.27.09

At Orangefrog76, Granati has posted this photo, labeled: “M is for praying mantis.”

Lowe Fired For Following Orders?

Fired ITD Director Pam Lowe says in her wrongful-firing tort claim that she was ousted just as she prepared to cut back or eliminate a multimillion-dollar contract with a politically well-connected firm, after strong pressure from the governor’s office not to do it. But the Legislature actually directed her to do just that - she was following the law. Lawmakers wanted to save money. The directive was included in “legislative intent language,” a type of strings attached to the department’s budget that has the full force of law/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: What kind of political damage will Gov. Butch Otter suffer from this case?

2nd WSUer Recants Assault Story

A second alleged victim of assault on Washington State University’s Pullman campus has recanted her story. The incident, which allegedly had occurred Aug. 19 on Terrell Mall near Library Road, did not occur, WSU police said. On Tuesday, a WSU student recanted after telling police she had been sexually assaulted on campus the evening before. Police continue to investigate a third assault that reportedly occurred early Monday on Troy Lane on campus/Kevin Graman, SR. More here.

Question: What is the impact of false reports like this?

Whatta Way To Celebrate

Antoine le Menestrel, of France, climbs a building as part of the events to celebrate the Year of France in Brazil, in Brasilia, Tuesday. (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)

Question: Are you afraid of heights?

WS: Cats Will Eat You In The End

Cats will always eat you in the end. I dearly hope my Uncle Bob was dead before learning that lesson - before Clancy, his cat companion of many years, turned on him after he fell and cracked his head on the tub. Like a Mogul prince groomed and pampered on a daily basis, Clancy was apparently unprepared for the hunger pangs that followed the accident. When one missed meal turned into two, then three … well, one can only wonder how long the little beast waited before appetite trumped loyalty. I’ve shared this morbid tale with a number of my cat-lover friends and all stoutly maintain that they, too, would gladly sacrifice their bodies to spare poor Fluffy the slightest discomfort/William Spence, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Do you trust your cat?

2C Etc: You Should Be Wary Of Polls

I had the TV on the other night and decided I wanted to get a feel for how the great health care debate was moving along, so I did a little channel surfing. First I came across Keith Olbermann, who said that a poll conducted by a “conservative-leaning group” shows that 58 percent of Americans support universal health care. A little later, I flipped over to Sean Hannity, who said that a poll shows that just 34 percent of Americans support universal health care. Wow. Pretty big difference between 34 and 58 percent, huh? So who’s right? How do you listen to both of them and come away with any kind of accurate idea of where the nation truly stands on the subject?/Phil Bridges, 2C Etc. More here.

Question: Which polls do you trust?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 8.27.09

A pink— or humpback— salmon caught by Vladimir Veliovski of Pacific flops on the beach before he can get his hands on it. About fifty fishermen were catching pink salmon from shore and pier at Dash Point Park, Federal Way, Wash. (Peter Haley/Tacoma News Tribune)

High Noon: Jacked Around By WSU

We just got home from trying to drop off our middle child at Washington State University to start college. Rob is a National Merit Scholarship finalist, and had been repeatedly told by people in the WSU Scholarship and Financial Aid Offices that the National Merit Scholarship at Washington State University, in conjunction with the Western Undergraduate Exchange, covers full out-of-state tuition. They lied through their teeth, repeatedly and systematically/Joel Kennedy, The Stupid Shall Be Punished. More here.

Question: Have you or your children ever been given a run-around by college officials?

Coeur d’Alene Honors Ted Kennedy

Don Sausser, HBO’s Eye On Sherman Avenue, reports via camera that the flag at Independence Point has been lowered to half staff in memory of the late U.S. Sen. Teddy Kennedy.

AM Scanner Traffic — 8.27.09

  • 11:55 a.m. Keith on Royal Drive/Post Falls reports that a neighbor kid is shooting holes in his house w/a pellet gun.
  • 11:42 a.m. A semi is stalled in the n/b lane of Spokane Street/Post Falls.
  • 11:33 a.m. R/P reports that a barefoot man who’s now s/b on 3rd/CdA stomped all over wet cement at the corner of 4th & Miller.
  • 10:52 a.m. 40ish woman is suffering a seizure behind employee lounge @ Coeur d’Alene Casino/Worley.
  • 10:07 a.m. Post Falls police are responding to a report that a young man is aggressively manhandling.
  • 10:24 a.m. A 56YO woman with two heart stints is suffered chest pain @ North Idaho Eye Institute @ Lincoln & Emma.
  • 10:15 a.m. Woman wants to see police re: her father-in-law’s refusal to quit driving.
  • 9:58 a.m. KMC pediatrics department reports possible child abuse.
  • 9:49 a.m. Motorist reports that a white Chrysler van sideswiped him while s/b on H95 in Bonner County. The motorist continued to follow the van until stopped by lights @ Garwood.
  • 9:03 a.m. A 3YO boy is on a porch in the 1500 block of 3rd Avenue/Post Falls w/o adult supervision.
  • 8:42 a.m. A woman reports that her neighbor’s pitbull killed one of her cats.
  • 8:38 a.m. An abandoned paddleboat has been found (no location given).

OC: Will Flags Be Lowered For Craig?

OfCoffee: The POTUS has ordered flags at half mast across the country to honor Kennedy. Many on this blog agree with that. When Larry Craig passes away, I assume that they will agree that the POTUS should order flags at half mast for Larry? Kennedy’s faux paus was at the beginning of his career. Larry’s was at the end. But Kennedy’s was a far worse infraction. Is it all just a matter of timing? Is it best to die when the POTUS is in the same party as you? Should we just expect that liberal career politicians will get better posthumous treatment in the media than conservatives? (These are just rhetorical questions.) Full post below.

Question: Well?

Dean Miller Lands In New York

Marianne Love e-mails news that Dean Miller, the former Idaho Falls Post Register editor and bureau chief of the now-defunct SR Sandpoint office, has taken a job in New York. Here’s Dean’s report from his Facebook page: “Now that they’ve given me a key to my office, I guess it’s official: I’m no longer unemployed. My new gig is Director of the Center for News Literacy at Stony Brook University, about an hour east of Manhattan on Long Island. I’ve posted a link about the Center’s recent conference. Racie and the kids arrive today. I begin teaching in 7 days. Move into a new house in about 8 days.”

Nemesis: Demos ‘Eat Our Own’

Democrats are a strange bunch.  … We’re not usually very effective in our political campaigns and we waste tremendous amounts of passion and energy chasing these side issues instead of going for the prize with a single minded focus. We call each other out, in public, and we gang up and run someone down if we feel they stepped over the line and are now undeserving of our support.  We don’t privately chastise our neighbor for their bad behavior … no … we loudly give as good as we get, a massive public catfight that usually fractures our unity and amuses our opponents to no end/Nemesis, ”We Unabashedly eat our own.” And: 43rd State Blues comments thread that led to Binky Boy’s ouster. H/T: Treasured Valley 

Question: Which major party does a better job at eating its own— Republican? Or Democratic?

Quality Time

President Barack Obama, second from left, pauses on his bike ride with his family and friends including Sasha Obama, 8, right, while on vacation on Martha’s Vineyard on Lobsterville Beach in Aquinnah, Mass., this morning.(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Question: Can you have quality time with your children w/o having quantity time?

2005 Mayor/Council Election Results

  • Mayor: Sandi Bloem,  4,211; Joseph Kunka 1,318
  • Council Seat #2: Mike Kennedy, 2,726; Dan Yake, 1,507; Mary Souza,1,343
  • Council Seat #4: Woody McEvers, 3,211; Steven Foxx, 1,926
  • Council Seat #6: Deanna Goodlander, 2,897; Susan Snedaker, 2,398
  • Registered Voters: 19,765; Election Day Registration, 70; Votes Cast: 5,576; Voter Turnout: 28%

     

2007 CdA Council Results

Seat No. 1:

  • Ron Edinger: 2,626 (53.75%)
  • Dan Gookin: 2,260 (46.25%)

Seat No. 2

  • Jim Brannon  1,865 (38.63%)
  • A.J. (Al) Hassell III  2,067 (42.81%)
  • Chris Patterson  467 (9.67%)
  • Jerry Weaver  429 (8.89%)

Seat 5

  • Joe Kunka  225 (4.68%)
  • Susan P. Snedaker 1,443 (29.99%)
  • Anita L. Banta  438 (9.10%)
  • John W. Bruning  2,331 (48.45%)
  • Wayne Frisbie, Sr. 374 (7.77%)

DFO: These results should show you that the candidacies of Jim Brannon and Dan Gookin should be taken seriously. Brannon ran a tough race against former Mayor Al Hassell. Gookin was the toughest competitor that veteran Councilman Ron Edinger faced since he was defeated for re-election for mayor in the late 1970s.

Kunka Files For CdA Mayor

Huckleberries has learned that Joe Kunka has filed his candidacy papers for Coeur d’Alene mayor this morning. Kunka, who ran an unsuccessful long-shot campaign against incumbent Mayor Sandi Bloem four years ago, is one of three individuals who have said they are going to run for the position. In 2007, Kunka ran for the seat currently held by Councilman John Bruning, finishing fifth in the five-way race with only 4.68% of the vote. Mayor Bloem has told Huckleberries Online that she is going to run for an unprecedented third term as the Lake City mayor. Josh Arnold, a 30YO planner for the Coeur d’Alene Indian Tribe, also has said he’ll seek the office.

Rammell’d Buy ‘Obama Tags’

After an audience member shouted a question about “Obama tags” during a discussion on wolves, Rammell responded, “The Obama tags? We’d buy some of those.” Rammell, a veterinarian and former elk rancher from Idaho Falls, said his comment was a joke and he would never seriously talk about President Obama that way, although he doesn’t support anything Obama’s done as president. “I was just being sarcastic. That was just a joke,” Rammell said. “I would never support him being assassinated. “She kind of caught me off guard, to be honest with you”/Jared S. Hopkins, Twin Falls Times-News. More here.

Question: Are ‘Obama tags’ something that a gubernatorial candidate — albeit a long-shot one — should joke about at a public forum?

Triathlete: Almost Panicked @ CdA

I don’t know if I ran into the water under my own power or if I was just carried along by the mass of bodies around me. I dove in when I could and started to swim. Well, I tried to swim. I’ve never been IN a washing machine but I imagine that this is what it might feel like. I couldn’t catch my breath and every time I opened my mouth water went in. Arms and legs and bodies were everywhere around me, behind me, on top of me and the waves created by the mass of swimming humanity and urged on by the strong winds facing us seemed insurmountable. I was flailing and gasping for air and everywhere I turned was only worse. I drank enough water to hydrate me for the whole day! I panicked. And stopped/Wendy P. Lloyd, xtri.com. More here.

Question: Have you ever had a scary experience swimming?

HBO Poll: County Raised Taxes 3%

he Kootenai County commissioners unanimously approved the new fiscal year budget with a 3 percent tax hike Wednesday night, in spite of objections from members of the public. “We take this very seriously — we understand the situation people are in, we’re in the same situation ourselves,” said Commissioner Todd Tondee. The 2009-10 budget of $73,413,898 is roughly $3.5 million less than this past fiscal year, due to depleting state funds and a significant drop in building and planning-related revenue/Alecia Warren, Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

  • Wednesday Poll: 59% of 111 Merry Hucksters answered that incumbent Councilman Woody McEvers is going to defeat challenger Steve Adams in their municipal election race. Results here.

AM Headlines — 8.27.09

“Some North Idaho Fair traditions go back for many years,” posts Councilwoman KerriT/Main Street. “In my youth I loved the Lions corn-on-the cob when attending the fair. Now for the past several years I’ve had the opportunity to work a few shifts in the Lions booth with my husband, Bert. Here we are last year in our crowd-pleasing corn shirts with our nephew, Derek Scharf. More here.

Question: Which day do you plan to attend the North Idaho Fair? Why?

911 Audio Released Re: Resort Death

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Ian James’s phone call to 911

A night of drinking and arguing at the Coeur d’Alene Resort culminated in a teary call to 911 moments after a woman fell 12 stories to her death. The caller was the woman’s boyfriend, the only witness to an incident he said was a suicide but police are still investigating. “She got really mad at me because I wasn’t paying enough attention to her, she said,” Ian E. James, 38, told a police dispatcher. “I was not receptive to her advances….she was so mad, so mad.” James told the 911 dispatcher he didn’t see Lynea M. Sprung Hambrice, 36, fall but said she’d jumped off the balcony after saying she wanted to kill herself. The call was made at 12:34 a.m. on July 30. Three minutes earlier, James sent his brother a text message stating “he may need his help she got drunk and got crazy,” according to court documents/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR. More here.

Question: What do you make of this tragedy after listening to the tape?

Press: Play Fair In City Campaigns

Already, we’ve heard from some quarters regret that the old “horse race” format has been abandoned. Just five years ago or so, Coeur d’Alene and Post Falls both switched from the horse race selection method to the by-seat format. Rathdrum will also go by-seat this Nov. 3. What’s the difference? With the horse race method, no matter how many candidates are running for, say, three council seats, the top three vote-getters are elected. With the by-seat format, candidates declare for a specific position on the council, and only the top vote-getter for each position is elected. The concern we’ve heard expressed about the by-seat approach is that the races can get personal, and when races get personal, they often get ugly. If you have everybody competing for three open seats, some argue, more attention is focused on issues than on personalities/Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

Question: Do you prefer the current method used by Coeur d’Alene and Post Falls to fill council seats, with candidates running against one another for a particular spot, or the old method in which the top two or three vote-getters win positions?

Signe: From Pampered Kitty To Lion

Signe Wilkinson/Philadelphia Inquirer

North Idaho Fair Wild Card — 8.24.09

I’m off to home and then the North Idaho Fair. I’ll make a pit stop to pick up my 84-year-old mother along the way. She’s still got spunk and a good sense of humor. Which she had to have to raise six strong-willed Portuguese children. I’m the type of fair goer who sticks to the north end of the grounds, sightseeing in the exhibit barns and at the animals (cows, chickens, rabbits, horses, etc.) that were part of my formative years, growing up on a 500-cow dairy. You won’t see me in the midway. I don’t like to be yelled at by carnies hawking kewpie dolls. Nor can I handle a ride wilder than a merry-go-round. I hope to see you there. Now, I’ll replay the Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 8.26.09

Boston Red Sox players watch the scoreboard screen as Sen. Edward Kennedy is honored prior to a baseball game between the Red Sox and the Chicago White Sox at Fenway Park in Boston on Wednesday night. Kennedy, 77, died late Tuesday. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

HH: Driving Nonstop To Bayview

After about 20 minutes or so, I was on the road again. Thinking about where I would stop for the night was briefly mused over, then forgotten. I would stop when I got tired of driving. I pulled into a very quiet Bayview at 3:30 the next morning, having driven non-stop. You would think that at my age, I would have better sense. Obviously that isn’t the case. At any rate, I got back, my little girl will be alright and everything is OK with the world. I did have my tail light knocked out in a parking lot, but there to admit to it was a very embarrassed, but honest lady. She gave me her insurance information and I hopped back on the highway/Herb Huseland, Bay Views. More here.

Question: What kind of driver are you on long trips — one who wants to get to your destination as soon as possible? Of someone who likes to take your time and make side trips?

PM Headlines — 8.26.09

The North Idaho Fair kicks off today at the Kootenai County Fairgrounds and runs through Sunday. A favorite fair treat is found at the award-winning Ekness booth ~ North Idaho Beer Balls. Add a little kraut and some onions and they’re delish/Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. More here.

Question: Which fair food or delicacy do you most enjoy eating (Moi? Huckleberry ice cream)?

APhoto Of The Day — 8.26.09

Young women play in tomato pulp during the annual “tomatina” tomato fight fiesta in the village of Bunol, near Valencia, Spain, Wednesday. Bunol’s town hall estimated more than 40,000 people, some from as far away as Japan and Australia, took up arms Wednesday with 100 tons of tomatoes in the yearly food fight known as the ‘Tomatina’ now in its 64th year. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Alberto Saiz)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. P.E.T.T (People for the Ethical Treatment of Tomatoes) see red and try to Ketchup with sponsors and ask why 100 tons of tomatoes must die a horrible, tragic, death, just for peoples enjoyment/Bayview Bob.
  • 2. Some men like their women a little saucy/Girlwithaflashlight
  • 3. Taryn didn’t tell us she was going to try a new occupation, tomato smashing — Raven Lady.
  • HM: Cabbage Boy

PM Scanner Traffic — 8.26.09

  • 5:27 p.m. A female bicyclist who hit her head is semi-conscious and complaining of shoulder pain, following a crash with a vehicle @ Government Way & Walnut/CdA.
  • 4:41 p.m. Reiswig Road/Post Falls resident reports someone has discarded syringes and bottles along her property line.
  • 4:32 p.m. Officers are en route to check on the welfare of a woman who is living with her children in a local storage unit.
  • 3:53 p.m. Andrew reports that his ex won’t return his dog.
  • 3:35 p.m. Twinlow/Rathdrum resident reports that a neighbor has dropped a tree on nearby powerlines.
  • 3:03 p.m. A large box is on the roadway south of H95/Miles intersection.
  • More below

Skater Bear Makes Slow Exit

This combination of four photos, provided by the Snowmass, Colo., Police Department on Tuesday, show a bear that was trapped in a skateboard park, because of its steep concrete sides, in the Colorado resort town of Snowmass making its way out on a ladder that was lowered into the park by officials. (AP Photos/Snowmass Police, Tina White)

KT: Car Kills Cougar Near Falls Park

For the past few months citizens have reported sightings of a cougar in Falls Park, which is right in the city center of Post Falls. For those who may have doubted themselves or were convinced it was maybe a large dog they’d seen, there is vindication. This full-grown cougar was struck and killed in the early hours of Sunday morning on I-90 near the Spokane Street exit, just a few blocks from the park/Councilwoman KerriT/Main Street. Rest of the story/graphic photo here.

Question: Do you still feel safe in your North Idaho hometown?

Lowering Flags For Teddy

A large flag flies at half mast outside the house used by President John F. Kennedy as the “summer White House” near the Kennedy family compound in Hyannisport, Mass., today. President Kennedy’s youngest brother Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., died of brain cancer late Tuesday night. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)

Question: North Idaho College lowered its flag to half staff today in respect for the passing of U.S. Sen. Teddy Kennedy. Do you support the decision to do so?

DM: Second Thoughts About Obama

Here’s what Fourth of July Pass looked like on Highway 10 in the 1920s. OrangeTV provides this flashback in his Remember The Roxy blog.

I had high hopes that the articulate young man with a sales pitch of hope and change had a vision of improving the way the government does business, not changing the entire fabric of what has made us great. What have we, really? One who is not so articulate without benefit of prompters. One who came to the presidency on the power of his personality with negligible experience to back it up. I fell into the trap/Dogwalk Musings. More here.

Reading The August Sunlight

The message writ
in slanting ray
says Old Jack Frost
is on his way.

Bard Of Sherman Avenue

Reptiles, Tarantula Stolen From Shop

Four reptiles, a ferret, a tarantula, and $168 in cash were stolen Sunday night or Monday morning from Duncan’s Pet Shop on Government Way, according to Coeur d’Alene police reports. Apparently, the thief or thieves entered the pet shop from an opening in the roof and then ransacked the inside of the business. A large, 48-gallon aquarium that had housed two bearded dragons, a tree dragon, and an iguana was in the middle of the floor near the cash register. The thief removed a padlock and a screen from the aquarium to steal the reptiles. He left behind fish in plastic bags on the counter and partly consumed sodas, a ginger ale and a diet Coke. The animals were valued at a combined $655. Manager Victoria Moody reported the robbery Monday morning.

Thief Rips Off Wheelchair

A disabled 23YO man who works part-time for Goodwill Industries is without his candy-apple, motorized wheelchair after a thief stole it Tuesday, according to the Coeur d’Alene police department. Usually, Christopher Sollenberger takes the NICE bus to Goodwill Industries, where his mother has left his wheelchair, out of sight behind the building. He is able to walk enough to get to the wheelchair. At 6:30 p.m., his mother dropped off the wheelchair. But it was missing less than an hour later when he arrived for work. Christopher is dependent on the wheelchair for full mobility. It is valued at $5,000. There are no suspects.

Are Brannon, Gookin Aligned?

In the comments section today, there has been some discussion whether Coeur d’Alene City Council wannabe Jim Brannon is aligned with OpenCDA.com’s Dan Gookin. I have dug through my photo archives and discovered/remembered that they shared a rolling billboard  in the past. The 2007 photo above is of a campaign truck parked at Mary Souza’s business behind the charter school, taken during the last city elections. Of course, this doesn’t mean Brannon and Gookin are aligned now.

Question: Would documented association with anti-LCDC activist Dan Gookin help or hurt Jim Brannon?

CB: Pols Wary Of Blogosphere

Cabbage Boy: I will talk to Brannon about utilizing this mode of information distribution. I think lots of politicians are very wary of the semi-anonymous world of the blogs. You have spoken to that yourself. I give MikeK props for wading in and handling it. He knows when to turn it off also.

Question: Are elected officials and public servants safe to come onto Huckleberries Online and comment? What do you think of those who do?

MC: Blurker Turns Commenter

Musical Chair: I actually enjoy the political banter on this site. I never used to be interested in politics since I’ve always felt like a little speck of nothing in Whoville with no voice, but now that I am much older, kids gone, no job and time on my hands, I like to hear what others have to say about the issues whether I agree or not. Some of you really make me think; others crack me up! About the only thing I’ve gotten out of my worthless college degree is learning to be open to other opinions and thoughts and to research the facts to determine who is making them and why.

Question: What value has your college degree been to you?

JG: Cancer Is Blessing In Disguise

This statement may shock some of you, but cancer has actually been a blessing for me. With that I mean the little things that used to sit on my shoulder, I can now brush off. Life is too short to hold onto those grudges. And it sure put things into proper perspective. Cancer has opened my eyes to what’s really important and what is not. It feels great! My personal challenge is for you to look at your life and enjoy what is good and find good in what is not. The human spirit is so powerful. There is so much value in keeping a positive and hopeful attitude. It has been quite a fight with all of the radiation and especially the chemotherapy; but cancer will never ultimately win. I have an amazing group of people in my corner. Bring it on!/Jeff Green, St. Maries Gazette-Record. More here.

Question: What do you think of letter writer Jeff Green’s contention that his battle with cancer has been a blessing in disguise?

High Noon: Ever Been Hazed?

Wells Combined Schools administrators say an undisclosed number of students will face disciplinary action for a football camp hazing incident. Elko County (Nevada) School District official Jack French says the incident happened while Wells High football players attended a camp in mid-June at Idaho State University in Pocatello. French says the district learned about the incident on July 30. Wells Principal Leslie Lotspeich says she can’t disclose details about the disciplinary action because of privacy laws/AP. More here.

Question: Have you ever been hazed? Or hazed someone else?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 8.26.09

Gwen Ingram-Jones models a pair of “winkers,” decorative pants that appear to “wink” from behind as the wearer walks, in Everett Wash. Story here. (AP Photo/The Herald, Mark Mulligan)

Question: Would you wear a pair of jeans that winked?

AM Scanner Traffic — 8.26.09

  • 11:59 a.m. Kathleen on Orange Blossom Drive/Hayden reports an unknown dog or animal is digging under her house.
  • 11:32 a.m. Fortgrounds resident complains that there are 3 vehicles without permits parked in front of his home.
  • 11:17 a.m. Woman flagged down NIC maintenance man to say a dog is locked in a vehicle in front of Lee Hall.
  • 11:07 a.m. Motorist reports that two males matching the description of Post Falls runaways are walking along Hayden Avenue.
  • 10:59 a.m. R/P reports that he’d contained a chocolate Lab w/o a collar but the dog broke loose and now is running free @ 382 E. Hayden Avenue.
  • 10:21 a.m. Motorist reports that a man slapped and punched a woman, then threw her to the ground, after stopping his vehicle on 3rd/CdA.
  • 10 a.m. R/P in local apartment complex complains that tenants above him are making too much noise as they throw toys for dog to fetch.
  • 9:57 a.m. Motorist in white Yukon is trying to contain a Saint Bernard that is chasing vehicles while dragging a chain @ Atlas & Cranston/Hayden.
  • 9 a.m. Officer asks dispatch to contact owner of vehicle parked on Honeysuckle bike lane.
  • 8:59 a.m. R/P wants to speak to an officer re: a dog that died after birthing a litter of puppies.
  • 8:23 a.m. A male in a red shirt and blue jeans is passed out in an alley off Sherman Avenue.

CC: Atheists Get Sign, But No Manger

The picture of this sign is real. Although we still have a Christmas Tree slated for the Capital Building in Olympia, Washington, the Nativity Scene which had been there on display for years is now gone, verboten, forbidden. Instead we have a Christmas Tree and the sign in the picture, brought to you by the Atheists. I agree they have the right to have such a detestable sign present in our State Capital Building, but I have the same Constitutional Right to have a creche, a humble manger scene, as my personal celebration of Christmas present in the Capital Building. I have rights, too, dammit!/David Laird, Community Comment. More here.

Question: Do you sometimes think that atheists have more rights than Christians in this country?

Boise Gets ‘F’ For ‘Urban Waistlines’

When it comes to fast food joints per capita that is — in fact Boise was the 12th worst out of the 100 cities that Men’s Health reviewed for list on “Urban Waistlines”. Men’s Health reviewed the number of Burger King’s, McDonald’s, Taco Bell’s and Wendy’s per capita. They also used data on where people consume fast-food seven or more times a month and used data from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention to form their list. Arlington, Texas came in at the bottom of the list and Buffalo, New York came out on top. Story here via KSDK out of St. Louis (the list isn’t available on the Men’s Health website) — check out how Men’s Health came to their conclustions here/Treasured Valley. Chris’ Wednesday Morning Coffee

Question (from Treasured Valley): How often to you eat fast food? What about chain fast food vs. the local fast food options?

Statesman: Time To Hunt Wolves

Evidently, the must-have accessory this hunting season is an Idaho wolf tag. The tags went on sale Monday morning - and nearly 6,200 had been snapped up by mid-afternoon Tuesday. Ultimately, we hope the hunters get a chance to use these tags. The state has set a conservative limit on wolf hunting; it’s time to go ahead with it/Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Do you think conservationists will get an injunction to stop the wolf hunt, which is scheduled to begin next Tuesday?

Floyd Offers Reward For Assault Info

Estella Lee hopes a reward being offered by Washington State University President Elson S. Floyd (pictured) will help capture whoever is responsible for the assaults that have reportedly taken place on campus during the past week. Floyd announced Tuesday that he will contribute $5,000 out of his pocket to establish a reward for anyone who provides information that leads to the arrest and prosecution of anyone responsible for the assaults. “I hope that’s going to help find the person who is doing this, because this is serious,” said Lee, a senior. “It can go bigger.” Two women have reported being assaulted on campus by a white male who stands about 5-foot-9 and has a stocky build. The incidents happened early Monday and last Wednesday evening. A third woman reported being assaulted Monday evening, but WSU Police officers determined Tuesday the freshman had made a false statement/Yesenia Amaro, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here.

Question: Are you confident that your child is safe on a college campus?

AM Headlines — 8.26.09

Jason Stevens, 10, of Eagle, battles with his senior Springer Heifer while showing in the quality judging in a livestock competition during the Western Idaho Fair in Boise, Idaho, Sunday. (AP Photo/Idaho Press-Tribune, Charlie Litchfield)

HBO Poll: Adams Or McEvers?

  • Tuesday Poll: Before the results were hacked Tuesday night, 79% of 118 Merry Hucksters said incumbent Mike Kennedy would win his council race with challenger Jim Brannon. After the hacking Brannon led 122-120.

U.S. Sen. Ted Kennedy, 77, RIP

In this Aug. 15, 2000 picture, Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., speaks at the Democratic National Convention in the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Massachusetts Sen. Edward M. Kennedy has died after a yearlong battle with a brain tumor. Story here. (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds, File)

Question: What is Ted Kennedy’s legacy?

Bumpersnicker …

… (spotted by Taryn on a brown pickup at the Athol Cafe moments ago) … a pack of wolves with cross-hairs over it … and the message: “Smoke a pack a day.”

Minnick Draws Cheers, Jeers In CdA

But many booed at other comments, such as Minnick’s statement that the government-run programs, including Medicaid and Medicare, which cover about half of Americans, “do a pretty fair job.” Moderator Mike Patrick asked for respect and a man yelled, “That was respectful.” The crowd peppered Minnick with questions both specific and general. One health care worker asked how the government would prevent the abuse she sees of public health care programs. Jeff Ward, president of the Kootenai County Reagan Republicans, asked why Minnick wasn’t fighting harder against “socialized medicine.” Bob Mobarry, of Hayden, received a big round of applause when he asked why the government couldn’t hold off on health care reform until the deficit is under control/Alison Boggs, SR. More here.

Question: Is there anything Minnick can do to appease Kootenai County Republicans who don’t seem to care that he votes pretty much as they would want him to vote?

Prosecutor Mulls Hate Charge

The Kootenai County Prosecutor’s Office is considering charging a man with a hate crime in a confrontation with a Hispanic family outside their Coeur d’Alene home. Ira G. Tankovich has been in Kootenai County Jail since Aug. 16, charged with unlawful possession of a firearm and providing false information to police in the incident, which occurred in the 1900 block of East Pennsylvania Avenue. A Hispanic man told police Tankovich and three others were in a truck decorated with swastikas and the words “born to kill” when they stopped and approached him as he stood outside. The resident’s yard had been littered with Aryan Nations literature and he “felt these men were Aryans and were going to hurt him,” the police report said/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR. More here.

Question: Would you feel safe in the Coeur d’Alene area today, if you were the member of a minority group?

Stantis: Into Another Quagmire

Scott Stantis/Birmingham News

Wild Card/Tuesday — 8.25.09

HMOffsuite posted a reminder in the comments section that the Sherman Square Park free concert series ends tonight downtown with a tribute to The Beatles. Revolver, a Beatles tribute band, will be featured tonight, from 6 to approximately 8:30. If the music is comparable to past performances offered by Chris Guggemos/Handshake Productions, you’re in for a treat tonight. I’d recommend that you get there early. Last week, the Brian Larsen Band packed the small park for its country western music. I’ll be attending a 30th wedding anniversary celebration with some friends. But I’ll be there in spirit. Now, for your Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 8.25.09

Lyle Gaylord of Royal West Amusement prepared the carousel on Tuesday, August 25, 2009 for opening day of North Idaho Fair & Rodeo on Wednesday in Coeur d’Alene. The fair runs through Sunday. (Kathy Plonka/SR)

Question: Which day(s) do you plan to go to the fair? Which events do you plan to see?

Oops! Mebbe Not So Biased

But one woman in the audience wanted to know why the media wasn’t covering the Obama administration policies and holding the federal government accountable. She also went so far as to wonder aloud why no media had attended Saturday’s event. Apparently, she didn’t notice the Times-News photographer taking pictures, a television reporter with a video camera or a Times-News reporter writing in a notebook less than five feet from where she was standing/Jared S. Hopkins, Capitol Confidential, Twin Falls Times-News. More hereH/T: Randy Stapilus, Ridenbaugh News

Question: Do you believe local media outlets — Hagadone newspapers, Spokesman-Review, Spokane newscasts — are biased politically?

PM Headlines — 8.25.09

“Recognize these guys?” asks Kootenai MPO. “No, it’s not the members of a 1960’s-era folk singing group reunited for one last tour. This is the seven-member Idaho Transportation Board (which badly needs a female member, by the way).” More here.

Question: Can you justify why there isn’t a woman on the Idaho Transportation Department board?

APhoto Of The Day — 8.24.09

Estonia’s Ksenija Balta competes in the final of the Women’s Long jump during the World Athletics Championships in Berlin on Sunday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. After again jumping to conclusions on the Ed Corridor, the head CAVEr is now a mere shadow of her former self — JohnA.
  • 2. (tie) Will Ms. Estonia land safely? Only the shadow knows! — Formerly Sandpoint; and: At the World Shadow Puppet competition, Estonia’s Ksenija Balta thrills the judges with her rendition of a baked turkey — MikeS.
  • 3. Some 14,000 feet below, many in the small and suddenly dark farming community of Silage, Kan. ran outside thinking the world was coming to an end — BrentA.
  • HM: Soaf

Ex-Spirit Lake Cop Sues Department

Former officer Christopher Love is suing the Spirit Lake Police Department, claiming that he was unlawfully fired last year after he was diagnosed with active leukemia. Love, who joined the department in October 2006, had told Police Chief Wiley Ronnenberg later that year that he was in remission from cancer but needed periodic testing, according to the lawsuit filed in 1st District Court by attorney Jay Sturgell. In June 2008, Love told the chief that he had come out of remission because he would need extended time off from work, impacting the small police department. He was fired afterward, the suit said. Love is seeking reimbursement for actual damages, back pay, retirement benefits, reasonable attorney fees, in excess of $10,000, among other things.

DFO Captures Loose Goat

Kevin Taylor: “BTW Cindy H, I think we all remember that picture of DFO and the goat. Just sayin’.” DFO: I don’t know anything about that.

Question: Which one is the old goat?

PM Scanner Traffic — 8.25.09

  • 5:40 p.m. Motorcyclist ran into the back of a dump truck @ H41 & Prairie. Driver kept going b/c he didn’t know his truck had been hit.
  • 4:58 p.m. KMC needs help lifting a large man who got to the hospital after falling 2 stories.
  • 4:15 p.m. Hauser resident reports that 3 or 4 vehicles are taunting him by racing behind his property b/c he called police on another racer last night.
  • 4:11 p.m. Juveniles are throwing rocks at cars on interstate, from a Post Falls overpass.
  • 3:45 p.m. A Spokane Street/Post Falls woman has found a 3YO boy running naked on the street. The boy doesn’t know his name or where he lives. But police believe he’s the same boy who was running naked in the area a few days ago.
  • More below

Willie To Folo In Ma Love’s Footsteps

You’re looking at the new adviser to the Sandpoint High School Cedar Post newspaper. William E. Love III has signed a contract. He’s been finger-printed, and he has his ID card for Lake Pend Oreille School District 84, where he’ll begin his teaching career Sept. 8 as a journalism instructor/newspaper adviser. He says it’s going to be difficult getting used to being called “Mr. Love.” Willie interviewed for the job in early July (I snapped the photo before he went off to the interview) and received word the next day that he had been selected. He’s been up to Sandpoint twice this summer and has met with his high school newspaper staff on each visit. As parents, we’re very proud and excited for our son. As a mom who held the same position at SHS for seven years, I’m still in disbelief with this ironic twist of events–but thrilled/Marianne Love, Slight Detour. More here.

Question: Is anyone of your kids following in your footsteps? Did you follow in the footsteps of one of your parents?

So Tired, Tired Of Waiting For Jimbo

One of HBO’s Merry Hucksters couldn’t help him/herself this afternoon, after City Council candidate Jim Brannon failed to show for a planned noon announcement of his candidacy on the American Legion pitcher’s mound at McEuen Field. Gary Ingram, I believe, is warming up in the bullpen, just beyond the edge of the photo frame.

Question: Feel free to try your hand at a cutline.

Huckleberries Hears II …

… that Coeur d’Alene police wrote Aryan Nations follower Paul Mullet of Athol 3 more tickets for littering this morning. In one of those incidences, Mullet was allegedly caught on surveillance camera, circulating racist literature on the North Idaho College campus. Mullet was among three men who were given misdemeanor citations for littering two weeks ago for throwing racists fliers in yards along Coeur d’Alene’s Mullan Street. Earlier story here.

NR: Is Obama’s Presidency Over?

Progressives are waiting for Barack Obama and his team to work the kind of political magic they seemed to work in 2008—except when they didn’t. Cutting through all the mythologizing of the Obama campaign, the real keys to his stretch-run success last year were his legendary calm (“No Drama Obama”); his confidence in his own long-range strategy; his ability to choose competent lieutenants and delegate to them abundantly; and his grasp of the fundamentals of public opinion and persuasion. There was zero sense of panic in the Obama campaign itself late last summer, because they stuck with their strategy and organization and didn’t let the polls or news cycles force them off the path they had chosen/Jason Zengerle, New Republic. More here.

Question: Do you think Obama’s presidency is in trouble?

South Carolina Man Wins $259.9M

Powerball winner Solomon Jackson Jr., center, of Columbia, S.C., receives a check from the South Carolina Education Lottery during a press conference after claiming his prize Tuesday. (AP Photo/Brett Flashnick)

Road Rage Van Has Post Falls Ties

The mystery of the road rage van continues. Spokane County Sheriff’s detectives have been trying to track down the driver of a van who faces a vehicular assault charge for allegedly dragging a motorcyclist during a fight on North Division Street on Aug. 14. Detectives found the van’s previous owner, a Spokane man, who said he sold the vehicle to a man he thought lived in Cheney, said Sgt. Dave Reagan. The van’s current license plate is Washington plate 102YVY, but it’s registered to a Post Falls church detectives don’t believe exists, Butch Stephen’s Organizational Church, Reagan said. Now Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for information that solves the crime/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR Sirens & Gavels. More here.

Question: Any of you heard of Butch Stephen’s Organizational Church in Post Falls?

JS: Boys Easier To Buy Clothes For

For many years, the boys were the same size and it made it pretty easy to shop. I had convinced them by the time they were in 1st and 2nd grade that everyone, all siblings, all over the world, wore each other’s clothes. There were no personal, this-is-mine clothes, except for shoes. Everything got washed together. Everything got folded together. Everything got worn together. I suppose that is why, when one day we were frantically tearing their bedroom apart looking for matching socks, that they finally gave up and wore mismatching socks. Both boys were wearing one brown sock and one green sock/JeanieS, Nuts & Nonsense. More here.

Question: Did you wear hand-me-downs from older siblings?

BA: Golden Rule Rewrite

Brent Andrews/Special for Huckleberries Online

Pontiac To Play Spokane In Movie

Item: Pontiac, Mich., to play Spokane in film remake of ‘Red Dawn’/AM

More Info: A southeastern Michigan community will be doing its best Spokane, Wash., impression next month. That’s when crews will be in Pontiac to shoot scenes for the upcoming remake of the classic 1980s film “Red Dawn.” The city is about 20 miles north-northwest of Detroit. … The original “Red Dawn” portrayed a Soviet invasion of a small town in the U.S. In the remake the invasion will take place in Spokane.

Question: Can you think of a better town to use for a Spokane replica than Dearborn, Mich.?

Extra! Brannon Skips Announcement

Huckleberries hears that former HBOer Gary Ingram was ready at noon at the American Legion pitcher’s mound on McEuen Field, where Jim Brannon was to announce his candidacy for incumbent Mike Kennedy’s seat. But the Habitat for Humanity director wasn’t there. A woman was also on hand to tell curious onlookers that Brannon had a scheduling conflict. Brannon, meanwhile, filed his candidacy papers with the City Clerk’s office earlier today.

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 8.25.09

Rachel Mewes, 16, plays with her cockatoos at Bragfest 2009—an annual bird lover’s potluck held Saturday in Franklin Park. Pampered Parrots Avian Rescue sponsored the event. (Colin Mulvany/SR)

AM Scanner Traffic — 8.25.09

  • 11:59 a.m. Hayden Avenue man reports ongoing problem with wandering goats.
  • 11:58 a.m. Motorcyclist going 100 mph s/b on H95 @ M/P 456 (Careywood).
  • 11:07 a.m. Mother in Post Falls trailer court reports her 36YO son is getting threatening calls.
  • 10:48 a.m. Man wants to talk to officer re: his ex refuses to provide a birth certificate so he can enroll his child in school.
  • 10:18 a.m. A woman is complaining of a bump on the head after rolling her 4WD @ M/P 10 on the Trail of the Coeur d’Alene’s, near Sikwe Road, south of Heyburn Park. An ambulance is blocked from getting to her by a bridge on the trail.
  • 10:17 a.m. Motorist reports that one of the two runaways sought by Post Falls police may be sitting on the roadside, east of Prairie & Atlas.
  • 10:12 a.m. A 2004 green, Oregon Ford pickup, with a number of teens inside, is swerving across the centerline s/b on H95 @ Chilco.
  • 9:57 a.m. 60ish woman on Moccasin/Indian Meadows has fallen through the back door and porch. Unknown injuries. Extrication may be needed.
  • 9:30 a.m. R/P reports that another tenant on Loralee/Hayden is breaking windows after being kicked out of trailer court.
  • 9:16 a.m. Suspicious man with U.S. Customs credentials and driving a black Tahoe banged on R/P’s door on Alfalfa Loop/Post Falls.
  • 8:46 a.m. A driver has suffered mouth injuries in a rear-end collision that’s blocking s/b lanes @ Mullen & Idaho/Post Falls.

TR: I (Heart) Redbox Movies

I’m in love with a big, red machine. My husband and I have started renting movies from Redbox, the machines that rent new releases for just $1 a day and are popping up in grocery stores and malls across America. We’re big movie watchers — we probably rent at least a movie a week. We often rent older, cheaper movies from local video stores, but usually wait on new films because the $3-$5 rental price adds up pretty quickly. We tried Netflix, but it just lacked the instant gratification of in-person rentals. A movie would sound great when we put it in our queue, but then would sit uselessly on top of the TV for a while until we felt like watching it/Tara Roberts, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here.

Question: How often do you check out movies from the Redbox at your supermarket?

Huckleberries Hears …

… that conservatives are planning a protest tonight before the health care forum featuring Walt Minnick at North Idaho College. Messages have been sent out to local Tea Party members, the tax protester group headed by Sharon Culbreath, Republican Women, North Idaho Pachyderms, and Reagan Republican groups. Huckleberries was told that conservatives are unhappy with Minnick because he wants to reform the current plan rather than throw it out altogether (as conservatives want). Local Republicans believe Minnick is voting conservative, with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s blessing, in order to give him cover for an unexpected, tough political fight in the conservative 1st Congressional District next year. Stay tuned.

Mother-In-Law Wants To Laugh Last

This Nov. 2006 photo provided by Sunda Croonquist shows Croonquist, left, and her mother-in-law, Ruth Zafrin at Croonquist’s daughter, Tovah Zafrin’s 4th birthday party in Los Angeles. Veteran comic Croonquist is being sued by her mother-in-law after making her the punchline of too many jokes. (AP Photo/Mark Zafrin)

Question: Do you have a good relationship with your mother-in-law?

KR: ITD Didn’t Need Lowe Mess

I have no idea whether Pam Lowe is telling the truth. I don’t know if the ousted Idaho Transportation Department chief’s litany of good ol’ boy complaints will hold up in court. But her legal filing, reported by The Associated Press last week, is just the kind of a fiasco this agency doesn’t need. Fired last month, Lowe has fired back with several explosive allegations. Lowe paints Idaho Transportation Board member Gary Blick as sexist. After her hiring in 2006, Lowe attributes this response to the board rep from Castleford: “No little girl would be able to run this department. … What are we going to do when she decides to start a family?”/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Is former ITD director Pam Lowe a whistleblower? Or an aggrieved bureaucrat who doesn’t know when to get offstate?

CH: Computer Still In Intensive Care

I wanted to thank Hucksters and blurkers for their support during my crisis, yesterday. Your kind e-mails and suggestions were much appreciated. Anabelle (my hard drive) is resting quietly. We’re still not sure kind of surgery she’ll need or what her prognosis will be. I’m hoping for a full recovery, but the specialists are tight-lipped and not promising anything. They just took her from my arms and said, “We’ll know in a day or two.” Your continued prayers and good wishes for a speedy recovery are much appreciated.

Question: Did you name your computer? Of do you simply cuss at it?

ITK: Caning For Drinking Beer

Muslim model Kartika Sari Dewi Shukarno, 32, left, who was to caned for drinking beer, is comforted by her sister Ratna as she talks to waiting media outside the Kuala Kangsar police station, Malaysia, Monday. Islamic officials Monday abruptly released the model scheduled to be caned this week for drinking beer after briefly detaining her, in an unexpected twist for Malaysia’s first woman to face the corporal punishment. (AP Photo/Mark Baker)

Question: I don’t think model Shukarno did anything wrong. Of course. However, in a struggle to come up for a question for this post, I settled on this: Should society impose corporal punishment for smaller crimes, like vandalism?

EOB: 4,196 Wolf Tags & Counting

Here’s the 4:45 p.m. total of wolf hunting tags sold today in Idaho: 4,196, of which 61 were to non-residents. All the rest went to Idaho hunters. There’s no limit on the tags, and they continue to be sold both at vendors like sporting good stores and online. Fish & Game spokesman Ed Mitchell said it was busy, but “we’ve had crazier days.” He recalled years ago when Fish & Game had an emergency hunt for deer after a large swath of winter deer habitat burned, and the Boise headquarters had lines down the street for those tags, which enabled hunters to take a second deer the same season/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Are you concerned that Gov. Butch Otter is a little too eager to kill a wolf?

JW: You Can’t Go Home Again

You truly can’t go back. The classmates who stayed in Bismarck or North Dakota have continued in the same cliques, with the same jealousies. Now those of us from afar are not quite newcomers or strangers either. We don’t fit in any more into the old patterns that have remained. Only if we stayed could we slowly be reintegrated into the crowd - or not. We have new ideas, new talents or new values. We are different from what we were. Neither better nor worse, just different. But those who have remained behind expect us to behave in the old ways and we can’t. We’ve changed. They still expect the shy classmate who could barely talk to her peers, not the woman who went to the state Legislature to change Washington water law on withdrawal of ground waters for the first time in 58 years/Jean Wardwell, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here.

Question: Do you enjoy going to reunions? Or do they remind you that you no longer have much in common with those who remained in your home town?

Park Panel: Set Tubbs Hill Curfew

Item: Tubbs Hill group pans curfew plan: City panel: 11 p.m. limit would reduce vandalism/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: Moonlight treks across Tubbs Hill could become a thing of the past — or at least a ticketable offense — if the city of Coeur d’Alene decides to put a cap on park operating hours. However, the lakeside hill’s foundation doesn’t want the bad actions of a few late-night guests to impose a curfew on all Tubbs Hill visitors. Increased vandalism, fires, noise and otherwise bad behavior at night have steered the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission to suggest the City Council forbid people from hanging out at all city parks — not just Tubbs Hill — long after the sun goes down.

Question: Should the city of Coeur d’Alene impose an 11 p.m. curfew on Tubbs Hill, in an effort to reduce vandalism?

AM Headlines — 8.25.09

“As the dog days of summer begin to turn the corner into back to school, Monday afternoons are still time for play in North Idaho,” posts Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. “On the Spokane River a boat pulled two tubes of thrill-seekers through the waves.”

HBO Poll: Brannon Or Kennedy

Jim Brannon is hoping the third time is the charm. The Habitat for Humanity Executive Director is tossing his hat back in the political ring, officially announcing his candidacy to run for the Coeur d’Alene City Council. He will be running for seat 2, the four-year spot held by incumbent Mike Kennedy. “We have to find ways to reduce property taxes,” Brannon said Monday. “If you uncover additional sources of revenue and then you spend it, you haven’t done anything for the property owners. I’d like to change the culture from one of spending tax dollars, to one of saving taxpayer money”/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

  • Monday Poll: 51% of the 77 respondents said the city shouldn’t remove a 90-space parking lot from Independence Point to increase green space because we need as much parking as we can get on the waterfront. Results here.

MC: Program Was A Clunker

Musical Chair: I’m glad the (Cash-for-Clunkers) program is over. Nothing more than a dishonest deal or no deal marketing scheme to benefit dealerships. I always thought ‘clunker’ meant dilapidated—fallen into partial ruin or decay—like our smoke belching, rusted out bucket of bolts, sitting on it’s deathbed ‘89 Mazda pickup on the side of the garage that my husband keeps around for that once a year dump run as long as he can keep it started long enough to make the two mile trip. Found out the inefficient, but paid for, garbage hauler used to get 21 mph and that new Ford F150 on the wish list gets 14 mph! My clunk is junk. Well, we’ll just have to keep our polluter around a while longer until the automakers start making gas efficient cars again.

Question: Does your clunker get better gas mileage than the 14 mph of a new Ford F150?

MikeS: Time Goes By So Quickly

MikeS: Dropping my daughter off at Sweyolakan a few weeks ago to start a counseling internship, the emotions hit strong and somewhat unexpectedly. Probably the little campers scurrying about and parents hugging with uncertainty pulled on my emotions with a powerful reminder that just yesterday that my kid was a little one while I was the uncertain parent. Still am. Picking her up at the landing wasn’t much easier as I loaded the truck, turned back to see her standing in a long tearful hug with one of her fellow counselors, time standing still.

Question: When did you last have a “time standing still” moment, involving your children?

Heller: You Should KnowWhat I Did

Joe Heller/Hellertoons

Wild Card/Monday — 8.24.09

Only Coeur d’Alene insurance man Steve Adams filed his papers for the City Council on the first day of candidacy filings today. Adams plans to take on incumbent Woody McEvers. Meanwhile, Huckleberries hears that Habitat for Humanity exec Jim Brannon will file his candidacy papers Tuesday. Dan Gookin, a third member of a possible conservative slate, announced Friday that he would run against incumbent Deanna Goodlander. The filing deadline is Friday, Sept. 4. Now, I’ll replay your Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 8.24.09

The largest private residence in Kootenai County has come on the market this month. Owned by Ron and Georgia Puryear, the 26,000 sq. ft. residence is on the north shore of the Spokane River in Post Falls. Listed by John Beutler of Century 21, the asking price is $19.995 million. Councilwoman KerriT posts more in her Main Street column here.

Question: Buddy, can you spare $19.995 million?

No Nativity Scene In Olympia Capitol

Item: Washington bans holiday Christmas displays, tree to stay/AP

More Info: The Christmas tree can stay — but no more Nativity scene. That’s the word from Washington’s Capitol, where protests erupted last winter over competing private holiday displays. The furor focused on an atheist placard, which said that religion was “myth and superstition.” It was stolen and recovered, and hundreds came to a protest rally. The atheists were responding to a private Nativity scene, which was set up next to a long-standing Christmas tree. But a new temporary rule announced Monday says private groups can’t leave behind any displays after they’re done with a demonstration.

Question: Do you agree with the ban against the Nativity scene in the Washington state capitol?

PM Headlines — 8.24.09

When Coeur d’Alene’s Salvation Army Kroc Corps Community Center opened three months ago, organizers projected that 1,500 people would join the first year, with about 670 of them using the center daily. They were wrong. Some 15,500 people have become members of the community center, with up to 2,000 people using its pools, child care, fitness machines and community rooms every day. Story by Alison Boggs/SR here.

APhoto Of The Day — 8.24.08

Eduardo Menendez, left, and his teammate Francisco Menendez of the team “Hublot” celebrate after winning against the team “Star Design” at the Polo Gold Cup in Gstaad, Switzerland, Saturday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Keystone/Peter Klaunzer)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. (tie, both posted at 9:16 a.m.): The one-headed Menendez Siamese twins finally found a sport they could excel in/JeanieS; and: Conjoined twins prove no sport is out of reach — Marmitetoasty.
  • 2. May your belly never grumble, May your heart never ache. May your horse never stumble, May your embrace never break — Formerly Sandpoint.
  • 3. “Eduardo, your shirt smells so nice. Do you use Snuggle or Bounce?” — Charlie.
  • HM: JohnA

PM Scanner Traffic — 8.24.09

  • 5:54 p.m. One male driver is complaining of injury after a head-on collision b/n a Dodge Ram & a Toyota passenger car @ 22nd & Pennsylvania/CdA.
  • 5:41 p.m. A disorderly male in a green, checkered shirt is stumbling onto Ramsey @ Dakota/Hayden.
  • 5:01 p.m. R/P wants to see police re: a 9YO acquaintance who stole items from him.
  • 4:28 p.m. 2 goats are loose on Lacey/Hayden.
  • 4:15 p.m. Female motorist @ Hayden & Meyer reports that she is fearing for her life as the result of a male in a white Honda tail-gating her.
  • 3:46 p.m. Lisa reports that she has contained two loose goats on her property.
  • 3:41 p.m. 3 Husky dogs are lying on H95 in front of the Worley fire station. Dispatcher doesn’t know if they are injured of “just hanging out.”
  • 3:33 p.m. R/P @ Honeysuckle Beach reports his 12YO brother was punched in the face.
  • More below

Gookin Threatens Phaedrus On Blog

One of the weirdest posts I’ve read at the Coeur d’Alene Press blog was brought to my attention over the weekend by newby Soaf. It’s the second part of an exchange between soon-to-be-announced candidate Dan Gookin and “Phaedrus,” a commenter who frequents local media blogs, including this one. Phaedrus made a comment under the online Press story re: Gookin’s plans to challenge incumbent Deanna Goodlander for her seat:

You continue the same type of behavior here, lying about me in cowardice behind your various pseudonyms. But I know who you are and you are elected to represent. I shall keep that in confidence as long as you like, as long as you don’t continue to press the issue. Therefore, I believe it’s most likely in your best interest not to continue exploiting an episode that would be potentially painful to you/Dan Gookin, 9:33 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 22. Full thread here.

Question: Thoughts?

Extra! Jackson’s Death Ruled Murder

The Los Angeles County coroner has ruled Michael Jackson’s death a homicide, a law enforcement official told The Associated Press, a finding that makes it more likely criminal charges will be filed against the doctor who was with the pop star when he died. The coroner determined a fatal combination of drugs was given to Jackson hours before he died June 25 in his rented Los Angeles mansion, according to the official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the findings have not been publicly released. Forensic tests found the powerful anesthetic propofol acted together with at least two sedatives to cause Jackson’s death, the official said/AP. More here. H/T: Shannon

Question: Surprised?

HBO Blogosphere — 8.24.09

At As The Lake Churns, blogmistress Pecky Cox snapped this photo of a swimmer early Sunday morning in smokey Luba Bay on Priest Lake.

From everything I read in the news, there is an unemployment crisis. Well, can’t prove it by me!!! We have been looking to fill a spot here at the Ranch with an in-home personal care provider to help with the kids. We have a great staff and need to add one person. It’s a pretty good job, fairly decent pay, and flexibility to swap shifts to accommodate things like dentist appointments and camping trips/JanTri, Brand X Ranch. More here.

EOB: 3000 Wolf Tags Sold By Midday

Narse Desautle of Lewiston gets the first Idaho wolf tag sold at the Idaho Department of Fish and Game Office in Lewiston today. The agency is expected to begin selling permits Monday morning to hunt wolves starting as early as Sept. 1 in some regions of the state. (AP Photo/Steve Hanks, Lewiston Tribune)

Wayne Hammon, Gov. Butch Otter’s budget director, reports that he bought a wolf tag during his lunch break and got tag No. 3,080. “That was at like 12, 12:30,” he said. “So I imagine they’ll sell five or six thousand by the end of the day”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

BW: Is Solo Trekking OK For Women?

“You did what?” my friend Virgil said, dumbfounded, when I told him I had just backpacked overnight in the backcountry by myself, as if he could not process such a notion. Other friends were equally baffled, and they all live in the Big Sky/Bozeman area of Montana, where civilized country as opposed to backcountry is represented by mere pinpricks on a map. Are we so gregarious as a species that the thought of one night of complete aloneness is foreign? Or can we only enjoy “the wilderness” in the company of other humans who will fill the silence and grandeur of mountain nights with familiar conversational reference points? Could the wilderness be too wild a thing to be in by ourselves?/Betsey Weltner, New West. More here.

Question: Should a woman ever hike by herself into the backcountry?

PBS To Re-Enact ‘Night Of Grizzlies’

I was in college at the time, spending my summers working on Glacier’s trail crew. The park usually pulled us off the trails in August to fight forest fires. That’s what I was doing on that night, sitting in a fire camp on Apgar Mountain a few miles away from Trout Lake and Granite Park, the sites of the fatal maulings. All of us on the fire crew were huddled around a campfire listening to bits and pieces of broken transmissions coming over our fire radios, trying to figure out what was going on, but knowing it was bad. That is, in part, why I’m so interested in the yet-to-be-titled documentary coming soon from Montana PBS. In it, producers plan to revisit the darkest night ever in the first hundred years of Glacier Park, the bear management profession and friends and family of two young women who didn’t need to die/Bill Schneider, New West. More here.

Question: Do you feel comfortable hiking the trails in Glacier National Park?

Cash For Clunkers Ends Today

Sales manager Mark Hranicky holds up a bunch of keys to some of the 90 cars that were traded in under the federal government’s Cash for Clunkers program, on a lot at Lee Toyota in Topsham, Maine, Monday. As the Cash for Clunkers program expires, the industry goes back to confronting the worst sales slump in 25 years. Story here. (AP Photo/Pat Wellenbach)

Question: The Cash for Clunkers program ends at 5 o’clock today. Do you know anyone who has taken advantage of the Cash for Clunker program?

EOB: Convicted Murderer Innocent?

The Idaho Innocence Project at Boise State University says it has unearthed evidence showing that Sarah Pearce, a woman who was convicted in 2003 for the savage beating of a Washington state motorist who was passing through the area on the freeway, may actually be innocent, in a case of mistaken identity. “There are now witnesses that have come forward with a different story … that clears Sarah and clearly implicates someone else,” said Greg Hampikian, a forensic scientist, biology and criminal justice professor and director of the Idaho Innocence Project. You can read Betsy Russell’s full Sunday column on the case here.

Question: How often do you think innocent people are convicted and sentenced to serve long terms in prison, as a result of mistaken identity or an overzealous prosecutor?

Why I Ride Shotgun Over Comments

Item: 12:34 p.m. R/P wants to speak to an officer re: an individual’s “right-wing postings on the Coeur d’Alene Press Web site.”

DFO: Some of you Merry Hucksters bristle when I delete a comment of yours, claiming that your 1st Amendment rights are being violated. Or that I’m being heavy-handed. After 5 1/2 years, I know when a comment that looks innocuous on the surface will turn into a flame war b/c its directed at an individual who will react disproportionately. Also, I know when a comment could lead to legal trouble for the poster. At this point in American legal law, you posters are responsible for your comments. Not the SR. Or me. You should be glad that there’s a blogmeister protecting you from your baser instincts. Earlier this year, I decided that Huckleberries was going to become a kinder, gentler blog. Which differentiates it from the echo chambers and flame-throwing political blogs elsewhere. It has become that. Not everyone likes that fact. But I do. And I believe the majority here does. That’s all that matters.

Thousands Buy Wolf Licenses

Folks lined up to get their wolf tags at Idaho Fish & Game this morning. This is the first public wolf hunt in Idaho in decades. (Kathy Plonka/SR)

The first hunter to buy a wolf tag at Idaho’s Fish & Game headquarters in Boise this morning, J.D. Dennis of Kuna, arrived 55 minutes before the sale started. “Fortunately, I was in the neighborhood,” said Dennis, who stood at the head of a line of about two dozen hunters waiting for the state’s first-ever sale of wolf tags to begin. Tags also are being sold online and at Fish & Game offices and private vendors statewide, wherever Idaho big game tags are sold. By noon, the state had sold about 2,500 wolf tags, officials said/Betsy Russell, SR. More here.

Question: Hunters will be able to kill up to 220 wolves in Idaho during the first season. Do you think that many wolves will be killed?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 8.24.09

Ian Lavin, 9, of Eagle, Idaho, throws a decoy into a pool out in front of Dekes, a 2-year-old Labrador Retriever, at the Splash Dogs dock at the Western Idaho Fair, Sunday in Boise, Idaho. (AP Photo/Idaho Press-Tribune, Charlie Litchfield)

Speeder Nabbed Chasing, Ah, Bigfoot

A man who told police he was hunting Sasquatch is in the Benewah County Jail after a high speed chase that ended with his arrest Sunday in Worley. David Mack Albrethsen, 39, is charged with felony eluding after deputies and tribal police used a nail strip to stop his vehicle in Worley. He was arrested a few days earlier for eluding officers in Utah, police said. The Orem, Utah man was driving north on Highway 95 at 12:02 a.m. Sunday in a blue 1999 Toyota Corolla when a county deputy clocked his speed at 80 mph, according to a police report/Ralph Bartholdt, St. Maries Gazette-Record. More here.

Question (either/or): Do you believe Sasquatch exists? Or: What’s the best excuse you’ve given an officer who pulled you over for speeding?

Adams Files For McEvers’ Position

As predicted here Friday, Coeur d’Alene insurance agent Steve Adams has decided to challenge incumbent Woody McEvers rather than incumbent Mike Kennedy for a City Council seat. Adams announced earlier this year that he would take on Kennedy. But he filed this morning for McEvers’ position. He’s the only one to file this morning, the first morning of the two-week period of municipal election filing. If things continue to play out according to HBO predictions, Jim Brannon will file for Kennedy’s seat. Meanwhile, Dan Gookin announced last week that he would challenge Deanna Goodlander.

BSU Uses Wellness To Limit Freedom?

With much fanfare, Boise State University last week implemented a campus-wide no-smoking policy. I’m not going to deny the ability of the government to regulate or even ban smoking on campus. The trouble is the policy extends beyond the campus and its buildings and straight into privately-owned automobiles. “Smoking on all Boise State property, including in cars parked on the property, is prohibited,” school officials explain in a frequently-asked-questions paper attached to the policy. And violators? “Boise State University reserves the right to initiate disciplinary procedures against any individual found to be in continuous violation of this policy,” students are warned. I’m not sure what that means, but it sounds like something you wouldn’t want your parents to know about. Boise State takes a huge leap, putting the government in control of the interior of private vehicles, all in the interest of promoting student health and academic performance/Wayne Hoffman, Idaho Freedom Foundation. More here.

Question: Do you agree w/Wayne Hoffman that Boise State went too far in its pursuit of wellness when it included the interior of students’ cars in their smoking ban?

First Day Of School — 8.24.09

Caroline Lixie, 5, holds on to her mom’s hand just before the first bell of the first day of school at Discovery Elementary School in Sunrise, Fla. this morning. (AP Photo/The Miami Herald, Lilly Echeverria)

Question: Anyone facing the unenviable task of dropping off a little one for his/her first day of school? Or remember when you did? Or, for parents of young adults, are you facing the uneviable task of dropping off your child off at a college (when the emotional pang tends to hit parents hard?

JohnA: Caring For Aging Mother

JohnA: Yesterday, while driving down again to celebrate Miles’ first birthday, my mom fell and broke her hip following Mass at St. Pius. Two years in a row I’m eight hours away while my mom is hospitalized. She’s doing OK this morning according to my three sisters and a brother who have watched guard all night. It is days like these that I’m reminded how blessed I am to have such superior sibs in close residence to my folks. Meanwhile, we’re waiting to see if Mom wants us to come back today. We’re ready and packed if that’s her wish. We’re guessing she’ll pass it off as a ‘little tumble’ but for one who is one week shy of her 84th birthday, we would tend to believe a full hip replacement would be a big deal. Your thoughts and prayers for my Mom would be.

Question: JohnA’s comment on the Wild Card thread hits home. My mother turned 84 this summer. A year or so ago, she took a nasty tumble at my sister’s house. She continues to be independent and strong. But I know that can change with one misstep. How about you? Does your natural concern for your immediate and extended family include an aging parent?

AM Scanner Traffic — 8.24.09

  • 11:25 a.m. Responder investigating a possible house fire @ Wyoming & Meadow View/Hayden discovers hay bails burning behind the property.
  • 11:22 a.m. Emergency responder investigating report of natural gas smell in an apartment @ 1105 E. 3rd/Post Falls discovers a sewer leak.
  • 11:19 a.m. Dunno exactly what’s happening @ NIC. But maintenance/security are gearing up for “chaos” at noon when a mass vehicle exodus will occur. One staffer mentioned that some vehicles could exit through the old mill site/education corridor property and that the city may need to do something with the lights by Memorial Field to help the exodus. Anyone know what’s happening?
  • 11:16 a.m. An abandoned Trailblazer that was tagged for removal Saturday is still parked @ Echo Drive & Huckleberry/Post Falls.
  • 9:52 a.m. A large piece of wood is lying on I-90 near the Wolf Lodge Bay exit.
  • 8:30 a.m. A motorist reports that a boy, approximately 3 years old, is wandering alone in his pajamas @ Moccasin & Appaloosa in the Indian Meadows/CdA subdivision

Henderson’s Wife Takes On Bodman

Item: Legislator’s wife to run for Post Falls council: Henderson touts conservative values, wants tax change/Brian Walker, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: Citing conservative values and a commitment to serve, Betty Ann Henderson said she’ll challenge for a Post Falls City Council seat on Nov. 3. Hender-son, wife of legislator Frank Henderson, R-Post Falls, will seek seat No. 4 currently held by Joe Bodman. “I was pleased the council in its recent meeting reversed its previous approval and rejected a budget that would have raised property taxes,” Henderson said. “Fortunately, the public offered convincing objections to the proposed expenditures.

Question: Can Betty Ann Henderson unseat multi-term incumbent Joe Bodman in Post Falls?

Flashback: Wild Goose Chase

On Friday, we were discussing gadfly Dan Gookin’s announcement that he planned to run for the Coeur d’Alene City Council seat now held by Deanna Goodlander. In the process, Nic/Rants, Raves & Random Thoughts, brought up the “Wild Goose Chase” that Gookin (shown with biologist Beth Reinhart above) led a coupla years back and provided an archival link to it. Which I’ve posted below. Kathy Plonka/SR snapped the 2007 photo. Enjoy.

Apparently, Dan Gookin got a tip from someone with concerns that Marshall Chesrown and Black Rock Development had illegally diverted the Spokane River in front of the Bellerive residential project on the shoreline next to Riverstone. He told reporters that before he spread any rumors he wanted to find out the true facts. Afterward, he apologized for leading everyone on a “wild goose chase”/DFO, Huckleberries Online, April 12, 2007. More here. Or below.

Question: The ‘Wild Goose Chase’, of course, has become HBO lore. It can be viewed two ways — as the attempt by misinformed community activists to catch someone violating the law. Or as another example of the same activists going off half-cocked as part of an agenda to undermine local civic and community leaders. How do you few the episode?

HBO Poll: Independence Point Lot

The resource team, brought in for around $15,000, chose Coeur d’Alene’s education corridor expansion project as one of four in America to which the world-recognized designers would lend their help. They selected Coeur d’Alene for its beauty and creative possibilities. At the end of their stay, they marveled at City Park. They loved Memorial Field, the North Idaho College campus and applauded the re- created downtown. But why, they wondered, are there cars at Independence Point?/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

  • HBO Poll TGIF: By 48% to 43%, Huckleberries Online respondents say that challenger Dan Gookin will beat incumbent Deanna Goodlander in a CdA council matchup in November. (The poll switched from slightly favoring Goodland to Gookin over the weekend.) Full results here.

SOS From CindyH

Don’t know if you read in yesterday’s comment section, but I returned from the lake to find my teenage son had totally wiped out my hard drive. That’s pretty hard to do, but it looks like he accidentally achieved this. Systems Recovery hasn’t been able to retrieve any of my data. I’m going to have to call a professional geek, but I don’t know who to call. Could you put a shout out on the board and ask Hucksters who, in the Spokane area, they recommend I call. Time is of the essence because I didn’t back up my current assignments/CindyH, SR Voices.
Question: Any recommendations re: who Cindy can contact in the Spokane are to provide computer help ASAP?

Smoak, Wallace’s Town Dog, RIP

Smoak looked overweight but according to the vet he wasn’t. It was all that chow-chow fur; he had the outside dimensions of an early-generation Boeing 737 but inside he was all power; he moved with a slow and regal ease that gave false premise to the concrete-busting qualities of a massive chest that over-shadowed his four-wheel-drive-and-studs forelegs. Smoak was descended from a race of dogs bred for their sled- and cart-pulling abilities on the Mongolian highlands. Indeed, Shauna would harness him to a sled in Wallace winters and they would walk the groceries home together/David Bond, Wallace Street Journal. More here.

DFO: My old SR buddy David Bond is one of the finest writers I know. If you love dogs and good writing, you simply must follow the link to his tribute about Smoak, the chow adopted by the town of Wallace who died recently. You can thank me later.

Lieberman Gets Baldwin’s Goat

Actor Alec Baldwin, he of “30 Rock” fame, told Playboy Magazine recently that he was so fed up with Independent Sen. Joe Lieberman‘s moderate politics that he was thinking of moving to Connecticut to run against the senator. Though he plays a shamelessly greedy Republican corporate executive on the show, Baldwin is a passionate Democrat who once accused former Vice President Dick Cheney of being a terrorist. “I’d love to run against Joe Lieberman,” he told Playboy. “I have no use for him” /Los Angeles Times. More here.

Question: Would you like to see actor Alec Baldwin run against Independent Sen. Joe Lieberman?

AM Headlines — 8.24.09

Here, you see a photo by Jesse Tinsley/SR a late-season huckleberry sprouts from bushes on Schweitzer Mountain Sunday. For some reason, I really enjoy this photo.

OTV Review: Sunshine Inn

“Anywhere you like, guys!” she hollered over the music and the outbursts of drunken laughter emanating from the just-off-work Friday bar crowd. We were cruising Kellogg looking for dinner and were drawn in by the gigantic, retro-tastic neon sign out front. Bill Woolum, whose dad poured drinks there in the 60’s, recounts his youthful memories of the place on his “Kellogg Bloggin’” website. He describes how then-owners Sig and Bunny Peterson lived in a small apartment behind the lounge and would “come right out of their residence onto the dance floor and circulate, saying hi, drinking right along with their customers, and adding a sense of cheer to the bar.” After years of increasingly seedy ownership and general neglect, the Sunshine and its attached motel sat looking sad and abandoned for a large part of this decade. Current owners Tim and Cheryl Moyer saw potential in the old beast, bringing it up to par and reopening in February 2008/OrangeTV, Get Out! North Idaho. More here.

Question: Which Silver Valley eatery is your favorite?

Remove Independence Point Lot?

Item: Park it or plant it? Another development team suggests getting rid of 90-space parking lot in midst of downtown green space and waterfront/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: On those rare occasions when the parking spaces at Independence Point are empty, the views are breathtaking. Pine trees fill the hills across the water; City Park and the historic Fort Grounds neighborhood beckon to the west; The Coeur d’Alene Resort and shop-filled Sherman Avenue entice to the east. They are, the Mayors’ Institute on City Design resource team told the city during its education corridor presentation, the “best views Coeur d’Alene has to offer.”

Question: Should the Independence Point parking lot be replaced with lawn and landscaping?

Ramirez: Justice?

Michael Ramirez/Investor’s Business Daily

Wild Card/Sunday — 8.23.09

The weekend may be winding down, but events in Coeur d’Alene aren’t. From 1 to 4 p.m. today, Chris Guggemos/Handshake Productions will bring music featuring the “Rythym Dawgs.” Don Sausser reports in the comments section Saturday that these events are also on tap: 3 0n 3 baskeball at NIC, beginning at 9 p.m. The wooden boat show around the floating boardwalk. I’ll be on the Spokane River this afternoon, enjoying a barbecue with in-laws and the ushers that guided you to your seats during the 2009 Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre season that ended Saturday night, with the final production of “Miss Saigon.” Now, for your Sunday Wild Card …

Are You Ready For Some Football?

Seattle Seahawks backup quarterback Mike Teel (14) throws in the fourth quarter as Seahawks’ Max Unger, right, blocks, and Seahawks’ Devin Moore, left, looks on, in a NFL preseason football game, Saturday, in Seattle. Seattle defeated Denver 27-13. ESPN story/boxscore here.  (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Question: Which NFL football team is your favorite?

Shock Claim 2nd ArenaCup 74-27

They’re ArenaCup champions again. The Spokane Shock faced the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Pioneers in Las Vegas for the afl2’s championship game. By late in the third quarter, it was looking to be a blow out. By the fourth quarter, it was. The Shock kept scoring and scoring and scoring, finishing off the Pioneers 74-27. An interception of a Ryan Vena pass by Sergio Gilliam for a touchdown sealed it with 48 seconds left on the clock. The Shock won the ArenaCup in 2006, their first year in the league. Last year, they played the championship game at Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena and lost to the Tennessee Valley Vipers in overtime/SR.

1 Killed, 1 Jailed In River Boat Crash

One boater was killed and another boater is in jail charged with felony DUI after a crash on the Spokane River this afternoon, at the Mill River subdivision. According to a sheriff’s release, Daniel J. Zimmerman, 26, of Post Falls, and Jack A. Miller Jr., 30, of Stites, were fishing in a stationery boat on the south side of the river when they were struck by a motorboat, driven by John F. Klinefelter, 43 of Coeur d’Alene, who was with his friend, Jason C. Fisk, 39, of Post Falls. Reportedly, Klinefelter and Fisk were heading up the river toward Coeur d’Alene when their boat suddenly veered hard right into the fishing boat. Miller was thrown into the water. Later, he was pronounced dead at Kootenai Medical Center. None of the occupants from either boat was wearing a life jacket. Klinefelter submitted to a blood alcohol test and had a BAC of .12. The legal limit is .08 in Idaho. Both vessels were removed off the water and taken to the sheriff’s office for further inspection. The fatality was the boating fatality was the fourth in Kootenai County this summer. Full release here.

Wild Card/Weekend — 8.22/23.09

If you don’t have plans for the weekend, you might consider picking up a ticket tonight for the final showing of “Miss Saigon” by the Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre. Or you might reserve 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday for the final free summer concert at City Park, offered by Chris Guggemos’ Handshake Productions. The “Rhythm Dawgs” will be performing to bring down the curtain on the Sunday fare at the Rotary Band Shell. “Taste of Jazz” will close down the concert series at Riverstone from 6:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday. You miss something by not attending folk singer Andy Day’s performance at Riverstone last Thursday, including hearing a song that could easily become Coeur d’Alene’s theme song, “Lake City.” I’ve asked Andy to provide a copy if he ever copyrights and YouTubes it. I’ll post it here. Until then, you can start your own threads with this Wild Card …

Local Felon Could Face Hate Crime, Too

Item: Man could be charged with hate crime/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: A convicted felon sitting in the Kootenai County Jail could be charged for a hate crime stemming from a pair of altercations outside a Coeur d’Alene home earlier this week. Ira Tankovich was arrested Sunday evening and charged with unlawful possession of a firearm, a felony which carries up to five years in prison and $5,000 in fines. He could face an additional malicious harassment — or hate crime — charge pending further investigation, according to Kootenai County Prosecuting Attorney Barry McHugh.

Question: Some people are uncomfortable that we have a category of criminal activity that we designate “hate crimes,” claiming that many crimes are fueled by hate and that the regular penalty for those crimes is sufficient. What do you think?

APhoto Of The Weekend — 8.22-23.09

Construction flagger Patty Nevers of Tacoma, Wash., sits next to a statue of Mark Twain as she waits for the start of a paving project along Capitol Boulevard in Tumwater, Wash., on Friday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/The Olympian, Tony Overman)

Notes: 10 Words That Are Fun To Say

  • 1.  Pandemonium. Feeling proud of her innovative teaching methods, Katrina invited the spider monkey’s owner to bring him to class, revealing her deeply flawed understanding of both monkeys and first graders.  Pandemonium ensued.
  • 2.  Cabal. The Strunkwhite Cabal was dedicated to destroying misspelled and mispunctuated signs wherever they occurred.  Despite their 30 year reign of terror, it wasn’t until their poorly planned DoS attack on the White House Informational website “Cash for Crunkers” that they came to the attention of the FBI.
  • 3.  Shenanigans. Sure, they may just be childish shenanigans now, but left unchecked, they’ll soon graduate to hijinks, or even monkey business.  And I think you know what comes next.  That’s right.  Tomfoolery.  And none of us wants to see that happen/Katrina, Notes On A Napkin. More here. 

Question: Do you have a fun word that you like to say that isn’t on Katrina’s list?

Blogger Fired After ID’ing Herself

Blog fans in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, saw PittGirl as their masked superhero — a comedian and local commentator who jibed the mayor without reserve and ranted freely about her hatred of pigeons. Virginia Montanez says she was fired because she revealed her identity as a local blogger. But despite her effort to keep her real name secret, people started to figure out who PittGirl was. Feeling pressure to take control of her identity before someone else outed her, PittGirl on Wednesday posted pictures of herself on her blog and introduced readers to her real-world self: Virginia Montanez, a 35-year-old married mother of two who worked in the nonprofit sector/CNN. More here.

Question (for commenters and bloggers): Do many people know who you are? Have you suffered repercussions at work or from peers who know what your online name is?

Poll: How Good Is US Health Care?

  • TGIF Poll: Huckleberries Online voters picked council incumbent Deanna Goodlander to edge challenger Dan Gookin by a single vote out of 80 cast, 46% to 45%. Final results here.

SC: Aryans Laughing At Reaction

Shoshone Conservative: While I certainly agree that hate and racism should be condemned, I think the officials here are over-reacting a bit. I am sure in some trailer park somewhere there are 3 Richard Butler wannabes rolling on the floor laughing at how they got the who’s-who of Spokane and Kootenai Counties to hold a large press conference, simply by throwing their nonsense literature in a few yards. The wannabes wanted attention, and they got it.

Question: Do you agree with Shoshone Conservative that the 3 racists who prompted the conference of political and police officials at stateline by circulating hate literature are laughing their heads off?

ID: Gookin Lost Me w/Kroc Opposition

Idaho Dad: I’m sure Dan Gookin’s a nice guy, but he forever lost me with his strident opposition to the Kroc Center. Yes, he will always remind you, “I support the Kroc Center.” But he never ever would’ve allowed it in our community if he had been on the city council back when, gasp, tax dollars had to be used to secure the building site. The Kroc Center would not now be a reality, enjoyed by over 15,000 members, if left up to Gookin and his gang, who not only questioned the financing, but the need. “I feel it’s (the Kroc Center) too big in its present state for us to afford and maintain.” - Dan Gookin, July 18, 2007. Amazing how out of touch a person can be about the very town he lives in.

Question: Will the opposition to the Kroc Center by Gookin (although, I believe, he maintains that he didn’t oppose the popular complex, per se) haunt him in the fall campaign?

CW: You Should Know Task Force History

Sgt. Christie Wood: I have heard the argument of “do not give them any media attention because it is what they want”. Folks, they have already had plenty of media attention in the past 2 months including national attention in the Washington Post. The only people not receiving media attention are the good people in our communities who stand up against hate. It was time for their voices to be heard. No one is suggesting supressing free speech. I challenge DFO’s readers to educate themselves on the history of the Task Force on Human Relations. Free speech was never the issue. It was the violence that accompanied the speech including a series of bombings that occurred in Cda in 1986. Please take the time to visit the “Peace Park” (former Aryan compound) and reflect on how far we have come as a community by being strong enough to speak out.

Question: Are you a member of the Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations? Or have you ever participated in an event sponsored by the task force?

Anderson: Indecision

Nick Anderson/Houston Chronicle

TGIF Wild Card — 8.21.09

I’m dragging. I thought TGIF’s were suppose to be easy days b/c the print column is in the rear-view mirror — and, ahem, ALL I have to do is blog. I was as busy as can be today. The front page of the 9-by-11 tablet that I use for “Scanner Traffic” is completely full — 4 columns of my chicken scratches, noting in the quickest possible way what was happening throughout Kootenai County that sent engines wailing in all direction. I can’t decide which is funnier, the 9-month-old who got his head stuck in a rocking chair or the future organ donor who was performing stunts on the back of his motorcycle while zipping down the interstate a few minutes ago. The scanner provided a coupla good chuckles today. Now, I’m going to post the Wild Card and head for the weekend …

Parting Shot — 8.21.09

Former Kootenai County legislator Bonnie Douglas (from left, with sign, “Idaho Too Great For Hate”), Ian Robertson (Spokane Valley City Council), Cathleen O’Connor and Vic Holmes (mayor of Rathdrum) listen at a press conference this morning, near the state line. A press conference was held by law enforcement and human rights organizers to combat the recent distribution of racist flyers. (Jesse Tinsley/SR)

OTV To Show Bling @ Rap Contest

Item: Battle of the Beach: Coeur d’Alene to host rap contest Saturday at City Park/Get Out! North Idaho.

OrangeTV: My experience rapping is 1) tried Missy Elliott’s “Work It” one time on karaoke night and failed miserably. 2) recorded a song called “Trim Your Bush” for the 2004 election which featured a short rap including the lines “It’s a hairy situation/to overthrow the administration/time for America to buy some razors/eliminate the haters.” This is why I will definitely NOT be participating. However, it might be fun to check out at least. I just don’t get enough opportunities to break out my oversized, diamond-encrusted “P” pendant. Bling bling!

Question: Have you ever tried to rap? Were you any good?

PM Headlines — 8.21.09

“Early in the week,” e-mails Don Sausser, ”a smoke-doused sky caused old sol to create a sunset where it otherwise couldn’t. Within only one more minute it’s 95 degree rays would be extinguished to provide Coeurd’aleniens a delightful amenity, cool summer nights for comfortable sleeping.”

 

APhoto Of The Day — 8.21.09

A gull and a young brown bear eye each other on the bank of the Kenai River Saturday, near its confluence with the Russian River near Cooper Landing, Alaska. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Peninsula Clarion, M. Scott Moon)

  • 1. The gull is about to find out the hard way, that bears, do indeed poop in the woods, and they grab the nearest white thing handy to wipe their bums — Bayview Bob.
  • 2. Deanna Goodlander and Dan Gookin both ponder that they each fish after the same thing — JeanieS.
  • 3. “I could eat you,” said the young bear to the seagull.
    “I could poop on your face,” replied the gull — Nic.
  • HM: Cabbage Boy

PM Scanner Traffic — 8.21.09

  • 6:02 p.m. Authorities evacuate Bell Bay Campground.
  • 5:25 p.m. A motorcyclist is doing tricks, including standing on the seat, as he rides along I-90 in Post Falls area.
  • 5:12 p.m. Woman called from a broken-down pontoon boat to say she is one of six adults and a baby stranded on the water. All have safety equipment. No location given.
  • 4:56 p.m. 3 brush trucks called to Bell Bay campground area fire.
  • 4:37 p.m. Department of Lands is on the scene of a fire by Bell Bay campground (East Point Road & H97/Harrison, first reported @ 3:09 p.m. below) that has spread from 1 acre to 6 acres. A tanker has dropped water. Evacuations possible.
  • 4:31 p.m. Bonner County is looking for an adult female, a 15YO male and a toddler that fled in the woods from a vehicle @ H41 & Spirit Lake Cut-across. No more info given.
  • 4:23 p.m. Someone is bleeding in the engineering area of the Coeur d’Alene Resort.
  • 4:16 p.m. A fire in a Dumpster behind the Loan Tree Apartments has been doused w/water by tenants but is still smoking @ H41 & McCartney/Rathdrum. Much more below.

OnLocationNI: Murray Or Bust

“This weekend the little North Idaho mining town of Murray rolls out the welcome mat for their annual celebration,” writes Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. “It’s everything Idaho used to be, and then some. In the 1800s there were more people living in Murray than Spokane.” More here.

High Court Hears Tom Hanks’ Dispute

The latest act in a nine-year battle between Tom Hanks, his wife Rita Wilson and the high-end contractor Storey Construction played out before the Idaho Supreme Court on Friday. The case revolves around the couple’s sprawling Sun Valley-area home, built by Storey Construction starting in 2000. Hanks and Wilson say the company did shoddy workmanship that wasn’t immediately discovered, leaving them out more than $2 million. The construction company, meanwhile, contends the couple is just out for revenge because they lost an earlier arbitration matter over the villa/AP. More here.

Question: Would you have pursued a suit like this for 9 years?

Tony, Sgt. C @ Anti-Aryan Shout Out

Tony Stewart, right, longtime human rights activist in Coeur d’Alene, speaks to the media alongside Sgt. Christie Wood of the Coeur d’Alene Police about racist literature and other activities at a press conference Friday, near the state line. A press conference was held by law enforcement and human rights organizers to combat the recent distribution of racist flyers. (Jesse Tinsley/SR)

INorthwest Officials Denounce Racism

Spokane Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick emphasizes her department’s commitment to protecting citizens from racist harrassment at a press conference Friday, near the state line. A press conference was held by law enforcement and human rights organizers to combat the recent distribution of racist flyers. (Jesse Tinsley/SR)

“We have been vested with the authority and the power to take action and I assure you I will use that power and authority to take a stronger stance of boldness,” said Spokane Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick. “People who are hateful are bold. But standby to standby, because we are more bold than they are.” Meghann M. Cuniff/SR story here.

Question: Are Inland Northwest officials reacting appropriately or over-reacting to the attempt by 3 outsiders to resurrect the Aryan Nations presence in North Idaho?

Hanging Out On Campus

A red-tailed hawk sits on a round bail of hay located on the West Campus of the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kan., Thursday. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

Beez: Forefathers Saw Web Future

Beez: It’s right there in the U.S. Constitution, for crissakes. The 1st Amendment, Section 2, clearly states that “In order to facilitate the free flow of ideas, no matter how ill-informed or moronic they may seem to most reasonable citizens, that will someday be transmitted on a magic electronic information network which has yet to be invented, the right to private cyber journaling shall not be infringed.” Those founding father dudes were WAY ahead of their time.

DFO: Beez was just cutting his teeth in the journalism biz when I met him in the early 1980s in one of the many newsroom’s I inhabited before landing in Coeur d’Alene. Now, I suppose, he’s a grizzled veteran, as they like to call those of us who’ve been in the news biz a coupla decades or so. Beez’s tongue was firmly cheeked when he wrote the piece above.)

Nellis: Leading UIdaho Forward

Idaho ranks near the bottom for the number of its high school graduates who attend college, yet the UI has an outstanding retention and career placement rate for students who enroll at our university. We need to lead our state’s efforts to actively prepare high school students for greater levels of success. Partnerships with community colleges provide a seamless transition for students to complete four-year degrees. We also complement undergraduate programs at other universities with top-quality graduate programs in our strength areas, such as nuclear energy. This, in turn, benefits industry by providing qualified employees/UI President Duane Nellis, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here.

Question: Why don’t you think more high school grads in Idaho attend — and finish — college?

Calley Apologizes For My Lai

William Calley, the former Army lieutenant convicted on 22 counts of murder in the infamous My Lai Massacre in Vietnam, publicly apologized for the first time this week while speaking in Columbus. “There is not a day that goes by that I do not feel remorse for what happened that day in My Lai,” Calley told members of the Kiwanis Club of Greater Columbus on Wednesday. His voice started to break when he added, “I feel remorse for the Vietnamese who were killed, for their families, for the American soldiers involved and their families. I am very sorry”/Dick McMichael, Special to Ledger-Inquirer. More here.

Question: Is there any value to an apology such as Calley’s so long after the fact?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 8.21.09

Herb Huseland/Bay Views snapped this photo of a barge on the Columbia River at the John Day Dam viewpoint while traveling through the Columbia Gorge this week.

High Noon: Open Mouth, Insert Foot

JeanieSpokane: omg, I just remembered something I did when I was a teen.  Really bad - kind of like anonymously posting nasty comments about someone else.  I was in a restroom at church camp (of all places) and I was gossiping about another girl, something derogatory.  The toilet flushes and out she walks.  I was so mortified - and to this day I strive to never say anything bad about anyone else, no matter what!

Question: Have you ever suffered an embarrassment similar to Jeanie’s in which you said something about someone, not realizing that s/he was in earshot?

Hat Tip: Walkabout

Don Sausser: I’ll nominate Walkabout who, with four pawed Charlie, daily tramps Tubbs Hill’s trails to pick up dog poop left by inconsiderate pet owners. Not only pet turds but all other manner of trash we humans love to leave on the ground. Who else would perform this fragrant task? Unfortunately, she presently has a couple of bad wheels but hopes to return to her job soon.

DFO: Thanks for the terrific nomination, Don. Now, will you Merry Hucksters join me in giving Stickman’s beloved Walkabout the cheer she deserves: Saaalute!

AM Scanner Traffic — 8.21.09

  • 11:50 a.m. An abandoned, blue Ford Focus is broken down on H95 @ Blackwell Island.
  • 11:42 a.m. Traffic n/b on H95 is tied up from Lacey Avenue/Hayden to Garwood.
  • 11:40 a.m. A blue pickup is pulling a trailer, which has a flat tire, on H95 @ Lancaster Road/Hayden.
  • 11:34 a.m. Patty has questions re: driving w/o a muffler.
  • 11:15 a.m. A dog trapped in a blue semi behind Hastings/Appleway may be abandoned.
  • 10:33 a.m. Employee @ Verizon @ Mineral Drive/CdA suffering chest pain.
  • 10:11 a.m. W/b stoplights aren’t recycling @ Government Way/Canfield.
  • 10:07 a.m. A man is either having a seizure or a detox episode in the woods behind Home Depot.
  • 9:38 a.m. A dog running into traffic is creating a hazard @ Government Way/Appleway.
  • 9:24 a.m. Jenny has questions for officers re: family dog that has become aggressive.
  • 9:14 a.m. A s/b maroon pickup is pulling a trailer with a smoking BBQ on it on H95 near Ohio Match Road.
  • 8:34 a.m. Resident @ Martin Point Road & H97/Harrison reports that an unknown boat with “Good Vibrations” on the side has been tied to his dock since Wednesday.

DFO: Yes, Gookin Can Win

Count me among those who believe that OpenCDAer Dan Gookin can defeat incumbent Councilwoman Deanna Goodlander in a municipal election this November. Unlike many challengers, Gookin has gained name recognition from his role as one of the main opponents to the Lake City Development Corp. and ongoing favorable treatment in the Coeur d’Alene Press. Gookin is organized and campaigns hard. He also has a group of Tea Bag conservatives in his corner who covet a seat on the council (as well as want to defeat Mike Kennedy). Gookin closed well in his 2007 campaign against popular Councilman Ron Edinger, losing by only 366 votes (2626 to 2260). He will appeal to those who are anti-incumbent, those who oppose urban renewal efforts, those who oppose the proposed 2% property tax hike when many city department heads are being paid handsomely, and those who simply would like to see an outsider on the council. On the other hand, Goodlander is considered the weakest link among the three council incumbents that are likely to win re-election. She’ll have to campaign hard to retain the seat/DFO.

D’s Rip Otter For Special Deals

The Idaho Democratic Party said today that former Idaho Transportation Department Director Pamela Lowe’s (pictured) dismissal and her subsequent legal action raise new concerns over ongoing mismanagement of the public’s trust by Gov. Butch Otter and other top Republicans. “This is just the latest example of rampant Republican cronyism, mismanagement and favoritism toward special interests,” said Jim Hansen, executive director of the Idaho Democratic Party. “From secret settlements arranged by the Idaho Tax Commission to corporate tax giveaways made at the expense of middle-class Idaho families, there’s a pattern here and Idahoans are growing tired of it”/Julie Fanselow, Idaho Democratic Party. More here.

Question: Do Idaho Democrats have a legitimate beef here?

10 Reasons For Anonymous Blogging

CindyH hits the nail on the head in a comment inside re: the “Top 10 Reasons for Anonymous Blogging.” I’ll post three out front. Make sure you follow the link to No. 10. (Hint: It’s a coffee spitter.) Cindy’s reasons:

  • 1. If it wasn’t for the Bush administration we could all blog under our real names without fear.
  • 2. I’d blog under my real name but Sarah Palin says if I do my name will appear before a death panel.
  • 3. Everyone knows the Obama administration designated a cyber czar to monitor Internet usage. They can track my HBO time, but by golly they can’t trace my super-secret pseudonym. Reasons 4-10 below.

Question: Tongue firmly cheeked, can you add to Cindy’s list?

Is Obama In ‘Over His Head’?

Item: Stephanopolous: Obama needs confidence boost/ABC News

More Info: The biggest problem for President Obama in today’s ABC News/Washington Post poll is this: only 49 percent of Americans are confident that he’ll “make the right decisions for the country’s future” — down from 60 percent in April. Voters still like Obama. His overall job approval is steady at 57 percent. But they’re screaming “listen to us” and “slow down.” And they’re worried he’s getting in over his head.

Question: Is President Obama in “over his head” in dealing with the national economy, health care, and international issues?

Racists Becoming More Active

A vandalized sign outside the office of Rep. David Scott, D-Ga., is shown earlier this month in Smyrna, Ga. Scott had a contentious community meeting on health care last week. Scott, who is black, said the swastika is the latest example of what he believes is an increasingly hateful and racist debate over reforming health care. The Atlanta lawmaker said he also has received mail in recent days that used N-word references to him, and that characterized President Barack Obama as a Marxist. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Question: At this moment, council representatives, police chiefs, and the Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations are meeting at the stateline to denounce recent distribution of Aryan Nations literature in area yards. Are you confident that the task force will be able to come up with a good approach to countering any renewal of a racist presence here?

Holly: Not Much To Do In Post Falls

Holly: I lived in PF for 20 years and visit at least once a month… Other than the parks, there’s nothing to do there except run errands. When I was in high school, my friends and I would walk around Walmart for fun because there wasn’t anything else to do in the evening for cheap.

Question: Is there much for teens and young adults to do in Post Falls?

UI Adopts Frosh Residency Rule

The University of Idaho has adopted a policy requiring all freshmen students to live on campus, beginning in fall 2010. That means the first-year students currently moving their clothes and books into apartments and dorm rooms are the final crop of freshman with the option of living off campus. Dean of Students Bruce Pitman said the new policy is part of a yearlong effort to increase retention from students’ freshman to sophomore years. … The new policy is expected to generate nearly $700,000 annually in extra revenues for university housing and dining services. The policy has been approved by UI President Duane Nellis and was heard Thursday by the Idaho State Board of Education/Halley Griffin, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here.

Question: Did the University of Idaho make the right decision?

Give ‘Im Catfish w/Broccoli On Side

On KVNI this morning, Jeff Smith of Fins & Feathers Tackle Shop was giving Norm Mahoney a rundown re: what fish are biting where when he mentioned that Fernan Lake is producing some nice catfish. At that point, Norm asked Jeff if catfish are good to eat. Jeff responded that some people love catfish, others hate the bottom feeders. Then, Norm asked Jeff if he liked to eat catfish. “Yeah, I like to eat those things,” responded Jeff. “Then, I like to eat broccoli, of all things.”

Question: Which would you prefer to eat — catfish or broccoli?

AM Headlines — 8.21.09

Krista Woodruff, right, a retired nurse and wife of a doctor, debates the proposed federal health care plan with Amy Biviano, left, the chair of the Spokane County Democrats outside the Spokane Club, where Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., was speaking to a Rotary Club group about issues including health care, Thursday in Spokane. Story here. (AP Photo/The Spokesman-Review, Jesse Tinsley)

HBO Poll: Gookin Or Goodlander?

“I really think there needs to be somebody to stand up for the taxpayer and be a good steward of the people’s money,” (Dan) Gookin said. “Right now I don’t see anyone doing that.” Gookin declared his intention to run for Coeur d’Alene City Council on Thursday, bidding for the 4-year seat held by incumbent Deanna Goodlander/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

  • Thursday Poll: In a tight vote, 44 of 86 (51%) respondents said colleges, like the University of Idaho, should require freshman to live on campus to help them “stay more involved in school.” Full results here.

Bumpersnicker …

… on a white Explorer parked in front of dentist Brent Unruh’s office this morning: “If you think you’re perfect, try walking on water.”

Me: Sharing HBO With Mom

Me: Many of you remember that my Mom passed away in October. We took her ashes to the Ocean in Oregon in May. I have her computer - she is the one that introduced me to computers and thus my profession … I needed her computer to get into her accounts and close them down etc. Over the years her computer wizardry had gone downhill and I had to help her more and more — with smaller and smaller things … I just happened to look at her favorites tonight and I see she had Huckleberries online linked - it was under media. That makes me happy. I am like her, she was like me.

Question: I appreciated Me’s comment from last night a lot. But I’m re-posting it here to remind you to share HBO with friends and family that don’t know about this site. HBO has grown quite a bit in the past 5 1/2 years. But there’s always room for more Merry Hucksters and blurkers. If you like what you see here, let others know. Now, back to your regular programming.

Pip: Gookin Will Win

Pip: I think Gookin will get the seat either way. His discussion of the budget last week was spot on. Requesting the government to take a closer look at the budget and be more fiscally responsible does not make him a dissenter. It makes him electable. Anybody who disregards what is best for the majority is not ‘safe.’ Not even MikeK or mayor Bloem. It will be interesting to see who else throws their hat in the ring.

Question: Can you envision the possibility of a uber-conservative ticket, featuring Dan Gookin, sweeping into power in the Coeur d’Alene city elections (as Jim Fromm and the Gang of Four did in the early 1980s)?

Anderson: Bomber’s Reward

Nick Anderson/Houston Chronicle

Wild Card/Thursday — 8.20.09

Frum Helen Back reports via private e-mail that there may have been an interruption in SR/Huckleberries Online service around 9:30 this morning. Back things seem to be back to as normal as they can be around here (other than the fact that I forgot to post this Wild Card when I got to work, as promised recently. I’ll get it down yet.) For those lucky Merry Hucksters who can be outside today, enjoy the sunshine and remember those of us who are stuck indoors. Now, for your Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 8.20.09

Afghan women voters line up to cast their ballots at a polling station in Kabul Thursday. Afghans voted under the shadow of Taliban threats of violence Thursday to choose their next president for a nation plagued by armed insurgency, drugs, corruption and a feeble government nearly eight years after the U.S.-led invasion. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

Question: Would you risk being the target of violence to vote?

Huckleberries Hears II …

… that this is the tentative lineup for the fall City Council elections:

  • Dan Gookin vs. incumbent Deanna Goodlander
  • Steve Adams vs. incumbent Woody McEvers
  • Jim Brannon vs. incumbent Mike Kennedy
  • Joe Kunka and Josh Arnold vs. incumbent Mayor Sandi Bloem

Gookin announced his intentions to run against Goodlander at the Fortgrounds Tavern @ 3:30 p.m. today. He’d scheduled to make the announcement @ 3. But waited another half hour for the Coeur d’Alene Press to appear. The Press reporter never did. So he went ahead. He didn’t say much to the 25 individuals gathered, other than he gained experience from his unsuccessful 2007 run against Ron Edinger. And that Suzy Snedaker will be his campaign treasurer. The first day to file is Monday (thru Sept. 4).

Question: Can Gookin beat Goodlander for her council seat? And/or: Do you think Gookin, Brannon & Adams will run as a ticket?

PM Headlines — 8.20.09

Jerry Purkey with Tri-State Sign Company lifts a repaired fiberglass elephant back onto its perch atop the White Elephant store in Spokane Valley Wednesday. Suffering the effects of age, the elephant needed reinforcing, patching up and repainting. Improvements include mounting a ball on the end of the trunk and adding lighting behind the eyes. Store owner John Conley bought the display elephant in 1974 from the Armour Meat Packing plant after it closed. (Colin Mulvany/SR)

APhoto Of The Day — 8.20.09

Singer Britney Spears presents the “Top Ten Ways the Country Would Be Different if Britney Spears Were President,” on the “Late Show with David Letterman,” Tuesday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/CBS)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. “If I was Precedent I would have my Interior Secretary redo my Cabinet, ‘cause you know, like, I gotta have granite tops, cherry wood and those cute little door-opener things I saw at Justin’s house. And, I’d bust that Attorney General. I mean, like, why does the military need a lawyer. And, like why a General? Maybe a Sergeant or something. And, definitely, first thing, I’d ask why they’ve got those judges and put Diana Ross (duh) on that Supreme’s court” 
  • 2. Formerly Sandpoint.
  • 3. And if you don’t vote for me, I’ll shave off my head, run over paparazzi’s feet, bash in cars, eat nothing but junk food, blimp out, and neglect my children —  JeanieS.
  • HM: Aliasjax  

PM Scanner Traffic — 8.20.09

  • 4:45 p.m. A bicyclist is on the ground in front of Great Harvest/Government Way & Ironwood, after a crash w/an SUV. Update: Officer reports that teen crashed bike. He wasn’t hit by car.
  • 4:22 p.m. 3YO boy in 600 block of Catherine/Post Falls has swallowed an unknown amount of ink from a pen.
  • 3:29 p.m. A 70YO female has suffered multi fractures in a fall down stairs on West Shoreline/Post Falls.
  • 2:55 p.m. EMTs are transporting a 20ish female who is 8 months pregnant from a two-vehicle, blocking crash @ Pleasantview & Seltice/Post Falls.
  • 2:45 p.m. A bicyclist is bleeding from his side after being hit by a semi on e/b off-ramp of I-90 Spokane Street/Post Falls. More below.

Cop Apologizes For Facebook Quip

Item: Bozeman officer apologizes for saying on Facebook that “stupid” people should be jailed/Jodi Hausen, Bozeman Chronicle

More Info: Anderson’s Facebook postings about jailing “stupid” people and how he enjoys “messing” with the public are cited in a lawsuit filed against him and other officers last week. The suit accuses the officers of illegally entering a man’s home and unjustly arresting him in February. Although Anderson is being disciplined for his actions, he is not being fired.

Question: Would you like to see ‘stupid’ people jailed?

DM: There Won’t Be Another Dog

There will not be another dog. I know many of you think we’ll change our mind. Bacchus was a wonderful and deeply loved member of the family and it will take some time for the heartache to heal. The emotional roller coaster has taken a toll on both of us. I know that grief is part of the price of having a pet that you will out live but at our age we’re not sure that would again be the case. Eight or ten years down the road we’re not at all sure we’d be able to handle the emotional stress nor do we want to go through it again. If we aren’t here we have no one to take care of one left behind. We’ve had six over our forty years together, and for us, that’s enough/Dogwalk Musings. More here.

HBO Blogosphere — 8.20.09

Escapee/Atmospheric Ruminations offers this photoshop of a raccoon, nicknamed Houdini, who appeared on HBO Wednesday via the AP photo wire.

HBO Numbers (for Wednesday, Aug. 19): 8401/4914

In The News: Lockerbie Bomber Free

Libyan Abdel Baset al-Megrahi, top, left, using stick, who was found guilty of the 1988 Lockerbie bombing, is accompanied by Seif al-Islam el- Gadhafi, son of Libyan leader Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi upon his arrival at an airport in Tripoli, Libya, Thursday. Scotland freed the terminally ill Lockerbie bomber on compassionate grounds Thursday, allowing him to die at home in Libya despite American protests that mercy should not be shown to the man responsible for the deaths of 270 people. Story here. (AP Photo/ Amr Nabil)

Question: Do you think the Lockerbie bomber should have been released from prison because of a terminal illness?

23YO Wants Input On PF Campaign

I am Matt Behringer. Some may have seen me post on here as mjbehri in the past but am normally is blurking around. I am the 23 year old that people in Post Falls and CdA saw yesterday morning in the Press running for mayor in Post Falls, I got some interesting to say the least comments on their website,I want to get some more from you guys on here what do you think of my Campaign for mayor and what would you like to have happen to Post Falls?

Question: So what do you think re: the attempt by 23YO HBO blurker Matt Behringer’s attempt to unseat veteran Mayor Clay Larkin?

Citizens Fight Silver Valley Repository

Item: Top Superfund official hears waste concerns: Halting repository could cause cleanup delays/Becky Kramer, SR

More Info: A citizens group asked the nation’s top Superfund official to halt construction of a mine waste repository at East Mission Flats during a Wednesday meeting in Idaho’s Silver Valley. Storing 40,000 truckloads of waste in the Coeur d’Alene River’s floodplain is too risky, said members of the Silver Valley Community Resource Center. “It’s the worst place to build a repository,” said Barbara Miller, who heads the center. “The people have said no to it.” Mathy Stanislaus listened, but he made no promises.

Question: Does the citizens group have a legitimate complaint or is it being a NIMBY?

In-store Booze Taste Test Rejected

Item: Liquor chief’s idea for in-store ‘tasting’ rejected/Jared S. Hopkins, Twin Falls Times-News

More Info: A free sample in a supermarket aisle can prompt a shopper’s impulse buy of everything from pigs-in-a-blanket to mango flavored juice. Could a free shot of top-shelf booze also boost sales at state liquor stores? Idaho liquor czar Dyke Nally in July proposed free tastings at state-owned stores as a way to increase revenue, but officials in Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter’s Division of Financial Management balked at the idea. It was one of four ideas floated for vetting before formal presentation to the Legislature for approval.

Question: Do you see a problem with the state liquor stores offering free, in-store samples?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 9.20.09

This May 24, 2007, photo made available by Mike Madel shows the pad of the second-largest grizzly bear ever recorded after it was captured in the 10,000-square-mile Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem measures 7 1/8 inches across. State wildlife officials are investigating the death of one of Montana’s biggest grizzly bears, a male that stood more than 7 1/2 feet tall. Story here. (AP Photo/Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, Mike Madel)

High Noon: Bugs In The Freezer

There’s a butterfly in my freezer. And a moth, a stink bug, an ant, a fly and something green with wings. I tend to forget they’re there, but when I asked a guest to hand me the ice cream the other night, her shrill scream reminded me. She pointed to the plastic sandwich bags that had slid out of the freezer along with the Rocky Road. “Bugs!” she gasped. I also often forget that not everyone has small boys in their home. All of my sons went through a bug-collecting phase. They’d take plastic containers out to the backyard and dig up bugs and worms. They gave their creatures names (Gus Grasshopper, Cody Cricket and Slimy Stu – genus unknown) and fashioned elaborate homes for them/CindyH, SR Voices. More here.

Question: Do you know what’s in your freezer?

Huckleberries Hears …

… that Linda Mullin Cook, the former Helen Chenoweth-Hage staffer who was involved in a North Idaho College flap two years ago, was sitting with Jim Brannon at the City Council minutes Tuesday, taking copious notes. Cook, as you may recall, was a student who demanded and received back her tuition money after she complained that part-time English instructor Jessica Bryan regularly bashed Republicans and the Bush administration during classroom discussions. According to sources, Cook hasn’t attended a council meeting in recent memory. Her appearance with Brannon fuels speculation that she’ll be involved in his council race. Meanwhile, the filing period for municipal elections begins Monday. Stay tuned.

AM Scanner Traffic — 8.20.09

  • 11:58 a.m. Woman complaining of neck injury after 2-vehicle crash @ Chase & Poleline/Post Falls.
  • 11:51 a.m. R/P complains that skaters regularly are jumping their boards b/n his property and an adjoining business.
  • 11:45 a.m. A disabled vehicle is blocking traffic @ H95 & Kathleen/CdA.
  • 11:08 a.m. R/P reports that oil has been dumped “all over the ground” around a local tobacco hut.
  • 11:05 a.m. W/b traffic lights are out @ 15th & Sherman/CdA.
  • 11:03 a.m. R/P reports large, attended bonfire in 2700 block of Lutherhaven may be violating a burn ban.
  • 11:01 a.m. Motorist reports that his window was smashed on H95, 2-3 miles south of Silverwood, when a rock was thrown out the window of another vehicle.
  • 10:20 a.m. A woman on Juno/Hayden reports that her tires were slashed.
  • 9:55 a.m. Motorist reports that a vehicle with vanity plates that read 2NASTY4U is driving recklessly on I-90.
  • 9:37 a.m. Willard reports that there’s no need for a fire response to his Hayden residence. His fire alarm was set off by burning food.
  • 9:16 a.m. Lynn reports a stolen outboard motor.
  • 8:28 a.m. A father and a son are involved in a physical fight in the Mica Flats area.

IdaBlue: Government Isn’t A Business

It’s common for a political candidate to run on the idea that he or she was in business, and that experience will apply to government. The politician asserts that government ought to be run like a business. This is a load of hooey. Gov Otter has tried to use this approach, and actually seems to persist in the endeavor, despite its lack of success. His approach has been somewhat businesslike. He has acted like the boss/owner/manager in that he seems to think that he can just hand down an edict and it will be carried out. Think of last year when he demanded $240 mil (or whatever it was) for transportation. He correctly identified the need, but, he’s not the boss of the legislature and can’t just order it to cough up the dough, and it refused/IdaBlue. More here.

Question: Do you agree w/IdaBlue that government can’t be run like a business?

LMT: Sweeney Was A Public Servant

As a high school and college track star, Bruce Sweeney learned to rely on himself. “The reason I liked it is the only one you had to depend on is you. You’re either there or you’re not there,” he recently told the Tribune’s Kerri Sandaine. Of course, if a track star falters, so does his team’s overall performance. A former Air Force pilot, Sweeney was crazy about airplanes. It wasn’t unusual to hear him planning a contingency landing in a forested area if one were necessary. A pilot has as much invested in his success as his passengers, but he alone is responsible. At various times, Sweeney, who died Tuesday at 77 from bone cancer, was a businessman, school board member and volunteer track coach. But it was at the state level where you saw his attributes. Against a backdrop of regional and petty party politics, Sweeney was a big-picture public servant/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Sweeney was one of those rare politicians who could be considered a statesman. Which other Idaho legislator, past or present, would you assign that noble label to?

Don Hewitt, 86, ‘60 Minutes,’ RIP

In this Jan. 17, 2004, file photo, against a backdrop of the famous “60 Minutes” stop watch, Don Hewitt, the program’s creator and executive producer, reads prepared remarks to reporters during a session on “60 Minutes” during CBS’ Winter Press Tour in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles. Hewitt, 86, the newsman who invented “60 Minutes” and produced the popular newsmagazine for 36 years, died, according to CBS. Story here. (AP Photo/Rene Macura, file)

Question: Are you a “60 Minutes” watcher? Why?

CH: Is There A Bias Against GEDs?

Item: GED center provides plenty of room to learn: New school has up to three times more space than previous one/Cindy Hval, SR Voices

More Info: Several weeks ago, when the staff of the Spokane Valley GED Center learned they needed to vacate the University Center, it seemed like bad news. Summer quarter was in full swing with 58 students enrolled. However, according to instructor Bill Bussard, that unsettling news turned out to be an unexpected blessing.

Question (from CindyH): Do you think there’s a bias against folks who receive a GED certificate instead of a traditional high school diploma? A lot of the students I spoke with were concerned that employers might think a GED wasn’t as good as a diploma.

Problem With Anonymous Bloggers

Bloggers beware… If you choose to trash-talk online and insult people, you may not be able to hide behind a web of anonymity. Canadian model Liskula Cohen says she was unfairly trashed by an anonymous blogger last year through Google’s Blogger.com service. The blogger’s page, called “Skanks in NYC,” was largely devoted to trashing Cohen. The former Vogue model took Google to court, demanding the blogger’s identity so she could sue for damages. A Manhattan Supreme Court judge ordered Google to release the blogger’s information. In the aftermath, Cohen has forgiven the blogger, who turned out to be an acquaintance. And Google has apologized/Andrew Cohen’s Corner, Crimesider. More here.

  • H/T: Nic

Question: And you wonder why I keep tight reins on the handful of elbow throwers here?

$260M Powerball Ticket Sold Here

Amber Baldwin, right, assistant manager at the Murphy USA store in Columbia, S.C. sells a South Carolina Education Lottery ticket to Laura Myers, 60, of Columbia. This is the store that sold the winning $259.9 million Powerball ticket. (AP Photo/Mary Ann Chastain)

Question: Why do you play Powerball — given the extremely long odds?

Poll: Should Frosh Live In Dorms?

  • Wednesday Poll: 49 of 118 (42%) responses voted that individuals involved in vandalism or graffiti should be required to clean up their handiwork as punishment. Full results here.

Poll: US Tired Of Afghan War

As President Obama concludes weeks of intense — and increasingly desperate — salesmanship on his keystone and embattled healthcare reform plans, a discouraging alarm arrived today that he may soon have to devote his selling skills toward a less interesting but more dangerous area of concern for him: The war in Afghanistan. Secure parts of that country vote in a presidential election Thursday. And quietly coming through the bureaucratic defense pipeline is a request for even more U.S. troops, on top of the compromise 17,000 additional Obama approved last winter. Current U.S. troop strength there is 62,000, scheduled to jump to 68,000 in coming weeks. But today a new Washington Post/ABC News poll reveals that a majority of Americans nowbelieve that historically troubled land is not worth fighting for — and only 24% back a troop increase. While 45% say the American troop commitment there should actually be reduced/Los Angeles Times.

Question: Is Afghanistan worth continuing to fight for?

Minnick To Appear At Tea Party

U.S. Rep. Walt Minnick has agreed to appear at a town hall meeting Saturday hosted by Tea Party Boise, which drew thousands to an April 15 rally to protest taxes and government spending. Minnick, a Democrat who has become a minor national figure for opposing the stimulus package and other government spending, will appear from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the ballroom at the Owyhee Plaza Hotel in Boise. … The event was announced by e-mail late Wednesday by the Tea Party group. Minnick spokesman John Foster confirmed that Minnick will attend. “They asked, we accepted,” Foster said/Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman.

Question: Will Minnick’s appearance at the Boise Tea Party drive a major wedge between him and the national Demo party?

AM Headlines — 8.20.09

Melissa Scott Jenkins appears in an Ada County Courtroom in Boise, Idaho, Wednesday for an arraignment hearing. Jenkins and her boyfriend Daniel Ehrlick Jr. were arrested on Tuesday on first-degree murder charges in the death of her 8-year-old son Robert Manwill. Story here. (AP Photo/Shawn Raecke, Idaho Statesman)

CW: Facing The Inevitable

Christie Wood: (Dogwalk Musings), I am very sorry about Bacchus. Dogs capture our hearts and it is painful when they leave us. Oscar moves a lot slower these days and is having trouble with is eyes. I dread the inevitable. He is sitting next to me snoring loudly as I type this. You and your sweet dog are in my thoughts.

Question: Do you have an older dog?

K-Mama: Going Back To School

Kendramama: My proudest achievements have been getting into counseling, realizing I need it, plus can’t just pizzle away my life (after all, I’m gonna be 33 on the 28th- yikes!) so … I also took the big step of enrolling in NIC late start this fall semester, 3/4 time. Full time come Spring. For now, lots of online courses, a few actual classroom classes, and mainly a bunch of pre-reqs to knock out of the way to pave the way to my double major in Education and Social Work.

Question: Did you return to school at some point in your adult life? Why?

Dad’s Diner Review: Hot Dog Hut

It is said that Americans eat an average of 60 hot dogs a year per person. Wow! If that’s the case I am waaay under average. But I do know people who love their hot dogs & sausages. I was told by some friends of mine that one of the best places to get a “good” hot dog was from the lady on the side of the road on Government Way in Coeur d’alene. They knew of no name for the business except for “the lady in a little shack on the side of the road”. After doing a little investigative work (driving up & down the street) I discovered the Original Hot Dog & Gyros Hut located at 5955 N. Government Way/Dad’s Diner. More here.

Question: Do you ever stop at the food huts around town?

Heller: Me & My T-Shirt

Joe Heller/Hellertoons

Hump Day Wild Card — 8.19.09

After reading Dogwalk Musings today, I’m sad to report that DM’s beloved Saint Bernard, Bacchus, has died following a lengthy struggle with health issues. Bacchus, of course, inspired DM to launch her blog as a place to put down the thoughts she had during walks in her neighborhood with him. DM got Bacchus as a puppy during a tough patch in her life, I believe. Which makes the bond between them even stronger. Remember DM in your thoughts today. You can see her post about Bacchus here.

Parting Shot — 8.19.09

Earlier, I published one photo of Twin Lakes from talented HBO shooter MikeS, probably taken 3-4 years ago. Now, I’ll publish the other. Both are so good that I kept them when we switched over to the new blogware. Enjoy.

SR’s Today In Photos

Man Survives 3 Crashes On Same Road

The only survivor of a crash on Lovell Valley Road near Plummer, Idaho has survived two other one-car crashes on that same road. Joseph M. Matt, 24, of Worley, was thrown from a 1997 Jeep Cherokee about 1:10 p.m. on Tuesday after the car left the road and vaulted nearly 250 feet, taking off the tops of two trees. William “Sonny” A. Davison, 22, of Desmet, was also ejected and died at the scene. Alcohol was a factor in the crash, according to Idaho State Police, and investigators haven’t determined who was driving. Matt’s sister, Veronica J. Matt, died in a crash on Lovell Valley Road March 26, along with her mother, Juanita A. Garcia, 42, who was driving. Veronica was driving a 2003 Chevy Blazer when it veered off the road/Meghann M. Cuniff, Sirens & Gavels. More here.

Sandpoint Bar Protests Vick Signing

Football season is just around the corner, but customers at one local sports bar will have to find new accommodations if they planned on watching any Philadelphia Eagles games or drinking any Coors Light. Steve Coffman, owner of Slates Prime Time Grill and Sports Bar, is boycotting the Eagles and its corporate sponsors — including the makers of both Coors and Miller beer — until the team releases Michael Vick, its newly acquired quarterback. Vick, who spent two years in prison for his role in a dog fighting ring, signed a two-year contract with the Eagles late last week. An animal lover with three dogs of his own, Coffman said he was disgusted by the Vick case and the NFL for allowing him back into the league. When he learned of a national boycott called “Sack Vick,” Coffman decided to join the cause/Conor Christofferson, Bonner County Bee. More here.

Question: What do you think of the action taken by Sandpoint sports bar owner Steve Coffman to protest the Eagles signing of QB Michael Vick?

PM Headlines — 8.19.09

The North Idaho College resident advisers participated in a volunteer project through Habitat for Humanity as part of their annual staff training project. The Habitat for Humanity house in Bonners Ferry was designed by a former NIC resident adviser Ray Sayers. Pictured are current NIC resident advisers (front) Frances Walker, Tiffany Mayne, Gavin Krieg, Jillian Anderson, Sabrena Cossairt, (back) Ann Truesdell, residence life alumni Sayers, Jeff Howard and NIC Residence Life Director Paula Czirr. (NIC Photo) 

APhoto Of The Day — 8.19.09

Bea, a three-year-old giraffe, and Wilma, an ostrich, share a moment recently at Busch Gardens in Tampa Bay, Florida’s 65-acre Serengeti Plain. Just as they do on Africa’s plains, the animals usually hang out with their own species. But recently, zoo keepers at Busch Gardens noticed the unlikely pair that just can’t seem to get enough of one another. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Busch Gardens, Matt Marriott)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Extreme necking in public — Whippersnapper.
  • 2. Tastes like chicken — Charlie.
  • 3. Here, Wilma, sweetie, you have a little spinach right there. Ah, got it. {smooch} — JeanieS.
  • HM: Redman

PM Scanner Traffic — 8.19.09

  • 5:25 p.m. Mountain West/Ironwood reports a suspicious looking couple in bank.
  • 5:19 p.m. A red pickup has hit the guardrail & crashed into the trees on H41 & Spirit Lake Cut-across.
  • 5:12 p.m. Shirtless man is lying on the roadway @ I-90 & Pleasantview/Post Falls. ISP officer reports it’s the same subject as this morning.
  • 4:53 p.m. Boat & trailer parked at Kingfisher Court & Riverview (south of Spokane River) will be a safety hazard after dark.
  • 4:07 p.m. Resident on Elm/CdA says neighborhood juveniles put a tire on her front step.
  • 3:37 p.m. R/P reports a drunken male is piloting a Chris-Craft boat from Harrison, holding a beer after drinking at a local tavern. More below.

Sunset On Twin Lakes

Her message back was appropriate and I even returned to the beach later in the evening and noticed that the nerdy kid whose family has a pretty nice boat had even found the groove of August. He’s cruising slowly around the lake with a girl, playing country music and the two of them are singing at the top of their lungs. No one is much on the water, maybe a canoe or two, and the exuberance can be heard as far as the opposite shore. When the boat putts past my place “Thank God I’m a Country Boy” is cranking from the boat speakers and they are two-stepping on deck. August is the month where summer fits like an old pair of hiking boots and the frenetic days of July are long past/Mike S (who also snapped the wonderful scenic above). Full post below.

Question: Where does August rank in your months of the year?

HBO Blogosphere — 8.19.09

At A Family Runs Through It, Idaho Dad figured he’d have time to catch some Zzzz in a hammock when his son became old enough to mow the lawn. He figured wrong. More here.

Question: How old were your kids when you trusted them enough to handle the lawn mower?

Obama To Unveil ‘Cash For Codgers’?

“I have obtained an advanced copy of the proposal which is named … “CASH FOR CODGERS” and it works like this… Couples wishing to access health care funds in order to pay for the delivery of a child will be required to turn in one old person. The amount the government grants them will be fixed according to a sliding scale. Older and more prescription dependent codgers will garner the highest amounts. Special “Bonuses” will be paid for those submitting codgers in targeted groups, such as smokers, alcohol drinkers, persons 10 pounds over their government prescribed weight, and any member of the Republican Party”/The Spoof. More here.

Question: This, of course, is a spoof (that Cindy e-mailed to me). However, let’s say you could turn in a codger for health care services. Who would you turn in? Why?

He Didn’t Shake Hands, But …

A coupla days ago, I asked if you’d ever shaken hands with a president. Don Sausser, HBO’s Eye On Sherman Avenue, responded in a private e-mail that he hadn’t. But he got dang close. Take if away, Don: “I haven’t shaken any hands but here is a picture I took of President Truman at Fort Lewis while I was in the Army (1958). I managed my way out of the infantry and into a battle group photographer back in the days of 4x5” speed graphic view cameras.”

Question: Anyone else besides me appreciate “Give-‘Em-Hell” Harry S Truman?

All UI Frosh To Live On Campus?

The University of Idaho wants to make all first-year students live on campus — a move that officials say could boost university housing revenue by nearly $400,000 and campus dining services by $300,000. UI President Duane Nellis has approved the proposal, and the school will present it to the State Board of Education on Thursday. School leaders say the move would also boost residence hall occupancy by 100 students, and could raise the number of students who return from college after their first year from 79 percent to 85 percent/AP.

Question: Did you stay in a dorm while in college? Good experience? Bad experience?

Lawyer: FBI Trained Blogger To Incite

A New Jersey blogger facing charges in two states for allegedly making threats against lawmakers and judges was trained by the FBI on how to be deliberately provocative, his attorney said Tuesday. Hal Turner worked for the FBI from 2002 to 2007 as an “agent provocateur” and was taught by the agency “what he could say that wouldn’t be crossing the line,” defense attorney Michael Orozco said. “His job was basically to publish information which would cause other parties to act in a manner which would lead to their arrest,” Orozco said/AP.

Question: Ah, any of you HBO commenters trained by the FBI?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 8.19.09

Stacey Fog, background fourth from left, is reunited with his 1969 Mustang in Boise on Monday evening, after friends surprised him with the car restored with a unique shade of candy apple red and custom upholstery and more. Fog’s 1969 Mustang was painted, upholstered and restored in a community effort with donated and at-cost services by local painters and craftsmen. Fog’s brother Chris Fog and father, John Fog, decided to restore the car on their own while Stacey was undergoing treatment for cancer. As word got out about their plan, more and more people donated their time, services and materials to make it happen. (AP Photo/The Idaho Statesman, Darin Oswald)

Church Not Involved In Road Rage

A van involved in a road rage incident in north Spokane Friday has been connected to a man in the Cheney area, and the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office is asking for helping finding him. The van’s Washington license plate was traced to a church in Post Falls, but the owner has sold the van and doesn’t remember the buyer’s name, said Sgt. Dave Reagan. The incident began when the van cut off a motorcycle while southbound on Newport Highway, according to the Sheriff’s Office/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR. More here.

High Noon: Rocky Raccoon

A 25-pound male raccoon is shown on the city hall roof Tuesday. Named “Houdini” by a city animal control officer who finally caught the resourceful mammal after a thirty minute chase. Authorities said it was not showing any sign of having rabies and was resting at an animal shelter while being evaluated for release. (AP Photo/New York City Hall)

Question: Have you ever had a close encounter with a raccoon?

AM Scanner Traffic — 8.19.09

  • 11:53 a.m. 50ish woman has collapsed in the Post Falls Post Office.
  • 11:48 a.m. DMV reports a possible wanted man from California is sitting in office.
  • 11:37 a.m. R/P on Cougar Gulch Road has contained a neighbor’s black horse — again.
  • 11:32 a.m. A 100-pound sack of grain is lying on the e/b passing lane of I-90 @ M/P 17 (Mullan Road).
  • 11:08 a.m. A man with “greasy, long black hair” and a yellow jacket tied around his waist is staggering along I-90 @ M/P 14 (15th Street/CdA).
  • 10:58 a.m. Left turn signal @ Seltice Way & Greensferry is stuck on red.
  • 10:46 a.m. Estranged father is trying to break into a house on Lookout Drive/Hayden to get his kids.
  • 10:03 a.m. 90YO female is unconscious in front of Hallmark Store on Ironwood/CdA.
  • 10:02 a.m. Teen threatening to harm himself in new subdivision off Poleline/Post Falls.
  • 9:46 a.m. R/P is in KCSD lobby to report theft of his bobcat from Three Forks/Hauser.
  • 9:45 a.m. 2 motorists called to say that a man is slumped over a bag on the I-90 onramp @ Pleasantview. ISP reports later that the man was a sleeping transient.
  • 8:40 a.m. R/P near Deerhaven/Dalton Gardens reports neighbor is shooting deer w/BBs.
  • 8:37 a.m. Unattended death of 83YO man on Grand Teton/Rathdrum.
  • 8:31 a.m. Unlawful entry @ Borah Elementary/CdA.
  • 8:15 a.m. A brown-and-white horse is running loose on the Centennial Trail.
  • 8:10 a.m. Resident on Peridot/Hayden reports recurring problem w/getting house egged.

Hat Tip: Chris Guggemos

A Huckleberries Online hat tip goes to Chris Guggemos of Handshake Productions who's the shaker behind the free summer concerts that we enjoy locally in five locations, including City Park (1-4 p.m. Sundays), Sherman Square Park (6-8:30 p.m. Tuesdays), Hayden City Park (Wednesdays), Rathdrum City Park (Fridays), and Deer Park City Park (Saturdays) Since 1992, Chris has collected enough doughnations from local merchants and community to present the concerts, including HBO's own HMOffsuite (who helped sponsor the Ryan Larson Band last night at Sherman Park Square). As a result of Chris' tireless efforts to spotlight local bands, I've heard Big Red Barn (blues, acoustics) and Ryan Larsen's western band this week. The concerts at Hayden and Rathdrum are over for the year. The last concerts at CdA City Park and Sherman Square will feature the “Rhythm Dogs” and Beatles music, respectively. Chris's efforts make living here in the summer that much better. Saaalute.

DFO: I've been considering a “Hat Tip” feature at HBO for some time. I'll run them as they come up. If you want to give someone a hat tip, send your nomination to me, with an explanation for the hat tip.

TG: Task Force Targets Aryan Threat

News Release: As many of you may be aware,the Aryan Nation has once again been making headlines in our area by distributing their hateful message in neighborhoods throughout Coeur d’Alene and have now expanded to the Spokane Valley. The Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations will team with mayors and police chiefs of several Inland Northwest cities as well as the Spokane and Kootenai County sheriffs departments by holding a press conference at 10 a.m. Friday to condemn the hate message of this literature. The press conference will be at the old Interstate 90 bridge at the Washington-Idaho border on the north side of the freeway/Thom George, Kootenai County Democrats.

FB: Missoula Targets Panhandlers

The Missoula City Council has enacted an “emergency” ban on “aggressive” panhandling, No more touching without asking, following someone around, or using violence. (I think there might have already been a law about that?) It bans soliciting near ATMs and within six feet of an entrance to a building. And it prohibits telling lies to get money which is going to put a serious kink in political campaigning over there in Montana/Tom Von Alten, Fort Boise. More here.

Question: Have you been accosted by an aggressive panhandler?

MW: Bible Ban Akin To Book Burning

Again, the Bible doesn’t belong to one denomination. Your assumption that it should be banned from public schools isn’t based on the Idaho Constitution. It’s akin to book-burning. I wanted my kids to attend Nampa Classical Academy because I wanted them to receive a classical education, not a religious education. I’m not trying to use charter schools as a back door for religious education, and resent the Press-Tribune editorial board for assuming that’s what parents are trying to do/Marci Whitehead, Nampa (Idaho Press Tribune letter). More here. H/T: Treasured Valley

Question: Do you agree/disagree with letter writer Marci Whitehead’s point that banning the Bible as a literary resource in school is similar to book burning?

Prepping For Pageant

Kristen Dalton, Miss USA 2009, pre-tapes her opening number Tuesday for the Miss Universe 2009 competition in Nassau, Bahamas. (AP Photo/Miss Universe Organization, Richard D. Salyer)

Question: Do you still watch beauty pageants? Which one(s)?

HBO Poll: Dealing With Vandals

  • Tuesday’s Poll: 71 of 81 (88%) said that Avista is overcharging for power. Full results here.

DH: Let Vandals Wear Pink

Break out the pink jumpsuits and the sandwich boards. They can wear the jumpsuits while they’re repairing the damage they caused. When they’ve completed their community service, let them march up and down Main Avenue with the sandwich boards that explain how they vandalized public property. For far too long we have tolerated scuzzbuckets who ruin things for the rest of us. A report in this newspaper last week detailed how the city had locked up new restrooms at Aqua Park because vandals continued to wreak havoc on the $75,000 taxpayer investment. Priscilla Derry, a former member of the city council, expressed her outrage in a letter-to-the-editor. She said the damage done by vandals disgusted her and that she was tired of seeing her tax money wasted. She asked that the courts do more to punish anyone caught in an act of vandalism. She’s right/Dan Hammes, St. Maries Gazette-Record. More here.

Question: How should we deal with vandals who are convicted of their crime?

Racist Trying To Resurrect Aryans

The Aryan Nations is experiencing an unwanted resurgence in North Idaho. Richard Butler and the Aryan Nations placed a black eye on North Idaho for years with their message of hate, until a lawsuit and Butler’s death mostly wiped them out. However, a man named Paul Mullet claims he is going to bring the racist organization back. “I’m bringing the church back and it’s going to stay,” Mullet told KREM 2 News. “The Aryan Nations in North Idaho never left, it’s just been quiet.” Mullet says he moved here from Ohio five months ago because North Idaho is the “last stand” for the Aryan Nations movement. Mullet says he’s in the process of buying a large amount of land in the area/KREM. More here.

Question: Do you think Mullet’s attempt to resurrect the Aryan Nations in North Idaho is legitimate? Or simply a publicity stunt?

AM Headlines — 8.19.09

Seattle’s famously green voters have rejected a 20-cent charge on plastic and paper bags, instituted by their city officials. It was the first such tax in the nation. See story below. 

Question: Why do you think that even environmentally sensitive residents of Seattle would oppose a 20-cent grocery bag tax?

Post Falls Drops 2% Tax Hike Plan

Item: Post Falls abandons property tax hike: City Council hears citizens’ concerns; more budget cuts must be made/Brian Walker, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: Wipe out the proposed 1.68 percent property tax increase with more cuts. That’s what the Post Falls City Council unanimously directed city staff to do Tuesday night after hearing six residents oppose the city’s proposed fiscal 2010 budget, mostly the tax hike plan. The decision means department heads will have to find an additional $141,000 in cuts.

Question: The city of Coeur d’Alene is proposing a 2 percent property tax hike. Should the Coeur d’Alene council follow the lead of Post Falls and balance the budget by making more cuts?

S&G: New Details On Resort Death

The Louisiana couple involved in the fatal fall at the Coeur d’Alene Resort were arguing and drinking that night, court documents show. Witnesses heard Lynea M. Sprung Hambrice, 36, telling Ian E. James, 38, to stop hurting her about 12:15 a.m. on July 30 - 19 minutes before James called 911 and said his girlfriend wanted to kill herself and had jumped off the balcony, according to minutes from a search warrant hearing. Judge Scott Wayman authorized the search warrant that allowed detectives to scour room 1268 at the luxury lakeside resort. The couple had checked in that afternoon and planed to stay four nights. James’ 20th high school reunion was that weekend in Kellogg. Police seized a laptop, a ring, a watch, a purse, a cell phone and a prescription bottle made out to Hambrice/Meghann Cuniff, Sirens & Gavels. More here.

OTV: Political Threads Are Boring

OrangeTV: I do the same thing, DFO. The political blah-blah-blah gets so boring that I find myself completely skipping posts and threads that involve the same recycled left/right arguments, accusations, insults and innuendos that constantly appear like tape loops that ever end, just keep looping and looping until eventually all you can hear is an indistinguishable fuzzy noise.

DFO: Political threads have value until they devolve into repetition and name calling. We have individuals here who argue the key points of national issues well. We also have an individual or two with chips on their shoulders who glom onto political threads to continue petty fights. That’s where the deletion key comes into play.

LS: No Health Insurance For Me

Larry Spencer: I do not have insurance by choice. I have not incurred more than an average of several hundred dollars in medical expenses per year for my entire life, and I would guess the number to be more like $8,000 total, including dental and eyesight (contact lenses). How do I do it? I take care of myself, I don’t run off to the doctor because I get the flu and demand he give me something for it, and my doctor visits only cost about $60, as I recall from the last time I went a couple years ago. Yes, a real doctor, in a real office, with a MD after his name, right here in Hayden. Full post below.

Question: Would you feel comfortable dropping your health insurance?

Anderson: Dance Steps

Nick Anderson/Houston Chronicle

DeSmet Man Killed In Plummer Crash

William “Sonny” Davison, 22, of DeSmet was killed and Joseph Matt, 24, of Worley injured at 1:10 p.m. today as the result of a one-vehicle accident on Lovell Valley Road/Plummer. Davison and Matt were westbound in a 1997 Jeep Cherokee when they went off the north shoulder, over-corrected and crossed the centerline.  Then, the vehicle crossed the eastbound lane, went off the south shoulder, and exited the roadway at a high rate of speed.  The vehicle went into the ditch and vaulted forward 237 feet from the roadway, 9 feet in the air, taking off the tops of two trees. The vehicle then tumbled, ejecting both Matt and Davison. Reporting authorities haven’t decided who was driving the vehicle. Alcohol was a factor in the crash/ISP. Preliminary report below.

Wild Card/Tuesday — 8.18.09

Chris @ Treasured Valley is looking for questions for a new blog feature in which he’ll ask 5 questions in 5 minutes to a newsmaker. On Friday, he’ll be sitting down with Congressman Walt Minnick. And he’s looking for your questions. You can submit them to Treasured Valley at this link here. Then, you’ll need to make remember to post a link to the answers Friday. Now, for your Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 8.18.09

Britain’s Phillips Idowu makes an attempt in the final of the Men’s Triple Jump during the World Athletics Championships in Berlin on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)

Flip-flops Reek w/Bacteria

A staple of summer could also be the most disgusting part of it. Chances are you’re carrying around a lot of germs and bacteria on your feet, depending on your choice of footwear. The New York Daily news recently tested pairs of flip-flop sandals that had been worn all over New York City. They and the feet wearing the sandals were crawling with bacteria, including staph, E. Coli and fecal matter/KREM. More here.

Question (from KREM.com): Are you worried about bacteria when wearing flip-flops in summer?

Idaho Worker Pay Now Online

Want to know how much money your child’s teacher makes? How about the police officer who pulled you over last night? Now you can. A group that bills itself as a think tank dedicated to limited government has launched a salary database, that allows anyone to look up the names and pay rates for a range of government employees. The website, set to be formally announced during a Tuesday afternoon news conference, is already online at OurIdaho.com/KTVB. More here.

Question: Obviously, public salaries are public record. But would you want to have your salary published online for all to see?

PM Headlines — 8.18.09

In this May 2007 photo by Kerry Maloney/Idaho Statesman, murderer John Delling, left, talks with his attorney. Delling was sentenced today to two life terms without possibility of parole for killing two others. See story below.

APhoto Of The Day — 8.18.09

Athletes compete during the Women’s 20k Race Walk during the World Athletics Championships in Berlin on Sunday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. The new German Ladies Football League (GLFL) begins, with tryouts for Tight Ends and Wide Receivers — JohnA.
  • 2. Maurice Chevalier would have said, “Thank god for little girls,” or “I’m in heaven, I’m in heaven …” — Idaho Dad.
  • 3. (tie) Dave, I was trying to tell you my cutline entry for today, but, but, but, but, but, but, but my stammer got in the way — Idaho Dad; and: Tired of paying astronomical Canadian rates for natural gas, Avista executives look at alternative sources/Redman.
  • HM: Aliasjax and Joker

PM Scanner Traffic — 8.18.09

  • 5:20 p.m. R/P reports a bald man in a white T-shirt is waving a gun around his residence in a Fruitland/CdA apartment behind R/P’s. R/P’s kids are afraid to play outside.
  • 4:46 p.m. Male reports that a female with black-and-pink hair asked him a question and then hit him in the face by the City Beach bathrooms. He’s had trouble w/her before.
  • 4:43 p.m. A 21YO female in 1100 block of Marie/CdA can’t move her leg today after being thrown from a horse Monday.
  • 3:57 p.m. Hayden City Hall rep reports unauthorized RV in parking lot.
  • 3:42 p.m. Woman reports 3 vicious dogs tried to attack her in 1800 block of 6th/CdA.
  • 3:38 p.m. 2 vicious dogs are loose near Hauser Lake boat launch.
  • 3:36 p.m. Agency on Aging reports possible elder abuse. More below.

DM: When Winning Is Everything

I started thinking about how many people within the sports community are enablers when it comes to boys behaving badly. Some are in the media. Others among the fan base. Owners. And yes, even coaches. However, I have to say when it’s at the college level and a school gives a coach a pass for egregious behavior, it becomes perfectly clear why many of these young men have little knowledge of socially acceptable behavior. Politicians, as sleazy as they can be at times, don’t get the pass that Rick Pitino is getting from the University of Louisville!/Dogwalk Musings. More here.

Question: Who gets a bigger pass when he misbehaves? A college athlete or coach? Or politician? Why?

Ex-UI Coach Mum On Fight Report

In these undated photos provided by the NFL, Oakland Raiders coach Tom Cable, left, and defensive assistant Randy Hanson are shown. Cable, who formerly coached the University of Idaho Vandals, declined to comment Monday about reports he punched Hanson in the jaw and caused injuries that required treatment at a hospital earlier this month. According to AOL Fanhouse, Cable hit Hanson on Aug. 5 for unknown reasons. A report filed with the Napa Police Department describes an unnamed 41-year-old assistant coach being treated at the Queen of the Valley Hospital for a jaw injury. Story here. (AP Photos/NFL)

Coeur d’Alene To Pull Lifeguards

The last day this season that lifeguards will be on duty at Coeur d’Alene City Beach is Saturday. All our lifeguards are going to go to school. Staff will be pulling in the Buoy line that evening and post no lifeguard on duty signs. Here are a few Summer 2009 Beach statistics: 1. The new Day Care Policy was a huge success we had no major issues enforcing it and made the beach a lot safer. 2. Lifeguards were involved in 8 saves and 15 assists. 3. 45 Children took swim lessons at the beach this year/Coeur d’Alene Today.

Question: Izzit it just me — or is the city pulling the City Beach lifeguards at least 2 weeks too early?

Spokane Blogs — 8.18.09

Science fiction has always been a marginal genre. In terms of art, at least. For every “2001: A Space Odyssey” and “Blade Runner” there’s a “Robot Monster” or a “Beast of Yucca Flats.” Not that I’m quibbling. I’ve spent many an afternoon watching dreck that features gorilla-bodied monsters running around the back hills of L.A. (see “Robot Monster”). And I’ve enjoyed myself. The spirit of those afternoons played out last night as I sat through Neill Blomkamp’s scintillating sci-fi offering “District 9.” There was a difference, though. Set in Johannesburg, South Africa, “District 9” is a blend of sci-fi fantasy and political commentary – if not actual insight/Dan Webster, Movies & More. More here.

Question: Do you enjoy the sci-fi movie genre?

Off To Read The ‘Real Wizard’

In this book cover image released by Gotham Books, “The Real Wizard of Oz, The Life and Times of L. Frank Baum,” by Rebecca Loncraine is shown. Review here. (AP Photo/Gotham Books)

Question: Which Oz character is your favorite? Why?

Silverwood Surprise

Idaho Dad reports that Silverwood just posted this on its Facebook page: “Something spooky is coming to Silverwood this fall.” Anyone know what that means?

NIC Honors HBO’s Don Sausser

Don Sausser was selected as the recipient of the 2009 Honorary Alumnus of the Year Award for his years of service to NIC. Sausser has believed in the mission of a community college since his sons enrolled in the 1980s. “Having attended a community college and spending more than 35 years ‘hanging’ around NIC, I can’t say enough about the community college mission,” Sausser said. “I have seen the many successes from those who may have gone a different direction without the individual care received at NIC.” Sausser served a term in the mid-1980s on the NIC Board of Trustees during President Barry Schuler’s term, and Sausser and his wife Sue have supported the NIC Foundation over the years/Press Room. More here.

DFO: Saaaaalute!

Tom Delay To Dance w/Stars

Tom DeLay says he’s got dancing in his blood and “jumped at the chance” to join the cast of “Dancing with the Stars.” “I love dancing … you’ve got to love dancing if you’re from Texas,” DeLay told Chris Cuomo on “Good Morning America.” “Conservatives can have fun too. Conservatives can let their hair down… and put on some dancing shoes.” Fans of “Dancing With the Stars” were surprised to learn on Monday that the former House Majority Leader would join the season nine cast. “The Hammer,” a nickname given for his ability to hammer legislation through Congress, will join fellow cast members Donny Osmond , Kathy Ireland, Macy Gray and others on the “Dancing With the Stars” season premiere on September 21/ABC News. More here.

Question: Will you be more/less likely to watch “Dancing with the Stars” as a result of former House Majority Leader Tom Delay being included among the dancers?

HJ: Death Of Personal Responsibility

Personal responsibility. I learned those two words as a child and continue to live by them on a daily basis. They are also two words that seem to be quickly escaping the vocabulary of most Americans. It’s not a hard concept to understand. If you do something wrong you fess up and admit it and then do everything in your power to make things right again. It’s the way I handle things in both life and work, and I really wish others in my generation felt the same way. But how can they? We are all products of the 1990s and the “self esteem” movement brought about by the leading child experts of the decade. To be quite frank, that mentality has come back to bite us in the ass/Henry Johnston, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here.

Question: Do people you know shirk personal responsiblity?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 8.18.09

Stan (left) and Steve Courchaine milked their cows for the last time in the dairy parlor on their farm along north Harvard Road Friday. The facility was absent of production after they sent their dairy cows to slaughter as part of a national program to cut milk supplies and raise prices. Their parents started the farm in 1948. Says Stan “We are in a transition.” Story here. (Dan Pelle/SR)

High Noon: Quarter For Your Thoughts

Poolman: The other day I wanted to buy a paper from a coin operated machine. The one that you put your money in and the door latch opens. So anyway, I go to put my two quarters in when I suddenly realize the paper is $2.50. WHAT - I’m not irritated about the cost; I’m actually OK with that, but who walks around with $2.50 in quarters in their pocket? I was “coined” out of the market. Newspaper people – if you are going to charge more than $1.00 for a paper - you need to have a slot for a debit card or at least a machine that can take a dollar bill. This would go under the category of “Keeping up with the times”.

Question: Do you stockpile quarters for any reason, other than to plug paper machines or parking meters?

Summertime, And Livin’ Is Easy

Jason Shopov, 8, rests Tuesday, while on top of a statue of the Ten Commandments at Sacred Heart Catholic School, in Ottawa Kan. (AP Photo/The Ottawa Herald, Elliot J. Sutherland)

AM Scanner Traffic — 8.18.09

  • 11:25 a.m. Mother (from 8:58 a.m. incident) has retrieved her 2-week-old baby from father on 5800 block of St. Anthony’s Lane/Post Falls and is walking home b/c father refuses to give her back vehicle keys.
  • 11:24 a.m. Motorist reports that a railroad crossing arm was broken when it came down on a truck after a train passed @ Pleasantview & H53.
  • 11:16 a.m. Motorist reports he almost hit a n/b extended cab pickup w/Vietnam veteran sticker @ H95 & Hayden Avenue b/c the pickup’s brake lights aren’t working.
  • 10:55 a.m. A dump truck has accidentally dropped a foot of its load on H41 @ I-90 overpass, causing a traffic hazard. Much more below.

CH: Hooked On ‘Latest Comments’

CindyH: Omigosh! Guess what I just figured out? If you click on the latest comments tab you can read… all the latest comments. When DFO referred to the latest comments feature I thought he meant just the ones that were in the little box :-) Whew! Wonder what I’ll learn when I drink my third cup of coffee?

DFO: I using this post to see if there are still some of you who are unaware that you can follow ALL the comment posts, from latest to earliest, by clicking on the “latest comments” headline in the box near the top of the right rail.