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Archive for June 2009

‘Gone With The Wind’ W.C. — 6.30.09

Today is the 181st day of 2009. There are 184 days left in the year. In 1936, the novel “Gone with the Wind” by Margaret Mitchell was published in New York. Olympic gold medal swimmer Michael Phelps is 24. Today is Meteor Day — In observance of a meteorite crash (Tunguska Comet Impact) on June 30, 1908, in central Siberia, Russia. In the news today: The Dow rose 838.08 for the quarter that ended today here. And the Wild Card is in play …

Parting Shot — 6.30.09

A local construction worker, suspended from a crane, rescues a woman who fell into the Des Moines River near the Center Street Dam in downtown Des Moines, Iowa Tuesday. A man in his 50s found floating downriver from the scene was pronounced dead. (AP Photo/The Des Moines Register, Mary Chind)

VDL: Boomerang Kids

They’re known as “boomerang kids” – young people in their late teens or early 20s (sometimes 30s, and yes, even 40s) who have already gone to college or asserted their independence but are now finding themselves back at home with their parents. Statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau show that among 18- to 24-year-olds, 56 percent of males and 43 percent of females live with one or both their parents. With the tough economy, more young people are unemployed and with little or no savings. For some, the most obvious and perhaps easiest alternative is to go back home/Virginia DeLeon, Are We There Yet. More here.

Question: Is it a good idea for adult children to move back in with their parents? Should they pay rent and contribute to household expenses? Is it OK for parents to establish rules for these 20-something adults in their households? How long should they continue living at home?

PM Headlines — 6.30.09

Spokane Sheriff Marine Deputy Thad Schultz gives personal watercraft owner Randy Brown a warning after his wife drove to close to another watercraft Tuesday on Long Lake.  The death of two teenagers in Coeur d’Alene this year raises concerns about safe use of personal watercrafts. (Colin Mulvany/SR)

APhoto Of The Day — 6.30.09

Two festival goers enjoy mud wrestling at the Music Openair Festival St.Gallen, in Switzerland Saturday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/KEYSTONE/Ennio Leanza)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. We didn’t have any mud for the photo shoot,” Hecker explained, “but what we did have was plenty of brownie mix and water” — Brent Andrews.
  • 2. Larry Spencer wrestles the impound manager to get his car back — Phaedrus.
  • 3. The bloggers at OpenCDA do what they do best — Nic.
  • HM: Escapee

PM Scanner Traffic — 6.30.09

  • 5:40 p.m. 3-4 males involved in fight by clock tower near Independence Point.
  • 5:29 p.m. Children’s Village is looking for a “girl who looks like a boy” who walked away from facility.
  • 5:01 p.m. A mother on 100 block of Miller/CdA calls police after her 12YO son told her he’d been involved in a crash w/his bike. The motorist drove off after seeing he was OK.
  • 4:53 p.m. Young juveniles are using 911 to make prank calls for drugs and paraphernalia.
  • 4:48 p.m. Woman reports that her fiance’s ex-galpal is at his Prairie Avenue residence, videotaping and trying to get into sheds. She wants an officer to tell her to “move on.”
  • 4:44 p.m. A brother accidentally stabbed another brother on 500 block of East Best/CdA. The injured man is now at KMC ER.
  • 4:30 p.m. Samuel wants to talk to a deputy re: a male going through mailboxes @ Strahorn & Honeysuckle/Hayden.
  • More below

It The News: US Forces Depart Cities

Iraqis celebrate in Basra, Iraq’s second-largest city, 550 kilometers (340 miles) southeast of Baghdad, Iraq, earlier today. U.S. troops pulled out of Iraqi cities on Tuesday in the first step toward winding down the American war effort by the end of 2011. Story here. Community Comments take on the situation here. (AP Photo/Nabil al-Jurani)

Question: Do you believe the Iraqis will be able to maintain the peace w/o U.S. troops on hand? Or do you care?

CPD Blue Gets His Men, Er, Boys

Two individuals who attempted to pass bogus $100 bills at local coffee stands Monday afternoon were caught, as a result of solid police work by CPD Blue J. Shiflett. In the first instance, a male tried to pay a Caffeine Bean barrista for a $3 coffee drink with a $100 bill (that had the words “In dog we trust” and “For motion picture only” written on it). But he walked away to a waiting SUV when he saw her look at the bill closely. Later, his partner received $97.25 in change from Higher Ground Espresso. The first barrista was able to obtain video surveillance of the vehicle from a nearby convenience store. CPD Blue Shiflett later spotted the brown-and-block Ford Explorer parked at the Fairway Apartments (1905 Appleyway). Which led him to the culprits. Who confessed their roles in the attempt to pass the counterfeit bills — and handed the officer 19 additional bills. One of the males is currently on supervised juvenile probation.

At City Beach

With summer sunshine
all about,
the body parts start
peeking out.

The Bard of Sherman Avenue

Mother Of All Butt Cracks Spotted …

… at a North Idaho BBQ by Amateur Malcontent here. (9th photo under second item, “Picture Recap of Awesome BBQ Party”). You won’t be able to get the image out of your head. You’ve been warned.

BH: Northwest Food Stinks

I love the Northwest. It’s the perfect place for me to backpack around in my sandals and talk about how great soccer is and how we need universal healthcare. There’s also plenty of Brazilian flute bands and Canadians to give the area a fully-rounded feel to it. However, when it comes to food, what does the Northwest have? Consider the following regional food designations: Northeast - Clam Chowder and Dunkin Donuts; South - Everything fried and bad for you; Midwest - Pretty much anything BBQ or involving beer; Northwest - ??? Starbucks? The rest of the West - Carl’s Jr/Brandon Hansen, Just South of North. More here.

HBO Numbers (for Monday, June 29): 7944/4602

Question: What kind of food do you think the Northwest should be known for?

Palin: I Can Outrun Obama

This May 2009 photo provided by Runner’s World magazine shows Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin in a yoga pose near her home in Wasilla, Alaska. Palin says she’d come out ahead if she went one-on-one with fellow jogger President Barack Obama in a long run, according to an interview published online Tuesday. (AP Photo/Runner’s World, Brian Adams)

Question: Do you think Sarah Palin could beat President Barack Obama in a foot race?

ISP IDs Woman Killed By Train

The Idaho State Police have identified the 45-year-old California woman killed by a Union Pacific train at 9:57 last night at the Prairie Avenue crossing near Idaho Street in Post Falls. The victim was identified as Cynthia Broderson of Grover Beach, Calif. The next of kin has been notified. Broderson was lying on the tracks when she was hit by a train traveling 33 mph in a 49 mph zone.

SC: Idaho’s Most Important People

  • 1. William Wallace
  • 2. Brigham Young
  • 3. Joseph Carey
  • 4. Luther Burbank
  • 5. J.R. Simplot
  • 6. Frederick Bradley
  • 7. Robert Smiley
  • 8. Cecil Andrus
  • 9. Sacajawea
  • 10. John Quincy Adams

See why Steve Crump/Twin Falls Times-News considers these 10 individuals to be the most important in Idaho’s history (even though some of them never set foot in the state) here.

Question: Who do you consider the most important person in Idaho history?

Washingtonian Wins For Bad Writing

“Folks say that if you listen real close at the height of the full moon, when the wind is blowin’ off Nantucket Sound from the nor’ east and the dogs are howlin’ for no earthly reason, you can hear the awful screams of the crew of the “Ellie May,” a sturdy whaler Captained by John McTavish; for it was on just such a night when the rum was flowin’ and, Davey Jones be damned, big John brought his men on deck for the first of several screaming contests” — David McKenzie of Federal Way, Wash., to win the 2009 Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest (for bad writing). Full results here.

 Question: Can you write a bad lead sentence to an imaginery blog post re: life in an Inland Northwest town?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.30.09

Brianna Webber puffs out her cheeks as she tries to get a first note out of a trumpet during an event at The Dalles Wasco County Library in The Dalles, Ore. Kids had an opportunity to experience drums, trumpets, saxophones, flutes and other instruments, and make some of their own. (AP photo/The Dalles Chronicle, Mark B. Gibson)

Question: Can you play an instrument? Which one(s)?

High Noon: No TV For Me!

Just got back from a totally relaxing week on the Oregon coast, south of Yachats, north of Heceta Head Lighthouse. I did absolutely nothing. I was totally unproductive. I vegged big time. I lay around in my pajamas and ate cereal for dinner, in the living room, watching bunnies out the front window and ever-watchful bald eagles from the back window. The eagles starved and the bunnies were totally oblivious. I didn’t watch a clock. I took naps. I didn’t follow rules. I did, however, floss and took my vitamins. I ate whatever I wanted; got up when I felt like it; dressed when I felt like it (some days, never). I became civilized occasionally and dressed appropriately and blended in with other tourists in the quaint Old Town villages of Newport, Waldport, and Florence/JeanieS, Nuts & Nonsense. More here.

Question: Describe your perfect vacaction.

In The News: Franken Wins

In this June 7, 2008, file photo, confetti falls around former comedian Al Franken after he accepted the Democratic endorsement for U.S. Senate Senate from Minnesota Saturday at the party’s state convention in Rochester, Minn. Today, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that Franken was the winner of the tight general election contest with Republican Norm Coleman, giving U.S. Senate Democrats the 60-seat majority to overcome procedural obstacles and push through their agenda. Story here. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)

  • HT: Spokalooneh

Question: Do you think it’s good for the country that U.S. Senate Demos have a 60-seat majority?

AM Scanner Traffic — 6.30.09

  • 11:56 a.m. A woman in a nightgown is walking w/b on Prairie from H95.
  • 11:21 a.m. A 67YO female has fallen more than 10 feet from a ladder in the 1000 block of East Lakeshore Drive.
  • 11:05 a.m. A 23YO male has an arrow through his finger @ Camp Swaylokin on Lutherhaven Road.
  • 10:21 a.m. 2 kids have been left in a pickup with the engine running for 45 minutes on Lakeside/CdA, b/n 4th & 5th.
  • 10:02 a.m. R/P reports from Palomino Drive residence (south of Spokane River) that he hit a deer w/his vehicle. And the deer is still alive.
  • 9:54 a.m. Marine deputy checks on report of man pushing logs out into lake @ Bennett Bay.
  • 9:49 a.m. Possible unattended death in 400 block of 15th Avenue/Post Falls.
  • 9:37 a.m. A boat has sunk but is stable @ Carlin Bay.
  • 9:36 a.m. A pitbull is running loose @ Hayden & Melrose.
  • 8:54 a.m. At least one motorist has suffered facial cuts as a result of a 4-vehicle crash on H95 just north of Prairie Avenue.
  • 8:41 a.m. Warren wants to see an officer re: dumping on his property.
  • 8:17 a.m. R/P is willing to sign a complain against a neighbor who is shooting off fireworks.

HBO Poll: Fireworks

The Consumer Product Safety Commission sets off fireworks inside of a watermelon to demonstrate the dangers of fireworks and encourage safety on the fourth of July today in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

  • Monday Poll: A plurality of 23 of 69 respondents (33%) said they owned more than 100 record albums, while 15/69 (22%) said they owned none. Full poll results here.
  • Weekend Poll: 68 of 105 respondents (65%) said “It’s their choice not mine” when asked whether the South Carolina 1st Lady should get a divorce. Full poll results here.
  • Friday Poll: 35 of 68 (51%) said Michael Jackson will be remembered as a “troubled, talented musician.” Full poll results here.

SMc: Copyright And Copy Writers

Copyright protection in the online world is going to be an exciting area of discussion in the coming years, and columnist Connie Schultz got the ball rolling recenly with her piece in the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Schultz writes about a recent panel discussion during which David Marburger brought up the idea of dramatically changing federal copyright law to protect those who produce news. David Marburger is a First Amendment lawyer who has done a good amount of work for newspapers. In her column, she quotes Marburger’s ideas on how to go after free-standing web sites and local television stations that pull newspapers stories and post them online/Steve McClure, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here.

Question: What would happen to blogs and Web sites, if copyright laws were expanded to protect those who produce news?

DC: Spokane’s Family Values

Arrested last November, Clinger was accused of speeding away from the cops with his son, Daniel Clinger, who had been involved in a knife fight at a Chattaroy lounge. I ask you: What sonny boy wouldn’t want his ol’ pop to come racing to the rescue when blades are brandished in a barroom? It brings tears to my eyes, I tell you. This isn’t a story about irresponsible behavior from a trusted public servant who should get the book thrown at him. This isn’t about breaking the law and running from the police. I’ll tell you what this is. This is Spokane’s version of family values/Doug Clark, SR. More here.

Question: Just what does a bad-apple Spokane cop or firefighter have to do to get the book thrown at him/her?

NI Man Jailed After Dog Dies In Car

Item: Man jailed after dog dies in car at Spokane Valley Mall/KXLY

More Info: More Info: A North Idaho man spent the weekend in jail on charges he killed his dog by keeping it locked up in a car with no water or ventilation. The incident happened last Friday when Charles Eschenbacher decided to take in a movie at the Spokane Valley Mall. It’s likely that Eschenbacher was very fond of his dog however when he brought his Black Lab “Crossfire” to the Valley Mall he must have underestimated just how hot his Ford Mustang would get because it didn’t take very long for the dog’s suffering to attract attention.

Question: Jailing the owner of the dog for the weekend seems over-the-top to me. I doubt that he intentionally left his dog in the car to die. This is a sad situation. But jail seems harsh. What do you think?

AM Headlines — 6.30.09

“Just about everyone who’s lived in North Idaho for a few decades has enjoyed floating the North Fork of the Coeur d’Alene River. It’s river rafting without the rapids or need for a guide. On a hot summer day you can find literally thousands of people in all manner of devices that inflate and later in the season you can enjoy the solitude of far fewer floaters. An informal survey of license plates on the cars and trucks parked alongside the Old River Road tells the tale … it’s a local favorite pastime”/Councilwoman KerriT, OnLocation North Idaho.

Question: When did you last float the North Fork of the Coeur d’Alene River?

Nampa School Defends Bible Use

Item: Nampa Classical Academy addresses use of Bible as source material in classroom/Bryan Dooley, Idaho Press Tribune

More Info: Teachers will refer to the Bible when it adds valuable context to discussions of the development of Western civilization, literature or specific historic events, Borger said. Portions of the Quran will be used similarly in a class discussing Middle East history, he said. The press release issued by the school states that the texts will not be used to establish factual truth, but as a primary source to offer greater understanding of history and culture. “Nampa Classical Academy is dedicated to using direct source materials whenever and wherever possible. Instead of relying on the opinions of historians, Nampa Classical Academy will study the writings and documents most closely associated with that historical event,” school officials wrote.

Question: Do you agree with the approach that the Nampa charter school is taking re: use of Bible and Quran in the classroom?

Drag Racers In Fatal Crash Free

Item: Drag racers given probation: Drivers in fatal crash free after six months in ‘rider’/Tom Hasslinger, Press

More Info: Two men involved in an accident that killed a 14-year-old boy and injured his mother received probation Monday — less than six months after being sentenced for the crime. Dominick F. Salois, 21, and Daniel W. Cutting, 20, were sentenced in First District Court in February for their roles in the Oct. 13, 2006, crash that killed Isaac Norris in Coeur d’Alene. Judge Fred Gibler decided both men should begin serving supervised probation rather than more time in confinement. … The decision left the families of the offenders grateful, and members of the Norris family bewildered.

Question: Is six months incarceration an adequate punishment for killing a boy while drag racing?

Stantis: Most Important News

Scott Stantis/Birmingham News

Monday Wild Card — 6.29.09

Today is the 180th day of 2009. There are 185 days left in the year. On this day in history: In 1972, the Supreme Court ruled the death penalty as it was being meted out could constitute “cruel and unusual punishment.” In 2003, actress Katharine Hepburn died in Old Saybrook, Conn., at age 96. Actor Gary Busey is 65. In the news this evening, LBGT attendees at the Pride Month reception at the White House gave President Obama a warm reception today here. And the Monday Wild Card is in play …

Parting Shot — 6.29.09

Louis-PhilippeJean, of Port-Cartier, Quebec, grimaces as he lifts a stone in the Slater King of Stone Challenge at the Fortissimus World Strength Challenge on Sunday in Montmagny, Quebec. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jacques Boissinot)

Question: What is the most weight you’ve ever lifted with your arms at one time?

How To Deal w/Insurance Companies

I recently posted that the insurance company delayed its payment for my prescription for Vancomycin. I wrote I would be lenient, not passive, patient, not pushy. The payment was made to Broadway Apothecary on Friday afternoon and I will be getting a check from them this week. The insurance covered 98% of the medicine’s cost. Leniency was easier for me than going ballistic with someone on the phone. Or ragging on the apothecary/Raymond Pert, Kellogg Bloggin‘.

DFO: I’ve had a number of problems with insurance companies over the last five years or so, including a series of problems that prompted me to switch my health insurance. Earlier this spring, I had to fight my car insurance company to get my family reimbursement for treatment stemming from that December 2007 crash in the Spokane Valley. Patience got me no where. I finally got pushy and won reimbursement.

Question: Have you had trouble dealing with insurance companies? What is the best approach in dealing with them when they drag their feet — patience or pushiness?

PM Headlines — 6.29.09

The Coeur d’Alene Summer Theater presents the Zany Mel Brooks Broadway hit, “The Producers,” Friday through Saturday, July 18, starring Eric Hadley as Max Bialystock, Jen Davis as Ulla, and Matt Wade as Leo Bloom. (J. Bart Rayniak/SR)

APhoto Of The Day — 6.29.09

Participants in the ‘Drum Parade’ drag a truck with ropes which are linked to hooks and attached to their backs, during the ‘Drum Parade’ in Madrid, on Saturday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)

Top Cutline:

  • 1. Conchita tries a new way of “hooking up” — Bayview Herb.
  • 2. I told you the fishing is much better in Spain — Sisyphus
  • 3. Esmeralda introduces the “Drum Parade” Wrinkle Removal System. Available soon at local parking lots near you!!! — Dennis.
  • HM: MikeS

PM Scanner Traffic — 6.29.09

  • 5:23 p.m. An 87YO man has fallen in his garage and possibly broken a hip in the 1400 block of Progress Drive/Hayden.
  • 5:05 p.m. R/P reports that two men are standing over a prone woman @ Wallace & 5th — and that there’s a chalk line outlining her body. Update: No on is on the scene when police arrive.
  • 4:56 p.m. Capone’s/Post Falls reports that five males are fighting in front of the pub. Update: A man with bloody knees, knuckles & a knot on his head refuses medical treatment.
  • 4:51 p.m. 3 vehicles are in the median, just north of H95 & Kathleen, after crashing. Unknown injuries.
  • 4:38 p.m. CPD Blue is looking for a early 2000s Mustang on Lakeside that might be involved in drug trafficking at City Park.
  • More below

Briefs: Firemen Put Out Tubbs Hill Fire

This afternoon Coeur d’Alene Fire Department crews responded to a small forest fire on the North side of Tubbs Hill. Crews were able to quickly extinguish the fire that appeared to be caused by an improperly discarded cigarette. Although as temperatures rise and with the fourth of July right around the corner fire crews are getting a little worried according to Fire Chief Kenny Gabriel. “The fourth is always a wildcard day for us. We always want residents and visitors to the City to celebrate, we just want them to be aware of where and how they are doing it” states Chief Gabriel/Bobby Gonder, Coeur d’Alene Fire Department. More here.

HBO Blogos — 6.29.09

I’m sad to admit that last night I caught my first fish of the season. Last year, I bought my fishing license on January 1 and started fly-fishing in waist-deep snow. I’d landed plenty of trout from rivers and creeks from Washington to Montana by this time last year. Last night was a momentous occasion. Not only did I pull in my first fish of the season, but it was the first time I had been out fishing on Spirit Lake/Taryn Hecker, Taryn A. Hecker Photography. More here.

Question: Have you caught any fish yet this season?

WH: Idaho Ed Bureaucracy Expands

Idaho taxpayers employ the equivalent of more than 27,000 full-time workers in the state’s public school system. Of those, about 55 percent are teachers - a decrease of about 5 percent of the pie since the state implemented its school funding law in 1994. On the surface, that’s not so troubling. But the problem is the burgeoning fleet of non-teacher staff flooding the ranks of school employees. Over the last 15 years, the state has added administrators and other school employees at a much faster clip than teachers or students. The oversaturation of non-teaching staff is endemic and defies legitimate trends in public school enrollment/Wayne Hoffman, Idaho Freedom Foundation. More here.

Question: Are you concerned re: the point that Wayne Hoffman makes — that the number of Idaho teachers are declining while support staff increases?

White Firemen Win High Court Appeal

Frank Ricci, left, lead plaintiff in the the “New Haven 20” firefighter reverse discrimination case speaks to the media outside of Federal Court in New Haven, Conn., today. The Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 decision that white firefighters in New Haven, Conn., were unfairly denied promotions because of their race, reversing a decision that high court nominee Sonia Sotomayor endorsed as an appeals court judge. More here. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)

Question: Does this reversal raise questions re: the judgment of U.S. Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor?

Digger: Singing Newly Hitched Blues

Digger: Hey, does anyone have a way of getting comp (or discount) tickets to go see CDA Summer Theatre’s production of “The Producers”? I looked online and they’re $40 a pop - a little spendy for Spazz and I since we just paid for our commitment ceremony. (Photos coming soon!) Any leads or assistance would be appreciated!

Joker: Digger, Unbelievable. You’ve been married/committed for less than six months and you’re already complaining about being broke. Welcome to marriage pal. You better clear that purchase with the significant other before this escalates to flow blown situation. Get NetFlix and the problem is solved!

Question: (I could add insult to injury by pointing out that I have season tickets to the Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre this summer, but I’ll simply ask): Can anyone help Digger? Or: What was your financial situation when you got hitched?

What The Hey?

MIA spotted this sign outside John Montandon’s Ace Hardware on Sherman in CdA a few minutes ago. She isn’t familiar with this product and is hoping some savvy HBO’ers might be able to enlighten us on it’s proper application.

Question: Anyone?

Stewart: No Racist Resurgence

Tony Stewart (when asked by SReporter Alison Boggs if racist fliers dropped on Coeur d’Alene lawns represents a resurgence of the Aryan Nations): I definitely think it’s something else. It’s not something to ignore, but for (those of us) who have been observing this for almost 30 years, there is no comparison. Richard Butler came here and created the compound and had all the buildings, and had both a political organization and a so-called religious organization, and had services there every Sunday. That is a major difference between what seems to be two men who have no facilities, and who … operate out of a post office box, who are trying to suggest that they’re somehow significant compared with (Butler). There is no evidence they have any followers.

Question: What do you tell out-of-state friends, family, and others when they ask about the Aryan Nations presence in the Coeur d’Alene area?

2C Etc: Idaho Samaritans Abound

Now (and I mean this as a compliment to the character of Idahoans) we more often than not take the honesty and selflessness of strangers for granted. Today, as I was out for a ride with my wife and two young children in our blue 1989 Jeep Wrangler with 170,000 miles on the odometer, our vehicle decided to die at an intersection on Ustick. The guy behind us not only got out to help me push the Jeep out of the way, he offered to give us a ride. While this has been known to happen in Florida, what happened next does not. In the next 10 minutes, as my wife phoned a friend for a ride and I troubleshooted the mechanical problem, no less than six more motorists stopped to offer assistance/Michael McAuliffe, 2C Etc. More here.

Question: Have you ever been the beneficiary of a Good Samaritan’s actions in Idaho?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.29.09

“We spotted a handsome young bull moose munching in a roadside marsh on the North Fork of the Coeur d’Alene River,” posts Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. “When he was full, he wandered up the bank into tall grass for an afternoon nap. Photos HERE. Earlier in the day, though, people enjoying a day at Lake Coeur d’Alene’s Independence Point Park got up close and personal with a wandering young moose who likely came from Blackwell Island by swimming across the Spokane River. The moose wandered across the Coeur d’Alene Resort front lawn to city park and was seen in downtown Coeur d’Alene for an hour or so.”

Noon: Don’t Get Above Your Raisin

I’ve just spent the weekend with about ten friends I grew up with and/or went to high school with in Kellogg. In terms of employment, I suppose it could be said that several of us got above our raisin’. Most of us are working in jobs that are more lucrative than what we could do in Kellogg. But none of us have forgotten where we came from and how hard how mothers and fathers worked in Kellogg and how hard we worked and work in Kellogg to make what we presently do possible. It’s humbling. We know our own hard work and that of our parents has been rewarded. It’s been possible to go on cruises or get into a mortgage or raise children who were not deprived; each in our own way, we’ve had it pretty good/Raymond Pert, Kellogg Bloggin’. More here.

Question: Do you know school mates from your Glory Days who got too big for their britches?

Pitch Man Billy Mays, 50, RIP

Pitch man Billy Mays fires a burst of bugs at a windshield while filming an infomercial for a new windshield wiper blade on June 5 in Safety Harbor, Fla. Mays, the burly, bearded television pitchman whose boisterous hawking of products made him a pop-culture icon, has died. He was 50. Tampa police said Mays was found unresponsive by his wife Sunday. A fire rescue crew pronounced him dead. AP Photo/ St. Petersburg Times, Jim Damaske)

Question: How often do you watch infomercials?

AM Scanner Traffic — 6.29.09

  • 11:27 a.m. 81YO male slipped off an exam table and hit his head in a doctor’s office in the Ironwood medical district.
  • 10:55 a.m. R/P wants to see an officer re: a sister-in-law stealing items from a shop.
  • 10:05 a.m. Julie is afraid her mother-in-law has alerted her estranged hubby that she’s at the courthouse and he’s free to clean out their residence.
  • 9:56 a.m. Sandpoint police are looking for a 9YO blond boy who is missing from the 300 block of S. 2nd.
  • 9:39 a.m. A Prairie Avenue business wants to see police re: an employee theft.
  • 9:31 a.m. R/P wants a CPD Blue to tell his mother that she can’t drive any more.
  • 8:50 a.m. A trashcan is on fire @ Kelly Ray & Government Way/Hayden.
  • 8:07 a.m. Staffer reporters a mouse problem in Room 145 of the Hedlund Building.

HBO Poll: Old Vinyls

Fred Powell sits amidst his sizeable collection in a small building in the back of his home in the Azalea District of Tyler, Texas. Powell, known as “The Record Man,” collects, sells and trades old vinyls as a hobby. Many, of course, are scrambling to see if they have old Michael Jackson vinyls among their albums gathering dust in the garage, to sell on eBay or elsewhere. Did you look to see if you had a Michael Jackson album after the King of Pop died last week? (AP Photo/Tyler Morning Telegraph,Jaime R. Carrero)

TVA: There But For God’s Grace … ?

Is it my imagination, or is it the case that when a Democrat goes astray, it’s a personal failing, and when a Republican splashes into the tabloid section, it’s a larger lesson? I just about spewed the morning coffee when I read the lede of Cal Thomas’ column excusing Mark Sanford’s fall, because “it could happen to any of us.” It could happen? A sunny day could happen, or you could run over a nail and happen to get a flat tire, but in order to fall into temptation and start an affair with someone in another country, I think one has to take some specific actions to initiate matters/Tom Von Alten/Fort Boise. More here.

Question: Do you agree/disagree with Cal Thomas’ contention that something like the affair that encircles Gov. Mark Sanford, R-SC, could happen to any of us?

Smile, You’re On Un-Candid Camera

Not only did Spencer discuss his recent scrape with the law in good humor here on HBO on Friday, but he took some of the best mug shots I’ve seen from the Kootenai County Jail. As you Merry Hucksters know, Spencer, the local government watchdog, was subject of a citizen’s arrest by a local re-po man when he entered a tow yard to get personal belongings from his Mercedes. Spencer said he had permission to do so from the highway district that he says owns the lot. The re-po man said he didn’t. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out.

IdaBlue: Minnick Joins Party Of ‘No’

Item: Minnick close to joining the party of ‘No’: Stand against Waxman-Markey energy bill troubling/IdaBlue

More Info: Minnick cites some decent reasons, but I think they’re window dressing. He’s subordinating the possible to the perfect to give himself cover for voting against it. “Because we can’t have this other, better way of doing it, I’ll just forgo doing anything helpful.” Politically expedient in Idaho, yes, but not helpful. I think Walt is subordinating the needs of the country to his political future in true Party of No fashion.

Question: On Friday, Minnick did vote against the Waxman-Markey energy bill, or the cap-and-trade bill. Did he vote correctly, in your estimation?

Madoff Gets Maximum Sentence

Item: Madoff sentenced to 150 years: Federal judge gives maximum sentence to Ponzi mastermind following his apology and victims’ request for life sentence/CNN Money.

More Info:  A federal judge sentenced Bernard Madoff, the convicted mastermind of the largest and most sweeping Ponzi scheme ever, to the maximum sentence of 150 years in federal court Monday. Judge Denny Chin of U.S. District Court in New York announced the sentence just moments after Madoff apologized to his victims. “I live in a tormented state for all the pain and suffering I created,” Madoff said. “I left a legacy of shame. It is something I will live with for the rest of my life.”

Question: Was the sentence appropriate?

NYT: Spokane Does Hoopfest Best

Item: In 3-on-3 event, all of Spokane is inbounds/John Brunch, NYTimes

More Info: And so began the 20th annual Spokane Hoopfest, the world’s largest 3-on-3 basketball tournament, and the numbers were more staggering than ever: 6,701 teams, 26,253 players and an estimated 13,000 games covering 40 city blocks and two sun-drenched days. Hardly an original idea — 3-on-3 basketball tournaments have been around for decades — Hoopfest has grown unlike any other. Just how an out-of-the-way city of 200,000 people became the 3-on-3 capital of the world says a little about Spokane’s hoop madness (it is home to the former professional star John Stockton and to the college basketball powerhouse Gonzaga University) and a lot about a little city’s penchant for pulling off big events.

Question: Did you participate in Hoopfest as a player, volunteer, or observer over the weekend? 

AM Headlines — 6.29.09

Generally, I don’t rerun a photo, but I want to make sure as many people in Spokane/North Idaho see this, as possible. Especially those who visit Independence Point, City Beach, or City Park. Don Sausser, HBO’s Eye On Sherman Avenue, snapped this photo around 10 a.m. Saturday of a young moose brushing by that stunned person in orange on its way to visit Mudgy the statue Moose at Independence Point. You can find another photo of the moose in the Independence Point parking lot here.

OTV: Celeb Deaths Attract Bad Taste

OrangeTV: One unfortunate thing I’ve learned with all the celebrity deaths in the last week is how tacky and disrespectful people can be. It surprises and saddens me when people who I thought were above such bad taste actually go there. Call me crabby or oversensitive, but can we at least wait until the bodies are cold in the ground before we start ripping on them? Sheesh.

Question: You’re not suppose to speak ill of the dead, according to an old adage. But does that apply to celebrity deaths, too?

HMO: Living By Neighbor From Hell

HMOffsuite: I once had the neighbor from hell. He built a new house next door to mine and built it wall to wall on the property lines. It was tasteless and really ugly. He used my back yard to cross to his and all the heavy equipment went right by my back door. I had the Sheriff out 3 times and the neighbor would be told to stop crossing my property, etc. When the Sheriff left, he would go back to doing what he wanted. He claimed a ‘prescriptive easement’. It wasn’t and he was trespassing. It got really confrontational and I felt I was one shot of Wild Turkey away from getting shot. So, I quietly took the high road, sold my place, bought a different one and moved before any litigation got started. Bottom line is it was the best thing I ever did.

Question: Do you have good or bad neighbors at the moment?

Heller: Icon

Joe Heller/Hellertoons

Sunday Wild Card — 6.28.09

The moose wasn’t the only wild thing running through City Park Saturday. During an evening walk through the park Saturday, I saw a domestic fight in which the male grabbed his galpal’s crutches and threw them from her before pulling a ring off her finger and throwing it away. Within moments, I saw some young jerks messing with Mudgy at Independence Point. One stood on the statue’s back. Another hung from an antler. Mebbe it’s good that we do have a lot of cops downtown to keep a lid on things. Here’s your Sunday Wild Card …

Spencer Wild Card — 6.27.09

I busted a gut laughing at the main thread of the comments section Friday, when the stars came together and old-fashion thread that featured great debates and great humor came together. Spencer deserves a H/T for his willingness to discuss his trespassing scrape that landed him in the Kootenai County Jail for a few hours — and to bat back quips from Joker and others re: his stay. (BTW, I appreciate Spencer’s return to HBO, even though he makes many of us crazy at times.) Another good debate was the one launched by Editor Gary Graham’s question re: the paper’s decision to publish stories re: the deaths of Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett on Friday’s front page. The CAVEr attack on popular Councilman Woody McEvers was good for another laugh — even prompted Mary Souza to comment that I’m a low-down character. (Usually, she and Gookin just think it.)  So, let’s dedicate this Wild Card to Spencer for launching TGIF with his e-mail to me …

Coeur d’Alene Moose On The Loose …

In the next two photos by Don Sausser (special to Huckleberries Online), you see a small moose that was on the loose @ Independence Point about 10 o’clock this morning. Check out how close the moose got to the two families emerging from parked cars to enjoy a day in the sun @ City Beach below.

@ Independence Point This A.M.

Don Sausser, HBO’s Eye On Sherman Avenue, spotted this unusual site @ Independence Point two hours ago — a moose that was wandering across the parking lot.

Poll: Sanford Scandal

Spencer Jokes About Brief Jail Stay

Joker: Inquiring minds want to know: What’s your prison nickname? Slick, the Hair, Grease lightning, the whistleblower? Watchdog? How was the grub? Did you pull a maggot out and feed it to a blackbird? Did you see any guards swiping oxycotin pills? What color jumpsuit did they hand out to you? Did you get any prison tats? Did you make a shiv? Did anybody try and stick you with a shank? Did you join a gang? Did you get to drink homemade booze that was hidden in the toilet? How was the football game against the guards?Is Captain Bryon Hadley the meanest guard to turn a screw in Shawshank?

Spencer: I thought I was funny when they asked questions to decide if I was a suicide risk. They asked if I had anything to look forward to when I got out and I said “yes, a good cup of coffee.” He decided it might be unlikely that I was going to kill myself over this charge and he sent me back to my holding cell.

Question: Elsewhere on this great thread re: Spencer’s scrape with the law, Redman appreciates Spencer’s ability to see humor in situations like this: “It’s cracks like that which make it very difficult for one to be mad and upset with you for any more than a couple of days.” Do you consider Spencer the most likeable of the CAVEr clan?

Boxer Wins Ugliest Dog Contest

Pabst competes in the World’s Ugliest Dog Contest at the Sonoma-Marin Fair on Friday in Petaluma, Calif. The toothy 4-year-old Boxer mix won top honors. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

Question: Describe the ugliest dog that you’ve ever owned?

ML: Tuning Out Jackson Death Coverage

Marianne Love: The sin lies not in the fact that the Spokesman-Review chose to run both stories on the front page. I believe that the sin lies in the nonstop coverage that will likely occur on cable news stations for the next several days. People like me have learned to find other things to do for a few days besides watch TV within hours of when these events occur. Yes, I stood transfixed to the television coverage for a while yesterday because I was shocked like the rest of the world. I believe both celebrities left a mark on their millions of fans and deserved headline coverage. Once the first regurgitations of facts and speculation began, however, I got on my bicycle and went for a ride. Full comment below. Rest of terrific thread here.

Question: In big media events, like the death of Michael Jackson, how much can you take before you tune out?

Otis G: Partying Like It Was The 1950s

Holy crap! This is the sort of thing neighbors did back in the… like… 1950’s! I hope they have a great party, and as far as I’m concerned … if anybody DOES call the cops, THEY’RE the obnoxious ones — Otis G/Otis G Experience.

Question: I hope you can read the note that Otis G’s neighbors stuck to his door. In it, the neighbors warn that they’re going to have a DJ for their daughter’s 16th birthday party from 6 to 10:30. And that everyone will be gone by midnight. They’re apologizing in advance if the party is too loud and inviting Otis G and other neighbors to drop by. Has any of your neighbors done anything recently that exhibited old-fashioned neighborliness?

Sisyphus: Busybody Neighbors Suck

Sisyphus: I had a car quit on me recently. It was not worth funneling more money into it so we parked it out front letting the new one occupy that space in the garage. We spent a couple days evaluating how best to unload it when damned if one of my neighbors didn’t call the cops saying it was abandoned. I thought that was pretty chicken shyt since no one complained to me about it first. I think I’d rather have you as a neighbor Lynne, not that I’d leave a car parked for two years, but you seem to have much more patient than the busybodies I have.

Question: Sisyphus brings up something I’ve been wondering about. As I listen to Scanner Traffic, I’m struck by the number of times per day that people sick the cops on others, neighbors on neighbors and motorists on other motorists, via cell phones. Have we become a nation of busybodies?

GS: Send Teachers To Buddhist Camps

Item: Mead educators report to boot camp: Former student offers a taste of Marine life/SR

Gregor Samsa: Wow. Rather than glorify a program probably intended to amp teachers up to be better recruiters in high schools for the military, to convince kids that their future interests are best served as being cannon fodder for the loathsome and evil Military-Industrial Complex, why don’t we send teachers to buddhist camps and meditation education programs where they can open their closed minds to a world without gun and grenade slinging hate bots, a world without the need to dominate others at the point of a gun. Sorry. Not impressed.

Question: Do you see anything wrong with local educators participating in boot camp to get a taste of Marine life?

Fishwife: Too Many CPD Blue Downtown

Fishwife: The black gloved, omnipresent CDA cops won’t win the incumbents any votes. I’ve never seen a town so saturated with cops. They are everywhere and need lessons in social diplomacy. A legion of blues show up for every city park encounter I’ve witnessed. They are not very polite and I feel unsafe around them.

Joker: I’d rather have more cops around then the legion of punks down at Independence Point who congregate, fight, and generally make a nuisance out of themselves. Ever been downtown after 10 p.m. on a weekend? Bunch of loudmouth drunks.Yes cops can be jerks. No doubt, but feeling unsafe? Come on. That’s just silly

Question: Would you rather have too many or too few Coeur d’Alene police officers downtown after 10 p.m. on weekends?

M&M: 10 Best Pictures? How About 1?

I’m going to take a second from our Colombian adventure and make a movie-oriented note: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has apparently found a new way of promoting itself - or, more exactly, the art of cinema that it tries to represent. It’s going to allow 10 Best Picture nominees to be named for its 2010 ceremonies. OK, I’m not sure about anyone else, but I can’t remember a year in which I thought that there were 10 films worth naming as Best Picture. Some years I’d have been hard pressed to name five. Ah, well, now maybe Steven Seagal will have a chance. Kidding, I’m kidding/Dan Webster, Movies & More.

Question: Do you think the best movie of the year generally wins the Oscar for Best Picture? Or are there other factors in play — like political correctness?

Pied Piper Wild Card — 6.26.09

Today is the 177th day of 2009. There are 188 days left in the year. On this day in history: In 1945, the charter of the United Nations was signed by 50 countries in San Francisco. New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter is 35. Germany is celebrating Rat Catcher’s Day in honor of the Pied Piper getting rid of rats in Hamelin on this day in 1284. In the news today, the House passed climate change legislation on a 219-212 vote here. And the TGIF Wild Card is in play …

Parting Shot — 6.26.09

This image provided by NASA Wednesday shows Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Koichi Wakata, Expedition 20 flight engineer, watching a water bubble float freely between him and the camera, showing his image refracted, in the Harmony node of the International Space Station earlier this month. (AP Photo/NASA)

CH: Are You Marine Material?

Mead High School teacher Kathy Carman reached a milestone in February. At 62, she completed Marine Corps basic training. Well, a portion of it anyway. In her high school classroom, she proudly displayed a badge that read: “Honorary Marine Recruit: This is to certify that the bearer has successfully completed the first two minutes of the twelve weeks of Marine Corps boot camp at Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego.” Carman and her longtime classroom assistant, Jeanine Munter, spent four days in San Diego as participants in the Marine Corps Educators Workshop. The program is designed to give teachers a firsthand look at the making of a Marine/Cindy Hval, SR Voices. More here.

Question: How well do you think you’d do at Marine boot camp?

PM Headlines — 6.26.09

 At the Taryn A. Hecker Photography blog, Taryn has posted her “Best Of Camo” from the Spirit Lake Lawnmower Drag Races over the weekend. She dubbed the couple above as winners of the “Best Traditional His & Hers Camo.” You can see all the camo winners here.

Question: Which camo winners in Taryn’s various categories would you dub as grand champion?

APhoto Of The Day — 6.26.09

iPhone fans Mitsuru Ando, left, Ryota Musha, center, and Yoshiki Ono share a light moment while waiting outside a Softbank office before the ceremonial event for the first day sales of iPhone 3G S in Tokyo, Japan, earlier today. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Junji Kurokawa)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Ah-so, made in China — Charlie.
  • 2. Nerds…??? naaaaah! — Pecky.
  • 3. “We’re idiots. Yeah, there’s an app for that!” — Bayview Bob.
  • HM: JohnA

PM Scanner Traffic — 6.26.09

  • 5: 27 p.m. A trailer behind a w/b vehicle has flipped on its side on I-90 @ M/P 26, approaching 4th of July Pass.
  • 5:23 p.m. A large group of people have used cones to block an off-street of Dakota Avenue/Hayden and play street basketball.
  • 5:12 p.m. A trailer came loose from its semi cab and now is partly blocking the i/s of H53 & Prairie.
  • 4:51 p.m. Mother wants to see an officer re: her 13YO daughter having sex w/a 19YO male.
  • 4:12 p.m. A driver is bleeding and trying to get out of a Ford Bronco that rolled over @ Garwood & Hooker Hill roads/Garwood. The driver and a passerby is unable to locate the passenger that had been in the car.
  • Much more below

HBlogos: Lost In Translation

I took the kids to last night’s Chamber of Commerce meeting at La Sierra, Spirit Lake’s lone Mexican restaurant. Bailey had been craving a bean burrito forever and was excited that I was finally taking him there to get one. I hadn’t realized that the waiter had brought Bailey a beef burrito instead of a bean burrito until halfway through the meal when Bailey asked me what they speak in Mexico. Spanish, I said. “Mom, does bean mean beef in Spanish?”/Taryn Hecker, Taryn A. Hecker Photography.

Question: Did you ever get “beef” for “beans” as a result of a language barrier?

Gone But Memory Lingers On

Mike Trikilis, founder of Pro Arts in Medina, the company that produced the iconic Farrah Fawcett poster, holds an original poster in his apartment on Thursday in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. (AP Photo/Akron Beacon Journal, Mike Cardew)

Question: Which posters of movie stars or singers did you have in your room when you were growing up?

Trib Jeers Henderson Re: H95 Snafu

JEERS — to Senate Majority Leader Bart Davis, R-Idaho Falls, and Rep. Frank Henderson, R-Post Falls. They didn’t create an emerging bottleneck on U.S. Highway 95 north of Coeur d’Alene. But between them, these two legislators didn’t help matters much either. New Lewiston Tribune opinionator Marty Trillhaase explains why Henderson received a jeer here.

Question: Do you have a cheer or a jeer to give anyone for something s/he did this recently?

2nd Tea Party Planned For Pullman

Item: Second TEA Party planned for Pullman: Organizers hope event encourages attendees to put message into action/Hillary Hamm, Moscow-Pullman Daily News


More Info: Jeff Williams isn’t sure everyone got the message during the area’s first Taxed Enough Already parties in April. Williams said the roughly 500 people who participated in the events in Moscow and Pullman understand the need for accountability in government, fiscal responsibility and standing strong by the Constitution. Now he wants to spread the word even more and start a revolution among people willing to challenge their elected officials. A second TEA Party Protest/Freedom Rally will take place in Pine Street Plaza in downtown Pullman at 4 p.m. Saturday.

Question: Have you attended any of the protest tea parties in the Inland Northwest?

Should Large People Pay More To Fly?

Item: Should large people pay more to fly/Andrea James, Aerospace News, Seattle P-I

More Info: “You pay for checking your baggage, for snacks and for extra leg room,” writes CNN’s Stephanie Chen. “Word is one airline has even toyed with charging you to use the toilet. So it makes perfect sense to some fliers that heavier passengers should pay for spilling over into the next seat.” If eliminating plastic spoons can reduce weight enough to save an airline money, imagine how much they’d save if we all lost 5 pounds.

Question: What do you think?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.26.09

Licensed Veterinary Technician Marilyn Omlor helps a deer fawn drink goat milk replacer from a lamb bar at Ponti Veterinary Clinic Tuesday. The licensed Wildlife Reabilitator is caring for the animals with “most minimum human contact” until they can be released on private property. Wildlife agencies urge people to leave young animals alone, because they are usually not orphaned. Becky Kramer’s SR story here. (J. Bart Rayniak/SR)

High Noon: Page 1 For Celeb Deaths?

Editor Gary Graham: I’ve received one phone call and one email thus far this morning from readers who objected to the coverage of Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett on the front page. Neither reader considers those deaths as real ‘news’ or worthy of front page coverage. I’d be interested in hearing what other readers think. Meghann’s right, too. The front-page treatment in various papers across the country is fascinating.

Question: Do you think the deaths of Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett Thursday warranted front-page coverage in the Spokesman-Review this morning?

AM Scanner Traffic — 6.26.09

  • 11:37 a.m. A fire boat is responding to Luther Haven to transport a 24YO female who lost consciousness in main dining area @ Camp (Fire USA) Sweyolaken momentarily. It’ll use the nearby Camp Lutherhaven dock.
  • 11:04 a.m. A child has pulled the fire alarm @ the St. Vinny’s emergency shelter.
  • 10:54 a.m. A resident on Greensferry/Post Falls is tired of his neighbor driving on his property.
  • 10:31 a.m. At Riverbend Starbucks, a CPD Blue has spotted a woman driving a white Toyota van from a Santa Barbara, Calif., auto dealer, without plates, and is “curious why it’s in Coeur d’Alene.” 
  • 10:11 a.m. David said his son spotted two males trying to steal his lawnmower on O’Connell Avenue/Rathdrum.
  • 8:11 a.m. A 58YO woman has attempted suicide by taking an overdose of prescription drugs with alcohol on 4th, south of Neider.
  • 8:01 a.m. CPD Blues are trying to catch a man @ I-90 & H95 (old Rosauer’s building parking lot) who’s approaching stopped motorists w/a red book in his hand.

They’re Attacking Woody, Too?

I didn’t realize until Joker posted a comment this morning that Councilman Woody McEvers is in the cross-hairs of “This week Gary Ingram depicted Woody McEvers as a buffoon and dangerous on the OpenCDA site. Dan Gookin is one of the main operators of that site. He never deleted the comment or asked Gary to be civil. Instead Gary’s comment was “frontpaged” and more discussion about it took place. Where’s the outrage Mr. Gookin over a public slam that atttacks Mr. McEver’s character?” In checking out Gookin’s site a few moments ago, I found four posts aimed solely or partly at Woody within the last week. Which means Gookin, Souza, McCrory and their sockpuppets are trying to soften up the popular incumbent should he seek re-election this year. Or discourage him from running again. Either way, Gookin & Co. don’t live by the creed of civility that they espouse in letters to the editor and columns in their house organ, the Coeur d’Alene Press. Then, I’m bringing more attention to this matter than it deserves. Rightfully did Phaedrus observe re: “That insignificant little ghost town in cyberspace is nothing more than a circle-jerk of character-besmirching and words-in mouth-placing conducted by the bitter few against those who have vanquished them.”

Question: Do you want Councilman Woody McEvers to seek re-election?

Laid Off Loser Pulls Plug On Blog

No, this is not about “American Pie” or the real-life events referenced in the song. Catchy tune, though. Parts, anyway. Nor is it about Michael Jackson. His death is sad in the way all deaths are sad, but he never really meant anything to me. Call me a liar, contrarian, whatever, but I never really liked his music. Not even Thriller, which even some hipster-turd music snobs claim, either ironically or genuinely, is genius, but I don’t see it. Rick James is better than Michael Jackson and Rick James isn’t even that good. I’ll remember Michael Jackson as a sad and strange tale of American celebrity, but not much else. No, this is the death of Laid Off Loser/Laid Off Loser. More here. H/T: Treasured Valley.

Question: Have you either quit or thought about quitting a blog?

Singer Michael Jackson, 50, RIP

Newspaper front pages banner the death of Michael Jackson, in New York Friday. World reaction, and: Autopsy conducted. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

  • Thursday HBO Poll Result: 57 of 71 respondents (80%) said Congressman Walt Minnick does a better job than Gov. Butch Otter in representing his constituents here.
  • Secondary Poll: 24 of 84 (29%) tied in picking two Michael Jackson songs as favorites — “Billie Jean” and “Thriller” here.

Congress Wants More $$$ For Offices

But the thing is, increasing the office budget — for inflation or any reason — sends a terrible message. Not only is it out of step with the private sector. It’s even out of step with the rest of the public sector. Just ask Boise City Hall or the state Department of Health and Welfare, or any other agency that has been forced to cut staff jobs. The Idaho congressional offices all report brisk or increased casework — thanks to the recession, and the cumbersome task of helping agencies and grant applicants sort through the $787 billion economic stimulus law. But I’m just not buying the notion that the staffs really need more money to handle this caseload/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Should congressmen be expanding their offices during a recession when the private sector and even other public entities are cutting back?

Gookin Lashes Back @ MikeK

On the Coeur d’Alene Press letters to the editor section today, Dan Gookin of lashes back on Councilman Mike Kennedy for an exchange they had at the June 16 City Council meeting. Kennedy accused Gookin of grandstanding and accused him of wanting condominiums or other development on the proposed site of the Education Corridor. Writes Gookin: ”If Mr. Kennedy wishes to besmirch my character in a public meeting, and place words in my mouth during public testimony, I would at minimum appreciate it if he would do his research”/Dan Gookin, Coeur d’Alene Press. Full letter here.

Question: I’m amused that Gookin & Co. always act offended when a public official has had his fill of their attacks and tactics and calls them out at a meeting. However, if Gookin’s right, do you think MikeK should ap-hollow-gize?

AM Headlines — 6.26.09

“Over 100 motorcycles paraded through Coeur d’Alene Thursday morning as members of Cal-Tex Riders took to the streets,” posts Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. “The organization of retired law enforcement officers is in North Idaho for a convention. John Skeete of California drives a gorgeous orange Goldwing trike in the procession.”

Question: Can anyone explain to me why 100 ex-cops were parading their motorcycles downtown yesterday morning. It was sorta cool watching them go past the SR building. But what was the purpose of the exercise?

BillH: Just Love Them

BillH (in response to question: What is the best things you can do to help a friend of loved one fight through cancer and cancer treatments?): My wife is partway through radiation treatment now, and if we asked her I think she would tell you that encouragement to “stay positive” is probably pretty low on the list. Be honest. Care. Really talk and really listen. Cancer is scary, personal, and can be very lonely. It is also a rollercoaster of emotions, so have some grace. And for every story you want to tell about a friend or a family member who “won the battle”, just know that she’s heard two other stories of women who haven’t. She’s in the hospital every day and she has eyes to see what this disease can mean. Just love her.

Question: Why do people say dumb things to others who are suffering physically or grieving?

Daye Only Zag Taken In Draft

Item: Pistons grab Daye at No. 15: Sophomore only Zag picked in draft/Jim Meehan, SR

More Info: No other Bulldogs were selected, a surprising development considering forward Josh Heytvelt was projected as second-rounder in numerous mock drafts and a first-rounder in at least one. Ex-Zags Jeremy Pargo and Micah Downs also didn’t hear their names called.

Question: Why do you think Daye was the only Gonzaga Bulldog taken in the NBA draft Thursday?

Spencer Reacts To Trespass Charge

Re: Larry Spencer faces trespass charge/Huckleberries Online

I was authorized to enter the property in question, having asked the road supervisor at Lakes Highway District if I was within legal rights to go anywhere I wished on property owned by the Highway district, even if someone had erected a fence and posted it with no trespassing signs. The small impound yard is located right in the center of an un-built highway district right of way dedicated to the Lakes Highway District by deed a few years ago. This has been confirmed by examination of the map Book J page 26 in the recorders office, showing the plat of the “Little Tree” subdivision. When I went to the yard, I took a copy of the map from the assessors office, showing that the Lakes Highway property continued past the apparent end of the road (where the “bullpen” is located) and continues another thousand feet into the field beyond the small fenced yard/Larry Spencer. Full e-mail here.

Question: Do you think this story is front-page worthy for Huckleberries Online?

Anderson: ‘Family Values’ Plank

Nick Anderson/Houston Chronicle

Custer’s Last Stand W.C. — 6.25.09

Today is the 176th day of 2009. There are 189 days left in the year. On this day in history: In 1876, Lt. Col. George A. Custer and his 7th Cavalry were wiped out by Sioux and Cheyenne Indians in the Battle of the Little Bighorn in Montana. In 1950, war broke out in Korea as forces from the communist North invaded the South. Singer Carly Simon is 64. Today is LEON Day - LEON is NOEL spelled backwards. (It is now six months until Christmas.) In the news politicians are calling for disgraced South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford to resign here. And another Wild Card is in play …

PS: Daye Only Zag Picked In NBA Draft

NBA commissioner David Stern, left, poses with Austin Daye, who was picked by the Detroit Pistons, during the first round of the NBA basketball draft in New York, this afternoon. Detroit picked Gonzaga’s Daye with the No. 15 selection. Daye becomes the fourth Zag to be picked in the first round. He was the only Zag taken in the first round this year. Jim Meehan’s SR story. ESPN’s NBA draft link here. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Poll: Michael Jackson’s Best Song?

Larry Spencer Faces Trespass Charge

Conservative activist Larry Spencer of 1589 Southside Road, Cocalalla, was subject of a citizen arrest about 8 p.m. Wednesday when he tried to reclaim personal belongings from his repossessed vehicle. Spencer, 36, who identified himself as a “political consultant,” claimed he had been given permission to enter the locked and fenced tow yard of Auto Tracker’s Recovery @ 250 W. Bentz Road in the Rathdrum area, according to a sheriff’s report. But Matthew A. Mayo of Auto Tracker’s Recovery told deputies that Spencer had been told he would need to pay $45 in order to gain access to his vehicle. Spencer, who crawled under the tow yard fence to get his belongings, reportedly said he didn’t need to pay the fee because the property belonged to the Lakeside Highway District. Two large signs on the gate to the tow yard read: “No Trespassing, Violators Will Be Prosecuted.” Mayo and tow yard employee Bryce Atteberry confronted Spencer at his pickup when he emerged from the woods with his belongings. Mayo made the citizen’s arrest after he told deputies: “I’m tired of dealing with this guy.” Then, deputies took Spencer into custody.

PM Headlines — 6.25.09

Protestors march in front of Spokane, Wash. City Hall Thursday to raise awareness over their concerns for an independent police ombudsman. (Christopher Anderson/SR)

APhoto Of The Day — 6.25.09

A stingray leaps out of the water as it is hunted by a killer whale, whose fin can be seen below the ray, just off St. Heliers beach in Auckland, New Zealand, Wednesday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/New Zealand Herald Photograph, Brett Phibbs)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. “ … Free Willy my ..@$$ I can fly YOU can’t !! ” — Pecky.
  • 2.  Ray: “You’re a whale of a fish, please don’t eat me.” Whale: “I won’t do it on porpoise” — JohnA.
  • 3. (tie) Go ahead Willy, you flap your gums, I’ll flap my wings! — Charlie; and:

    So this is how Willy plays Frisbee!!!!! Cool! — Dennis.

PM Scanner Traffic — 6.25.09

  • 5:37 p.m. Biker is trying to help a badly beaten man to the e/b Huetter rest stop after finding him on the Centennial Trail w/a broken ankle and battered face. Individual involved in assault isn’t around.
  • 4:58 p.m. R/P reports road rage incident involving drivers of a rusty Dodge and a gold passenger car that were trying ram each other @ 95 & Hanley.
  • 4:33 p.m. Patrol officers are trying to locate a 42YO woman in a vehicle w/Minnesota plates who reported from the Huetter rest stop that the voices in her head were telling her to overdose on insulin. Update (4:56 p.m.): Woman pulled over @ M/P 24 (east of Wolf Lodge Creek).
  • 4:20 p.m. Kids pulled a fire alarm @ Mormon Church on Meyer Road/Rathdrum.
  • Much more below

Times: Michael Jackson Dead @ 50

In this Aug. 29, 1993, file photo, pop singer Michael Jackson performs during his “Dangerous” concert in National Stadium, Singapore. The Los Angeles Times is reporting that a heart attack has claimed Jackson at age 50. Story here. (AP Photo/C.F. Tham, file)

  • H/T: Katrina

Question: How will Michael Jackson be remembered?

Army Boots Ex-Statesman Reporter

Item: Former Statesman Reporter Barred From Army Unit For Not Reporting Good News: Barring an embedded reporter for NOT reporting so-called “good news” gets a poor response from military media specialists/Jill Kuraitis, New West.

More Info: “Officials said Stripes reporter Heath Druzin, who covered operations of the division’s 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team in February and March, would not be permitted to rejoin the unit for another reporting tour because, among other things, he wrote in a March 8 story that many Iraqi residents of Mosul would like the American soldiers to leave and hand over security tasks to Iraqi forces,” says the story.

Question: What do you think?

A Pigeon At The Airport

How cheerful is that little pigeon,
although his brain is but a smidgeon;
to fly, he needs not TSA —
he’s luckier than I today.

The Bard of Sherman Avenue

S.C. 1st Lady Stands By Man For Now

South Carolina’s first lady Jenny Sanford stands in front of the family home as she talks to South Carolina public safety officers that are posted in the driveway Thursday on Sullivan’s Island, S.C. The family is staying at the beach front home after the Governor admitted to having an affair with a woman from Argentina. (AP Photo/Mic Smith)

Question: How quickly would your wife tell you to pack your bags, if you pulled what Gov. Mark Sanford did? Why do political wives usually pull a Tammy Wynette when their husbands are caught in affairs?

MPDN: Let State Decide Smoking Ban

The Moscow City Council soon will take up discussion on the proposed ban on smoking in bars. We hope members will be deliberate in their discussions and not act in the same hasty manner in which the proposal appears to have been made. That is not to say we are opposed to such a ban. We believe nonsmokers have the right to be in a bar without having to breathe secondhand smoke. We feel, however, that it is a function of the state to enact such a ban as it did a few years ago in banning smoking in public places, including restaurants. The state, for whatever reason, left it up to the various municipalities to create their own statutes if they wanted stricter nonsmoking laws/Murf Racquet, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here.

Question: Would you prefer that the Idaho Legislature decide whether to institute a smoking ban in bars statewide? Or leave it up to individual communities, like Moscow?

Minnick Didn’t Pull A Switchblade

Item: Minnick makes point about knives: Idaho congressman demonstrates spring-assisted knife to members of House panel in bid to derail Customs rule/Bill Spence, Lewiston Tribune

More Info: Rumors that Idaho Congressman Walt Minnick pulled a switchblade on the House Rules Committee may be slightly exaggerated. But he did pull a knife. Minnick, together with Rep. Robert Latta, R-Ohio, met with the rules committee late Tuesday, seeking approval to attach an amendment to an appropriations bill. The amendment would have blocked a U.S. Customs effort to change a 50-year-old definition and reclassify certain spring-assisted knives as illegal switchblades.

Question: What do you think of Congressman Walt Minnick pulling a knife to make a point before the House Rules Committee?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.25.09

Spokane Police Officer Dave Grenon strides across a stream of leaking oil from a Loomis armored car after the driver ran a red light and struck a Toyota Land Cruiser at the corner of 25th and Grand Ave Wednesday in Spokane, Wash. A passenger in the armored vehicle received injuries, but none in the SUV. (Dan Pelle/SR)

High Noon: Costlier To Be A Woman

Finding suitable swimwear is not only more difficult for women, it’s more expensive. My suit cost three times as much as my husband’s and contains less fabric. How is that equitable? Speaking of skimpy fabric, women also have to pay more for undergarments. A three-pack of Hanes will set my husband back less than $10. My favorite Victoria’s Secret undies – three for $30. Does this seem fair? And please do not write to me about the savings that can be achieved by buying underwear in bulk at discount stores. A woman’s got to have some kind of standards. And even if I did buy my panties by the ton, men’s briefs would still be cheaper/Cindy Hval, SR Voices. More here.

Question: What else do women pay more for? Is there anything men pay more for?

In The News: College Transfers

Rebecca Gottlieb holds up a shirt from her new school while wearing one from her old school at her family home on Bainbridge Island, Wash. Gottlieb’s family paid $50,000 last year so she could attend Tufts University 2,500 miles away in Medford, Mass. So the 19-year-old made the choice many college students are contemplating right now, she gave up her dream of earning a degree from a prestigious private university and is moving back home to finish her undergraduate education at Western Washington University, where tuition, housing, books and fees will total about $15,000 next year. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Question: My family pieced together scholarships, student loans, and parent loans to enable my two kids to attend private schools in the Portland, Ore., area. I’ve paid off the loans for my son’s education at Linfield College (annual cost about $22,500 at the time). I’m still paying on the one for my daughter to attend University of Portland (annual cost $33,000). I don’t know if we could pull it off on a single income today. Have your kids had to settle for a second choice re: college as a result of today’s tuition and related costs?

AM Scanner Traffic — 6.25.09

8:10 a.m. A major network problem with the SR’s telephone carrier XO Communications took down the phone line to our Coeur d’Alene office as well as many other business customers including the Nickels Worth. XO is working on the problem and has not given us an estimated repair time. Customers calling the SR’s Coeur d’Alene office at 208-765-7100 or any of the other direct-dial numbers  have not been able to complete the calls. Update (11:58 a.m.): XO fixes line problems.

  • 11:36 a.m. A pregnant woman can’t follow emergency CPR instructions on an unconscious male @ Kaleigh Court & Spokane/CdA.
  • 11:30 a.m. R/P reports that he sees smoke on a mountain side above Spirit Lake.
  • 11:10 a.m. A parade of about 100 ex-cop motorcyclists just went past the SR building on Northwest Boulevard, headed for Sherman Avenue. CPD Blue said moments ago that some of the riders are having trouble driving at such a low speed.
  • 10:50 a.m. A man is suffering swelling lips and gums as a result of an allergic reaction after being stung by several wasps @ O’Connell & Atlas.
  • 10:20 a.m. Shoshone County is reporting a motorcycle crash on w/b I-90 @ M/P 34. Motorcyclist w/o helmet blew a tire. But he’s walking around. Update (10:31 a.m.): Rider suffered only a road rash.
  • 9:22 a.m. A deputy reports that a distraught female is walking along Meyer Road, a half mile south of Quail Ridge/Rathdrum area.

DM: Religious Right House Empty

Now, with Rev Bryan Fischer’s recent exit, no one is in charge. Two decades is a long time to have been associated with such a movement. It’s also long enough to make an accurate analysis: the house that the Religious Right built is empty. Since I‘ve held a unique position from the start, maybe it’s my job to turn out the lights, at the end. In its place must be a clear-headed, well-articulated out-reach by interested parties who refuse to demonize their opponents – on both sides. We need to re-establish a loving culture of civility, realizing that the public opinion of this more-caring-culture will mold a fairer public policy for Idaho and the Nation. That’s how I will be helping the families of Idaho, beginning with my own/Dennis Mansfield. More here.

  • Thursday Morning Coffee/Treasured Valley
  • Breaking up California/Clayton Cramer
  • Gov. Sanford: IdaBlue, Fort Boise, and Political Game
  • Idaho delegation split on congressional spending increases/Kevin Richert
  • Boomers feel parents’ Great Depression pain/2C Etc.

    Question: What do you think of Dennis Mansfield’s comment re: the Religious Right: “We need to re-establish a loving culture of civility, realizing that the public opinion of this more-caring-culture will mold a fairer public policy for Idaho and the Nation.”

    IPT: Know Bike Rules Of The Road

    Cyclists must come to a complete stop at red traffic lights. If there is no traffic coming the other way, they can proceed while the light is still red. Cyclists don’t have to come to a complete stop at stop signs, as long as there is no other traffic coming the other way/Idaho Press Tribune. More rules of the road here.

    Question: How well do you know the rules of the road for bicycles?

    HBO Poll: Otter Or Minnick?

    Court: School Strip Search Illegal

    This April 21 file photo shows Savana Redding standing outside the Supreme Court in Washington, after the court heard the case of Redding who was strip searched when she was 13 years old by school officials looking for prescription-strength ibuprofen pills . The court ruled today that the school’s strip search was illegal. In an 8-1 ruling, the justices said school officials violated the law with their search of Redding in the rural eastern Arizona town of Safford. Story here. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, file)

    Question: Can you think of any situation in which a strip search by school officials would be justified?

    Actress Farrah Fawcett, 62, RIP

    Farrah Fawcett, Kate Jackson, and Jaclyn Smith, left to right, former stars of the television series “Charlie’s Angels,’ pay tribute to producer Aaron Spelling during the 58th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards in August 2006, at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. Fawcett died tody at a hospital in Los Angeles. She was 62. Story here.

    Question: I learned last night that a former brother-in-law also has died of cancer at about the same age as Farrah Fawcett-Majors. What is the best things you can do to help a friend of loved one fight through cancer and cancer treatments?

    Minnick Tops Otter In Popularity

    Here are the numbers: Crapo, 59 percent favorable, 17 percent unfavorable; Risch, 49 percent favorable, 19 percent unfavorable; Minnick, 47 percent favorable, 20 percent unfavorable; Simpson, 56 percent favorable, 8 percent unfavorable. For Otter, the comparable figures were 47 percent favorable, 35 percent unfavorable/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

    Question: How can you explain the fact that Repub Otter’s unfavorable numbers are almost twice as much as freshman Demo congressman Minnick’s? Also: Otter is hinting at a run for re-election. How vulnerable will he be in a Repub primary?

    Paralyzed Ironman Gets His Medal

    A local man, who was taken off the Ironman course during the swimming competition, completed the course anyway and got a special gift in honor of his accomplishment. Casey Kammel was the only physically challenged participant in the competition. He is paralyzed on his right side, but decided to do the race anyway. Casey started out like every other athlete in the water on Sunday morning, but because of his disability and the rough conditions on Lake Coeur d’Alene, Casey was only able to finish half of the swim portion of the race, disqualifying him completely from Ironman. However, Casey pushed on, biking 112 miles and running 26 miles on his own. Casey did not get a medal, but on Monday, Hugo Ferlito heard about Casey’s story and stopped by his house to give Casey his Ironman finisher’s medal/KXLY. More here. Video here.

    DFO: There were many inspirational stories from Ironman Coeur d’Alene this year. But I can’t think of any that top this one. Can you?

    Zehm Action Stuns Spokane Police

    It’s been a tough week for the Spokane Police Department after one of their most respected officers was indicted by a grand jury for using excessive force against Otto Zehm three years ago. Rank and file officers are reeling from the indictment of one of their own by the federal grand jury and just like any football team that has a good offense but can’t seem to win a game the department has had their confidence shaken. “He’s the poster child of policing .if you want a picture of a professional officer it’s Karl,” Spokane Police Department Chaplain Ron Alter said. Karl Thompson is so respected by his fellow officers that when Chief Roger Bragdon resigned the rank and file circulated a petition asking that Thompson, a patrolman, be elevated to take his place/KXLY. More here.

    Question: The Zehm case, of course, has stirred the public like few others. Does your view of this case change after reading the comments above re: Karl Thompson’s sterling police record?

    AM Headlines — 6.25.09

    The Am-brew-lance was handy in case viewers ran out of beer at the annual Spirit Lake Lawnmower Drag Races last weekend, according to Taryn Hecker. There was even an IV set up on board in case an oral booze fix wouldn’t cure what aled ya. You can see more photos of the drag races and teehee-shirts there at Taryn’s photography blog here.

    BA: Medical Pot For Alcoholism, Too

    I can’t believe this is happening. It’s like a dream come true. This stone is rolling and there’s no stopping it. Finally. The states lagging behind are going to look silly, on this one. Even cops agree: A recent issue of POLICE magazine says 45 percent of survey respondents supported medical marijuana. More than 20 percent supported full legalization. We’ve come a long way, baby, in just a few years. I think Washington’s law could be interpreted as allowing alcoholics access for medical purposes — as treatment for alcoholism, a chronic, wasting disease affecting appetite among other things. But depression has been ruled out, oddly.

    Question: Should states like Washington that allow the use of medical marijuana also allow it to be prescribed for alcoholism and depression?

    Katrina: Do We Jettison Standards?

    Do ideals rise and fall on the faithfulness (or faithlessness) of those who claim to value them, rather than their own intrinsic merit? If that is the case, who then can stand in the breach and urge us to higher and better things, whatever they may be? The question occurs to me whenever either political party makes ideological hay out of the failings of members of the opposition. What is worse? To hold up a standard and fail utterly to meet it, or to dispense with standards altogether? Full post below.

    Question: Do we abandon lofty ideals b/c many fail in their attempt to live up to them?

    Marmie: No Bears, Snakes, Spiders

    Marmitetoasty: I saw a real bear whilst in Maine a few summers back, it walked out the woods right infront of the car we was in…… it was scary and wonderful all at the same time…….. and whilst in the garden of a little woodland cottage that me matie was doing up, I noticed the over grown garden grass had been flattened in place, upon asking me matie why the grass was flat he said…. oh, thats there the bears came through this morning…… jebus… it was said, all mater of fact LOL….. every time I then walked in the doodle woods I repeated in me head ‘no bears, snakes or spiders, no bears, snakes or spiders’ lol cos of course we dont have anything dangerous over here.

    Question: Have you ever encountered anything dangerous in Jolly Old England or one of its colonies?

    Ramirez: All Adds Up To The Same

    Michael Ramirez/Investor’s Business Daily

    Hump Day Wild Card — 6.24.09

    Today is the 175th day of 2009. There are 190 days left in the year. On this day in history: In 1509, 500 years ago, Henry VIII was crowned king of England. Rock musician Jeff Beck is 65. Today is UFO day (in honor of the first UFO sighting on this day in 1947 near Washington’s Cascade Mountains). In the news this afternoon, the US soccer team stunned top-ranked Spain today 2-0 to advance to the finals of the Confederations Cup here. And the Hump Day Wild Card is in play …

    PS: Farmers Market Happenin’ Now

    At the Kootenai County Farmers Market in downtown Coeur d’Alene, Ashley Fotsch, 16, left, and Maddy Barnes by some gourmet artisan bread from Paul Lash of Pasty Depot this afternoon. The event continues until 7 o’clock. (Colin Mulvany/SR)

    Question: What do you usually buy when you go to your local farmers market?

    Otis G’s Guide To Traffic Jams

    • Merge into the left lane, because everybody else is.
    • Get irritated by the people flying by in the right lane, while wishing you were doing the same thing.
    • Get even more irritated at the people who let them in.
    • Let someone in from the right lane.
    • Realize there really was no reason to get in the left lane.
    • Watch emergency vehicles speed down the shoulder, and wish you could do the same thing.
    • Feel like the other lane is moving faster, regardless of which lane you’re in.

    More from Otis G Experience’s Guide To Stopped Freeway Traffic

    Question: Can you add anything to Otis G’s list re: what you think about when caught in a traffic jam?

    APhoto Of The Day — 6.24.09

    Belarusian neo-pagans jump over a bonfire celebrating the summer solstice near the town of Orsha, 200 km (125 miles) northeast of Minsk, Belarus, late Tuesday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. Unabashedly brown-nosing, Taryn and Bent jump at the chance to retrieve a judge’s last s’more — JohnA.
    • 2. Girl in phone call to Salon, “Please cancel my bikini wax I had scheduled for tomorrow” — Bayview Bob.
    • 3. Though Ivan had promised Anna a hot time, this wasn’t quite what she had in mind — CindyH.
    • HM: Cabbage Boy

    PM Scanner Traffic — 6.24.09

    • 5:21 p.m. PFPD Blue advises that 2 girls are waving @ traffic from the I-90/McGuire Road overpass and not doing anything else (in case dispatch gets calls).
    • 4:45 p.m. Someone dropped a poodle out of a vehicle @ Wilbur & Pinegrove/Hayden.
    • 4:37 p.m. Union Pacific reports that a train almost hit an e/b white Ford p/up w/crew cab that ran the signals on Highway 54/Athol.
    • 4:23 p.m. A vehicle is fully engulfed in fire @ Highway 41 on-ramp to I-90. Fire is spreading.
    • 4:13 p.m. Several callers report a newer blue pickup has almost had several head-on crashes as it weaves n/b in s/b H95 lanes from Parks Road/Athol. Update (4:19 p.m.): Driver rolled to a stop and now is passed out in a ditch, near Trinity. An R/P has locked himself in the pickup so the man can’t drive off if he regains consciousness. (Update 2 4:27 p.m.): Male has regained consciousness and become combative.
    • 4:12 p.m. Robert @ Pastime/Athol wants help getting back his pickup he loaned to a woman (also at the bar) three months ago.
    • 4:06 p.m. Wal*Mart won’t press charges against a female for shoplifting although she has prior convictions for petty theft. Store is looking for her male companion.
    • Much more below

    Hayden Woman Found Safe

    Jessica Lynn Waldvogel, has been located and is no longer of interest to the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department.  Waldvogel was found in good health traveling through Hardin Montana by the Big Horn County Sheriff’s Department/Lt. Lee Richardson, KCSD.

    OTV Review: Best Fish & Chips

    You can find out which restaurant offers the best fish & chips in the area, according to OrangeTV/Get Out! North Idaho here.

    Question: Which place do you think is best in the region for fish & chips, in particular? Or seafood, in general?

    Dead Grizzly Dooms St. Joe Project

    A plan to pave the Montana side of the Gold Center Road is dead in the water. It wasn’t sensitive fish spawning beds along the route that killed the $12 million Little Joe project, which was funded almost a decade ago and had been on the books for at least that long: A bear shot in central Idaho prompted the US Fish and Wildlife Service to put a stop to the road work, Greg Gifford of the federal highway administration said. “About two years ago a young grizzly bear was killed in the Clearwater,” Mr. Gifford said. “The hypothesis is that it wandered from the Cabinet-Yaak ecosystem into the Clearwater National Forest.” That led biologists to conclude that the St. Joe forest, which lies 100 miles south of the Yaak and just north of the Clearwater, is a travel corridor for grizzlies, which are a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act/Ralph Bartholdt, St. Maries Gazette-Record. More here.

    Question: Am I the only one who believes the decision to stop this long-anticipated project as a result of a grizzly killed more than 100 miles away is ridiculous?

    In The News: Sanford Admits Affair

    In this January 2007 file photo, South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford takes the oath of office for a second term with his wife Jenny and sons, from the left; Marshall III; Landon; Bolton and Blake, during inaugural ceremonies at the Statehouse in Columbia, S.C. Now, Sanford has admitted admitted Wednesday to an affair, and resigned his position as chair of the Republican Governor’s Association following a strange week in which the governor dropped off the grid and could not be located. Story here. (AP Photo/Mary Ann Chastain, File)

    Question: I notice in the comments period that some of our left-of-center Hucksters are holding this news up as another example of Republican “family values” hypocrisy. And it is. Yet, I feel that both sides have many examples of moral and ethical failure. At this point, is there any politician left that would shock you if s/he fell from grace?

    OTV: We Blew Nekkid Hippies’ Minds

    OrangeTV: I’ve been to People’s Park exactly once, about 15 years ago. I had rented a tux for a wedding the night before and my friend Grace had a fun idea. She got completely dressed up in a formal gown and went all the way glam with her hair and makeup and I wore my rented tux and we went to the nude beach dressed that way for a nice spring picnic. The double takes and stares we got from the crowd of naked hippies sunning and playing volleyball next to us were priceless. Complete comment below.

    Question: My wife once encountered a small group of naked beach lovers when she rounded a rock on the Big Sur (Calif.) shoreline. I was spared the vision because I’d settled onto the beach nearby to read a book. Have you ever had a surprise encounter similar to my wife’s?

    KerriT: She Said Yes, Oh Yes

    Rob Berger pulled off the near impossible on Sunday, and that’s not a reference to the 14.5 hours he spent on the Ironman course in adverse conditions. Rob, a 2001 Lake City HS grad, completed his MBA at Boston College in May after an undergrad education at Tufts University. He’s been dating Brittney Salvatore (PFHS 2006) for three years and made plans to propose in a memorable way. Rob completed Ironman Coeur d’Alene in 2007 so it was not surprising when he told Brittney he was training to do Ironman in Arizona or Canada later this year. Actually he was entered in the Coeur d’Alene event and planned to propose after he crossed the finish line/Kerri Thoreson, Main Street. More here.

    Question: Did you or your sweetheart propose marriage in a memorable way?

    AAUP Censors NIC Re: Teacher Flap

    Item: NIC subject of scolding: School violated academic freedom by letting part-timer go, AAUP says/Alison Boggs, SR

    More Info: The case of a North Idaho College instructor who wasn’t reappointed after a student accused her of bashing Republicans prompted a national organization to censure the Coeur d’Alene college, saying it violated the principles of academic freedom. The 47,000-member American Association of University Professors says the case will test the organization’s policies regarding treatment of part-time and adjunct faculty, who constitute about 50 percent of college and university instructors nationwide.

    Question: I’m all for academic freedom. However, after I’ve watched the SR newsroom halved in the last 8 years via layoffs and buyouts, I must admit I can’t get too excited re: a controversial part-time instructor not getting re-hired. And I off-base here?

    Poll: Which Ex-Zags Will Be Drafted?

    Gonzaga has had two players drafted in the same year before, but there’s a chance as many as four could be selected Thursday. Pargo is on a few mock drafts as a mid to late second-rounder. Downs has an outside shot to be drafted, but most anticipate he’ll get an opportunity as a free agent/Jim Meehan, SR. More here.

    • Tuesday’s Poll: 48 of 98 respondents (49%) said both the owner and his dog are to blame when the dog attacks someone; another 45 (46%) put all the blame on the owner.

    HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.24.09

    Jamie McCarthy, right, of Somers pumps his fist as he walks through downtown Kalispell during a Gay Pride parade put on by the Montana Pride Network on Saturday in Kalispell, Mont. (AP Photo/Daily Inter Lake, Nate Chute)

    High Noon: Moving-Day Terror

    For a few summers, it was like I moved every day. Now, I can’t stand the thought of my one move this year. While in college, my job during the warm months was as a laborer for a Mayflower moving franchise in Western Washington. We had a contract to do all the military moves in our Navy-centric town of Oak Harbor, so we always stayed busy and I quickly learned the ins and outs of a successful move. Poor planning is a big culprit in painful moves, and we saw the good, the bad and the things you wouldn’t believe. To this day I think the easiest move we went on was where the clients measured and laid out tape outlines on the floor of every piece of furniture and where it would go in their new house/Jon Meyer, 2C Etc. More here.

    Question: When did you last move into a new place? Did the move go well?

    AM Scanner Traffic — 6.24.09

    • 11:52 a.m. Dead deer in the w/b lane of travel on I-90 @ MP 34 (near High 3 overpass).
    • 11:45 a.m. Possible illegal burn of a slash pile off I-90 @ M/P 17, east of CdA.
    • 11:16 a.m. A foul odor is coming from a garage of a vacant house on Kelso/Spirit Lake. Update (12:25 p.m.): Source of odor is a deer carcass.
    • 10:52 a.m. Deputies staging for a suicide threat near Miles & Hillview/Hayden. 21YO male called a friend to say: “I love you. Goodbye.”
    • 10:34 a.m. Post Falls firemen are concerned that an intentionally set fire behind McDonalds is near dry grass and unsupervised.
    • 10:12 a.m. John wants to see a deputy re: owners walking their dogs in Broadmore Park/Hayden.
    • 9:25 a.m. Stoplights aren’t working @ 1st & Sherman/CdA.
    • 9:07 a.m. A man is en route from Worley to Spokane, where he says he’s going to shoot himself.
    • 8:52 a.m. Paramedics are rushing to Hughes Lane & Spokane Street/Post Falls, where a 10-month-old girl has accidentally poisoned herself by swallowing hypercodone.
    • 8:12 a.m. Gordon wants to speak w/an officer re: a kayak that was stolen from Upper Hayden Lake Road.

    Did You Know …

    … that the father of the man accused in that recent machete attack in Spokane was involved in the dispute over Sanders Beach — in a weird way 10 years after he died. Remember? Douglas W. Harmon’s father, E. Glenn Harmon, died in 1994 but resurfaced more than a decade later when a Kootenai County prosecutor claimed to have spoken with him in 2004. Bill Douglas said a court reporter misquoted him in a story you can read here. You can read all about the odd twists in this case on Meghann Cuniff’s Sirens & Gavels here. (Add “Twilight Zone” music here.)

    KR: Be Patient w/Bike Crash Probes

    If you’ve been concerned or impatient about the investigations of Boise’s three recent cycling fatalities, take a close read of today’s paper. Patrick Orr’s story and Police Chief Mike Masterson’s Reader’s View take a good step back from the heat of the moment. The fact is, it often takes months to investigate a fatal accident and to decide whether to press charges. This isn’t unusual. This is standard procedure. Law enforcement needs to take its time. Even when — especially when — public scrutiny is at its peak/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here.

    Question: In Boise, the public is in an uproar after recent crashes have claimed the life of three bicyclists. Do you feel safe while riding bikes on Inland Northwest streets and roadways.

    In The News: Diabetes Hearing

    Nick Jonas of The Jonas Brother, right, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington this morning before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on Type 1 Diabetes Research. He is joined by, from left, actress Mary Tyler Moore; Dr. Griffin Rodgers, Director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases; and boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

    Question: How have you or your family been affected by diabetes?

    Sting: Men Charged w/Lewd Conduct

    Item: Men charged with lewd conduct in sting operation/KREM

    More Info: More than a half dozen men are charged with lewd conduct in more than one Spokane park.  Police say the men engaged in criminal sexual activity in broad daylight.  An undercover police sting in People’s Park and High Bridge Park last Friday caught those suspects.  Police say they have video and photo evidence of the men in the act.

    Question: One man interviewed by KREM last night complained that a sting by Spokane police on lewd conduct in parks was a waste of manpower? Do you agree?

    Downtown Bike Cops Concern Man

    Item: Flexing their muscles or following protocol? Downtown bike cops draw concern from citizen; police tell different story/Tom Hasslinger, Press

    More Info: Gianotti snapped the picture because he had firsthand experience dealing with what he felt were too many officers for one minor infraction. A couple of years ago, he was ticketed for having an open container in City Park — and seven officers were on hand to issue his citation. So when he saw the recent huddle of officers around one possible violator, he picked up his camera. Not as a way to condemn the police department, he said, only as a way to question it. What is proper police policy?

    Question: Have you witnessed occasions when you believed too many law enforcement officers responded to a relatively minor violation?

    Pot Establishing Medicinal Niche

    Item: Pot establishing medicinal niche: Marijuana dispensaries’ legal status remain in limbo/John Stucke, SR

    More Info: Now that marijuana can be legally used to ease patients’ pain, dispensaries are opening in Spokane to provide it. And regardless of whether such stores are what Washington voters and legislators envisioned when they allowed medical marijuana, it may only be a matter of time before the businesses are commonplace: Medical marijuana has been approved in more than a dozen states. The dispensaries’ legal status, however, remains hazy.

    Question: Do you support the legalization of medical marijuana nationwide? And, in states like Washington where medical marijuana is legal, do you support the opening of dispensaries for it? 

    AM Headlines — 6.24.09

    Jerry Harmon, the surface general supervisor for the Kensington Mine, receives a hug from Rep. Cathy Munoz, R-Juneau, during a lunchtime rally on the steps of the Capitol in Juneau, Alaska, on Monday, after the Supreme Court upheld the government’s decision to issue permits to use Lower Slate Lake to hold mine tailings. The Supreme Court upheld a federal permit to dump waste from the Idaho-based Coeur d’Alene Mine Co.’s gold mine into Lower Slate Lake in the Tongass National Forest, even though all its fish would be killed. Environmentalists feared the ruling could weaken protection of other lakes, streams and waterways from mining waste. (AP Photo/The Juneau Empire, Michael Penn)

    Question: Do you support the decision by the Alaska Supreme Court to allow the Coeur d’Alene Mine Co. to dump pilings into a Tongass National Forest Lake?

    RP: Love Women In Camo

    Raymond Pert: I have examined all the photographs that have been posted of the BeerBQ fest. I do not believe Kerri’s presentation of s’mores swayed the judges. I have, however, concluded that Kerri was wearing intimidating camo and that her choice of fashion frightened the judges. I should add that Kerri looks great in camo and this added to the intimidation.

    Question: When was the last time you were camo? (I woulda asked whether you’ve ever worn camo, but this is Idaho, so I figured that was a given.)

    BillH: From My Cold, Dead Fingers

    BillH: Customs overturning or revoking 50 years of regulatory letters defining what “is” a switchblade goes way beyond an American company’s CEO hoping for a boost in sales. And TT, do you really think a guy who has made his living in the business and built a well respected comapny has no more “authority” on the subject than joe blow blog commenter? Really? … By the way, Idaho is one of the few states in the nation that doesn’t outlaw switchblades… when was the last time we had a big switchblade massacre or crime wave? Maybe it isn’t about halting switchblade violence, but about expanding government control?

    Question: Have you ever owned a real switchblade?

    ZK: About That Tehran Embassy

    Zelda Krup: OK. It used to be kind of amusing to watch the KXLY anchors stumble through current events, mispronounce words and sight-read the news each night. Tonight, however, I’m not laughing wryly. Robin Nance reported that the U.S. this July 4th will be inviting Iranian diplomats to its embassy in Tehran for a BBQ celebration. The United States — for reasons that should be abundantly obvious to anyone paying attention — does not have an embassy in Tehran. Full post below.

    Question: Which Spokane newscast makes the most mistakes?

    Heller: What’s A Sidekick?

    Joe Heller/Hellertoons

    Typewriter Day Wild Card — 6.23.09

    Today is the 174th day of 2009. There are 191 days left in the year. On this day in history: In 1989, the Supreme Court refused to shut down the “dial-a-porn” industry, ruling Congress had gone too far in passing a law banning all sexually oriented phone message services. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas is 61. Today we’re celebrating Typewriter Day - in observance of the typewriter being patented in 1868 by Christopher Sholes. In the news today, a Gallup Poll shows 59 percent of Americans approve of the job the Supreme Court does here. And the latest Wild Card is in play …

    38YO Hayden Woman Missing

    The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department is searching for a 38-year-old Hayden woman missing since Monday morning. Jessica Lynn Waldvogel is considered in danger because she is without her medication, officials said. Waldvogel was last seen when she left her home in the 9000 block of Maple Street in Hayden about 11:30 a.m. She was on foot, and was wearing a blue sweatshirt with a hood, blue jeans and a headband. Waldvogel is known to have friends in the Kellogg area. Anyone with information on Waldvogel’s whereabouts is asked to contact the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department immediately at (208) 446-1300/Sara Leaming, SR. 

    PS: Cutting Down On Cow Burps

    In this photo from last week, Tim Maikshilo holds open the mouth of one of his Holsteins in Coventry, Vt. Yogurt maker Stonyfield Farm wants its cows to burp less. It’s for a noble cause: cutting down on the gases that contribute to global warming. Working with 15 Vermont farms to change cows’ diets so they emit less methane, it has already reduced cow burping by as much as 18 percent. (AP Photo/Toby Talbot)

    Question: Can you burp well enough to win, show or place in a burping contest?

    Ants: Adam Had ‘Em

    I used the old rhyme by Ogden Nash to draw attention to a problem I have at Casa Oliveria. I have ants surfacing at several different spots around my spacious garden. In the past, I’ve sprinkled ant poison around large nests, with little effect. The ants this year are getting so aggressive that they’ve swarmed my brother when he accidentally stood in the general area of their nest and they’ve helped themselves to the dog’s food whenever we put it outside. Help!

    Question: How do you get rid of ants?

    Dan: Surviving Iraq @ 120 In Shade

    We got to talk to our son in Iraq today who called us on the occasion of his mom’s birthday. He talked about a few tips for making life in the desert more comfortable. If you want to feel cooler when it’s in the 120’s outside then visit one of the outhouses for awhile. It’s in the 130’s in there so when you come out, 120 something feels pretty good (for a little while anyway). Also try and get your shower time in the daylight. After dark the scorpions and camel spiders like the shower room as well. He never did like spiders and I guess camel spiders have about the same body and hair mass as a German Sheppard but aren’t near as user friendly. Full post below.

    Question: Describe the most miserable place that you’ve lived?

    PM Headlines — 6.23.09

    Gov. Butch Otter answers questions after announcing that his transportation funding task force won’t bring forward recommendations until just before the 2011 legislative session, rather than for the upcoming 2010 session. At left is Senate Transportation Chairman John McGee, R-Caldwell. Betsy Russell’s Eye On Boise story here. (Betsy Russell/SR)

    APhoto Of The Day — 6.23.09

    A deer, left, and a coyote freeze and stare at each other on the edge of the second fairway during the Mirror Pond Invitational Golf Tournament at Bend Golf & Country Club in Bend, Ore., Sunday. The two animals faced each other for more than a minute, with the coyote edging forward, until a woman ran at the coyote, scaring it away. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/The Bulletin, Andy Tullis )

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. “No, I haven’t seen your ‘lost balls’ and I don’t want to, and anyway, quit callin’ me ‘Dear’. Got it, ‘Coyote Ugly’? — JohnA.
    • 2. Deer…it’s what’s for dinner — Aliasjax.
    • 3. “My, Roadrunner, is that you? I hate to be rude, but you’ve gained weight… and I like it!” — Transplanted Texan.
    • HM: Charlie

    PM Scanner Traffic — 6.23.09

    • 6:06 p.m. A male is pushing another one @ Independence Point.
    • 5:55 p.m. 16YO is in a Dalton Gardens area garage after telling his girlfriend’s mom that he was going to kill himself.
    • 5:47 p.m. A Bayliner with 8 people aboard is out of gas a quarter mile from Blackwell Island.
    • 5:28 p.m. Motorcyclist is down and complaining of leg and foot injuries after crashing into a truck @ Highways 95 & 53. Traffic is blocked.
    • 5:26 p.m. A male in a white van is offering candy to kids swimming @ Sanders Beach.
    • 5:03 p.m. A 76YO man was a “bloody mess” after he appeared at his Nash Road (north of Spirit Lake) after a tractor accident on a nearby hillside.
    • 4:57 p.m. Deputy calls for back-up @ Humane Society/Ramsey Road, where three individuals are arguing loudly with a worker.
    • 4:44 p.m. A male who might have been in a fight refuses to leave the Two Lakes Motel/Lake Coeur d’Alene Drive and is trying to sleep off a drunk behind the motel.
    • 4:01 p.m. R/P reports a male passenger in a silver Chrysler pulled out a knife and indicated he would cut his throat @ I-90 MP 5 (Spokane Street). It also appeared that the two were smoking a pot pipe.
    • 3:48 p.m. R/P wants to speak to an officer re: 10 stray cows in his yard, an ongoing problem.
    • 3:43 p.m. 3 kids and a baby have been left in the car @ a local liquor store.
    • 3:42 p.m. 3 males and 1 female in two cars are in a dispute that’s blocking the i/s of H41 & Westwood/Post Falls.
    • 3:41 p.m. Debris from a large truck tire is lying on I-90 @ M/P 7.
    • Much more below

    TJX Settles w/Idaho, Other States

    In this 2007 file photo, a sign outside the TJX Cos. headquarters is seen in Framingham, Mass. TJX Cos., the parent company of retailers T.J. Maxx and Marshall’s, will pay $9.75 million in a settlement with multiple states, including Idaho, related to a massive data theft that exposed tens of millions of payment card numbers. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

    Question: How you ever had your credit card or Social Security numbers compromised — or been the victim of identity theft?

    Judges Caught In BeerBQ Scandal?

    At the BeerBQ, it was rumored that Kerri Thoreson, ultimate winner of the contest (with her quite-delicious beer balls, I think they’re called - sausage type food with a touch of jalapeno in the middle), attempted to influence the judges by bringing them (us) s’mores in the midst of the judging. I can confirm the facts of the controversy - we three judges were indeed in the midst of finalizing our decisions when Kerri came into Taryn’s kitchen with her s’mores. I also can confirm that Kerri insisted it was not a bribe, and that she claimed to have absolutely no idea what we were doing there in the kitchen - that she was just being the Good Samaritan that we are supposed to know her to be… I also can confirm that the s’mores were really quite delicious, and brought me back to those days of yore, when my girl scout troop went camping/Beth Bollinger, Accidental Rabbit Trails. More here.

    Question: OK, I sampled the beer balls — mebbe a half dozen of ‘em — and they were “quite-delicious,” as advertised above. However, I have to stay neutral and above the fray here. So I must ask: Do you think Kerri’s, ahem, Good Samaritan s’mores visit swung the voting?

    Buck Concerned Re: Knife Rule

    Item: Buck concerned about knife rule: Although proposed federal regulatory change doesn’t affect Idaho company, firm’s CEO says he’s still nervous/William Spence, Lewiston Tribune

    More Info: However, (C.J. Buck, president and CEO of Buck Knives said): ”the thing that has me nervous is that the language Customs used to cast the net wide enough to capture these assisted-opening knives could be used to capture just about every folding knife made in the country. But the broader issue is that this is a kind of bureaucratic activism. Customs is bypassing the legislative process and implementing regulations that aren’t what was originally intended.”

    Question: Does C.J. Buck have a legitimate concern re: the potential for “bureaucratic activism” by U.S. Customs?

    Poll: Bad Dogs? Bad Owners?

    Sheriff’s deputies said it’s the first case of its kind they can remember in King County — one in which a pit bull was used as a weapon in brutal attacks on women. About 6:30 p.m., a 63-year-old woman stopped her car in SeaTac when she saw four kids kicking a pit bull. A 15-year-old girl told her to mind her own business, then punched her in the head, police say. The dog bit the woman, causing bruises and puncture wounds on her hand and thigh. Another woman watched the attack and followed the kids to North SeaTac Park. Once the kids realized they were being followed, police said, the 15-year-old head-butted, punched and kicked the second woman so hard that the teen’s foot was injured/Seattle P-I. More here.

    KREM: Worker Hurt @ JD Lumber

    The Bonner County Sheriff’s office confirms there has been some kind of accident at JD Lumber in Priest River, Idaho. A JD Lumber worker tells us another company recenlty bought their old saw mill and is on site dismantling it. That worker doesn’t have any details on what’s going on but says Sheriff’s deputies, firefighters and paramedics responded to the scene/KREM. More here.

    2C Etc: Summer Ain’t All Great

    Here’s my rebuttal or what I don’t like about summer … especially THIS YEAR. Coming to work without a coat and wishing you’d worn your snowsuit. Trying to keep the kids happy, busy and not bored. Weeds. Tube tops and shorts on those who should NEVER wear tube tops and shorts. Deadheading every flower in the garden on Monday and having to start over on Friday. Weeds. Dull lawn mower blades that shoot large hard green clumps of petrified grass through shed windows. Grilled hamburgers that fall apart and through the grate BEFORE they’re cooked and ready to eat. Weeds. Flies, spiders, earwigs and mosquitoes. … Loud, obnoxious neighbors who used to be that way … INSIDE. Weeds/Ida Chatter, 2C Etc. More here.

    Question: Is there anything you don’t like about summer?

    Alexie Book Wins Censorship Fight

    Sherman Alexie’s award-winning book is once again the subject of a school censorship fight. This time, the book won. Alexie, a native of the Spokane Indian Reservation and world-renowned author, won the National Book Award for “The Absolute True Diary of a Part-Time Indian,” a semi-autobiographical story about a 14-year-old American Indian who leaves the reservation to attend an all-white high school. Parents at a Chicago suburban high school protested the book’s sexual content when it was included in a summer reading list for incoming freshmen, reports the Chicago Tribune. But after reading the book, the school superintendent and two school board members decided to keep it on the list and offer alternative reading to those who disagreed/Monica Guzman, The Big Blog. More here.

    Question: Do you consider any book off limits for a high school freshman?

    HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.23.09

    Soft white winter wheat is shown turning from the green color of growth, to the brown color of harvest in a field near Mann Lake on Monday in Lewiston. (AP Photo/Lewiston Tribune, Barry Kough)

    Noon: Did NYTimes Do Right Thing?

    At the downtown office this afternoon, Editor Gary Graham (pictured) will lead a newsroom discussion about the acknowledgement by the New York Times this week that it concealed the news that one of its reporters had been held captive for seven months. Gary primed the discussion by sending out this e-mail a few minutes ago: “If one of our staff members is kidnapped by a radical group, should we withhold that information from the public? I’m referencing, of course, to the New York Times case of the reporter who had been held hostage by the Taliban. The Times, AP and other organizations withheld the news because their security advisers said it would exacerbate the problem.”

    Question: Did the New York Times, AP, and other news organizations do the right thing by withholding the news?

    AM Scanner Traffic — 6.23.09

    • 11:57 a.m. A truck and a golf cart have collided w/o injuries (didn’t get location).
    • 11:04 a.m. Tenant & landlord involving in shouting match on Ocean Avenue/CdA.
    • 10:09 a.m. A Wyoming Avenue/Hayden resident is following a juvenile w/long black hair who stole a bike out of his garage. Two juveniles were involved in the burglary.
    • 9:02 a.m. Some sort of incendiary device has exploded in a mailbox @ Highway 97 & Whistle Road/Harrison. Smoke is pouring out of the mailbox. Update: (1:28 p.m.) KCSD report.
    • 8:59 a.m. An NIC maintenance man has spotted thousands of ants pouring out of a crack in concrete on campus, stating it “must be breeding season.”
    • 8:53 a.m. An elderly panhandler is having trouble walking in the parking lot of Super 1/Hayden. Store employees are afraid he’s going to collapse and be hit by a vehicle.
    • 7:50 a.m. 3 horses are running loose @ 16th & Firestone/Post Falls. Update (8:01 a.m.): Horses are “back where they belong.”

    Minnick: DC Should Be Like Idaho

    However, over the last several months it has become clear that our nation’s political system too often forces the placement of party and ideological interests before the interests of individual states and citizens. And that means the only thing wholly represented in Washington, D.C., is the dysfunctional culture of Washington. D.C. We must change our political culture from partisan to effective, from angry to collaborative. Doing that requires more than a desire and willingness to change. It takes more than sending new people to Congress who, like me, are not afraid to cross party lines. It will in fact take a new devotion to independence, to personal freedom, to the core values defining us as a people. It will, in short, mean making Washington, D.C., a lot more like Idaho/Rep. Walt Minnick, D-Idaho. More here. Hat Tip: Treasured Valley

    Question: Do you agree w/Walt Minnick that Washington, D.C., would be a lot healthier if it adopted Idaho’s values of “Hard work. Personal freedom. Paying for what you spend. Insisting upon limited, effective government.  A right to privacy. The opportunity to succeed:?

    Zehm Cop Was KCSD Captain In ‘90s

    Spokane Police officer Karl Thompson practices at the Spokane Police Department Regional Training Center shooting range, in this July 30, 2008, photo. Thompson who was charged, Monday with repeatedly striking Otto Zehm with a baton and tasering him during a confrontation in a convenience store, worked as a Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department captain under former Sheriff Pierce Clegg. This, according to sheriff’s sources. He resigned his job on May 12, 1995, and later ran unsuccessfully as a Democrat against Clegg in November 1996. You can read a 1996 candidate profile of Thompson here and the results of the 1996 sheriff’s race here. (AP Photo/The Spokesman-Review, Dan Pelle)

    US Products Move To Cost 40 Jobs

    Item: Local plant moving operations to Mexico: 40 people will lose jobs on parent company’s decision/Alecia Warren, Press

    More Info: “Obviously I’m saddened because we’ve got such a great group of folks in our plant that have dedicated many years to U.S. Products,” (General Manager Doug) Hauff said, adding that the company hasn’t pegged if any locals will be offered jobs in Mexico. “My personal goal — and one I will work very hard to establish — is getting new jobs for those who want help.”

    New Question (offered by Randy Stapilus/Ridenbaugh Press): Will they still call them U.S. Products? And if so, will they try to do it with a straight face? 

    Click It Or Ticket Patrol Nabs 351

    Item: Spokane County deputies cite 351 during emphasis patrols/Mike Prager, SR

    More Info: Law enforcement in Spokane County wrote 351 citations this spring for people not wearing seat belts during their annual “click it or ticket” emphasis patrols. Results from the night time enforcement from May 21 through June 7 were released today by the Washington Traffic Safety Commission. Along with the seat belt violations, officers made 10 arrests. They involved three for driving while intoxicated, six for outstanding misdemeanor warrants and one for an unspecified felony.

    Question: Do you wish Idaho had a “click it or ticket” law that allowed officers to conduct emphasis patrols and pull motorists over for not buckling up?

    DC: Finally, Justice For Otto Zehm

    Well, hallelujah! Turns out a brute with a badge can’t just get away with thumping and shocking the hell out of an innocent, mentally ill janitor in this town. I know. Suspects are innocent until proven guilty. Let Spokane police Officer Karl F. Thompson Jr. have his day in court for his violent encounter with Otto Zehm. For the moment, however, I’m savoring the sweet sounds of U.S. Attorney James McDevitt (pictured Monday) handing down two indictments against Thompson. Count One: Thompson “struck and repeatedly struck Otto Zehm with a baton and tasered him …” Count Two: Thompson knowingly lied to investigators. Monday’s trip to the federal building made me proud I’m still a journalist. Thompson faces up to 30 years in the joint, although we all know that sort of sentence will never happen/Doug Clark, SR. More here.

    Question: How do you think this case will play out?

    AM Headlines — 6.23.09

    Solo the trumpeter swan swims with his brood at Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge. It is the first brood he has had in the last 20 years and refuge staff estimate he has been coming to Turnbull for almost 40 years. Story here. (Christopher Anderson/SR)

    Question: How old were you when your last child was born?

    ‘Tonight’s‘ Ed McMahon, 86, RIP

    In this May 22, 1992, file photo, Ed McMahon, left, shakes hands with talk show host Johnny Carson, during the final taping of the “Tonight Show” in Burbank, Calif. McMahon has died at a Los Angeles hospital, according to his publicist. He was 86. Story here. (AP Photo/Douglas C. Pizac, File)

    MJD: How About An HBO Cookbook?

    MamaJD: After all the pictures and talk of blogger food, I’ve come up with an idea: Oliveria’s Own. Just like Paul Newman’s Own. Photoshoppers — make a label with DFO’s pic. Bent’s Brew, Stickman’s Gold, Bayview Herb’s Potato Salad, KerriT’s Beer Balls, blah, blah, blah. Or better yet, instead of infringing on copyrights, can we just maybe do a HBO cookbook? I would actually pay money for Bent’s recipe on the bacon-wrapped stuffed peppers that I saw.

    Question: Any of you Merry Hucksters want to do a cookbook? What recipe could you offer?

    Charlie: Don’t Smell Like Ashtray

    Charlie: You have to quit smoking to become a true advocate. I quit cold turkey 12 years ago and anyone I happen upon who smokes I tell them they to can quit, but the desire will always remain. It’s no fun but you can do it. The plus of quitting is that you don’t smell like an ashtray.

    Question: Have you been able to quit smoking?

    Spokane To Rally Vs. Police Abuse

    ALoafOfBread: This Thursday (6/25) at 5pm at Spokane City Hall, folks from many community groups will be rallying against police abuse and for police accountability. The focus will be calling on the city to push for full investigative authority for the Ombudsman when the city re-negotiates its contract with the police guild this summer. We welcome everyone to come join us in this nonviolent expression of the outrage, distrust, embarrassment, and concern that so many in our community feel about the ongoing SERIES of incidents and the city’s continually unsatisfying responses.

    Question: What would happen in Coeur d’Alene or Post Falls, if the local police were involved in the sort of shenanigans that seem to be an ongoing thing in Spokane?

    Ramirez: So Much For Iran Freedom

    Michael Ramirez/Investor’s Business Daily

    Okinawa Wild Card — 6.22.09

    Today is the 173rd day of 2009. There are 192 days left in the year. On this day in history: In 1945, the World War II battle for Okinawa ended with an Allied victory; some 13,000 Americans and 90,000 Japanese soldiers, plus 130,000 civilians, were killed in the nearly three-month campaign. In 1969, singer-actress Judy Garland died in London at age 47. Singer-actor Kris Kristofferson is 73. In the news today, the Dow experienced its worst day in two months today here. And today’s Wild Card remains in play …

    PS: DC Train Crash Kills 6

    District of Columbia Fire and Emergency workers at the site of a rush-hour collision between two Metro transit trains in northeast Washington, D.C., today. Story here. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

    Obama Signs Tough Anti-Smokng Bill

    Item: Obama signs tough anti-smoking bill, but quitting the habit himself is tougher/Political Intelligence

    More Info: Obama then added his own well-publicized fight with tobacco for emphasis. “Almost 90 percent of all smokers began at or before their 18th birthday,” he said. “I know — I was one of these teenagers, and so I know how difficult it can be to break this habit when it’s been with you for a long time.” Before running for president, Obama famously made a deal with his wife, First Lady Michelle Obama: she would fully support his run for the White House if he quit smoking. During the campaign, Obama used nicotine gum to break the habit, but since his election he has declined to say he has quit smoking for good.

    Question: Does President Obama’s struggle to break the nicotine habit make him a good advocate for an anti-smoking crackdown? Or a poor one?

    PM Headlines — 6.22.09

    “A baby robin crash landed from a nest in one of our poplar trees and took refuge in the flower bed,” posts Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. A few hours later, with a little human intervention and strategic placement in a lower branch of the tree, he happily hopped and flew back up to safety.

    APhoto Of The Day — 6.22.09

    Devon O’Neil leaps into the air as he leads his team across the finish line for a repeat championship in the 3rd annual Outhouse Races on Ridge Street in Breckenridge, Colo., Sunday. Joining O’Neil for the championship run was Jeff Tarczan, right, Tina Lamers, sitting, and Tim Bennett, pushing from behind. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Summit Daily News, Mark Fox)

    • 1. Pooped, but flushed with success, Tina is her team’s version of Johnny on the pot — JohnA.
    • 2. Devon gets and unexpected burst of power from a gas attack — Charlie.
    • 3. Pushing from behind key to outhouse success — Aliasjax.

    PM Scanner Traffic — 6.22.09

    • 5:49 p.m. R/P is worried re: the welfare of boys playing baseball on the street @ Dakota & Justen Drive/Hayden.
    • 5:46 p.m. Horse running loose on Highway 53 @ Ramsey Road.
    • 5:19 p.m. ISP officer changing a flat on I-90 @ Fourth of July Pass.
    • 4:50 p.m. Wal*Mart wants help finding a shoplifter, in light pink shorts w/o shoes, who dropped items when spotted and ran into a nearby subdivision.
    • 4:42 p.m. Woman has lost her brown-and-white pitbull near Albertson’s/CdA.
    • 4:23 p.m. Shoplifter caught @ Super 1/CdA is being cooperative.
    • 4:05 p.m. R/P reports that someone is shooting with a high-caliber gun @ Cedar Grove & Garwood. He’d like an officer to check it out b/c there’s no shooting range nearby.
    • 4:02 p.m. A resident of Maple/Hayden fears that a strange plant growing on his property may be marijuana.

    2 Hurt In Priest River Area Crash

    Two drivers sustained non-life-threatening injuries @ 12:55 p.m. today when a mechanical problem caused a 1999 Mazda driven by Amanda Giannone, 20, of Newport, Wash., to side-swipe a Freightliner truck with a dump trailer. Giannone drove off the south shoulder of US 2 @ M/P 17.5 (east of Priest River), overcorrected, and hit a truck driven by Michael Lowe, 46, of Priest River. Giannone’s car was split in half. She was wearing a seatbelt. The semi slid off the north shoulder and the driver was ejected out of the passenger side window, he was not wearing a seatbelt. Full report below.

    Lawnmower Races Bring Out T-Shirts

    At Taryn Hecker’s Photography blog, Taryn provides several photos of interesting TeeHee-shirt messages that she saw at the Spirit Lake event of the year — the Big Back-In Lawnmower Drag Races on Spirit Lake’s Maine Street. Posts Taryn: “The event brings out some of the most colorful characters in all of North Idaho, too. One of my friends said the event was a little ‘rednecky’ for her taste. Being an Idaho girl, I just can’t get enough of the local flavor.” You can find a sampling of the T’s folks were sporting at Sunday’s event here.

    Question: What TeeHee-Shirt message would you wear to Spirit Lake’s lawnmower races?

    Officer Indicted In Otto Zehm Death

    Item: SPD officer indicted in Otto Zehm death/Thomas Clouse, SR

    More Info: A federal grand jury has indicted the first officer who responded to a confrontation with mentally ill janitor Otto Zehm, which resulted in Zehm’s death and sparked a cry for citizen police oversight. U.S. Attorney James McDevitt announced that the grand jury has indicted veteran Spokane Police Officer Karl Thompson, who was the first of seven officers to confront Zehm, a 36-year-old janitor who had schizophrenia. Zehm died two days after he was beaten with a baton, shocked multiple times with a Taser and hogtied inside the Zip Trip at 1712 N. Division St.

    Question: In the comments section, HMOffsuite posts and link to this story and comments: “It looks like Otto Zehm may receive the justice that he deserves.” Do you agree with that assessment?

    CdA To Host Ex-Cop Biker Parade

    A permit was issued to the “Cal-Tex Riders,” an organization of retired law enforcement officers for an organized ride through Coeur d’Alene this Thursday. The 100+ motorcycles will be led and followed by police escorts. Streets will not be barricaded closed for the event. The ride will start at 11 am beginning at the Coeur d’Alene Inn going east to Highway 95, then south on Highway 95 onto Northwest Boulevard southbound to Sherman, and athen long Sherman Avenue from 1st to 23rd. The event will be over by 11:45 a.m./Coeur d’Alene Today.

    Question: Do you like all the events that occurred in downtown Coeur d’Alene? Or do you think city officials should limit the number of them?

    HBlogos: Taryn Launches New Blog

    “At the Grand Opening BeerBBQ for my new studio (co-hosted by my good buddy, Bent), Kerri Thoreson asked me if I had a wind machine in the studio. No. But then I remembered: I have a leaf blower,” posts Taryn Hecker on her new Taryn A. Hecker Photography blog. Guess what? A leaf blower makes for some wonderful high-fashion shoots. More here.

    Question: Obviously, Taryn’s use of a leaf blower to mimic the wind for a photo shoot proves she’s a resourceful gal with deep roots in North Idaho. Can you think of a time when you’ve used North Idaho ingenuity to solve a problem?

    Postage Due Found In Mailbox

    New Hampshire postal worker George Knapp shows off an 8-week-old kitten that he adopted Monday at the MSPCA in Boston. The two-pound kitten, who Knapp is naming PD for Postage Due, was abandoned in a public mailbox in Boston earlier this month. (AP Photo/Eric J. Shelton)

    Question: Have you ever adopted a pet from an animal shelter. Did it turn out OK?

    BB: Movie, Summer ‘96 Lured Me In

    Beth Bollinger/Accidental Rabbit Trails: But it was the summer of 1996, when I was an extra in the “Dante’s Peak” movie (filmed in Wallace) that made me stay in the PNW. What a beautiful summer it was. Afternoon thunderstorms rolling in. Nothing like the 90s and 100s we’ve had in subsequent years, at least as I remember it.

    Question (for non-natives): What brought you to the Inland Northwest?

    2C Etc: Summertime And The Livin’ …

    “What is so rare as a day in June?” the poet asked. (Just a second, let me Google it to find which one.) Ah, James Russell Lowell (1819-1891), according to a Web site about birds. (Why birds? Maybe June is their favorite month, too.) The next line of the poem? “Then, if ever, come perfect days.” Days in June in my native state, Texas, were not so much rare or perfect as pretty much insufferable. Hotter than heck day in and day out. Mid 90s more often than not, unless a storm blew through and dropped the temperature but cranked the relative humidity up to about 85 percent. June here in Southwest Idaho, well that’s a completely different matter. Especially this June/Mike Butts, 2C Etc., Idaho Press Tribune. More here.

    Question: First, we need to address the elephant in the living room. Summer hasn’t arrived in North Idaho, yet. At best, our June feels like early spring. Now, onward. What were summers like in the town in which you grew up?

    HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.22.09

    Lawrence McDonald, center, of Pullman, Wash., dances during the grand entry at the 32nd annual Chief Joseph and Warriors Memorial powwow in Saturday in Lapwai. (AP Photo/Lewiston Tribune, Kyle Mills)

    CdA Mines Gets OK To Dump Waste

    The Supreme Court on Monday upheld a federal permit to dump waste from an Alaskan gold mine into a nearby lake, even though all its fish would be killed. Environmentalists feared the ruling could weaken protection of other lakes, streams and waterways from mining waste. By a 6-3 vote, the justices said a federal appeals court wrongly blocked on environmental grounds the Army Corps of Engineer’s waste disposal permit for the Kensington gold mine 45 miles north of Juneau. The mine, which had been closed since 1928 and owned by Idaho-based Coeur d’Alene Mines Co., has been awaiting a resumption of operation, pending approval of the waste disposal/Associated Press. More here.

    Question: Is anyone else stunned by this ruling?

    HBO Poll: Underage Drinking

    High Noon: Dressing For Work

    Models prepare during the Sao Paulo Fashion Week in Sao Paulo, Saturday. (AP Photo/Nelson Antoine)

    Question: Obviously, models are faster changers than the rest of us. It takes me about an hour to shower, groom, dress, grab a bite and get to work in the morning. How long does it take you to get ready?

    AM Scanner Traffic — 6.22.09

    • 11:59 a.m. City workers in charge of dismantling stands and other remainders of Ironman Coeur d’Alene say the work is almost finished downtown.
    • 10:41 a.m. Sharon on Fernan Lake Road reports gas was siphoned out of vehicle.
    • 10:37 a.m. Officer is dealing w/a troublesome panhandler @ the Huetter rest stop.
    • 8:53 a.m. Broken pallets are creating a safety hazard e/b on I-90 @ Sherman.
    • 8:30 a.m. PFPD Blue is looking for a runaway 17YO named Christina who has died blond hair with pink underlights.
    • 8:25 a.m. Nettleton Gulch resident reports that his neighbor may be using jet fuel in his vehicles.

    Low Road Bids Save Idaho Millions

    Idaho is saving tens of millions because construction bids on its big federal stimulus-funded highway projects - including the Dover Bridge in North Idaho and the Vista Interchange in Boise - are coming in so far under budget. The result: Instead of just the eight big projects around the state that are planned, Idaho should be able to add to its list, and a North Idaho bottleneck on U.S. Highway 95 could benefit. “They are very competitive bids, extremely competitive,” said Jeff Stratten, spokesman for the Idaho Transportation Department. “Contractors are eager and hungry to go to work, and their bids are reflecting it.” Said ITD board member Jim Coleman, “We’re getting five or six bids in places that we would get one or two before”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

    My 2 Cents: Who Needs Father’s Day?

    In a recent post, Dennis Mansfield suggests that Mother’s/Father’s Day is some sort of grand conspiracy by the Hallmark card company to sell product and make kids and the nonparticipatory spouse feel guilty. And he loves Christmas and birthdays. I, on the other hand, view gift-giving days with fear, especially since the kids have left the nest and are no longer around to provide ideas for gifts to give my wife. I view gift-giving days (Christmas, Valentine’s Day, birthdays, Mother’s Day) with fear and loathing. I don’t mind spending the money. I simply don’t like buying the wrong thing. I did once. Big time. In Lewiston. And I still hear about it occasionally. Yeah, it was that bad — and no I’m not going to tell you what it was. For a brief period, I conned Mrs. O into providing a list of gifts she’d like for Christmas. I was delighted. But she put an end to that by saying she preferred that I pick out something. More below.

    29 Words: Ironman Coeur d’Alene

    Their bodies of bronze flood the street,
          with abs made of steel they’re replete,
          they swim, run and pedal,
          each testing their mettle,
          the Ironmen come again to compete!

    Mike/29 Words Or Less

    BeerBQ Brings Together D’s, R’s

    At Taryn & Bent’s BeerBQ Cookoff Saturday, ThomG, head of the local D’s, chats with local Repub official Duane Rasmussen at Taryn’s place in Spirit Lake. Which proves that free food, good homemade beer and Huckleberries Online can bring together individuals with a wide variety of socio-political views on life.

    • More BeerBQ photos: from Taryn here, from Meghann here, from Bayview Herb here and here, Jeff Selle’s photos here, from Mia here, and from Councilwoman KerriT .

    Shocker: Obama Isn’t Transparent

    The Obama Administration told a bunch of whoppers: it was going to support gay rights; it was going to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell; it was going to close Gitmo right away; it was going to pull our troops out of Iraq almost immediately; it was going to have no lobbyists working in the government; it was going to be transparent; it was going to have every bill visible in final form for five days before Obama signed it. And unfortunately, the mainstream media bought all this garbage, asking no questions, never challenging candidate Obama about how all this was going to happen. And they are now just barely starting to challenge President Obama when they discover that he either lied to them, or didn’t have a clue what he was getting himself into as President/Clayton Cramer. More here.

    Question: Do you believe the Obama administration is transparent enough?

    Ironman Coeur d’Alene Recap

    Pediatrician Lauren Kearney, 43, of Carlsbad, Ca, flashes the victory sign as she completes her first swim lap at the Coeur d’Alene Ironman. (Dan Pelle/SR)

    Question: How did you spend Ironman Coeur d’Alene Sunday?

    20% Bought Booze For Minors

    Item: Adults cited for buying booze for kids in Boise/Statesman

    More Info: About 20 percent of adults approached by minors outside grocery and convenience stores between 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. Thursday bought alcohol for the underage strangers, according to Boise police officer Jermaine Galloway. The two minors who were soliciting adults to buy alcohol for them were girls younger than 18 who clearly looked younger than 21 years old, Galloway said. Providing alcohol to minors is a misdemeanor. The penalty is from $500 to $1,000, plus up to one year in jail

    New Question: As minor, did you ever ask an adult to buy booze for you?

    Drug Thefts Prompt Jail Changes

    Item: Drug thefts at jail led to policy changes: Eleven employees disciplined or fired for taking inmates’ medications/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR

    More Info: The ISP investigation found that inmate prescriptions were left on carts in a room with little security or supervision. Pills left over after inmates were discharged, or that were refused, were tossed in a bin marked for disposal; it was from this bin that most of the thefts occurred. This lack of security and poor record-keeping enabled the thefts, records show, and it contributed to a Bonner County prosecutor’s decision not to file criminal charges. In explaining his decision, Prosecutor Louis Marshall cited a lack of evidence such as recovered stolen pills or records proving the thefts, documents show.

    Question: Sheriff Rocky Watson refused to explain why different punishments were handed out to the almost dozen jailers involved in this scandal. He has also said that the jail has addressed the haphazard method in handling prescription drugs. Do you think the public has a right to demand  candor on this matter from the sheriff?

    AM Headlines — 6.22.09

    Museum of North Idaho board of trustees member/ volunteer Kathy Arneson near the steamboat display at the museum in Coeur d’Alene last week. The museum staff is beginning an awareness campaign in preparation for fund raising to build a modern new museum. Story by Carl Gidlund here. (Kathy Plonka/SR)

    He Should Love You More Than I Do

    In the Man on the Street section of the Handle Extra Sunday, five people @ Java on Sherman were asked: “What’s the best advice your dad ever gave you?” The SR questioners, of course, had Father’s Day in mind. Mrs. O and I both appreciate the answer given by Sarah McHugh of Dalton: “It would be something along the llines of ‘If he doesn’t care for you as much as I do, then he’s not worth it.”

    Question: What do you think of the advice that Sarah’s father gave her? Or: What’s the best advice that your father ever gave you?

    Dalton Students Pick CdA’s Wonders

    Before breaking for summer vacation, Sheryl Rasmussen, advanced learning teacher at Dalton Elementary, asked her students to localize the Seven Wonders of the World. They proposed a list of Wonders of Coeur d’Alene. And the Dalton Elementary student body voted on them. Figpickels Toy Emporium on Sherman Avenue was selected as the No. 1 Wonder of Coeur d’Alene. Here’s the top seven wonders:

    • 1. Figpickels Toy Emporium
    • 2. Silverwood Theme Park
    • 3. The floating green at the Coeur d’Alene Resort Golf Course
    • 4. The Coeur d’Alene Resort
    • 5. Mineral Ridge
    • 6. Lake Coeur d’Alene
    • 7. Tubbs Hill

    Question: What would you pick as the top wonders of Coeur d’Alene/North Idaho?

    OrangeTV: Jalapenos

    I chose Chile Relleno, Beef Tamale and Shredded Beef Taco; the best three amigos since Steve Martin, Chevy Chase and Martin Short. It’s easy to fill up on tortilla chips if the food takes to long to arrive, especially when they’re as fresh and addictive as the ones served at Jalapenos. Thankfully, we avoided this dilemma with the swift appearance of our meals, which arrived just in time to order another margarita. Our server courteously explained the scorching drama of our oven-hot plates, but it was obvious anyway. I could literally hear a bubbling sound from the layers of yellow and white cheese that coated everything on my plate/OrangeTV, Get Out! North Idaho. More here.

    Question: What is your favorite Mexican dish?

    Ramirez: Kennedy Bill

    Michael Ramirez/Investor’s Business Daily

    And The Ironman CdA Winner Is …

    First place finisher Francisco Potano approaches the finish line of the Ironman Coeur d’Alene Sunday afternoon in downtown Coeur d’Alene. Potano finished with the time 8:32:12. Original story and more photos here. (Bruce Twitchell/Special to The Spokesman-Review)

    PWC Crash Kills Man On Hayden Lake

    At 12:45 p.m., deputies from the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department Recreation Safety Section and personnel from the Northern Lakes Fire Department responded to the Hayden Lake Marina on Hayden Lake for an injury Personal Watercraft accident.  When units arrived on scene, they learned that James H. Graham an 18 year old male from Spokane WA and his brother, John M. Graham an 19 year old male also from Spokane WA, had been operating Personal Watercrafts in the area of Windy Bay on Hayden Lake.  According to witnesses, James Graham made a sharp turn and John Graham ended up striking James while he was sitting on his watercraft. James was transported to the Hayden Lake Marina by a private vessel where he was treated for his injuries by medical personnel.  James was then transported to KMC where he was pronounced deceased due to his injuries. The investigation is ongoing and it appears alcohol was not a factor in the accident/Deputy Ryan Higgins, KCSD news release. 

    Fathers Day Wild Card — 6.21.09

    Some of the other Merry Hucksters will be by a little later to provide their impressions of the first Taryn & Bent BeerBQ Cookoff. But I’ll dub it a roaring success. (You can read Herb’s report here.) Dunno who won the cookoff between Bent, Redman and others because I left a little early. But I do know that the fare they laid before us was well worth the drive to Spirit Lake. I stuffed myself with Councilwoman KerriT’s beer balls and finally tasted Herb’s regionally famous potato salad. (BTW, that’s Meghann Cuniff w/Herb’s banjo above.) I already knew Bent’s personal brew was good from Blogfest ‘09. I made doubly sure by testing one with a berry tinge and another with an apple one. Mrs. Bent was handing out the brewskis. Some Merry Hucksters and a blurker of two showed up for the first time at one of our fests. Taryn was the perfect hostess. All in all, a great time — and the weather cooperated. You can use this Wild Card to discuss the BeerBQ (for those who attended) or to start your own threads …

    Stryker Brigade To Afghanistan For Year

    Capt. Nick Carlton tosses 2-year-old Ryan into the air directly following his Stryker Brigade’s Deployment Ceremony at Fort Lewis, near Tacoma, Wash., Friday.  About 3,900 soldiers from 5th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division will begin leaving this month for a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan. (AP Photo/The News Tribune, Janet Jensen)

    Question: The Marine son of one of my best friends will be headed for his third tour of duty in the Middle East in a few months, leaving behind a wife and a new son. This time he’s going to Afghanistan instead of Iran. Do you think Barack Obama is doing all he can to bring the troops home, as he promised during the campaign?

    Report: 92YO Cronkite Seriously Ill

    Item: Veteran CBS newsman Walter Cronkite reportedly ill/AP

    More Info: CBS isn’t commenting on reports that veteran newsman Walter Cronkite is gravely ill. The 92-year-old former anchor of “The CBS Evening News,” who has been ailing for some time, has reportedly taken a turn for the worse, according to TVNewser and other online sites. CBS News spokesman Kevin Tedesco had no comment on Friday. The face of CBS News for more than two decades, Cronkite was named “the most trusted man in America” in a 1972 “trust index” survey, and he ended each broadcast with the reassuring signoff, “And that’s the way it is.”

    Question: Who is your favorite all-time national newscaster?

    Rookie Firemen Train For Intense Season

    Kelsey Larsen had barely shed her cap and gown after graduating from Colville High School two weeks ago before exchanging them for green Nomex pants, a yellow fireproof shirt, and a hard hat. Larsen, 18, will get used to her new garb over the next three months as a wildland firefighter. She is one of 50 new firefighters hired by state and federal agencies to battle blazes in forests and public lands this summer in Washington. She and the other rookies spent this week training at the Chewelah Peak Learning Center in the Colville National Forest. Most of the new firefighters are college students interested in fire science or forestry. It’s rigorous, treacherous work, and pay for a seasonal firefighter is decent: $6,000 to $10,000 for three months of work/Sara Leaming, SR. More here.

    Question: What was your toughest summer job?

    HBO Poll: Greatest BeerBQ Attraction?

    TH; Weeds Need Whacking For BeerBQ

    Taryn Hecker: I’m getting ready to make my awesome Red Kidney Bean/Water Chestnut Salad in Garlic Aioli and my Orzo Mediterranean Salad. And then the fun stuff … like cleaning the bathrooms and finishing the weedwhacking. I spent two hours last night wondering why the line in my weedwhacker kept falling out and realized I had the completely wrong head in the weedwhacker. I made it half way around the yard before it got dark. If I don’t get it done, I’m just gonna try to pass the tall grass around the perimeter off as country gardening.

    Question: Is anyone going to complain @ Taryn & Bent’s BeerBQ if Taryn hasn’t whacked all the weeds in her yard by 3 o’clock today?

    NA: I Drew Line @ Toothpaste

    Nick Adams: PETA did change the way I view the testing of cosmetic products on animals. I went a couple of years trying to completely avoid their list of animal tested products. I drew the line at toothpaste, though. Tom’s of Maine is possibly the worst tasting product ever produced. I just couldn’t start and end every day with that awful crap.

    Question: Did you ever give up something you liked or used, as a matter of principle or protest?

    JR: Richness, Fame Too Much For Leaf

    JReighley: Leaf is no different than anyone else. Watch “True Hollywood Story” sometime. It always follows the exact same plot line as Leaf. Some fall faster than others. The troubling thing is that people are so quick to judge him, categorize him, and celebrate his fall. In doing so, in many cases they are exhibiting the same pride and arrogance that lead to his demise. Most of us would be jerks if we became rich and famous too. We would find that the top of the world sucks just as bad as the bottom

    Question: Would you be a jerk if you were rich & famous?

    Obama Gets Personal w/Fathers

    In this Aug. 12, 2008, file photo, then Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill. walks down Kailua Beach in Kailua, Hawaii, with his daughters Malia, 10, left, and Sasha, 7, during their vacation in Hawaii.  (AP Photo/Marco Garcia, File)

    Item: Obama to fathers: Be involved in your kids’ lives/AP

    More Info: Growing up without a father left a painful hole in his heart, President Barack Obama told boys at the White House Friday in a remarkably personal Father’s Day weekend message. He implored fathers everywhere — and the kids when they’re a bit older — to be involved in the lives of their own children.

    Question: Was your father involved in your life?

    BeerBQ Minus-1 Wild Card — 6.19.09

    Today is the 170th day of 2009. There are 195 days left in the year. On this day in history: In 1910, Father’s Day was celebrated for the first time, in Spokane, Wash. In 1964, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was approved by the Senate, 73-27. Actress Kathleen Turner is 55. Locally, Coeur d’Alene is observing Juneteenth for the first time here. In the news this evening: Barack Obama’s approval rating has slipped to 58% here. And the Wild Card is in play …

    Parting Shot — 6.19.09

    American actress Brittany Daniel gets a tattoo by famous Thai tattoo artist Ajarn Nu in Nonthaburi province, Thailand, today. (AP Photo)

    Question (for those of you with tattoos): Is the tattoo process as painful as it looks?

    Bent & Taryn’s BeerBQ Info

    Bent provides the following info and directions (see link) re: Bent & Taryn’s BeerBQ, which is scheduled from 3 to 8 p.m. Saturday @ Taryn’s home in Spirit Lake to officially launch her photography studio): “We have five BBQers fired up with fantastic FREE food. We will have free homebrew for those of legal age, and free soft drinks for everyone else. Plus Taryn is offering amazing discounts on portraits, so bring the family. Additional Info: We have plenty of food and supplies, but you may want to bring a lawn chair or two. The forecast looks pretty good, but we are prepared to deal with light showers if they occur and the fire pit will be blazing. So, don’t let the weather deter you.” More info and directions here.

    Question: Why are/aren’t you coming to Bent & Taryn’s BeerBQ tomorrow?

    PM Headlines — 6.19.09

    A woman suspected of stealing a car was killed when she wrecked the vehicle before dawn today in north Spokane. A man involved in the robbery is still missing, said the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office, which is investigating the fiery crash. Story here. (Mike Prager/SR)

    APhoto Of The Day — 6.19.09

    People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) activists sit with red painting on their body to protest against bullfighting at the Trocadero near the Eiffel tower, in Paris, Thursday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. Upon arriving in Heaven Ubdai was a little bit appalled to find that he gave up his life for a hundred opinionated women whose virginity was suspect, at best. “This is all we had left after the jihad,” the gateman explained — Brent Andrews. 
    • 2. Sixth sign left to right reads: Ive got tkts for bullfight - first row, near “Matadores bench” 1 800-ole chica — Pecky Cox.
    • 3. Drunk Parisians observe how PETA packed a pit with pickled peepers — JohnA.
    • HM: Cabbage Boy

    PM Scanner Traffic — 6.19.09

    • 4:35 p.m. Head-on collision on I-90 @ M/P 1 involves several cars and has blocked the e/b lanes. Reportedly, a w/b vehicle crossed the median into the e/b lanes. Traffic backed up into Washington. One person is being transported to hospital. Update (4:53 p.m.): ISP officer radios colleague that his services aren’t needed because the crash “isn’t as bad as it sounds” (although traffic is still blocked). Update 2 (5:09 p.m.): Traffic will reopen in e/b lane in 5 minutes or so).
    • 4:34 p.m. A 40-something woman who may have suffered a seizure is involved in a two-car accident in front of Windermere’s office on Prairie Avenue.
    • 4:03 p.m. 3 females and 2 males involved in an accident in the Petco/Wilbur Avenue parking lot are driving away. More below.

    HBlogos: More Than A Tummy Ache

    They got Adam all set up with an IV, which he was very curious about, and prepared him to go up to the operating room. Dad said a prayer with us and I was glad again that he was there. The surgeon came into the room and explained everything to us. (When the surgeon explained how they were going to remove his appendix, Adam looked at me and whispered, “But I like my appendix.” Typical Adam)/A Butterfly Moment. More here

    HBO Numbers (for Thursday, June 18): 7222/4223

    Question: Have you had your appendix removed?

    More Regulation, Please

    Great clouds of pollen fill the breeze
    and innocents now cough and sneeze;
    from tiny babe to world war vet,
    the throat is raw, the eye is wet.
    Enough, I say, it’s gone too far —
    this nation needs a Pollen Czar.

    The Bard of Sherman Avenue

    Vibrating Bed Inventor, 92, RIP

    This Aug. 9, 2007, file photo, shows John Joseph Houghtaling, inventor of the ” Magic Fingers Vibrating Bed” aboard his 51-foot yacht in Fort Pierce,Fla. Houghtaling died in Ft. Pierce, Fla. Wednesday. He was 92. Story here. ( AP Photo/Paul J. Milette, The Palm Beach Post)

    Question: What kind of bed do you own?

    DID: Shouldn’t Shut Sherman Yet

    Deaf In Downtown: It seems ludicrous that the City shut down what is essentially two blocks of Sherman Avenue three full days before the first Ironman finisher will cross the finish line. The work to do this took only a few hours. Why can’t this be done Saturday evening if it is so easy to do? And, why is it that, whoever decided to route all of Sherman’s traffic to Lakeside, has no responsibility to change the light sequencing or provide traffic cops/volunteers to offset the gridlock that resulted from the closure? This town puts on so many great events but the imposition on the local businesses and citizens in this case are beyond comprehension.

    Question: Do you agree/disagree with Deaf In Downtown that the city shuts Sherman Avenue down too long for Ironman Coeur d’Alene?

    What Happened To Ryan Leaf?

    Chosen second, behind Manning, in the 1998 NFL draft, the world belonged to Leaf every bit as much as it did Manning. But Manning succeeded and Leaf failed. Manning still is having one of the most prolific careers in NFL history. He’s still at the top of the game. Leaf arguably is the most colossal bust in his sport’s history. And now he’s at the bottom of his world. Some people will think this is a result of Leaf’s bad karma. At Washington State and in the NFL, he treated most people the same way — poorly. He was a jerk to many of his fellow WSU students. He had disdain for the sports writers who covered him, and he wasn’t a particularly good teammate in the NFL/Steve Kelley, Seattle Times. More here. A Seattle P-I column by Art Thiel re: Leaf here. About video below here.

    Question: Do you lament the fall of former WSU star QB Ryan Leaf?

    MT: But Can She Fix A Pothole?

    Give (Melissa Sue) Robinson credit for adding some lift to a slow news week. A “male-to-female post-op transgendered person,” Robinson says she will run for mayor of Nampa, one of Idaho’s more conservative communities. “I am running because I am progressive and I feel that Nampa is a city that needs progressive people in city government,” says Robinson, who lists among her accomplishments founding the National Association for the Advancement of Transgendered Persons at Lansing, Mich., and Equality Idaho. But the problem - as political historian Randy Stapilus noted - is Robinson’s message. Other than spreading tolerance for gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgendered people, she doesn’t have much to say about what kind of changes Nampa needs. Nor has she had much relevant experience either in Idaho or in city politics/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

    Question: What do you think of the mayoral candidacy in Nampa of “male-to-female post-op transgendered” Melissa Sue Robinson?

    Spokane Asks To Dismiss Zehm Case

    Item: City asks to dismiss Zehm case: Zehm’s actions cause of death, court papers claim/Jim Camden, SR

    More Info: The City of Spokane asked a federal court Friday to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the family of Otto Zehm over his death in police custody in March 2006, saying the developmentally disabled janitor, not police, is responsible for his own death. In a response to the federal civil rights suit filed by his mother, Ann Zehm, assistant city attorney Rocco Treppeidi and Carl Oreskovich, a private attorney under contract to the city who also represents one of the officers involved in the case, argue that police acted properly in the north Spokane Zip Trip on the night of March 18, 2006.

    Related: Otto Zehm died for our sins/Community Comment

    Question: Do you believe, as the city of Spokane maintains, that city police acted responsibly and that developmentally disabled janitor Otto Zehm was responsible for his own death?

    HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.19.09

    This June 11 photo shows two kit foxes lounging on the steps of the old Pahaska lodge in North Fork, Wyo. (AP Photo/The Powell Tribune, John Wet)

    High Noon: Annulment Dream

    In the waking world, Eileen and I separated in 1981, divorced in ‘82, and our marriage was annulled by the Roman Catholic Church in 1984, making it possible for Eileen, a new convert to Catholicism, and her Roman Catholic fiancee to marry one another. This all happened twenty-five years ago. These events tore me up. I’ve never fully recovered, never fully healed, never really forgiven myself for being the man I am, a man Eileen could no longer endure as a husband, a man she never wanted to speak to or hear from again. It’s all here in this dream/Raymond Pert, Kellogg Bloggin’. More here.

    Question: Are you still carrying around the scars of a previous marriage?

    HBO Poll: PETA’s Impact

    The president has been getting lots of kudos for a lightning-fast, Mr. Miyagi-worthy swipe he employed to slay a pesky house fly that was buzzing him in mid-interview during a taping with CNBC that aired Wednesday. But now People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, calling it an “execution,” wants the commander-in-chief to show a little more compassion to even “the least sympathetic animals”/Reuters. More here.

    • Statesman Poll (Thursday PM): 24 of 31 support Chinese town’s one-dog, one-family policy here
    • HBO Poll (Thursday): 44 of 71 (62%) plan to stay home until Ironman CdA is over Sunday. Only 18 of 71 (25%) are going to participate in some way here.

    My 2 Cents: An Old Familiar Face

    As I biked home Wednesday, I saw a familiar face with his wife of 59 years, walking slowly along torn-up 4th Street @ Garden, in front of the old SR bureau: Bob Hough. For years, Bob was the voice of KVNI (before “newcomer” Dick Haugen replaced him in the early 1990s). Before that, he was a DJ in the 1950s-60s, known as “Bubblehead Bob.” Now, he’s a proud grandfather, enjoying the success of two grandkids who have made their mark transforming stars into dancers in the “Dancing with the Stars” competition: Derek and Julianne Hough. Bob believed as many other viewers did that grandson Derek and Lil’ Kim should have finished ahead of “that cowboy” — rodeo cowboy Ty Murray — in the most recent season. “It’s all rigged,” Bob said when I stopped to chat. The Houghs were walking toward the 4th Street house a block away that was built by Mrs. Hough’s father. More below.

    AM Scanner Traffic — 6.19.09

    • 11:09 a.m. Officers are calling for a medical evaluation of a 16YO girl on Meadowbrook Loop/Rathdrum who’s in custody, suffering from alcohol- or drug-related problems.
    • 10:54 a.m. R/Ps report a two-vehicle crash b/n a gray p/u and a Jeep that might have been head-on @ Garwood & old Highway 95. Some callers say the p/u rolled several times. But one R/P reported that the crash was a rear-end one.
    • 10:15 a.m. 71YO male in the Avondale area has accidentally taken an overdose of pills by taking his night-time medication this morning.
    • 9:44 a.m. Officer reports that the “suspicious” object lying by the side of English Point Road is a “very deceased deer.” He wants someone called to pick it up.
    • 9:17 a.m. Silver Valley ISP officer is trying to stop a Washington vehicle traveling w/b on I-90 @ speeds over 100 mph.
    • 8:12 a.m. Firefighters investigate a fire alarm at a three-story North Idaho College dorm and discover the alarm is malfunctioning.

    ITD: Highway 95 Bottleneck ‘Stupidity’

    Item: Garwood-to-Sagle freeway comes with a bottleneck: Two-lane portion at end would stretch two miles/Betsy Russell, SR

    More Info: The Idaho Transportation Board on Thursday reviewed an Idaho attorney general’s opinion that found that the board can’t adjust the project’s southern boundary without specific authorization from the Legislature. State Rep. Frank Henderson, R-Post Falls, proposed such legislation this year, but it died in an end-of-session tiff between the House and the Senate. “This is something we really messed up on and the Legislature messed up on,” said ITD board member Bruce Sweeney, “and we need to resurrect this. … It’s just stupidity, is what it is.”

    Question: Who’s to blame for a ‘stupidity’ that leaves a two-mile stretch of Highway 95 as a two-lane road: the Legislature only, District 3 reps only, or both?

    Naked Hikers To Take To Hills

    Sunday, the first day of summer, is getting increasingly crowded with events: Father’s Day, Ironman Coeur d’Alene, and Naked Hiking Day. Above, Andrew Williams poses without his shirt behind his backpack at a park near his home in Warren, Pa., Thursday. Williams plans to participate in Naked Hiking Day, on Sunday, an annual event celebrated on the first day of summer by a relatively few enthusiasts. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

    Question: Would your day in the woods be ruined if you met someone like Andrew Williams hiking naked through them?

    ML: PETA Provides Food For Thought

    I’m rethinking this morning how I treat all living beings, and I’m gonna have to repent for some very recent infractions of the rules. Why just yesterday I took one of those cans (2 for $7) of deadly wasp/hornet spray and assaulted all the little nests that have started forming in the horse trailer. My intention was to spare Miss Lily from having to get stung several dozen times during the trailer ride over to my sisters’ place. Little did I consider that I was a murderer and that should this act become as public as the President’s recent fly smacking incident, I might have had naked people show up and start lying in my driveway to prevent me from taking my horse for a ride/Marianne Love, Slight Detour. More here.

    Question: Marianne, of course, is being facetious re: her thoughts re: PETA. How about you? Have PETA’s off-the-wall stunts caused you to reconsider how you treat animals, including flies?

    BS: Oh Bother

    It’s 7 a.m., time for another who-am-I-kidding hour at the local gym. I don’t know why I bother. This isn’t fun. I’ve been working out for 30 years and have yet to see a single abdominal muscle. It seems pointless anymore. The padding around my middle may outlive me by decades. It isn’t fat, but some new form of matter, as indestructible as fruitcake. If I could patent it, it would make my fortune. They could use it to pave our crumbling highways or cap nuclear waste dumps. But I’m here now, trying to work up some enthusiasm for a healthy lifestyle. It isn’t going well. I’m wearing the new running shoes I bought the other day. (The sales girl was very kind; she didn’t laugh or roll her eyes.) They’re comfortable shoes, only now that I think of it, I hate running. My body feels like old roadkill. I’m losing faith that every day, in every way, I’m getting better and better/Bill Spence, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

    Question: With all the super-fit athletes swimming, biking, and running to prepare for Sunday’s Ironman, do you feel intimidated? Or do you agree with Pooh’s assessment: Oh bother?

    AM Headlines — 6.19.09

    Cyclists enjoy the boardwalk and the view of the North Channel Dam at Falls Park on the Spokane River at Post Falls. The park will get a significant facelift as a part of Avista’s application for a new 50-year license of it’s Spokane River Dams including new interpretive panels and trail improvements. Becky Kramer story here. (J. Bart Rayniak/SR)

    Idaho Records/Sherry Adkins, SR

    BB: Can’t Kids Have Fun W/O SOS?

    Bayview Bob (re: Deputies check out Hauser Lake SOS): It makes me wonder about people these days, when they can’t see kids enjoying life without thinking it is a crisis. Where did they come from where they would think kids sitting on a log was a emergency? On the other hand they were concerned, so that is a plus I guess.

    Question: Do you think the concerned citizen over-reacted when s/he saw the three boys sitting on a log in the middle of Hauser Lake? Are people too quick to call the cops today?

    OTV: Perky Katie Isn’t Evil

    OrangeTV: I have no opinion on Glen Beck, never watched him. What I was referring to was how out there one must be to think that Katie Couric and Brian Williams were somehow not trustworthy, when in reality they’re just talking heads, not particularly opinionated, just report the news as far as I can tell. How could anyone see perky little Katie as somehow evil, I dunno.

    Question: Which Spokane talking head do you think is the sharpest?

    Scootermom: RMOysters Repel Men

    Scootermom: The only time I ate Rocky Mountain Oysters was when my girlfriends and I were studying for the bar, at the bar, and kept being approached by annoying men. We ordered some Oysters, and they magically left us alone. Man repellent. Very effective.

    Question: In the day, how did you chase away annoying members of the opposite sex?

    Heller: Iranian Info Blackout?

    Joe Heller/Hellertoons

    Parting Shot — 6.18.09

    This undated photo provided by PETA shows Lydia Guevara posing on the set of her PETA photo shoot. The granddaughter of Cuban revolutionary leader Ernesto “Che” Guevara is the face of a new PETA campaign touting “the vegetarian revolution.” PETA spokesman Michael McGraw says the campaign will debut in Argentina in October and will be seen internationally. It’s PETA’s first vegetarianism campaign in South America. (AP Photo/PETA)

    Waterloo Wild Card — 6.18.09

    Today is the 169th day of 2009. There are 196 days left in the year. On this day in history: In 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte met his Waterloo as British and Prussian troops defeated the French in Belgium. In 1983, astronaut Sally K. Ride became America’s first woman in space as she and four colleagues blasted off aboard the space shuttle Challenger. In 1984, Alan Berg, a Denver radio talk show host, was shot to death outside his home by two white supremacists. Paul McCartney is 67. In the news this evening: A poll shows that only 6% of Jewish Israelis view the Obama administration as pro-Israel here. And the Waterloo Wild Card is in play …

    Katrina: ‘You going To Eat Your Tots?’

    At Notes on a Napkin, Katrina spells out 10 movie quotes that she and hubby Paul use in everyday conversation, including:

    • “Not the cow.  I just ate that cow!  Spasm!  Spasm!” All purpose announcement of indigestion.
    • “I’m sorry, I was whack.”  “I was whack.” Instantly deflates an argument and prevents it from escalating into something truly ugly.
    • “You gonna eat your tots?” Begging for food from someone else’s plate is a universal annoyance.  Being cute about it helps your chances.

    You can find the rest of Katrina’s list here.

    Question: Can you think of a movie quote or two that you or your family uses in everyday conversation?

    PM Headlines — 6.18.09

    “There’s no event more “North Idaho” than the annual Big Back-In Lawnmower Drags held every Father’s Day Sunday in Spirit Lake,” posts Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. “The population of this wild west town doubles on that day as every manner of lawn mower is souped up and piloted by a collection of down home dare devils right on Maine Street. Note: the streets of Spirit Lake are named after states.”

    APhoto Of The Day — 6.18.09

    Memorial Park Cemetery advertises a buy-one-get-one-free sale on cemetery plots in Indianapolis, Wednesday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. Enduring stiff competition, officials decide to undertake grave measures, just in the niche of time, even guaranteeing their sale, pledging “We’ll be the last ones to let you down” — JohnA.
    • 2. People are just dying for a good deal, it’s hard to pass up a twofer! — Charlie.
    • 3. President Obama unveils his cradle-to-grave national health care plan. “This will save taxpayers millions on end-of life expenses,” the president said — Aliasjax.
    • HM: Cis 

    PM Scanner Traffic — 6.18.09

    • 5 p.m. Heidi wants to redeem her dog.
    • 4:06 p.m. Driver who’d left small child in his car @ Hastings is now n/b on Govt Way.
    • 4:05 p.m. An 11YO girl in a pink top has been missing since 3 p.m. @ Silverwood. Update (4:20 p.m.): Child found.
    • 3:57 p.m. R/P reports that a young female teen in the KMC north lot is bleeding from several cuts. But CPD Blue is unable to locate.
    • 3:45 p.m. 43YO man is unconscious after attempting suicide by pills @ Ramsey & Laramie/Garwood area. Officers had looked for him earlier today.
    • Much more below

    Deputies Check Out Hauser Lake SOS

    Frum Helen Back/Hauser Thoughts grabbed her camera and headed around Hauser Lake to get a firsthand account of today’s search for 3 teens who initially were reported clinging to a boat in the middle of the lake. The boys, 19-year-old Zachary Castro a two, 16-year-old youths from Post Falls and Hauser, had pushed a log into the middle of the lake and sat on it for awhile. Marine deputies searched for the three until they were located. KCSD news release here.

    MM: 10 Things I Will NOT Eat

    1. guacamole
    2. peas
    3. shrimp
    4. lamb
    5. cantaloupe
    6. clams
    7. asparagus
    8. green beans
    9. coffee
    10. deviled eggs

    Midnight Marauder

    Question: I’ll eat 9 of 10 things on Midnight Marauder’s list (not sure re: clams). But I won’t touch liver. No where. No way. What is a food you absolutely will not eat?

    Tri-Cities, Yakima Good For Re-Start

    With this country still locked in a deep recession, Yahoo! searched for the best places to start over. Afterward, it identified a top five, beginning with Anchorage, Alaska, where 28 percent of the companies in town plan to hire in the next quarter. Provo-Orem, Utah, was second, and Omaha, Neb.-Council Bluffs, Iowa, was fifth. Yahoo!’s picks for third and fourth were a surprise: 3. Kennewick-Pasco-Richland, Wash., where the average home price is $133,134 and 24% of the companies are looking to hire next quarter, and 4. Yakima, Wash., where the average home price is $125,234 and 24% of the companies plan to hire in the third quarter/ More here.

    Question: If you had to start over, would you pick the Tri-Cities or Yakima in Washington? If not, where would you pick?

    HBlogos: Juneteenth Flyers Appear

    “(Juneteenth) is the first event of it’s kind in North Idaho and I encourage you to give it your full support, fair reader,” posts OrangeTV/Get Out! North Idaho, of the flyer above. “Sounds like a fun day for kids of all ages, shapes and inclinations. Bonus: you can also watch Ironman mania unfold and take control of the city park and downtown.” More here.

    HBO Numbers (for Wednesday, June 17): 7684/4459

    San Diego 4, Seattle 3 (10 innings)

    Seattle Mariners’ Mike Carp is congratulated in the dugout after scoring in the first inning on a double by Ken Griffey Jr.during an interleague baseball game against the San Diego Padres, Thursday in San Diego. The Padres won 4-3 in 10 innings. Running boxscore here. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)

    Statesman: One Dog Per Family?

    Residents in a Chinese city are trying to come to grips with a strict regulation on dog ownership that’s set to take effect soon. Starting July first, families will only be allowed to own one dog — even if they currently own more than one. It’s prompting many to protest what they consider a cruel regulation. It appears to be aimed at controling the population of stray dogs in the city of Guangzhou, once known as Canton. Guangzhou is also preparing to host the Asian Games next year, and the feeling among officials is that fewer dogs means cleaner sidewalks. More here.

    Indian Country Protests Custer Toy

    Custer rides again, although he’s atop a plastic motorcycle and in a McDonald’s Happy Meal box. And that doesn’t sit well with some in the Native American community. Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer was killed in 1876 along the Little Big Horn River by Native Americans he aimed to destroy. But Hollywood brought him back to life as a character in the Ben Stiller comedy “Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian,” which opened in theaters May 22. McDonald’s included characters from the movie as toys in its kid-sized Happy Meals. The fast food chain’s decision to circulate the toy in Indian Country is akin to circulating a Hitler figure in Israel, according to Laurette Pourier, executive director for the Society for the Advancement of Native Interests-Today. “It’s insensitive and disrespectful”/Jeremy Fugleberg & Andrea Cook, Rapid City Journal. More here.

    Question: Is this an example of political correctness? Or a legitimate beef?

    Bozeman Demands Private Passwords

    Item: City of Bozeman demands passwords from job applicants: Aside from the privacy aspects, such requests also violate the terms of service of social networking sites/Sharon Fisher, New West.

    More Info: Raising privacy and civil liberties issues, job applicants to the city of Bozeman are not only required to list all their social media accounts, but their passwords as well. “Please list any and all, current personal or business websites, web pages or memberships on any Internet-based chat rooms, social clubs or forums, to include, but not limited to: Facebook, Google, Yahoo,, MySpace, etc.,” the City form states. The application shows a space for passwords.

    Question: Would you provide your password to your social media account(s) for a job?

    HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.18.09

    An eagle sign welcomes visitors at the entrance to downtown Libby, Mont., Wednesday. The Environmental Protection Agency for the first time has determined there is a public health emergency in a contaminated community, targeting the Montana town for immediate federal attention. The Obama administration plans to pump $130M into Libby to address the public health emergency. Daily Inter Lake story here. (AP Photo/Rick Sheremeta)

    High Noon: Shouting Match

    A tenant came down yesterday evening at dinner time to yell at Dave because he told him that five cars were too many for two people. Two of them didn’t work, so the guy bought two more working ones. I explained to the man that I’m the one who sent Dave to talk to him and if he didn’t like it then he could move. He agreed to move but the yelling match continued and Dave was yelling right back. Yikes. I don’t like it when things like this happen. So I sent them outside to yell at each other. They continued yelling and Dave didn’t come in when I told him to just come in a eat dinner since the tenant said he was moving. I finally just closed the door and started eating the fried chicken dinner I cooked without burning anything/Frum Helen Back, Hauser Thoughts. More here.

    Question: When did you last get in a shouting match with someone who wasn’t a member of your family?

    25 Years Later: Alan Berg’s Murder

    This 1978 photo shows Denver talk-radio icon Alan Berg. It has been 25 years since Berg was gunned down in the driveway of his Congress Park condominium, and today’s commemoration comes just days after a white supremacist allegedly opened fire at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., killing a security guard. Berg was gunned down by Bruce Pierce of The Order, which formed in northeast Washington and was involved in a number of other violent crimes. Getaway driver David Lane, who later joined the Aryan Nations, was the getaway driver. More here. (AP Photo/Denver Post, file)

    Question: Are white supremacists as organized and deadly today as they were 25 years ago? Or are their acts of violence more infrequent and isolated?

    Idaho Blogosphere — 6.18.09

    In response Wyoming Republican Cynthia Lummis urged Minnick to take a leading role in management of our nation’s forests. “President Obama has appointed a number of czar-type positions,” Lummis said, “And I would encourage President Obama to make Representative Minnick the ‘forest czar’ to address bark beetle issues”/Rocky Barker, Idaho Statesman. More here.

    Question: Has your view of Democrat Walt Minnick changed since he took office?

    AM Scanner Traffic — 6.18.09

    • 11:54 a.m. Wrong-way driver in black p/u e/b in w/b lanes of I90 @ M/P 11 (4th Street).
    • 11:39 a.m. Black pitbull keeps running onto county airport property, creating a hazard.
    • 10:52 a.m. Brown-and-white collie mix is loose in the median @ H95 & Wyoming.
    • 10:50 a.m. EMTs are performing CPR on a 63YO diabetic on Stagecoach/Post Falls who went into seizure and is not breathing.
    • 10:33 a.m. R/P reports that three boaters are sitting on a capsized boat — or log — in the middle of Hauser Lake. No other boats are on the lake. Marine deputies are en route. Update (10:55 a.m.): Witness tells officers that there is no SOS situation. 3 young boys pushed a log a half mile out into lake. Update 2 (11:11 a.m.): Rescuers have found the log but not the boys. They’re searching for them along the shoreline. Update 3 (11:40 a.m.): Boys found. Everything is OK.
    • 10:24 a.m. Bridget is looking for her black Newfoundland on Miller/Athol.
    • 9:47 a.m. An aggressive pitbull has been running loose in and around a Spirit Lake park for four days.
    • 9:35 a.m. Man on Kelly Rae Drive/Hayden is threatening to kill himself by taking pills.
    • 8:16 a.m. A moose may be involved in a two-car crash on H95, four miles north of the Bonner Mall/Ponderay. Unknown injuries.
    • 8:45 a.m. A man in a 1975 pickup is securing his load @ M/P 11 (4th Street/CdA) after dropping wood all over the interstate.

    Sisyphus: Don’t Stop For Signs

    The (Idaho Statesman) did a front page article on the safe interaction of cyclists and motorists after three recent cyclist deaths in Boise from traffic accidents. They juice up the story by interviewing gold medal winner Kristen Armstrong. Its great that the Statesman sees the significance of highlighting this area of concern, its just too bad they wait till people died to emphasize the point. Its good Kristin is able to parley her great personal racing accomplishment into some well deserved recognition. But I strongly disagree with some of her advice to cyclists in the Treasure Valley:

    Stop at stop signs and lights. Idaho law allows you to go through. But motorists get antsy as they watch you go keep going while they cool their heels.

    Rest of Sisyphus/43rd State Blues post here

    Question: Did you know that bicyclists are not required to stop at stop signs? Should they be?

    Great-Grandmothers Take State

    Emma Dausman, 86, left, and Judy Conner, 69, pose at Clique Bowling Lanes in Grand Rapids, Mich. The two great-grandmothers won the Division 2 Women’s Doubles state bowling championship in May at a tournament in the Bay City area. (AP Photo/The Grand Rapids Press, Lance Wynn)

    Question: I quit bowling several years ago when I averaged 159 for the second year in a row. I figured I wasn’t getting any better. So why keep trying. How about you? Do you bowl well enough to beat a great-grandmother?

    SR Poll: What To Do @ Ironman

    PC: Hiking Minimum Wage Will Hurt

    Item: Crabb: Boosting the minimum wage next month will hurt, not help/Northwest Nazarene University.

    More Info: In July, the federal minimum wage will to increase to $7.25 per hour from the current $6.55, a 10.6 percent increase. This change in the law was enacted in the spring 2007 when the economy was strong, growing in real terms at a 4.7 percent annual rate with unemployment at only 4.5 percent. The most recent reports say the economy today is declining in real terms at a 5.7 percent annual rate with unemployment at 9.4 percent. Furthermore, the national jobless rate for teenagers today is 22.7 percent. It is just these teenagers who will find it more difficult to land a job when employers must increase their base rate of pay more than 10 percent.

    Question: Will the increase in the federal minimum wage from $6.55 to $7.25 help or hurt this country?

    Boise Pride Lets Gay Foe Into Parade

    Item: Leader of Boise gay-pride group tells why he’s letting foe of homosexuality into parade/Aimee Niles, Idaho Statesman

    More Info: The leader of a Boise gay group explained Wednesday why he is letting an evangelical Christian who opposes homosexuality into the parade this Saturday in Downtown Boise. Boise Pride does not restrict who participates in the Pride Parade, Brian Weatherhead, president of Boise Pride, told the Idaho Statesman. Tom Munds, a member of Middleton’s Canyon Springs Christian Church, said Tuesday that he will walk in the parade distributing water bottles with a Bible verse on the label and spreading his message of God’s love, including the belief that homosexuality is a sin.

    Question: What would you have done if you were the leader of Boise Pride?

    AM Headlines — 6.18.09

    For 15 years the North Idaho College Foundation has funded scholarships, updated technology and programs at the college through the Really Big Raffle of a new house, posts Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. There are only 5,000 $100 tickets sold. So if you’d like to own a bit of paradise in North Idaho (Post Falls to be exact) make sure to get your ticket right away. This raffle has sold out every year and the drawing will be held on July 8. Take a virtual tour HERE. Or log onto the NIC website HERE.

    Chatterbox: Feeling Chipper

    Chatterbox: Thanks, Stickman. I had another chemo treatment last Thursday. I am half way thru chemo, but still have another surgery and radiation to go. This round took a little more out of me, as will the next 3, I’m guessing. But, I’m heading into work today and feel pretty chipper. Guess this isn’t really the forum for this topic, so please accept my apologies.

    DFO: No need to apologize, Chatterbox. Many here are concerned re: your health struggles. I appreciate your candor in sharing about them. If you’re up to it, I’d enjoy seeing you at Bent & Taryn’s BeerBQ on Saturday.

    Bent: CdA Charter School Tops

    Bent: I am an unabashed supporter of the Cd’A Charter Academy. I have graduated three excellently educated children from that school, and I have one more who would have nothing else but to graduate with honors from the CCA.

    Question: Do you agree/disagree w/Bent re: the quality of the Coeur d’Alene Charter Academy?

    Digger: Stopped But No Ticket

    Digger:  was en route back from Ellensburg last night on Highway 26 (you know, the 150 miles of NOTHINGness between Colfax and Vantage). Speed limit 65 - I was pushing 80. I got pulled over by a state trooper and the first thing I told him was “Yep. You got me.” He seemed kinda shocked and asked me to repeat and I told him just that “I know I was going over the speed limit and you caught me.” He ran my D/L and registration and didn’t give me a ticket, surprisingly. Just a very stern warning about driving the appropriate speed for the road - which was kinda funny because he didn’t say “speed limit.”

    Question: Have you ever been stopped for speeding and let go without a ticket?

    Heller: Universal Health Care?

    Joe Heller/Hellertoons

    Hump Day Wild Card — 6.17.09

    Today is the 168th day of 2009. There are 197 days left in the year. On this day in history: In 1972, President Richard M. Nixon‘s eventual downfall began with the arrest of five burglars inside Democratic national headquarters in Washington, D.C.’s Watergate complex. Singer Barry Manilow is 63. We’re celebrating National Wildlife Week. In the news today, a New York Times/CBS News poll shows a substantial majority of the public is uneasy with President Obama on key issues here. And now for your Watergate Wild Card …

    Parting Shot — 6.17.09

    Cirque Du Soleil employees walk on stilts in Orlando, Fla, on Tuesday. Cirque Du Soleil was trying to set a world record for stilt walking at the Orlando location as well as their other locations in Montreal, Las Vegas, New York, Brazil, China, Japan and Portugal as part of their 25th anniversary celebration. (AP Photo/Orlando Sentinel, Jacob Langston)

    OTV Offers Back Door Contest

    “I am a back door man,” Howlin’ Wolf first sang in 1961, and though he was singing about sneaking in the back door of his lover’s house while her husband was gone away, he could have been referring to the many wonderful exits that go completely unnoticed on the far sides of our local restaurants and lounges. Some are quite lovely. Others, meh. How experienced are you with the shadowy derriere’s of familiar Coeur d’Alene food and drink establishments? See how many you can guess!/OrangeTV, Get Out! North Idaho. More here.

    DFO: A local business is offering a $10 gift certificate to the individual who can guess which back doors are which among the 20 photos  shown at Get Out! North Idaho (link). Give it a try.

    JBelle: Monastic No Longer

    JBelle: I am going to try to relieve myself from separation; abandon my monastic instincts and practices for a few moments. A few soon moments. I will swim, swim!, in Lake Coeur d’Alene on my birthday, just as I did as a little kid. And recall and celebrate my American Red Cross swimming lessons on Lake Coeur d’Alene. And I will summarily throw caution to the wind and see if I can’t join people who are barbecuing and drinking beer before the year’s end. Gotta try it and dodge it no more. Full post here.

    Question: Dunno if this means we’ll see JBelle at Bent & Taryn’s BeerBQ Saturday. But I’m keeping my fingers crossed. Meanwhile, JBelle’s preference for seclusion makes me wonder: Are you an extrovert, introvert, or ambivert?

    APhoto Of The Day II — 6.17.09

    Let’s try again with the cutline contest: Sierra Rawson, 5, of Canton, Ill., drinks from a fountain at the Gateway Building on the riverfront in Peoria, Ill., on Tuesday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Peoria Journal Star, Ron Johnson)

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. Little Sierra gets a taste of Illinois’ version of Old Faceful — JohnA.
    • 2. Does the expression, “drinking from a firehose” hit yah? — Herb Huseland.
    • 3. Open your eyes little girl! there is a monster behind you!! — Pecky Cox.

    PM Scanner Traffic — 6.17.09

    • 5:27 p.m. Lights are malfunctioning @ Northwest Boulevard & Seltice Way.
    • 5:06 p.m. Lights @ H95 & Orchard are flashing red as a result of lightning strike but no one is paying attention to them.
    • 5 p.m. Male trying to pull female out of white van near 7th & Elm/CdA.
    • 4:57 p.m. A motorist may be trapped in a gray pickup that hit a tree on Hayden Lake Road/MP 17 (near Silver Springs Road). Update (5:11 p.m.) Man is penned by leg in vehicle. Update 2 (6:02 p.m.): Med-Star helicopter has launched to transport accident victim. Who is still penned in his pickup.
    • 4:40 p.m. 17YO male is in PFPD Blue lobby after being shot by an aerosol pistol in the chest and groin.
    • 4:08 p.m. Arena Loop/Hayden resident reports boys are riding dirt bikes across his yard.
    • 4:05 p.m. Run vehicle in hit-and-run at nearby Safeway’s reportedly enters Tamarack RV Park.
    • 3:35 p.m. Woman reports ex-husband has locked her out of their mutual residence on Chester & Elwood/Harrison.
    • More below

    HBO Blogosphere — 6.17.09

    Idaho Dad tells you about this Farragut State Park photo in his Wordless Wednesday post today on A Family Runs Through It here.

    Phaedrus Battles Press Sockpuppets

    Looks like our colleague Phaedrus is taking on Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary and assortment of the Gookin & Co. sockpuppets at the Press site. Here he responds to a slap by Mary at Councilman Mike Kennedy’s family: “Mary, Mary, Mary, there you go again! I watched last night’s proceedings and witnessed Mr. Kennedy make a very clear and full disclosure, for you to imply in your signature, underhanded and rumor-mongering way that he did anything less is despicable and all too typical of your style. Second, I think you have set a new low in unethical behavior (even going lower than David Letterman’s treatment of Sarah Palin’s daughter) by mentioning Mr. Kennedy’s wife and family. It is one thing to disagree with one of your elected officials, it is quite another vile and disgusting tactic to invoke their family in your attack.” You can read the whole thread here.

    My 2 Cents: Constituents? C’mon

    Seems Coeur d’Alene Press reporter Tom Hasslinger cornered Councilman Mike Kennedy after the council hearing last night re: the commercial rezone request from North Idaho College and challenged (paraphrase): “When are you going to quit bickering with constituents?” Hasslinger was referring to Kennedy’s exchange with Dan Gookin, a so-called community “watchdog” — Hasslinger’s term not mine. Seems Hasslinger has a loose interpretation of the word constituents. Gookin’s a nag with a political agenda to get elected to the City Council and try to gum up the progress that’s breaking out all over town. Gookin, sidekick Mary Souza & Co. have repeatedly attacked Mayor Sandi Bloem, Kennedy and council, and North Idaho College via their Web site and the Coeur d’Alene Press, their media bedfellow. They’re hardly your ordinary constituency. Kennedy deserves points for being civil at all to this crowd. Furthermore, Hasslinger gave the impression that “many residents” expressed concern re: the rezoning, when only about a half dozen did Tuesday night — and three of those were: Gookin, Souza and another sidekick, Susie Snedaker. But I can’t blame Hasslinger for the shallow reporting. A good editor would have broken him of the lapdogism by now. Oh wait.

    What Happened To … Hagengruber?

    Many of you were fans of Jim Hagengruber (shown at left of former photographer Brian Plonka on a C-130 en route to Baghdad to interview Hauser’s Tripp twins in May 2008), the stellar former SR environmental reporter who was laid off with about half the CdA newsroom on Nov. 1, 2007. You know who went to work for the Christian Science Monitor. Now, as of yesterday, he’s going to work for President Barack Obama — as a diplomat. I’ll let him tell you about it: “I accepted an offer to become a diplomat for the US State Department. My training begins Aug. 3 in Washington, D.C. Getting to this point took a lot of work and I should be excited. Mostly, though, I’m thinking about my past 12 years as a journalist.” More here.

    NIC Trustee Explains Reason For C-17

    This project will take many years to unfold, and that is why the C-17 was requested, so as for future elected boards to have latitude in their decisions. Remember, the Boards that will be making those decisions are elected by the residents of Kootenai Co. and thus will be representing their desires. There are no current plans for the property, but as a Board we belived it very appropriate to acquire the land or risk the chance that it be devloped & lost forever. And one last fact is that there will be numerous opportunities for public input concerning the future of this property/Mic Armon. Full HBO comment below.

    Eddie Bauer Files For Bankruptcy

    A shopper clutches a bag after leaving an Eddie Bauer store Wednesday in Seattle. Struggling mall retailer Eddie Bauer Holdings Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Wednesday but said a bidder already has agreed to keep the majority of its 371 stores open, honor gift cards and hold onto most employees. Story here. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

    Question: What did you last purchase at an Eddie Bauer store?

    SC: Don’t Let Babies Scrape Pizzas

    The second week of my freshman year in college, I walked into Rico’s Pizza Palace near campus and asked for a part-time job. Rico - who was Greek, not Italian, and roughly as wide as he was tall - looked me up and down and said, “You ever make pizza before?” “Yes, sir!” I replied. “Chef Boyardee from the box!” And so it came to pass that I became a pizza assistant. The job involved emptying a lot of garbage cans, washing a lot of dishes, stacking a lot of glasses, and - at the end of the day - standing on a step ladder and scraping pizza dough off the low ceiling in the kitchen/Steve Crump, Twin Falls Times-News. More here.

    Question: Have you ever worked in a pizza joint? Tell us about it.

    Sisyphus: Minuteman Murders

    The Minuteman movement is a loose affiliation of xenophobic border vigilantes exasperated with America’s immigration policies. They are the darlings of the right wing noise machine who liken their activities to the country’s neighborhood watch. However, David Neiwert has been warning of the Minutemen’s extremist tendencies and is very sorry that his predictions are coming true. On May 30 a home invasion occurred in Arizona where the Hispanic resident and his nine year old daughter were murdered. Arrested are three members of one of the Minuteman chapters. The accused trigger man is Jason Eugene Bush (cause all murderers must have middle names) who is also accused of a murder of a “Mexican” in Wenatchee, Washington where he also had ties to the Aryan Nations based out of North Idaho/Sisyphus, 43rd State Blues. More here.

    Question: Do you view the Minuteman movement as benign? Or vigilante in scope?

    HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.17.09

    A grizzly bear chews on a chunk of elk in a meadow near Fishing Bridge in Yellowstone National Park last Thursday. (AP Photo/Powell Tribune, Toby Bonner)

    Noon: A Suspect By Another Name

    Meghann Cuniff: One pet peeve about these incident writeups - the description provided is NOT of the suspect, it’s of the robber - the actual culprit. No suspect has been named yet!

    Sgt. Christie Wood: It is my police training….in written reports we always refer to the person who committed the crime as the “suspect”. I have never used the word “culprit”. I will give it a try! We hope to have some video surveillance footage later today. I will get ahold of you.

    Question: What word should Sgt. Wood use instead of “suspect” in her press releases to describe an individual who has committed a crime but hasn’t been apprehended?

    In Our Idaho Delegation’s Words

    A new project that tracks word usage in the Congressional Record shows that the most-used word by our current senior senator, GOP Sen. Mike Crapo, in the past year was “energy,” followed by, in order, “Idahoans,” “stories,” and “prices.” For 2nd District GOP Rep. Mike Simpson, the top word was “Idaho,” followed by “research,” “account,” and “systems.” Does this tell us something of where their minds and efforts in Congress lie? The word sample is smaller for our two newest members of the delegation, but the top word for GOP Sen. Jim Risch is “guard,” followed by “equipment,” “billion” and “reserve.” For Democratic Rep. Walt Minnick, the top word was “Idaho,” followed by “water,” “community” and “honor”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here (see question below before looking).

    Question: Former Idaho reps Larry Craig and Bill Sali used the same word the most. Without looking at the Betsy’s link, can you guess what it was?

    AM Scanner Traffic — 6.17.09

    • 11:55 a.m. R/P reports heavy smoke coming from his detached garage @ 420 4th/PF.
    • 11:40 a.m. Injured animal @ 3225 13th/CdA.
    • 10:42 a.m. Anonymous woman reports 3 or 4 dogs without water are tied to trees on Nikoma, a half mile off Gray Eagle/Rathdrum.
    • 10:36 a.m. Joe reports that a friend took his personal property and has it locked in a car.
    • 10:33 a.m. Shane wants to speak to an officer re: theft of a radio from an Arrow Point work site.
    • 10:32 a.m. A frightened fawn is trapped with “no place to go” b/n I-90 & the adjoining embankment @ the 15th Street interchange.
    • 10:21 a.m. A resident @ Highway 53 & Idaho/Hauser reports a strange Subaru station wagon is parked in her driveway.
    • 10:10 a.m. Semi-tire debris is in the e/b lanes of I-90 @ M/P 5/Post Falls.
    • 8:40 a.m. A dark-green Dodge Ram p/u is parked on a curb, creating a safety hazard, on 12000 block of Cliffhouse Road/Hauser, b/n Chef in the Forest & old Rainbow Inn.

    MT: Why Spare Charter Schools?

    So why does Idaho continue to add six charter schools a year? Each represents a new layer of administration. Each drains an average of $1.3 million in state dollars from its host district. Sure, the traditional school system has fewer children to educate, but its costs don’t decline. You still need to hire a teacher whether her classroom has 24 or 23 students. Not surprisingly, some districts have found themselves raising supplemental property tax levies simply to maintain their programs after a charter school got launched in their back yards/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. More here. Also: Now’s not the time to create charter schools/Idaho Press Tribune

    Question: Should charter schools be spared/expanded at the expense of public schools?

    FDA Warns Consumers Re: Zicam

    Zicam Cold Remedy nasal gel is shown in Boston Tuesday. The Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday said consumers should stop using Zicam Cold Remedy nasal gel and related products because they can permanently damage the sense of smell. (AP Photo/Eric Shelton)

    Question: Do you use Zicam products?

    CW: Why Would NIC Sell Ed Corridor?

    Christie Wood (chairwoman of NIC trustee board): The mission of the college is education. We are not real estate developers. After decades of wishing we could acquire land continguous to the college and now it is finally happening, why on earth would we ever wish to sell it??? The rumors started by a small group were irresponsible. As we move forward with the long term vision of building a modern campus we will work with the community to determine what buildings and programs best fit the footprint of the land. I am grateful to the City Council for understanding the future needs of higher ed and voting for the annexation and zoning. Full comment below.

    DFO: I wonder if Gookin would now deny that he ever called Christie “Sgt. Cupcake” in print?

    Question: Are you concerned that North Idaho College would sell of pieces of the Education Corridor to commercial developers?

    Kennedy, Gookin Square Off

    When resident Dan Gookin — a recognized city watchdog — raised concerns about protecting the river access for future public green space, Kennedy insisted Gookin had championed for private development on that same stretch of land before. Gookin denied Kennedy’s claim. “You are so grandstanding right now,” Kennedy cut in. “That’s so false I can’t even tell you”/Tom Hasslinger, Press. Full story here.

    Question: Who’s right — Kennedy or Gookin? Has Gookin supported the concept of private development on the proposed Education Corridor? Which guy would win in a no-holds-barred cage match?

    Council OKs NIC Commercial Zone

    Item: Corridor rezoning approved: Developers can move in near college site/Tom Hasslinger, Press

    More Info: Many residents expressed their concern that giving a commercial zone next to the current residentially-zoned college campus would be giving the college — and any potential developer — a blank check for a project idea that has never passed the conceptual stage in more than two decades around the Lake City. But those concerns — rooted in a worry that NIC could sell pieces of the land off even if it maintains it won’t — seemed to be brushed aside by a council more in tune with relying on what the college has said it plans to do all along: That is, build a modern campus.

    Question: Do you think Gookin, Souza & Co. have a legitimate concern re: the commercial aspect of the future North Idaho College property? Or are simply stirring things up again?

    AM Headlines — 6.17.09

    “Ironman Coeur d’Alene will begin with the elite athletes spilling into Lake Coeur d’Alene en masse at 7 a.m. Sunday,” reports Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. “I love seeing the sea of humanity as nearly 2,000 wet-suited competitors flow like lava off of city beach into the water for their 2-mile swim. Amazing to think that many of them will not be crossing the finish line in downtown Coeur d’Alene for at least 12 hours from the time they hit the water for the swim leg. They will ride 112 miles on bicycles and then run a full 26.2 mile marathon before being declared Ironmen.”

    Robber Hits Zips, Shell Station

    The Coeur d’Alene Police Department provided this surveillance photo of the man who tried to rob Zips and took money from a Shell station till. Originally posted at 10:54 p.m. Tuesday

    The Coeur d’Alene Police Department is currently investigating the report of two robberies that occurred in the downtown area of Coeur d’Alene, of Zips on Sherman Avenue and the Shell Station on Northwest Boulevard. The robberies were in close proximity and within an hour and 10 minutes of each other. The suspect description is similar in both cases. It is as follows: A white male, 18 to 20 years of age, 6 ft. slender build, large nose, deep set eyes, possibly short blond hair, Black hoodie zip up sweatshirt with a light color design on the zipper, long black shorts, long white t-shirt with a colored circular design on the left breast area, black skater shoes with no socks. Detail of robberies below.

    D: No ‘Professional Courtesy’ For Me

    Dennis: Well Wheels, you can believe what ever you want. But I can speak from experience in agencies that I worked in and allied agencies that I was around, “Good ‘ol Boy” didn’t happen. Mind you,,, this is not Idaho I am referring too, young officers were taught early on that the were held to a higher standard and to “ALWAYS” assume that you are under the microscope. Individuals who liked to practice “Professional Courtesy” didn’t last very long and usually ended up working for “Sheriff BillyBob” at some podunk agency where ethics doesn’t seem to matter. (And I can think of a few in this area)

    Question: Do you believe traffic cops give other cops a break when they pull them over for traffic violations?

    Subpoena Seeks Online Readers’ IDs

    A Nevada newspaper says it has been served a federal grand jury subpoena seeking information about readers who posted comments on the paper’s Web site. The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported Tuesday that its editor, Thomas Mitchell, plans to fight the request, which the newspaper received after reporting on a federal tax fraud case against business owner Robert Kahre. The subpoena seeks the identities and personal information about people who posted comments on the story. The newspaper said prosecutors told the judge in the case that some comments hinted at acts of violence and the subpoena was issued out of concern for jurors’ safety/Associated Press. More info.

    Question: Would you quit commenting online, if you knew that your identity and related information could be obtained via subpoena or other legal maneuver?

    Ramirez: Health Care Reform?

    Michael Ramirez/Investor’s Business Daily

    Honest Abe Wild Card — 6.16.09

    Today is the 167th day of 2009. There are 198 days left in the year. On this day in history: In 1858, as he accepted the Illinois Republican Party’s nomination for U.S. Senate, Abraham Lincoln said the slavery issue had to be resolved, declaring, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” Boxer Roberto Duran is 58. Today is National Morticians Day. In the news today, the FDA says some Zicam cold remedies are risky here. And your Honest Abe Wild Card is in play …

    Parting Shot — 6.16.09

    A pair of red-tailed hawks are seen at the top of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building near the White House in Washington Tuesday. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

    About That One Speeding Ticket

    I empathize with new driver Wandee Katanaree, the 30YO CdA woman who drove into a house on 17th Street while practicing backing up. She’s older than most who learn to drive. But she was trying to be careful (although she now faces a fine of up to $300 for her efforts). I’ve only received one traffic ticket — for speeding — since I began driving 43 years ago. I still remember the night. I was an 18YO driving my new 1967 convertible Camaro on the highway for the first time at night — and had decided that no one was going to pass me. I’d just upgraded from a VW bug. Unfortunately, one of the vehicles behind me was a highway patrolman. I sped up as he drew closer, to prevent him from passing. Dumb idea.

    Question: Can you remember the first ticket you received for a vehicle moving violation?

    APhoto Of The Day — 6.16.09

    An Israeli man carries a life size plastic doll a beach party following the annual Gay Pride Parade in Tel Aviv, Israel, Friday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty)

    • 1. The new and improved multipurpose flotation device! — Charlie.

    • 2. Perez Hilton, was seen hoisting a life size plastic doll of Miss
      California, at the annual Gay Pride Parade in Tel Aviv, Israel, Friday — Kage Mann.

    • 3. A doll with with cellulitis! — Pecky Cox.

    • HM: Bayview Bob

    PM Scanner Traffic — 6.16.09

    • 5:48 p.m. A helmetless motorcyclist has crashed @ Coeur d’Alene Lake Drive & Yellowstone Trail, half mile west of Higgens Point. Unknown if he’s injured.
    • 5:39 p.m. Woman w/3 children can’t get male to leave Kimberly Lane/PF residence.
    • 5:03 p.m. Juveniles involved in loud party @ the Spirit Lake boat launch.
    • 3:36 p.m. A vehicle has hit a 12-13YO boy on a bike, near Corner Bar, 4th & Spruce. The boy is up and limping around.
    • 3:14 p.m. 8YO boy is playing w/a large knife @ Athol Skate Park.
    • 3:05 p.m. Smoke is coming from behind the cab of a semi stopped @ I90 & NW Blvd.
    • 3:03 p.m. R/P reports juvenile creating a hazard by trying to sell lemonade in the middle of Government Way & Miles/Hayden.
    • More below

    Learner Hits House While ‘Backing Up’

    Coeur d’Alene Police responded to 622 N. 17th St. at 10:46 am for the report of a vehicle that struck a residence. Officers contacted the driver of the vehicle Wandee Katanaree, 30, of Coeur d’Alene and determined she was uninjured. She was the only occupant of the vehicle, a 1999 B-4000 Mazda pickup. Wandee stated that she has her learners permit and was practicing backing up. She was on 17th Street when she accelerated instead of using the brake. Her vehicle struck the family room area of the residence located at 622 N.17th. No one was inside the residence at the time. The vehicle and the residence sustained extensive damage/Sgt. Christie Wood, Coeur d’Alene Police Department. More here.

    Ed Corridor On Council Agenda Tonite

    A Berry Picker reminds Huckleberries: “Any Merry Hucksters who are inclined to support the education corridor might like to know that the CdA City Council will take up NIC’s request to annex the Stimson Mill site tonight at 6. The college is proposing C17 zoning in order to preserve maximum flexibility; some familiar residents are expected to oppose it. Positive public comment would be a nice counter weight.”

    RM: Obama, Media Romance Scary

    Item: ABC turns programming over to Obama; News to be anchored from inside White House/Drudge Report

    Right Mind: There are people who said there is no bias in the media. Can you honestly imagine this ever happening for Bush? Or for any previous President for that matter? Not a chance. Yhe press used to be called “The 4th Estate of Government” because of their need to be independent from and report accurately on what government is doing. It’s very, very scary the romance that the mainstream media has developed with Obama.

    Question: Are the media too cozy with President Barack Obama?

    Michelle, 5th Graders Reap Harvest

    First lady Michelle Obama harvests vegetables with fifth graders from Bancroft Elementary School in the First Lady’s Garden that they planted in the garden on the South Lawn of The White House in Washington Tuesday.(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

    Question: Which fresh vegetable is your favorite?

    Spokane Blogosphere — 6.16.09

    As more couples wait a few years before having children, some are finding themselves caught between raising their own kids and caring for aging parents. These adults are among the 10 to 16 million Americans who belong to the Sandwich Generation – people in their 30s and 40s who are “sandwiched” between the needs of their young children and their elderly parents. Many are overwhelmed by this challenge, especially couples who work full-time. Even if the parent doesn’t live with you, it still takes time, energy and financial resources/Virginia de Leon, Are We There Yet?. More here.

    Are you part of the Sandwich Generation? What are your biggest challenges? Where do you go for support?

    Lew2nl: Breaking Down lie-lay

    Lew2nl: Those irregular verbs are confusing. The easiest way for the high school kids to catch on was to tell them that the verb ‘lay’ means to ‘put’ or ‘place’. (lay, laid, have laid, laying). “He laid the book on the table yesterday.” “Please lay the book on the table now.” ‘He is laying the book on the table at this time.” The verb ‘lie’ means to ‘rest’ or to be in a ‘reclining’ or resting position. (lie, lay, have lain, lying) “I’m going to lie on the couch.” ‘I lay on the couch earlier today.’ I have been lying on the couch too long; it seems as if I have lain here all day.’” Full comment below.

    Question: Are you good at grammar?

    MH: Leave No Child Inside

    As the parent of two girls I understand the challenges of finding the time to get outside as a family, but it has to be done. It’s easy to fall in the trap of structuring our kid’s lives to a fault, with too much parental supervision. How much time are we allowing our kids to explore the world they live , to jump in puddles, chase fish up a creek, or climb trees? Sometimes on hikes I become impatient with my oldest daughter because she is exploring something. “We’ve got things to do… let’s go!” I say. What more important things do we have to do then allowing our children to explore the world? Sports are great; they are good for the body and provide a mechanism for learning discipline, but they don’t provide the opportunity for our kids to discover and use their imagination/Matt Haag, River Journal. More here.

    Question: What do/did you do to encourage your children to go outside and explore the world around them?

    HBO Poll: Property Taxes

    I paid my property taxes for the first time by visiting the county treasurer’s office last month. Until December, my taxes had been part of my mortgage payment — and, therefore, paid by my mortgage company at the appropriate deadlines. I wrote out a check in December for the first-half taxes because I’d paid my house off earlier in the fall. It’s harder to pay property taxes in one lump sum from savings (even though I put money aside each month to do so). All of this is a reminder to you that property taxes are due Monday here.

    HBO’s Inland Northwest — 6.16.09

    Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor meets with Sen. Michael Crapo, R-Idaho, on Capitol Hill in Washington today. News release here. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

    ID: How To Lose Your Patients

    30 minutes later, my phone rings again. This time it’s the dental hygienist. The one with the wicked metal scraper that spent so much time digging away at the base of my teeth. She had just called to give me a stern lecture about the proper maintenance of middle-aged teeth and gums. And by “stern lecture” I mean “talk to me like a stupid little child with a mouthful of cavities.” I don’t need that at my age. I’m quite capable of taking care of myself, thank you very much. I do not need to be harangued about flossing and brushing. Now, if she had scolded me about the health of my kids’ teeth, I could understand her anger and condescension. Children’s teeth need to have special, and frequent, care from a dentist/Idaho Dad, A Family Runs Through It. More here.

    Question: Does your doctor/dentist/hygienist treat you like you’re a child?

    CJ: CdA Juneteenth Worries Blacks

    Calamity J: I have heard from a number of African American people in Spokane who would like to go to this celebration but are afraid to gather publicly in Coeur d’Alene. They cite the recent events at the DC Holocaust Museum as being a real cause for concern here. I would love to confidently tell them that their fears are unfounded. I plan to take my elementary-age children but I’m a little nervous too. I’m frustrated that our fear affects the choices we make STILL. In fact, I’m angry about it.

    Question: Is Calamity J expressing a legitimate concern re: the local Juneteenth celebration?

    Odd Things About Jobless Claim

    Two odd things emerged from the brief discussion this morning re: furlough benefits in the state of Idaho. First, the top unemployment benefit payout is $362 — or about $200 less than in Washington state. So Idahoans not only are paid far less in unemployment claims but we get to pay income tax, too. Whattadeal. Then, living in Coeur d’Alene instead of Spokane and Spokane Valley balances the scales. Secondly, you can’t use the furlough time to travel. Believe it or not, the great state of Idaho requires that you stay within two hours of home while collecting unemployment benefits. So I can’t combine my furlough with vacation time, for example, to take a whole month off, if I want to visit family more than two hours away. Even if you’re furloughed and planning to return to work in a week. All for $362. And they check up on you. I wonder which legislative genius came up with this crazy idea?

    Question: Have you ever had problems with an unemployment claim?

    Even Toy Guns Are Scary In Mideast

    A Palestinian boy reacts as youths frighten him by pointing their toy guns at him, in an alley in the West Bank refugee camp of Al-Amari in Ramallah Tuesday. (AP Photo/Muhammed Muheisen)