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Archive for February 2010

Weekend Wild Card — 2.27-28.10

Blogfest 2010 is over. We’re coming to the end of an exciting Winter Olympics this weekend. On the good side, however, February and winter is almost over. March Madness is just around the corner, beckoning to both the men’s and women’s basketball teams at Gonzaga. We still have a few more months to enjoy the various waterfronts throughout North Idaho pretty much with locals only before the tourists and visitors move in. I have some good topics for you below. But you can always start another thread by using this Wild Card …

Gonzaga Wins 10th Straight WCC Title

Gonzaga’s Robert Sacre gets a hand on the ball as San Francisco’s Perris Blackwell shoots during the second half of their NCAA college basketball game at the McCarthey Athletic Center in Spokane. Saturday. Sacre was called for a foul on this play. Gonzaga beat San Francisco 75-69.  (AP Photo/Rajah Bose)

John Day: Neo-Nazis, Go Home

Carlene Herburger, of Mount Vernon, Ore., holds a sign as she joins a group of local residents to protest the planned purchase of a  building to house the future Aryan Nations headquarters in John Day, Ore. on Friday. (AP Photo/The Bulletin, Pete Erickson)

In an odd twist of events, the Aryan Nations claims its being discriminated against as their public pronouncement of wanting to move the group from Athol, Idaho to John Day, Oregon has been met with an overwhelmingly negative response. So many people in fact turned out to a public meeting to protest the Aryan Nations looking into buying land in the John Day area that hundreds of people had to be turned away.Paul Mullet, the 36-year-old self-proclaimed leader of the Aryan Nations, says his group has gotten angry e-mails, phone calls and negative publicity from a planned moved to eastern Oregon and he says he doesn’t understand why.“I do have this one question to John Day itself. What did we do to anyone in that community?”/Tania Dall, KXLY. More here.

Question: Is white supremacist Mullet being discriminated against as a result of the backlash he’s facing ever before he follows through with plans to move to John Day, Ore.? Do you care?

Pregnant Coaches Guide Zag Women

There must be something in the water in the Gonzaga University Athletic Department. Two of the assistant coaches for the GU Women’s Basketball team are pregnant, making for an interesting season on the sidelines. Thursday night, the GU Women won the WCC Conference. When Lisa Mispley Fortier and Jodie Kaczor Berry celebrated the win, they were each celebrating for two. Kaczor Berry is halfway through her pregnancy, with a baby boy due in July. Mispley Fortier is much farther along; her child is due April 1st, two days before the Final Four. “It’s getting a little bit tougher to stand up in practice all day,” Lisa said. “I keep dropping my pen during games and I can’t pick it up!” The pregnancies are welcome news to the family-oriented, close-knit team. For Head Coach Kelly Graves, it’s a little extra estrogen in his already female-centric world/Melissa Luck, KXLY. More here.

Question (for the Ladies of HBO): What was the toughest job that you did while pregnant?

Twin Falls Seniors Busted For Poker

Older than most law breakers, a group of Twin Falls seniors muster little remorse for having played Texas Hold ’em. After all, their weekly games made them happy and shouldn’t be illegal, according to some area poker enthusiasts in their golden years. But police say nothing in the law permits Idahoans to gamble at any age. Earlier this month authorities went to the Twin Falls Senior Center and explained that weekly poker games there were illegal and had to end. About 20 seniors had played at the center for more than five years despite failing vision, fading memory and limited mobility, five of the seniors said on Friday. They enjoyed playing poker at the center and gave an estimated $400 to $500 to it per month. Each player would put in $20 to play, and the pot would be split among the top chip holders/Andrea Jackson, Twin Falls Times News. More here.

Question: Did the law do the right thing by shutting down the weekly poker game at the Twin Falls Senior Center?

Daily News: Bill Moos’ Salary Unsettling

There’s little doubt Bill Moos will do great things for Washington State University athletics. For what he’s being paid, he’d better. Moos’ name was first on the list for Cougar fans far and wide after former athletic director Jim Sterk unexpectedly departed for the same job at San Diego State - and for good reason. Moos has deep ties to Pullman and did wonders during a highly successful 12-year stint as athletic director at the University of Oregon. He’s experienced, affable and highly capable of turning WSU into one of the elite athletic institutions in the Pac-10 Conference, if not the entire country. But the timing couldn’t have been worse as far as his pay rate is concerned. Moos and President Elson S. Floyd negotiated a seven-year deal worth at least $455,000 per year - or roughly $150,000 more than Sterk was earning on an annual basis/Doug Bauer, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here. (AP photo/Dean Hare of Moos during press conference this week)

Question: Few would question that Washington State got an excellent new athletic director in Bill Moos. But should it be paying him $455,000 in such a bad economy when the college has been slashing its budget everywhere else?

MC: Tea Partier Hangs On Words Unfairly

Dianne Capps’ story should be a cautionary tale for all Tea Party activists. At the Asotin Tea party rally a couple of weeks ago, Capps made what she believed was a clever allusion to the movie “Lonesome Dove.” She laughingly said U.S. Sen. Patty Murray should be hung. It was clumsy, but no reasonable person seeing the video could seriously believe Capps was actually trying to incite a lynch mob. But that’s the impression that those who feel threatened by the Tea Party are trying to promote. If you have 10,000 Tea partiers at a demonstration and one person shows up with a sign that might be interpreted as racist, ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, MSNBC, the New York Times and the Washington Post will all highlight that one sign and use it to smear the entire movement. It’s not hard to imagine media-savvy leftists infiltrating a rally with just such a sign knowing full well the prominence it will be given. And so what happened to Dianne Capps should have been predictable/Michael Costello, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: What do you make of columnist Costello’s point that Dianne Capps of the Tea Party movement was victimized by her own clumsy words about U.S. Sen. Patty Murray?

Anderson: Health Care Chutes & Ladders

Nick Anderson/Houston Chronicle

CdA In Lead For 1st State Wrestling Title

The Coeur d’Alene wrestling team took a big step toward the first state title in school history Friday, racking up 142 points to take a commanding lead in the 5A team race.  The Vikings’ 21-point edge over Highland (121 points) is by far the largest margin of any of the four state tournaments being held at Holt Arena. Still, Coeur d’Alene coach Jeff Moffat won’t rest easy until he has the trophy in hand. “The kids wrestled really hard today, but it’s going to come down to the semifinals, probably,” Moffat said. “The tournament very well could be decided (Saturday) morning”/Greg Lee, SportsLink. More here.

Semanko: Allred Aide Should Quit

Let the politics begin. The chairman of the Idaho Republican Party is calling for the spokesman for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Keith Allred to resign his board position with a journalism organization. Shea Andersen, the spokesman for Allred, is a member of the board of the Southwest Idaho Chapter of the Idaho Press Club. “I find it ironic that the Southwest Chapter of the Idaho Press Club would allow a partisan campaign worker in Shea Anderson, Keith Allred’s campaign spokesman, to sit on their board,” said Norm Semanko, the chairman of the Idaho Republican Party/Brian Murphy, Idaho Statesman. More here

Question: Should Allred spokesman Keith Allred resign his post as a board member of the Southwest Idaho Chapter of the Idaho Press Club?

P.S. Hockey Players In Hot Water

Canada Haley Irwin, left, and Tessa Bonhomme, right, celebrate after Canada beat USA 2-0 to win the women’s gold medal ice hockey game at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia on Thursday. Story here. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)

Question: The Canadian women’s hockey team is in hot water for celebrating their gold-medal victory by drinking Canadian beer and champagne and smoking cigars on the ice. Do you see anything wrong with that?

TGIF Wild Card — 4.26.10

I’m losing my beauty sleep due to the Winter Olympics. I can’t seem to get enough of them. I’m enjoying the competitors from other countries almost as much as those from the U.S. That gold medal skate by Kim Ya-Nu of South Korea was spectacular. Ditto for Boisean Speedy Peterson’s aerials and the U.S. gold and silver in the Nordic combined. All this, and who can ever get enough of the curling? I haven’t had more than 6 hours sleep this week. But there’s always Saturday morning. Until then, I’ll play this Wild Card, so you can start your own threads …

PM Scanner Traffic — 4.26.10

  • 5:41 p.m. Metal cabinet drawers are lying on I-90 @ M/P 10 (near NW Blvd).
  • 5:39 p.m. A male is not breathing and w/o a pulse in 5300 block of Royal/CdA.
  • 5:31 p.m. Caller reports that smoke is coming from an abandoned building near Higgens Point, east of Coeur d’Alene.
  • 4:51 p.m. LeeAnn reports a Post Falls area barkeeper didn’t give back her change and credit card after she stopped for a drink.
  • 4:46 p.m. Charles reports that vehicles are parked in the mornings on Lone Mountain Road/Athol, blocking him from using the road.
  • 4:09 p.m. Treasure Towne on 5th/Post Falls has locked the doors so a female who is stuffing her purse w/items can’t get out.
  • 4:07 p.m. Male in a white Mustang is spinning brodies @ Dollar Tree Store on Neider.
  • 4:02 p.m. Heather in a gray Pontiac is arguing vehmently w/a former girlfriend in a gray Sundance over an old grievance at the Skate Plaza.
  • 3:59 p.m. Female in Hayden fears that her ex will try to break into her house after being fired today from a longtime job.
  • Much more below

PM Headlines — 4.26.10

This Sunday photo provided by the Blue Mountain Eagle via the East Oregonian shows protesters in John Day, Ore. A community hall in Eastern Oregon couldn’t hold all of the local residents who showed up today to voice concern that a swastika-wearing white supremacist might move himself and his followers to the town of John Day. In a session streamed live on the local newspaper’s Web site, one resident after the other was emphatic: The Aryan Nations was not welcome in their community. Earlier post on Huckleberries Online today here. (AP Photo/Blue Mountain Eagle, Angel Carpenter)

APhoto Of The Day — 4.26.10

Cuba City High School teacher Stacy Balbach reacts after getting hit in the face with a whipped cream pie during a pep rally at the school in Cuba City, Wis. Students came up with the idea of tossing pies to raise money for the relief effort in Haiti, after a devastating 7.0 earthquake rocked the country last month. Over $700 was raised. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Telegraph Herald, Jeremy Portje)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Told you not to squeeze that huge zit!!! — Pecky Cox.
  • 2. Make the next one banana cream please — Charlie
  • 3. (tie) The new edge in Spa solutions, called pie in face — Arch Druid, and:

    Gesundheit! — James Marks

SRO Crowd Rallies Against Aryans

Grant County residents turned out in force at a town hall meeting this morning to object to efforts by a white supremacist group calling itself the Aryan Nations to establish a new headquarters in John Day. “Never have I been to a community who reacted so quickly as you have to say no,” civil rights activist Tony Stewart, 68, of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, told the standing-room-only crowd of about 375 people at the Canyon City Community Hall, just south of John Day. At least 100 others were turned away because of fire regulations. An additional 300 watched a live Internet stream, said Scotta Callister, editor of John Day’s Blue Mountain Eagle weekly newspaper, which sponsored the meeting. A second meeting is planned for tonight.  ”It gave this community a chance to put a voice to its values,” Callister said. “That’s powerful”/Richard Cockle, Oregonian. More here(SR file photo/Jesse Tinsley shows Tony Stewart, background, and Norm Gissel in June 2002.)

Chief Allan Applauds AG Opinion

“The Attorney General’s opinion confirms what we knew from day one,” said Allan, “that many of the opposition’s arguments against HB500 were simply unfounded and based on misguided rhetoric.” Allan further stated, “this opinion puts to bed the “boogeyman” claims about this bill and will allow those in the legislature who have been hesitant because of the about this bill to now more confidently stand up for what is right- public safety for all Idahoans living on reservations.” Opposing groups have declared HB 500 violates the constitution by undermining the county sheriffs’ authority to enforce state laws in Idaho/Marc Stewart, Coeur d’Alene Indian Tribe. More here.

HBO Blogosphere — 2.26.10

“This white tail deer stood sentry Sunday in a field across from Black Rock Golf Course,” posts Councilwoman KerriT/OnLocation North Idaho. “As I drove away, several deer emerged from the cover of tall grass to the right.”

They Are The Champions, My Friend

No, this isn’t the U.S. hockey team that beat Canada 5-3 in the early rounds and now finds itself in the chase for the Winter Olympics gold medal. It’s the Coeur d’Alene Thunder Pee Wee hockey team that recently won the championship Sunday. The team has a “Bad News Bears” feel to it, according to hockey mom Jocelyn Stott, who provided this photo to Huckleberries Online. Jocelyn writes: “Not having an ice arena to play in for half of last season and all of this one really took a toll on these players and their families, but it didn’t stop them from bringing home gold medals at the Idaho State Amateur Hockey Championships.” KHQ will be filming the team at the KYRO Ice Arena later this afternoon for a newscast.

Benewah County Adopts Wolf Plan

Commissioners have adopted a wolf management policy for Benewah County. “It’s our county recommendations for wolf management,” said Rod Halvorsen of the Benewah County Natural Resource Advisory Committee, which introduced the plan. “It amends the current predator policy which is part of the natural resource plan for the county.” The policy passed by a vote of 2-0-1, with commissioners Jack Buell and Bud McCall voting in favor and Cristina Crawford abstaining. The document states that the Board of Commissioners both “recognizes that the existence of the wolf in Benewah County threatens the culture, heritage, customs, property, and lives of the people of the county and restricts their free use of their own real estate and public lands” and considers the wolves to “represent an economic and cultural emergency”/Chris D’Angelo, St. Maries Gazette-Record. More here.

Question: Do you believe wolves “represent an economic and cultural emergency,” as two of the Benewah County commissioners do?

KCSD IDs Campground Remains

The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department has been able to positively identify the remains of the man found east of Fernan Lake on Feb. 7. The remains of Melvin K. Skaggs, 51 were found in a sleeping bag in a tent on National Forest land east of the Fernan Rod and Gun Club Range. Time of death is believed to have been in August or September of 2008. Skaggs, who was identified through dental records, reportedly told people in the area that he was ill and wanted to die in the woods. According to the Kootenai County Coroner’s Office, cause of death is believed to be due to complications from diabetes. Skaggs next of kin were tracked down in Illinois. Final arrangements are pending with the family/Major Ben Wolfinger, Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department.

INW: Stalker Murders Tacoma Teacher

Ken and Cindy Paulson the father and step-mother of slain teacher Jennifer Paulson, walk away after talking to reporters today outside Birney Elementary School in Tacoma, Wash. where their daughter was fatally shot earlier in the morning. Authorities say the suspect in the shooting was later killed in a shootout with a Pierce County Sheriff’s deputy. Seattle Times story here. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Question (re: photo & story at top): Are domestic protection orders worth the paper they’re written on?

Simpson: Summit Was ‘Just For Show’

“Unfortunately, my fears about this summit were realized: rather than a substantive discussion about health care reform, the President’s summit was just for show. … It seems the Democrats were more interested in selling the American people the bills they have supported in the House and Senate rather than working together to accomplish health care reform that we can all agree on.” While Democrats have been trying to dub Republicans as the party of “no” when it comes to working on health care reform, the fact is the GOP has several reforms they have been touting for months. To learn more about these reforms, visit here/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Do you think health care reform is a dead issue after the continued deadlock that came out of the summit Thursday?

Zags Proudly Delivers 10-Pack

A decade back, the Gonzaga Bulldogs somehow managed to lose three basketball games in a February fortnight. Message board traffic did not crash servers up and down the coast. Alums were still able to show their faces at work. There was no run on brown paper bags to relieve yet another case of civic hyperventilation. Earth did not careen off its axis. It was Spokane B.C. – before conceit. But those three losses did cost the Bulldogs the regular-season championship of the West Coast Conference, by a narrow game to Pepperdine – which goes to show just how long ago it was, that the Waves were the rival of the moment. This was a minor deal at the time, as it denied Gonzaga a third straight title. It remained a minor deal – very minor – Thursday night, when the Zags undressed Santa Clara 88-51 to complete their 10-pack – 10 straight WCC banners, shared or outright. Ten/John Blanchette, SR. More here. (AP photo/Rajah Bose; Gonzaga Coach Mark Few yells at players in second half of Thursday’s game)

Question: Do you realize how fortunate college basketball fans are in the Inland Northwest to have a consistent team of Gonzaga’s caliber? Or is it something you take for granted?

Minnick Put $2.5M In Idaho Pockets

U.S. Rep. Walt Minnick promised to fight for Idahoans when he took office, making it his top priority to hold federal government accountable. He fought to get Idahoans all they were owed from their government. He directed his staff to work hard for constituents and to get results. Minnick keeps promises. In 2009, Minnick’s offices put more than $2.5 million back into the pockets of individual Idahoans. That was money the federal government owed or was trying to take from businesses, seniors, veterans, and families. On top of that, Minnick’s offices ran lean enough to return $100,000 from his $1.5 million congressional budget to taxpayers. That budget covers the costs of staffing and running four offices in Idaho and one in Washington, DC./Dean Ferguson, New West guest writer. More here.

Question: Do you think this is something every congressman can claim? Or is this work by Minnick’s office a cut above?

High Noon: Taking The Plunge

This Saturday many folks will be “freezin’ for a reason” in the frigid waters of Medical Lake as the fourth annual Polar Plunge gets under way. Since its inception, this event has raised thousands of dollars for Special Olympics Washington. Airway Heights police officer Mikeal Suniga has enjoyed participating in the Polar Plunge. So when the staff sergeant with the Washington State Air National Guard was deployed to Iraq earlier this year, he was disappointed to know he’d miss it/CindyH, Washington Voices. More here.

Question: Have you ever participated in a Polar Bear plunge? Do you plan to do so again?

AM Scanner Traffic — 4.26.10

  • 11:59 a.m. “Detective Patty” of the Redmond, Wash., police is trying to get ahold of a construction worker at Silverwood who’s a witness in an ongoing trial.
  • 11:37 a.m. Ridgewood Drive/Post Falls resident reports that a large male w/tattoos got out of his newer white car at a neighbor’s and fire his rifle.
  • 11:19 a.m. A male is “extremely agitated” re: getting a collection agency notice re: an animal control citation.
  • 11:16 a.m. David on Cove Court/Hayden reports his neighbor’s chickens are in his yard.
  • 11:10 a.m. Officer warns that Michelle will have her pickup towed away if she doesn’t pick it up at a Coeur d’Alene church.
  • 10:31 a.m. Maintenance workers trying to clear a smoke detector at Cabella’s accidentally set off the commercial fire alarm by blowing air into it.
  • 10:11 a.m. Unconscious person reported @ Bateman & Dakota/Hayden.
  • 9:07 a.m. What appears to be snowboard boots are lying in the w/b lanes of I-90 near the H95 exit.
  • 9:04 a.m. A mother believes her teen daughter was drugged and raped last night.
  • 9:01 a.m. One driver in a 2-vehicle crash @ Prairie & Greensferry/Post Falls remains in his vehicle, possibly injured.
  • 8:43 a.m. An 18YO female who wears a neck brace fell 8 feet and now can’t move her right arm @ McGuire & Hayden/Post Falls.
  • 8:39 a.m. Candace reports possible abuse of a horse in the Garwood area.
  • 8:31 a.m. Caller reports that one of 2 horses checked out by animal control on Poleline/Post Falls Thursday appears to be worse today.

Senate OKs ‘Conscience’ Bill 21-13

SB 1353, the “conscience” bill, has passed the Senate on a 21-13 vote, but only after strong objections to the bill were expressed by many senators. “I probably could support this legislation had the authors not included the ‘end-of-life’ portion,” said Sen. Joyce Broadsword, R-Sagle. Sen. Diane Bilyeu, D-Pocatello, said, “I guess I can envision myself making the decision to refuse nourishment, and quite frankly, I don’t think that any health care professional should be able to override my decision”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here. And: Debate here.

Question: What do you make of the end-of-life and stem cell provisions in the proposed legislation?

Tea Groups Meet Eyman In Post Falls

Initiative “king” Tim Eyman, left, speaks to a receptive audience at Freedom Festival 3, a gathering of Tea Party-type groups Thursday night at the Greyhound Park in Post Falls. Eyman talked about the negation of Initiative 960 by the Washington State legislature and his attempts to bring it back in another form. (Jesse Tinsley/SR)

Eyman was soliciting signatures for his latest tax adventure, I-1053, which would reinstate I-960, the initiative repealed last week by the state Legislature and signed by Gov. Chris Gregoire Wednesday. Eyman was asking people to sign his petition using the same pen Gregoire used to sign the bill. “I thought it was fitting,” he said. Approved in 2007, I-960 required a two-thirds majority for the Legislature to raise taxes, among other requirements.. The recent action marks the third time government has overturned similar initiatives, Eyman said/Sara Leaming, SR. More here.

Question: Should Legislatures have the power to overturn citizen initiatives?

Cindy’s ‘Hold-em’ Adventure Short

CindyH: Let’s just say my Texan adventure was short and sweet. I lasted 45 minutes. But I did win a couple hands, probably due to the cleavage, because it certainly wasn’t my skill. It was a lot of fun though. The most fun was the half hour or so I got to learn and practice. Some of those tournament guys were pretty serious. Lots of grunting and tapping without much chatting. Heck. I can hear grunting and tapping for free at home Alas, I missed the cigar tutorial at Legends of Fire. But there’s always next time. Right now, I’m going to check out the Spa and get a pedicure. Seems like a good way to recover from last night.

Question: Are you surprised/disappointed/other that Cindy lasted 45 minutes in a game of Texas Hold-em?

UI’s Iupati Projected High In NFL Draft

Mike Iupati has become a projected first-round pick in the 2010 NFL draft largely thanks to the sacrifice and wisdom of his parents. The wisdom of NFL scouts will soon determine his professional fate. Widely considered the top prospect at guard —, USA TODAY’s scouting service, ranks Iupati the No. 15 player overall and the only guard projected to go in the first two rounds — he could also get a long look at the more valued left tackle position or even on defense. “I really love defense,” Iupati, who played collegiately at Idaho, said Thursday at the scouting combine. “That’s my favorite passion of the game of football/Nate Davis, USA Today. More here. Also: Sporting News story on Iupati here. H/T: Idaho Dad. (Photo: Greg Keller/Idaho Press-Tribune; Iupati hugs Coach Robb Akey in the final seconds of Idaho’s Humanitarian Bowl win over Bowling Green Dec. 30.)

Question: Do you follow the NFL draft?

HBO Poll: Change Rape Law

  • Thursday Poll: 55 of 84 respondents (65%) said Idaho should change its rape law to protect partners of up to 3 years older of consenting 16- to 17-year-olds. 22 of 84 respoondents (26%) said the statutory rape laws should remain as they are.
  • Women In Subs: 50 of 95 respondents (53%) said the military should continue to ban female sailors from serving on submarines. 42 of 95 respondents (44%) said it shouldn’t.
  • Today’s Question (in left rail, from Idaho Statesman): What should be done with the orca whale that killed a SeaWorld trainer this week?

Idaho Delegation Most Conservative

Surprise! Surprise! Idaho’s congressional delegation has been selected as the most conservative one in the nation from the National Journal’s vote rankings. Behind Idaho on the conservative list are Kentucky, South Carolina, Texas, and Georgia. On the liberal side, Massachusetts leads the pack, followed by Hawaii, Vermont, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. U.S. Sen. Jim Risch, R-Idaho, is listed as the 5th most conservative member of the Senate. Mike Crapo was No. 16. U.S. Rep. Walt Minnick, D-Idaho, ranked No. 185 and Mike Simpson No. 152 in the overall House conservative list. You can check the list out here.

Question: Are you surprised that “conservative” Idaho Congressman Minnick ranks in the middle of the pack overall?

The Political Sandbox — 4.26.10

Assemblywoman Anna Caballero, D-Salinas, holds a “Cussing jar” on the desk of Assemblyman Anthony Partanino, D-Pasadena. Partanino said he sent a jar to all the legislators so they can collect money for cussing for their favorite charities in their districts on Thursday. McKay Hatch, a 16-year-old boy launched the no-cussing movement that prompted resolution, ACR 112, that was approved Thursday by the Assembly. It would declare the first week of March each year as “Cuss Free Week” in California. (AP Photo/HECTOR AMEZCUA/Sacramento Bee)

Your political Wild Card is in play …

Pro-Con: Women On Subs?

Northerner: As one who was there when the warships were integrated, I hope they have plenty of legalmen and JAG reps available for all of the harassment claims being filed. And I am sure it is discriminatory, but it is a fact that a sub can be on patrol for upwards of ninety days (rough estimate). If a female becomes pregnant within a week or two of the patrol beginning, it could be three months before she could receive any prenatal care. And it is not the same as a female in a combat zone. She can be transferred out if she gets pregnant. On a sub, there really isn’t any way to do that without jeopardizing the mission at hand. There are disastrous things that happen when a ship gets integrated. I can only imagine how this will affect subs.

Megan_B:  It’s not fair to ban women when you could just as easily ban men and have an all-female crew. You can’t favor one sex over the other, that is discrimination. If these men can’t be trained to manage their pee-pee’s urges, they need not be allowed. Simple as that.

Question: Who do you agree with — Northerner or Megan_B?

WayneH: Texting Ban Unenforceable

Such a statute raises a legitimate enforcement question. How can a police officer tell that the driver of a vehicle is texting? An officer would have to be able to see into a vehicle and know what’s going on below the horizon of the car window — from across the road or down the street. I’ve asked several police officers to explain to me how they’d enforce this law, and the answer is they can’t. “It’s unenforceable,” one officer told me flat out. Unless officers pull someone over and observe a driver texting as they approach the vehicle, or the person admits to texting, it’s going to be awfully difficult for officers to enforce the statute/Wayne Hoffman, Idaho Freedom Foundation. More here.

Question: Should Idaho lawmakers go ahead with a texting-while-driving ban, even though it may be unenforceable and there’s no hard data, according to Hoffman, that it causes more crashes than other distractions?

Wedding Crasher Faces Court Date

She showed up at weddings uninvited, mingled with guests and never left empty-handed. A Spokane woman’s wedding-crashing scheme unraveled last summer when an old high school classmate – and off-duty police officer – recognized her at a wedding where she wasn’t an invited guest. When the hosts discovered missing gifts, they realized they’d been looted. Now Pamula W. McBride, 46, will serve 45 days in jail for stealing gift cards and personal checks from a wedding in Nez Perce County, Idaho, last June. Police also suspect McBride stole similar items from the gift table at Scott Drago’s wedding reception at Cataldo Hall on the Gonzaga University campus July 18, nearly one month after she stole from a wedding at the Lewiston Elks Lodge/Meghann M. Cuniff, Sirens & Gavels. More here.

Question: What would be a good sentence for an individual who crashed weddings to steal gifts?

AM Headlines — 4.26.10

Jeret Peterson of the USA performs his second jump in the men’s freestyle aerials final at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia, Thursday. The Idaho Statesman tells of Boisean Peterson’s long road to the silver here. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Idahoan Longest Serving Paper Girl

Darlyne Markus flips through past payment books in the living room of her Nampa, Idaho home on Thursday. Markus was recognized by the Guinness World Records as the world’s longest serving paper girl for her 50 years of service to the Idaho Press-Tribune. Idaho Press Tribune story by Sharon Strauss here. (AP Photo/Idaho Press-Tribune, Charlie Litchfield)

Question: Have you ever had a newspaper route? Tell us about it.

Update: Aryans Mull John Day Move

Mullet said he would like to attend the town hall meetings on Friday, but he can’t get day off work. The 39-year-old resident of Athol, Idaho, said he is in the construction business. Mullet said he was originally a Ku Klux Klan member, starting in 1995. He declared himself the national leader of the Aryan Nations last April, because, he said, he is in the forefront, making “the mission” come alive. The community’s determination to keep him out of John Day, he said, has strengthened his resolve. “They want to mess with me, they mess with the wrong bird,” he said. “I have way too much stuff to file lawsuits against John Day for discrimination on political beliefs, and I have an attorney looking into this now”/Lauren Dake, Bend Bulletin. More here.

DFO: Tony Stewart and Norm Gissell, of the Kootenai County Task Force On Human Relations, will meet with residents of John Day, Ore., today — to tell them how to combat in a legal way the presence of white supremacists in their community.

Bay Views: Beating The System

After being shown the door at several marinas for inability to pay fees, he finally sailed the boat over to Eagle Landing at Farragut State Park. Evicted from there, he set out to examine the regulations on anchoring out from shore. He found that if the boat carries current registration and has an operable anchor light it is legal as long as it’s not just stored on the water, but has periodic habitation. We learned this from Matt Street, Sgt, Kootenai County Water Patrol. This 26 foot blue sailboat sits calmly out from shore at the head of Scenic Bay, tethered to a buoy which is anchored to the bottom. Dan finally figured out how to win even when the system didn’t work for him/Herb Huseland, Bay Views. More here.

Question: Have you ever considered living off the grid? How would you do it? 

Ramirez: Obama At Waterloo

Michael Ramirez/Investor’s Business Daily

Gonzaga 88, Santa Clara 51

Gonzaga’s Bol Kong looks to pass to Kelly Olynyk, left, against Santa Clara’s Marc Trasolini, center, and Phillip Bach, during the second half of their NCAA college basketball game at the McCarthey Athletic Center in Spokane on Thursday.  Gonzaga beat Santa Clara 88-51. ESPN Game story here. (AP Photo/Rajah Bose)

AG: CdA Tribe Bill Constitutional

A new informal Idaho Attorney General’s opinion, issued today in response to a request from House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Clark, R-Hayden Lake, says there are no constitutional problems with HB 500, the cooperative law enforcement legislation proposed by the Coeur d’Alene Tribe. “It’s perfectly clear,” Clark said. “I think the A.G.’s analysis is right on the mark - all the constitutional issues just go away. Now let’s talk about real issues, let’s try to get some public safety for people who are non-Indians living on Indian reservations”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here. And AG’s opinion here.

Question: How do you think the five-county, North Idaho delegation will vote on this bill (given the fact that the sheriff’s association opposes it)?

Parting Shot — 4.25.10

Coeur d’Alene Police Department officers were out in force to welcome Officer Shane Avriett/Air Force Tech. Sergeant Avriett home from a 6-month deployment with his Air Force Reserve unit in Iraq. More here. John Craig/SR story w/photos here. KXLY story by McKay Allen here. And: KREM2 stories and video here.

Wild Card/Thursday — 2.25.10

I still haven’t found a decent photo for the daily cutline contest. But I’ll keep looking. Meanwhile, I’ll play this Wild Card for those of you who want to start a thread that doesn’t involve politics …

Jai Nelson Sends Out Campaign Letter

Thanks to one of my army of Berry Pickers who helps me stay aware of what’s going on out there, I have a copy of Jai Nelson’s recent newsletter. In it, Jai introduces herself as someone “committed to looking ahead for all of Kootenai County.” She continues to say that she offers Kootenai County the “decisive leadership” it needs “to prosper and advance. I will provide leadership that envisions our future, seeks opportunities for economic growth, chooses specifics over cursory and principles over convenience.” She closes by asking for a contribution “whether you have 40 minutes, 40 hours or $40 or more to contribute.” What she doesn’t offer is the name of the treasurer (Mary Brown) that should go along with the “paid for by the Committee to Elect Jai Nelson.” I consider that a minor miscue. See .jpg link here. You can see Brown’s name on Jai’s official Web site here.

WWSD (What would Spencer do?): Wasn’t there a bit of a flap during the City Council race involving a similar minor flub committed by the Kennedy campaign. Just askin’.

PM Headlines — 2.25.10

Herb tells of an unemployed man w/a boat in Bayview beating a system that seems stacked against him. Read today’s Bay Views here.

PM Scanner Traffic — 2.25.10

  • 6:02 p.m. 30YO Male upset over divorce is threatening suicide on 9th/CdA.
  • 5:51 p.m. Wilkinson/Rathdrum caller reports a possible scam from Nickel’s Worth ad.
  • 5:49 p.m. A black cow is wandering on Chase & Fisher/Post Falls.
  • 5:35 p.m. A green couch is lying on n/b H95 near Wyoming/Hayden.
  • 5:33 p.m. Caller wants a wood cutter checked out on a neighbor’s property b/c a number of wood thefts have occurred in the area.
  • 5:20 p.m. A 44YO female w/o a medical history has collapsed in 1500 block of Summit/CdA.
  • 4:57 p.m. Patrol officer is asking for agency support on a “high-risk stop” of maroon SUV w/Washington plates @ Seltice & Potlatch. Patrolman followed car off freeway. E/b traffic is being stopped at Greensferry.
  • 4:37 p.m. Injury accident reported b/n Chevy Metro & a bicycle @ 3rd & Locust. 45YO Biker wasn’t wearing a helmet. He’s bleeding from the mouth, nose, and missing teeth. He may have suffered a head injury.
  • 3:55 p.m. Kimberly reports that someone is using her credit card number online.
  • 3:29 p.m. Caller from red Honda Civic complains that 3 males in a company truck ran him off I-90 @ Government Way overpass. Another caller said male in Honda Civic was the reckless driver.
  • 3:13 p.m. Resident arrived home in 100 block of Agate & Highland/CdA to find house full of smoke.
  • More below

Dogwalk: Governed By Children

I see the ball being squarely in the President’s court. If he doesn’t go back and amend his outline to include some of what the Republicans want we’ll know there was no good faith in this meeting. It indeed will be nothing more then theater. Actually, he has to do a bit more. He has to take Pelosi and Reid to the woodshed if necessary to get them to cooperate. I doubt that he will nor that they would. If there is no move toward the Republicans I will have lost the final wisp of respect I have for the President and his party. It’s sad, really. I’m moving more and more toward the likelihood of no longer participating in national elections/Dogwalk Musings. More here.

Question: Do you view the bipartisan attempt to reach agreement on health care reform to be anything more than political theater for President Obama and the gathered partisans?

CPD Blue Avriett Returns From Iraq

Coeur d’Alene Police Department Officer Shane Avriett/Air Force Tech. Sergeant Avriett arrived home safely at Fairchild AFB today after a 6 month deployment with his Air Force Reserve unit in Iraq. More Coeur d’Alene Today photos here and here.

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

California OKs ‘Cuss Free Week’

Item: California Assembly passes resolution for ‘Cuss Free Week’/Denis C. Theriault/Mercury News

More Info: Feeling a little salty? Better get it out of your system while you can. Amid the ongoing — and occasionally tense — debate over how to clean up California’s budget mess, lawmakers have taken time out to tidy something else almost as unmanageable: our language. This morning, the Assembly approved a ceremonial resolution turning the first week of March into “Cuss Free Week.” Once the Senate follows suit, say good-bye to four-letter words, a few choice compound words and probably certain gestures, too. Not that police officers will be waiting with soap.

Question: Could you go a week without cussing?

Going, Going …

In this April 10, 2001, file photo, Arnold Schwarzenegger poses with a 2001 concept Hummer H2 at the utility vehicle’s unveiling in New York’s Times Square. The Hummer, the beefy, military-inspired SUV _ a macho icon for fans like Schwarzenegger and a symbol of ruin for environmentalists _ was done in by high gas prices and bad economic times. Unless a last-minute buyer steps forward, Hummer is going the way of Saturn and Pontiac. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

Question: Will you be sorry to see the Hummer go the way of the dodo? And/or: What other vehicles would you like to see go extinct?

Solon Wants To Raise Seatbelt Fine

Adults caught in a car without their seatbelts on in Idaho could see their costs rise five-fold. Rep. Rich Wills, a Glenns Ferry Republican, introduced a bill Thursday to add court costs of $41.50 to the existing $10 fine levied on adults who don’t buckle up. Juveniles caught without seatbelts already pay $51.50, including the court costs. Wills says it’s only fair for adults to pay the same as those under 18/Associated Press. More here.

Question: How long do you think it’ll be before Idaho fines for failing to buckle up is as bad as those in Washington? Do you support an increase in the seatbelt fine?

Report: 44% Of Teachers Got Raises

Item: Teacher raises raise eyebrows: Report shows 44 percent of Idaho teachers received raises this year; Luna decries pay increases during downturn/Ben Botkin, Twin Falls Times-News
More Info: The Idaho State Department of Education report shows that 37.4 percent of administrative employees have increased salaries this year, while 44.2 percent of teachers across the state are earning more. This comes as state agencies are freezing salaries and assessing furlough days to employees in efforts to offset declining revenues. “Quite frankly, I was surprised when I saw this,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna said in a statement. “In this economic situation, I don’t know how anyone can justify giving anyone a raise. This is $22 million in pay increases that could have been used to preserve successful classroom programs.”

Question: An argument can be made that Idaho teachers deserve raises because they are among the poorest paid in the country? Would you buy that argument?

APhoto Of The Day — 2.25.10

The Aflac duck mascot visits the floor of the New York Stock Exchange today to celebrate his 10th anniversary representing the company. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. The mascot ducked for cover when he heard investors were suddenly buying in a ‘down’ market — JohnA.
  • 2. Traders at the NYSE are hard at work getting their ducks in a row — Nic.
  • 3. Gimme a thousand shares of DUK and put it on my bill! — rdunlap; and: The goose was wary when the rumors of the bear were abound — Cabbage Boy.

Bubblehead: Women On Subs! Hunh?

Had to happen someday. My major concern is not how it will work on the boat, but how the media attention will cause more work for already overtasked Submariners. There will probably be the same proportion of whiny female Submariners as there are male; the big difference will be that the whiny females will get a lot of press, resulting in more and more useless training and potentially causing a mission-degrading CYA mentality among the leadership. I would hope the Submarine Force bigwigs will be able to keep it in perspective when the first inevitable problems happen, but I doubt they will/Bubblehead, The Stupid Shall Be Punished. More here.

Re: Navy ready to end ban on women in submarines/CNN

Brock: GOP Purity Vs. Pragmatism

The RNC gathering, held in January in Hawaii, had real promise for solving the conservative identity crisis. One delegate proposed a 10-point litmus test to separate the conservative wheat from liberal riffraff. The questions were pretty predictable, including the holy trinity of guns, gays and government. (The correct answers, for those of you scoring at home, are “yes,” “no,” and “no.”) Any GOP candidate who incorrectly interpreted more than two of the 10 fatwas would have been denied funding by the RNC. Voila! A loyalty test directly tied to campaign cash. It was a brilliant idea, masterfully framed, but it had a fatal flaw. Any candidate who passed the test would be perceived, and rightly so, as an ideological zombie marching in formation with the Far-out Right. So the muscular litmus test was withdrawn/William Brock, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here.

Question: If your party had a litmus test for members, based on the ideals of its true believers, could you pass the test?

High Noon: Embracing A Bad Past

KPerry: 10 years ago I was working full time in a fast food restaurant 12 or more hours a day and addicted to meth. Now- I work in prevention and am looking forward to celebrating 7 years clean on April 16th. In between then and now I lost everything, went to jail, moved 800 miles to Spokane where I didn’t know anybody or my way around and only had a bike and lived at Hi-Co Village on the Newport Highway. Got 2 jobs to keep myself out of trouble, went to school, got my degree, my kids back and this job that keeps my head where it belongs. I have everything I need and many things that I don’t (wants)my kids are doing well and life goes on. We wouldn’t be the people we are without our pasts. I used to be ashamed of my past, but now I embrace it, for it has made me the strong woman that I am today.

Question: What have you learned from past mistakes that has made you a stronger person?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 2.25.10

Don Sausser caught this activity — repair of the Boardwalk bridge on the west side of the Coeur d’Alene Resort — on the north shore of Lake Coeur d’Alene this morning.

AM Scanner Traffic — 2.25.10

  • 11:34 a.m. Ron @ Cheap Car & Trucks/Government Way reports that a 2000 pickup has been stolen.
  • 11:15 a.m. Dog running in traffic is causing a traffic hazard on H95 @ Chilco.
  • 10:55 a.m. A person is unconscious on 1500 block of Polston/Post Falls.
  • 10:36 a.m. A teen is suffering from a blood clot on Deschutes & Issaquah/Post Falls.
  • 10:23 a.m. A 50ish female hit her head in a fall after suffering a seizure @ Peak Health & Fitness Center, 940 Ironwood.
  • 10:14 a.m. Male in KCSD lobby wants to see code book re: seatbelt laws.
  • 10:06 a.m. Someone is experiencing a breathing problem at the scene of the trailer fire @ B&B RV Park, Government Way & Cosgrove.
  • 9:28 a.m. A wheel came off a passing car and hit a Hyundai for sale at a local dealership. Patrol officers are trying to contact dealership manager. Didn’t get location.
  • 8:46 a.m. Walter hit a deer on Hayden Lake Road, about a mile up from Honeysuckle, but couldn’t stop because he had to take his kids to school. Deer is still alive.
  • 8:38 a.m. A mobile home at B&B RV Park, Government Way and Cosgrove, is fully engulfed by fire. Patrol units have been asked to shut down nearby Neider because the smoke is obscuring the view of motorists.
  • 8:35 a.m. A vehicle carrier hauling a black-and-orange Cavalier is losing chunks of tire tread from its trailer @ H95 & H53.
  • 8:32 a.m. Caller saw 2 males in a VW flash a weapon on I-90 @ 13.5 (7th Street).
  • 8:26 a.m. Holly wants to see an officer re: a ticket she got for expired license tabs.
  • 8:10 a.m. A 75YO female is unconscious in 2100 block of Rosseau.

Bubblehead: Labrador Not A Birther

Bubblehead: I went to a “Meet and Greet” for Rep. Raul Labrador last night, and can report that he is in no way a Birther. (Based on the discussion here last week, he was ready for me, and brought it up himself when he realized who I was) I was quite favorably impressed. I’ll post my report on my blog later — it’s currently out to the Labrador campaign for comments.

Question: Are you relieved to discover that one of HBO’s southern Idaho brethren has checked out congressional candidate Raul Labrador and found out he’s not a ‘birther’?

URA Proposals Like Strip Poker?

(Lenore) Barrett, pictured, a miner and investor who’s been giving good quote for 18 years, strongly opposes a 66-page revision of Idaho urban renewal law drafted by an attorney for Boise’s Capital City Development Corporation. Barrett objected to using House Bill 567 as a template for reform and possible incorporation of six other bills generally opposed by redevelopment agencies across the state. “I’m not supporting 567 as a template,” Barrett said. “That’s like playing strip poker. This was written by the people who are all on one side of the issue.” Added Barrett: “If you’re gonna play strip poker, the first thing you give up is your tie. That’s no big deal. You just sit around hoping that you don’t have to give up your underwear. Well, you’re not playing strip poker unless you have to give up your underwear”/Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Have you ever played strip poker?

HBO Poll: No To Hiding Hunter Names

  • Wednesday Poll: 55 of 106 respondents (51%) oppose a move by the Idaho Legislature to exempt the names of hunters and fishermen from public disclosure laws. 48 of 106 (45%) said the state should protect the names.
  • Today’s Question: Should Idaho law be changed to protect a partner of a consenting 16- or 17-year-old from statutory rape charges?

Cindy: Texas Holdem, Anyone?

CindyH: So, I’m making my first visit to a casino tonight. It ladies night out at Northern Quest and apparently they have some excellent lady Poker players out there who have invited me to join them. One problem: never played Texas Holdem in my life. Any advice?

Question: Anyone know how to play Texas Holdem? And/or: What do you play when you go to a casino?

Political Sandbox — 2.25.10

President Barack Obama shakes hands with Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas, in the Blair House across the street from the White House in Washington, Thursday, prior to the start of the bipartisan health care reform meeting. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Question: Barack Obama is trying to hammer out bipartisan health care reform with Republicans this morning. Obama has as much chance of reaching agreement as HMO and the Left Bank do on this political Wild Card …

Sen. Smyser: What Conflict?

Idaho Democratic Party Chairman Keith Roark says the state’s conflict of interest laws need strengthening, citing yesterday’s vote-change that killed a tobacco bill, by a senator whose husband is a tobacco lobbyist. The senator, Melinda Smyser, said her vote had nothing to do with her husband’s work. “I have my own life,” she told the Associated Press. “I would never do anything to jeopardize how I represent my constituents.” In more than three dozen other states, legislators who could be personally or financially affected by a bill are required to recuse themselves from voting on it/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Do you think the state of Idaho has adequate laws to prevent conflicts of interest on the part of elected officials?

Statutory Rape Law Could Change

Originally posted at 6 p.m. Wednesday

Idaho could rewrite its statutory rape laws to exclude relationships between consenting teenagers. The changes would decriminalize sex between teenage girls aged 16 or 17 with partners up to three years older than them. The Senate Judiciary and Rules Committee agreed Wednesday to introduce the legal change introduced by Sen. Brent Hill, R-Rexburg (pictured). “I don’t believe that an 18-year-old boy’s indiscretion with a willing 17-year-old girlfriend ranks up there with the degenerates that rape women,” Hill said. “I was surprised to see it lumped in there with some of the most terrible crimes a person could commit.” Current Idaho rape laws list statutory rape,  called sexual penetration when a woman is under 18, alongside other forms of rape/Brad Iverson-Long, Idaho Reporter. More here.

Question: Do you consider the changes being proposed in statutory rape laws for consenting teens who are under-age reasonable?

AM Headlines — 4.25.10

Idaho Coach Robb Akey, center, shakes hands with Ferris’ Connor Halliday, right, at the end of the annual Inland Northwest Sports Awards luncheon Wednesday at the Spokane Convention Center. Greg Lee story here. Also: See Mike Vlahovich story below. (Jesse Tinsley/SR)


In The News: Bomb Squad

A stuffed rhino peers out of a pocket of USAF senior airman Kyle Brown from Toledo, Ohio, member of an Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit, as USAF Staff Sgt. Joshua Rickert, from San Antonio, Texas, checks for improvised explosive devices in the Badula Qulp area, west of Lashkar Gah in Helmand province, southern Afghanistan Tuesday. (AP Photo/Pier Paolo Cito)

Killer Whales Aren’t Gentle Fish

Having seen orca pods in the past, sedately moving through the water, I am as in awe of their beauty and their majestic intelligence as I am of dolphins. However, I have also witnessed orcas being fed in captivity. There is no way you could ever get me to feed an orca, despite all the warm-fuzzy pictures of them being fed at Sea World and other places. Tipping the scales at over 4,000 pounds, they are still dangerous creatures. Speaking for myself, climbing into the water with one of these majestic creatures is out of the question. Even worse, what would motivate people to come by the hundreds of thousands each year to watch humans sitting inches from orcas or, in some instances, climbing into pools of water with them?/Dave Laird, Community Comment. More here.

Question: Would you be more or less likely to watch a show involving killer whales after the accident that claimed a female trainer at SeaWorld in Florida Wednesday?

Former Zag Now A CPD Blue

Now that Winston Brooks is back, you might recognize him. If he pulls you over, it’s all right to tell Coeur d’Alene’s new police officer you’ve seen his face somewhere while you fish for your license. “I get that a lot,” Winston said. “They say, ‘Hey, don’t I know you?’” It’s probably from TV, or the sports pages. Gonzaga University basketball fans probably still remember the 96-95 loss to the University of Arizona during the second round of the 2003 NCAA tournament, the first double-overtime thriller in bracket play/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d’Alene Press. More here. (SR archive photo/Brian Plonka shows Brooks during a first-round NCAA game in Salt Lake City in 2003 against Cincinnati.)

Question: How cool is it to have former Gonzaga basketball player Winston Brooks on the Coeur d’Alene Police Department?

Racists Go Calling In Oregon Town

An Aryan Nations member from Athol visited John Day, Ore., last week, making clear his plan to set up a headquarters compound in that rural town. “They just came by the office and said, ‘We’re here in town and we just want to let you know what’s going on,’ ” said Scotta Callister, editor of the Blue Mountain Eagle, a weekly newspaper in John Day. Paul Mullet of Athol was joined by two Grant County, Ore., residents – Jacob Green and Christopher Cowan – and Leif Berlin, supposedly the Aryan Nations’ Washington state leader, a story on the Eagle Web site said. Mullet did not respond to numerous calls requesting comment/Alison Boggs, SR. More here(AP File Photo: Richard Butler salutes along with other members of the neo Nazi group during a rally in Coeur d’ Alene on July 3, 1999)

Question: What advice would you give the residents of John Day, Ore., re: how to deal with the Aryan Nations?

Ramirez: Fatal Attraction

Michael Ramirez/Investor’s Business Daily

New Mexico State 74, Idaho 57

It was all going well for the Vandals until just after the midway point of the first half Wednesday night. That’s when New Mexico State clamped down defensively and went on a 23-4 flurry to close the half. The withering run helped the Aggies cruise to a 74-57 conquest in Las Cruces. UI shot just 31% from the field and had 19 turnovers. Idaho is now 13-14 and 4-9 in the WAC.

Parting Shot — 2.24.10

In this photo taken on Dec. 30, 2005, Dawn Brancheau, a whale trainer at SeaWorld Adventure Park, poses while performing. Brancheau was killed in an accident with a killer whale at the SeaWorld Shamu Stadium Wednesday afternoon. (AP Photo/Orlando Sentinel, Julie Fletcher)

Hump Day Wild Card — 2.24.10

MamaJD has a problem. I’ll let her explain: “I need to find candy cigarettes for a gag gift due tomorrow.  I saw them back in September at the Corner Market at Priest Lake (shout out to Pecky!) so I know they are still sold in some places.  I am wondering if anyone knows where I can find a ‘pack’ locally?  Perhaps some Hucksters might have some ideas?” You can answer MamaJD’s question. Or use this Wild Card to start your own thread …

PM Scanner Traffic — 2.24.10

  • 5:59 p.m. Wilma reports that her horse was shot through the shoulder today.
  • 5:45 p.m. 7-11 manager wants a long-haired, drunk man removed from parking lot.
  • 5:28 p.m. Nathan wants to know how many dogs can he own in the county.
  • 5:27 p.m. A Highway 41 resident returned home to find an unknown vehicle high-centered on a rock in her driveway.
  • 4:29 p.m. Female on Caravelle/Athol has cut her hand deeply w/a knife.
  • 4:20 p.m. CPD Blue is checking out a primered 1959 pickup on Ironwood & NW Blvd. that may have on license plates belonging to a 2005 Silverado.
  • 3:48 p.m. A bicyclist is down on his hands and knees after being hit by a vehicle @ Haycraft & 15th/CdA.
  • More below

PM Headlines — 2.24.10

New Washington State University athletic director Bill Moos, center, holds up a copy of his old football jersey as WSU president Elson S. Floyd, right, and interim athletic director Anne McCoy, left, watch after Floyd introduced him at a news conference this afternoon in Pullman. Story below. (AP Photo/Dean Hare)

APhoto Of The Day — 2.24.10

Eight-month-old Alaster “Gator” Thompson protectively puts his hand on a stack of free pancakes as his uncle Kevin Johnson, right, looks on during the IHOP National Pancake Day Celebration held at the Bryan, Texas, location Tuesday morning. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/The Bryan-College Station Eagle, Dave McDermand)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. All you can eat pancakes, huh? Yipppeee. Now, can I get some Tums for the heartburn later? Gator? — Arch Druid.
  • 2. When manager Jack Smith complained about the possesive young lad, his uncle said “Sorry about the flap, Jack” — JohnA.
  • 3. Gator knows better than to leave his pancakes unguarded when Uncle Kevin is around — Moscow Minidoka.
  • HM: Fat Lady Sings

HBO Blogosphere — 4.24.10

For those of you who failed to show for Blogfest ‘10, Dogwalk Musings provides proof that Christie Wood brought scrumptious cupcakes to add to the treats at Steve Widmyer’s Fort Ground Grill — and to make the point that she has a sense of humor (unlike her detractors).

MT: ‘Hang’ Patty Murray Talk Violent

Tea Party members have flirted with this message, but subtly. You’ll see one fellow who attends a rally carrying a sign of President Obama as a Nazi. Another wears a T-shirt referring to the “tree of liberty” - as in Jefferson’s quote about refreshing the tree of liberty “from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.” Or a Tea Party parade float in Idaho Falls displays a tree of liberty and depicted on a nearby ax was Obama’s name. All of it has been background noise. So far. This is new. Singling out an elected official for a violent end is shockingly overt. So what did Capps do? She blamed the media. KLEW-TV, which aired the segment, “didn’t print the whole thing.” But she wasn’t ambushed in an interview, grasping for time to think or the right words to speak. Microphone in hand at the podium, she deliberately expressed her ideas/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question:  Do you think the Tea Party movement will beget violence?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 2.24.10

Seattle Mariners manager Don Wakamatsu uses a bat to illustrate a point while working with catchers at the team’s baseball spring training facility earlier today in Peoria, Ariz. (AP Photo/Paul Connors)

KalaeC: Older, Wiser @ 30

I turn 30 today (Tuesday). My thought on that: the older, the wiser. Thus, I feel really smart today. Okay, maybe not. But I can say I definitely feel more confident, comfortable, maybe even more happy with age. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my 20’s. I loved college, living with girlfriends. Staying out until 3 in the morning, sleeping passed noon. Moving to Montana for new adventures and a brand new career. Living on my own, with no responsibilities. The entire ten years was awesome, a fun time, a time to remember. But it’s odd how priorities change with age. Ten years ago, I would have considered a drive around town pointless, a Friday night at home with the family boring, going to bed at 8 o’clock lame. Now, those are among my favorite things. Being a wife and mom are the two most important things in my life/Kalae Chock, KXLY. More here.

Question: How have priorities changed for you from 10 years ago until now?

In The News: Whale Kills Trainer

Sea World employees stand in front of a locked gate leading to a bridge to the entrance of the Shamu Stadium after an incident involving the death of a trainer in Orlando, Fla., Wednesday. Story here. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

SteveC: Self-Checkout Not Our Friend

Let’s be honest: We are — all of us — about one electronic glitch away from being in serious trouble, be it from identity theft to tax fraud. So these self-checkout counters that abound in grocery stores nowadays make me pretty danged nervous. It’s essentially an electronic nanny system, programmed to catch you cheating. Yet it’s worse: The technology not only assumes dishonesty; it assumes competence. Bad, bad idea. See, the weight tallied on the bagging scale is checked to allow the customer to proceed if — an only if — the observed and expected weights match. If they don’t, a disembodied female voice stops you in your tracks. “Unexpected item in the bagging area”/Steve Crump, Twin Falls Times-News. More here.

Question: Do you feel comfortable enough with your computer competency to use the self-checkout counters in various grocery and retail stores?

Marc: Tribe Hasn’t Frozen Out Gazette

The Tribe works with all members of the media — big and small. I have been at the Tribe nearly two years and since that time no organization has been frozen out. As a former journalist, I understand the importance of being responsive to media requests. I do my best to get back to the Gazette as quickly as possible. The Tribe previously had a policy of not speaking with the Gazette. I ended that policy when I took the job. I’ve met regularly with Dan Hammes in an effort to keep those doors of communication open. We may not agree on many issues, but I understand his role in the community. Last fall, I invited the two new Gazette reporters to take a tour of the reservation and show them the various operations. To date, they haven’t taken me up on the offer/Marc Stewart, Coeur d’Alene Indian Tribe.

DFO: I give Marc big time kudos for his open-door policy at the Coeur d’Alene Indian Tribe. I covered the tribe for years. Early on, it sometimes was difficult to get information because tribe officials at the time didn’t understand the importance of media coverage. That changed when former PIO Bob Bostwick was hired by the tribe. I’m glad to see the openness continue under Marc.

CPD Blue To Honor Local Barista

A Coeur d’Alene espresso stand owner who turned the tables on a would-be robber by drawing a pistol on him will receive a crime prevention award from the police department Wednesday evening. Sunshine Espresso owner Michelle Cornelsen will be receiving the Citizen’s Crime Watch Prevention Award Wednesday evening at the Coeur d’Alene Police Department. Cornelsen is receiving the award for her efforts to thwart a teen who attempted to rob her espresso stand in late December. The teen showed her a gun but what the 17-year-old didn’t know was that Michelle had a concealed carry permit and her husband had bought her a gun for Christmas/Rob Kauder, KXLY. More here.

Question: Did the Sunshine Espresso owner do the right thing by pulling a gun on the would-be robber? Or would it have been better if she simply had given him the money?

High Noon: School Fires Entire Staff

Central Falls High School math teacher and athletic director Kathy Luther, left, librarian Debbie Fisher, second from left, English teacher Deloris Davis Grant, second from right, and math teacher Pat McKenna, right, protest outside the school before a school committee meeting in Central Falls, R.I., Tuesday. The committee voted during the evening meeting to fire every teacher at the high school at the end of the school year. (AP Photo/The Pawtucket Times, Butch Adams)

Question: Do you feel more secure in your job today than you were a year ago?

Nellis Tells UI Employees Of Furloughs

A Berry Picker sent the following letter circulated by President Duane Nellis to UIdaho faculty & staff this morning: “I write with an update to confirm that the University will implement a furlough plan, the details of which are being completed over the next few days and will be communicated early next week. The University is a complex organization, with many different functions and units and many different funding sources. As such, a furlough plan for the university is itself a complex process. Any furlough action, in any organization, is a major change and requires careful planning. We are committed to doing that planning so that the implementation is as smooth as possible and employees are treated fairly/UIdaho President Duane Nellis. More here.

Question: Are you concerned about the quality of education at the University of Idaho in the face of ongoing budget cuts?

Stewart: Tribe Doesn’t Use ‘R-Word’

Spokesman Marc Stewart/Coeur d’Alene Tribe: The Coeur d’Alene Tribe does not call people it disagrees with racists. Doug Payne’s assertion that “tribal advocates” marginalize and humiliate people by calling them racists as a matter of common practice is untrue. No one at the Tribe, including myself, has uttered the “R” word regarding this law enforcement issue. I have no idea what it is in the hearts of the decision makers in Benewah County. I fail to understand their logic on a number of issues, but it doesn’t mean I resort to calling people names or throwing insults at them. Doug Payne’s statement that the tribe uses race to advance government is untrue. More here.

Question: Who do you believe here?

F&G Manager: Wolf Wasn’t 180 Pounds

Today the CDA Press ran a front page story on a local hunter who shot a wolf in the Joe recently.  The story needs clarification. In that story, is the quote “It was the head and fur of what had been a massive wolf…The 2002 Coeur d’Alene High School graduate got what he estimated was a 180-pound wolf…” This wolf was NOT weighed by anyone, and was presented for check-in as stated – only a head and hide.  It “felt” like 180 lbs to the hunter - that doesn’t make it 180 lbs.  You can probably tell, chasing down these kinds of rumors ticks me off a bit, but it’s important for us all to deal with facts, not guesses/Jim Hayden, regional wildlife manager, Idaho F&G department. More below.

Question: Aren’t you glad there aren’t 180-pound wolves in the North Idaho woods?

AM Scanner Traffic — 2.24.10

  • 11:33 a.m. Brian has questions about his landlord.
  • 11:19 a.m. A motorist who is speeding and tailgating ran a red light at Prairie & Ramsey and may be drunk.
  • 11:12 a.m. Athol Elementary reports that a youngster w/a history of threatening to hurt himself left school grounds without permission and may be headed home.
  • 10:54 a.m. Kimberly has questions re: crime in her neighborhood.
  • 10:11 a.m. Medicine Man on Ironwood/CdA reports a break-in.
  • 9:20 a.m. An SUV is hanging over the embankment of Hauser Lake (near old Rainbow Inn and Cliffhouse Road). Caller didn’t stop to see if anyone was inside.
  • 9:14 a.m. A burglary may be in progress in 1400 block of Chickadee Lane/CdA. Caller who is not at home said he was told lights are on and neighbor heard a thumping noise.
  • 9:08 a.m. Home owner reports an electrical smell behind an outlet in 11200 block of Crystal Bay Road, but doesn’t see smoke or fire.
  • 8:57 a.m. A 70ish female was found without a pulse in 2000 block of Berrywood/CdA.
  • 8:33 a.m. A semi hauling two buildings on a trailer has a long rope dragging behind it on I-90 @ M/P 17 (Sherman Avenue).
  • 8:25 a.m. An alarm company accidentally set off the Hayden Kinder Center alarm while working on the system.
  • 8:14 a.m. Elderly male in wheelchair has collapsed in veterans affairs office on Ironwood.

Missoula Store Adopts No-Hoodie Policy

Kent Watkiss leaves the Noon’s store on the corner of Russell Avenue and 39th Street after purchasing a coffee Monday morning in Missoula, Mont. The store has adopted a “no hoodie” policy after a recent rash of robberies where the thieves wore hooded sweatshirts to conceal their identity. (AP Photo/The Missoulian, Linda Thompson)

Question: Do you expect the no-hoodie policy to spread throughout the region and country?

Otter: ‘I Got It Off My Chest’

Gov. Butch Otter said he was prompted to write his recent guest opinion slamming press coverage of his budget proposals because “I would like to see some compassion, maybe that’s the word I’m looking for,” he said. “This is a tough, tough position to be in, and it’s not fun, and I’ve got to pick and I’ve got to choose. And when you make those choices you’ve got to live with them. They’re not fun”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Which governor of the past 25 years do you think could have handled the Great Recession better than Otter? Why?

HBO Poll: Hiding Hunter Names

  • Tuesday Poll: 37 of 80 respondents (46%) said they haven’t donated blood in the last year, and another 22 of 80 (28%) said they have never donated blood. Only 21 of 80 (26%) have donated blood in the last year.
  • Today’s Poll (in lefthand rail): Do you support a bill that would keep the names of hunters and fishermen from the public?

Hammes: No Bedlam In Benewah

“It is difficult to imagine Tensed in bedlam, but it is. The cop from Coeur d’Alene says so. Christine Wood charged that rapists and child molesters were roaming free in Benewah County. This lawlessness, she says, has left citizens in “bedlam.” Wow. That sounds really bad. Of course, over the last few weeks there has been plenty said and written about the latest spat between the Coeur d’Alene Tribe and Benewah County. Little of it was pertinent to the topic at hand. A lot of it was just plain wrong”/Dan Hammes, St. Maries Gazette Record. More here.


John Day Reacts To Aryan Interest

Grant County residents are taking steps to fight any effort by members of a white supremacist group calling themselves the Aryan Nations to find a new headquarters in John Day. On Friday, residents will gather for two town hall meetings in Canyon City, just south of John Day. Speakers will include Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, attorneys Norman Gissell and Tony Stewart, who helped win a landmark judgment against the Church of Jesus Christ Christian-Aryan Nations in 2000. On Monday, 60 to 70 protesters carried signs in downtown John Day with slogans such as “One Race: Human,” “No to Aryan Nations!” and “Say No to Hate and Violence!”/Richard Cockle, Oregonian. More here. (Jesse Tinsley photo: Paul Mullet of the Aryan Nations attends the Freedom Festival at the Greyhound Park in Post Falls Dec. 2. He was asked to leave.)

Question: Is it fair to say that the Aryan Nations are looking to relocate from Athol to John Day, Ore., when the reincarnation of the movement seems to be a handful of individuals at best?

Political Sandbox — 2.24.10

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke is seen on a television screen on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange this morning. Story here. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Wild Card: You asked for it and now you have it — the Political Sandbox. That’ll be the name of the political wild card that I’ll post daily to allow the partisans to remain at one another’s throats in one main thread while the rest of you enjoy the other threads relatively politics free.

Idaho Immunization Lags Far Behind

With Idaho’s child immunization rate among the worst in the nation, lawmakers are revamping the state’s immunization reminder system to try to cover more people.  The Senate Health and Welfare Committee voted unanimously this afternoon in favor of SB 1335 - a measure sponsored by the committee’s chairwoman and several other lawmakers - to automatically enroll Idaho children in the reminder system unless their parents opt out. Currently, Idaho’s one of just five states where parents have to actively opt in to the reminder and tracking system/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Why is Idaho’s child immunization rate among the worst in the nation?

7 Bills Aim At Urban Renewal Changes

Item: Legislators weigh slate of urban renewal agency changes/Ben Botkin, Twin Falls Times-News

More Info: “The overall perception out there is there is not enough public participation with urban renewal,” said Rep. Phil Hart, R-Hayden, and a sponsor of four of the bills. “I think the public feels somewhat excluded from the urban renewal process, so this is an attempt to involve them.” Hart said that his proposal allowing other tax entities to opt out of a proposed urban renewal agency’s boundaries simply means that public support will become a key component of the process.

Question: What change would you like to see most in urban renewal agency law?

Local Man Bags 180-Pound Wolf

Item: Coeur d’Alene High grad shoots wolf in St. Joe River area: First hunting season for animals ends March 31/Bill Buley, Coeur d’Alene Press

More here: Pitcher dropped it with one shot from his 7mm Remington. “We’ve been going after wolf,” Pitcher said. “We finally caught up with one.” That brought the total number of wolves killed to 17 in the Panhandle - two so far in February - with a quota of 30. Statewide, 159 wolves have been killed out of the 220 quota. The wolf season ends March 31.

Question: How come lawmakers are busy trying to shut down access to the names of hunters and fishermen, to protect them from harassment, when wolf hunters here and elsewhere don’t seem to mind have their photo taken with their kill for the paper?

AM Headlines — 2.24.10

Don Sausser caught this shot of the late winter sun shining over Cougar Bay recently.

Christie Wood: Payne Clouding Issue

Christie Wood: The KCTFHR presented a letter to the legislators based on one concern, and that is the current lack of cooperation of LE leadership that creates a public safety issue for all residents of Benewah County. Mr. Payne’s history lesson as to why the elected officials are angry at the tribe is of no interest. Their duty as officers of the law and of the court is to put public safety for their citizens first and foremost. Do not confuse our concern for public safety (remember our mission is the protection and promotion of human rights) as a personal issue with the Sheriff or whether we believe Sheriff Kirts have ever served his country. I am sure his military record is impeccable, and honorable but that is simply not the issue. Mr. Payne knows better but has no reasonable explanation as to why he would condone criminals being set free. So he attempts to cloud the issue. More below.

Question: Why do you think cross deputization with the Coeur d’Alene Tribe works in Kootenai County but not Benewah County?

Benewah Prosecutor Rips DFO, Wood

Originally posted 4:05 p.m. Tuesday

“In case you missed it,” writes Benewah County Prosecutor Doug Payne in an open letter published on the Coeur d’Alene Press online, ”Mr. Oliveria held editorial court on Sheriff Bob Kirts. Oliveria affirmed Judge Christie Woods’ (Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations) Coeur d’Alene Press verdict saying Benewah County Sheriff Bob Kirts is a racist, an “uber-conservative” and a crude embarrassment to the enlightened. Further, he passed judgement on the residents of Benewah County saying Kirts’ crudeness would “play well in St. Maries” but obviously not in the sophisticated social circles Mr. Oliveria moves in. Unlike Dave Oliveria or Christie Woods, I live on the Coeur d’Alene Reservation and in Benewah County and I personally know many of the people he has insulted, and I know Bob Kirts. They are rural people; less impressed by money or power than by hard work, humility and loyalty to principle. They are not so easily offended by the inartfulness of words used as by the ill intent of the one who uses them. More here.


Signe: What? Me Pay?

Signe Wilkinson/Philadelphia Inquirer

Parting Shot — 2.23.10

Supporters of United States’s biathlete Sara Studebaker celebrate during the women’s 4x6 km biathlon relay at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Whistler, British Columbia, today. (AP Photo/Jens Meyer)

Question: Have any of you ever painted your body to show support for a sports team or athlete?

Wild Card/Tuesday — 2.23.10

Blogfest is now officially behind us. The Olympics are still with us. And the sun is shining on this Mother of All Nice Inland Northwest winters. I forgot to mention here that I encountered some of the area’s best and brightest walking along the waterfront Sunday, including Jon Mueller, and David Rawls and his wife, Hazel Bauman. Also, a group of kids were playing the board game war at City Beach. And the waterfront was busy with people biking, jogging, playing outdoor basketball, sightseeing, and just enjoying the sun. Have you been down to the waterfront yet this year? You can answer that question. Or use this Wild Card to start your own threads …

WSU Researchers Study Lack Of Sleep

Item: WSU researchers studying role lack of sleep plays in decisions/John Stucke, SR

More Info: Need another reason to get eight hours of sleep each night? Washington State University researchers say sleep-deprived people make poor decisions because they struggle to remember and interpret important information. Hans Van Dongen and Gregory Belenky have been delving into why a lack of sleep leads people to make poor decisions. Their findings, based on work completed at the Sleep and Performance Research Center at WSU Spokane, are generating some buzz for upending long-held beliefs.

Question: Do you sleep at least 8 hours at night? If you sleep less, do you consider yourself sleep deprived and prone to bad decisions?

PM Headlines — 2.23.10

Coeur d’Alene artist Joan Grey Smith is inspired by the grass that covers the Earth, which she describes as so ordinary yet primary to the existence of the world. Her prints and pastels on this subject will be featured in an exhibit titled “Grass Roots” on display March 1-26 in the North Idaho College Boswell Hall Corner Gallery. More here. (Artist Joan Grey Smith. Monotype. 24 x 18 inches).

APhoto Of The Day — 2.23.10

Yolanda Turner, 34, of Head Turner Styling Studio in Greensboro, N.C., puts a string of pearls around her model, Dionne Battle, 32, left, to enhance the Titanic-theme fantasy hairstyle she creates backstage before the Bronner Brothers Fantasy Hair Show in Atlanta on Sunday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/The Atlanta Journal & Constitution, Elissa Eubanks)

Top Cutlines: 

  • 1. Starr Kelso gets his head into stringing together a case in a feeble effort to rat out the corrupt KootCo elections machine — JBelle.
  • 2. James Cameron: “You idiot, I said I wanted a HEAD installed on the SHIP!” — JohnA.
  • 3. I can just hear those Titanic engineers now: “Sails! We should have put sails on the dang thing!” — rdunlap.
  • HM: CindyH & Pecky

PM Scanner Traffic — 2/23/10

  • 5:35 p.m. Caller smells natural gas @ H41 & Prairie/Rathdrum.
  • 5:19 p.m. Patrol officer reports an oil slick of 75 to 100 feet is spreading out from Honeysuckle Beach/Hayden. Hazmat team has been called.
  • 5:12 p.m. Caller wants an unwanted person removed from A Street & Idaho.
  • 3:25 p.m. Female on Columbia/Coeur d’Alene reports that a female in a black 2003 Hyundai threatened her.
  • 3:14 p.m. Wayne @ Super 1 wants two panhandlers removed from store property.
  • More below

Mansfield: More Labrador-Ward Bunk

 I felt as though I have just come from “A Tale of Two Sightings” of the Ward for Congress campaign yesterday. First I had a very positive and enjoyable conversation with Vaughn Ward, candidate for Congress in the 1st CD. We discussed many issues, including my recent observations regarding the the “Young Guns” program run by the National Republican Congressional Committee. It was a frank conversation and one from which we both benefitted, I would guess. I am looking forward to more discussions on these tough issues. Then, I received word from the Idaho Conservative Blogger site of a dust-up involving emails and intimations by folks associated with Vaughn’s campaign, that his opponent, Raul Labrador, would be dropping out of the race, shortly. This chatter is untrue/Dennis Mansfield. More here.

Question: What do you make of this latest dust-up between the Labrador and Ward camps?

Harwood Pulls Roadkill Bill

Rep. Dick Harwood, R-St. Maries, has asked the House Resources Committee to let him withdraw his road-kill bill, HB 562, and the committee agreed unanimously. “My intention with this bill was just to make it real simple, if you see a dead furbearer out on the road you could just pick it up,” Harwood told the committee. “I’ve had some emails that said I’m a terrible guy because I’m trying to pick up little furry animals and use them, and I got a lot from the conservation officers as well.” Last week, the Idaho Fish & Game Commission voted unanimously to oppose the bill, out of concern over how it would affect enforcement efforts when people have an animal carcass and claim they found it on the road/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Rich Piazza To Seek Re-election

Kootenai County Commissioner Rich Piazza announced his candidacy for a second term of office today, pledging close scrutiny in holding down expenses and taxes, maintaining infrastructure, promoting job creation and addressing county growth issues. “I’m a Reagan conservative,” he said, “but I serve ALL the people. In these difficult economic times, we have to watch every dollar we spend. We still have to maintain county infrastructure and we have to finds ways to do it without raising taxes. “I’m a fiscal conservative. We have to be wise in spending the people’s money/Piazza Election Announcement. More here.

Question: Has Piazza earned another term?

CdA May Rein In Outdoors Drinking

Item: Coeur d’Alene may cut back outdoors drinking: Proposal would cut one hour from sidewalk dining/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: The city of Coeur d’Alene might scale back late night drinking - at least outdoors. The city’s General Services Committee is recommending the city cut an hour off the time limit for serving alcohol to sidewalk-sitting patrons, from 11 to 10 p.m. The reduction proposal is one of several the committee forwarded to the City Council Monday for consideration in early March, as officials, business owners, residents and law enforcement agencies continue to work together on ways to make downtown safer heading into the summer season. “If we get a reputation downtown for the wild, wild West,” said John Bruning, city councilman and committee member, “it’ll drive business out.”

Question: What other steps should the city of Coeur d’Alene take to rein in the rowdy drinking crowd that congregates in downtown Coeur d’Alene late at night?

Ad Agency Rejects ‘Puppet Cleavage’

A promotional poster for the play “Avenue Q.” Puppet cleavage has been ruled out for advertising posters in Colorado Springs, Colo., bus shelters. Lamar Advertising rejected posters for a touring production of the Broadway show because they show the cleavage of a fuzzy pink puppet. Lamar account executive Jeff Moore says the company takes a conservative approach in Colorado Springs. The city is known for its political conservatism, and some conservative Christian groups have headquarters in the city. The poster has been replaced by one showing the face of another puppet. “Avenue Q” is a Tony-winning musical about twentysomething New Yorkers, both human and puppets, searching for life and love. (AP Photo/NewSpace Entertainment)

Question: Did Lamar Advertising make the right call re: puppet cleavage to keep the peace in Colorado Springs?

Panel Backs Hunter Secrecy Bill

The House Resources Committee has agreed to send HB 531 to the House’s amending order with committee amendments attached, to clear up a wording problem in the bill. The measure, from Rep. Judy Boyle, R-Midvale, would make all hunting licenses and tags secret, plus add criminal sanctions for any harassment of hunters. The names of those getting hunting licenses and tags long have been public record in Idaho. Several media representatives spoke against the bill, saying it was too broad and would close down records that reporters, hunters and fishermen long have legitimately used/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Do you support this bill as a means to protect wolf hunters? Or do you see it as overkill and yet another exemption to the growing list of public-records exemptions in Idaho?

Update: Hit House & Run

CPD Blues are still looking for the driver of a vehicle that plowed into a home on Master’s Drive Monday morning. Remember? It was an AM Scanner Traffic item. A patrol officer spotted the silver car driving erratically on Fairway Drive and then turn onto Masters w/o using the turn signal. The officer hit his lights, only to have the vehicle speed up to 50 mph, and then abruptly skid into a driveway at 2907 W. Masters Drive. The driver took off running, and the car continued to roll down a hill and into a neighbor’s house, creating a 4-foot-by-foot hole and snapping support beams. The driver eventually was spotted by another Fairway Forest subdivision resident, hiding behind her hot tub. When she confronted him, the man ran across the municipal golf course. Meanwhile, the passenger of the car provided little information about his friend. Later, police learned the driver’s family had kicked him out of the house over the Christmas holidays for using drugs and his lifestyle. You can read the redacted report (caution language) here.

Question: Can you see why the driver was kicked out of his house by his family?

M&M: Peter Fonda Not Easy Rider Now

I remember the night that I took my youngest brother, Doug, to see “Easy Rider.” We sat through the entire film - the chopper-preening, the mustachio-grandstanding, the smoke-huffing - only to be faced with that ridiculous ending, which would become from that point on a point of movie vocabluary of its own. “Oh that movie?” I would say of something that ended in gunfire and bloodletting, literal or virtual. “It’s OK … if you like an ‘Easy Rider’ ending.” I was so pissed that I almost crashed my VW Bug driving out of the San Diego theater, and then I courted multiple tickets while speeding east on Clairemont Mesa Boulevard. I’d just returned from Vietnam, and I was still full of the kind of supressed rage that came so naturally to me then and for years afterward. It seems like … yesterday. Yet it was 1970. Forty years ago. Is such a thing possible?/Dan Webster, Movies & More. More here.

Question: When did you last have one of those moments that starts … “It seems like only yesterday … ”

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 2.23.10

American missionary arrested on child kidnapping charges, Laura Silsby, 40, speaks to the press after leaving the courtroom in Port-au-Prince earlier today. Behind her is fellow missionary Charisa Coulter, 24, (orange blouse) and both are from Meridian. Now, it’s reported that they should be freed this week. See below. (AP Photo/Javier Galeano)

Extra! Moos Accepts WSU AD Job

Bill Moos said yes today to Washington State University’s offer to replace Jim Sterk as athletic director, a source confirmed to The Spokesman-Review. Moos told WSU president Elson S. Floyd he would accept an offer, made last Thursday. Terms of the deal have not been released, though other sources have said Moos was offered more than Sterk’s $300,000 in base salary, deferred compensation and other income. Washington State is expected to schedule a press conference in Pullman for Wednesday/Vince Grippi, SR.

Question: Are you glad to see Bill Moos get the WSU athletic director’s job? What should he have to do first?

High Noon: A Grand Old Flag

Ryan Bedford, the American flag seen in his hair, reacts after his race during the men’s 10,000 meter speed skating race at the Richmond Olympic Oval at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia, earlier today. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

Question: Does it bug you to see unorthodox displays of the American flag like the one above — you know, in people’s hair, or on the back pocket of their pants, or comprising a T-shirt, or elsewhere?

DFO: Not Ready For Retirement Yet

I didn’t think much about retirement until I turned 60 in November. Now, I find myself using the statement: “I don’t know how many more years I’ll be doing this.” Why am I bringing this up now? I thought about the future of Huckleberries while I enjoyed myself at Blogfest ‘10. Which was the sixth blogfest, including the four that have been held at Capones, Moon Dollar, and the Fort Ground Grill. Not that I plan to retire any time soon. But I did wonder how many more blogfests there will be. I compile Huckleberries Online for three reasons: It’s my job. It’s my hobby. And I feel an obligation to this community to provide an alternative voice to the Coeur d’Alene Press and the keyboard commandos of OpenCHRG and other individuals who are trying their best to stop the progress in this community. I’ve been here 25 years — long enough to see us go through the down times of the 1980s when Coeur d’Alene couldn’t pass a school bond and downtown Coeur d’Alene couldn’t fill its buildings. Naysayers ruled the roost in those days. And a second generation of them are trying to do the same today. In fact, today’s variety might be worse because they can attack at will via cyberspace and have the ear of the Coeur d’Alene Press. So I’ll keep showing up for work here, to provide balance and to have fun, as long as you keep showing up to see what shenanigans are going on around town/DFO.

Complete this sentence: You know it’s time to retire when …

Argonaut: Don’t Be Fooled By Scams

After years of taking millions from gullible Americans, the scam artists have taken to Craigslist. The old scams aren’t capable of bringing in the easy money like they used to, so the scam artists have evolved and found a new tactic. The new scam involves taking money from people trying to find affordable housing. Moscow and Pullman are perfect cities for this because of all the students. The swindler combs through recent real estate listings and takes the information on the houses to create a Craigslist ad for a rental — one that is much less expensive than those currently available. After e-mailing for more details, the potential renter receives a reply asking for a completed rental application and sometimes the money for the deposit. After reading one of these e-mails, it is hard to believe anyone is fooled, but it happens/Erin Harty, UI Argonaut. More here.

Question: Can you tell us about the last time someone tried to scam you?

HBO Poll: No To ‘Conscience’ Bill

  • Monday Poll: A supermajority of 79 of 110 respondents (72 percent) of you Berry Pickers opposed the Idaho House action this week to pass the abortion and emergency contraception “conscience” bill. Only 23 of 110 (21%) backed the House vote.
  • Today’s Poll (in the lefthand rail): Have you donated blood in the last year?

EOB: Senate Kills PERSI COLA Bill

The hearing set for 1:30 on HCR 42, the measure to block a scheduled 1 percent COLA for state retirees, has been canceled - which means the bill is now dead. Sen. John Andreason, R-Boise, chairman of the Senate Commerce & Human Resources Committee, said, “It seemed like the thing to do - this was the best way to handle it.” He added, “I have a lot of faith in the (PERSI) board. They’ve always done a good job. We’re just following their recommendation”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

1st Superman Copy Brings $1M

In this image released by Comic Connect Corp., a the June 1938 cover of “Action Comics” that first featured Superman, is shown. Originally selling for 10 cents, the rare comic book has sold for a record-smashing $1M in New York. Story here. (AP Photo/Comic Connect Corp.)

Question: Which comic books did you read as a kid?

Argonaut: Driving Away From Blood

Those people who donate blood are a noble lot. It is a selfless act to donate not just blood, but the accompanying time and effort. Even with the promise of cookies and juice in the end, my fear of needles and complete uneasiness in seeing blood prevent me from even contemplating donating. It is also quite bothersome when I have to observe other people giving blood. On a semi-regular basis, a blood drive takes place in the middle of the Teaching and Learning Center for anyone who is unfortunate enough to stumble in to see. There is something not right about holding a blood drive in the middle of a common area. There has to be some other place for these blood drives to take place. They should not stop, but there is no reason they cannot take place in a sheltered space where innocent passers-by do not have to observe the process/Cheyenne Hollis, UI Argonaut. More here.

Question: Are you bothered by the sight of blood? And/or: When did you last give blood?

AM Scanner Traffic — 2.23.10

  • 11:24 a.m. EMTs are bringing a pregnant 21YO domestic abuse victim to KMC.
  • 11:21 a.m. Deputies have decided that a burglary has occurred @ the Athol residence on Victory Lane (10:29 a.m. entry).
  • 11:07 a.m. Steven @ Western Ranch & Howard/Athol wants to see an officer re: a suspicious person who came to his door Monday.
  • 11:04 a.m. EMTs need help lifting a 500-pound-plus patient in a Miller/Post Falls home.
  • 10:43 a.m. Richard in 4100 block of Seasons/Athol reports he’s getting harassing text messages.
  • 10:41 a.m. Female reports that she was almost run off the road by a red, 2-door VW n/b @ Huetter and Prairie.
  • 10:29 a.m. Deputies are waiting for backup outside a home @ Victory & Shadow/Athol, where the door has been broken open.
  • 10:08 a.m. Timothy reports to PFPD Blue HQ that two vehicles have been stolen from him — one is being driven without his permission and the other is in a shed on Lark.
  • 9:58 a.m. A female with a litter of puppies has asked the local Humane Society if it can take them because Benewah County’s shelter doesn’t have room.
  • 9:10 a.m. Rodney at adult probation is waiting to go to jail after a warrant is served on him.
  • 8:38 a.m. A Hayden Meadows Elementary parent reports that a black dog growled at his daughter while she was waiting at a bus stop.

Political Sandbox — 2/23/10

Rhonda Smith of Sevierville, Tenn. pauses as she testifies about her Lexus’ apparent sudden acceleration earlier today on Capitol Hill in Washington while appearing before the the House Oversight and Investigations subcommittee. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

You can use this Wild Card to discuss politics in general.

A Closer Look At Brannon’s Request

I gave you Huckleberry Pickers a lot to process Monday when I posted City Council wannabe Jim Brannon’s request for 48 different kinds of written, handwritten, and online documents from city and county elections officials in his never-ending quest to overturn his loss to incumbent Mike Kennedy. So I thought I’d break down the significant parts. You can read the nature of Brannon’s request, filed by his attorney Starr Kelso, here. You can read the conclusion to county Civil Deputy John Cafferty here.

Question: Cafferty mentions that the elections officials would conservatively need 6 months to provide the documents requested by Brannon, at a cost of $30,000. He mentions that the judge could raise the $500 bond paid by the plaintiffs to cover the cost. Do you think the judge should do so, if he orders the defendants to provide the documentation?

Please Call The CdA Press …

… and tell its online guy that it is now Tuesday, Feb. 23, not Monday, Feb. 22. It’s 9:35 in the morning and the online page still features yesterday’s stories — not that there’s a lot in the paper today. And you can tell the Press switchboard that Huckleberries Online sent you …

Study: Girls Drive As Badly As Boys

Although teenage boys have long taken the rap for being the most reckless drivers on the road, teenage girls are now gaining that reputation for themselves. According to “Shifting Teen Attitudes: The State of Teen Driving 2009,” a report released by The Allstate Foundation, girls admit to speeding, driving aggressively, and using a cell phone or adjusting music while driving more often than boys. Julie Wernau, writing for the Chicago Tribune, points out that auto insurance rates for girls have responded to the trend. Thomas DeFalco, an actuary at the New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance Co., told Wernau that 20 years ago, it cost twice as much to insure teen boys as girls, but it now costs 20 to 30% more/Finding Dulcinea. More here.

Question: Were you a decent driver as a teen-ager? Are/were your teens good drivers?

JillK: Curling In The Olympics? C’mon

Okay, people. I’m going to say what a lot of you want to say: curling is funny. And it’s even funnier when it’s in the Olympics. Unfortunately for anyone sitting near me during a “match,” curling, like sumo wrestling, cracks me up. The attack that gets me in its grip is guaranteed to ruin any meaningful Olympic experience, unless you enjoy being near a gasping, howling woman with tears streaming down her face. It might be mean to laugh at curling – at least at the U.S. team, but who gives a rip. I just can’t take it, man. Whoever let curling into the Olympics must have been seriously hammered at the time/Jill Kuraitis, New West. More here.

Question: Should curling be an Olympic sport?

AM Headlines — 2.23.10

David Cheney has buried his two dogs in his backyard on the 3300 block of east 55th Ave in Spokane, Wa. The dogs, Abby and Snoopy, died after someone feed them poisoned meatballs. Meghann Cuniff’s Sirens & Gavels story here. (Dan Pelle/SR)

Question: What would be a proper punishment for the individual caught poisoning these dogs?

Simpson Raises ‘Climate-gate’ Issue

“EPA’s public response to the so-called ‘Climate-gate’ issue is unsatisfactory at best,” said Simpson. “Idahoans are frustrated that we are basing major, far-reaching policy changes and significant funding increases on scientific data that has been called into question, but their concerns are being summarily dismissed by the EPA, which simply claims that ‘the science is sound’”/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Should the Obama administration ignore concerns raised in the “climate-gate” controversy or ignore them and push ahead with new greenhouse gas regulations?

Argonaut: Otter’s Methods Juvenile

In a recent guest editorial distributed to Idaho media, Otter admitted he never actually planned on cutting IPTV’s funding. Apparently, he asked every agency to find ways to cut spending, and when IPTV told him there was no wiggle room in their budget, he made the threat to light a fire under them. If this is true (there’s always the possibility he’s just covering up a bad idea), it’s a bad policy. If Otter wanted to pressure IPTV to trim the budget, he should have done it in private. When the governor uses the press to pressure state agencies, it looks like the state is run by a headless group of bureaucrats who use the press to tattle to the people about each other. Otter and the entire state government have a very serious task in front of them. Let’s see some cooperation, not mindless bluffing/Jeffrey Reznicek, UIdaho Argonaut. More here.

Question: What do you make of Otter’s claim that he never intended to cut funding for IPTV, after threatening to do so? Does he deserve the criticism leveled against him by the Argonaut?

Trib: Government Secrecy Knocking

One of the best ideas ever to come from Idaho was the state’s public records law. It presumes you have access to government records. Access keeps the process honest. The system is constantly under assault. In the two decades since the law took effect, legislators have tweaked it here, trimmed it there. Now, they’re trying to pull from public view the name of anybody who purchased a hunting or fishing license or game tag. That’s because an opponent of the state’s wolf hunt, Rob Hobson of Boise, posted names of those who shot a wolf this season on his Web site. Some hunters say they have been harassed/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Should the state of Idaho be allowed to keep the names of those who buy hunting and fishing licenses from the public?

Heller: New Rules, Same Bite

Joe Heller/Hellertoons

Brown Helps Dems Break Filibuster

The election of Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) energized Republicans as it ensured that he would give them a critical 41st vote to help them block Democrats and filibuster key legislation. So in the second vote of his Senate career, Brown promptly voted to help Democrats cut off a Republican filibuster of a $15 billion jobs bill engineered by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV). “It’s not a perfect bill,” Brown said shortly after voting. “I was comfortable with that vote.” Brown defended his vote, saying he was concerned about putting people back to work. “Anytime you can make a small step, it’s still a step,” said Brown/FoxNews. More here.

Question: Still wild about that new Republican senator from Massachusetts?

Parting Shot — 2.22.10

Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Md. is reflected in a window on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, as he answers reporters questions following a news conference to discuss the upcoming jobs bill. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Wild Card/Monday — 2.22.10

I’ll play this regular Wild Card now — to be followed by the new Political Wild Card in a few minutes. Several individuals at Blogfest ‘10 told me how much they appreciate the Political Wild Card, to keep the daily struggle for supremacy between our Left Bank and our Right Bank out of the regular threads. I’ll go back through the suggested names and pick one for the new Wild Card. Now, for the regular W.C.

Hart Proposes 8.25% Sales Tax

At a time when Idaho legislators have been loath to propose tax increases, Athol Rep. Phil Hart has introduced legislation to bump Idaho’s sales tax from the current 6 percent up to 8.25 percent. The tradeoff: He’d also like to eliminate the income tax on all earned income. “I think when you tax something, you get less of it,” said the third-term Republican. “We are heavily taxing jobs, and we have less jobs.” That’s just one of a dozen bills Hart has proposed so far this year, his busiest legislative session yet. Most have something to do with constitutional rights or privacy/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Would you accept a sales tax of 8.25 percent if it meant doing away with all income tax on earned income?

PM Headlines — 2.22.10

North Idaho College Residence Hall senior resident adviser Jeff Howard, from Bonners Ferry, feeds Randy and Earl (named after the brothers on the TV show My Name is Earl). The two ducks have made a home in the landscaping just outside the main doors of the NIC Residence Hall. The students living in the hall, many of whom often miss their own pets at home, feed and water the ducks and ensure their safety by keeping them out of the busy parking lot. (Stacy Hudson/Press Room photo) 

APhoto Of The Day — 2.22.10

Veterinary doctors perform a tooth surgery on Socrates, a 20-year-old tiger at Villa Lorena animal shelter in Cali, Colombia, Sunday. Socrates, once a tiger from a street circus, was handed over to the shelter by its former caretakers. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Christian Escobar Mora)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Sam the Reporter and The Lovely Kathryn describe how difficult it was to convince Sam’s mom Truly to attend blogfest. (and we’re glad she came.) — Nic.
  • 2. A glimpse into the dreams of Elin Woods — Idaho Dad.
  • 3. flossing to pose for hbo’s photo of the day — Pecky.
  • HM: CoeurGenX

In The News: Bulldozing Home

This undated photo released by Terry Hoskins, who allegedly bulldozed his own home after a bank began foreclosure proceedings, shows a bulldozer standing near Hoskins’ home in Moscow, Ohio. (AP Photo/Terry Hoskins via WLWT)

Question: Do you know of anyone who has lost his/her home during this Great Recession?

PM Scanner Traffic — 2.22.10

  • 5:13 p.m. A 60ish female is suffering a seizure in the Food Court at Costco while her family shops somewhere else in the store.
  • 5:02 p.m. A female is slumped over her mechanized wheelchair @ H95 & I-90.
  • 4:17 p.m. An 87YO female is threatening to “make quite a scene” if she’s forced to leave her residence on Berg Court.
  • 4:01 p.m. Lights are flashing red and yellow in all directions @ H41 & Poleline/Post Falls.
  • 3:27 p.m. Two female neighbors are arguing profusely in 2200 block of Parkridge/Athol.
  • More below

HBO Blogosphere — 2.22.10

Sam Taylor and his lovely wife, Kat, are expecting their first baby later this year. But that didn’t stop them from making the long trek from western Washington to Blogfest 2010 at the Fort Ground Grill Saturday. Sam is a former reporter for The Spokesman-Review. Nic of Rants, Raves, & Random Thoughts snapped this photo.

County: Jim Brannon On ‘Witch Hunt’

Civil Deputy Prosecutor John Cafferty said it would take six months and cost $30,000 to provide the broad range of documentation, including office e-mails of elections officials, sought by attorney Starr Kelso (pictured) for losing candidate Jim Brannon. Who is trying to overturn the results of his 5-vote loss to incumbent Mike Kennedy. In the 14-page document filed with the court Friday, Cafferty labeled Kelso’s request to provide 48 different kinds of documentation a “witch hunt” that was beyond the scope of the lawsuit “and can be of no purpose other than to embarrass, harass, and annoy Kootenai County.” The county handled the election process on behalf of the city of Coeur d’Alene. Said Cafferty: “To allow the present witch hunt to continue in its existing fashion not only flies in the face of the Idaho Constitution and the Legislators’ clearly articulated intent, but is a large and irretractable step down a slippery slope which any disgruntled candidate will be happy to lead future courts.” You can read Cafferty’s response here. And: Starr Kelso’s request.

Question: What do you make of Cafferty’s response to Kelso’s request for the broad range of election documentation?

House OKs Mountain Bike License

HB 486, creating a new special license plate to benefit mountain biking trails, has passed the House on a 49-18 vote. “This bill is purely revenue-generating for the state,” said Rep. Brian Cronin, D-Boise, the bill’s lead sponsor. Each special plate sold will initially send $22 to the state highway fund and $15 to the state Department of Parks and Recreation for trail work; in subsequent years, renewals will send $13 to the highway fund and $12 to parks/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Because You Asked …

OtisG/Otis G. Experience kept track of the agenda for his two children and significant other during a bike ride that found its way to Blogfest ‘10 at the Fort Ground Grill Saturday.

… Yes, Sgt. Christie Wood brought a flat full of cupcakes to Blogfest ‘10 to celebrate the outcome of city council elections past and ongoing — and to poke fun at the keyboard commandos who dismissively once referred to her as “Sgt. Cupcake.”

… And, yes, a Coeur d’Alene Press reporter infiltrated the Huckleberries Online crowd for a few moments late in the blogfest, sat at the bar for a bit, and then left w/o introducing himself to me. He’ll remain nameless here b/c I don’t want the lad to get in trouble from the higher ups simply because he wanted to hang out with a fun crowd for a change.

Local Tea Party Leader Visits HBO

RE: NYTimes spotlights local Tea Partyers/David Stout, New York Times

Pam Stout, Sandpoint Tea Party president, on Huckleberries: “I never expected to make any front page, but especially the NY Times.  I am only one of many Tea Partiers who believe we have an obligation as Americans to honor our founders and the Constitution.  If you aren’t concerned about our nations future - please take yor head out of the sand. I think that the Republicans won’t co-opt the Tea parties, but the Tea Parties may take back the party.  God bless America.”

Question: Is the Tea Party movement the only one concerned about the future of America?

They Are The Champions — Again

Coeur d’Alene Vikings State Girls 5A Basketball Champions over the Lewiston Bengals 51-45 at the Idaho Center in Nampa. The Viks picked up their third state championship in a row with the victory over Lewiston Saturday night. (Steve Conner/Idaho Sports)

Question: Have you ever been part of a championship team?

Kamm: Writing Off Ponzi Losses?

Kamm: What’s your take on the bill offered by ID Sen Brent Hill allowing ‘victims’ of Ponzi schemes to deduct ALL their losses from ID State Taxes even averaging them over years so that every penny lost is deductible. I have sympathy for their financial problems but haven’t they heard … “Buyer Beware”? “If it looks too good to be true, it probably is” and “Poor planning on your part doesn’t create an emergency on my part”…? In this era of ‘trimmed to the bones’ state budget should all residents bear the loss of funds because of mistakes made by a few? Just wondering.

Question: Should victims of Ponzi schemes be able to write off all their losses?

Budget ‘Wolves’ Seek Sympathy

Lodge summed up the story and then compared it to the situation JFAC faces in trying to balance the state’s budget amid an economic decline. In this version of the tale, told from the wolf’s perspective, he didn’t do anything wrong to the three little pigs or their homes of straw and sticks. Instead, the wolf claims he was framed and wound up in jail. He didn’t huff and puff and blow the houses down. Instead, he went to the pigs’ homes hoping to borrow a cup of sugar. And the wolf, having a cold, sneezed a couple times, which blew down the house of straw and the house of sticks. So what’s all this have to do with the Legislature? JFAC is searching for ways to trim the budget like the wolf was looking for a cup of sugar, Lodge told JFAC. “You are trying to find every possible way to find savings,” (Sen. Patti Ann) Lodge, pictured, said/Ben Botkin, Twin Falls Times-News. More here.

Question: Do you feel sorry for Idaho legislators who have the inenviable job of balancing the state budget in time of great recession?

SC: Don’t Tread On My Roadkill

I come from rustic people over eastern Idaho way, so’s you can just about figure how aggravated I got the other day when I heard from state Rep. Dick Harwood, R-St. Maries, that me and mine have been criminals since Reagan was a Democrat. I’m talkin’ about pickin’ up road kill off the highway here in the great and sovereign state of Idaho. Turns out it’s illegal. It’s the state’s property. The hell you say. Does that mean the Department of Fish and Game really wants all those white-line coyote carcasses back? It’s cultural imperialism, is what it is, against those of us in the sprung-out-couch-and-rusted-washin’-machine-on-the front-lawn crowd. Just like when Jerome, Idaho, run all the trailer houses older than 40 years old right oughtta town/Steve Crump, Twin Falls Times-News. More here.

Question: Would you eat a dish made from roadkill?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 2.22.10

Nicole Turner, 12, of Velocity Gymnastics out of Hamilton Montana kept an eye on the competition during Great West Gym Fest at the Coeur d’Alene Resort on Friday. Several hundred gymnast are in town for the meet that runs through Sunday. (Kathy Plonka/SR)

Hollywood Video Stores To Close

Three Spokane-North Idaho Hollywood Video stores will close in several weeks, the company has announced on its Web site. They are: University City, 10614 E. Sprague, Airway Heights, 12622 W. Sunset Hwy, and Coeur d’Alene, 560 W. Kathleen St. Parent company Hollywood Entertainment Corp., based in Wilsonville, Ore., is restructuring operations following a chapter 11 bankruptcy filing earlier this year. The company has not established closing dates for the three stores. Five other Hollywood Video stores in the Spokane area are not closing, according to the company Web site/Spokesman-Review. More here.

Question: Where do you pick up you videos?

HNoon: RiverPark Square Kudos

Moscow Minidoka: RiverPark Square is “the most pleasant one to visit.” I didn’t say I go there to meet my basic needs. My wife’s parents live in Spokane. When we visit, it’s a nice treat to leave the kids with the in-laws and get a meal and movie in downtown Spokane. I think that the restaurants in the surrounding area are pretty decent, and the movie theater is nice for a megaplex. Yes, there are many “high-end” retailers at RiverPark Square, but I’m not there to buy $150 pants. I’m there to people watch, enjoy the ambiance, and to maybe buy a pair of nice slacks for work on sale at The Gap or Macy’s. In general, I don’t shop at the malls in Spokane/CDA. So when I do go to the mall, I like it to be a pleasant experience. Each time I’ve gone to NorthTown or the Valley Mall, they’ve been overrun by idle teenagers and hoodlums. That’s not usually the case at RiverPark Square.

Question: Which Inland Northwest mall is your favorite? Why?

Best Wipeout of Olympic Games?

Ted Piccard of France, left and Daron Rahlves of the USA, right crash out during the men’s skicross 8th final at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia, Sunday.. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Question: Which Winter Olympics moment is your favorite so far — now that we’re more than halfway finished with the event?

AM Scanner Traffic — 2.22.10

  • 11:44 a.m. A caller reports he was tailgated by a semi-truck whose driver made obscene gestures before turning off on H41.
  • 11:35 a.m. Transients are hanging out behind a business @ 213 W. Appleway.
  • 11:17 a.m. A dog is running into traffic on I-90 @ M/P 13 (Fourth Street).
  • 10:46 a.m. An elderly woman pushing a stroller along H95, north of Hayden, tells officer who stops to check on her welfare that he should know who she is.
  • 10:36 a.m. Lakeland Junior High reports a juvenile problem.
  • 10:26 a.m. Male left message w/the Hayden substation, claiming his ex-wife left a text threatening suicide.
  • 10:16 a.m. Corinne wants to talk to an officer re: an animal noise citation.
  • 9:58 a.m. Silent holdup alarm @ Sterling Savings on Cornerstone/Hayden turns out to be a false alarm.
  • 9:54 a.m. A female w/long strawberry blond hair is darting in and out of traffic in s/b lane @ H95 & Kathleen, trying to get hit.
  • 9:33 a.m. Curtis is in KCSD office w/questions re: a bad check.
  • 9:26 a.m. Donald in Athol wants to speak to an officer re: offensive texts sent to his daughter.
  • 8:51 a.m. CPD Blue is chasing a motorist who crashed his vehicle down an embankment into a driveway on Masters, near Atlas, and then ran. Police caught a companion. The individual believed to be running is described as 6 feet tall, wearing a black hoodie w/white letting. A fairway forest resident reported a shot time later that a male matching that description ran across her back yard and across the municipal golf course.

RS: Talk Radio Influence On Wane?

Is the clout of talk radio diminishing? Political people certainly act as if it is powerful enough, considering the bows and scrapes given to Rush Limbaugh from anyone on the right who momentarily crosses him. But as with broadcast television, it may be a lesser influence now than it was, given the competition from the web and elsewhere. Seattle’s Blatherwatch recalled how “KVI was at the forefront of the 1994 Republican resurgence, the pre-Waco militia strutting. John Carlson and Kirby Wilbur organized and ran initiative signature campaign on-air and almost single-handedly got a measure on the ballot (later rejected by the voters) that defunded roads. The US Supreme Court upheld their right to wage that campaign on public airwaves, a huge win for talk radio. Wilbur’s now gone, and Carlson is talking to the crickets in the toughest time slot in town (3-6p)/Randy Stapilus, Ridenbaugh Press. More here.

Question: Is the clout of talk radio diminishing? Can you cite examples to support your conclusion?

HBO Poll: ‘Hanging’ Remark Poisonous

  • HBO Poll: 81 of 245 respondents (33%) to the weekend poll said a comment made by a Clarkston Tea Party leader re: hanging Patty Murray shows how poisonous political rhetoric has become. Another 75 (31%) dismissed the comment as simply a figure of speech. 58 (24%) said the comment was way over the line, while 25 (10%) voted that the other side says crazy things, too. In other words, a majority of 57% disapproved strongly of the comment.
  • Today’s Poll (in lefthand rail): Do you support the abortion and emergency contraception bill that was approved by the House State Affairs Committee today 6-3?

Political Wild Card — 2.22.10

In this Feb. 21, 2009 file photo, former eBay Chief Executive and California Republican Gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman, accompanied by former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, speaks to reporters in Sacramento, Calif. Romney is ready to step back into the public spotlight after working earnestly behind the scenes the past two years to help his fellow Republicans, and lay the groundwork for a second presidential campaign. (AP Photo/Steve Yeater)

Wild Card: You can discuss Mitt Romney’s potential as a GOP presidential candidate or anything else political with this Wild Card …

Panel OKs Abortion ‘Conscience’ Bill

The hearing on SB 1353, the abortion and emergency contraception “conscience” bill, has been stretching on for nearly two hours already this morning in the Senate State Affairs Committee. So far, among the many testifying on the bill have been the Catholic diocese of Idaho, in favor of the bill; the Idaho Women’s Network, against it; Right to Life of Idaho, in favor; and the ACLU of Idaho, against. Here, anti-abortion activist David Ripley, lobbyist for “Idaho Chooses Life,” answers questions about the bill from members of the Senate committee. Christ Troupis, attorney for the group, also answered numerous questions about the bill. Troupis noted that the Idaho Trial Lawyers Association is opposing the bill, saying it may interfere with patient malpractice lawsuits/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here. And here.

Question: Do you support this legislation?

Top Drinking Spots In Downtown CdA

Item: A powerful thirst in Coeur d’Alene: Three downtown bars rank in Idaho’s top five for purchasing alcohol/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d’Alene Press

More Info: In term of bars buying booze from the state, three downtown Coeur d’Alene watering holes are cracking Idaho’s top five halfway through fiscal year 2010. Not too surprising, since the same three locales having been hovering in Idaho’s top 10 for several years. Number one so far on the Idaho State Liquor Division’s list of top liquor bottle buyers is the Iron Horse bar and grill on Sherman Avenue. Down the street is the third-place finisher, The Coeur d’Alene Resort, while the Sherman Avenue hangout the Beacon pub and former Brix restaurant, currently the Icon, is fifth.

Question: Is this something of which to be proud — that three of the top five drinking spots in Idaho are all located within 3 blocks of one another in downtown Coeur d’Alene?

Hall: Tea Parties & PETA Twits

Dogs and tea parties remind us that we are more likely to fight for something we believe in if we can snatch a few moments of personal publicity from the effort. People who attend meetings of the Tea Party movement are determined to turn their country in a better direction, but they also love standing up in a crowd of their fellow agitators and orating like geriatric Patrick Henrys. Defeating incumbents is invigorating but lapping up the limelight is intoxicating. “Look, Ma, I’m on the TV!” The Tea Partiers are about 90 percent like me. They are the same lovely pale pasty white that I am. They are opinionated as all get out, just like me. And they are way past puberty - by 50 or more years. But there is something surprisingly different this time about my fellow geezers. They are not usually so demonstrative, so showy and so brassy in their utterances/Bill Hall, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: What do you make of Bill Hall’s description of tea partiers — “about 90 percent like me. They are the same lovely pale pasty white that I am. They are opinionated as all get out, just like me.”

AM Headlines — 2.22.10

At Blogfest ‘10, Digger presented Councilman Mike Kennedy with a T-shirt that’s guaranteed to make certain heads pop around the city of Coeur d’Alene. It’s a perfect gift for that key board commando on your Christmas list.

CWater: Fun Blogfest, Let’s Do It Again

Clean Water: We need to do this (Blogfest) more often. I really enjoyed that in this diverse crowd, we found much commonality. It is hard these days to find people who can actually engage in intelligent conversation. Whether it is from my conservative perspective or to someone else’s liberal views, I found that we are more alike than not. Perhaps we need to meet in a park where we will actually be able to hear each other. We are too loud to be allowed indoors. How about a Blogfest 2010 & 1/2?

DFO: How about a shout out to Steve & Marie Widmyer and their employees who set the stage at Fort Ground Grill for another successful blogfest? If you haven’t checked out Fort Ground Grill since the Widmyers took over, you should. Also, I’m humbled by the good many of you who took time off from a viewtiful Saturday afternoon to join us for food and fellowship, particularly the many newbies who were there. Clean Water, one of the newbies, is right. People usually agree on more things than they disagree. Huckleberries Online continues to try to be a catalyst to help people understand that. Now, onto year 7 of this online experiment.

OTV Review: Nosworthy’s

The Ground Round attained legendary status early on with its gargantuan burgers that were so fresh they still cried “moo” and omelets big, bright and happy enough to put the sun out of work for the rest of the morning. I can’t recall the exact details of what brought about the name change, but I’m guessing it had something to do with a little legal jazz involving the national restaurant chain of the same name. The forced rechristening to “Nosworthy’s Hall of Fame” was literally the only noticeable change, and the magic remained intact. Nearly every visible surface is covered with owner Dale Nosworthy’s impressive collection of sports memorabilia, so the name fits the place like a baseball mitt/OrangeTV, Get Out! North Idaho. More here.

DFO: How about reviewing Fourth Street Pantry (the all-night shop across from the federal building in downtown Coeur d’Alene) next?

Aryan Nations Moving To Oregon?

Originally published Friday night

Leaders of the Aryan Nations in Idaho say they want to move the headquarters of their white supremacist movement to Grant County. Paul R. Mullet, who called himself national director of the movement, was in John Day this week, looking at property to buy for a new “national compound.” … Mullet, wearing a uniform shirt with a swastika patch on it, said the group’s goal is to create a homeland for white people. … Mullet said his group’s current headquarters is in Athol, Idaho, but it doesn’t have the attributes of a real compound. If they can find the right building in John Day, he said, they will be able to provide barracks and space for training recruits, as well as a place for meetings and gatherings/Scotta Callister, Blue Mountain Eagle. More here.

Question: Anyone going to shed a tear if these guys pull up stakes from Athol and head to John Day, Ore.?

Signe: Under Re-Construction

Signe Wilkinson/Philadelphia Inquirer

Weekend Wild Card — 2.20.10

So what did you think of the new — for lack of a better name at the moment — Political Wild Card? I noticed it attracted 56 comments while the regular Wild Card had only 14 or so. But it did work to keep generic political talk from taking over the various threads throughout the day. I was a little skeptical. But I sorta liked it. Feel free to weigh in now about the new feature — or in the days to come. We had another terrific Blogfest Saturday, with Steve & Marie Widmyer hosting us in style at their Fort Ground Grill. I didn’t get a head count. But I’d figure 55 - 65 people wandered in at some time during the day. I got to put faces to three pseudonyms — Clean Water, jt, and Meme13. I’ll wait until Monday to run the photos of Digger presenting MikeK one of his “I (Heart) Mike Kennedy” T-shirts to make sure our blurking fans at gasp together. Until then, I’llre- post this Wild Card for your entertainment …

Dogwalk Covers Blogfest ‘10

We here in Coeur ‘d Alene, Idaho, have a very unique community of bloggers. Led for the past six years by the Spokesman Review’s Dave Oliveria, it has gone through a lot. It waxes and wanes according to the mood of Dave and those who contribute. It is often contentious. It is often funny. It reflects the community from which it originates. It is unique. Every year we have a Blog Fest, a time for all of us to put aside our pseudonyms and politics and celebrate that which binds us. Blogging. I’ve missed one over the years. In that period of time, last year, people have come and gone. Today I had the pleasure of greeting old friends and meeting new ones/Dogwalk Musings. More here (including a 2-minute video of Blogfest ‘10.

Gonzaga 72, Pepperdine 54

 Gonzaga forward Elias Harris, of Germany, center, fight for a loose ball with Pepperdine forward Mychel Thompson, left and center Denis Agre, of Bulgaria, right, during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday in Malibu, Calif. (AP Photo/Gus Ruelas)

Gonzaga rebounded from a disappointing conference defeat with a rout.Matt Bouldin had 18 points and five assists, and Elias Harris scored 13 points to lead Gonzaga (No. 9 ESPN/USA Today, No. 13 AP) to a 72-54 victory over Pepperdine on Saturday night.Robert Sacre and Steven Gray scored 12 points apiece and Sacre added a career-high six blocks for the Bulldogs (22-5, 10-2 West Coast), who won 14 of 16 games.On Thursday night, Gonzaga lost 72-66 to Loyola Marymount for only the third time since 1996.”I just challenged them,” Bulldogs coach Mark Few said of his players. “You can’t approach these games like that. You’re getting everybody’s best shot.”Bouldin said that Few’s approach worked/Associated Press. More here.

Coeur d’Alene Beats Lewiston To 3-Peat

Coeur d’Alene’s Carli Rosenthal (24) blocks the shot of Lewiston’s Tanis Fuller, left, in the 5A Girls State Championship basketball game on Saturday in Nampa.  Coeur d’Alene won 51-45.  (AP Photo/Matt Cilley)

In the decorated trophy-gobbling run that is Coeur d’Alene High girls basketball, another star was born at the 2010 State 5A tournament. It’s a good thing, too, because had freshman Caelyn Orlandi not stepped up Saturday, Coeur d’Alene wouldn’t have captured a third consecutive championship. “She’s my MVP,” CdA coach Dale Poffenroth said after the Vikings rallied to a 51-45 win over rival Lewiston at the Idaho Center. “I know (Carli) Rosenthal had a ton of points, but we don’t win without (Orlandi). She made all the difference in the world.” The 5-foot-8 guard finished with 13 points, 11 in the fourth quarter including 7 of 8 free throws/Greg Lee, SportsLink. More here.

Blogfest ‘10 @ Fort Ground Grill Today

It’s finally arrived — Blogfest ‘10. Which celebrates the 6th anniversary of Huckleberries Online. This year, we’re holding Blogfest in Steve Widmyer’s Fort Ground Grill, near North Idaho College, in the historic Fortground area. It’ll start at 2 and run to 4 p.m. today. The Spokesman-Review will underwrite the food and pop. But you have to buy your own beer. Steve is planning a taco bar, chicken wings, and sundry other goodies. HBO blogosphere bloggers, commenters and blurkers are welcome. Come and meet the personalities behind the pseudonyms you see here every day. (H/T: Dogwalk Musings for official Blogfest ‘10 poster)

Blogfest Menu:

  • Taco Buffet
  • Habenero and Buffalo Chicken Wings
  • Pork and Seeds
  • Veggies
  • Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • Assorted Soft Drinks.

Boiseans Grateful For 71YO ‘Down’s’ Son

It isn’t Edgar Call’s age that makes him unique, though it’s certainly unusual. No, family members say, there’s a lot more to Edgar than being one of the country’s oldest living men with Down syndrome. “When you’re looking at Edgar, you’re looking at an angel,” his “sister” Annika Rau said. “And the same could be said for my parents for what they’ve done for him.” Her parents, Van and Veanne Elg, took Edgar in on the advice of Van Elg’s mother, then working at a group home where Edgar was living. “She thought he’d be good for us,” Veanne Elg said. “We weren’t sure at the time. He was a complete stranger. But we met him and fell in love with him.” Edgar has been living with the Elgs for 17 years now. In August, he’ll be 71/Tim Woodward (pictured), Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Does a member of your family or a friend have Down Syndrome? What is your relationship like?

Tea Partyers React ‘Hanging’ Statement

One local Tea Party organizer is calling the media attention brought on Dianne Capps after she stated she would like to hang U.S. Sen. Patty Murray a way of discrediting the movement, while another organizer believes Capps’ statement will not harm the movement. Clarkston’s Doug Schurman, who organized last Saturday’s Tea Party rally at the Asotin County Fairgrounds with Capps, was not present when she made the comment about Murray, but said, “I cannot even imagine this thing being in a vicious context.” Capps had been stalling for time during Saturday’s rally, Schurman said, and was uneasy about speaking in front of a crowd of about 500 people. It was at that time she compared Jake Spoon from “Lonesome Dove” to Murray, D-Wash. “What happened to Jake when he ran with the wrong crowd?” Capps asked. “What happened to Jake when he ran with the wrong crowd? He got hung. And that’s what I want to do with Patty Murray”/Brandon Macz, Lewiston Tribune. More here

Question: What will be the fallout from Capps’ statement about hanging U.S. Sen. Patty Murray?

Idahoan Jailed Over Jury Questionnaire

A 2nd District Court judge ordered a Lewiston man to jail earlier this week for failing to fill out a juror qualification questionnaire. John G. Wright was found in contempt of court after he allegedly refused to fill out a questionnaire sent each month to county residents who are picked for jury duty. Wright reportedly ignored the document, and a warning letter sent as a reminder to prospective jurors. Judge Jeff M. Brudie called Wright into court Thursday. Brudie told Wright the law mandates he fill out the form to determine if he qualifies for jury service, and that he was not aware of any exemption. “I rescinded all my signatures on any and all past contracts; I am not a registered voter,” Wright responded, according to a recording of the hearing/Brad Gary, Lewiston Tribune. More here

Question: Was the judge heavy-handed in ordering the Lewiston juror to jail for refusing to fill out a jury qualification questionnaire?

Popkey: Could Nike Swoosh Into Idaho?

Nike founder Phil Knight is hopping mad at $727 million in tax increases on corporations and the wealthy in Oregon. Idaho leaders long to catch their rich neighbor’s eye. Idaho has wooed Nike before - a revelation offered by Lt. Gov. Brad Little, who salivates at the prospect of landing one of the world’s best-known brands. “Phil Knight was up front: Don’t change the tax code, and if you do, we’re going to do something,” Little said. Knight hasn’t expressed interest yet, Little said. “But we’re gonna call him.” Knight is No. 24 on Forbes’ list of richest Americans, with a net worth of $9.5 billion. He gave $100,000 to the campaign to defeat Measures 66 and 67. Both tax bills passed Jan. 26/Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman. More here. (AP file photo: Phil Knight, Nike Inc. chairman, makes remarks at Nike’s 2003 annual meeting of shareholders in Portland, Ore.)

Question: Idaho has been criticized for making deep cuts in the state’s budget rather than raised taxes in the current bad economic times. Oregon has risked losing a major corporation like Nike as a result of big tax hikes on corporations and the wealthy. Which state has taken the best approach?

Anderson: Cornered Tiger

Nick Anderson/Houston Chronicle

NIC Nears Title w/Win Over Rival CSI

Where they’ve excelled for the last month, the Golden Eagles fell apart on Friday (in Twin Falls). After grinding out numerous wins in the clutch while winning seven of eight Scenic West Athletic Conference games, the College of Southern Idaho men’s basketball team suffered through late miscues and missed shots in taking an 80-75 home loss to No. 11 North Idaho College. … “It was a big game for our guys and we came out a little bit tight.” In the final four minutes, CSI missed three wide-open 3-pointers that could have tied the game. Down 74-68 with a minute to play, another miscue put the nail in CSI’s coffin. Chuck Odum poked the ball away from NIC at midcourt, but Pierre Jackson missed his dunk attempt and North Idaho’s Renado Parker capped his 19-point night with an open layup on the other end/Mike Christensen, Twin Falls Times-News. More here.

Coeur d’Alene Vs. Lewiston In 5A Final

If the Coeur d’Alene High girls basketball team had a true point guard, it would win the State 5A championship going away. Ball handling has been the Vikings’ Achilles heel this season, but they’ve managed to get by with a guard-by-committee approach. Highland tested Coeur d’Alene’s resolve in more ways than one Friday, but the Vikings held off the physical Rams 48-39 in the semifinals at the Idaho Center. It will be an all-North Idaho final for the second time in three years when Coeur d’Alene (21-4) meets Lewiston (21-2) at 7 PST. For the fourth straight year the state trophy will go to a Panhandle team. CdA will be after its third straight state championship. It’s the fifth consecutive year the Vikings have been in the state final. Lewiston rallied from a 15-point deficit to knock off Centennial 57-52 in overtime/Greg Lee, SportsLink. More here. (Photo by Dan Pelle/SR, from Lewiston’s win over Coeur d’Alene in Coeur d’Alene Feb. 2)

  • Also, Kellogg vs. Priest River for the girls’ state 3A title (see link above & scroll down)

Parting Shot: On Thin Ice — 2.19.10

A fisherman stands near his boat on the main channel of the Mississippi River as ice begins to break apart from warmer temperatures near Dubuque, Iowa, Thursday (AP Photo/Telegraph Herald, Dave Kettering)

TGIF Wild Card — 2.19.10

So what do you think of the new Political Wild Card today. Did it do its job isolating general political discussion to one thread, as advertised? I might run a poll next year featuring various names suggested for the Political Wild Card to see which you prefer. Meanwhile, you’re all welcome to Blogfest 2010, from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday at Steve Widmyer’s Fort Ground Grill in the historic Fortgrounds area near North Idaho College. You can see the poster made for Blogfest 2010 by Dogwalk Musings and read the particulars here. Now, I’ll replay the Wild Card and get outtahere. I’ll see you tomorrow afternoon …

Otter Lashes Back @ Idaho Papers

In December 1770, while arguing for the acquittal of British soldiers charged with killing his fellow Americans in the Boston Massacre, John Adams said, “Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” There was a time when most newspaper columnists at least paid lip service to the good intentions of public officials. They might be misguided, shortsighted or simply stupid, the writers would suggest, but at least they meant well. Social niceties were observed; there was a higher level of mutual respect and civility. That just isn’t the case anymore. Too many writers now ignore, gloss over or leave out facts they find at odds with their conclusion or the point they’re trying to make. Facts after all, as Adams said, can be stubborn things – and inconvenient/Gov. Butch Otter, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Does Gov. Butch Otter help himself by claiming he has thick skin and then sending this letter out to Idaho newspapers Friday afternoon? 

PM Headlines — 2.19.10

“The Class of 2010 River City Leadership Academy is working on Silent Witness silhouettes,” posts Councilwoman KerriT/More Main Street. “Kimball Office provided thirty two particle board cut-outs and ACE Hardware donated the paint. The RCLA volunteers are working in the Post Falls Lions Club shop on the project this month. When completed the Post Falls Police Department OASIS program will display the Silent Witnesses to bring awareness to domestic violence.” More photos here.

PM Scanner Traffic — 2.19.10

  • 5:08 p.m. Top of China reports that two males involved in a theft are cooperating and reading books at a restaurant table.
  • 5:06 p.m. A Post Falls mother reports that her son mooned a bus driver and is concerned what will happen to the boy if the driver reports the incident.
  • 4:55 p.m. A 15YO female hurt her knee in a dirt-bike crash about a quarter mile from Timberlake High on H54, near H41.
  • 4:51 p.m. A male who is hiding behind telephone poles is watching females enter Thomas Hammer Coffee, 3904 Mullan/Post Falls.
  • 4:31 p.m. Caller reports he received lip from a Jeep driver when he warned him about speeding through the Green Haven Trailer Park on Cosgrove./CdA.
  • 4:02 p.m. A female needs help “wrangling” her mother, a dementia sufferer, who wandered off from Rawhide Ridge/Post Falls, with her purse & beige trench coat.
  • 3:59 p.m. Caller reports that several unrestrained children are riding in the canopy of a white pickup on I-90 @ McGuire Road/Post Falls.
  • 3:31 p.m. A wooden crate is lying on I-90 @ Huetter.
  • Much more below

HBO’s Blogos: Going Buggy — 2.19.10

“My daughter recently got up close and personal with a few Gromphadorhina portentosa, otherwise known as the Madagascar hissing cockroach,” posts Idaho Dad/A Family Runs Through It. “How’d you like to find one of these crawling up your shirt?”

Question: Can you handle bugs on your skin?

Right To Bears Arms In Nat’l Parks

Buffalo graze in Yellowstone National Park, Wyo. Loaded guns will be allowed in Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon and other national parks under a new law that takes effect Monday. The law lets licensed gun owners bring firearms into national parks and wildlife refuges as long as they are allowed by state law. (AP Photo/Douglas C. Pizac, File)

Question: Do you agree with the federal policy change that will allow licensed gun owners to bring firearms into national parks?

JillK: New West, IFF Are Different

But it all comes down to the fact that NewWest.Net does not advocate for anything. There is a difference between “advocate” and “opine.” Our opinion columns may endorse a particular point of view, but we would never go to a state legislature and try to influence legislation or a legislator. That’s the bottom line difference between the two organizations, because the IdFreedomFoundation does exactly that. And yes, NewWest.Net is a member of the Capitol Correspondents. This is our fourth year as members, and I am on the standing committee. We are also members of the Idaho Press Club, and have won some significant awards/Jill Kuraitis, New West. More here.

DFO: Jill is discussing the debate we had here Feb. 1 re: the decision by the Capital Correspondents Association to reject the membership request of conservative Idaho Freedom Foundation.

Question: Do you agree/disagree with Jill’s comment?

Winder to Haiti: Let Our People Go

Sen. Chuck Winder, R-Boise, said he will mail his petition calling for the release of Idahoans imprisoned in Haiti on Friday, and that more than a dozen senators have signed on in support. A Haitian judge released eight of the 10 Americans imprisoned in Haiti after they attempted to take 33 children across Haiti’s border to the Dominican Republic. Winder said the petition is still necessary because two Idahoans, the group’s leader, Laura Silsby, and her former nanny, Charisa Coulter, remain in Haiti. Winder’s petition is addressed to leaders in Congress, the presidents of Haiti and the U.S., as well as Secretary of State Hilary Clinton/Brad Iverson-Long, Idaho Reporter. More here.

Question: Do you agree with state Sen. Chuck Winder that it’s time to free the remaining Idahoans who have been detained in Haiti?

WH: State Pension Plan Hits Taxpayers

State lawmakers last week very nearly fumbled on an issue with massive implications for taxpayers. It happened Wednesday when the House State Affairs Committee voted 13-5 to reject a proposal to block a 1 percent cost of living increase for retirees on the state’s pension program, the Public Employees Retirement System of Idaho. The lawmakers on the committee were ill-informed about the severity of the pension program’s ongoing financial issues. After learning the full scope of the problem, the panel came back the following day, reversed course and agreed to block the cost of living increase. The vote threw a spotlight on an issue seldom discussed around the Statehouse. PERSI had a $3 billion unfunded liability as of July 1, 2009, due to investment loses and insufficient contributions relative to benefits/Wayne Hoffman, Idaho Freedom Foundation. More here.

Question: Do you have a pension plan at your place of work?

Boise State, WSU Schedule Games

Washington State University and Boise State University will play a home-and-home football series beginning in 2016, it was announced by both schools Friday. The first meeting of the two-game series is scheduled for Sept. 10, 2016 at Boise State with the venue shifting to Martin Stadium for a Sept. 9, 2017 contest. “This is a series that football fans throughout the Pacific Northwest have wanted to see renewed,” said WSU Interim Director of Athletics Anne McCoy. “It is our continuing goal to play quality nonconference opponents that our fans want to see and Boise State’s past success makes it an ideal opponent for a home-and-home series”/SportsLink. More here. (1997 Moscow-Pullman Daily News photo of WSU’s 58-0 win over Boise State)

Question: Is this a game you wanted to see on the schedule?

Spoiler Alert

American Allison Pottinger delivers the stone in a victory over Russia in women’s curling at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia, today. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

KLEW Defends ‘Hang’ Murray Story

“They didn’t print the whole thing,” (Diane) Capps (pictured) said of KLEW’s coverage, adding she went on to say people could ‘hang’ Murray by voting her out of office. “Patty Murray has been hanging with the wrong crowd. I would hang Patty Murray by vote. That’s the whole point that’s missing.” But KLEW news director Greg Meyer said the unedited footage from the Tea Party rally doesn’t have Capps making a statement about hanging Murray with votes. Prior to the comment, he said, Capps had been talking about voter registration. “The raw video shows that it wasn’t taken out of context,” Meyer said. “I still contend the coverage was fair. We had no agenda going into it.” Capps was contacted by KLEW for a story clarifying her statement, but Meyer said she declined an interview/Brandon Macz, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: After watching the video, do you think Capps’ comment was taken out of context?

Idaho Internee Became New York Star

Twenty-thousand people, more or less, were sent to Minidoka Relocation Center in Jerome Country during World War II. Most were Japanese-American residents of the Seattle area who would, after three or four years of humiliation at the hands of their adoptive country, be returned home and resume their lives. But Mary Mon Toy, 26 when she fetched up at the Hunt Camp in 1942, was something extra. She left the Minidoka camp in 1944 — a year earlier than most her campmates — on a scholarship to Juilliard School arranged by first lady Eleanor Roosevelt. The rest of her life, she spent in New York City as a star/Steve Crump, Twin Falls Times News. More here.

Question: Do you know a Japanese-American who was interned in this country during WWII?

Trillhaase: Jeers To Butch Otter

JEERS … to Gov. Otter. Tell this governor what he doesn’t want to hear and he’ll retaliate. Case in point: Idaho Public Television. Otter wants to wean public television from about $1.7 million in state tax support over the next four years. It means the end of statewide public television. And why is this being done? To get Idaho Public Television General Manager Peter Morrill’s attention. “Those agencies and departments who chose to kind of thumb their nose at the governor found that they didn’t find a place in his budget,” Senate President Bob Geddes, R-Soda Springs, told the Idaho Press Club Tuesday/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. Marty’s full Cheers & Jeers column here.

Question: Do you consider Gov. Butch Otter to be vindictive?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 2.19.10

Corina Lankford hugs her sons Josef (left), 10, and David, 6, after arriving with two other church volunteers at the Boise Airport early this morning. Stories below. (AP Photo / Idaho Statesman / Joe Jaszewski)

Greg Lee: Girls State BB Impressions

I watched all four games and was very impressed with the freshman twin guards from Highland and Meridian. The Warriors had Centennial on the ropes but didn’t finish.Overall, I thought Lewiston played the best Thursday. But Lewiston should have since it was essentially playing the fifth place team from District III - which, after seeing the games Thursday, seems to be getting weaker and weaker. Post Falls and Lake City, two teams left home in the Inland Empire League, were better than at least two if not three of the teams I saw Thursday. Still, District III continues to dominate state berths. I understand it is based on number of schools, but it certainly isn’t based on quality/Greg Lee, SportsLink. More here.

Noon: Bubblehead’s Ethical Dilemma

Bubblehead: Ethical dilemma here that I’m hoping to get everyone’s input on. I got a Facebook invite to a Meet and Greet for Raul Labrador. I don’t see any circumstance under which I’d ever vote for him, but I’m thinking of going and asking if he thinks President Obama meets the Constitutional requirements to be President — that is, to see how much of a Birther he might be. I’d probably post his response on my blog. Would it be dishonest to ask that question without a preface like “I’m a blogger who doesn’t support you…”?

Question: Any advice for Bubblehead?

Are We Americans Losing It?

Firefighters and investigators look around the area by the damaged remains of a small aircraft inside a building, Friday in Austin, Texas. Joseph Stack flew his small airplane Thursday into the building that houses several offices of the Internal Revenue Service. More here. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

Question: Izzit just me, or are we Americans starting to show signs that we’re losing it, both in high-file acts of violence like the suicide mission above and in increasing anger and violence in our politics and communities? Or is this simply a response to tough economic times?

Assessor McDowell Seeks Re-election

Mike McDowell made the following statement in announcing his bid for re-election as Kootenai County assessor: “I have the education, training and experience of more than 32 years in the Assessor’s Office. I have served the property owners of Kootenai County as your senior deputy assessor since 1983 and as your assessor since 2003. I know and understand the many challenges of the office. I place a high value on quality customer service, professional development for staff, and cost effective operations. Complete statement and bio info here.

Question: Political candidates often use the word “serve” in terms of “serve the public.” I don’t want to pick on Mike here. But don’t individuals in private industry often serve the public, too?

AM Scanner Traffic — 2.19.10

  • 11:30 a.m. A pitbull or boxer puppy is loose @ Hayden Meadows Elementary. (Update 12:05): Puppy is now contained at house in 9900 block of Finucane/Hayden.
  • 11:20 a.m. Motorist reports 2 juveniles in a small, green SUV are hanging around in front of a neighbor’s house in 1500 block of Hill/CdA.
  • 10:50 a.m. Caller reports several chunks of wood lying on I-90 @ M/P 8 (Huetter).
  • 10:44 a.m. Motorist reports smelling natural gas or sulfuric acid @ Ramsey & Ohio Match.
  • 10:27 a.m. Jeremy reports that his ex-girlfriend has taken control of his Facebook page.
  • 10:07 a.m. A female who was trespassed from a residence on 3300 block of Serenity/Post Falls has returned to that house.
  • 9:54 a.m. A medical emergency is reported in the craft room @ Bestland Retirement Community on Best/CdA.
  • 9:14 a.m. A vehicle is broken down on H95 in front of Garwood Wrecking.
  • 8:53 a.m. A female w/a history of psychological problems who was released recently from KMC care is terrorizing her family in Post Falls.
  • 8:47 a.m. Mark believes his estranged wife may have taken some of his possessions.
  • 8:34 a.m. A Toyota has crashed into a barrier on 4th of July Pass, partly blocking traffic.
  • 8:24 a.m. A female on Palouse/Post Falls reports that someone is in her basement, making noise.

Realtor Fillios To Challenge Currie

(Realtor Chris) Fillios has set as his top priority the expansion of economic opportunity via job expansion, while maintaining the rural character of the region. Fillios believes that Kootenai County can have it both ways. “There’s no arguing that the citizens of Kootenai County have spoken strongly about their desire to maintain our rural lands,” he said. He believes that working with state legislators to reduce Idaho’s high corporate tax rate, coupled with initiatives to promote the higher education opportunities between Coeur d’Alene and Moscow, can be a lure to prospective employers/Chris Fillios press release. More here

Question: Fillios will challenge commission Chairman Rick Currie, who won a three-way race and re-election 2 years ago. Is Currie vulnerable this year?

Countdown To Blogfest 2010

At Fort Ground Grill, Steve Widmyer and his troops are ready to put the shrimp on the barbie (actually to start preparing the taco bar and sundry other treats) for Blogfest 2010. The annual event will take place from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday at the historic Fortgrounds restaurant/pub. We don’t have anything planned other than a gabfest with others who hang out here. You can meet the faces behind the pseudonyms, in most cases. Blurkers are welcome. BTW, I’d like to hear on this thread from individuals who are planning to attend a blogfest for the first time.

Question: How many blogfests have you attended?

EOB: House Votes Against PERSI Hike

The House has voted 48-19 in favor of HCR 42, the bill to block a 1 percent cost of living increase for state retirees next month. It wasn’t a straight party-line vote. Two Republicans, Reps. Bob Schaefer, R-Nampa, and Tom Trail, R-Moscow, voted against the bill, joining Democrats; and one Democrat, Rep. Donna Boe, D-Pocatello, voted in favor of it, joining Republicans. Then, right after the vote, she rose, and said, “Having voted on the prevailing side, I wish to give notice of reconsideration for HCR 42.” Speaker Lawerence Denney responded, “So noted.” That means, under rules, Boe can bring the bill back up for a re-vote, though the House would then have to vote to reconsider/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise.

Question: Do you think retired state employees should get a modest, cost-of-living raise this year?

Political Wild Card — 2.19.10

President Barack Obama embraces Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nev. during a town hall meeting at Green Valley High School in Henderson, Nev., Friday. Washington Post story here. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

DFO: You asked for it, and here it is — the 1st Political Wild Card (for lack of a better name) to be posted on Huckleberries Online. You guys’ll need to make up the rules re: this Wild Card (for example, what type of comments do you expect to be posted here). Don’t expect to see all political commentary posted only on this Wild Card because I publish posts throughout the day that attract political commentary. But you can feel free to tell a commenter to “take it to the political wild card” if you see something out of sorts elsewhere.

Why Did Nosworthy Review Bomb?

I’m trying to figure out why there was little interest in the HBO Grub Club review of Nosworthy. After the tremendous response to the call for a review of The Porch, I figured we were on our way. So you guys need to tell me why this review bombed (although the handful of you who did try out Nosworthy gave it rave reviews). Too soon after the last review? Should we make the reviews once a month? What? (BTW, you can still post a review of Nosworthy by clicking on the HBO Grub Club button in the right rail.)

HBO Poll: Healthier Than Most Our Age

  • HBO Poll: 42 of 93 respondents (45%) said that they are better than most others their age healthwise. Another 21 (23%) said that their health was so-so; 16 (17%) said “could be better”; 11 (12%) said “top notch”; and 3 (3%) admitted “I’m a wreck.”
  • Political Wild Card: 75 of 103 respondents (73%) said they’d like a second Wild Card devoted to politicals, to reduce the political comments from over-running individual threads.
  • Today’s Question (in left bank): Are you concerned that a Tea Party organizer from Clarkston said she wanted to ‘hang’ U.S. Sen. Patty Murray?

Princeton Review: UI Dorms Terrible

The Princeton Review currently lists the University of Idaho with the 13th most dungeon-like dorms in the nation. The third site listed in a quick Google search for “worst dorms in the country” is about UI’s dorms. Anyone who has been inside Theophilus Tower or especially Wallace Residence Center understand this report. University Housing does not receive any funds from the state. This means the only money to make improvements or maintain the dorms comes from the rent students pay. Even with these financial limitations, University Housing is planning improvements to some of their more antiquated facilities/Jeffrey Reznicek,  UI Argonaut Editorial Board. More here.

Question: How would you describe your living accommodations during your college days?

Tiger Woods: I’m Sorry, So Sorry

Tiger Woods hugs his mother Kultida Woods after making a statement at the Sawgrass Players Club, Friday in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Sam Greenwood, Pool)

Tiger Woods is telling his family, friends and fans that he is “deeply sorry” for his selfish and irresponsible behavior. Woods is speaking from the clubhouse at the TPC Sawgrass, home of the PGA Tour. About 40 people are in the room, including his mother. His wife is not obviously present. The world’s No. 1 golfer had not talked in public since his traffic accident Nov. 27 triggered shocking revelations about Woods’ infidelity. Friday’s event was tightly controlled, with only a few journalists allowed to watch Woods live here/Associated Press

Question: Apology accepted?

DOTC: 4 More Years, 4 More Years

Dan English is eager to spread the catch-phrase for his Kootenai County clerk campaign: He’s got the skinny. “It speaks to my experience and confidence as county clerk … And it’s a little bit about how I’ve lost about 95 pounds since last July,” the 58-year-old said with a grin Wednesday, adding that folks do a double take since he started his aggressive diet program. “I’m back to my high school wrestling weight. So if I get any tough opponents, I’m ready to go.” County clerk since 1995, and running again this year, the white-bearded Democrat has plenty of plans for improving and sustaining the several departments he supervises/Alecia Warren, Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

Question: Anyone here that doesn’t think that the incredibly shrinking Dan of the County has earned 4 more years as Kootenai County clerk?

What Are The 7 Wonders Of NIdaho?

Mebbe I set this one up improperly last night. So I’ll try again. In the recent Boise Weekly Jay Vail offers a Boise version of the 7 Wonders of the Ancient World — you know, the Colossus of Rhodes, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, etc. He tosses into the mix the Pharos Lighthouse and the Boise Hole among others, admitting “so maybe the infamous Boise landmark doesn’t quite measure up to some of the seven wonders of the ancient world, but Boise does have a few notable locations/creations worthy of notice.” You can see BW’s 7 wonders of Boise here. I can think of several North Idaho wonders that top Boise’s. How about you?

Question: What would you consider to be some of the 7 wonders of North Idaho?

AM Headlines — 2.19.10

Teresa McHugh is working in her garage on Wednesday. She is a Coeur d’Alene artist who has been commissioned to create the city’s latest piece of public art. Her 18-foot high metal sculpture of a tree with ribbons of bronze swirling around it, spelling CdA, will be placed at the city’s eastern gateway — at Sherman Avenue and 22nd Street — at the end of May. Alison Boggs’ story here. (Kathy Plonka/SR)

APhoto Of The Day — 2.19.10

Canadian fans cheer the men’s curling team in their victory over France at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia, Thursday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

Plushenko Unhappy w/Silver Medal

Item: Lysacek ends gold drought for U.S./Associated Press

More Info: Even more surprising? Lysacek won without doing that so-called all-important quadruple jump. “If the Olympic champion doesn’t know how to jump a quad, I don’t know,” Plushenko said. “Now it’s not men’s figure skating, now it’s dancing.” But Lysacek makes no apologies for what he does — and doesn’t — do.

Question: Does Plushenko have a legitimate gripe that his quad should have trumped Lysacek’s artistry?

KREM: McGuckins Break Silence

For five days in 2001, the eyes of the world were on a remote house near Sagle, Idaho. Inside were five children guarded by their dogs and surrounded by police. The McGuckin family has never spoken about their ordeal on camera until now. They are now ready to share their side of the story, and the amazing lives they have led since the standoff. Jo Ann McGuckin says, “we were treated abominably, and I still don’t know why.” Jo Ann McGuckin lives modestly. Her home is a revolving door for her seven children. Pictures line the walls. None of them from the scene of a truly strange five-day standoff.  Kathryn McGuckin says it was “surreal. I think that’s the word I would use. Surreal.” But there is nothing there anymore. Any sign of the McGuckin home is gone. All that’s left is unanswered questions and unrepaired image/John Langeler, KREM2. More here. (2001 AP file photo/Jeff Green)

Question: Do you believe Bonner County authorities handled the McGuckin standoff properly?

Heller: Our Frame Of Mind

Joe Heller/Hellertoons

CdA Upsets Boise In State 5A 47-37

The Coeur d’Alene High girls basketball team followed a similar pattern Thursday in its State 5A tournament opener. The Vikings showed glimpses of brilliance coupled with, to borrow a term from coach Dale Poffenroth, stretches of stupidity and foul trouble. The constant, though, for Coeur d’Alene is defense, and it definitely showed up as the second-ranked Vikings handled the No. 1-ranked Boise Braves 47-37 at the Idaho Center. Coeur d’Alene (20-4 overall) will meet Highland (21-3) tonight at 5:15 PST in the semifinals/Greg Lee, SportsLink. Full game story here. And: Idaho Statesman photo gallery here.

Idaho Center, Nampa

Game 1: Highland 45, Eagle 40 (OT)
Game 2: Coeur d’Alene 47, Boise 37
Game 3: Centennial 50, Meridian 49
Game 4: Lewiston 51, Mountain View 34
Elimination games

Game 5: Eagle (16-8) vs. Boise (22-2), 1:15 p.m. (loser eliminated)
Game 6: Meridian (16-8) vs. Mountain View (15-11), 3 p.m. (loser eliminated)
Game 7: Highland (21-3) vs. Coeur d’Alene (20-4), 6:15 p.m.
Game 8: Centennial (22-2) vs. Lewiston (20-2), 8 p.m.

Loyola Marymount 74, Gonzaga 66

Gonzaga guard Demetri Goodson steals the ball from Loyola Marymount forward Drew Viney (34) in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday in Los Angeles. Loyola Marymount upset the No. 13 Zags 74-66. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)

Does HBO Need A Political Wild Card?

Stickman: A political wild card would be great. … I don’t like the banter I see at times that makes others stray. Especially the old timers, that have been quiet of late. I read each day like I said and if it gets too political, I just move on. I enjoy the simple things in life and leave it at that. There is too much anger these days and you can see it every day. Sometimes it shows up on these threads. I never voted for our present President, but I admire him and he is our chief, whether we like him or not. I will always give respect to whomever is in office, so when I see things that downgrade him and what he is trying to do, I find offense. I put myself in his shoes and try to imagine making the decisions he does.

Parting Shot — 2.18.10

Seattle Mariners pitcher Cliff Lee signs an autograph for Jane Henderson, left, of Tacoma, Wash., on the team’s first day of baseball spring training for pitchers and catchers Thursday in Peoria, Ariz. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

Wild Card/Thursday — 2.18.10

Brother Frito Ray and his wife, Lisa, have RSVP’d that they’ll likely drop by Blogfest 2010 on Saturday afternoon. Frito Ray can’t resist the taco bar being prepared for the free eats by Steve Widmyer’s Fort Ground Grill in the historic Fortgrounds area. Many others have also RSVP’d. Chatterbox has said that she intends to bring a blurker to meet the rowdies here. Blurkers are welcome. But trolls aren’t. You can use this Wild Card to let us know if you’re coming and/or to start your own threads …

WSU Offers Moos AD Job

Washington State University president Elson S. Floyd offered the school’s vacant athletic director position to Bill Moos on Thursday afternoon. “He did extend the offer,” said Moos when reached by telephone. “My wife (Kendra) and I are going to consider it and, hopefully, we’ll have a response to president Floyd in the next few days.” Moos declined to go into specifics, saying he was honoring Floyd’s wishes/Vince Grippi, SR. More here.

PM Headlines — 2.18.10

American missionaries arrested on child kidnapping charges, Laura Silsby, 40, right, and Charisa Coulter, 24, both of Meridian, walk towards the courthouse in Port-au-Prince earlier today. A day after eight of their fellow missionaries were released and flown back to the U.S., Silsby and Coulter remain in Haiti and went to court to be questioned by the judge about their plans to set up an orphanage in the Dominican Republic. (AP Photo/Javier Galeano)

APhoto Of The Day — 2.18.10

South Korean bride Kim Jong-soon. center, holds a portrait of her groom Kwak Jung-shick who couldn’t turn up at a mass wedding ceremony in Goyang, South Korea, Wednesday. The Unification Church organized the biggest mass wedding in a decade, which about 14,000 people around the world attended. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Ahjn Young-joon)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Portrait of an average day in the waiting room outside Larry King’s office at CNN — MikeK.
  • 2. Kim had heard her groom was a Kwak, but accepted the arrangement anyway until she realized he was already in his Goyang Goyang-Gone mode.
  • 3. Korean women gather to audition for a new South Korean production of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfettes. From left to right, are hopefuls for the parts of Dopey, Grumpy, and Bashful — Nic.
  • HM: JeanieS

PM Scanner Traffic — 2.18.10

  • 5:57 p.m. Mother wants a deputy to speak to 7YO son re: misbehaving and being disrespectful.
  • 5:53 p.m. Coeur d’Alene Library patron caught male in backpack burglarizing her Kia Optima in the library parking lot. Burglar ran off.
  • 5:24 p.m. A Riverstone condo resident reports finding an elderly neighbor covered in blood on the floor for four days. The neighbor is still alive.
  • 4:40 p.m. Female reports receiving a call claiming she’d won a trip to Jamaica and a lot of money. She thinks it was a scam.
  • 4:36 p.m. David reports that a neighbor broke out his vehicle window and punched him in the face several times @ Twin Lakes Road & Lake Forest Loop.
  • 3:53 p.m. DMW reports wanted person in office.
  • 3:08 p.m. A white pickup and a red car are racing on H95 @ M/P436 (Wyoming/Hayden).
  • 3:04 p.m. Rockford Bay Road resident reports theft of a boat engine.
  • 2:51 p.m. Caller reports that a Harrison neighbor is buying alcohol for her two under-aged children, including last weekend.
  • More below

D’s, R’s Battle Over PERSI Reversal

The House State Affairs Committee has voted on straight party lines - with all Democrats objecting - to reconsider yesterday’s 13-5 vote to kill a resolution from Rep. Dennis Lake, R-Blackfoot, to block a scheduled 1 percent COLA for state retirees. Rep. Eric Anderson, R-Priest Lake, made the motion to reconsider, saying there’s new information. Committee Chair Tom Loertscher, R-Iona, then made a motion to send the measure, HCR 42, to the House floor with a recommendation that it “do-pass.” The committee is debating now/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise.

Home At Last

Silas Thompson of Twin Falls is hugged by his mother Renee after arriving at the Kansas City International Airport Thursday in Kansas City. Mo. Thompson was among a group of Americans arrested in Haiti on child abduction charges after the Jan. 12, earthquake. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

NIdaho Tops In Colon Cancer Deaths

The five northern counties of Idaho lead the state in the number of colon cancer deaths per person, a position the North Idaho Cancer Coalition would happily relinquish. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths nationwide and in Idaho. Last year, lung cancer killed 633 Idahoans and colorectal cancer killed 218. The 2008 statistics aren’t divided by county yet, but in 2007 colorectal cancer caused the deaths of five people each in Benewah and Boundary counties, 10 people in Shoshone County, 21 in Bonner County and 67 in Kootenai County. Colorectal cancer deaths are preventable with screening and early diagnosis, but screening rates in Idaho are nearly the lowest in the nation. Idaho ranks 46th among all states for the percentage of residents who undergo screening to prevent colorectal cancer/Cynthia Taggart, Panhandle Health District. More here.

Question: What prevents you from being screened to prevent this disease?

Tea Party Member: Hang Patty Murray

In the world of Sen. Patty Murray’s reelection campaign, at least, there’s nothing like a hanging in the morning to raise campaign cash. The senator’s campaign manager, Carol Albert, has sent out a video clip in which a tea party supporter, speaking to a Saturday rally in Asotin, likened Murray to a character from “Lonesome Dove.” “What happened to Jake when he ran with the wrong crowd? He got hung. And that’s what I’d like to do with Patty Murray,” said the woman, who identified the “wrong crowd” as President Obama. In an e-mail appeal, Albert begins: “Patty Murray is used to rough and tumble campaigns. She and I both know that the debate can be fierce. But sometimes lines get crossed”/Joel Connelly, Seattle P-I. More here.

Question: In the comments section today, newby Shanusmaximus provides several links to photos that show the same kind of incendiary comments aimed at former President Bush by liberals. I’m turned off by this kind of over-the-top rhetoric. Are you?

‘American Idol’ To Start 9th Season

The 24 finalists for the 9th season of the reality singing competition “American Idol,” are shown. (AP Photo/Fox, Patrick Ecclestein)

Question: Why do/don’t you watch “American Idol”?

Harwood Offers ‘Firearm Freedom Act’

Idaho would declare that any gun or ammunition manufactured in the state doesn’t have to be registered and is exempt from all federal laws and regulations, under legislation introduced at the request of Rep. Dick Harwood, R-St. Maries, this morning. “This is a state sovereignty issue,” Harwood told the House State Affairs Committee. “What it’s trying to do is create a court challenge in the federal courts to Commerce Clause powers, is what it basically does … saying we as a state need to be able to control our own commerce within our state”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Do you support Rep. Harwood’s proposed ‘Firearms Freedom Act’?

DM: Don’t Cast Stone @ ‘The Shack’

I’ve read “The Shack” twice. Once when my oldest son, Nate, was alive and once right after he died, last year. It touched me with a sense of wonder that I had never experienced, when I read it the first time. Upon Nate’s death, the book filled me with joy, immeasurable. I began to search the Scriptures for comments about Heaven and REAL life, after this false life. I bought Randy Alcorn’s book “Heaven” and other works by other authors. I centered myself in the Bible AND enjoyed other works. Paul Young’s book is a catalytic book for thinking and imagining…it is not the Bible. It is a fiction story about a non-fiction God who REALLY loves us. It is a story of heart, not head…and it seems that some leaders in the certain Baptist denominations don’t think people have the discerning ability to distinguish the difference between Paul Young and Paul the Apostle. C’mon…are you kidding me? It’s a story…a parable. A metaphor. Jesus used them. No wonder searching people walk past certain Baptist churches and on into  Barnes and Noble/Dennis Mansfield. More here.

Question: What did you think of ‘The Shack’?

Craigslist Fraud Suspect Seized In CdA

A Craigslist scheme that stretched from Spokane to Miami led police to a Coeur d’Alene hotel this week, where they arrested a suspect accused of duping unsuspecting buyers through fraudulent advertisements.  Joshua J. Mulvey, 25, was arrested on a second-degree theft charge Tuesday at Motel 6 in Coeur d’Alene after Spokane police searched his Spokane apartment last week. Mulvey escaped during that search, police say, climbing into the attic of a neighboring apartment and fleeing out of a window. Detectives used a ping from Mulvey’s cell phone to trace him to Coeur d’Alene, according to police. Mulvey is in the Kootenai County Jail/Meghann M. Cuniff, Sirens & Gavels. More here.

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 2.18.10

Wranglers corral bison into livestock trailers at the Slip and Slide containment facility in Corwin Springs, Mont., on Wednesday in preparation for travel to Ted Turner’s Green Ranch along the Madison River west of Bozeman, Mont. The bison, which have tested brucellosis-free, will be kept on the ranch for the next five years as part of a bison quarantine study. Bozeman Chronicle story here. (AP Photo/The Bozeman Daily Chronicle, Sean Sperry)

CdA Faces Boise In 5A Tourney Today

Idaho Center, Nampa
Game 1: Highland (20-3) vs. Eagle (16-7), 1:15 p.m.
Game 2: Boise (22-1) vs. Coeur d’Alene (19-4), 3 p.m.
Game 3: Centennial (21-2) vs. Meridian (16-7), 6:15 p.m.
Game 4: Lewiston (19-2) vs. Mountain View (15-10), 8 p.m.

DFO: Colleague Greg Lee will be reporting on these games at SportsLink today. I’ll post the score of the Boise/Coeur d’Alen game as soon as I get if from Greg.

High Noon: Soup’s On

January was National Soup Month, but it’s not too late to celebrate with a steaming bowl of chicken noodle or a hearty serving of black bean. Researchers say that soup can help you lose weight and boost your immunity. Perhaps that’s why Americans consume more than 10 billion bowls of it each year. But I’ve discovered an additional benefit – making homemade soup is great therapy. In fact, it’s become my surefire stress reliever. Nobody does worry like a mom, and mothers of teenagers are in a league of their own. If worry were an Olympic sport, moms would own the medals stand/Cindy Hval, Washington Voices. More here.

Question: What’s your favorite kind of soup?

Suicide Pilot Crashes Into IRS Office

Smoke billows from a seven-story building in Austin, Texas after a small private plane crashed into it this morning. Federal officials say that the pilot of a small plane that slammed into a building set his house on fire beforehand and then intentionally crashed the aircraft. The building house the IRS. CNN story here. And Smoking Gun report here. (AP Photo/Trey Jones)

Question: Reaction?

O’Reilly, Palin Talk Sandpoint, Partyers

O’REILLY: Well, they went to Sandpoint, Idaho, [ed. note: Sandpoint is Palin’s birthplace] The Times did. And then they brought in all the Nazi stuff that had been up there. And they brought in all the militia stuff, Weaver and such that had been up there. Look, there’s no doubt that The New York Times wants to brand the Tea Party as a bunch of extremist loons. There’s no doubt they want to do that. But there is danger, do you agree with me, that there is danger if some Tea Party people play into that? If they do say we’re getting our guns and we’re going to overthrow and Obama is this and Obama is that and he isn’t born here. I mean, there was a birther thing going on at the convention. You don’t believe in the birther thing do you, Governor?/David Neiwert, Crooks & Liars. Complete interview and Neiwert comment here.

Question: Do you watch ‘The O’Reilly Factor’?

Wipe Out

This six photo combination shows Switzerland’s Dominique Gisin crashing as she approaches the finish in the women’s downhill at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Whistler, British Columbia, Wednesday. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Question: Tell us about a time when you wiped out skiing, snowmobiling, driving, etc.

EOB: Hart Immigration Bill Dies

The House State Affairs Committee has killed HB 497, Rep. Phil Hart’s immigration bill. A motion to amend it instead and remove much of the bill - the section to suspend employers’ licenses for violations - failed on a 6-11 vote, and then a motion to just kill the bill passed on a voice vote. Rep. Ken Andrus, R-Lava Hot Springs, who made the successful motion, said, “The problem is the federal government allowing an adequate work force to come here”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. Also: Farmers, retailers, IACI, ICAN oppose Hart legislation

KR: Hey, Commenters, Stay On Topic

I appreciate the spirited comments at this blog, and it’s good to see new commenters jumping in to discuss the issues. Welcome aboard, and check back in frequently. I try to update this blog at least once a day. Our guidelines for monitoring comments are pretty simple, and I try to allow the commentary to go wherever it goes. However, I do ask you to stay on topic. I’ve removed a few comments this week that, in my view, were off point. I don’t like to delete comments, but I also want to provide all users a place for topical debate on the issues/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. Blog link here.

Question: Do you  think comments should be deleted when they wander off topic of a particular thread?

AM Scanner Traffic — 2.18.10

  • 11:41 a.m. Joseph on Candlelight/Worley reports that he paid a contractor for services that he hasn’t received.
  • 11:23 a.m. Resident on 10400 block of Morris/Hayden reports that several vehicles are parked in no-parking zone.
  • 10:55 a.m. A dog running loose on the railroad tracks b/n Hayden & Prairie is crating a safety hazard.
  • 10:46 a.m. Duane @ Super 1/Hayden reports a customer wrote a check on an account closed in January.
  • 10:35 a.m. A female juvenile who is known to roam Post Falls has been missing from school for several days.
  • 10:27 a.m. Male reports that feral cats in his neighborhood are attacking his cats.
  • 10:08 a.m. An unlawful entry is reported in 29000 block of Cave Bay Road.
  • 10:03 a.m. Resident on 33000 block of Newman/Spirit Lake reports 3 males in a beat-up van are going door to door, trying to sell carpet cleaning equipment.
  • 9:55 a.m. Caller reports that 2 males who aren’t “officer friendly” are sitting in an old white Chrysler drinking in Spirit Lake area.
  • 9:50 a.m. Deer Ridge Drive/Post Falls resident reports that something that smells either like rotten eggs or perfume is coming from neighbor’s property certain times of the day.
  • 9:06 a.m. Female reports that her ex-boyfriend left a photo of himself on her doorstep on 3rd Avenue/Post Falls and texted to say that he was watching her. The male has a history of assault and is currently on probation. (Update @ 9:18 a.m.): Male is texting her to say that he sees the PFPD Blue who is checking out the complaint at her residence.

HBO Poll: LCDC Should Go Away

  • HBO Poll: 36 of 106 respondents (34%) said the controversial Lake City Development Corp. should “go away,” indicating that there’s skepticism about the urban renewal agency beyond the boundaries of Meanwhile, 27 of 106 (25%) said it was an engine for progress; 23 of 106 (22%) said it exists to help developers get richer; and 20 of 106 said LCDC does a good job but needs to be watched.
  • Airport Scan: 51 of 86 respondents (59%) said that whole-body airport scans work to increase public safety, while 35 of 86 (41%) said the scans were an invasion of privacy.
  • Today’s Question: How would you rate your personal health?

In The News: Detainees Back In U.S.

From left, Silas Thompson, 19, of Twin Falls, Paul Thompson, 43, of Twin Falls, Drew Culberth, 34, of Topeka, Kansas, and Steve McMullin, 56, of Twin Falls, leave the hotel at the Miami International Airport Hotel in Miami earlier today. Story here. (AP Photo/J. Pat Carter)

Question: What lesson do you think the “Idaho 10” learned while they were sitting in their Haitian jail cells?

Hart: U.S. Is Magnet For ‘Those People’

Rep. Phil Hart, R-Athol, is presenting his immigration legislation to the House State Affairs Committee this morning, seeking to penalize employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants by suspending their business licenses. …  “It’s not the intent of this legislation to preclude foreign workers from coming here if they were to come here legally,” Hart told the committee. He said he wants to eliminate any incentive for undocumented immigrants to come to Idaho to seek work. “The United States is a magnet for those people, and they’re coming across the border in droves,” Hart said/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Reaction to Rep. Hart’s legislation and comments?

Latah County Is Healthiest Of All

A new university study ranks Idaho’s counties on overall health, and places Kootenai County at 12th among the 42 counties that had sufficient data to be included in the report. “The information is no surprise,” said Jeanne Bock, director of the Panhandle Health District. “It comes from reports that health districts submit and others we study to plan programs to improve health in our counties.” Cynthia Taggart, spokeswoman for the health district, said residents here “should understand this shows Kootenai County as being fairly healthy, which we know we are, but there are some areas we can work on.” Latah County has Idaho’s “healthiest residents,” the report announced Wednesday/David Cole, Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

Question: Why do you suppose Latah County is 11 spots healthier than Kootenai County — and it doesn’t even have a Kroc Center?

LH: Budget Amendment Bad Idea

Rep. Walt Minnick’s statement in a Lewiston Tribune column Feb. 10 saying he would “vote for a balanced budget constitutional amendment” disturbs me. I don’t quarrel with his other proposals such as curbing earmarks, supporting a line item veto and pay-as-you-go legislation, but his proposal to support a constitutional amendment is alarming, especially so with the Tea Partyers’ gaining so much momentum. If they latch onto this idea, we are in big trouble. In every course I took in political science, I learned that there are several reasons why his idea is not good. One is that using the amendment process to solve immediate problems is a terrible idea. This beautifully crafted document has served us well through all the changes in our culture, technology and world status. Tinkering with it is not to be undertaken lightly/Lenna Harding, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here.

Question: Former U.S. Sen. Larry Craig made the balanced budget amendment his rallying cry. Many in Idaho support the idea. Do you?

AM Headlines — 2.18.10

Heather Bowman is the all-time scoring leader for Gonzaga University and the WCC. Her last home game is Saturday against Pepperdine in the McCarthy Athletic Center. Jan. 31 story re: her accomplishments here. (Dan Pelle/SR)

Herb: Finally Made It To Nosworthy

Herb Huseland: I don’t normally eat out much, especially if it reqjuires a trip to the city. Today was an exception. I needed groceries among other things so I headed for the city. Hayden, Idaho. Oh, and I decided to eat at Nosworthy’s, too. The last time I ate there, it was called the Ground Round. I met the owner in Bayview a few years ago. He told me some other restaurant raised hell over the name, so they changed it. Same ownership. We got onto the subject of potato salad, since at that time I was pumping it out by the car load at the Captain’s Wheel. He told me his son made exellent potato salad and that I should stop by and try it sometime. You can read rest of Herb’s review below.

DFO: You can add your comment to the HBO Grub Club review of Nosworthy Hall of Fame by clicking on this link.

JohnA: New Tiger Emerges On Stage

A new Tiger emerged today. No, I don’t mean that one, even though it appears he’ll finally come out of his seclusion this week to discuss his golf future. No, the new Tiger is Lindsey Vonn, competing basically on one leg, ala Tiger at last year’s US Open, to win the gold medal in the downhill. For those of us who like to go really fast down a slick hill, it was amazing to see how she kept her weight off her sore right leg, which is really, really tough to do when you are turning left, but she made it happen and won the gold. Amazing stuff tonight.

Question: Which Winter Olympic performance to date has been your favorite?

Anderson: So Much For Bipartisanship

Nick Anderson/Houston Chronicle

Solons Rejection Adoption Reform Plea

What rights should an unmarried biological father have, when the unmarried birth mother wants to put a baby up for adoption? No rights? All rights? Rights sufficient to hold up or stop an adoption, even if he’s really just trying to make his ex-lover’s life miserable? And what about the father’s family, the baby’s biological grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins? There were tears and sobs, there were lawyers, there were sharp questions and more as the House Judiciary Committee wrestled with those issues this afternoon, before unanimously rejecting legislation drafted by Coeur d’Alene attorney Anne Solomon on behalf of a North Idaho family that unwillingly lost all contact with their son’s out-of-wedlock baby boy, who was adopted in Utah before the family could do anything to stop it/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Well, What rights should an unmarried biological father have, when the unmarried birth mother wants to put a baby up for adoption? No rights? All rights?

Parting Shot — 2.17.10

Teresa McHugh working in her garage earlier today. She is a Coeur d’Alene artist who has been commissioned to create the city’s latest piece of public art. Her 18-foot high metal sculpture of a tree with ribbons of bronze swirling around it, spelling CdA, will be placed at the city’s eastern gateway — at Sherman Avenue and 22nd Street — at the end of May. (Kathy Plonka/SR)

Hump Day Wild Card — 2.17.10

I’m having a hard time containing myself this morning. I can’t wait for the Olympics coverage at 2 o’clock this afternoon when the USA faces Switzerland … in curling competition. I might have to stop posting for a bit to take in all the exciting action. Also, don’t forget to toss in your 2 cents in the bi-weekly Grub Club review of Nosworthy Hall of Fame. You can access the thread by clicking on the button in the right rail (above recent comments). Now, for your Wild Card …

JC: Does Enquirer Deserve A Pulitzer?

Coming upon an old column celebrating a Portland newspaper for uncovering its state’s ultra-secret — run the morning it won a Pulitzer Prize — an uncomfortable question popped into this scribe’s mind. Should the National Enquirer be awarded a Pulitzer Prize for first revealing that Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards was having an affair and fathered a child? The Edwards affair story was pooh-poohed by reporters covering the 2008 Iowa presidential caucuses. The candidate’s aides worked feverishly to conceal it while wondering whether they would have to blow the whistle if Edwards captured his party’s nomination/Joel Connelly, Seattle Post-Intelligencer. More here.

Question: Does the National Enquirer deserve a Pulitzer Prize for being first to report on John Edwards’ affair?

PM Headlines — 2.17.10

Claude Irwin, a fugitive disbarred lawyer caught in Mexico after more than a decade, made a video first appeareance in court earlier today. Meghann Cuniff’s Sirens & Gavels report here. (Colin Mulvany/SR)

APhoto Of The Day — 2.17.10

Kenneth Starr, center, poses with members of the Noze Brotherhood campus group after speaking to Baylor University faculty and students Tuesday in Waco Texas. Starr was named Baylor’s 14th president. Starr is the former independent prosecutor whose work led to President Bill Clinton’s impeachment. Starr replaces John M. Lilley. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Waco Tribune Herald, Rod Aydelotte)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Later, when asked by a coed if she looked at all like Monica, Starr replied “Close, but no cigar” — JohnA.
  • 2. Years after her plastic surgery Paula Jones’ nose ended up in the most unlikely of places — Charles Dixon.
  • 3. Gary, Mary, Bill, and Kage_Mann test their diguises before coming to Blogfest 2010 — Nic.
  • HM: Kevin Taylor

PM Scanner Traffic — 2.17.10

  • 5:54 p.m. A male w/a scruffy beard left w/o paying for items from Hancock’s Fabrics, Prairie Shopping Center.
  • 5:43 p.m. Unattended death on Lay Lane/Medimont.
  • 5:19 p.m. Several callers are concerned re: an elderly male walking along I-90 @ M/P 11 (Northwest Boulevard).
  • 5:17 p.m. N/b yellow light is out @ Government Way & Honeysuckle.
  • 5:11 p.m. Possible unattended death on Golf Course Road/CdA.
  • 5:02 p.m. 2 bikes appear to be abandoned @ Brunner & Clagstone/Athol.
  • 4:41 p.m. Responding officer wants to know why tribal police are looking for an arson suspect who’s described as being 5-10, 220 pounds, and wearing a mask.
  • 4:01 p.m. A Post Falls male isn’t being cooperative re: a dispute over CDs he got into w/his Rathdrum cousin, who has anger issues.
  • 3:46 p.m. 2 juveniles are running motorcyles up and down Maplewood. It’s an ongoing problem.
  • 3:32 p.m. A vehicle w/a handicap sticker is swerving all over Ross Point Road/PF.
  • 3:09 p.m. Seizure reported at North Idaho College gym.
  • 2:52 p.m. Pizza Hut/212 Appleway customer left without paying for his food.
  • More below

Tiger Woods To Break Silence Friday

Tiger Woods, right, jogs with an unidentified friend near his home earlier today in Windermere, Fla. Woods will end nearly three months of silence Friday when he speaks publicly for the first time since his middle-of-the-night car accident sparked stunning revelations of infidelity. It will be Woods’ first public appearance since Nov. 27. (AP Photo/Pool, Sam Greenwood)

Question: What do you think Tiger Woods will tell us Friday? What steps does he need to take to rebuild his rep-PU-tation?

HBO Grub Club: Nosworthy

Don Sausser returned with the first review of the new HBO Grub Club pick: Nosworthy. Here’s the start to Don’s review: “With the cook out of town this week and the Nalley’s Chili cans running low what a wonderful time to fulfill the HBO requirement to dine at Nosworthy’s. I arrived at the tall, narrow barn like building across from the Fairgrounds at and like DFO, hadn’t been there since its previous name, The Ground Round. At that hour the place was half full with more folks in the beer bar rather than food area. Noise was not too bad other than two wannabee studs who will need a designated driver. A server quickly brought a menu. My steaming cup of java (don’t like beer) wasn’t bad for bar coffee in the afternoon.” You can read the rest of Don’s review here. (Click on “comments” above to read reviews)

Question: So what are you waiting for? Check out Nosworthy and then tell us how you rate the restaurant on the basis of one to five Huckleberries (judging food, menu, atmosphere, service, and restroom cleanliness)?

Ash Wednesday, Anyone?

Helen Wisniewski, 94, is blessed by auxiliary Bishop John Noonan during Ash Wednesday services at St. Martha’s Catholic Church earlier today in Coral Gables, Fla. (AP Photo/Miami Herald, Al Diaz)

Question: Do you observe Lent? If so, what did you give up this year?

Detainee Release Pleases Delegation

“We are pleased the Haitian court has released eight of the ten arrested without posting bail on the condition they return if needed for questioning. This has been a difficult time for these Idahoans, their families, and friends. We stand ready to assist with any needs that might arise to get them back home as quickly as possible. At this point we do not have any details of their release and return to the United States. “We urge the Haitian court to quickly resolve the legal issues surrounding Laura Silsby and Charisa Coulter. We have asked the State Department to ensure they are treated appropriately, especially considering the medical issues involved, and that they have adequate access to legal representation,” Idaho congressional delegation.

HBO’s Blogosphere — 2.17.10

“While walking the pups at Black Bay a little yellow something caught my eye so I went to investigate,” writes Mrs. Bent/Bent’s Beer Garden. “I brushed back the pine needles and lo and behold…a buttercup along with some crocus sprouts! Around here that is definitely a good sign that spring will make an early appearance.”

HBO Numbers (for Tuesday, Feb. 16): 8848 page-views/5204 unique views

CDixon: Times Caters To The Left

The NYT is the shining example of liberal journalism. It caters to the left and it choses its coverage (and shapes it) accordingly. People who rely exclusively on the NYT for their news would never know about ACORN, Climategate, John Edwards’ affair admission, or any number of big news stories that have taken place in the world during the last year or so. The NYT has become opinion coverage, and in so doing it has lost its right to claim any sort of objective journalism. Any objective piece it puts together nowadays is nothing more than an aberration.

Question: Which do you trust for news more — New York Times or Fox News?

Prayer for the Winter Olympics

Please bless the hockey
and figure skate twirling,
but spare us O Lord
from any more curling.

The Bard of Sherman Avenue

Olympics Spoilers?

As I search newspapers and the APhoto gallery for stories and phones to post here, I see a number of items that tell of winners & losers in the Winter Olympics that won’t be revealed for the general public until later today, including the outcome of the women’s downhill event in which Lindsey Vonn was favored.

Question: Should I post photos or story links re: the outcome of different Olympic events?

Pregnant Curler Leads Canadians

Pregnant Canadian curler Kristie Moore watches from the coach’s box during round robin session 2 of women’s curling at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia, Wednesday. Moore is an alternate and did not play against Japan. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

Question (for Ladies of HBO): Do you participate in sports while you were pregnant?

Groom Jailed Twice On Wedding Day

One marriage got off to a shaky start after the groom was arrested in Lewiston for being drunk and disorderly and then arrested again in Clarkston later for domestic violence against his new bride. Nathan E. Lewis, 21, of Lewiston, was charged Tuesday in Asotin County Superior Court with one count of second-degree assault and interfering with a report of domestic violence following his arrest Monday. Lewis was married on Sunday and allegedly got drunk and was arrested for disorderly conduct in Lewiston … (Asotin County Deputy) Snyder’s report states after Lewis was bailed out of jail, his mother attempted to call law enforcement again when he was “out of control.” … Lewis left and the report states his bride called police to report Lewis assaulted her immediately after getting out of jail/Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Any words of advice for the happy couple?

Study: Kootenai, Bonner Healthy

A new study out of the University of Wisconsin that ranks Idaho’s counties according to a variety of factors that determine health shows that counties in the Panhandle with the most people rank as healthier places overall to live. Kootenai and Bonner counties rank in the top third of all Idaho’s counties in about half of the eight major categories compared. Neither county ranks in the bottom third in any category. Boundary, Benewah and Shoshone counties rank in the bottom third of all counties in Idaho in at least half the categories. Forty-two of 44 Idaho counties were included in the study. Not enough information was available from Camas and Clark counties/Cynthia Taggart, Panhandle Health District. More here.

Question: Are the rankings correct in your estimation — Kootenai and Bonner are among the healthiest counties; Boundary, Benewah, and Shoshone are in the lower tier?

Extra! 8 Of 10 Idaho Detainees Free

A Haitian judge released 8 of the 10 U.S. missionaries arrested on charges of child kidnapping Wednesday, nearly three weeks after they were caught trying to take a group of children out of the quake-stricken country. Laura Silsby and Charisa Coulter will remain. Judge Bernard Saint-Vil said they would be allowed to return home without posting bail if they agreed to return to Haiti for any more questions in the pending investigation. “We expected that,” said Gary Lissade, the attorney for American Jim Allen. It was unclear what would happen to any of the Americans the judge decides to hold/Frank Bajak, Associated Press. More here.

Question: Did the Haiti judge make the right decision? Should he have allowed all 10 missionaries to go free?

SC: Hand-written Notes? Who Cares?

Those nattering nabobs of negativity in the news media have been making fun lately of Sarah Palin for writing crib notes for a speech she was giving in Nashville on her left palm. “Energy,” “taxes” and “lift the American spirit,” her well-manicured hand read. The next day, she wrote “Hi Mom!” on the same hand for a speech she delivered in Texas. Two days after that, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs conducted a press briefing with “eggs,” “milk,” “bread” (crossed out), “hope” and “change” scrawled on his left hand. Hey, at least he didn’t cross out “hope.” Brian Williams, Sean Hannity, Bill O’Reilly, Glenn Beck, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert may not display their mitts on air, but that doesn’t mean they’re not annotated/Steve Crump, Twin Falls Times News. More here.

Question: What kind of prompts do you use when you give a speech?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 2.17.10

Corinna Lankford, right, of Meridian, one of the 10 Americans who were arrested while trying to bus children out of Haiti without proper documents or government permission, reacts to a reporter’s question while being taking back to jail with the other members of her group after a hearing at the court building in Port-au-Prince earlier this month. She is one of eight detainees who have been freed by a Haiti judge. Two others will remain in custody. See story below. (AP Photo/Javier Galeano)

High Noon: Signs Of Spring

Installer Rene Basilio puts up a banner in left field at Tempe Diablo Stadium, the home of the Los Angeles Angels, in preparation for spring training baseball in Tempe, Ariz., earlier today. Angels pitchers and catchers begin workouts on Thursday.(AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

Question: For me, spring arrives unofficially when the pitchers and catchers report to spring training camp for my favorite teams — San Francisco and Seattle. What do you look for, as your first sign of spring?

Menu For Blogfest 2010

  • Taco Buffet
  • Habenero and Buffalo Chicken Wings
  • Pork and Seeds
  • Veggies
  • Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • Assorted Soft Drinks.
Question: Anything missing from the menu provided by Steve Widmyer/Fort Ground Grill for Blogfest 2010 (2 to 4 p.m. Saturday)?

In The News: ‘Pants On The Ground’

Larry Platt, left, sings his hit song “Pants on the Ground” as state Georgia House Speaker David Ralston applauds during a legislative session in the House chamber at the capital earlier today in Atlanta. The self professed general in the civil rights movement was honored by the state senate for his work in civil rights, political activism and his hit song. YouTube video here. (AP Photo/John Amis)

Question: Can anyone explain why this song, “Pants on the Ground,” has become such a sensation?

AM Scanner Traffic — 2.17.10

  • 11:46 a.m. Caller wants to know if his neighbor has a permit for an exotic animal — a bobcat.
  • 11:21 a.m. Waterfront Ridge Drive resident reports that his mail is being stolen.
  • 10:55 a.m. Out-of-state owner reports that a washer and a dryer have been stolen from his rental.
  • 10:45 a.m. Coeur d’Alene Inn is accidentally faxing 911 center.
  • 10:32 a.m. Newcastle Lane/Hayden caller reports that a boat and trailer has been abandoned along the road nearby.
  • 10:21 a.m. Big black dog without a collar is running loose in front of the Kindercenter/Hayden.
  • 10:09 a.m. Local female has questions re: getting her sister and her nice out of an abusive relationship in Texas.
  • 9:26 a.m. 40ish Post Falls female who recently had hip surgery is unable to get up from her chair after sleeping in it all night.
  • 9:02 a.m. Don has questions re: shooting a pistol in a public area.
  • 9:01 a.m. Boileau’s Marina/Bayview reports that an unauthorized Bayliner is parked in one of its slips.
  • 8:55 a.m. A s/b Montana pickup w/a camper is crossing double-yellow lines to pass on H95 @ M/P 455 (Careywood Road).
  • 8:12 a.m. Caller is following a vehicle that was driven onto sidewalks several times, including once at the traffic circle near Coeur d’Alene Nazarene Church.

Hart Fights Airport Whole-Body Scans

If Rep. Phil Hart, R-Hayden, has his way in the Idaho Legislature, whole-body scanners won’t be used as a primary screening method at Idaho airports anytime soon.  Hart believes the scanners, while a good tool for security, are too invasive and unproven medically for use in the state. Hart introduced the plan before the House State Affairs Committee Tuesday, saying that the scanners violate Article I, Section 17 of the Idaho Constitution, which holds “unreasonable searches and seizures” without a warrant as unlawful.  He said that it is the intent of the Legislature to find a balance between the security of public facilities and the “inalienable rights of man” as found in Article I, Section I of the Idaho Constitution/Dustin Hurst, Idaho Reporter. More here.

Question: Do you agree with Rep. Phil Hart that whole-body scanners represents an ‘unreasonable search and seizure’ in violation of the state Constitution?

Tribe Seeks Public Backing For HB 500

Below: Tribe spokesman Marc Stewart discusses HB 500 (click on arrow)

The Coeur d’Alene Indian Tribe has posted the following plea (w/contact information for legislators) on its Web site re: House Bill 500: “Support the House Bill No. 500, the State and Indian Tribal Cooperative Law Enforcement Act, which encourages much needed cooperative law enforcement agreements between Idaho Indian Tribes and Counties. If a tribe and county are unable to reach an agreement, this law will allow Idaho POST-certified police officers working for an Indian Tribe to enforce state laws against anyone breaking them within reservation boundaries.”

Question: Do you planned to get involved in this issue?

Senate Panel OKs Health Freedom Bill

The Senate State Affairs Committee, after a nearly two-hour hearing in which committee members raised serious legal concerns about the bill, nevertheless voted 6-3 this morning in favor of the “Idaho Health Freedom Act,” a measure that bans the enforcement of any federal requirement for individuals or businesses to purchase health insurance and requires the state Attorney General to go to court to fight any such requirements/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Do you support Rep. Jim Clark’s “Idaho Health Freedom Act”?

Idahoan Picks Westminster’s Best

Sadie, a Scottish terrier, is photographed with her handler, Gabriel Rangel, center, and judge Elliot Weiss (of Meridian, Idaho), left, after winning best in show at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden in New York, Tuesday. Weiss was the first Idahoan to pick the Best In Show dog at Westminster. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Question: Is your dog worthy of Westminster consideration?

Harwood: Tribe Has Changed Not Us

Benewah County has had the same county commissioners for more than 30 years. The prosecuting attorney has been in office for 16 years and the same sheriff who successfully started cross-deputizing with the Coeur d’Alene Tribe in the 1980s is still in office. What has changed over that time is the tribal leadership. The cooperative agreement on cross-deputizing, which worked well for much of the last 30 years, has broken down in recent years. n amid a lot of finger-pointing and name-calling. Despite what you might see in news stories and commentaries on this issue, the county officials are not all to blame. They have negotiated and operated in good faith with tribal authorities on cross-deputizing and a variety of other issues for more than three decades/Rep. Dick Harwood, St. Maries Gazette-Record. More here.

Question: What do you make of Rep. Harwood’s defense of Benewah County officials in their spat with the Coeur d’Alene Indian Tribe?

Press: Start Comp Plan Process Over

President Obama has expressed willingness to start over on what he called the most important platform of his presidency, a massive overhaul of the nation’s health care system. We encourage the Kootenai County Board of Commissioners to make the same decision for the good of their constituents and start over with the enigmatic comprehensive plan. We understand the urge by some to just get this thing over with. It’s taken three years, hundreds of meetings and countless hours to reach this point/Mike Patrick, Coeur d’Alene Press. More here.

Question: Do you agree with the Coeur d’Alene Press that the county’s proposed comp plan is bogged down, and commissioners should start the lengthy process over?

Obama: Stimulus Saved Us

President Obama hailed the success of his controversial $787 billion stimulus legislation on Wednesday, saying on the first anniversary of his signing it that it helped prevent a second Great Depression and is responsible for the jobs of two million Americans. Obama’s remarks capped an extensive public relations push from the administration and its Democratic allies to rehabilitate the public perception of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which critics contend has been a failure/Michael D. Shear and Alec MacGillis, Washington Post. More here.

Question: Do you agree with President Obama that his controversial $787B stimulus legislation saved us from a second Great Depression?

HBO Poll: Charter Schools Help

  • HBO Poll: 35 of 54 respondents (65%) said charter schools have benefitted Idaho’s education system. 14 of 54 (26%) said that they have not.
  • Nuclear Power: 73 of 97 respondents (75%) support President Obama’s plans to build more nuclear power plants.
  • New Poll: What is your impression of Coeur d’Alene’s urban renewal agency, Lake City Development Corp?

AM: LCDC To Discuss Rink Today

Milt Turley points to wolf tracks in Avery, Idaho on Tuesday, Feb. 2.This is a bumber sticker on his truck. You can find Becky Kramer’s story on life w/wolves on the St. Joe here. (Kathy Plonka/SR)

Question: Would you like to shoot a wolf?

George: Lighten Up On St. Maries

Honest George: Today the population in the City (of St. Maries) is as diverse as anywhere else in Idaho and eastern Washington. However, there is a small core of people that dislike dealing with the Tribe. This dislike is so strong that I personally lost a friend of 20 years because I refused to sign his petition condemning the Tribe over some cigarette-tobacco issue. This is a small group — draw a three mile radius circle around the town and most of them would live outside the circle. (Including Digger’s folks.) So, please lighten up on St. Maries - they are good people. Full comment below.

Question: Obviously a few bad apples can ruin the perception of an area (see: Aryan Nations, Kootenai County). Do you think this is the case in St. Maries and eastern Benewah County?

Dental Pain

Reluctant was I
To have mass extractions
But now I’m glad
I took those actions

Why am I happy?
I shall explain…
I sure don’t miss
That dental PAIN!


Question: Are you afraid to go to the dentist?

Druid: It’s Bigotry Pure & Simple

Arch Druid (Another happy Benewah reader): The last time I had ever heard, “Go back to where I came from,” was back in grade school. And being the little smart mouth that I was, I quite simply asked, at around 10 years old, how was I supposed to get back inside my mother? Even some 40 odd years later, I still remember that. “Go back to where you came from,” is pure bigotry no matter how you slice it. It says that there are certain people who simply can not handle difference of opinion in a diverse country.

Question: Have you ever been told by someone: “Go back where you came from”?

Heller: Olympics Silver Lining

Joe Heller/Hellertoons

JA: Good People, Bias In St. Maries

JohnA: We live closer to St. Maries than CDA so we spend a lot of time in that unique community. I can honestly say there are some great people in that city, but it does seem you are traveling back in time when you cross the Joe and enter town. There is certainly a bias toward the Tribe, for some reason, and that is unfortunate since they could be a huge economic engine for St. Maries. I have seen signs that things may be changing, like the willingness of their transit system (via Valley Vista) to tie in to the Tribe’s CityLink route at Plummer. I hope this is a sign that times are changing and the county can begin to partner in other ways with their properous neighbor.

Question: Which community in North Idaho do you consider the most behind the times? 

PS: Kenneth Starr To Lead Baylor

Baylor University freshman Dan Dinh, right, along with other students demonstrate in front of the Bill Daniel Student Center on campus where new Baylor President Kenneth Starr met with faculty and students today in Waco, Texas. Starr, the former independent prosecutor whose work led to President Bill Clinton’s impeachment, replaces John M. Lilley. (AP Photo/Waco Tribune-Herald, Duane A. Laverty)

Question: Do you think Kenneth Starr will become a good president at Baylor University in Houston, Texas?

HBO @ 6 Wild Card — 2.16.10

Huckleberries Online turns 6 today. That’s right, I launched this blog on Feb. 16, 2004. I don’t know how many years 6 is in blog years. A dog ages 7 years per human year. I’d calculate that a blog ages a decade for every human year. Sometimes, I feel as though I have. At other times, I feel like I’m just getting started here. It’s been a long, crazy ride with people coming and some going. Cyber relationships can be fragile. We’ll celebrate the HBO blogiversary from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Fort Ground Grill. The SR will pick up the eats and the pop. I hope to see you there. Now, for your Wild Card …

Idahoan To Judge Westminister Best

Elliott Weiss woke up one morning in college, realized he didn’t want to spend his life sitting at a desk and became a dog handler and dog-show judge instead. Now Weiss, who lives in Eagle, will be the judge for the culminating event in the world’s most prestigious dog show, the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden in New York City. It’s the first time in Westminster’s 134-year history that the Best in Show event has been judged by an Idahoan. “We’re honored to have Elliott,” said David Frei, direction of communications for the Westminster Kennel Club. “He understands dogs, he has a working knowledge of the breeds and he’s been there as a handler. He’s the kind of person we want to be the face of the world’s greatest dog show”/Tim Woodward, Idaho Statesman. More here. (AP Photo/Idaho Statesman, Shawn Raecke, of Elliott Weiss with his 8-month-old English Setter Shiloh near their home outside Eagle)

Question: Which dog breed when you rate as the best?

PM Headlines — 2.16.10

A helicopter flies past the crater of Mount St. Helens this afternoon, during the search for a climber who fell 1,500 feet into the dormant crater of the volcano Monday in Washington state. veteran climber Joseph Bohlig, who fell 1,500 feet into the crater atop Mount St. Helens. Bohlig’s body has been recovered after he spent more than a day in the snow, authorities said Tuesday. Story below. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

APhoto Of The Day — 2.16.10

Lying on the floor under a table, a makeup artist paints the toenails of a model backstage before the Halston fall 2010 collection is shown Monday, during Fashion Week in New York. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Citing the high cost of payroll taxes, Halston decides to pay some of their help under the table — Herb.
  • 2. Mary Souza is caught hiding under the Mayor’s chair at the City Counsel meeting during LCDC’s annual report — CoeurGenX.
  • 3. After discovering a small problem with her foot, the makeup artist fixes it, telling the model the solution was a petty cure — JohnA.
  • HM: Pecky

PM Scanner Traffic — 2.16.10

  • 5:55 p.m. Child reports hearing a screen door slam next door and a whimper @ Vinton & 2nd/Hauser. But parent explains to 911 that it was only a cat beating up on a dog.
  • 5:27 p.m. 2 women say they were harassed by a male in a pickup w/a camper @ 1st & Spokane/CdA.
  • 5:24 p.m. Timothy Allen, the 17YO who escaped from custody at the tribal police court earlier today, has been recaptured near Plummer High. He’s the same teen who led police on high-speed chase earlier this month.
  • 5:07 p.m. Caller reports a wanted man from Spokane is waiting in line at Super 1 market.
  • 4:56 p.m. 14YO male in black hoodie has run away from 1900 block of 5th/CdA.
  • 4:55 p.m. Caller reports that a blue pickup is using a tow rope to pull a disabled vehicle back and forth along Twinlow/Rathdrum.
  • 4:25 p.m. A female in another Hayden neighborhood reports a scraggly male with younger females in a van is offering to clean her carpet.
  • 4:15 p.m. Kohls has caught a shoplifter.
  • 3:58 p.m. Male juvenile on Cedar Mountain Road/Athol reports a heavy-set male w/a mohawk was chasing his sister in a red vehicle.
  • 3:49 p.m. Caller reports that 3 males in a white vehicle may be smoking crack on Pleasantview/Post Falls.
  • 3:26 p.m. Christa wants to remedy the false report she filed with authorities a few years ago.
  • More below

Senate Rejects Homeless Exemption

Legislation that had unanimously passed the House to grant a temporary, two-year sales tax exemption to non-profit homeless shelters in Idaho has been killed - unanimously - in the Senate Local Government & Taxation Committee. Rep. Branden Durst, D-Boise, sponsor of HB 435, said after the vote, “I think they’re allowing their philosophy to cloud their judgment on people’s needs.” Committee members said they just couldn’t support continuing to pass individual sales tax exemptions, and that they can’t say that one charity is more deserving of a tax break than another/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Question: Which Idaho chamber did the right thing — the House, which voted unanimously to allow the sales tax exemption for homeless shelters? Or the Senate, which unanimously rejected the House bill?

3 Men, 2 From CdA, Hurt In Crash

Three men were seriously injured in a rollover crash early Tuesday morning about a mile outside of Renton. The van was going west on state Route 900 around 12:25 a.m. when the driver lost control, and the van slid off the pavement, over a ditch and rolled over onto its side. All three men inside were ejected from the vehicle. The 23-year-old driver from Coeur D’Alene, Idaho, was taken to Renton’s Valley Medical Center where he was reported to be in stable condition. The two passengers, a 21-year-old Coeur D’Alene man and a 29-year-old man from Santa Cruz, Calif., were rushed to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle where they were listed in critical condition/KOMO-TV. More here.

Bonnie Blair Returns To Olympics

Former U.S. Olympic speed skater Bonnie Blair attends the unveiling of her image on U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame Tribute at USA House in Vancouver, British Columbia on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Question: Which U.S. Winter Olympian is your all-time favorite?

To His Abscess

So many people will now gain
from thee, my swollen pile of pain:
the doctor and the nurse I’ll pay
to make sure that you go away;
the tech who’s paid to run the test;
the clerk who sends out that request;
the pharma firm that sells the med;
the drugstore too will get some bread.

You’re so much more than blood and pus— you’re economic stimu-lus.

The Bard of Sherman Avenue

Wyoming SD Bans Anti-Hate Banners

School board members in Platte County’s School District 1 have declined to reconsider their decision to ban banners promoting an anti-discrimination campaign because a gay rights group is helping sponsor the program. More than 50 parents, students and area residents packed the board’s Monday night meeting in Wheatland, many there to ask the board to reconsider its vote to pull the “No Place for Hate” banners from local schools. The program from the Anti-Defamation League is designed to teach young people about tolerance and respecting differences. District administrators removed the banners after parents and school board members raised concern because the banners list the Gay and Lesbian Fund for Colorado as a sponsor/Associated Press.

Question: What do you make of this controversy?

Another Happy Benewah Reader …

… reacts to my comment piece in the Handle Extra: “The spokesman will hire anyone, you need to go back where ever you came from!! I canceled my subscription,  and will have not have  a good thing to say about you or the paper of LIES/Rudy Brandvold.

DFO: If we all went back to the place we or our forefathers came from, the problem w/cross-deputization in Benewah County would be solved.

Dickau Refuses To Quit NBA Dream

Dan Dickau feels pulled in a couple of directions. There’s the sharp tug of knowing that his wife, Heather, is at their home in Battle Ground, Wash., temporarily corralling their three young children. Dickau has been away only a couple days and misses them already. Then there’s the game of basketball, which grabs Dickau and won’t let go, compelling him to take one more shot at returning to the NBA. “It’s hard on both of us,” Dickau said. “I know it’s probably harder on her because she’s handling things on her own right now. But, 10 years from now, I don’t want to sit back and (say), ‘Man, I should have given it one more shot.’ And she knows that.” Dickau’s “one more shot” starts in Fort Wayne tonight. After being cut by the Phoenix Suns in training camp, the six-year NBA veteran looked into playing in Europe but decided last week to put his name in the D-League pool/Reggie Hayes, Fort Wayne News-Sentinel. More here. H/T: SportsLink.

Question: Why haven’t former Zag players made a bigger splash in the NBA?

Going For Gold In Hockey Rink

USA goalie Ryan Miller tries to cover the puck during the second period of a preliminary round men’s ice hockey game against Switzerland at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

Question: Which would you rather watch — a hockey game or a soccer match?

Obama Pushes Nuclear Power Plants

President Obama told an enthusiastic audience of union officials on Tuesday that the Energy Department had approved a loan guarantee intended to underwrite construction of two nuclear reactors in Georgia, with taxpayers picking up much of the financial risk. If the project goes forward, it would be the first nuclear reactor built in the United States since the 1970s. In a speech in Lanham, Md., Mr. Obama announced government approval of an $8.3 billion loan guarantee to help the Southern Company build two reactors in Burke County, Ga., near Augusta/Matthew L. Wald, New York Times. More here

Jeanie: Who’s Normal?

JeanieS (Re: Fat film director tossed off flight): How much must a person weigh to be too fat to fly? almost makes me try for a joke, but the ensuing thread makes me question some real prejudices here. Fattie? Normal? How, actually, is normal defined - especially in a country with a myriad of ethnicities and cultures. What if normal were defined as “6‘2” 180 pounds, size 38 pants.” I wouldn’t even qualify. Not tall enough. Not heavy enough. Not big enough. Would it round out the equation if you averaged people by two, to make them both “whatever normal is?”

Question: What size and shape of person would you consider normal?

Morford: Ode To Whipped White Male

At the San Francisco Chronicle, columnist Mark Morford writes an ode to the sad ‘n squishy white guys in American. Quoth: “Do you feel any empathy for their perilous plight, their incessant sexual frustration, their terrible taste in light domestic beer and that tell-tale slumping paunch, as they are slowly crushed under the relentless demands of their wives, the ruthless wail of their kids, the frightening instability of their job status, all overlaid by a thoroughly devastating female empowerment movement that has successfully mocked, derided and shamed every formerly proud dumb-guy thing — cars, beer, barbecue equipment, porn — down to a quivering puddle of don’t-even-think-about-it?” More here.

Question: Are you concerned re: the plight of the white American male?

HBO’s Inland Northwest — 2.16.10

Canadian artist Rich Loffler poses with his 1,200 pound sculpture of Outlaw, a famed bucking bull, at Art Castings of Montana in Belgrade, Mont. Staying on Outlaw was such a daunting task that rodeo organizers made him a “bounty bull,” meaning the first rider to hold on would get a special payout. As more riders failed, the payout grew. (AP Photo/Bozeman Daily Chronicle, Nick Wolcott)

High Noon: A Bet Of A Lifetime

It took bravado, persistence and a $10 bet for a dashing Connecticut Yankee to win the heart of a petite Texas belle. Nick Gaynos and a friend were having drinks in the Bamboo Room of the Hotel Californian in Fresno, in the spring of 1943. Both men were officers stationed nearby at Camp Pinedale. Long stalks of bamboo separated the bar from the dining room. Gaynos peered through the bamboo and saw two young women having dinner. He called his friend over. “I said, ‘See that redhead? I’m going to marry her,’” Gaynos recalled. “My friend said, ‘No way!’ I said, ‘I’ll bet ya $10.” And the wager was on/Cindy Hval, Handle Extra. More here


Question: When did you last place a bet and what did you bet on?

HBO Poll: Do Away With The Filibuster

Monday Poll: 36 of 63 (57%) of the respondents said they’d like to see Congress do away with the filibuster. 22 of 63 (35%) support the procedure which allows a minority party to stall legislation.

Wolf Hunt Poll: 48 of 96 (50%) of you Berry Pickers weren’t satisfied with Idaho’s first hunting season for wolves because the hunters didn’t kill enough of the varmints. 23 of 96 (24%) said the hunt shouldn’t have been allowed, while 21 of 96 (22%) said the proper number of wolves were harvested. Only 4 (4%) said too many wolves were harvested.

Today’s Question (in the left rail): Has Idaho education been served well by the advent of charter schools?

AM Scanner Traffic — 2.16.10

  • 11:35 a.m. Coeur d’Alene tribal police are seeking agency assistance and a police dog to help find a handcuffed prisoner who ran out of tribal court.
  • 10:25 a.m. Ambulance is responding for an 80ish male whose pulse and respiration dropped during surgery @ North Idaho Eye Institute on Lincoln Way.
  • 10:09 a.m. An unoccupied, gray Subaru Outback is blocking the entrance to Kootenai County Building & Grounds shop.
  • 9:26 a.m. Caller believes that horses in a pasture need hay near H95 & Garwood.
  • 8:37 a.m. A silver truck and trailer with “IBI” on the side is driving recklessly on I-90, near the Huetter rest stop, according to a caller.
  • 8:34 a.m. Several cars have almost hit a black Lab running in traffic on Talon Lane, CdA.
  • 8:33 a.m. Lakeland High wants an officer to handle an unspecified juvenile problem.

DFO: Huckleberries @ 6

It’s hard to believe that I’m 6 years into this cyberspace experiment called Huckleberries Online (and No Holds Barred and Hot Potatoes before that). I started this blog six years ago to provide a conservative voice in support of George Bush’s successful re-election. Since 2004, the blog has leaned right and then left in the comments section. About every six to nine months something happens that causes the blog to reinvent itself. The first of those occurrences was the addition of a comments section in the fall of the first year. Which boosted traffic and produced a lot of headaches for me, as I had my first encounter with trolls (before there was software to block them). People have come and gone from here. Many more have stayed and become part of HBO’s fabric. More than once, individuals have predicted the death of HBO as a result of one of these reinventions or exoduses. But the hits keep coming. The intense interaction here has pushed me toward the middle. The comments section is almost perfectly balanced in terms of conservatives and liberals (although hard-core partisans on either sider probably don’t agree). I launched Huckleberries Online on Feb. 16, 2004, by warning early readers to “fasten your seatbelts.” Huckleberries may be tamer and kinder than it was in the past. But it’s not totally tame. And the pack here can turn on you at any minute. So, it might be a good idea to keep your seatbelts fastened …

Question: How long have you been part of the HBO blogosphere?

Sandpoint’s Holland Spins Out In Final

Mike Robertson of Canada, right, leads, Nate Holland of the USA, left during the snowboard cross final at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia, Monday. Shortly afterward, Holland, a Sandpoint native, spun out and finished fourth in the race, one spot away from a medal, which was won by USA’s Seth Wescott. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Question: Is it enough to compete in the Olympics? Or do you have to win a medal as an athlete expected to win one to feel good about your Olympics experience?

CHRG Swallows OpenCDA, Seizes Up

Big things are happening at OpenCHRG, according to Mary Souza. Seems is now the blog arm of Citizens for Honest & Responsible Government. But the CHRG Web site has encountered technical difficulties and will be down for an 8 count. But Mary assures her readers — both of ‘em — that the site is now in good hands because it has an expert in Web site development.

Tussauds Puts Presidents On Parade

Nine new wax figures of American presidents are seen at Madame Tussauds in Washington, on Tuesday. The attraction plans to open a new gallery featuring all 44 American president figures in the fall of 2010. Back row left to right are Andrew Jackson, Gerald Ford, James Garfield, William Henry Harrison, James Buchanan, Grover Cleveland, and Chester Alan Arthur. Front row are John Quincy Adams, left, and Andrew Johnson. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Question: Who’s your favorite president that’s not named Lincoln or Washington?

Greg Discovers Mother Of All Potholes

Colleague Greg Lee reports to Huckleberries Online that he has discovered the mother of all potholes, at Atlas & Seltice Way, in front of the old Stimson (IFI) Lumber mill. It’s an alignment buster, according to Greg. Motorists have to drive into the other lane on turns to avoid it. Quoth Greg: ”If I had gotten out of my car and stepped in it I would have been in it up to my ears. It’s the second time this winter the pothole has needed attention.”

Question: Have any of you encountered a significant pothole this year? Where?