Posts tagged: DFO
As you know, I'm not a fan of the attempt by the Reagan Republicans to insert their endorsees into nonpartisan offices in Coeur d'Alene under the name “Republican.” I like RR founders Ron Lahr and Jeff Ward. But I consider the successes they've had so far (think: Coeur d'Alene Councilman Steve Adams and, mebbe, NIC Trustee Todd Banducci) has hurt good government in my hometown. However, there is a silver lining to Ron & Jeff's pedal-to-the-metal attempt to make everything about Hard Right partisanship. The Coeur d'Alene School Board and Kootenai Hospital District campaigns have come under intense scrutiny. In the past, these nonpartisan elections have been snoozers for all but insiders. Ditto for the North Idaho College trustee elections. I've never voted in a hospital election. In fact, I wouldn't know who the candidates are, without the decision by the Reagan Republicans to attempt to expand their political turf by establishing a beach head at KMC with two endorsees. The Reagan Republicans' takeover of the controversial Coeur d'Alene School Board is another example of the heightening attention paid to this important nonpartisan election. Trustee forums have attracted good audiences, including a packed one at the Mica Grange. The rise of Balance North Idaho is a direct result of the controversial action by the Reagan Republicans to insert partisanship into nonpartisan offices. The Reagan Republicans deserve credit in spotlighting offices that draw poor voter turnouts. That should trigger a bigger turnout than usual. I'm hoping, for the sake of good local government, however, that most of their candidates lose/DFO.
We saw again last night why ideologues are bad replacements for competent elected local officials who put community needs and values ahead of personal agendas. Councilman Steve Adams, until now an interesting distraction who refuses to support any budgetary item tied to federal funding, placed the financial stability of Coeur d'Alene in danger by flipflopping on judicial confirmation of the federally mandated expansion of the wastewater treatment plant. He supported it. Then, he didn't. I was amazed, as I watched Coeur d'Alene TV Channel 19, how Adams waved off warnings from City Attorney Mike Gridley and wastewater treatment plant manage Sid Fredrickson re: his threat of appeal for pending judicial confirmation of the project. They said he could be subjecting the city of Coeur d'Alene to fines of $37,500 per day and $1M per month with his demand for a public vote on the scheduled expansion. More below.
NPR just posted “All Things Considered” story by Martin Kaste re: Tina Jacobson case vs. Linda Cook (pictured), including this excerpt from Yours Truly: “But Dave Oliveria, who runs Huckleberries Online, the Spokesman-Review blog where the offending comment appeared, feels differently. “To have free speech in this community, I think you have to have anonymity,” Oliveria argues. Huckleberries Online covers Coeur d'Alene and northern Idaho, small communities where there's a constant battle between the factions of the dominant Republican Party. “In this town, there's so much infighting, if some of these folks identified themselves, they couldn't make these comments,” Oliveria says. “I have a lot of folks online here that are in a lot of key positions in the community.” If his bosses at the Spokesman-Review required real names, he says, it would kill his blog — and deprive the community of a crucial forum. But Oliveria also admits he can only keep that discussion constructive by spending a lot of time monitoring it, and blocking the trolls. More here. Audio available at 4 p.m.
Question: Did I describe the political climate here accurately?
Kosh Shioya and DFO during a break in sets at the final appearance of local fave band Motorboat at City Park last Sunday. Steve Bickel's leaving the band and Coeur d'Alene for greener fields at the chamber of commerce in former hometown of Huntington Beach, Calif. Kosh participates in other local bands. H/T to Kosh & Motorboat for performing my favorite song of theirs upon my request, Israel Kmakawiwo'ole's version of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” You can visit Kosh's site to hear his music & see a list of performance dates here. Meanwhile, Chris Guggemos of Handshake Productions will resume his summer series at City Park Sunday, July 1, with country-rock band, County Line. You can see the full schedule here. Handshake Productions concert series at Fort Sherman Square in downtown Coeur d'Alene begins Tuesday, June 26, here.
Question: How often do you attend the free concert series at City Park, Fort Sherman Park, Hayden City Park & Rathdrum, presented by Chris Guggemos' Handshake Productions? How about the concert series at Riverstone Park?
Dan Gookin (re: Gookin's State of the Union to Pachyderms): Thans(sic) for the misinformation, Dave, but it’s what I’ve come to expect from someone who isn’t willing to give me a fair shake. Your bias against me is overt. Whatever. This morning I wasn’t asked to predict the outcome of the recall, and I didn’t make any such a prediction. I referred to the four being recalled, not that they were “going” to be recalled. Your “berry picker” is not a journalist, after all, and you weren’t there.
DFO: @ 11:30 a.m., Dan Gookin challenged the report made out front re: what he said to the North Idaho Pachyderm Club this morning, denying he’d said that Mayor Sandi Bloem & the 3 targeted City Council members would be recalled. Now, I have the exact wording from his speech today: “Those four that, you know, are being recalled … they are not listening to the public and they don’t understand that … umm … this is a tremendous burden.” That’s dang close to what was originally reported … Also, the individual who quoted Dan told him before the meeting that he was taking notes, photos and a recording for Huckleberries Online — at which point, my Berry Picker said, Gookin outed him to others near them at the back of the room in a loud voice. My Berry Picker also offered to let Gookin look at his notes after the meeting to ensure that they were accurate. But Gookin declined to do so. You judge whether or not the proper steps were taken to ensure accuracy — and whether or not the first version was very far off from what was reported: “Those four who are going to be recalled … . ”.
Some of you have asked whether KVNI 1080 (ESPN 1080) provided a copy of my interview with Kerri Thoreson Monday morning. The station graciously did so this morning. You can listen to it here by clicking link above. Kerri provided the photo.
Super Sub Cindy snapped this photo of DFO in the foreground with Bent, Mechanic Man, and JeanieSpokane in the background at Blogfest 2012 at the Fort Ground Grill Saturday. You can read about the latest Blogfest, celebrating the 9th anniversary of HucksOnline, and see more photos of the event here.
I'm rarely as baffled by a local election as I am by the one in Coeur d'Alene today. My gut tells me that Reagan Republican candidates Dan Gookin and Steve Adams are in good shape. They have the gale-wind support of dominant Republicans and 3 issues on their side (in descending order): McEuen Field, high-end city salaries, and perennial whipping boy LCDC. A long-time resident of Coeur d'Alene told me at the Viks playoff game last week that he's usually a Bloem administration supporter. But the lack of an advisory vote on McEuen Field bothers him. Another long-time resident told me he supports Sandi Bloem & her council because he's tired of seeing McEuen Field under-utilized. Gookin's attempt to tie well-known, well-respected former legislator George Sayler to unpopular President Barack Obama underscored the lengths challengers/Republicans were willing to go to win these spots. It's hard to match that passion on the other side. I hope I'm wrong. Edinger, despite his misstep w/nepotism involving his grandchildren, should survive for another term on the council. I expect Hayden Mayor Ron McIntire and Post Falls Councilman Kerri Thoreson & Skip Hissong to win re-election, too. The race between quiet-but-competent incumbent Scott Grant & Reagan Republican-backed Joe Malloy will test RR partisan clout in Post Falls — DFO.
Question: How successful will Reagan Republican candidates be tonight?
At Blogfest 2011 (aka Hucks Summer Bentfest), Don Sausser catches DFO & DanG hobnobbing while waiting for Bent to finish preparing the sumptious chicken & beef barbecue for the event at Steve Widmyer's Fort Ground Grill. You write the cutline. You can see the rest of Don's photos here. (The winner of this cutline contest will be awarded a $10 gift certificate to the Fort Ground Grill.)
Photos of Blogfest 2011:
DFO: Monster H/T to Steve Widmyer & his Fort Ground Grill for hosting Blogfest 2011; KeithinCDA for doling out the latest home-made brews prepared by Bent, Stickman, & him; and for Bent and his amazing BBQ.
DFO and his daughter-in-law, Sweet Stephanie, meet “Bull Alligator” outside Ben Hill Griffin Stadium at the University of Florida during DFO's recent vacay to Gainesville. You write the cutline.
Why does the relatively small Spokane airport have full-body scanners are security checkpoints, when a large airport like the one in Orlando, Fla., doesn't? I got virtually naked for the TSA — a female security worker at that — for the first time Saturday, Feb. 5, at the Spokane airport en route to Orlando. The X-ray exam was over in moments. I didn't even have time to blush. And the guy with the plastic gloves smiled when he waved me through the security checkpoint. I'm glad I didn't have to get up close and personal with him, too. However, I was surprised that the jam-packed Orlando airport on the return trip had the traditional security stations that require you to strip off belts, shoes, and anything else that makes the alarm ring. But no body scanners. I don't know if I felt safer after going through the airport at Spokane than I did at Orlando — DFO.
Question: Have you been through a full-body scanner at airport security yet? What do you think of the process?
If I tell you a secret, will you promise not to tell anyone else? I've been driving with an expired driver's license for the last 2-plus months. Yeah, yeah, I know we discussed expiration dates for driver's licenses some time ago. But I completely forgot that my license expired on my birthday Nov. 20 — until an observant airport security guard at the Orlando, Fla., airport spotted my oversight Saturday morning. I didn't know why she was holding staring at my license while she carefully turned it over a couple of times. “Do you know this license is expired?” she asked, in a voice that wasn't that pleasant. Hunh?! was the only reply I could muster. I imagined myself being stuck at the Orlando airport until I could figure out a way to prove who I was. The guard continued: “You know this is 2011 and not 2010, don't you.” I was a deer in the headlights. Mebbe she pitied me because I didn't look like a domestic terrorist. Or mebbe she was a Florida Gators fan. I was wearing my new Florida Gators T-shirt en route back home, with stops in Philadelphia and Denver. She let me continue through security. Moments ago, I re-upped at the local DMV. I'm legal again — and don't have to worry about an expired license for another 8 years.
Question: Do you know when your driver's license expires?
My Huckleberries Online crowd is easily distracted. I posted a bushy-tailed predator photographed along the Kalispell Bay beach path by the Priest Lake Photos Facebook crowd on Tuesday – and asked whether the critter was a coyote or wolf. The overwhelming consensus (including from the Sandpoint F&G office) leaned “Wile E.” Too small and the markings were wrong for Br’er Wolf. Then, the conversation focus switched to the proper pronunciation for “coyote.” One claimed “coyote” with a long-E is a dead giveaway that the speaker is a darn Easterner. Another that KYE-yoat indicates that the speaker is a Zane Gray/Louis L’Amour fan. A third opined: “The English cognate ‘coyote’ is taken directly from the Spanish word of the same spelling, in which the final “e” is pronounced (co-yo’-tay).” Read more.
Kerri Thoreson, host of the Monday morning KVNI Main Street show, wants to know if any of you have questions that you want her to ask me when I’m on her show Monday morning (7:40 on AM-1080). Kerri posts this comment: “For anyone outside of the KVNI AM1080 broadcast range, at www.kvni.com there’s a listen live button that will let you listen on your computer. And in the interest of fair play, since Dave always solicits questions from the gallery for his blog interviews, who has a question they’d like me to ask Dave on Monday morning?”
Question: Is there anything you want to know about me? (I reserve the right to take the 5th)
Overall, for the year, precipitation is running above normal – about .75 inches above normal for Spokane and a whopping 4 inches above normal in Coeur d’Alene. Those first low elevation snowflakes may be just around the corner as some chilly, moist air makes its way into the region by the middle of this week. Average snowfall for Spokane in the month of November is 6.4 inches. Coeur d’Alene averages 7.8 inches/Michelle Boss, Handle Extra. More here.
Question: What do you have yet to do to get ready for winter?
I know why local Democrats don’t field more candidates to oppose to oppose Republicans in Kootenai County races. It’s hard to persuade someone to raise thousands of dollars, take 6 months of their life off, and expect to be beaten by 55-60% of the vote. But a situation like Phil Hart’s begs the question. Why not simply get someone to serve as a name holder — or place holder — in case the Republican melts down? The Demo wouldn’t have to raise all that much money or campaign hard. Just be there to hold a Republican accountable for his actions — or votes in the previous term — in debates and newspaper interviews. It’s next to impossible to try to defeat Hart with a write-in candidacy. I applaud Demo David Larsen for stepping up as a write-in candidate in the spring primary, so House Education Chairman Bob Nonini will have to explain some of his curious positions on education, including his behind-the-scenes opposition to UI’s attempt to sign a lease for a building in Coeur d’Alene’s future Education Corridor. It’s a shame to see Rep. Phil Hart, with his myriad tax problems, running unopposed in the general election — DFO.
Here I am in the bowels of Invesco Field (Mile High Stadium, where the Denver Broncos play ball), during a tour of the facility at an honors banquet for UColorado Denver medical school graduates Friday. For some reason, this sign caught my eye. You write the cutline.
As many of you know, son, Seth, graduated from medical school at UColorado Denver Friday, with his medical degree as well as a doctorate in neuro-science. Here, you see the young man shortly after being awarded his second degree last week, along with Mrs. O, Amy Dearest and me. Just wanted to let you know that I wasn’t entirely goofing off during my 5-plus days away from the blog. My daughter-in-law was handling the photo duties.
I didn’t realize that Dennis Mansfield or Jim Clark was taking a photo of my interview w/Raul Labrador (via Labrador Twitter) — or I might have tidied up Huckleberries Central a bit. See all my toys? I enjoyed meeting Labrador. Indeed, he’s a hard guy not to like. Wished more politicians could smile and remain friendly with the opposition no matter whether they agree or disagree.
Question: Is your desk better organized than mine?
At OpenCDA.com, the usual suspects are in full meltdown mode over Jim Brannon’s challenge to Councilman Mike Kennedy for a do-over election during the May primaries. In their usual fit of paranoia, one of the three regular commenters on the site believe the posts yesterday was my way of distancing myself from Kennedy, a regular commenter at Huckleberries Online since almost the beginning. I don’t have time to explain to the inmates at that cyber institution what constitutes news and what doesn’t online. The thread was suppose to address the reason for Brannon writing the challenge letter to Kennedy. But quickly degenerated into a critique of the current “Coffee with the Mayor” program, featuring Press Editor Mike Patrick and myself. Ah, I came out a bit on the short end of the critiques, as you might imagine. ‘Tis nice to know that I still live large in the alleged minds of the OpenCDA.com denizens. OpenCDA.com link here.
DFO: BTW, you’ll notice that Gookin hopped onto the thread above by saying he doesn’t expect to have “Coffee with the Mayor” until “we get a Mayor who represents the entire town, not just her own personality cult.”
Question: Have you seen this months’ “Coffee with the Mayor” program, featuring Mike Patrick and me? What did you think?