July 25, 1995 in City

Maybe There Is A Free Lunch

By The Spokesman-Review
 

Who says there’s no such thing as a free lunch? If allegations are true, Mayor Paul Korman of Spirit Lake, Idaho, helped himself to a lot of free lunches during his last seven months in office - about $1,600 worth on the city’s tab. Or enough to buy a Big Mac for every man, woman and child in his small town. Korman reportedly had a fondness for the barbecued pork and chicken at the Blanchard Inn Steakhouse & BBQ (giving new meaning to the term “pork-barrel politics.”) In announcing his resignation for health reasons, Korman told the monthly Spirit Lake Journal: “Serving as mayor was a very rewarding experience.” So it seems.

Stop! In the name of common sense

It’s hard to say which side was goofier at the Aryan Nations’ annual wiener roast and cross burning - the goose-steppers or the made-for-TV taunters who danced to golden oldies such as “Stop! In the Name of Love.” But I do know who was more dangerous. The Rev. Richard Butler’s compound has spawned an alumni list that includes bombers, murderers, bank robbers and counterfeiters. Dumb and Dumber faced off Friday at the entrance to the Aryan Nations compound north of Hayden Lake, Idaho. Michael Moore of the Fox network’s “TV Nation” thought it’d be good fun to expose the neo-Nutsies to a little ZOG multiculture. So, Fox hired the Class Act dance troupe of Spokane to high-step to the old Supremes number, prompting 20 supremacists, across the fence, to seethe, stiff-arm and spit. Fortunately, no one got hurt. Next time Moore wants cheap thrills, though, he should try lighting a match in a dynamite shed.

Convenience store clerks would swap checks gladly

Magistrate Gene Marano of Kootenai County has been a legal beagle so long that he’s forgotten how the little people live. Marano probably is right that attorneys in the Kootenai County public defender’s office are overworked and underpaid. (And matters are going to get worse in the next few months when three of the seven public defenders leave.) But Marano was dead wrong when he said: “For the number of hours they put in, they’re poorly paid. The clerk at the 7-Eleven is probably making more.” Actually, 7-Eleven clerks make much less than the minimum $29,182 salary, plus benefits, that a public defender earns. In Coeur d’Alene, 7-Eleven clerks earn from $4.75 to $5.50 hourly. In other words, they’d have to work at least 102 hours per week, 52 weeks a year - straight time - to match the salary of the greenest public defender. Maybe the good judge should spend a night selling gas and coffee at a convenience store to learn how the other half lives.

, DataTimes MEMO: Interactive Editor Doug Floyd and “Bagpipes” are on vacation. “Hot Potatoes” is a regular feature of the Tuesday and Thursday Opinion pages in the Idaho edition of The Spokesman-Review.

Interactive Editor Doug Floyd and “Bagpipes” are on vacation. “Hot Potatoes” is a regular feature of the Tuesday and Thursday Opinion pages in the Idaho edition of The Spokesman-Review.


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