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Saturday, December 7, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Shawn Vestal: Mitchell and Jessen, with waterboards and PowerPoints, stand at center of new film

Film about post-9/11 torture program paints Spokane psychologists James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen as the bad guys.

Shawn Vestal: The political shift in the Valley isn’t quite the left turn the far right thinks it is

If you’re still wondering how a lawmaker who pals around with people who fantasize about “skull-stomping” commies online continues to be re-elected, and whether that trend will continue, consider a …

UPDATED: Tue., Dec. 3, 2019

Rob Curley: Open hearts, wallets – it’s our kind of day

So many days in a row with nicknames: Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Robbi’s Tired Sunday and Cyber Monday. Then there’s today: Giving Tuesday. It might be the one that …

Rob Curley: Finding inspiration in vibrant, dedicated newsroom

The world is filled with constant change and consistent chaos, so there are times when you can’t help but feel thankful for tradition. Something reliable. And with substance.

Shawn Vestal: New red-flag gun laws are being used to prevent violence

Twelve extreme risk protection orders have been issued by Spokane courts since a new law took effect that allows courts to temporarily remove guns from people who are threatening themselves …

Sue Lani Madsen: How to make housing unaffordable

Now that the election is over, a Tenants Bill of Rights ordinance is moving forward. Rapidly. What is on the table works against keeping housing affordable or increasing the supply.

Rob Curley: What does a woman who plays a Disney princess several times a week think about ‘Frozen II’?

Most people know Ashlee Karras as Miss Spokane. She’s the crowned ambassador for our city. She’s so good at it that she’s won numerous pageants and even been named Miss …

Shawn Vestal: Joy, service and food for the hungry on hand at Shalom Ministries for 25 years

On Saturday night, Shalom Ministries will host its annual holiday concert and auction to help raise money. If you’re without plans, you could do worse than buy a ticket to …

UPDATED: Thu., Nov. 21, 2019

Rob Curley: What do Jack Skellington, the Salvation Army and the Spokane Symphony have in common?

Trying to figure out how to top last year’s bell-ringing bash and bazaar has been on my mind for a while. Then, while walking past the Fox Theater and seeing …

Spin Control: Time for filing election challenges and grousing about ignoring ‘will of the voters’

It’s that time of the year for filing election challenges and complaining about those challengers ignoring the will of the people.

Shawn Vestal: Rep. Matt Shea saw ex-WSU GOPer James Allsup not as a bigot but as an ally

James Allsup would be a natural fit on Matt Shea’s team – that circle of loose screws, online tough guys, racist ignoramuses, Islamaphobes and homophobes, violent fantasists, Trump cultists and …

Rob Curley: Kindred spirits of community kindness and a transformational kitchen

Christ Kitchen teaches practical job skills to women in poverty. One of the job programs it’s been working for a couple of years to fund aims to teach these women …

Sue Lani Madsen: Buyer beware, some health insurance isn’t as portable as it may seem

Portability of care is critical for students, independent contract workers and migrating retirees. Instead of being trapped in a job, people are trapped in a zip code.

Shawn Vestal: Beggs will play crucial role after supposed change election idles

After all that time, all that argument and all that Realtor money, the landscape at City Hall will be strikingly similar to the one we’ve had for eight years. Given …

Huckleberries: Library vigilante strikes again, attracts international media attention

Someone is protesting what she or he believes to be a library bias against Trump and conservatives by hiding books critical of them.

Shawn Vestal: Spokane should be proud of program that combats family homelessness

More than 100 families, and nearly 300 children, were either placed in housing or stabilized and prevented from becoming homeless as part of the program. Of those, 95 percent remain …

Faith and Values: Don’t just cope with disillusionment, learn from it

I have dreams for our community to become stronger, to move forward. To do that we need to push through the smog — the discouragement — and find the other, …

Spin Control: Tax votes aren’t an automatic no, this election showed

An article of faith among certain political “experts” says voters, given the chance, will always vote against taxes. But voters don’t automatically do so.

UPDATED: Wed., Nov. 6, 2019

Shawn Vestal: Stuckart explains decision to quickly concede mayor’s race as observers left stunned

“I’ve had people asking me, ‘Why did you concede?’ ” Stuckart said. “Because it’s mathematically impossible for me to win. Barring a miracle, I lost.” Still, the decision took a …

Faith and Values: A mind at rest is a mind surrendered to God

Rather than encouraging laziness, each approaching Sabbath urged God’s people to work efficiently, knowing a day without work was coming.

Spin Control: Play it again, Congress: As daylight time goes by

Time has come today, as the Chambers Brothers would say. But it’s not daylight saving time.

UPDATED: Sat., Nov. 2, 2019

Sue Lani Madsen: People become homeless when they ‘run out of relationships,’ not resources

Poor people with family ties and support systems, even addicts who manage to maintain relationships, do not become homeless.

UPDATED: Fri., Nov. 1, 2019

Shawn Vestal: Initial internal reviews, watchdog assessment raise serious concerns about exoneration in K-9 arrest

Chief Craig Meidl and Capt. Tom Hendren said they believed that the context of the arrest led them to conclude the use of force was appropriate. They did not mention …

Shawn Vestal: Use of K-9, incendiary threats in arrest show the need for outside oversight of Spokane police

This moment is precisely why the ombudsman’s office exists. The police department has essentially signed off on everything in the video but Lesser’s demeanor. But we’ve got to have more …

Shawn Vestal: Plaza project helps erase the boundary between river and city

The plaza and these other riverfront projects are part of a thoroughgoing revitalization of the relationship between the city center and the Spokane River.

Spin Control: Date-of-birth records are public, divided court says

In a close call, state Supreme Court rules government employees’ dates of birth are public records.

Shawn Vestal: Recent income growth in Spokane outpaces state, nation

Income in Spokane over the past five years has grown remarkably overall – more than the rest of the county, the rest of the state and the rest of the …

Sue Lani Madsen: Change is hard, communication harder in emergency management divorce

The sheriff is livid. The fire chief feels misunderstood. The deputy director of emergency management is exasperated. What we have here is a failure to communicate, ignored until an election …

UPDATED: Wed., Oct. 23, 2019

Front Porch: All aboard the Scenic Pend Oreille River Train

Thankfully, we’d been warned in advance that train robberies frequently occur on the Scenic Pend Oreille River Train. Even better, the cash collected goes to support the many community projects …

UPDATED: Tue., Oct. 22, 2019

Shawn Vestal: The jokes were great, General Mattis, but let’s get serious

Gen. Jim Mattis is speaking in Spokane on Thursday night. The appearance by the former Secretary of Defense comes in the wake of a growing chorus of observers calling upon …