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May 22, 2008

Vol 6 • No 19

Down by the river

With all the focus on the big name music talent, it’s easy to forget that Riverfest isn’t a music festival.

Market Row

Artists and merchants.

Market Row

Artists and merchants.

Election cleanup

In the clear light of dawn, anything new to observe among you? It's on to fall.

Fightin' side of me UPDATE

But there's nothing to fight but disappointment. Illness has forced cancellation of Merle Haggard's appearance Friday at Riverfest.

Walton Charter School Inc. acquisition

Now the University of Arkansas has company in the Walton-financed effort to reshape public education in Arkansas to the billionaires' liking.

The unfriendly skies

American Airlines, responding to high fuel costs, etc., is going to retire planes, cut flights and institute a $15 baggage charge on passengers flying on reduced-price tickets who don't have sufficient status in the airline's frequent flier program.

On second thought ...

.... Now  John McCain thinks it was "probably" a mistake to run down to San Antonio (following Mike Huckabee's footsteps) to kiss the rear of Catholic-trashing, Hitler-apologizing, dominion evangeliziing John Hagee.

'Huck shoots own foot'

Brummett tomorrow replays The Huckster's Obama assassination joke, his propensity for juvenile, crude and stupid remarks and what it might mean to his chances to be vice president.

Editorial cartoon, May 22

When is Pizza not Pizza?

Beware when you lunch at U.S. Pizza Co. Salad Express, the local chain’s newest outlet at Louisiana between Fourth and Capitol.

A & E news, May 22

Here’s a list of the award winners from last weekend’s second annual Little Rock Film Festival:

The Observer, May 22

At a local liquor store last week …

Little Rock Film Festival recap

I didn’t get to experience as much of the second annual Little Rock Film Festival as I would have liked, but I’m sure nobody else did either.

Falsification

In these pages last week, a letter-writer delivered herself against the “false amusement” of a state lottery.

Smart Talk, May 22

Steal a cigarette out of someone’s truck, it can cost you.

Invisible extremists

“Rather than just reporting relatively meaningless statements, ABC could have done voters a favor by reporting just how the Republicans planned to help the economy."

Orval, May 22

There they go again

Well, once again the right wing do-gooders have appointed themselves guardians of the American Way of Life Without Regard To Consequences.

Bush’s loser lap

After the debacle of President Bush’s Middle East junket, just as a matter of national security the country should consider barring reviled lame-duck leaders from taking loser laps to regions of the world they have degraded.

Words, May 22

It’s not always fare weather: “A building Jones owns next door, which he was renting to a certified public accountant and Dresden Home Health Care, faired much worse and will need to be completely rebuilt, he said.”

Little Rock Film Festival recap

I didn’t get to experience as much of the second annual Little Rock Film Festival as I would have liked, but I’m sure nobody else did either.

To-do list, May 22

Arkansas Flyer, Bang Camaro, Damn Bullets, Riverboat Crime, Arkansas Delta Family Gospel Festival, Patrick Sweany, Cross Canadian Ragweed and Claire Holley are scheduled this week.

‘War Eagle, Arkansas’ deserves the hype

It did the heart good to see the massive turnout for “War Eagle, Arkansas,” the premier film for this year’s Little Rock Film Festival.

Huck’s bad lib

At a National Rifle Association meeting last week, former Gov. Mike Huckabee was speaking when there was a sudden crash.

The WTF gig of the year

After releasing a career-defining album that gets you called “a voice of a generation,” wins you Grammys and further solidifies your position as one of the world’s biggest bands, what next?

Political wives and me

My biggest personal conflicts haven’t been with male politicians I’ve trashed, but with wives of male politicians I’ve trashed.

This modern world, May 22

Less than public

The Pulaski County circuit clerk’s website is “Proud to Announce,” the handout at the courthouse proclaims, “online court records.”

In brief, May 22

The Arkansas Chamber Singers present “Song of Spring” at the Governor’s Mansion, 7 p.m., $60.

Bag man

Eagle-eyed travelers who thought they saw a familiar face at the Little Rock National Airport baggage screening checkpoint were right: that is Mike Huckabee’s long-time press spokesman and brother-in-law Jim Harris riffling through your underwear and chec

Skip the personalized plaque

If you’ve got a new graduate in your life, please, for the love of all that is space-conserving, practical and dustcatcher-hating, avoid the temptation to buy them anything that has no purpose other than to hang on a wall or sit on a shelf.

What's Cooking, May 22

Starving Artist Cafe, where you can watch people paint while you eat, will quit its Seventh Street location at the end of July to prepare for its Aug. 15 opening in a new garret at 411 Main St. in North Little Rock.

Cee Knowledge

There hasn’t been an impressive history of attendance at national act headlining hip-hop shows in Little Rock.

May 15-20, 2008

It was a good week for … GOV. MIKE BEEBE. He succinctly but clearly and persuasively expressed reasons to oppose the initiative petition seeking to stop state help for aliens.

Good news and bad news from the diamond

So the Diamond Hogs got bounced out of the SEC tourney by the worst team in the conference.

Arkansas Music Video Competition Showcase

I missed the reception and screening of the videos and the awards ceremony.

Bridging Riverfest

Concert-hopping from Little Rock to North Little Rock might be easier this year, thanks to the Junction Bridge, the former railroad span that opened last Saturday as a pedestrian bridge.

Fast facts

Hours: 6-11 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturday; noon-10 p.m. Sunday.

Riverfest food vendors

West end (near Triple S Alarm Stage and Teen Extreme): W & M Concessions, C & D Concessions, Chuck’s Bar-B-Q, Flossie’s Funnel Cakes, Yarnell’s Ice Cream, Kathy’s Kabana, Walker’s Way.

Riverfest goes local

From the beginning, Riverfest has always had a local flavor.

Riverfest schedule

Days, times and acts by stage.

What McFadden's worth

Harry King has an interesting column today on the big money picked up by top NFL draft picks.

The better candidate

The Democratic presidential primary grinds on, with some indication here that Florida and Michigan voters won't be left on the trash heap.

Tim Griffin redux UPDATE

He's baaaaack. Tim Griffin, the Bush administration hit man who was scheduled to wield a political cudgel in the U.S. attorney's office in Little Rock until U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor and others stood up, may be headed back to work doing what he does best -- sliming Democrats.

Bifurcated primaries

Can we agree -- except for Sen. Tracy Steele, who doggedly defended his bad idea to move the presidential primary in the D-G this morning -- that splitting the Arkansas primary was a disaster?

Bifurcated primaries

Can we agree -- except for Sen. Tracy Steele, who doggedly defended his bad idea to move the presidential primary in the D-G this morning -- that splitting the Arkansas primary was a disaster?

Political satire

Good music for a good cause. That's the come-on for the fund-raiser for Planned Parenthood of Arkansas and Eastern Oklahoma.

Thursday To-Do: Arkansas Flyer

David B. Treadway ARKANSAS FLYER7:30 p.m., UALR Center for Performing Arts, University Theater.

Walton Arts Center moving?

The Iconoclast figures the Walton Arts Center isn't long for Fayetteville and will be relocated to Bentonville.

Welcome to the blog family

Today we welcome a new community blogger, Ashley McKelvy. She introduces herself today in her first entry on A Chick Called Mick: Adventures and obsessions of the woman with the funny name.

Polygamists win

A Texas court says the state didn't have sufficient grounds to remove children from the Mormon compound.

Thursday Hodge Podge

• Forward Michael Sanchez, who redshirted last season and will be a freshman this fall, is starting and playing pretty solid ball for a team of college players that is touring China.

Republicans appoint

The Arkansas Republican Party has named Deena Burnett Bailey to the state Board of Election Commissioners. She is the widow of Tom Burnett, who was killed on the 9/11 flight of United 93 and has since remarried.

Punishing the kids

I hear that University of Arkansas and University of Central Arkansas officials are scrambling in response to an AP story that notes, as we've reported before, that several campuses extend in-state tuition and campus scholarships to Arkansas high school graduates who might not be authorized immigrants.

Equal time for the senator

Earlier today, I mentioned Sen. Tracy Steele's legislation that gave Arkansas an early presidential primary.

Rejection time for Hitler

John Hagee's endorsement of Hitler was finally too much for his pal John McCain. Now, weeks too late, he rejects the evangelist's endorsement.

Huck regrets McCain invite

Says here that The Huckster was invited out to Arizona this weekend for John McCain's soiree (seen by some as a vice presidential cattle show), but regretted so that he could spend some 34th anniversary time with Mrs. Huckabee.

Talking trash

Ninety-nine bottles of beer in the trash is nothing.

Down by the river

We've got everything you need to know for Riverfest weekend. A complete schedule, fast facts, info on food vendors, the lowdown on what the opening of the Junction Bridge means for the festival, a story about this year's infusion of local talent and, below, a survey of all of the festival headliners.

Down by the river

We've got everything you need to know for Riverfest weekend. A complete schedule, fast facts, info on food vendors, the lowdown on what the opening of the Junction Bridge means for the festival, a story about this year's infusion of local talent and, below, a survey of all of the festival headliners.

Clickit

In keeping with its editor's policy, seat belt usage was not mentioned in this morning's Democrat-Gazette article about the devastating Florida wreck in which two of seven Conway people on vacation were killed and others were critically injured.

Immigrant watch UPDATE

Gov. Mike Beebe is not going to get left on the immigrant issue. After the Associated Press noted yesterday that there conceivably could be new damaging impact from the proposed anti-immigrant initiative -- a constitutional prohibition that could apply to unauthorized kids attending Arkansas colleges at in-state tuition -- he called in the new director of the Department of Higher Education and told him to crack the whip.

Immigrant watch UPDATE

Gov. Mike Beebe is not going to get left on the immigrant issue. After the Associated Press noted yesterday that there conceivably could be new damaging impact from the proposed anti-immigrant initiative -- a constitutional prohibition that could apply to unauthorized kids attending Arkansas colleges at in-state tuition -- he called in the new director of the Department of Higher Education and told him to crack the whip.

The third Clinton

News headline: In an interview with People magazine, Bill Clinton does not rule out possibility that Chelsea Clinton might run for president some day.

Screw the homeless UPDATE

Argenta News gets it right. North Little Rock was perfectly willing to provide support for a temporary place for homeless people to gather during the day and get food and medical services -- JUST SO LONG AS IT WAS IN LITTLE ROCK.

Ask the Blog

When we can, we try to oblige readers who come seeking answers to questions: Q: I somehow missed a couple of election results -- 1) the North Little Rock perv trying to get back in the state ledge and 2) the dead county judge down in South Arkansas, Chicot County as I recall.

Don't pee off your porch in Prairie Grove

Whatever would we do without The Iconoclast? Today's bonbon: A report on the sad case of Vernon Holland, 69, of Summers, sentenced by Judge William Storey to six months in the county jail and fined $1,000 for indecent exposure.

Don't pee off your porch in Prairie Grove

Whatever would we do without The Iconoclast? Today's bonbon: A report on the sad case of Vernon Holland, 69, of Summers, sentenced by Judge William Storey to six months in the county jail and fined $1,000 for indecent exposure.

Is the end in sight?

So far, it's just an anonymously sourced report on CNN, but it should produce quite a din before the day is out.

McCain's pastor II UPDATE

John McCain has jettisoned the vile John Hagee. But what about Rod Parsley?

McCain's pastor II UPDATE

John McCain has jettisoned the vile John Hagee. But what about Rod Parsley?

Friday To-Do: Damn Bullets

DAMN BULLETS9:30 p.m., White Water Tavern. $5.

Friday To-Do: Bang Camaro

BANG CAMARO10 p.m., Revolution. $5-$10.

Lightning death

Little Rock police say Wendell Darnell Piggee Jr., 27, was struck by lightning and killed about 9 p.m. last night at 1818 South Jackson St. A juvenile standing in the yard with Piggee was injured and being treated at Children's Hospital..

Conway recount UPDATE

Tipster says Linda Tyler won the recount for the hard-fought Democratic primary race in Conway for state House District 45.

Conway recount UPDATE

Tipster says Linda Tyler won the recount for the hard-fought Democratic primary race in Conway for state House District 45.

Pitiful turnout

It's official. The primary vote turnout, as a percentage of registered voters, was the lowest on record, says Secretary of State Charlie Daniels.

Pitiful turnout

It's official. The primary vote turnout, as a percentage of registered voters, was the lowest on record, says Secretary of State Charlie Daniels.

Talking heads -- elections

David Sanders' Unconventional Wisdom on AETN at 6:30 p.m. tonight -- and again noon Sunday -- will feature a discussion on the chances of a Democratic tsunami in the fall congressional elections.

Riverfest: Navigating Day 1

607 with Bobby in the shadows. At least its not scorching hot.

Want to talk?

You're on. And, since this is surely to come up, the videos:

Want to talk?

You're on. And, since this is surely to come up, the videos:

Checking in on Marcus Monk

It's no secret that we're Marcus Monk fans here at Razorback Expats, and our entire staff is rooting for him to carve out a decent NFL career after what he gave up to return to Arkansas for his senior year.

Opening day: Riverfest

-- Brian Chilson photo

Good for Elliott

Joyce Elliott, newly elected to the state Senate, says she may try again on legislation she pushed as a House member to legalize college help to Arkansas high school graduates who are not authorized immigrants.

Political realignment in NWA?

Brummett considers the question on account of several election outcomes and concludes that they should be judged individually. Some Democrats saw in the Courtney Henry judicial victory and converted Democrat Tim Summers' House win as hopeful signs for Democrats. I'm reminded that these are precisely the factors that a leading Republican saw as hopeful because they signaled a fracturing of Religious Right hegemony in NWA.

Huey Lewis at Riverfest

-- Photo by Brian Chilson

The 'new' Democratic Party

With it becoming increasingly likely that Hillary Clinton will be able to claim a popular vote edge once the primary season is over -- insert shriek here, Obamamiacs, but the Philadelphia Inquirer article in D-G this morning explains -- you begin to understand the mad frenzy to push her out of the race before that happens.

The 'new' Democratic Party

With it becoming increasingly likely that Hillary Clinton will be able to claim a popular vote edge once the primary season is over -- insert shriek here, Obamamiacs, but the Philadelphia Inquirer article in D-G this morning explains -- you begin to understand the mad frenzy to push her out of the race before that happens.

Quotable

Re: Hillary Clinton's reference yesterday to the fact that RFK was campaigning in June when he was killed:

Quotable

Re: Hillary Clinton's reference yesterday to the fact that RFK was campaigning in June when he was killed:

At the pump

Too low on fuel to shop around, I pulled into the closest gas station this morning and was greeted by $4.25/gallon premium.

At the pump

Too low on fuel to shop around, I pulled into the closest gas station this morning and was greeted by $4.25/gallon premium.

Riverfest: Teeming

Paul Thorn. Photo by Brian Chilson.

Anyone notice...

...just below the fold in today's Dem-Gaz Arkansas section, the picture of Waylon's son, Shooter Jennings, rared back, hollering?

Saturday, in the park

-- Photo by Brian Chilson A shower dampened the afternoon crowd at Riverfest a bit, but not the spirits of kids playing in the new fountain that is part of the new kids' play area in Riverfront Park.

Voting machine blues

The Log Cabin Democrat account of the recount of votes in the tight House race in Conway should at least mildly alarm everyone who cares about election accountability.

Late but ...

Miranda Lambert at Riverfest

-- Photo by Brian Chilson

Why Hillary still runs

She explains in an op-ed for the NY Daily News.

Kansas City, Mexico

John Brummett tries for a followup with Jeannie Burlsworth, leader of the anti-immigrant initiative drive, who revealed more than a touch of paranoia in a revealing interview with the Democrat-Gazette's Seth Blomeley last week.

Tax dollars at work

The Pine Bluff Commercial has a fine expose this morning. The city has poured $500,000 the last 10 years into an agency expected to build low-income housing.

Maynard G. Krebs special UPDATE

Thanks to Mark for a link to KAIT-TV's film of the controlled demolition of the twin towers dormitories at Arkansas State.

Maynard G. Krebs special UPDATE

Thanks to Mark for a link to KAIT-TV's film of the controlled demolition of the twin towers dormitories at Arkansas State.

Electing judges

Did you know that the U.S. is nearly alone in the world in electing most of its judges?

Memorial Day observances

Tradiitional observances will be held in Little Rock on Monday, Memorial Day, but the locations have been changed to the Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery.

Open line

Your turn.

Huckabee: Couldabeen nominee

In extensive interview in Seattle today, MIke Huckabee said he would have won the Republican nomination for president if the GOP played by Democratic Party rules. Read all about it

Flex-time to cushion gas prices

Stephens Media dips into the idea of putting state employees on four 10-hour workdays to cushion the cost of driving to work.

Flex-time to cushion gas prices

Stephens Media dips into the idea of putting state employees on four 10-hour workdays to cushion the cost of driving to work.

Tribute to Teddy

John Brummett lauds Sen. Edward Kennedy. Glad to see it.

Riverfest finale

Fireworks and ZZ Top and no rain. -- Photos by Brian Chilson  

Happily never after - UPDATE

Any Pope County readers have a clue why a guy went postal and shot up an outdoor wedding near Russellville Saturday?

Happily never after - UPDATE

Any Pope County readers have a clue why a guy went postal and shot up an outdoor wedding near Russellville Saturday?

To unite the Democrats

Paul Krugman offers some ideas: (The "trumped-up scandal" is the uproar over her RFK reference.) So what should Mr. Obama and his supporters do?

Today's assignment

This one is much easier with the print version and an easy chair, but Claude B. suggests a homework assignment for Arkansas Blog readers: George Packer's recent article in The New Yorker suggesting that the Republican Era, thanks to a shortage of ideas, may be over.

Dogtown likes dollars, not homeless

If you're homeless, NLR Mayor Pat Hays has no use for you. Thus, he has thrown up all kinds of procedural problems to a Christian ministry that would like to provide day services to street people in his fair city.

Dogtown likes dollars, not homeless

If you're homeless, NLR Mayor Pat Hays has no use for you. Thus, he has thrown up all kinds of procedural problems to a Christian ministry that would like to provide day services to street people in his fair city.

Huck: Different rules and 'I would have won'

He insists he's not seeking the vice presidency, he tells a Huffington Poster. UPDATE: But it appears he believes deep in his heart that he's No. 1. In a lengthy interview in Seattle, The Huckster says he'd have won the Republican nomination if Republicans played by the same rules that Democrats play by.

Gumbo project

Don't know why, but I've had gumbo on my mind. So, with a day off, I'm at work on it.

Memorial Day, LA-style

I may leave it with you the rest of the day. Given some free time, I"m cooking today -- shrimp, crab and andouille gumbo. So far just the prep work is on Eat Arkansas.

Memorial Day, LA-style

I may leave it with you the rest of the day. Given some free time, I"m cooking today -- shrimp, crab and andouille gumbo. So far just the prep work is on Eat Arkansas.

VIP viewing

KATV tonight noted -- and credited with an on-screen graphic -- the widespread unhappiness, represented by readers of the Arkansas Blog, about the fact that Pulaski County closed off the newly opened Junction Bridge to the public so that a select group of nabobs could view the Riverfest-closing fireworks from the new pedestrian span.

Stolen elections

Have 16 minutes? Check it out.

Barroom blues

Mark this one down. If seeing someone in the small club who's destined for the big club tickles your fancy, if you've been craving a full-throated belter, if you like your guitar virtuosity to hypnotize, if a raw helping of blues/rock/soul sounds about ri

Define sexism

It is not, Brummett says, comparing Hillary Clinton with the character in "Fatal Attraction." There's no sexism, he argues, in calling a candidate monstrous.

Immigrant watch

Gov. Mike Beebe. State benefits for immigrants.

Hamburger tax blues

The Iconoclast's report on the Fayetteville Advertising and Promotion Commission will sound somewhat familiar. The Commission isn't doing a good job of collecting the burger tax from all required to pay.

Wedding bell blues UPDATE

Fox 16 is still following the story of the weekend -- the shootup of a Piney Creek-side wedding near Dover that left the bride and groom in critical condition and two others wounded.

Coulda, woulda, shoulda

Politico's Jonathan Martin picks up on Mike Huckabee's assertion that he could have won the Republican nomination under Democratic rules -- he notes it's the flipside of Hillary's argument that Republican rules would have been more favorable to her.

Riverfest round-up

ZZ Top. Photo by Brian Chilson.

A Blog Named A Boy Named Sooie

Plug. Derek Jenkins, our resident sports columnist, has a Times blog going.

Tuesday To-Do: Cross Canadian Ragweed

CROSS CANADIAN RAGWEED8:30 p.m., Sticky Fingerz. $20.Cross Canadian Ragweed played Sticky Fingerz way before they were Universal recording artists and country chart-toppers.

Tuesday To-Do: Patrick Sweany

  Above, Sweany shills for Dean Guitars and talks playing finger-style and hollow-body guitars.

Locks of Love

-- Arkansas Senate photo State Sen. Randy Laverty of Jasper gets more than a light trim Tuesday from Lorrie Brubaker in the Capitol barbershop.

Out today: Al Green, the Good Fear, Isaac Alexander and Jason Morphew

  Aging soul superstars are obligated to start referring to themselves in the third person once they hit 50.Al Green's "Lay It Down" is soooooo good.

Society gossip

For those of you who like that sort of thing, the New York Social Diary remembers Bobo Rockefeller, whose last quiet years in Little Rock were a marked contrast to her younger days.

Society gossip

For those of you who like that sort of thing, the New York Social Diary remembers Bobo Rockefeller, whose last quiet years in Little Rock were a marked contrast to her younger days.

Capitol real estate

-- Brian Chilson photo The former Dillard's headquarters building at 900 W. Capitol Avenue has been sold for $800,000 to a partnership headed by a couple of Dallas developers, Ed Massman and Charles Edwards.

Change is gonna come ...

... to the Clinton Library.

Another Bush aide turns

Now it's Scott McClellan, former press spokesman, who says the Bush administration ran on propaganda, the "liberal" media did a sorry job and, well, you know. You will be shocked to learn that Dick Cheney and Scooter Libby are liars.

Claire Holley, tonight

No Depression poster girl Claire Holley grew up in Mississippi, but now lives in L.A. You can still hear her roots — a way of phrasing here, a lyric there — but there's not really any twang left in her music. She has a startlingly affecting voice, fragile

Words, May 29

Isabel Macdonald writes in Extra! Magazine on waterboarding:

Bodied

The Mid-America Science Museum, in Hot Springs, will host "Our Body: The Universe Within" from June 14-Sept. 28.

Half a loaf

Democratic Party lawyers say only half the delegations from Florida and Michigan can be seated at the nominating convention.

Kids' health care lacking

A study out today ranks the states in 13 categories on health care for children.

George Lucas, ruiner of movie franchises?

Back by unpopular demand, the Arkansas movie club. David Koon: You know, for the past couple of days, I've been sort of steeling myself up.

Plug

An early bit from David Koon's media column this week:You know, we’ve always said that if there’s one thing missing from Fayetteville (other than black people), it’s a really great alternative weekly newspaper.

Shopping patterns

A news release from McCain Mall managers announces several new stores -- Aeropostal, Justice just for girls, Kay Jewelers, Whitehall Jewelers and First Wok.

Sure, We Charge You More . . .

to check your luggage, but we make up for it by losing your stuff more often.Visit this Expedia.com site to see the policies on your favorite airline regarding fees for checking a bag.

Shhhhh!!!

I promised my former drama teacher and current friend, Kim, that I would start watching more old movies. What I meant was: I’ll watch a half-dozen or so, and if I just can’t get into them, I’ll watch, like, two a year. Kim has good taste, though, and out of the list she gave me, I liked all but one. I hated Bringing Up Baby, and as I watched Cary Grant fall for Katherine Hepburn, I yelled: “Get away from her! She’s totally crazy!” He ignored me, of course, and at the end of the film, after she wrecked a dinosaur skeleton he spent years assembling, the couple end up in an embrace. He couldn’t help but love her; personally, I would have stayed single.
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