← Back to issues

December 11, 2008

Vol 6 • No 48

Mutts like us

Should "biracial" go the way of "mulatto"?

Working on the budget

Little Rock School District principals were asked for suggestions on budget cuts to cope with the district's expected $10 million shortfall.

Open line

Comments taken if you can.

From ‘octoroon’ to ‘other’

Lucky for Barack Obama that he was not born in Arkansas.

About race

As a resident of this area for over 5 years, an active political junkie, former history teacher, and survivor of Grif Stockley’s law course, I am again perplexed at how this man’s inane ramblings, misunderstandings, and small-town gossip column style of w

Westside killer seeks handgun permit

An application for a concealed handgun permit filed by one of the shooters in 1998’s Westside Middle School massacre in Jonesboro has been denied by the Arkansas State Police, citing the objections of the Sharp County sheriff and at least one answer on th

Words, Dec. 11

“Oklahoma will do its best to make [its] case amid Bedlam … This year’s Bedlam rivalry game finds the Sooners facing what figures to be an even greater challenge than in 2001.”

Digital TV countdown

John Lennon once said, “It’s fear of the unknown. The unknown is what it is. And to be frightened of it is what sends everybody scurrying around chasing dreams, illusions, wars, peace, love, hate, all that.”

Tale of two cities

It’s the best of times in North Little Rock, the worst in Little Rock. Consider:

Raising a hot glass

It’s a long road from the Bluebird of Happiness to art glass, but Gary Carter traveled it as an artist at Terra Studios up in the Arkansas Ozarks.

W.: As bad as Hoover?

With six weeks to go before his exit and a longer period after that needed for reflection, it is too early to settle the big academic question of our time: Was George W. Bush as bad as Herbert Hoover?

About race

As a resident of this area for over 5 years, an active political junkie, former history teacher, and survivor of Grif Stockley’s law course, I am again perplexed at how this man’s inane ramblings, misunderstandings, and small-town gossip column style of w

This modern world, Dec. 11

Doing the Little Rock hula

It’s been a tough year all over and it’s getting tougher. And it’s been an uncommonly mean one in Little Rock.

No parking

Choosing between a park and a parking lot should be easy.

Editorial cartoon, Dec. 11

In brief, Dec. 11

Fresh off a European tour, Nashville pop-punks Autovaughn headline at On the Rocks’ regular night of live music, with Atlanta rockers Elevation in tow, 9:30 p.m., $5.

The season of hope

There’s something a tad unseemly in how fascinated we are by the way John Pelphrey cracks the whip.

‘History Boys’

Set in a London boy’s school in the 1980s, “History Boys” is about eight grammar school (what would be called high school in the U.S.) whose sights are set on getting into the most difficult of English universities, Oxford and Cambridge.

From ‘octoroon’ to ‘other’

Lucky for Barack Obama that he was not born in Arkansas.

The observer, Dec. 11

Heavy metal music for Christmas. That’s the ticket. Or it was for this Observer.

Played again

“Cadillac Records,” the story of the revolutionary Chicago record label Chess, begins in 1941, with Muddy Waters (Jeffrey Wright) squinting in a cotton field in a Mississippi sun.

To-do list, Dec. 11

UALR Percussion Band Ensemble, Joe Buck, Arkansas Chamber Singers, Reverend Horton Heat, Dub Trio, All Night Drug Prowling Wolves and Hana Pestle with Ben Moody should provide various fun-seeking options this week.

What's Cooking, Dec. 11

Brian Deloney, who’s served as the executive sous chef at the Capital Hotel for the last two years, plans to open a casual Southern cuisine restaurant early in 2009.

Acting on Act 1

It looks like the ACLU of Arkansas will file a lawsuit challenging Act 1, the new law that prohibits cohabiting adults from adopting or fostering children.

Stanton Moore Trio

Although the Stanton Moore Trio is named after a drummer who plays in numerous other projects and has his own signature series of cymbals, sticks and a prototypical snare nearing the production line, the operative word in the band’s title is “trio.”

Dec. 3-9, 2008

It was a GOOD week for … MARIANNA POLICE. The Delta town’s small force, including a one-man detective squad, got national publicity for its vital role in arresting a suspect in the slaying of TV anchor Anne Pressly. He’s also a suspect in a Marianna rape.

“It’s a Wonderful Life: A Radio Play”

The ambiance at opening night of the Rep’s “It’s a Wonderful Life” was, I think, exactly as director Bob Hupp intended.

Artist’s rebirth

A longer string of complimentary adjectives can be applied to Starving Artist Cafe than any other area eatery that immediately comes to mind.

Smart talk, Dec. 11

Rep. Bill Sample, R-Hot Springs, has finished the first draft of an immigration bill he hopes to introduce in the next legislative session.

All starting with I

I noticed a columnist for the local daily is concerned about restraints on the “legitimate press,” and I wondered what it is that makes the legitimate press legitimate.

Orval, Dec. 11

Just for kicks

Nothing says Christmas like the pitter-patter of little tap shoes on cold asphalt.

Thanks, but no thanks

The idea from a Republican freshman to have the full regular legislative session be in even-numbered years.

Who you calling grumpy?

What a week for state curmudgeon John Brummett. First, he extends the hand of fellowship to Kristin Fisher in the old v. new media showdown.

If we don't blow our own horn ...

Slow morning, so some self-referential items: 1) Thanks to AP, which hustled to match our exclusive on the Andrew Golden gun permit, but which noted that it wouldn't have been calling in the first place had we not broken the story.

Blithering hypocrites

It's rich to see the likes of Republlican Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama insist on more givebacks from U.S. automakers' workers before he'll agree to any government support for their continued survival.

Ready to build highways

I gave you a link yesterday to the U.S. mayors' list of projects ready to go if Barack Obama gets his job stimulus spending bill.

Wal-Mart fights a union

Another interesting tussle in Canada over workers' desire to unionize a Wal-Mart store. Secret ballot v. card check argument is at play there.

Fire on Kavanaugh

Reporter Al Leveritt reports that the Valley View Apartments, a small project just west of the Allsopp Park Promenade, is on fire.

Thursday To-Do: UALR Percussion Ensemble covers Radiohead

  UALR Percussion Ensemble "Kid A" UALR PERCUSSION BAND ENSEMBLE7:30 p.m., University Theatre, UALR.

Brother can you spare a job?

Jobless claims hit a 26-year high. Tell me why the polls last night showed 20 percent will be sorry to see Bush go?

Blog watching

David Kinkade over at The Arkansas Project (does he have a real job?) has stumbled on the test site for the long-promised new website of Stephens Media.

Blog watching

David Kinkade over at The Arkansas Project (does he have a real job?) has stumbled on the test site for the long-promised new website of Stephens Media.

Arkansas -- by the numbers

What'll they think of next? Lindsey Millar, who provides a welcome dose of the younger generation around here, directs me to this website, statestats, which purports to provide a state-by-state ranking of Google searches.

No-bid contracts OK

The state Supreme Court today upheld the state law that allows no-bid state construction work on projects costing more than $5 million.

No-bid contracts OK

The state Supreme Court today upheld the state law that allows no-bid state construction work on projects costing more than $5 million.

Wakarusa Festival to NWA in 2009

Dude, the colors are alive. Wakarusa, the five-year-old music and camping festival, will relocate from Lawrence, Kan. to Mulberry Mountain, near Ozark, in Northwest Arkansas, in 2009.

LRSD budget cutting

A recent item here about recommendations from LR school principals on budget cuts prompted a variety of reactions.

What if there were no newspapers?

Reports are multiplying that Gannett may "save" Detroit's daily newspapers by going to a plan that ends seven-day home delivery of a print edition.

Thursday: Autovaughn, River City Men's Chorus and more

Autovaughn. UPDATE: Late add at Juanita's, writes local man about town Jeremy Glover.

Adios AYPN UPDATE

Remember the Arkansas Young Professionals Network, a Little Rock group whose internal politics -- of the sexist Republican variety, judging by several e-mail -- got an unflattering airing here and elsewhere last year?

Enter the Musicians Showcase online

Enthusiasm. At last year's showcase.

Dirty Deeds: ADEQ Finally Stepping Up

Drilling fluids pooled at a land-application disposal facility near Carlisle.  The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality has issued an emergency order to Fayetteville Shale Land Farms, LLC, a drilling waste land-application site located about three miles west of Carlisle, citing numerous violations and ordering the company to stop accepting fluids for disposal.  ADEQ inspectors found oil in the "staging pond," or reserve pit, where drilling fluids are stored before being land-applied.  These fluids are supposed to be water-based and contain no oil.  The ADEQ permit prohibits the disposal of frac-water and other oil-based drilling fluids at these sites.  The walls around the pit were also insufficient, failing to meet the 24 inch requirement set forth by the permit.  Fluids were also over-applied to the land which resulted in pooling (as pictured above).  Probably most disturbing, inspectors found that drilling fluids had been applied within 100 feet of White Oak Branch, a stream that runs nearby.  Water samples taken from the creek show a significantly higher level of conductivity downstream than upstream.    These types of violations are not new.  Other land-application sites around the state have consistently violated state regulations.  This is the first one, that I know of, that has resulted in an emergency order calling on the owners to stop what they're doing.  How novel?  You break the rules, you don't get to play anymore.  You can read the order here. 

What part of illegal alien, etc.

Too good to be true, except it is: Every few weeks for nearly four years, the Secret Service screened the IDs of employees for a Maryland cleaning company before they entered the house of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, the nation's top immigration official.

Pollution crackdown

Better late than never. Gerard Matthews reports on his Shale Watch blog that the state Department of Environmental Quality has cracked down on a shale waste disposal operation near Carlisle.

County and State Govts. Institute Stiff Oil and Gas Regs.

While we're still struggling with how to deal with all the problems that are starting to pop up due to the Fayetteville Shale natural gas exploration, other state and even county governments aren't waiting around.  Santa Fe County in New Mexico recently passed an ordinance calling for the gas companies to pony-up for some of the unexpected costs that come with gas exploration, like roads and emergency medical services. 

Bank of America slashes

Bank of America is going to fire 35,000 people over three years. Plans not yet final, but "all units" to be affected.

Have things changed much?

Time Inc. Prints from Life magazine's photo archives are for sale on Google in a variety of formats.

Betty Rutherford dies at 110

Elizabeth Jenkins (Betty) Rutherford, reputed to be Arkansas's second oldest resident, died today in Batesville at 110.

Death sentence in Fayetteville

That's the punishment a jury in Fayetteville today gave Zachariah Marcyniuk for killing UA student Katie Wood in March.

Fresh air

You're on.

I’M DEERING OF A WHITE CHRISTMAS!

I wanted something different yet memorable this year for my cards. So I commissioned the fabulous John Deering for an original piece that I and all my friends (many of whom you’ve met at the Presidential Debates and Conventions) could cherish for a lifetime.

Westside killer seeks handgun permit

An application for a concealed handgun permit filed by one of the shooters in 1998’s Westside Middle School Massacre in Jonesboro has been denied by the Arkansas State Police, citing the objections of the Sharp County sheriff and at least one answer on th

Paying it forward at UCA

Another day, another report from the D-G's Debra Hale-Shelton on unusual financial practices at the University of Central Arkansas during the tenure of President Lu Hardin.

Whose side are you on UPDATED

An auto industry bailout bill failed in the Senate last night, with U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln joining the Republican minority that used filibuster to cudgel their case that the legislation is an opportunity to punish union workers of the U.S. manufacturers.

Whose side are you on UPDATED

An auto industry bailout bill failed in the Senate last night, with U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln joining the Republican minority that used filibuster to cudgel their case that the legislation is an opportunity to punish union workers of the U.S. manufacturers.

Cooling on coal

Dynergy, a major investor in a coal-fired power plant under construction near Osceola, is re-evaluating plans for future investments in that and other "greenfield" coal-burning plants.

No way to run a city

Mayor Mark Stodola wrested $600,000 out of the Little Rock Advertising and Promotion Commission yesterday to shore up the city's general operating account.

We bleed Hog red

Somebody shared with me a recent mailing from the Razorback Foundation to its contributors. It would appear to be something of a response to the uproar about the departure of former Hog Chuck Dicus as head of the UA Athletic Department fund-raising subsidiary and concerns about whether new Athletic Director Jeff Long's broom might be seen as having swept the athletic machinery clean of true-red Razorbacks.

Blago: Presumed innocent

Words worth remembering from Judge Wendell Griffen. (You may also presume Blago, at a minimum, a sleazebag.)

Friday To-Do: Arkansas Chamber Singers

ARKANSAS CHAMBER SINGERS7:30 p.m., St. Mark's Episcopal Church. $10-$15.On the eve of its 30th anniversary, the Arkansas Chamber Singers unveil a special commissioned piece.

Friday To-Do: Joe Buck

JOE BUCK10 p.m., White Water Tavern. $5.Every time the haunting visage of Joe Buck enters my fragile mind, I remember seeking fatherly advice on how to handle taunting playground commands such as “go to hell.” He said, “Son, tell 'em if you don't see 'em there, you'll know there's a worse place.” Perhaps the one-man hellbilly music machine Joe Buck would even agree with Dad on this one.

Re Blanche: An opponent?

Speaking of Blanche Lincoln: I was reminded by a reader that I'd been deficient, despite his long ago tip, in getting out ahead of other gossips with the news that outgoing Farm Bureau president Stanley Reed has a yen for elective office and U.S. Senate is on the Republican's radar.

Coming soon

Brian Deloney, who's served as the executive sous chef at the Capital Hotel for the last two years, plans to open a casual Southern cuisine restaurant early in 2009 in the space that previously housed Las Casitas del Valle, adjacent to the Faded Rose and Buffalo Grill on Rebsamen Park Road.Prior to the Capital, the Little Rock native spent a decade working in Emeril Lagasse's restaurant empire, first at Nola in New Orleans and then at the hugely popular Delmonico Steakhouse in Las Vegas.He says he plans to get crawfish and soft shell crab when available and offer all sorts of daily specials.

Franken gets a break

Critical meeting today in Minnesota where a canvassing board will decide whether rejected absentee ballots should be counted.

NLR: finagling in the dark

NLR Commodore Pat Hays on Monday announced a public hearing Dec. 22 on a proposal to, as the D-G put it, "combine" three existing tax increment finance districts to divert school property taxes into a bond issue to build a parking deck.

People will flock

Thems four cool dudes. Everyone's favorite easy listening post-grunge purveyors are coming to Alltel in April.

The Weekend: Venus Mission, Michael Burks, Eclipse Glasses and more

Venus Mission. FRIDAY 12/12The hugely popular '80s cover band Venus Mission is sure to pack 'em in at Sticky Fingerz, 10 p.m., $7.

Saturday To-Do: Dub Trio

DUB TRIO9:30 p.m., Juanita's. $7.It's not a combination you hear every day.

Saturday To-Do: Reverend Horton Heat

REVEREND HORTON HEAT8 p.m., the Village. $20 adv., $25 d.o.s.I first heard of the Reverend when a buddy told me that during a Texas stop on the 1992 Lollapalooza tour, Ministry's Al Jourgensen wandered into a bar and was so awestruck by the performer that, without a word, he approached the stage, leaned over and began grooming Heat's boots — with his tongue.

Saturday To: All Night Drug Prowling Wolves

ALL NIGHT DRUG PROWLING WOLVES9 p.m., White Water. $5.It's a reunion.

West Memphis 3 movie, not likely coming to a theater near you

Production on a big screen adaptation of Times contributing editor Mara Leveritt's acclaimed book "Devil's Knot" is on indefinite hold, director Scott Derrickson ("Exorcism of Emily Rose," "Day the Earth Stood Still") told Rotten Tomatoes.

Patrol car? Look again

The State Police is rolling out "stealth" patrol cars. With oficial markings on only one side, the cars can hide out more easily in traffic so troopers can catch drivers who follow too close and otherwise operate recklessly.

School shooter engages gun lobby

The Times' article on Westside School shooter Andrew Golden's application for a concealed weapon permit has drawn national attention.

Nolan returns to Bud Walton

Former Hog basketball Coach Nolan Richardson had a warm return to Walton Arena today, joined by Athletic Director Jeff Long and current Coach John Pelphrey.

Givebacks in Texarkana

Workers at Cooper Tire in Texarkana seem ready to take a three-year wage freeze, pension concessions and higher health costs to keep the 1,400-worker plant open.

Burnett dons pinstripes

A little sports news to please a NY Yankee and A.J. Burnett fan among the readership.

Friday thread

Here you go.

'Everyone would be in love with me'

Santa will be at the Little Rock Zoo Saturday, but to heck with that. Remember the old jingle about Oscar Mayer Wieners -- "I wish I was an Oscar Mayer wiener, etc.?"

What'll you do ... ? UPDATE

 I've given Blog readers reports from my favorite Democrat-Gazette columnist, Gene Lyons, about his rescue of the sickly Charolais calf,  Layla, in Gene's new life as a full-time resident of rural Perry County.

What'll you do ... ? UPDATE

 I've given Blog readers reports from my favorite Democrat-Gazette columnist, Gene Lyons, about his rescue of the sickly Charolais calf,  Layla, in Gene's new life as a full-time resident of rural Perry County.

Labor-management

Brummett writes that U.S. automakers must be saved. But he also portrays the failure of a bailout this week as equally the product of a split between unions and anti-union politicians that suggests an impartial mediation.

Have things improved?

I've twice tried to post comments to blog threads and I've been able to sign in and post both times.

The Nine at historic event

The Little Rock Nine and the Tuskegee Airmen, historic figures in the struggle for racial equality, will be among the invited guests when Barack Obama is inaugurated as the first black president.

Where there's a will ....

... there's a Webb. Doyle that is. David Kinkade at The Arkansas Project scoops the world on the new chairman of the Arkansas Republican Party.

Idle gossip

This from a Farm Journal newsletter, FYI: Speculation on who will get the top USDA post continues.

Seasonal greenery

I'd mentioned earlier that former President Clinton would be joined by Gov. Mike Beebe and state Rep. Kathy Webb, co-chair of Beebe's Global Warming task force, at his library today for an announcement.

Hey, Rod, it's Rahm

Yes, an Obama adviser talked with Ill. Gov. Rod Blagojevich about a successor in Obama's Senate seat.

The line is open

I hope it will remain easier to access. I'm heading with my wife to a gathering of Arkansas S.O.B.'s tonight.

Color Us Unimpressed

As has been noted many times before, the SEC is pretty much a murderer's row of coaches.

The tiger v. the teddy bear

John Brummett provides his own account of his cage match with KATV's Kristin Fisher over "choose your news," newsroom webcams and other aspects of the new media world.

Who should get death?

Betsey Wright, Bill Clinton's former gubernatorial chief of staff, wrote me yesterday about the changing standard of capital prosecutions in Washington County.

NLR's bodacious grab

THE ENCLAVE: Should its property taxes go to NLR schools or to build a hotel parking deck five blocks away?

NLR's bodacious grab

THE ENCLAVE: Should its property taxes go to NLR schools or to build a hotel parking deck five blocks away?

Party report

Former President Bill Clinton did attend the party for his 1977-92 Arkansas staffers at the library's Cox Center Saturday night.

Sole man

They're still not chunking flowers at Bush in Iraq. In a surprise trip there today, Bush showed sharp reflexes in twice ducking shoes hurled at him by an Iraqi journalist.

The hotel miracle

The Iconoclast, which follows the boondoggling mayors of Northwest Arkansas with a ferocity that would make Commodore Hays think I'm a teddy bear, offers more reasons to be wary of public officials bearing hotels as keys to economic development.

Lincoln's raspberry to autoworkers

Sen. Blanche Lincoln's wet raspberry to autoworkers may be a sign, writes Nate Silver, of an interesting trend to watch next year.

Sunday thoughts?

A new opportunity.

If it's the Thought That Counts, What Do These Gifts Say?

Over the years, I've learned the unexpected joy in getting a truly weird gift.  It's similar to the joy I get from watching some really bad movies, but there are times when you get something so wrong the only thing to do is revel in its inappropriateness.  My parents and I were visiting my aunt and her husband, John, in Nashville last year when John came home with a gift one of his patients had made for him.  It was a pair of slippers made out of Kotex pads.  One sanitary napkin was laid out flat and another was wrapped around the end.  There were Christmas tree stickers on the heel of each slipper and red bows stuck on the top of the loop you slide your foot into.  My favorite part was the fine craftsmanship that went into it since the two pads were stapled (!!!)

Presidential vote UPDATE

The drama won't be high, but the secretary of state's office and AETN have joined hands to provide a live webcast today of the Arkansas vote in the Electoral College.

Behind closed doors

The Arkansas Project provides some details on a weekend strategy session by would-be insider leadership of the "new" Arkansas Republican Party.

The Arkansas factor

Many have written before that the 60-vote filibuster-proof majority in the Senate is not a sure-fire number either way when you consider 1) Republicans who might have electoral reasons not to go lockstep with their party and 2) ditto Democrats, particularly Southern Democrats.

Re weather

The morning walk ended in rain. Weather Service forecast for Little Rock indicates today may be OK. Tomorrow morning?

Eckford: Thanks, but ...

I spoke with Elizabeth Eckford this morning about her attending the Barack Obama inauguration as a special invitee along with other members of the Little Rock Nine.

Last person out of Fort Smith ...

Baldor to lay off 900.

Single-sex education

You may remember that middle schools in Jacksonville were segregated by sex three years ago.

Drill Baby Drill? Get Real Baby, Real...

Here's a good article with a little bit of perspective on the whole "Drill baby drill" argument.  It's from a website that I visit regularly called The Oil Drum that usually has lengthy blog posts with some pretty detailed analysis of what's going on in the oil and gas industries.  It's not too long, and even has some graphs to help you along.  The authors boil it down to three main points:

UPDATE: Chenal Circle fire

George Waldon at Arkansas Business takes a look at the status of the investigation into the million-dollar arson in May at the Chenal Circle home of Aaron Jones.

Thurman Remembers, Part 1

If you need indisputable proof that time is moving much too fast, consider the following: this April will mark the 15th anniversary of the Razorbacks' first and only basketball national championship.

Industrial bond issue coming

The city of Little Rock is preparing to approve a $150 million industrial development bond issue to build facilities for LM Glasfiber, the windmill blade manufacturer that will have plants on Lindsey Drive and Scott Hamilton.

Sen. Tim Griffin? UPDATE

Surely not. He'll talk about union busting.

Last Saturday: Egyptr, Velvet Kente, Eclipse Glasses

Eclipse Glasses. Photo by AiLien Draheim.

TIF tiff

The county assessor's office, which has been meeting with North Little Rock officials over Mayor Pat Hays creatively underhanded plan to build a hotel parking deck at Maple and Broadway with school tax money diverted from already-improved property elsewhere in town, has an update.

Linkage: New music from Bishop Allen, Josh Lucas is Thurman Munson and more

  That's Brooklyn sugar-pop act Bishop Allen on Fuel TV doing the unreleased track "Shanghaied."

The High Fructose Corn Syrup Argument.

Is it good for you or bad for you?  A new report from WebMD Health News cites an expert panel in saying that there's no additional risk for obesity from high fructose corn syrup than from sucrose or fruit-based concentrates.  That hasn't stopped soup-and-sandwich chain Jason's Deli from taking steps to eradicate it from its menu.  Already gone from the food menu, Jason's is polling customers on whether to lose drinks with the substance as well.  Meanwhile, you may have seen ads from the Corn Refiner's Association about the value and safety of high fructose corn syrup in foods (video on the jump).

Weather watch

You can count on Pulaski County being the first to bail when the weather forecast turns iffy.

Weather watch

You can count on Pulaski County being the first to bail when the weather forecast turns iffy.

Monday: ACAC opens new space, jazz at the Afterthought

On your way to fight the throngs at the grocery store, why not stop and see a show?

Nothing from nothing is nothing

There was much sadness when Toyota decided Mississippi offered more loot and better workers than Arkansas for a new assembly plant.

Your turn

Hope all is well.

Yes, it's icy

LR city offices open at noon; state offices at 10 a.m. in Central Arkansas. LR schools closed.

NW wind

Icy roads or no, the Internet gossip must go through. In this case, it's the Fayetteville Trucker's message that former Attorney General Steve Clark will be named to head the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce even though he backed Lioneld Jordan (not the establishment candidate) in Jordan's defeat of incumbent Mayor Dan Coody.

NW wind

Icy roads or no, the Internet gossip must go through. In this case, it's the Fayetteville Trucker's message that former Attorney General Steve Clark will be named to head the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce even though he backed Lioneld Jordan (not the establishment candidate) in Jordan's defeat of incumbent Mayor Dan Coody.

Voting by mail

For a slow morning, a study on voting by mail. (I favor mail voting, including at least one state's all-mail vote.)

Voting by mail

For a slow morning, a study on voting by mail. (I favor mail voting, including at least one state's all-mail vote.)

Sen. Lincoln's opponent

John Brummett did the old-fashioned thing. He called up outgoing Farm Bureau president Stanley Reed and asked him about rumors of his interest in running for U.S. Senate.

Who's Your Clarence?

The Arkansas Times has joined The Rep and others in an essay contest -- "Who's Your Clarence?"

In re Blago

This story is days late in appearing, but no less relevant as the media conviction of the Illinois governor continues unabated.

The end of history

It's official. Newspapers in one of the country's largest markets -- Detroit -- will no longer be available by daily home delivery in paper form beginning in March.

UPDATE: Another Cease and Desist Order...

Central Arkansas Disposal in Searcy, AR, has been given a cease and desist order by ADEQ.  I got a call about his late yesterday evening and couldn't get a response from ADEQ in time.  Channel 4 has a report here.  Last week we told you about a cease and desist order issued to Fayetteville Shale Land Farm, LLC, near Carlisle.  There was no fine issued in accordance with that order.  The KARK report does not mention a fine with this one either.  With all the polluting these guys are doing, they should probably pony up some cash to remedy the situation, if that can even be done.  When I have more information, I will be sure to post it.  I won't be in the office until this afernoon on account of the weather.  Maybe I've got some info from ADEQ on my machine.  This one is pretty egregious.  I'd be interested to see the inspection report.  UPDATE: Here's a copy of the Emergency Order.  The order says that drilling fluids were being dumped directly from one of the reserve pits on-site into Raft Creek, presenting "an imminent danger to public health and welfare."  Also included in the report is the account from an Arkansas Game and Fish biologist who observed "fish kills" in water connected to Raft Creek by wetlands.  Teresa Marks passed along this comment regarding fines: "There is not generally going to be a fine assessed with an Emergency Order as it is designed to address an imminent situation, however, an enforcement action likely will follow an Emergency Order and that is when penalties can be assessed."

UPDATE: Another Cease and Desist Order...

Central Arkansas Disposal in Searcy, AR, has been given a cease and desist order by ADEQ.  I got a call about his late yesterday evening and couldn't get a response from ADEQ in time.  Channel 4 has a report here.  Last week we told you about a cease and desist order issued to Fayetteville Shale Land Farm, LLC, near Carlisle.  There was no fine issued in accordance with that order.  The KARK report does not mention a fine with this one either.  With all the polluting these guys are doing, they should probably pony up some cash to remedy the situation, if that can even be done.  When I have more information, I will be sure to post it.  I won't be in the office until this afernoon on account of the weather.  Maybe I've got some info from ADEQ on my machine.  This one is pretty egregious.  I'd be interested to see the inspection report.  UPDATE: Here's a copy of the Emergency Order.  The order says that drilling fluids were being dumped directly from one of the reserve pits on-site into Raft Creek, presenting "an imminent danger to public health and welfare."  Also included in the report is the account from an Arkansas Game and Fish biologist who observed "fish kills" in water connected to Raft Creek by wetlands.  Teresa Marks passed along this comment regarding fines: "There is not generally going to be a fine assessed with an Emergency Order as it is designed to address an imminent situation, however, an enforcement action likely will follow an Emergency Order and that is when penalties can be assessed."

Rumors of justice

The earlier mention of Tim Griffin naturally put me to thinking about Obama-era U.S. attorneys in Arkansas.

Another polluter called down

Gerard Matthews' Shale Watch blog has an item on another ADEQ enforcement action against another operator's mishandling of shale drilling waste.

Foreign aid payments

Republicans and Blanche Lincoln balked at making loans to U.S. automakers, even if it means economic catastrophe for hundreds of thousands of workers in direct and related employment.

Foreign aid payments

Republicans and Blanche Lincoln balked at making loans to U.S. automakers, even if it means economic catastrophe for hundreds of thousands of workers in direct and related employment.

Thurman Remembers, Part 2

Here now is the second part of our Q&A with Razorback great Scotty Thurman (here's part 1).

LR city board meeting delayed

Weather forces postponement of tonight's meeting until Dec. 22.

Tuesday To-Do: Hana Pestle with Ben Moody

Hanna Pestle. HANA PESTLE WITH BEN MOODY9 p.m., Juanita's.

Fed rate cut

The cut, to a record low of 0 to 0.25 percent, is not exactly a vote of confidence in the economy.

Work continues in NLR

Contrary to what I was told yesterday by a representative of the county assessor's office -- and probably it's only because minds changed -- Mayor Pat Hays is moving ahead with a plan to combine three downtown tax increment finance districts to produce sufficient tax revenues to build a parking deck and other improvements for a proposed hotel at Maple and Broadway.

Work continues in NLR

Contrary to what I was told yesterday by a representative of the county assessor's office -- and probably it's only because minds changed -- Mayor Pat Hays is moving ahead with a plan to combine three downtown tax increment finance districts to produce sufficient tax revenues to build a parking deck and other improvements for a proposed hotel at Maple and Broadway.

This is why they lost and will keep losing

After eight years of the disasterous economic policies of George Bush - we have a great gift - new leadership, new ideas, and no national elections for some times.

Web fliering 2.0

  Courtesy of Times contributor Derek Jenkins.In case you need to get out of town for New Year's Eve.

Booze still flowing at Counterpoint

The North Little Rock late-night club Counterpoint remains open until 5 a.m. despite a North Little Rock ordinance, which went into effect at the end of August and requires all clubs in the North Little Rock city limits, regardless of license, to close at 2 a.m.So far, according to operator Cheryl Drennan, the club has been fined $2000, or four times at $500 a pop.

Weather eye

The inclement weather policy for Arkansas state employees -- a delayed start -- continues tomorrow (Wednesday) in Central Arkansas, the governor's office has announced.

Everyone to play Jazz Fest

Aretha, queenly. At least a third, maybe half, of all famous musicians are coming to Jazz Fest next year (April 24-26; April 30-May 3).

Al Bell is online

Brinkley native Al Bell, who owned Stax, served as president of Motown and did all kinds of other influential things, recently launched Al Bell Presents, a website that despite its "About Us" section — "The first thing you should know about Al Bell Presents is that it’s not about us; it’s about you…and the music"— seems, at least for now, to be mainly a really slick home page for Bell.

American Princes, Magnet-fied

It's taken me two days to remember what someone in the know told me in the wee hours of Sunday: American Princes "Other People" is going to be Magnet magazine's number one album of the year.

Hog QB packs his grip

Do Arkansas Blog readers care that Nathan Dick is saying adios to the Razorbacks? If so, now you know.

Open line

I just took a nice brisk walk through the quiet streets and encountered virtually no ice.

Open line

I just took a nice brisk walk through the quiet streets and encountered virtually no ice.

Back to your regular program

NBC says Tom Vilsack will be Obama's Agriculture secretary. Back to figuring out opponents for Sen. Lincoln in 2010.

Getting the Kentucky Perspective

Our friends over at A Sea of Blue were kind enough to link to the 2nd installment of our Scotty Thurman interview because of the Kentucky content.

Top target

Speculation about who'll win in 2010 is rampant, and in Arkansas, the politician most speculated about is the state's senior senator, Blanche Lincoln. Republicans didn't even field a candidate against Sen. Mark Pryor this year. No one expects Lincoln to b

Minds and bodies

The legislature looked over athletic spending at state high schools yesterday. I wish they'd turned these numbers -- ranked by percentage of budget -- into per pupil spending.

Minds and bodies

The legislature looked over athletic spending at state high schools yesterday. I wish they'd turned these numbers -- ranked by percentage of budget -- into per pupil spending.

Now the Republican perspective

David Sanders on RepubliBaptist Stanley Reed's flirtation with a run for political office. In short, if he runs, it will be God's doing.

Free booze today!

BELLY UP TO THE BAR: More where this came from for ABC employees. Arkansas alcoholic beverage regulators are intent on raising fees on beer, wine and booze.

Texarkana jobs saved UPDATE

It's a sad Christmas for Cooper Tire workers in Albany, Ga. They get the axe while jobs are preserved at Texarkana, Ohio and Mississippi plants.

Gym chatter

A guy on the elliptical trainer at the gym this morning could be heard muttering that state Rep. Chris "Angry Man" Thyer of Jonesboro was working hard on landing a U.S. attorney appointment.

Dogtown doings

The mayor and city attorney of North Little Rock don't take my calls. They don't like my questions.

Dogtown doings

The mayor and city attorney of North Little Rock don't take my calls. They don't like my questions.

Tis the season

The Arkansas Community Foundation has raised $85,000 toward a goal of $200,000 for a matching campaign to help agencies that fight hunger.

Free Candy: 'Jungle Juice'

Stream Kwestion and Goines new-ish mixtape "Jungle Juice" below. Or download it for free here — (requires registration).

Drexel sees 'Green Sky'

“Green Sky,” the latest album from Drexel Baker III (Go Fast), is out now. The Seattle-based label WorldSound released the record, and Koch is distributing it.

Thurman Remembers, Part 3

Our Scotty Thurman Q&A rolls on today with part 3 of our interview (here's part 1; here's part 2).

Some like it, some don't...

That's Salazar in the cowboy hat.  (Photo by Kathryn Scott Osler - Denver Post) Such is life.  Some in the environmental community are upset with the pick of Sen. Ken Salazar for Secretary of the Interior.  The Post Independent of Glenwood Springs, CO has more here.

Simmering down here, boss

I got a callback from Gov. Mike Beebe's office about questions related to my early morning rant about a proposal to end a rule prohibiting gifts to ABC staff from the people they regulate.

NY Lawmaker Calling for Stiff Regulations

Hinchey pictured on the right Congressman Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) is asking New York's Department of Environmental Conservation to get tough with the oil and gas industry.

No moonlighting, judge

The Arkansas Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee has issued an advisory opinion that says newly-elected Little Rock District Judge Mark Leverett may not serve as a part-time deputy public defender in Sherwood while he holds office as the city's environmental judge.

Spa tax aginners lose another

Word comes that a special judge has thrown out a lawsuit challenging a bond issue election in which Hot Springs voters went 3-1 for using the 3 percent tourism tax to pay for $1.2 million worth of heat and air work at the Mid-America Science Museum.

Screw the working man

2010 is an election year. So you shouldn't be surprised that the Ark. senator up next year would see no reason why workers would feel they need of any protection against coerceive management, the bosses being so famously beneficent and all.

Let's go fishing

Various dignitaries cut the ribbon Wednesday on the Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center in Riverfront Park.

Price gouging -- not!

Remember the hurricane-related hysteria about gas price gouging? So far, though the investigation continues, Attorney General Dustin McDaniel has specifically absolved four gas retailers.

More judges in hot water

The state Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission has announced formal disciplinary hearings against two more judges.

Late night open line

Sorry. I had places to go.

Law east of the Cache

Sort of a coda to L.T. Simes' many troubles is this continuing reporting from Andrew Bagley and the turmoil  that ensued when a Helena-West Helena alderman died and differences arose over who should fill the seat.
Advertisement