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Updated: 17 hours 38 min ago

Letter: Move To California, Dan

March 28, 2014 - 2:56pm

In a letter to the Coeur d'Alene editor, Dave Sheldon of Hayden takes former county clerk Dan English to task for switching sides to vote in the closed GOPrimary:

"For Mr. English (Dan English, pictured) to purport that Republicans want to suppress voter turnout is ridiculous and unfounded! This nation, under God, is afflicted with apathy, and it disgusts me. That is the reason for low voter turnout, on BOTH sides. And like it or not, we basically have a two-party system. Is it the fault of Republicans that you can't come up with a strong Democrat? It's all about numbers; there are simply more Republicans here than Democrats. It's weird, but I have more Democrat friends here in Idaho than I ever dreamed I would even admit to knowing in California. And I believe it's because we respect each other and listen, and yes, avoid some topics that we agree to just disagree on. When I lived in California, with a vast majority of Democrats, my vote was usually a futile exercise in civic responsibility, just as Mr. English feels his is now. I remedied that problem and got the heck out of Dodge!" More here.

Question: The letter writer goes on to say that English should move to California if he wants to elect Democrats. Thoughts?

HBO Blogosphere -- 3.28.14

March 28, 2014 - 2:28pm

Appointed County Clerk Jim Brannon responds to a question from President Jeff Ward of the Reagan Republicans, right, while challenger Don Pischner listens at the group's weekly luncheon at Fedora Thursday. (Photo: Duane Rasmussen)

HucksOnline numbers (for Thursday, March 27): 7611 page-views/4511 unique views

Pastor Writes To Spurned 'Tomboy'

March 28, 2014 - 1:55pm

Sunnie Kahle, 8, recently withdrew from Timberlake Christian School in Forest, Va. after the school sent a letter asking her to either dress and act more feminine or not enroll again because she looked too much like a boy. Story here. (AP Photo/The News & Advance, Jill Nance)

Rev. Emily C. Heath of the United Methodist Church wrote the following blog post for Sunnie Kahle, the 8-year-old who was told by officials at her Virginia Christian school not to return until she dressed and acted more feminine: "I'll bet that I was a lot like you when I was eight years old. I didn't like dresses. I liked playing football and collecting baseball cards. My favorite things were airplanes and science kits. And I liked cutting my hair short. A lot of people called me a tomboy. I think they meant that as an insult, but I actually thought that was pretty neat. Maybe you do too. Or maybe you don't. Which is okay, because if you don't you can call yourself whatever you want. You get that choice, just like you get to choose what kind of clothes you wear, and what hobbies you like." More here.


Just Say No To Carrot Top

March 28, 2014 - 1:39pm
"Taking kids to 'Noah' prepare for this scene -- animals try to throw themselves overboard after finding out the Ark's headliner is Carrot Top!" -- GA945 tweet.

Question: This is the 2nd snarky comment I've read about Carrot Top this week. Never paid much attention to entertainer. Has he done something particularly offensive that he's become a punch line?

Poll: Young Adults Turning Bluer

March 28, 2014 - 1:26pm

Young adults have typically identified with the Democratic Party, but those ties have become stronger since 2006. The Gallup Poll finds that 54% of 18-to-29-year-olds on average since 2006 have aligned themselves with Democrats compared with 36% who identify with the Republican Party. From 1993-2003, the gap among young adults wasn’t as wide.  Gallup’s analysis of its polls taken over the years finds that 47% of 18-to-29-year-olds, on average, identified with Democrats compared with 42% for Republicans/USA Today On Politics. More here.

Question: Does this political demographic concern you?

Fewer Idahoans Moving To Cities

March 28, 2014 - 1:11pm

The shift of Idaho's population from rural counties to urban areas slowed last year. Estimates released by the Census Bureau on Thursday showed the 33 rural counties saw their combined population increase for the first time in three years. The population of the rural counties rose two-tenths of a percent from mid-2012 to mid-2013, or about 1,200 people. The population of the 11 urban counties increased 1.5 percent. Statewide, Idaho's population rose 1 percent to just over 1.6 million, resuming a growth rate higher than the national rate of seven-tenths of a percent/Associated Press. More here.

Question: Do you prefer to live in the city or the country? Why?

Labrador Defends Hobby Lobby Stand

March 28, 2014 - 1:01pm

Congressman Raul Labrador sent the following email to his supporters today:

"This week, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a landmark case that will help decide the future of religious freedom in America.  The justices are weighing the constitutionality of one of the most controversial aspects of Obamacare -- the requirement that employers must provide birth control and abortifacients to their employees, even if doing so violates their deeply-held religious beliefs.  The main case centers around Hobby Lobby, an arts-and-crafts chain based in Oklahoma City that is run on biblical principles.  For example, they close on Sundays and refuse to sell shot glasses.  They object to the life-terminating drugs and devices required under the Obamacare mandate (better known as the “HHS mandate”) on religious grounds. And yet, if they don’t follow the mandate, they are facing annual fines of $36,500 per employee, which comes out to nearly $657 million per year. A lower court ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby.  Now, the U.S. Supreme Court will make the final call.  Their ruling is expected in June." More here. (AP file photo)

Question: Have you been following this case?

Joker: If KCRCC OK'd News Stories

March 28, 2014 - 12:45pm

Tongue firmly cheeked, Joker offers an advanced copy of an article about KCRCC (Central Committee not Concerned Citizens) meeting, cleared by Chairman Neil Oliver for publication in the Coeur d'Alene Press:

"Fedora was the site another incredible Republican meeting. Fulcher gave a rousing speech and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house. Kelly and Neil worked hand in hand to approve a set of minutes that made people cheer. There were no disagreements about who would be speaking at the Lincoln Day dinner and we all agreed that the media is out to distort our mission. We passed a resolution condemning Dave Oliveria and his henchmen Jeff Selle. Neil then went on to explain a new litmus test for being a true conservative. There were no objections. Later we burned Obama in effigy in the parking lot and proclaimed ourselves patriots. Next week: Mandatory militia

Question: You think it couldn't happen?

Stradivarius On Parade

March 28, 2014 - 11:54am

Margaret Batjer, concertmaster of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, plays the the 1716 "Milstein” Stradivarius during a rehearsal at the Colburn School in Los Angeles. The violins of Antonio Stradivari, arguably the most famous instruments ever created, have an almost mystical reputation for beauty and heavenly tone. This week eight of them have been brought together in Los Angeles for "Strad Fest LA." (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

Question: Does anyone in your family play a violin? Who? How well?

AM Scanner Traffic -- 3.28.14

March 28, 2014 - 11:45am
  • 11:29 a.m. Someone is having trouble breathing @ 9400 block of Coeur d'Alene Lake Drive/CdA.
  • 11:09 a.m. Juvenile probation officer reports possible drug activity in 300 block of W4th/Post Falls.
  • 10:51 a.m. A metal barrel and other metal are lying on w/b I-90/MP 18 (Sunnyside Road/CdA).
  • 10:35 a.m. Driver of 1991 gold Toyota Landcruiser possibly DUI @ e/b I-90/MP 6 (Seltice Way).
  • 10:22 a.m. A fawn is alive after being hit by a vehicle but isn't moving well @ s/b H95/MP 445 (Corbin Hill Road); a 2nd deer is walking n/b on s/b side of highway nearby. 3 motorists have stopped to render aid.
  • 10:12 a.m. A cable line is hanging low above H53, b/n Fowler & Meyer/Rathdrum.
  • 9:30 a.m. ISP has reopened H41, near Twin Lakes, after rollover crash (8:43 item).
  • 9:13 a.m. PFPD officer wonders if a person reported misssing still has a warrant for his arrest.
  • 9:04 a.m. CPD officer in unmarked vehicle learns that driver he pulled over for speeding has called 911 to confirm that he's truly a police officer. Responds officer to dispatch: "You'd think my uniform would give it away." Dispatch: "Apparently not."
  • 9:01 a.m. Traffic is being diverted onto Seasons Road to detour around crash site, H41 completely blocked.
  • 8:52 a.m. Officer on scene says car needs to be stabilized, patient still inside (8:43 item).
  • 8:48 a.m. Officer requests traffic control help from Spirit Lake Police Department (8:43 item).
  • 8:46 a.m. Officer reports that extrication will be needed for H41 crash (8:43 item).
  • 8:43 a.m. Female is trapped in vehicle after rollover @ n/b H41/Seasons (near Twin Lakes), engine smoking.
  • 8:35 a.m. Neighbor named Michael is banging on caller's apartment door in Post Falls.

UIdaho Preps For Guns On Campus

March 28, 2014 - 11:38am

Senate Bill 1254, a recently passed Idaho law allowing residents with an enhanced concealed-carry permit to carry a concealed weapon on state university and college campuses, will take effect July 1. Until then, the University of Idaho is taking measures to make sure its own policies are in accordance with the new legislation. UI President Chuck Staben, pictured, sent a letter to the university community Thursday announcing the formation of a task force that will ultimately recommend what policy changes the school should make to ensure campus safety while adhering to the state's rules/Anthony Kuipers, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here. (Photo: Lewiston Tribune)

Question: We'll soon see how much it'll cost Idaho's higher-education centers to follow this potentially dangerous law. Thoughts?

Spring On The Fernan Farm

March 28, 2014 - 11:27am

On her Idaho Scenic Images Facebook wall, Linda Lantzy labels this photo: "Spring on the Farm -- Fernan, Idaho." Also, she offers this advice to other photographers: "Don't ignore the shadows. Using shadows to your benefit in composition can make or break a photograph. Shadows are just as important as your light elements."

Hey, Didn't You Use To Be ...

March 28, 2014 - 11:24am
... A candidate for Kootenai County Commissioner Jai Nelson's District 2 seat?

CdA Wastewater Fees Going Up

March 28, 2014 - 11:03am

A five-year wastewater rate plan approved by the Coeur d’Alene City Council in 2013 enters its second year April 1 and users can expect an 8.5 percent increase in their monthly bill. For a single family residence the bill will increase from $26.40 per month to $28.50 per month. The fee adjustments are necessary to pay for a multi-million dollar expansion to the wastewater treatment facility necessary to meet federal discharge regulations. Despite the increase, Coeur d’Alene’s wastewater fees remain below many regional cities. For single family dwellings, residents of Spokane pay $51.34 per month, City of Spokane Valley, $47.01, Post Falls charges $33.79 monthly, and Hayden residents pay $57.72 bi-monthly, which calculates to $28.86 per month/Keith Erickson, Coeur d'Alene Today.


Poll: Don't Support Fulcher Strategy

March 28, 2014 - 10:46am
  • Thursday Poll: Exactly one half of Hucks Nation opposes the strategy of voting for underdog Russ Fulcher in the GOPrimary because Democrat A.J. Balukoff would have a better chance of beating him in the general election. 49 of 98 respondents (50%) opposed the possible strategy. 36 of 98 (36.73%) supported it. 13 (13.27%) were undecided.
  • Weekend Poll: Should the state of Idaho fight the Coeur d'Alene Casino's plan to offer Texas Hold 'Em & gambling tournaments?

CdA Casino To Offer Texas Hold 'Em

March 28, 2014 - 10:28am

The Idaho Constitution outlaws poker, but the Coeur d'Alene Tribe is going all in. "Poker is basically played all around the state every night in people's homes, at family reunions, at nursing homes and in family rooms," said Helo Hancock, the Tribe's legislative director. "It goes on every day." And, Hancock said, the state is doing little to stop it. This spring, the Coeur d'Alene Casino will open a poker room offering live games of Texas Hold 'Em and tournament play. Hancock said the Tribe views the poker games that will be offered as Class II gaming under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and not subject to state law. Adding poker is a strategic move, Hancock said, that will allow the casino to compete with Washington casinos/Taryn Thompson, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here. (Coeur d'Alene Press photo by Shawn Gust: Coeur d’Alene Casino’s new Poker Room is slated to open May 2)

Question: Should the state of Idaho fight the Coeur d'Alene Casino's move to allow live games of Texas Hold 'Em and tournament play?

Healthy Salgado Headlines Bluesfest

March 28, 2014 - 10:06am

First things first. Curtis Salgado, pictured, is healthy. Which is saying something. Last time the Oregon-based singer was in the Inland Northwest, to headline the Wallace Blues Festival in 2012, he’d just gotten word that his lung cancer had returned, and within a few weeks he underwent a partial lobectomy. All this was after his bout with liver cancer and a liver transplant in 2006. Still, one can’t keep a great bluesman down. Even half a lung shy, he’s still able to sing, play harmonica and create the same electric blues set that has entertained fans across the country and around the world. “Maybe your body compensates for it, I don’t know,” he said in a recent telephone interview. Local fans will be able to see for themselves when Salgado headlines the Coeur d’Alene Blues Festival on Saturday/Carolyn Lamberson, SR. More here.

Question: Do you plan to attend the Coeur d'Alene Blues Festival this weekend?

AM Headlines -- 3.28.14

March 28, 2014 - 9:51am

In a steady snow snower, snowboarders ride up chairlift 5, with the Ski Patrol building behind them, under the lights, at Mt. Spokane Ski and Snowboard Park. Rich Landers/Outdoors blog tells how a Spokane skier survived a thunderstorm lightning bolt Thursday afternoon. Click here. (SR file photo: Jesse Tinsley)

Tweetable Tweet

March 28, 2014 - 9:21am
"Idaho just raised its speed limit to 80 mph. Now you can get out of there even faster" -- Steven Colbert tweet.

Trib Jeers Flip-Flopping Russ Fulcher

March 28, 2014 - 9:16am

In his weekly Cheers & Jeers column, Opinion Editor Marty Trillhaase gives Jeers ... to Idaho GOP gubernatorial hopeful Russ Fulcher. The Meridian Republican wants Idaho to follow Indiana's lead and drop Common Core. As governor of Idaho, I will push for legislation that allows Idaho to opt out of this top-down, one-size-fits-all federal program," Fulcher said. He's having a John Kerry moment. Three years ago as a state senator, Fulcher endorsed those standards. Now he's changed his mind - just in time to appeal to his party's conservative base in Idaho's closed GOP primary. Full Cheers & Jeers column here.

Question: Do you think Fulcher is pandering to conservative hardliners now? Or has he had a change of heart about Common Core?