Rand Paul Is Supporting Treason

Rand Paul and Donald Trump are now best friends, as the Kentucky Republican has become a rare ray of GOP support for the embattled president. [H-L]

Former President Barack Obama offered a sobering and alarming view of the state of the world in what appeared to be a rebuke of Donald Trump, warning that nationalist and populist sentiments are making their way into the mainstream. [HuffPo]

Former University of Louisville President James Ramsey resigned under pressure a mere 27 days into the 2016-17 fiscal year, but he was still the nation’s highest-paid public college president that year. [C-J/AKN]

Special counsel Robert Mueller wants to give a form of immunity to five potential witnesses against former Trump campaign chief Paul Manafort, according to court papers filed Tuesday. [NBC News]

Greenup County is one step closer to requiring Hepatitis A vaccinations for all food service workers in the county. [Ashland Independent]

Two security experts from the Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory drove to San Antonio, Texas, in March 2017 with a sensitive mission: to retrieve dangerous nuclear materials from a nonprofit research lab there. Their task, according to documents and interviews, was to ensure that the radioactive materials did not fall into the wrong hands on the way back to Idaho, where the government maintains a stockpile of nuclear explosive materials for the military and others. [CPI]

The Cave City Tourist and Convention Commission’s board of directors voted Monday during a special-called meeting to accept the resignation of executive director Sharon Tabor after meeting in closed session to discuss a personnel issue. [Glasgow Daily Times]

This data conclusively debunks the myth of conservative censorship on Facebook. We studied Facebook pages that post content about American political news. Conservatives are not being censored — in fact, right-wing Facebook pages are thriving. [MMFA]

The Glasgow City Council is putting $100,000 toward a construction project expected to alleviate one of motorists’ most pervasive headaches. City officials hope additional funding can be attained through a federal grant. [BGDN]

The same Russian military intelligence service now accused of disrupting the 2016 presidential election in America may also be responsible for the nerve agent attack in Britain against a former Russian spy — an audacious poisoning that led to a geopolitical confrontation this spring between Moscow and the West. [NY Times]

What the hell is wrong with JK McKnight giving STEVE HENRY money for an organization that was caught up in his (Henry’s) guilty pleas in 2009? People are stupid. Really stupid. Henry’s various “foundations” and campaign funds were used for his personal gain. He made three Alford Pleas. The IRS came for him over the Rosemary Clooney House. Yet these jackasses still think it’s safe to give him money. Stupid, stupid, stupid. [WFPL]

A Russian national with alleged ties to a top Russian official was charged in federal court in Washington Monday with conspiracy to act as an agent of the Russian Federation, and was ordered held without bond. Butina is accused of developing relationships with American politicians and a “gun rights organization,” none of which are named in the affidavit supporting the criminal complaint. She began reaching out to NRA members and other American gun enthusiasts in 2013. Butina also attended an NRA convention in May 2016, where a Republican operative named Paul Erickson worked to get Torshin a meeting with Trump. [WaPo]

State budget officials recently divided up $31 million in state funding between Kentucky’s public universities, but Morehead State University, Kentucky State University and four Eastern Kentucky community colleges each got zero. [H-L]

The labyrinth of cables and hardware that supports the internet is likely to be flooded with saltwater as sea levels rise over the next 15 years, submerging thousands of miles of underground infrastructure, particularly in coastal cities. [HuffPo]

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Another Bevin Administration Scandal

Lexington has been chosen as one of 10 places nationwide where federal authorities will take part in a special enforcement program aimed at curbing distribution of synthetic opioids, powerful painkilling drugs that have helped drive up overdose deaths in Kentucky. [H-L]

You don’t have to believe there was collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia to see this clearly: When Vladimir Putin and his top military intelligence officers facilitated the hacking of the computer systems of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign, they engaged in an act of war against the United States. [HuffPo]

The state’s former top social services official says a colleague sexually harassed her and she was discriminated against at the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, allegations the cabinet says are unsubstantiated. Adria Johnson, who resigned June 4, made the allegations in her resignation letter and a subsequent June 11 letter from her lawyer, Thomas Clay, according to copies of the documents the Courier Journal obtained through an open records request. [C-J/AKN]

Shortly before Donald Trump detonated a NATO summit, shanked the beleaguered British prime minister and prepped for a face-to-face love session with Vladimir Putin, his White House quietly divested itself of a senior official hawkish on Russia and bullish on the transatlantic military alliance. [TDB]

For 10 years, Liberty Place has been a beacon in the night for many women who have faced drug or alcohol addiction. [Richmond Register]

Long-struggling U.S. gambling industries hope to cash in on newly legal sports betting, but the growing wave of electronic and mobile gaming choices is considered more likely to change the face of those businesses rather than revive them. [Reuters]

A proposed doubling of the payroll tax in Raceland has staffers in the Raceland-Worthington School District up in arms, but city officials say there is no other way to get money it needs to pay bills. Teachers, administrators and support workers in the school district dispute the fairness of the tax because many don’t live in the city and they believe Raceland is using them as a cash cow. [Ashland Independent]

Donald Trump pardoned two Oregon ranchers Tuesday, firing a new salvo in a complicated culture war previously marked by air-mailed sex toys, nuanced disputes over the management of public lands, and a police shootout that killed a would-be leader of a modern crackpot revolution. [ThinkProgress]

Morehead State University President Jay Morgan reported to the institution’s Board of Regents last month that he had to cut nearly $11 million in personnel costs to balance the budget for the 2018-19 fiscal year. [The Morehead News]

When President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia sits down with Donald Trump in Helsinki, Finland, on Monday for a meeting he has long wanted, he will already have accomplished virtually everything he could reasonably hope for. [NY Times]

Jimmy Tosh sells a lot of pigs. He is owner and CEO of Tosh Farms, Tosh Pork, and Bacon By Gosh, in Henry County, Tennessee, and has 84 contracted barns in the region where farmers grow pigs for his products. [WFPL]

Scott Pruitt was known inside the Environmental Protection Agency’s headquarters for sipping $10 organic juice infused with kale, sporting Ferragamo shoes with his Hickey Freeman suits, and making biblical references in texts and conversations with aides. [WaPo]

A judge has barred the removal of signs that KentuckyOne Health paid to have at Rupp Arena as the University of Kentucky’s marketing partner tries to kick the hospital company out. [H-L]

Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin were welcomed to Helsinki, Finland, with a potent message about the importance of press freedom ahead of their bilateral summit. [HuffPo]

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Want Kentucky To Survive? Vote Against Republicans No Matter What. There’s No Other Option In 2018.

Preservationists are alarmed that the owner of one of Bourbon County’s oldest houses — built by a Revolutionary War officer in the late 1700s — has said he will demolish it soon if he cannot find a buyer. [Tom Eblen]

Why the American Dream no longer includes home ownership. Before Karyn Chylewski and her husband got married, they spent several adventurous years together traveling and sharing new experiences. Once the Gen-Xers tied the knot, buying a house seemed like the obvious next step. [HuffPo]

In the early 2000s, Iroquois Middle School had a reputation for being tough. The conditions also led to high rates of teacher turnover, and the instability caused by staff churn ultimately harmed students, Vowels said. [C-J/AKN]

The secrets are hidden behind fortified walls in cities across the United States, inside towering, windowless skyscrapers and fortress-like concrete structures that were built to withstand earthquakes and even nuclear attack. [The Intercept]

Whether the Supreme Court affirms a lower court ruling that a pension reform bill violates the state constitution or not, one key lawmaker says the court’s ruling won’t alter the financial stress of the state’s public pension problems or the need to do something about it. [Ronnie Ellis]

U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis denied on Tuesday former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s request to dismiss the case the special counsel Robert Mueller brought against him in Virginia. [TPM]

Welp, this is probably going to end badly for journalism in Kentucky. CNHI, LLC, one of the country’s leading providers of local news and owner of The Daily Independent, said Monday it is exploring the sale of its newspaper properties in 22 states. [Ashland Independent]

The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday imposed limits on the ability of police to obtain cellphone data pinpointing the past location of criminal suspects in a major victory for digital privacy advocates and a setback for law enforcement authorities. [Reuters]

The Horse Cave City Council approved on second reading an ordinance on June 11 adopting the city’s budget for the 2018-19 fiscal year. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The chaotic process of reuniting thousands of migrant children and parents separated by the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy poses great psychological risks, both short- and long-term, mental health experts said on Friday. So does holding those families indefinitely while they await legal proceedings, which could happen under the president’s new executive order. [NY Times]

The Bevin Administration knew this was occurring long before the bribery trial but chose to do nothing. The Bevin folks won’t do anything positive for Kentucky unless they’re forced to by the feds. [WFPL]

Donald Trump is so stupid he doesn’t realize that tariffs are taxes. And Harley should sue his orange ass. [WaPo]

Friday’s partial collapse of a Bardstown rickhouse containing 20,000 barrels of Barton 1792 bourbon will lead to a fine to the distillery’s owner, a state official said Monday. [H-L]

When the news broke last week that migrant children from Central America are being housed in an old Walmart in Brownsville, Texas, it was just the latest indication that the U.S. is fast turning into some kind of dystopian hellscape. [HuffPo]

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Kentucky Bourbon’s Getting Shafted By The EU, Thanks To Republican Stupidity, Beginning Today

Thousands of years ago, humans set up camp in the Daniel Boone National Forest. They made fires, cooked meals and made tools — then they left. Now, EKU students, in collaboration with the U.S. Forest Service, are retracing their steps. [H-L]

Rudy Giuliani says FBI agents interviewed him in his room at the Trump International Hotel earlier this year regarding his 2016 remarks predicting a “surprise” in the closing days of the presidential race that would benefit then-Republican nominee Donald Trump. [HuffPo]

Former Louisville men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino “forced open doors into his long-standing pattern and practice of inappropriate behavior” with his lawsuit against the university, attorneys for the University of Louisville Athletic Association said Monday. [C-J/AKN]

This is still hilarious – I don’t care how badly the guy got his ass beat. A federal judge on Friday sentenced a Kentucky man to 30 days in prison for assaulting U.S. Senator Rand Paul in an attack last November that left the politician with several broken ribs, prosecutors said. [Reuters]

Salisa Luster Harrison told police that she lay in her apartment for two days, beaten, bruised and unconscious, after being raped in 2008. In the days and weeks that followed, Harrison expected her rapist to be brought to justice. Ten years later, she’s still waiting. [WFPL]

ProPublica has obtained audio from inside a U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility, in which children can be heard wailing as an agent jokes, “We have an orchestra here.” [ProPublica]

Throwback to Matt Bevin and the Republicans trying to kill this important institution. The Morehead News has determined that a proposed $25,000 grant from the Morehead Tourism Commission apparently is the final piece of a local funding package to keep Morehead State University’s Kentucky Folk Art Center operating for at least another year. [The Morehead News]

One day in late May 2016, Roger Stone — the political dark sorcerer and longtime confidant of Donald Trump — slipped into his Jaguar and headed out to meet a man with a Make America Great Again hat and a viscous Russian accent. Stone and Caputo’s interactions with Greenberg mean that at least 11 Trump associates or campaign officials have acknowledged interactions with a Russian during the election season or presidential transition. Those interactions have become public in the year and a half since a Trump spokeswoman said that no one associated with the campaign had communications with Russians or other foreign entities. [WaPo]

A budget that includes $75,000 to help the county operate the animal shelter had first reading heard by the Richmond City Commission last week. [Richmond Register]

A few years ago, the US announcing it would abandon the UN Human Rights Council would have been unthinkable. But today, as most of the world — including the UN human rights chief — recoils in horror at the US government’s treatment of migrant children, “inevitable” feels more accurate. The truth is, this is the right time for the US to step away from its seat at the Human Rights Council, as UN Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley announced Tuesday. Under the Trump administration, the United States cannot perform the role that the world needs it to, marshaling allies — especially the members of the G7 that Trump has alienated — to push forward a clear view of universal values in the council’s resolutions. Right now, we’ve made it difficult to get even Canada on our side. [BuzzFeed]

A $50 per year fee appended to property tax bills will replace phone surcharges to fund the Boyd County 911 system. [Ashland Independent]

The European Union will begin charging import duties of 25 percent on a range of U.S. products on Friday, in response to U.S tariffs imposed on EU steel and aluminum early this month, the European Commission said on Wednesday. [Reuters]

The Lexington parking authority could lose more than $200,000 a year when the University of Kentucky takes control of all or parts of more than a dozen streets in coming years as part of a swap that would give the city more than 250 acres of land for economic development. [H-L]

Actor George Takei, who was sent to a Japanese prison camp with his family during World War II, said immigrant detention centers that separate migrant children from their parents are worse than what he experienced. [HuffPo]

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Surprise! Mitch McConnell Wants To Kill The Mueller Investigation

Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd struck down Kentucky’s controversial new public pension law Wednesday. [H-L]

Julian Carroll is a confirmed monster and the fact that neither the Kentucky Democratic Party nor the Republican Party of Kentucky care to oust him is damning. [More H-L]

Conservative groups that promote themselves as “pro-life” and “pro-family” are quietly supporting the Trump administration policy of separating immigrant children from their parents at the border, or refusing to weigh in at all. [HuffPo]

Opposition to Donald Trump’s controversial policy of separating migrant children from their parents at the border crossed partisan lines Tuesday as Sen. Mitch McConnell and U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth said they would support plans to fix the problem. [C-J/AKN]

The Trump administration has likely lost track of nearly 6,000 unaccompanied migrant children, thousands more than lawmakers were alerted to last month, according to a McClatchy review of federal data. [McClatchy]

As Paul Trickel approached the front entrance of the Kentucky state Capitol Monday, he observed three people enter without incident. [Ronnie Ellis]

Just a reminder that Mitch McConnell is trying to kill the Mueller investigation. [The Hill]

Ashland City Commisioner Matt Perkins believes thousands of dollars the city pays annually to elected leaders for vehicle allowances should be re-allocated to help fund the cost of Boyd County’s new animal shelter. [Ashland Independent]

It’s a fundamental part of representative government: Politicians are elected to advocate for their constituents, and not their own interests. But in many states, laws and ethics rules allow representatives to advance bills that would benefit their own financial interests, as well. [ProPublica]

For decades, Kentucky’s own coal stoked the fires that generated most of its electricity. And while some of those power plants have shut down or switched to natural gas, their legacy remains today in the leftover coal ash that’s stored all over the commonwealth. [WFPL]

Donald Trump on Saturday repeated his false assertion that Democrats were responsible for his administration’s policy of separating migrant families apprehended at the border, sticking to a weekslong refusal to publicly accept responsibility for a widely condemned practice that has become a symbol of his crackdown on illegal immigration. [NY Times]

Barren County Fiscal Court approved the second reading of its budget ordinance Tuesday with only two sources of discussion – a summary by the judge-executive of some of the notable changes and expenses and one commentary during the public hearing portion of the court’s regular meeting. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The economy is not robust or wonderful. The average hourly wage paid to a key group of American workers has fallen from last year when accounting for inflation, as an economy that appears strong by several measures continues to fail to create bigger paychecks, the federal government said Tuesday. [WaPo]

A Pike County man who previously pleaded guilty to shooting his brother last June is back in police custody after, Kentucky State Police say, he shot his brother again Thursday. [H-L]

New Republicanism is a disease. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley will announce on Tuesday that the United States is withdrawing from the United Nations Human Rights Council, a Trump administration source told Reuters. [HuffPo]

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Bevin: Like A Domestic Violence Perp

Andy Barr never would have taken a position contrary to Trump if he weren’t under extreme pressure. [H-L]

Former first lady Laura Bush issued a rare castigation of the Trump administration on Sunday, calling family separations at the U.S. border with Mexico “immoral” and drawing parallels to World War II internment camps. [HuffPo]

Before Wathaniel Woods was sentenced to 35 years in prison Friday for killing Louisville Metro Police Officer Nick Rodman during a police chase, Rodman’s widow told the judge how their 3-year-old son now plays with his toy police cruiser, banging it with another car and saying, “Bad guy hit my daddy. My daddy died.” [C-J/AKN]

The first legal challenge to the Trump administration’s crusade for Medicaid work requirements came before a federal judge in Washington on Friday, where attorneys representing 16 low-income Kentuckians argued they would be unlawfully stripped of Medicaid coverage should the court allow the state’s waiver to take effect in July. The groups challenging the policy said the work requirements violate Congress’ original intent for the Medicaid program and instead are a mere cover for cutting tens of thousands of people from the rolls. [TPM]

Authorities are investigating the death of a female inmate found unresponsive at the Boyd County Detention Center Saturday night. [Ashland Independent]

For most Americans, access to decent, affordable rental housing remains cruelly beyond reach. Only in 22 counties in the United States is a one-bedroom home affordable to someone working 40 hours per week at federal minimum wage. [CityLab]

County officials are looking at ways to address an issue with equipment that causes damage to roadway pavement. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Amid Donald Trump’s headaches confirming cabinet secretaries, from neophyte Rex Tillerson to conflict-prone Scott Pruitt to unprepared Betsy DeVos, all of whom squeezed through, Wilbur Ross was a tonic. [Forbes]

Attorney General Andy Beshear has asked Kentucky’s public pension systems to stop investing in companies that he says are fueling the opioid addiction epidemic in the state. [WFPL]

Historically, denaturalization has been an exceedingly rare occurrence, for good reason: by the time a person is naturalized, she has lived in this country for a number of years and has passed the hurdles of obtaining entry, legal permanent residency, and, finally, citizenship. [New Yorker]

The Berea City Council will hear the second reading of the fiscal year 2018-2019 budget on Tuesday, including proposals that could impact support for an opioid treatment program, a youth food program and tourism. [Richmond Register]

Amy McGrath doesn’t have what it takes, based on her recent half-assery, and it doesn’t seem like she has a shot. But who knows? [NY Times]

A Democratic lobbyist has been convicted of bribing Kentucky’s No. 2 law enforcement officer in a case voters are likely to see in political ads for next year’s race for governor. [H-L]

In the days and weeks following the suicides of celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain and handbag designer Kate Spade, a chorus of social media users urged people with depression to not be “afraid” to ask for help. But for most Americans, fear isn’t the thing that stands in the way of therapy. It’s having no one to turn to. [HuffPo]

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Greg Fischer Is An Out-Of-Touch Elitist

A veteran lobbyist says his multiple cash payments to a high-ranking state official were loans between friends and not bribes meant to maintain a lucrative state contract for his corporate client. [H-L]

America’s largest shelter for migrant children looks more like a jail than a safe space for kids. On Wednesday, journalists were allowed inside the former Walmart store in Brownsville, Texas, now filled with more than 1,400 boys ages 10 to 17, and their reports are harrowing. [HuffPo]

A Louisville civil rights leader revealed Thursday that one of the secret guests that Mayor Greg Fischer spent $109,000 to entertain during Kentucky Derby week was the president of the National Urban League. [C-J/AKN]

A major construction company owned by the Chinese government was awarded another contract this week to work on the Trump golf club development in Dubai, further raising questions about potential conflicts of interest between Donald Trump’s presidency and his vast real estate empire. [McClatchy]

Kentucky ranks 48th for seniors’ health in the most recent America’s Health Rankings Report — a potential source of great concern, since the senior population in Kentucky, and the rest of the nation, is only growing larger. Only Mississippi and Louisiana ranked worse than Kentucky. [Richmond Register]

“The economy,” Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell declared this week, “is doing very well.” Yet the numbers that collectively sketch a picture of a vibrant economy don’t reflect reality for a range of Americans who still feel far from financially secure even nine years into an economic expansion. From drivers paying more for gas and families bearing heavier child care costs to workers still awaiting decent pay raises and couples struggling to afford a home, people throughout the economy are straining to succeed despite the economy’s gains. [AP]

Greenup County recently approved a $13.9 million budget for fiscal year 2018-2019, which is less than the prior year. [Ashland Independent]

Donald Trump’s former election campaign manager, Paul Manafort, was sent to jail pending trial on Friday after being charged with witness tampering, the latest episode in his long fall from grace. [Reuters]

Mark Filburn had a fairly simple message about preventing school shootings for the Interim Joint Education Committee Monday. [Ronnie Ellis]

Only a few months ago, the global economy appeared to be humming, with all major nations growing in unison. Now, the world’s fortunes are imperiled by an unfolding trade war. [NY Times]

Tourist spending in Barren County continues to increase, as it climbed from $70.1 million in 2013 to $97 million in 2017. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The actions of a Customs and Border Protection agent who confronted a reporter covering national security issues about her confidential sources are being examined by the CBP’s Office of Professional Responsibility, the agency said in a statement Tuesday. [WaPo]

More people need to be screaming, “FUCK MATT BEVIN!” at every opportunity. A federal judge says he hopes to rule by July 1 on whether Kentucky can carry out its controversial overhaul of the state’s Medicaid program that will require some recipients to find jobs, volunteer or lose their benefits. [H-L]

Fuck that orange piece of shit. Are you looking for more substance to Donald Trump’s vague claim that North Korea “is no longer a nuclear threat”? So was CBS News correspondent Weijia Jiang as she jostled with other reporters outside the White House Friday morning trying to get in a question with the president. [HuffPo]

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