New Republicanism Means Harming Refugees

More than 25,000 acres of forest in Eastern Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia will be preserved in coming years thanks to a nearly $5 million federal conservation grant, federal officials announced Friday. [H-L]

An increasing number of new laws across the United States make it a crime to be homeless. But these laws don’t actually manage to get people off the streets ― they just perpetuate the cycle of homelessness, experts say. [HuffPo]

More than 200 hours of intercepted phone call recordings have been submitted as evidence in a federal investigation into a pay-for-play scheme involving Louisville basketball recruits, according to court documents. [C-J/AKN]

The U.S. State Department has told refugee agencies it will sharply pare back the number of offices across the country authorized to resettle people in 2018 as Donald Trump cuts the number of refugees allowed into the United States. [Reuters]

Matt Bevin conceded Thursday that it is “logistically” impossible to hold a special session before the end of the year to tackle pension reform. [Ronnie Ellis]

The rate of life-threatening complications for new mothers in the U.S. has more than doubled in two decades due to pre-existing conditions, medical errors and unequal access to care. [ProPublica]

When Dominic and Rico Castle pushed their shopping cart through the Walmart lobby Wednesday, with the promise of $400 to fill it with Christmas plunder, one would assume the brothers would take the shortest route to the toy department. [Ashland Independent]

The United Nations Security Council imposed new sanctions on North Korea on Friday that significantly choke off new fuel supplies and order North Koreans working overseas to return home within two years, in what may prove the last test of whether any amount of economic pressure can force it to reverse course on its nuclear program. [NY Times]

Kentucky’s Democratic Attorney General believes the state’s opioid epidemic is the “single greatest challenge facing Kentucky” and claims the administration of Gov. Matt Bevin is hampering his efforts to combat the scourge. [Ronnie Ellis]

US life expectancy fell last year for a second year running for the first time in more than half a century, reportedly driven by the worsening opioid crisis. Life expectancy in 2016 fell 0.1 years to 78.6, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. [BBC]

When discussing Glasgow Independent Schools’ Comprehensive District Improvement Plan with the GIS Board of Education, GIS Instructional Supervisor Michelle Tinsley and GIS Superintendent Keith Hale said everyone has bought in to the plan. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Officials at the USDA received a detailed formal complaint earlier this year regarding Aurora Organic Dairy, one of the nation’s largest producers of organic milk. [WaPo]

A national science panel might use donations to finish a study that the Trump Administration halted on whether people face greater health risks from living near surface coal mines in Central Appalachia, including Eastern Kentucky. [H-L]

This is how insanely out-of-touch these people are. It’s so bizarre-o it’s offensive. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

I Guess Linda Gorton Is Big News?

This is horrifying and makes it scary to think about anyone having kids. The Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure has reprimanded a doctor whose pediatric residency at the University of Kentucky was terminated after he allegedly viewed child pornography during a work shift. [H-L]

The average American life expectancy ticked downward for the second straight year in 2016, on the back of surging drug overdose deaths, according to data released Thursday by the National Center for Health Statistics at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And while the nation hasn’t experienced a back-to-back drop in life expectancy since the 1960s, the CDC says the opioid crisis is shaping up to extend this decline for a third consecutive year, a milestone that hasn’t been seen since the Spanish flu pandemic in 1918. [HuffPo]

Former state Rep. Linda Belcher rejected a suggestion by the widow of Rep. Dan Johnson that she participated in an effort by liberal organizations to destroy Johnson. [C-J/AKN]

The Trump administration’s consideration of a wage freeze for federal employees is one piece of a renewed multifront Republican push to shrink those workers’ pay, benefits and workforce. [WaPo]

Members of the Barren County Board of Education received the results of the school district’s annual financial audit during Thursday night’s meeting. They also heard updates on construction at the Career and Technical Education facility at the Trojan Trail campus. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Don McGahn was looking at whether the national security advisor violated federal laws just days after Trump moved into the White House. [Foreign Policy]

Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes is reminding registered voters who wish to vote in another party’s May 2018 Primary Election or be a candidate as a member of another political party in the 2018 elections that they must change their registration no later than Dec. 31. [The Morehead News]

A second U.S. judge on Thursday blocked Donald Trump’s administration from enforcing new rules that undermine an Obamacare requirement for employers to provide insurance that covers women’s birth control. [Reuters]

Community Assistance & Referral Services (CAReS) is currently seeking monetary donations to offset the cost of purchases made to cover unreturned Giving Tree items. [Ashland Independent]

ALIENS!!!!!!!1!! [NY Times]

Five Madison County inmates were able to see their children visit with Santa and open Christmas gifts Saturday thanks in large part to the work of the Glover Foundation. [Richmond Register]

The United Nations on Thursday delivered a stinging rebuke of Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, casting an overwhelming vote condemning the move and calling on the U.S. to withdraw the decision. [The Hill]

Former Vice Mayor Linda Gorton announced Tuesday that she will enter the race for mayor. [H-L]

Republicans are looting the store, taking everything they can grab off the shelves, anticipating the demise of Donald Trump as progressive energy explodes. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

There’s Just Too Much News Lately

Authorities say a police officer in western Kentucky is facing official misconduct charges after agreeing not to arrest a woman if she would have sex with him. [H-L]

Earlier this year, House Democrats accused retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn of secretly lobbying for a huge Middle East nuclear power deal while serving as Donald Trump’s national security adviser. New details have emerged this week of just how far Flynn’s alleged lobbying effort might’ve gone. [HuffPo]

While Bernie Sanders is right about the Republican tax “plan”? He’s the most unexciting, typical, talk-down-to-you political jackass I can imagine to be stumping against it. A wealthy white guy with a history of talking down his nose at the LGBT community and people of color? Speaking for workers and progressives? Get the fuck outta here with that bullshit. [C-J/AKN]

The U.S. Supreme Court dealt a setback on Monday to gun rights proponents including the National Rifle Association, refusing to hear a challenge to Maryland’s 2013 state ban on assault weapons enacted after a Connecticut school massacre. [Reuters]

Sustainable Berea began this week by making large seed donation to the Madison County Seed Library located inside the Madison County Public Library locations Monday morning. [Richmond Register]

A disturbing report released [this week] by researchers at the prestigious Colegio de Mexico provides new details about a 2011 massacre in Allende, a quiet Mexican ranching town less than an hour’s drive from the United States, and suggests that many more people were killed in the incident than estimated by Mexican authorities. The report’s authors also repeatedly cite an investigation of the incident by ProPublica and National Geographic in calling for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration to provide information about its role in triggering the killing spree. [ProPublica]

The City of Ashland received two marks in an audit of its financial statement, including a failure to competitively bid two purchases. [Ashland Independent]

Really, you can’t fix this kind of corrupt stupidity. To think people like Scott Jennings and alleged domestic violence perpetrator Jamie Comer are keen on showing their extreme ignorance by openly and proudly supporting him. Won’t it be sad when their children grow up to discover how shitty their parents are? [NY Times]

What on earth??? How was the treasurer getting away with not attending all meetings?! Glasgow’s city treasurer may be required to attend all city council meetings. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Donald Trump’s Twitter account has retweeted three inflammatory anti-Muslim videos from a British far-right group. [BBC]

The state sets aside 15.8 percent less for per public school student than it did in 2008 — the third largest drop in the nation, behind Oklahoma and Texas. [WFPL]

The missile logged a longer flight time than any of its predecessors and went farther into the atmosphere than ever before, reaching a height of 2,800 miles, 10 times higher than the International Space Station. [WaPo]

A former University of Kentucky student who survived an attack from a notorious serial killer is in Kentucky this week to talk about her new memoir. [H-L]

The Air Force has discovered “several dozen” cases in which it failed to report convictions of service members to the national background check database used for gun sales. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

Louisville Politicians Hate Poor People – Especially If They’re Black

Kentucky’s legislature needs billions of dollars to pay down the state’s unfunded pension liabilities. As it happens, Kentucky essentially gives away billions of dollars every year through what are called “tax expenditures.” [John Cheves]

The deputy director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau sued the Trump administration on Sunday to block the president’s appointment of Mick Mulvaney as interim director of the agency. [HuffPo]

Scott Reed, like most Kentucky Republicans, is a racist bigot. Their racism is especially easy to spot in Louisville because they freak out when low incomes are involved. [C-J/AKN]

Donald Trump thinks he’s accomplished more than FDR. There are Kentucky Republicans that believe him. [The Hill]

Discussion of the city’s purchase of electric power again dominated Tuesday’s meeting of the Berea City Council. [Richmond Register]

The Freedom of Information Act is fundamental to investigative journalism. If the Freedom of Information Act were a person, who would it be? That’s a real question I asked our newsroom this week, because that’s the kind of thing I randomly think about. [ProPublica]

A search warrant executed by the Boyd County Sheriff’s Department Tuesday resulted in four arrests and the seizing of over 50 grams of Crystal Methamphetamine, money and drug paraphernalia. [Ashland Independent]

Tens of thousands of people wanted by law enforcement officials have been removed this year from the FBI criminal background check database that prohibits fugitives from justice from buying guns. [WaPo]

The Kentucky State Police began accepting donations for their eighth annual “Cram The Cruiser” holiday food drive on Nov. 22. [The Morehead News]

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday left in place a Nebraska law that prohibits picketing near funerals after it was challenged by a Kansas church known for anti-gay protests. [Reuters]

A bill moving through Congress aims to simplify the national suicide hotline — a move that advocates say is necessary. But with that could come an increased call volume at crisis centers, and those same advocates caution additional funding will be needed to handle all the calls at money-strapped crisis centers. [WFPL]

He’s a racist bigot. Donald Trump has mocked a political rival as Pocahontas – as he welcomed Native Americans to the White House. [BBC]

A juvenile is suspected of making a threat on social media about violence this week at Madison Central High School, according to Kentucky State Police. [H-L]

Robert Jay Lifton has spent his life trying to understand some of the most unfathomable milestones of the 20th century. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

Kentucky Republicans Are So Nasty They Refuse To Cooperate In The Latest Investigation

***Care about the future of Kentucky? Help us cover FOIA and open records request fees relating to Matt Bevin and Jamie Comer.*** [CLICK HERE]

Kaylee Lay, who is 5, was so happy to see the bookmobile pull up in front of her house in McCreary County recently that she ran outside with no shoes, then reached up for her mother to carry her over the rough ground. [H-L]

Republican senators on Sunday continued to distance themselves from alleged sexual predator Roy Moore, while Donald Trump reiterated his implicit support of the Alabama GOP Senate candidate in a pair of tweets that morning. [HuffPo]

These people deserve to be physically dragged into the street and forced to comply. Enough of this nonsense. If you’re protecting Jeff Hoover? I’ll follow you for the rest of your life and dig into your shenanigans. Mark my words. You will not get away with this. Proof: My decade of uncovering that Republicans and Democrats alike never wanted me to uncover. Hold on tight. Some current and former legislative staff members have refused to cooperate with the House majority leadership’s investigation into circumstances surrounding former Speaker Jeff Hoover’s confidential settlement of a sexual harassment complaint last month. [C-J/AKN]

The Nationalist’s Delusion. Trump’s supporters backed a time-honored American political tradition, disavowing racism while promising to enact a broad agenda of discrimination. [The Atlantic]

The Richmond Police Department is calling upon the generous nature of the season, and the community, to help it “Feed the Families” this holiday. [Richmond Register]

It’s always a long con with Rand Paul. That’s why the story from him has repeatedly changed. It’s also why his wife, with her Matt Bevin crazy eyes, is foaming at the mouth with multiple stories. [CNN]

The City of Ashland received two marks in an audit of its financial statement, including a failure to competitively bid two purchases. [Ashland Independent]

BuzzFeed News has uncovered a new network of suspected Twitter propaganda accounts – sharing messages about Brexit, Donald Trump, and Angela Merkel – that have close connections to the Russian-linked bot accounts identified by the social media platform in its evidence to the US Congress. [BuzzFeed]

Kentucky Power has reached a settlement agreement with the majority of groups that are part of its base rate review filed with the Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC). The settlement, filed Wednesday, is not final until approved by the PSC. [The Morehead News]

Lawyers for former national security adviser Michael Flynn have halted communications with Donald Trump’s legal team, a potentially critical step in the probe into contacts between Trump’s election campaign and Russia, sources familiar with the investigation said on Friday. [Reuters]

Louisville Metro government’s Center for Health Equity is expected to release the third edition of the center’s Health Equity report this week. This year, the report will examine data from several factors like the city’s food systems, employment, environment and transportation, and their connections to health outcomes in Louisville. [WFPL]

Dismantling the State Department is dumb as hell. Choking the Foreign Service? Really? Fucking idiots. Republicans supporting this are all kinds of awful. Of all the State Department employees who might have been vulnerable in the staff reductions that Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson has initiated as he reshapes the department, the one person who seemed least likely to be a target was the chief of security, Bill A. Miller. [NY Times]

Blue Equity, a Louisville-based private equity firm controlled by Jonathan Blue, announced Monday the purchase of Liquor Barn from publicly traded Liquor Stores N.A. of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, for a reported $26 million. [H-L]

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson isn’t sending a top delegation to accompany Ivanka Trump to a business summit in India because he doesn’t want to promote her on the world stage, CNN reported. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

Walls Are Closing In On Republicans

There was more sophistication in my last b.m. than Matt Bevin has ever encountered in his entire life. [H-L]

There may have been a brief moment Monday morning when the White House thought the week wouldn’t be so bad. The federal grand jury indictment unsealed against Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, and his longtime associate Rick Gates, dealt with much of their lobbying work before the 2016 election. [HuffPo]

Dealing a major blow to efforts to curb supposedly frivolous malpractice claims, a judge has struck down a new Kentucky law creating medical review panels to screen such cases before they go to trial. New Republicans are the party of restricting your constitutional rights. [C-J/AKN]

Consider, if you will, these two indisputable facts. First, the United States is today more or less permanently engaged in hostilities in not one faraway place, but at least seven. Second, the vast majority of the American people could not care less. [Bill Moyers]

The city of Ashland is interviewing six candidates for its new top communications job after it received 20 applications. [Ashland Independent]

Here’s where a lot of that laundered money went. You’ll want to check the chart out. [CNBC]

The Democratic Minority Leader in the Kentucky House of Representatives still doesn’t know what’s in a proposed Republican measure to alter the benefit structure and strengthen financially the state’s public pension plans. [Ronnie Ellis]

Manafort’s business partner remained a key player in Trumpworld long after Manafort himself was forced out of the campaign over concerns about his work abroad. [TPM]

Matt Bevin began his sales pitch for pension reform Monday before 300 attending a public policy luncheon sponsored by Commerce Lexington. But his pitch reflected what he has said previously about the bill released Friday which would move most state employees into 401(a), defined contribution plans. [More Ronnie Ellis]

Heh. These people should visit Frankfort sometime. [NY Times]

Some Louisville residents in need of help with heating bills can now apply for aid through the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program – or LIHEAP. [WFPL]

To understand what the Trump administration faces as it tries to sharpen focus on the opioid epidemic, consider the “diseases of despair” that have hobbled the Appalachian region for the past two decades. [WaPo]

Get rekt, Ralph Alvarado! A new law aimed at limiting medical malpractice lawsuits in Kentucky is unconstitutional, Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd ruled Monday. [H-L]

In an impassioned speech Saturday, Hillary Clinton laid into the Trump administration for its stance on LGBTQ rights, acknowledging that “tough battles” lie ahead for the queer community and other minority groups. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

Hahaha. Rick Pitino. Hahahahahahaha.

Sweeping changes recommended for Kentucky’s public pension systems would cost taxpayers and public employees more money while making public employment far less attractive to future generations, according to a report released Monday. [John Cheves]

Donald Trump joked that Vice President Mike Pence “wants to hang” all gay people, according to a profile of Pence published in The New Yorker on Monday. [HuffPo]

Donald Trump’s decision late Thursday to cancel federal payments that help low-income people with costs not covered by their health insurance has sent shock waves through Kentucky, where more than 40,000 people benefit from such assistance. [C-J/AKN]

PEE ALERT! It’s November 2013 and you’re Donald Trump. By your standards it’s a normal weekend, which means you’re sitting in the presidential suite of the Moscow Ritz Carlton fuming at Barack Obama. In part you’re fuming because you’re very racist, and in part you’re fuming because Obama publicly humiliated you more than two years ago. If you were more self-aware than a mosquito, you’d realize these were heavily intertwined sources of aggrievement. [Crooked]

A grandmother in the front passenger seat was shot and killed by youths playing with an old handgun in the back seat of the car as they drove home from church. A grandson driving the car was not injured. [Ashland Independent]

Hey, Louisville and Lexington councils: get on this. In a sweeping change to Portland housing policy, City Commissioner Chloe Eudaly announced Sunday that the city will allow overnight RV camping and tiny homes on wheels, as long as they’re parked on private property. [Willamette Week]

It’s time once again to ask churches, businesses, and individuals in the community to participate in the preparation of Thanksgiving food baskets for those in need. [The Morehead News]

Eighteen U.S. states sued Donald Trump’s administration on Friday to stop him from scrapping a key component of Obamacare, subsidies to insurers that help millions of low-income people pay medical expenses, even as Trump invited Democratic leaders to negotiate a deal. [Reuters]

The Glasgow Water Co. received “the standard clean, unqualified auditor’s report,” as certified public accountant Brent Billingsley put it at Thursday’s regular meeting of the Glasgow Water and Sewer Commission. [Glasgow Daily Times]

When you looked up, you could once see nothing but the lush, emerald canopy of tabonuco and sierra palm trees covering El Yunque National Forest. [NY Times]

Get rekt, Rick. The board that oversees athletics at the University of Louisville has unanimously voted to fire men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino. [WFPL]

Democrats accused Trump of trying to sabotage the nation’s health-care system through his decision to halt payments to insurers meant to shore up the system, while Republicans countered Sunday that Trump is just pushing for a hard bargain. [WaPo]

A rock fall that killed an employee at a Whitley County surface coal mine in March happened after the operator failed to identify and correct hazardous conditions, according to a federal report. [H-L]

In Midtown Manhattan, in a building that also hosts a dermatologist, a sports medicine doctor and a package tour operator, two North Korean diplomats run a backchannel line of communication to U.S. officials in Washington. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]