Bevin Drags KY Health Into Dark Ages

As Gov. Matt Bevin prepares to remake Kentucky’s Medicaid program, a new national survey shows what’s at stake: gains in insurance coverage matched only by one other state. [H-L]

American schools are hotbeds for racial discrimination, according to a preliminary report from a group of United Nations experts. [HuffPo]

Former U.S. Sen. Marlow W. Cook, a leader of the Republican renaissance in Louisville and Jefferson County during the 1960s, has died. [C-J/AKN]

Every day in America more than 50 people die from an overdose of prescription pain medication. Some people who start out abusing pain pills later turn to heroin, which claims another 29 lives each day. [NPR]

These are the candidates who have filled for city commissioner in Hazard. [Hazard Herald]

Presidential candidate Donald Trump has called for a new election in Iowa, accusing the Republican winner, Ted Cruz, of fraud. [BBC]

Jim Ramsey knows his days at the University of Louisville are numbered. [Business First]

In the lead-up to Donald Trump’s loss in Iowa, staffers sought additional funding for campaign infrastructure and were denied. [Politico]

WARNING! RIDICULOUS AUTOPLAY VIDEO! The Creation Museum wants Boone County’s blessing for an expansion. Leaders of the museum’ dedicated to a literal interpretation of the Bible wants to nearly triple its exhibit space over the next three years. [Cincinnasti.com]

The U.S. Justice Department is considering legal changes to combat what it sees as a rising threat from domestic anti-government extremists, senior officials told Reuters, even as it steps up efforts to stop Islamic State-inspired attacks at home. [Reuters]

What does 100 days of school mean to White Hall Elementary School second grade students? That in 74 more days, they will be third graders, said teacher Susan Huntzinger. [Richmond Register]

The Des Moines Register is calling for a “complete audit” of the Iowa Democratic caucuses in light of concerns by Bernie Sanders about the razor-thin margin. [The Hill]

A proposal in Congress would provide $1 billion for mine reclamation projects in Eastern Kentucky and other areas grappling with a sharp downturn in coal jobs. [H-L]

Republican presidential candidate Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) slammed President Barack Obama’s visit to a mosque on Wednesday, during which the president denounced anti-Muslim rhetoric, for “pitting people against each other.” [HuffPo]

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Rand Paul’s Jalopy Putters Along

More Republican dollars are flowing into Kentucky to help GOP candidates in the four special House elections on March 8. [H-L]

President Barack Obama has said that a college degree “has never been more valuable.” But if you borrow to finance your degree, the immediate returns are the lowest they’ve been in at least a generation, new data show. [HuffPo]

Local governments in Kentucky can increase the minimum wage, but a federal judge ruled Wednesday that they can’t ban labor unions from requiring employees to join them. [C-J/AKN]

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders’ campaign has reportedly raised $3 million since Monday night’s Iowa caucuses. [The Hill]

Marlow Cook may forever be remembered by Louisvillians as the Jefferson County Executive who purchased the Belle of Louisville, but I remember him not only as my first boss, but also as someone who directly and significantly shaped my life and the lives of so many in public life [John Yarmuth]

Global equity markets rose on Thursday as diminished expectations of U.S. interest rate hikes this year pushed the dollar lower, which in turned boosted the prices of commodities. [Reuters]

The more we learn about Jamie Comer’s hemp-related shenanigans, the more disappointed we all become. Here’s hoping his nonsense doesn’t impact the overall industry. [Page One]

In internal memos, groups opposing tighter state campaign finance rules coach their local supporters on how to battle disclosure of political donors. [ProPublica]

A new study shows that Kentucky and Arkansas had the sharpest decline in the percentage of adult residents without health insurance from 2013 to 2015. [Business First]

Rand Paul was hustling to a TV hit on Fox News when security officials on hand stopped him. You’ll love the delusional reaction from Doug Stafford. [Politico]

Efforts by the Harlan County School District to replace Wallins elementary with a new facility received a boost when the board of education submitted plans that put that project at the top of its list of needs. [Harlan Daily Enterprise]

There’s still a long way to go until November’s US presidential election. But it’s not too early to look at the possible presidential administrations of some of the leading candidates. [BBC]

Cheers, Kentucky: Bourbon and American whiskey sales in the United States were up 7.8 percent to $2.9 billion in 2015, according to figures released Tuesday morning by the Distilled Spirits Council of the U.S. Looking at exports, sales of American whiskey were up 4 percent by volume, although the value fell 2.7 percent to about $1 billion, putting total sales of American whiskey at just less than $4 billion for 2015. [H-L]

Not all polluters are created equal. Just five percent of industrial polluters account for 90 percent of toxic emissions in the United States, according to a new study published in the journal Environmental Research Letters last week. [HuffPo]

Do You Still Have A Sad For Lil Rand?

You can thank Kentucky Democrats for allowing this informed consent nonsense to happen. Way to go, Democrats! Who you gonna attack and defame now that you’ve alienated everybody? [H-L]

Rand Paul (R-Cookie Tree) is suspending his presidential campaign, Politico and CNN reported Wednesday. “It’s been an incredible honor to run a principled campaign for the White House. Today, I will end where I began, ready and willing to fight for the cause of Liberty,” the senator said in a statement on Wednesday, following his fifth place finish in the Iowa caucuses. [HuffPo]

Louisville had the sharpest increase of any U.S. city in terms of residents age 65 or older who are scrapping by to pay their rent, according to findings released Monday by a national affordable housing group. [C-J/AKN]

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) head Gina McCarthy said Michigan state officials misled her agency in the run-up to Flint’s lead contamination crisis. [The Hill]

Allie Secor, manager of the Community Recycling Center, said she plans to retire in June. In a recent meeting of the recycling center board, one idea that was mentioned was for her replacement to be an employee of the city, which would mean adding a benefits package in order to attract qualified candidates. [The Morehead News]

The lawyers who enable an abusive business model for collecting consumer debts are now on the hook for their clients’ screwups. [ThinkProgress]

The 2014 tax audit for Metcalfe County Sheriff Rondal Shirley was released Monday by state auditor Mike Harmon. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Republican Senator Rand Paul (R-Cookie Tree) has dropped out of the race for US president after a disappointing fifth place finish in the Iowa caucuses. [BBC]

Peoples Bancorp Foundation, a non-profit corporation formed to make donations in Peoples Bank market areas, recently awarded $3,000 to Russell Independent Schools Endowment Foundation, Inc. [Ashland Independent]

The U.S. House of Representatives has subpoenaed the former Midwest chief of the Environmental Protection Agency over the Flint, Michigan, drinking water crisis, Representative Jason Chaffetz said on Wednesday. [Reuters]

Main Street and High Street in downtown Hazard were closed to traffic on the morning of Jan. 28, as a Kentucky State Police dog sniffed through the area in search of possible explosives. [Hazard Herald]

The United States is still lagging the world in the rollout of broadband. Look at the map and you’ll hate people like Brett Guthrie, Jim Waters and anyone associated with them even more than you already do. You’ll rage against just about any telecom-tied lobbyist you can think of after seeing it. Disgusting. [The Register]

When Benjamin Harrison moved from Indianapolis to Washington in 1889 to become the nation’s 23rd president, the White House kitchen steward hired a French chef to prepare meals for the new president and his guests. [Tom Eblen]

Jared Fox, 28, knows first-hand about the perils of intolerance. Just two years ago, when Fox was visiting his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio, from New York, he was brutally attacked by a group of teenagers. They beat him, stole his belongings and called him anti-gay slurs. He suffered bruises all over his body. [HuffPo]

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Everybody Has A Sad For Rand Paul

Rand Paul (R-Cookie Tree) of Kentucky dropped out of the 2016 presidential race Wednesday after a fifth-place finish in the Iowa Republican caucus two days earlier. [H-L]

Justice Clarence Thomas will soon celebrate 10 years of not speaking during oral arguments at the Supreme Court. [HuffPo]

Woo, let’s gamble ouselves to failure! A bipartisan group of state senators called on Tuesday morning for expanded gambling in Kentucky to support Kentucky’s retirement systems. [C-J/AKN]

Rand Paul (R-Cookie Tree) is suspending his campaign and dropping out of the presidential race. [The Hill]

If you missed it, some disgusting stuff has gone on in Shelby County for several years. But legal action has been taken to hold people accountable for atrocious animal abuse and torture. [Page One]

U.S. armed forces leaders said on Tuesday that women should be required to register for the military draft, along with men, as the military moves toward integrating them fully into combat positions. [Reuters]

health
You can’t fix stupid in Frankfort. The State Senate voted to defund Planned Parenthood. Because the entire body is filled with mouth-breathers who believe everything that scares them on Fox News. [WFPL]

“But unlike Bill Murray’s character…Republican leaders are either willfully ignorant or intentionally wasting everyone’s time.” [ThinkProgress]

The Healthy Choices, Healthy Communities coalition is requesting the assistance of community residence in determining the region’s most pressing health concerns. [Ashland Independent]

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul (R-Cookie Tree) is suspending his campaign for president after a disappointing finish in Iowa, turning his focus now to his Senate re-election bid. [NPR]

Police found a methamphetamine pipe inside a breakfast biscuit after stopping a car at the Berea Walmart for excessive window tint on Thursday. [Richmond Register]

Indigenous tribes, timber firms and environmental groups in western Canada have welcomed a deal to protect one of the world’s largest remaining tracts of temperate rainforest. [BBC]

This might be one of the most terrifying Groundhog Day-related things we’ve ever seen. [H-L]

Real estate mogul Donald Trump accused Ted Cruz of fraud on Wednesday, claiming the Texas senator “stole” the Iowa caucuses and arguing that “either a new election should take place or Cruz results nullified.” [HuffPo]

Ashland Leads The Way On EKY Health

Kentucky Education Commissioner Stephen Pruitt says that if Gov. Matt Bevin’s proposed budget is approved by the General Assembly, the Department of Education will face $72 million in reductions over the next two years. [H-L]

More than a few curiosities, oddities and abnormalities arose when presidential campaigns and super PACs filed their 2015 end-of-year campaign finance disclosures Sunday night. [HuffPo]

As Planned Parenthood turns 100, officials with the regional branch met with reporters Monday to reaffirm their commitment to serving Kentucky and Indiana amid a controversy over its proposed abortion services. [C-J/AKN]

The chairman of Iowa’s Democratic party is declaring Hillary Clinton the caucus winner, despite the razor-slim margin separating her from Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). [The Hill]

Ruh ro, there’s a whole buncha drama in Morehead these days! Tensions were high for a portion of Friday’s special called work session of Morehead City Council. [The Morehead News]

Attorneys for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump are trying to stop Elizabeth Mae Davidson, the woman accusing the Trump campaign of gender discrimination, from speaking publicly about her allegations. [ThinkProgress]

Legislation that would prohibit the General Assembly from diverting state lottery funds away from Kentucky’s need- and merit-based scholarship programs has cleared a House committee. [Press Release]

Bernie Sanders’ campaign plane departed from Des Moines amid uncertainty over who exactly won the Iowa caucuses, but it didn’t matter to the candidate or his staff. [Politico]

Cave Country Trails Initiative board of directors discussed at their meeting Thursday night upcoming workshops that will take place in surrounding communities. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Astronomers have discovered the largest known solar system, consisting of a large planet that takes nearly a million years to orbit its star. [BBC]

Ashland is once again leading on the health care front in Eastern Kentucky. The Ashland-Boyd County Health Department is planning a needle-exchange program to prevent the further spread of Hepatitis C in the area, epidemiologist Kristy Bolen said. [Ashland Independent]

Companies and scientists are racing to create a Zika vaccine as concern grows over the mosquito-borne virus that has been linked to severe birth defects and is spreading quickly through the Americas. [Reuters]

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin wants state colleges and universities to produce more electrical engineers and less French literature scholars. [H-L]

The FBI is joining a U.S. investigation into Flint, Michigan’s water contamination crisis, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit said on Tuesday. [HuffPo]

Coal Continues To Die In Kentucky

Kentucky saw a continued steep drop in coal production and jobs in 2015, according to a report released Monday by the Kentucky Energy and Environmental Cabinet.H-L]

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) was not happy Monday when her interview with NBC’s “Today” anchors Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie veered away from the topic of the Iowa caucuses and toward her son’s recent arrest. [HuffPo]

Kentucky coal mines produced their lowest tonnage in 62 years, according to a new report from the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet. [C-J/AKN]

American and British intelligence secretly tapped into live video feeds from Israeli drones and fighter jets, monitoring military operations in Gaza, watching for a potential strike against Iran, and keeping tabs on the drone technology Israel exports around the world. Under a classified program code-named “Anarchist,” the U.K.’s Government Communications Headquarters, or GCHQ, working with the National Security Agency, systematically targeted Israeli drones from a mountaintop on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus. [The Intercept]

Ten healthcare systems across the Commonwealth have joined together in an effort to better healthcare for Kentuckians. [Richmond Register]

A new analysis suggests that human-caused climate change may be having a much bigger impact on East Coast superstorms than we thought. A global slowdown in crucial Atlantic Ocean currents — caused by global warming — appears to be supercharging both precipitation and storm surge. [ThinkProgress]

Due to budget constraints, the U.S. Forest Service’s Cumberland Ranger District is taking a hard look at some of the federal roads in the Daniel Boone National Forest. [The Morehead News]

Increasing crop yields could help meet the rising global demand for more food while sparing land to protect biodiversity, a study has suggested. [BBC]

In November’s election for the Glasgow City Council, six newcomers will be competing against 11 incumbents for 12 nonpartisan seats. [Glasgow Daily Times]

In my early years as a police reporter, I often pulled up to a crime scene minutes before the homicide detectives arrived. Too many times to count I’d find a young black man my age or younger dead with a halo of blood or brain matter splashed on the pavement. Often there were shell casings sprinkled around freshly fallen bodies. [NY Times]

The three school districts in Greenup County will offer free ACT preparation sessions Feb. 13 to sophomores, juniors and seniors in all three districts. [Ashland Independent]

From the Department of Things Ken Ham Wouldn’t Understand… The mystery behind the extinction of a huge flightless bird called Genyornis that flourished in the grasslands and woodlands of prehistoric Australia may have been solved, with burned eggshells as the clue and people as the culprits. [Reuters]

Out-of-state money is coming into Kentucky for the four special state House elections on March 8. [H-L]

News of the poisoned water crisis in Flint has reached a wide audience around the world. [HuffPo]