Hold On To Your Wigs Over SCOTUS

Kentucky and our nation are in an era when representative democracy is threatened by huge amounts of special-interest money, one-party rule and chief executives who act like they were elected emperors. The rule of law, the independent judiciary and the free press are under attack. So is government transparency. [Tom Eblen]

Former and current employees at a federal prison in California that began receiving a group of 1,000 immigration detainees on June 8 are warning that poor medical conditions in the prison in the Mojave Desert complex will endanger detainees, as well as the inmates and staff who are already at risk. [HuffPo]

Rand Paul is suing his neighbor turned attacker for medical costs and attorney fees relating to an incident for when he was tackled while mowing his lawn last year. [C-J/AKN]

As the U.S. attempts to reunite migrant families, children will bear the burden of helping to identify who and where their parents are. The 6-year-old girl heard asking to call her aunt on an audio recording from a detention facility this week has an advantage. [ProPublica]

Students at Eastern Kentucky University will be paying a bit more per credit hour starting this fall thanks to an asset preservation fee approved Monday during a Board of Regents meeting. [Richmond Register]

A Republican federal trial judge held on Thursday that the entire Consumer Financial Protection Bureau — all of it — must cease to exist. Judge Loretta Preska’s decision on this matter can barely even be described as an “opinion” because she devotes less than two pages of analysis to this question before proclaiming that a federal agency must be simply wiped away. [ThinkProgress]

Cheryl Spriggs, Denise Rodgers and John Mayhew were each Democrats at one point in their lives. And then they lost the ability to reason and now love an orange racist. [Ashland Independent]

Justice Anthony M. Kennedy announced on Wednesday that he would retire, setting the stage for a furious fight over the future direction of the Supreme Court. [NY Times]

Kerry Dilley was elected by his fellow school board members to be the new chairperson for the Barren County Schools Board of Education on Monday morning during a special-called meeting. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The original source for Trump’s claim of 63,000 immigrant murders? Bad data from Steve King in 2006. [WaPo]

As the opioid epidemic continues and addiction experts push for more medication-assisted treatment, a controversial national nonprofit funded by drug companies is setting up shop in Kentucky. [WFPL]

The U.S. Justice Department on Thursday announced charges against 601 people including doctors and nurses for taking part in healthcare fraud and opioid-related crimes that resulted in more than $2 billion in losses. [Reuters]

Lexington must release information about the city’s surveillance cameras and the policies surrounding their use, a judge ordered last week. [H-L]

A restaurant can turn away a customer for any number of reasons ― from not following a dress code to being incredibly loud and obnoxious. And yes, it can turn away someone who the owner believes lies for a racist president who separates children from their parents at the border and ejects transgender people from the military; it can turn away someone who, by that person’s own choice in her profession, makes people in the establishment, including employees, feel uncomfortable. What a restaurant cannot do, however, is turn away someone because they’re a member of a group the owner doesn’t like or finds offensive or immoral and which is protected under civil rights statutes. That is a violation of the law. [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 Republicans Are The Real Tax-And-Spend Government Nightmares

Tax-and-spend Republicans love to give their wealthy, horse-owning pals tax breaks. While choking the average Kentuckian with massive tax increases on vehicle repairs, veterinary services and ways to stay healthy. If cowards like Chris “Cool With Domestic Violence If It’s My Running Mate” McDaniel and Steve Rudy truly believed in the free market, this taxation would apply across the board and not just to the working class. [H-L]

These are the asylum seekers the new racist US government is turning away. Aracely Martinez Yanez, 33, knows she’s one of the lucky ones. A deep scar that carves a line through her scalp, from crown to cheek, is proof of that fortune. [HuffPo]

Being a black student in Jefferson County Public Schools means you likely won’t get the most experienced teachers in your classrooms. [C-J/AKN]

They cheer when people they’re bigoted against don’t get served in restaurants. White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said on Saturday that she had been asked to leave a Virginia restaurant the night before because she worked for Donald Trump. [Reuters]

Ten Madison County banks have come together to pledge support for the Madison County Community Fund, a charitable endowment established by local citizens to support civic and charitable causes in Madison County. [Richmond Register]

The US Navy is reportedly planning to build sprawling immigrant detention centres on military bases, amid a Trump crackdown at the US-Mexico border. [BBC]

Tiny houses are a big thing these days, and vocational students at Lawrence County High School may get a chance this fall to get in on the trend. [Ashland Independent]

Maybe it’s because they’ve never been worth that much? Visits to Donald Trump’s hotels and resorts by the president and people seeking to influence him have been seen as boons for his business empire, but his real estate business seems to be stagnating. Since he took office, there have been few big property sales for the Trump Organization. Now the president’s company appears to have pulled its most luxurious offering off the market, after it lingered unsold for years. [Mother Jones]

The Housing Authority of Glasgow has the option of converting apartments it now rents through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s public housing program to another HUD program called the Rental Assistance Demonstration program. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The mayor of this Texas border city has been dealing with a crisis. This week, he declared a state of emergency. Drones filled the skies and emergency vehicles raced down the streets. But none of it had anything to do with illegal immigration. It had to do with the weather. [NY Times]

Hundreds of protesters gathered in front of the federal courthouse in downtown Louisville Thursday to voice opposition to the Trump Administration’s treatment of migrant families along the southern border. [WFPL]

Philip G. Alston arrived in Washington last fall on a mission from the United Nations Human Rights Council to document poverty in America. At his first meeting, Alston said he was told by a senior State Department official that his findings may influence the United States’ membership in the human rights body. “A senior official said to me my report could be a factor in whether the U.S. decided or not to stay in the council,” said Alston, U.N. special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, who declined to name the official. “I think I was being sent a message.” [WaPo]

A large portion of a bourbon barrel storage facility at Barton 1792 Distillery in Bardstown collapsed Friday, according to the company. [H-L]

MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough didn’t mince words Friday morning: He called Donald Trump “openly racist” and said that, by extension, so are his supporters. [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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More Koch Crap Comes To Kentucky

Americans for Prosperity, which is backed by the billioanaire(sic) Koch brothers, says it plans ads against Kentucky’s Hal Rogers over ‘wasteful’ spending. [H-L]

The government program meant to place unaccompanied children taken from the U.S.-Mexico border into the care of a parent or sponsor admitted last month it lost nearly 1,500 of them. And it said it isn’t responsible for finding them either. [HuffPo]

Simon Wallace is proud of his barbershop, where he knows the customers by name. Many are from the surrounding blocks and simply walk to his modest shop, just off the corner of 28th Street and Greenwood Avenue in Parkland. [C-J/AKN]

The FBI warned on Friday that Russian computer hackers had compromised hundreds of thousands of home and office routers and could collect user information or shut down network traffic. [Reuters]

When Amy McGrath stepped behind a microphone Tuesday night in Richmond after her eight-point win over Lexington Mayor Jim Gray in the Democratic primary for the Sixth Congressional District, she began her victory speech this way… [Ronnie Ellis]

Seizing on a longtime ambition of many Republicans, Donald Trump on Friday overhauled rules affecting at least two million federal workers, making it easier to fire them and rolling back the workplace role of their unions. [NY Times]

The city of Ashland is aggressively exploring new ways to grow jobs in the city. [Ashland Independent]

In the photo, Gigi Daniel-Zagorites grips the edge of a small bookcase, her tilted head peering over. The bookcase and a cabinet barricade the 13-year-old in one corner of a classroom. Two women sit, backs turned. [WaPo]

In a race decided by less than 200 votes (of 4,447 total) and 4 percent of total voters, Kim Barker-Tabor secured the seat of Rowan County Circuit Court Clerk during the Primary Election Tuesday evening. [The Morehead News]

When Donald Trump’s latest financial disclosure form was released last week, we dropped what we were doing and started digging. [ProPublica]

A majority of the board of directors for Barren-Metcalfe County Emergency Medical Services approved for the fiscal year beginning July 1 a $4.85 million budget – $1.11 million more than the one approved for this year – as it was proposed, with no amendments. [Glasgow Daily Times]

This is the FBI’s standard operating procedure in counterintelligence cases. Although Trump and his defenders have frequently stated that employing informants was illegal and scandalously inappropriate, that’s just one more Trumpian falsehood. [Observer]

A Kentucky school district that has seen four employees charged with child sex offenses in an 18-month span faces new allegations in court, but is trying to reassure parents that student safety is a top priority. [H-L]

It’s literally his policy. Donald Trump has bashed the Democrats for a hugely controversial policy created by his own administration: separating undocumented immigrant children from their parents. [HuffPo]

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Surprise! Trump’s Bad For KY Business

Agence France-Presse reports that Chinese state enterprises will provide $500 million in loans to a development project in Indonesia that will include Trump-branded hotels, residences and golf courses. [QZ]

Eddie Devine voted for Donald Trump because he thought he would be good for American business. Now, he says, the Trump administration’s restrictions on seasonal foreign labor may put him out of business. [Tom Eblen]

Israeli troops shot dead dozens of Palestinian protesters on the Gaza border on Monday as the United States opened its embassy to Israel in Jerusalem, a move that has fueled Palestinian anger and drawn foreign criticism for undermining peace efforts. [HuffPo]

Wondering who the next out-of-stater is to further ruin mainstream media in Kentucky? [C-J/AKN]

Lobbyists who joined the Trump administration and now want to return to their old trade have a problem: Donald Trump said they can’t. But never doubt the ingenuity of the Washington swamp class. At least eight former Trump officials have found ways around the so-called ethics pledge. [ProPublica]

Three-term Kentucky Rep. Jonathan Shell, R-Lancaster, who serves as House Majority Leader, is facing off against Republican candidate and long-time teacher R. Travis Brenda in the May primary for his seat in House district 71. [Richmond Register]

This software millionaire is building the low-tech college of his dreams… in Kentucky. [The Chronicle of Higher Education]

Three candidates for Rowan County Judge-Executive participated in the Primary Candidate Forum held last month at the Morehead Conference Center. [The Morehead News]

Robert Mueller is looking into the curious case of Donald Trump’s record inaugural fundraising. [ThinkProgress]

With a vote of 5-2, the board of directors for Barren-Metcalfe counties’ ambulance service agreed Wednesday to go ahead and hire Taylor, Polson and Company, a certified auditing firm, to conduct a special audit of the ambulance service’s financial records over a nine-month period. [Glasgow Daily Times]

FBI agents working for special counsel Robert Mueller allegedly detained a lawyer with ties to Russia who is closely associated with Joseph Mifsud, the shadowy professor who claimed during the election that Russia had “dirt” on Hillary Clinton. [The Atlantic]

The Boyd County Board of Education named Bill Boblett the district’s new superintendent Thursday. [Ashland Independent]

Kentuckians should probably keep an eye on efforts like this as charters become a thing. Wealthy Americans have been funding U.S. charter schools for years now through their hedge funds, private foundations or personal fortunes, but it turns out that super-rich foreigners are forking over big money to American charters too. Do you think it’s for the kids? Guess again. [WaPo]

No, gambling on ball games won’t help Kentucky’s pension crises. And Julian Carroll’s legislation didn’t go anywhere because he’s an alleged (caught on tape, even!) sexual predator. What a stain on Kentucky. [H-L]

The leaders of a South African group that has referred to apartheid as a “so-called” historical injustice recently toured Washington and met with top members of the U.S. government, including officials at the U.S. Agency for International Development and staffers for Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Turd Burglar). They even bumped into national security adviser John Bolton. [HuffPo]

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Bevin: Too Dumb To Walk & Chew Gum?

The Eastern Kentucky University Board of Regents violated the state open meetings act when it met behind behind closed doors for more than five hours, Attorney General Andy Beshear said. [H-L]

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigators have questioned a Russian oligarch about hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments his company’s US affiliate made to Donald Trump’s personal attorney, Michael Cohen, after the election, according to a source familiar with the matter. [CNN]

Fox News anchor Shepard Smith sharply criticized Donald Trump on Friday for headlining the National Rifle Association convention mere months after he vowed to take action on gun control in the wake of the deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida, in which 17 people died. [HuffPo]

Jefferson County Public Schools could fight a state takeover in court by arguing that the state board of education cannot issue a fair decision because its new members are biased, a lawyer says. Louisville attorney David Tachau, whose practice includes constitutional litigation, said the circumstances leading up to interim Education Commissioner Wayne Lewis’ recommendation for a takeover seem suspect. [C-J/AKN]

Cambridge Analytica used its own database and voter information collected from Facebook and news publishers in its effort to help elect Donald Trump, despite a claim by a top campaign official who has downplayed the company’s role in the election. [The Guardian]

Presidents facing re-election often employ what’s euphemistically called “the Rose Garden Strategy” — events outside the White House which make them look presidential. Congressmen don’t have that luxury, but Kentucky’s Republican Congressman from the 6th District, Andy Barr, gets pretty close. [Ronnie Ellis]

The lobbyist and his wife who rented a condominium to Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt for $50 a night last summer paid a $2,034 fine on Friday for renting the property without the proper license. [The Hill]

Four Democrats and two Republicans are vying to fill the role of Greenup County Sheriff, an office that has been occupied by Democrat Keith Cooper since 1999. Cooper has opted against running for a sixth term. [Ashland Independent]

The U.S. National Security Agency collected 534 million records of phone calls and text messages of Americans last year, more than triple gathered in 2016, a U.S. intelligence agency report released on Friday said. [Reuters]

Harold “Hal” Rogers, U.S. representative for Kentucky’s 5th congressional district, attended a special meeting of the Gateway Area Development District (ADD) Wednesday to provide an update about ongoing work in Washington, DC and across southern and eastern Kentucky. [The Morehead News]

When the United States sought to punish Russia last month for its election interference and other aggressions, it targeted some of Russia’s wealthiest men, imposing sanctions on those viewed as enriching themselves off President Vladimir V. Putin’s government. Now it turns out that one of the men, Viktor F. Vekselberg, was also singled out in another of the efforts to confront Russia’s election interference: the investigation led by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III. Federal agents working with Mr. Mueller stopped Mr. Vekselberg, a billionaire businessman, at a New York-area airport this year and sought to search his electronic devices and question him, according to people familiar with the matter. [NY Times]

While law enforcement agencies and other organizations around the nation may be increasing their gun bring-back programs, so far, that idea is not taking off in the Barren County area. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Beijing’s International Security Defense College, which boasts of becoming “the largest private security training school in China,” sits behind a 45-foot-high exterior wall and a barricade. Inside the compound, trainers with police and military experience teach classes on tackling detainees, handling hostage situations and thwarting terrorist attacks. [WaPo]

Faced with the need to cut nearly $1 million from its budget, Kentucky Educational Television is eliminating its online campus offerings, long known as “distance learning.” [H-L]

A high-ranking political appointee at the Department of the Interior told colleagues their job is ultimately to protect their boss, Secretary Ryan Zinke, internal emails reveal ― in particular from matters that could trigger an ethics probe or negative media attention. [HuffPo]

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