Hey Ladies! It’s Thursday Afternoon & Boring!

We know you have nothing better to do than read this fancy website while you listen to Ray LaMontagne croon out a song about Meg White. We know how it is. So don’t even act like you’re doing anything important.

Hot! Our childhood favorite, Fort Boonsborough State Park, now has an online store! All of our friends are going to hate us because you know we’re going to buy them all kinds of crap. [18th Century Store]

Mayor for Life and Steve Beshear are Captains Obvious. The two released a joint statement this afternoon saying that the automotive industry is vital to the economies of both Louisville and the Commonwealth of Kentucky. “We cannot let the automotive industry fail,” Beshear said. “It would be devastating to Kentucky’s economy – and to Louisville’s vitality.” … “Ford has a plan for its future, both nationally and in Louisville,” Abramson said. “It’s about making smaller, more fuel efficient cars – and it’s about making them in our hometown.” We’re not sure a press release was necessary? We already knew that the two of them were supporting the disastrous auto “bailout.” Yay for shooting blanks. [Press Release]

How does the Pickens Plan affect Kentucky? [Clicky Clicky]

Are you watching this hot mess of a fight going down between Jerry Abramson and Louisville’s Metro Council? Crooked Jim King is cooking up backroom deals while giving council Republicans the upper hand. Nice. [The ‘Ville Voice]

We love this fight between money bags Leonard Lawson and the feds. Cold cash on the cod? Give a man a fish? WHAT! We love this and think it should be a reality television series on KET. [Stephenie Steitzer]

Remember the Ann Gotlib case from 1983? Po-leece are gonna announce new developments this afternoon. [C-J]

Robert Felner & UofL Non-Story Update

Here’s your daily non-story from Business First.

The University of Louisville is providing investigation updates on the Robert Felner situation.

Officials with the University of Louisville provided updates on steps the school has taken in the wake of former College of Education and Human Development dean Robert Felner’s federal indictment on charges of money laundering, mail fraud and conspiracy to defraud the Internal Revenue Service.

The indictments stem from the alleged misuse of grant money appropriated to U of L and the University of Rhode Island.

U of L officials said auditors have completed an internal audit of the College of Education and Human Development’s finances. The auditors are expected to present their findings to university administrators following the Thanksgiving holiday. The administrators then will respond to those findings.

-SNIP-

A faculty senate committee Tuesday finished interviewing faculty members about their understanding of the grievance policy. The committee is expected to complete a report on its findings by Dec. 5, U of L said.

-SNIP-

Another committee is reviewing the university’s conflict of interest policy and is expected to propose a “values statement,” U of L said.

The university also continues to investigate the university’s awarding of a Ph.D. to John Deasy, deputy director of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, during Felner’s tenure.

Still no word on any potential conflict of interest with the Cotton Allen firm.

And here’s WFPL’s take.

Felner is accused of misappropriating federal grant money. As a result, the university has established committees for internal and external audits of grant management and grievance policies and plans to hire an ombudsman to address grievances. But university spokesperson John Drees says the position hasn’t been filled, in part because there isn’t room on campus for another office.

“That process is still underway,” he says. “All of that is interwoven – the hiring, the location, the setup, what would be required. There are quite a few details that still need to be worked out on that.”

This is going to turn into a crazy circus, I think. A years-long circus at the University alone. And the trial– if it goes to trial– will be purely depressing entertainment.

UPDATE: Oh, just so we can make Joe Gerth yell at us about how mean we are to Nancy Rodriguez, here’s a link to her story about the very same thing.

Ruh Ro: Some Big VA Money Scandal

Oh snap. There’s a big ass V.A. scandal going down. Here’s Hebert’s teaser.

And here’s the C-J story:

Fourteen people were indicted yesterday in Louisville for conspiring to defraud the Veterans Administration out of $1.9 million by fabricating phony claims for disabilities.

The indictment alleges that the ringleaders were Daniel Ryan Parker, 37, a supervisor at Disabled American Veterans in Louisville, and Jeffrey Allan McGill, also 37, who worked at the VA regional office in Louisville and whose job was reviewing claims.

The indictment also alleges that 11 veterans falsely claimed to suffer from bipolar disorder, hearing loss, frostbite, back injuries and other ailments and disabilities.

The veterans allegedly received lump-sum payments for back pay and then kick backed as much as two-thirds of it to Parker and McGill, according to the indictment.

This is the lowest of the low. Lower than anything Robert Felner ever did. Dishonoring and taking advantage of the one segment of society who TRULY deserves to be put on a pedestal and taken care of forever? Scum of the earth.

Meanwhile, hundreds of veterans are homeless and dying in Kentucky thanks to inadequate care and support from these douche nozzles.

Keep checking the C-J story for updates from Andy Wolfson, one of the best reporters on-staff at the Courier-Journal.

And be thankful for David Huber and the rest of his crew in the U.S. Attorney’s office. Here’s hoping the Obama Administration keeps him around.

In LEO This Week…

There’s too much in LEO this week to focus on one issue.

Who Killed Timmy Jo? Phillip Bailey writes what breaks our heart.

The flamboyant ensemble would be the same outfit the teenager — fondly called “Timmy Jo” by friends and family — was found dead in hours later. Acquaintances tell LEO Weekly they saw Timothy in passing the night he was murdered; however, no definitive timeline has been established.

The sparse incident report, signed by Louisville Metro Police homicide detective Gary Huffman, indicates a witness called dispatchers around 6:45 a.m. on Sunday, May 22, 2005, to report a person lying at the corner of 28th and Magazine streets. Police responded, found Timothy with multiple gunshot wounds and pronounced him dead at the scene.

The murder of a black man dressed in drag prompted friends and family to believe, at least initially, that a hate crime might have been committed. But Timothy’s murder has since garnered few headlines and little interest from the community.

Click here to read the rest…

Is Marco Allen Chapman Ready To Die?

Time is running out for Marco Allen Chapman, who is scheduled to die by lethal injection Friday at the Kentucky State Penitentiary in Eddyville. If the execution is carried out as expected, the 36-year-old will become the first Kentucky inmate put to death in nearly a decade.

It’s an outcome Chapman has welcomed since his arrest for murdering two children and wounding their sister and mother during a violent rampage in Gallatin County in 2002. After confessing to the crime, the killer fired his public defenders, waived a jury trial and pleaded with the court to impose a death sentence.

Click here to read the rest…

Art experts are pushing to restore one of our favorite things about Louisville – “The Thinker” – and we couldn’t be more pleased that it’s finally getting some attention.

For decades, the University of Louisville has been home to a masterpiece you’re probably familiar with — “The Thinker.” But chances are you are completely unaware of the remarkable history behind this hidden jewel, which the university has long failed to promote, meanwhile letting the iconic statue fall into disrepair.

French sculptor Auguste Rodin created the “The Thinker,” which depicts a man deep in thought. It’s his most famous work, and it turns out U of L is home to the first full-size bronze cast of the piece, with other casts of the statue in such prominent locations as the National Museum of Western Art in Tokyo, the Sydney Opera House and Stanford University in California.

But again, ours is the first, a fascinating morsel of knowledge the university has inexplicably neglected to publicize — until now.

Click here to read the rest…

Update On Alleged 26th District Voter Fraud

An update to our earlier story

This Precinct Report (PDF Link) we obtained reveals that the Pine Valley Precinct (B121) had a total of 1,144 votes cast in the race for State Representative in the 26th District– plus 23 under votes, totaling 1,167. We’re waiting on a copy of the e-Scan sheet that allegedly shows a total of 1,017.

We’ve also been told that the sign-in log is only one number off from actual vote total, not 150… so we’ll have to see what’s up. The Hardin County Clerk was on the radio (WULF) this weekend (and here in the News-Enterprise) stating that 150 votes were re-scanned, only missing one vote. In addition to admitting that the machine was opened.

Just requested additional information from the Democratic House Caucus (documentation or whatever they can provide) to help explain their argument. We’ll keep you updated as we get it.

Appears to us that the only thing with legs is the fact that the voting machine was opened and ballots were handled/re-scanned– violating KRS 117.215 (PDF Link), which states:

117.215 – Procedure when machine becomes unusable during election — Counting of votes — Backup voting machine or supplemental paper ballots for emergency use.

(1) If, during the conduct of an election, a machine becomes in a state of disrepair so that it cannot be operated in a manner that will comply with the provisions of this chapter, the election officers shall lock or seal the machine in such a manner as to prevent further voting thereon and record the numbers shown by the public counter. Then the election officers shall lock or seal the machine in such a manner as to prevent further voting thereon and record the numbers shown by the public counter. Then the election officers shall secure from the county clerk a reserve voting machine, which shall be prepared and made ready for use as provided in KRS 117.205, and thereupon proceed to conduct the election. When the polls are closed both the original and reserve voting machines shall be examined and the votes thereon registered shall be counted as provided in KRS 117.275 and the aggregate number of votes cast on both machines for each candidate and on each question shall be certified as the result of the election in that precinct.

(2) If an emergency should arise due to the malfunction of the voting machine, the county clerk shall provide a backup voting machine or supplemental paper ballots for use at the precinct and a ballot box in which to deposit the voted ballots. The ballot box shall be locked with two (2) locks and the judges of the precinct shall each hold the key to one (1) lock. At the close of voting, the ballots shall be counted at the precinct or a central counting center and added to the votes cast by machine. The aggregate of these votes shall be certified as the result of the election in that precinct.

And KRS 117.255 (PDF Link) provides more information on assisting voters and certifying voters who require assistance, the manner of voting and report of violations. I.E., it really is considered voting for someone when you re-scan their ballot when they’re not present.

It’s definitely a problem that the machine was opened, that one individual handled the ballots and that ballots may or may not have been tampered with. At the very least there needs to be a hand recount… even though we’ll probably never find out if there was ballot tampering.

Stay tuned. More to come.

Monday Evening Update Dept of Ruh Ro

All right for a slow-yet-busy news day. We spent all day working on a story that will see light in a few weeks. We also learned today that Democrats will be quite happy with the outcome of this weekend’s State Central Executive Committee meeting. Real change is coming to the Kentucky Democratic Party and even we won’t have much to complain about.

University of Louisville president Jim Ramsey is considered among a new general of University presidents who are being commended for turning down a bonus. Never mind the fact that the man is already making half a million dollars per year without a bonus. Strangely, there’s no mention of indicted deans anywhere. [ABC News]

Every racist on earth has come out of the woodwork since Barack Obama won the election. More than 200 cross burnings and other fancy incidents have taken place since November 4. And it looks like we’re in for tons more of it. [Christian Science Monitor]

Ruh ro. Tom Burch is being investigated by the Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission. Burch allegedly wrote a letter to the court of appeals begging special treatment for a constituent involved in a child custody case. We’ll obviously have to see how this all plays out. But. Uh. When will elected officials stop getting themselves into embarrassing situations like this? (And in other news, what happened to that McConnell story on the H-L’s new political site? It conveniently disappeared.) [Bluegrass Politics]

Oooh, yeah, Jefferson, some screaming queens are totally violent. How scary! The mean, flaming homosexuals all queening out! That’s what I’d be afraid of. From what we saw in the video, the cops wouldn’t let the gays walk on the sidewalk– in the homo neighborhood that the Mormons invaded. Your argument is dead, sweet cheeks. I mean, who the eff goes to the CASTRO in San Francisco if they don’t want the queens all fired up? Stupid. FEAR THE GAYS! They’re so mean and powerful! [Lone Supporter of Drunky McDrunk]

More on the Hardin County voter fraud sitchy-ayshun: Folks in-the-know tell us a voting machine allegedly failed and instead of turning the machine off and waiting til the end of the day to count the votes, the machine was opened and ballots were given to a surrogate to re-cast. The clerk apparently admitted this– and there is a recording in the hands of a reporter of a Hardin County newspaper of the whole admission– and all the facts will be released to the media tomorrow.

P.S. Isn’t it hilarious that the GAYEST PERSON ALIVE, Prince, is against gay marriage? He’s more of a homosexual than Michael Jackson is a pedophile– and that’s saying a lot. [Andrew Sullivan]

Also, we love being gay fascists who will ruin your lives and steal your children. It’s like Jim Gooch on a coconut cake. We will steal them and eat them or sell them into the gay homo sex trade. Beware.  From Newt Gingrich, the man with serious moral and ethical fortitude. [Media Matters]