Why Rand Will Never Be President…

Despite criticism from some city commissioners, Frankfort Mayor Bill May intends to pursue an independent investigation into the capital city’s police department in the wake of an ongoing investigation into a bourbon theft/steroid trafficking ring. [H-L]

The stupid is on high with presidential candidates. Mike Huckabee joined the growing pack of 2016 presidential candidates skeptical about climate science on Sunday. [HuffPo]

The Kentucky Democratic Party benefited from a jolt of new out-of-state contributors in May – 14 executives of AT&T who combined gave $12,550 to the party in this crucial gubernatorial election year. [C-J/AKN]

GCHQ’s covert surveillance of two international human rights groups was illegal, the judicial tribunal responsible for handling complaints against the intelligence services has ruled. [The Guardian]

Members of the Richmond City Commission argued about funding for employee benefits and economic development in a Tuesday morning work session. But, they were all smiles in a called session Friday afternoon when the 2015-16 budget was adopted on final reading. [Richmond Register]

Many of the quotes attributed to the Founding Fathers in two of Rand Paul’s books are either fake, misquoted, or taken entirely out of context. [BuzzFeed]

Barren County Fiscal Court unanimously decided in a special-called meeting Friday to go back to the county’s former health insurance agent of record, Pedigo-Lessenberry Insurance Agency. [Glasgow Daily Times]

With the release of his encyclical “Laudato Si” on Thursday, Pope Francis made headlines for recognizing the threat of human-caused climate change. But the encyclical also called attention to the world’s oceans, affirming just how vital they are to “our common home.” [ThinkProgress]

Kentucky gubernatorial candidates Matt Bevin and Jack Conway lobbed barbs in their first joint public appearance on Friday. [WFPL]

The US State Department says the number of terror attacks around the world rose by a third in 2014 compared with the previous year. [BBC]

The Lexington Humane Society is asking for the public’s help in replacing their air conditioning unit. [WAVE3]

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley said Monday that the Confederate flag near the state Capitol should be moved, reversing an earlier position she had held and adding a powerful voice to the growing chorus of calls for the flag’s removal. [WaPo]

Lexington Mayor Jim Gray said Monday that police are working hard to determine what was behind multiple shootings Sunday night during a basketball tournament at Douglass Park. [H-L]

We’re looking at you, Rand Paul, because you’ve known about this guy for ages. The leader of a white supremacist group cited by Charleston church murder suspect Dylann Roof made $65,000 in donations to Republicans, including several to Republican presidential candidates, The Guardian newspaper reported Sunday night.[HuffPo & TPM]

Fun Matt Bevin Conference Call Stuff

Or, how the Kentucky Democratic Party and Jack Conway couldn’t keep their immediate plans quiet.

Because on Monday, Matt Bevin’s campaign held a conference call. While, according to individuals on the call, it was disorganized? They were still aware (they contacted us several days before the ethics thing hit) of what the Dems were up to and held lengthy discussions about how to deal with the story the Dems pushed this week regarding Bevin.

In addition to rehashing issues that arose during the U.S. Senate primary last year, of course.

Come on, Dems. Stop allowing Bevin to get a heads-up. Stop giving him time to prepare.

Yes, absolutely, it’s still funny (scary?) watching his messy campaign struggle to respond either way. It’s much more fun to watch when the group is blindsided.

If we have to suffer through this gubernatorial campaign in the unbearable Kentucky humidity [we’d insert a bunch of teabagger jokes here… but it’s Friday]… the least you folks can do is provide the absolute best in campaign laughs.

Fun stuff: Bevin’s campaign is such a hot mess that it allegedly has no contact people named for any counties, only has campaign material printed with the May 19 primary date and has no plans to order new material until much later.

Ole Gurl Rolled Her Eyes At Rand Paul

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is working on a memoir. [H-L]

Not even U.S. senators are exempt from a little eye-rolling. That’s exactly what Miss Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) did Friday night when Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) began speaking as the Senate debated whether to end the government’s bulk collection of phone records. [HuffPo]

It’s fun watching Republicans talk about of both sides of their mouths about Matt Bevin. [C-J/AKN]

Paul helped scuttle compromise to reauthorize government surveillance programs. [The Hill]

Matt Bevin and Mitch McConnell apparently won’t be getting together anytime soon despite two opportunities this week to do so. [Ronnie Ellis]

Iraq’s Shi’ite paramilitaries said on Tuesday they had taken charge of the campaign to drive Islamic State from the western province of Anbar, giving the operation an openly sectarian codename that could infuriate its Sunni population. [Reuters]

The Kentucky Department of Corrections is hoping to combat a high number of staff vacancies and turnover rates in state prisons by increasing compensation for correctional officers and other hazardous duty staff, according to a government release. [Ashland Independent]

Even as women distinguish themselves as enlisted soldiers, many struggle with depression and a sense of alienation in an intensely male military world. [NY Times]

Several citizens expressed concern at Rowan Fiscal Court last week over Kinder Morgan’s proposal to carry volatile natural gas liquids through around 20 miles of over 60-year-old pipeline in Rowan County. [The Morehead News]

The glaciers of the Southern Antarctic Peninsula region are now also contributing to sea level rise. [WaPo]

Each school year Kentucky State Police say they respond to hundreds of threats that wind up being student pranks, but the consequences are anything but a joke. [WKYT]

The State Department released close to 900 pages of emails from Hillary Clinton’s tenure as secretary on Friday, providing a detailed looked at how an embattled agency responded to terrorist attacks in Benghazi and how Clinton, the frontrunner for the 2016 Democratic nomination for president, deals with her inner circle of advisers and well-wishers. [Politico]

Mediation of claims involving sexual harassment, retaliation and other misconduct against state lawmakers has been postponed until June 22. [H-L]

North American energy ministers said on Monday they had set up a working group on climate change and energy, a partnership designed to help Canada, the United States and Mexico harmonize policies. [HuffPo]

Is Lex Envious Of The Lou Shootings?

If Matt Bevin’s ignorance and code words leave you with a bitter taste in your mouth, you’re not alone. [H-L]

As Congress prepares to give President Barack Obama expedited powers to “fast-track” trade deals through Congress, many U.S. steel mills and skeptics of Obama’s trade agenda are worried about steel dumping, the term commonly used to describe countries selling steel below market price. [HuffPo]

State contractors, Steve Beshear appointees to important state boards, and two directors of R.J. Corman Railroad Group were among the big givers to the Kentucky Democratic Party in April. [C-J/AKN]

In the dead of night, they swept in aboard V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft. Landing in a remote region of one of the most volatile countries on the planet, they raided a village and soon found themselves in a life-or-death firefight. It was the second time in two weeks that elite US Navy SEALs had attempted to rescue American photojournalist Luke Somers. And it was the second time they failed. [The Nation]

If the city administration’s budget plan is adopted, Richmond Tourism will no longer be the lead organizer and funder of three popular events. [Richmond Register]

Presidential hopeful Sen. Rand Paul (R-Under the Bridge) ceded the Senate floor just before midnight Wednesday after more than 10 hours. [The Hill]

A former Carter County paramedic pleaded guilty Tuesday to charges that she diluted pain medication belonging to Carter County Emergency Medical Services, according to court records. [Ashland Independent]

The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose slightly more than expected last week, but the underlying trend continued to suggest the labor market was tightening. [Reuters]

Weeks after a video that rocked the county and brought into question the authorities of county officials was uploaded to Facebook, state officials have decided to take the first steps into looking into the case. [Hazard Herald]

If Jack Conway falls, it won’t be because of President Barack Obama and Kentucky racism. It’ll be because of Jack’s poor political decision making and the handful of shitty people he surrounds himself with. If he wants to win, he’ll turn over a new leaf (like he did with refusing to fight against marriage equality) and he’ll abandon the typical KDP tripe. [Politico]

A jury trial was set to begin June 1 for the alleged murder of two-year-old Nathaniel Jones but like the past six years, it will be delayed again. Tiea Jones and her former boyfriend, Brian Gallagher, were indicted in 2010 for murder and criminal abuse, first degree. [The Morehead News]

The latest estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau show the 15 cities with the biggest population increases were in the South and West — with two exceptions: New York City and Columbus, Ohio. [NPR]

A man was shot and wounded early Wednesday while walking through Martin Luther King Park, Lexington police said. [H-L]

It wasn’t that the intelligence community was giving the administration wholesale faulty intelligence. It was that the administration was lying to the American people about what the intelligence actually showed. [HuffPo]

Secret Sannie Shows Her True Colors

We still can’t stop laughing at how hard Sannie “Secret Sannie” Overly and the Democrats are fighting to keep their corruption secret. [H-L]

Global warming isn’t just affecting the weather, it’s harming Americans’ health, President Barack Obama said Tuesday as he announced steps government and businesses will take to better understand and deal with the problem. [HuffPo]

A day after announcing his bid for the White House in Louisville, Sen. Rand Paul got into a verbal scrapes with members of the media. [C-J/AKN]

Rand Paul (R-Garden Gnome), already in the spotlight for a televised fight with “Today” Show host Savannah Guthrie, got into a heated exchange over abortion on Wednesday with an Associated Press reporter. AP reporter Philip Elliott’s interview with Paul became heated after Elliott pressed the presidential candidate to say whether victims of rape should be able to get abortions. [The Hill]

In Milford on Wednesday, Paul said “when the founders of New Hampshire came up with the motto ‘Live Free or Die’, they didn’t leave a lot of wiggle room.” But the phrase didn’t become the state motto until 1945, and it wasn’t a state founder who came up with it. [WKYT]

Rand Paul has skipped most Homeland Security hearings since 2014, a review of videos and documents related to the hearings show. [BuzzFeed]

For Hazard native Jonathan Beatty, everything changed when he read the now-infamous New York Times article, “What’s the Matter with Eastern Kentucky?” [Hazard Herald]

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said on Thursday it was unlikely to approve new or expanded uses of certain pesticides while it evaluates the risks they may pose to honey bees. [Reuters]

Speaking at a meeting of the Harlan Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday, Harlan County Outdoor Recreation Board member Ken Crider asked businesses to begin displaying signs or pictures supporting local tourist attractions, along with welcoming signs for visitors. [Harlan Daily Enterprise]

Neither Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky nor New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was invited to address the NRA’s Leadership Forum. [Politico]

The group that sought to replace the existing board of directors for T.J. Samson Community Hospital has decided it will not pursue further legal options after the Kentucky Court of Appeals on March 20 upheld a lower-court ruling against the group. [Glasgow Daily Times]

A proposal to nearly triple the maximum compensation for workers who lose a limb follows a ProPublica/NPR story that showed Alabama to have the lowest permanent partial disability benefits in the country. [ProPublica]

Less than 24 hours after Rand Paul announced his White House bid before dozens of jubilant, flag-waving supporters, his fledgling presidential campaign seemed to be defined more by his defiant performance when the cheering stopped. [H-L]

U.S. President Barack Obama called on Wednesday for an end to psychiatric therapies that seek to change the sexual orientation of gay, lesbian and transgender youth, the White House said. [HuffPo]

On Diversity & Such In State Govt

Is Affirmative Action a thing in state government? What about diversity? Is there a diversity plan or are those just words on a screen/sheet of paper?

It’s necessary to ask those questions. Which means it’s time throw up some words and put them in a story on this clap trap called Page One.

Since the days of Ernie Fletcher’s corrupt and backwater administration, the Commonwealth has included white women in reports to lift up the state’s minority numbers. Because folks in charge (read: governor & friends) don’t want to detail how many African Americans, Latinos, et al work in state government. Transparency is not a thing in Kentucky.

Governor Paul Patton’s goal was to have 6% actual minorities (not white women) in state government. Governor Fletcher padded reports with white women, increasing the rate to 10%. Now Governor Steve Beshear has raised that amount to 12%, still including white women as minorities. No one in Beshear’s office wants to talk about it.

An example: Just a few years ago the Transportation Cabinet ran into problems with federal funding when it wasn’t meeting minority hiring requirements. Add white women? Voilà, numbers look good, funds keep flowing, no one’s the wiser.

We started sniffing around the governor’s minority management training program to examine statistics on graduates. Talk about a futile attempt to figure out what’s really going on in Frankfort. The program was moved from the Governor’s Office to the Personnel Cabinet, apparently with the hope that it would slip through the cracks.

It obviously has fallen through the cracks. We’ve been asking questions since January and haven’t received an answer to anything.

The program was designed to recruit and train a pool of minority employees to be prepared for positions in management. Cabinets in state government, according to current and former employees with direct knowledge, claimed they were unable to identify any minorities to hire for upper management. Which… right… control your laughter. So a program was developed to solve that problem and then it was promptly ignored.

Like it or not, this continues to happen in Kentucky because it’s ingrained in the good old boy culture. Regardless of the names of those in positions of leadership, policies don’t change, actions don’t change, practices don’t change.

It’s why people like Yolanda Costner can so easily be abused and discarded. The people carrying out the abuse know there are no consequences. Their good old boy brethren will protect them. From John Arnold to Johnny Bell to Greg Stumbo.

Before progressives try to blame this on Republicans? Remember that the Republican Party of Kentucky hasn’t been in charge in your lifetime. The Kentucky Democratic Party maintained control. For your entire lifetime.

The Democrats — the people you think of as the lesser of two evils — have been in charge for decades and this is what you’ve got.

Going to try to claim I’m being paid by Republicans or some nonsense? This website more than proves I hate both parties equally, as any thinking person should. It’s not about partisanship.

You’re going to be hearing a lot more about that good old boy network and how it’s maintained power over the next 18 months. They’ll still be in charge, sure, but Kentucky’s going to have an uncomfortable conversation or two.