Overdoses Are Hitting Ashland Hard

The effort to preserve a 125-mile stretch of Pine Mountain that runs the length of southeastern Kentucky has taken a significant step forward with the purchase of nearly 2,000 acres, the Kentucky Natural Lands Trust announced Thursday. [H-L]

The public feud between Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Donald Trump continued to escalate on Tuesday. The GOP senator, who warned earlier this month that Trump’s behavior could lead to World War III, told CNN that he believes the president’s legacy will be the “debasement of our nation.” [HuffPo]

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has made its final decision for a new VA hospital in Louisville, and it is sticking with a 35-acre farmland site off Brownsboro Road. [C-J/AKN]

The U.S government issued a rare public warning that sophisticated hackers are targeting energy and industrial firms, the latest sign that cyber attacks present an increasing threat to the power industry and other public infrastructure. [Reuters]

A second person has announced her candidacy to become the next Barren County clerk, with incumbent Joanne London not seeking re-election. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Another lawmaker is asking insurers whether their policies have made it easier for patients to access cheaper, more addictive drugs over less addictive alternatives. Meanwhile, the insurance industry trade group pledged additional steps to combat inappropriate prescribing. [ProPublica]

Rowan County Fiscal Court made it clear during its monthly meeting on Tuesday that it did not support a rate increase proposed by Advanced Disposal, owner and operator of the county landfill. [The Morehead News]

This idiot. Speaking to reporters alongside Puerto Rican Governor Ricardo Rosselló at the White House on Thursday, Trump gave the White House the highest possible marks for its response to Hurricane Maria. [ThinkProgress]

A plaque proclaiming Jefferson Davis as a hero and a patriot will be removed from Kentucky’s Capitol, the latest effort to alter Confederate monuments across the country following outbreaks of racially motivated violence. [Richmond Register]

After a series of high-profile police shootings, police departments across the nation turned to body cameras, hoping they would curb abuses. But a rigorous study released Friday shows that they have almost no effect on officer behavior. [NY Times]

An overdose awareness and prevention seminar is set for Thursday in downtown Ashland amid an overdose crisis that’s devastated the Tri-State and left at least 34 dead in Boyd County this year alone. [Ashland Independent]

These fools have no idea that it’s the media’s job to constantly question those in power – no matter what. Yet again, the White House has declared itself to be above question. [WaPo]

It was time. Long past time, actually. As the sun set Tuesday on a beautiful fall day, it also set on Lexington’s two most visible symbols of history rewritten. [Tom Eblen]

Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) won’t run for re-election in 2018, The Arizona Republic first reported. Flake spoke about his decision on the Senate floor Tuesday, railing against the “appalling features of our current politics” and arguing that lawmakers should “never regard as normal the regular and casual undermining of our democratic norms and ideals.” [HuffPo]

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Flashback: A Nightmare At Woodsbend

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Kentuckians have yet to see the public employee pension “reform” bill that Matt Bevin and the General Assembly’s Republican majority hope to railroad into law during a special session this year that has yet to be scheduled. But Bevin and GOP leaders outlined their ideas at a Frankfort news conference Oct. 18 that left many questions unanswered. Among them: Where do they plan to get the money to pay down more than $30 billion in unfunded pension obligations? [Tome Eblen]

Multiple families of military service members killed in the line duty are now getting rush-delivered letters from Donald Trump, days after Trump claimed he had called the immediate families of all service members who had been killed since he took office in January. [HuffPo]

You’ll want to read this, Morgan Countians. A knock at the door after midnight brought the grim news that 17-year-old Dennis Buttry was dead. His mother collapsed at the news. Just days earlier, she received a letter reporting the boy had “arrived safely” at Woodsbend Boys Camp, a state center for juvenile offenders in Eastern Kentucky. [C-J/AKN]

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Granny) has become a flashpoint for Republicans running for Senate in 2018. [The Hill]

Sometimes Berea is a lovely center of artistic life and sometimes it comes off sounding like a barnyard full of backwoods yokels. A proposed dog park in the Harrison Court area of Berea drew a lot of opposition from area residents Thursday at a public forum. [Richmond Register]

Ford Motor Co said on Wednesday it would recall about 1.3 million vehicles in North America, including certain 2015-17 Ford F-150 and 2017 Ford Super Duty trucks, to add water shields to side door latches. [Reuters]

The Barren County School District has reasons to celebrate and reasons for concern Superintendent Bo Matthews shared during Tuesday night’s board meeting. [Glasgow Daily Times]

A federal judge this week unsealed the source code for a software program developed by New York City’s crime lab, exposing to public scrutiny a disputed technique for analyzing complex DNA evidence. [ProPublica]

After 25 years of serving as the Raceland city attorney, James Lyon Jr. has announced his resignation due to a conflict with the City Council. In a resignation letter distributed on Friday Lyon explained his reasoning saying “the actions of council in refusing to take my advice and insisting on hiring separate counsel create an unworkable situation for me.” [Ashland Independent]

For years, the Environmental Protection Agency has struggled to prevent an ingredient once used in stain-resistant carpets and nonstick pans from contaminating drinking water. [NY Times]

The fix for Kentucky’s badly underfunded pension systems proposed by Matt Bevin and Republican legislative leaders is complex with a lot of moving parts. [Ronnie Ellis]

Don’t worry – Kentucky comes off looking and sounding terrible. For more than a decade, Kristin Page-Nei begged Montana lawmakers to raise cigarette prices. As a health advocate for the American Cancer Society, she watched year after year as other states increased their cigarette taxes and lowered their smoking rates. “What they’re doing is saving lives,” she kept saying. [WaPo]

Paul Prather’s an idiot who couches his bigotry – and it’s very much bigotry – in a shroud of faux religion. Here he is claiming landlords are being victimized by poor people. Someone slap some sense into this man. Good fucking grief. Calling himself a “christian” (no, you don’t get a capital C) and whining about how bad well-to-do folks like him have it. If it’s not this, he’s whining about non-white people, the gays or women. [H-L]

On a warm Wednesday evening here in late August, six minutes from where a Ferguson police officer had shot and killed an unarmed man three years prior, an armed man was pacing in front of his mother’s home, yelling at the cops. His left hand was on a gun in his waistband and his right hand was holding a cellphone. [HuffPo]

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RPK: Robbing Teachers & Other Retirees

The Republican Party of Kentucky has failed the Commonwealth. That group of fat, old, racist, homophobic, self-absorbed white guys is working to guarantee that the best workers are never again hired by state government. Killing pensions for workers is beyond absurd. [H-L]

Hillary Clinton drew parallels between Harvey Weinstein and Donald Trump, calling the disgraced Hollywood mogul’s behavior “disgusting” and “heartbreaking” ― just like the person once caught on camera bragging about sexually assaulting women. [HuffPo]

A justice of the Kentucky Supreme Court says that the small state retirement plan for judges is in sound shape and should be left alone when lawmakers tackle pension reform. [C-J/AKN]

Sixty-six police officers were killed on the job by felons in 2016, up about 61 percent from 41 deaths a year ago, the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation said on Monday. [Reuters]

Royally screwing education – for fun. Matt Bevin was joined by legislators, education officials and community leaders Tuesday as he ceremonially signed House Bill 520 in the State Capitol Rotunda. [Richmond Register]

Last month, the Trump administration said it could not comply with a court order to disclose the names of people who met with the president at Mar-a-Lago in part because they do “not maintain any system for keeping track” of them. [ProPublica]

This project probably won’t end in disaster like it did in Montgomery County. Glasgow Independent Schools will be providing Chromebooks to all incoming freshman at Glasgow High School beginning next school year. [Glasgow Daily Times]

For several years now, a small cadre of conservatives have pushed to eliminate the so-called Johnson Amendment, the part of the IRS tax code that prohibits churches and other tax-exempt nonprofits from endorsing candidates. Supporters of its repeal often justify their position by claiming the issue is about “religious liberty,” arguing the law inhibits the freedom of faith leaders. [ThinkProgress]

The father of a man shot to death in in August 2016 in Harlan County has filed a federal wrongful death lawsuit. [WKYT]

Donald Trump says his drug czar nominee has withdrawn, after he reportedly helped weaken government efforts to tackle the opioid crisis. [BBC]

Don’t worry – you don’t live there. Residents in three Louisville neighborhoods can begin signing up for Google Fiber ultra high speed internet. [WFPL]

An old rotary phone rings insistently. Visitors at a new exhibition at the Museum of Memory and Human Rights here in Santiago who pick up the receiver hear two men complain bitterly about the liberal news media “bleating” over the military coup that had toppled Salvador Allende, the Socialist president of Chile, five days earlier. [NY Times]

That initial burst of national attention has now died and she won’t be able to keep up with Barr’s fundraising. Retired Marine fighter pilot Amy McGrath jumped out to a large financial lead in the Democratic primary to challenge Republican Andy Barr for his Central Kentucky congressional seat. [H-L]

A Republican congressional candidate from Florida has made some out-of-this-world claims. Bettina Rodriguez Aguilera, one of nearly a dozen candidates hoping to win the U.S. House seat currently held by retiring Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, claims she was abducted by aliens who reminded her of Jesus Christ, according to newly resurfaced interviews. [HuffPo]

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Birds Of A Feather: Rand & Donald

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Nearly all of the state’s child-welfare caseworkers say their workload is unmanageable — on average, it’s twice the recommended standard — even as the state of Kentucky removes more children from their parents every year because of abuse and neglect, according to a report released Thursday. [John Cheves]

The Trump administration intends to continue diplomatic efforts with North Korea “until the first bomb drops,” Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Sunday. [HuffPo]

The last time Rand Paul and Donald J. Trump hit the links they were talking business, but on Sunday it may have been just for leisure. [C-J/AKN]

A Taliban spokesman denied on Sunday accusations by a Canadian man that one of his children had been murdered and his wife raped while they were being held captive by militants who kidnapped them in Afghanistan in 2012. [Reuters]

Just a reminder that Rand Paul is batshit insane, racist and fighting against the very people he’s elected to represent. And you’re all just turning a blind eye. [Richmond Register]

A group of House Democrats introduced a bill on Wednesday that would require federal officials to disclose any potential conflicts of interest before they implement significant changes in U.S. regulations. [ProPublica]

The Kentucky Department of Corrections removed state prisoners from the Boyd County Detention Center after the jail failed to abide by the DOC’s order. [Ashland Independent]

The Trump campaign spent $267,924 on lawyers for Donald Trump Jr. from July to September, according to disclosures made to the Federal Election Commission on Sunday. The figure includes $237,924 for Trump Jr.’s personal attorney, Alan Futerfas. Another $30,000 went to Williams and Jensen, which helped Trump Jr. prepare for Congressional testimony. [ThinkProgress]

“Sexual assault is an epidemic,” said Attorney General Andy Beshear. Beshear visited Morehead State University on Tuesday to discuss preventing sexual assault, not only on university campuses, but statewide. [The Morehead News]

It is unlike Trump to cheer when stocks fall, but early on Saturday he did just that. “Health insurance stocks, which have gone through the roof during the ObamaCare years, plunged yesterday after I ended their Dems windfall!” he tweeted. [NY Times]

The first-ever meeting of the Barren County Fiscal Court Parks and Recreation Committee is Monday evening. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Donald Trump signed an executive order on Thursday intended to circumvent the Affordable Care Act by making it easier for individuals and small business to buy alternative types of health insurance with lower prices, fewer benefits and weaker government protections. [WaPo]

Speculation that Republicans will finally announce their proposed framework for pension reform has echoed through the walls of the Capitol this week. So far it hasn’t happened. [H-L]

Kentucky needs to jump on this. California has banned pet stores from selling cats, dogs and rabbits unless they work with shelters or rescue groups to supply the animals. [HuffPo]

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Dick Roeding Was A Homophobic Bigot

Daviess County Sheriff’s Department deputies and the Owensboro Police Department’s hazardous device unit were called to a home under construction in west Daviess County on Thursday after a crew found an explosive device that had been stuffed in a portable toilet. [H-L]

Donald Trump denied a report on Wednesday that he previously requested a tenfold increase to the U.S. nuclear arms supply. NBC News published a piece alleging that he made the ask over the summer after seeing a slide displaying the reduction in American nuclear weaponry since the 1960s. [HuffPo]

The contracts for a pair of suspended Louisville men’s basketball coaches would allow the University of Louisville Athletic Association to fire them as soon as Monday morning’s board meeting. [C-J/AKN]

Groups that advocate for LGBT rights increasingly feel that they are under assault from the Trump administration. [The Hill]

Bigots of a feather flock together. John Schickel is a homophobic bigot just like Dick Roeding. Both have spent years fighting to make the lives of LGBT people miserable and unlivable. Fuck both of these people. Thank goodness one of them is dead. Yes, I said it. Thank goodness Roeding is dead so he can no longer harm young gay people. If you’re praising him? Check yourself. Something is wrong with you. [CN|Toot]

Donald Trump suggested challenging media licenses for NBC and other broadcast news networks on Wednesday, delivering his latest salvo against the media after recent NBC News reports about Trump’s secretary of state and the country’s nuclear arsenal. [Reuters]

It’s almost like someone did zero research regarding freshwater crustaceans before writing this. My eyes rolled way back into my head because I’ve studied them for 20+ years – to the point of my side hustle being speciality freshwater shrimp foods that took a decade to perfect. It’s frustrating to see people get paid for producing mediocre, ill-informed content while editors push it around like it’s stellar or groundbreaking. These shrimp (no S – shrimp is plural) aren’t difficult to find because I’ve been able to locate them my entire life. Their habitat is well understood among hobbyists and scientists. Otherwise, I wouldn’t know what I know and wouldn’t be shocked as hell at a story like this. It’d behoove the writer to put in more effort before publishing something a cave guy knows little about as fact. [WFPL]

The National Institute of Standards and Technology announced last week that it is launching a new study of certain types of DNA analysis used in criminal prosecutions. [ProPublica]

Auditors reviewing an Appalachian county’s finances found that its former treasurer wrote herself checks worth more than $114,000 by dipping into county funds and emergency preparedness grant money, Kentucky’s auditor said Tuesday. State Auditor Mike Harmon said he was forwarding the findings regarding former Jackson County Treasurer Beth Sallee to the FBI, Kentucky State Police and state attorney general. [Richmond Register]

The International Monetary Fund delivered a blunt warning to international policy makers ahead of the fund’s annual meeting this week: Governments risk undermining global economic growth by cutting taxes on the wealthy. [NY Times]

New Boyd Emergency Medical Services director Charles “Chuck” Cremeans said he will work to give his staff the tools it needs to save lives in an aging county with a staggering overdose rate. [Ashland Independent]

Donald Trump is full of shit about stock market claims. Just like he always is. Here’s proof. [WaPo]

In the days following Sunday night’s mass shooting in Las Vegas, Google searches for gun control spiked to overtake searches for gun shops in every state — except Kentucky. [H-L]

A coalition of more than a hundred Democratic members of Congress has asked Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis if the Pentagon helped advise Donald Trump on his July decision to bar transgender Americans from serving in the U.S. military. [HuffPo]

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Bevin Lost Another Of His Dumb Games

Steve Bannon plans to back primary challengers to almost every Republican senator who runs for re-election next year in an effort to depose Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and streamline Senate voting procedures, three people familiar with his plans said. [H-L]

There’s nothing about these people that isn’t horrendously trashy. Absolutely nothing. [HuffPo]

Matt Bevin’s administration cannot keep secret the names of investors in Braidy Industries Inc., which received $15 million in public funding for a new aluminum plant in Eastern Kentucky, Attorney General Andy Beshear has ruled. [C-J/AKN]

Wannabe YouTube stars and diehard Donald Trump supporters ‘Williams & Kalvin’ totally swear they’re from Atlanta. In reality, they were working for the Kremlin. [TDB]

The first legally recognized and chartered Native American Indian group celebrated its 45th anniversary last month. [The Morehead News]

The Treasury Department’s Office of Intelligence and Analysis has been illegally rifling through and filing away the private financial records of US citizens, Treasury employees alleged. “This is such an invasion of privacy,” said one official. [BuzzFeed]

Scott Gillum was officially appointed Flatwoods police chief by the city council — three years after he was named acting chief. [Ashland Independent]

Have you seriously considered filing for bankruptcy any time in the last ten years? [ProPublica]

The Madison County Fiscal Court announced the opening of the 2017/2018 Charitable Giving Program grant cycle. The program, which provides gap funding for nonprofit programs focused on assisting Madison County residents, is in its third year. This year’s program will award $37,000 in grants to eligible recipients. [Richmond Register]

Two decades ago, the Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein invited Ashley Judd to the Peninsula Beverly Hills hotel for what the young actress expected to be a business breakfast meeting. Instead, he had her sent up to his room, where he appeared in a bathrobe and asked if he could give her a massage or she could watch him shower, she recalled in an interview. [NY Times]

You may not know Jon Fleischaker, but if you live in Kentucky, you probably know more about your government than citizens in many states. You can thank Jon Fleischaker. [Ronnie Ellis]

After nearly nine months of the Trump administration, many of the closest U.S. allies have concluded that the hoped-for “learning curve” they believed would make Trump a reliable partner is not going to happen. Policy, and who makes it, remains a riddle, and there is growing acceptance the administration’s unpredictability is a permanent condition. [WaPo]

What on earth? There are only a couple people on this list who aren’t straight-up con artists. [Tom Eblen]

Surprise! A bigot wasted your taxpayer dollars for a personal, racist stunt. Mike Pence leaving an NFL game early on Sunday was a costly political “stunt,” according to some Democratic lawmakers. [HuffPo]

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UofL Is Corrupt As Hell And We’ve Been Yelling About It For More Than A Decade

Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao had planned to fly commercial to Detroit in early June for events on the future of American roads. Then, days before, the White House derailed her plans, organizing an “infrastructure week” speech in Washington alongside Donald Trump. [WaPo]

It’s impossible to know exactly who, where or when, but one day in 2016, a Kentucky state employee packed up her desk, said goodbye to her colleagues and officially retired. [John Cheves]

If the Trump administration isn’t going to try to sell Obamacare to consumers this year, these Obama administration veterans are ready to step in. [HuffPo]

For years, Forbes has touted University of Louisville’s basketball program as the richest in college athletics, while its entire athletics department has been acclaimed as the envy of the county. But for all its winning seasons, national championships and bowl appearances, the athletic powerhouse built by now-suspended athletic director Tom Jurich falls short in at least one regard: It doesn’t turn a profit. [C-J/AKN]

This orange pigfucker has got to go. Same for people, like Scott Jennings, who love him. The price of Puerto Rico’s benchmark general obligation bonds tumbled to a record low on Wednesday after Donald Trump suggested late on Tuesday the island’s massive debt load will have to be wiped out due to devastation caused by Hurricane Maria. [Reuters]

A former Richmond Police sergeant who resigned from the department last month and has since been hired by the Madison County Sheriff’s Office had received a written letter of admonishment and was ordered to undergo counseling after a closed meeting of the Richmond City Commission, at which the commission found he was guilty of violating the department’s use of language policy. [Richmond Register]

The special prosecutor investigating Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election has subpoenaed an associate of Gen. Michael Flynn’s Turkish lobbying client. [ProPublica]

Most of the Boyd County Detention Center was reopened Tuesday — 45 days after a riot by maximum-security inmates forced the relocation of about 300 prisoners. [Ashland Independent]

Before he mowed down concertgoers from a perch high in a hotel tower, Stephen C. Paddock created a ring of surveillance around him, with video cameras in his suite and in the hallway, law enforcement officials said on Tuesday. But investigators were still at a loss to offer a motive for the massacre. [NY Times]

The Morehead Pride Festival has expanded in its second year and will be held this Saturday, Oct. 7, from 10 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. on East First Street in Morehead. [The Morehead News]

If the president had traveled a little deeper into the island, to the communities that sustained some of the heaviest damage, he would have witnessed a very different Puerto Rico. [WaPo]

Lawmakers are still keeping tight-lipped on possible changes to the state’s pension systems, saying they’re still privately trying to get consensus among the Republican majority in the state legislature. [WFPL]

Russia has opened a new battlefront with NATO, according to Western military officials, by exploiting a point of vulnerability for almost all allied soldiers: their personal smartphones. [WSJ]

Too little, too late. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee announced Thursday it will run radio ads targeting U.S. Rep. Andy Barr for his efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. [H-L]

Mitch McConnell is dick-whipped by the NRA. The old fucker has probably never fired a gun on his own and he’s bending over for the NRA – an organization that does not represent us everyday gun owners. [HuffPo]

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