Bevin: Always On The Wrong Side

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Matt Bevin’s decision to defend Scott Pruitt’s ridiculous waste, fraud and abuse should paint a clearer picture of who Bevin really is. He’s trash. A garbage human. He has no business serving in an elected capacity in Kentucky. He has no business being in charge of a company. Someone excusing Pruitt’s corruption really has no business being around flipping children. What a disgrace. [H-L]

Donald Trump signaled his support for Scott Pruitt on Friday, resisting mounting pressure week to fire the embattled head of the Environmental Protection Agency. [HuffPo]

The University of Louisville’s next president will be Neeli Bendapudi, provost and executive vice chancellor at the University of Kansas school of business. [C-J/AKN]

The Trump administration on Friday unveiled new actions against various Russian officials, oligarchs, businesses and agencies – freezing assets that are subject to U.S. jurisdiction One of the oligarchs named is Oleg Deripaska, a billionaire with links to former Trump campaign boss Paul Manafort, who has been charged in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 election. [CNBC]

As Matt Bevin and his administration works to establish Kentucky as an engineering and manufacturing hub, the state ranks among the least innovative in a recent report. [Richmond Register]

For the first time, the U.S. government has publicly acknowledged the existence in Washington of what appear to be rogue devices that foreign spies and criminals could be using to track individual cellphones and intercept calls and messages. [AP]

The financially struggling Fairview School District continues to pay its suspended superintendent while a temporary replacement works to pull the district out of its fiscal hole. [Ashland Independent]

Racist bigots are gonna be racist bigots. Attorney General Jeff Sessions ramped up calls on Friday to criminally prosecute immigrants who cross illegally into the United States, adding to a barrage of statements on immigration by the administration of Donald Trump this week. [Reuters]

Surprise! The paper in Morehead is shilling for a for-profit college that only exists because Republicans wouldn’t allow it to be held accountable. [The Morehead News]

With his son newly installed as a top aide to the president, Mr. Kushner even expressed hope, one close family friend said, that he might receive a pardon. Absolution, however, is not what the White House has conferred on the Kushners. For the patriarch and his family, the pinnacle of American political power has turned out to be a wellspring of trouble. [NY Times]

Residents who are not registered to vote have roughly two weeks to do so if they aim to vote in Kentucky’s May 22 primary election. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The study from researchers at Ohio State University finds that fake news likely played a significant role in depressing Hillary Clinton’s support on Election Day 2016. [WaPo]

On the 58th day of the 60 day legislative session, the Republican majority unveiled the most significant change to the state’s tax code in more than a decade and the Senate passed it before the bill was even made public. The reform package includes cutting some typical tax deductions, including medical expenses and medical insurance. [H-L]

Two of Martin Luther King Jr.’s surviving children gave powerful sermons Tuesday from the pulpit their father stood at when he gave his final speech on April 3, 1968. [HuffPo]

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Shoo, What A Year March Was

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How many years did I report on this while the mainstream media blew it off? The Kentucky Retirement Systems Board of Trustees is debating whether to join a lawsuit that says the state’s pension agency was cheated on up to $1.5 billion in hedge fund investments by several wealthy corporations, with blame to be shared by some of its own current and former trustees and officials. [John Cheves]

Modern Republicans are so severely gay-panicked they can’t breath. So of course they’re pulling crap like this with trans kids. At least three school districts around the country are continuing to enforce potentially hostile restroom policies for transgender students after the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights refused to investigate student complaints. [HuffPo]

Attorney General Andy Beshear says the surprise new pension bill is illegal, and he will file suit to block its implementation. [C-J/AKN]

Paul Manafort, the former chair of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, had a long professional relationship with a man connected to Russian intelligence. And special counsel Robert Mueller says that man, Konstantin Kilimnik, was still working with Russian intelligence in 2016, when Trump was running for president. [Vox]

Matt Bevin probably had no need Friday to worry about teachers hoarding sick days. Enough called in sick to close more than 20 school districts across the state. [Ronnie Ellis]

For the past 20 years, Hope Workman has hustled up a dirt path on the side of a mountain in Lovely, Kentucky, just to get drinking water. She doesn’t trust what comes out of her tap. [CNN]

Teachers in Northeast Kentucky were furious Friday after the Kentucky General Assembly on Thursday unexpectedly passed pension legislation they say insults them and will cripple the state’s ability to attract new educators. [Ashland Independent]

Cambridge Analytica’s US campaign data, which was harvested from Facebook, is still circulating – despite assurances it has been deleted. [Channel 4]

Their anger is palpable. So is their hurt. Kentucky teachers feel betrayed by a party line vote Thursday night in the Republican controlled General Assembly to make changes in their pension benefits. [Ronnie Ellis]

Donald Trump ordered the expulsion of 60 Russian officials on Monday, joining a coordinated campaign by two dozen countries to retaliate for the poisoning of a former Russian spy in Britain in a Cold War-style escalation that again highlighted the disparity between the president’s words and actions. [NY Times]

Teachers from around Kentucky descended on Frankfort Friday morning to protest a surprise pension bill that was rushed through the state legislature the day before. [WFPL]

Six months ago, the conservative radio host and blogger Erick Erickson wrote an opinion piece in the New York Times, inspiringly titled “How to Find Common Ground.” “We owe it to one another to disagree agreeably, without anger or intimidation,” he wrote, noting that social media has put us all in polarized bubbles. [WaPo]

Hundreds of angry teachers gathered in the Capitol Rotunda Friday outside Gov. Matt Bevin’s office to protest a surprise public pension bill that legislators rushed through Thursday. [H-L]

The Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday evening sent employees a list of eight approved talking points on climate change from its Office of Public Affairs ― guidelines that promote a message of uncertainty about climate science and gloss over proposed cuts to key adaptation programs. [HuffPo]

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Recent Moves Against Marijuana Are Rooted Purely In Racism & Elitist Greed

No one thinks the upcoming budget session in Frankfort — with a looming $1 billion deficit — will mean good news for higher education, but advocates are particularly worried by the possibility that lottery-financed scholarship programs might be in jeopardy. [Linda Blackford]

L-u-n-a-t-i-c. Donald Trump on Tuesday renewed his attack on his “deep state” Justice Department, and said a top aide to 2016 election rival Hillary Clinton should be jailed. [HuffPo]

It’s easy to spot drivers zipping down Kentucky highways well above the speed limit. But stopping them isn’t as simple as you might think. [C-J/AKN]

One of the top U.S. government officials working on refugee issues announced her impending retirement on Tuesday, and refugee advocates expressed concern about the fate of the country’s resettlement program which faces mounting pressure from the Trump administration. [Reuters]

From the boardroom to the basketball court, the University of Louisville had a tough year. Hall of Fame Coach Rick Pitino was fired, the school dealt with a yearlong probation from an accrediting group and an audit found mismanagement at a foundation overseeing its investments. [Richmond Register]

Chicken plants have recruited thousands of foreign workers in recent years through a little-known program to fill jobs they say Americans won’t do. [ProPublica]

Shelves in the food pantry at First United Methodist Church were seemingly full Wednesday morning. [Ashland Independent]

Joseph Flynn — brother of former presidential national security adviser Michael Flynn, who recently pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI — demanded a pardon for his brother on Tuesday. [ThinkProgress]

It’s stupid to continue arresting people for growing marijuana. The only reason it happens is because it makes local law enforcement agencies money. But no one wants to talk about that reality. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is rescinding the Obama-era policy that had paved the way for legalized marijuana to flourish in states across the country, two people with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press. [Associated Press]

The Louisville jail’s heating system is hobbling under cold temperatures, forcing some inmates to face near-freezing temperatures in their cells. [WFPL]

Donald Trump didn’t want to be president. One year ago: the plan to lose, and the administration’s shocked first days. [New York Magazine]

Eight members of the House of Representative filed a formal charge Wednesday calling for the expulsion of House Speaker Jeff Hoover following his decision to remain speaker even though he had promised to step down amid a sexual harassment scandal this fall. [H-L]

Donald Trump and Rand Paul both pushed this. It’s insane how racists those two folks are. [HuffPo]

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These Trump Voter Stories Are Stupid

Look, these shitty “Trump Voter” stories need to end and any journalist focusing on them is a piece of hot garbage. It’s now just preying on a stereotype and perpetuating stupidity. It wasn’t just the dumb, racist, homophobic hillbillies who voted for Trump – it was your wealthy white neighbor who had more of an impact. The regulars amble in before dawn and claim their usual table, the one next to an old box television playing the news on mute. [H-L]

Donald Trump is spending the holidays at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, continuing a pattern that has created questions of conflicts of interest. [HuffPo]

Hold on tight. KentuckyOne Health and Catholic Health Initiatives have entered into exclusive negotiations with BlueMountain Capital Management, a New York-based asset management firm, to explore selling Jewish Hospital and other Louisville facilities. [C-J/AKN]

The chief of staff for Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, Wendy Teramoto, still owns a stake in a shipping company tied to associates of Vladimir Putin, despite the fact that her former role as a board member for the same company prompted six Senate Democrats to request an investigation into her apparent conflicts of interest last month. [ProPublica]

Ralph Alvarado, a Republican piece of shit from Winchester, said he will propose a constitutional amendment that would allow the legislature to set caps on how much people can sue doctors for. [WFPL]

Well before anyone thought of this place as the center of the tech economy, the Bay Area built ships. And it did so with the help of many parts of the country. [NY Times]

An infrastructure upgrade at the Greenup County Detention Center is nearing completion and early indications are the improvements are paying dividends. [Ashland Independent]

Mitch McConnell (R-Granny) took sharp aim Friday at Donald Trump’s former chief strategist, Stephen K. Bannon, as he looked ahead to some of the stark political and policy challenges the Republican Party will face in 2018. [WaPo]

The Judicial Nominating Commission, led by Chief Justice of Kentucky John D. Minton Jr., announced nominees to fill an upcoming vacancy on the Court of Appeals. [The Morehead News]

Eight northeastern states said on Tuesday they sued the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to force it to impose more stringent controls on a group of mostly Midwestern states whose air pollution they claim is being blown in their direction. [Reuters]

An appeal regarding a judge’s dismissal of a Barren Circuit Court lawsuit against the City of Glasgow by a former police spokeswoman is inching forward, with the brief having been filed presenting her side of why it is believed the judge’s decision should be overturned. [Glasgow Daily Times]

ObamaCare is showing its resilience after a year where in which it took a beating but survived. [The Hill]

A Croatian woman who tried to build a new life in Kentucky but was accused of war crimes in her old life has been sentenced to 14 years in prison in Bosnia-Herzegovina. A court convicted Azra Basic of committing crimes against Serbs during the vicious civil war in Bosnia that lasted from 1992 to 1995, the Associated Press reported Wednesday. [H-L]

It’s always the damn Nazis. A 17-year-old Virginia teen was charged with two counts of murder Saturday after he allegedly murdered his girlfriend’s parents. [HuffPo]

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Bevin Goes Full Whiny-Ass Titty Baby

TL;DR: Hoover had a bunch of stress because his ass got caught. That’s why he had a “heart issue” – that and probably decades of eating poorly and never getting exercise. Former Kentucky House Speaker Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, was released from the hospital Tuesday following testing for a heart related issue, according to a statement by House Speaker Pro Tempore David Osborne, R-Prospect. [H-L]

Donald Trump on Monday announced that he plans to nominate former pharmaceutical executive Alex Azar to replace Tom Price as health and human services secretary. [HuffPo]

Matt Bevin is that twat of a kid in school believing he’s special and deserves a better grade than he earned. It’s only a matter of time until he has his Julian Carroll or Jeff Hoover moment. [C-J/AKN]

Donald Trump, Jr. was in contact with WikiLeaks during the campaign. So keep screaming, mouth-breathers, cause the chickens are coming home to roost. [NBC News]

All three incumbent judge-executives in Boyd, Carter and Greenup counties are seeking re-election, and at least two of them will face challengers. [Ashland Independent]

The Republican National Committee is withdrawing its support for besieged Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, leaving him increasingly isolated as he confronts charges of sexual misconduct with teenagers. [Politico]

Local businessman and entrepreneur Harold M.D. Armstrong announced Monday his candidacy for mayor of Glasgow in the 2018 election. [Glasgow Daily Times]

RT America, the U.S. arm of the Kremlin-backed TV station RT, has registered with the U.S. Department of Justice as a “foreign agent” in the United States, the outlet’s editor in chief said on Monday. [Reuters]

Constituents of Sen. Steve West had the opportunity to hear his stance on Gov. Matt Bevin’s proposed pension bill during a question and answer session held Thursday at Rowan County Middle School. [The Morehead News]

Here’s your no shit, Sherlock, story of the week about Orange Dingus and the economy. [WaPo]

Matt Bevin’s efforts to overhaul Kentucky’s ailing pension systems took another twist Tuesday when his administration asked consultants to redo their analysis of his proposed changes to retirement benefits for public school teachers. [Richmond Register]

Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Tuesday denied, again, lying to Congress about the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia. He said he had forgotten about a campaign round-table in which an aide touted his Russian connections and suggested arranging a meeting for Donald J. Trump in Moscow. [NY Times]

This is the garbage Valarie Honeycutt Spears is covering these days. Never mind any of the truly significant educational stories or scandals. She’s pushing this bible bullshit. [H-L]

An upcoming case may clarify what kind of speech is permitted at the polls on Election Day. [HuffPo]

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Opposition Research Is Not Newsworthy

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Matt Bevin and the current crop of New Republicans have no idea what they’re doing on the tax front. Kentucky will never crawl out of this economic hole while they’re in power. [H-L]

Hillary Clinton had a very straightforward response when she was asked recently about Ivanka Trump’s role in her father’s administration. [HuffPo]

How is this big news? It’s not. It’s just plain stupid to act like it because this happens every day in politics and government. Sensationalist bullshit like this is a quick way to make people distrust media. That said – this is why people hire folks like *me* to do research. It happens in a way that can’t be easily identified as opposition research. Scott Reed had no clue what was going on and I was standing right in front of him. Same with Jack Conway. Only sloppy amateurs work like this. They probably charge outrageous amounts of cash to do half the work folks like me do for 20 times less. [C-J/AKN]

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Sunday suggested Trump would be open to remaining in the Paris climate deal under the right conditions. [The Hill]

Just what Eastern Kentucky needs! Gambling. Poor people need more ways to lose all of their money. A horse track that has been in the works for years to come to Corbin has taken a new step forward. [Richmond Register]

It is a political practice nearly as old as the United States – manipulating the boundaries of legislative districts to help one party tighten its grip on power in a move called partisan gerrymandering – and one the Supreme Court has never curbed. [Reuters]

King’s Daughters Medical Center and Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital are working to combat chronic health issues prevalent in the Appalachian region. [Ashland Independent]

Trump retweeted an animated GIF on Sunday morning that showed him hitting a golf ball at Hillary Clinton and knocking her to the ground, from an account which has previously trafficked in conspiracy theories and racism. [ThinkProgress]

Work is expected to begin later this fall on a project that will expand Hidden River Cave in downtown Horse Cave. A $350,575 bid for the project was awarded earlier this week by the Horse Cave City Council to Scott and Murphy Construction of Bowling Green. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The Senate majority leader spoke with Carl Hulse about his complicated relationship with the president, why the Democrats didn’t strike as good of a spending deal as they let on, and more. [NY Times]

The Morehead-Rowan County Airport Board announces a $70,000 state-funded project to replace the Runway End Identifier Lights (REIL). TEM Group of Louisville will perform the scheduled work in September. [The Morehead News]

If “war” against the Republican establishment is what former White House strategist Stephen K. Bannon wants, then war is what he will get. Deep-pocketed supporters of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and other GOP leaders have resolved to fight a protracted battle over the next year for the soul of the party in congressional primaries. [WaPo]

Disaster in 3, 2… Why even waste our time? [H-L]

Dumb. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters Wednesday that Donald Trump has done more for bipartisanship in the last eight days than former President Barack Obama did during his eight years in office. [HuffPo]

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First They Came For Media & Now They’re Coming For You

If you’re a Republican in Kentucky and refuse to stand up to loudly condemn Donald Trump at this juncture? Know that I will work until the day I die to ruin your professional political life. When reporters began to ask about whether the alt-right was behind the Charlottesville bloodshed, though, Trump unleashed a torrent of both-sides whataboutism and crankery. “What about the alt-left that came charging at the—as you say, the alt-right? Do they have any semblance of guilt?” he asked. Trump added that there were “some very fine people on both sides” at the protest, and that there was a peaceful march the night before. [Slate]

Of course Matt Bevin, a father of brown children, is so painfully stupid and borderline racist that he wants to keep monuments to slave masters and Confederate traitors. [H-L]

Richard Spencer, the 39-year-old Nazi, said Monday that he did not take Donald Trump’s statement denouncing hate groups seriously, and two of Spencer’s associates shared a somewhat similar sentiment with HuffPost. [HuffPo]

Fed up with soaring legal bills at the University of Louisville, a legislative panel Monday rejected a request to double university spending for outside attorneys to $2.5 million for 2016-18. [C-J/AKN]

The Nazi-supporting loons within the Trump Administration don’t want you to have the freedom of assembly or right to protest. [The Hill]

Dr. Maurice J. Oakley has spent 38 years looking out for the well-being of patients as a physician in Ashland. This past week, Oakley received what is arguably the most prestigious recognition possible for Kentucky physicians when the ophthalmologist was named the new president of the Kentucky Medical Association. [Ashland Independent]

Undeterred by violence over the planned removal of a Confederate statue in Charlottesville, Virginia, municipal leaders in cities across the United States said this week they would step up efforts to pull such monuments from public spaces. [Reuters]

This is one of the best things Barren County Schools has done in decades. Over 700 students at Barren County High School and the Trojan Academy ate breakfast at school Thursday morning, said CheyAnne Fant, director of 21st Century Learning and Nutritional Services for Barren County Schools. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The white supremacist forces arrayed in Charlottesville, Virginia, over the weekend — the largest gathering of its sort in at least a generation — represented a new incarnation of the white supremacy movement. Old-guard groups like the Ku Klux Klan, the Aryan Nations and the Nazi skinheads, which had long stood at the center of racist politics in America, were largely absent. [ProPublica]

Reaction in Kentucky political circles to the disturbing racial violence in Charlottesville, Va., this weekend reflected the horror and disgust felt by most of the nation. [Ronnie Ellis]

Trump shared on Twitter a cartoon on Tuesday morning of a train running over a person with a CNN logo covering the person’s head, three days after a fatal collision in Charlottesville, Va. Mr. Trump deleted his retweet minutes later. [NY Times]

Bessie Madden is more than familiar with the need for helping seniors in the Greenup area. Madden works at Greenup Meals on Wheels with a coalition of volunteers, delivering meals to seniors at their homes when they cannot prepare food for themselves. [Ashland Independent]

Three days after Donald Trump named his campaign foreign policy team in March 2016, the youngest of the new advisers sent an email to seven campaign officials with the subject line: “Meeting with Russian Leadership – Including Putin.” [WaPo]

Where there’s Ray Jones smoke, there’s Ray Jones fire. A Pikeville private detective who worked for the top Democrat in the Kentucky Senate pleaded guilty Monday in Franklin Circuit Court to four counts of attempting to intimidate an election officer and one count of attempting to interfere with an election. [H-L]

Hours after denouncing far-right extremists on Monday, Donald Trump retweeted a far-right “Pizzagate” conspiracy theorist known for disrupting a performance of “Julius Caesar” over the summer. [HuffPo]

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