What?! Tax Cuts Are Expensive?! Why…

A group that works against government endorsement of religion has renewed a complaint about prayers before Bell County High School home football games. [H-L]

If Vice President Joe Biden decides to jump into the presidential race, his decision will be driven, he has said in recent conversations, by a belief that Hillary Clinton’s background won’t allow her to be a credible messenger when it comes to income inequality, which Biden sees as a defining issue. [HuffPo]

An assistant commonwealth’s attorney resigned Monday, months after a circuit court judge dismissed one of his cases as a sanction for “deliberately” withholding evidence. [C-J/AKN]

From the Department of Things Ken Ham Wouldn’t Understand… German scientists have found an unusually long trail of footprints from a 30-tonne dinosaur in an abandoned quarry in Lower Saxony, a discovery they think could be around 145 million years old. [Reuters]

The Perry County Board of Education had a special called board meeting on August 13. The primary reason for the meeting was the consideration and approval of the of the 2015-2016 tax rates. [Hazard Herald]

A new probe that sticks to blood clots so they can be seen in a PET scan has proved successful in rats – and will be tested in humans later this year, according to researchers in the US. [BBC]

Attorneys who successfully challenged Kentucky’s ban on same-sex marriage have submitted a bill for more than $2 million in legal fees, court costs and related expenses. The state of Kentucky, as the losing party in the case, gets stuck with the tab under federal civil-rights law. [Ashland Independent]

A deal struck between drugmakers AbbVie and United Therapeutics Wednesday set a record price for a voucher that can be redeemed for a fast-track review of a new medicine by the Food and Drug Administration. [NPR]

As members of the Republican Party of Kentucky debated on Saturday whether to approve a rule change creating a presidential caucus in March — at Sen. Rand Paul’s request — one of the biggest selling points was that the caucus would help build the party. [WFPL]

The director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), who was appointed by GOP lawmakers earlier this year, said Tuesday that tax cuts don’t pay for themselves. [The Hill]

Sen. Mitch McConnell spoke to several Tuesday in Grayson County about the biggest issues in Washington right now. [WBKO]

There are signs that Jeb Bush’s fundraising juggernaut is losing some momentum, after banking a stunning $120 million for his campaign and super PAC in the first half of the year. [Politico]

Nothing but wasted time and money. The city of Somerset will drop a lawsuit challenging the state auditor’s authority to do special examinations of cities, Mayor Eddie Girdler announced Monday. [H-L]

President Barack Obama spoke candidly about his critics at a fundraising event on Monday evening. [HuffPo]

Rand & RPK Melted Everybody’s Brain

HELP PROTECT OUR SOURCES! Stop the Montgomery County-Joshua Powell-Phil Rison insanity! [CLICK HERE]

Magoffin County Judge-Executive Charles “Doc” Hardin has hired a man with a felony vote-buying conviction to be an administrative assistant in his office. [H-L]

Jeb Bush said while he supports granting birthright citizenship to the children of immigrants, the policy needs “greater enforcement” to prevent “abuse.” [HuffPo]

These poor, dumb people think their religion is under threat because their government isn’t permitted to discriminate on the basis of hate. Get it together, you jackasses, because you’re really harming what little bit of a positive image Kentucky was developing. [C-J/AKN]

Rand Paul (R-Cookie Tree) can run for both the White House and to keep his Senate seat in 2016, the Republican Party in Kentucky decided Saturday. [The Hill]

Richard Nelson, founder and executive director of the Commonwealth Policy Center, told the group of people who came Thursday evening to hear him at Immanuel Baptist Church that our culture is in a moral freefall and in a period of spiritual darkness. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The Kentucky GOP’s central committee voted Saturday to adopt a presidential caucus system next year, clearing the way Republican Sen. Rand Paul to run for president and reelection at the same time. [Politico]

This is written on Friday, the day before Kentucky Republicans were to decide whether to conduct a presidential caucus next year rather than a primary. [Ronnie Ellis]

While Donald Trump’s recent position paper on immigration dominates headlines, a new study of unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. digs into the latest numbers. [NPR]

The EPA recently announced the Clean Power Plan, which entails stricter emissions standards for states, and the Power+ Plan, which promises $1 billion in federal money to help coal country towns get back on their feet. I support both these plans wholeheartedly. They’re good for Kentucky communities, good for the economy, and good for the environment. [Drew Curtis]

Two American women have passed the gruelling training programme of the US Army Rangers – one of the military’s most elite special operations forces. [BBC]

Alison Daddy’s Name Grimes on Rand Paul and RPK this weekend: “It is unfortunate that today a few insiders were able to disenfranchise over 1.2 million Republican voters. One candidate should not be able to buy an election. Democracy demands that all eligible Kentuckians be a part of the election process. That didn’t happen today and won’t happen with a caucus.” [Press Release]

The phone rings just as Katrina Fingerson and Latoya McClary are about to leave to start their shift at the Goddard Riverside Community Center. [ThinkProgress]

It was like a Klan rally with an extra dose of fat, white homophobia. Headlined by Bob Stivers and Matt Bevin, of course. [H-L]

Americans use prescription drugs and they know these medicines help people, but they still don’t care much for pharmaceutical companies and think the industry is too money-hungry, according to a new survey. [HuffPo]

Even The Muslins Love The Environment

HELP PROTECT OUR SOURCES! Stop the Montgomery County-Joshua Powell-Phil Rison insanity! [CLICK HERE]

A federal judge on Wednesday set an Aug. 31 deadline for his delay in ordering Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis to resume issuing marriage licenses. [H-L]

More than $1 billion in U.S. military equipment quietly began flowing to the Lebanese military over the last year. [HuffPo]

The operators of the massive, troubled and stinky landfill near Ashland, Ky., announced Tuesday that they will phase out all rail deliveries of out-of-state trash by the end of next year. [C-J/AKN]

The month before he killed 16 Afghan civilians in a shooting rampage, Army Staff Sergeant Robert Bales bloodied the nose of an Afghan truck driver in an assault that was not reported to his camp commanders, according to a report released on Tuesday. [Reuters]

During a visit with education leaders in Louisville on Tuesday, the Republican nominee for Kentucky governor talked about preschool, teacher pensions and charter schools. Matt Bevin met with the group of about 20 educators and community officials at the Jefferson County Public Schools Van Hoose Education Center for over an hour, outlining some of his goals for education in the state. [WDRB]

Birthright citizenship is enshrined in the 14th Amendment, but Donald Trump and other candidates are keeping alive the idea that some Americans should not have equal rights at birth. [The Nation]

The members of the Kentucky Coal Association want a private audience with the two major-party gubernatorial candidates, and it looks like they will get it. [Hopkinsville New Era]

Islamic leaders issued a Climate Change Declaration calling for world governments to adopt a new international climate agreement that would phase out fossil fuels and limit global warming to 1.5°C to 2°C. The collective statement of the leaders from 20 countries lays out a deadline for wealthy and oil-producing nations to phase out all greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. [International Business Times]

Kentucky’s preliminary July unemployment rate rose slightly to a seasonally adjusted 5.2 percent from a revised 5.1 percent in June 2015, and remained below the national rate, according to the Office of Employment and Training (OET), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. [Press Release]

New disclosures about the National Security Agency’s partnership with AT&T could reignite constitutional challenges to the spy agency’s efforts to wiretap the Internet. [ProPublica]

The hardest thing Phillip R. Patton has had to do in his 14-year tenure as a circuit court judge, he said, was “probably sentencing 16-year-old youthful offenders to live in the penitentiary.” And he’s had to do that several times with youths that were tried as adults, he said. [Glasgow Daily Times]

For the first time this presidential election cycle, six Republican candidates will be forced to talk about education — an issue that has taken a backseat to others for the last few election cycles. [Politico]

Rand Paul is ratcheting up pressure on Kentucky Republicans who will vote Saturday on whether to hold a presidential preference caucus next year. [H-L]

Scientists at Ohio State University say they’ve grown the first near-complete human brain in a lab. [HuffPo]

Kim Davis Is Still The Absolute Worst

HELP PROTECT OUR SOURCES! Stop the Montgomery County-Joshua Powell-Phil Rison insanity! [CLICK HERE]

In the early 1880s, James M. Bond walked from Barbourville to Berea, leading a young steer that he sold to pay for tuition. Bond, who was born into slavery, graduated from Berea and later from Oberlin College with a divinity degree. [H-L]

For more than 20 years, conservative Christians have been building the case that laws protecting gay people and legalizing same-sex marriage place an unconstitutional burden on the rights of religious people who believe homosexuality is a sin. [HuffPo]

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he still supports the idea of a caucus for Kentucky Republicans to choose their presidential nominee despite Sen. Rand Paul’s stalled campaign. [C-J/AKN]

The poor are treated like human ATM machines, and our politicians are actively encouraging their exploitation. In the 1960s, the Lyndon Johnson administration launched an official War on Poverty. Needless to say, poverty has emerged victorious. [Salon]

The attorney for Freddie Travis, who has sued Glasgow Independent Schools’ Board of Education claiming it violated Kentucky’s open meetings law, has filed a response to the board’s counterclaim against Travis. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is promising to level the playing field for the middle class in a new campaign ad released on Tuesday. [The Hill]

Big Run Landfill will begin cutting back rail-borne garbage from New York and New Jersey almost immediately and will eliminate it completely by the end of 2016, parent company EnviroSolutions announced Tuesday. [Ashland Independent]

Americans broadly support providing federal funding for free women’s health exams, screenings and contraception services, a Reuters/Ipsos poll has found, suggesting that Republicans could be in risky territory if they continue criticizing Planned Parenthood as a key part of 2016 campaigns. [Reuters]

Eastern Kentucky University President Michel Benson reminded faculty and staff at the University’s annual fall convocation Tuesday, “We can control our own destiny.” [Richmond Register]

Donald Trump clashed with Bill O’Reilly on Tuesday night over the part of his immigration plan that would take away citizenship from the children who were born in the United States but whose parents came to the country illegally. [Politico]

An old distillery in Kentucky soon will start spirits production again. In May 2014, Peristyle LLC announced plans to restore and reopen the historic Old Taylor Distillery in Woodford County. Work has been taking place at the facility since. [Business First]

Donald Trump regularly boasts that he was opposed to the Iraq War. [Mother Jones]

A Lexington council meeting to discuss raising the minimum wage will be postponed from Thursday until Sept. 10. [H-L]

Discussions of economic issues in policy circles often suffer from a “which way is up?” dilemma; it’s not clear what the problem is that needs to be solved. The massive fretting over China’s devaluation of its currency last week is one such example. [HuffPo]

The Rand Paul-RPK Circus Has Arrived

Rand, Rand, Rand.

You’re acting like you’re dumber than Matt Bevin.

There’s this:

Although U.S. Sen. Rand Paul wrote in a letter last week to nearly 350 members of the Republican Party of Kentucky’s central committee that he had transferred $250,000 to a state GOP account to cover the initial costs of holding a presidential caucus next year, Paul hasn’t provided a dime, committee members told the Herald-Leader on Tuesday.

In his letter, which was mailed about a week before the committee is to vote on whether to move forward with the caucus that Paul has requested, Paul wrote that he already had “transferred $250,000 in an RPK account to begin the funding.”

“Very little of the funding is needed in August, but I wanted to make sure there was plenty in there as we move forward,” Paul wrote.

That is not what happened.

And this:

Despite what he said in a letter to members of the Republican Central Committee days ago, Sen. Rand Paul has not transferred $250,000 to the Republican Party of Kentucky to help pay for the presidential caucuses Paul is seeking.

-SNIP-

Paul said in a letter to members of the 334-member committee this weekend that to make sure that the caucuses would be funded at no cost to the Republican Party of Kentucky, “I have transferred $250,000 in an RPK account to begin the funding. Very little of the funding is needed this August, but I wanted to make sure there was plenty in there as we move forward.”

-SNIP-

Some leading Republicans expressed concerns about the change, primarily over cost for caucuses – estimated at $500,000 – which would have to be paid for by the party.

Paul’s letter said that in addition to the initial down payment of $250,000, he would provide another $200,000 in the fall. The balance of the cost would be covered by a $15,000 filing fee that the caucuses plan would charge each presidential candidate.

Lasley said, “I think the biggest questions in all this involve the payment beyond the initial $250,000. How will that work and when will that additional $200,000 be transferred.”

Safe to say it’s not a good week for Rand Paul.

Many Republicans are fuming, some suggesting it’s time for him to move on from politics.

The RPK circus has come to town, kids, so get the popcorn ready!

Way To Go, State Board Of Education

HELP PROTECT OUR SOURCES! Stop the Montgomery County-Joshua Powell-Phil Rison insanity! [CLICK HERE]

Rand Paul has transferred $250,000 to the Republican Party of Kentucky as a down payment on the presidential caucuses he has asked the party to conduct next March, Paul told members of the state party’s central committee Monday in an email. [H-L]

The U.S. Department of Defense is sending a team to military installations in Kansas and South Carolina to investigate the possibility of relocating some Guantanamo Bay prisoners to U.S. soil, media outlets reported on Saturday. [HuffPo]

Changes are in the works to make the 2015 Kentucky State Fair, which opens Thursday, a bigger draw by offering new promotions, discounts and a strong concert lineup. [C-J/AKN]

The National Security Agency’s ability to spy on vast quantities of Internet traffic passing through the United States has relied on its extraordinary, decades-long partnership with a single company: the telecom giant AT&T. [NY Times]

The Barren County Board of Education will consider up to a 4 percent increase in the county property tax rate after voting unanimously against a motion to maintain the current tax revenue rate during Thursday’s regular meeting. [Glasgow Daily Times]

This past week saw a lot of changes in the world markets, with China’s currency devaluation and approval of another Greek bailout. [NPR]

A former Silver Creek Elementary School Parent-Teacher Organization treasurer was sentenced to five years in prison Thursday. [Richmond Register]

Less than a month after one of the University of Cincinnati’s police officers shot and killed an unarmed driver who was not a student during a traffic stop, the school said on Friday it would resume off-campus patrols. [Reuters]

A woman who lived in Kentucky is facing felony abuse charges in Michigan after police found her disabled sister living in filthy conditions while locked in a closet. [WKYT]

After a ProPublica investigation of USA Discounters’ lending practices last summer, a barrage of lawsuits, regulatory inquiries and changes to Defense Department policies followed. [ProPublica]

The Kentucky Board of Education violated the state’s open meeting law earlier this year in its quest to find a firm to assist in searching for a new education commissioner. [WDRB]

Former Florida governor and GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush had an awkward conversation about Common Core education standards this week, calling the initiative’s name “poisonous” while attempting to appeal to conservatives who oppose the program — even though he supports it. [ThinkProgress]

Mitch McConnell said Monday that he hopes Congress can override a veto of a resolution that disapproves of President Barack Obama’s nuclear deal with the Iranians, but he acknowledged that the president has “still got a great likelihood of success.” [H-L]

This will freak Ken Ham out… Apes may be much closer to human speech than we realized. [HuffPo]

Matt Bevin Is Once Again The Worst

HELP PROTECT OUR SOURCES! Stop the Montgomery County-Joshua Powell-Phil Rison insanity! [CLICK HERE]

There were tough questions in March; there are tougher questions now. Over the course of two hours this spring, the Republican Party of Kentucky’s executive committee sat in a steamy room in Bowling Green posing questions about the presidential preference caucus U.S. Sen. Rand Paul was asking them to unanimously approve. [H-L]

Your tax dollars at work — all so Jack can score a few extra political points. Fifteen state attorneys general petitioned a federal court in Washington on Thursday to block new U.S. rules to curb carbon emissions from power plants, in the first of several expected legal challenges to the Obama administration measure. [HuffPo]

Republican gubernatorial nominee Matt Bevin said Friday that elected officials have freedom of religion protections even when doing their jobs and that Gov. Steve Beshear should issue an executive order “to clarify that” and relieve county clerks of the responsibility of issuing marriage licenses. [C-J/AKN]

The U.S. Department of Justice says that banning people from sleeping in public could be a violation of their constitutional rights. [Time]

Preliminary estimates by a group of independent economists suggest the state will end the current fiscal year June 30, 2016, with a surplus of $219 million. [Ronnie Ellis]

Donald Trump lashed out as his Republican presidential rivals at a campaign rally in New Hampshire on Friday evening. [The Hill]

The Kentucky Court of Appeals will not hear oral arguments in the case of a Louisville man who was convicted of fatally shooting a Metcalfe County man in 2013 through the front door of his home in the Wisdom community. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The U.S. Federal Reserve will probably raise interest rates twice this year, with the first increase in almost a decade coming as early as next month, according to a Reuters poll of economists published on Thursday. [Reuters]

An Eastern Kentucky city has become the first to go on record supporting President Obama’s coalfield economic plan, and others may follow soon. [WFPL]

A week after a pair of indictments rocked Rand Paul’s world, the balance of power is shifting inside the Kentucky senator’s political machine. [Politico]

Looks like the Coal Association used its paid PR/political operatives to get on the teevee to promote its dying industry again. [CN|Toot]

You probably missed another fun Rand Paul photo op this weekend. Because… losing? Something. Yes, it’s a photo op. Otherwise media outlets wouldn’t send folks to document the trip. [WaPo]

A Kentucky clerk who defied a federal judge’s order to issue marriage licenses and turned away four gay couples has until Monday to convince the judge to delay his mandate. [H-L]

The share of Americans behind on their student loan payments jumped over the past year despite the improving economy. [HuffPo]