Whitesburg: The Worst Place On Earth?

Way to go, Whitesburg! Now everyone thinks you’re a bunch of dumb effing rednecks. It’s like you’ve escaped from a television sitcom version of a Nathan Smith-owned trailer park and you’re spewing your stupid everywhere. Perfect stereotype: fat, white lady who sells guns is spewing fear and hatred while a confederate flag and anti-Muslim sign hang in the windows. [WKYT]

Rhyan Moseley, a rising eighth-grader at Lexington’s Carter G. Woodson Academy, has spent his summer in a program at Kentucky State University focused on topics including computer coding and programming, mathematics and game design. [H-L]

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter arrived unannounced in Baghdad on Thursday to assess the government’s progress in healing the country’s sectarian divisions and hear the latest on support for the Iraqi army’s coming attempt to recapture the key city of Ramadi from the Islamic State. [HuffPo]

The big city folks finally started paying attention to what’s going on in Boyd County. Willing to reject more than $1 million a year in revenues, elected officials in Boyd County have called on Kentucky regulators to close a stinky, mega dump that’s fed by daily East Coast trash trains. [C-J/AKN]

Donald Trump says the chances that he will launch a third-party White House run will “absolutely” increase if the Republican National Committee is unfair to him during the 2016 primary season. [The Hill]

Glasgow firefighters sometimes re-enter a burning house to rescue a family pet that did not make it out with its owners. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Even as immigration remains a hot topic in the U.S. presidential campaign, the number of people emigrating from Mexico to the United States, legally and illegally, has dropped sharply in recent years, research published Wednesday shows. [Reuters]

Just before the Greenup Meals on Wheels program went under, two groups stepped up to keep it afloat. [Ashland Independent]

GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush suggested that the United States should figure out a way to “phase out” Medicare, the federal program that provides insurance to more than 50 million elderly and disabled people, at a political event on Wednesday night. [ThinkProgress]

The Kentucky Arts Council has awarded more than $1.2 million in operating support to 91 arts organizations across the Commonwealth including two in Madison County for the 2016 fiscal year. [Richmond Register]

It’s illegal to hire immigrants without legal status. Yet the federal government employs thousands of undocumented workers. [NPR]

This is apparently a sports thing that happened. Rap star Drake has received a cease-and-desist letter from the University of Kentucky. [WKYT]

The documents also raise questions about the accuracy of the Red Cross’ count of how many Haitians it helped, concluding the figures on one project were “fairly meaningless.” [ProPublica]

Nathan Smith’s trailer park business just paid an $11,000 fine for sewage that’s been discharging into waterways for ages and ages. Yep, the big dogs behind Jack Conway and their spokespeople (KATHY FUCKING GROOB) are still all up in some literal shit. [WFPL]

Casey Davis & The Extreme Gay Panic

Casey Davis is so gay-panicked he can barely breathe. [H-L]

Some of the dumbest people on earth work on Fox News. [HuffPo]

Mitch McConnell spoke for more than 40 minutes Monday in Shepherdsville and never once mentioned Republican gubernatorial nominee Matt Bevin. [C-J/AKN]

Of course it’s because some butthurt politician complained. [The Hill]

The Frack Free Foothills community group have created an online petition requesting a moratorium of high volume hydraulic fracturing in the state until the implementation of all safety recommendations of the Oil and Gas Working Group. [Richmond Register]

U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton would increase the incentives for corporate whistleblowers to come forward to report financial misconduct, she said on Monday. [Reuters]

A former Glasgow police sergeant who was arrested in May on a charge of alcohol intoxication was arrested again Sunday morning, this time on a charge of fourth-degree assault, domestic violence, minor injury, according to a citation released Monday by the Glasgow Police Department. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Over eggs at a San Antonio café, a reporter listens as former law enforcement officials and one ex-drug cartel operative swap theories about El Chapo’s latest escape and what it says about the U.S. and Mexico. [ProPublica]

The Morehead Utility Plant Board (MUPB) has the green light to file loan applications for two significant sewer extension projects. [The Morehead News]

Ohio Gov. John Kasich is the newest entrant to the crowded Republican field for 2016, and his supporters are trying to steer the conversation towards his economic bona fides. But Kasich’s record on the economy has one major flaw. [ThinkProgress]

Mitch McConnell is voicing his support to get the ball rolling on tens of thousands of untested rape kits. [WHAS11]

Prof Stephen Hawking has launched a new effort to answer the question of whether there is life elsewhere in space. [BBC]

The most ancient Hebrew scroll since the Dead Sea Scrolls has been deciphered, thanks in part to students in the University of Kentucky computer science department, and its chairman, Brent Seales. [H-L]

Really, the dumbest people on earth. Fox News reporter John Roberts called host Greta van Susteren a conspiracy theorist for alleging that the family of the shooter who killed five soldiers in Chattanooga, Tennessee, last week may have concocted a story about his depression and substance abuse. [HuffPo]

UofL Messes Have Grown Since 2008

The University of Kentucky named longtime faculty member Lisa Cassis its vice president for research. [H-L]

The criminal justice system is “particularly skewed by race and by wealth,” President Barack Obama said on Tuesday in a speech at the NAACP Annual Convention in Philadelphia, citing a “long history of inequity in the criminal justice system in America.” [HuffPo]

Despite a consultant’s findings that University of Louisville President James Ramsey is paid above the market rate, the board of trustees’ compensation committee recommended Monday that he get a 6 percent merit pay increase and a bonus worth about $150,000. [C-J/AKN]

Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen urged lawmakers to tread lightly when it comes to overhauling the central bank, warning that proposed changes could undermine its ability to support the economy. [The Hill]

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway issued a press release Tuesday warning flood victims to be aware of potential price-gouging scams in areas affected by recent storms. [Ashland Independent]

A regional cap-and-trade program has added $1.3 billion in economic activity to nine New England and Mid-Atlantic states since 2011, while decreasing their carbon emissions by 15 percent, according to independent analysis released Tuesday. [ThinkProgress]

Will Russell sure is milking you-know-what out of his arrest in an attempt to gain publicity. [Glasgow Daily Times]

This sad Eastern Kentucky situation has made international news. Search teams in Kentucky are looking for six people missing after heavy floods that already killed two people. [BBC]

Rowan Fiscal Court hopes to cash in on state road and bridge funds before the end of the year. [The Morehead News]

The Supreme Court was definitive in its decision to legalize gay marriage nationwide, but what is far from clear is whether U.S. companies must offer corporate benefits to same-sex spouses. [Reuters]

Visitors to all five national parks in Kentucky can earn a special free commemorative patch in recognition of the National Park Service 2016 centennial. [WKYT]

Labor leaders said there was a clear understanding that no national unions would make an endorsement before July 30. But the American Federation of Teachers jumped the gun. [Politico]

It took only a few minutes for nearly everything James Martin owned to swirl away in a muddy torrent. [H-L]

For a while the Wisconsin governor, running for the GOP nomination for the presidency, has been engaging in his own version of dog-whistling to homophobes, as he and the GOP struggle with the reality that the base of their party is still in the Stone Age on LGBT rights, while most Americans support equality. [HuffPo]

Northern Kentucky Wingnut Freaks Out

Luke Barlow and Jim Meade of Bardstown met 48 years ago and married in 2009 in Iowa. But, as Barlow said 90 minutes after the Supreme Court declared their marriage legal in Kentucky, the two men had never held hands in public here. [H-L]

When President Barack Obama learned that the Supreme Court had rejected a major lawsuit against his signature health care law, White House photographer Pete Souza was there to capture the moment. [HuffPo]

Gov. Steve Beshear on Friday named Carol Martin “Bill” Gatton as an “honorary member of the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees for so long as he shall live.” [C-J/AKN]

The U.S. Supreme Court’s declaration on Friday of a right to same-sex marriage resolved a momentous question, yet the ruling left many others unanswered and is likely to spark future legal battles over gay rights. [Reuters]

Jail time was averted, at least for now, by an Amish father and son who refuse to pay fines for violating an Auburn city ordinance requiring owners to prevent waste from horses from falling on city streets. [BGDN]

North Carolina and Tennessee are the latest states to side with telecoms, which have long lobbied against allowing cities to become Internet providers. [ProPublica]

A Northern Kentucky clerk said no to all marriage licenses Friday after the U.S. Supreme Court declared that all states are required to marry gay couples and recognize marriages from other states. [Cincinnasti.com]

In Charleston, South Carolina, Civil War history and accounts of plantation life are a huge part of the town, and state, culture. An entire tourism business thrives off of showing visitors parts of this history – reenactments of Civil War battles, tours of mansions once owned by slave-owners, and staged scenes of home life for aristocrats of the period. It would be difficult for a culture that sees the Confederate flag as a symbol of Southern pride instead of slavery, not to manifest itself at school. [ThinkProgress]

In a rolling Kentucky pasture, the first few wooden ribs of a giant Noah’s ark tourist attraction have begun to sprout up. [Harlan Daily Enterprise]

NPR’s Audie Cornish and Rachel Martin read the concluding paragraph in Justice Anthony Kennedy’s opinion in Friday’s Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage. [NPR]

Berea Mayor Steve Connelly and a group of local representatives have launched the Berea Age-Friendly Survey 2015 to gather public input on making the city more Age-Friendly. [Richmond Register]

Every single US state fails to comply with global standards for police use of lethal force. [Mother Jones]

Rand Paul is looking for big green from the marijuana industry. Paul, Kentucky’s junior senator and a candidate for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, is scheduled to attend a fundraising reception next week at the National Cannabis Business Summit and Expo in Denver. [H-L]

President Barack Obama is a major fan of Sir David Attenborough, the celebrated British naturalist and TV host who has created and narrated numerous science and nature documentaries for the BBC. [HuffPo]

People Still Support That Racist Flag

“The Confederate Battle Flag means different things to different people, but the fact that it continues to be a painful reminder of racial oppression to many suggests to me at least that it’s time to move beyond it, and that the time for a state to fly it has long since passed. There should be no confusion in anyone’s mind that as a people we’re united in our determination to put that part of our history behind us.” [Mitch McConnell]

The University of Kentucky has twice violated the state’s open-records law since 2014, according to opinions released Monday by the Kentucky attorney general’s office. [H-L]

An Afghan family returning to their home after fleeing a possible military operation struck a roadside bomb Saturday in the country’s south, killing at least 12 of them and wounding eight, authorities said. [HuffPo]

Aetna Inc. has made a takeover bid for Louisville-based health care giant Humana, increasing speculation that one of the city’s biggest employers is about to change hands. [C-J/AKN]

With the U.S. Supreme Court expected to rule by the end of the month on whether same-sex marriage is legal, many Christian evangelicals say they would refuse to obey a decision allowing gay unions. [Reuters]

Under certain scenarios, a large percentage of Americans could subsist on a diet made up of mostly local food, according to a new study. [WFPL]

America earns $3 billion a year charging strapped college parents above-market interest. “It’s like ‘The Sopranos,’ except it’s the government.” [Politico]

The Governor’s Medal of Valor was presented posthumously to Delano G. Powell, a Kentucky State Trooper killed in the line of duty in 1965, at a ceremony held in Lexington Thursday. [Richmond Register]

Government forces in northern Afghanistan launch a counter-offensive against the Taliban after they took control of a key district. [BBC]

The Kentucky Community and Technical College System and Shaping Our Appalachian Region have a three-year strategic partnership designed to provide eastern Kentucky residents with the educational opportunities that lead to good jobs. [Ashland Independent]

If the court hands a victory to Republicans by ending subsidies for 6.4 million Americans, Republicans in Congress will be left scrambling to come up with a new game plan. Because they still don’t have a game plan. [ThinkProgress]

Bill Redwine, chair of the Rowan County Board of Education, announced at the regular meeting Tuesday that he is resigning effective June 30. [The Morehead News]

Nearly two centuries before Dylann Roof, the state of South Carolina conducted its own massacre of Emanuel AME Church members. Roof, who embraced white supremacy, killed nine church members Wednesday evening. The white supremacist-controlled state of South Carolina killed 35. [The Intercept]

C-SPAN will participate in a press conference on Monday with Lexington Mayor Jim Gray and Time Warner Cable representatives to announce details about its week-long visit to Lexington to report on Lexington’s history and literary life. [H-L]

On the morning of December 14, 2012, as news trickled in painfully slowly about a shooting at an elementary school in Connecticut, aides gathered in the White House to chart out a response. [HuffPo]

Airline? In Pikeville? Well, About That…

Won’t say we told you so, but… Appalachian Air, and Public Charters, Inc., will end service to the Pikeville- Pike County Regional Airport in July with the final date of service to be announced soon. [H-L]

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter announced Tuesday that the Pentagon has added “sexual orientation” as a protected class under its Military Equal Opportunity Policy. [HuffPo]

Beve Cotton ticked off all the ways his body is failing him — high blood pressure, bone spurs, circulation problems, pinched nerves, diverticulitis, cataracts and five broken vertebrae from a car wreck. [C-J/AKN]

President Obama on Tuesday made an emotional plea to protect the Affordable Care Act just weeks before the law could face its biggest legal challenge to date. [The Hill]

Opponents of a proposed Environmental Protection Agency rule on carbon emissions by power plants lost an initial round Tuesday when a federal appeals court said it cannot review a regulation that doesn’t yet exist. [Ronnie Ellis]

Coal companies and 14 states sued to stop a draft regulation to cut greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, a priority for the Obama administration. [NY Times]

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) held a Strategic Planning Listening Session Thursday at the Morehead Conference Center. [The Morehead News]

Student poverty is a major barrier to learning, according to teachers polled in a new national survey of educators. [WaPo]

In 25 years, Kentucky’s energy landscape will look dramatically different than it does now. [WFPL]

U.S. stocks rose slightly on Tuesday, bouncing back partially from the previous day’s decline as higher oil prices helped energy shares, but the dollar slipped on global economic concerns. [Reuters]

Here’s the latest column Greg Stumbo’s Legislative Research Commission staffers have written for him. [Floyd County Times]

The national high school graduation rate is an impressive 81 percent. So impressive, President Obama highlighted it in his State of the Union address this year: “Our high school graduation rate has hit an all-time high.” [NPR]

Next week, the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees is expected to approve UK’s largest budget ever, a $3.4 billion document that reflects a burgeoning health care enterprise paired with continued reliance on tuition paid by out-of-state students. [H-L]

Investigative journalist Bob Woodward on Tuesday rebutted former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld’s claims that he had always been skeptical about U.S. efforts to promote democracy in Iraq following the 2003 invasion. [HuffPo]

Don’t Lock Meemaw In Your Basement

Jean Ritchie, a daughter of Eastern Kentucky and “The Mother of Folk,” who introduced mountain dulcimer music to the outside world, died Monday at her home in Berea. [H-L]

Ten months into the U.S.-led war against the Islamic State, Congress still has neither debated it nor voted to authorize it. But on Tuesday, a House committee decided to do something about that: It passed a measure saying Congress should do something about that. [HuffPo]

Despite a fitful start, billionaire coal operator and West Virginia gubernatorial candidate Jim Justice is making progress in addressing a record number of environmental violations at his Kentucky strip mines, state regulators say. [C-J/AKN]

The United States and European Union aren’t doing enough to address emissions from land use — such as agriculture — in their carbon reduction plans for the upcoming climate talks in Paris, France, according to a new report. [ThinkProgress]

You can’t even imprison old ladies in your basement these days. Thanks, Obama. A Richmond man was arrested Monday after imprisoning his 84-year-old aunt in a chair in the basement of their residence, according to a Richmond Police Department press release. [Richmond Register]

A group of scientists and economists is calling for the equivalent of the Apollo space programme to produce cheap, clean energy. [BBC]

After hearing about services for Court Appointed Special Advocates that represent abused and neglected children in the court system, Ashland Rotarians had plenty of questions. [Ashland Independent]

Most of the glaciers in the Mount Everest region will disappear or drastically retreat as temperatures increase with climate change over the next century, according to a group of international researchers. [Mother Jones]

For centuries, people have followed trails in southcentral Kentucky, including naturalist and conservationist John Muir, who began hiking the countryside in the late 1800s, even walking through Elizabethtown to Mammoth Cave National Park. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Whistleblower website WikiLeaks offered a $100,000 bounty for copies of a Pacific trade pact that is a central plank of President Barack Obama’s diplomatic pivot to Asia on Tuesday. [Reuters]

USDA Rural Development awarded a $50,000 grant to the Rowan County Sheriff’s Department to help purchase four new vehicles. [The Morehead News]

New York City, Baltimore and other major cities have seen a recent rise in gun violence. The uptick has raised the alarm for many police departments that worry the summer months may make the problem worse. [NPR]

The University of Kentucky’s Gatton College of Business and Economics has wrapped up a 10-year, $2.5 million donation from BB&T that will result in a new program on capitalism and funding toward the college’s $65 million renovation. But Gatton officials stepped back from the more controversial aspects of the original 2004 agreement, including a requirement for an Ayn Rand reading room, named for the novelist and free market philosopher. [H-L]

The leaders of six of Europe’s largest oil producers are calling for a plan to price planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions, citing climate change as “a critical challenge for our world.” [HuffPo]