Funtimes At The New Ark Park?

If you worry the Creation Museum and its new Noah’s Ark theme park will cause outsiders to think Kentuckians are a bunch of anti-science rubes, at least take comfort in this: Lexington was home to perhaps America’s greatest evolutionary biologist. [H-L]

Two separate attempts to recognize lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals in the Republican Party platform ― a statement of its core ideas and principles ― were voted down by GOP delegates on Tuesday. [HuffPo]

Just wait til the gays wake up to the reality that Bevin has turned UofL into Six Flags Over Jesus University. The University of Louisville Faculty Senate approved a statement Wednesday saying that Gov. Matt Bevin’s recent orders abolishing the Board of Trustees and appointing his own in its place “compromise” the board’s independence and “may affect the institutional ideal of democratically-shared governance at the university.” [C-J/AKN]

The phone would ring almost every week with fundraising appeals from a super PAC called Voters for Hillary. Margo Marquess and her husband, Amitava Gupta, backed the presidential campaign of the former Secretary of State, so they were happy to write checks. In all, they gave $6,000. [ProPublica]

Metcalfe County magistrates opened bids for three bridge projects on Monday, and awarded contracts two companies. Judge-Executive Greg Wilson explained that the county had two bridges, one on Pine Hill Road and another on Jack Shaw Road, that were washed out in 2015 during heavy rainfalls. [Glasgow Daily Times]

It sure is easy for uptight white guys to minimize the African American experience because it makes them uncomfortable. [The Hill]

Doug Cobb, the Louisville businessman who drew recent attention for sharing political opinions on Twitter that are far outside the mainstream, has declined an appointment to the University of Louisville Board of Trustees, according to Gov. Matt Bevin’s office. By “outside the mainstream”? They mean jacked up, homophobic and backwater. [WFPL]

At the theme park Ark Encounter, which opened last week in Williamstown, Kentucky, thousands of visitors can step inside a recreation of Noah’s Ark—built to spec as detailed in the Bible. Inside, exhibits attempt to explain how two of each animal might have fit on the boat, while visitors can pick up souvenirs at the gift shop or eat at a 700-person restaurant on the ship. [FastCo]

Addia Wuchner loves to preach the bullshit of compassionate conservatism but she wouldn’t know what was right for Kentucky’s Medicaid program if it hit her square in her xenophobic face. She’s part of the reason so many Kentuckians remain impoverished, under educated and afraid. [HEAD-DESK]

How American politics went insane. It happened gradually – and until the U.S. figures out how to treat the problem, it will only get worse. [The Atlantic]

I participated in this program something like 20 years ago and think everyone in Eastern Kentucky should get involved. Each September, hundreds of Appalachian citizen leaders travel to Berea College to participate in the Brushy Fork Annual Institute. Widely recognized as one of the premier leadership and networking conferences in Appalachia, the Institute helps residents explore regional issues and develop skills to strengthen their organizations and communities. [Hazard Herald]

The violence in Dallas last week is intensifying worries in Cleveland about visitors and protesters taking firearms downtown during the Republican National Convention, where thousands of people plan to demonstrate. [NY Times]

Central Kentucky religious leaders and Democrats spoke against presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump at Blue Grass Airport Monday afternoon, just hours before he landed in Lexington for a private fundraiser. [H-L]

A black doctor who treated shooting victims of a Dallas attack that left five police officers dead spoke out Monday on the fraught relationship between people of color and law enforcement. [HuffPo]

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Which News Dumps Will Hit Today?

This is what you call good old boy butthurt. Officials with the Bluegrass Area Development District said Tuesday they will continue to pay staff through July as they fight the state’s attempt to take away millions of dollars in federal and state funding for aging and workforce programs by Friday. [H-L]

Robert Murray, owner of the country’s largest private coal company, wasted no time pointing the finger when he announced plans earlier this week to lay off as many as 4,400 workers, or 80 percent of his workforce. [HuffPo]

Matt Bevin’s halfwit staffers spent years attacking Steve Beshear for not appointing enough minorities for the University of Louisville’s board. So what do they do? They don’t find any minority appointees. Fascinating how these people operate. Dumber than you could have ever imaged. Not corrupt – dumb. Deeply, deeply dumb. [C-J/AKN]

A review of campaign finance records by The Hill shows that the practice of skirting or openly flouting the contractor ban has become widespread in both congressional and presidential politics. [The Hill]

Any hopes for a better reception for Gov. Matt Bevin’s proposed changes to expanded Medicaid in Kentucky vanished pretty quickly at a second public hearing here Wednesday. [Ronnie Ellis]

South Carolina fire officials decided to make sprinklers mandatory in new homes. Homebuilders overturned the rule with help behind the scenes from Gov. Nikki Haley. It was one more win for an industry that has spent millions of dollars in state capitals to block a life-saving upgrade included in the nation’s model building code. [ProPublica]

Liberal state lawmakers have for 16 years pushed for a bill that would amend Kentucky’s civil rights code to protect people from discrimination in the workplace, housing and other areas based on their sexual orientation. [WFPL]

According to experts, white supremacy has experienced a renaissance in the last two years, reaching levels of popularity and influence not seen since the late-1960s. [ThinkProgress]

The Eastern Kentucky Veterans Center in Hazard was presented with a $2,500 check from the County Clerk’s Association on Monday to help the center fund an Independence Day celebration for citizens who truly represent our nation’s liberty and patriotic pride; our veterans. [Hazard Herald]

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on Wednesday rejected criticism of his campaign tactics, in a wide-ranging speech defending his team’s use of a Jewish star and his own praise of the late Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein. [Reuters]

The Bank of Harlan has been acquired by Monticello Bankshares Inc. in a deal that will see the merger of the two financial institutions. [Harlan Daily Enterprise]

Donald Trump has to be one of the dumbest people in history. [Politico]

State alcohol regulators prepared a new map a couple of months ago showing Kentucky’s jumble of legally dry, wet and partially wet cities and counties, but it’s already out of date. [H-L]

The Iraqi man who was filmed attacking Saddam Hussein’s statue with a sledgehammer when U.S. troops stormed into Baghdad in 2003 said Iraq was in a better shape under his rule and George W. Bush and Tony Blair should be put on trial “for ruining” it. [HuffPo]

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Everyone Has Bevin Ignorance Fatigue

Aren’t you glad the most important newspaper in the state didn’t die in a fire? [H-L]

Donald Trump’s presidential campaign paid more than $1 million last month to companies controlled by the presumptive GOP presidential nominee, according to reports the Trump campaign filed late Monday with the Federal Election Commission. [HuffPo]

The new executive director of Kentucky’s Office of Highway Safety was charged with child endangerment in 2007 after she allegedly smoked crack cocaine in her car in front of her two-month-old daughter. [C-J/AKN]

An openly gay candidate for the White House is still a long shot, but voters under 40 are a lot more enthusiastic about the prospect than their elders are. [Rasmussen Reports]

A man who police say escaped from a Georgia prison in 1979 and eluded authorities for nearly four decades has been arrested in eastern Kentucky. [Richmond Register]

A few years ago, I was in the middle of an interview with Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., when President Barack Obama called. Then the minority leader, McConnell walked across his spacious office in the United States Capitol to his desk and picked up the phone. [James R. Carroll]

Children bounced on inflatables and screamed on carnival rides as Stephen Salyers entertained a large crowd Friday evening at Russell Railroad Days. The annual festival, on its 6th year after a hiatus, had a crowd Friday evening as performers took to the stage and children ran around playing games and ate cotton candy. [Ashland Independent]

“Students and taxpayers have paid the price” for the failures of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools, she wrote in an accompanying letter to the U.S. Secretary of Education. Warren urged the Department of Education to take “strong, aggressive action to hold ACICS accountable.” [ProPublica]

Nineteen law enforcement officers from all across the world made the trek to Morehead this week to participate in a National Tactical Officers Association (NTOA) active shooter training. [The Morehead News]

Charles Koch, facing questions about his commitment to political spending, late last month donated $3 million to a super PAC spending heavily to protect the Republican Senate majority, according to a Federal Election Commission report set to be filed in the coming days. [Politico]

Officials with one of the four counties that had a contract with the Edmonson County Animal Shelter in the Bee Springs community of Edmonson County have agreed to enter into a contract with the Barren River Animal Welfare Association to bring their dogs to Glasgow. [Glasgow Daily Times]

For example, while 72 percent of Republicans believe that discrimination against whites has become as bad as discrimination against blacks and other minority groups, among Trump supporters the number is 81 percent. [WaPo]

The board of the Bluegrass Area Development District voted Wednesday to pursue appealing the state’s decision to yank its designation as an area agency on aging. [H-L]

Donald Trump reported on Monday night that his campaign is virtually broke. Having raised roughly $3 million in the month of May, he retained just $1.28 million in cash on hand — a sum better suited for a competitive House race than a run for the presidency. [HuffPo]

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Jim Ramsey Dumpster Fire Burns On

Jim. Ramsey. Schadenfreude. [H-L]

Apple will not contribute funds or other resources for the Republican National Convention due to presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump’s prejudiced remarks, Politico reported on Saturday. [HuffPo]

This is what lobbyists can get you. Norton Healthcare has secured city agreement to issue up to $725 million in tax-exempt bonds, with much of the proceeds targeted for helping to pay for a long list of capital projects. [C-J/AKN]

Democrats want new funding in the legislative response to the opioid epidemic. [The Hill]

A write-in candidate is joining the race for Kentucky’s 1st District Congressional seat, held by retiring Congressman Ed Whitfield. [WKMS]

Although Sen. Rand Paul ended his presidential bid four months ago, a pro-Paul super PAC sounds particularly presidential in a new TV ad — this time, in slamming likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. [Public Integrity]

This should be filled with schadenfreude. Long-time Republican activist and public relations executive Scott Jennings will emcee this year’s Fancy Farm Picnic political speaking on Aug. 6. [Ronnie Ellis]

Gun control, homegrown extremism, homophobic violence and the war against Islamic State have all been highlighted by the Orlando nightclub massacre, but deadlock in Washington means major legislation will probably have to wait until after the November election. [The Guardian]

Eastern Kentucky – where you still can’t mention the LGBT community in a column about the deadliest firearm attack on the gay community in this country’s history. [Adam Black]

Funerals for two of the 49 victims killed in the shooting at a nightclub in Florida were marked by tense scenes on Saturday, as an impatient driver was accused of injuring two law enforcement officers and one burial took place under the watch of anti-gay protesters. [Reuters]

The “help wanted” sign was posted officially today by the Board of Directors of the Morehead-Rowan County Economic Development Council, Inc., with the publication of a vacancy notice in this issue of The Morehead News. [The Morehead News]

Russian government hackers penetrated the computer network of the Democratic National Committee and gained access to the entire database of opposition research on GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump, according to committee officials and security experts who responded to the breach. The intruders so thoroughly compromised the DNC’s system that they also were able to read all email and chat traffic, said DNC officials and the security experts. [WaPo]

Matt Bevin abolished the Kentucky Retirement Systems Board of Trustees Friday and replaced it with a new board with four additional new members to oversee the state’s retirements systems. [H-L]

The moon was just rising over Half Dome, the setting sun reflected off its sheer granite face, as President Barack Obama and his family landed by helicopter in a meadow, the knee-high grass waving wildly while campers cheered. [HuffPo]

If You Support Homophobia & Advocate For Discrimination, You Have Blood All Over Your Hands

The Kentucky Community and Technical College System Board of Regents approved its budget for next year, which includes a 6.1 percent tuition increase for students and no raises for faculty or staff to help deal with continued budget cuts. [H-L]

Fossil fuel executives say one thing while their lobbyists say another. [HuffPo]

Matt Bevin decided to overhaul the Workers Nominating Commission last month – replacing Democrat Steve Beshear’s seven appointees with seven of his own – as part of what he says is an effort to rid Frankfort of the “pay-to-play” method of governing. A review of political donations by the seven members of the Beshear appointed board showed two members – William Grover Arnett and McKinnley Morgan – have been massive givers to Democratic political causes in recent years. Each, combined with the contributions of his spouse, has given more than $130,000 to Democratic candidates and causes over the past decade. [C-J/AKN]

Mitch McConnell (R-Bitter Grandmother) called out President Obama on Sunday over his foreign policy, saying he’s responsible for a “reduction in American leadership” in the world. [The Hill]

Joe Murley was announced Friday morning as the new finance director for the Barren County School District during a press conference at the district’s central office. [Glasgow Daily Times]

As she waits for the U.S. Supreme Court to rule on a challenge to a restrictive Texas abortion law, Amy Hagstrom-Miller said she hopes she will not have to close up to three of the clinics she operates in the state, but is planning for it just in case. [Reuters]

“The challenge of addiction is one that we confront as both individuals and neighborhoods,” said Joe Pritchard, CEO of Pinnacle Treatment Centers. [Ashland Independent]

Why the Orlando attack will not be an isolated crime. The extraordinarily common violence against LGBT people in America. [The Atlantic]

While a 4-percent cost-of-living pay raise and the lack of funding for new 10-step pay scale for police officers have generated the most attention, Richmond’s proposed 2016-17 budget reflects several significant changes. [Richmond Register]

If you support this monster, you’re enabling, supporting, okaying, begging for more hatred. Donald J. Trump on Sunday sought to capitalize on the mass shooting at a gay club in Orlando, reiterating his controversial call for a temporary ban on Muslim migration to the United States and criticizing Hillary Clinton for what he claimed was her desire to “dramatically increase admissions from the Middle East.” [NY Times]

When volunteers were collecting donations for the Kentucky Regional Animal Shelter (KRAS) near the Sazon Mexican Restaurant in Hazard on Thursday, they didn’t expect for someone to steal the donations and a volunteer’s cell phone. [Hazard Herald]

In the first hours since the mass shooting at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub, Democratic politicians have been far more likely than Republicans to note that the target seemed to be the LGBT community. [WaPo]

I’ve spent years reporting on this and it’s finally happened. A University of Kentucky foundation has violated Kentucky’s Open Records Act by failing to provide documents to Attorney General Andy Beshear’s office for review, that office has ruled. [H-L]

Rabbi Michael Lerner, a political activist and the editor of Tikkun Magazine, didn’t hesitate to get political while speaking at the funeral of sports legend Muhammad Ali, who died at age 74 on June 3. [HuffPo]

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Workers’ Comp: A Hotbed Of Corruption

What Kentucky’s mountains need, even more than that good ol’ federal money, is human capital — smart, passionate young people who have high aspirations for where they live, because if the region has a future, they are it. But don’t worry – youth will never be taken seriously in Eastern Kentucky. No way, no how, not going to happen. Unless you’re neck-deep in the good old boy world, you’re doomed. [H-L]

Contrary to those in the media and elsewhere who claimed he was “far more accepting” on LGBT issues than other GOP candidates, Donald Trump is proving that he very much will be a force against LGBT equality if elected president. And he’s doing it in a more insidious, under-the-radar way than any previous GOP presidential nominee. [HuffPo]

Sooner or later the feds have to start investigating workers’ comp fraud from the Beshear Era, right? Because it’s not like Bevin’s people are competent enough to figure anything out. Franklin Circuit Court on Wednesday put a hold on Gov. Matt Bevin’s order reorganizing the Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Nominating Commission. [C-J/AKN]

When bigotry is more important than one’s faith, apparently. Donald Trump was held up as the only choice for evangelical voters this November at a high-profile conference where faith leaders gave the presumptive Republican nominee their stamp of approval. [The Hill]

It is impossible to realize fully the significance of a time or events as one lives them. It’s only in looking back from a distance of time and perspective that you might be able to understand. [Ronnie Ellis]

Muhammad Ali was extolled on Friday as a boxer of incomparable grace, a magnetic entertainer and a man of conviction who gave a voice to the oppressed, as a two-day celebration of “The Greatest” came to a rousing end in his Kentucky hometown. [Reuters]

Paul C. Goodpaster, chair of the Morehead State University’s Board of Regents, has named a nine-member presidential search and screening advisory committee to help conduct a national search for the next MSU president. [The Morehead News]

Why do many school districts fail to meet the needs of their students? One commonly cited response is our country’s disparate school funding system: because most districts rely heavily on local property tax for funding, schools in poor districts are often left with fewer resources than schools in wealthier areas. [ProPublica]

The southeast Kentucky hospital chain accused in federal court of filing fraudulent prescriptions that were used by staffers and others is asking a judge to throw out the lawsuit. [Ashland Independent]

A gunman wielding an assault-type rifle and a handgun took hostages and opened fire inside a crowded Florida nightclub, killing approximately 20 people and wounding 42 others before dying in a gunfight with SWAT officers, police said Sunday. [Politico]

Logan Calhoun says it was not easy for him to juggle getting a nursing degree from Hazard Community and Technical College while working full time and seeing a new baby join his family, but he was able to handle all those demands. Reflecting on his success, Logan appreciates the effort he undertook to fulfill the dreams for his career. [Hazard Herald]

The Trump Plaza Casino and Hotel is now closed, its windows clouded over by sea salt. Only a faint outline of the gold letters spelling out T-R-U-M-P remains visible on the exterior of what was once this city’s premier casino. Not far away, the long-failing Trump Marina Hotel Casino was sold at a major loss five years ago and is now known as the Golden Nugget. [NY Times]

The scenes blend like images from a kaleidoscope. A woman, blond, jubilant in a white dress, shown magnified on a convention center screen in San Francisco. It is Geraldine A. Ferraro in 1984 accepting the Democratic nomination that made her the first woman in the nation to be tapped by a major party to run for vice president. [H-L]

Donald Trump is starting the general election match-up against Hillary Clinton in a precarious financial position. [HuffPo]

Bevin: KY’s Embarrassing Tea Grifter

We weren’t joking – are you interested in buying The ‘Ville Voice? [The ‘Ville Voice]

Matt Bevin has been in office for six months, and I still don’t know what to make of the selfie governor. Every time he says something that almost makes sense, the next thing out of his mouth is a cuckoo-clock bird. In one breath he will lecture people about the state motto being “United We Stand, Divided We Fall,” and in the next breath take a petty swipe at a political opponent. The irony seems completely lost on him. [Tom Eblen]

Donald Trump would respect limits on his authority if he’s elected president, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Grandmother) said Monday. [HuffPo]

Billionaire coal baron and West Virginia gubernatorial candidate Jim Justice’s required mine reclamation projects in Kentucky are missing deadlines and dragging on, nearly two years after a crackdown by state environmental regulators. [C-J/AKN]

Donald Trump lashed out at the press over scrutiny of the money he raised to donate to veterans groups, in one instance pointing to a reporter and calling him a “sleaze.” [The Hill]

The Madison County Board of Education approved a tentative working budget for 2016-2017 that anticipates a slight dip in revenues. Chief Financial Officer Debbie Frazier presented the spending plan at a Thursday work session. [Richmond Register]

Police do not need a warrant to obtain a person’s cellphone location data held by wireless carriers, a U.S. appeals court ruled on Tuesday, dealing a setback to privacy advocates. [Reuters]

Federal funding will pump oxygen more efficiently into the masks of firefighters when clean air is limited, deputy chief Greg Ray said. Ray told the Ashland Board of City Commissioners on Thursday the Ashland Fire Department received a $221,000 award to replenish its air pack supply. [Ashland Independent]

Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., the ranking member of the congressional committee that oversees the Red Cross, sent a three-page letter to the charity’s CEO on Monday demanding that she explain why the Red Cross struggled to respond to record flooding in Mississippi this spring. [ProPublica]

Lower gas prices yielded additional funding for the Ashland Police Department to add two new vehicles to its aging fleet. [Ashland Independent]

Donald Trump claims a net worth of more than $10 billion and an income of $557 million. But he appears to get there only by overvaluing properties and ignoring his expenses. [Politico]

Community leaders have undertaken an exercise meant to improve traffic flow and safety over the next two decades as part of a Kentucky Transportation Cabinet small urban area study. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Illegal immigrants in the US often get better care than the nation’s military veterans, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has said. [BBC]

Rand Paul’s Political Action Committee paid vendors that were also used by his failed presidential campaign. Which comes as a surprise to absolutely no one. [John Cheves]

Islamic State militants fought back vigorously overnight and parried an onslaught by the Iraqi army on a southern district of the city of Fallujah, the group’s bastion near Baghdad, officers said on Tuesday. [HuffPo]

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