What A Week In Our Lovely, Backward, Corrupt Commonwealth

Let’s all just laugh about this one last time. House Speaker Greg Stumbo announced Wednesday he is appointing a committee to investigate what he says have been threats by Gov. Matt Bevin against state lawmakers. [C-J/AKN]

The United States broke off talks with Russia on Monday on implementing a ceasefire agreement on Syria and accused Moscow of not living up to its commitments under the Sept. 9 deal to [HuffPo]

Saying small cash bonds pose an unfair burden on the poor, a Jefferson County public defender Monday asked a circuit judge to release three defendants from jail on the grounds that district judges had violated their rights by failing to inquire about their financial ability to post bond. [C-J/AKN]

A video of a US student in “blackface” apparently mocking the Black Lives Matter campaign has sparked outrage. [BBC]

Real estate property owners in Glasgow will have the same tax rate as last year. [Glasgow Daily Times]

What does it mean to declare that #blacklivesmatter in education? Last month the Movement for Black Lives, representing elements of the Black Lives Matter movement and related groups, issued a detailed policy platform denouncing what it called “corporate-backed,” “market driven” “privatization” in school reform, and helped set off a furor over this question. [NPR]

“Backing the Lines,” an event showing support for first responders, was held on Friday evening at the Carl Perkins Center. [The Morehead News]

President Barack Obama made his case for a deliberate, measured path toward economic progress in an op-ed published Thursday in The Economist that reads like a plea to disenchanted voters tempted by the economic populism of Republican nominee Donald Trump. [Politico]

On Nov. 8, Kentuckians will decide who represents the Commonwealth as United States Senator. One of Kentucky’s two senate seats is occupied by Mitch McConnell. The other seat belongs to Rand Paul. However, Rand Paul, a republican, has a democratic challenger in the November election, and that challenger is Lexington Mayor Jim Gray. [Hazard Herald]

Voters in four states appear likely to approve ballot measures that would legalize marijuana for recreational purposes, according to recent surveys, while voters are split on the question in a fifth state. [The Hill]

The Republican Party of Kentucky has tons of other racists in their midst. Tons of them appointed by Matt Bevin to various and sundry positions. You’ve read all about them on Page One. This is their attempt to appear non-racist by throwing some nobody with no shot of winning to the wolves as a sacrifice. [WDRB]

Forty-four Afghan troops visiting the United States for military training have gone missing in less than two years, presumably in an effort to live and work illegally in America, Pentagon officials said. [Reuters]

Horse Country hopes to boost Thoroughbred racing, Central Kentucky tourism by offering behind-the-scenes tours of farms, equine clinics and feed mills. The goal is to do for horse breeding what the Kentucky Bourbon Trail is doing for whiskey-making. [H-L]

Civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) on Monday implored young leaders invited to the White House to continue his generation’s legacy of civil rights activism by reminding them of sacrifices that won the right to vote. [HuffPo]

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UK Is Run By A Bunch Of Assholes

Eastern Kentucky needs your love. She died alone in the middle of the night, and her body was swiftly autopsied, embalmed and carted 135 miles to a remote Kentucky county where she had been raised. [H-L]

The Department of Justice made a landmark decision last week when it announced it would direct the Bureau of Prisons to let its contracts with private prison companies lapse. But last week’s change in policy left the U.S. Marshals Service untouched, even though that agency is also under DOJ control and keeps nearly as many people locked in privatized jails as the Bureau of Prisons. [HuffPo]

You know, like Jim Ramsey took the high road when attacking ON TELEVISION anyone questioning Robert Flener, who went to prison. “Chairman Benz needs to keep his comments on the high road and work with all of the UL staff, its affiliated boards and their leadership, and the media to promote harmony,” said Hughes, who also serves on the Board of Trustees. [C-J/AKN]

A bipartisan quartet of lawmakers is circulating a letter that seeks to delay a pending arms sale to Saudi Arabia. [The Hill]

With just less than six weeks before a countywide election to determine whether legal alcohol sales will be allowed in Barren County, election officers are seeking some temporary polling places. [Glasgow Daily Times]

North Carolina’s university system must allow two transgender students and a transgender employee to use bathrooms matching their gender identity, a U.S. judge ruled on Friday, in a partial victory for those fighting the state’s restrictive restroom law. [Reuters]

The first guy was believable but Russ Meyer doesn’t carry the same credibility. That’s problematic, sure. His ties to Adam Edelen and the the Cormans also do not help him. But that doesn’t mean what he’s saying is in any way untrue. Thankfully for him, Sinnette’s story went public first, establishing a pattern. It’s clear that the Bevin team is attempting to retaliate against ANYONE holding them accountable. A second Democratic state lawmaker now claims Republican Gov. Matt Bevin tried to persuade him to switch parties and that the governor’s chief of staff threatened to punish him politically when he refused. [Ronnie Ellis]

Physicians whose state boards have sanctioned them for harming patients, unnecessarily prescribing addictive drugs, bilking federal insurance programs and even sexual misconduct nonetheless continue to receive payments for consulting, giving talks about products, and more. [ProPublica]

Louisville can’t stop killing everybody. Two vigils were held for three different victims of homicides near Shelby Park this week. [WDRB]

Hillary Clinton and Paul Ryan don’t agree on much — but both are lending their support to an anti-poverty proposal that cuts across racial and party lines. [Politico]

The University of Kentucky could soon be taking legal action against its own school newspaper. [WHAS11]

Hillary Clinton has launched a full broadside against Donald Trump, accusing her Republican opponent of issuing a “steady stream of bigotry” and espousing policies that would “put prejudice into practice”. [BBC]

State Rep. John Short, whose name surfaced this year in a federal vote-buying investigation in Magoffin County that led to several convictions, said Tuesday that he doesn’t want to discuss the case. [John Cheves]

A massive crack in one of Antarctica’s largest ice shelves has grown exponentially in recent months, and scientists worry a break-off could destabilize the entire structure. [HuffPo]

Louisville Has A Big Pollution Problem

Fayette County Public Schools would start the school year almost a week later in 2017-18 under a proposal presented to the school board Monday night. [H-L]

Without significant policy reform in America, it would take 228 years for black families to amass the wealth that white families have today, according to a new study. [HuffPo]

Tighter federal clean-air rules could save the lives of at least 48 people a year in the Louisville metro area over a year, according to a new study released Wednesday morning by a medical association. [C-J/AKN]

Waste people. Rubbish. Clay-eaters. Hillbillies. Two new books that reckon with the long, bleak history of the country’s white poor suggest their plight shouldn’t have caught the rest of the country off guard. [ProPublica]

A western Kentucky man who spent several days in jail for posting violent song lyrics to Facebook has settled a lawsuit against the county where he was jailed. [WLKY]

One of Obamacare’s major provisions — which is bitterly opposed by most Republicans — has helped improve patients’ insurance coverage, financial situation, and overall quality of life, according to a new study. [ThinkProgress]

A study of drinking water systems found 6 million Americans, including people in West Virginia, Kentucky, and Ohio, are living with drinking water containing chemicals linked to a host of health problems. [WFPL]

Remember this guy? A U.S. federal judge on Tuesday upheld the 14-year prison sentence for ex-Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich despite his emotional plea for leniency after an appeals court set aside part of his public corruption conviction. [Reuters]

Surprise! The thing we’ve been writing about for a decade is still happening! The $14.9 billion Kentucky Retirement Systems lost money on its pension investments during the fiscal year that ended June 30. [John Cheves]

CNN media reporter Brian Stelter said that Fox News arranged for a young staffer to date him in order to collect information while he was in college. [The Hill]

LG&E is closing its coal ash ponds at its power plants in Louisville and Trimble County. [WDRB]

You can’t fix this kind of awful. Donald Trump has hinted at the assassination of Hillary Clinton by supporters of gun rights. [The Guardian]

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin is giving people more time to comment on his proposal to overhaul the state’s Medicaid program that insures more than 25 percent of the state’s population. [H-L]

Sinking precipitously in national polls, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump on Monday promoted a conspiracy tying Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton to the state execution of an Iranian nuclear scientist. [HuffPo]

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Hold On Tight! Bevin Roller Coaster Fun

Franklin Circuit Court Judge Phillip Shepherd has granted Attorney General Andy Beshear’s request to temporarily block Gov. Matt Bevin’s overhaul of the University of Louisville Board of Trustees. [H-L]

In 1968, Hillary Clinton, known at the time as Hillary Rodham, was taking in the excitement of the Republican National Convention in Miami. The young Republican had jumped at the chance to volunteer for Nelson Rockefeller’s last-minute effort to take the nomination from Richard Nixon and attend her first political convention. [HuffPo]

During a briefing about the Health Science Center at Thursday’s University of Louisville Board of Trustees meeting, J. David Grissom, a trustee and former banker who is chairman of an investment firm, asked what the university is doing in response to reports that KentuckyOne Health, which manages U of L Hospital, has been cited for a nursing shortage there and received “D” mark on cleanliness and other issues. [C-J/AKN]

As he crisscrossed Philadelphia this week for the Democratic National Convention, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) couldn’t walk far without being recognized. [The Hill]

The University of Louisville’s next president will be saddled with more than just baggage from James Ramsey’s tenure. The new president will inherit Ramsey’s top deputies, many of whom were given lucrative compensation packages and perks that experts say go far beyond the norm. Ramsey’s own buyout is $690,000, but the cost of his pledges to top executives could be millions more from school coffers. [WFPL]

The state of Florida, the first to report the arrival of Zika in the continental United States, has yet to invite a dedicated team of the federal government’s disease hunters to assist with the investigation on the ground, health officials told Reuters. [Reuters]

A Franklin Circuit Judge on Friday granted Attorney General Andy Beshear’s request for a injunction temporary halting Gov. Matt Bevin’s attempt to reorganize the University of Louisville Board of Trustees. [Ronnie Ellis]

The furor over the cyberattacks injecting turmoil into Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign obscures a more pervasive danger to the U.S. political process: Much of it has only lax security against hackers, with few if any federal cops on the beat. [Politico]

After a month of initially opening the needle exchange to the public, Kristy Bolen, Senior Regional Epidemiologist of the Ashland-Boyd County Health Department, is pleased with the outcome. [Ashland Independent]

Is Donald Trump a racist? You already know the answer to that but here’s a solid history from a conservative. [NY Times]

When some Barren County students return to classes on Aug. 11, they will see new features at their school buildings. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Six Michigan state workers have been charged with hiding data that showed that drinking water was unsafe in the city of Flint. [BBC]

Franklin Circuit Court Judge Thomas D. Wingate on Friday denied the Family Foundation’s motion for summary judgment against one type of historical racing game, Encore, in use at Kentucky Downs in Franklin. [H-L]

The father of a Muslim American war hero addressed the Democratic National Convention on Thursday, delivering a brutal takedown of Donald Trump and his inflammatory anti-Muslim rhetoric. [HuffPo]

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Where’s The Statue Of Tina Conner?

Former Gov. Paul Patton joked Tuesday that while supporters don’t usually put up statues of people before they die, he might not have been able to make sure a likeness of him was done correctly if they had waited. [H-L]

Donald Trump on Wednesday said he hopes Hillary Clinton’s deleted emails have fallen into the hands of Russian hackers. [HuffPo]

This little birdy is singing a really long song. The sentencing date for former Kentucky Personnel Cabinet Secretary Tim Longmeyer has been rescheduled for 2 p.m. Sept. 22 in federal court in Lexington. [C-J/AKN]

President Obama said in an interview broadcast Sunday he’s “hopeful” about race relations improving in the country. [The Hill]

A new board to develop strategies for agricultural water use in Kentucky is closer to its first meeting. [WFPL]

California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law on Friday a bill to require anyone planning to build a homemade firearm to first obtain a serial number for the weapon and submit to a background check, his office said in a statement. [Reuters]

Messy hands happily smeared strips of paper across large sized figures as creatures began to take form Wednesday morning at a camp hosted by Berea Art House. [Richmond Register]

President Barack Obama charged Sunday that divisive rhetoric from Donald Trump on Muslims and terrorism is “ultimately helping do ISIL’s work.” [Politico]

Boyd County will spend $80,000 for a one-question “wet” election on packaged alcohol sales — three months before it spends another $90,000 on the presidential election. [Ashland Independent]

Virginia Senator Tim Kaine has attended his first rally as Hillary Clinton’s vice presidential running mate, saying: “America was not built on fear”. [BBC]

Rowan Fiscal Court has agreed that the Tri-County Animal Shelter is for dogs and cats only and the feline capacity is limited to 30. [The Morehead News]

Donald Trump made clear this weekend that he has not rolled back his proposal to ban Muslims from entering the United States, despite top allies insisting that he had. [WaPo]

Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes used her speech Tuesday at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia to paint Hillary Clinton as caring and inquisitive and “a fighter for every single thing Donald Trump is against.” [H-L]

A quarter-century after winning his party’s nomination for the presidency, Bill Clinton took the Democratic National Convention stage to tell a story on the night his wife officially won it herself… [HuffPo]

Everybody Has Donald Trump Regret

Students’ posting of a Black Lives Matter sign in Bryan Station High School fits with the Fayette County Public Schools’ values, officials said on Wednesday. [H-L]

As the saying goes, birds of a feather flock together. So it’s only fitting that within hours of being named Donald Trump’s vice presidential pick, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) pulled one of his running mate’s favorite moves. [HuffPo]

What’s your risk of avoidable hospital death? Thousands of lives could be saved if more hospitals were as safe as those that received an A grade in a recent round of grading by a watchdog group that found no top scorers in Louisville. [C-J/AKN]

Centrist Democrats appear reluctant to join their party’s embrace of a public option for ObamaCare. [The Hill]

Kentucky Power Co. is moving its corporate headquarters back to Ashland after more than a decade in the capital city. [Ashland Independent]

Last week, two lawmakers introduced a bill to put new limits on what debt collectors can take from debtors’ paychecks and bank accounts. It is the first legislation to address the issue in decades and follows a series of ProPublica stories about the widespread practice of garnishment. [ProPublica]

A year later, Smith and his wife Serena, who was also deeply involved in Davis-support rallies, are working the “third shift” at Walmart. Smith said he quit his job last year in order to more fully devote himself to the cause of supporting Davis. [Richmond Register]

Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy (D) and Ohio Congresswoman Marcia Fudge (D) introduced a bill this week that aims to help public schools become more racially diverse by providing grants for school districts to create voluntary school desegregation plans. [ThinkProgress]

A brief hearing in Barren Circuit Court on Tuesday settled a scheduling conflict in the lawsuit Glasgow police Lt. Col. Guy Turcotte has against the city and James Duff, former interim chief. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The last year has shined a harsh light on two distressing realities of American life. Mass shootings are becoming more common. And more Americans are killing themselves. These disturbing trends share something in common, obvious in the first case and less so in the second: guns. [WaPo]

Officials in Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration did not directly answer whether they plan to notify users of a problem-plagued state benefits system that they should reapply for services such as Medicaid and food assistance. [WFPL]

“The Art of the Deal” made America see Trump as a charmer with an unfailing knack for business. Tony Schwartz helped create that myth – and regrets it. [The New Yorker]

Curiosity finally got the best of me. I had to drive up I-75 and see Noah’s Ark. I found the ark to be an impressive piece of woodcraft, which made me feel better about paying $40 to see it. (It cost an additional $10 to park in the 4,000-space parking lot, which was only a fraction full.) [H-L]

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R-Gay Panicked), Donald Trump’s vice presidential pick, opposed a successful effort in 2007 to raise the federal minimum wage to $7.25 an hour over two years. [HuffPo]