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January 12, 2006

Vol 3 • No 52

License-gate snags an artist

An artist (she asked not to be identified) I know who sells pencils and paintings at shops around town may be one of just a few legal artists in Little Rock. That is, she has paid her business tax to the city for the privilege of doing business here.

Cleaner government

Events prompt me to dredge up a pet topic —stronger ethical rules in state government.

The Bush 'recovery'

The Labor Department reported last week that the U.S. economy created a net of 108,000 jobs in December, and you would have thought that the nation had entered an economic millennium.


Remember a year or two ago when President Bush lectured us all on the importance of being optimists? Well, this year I’m doing it. I’ve resolved to be a cockeyed optimist. I may even join the Optimist Club, unless it’s the one that has the Four-Way

The week that was Jan. 5-11

IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR … REP. BENNY PETRUS. He easily won a race for House speaker in 2007 over Rep. Will Bond. Some legislators who committed to Bond apparently broke their promises. Shocking.

Words Jan. 12

Kristi Alexander asks, “Is it egg on or agg on when you mean to encourage or incite somebody? I say agg on, figuring that agg is short for aggravate. But when I see it written, it’s always egg on.”

Smart Talk Jan. 12

This week: Drinking on campus, the minimum wage and the end of a high school rivalry.

Orval Jan. 12

Editorial cartoon Jan. 12

The Observer Jan. 12

The Observer has just learned of a new art form, thanks to connections with muckety-mucks in the literary world. It is called found poetry.

Bait and switch

Months ago I wrote elsewhere that the city of North Little Rock may very well kill off the Arkansas Travelers with its largesse with last August’s baseball park election: Give the Travs a shiny new ball park that drives the fans away with hidden costs. Th

Downtown mission

Last weekend’s news about Fellowship Bible Church decision to sell most of its Hinson Road campus to Pulaski Academy included a mention that the church’s expansion plans include a new downtown satellite. The megachurch has existing partnerships with schoo

This Modern World Jan. 12

Outlaw in office

We know that Bill Clinton was not the first horny president, despite what his critics said, but George Bush is surely the first torturemonger.

$30,000 millionaires

It is a derisive term frequently tossed around in cities like Dallas, where image is important among a certain set. A “$30,000 millionaire” is someone who tries to achieve a trust-fund lifestyle on a modest budget.

For Alito

I’ve never voted for George W. Bush or been on his side since he was barely elected president in 2001, but I am now.

Book notes, Jan. 12

“The Worst Hard Times” by Timothy Egan “The Silent Majority: Suburban Politics in the Sunbelt South,” by Matthew D. Lassiter. “The Autobiography of Samuel S. Hildebrand, The Renowned Missouri Bushwhacker,” University of Arkansas. “Driving to Timbucktu:

Downtown's fond farewell to Our House

It’s a fairly safe bet to say that no one in the downtown business community was sad to see the Our House homeless shelter finally leave Main Street the weekend before Christmas.

They made 2005 memorable

Each year, we invite readers to contribute nominations to our Arkansan of the Year feature. We list many of those here, along with other people who made a difference in Arkansas in 2005.

It's not security; it's us

Gov. Mike Huckabee last week told a statewide public television audience that his travel on a State Police airplane is for “official business” and authorized by state law.

What's happening in January

Events at bookstores around the state.

What we’re reading, Jan. 12

Here are the top 10 bestsellers from three local bookstores. Data is most recent available.


If you want to know how wife, student and mother of three Terri Hatcher ended up becoming a UALR cheerleader at the ripe old age of 38, ask Arkansas Democrat-Gazette sports editor Wally Hall.

Weighty issue as 2006 begins

I didn’t bother with New Year’s resolutions about returning to the gym or cutting back on the food I like, because March soon rolls around and nothing’s changed. But the time eventually comes in every overweight man’s life that he realizes the pounds aren

The winner

After winning the middleweight championship of the world, then successfully defending his title in a rematch, Jermain Taylor remains, to all appearances, wholesome, good-natured and unboastful. These are not qualities found in all sports heroes. That Tayl

TV highlights Jan. 12-18

NATURE: LIFE IN DEATH VALLEY 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 14 AETN (Comcast Ch. 3, Broadcast Ch. 2) AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: CITIZEN KING 8 p.m. Monday, Jan. 16 AETN (Comcast Ch. 3, Broadcast Ch. 2) A PATCH OF BLUE (1965) 9 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 15 AM

What's cooking Jan. 12

What's cooking: Sesame's and Jasmine's are combined; Beechwood Grill getting revamped; Iriana's new spot: Heritage West.

Celebrating Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart would be 250 years old this year, and the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra will jazz up a two-day celebration of the great composer.

‘Love Letters’ for AIDS

Ashlie Atkinson, who makes her movie debut in Spike Lee’s “The Inside Man” in March and who just wrapped up a Showtime pilot with Isabella Rossellini, decided with friends at Easy Street piano bar one evening last week to put on a play in Little Rock — st


Thanks are in order to Little Rock’s KARK, Channel 4, specifically from the producers and stars of “The Book of Daniel.”

One Stone Reggae regroups for King

Little Rock’s One Stone Reggae Band will welcome back a former member for an upcoming performance honoring Martin Luther King’s life on Friday, Jan. 13.

Calling the Hogs and pizza lovers out west

When we heard that Jim’s Razorback Pizza recently opened a new location on Cantrell Road, we called the other Jim’s locations in the area. They didn’t know about their new sibling, they didn’t have a phone number for it and they couldn’t tell us where it

One for the mules

The Natural Superiority of Mules By John Hauer, Lyons/Globe Pequot Press, hardcover, $29.95 The forensic aspect of this tome is surely a superfluity. That is, those who are already mule enthusiasts need no convincing of the animal’s superiority

No way Will Rogers sang like this

‘The Will Rogers Follies’ Robinson Center Music Hall Jan. 3

Asa makes a living

Asa Hutchinson is as entitled as the next guy to cash in his federal government work, the most marketable of which was as deputy secretary of homeland security for the Bush administration. My problem with Hutchinson is that he cashes in his federal go

All that changes is not gold

FORT SMITH — The friendly woman with the lapel sticker identifying her as representing a local Christian school was, I assumed, a supporter of Asa Hutchinson for governor. She said maybe I assumed too much. “But he is,” she said, pointing to the b

Showcase Semifinalists

The 20 qualifiers to play at Sticky Fingerz

Off this week

Ernest Dumas is taking the week off. He'll return Jan. 26.

Silverman lacks the ‘magic’

If there’s anything l love more than standup, it’s the old-timey idea of a standup comedy movie — a throwback to the glory days when men were men and Woody Allen could tell jokes about falsies. But “Jesus Is Magic” is not funny in the least.