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March 18, 2010

Vol 8 • No 10

Dirty Charlie and the union

"We need the attitude of Dirty Harry, almost hoping for direct insubordination. That is, ‘Go ahead, make my day.’” Charlie Wood, vice president of the Pulaski County School Board, wrote that in a memo to Robert McGill, who was then the interim superintendent of the Pulaski County School District, and sent copies to fellow board members.

Dirty Charlie and the union

"We need the attitude of Dirty Harry, almost hoping for direct insubordination. That is, ‘Go ahead, make my day.’” Charlie Wood, vice president of the Pulaski County School Board, wrote that in a memo to Robert McGill, who was then the interim superintendent of the Pulaski County School District, and sent copies to fellow board members.

Answer: there is no shame

Republicans are again ruling the day by branding a proposed method for House passage of health legislation as unparalleled, undemocratic trickery.

Cable Nut Network

I don't watch CNN much anyway. It'll be less now.

Lincoln's latest

Blanche Lincoln's latest plugs her agri expertise through Lonoke County farmer L.D. Brantley (he'd be the first to want you to know we're no relation.)

Understanding media

A regular Blog reader can't wait for tonight's open line. He asks that I post the following thought.

Groping for the exit

Take over. I think I'm done.

What's wrong with Marion Berry?

I know. The list is long.

Smart Talk, March 18

Readers have asked what’s up with the house that remained standing at the corner of South Cedar and Plateau after the whole block — including a rundown motel — was razed for the new Walgreens between Cedar and Pine on Markham.

Mad Hatter

I wrote a few weeks ago that people in the Tea Party movement are irrational extremists. So the Lowell and Marshall McClanahan of Conway invited me to the next meeting of the Faulkner County Tea Party.

The To-Do List, March 19-23

Smoke on the Water BBQ Festival; 'The Little Dog Laughed;' John Lee Hooker, Jr.; J. Roddy Walston and the Business; Sweet Eagle, Green Jelly; Awesome Color; Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson; Paleface; The Moaners

Twin Rivers Indians rise

Parents desperate to reverse the dissolution of their Northeast Arkansas school district by the state are declaring that their children are part of a minority group — Native American — and that the closure was discriminatory.

UALR looks at race

UALR Chancellor Joel Anderson’s soft-spoken evenness and lack of drama should not be taken as a lack of grit. He’s been a believer in the advancement of human rights at least since his college days at Harding, when he stood witness to the historic (and violent) desegregation of Ole Miss.

The Week That Was, March 10-16

IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR...UAPB. A conference title gave the men’s basketball team a trip to the NCAA tournament, quite a finish for a year that began with a 0-11 road trip.

Lotto machines

Shortly after the lottery launched in September 2009, the Times reported that the lottery commission would roll out ticket vending machines in the spring. There’s no sign of them yet, but some legislators hope to ban the machines, saying they make it too easy for children to buy tickets.

Open season

With a national eye turned to just about every race in Arkansas, the campaigns and the rhetoric are starting to heat up. Here, some examples of the best and worst political maneuvering from the GOP side so far, from the Arkansas Blog.

Words, March 18

“Most customers are not aware that the City of Benton does have torte immunity for this type of damage.” An anonymous correspondent writes, “If I had torte immunity, maybe I could lose a few pounds.”

Fed up

I’m sick of rogue crazies lumping me into some hallucinatory “elite” presumably as the preliminary to a big roundup. I’m sick of being hissed at by possums that look like (and hiss like) Dick Cheney.

Stallings at ArtWalk

This weeks’ Third Friday Argenta ArtWalk on Main Street in North Little Rock features new exhibits, including one by previous Delta Exhibition winner Kendall Stallings; artist demonstrations at three venues, and concerts at the Thea Foundation.



Comedy, even unsophisticated comedy, has its place in the theater and can offer mindless escape. But this is not what “Glorious!” offers. The play brings the ethos of reality television — unearned stardom, purchased celebrity, pedantic moralizing — to the stage.

B-Side to the rescue

Central Arkansas isn’t blessed with too many options on the breakfast front. So we’re thrilled that Lilly’s co-owner Nancy Tesmer and chef Jeffrey Moore have stepped in to fill the void with B-Side, newly open as a stand-alone restaurant in the former party room of Lilly’s.

The Observer, March 18

The Observer, like everyone else, hates it when we have car trouble, but we’re beginning to look forward to the aftermath a bit. When the Mobile Observatory conks, we take it to Foster’s Garage on Ninth Street, the venerable old joint that’s been in Little Rock since the days of steam.

In Brief, March 18-20

Downtown Music hosts local doom metal band Pallbearer, Batesville’s Lost Machina, and Columbus, Ohio’s Struck By Lightning, 8 p.m., $6. The UALR Percussion Ensemble tackles Pink Floyd’s “Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Parts I-V)” and Radiohead’s “Weird Fishes” at Stella Boyle Hall on UALR campus, 7 p.m., $10.

The Televisionist, March 18

There’s something lovely about the human urge to create and understand, and when you get right down to where the shoe leather meets the sidewalk, it is what makes us human to begin with.

States rights - again

The debate over universal health insurance has soared to loftier and loftier planes so that it is now being argued in contexts of the great movements of the American experiment.

Spa City shakedown

When Bill Solledor and Shea Childs found themselves bored with their Hot Springs’ hackneyed musical offerings of cover bands and worn out country singers, a glint of inspiration turned into an impromptu burst of phone calls and e-mails and, like that, the Valley of the Vapors Festival was born.

A&E News, March 18

The Oxford American is giving Charles Portis its Lifetime Achievement in Southern Literature award, a prize the Conway-based magazine previously bestowed on Donald Harington.

What's Cookin', March 18

We’ve borrowed survey questions the Oxford American’s website asked chefs and food writers across the South in conjunction with its new Southern Food issue.

Congo John

Rep. John Boozman visited 14 countries, including such places as Djibouti and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Yet the peripatetic Boozman is not considered expert in foreign affairs. Far from it. “He’s a little behind,” Republican leaders say privately.

The state and HannahGrace

My experience of the past year with DCFS has been nothing but negative. People who were hired to fix problems are forced out because they want change. The public has been lulled into a false sense of well-being.

Camp jejune

Maybe now that Hollywood has decided that the Iraq War is worth at least one Oscar it'll quit shoving overcooked realism and hindsight assessments down our throats. Until then, there's at least one more unappetizing serving left on our plates: “Green Zone.”

Mightier than Walmart

Interesting story from Alcoholic Beverage Control Board yesterday. Walmart couldn't get a beer and wine permit for a store in Morrilton Ignore all the talk about public safety, convenience and necessity.

Enough with the surrogates

John Brummett is tired of paid campaign hands doing the jousting for Lt. Gov. Bill Halter and Sen. Blanche Lincoln in their primary battle for U.S. Senate.

Easy come, easy go

The lottery money is rolling in far beyond expectations and Arkansas families with qualifying college students will happily accept $5,000 scholarships to attend four-year colleges in 2010-11.

Argenta Motion

Ah, spring is here, and Argenta is in full bloom... with business.  Dropped by to check out the action along Main Street, and found definite progress at the Argenta Market.    Down the street at number 318, Crush Wine Bar is ready to go.  I hear Tuesday night's opening was a humdinger.

Pie Eyed

Been working on a project these past few days, and in the course of said project I realized I'd been derelect in my duties.  Because of all the things I found, I discovered I'd forgotten to talk about Old Chicago Pizza.

Marion Berry on health

I chatted with U.S. Rep. Marion Berry this morning. The tide of opinion (Catholic nuns and hospitals, etc.) that Senate health bill language on abortion doesn’t liberalize government policy hasn’t swayed Berry.

Health bill a deficit cutter

Big news. The independent Congressional Budget Office says the proposed health bill will be a deficit cutter -- more than $100 billion the first 10 years, another trillion over the next 10 years.

How low will Booz go?

Rep. John Boozman is in the field polling, apparently, and if it's not a "push poll" -- aimed at influencing voters more than sampling public opinion -- it bears a resemblance.

Televisionist: Ted Talks

TED TALKSwww.ted.comI like people who do stuff. While that might seem like a helluva broad statement, what I'm talking about are the folks who do one thing and do it amazingly well — from writers to astronomers to guys who make handmade knives.

Fighting Irish

Another blog reader takes up the role of media critic today, in the manner of a reader yesterday who was unhappy that the Democrat-Gazette hadn't sent a staff member to cover UAPB's win in the first game of the NCAA men's basketball tournament.

Lincoln ripped on student loans rips Sen. Blanche Lincoln for opposing changes to the student loan program that would save money, help students but, not incidentally, make it harder for bankers to profiteer at government expense.

McDaniel joins FedEx probe

Attorney General Dustin McDaniel is joining a multistate probe of whether Federal Express incorrectly classifies its drivers as independent contractors rather than employees.

Here come the food police

More details will be coming shortly, but details are to be unveiled today about an agreement between the food processing and beverage industries on new standards for nutritional value of foods sold in schools.

Arkansas Baptist College: Stimulated

NEW UNION: Coming soon to Ark. Baptist. This will put some people to work, revitalize a neighborhood and provide a shinier lure to college students.

Thursday: Struck by Lightning, Carridale, the UALR Percussion Ensemble.

Unabashed pop punkers Carridale and locals with an instigating last name, Thrill of a Dogfight, take their heavy-emo riffs and yelping harmonies to Vinos, 8 p.m., $7.

Not rooting for home team

The item here yesterday about Supreme Court candidate Courtney Henry's bundle of nursing home/insurance lobby/medical contributions spurred quite a bit of feedback, so let's throw this in the hopper, too.

6th Annual Valley of the Vapors: Night Two

This is your band on cocaine: The Chinese Stars Of all the five nights of VOV shows, this very one sports the line up that should send you to your car and straight to Hot Springs.The night starts up at 6 p.m. with three native Arkansan bands: Our Friends Fall Silent, an auto-tune rigged hardcore act that sports a rager of a track in “I Party With Thug Nasty”; Mother Hug, an offshoot of Hot Springs' scene deities Attractive and Popular; and one of—if not the­—best (yeah, best) band from Fayetteville, Perpetual Werewolf.Okay, guys.

Obama v. Huckabee

Poll shows Obama by a whisker against our former governor for president and in a dead heat with Romney.

R.I.P. Alex Chilton

More to come.

John Prine coming to Robinson

On Friday, June 4 at Robinson. Tickets, which range from $48.45 to $59.25, go on-sale on Friday at 10 a.m.Wonder if the whistler will return?

Clock starts on health bill

You can go here for the text of health legislation that will come to a vote Sunday.

Cashing in on the lottery

The Times reported some months ago about Ed Dozier, a local ad man, who obtained a trademark on "Arkansas Lottery" and similar phrases many years ago, most likely to be in a position to profit had voters approved a state lottery along with a 1994 casino gambling amendment.

Death of Barbara Ashmore

Roy Reed sends news from our Hogeye, Ark., bureau: Word comes from Sander Vanocur, the semi-retired television correspondent, that his neighbor Barbara Ashmore died about three weeks ago in Santa Barbara.

Watch never-before-seen footage of Alex Chilton

It's of Chilton, Jim Dickinson, Sid Selvidge and Marcia Hare recording "Like Flies on Sherbert."

Little Rock (and beyond) remembers Alex Chilton

One could make a strong argument that if you were to distill the "Little Rock sound" down to the basest stock, removing the various influences heard here and there until one single, shared sound remained, it would be the that of Big Star and Alex Chilton.Needless to say, last night's bad news traveled fast through town, instantly marring a lot of Irish levity and setting off a chain of spur of the moment listening parties.

Both sides now for Mike Ross

U.S. Rep. Mike Ross is reiterating and reiterating his opposition to health care reform -- House bill or Senate bill.

Speak now

New thread here.

March madness -- Ventura

A report from Jaman Matthews, who was at the Clinton Library tonight: Former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura spoke tonight at the Clinton School.

Smoke on the Water

Very few things have the power to both unite and divide people as instantly and astringently as barbecue. Wet v. dry, mustard v. vinegar v. tomato: for meat jockeys and foodies alike, these are opinions as intensely held as those regarding Roe v. Wade.

Proctor footnote

The Democrat-Gazette and others followed up at some length today on the news we first reported Wednesday afternoon that ousted Judge Willard Proctor hadn't given up on trying to get back on the bench.

Halter declares today UPDATE

Bill Halter has scheduled a news conference this morning to talk about the coming votes on health legislation.

A morning cry

Prepare to choke up if you check this New York Times photo essay of the bedrooms left behind by some of the 5,000 U.S. military who've died in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Big Time Barbecue

If you haven't started to smell the piquant scent of smoke and rub on the air in downtown Little Rock, you will soon.  John Tarpley has details you need about the Smoke on the Water BBQ Festival.

Weekend To-Do: Smoke on the Water

SMOKE ON THE WATER 5 p.m., NLR Riverside Park, $5. Very few things have the power to both unite and divide people as instantly and astringently as barbecue.

Weekend To-Do: 'The Little Dog Laughed'

'THE LITTLE DOG LAUGHED' 7:30 p.m., The Weekend Theater, $10-$14. Diana, a successful, ball-breaking Hollywood agent, has found a cash cow in her client Mitchell, whose talent and matinee idol looks are soon to carry him to mega-fame.

6th Annual Valley of the Vapors: Night Three

Anime-zing. Tonight marks the halfway point of Hot Springs' VOV festival with night three's lineup of, on one hand, pop-punk and ska at Low Key and rockabilly burlesque at Maxine's.

This Weekend: Flight, Harley Poe, Gringo Star, Boombox

Harley Poe. FRIDAY 3/19 ACAC has four-piece Harley Poe play horror-inspired acoustic punk with a large dose of wit straight from Gordon Gano's songbook, 7 p.m. “Iron Man” Michael Burks of Camden shreds on the blues with the help of his ever-present Flying V at Benton's newest venue, Denton's Trotline, 8 p.m., $10.

When will they ever learn?

Term-limited state Rep. Otis Davis of Earle is doing all he can to help elect Fred Smith to succeed him in District 54.

More Than Mexican

Have I kept any good-eating secrets around Arkansas to myself? Well, yes, I guess I’m guilty of that.

Big coke bust near Alma

Arkansas highway police seized an estimated $4.5 million in cocaine (shown) found in a hidden compartment during an Alma inspection of a tractor-trailer that was en route from California to Canada.

Judge Sims admonished

The state Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission announced today that it had admonished two judges, including Pulaski Circuit Judge Barry Sims in a case referred by the state Supreme Court.

Download-Stream: Arkansas Bo's 'The Notebook'

Nice collection from Stuttgart's finest. It's a mix of brand new tracks, relatively new songs released on recent Suga City mixtapes and old standbys ("Arkansas Sound" is way old, but still way awesome).

Ride the drunk bus

Everybody knows Central Arkansas is bad for drinking and getting home safely. Public transpo doesn't go late.

Saturday To-Do: John Lee Hooker Jr.

JOHN LEE HOOKER JR.9 p.m., Sticky Fingerz, $8 adv., $10 d.o.s.There's little doubt that if John Lee Hooker Jr. had focused his efforts on carrying on the stripped-down, Clarksdale talking blues that established his father as an icon, he'd find himself with a built-in fan base from first strum.

Legislator raps ASU fee increases

State Sen. Jimmy Jeffress, who also happens to be father of an Arkansas State University graduate student, has written an indignant letter to ASU President Les Wyatt about fee increases proposed for next school year.

Sunday To-Do: J. Roddy Walston and the Business - Sweet Eagle

J. RODDY WALSTON AND THE BUSINESS/SWEET EAGLE9 p.m., White Water Tavern. $7.J. Roddy Walston and the Business might not yet have name recognition nationally, but in the Little Rock club world, the Baltimore four-piece is a big deal.

Oh, go ahead

Answer Mike Ross' survey and vote for the health bill. He'll ignore you no matter how the vote turns out, but be heard.

Pulaski school rumor control

Interesting school gossip floated over the transom today. It was that some members of the Pulaski County School Board wanted to hire Roy Brooks, fired as Little Rock school superintendent and later pushed out from his job as leader of the e-Stem charter school, as the Pulaski County School District superintendent.

Pulaski school rumor control

Interesting school gossip floated over the transom today. It was that some members of the Pulaski County School Board wanted to hire Roy Brooks, fired as Little Rock school superintendent and later pushed out from his job as leader of the e-Stem charter school, as the Pulaski County School District superintendent.

Turn out the lights

My party's over.

School hearing ends

Chris Heller, the Little Rock School District's attorney, should have been a wire service reporter.

B-Side to the rescue

Breakfast done right by the Lilly's spin-off.

Planting little Acorns

ACORN, the grassroots community action group founded in Little Rock, is on the verge of bankruptcy thanks to its own internal problems and the recent hit by right-wing political activists, grotesquely misrepresented in media accounts.

Money in judicial races

We've had a couple of lively discussions so far (here and also here) on campaign financing in the race for state Supreme Court between Courtney Henry and Judge John Fogleman.

Oh, no -- Doe's

The early morning mail included an e-mail from Brooke Malloy with a photograph of fire blazing from the kitchen at Doe's Eat Place on Markham Street late last night.

Get your scorecard here

NY Times begins the countdown to the health vote with a chart on House members still in play on the health vote.

6th Annual Valley of the Vapors: Night Four (Saturday)

Theodore - Evergreen The twang of VOV’s opening night with Lucero and Tumbledown is returning Saturday night, this time with a bit more of the experimental edge that defines the Hot Springs festival.

Sob story

Here's the health debate in a nutshell: To the Becks, Limbaughs and Republicans in Congress, the death of an uninsured working mother who left an 11-year-old behind is a mere "sob story" suitable for ridicule.

Lincoln's running, but is she hiding?

Will U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln debate opponent Bill Halter? Call me cynical, but the campaign palaver here sounds like somebody whose dance card is going to be -- darn it!


  I heads-upped you in my previous post (below) but the day arrived TODAY! In the form of my contracts from WM / E in Beverly Hills!

The death rattle

As the House moves toward passage of health reform -- without the Slaughter rule but on an up-or-down vote -- the other side is going nuts and showing its true colors.

Saturday threads

Surely the talk tonight will be mostly health care. Have at it.


J. Roddy Walston and the Business might not yet have name recognition nationally, but in the Little Rock club world, the Baltimore four-piece is a big deal. Justifiably. Think Thin Lizzy channeling Jerry Lee Lewis, with big riffs, big beats and a front man — J. Roddy — who plays rock 'n' roll keyboard like he's trying to break the keys.

Teabaggery exposed

When it comes to taxes, their core issue, the noisy, epithet-yelling mobsters of the tea parties don't know what they're talking about.

Counting heads on health UPDATE

No solid updates yet this morning on where the House vote stands. On the one hand, it sounds like everyone went home, suggesting the 216 cows are in the barn.

Clinton does a little standup

Bill Clinton subbed for President Obama at the Gridiron dinner. Clinton said he regretted having come to dinner without “either of the Bushes,” referring to his disaster-relief partners: George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush.

Sex charge at church school

Channel 11 has more on the charge that the principal of the church-sponsored Abundant Life high school sexually assaulted a student.

Science Sunday

Question: Why is my street covered with earthworms this morning?

It's done?

NBC says Stupak will vote yes. Does this mean Marion Berry might do right?

Ross-Berry battle the tide

The wimp U.S. Rep. Mike Ross explains why he'll go in the tank on history.  Lameduck U.S. Rep. Marion "Good Riddance" Berry joins him.

If you need it ...

... an open line.


Acclaimed, up-and-coming singer/songwriter Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson shares a packed bill at Sticky Fingerz with Suckers and Shilpa Ray and Her Happy Hookers.

Now Lincoln's the target UPDATE

Approval of health legislation brought an in-box full of news releases this morning, mostly Republican noise about repealing the historic advance in coverage of Americans.

Housing the disabled

John Lyon of Stephens Media rounds up the stats that show how far out of step Arkansas is in housing the developmentally disabled in large institutions.

Son of Joe

Somebody in the House shouted "baby killer" at pro-life Rep. Brad Bart Stupak during debate yesterday.

It's official: Gunner is nuts

I agree with Tolbert. Gunner DeLay has one-upped everyone in the morning-after mail maelstrom with a call for civil disobedience in refusing to pay the required future tax levies if you don't have health insurance.

The Weekend: The Original Toughman Contest

Photo by Jaman Matthews. Contributor Jaman Matthews files this dispatch from this weekend's Toughman Contest:I just watched a man in a plaid kilt beat another man until the losing fighter waved his hands in front of his face and mouthed, “I’m done.”That’s right.

The Weekend: John Lee Hooker Jr.

Brian Chilson snapped this great set from John Lee Hooker Jr.'s performance at Sticky Fingerz on Saturday.

Monday To-Do: Green Jelly

GREEN JELLY9 p.m., Juanita's, $5 adv., $8 d.o.s.When Green Jelly formed in 1981, their intent was to form “the world's worst band.” In that regard, they've come just short of the mark thanks to a certain Canadian outfit whose ineptitude is so renowned that you know exactly who I'm talking about.

Maddow in town

MSNBC anchor and former Air-America radio host Rachel Maddow made an appearance at the Little Rock convention center this morning as part of the Clinton School's speaker series.

Monday To-Do: Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson

MILES BENJAMIN ANTHONY ROBINSON8:30 p.m., Sticky Fingerz, $8 adv., $10 d.o.s.Earning comparisons to modern-day angst peddler Conor Oberst can be both blessing and curse.

Report on Sherwood sex assault

Here's the incident report from the Sherwood Police Department about the complaint that led to a sexual assault charge against Abundant Life High School Principal Timothy Ballard, now on paid leave from the school.

Update: Beard Foundation awards

The James Beard Foundation today announced finalists in its competition for the country's best chefs and restaurants.

Monday To-Do: Awesome Color

AWESOME COLOR10 p.m., Vino's, $8.Maybe Awesome Color — while a great name — is a touch misleading.

Halter: Six debates UPDATE

Now Bill Halter has proposed a series of six "town hall" debates with U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln.

Brownie Ledbetter dead at 77

Brownie Ledbetter, 77, a liberal activist of decades standing in Little Rock, died at her home Sunday night.

Viva health care

Secure Arkansas, the hysterical anti-immigrant group, has found a threat even scarier -- health coverage for all Americans.

Doe's: Down, but not out

As Max reported Saturday morning, Doe's Eat Place caught fire Friday night. Today, owner George Eldridge estimates the damage, which he says will likely end up costing somewhere in the neighborhood of $25,000 to $50,000, will keep the downtown landmark closed for a week, two at the latest.All the repairs will be covered by insurance.We'll keep you posted.

ACORN folds

ACORN, the community organization that Wade Rathke started in Little Rock, is folding. But individual former affiliates, including one in Arkansas, are expected to continue the group's good work at afflicting the comfortable.

Free Candy: Little Rockers covering Big Star

Big Star. That's Chilton in the sweater.

Tav Falco remembers Alex Chilton

The Big Star show that turned into an Alex Chilton tribute at SXSW closed with this email from Gurdon's Tav Falco, who collaborated with Chilton in Memphis in the late 1970s, early 1980s in Tav Falco's Panther Burns.

More mush from the wimp (Beebe)

Can't be too careful with a 70 percent approval rating and one of the neediest states in the country when it comes to medical coverage.

What did the feds hear?

I just got an e-mail from Jeremy Peppas at The Times of North Little Rock.

The Huck$ter runs to form

You knew -- you just knew -- what Mike Huckabee would make of yesterday's health care reform vote.

Over to you

The commenting light is lit.

Lincoln's oppo research at work

She's tough. That's why I always thought those who wrote Blanche Lincoln off months ago were off-base.

Sheep and goats

The separation is easy when Congress faces a tough vote. Marion Berry's hand-picked successor, Chad Causey?

SXSW week continues

The Moaners deliver thick, electric, Hill Country garage in the most direct way possible.

NLR indictee: avoid court

Argenta News found a little irony at last night's North Little Rock City Council meeting when indicted Alderman Sam Baggett joined others in opposing revocation of a used car lot's permit.

The new story line

Is violently angry massive resistance to health care reform really a good political strategy for the long run as the positive benefits of the legislation begin taking effect?

Assault suspect in court

Tim Ballard, the high school principal at Abundant Life High School, pleaded not guilty this morning in Sherwood Municipal Court to a charge that he'd sexually assaulted a former student and his case was passed on to Circuit Court.

Mary Steenburgen stars as Weird Al's mom

All star cast here. Patton Oswalt as Dr. Demento.

The repealers

I'm with the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. I don't see the wisdom in the fervent Republican battle cry for repeal of health care reform.

The cost to Arkansas

Let me belabor Gov. Mike Beebe's objections to the recently passed health legislation a little bit.

Judicial activism

The biggest hope to defeat health care reform now lies with the U.S. Supreme Court.

Lincoln: Both sides now

If I'm criticizing Democrats for running away from historic health legislation, I can't very well criticize Sen. Blanche Lincoln for singing its praises, can I?

Tuesday To-Do: Paleface - The Moaners

Paleface PALEFACE/THE MOANERS10 p.m., White Water Tavern. Donations.With SXSW in full swing down the road in Austin, the squad of guys who book shows in the area is quick to break out its butterfly nets to nab the talent in transit.

No, No, No, No, No

I'm put in mind of the chorus of the oldie "Land of a Thousand Dances."  The Party of No has but one step -- massive resistance.

Prisoner of Wall Street

Money Honey from James McAllister on Vimeo. That would be John Boozman, in this video that the Gilbert Baker camp undoubtedly hopes will go viral.

Unholy alliance

Here's one from the political oddfellows hall of fame: An invite for a fund-raiser for Supreme Court candidate Courtney Henry, to be held at the Edgehill home of Chip and Cindy Murphy.

Football uber alles

School board/superintendent arrogance knows no bounds in Arkansas, but throw in a little football and it reaches even greater heights.

Chris Denny is the soundtrack to 'The C Word' trailer

Showtime's got a new show called "The C Word," which, from what I've heard, is sort of like "Breaking Bad," from a woman's perspective and without the meth.

Ettiem drops debut EP internationally

Doood!Andrew Morgan, who was in two of Little Rock's finest bands of the last decade, Chinese Girls and Eclipse Glasses Banda, has long dappled in electronic music.

The tide turns

New Gallup poll shows, 49-40, people think passing health bill was "good thing" vs. "bad for country."

Clipse coming, but there's a catch

Everyone's favorite coke rappers are headed to Central Arkansas Friday, April 2, but you gotta know someone to seem them.

Dinosaur Feathers in Arkansas

Looks like Dinosaur Feathers just picked up a last minute gig at Maxine's in Hot Springs tonight.

Daily Digest: 'Disfarmer', Levon doc, DGG Q&A, "True Blood"

This weekend, the Natural State represented big time at SXSW with a panel featuring David Gordon Green and the premiere of "Ain't In It For My Health," a documentary about Arkansas' favorite son (here's a clip).

Lovers of wacked out Arkansas film, rejoice: Phil Chambliss is on YouTube

If you don't watch anything else, please skip to 3:43. Only in clip form, but beggars can't be choosers.

Fill those bowls

There's a lot of food mentioned on here, so we talk about food a lot.  After all, this is Eat Arkansas.  But what about the thousands of Arkansans who go hungry each day?

The line is open

Post up, as my old high school coach used to say.

Brooks' job search

Noted this e-mail today from Micheal Daugherty, Little Rock School Board member, on the ongoing job searches of Roy Brooks, former LRSD superintendent, former eStem director:

Turnabout fair play

The Lincoln campaign has been planting fairly abstruse news articles about activities of software companies in which Bill Halter has been involved.

Will LRSD drop the bomb?

Big school news brewing. Chris Heller, attorney for the Little Rock School District, has written a letter to the Little Rock School Board that asserts that the state of Arkansas has violated its 1989 agreement to end the Pulaski desegregation case, particularly by how it has encouraged open-enrollment charter schools that promote segregated schools in Pulaski County.

Dog days

Fine footlongs at Perciful's Famous Hot Dogs on South (way south) Arch Street.

Twin Rivers Indians rise

Parents desperate to reverse the dissolution of their Northeast Arkansas school district by the state are declaring that their children are part of a minority group -- Native American -- and that the closure was discriminatory.

A&E News, March 25

Central Arkansas is notoriously ill suited for drinking and getting home safely. Public transportation doesn’t go late. There aren’t many cabs. Everything’s spread out. Which is where Friday Night Safe Ride Trolley aims to fill a void.

Why do the Kochs rage?

What, you wonder, possesses the billionaires and Chamber of Commerce to rage so against better health coverage for Americans?

Huckabee at the stove

A Montana newspaper focused on food and diet when Mike Huckabee made a recent appearance at a local Christian school.

Front-page news

@versharma on Twitter

Yes, No, Maybe

Thanks for the tip to this, Silverback. I also appreciated the front page on the free Metro newspaper distributed today in major cities around the U.S. Joe Biden was right on this one.

Bottom fishing for newspapers

Stephens Capital Partners of Little Rock is one of the buyers, for $20 million, of a Daytona Beach newspaper valued in 2006 at $300 million.

No improvement in reading scores

A sample of Arkansas 4th- and 8th-grade students showed no improvement in spring 2009 testing on scores made in 2007 on the National Assessment of Educational Progress.

Wednesday: Austin Lucas the latest to be recorded at WWT, 'Twilight' actor's band, Dreamfast and more

Austin Lucas. Bloomington folk singer/songwriter Austin Lucas, who's been big on the Revival Tour that's been here a couple times with the likes of Ben Nichols and Chuck Ragan, returns to town tonight to tape a live concert at White Water.

The greening of Charlie Daniels

Lights at the Capitol will be dimmed for an hour Saturday for Earth Hour, a global initiative to promote awareness of climate change.

What, no flag burning?

Talking Points Memo compiles the 10 worst Republican amendments proposed to gum up the vote on the reconciliation process and produce campaign commercial fodder for fall.

Who is the Tea Party?

Survey says the average 'bagger is an angry white Republican woman who loves Sarah Palin.

HCR: The numbers game

The best judge of public opinion on health care reform legislation (apart from November election results) will be trend lines of the aggregate of opinion polling over time.

Gossip gets Tron-y in new video

For "Pop Goes the World." Stick with it.

Merit pay questioned in Conway

The Log Cabin Democrat delves into teacher unhappiness about how state school merit pay money was doled out in the district.

The Party of No Shame

In addition to proposing pointless amendments to the health insurance bill to score political points, the Party of No is obstructing routine Senate business.

Kris Allen to leave toeprints in Little Rock

Kris Allen returns to Little Rock on April 8 for "One Day Without Shoes," a fundraiser for Tom's Shoes.

Daily Digest: Bill St., Alex Chilton and Tav Falco, Arkansas Bo

Dallas Observer profiles Rock Candy favorite Arkansas Bo, shouts out his new single, "The Dream."