How to buy a constitutional amendmentAugust 11, 2016
Vol 42 • No 49
A conversation with director Annalise Ophelian about her new documentary on an influential trans activist.
Michael Morton is spending big on a proposed constitutional amendment that would help shield his nursing homes from lawsuits, even while fending off allegations that he bribed a circuit judge.
Also, exposed in Pine Bluff, a tragedy in Sebastian County and more.
The opening afternoon session of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia was a rambunctious one. Lost in the clamor was an agreement by the forces of Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders to significantly revise the party rules related to the presidential nomination process.
It's a A cluttered confection.
Play at home!
Sherwood staple should be on your list.
Also, Dames, Dems and Drinks at Pavilion in the Park; Bi-Okoto Drum and Dance Theatre at the Faulkner County Library; 2nd Friday Art Night; Dolly Parton at Verizon; Cedell Davis at White Water; and "Do the Right Thing" at Riverdale 10.
Some have called Obama's remark the call to action the country needs this election. This is only partially true.
When only Teapublicans are allowed to vote, only Teapublicans will hold elective office!
The big conundrum is supposed to be why Donald Trump does so well among white working-class people, particularly men, who do not have a college education.
The second chapter in the 2016 Razorback Football Trilogy is an October that starts with a presumed breather in Little Rock.
Also, drifting away from trump, Hudson's downfall at ASU and more.
Driftwood lines the shore of Lake Maumelle visible from the state Highway 10 picnic area.
Also, Foul Play Cabaret and The Frontier Circus.
Supposedly 2016 is the Year of the Angry Voter. To hear the pundits tell it, Americans are just furious.
Arkansas Times reporters contacted election officials around the state to see how they had handled flawed felon data from the secretary of state. Responses varied dramatically.
The Observer hates boring you, Dear Reader, by writing about the weather. But there comes a point in every Arkansas summer where the sun has baked our noodle to the extent the synapses and neurons and assorted circuitry upstairs just ain't firing.
The Little Rock Port Authority has been approved for a $6.185 million federal transportation grant to improve its slackwater harbor.
The Atlantic scores with an essay on the silence, or even support, by evangelical preachers for Donald Trump as compared with the moral indignation they expressed at Bill Clinton's candidacy.
Funny man Mike Huckabee went reaching for a laugh line at a rally in Florida for Donald Trump yesterday and, as sometimes happens with the Huckster, the effort fell flat. Joking about the Zika virus, which can cause birth defects, is not exactly rib-tickling.
The Little Rock School District community advisory board meets this afternoon and a grassroots group plans concurrent release of a survey of attitudes about school closings.
The editorially right-wing Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported today on an amended filing by the Arkansas nursing home lobby on its $330,000 in contributions to the constitutional amendment campaign to discourage lawsuits against nursing homes and other medical providers.
The trial of a lawsuit by a man fired from the state treasurer's office was interrupted this morning when a defendant began experiencing chest pains.
U.S. Sen. Cory Booker will be on hand when the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign opens a campaign office at 8 a.m. Saturday in the Tanglewood shopping center on Cantrell Road.
Secretary of State Mark Martin sent a letter Tuesday to county clerks offering advice on ensuring that voters aren't improperly struck from voter rolls on basis of a list he distributed to the clerks.
KARK reports that the family of Billy Jones, jailed for the killing of Sebastian County Deputy Bill Cooper, has issued a statement of regret.
The state Board of Education today is considering an appeal of a finding that the majority-black Mineral Springs High School is in academic distress, a designation that could eventually end in the district's takeover.
Here's your open line and a roundup of news and headlines.
Attorney General Leslie Rutledge continues to expand her work in national legal arenas, particularly against efforts to protect the environment. She's more interested in protecting corporate interests.
After a day of searching, three ASU students missing since going caving in Independence County on Wednesday were reported found late Thursday afternoon.
An excited Donald Trump supporter shoots the finger at assembled reporters in Florida, another illustration of the need for care in rhetoric on the campaign trail.
KAIT reports on how the three Arkansas State students spent time waiting for rescue after getting lost in the Blowing Cave in Independence County. They talked with Casey Sherwood, who led two Japanese exchange students on the outing.
The Greenwood police department announced on Facebook this morning the recovery of Kina, a police dog missing after taking fire in the fatal encounter near Hackett in which Sebastian County Deputy Bill Cooper was killed.
The Central Arkansas Library System has begun a new podcast series, Primary Sources, to feature interviews with "interesting members of the community." First interview is with Baker Kurrus
Federal Judge Brian Miller today declared a mistrial in the defamation lawsuit against Jim Harris, chief deputy to state Treasurer Dennis Milligan, by David Singer, who was fired from an office job.
Arkansas State University System President Charles Welch says there's no truth to rumors circulating on campus that speculated former ASU President Les Wyatt might return as interim chancellor.
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has released her latest federal income tax return, a challenge to Donald Trump who's released nothing of this or recent years.
Will Attorney General Leslie Rutledge do anything about reports that payday lending with usurious interest rates cloaked as fees has re-emerged in North Little Rock? She's not saying.
Yet another federal judge, this one in Ohio, has struck down a state's effort to take Medicaid money away from Planned Parenthood because the organization performs abortions.
Another week done. Here's the open line and the roundup of news and comment by video.
The Arkansas Motion Picture Institute and the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce will host a screening of "Greater," a film depicting the remarkable rise of Brandon Burlsworth.
The group formed to fight the nursing home lobby's effort to amend the constitution to discourage most lawsuits over neglect, abuse and malpractice reported today that it has raised $420,430.
Mark Martin’s dereliction of duty, Michael Morton and a proposed constitutional amendment to limit medical lawsuits, the state Republican Party and pre-K, the state board of education and federal desegregation orders and more — all covered on this week's podcast.
U.S. Sen. Cory Booker won't appear in person as planned this morning at the opening of an Arkansas campaign office for Hillary Clinton. A weather complication forced cancellation of the appearance, but he'll speak by phone. The office in the Tanglewood Shopping Center at 7509 Cantrell Road opens at 8 a.m.
The Arkansas Democratic Party belatedly received information requested from Arkansas Secretary of State Mark Martin about his handling of information about voter eligibility, but the party isn't satisfied with the response and still may sue.
Bruce Bartlett, an architect of Ronald Reagan's 1981 income tax cut, has written today in th e New York Times that Donald Trump is all wrong for embracing Reaganomics in his recently announced plan that would amount to a bonanza for the wealthy.
The Washington County Election Commission will decide next week whether to create an early voting center on the University of Arkansas campus, providing readier access to the ballot for thousands of students and faculty concentrated in one place.
The open line with some new reading: A New York Times report about a failed prison labor project in Pine Bluff and an interview with Mike Huckabee, predicting victory in November for Donald Trump.
A rezoning of residential property on the northwest corner of Cantrell and University for restaurant or other commercial use will be topic of a public hearing at Tuesday night's Little Rock City Board of Directors meeting.
Entertainment in the Little Rock area last night included Dolly Parton at Verizon Arena and the Hall High School Class of 1966 reunion.
Arkansas conservative money turns up in a Missouri race for attorney general, just another indication of how rich conservatives like the Koch brothers are using state legal officers to wage their war against environmental regulation.
Heres the damp Sunday evening open line. News includes robbery of Olympic swimmers in Rio and violence in Milwaukee following a fatal police shooting.
As the Arkansas secretary of state moves closer to a clearance of a Ten Commandments monument on the Capitol grounds (and a likely lawsuit), other groups are making plans to be heard, such as The Satanic Temple.
The Washington Post reports — and an education authority explains — why the NAACP national convention recently approved a resolution calling for a moratorium on approval of privately managed charter schools financed with public money.
If you’ll recall a moment (and there are many) when a Disney princess is dancing through the air and just when her foot is about to make contact with ground that isn’t there, a “step” (or lilypad, or cloud, or what have you) appears beneath her feet, then you know what it looks like when Dolly Parton floats around the stage at Verizon Arena — or any large arena, for that matter.
Former Little Rock lawyer Steven Eugene Cauley, who earlier this year completed an 86-month federal prison sentence, was found dead Friday in Hot Springs. .
The group hoping to win voter approval for three more casinos in Arkansas turned in additional signatures today for checking by the secretary of state.
Prosecuting Attorney Henry Boyce of Newport announced today that James Dexter Yancy, 24, of Pocahontas had been arrested on an initial charge of manslaughter in the fatal shooting early Saturday of his roommate Nick Wayne Dawson.
Here's the Monday open line and a roundup of news and opinion.
Arriving just in time to commemorate India's Independence Day, Gowariker's “Mohenjo Daro” constitutes an exquisite use of myth to critique our current place in—and treatment of—this world.
Trial begins today in Hot Springs of Circuit Judge Wade Naramore on a negligent homicide charge in the hot car death of his 18-month-old son Thomas last summer.
The Arkansas Health Care Association — the lobby group for the nursing home industry — reported Monday that it had put $250,000 more, for a total of $580,000 so far into the constitutional amendment to cap awards in damage lawsuits (negligence, malpractice, etc.) at $250,000 and cap attorney fees at a third of the award.
Here's a bit of minor league funny business in a race for Arkansas legislature — small potatoes, but illustrative of politics in blood-red Arkansas, where faith and branding "trump" facts just about every time.
A powerful lobbyist invites others of her station to a fund-raiser for a member of the Arkansas legislature at — where else — a private club started by another member of the Arkansas legislature.
Some vigorous discussions are underway at Arkansas State University in the aftermath of the sacking of Timothy Hudson as chancellor of the Jonesboro campus following revelations about mishandling of a foreign study program in which his wife was a paid contract worker.
Sad news from KARK. Razorback pole vaulter Lexi Weeks of Cabot is out of the Olympics competition in Rio.
John Miller-Stephany has been named producing artistic director of Arkansas Repertory Theatre to succeed Bob Hupp, who's moved to a job in Syracuse.
I'm Opening statements have begun in Hot Springs in the trial of Circuit Judge Wade Naramore on a misdemeanor negligent homicide charge in the 2015 death of his 18-month-old son, Thomas, who was left in a carseat for about half a July day when the temperature reached over 100 degrees. We have an outline and insight on the instructions that will eventually guide the jury.
We’re in Week 3 of Little Rock Restaurant Month, which means you’ll find discounts at eateries in West Little Rock through Aug. 21.
The Arkansas Blog mentioned last week new reporting about Arkansas's failure to join the rest of the country in moving away from confinement of juveniles. There's been fallout as well as new data illustrating how far Arkansas lags behind other states. The reporter who started it all explains for the Arkansas Blog.
The Garland County sheriff's office reports two arrests Monday after discovery of a stolen gun in a student's vehicle at Jessieville High School.
A Rogers police officer has reported a theft from his unmarked police car an AR-15 and other ammo and gear.
High irony alert in light of the earlier post about how Arkansas sets the curve, a bad one, for confining juveniles. The state is about to further the curve in the wrong direction.
Donald Trump named 64 people today to an agricultural advisory panel. They included Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge, who last year married a farmer.
Sylvan Hills High School plans a big welcome home tomorrow for alumnus Jeff Henderson, who won the Olympic gold medal in the long jump.
Lauren Haynes, an associate curator at the Studio Museum in Harlem, has been hired as curator of contemporary art at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, the museum announced today. Haynes is a specialist in African-American modern and contemporary art and has curated a number of exhibitions for the Studio Museum, including the current exhibit on Alma Thomas. She holds a BA from Oberlin College.
The Tuesday open line and video news report.
The Weather Service reported 1.97 inches of rain in Little Rock by 3 p.m. today, easily a record for the date since recordkeeping began 142 years ago.
Rep. Greg Leding of Fayetteville made a presentation before the Arkansas Legislative Council today on his idea to institute a "no-loan" element to help lower income students get through college without crushing debts.
John Lyon of the Arkansas News Bureau reports on a legislative committee review of telemedicine rules enabled by new state law.
An important new report : A study of the sharp rise in the number of women, many of them mothers, held in jail. It's from the Vera Institute of Justice and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation’s Safety and Justice Challenge.
The Little Rock City Board denied last night the appeal of a Planning Commission rejection of a proposal to rezone two residential lots at the corner of Cantrell and University for commercial use, perhaps a restaurant.
TheatreSquared announced Lights Up! For Access, an initiative that provides free or reduced-cost access to all performances in the company's current season for low-income populations.
The prosecution is completing its case this morning in the trial of Circuit Judge Wade Naramore of Hot Springs on a misdemeanor negligent homicide charge in the death of his 18-month-old son, Thomas, last summer. He was forgotten in his car seat in his father's car on a hot July day and died from the heat.
Kent Walker continues its "Words and Curds" series tonight, featuring Kara Bibb, Zachary Crow, Claudia Cerna. Rigsby St. Claire and an open mic session.
Former state Rep. Harold Copenhaver has announced he's running for mayor of Jonesboro.
The Wednesday open line and a roundup by video of news and comment.
Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families reports the not unsurprising results of a pilot program from the Arkansas legislature to drug-test recipients of certain welfare payments — temporary assistance to needy families.
Word is circulating of the resignation Tuesday of a Little Rock school principal, a veteran of the school district. Superintendent Michael Poore has provided background on a situation still in flux.
Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge can't be moved to do anything about unconstitutional payday lending in the state that pays her, but a day rarely passes that she can't mess in the politics of some other jurisdiction.