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August 12, 2010

Vol 36 • No 49

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Shale shock

Drillers' rights top landowners.

The good Mike Huckabee

You read that headline right. Mike Huckabee does have points worthy of praise.

'Bonnie and Clyde' in NWA robbery?

I'd made a reference in an earlier thread to the report of a robbery of the Kut and Kurl salon in Gentry. An Arizona prison escapee may be responsible.

UA football seat prices going up

We told you so. Looks like the announcement about increases in required contributions for better seats to Razorback football games will be announced at a news conference this afternoon in Fayetteville and again Thursday in Little Rock.

Pat O'Brien joins car wars

Pat O'Brien, the Democratic candidate for secretary of state, plunges into the state car story.

Koon on Banksy doc

David Koon reviews British graffiti phenom Banksy's documentary "Exit Through the Gift Shop," about his protege, Thierry Guetta.

In Brief, Aug. 12

Thriving Ivory, Ryan Star, Free Micah, Sound of the Mountain, Adam Faucett, Dr. Rex Bell Jazz Trio, Ted Ludwig -- and that's just Thursday.

How stupid is this?

How the state chamber seeks business: By declaring our public schools suck.

Thumb down

Thumb down for Elvis Presley of Star City. And others.

Rick Crawford's bankruptcy

Now comes news that a Missouri hospital says Republican congressional candidate Rick Crawford, who declared bankruptcy to avoid repayment of credit card and medical bills, has no debt from 1993 medical services.

Middle-class values in the 3rd District

David Whitaker, the Democratic candidate for 3rd District Congress

Good with wood

Gene Sparling, Donnie Copeland at HAM.

That Bella Vista bypass

The State Highway and Transportation Department says it has lined up a $10 million federal grant to start work on the Bella Vista bypass, which would eventually extend I-540 to the Missouri line.

GOP hoping for an ethics strike on Beebe

The State Republican Party said today it has sought an Ethics Commission advisory commission opinion on transfers of excess campaign by a political candidate wiith a general election opponent to the candidate's political party.

Take it away

Over to you. We are over the hump.

Car wars: Part umpteen

As the Democrat-Gazette continues to report personal use of state vehicles, lawyers in the lawsuit over illegal use of state property continue to add heft to their lawsuit.

'Treme' to get more 'Wire-y' next season

Eric Overmyer, the co-creator of "Treme," talked to a packed house at the Clinton School tonight.

Can't we get along?

John Brummett aims for some middle ground in the Billionaires Club's nuclear attack on Little Rock public schools.

Weird film

The Arkansas Underground Film Fest returns to Hot Springs.

Legal laughs

'Gridiron' returns to The Rep with politicians in its sights.

To-Do List, Aug. 12-18

Laura and Lisa Ling, Gringo Star, KABF Rent Party, Tinsley Ellis, NPC Bodybuilding, Red Octopus 'Beach Blanket Bingo,' Pato Banton.

A&E News, Aug. 12

West Memphis 3 benefit with Eddie Vedder and Natalie Maines; Toast of the Town Readers' Poll; director considering Grisham film.

Assault on stepdaughter ends in guilty plea

LR woman avoids jail sentence in Texas.

Halter reflects

Answers questions on the campaign, his future.

Wyatt's pay as professor riles other ASU faculty

Former president is worth it, chancellor says.

Celebrating Mexico

Exhibits at UALR, ASI mark anniversaries.

Pondering the 'Razorback Subsidy'

Here's what's right, wrong and in-between with our politics.

The almighty bagel

Morningside does right by the roll-with-a-hole.

When math fails, GOP lies

The faulty logic (and misleading statements) behind keeping the tax cuts.

Eye on Arkansas, Aug. 12

The backsliding vegetarian

I was a vegetarian in New York. That lasted two months after I moved back to Arkansas.

Marriage equality's 'sheroes'

California judge's opinion on law outlawing gay marriage shows how far the women's rights movement has come.

The Insider, Aug. 12

LRHA says it's trying to find the pellet shooter.

Wrong mountains

The writer of the story about Miss Arkansas and Patsy Montana is a little mixed up on the mountain ranges of Arkansas.

Old masters

Artist Banksy sprays up a winning doc.

The Observer, Aug. 12

Wesley Woodward is a snake man.

Orval, Aug. 12

Big day for Chad Griffin

Arkansas native's effort to overturn gay marriage ban succeeds in federal court.

This Modern World, Aug. 12

What's Cookin', Aug. 12

Mobile vegetarian food cart to get rolling.

Words, Aug. 12

Say ciao to the Kresses

Got lira? Shop the Kresse art sale.

UA governance

The University of Arkansas Board of Trustees voted by phone today to endorse the plan to increase required donations for preferred seats at Razorback football games.

Thursday: Thriving Ivory, Adam Faucett, Adam Hunt Band

Anthemic pop-rockers Thriving Ivory (right) headline a three-act bill at Juanita's that includes "Rock Star: Supernova" contestant Ryan Star and folk-driven locals Free Micah, 9 p.m., $15.

Lottery money: Haves and have nots UPDATE

More than 25,000 college students have qualified for lottery scholarship. Huzzah, they and their families say.

Need more Arkansas polling?

Some folks can't get enough polling. Jason Tolbert, who's one of them, reports on a new joint venture between Roby Brock and Hendrix College to do polling on a regular basis on Arkansas politics, the economy and more.

Hillary for vice president?

Blake Rutherford has been following the ongoing chatter among the commentariat on the notion that President Obama would dump Joe Biden and install Hillary Clinton as his running mate for 2012.

Cell phones in the classroom

State rules still prohibit students from taking mobile phones to class. (Am I right?

Two takes on 'Eat Pray Love'

Today, the Democrat-Gazette offers a teaser of tomorrow's Phillip Martin movie review. Here's the money graph: Tone-deaf and mawkish, the movie stands as a vulgar monument to the New Age tendency to trivialize the numinous and to misread Emersonian American Individualism as permission to take whatever one deems essential to the nourishment of Self.

Philander gets $1.2 million

That Kresge Foundation grant to Philander Smith College to start a center for social justice is $1.2 million.

Gay marriage ban may be lifted next week

I'm watching a live feed from San Francisco where a crowd was awaiting a ruling from a federal judge on whether he'd allow same-sex marriages to proceed while an appeal continues of his ruling overturning the Prop.

AA Bondy can't sing louder than you can talk

I've never been one to preach decorum at a rock concert. Especially at a club. Those standing shouldn't have to move for those seated. Crazy dancing, super fans who pantomime lyrics, off-key drunken sing-alongers—it's all part of it.

Money transfers and ethics

John Brummett has offered some very useful background on the issue the Arkansas Republican Party is trying to make of a publicly reported transfer of money Mike Beebe made in 2006 from his campaign fund to the state Democratic Party.

Venting about vending machines

The Arkansas Lottery Commission has called an oral hearing on a proposal to amend the commission's operational rules to include ticket vending machines or TVMs.

Change in Pulaski school schedule

A news conference is set shortly by the Pulaski County School District to announce a change in bell schedules for the coming school year.

The line is open

You're on.

Weekend: The Crumbs, Guns 4 Roses, Synfest V

FRIDAY 8/13 Guns n' Roses tribute band, Guns 4 Roses, sha-na-na-nas Revolution, 9 p.m., $10.

Friday To-Do: Gringo Star

Atlanta's Brit-pop throwback act, Gringo Star, bomps back into town this Friday.

Friday To-Do: KABF Rent Party

KABF, the non-commercial radio staple of Little Rock, is hosting a fundraiser this weekend at Parrot Beach Cafe.

Friday To-Do: Laura and Lisa Ling

LAURA AND LISA LING11 a.m., Clinton Museum Store. Free.

Saturday To-Do: NPC Bodybuilding Championship

NPC BODYBUILDING CHAMPIONSHIP11 a.m., 7 p.m.; Robinson Center Music Hall. $27.95-$67.15.

Saturday To-Do: Tinsley Ellis

TINSLEY ELLIS9 p.m., Denton's Trotline. $15 In a world of music consistently divvied up into self-inflicted genres, Tinsley Ellis and his guitar manage to straddle the lines between thundering Texas blues, chunky Delta stomp and the soul fretting of B.B. King.

Saturday To-Do: Red Octopus Presents "Beach Blanket Blowout"


Saturday To-Do: Scott H. Biram

SCOTT H. BIRAM9 p.m., Juanita's. $7.

Pulaski school mess

Pulaski County School Board member Bill Vasquez has issued a broadside against the — oh, why not?

Mark Wilcox keeps on giving

Is there no bottom to stories about Mark Wilcox's abuse of the office of land commissioner.

Merit pay for politicians

Here's a story about candidates and public officials around the country swearing off full public pay.

Decision on cell phones deferred UPDATE

There was much interest yesterday in the question of cell phone possession and use in schools because of a proposal on the Little Rock School Board agenda to stiffen existing penalties for taking electronic devices to school.

The blah in the Spa

Maybe I'll be surprised. Gerard Matthews is in Hot Springs for the "forum" this morning featuring Sen. Blanche Lincoln and opponent John Boozman.

Education secretary in Little Rock

Education Secretary Arne Duncan will speak at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 25, at the Clinton Presidential Center as part of the Frank and Kula Kumpuris Distinguished Lecture Series.

Tonight: 2nd Friday Art Night

Mexican independence, American abstraction, for 2nd Friday.

Lincoln versus Boozman: the non-debate

Organizers of the Association of Arkansas Counties convention went out of their way to keep from calling today's "forum" a debate between Blanche Lincoln and John Boozman.

Gift for the AAC

Trinity Foundation gives $100,000.

Do like they say, etc.

Dr. No Boozman issued a news release the other day saying he opposed a "lame duck" session after the November election to deal with controversial issues.

Beebe rolling in the dough

Perhaps he should start spending it. From Beebe campaign:The Mike Beebe for Governor campaign will file its monthly financial report with the Secretary of State’s Office today for the month of July.

Parris Towers sniper report UPDATE

Kathy Wells of the Downtown Neighborhood Association reports on a meeting last night with Little Rock Housing Authority officials about the pellet gun sniper fire from the high-rise that has been directed at a neighbor for weeks.

Options for Little Rock schools

Former Little Rock School Board member and state senator John Riggs responded to John Brummett's column on the recent Chamber of Commerce attack on the Little Rock School District.

Sexy South Carolina

The latest in the perverse annals of South Carolina politics. The mystery man nominated by Democrats for U.S. Senate has been indicted on a federal porn rap.

Ride the Arkansas Times Blues Bus to the Blues Fest

The Arkansas Times is chartering a blues bus to take a group to Helena-West Helena to the Arkansas Blues and Heritage Festival on Saturday, October 9 to see Taj Mahal.

Ride the Blues Bus to Helena

The Arkansas Blues and Heritage Festival in Helena is in October and it's not too soon to be making plans.

Child dies in hot car

Child dies in car, Bentonville

Turn out the lights

The party's over for this work week. Talk among yourselves.

Foreclosed but not forgotten

The Baxter County sheriff's office tells the tale of a local couple who apparently decided to take it with them after their house was foreclosed by a bank.

Analysis: Lincoln v. Boozman

John Brummett reviews the Association of Arkansas Counties forum Friday featuring U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln and Rep. John Boozman.

Obama makes the right call

I guess I'm among the "professional left" —- to exaggerate my vocation — who's had reason to grump about President Obama.

Kurrus on charter school litigation

Little Rock School Board member Baker Kurrus, back from vacation, has circulated notes to other board members commenting further on the 4-3 Board vote several months ago to allow the district's attorney to argue in federal court that the state's ready approval of charter schools in Pulaski County contributes to segregation and violates the state's agreement in settling the decades-old desegregation lawsuit.

Gov. Beebe fires back at Keet

Roby Brock was on hand for a talk by Gov. Mike Beebe to start employees today and it was worth being there. He ripped Jim Keet.


Nothing much here. Over to you.

Bill Halter's future

John Brummett concludes that Lt. Gov. Bill Halter comes out of his losing race with Sen. Blanche Lincoln with positives.

How hot is it?

Hot enough to talk more, and seriously, about global warming and/or climate change. I know.

Here's to you

An open line.

Renauds on Dateline tonight

Little Rock documentary filmmakers Brent and Craig Renaud, who've made a career out filming in gritty locales all over the world, turn their cameras to the Chicago gang problem tonight on Dateline (6 p.m., NBC).

The New York miracle: Never mind

Looks New York City's reported progress in closing the achievement gap between black and white students was a product of faulty math.

Save Social Security

Don't be confused, Paul Krugman writes. Social Security is not in the danger described by critics.

Breakfast Trek 2: The Search for Spudnuts

It took two trips to finally acquire one, but now I realize why readers were so insistant I try a Spudnut.

Mike Huckabee: King of Iowa

A new Republican poll shows Mike Huckabee atop (albeit just 22-18) a field of potential GOP candidates for the Iowa Republican caucus of 2010.

Touchdown GOP UPDATE

The Republicans clearly think they've hit paydirt thanks to President Obama's support for freedom of religion (even if he did amend his ringing 1st Amendment statement to say it should not be read as an endorsement of the wisdom of a Muslim group to build a community center a few blocks from Ground Zero.)

Heat deaths at 10

The state Health Department puts the number of heat-related deaths this summer in Arkansas at 10.

"El Grito," "Freund" open today

Delilah Montoya's "Humane Borders Water Station," an archival digital photographic print mounted on aluminum, is one of the works by 33 Chicano artists in UALR's "El Grito (The Cry for Independence)" exhibit that opens today in Galleries I and II in the Fine Arts Center.

A tie goes to nobody

Circuit Judge Jay Moody has agreed with Republicans who arguef that it was not legal to call a special Democratic primary in Stone County to nominate a candidate for sheriff.

What if it had been a Hog hat?

A brief in Sunday's D-G noted a "media member" had been chided by Hogs coach Bobby Petrino and QB Ryan Mallett for wearing a Florida Gators cap to Saturday's Hog football scrimmage.

Suspect wounded in police chase

A State Police report says a man being chased by police was shot and wounded early this morning after ramming a trooper's car at the end of a police chase that started in Sherwood and ended at I-30 and Broadway in North Little Rock.

West Memphis 3 rally now at Robinson

More details today on the Aug. 28 rally and concert Aug. 28 for the West Memphis 3 featuring Eddie Vedder and Natalie Maines.

Venue change for WM3 rally

The "Voices For Justice" rally moves to Robinson Center Music Hall.

War Memorial now tobacco free

War Memorial Stadium — inside and out — is now officially tobacco free (that means cigarettes, snuff, chew, pipes, cigars).

True Blood: The villian we've been waiting for

Until this season, "True Blood" has been all about how vampires relate to humans. In a metaphoric sense, they've represented just about every racial, sexual and political anxiety with which contemporary society struggles. Meanwhile, on a more surface level, the central plot line has focused on the dynamic between Vampire Bill and Sookie. The long and short: forbidden fruit, the search for humanity, S&M. You know, just like "Twilight."

Funeral protest law overturned

A federal judge has ruled in a Missouri case that a state law attempting to ban protests near funerals is an unconstitutional abridgement of free speech.

Monday, Monday

An open line for you. I have to knock off early for an errand.

Bonnie Montgomery to film "Front Row" episode

Bonnie Montgomery to film episode of "On the Front Row."

Grading teachers

John Brummett weighs in against Los Angeles teachers unhappy about a ranking of teachers based on test scores of their students over a period of years.

Glenn Beck: I have a scheme

I've missed this. Glenn Beck, with support from Sarah Palin, plans a rally at the Lincoln Memorial (on Aug. 28, the 47th annivesary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech, to outline his so-called 100-year plan for America.)

Birthday dinner

Fine dining for that special occasion? Yeah, DeVito's of Eureka Springs is on the agenda. Trout? You'd better believe it.

GOP spending plans

Noted: An article in Politico today outlines a National Republican Congressional Campaign Committee spending blitz for the fall elections.

Trial set for accused military shooter

Fox 16's David Goins says a Feb. 23 trial date was set in circuit court today for Abdulhakim Muhammad, accused in the fatal shooting of a soldier outside a Little Rock military center.

Today's gun news

A man with an assault rifle and wearing a protective vest set fire to the McKinney, Tex., police station today and opened fire.

Lincoln on Islamic center

The Republican Party is i9ntent on making Islamophobia the cornerstone issue of Election 2010. GOP candidates are in a race to see which can be most opposed, if not to Islam itself, to an Islamic group's plans to convert a building it is already using into a community center.

Joyce Elliott: Reform Congress

Joyce Elliott, the Democratic candidate for retiring U.S. Rep. Vic Snyder's congressional seat, rolled out a new commercial today and a supporting plan with a number of congressional reform ideas.

First good look at Mattie Ross and Rooster Cogburn

At least if you haven't seen the Entertainment Weekly Fall movie preview. This follows a grainy one last month.

Dr. Dog coming to Searcy

Philadelphia's Dr. Dog bring its catchy multi-part harmonies to Harding University on September 10. The concert is open to the public.

Big grant for UAMS

UAMS says it will announce tomorrow "Arkansas' Largest-ever Grant." This just may mean it's UAMS' largest.

Rockst*r Jones drops a new mixtape

It's called "In the Company of Kings." Download it here.

El Dorado banker enters fraud plea

Mark Turner, a former El Dorado banker, has entered guilty pleas to two federal bank fraud counts.

Beebe announces more lottery money

Gov. Mike Beebe has prompted a further release of lottery money that he estimates will put money in the pockets of another 1,400 college students.

Can I get a second in Arkansas?

Here's an item from the Chronicle of Philanthropy (thanks S) that would be just a dandy idea in Arkansas.

Lincoln-Boozman debate set

lottery commission, first saw of higher numer. once had that, clarified lotterycommission, confident could proceed with additional mon3ey as well.

Blagojevich: Guilty

After two weeks of deliberation, a jury has convicted former Illiinois Gov. Rod Blagojevinch on at least one count — lying to federal agents.

The spat on the hat UPDATE

Here's an interview with Renee Gork, the radio talk show host in Fayetteville sacked for wearing a Florida Gators cap to a Hog scrimmage over the weekend.

The line is open

And I'm moving on.

College testing up; scores down

The state Education Department happily reports a sharp increase in the number of Arkansas students taking the ACT test for college admission.

Wednesday To-Do: Pato Banton

Reggae toaster Pato Banton comes to Revolution, 9 p.m., $12.

The right kind of sports coverage

I noticed this morning that the Democrat-Gazette continues to deem the fired radio reporter in Fayetteville unworthy of sports news coverage.

UALR hits fund goal; raises it

The University of Arkansas at Little Rock has announced it's hit its $75 million fund drive goal 18 months early and so it is pushing the target to $100 million.

Dr. Laura to quit radio

Laura Schlesinger says she's quitting radio because her "First Amendment rights have been usurped by angry, hateful groups."

Hope melons hit the big time

The Wednesday NY Times is a treat because that's the day of the weekly food section, far and away the best of its kind in the country.

Wednesday To-Do: 'Gridiron'

'GRIDIRON: A VIEW FROM THE BAR'6 p.m., Arkansas Repertory Theater. $60. People may not think lawyers are very funny, though they are the butt of many jokes. In Little Rock, though, they turn the tables, making fun of politicians and one another in the biennial musical comedy revue "The Gridiron," put on by the Pulaski County Bar Association and the Arkansas Repertory Theatre.

Kris Allen is stuck in the desert in new video

Kris Allen's video for "The Truth" debuts.

There goes the Muslim vote

Interesting. I didn't know Republicans got 80 percent of the Muslim vote in 2000.