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October 5, 2006

Vol 4 • No 38

Up North

Our new blog from NWA is up running, including a mention that Karl Rove may be making a trip there to shore up the wobbly base.

Facts on polling

When every single poll -- without exception -- shows your candidates being beaten, you have to come up with something.

The Huckster stumps

At last, The Huckster does a little campaigning for Arkansas candidates. Stubby Stumbaugh, soon to be thrashed by U.S. Rep. Marion Berry, reports that The Huckster is taking a break from Iowa long enough to do a little traveling with him Thursday and that he'll also make appearances for Chee Chee Tamburo in Heber Springs and Billie Sue Hoggard in Jonesboro.

Hastert is toast

Bank on it. Or enjoy the gaping political wound.

Sis boom baahhh

The Student Government Association Senate at UALR has reportedly adopted a resolution urging the administration to start a football program.

Pressing Boozman

Woody Anderson keeps firing at silent John Boozman on the Foley scandal. Release on jump.l

Live debate blogging

The debate is streaming nicely here. Early scoring: Beebe.

The Observer

The Observer rides an 18-year-old mountain bike with a plastic basket on the front. Nevertheless, we signed up to ride in the Big Dam Bridge 100, also known as the Big Dam Bridge 1,000, since that was how many people showed up.

The GOP fire wall

The good news for the national Republican Party is the bad news. No political party in history goes into a congressional election carrying heavier freight.

Big game hunter

I can only wish I was half the man Mike Huckabee is (but then again, with his health kick mania the past two years, he’s half the man he once was). A recent article chronicled Huckabee’s big game excursion in Wyoming, where he felled an antelope from

Bring 'em on

I’ve learned from a reliable source, probably the same one that told him, that my name is on that same al Qaeda “hit list” that Bill O’Reilly claims that his is on.

Big Dam news

As if its name weren’t in the bright lights already, the just-opened Big Dam Bridge has more news: By Christmas, the pedestrian/bicycle bridge should be bathed in green and red beamed from state-of-the-art LED lamps.

Tortured logic

Even by the Mark Pryor standard — which allows for the routine craven capitulation to the Bush administration — his vote last week in favor of the Military Commissions Act was a colossal outrage.


Editorial cartoon

This Modern World

Football comes first

If you read last week’s Arkansas Business, you found out what Arkansans care the most about — Razorback football.

Wholly in praise of ‘Half Nelson’

We've finally seen the anti-Teacher Recruiting movie; a dark gem of a film called “Half Nelson.”


A short-sighted sheriff shares space with Ernest T. Bass.

Smart Talk

This week: Good writers; grants for Argenta; Garrett's Law babies.

No grounds for alarm

Dr. Rebecca Esch, the new owner of Sufficient Grounds, promised new and fresh directions, some in consultation with adviser Kathy Webb, the successful operator of Lilly’s Dim Sum Then Some, not to mention Hillcrest’s rising state legislator. The good news

Politics is local

An incumbent isn’t running for Arkansas governor for the first time since 1978. The race should be exciting, but, as an editorial in The Leader said recently, it has been “painfully mechanical.”

The week that was Sept. 27-Oct. 3

IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR … TRAVELERS. The Little Rock National Airport continues to explore establishing direct service to Mexico. Olé.

The blues survives

Known not that long ago as the King Biscuit Blues Festival, the Arkansas Blues and Heritage Festival continues on with more than 60 music acts on three stages next to the Mississippi River in Helena Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 5-7. The festival is fre

More fan fodder

The next source of Hog discord could be a book on recruiting of high-profile Springdale players.

Book notes: Not making this up

Jack Moseley, the longtime newspaper editor and community fixture at Fort Smith, has published a plucky and entertaining little auto-biographical memoir titled “Up From Haggerty Hill: A Journalist’s Journey.” It’s from Xlibris Corp, the Internet publisher

What's Happening in October

Telling it like it is

After the first fall meeting of the Little Rock Touchdown Club, Bruce James stands off to the side of the Embassy Suites’ banquet hall talking with friends. An elderly man, who like so many in the crowd has a deep devotion to the University of Arkansas Ra

What we're reading

The top 10 bestsellers from three local bookstores. Data is most recent available.

Win a T-shirt

The University of Arkansas doesn't like people who pass out T-shirts without its authorization. We're going to do it anyway.

McDaniel in the lead

Stephens poll on the race for attorney general: McDaniel 53 DeLay 28 New polling continues to show most Arkansans favor an Iraq troop withdrawal.

What do the polls mean?

Brummett notes the wide differences in various polling, but notes, too, that every one known favors Beebe.

A: Only if he's wearing a number around his neck

Q: Would you pay $500 to have your picture taken with Karl Rove? That's the tab next Tuesday as Bush's brain comes to Northwest Arkansas to raise money for the Arkansas Republican Party.

Richard Roeper gives early Oscar predictions

BEST PICTURE1. "Flags of Our Fathers"2.

The Departed

on screen at Breckenridge, Rave and Riverdale for those of you in Little Rock.  You check out showtimes at or wait until tomorrow's paper.

Fair game -- UPDATE

Gunner DeLay knocks Dustin McDaniel today for taking a bunch of campaign contributions from utility sources.

Academic twofer

The University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law today announced a concurrent degree program.

From NWA: Simple T-shirts spark philosophical debate

Rainer Sabin of the Northwest Arkansas Times delves into the Houston Nutt T-shirt situation and the debate it has created, and it asks a pertinent question: Is Houston Nutt the football prgram; do you have to support Houston Nutt to be supporting the program?

Love Is A Battlefield

Uhhhh, friends just keep on breaking up...

Hog wild

Our cover story this week about unhappiness in Razorback Nation (including the UA's audacious smackdown of a guy who made this T-shirt with a cartoon image of the Head Nutt) has lit up the Hog football message boards.

Fly a fortress

The Experimental Aircraft Association is barnstorming the country with its restored B-17 Flying Fortress and the stops include a visit in North Little Rock Thursday Oct. 12.

J.R. and Henry's Sports Column: Auburn in a blowout, and other UA problems

J.R. and Henry: A plot thwarted, a nation saved Add band director to Houston Nutt’s expanding resume.

Uh oh

In a state so gobbled up with deer hunting that people have the temerity to ask for an excuse from a court appearance because of deer season, this sounds like alarming news.

All the news from Lake Woebegon . . . and it's not good

Sometimes our great comedians can make more sense of the insanity around us than all the so-called pundits put together.Take Garrison Keillor, for instance: Congress's Shameful Retreat From American Values    By Garrison Keillor    The Chicago Tribune     Wednesday 04 October 2006     I would not send my college kid off for a semester abroad if I were you.

The Mind of Matt: Wrapping up Detroit, some newer movies and food

Matt Smith checks in still a little groggy from a big trip to Detroit, but obviously not hungry anymore after a visit to some area restaurants that he recommends:

If I hear the name Mark Foley one more time.............

    I'll admit, I'm getting a little tired of hearing about Mark Foley, sexual explicit instant messages, and who-knew-what-when.

The First Amendment and Watson Chapel

We've mentioned previously the folks in Watson Chapel who are unhappy about the school district uniform policy.

Hastert must not resign

Why shouldn't House Speaker Dennis Hastert not resign? (And he proclaimed today that he would not, period.)

What Denny said . . .

AUTHOR: RLR EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 10/06/2006 03:50:28 AM Published on BuzzFlash ( Ruth Lopez: Time to Connect the Dots By BuzzFlash Created 10/04/2006 - 2:43pm by Ruth Lopez -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- It is time -- way past time -- to put the Jeff Gannon story right up there next to the Mark Foley story and to ask some very hard questions. The Bush White House is shocked -- shocked!! -- to hear of this slimy Congressman -- but they are already letting their minions use it as an excuse to turn the focus from pedophilia to gay-bashing -- all the nasty right-wing talking heads are already out dispensing fake statistics that blame tolerance of gays for Foley's preying on children. Never mind the apparently straight men, like Denny Hastert, who may be accessories after the fact for covering up for Foley; blame gays. Let them hang themselves with gay bashing instead of focusing on their failure to protect minors from sexual predators. It's time to talk openly about the closeted gay connection between the White House, the very top of the GOP, and Congress. Time to play six degrees of separation with promiscuous gay sex in the Bush White House, the Bush Administration, the Bush Congress and Bush's GOP. Time to connect the dots: Who gave a male homosexual prostitute named Jeff Gannon repeated access to the White House? Who was he visiting? Why did he have repeated over-night stays in the White House? Where was Mr. Gannon when he wasn't at the White House? Did he also visit Congress? Did he socialize with Congressmen? Which ones? Foley, perhaps? Did they take Congressional pages out to party together? Share emails? No one has asked if Foley had others, besides pages, present for any of the soirees he was trying to set up. Time to ask, don't you think? What connection does Jeff Gannon have to Ken Mehlman and other closeted gays in the Bush Administration? And, if, as the right-wing chattering monkeys are saying, tolerating gays in high offices is to blame for this latest Republican lapse of morals and common decency -- then who exactly is gay in Bush's White House, the top levels of the GOP, and Congress? Who has been lying -- whether by denying or refusing to admit their sexual orientation? And why have the lied? Was it to hide something? Last night I heard Joe Scarborough and others in the GOP and the press talking about what a well known secret it was that Foley was gay. OK then, who else do they know about who has been covering up their orientation? Scarborough, et al, insisted that Foley was a good friend and a "great guy" and they were all sooooo surprised about this. If that is true, then who else do they know is covering up their homosexuality that might, unbeknownst to them, be using Congress as their personal gay sex playground? Who else would they be shocked, shocked!! to hear was up to the same things? Is the GOP eagerness to throw Hastert under the bus just as much to stop any further revelations as it is to bury the Foley story before the election? Foley may well be just the tip -- no pun intended -- of this scandal, and Jeff Gannon may very well be a part of it, too. Someone in the GOP, or the Bush Administration, got Gannon press access to get into the White House, over and over again. Who? Was it another closeted gay? There has never been any real investigation into Gannon's access. It's overdue. And is there ANY connection between Foley, Gannon and anyone in the Bush White House? Because, what if this wasn't just Foley? What if there are others, enough to make it more worthwhile to cover this up rather than clean it out when it first came up? Not just Congressmen, what about staffers, GOP party hacks, lobbyists? If it was just Foley, Hastert and the GOP could have taken him aside and told him to step down in time to get someone else into his solidly Republican seat. They had enough time when this first came up, why didn't they? Are there enough others that it was better to cover it up than risk blowing the lid off of something massive and irreparable? Who else in the Bush Administration is hiding their orientation? And, why? What, if anything, is the Gannon connection? I think we should spend the next month pounding this issue, over and over and over. Make the Bush White House and the GrOPpers spend the next month denying and explaining the connection, or lack thereof, between Foley in Congress and Gannon in the White House. And let's be VERY clear about the gay-bashing aspect of this: when a straight person is accused of sexually preying upon and abusing a child, nobody says the problem is their heterosexuality. Likewise, the issue here isn't homosexuality. This is about the sexual abuse of minors and the connection between hiding sexual orientation and hiding abusive sexual practices against children. Ruth Lopez Orlando, FL A BUZZFLASH READER CONTRIBUTION I Agree with Ruth ,ask the hard question MSM PLEASE ,,,,,

Manohla Dargis weighs in on 'The Departed'

and she has positive things to say. Each Scorsese film comes freighted with so many expectations, as well as the enormity of his own legend, that it’s a wonder the director can bear the weight.

NY Times critic cranky about N.Y. Film Festival

writes Manohla Dargis, . . . Good, bad and sometimes just blah, most of the selections in the coming week support Mr. Peña’s assertion that the festival represents something like the state of the art.

What the critics are saying about 'The Departed'

out Friday in Little Rock Martin Scorsese has stopped chasing that elusive Oscar long enough to return to his roots with the crime thriller "The Departed," his sharpest film in a decade - and the most entertaining major studio release this year.  - Lou Leminick, NY Post . . .

Armchair critic has support for his speculation

that three of the five best actor nominees will be minority actors.  Reuters critic Art Spiegelman predicts that Forest Whitaker, Will Smith and Derek Luke (Catch a Fire) will all be nominated.  Whitaker, he argues, leads the pack.  He has Dreamgirls out, which is a surprise.  Yet another critic with the same predictions for best actress.  BEST PICTURE1.

Lead or Supporting?

Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times weighs in on the predicament facing many actors as the publicity campaigns for Oscar gold begin. 

L.A. Times Carina Chocano on 'Little Children'

 The movie begins as a satire, rolling inexorably forward — like the meatball in the camp song — building steam, mass and weight until it completely obliterates every bogus piety in its path.

Keep the comments coming

Armchair critic gets involved in Oscar talk, Interesting, although I see no fun, daring surprises on any of his lists.

AP raves about 'Little Children'

But “Little Children” is even more reminiscent of the work of Douglas Sirk — all dreamy, creamy idyll with the throbbing of unfulfilled longing underneath.

Scorsese movies

just stumbled on this from  Two critics pick their 5 favorite Scorsese movies. Here are mine: 1.

Carpenter is named Unit Manager of St. Joseph’s Intensive Care Unit

Monica Carpenter, RN was recently named Unit Manager of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at St. Joseph’s Mercy Health Center

Bruce James calls the Hogs

Arkansas vs. Auburn

Cable Guy on stage

Larry the Cable Guy, the country comedian and former member of the Blue Collar Comedy team with Jeff Foxworthy and Bill Engvald, brings his solo “The Right to Bare Arms Tour” to Alltel Arena on Saturday, Oct. 7, starting at 8 p.m.

Sailing along

Wildwood kicked off its 2006-07 Opera Season last Friday with Gilbert and Sullivan’s “H.M.S. Pinafore.” The show overcame a slow start to finish on top with its theme of love levels all men.

What's cooking-Capsule reviews

What's cooking: Nu news. Capsule review:

Random funniness

The Second City’s “Truth, Justice or The American Way” is fast paced, funny and irreverent. The title just about says it all. Just about.

A real driving force

It’s fun to sit across a table from someone as passionate as Carol Dolan is about cars, the monthly Cruisin’ in the Rock and next week’s Sonic Big Cruisefest. Her excitement just grips you and tells you that if you’re not there, you will be missing out on

Capturing Cash

The biggest problem with autobiographies is the most obvious: They’re written by their subjects. Given that writing an autobiography might be the ultimate display of both arrogance and narcissism (an act that assumes, first, that people WANT to read a

The polarizing of Razorback Nation

Hog football coach Houston Nutt hasn’t kept up with his early success or his promise of contending for a national championship. Expecting great things, the fan base has fractured, with a strong segment of dissidents.

Hill steps into interim role as St. Joseph’s Emergency Department Unit Manager

Dana Hill, RN recently agreed to step into the interim role of Emergency Department (ED) Unit Manager for St. Joseph’s Mercy Health Center.

Flipping Whigs

The Whigs, hailing from Athens, Ga., have been called the “best unsigned band in America” by Rolling Stone. With their Elvis Costello-esque pop rock, they’re distinctly on the road to bigger and better things. They will return to Sticky Fingerz this Thurs

Still got it

Frankie Valli still has it. The falsetto range that the original Jersey Boy made so famous first as a member of the original Four Seasons and later in his hit-making solo career was on full display at Reynolds Performance Hall.

The political publisher

Being a pinko-liberal raised in the rubble of the Little Rock newspaper wars, I’d been left with the idea that Democrat-Gazette owner and publisher Walter Hussman was something like a cross between a bridge-dwelling troll and Mr. Burns from “The Simpsons.

Pops premiere

The jazzy vocal group Five By Design will join the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra for the kickoff of the ASO’s Pops, Live! series Friday and Saturday, Oct. 6-7, at Robinson Center Music Hall.

St. Joseph’s names Burton 2 West Medical Surgical-Pediatrics Unit Manager

St. Joseph’s Mercy Health Center recently named Jennifer Burton, RN, BSN Unit Manager of the 2 West Medical Surgical-Pediatrics Unit.

TV highlights, Oct. 5

MODERN MARVELS: INK 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7 The History Channel (Comcast Ch. 70) EYES ON THE PRIZE: 1960-1964 8 p.m. Monday, Oct. 9 AETN (Comcast Ch. 3, Broadcast Ch. 2) SHOOTOUT: NORTH HOLLYWOOD 10 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 10 The History

Take the bite out of the burger tax

Average restaurant customers in Little Rock probably have no idea what a complicated transaction they enter into when they order a burger and a beer — or a Coke or a Jack Daniel’s on the rocks, or, most complicated of all, a burger and a Jack-and-Coke.

How Dare Thee Blaspheme Our Holy Football Coach?

I'm not nearly ready to give up on Coach Nutt, but I'm ready to give up on his legal team and marketing guru.

Daniels cruising

Stephens Media poll results: Huge lead for Charlie Daniels in the race for secretary of state.

Boozman-Huck sidestep

Silent Rep. John Boozman has finally reacted -- angrily -- to challenger Woody Anderson's suggestion that the Republican congressman was too close to the House leadership, which covered up concerns about resigned Rep. Mark Foley.  Let's recap: Boozman hardly knows Foley. To say he was on the whip team with him is akin to saying he's a member of the same Lions Club.

Philip Martin gives 'The Departed' an A

Martin Scorsese's The Departed is close to a perfect movie, a poignant cousin to The Great Gatsby and as violent as America itself.  It is wicked good . . .

Philip Martin weighs in on the Oscar race

"It's too early to be talking about potential Oscar nominees," says Arkansas Democrat Gazette film critic Philip Martin.  While not in the business of making predictions, Martin notes, "I'll say right now that Martin Scorsese deserves to win a Best Director Oscar for The Departed.  I've seen that film, reviewed it, and I can vouch for its quality.  But I'll also say that Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu deserves to win for Babel, Pedro Almodovar deserves to win for Volver, and Todd Field deserves to win for Little Children.

Lots of 'Departed' coverage in Today's Dem Gaz

Philip Martin's review as well as some commentary on The Departed and the Oscar race.  I've posted both.  As well, Philip's got excerpts of news conference with Matt Damon, Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese.

Wal-Mart's war on wages

Paul Krugman explains why the outlook isn't so rosy for those on the lower tier of the job market:

Terrible tailgating

Little Rock doesn't get much out of the Hogs anyway. Now local Hog fans are grumbling on chat boards and radio about the move of the UA-Monroe (now there's a power) game to 11 a.m.

See you in court, Watson Chapel -- UPDATE

The Watson Chapel School District has followed through on its threat to suspend students who wore black armbands to school today in protest of the school district's uniform policy.

Follow the money

USA Today reports that both Republicans on the House ethics panel looking into Speaker Hastert's failure to act in the Foley scandal have received money from his PAC.

Blog watch

The Hog Lawyer rips up the UA legal counsel's absurd notion that the university can prevent a cartoon T-shirt parody of Houston Nutt.

Massive resistance

Schools with far better athletic teams and far richer tradition have given up on using Indians as mascots, because it's offensive to Indians, but not Arkansas State University.

First soda, now snacks

Former President Bill Clinton announced today that major food companies had voluntarily agreed to work to putting healthier snacks in schools -- by lowering fat, sugar, salt and portion size.

Boomer Huckster

Here are details of The Huckster's foray next week to help Oklahoma candidates and raise a little money for his presidential exploratory PAC.

Guns, gays and gosh-awful schools

OK. OK. The A$a campaign wants everyone to know that the NRA is running radio ads for their candidate.

Friday night open line

Fire away.

Art Auction to Raise Money for Art Therapy in Nursing Homes

All proceeds from this silent and live art auction will be used to start art therapy project in nursing homes in Arkansas.

Beebe for governor; Asa for mayor

Few people watch these gubernatorial debates, and, anyway, George W. Bush demonstrated that you needn’t be able to talk or reason to win elections.

The debate winner

Brummett beheld the gubernatorial debate earlier this week and arrived at some clear-cut conclusions. One: A$a proved himself supremely qualified to be -- mayor of Paron.

Republican House afire

NY Times chimes in with those who think the Foley scandal puts more Republican seats -- and balance of power -- in the House in play.

Family values

E.J. Dionne sees the Foley scandal as another opportunity to re-examine "family values" in the political context.

The cancer on the presidency

Top Karl Rove aide quits; she traded information to felon lobbyist who provided her gifts.

And the Emmy goes to . . .

Flip D. Chanel, the Hempwallace TV observer, votes the award for most depressing television show of 2006 to (naw, it's not the Bill O'Reilly toxic waste dump) the "Moyers on America" show that aired earlier this week on AETN and PBS.The award is given not because of the revelations of pervasive criminal activity involving lobbyists and members of Congress but because of the discussion that followed the documentary portion of the show.In the discussion both Norm Ornstein, the veteran D.C. observer, and Thomas Frank, the fellow who wrote the book, "What's the Matter With Kansas," talked about how the culture of corruption is worse than they've seen in the three decades Ornstein has been in the capital.Here's the depressing part: Both agreed that, even if widespread and vigorous reforms were to begin as early as November 8, it's not likely the criminal corruption could be reined back in within our lifetimes.Pass the Zoloft.

YouTube - Arkansas Style

As someone with an especially short-term attention span, I have learned to love YouTube, a new Internet phenomenon.

Forecast: fair weather

Who was that who said they didn't like Houston Nutt? Who wished Frank had hired Tommy Tuberville?

Saturday night

I'm again covered with family commitments. Have at it.

High profile wedding

Tonight's social notes: We're happy to say we witnessed a wedding tonight. Judge Vic and Susan Fleming's daughter Elizabeth married Emmett Weindruch tonight at First Presbyterian, with a reception after at the Arkansas Arts Center It's nice to see kids you knew as toddlers grown, with big jobs and great energy and good ideas.

High profile wedding

Tonight's social notes: We're happy to say we witnessed a wedding tonight. Judge Vic and Susan Fleming's daughter Elizabeth married Emmett Weindruch tonight at First Presbyterian, with a reception after at the Arkansas Arts Center It's nice to see kids you knew as toddlers grown, with big jobs and great energy and good ideas.

Dear GAP: Stop It. Right Now.

Seriously.  You know what I mean, GAP.  You and your creative agency, Laird+Partners.  Just stop it.  Leave our precious Audrey Hepburn alone, could you?  The dance scene in "Funny Face" was sweet, charming, and endearing.  But cutting Ms. Hepburn out and having her shill your sweat-shop-sewn, generic American uniforms to the backdrop of AC/DC?  That's just wrong.  It was wrong when it was Fred Astaire posthumously hawking vacuum cleaners, and it's wrong now.  So stop it.Also, GAP?  During her "Funny Face" heyday, Ms. Hepburn was certainly a tall, skinny drink of water, appropriately suited for "skinny pants" and the like.  As a matter of fact, she was 5'7" tall, and weighed in at a whopping 110 pounds.  Just like so many American women of today!  A full 2% of American women, I believe the statistic is, fit that body type now.  So, good luck (but not really) with your brilliant ad campaign, and the sales of a record number of "skinny pants," GAP!I think you're gonna need it.

Candidates fumble for answers

I'm sensitive to demands on politicians. They're on the live stage in front of television cameras engaging in a debate. They've been primed by advisers on how to pose and where to turn and what to emphasize in nearly every conceivable circumstance.

Trying again

OK.  Trying again to see if both the posting and comment functions are working.

Chatting it up with Altman and Keillor

On the eve of the DVD release of 'A Prairie Home Companion' the AP sits down with Robert Altman and Garrison Keillor. 

Robin Williams for President?

  This is the latest film by Barry Levinson staring Robin Williams as a talk show of the Jon Stewart mold who runs for President.  Unfortunately, if the trade reviews are any indication, this film doesn't do what it could have done, and perhaps brilliantly with Robin Williams on screen, which is to demonstrate what an intelligent, sharp-wit could do if he were elected President.  Says Hollywood Reporter, Too bad "Man of the Year" didn't have the courage of its convictions -- to say something meaningful and shrug off the fallout from the outraged extremes of the political spectrum.

The people's house

Looking for something to do on a glorious Sunday? In case you missed the first naming ceremony, they're dedicating for the second time today the Janet M. Huckabee Grand Hall at the Governor's Mansion.

The week ahead

With The Departed still on my mind, here's what interests me in theatres this weekend: Man of the Year starring Robin Williams opens in wide release.  Market Street Cinema claims to be screening The Science of Sleep.      On October 20th Flags of Our Fathers, Marie Antionette, and The Prestige all open in wide release.  It also appears that we'll get The Last King of Scotland in LR on the 20th.

Where's my Sherrybaby?

Another weekend without this film starring BSR IT Girl Maggie Gyllenhaal.  Looking for information on LR release dates for Little Children, Running with Scissors, and Infamous.  If you know, let me know.

A debate moment

Brummett revisits the gubernatorial debate for a second time today. He hones in on the moment when the candidates were asked if they'd ever changed their mind on anything.

A debate moment

Brummett revisits the gubernatorial debate for a second time today. He hones in on the moment when the candidates were asked if they'd ever changed their mind on anything.


LA Times adds to the coverage with an interview with a former page who had sex, several years after his paging stint, with the former congressman.

Charge of the donkeys

The LA Times says it appears Democrats have a good shot at regaining control of a majority of governorships this year.

The Foley distraction

Jonathan Chait of the LA Times makes an important point -- there's a danger in letting the Foley scandal obscure the REALLY bad stuff about the Bush administration.

Running with the big dogs

Hogs crack AP's Top 20.  

Shine On You Crazy Diamonds: the Arkansas Freedom Of Information Act

Everyone has heard of the Freedom of Information Act, Ark. Code Ann. 25-19-102, but few realize how powerful it can be.

Whatever you do ...

Here's an e-mail from the Arkansas Republican Party that we agree with. Every vote counts.

Open line

Anybody have anything to say? Also, are others besides Cato have problems accessing our comment section?

Bill Walker's Interesting Campaign Stategery

Bill Walker's Interesting Campaign StrategeryWhile I certainly consider myself a progressive politically, some of my equally progressive friends take umbrage with my political positions.

The United States of Theocracy

Brummett laments House-passed legislation that would prevent attorney fee awards to people who sue over church-state violations.

Just in time for Christmas

Order The Huckster's presidental exploratory book. For a title, Gov. Mike Huckabee couldn't resist a Hope reference (even if his home county did go for the Democrat in his last electoral start).

Just in time for Christmas

Order The Huckster's presidental exploratory book. For a title, Gov. Mike Huckabee couldn't resist a Hope reference (even if his home county did go for the Democrat in his last electoral start).

Now, they figure it out

Better late than never for this Time cover, called to blog readers' attention originally by DBI.

In case you missed the point

Bush's disastrous bullyboy foreign policy is to blame for North Korea's nuclear test. Bush response here.

David Denby likes 'Little Children'

The latest film from Todd Field (In the Bedroom) receives an excellent review from the New Yorker's David Denby.  The film is out in New York and L.A. and should go to wide release on October 20th, if internet reports are accurate.Says Denby, Field works with such fluid grace and perception that the movie goes right to the top of the suburban-anguish genre.

Real New York movies

New York Magazine profiles the book Scenes From the City: Filmmaking in New York.

David Edelstein doesn't bbq 'Marie Antionette'

even though just about everyone else in Europe has.  The New York Magazine critic says,Much of the ridicule for Marie Antoinette at this year’s Cannes Film Festival was for its hodgepodge of acting styles and its alternation of period music and droning rock.

Letters from Iwo Jima

The complement film to Flags of Our Fathers also from Clint Eastwood that tells the WWII story from the Japanese perspective won't be released until 2007, making it ineligible for Oscar consideration this year.  Says the L.A. Times Tom O'Neil,Frankly, I think it's a dumb idea.

Latest from Terry George

the director of Hotel Rwands is Reservation Road starring Mark Ruffalo, Joaquin Phoenix, Jennifer Connelly, and Mira Sorvino.  According to Hollywood Reporter, "In the film, two families collide when the father of one kills the son of the other in a hit-and-run.

But is it legal?

Stephens Media: Sen. David Bisbee questions the constitutionality of UA-Fort Smith's conversion to a four-year institution.

Mission accomplished

Speaking of subjects more important than the Foley scandal: The death toll -- more than 2,700 -- is only part of the story of the U.S. military  in Iraq.

A lot of sauce, no meat

So says Halter campaign about Holt. Release on the jump.

My Theaterical Threats Become Real!

As I stated sometime in the past, I would be throwing in some musings and maulings of the local live entertainment scene, specifically theater, etc.  I'll leave the bands to those who are more informed than I... though the Oxford Amercian's 8th Music Issue is out this week and comes with a cd of rocking, off the beaten path musicians, check it if you want to hear some underground Southern Sounds.

J.R. and Henry's Sports Column: Being an SEC coach

J.R. and Henry: Pressure, criticism and opportunity come with the SEC head coaching job In the head coaching business, pressure comes with the territory.

Backing and filling

A$a and the AP. What was the song?

The sex police -- UPDATE

We are reading between Channel 11's very cautious lines, but it sounds like they are on vibrator/etc. patrol in Russellville.

Will it matter 28 days from now?

NY Times poll: Seventy-nine percent of respondents said House Republican leaders were more concerned about their political standing than about the safety of teenage Congressional pages.

UAMS finds statins extend life for elderly at risk of dying

In the largest study of its kind, J.L. Mehta, M.D., Ph.D., at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) has found that cholesterol-lowering drugs known as statins increased the life expectancy of elderly patients by an average of two years co

Huckabee for Beebe, not

The last time I spoke with presidential contender Mike Huckabee, I asked him to go ahead and give me the scoop that he actually favored Mike Beebe for governor.

Galways star in ASO’s ‘Masters’

Sir James Galway, one of the world’s great flutists, and his wife, Lady Jeanne Galway, will perform in the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra’s annual Masters concert on Thursday (Oct. 12), at Robinson Center Music Hall at 8 p.m.

Some questions for The Huckster -- UPDATED

Brummett wonders how in the world Gov. Mike Huckabee can campaign for A$a Hutchinson, in that A$a opposes so much of the worthwhile things Huckabee stood for.


A Northwest Arkansas correspondent got an extensive polling call last night, clearly targeting the governor's race and a raft of the issues developed by the major candidates.

The Majestic's fate

The D-G this morning followed up on a report by Arkansas Business that the closure of the Majestic Hotel in Hot Springs was in the offing.

To do Tuesday: Cryptic show

Ask anyone who's been, the annual "Tales of the Crypt" tour of Mount Holly Cemetery shouldn't be missed.

The green grass of Eureka

The LA Times gives feature attention today to the proposal on the ballot in Eureka Springs to give the lowest law enforcement priority to misdemeanor marijuana offenses.

Downtown doings

Speaking of condo conversions: We understand that the Little Rock Board of Directors today will put on the agenda for its Oct. 17 meeting an ordinance clearing the way for the delayed sale of the Metrocentre Improvement Districts's south parking deck to Charles Hendrix, who owns the Donaghey Building across Seventh Street from the deck.

Early reviews for 'Flags of Our Fathers'

Says Hollywood Reporter:Clint Eastwood's "Flags of Our Fathers" does a most difficult and brave thing and does it brilliantly.

Kennedys get on board 'Bobby'

so reports the L.A. Times,"The widow and daughter of Robert F. Kennedy have given their rare blessing.

Todd Field podcast

Here's a podcast with Little Children director Todd Field. 

What's in your queue?

I've got A Prairie Home Companion, Thank You for Smoking, and Art School Confidential.  You?

EW staffers confess to great films they just didn't get

CrashThe English PatientNapoleon DynamiteThe MatrixLost in TranslationThe Blair Witch ProjectThere's Something About MaryBrokeback MountainPulp FictionForrest Gumpare some of the films that make the list.  I'd put all of the LOTR films up there as well as Moulin Rouge, Chicago, Braveheart, Dances with Wolves, and The Wizard of Oz.

Get your TV on

AETN opens its debate season at 8 p.m. tonight with all three candidates for attorney general -- Democratic, Republican and Green.

Hollywood's best baseball players

EW has the story here.

Nail them worker bees, boys

Denny (Big'un) Hastert has vowed to fire everybody who covered up the Foley Fiasco.Providing, of course, the fire-ees are just mailroom employees or the like.Certainly not anybody who's a buddy of Big'un.

Jason Katzman says 'The Departed' deserves best pic

writing for MSNBC's 'For Your Consideration',An Oscar-winning best picture is a confluence of elements. It’s not just one thing.

ACLU goes to court

As promised, the ACLU has filed suit to overturn the Watson Chapel School District's suspension of students who wore black wristbands to school last week in protest of the district uniform policy.

No visible means of support

The Democratic Party raises an old, but good point. Hypocrite Jim Holt, the Republican candidate for lieutenant governor, has often called for prohibition of gifts by lobbyists to legislators.

Factcheckdotblog -- school busing

You've heard A$a's ads haven't you? "Can you imagine putting our children on a bus for over three hours a day?

Not funny

A hoax mailing to the governor's office. UPDATE: The Huckster, wherever he might be, issued a statement through his Girl Friday.

Going, going .... Dem

The Washington Post political blog continues to believe that Arkansas is almost certain to go Democratic for governor this year.

The Lake Maumelle plan

Tetra Tech's draft watershed management plan for Lake Maumelle is being mailed today. It's 122 pages.

David Pryor to undergo heart surgery

U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor's office just announced that his father, former U.S. Sen. and Arkansas Gov. David Pryor, was treated for chest pains at UAMS last night and will undergo open heart surgery tomorrow.

KARK to air gubernatorial debate (UPDATE)

An eagle-eyed Arkansas Blog reader noticed in an online TV listing that Little Rock NBC affiliate KARK will broadcast an "Arkansas Gubernatorial Debate" next Tuesday, Oct. 17 from 7-8 p.m.

We told you ...

... that Beebe would say whatever is required. Whether it be on gay people.

Bill Walker for mayor

The former state senator is Acorn's pick for mayor, along with Directors Genevieve Stewart and Johnnie Pugh for re-election and Ken Richardson to the board seat being vacated by Willie Hinton.

Gorilla in our midst

The Little Rock Zoo announces the birth today of a gorilla. News release on the jump.

School board runoff -- UPDATE

UPDATE: Dianne Curry waxed Tom Brock's butt in the runoff for Zone 7 on the LR School Board.

School board runoff -- UPDATE

UPDATE: Dianne Curry waxed Tom Brock's butt in the runoff for Zone 7 on the LR School Board.

UAMS breaks ground on major expansion

A groundbreaking ceremony for a 500,000-square-foot hospital expansion, located south of Ward Tower at the site where the old student dormitory was imploded in February.

A Mighty Heart

Angelina stars here as Mariane Pearl in the upcoming film A Mighty Heart directed by Michael Winterbottom.  The film is an adaptation of the book A Mighty Heart: The Brave Life and Death of My Husband Daniel Pearl.  Dan Futterman, who wrote the script for Capote, plays Daniel Pearl.  Brad Pitt's production company is producing the film.  The film is shooting in India, not in Pakistan where Daniel Pearl was killed.

Apologies again

The blog shut down again overnight and we just restarted about 8 a.m. I'll be catching up with the usual morning checks.

Big'un gets b * * * * -slapped

Denny (Big'un) Hastert might better start looking for a real job.Ann V. Clemmer, the reliably conservative UALR poly sci prof and occasional Arkansas Week participant, called for Hastert to resign in a commentary this morning on KUAR.

Three-way debate

Interesting contrast in Stephens Media and Democrat-Gazette coverage of the AETN debate for attorney general.

PS on Donaghey deal

We neglected yesterday to add some information we received after posting the item about City Board movement toward approving a downtown land deal at its meeting Oct. 17.

'The fat band boy'

Bill Clinton talks to the NY Times about his crusade for healthier children, his own current eating habits and even one of his early diet strategies.

Gen. Clark in legal squabble

NY Times blog reports that Wesley Clark is in a legal tangle with a former employee.


Here's a shock. A happy blog, Wal-Marting Across America, the tale of RVers traveling contentedly from Wal-Mart to Wal-Mart across America, is being subsidized by Wal-Mart.

Tennessean's view: Dracula easier to kill off than Houston Nutt

David Climer, the excellent sports columnist at The Tennessean in Nashville says that if he were stranded on a deserted island, he'd want to be with the ultimate survivor: Houston Nutt.

Searching for a photo

Anybody have a photo of Betty and Elton White, the odd couple troubadors who left LR for fame and fortune on the West Coast some years ago?

A wrinkle in the mayor's race

We understand that mayoral candidate Bill Walker will shortly announce that he has divested his interest in the catering contract at Little Rock National Airport.

'Keeping it family friendly'

Our headline is the one used by the UA in a news release reminding Hog fans that state law prohibits open containes of alcoholic beverages in public and the public consumption of alcohol.

I bet you didn't know

It's hard work running nuclear weapon's tests and starving his people, but North Korean whacko dictactor Kim Jong-Il is also a movie buff.  According to the L.A. Times, Reliable information is difficult to find when it comes to the secretive and eccentric dictator, but most experts agree on Kim's credentials as a movie buff.

Talking with Martin Scorsese

The Guardian has a great interview with Scorsese.  So writes Ed Pilkington, There's just one bit of unfinished business remaining.

Variety doesn't care for 'The History Boys'

"The History Boys" may please fans of the original legit production and the stragglers who didn't catch it in Gotham or London's West End.

Rolling Stone's Peter Travers digs 'Little Children'

This unnervingly funny and quietly devastating film -- director Todd Field's first since his smash 2001 debut with In the Bedroom -- pulls you in like a magnetic-force field. .

The hand of James Baker

It took him six years of tall talk, but, re N. Korea, Bush suddenly likes the idea of diplomacy.

Plane hits New York City high-rise

A small plane has crashed into a high-rise building on East 72nd Street in New York City.Two peoople are dead.

Here we go

With less than a month to go and trailing badly in all the polls, you knew A$a would eventually come home to the mother's milk of Republican politics -- whipping people into a frenzy about the imagined evils of gay people.

David Pryor doing well

UAMS is about to commence a news conference on former Sen. David Pryor's open-heart surgery today.

Revising my Top 20 to see

One of my first posts on this Blog was 20 films to see before year's end.  Now that the festival season has come and gone and reviews for almost every film except Dreamgirls are out, at least in the trades, here's a revised "Top 20 to see" (in no order after #1).1.  The Departed.  If you have not seen this film yet and you like films at all, go see it.2.  Dreamgirls.  A ton of buzz and no one's caught a glimpse.  That says something.3.  Flags of our Fathers.  It opens next weekend.  The trades loved it.  Clint Eastwood + Paul Haggis.4.  Little Children.  Kate Winslet shines according to everyone.  A.O. Scott wrote a beautiful review.5.  The Last King of Scotland.  Early buzz is that the Oscar is Forest Whitaker's for the taking.6.  Babel.  The guys behind Amores Perros and 21 Grams.  Stars Cate Blanchett and Brad Pitt.7.  The Prestige.  Latest from Momento & Batman Begins director Christopher Nolan.8.  The Good German.  Steven Soderberg + George Clooney.9.  The Good Shepard.  Robert DeNiro's directorial debut with Matt Damon and Angelina Jolie.10.  Volver.  Pedro Almodovar is back in the Oscar ring.

THE debate

The secretary of state's debate is tonight at 8 p.m. on AETN. You can get a sneak preview here.

I Talk About Football (Stop Laughing)

All right.  Well.  Seeing as how I was in a post-operative Codeine coma during the Arkansas/Auburn game last Saturday, I just today got a private, husband-hosted viewing of said game, especially the highlights, with replay-within-replay courtesy of Husband and TiVo, with many, many pauses, rewinds, and slo-mos.  Although I'd already known of the surprising outcome, my interest in the actual game had been piqued by an earlier reading today of Austin Murphy's account of it, "The Pigs Are Flying," in the just-delivered issue of Sports Illustrated.  SO--some bullet points (and I was just kidding in the title--you can go ahead and laugh; A football afficionada I am not):

Ground broken for hospital expansion

University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) officials, employees and supporters today heralded a new era in Arkansas health care with a groundbreaking ceremony for a 500,000-square-foot hospital expansion.