Mandy Connell Leaves Louisville And, Well…

Here’s some of her goodbye message as she departs for Denver:

For me, this experience defies explanation in the best possible way. The people of Louisville are simply the best. The. Best. Warmest, kindest, most open and caring community I’ve ever seen. I tell my friends who are incredulous that I live in Kentucky that Louisville is the most surprising city I’ve ever been in. So much to do, so many amazing restaurants, a strong sense of community, and caring and generosity of both spirit and funds. Being a part of the Crusade for Children has been wonderful. That very special event is and will always remain unique to Louisville, because Louisville doesn’t forget it’s past. I met someone when I was new to the area who had moved away after college and moved back years later, and he told me once you live here, you want to come back. It’s as if Louisville sings the song of a siren that follows you when you leave and pulls you back…happily.

I didn’t quite get it then, but I get it now.


Someone else will be hired to do this job. Please be kind and give them a chance! I would remind many of you that when I arrived, many were not happy. I was not Francene, would never be Francene, and you were not happy. I have the emails to prove this, lest you be in denial. But it worked out. You got used to me. I settled in. So I ask you to give the next host a chance. You will get used to them. They will settle in. You may even like them better! Seriously, it could happen. I hope it does, because I love this audience that much!

She’s right. Many of us didn’t like her when she got here, though we gave her several chances. And many of us are glad she’s leaving.

Why? Let’s take a stroll down racist lady memory lane:

As you can see, we welcomed her initially. We defended her for a while. Then she continued to step in the crazy, the hateful, the ridiculous. The worst? She embraced racism, embraced her own anti-semitic comments (and continued to attack John Yarmuth after the whole snafu), played the victim all along.

We knew you were a hot mess when you first told the story about how you were defending your friend, Mark Foley, as he was admitting to that congressional page incident. Don’t let the door hit you on your purposefully ignorant, racist-baiting, anti-semitic ass, Mandy.

It’s Been A Year: Remembering Lovely Francene

Seems like it was yesterday that Francene Cucinello was boasting of a prominent Democrat asking her to consider a bid for elected office. Seems like it was yesterday that we were having coffee while gossiping about Jack Conway’s bear arms. Seems like it was yesterday she was working with us to uncover the Robert Felner scandal. Seems like it was yesterday she was changing Louisville and Kentucky for the better with her glaring voice of reason and intoxicating personality.

January 15 marks the anniversary of her untimely death. Can’t believe it’s been a year since her passing. A year since her earth-shattering memorial service. A year since the State House and Senate adjourned in her honor.

Francene’s one of the few people in this community who worked hard to keep elected officials honest, the press legitimate and life good for those who needed her.

Hope you’ll help me honor her by remembering that being oneself is important. In politics. In media. In everyday life.

I miss her.

Remembering The Big Stories From The Past Year

2010’s been a crazy year here at The ‘Ville Voice & Page One. Thought it’d be a good idea to take a look back at the most-read stories of from the past 12 months.

  • Dear John Boel: Please Let Us Get You Help & John Boel Is Finally Out At WLKY [November 8 & November 10]
  • John Belski Out At WAVE3, Too [August 18]
  • Real Story Behind The Mint Jubilee Mess [February 17]
  • Bobby Jack Gone from WAMZ Radio [October 2]
  • UofL: Land Of The Appearance Of Impropriety [October 25]
  • My Beloved Francene Cucinello [January 15]
  • Local TeeVee News People Rumor Fun [March 19]
  • The Entire Metro Government Audit Is Here [March 24]
  • Garson & Ivory Sink To Nasty New Low [October 28]
  • Dan Spangler Sues Station for Discrimination [January 21]

An honorable mention for what sparked a year of begging from local shoppers: ear X-tacy Faces Closure, Owner Speaks Out [February 9]

Thank you for sticking with us for so long – particularly to those who disagree with us most but still continue to read and contribute. I (Jake) don’t get too personal here on a regular basis, but… much love to you.

Hope you and yours have a happy new year!

Election Day Can’t Come Quickly Enough, Right?

Rand Paul leads Jack Conway 53 to 40 in the latest data from Public Policy Polling in the U.S. Senate race. [Page One

This is tough for me to discuss, so I’m merely linking to it. The family of Francene Cucinello filed a wrongful death suit against Norton Hospital. [FatLip]

Wonder when the Gannett beast will take responsibility for its reporter outing a confidential source? I haven’t heard a peep. Maybe they’re waiting to hop on here to call me a liar again so I can post screenshots proving them wrong again? Or maybe they’ve gotta focus all their attention on keeping the Chris Otts/GLI/Abramson story from seeing the light of day? [Failures In Journalism]

Jeff Donahue was removed from the ballot because he’s not qualified. The Democratic Party should have removed him when it had the chance. Say hell to Rep. Wade Hurt. Oh, and Wade: It’s Democratic Party, not Democrat Party. [Deep Dem Failure]

Jack Conway’s office referred the Greg Fischer case to the Kentucky State Police for investigation. There’s evidence in the Fischer case, but none in the Heiner allegations. KSP will get to the bottom of it. [FatLip & WFPL]

The Sierra Club has endorsed John Yarmuth, Marty Meyer, Jim Wayne and fraud/soon-to-be-mayor Greg Fischer. [Sierra Club]

Was gonna write a story about how Greg Fischer didn’t answer any of these survey questions, but Jonathan Meador already did. [More FatLip]

Why is Greg Fischer hiding a traffic accident that resulted in his car being totaled? [Curt Morrison]

Rachel Platt is continuing the lie that Greg Fischer invented an ice and beverage machine. As we all know, that’s not true. Rachel knew it wasn’t true and WHAS aired it anyway. [WHAS11]

Right-Wing Bigots Tarnish Francene’s Good Name

Brad Montell and Stan Lee are absolutely disgusting human beings.

These two idiots – with the aid of bigot Frank Simon – have created HB583, a charter schools bill that they have dubbed… wait for it… The Francene Cucunillo (sic) Act.

AN ACT relating to charter schools.

Create new sections of KRS Chapter 160 to describe the intent of the General Assembly and the purposes of authorizing charter schools; define terms; outline the requirements and limitations on the establishment of charter school including authorizers to be local boards of education, boards of trustees of state research universities, or boards of regents of state comprehensive universities; describe authorizer’s roles and responsibilities; describe exemptions from law and required compliance areas for charter schools; and describe the application, approval, and renewal processes for charter schools; describe application process for existing schools to convert to charter schools; require state, federal, and local funds to be distributed to a charter school using formulas and allocation processes used in any other school; and provide that the Act shall be know as “The Francene Cucunillo Act”.

Seriously. They’re that fucking sickening. They’ve taken someone who detested them all (especially Simon and Lee) and used her recently deceased name in vain.

They couldn’t even spell her name correctly. It’s Cucinello.

But what’s most disgusting? Frank Simon is promoting this mess in his latest email blast:

Call the Senate leadership first, and ask them to put HB 583 “The Francene Act”, on any education related bill, as an amendment.  Then call the House leadership and make the same request.

The time is now.
Please forward this to all of your friends in Kentucky.
Frank G Simon, MD, Director
American Family Association of Kentucky

Sickening. Montell, Lee, Simon. All three despicable people who have no shame.

Taking advantage of Francene is hardly a smart move. For these folks to do so should show the general public just how sick they are.

Just Who Is This Fancy New WHAS Radio Lady?

There’s plenty of, to be honest, panic in media circles this week over the announcement of Mandy Connell’s new role at 84WHAS. Connell, a longtime morning show host in Florida, will be taking the helm of our beloved Francene Cucinello’s old home on the radio.

While definitely conservative (she describes herself as “recovering dirty-foot-hippie-liberal”), I’m not quite sure why everybody is freaking out over her new role.

Here’s why: More than 130 applications were reviewed and dozens of talented radio honchos were interviewed for the job. She’s been at this thing for 14 years. She’s a quick study, if you listen to any of her archived programming, and is no stranger to dealing with government buttcramps and people like me with egos the size of Red China. And it doesn’t hurt that she’s got a heart.

According to WHAS Operations Manager Kelly Carls, “Mandy really stood out for her energy, enthusiasm and dedication to giving listeners an interesting, informative and engaging radio program. We believe she will really connect with the 84WHAS audience.” Which is precisely how she should be judged– by how she’s able to connect with her entire audience, not just the right-wing. And we’ve gotta stop comparing her to Francene. Because that’s setting the bar just a little too high, to say the least.

Here’s what Connell had to say about her new job, “To say that I am excited is a massive understatement. Not only do I get to join a heritage radio station like 84WHAS, I get to live in Louisville, which has more amazing restaurants than I dreamed possible. I couldn’t ask for a better new home! I can’t wait to dig in, metaphorically and literally.” Little does she know, she’ll have to REALLY dig in the next time there’s an ice storm, otherwise she’s likely to be trapped in her home for seven or eight months.

So, if I can give her a chance to show her true colors and talent, why can’t the rest of you? Let’s give her a break.

Now for the interesting and unprofessional stuff: I zoomed in on her high-res headshot and it appears that she is a fan of the gays (good mark)… because a gay clearly did her makeup.

She loves our dumbest president in history, Dubya, and his brother, Jeb:

And like I mentioned above, she’s got a good heart. She and her husband founded Cigars for Soldiers, an organization that gives back to our military personnel. Aside from the auto-playing music on the charity’s website that caused me indigestion, the organization has done a lot of good by needed relief and comfort to thousands of soliders– and not just by giving them cigars.

Unlike some unethical “journalists” (including those who think no one else knows they’re on the take) who are quick to attack, I’m not tossing her to the wolves just yet. Let’s see how she handles the job before we start throwing stones. There will be plenty of time for that in a few months.

Friday Morning Dept Of Some Things Are Just Bad

A couple of Greg Fischer’s campaign staffers spent most of yesterday telling everybody from PRP to Frankfort that Jim King was dropping out of the mayoral race because of his son’s health condition. Wonder how ridiculous they feel now that the entirety of the press know that’s not the case and that JCTA endorsed him? That’s a naaaasty trick, Greg, and I hope you realize what your staffers are doing. A couple members of the press can back me up on this one, too. [Just Saying]

I love it when a certain “journalist” refuses to link to me when I’m the only person with a particular story. Guess he’s treading water in fear that I’ll out him for something highly unethical. Interesting times, these days. [Deep, Hilarious Thoughts]

Mandy Connell was hired to take Francene’s old time slot at 84WHAS radio. [C-J & WHAS11]

Solutions to Louisville’s affording housing problem seem to be non-existent. And it doesn’t help that there’s only one mayoral candidate who really has the guts to talk about the problem in-depth. [Jonathan Meador]

Chick Inn on River Road has closed because of a rent increase of 40%. [C-J]

The Ice House Loft plans have been refined, so check them out.Though,  Ice Box Co-Labs isn’t Louisville’s first co-working environment. There have been a few, including one that was once above Jennica’s on East Market. (Doesn’t change the fact that this co-working joint is cool for this city.) [Broken Sidewalk]

Fairdale Bigfoot made us gag a little this week. Thank goodness he’s around to tell perverts how it is. [Consuming Louisville]

Dear Louisville Forum: Charging $25 to attend a mayoral debate/forum defeats the purpose entirely. [Business First]

A landmark Rubbertown study was was unveiled… and ignored. [FatLip]

A bazillion jobs are under mayoral control and the next mayor gets to appoint the folks who run the show. I.E., Greg Fischer will be appointing people close to Larry Clark and others that are already part of the problem in Louisville. [WFPL]

New 84WHAS Mid-Day Host Coming

The name of the person taking over as host of the mid-day show (Francene’s 9AM – Noon spot) on 84WHAS will be announced today at 3:00 P.M.

And that strongly opinionated and interesting character (with quite the background) will be the focus of an interview with Terry Meiners at 4:10 P.M. today.

So be sure to tune in to 840AM and at 3:00 & 4:10 this afternoon.

While no one will ever be able to fill Francene’s shoes (I’m obviously biased), I am pretty excited to hear the news.

We’re Not The Only City With Education Corruption

Remember Robert Felner’s partner in crime, Thomas Schroeder? He gets to keep his position as president of a school board. Despite a federal indictment. Despite a clear cut role in, you know, defrauding schools. Good job, Riverdale, Illinois. [Quad-City Times]

The stalled Legacy Lofts project is about to see new life in downtown. Check out the photos and read all about it. The hideous color scheme is out (taupe, though? ugh), thankfully. All gays and people of taste rejoice! It’s just too bad no normal folks will be able to afford any of the units. [Broken Sidewalk]

Really? This is news in the U.S. Senate race? [WHAS11]

Hey, lawyer-types, read up on this crazy story of a law firm and medical clinic allegedly trading clientele. [Andy Wolfson]

St. Louis-based Paul Harris will be on the air this week filling the spot once held by Francene at 84WHAS. Every morning I wake up hoping to hear that Joe Elliott has been given that midday slot. But Harris is a great host. [Paul Harris]

$1.75 million. That’s what the city plans to spend on the planning and design of a southwest library. [C-J]

Some people think Jim Bunning should be locked away in a home. Some people think he’s a genius for starving Kentuckians to death. What do you think? [FatLip]

Greg Stumbo was for higher education budget cuts before he was against them, or something? The amount of flip-flopping and all-around mess this legislative session is tough to keep track of. [H-L]

Louisville takes the top two spots in AmericanStyle’s best art fairs list. Kentucky Crafted, The Market and St. James Court Art Show. [WFPL]

It’s Wednesday & Some People Have No Decency

In case you missed it: Democrat Larry Clark snubbed Francene Cucinello after her passing. [Page One]

According to a release from Congressman John Yarmuth’s office, President Barack Obama is expected to announce an increase in dependent care tax credits for the middle class in his State of the Union address this evening. Yarmuth proposed the legislation last year to up the credit amount from $5,000 to $7,500. [Press Release]

Yesterday U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced $474,486 in Recovery Act funds for the Transit Authority of River City in Louisville. [Press Release]

Personal geekery moment: University of Louisville faculty and staff will gather to watch the premier of LOST on February 2 – along with their guests – on a ten-foot screen. Free, 7:30 P.M., Miller Information Technology Center. Guests are asked to arrive dressed as a character from the show. [UofL]

Some East End Republicans are apparently partaking in revisionist history? Trying to say Greg Fischer isn’t a candidate of big business. Hahaha. [Heffalumps]

Jim Green to run against Katie King? I’m hearing stories about him that are worse than the ones we all heard from Ed Springston in 2008. Think it’s gonna turn into a mess? [SoS]

A million thousand people are running for mayor. [WFPL]

State Rep. David Osborne thinks it should be illegal to ride bicycles with children. And he’s filed legislation to prevent it. What the heck kind of waste is that? [Broken Sidewalk]

Maybe the Archdiocese of Louisville should stick to cleaning its own house before going after those who need help the most. Nobody wants to rehash the perverted priest nightmare. [Peter Smith]