We Need More Scandals Edition

Still Pissed: Fox41’s Bill Lamb is still pissed at the federal government about having to keep his analog signal on through June. But Bill, you could have shown some guts and gone forward without the other stations. [Fox41]

Look, More People to Blame: Are you starting to get the feeling that the courts are going to eventually make Max Gilpin’s parents rich? After reviewing more evidence, they’re adding the principal, athletic director and an assistant coach at PRP to their civil lawsuit. And Sheldon Berman is standing by principal David Johnson and criticizing the newspaper. [C-J]

Give Me a Home: The homeless problem is getting worse, and a lot of people are moving in with relatives. And it doesn’t help that the Metro government can’t administer federal grants. [C-J]

Speaking of Homeless, Jerry Takes a Meeting: After representative of several homeless groups held a press conference yesterday saying, no, they weren’t surprised at all the mismanagement allegations in the state auditor’s report, Jerry Abramson set up a meeting with them for next week. The groups indicated that they’ve been silent about the problems for years out of fear that speaking out would endanger their grant money. [WAVE]

Casinos Still in Power in Indiana: Give them credit for trying, but Indiana lawmakers lacked the courage to pass a strong statewide smoking ban, instead providing an exemption for casinos and bars.  The bill that passed the Hoosier House requires places like Horseshoe to make 20 percent of its space non-smoking.  That place, by the way, really stinks. Smokers can have it. Now the bill’s up to the Senate. [IndyStar]

Let the Spending Begin: But none of that stimulus money will go toward building bridges. $52 million is going to Jefferson County Public Schools, and Sheldon Berman says that means he won’t have to layoff so many workers. [WHAS, C-J]

Return to Appalachia: That Diane Sawyer special on eastern Kentucky pulled some huge ratings, and the producers are back in the hills to produce a follow-up that will air Friday night at 10. It got the biggest audience for a 20/20 episode since 2004. [Herald-Leader]

Ashley on Tape: Watch Ashley Judd’s speech in Frankfort yesterday, thanks to the H-L, and read Billy Reed’s love letter to her. [Herald-Leader, BillyReedSays]

Heard on the Homo Mafia Gayvine: There’s some hanky panky going on at the Kentucky Equality Federation, and Jack Conway’s crew has sniffed it out. [Page One]

Good Guys Do Bad Things and Should Be Punished

This morning, the C-J editorial board is calling for action from JCPS superintendent Sheldon Berman, who should have fired both PRP football coach David Stinson and principal David Johnson long ago.

We didn’t learn until Johnson’s deposition was released yesterday the extent of his incompetence in the matter. Loyalty to a wrongfully-charged employee is one thing, but participating in protecting him is quite another.

It’s also now clear from Johnson’s statements that rather than investigating and considering the possibility that Stinson may have done something wrong at the Aug. 20 practice, he took action to prevent negative comments about Stinson from other investigators.

From the C-J editorial, we learn that Johnson told a PRP resident that Stinson was hired because of “his strong Christian beliefs.” And that Johnson kept no records, no notes, destroyed incriminating e-mails and lied about the depth of his investigation.

A few weeks back, every local TV station covered the heart-wrenching protests organized by school supporters and church groups. The polishing of Stinson’s image included many references to his faith and how much everyone liked him. The idea seemed to be to present him to the public as some kind of sympathetic figure wrongly accused. Hundreds flocked to the protests and joined online support groups.

He may be a decent guy, but he also may have run Max Gilpin to his grave.

Johnson won’t get the same treatment, and he’s not charged with a crime. Probably a great guy, too. But let’s not forget that he’s got his own troubles, and that when good guys make bad decisions it should cost them their jobs.

Stinson’s Zipped Lip

Former PRP football coach Jason Stinson showed up for his deposition in the civil case against him this morning, and promptly refused to say anything. His attorney cited his ongoing criminal case, in which Stinson is charged with reckless homicide, as reason for his silence in the civil matter, brought by the late Max Gilpin’s parents.

On the stand, Stinson exercised his rights and refused to answer questions, including the one the prosecution most wanted to ask — Did he deny players water and make players run until someone quit?

We may never know, but it’s going to take a criminal trial before Stinson speaks and the facts come out.

Meanwhile, Stinson is going to work every day for JCPS in a non-teaching role. And this week Rep. Joni Jenkins introduced a bill in Frankfort calling for defibrillators to be present at high school practices along with a pool of ice in hot weather.

Publicity about Stinson’s case SHOULD be enough, however, to keep such an incident like this from happening again. Running sprints until players drop just isn’t OK. No one disputes that Stinson (as evidenced by the rallies of support in PRP) is a decent human being or that he was not intentionally causing Gilpin’s death. But we’re also pretty sure that his coaching techniques helped cause this young man’s death.

The other piece of news in the case is that a judge wants to see the results of the Jefferson County Schools’ investigation, and demanded that JCPS attorney explain why they won’t turn the good over next week.

Here’s links to coverage by WLKY-TV and the Courier.

Kentucky Lawyers Need More Space, and Sense

Get this. Gov. Steve Beshear’s legal team, still flailing away in a nationally embarrassing case in which it is trying to rid the state of online poker, has asked the state’s Supreme Court to allow it 30 additional pages beyond the prescribed limit of 50 to explain its case against owners of gambling domains.

Somebody please add up the legal bill for Beshear’s stupid quest and take it out of his paycheck.

The Kentucky lawyers, always working a backup plan to extend the case and get paid longer, ask in their request for 10 additional days to edit their document if (they must know this is going to happen) the Kentucky Supreme Court rejects their request.

At least the opposition is getting some laughs out of the case. Joe Brennan, chairman of IMEGA (Interactive Media and Gaming Association), said this:

“So far, their argument has boiled down to ‘a domain is a gambling device and these are very bad people who have no right to be represented in court.’ How many more pages do they need to say that?”

The sooner Beshear and his crew give up on this futile chase (one that his own Attorney General refuses to join), the sooner they can get back to some more significant issues.

Wednesday Afternoon Update In Rick’s Absence

Rick is still experiencing connectivity issues with the site, so I’m sharing some links he just passed along.

Does Mo Know Kentucky? One of the funniest guys on the planet, Mo Rocca, will be in Frankfort today for a press conference hosted by the Kentucky Historical Society. We’re hoping he’s got some new “make fun of Kentucky” jokes, or that he’ll mention us on his blog, where of course he’s preoccupied with American Idol. [Mo Rocca’s Blog]

AA Skirts the Open Records Law: We all knew there was some hanky panky going on with the way the Arena was picking contractors last fall, prompting the filing of a lawsuit by RAM Engineering. Now Jack Conway says the smart guys at the AA were conspiring to “subvert the intent” of the open records law by denying RAM access to records. It’ll cost them. [C-J]

Turfway’s Big Plans: If only the legislature passes Greg Stumbo’s video slots bill, Turfway Park will spend $150 million on a destination casino, even though there would be no table games. And, by the way, it’s not going to happen. [Enquirer]

Lexington’s Scandal: That Lexington airport scandal just keeps growing. After it was revealed they charged Hannah Montana tickets to their company credit cards, three top managers resigned. New blood is on board. I’m experiencing scandal-envy. [Herald-Leader]

Not Like a Virgin, A Real Virgin: This 23-year-old woman in San Diego is auctioning off her virginity. To pay for a masters degree. And she’s got a $3.7 million offer for a one-night stand. Start of a trend? [UK Telegraph]

Rep. John Yarmuth played a major role in the re-authorization of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program. Go read his floor speech in support of the expanded legislation. [Page One]

Page One & ‘Ville Voice Scandalizing The TeeVee – With an Update on the Felner-UofL Story

Did you notice the elephant in the room during Rick’s appearance this morning on the CW? When Rick arrived at the studio, Dan Spangler told him the Robert Felner-UofL story was too hot for the morning show to handle. The station’s general manager, Carol LaFever, said the morning show wasn’t the place for such hard news. She mentioned a rumor she’d heard that the attorney involved was upset with Page One’s coverage. So we asked her for a statement, and here’s what she said:

“Baldly put, this story is fascinating and lurid and terrible all at the same time – it deserves investigation and it’s getting that, in part thanks to you guys – but our show is a format for you to tell people about what you are doing, not to disseminate the story – I have some discomfort about what we might have heard this morning, as some of it lives in the realm of speculation – at least until the story rolls out further. I will continue to be a daily visitor to your website to see how it develops.”

If that’s not an indication that the story has become a monster, we’re not sure what is.

For the record: we spoke with journalists, news directors and managers from WLKY, WHAS, WDRB/Fox41 and the Courier-Journal and confirmed that Felner’s attorney has not attempted to silence coverage of this story.

So watch us be all scandalous on the teevee. Again. And every week.

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