St. Matthews Is Now The Land Of Torture

What are you doing now that Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom is closed? [WHAS11]

If you haven’t had a chance to check out Phoenix Lindsey-Hall’s latest show at the Tim Faulker Gallery, you should do so. Deep look at foreclosure. [LEO Weekly]

Joe Arnold caught up with Rand Paul in a Clear Channel hallway to discuss that mean old librul, Jack Conway. [WHAS11]

Louisville’s 4th of July celebration was pretty calm. Unlike the racist invasion in Lexington. [Page One]

The Mom Jeans have returned. Be afraid. Very afraid. [The Wil Show]

Everybody’s emailing us about shock probation in this Bullitt County DUI case. [WAVE3]

Parking rates have jumped from $6 to $8 at the Fairgrounds to make up for lost revenue. Which makes tons of sense right before the State Fair kicks off during this time of recession. [FOX41]

Woah – torture in St. Matthews? Over $200,000 in drug money. Guess you never know what your neighbors are up to. [WLKY]

Tuesday Morning Dept of Jane Beshear Leads

Get thee to Frankfort tomorrow to rally for equality. It’s maybe your final chance to scare the bejeebers out of Gary Tapp. [Page One]

One of the many reasons I like First Lady Jane Beshear, even if I dislike her husband for the most part: She’ll be speaking at the Kentucky Association of Food Banks press conference this morning at 10:00 A.M. Hunger in Kentucky 2010. Capitol Rotunda. So please show up to photograph her, get fancy teevee footage and write about her, you newsie people. [Press Release]

I hope Ambassador Barzun (and Scott Ritcher) read yesterday’s Toothpaste For Dinner. [TFD]

Actors Theatre is kicking off the 34th Annual Humana Festival of New American Plays. [WFPL & ATL Humana Fest]

The rally for higher education in Frankfort is today. Buses leave UofL by the Student Activities Center at 12:30 today. Be there by noon. [Press Release]

Ray LaHood says federal funding is likely for the Ohio River Bridges Project. [WAVE3]

Ambassador Matthew Barzun got asked some tough questions – some from a student from the Kentucky area. [The Leaf Chronicle]

It looks like the Grand Gala won’t be happening this year. [WHAS11]

If Six Flags owns the rides at Kentucky Kingdom, how is it legal for the state to try to keep them? [C-J]

Is Tyler Allen going to talk about ANYTHING other than transportation, ever? A quick glance of his Twitter profile suggests that he never will. I know two state legislators who would endorse him if he’d start talking about something else, start taking risks and get out there on something other than eighty-sixing sixty-four. [Twitter]

Tandy Capitalized On Six Flags Job Losses

On Friday, David Tandy stood with Republican Hal Heiner to call for the city and state to work with Six Flags to keep Kentucky Kingdom open.

That was honorable.

Then 4:00 P.M. hit and we got an email from Tandy’s campaign:

“Kentucky Kingdom is the largest employer of young people in the Commonwealth, they provide the opportunity to earn an income and acquire job skills to more than 1000 Louisville youths each year.” David said during a press conference today. “We must do whatever we can to protect those jobs and to ensure the 2nd largest tourist attraction in Kentucky continues to operate.”

David has pledged to work with both parties and to work with state officials to find a solution which will allow the park to continue to operate and ensure that those employment opportunities remain.

This is the type of leadership we’ve come to expect from David.  He has spent his career putting principle ahead of politics—statesmanship ahead of gamesmanship.

Please do your part to help ensure that we elect a leader like David as our next mayor.  You can join the fight today by donating $25, $50, $100, or more.

That’s right – using a tragic loss of jobs to beg for campaign cash.


In fairness, I don’t think David Tandy would approve this message. It clearly came from his campaign staff. I routinely criticize Tandy for appearing spineless and flip-flopping, but there remains no doubt in my mind that he could be a solid and inspiring leader if he’d just step up to the plate. Unfortunately, hiccups like this email blast don’t help in the least.

Kentucky Kingdom Meltdown Has Begun

Okay, okay. I get it. Everybody and their mother is freaking out over Kentucky Kingdom. Especially mayoral candidates.

Shannon White:

“As a past seasonal employee of Kentucky Kingdom, and manager of the Games Department for two years, I know the vital importance of these jobs for our economy. I encourage The Kentucky State Fair Board and Kentucky Kingdom to get to the negotiation table and compromise to avoid losing crucial employment opportunities in Louisville.”

David Tandy & Hal Heiner:

In a bi-partisan effort Councilman David Tandy and Councilman Hal Heiner have joined together today to call on Six Flags and the Fair Board to come back to the table for re-negotiations.  Councilman Heiner and Councilman Tandy are offering to work with their council colleagues to keep one of Louisville’s top tourist attractions here in the Metro.  Councilman Tandy stated, “Six Flags is a valuable employment center for seasonal workers and a national attraction for tourism that Louisville must support.”

The Councilmen plan to meet with the Louisville Jefferson County Legislative Delegation, State Fair Board and Six Flags to stress the importance of coming to an agreement for the good of the Commonwealth, Louisville and Six Flags.  “The stakes are too high for us to sit idly by while Louisville watches yet another employer leave town”, said Councilman Heiner.

Councilmen Tandy and Heiner will hold a joint press conference today at 2:00 PM at the Six Flags main gate.

And some inappropriate commentary from me:

It is hilarious for me to watch Doug Proffitt read news about Kentucky Kingdom on-air:

This situation may be terrible for Louisville, but the only thing going through my head last night as Proffitt spoke was schadenfreude. Cause you just know he is clenched up like woah and about to, you know… pop a vein as the text scrolls on the prompter.

Oh, and P.S.: folks in the governor’s office tell me this does not come as a surprise. And folks at Six Flags say they’ve been making it clear for weeks that this would occur if the fair board wasn’t willing to negotiate.

Friday Morning Dept of Loving/Hating Frankfort

These heathen legislators should be ashamed! Trying to force sex ed on our unassuming children. What’s next, marrying our pets? [Joe Gerth]

The Jefferson County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner will be held on February 19. [Press Release]

Six Flags is closing Kentucky Kingdom. This isn’t exactly, you know, great news for the city. [C-J]

Why are so many men in love with ’57 Chevys? And what should you do on Valentine’s Day? Fairdale Bigfoot has the answers. And he’s still running for mayor. [Consuming Louisville]

Wealthy UofL president Jim Ramsey is leading the fight against the state legislature. Ramsey thinks it’s great to force all students to buy into a $350 meal plan – even if they have no way to use the plan. All to pay for a contract that was signed without regard to, you know, the reality of our economic situation. [Nancy Rodriguez]

Scott Ritcher’s monorail plan from 1998 was pretty spiff. Too bad Denise Harper Angel had to drag him through the mud during the last campaign because she was offended that someone is smarter than her. [Broken Sidewalk]

If you haven’t read this story about Jack Ditty secretly videotaping Robin Webb, get on it right away. It’s the most hilarious story this week. [Page One]

And this is what passes for representation in Frankfort these days. Crazy old men going crazy on CNN. [More Page One]

A UofL news release says that people who keep guns at home are much more likely to hurt or kill themselves or a loved one than to stop an intruder. [Click the Clicky]

Page One & The ‘Ville Voice on TeeVee

This week we discuss Jason Stinson (no mention of his ridiculous religious statements), stupid rumors about Heather French Henry and the mayoral race (for the record, we did not hear from reliable source that she’s considering this race, not sure why that was said on television), something about Kentucky Kingdom and a roller coaster, yadda yadda, check it out.

It’s a shame Fox 41 felt the need to over-hype this stupid Heather French Henry rumor. How is a non-credible rumor – which we publicly attacked for being pure hilarity – more important than the Stinson case or any number of issues? Come on, Fox, let’s get real and quit it with the hype when it comes to doing the news. It’s not cool to do just because it’s “sexy” to discuss someone who used to work for you.

Still think they should hire Dan Spangler.

Monday’s Department of Duh

Happy Monday! The V.V. is off to parent orientation at the University of Louisville this morning, so things may be a little slow here. But there’s plenty to talk about, like this stuff…

Didn’t We Already Tell You Cash Knew About the Secret Meeting?: So it was a little surprising to see the story lead the C-J’s front page on Sunday. We did learn, though, that Jerry Abramson upbraided Charles Cash and made him promise not to hold a secret meeting ever again. Unless Ali Ahmadi is subpoena’d, the neighborhood association’s Stephen Porter says his group will likely file a lawsuit. The hearing on the issue starts at 8:30. [Courier]

Funny Fishy Thingie:  It is kind of a Dixie Highway landmark, but it’s still funny that Norman Pepper’s big ole fish at his bait store is briefly featured in this video we showed you last week from the Possibility City people. See, the city’s IPL department’s been fighting the fish for 2 1/2 years, claiming it violates the city’s sign statute. It comes at 4:10 into the video. [Springston]

Special Session is On: It starts today, and will deal with the all-important slots legislation. We have our doubts about its passage, but some people who should know told us it got some good news Friday. Either way, the best place to follow the action is over at Page One.

This Timing is No Accident: Jack Conway will announce this morning his opinion on video lottery terminals at Kentucky racetracks.

Will the Metro Animal Services Scandal Rise to Become Like the “Housing Investigation”? That’s what Kelly Downard compared the alleged financial mismanagement at the dog pound to during Budget Hearings last week. Here’s some history on Dr. Meloche. [Examiner]

Friday’s Flyover Fest: What big names were seen at the screening of the delightful “Bart Got a Room” Friday night? Jonathan Miller, John Y. Brown III, William Mapother, Francene and everybody in the local film biz. The film is coming out on video later this month. Get it.

How to Handle P.R. When You’re Worried That the Public Will Cancel Plans to Visit Your Amusement Parks Because You Declared Bankruptcy: The Six Flags folks really want you to know that they are still in the thrill business. [Six Flags]

Getting Hosed: The C-J also has details of the squabble between Breslin Park pool supporters and the city, a story we detailed for you Friday. The park supporters don’t want the sprayground city leaders want to give them, and may send the Mayor a garden hose today to show what they think of the idea. [Courier]

Middle of the Day Musings on Mountains, Etc.

The Real Change We Meant: According to a NY Times editorial, President Obama can stop, or at least slow down, the efforts of mining companies trying to practice mountaintop mining. All he has to do is order the Corps of Engineers to stop issuing permits. [NY Times]

Status Quo at Six Flags: In an earnings call this morning, Six Flags CEO Mark Shapiro insisted that guests will see only improvements in operations at the parks, including Kentucky Kingdom. He calls those pesky financial questions “back of the house” issues that involve creditors. And they need a really good year. [Six Flags]

Some Good Economic News: A high-tech Fortune 500 company is opening a new facility on Strawberry Lane.  The Mayor and the Governor are swooping in to take credit at a celebration on Wednesday.  The company, ACS, provides IT support for the trucking and travel industry. [ACS]

Showing Up is All It Takes: The C-J’s special investigation finds that police officers who don’t show up for court cases don’t get disciplined, and it often results in bad guys going free. It was a five-month investigation, exposing lax policies in the police department. [Courier]

Set for a Wild Ride at Six Flags

In Friday’s New York Times, an article about the financial problems facing the Six Flags theme park company discussed the company’s attempts to avoid a Chapter 11 bankruptcy. It mentioned some complicated financial information detailing the company’s $300 million debt payment coming due.

For parks like Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom, the story presents a new challenge — convincing customers to visit the park as if everything’s A-OK. The story’s opening sentence sumarizes the worrisome part: “Will parents let their children ride a roller coaster owned by a bankrupt company?

In Louisville, park spokesperson Carolyn McLean says the Six Flags financial restructuring will have no effect on the local park — it has hired 1,000 summer workers, added a concert series and it is all set to open April 25. They’re even bringing back that annoying mascot, Mr. Six.

But unlike most years, the park hasn’t added a real new attraction this year. Families aren’t spending money the way they used to. One analyst predicts a national 3.5 percent decline in attendance for 2009, and that’s IF the company doesn’t have the taint of a bankruptcy filing.

Let’s be optimistic, though. Who else has hired 1,000 workers for the summer? Six Flags enters the season with a $200 million operating budget for its 20 parks. It ought to be an interesting ride.

The company is holding a conference call this morning, so there may be further news. We’ll keep you posted.