by Max Brantley
The heavy lifting of the legislative session near done, the mischief can begin. Such as the bill to impose whopper fines for porn merchants.
I was sad to read this morning that Gov. Beebe has thrown in with the liquor and wine merchants (Beebe throw in with the business lobby? Pinch me, I must be dreaming.) and it means Arkansas likely will stay in the dark ages on wine and spirits purchases, cut off from the wider, cheaper, better choices available in other more enlightened states. There's scant evidence that mail order purchases are more prone to exploitation by minors than the time-honored ritual of paying a wino a buck to make your purchases or, in college, having any of many legal purchasers pick up the kegs for the brothers. No, this is protectionism pure and simple. Don't be confused. Or surprised.
Payday lenders have purchased the Senate.
A NW Ark. Republican has introduced one of those awful bills requiring production of a photo ID to vote. We should be encouraging more voting, not throwing up roadblocks to voting and suppressing votes. We should have postcard voting, truth be told.
These are but a few of the silly things floating around, though I'm encouraged that The Otherhood in the Senate has coalesced, as we predicted early in the session, to block appropriations for local pork until major state needs are met. We saw this doughty dozen in
Doe's the day The Brotherhood took over the Senate and there was little doubt this day of reckoning would arrive. Call the roll!