by Max Brantley
The line is open. Jon Stewart's take above on "The Million Mouth March" is worth a watch, an even-handed depiction of excesses on both sides with a strong close:
“If the massive culture war armageddon we’ve been dreading for years takes the form of record one-day chicken sandwich sales, maybe everybody walks away from this a winner. The right finally has got themselves a legitimate First Amendment gripe. And for people who are gay or support gay marriage, I get how seeing thousands of people come out to make this statement is incredibly disheartening. But take solace in this: gay marriage is happening. Like many drive-thru window lanes, it ain’t going backwards. And your bonus is this: you get gay marriage. All your political opponents are going to get is type 2 diabetes. Here is my prediction: in 10 years, America will have a lot more gay marriage and a lot more Chick-fil-A restaurants, because they are both quality products.”
* HOT SPRINGS RESTAURANT FIRE: Fox 16 reports serious fire at J's Italian Villla on Lake Hamilton.
* SPEAKING OF FRAUD: Rich item from Talking Points Memo — A fellow who wrote a paper claiming Voter ID laws protect, rather than disenfranchise, voters has an interesting past:
Horace Cooper, the author of the paper, .... does know a thing or two about falsifying documents. Cooper was indicted in 2009 on five public corruption charges, charged with exchanging political favors for gifts from Jack Abramoff. Cooper allegedly accepted bribes as a staffer to former Majority Leader Dick Armey, as chief of staff for Voice of America and when he worked for the Department of Labor. Cooper later pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of falsifying a disclosure report and was sentenced to 36 months of probation.
* MORE DETAILS ON SUSPECT'S DEATH IN JONESBORO: KAIT has a detailed report from Jonesboro police on additional information related to the death of a suspect in police custody, whom police believe shot himself fatally while handcuffed with a gun officers had missed in a search. The new information further supports the police theory in the case, the report says.
* I PRESUME THE KOCHS WILL HAVE SOMETHING TO SAY ABOUT THIS: The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality announces registration is open for a watershed conference “Water: Our Living Treasure” set for Oct. 10-12 at the Fort Smith Holiday Inn City Center. "From green planning to pollution reduction, a wide range of topics will be explored at the conference." Don't they know Republicans are about to control the legislature (and Arkansas watersheds). Don't they know regulation is over? Don't they get Teresa Oelke's mailings for the Kochs' Arkansas chapter of Americans for Prosperity?
* HOPE IN THE 1ST DISTRICT?: It's an internal poll summary (without the survey itself); some of the findings test campaign themes, etc. But: Democrat Scott Ellington's campaign says their polling indicates he could make a race against incumbent Republican Rep. Rick Crawford. Crawford's enormous financial resources will say more in the end about that than internal polling. I do find credible findings that "firm" support for Crawford falls slightly below the 50 percent level and that his recognition is relatively low for a sitting congressman. He hasn't done much to distinguish himself, nor has he done the incessant politicking that has, by way of contrast, distinguished Republican Rep. Tim Griffin's effort.
* OCCUPY LR STANDS FOR WHAT? The critics who wanted Occupy Little Rock to do something constructive might be interested to know that two OLR supporters are planning races for the Little Rock City Board. One is Kaitlin Lott. The other is Adam Lansky. Tell Lance Hines to grab his anti-tyranny battle helmet, the barbarians are at the gate. Lott is gathering petitions to run against Joan Adcock. She says it will be all grassroots, no campaign money. I'm not sure which of the other two seats, currently held by Dean Kumpuris and Gene Fortson, Lansky is targeting, but he's also promised a grassroots effort.
* HOW HOT IS IT?: National Weather Service updates: Little Rock is in 3rd place for greatest number of 100 deg days in a summer. 2012= 24 days, 1980=42 days, 1954=43 days. It made 101 today, well short of the record of 114 set last year.
Gov. Mike Beebe has declared a state of emergency in Arkansas to assist with the transport of hay during Arkansas's severe drought. This allows transport of large hay bales on controlled highways for 30 days.
* CHILDREN DIE IN HEAT: A two-year-old boy died after being left in a car in a Walmart parking lot in Springdale during 99-degree heat this afternoon. Local media reporting that great grandparents left him in car. Channel 11 is also reporting a child's death in a car Newport.