Morning roundup: From football and divorce to special cop handling | Arkansas Blog

Morning roundup: From football and divorce to special cop handling



Some odds and ends in the mail:

WHY PUNT? When you have Kolton Browning
  • WHY PUNT? When you have Kolton Browning
* GO FOR IT: Hog fans are talking about an ESPN column that suggests Pulaski Academy football coach Kevin Kelley's no-punt philosophy reached UL-Monroe and may have played a role in the upset Saturday of the Hogs. The Monroe squad went for first downs repeatedly on fourth down, with great success.

* SPEAKING OF FOOTBALL: Sparkling, matter-of-fact football analysis this morning on The Buzz by former Hog Bruce James. In a word: Defense.

* ARKANSAS BREAKS THE MOLD: Reuters/Ipsos polling indicates lower income Southern whites are more likely to oppose a wealthy candidate than a black candidate. All the more reason to scratch your head at Mitt Romney's wide preference among whites in poor Arkansas. Other factors work against President Obama in the South, of course. Health care legislation is a drag on him, ironically among people who need it most. Obama's burden on other Democratic candidates is all the more ironic, however, for Republican favoritism of the wealthy.

* SPECIAL HANDLING IN COP ARREST: Fox 16 reviews jail video and reports Little Rock Officer Josh Hastings, charged with manslaughter in the killing of a car theft suspect, got special handling in his release from the county jail after posting bond last week. Indeed, Hastings enjoyed unusual measures, such as the benefit of a bond set before arrest without having to wait for an initial court appearance, all of which kept him from public exposure before TV cameras at the time. The police cited "security" concerns.

* DIVORCE FILED: In the listings this morning: Wesley Clark Sr. v. Gertrude Clark. The retired NATO commander and former presidential candidate and his wife married in June 1966.

* NEW PASTOR: St. Mark Baptist Church, which calls itself the state's largest predominantly black congregation, installed a new pastor Sunday at the sprawling campus on W. 12th Street. You might recall the church found itself in a bit of a hubbub when Bishop Steven Arnold left the church in 2010 following an inappropriate relationship with a church member. A news release said Phillip L. Pointer Sr. was installed Sunday as the new senior pastor before a standing room-only crowd. He comes from Providence St. John Baptist Church in Washington.

* IF YOU REPEAT A LIE OFTEN ENOUGH .... I see in the morning paper that Little Rock city government misinformation has now resulted in the flat property tax — which applies at the same rate to rich and poor homes and vehicles, but exempts intangible property — being called a "progressive" tax. If that's so, then a flat rate income tax is progressive because the rich, who earn more, pay more. That's not the definition of a progressive tax. Certainly not when the new owner of a $100,000 house in a working class neighborhood pays the same effective tax as a millionaire who's lived in a house worth 10 times that much for a house he's owned for decades, thanks to the state circuit breaker law. That's progressive? Texas' reliance on the property tax over an income tax tells you all you need to know about what's progressive and what isn't. I still voted for the three-mill property tax. The city needs the money for streets and drainage.

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