Friday, October 14, 2016

THIS WEEKEND IN MUSIC: Indigo Girls, Ringo Starr, Anthrax and more

Posted By on Fri, Oct 14, 2016 at 4:24 PM


Tonight, Spokane's folk-forward group Folkinception hosts its own album-recording fundraiser at Iron Goat Brewing Co. The forthcoming CD will be the crowd-pleasing band's second, and their first album was funded by crowdsourcing as well (read about that right here). The show, which starts at 7 pm, is free to attend but donations are greatly appreciated.

With their new EP, Throw Your Head to the World!, local act Boat Race Weekend is still taking their emotional style of pop-punk quite seriously. The busy group — childhood best friends who formed a band in 2013 while attending Gonzaga University — will share the four-track EP in its entirety at Saturday’s release show at the Big Dipper, which starts at 7:30 pm and is $8 at the door. The EP was produced and recorded by Dawson Scholz of the Idaho-based the Ongoing Concept.

Over the decade's Erika Wennerstrom's songwriting has evolved, but she's still a bluesy belter at heart. To better give you a taste of her style, the singer-songwriter leaves her band, the Heartless Bastards, behind for her solo show at the Bartlett this Saturday. The show starts at 8 pm and is $15 the day of. 
This weekend, they're just two girls and an orchestra.
  • This weekend, they're just two girls and an orchestra.

Indigo Girls
hook up with the Spokane Symphony Saturday to deliver one of the most thrilling mash-ups of the season. Expect this totally live set to make you rethink the band's entire catalogue. The show starts at 8 pm and starts at $40. Read our fresh interview with the band right here. 

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3rd annual Big Lebowski Suds & Cinema coming up: Beer! Costumes! Free parking! A rug that ties the room together!

Posted By on Fri, Oct 14, 2016 at 2:50 PM


Two years ago, we invited folks to watch the Big Lebowski with us for our Suds & Cinema series, our local beer-meets-movies event. We packed a theater with that screening, so we did it again the following year. That worked, too.

So, for the third year, we're doing a Lebowski celebration on Thursday, Oct. 20. And it's at a new venue for us — Riverside Place, which most of you know as the old Masonic Center. We've got a huge, creepy-cool room reserved for the screening, which features beer from No-Li Brewhouse, Lebowski-themed ice cream from Brain Freeze and also some other food options.

The parking, located on Main Avenue on the north side of the Masonic Center, is completely free if you're going to the movie. Admission is just $5 at the door, too.

And if you decide to dress up as a character from the movie, you could be walking home with some cold, hard cash from Horizon Credit Union. We'll have three categories: the Dude, Walter and Wild Card (any other character in the film). Winners of each category receive $50.

We'll be getting beers going at 6 pm, with the contest and movie starting around 7 pm.
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Actually, the DEA isn't going to ban opioid-like drug kratom — yet

Posted By on Fri, Oct 14, 2016 at 11:30 AM


Last month, we reported the Drug Enforcement Agency's plans to ban kratom, the leaf from Asia with opioid-like effects. 

Turns out that's not happening anymore. 

After backlash from those who use the ground-up leaves, members of Congress, scientists who spoke of the potential to help people manage chronic pain and kick opioid addiction and basically the entire Internet, the DEA back-peddled in an unprecedented move.

DEA Special Agent Melvin Patterson told the Seattle Times that the agency has never reversed itself like this before.

Protesters even marched on Pennsylvania Avenue near the White House.

Congressional Republicans and Democrats alike objected to the DEA's impending ban in a letter saying the move "threatens the transparency of the scheduling process and its responsiveness to the input of both citizens and the scientific community."

So far, six states — Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Wisconsin, Vermont and Tennessee — have banned kratom on their own. But adding the plant to the DEA's list of Schedule 1 controlled substances would prevent scientists from studying it and would make it a felony to possess it. Other Schedule 1 substances include LSD, heroin, Ecstasy and marijuana and, by definition of the DEA, have "no currently accepted medical use." 

It its initial announcement, the DEA cited 15 kratom-related deaths, but 14 of those involved other drugs. 

This doesn't mean the DEA will never ban kratom. But the agency has decided to continue taking input from the public until Dec. 1, and will potentially make a decision after that.
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Why libertarian Tea Party Republican Ed Pace endorses a Democrat for county commission

Posted By on Fri, Oct 14, 2016 at 10:45 AM

Spokane Valley Councilman Ed Pace
  • Spokane Valley Councilman Ed Pace

On most issues, Ed Pace and Andrew Biviano don't see eye-to-eye, to say the least.

Pace, a Spokane Valley City Councilman, is a self-proclaimed libertarian, constitutionalist, Tea Party Republican (who says he doesn't feel obligated to be loyal to any political party). Biviano, a former mental health case worker who is now a civil rights attorney, is a Democrat running for a seat on the Spokane County Board of Commissioners. 

But when Pace announced this summer who he endorsed for county commissioner, he didn't choose the Republican who currently occupies the seat, Shelly O'Quinn. Instead, he chose Biviano. 

"It's not because Biviano and I are on the same side of the political spectrum — in fact, we're on opposite ends of it," Pace says.

So why does Pace endorse Biviano? It's partly because he values his experience as an attorney and mental health case worker. He thinks Biviano's skills in those areas will be helpful to the county. Pace and Biviano also agree that Greater Spokane Incorporated should not be funded by the government. And because, in Pace's view, O'Quinn is a "true politician," meaning her stances are prone to change based on the "political winds."

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GOP donors, Dobbs' dastardly deed and a windy batch of morning headlines

Posted By on Fri, Oct 14, 2016 at 9:44 AM

Power companies are reportedly prepping for potential outages due to today's expected windstorm. - YOUNG KWAK
  • Young Kwak
  • Power companies are reportedly prepping for potential outages due to today's expected windstorm.


• You a cat person or a dog person? Either way, vote in the Pawlitics poll put together by the Spokane Humane Society — and drop 'em a few bucks to support their efforts in saving cute and cuddly animals. 

• Learn why dog's smell so much better than humans, among other interesting tidbits, in this week's InHealth blog

• Tonight on Dateline NBC, they delve into the South Hill murder-for-hire case of James Henrikson. See a preview of the episode here


Batten down the hatches
Yes, it's going to be windy today. No, it's not going to be a repeat of last year's Windpocalypse. We hope. (KXLY)

The Spokesman-Review reports on the fact the Spokane Fire Department has only hired one woman in the last 18 years. That is...not many. 

A Kootenai County hunter last seen on Monday was found dead at the bottom of a ravine near Bernard Peak. (KREM)


Should I Stay Or Should I Go
Big GOP donors are the latest group to have to decide whether to stick by beleagured presidential candidate Donald Trump. (New York Times)

Seriously dude?
Fox Business anchor Lou Dobbs tweeted out the phone number and address of one of the women accusing Trump of inappropriate behavior. What a cool guy! (Washington Post)

The Clinton campaign, in the meantime, finds itself the target of angry religious leaders over some comments about Catholics found in the campaign emails leaked by Wikileaks. (CNN)

I Love LA
The Los Angeles Dodgers took out the Washington Nationals in the deciding game of their playoff series, setting up a National League showdown with the Chicago Cubs. Tonight, the American League championship series kicks off with the Cleveland Indians and Toronto Bluejays. (ESPN)
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Thursday, October 13, 2016

Spokane Humane Society's "Pawlitics" puts twist on election to help pets

Posted By on Thu, Oct 13, 2016 at 4:54 PM

Cat person or dog person? Every vote for your species counts!
  • Cat person or dog person? Every vote for your species counts!

Put aside your differences regarding the two-legged candidates running for presidential office this election cycle. The real question is at hand: Are you for the Democats, or the Repuplicans? 

For its newest fundraising and community awareness campaign, the nonprofit Spokane Humane Society is asking the community to cast their votes for the four-legged species of their preference. (Full disclosure: I volunteer there on a semi-regular basis to snuggle and socialize cats; and my adorable floofy cat Dellie is an SHS alumna... which means you also might guess which party I'm for here).

The main goal of the campaign — launched earlier this week at — is to get the public to interact with the shelter in a fun way, while learning more about its mission and the need for financial support to carry out that mission. Another angle of the program is to emphasize responsible pet-ownership behaviors, which in turn helps lower the number of animals in shelters.

"This political, two-legged campaign is not something anyone is excited about, so in an attempt to grab onto some of the fever that's been boiling over, we thought this would be a nice way to have a laugh and take a break," says Jenna Carroll, Spokane Humane Society outreach and volunteer coordinator.

On, users can vote for their favorite Democat or Repuplican party candidate vying for positions like "Senat-grr" (this week's featured race) and "Secretary of Plate" (one of the races to come).

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Your dog's nose knows, docs vs. apps and trivia for a good cause

Posted By on Thu, Oct 13, 2016 at 4:41 PM


Smelly Dog Tales

Ever wondered why your dog can’t stop sniffing? What’s the rationale behind all that tail-wagging? Both behaviors are a result of a dog’s rich “scent environment.”

And although the dog’s sense of smell is magnificently better than a human's, for the most part, humans aren’t even using the limited capacity we possess. “It’s not culturally permissible in Western culture to stick our noses in things or other people,” says Alexandra Horowitz, the author of a new book called Being a Dog: Following a Dog Into a World of Smell. “We’re in a deodorization moment in time.” Horowitz is determined to take back that sense of smell as she recounts exploring New York City with her dog.

Doctors versus Apps 

While many of us turn to “Dr. Google” before we consult with a real physician, a new study shows cyber-diagnosticians have a long way to go before they can compete with a flesh-and-blood medical school graduate. In one test, which pitted symptom-checking apps against a group of physicians, including residents and fellows, the humans got the correct diagnosis 72 percent of the time, while the apps and websites were right just 34 percent of the time. Doctors outperformed apps even more when it came to identifying uncommon maladies.

Trivia Time! 

Here’s you chance to cheer on corporate and individual teams as they test their knowledge at the annual Spokane Trivia Championship, benefitting the Spokane Public Library’s STEM programs.

Audience members can play along as questions will be projected on a screen while teams scramble to write their answers on a white board. Prizes go to Best Cheering Section and Funniest Wrong Answer. The fun is Wednesday, Oct. 19,  at 7 pm at the Bing Crosby Theater, 901 W. Sprague.
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Henrikson murder-for-hire trial featured on Dateline NBC this Friday

Posted By on Thu, Oct 13, 2016 at 10:30 AM

James Henrikson
  • James Henrikson

A business deal apparently gone wrong, a vindictive goon and a murder-for-hire plot that ended in the deaths of two men — one buried somewhere in North Dakota's oil fields, the other a Spokane businessman.

Those are the details that led a jury to convict James Henrikson of 11 charges for his role in ordering the hits on Kristopher "K.C." Clarke and Douglas Carlile. Clarke's body has never been found, and Carlile was murdered in his South Hill home in 2013. Timothy Suckow, a Spokane Valley resident, confessed to killing both men at Henrikson's direction.

Henrikson was given multiple life sentences in May for his role in the plots. 

This Friday, Dateline NBC will air interviews with Henrikson's girlfriend Sarah Creveling, who is speaking publicly for the first time. The episode will also feature never-before-seen footage of Henrikson's interrogation and an interview with Carlile's widow, Elberta Carlile.

The episode airs 8 pm PT. Here's a teaser: 

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Spokane style, Trump accused of groping and Bob Dylan wins Nobel Prize

Posted By on Thu, Oct 13, 2016 at 9:18 AM


NEWS: Gov. Jay Inslee probably has this one in the bag. But how effective has he been, really?

FASHION: What exactly is Spokane Style? Culture writers Laura Johnson and Chey Scott dig into what sets Spokane apart, and introduce you to some regional trends and designers in this week's Fashion Issue

MUSIC: A local man's recovery from a brain tumor with the help of rock 'n' roll by way of Toto and The Beatles. 


• Donald Trump said during the second presidential debate that he had never touched or kissed women without their permission. They were "just words, folks." Now, two women are calling bullshit. (New York Times)

• Bob Dylan wins the Nobel Prize in literature, not for a novel, but for "having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition." Dylan is the first American to win the Nobel Prize in literature since Toni Morrison. (Rolling Stone)

Wells Fargo CEO and chairman John Stumpf resigned yesterday after reports that employees created fake accounts for customers without their permission and charged them fees. (Los Angeles Times)
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Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Why Evan McMullin, the presidential candidate who could win Utah, isn't on the WA ballot

Posted By on Wed, Oct 12, 2016 at 4:31 PM

Could win Utah. Isn't on the ballot in Washington.
  • Could win Utah. Isn't on the ballot in Washington.

Say you're a Washington state voter, like my mom or dad, who can't bring yourself to stomach voting for either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton.

If you don't want to write in anyone, you can vote for Libertarian Gary Johnson or Green Party candidate Jill Stein, of course. You can vote for Darrell Castle with the Constitution Party. If socialism is your thing you have your choice of Alyson Kennedy with the Socialist Worker's Party or Gloria Estela La Riva with the Socialism & Liberation Party.

Who you can't vote for is the one third party candidate who — crazily enough — seems like he has an outside shot of winning a state: A Deseret News poll this morning showed that Evan McMullin, a conservative candidate who ran intending to be a symbolic counter to Trump, was polling at 22 percent in Utah. Not only is that a massive level for an independent, but Hillary and Trump were both polling at 26 percent. And the poll has a 4.4 percent margin of error. In other words, if this poll isn't just an insane outlier, McMullin, despite being a relative unknown,  is within striking distance of winning Utah. 

Here's a section of McMullin's statement published in The Hill today, which mixes considerable pessimism with considerable optimism: 
The Republican Party may very well not survive the latest debacle; its true conservatives will never reconcile themselves to its unprincipled support for Trump and his supporters will never forgive the party for its alleged betrayal.

Thus, the struggle on the right will not end on Election Day. That’s why my campaign is determined not just to win Utah and as many other states as possible, but to launch an enduring movement to revive conservative principles.
McMullin actually has a few connections to Washington state. He grew up in rural Auburn. He was the former policy director for the House Republican Conference under Spokane's U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, where he pushed a sanctions bill against Syria.

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