Wednesday, November 23, 2016

The Inlander presents the inaugural Pop-Up Martini Party

Posted By on Wed, Nov 23, 2016 at 1:26 PM


The Wednesday before Thanksgiving is widely believed to be the busiest bar night of the year in America. With friends and family in from out of town, the kitchen most likely occupied, and a stressful holiday approaching, it's a great time to catch up with a cocktail in your hand.

Have no fear— the Inlander is here to help.

From 4 to 7 pm tonight at The Reserve in downtown Spokane, there will be $3 martinis and $5 drink specials, sure to get you cheaply and sufficiently relaxed to deal with the hubbub of tomorrow's family festivities.

This is the first of our new Pop-Up happy hour series and this time around, we'll have giveaways including Coeur d'Alene Holiday Cruise tickets, Inlander swag, a River City Brewing growler, Tom Sawyer coffee and more.

DJ Jazzy will be spinning some tunes for your sipping pleasure.
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City paid thousands for help handling records requests from former city attorney, independent investigator

Posted By on Wed, Nov 23, 2016 at 1:04 PM

Like the other pieces of fallout from the independent investigation, the dueling records requests from independent investigator Kris Cappel and the lawyer for former City Attorney Nancy Isserlis have quietly gone away. - DANIEL WALTERS PHOTO ILLUSTRATION
  • Daniel Walters photo illustration
  • Like the other pieces of fallout from the independent investigation, the dueling records requests from independent investigator Kris Cappel and the lawyer for former City Attorney Nancy Isserlis have quietly gone away.

Earlier this year, former City Attorney Nancy Isserlis was outraged by the conclusions of independent investigator Kris Cappel. In particularly, she expressed outrage by the accusation that she had intentionally withheld damning records about sexual harassment allegations against former Police Chief Frank Straub until after last year's election.

As the Inlander had reported, a series of scathing letters were traded back and forth between Cappel and Isserlis's attorney, John Spencer Stewart, sparking both to make major records requests.

Contrary to Cappel's conclusions, Stewart argued that the sexual harassment complaints about the chief had been properly documented. In response, Cappel filed a records request with the city on Aug. 17, asking for records from the city attorney's office referencing a number of different parties involved with the Straub scandal.

Two days later, Stewart filed his own massive records request about aspects of the investigation itself.

This set the stage for a lengthy public records battle that could stretch late into next year, possibly revealing new information about the city attorney's office or the investigation.

But just as essentially every other loose end regarding the Straub scandal evaporated after the mayoral recall attempt was rejected, the records request issue quietly faded away as well. Still, handling the two requests already cost the city thousands of dollars.

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Trump's U.N. ambassador picked, really hard-hitting cider and morning headlines

Posted By on Wed, Nov 23, 2016 at 9:56 AM

This UFCW ad was taken down off of STA buses after it was determined it violated their advertising policy - PROVIDED BY STA
  • Provided by STA
  • This UFCW ad was taken down off of STA buses after it was determined it violated their advertising policy


The Battle for the Side of the Bus
STA fires the contractor for their advertising — but it's not because he wasn't selling ads. Instead, it goes to a fight over the First Amendment.

How To Talk About Politics with Your Relatives This Thanksgiving


Or alternatively...

Pour Some Sugar On Teens

Turns out UK teens drink a bathtub (or as they call bathtubs in Britain, a "lorry") full of sugary drinks every year.

Hard Cider

Spokane homeowners tackle a vehicle prowler, and hit him over the head with a cider bottle. (KHQ)

More Like A Church Parking Lot than a Sanctuary
EWU won't defy immigration officials from raids, but will try to promote diversity on campus. (Spokesman-Review)

A mentally ill man who tried to commit suicide by cop meets the cops who wouldn't let him. (KXLY)


This HUDs for you

Trump offers the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development job to Ben Carson, despite Ben Carson assuring the public he's extremely unqualified for a cabinet position. (New York Times)

News for Hire
Breitbart journalists, and the Steve Bannon, were getting huge salaries from an ideologically-driven charity. (Washington Post)

Haley to the Chief
SC Gov. Nikki Haley is going to be Trump's U.N. ambassador. (Washington Post)

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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Tips to survive Thanksgiving with your politically-opposed relatives

Posted By on Tue, Nov 22, 2016 at 4:26 PM

For reasons we're all keenly aware, this year's Thanksgiving holiday might test our limits of patience and understanding a little more than usual.

To get through the meal, or your relatives' stay, as peacefully as possible, putting a ban on any and all political talk might be the only option for some families. Others, meanwhile, might be choosing not to sit down for dinner with their politically-opposed family members (including one Spokane woman recently interviewed by the New York Times). And then there are families who might openly welcome a discussion of America's volatile political beliefs in an attempt to understand just why Uncle Billy or cousin Sally voted for their candidate of choice.

We've been seeing lots of helpful advice on this matter in the past couple days; so let's review.

The nonprofit anti-hate group Showing Up for Racial Justice has outlined some tips for bringing up the election and the subsequent concerns many of us feel with a nagging sense of urgency. A new splash page replacing the organization's home page explicitly encourages white Americans to prompt tough conversations with other white people about racial justice. There is a printable discussion guide, and even a holiday hotline (text line, rather, but if you're really stuck, a representative can be available for a coaching call) that offers helpful talking points to get conversation back on track and productive.

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Teens' sugar rush, potential breakthrough in polycystic ovarian syndrome and more

Posted By on Tue, Nov 22, 2016 at 3:16 PM

A bathtub of orange soda
  • A bathtub of orange soda

Try Water!
Startling news that British teens drink enough sugary drinks to fill a bathtub every year. If you've been around a group of teens here in the U.S. you can feel pretty confident they are keeping up with their counterparts in the U.K. Researchers there advocate slapping a tax on sugar-laden beverages.

Two Benefits, One Drug
A new study shows people taking a class of medication called thiazide diuretics to control high blood pressure have a lower risk of fractures. The connection seems reasonable. "It is well known that thiazide therapy can lower calcium excretion into the urine by as much as 50 percent," said Dr. Caroline Messer, who reviewed the new findings.

Jennifer Myers suffered for years with symptoms of polycystic ovarian syndrome. - MAC BOOEY
  • Mac Booey
  • Jennifer Myers suffered for years with symptoms of polycystic ovarian syndrome.

Resveratrol for Hormone Disorder

For women suffering with polycystic ovarian syndrome, the symptoms can be distressing, as Linda Hagen Miller writes in the current issue of InHealth.

"Women have burst into tears in my office out of relief when I tell them they have polycystic ovarian syndrome," says Providence's R. Steven Brisbois. "They are just so relieved to be able to put a name to what is going on in their bodies, and to find out what can be done to control PCOS symptoms."

Up till now, treatment involved birth control pills or metformin. But a new study shows resveratrol, the substance that occurs naturally in grapes, nuts and red wine, may be helpful.

"For women with PCOS whose symptoms are being treated conventionally with hormones and/or metformin, resveratrol may be a better alternative—in the short term,” says Andrew Rubman, ND. The dose required is too large to get through food, so interested women will have to find a resveratrol supplement.
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Seahawks' Baldwin urges deadly-force change, Trump waffling and morning headlines

Posted By on Tue, Nov 22, 2016 at 9:25 AM



Stocking up
In Washington, like the rest of the nation, women are more interested in long-acting birth control following the election of Donald Trump. (Spokesman-Review)

Doug Baldwin - SEAHAWKS.COM
  • Doug Baldwin
Without malice
With the encouragement of Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin, a Washington legislative task force approved a recommendation to change the state law that makes it almost impossible for prosecutors to charge police officers who may have wrongfully killed someone. (Seattle Times)

Bus crash kills children

Six children were killed in Chattanooga, Tennessee, when a school bus slammed into a tree. The bus driver has been arrested and charged with vehicular homicide, reckless endangerment and reckless driving.

(He won't) lock her up!
Even though Donald Trump said during the campaign he would assign a special prosecutor to investigate Hillary Clinton, and even though his supporters chanted "Lock her up!" throughout the campaign, it turns out Trump likely won't pursue an investigation against Clinton.

Nazi salutes
Richard Spencer, the man who popularized the term "alt-right," was caught on video giving a speech to audience members who gave him the Nazi salute as Spencer yelled "Hail Trump! Hail our people! Hail victory!" Watch the video from the Atlantic below.

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Monday, November 21, 2016

Ice Storm '96 was 20 years ago this week

Posted By on Mon, Nov 21, 2016 at 4:45 PM

A tree splintered by Ice Storm's wrath, in Spokane's Corbin Park. - DAN HAGERMAN
  • Dan Hagerman
  • A tree splintered by Ice Storm's wrath, in Spokane's Corbin Park.

While many of us last week looked back to events that happened a year ago — the massive windstorm that left so many without power (and heat) for days — another major weather milestone that happened around this time is also remembered: Ice Storm 1996.

Let's recap the details surrounding Ice Storm:
  • Ice Storm began on Tuesday, Nov. 19, 1996
  • Before that, between 2-4 inches of snow had accumulated in the area
  • Things went from fine to worse when 1.5 inches of freezing rain fell on top of the snow, coating everything in sheets of ice
  • Trees could not withstand the weight and crashed down on power lines and buildings (this site has dozens of photos showing the storm's aftermath)
  • Then-mayor of Spokane Jack Geraghty declared a state of emergency, which lasted until Dec. 1, 1996
  • More than half of the city's residents lost power; three days after the storm 100,000 people in the region were still without power
  • It took up to two weeks for some outlying areas to reconnect to the power grid
  • The damage from Ice Storm caused the worst power outage in 108 years (in other words, since electricity had existed out West). According to Avista, the only event on record to cause more power outages than Ice Storm was last November's unprecedented windstorm.
  • Four people lost their lives in events relating to the storm
  • Total damages were estimated at more than $22 million
  • Ice Storm remains one of the region's most severe weather events on record
Several of us on the Inlander staff, have lasting memories of Ice Storm, which we share below. Leave your own Ice Storm memories in the comments!

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Letter to the Editor: Spokane, you're great!

Posted By on Mon, Nov 21, 2016 at 2:55 PM

"Spokane Sunset," a photo submitted for the 2016-17 Annual Manual cover contest. - STUART DANFORD
  • Stuart Danford
  • "Spokane Sunset," a photo submitted for the 2016-17 Annual Manual cover contest.
While the political divide across America seems to grow deeper every day post-election, what follows is a bright spot, and something that actually has little to do with politics.

Some of you reading this may remember an awesome social media campaign making the rounds last month, courtesy of our great Northern Neighbors. "Tell America it's Great" was the work of a Toronto-based ad agency, featuring a candid video of friendly Canadians sharing what they think is great about the Red, White and Blue. It remains a fun and heartwarming reminder that our country is, and has always been, great.

Turns out, some of our Canadian friends also think Spokane is pretty great, as pointed out in this thoughtfully-written letter recently sent to the Inlander. (We think you're great, too, Canada!)

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Monday Morning Place Kicker: Eags rule, 'hawks roll and Cougs playing for the Pac-12 North

Posted By on Mon, Nov 21, 2016 at 10:30 AM

As barrel into the long Thanksgiving weekend, the region's football teams are getting down to the wire. This weekend saw some good, some bad and plenty of reason to look forward to watching some ball between bouts of a turkey coma.

Let's break it down:
EWU is the nation's No. 2 seed in the FCS playoffs. - EWU ATHLETICS
  • EWU Athletics
  • EWU is the nation's No. 2 seed in the FCS playoffs.

Eastern Washington finished off an undefeated Big Sky season with a Friday night win at Portland State, winning 35-28. The Eags didn't make it easy on themselves, falling behind 14-0 early, and then needing two fourth-quarter touchdowns to win it, and end up tied atop the Big Sky standings with North Dakota, who also went 8-0 in conference.
The Big Takeaway: The Eags are the No. 2 seed in the country heading into the playoffs, meaning they'll get to play in Cheney every game until a potential National Championship battle in January down in Frisco, Texas. They get the coming weekend off before playing on Saturday, Dec. 3, against the winner of Illinois State/Central Arkansas.
What to say to your Eags-fan friend today: "Can your car make it to Texas?"

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White supremacists rally in D.C., Standing Rock protesters attacked and morning headlines

Posted By on Mon, Nov 21, 2016 at 8:47 AM

The Standing Rock protest on a more peaceful night. - JEFF FERGUSON
  • Jeff Ferguson
  • The Standing Rock protest on a more peaceful night.


GRiZ, slam poetry and turkey trots all part of What's Up This Week.


Turn on your laptops
The Spokesman-Review has a handy guide to navigating the airport security line just in time for Thanksgiving travel.

Dare to dream
Is downtown Spokane construction really ending soon? (KREM)

Election night was rough for a lot of people

Washington state reportedly saw a serious surge in pot sales, blowing past the $200 million mark for quarterly sales in the second quarter of the year. Marijuana sales nearly equaled booze sales for the time frame. (KXLY)

Who knew?
Apparently vegans like to enjoy community fellowship and a big feast just like carnivores. Front-page news today from the Spokesman-Review.


Not cool, North Dakota
Protestors at Standing Rock were blasted with water hoses in sub-freezing temperatures in North Dakota last night, with police calling the action necessary to quell a "riot" by the people trying to stop construction of the Dakota Access pipeline.

Here's Washington Post video of the activity: Conflicts of interest?
Academics, legal minds and Trump employees are all trying to figure out how to separate the president-elect's business interests from the country's interests.

They're actually white supremacists
The media was all over a convention of so-called "alt-right" folks who spent the weekend reveling in their whiteness, throwing up the occasional "Heil Hitler!" salute and reveling in the victory of Donald Trump. (New York Times)

Cool pope makes cool move
Pope Francis announced that abortion is a sin that can be forgiven by Catholic priests. The church still considers abortion a sin, but the move continues a special dispensation the pope granted for forgiveness during the church's last "Year of Mercy."
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