Friday, October 14, 2016

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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Montvale Event Center and Ella's Theater open to bring history to life

Posted By on Wed, Oct 12, 2016 at 12:41 PM

Montvale Event Center/Ella's Theater building view - EMILY GOODELL
  • Emily Goodell
  • Montvale Event Center/Ella's Theater building view

Something old and something new is coming to Spokane’s Entertainment District. Located on the 1000 block of West First Avenue, the Montvale Event Center and Ella’s Theater are open for business, in the former site of historic treasures like Ella’s Supper Club and the Odd Fellows Hall.

Montvale Event Center has multiple floors and venues that can be used singularly or as a whole, according to event coordinator Erin Hojnacki. She explains that when the center hosts weddings, the ceremony is held on the second floor, Ella’s Theater, while the first floor, Montvale Hall is used for the reception.  

The spaces — which add to developer Jerry Dicker's downtown hotel and entertainment collection — can also be utilized individually, which is typically the case with Ella’s Theater which is often used as an entertainment venue, hosting cabarets, music and comedy, Hojnacki says.

Montvale Hall - EMILY GOODELL
  • Emily Goodell
  • Montvale Hall
Although the space has been renovated and updated, careful attention was paid to preserving the building’s original features, the group behind the project says.

"The biggest changes are the commercial kitchen that was installed installed on this first floor, which we call Montvale Hall, [and] the exposed brick,” Hojnacki says. 

Hojnacki also noted that the elevator has been completely redone and brought up to code and a professional sound system was installed in the theater.

When the building was purchased in December 2015 by Jerry Dicker of GVD Commercial Properties, a press release noted: “his vision was to preserve the original speakeasy spirit of Ella’s in the second floor theater space, while also creating an elegant event space on the first floor.”

The press release also mentions that coming soon is Ella’s Bar, “a unique haven where guests can see a comedy show or listen to a local band while sipping something special and watching the revived projections playing on the wall of the Fox Theater across the street.”

Although the center has not had an official grand opening, it has already hosted multiple weddings, as well as events in the upstairs theater. The venue is currently booking events for 2017 and 2018.

"We have had reunions, weddings, comedy, theater and we're getting inquiries for all sorts of different events daily,” Hojinacki says.
Ella's Theater - EMILY GOODELL
  • Emily Goodell
  • Ella's Theater

Ella’s Theater recently wrapped up presenting [title of show] (yes, that's the actual title) by the Modern Theater, and is currently hosting the Friends of the Bing event series [email protected] Coming up is the special comedy event Reel Horror, a sketch show spoofing horror movies, set for Oct. 21.

According to a building history provided by the Spokane City/County Historic Preservation Office and the Spokane Historic Landmarks Commission, the former Odd Fellows building was opened on January 1,1909. It was originally known as the Odd Fellows IOOF Lodge and was designed by renowned Spokane architect Albert Held.

Piano at Ella's Theater - EMILY GOODELL
  • Emily Goodell
  • Piano at Ella's Theater
According to the Sovereign Grand Lodge Independent Order of Odd Fellows website, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF) began as a response to the trials and tribulations of living in 17th century England. Sickness, death and a very low life expectancy were hardships of the times. A group of people came together and pooled some of their income into a fund to be used for emergencies in their community, such as illness, unemployment and death.

They were called “odd fellows” because people found it odd that they would be selfless and impractical in giving up their time and money to help others. The organization was founded in North America on April 26, 1819 in Baltimore, Maryland, which is the location of the first lodge, gaining its charter through Manchester Unity of Odd Fellows in England.

IOOF became the first national fraternity that included women. Today there are men and women in 10,000 lodges in 26 countries, according to the Sovereign Grand Lodge Independent Order of Odd Fellows website, where their mission statement reads, "visit the sick, relieve the distressed, bury the dead and educate the orphan."

The building history from the SHLC and Spokane City/County Historic Preservation Office notes that the ground floor was originally home to Herring-Hall-Marvin Safe Company and Turnbull undertaking rooms. The floor became host to the Riley Candy Company from 1917 to the mid-1940s. Metronome Dance Hall was on the first floor from 1950 to 1953 and became Hi-Spot Dance hall from 1945 to 1956. The Lodge Room was on the second floor, while the third floor was banquet hall, parlor and kitchen.

The historic building has been mostly vacant since the closing of the jazz club Ella’s Supper Club shortly after its opening in 2004.

"The quality of work, uniqueness of the space, the history of the building, I think those are the main things that set it apart. There's nothing else like it," Hojinacki says.

For more information, contact Erin Hojnacki at 509-534-5805, or visit the Montvale Event Center website.
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Spokane will apply for HUD project to end youth homelessness

Posted By on Wed, Oct 12, 2016 at 10:30 AM

Angelina, 17, became homeless earlier this year and ended up in a massive homeless encampment in Seattle - YOUNG KWAK
  • Young Kwak
  • Angelina, 17, became homeless earlier this year and ended up in a massive homeless encampment in Seattle

In a city the size of Spokane, ending youth homelessness may be possible given the right resources. At least that's the thinking of a collaborative work group that's been meeting to discuss how to solve youth homelessness in Spokane. 

"Our hope and belief," says Dawn Kinder, Spokane's Community, Housing, & Human Services director, "is that we can be heavily impacted by three to four million dollars." 

The city of Spokane will compete for a national two-year pilot to end youth homelessness, through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The program, called the Youth Homelessness Demonstration Program, will select 10 communities to participate, four of which will be rural communities.

Communities selected will be awarded a minimum of $1 million and up to a total of $15 million.

In September, we published a cover story detailing the struggles facing homeless students in the state. There are 13,000 unaccompanied youth between the ages of 12 and 24 who experience homelessness in Washington each year, according to a state coalition aimed at addressing the problem. That number counts homelessness under the HUD definition of homelessness, which generally doesn't include kids or families staying with others or "doubling up." 

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McMorris Rodgers, McMullin and other McHeadlines this Wednesday

Posted By on Wed, Oct 12, 2016 at 9:42 AM

Erin Jones and Chris Reykdal throw down, Superintendent style!
  • Erin Jones and Chris Reykdal throw down, Superintendent style!

Addicted to Workahol

Workaholics' Adam Devine is coming to Spokane.

Bail to the King

Spokane is one Washington state's leaders when it comes to bail reform.


Say goodbye to spreadsheets and hello to bedsheets. Prison bedsheets, that is. Which is where you're going! Prison. 

A Spokane CPA has been sentenced to 15 months in prison for fraud. [Spokesman-Review]

Trump: Candidate, Businessman, Moral Crucible
Shawn Vestal heaps praise upon the courage of Idaho Sen. Mike Crapo, and scorn upon Cathy McMorris Rodgers. [Spokesman-Review]


The Spokesman runs down last night's debate for State Superintendent.


Grope and Change
Buzzfeed reports that Donald Trump would walk in on contestants — some as young as 15 — changing during the Miss Teen USA pageant. In other words, there's a chance that the FBI could literally be controlled by the sort of creep that wears "Female Body Inspector" shirts.

Evan Almighty 
A new poll comes out showing Hillary and Trump tied in Utah. But that's not even the craziest thing. Third-party candidate Evan McMullin is within striking distance. Who? Exactly! That's what's so crazy! [Deseret News]

Look at all those datums!

FiveThirtyEight builds a system that shows how shifts in demographic groups could impact county-level voting. Trump could likely do better in Spokane County than Romney, but a lot worse in Whitman County.
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