The Leader

What we need: more lobbyists
Every taxpayer was excited to learn last week that Arkansas had landed exactly what it needed most, another highly paid lobbyist.

Teaching history
The impulse to stay out of the dogfight among educators and historians over the teaching of Arkansas history in the schools is almost irresistible. [FULL TEXT]

Loopholes in FOI Act
A little forbidden sex can lead judges and prosecutors down strange legal corridors, as we learned often during the long Whitewater ordeal. [FULL TEXT]

Huck’s computers
Mike Huckabee’s durable political life has been built partly on his ability to turn a harrowing escape into a picnic in the park. [FULL TEXT]

Huck runs short of cash
Our favorite son candidate for president, according to the federal campaign-finance reports filed over the weekend, has now raised enough money to mount a creditable race for state land commissioner.


Local TV closes in on killing
When it comes to local TV news, they say if it bleeds, it leads.

Kids, dope don’t mix with driver
He’s been driving a bus for the Pulaski County Special School District for 22 years, and this summer he drives a van for special-education students who attend a summer program at the Jacksonville Middle School for Boys.

Stax marks 50 years of great music
If you remember Isaac Hayes’ “Theme from Shaft,” the Staples Singers’ “Respect Yourself,” Eddy Floyd’s “Knock on Wood,” Otis Redding’s “Dock of the Bay,” Booker T. and the MGs’ “Green Onions” and the Mar-Keys’ “Last Night,” you would have enjoyed a concert last month in Memphis commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Stax record label.

Air strategy saving lives
Brig. Gen. (Select) Rowayne Schatz is in his office at the headquarters of the 314th Airlift Wing at Little Rock Air Force Base, where he’s the commander, and he reaches for a dagger he’d brought back from Qatar a couple of years ago, when he was in charge of running airlifts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Payday series wins award in competition
(The Arkansas Press Association awarded The Leader first place in the Better Newspaper Contest for our in-depth reporting on payday lenders. This column from March 22, 2006 was part of that series.)
A populist state like Arkansas, which once had the lowest usury rate in the nation — 10 percent was the interest limit until 1982 — now allows payday lenders to charge outrageous interest rates — often several hundred percent interest.


Next move may be up to federal prosecutor
When the FBI completes its public-corruption probe into former Cabot Mayor Stubby Stumbaugh’s administration, interim U.S. Attorney Tim Griffin in Little Rock could be the one who decides whether to file charges against Stumbaugh and his cronies.

How city wiped out vet’s investment
A veteran of Vietnam, Iraq and the former Yugoslavia, Jim Eggert bought two commercial buildings in Jacksonville, but the closing of the Graham Road rail crossing killed business. He’s put his property up for sale, but he’ll have to take a huge loss.

Famed photographer had roots in area
If you turn off Hwy. 5 at Cabot near the freeway and drive down Cleland Road for less than a mile, you’ll come to Mt. Pleasant Road.

U.S. prosecutor demoted over bullying e-mail
Witness in Campbell trial used his government computer and official title to try to intimidate newspaper with threat of a $50 million libel suit and takeover of The Leader.

Why didn’t feds take this case?
You may have wondered while you were following the corruption trial of Jay and Kelly Campbell in Lonoke County why the U.S. attorney’s office in Little Rock didn’t prosecute the couple, along with two shady bail bondsmen, who will be tried later.

Politics at local level rough, just ask mayor
“All politics is local.”
— Thomas “Tip” O’Neill,
— longtime Speaker of the House
The political pros know that voters are more passionate about local issues than about national politics, even in time of war.

You cannot judge a book by its cover
The cover of Elizabeth Jacoway’s book on the Central High School integration crisis reproduces one of the most famous photos of the civil rights era. [FULL TEXT]














July 25, 2007

Katie Rayburn (right) demonstrates the proper way to pull a mock drowning victim, L.J. Tarrant, from a pool. Rayburn and Tarrant are lifequards at the Cabot city pool, along with Chrissy Mackey, far left. The pool is open all week long for residents.

Villines hoping to pass jail tax
IN SHORT: Hathaway thanks county judge for taking quick action on task force recommendations to fund improvements. [FULL TEXT]

Battling bad traffic together
IN SHORT: Cabot officials are working with schools to ease congestion around town.

Beebe bans almost all pit bulls in town
IN SHORT: Ordinance goes into effect immediately with passage of emergency clause. [FULL TEXT]

Housing on golf course would cost city millions
IN SHORT: Sherwood taxpayers would face millions in infrastructure costs if the country club is turned into a subdivision, city engineer tells aldermen. [FULL TEXT]

Harry Potter fans jam stores, library
IN SHORT:Youngsters and parents go to local bookstores and libraries to get new book. [FULL TEXT]

Pathfinder to expand
IN SHORT:Group will build a new pre-school and remodel a building. [FULL TEXT]



Sherwood’s Jayson Simmons competed in two silver and three gold events with a best finish of second in the 10U butterfly.

Sharks bite into fourth title
IN SHORT: Sherwood and Cabot both broke several records at the 2007 Meet of Champs. [FULL TEXT]

AA Bruins move to state
IN SHORT: The Sylvan Hills Class AA team begins play in the American Legion state tournament tomorrow morning in Hot Springs. [FULL TEXT]

Bad luck leaves Gwatney AAA feeling ‘Blue’
IN SHORT: Jacksonville made good opportunities, but couldn’t make good fortune in a 7-2 loss to Little Rock Monday. [FULL TEXT]


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