A full Nelson
Sheffield Nelson, the former gas-company executive and many-times loser in politics, has always defied labeling, which is a good definition for honorable politician, even if it is not a reliable definition of a successful one.

The Ledge in session
When the legislature has little serious business to tend to, it turns its attention to monkey business. We knew there would be a lot of monkey business in the 88th General Assembly after the tumultuous elections last year, and there seems to be nothing momentous to do this winter but pass Gov. Beebe’s little half-penny reduction in the sales tax on groceries and a tight state budget.

Ethics reform
without teeth
The great democratic imperative, as exercised by the Arkansas Legislature, is that when people demand that you change your ways, pretend to do something. So the legislature is about to enact a law that pretends to end the back scratching and influence peddling that has so often characterized state legislatures, and this one in particular.


‘Hail Mary’ school plan
The Pulaski County Special School District says it has heard the complaints about rundown schools in Jacksonville and could build new schools as early as this summer. PCSSD officials told patrons this week the district will probably replace Arnold Drive, Tolleson and Jacksonville elementary schools and Jacksonville Middle School. The new schools could open in the fall of 2012.


Ex-Stax chief still has soul
Al Bell, the former Stax Records executive, is back in the spotlight with a new Web site, All Bell Presents American Soul Music, where you can hear classic Stax artists and new soul singers who are keeping the Memphis sound alive. [FULL TEXT]

Minihan: No break
for wing since 9/11
Col. Mike Minihan, commander of the 19th Airlift Wing, sent off 40 airmen and a couple of C-130s into combat before the storm hit last weekend. [FULL TEXT]

From this poor little girl, special request for Santa
(This is a reprint of a previous Christmas column.) When my friend Jack Sallee was with the Jaycees in Fayetteville, they’d put an ad in the paper at Christmastime, saying that for $2 you could have Santa come to your place.[FULL TEXT]

Base could depend on Snyder as real friend
Rep. Vic Snyder, a Democrat who is retiring from Congress at the end of the year, is getting some heat from Republicans for wasting time on the House floor to praise this community’s support of Little Rock Air Force Base. [FULL TEXT]

Panama president
ex-UofA roommate

John Mason, a Jacksonville real estate broker, was in Fayetteville with his wife Ien for homecoming weekend on Oct. 30, when the Razorbacks played Vanderbilt. [FULL TEXT]

Our error given wide circulation
We’ve received lots of calls, comments and complaints over an error in Wednesday’s paper about a Christmas program in Cabot. [FULL TEXT]

Comparing pardons
by governor

Did you see Gov. Beebe’s latest list of pardons? Last week, he announced his intent to pardon a handful of small-time criminals, emphasis on small-time. [FULL TEXT]

POWs recall their
World War ordeal

The former POWs who were shot down over Romania during the Second World War arrived at the Jacksonville Museum of Military History in their tour bus a little after 11 a.m. Thursday. [FULL TEXT]

Annexation plan: Many in area say they're against it
People who live north of Jacksonville near Hwy. 67/167 met at a church Monday evening to fight the city’s plan to annex the area.[FULL TEXT]

Lighthouse plans to build middle and high schools
The headline in Saturday’s Leader: “Cabot schools about to hit 10,000.”[FULL TEXT]

J’Accuse: Smearing
of general

Air Force Gen. John D. Lavelle, who died more than 30 years ago, after he was falsely accused of insubordination, is a four-star general again. [FULL TEXT]

Petraeus salutes
camp liberators

It was 65 years ago Monday that Beryl Wolfson helped liberate the Dachau concentration camp in southeastern Germany.

Marker recalls fire at Twist

There's finally a marker honoring B.B. King in Twist in Cross County, where the great blues singer escaped from a fire at nightclub with his guitar and named it Lucille.

Justice Jim fought tough final battle
Arkansas bloggers were the first with the news of Justice Jim Johnson’s suicide over the weekend. The local TV news on Sunday ignored his passing, probably because no one in the newsroom knew who he was. [FULL TEXT]

Cabot man in raid
on POW camp in 1970
Mst. Sgt. Paul Poole, who helped to liberate Americans from a Vietnamese prison camp, died last week. [FULL TEXT]

Trial could get Muhammad
his death wish

Last June, Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad killed a soldier from Conway and injured another soldier from Jacksonville in front of a recruiting station in Little Rock.

What a little girl asked
from Santa

When my friend Jack Sallee was with the Jaycees in Fayetteville, they'd put an ad in the paper at Christmastime, saying that for $2 you could have Santa come to your place.

Tuskegee legend
at holiday reception

A tall elderly man stood in a far corner in a large banquet room at Little Rock Air Force Base on Sunday afternoon during the holiday reception hosted by the wing commanders.

Gas shut off
as hospital bills pile up

A couple in Beebe have been without heat for several months after the natural-gas company took out their meter because they were not paying their bills.

Huckabee our worst governor?
Who is Arkansas’ worst governor? Is it Orval Faubus, who defied federal authorities i in 1957, when he wouldn’t allow nine black students to attend Central High School in Little Rock? He brought shame and ridicule on the whole state, but at least no one was killed. Or is Mike Huckabee our worst governor ever?



For complete news coverage, buy The Leader today!

Feb. 9, 2011

Reed's Bridge re-inactment
A cameraman records Civil War re-enactors during for the dramatic battle scene of Reed’s Bridge.

Oprah crew films in area
IN SHORT: Millions of television viewers across the nation will soon learn about the Civil War Battle of Reed’s Bridge off Hwy. 161 in Jacksonville. [FULL TEXT]

Weather is going to hit area travel
IN SHORT: Cities prepare for big snow storm by salting and sanding their streets. [FULL TEXT]

District planning to build schools
IN SHORT: Citizens group backs superintendent’s plan for three new schools in Jacksonville area. [FULL TEXT]

Earthquakes from drilling feared
IN SHORT: Disposal of drilling waste into deep wells could be responsible for recent tumblers. [FULL TEXT]

Lonoke’s Clarence Harris (4), Tyrone Dobbins (23) and Lance Jackson (2) are key players in Pulaski Technical’s first season of basketball.

Rare gems in new setting
IN SHORT: Three former Lonoke standouts making most of second chance on new Pulaski Tech team. [FULL TEXT]

Beebe junior beats buzzer with big play, Badgers win
IN SHORT: Forward grabs rebound and puts it back as clock runs out. [FULL TEXT]

Lady Badgers catch up, run away
IN SHORT: Cabot either faces tough, two-night run or will get yet another day to work on its game. [FULL TEXT]

Panthers forecast more practice
IN SHORT: Leading scorer shines but whole team gets into act as Lady Jackrabbits win. [FULL TEXT]

Once a bust, Super Bowl rewards fans
IN SHORT: I had just refreshed my drink and was settling down on the edge of my armchair. [FULL TEXT]



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