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Posts published in “Day: January 8, 2015”

Idaho influentials

ridenbaugh Northwest

Today we're releasing 100 Influential Idahoans 2015 (see the box above) which is about what it says: The 100 most influential Idahoans, at present.

Or, more or less. I make the point in its introduction - though little attention may be paid - that the book essentially is about the sources of influence around Idaho, a suggestion of how things change and happen in the state, more than it is that one person is ranked number 37 and another 38. Although the list is designed to be considered in a rough order - the people toward the top tend to have more sweeping impact than the people toward the bottom - any exact roster in this format is not only subjective but a comparison of the incomparable.

Why do it this way? (Years ago, as I was preparing an earlier version of the list, someone suggested listing the 100 names in alphabetical order.) Simply, people pay a lot more attention to it this way.

And I think there is some usefulness in considering who moves people, who pulls the strings, and so on. If Idaho is of interest to you, you may find it of use too.

Ordering information in the box above.

Children and guns

carlson CHRIS


More years ago than I want to recall I spent a year teaching 8th, 9th and 10th graders at Kootenai Jr.-Sr. High School near Harrison. I was fresh out of college, truly green behind the ears but still look back fondly on the year.

I felt I had a good impact on every student. Equally important though, I learned as much from the students and their parents. especially about the strong sense of community that binds all the residents together. Most of it derives from a shared struggle to make a living in a resource economy under transition.

In small communities no person is an island unto themselves. The shared struggle translates into one extending their sense of family to all their neighbors. Conversely, when any member of this small community dies it hits everyone hard because as the English poet John Donne put it so well five hundred years ago, any one's death and everyone's death diminishes us all.

These thoughts all flooded my mind as I read the tragic news of a two-year-old boy finding his mother's concealed weapon in her purse last week while at the Wal-Mart in Hayden, pulling the trigger and killing his 29-year-old mother.

One just knows that the profound sense of deep grief almost overwhelmed all who heard the sad news. The entire family has to be distraught over Veronica Rutledge's senseless death. A husband will never be the same nor a son.

Mrs. Rutledge came from a well-known and well-liked family, the Hendricks family, who reside in Harrison. Veronica was the valedictorian of her 2004 class. She and all her siblings were described by former Kootenai principal and Harrison Mayor Rich Lund as incredibly bright and all well-liked.

Are there lessons to be learned so that other lives might be saved? I think so.

First, many urban dwellers don't understand why most rural residents own and/or carry weapons. One woman's answer to why she carried was a tart "because I can't carry a policeman around on my back to ensure my protection 24/7."

In urban areas police protection is often just five minutes from the time of the call to 9-1-1. In a rural area it can be well over an hour. I asked two women who carry concealed weapons for thoughts on this tragedy and what could be done to prevent it from happening again. (more…)

On the front pages


Here’s what public affairs news made the front page of newspapers in the Northwest today, excluding local crime, features and sports stories. (Newspaper names contracted with location)

Profilings Resource chair Bair (Boise Statesman, IF Post Register)
State adopts rules on contracting, go to legislators (Boise Statesman, Nampa Press Tribune)
Ammon in search of an identity (IF Post Register)
Idaho fines DOE over missing waste deadlines (IF Post Register)
Nez Perce jail found not liable in suicide (Lewiston Tribune)
Canyon senators look at legislative issues (Nampa Press Tribune)
Height of flu season arriving (Nampa Press Tribune)
Embazzlement charge for former CSI staffer (TF Times News)

Eugene's Piercy delivers state of city (Eugene Register Guard)
RV manufacturer at Coburg ups hiring (Eugene Register Guard)
Klamath send jail tax measure to ballot (KF Herald & News)
OR-7 now considered head of his pack (Medford Tribune, KF Herald & News)
Small growth in Oregon flu cases (Pendleton E Oregonian)
State asks opinions on pot rules (Pendleton E Oregonian)
Fight over chemical depot continues (Pendleton E Oregonian)
Hales plans advisory vote on Portland street fund (Portland Oregonian)
Study puts Oregon at 41 among states in education (Portland Oregonian)
Nostalgia expressed for old PDX carpet (Portland Oregonian)
Oregon ACLU director Fidanque will retire (Salem Statesman Journal)
Protest grows over demolition of Howard Hall (Salem Statesman Journal)

Ace Paving in Bremerton bankrupt (Bremerton Sun)
Bainbridge sees pot shop location fight (Bremerton Sun)
Wyerhaeuser will slice some jobs at Longview (Longview News)
Not much flu activity in area as yet (Yakima Herald Republic, Longview News)
Tumwater brewery sale collapses, but new option emerges (Tacoma News Tribune, Olympian)
Inslee proposes new toxin source regulation (Vancouver Columbian, Olympian)
Yakima clerk, commission at odds on computers (Yakima Herald Republic)