Jul 14 2013

Weekly Briefings

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Sample Idaho Weekly Briefing

Don’t miss the gorilla.

As in the old college psych experiment. Participants were shown a basketball film and asked to count how many times the ball was passed. Many of them did that successfully, but they drew a blank when asked if they saw the man in the gorilla suit who walked casually across the scene in the middle of the film. Every viewer had missed it.

As you try to keep track of what’s happening in your state and community, how much time are you being distracted by the ephemera – the car crashes, house fires, cute animal stories, puffery and the like that contribute nothing to your understanding of what’s going on? More than that: How much of the really important stuff are you missing?

Don’t miss the gorilla.






The Weekly Digest – we publish Idaho, Oregon and Washington editions – keeps your eye on the ball. Drawing from hundreds of sources of information around the Northwest, we distill the critical information, the things you ought to know. We use many original documents and reports as well as our own reporting, giving you an unmatched multi-perspective blend of information.

Digests run 25-35 pages each week, packed with what you need to know about the region.

Our approach is balanced, drawing from a broad range of sources and partisan perspectives, nonpartisan, non-ideological, and neutral. The pdf electronic format also means we can – and do – include loads of hot links giving you access to much more information about the scores of topics covered each week.

For about $1 a week, we cover the waterfront for you.

You can reach us at:
Randy Stapilus
[email protected]
Ridenbaugh Press
P.O. Box 834
Carlton OR 97111
phone (208) 484-0460
or (503) 852-0010

We follow the key political races and developments. At any given time, you’re up to date with who’s running, what kind of money they’re raising and what they’re up to.

We watch the congressional delegation, track what they’re saying and doing – and watch the fedeeral agencies and their activities in-state as well.

We keep tabs on state government, on the legislature and even on those administrative regulations no one else reports on.

And local government as well, of course.

The legal system gets a look over in every weekly issue, including state Supreme Court and other key court decisions – including central excerpts, so you get an idea of what’s at stake and what the judicial logic is.

Business and the economy getys a close look in every issue, scanning business and economic changes large and small, down to changes in stock prices – and even the high and low gasoline prices in the state, every week.

Environmental, health, social and cultural developments are all noted as well – including some recurring perspective you might not expect.

We let you know who’s coming and going in our section on People.

And our detailed state Calendar lets you know what’s coming up in public affairs.

Throughout, our goal is get to you

We started back in 1990 as a tracer of Idaho state administrative regulations, but as you can tell we’ve expanded a great deal since then. Oregon and Washington editions were added about a decade later.

We’ve been doing this a while. In 2010 we moved from a monthly print publication to weekly digital delivery, arriving in subscribers’ email early every Monday morning (or, to be more precise, late Sunday night).

Randy Stapilus, a veteran of writing about government, politics, economics and the Northwest generally since the mid-70s – currently a columnist for a string of daily newspapers in the region – has been the editor since the beginning.

Like what you see?

Tap the Paypal button and we’ll get your subscription started immediately – and the next Weekly Briefing will be in your mail box next Monday morning.

And our money back guarantee: Cancel at any time and we’ll refund you for all unsent issues.

Don’t let another week go by to get properly informed. Start your subscription today.

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WASHINGTON-OREGON-IDAHO Our acclaimed weekly e-pubs: 35-45 pages Monday mornings getting you on top of your state. Samples available. Contact us by email or by phone at (208)484-0460.



This will be one of the most talked-about Idaho books in Idaho this season: 14 years after its last edition, Ridenbaugh Press has released a list of 100 influential Idahoans. Randy Stapilus, the editor and publisher of the Idaho Weekly Briefing and author of four earlier similar lists, has based this one on levels of overall influence in the state – and freedom of action and ability to influence development of the state – as of the start of 2015.
100 Influential Idahoans 2015. By Randy Stapilus; published by Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 202 pages. Softcover. List price $16.95.
100 Influential Idahoans 2015 page.

100 Influential Idahoans 2015
"Essentially, I write in the margins of motherhood—and everything else—then I work these notes into a monthly column about what it’s like raising my two young boys. Are my columns funny? Are they serious? They don’t fit into any one box neatly. ... I’ve won awards for “best humorous column” though I actually write about subjects as light as bulimia, bullying, birthing plans and breastfeeding. But also bon-bons. And barf, and birthdays." Raising the Hardy Boys: They Said There Would Be Bon-Bons. by Nathalie Hardy; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 238 pages. Softcover. $15.95.
Raising the Hardy Boys page.



"Not a day passes that I don’t think about Vietnam. Sometimes its an aroma or just hearing the Vietnamese accent of a store clerk that triggers a memory. Unlike all too many soldiers, I never had to fire a weapon in anger. Return to civilian life was easy, but even after all these years away from the Army and Vietnam I find the experience – and knowledge – continue to shape my life daily."
Drafted! Vietnam in War and in Peace. by David R. Frazier; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton OR. 188 pgs. Softcover. $15.95.
The DRAFTED! page.


Many critics said it could not be done - and it often almost came undone. Now the Snake River Basin Adjudication is done, and that improbable story is told here by three dozen of the people most centrally involved with it - judges, attorneys, legislators, engineers, water managers, water users and others in the room when the decisions were made.
Through the Waters: An Oral History of the Snake River Basin Adjudication. edited by the Idaho State Bar Water Law Section and Randy Stapilus; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 300 pages. Softcover. $16.95.

Oregon Governor Vic Atiyeh died on July 20, 2014; he was widely praised for steady leadership in difficult years. Writer Scott Jorgensen talks with Atiyeh and traces his background, and what others said about him.
Conversations with Atiyeh. by W. Scott Jorgensen; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 140 pages. Softcover. $14.95.

"Salvation through public service and the purging of awful sights seen during 1500 Vietnam War helicopter rescue missions before an untimely death, as told by a devoted brother, leaves a reader pondering life's unfairness. A haunting read." Chris Carlson, Medimont Reflections. ". . . a vivid picture of his brother Jerry’s time as a Medivac pilot in Vietnam and contrasts it with the reality of the political system . . . through the lens of a blue-collar, working man made good." Mike Kennedy.
One Flaming Hour: A memoir of Jerry Blackbird. by Mike Blackbird; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 220 pages. Softcover. $15.95.
See the ONE FLAMING HOUR page.

Back in Print! Frank Church was one of the leading figures in Idaho history, and one of the most important U.S. senators of the last century. From wilderness to Vietnam to investigating the CIA, Church led on a host of difficult issues. This, the one serious biography of Church originally published in 1994, is back in print by Ridenbaugh Press.
Fighting the Odds: The Life of Senator Frank Church. LeRoy Ashby and Rod Gramer; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 800 pages. Softcover. $24.95.


by Stephen Hartgen
The personal story of the well-known editor, publisher and state legislator's travel west from Maine to Idaho. A well-written account for anyone interested in Idaho, journalism or politics.
JOURNEY WEST: A memoir of journalism and politics, by Stephen Hartgen; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. $15.95, here or at Amazon.com (softcover)



NEW EDITIONS is the story of the Northwest's 226 general-circulation newspapers and where your newspaper is headed.
New Editions: The Northwest's Newspapers as They Were, Are and Will Be. Steve Bagwell and Randy Stapilus; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. 324 pages. Softcover. (e-book ahead). $16.95.
See the NEW EDITIONS page.

How many copies?


The Field Guide is the reference for the year on Oregon politics - the people, the districts, the votes, the issues. Compiled by a long-time Northwest political writer and a Salem Statesman-Journal political reporter.
OREGON POLITICAL FIELD GUIDE 2014, by Randy Stapilus and Hannah Hoffman; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. $15.95, available right here or through Amazon.com (softcover)


by Randy Stapilus and Marty Trillhaase is the reference for the year on Idaho Politics - the people, the districts, the votes, the issues. Written by two of Idaho's most veteran politcal observers.
IDAHO POLITICAL FIELD GUIDE 2014, by Randy Stapilus and Marty Trillhaase; Ridenbaugh Press, Carlton, Oregon. $15.95, available right here or through Amazon.com (softcover)

without compromise
WITHOUT COMPROMISE is the story of the Idaho State Police, from barely-functioning motor vehicles and hardly-there roads to computer and biotechnology. Kelly Kast has spent years researching the history and interviewing scores of current and former state police, and has emerged with a detailed and engrossing story of Idaho.


How many copies?
The Old West saw few murder trials more spectacular or misunderstood than of "Diamondfield" Jack Davis. After years of brushes with the noose, Davis was pardoned - though many continued to believe him guilty. Max Black has spent years researching the Diamondfield saga and found startling new evidence never before uncovered - including the weapon and one of the bullets involved in the crime, and important documents - and now sets out the definitive story. Here too is Black's story - how he found key elements, presumed lost forever, of a fabulous Old West story.
See the DIAMONDFIELD page for more.

Medimont Reflections Chris Carlson's Medimont Reflections is a followup on his biography of former Idaho Governor Cecil Andrus. This one expands the view, bringing in Carlson's take on Idaho politics, the Northwest energy planning council, environmental issues and much more. The Idaho Statesman: "a pull-back-the-curtain account of his 40 years as a player in public life in Idaho." Available here: $15.95 plus shipping.
See the Medimont Reflections page  
Idaho 100, about the 100 most influential people ever in Idaho, by Randy Stapilus and Martin Peterson is now available. This is the book about to become the talk of the state - who really made Idaho the way it is? NOW AN E-BOOK AVAILABLE THROUGH KINDLE for just $2.99. Or, only $15.95 plus shipping.

Idaho 100 by Randy Stapilus and Martin Peterson. Order the Kindle at Amazon.com. For the print edition, order here or at Amazon.