Monday, December 21, 2009

The End Of An Era

Since the death of the widely respected partner in ownership, Jerry Berry, along with previous partner, Jim Campbell, the future of the Captain's Wheel Restaurant has been in question. Widowed Carletta Berry wanted to take over and silent partner, Michael McFarland, based on advice of his mentor, Jerry, chose to rise from silent partner to CEO. Those issues are to be decided in court sometime in January.

What can't be adjudicated in court, is the dismantling of the local infrastructure. As developers flocked to Bayview a few years ago, it became obvious that at least some of the investors wanted to transport this lazy backwater into a mecca for wealthy summer water sports enthusiasts. Unfortunately this included the task of getting rid of long time residents, some, third and even fourth generation. Situated 8 miles from the main highway, (hwy95) Bayview sits at the foot of Farragut State Park.

First, the town trailer park, often referred to as an eyesore, was purchased and razed. This purchase was engineered by Bob Holland , currently owner of the Vista Bay Marina, The previously know as Bayview Marina, and now called Harborview, and then Boileau's Marina, which included the patio and the Buttonhook.

The trailer park property was subsequently sold to James Darling, of WSU and NFL fame as a linebacker. Darling came into the community knowing that his predecessor, Holland, had stepped on many toes and wanted to avoid that. He worked assiduously to heal community breaches ,and is continuously trying to balance his interests with the community.Currently, he is building the first of three phases, involving about 32 condo units.

The former RV park at Boileaus' was turned into a parking lot to satisfy parking requirements for other Holland enterprises. The Bayview Motel was sold to a former NBA basketball player, about the same time. Not wanting to be subject to motel taxes and regulations, he turned that project into monthly rentals.That project has crashed since with the current economy, only about four units are rented. We now have less than half of the temporary RV and tent capacity for tourist than a few years ago.

This brings us to there present condition. The local economy has tubed. Many permanent residents have moved away, leaving a shell for the winter months. New condo projects probably will not help, as most will be purchased as second or vacation homes. The Buttonhook Restaurant has closed, with an opening date up in the air. Terry's Cafe, owned by Chan of Scenic Bay Marina, may reopen soon for breakfast and lunches. The patio, now leased from Chan by Scott & Jeanne Bjerge, has stayed open much later in the year, due to other closures, and will stay open throughout the Winter season. The hours of operation at the Patio will be 11:00 am to 7:00 pm.Cocktails are available at the Patio.There is still a possibility of the former Terry's Cafe opening soon, as lights are on again and remodeling is in progress.

Today, we morn one more stake in the heart of Bayview. Losing hundreds of dollars per month trying to stay open during the slow months, the Captain's Wheel is throwing in the towel for, at least the next two months. The last days of this drama will play out after January 3, when the lights will dim over the most stable full service restaurant & bar that has existed since 1996. The possibly last hurrah of the 'Wheel will be New Years Eve, with the ever popular, "The Keep" playing for your listening pleasure.

Left open, will be the JD's, a bar and the patio, along with Ralph's internet cafe, which along with the patio brings snacks to the table, but puts Bayview into a category of not having a sit down restaurant in operation during this winter season.

Asked why this was necessary, Captain's wheel management just sighed and said, " There are either not enough people living here during the winter season, or due to the economy, choose not to eat out. Either way, we can't keep on losing money where the bottomless pit equals the total loss of equity and bankruptcy.

Folks, It's going to be a long winter. The hopes and prayers of local residents continue to come up negative, as the cards are turning up as a pair of deuces.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Merry Christmas

Today marks the seventh day before Christmas. Since the beginning of our country, we have, one way or the other, celebrated Christmas, as a national holiday. certainly, other religions should and are respected. Hanukkah, the Jewish holiday celebrating the re-dedication of the temple of Jerusalem hits right smack in the middle of the Christmas holiday, and lasts for 8 days. Most of us respect them also, if for no other reason, than that Jesus was a Jew as were all that came before him in the Christian tradition.

Next Friday, we celebrate, as we do every year, the birth of Christ. Now we know that the actual date of his birth is up for grabs, as records of the day were sketchy and inaccurate. But that doesn't matter. This date will do just fine, as nitpicking over the day and week tend to overshadow the reason we celebrate. Many feel that without Christianity or at least Judism, we would not have the moral compass that leads most of us. The ten commandments were valid then and are still valid to the point of becoming law in many countries. I'm pretty much with it on most of those commandments, except for occasionally coveting my neighbor's wife, but hey, no follow through, right?

One of the most satisfying parts of the holiday season is that it brings out generosity from those that perhaps don't feel that the rest of the year. Food banks need our help, especially this year with so many unemployed. Relatives that we haven't spoken to for months seem just that much closer.

I want to end this by wishing each and every one of you a very Merry Christmas, a happy Hanukkah, and to those that worship Buddha and other more eastern religions, peace be upon you and yours. Please click on the link below for a Christmas greeting from me. Well, I wasn't able to set up the link, but if you copy and paste it you get there. (back to the drawing board)When you access this site, click on view gallery, then click on 2004 admissions greetings, then enjoy.>

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Global Warming A Hoax?

Mt Erebus South Pole

As we watch the conference on global warming come apart at the seams in Copenhagen, perhaps it is time to stop being defensive when ridiculed by the liberal media and like minded scientists. Unusually, there doesn't seem to be an honest debate between those that believe and those that do not. Virtually all scientific theories are argued over and over by the experts. That didn't happen here. The cart is pulling the horse in this case.

It was only after a hacker opened up a Pandora's box of lies and deceits in a Watergate type expose in Great Britain has the playing field started to level. Suddenly there are dozens of renown scientists including some highly touted researchers that chose up until now to keep their collective mouths shut so as to not be publicly discredited by the massive propaganda campaign. Nobody was bothered by those that shut down debate by saying, "hey that has already been irrefutably settled. We don't need to go there anymore."

One reason that has been put forth is that the green earth radicals see this as a route to much more political power that they enjoy as a fringe group. That can be debated by others, but it is clear to me that a vast intimidation campaign is under way to railroad us into more and more government control. Not just our government, but the United Nations as well. It is time for thoughtful research, not knee jerk politics. Below is a link that I suggest any person interested in this debate should visit. It is from a European study. Apparently their experts aren't as easily cowed by the political side. (Hat tip to Bent for the lead)

Friday, December 11, 2009

Civility Is Gone

I have finally decided that the current crop of adults, and I use that term very loosely, cannot seem to disagree politically without throwing insults, sarcasm and examples of why the person that they disagree with is a moron. In doing this they also fail to address the very subject being discussed. apparently, form is considered better than substance.

Why these miscreants do this is beyond me unless they would just rather throw out cute remarks without needing to lower themselves to an actual debate on issues.Name calling isn't just limited to ultra liberals, though I sense that there are more of them than conservatives. Most conservatives, even those that are so far aright that they need bleacher seats, seldom go out of their way to insult their detractors. Actually they find ignoring them is just as effective. Some tend to be very pompous though.

Talk Radio hosts are in the business of making money. Hey, it is a profession. Show business.I once had a job as a talk radio host, but I didn't get into the personality parade that exists now. People put down the three or four conservative shows, but the fact that more liberal productions don't get enough action to warrant advertisers spending money on them. One even had to run for political office in order to make a living. This would appear to mean that they great unwashed as eastern liberals would say, the common man or woman are far more conservative that the eastern establishment would like to see. Especially out here in the west.

Unfortunately, we here in Idaho are beset with extremists on both sides. It reminds me of a 70's song. "Clowns to the left, Jokers to the right, Here I am stuck in the middle with you." That about sums it up. somehow, the Republican Party and the Democrat party need to swing closer to the middle. Right now, even in the Senate, we have centuries of tradition thrown out for partisan debate.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Teabagging as a Pejorative Term

I have never in the past done this, meaning copied and pasted stuff that in the history of the Huckleberries blog is frowned upon. Still, I feel strongly that the MSN including senior editors of the Spokesman-Review, who tend to be very liberal have blessed the use of this horrible term that is definitely pejorative in a sexual context to conservatives. I don't always follow the conservative party line when it gets to far right, but this is unacceptable. Period.

Teabagging is a slang term for the act of a man placing his scrotum in the mouth[1] or on or around the face (including the top of the head) of another person, often in a repeated in-and-out motion as in irrumatio. The practice resembles dipping a tea bag into a cup of tea.[2][3]
The practice

Teabagging is an activity used within the context of owning trents dome BDSM and male dominance, with a dominant man teabagging his submissive partner as one variation of facesitting and/or as a means of inflicting erotic humiliation. Teabagging is not always carried out with a solely “sexual” connotation.

Teabagging has been used during hazing or bullying incidents.[4] Incidents have included reports of groups holding down victims while the perpetrator “shoves his testicles in [their] face”[5] or puts their “crotch to his head.”[6]

Mimicking teabagging has become popular in online video games. It is portrayed by the winning player positioning his character over the fallen character's face (while repeatedly crouching and standing) to imply domination or humiliation.[6]
[edit] Use as a political term
Main article: Tea Party protests

In 2009, groups known as Tea Parties were formed to protest United States government tax and spending policies. Media outlets began to use the term 'Teabaggers' as a criticism of the entire Tea Party movement, making use of language and accoutrement employed by some of its members.[7][8] An article in by Alex Koppelman traced the controversy to a photograph by David Weigel posted on The Washington Independent website on 27 February,[9] showing a protester holding a sign that read “Tea Bag the Liberal Dems Before They Tea Bag You!!”[10] Weigel's report was referenced by bloggers, including Wonkette, who used “teabagging” or “teabagger” in their headline.[9] Several critics of the protesters, including Rachel Maddow, Keith Olbermann, Chris Matthews, and Anderson Cooper, used the slang in their broadcasts. Cooper later apologized, calling the term “silly” and stating that his use of it detracted from his serious reporting.[11][12][13][14][15]

It would appear that MSM liberal editors have blessed the use of this dirty term in obeisance to their liberal following. I do not believe that repeated use of a dirty word or term legitimatizes it. Certainly other words that are in common use on the streets are prohibited on spokesman-Review blogs. It is apparent to me that this one sided morality is wrong, wrong, wrong!

When Government Oversteps It's Authority ...Again

For many years the mission of the Corps of Engineers was to regulate navigable waterways. The original intent was primarily the Mississippi,Missouri and Ohio rivers, for both flood control and navigation. toward that goal, locks were emplaced at necessary points to aid the up river and down river commerce. These rivers were and are navigable because they can be used all the way to the ocean for marine traffic.

Then somehow, the corps got too big for their collective britches and decided that THEY would determine what was navigable and what was not. The most obvious transgressions are out west, where rivers that may support a canoe for brief journeys, dammed rivers that cannot be navigated, even by fish and other egregious mis-applications of the terminology.

To state that the Corps transgresses upon the states rights that they regulate, as well as rule the power grid through the measured feeding of water from dam to dam, as needed for power generation, is treating the subject lightly. They have gone so far beyond the original intent of their purview as to be ridiculous. The situation is obvious. We, residents of the various western states need to wrest control from these power hungry federal abusers. One method would be to sue in federal court, asking the court to find that the Corps has overstepped their mandate. Another, would be to get congress to redefine what constitutes a navagable waterway.

Here on 50 mile long Lake Pend Oreille, the corps is attempting once again, to manipulate the levels through their ownership of the Albeni Falls Dam without regard to the fact that this lake is not a man made reservoir, but a natural body of water. Our lake has been trashed by the lack of regard to our fisheries and lakefront properties. They seem to feel that we exist for the sole purpose of supplying water to Grand Coulee Dam and other such structures down stream.

There are adequate dams down stream from Lake Pend Oreille to hold summer water through the winter power use cycles without misusing our lake. During the few years where a moratorium was in force and the corps was only allowed to lower the lake to 2051 feet above sea level every three years, and to maintain a Summer level of 2062, with 2055 being the odd years winter level. The mighty Corps of Engineers has unilaterally decided they essentially will in the future do what they damn well please. This is wrong and the State of Idaho needs to pull them up short, if the various interested bureaucrats can manage to extract their collective heads from their ... rears.
For more of my ramblings go to:Bayviews

Road Trip From Hell

Today I trekked to the big city. No, not Rathdrum or even Coeur d'Alene. I went for the whole hog and drove to the land of red light busters, choked freeways and crime waves, and that's just Spokane city officials, according to Clark. Actually, it wasn't too bad. The route I took avoided the infamous pot holes, which is good because I experience many of those where I live here in Bayview. Really, the only bad part of the trip was getting out of the car. That it was cold is an understatement. Bone-chilling, paralyzing cold.

I took the trip anyway. You see, I have three beautiful young granddaughters that were in a Christmas Pageant at Northwest Christian School in the North End. It was great entertainment. all three were in different grade levels and had parts based on their class. On top of the fact that I have these three beauties as grandchildren, my son is a teacher there, (4Th grade) and my daughter-in-law is a substitute teacher at the school. So son was herding the fourth grade class while his wife, Jennifer was trying to keep order in the third grade class, which she subbed for today. She needed a whip and chair. The kids didn't get outside recess due to the cold, so they saved all of their pent up energy for the evening events. Still, when it was their turn to head for the stage, they settled right down, like great troupers that they were.

I didn't see Cindy Hval there, but I strongly suspect she was out stalking her 15 year old son's Health teacher. (If you don't follow Huckleberries on line this doesn't make sense, but then much that I write doesn't anyway. Inside joke.)

Had to stop for gas. It couldn't happen when it was warm, no. I had to get out of the car, stick the hose in the tank and hope my hand wouldn't freeze to it. Made it home OK. did I mention that I stopped for groceries on the way to Spokane? It's the first time I have ever had to unload the car to assure that I wouldn't ruin some of the food I'd bought. Usually that is a Summer thing. I could see the rolls of biscuits freezing and popping open, causing me to bake all night long, but no, everything worked out fine. In a year or two, I may venture to the big city again, but only under duress, or that of my grand kids. I don't plan on poking my head out until at least March.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Political Correctness Gone Extreme

Political correctness, long fostered by the main stream media, has reached a point of no return, apparently. The list of rearranged social and political standards is a long one, but today I just want to talk about one area.

As we all know, a tragedy struck a few days ago, when an army major,a Moslem, shot and killed thirteen people and injured thirty-one more. H did this while screaming Allahu Akbar. A a term much used by Islamic Terrorists. Yet, the media, with the exception of Cal Thomas, is afraid to tell it like it is. Everyone from Army Generals, down to beat reporters, sail gently around the subject of this, a terrorist act, as if it would condemn all of the Moslems in service as well. The above term in Arabic means, "God Is Great." Talk about misusing terminology.

We are now hearing reports of and from colleges in the medical world that this thug regularly spouted anti-American and pro Islamic slogans. None of his superiors were brave enough to risk the thought police by either disciplining him, or even throwing him out of the Army.

To quote an old saying, "it is time to call a spade a shovel." It is also time to bring sense into law enforcement. Profiling is now against the rules. Now I'm not talking about the arresting of a black person on the charge of "driving while black, or yellow, or pink or any other extreme use of that tool. What I am saying, is we better start watching those members of a religion that proposes the violent overthrow oof the United states. While certainly, not all people that worship as Islamic are not terrorists, it is reasonable to suspect that most will come from that group.

I start to worry, when general officers are so afraid of offending a minority, that they will excuse clues to what eventually transpired at Fort Hood, and will certainly happen again and again unless an effort is made to sort through the ranks and get rid of people that can't even pass a routine security Clearance. Now the Army, still embarrassed, rather than calling this a terrorist act, is going to prosecute the perpetrator as a simple murder. What a gutsy call.

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Tragedy Of The Saddle-up Cafe

photo by Kathy Plonka, Spokesman-Review

It was a crisp winter night in Athol. The Saddle Up Grill had closed for the night. Owner Howard White was in a hurry to get home to Post Falls. It was his and wife Suz’s 13th wedding anniversary. Normally, with the couple working 16-hour days, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, they stayed in a motor home behind the restaurant. Due to sewage disposal problems, they had to quit doing that for a while. Howard would sleep in the Saddle Up Grill, so that he would have an early start at prepping for breakfast.

Howard closed, locked the doors and headed home for a date with his bride. It was Dec. 17, 2008, just a little short of two years in operation. About 4 a.m., a fire broke out in the dining room, probably caused by a space heater too close to upholstery. Timberlake Fire District, just a few blocks down the street, answered the call quickly and limited damage to the dining areas, saving the kitchen, except for severe smoke damage.

At the opening in March 2007, a lifelong dream was realized as Howie and Suz cranked out the first of many succulent smoked prime rib sandwiches, slathered with Suz’s secret barbecue sauce, along with what Howie called the world’s biggest and best burger. Twelve ounces of choice ground beef surrounded by all the fixings. Out back is a 500-gallon smoker, where they turn out their food from scratch along with their made-from-scratch barbecue ranch-style beans.

There is little doubt that had Howard White stayed that night in the restaurant, as he normally did, he would have been overcome by smoke and killed. The date with his wife probably saved his life.

Armed with an insurance policy, the couple figured a few months to rebuild, then back at it. This is when things started to come unwound. They bought this historic building, first used to house recruits headed for Farragut Naval training base. When a train with recruits came in late in the evening, they were put up in the bunkhouse. Many years later, it became the Saddle Up Inn. It was an owner contract, with title still residing with the previous owner. When the insurance company paid off, it paid the loan off. That left the Whites with a small amount of cash and a paid-in-full deed to a commercial lot and a half-burned building.

Today the Whites are without an income, or a restaurant without a loan to rebuild. Howard White’s one thought was, “Why, with the billions of dollars the federal government has thrown at the banks to stimulate the economy, don’t the banks then use the money for that purpose, instead of socking it away to protect themselves from bad loans?”

The Whites are hard-working people who enjoyed working 16-hour days to make what was once a dream come true. Now, it has turned into a nightmare. They are looking for help.

Help either in the form of donations, which can be sent to P.O. Box 16, Athol, Idaho 83801. Or the best solution, White hopes, is for a lender to step up with an SBA loan putting him and his wife back to serving smoked prime rib dinners.

Reprinted from my story in Sunday's spokesman-Review.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Profiling, A great Tool

Much social mush has been printed about racial and ethic profiling. It is with great trepidation that I re-examine this ridiculous phenomenon. What has happened here, goes way beyond the driving while black or Hispanic or what ever.

This social miscue has spread to law enforcement and even our Customs and Immigration officials. Well, if middle east madmen are attacking us, don't you think it would be wise to try to identify or at least limit the list of suspects to those that resemble middle eastern types? Or perhaps it would be better to pick out anglo-saxon grandmothers, forcing them to go through the same examination process as those flying in from the middle east.

As long as we regale the progressive and kill off the efforts of our law enforcement organizations, we are not going to win. We are simply giving in to the terrorists.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Close Races

Wow! If anyone still believes that their vote doesn't matter, check out the Coeur d'Alene city council races. Kennedy wins by 5 votes. That is just about as close as you can get. Considering the low voter turnout, it could have been much different if more registered voters had turned out. Goodlander only won by 29 votes. The mayors of Coeur d'Alene and Post Falls glided to easy victories, as it appears voters are happy with their leadership.

The Kootenai county Bond Issue and Sales tax bump both sent down to defeat. In the case of the sales tax, the yes vote cleared 50% but was unable to reach the super majority required for spending issues.

Timberlake Fire District voted in two new commissioners. Rudy Rudebaugh and Monty Fish handily won their election over a Sagle Firefighter and wife of one. With fire safety codes the burning issue, the new commission will have to face either granting waivers for updating fire suppression hoods or close down all but one restaurant in the Bayview/Athol area, and even some at Silverwood. At least five do not comply, primarily because they predate the newer codes.

Much controversy has occurred somewhat unnecessarily about a proposed levy. Essentially, the fire rating people have done their annual inspection of the fire district and the score came up short for retaining current homeowners and fire insurance rates. This will be appealed, but several factors enter into the problem. First, Timberlake has several satellite stations that are unmanned, but have at least one engine in it. This allows people that have businesses or homes within a five mile radius a cheaper rate. One such station has been temporarily abandoned due to an old 1972 engine having to be retired. That station is the one at the traffic circle at the entrance to Farragut, on Perimeter Road.

What is at stake, is that without bringing the fire district up to snuff rquipment and personnel wise, the average homeowner is going to be paying over $150 per year more for insurance. The alternative, is passing a permanent levy for the purpose of modernizing, which would cost around $100 per year more in taxes.Either way, you'll pay more. Detailed information is available at

Work is proceeding quickly on the James Darling project in Bayview. Unfortunately, Fanny Mae and FHA have recently severely tightened loan occupancy requirements, forcing Darling to ask the county for relief in the form of a zoning change. It's a rock and a hard spot for Darling, who has bent over backward to cooperate with townspeople.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Wider Territory

I have started this blog, because I wanted to enlarge the area that I cover. Bayviews, started as a community information center, and still is. But having said that, it limits me to local issues. Two things that I wanted to do,one, to cover news and opinion for all of North Idaho, and two, to commercialize my blogs.

In the past four years, during which I have wrote over 98,000 page views, I have written this blog for entertainment. Since the Spokesman-Review has cut back severely, I have lost over $600 per month in income. I believe that I can deliver enough readers to this new area wide blog, to make up for the loss in the Bayviews blog. All of those ads that are currently shown on Bayviews, will appear also on Kootenai Country. The hope is that we as a team can give a new news source to North Idaho, as well as it being self supporting. Please wish us well, and if you have an ad you wish to have on this blog, they will be inexpensive, but effective.