The Forward Five – Monday, 10/26/20

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Five Things to Know Today

— Publisher’s Note —

Good morning! Here’s a quandary for you: If you were the publisher of an online site, would you rather have readers, email subscribers, or paying members?

It’s an ongoing balancing act, especially if you have ads on the site. (We don’t currently, but may start.)

  • Businesses buying ads want eyeballs on their ads, so lots of readers is good.
  • Email subscribers are more engaged with the site, and may wind up becoming paying members.
  • And of course, paying members are the ones who keep it all going through their financial commitment.

One of the ways you get people to become paying members is to put up some sort of paywall, either hard (you can’t read anything until you become a member), or metered (you can read a certain number of articles per month before you have to become a member to read any more).

We had a metered paywall until April, when we took it down during the pandemic. Guess what happened?

  • Our readership went up. It has doubled since the spring.
  • Our rate of new members went down and down. In fact, this month we have had just one. (Yep – 1)

So, I’m kicking around putting the metered paywall back up. Not sure about the details (how many stories per month, whether to paywall all stories or just original, and so on). But, as much as I enjoy doing this (and I do), we have to have a firm financial foundation, and paying members are that foundation.

Glad to hear any feedback you might have. And of course, if you enjoy reading lots of content on the site, becoming a paying member would mean you don’t have to worry about whatever I decide. <g>

Take care. Wear a mask. And be sure to VOTE!

Bruce Maples, publisher
(Send feedback  ●  Send tips  ●  Submit your events)

Today’s Five Things to Know

Weekend COVID updates

10/23 update — Week already deadliest, with a day to go; Beshear says his experience shows masks work

Kentucky recorded 1,457 new cases Friday, the second highest daily total. That pushed the seven-day rolling average to 1,191, the highest yet, and 29 above yesterday, the previous record. (Forward Kentucky)

10/24 update — New cases hit another record; Beshear calls it ‘frightening’

Hospitalizations also set a record, at 840, including 208 in intensive care and 107 of those on ventilators. And the percentage of Kentuckians testing positive for the virus jumped again, to 5.63%. (Forward Kentucky)

10/25 update – Worst-ever Sunday makes for worst week yet as escalation steepens; hospitalizations remain high

1,462 new cases of the novel coronavirus, the most of any Sunday, and a record number of COVID-19 hospitalizations, with 231 of those patients in intensive case and 106 of them on ventilators. (Forward Kentucky)

Beshear leaves quarantine, says mask kept him safe

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear has left quarantine two weeks after being exposed to COVID-19 by a member of his security detail. In a Facebook post on Saturday morning, Beshear said, “As of today I am officially out of quarantine after following the advice of the department for public health. We have tested negative for COVID-19 multiple times, which I contribute to the fact we were wearing masks at the time of contact. Thank you to all who have sent supportive messages. We are very blessed. (West KY Star)

Pence’s chief of staff has the coronavirus. Pence will continue to campaign Marc Short, the chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence, tested positive for the coronavirus on Saturday, making him the closest aide to Pence and the latest senior White House official to contract the virus. The confirmation comes as Pence — who tested negative on Saturday — criss-crosses the country for rallies in swing states in the remaining days of the campaign as he and President Trump fight to win reelection. (WFPL)

  What’s on the line if SCOTUS overturns Obamacare? Only the livelihoods and lives of KentuckiansIf the Supreme Court, likely including Amy Coney Barrett, rules in favor of dismantling the ACA, the imminent threats to millions of Kentuckians’ well-being and quality of life are clear. (Forward Kentucky)

  Protest at Daniel Cameron’s house ends without arrestsDozens of protesters gathered in front of Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s house Saturday night in suburban Louisville. They were calling on Cameron to resign over his decision not to recommend any charges for the death of Breonna Taylor. Police in riot gear confronted protesters, but there were no arrests. “Tonight’s occupation went great,” protester Israel McCullough said. “No arrests. It’s remarkable.” (WFPL)

  Think we’re “turning the corner”? Look at these maps.A Daily Kos reader provided these week-by-week maps of COVID spread across the country, plus a map showing mask wearing by county. Think we’re turning a corner? Look at these maps. (Forward Kentucky)

Upcoming Events from the ForwardKY Calendar

We post about upcoming events by campaigns and organizations if we know about them in time. Post your events here. View the full calendar here. All times Eastern unless otherwise noted.

Today (10/26)


7:00 pm – 8:00 pm – Online Show – Info

Tuesday (10/27)


1:00 pm – 7:00 pm – Virtual Action – Info


1:00 pm – In-person and Live-streamed – Info

Thursday (10/29)


4:00 pm – 6:00 pm – Virtual action – Info


5:30 pm – 7:30 pm – Virtual Action – Info

Saturday (10/31)


3:00 pm – 4:30 pm – In-person Action in Lexington – Info

Sunday (11/1)


2:00 pm – In-person Campaigning in Louisville – Info


8:00 pm – 9:00 pm – Online Forum – Info

Recent Content on Forward Kentucky

[new] indicates item not in a Forward Five before
* indicates high # of reads, social media shares, or both

[new] Whose privacy is the University of Kentucky trying to protect? – Ultimately, “University of Kentucky v The Kernel Press” will decide whether a public university can evade accountability for its actions by erecting an impenetrable privacy smoke screen. (Commentary)

[new] Josh Hicks hits the hustings – Josh Hicks, Dem candidate for the U.S. House, was on the hustings this past week, working hard to win the seat from Andy Barr. Nick Lacy was at two of the events and captured these photos to share. (Photo Gallery)

[new] The JCPS Tax Increase – Here we are, less than two weeks till Election Day, and in Louisville there is a ballot initiative to stop a school tax increase. Join us for a discussion with Gay Adelmann and Denita Wright about all things JCPS Tax Increase. (Video/Podcast)

[new] Fact check: Are we really “rounding the corner” when it comes to the coronavirus pandemic? – “We’re rounding the turn,” Trump said during the debate. This implies a meaningful improvement. We rate this claim as false. (Fact Check)

[new] * Captain ‘Sully’ Sullenberger endorses Amy McGrath in U.S. Senate race – Captain “Sully” Sullenberger, a national hero who landed US Airways Flight 1549 on the Hudson River after both engines were disabled, today endorsed Lt. Col. Amy McGrath in the Senate race in Kentucky. (Press Release)

[new] KY Alliance for Retired Americans endorses McGrath – Election Day is just 11 days away, and we wanted to make sure you know that the Alliance for Retired Americans has proudly endorsed Amy McGrath for election to the U.S. Senate. (Press Release)

Right Now — Watch this video, then share it. – I was sent this via Twitter, and was blown away when I watched it. I think you will be too. (Video)

*Ball goes after Beshear; the KDP goes after Ball – State Treasurer Allison Ball has announced an investigation of Governor Beshear’s use of funds to fight the virus. The KY Democratic Party responds to Ball’s actions. (Commentary)

Why haven’t these candidates filed their financial reports? – Out of around 200 candidates running for the state legislature, how many would you guess have failed to file one or more of their campaign finance reports? How about over 30? (News)

*Can Amy McGrath stop Mitch’s laughter? – Rev. William Barber on McConnell’s laugh about COVID deaths: “One of the most damnable forms of ‘I’m so sick with the lust for power that I just don’t care.’” (Commentary)

Across the U.S., rural counties are driving the virus – Here’s the weekly update from The Daily Yonder, showing just how bad the coronavirus is in rural counties across the United States. (News)

Mitch’s scary ads – What do Mitch McConnell’s ads remind you of? Cartoonist Aaron Smith thinks that Amy McGrath has the right idea. (Cartoon)

DemCast is an advocacy-based 501(c)4 nonprofit. We have made the decision to build a media site free of outside influence. There are no ads. We do not get paid for clicks. If you appreciate our content, please consider a small monthly donation.

Forward Kentucky is an independent media organization focused on progressive news and issues in Kentucky. Our objectives are to provide journalism that is objective, policies that are effective, and commentary that is progressive. Our goal is to help Kentucky become all that it can be through government that works, for all. We are "the progressive voice for Kentucky politics."

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