Wednesday, December 31
I believe that this is an appropriate action that has been taken by the FAA. One mistake in a year can be blamed on an accident, but two starts heading into a much grayer territory. Just one more reason to not include skydiving in my list of things to do in 2009.
I know we have at least a couple of Arkansas Razorbacks fans who follow the blog and since my MSU teams are not producing very many highlights, here is a wonderful upset. Anyone who is a Big 12 basketball fan NOT from Oklahoma had to love this.... the Razorbacks upset #4 Oklahoma last night!
Want the sweet highlights? Check out this link, which will take you to KHBS-KHOG's highlights of the game.
Tuesday, December 30
If you have never watched KSPR's TalkBack segment, basically what happens is that the anchors do a story over an issue, share their opinions on it, and then read your responses during their 4:30 and 10 broadcasts.
Tonight's question received many responses. So many that Joe and Christine Daues, the evening anchors, had printed responses to share with the audience that had come in since the beginning of the broadcast. Everything was going fine until Joe read the following line (keep in mind the question is should women be allowed to breastfeed in public): "Only if they are both out..." followed by a pause, a deer in the headlights look, followed by "Oh, that is a bad one." He then quickly tossed the paper out of the pile.
Let's just say that while the KSPR Newsteam held it together fairly well after the incident, you could tell that it was difficult for them to do so. I, however, am still laughing about it. Joe... we're sorry that we are laughing at your expense. Just another hazard of live tv my friends...
The year 2008 was an interesting one for me for a variety of reasons. Personally I had a good year, but professionally I had an even better one. If I were to take the time to mention everything I was thankful for it would take until next year.
I want to focus on one decision in particular that I made and that was to close the door on The News 2K. It was something that I didn't particularly want to do, but I felt that it had reached a point where I had to make a decision. Coming to Show-Me Opinions has been a wonderful experience for me, although I feel that I haven't been able to contribute as much here yet as I would like to. Combine that with Donna being so swamped with work and you have seen an infrequently updated blog. I promise you that will not be the case in 2009. I have a couple of projects I am already working on so that I can bring the spark back to this blog.
But I need your help, too. Help me get Donna back on the stick and writing again!!! She provides a fresh insight into the news that no one else can give.
Thanks again for your readership of this blog. Finally, before I end this post... I have compiled the top 10 stories that drove traffic to the blog this year. I am including posts from TheNews2K in this list... enjoy!
#10: I'll Think I'll Just Leave... Three Months Early (Show-Me Opinions)
#9: Man Drowns Friday on Lake of the Ozarks (Show-Me Opinions)
#8: MSNBC on MSNBC... A Lot (The News2K)
#7: No More Social Security Checks (Show-Me Opinions)
#6: Table Rock Flooding Update (Show-Me Opinions)
#5: My $.02: Vincent David Jericho = TV Expert? (The News2K)
#4: KRCG's Rod Smith Let Go (The News 2K)
#3: Show Me A Naked... WHAT? (Show-Me Opinions)
#2: Breaking News: Manhattan, KS Hit By A Tornado (The News2K)
#1 *by far*: Twas The Night Before The Primary (The News2K)
And the highest bidder was... err... the person selected was former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris. Who? Yeah, the media is asking the same question. TVNewser has the inside scoop here.
It will be interesting to see if the Illinois Congress will allow Blagojevich to have the final say on who is selected to fill the vacated Senate seat.
Monday, December 29
PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SPRINGFIELD MO
915 AM CST MON DEC 29 2008
...MINOR TORNADO DAMAGE FOUND IN BARRY AND MCDONALD COUNTIES...
A NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE STORM SURVEY REVEALED THAT TWO EF-0
TORNADOES TOUCHED DOWN IN BARRY AND MCDONALD COUNTIES.
APPROXIMATELY TWO MILES NORTH OF POWELL ALONG HIGHWAY E...TREE
DAMAGE OCCURRED FROM THE WEAK TORNADO. THE PATH LENGTH WAS
APPROXIMATELY ONE TENTH OF A MILE...WHILE THE WIDTH WAS 20 YARDS.
ALONG HIGHWAY 97 JUST NORTH OF PULASKIFIELD...TREE DAMAGE AND DAMAGE
TO A ROOF OF A BARN OCCURRED FROM THE BARRY COUNTY TORNADO. THIS
TORNADO ALSO HAD A PATH LENGTH OF ONE TENTH OF A MILE WITH A WIDTH
OF APPROXIMATELY 30 YARDS.
BOTH OF THESE TORNADOES WERE ASSOCIATED WITH THE SAME SUPERCELL
Newcomers to the list include:
Aaron's Articles - A good local blog from Aaron McGrath. Check out his perspective of things happening in the Ozarks and around the world.
Busplunge - A blog that offers a plethora of topics to think about and chew upon. This blog is never boring!
Desdinova - Super Villain of the Ozarks - This blog has some of the best satire I have read in ages! Also, there is a lot of good radio stuff to be found here.
Inside Missouri Politics - This is the blog from the Springfield News-Leader, which does a good job of covering politics that affect the Ozarks.
The Political Fix - Love 'em or hate 'em... the St. Louis Post-Dispatch has one of the most comprehensive political blogs out there.
The World According To Chris Brewer - This a blog I have discovered fairly recently, but it is fast becoming a must-see for me!
OzarksWeatherFans - A Ning site where fans of weather come together.
Enjoy these blogs and don't forget about the old favorites. I will update this list as I have time to evaluate more blogs. If you would like your blog considered for the list, please email me: firstname.lastname@example.org . Thanks... and enjoy!
Sunday, December 28
That's right, here in the Ozarks we seem to find ourselves scrambling to our tornado shelters one minute and few hours later reaching for the bag of ice melt. These pictures were taken this morning (Sunday) around St. Joseph, MO. where the scenery had changed from the warm 60 degree weather on Friday night to an ice covered landscape by Saturday morning.
Was it a drug deal gone bad? A freak accident at the cracker factory? No, the story is more complicated than that. Let's just say it involves an elderly woman, a grocery store, and a distrust of banks. Curious? Click here to read the rest of this crazy ordeal from the Associated Press.
Forrest Gump apparently had it all wrong when he said that "life is like a box of chocolates; you never know what you're gonna get." He must have meant crackers. Now if you'll excuse me, I am off to the local grocery store where I will open up random boxes of macaroni and cheese in hopes of finding a diamond ring or maybe even a winning Powerball ticket.
This afternoon, the National Weather Service is investigating "a possible tornado track between Pineville and Monett", according to the Joplin Globe. There had been unconfirmed reports yesterday of a rotating wall cloud between Wheaton and Pulaskifield, but the report I heard on scanner traffic never made it to the NWS Storm Reports section. While it is likely that the tornado (if there was one) was only on the ground for a short time here and there, it does mean that there was one.
Show-Me Opinions will keep you updated on the findings of the Weather Service.
Saturday, December 27
According to a CNN story, a 22 year old woman filed a false police report claiming that someone had kidnapped her 5 month old baby. She even pleaded to the media and held a press conference on Christmas day.
The only problem? She didn't even have a baby.
Apparently, she was trying to get her ex-boyfriend back. What was going through her head when she made up this story? I guess we will have to wait until she tells the judge.
Friday, December 26
All types of severe weather are possible, which includes large hail, damaging winds, flash flooding, and tornadoes. The timing of the severe weather looks to be mainly after dark this evening and through much of the overnight hours. This is always a dangerous time for severe weather, but the problem is compounded further by the fact that many have not been following the weather because of the holiday season.
The situation is serious enough that the National Weather Service will be broadcasting a conference call at 10 a.m. this morning on its NOAA Weather Radios. I will update the blog if any significant new information becomes available between now and the storms.
Please do keep updated on the latest weather developments through the afternoon and into the evening and overnight hours. It could be a long night here in the Ozarks!
Thursday, December 25
Wednesday, December 24
Let me just say that this year has been an extraordinary one for me and I hope that this year has been a blessed one for you, too! While it has been a great year, it has come at a cost for me. I haven't had nearly as much time to spend with my family as I would like. I will be an uncle in a few weeks. My grandfather's health continues to deteriorate. I haven't been able to spend the quality time I would have liked to with either my sister or my grandpa.
Now that the holidays are here, I am hoping that I get one thing with them that money can't buy -- time. While the season is about exchanging gifts and social gatherings for many, for the first time I am more concerned about soaking up those extra seconds, minutes, and hours with the ones I love. I rarely get this much time off during the year, so I need to use it while I have it.
I encourage you to do the same. Spend that extra hour with your sibling, parent, grandparent, aunt, spouse, child, or whomever it is that you truly care about. Some day you will wish you had that hour back so that you could spend it with them. This holiday season the tree is nice, the presents are wonderful, and the food is delicious, but really, for me, it is all about one thing: time!
Tuesday, December 23
I don't want a paralyzing blizzard, but we can't even get a full inch. All we get is this mix stuff, which frankly, I am very tired of. Has the atmosphere instituted a no snow in Southwest Missouri rule or something? Have Ron, Ted, and Kevin made the snow gods angry? Someone must have the answer!
Can we just have some snow please? Thank you. That is all.
Saturday, December 20
Maybe I knew it all along and just decided to deny it. Or maybe I truly thought most people were normal. Either way, I have decided that the vast majority of people trudging through cyberspace have to be half crazy. My reasoning? Look no further than KSPR's Top 10 Most Viewed Stories Online. (You can check out the full list by clicking here.)
Among the journalistic heavy hitters that the KSPR news team has covered in 2008, stories such as a Woman Finding Jesus in a Cheeto Bag along with a Pregnant Woman Being Charged With Prostitution make the station's top ten. No Blunt, Hulshof, Steelman, McCaskill, Palin, etc to be found anywhere... who would have guessed?
We continue to wish Brandon a full recovery.
Friday, December 19
Well...this is it! The last weekend before Christmas. The weekend everyone is frantically trying to get that last person checked off their list. Unless, you are like me who has only one person checked off their list. Yes, I am behind...big time!
Between work, the holidays, and getting ready to be a very, very young grandmother, things have been more than a little bit crazy. As stressful as it has been, I wouldn't trade a minute of it.
While there will still be presents under the tree, there won't be as many as in years past and instead of feeling bad about it and wishing I could do more, I don't. Because maybe, as we all face these hard economic times we will see this as an opportunity to remember what is and should be more important than anything you could put under the tree.
Wednesday, December 17
So... what does Microsoft encourage everyone to do? Switch away from Internet Explorer for the time being. Yesterday, I did just that. And you know what? I like Firefox so much, I might not switch back. If you have ever needed a reason to switch, now you have one. If you are like me, you might find that being stuck in your old ways isn't always a good thing after all.
And to all of you out there reading this saying "I told you so!" to yourself... just keep it to yourself, ok? I really don't want to hear it.
Sunday, December 14
This doesn't look to be the end of the winter weather. More shots of the frozen stuff exist nearly every day this week. Have fun... winter, here we come!
Monday, December 8
Beck announced his surgery this morning and you can view that video at http://www.ky3.com/. You may additionally leave well wishes for Brandon by sending him an email at email@example.com or by clicking here.
Show-Me Opinions wishes Brandon the best of luck with the surgery and will keep him in our prayers.
Sunday, December 7
The Turner Report has a good write-up on the departure and comments. You can read them by clicking here.
Saturday, November 29
Yesterday, that cherring got louder as the Wildcats won the Class 3 State Championship by defeating Cardinal-Ritter 31-7. It was Cassville's first football championship ever. Coach Large and crew should be proud of the work they did and their season. They were dynamic!
Keep in mind this isn't coming from a normal Wildcat fan. This is coming from a conferene foe and district rival. However, for just a few hours yesterday everyone in Monett was a Wildcat fan. Congratulations! (Now be prepared to lose in basketball and wrestling!) :-) Just kidding... kind of!
Tuesday, November 25
Friday, November 21
The Monett Times released a very interesting story today in regards to the recent news of layoffs for up to 40,000 Us Postal workers. While United States Postal Service Media Relations Manager Gerald J. McKeiman released a statement on November 12. about the layoff being "not true," some area postal workers say there has been a letter in circulation at postal offices warning of a possible layoff. As the volume of mail continues to decline, concerns of what lies ahead for not only postal employees but the future of the Postal Service as a government institution are beginning to surface. The Monett Times Community Editor, Darla Damrill went searching for answers. Click Here for the full story.
Thursday, November 20
I was in Hammon Student Center when the MSU Lady Bears won the NIT Tournament Championship (in fact... I was there for all the games). I have been there for several successful seasons. In fact, since I started following the Lady Bears, I don't recall a let down of a season, that is until the last few.
I wish Milleson the best and I imagine the transition hasn't been easy. But I miss the Lady Bears of yesteryear. Someone put out an all points bulletin for them... that spark and fire is needed. Where is the next Melanie Howard, Jackie Stiles, Jenni Lingor, Kari Koch. Where are they? If they don't show up... once again... it's going to be a long season.
Tuesday, November 18
Sunday, November 9
President: I did surprisingly well in this category. I accurately predicted Obama would win (although my electoral math was off just a bit) and the only swing state I missed was Florida. I also nailed that McCain would win Missouri under 1%. Man, I'm good! (just kidding)
Governor: I got the individual correct, but I was low on the margin of victory. Nixon ended up winning by 18%.
Lt. Governor: Once again, I picked correctly but I missed the margin.
Secretary of State: I picked Carnahan correctly, but she won by 26%, not the 13% I expected.
Treasurer: My upset win of the night came to fruition. Clint Zweifel did win the race for Treasurer. He won by 3%.
Attorney General: This was my only missed person prediction of the night. I predicted that Gibbons would win by 2%. He actually lost by 6.
7th Congressional District: Man did I ever misread the voters of this district. I felt that all signs pointed to a "somewhat close" race between Richard Monroe and Roy Blunt. I figured that Blunt would win, but not by 41 points.
132nd MO House: I picked the winner. Don Ruzicka won, although by a little more than I thought he would.
Amendment 1: Passed like I expected it to
Amendment 4: Passed; I thought it would fail due to the confusing nature of the ballot language.
Prop A: Passed even though I still believe it is a horrible horrible thing!
Prop B: Passed like I expected
Prop C: Passed, but with a bigger margin than I anticipated.
All in all, not too bad of a prediction night for me. We shall see how I do the next time!!! :)
Thursday, November 6
Last night, around 12:30 we were awaken from our sleep to find the tornado sirens blaring. As the family gathered in the basement we turned on the television to find out what was going on. I blazed through several channels to find one of the late shows on, another channel, nothing but a map of Missouri with the warning outlined. I had kind of figured that out by the sirens.
Then I turned to KSPR33, where meteorologist Kevin Lighty was on the air. He was going over the tornado emergency procedures. He was right there giving us important information as to where the storms were, when and what we could expect. Even though our satellite kept going in and out as the storm neared,every time it came back on, there he was. He never left us.
It was 12:30 at night with dangerous storms approaching, sirens blaring and people sleeping. I don't want to wait for someone to break in to late night television to tell me that I have just been blown off the map. I want someone who is warning me ahead of time, keeping me updated so that I can do all that is in my power to keep my family safe! KSPR33 was the ONLY channel with continuous coverage through the whole ordeal. That is what I as a viewer want and I am grateful that someone felt that rural Southwest Missouri was important enough to do just that. Thank you Kevin! I will know next time not waste precious time searching for life saving information, I will know exactly where to turn!
Tuesday, November 4
Big news of the night -- no need to elaborate -- I imagine we will have the news that Barack Obama will be the next President coming up within the next 30 minutes...
EDIT: Make that 4 minutes... CNN is projecting Barack Obama will be the next President of the United States.
Monday, November 3
Twas the night before the election and all across Missouri
Not a politician was sleeping, not even Matt Blunt's email attorney.
The yard signs were placed on the lawn with great care
With hope that the candidates they supported would win fair and square.
The ads were still playing on television sets
While visions of swaying voters still danced in their heads.
With Obama courting moderates, and McCain Republican fatcats
Tonight they will likely not settle down for any sort of nap.
When then in the kitchen there arose such a clatter
I sprung from my bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the telephone I flew like a flash
Hoping a friend or relative hadn't been in a crash.
The words on the phone said caller unknown
While the moon shone down brightly on the Ozarks below.
But what to my groggy ears should I hear
But a robo call from Missouri Right To Life, oh dear! oh dear!
With the time nearing two a.m. I knew pretty quick
That this had to be a darned ole Republican trick.
More rapid than eagles the slurs they came
All the things Richard Monroe would vote for, they called them by name!
Abortions! Stem cell research! A bad choice for us!
I heard about everything; how they hated his guts!
Around Missouri, in towns big and small
People were waking at midnight to all of these calls.
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky.
So I opened the door and out it the phone threw
With the caller id and the answering machine, too.
And then in a flash I heard on the roof
What sounded like tiny little donkey hoofs.
As I drew in my hand and was turning around,
Down the chimney Clint Zweifel came with a bound.
He was dressed in a suit from his head to his foot
But now his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.
His cheeks were like roses but his eyes were all bleery
I thought to myself, this man is in the same party as John Kerry?
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow
Like he had given a thousand campaign speeches in a row.
A cardboard cutout of Mike Gibbons he handed to me
And when he was done, I bade him to leave.
On the porch was a man with a broad face and little round belly
Jay Nixon, when he laughed, shook like a bowl full of jelly.
He had thought about calling for support, that jolly old elf,
But decided instead to come see me himself.
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
Reminded me of one thing I had forgotten with dread.
Tonight was just the beginning of his work
His inauguraion was still weeks away he said with a smirk.
Now the dawn was coming quickly and I needed to doze.
But before going to bed the chimney flu I did close.
As I laid back down in bed faintly I heard a the whine of a whistle
And I prayed to the good Lord that Roy Blunt wasn't coming to visit.
Tomorrow some candidates would give up the fight...
While others would say Thank you to all...
And to all see you again in four years on election night!
President: I think this will be closer than some think, but the winner will be Obama. As far as electoral count, I will have to go with Obama only winning 305 electoral votes. Here is how I think the swing states will play out:
Obama: Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Colorado, New Hampshire
McCain: Florida, Missouri, North Carolina, Indiana, Montana
I believe McCain wins Missouri by less than 1 percent. This will be the first time in a long time Missouri has incorrectly picked the winner.
MO Governor: This is one of the biggest no-brainers in the contest. Nixon will win. SW Missouri has a larger than average affinity for the Democrat. This will propel him to victory. I am guessing the margin will be by about 10 - 12 points. In a state like Missouri, that is huge!
Lt. Governor: This may be also be very,very close. I am going to predict a Kinder win, but by less than 1 percent. If Obama ends up carrying Missouri heavily, then Page may win this.
Secretary of State: This one is going to Robin Carnahan, likely by 13 to 14 percent.
Treasurer: This is my upset of the night. I think Clint Zweifel will win this on the coattails of Nixon by around 1 percent. Both Lager and Zweifel are unknowns statewide. That will mean that people will vote based on party. The Republican mantra is not the best to have right now.
Attorney General: This is the most difficult race to predict. This one has so many facets to it that I don't know how they will play out. Conventional wisdom points one way, but my gut tells me that this race may be won by Gibbons. Neither have a lot of name recognition, but Koster has too many skeletons in his closet. His defection to the Democratic party has angered both sides and I believe that may cost him this race. I think Gibbons wins by 2 points, but this is my "going out on a limb" pick.
7th Congressional District: Contrary to some, I believe this has the potential to be a very close race. I know that yard signs aren't a sure fire way to tell who will win, but in a very conservative community such as this to see triple the amount of signs against Rep. Blunt can't be very encouraging. I think this depends on how Obama does in this region. If Obama picks up 30-40% in this region then I believe this race will be close. I predict Roy Blunt will win, but by about 9 points.
132nd MO House Race: Another close race because both have won races in the past. I believe you have to give this to the incumbent. I believe Ruzicka will win by 5 points. Again, the voting percentages for Obama could impact this race, too.
Amendment 1: Passes
Amendment 4: Fails
Prop A: Fails (but it will be close)
Prop B: Passes
Prop C: Passes (barely)
**So those are my thoughts... what say you?**
Saturday, November 1
Graduating from the school and then coming back to teach there was the last thing on my mind as I said goodbye on my Graduation Night in early May. Yet, six years later I found myself back at my alma mater to teach and have been loving every minute of it.
I have heard students who don't normally get excited about athletics jump on the bandwagon. Thursday I saw the most students wearing purple and gold ever (and that includes my time there as a student). I even heard one student who is normally too cool for school say late yesterday afternoon, "I'm proud to be a Cub today." While academics will always be first and foremost in my emphasis, this kind of school spirit helps that environment tremendously.
Our hometown paper did a great job summarizing the reason for the jubilation: "Not since 1971 has a Monett team gone 10-0 in the regular season. And that 1971 club went on to win the first of two state titles in MHS history. In going to 10-0, the Cubs combined a solid defensive effort with an equally solid offensive one, scoring in every quarter."
So, while I am proud to be a Cub every day it was nice to see that others who wouldn't normally do so are feeling that way, too.
Congrats Cubs and good luck Wednesday night against Springfield Catholic!
Tuesday, October 28
Saturday, October 25
Despite my desperate pleadings, Chief Meteorologist Kevin Lighty has refused to hire me to fill Josh's position. Maybe it is time to pull out the blackmail images from a few posts ago.
I don't really know what the point of my post here is, but I just really wanted to comment on the price drop.
Nice side note... a student of mine calculated that if the price continued to drop at the same rate over the next 4 weeks that it has dropped the past 4, we would be paying around $.75 a gallon. I doubt that will happen. In the meantime, treasure the lack of green it takes to fill up!
Monday, October 20
Advancing to finals and placing in individual events were: Gaby Rodriguez - 5th Interpretation, Nik Pate - 5th Radio Speaking and 5th Original Oratory, Kale Turner - 5th Novice Storytelling, Brit Isbell - 4th Original Oratory, Ryan Saunders - 3rd Novice Storytelling, Laramie Ellis - 3rd Novice Prose, Theresa Mangler and Chelsea Ash - 3rd Duo, Rolando Rodriguez - 3rd Interpretation, Rolando Rodriguez and Kacy Barta - 2nd Duo, and Emma Verstraete - 2nd Novice Intepretation and 2nd Novice Prose.
Advancing to quarterfinals and placing in debate were: Ryan Saunders and Emily Copening - 4th Novice Public Forum, Rolando Rodriguez and Hayley LaGarce - 4th Varsity Public Forum, Emma Verstraete - 4th Novice Lincoln-Douglas, Brit Isbell - 4th Varsity Lincoln-Douglas, Kale Turner and Brianna Petersen - 2nd Novice Public Forum, and Kirk Gandy - 2nd Varsity Lincoln Douglas.
The squad finished 4th out of 18 schools in debate sweepstakes and finished 2nd out of 16 schools in individual events sweepstakes. Congratulations!
Saturday, October 18
Jacob Blair, 18 of Lee Summit, Missouri, died after he and four of his friends decided to go to an abandoned production plant. The teens went to the plant to work on a video for their broadcasting class.
The facility had once been a plastic container plant and had been abandoned for several years. Blair had climbed up on to the roof and fell through what authorities believe was either a hole in the roof or a ventilation shaft. Blair fell, landing on his head and later died at the hospital.
Sgt. Mike Childs with Lee's Summit Police said. "Anytime you're at a closed manufacturing site, especially one that's been closed for several years, you're going to have hazards there and it's not something to be playing around with."
While the case is closed, trespassing charges could be filed by the owners of the facility later on.
Monday, October 13
If you have never had the opportunity to check out the Leadership Ranch west of Republic, then you are missing out on quite an opportunity! Today our entire faculty went out there and spent the day working on teambuilding exercises. I was pushed further than I ever thought possible and I learned a lot about myself in the process.
I was a skeptic before, but I am a believer in the process now. For more details on the ranch, click this link.
I wish I would have taken pictures!!!
Saturday, October 11
It has been crazy around the Show-Me Opinion world these past two weeks in which there has been little time to devote to blogging. Newsy is off doing what he does best, and that is coaching his speech and debate team at an area tournament. I have just started back to work full-time as a project manager for a spice company.It has been two years since I have worked full-time, plus go to school. It will be a challenge but I feel very fortunate to have found employment with all the economic uncertainty.
My husband just left to play at a men's softball tournament (40 is the new 20 you know) so I decided to post something before going to the store after Icy Hot and Tylenol.
Well it's off to type up and print the church bulletins for tomorrow. Hope everyone is enjoying this beautiful weather. Until next time... Have a great weekend!
Wednesday, October 8
Should I take personal offense when a student makes those remarks? Probably not. I do anyway, however. I don't hear these remarks often as a teacher. Generally, I hear complimentary things about how I make history and government "interesting", "fun", or my personal favorite "not nearly as boring as I expected." Today, however, was not one of those days.
There were various moments today when I wanted to just yell "Do you know how long it took me to plan this? Do you know that I have little social life because I am required to spend nearly all of time working on things for you all? Do you know that I sleep around 4-6 hours a night because I work long into the night grading and planning and then get up early to make copies of handouts and to complete administrative paperwork? Do you know that while most adults are resting I spend my weekends with high school students? Do you know that I always advocate for you with the administration?", but I didn't. I promptly replied to the student that not everything in life would be fun, but that sometimes we have to complete tasks that we don't enjoy so that we learn the proper material.
I pour my heart and my soul into this profession and I am finding those heartwarming moments you have as a teacher are hard to remember when you have days like I had today. I guess my frustration is with the fact that sometimes I feel like no one notices the hard work I do. I don't want awards. I don't expect keys to the city. I just want a simple "thank you for what you do." I don't think educators in general hear that often enough. And people wonder why teachers leave the profession so regularly!!
Mama was right... there will be days like this. Yet, it doesn't ever make them easier.
Saturday, October 4
...when you are up 49-0 in a high school football game at the end of the 1st quarter! I have been quiet about Monett High School's football success the last few weeks, but here is a stat that I thought you might be interested in.
MHS CUBS... OPPONENTS
247 points... 21 points
Ouch! Monett's toughest challenge will come the 17th of this month when they face off against perennial rival Cassville. Monett has taken down the Wildcats each of the last two years when they have been riding high. Hopefully Cassville won't be able to return the favor.
So... GO CUBS!
The ironic twist to this story is that 13 years ago on that same day, the world gasped as the jury found Mr. Simpson not guilty of the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman. I don't remember much about the trial, except for some of the lawyers, the glove line, and the verdict. I was in 8th grade at the time. Therefore, I can't pass judgment on that original trial's verdict.
What I can say is that things usually have a way of working out and that people who do wrong end up getting their just desserts (although not always exactly when we think they should).
Through all of the media coverage there is one thing being left out. There are some people who really are the biggest losers in all of this. That is the children of Nicole and OJ. Now they have lost their mother and their father. I hope they have a tight knit set of relatives and friends to lean on. I know I would need them.
Thursday, October 2
Tuesday, September 30
Well, that is exactly what Lawrence County Sherrif Ed Weisacosky did this week. Just three months before his term ended as sherrif, he skipped town. He pulled up stakes and moved to Florida. What wonderful character!! This is a man we voted into office? It would be one thing if health issues forced him to resign, but from all media reports I have seen this wasn't the case.
And the best part of all... one of the candidates running to replace him is named the interim sherrif. I would say *cough cough* that is a little bit of an unfair advantage. But, who am I to judge? After all, I won't care who my substitute is (in 28 years) when I leave the schoolhouse doors forever.
Monday, September 29
Sunday, September 28
"The fact that human adults consume huge quantities of dairy products made from milk that was meant for a baby cow just doesn't make sense," said PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. The alternative...human breast milk. Of course, why didn't I think of this sooner?!? PETA has asked the ice cream company, Ben and Jerry's to replace the cow's milk in their ice cream with human breast milk. Yummy!
Do people actually get paid to come up with these ideas?
The reasoning behind this alternative solution is because the cows are suffering from being milked. Good thinking, except for one small detail...MILKING COWS DIE IF THEY ARE NOT MILKED! I guess the cows would not be considered suffering if they are dead. And the word of the day today boys and girls is: RESEARCH.
On the upside,(no pun intended) stay-at-home moms could make some extra cash by selling their breast milk to companies. "Oh look honey, mommy helped make that cheese, lets take some home and suprise daddy." The sale of baby formula and breast pumps would sky rocket. Now that is what I call a stimulus package.
Then I have to wonder about the commercials to promote human breast milk. Ok guys, quit daydreaming and focus. Seriously, what kind of a commercial are you going to put on television? A woman coming out of the bathroom with a pitcher of milk? Maybe a woman holding a breast pump where she says "Got Milk"?
As for Ben and Jerry's, well, they are not quiet ready to leap over to the Breast is Best side yet and offered the following statement:"We applaud PETA's novel approach to bringing attention to an issue, but we believe a mother's milk is best used for her child."
I am a little scared about Thursday night's debate because I will be facing the Washington elite media. I wanted to seek your good opinion about what issues I should highlight and to find out what things to avoid.
If I were you I would avoid talking about Russian airplanes and spend a little more time highlighting the fact that you look a lot like Tina Fey.
I have prepared an original opening statement for the debate Thursday night and wanted to get your take on it. Here it is. Please tell me your thoughts.
I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal."
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
I have a dream today. And when this happens, when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, "Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!"
Ummm... Joe that is Martin Luther King's I Have A Dream Speech. Taking someone else's work and crediting it as your own is called plaigarism. We have been over this before. Remember 1988?
I am getting worried. We are less than 40 days from the election and I am down over 15 points in every major poll. What should I do?
Drop out and name Sarah Steelman as your replacement.
Saturday, September 27
entertaining way to spend part of your Saturday and you are at least remotely interested in the weather... you should attend a KSPR Weather Warriors get together. It was a wonderful time today. This was the third meeting of the group and the picnic was held this time at Doling Park.
No other station in the Ozarks has a tighter knit group of fans than those who gather together once in a while to talk weather, current events, and just have a good time. There is always a member of the KSPR Weather Team there, too. Kevin, Josh, and Natalie are always gracious. They truly are what we here in the Ozarks would call "good folks."
Meteorologist Kevin Lighty even let us play a couple of rounds of Weather Jeopardy today. Pablo (that's me... not my real name, but my stage name) and the posse went 2-0 on the day and had a wonderful time, as evidenced by our smiling faces. Jeff and his team (pictured above) were not so lucky. He does have a wonderful storm blog called Ozark Storms though. Check it out in the blog roll to the right!
For more information on the Weather Warriors, check out http://www.ozarksweatherfans.com/ and join in on all the fun!
(Yes, that is KSPR Chief Meteorologist Kevin Lighty on the slide. Yes, we are blackmailing him with this picture.)
Friday, September 26
Wednesday, September 24
Tuesday, September 23
Monday, September 22
Police have not given up on the search for 39-year old Shirley Riggs, of Independence, Mo., who did not return her 4 children to DFS as scheduled on Saturday afternoon. The reason they say that the Amber Alert has been canceled is because it has out lived it's effectiveness.
While police feel that the children are in imminent danger, a close friend of the family, John McGliton, does not. McGliton told WDAF that she had taken off with the children before because she had caught her husband abusing the girls. Riggs had taken the children to Oregon where she and the children lived with her mother. After 4 years she filed for a divorce in which her husband became angry and filed a report with Missing and Exploited children. Authorities found Riggs and arrested her.
McGliton also said that Riggs husband's sister works for the Division of Family Services and that she was being, "railroaded". Riggs left with the children in fear that the children would be placed in foster homes and she would lose her visitation. Riggs also feared her husband would be allowed overnight visits. McGliton said he doesn't blame her for taking off with her children. The judge in the case has issued a warrant with a $500,000 case only bond.
Sunday, September 21
Yesterday, a fellow faculty member and I were on our way back to SW Missouri from a conference in St. Louis. We had been driving quite a while and decided to stop in Lebanon to fill up with gas because it is cheaper there than anywhere else along I-44 for some reason. We pulled in, filled up, and started up the car to pull out again when the engine temperature gauge began spiking all the way to red.
I am not vehicle savvy, but I knew enough to have my friend pull up to the station again and turn the car off. We popped the hood, but this car was a 2008 HHR and nothing was where I expected it to be. We decided it would be best if my friend called her Chevy roadside assistance. After spending 15 minutes talking to a computer, she finally received a live person! Yet, this person had less knowledge of Chevy vehicles than I did! The only thing he could do was to call a tow truck and tow it to the dealership in Lebanon and wait for it to be fixed when they opened on Monday. What help!
I determined right then that our only other hope was to go to the Wal-Mart Tire and Lube two blocks down to see if they did that kind of work -- which they didn't. Yet, one of their car service employees took time out to come check on the car. After he and I looked around, he surmised that it had run out of coolant. He told us he was not allowed to do it, but guided us through the process. Before long we were on our way.
Most car issues while on the road aren't major catastrophes, but rather small glitches that can be solved in 15 minutes. Chevy roadside assistance, however, apparently doesn't really mean what it says. What it should really be called is "Chevy Roadside Computer Maze and Towing" since that is all they wanted to do. Shouldn't there be technicians on call 24/7? Cars don't break down from 9 to 5, Monday through Friday. Many people may gripe about Walmart, but when Chevy wasn't there to help and we were stranded two hours from home, the only place that had someone with the knowledge was Walmart. We are very thankful for that!
Shirley Riggs, 39, of Independence, Mo., is believed to have fled with her 4 children after she did not return them at 2:00 PM as scheduled. The children were in the custody of the Department of Family Services in which they had given Riggs an unsupervised overnight visit. The report also states that this is the 4th time she has left the state with her children.
- Kelley L. Riggs age 10, w/f dob: 2-5-98 5.01 tall, 67#, Brown Hair, Blue eyes
- Raven SA Riggs, age 12, w/f dob: 11-5-95 5.01 tall, 67#, brown hair, brown eyes
- Rhiannon G. Riggs, age 7, w/f dob: 8-23-01, 4.02 tall, 45#, Brown hair, brown eyes
- Spencer D. Riggs, age 14, w/m dob; 9-29-93, 6.02 tall, 180#, brown hair, brown eyes
Shirley Riggs, is described at 5.05 tall, 115 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. She may be driving a maroon, 1992 Dodge Caravan minivan with Missouri plate MB6-C8M. Police say she could be headed to Denver, Colorado or Oklahoma.
Please call 911 or the Independence police department if you have any information about this case.
Thursday, September 18
Manuel Flores, 38, who had been an inmate at the Barry County jail for the last nine days, died Tuesday morning, September, 16, the day he was scheduled to appear in court. The cause of death has yet to be determined and his wife, Tonya Flores spoke with Show-Me Opinions about the events leading up to his death. Tonya said, "there have been rumors and false statements as to what happened to Manuel, I just want everyone to know the truth."She also stated, that while she was reluctant at first to speak up, her decision to not stay silent would hopefully keep this senseless tragedy from happening to someone else in the future.
Here is her story.
On Monday September, 15, shortly after Manuel had finished eating breakfast, he began feeling sick. His condition did not improve, and he began spitting up blood and passing out. He then told jail officials that he needed to be seen by a doctor. Manuel was given a medical release form to fill out and sign so that medical treatment could be administered. Some of the inmates had to help him fill out the paperwork which he signed, and according to his wife jail officials "denied". Witnesses told his wife that Manuel was given pepto bismol and tylenol and then told by the jailer to just, "shut up".
Tonya Flores said that after he was denied medical treatment, Manuel called her asking her to please find a way to help him. She proceeded to call the jail, then the sheriff, then the chief of police, five attempts in which she said were ignored. "He's got a touch of the flu, no big deal," she was told. She also stated that some of the inmates who had spoke out about getting him help were put in "the hole" for the night.
The next morning as Mrs. Flores and Manuel's lawyer sat in court waiting on her husband, Manuel died in the floor of his cell. She said it was an hour and a half later when she was told her husband had died.
Mrs. Flores said that statements which surfaced early Tuesday stating the autopsy had indicated the cause of death being from inflammation around the heart, is false. She received a call from the Barry County coroner Tuesday evening at 8:00 PM. It was during their conversation he explained to her that the results of the autopsy would take from 6 to 8 weeks. She said there is no way of knowing the cause of death until that time, and questions why someone would make such a statement.
While there are many unanswered questions surrounding this case, the questions Tonya Flores wants answers to is, why Manuel was denied his right to medical treatment ? Why did her husbands plea for help, hers, and those of other inmates, go unanswered ?
And the hardest question she'll have to answer... is to their son as to why his dad is never coming home.
Wednesday, September 17
Fox News *Hannity and Colmes* - BREAKING NEWS: HANNITY IN EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH SARAH PALIN
CNN *Larry King Live* - BREAKING NEWS: DONALD TRUMP ENDORSES JOHN McCAIN
MSNBC *The Rachel Maddow Show* - BREAKING NEWS: OBAMA MAKING UP GROUND IN KEY BATTLEGROUND STATES
You know what would have been true breaking news? Sarah Palin agreeing to come on to MSNBC and be interviewed by someone who isn't smitten with her and the Republican Party, like Rachel Maddow. Also, if Larry King would have found out who Donald Trump's hairdresser is that could have made for a flashy red banner. Possibly most worthy of a Breaking News banner during the 8:00 hour would have been if on the off chance Sean Hannity would actually let Alan Colmes talk. Those issues, my friends, are worthy of breaking news banners. What you saw tonight... was not.
In 2007 Kelsey Smith, 18, was abducted from the parking lot of a Target store in Overland Park, Kan., and then murdered by 26-year old, Edwin Hall. Hall was sentenced this week to life in prison.
When Kelsey's family realized she was missing the first thing they did was call her cell phone. An hour after Kelsey was abducted law enforcement had the video surveillance tapes from target. Their next move was to track Kelsey through her cell phone. But the technical department for Verizon seemed clueless and uncooperative in obtaining information in which time was of the utmost importance. Information that other cell phone providers say should have taken anywhere from fifteen minutes to an hour, took 4 days for Verizon. Forty-five minutes after law enforcement had that information Kelsey's body was found.
Tuesday, September 16
As much as I would really like for it to happen, Microsoft is not going to send me $250 for every person I forward your message to. Nothing exciting happens when I click on the send key. Your inspirational messages of hope and healing are nice, but I much rather prefer a personal email filling me in on your life and asking me how my day has gone. Oh, and I especially love the 5 forwards today informing me that Barack Obama is a Muslim and he will blow up America as soon as he is elected. I keep waiting for the forward that breaks the news that McCain actually attends KKK meetings in his spare time.
Is it to much to ask that if you want to communicate with me that you actually send me something of value? I think from now on, when I get a forward in my inbox, I am going to respond with the following reply:
Since you obviously have enough spare time on your hands that you can send me these 8 forwards in a six hour time frame, maybe you can use your time to check www.snopes.com concerning the validity of the emails you are sending. Look at all the nifty things I learned in just 10 short minutes. No Obama is not a terrorist. Yes, Starbucks supports the troops. Despite your email to the contrary, Pepsi has not removed God from "God Bless America" on their 4th of July special edition cans. God will not send down a lightning bolt to strike me if I don't forward this prayer, but I will quit speaking to you if I get another one of these messages with your name attached to it.
Stop Sending Me Forwards!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
PS - If you forward this to 15 of your friends within 12 minutes, you will receive the winning Powerball numbers in your mailbox.
Two people are in jail and a little boy is dead. Sound familiar? It should as it continues being repeated over and over again in Missouri. The other familiar part is the role that the Division of Family Services seems to play. Kimberly Helmes, 21, and her boyfriend Kyle Cooper, 25 of Blue Springs are being held in the Jackson county jail on a $500,000 cash bond after firefighters found Helmes's 1-year old boy dead in their home on Friday. The home was also occupied by Cooper's parents.
The little boy identified as JB along with his brother were being abused by Cooper according to Helmes. Firefighters had responded to a 911 call in which the caller had stated the little boy was not breathing. When they arrived they found the 1-year old dead with injuries that included a broken arm, fractured skull and ribs, malnutrition and his tongue split in half. A thread was hanging from his tongue where the couple had tried to stitch it back together. It is believed that the little boy had been suffering with these injuries since at least Labor Day. Cooper had however told authorities that the boy had fallen in July and they had "successfully" stitched his tongue back together at that time. The stitches had began to fall out last week.
Both the boys had been taken into protective custody in May by the Division of Family Services because the 2-year old had excessive bruising. Four days later they were returned to the home.
Four days later they completed an investigation in what usually takes a month. Apparently there were no monthly visits or does stitching up a child's tongue not fall within the guidelines of abuse? And certainly one cannot expect a trained caseworker to see the signs of malnutrition. So, either the case was closed because excessive bruising does not warrant a watchful eye or the caseworker never bothered with the visitation. What excuse will they use this time?
I will repeat again, and continue to repeat for as long as it takes, How many Missouri children have to die before we realize "the system" does not work? Is there a magic number that we have to reach before caseworkers and those involved with the system are held accountable? Yes, I said accountable. Two people are responsible for this little boy's murder, but there are others who are responsible for failing to prevent it!
Monday, September 15
Stocks came spiraling down today amid the news concerning Lehman Bros. In fact, the Dow Jones dropped 504 points, its worst single day loss since the reopening of the stock market after 9/11.
The news isn't getting any better either. As of 9:30 tonight, the Asian stock markets were crashing down over 7% in some cases. This is coming in reaction to the US market downturn.
The outlook for tomorrow doesn't look bright either. Futures are already sitting down over 150 points. There is additional concern that insurer AIG may not make it through the night either. Buckle up everyone!
Now, I'm going to take the bull by the horns by talking about the recent hurricane and those along the coast who ignored the mandatory evacuation order. Unlike some, I believe if a person decides that he or she is bound and determined to stay, I don't see a problem with staying. What I do have a problem with, is them calling for help and expecting someone to rescue them from their roof top after they made the decision to stay. Nobody wants to leave their home. But to put others in danger just because you don't want to leave is wrong. Stay should mean just that, stay. If your food and water floats away, stay. If you have to live on your roof for a couple of weeks, stay. Whatever happens during and after the storm your on your own.
I saw those on the news standing in their backyard watching the waves come crashing over the sea wall hours before hurricane Ike hit who said they were staying. Officials were going door to door begging these people to leave and still they stayed. I heard things like "I have to stay here and protect my property from looters." Well, I don't think your dead body is going to slow looters down much. What it does do, is put emergency personnel in harms way. They know that sooner or later they will have to return to either rescue these people or put them in a body bag. My hats off to first responders for the job they do, because unless you slept through several days of warnings, I don't have much sympathy for you if you make the decision to stay.
Then there is the excuse, and this one irritates me to no end. "If the Lord has decided it's my time to go, there is nothing I can do about it." Yes, the Lord has sent a hurricane to destroy half of Texas because it's your time to go. The last time I checked the Lord did invent brains in which to make decisions with. Did you ever stop and think that maybe he gave it to you so that you could get some use out of it in times like that? For those that truly believe that way, stop throwing your money away on health care coverage. If it's your "time to go," you certainly don't need a doctor or medicine.
The stress people face when having to leave their home and not knowing what they will return to is understandably great. Being told to leave time after time certainly must get old. That however, comes with the territory of living along the coast. If people feel that they must stay to protect their material things, by all means stay. Just don't ask others to risk something that their families wont be able to replace.
In my opinion, the biggest test today is twofold. First, how low will the market go? Secondly, will the market stabilize by the end of the day? If there is a huge selloff early but the market can then stabilize itself, we will see that it is just reacting to the financial news from the weekend. If it doesn't, then it will shine a light on the fact that this economy is in worse shape than some thought.
It is going to be a long day for some.
Sunday, September 14
Could someone please explain to me the disparity in price from one store to the other?
Why is Casey's charging $3.39 in Lexington and $4.39 in Farmington? Is there that much difference?
Friday, September 12
Stay tuned with the latest information as hurricane Ike makes landfall between 12:00-2:00 a.m.
Live Coverage KTRK
The monster hurricane Ike is scheduled to make landfall sometime early Saturday. Flooding has already began to effect some areas hours before Ike's arrival because of this storm's massive size. People along the coastal areas have been warned that death is eminant if they choose to stay. Many people still remain and officials are so concerned they are going to the residents and speaking them face to face, begging them to leave.
You can follow the latest information by using the link below.
Thursday, September 11
Of course the lines at the license bureau would be too long, and we certainly cannot expect them to have to wait until it's their turn. But that's no problem, we can set up booths at our friendly neighborhood Wal-Marts across the country. Once inside the booth they would sit down in front of a steering wheel with a gas and break pedal located on the floor. If they can reach the pedals, they pass the test. A machine would then take their picture and spit out their license and they would now be legal to drive. It's simple and it's easy... immediate gratification, just the way we like it. Everybody's happy!
This would fit in so nicely with the other new laws trying to gain a foothold. You know, the one about lowering the drinking age to 18. And if the legalization of marijuana bill passes then everything will be perfect. Life will be just one big party! Then we won't have to worry about our kids going off to another country to die, they can do it right here in America! It would also take care of the lack of jobs. There would be plenty of jobs to go around, because many would just be at home smoking dope and drinking beer all day. Those that choose to work could get a job growing marijuana and for those that have decided to pursue a career, they could find employment with rehab centers across the country. Teachers would have more time to dedicate to those that truly wanted an education and college presidents could compete against one another by which school is the best "party school." If you can slam a beer, you've passed the entrance exam. Whoohoo! Education at it's best!
The land of the free, free to do what ever we want, right or wrong. A land where we don't need rules. No need to worry about drinking and driving, there will be plenty 6 year olds to drive us home or maybe we can just get rid of that silly old rule too, while we're at it. We will however need laws that protect our rights to do whatever we want. So the first new law we'll need to implement will make it illegal to have loving parents and a home with rules . Open the prison doors, we need room for these kinds of people! How dare they think they can mold us in to God fearing people! Oh, and if you belong to an organization that protects the rights of those who have been abused, killed by someone using drugs or drinking and driving...death penalty. It's now a world that promotes everyone for themselves.
Overexaggeration...yes, at least for the time being. But my point is, where do we draw the line? When do we begin to realize that just because we want something, that doesn't make it good for us or for anyone else. When you are 5 you want to be 10 and when you're 18 you want to be 21, that's normal. But, when you are 4o and burying your children because we did away with the laws that were established to protect them, that's simply stupidity.
Sunday, September 7
Just a reminder there is still time to help out Eli and his Team With A Moose. The Walk Now For Autism will be this coming Saturday at the Jordan Valley Park in Springfield.
If you can't attend the walk you can still get involved by making a donation. Any size donation would be greatly appreciated. To make a donation click on Eli and his team with a moose above.
To find out more about Autism click here.
Let's show Eli how important his future and those of other autistic children across Southwest Missouri is to us.
Thursday, September 4
That is the message that the media,analyst,and others have been sending since they learned about Governor Palin and her family. Unmarried pregnant teens and special needs children should be hidden away. How dare parents of these children be proud of them or portray their home as a safe and loving environment! How dare a woman with 5 children run for Vice President of United States. Doesn't she realize that this office is reserved for someone who knows their place and stays in it? Doesn't she realize that only a man with a supportive wife and perfect children belong in the White House?
Those thoughts are exactly what has gotten this country into the problems we face today. Someone comes along that disrupts the brainwashing power of big government and the media and all of a sudden Governor Palin is not fit for office because she doesn't fit into the "Leave It To Beaver," world. Well, I'll take a woman who is not afraid to show the world the issues that real life families deal with on a day to day basis and who is not afraid to step on toes to bring about change over a puppet any day!
For the media or anyone else to use the fact that Palin's teenage daughter made an appearance before the nation last night as a reason to discredit her abilities is shear hypocrisy. These kinds of statements only prove their belief that Americans cannot think for themselves and need direction from them in making a wise choice. A choice that protect their interests not ours. That's the way the game is played. How dare someone challenge the rules of the game.
As a voter who has been undecided up to this point, I can say with all honesty, Governor Palin speech was amazing and she deserves the respect that any other person in her position would be granted.I believe...
It's time for all the political geniuses to stick to the issues and let the American people decide based on the issues, like, energy, health care, foreign policy, the economy. Any of those things ring a bell? Believe it or not there are some Americans left out there who would like to hear what the candidates have to say and not the media or analysts. If the political wizards of this country are really concerned with bringing about change, they could start with a change of attitude . If that's simply out of the question, there's always duct tape!
Sunday, August 31
Hurricane warnings and mandatory evacuations are now in place for southern Mississippi as well as southeast Louisiana, which includes the city of New Orleans. Hurricane Gustav which had weakened somewhat,remains at a category 3 and is still a major storm. Forecasters have advised that Gustav could strengthen over the next 12 to 24 hours with the possibility of becoming a category 4 before reaching landfall early Monday morning. This dangerous storm was located about 225 miles from the mouth of the Mississippi and was moving at approximately 17 mph., packing winds in excess of 115 mph.
Chief of the Louisiana State Police, Mike Edmondson, stated that nearly 90 percent of residents living along the coast had left, making it the largest evacuation in state history.
Mayor Ray Nagin of New Orleans has implemented a dawn-to- dusk curfew for the city, to help guard against looting. Nagin made it very clear anyone caught would go directly to jail. He also issued a stern warning to those who would not heed the warnings to evacuate, that they were "on their own." A skeleton crew of less than 50 police officers and emergency workers would stay behind and that no emergency services would be offered to anyone who had decided to stay. Mayor Nagin not only stressed how dangerous a storm this was but referred to it as "the storm of the century," and this was not the storm that persons should stay and ride out, but that everyone should "get their butts out now." Hopefully, all will have listened.
Monday, August 18
Tuesday August 12,2008
Anatoly Dmiturk, 18 of Strasburg, CO., drown on Lake of the Ozarks after he jumped from a pontoon boat to swim. Dmiturk began waving his arms and then went under. His body was recovered two days later on August 14,by Missouri Water Patrol.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
Chance Harp, 23 of St. Louis drown on a private lake in Osage County after the canoe he and another individual were in capsized. Harp began to struggle and the other individual tried to help him to shore. Harp who continued to struggle began pulling the other individual under and he had to break free. He swam to shore and called 911. Harp's body was recovered by Missouri Water Patrol.
Sunday, August 17
Earlier this week the residences of Virginia Gambriel, 61, of Pleasant Hope was the scene of an animal rescue by members of law enforcement, humane society and Division of Family Services. At least 317 animals suffering from neglect and malnutrition were removed from the residence. There were also 6 children removed from the home at the time the search warrant was served. The property had several old mobile homes and junk cars that served as shelter for a large number of dogs. Gambriel lived in one of these mobile homes along with 2 grandchildren in which she had custody. Also occupying the same mobile home were around 100 animals according to authorities. Virginia Gambriel was charged with 2 counts of child endangerment with more charges possible.
The children who were removed from the home, were dirty,covered in flea bites,signs of scabies and ringworms were present. The children were breathing dangerous amounts of ammonia and dried feces odor. The conditions in which these children lived in everyday consisted of trash, cages and animal cages and a least one dead animal carcass 6 feet from where Gambriel slept. In one of the children's bedroom there was a small pig in a pen next to the bed and 4 malnourished dogs along with large amounts of feces. Another child's bedroom had cages full of birds, quail, mice and gerbils.
Gambriel obtained custody of two of her grandchildren in 2001 according to www.courts.mo.gov/casenet. Docket information shows that a yearly review was to be conducted and due each year on the 16th of July. The last entry was in 2007. There is no information listed to indicate if a review was actually conducted or by whom.
So now I am suppose to believe that on May 14th, 2008 that authorities just learned for the very first time, ever, that there might be a problem. No neighbors ever complained, the alleged yearly review gave no indication, nobody had the foggiest idea that two children surrounded by 317 starving animals making their way in and out of these old mobile homes,ONE IN WHICH THEY LIVED IN, never threw up a red flag for anybody?
I'm also suppose to believe that if someone did check on these children on July 17,2007 that Gambriel was baking cookies and dusting. And just as soon as those checking on the children left, she started moving in old trailers and people started flooding her with their unwanted animals.
Or maybe it's more like...
Nobody ever checked on those children and chances are neighbors have been complaining about the conditions for years. The court system handed the children over to the next of kin and little if any investigation was done. And even after law enforcement investigated in May, it took 2 1/2 months before anything was done. Was there 2 1/2 months worth of red tape?
These children didn't "fall through the crack," of the system, they were ignored by the system. While there may be several people to blame in this whole disgusting mess, I think it only fair to start at the top with Governor Blunt and work our way down. Missourians have been given example after example of the system that continues to fail children, due in part to cut backs implemented by Governor Blunt. A court system that isn't interested in "family problems," along with mounds of cases that promote tired, burned out caseworkers to either lie or take short cuts.
The court gave Gambriel custody of her two grandchildren. The court system gives custody according to what they deem is in, "the best interest of the child." If this is what they consider a "child's best interest," no wonder child abuse has reached epidemic proportion. If this is how the system works, then...Missouri we have a problem.