Opinions

Sun
14
Oct

Lack of Medicaid expansion key factor in closure of rural hospitals, new report states

A new report from the Government Accountability Office found that by not expanding Medicaid, Missouri’s rural population will be put at a greater risk of losing their hospitals and reducing reasonable access to medical professionals.

Four hospitals have already closed in Missouri since 2014: SoutheastHEALTH Center of Reynolds County, Parkland Health Center–Weber Road in Farmington, Sac-Osage Hospital in Osceola, and Twin Rivers Regional Medical Center in Kennett.

“This independent report confirms that by refusing to expand Medicaid, the Missouri Legislature chose to put Missouri’s rural communities at risk,” said Tom Bastian, Protect Our Care Missouri spokesperson. “With four hospitals in rural Missouri already closed, it is devastating to think of the damage that could have been prevented. Missouri legislators need to stop playing politics with people’s health care.”

A recent state-by-state report:

Sun
14
Oct

Support the Clean Missouri Initiative

Missourians will have the opportunity to end Jefferson City’s lobbyist gift culture for good by passing Amendment 1, the Clean Missouri initiative, on November 6. The Clean Missouri measure will ban any single gift worth more than $5.

Clean Missouri, the campaign supporting Amendment 1, released a report (https://www.cleanmissouri.org/lobbyists/) on the Jefferson City lobbyist gift culture with shocking statistics and a few colorful stories.

A few highlights:

•Lobbyists have reported giving an average of $885,020 in gifts to the Missouri General Assembly every year, for years 2004-2017.

•The reported gift total for 2017—$1,070,667—is the highest on record at the Missouri Ethics Commission. The second highest reported total was $1,006,050 in 2006.

Tue
09
Oct

Now Showing: The House with a Clock in its Walls

Review by David Gifford

 

The House with a Clock in Its Walls is a movie directed by Eli Roth (Hostel) and is his first kid-friendly movie.

The movie stars Jack Black (School of Rock) as Jonathan Barnavelt, Cate Blanchett (Ocean’s 8) as Florence Zimmerman, and Owen Vaccaro (Daddy’s Home) as Lewis Barnavelt.

The tale mostly follows Lewis as a young kid who, during the war, has to move in with his uncle Jonathan after the death of his parents. At the house that Jonathon owns things become magical and odd. This is a world of magic, and given its source material’s influence to the Harry Potter franchise the tone feels similar to the earlier films in that series.

The house is a character of its own. The chairs move, the shrubbery moves, everything about this house can be alive and it always gives a sense of mystery, but good-natured fun.

Tue
09
Oct

An update on the Crane Lake work

Here is an update on work occurring at Mark Twain National Forest’s Crane Lake, a 100-acre fishing lake in Iron County.

A contract was awarded to Meramec Excavating to construct an emergency access road to Crane Lake’s dam and a temporary boat ramp.  Work has been progressing on both projects.

Historically, there has been limited access to Crane Lake dam due to its remote location.  We have been using Forest Road 2115 to access the dam for years, but damaged concrete culverts on this road has further limited administrative access to lightweight vehicles such as utility task vehicles.  Part of the Crane Lake National Recreation Trail travels on Forest Road 2115.

We looked at alternative access routes to the dam with an important consideration in mind – emergency heavy equipment must be able to use the access route during a high water event.  Many people have asked me “why not repair the culverts on Forest Road 2115?”

Mon
24
Sep

Now Showing: Tag

Tag is directed by Jeff Tomsic and stars: Jeremy Renner (The Avengers) as Jerry, Ed Helms (The Hangover) as Hogan, Jake Johnson (The Mummy) as Chilli, Jon Hamm (Baby Driver) as Bob, Annabelle Wallis (The Mummy) as Rebecca, Isla Fisher (Wedding Crashers) as Anna, and Hannibal Buress (Neighbors) as Kevin Sable.

Mon
24
Sep

Age Spots - Not too early to review coverage

October seems so far away. With the weather so hot and humid I look forward to the cooler days of fall. Fall brings not only cooler weather, beautiful leaf transformations and football, it also brings us Medicare Part D Open Enrollment, October 15-December 7.

Every year those on Medicare get a chance to review their prescription drug coverage, to make sure it is the best fit for the coming year. Medicare drug plans can change every year and sometimes beneficiaries are surprised by the changes. All beneficiaries will receive an Annual Notice of Change (ANOC) from their plans before open enrollment begins, usually in September. The ANOC includes any changes in coverage, costs, or service area that will be effective in January for the plan you are currently on. If you do not receive this notice, contact your plan.

Thu
06
Sep

Letter to the Editor - Sick to My Stomach

Dear Editor,

When I was in the Army, I was a member of President Johnson’s Honor Guard. As such, I came into contact with a lot of senators, congressmen, politicians, and also buried a lot of dead soldiers. Never during any of these events have I ever witnessed anything like just happened with Trump.

Thu
06
Sep

Letter to the Editor - Working for the Middle Class

Dear Editor,

Back in June House Republicans released a proposal they said would balance the budget in nine years, making large cuts to entitlement programs, including Medicare. 

Thu
16
Aug

Rental Roundup: The Hurricane Heist

by David Gifford

 

The Hurricane Heist is a movie directed by Rob Cohen (The Fast and the Furious) and stars Toby Kebbell (Kong: Skull Island) as Will, and Maggie Grace (Fear the Walking Dead) as Casey.

The movie is about a group of people trying to do a heist during a massive hurricane. The heist is at the U.S. Treasury. The hurricane was meant as a way to cover up the crime as most people would be trying to avoid the hurricane and evacuating.

Two brothers had their father killed during a hurricane, and the one becomes a meteorologist to try and understand the things he now fears. That character is the protagonist Will. The goal for both Will and Casey is to stop the robbery and get the money back. The movie sounds cheesy and it is, but it also has charming fun atmosphere that makes it worth watching.

Thu
16
Aug

Letter to the Editor - "Above the law"

Dear Editor,

Recently an attack ad against Senator McCaskill accused her of being insensitive to victims of domestic violence because her husband was accused (but never prosecuted) of abuse in his previous marriage - yet the nearly two dozen accusations of Trump sexually abusing women are dismissed.

The outrageous attack ad is the kind of dirty politics that have long characterized political campaigning. But now something new has been added: a foreign country is doing the cyber equivalent of Watergate by breaking into the data of the Democrat Party and is spreading truly fake news through social media.

In 2016 Russian hackers obtained and distributed information, real and false, that in all likelihood influenced the outcome of the presidential election. Now there is overwhelming evidence that Russia continues its computer sabotage and there is strong evidence that Senator McCaskill, running for re-eletion, has been a victim of Russian ‘phishing’ attacks.

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