Shutdown: People took these jobs knowing the risk

by Ray Rehder

Does anyone remember who won the 1994 World Series?  Of course not, the series was cancelled that year due to a player’s strike.  As a result attendance dropped as fan’s attention in the game suffered until the 1998 homerun chase renewed interest in the game.  I bring up the 1994 World Series because most everyone with any interest in baseball remembers that strike and how it lasted into the 1995 season.

What about the government shutdown of 1995?  Or those that occurred in 2011, 2013, 2017 or the three day shutdown in January, 2018?  Did anyone even know we had them?  Of course not, because we all survived and none of our lives were effected in any way.


Updating County Commission efforts

I realize it’s been awhile since my last column to the citizens of Iron County.  I have a very strong work ethic and get deeply involved in my work and time seems to fly by. I am a strong believer that accomplishing a goal is more important than just merely writing a column. So, I hope this column is informative and provides you with a summary of the activities your County Commission is undertaking.


Missouri State Audit: Over the last several months, Iron County elected officials have been busy providing records and information to a team of auditors that were conducting a very thorough audit.  This included all the operations of Iron County government.


Now Showing: Creed 2

by David Gifford


Creed 2is the sequel to Creed, which was a reboot of the Rocky franchise focusing on Apollo Creed’s son Adonis Creed. 


The best cure for political exhaustion

by Randy Pribble



We are all politically exhausted.

We are tired of the half-truths, innuendos and outright lies that prevail in what passes for political campaign advertising.

Not all of it is untrue, of course, but if you watch television or read the direct mail you receive, chances are none of it was entirely accurate. Most of it was probably fear-mongering and name-calling.

The only remedy is self-education; seeking out the truth from a variety of sources online and in print.  It is doubtful if very many people actually do that. Most just follow the party line without question.

That’s unfortunate for those people and our country, because the truth is elusive.


Now Showing: Halloween (2018)

Halloween (2018) is an interesting film for anyone that has been following along with the Halloween franchise throurgh the years. I’m not going to review  the original Halloween film, but believe it or not, most of the films you may enjoy today might not have existed at all without the original Halloween. The movie redefined low-budget cinema, bringing independent cinema to the mainstream and changing the face of the industry forever.

Halloween isn’t just the greatest horror film of all time, it is most likely the most influential film of our current generation. Plenty of sequels have tried to rekindle the magic of the original and have come up with decent, but mixed results. None of them ever matched up to the original in tone or quality.


Letter - An astounding moment of honesty

Dear Editor,

In an astounding moment of honesty, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell admitted the federal deficit has ballooned this year, even calling it “very disturbing.”

His plan for responding: cut Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid. McConnell does not admit the new federal tax revisions haven’t been the economic wonder promised: not only did they not pay for themselves, the mega-tax reductions for corporations and super-rich people are now the cause of a deficit so bad the GOP is calling for further reductions in the public safety net. The only surprise is that McConnell’s announcement came before the mid-term elections.


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:


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.


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.


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?”


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