April 13, 2006

What if?

by Chris Feeney

What if we changed the rules of politics? While that likely will never happen, Id settle for some adjustments in campaigning and public relations. Of course, that is even less likely to be seen in my lifetime.

Whats he talking about? Well, as I tried to sort through my full in-box of e-mail, I noticed a disturbing pattern in correspondence I was getting from candidates for office, public officials and political parties. It seems like all we want to do is point out what is wrong with our world. No one wants to offer any ideas for how to fix our problems, they just want to blame the other guy for doing a bad job.

I hate to name names, but I hate even more to lump all these folks into the same pot to be cooked by this editorial. So Ill try to drive down the middle of the road and be as fair to all as possible, picking out examples from both sides of the aisle even though you all know which side I sit on.

The message that sent me down this road came from Claire McCaskills office.

McCaskill, the failed candidate for Missouri Governor in 2004, is now seeking to unseat Republican Jim Janet from his United States Senate seat.

Her office sent me a comment on the planned visit of President George Bush, who along with Sen. Talent, will be in Jefferson City to highlight the federal Medicare Part D prescription drug plan.

The statement from McCaskill was:

Sadly, Jim Talent gave into the big drug company lobbyists instead of listening to Missouri seniors when he voted for this disastrous Medicare Part D. He now thinks standing on a stage with the President will make him look strong, but Missouri seniors wont be fooled. Missourians need a senator who has the independence to put the needs of our seniors before the profits of the big drug companies.

I understand this is campaign rhetoric, but it still sends steam out my ears. We all know the Medicare drug plan has its issues. What I hate is how politicians latch onto political gaffs and bandy them about trying to enflame voters against the opposition. Folks, we have to be wiser than that. We cant allow our disillusionment with a particular plan or program to be the fuel for our decision making. Sure it can be the motivation for us to consider other candidates, but lets not let them pull the wool over our eyes.

If a politician wishes to use the mistakes of another for their own gain, lets force them at least to offer an alternative solution to the issue. Thats all Im asking. It makes me mad when all they do is try to get people fired up enough about the problem to overlook the fact that they themselves have offered no solution, except replacing the decision maker. Thats sort of like tearing out the engine in your car when it isnt running and replacing it with a new one. Sure you have something that will make the car run, but you may have tossed away a perfectly good motor to replace it with a new one that may not do the job any better.

At the same time, we shouldnt allow our approval of acts that politicians can attach their names to, to be the sole reason we keep them in office. Im referring to all of the opportunities officials have to announce that a certain group of constituents has been approved for a grant, or federal disaster aid, or whatever other good news they can hijack and try to appear responsible for.

For example heres the first sentence of a press release I received a few weeks ago:

U.S. Senators Jim Talent and Kit Bond, Congresswoman Jo Ann Emerson and Governor Matt Blunt today announced that President Bush has approved the Governors request for a federal disaster declaration for affected Missouri counties after severe storms and tornadoes

While Im sure each of these folks was in favor of this action, I have to question how instrumental they were in securing the aid, or if they simply didnt take the opportunity to announce the action taken by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Maybe Im just a skeptic, or possibly Im too hard on the system. Still, I would love to clear away all of this peripheral junk and just get down to the business at hand of fixing what is wrong and securing what is right. If all you want to do is borrow the credit for good news, or blame the other guy for the bad news, then dont count on my vote.

Rotary Hosts SCR-I Football Coaches

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Members of the football coaching staff from Scotland County R-1 High School recently presented a program to the members of the Scotland County Rotary Club.  The Head Coach is Mikel Gragg and assistants are Troy Carper and Rod Sears.  Coach Gragg reported that there are 30 boys on the team and two are injured and unable to play.  There are 13 seniors on the team.  Mr. Carper is the defensive coach and Mr. Sears works with special teams. In the classroom, Mr. Gragg teaches Jr. High & High School PE.  Mr. Carper teaches Life Skills and Mr. Sears teaches high school math classes.  The football coaches are pictured with local Rotarian and school superintendent, Ryan Bergeson.

Patrol Discusses Bus Safety

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Elementary Guidance focused on safety during the month of September.  Sgt. Brent Bernhardt discussed Bus Safety with SCR-1 kindergartners.  We can ALL help keep our students safe by slowing down and stopping when we see the flashing lights and stop signs.  Thank you bus drivers for your service!  

MHS Class of 1956 Reunion

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1956 GRADUATING CLASS HOLDS 60 YEAR REUNION – A total of 23 class members of 1956 graduating class of Memphis High School met at the Scotland County  Fitness Center to celebrate their 60th class reunion. A delicious dinner was catered by the Rutledge School Restoration Society.  Traveling the farthest was Dean Hicks from Las Vegas,  Nevada, followed by Bill Smoot and Suzanne  Smoot (Leach) traveling from Billings, Montana.  A good time was enjoyed by all. Pictured in the front row (L to R) are Evelyn Magruder (Prebe), Marilyn Dunn (Prebe), Joyce Aylward (Kiddo), Joann Rood (Carlson), and Edna Gundy (Miller). Middle row (L to R) are Marietta Fowler (Ferris), Betty Ann Lefler (Walker), Leon Kerr, Joanna Shelly (Peck), Suzanne Smoot (Leach), and Ruby Hanson (Pample). Back row (L to R) are Kenny Nelson, Dean Hicks, Barbara Smith (Adams), Jerry Bland, Carol Scurlock (Simerl), George Rude, Bill Smoot, Audrey Glass, Larry Howe, Larry Harrington, and Phil Aylward.

Rush to Preach at Kahoka

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Rev. Terry Rush  will be the guest speaker at the Kahoka Christian Church on October 2, 2016. Terry began his ministry at Kahoka Church of Christ in 1974.  He has been pastor of the Memorial Drive Church of Christ, Tulsa, Oklahoma, for the past 39 years. He and wife, Mary, have three children who are also involved in Christian Ministry. Rev. Rush has a long standing association with the St. Louis Cardinal Baseball team, including playing at their Legends Camps and being spiritual mentor to a number of current and former players and coaches. October 2 will be a special “Baseball Sunday”.  Everyone is invited to wear their favorite Team Jersey, or to simply come-as-you-are. Please help welcome Terry Rush back to Kahoka. Services start at 10:30 a.m. Everyone is welcome.

Conservation Considerations – Archery Season 2016

by MDC Agent Michael Collins

Fall is right around the corner and so is everyone’s favorite time of the year. Between the ‘Friday Night Lights,’ Football Sunday, cooler weather, bonfires and last but not least, pursuing that trophy buck that you’ve been watching all year – this is truly a special time of the year. Archery season is here and it’s time to wipe the dust off of your hunting gear, check to see if everything is up to par and to hone your archery skills.

This year, the dates for Archery Deer and Turkey Season are September 15 through November 11, and November 23 through January 15. The legal shooting hours are from one-half hour before sunrise, to one-half hour after sunset. During this season, hunters may use longbows, compound bows, hand-held string releasing devices, atlatls, recurve bows of any draw weight, and crossbows. Yes, crossbows, too. Beginning this year, hunters are now allowed to hunt deer and turkey with a crossbow. In the past, hunters needed a hunting methods exemption in order to use one – however, this is no longer the case. Your archery equipment may be outfitted with any illuminated sights, scopes and quickpoint sights. Hunting with the aid of an artificial light, possession or use of night vision or thermal imagery devices, use of any sighting device that casts a beam of light on game, and use of electronic calls for deer and turkey or through the use of bait is illegal and will result in a citation. After harvesting a deer or turkey, hunters are required to notch the month and day of harvest, along the margins of their permit. Hunters are also required to keep their permits with them at all times while hunting.

The season limits are as follows: Hunters may harvest two turkeys of either sex and both may be taken on the same day, may not exceed the limit of 2 antlered deer (all seasons combined), and can fill any number of Archery Antlerless Deer permits in all counties except Iron, Reynolds, Butler, Scott, New Madrid, Mississippi, Dunklin and Pemiscot counties.

As always the Missouri Department of Conservation encourages you to hunt, fish, trap and enjoy the great outdoors. Missourians play a great role in driving the conservation of our wildlife resources through generations of outdoor tradition – for now and more to come. Be safe and good luck out there!

For more information go to mdc.mo.gov, see the 2016 Fall Deer & Turkey pamphlet, contact the Northeast Regional Office or contact Conservation Agent Michael Collins at (660) 216-1374.

Roll Clouds

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Roll clouds were part of an amazing sunrise in Scotland County early Tuesday morning, September 13th.  A roll cloud is a low, horizontal, tube-shaped and relatively rare type of arcus cloud, a category of low cloud formations.  Roll clouds form near advancing cold fronts.  A downdraft from the advancing storm front can cause moist warm air to rise, cool below its dew point, and so form a cloud.  When this happens uniformly along an extended front, a roll cloud may form.  They differ from shelf clouds by being completely detached from a thunderstorm base or other cloud features.  They usually appear to be “rolling” about a horizontal axis.

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Former Pastors to Speak at First Christian Church Centennial Homecoming

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Phillip Gore and Tim Hawkins, former ministers of the Memphis First Christian Church, will be the speakers for the Sunday, October 2, morning worship service as the Church hosts Homecoming Services to celebrate the completion of the current church building (located on the corner of Jones and Main Streets) which was completed in 1916.

Gore, who grew up in Vandalia, preached his first sermon at age fifteen.  He graduated from Central Christian College of the Bible in Moberly in 1998 with a Bachelor of Arts in Christian Ministry.  In January, 1998, Gore became minister of Memphis First Christian Church where he served until 2000.  He is owner of Phillip Gore Design and designs web sites and creates digital art.  Gore and his wife Lanaya have four children. They currently live in San Antonio, Texas.

Hawkins, who served as youth minister and then senior minister at First Christian Church from 1994 to 1997, now resides in Boston, Massachusetts with his wife Stephanie and their four children.  He is Executive Director of Sojourn Collegiate Ministry and has been with the group since 2006 helping college and university students on their journey back to God.  Hawkins is pastor of Reunion Christian Church, Somerville location.

Former Memphis resident Terry Rush will speak at the closing service on Sunday afternoon (October 2).  Rush has served the Memorial Drive Church of Christ congregation in Tulsa, Oklahoma, since July of 1977, and also serves as the coordinator of the Tulsa Workshop. He is the author of seven books including, “The Holy Spirit Makes No Earthly Sense” and “The Miracle of Mercy”. Rush is an avid St. Louis Cardinal baseball fan and has a unique ministry of playing baseball in legends camps with former St. Louis Cardinal old-timers since 1984. He and his wife Mary have three adult children; their two sons are in full time ministry.

There will also be services on Friday, September 30, and Saturday, October 1, (see schedule of services ad published in this issue of the Democrat).  Special music for the services will be provided by the Gateway Singers and Paul Burton and Mercy’s Bridge Band, a country gospel group.

The Planning Committee for the Church Homecoming celebration will share historical information about First Christian Church as part of the three special services and host fellowship times with snacks, a barbecue, and luncheon for  the congregation, the community, and friends to enjoy.

Voters Reminded Last Day to Register to Cast November Election Ballot is October 12th

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Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves and the only way they could do this is by not voting. – Franklin D. Roosevelt

Those words by former President Roosevelt ring true, for those who chose not to vote as well as those who fail to properly register.

Scotland County Clerk Batina Dodge reminds prospective voters that the deadline to register to vote in the November 8th general election is October 12th.

Missouri law states that any citizen of the United States who is a resident of the State of Missouri and seventeen years and six months of age or older shall be entitled to register and to vote in any election which is held on or after his eighteenth birthday. (115.133, RSMo)

Prospective voters can register in person in the county clerk’s office in the Scotland County Courthouse. Dodge says individuals simply need to bring with them a copy of a birth certificate, a Native American tribal document, other proof of United States citizenship, a valid Missouri drivers license or other form of personal identification at the time of registration.

You can also register to vote online at the Missouri Secretary of State’s Office https://www.sos.mo.gov/.

An application may also be printed from the website or obtained at the county clerk’s office, completed and mailed to Scotland County Clerk’s Office, 117 S. Market, Street Suite 100, Memphis, MO 63555.

Not only is the application used to initially register to vote, but the short one page form also needs to be completed when voters move to other jurisdictions, or change their address on a current voter registration within the same jurisdiction, or change the voter’s name.

“If a voter needs to change his or her address or name, a new voter registration application must be filed with the local election authority,” said Dodge. “Please note that voters who do not update their addresses before election day may be sent to a different polling place depending on their new address.”

To check your voter registration, contact the office of Batina Dodge, Scotland County Clerk, at (660) 465-7027 or visit https://www.sos.mo.gov/.

Bushel Basket Open House Highlights Local Orchard’s Tasty Products

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by Andrea Brassfield

Richard Zimmerman and his family hosted an Open House for their business, The Bushel Basket, on Saturday, September 17th.  They also own Evergreen Sharpening and are located south of Memphis (take HWY 15 to the first gravel, then 1.5 miles west).

At the Bushel Basket, the Zimmermans are busy producing honey and growing apples, peaches and strawberries.

The family started their fruit orchard five years ago and have eight varieties of apples including Ginger Gold, Crimson Gala, Honey Crisp, Cortland, Crimson Crisp, Sun Crisp, Gold Rush and Pink Lady.  The Honey Crisp apples have already completed their growing season.  They also have two varieties of peaches including Baby Gold and Red Haven.  This is the second year of apple production and the first year for peach production.  The past two years, the winters were too harsh for the peach blossoms which are not quite as hardy as the apples.

Additionally, the Zimmermans have added more strawberry plants to their gardens and hope to have enough production next spring to begin selling.

Another part of their apple production includes custom washing, polishing and pressing not only for themselves but for other apple growers as well.  Their delicious apple cider is sold in gallon and half-gallon jugs.

Another tasty treat found at the Bushel Basket is honey and can be purchased in a variety of sizes.  The Zimmermans currently have four hives in production as well as neighbors who add to their honey supply.

Honey harvesting takes place twice a year, in August and October.  A brood box is the nest where the queen bee lays up to 2,000 eggs per day.  There are anywhere from 20,000 to 70,000 bees per colony with only one queen bee.

Another interesting fact about these amazing little creatures is that one ounce of honey would provide one bee with enough energy to fly around the world.  Also, it takes twelve bees their entire lifetime to collect one teaspoon of honey; 556 bees a lifetime to collect one pound of honey from approximately two million blossoms!  With this in mind, it is easy to see where the term “busy bee” comes from!!

The Bushel Basket is not the only family business owned by the Zimmermans; they also have owned and operated Evergreen Sharpening for the past seven years.  They sell Echo brand chainsaws, new chains, and some accessories.  They also sharpen chainsaw chains, saw blades, drill bits, kitchen knives, pinking shears and sewing scissors.

Mr. Zimmerman works full-time at Raytec LLC here in Memphis, however during his busier harvest times, he works four days a week in order to spend more time with his fruit orchards and honey production.

Business hours are Monday, Friday and Saturday all day and “by chance” on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Downing House to Host ‘Evening at the Museum – Candlelit Tour of the Past’

The Downing House Museum Complex received a $2,000 grant from the US Bank Corporation for the purpose of “providing opportunities to enhance the cultural and artistic lives of communities in which we live and work”.  Rhonda Mathes and Beverly Shelley are pictured presenting the grant, on behalf of US Bank, to Rhonda McBee, museum volunteer.  The grant is being used to purchase props, supplies and costumes for the upcoming “Evening at the Museum – A Candlelit Tour of the Past”.

The Downing House Museum Complex received a $2,000 grant from the US Bank Corporation for the purpose of “providing opportunities to enhance the cultural and artistic lives of communities in which we live and work”. Rhonda Mathes and Beverly Shelley are pictured presenting the grant, on behalf of US Bank, to Rhonda McBee, museum volunteer. The grant is being used to purchase props, supplies and costumes for the upcoming “Evening at the Museum – A Candlelit Tour of the Past”.

The Downing House Museum Complex, as part of the Scotland County Historical Society, recently received a $2000 grant from the US Bank Corporation. US Bank’s guidelines for the grant specified that the grant should be used to provide opportunities to enhance the cultural and artistic lives of communities in which we live and work. With this in mind, the Downing House Museum applied for the grant in order to provide a new cultural activity for our community. The grant will enable the Museum to purchase props, supplies and costumes to host a fall event at the location at 311 South Main Street in Memphis, Missouri – “EVENING AT THE MUSEUM – A Candlelit Tour of the Past”.

Join us for a unique evening walking tour of the museum complex while enjoying narratives from the past provided by fascinating residents from the Downing House, the Memphis Depot, the carriage house, summer kitchen and the Boyer House. Residents will be portrayed by volunteers from the Memphis Community Players and will include such characters as Ella Ewing, William G. Downing, Tom Horn, a barber in the barbershop, a blacksmith working in the carriage house, the ticket master at the Memphis Depot, kitchen servants, Dr. Keethler, a one room country school teacher, and a Civil War soldier, They will tell stories from their lives while living in the buildings of the museum complex. You will learn little known facts and details that will open your eyes to our local history and the residents that have had an impact on our community. Candlelit tours will be offered on Friday and Saturday October 14th & 15th and will begin at 7:00 p.m. The tour will last approximately 75 to 90 minutes and are $5 per person. Tickets will be available for purchase at the Memphis Theatre on October 5, 6, 7, 12, 13, 14, 2016 from 1:00 to 6:00 p.m. for $5 each or you may call the theatre during those times to reserve a ticket. The theatre phone number is (660) 465-2277.

Discover our local history, the mansion and buildings, and the architecture and artifacts that give the Downing House Museum Complex its distinctive character. It is a museum of Scotland County’s history with many stories to tell; tales of amazing local citizens complete with period furnishings and artifacts from our past. The Downing House was built in 1858 and was listed on the National Historic Register in 1979. It sits one block south of the town square on South Main Street in Memphis, Missouri.

Submitted by Rhonda McBee

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