Hermann Missouri 175 Year Anniversary 1836-2011

Hermann Missouri 175 Year Anniversary 1836-2011
Hermann Missouri 175 Year Anniversary 1836-2011

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Friday, June 24, 2011

Deal Flow Is DEAD: 'build it and they will come' theory of venture investing is like Expecting Back Taxes to Expire - TAXMAN The Beatles MUSIC VIDEO


Deal Flow Is Dead, Long Live Thesis Driven Investing

“Deal flow” has long been regarded as the lifeblood of venture capital and the primary point of competitive differentiation between venture firms.   To this end, it’s not uncommon to hear venture firms publicly boast about this or that proprietary source of deal flow or to hear limited partners studiously inquire about which firm has the highest quality deal flow.  While deal flow undoubtedly remains an important part of venture capital, changes in the venture industry are making deal flow far less important and rapidly making deal flow-centric business models unsustainable for all but a few venture firms.
Build It And They Will Come
At its heart, the deal flow-centric view of venture world is premised on a passive approach to venture investing that essentially subscribes to a “build it and they will come” theory of venture investing.  To grossly, but not inaccurately, simplify this view: all it takes to have a successful venture firm is to open an office on Sand Hill Road, stock the office with well known/connected former operators/financiers, wait for the entrepreneurs to come flocking to your door and then simply invest in the best teams with the best ideas.
It’s as if Venture Capitalists were Grizzly Bears: Just stake out a good position in the middle of the best salmon run, watch the fish go by, and occasionally swat the best looking fish out of the air.  In this model VCs are cast as true renaissance men, capable of doing a communications equipment deal one day and an alternative energy deal the next.  They have no need to be experts in specific industries but instead pass judgment on the quality and pedigree of start-up teams with the belief that their connections and experience can help get any company off the ground.
This flow-centric business model made a tremendous amount of sense when the venture industry was relatively small and immature.  Back then, there were only a handful of competitors and funds were relatively modest in size.  For example, in 1980 there were only 183 venture capital firms and each firm had an average of only $41.6M under management.  Given this, as well as the immaturity of venture capital as an asset class in 1980, it’s probably safe to say that venture capital in 1980 was a true “buyer’s market” with more demand for capital than supply.   Perhaps more importantly, the investable landscape for venture capital, particularly technology venture capital, was both “thin” and “shallow”.  It was “thin” in that there were only a few sectors one could invest in.  It was “shallow” in that each sector was quite small and often only composed of a few companies.
In this context, a passive deal flow-oriented business model made a tremendous amount of sense.  Not only was there more than enough deals to go around, but the chances of seeing any given deal prior to funding were quite high.  In addition, it did not make sense to develop expertise in specific domain areas because there simply weren’t enough new deals in a given space to justify such a concentration.
It’s Not Your Father’s Venture Capital Anymore
Fast forward 20 years and the world has changed dramatically.  There are now over 3,300 venture firms managing an average of $280M each with a total of $265BN in capital under management.   What’s more, the investable venture landscape is vastly larger and more intricate; it is now both wide and deep.  Using the NASDAQ’s market capitalization as a proxy, the investable market has expanded by a full order of magnitude in just the last 15 years.  Areas of the market that didn’t exist to any substantial extent 15 or 20 years ago, such as the internet, information security, and networking, are now large enough to easily produce enough quality deals to not only gainfully employ the full productive efforts of a single partner, but of even an entire firm. 
To go back to the Grizzly bears, it’s as if the population of bears on the river has increased by almost 20X and not only are there now lots of bears both upstream and downstream, but there are lots of bears specializing in particular types of fish.   The only thing that is flowing by the average bear is unwanted leftovers from someone else’s catch.
For all but a few firms, the dramatic increase in the scope, complexity and competitive intensity of the venture business makes a deal flow-based business model, no matter how good one’s networks or connections, unsustainable because the risk of adverse selection has become so great and in those rare circumstances that a good deal actually makes it into the public domain, intense competition is likely to drive pricing up to a point where the good deal becomes bad because it's just too expensive.  Net, net the cold reality is that the venture business is now clearly and permanently a seller’s market.
Exceptions To the Rule
That said, there are probably two classes of firms that can still get by with a deal-flow oriented operating model including:
  1. The Best of The Best:  There are a few firms that have been in business so long and have been so successful that they can sustain a deal-flow based operating model.    They have a large amount of very high-quality incoming deal flow and even when they find themselves in a competitive situation their reputation usually enables them to win the deal.  This is not the top quartile of venture funds (825) or even the top decline (330), it is just a handful of firms that have such presence and brand that they can rise above the fray.  Even though they are capable of sustaining a deal flow based operating model, many of them won’t because they realize that they simply don’t have the scope necessary to see every deal worth doing.
  2. Big Fish in Small Ponds:  70% of the venture capital under management in the US in concentrated in just three states: California, New York, and Massachusetts.  Outside of these three areas, local venture capital is often hard to come by and the market looks much more like the “thin and shallow” national market of 1980.  VCs in regional markets with very strong local reputations can be reasonably confident that they will see pretty much every deal worth seeing in their area and every entrepreneur in the area knows that these are the “go to” firms.  For example, my former partner Brad Feld (who has a great blog of his own) is “Da Man” in Boulder Colorado and there’s probably not a deal in the Boulder/Denver area that he doesn’t get to see.   If Brad wanted to, he could probably just sit back and wait for deals to come to him all day (he doesn't) and still have a viable business.
The Party’s Over
For the rest of the industry, deal-flow based business models are now unsustainable thanks to two simple facts: 1. The venture industry simply is too big and too competitive for any firm to sit back wait for deals to come to them.  2. There is so much money in the industry now that any firm that is waiting for “hot” deal flow will likely find itself in the midst of a ruinous bidding war.
A favorite example of this situation is the social networking space.  The poster child of that space, Friendster, generated a true frenzy amongst VCs.  Friendster ultimately was invested in by two top-tier VCs but those VCs paid dearly for the honor, despite their brands, thanks the “seller’s market” that exists for hot VC deals in markets with an abundant capital.
Thesis Driven Investing
In such a competitive and complex environment the most promising way for VCs to ensure themselves of rising above the tide is to move from a passive deal-flow based approach to a proactive thesis driven investment approach.  This approach stresses taking the initiative to develop an investment thesis based on focused expertise and then using that investment thesis as the basis for a directed deal acquisition campaign designed to either ferret out those existing start-ups that fit into this investment thesis or to help create new companies that can take advantage of an identified opportunity.
In this model, VCs do not passively sit back and let deals come to them, but they go and out and “turn over rocks” actively looking for deals that fit their investment thesis in a particular space.    VCs, even ones with no brands and experience, can compete with this strategy due to two simple facts:  1. Entrepreneurs respect VCs that understand their market space/business. 2.  Entrepreneurs rarely refuse to talk with VCs that proactively call them and tell them that they are potentially interested in investing in their business.  The goal is not to wait for companies to come and ask for money, but to find good companies in good spaces and then try to find a way to put money into them when appropriate.
Pick Your Poison
Many GPs and LPs believe such thesis-driven investing to be more risky than traditional deal-flow driven investing because it requires firms to make two bets instead of just one in that firms must first bet on a general thesis and then bet on a company that matches that thesis.  This means that if the thesis is wrong, a whole crop of investments could turn out poorly.    From this perspective, why take the risk of getting the first part wrong?
The problem with this criticism is that it pre-supposes that the old deal-flow based approach remains viable.  This pre-supposition may have been valid 20 years ago but it is now no longer valid thanks to the huge risks that deal-flow based business models face in terms of scope management, adverse selection and competitive pricing.   The belief that deal-flow remains king in VC is therefore a dangerously outdated perspective on the venture industry that is no longer relevant for all but a handful of firms.
Retooling Required
For Venture Capital firms, the industry’s shift from deal-flow to thesis driven investing has many practical implications.  First, firms must place greater emphasis on developing investment theses and proactively calling on companies as opposed to developing networks of deal-flow relationships.  That’s not to say that deal-flow relationships will become unimportant, just that they are now relatively less important.  Firms must also become more specialized, either at the firm or partner level, so that they can develop the industry insight and expertise necessary to exploit investment theses within specific sectors.   Finally, firms may have to adopt a more systematized and professional process for not only developing investment theses but for executing on those theses once developed.
Making these changes won’t guarantee investment success but they will enable firms to compete effectively in a highly competitive venture capital market that is dramatically different from the market of 20 and even 10 years ago. 

A Little tune for the Noodle Tax Dodgers!!!


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4th of July plans for City of Hermann, Mo. covered by Police Chief

by: Frank Tennant
Chief of Police
City of Hermann, Mo.

The activities kick off on Monday, July 4th with the Independence Day parade at 4:00 p.m.  The parade route will be the same as in previous years, starting at W 8th Street and Washington Street weaving through town and ending at 1st and Gutenberg Street.  The Hermann Police Department and assorted volunteers will have the streets temporarily blocked to traffic during the parade which is expected to last approximately an hour.  Attendees may observe the parade along Washington St, W 6th Street, Market Street, E 4th Street, Schiller St and W 1st Street.

The Municipal Band will be performing at the Amphitheater in the 400 block of Gutenberg Street beginning at 7:30 pm until just prior to the fireworks display at River Front Park which will begin at dark.

We are continuing to monitor the rising Missouri River.  Should the water rise to a level that would interfere with the event, Tourism Director Jim Grebing has been working on an alternate location for the event.  The river is predicted to begin a slow rise on Monday, June 27 to a level about a foot over flood stage by Friday, July 1st.  That water level is not expected to impact the event which will then go on as advertised in the river front park.  Should the water level change drastically, the event would be moved to the alternate location, the details of which are still being addressed at this time.  We will make a concerted effort to notify everyone as the details are ironed out should a change of location become necessary.

On the river front, like the last couple of years, Wharf Street will be closed to all vehicle traffic from Gutenberg Street to Schiller Street for the event.  River Front Park and Wharf Street will be closed for vehicles except for the event organizers and vendors after 5:00 pm.  There will be concessions made for those with handicapped parking permits to access the appropriate parking places within the park on a first come basis.  Attendees are encouraged to bring their lawn chairs and set anywhere along the south side of Wharf Street or in River Front Park to enjoy the show.

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Peter Falk Dies at 83: Columbo VIDEO Fantastic Interrogation Example


Jun 24, 2011
Peter Falk, TV's rumpled Columbo, has died


NEW YORK (AP) -- The best way to celebrate Peter Falk's life is to savor how Columbo, his signature character, fortified our lives.
Thanks to Falk's affectionately genuine portrayal, Lt. Columbo established himself for all time as a champion of any viewer who ever felt less than graceful, elegant or well-spoken.
Falk died Thursday at age 83 in his Beverly Hills, Calif., home, according to a statement released Friday by family friend Larry Larson. But Columbo lives on as the shining ideal of anyone with a smudge on his tie, whose car isn't the sportiest, who often seems clueless, who gets dissed by fancy people.
As a police detective, Columbo's interview technique was famously disjointed, with his inevitable awkward afterthought ("Ahhh, there's just one more thing...") that tried the patience of his suspect as he was halfway out the door.
Columbo was underestimated, patronized or simply overlooked by nearly everyone he met - especially the culprit.

And yet Columbo, drawing on inner pluck for which only he (and an actor as skilled as Falk) could have accounted, always prevailed. Contrary to all evidence (that is, until he nailed the bad guy), Columbo always knew what he was doing.
Even more inspiring for viewers, he was unconcerned with how other people saw him. He seemed to be perfectly happy with himself, his life, his pet basset, Dog, his wheezing Peugeot, and his never-seen wife. A squat man chewing cigars in a rumpled raincoat, he stands tall among TV's most self-assured heroes.
What viewer won't take solace forever from the lessons Columbo taught us by his enduring example?
Columbo - he never had a first name - presented a refreshing contrast to other TV detectives. "He looks like a flood victim," Falk once said. "You feel sorry for him. He appears to be seeing nothing, but he's seeing everything. Underneath his dishevelment, a good mind is at work."
On another occasion, he described Columbo as "an ass-backwards Sherlock Holmes."

"As a person, he was like Columbo. He was exactly the same way: a great sense of humor, constantly forgetting things," said Charles Engel, an NBCUniversal executive who worked with Falk on "Columbo" and was his neighbor and longtime friend.
He remembered Falk as a "brilliant" actor and "an amazingly wonderful, crazy guy," and said a script was in place for a two-hour "Columbo" special, but Falk's illness made the project impossible. In a court document filed in December 2008, Falk's daughter Catherine Falk said her father was suffering from Alzheimer's disease.
Somehow fittingly, Falk - the perfect choice to play Columbo - failed to be the first choice. Instead, the role was offered to easygoing crooner Bing Crosby. Fortunately, he passed.
With Falk in place, "Columbo" began its run in 1971 as part of the NBC Sunday Mystery Movie series, appearing every third week. The show became by far the most popular of the three mysteries, the others being "McCloud" and "McMillan and Wife."
Falk was reportedly paid $250,000 a movie and could have made much more if he had accepted an offer to convert "Columbo" into a weekly series. He declined, reasoning that carrying a weekly detective series would be too great a burden.

NBC canceled the three series in 1977. In 1989 ABC offered "Columbo" in a two-hour format usually appearing once or twice a season. The movies continued into the 21st century. "Columbo" appeared in 26 foreign countries and was a particular favorite in France and Iran.
Columbo's trademark: an ancient raincoat Falk had once bought for himself. After 25 years on television, the coat became so tattered it had to be replaced.
Falk was already an experienced Broadway actor and two-time Oscar nominee when he began playing Columbo. And, long before then, he had demonstrated a bit of Columbo-worthy spunk: at 3, he had one eye removed because of cancer.
Then, when he was starting as an actor in New York, an agent told him, "Of course, you won't be able to work in movies or TV because of your eye." And after failing a screen test at Columbia Pictures, he was told by studio boss Harry Cohn that "for the same price I can get an actor with two eyes."
But Falk prevailed, even before "Columbo," picking up back-to-back Oscar nominations as best supporting actor for the 1960 mob drama "Murder, Inc." and Frank Capra's last film, the 1961 comedy-drama "Pocketful of Miracles."
Paying tribute, actor-comedian Michael McKean said, "Peter Falk's assault on conventional stardom went like this: You're not conventionally handsome, you're missing an eye and you have a speech impediment. Should you become a movie star? Peter's correct answer: Absolutely.
"I got to hang with him a few times and later worked a day with him on a forgettable TV movie," McKean went on, calling Falk "a sweet, sharp and funny man with a great soul. Wim Wenders called it correctly in 'Wings of Desire': He was an angel if there ever was one on Earth."
"There is literally nobody you could compare him to. He was a completely unique actor," said Rob Reiner, who directed Falk in "The Princess Bride."
"His personality was really what drew people to him. ... He had this great sense of humor and this great natural quality nobody could come close to," Reiner said. Falk's work with Alan Arkin in "The In-Laws" represents "one of the most brilliant comedy pairings we've seen on screen."
Peter Michael Falk was born in 1927, in New York City and grew up in Ossining, N.Y., where his parents ran a clothing store.
After serving as a cook in the merchant marine and receiving a masters degree in public administration from Syracuse University, Falk worked as an efficiency expert for the budget bureau of the state of Connecticut.
He also acted in amateur theater and was encouraged to become a professional by actress-teacher Eva Le Gallienne.
An appearance in "The Iceman Cometh" off-Broadway led to other parts, among them Josef Stalin in Paddy Chayefsky's 1964 "The Passion of Josef D." In 1971, Falk scored a hit in Neil Simon's "The Prisoner of Second Avenue," Tony-nominated for best play.
Falk made his film debut in 1958 with "Wind Across the Everglades" and established himself as a talented character actor with his performance as the vicious killer Abe Reles in "Murder, Inc."
Among his other movies: "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World," "Robin and the Seven Hoods," "The Great Race," "Luv," "Castle Keep," "The Cheap Detective" and "The Brinks Job."
Falk also appeared in a number of art-house favorites, including "Wings of Desire" (in which he played himself as a former angel), and the semi-improvisational films "Husbands" and "A Woman Under the Influence," directed by his friend John Cassavetes.
"Today we lost someone who is very special and dear to my heart. Not only a wonderful actor but a very great friend," said Gena Rowlands, who co-starred with Falk in the latter film, and was married to the late Cassavetes.
Falk became prominent in television movies, beginning with his first Emmy for "The Price of Tomatoes" in 1961. His four other Emmys were for "Columbo."
He was married to pianist Alyce Mayo in 1960; they had two daughters, Jackie and Catherine, and divorced in 1976. The following year he married actress Shera Danese. They filed for divorce twice and reconciled each time.
When not working, Falk spent time in the garage of his Beverly Hills home. He had converted it into a studio where he created charcoal drawings. He took up art in New York when he was in the Simon play and one day happened into the Art Students League.
He recalled: "I opened a door and there she was, a nude model, shoulders back, a light from above, buck-ass naked. The female body is awesome. Believe me, I signed up right away."
Falk is survived by his wife Shera and his two daughters.
Associated Press Television Writers Lynn Elber and David Bauder, Entertainment Writer Anthony McCartney and former writer Bob Thomas in Los Angeles contributed to this report.
Columbo Fantastic Interrogation Example

Peter Falk Salutes Frank Capra at AFI Life Achievement Award


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Missouri River Flood: VIDEO Flyover Atchison and Holt County, Mo. June 23, 2011

NW Missouri: Missouri River Flood, Flyover Atchison and Holt County June 23, 2011

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Alligator Grabs Patrol Car, Hangs On WEB VIDEO


Gator Grabs Patrol Car, Hangs On

A Tampa Bay deputy responding to a call of an alligator in a residential neighborhood got up close and personal with the reptile.

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Missouri River Flood: Brownville, Mo. Large levee breach 3 m upstream of Cooper station, identical twin to Fukushima

Cooper Nuclear Power Plant - General Electric Mark 1 Boiling Water Reactor identical twin to Fukushima Daiichi Units 1 to 4 Credit: Nebraska Watchdog
VIDEO: Close-Up Missouri River Flooding at Cooper Nuclear Plant in Nebraska June 22, 2011



Two More Levee Breaches Reported in Missouri June 24, 2011

Missouri River Federal Levee L-550 breached Thursday evening, June 23, at about 8:45 p.m. near Watson, Mo. The levee has been overtopping for several days at a different location. The breach is located about 2 miles downs stream of the Nishnabotna River. The local sponsor and authorities are notifying local residents.

Holt County Levee 9 near Forest City, Mo., breached also early Friday morning, June 24.

Levee Breach Downriver Means Reprieve For Nuclear Plant

June 24, 2011
Brownville, NE - (AP) - The failure of a Missouri River levee in northwest Missouri offered a brief reprieve Friday from flooding near the Cooper nuclear power plant in southeast Nebraska, although officials expect the waterway to rise back up to a threatening level.
The National Weather Service said the river dropped more than a foot at Brownville to 43.1 feet Friday morning after the breach Thursday evening upstream in northwest Missouri. Before the breach, the river had been 44.8 feet deep at Brownville.
The river would have to rise to 46.5 feet before it reaches Cooper, which is owned by the Nebraska Public Power District, but the plant would be shut down as a precaution if the river reached 45.5 feet.
NPPD spokesman Mark Becker said the plant continues to operate at full capacity.
The weather service predicted that the river at Brownville will rise over the weekend back to a similar level to earlier this week.
The Army Corps of Engineers predicts it will rise another 3 to 5 inches on top of that by early next week.
The corps has been releasing water from dams upstream where heavy spring rain and snow melt have bloated the waterway, causing a rapid rise in the river elsewhere. Releases at Gavins Point Dam in South Dakota hit 160,000 cubic feet of water per second on Thursday, and the corps planned to continue releasing water at that rate until at least August.
The river is expected to remain 5 to 7.5 feet above flood stage in Nebraska and Iowa throughout the summer, and water levels could swell more than 10 feet above flood stage at places in Missouri.
Experts with the National Weather Service and the corps have said that levee breaches will provide only temporary decreases in water levels because there is still so much water flowing downstream. Once the water flowing through a failed levee spreads out, the pressure will build up and the river will rise again.
NPPD officials have been monitoring river levels closely during the flooding, and they have already brought in more than 5,000 tons of sand to build barricades protecting the Cooper plant and its access roads. Some internal doorways have also been barricaded with flood gates to protect equipment.
Last Sunday, Cooper nuclear plant sent a low-level alert to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, called a "notification of unusual event," because of the rising river, so regulators are also watching the situation closely.
Nebraska's other nuclear power plant, Fort Calhoun, issued a similar notice on June 6. That power plant, about 20 miles north of Omaha, remains shut down because of concerns about the water level there.
The river at Blair, near Fort Calhoun, was 32.5-feet-deep Friday morning, which is 6 feet above flood stage, causing moderate flooding of low-lying areas. The Omaha Public Power District, which owns Fort Calhoun, said a series of protective barriers have stopped the advance of floodwaters and protected the nuclear plant.
Nuclear Regulatory Commission officials say both NPPD and OPPD have taken appropriate measures to protect their nuclear power plants.
Nebraska Public Power District: www.nppd.com
Omaha Public Power District: www.oppd.com
Nuclear Regulatory Commission: www.nrc.gov


Large levee breach 3 miles up from Cooper Nuclear Station. Mandatory evacs

  • June 24, 2011


Around 9:00 Thursday night, a large levee breach occurred at Brownville, Mo. three miles upstream from Nebraska's Cooper Nuclear Station, the atomic reactor identical twin to Fukushima Daiichi Units 1 to 4.  Mills County issued a mandatory evacuation order, are disconnecting power today, and say the General Electric Mark 1 Boiling Water Reactor of Cooper Nuclear Plant that has been under an  "unusual event declaration," is not threatened.  NRC Chairman is heading to the site.
“This is a large breach and water will be moving rapidly. Persons should stay out of this area if previously evacuated due to danger,” the Atchison County Emergency Management office said in a prepared statement according to Nebraska State Paper.
"It happened so quick that they were concerned that they may not be able to escape. The water was coming through fast and hard. … We're not sure what the size of the break is so far," reported Mark Manchester, deputy emergency management director for Atchison County, Mo., Thursday evening." (Lincoln Journal Star)
The World-Herald News Service reported that Mills County issued a mandatory evacuation order Thursday for residents in part of the county.
“The safety of the residents in those areas is our greatest concern, and we needed to take action,” said Sheri Bowen, public information officer for Mills County Emergency Management. (World-Herald)
Iowa Army National Guard, the levee and drainage district staff and emergency management personnel are patrolling the levee.
CNN reported Thursday, "It was catastrophic flooding from Japan's March 11 tsunami that knocked out cooling systems at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, resulting in three reactors melting down and producing the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl.
"This year's Midwestern flooding has also led to a spate of rumors about the Fort Calhoun plant that Omaha Public Power and the NRC have been trying to knock down."
Although the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has stated that both the Cooper Nuclear Station at Brownville and the Fort Calhoun plant remain safe, NRC Chairman Gregory Jaczko will soon visit the state a spokesman for Senator Ben Nelson (NE-D) confirmed to Nebraska Watchdog.

Two More Levee Breaches Reported in Missouri
June 24, 2011

Missouri River Federal Levee L-550 breached Thursday evening, June 23, at about 8:45 p.m. near Watson, Mo. The levee has been overtopping for several days at a different location. The breach is located about 2 miles downs stream of the Nishnabotna River. The local sponsor and authorities are notifying local residents.

Holt County Levee 9 near Forest City, Mo., breached also early Friday morning, June 24.___________________________________________ _____________________________________ . .

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OPEN BORDERS: Mexican troops cross into the United States


Mexican troops cross into the United States at Bridge Two

Laredo, Texas


A convoy of three military trucks loaded with Mexican soldiers crosses the border at Bridge Number Two clearly violating international law.

It happens as Customs and Border Protection inspectors try to figure out what to do.

A CBP spokesperson says they got on the phone with Mexican authorities after being alerted that the military trucks were heading their direction loaded down with soldiers and weapons.

Mexican leaders say the soldiers, who had just been deployed to Nuevo Laredo, didn't know the area, got lost and then made their way through Bridge Two.

It's important to note that CBP did not tell us about the potentially serious situation. It came from another law enforcement agency.

Some callers to our newsroom were upset inspectors allowed the Mexican military to get so close to all those inspection booths over at Bridge Number Two.

Click Here to Read More.

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Missouri River Flood: Minot North Dakota officials recommend more evacuations RAW AERIAL VIDEO


N.D. officials recommend more evacuations as flooding threat to city grows

Associated Press / June 24, 2011 

MINOT, N.D. — The threat of flooding for North Dakota’s fourth-largest city worsened yesterday, as accelerated releases from an upstream dam into the Souris River led officials to recommend more evacuations and close a major bridge.

As many as 10,000 residents were evacuated a day earlier from neighborhoods nearest the Souris, which cuts through the heart of Minot. It wasn’t immediately clear how many more people were affected by the new advisory.
“The bottom line is they’re just trying to get everybody out of the area where they think the property is going to be inundated,’’ said National Guard Captain Dan Murphy.
Swollen by heavy rains and snowmelt far upstream, the Souris has risen rapidly since the weekend. Yesterday, officials accelerated the release of water from the Lake Darling dam and said that could raise the river 2 to 3 feet higher than earlier projections.
Officials also announced the closure of the Broadway Bridge, shutting down a key north-south artery in the city. Major traffic jams were reported as officials asked residents not to travel north unless of an emergency.
Kathy Sivertson, 52, who lives a block above the initial evacuation zone, took the news in stride, moving her belongings out of her basement but saying she’d stay in her house until “they kick me out.’’
Meanwhile, Leon Delker, 55, who lives nine blocks from the river, brought in a survey crew to plug in the new numbers and determine the water was likely to go 3 feet up on his front door. He planned to clear out everything but the American flag in front of his home and “stay out until this thing is over.’’

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President's List Announced: East Central College 2011 Spring Semester


East Central College in Union announced that 174 students have been named to the President's List for the 2011 spring semester.
The presidents list recognizes ECC students who have shown high academic performance during the past semester.
Students were are put on the President's List for obtaining grade point averages of 3.85 to 4.00 this spring. We have the list alphabetized by region below.

Lucinda Brennecke
Kathryn Caputo
Katie Nadler

Katie Babb
Andrea Brockmann
Marissa Jacobs

Kelsi Withouse

Megan Heil

Jonathan Stith

Daniellle Herrington

Michael Cornman
Christie Fritz
Lisa Gargus
Jackline Pennington
Maggie Rennick
Amanda Robertson
Teddy Walker
Hannah Watkins

Shelby Bach
Samantha Mitchell
Lindsay Meyer

Marvin Nash

Lisa Patterson

Jonathan Jacobi
Rodney Musgrave
Amanda Plumb
Timothy D. Schaeffer

Corey Gurnow
Jesse Hofstetter
Joshua Jackson
Brooke Brenton

Tina Brendel
Matthew Kassebaum
Susan Kassebaum
Amy Ketterer
Megan Trout

Mary Engemann
Vicky Finder
Judy Gross
Joni Jarvis
Rebecca Meyer
Mary Parsons
Terri Renfrow

Jessica Wieberg

Rachel Clark

New Haven:
Amanda Aichholz
Natasha Matthews
Teresa McNearney

Tyler Ahring
Vincent Bohl
Travis Brecheen
Amanda Jensen
Christina King

Stephanie Baumgarth
Timothy Hanify
James Reed
Ramon Rutledge

Rebecca Litzinger

Melissa Hagedorn
Lacey Lackman
Kelly Clover
Richard Kiefer

Chauntel Atchley
Ryan Baldwin
Megan Bruno
Ross Creager
Katelynn Ford
Ashlea Harper
Eric Hartline
Marie Haug
Rachel Hawley
Kylie Jordan
Brett Malloch
Monty McBroom
Shannon Russie
Harley Skyles
Kasey Sloan

Kyle Bauer
Darian Holtmeyer
Joshua Lottmann

Andriea L. Knaack
Jason Sercl
Jie Zeng
St. Clair:
Emily Borah
Mary Bye
Stephanie Crane
Justin Garrett
Chelsea Gordon
Christina Johnston
Mark Mizzell

St. James:
Jessica Gray
Richard Kemper
Krishanne Laster
Jeremy Ruwwe
James Grus

Mary Cummings
Jacqueline Dilg
Melinee Mabe
Sarah Sanders
Gregory Walls

Tracy Brooks
Tamara Casey
Jonathan Cordz
Matthew Gilman
Brittany Gollaher
Jessica Hylton
Richard Laubinger
Elizabeth McCarty
Christina Robertson
Kelci Schlueter
Meaghan Steuber
Katheryn Stroup
Morgan Watson
James Woolsey

Kasey Batterton
Thomas Beck
Timothy Brownlie
Kristen Butenhoff
Randy Copeland
Kent Jones
Connor Joyce
Anjanette Kandlbinder
Tisha Kelso
Katie Kotila
Robert Lofton
Cathey Pehle
Elizabeth Saleniuc
Samuel Thornton
Gretchen Winchester

Villa Ridge:
Teresa Berkel
Hannah Goodman
Jesse Goodman
Kelly Knehans
Paul Maurer-Batjer
Katherine Riley
Elizabeth Sang
Jaimie Sommer
Tess Summers
Patricia Swinford

Randal Darrah
Emily Heyne
Caroline Noe

Gerard Aholt
Steven Bossman
Joshua Bridgman
John Brinker
Kevin Browning
Jessica Buenemann
Jesse DeBoeuf
Jordan DeBoeuf
Robert Dunn
Steven Eckelkamp
Grant Fritz
Samantha Gildehaus
Daniel Gorrell
Daniel Hall
Moira Hayward
Kinsey Holdmeyer
Erika Hoss
James Kennedy
Cody King
Victoria Knight
George Miller
Alfred O’Bannon
Lauryn Overschmidt
Jessica Somers
Barbara Spradlin
Katherine Theissen
Ryan Theissen
Karla Voss
Michael Weiss
Jill Woods

Altus, Oklahoma:
Stephanie Straatmann

Terre Haute, IN:
Ambyr Echavez

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Missouri Business Growth Ranks Last in U.S. : Chamber of Commerce Released Report

June 24, 2011

A new report has been released by the United States Chamber of Commerce this week and according to that study Missouri trails every state in the United States in conditions for business growth.
The study ranked every state on 32 different metrics of competitiveness from fiscal issues to economic performance to taxes and regulation and more.
For each of the 32 diagnostics, the study ranks the top 10 states, next 15 and lowest 25. According to the study, Missouri was ranked the bottom 25 states in 24 of the 32 metrics. That was the worst performance of any state.
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly 50 thousand fewer Missourians have jobs today than when Governor Nixon took office. The unemployment rate is nearly one percentage point higher that when Nixon was sworn in. Currently there are almost 270,000 Missourians who cannot find work.
A similar study in 2010 ranked Missouri in the top 25 in 13 of the 35 categories.
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Narcotics Bust Near Child Daycare in Washington, Mo, 5 Arrested

June 25, 2011

Franklin County Narcotics enforcement was called to the Valley Trailer Park near a local child daycare facility in Washington around four o'clock this past Tuesday evening.
Police arrived at the residence that evening and talked to the owner of the trailer. According to the Narcotics Unit, the owner said police could search the house and that nobody else was at the residence.
Upon investigation of the home, police seized heroin, cocaine and other drug paraphernalia.
Excluding the owner, four other individuals found inside the house were all taken into custody and charged with drug distribution and or possession of narcotics. Two of the individuals had outstanding warrants and fugitive arrests were made.
20-year-old Pauline Ashby, 20-year-old Daniel Breeden and 23-year-old Tyler Wilson, all of Union were taken into custody. Narcotics officers also arrested 18-year-old Joseph Miller of Washington and 21-year-old Dustin Perkins out of Puxico.
Police were tipped off by an anonymous caller, who observed an unusual amount of traffic at all hours of the day and night.


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Obama Doublespeak Drawdown Speech: More Orwellian Lies - Only Bringing Home ONE THIRD of Afghanistan Troops


Obama’s Drawdown Speech: More Orwellian Lies

Kurt Nimmo
June 24, 2011

Obama begins his speech by claiming Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda attacked the United States on September 11, 2001. Like his predecessor, the government, and the corporate media, he does not offer any evidence but simply states it as fact. 

The events of September 11, 2011, were not included on Osama’s FBI poster. According to the FBI, Osama was wanted in connection with the August 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Tanzania and Kenya, not the attacks of September 11.
Rex Tomb, Chief of Investigative Publicity for the FBI, admitted years ago that there is no evidence connecting the Saudi to September 11. “The reason why 9/11 is not mentioned on Osama bin Laden’s Most Wanted page is because the FBI has no hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11.” Tomb said in 2006. “Bin Laden has not been formally charged in connection to 9/11.”
Obama states the nation was unified when it invaded Afghanistan in October of 2001. Polls revealed at the time that more than 90 percent of Americans supported the invasion. National polls, however, do not reveal that Americans were bamboozled through relentless propaganda by the government and the real reason for going into Afghanistan was kept secret. Americans were not told that the government had planned to invade the country prior to September 11, 2001.
They were also not told at the time that the United States had no intention of capturing Osama bin Laden and putting him on trial. Mullah Abdul Salam Zaeef, the Taliban ambassador to Pakistan, said two days after September 11 that the Taliban would turn Osama bin Laden over to the United States if it provided evidence of his complicity in the event, which Osama denied on two occasions, September 18 and the 28. In late September, General Hamid Gul, the former head of the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI), gave several interviews in which he stated Osama bin Laden was not responsible for 9/11. Gul said he believed the attacks were perpetrated by the Israeli Mossad and renegade elements within the US Air Force.
“Deliver to United States authorities all the leaders of al-Qaeda who hide in your land,” Bush ordered in his now infamous “Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists” speech of September 20. He ignored the Taliban offer to turn over Osama because there was no evidence against him.
The U.S. had a plan to invade the country and overthrow the Taliban “before the snows started falling in Afghanistan, by the middle of October at the latest,” the BBC reported in late 2001.
In 1995, Unocal signed an $8 billion deal with Turkmenistan to construct pipelines as part of a plan for two pipelines designed to transport oil and gas from Turkmenistan through Afghanistan and into Pakistan. The U.S. was working with the Taliban – a strident Wahhabi sect created through a collaboration between the CIA and Pakistan’s ISI following the Afghan civil war – to support the pipeline deal, but by the middle of 2001 they were threatening the Taliban with “carpets of bombs” if they didn’t accept a deal on their terms.
Obama then states that al-Qaeda had “escaped into Pakistan.” He does not bother to mention that the U.S. and the Pakistanis secretly airlifted Taliban and al-Qaeda fighters out of the besieged Taliban stronghold of Kunduz, in Northern Afghanistan, in late November of 2001. When word of the mission went public, then Defense Secretary Rumsfeld lied about it. “Oh, you can be certain of that. We have not seen a single – to my knowledge, we have not seen a single airplane or helicopter go into Afghanistan in recent days or weeks and extract people and take them out of Afghanistan to any country, let alone Pakistan,” he said during a Pentagon briefing. As Seymour Hersh noted at the time, the airlift would never have happened without Rumsfeld’s approval.
Obama claims the U.S. had to stay in Afghanistan so long because of a “resurgent Taliban,” but he says nothing about the fact that the U.S. was paying them off. “In a continuous flow of money, American tax dollars end up paying members of the Taliban and funding a volatile environment in Afghanistan,” Project Censored reported. “The funding of the insurgents, along with rumors of American helicopters ferrying Taliban members in Afghanistan, has led to widespread distrust of American forces. In the meantime, the US taxpayer’s dollar continues to fund insurgents to protect American troops so they can fight insurgents.”
In his speech, Obama pledges to bring home 10,000 soldiers by the end of this year and 23,000 more by the end of next summer, right before the 2012 presidential election. In other words, he has pledged to bring home the 30,000 troops he ordered into the country in December of 2009. According to Pentagon figures, there were 94,000 U.S. personnel in Afghanistan as of May compared with 92,000 in Iraq. Obama’s drawdown – heralded by a complaint corporate media as the beginning of the end of the war in Afghanistan – represents just over a third of all service members currently occupying the country.
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The United States never plans to leave Afghanistan or Iraq. It plans to expand its wars in Pakistan and now Yemen, Somalia and the Horn of Africa. Obama, as commander-in-chief, will head up an invasion of Libya tentatively planned for October. The wars will expand, not contract, until the empire collapses in upon itself from the stress and contradictions.
Barack Obama aka Barry Soetoro’s speech was simply more Orwellian Doublespeak directed at the plebs as the Republicans get ready to pick their establishment vetted presidential candidate – more than likely Rick Perry – and head into the dog and pony show next year.
For the New World Order, war is peace. Obama’s latest bout of polished teleprompter reading is merely another example of that.

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Katy Trail Ride For Die-Hard Bike Riders, 225 mile bicycle ride stop in Hermann Missouri


Katy Trail Ride cyclists stop in Columbia

Thursday, June 23, 2011

In the middle of a 225-mile bike ride from Clinton to St. Charles, some of the more than 300 participants in this year’s Katy Trail Ride took a detour into Columbia yesterday before they headed down to Jefferson City.
The annual event, which began Monday and is scheduled to wrap up tomorrow, attracts cyclists from around the country to take a long, scenic ride on the trail. The participants camp at various points along the trail and are treated to free meals provided by the Missouri State Parks Foundation and a wealth of rural Missouri scenery.
Yesterday’s weather was optimal for the participants — it was sunny, and temperatures were in the 70s. On a 51-mile leg of the ride between Boonville and Jefferson City, participants are given a chance to swing through Columbia, where many take in local landmarks or have lunch.
Vicki Curby, a Columbia resident who was not a participant in the ride, was at the Katy Trail entrance in McBaine yesterday to guide participants into Columbia. She called herself a de facto ambassador of the city as she took participants up the MKT Trail spur and showed them the bur oak near McBaine and took them to lunch at Flat Branch Pub and Brewing in downtown Columbia.
She said the detour into Columbia adds an additional 17 miles to the ride, but she said many participants express interest in seeing the city, especially the University of Missouri campus.
“I’m sorry I didn’t sign up this year,” Curby said.
Bill Graves, a 61-year-old resident of Omaha, Neb., stopped in McBaine to have a rest and munch on a banana before he kept rolling on to Jefferson City.
He said this was the fourth time he has participated in the ride, and he enjoys taking in some of the views of the river bluffs near McBaine.
Graves said he began to participate in the event about six years ago and enjoys meeting other participants along the way. He continues to participate in the event, he said, “to see if I can still do it.”
Melissa Spieker-Rebstock, who works for Cyclextreme in downtown Columbia, served as the bike mechanic for the ride’s participants. But she was faced with a conundrum before the she offered her services.
She and her fiance had scheduled their wedding for this week several months in advance, but when the opportunity to take part in the ride presented itself, she found it hard to pass up.
So she and her fiance, who participated in the ride, decided to take the ride and get married in Boonville on Tuesday. “It was a very big compromise on his part,” Spieker-Rebstock said.


Katy Trail Ride Applications Being Taken


For die-hard bicycle riders in the Ozarks, what about riding the nation's longest developed rail trail.  It's right here in Missouri.

Applications are now available for the 2011 Katy Trail Ride.
The 225 mile bike ride will be June 20th through 24th.

The ride will go from Clinton, Missouri to Saint Charles with about 40 to 60 miles traveled each day.

Stops are planned for Sedalia, Boonville, Jefferson City and Marthasville.

The event is limited to 300 riders and the deadline to register is May 21.

Applications for Annual Katy Trail Ride Available

For more information: 573-751-1010
JEFFERSON CITY, MO., MARCH 16, 2011 -- Applications are now available for bicyclists who would like to participate in the 2011 Katy Trail Ride, a ride on the nation's longest developed rail trail. The annual weeklong bicycle ride will take place June 20-24 and will travel across Missouri on Katy Trail State Park.

Sponsored by Missouri State Parks and the Missouri State Parks Foundation, this scenic bicycle ride will go approximately 225 miles from Clinton to St. Charles. The 2011 Katy Trail Ride will allow bicyclists to experience the entire Katy Trail State Park, which takes travelers through many of Missouri's rural communities, along open fields and near the Missouri River and its bordering bluffs. Daily mileage ranges from 37 to 68 miles. Stops will include Sedalia, Boonville, Jefferson City and Marthasville.

Participation is limited to 300 people and the deadline for registration is May 21. The registration fee includes breakfast and dinner daily, outdoor camping spaces each night, portable hot showers, gear shuttle, support stops and a Katy Trail Ride t-shirt and water bottle. Evening activities and daily trivia questions will highlight this five-day ride.

Transportation between St. Charles and Clinton on June 19 or June 24 will be available along with roundtrip transportation from Columbia to Clinton on June 19 and St. Charles to Columbia on June 24 for an additional fee. Day trips are available for bicyclists who would like to participate in this ride but do not have five days to spare.

The Katy Trail Ride takes 300 bicyclists through the many rural communities that border the trail, boosting the local economy. Riders purchase their lunch in a different community each day and several choose to stay in local hotels or bed and breakfasts rather than camp. Organizers also pay local establishments or organizations to provide breakfast and dinner daily to the participants and volunteers. Many businesses have developed in these small, rural communities since the trail was established and they rely on trail users for a big part of their business’ success.

For anyone who would like to help out with the ride, organizers are looking for friendly volunteers to load or drive the luggage truck, load bicycles, assist participants at the registration and information booths and support stops and serve as ride sweeps. Applications for the ride and volunteer information are available at katytrailstatepark.com.

For more information about the ride or for an application, call the Department of Natural Resources toll free at 800-334-6946 (voice) or 800-379-2419 (Telecommunications Device for the Deaf) or visit katytrailstatepark.com.


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Fluoride Brain Damage Link : AVOID USE IN CHILDREN: Researchers Discover prolonged use may cause significant damage to the nervous system


New Study: Fluoride Can Damage the Brain - Avoid Use in Children

JUNE 23, 2011

NEW YORK, June 21, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- "The prolonged ingestion of fluoride may cause significant damage to health and particularly to the nervous system," concludes a review of studies by researchers Valdez-Jimenez, et al. published in Neurologia (June 2011), reports New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation, Inc. (NYSCOF).
The research team reports, "It is important to be aware of this serious problem and avoid the use of toothpaste and items that contain fluoride, particularly in children as they are more susceptible to the toxic effects of fluoride." (1)
"Fluoride can be toxic by ingesting one part per million (ppm), and the effects are not immediate, as they can take 20 years or more to become evident," they write.
Most fluoridating U.S. public drinking water suppliers add fluoride chemicals to deliver 1 ppm fluoride (equal to about 1 milligram per quart) intending to benefit teeth and not to purify the water.
"Fluoridation clearly jeopardizes our children and must be stopped," says attorney Paul Beeber, President, NYSCOF.  "We can actually see how fluoride has damaged children's teeth with dental fluorosis; but we can't see the harm it's doing to their brains and other organs. No U.S. researcher is even looking," says Beeber.
Valdez-Jimenez, et al. describe studies that show fluoride induces changes in the brain's physical structure and biochemistry which affects the neurological  and mental development of individuals including cognitive processes, such as learning and memory.
"Fluoride is capable of crossing the blood-brain barrier, which may cause biochemical and functional changes in the nervous system during pregnancy, since the fluoride accumulates in brain tissue before birth," they write.*
Animal studies show fluoride's toxic brain effects include classic brain abnormalities found in patients with Alzheimer's disease, Valdez-Jimenez's team reports.
A different research team (Tang et al.) reported in 2008 that "A qualitative review of the studies found a consistent and strong association between the exposure to fluoride and low IQ." (Biological Trace Element Research)  (2)
In 2006, the U.S. National Research Council's (NRC) expert fluoride panel reviewed fluoride toxicology and concluded, "It's apparent that fluorides have the ability to interfere with the functions of the brain." And, "Fluorides also increase the production of free radicals in the brain through several different biological pathways. These changes have a bearing on the possibility that fluorides act to increase the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease." (3)
On April 12, 2010, Time magazine listed fluoride as one of the "Top Ten Common Household Toxins" and described fluoride as both "neurotoxic and potentially tumorigenic if swallowed." (4)
Phyllis Mullenix, Ph.D., was the first U.S. scientist to find evidence that fluoride damages the brain. She published her animal study in a respected peer-reviewed scientific journal in 1995 (5) and then was fired for doing so.(6)
Vyvyan Howard, M.D., Ph.D., a prominent fetal toxicologist and past-President of the International Society of Doctors for the Environment, said that current brain/fluoride research convinces him that we should stop water fluoridation.
Many communities have stopped or rejected fluoridation in the past several years  – the most recent is Fairbanks, Alaska.  This year, seven New York City Council Members co-sponsored legislation to stop fluoridation in NYC.
*Translated from Spanish using Google Translation
References:  groups.google.com/d/topic/fluoridation-news-releases/rD7pCONMcLw/discussion
Contact:  Paul Beeber, JD, 516-433-8882 nyscof@aol.com
Chemical Dumbing Down of America

Why is America so brainwashed by the corporate media? Why do we care more about American Idol and Dancing with the Stars than being harmed with thimerosal in our vaccinations and sodium fluoride in our water supply? Most Americans know nothing about these topics, but hopefully this video will shed some light on the issue. 

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