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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Nuclear Power: Bad Idea Turned Into Good Fun


The 190-foot-tall whirling aerial swing in the Wunderland Kalkar amusement park, near the German-Dutch border, claims an unusual distinction: It’s the only ride in the world constructed in a decommissioned nuclear cooling tower. In 1995, Dutch developer Hennie van der Most bought the defunct nuclear power plant from the German government. The site was supposed to house an SNR 300 fast breeder reactor, built from 1972 to 1985, but it never became fully operational.
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Visitors Enjoy a Nuclear Amusement Park in Germany

By Nick Stattpopsci.com
October 5, 2011
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After the sale, van der Most converted the plant site into a theme park and recreation center. Wunderland Kalkar sees an average of 600,000 visitors a year and boasts more than 40 attractions, including rock-climbing on the outer walls of the cooling tower.    
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VIDEO: MISSOURI THE BEAUTIFUL Take a patriotic tour of the Show Me State's natural wonders . . ========================================================== .

Important Note: FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted (©) material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available to advance understanding of ecological, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. It is believed that this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior general interest in receiving similar information for research and educational purposes. "Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use." . ________________________________________________________________________

Frank James Surrender, Never Convicted of a Crime, On this Date 1882 AUDIO STORY

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Surrender

by Bob Priddy on October 5, 2011

The two men spent the day strolling around town or lounging at the hotel.  They were waiting for a late afternoon appointment with the governor.  Their names on the hotel register read John Edwards, and B. F. Winfrey.  Edwards said he was from Sedalia and Winfrey claimed to be from Marshall.  Winfrey had just recently come to Missouri from Tennessee where people called him B. J. Woodson, but that wasn’t his real name either.
Late that afternoon, the governor called several state officials and newsmen to his office and showed them an important letter.  While the guests in the office were discussing the letter the two men strolled in.  The one whose name really was John Edwards introduced the other whose name was neither Winfrey nor Woodson.  “Governor Crittenden,” said Edwards, “I want to introduce you to my friend Frank James.”
AUDIO: Listen to program


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VIDEO: MISSOURI THE BEAUTIFUL Take a patriotic tour of the Show Me State's natural wonders . . ========================================================== .

Important Note: FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted (©) material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available to advance understanding of ecological, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. It is believed that this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior general interest in receiving similar information for research and educational purposes. "Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use." . ________________________________________________________________________

Missouri River Cleanup Towboat in Hermann

The River Cleanup towboat pushed into Hermann Monday evening with a sand flat trash barge and house barge for crew quarters preparing for a week of educational activities with local school children and a cleanup of the river on Saturday. 
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‘We All Live Downstream’

By Karen Cernich
emissourian.com
October 5, 2011

You may not pay any attention to the trash you see along the roads in your neighborhood or any of the streets around town, but those empty water bottles, soda cans, Styrofoam cups, plastic drinking straws and other bits of plastic that you see lying on the ground, forgotten, are ending up in the Missouri River.
Heavy rains and winds carry the trash from the streets into storm drains and creeks, which then empty into the Missouri River and eventually reach the oceans.
Steve Schnarr, program director with Missouri River Relief, “a grassroots, volunteer and equipment-based organization dedicated to reconnecting people to the Missouri River through hands-on river cleanups and education events,” describes it as “incidental trash,” or in other words, trash left behind by well-meaning people who just weren’t paying attention and are unaware of how their forgotten trash could end up polluting rivers and oceans.
Schnarr has seen plenty of incidental trash over the last 10 years as he and teams of volunteers have hauled ton after ton of trash from the Missouri. Last year alone the group pulled out 592 tons of trash.
Missouri River Relief will be in Washington next week to lead a series of events, including a hands-on educational workshop with local fourth-, fifth- and sixth-graders on Wednesday and Thursday, a fundraising dinner on the barge Thursday evening and a daylong cleanup on Saturday.
A river festival also will be held Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. (See story on 5C.)
It’s all part of the Big Muddy Clean Sweep, the keystone event marking Missouri River Relief’s 10th anniversary this year.
Schnarr is currently looking for volunteers to help with the cleanup here. People can contact him ahead of time by calling him at 573-289-2077 or emailing him at steve@riverrelief.org, or they can show up Saturday morning at 9 at the Washington riverfront.
Missouri River Relief has led cleanups in Washington several times before but this time will be a little different. The crew will be arriving by barge.
The River Cleanup towboat will push into town early next week with a sand flat that looks likes a giant dumpster, a house barge that features the crew’s quarters and kitchen, and a work flat which is simply a flat work area.
This week the boat is docked in Hermann. It arrived Monday evening for a week of activities that will end in a cleanup there on Saturday.
When it leaves headed for Washington, there are no plans to stop along the way, but Schnarr said if people in between Hermann and Washington are inspired to conduct their own cleanups in those places, they can leave the bagged trash at the bank, call him (573-289-2077) to give its location and the barge will stop to pick it up.
‘We Definitely See a Pattern’
At first glance, the river and its banks may look pretty clean, no trash in sight. But when you look closer, you begin to notice it.
Because of the flooding earlier this year, much of the trash has been pushed up into the woods along the banks, said Schnarr. During the clean up in Jefferson City last week, a crew found a slew of trash 150 yards into the woods.
Schnarr said he doesn’t usually get upset anymore at seeing all of the incidental trash. He picks it up and works that much harder at educating people about it.
“We definitely see a pattern,” he said. “Below urban areas where streams come into the Missouri River, we will see all of this plastic garbage, mostly general trash that gets washed into storm drains during rain events and end up in the Missouri.”
Not all of the trash comes from such innocent sources, Schnarr realizes. There are definitely people who intentionally dump things into the river — tires, carpet, old broken down refrigerators that would cost them $10 to place in a landfill, used motor oil . . .
“Anything that costs people money to dispose of are things we find in the river,” said Schnarr.
There are also fishermen and “partiers” on boats who toss trash — beer cans or bait containers — over the side of the boat instead of bringing it back to shore to dispose of properly.
Part of that mindset can be cultural, said Schnarr. It’s something people have always done and they don’t realize the harm it’s doing.
Why Clean It Up?
Regardless of how the trash gets to the river, Schnarr and his crew make it their business to clean it up for several reasons, beginning with the fact that trash just looks ugly, plain and simple.
“If the river is your playground, your place to get nourished by nature, you don’t want a bunch of trash lying around,” said Schnarr.
More than that, however, is that this trash is doing damage, he said. Birds, fish and other wildlife are getting tangled in it, or worse, mistaking it for food and eating it.
“Biologists have found fish that have been damaged by plastics because they get tangled up in it or have swallowed it,” said Schnarr. “It’s more of a problem than people realize. All of it eventually washes into the oceans . . . and we’re starting to find out some of the problems this floating waste is causing.”
There is an “abnormal concentration” of trash that has collected in one area of the Pacific Ocean where historically organic material collects, said Schnarr. Animals have come to this area to feed on that organic patch, which is now mixed largely with trash and broken bits of plastic.
“They die because their stomachs are filled up with these plastics,” said Schnarr.
Another reason to clean up the trash is the chemicals that the trash is releasing into the water.
“If you’ve ever smelled a tire, what you’re smelling is petro chemicals, and those are ending up in our water stream from dumped tires,” said Schnarr, noting it’s also common to find bottles full of waste oil dumped in the river.
In addition to getting all of these items out of the river, the cleanups are about educating people, said Schnarr.
“We’re not going to make any major changes to that (trash patch) with this, but a big part of what we do is education,” he said. “We want to open people’s eyes to the impact cities have on the Missouri River.
“One-sixth of the continental U.S. drains into the Missouri.”
The education workshops that Schnarr will be leading with local school groups will have two main points to get across — the scale of the river and that trash lying on their street will eventually end up in the river — that includes lost balls that rolled away never to be seen again.
“They end up in storm drains and then in the river,” said Schnarr, picking up a mud-covered tennis ball from one of the bags collected in Jefferson City last week.
“We all live downstream,” Schnarr remarked.



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VIDEO: MISSOURI THE BEAUTIFUL Take a patriotic tour of the Show Me State's natural wonders . . ========================================================== .

Important Note: FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted (©) material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available to advance understanding of ecological, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. It is believed that this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior general interest in receiving similar information for research and educational purposes. "Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use." . ________________________________________________________________________

Morrison Mo. Branch May Be Saved: Baucus offers Senate Bill to Save Post Office, keep rural offices open

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Baucus offers plan to save Post Office, keep rural offices open

By Pete Kasperowiczthehill.com
October 5, 2011
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Senate Finance Committee Chairman and deficit-reduction supercommittee member Max Baucus (D-Mont.) on Tuesday introduced legislation that would help the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) avoid bankruptcy and prevent the closure of rural post offices, including some in his home state.
"The Postal Service has serious budget troubles to tackle, and Congress has a responsibility to play its part," Baucus said. "This bill provides the life preserver the Postal Service needs to stay above water while we work together to find longer-term solutions to preserve the postal services and jobs Montanans depend on."
The USPS is facing a severe fiscal crisis because it is required to make a $5.5 billion pre-payment to a retiree health benefit fund, and has said it cannot make the payment. The USPS was originally scheduled to make that payment by Sept. 30, but the continuing spending resolution approved by the House this week extends that until Nov. 18.
The Baucus bill, S. 1649, would require the Office of Personnel Management to estimate how much the Postal Service has made in overpayments to the Federal Employee Retirement System and use those to make its payment to the health benefit fund. Baucus said some estimates put the overpayment at $6.9 billion, more than enough to make the payment.
The bill also includes language that prohibits the USPS from closing rural offices if there is not another post office within 10 miles. Baucus just this week complained to Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe that the USPS is planning to close three rural offices in Montana, a decision Baucus said was made without allowing for enough public input.
"It is clear that the Postal Service decided to close these post offices without sufficiently considering community input, and I oppose moving forward with the closings until Montanans have more time to voice their support for their local post office," he wrote in an Oct. 3 letter.
Baucus added that while Donahoe has said the USPS would only make closure decisions after substantive consideration of public input, "this has sadly not been the case" in the instance of the three Montana offices. He also noted that nearly all of the 85 offices in Montana that might be closed are more than 10 miles from another office.

Original List of possible Missouri closings:
167 Missouri post offices are on the United States Postal Service’s hit list as targets for possible closing. They’re part of a postal service plan to possibly shut down almost 3700 small post offices nationwide.
The postal service says the closings are not done deals; the list is only of “possible” closings.
The service is considering closing about ten percent of its offices nationwide, saying the increase use of e-mail and the recession-caused decline in advertising mail produced a 58-million dollar financial loss last year.
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VIDEO: MISSOURI THE BEAUTIFUL Take a patriotic tour of the Show Me State's natural wonders . . ========================================================== .

Important Note: FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted (©) material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available to advance understanding of ecological, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. It is believed that this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior general interest in receiving similar information for research and educational purposes. "Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use." . ________________________________________________________________________

Lisa Irwin: 10-Month Old Kansas City Baby Missing, No Leads, No Suspects


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Kansas City police hunt for clues on missing 10-month-old Lisa Irwin

By Camille Mann
cbsnews.com
October 5, 2011
 
__________________________________________________________________________ (CBS/KCTV/AP) KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Detectives looking for missing 10-month-old, Kansas City infant Lisa Irwin are struggling to find leads in the investigation Wednesday after an intense search a day earlier turned up few substantial clues, police said.  . . Lisa was last seen on Monday around 10:30 p.m. when her mother put her to bed in a crib, police said. Her father, who is an electrician, arrived home from an overnight shift about 4 a.m. . . He discovered Lisa missing and frantically called police, friends and family tell CBS affiliate KCTV. Authorities are speculating that the suspect entered through a bedroom window and snatched the baby from her bed as she was sleeping. Police said they issued the Amber Alert about 7:15 a.m. Tuesday in part because Lisa lived with both of her parents, who were at home and are accounted for. The alert was cancelled at 7 p.m. since the public awareness has been raised but police said they would continue to search for the baby. More than 100 law enforcement officials are looking for the girl. This includes local, state and federal officers including agents from the FBI. Officers on horseback are involved in the search along with police dogs. Firefighters with rappelling equipment are also assisting. The couple has two other young children who have also been interviewed. Police discounted the notion that Lisa could have crawled away. "The family is being cooperative with detectives," said Capt. Steve Young said reports the station."If there were any holes in their story, we would know by now. There are no holes in their stories. . . . There is a 10-month-old who isn't where she belongs and we are trying to find her. We will keep going bigger as long as we need to." Lisa has blue eyes and blonde hair. She is 30 inches tall and weighs between 26 and 30 pounds. She was last seen wearing purple shorts and a purple shirt with white kittens on it. The baby is described as having two bottom teeth, a small bug bite under her left ear, a beauty mark on her right outer thigh and currently has a cold with a cough. One neighbor told police that a stranger was seen walking with a baby wearing only a diaper about 1 a.m. in the street by the baby's home. Young said police are investigating this tip and ask for any and all tips from the public. Anyone with information is asked to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-8477. ___________________________________________ _____________________________________ . .
 
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VIDEO: MISSOURI THE BEAUTIFUL Take a patriotic tour of the Show Me State's natural wonders . . ========================================================== . 
 
Important Note: FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted (©) material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available to advance understanding of ecological, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. It is believed that this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior general interest in receiving similar information for research and educational purposes. "Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use." . ________________________________________________________________________

CHECKPOINT 99 MILES INSIDE U.S. BORDER, How to Stand Up to Police State 4th Amendment Violation VIDEO

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Exposing Internal Checkpoints: INFO WARS Nightly News Report 
infowars.com
October 5, 2011
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Alex Jones shows us how it's done when dealing with those unconstitutional checkpoints in His Home State of Texas.
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The map below shows how many Americans are currently living without full constitutional protection.

Are You Living in a Constitution Free Zone?

December 15, 2006
Using data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau, the ACLU has determined that nearly 2/3 of the entire US population (197.4 million people) live within 100 miles of the US land and coastal borders.
The government is assuming extraordinary powers to stop and search individuals within this zone. This is not just about the border: This " Constitution-Free Zone" includes most of the nation's largest metropolitan areas.
(Are You Living In A Constitution Free Zone? See the interactive map >>)
We urge you to call on Congress to hold hearings on and pass legislation to end these egregious violations of Americans' civil rights.

The problem:
  • Normally under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, the American people are not generally subject to random and arbitrary stops and searches. 
  • The border, however, has always been an exception.  There, the longstanding view is that the normal rules do not apply.  For example the authorities do not need a warrant or probable cause to conduct a “routine search.” 
  • But what is “the border”?  According to the government, it  is a 100-mile wide strip that wraps around the “external boundary” of the United States. 
  • As a result of this claimed authority, individuals who are far away from the border, American citizens traveling from one place in America to another, are being stopped and harassed in ways that our Constitution does not permit.
  • Border Patrol has been setting up checkpoints inland — on highways in states such as California, Texas and Arizona, and at ferry terminals in Washington State. Typically, the agents ask drivers and passengers about their citizenship.  Unfortunately, our courts so far have permitted these kinds of checkpoints – legally speaking, they are “administrative” stops that are permitted only for the specific purpose of protecting the nation’s borders.  They cannot become general drug-search or other law enforcement efforts. 
  • However, these stops by Border Patrol agents are not remaining confined to that border security purpose.  On the roads of California and elsewhere in the nation – places far removed from the actual border – agents are stopping, interrogating, and searching Americans on an everyday basis with absolutely no suspicion of wrongdoing.
  • The bottom line is that the extraordinary authorities that the government possesses at the border are spilling into regular American streets. 
Much of U.S. population affected
  • Many Americans and Washington policymakers believe that this is a problem confined to the San Diego-Tijuana border or the dusty sands of Arizona or Texas, but these powers stretch far inland across the United States. 
  • To calculate what proportion of the U.S. population is affected by these powers, the ACLU created a map and spreadsheet showing the population and population centers that lie within 100 miles of any “external boundary” of the United States. 
  • The population estimates were calculated by examining the most recent US census numbers for all counties within 100 miles of these borders.  Using numbers from the Population Distribution Branch of the US Census Bureau, we were able to estimate both the total number and a state-by-state population breakdown.  The custom map was created with help from a map expert at World Sites Atlas.
  • What we found is that fully TWO-THIRDS of the United States’ population lives within this Constitution-free or Constitution-lite Zone.   That’s 197.4 million people who live within 100 miles of the US land and coastal borders. 
  • Nine of the top 10 largest metropolitan areas as determined by the 2000 census, fall within the Constitution-free Zone.  (The only exception is #9, Dallas-Fort Worth.) Some states are considered to lie completely within the zone: Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont.
Part of a broader problem
  • The spread of border-search powers inland is part of a broad expansion of border powers with the potential to affect the lives of ordinary Americans who have never left their own country. 
  • It coincides with the development of numerous border technologies, including watch list and database systems such as the Automated Targeting System (ATS) traveler risk assessment program, identity and tracking systems such as electronic (RFID) passports, the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI), and intrusive technological schemes such as the Secure Border Initiative Network (SBINet) or “virtual border fence” and unmanned aerial vehicles (aka “drone aircraft”). 
  • This illegitimate expansion of the extraordinary powers of agents at the border is also part of a general trend we have seen over the past 8 years of an untrammeled, heedless expansion of police and national security powers without regard to the effect on innocent Americans.
  • This trend is also typical of the Bush Administration’s dragnet approach to law enforcement and national security.  Instead of intelligent, competent, targeted efforts to stop terrorism, illegal immigration, and other crimes, what we have been seeing in area after area is an approach that turns us all into suspects. This approach seeks to sift through the entire U.S. population in the hopes of encountering the rare individual whom the authorities have a legitimate interest in. 

If the current generation of Americans does not challenge this creeping (and sometimes galloping) expansion of federal powers over the individual through the rationale of “border protection,” we are not doing our part to keep alive the rights and freedoms that we inherited, and will soon find that we have lost some or all of their right to go about their business, and travel around inside their own country, without interference from the authorities.

The numbers below are taken from the 2007 U.S. Census.  States that are not listed, have zero population within the 100 mile zone.

StateEstimated 2007 Border PopulationEstimated 2007 State Population Percentage of Population in Constitution-Free Zone
Alabama1,104,9264,627,85123.88%
Alaska584,156683,47885.47%
Arizona5,570,4796,338,75587.88%
California36,453,64936,553,21599.73%
Connecticut3,502,3093,502,309100.00%
Delaware864,764864,764100.00%
District of Columbia588,292588,292100.00%
Florida18,251,24318,251,243100.00%
Georgia1,512,9509,544,75015.85%
Hawaii1,283,3881,283,388100.00%
Idaho199,2021,499,40213.29%
Illinois9,847,23512,852,54876.62%
Indiana2,607,5756,345,28941.09%
Louisiana3,388,3344,293,20478.92%
Maine1,317,2071,317,207100.00%
Maryland5,516,1235,618,34498.18%
Massachusetts6,449,7556,449,755100.00%
Michigan10,071,82210,071,822100.00%
Minnesota623,4775,197,62112.00%
Mississippi976,3452,918,78533.45%
Montana518,717957,86154.15%
New Hampshire1,315,8281,315,828100.00%
New Jersey8,685,9208,685,920100.00%
New Mexico452,9041,969,91522.99%
New York18,795,18719,297,72997.40%
North Carolina2,795,6619,061,03230.85%
North Dakota279,695639,71543.72%
Ohio7,885,36511,466,91768.77%
Oregon3,249,3273,747,45586.71%
Pennsylvania10,890,62312,432,79287.60%
Rhode Island1,057,8321,057,832100.00%
South Carolina2,603,9464,407,70959.08%
Texas10,301,40323,904,38043.09%
Vermont584,802621,25494.13%
Virginia6,282,9977,712,09181.47%
Washington6,076,2686,468,42493.94%
West Virginia233,3441,812,03512.88%
Wisconsin4,716,6215,601,64084.20%


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