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"I am not a cry baby"
COLUMBIA, Mo 03/04/15 (Beet Bite) -- You've undoubtedly seen them: so-called "Internet memes" some city leaders say are crossing the line.
Columbia city manager Mike Matthes smoking a blunt the size of a sewer pipe marked TIF.
Deputy city manager, failed dinner train promoter, and red light camera advocate Tony St. Romaine wearing a dunce cap.
Mayor Bob McDavid , crying in a diaper.
(Click pix for larger images.)
"These memes -- or whatever you call them -- have become so outrageous, so distasteful -- Staff thinks the time is right to propose an ordinance banning them ," reads an email to Mayor McDavid, leaked last week to the Columbia Heart Beat.
"We see broad-based support for such a ban, from the development community, red light camera manufacturers, parking garage builders, stu...
Change, we must
By Ken Midkiff
COLUMBIA, Mo 03/03/15 (Op Ed) -- Change is hard. People get accustomed to doing something a certain way. They often resist even beneficial change.
Columbia is a dynamic town, always changing. But two matters presently before our citizens stand out more than usual under the "change" banner. Coincidentally, both involve eliminating plastic bags.
Our first change would swap large plastic trash bags for roll carts on wheels. The debate includes questions like, Is this plan sustainable? Good for the environment? Green?
To empty the roll carts, City Hall wants to purchase natural gas-powered trucks, arguing natural gas is "green". But there is no proof natural gas produces less greenhouse gases than gasoline or diesel. In fact, there is much evidence natural gas o...
When there's no political oxygen left
COLUMBIA, Mo 03/1/15 (Op Ed) -- The nuclear bomb dropped back in my lap yesterday, this time from an anonymous tipster calling himself (or herself) "Barney Miller " in an email with the 10-megaton titillation, "So-and-so has ties to controversial 'Pray Away the Gay' groups."
What's a "Pray Away the Gay" group? And how can email deliver nukes?
In political reporting, some stories are so explosive that once in print, online, or on the air, they blast a crater into a campaign, sucking out the air on every other issue and leaving a cloud of commotion behind.
After a nuke drops on a campaign, no one wants to talk about anything but the cause of the blast.
Not infrastructure nor crime. Not the nanny state or the ninny state. Not taxes and rate hikes nor fine ...
Columbia gets the bill for small-town, big-ticket corruption
COLUMBIA, Mo 02/26/15 (Beat Byte) -- One of the biggest Columbia taxpayer ripoffs in recent memory is about to run its end game, when Columbia City Council members vote March 2 to annex 128 acres of land near Battle High School and St. Charles Road, into city limits.
The annexation's largest beneficiary -- the St. Charles Road Development Group -- will then use taxpayer-funded sewer, water, electric, streets, lights, sidewalks and other infrastructure to support Somerset Village , 271 single-family homes and 32 acres of apartments and offices.
Otherwise known as the St. Charles Road Gang -- MBS Books president Bob Pugh ; Atkins Corporation chiefs Tom and Scott Atkins ; builder Rob Wolverton ; and the estate of Little Dixie Construction founder...
"I believe it's what he would have wanted."
A crippled city's unlikely savior
By Carole Riesenb...
"This isn't your grandma's journalism"
"I grant that there's a lack of confidence in the ...
Theatre as therapy
COLUMBIA, Mo 02/22/15 (Review) --...
An artist's life -- and passing
COLUMBIA, Mo 2/22/1...
When the greatest joys are unexpected
Patience, perseverance -- and new-found courage