To be honest, more people read this thing than we thought. Several conversations in the past seven days about the assertion in this space that the county needs to go wet. Several conversations; in fact this may be the most “Hey that thing you wrote….” this section has generated.

Regardless, we’re glad you’re reading it. (It’d feel weird to put on a part and nobody shows up, after all.) But it brings two points to mind:

1- We can be in favor of it. We can even encourage it, whatever the “it” is to be, to take place. But we can’t do it ourselves. The heavy lifting of political progress, including getting ballots on the measure, simply isn’t what we do here. If you think wet is a good idea - and apparently some of you do - then by cracky get out there and do something about it!

We’ll support you, most likely. (Or call you out if we can’t, also most likely.)

2- The best part, the most interesting part, was the way the conversations took place. The conversations almost unfailingly were polite, with pauses to consider the other person’s viewpoint and counterpoint, in much the way civilized people go about reaching a conclusion.

Which is to say it was nothing like an Internet post (like and share if you agree). It was adults interacting, showing and receiving respect.

In the early days of the Internet there was a lot of hope that the global platform would lead to global conversation, just like the conversation between two or three people about a county political issue, but on a grander scale. Little doubt the place we’re at now, of foam-flecked screeds as to how X will lead to the downfall of all things true and beautiful, is some distance from that hoped for future.

But that’s for the time being. Respectful conversations among respectful people prove that, with context, such things are possible.

Context then, that’s the thing.


We had a great time playing music on the square last Saturday, and hope you were one of the ones who either came by to play or listen.

We admit, in fairness, our traffic control skills aren’t what they need to be, and we’re sorry about squeezing the traffic lane as we did. But thank you, Clinton and Van Buren County, for supporting the effort and slowing down as you went past (and in some cases waving). We’ll get it worked out and narrow the lane down.

Don’t worry about a thing. (There’s a song about that.) And thank you. (Ditto.)

Winds, rain

Granted, this is a county paper, and it’s a county in the Ozark foothills, but still, as we’re getting ready for press and the skies are gray and the wind’s up, the least we can do is acknowledge the impact the last few days have had on those on the coast.

We are proud, darn proud, of those from the county able to go out and pitch in, and we’re just as proud of those in the county putting together efforts to provide for those slapped sideways by all this foul weather.

And still, the old-timers remind us that this year’s wet summer portends a rough winter. Buckle up kids.

Philippians 4: 4-9 (NIV)

Final Exhortations

4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.