The Mornin' Mail is published every weekday except major holidays
Tuesday, December 29, 2009 Volume XVIII, Number 133

did ya know?

Did Ya Know?... An H1N1 clinic will be held at the Jasper County Health Department on Thursday, January 7 from 9-11:30 AM and 1-4 PM by appointment only. This clinic is for all individuals 6 months of age and older. There is no cost for the vaccination. Both types of H1N1 vaccine will be available. For appoint call 358-3111 or 877-879-9131.

today's laugh

Murphy applied for an engineering position at an Irish firm based in Dublin. An American applied for the same job and both applicants having the same qualifications were asked to take a test by the Department manager. Upon completion of the test both men only missed one of the questions. The manager went to Murphy and said.

Manager: "Thank you for your interest, but we’ve decided to give the American the job"

Murphy: "And why would you be doing that? We both got nine questions correct. This being Ireland and me being Irish I should get the job!"

Manager: "We have made our decisions not on the correct answers, but on the question you missed."

Murphy: "And just how would one incorrect answer be better than the other?"

Manager: "Simple, the American put down on question #5, "I don’t know.", You put down "Neither do I."

A Chronological Record of Events as they have Transpired in the City and County since our last Issue.

Jackson Purchases the Bethel Baptist Church.

When the time rolled around at which the decision to give "General" Andrew Jackson the deed of trust to the Bethel Baptist church, the building was sold to satisfy the General’s claim. He, himself, became the purchaser of the church which is still subject to a first mortgage to the B&L Association.

The suit just closed was brought by the forty-eight members of the church who claim that the General and John A. Scott inveigled the trustees of the church into giving the mortgage, the full meaning of which, they say they did not really understand. They further state that the church did not owe General Jackson one cent and they asked that deed of trust be set aside.

The court gave the members of the church until this morning to raise money to recompense General Jackson for the amount he had invested. They failed to do so and Jackson was given the deed of trust.

  Today's Feature

An O. Henry Christmas.

Stone’s Throw Theatre, Carthage, Missouri will present An O. Henry Christmas by Howard Burmam, directed by Mr. James Privett and produced by the Lamar Community Theater and by special arrangement with Baker’s Plays . Additional funding to Stone’s Throw Community Theatre is provided by the Missouri Arts Council, a state agency. This production hopes to continue a little of the Christmas spirit into January.

The performance will be at Stone’s Throw Dinner Theatre, 796 South Stone Lane, Carthage, Missouri on January 8, 2010. This production will be served in a dessert-only format. The doors will open at 6:30 and the show starts at 7:00. The price is $15.00. Children under 5 are free (without dessert or $5.00 with dessert). Reservations can be made by calling Betty Bell at 417-358-7268 or the theatre at 417-358-9665 or on line at or at

An O. Henry Christmas is directed by Jim Privett with assistance from Megan Hamman. It features actors from Lamar, Golden City and Lockwood.

The Play sees six friends, poor, down-on-their-luck hobos, huddled around a fire in a rail yard on Christmas Eve, 1893. A stranger stumbles upon the group and offers to tell stories in exchange for some company and a bit of broth on the cold winter’s night. As the verbose stranger weaves his tales, with the assistance of the hobos, each member of the ragtag group reveals more about himself or herself, and more importantly discovers more about the true meaning of Christmas.

Through the play, the audience will get to know the hobos. Dinty is a cynical artist. Agnes is a caring farm girl from the Midwest who has not lost her rosy view on life despite her circumstances. Hal is a young man of a well-to-do family who has lost everything to a bottle. Fran is a witty pickpocket. Marguerite is a very sick young former lady of the night. Guido, a police officer, has his eye out for a guy. Finally, of course, there is O.P., the story teller, with a vocabulary full of large words and a secret to hide. O.P. is played by Rowland Geddie, who has appeared in several shows at Stone’s Throw, most recently in Twelve Angry Men.

The stories O.P. tells are some of O. Henry’s classic short stories. Through O.P. and his hobo cast, the audience learns Christmas lessons of hope, love, sacrifice and unselfish giving taught by Bobby Gillian, Stuffy Pete and the Old Gentleman, and Jim and Della. These stories all piece together the overriding theme, but it is not until the last leaf falls that real sacrifice and a true Christmas miracle are revealed.


The Clock Ticks Slowest at Gitmo: Why It’s Taking so Long to Close the Prison

by Dafna Linzer, ProPublica

As we have reported throughout the year, the Obama administration has been serially hampered in its efforts to shutter the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. It underestimated the time needed to close the facility and was unprepared for Congressional opposition.

Finding countries to adopt detainees has proven difficult, and only this month did the administration locate a prison to move detainees into once Guantanamo closes.

Meanwhile, a front-page piece in yesterday’s New York Times suggested that Guantanamo won’t be closed "until 2011 at the earliest." As the Times notes, the administration has had trouble getting the necessary Congressional funding to purchase and upgrade a prison in Illinois where as many as 100 detainees may be moved.

This is not where the Obama administration imagined it would be 11 months ago, when the president signed an executive order to close the prison at Guantanamo Bay by January 2010.

That day, the president set in motion an interagency task force to determine which detainees could be released and whether any could be prosecuted. Obama suspended the Bush-era military commissions on Guantanamo Bay and administration officials emphasized a preference for prosecutions in federal court.

But in nearly a year, only one detainee has been charged in federal court and the military commissions have been revived.

In November — 10 months after Obama signed the executive order — Attorney-General Eric Holder announced that another five detainees would face federal charges in the Southern District of New York for their alleged roles in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Only now is a federal grand jury considering charges for the five. And with no trial yet under way, it could be years before the Justice Department secures the conviction of a single detainee.

Even after Guantanamo is closed, some detainees will be held indefinitely, without charge or trial, as they were under former President Bush. Like the Bush administration, Obama administration officials have cited the same legal authority — the 2001 Congressional Authorization for Use of Military Force — as the legal basis for prolonged detention.

A look at where we are now:

* Since Obama’s inauguration, the Guantanamo prison population has fallen from 241 to 198. One of those prisoners died in custody and one was transferred to New York to face charges for his alleged role in the 1998 U.S. embassy bombings in East Africa.

* Justice Department officials have said as many as 90 detainees have been cleared for release in the past year. Of those, 20 have already been turned over to third countries for release or trial and 21 others have been sent back to their home countries. The administration has not revealed any details regarding the legal agreements that governed transfers to third countries or said under what conditions other detainees were released.

* Ten detainees who are under court order to be released from Guantanamo remain at the prison. Seven of those ordered freed are Chinese Muslims who are part of the Uighurs community. The administration had hoped to resettle the Uighurs quickly, but it has proven difficult to find countries who will accept them and where in turn the Uighurs are willing to go.

* In May, the Senate blocked the administration from moving any detainees into the United States for release or continued incarceration. Until the law is changed, the only detainees who can be moved are those who will be put on trial.

* Last month, two top administration officials who were working to close Guantanamo announced they were leaving the administration. Greg Craig was forced out of his job as White House Counsel in November and is returning to his Washington law firm. Phillip Carter, who was a principal assistant secretary of defense for detainee issues, resigned last month, citing personal issues. Before joining the Obama administration, Carter had been a vocal opponent of the previous administration’s detainee policies.

* Thirty-two detainees have won their habeas corpus cases and were ordered released by courts. Nine have lost their suits. The government has so far decided to appeal two cases.

Just Jake Talkin'

This always seems ta be the "quite time" of the year. Ever’one’s gettin’ over the Christmas pace and waitin’ for the new year to begin. This year the snow is givin’ an even greater excuse to take some calm time.

I ran into some small town newspaper types over the weekend durin’ my travels over the hills. Most of us are rather isolated from other communities and their daily and weekly rhythms. Seems there are a lot of similarities along with natural area idiosyncrasies. It’s good ta see that other small newspapers are survivin’ and even thrivin’ in view of the national economic downturn. As some of the larger newspaper chains downsize and cut staff, the mom and pop operations may be one of the bright points in the struggle to get the news out.

This is some fact, but mostly,

Just Jake Talkin’.

Sponsored by Carthage Printing Weekly Columns

To Your Good Health

By Paul G. Donohue, M.D.

Is Breast Lump Cancer?

DEAR DR. DONOHUE: I am 20 and need your help. I felt a lump in my right breast. I told a friend about this, and she said breast cancer never happens to anyone my age. If that’s the case, I am relieved. If it’s not the case, what should I do? How can you tell a cancer lump from one that isn’t cancer? This is on my mind all the time. -- L.G.

ANSWER: Breast cancer does happen to young women. It’s often said that it does not, but that’s misinformation. It’s true that breast cancer is more prevalent at older ages and that the risk for it increases the longer a woman lives. So someone your age is less likely to have it, but youth doesn’t make you immune to it.

Size, how the lump feels and whether it is tightly fixed in place are some of the qualities that sway a doctor into judging a lump as being cancerous. Cancer lumps are hard. They’re firmly anchored to the tissue beneath them; you can’t move the lump. Cancer lumps have irregular borders. Frequently, the overlying skin of a cancer lump is drawn down toward it to form a little dimple.

This sounds like it’s easy to tell if a lump is or isn’t cancer. It’s not. If a doctor, after examining the breast, cannot be sure, then he or she usually has the patient come back in a month or two to see if the lump has changed in size. If doubt still exists, an ultrasound in a woman less than 35 and a mammogram in an older woman usually can settle the matter.

Should either of these tests not provide a definite answer, the next step is to obtain material for microscopic examination. That might be done with a very thin needle, with a larger bore needle or with a scalpel. Self-examination is good for discovering a lump. Self-diagnosis is foolish for proclaiming the lump benign or cancerous. You have to let the doctor do that; see yours today.

Incidentally, it is better to have a breast exam one week after a period. At the time of a menstrual period, many breast lumps enlarge and become tender, and this can make a difficult diagnosis more difficult.

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