Dear Danny Strahan - Pharaoh of Eastern Taney County,
It was good to see you at Hollister's historic unveiling of its entry into the tourism industry. I was of course disappointed by your lack of attendance at Branson's Convention Center Grand Opening celebration.
You expressed your disappointment with my exposure of corruption, incestuous political pandering and deception involved with Proposition A. You point out that good men were criticized. Indeed, this is true. Good men were criticized for promoting bad ideas. We in fact acknowledge their virtue and criticize their destructive plans which can only breed failure.
I am ashamed of the press and their evident corrupt dealings. If they weren't so susceptible to bribery I wouldn't have had to write a word. I'm angry that I've had to do it, but citizens have a right to know what their elected leadership is doing. If local news correspondents had a lick of integrity, my time addressing the topic could have been invested elsewhere.
Let's get back to the primary issue. You and two other men lead Taney County. My simplistic view of government is this - two departments exist - 1. Department of Fun and Games and 2. Department of Saving Lives.
Your proposed Proposition A tax does nothing for the Department of Saving Lives and dumps $90 million into the Department of Fun and Games. In my opinion, the White River Historical Society has evolved into a ridiculous organization. They've proved themselves poor keepers of history, poor stewards of fact and their actions are at times offensive.
While high numbers of Taney County residents live in poverty - you spend $50,000 to preserve a jail, Why? I watched the White River Valley Historical Society perform a terrorist reenactment in our town square. They spoke the oath to death by the Klu Klux Klan predecessors "The Baldknobbers". In my town square! Is this a wise use of tax payer dollars?
I'll be the first to say I don't think it is. The county you govern - your kingdom - is ranked by COMET (Combined Ozarks Multi-Jurisdictional Task force)as the most Meth-laden county in Southwest Missouri.
People are dying, but you build more prisons. Your people are dying. Our people are dying. I don't find your significant investment (wasn't gonna cost a dime right) to imprison more Taney County Citizens impressive. How many more will die while you invest in fun and games? When it comes to meth, law enforcement is a one-legged stool. Why is this ignored while plans to build a temple to a few peoples dead relatives becomes a priority?
It's great that you've found a way to levy a tax on the good citizens of Taney County while assuring the cities can't reduce their debt obligations. But if this tax was born out of good instead of hatred you'd have more support for it. As it stands, deception by the corrupt reporters who lobbied for an increase for their "Temple to the Dead" and false report published in the papers with the intent to deceive and con citizens into financing their ridiculous venture has been noted.
It's my understanding that Ron Houseman was paid to lobby for the tax increase. Do you guys really call yourselves Republicans? Where in the Republican platform does it encourage making up new ways of taxing people and figuring out how to spend it after seeing how big the pot is? Since the tax doesn't necessarily help anyone I don't think there is a solid liberal Democrat leg to stand on either. Not even a socialist would steal from the people to give to the most wealthy citizens.
I can't verify the findings (how much Houseman is paid) because the group lobbying for the funds never filed Missouri Ethics Commission reports.
I was threatened by a local cocaine cartel many years ago. Watching what these individuals were doing encouraged me to document and record the happenings of our region. I often wonder how the drug trade became so powerful and how these filthy men are allowed to poison our children to this day. I wonder how these cartels exist unfettered, while we seem to have 90 million dollars to spend on a 100 Acre Temple to the Dead.
You're an elected leader and as such I've tried to facilitate your voice. When no newspaper in Taney County would print James (your brother and county assessor's letters from employees, I did. When the newspapers charged him to facilitate a message to the people I stayed up at night and re-wrote the entire letter so the people could see it.
I have a daughter here sir and a responsibility dictated by the most high to ensure the best world possible for her. I want her to be free.
When I see a spade on the political table - I call it. If you got a problem with that - I'll publish it. If you have a correction - I'll pay to facilitate the message.
Being Taney County is the Southwest Missouri seat for Meth production I can only assume it's because of one or more of the following 1. powerful people want it that way 2. Law enforcement is unable to handle the crisis either underfunded or undertrained 3. Corruption and nepotism is common in Taney County. 4. People/Leaders don't care 5. Incompetency.
Please, tell me different, I want my faith in our leadership restored.
Though I disagree with the priorities of the commission, I don't hate the individuals. I don't hate the players, I hate the game - a game where people die while temples to the dead are constructed on the backs of the dying.
This isn't how I want my children to live. Your actions affect her life. I ask you Pharaoh - set my people free.