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Good, Bad & The Ugly

March 15, 2012
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The good

Four downtown business leaders were awarded last month by the Des Moines Downtown Chamber at its Annual Member Celebration and Awards Ceremony. Award winners include Executive Director of The Des Moines Social Club Zachary Mannheimer (2011 Citizen of the Year), Jessica Van Sloten from Iowa Events Center/Global Spectrum (2011 Ambassador of the Year), Dos Rios Cantina and Tequila Lounge/Big City Burgers and Greens/Catering DSM (2011 Business of the Year), and Christina Moffatt, owner of Crème Cupcake + Dessert (Service Award). Congratulations to a few of Des Moines coolest movers and shakers!

For the first time since the 1990s, the manufacturing sector is adding jobs. According to Alan B. Krueger, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers: Private sector payrolls have increased by 233,000 jobs; overall payroll employment has risen by 227,000 jobs in February; and the unemployment rate has fallen by a 0.8 percent over the last six months. Despite adverse shocks that have created headwinds for economic growth, Krueger says the economy has added private sector jobs for 24 straight months, for a total of more than 3.9 million payroll jobs. In the last 12 months, 2.2 million private sector jobs were added. In the last six months, 1.3 million private sector jobs were added — the most of any six-month period in nearly six years. It’s about time.

The bad

We should just call these two Tweedledee and Tweedledum. Kansas residents Jesus Suarez and Jesus Santos, both 25, were arrested last week after they accidentally called police during a drug deal. One of the suspects called 911 while the two were arguing over a drug deal. The suspect thought he hung up, but the dispatcher was able to hear and record the entire conversation. As police approached the scene, one of the suspects said, “Oh, there goes the cops,” allowing officers to locate the two. Both were arrested and charged with possessing cocaine with intent to sell, conspiracy to possess cocaine with the intent to sell, not having a drug tax stamp and possessing drug paraphernalia.

Hey, kids! Instead of boring vegetables, how about ammonium hydroxide-treated ground connective tissue and meat scraps? This story gives more legitimacy to the bad stereotypes about school lunches. McDonald’s, Taco Bell and the United Kingdom have already banned it, but now the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is buying 7 million pounds of beef containing the “lean beef trimmings” (coined “pink slime” by microbiologist Gerald Zirnstein, formerly of the USDA Food Safety Inspection Service). Zirnstein first saw pink slime being mixed into burger meat when he was touring a Beef Products Inc. (BPI) facility in 2002 after an outbreak of salmonella. “Scientists in D.C. were pressured to approve this stuff with minimal safety approval,” Zirnstein said, and now the USDA is ignoring all common sense and science and serving it to school kids. By the way, it’s also a common ingredient in dog and chicken food. Eat up, kiddies!

The ugly

What a creep. New York resident David Cook, 33, was arrested last week after he abused a 7-week-old girl. According to police, Cook sexually abused his girlfriend’s baby while she was left in his care for several days. Cook tried to talk the mother out of taking her daughter to the doctor when she got back home, but she took her daughter in anyway. The girl had a broken leg, injuries to her vagina and a possible head injury. Cook was arrested and charged with two counts of second-degree aggravated sexual abuse and one count of assault.

This couple loves taco sauce and apparently never learned to share. Florida residents Christopher Phillips, 23, and Lisa Tyre, 27, were arrested last week after they beat Phillips’ mother for using their taco sauce. According to police, Phillips began screaming at his mother after discovering she had used the couple’s salsa and taco sauce without asking. Phillips then put his mother in a headlock, breaking her eyeglasses. Tyre also yelled at Phillips’ mother, and slapped her in the face four times. The woman finally got out of the house and was able to call 911. Both Phillips and Tyre were arrested and charged with domestic battery.CV



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