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Odds and ends...

March 7, 2012 - Blaine Hyska
— It looks like Wisconsin will not get a new iron mine, or the more than 700 mining jobs, plus 2,000 ancillary jobs, in the economically depressed north woods.

The Badger State has a rich mining heritage, but that has changed. Today, Wisconsin is well known for its anti-mining attitude. As a result, Gogebic Taconite has pulled the plug on plans to build an iron mine near Mineral Lake, Wis.

It brings to mind the zinc, copper, lead, gold and silver deposit Exxon discovered near Crandon in 1976. Attempts to secure permits were unsuccessful in the 1980s, 1990s and early 2000s. Exxon has since ceased exploration.

No one wants an iron mine in their back yard, yet everyone wants a car or truck.

No one wants to deal with an underground zinc, copper, lead, gold or silver mine, yet we sure do love our hand-held gadgets.

Madison and Milwaukee day trippers enjoy the wilderness, yet those “backwoods locals with their tar-paper shacks and rusty pickups” sure do ruin the splendor. I can hear Amanda Madison now, “What’s wrong with those bumpkins? Why can’t they find a job?”

— The Dickinson County Library closed during last week’s snowstorm. That’s the second time this winter the library took a Snow Day. Initially, local streets were miserable. Later in the day, though, folks were driving here and there.

Seems to me a school snow day would have been a good opportunity to get the kids out of the house for some family fun...say with a trip to the library. There are plenty of people who live within walking distance of the Iron Mountain facility.

Local retail businesses, meanwhile, struggled to stay open to pay their taxes, which help fund library operations.

Do you suppose they have a dictionary with “public servant” in it?

By the way, libraries stayed open in Escanaba, Marquette and Menominee (where a snow emergency was declared).



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