When Marigold Resources' branding and agribusiness adviser Larry McDonald came up with the idea to re-purpose the portion of the I-74 Bridge that used to house the toll plaza operations into an elevated park on the Mississippi River, his concept rendering (pictured above) was posted to several social-media and LinkedIn accounts. 

Landmark Fluoridation Trial on Hold

Search the for the word “fluoride” or “fluoridation” at every broadcast-news-station Web site and the two (for now) daily-newspaper Web sites in the Quad Cities and you will not find one mention of a recent landmark trial over the controversial practice of medicating local water supplies with fluoride under the auspices of topically treating one's teeth through ingestion. It's another example of big pharma's power and influence over the media to not question the status quo.

I am well aware of the stigma associated with questioning the status quo when it comes to matters of health and well being. You may have noticed the Reader has not had any local health-care advertisers for many years. Nor have we ever had any pharmaceutical advertisers, something all mainstream media rely heavily on to stay afloat.

Longtime readers of this publication are well aware that one of the Reader's primary directives is to question authority. There are troves of documentation worldwide that prove our leaders got COVID-19 deadly wrong in numerous areas. If you have not read Reader editor Kathleen McCarthy's extensive analysis of the COVID-19 science and punditry over the last three months, you can get caught up at the following short links: RCReader.com/y/covid19 and RCReader.com/y/covidmay.

On October 18, 2019, the planners of the 2020 worldwide panic called a Covid-19 pandemic emergency fully mapped out and role-played how all of this fear and economic chaos would arise and what steps global leaders will take. Visit Plannedemic.org to see the World Economic Forum and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation funded Coronavirus pandemic simulation's own Web site of materials and video recordings. Participants include non-government organizations (NGOs) such as the World Health Organization, the United Nations, global corporations and media, Johns Hopkins University, the World Bank, and both U.S. and China Centers for Disease Control agencies.

Each of the current visiting painting and sculpture exhibits at the Figge Art Museum is worth seeing on its own. Combined, the fare at the Figge is packed with visual value and should not be missed.

Talk about an arts destination. I finally visited the Beréskin Gallery & Art Academy for the opening of Bettendorf native (in from Kanas City) Troy Swangstu's animal paintings. His meaty semi-abstract paintings are up through March 9 and are well worth checking out, especially if you are into Basquiat and Bacon, and wish you had gotten to visit the Caves of Lascaux, too.

Let's put a new twist on an old format – the ubiquitous year-end lists about music. We invited over 50 Quad Citizens who we know contribute to, support, and/or promote the local-music scene to give us their takes on 2017 via a 3-2-1 format. We asked: What are the three top songs they loved listening to this year; the two top live shows they saw in the Quad Cities; and the number-one artist they most want to see perform here live in 2018?

Step away from the game console. Step away from the screen. Extract yourself from the Faceborg. Visit dozens of places around the world, eras, concepts, ideas, history and art – all inside the Figge Art Museum.

The River Cities' Reader begins its 25th year of publishing this Fall. With the domination of big social media, independent publishers like the Reader must establish a direct transactional relationship with its readership, or perish.

Over the decades, our readers and advertisers have repeatedly told us how important the locally-owned Reader, and its coverage, are to the Quad Cities' vitality and culture.

It's often what has kept us going.

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