SAN DIEGO -- Whenever I blast Republicans for racially insensitive remarks -- whether it's radio talk show host Bill Bennett talking boorishly about aborting black babies, or Sen. Trent Lott saying America would have been better off with "Dixiecrat" Strom Thurmond in the White House, or former California Gov. Pete Wilson referring to illegal immigrants as "Pedro" -- the blindly loyal folks on the red team demand that I do the same the next time a Democrat says something dumb about race or ethnicity. No problem. Not with politicians such as New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin and Sen.
When does a politician's travel junkets at private expense develop valuable knowledge or create the perception of a conflict of interest? That is a question now facing Minnesota voters. The Star Tribune reported Friday that Sen. Norm Coleman, R-Minn., is the second-most traveled member in the Senate in privately financed trips. Since his 2003 election, Coleman has accepted 46 privately funded trips. The most traveled member is Sen.
By now, it's become obvious that wind power has a huge economic future in this country and worldwide. Fossil fuel prices are soaring. The impacts of global warming are becoming clearer every day. Nuclear power is being slated for revival but cannot compete in either cost or environmental impact or vulnerability to terrorism. In fact, wind power is now the cheapest, cleanest, safest and most reliable form of new electrical generation.
Glenwood is without a doubt a unique and beautiful city, located on Lake Minnewaska, and a defining part of the history and geography of our part of Minnesota. The citizens of Glenwood should take stewardship of this great resource seriously. My family has had the pleasure of living near another unique, historic town, located on equally beautiful Lake Minnetonka for many years. The people of Excelsior, to this day, are thankful their founding fathers in the 1850s had the foresight to set aside the most precious, beautiful and most desirable shoreline for all of the people.
I am a senior citizen with a lifelong interest in politics and the antics of politicians. Consider the bag of tricks many politicians use to get elected and to stay in office in a lucrative job. I watched most of the lengthy questioning of Judge Samuel Alito on television to try to disqualify him from an office he is more than qualified for.
Roundabouts require one to drive in a circle, looking for traffic on the right and looking ahead for signs for your turnoff to the correct street. The milk separator concept to draw off the cream -- the downtown customers -- and to send the skimmed milk -- the through traveler -- further down Highway 12, may result in confused drivers spinning off in directions they don't desire, bringing unwanted traffic into the downtown. One can get used to a traffic circle if you use it regularly.
My frustration with Gov. Tim Pawlenty's 70 percent solution for school spending is twofold. First, the front page story in the West Central Tribune on Jan. 10, while factual in content, turned the tough job of keeping rural schools in the black into a competition between local districts. The Tribune, with its red ink "scores", rated area schools like teams in a basketball tournament. It would seem that a rural newspaper would do better to support rural schools. On the face of it, Pawlenty's proposed 70 percent solution for school spending sounds like a win-win situation, i.e.
WASHINGTON -- I underestimated the viciousness of the right wing. Last November, Rep. John Murtha, a Democrat and a decorated Marine combat veteran, came out for a rapid American withdrawal from Iraq. At the time, I wrote: "It will be difficult for Bush's acolytes to cast Murtha, who has regularly stood up for the military policies of Republican presidents during his 31 years in Congress, as some kind of extreme partisan or hippie protester." No, the conservative hit squad didn't accuse Murtha of being a hippie.
Not too long ago in our frontier days, snake oil salesmen roamed the land claiming cures for "everything that ails you." Now the Republican-led Congress, which claimed it would heal us from 40 years of "corrupt" Democratic Party rule, has gone into full "reform" mode, promising to cure the disease from which too many of them now suffer. "Step right up, my fellow Americans, here's what I'm gonna do.
I would like to praise Gov. Tim Pawlenty's desire to take on the immigration issue that seems to fail time and time again due to the government's bungling. Pawlenty now seems to be riding the fence and moving away from the direction he first took. The big problem with immigration is the companies who hire illegal immigrants. Companies don't do enough to check on those applying for work. In my opinion, they even go so far as to recruit workers whether they believe they are illegal or not. Many companies don't do enough background checks and do not have the ability to spot bad IDs.