In an extraordinary conversation at the U of M last week (somehow completely missed by the Minnesota news media) renowned economist Hernando de Soto delivered a fascinating and disturbing theory about the root cause of the continuing global economic crisis.When the crisis exploded in the closing months of the Bush administration, de Soto said, he was stunned to hear the very top American financial regulators admit that they simply did not and cou... Read More
"Region: Planning the Future of the Twin Cities,'' is an impressive new policy textbook, hot off the University of Minnesota Press, that surveys the state of the metropolitan area and offers prescriptions for smarter growth and reducing racial and economic segregation. The book, co-authored by metropolitan governance experts Myron Orfield and Thomas F. Luce, Jr., belongs on the desks of Minnesota policy enth... Read More
The demise of Home Valu (it will always be affectionately thought of as Plywood Minnsota to us old-timers) reminds me that its owner, former U.S. Sen. Rudy Boschwitz, has been a stand-up guy in many respects: a good family man, a community-minded business leader, serious about his Jewish faith and traditions, and at times a voice for moderation and common sense as a Republican Party leader. The announceme... Read More
Watch for lots of retrospective media commentary in the next couple of weeks, as we mark the end of one of the worst years in the economic history of Minnesota and the United States, but also one of the worst decades in modern times. The pundits will offer us a zillion theoretical causes for these hard times, from the 9/11 trauma at the start of this blighted decade, to dislocations from a more global e... Read More
Minnesota Management and Budget Commissioner Tom Hanson got some laughs at the capitol press conference today with a Freudian slip, saying "the recovery is over,'' which he corrected to "the recession is over.'' Hanson and State Economist Tom Stinson went on in rather somber tones to explain that the recovery will be one of the "slowest on record'' and the November 2009 forecast is depressingly familiar: another sig... Read More
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