We can't compete with Jason Lewis when it comes to pushing hot buttons and provoking ideological flamers, left and right. Our Feb. 21 front-page Sunday Star Tribune Op-Ex commentary, making a reasoned, pro-business case for raising taxes, to address our historic budget crisis and to continue investing in human capital and infrastructure, elicited 36 comments. Mayb... Read More
The Minnesota news media appear to be trying hard in the midst of a long holiday weekend to tell a complicated story. But they still have not quite captured the enormity of the blockbuster court ruling that Gov. Tim Pawlenty overstepped his authority when he unilaterally slashed our state government's budgets six months ago. At issue was Pawlenty's unprecedented use of "unallotment'' power to ... Read More
The Star Tribune's front-page story today finds that "less government'' is the overwhelming consensus "vision'' for Republican gubernatorial candidates. Peggy Lee and most Minnesotans want to know: Is that all there is? Leaving aside that this mantra sounds more like hard-right, activist-energizing radio talk than inclusive vision casting Read More
Our continuing and increasingly dubious experiment with starving the public sector in Minnesota is producing almost daily reports of questionable budget cuts. A Star Tribune front-page story on disappearing lifeguards at public beaches is the latest manifestation of our increasingly penurious fiscal policy. Anti-government conservatives like to claim that much or most of government investment is unnecesssa... Read More
Some recent stories illustrate some of the consequences of the pay for services model of government. In Tonka Bay, the city has decided to charge fees to defray the costs of opening City Hall for public meetings that are not city-run. The council declined to waive the fee for a Republican Party caucus, and then decided it was consistent to also charge the League of Women Voters to stage its non-partisan candidate forum. The League objected. In Me... Read More
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