OPINION

Thank You, Carol Brumwell

Carol_Brumwell_(2).jpgCarol Brumwell served as Editor of this newsletter for seven years. Always the servant, Carol never sought to dictate.  Hers was the steady hand behind the scenes. 

Carol was insistent on clarity.  She set the style, always with a careful eye on grammar, spelling, and sentences that went on too long.  If the writing didn’t make sense to her, it somehow never appeared in the newsletter

She also had a soft way of reminding the rest of us on the Communications Committee that a writing deadline was coming up.  Carol would urge us to get the articles in to her on time, which we often pushed past.  Every time, she would work late into the night to get the newsletters out.  Then she would pull the headlines and schedule the release of content for our social media director. 

The solid reputation and growing readership is a testament to Carol Brumwell’s dedication and skills.  Her last newsletter as editor was earlier this month.  Yet the rest of the Communications Team will likely still hear her voice urging us on.

Again, thank you Carol, for everything.

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  • Thank You, Carol Brumwell

    Carol_Brumwell_(2).jpgCarol Brumwell served as Editor of this newsletter for seven years. Always the servant, Carol never sought to dictate.  Hers was the steady hand behind the scenes. 

    Carol was insistent on clarity.  She set the style, always with a careful eye on grammar, spelling, and sentences that went on too long.  If the writing didn’t make sense to her, it somehow never appeared in the newsletter

    She also had a soft way of reminding the rest of us on the Communications Committee that a writing deadline was coming up.  Carol would urge us to get the articles in to her on time, which we often pushed past.  Every time, she would work late into the night to get the newsletters out.  Then she would pull the headlines and schedule the release of content for our social media director. 

    The solid reputation and growing readership is a testament to Carol Brumwell’s dedication and skills.  Her last newsletter as editor was earlier this month.  Yet the rest of the Communications Team will likely still hear her voice urging us on.

    Again, thank you Carol, for everything.

  • Thoughts on the November Election in MN

    Opinion_Sign_blue_background.jpgOn November 8, voters in populous Hennepin and Ramsey counties heroically saved all of Minnesota from “losing its democracy” by voting in such large numbers for the failing status quo that the voters in the rest of Minnesota had no choice but to submit.   
     
    Metro voters selflessly voted to sacrifice their own basic personal interests in record numbers never before witnessed in a Minnesota election.   
     
    Thanks to metro voter’s blind devotion to political party, Governor Walz’s “One Minnesota” remains intact so that all Minnesotans can continue to benefit from a progressive state government’s “Minnesota nice” features such as: 

    1. A string of nation-leading state social service frauds costing taxpayers over $350 million so far.
    2. Massive mass transit construction cost overruns of $1.4 billion plus and anticipated light rail completion delays of seven plus years.  All of this waste simply to keep construction union DFL supporters flush with cash.  
    3. Complete failure to protect Metro citizens and their homes and businesses from rioters – disproportionately harming inner city immigrant and minority communities.
    4. Trashing of the Twin City’s hard-earned, sterling reputation as a great place to visit, host a conference, start a business or even move to 
    5. A failed “defund the police” or “re-imagine the police” agenda that has demoralized law enforcement professionals, destroyed Minneapolis police department’s ability to retain and recruit staff and left citizens vulnerable to an ongoing crime wave.
    6. Metropolitan Council’s failure to operate a safe-from-crime and cost-efficient light rail system.  Citizens have abandoned public transit out of fear for their personal safety.
    7. Totally inadequate inner city law enforcement to deal with out-of-control crime.  Citizens had to go to court to force Minneapolis to staff its police department in accordance with legal requirements.  Trouble is no cops want to work for a city whose DFL leaders are anti-law enforcement.
    8. Nation- leading educational achievement gap between Minneapolis’s white and black public-school students – quite an accomplishment for “progressive” Minnesota and its all-powerful, ostensibly student-focused Education Minnesota teachers union. 
    9.  Ongoing indoctrination of school students in destructive race ideologies like critical race theory which classifies all students by race and then doubles down by blaming unsuspecting white kids for being the oppressors of kids of color, leaving the latter unable to achieve and be successful – courtesy of the teachers unions.
    10. Legalizing more drugs like marijuana – a top priority of the DFL.  Progressives railed against tobacco smoking for all of the legitimate health problems it causes but somehow inhaling marijuana smoke is deemed to be perfectly ok.  Dumb and dumber.  Another potential source of tax revenue and a potential new voting bloc apparently overcome any health concerns.

    Once again, thanks to Hennepin- and Ramsey county voters for voting overwhelmingly to “save our democracy” and allow all of the attractive features of Governor Walz’s “One Minnesota” fiasco to continue unabated for another four years.

     

  • Opinions on Why the Red Wave Failed to Materialize

    Vote_ballot_box_cube.jpgThoughts and opinions on what may have led to the local and state election results have been quite varied.

    One reader from Plymouth felt that “local candidates did not have the resources to combat” the false characterizations made by the DFL

    He went on to write that the DFL “rounded up a big majority among young voters by hammering on the abortion issue, emphasizing the reduction in marijuana penalties, and championing student loan forgiveness.”

    In addition, the claim that the election was all about the ‘safety of democracy’ was really “a euphemism for the defamatory nonsense that Trump was a menace to the Constitution, turned the minds of an adequate number of voters.”

    A candidate from Plymouth asserted that the GOP “needs to run our organization like a business. We need to chase ballots and not votes. We need to recruit and support our candidates 12-18 months in advance.” He pointed out that the typical local Republican candidate had four months to raise money, find volunteers, and create awareness. Their opponents had been preparing for 6 to 9 years.

  • Op-Ed: More Post-Election Analysis and a Clarification

    Vote_ballot_box_cube.jpgThe Nov 10 Post-Election edition struck a nerve for some readers, in particular a couple of sentences.   In retrospect, I (your Newsletter editor since early 2016) should have claimed a by-line for the Election Results article since some have presumed the SD50 Communications Chair authored it. I've updated the by-line on the website.

    To clarify: No,  not everyone on your 4-person Communications Team is planning to leave MN.  That mention incensed a couple of "Never give up" and "MN is the only place worth living" readers.  The sentence has been corrected to say "some" have plans to leave.

    And yes, looking at the SD50 precinct-by-precinct results and the 70% of registered voters turnout confirms that those who voted almost 2:1 for the DFL slate are, indeed, our neighbors.  If they weren't driven by opposing views and values, what was their reasoning? We'd welcome your e-mailed comments if you know reasons why folks in SD50 voted DFL.

    Sure, we may be able to cordially chat with our neighbors about boating, sports, gardening or good restaurants. But delving into deeper, meaningful, issues will quickly reveal the extent of our division. Imagine how a discussion of any one of these might go: crime, taxes, education, "systemic racism", role of government, "emergency powers", election controls enforcement, gun control, state abortion laws.

    Commenters asked whether voting fraud was likely an explanation for the wide margin. I've not seen or heard any allegations of that in MN.  Republicans stepped up this year as election judges to provide better balance for in-person sites, and absentee ballot numbers were lower than in 2020.  The lengthy early-voting timespan, which started Sept. 23 this year, and the use of staff rather than party-balanced election judges in some cities/counties for handling absentee ballots remain areas where "free and fair" election controls could improve.

    A “never give up” caller pointed out a technique Republicans could copy.   Democrats have a strong organized strategy to take advantage of early voting, making sure absentee ballots get to and are returned by those who previously voted absentee such as nursing home residents, apartment dwellers, college students, etc. This has the effect of “nailing down” as many votes as possible before events that might sway opinions occur, such as debates (finally held in late October), heavy concentration of TV ads/counter-ads, or late-breaking news (e.g., the Sept 22 Feeding Our Futures indictments and ties).

    A Nov. 9 analysis article "More of the Same Please" by David Zimmer at Center of the American Experiment garnered similar reactions, and both the article and comments make interesting reading.

    Below are additional analysis article links that provide insights on "What Happened??!??"

  • Auditor Needed: State's Financial Scandals Reason to Reject Blaha

    Ryan_Wilson_Lawn_Sign.jpgby Carmelle & Tim Eickhoff, Precinct Chairs, Edina P-07

    As Edina residents and Minnesotans, we all need Ryan Wilson to be our next Minnesota State Auditor. Our state has had some of the largest financial scandals in its history under the current state auditor’s watch. We have seen news reports of $100 million in daycare fraud, $200 million (at least) in child food program fraud, and $1 billion in Met Council cost overruns and none of this was caught by Auditor Blaha. Julie Blaha’s lack of leadership in executing the role of the state auditor combined with her political bias makes her an ineffective head of a very important department. Her excuses do nothing for taxpayers concerned about the waste and abuse nor comfort those that needed this financial support.

    We have had the opportunity to speak with Ryan at multiple events in Edina. He has the necessary passion, auditing experience, intellect and integrity to serve Minnesota. Ryan Wilson is the only one on the ballot with an independent voice to restore a culture of accountability and transparency in our Minnesota Government. As he says, “it’s not always who you audit, it’s who you don’t audit that’s as important to the taxpayers of Minnesota.”

    We are tired of our hard-earned tax dollars being wasted. This keeps happening without consequences and Minnesotans never get confirmation that the fraud was stopped or where the money trail led.

    We are voting for Ryan Wilson for State Auditor in November because he has the experience running a large medical device auditing company and promises to actually fight waste, fraud and abuse. As a constitutional lawyer, he has already successfully litigated in State and Federal court. He will use the State Auditor’s subpoena power and bully pulpit to bring auditing and accountability back to the auditor’s office on behalf of all Minnesotans.

    Posted by the Edina Sun Current, September 28

  • Phillips (and DFL) Clueless About Scott Jensen Remarks

    Dr_Scott_Jensen_for_Governor.jpg3rd District Congressman Dean Phillips was recently quoted by the Star Tribune as saying, when speaking to the political division in our country, "I'll be trying to be part of the solution." Yet only a few days earlier, he lashed out at Dr. Scott Jensen, Republican candidate for MN Governor.

     On the evening of August 23, all of our state-wide candidates and the Congressional candidates in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th Congressional Districts spoke to a standing-room only forum hosted by the Republican Jewish Coalition. When it came time for Dr. Jensen to speak, he tore up his prepared remarks and spoke to an audience that has experienced how government overreach, coupled with the complicity of the media, can grow from little injustices to something much more insidious.

    The Star Tribune quoted Dr. Jensen as saying,

    "What's happened over the last two and a half years has parallels to what happened with the 1933 banning of books, banning of Jewish authors, burning of books, Kristallnacht in 1938. This was a sequence of events that should never have been happening. It should never have been turned away from. It should have been elevated, but the media wasn't there, and we're seeing the same thing in America today."

    The newspaper's headline? "Minn. GOP governor nominee Scott Jensen triples down on comparing COVID policies to Nazi Germany".

    Dr. Jensen gave a similar speech in April to the group Masks Off Minnesota. A video of a portion of that talk can be heard on a Twitter post by Heartland Signal .

  • Why Wasn’t the Guard Guarding?

    By Larry Frost, Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army (Ret)

    MPD_3rd_Precinct_Burning_1.JPG

    The photo above  is what the Minneapolis Police (MPD) Third Precinct looked like on May 28th, 2020. Just hours before, the police were ordered to pack up their equipment and leave.

    Mayor Frey said the MPD didn’t have the manpower to control the mob, and news reports blamed him for not asking Governor Tim Walz to mobilize National Guard troops to help, with Governor Walz eagerly piling on:

    “Jacob Frey has been cast as the mayor who lost control of his city, enduring criticism from the state’s governor [Walz] that the Minneapolis response to rioting in May over the police killing of George Floyd was an “abject failure.” Star Tribune, August 4th, 2020.

    At the time, foolishly believing anything said by the Red Star Tribune and its sister propaganda organs, I blamed Frey.

    Turns out the Red Star and its sister media hadn’t done their job. Frey asked Walz for the guard the day before 3rd Precinct was burned, and again – frantically- the day of the attack, supported by his then-police Chief Medaria Arredondo.

    Walz’ response to Frey? ‘Well, your request is too vague…start over.’

    Walz claimed the National Guard could not accept a verbal request and required a ‘more detailed plan’.

  • Profiles in Opportunism: Case Study Dean Phillips

    Op-Ed by Jeff Vold

    Dean-Phillips-768x512_Facebook_2021.jpg

    This time last year, we were mourning the loss of 13 brave US service members needlessly killed in Afghanistan during the worst planned and most ill-conceived Military Operation this country has conducted since the 1970's.  Dean Phillips spent the ensuing days sticking his chest out and going on numerous local media outlets talking tough and claiming he was going to "demand accountability" for the inattentiveness and incompetence of the leaders of the Administration and others in the Chain of Command. 

    To this day, he has not named one individual who should have resigned or been fired (there are many).  In other words, he used the deaths of those service members as a political prop to gain favor with the outraged residents of this District.  

    In the end, he did what he always does.  He did the bidding of Nancy Pelosi so as not to damage the Administration. Perhaps he should get notes and calls from a few hundred of us to remind him of yet another broken promise.  His twitter feed and Facebook would also be good places to remind him.  Difficult times do not build moral courage, but they sure do highlight the lack of it.  Dean Failed.   

    Let’s redouble our efforts to support Tom Weiler and get a true leader elected as our 3rd District Congressman.

  • Rep. Phillips Fails Fact-Checks

    Opinion_Sign.jpgIn his constituent email of August 3, Rep Dean Phillips expressed his pleasure with the initial agreement in the Senate over the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022.

    He goes on to state “This legislation will make a historic down payment on deficit reduction to combat inflation …”

    Not so fast, Rep. Phillips. Sen. John Thune (R, S.D), speaking on the floor of the Senate, said, “Sounds like a bill that’s going to address the number one problem facing our nation, which is inflation, and then you actually look at the bill’s contents and will discover that the bill will do nothing to reduce inflation.”

    The Congressional Budget Office, as reported by the Washington Post in an article on August 7, “estimates that, over the next two years, the Inflation Reduction Act is likely to change the inflation rate by less than one tenth of one percent — but it isn’t sure whether the change would be up or down.”

    Phillips believes that “these investments would be fully paid for by making the biggest corporations and ultra-wealthy pay their fair share – with no new taxes on families making $400,000 or less, and no new taxes on small businesses.” CNBC’s Jim Cramer argues that “the Inflation Reduction Act is really a tax on companies and shareholders.” It may not raise the income taxes of many taxpayers, but it will likely reduce the return on their investments.

    Will it help reduce the price of gasoline? Sen. Lindsey Graham (R. S.C.) proposed an amendment to strike a 16.4 cent a barrel tax on imported petroleum products and crude oil refined in the United States. The Democrats in the Senate defeated that amendment.

  • Elkins Promotes Online Comparisons for Healthcare. How About School Comparisons?

    Elkins_on_Guns_(4).jpgRep. Steve Elkins (DFL, Bloomington) recently wrote about his work to enable online cost transparency sites for healthcare.

    He wrote in his official incumbent legislator’s email:

    If you want an idea of how this work would be useful to you as you shop for healthcare, visit the Turquoise Health website and enter your zip code and the name of a healthcare procedure that you’ve had performed at a hospital. You’ll be able to see the cost of that procedure at different Twin Cities hospitals, by health plan. …. The ultimate objective is to create a working marketplace for healthcare in which providers would compete on the basis of both price and quality like other businesses.

    As consumers of healthcare, we can truly see the value of sites that allow cost comparisons of providers with similar quality ratings.

    We can also see where parents of the school age children (and taxpayers, for that matter) would greatly value similar sites that would compare school systems. The Minnesota Public Schools Report Card is a starting point, but comparing schools side-by-side isn't possible. And all schools aren't included.

    To make sure the ratings were fair, they should be applied to all schools (public, private, and charter). We would suggest the use of such metrics as student performance, student-teacher ratios, teacher-administrator ratios, average teacher tenure, and per-capita school funding.

    Of course, parents may elect, after reviewing the ratings, to move their children to a different school. They should be encouraged to do so through the ability to transfer their student’s share of the per-capita school funding with them. Agree, Mr. Elkins?