Minnesota Network for Progressive Action

About Comments
The mnpACT! blog welcomes all comments from visitors, which are immediately posted, but we also filter for spammers:
  • No active URLs or web links are allowed (use www.yourweb.com).
  • No drug or pharma- ceutical names are allowed.
  • Your comment "Name" must be one word with no spaces and cannot be an email address.
You should also note that a few IP addresses and homepage URLs have been banned from posting comments because they have posted multiple spam messages.

Please be aware we monitor ALL comments and reserve the right to delete obvious spam comments.

Politics Blogs - Blog Top Sites

Listed on BlogShares

site search

Site Meter
  Progressive Political Blog

Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

This Is Not A Transparent Process

Category: GOP House Republicans
Posted: 05/23/17 13:58

by Dave Mindeman

We have a serious transparency problem in our Minnesota legislature. They cannot get things done while the public is watching.

These continuous last minute and late night flurries at the end of session are not in the public interest. The horsetrading in the dead of night leaves all of us wondering how it will affect us - and too often we find out about big changes only when we have to deal with it directly.

We shouldn't have be surprised by what our legislature did in the dead of night. We should be able to see exactly what was done and what we need to do to prepare for it.

House Republicans have printed things overnight to vote on immediately in the morning. They have passed bills knowing they will be vetoed and only change them when they can make the deals while no one is watching.

Minnesota ranks 25th in the nation for transparency. We have never addressed this and continue to make it worse.

We have a very adequate amount of time to get the state business done during a regular session. More than adequate. But petty partisanship that only listens to special interests (both sides guilty) seeks to delay and obstruct until the sunlight disappears.

This state deserves better. We can handle the truth. You don't need to keep us in the dark. You are making being a legislator a harder job than it needs to be.

Don't do that. Be honest with all of us. Let the public have a proper say.

The Budget Is About Numbers - Not Policy

Category: GOP House Republicans
Posted: 05/21/17 13:40

by Dave Mindeman

We always seem to come down to these end of session disasters when the Republicans control too much of the budget process. Dayton has pointed out the major reason for why this happens.

Policy positions.

The budget is about numbers. Dollars spent. Taxes. Revenue. It is not about the Met Council structure. It is not about vouchers. It is not about restricting local governments on policy making.

And if you listen in to the policy makers, they really are not that far apart on the numbers. The guts of it. The real budget.

But Republicans (mostly in the House) cannot let go of those policy issues. They have to ram them into the omnibus bills. If they don't get what they want in the early part of the session, they revisit them now - and it is not appropriate.

The business of the state requires the budget to be passed - on time. And the Republicans continue to fail to do that. And here we are again.

Because of policy issues.

Whether or not vouchers can be utilized in education has to be debated separately. And it should be done with hearings and openness. Not railroaded into an education bill. Not squeezed in, in secret, without proper transparency. But it happened.

Other policy issues get slapped into defunding this, defunding that. Health and Human services is especially vulnerable. Please, just pass a clean HHS bill that meets the needs of what we know. Don't speculate on motives or wants - the changing demographics speak for themselves. Deal with that - just don't add arbitrary policy.

Why is this so hard to understand?

A Day Of Just Living

Category: Society
Posted: 05/19/17 19:47

by Dave Mindeman

I was trying hard today to take my mind off of politics. So as I ran my errands, and I made some observations.

People and cell phones are a permanent condition. As I was waiting for an oil change, I watched some of the people sitting in the waiting area. None of them could notice me because their heads were down looking at their phone screen and whisking their thumbs back and forth.

Here's is where I show how outdated I am. I have a cell phone, but I only use it for actual phone calls. I don't watch movies. Don't get Netflix. Don't check my e-mail. Don't even text. I call somebody. Say what I want to say and I hang up. I know this is a very novel concept of communication and I freely admit that I am an historical relic, but that is all I have ever done with a cell phone. When I want to take a picture, I use an actual camera. You remember those? They still are useful for that purpose. It is digital, so I am not back in the Kodak Carousel slide era, but I do not use a phone for pictures. I realize that the vast majority of people can never go back to using more than one electronic device on their daily excursions, but this is just me.

While I sat in the waiting room, I wondered if anybody knew there was more than one person there. I would see people walk in the door - plop down on a chair and immediately resurrect their phone from various places on their bodies. It was like a Pavlovian response. If I would have stood up and said hi, I think I would have given them a heart attack. They remained in that position until they were called to pay the bill. Then they got in their car and probably plugged in their phone.

I had lunch at Baker's Square and noticed that there was a definite preponderance of gray hair in the clientele. Which was kind of surprising because it wasn't "pie" day. Still, during the day, restaurants seem to be pretty dependent on the older generation. Retirees meet each other at restaurants and socialize. I was in the restaurant for about 45 minutes and did not see one person leave. Is this an all day event? The older gentlemen get distinct pleasure out of teasing the waitresses while their wives scowl at them. But it is obviously a serious custom in some of these dine in restaurants. My son will pretty much only eat at Boston Market or Panera Bread. Other places take too long and have too many fried foods for his taste. When I suggest Olive Garden, or Red Lobster, or even Denny's, I get the college teen patented eye roll. So I don't suggest it much.

As I read the paper, I noticed another one of those "bathroom law" shenanigans was being introduced in another state. That's another thing I don't understand. When I'm in a public rest room, I never strike up conversations. I mean I really don't need to discuss why they are there, if they should be there, and what is their legal rights when there. Really? Does anybody really want to get into somebody's "business"? In a bathroom? When I go to a Twins game, somebody should just ask ball parks to end the "trough" method. A long trough on the floor and guys just lining up along it, urinating. If you want to make a law, get rid of those things. Just make more enclosed stalls. Keep it private, for everybody, and nobody gets hurt.

And one more thing. Do we really need all the trashy talk on the internet. The comments section have become verbal vomit. People like to point out mistakes with a bunch of name calling for good measure. If you disagree with someone, you need to question their heritage for some reason. Why is that? What kind of pleasure is derived from that kind of behavior? I love a good argument. I don't mind a civil disagreement - in fact I learn from that type of exchange. But the nastiness?. When I blog, I get Trump supporters whose idea of an argument is to spew an insult. Usually it has nothing to do with the topic or its relevance. Just an insult...which I have to assume must make them feel better for having said it. Because it serves no other purpose.

Well, I tried to stay apolitical, but these days that is pretty much impossible. I'm back home. Maybe I'll watch a Twins game and just veg out for awhile. I'm sure there will be plenty of drama soon enough.


« May 2017 »
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31

Latest posts


(one year)



RSS Feeds

RSS 0.91
RSS 2.0

Powered by
Powered by SBlog
Copyright © Minnesota Network for Progressive Action. All rights reserved. Legal. Privacy Policy. Sitemap.