Innocence Lost

Since taking office in 2003, Tim Pawlenty has done an admirable job of holding to his conservative values and staving off those in the legislature who would pluck that last bastion of political innocence. From saying no to an omnibus higher education bill last May to drawing the line at the appointment of a state […]

Making Hay in the Winter

There’s going to be another inquiry into why the bridge fell. On top of the NTSB, the Legislative Auditor, and the Governor Pawlenty-hired consultants, we’re going to have the Minneapolis law firm of Gray Plant Mooty looking into things on behalf of a bi-partisan State House-Senate committee. One wonders why we need another such investigation. […]

Over the Coals 2007

BUSINESS On the other hand, we recommend that you call Duluth “Paris.”A New York marketing research firm hired by Meet Minneapolis, the Minneapolis Convention and Visitors Association, to help with a branding campaign for Minneapolis and St. Paul came up with the suggestion that Minneapolis and St. Paul refer to themselves in their marketing materials […]

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Who Doesn’t Love Sam & Sylvia Kaplan?

Years ago, comedian Bill Murray was talking with the press about great careers, longevity, and what really defines success. Murray had had several hits at the time, made good money, was considered for practically every big-budget comedy script in town, and by any Hollywood standard was the envy of his peers. "But I want to […]

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Tripping the Road Fantastic

Soon you may be heading off on a thanksgiving vacation. The trip may be short or it may be long. Unless your relations live next door, however, you will have to make that journey in an automobile. These days that will likely mean a minivan or small European "touring wagon" (which Chrysler attempted to call […]

Capulets and Montagues

My neighborhood is solidly Democrat. As I walked through it one autumn day two years ago, I made a point of counting lawn signs. On one half-hour walk, I saw eighteen Kerry signs and only one for Bush. I made virtually the same walk the other day, for the same purpose, but with a different […]

Managing to Win

About a year ago, after Minneapolis Mayor R. T. Rybak had celebrated his rout of Peter McLaughlin by diving off the stage into the arms of his supporters, I noticed John Blackshaw wandering through the crowd of well-wishers, a slight smirk on his lips and a look of satisfied exhaustion in his eyes. Blackshaw had […]

“The Only Other Job I’d Like”

The candidate was running late, of course. So, on a sweltering June morning, I was left to wander the third-floor headquarters of Peter Hutchinson’s gubernatorial campaign and consider its architect. Two floors above a coffee shop and the funky Architectural Antiques, someone erected temporary walls to form a couple of small offices, and in one […]

Goddess Revealed

I was beginning to suspect that I was the last person on the planet who hadn’t read The DaVinci Code, and so I remedied that situation last weekend. I like a good page turner as much as the next guy, and this was a good one. But man, I can sure see why this is […]

Guns in the City

The sound of the well-made gun is precise. If you pull the slide back smoothly, the sound of the hammer locking back echoes with a sharp “clock” through the hollow grip. Slap a magazine into the grip, pull the slide back a little more and let it go. The sharp “smack” tells you a bullet […]

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