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Dan Wolgamott for Minnesota House 14A

by Dan Burns on September 2, 2014 · 0 comments

10167917_643720822359792_823418056_nDan Wolgamott is the DFL candidate in this St. Cloud area district. Said district is a very winnable R+2. (It’s hard to see this being any kind of big Republican year in Minnesota, what with consistent DFL strength in the Senate and Governor races. But the state House will still probably be a tough hold.) You can help our candidate here. Yeah, it’s a standard candidate website, so, yeah, his issues page is talking points. But they’re the right points, and note that he has education at the top.

 

The Republican incumbent, Tama Theis, hasn’t had time to do much in the legislature for which one can criticize her. She won a low-turnout special election in early 2013. Cookie-cutter modern-day GOPer, who may mean well, but whose time and effort should really be spent elsewhere than in public office. That would be better for all of us. Including conservatives, even if they haven’t the sense to realize that.
 

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Putting work in its place

by Dan Burns on September 1, 2014 · 0 comments

imagesCACTIZTRIn the early 1900s, workers at Ford plants did 12-hour days, 364 days/year (they got Christmas off). Things have improved. We’re due for another leap forward.
 

The U.S. is out of step with the rest of the world when it comes to work. Our culture promotes overwork, which is why we rank 11th out of 33 developed countries in how many hours we work each week.
 
We work longer hours than the Germans, Canadians, Dutch and Swedes, and yet somehow those countries manage to be highly productive. In the Netherlands, four-day work-weeks are pretty much the rule. Even the tiny African country of Gambia has public workers clocking in Monday through Thursday.
 
It’s high time Americans figured out what much of the world already knows: the shorter work-week is the wave of the future.
(AlterNet)

It’s not explicit, but the article is presumably referencing a standard 4-day, 32-hour work week, with at least the same total compensation as workers receive now. I’ve worked 4-day weeks, but it’s been ten-hour (often, more than ten-hour) days, and those shifts start to seem endless in a hurry.
 
That it’s long past time that the people who actually do the valid work in society should get to toil less, be paid more, and retire earlier if they like, is self-evident truth. Everyone can chip in to do what needs to be done, if a lot less time, effort, and resources were wasted, or worse than wasted, in negative ways. The war machine is only the most obvious example. Aggrandizing plutocrats, and would-be plutocrats, is another.
 
If you like, you can check out Bertrand Russell’s essay (PDF) arguing for a four-hour workday, which having been published in 1935 anticipates the modern movement by some decades. It probably should be noted that Russell himself was a working machine who wrote constantly. Which leads to the key point that in the context of all of this, doing what you love doesn’t count as “work,” even if you are among that fortunate minority that does manage to make a living by it.

 
I know that the suggestion that most people shouldn’t have to incessantly labor in order to barely get by, while the rich man gets ever richer, is terrifying to said rich man’s craven, whimpering, backside-smooching curs, of which there are indeed far too many out there, including online. Well, tough.
 
One problem we progressives seem to have politically is that most people just don’t relate to suggestions that, for example, we’re living in a totalitarian surveillance state worse than Orwell’s 1984, or that fundamentalist theocracy is here because of Hobby Lobby. And I can’t say that I blame them. But a whole lot of people can certainly relate to hating their jobs. That should provide an opening.
 

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It’s a fair bet we will be seeing more of this kind of press conference from Michele Bachmann, using the Sgt.Schultz defense.

 

Kent Sorenson, pled guilty last week, August 27th, in a federal plea deal relating to bribery and falsifying campaign expenditures. If you don’t know or care who Kent Sorenson is, he is a former Iowa state Senator, and he was paid for his endorsement, first of Michele Bachmann, and then Ron Paul.

 

He’s the former Iowa campaign chair for Michele Bachmann’s failed presidential run, the one where GOD told her he wanted her to be president.

 

Sorenson took money to support first Bachmann, and then Ron Paul.

From the Wa Po:

On Wednesday, Sorenson admitted in federal court what he had long adamantly denied: that he took thousands of dollars in payments from the campaigns of Bachmann and Paul in exchange for his endorsement.

The former state senator pleaded guilty to one count of causing a federal campaign committee to falsely report its expenditures and one count of obstruction of justice for giving false testimony to a state independent counsel investigating the payments.

Two sealed documents were filed in court as part of the case, a possible indication that Sorenson is cooperating with federal prosecutors as part of a broader investigation.

 

In Iowa, you can buy a Republican for upwards of $80,000.

 

Apparently, Sorenson is going to jail as part of his plea deal as well. I’m betting he’s not the only one.

 

Since Sorenson pled guilty, the chair of the Ron Paul campaign in 2011/12, Ron Paul’s granddaughter’s husband Jesse Benton, has resigned as the campaign chair of the Mitch McConnell campaign for senate re-election, while continuing to deny any wrong-doing. His alleged ‘bag man’ was Dimitri Kesari, operating a company called Hyllus. No, not the funny vaguely u-shaped bone under you mouth, inside the lower jaw. HYLLUS. Dimitri Kesari went on to be part of Team Mitch McConnell as well. And it is a fair guess that he, like Benton, could very well be facing jail time too.

 

But what about Michele Bachmann?

 

Her defense so far of any potential wrong doing was the Hogan’s Heroes character Sgt. Schultz’s defense, “I KNOW NOTHING”. So then the question will be — did the mostly knows nothing about anything factual Bachmann REALLY NOT KNOW? Or, like Schultz, is she lying through her teeth — and will Sorenson rat her out as part of his deal with the feds?

 

As noted by the Gazette’s Des Moines Bureau:

Last October, Sorenson resigned his Senate District 13 seat in Madison and Warren counties just hours after a special prosecutor found probable cause that he violated Senate rules and may have committed the offense of felonious misconduct in office by “knowingly” making false statements to the Senate’s ethics panel.

In his lengthy report, independent counsel Mark Weinhardt determined there was probable cause that the Milo Republican violated Senate rules by “accepting compensation” from entities associated with former GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann’s campaign “in exchange for his service” during the past caucus season.

And from the Huff Po:

Andy Parrish Affidavit: Michele Bachmann ‘Knew And Approved’ Of Payments To Kent Sorenson
“Congresswoman Bachmann knew of and approved this arrangement,” Parrish said. “She, like the rest of us, understood from Senator Sorenson that it did not run afoul of any Iowa Senate ethics rules. We relied on his representations in this regard.”

Parrish added that his affidavit is “not in any way a rebuke or betrayal to Congresswoman Bachmann,” whom he considers a “personal friend.”

The affidavit included emails from Guy Short, a fundraiser for Bachmann for President, who said Sorenson could be paid by a PAC, and an email from Parrish himself saying, “We’re cool he can’t get paid from a PAC.”

Short also has attracted an Federal Election Commission inquiry because he was paid by MichelePAC while working for Bachmann’s presidential campaign.

and the Bachmann campaign denial, fro the same Huff Po article:

UPDATE: 5:30 p.m. — William McGinley, Bachmann’s campaign counsel, responded to the affidavit in a statement.

The way the media is portraying this story is wrong, reckless, and outrageous. The affidavit by a former employee in fact confirms that Congresswoman Bachmann followed all applicable laws and ethical rules and instructed those working for her to do the same. The alleged arrangement at issue was both lawful and properly reported under federal law. This dispute is between the Iowa Senate and an Iowa Senator: it has nothing whatsoever to do with Congresswoman Bachmann or her political committees. For anyone to suggest otherwise is both dishonest and reprehensible.

And from the aptly named Iowa Republican, which shows how much SHE was paying Sorenson before Ron Paul upped the ante:

Fellow Bachmann staffer Peter Waldron alleges, in a complaint filed with the Iowa Senate Ethics Committee, that Sorenson violated Senate Rule 6 by accepting payments from a presidential campaign or PAC.

In the affidavit, Parrish states that he personally recruited Sorenson to work on the campaign. Parrish notes that Sorenson allegedly told him that he could not be paid by the campaign directly, so Bachmann’s campaign fundraiser Guy Short would pay him via his company, C&M Strategies, as a consultant.

Parrish also provided several emails. One of them, apparently sent from Parrish to Sorenson, states Short agreed to hire Sorenson at a rate of $7,000 per month, plus reimbursement for phone use and purchase of a laptop computer. Parrish says the monthly fee was raised to $7,500, without the phone reimbursement.

“Congresswoman Bachmann knew of and approved this arrangement,” Parrish writes in the sworn affidavit. “She, like the rest of us, understood from Senator Sorenson that it did not run afoul of any Iowa Senate ethics rules. We relied on his representations in this regard.”

 

If bimbo Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, utterer of so many odd and factually false things, doesn’t take the fall, it is likely someone from her family, given the nepotism of her campaigns, WILL have to answer to the feds, and might have to face going to jail.

 

Would Bachmann sacrifice someone near and dear?

 

I think she would, those right wing values only go so far (apparently they include lying), and even right wing family values must have their limits. And if Bachmann throws one of her family under the bus….will they go willingly, or turn on HER?  Both her  husband and her son were key, top advisors/ top power players in her campaigns.  They had, presumably,  to be party to the payolla decisions,  but would they go to jail for wife and/or mom?  Because I do NOT envision Michele  “I didn’t get anything wrong”  Bachmann taking responsibility for anything, EVER.  I expect that if she can get out of jail by playing dumb, as opposed to BEING dumb, she will.  But that could result in someone in her family being among those who take the heat for the bribery decisions.  This is by no means a case where only the Rand Paul/Ron Paul family has kin in the game.

 

As noted almost a year ago, by the STrib, almost a year ago:

WASHINGTON – In the waning days of U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann’s presidential campaign, her husband, Marcus Bachmann, allegedly wrote an e-mail describing his efforts to raise much-needed funds through an outside “super PAC.”

That e-mail is now in the hands of the U.S. Justice Department, which has subpoenaed records from the National Fiscal Conservative (NFC) Political Action Committee as part of a federal grand jury investigation into potentially illegal coordination between the PAC and Bachmann’s campaign.

The grand jury subpoena, first reported in the New York Times, represents a major escalation in the multiple federal and state inquiries that rose from alleged election law violations brought forward last January by campaign whistleblower Peter Waldron.

The grand jury subpoena, obtained by the Star Tribune, covers financial transactions involving an array of top Bachmann campaign officials, including her husband.

A copy of an e-mail purportedly written to Waldron by Marcus Bachmann describes a telephone conversation he had with PAC president Bill Hemrick to raise money for a mailing to evangelicals. Hemrick reportedly suggested that Bachmann contact GOP donor August Busch, who, according to the e-mail, agreed to give $7,000 “thru the NFC super pac.”

The e-mail ended: “Praise the Lord!!”

In his reply, Waldron warned that raising money through the super PAC could violate federal election laws that bar certain types of coordination between campaigns and outside political organizations.

As noted in the Daily Beast:

And Ron Carey, a plugged-in Minnesota GOP veteran who briefly served as Bachmann’s chief of staff, has said Marcus and son Lucas were the congresswoman’s main advisers on the full spectrum of issues. “The only person she talks to as an insider is her husband, Marcus, who’s a wonderful man, and her son Lucas,” Carey told the Star-Tribune. (Carey has been critical of his former boss, telling the Associated Press in February that she was unelectable and even so would not “be ready for the position of the president of the United States.”)

and from the Business Insider:

By most accounts, Dr. Bachmann’s campaign role is unique — he describes himself as his wife’s political “strategist” but also doubles as a personal assistant, press secretary, and confidante.

 

This HAS to up the stakes with the remarkably quiet but still open Congressional ethics inquiry into Bachmann. And we haven’t heard from the DOJ for a while, investigating improper deals with her book, her PAC and her campaign.

From CREW:

Rep. Bachmann appears to have improperly used her presidential campaign resources to promote her memoir, and the Department of Justice is investigating whether the Bachmann campaign illegally coordinated advertising with a super PAC.

 

I had a hunch last year when Bachmann announced she was not running again for Congress that something of this size and import was behind it, not the relatively piddly Heki stolen-home-school-list scandal. THIS could involve serious jail time for a lot of people, including Bachmann.

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Mark_with_LaraMark Schneider is a farmer that cares for land. He uses smart no-till farming practices, planting corn, soybeans and hay in rotation to control insects. (pdf) “Smart” is the way that Schneider likes to do things. In government, Schneider talks about building roads to endure Minnesota weather for lowest long-term costs instead of the cheapest one-time road-resurfacing cost (pdf). Schneider says that by doing government smarter we can save money in many ways. Mark Schneider is running as the representative in the Minnesota House for Dodge, Goodhue, Wabasha and Winona counties (21B).

 

Energy

 

Mark Schneider is advocating for a rural community that can live independently off the grid and also produce profitable crops. Schneider would like to have every rural location have its own solar/wind generation because 90% of electricity is lost by the time it reaches the rural areas. That 90% loss gets charged back to the customer. In trying to verify the 90% number, I found out that this 90% number is a factor of maintenance, distance and usage. No one wants to admit to poor maintenance. What is easily verifiable, is that there is an expectation that as batteries become better and cheaper, the rural areas will find it cheaper to totally switch to off grid. This could be happening as soon as 2018, just 4 years away.

 

Global investment bank UBS has highlighted the challenges facing Australian energy utilities by suggesting that the falling cost of solar and battery storage means that the average Australian household could find it cost-competitive to go off-grid by 2018.

 

Mark Schneider is a strong advocate for his community. Schneider talks to Dayton and other top Democratic officials advocating for higher levels of ethanol. Ethanol really helps local farmers. Ethanol is also a better environment choice. Schneider says that one acre of corn produces 500 gallons ethanol (pdf) and still feeds 500 chickens. It takes 3 gallons of water to make a gallon of ethanol and the water is reusable. Contrast that with over 1800 gallons of water to distill a barrel of oil, yielding 20 gallons of gasoline from tar sands. Since ethanol is a new industry, the efficiency of all parts to the industry have been rapidly improving.
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Steel_Fence_SonoraMX_MTamez_Delegation_012708-1-This is good.
 

On Tuesday, the country’s top immigration court ruled that some migrants escaping domestic violence may qualify for asylum in the United States. The decision, from the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), is a landmark: It’s the first time that this court has recognized a protected group that primarily includes women. The ruling offers a glimmer of hope to asylum-seekers who have fled horrific abuse. The decision has also infuriated conservatives, who claim that the ruling is a veritable invitation to undocumented immigrants and marks a vast expansion of citizenship opportunities for foreigners.
(Mother Jones)

It’s been my experience that at least 90% of the time, anything that infuriates conservatives is in fact a good and righteous deal. And let’s face it: For example, many of us were ambivalent about Obamacare, and cheered its passage largely because it involved “sticking it” to the right wingnuts.
 
Getting back to what’s important, while the scope of domestic violence is bad enough here in the U.S., it’s horrific in many more overtly patriarchal – perhaps “misogynistic” is more accurate – cultures. And most victims are not realistically in a position to try to flee to America, or anywhere else. That domestic violence (physical and/or psychological) is acceptable, even necessary, is a vile mindset that needs to be attacked at its source, and without excuses for, much less enabling of, perpetrators. I don’t have simple, straightforward answers, for how to accomplish that. Nobody does, that I’ve ever seen. But a lot of people are working at some sort of improvement.
 
In related news, you’ve probably noticed that the so-called “border crisis,” with children from Central America heading for Texas or wherever, has vanished from the headlines. Nothing has actually changed.
 

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DSCN6270The newest candidate for Hennepin Sheriff is Eddie Frizell, a Deputy Chief of the Patrol Bureau with the City of Minneapolis Police Department with 21 years of experience. He is also a Colonel in the National Guard with tours in Iraq and Kuwait. Frizell is challenging the current Sheriff Rick Stanek.

 

Just yesterday, Eddie Frizell was endorsed by the Hennepin County DFL after months of consideration. During the endorsement process, Frizell faced tough questions. One person asked Frizell, how would he ensure more probable cause and less profiling. The answer was that when officers better reflect the community, they make better decisions on probable cause. The vote of support was unanimous and enthusiastic.

 

Impressively, Hennepin County Sheriff’s Deputies Association have also endorsed Frizell saying:

 

“It is clear to us that you understand creating a livable, safer community and that this requires a multi-faceted approach involving partnerships at all levels of the community and government. As a result, the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Deputies Association supports your candidacy for Sheriff of Hennepin County!”

 

As a writer, I wanted to contrast the endorsements of both candidates for Sheriff. However I ran into difficulties on the Stanek endorsements.
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Mark Schneider for Minnesota House 21B

by Dan Burns on August 28, 2014 · 0 comments

10547703_742766932431972_5455295111620076817_nHere’s his website. I’m not going to try to pass off Schneider as very progressive. (And the election won’t be easy; it’s an R+7 district per the analysis I use.) But he would be a gargantuan upgrade, because he’s going after “The Draz,” Rep. Steve Drazkowski (R-Mazeppa), one of the premier head cases in contemporary Minnesota politics.
 

I saw a post about a Virginia Republican legislator, Bob Marshall, that ThinkProgress claimed was “easily one of the worst lawmakers in America.” It got me thinking about who would be Minnesota’s worst legislator. My immediate reaction was to nominate Rep. Steve Drazkowski (R-Mazeppa).
 
Moronic
- Drazkowski moronically claims gay marriage ban helps economy
- Drazkowski proposed super majority for future tax increase
- Ban video or photos of animal facilities
- Drazkowski: Lay off the nurses and health aides, we can use baby monitors
- Steve Drazkowksi proposes logging in our state parks to raise revenue
 
Reality Denial
- Knuth gamely tries to explain global warming to Drazkowski
 
Hate
- Drazkowski proposes eliminating pay equity for women
- Drazkowski wants to drug test welfare recipients
- Because creating jobs is such a high priority, Republicans introduce racist immigration law
(The Big E)

(Each individual example is a link to a blog post.)
 
Like most righties in the Minnesota legislature – Glenn Gruenhagen is the only big exception that readily comes to mind – Drazkowski has toned down the formerly loud, proud & crazy public rhetoric, during the past couple of years. But I see no reason to think that his actual ideology has changed one bit. Could even be more extreme, due to the “backfire effect” and/or other factors. Which goes for many MN GOP electeds, as well.
 

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MNGOP’s False Equivalence is Demeaning to Women

by Invenium Viam on August 27, 2014 · 0 comments

demeaning to women

Demeaning to women?

“God … God … why did you put so many a**holes in the world at the same time?” Major Santini, The Great Santini

 

The latest cornerstore hoo-hah to issue from the Hivemind of the Glifnards is that Senator Franken somehow demeaned women by briefly holding two traffic cones to his chest as if they were female breasts. This was in apparent response to DFL Chair Ken Martin’s call for congressional candidate Jim Hagedorn to apologize for his very real, repeated, caustic demeaning of women, minorities, and every other non-male, non-WASP group that happened to come to mind.

 

In a 12-second iPhone video, Franken appeared to be clowning for someone off-camera.

 

While it may be Humor Unbecoming of a Comedian of Franken’s stature as a local stand-up (of fond memory) and former comedy writer and skit-player for SNL — humor at about the same comedic level of sophistication as Mr. Whipple squeezing the Charmin — it hardly descends to the level of demeaning women.

 

That is, unless you think that breasts as reproductive organs are dirty and shameful and that that dirtyshamefulness somehow devolves upon their owners and therefore ought not be used for jokes. If that’s the case, it explains a lot, since pointing out that women have breasts and men don’t is almost as clever a revelation as pointing out that human beings like to have sex … noisy, clumsy, sweaty, messy, wet sex … which seems to be a continuing bugaboo for a good many conservative types who need to be in control, man.

 

Without stating what, exactly, is demeaning to women about Franken’s juvenile behavior, several Republican women in the Minnesota legislature — including State Senator Michelle Fischbach and Representatives Marion O’Neill, Joyce Peppin, Cindy Pugh and Peggy Scott — demanded an apology from Franken in a letter drafted by Party Boss Keith Downey to DFL Chair Ken Martin. “I am so offended,” avowed Representative O’Neill, who joined Downey at a news conference, ”not only this, but his pattern of behavior to degrade women and to put women down. We are in 2014. I think it’s time to apologize and it’s time to move forward and it’s time to stop this terrible behavior.”

 

Sound genuine to you? Me neither. Putting the shoe on the other foot, if any of those women stuffed a cucumber down the front of their jeans and proceeded to dick-swagger bow-legged around the room like they had testicles the size of hen’s eggs suspended in their scrotal sac, would I feel demeaned? U-m-m-m-m-m …. Nope!  I’d just feel mildly amused …

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taxcheatMinneapolis-based Medtronic announced a while ago that it was acquiring an Irish firm and would move its headquarters there. At the time, high-profile Minnesota politicians hemmed and hawed, what with Big Device being a particularly pampered industry in these parts, despite its very mixed record of product development and reliability. Now, though, there is increased criticism of U.S. companies trying to dodge their obligations to the society that makes everything possible for them. And, guess what:

 

While U.S. House Speaker John Boehner and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp have resisted calls for a crackdown on companies adopting overseas addresses to pay lower taxes, both have made money off one of the deals. They also have investments at risk of losing value because of government action.
 
The two lawmakers reported the sale of stock in Covidien Plc within nine days of Medtronic Inc. saying it was planning a takeover, an announcement that sent Dublin-based Covidien’s shares near a 52-week high. The deal, one of several that have sparked a national debate over U.S. corporate tax policy, would put the combined company’s headquarters in Ireland and reduce its tax rate.
(Bloomberg)

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LegacyWebHorizontalI’ve long held forth to anyone I could buttonhole, whom I thought I had a reasonable chance of educating, that Minnesota and the Twin Cities are not some frozen hinterland of the continental upper Midwest, but instead offer some of the best arts, dance, theater and music in the country.

 

Usually I’ve had these conversations in airport bars or at trade shows and business seminars. Few people have been inclined to listen much, but that hasn’t dampened my spiritual calling to civic boosterism. I love Minnesota and the Twin Cities, always have, and if you love something you want to let others know.

 

Minnesota is known for a lot of things — our lakes, our sports teams, our universities, our liberal politics — but it’s not generally known as a center of the arts and a major supporter of the arts community. It should be.

 

While not generally known even to native Minnesotans, our state is home to more than 1,500 arts and cultural organizations. Each year, these organizations pump more than $830 million into the local economy. Of that, the creative sector produces some $700 million in revenues with $430 million in consumer retail sales — equal to about 70% of all sports sector revenues combined. The creative sector employs some 20,000 residents in Minneapolis alone, amounting to about 5% of all jobs in the city. The Playwrights’ Center is recognized across the country as unrivaled in the cultivation of new playwrights and their works. There are nearly 100 theater companies in the state with more theater seats per capita than anywhere in the country except New York City. Per capita revenues for theater companies and dinner theaters is 14 times the national average. Overall, the Twin Cities metro area is rated 6th highest in the Creative Vitality Index nationwide.

 

A lot of that artistic energy, innovation and economic vitality is the legacy of the Legacy Amendment, which I consider one of the greatest collective acts of civic philanthropy in our nation’s history and one which will serve as a model to other states once they begin to realize the astounding social, cultural and economic benefits it produces.

 

For those who need some background, in 2008 Minnesotans passed the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment Act (Legacy Act) to the Minnesota State Constitution. The objectives of that legislation were to protect, enhance, and restore lakes, rivers, streams and groundwater; to preserve clean drinking water sources; to protect, enhance and restore wetlands, prairies and forests and renew wildlife habitat; to support parks and trails; and to preserve Minnesota’s arts and cultural heritage. To accomplish those objectives, the Legacy Act called for an increase to the state sales tax of three-eighths of one percent (0.00375%) beginning on July 1, 2009 and continuing through 2034, to be divided into four funds: 33% for a Clean Water Fund; 33% for an Outdoor Heritage Fund; 19.75% for an Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund; and 14.25% for a Parks and Trails Fund. Note that this self-imposed tax was in addition to the Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund (ENRTF) established in 1988. The Legacy Act passed with a 56% majority, even though a blank ballot counted as a “No” vote, proving to the many doubters that Minnesotan’s ongoing love affair with our state’s astonishing natural beauty and priceless water resources meant far more to them than a handful of pocket change.

 

To date, here’s how the Legacy Act funding breaks down (diagram includes ENRTF funding):

 

Legacy Act Funding

 

http://www.legacy.leg.mn/funding-overview

 

Looking just at the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, you can see why Minnesota enjoys such a lively, thriving arts community and creative sector economy: by this year’s end, for just the first five years of the Act, Minnesotans will have invested more than a quarter-billion dollars in our arts community. An investment of that kind of capital in any area of human endeavor is bound to have an enormous impact. In fact, that’s just what we are seeing.

 

In time, Minnesota will become known for more than bone-chilling winters and sky blue waters. We’ll become known as the center of arts and culture in the center of the continent and a magnet for the best and brightest. At the rate things are going, it won’t take long …

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