41 Uboats sunk in 3 weeks.
Roots of Cold War NATO naval policy.
41 Uboats sunk in 3 weeks.
Roots of Cold War NATO naval policy.
Jamestown, North Dakota.
15,000 people. At confluence of the James and Pipestem rivers, about 90 miles west of Fargo. Home to a state hospital and psychiatric prison (which sounds like something the MN DFL would build for Republicans, but it’s really pretty normal), a school for the profoundly handicapped, a college (my alma mater, as it happens), and a whooole bunch of agricultural businesses…
…and, soon, an iron mill.
A North Dakota company plans to build a $60 million iron producing plant near Jamestown, N.D., using iron ore concentrate from Minnesota.
A subsidiary of Bismarck-based Carbontec Energy Corp. called E-Nugget North Dakota LLC has unveiled plans to churn out 100,000 metric tons of iron annually using North Dakota sugar beet residue in the mix instead of coke coal.
It’s an interesting project; the plant will extract ore from tailings from the old iron mines up north that used to be economically un-feasible to extract. There are millions of tons of now-usable ore piled up up north.
It’s Minnesota ore, and the research has Minnesota ties…:
The E-Nugget iron making process was developed by Carbontec and Michigan Technological University over the past five years, including large-scale batch tests at a Minneapolis facility, John Simmons, president of Carbontec, said Monday. The company already has plans to expand to a 300,000-ton plant if the startup goes well.
But the plant is being built in North Dakota. Granted, it’s Jamestown, which – as it’s been throughout most of it’s history – has been safely tucked away from excessive prosperity. 100 miles east of the oil fields and their jobs, and 90 miles west from cha-cha, booming Fargo (yes, I said “cha-cha Fargo”; it makes sense in context), Jamestown is one of few parts of North Dakota that isn’t overheating economically so far.
But it’s not Flint or Newark or Cleveland. It’s not even Minneapolis, much less Grand Rapids or Virginia, unemployment-wise.
So why there?
Simmons said the Jamestown site is well-situated because of easy access to sugar beet residue feedstock and also because it is adjacent to a Great River Energy power plant and directly on the BNSF rail line. He said the iron ore concentrate could move from the Grand Rapids area to North Dakota in rail cars that move western coal east but generally have been empty on their return trip west.
“We can get the right quality material from Grand Rapids and the rail routes make sense,” Simmons said.
So let’s get this straight; Jamestown ND, which is about 90 miles from the sugar beet waste, and probably 300 from the iron ore tailings, gets the plant.
Magnetation expects to start construction on a fourth plant northwest of Coleraine this year. That plant will produce 2 million tons of concentrate [that's the part you dig up, before you process it into iron] annually and will be ready to feed a new Indiana pellet plant the company now is building to supply partner AK Steel with iron ore for its furnaces by 2015. That new Itasca County facility is expected to employ another 160 people. The Coleraine plant ultimately will shift to get its ore from traditional open pit mining. (The company has shelved plans to build a recovery plant at Calumet.)
Simmons noted Carbontec also created an E Nugget Minnesota LLC and considered building the plant in Minnesota using wood waste from logging sites as the reductant or binder. He said the company chose North Dakota instead, in part because it’s so much easier to get permits in North Dakota.
Score one for the DFL Environmental Lobby! More jobs exported to North Dakota!
Let’s let that one sink in; between taxes and permits, it’s cheaper to ship rock 300 miles than it is to process it in Minnesota.
Thanks, Minnesota DFL!
“Protect Minnesota”, the checkbook advocacy group run by Representative Heather Martens (DFL-HD66A), usually complains that gun control is supported by the vast majority of Americans and Minnesotans; that they are the real majority.
They put out this graph showing what groups spend what:
And it sure looks like the pro-gun groups outspend the orcs, doesn’t it?
But what does the graph not tell you about political spending on this issue?
The NRA gets get the uncountably vast majority of its funding from individual members; the orcs like to complain that they’re funded by the firearms industry – as if that were in and of itself a black mark against the group, even if it were true in any meaningful context.
I’m not familiar with the NSSF’s funding, and I know the GOA is even more grassroots than the NRA.
As to the Brady Factory and the VPC? Both are funded by the Joyce Foundation. As to “Mayors Against Illegal Guns?” It’s largely funded by big-government utopian plutocrat Michael Bloomberg and his circle, and most of that money seems to go to paying the group’s members’ bail and legal costs.
A slew of bars in New Jersey, including 13 franchised TGI Fridays, were busted for selling caramel-colored rubbing alcohol as top-rail scotch, among other things:
At one bar, a mixture that included rubbing alcohol and caramel coloring was sold as scotch. In another, premium liquor bottles were refilled with water – and apparently not even clean water at that.
State officials provided those new details Thursday on raids they conducted a day earlier as part of a yearlong investigation dubbed Operation Swill.
Twenty-nine New Jersey bars and restaurants, including 13 TGI Fridays, were accused of substituting cheap booze – or worse – for top-shelf brands while charging premium prices.
That would explain a lot of the “top shelf” scotch I’ve had, come to think of it…
Just think how much worse this story would be if Britons had the means and legal right to resist violent crime.
When American gun-grab advocates talk about the UK’s crime rate, they gloss over the fact that general violent crime in the UK Is higher than in the US.
Someone tell Representative Martens.
In the very month that ObamaCare passed, March 2010, the groups of Americans that were organizing to fight against ObamaCare were targeted by the agency that will implement ObamaCare. That’s the essence of the scandal. But it is not the full extent of it.
IRS workers union chief Colleen Kelley had access to President Obama and, according to White House logs, met with him on March 31, 2010. The abuse of Tea Party, conservative, Hispanic, pro-life, Christian, and Jewish groups, which must have been in the works for weeks or even months prior, formally began the following day. Americans became April Fools for continuing to believe that we had a government of the people, by the people and for the people. As of April 1, 2010, we had a government arraying itself against the people, or at least against some of the people. According to polls taken at the time, a majority opposed ObamaCare. So it could be said that the IRS was arrayed against a majority of American voters who were organizing to protest the government’s expansion under Obama.
Government’s current aim seems to be to condition people to:
Not saying Obama’s a petty tyrant. Merely that tyrants need lots of people like him and his enablecharge make their job possible.
Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:
Time for the monthly newsletter. Senator Franken’s projects and grades:
Preventing the Next Financial Collapse. Al is working on amendments to banking law relating to credit ratings. Sorry, Al, but phony credit ratings didn’t cause the collapse, that was a combination of existing government regulations: CRA forcing lenders to make bad loans in the name of affordable housing, FNMA downgrading its definition of “prime” to guarantee the bad loans, Chris Cox at SEC suddenly implementing “mark to market” rules that panicked investors and triggering Lehman Brothers bankruptcy. All those regulations remain so tinkering with credit rating law isn’t even closing the barn door after the horses are gone, it’s more like gilding the weather-vane on the barn roof, worse than useless. Grade: F.?
As the economy “recovers” but never improves, it’s necessary to keep up appearances by continuing to try to throw blame off of government, for the benefit of the low-information voter.
Creating Jobs with the Energy Section of the New Farm Bill. Al’s really proud of this section, it’s chock full of subsidies for wind, advanced biofuels, biomass, the whole nine yards. We’re sure to wean off foreign oil this time! Geez, Al, ever heard of Solyndra? If you want to make America energy independent, open up federal lands. The President brags that his administration has signed leases to look for oil, but forgets to mention that they denied permits to actually pump the oil. North Dakota is showing the world that the best way for government to help energy production is . . . get the Hell out of the way. Throwing another boatload of money down the same Alternative Energy rathole will produce jobs only for smooth talking hucksters. Grade: F.
Upgrading Minnesota’s Water Infrastructure. Any time a Democrat talks about infrastructure, I grab my wallet. This bill might be the exception to the rule. He’s talking about the Water Resources Development Act, which is Congress’s way of funding a bunch of water-related activities ranging from flood control to water treatment plants to wetland preservation projects. It comes up for renewal every few years and contains most of the funding for the Army Corps of Engineers, for example. We always can nitpick particular line items but as spending bills go, this one isn’t too bad. Control of federal waters is a reasonable component of regulating interstate commerce so this act is more Constitutional than most. Grade: C+.
Breaking the Veterans Affairs backlog. Al, in the Senate, and Tim Walz in the House, introduced the Quicker Benefits Delivery Act. It prohibits the VA from requiring additional medical exams by in-house doctor if the disabled veteran already provided one from a non-VA doctor. They also tinker with the rating system for full or partial disability, hoping this will speed claims processing. Veterans are a federal responsibility so this is Congress’ job and the backlog is a disgrace. We spend millions of dollars every hour sending men and women to fight wars all over the world; the very least we can do is take care of our disabled vets when they come home. I don’t know enough about disability law to know if it’ll work but kudos to Al for at least trying to do something to make it right. Grade: A.
GPA this month: D
It’s a gift.
SCENE: It’s May of 1912 – a few weeks after the sinking of the SS Titanic captured the world’s headlines. Scene fades in on the SS Metaphoric – a steamship billed as “The Next Best Thing To The Titanic!” – plowing through the icy North Atlantic. It’s a dark, chilly evening, with the light from a few stars illuminating the occasional glint of ice on the horizon.
CUT TO the First Class passenger lounge. A group of passengers – Garth Muller, Ludwig von Nicholaus, Joe Smith and Otto Klarinette – are drinking and discussing the affairs of the day.
CUT TO deck. Zoom in to crow’s nest, where the lookout, a plucky cockney named Tim Shaw, reacts with alarm to an oncoming apparition. He picks up a phone.
SHAW: ”Iceberg! Right ahead!
CUT TO Bridge. Captain O. B. Barry, who was appointed Captain five years earlier after serving on cruise line’s board of directors for two years, picks up the phone.
BARRY: Let me be clear. It’s OK. We’re too big to sink. And we inherited our charts from the previous captain!
SCENE: Ship plows into iceberg. Montage of scenes of flooding below decks.
VON NICHOLAUS: What was that?
BARTENDER: I think we hit an iceberg, sir.
MULLER: Haw haw haw! Time to cash it in! This boat’s gonna sink! We’re all doomed!
SMITH: Um, hang on, guys; this room is crawling with wood tables, veneer, kegs, things that we can make float. There’s a spool of rope on the deck outside…
VON NICHOLAUS: Nope! It’s gonna sink!
KLARINETTE: Of course, since the cruise line is a corporation, falsely given a human-like existence to protect the banksters, nobody will be held responsible for it!
MULLER: Who cares! We’re going down! Bartender, pour me another one! Everyone’s gonna die!
VON NICHOLAUS: It’s like we were taught back in Vienna…
SMITH hauls empty tables out to promenade deck outside, slashes rope into 12 foot lengths and starts lashing tables together. BARTENDER starts frantically opening the beer taps, letting beer and soft drink kegs empty into the drains.
KLARINETTE: they’re calling “women and children first!”
MULLER: Pfft. The way this line was run, they’re better off dead anyway
SMITH and BARTENDER wrestle empty beverage kegs into place and lash them below te tables, effecting a crude but effective floatation device.
VON NICHOLAUS: If only the cruise line board of directors had listened to us!
KLARINETTE: We warned them!
VON NICHOLAUS: At the 1908 Cruise Line board meeting! “Don’t ram icebergs!”, we said. And they shouted us down!
MULLER: Well, this’ll show them!
VON NICHOLAUS: all these sheeple have it coming! They could have supported us. They deserve what they get!
SMITH and the BARTENDER attach a rope rail around the upturned table legs. SHAW moves a small kitchen grill onto the raft, and starts cooking hot hogs. The BAND starts playing “Nearer My God To Thee”.
KLARINETTE: (Watching crowds racing for lifeboat) Stupid short-sighted sheeple.
SMITH and the BARTENDER start waving women and children aboard the the raft. As the water laps up to the edge of the raft, they beckon the band aboard. They start playing “We Are The Champions”
SMITH: (as water floats the raft and starts to flow into the bar) Guys! Raft!
MULLER: Haven’t you heard? The ship is sinking. Belly up, the worlds come to and end!
VON NICHOLAUS: we’re all gonna die.
KLARINETTE: because the sheeple didn’t listen to us.
MULLER: we’ve all for it coming.
SMITH: No, listen – the raft. It floats!
VON NICHOLAUS: What? When I could be on a ship?
CAPTAIN BARRY (over the loudspeaker): Remember; it’s the previous captain’s fault, and you didn’t build or launch those lifeboats.
(Raft crowded with passengers floats free and paddles over to lifeboats as ship slips beneath the waves.)
VON NICHOLAUS: Stupid sheeple! We told you so!
If I’ve blocked you on Twitter or in this comment section, it’s not because you’re a troll, a Bobblehead or a dolt.
It’s because you’re a troll, a Bobblehead or a dolt who has ceased to amuse me.
That is all.
The session over, their swag forcibly extracted and readied for handing over to their benefactors, the DFL – via their proxies in the mainstream media, have turned back to their favorite parlor game…
…which is “bitching about being called the Democrat-Farmer-Labor Party”.
Although after this past session I’m willing to call them “ic”, if it means that much to them.
Joe Doakes from Como Park emails, channeling Will Rogers:
The woman who was in charge of the unit that delayed conservative groups their tax exempt status has been promoted.
She’s now in charge of Obamacare, where she has the power to delay conservatives health insurance reimbursement for medical treatments.
Previously, she could annoy you; now, she can kill you. That’s what Progressive Government means – it gets progressively worse!
We’ve got a Stage III government.
I got an email from a friend of mine commenting on the Strib’s headline re the budget:
Yes, they squeezed out a budget. Looking at the budget, I could not have given a better headline. What a stinker.
It needs to be flushed in 2014.
Did your salary rise 8% last year?
Why, no – I’ll bet it held even if you were lucky and dropped if you weren’t.
Did the state or national economygrow 8%?
You’re joking, right?
Minnesota is spending, and taxing, 8% more next year than last.
Are the roads going to be 8% better?
Are your kids going to learn 8% more?
Will the Achievement Gap dip 8%? (Given that the MNDFL aboachieve graduation testing, probably the opposite).
Will the unions that bought and paid for this Legislature hire 8% more dues-payinggovernment workers?
Now you’re getting warm.
BONUS QUESTION to everyone who sat out that last election, or voted third-party, because of some GOP transgression or another; was it worth it?
Not sure what MNGOP representative said that [UPDATE: it was Pat Garofalo] but it may be the iconic statement about this past session. It was a five month union pork orgy.
Here’s the moment when the vote passed on Monday, 68-66, after the DFL waited on the vote until the crowd of daycare providers who’d stood vigil all weekend had to go back to work, and the galleries were packed with union droogs:
Of course, the rule is you gotta keep quiet in the gallery. Respect the people’s institution and all that.
If you or I or the Gun owners Civil Rights Alliance or Ducks Unlimited had done that, they’d have been ejected.
But the jabbering baboons in purple shirts have the run of the place. And they’ll be doing their cheering in your wallet soon.
SCENE: MITCH Berg is walking away from the Capitol building. He runs into Avery LIBRELLE, who is dressed in a green AFSCME tshirt.
LIBRELLE: Well, that was a great session!
BERG: The DFL’s union benefactors made out like bandits.
LIBRELLE: We sure did!
BERG: And with a two-chamber majority, you spent months working on gun grabs that’ll never affect crime, a bullying bill that’ll stop no bullying, a gay marriage bill that is a huge priority for a small part of maybe 2% of the population, and what? Half a day on a budget?
LIBRELLE: You’re just mad because you lost.
BERG: No, I’m mad because you’re screwing up the state. Three more yearsof this and Minnesota will be a cold California.
BERG: And the big daddy of them all – the Daycare Union Jamdown.
LIBRELLE: What “jamdown?” All we’re asking for is a chance to vote to organize. It’s democracy! Don’t you conservatives like democracy?
BERG: Don’t get cute. This isn’t democracy – its democracy Mark Ritchie-style. The unions are packing the vote with unlicensed providers that the union knows will vote for them, many of whom haven’t worked in daycare or personal care in years. Look – providers could already join unions. Out of 11,000 licensed providers, less than 100 ever did. 86% of licensed providers oppose the union.
LIBRELLE: That’s a lot of numbers. My head is spinning.
BERG: Now – do you think the DFL, AFSCME and the SEIU wold have wasted a year or two of organizing, and five months of legislative arm-twisting, with several million a year in union dues and DFL money at stake, if they didn’t know they had enought ringers to jam the vote down? Anyone who answers “no” probably also thinks Minnesota has the country’s best election system.
LIBRELLE: But why shouldn’t daycare workers and PCAs have the right to organize for better pay and working conditions?
BERG: Organize against whom? To get better pay from whom?
LIBRELLE: Management! The bosses!
BERG: They’re their own bosses. They manage their own businesses! Many of them went into the field because they wanted to be their own boss, be their own management. And they get paid from their clients – parents and patients.
LIBRELLE: Wait. Back up. What’s this “their own boss” bit?
BERG: They’re independent businesspeople.
LIBRELLE: (stares blankly)
BERG: They run their own business.
LIBRELLE: (Stares; lips move, but no sound comes out)
BERG: They’re their own bosses. They work for themselves.
LIBRELLE: But…everyone has a boss.
BERG: They have clients. Parents. Patients. Te people who pay them.
LIBRELLE: But…no. Everyone has a boss!
LIBRELLE: EVERYONE HAS A BOSS!
BERG: Medic! I think I broke Avery…
Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:
I posted this to an earlier thread but it deserves more thought:
Have you thought through the implications of your defense, [regular commenter Emery, whom some of the Mitchketeers think is long-banned former comment-section regular "Doug"; I don't think it's him, unless he's been on some serious meds]?
You suggest IRS agents misused the power of their office for partisan political purposes, not because Obama ordered it, but because he was incompetent to stop them.
That implies government agents are predisposed to abuse their powers but are restrained only by competent managers, i.e. Republicans.
The sensible conclusion is to give over as little of our lives to government agents as possible, and in those areas, put Republicans in charge.
I completely agree with the conclusion that flows from your analysis; I’m surprised you do.
See also: Fast and Furious, Secret Service hookers, government conventions in Vegas, AP wiretaps . . . the logic could apply to almost every scandal and for the exact same reason: we shouldn’t have given them that power in the first place. The Framers were smarter than we know.
To this I’d add that this blog has noted that the government and its handmaidens in the media and the lefty “alternative” media have spent the past six years demonizing every form of conservative thought, from fever-swamp leftybloggers chanting “Conservatives are Racist” to Janet Napolitano putting every form of conservative thought on a terror watchlist.
If you build a government around the notion of demonizing your opponents, your government will demonize your opponents.
James Taranto puts a solid full-nelson on most of the Democrats’ rationalizations for the IRS scandal. You should read the whole thing.
In his testimony to the Senate Watergate Committee–whose hearings opened 40 years ago today–John Dean famously called that scandal “a cancer on the presidency.” If Obama, his campaign or his White House aides are directly implicated in the IRS’s abuses, this will be another cancer on the presidency, remediable by resignation or impeachment.
But if the IRS acted without direction from above–if it “went rogue” against the Constitution and in support of the party in power–then we are dealing with a cancer on the federal government. That, it seems to us, is a far direr diagnosis, one whose treatment is likely to be radical and risky.
Corrupt President, or corrupt entire government?
Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:
This column annoys me.
The DFL is running amok, enacting all kinds of seriously stupid legislation. And it’s the Republicans’ fault, because they’re not holding them back.
The Republicans ran for election on social issues, which the Strib ridiculed at the time, and lost. Now, the DFL is pushing through their extremely leftist versions of the same social issues the Strib mocked the Republicans for running on.
You hated our opinions when we were running for office so you did everything in your power to make sure we didn’t get elected. But now that we aren’t in office because we didn’t get elected, you blame us for that, too.
He references a column by Strib board chair Mike Sweeney; you should read the link.
The same DFL employees who gave us “E-Pulltabs” as a means of supplying “the state’s share” of an extorted payoff to an out-of-state billionaire for his real-estate upgrade (which fell 95% short of predictions, as predicted by certain right-wing bloggers) are going to try to take a mulligan and get it right on the second try, says this piece from the MinnPost’s James Nord:
The governor’s proposal would increase the cigarette tax from $1.23 per pack to $2.52 per pack – a larger jump than the 94-cent target he’d earlier proposed — and would require retailers and wholesalers to make a one-time payment on existing inventory that would funnel $24.5 million into the stadium reserve account, solving the shortfall there.
Where have we seen this before?
Oh, yeah – cigarette taxes never, ever raise the money they’re supposed to. They rarely get 2/3 of the way to their goals. Ever.
And a “one-time tax on existing inventory?” Look for a fire sale on smokes the week before the tax goes into effect, and for chain convenience stores to shuffle inventory out of state pronto.
Then, if electronic pulltabs or linked bingo games fail to produce the revenue necessary to fund the state’s appropriation bonds for the stadium ["if" - heh. Ed], the commissioner of Minnesota Management and Budget would have the authority to direct revenue from a closed corporate income tax loophole toward the stadium.
Frans said that closing the “tax avoidance loophole” would prohibit the current legal practice of some Minnesota companies that avoid paying full corporate income taxes on sales they make by shielding themselves through a subsidiary in a different state. He said more than 20 states have similar regulations in effect.
Dear Mr. Nord: Not that I’m going to tell you how to do your job, but did you happen to ask Mr. Frans what states those were? And how they’re doing in terms of business climate? How well “closing” that particular “loophole” worked?
Remember – these are the same people who said “E-Pulltabs” would…y’know…work.
That measure is projected to bring in $26 million in the first year and roughly $20 million annually after that, although those totals could change as the conference committee works out the specifics of their compromise.
Frans said with the new contingency plan, which would also be backed up by current taxes on suites and memorabilia if for some reason it doesn’t perform, officials are ready to close the book on the shaky stadium funding issue.
“We believe it’s reliable, it’s consistent,” he said.
Messinger Dayton Administration ”believed” a lot of things that didn’t turn out to be true.
If only we had an institution, with printing presses and transmitters and websites, staffed by people who see themselves as part of a truth-seeking monastic order, whose job it was to tell the public about these things.
I’ve opposed the death penalty for a long time.
I actually support it, for every reason but one – the inevitability of executing the wrong person (and it appears all but inevitable that there’s been at least one and possibly two erroneous executions in recent years). Executing the wrong person is a double crime; society kills an innocent person, and a guilty party goes free, leaving a terrible crime unpaid-for.
So I oppose the death penalty for one reason, and one only.
But there are cases were, I gotta confess, I’m really just going through the motions.
(The suspect is innocent until proven guilty)
Here’s the link for Childcare Freedom. They need your help today more than ever.
And here’s the Center of the American Experiment study that Bill Glahn and Christina Pierson talked about. You can also call Governor Dayton to have him – hopefully – veto all or parts of this stupid bill: 800-657-3717 201-3400
Today, the Northern Alliance Radio Network – America’s first grass-roots talkradio show – brings you the best in Minnesota conservatism, as the Twin Cities media’s sole source of honesty!
(All times Central)
So tune in to all four hours of the Northern Alliance Radio Network, the Twin Cities’ media’s sole guardians of honest news. You have so many options:
Joe Doakes notes the MNGOP’s big problem. I’ll add emphasis:
The DFL Governor and DFL Legislators have cut a deal to give more money to children and unions and have it all done by Tuesday. If only those pesky Republicans would agree.
Which they won’t of course, since this is the same pie-in-the-sky nonsense the DFL has been spouting all along, when not devoting the session to social issues such as gun control, gay marriage and bullying in schools.
And when Republicans don’t blindly sign on to the DFL program, why then the shut-down and special session and laying-off-of-cops will all be Republicans fault. Because Democrats had it all worked out, you see, and the Republicans ruined it.
We need better PR people, so WE can get ahead of the news cycle, for once.
I wonder if the MNGOP and the caucuses will ever figure that out. The way they’re doing it just isn’t working.
Senator Dave Osmek (R, SD33) emailed (with emphasis added):
You will note some GOP opposition to[this past week's] Latz gun bill. While I asked some pointed questions in debate of the bill, I came to the same conclusion as many GOP senators: Even though it’s a bill we can support, we do not feel any need for a gun bill this year, particularly in light of the fact that we do NOT have even ONE omnibus budget bill to keep the State running. We need priorities, not distractions.
The bill didn’t pass. And we still have no actual budget.
Just a bunch of crib notes the DFL is claiming are close enough for government work.