Archive for the ‘News’ Category

A great reporter remembered.

I didn’t know Darcy Pohland. I only know how she touched the hearts while tapping the minds of countless Minnesotans.

Jason DeRusha writes a touching remembrance DeBlog: Remembering Darcy

She had the biggest smile and the loudest laugh of anyone I’ve ever met. Darcy Pohland died in her sleep Thursday night into Friday morning, and I can’t imagine our newsroom, and my life without her. I, like all of my coworkers, have spent the past hour or so in tears. It’s painful when you lose a friend or a relative, but it’s just devastating to lose someone like Darcy.

Most of us forgot how remarkable Darcy was, because she was just our friend, our coworker. (Ugh, I have to keep changing “is” to “was” while I write this.) But Darcy was the only television news reporter in the country working every single day in a wheelchair. Darcy rolled through the cold, the snow, the rain, the wind. She covered the construction projects, the murders, the fires, and the inspirational. She filled in for me yesterday, her last story was a Good Question on why jingles are so catchy. She did it all, and she did it in a wheelchair.

Read the entire post. Read it again. I didn’t know Darcy, but I know if more of use lived with Darcy’s passion and zest for life the world would be a better place. Darcy will be missed.

Will name children Google for fiber reports Duluth woos Google, limelight, with offer of first-born naming rights

Leaders of the Duluth initiative are not taking this lying down and have posted a video response on YouTube (a Google product) which decrees all first-born males shall be named “Google Fiber” and first-born females “Googlette Fiber”


Show your support at

VIA Tom Elko

Talking Minnesotan – 02-26-10

Image “Third Thursday: Foot in the Door 4 Premiere” Uploaded on February 19, 2010
by Minneapolis Institute of Arts
(Photos: Lacey Criswell and Kimberlee Whaley)
Find artwork on the FITD4 website

Check out the Best Shoes in the Door Gallery here

Learn about upcoming Third Thursday events.

Join the Third Thursday Group Pool and upload your own images from the event.

Well I missed another Third Thursday event, but I really want to go. The wife has decided she won’t be able to make the next couple, so I need a date or three. Want to go to the next one?

This week the talk has been all Prince all the time. His Purpleness has released a new song “Cause and Affect” and Andrea Swensson is not impressed.

People, we have a fake applause situation. When one of our friends was listening to “Cause and Effect” for the first time, he remarked that it sounded like the background noise on the video game Rock Band. We giggled, and then became very, very sad. Honestly. Is there anything more depressing than the image of the Purple One at Paisley Park, wielding a plastic guitar with multi-colored buttons and playing with a backing band of cartoons?


Check out Toki Wright talk about BlackMale, an 8 song digital EP of all brand new music. “Seeing that it is Black History month it seemed like a fitting to release this interpretation of African-American manhood”

Although Mn has plenty of Minnesotans in the Olympics people still can’t seem to get enough Brett Favre talk.

Most sports fans are getting into baseball mode and What ‘choo talking about, Willis? has some things to say with Twinsanity

While MPR’s Laura McCallum takes on the more serious discussion of homelessness in Mn with A business plan to end long-term homelessness Ever notice how politicians say they are going to end homelessness, but then set the date way off in the future all the while defunding programs for the homeless?

Yeah, I’m sure that will work.

There’s been a lot of law talk this week and right in the midst of it all Sheila Regan fights the law and well, somehow actually wins. TCDP’s Sheila Regan gets court records opened

Secret court proceedings will see the light of day, according to an Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling on TC Daily Planet reporter Sheila Regan’s motion to open the records of contempt proceedings against Carrie Feldman. The appeals court allowed further government delay in opening the records, drawing a sharp dissent from Judge Bye, one of the three-judge panel hearing the case:

Congratulations Sis, but be careful, that’s not how the song goes.

Hey look that pretty boy Andrew Zimmern is going to be on the Tyra show. Fierce.

Speaking of MSPMAG Man-about-Town Steve Marsh (who still owes me 20 bucks and drinks, fucking hippy.) has two videos worth checking this week.

In this one he gets hammered and talks about the monster situation he created with Michelle Bachmann and in this one he interviews author Wells Tower at Il Gatto

HEY YOU!!! Don’t forget to vote in the Pepsi Refresh contest, there are some good local entries.

You know what? It’s Friday, let’s close it out with Eyedea & Abilities – Smile



Become a zombie, go to jail, get a lawyer, sue.

Minneapolis Zombie Pub Crawl Uploaded on October 11, 2009 by chris-williams

Strib reports Appeals court gives new life to local ‘zombie’ suit

The U.S. Court of Appeals on Wednesday released a ruling in favor of a group of zombies who say they were wrongfully arrested while protesting consumerism during the 2006 Aquatennial. The ruling reanimates the group’s federal lawsuit against the city of Minneapolis and its police, seeking damages of at least $50,000 for each person arrested.

A three-judge panel of the court ruled 2-1 that police lacked probable cause to arrest the group — seven people wearing white powder, fake blood and black around their eyes and shuffling around like zombies — for disorderly conduct. Police do not have immunity from claims against them for making the arrest, the court ruled.

The appeals court did side with the city on two other points — affirming the lower court’s dismissal of the zombies’ claims of false imprisonment and First Amendment retaliation.

I have a hard time seeing how the zombies were wrongfully arrested and yet False Imprisonment and First Amendment retaliation do not apply. I guess that’s why I’ll never be a judge. I have to admit I was a little disappointed that a zombie suit wasn’t a type of clothing to be worn at a zombie office or at a zombie wedding.

In case you were wondering both lawyers see this as a win of sorts. The Zombies’ lawyer says the court decided correctly, while the City’s lawyer says they won 2 of 3 charges.

“A Minneapolis police spokesman declined to comment”



Should police obey the law?

In this post at the Pioneer press Ruben Rosario: Cops’ seat-belt sting did the job. But was it right? Ruben talks about a police string to catch motorists not using a seatbealt.

The FBI had Donnie Brasco, the undercover agent who infiltrated the mob. Maplewood police have “Homeless Harry” — my moniker for the undercover cop who last weekend bagged a completely different kind of outlaw. Let me explain.

Blake Elfstrom, 22, of Maplewood, was driving his girlfriend home late Sunday morning. He was the fourth car at a stop sign before turning onto westbound Minnesota 36 from northbound McKnight Road in North St. Paul.

That was when he spotted a shabbily dressed, middle-aged man wearing glasses that seemed too big for his face. The man, who turned out to be Maplewood cop Paul Bartz, was holding up a sign — “Will work for food” — as he approached and looked inside the line of waiting vehicles.

Elfstrom was pondering whether to roll down his window when he saw the cars moving ahead of him. He entered the on-ramp, only to be waved to the side of the road moments later by one of several uniformed cops standing near a line of patrol cars.

He asked the cop why he was being pulled over. The officer told him his girlfriend was in violation of a 9-month-old law that gives Minnesota law enforcement the authority to pull over drivers and occupants for not wearing seat belts.

“How in the world did you know?” Elfstrom asked the ticketing officer.

“That homeless guy back there? He’s an officer,” the cop replied.

“I saw about 10 other cars pulled over as he wrote out the (summons),” said Elfstrom

Ruben then goes on to delve into the right/wrongs of police posing as the homeless for a sting and quotes officers that are both for and against the practice.

Though, the bit that caught my eye is this

I was left wondering whether the cops violated one state law in order to enforce another. According to Subdivision 2 of Minnesota Statute 169.22, “no person shall stand on a roadway for the purpose of soliciting employment, business, or contributions from the occupant of any vehicle.”

It’s clear from the article that the police did in fact solicit and accept money while working on the sting. (Almost $100! which they donated)

I think we’ve all seen police breaking laws that apply to other drivers: speeding, flipping on lights to go through a red and then immediately turning them off, distracted driving, etc.

I know it’s a loaded question, but does anyone think it’s ok for the police to break while enforcing the law?
Should all these seatbeat tickets be tossed out of court on a technicality?



The greatest MEME ever! (and other hyperbole)

It turns out Miss me yet? is becoming something of an Internet Sensation MEME. And I don’t use Internet Sensation lightly, this thing is viral huge. Huger than anything you’ve ever done on the web. Huuuuuuuuuuuugeee!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Citypages has Pres. Bush’s ‘Miss Me Yet?’ billboard: the alternate slogans and Tildology can’t resist answering the question with Since you asked.

Here are my feeble attempts using the highly advanced Microsoft Paint.

How tough is tough enough?

Depending on who you ask Minnesota either has a drinking and driving problem or the laws have gotten too strict. I’ve heard numbers cited that 1 in 8 Minnesotans (524,000 drivers) have a DWI and there are about 20,000 new first time offenders every year.


Recently Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s has been proposing a series of stiffer laws and amongst those laws affected would be DWI/DUI.

The editors at the Strib have put together this little gem Editorial: Toughen DWI laws and save lives.

What I wonder is where is the point of diminishing returns, I think it’s clear that making tougher laws does not always result in less crime.

There are actually a few decent comments on the Strib story, but this one stands out

Let’s stop kidding ourselves
When I started in law enforcement 25 years ago it took me about 20 minutes to read the implied consent, obtain a test and write a ticket for DUI. When I ended my career I needed a flow chart to figure out what degree of DUI that was to be charged and 3 hours to fill out the required paperwork. We engage in this on going debate because enough citizens in our state refuse to acknowledge that it is not OK to drive when you have a snootful and a whole industry that has grown up to enable or punish this small group. Interlock’s will not stop the chronic offender. The chronic drunks desire to drive drunk will be readily served by a new industry who’s sole efforts will be to defeat the purpose of the interlock.
posted by montaguezx

Are the current laws sufficient? Too strict? I don’t know, but I get the feeling making tougher laws won’t do much to make the streets safer.



Talking Minnesotan – 02-05-10

Image Uploaded on January 27, 2010
by Individual_romance
There’s been plenty of talk in Minnesota this week. Most of it about bacon and eggs, some of it about beer, and occasionally someone has brought up the topic of the weather. Typically, we kill that person with kindness while secretly thinking thoughts of the Caribbean. Since it’s Superbowl weekend I’ll open it all up with some football talk.

Bob Collins has The case for a Vikings stadium discussion

The Minnesota Legislature begins its 2010 session today (MPR’s Midday is originating its entire show from the Capitol today) and the chief topic is how to to close the state’s budget deficit.

But the slightly smaller gorilla in the room is a stadium for the Minnesota Vikings. Still, it has no significant chance of coming up for discussion this year.

Gov. Pawlenty tried to put the discussion in play yesterday during his appearance on MPR’s Midday when he offered several possible ways to raise some revenue for the Vikings, whose lease at the Metrodome expires at the end of next season.

Sooner or later, the issue has to come up for discussion. The question is: Should it be sooner? Or later?

I like the first comment by BSimon

You’re absolutely half-right, Bob. I say half right because the necessary discussion isn’t just about a hypothetical Vikings stadium, but the entire list of requests for state funding. What really needs to happen is a prioritization process, that includes analysis of the payback we’ll get from any given expenditure. For instance, how much do we spend on schools & what’s the return? Are we properly educating our future workforce such that they’ll be productive members of society, contributing back to MN? What about law enforcement – is the investment in law enforcement, the courts & prison system the best way to provide security & safety to the populace? Or can we achieve the same or better results by spending differently? So, back to the Vikings stadium. Supporters claim there’s an ROI, through taxing players’ salaries, or an intangible benefit of building a sort of community. Ok, how do we quantify that & prioritize it against other obligations? Should we build a stadium or hire more public defenders & fix some bridges? How about building a ditch around Moorehead? If we consider a new dedicated source of funding, like racinos, why would that revenue be earmared for a stadium, rather than addressing the enormous budget shortfall?

So, yes, lets discuss it. What are our priorities & how much are we willing to pay for them? In bang for the buck, a stadium falls a bit on the priority list, in comparison to ensuring our state’s future standard of living remains high.

Check out my buddy Marsh getting hammered

Mpls.St.Paul Magazine’s Steve Marsh and reporter Brian Lambert imbibe the latest cocktail creations by La Belle Vie’s star bartender Johnny Michaels while chatting about the politics of Michele Bachmann, Brian’s new radio show Brian and Sheletta on FM 107.1, and the death of happy hour at the state capital.
, Brian’s new radio show Brian and Sheletta on FM 107.1, and the death of happy hour at the state capital.

Remember when I talked about the Art Shanty Black Bania? Citypages points us to this video of Spoken word artist Paul Dickenson.

bigboxcar confirms: Yeah, Cheeseheads are still bitter.


Minnesotan Jeff Severns Guntzel says what we’ve got here is a failure to communicate on War and makes a great video.

I ravaged the Utne Reader library looking for covers from the alternative press that helped to tell the complex and terrible story of our war in Iraq. Utne Reader librarian Danielle Maestretti and art director Stephanie Glaros helped me. Here’s what we came up with:

Video: The Iraq War as Told Through Magazine Covers

Great work.
Fellow Cloquet escapee and writer CHRIS RIEMENSCHNEIDER writes a fascinating story about Wille Murphy

Did you see that guy’s hair?

Speaking of hair Jason Derusha says
“The Good Question intern @allisonjanney has been researching hair. Not mine, obviously.”

Check it

Enough about hair, let’s close it out with the nicely waxed Brother Ali

Mom, get out!

I love local police blotter news. Police blotter is probably my favorite section in my belove East Side Review

It can be funny at times, but mainly it’s a good way to tell if there is a rash of problems creeping into my neighborhood. I find it useful to track the assaults, stolen vehicles, and break ins and the neighborhoods in which they are occuring.

For the amusement aspect of blotter, typically the smaller the paper the better, but every now and the big papers have something funny.

The Strib prints this one from Apple Valley

DEC. 28

Unwanted visitor. An officer received a complaint from a woman who said her mother had arrived for Christmas and was now refusing to leave

I think we’ve all been there.

Blotter, love it or leave it?


Ramsey County is watching you.

Kare 11 reports

Saint Paul, MN – Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher has created a network of wireless remote control surveillance cameras, the first of it’s kind in the nation. And the public will eventually have opportunities to monitor the new electronic snooping devices.

“We’re creating a system that allows the average citizen to be our eyes and ears,” Sheriff Fletcher I ask myself,Has law enforcement demonstrated that they will use technology in a legal manner

told reporters Tuesday, as he stood before a wall full of flat screen TV monitors.

The devices transmit video back to headquarters via cell phones. That video can then be streamed over the Internet to computers, iPhones and Google Droids.

In one breath Fletcher says

This is to view public spaces,” “Places that a normal person could actually view it they were actually there. It’s not like we’re going to be peering through your windows.”

and in the next he says

He said no citizen will be intentionally tracked with the “web cop” system unless there’s already compelling evidence of criminal behavior or intent

What exactly is compelling evidence of criminal behavior or intent?

I’m guessing it’s somewhere along the lines of “If you’re a citizen, you’re a criminal” I ask myself if law enforcement has shown that it can use technology or new policy for their intended purpose the answer is no.
In my opinion this is a giant policy fail for the county and another step towards Total-Police-Domination™

Maybe you disagree.


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