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Court hands Hubbard Broadcasting a win over DirecTV

Beating DirecTV isn’t a common occurrence. Curtis Gilbert of MPR reports, “A federal court has sided with St. Paul-based Hubbard Broadcasting in a legal dispute with DirecTV. The ruling will keep two Hubbard-owned channels — Ovation and REELZChannel — coming to DirecTV customers. The channels have only been around since 2006. But the judge's order was based on a contract the companies signed 16 years ago, when a Hubbard subsidiary merged with DirecTV. … The satellite provider argued the 16-year-old agreement was never intended to last for ‘generations.’ But the court disagreed.” Apparently a “generation” to a media giant is a whole lot shorter than it is to the rest of us.

Are you surprised? Paul Levy of the Strib writes, “Reid Sagehorn, the former Rogers High School student whose apparently sarcastic two-word Internet posting resulted in a seven-week suspension and an ensuing furor in the Elk River School District, on Tuesday filed a federal lawsuit against the Rogers police chief and Elk River superintendent. In addition to naming Superintendent Mark Bezek and Police Chief Jeff Beahen, Sagehorn is suing Rogers High Principal Roman Pierskalla, Assistant Superintendent Jana Henne-Burr and police liaison Stephen Sarazin.”

So let’s hope they don’t run out in California. The AP says, “The long, cool spring is expected to delay Minnesota's strawberry season by up to two weeks this year. However, the state Agriculture Department says Minnesota strawberry producers are forecasting a large, healthy crop. Some pick-your-own and pre-picked strawberry farms in southern Minnesota and the metro area expect to open around Friday, with peak picking around the Fourth of July weekend.”

After tallying up the rain-driven mayhem from International Falls to Pipestone, Paul Walsh of the Strib adds, “Thunderstorms will continue to pop up across the state this week between brief spells of sunshine, the National Weather Service said. Southern counties along the Iowa border are expected to get the heaviest rainfall. The Twin Cities area already has tallied 20.2 inches of rain and other precipitation since the start of 2014, nearly double normal for this time of year, making it the third-wettest year on record. That has meant record-high lake levels, an overflowing Minnehaha Creek and fast-moving rivers that have proved to be lethal.”

At MPR, Paul Huttner writes, “There’s simply no margin for error now across a good chunk of Minnesota. With so many rivers and lakes overflowing, farm fields under water, basements at risk of inundation there’s simply no where else for additional water to go without causing major problems. … Storm coverage may be a little more spotty today and early Wednesday. By Wednesday night and Thursday, the next low rides in, and that may trigger more widespread thunderstorms coverage with both heavy rain and severe potential.”

The DFL has more mothers’ milk than the GOP. Rachel Stassen-Berger of the Strib reports, “DFL Party groups have raised more, spent more and have more cash left on hand compared to Republican Party groups, according to the latest campaign finance reports. According to the pre-election reports, the state Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party and its legislative committee arms have raised almost $2.4 million. By comparison, the Republican Party and its legislative affiliates have raised $885,000.”

Related … from Allison Sherry of the Strib, “The National Republican Congressional Committee will spend $3.2 million on Minneapolis television this fall on behalf of Stewart Mills and Torrey Westrom, who are trying to unseat Democratic incumbent Reps. Rick Nolan and Collin Peterson, respectively. Republican officials announced the ad reservations [today].”

If you’re intrigued by Medtronic’s tax schemes, a commentary in the New York Times today is worth reading. Jacques Leslie writes, “According to Mr. Zucman’s calculations, 20 percent of all corporate profits in the United States are shifted offshore, and tax avoidance deprives the government of a third of corporate tax revenues. Corporate tax avoidance has become so widespread that from the late 1980s until now, the effective corporate tax rate in the United States has dropped from 30 percent to 15 percent, Mr. [Gabriel] Zucman found, even though the tax rate hasn’t changed.”

At KMSP-TV Jeff Ballion reports, “After a series of reports from the Fox 9 Investigators, Minnesota's legislative auditor will turn his eye to review 10 years of drug trials conducted by the University of Minnesota's Department of Psychiatry. … [Legislative auditor Jim] Nobles told FOX 9 News he will launch an investigation that looks at the past decade of drug trials — including the case of Dan Markingson, a research subject who died trying to decapitate himself.”

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Comments (7)

The DFL has more mothers’ milk than the GOP

And what's outrageous is much of that DFL "mothers' milk" comes from public employee unions, meaning all taxpayers contribute to DFL coffers whether they agree with their nonsensical policies or not, while the GOP gets their contributions from those who agree with them.

Silly

If a small business contracts with the state and the owner contributes to the Republican Party, am I involuntarily contributing to GOP coffers even though I disagree with their nonsensical policies?

Please provide published figures...

...to substantiate the claim that "much of" the DFL contributions comes from public employee unions.

I've not seen any summary numbers on this source of funds. I'd actually like to know what "much of" means, because it seems a little vague & could mean many different things.

Unions are people too!

Now that corporations are people, I see no problem with unions contributing as they see fit. Members have no more say in it that share holders or employees in a corporation do.

It is actually very difficult to buy any product in this country and not, in some way, be funneling money to a corporation that is the "mother's milk" of the GOP. Every purchase at Walmart, Target, Menards, Fleet Farm, Home Depot or every single drop of gas you put in your car.

What's good for the goose...

Not quite

Dues are usually mandatory for union members, but contributions to political action committees are voluntary, by Federal law. Stewards spend a lot of their time begging members to contribute. In any case, the money comes out of their pay, not out of public purses.

Why is Sauce for the Goose Not Sauce for the Gander?

I keep hearing all the caviling about Unions and how they are politically active and that's a problem. This is usually put in contrast to corporate political activity, which is fine because "Corporations Are People," as upheld by the US Supreme Court. Well, I've been a Union Member, and now I own my own business. Why is it OK for me to have the benefits of incorporation, including my end of collective bargaining, tax advantages, enhanced deductions, limited liability above all; but for some reason it's not OK for employees, and especially government employees, to have the same basic rights? As if a unit of government is not in many ways the ultimate corporation?
Personally, I believe corporate status should either be abolished, or should be granted by the people of the United States on a time-limited basis, with renewal contingent on positive proof of benefit to the public. Otherwise corporate status and protection should be revoked. They're just people, after all, right? Why let them, just f'rinstance, sell defective automobiles that kill people and then claim incompetence and ignorance as valid defenses and excuses from responsibility? If they're people, they should be in prison, as you or I would be if we behaved in this monstrous fashion.
And if one side of the employer/employee arrangement can bargain collectively and make campaign contributions from shared corporate funds, so can both. Though I would prefer neither, of course.

Medtronic’s tax schemes

I suppose it would be Communist to outlaw such blatant tax-avoidance schemes by corporations? Or to hold corporations to the same rules and regulations as apply to individuals?

The complete lack of political impetus to plug this gaping loophole puts the lie to arguments that "Corporations Are People." No, they're not. People have to pay taxes, or go to jail. And these days, only Communists propose enforcing the laws as they should apply to corporations; the answer is to change the laws to further exempt corporate interests. Which sort of makes sense as our nation becomes more openly Fascist. Fascism having been defined by it's modern paragon, Benito Mussolini, as the merger of Corporate and State Power.

Shocking to say the US is a Fascist country? Shouldn't be. Only 15 years it was considered uncouth to say the US was an Empire. By 2004 it was openly stated and accepted as a received wisdom.