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Jon Erik Kingstad

Afton, MN
Commenter for
4 years 15 weeks

Recent Comments

Our society values people based on their earning capacity and their wealth. Somehow it's OK for the CEO's of the largest banks, health insurance companies and corporations to get multimillion dollar salaries and bonuses voted by their buddies on the corporate boards, but it's wrong for teachers to use tough bargaining methods to earn a livable salary.

We want our children to receive a good education. But for the vast majority of people in our country, education is not an end in...

is the reason for right to work laws in the first place. Let me spell it out for you.

Right to work laws are to make it harder- a lot harder - to organize and maintain a union. Unions exist to enable workers to bargain collectively for higher wages and better conditions of employment. So called "right to work" is built on the fantasy that individual employees can enjoy the same wages and benefits without having to belong to or contribute to that union.

Corporations like GM...

Right to work laws are different than employment at will. At will employment is simply the default common law in every state of the US that says in the absence of a contract, an employee is hired "at will." Many employers now only hire temporary employees to avoid having to pay benefits like health insurance and others hire only "independent contractors" who are often employees with no rights or pay.

Of course, without strong laws guaranteeing collective bargaining, the right to...

"price" with "cost." People buy cars for a certain price which it "costs" them; they don't ay for the wages or pensions that "cost" the manufacturer to produce them. There's no reason to believe that GM or any car manufacturer's prices are higher because of high wages, union or otherwise. The auto industry in this country was founded on Henry Ford's paying the highest wages in the country for manufacturing so his workers could afford to buy the cars they made. I fail to see how it is the...

Posted on 01/23/14 at 08:40 pm in response to MNsure leaders face big decisions, bleak projections

I wonder if the people who set up MNSure were aware that something that I would describe as an "exchange" already existed in Minnesota several years before this program was even conceived. It's called "e-health" and basically matches an individual or family with a private health insurance plan that meets their profile and needs. Now e-health does not decide whether or not to accept your application. Nor does it act as an intermediary in premium payments.The insurer can reject you or accept...

Posted on 01/21/14 at 05:10 pm in response to Trendy Minneapolitans conflicted over cars

is no laughing matter for the individuals whose mugshots get posted. Anyone who has ever tried to perform a background check on someone knows that you can't even get a telephone number or address these days without paying for it. Criminal and arrest background checks cost even more.

Mugshots are different. With these, it's the subject who must pay, even if they're cleared of any wrongdoing. The "entrepreneurs" which run these mugshot operations do not care about public information....

Posted on 01/20/14 at 08:56 pm in response to Target offers an exciting opportunity to test and learn

but guests are suffered only as long as they follow the host's rules and do as they're told.

Posted on 01/18/14 at 11:42 am in response to Members of Congress still want their shot at surveillance reform

is having elected officials like Michele Bachmann and James Inhofe to name but a few who not only don't "get it" when it comes to serious public issues but really don't want to "get it" because it feeds the vanity of their equally uninformed supporters. Accusing the President of proposing something like limitations on the FISA court which itself has ruled that the secret branches of government are out of control in surveilling us only reveals how unintelligent and misinformed she is. Again,...

Posted on 01/14/14 at 05:07 pm in response to U.N. doesn’t work, and a U of M professor has a plan to fix it

Excellent point by Mr. Schoch. I would maintain that the concept of "sovereignty" in today's world dominated by multinational corporations is all but completely obsolete. Mr. Schoch's comment about Citizen's United is right on target in that regard. Unfortunately, the same stranglehold which multinational corporations have on our "sovereign governments" through the dubious extension of constitutional protections to them also stands as an obstacle to the sort of reforms to the UN suggested by...

Posted on 01/10/14 at 04:32 pm in response to Maybe the War on Poverty was the wrong metaphor

I agree with Judge Burke that the "War on Poverty" may have been an apt metaphor at the time but it may have outlived its usefulness. But the "War on Poverty" was not the only one. President Johnson also initiated his "Great Society" programs later in 1964 which also included programs that sought to lift people out of poverty.

One of these was the Legal Services Corporation which in the 1970's became very effective in challenging laws, rules and policies which discriminated against...