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Karen Sandness

Minneapolis, MN
Commenter for
6 years 23 weeks

Recent Comments

Posted on 07/23/14 at 10:12 am in response to Mike McFadden open to raising the age for Medicare benefits

Mike McFadden needs to learn basic arithmetic. The PROBLEM with Medicare is that it treats only the oldest Americans. For the average person, health problems increase with age, so the average 75-year-old is not as healthy as the average 65-year-old. Raising the age of eligibility will only increase the expense, since younger (therefore healthier) people will not be paying premiums.

The age of eligibility should instead be lowered so that younger, healthier people (perhaps the over-...

Posted on 07/23/14 at 03:58 pm in response to MPS school-board races: All the usual dynamics are missing

almost everyone makes the same bland public statements. "I believe in a quality education for all our children," etc. etc. Well, yes, who would get up and say, "I want the children of Minneapolis to be ignorant" or "I don't care if some children fall through the cracks"?

Who is ready to talk honestly and a bit radically about the ways in which business as usual is working and not working?

Who has honestly considered and is willing to talk about the way poverty affects...

the military-industrial complex is a hypocrite.

The Department of "Defense" is only part of the story. Homeland Security, The Department of Energy, and Veterans Affairs are all part of the equation, as is the money borrowed to fight the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and the sweetheart deals that gave away no-bid contracts worth billions of dollars to supply (or fail to supply) the troops in those wars.

Those kinds of self-styled "deficit hawks" need to come clean and admit that...

Posted on 07/22/14 at 07:58 pm in response to Considering Thomas Piketty, inequality and family fragmentation

1. The "no man in the house" rule for welfare recipients, enacted in the early 1960s at the behest of social conservatives who couldn't stand the idea of an able-bodied man receiving assistance of any kind?

2. The War on Drugs, which has sent disproportionate numbers of low-income men, especially low-income men of color, to prison?

3. A popular culture (not generated by poor people but by affluent music and film and TV producers) that glorifies being mean and dumb and solving...

Posted on 07/21/14 at 04:44 pm in response to Dismissing the cost of doing business in Minnesota will be at our peril

Do government workers hide all their money under a mattress so that it is "lost to the economy," as some right-wingers like to claim?

Or do they spend their paychecks on groceries, home and garden supplies, clothes, car repairs, entertainment, and other private sector products and services, just like real people?

Posted on 07/22/14 at 08:04 pm in response to Poll: 68 percent of Republicans say Obama should be impeached

Many of the people who comment on the Strib's website are convinced that Obama won Minnesota because the DFL bused "illegal immigrants and welfare mothers" from precinct to precinct.

They are also convinced that both Franken and Dayton cheated their way into office, despite the fact that the recounts were observed and approved by both the DFL and the Republicans.

I suspect that the AM radio machine had a lot to do with egging that attitude on, because a lot of the commentators...

Posted on 07/12/14 at 09:28 am in response to Professional development by teachers, for teachers


1. Training sessions led by people who were themselves currently engaged in classroom teaching, especially if the sessions allowed time for practicing or creating materials for the techniques being presented.

2. Talking with other instructors about how they had handled difficult students or difficult topics or listening to their accounts of class sessions that had gone particularly well.

Everything else was pretty useless.

Posted on 07/04/14 at 08:27 am in response to Why don’t more Minneapolitans bike, walk, or take transit?

and we're way behind both countries when it comes to availability of transit.

One comment above refers to the inflexibility of bus schedules, but that would not be a problem in either Tokyo (where subways and surface commuter trains run every three to eight minutes) or Seoul (where buses seem to come in a constant stream, so much so that they appear to create traffic problems).

We can't duplicate the transit systems of those much larger cities, both of which sprawl like Los...

Posted on 07/04/14 at 01:44 pm in response to 'Can I Eat This?' app from CDC helps travelers avoid stomach bugs

In China, Cuba, and Korea, local people do not drink unboiled tap water. If they avoid the tap water, I'm not going to drink it.

In China, people told us, "When I go to the street markets, I bring my own bowl and chopsticks, because the vendors don't always wash dishes carefully." Not having my own set of dishes on the trip, I avoided the street markets.

If the local people tell you to avoid something, it's best to avoid it, although it's not always true that you can eat...

Posted on 06/27/14 at 12:28 am in response to Finally, Mike McFadden offers details on his health-care views

is that the insurance companies do not pay what the doctors bill. Say a doctor needs to charge $1000 for a given procedure in order to break even on supplies, pay for assistants, etc.. However, this doctor is on the preferred provider list of three different insurance companies, each of which pays no more than a certain percentage of "customary charges"--and they're all different.

In order to get that $1000 from an insurance company that pays "35% of customary charges," the doctor...