Oh, boy. Someone alert the downtown traffic cops. ESPN is saying Randy Moss is coming back to town … today. Another piece says: “The Vikings and the Patriots have agreed to a blockbuster trade that will send the Pro Bowl wide receiver back to Minnesota for the Vikings’ 2011 third-round pick on Wednesday, an NFL source told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter. FoxSports.com first reported the trade talks. When the trade is completed, the Patriots will have two picks in each of the first four rounds of the 2011 draft — their own picks and a first-round pick from Oakland, a second-round pick from Carolina, the third-round pick from Minnesota and a fourth-rounder from Denver.”
FoxSports’ Jay Glazer says its a done deal. “As FOXSports first reported yesterday, the Randy Moss to Minnesota deal has now come to fruition. Twelve hours after reporting the deal was on the verge of happening, it has now been completed for a third-round pick, sources tell FOXSports.com.” Just when the Twins thought they’d get some ink …
I really have to check all those notes I made in Sister Aloysius’ fourth-grade catechism class. Because I missed the part where the priest can refuse to give a church-goer communion because he doesn’t like what he or she is wearing. The Strib’s Paul Walsh covers the latest in Archbishop John Nienstedt’s crusade against homosexual infidels: “The archdiocese has for years denied communion to members of the Rainbow Sash Movement, who wear the colors to mass in protest of the church’s stance in opposition to homosexuality. ‘We don’t permit that at the communion rail,’ Archdiocese spokesman Dennis McGrath said Monday. ‘We have told them for years you cannot receive communion if you wear the rainbow sash, because it’s a political statement, a sign of protest. Going to the communion rail is the most sacred part of our faith, the Eucharist. We don’t allow anybody to make political statements or any kind of protest.’ ” Just as no church in 21st-century America would ever engage in political activity.
On dotCommonweal, the blog for Commonweal magazine’s writers and editors, Molly Wilson O’Reilly ruminates on just what the good archbishop is saying when he asserts that a “ruling elite” is behind this gay marriage business: “When you hear a bishop using ‘elite’ as a pejorative, you know it’s time to question some premises. And on cue, Slate’s Jacob Weisberg has an article examining what ‘elitist’ means in politics today. There are a number of shifting definitions, depending on who’s talking and whom they’re hoping to insult. But in general it’s an empty epithet, a term of ad hominem resentment. Can one be a liberal and not be ‘elitist’? Can one be elite if one is not liberal? If the answer is no — as it seems to be in much right-wing discourse — then criticizing someone or some policy as ‘elitist’ is nothing but a tautology.” But how much do we like the sound of a Roman Catholic archbishop criticizing nameless others for being part of a “ruling elite”?
I tell you what drives me crazy. Noisy potato chip bags. It’s a major crisis. Which is why Frito-Lay is dumping a biodegradable Cargill product because the bags made out of it make … too much noise. The AP story says: “The bags were launched in April 2009 with a big marketing effort to play up their compostability because they’re made from plants and not petroleum-based plastic.
But that which makes them compostable also makes them loud. The bags have a different molecular structure from the original packaging, and they’re stiffer. So people complained about the noise. Groups on Facebook abound with names such as “I wanted SunChips but my roommate was sleeping …” The bag was produced by NatureWorks, a unit of Wayzata-based agribusiness Cargill. Under the trade name Ingeo, NatureWorks has promoted plant-based plastics as a green substitution for petroleum-based materials.” In other words, to hell with “green,” Americans want “quiet.”
An Inver Grove Heights guy is in the running for “Dad of the Year” after leaving his 4-year-old son in a mini-van while he watched a movie … then tried to steal a different car to make his escape. The PiPress’ Marciella Miranda writes: “At about 8:45 p.m. Friday, police responded to a call about the child being left unattended in a white mini-van, parked directly in front of the theater in a fire lane, the complaint said. The child told police that his dad went in the theater to watch a movie ‘a long time ago’ and his dad said to stay in the car, the complaint said.” No word if Dad was watching “Despicable Me.”
Scott Johnson of Power Line likes what he’s seeing in the polls out of the 8th District, where he says Jim Oberstar actually has a race (45 percen to 42 percent) on his hands. But is Dick Morris the GOP’s ultimate authority on congressional campaign strategy? Writes Johnson: “Morris adds that in assessing the meaning of the polls, analysts are underestimating the ability of Republican challengers to defeat Democratic incumbents who are under 50 percent of the vote because the undecided vote usually breaks to the challenger. Morris refers to Republican insurgents with limited name recognition who are running behind their incumbent Democratic opponents because voters don’t know who they are. Morris argues that these Republican candidates running against Democratic incumbents polling under 50 percent can win their races. The [Chip] Cravaack campaign appears to be a case in point.”
Yeah, steady 70 percent returns on investment should make a savvy money manager a little curious about what’s really going on. Paul Walsh has another story in this morning’s Strib, this one on a whopping $5.1 billion “clawback” Tom Petters bankruptcy trustee wants back from a Minnetonka hedge fund. “Petters bankruptcy trustee Doug Kelley is seeking at least $105 million in false profits from Arrowhead Capital Partners and affiliate groups as well as $5.1 billion in principal and interest that was transferred to them for more than a decade. The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court, is the latest and largest suit authorized by Kelley to claw back profits paid to certain investors at the expense of other investors who were unaware of the fraud.” He adds, “According to the lawsuit, ‘Defendants knew or should have known that they were benefiting from fraudulent activity, or at a minimum, failed to exercise reasonable due diligence with respect to Petters.’ ” It’s either that or they were monumentally stupid. Which do you think they’d prefer to cop to?
John Welbes’ PiPress story includes the information that “Lawsuits against more than 200 net winners in the Petters scheme are expected to be filed by early next week, when the statute of limitations for such suits expires. Targets include investors, former employees and charities that received more cash from Petters than they invested.”
Two hundred feet of 169 outside St. Peter will cost $250,000 to repair. An MPR story says: “Jim Swanson of the Minnesota Department of Transportation says the damage was revealed when the Minnesota River receded. He says some parts of the road washed away and the gap is 6 feet deep. The department has received approval to have a contractor fix it immediately and work should be done in a week.”
Michele Bachmann’s opponent, Tarryl Clark, has released on online ad suggesting … (gasp) … profanity! The Washington Post’s “44” political blog writes: “The ad was posted to YouTube Monday and has a relatively innocent beginning. It accuses Bachmann of working on behalf of special interests. ‘No one does more on behalf of special interests than Michele Bachmann,’ says the announcer. But at the end, the announcer says, ‘Michele Bachmann. Not doing [bleep] for the people of the sixth district.’ The expletive is entirely implied, and Politico reports that the Clark campaign insists that the ad not be described as using an expletive.” Goodness!
Heating bills this season should be about the same as last winter, says a piece by Leslie Brooks Suzukamo in the PiPress: “For customers of Minneapolis-based Xcel Energy, that means a total average bill of $545 for the five-month heating season from November through March, spokesman Tom Hoen said. CenterPoint customers paid about $570 November through March, and that shouldn’t change if natural gas prices stay relatively low and Minnesota has an average winter, according to utility spokeswoman Becca Virden. ‘Supply is up, storage is up, and there’s nothing hurting production in the Gulf at this point,’ Xcel spokesman Tom Hoen said.”