Little Falls teens were allegedly ‘finished off’ point-blank

Shades of Bernhard Goetz … .  Curt Brown of the Strib reports, “[Homeowner Byron Smith] heard glass breaking around noon Thursday while he was in the basement. It was the latest of several break-ins that he’s experienced. [Nicholas] Brady started coming down the stairs, and Smith shot him with a rifle by the time he saw the intruder’s hips. Brady fell down the stairs and was looking up at Smith when the homeowner shot him in the face. ‘I want him dead,’ Smith explained to the investigator for the additional shot. … A few minutes later, Smith heard footsteps above him. As in Brady’s case, [Haile] Kifer too started down the stairs and was shot by Smith by the time he saw her hips, sending her tumbling down the stairs. Smith attempted to shoot her again, but his rifle jammed, prompting Kifer to laugh. Upset, Smith, pulled out a revolver he had on him and shot her ‘more times than I needed to’ in the chest, he said.” So we have two unarmed amateur burglars at noon on Thanksgiving day?

The beer flood continues rising without a crest in sight … . John Hageman of the Forum papers writes, “Small craft breweries have been on the rise in Minnesota in recent years, a wave of popularity that has recently reached the shores of Lake Bemidji. Bemidji Brewing Co. started selling its beer at Brigid’s Irish Pub in the last few weeks, a milestone that was years in the making. The brewery’s three members have seen what craft beer scenes in other states have to offer, and what Minnesota could look like in the future. ‘I think we’re going to continue to see more local breweries pop up,’ said Andrew Schmitt, director of Minnesota Beer Activists, a consumer advocacy group. ‘People want to be able to support their neighbors and local businesses and drink good beer at the same time.’ … Despite the recent momentum, Minnesota is not a national leader in the national craft beer scene. Minnesota is 26th in the nation in breweries per capita, with one for every 147,331 people, according to the Boulder, Colo.-based Brewers Association. Vermont, Oregon and Montana topped that list.”

At least one GOP legislator thinks the new DFL majority will ignore agricultural issues. Don Davis of the Forum papers says, “The Minnesota House agriculture committee chairman for the past two years is concerned Democrats are putting agriculture on the back burner as they take control of the chamber. Rep. Rod Hamilton, R-Mountain Lake, said agriculture and rural finance issues were discussed in their own committee for years. But when Democrats become the House majority on Jan. 8, those issues will be considered with environment and natural resources matters. … Democrats counter with their own argument: More than 80 percent of state funding will go through finance committees led by rural chairmen.”

Tax reform without “taxing the rich”? Tim Pugmire of MPR says, “A major overhaul of state tax policy could be in the works next year when the newly elected DFL Legislature arrives at the Capitol. Gov. Mark Dayton is expected to launch the discussion in January when he unveils his plan for making the tax system fairer and simpler. But Dayton’s long-promised income tax increase on top earners could be a tough sell, even with Democrats now in control of the House and Senate. … One Republican rejected the DFL tax plan even before it took shape. ‘Well, anytime someone says ‘tax fairness,’ that means increased taxes on everyone, and that’s exactly what the proposal will be,’ said GOP Rep. Greg Davids of Preston, who chaired the House Tax Committee the past two years.”

The Glean“Uh, where do you suppose these are from?” The AP reports, “The Minnesota National Guard has found a few small fragments of the moon’s surface in storage in a state building in St. Paul. The moon rocks came from the Apollo 11 moon landing in 1969, when astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to set foot on the moon. Some of the rocks they collected from the moon’s surface have since gone missing. Minnesota’s moon rocks came from President Nixon, who also presented a Minnesota state flag that was carried on the mission.”

The Strib’s Paul Walsh adds, “ ‘The Apollo 11 moon rocks were found amongst military artifacts in a storage area at the Veterans Service Building in St. Paul,’ said Army Maj. Blane R. Iffert, former state historian for the Minnesota National Guard. ‘When I searched the Internet to find additional information about the moon rocks, I knew we had to find a better means to display this artifact.’ 

I know I have a lot less paper around the house … . Adam Belz of the Strib writes, “Lumberjacks are the foot soldiers of the forest industries, and in recent years they’ve been pounded on two sides. Not only have more than a hundred U.S. paper mills shut down in little more than a decade, as demand for paper declines in the Western world, but the collapse of the American housing market eliminated demand for building products made from trees. As of July, the tree harvest in Minnesota had plummeted 40 percent in six years, mostly because of the departure of companies that make oriented strand board by fusing pieces of wood with glue under high pressure. … Loggers in Minnesota haven’t harvested less than 2.5 million cords of timber for 30 years, but this year they might.”

This is news to anyone who has walked the State Fairgrounds … . Helmut Schmidt of the Forum papers says, “Diabetes rates jumped across the United States between 1995 and 2010, according to recently released data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. But northern-tier states, including North Dakota and Minnesota, are still among those with the lowest prevalence of the disease – if only because residents are not caught in a ‘culture of obesity,’ a local expert said. In the Nov. 16 Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, the CDC reports that the average diabetes rate for the 50 states, District of Columbia and Puerto Rico leaped from 4.5 percent in 1995 to 8.2 percent in 2010. The average increases were highest in the South and Appalachia, with Alabama, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and West Virginia all 10 percent or more in 2010. Puerto Rico averaged 12.7 percent.”

And where did the humans sit? Paul Walsh (again) of the Strib reports, “Authorities in Minneapolis have uncovered a hoarding case involving a breed of dog known for its mammoth size, and now they are on a mission to find good homes for the animals. There were seven Great Danes living in less than ideal conditions at a home in Minneapolis, said city spokesman Matt Lindstrom. The city’s Animal Care and Control has placed two puppies and are handing over the other five — all adults — to a rescue organization starting Monday.”

You can also learn about all our free newsletter options.

Comments (4)

  1. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 11/26/2012 - 03:20 pm.

    Our Repubican Friends Have Left Out a Vital Step

    You see, you have to wait until the spaghetti is getting close to being cooked before any of it will stick to the wall when you throw it.

    Doing what our Republican friends are doing, just throwing handfulls of dry pasta at the wall before they even get put in the boiling water that is a legislative session, just means it all falls flat on the floor,…

    and by the time there’s anything getting close to done (and there will be a lot), the media and the general public will be so burned out on you desperately throwing anything you can get your hands on at the wall to see if you can’t get something (ANYTHING??!!) to stick,…

    that they will no longer be paying any attention to you.

    Of course you might fare better if the public believed that you were actually trying to make useful corrections and suggestions when you think your Democratic colleagues might have missed some important information in their considerations,…

    or might be missing some likely unintended consequences of what they’re about to enact,…

    but ample recent experience proves that you really have nothing to offer (and aren’t inclined to share it with the Democrats if you do, lest they enact better legislation and get the credit for it).

    Rather, you’re just trying to find something you can twist, exaggerate, or blow out of proportion in order to try to gain electoral advantage in two years. Your recent tenure in leading the legislature proved you have absolutely NO interest in actually doing the work of governing in a way that would produce a state government that provides useful services at manageable cost to ALL of our state’s citizens.

    We know that, given the chance, you’d take us right back to government which uses a smokescreen of social issues to cover your true agenda: protecting, caring for, caring about, and further enriching the already fabulously wealthy.

    We’ve been there. We’ve done that. We watched the movie which ran WAY too long. We don’t want to see it again for at least a generation,…

    and, unless you decide you want to govern in useful ways instead of just “winning” for your side and beating the “liberal” Democrats, we NEVER want to see it again.

  2. Submitted by Tom Anderson on 11/26/2012 - 09:18 pm.

    I’ve seen the recipie

    And I think more than a few people have an idea how it will turn out, but we’ll see in just a few short months. Hint: 40 billion.

Leave a Reply