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Best Buy's Christmas 'not the disaster people were fearing'

What does it say when “flat” is good? Adam Belz of the Strib says: “Best Buy's U.S. sales flattened through the holidays and online revenue grew, both of which analysts saw as encouraging signs after three quarters of declines. The Richfield-based company reported revenue of $12.8 billion for the nine weeks that ended Jan. 5, compared to $12.9 billion for the same period a year ago. Global sales fell 1.4 percent over the period, beating analyst estimates.”

At Bloomberg, Chris Burritt writes: “Global comparable sales fell 1.4 percent, less than the 2 percent decline projected by analysts Mike Baker at Deutsche Bank AG and Scott Tilghman of B. Riley & Co. ‘The results make it more likely that Schulze can put a deal on the table with domestic same-store sales stable,’ Erik Gordon, a business and law professor at the University of Michigan, said today by telephone from Ann Arbor. ‘It also gives the board greater bargaining power now that they’ve got the first glimmer of a turnaround. It was not the disaster that people were fearing.' "

America, land of opportunity. Molly Guthrey of the PiPress reports: “Talk about accountability — and pressure — to keep that New Year's resolution: Beth Blair of Eagan is the new Weight Loss Diary columnist for Shape magazine. Throughout 2013, America can follow along as Blair, 38, documents her efforts to lose 30 pounds as she also juggles her family and her career. In her debut January column, on newsstands now, Blair describes an epic battle of gaining and losing — and gaining again — the same 50 pounds. Beginning last year, when Blair was working as a flight attendant, she realized she had to find a different way to fight the battle of the bulge.” That reminds me, who ate all those Häagen-Dazs bars I bought?

Did you see this? Briana Bierschbach of Politics in Minnesota writes: “Longtime Republican political operatives Ben Golnik and Tom Erickson have started a new political fund with a year-round focus on economic issues. The Minnesota Jobs Coalition was registered with the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure board on Thursday. In a news release announcing the fund, Golnik said the PAC will work to represent ‘hard-working taxpayers’ at the Capitol during session. ‘With the legislative session only two days old, Minnesotans have already seen an avalanche of tax increase proposals. This group will fight to ensure that the interests of hard-working taxpayers are represented in Saint Paul,’ Golnik wrote.”  The seeds of Citizens United just continue to give …

On his blog, Paul Douglas writes: “Winters are trending warmer over time. Today's blog shows trends in Heating Degree Days & compelling evidence that MSP is already in USDA Climate Zone 5. The coldest nighttime lows of winter in the Twin Cities are much warmer (now) than they were 20-30 years ago. The data is the data. Facts on the ground. We should see an average of 30 subzero nights every winter. Last winter? 3. This winter we may see 3-6 nights below zero; a few glancing blows of Arctic air the next 2 weeks. It'll be a pale imitation of the brutal blasts we endured back in the 1970s and early 1980s. Ice is possible up north today but the metro area sees light rain and drizzle; highs top 40 under a March-like sky. Enjoy the warm front, because a cold wind chill returns tomorrow; Sunday will be nearly 30 degrees colder than today. We thaw out briefly the middle of next week. A subzero low is possible late next week, again around January 21.”

The GleanHe’s just a guy with a tremendous thirst for public service. In the Mankato Free Press, Mark Fishenich writes: “Retired St. Peter farmer Allen Quist, who served in the state House in the 1980s before a series of unsuccessful runs for the governor's office and Congress, easily won the Republican endorsement Thursday night for a special election to fill a vacant seat in the state House. ... Quist won 85 percent of the vote on the first ballot — easily topping the 60 percent required and overwhelming Le Sueur County Veterans Services Officer Jim Golgart and former St. Peter City Councilman Joel Brinker. … Held in the vacated movie theater in Mankato Place, the convention was far from a thriller. Just 41 delegates showed up, filling less than half of the 90-plus delegate slots available.”

On his blog, The Deets, Ed Kohler tries to get the city to do something about a urine-smelling LRT station elevator. Hilarity, or at least exasperation ensues:
“For example, check out this exchange with Minneapolis 311:
From: Ed Kohler
Subject: Lake Street LRT Stop Elevators Smell like urine
They seem overdue for a thorough cleaning.
- Ed Kohler
The response:
Dear Mr. Kohler,
We appreciate your email. Light rail is owned and maintained by Metro Transit. They can be reached at 612-373-3333 or via their webpage at
If there is anything else we can help you with please contact us. Thank you for emailing the City of Minneapolis.
Minneapolis 311
Office 612-673-3000 Hours: 7 am – 7 pm (Monday – Friday)
Interesting, eh?
If there is graffiti on my house, or my property wreaked of urine, would the city take the same approach? Would they tell people to call me to solve their problem? I doubt it.
If graffiti was reported on the Target store 50 yards from the stinky LRT elevators, wouldn’t 311 hold Target responsible for maintaining their property?
Why is Metro Transit, who owns property in the City of Minneapolis, treated differently than individual property owners?”

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Comments (4)


Actually, Ed, property owners ARE required to maintain their property. The city doesn't do it for free. Owners are supposed to clean graffiti, keep the landscaping looking good, etc. Yes, the city will in extreme cases send teams out to clean things up but the property owner gets a nice hefty fine for their troubles.

It's entirely appropriate for the city to direct you to Metro Transit.

This is a big bunch o' nutin'.

How Orwellian is it

to call an anti-tax group The Minnesota Jobs Coalition?

Tax cutting doesn't bring in good jobs, it brings in predatory corporations who scam for state and federal money then declare bankruptcy when they've glommed on to all the free cash eager Republican operatives/lobbyists shovel their way.

Before this legislature passes any "jobs" legislation, they should look next door to Wisconsin to see how similar measures worked there. WI is currently #48 out of 50 states for new jobs, and Republican economic policies are the reason why.

You Have to Watch for the Code Words

This "new?" "Minnesota Jobs Coalition" is just the same old, punish the poor, enrich the already fabulously wealthy B.S. that the GOP has been trying to sell since the days of Ronnie Raygun.

The relevant code word is "hard-working," by which our Republican friends do NOT mean you and me and all the regular folks in the state - you know, people who actually WORK for a living (or, in my case, did before they retired).

For our Republican friends, the only indicator of whether you are a "hard-working" person, is that you are ALREADY fabulously wealthy. That's it. That's the sum total of who they care about.

As we saw all the way through Tim Pawlenty's Governorship (and his work in the legislature prior to that) and in their control of the legislature for the past two years, the ONLY approach the Republicans have for creating jobs is cutting taxes on their fabulously wealthy friends,...

an approach which has long since proven not to create so much as ONE, SINGLE, JOB.

Thankfully, the general public finally woke up to where the hangover from drinking that medicine show, snake oil was coming from and the current generations aren't buying even one more bottle of it any time in the foreseeable future.

But, by all means, my Republican friends, keep flogging that already-proved-we-can't-do-it-that-way dead horse. Despite the rank smell and the plague of flies buzzing around your heads, you might beat some life back into it yet!

Whatever you do, please, please, please don't put any energy into trying to think up any new and creative ideas that might work out well for the rest of the citizens of the state. It's been so long since you did so, we'd all keel over from the shock.

Nine (Political) Lives

How many does Allen Quist have left?