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Minnesota municipal liquor stores see record sales

Plus: U coach Pitino defends embattled father; Sex World to get a facelift; driver pulled over for drinking coffee on I-94; and more.

Who needs Wisconsin?  For KMSP-TV Rachel Chazin reports, “There were 200 Minnesota cities operating 233 municipal liquor stores in 2014. According to the report, Lakeville, Edina, and Eden Prairie respectively had the highest gross sales for 2014. … Minnesota’s municipal liquor operations reported a 19th consecutive year of record sales, totaling $335.6 million in 2014. Total sales generated in 2014 increased by $2.8 million from 2013.”

Whatever else happens, he’ll always have junior. The AP story says, “Minnesota coach Richard Pitino defended his embattled father Wednesday, saying Rick Pitino had no knowledge of a former staffer allegedly paying escorts to have sex with recruits and players in a Louisville dorm. ”I know, and I told him this, `Put your head on the pillow at night and know that you did nothing wrong and that you certainly had no knowledge of this,’ Richard Pitino said Wednesday.” The thing is, of course, they pay the old man a lot of money to know.

Eighty-eight recommendations. The AP says, “A state panel is recommending 88 environmental projects for over $45.4 million in funding from Minnesota Lottery proceeds and related sources. The Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources on Tuesday selected the proposals from 97 that had made the initial cut last month, out of an original 186 submitted for consideration. … The biggest chunk of money, over $12 million, or 27 percent of the total, would go toward land acquisition for habitat and recreation.”

The progressives are showing Angie Craig some love. Simone Pathe at Roll Call writes, “Minnesota Democrat Angie Craig won the backing of the Congressional Progressive Caucus Wednesday in her quest to secure the Democratic-Farmer-Labor endorsement in Minnesota’s open 2nd District. Securing the support of 72 members of Congress is a strong boost for Craig … . This is the first endorsement of the cycle from the CPC, which is co-chaired by Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison. Fellow Minnesota Rep. Rick Nolan is also a member of the caucus. Three members of the caucus — Wisconsin Rep. Mark Pocan, California Rep. Mark Takano and Colorado Rep. Jared Polis — had already backed Craig, a health care executive.”

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Today in heterosporis. Liz Sawyer of the Strib says, “After more than a decade, University of Minnesota researchers have renewed studies on a malicious fish parasite that slowly dissolves muscle cells, ruining the fillet. The parasite, called Heterosporis, is commonly found in north-central Minnesota and northeastern Wisconsin, where it has befuddled anglers who catch fish and find they have a freezer-burnt appearance. Yellow perch are some of the most widely affected by the disease, which turns the fillet opaque white instead of translucent and is often observed only after it has been cleaned. ‘It’s essentially liquefying them,’ said Nick Phelps, a U researcher and assistant professor.” Now, in a cheesy sci-fi movie, the mad scientist/Pentagon lackey would try to militarize this stuff and … .

Perhaps a Sex World-themed restaurant? Says Kristen Leigh-Painter in the Strib, “Significant cosmetic changes are in store for the Sex World building in Minneapolis, with a new owner hoping to give the weary old structure — and the street corner it occupies — a new attitude. The developer-buyer, Minneapolis-based Falcon Ridge Partners, pulled back the curtain on its plans for the first time publicly Wednesday night … . The vision is to transform the two adjoined buildings, built in 1877 and 1887, with a more welcoming and open street presence. Falcon Ridge hopes to land a destination restaurant and another retailer on the ground floor with sun-drenched creative office space (and possibly another boutique retailer) above.” Are lumbersexuals into latex?

Too creepy for Halloween. WCCO-TV’s story says, “Champlin police say a 38-year-old woman was arrested and has admitted sending anonymous threats to a family that said she wanted to taste and lick their children. Police say the woman was upset because the children made noise and left items in her yard. Carrie Pernula was arrested Friday and faces possible charges of gross misdemeanor terroristic threats and stalking.”

Ben Kesling of The Wall Street Journal covers the latest twist in the long-running saga of those five Somali men. “Five Minnesota men accused of attempting to join Islamic State have also been charged by a federal grand jury with conspiracy to murder overseas, the U.S. Attorney for Minnesota announced Wednesday. … Bruce Nestor, lawyer for Abdurahman Daud, said there is no compelling new evidence in the case and that the additional charges are politically motivated.”

To quote Walter Sobchek, “I’m finishing my coffee.” In the Strib, Paul Walsh writes, “A motorist sipped on a cup of coffee while driving along Interstate 94 after the morning rush hour in St. Paul, and she was immediately pulled over by a state trooper. In dispute, however, is why. Lindsay Krieger insisted Wednesday that bringing the McDonald’s cup to her lips prompted the stop and she did nothing to endanger her or the other drivers around her Monday on eastbound I-94 near Dale Street. The trooper, Krieger said, was determined to lecture her about her java consumption while in motion.  … She also acknowledged getting busted in Eagan when she was in her early 20s for eating Cheerios out of a cup while waiting in line to make a turn.”

On the sex abuse trial of a priest in Duluth: Elizabeth Mohr of the PiPress says, “There’s no dispute that the Rev. James Vincent Fitzgerald sexually abused a Minnesota teen in 1978, according to opposing attorneys in a lawsuit filed by the victim. The question for a jury: Who supervised the priest when the abuse took place? The victim’s attorney, Jeff Anderson, said during his opening statement Wednesday that the Diocese of Duluth was charged with overseeing the priest while he worked in one of its parishes, where the abuse took place. The diocese’s attorney, Susan Gaertner — former Ramsey County attorney-turned-defense attorney — said that because Fitzgerald was an oblate priest, a member of a religious order, the leader of his order was in charge of his oversight, not the diocese where the order placed him.”

Conservative Power Line blogger and attorney Scott Johnson has an interest in Jesse Ventura and his legal issues. He writes, “Ventura has become a visibly unsavory character of bad judgment. These qualities are on display in the video of his comments posted by the Star Tribune. In his comments Ventura mockingly disparaged the late Chris Kyle as ‘Superman.’ Unfortunately, Kyle isn’t around any longer to defend himself. One is left to reflect what a poor excuse for a man Ventura is, and not just by contrast with Kyle. As he has done in his lawsuit and elsewhere, outside the courthouse Ventura attributed the decline in his fortunes over the years to what Kyle wrote about him in American Sniper. If one were to take Ventura’s comments at face value, one might infer that Ventura is a man in need of an intervention of some kind. One wonders if he has any friends left. He needs to summon the fortitude to look at himself in the mirror.” Jesse’s distaste for George W. wouldn’t have anything to do with this would it?