Nonprofit, nonpartisan journalism. Supported by readers.


Pair of tornados touch down, the earliest ones ever in Minnesota

And you thought the lightning was weird enough. The KMSP-TV story says, “A confirmed tornado was located near Zimmerman, Minnesota at 5:49 p.m. Monday.  At 5:56 p.m., a confirmed tornado was located over the south side of Princeton, Minnesota, moving northeast at 40 mph. Sherbune County emergency dispatchers confirmed reports of damage in Zimmerman and Princeton, including downed trees, downed power lines and roof damage. The previous record for earliest verified tornado in Minnesota occurred was March 18, 1968, north of Truman, Minnesota.” As the great man says, blame the Chinese.

Kind of related. Also from KMSP: “Bald eagles are migrating back to Minnesota and may soon be spotted in large groups, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Spring migration, which usually coincides with ice-out, is currently one or two weeks ahead of schedule.   DNR regional Nongame Wildlife specialist Lisa Gelvin-Innvaer said this is due to an especially warm February, which melted the ice along the rivers. Only two states, Florida and Alaska, have greater nesting populations of bald eagles than Minnesota. In 2005, researchers estimated there are more than 1,300 active nests in Minnesota.” I suppose this means the crazy neighbors will be back early from Florida, too.

AT MPR, Elizabeth Dunbar says, “We know warming temperatures and heavy rains are associated with a changing climate. But even with that understanding, this winter was startling. What we don’t know yet is whether this winter will remain an outlier, or become a new norm that won’t seem unusual to our kids and grandkids when they look back on it someday.”

Heck, even the Timberwolves were “condensed out.” Jace Frederick in the PiPress says, “The Timberwolves’ game against Portland was postponed Monday because of condensation on the floor. ‘It was (wet) everywhere’, said Wolves point guard Kris Dunn, who warmed up on the floor prior to the game. Target Center was the site of a Disney on Ice show this weekend and will host the National Collegiate Hockey Conference tournament, which starts March 17. Thus, a sheet of ice currently exists under the court. … Dunn said the court was fine Monday morning during the team’s shootaround, but condensation started to rise to the floor level as the day progressed. Brad Ruiter, the Timberwolves’ vice president of communications, said unseasonable humidity contributed to the problem. Temperatures cracked the 60s in the Twin Cities on Monday.”

They won’t be alone in that “challenging” thing. Says the AP, “The Minnesota chapter of a Muslim civil rights organization says President Donald Trump’s new travel ban must be challenged. Jaylani Hussein is executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Minnesota. He says Trump is trying to make the discriminatory ban more palatable to the courts. But Hussein says it’s really an attempt to legalize bigotry.” That was in the platform, wasn’t it?

What, you have problems with The Chick-fil-A Midwest Regional Air Traffic Control Center? At the Strib, Kristin Leigh Painter reports, “Mayors from small and midsize cities across Minnesota and the country are concerned about efforts to privatize the nation’s air traffic control system, a move they fear would harm rural airports and communities. … These mayors worry that would give commercial airlines an outsized role in governing the system and could lead to a loss of air service, loss of federal ‘critical airport’ designations, higher fees and financial infeasibility.”

Uh, that it was a scam was no big surprise. Dan Browning at the Strib says, “John L. Steele, a University of Minnesota Law School graduate who once bragged to a reporter that he and a colleague earned millions of dollars by suing hundreds of people for illegally downloading pornography, admitted Monday in a Minneapolis federal courtroom that it was a scam. Steele, a former Chicago lawyer who now lives in Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and wire fraud, and conspiracy to launder money.”

The Strib is endangering its standing with the Trump crowd. In an editorial, it says, “This country can ill afford to have some of its most important law enforcement entities at war with one another and with the administration. Sadly, Congress’ extreme reticence to take on the fomented ravings of this president means it is no longer in a position to do a credible investigation. Americans deserve — and want — answers on whether an adversarial nation had inappropriate ties to a presidential campaign. A recent CNN/ORC poll shows that two-thirds of the public supports the appointment of an independent prosecutor who can put these issues to rest. It is the same poll that shows more than half still supporting Trump.” Fomented ravings? 

Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Frank Phelan on 03/07/2017 - 12:33 pm.

    Which Side Are You On?

    That was the question asked in an old labor song, “Which side are you on, boys? Which side are you on?”

    That could be asked of mayors small and mid-sized cites across Minnesota and the country who fear privatizing airports. Remember, these “small and mid-sized cities” recently elected the small government crowd at both the state and federal levels.

    So a good question to ask these citizens and their mayors is, “Which side are you on? The side of small government or the side of big government?”

    I suspect that the wit and wisdom of the late Ron Rosenbaum would apply here and he might say that it all depends on whose ox is being gored.

Leave a Reply