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Zebra mussels found in Minnesota River

They’re herrrrreeee. A Mankato Free Press story says, “Zebra mussels have been found in the Minnesota River, and if they’re not yet in the rivers around Mankato, they soon will be. The Department of Natural Resources announced Thursday it has confirmed zebra mussels in a western stretch of the Minnesota River and has found some larvae as far down as New Ulm. Because there is no barrier, the invasive mussels will make their way down the 335-mile river and its confluence with the Mississippi River in the Twin Cities.”

Jason Lewis = not happy. Says the AP, “Minnesota Rep. Jason Lewis is taking issue with protesters who showed up outside of his home. The Wednesday morning protest at the first-term Republican congressman's suburban house was organized by Take Action Minnesota, a liberal advocacy group. Video footage posted on Lewis' Facebook page shows more than a dozen protesters chanting outside a home before delivering a large letter calling on Lewis to oppose cuts to Medicaid funding. Lewis is a former conservative radio talk show host who won the 2nd Congressional District seat this fall. He called the protest a violation of his private property and ‘dangerous ramping up of rhetoric’ that targeted his family.” 

It continues with a headline at the conservative Alpha News site, which says, “Liberal Protesters Swarm MN Congressman’s Private Home, Terrifying Neighbors.” To which Anders Koskinen writes, “Lewis took issue with the actions of Democrats running against him regarding this and other protests, and tied the increasingly divisive rhetoric back to the shooting of House Majority Whip Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA1). ‘Instead of condemning such threatening behavior, declared candidates on the other side of the aisle have actually participated in these spectacles and encouraged this wanton disregard of civility,’ Lewis wrote. ‘This isn’t just immature anymore; this is a dangerous ramping up of rhetoric that already has one of my House colleagues in rehab from a vicious attack.’”

Entirely related. MPR’s Brian Bakst took a drive across state Hwy. 1, way up north, checking in on Trump fans far from the cosmopolitan elites. “For every [voter critical of Trump], there were voters like Brent Mitchell, a fiber optics utility worker who sported a blue ‘We Support Mining’ T-shirt, matching the pro-mining signs in his Ely yard. ‘I love Trump,’ he said. ‘He's just a president that will actually do things. Controversial — I don't like the tweeting — but I like 'get it done.’ He's rooting for Trump to make it good to boost American steel, mining and pipeline projects. … While not in line with parts of Trump's domestic agenda, [Gregory] Davison is behind the push to rewrite the federal tax code. ‘The current income tax system is so complex,’ he said. ‘If he could simplify it, he'd have my support 100 percent.’" 

We’re among the lowest. Says Christopher Snowbeck for the Strib, “A new study shows that people who buy individual health insurance policies in the Twin Cities could be facing some of the lowest premium increases in the country next year — and that’s before any benefit from a state program that might knock down rates even further. The report Thursday from the California-based Kaiser Family Foundation says current rate requests from insurers would boost the monthly ‘benchmark’ premium in the Twin Cities by 5 percent next year.” Repeal and replace!

No recounts, please. KWQC-TV in Davenport, Iowa reports, “The Ronald McDonald House in Rochester, Minn. is about to receive its biggest donation yet. Jim Spinler, 75, has been collecting soda tabs for over 30 years after a friend stayed at the Rochester House decades ago. He has stored them in a transparent plexiglass box, the total collection weighing more than 2,000 lbs.” My wife says I have that many flashlights in my collection. (Hardware store impulse buying.)

Seems right. Says Chao Xiong in the Strib, “Valerie Castile will receive all of the money from a $3 million settlement in the death of her son, Philando Castile, after attorneys are paid. Hennepin County District Judge Susan Robiner issued the decision Wednesday after reviewing letters from Philando Castile’s father, who contested the move, and two half-brothers who didn’t ask for a penny. … Attorney fees will cost $995,000, leaving $2 million for distribution.” I hope she’s getting some good tax advice.

SadThe Duluth News Tribune’s Lisa Kaczke writes: “A father and daughter died Thursday after being swept away while swimming in the turbulent waters of Lake Superior off Park Point in Duluth. The two had been pulled from the water by emergency personnel during a search that lasted for more than an hour amid the large waves. The St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office reported late Thursday that the victims were a 10-year-old girl from Hudson, Wis., and a 38-year-old man from Osceola, Wis. Their names were being withheld pending notification of family.”

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Comments (11)

Tax advise for Philando's mom:

"...According to the IRS, any lawsuit settlement proceeds that a court awards for physical illness or injury are non-taxable. This includes wrongful death settlements, since the damages are imposed due to a court's finding that a third party is responsible for the physical illness or injury that resulted in death..."

Was it a court finding? If not can they tax the private settlement?

From the link "Back in 2014,

From the link "Back in 2014, the benchmark plan for a 40-year-old nonsmoker in Minneapolis was just $162 per month — the lowest such rate available on the ACA’s new health insurance exchanges. Rates have skyrocketed since then, with Kaiser putting the average annual rate of change from 2014 to 2018 at 24 percent."

So, after 4 years of double digit increases, Minnesota gets a brief reprieve. But wait!

Is it because the market has stabilized, or because you are simply paying more through the backdoor? You can guess the answer, probably....

"In response to some of the highest premium hikes in the country—50 to 67 percent, on average—Minnesota lawmakers passed a bailout for people who earn too much to qualify for the Affordable Care Act's federal tax credit. The $300 million law will cut monthly premiums by 25 percent for about 125,000 Minnesotans."
http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2017/02/06/513268571/minnesota-...

Anytime someone tries to tell you Obamacare has a silver lining, you can be sure they are being informed through fake news.

methinks he doth protest with too much hyperbole

As a frustrated constituent wanting to have face to face contact with Mr. Lewis (no communication back to my calls, emails and letters that isn't boilerplate form), and witnessing his clever "photo opportunity" type social media usage depicting him as in the district and engaged, I don't have sympathy for him here. Nothing on the video shows anything but chanting by a small, nonviolent group of folks, and dropping off a poster board on his stoop. The group doesn't condone violence, but demonstration. Dangerous? Not in my view. Threat to neighbors? Uh-uh. That's just not the style of Take Action MN. But it's his perfect excuse going forward to continue to avoid public meetings and town halls that aren't micromanaged like his radio show. Interesting how he answers this "dangerous ramping of rhetoric" with his own hyperbole, talk show host style. But I suppose with a game show host as president, having a talk show host as congressman shouldn't be so unusual, nor this behavior surprising.

I was a frustrated

I was a frustrated constituent of Betty McCollum for several years, and experienced the same disregard you say you are getting from Mr. Lewis. In fact, I was once prevented from entering a public meeting she held at the union hall in downtown SP.

Never occurred to me to bother her family at home, nor did it occur to any conservative soecial interest group.

In fact, although Im willing to be corrected, I cannot think of a single instance wherein conservatives have crossed that line.

Well that visit was pretty

Well that visit was pretty much a waste of time, but it was somewhat amusing that the author linked to a google search which listed several examples of lefty groups harassing GOP congressmen's families at home.

The fascinating aspect was the author seems to be suggesting that since lefties have done it elsewhere, that is justification for them to do it here.

The thought process behind that.....Amazing.

Please Tell Me

That you intentionally missed the point. Which was, in the past Lewis found that protesting at the homes of those in the public arena was just hunky-dory.

Next time they should all bring flip flops. Then those old ladies would look really threatening, at least to a delicate snow flake.

Plenty of blame to go around

I attended town hall meetings held by Betty McCollum in the run up to passing the Affordable Care Act. There was no shortage of Tea Party/Don't Tread on Me folks at the meetings, and no one prevented them from raising their point of view. Seems Betty was more willing to meet her constituents than Jason, at least back then.

Oh, and as for crossing the line: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/03/20/AR201003...

and

http://www.foxsports.com/nascar/story/minnesota-congresswoman-gets-death...

As for being corrected:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/03/28/AR201003...

Decrying the ramping up of rhotoric

while ramping up the rhetoric. Lewis is funny that way. One might ask him how comparing constituent who protesting to a shooter in DC is not ramping up the rhetoric (Side note: When Gabby Giffords and 18 others were shot, 6 died, in a Tuscon parking lot, I don't recall Jason and his ilk complaining about rhetoric.) or a breathless headline like this: “Liberal Protesters Swarm MN Congressman’s Private Home, Terrifying Neighbors.” calms the waters. One might ask him IF one could find him. I guess he is what the right would call a delicate snowflake that can't bear the chore of having to deal with the unwashed masses that are his constituents.

I Do Feel Bad

For the neighbors of Lewis. They can't even vote for him since he represents a district he doesn't live in.

Seriously?

They're his neighbors, they know the guy, do you really think they'd vote for him if they could?