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More reactions to MPR’s firing of Garrison Keillor

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Garrison Keillor

From Keillor. The Star Tribune’s Neal Justin writes: “The 75-year-old humorist who helped build MPR into a dynasty seemed more resigned and defensive than apologetic. ‘It’s astonishing that 50 years of hard work can be trashed in a morning by an accusation,’ he said in a Facebook post Wednesday evening. ‘I always believed in hard work and now it feels sort of meaningless. Only a friend can hurt you this badly. I think I have to leave the country in order to walk around in public and not feel accusing glances.’… He later deleted that public comment and then, in a post to Facebook friends … said he had just had a good conversation ‘with my dear friend who I am married to, on the subject of What Do We Really Need in Life. It’s very simple. I need her and I need to have work to do and I need to live someplace where we can both be happy.’”

In The New York Times, Maya Salam writes: “Over four decades, Mr. Keillor, 75, had created a financial juggernaut for the radio network with his weekly broadcast of songs, skits and tales of his fictional hometown Lake Wobegon, along with related books, recordings and other products. … ‘It’s some sort of poetic irony to be knocked off the air by a story, having told so many of them myself, but I’m 75 and don’t have any interest in arguing about this,’ he said. ‘And I cannot in conscience bring danger to a great organization I’ve worked hard for since 1969.’”

Jeff Baenen of the AP reports: “Keillor gave a statement to MPR News saying he had to ‘respect the privacy of the two employees who have made the allegations.’ A spokeswoman for MPR’s corporate arm didn’t immediately respond to questions from AP on whether Keillor was accused of bad behavior with more than one person.”

Meanwhile, over at MPR, Bob Collins says: “Keillor is an ardent DFLer who — as I wrote in 2010 — made it hard for journalists at MPR News because of his politics. People, actively encouraged to do so, connected everything MPR with Keillor and if Keillor was holding DFL pep rallies and campaigning against Michele Bachmann, then so must the rest of MPR, including the newsroom, reality be damned. Perception is reality. Politics is one thing, sexual harassment is another and now we’re stained, too, just as CBS, PBS, and the NBC Today show is.”

What would SPPS’ grade on this be? The Pioneer Press’ Josh Verges writes: “St. Paul Public Schools is reprinting report cards for close to 300 students after their first-quarter grades were misreported. School district spokeswoman Toya Stewart Downey said teachers last week were given an extension on a deadline to input their grades, but report cards were printed before the final changes were made. The district is mailing corrected grades to the homes of 252 students at Open World Learning and 39 at Murray Middle School, she said.”

Tin Fish out, Lola’s in. The Strib’s Faiza Mahamud writes: “The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board on Wednesday voted unanimously to approve a five-year lease with Lola’s to operate in the refectory building that housed Tin Fish for 14 years at Lake Calhoun, also known as Bde Maka Ska. … Lola’s Cafe will be the first black-owned business to work with the Park Board at Lake Calhoun. Lola’s on the Lake will open for business in April. It will serve fish tacos along with smoked chicken wings, pulled pork with macaroni and cheese, and rib tips. Soul-food Sunday brunches and gluten-free foods will also be on the menu.”

Maybe you’ve noticed? At WCCO-TV Mike Augustyniak says, “New analysis released today by Climate Central shows that, since 1970, average wintertime temperatures in Minnesota and Wisconsin are warming faster than almost any other area of the United States. The U.S. city that experienced the most warming was Burlington, Vermont, where average winter temperatures have risen 7.0°F in the last 47 years. Winters in Mankato and Minneapolis-St. Paul have each warmed 6.0°F during that period, the second- and third-largest increase among U.S. cities.”

Lest we forget about Wells Fargo, Charlie Pierce at Esquire takes a running smack at the bank: “At this point, if you told me that Wells Fargo was running dope out of Marseilles, and responsible for the unsolved murder of Roger Rabbit, I’d probably believe you. Seriously, this latest malfeasance alleged against the company, as reported by The Wall Street Journal and relayed to the shebeen via The New York Daily News, is further proof that this particular respected financial institution is about three fedoras short of being the Gambino family.”

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Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Barbara Boldenow on 11/30/2017 - 11:24 am.

    Really, Bob Collins?

    You whine because he supports DFL/Liberals/Progressives when radical right wing media has been taking over 99% of mainstream media for a couple decades? Are we not allowed any place to listen and learn and find shreds of what is really true and important. You, sir, are in the wrong place for your work if you believe that. Go away and let us continue listening.

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