How the Twin Cities is pitching itself for the Army’s high-tech ‘Futures Command’ center

The GleanI mean, it’s not like we’re running out of enemies. Jim Spencer of the Strib writes, “The Twin Cities area is battling for a new military headquarters that could help secure the region’s high-tech economy for decades. The recruiting war for the Army Futures Command is not as high profile as the struggle to attract Amazon’s secondary base of operations. But a research and development headquarters that intends to partner with local talent on the next generation of technical innovations for the largest branch of the U.S. military is a pipeline to high-paying jobs from a steady funding source.” 

Congratulations are in order. At MPR Nina Moini writes, “An English teacher at an alternative high school in Shakopee is the 2018 Minnesota Teacher of the Year. Kelly Holstine, who has taught at Tokata Learning Center since 2012, received the honor Sunday afternoon at a celebration in Bloomington. She’s the 54th recipient of the award, and the first from the Shakopee district. Holstine was among 12 finalists selected from among the 86,000 members of the teachers’ union Education Minnesota.”

Also from MPR’s Moini, “The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources wants the public’s help to track an expanding black bear population across the state. Minnesota’s black bear range has been slowly expanding southward and westward, according to the DNR. To better understand and document those changes, the DNR has launched a new app on its website to gather information about bear sightings in southern and western parts of the state.” 

Thanks, but while I’m here, could you look at this wart? Says the AP: “Mayo Clinic has installed dozens of interactive kiosks throughout its Rochester campus aimed at making it easier for patients to check in for appointments. The devices are part of Mayo Clinic’s $1.5 billion transition to Epic Systems technology, the Post Bulletin reported. The kiosks are part of a new online patient portal and have been installed at other Mayo Clinic Health Systems locations in Wisconsin and Minnesota. The kiosks will next be installed in Arizona and Florida.”

Frac sand mining has its day in court: From the AP: “Winona County, the only county in Minnesota to ban the mining of silica sand for use by the oil and gas industry in hydraulic fracturing, goes to court Monday to defend the ban. Minnesota Sands LLC, which holds extensive mineral rights in southeastern Minnesota, is challenging the legality before the Minnesota Court of Appeals.”

Not a good trend. Tim Harlow of the Strib reports, “New research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found hit-and-run crashes are occurring at an alarming rate, with one every 43 seconds. In 2016, more than 2,049 people were killed in crashes in which at least one party left the scene. That was the highest number on record and an increase of 60 percent since 2009, according to the study, which analyzed data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Minnesota recorded 18 hit-and-run deaths in 2016, the most since 2013, when there were 15.”

To treat a glaucoma epidemic, perhaps? Says Stribber Paul Walsh, “More than 1,400 mar­i­jua­na plants were seized in a home west of the Twin Cities, and two men were ar­rest­ed in what a sher­iff said was the most so­phis­ti­cat­ed op­er­a­tion of its kind he has seen in his quar­ter-cen­tu­ry in law en­force­ment. … Sher­iff Brian Cruze said that in his 24-year law en­force­ment ca­reer, in­clud­ing 15 years work­ing in nar­cot­ics, he has ‘nev­er seen such a so­phis­ti­cat­ed op­er­a­tion with this many mar­i­jua­na plants.’”

A little sympathy for the people in red. For Business Insider Aine Cain says, “Business Insider recently corresponded with 21 Target employees to get a sense of the worst things they’ve ever seen while working at the retail chain. And, from the sound of it, they’ve seen it all. … A total of eight Target employees told Business Insider that they’ve seen guests — or customers’ dogs — defecate, urinate, or vomit in the store. ‘Once someone smeared poop all over the wall leading to and from the restrooms,’ an employee from California told Business Insider. Another Target team member told Business Insider that a customer once brought her sick daughter on a shopping trip, only for the girl to vomit all over the store.”

It’s a fine print world, kids. Says a Strib editorial, “Riding an all-terrain vehicle and cruising through winter on a snowmobile are classic ways to enjoy the Minnesota outdoors. But sadly, accidents do happen. Now imagine that heartache compounded by a financial nightmare: finding out that the fine print in a loved one’s health insurance plan excludes their injuries from coverage simply because of the activity he or she was engaged in. This troubling scenario ought to be in the forefront of consumers’ minds as the Trump administration and Minnesota Republican legislators push a dubious health reform — allowing short-term limited duration health plans, which exclude a surprising number of medical care needs, to provide coverage for up to a year instead of a matter of months.” You want something better? Move to a socialist hellhole, like Sweden.

Meanwhile … in Wisconsin: “A retired Wisconsin prison guard has eaten his 30,000th Big Mac, nearly 46 years after eating his first,” says the AP. “ WBAY-TV reports that 64-year-old Don Gorske of Fond du Lac recorded the milestone at a local McDonald’s on Friday. Gorske says he’s eaten at least one Big Mac almost every day since May 17, 1972. … He says his cholesterol and blood pressure are normal.”

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