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Assault-style guns selling fast in Worthington; retired prof floats Newtown conspiracy theory

assault rifle
REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
People concerned about losing their right to buy assault-style rifles and ammunition appear to be stocking up on the weapons.

Julie Buntjer of the Worthington Daily Globe reports that sales of semi-automatic, assault-style rifles and ammunition are going through the roof. Pawn It owner Vance Johanning said he has a waiting list of people wanting to buy an AR-15 and other rifles like it that are capable of firing in quick succession. While Johanning speculates the spike is the result of people wanting  guns for personal protection, gun dealer Daryl Behrends said people are concerned they may not be able to buy assault-type weapons in the future. The AR-15 is a civilian-modified M16 that is considered a modern sporting rifle, Behrends said. “They’re very nice for fox and coyote. Because of running shots, you may not hit them the first two or three shots.” While the Sandy Hook massacre has ignited a debate about gun control, Nobles County Sheriff Kent Wilkening takes the long view. “The bigger issue is that in eight of the last nine shootings around the country, most of these people have had a mental health issue. That’s probably one of the bigger issues we need to look at — get more involved and get them more help — cut them off before these things happen.”

James Fetzer, a retired University of Minnesota Duluth professor, is claiming the U.S. government and Israeli secret operatives are responsible for the Newtown, Conn., school shootings. Jana Hollingsworth of the Duluth News Tribune wrote about his theory, and her story has been picked up by the Pioneer Press, and covered in a City Pages blog. Fetzer’s column appeared as “Mossad death squads slaughtered American children at Sandy Hook” on the PressTV website and then he elaborated on the theory several days later on the Veterans Today site. He also authored the column “Sandy Hook: Huge hoax and anti-gun psy op” on the n.s.n.b.c. site. Trust me, reading these columns is like falling down Alice’s rabbit hole, only more bizarre.

Briefly, Fetzer believes recent episodes of gun violence are part of a plot to enact assault-weapon regulations that will pave the way for a bloody government war against American civilians, led by the Department of Homeland Security and using – let me see if I have this right – “more than 300 FEMA camps and special boxcars to carry dissidents to them.” Now on to the UMD connection. According to the News Tribune, Fetzer lives in Oregon, Wis., taught philosophy for 19 years at UMD, and retired from UMD in 2006. As a professor emeritus, he has a UMD email address and uses it as his contact. He also touts conspiracies involving the Kennedy assassination, 9/11 and the plane crash in which Sen. Paul Wellstone died. 

Adam Harringa of the Austin Daily Herald does a nice job of pulling apart Hormel’s recent purchase of Skippy. Hormel announced Wednesday it is buying Skippy for $700 million, the largest deal in company history. It will immediately add 4 percent to 5 percent in total annual sales, but Hormel CEO and president Jeff Ettinger has bigger plans. In a word: China. Peanut butter and Spam are just catching on in the world’s second largest economy. Here’s an interesting fact: Only about 4 percent of Hormel’s revenue comes from outside the U.S. Skippy, however, is sold in more than 30 countries and is the leading peanut butter in China. Total annual sales for Skippy are expected to be about $370 million, with nearly $100 million of that outside the U.S. — $30 million to $40 million from China alone. Other interesting facts: Ettinger said the acquisition won’t have a direct impact on Austin aside from a few new corporate positions in marketing and research/development. Skippy will continue to be made at its current plants in Little Rock, Ark., and Weifang, China. Peanut butter is a $2 billion business, and is the second most popular sandwich in the United States behind ham (I have no idea where that fact came from, but it makes sense). Lastly, Ettinger said Spam is testing shelf-stable microwavable meals such as jambalaya made with Spam. It’s also considering a variety of macaroni and cheese dinners made with Spam. Who knew?

I guess if you want nude dancing, you’re going to get nude dancing. In a story about three men who conducted a protest about nude dancing in Lynd, Steve Browne of the Marshall Independent produced this history: The Juice Bar opened in October. In early November, the Lynd City Council passed an ordinance which established a $3,000 per year licensing fee and required an adult business must be located at least 700 feet from a residence, playground, day care, or other adult business and limited the hours of operation from 10 p.m. to midnight. Now, according to Dale Peterson, The Juice Bar is a private residence that hosts private parties. A $10 donation is suggested. Last Friday, about six women were dancing for tips for an audience of less than a dozen people. Outside, John Chisham, Jake Larson and Eric Espinosa protested against the private residence formerly known as The Juice Bar. Larson, who said he is a pastor at Bethel Fellowship in Minneota, was using a portable loudspeaker system to tell partygoers they were objectifying women. Later, Lyon County Deputy Sheriff Adam Connor responded to a complaint about the loudspeaker from a Juice Bar neighbor. Connor told the men to turn off the loudspeaker. "I can't regulate the content of the speech," he said, "only the noise level." Chisham said he'll continue to be in front of the residence most Fridays and Saturdays.

As the new legislative session opens today, St. Cloud-area lawmakers are hoping to get a few projects off the ground, according to Mark Sommerhauser of the St. Cloud Daily Times. First on tap is state bonding money to expand the River’s Edge Convention Center, even though large construction bills such as what would fund River’s Edge aren’t traditionally enacted in Minnesota in odd-numbered years. However, Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton has been a steady supporter of St. Cloud for years and the DFL-controlled Legislature may provide state funds for local projects. Rep.-elect Zachary Dorholt, DFL-St. Cloud, says he’ll champion a proposal to extend the Northstar commuter trains to St. Cloud. Rep. Tim O’Driscoll, R-Sartell, says he would rather pursue expanding I-94 between St. Cloud and the Twin Cities. Sen. John Pederson, R-St. Cloud, previously promoted construction of a new freeway connection between I-94 and U.S. Highway 10 and says he would likely carry Dorholt’s Northstar bill in the Senate. Pederson and Dorholt say they’ll work to address school funding issues such as maintaining integration aid, a funding source that has become vital to a more racially diverse St. Cloud school district.

Fire destroyed the Tri-County Livestock Auction building in Motley Sunday night. Jennifer Stockinger of the Brainerd Dispatch wrote that the building was a complete loss. No one was hurt and there were no livestock in the building. Officials said the fire started in the attic above the cafeteria area, but the cause of the fire is unknown. Tri-County Livestock Auction sells hogs, sheep and all classes of cattle and is owned by Joe Varner and managed by John Eischeid and Wayne Hoffman. The business is located off Highway 10, one mile west of Motley. Joe Eischeid said his father, John Eischeid, and Hoffman sold the business in 1998. Eischeid and Hoffman manage the sale barn and own the feed yard around the building. “My dad and Wayne built that barn in 1981,” Eischeid said. “I grew up in it. ... To watch it burn was not something I ever wanted to do. It’s a business that started with a thought that these two guys had, that is the hardest part to deal with (seeing it burn). They built everything that is there.”

Fergus Falls wants to become more bike-friendly, the Fergus Falls Journal is reporting.  Certified cycling instructor David Sanderson said the city may have an application ready to send to the League of American Bicyclists by late February. If approved, Fergus Falls may become the sixth official “Bicycle Friendly Community” in Minnesota and the 216th nationwide. The city is already connected to the Central Lakes Trail, which has miles of cycling lanes. “It has been shown in other communities that people look at things like this when they move to a community,” Sanderson said. “Those little things add up, and it helps to attract people. It really does make a difference.”

Fritz Busch gets all the good stories. He writes in the New Ulm Journal that the Goosetown Roller Girls inaugurated roller derby competition Saturday with a nine-team mixer at the Lake Crystal Recreation Center. He gets all the requisite information into the story, but the best part is the nicknames. The Goosetown Roller Girls feature teammates such as VaudeVille, Deutschland Dolly, RIP Tease, Bruiseberry Jam and Sour Kraut. Rink Floyd of St. Paul is a roller derby official who came to watch the event. The St. Cloud team is called the SCAR (St. Cloud Area Rollers) Dolls, the Rochester team is the Med City Mafia. The Babe City Rollers are from Bemidji (motto: “Skating Our Axes Off”), the MAD Girls are from Mankato, the Iron Range Maidens and the Attackonites are from Grand Rapids and the Duluth Derby Divas are from, well, Duluth. And, just for fun, check out this photo from the Rock City Riot men’s team of Fargo-Moorhead promoting a contest between the Quad Brawlers and Hipcheck Murphys. Come together indeed.

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Comments (6)

Mental Health

Is the Fetzer item supposed to be support for the need for more mental health services? ;-)



......“They’re very nice for

......“They’re very nice for fox and coyote. Because of running shots, you may not hit them the first two or three shots.” .....

That phrase deserves two letters, "B" and "S".

If you are hunting moving game (a generally dubious proposition) and don't know how to or can't hit it on the first shot you better not be letting off another 3, 4 or 5 or more shots. The animal doesn't slow down after the first shot and your shooting becomes even worse after the first shot.

This is B.S.

A smooth bolt action and a steady hold over open ground will do the job just fine. If not, don't shoot.

Jack & Jill go up the hill to buy an assault weapon.Jack fell...

Whether the run on assault weapons is an investment or for use, legal or otherwise...but things don't get better only more covert like Prohibition and if one thinks this issue is a mess and controversial in debating, read what our military has come up with to make for future complications..."Self-steering bullet researched by US weapons experts" BBC News technology, 1/31 @012 and updated"

"The public may be uncomfortable with the implications of people using this without having a sight line to the target..." "There's talk of selling to recreational hunters hunters, but I would imagine the public's access to this kind of technology" BBC quoting...

Big drones to little drones, size of a bullet and how soon for domestic use and will it boomerang also as we waste hours defining private and public right to bear arms or drone-bullets as our military continues to build greater weapons to confuse Joe Blow and his wife Joanna who are wedded to a mutual fear; a common state of mind, and we all shoot ourselves in the foot and then some?

Or are we hyping the issue ... and that itself creates a state of mind unable to cope with the resultant fear, hate that strives in public and private attitudes so centered on ourselves. our own domestic security now..

We assume we know what's best for others and blast the life out of small nations and technology's boomerang comes back to make us the victim of our own brutal responses on a world stage?

There are no solutions; no clean answers...the crow outside my window gives a cautionary call. Go tell this one to the birds, Crow; armed or peace loving...a good world is hard to find these days?


Prohibition is estimated to have significantly reduced the consumption of alcohol (by about 60% bu some estimates).
Not perfect, but not a failure either.