News Day – February 3: Let them eat arts, RNC mistrial, undercounting the homeless, and more

Let them eat arts T-Paw’s plan to turn the Perpich Center for Arts Education into a charter school may have bipartisan support, writes Norman Draper in the Strib. Make that bipartisan support for killing the Perpich Center, which has been a proud national model of a statewide arts school and a center for arts education that sends staff to assist in arts education across the state and provides training sessions and resources for arts teachers from across the state. This is not a slam on charter schools – the fact is that the Guv’s move means cutting all the funding that enables Perpich to provide arts education for students and teachers, leaving it with state funding that pays only a per-pupil allotment equal to the funding formula for every other public school student. “Converting to a charter” in this case means taking away state resources, with no way to replace them. The Strib quotes Rudy Perpich, Jr.: “As my parents said, ‘Arts are always the first thing to be cut.”

Free–at last, sort of, at least for a while The jury deadlocked in the federal trial of RNC protester David McKay, accused of Molotov cocktail making and possession. While a March 16 retrial date has been set, the judge let McKay go free on bail. Writing in the PiPress, David Hanners reported that jurors apparently deadlocked over McKay’s claim that he would never have had anything to do with Molotov cocktails, but for the goaoding of federal informant Brandon Darby. McKay’s attorney said he was “a kid who came here to throw trash in the street,” not a bomber.

First-hand history recovered Almost a century after Lakota Chief Martin White Horse dictated stories about his community to Florence May Thwing, the typewritten document detailing 100 years of Lakota (Sioux) history has been re-discovered in a trunk by Thwing’s great-granddaughter. The winter count includes an entry for each year from 1790 to 1910, reports MPR:
(1835) In the year of stars moving in the sky.

(1845) In this year the Sioux Indians were starving and dying for lack of food because there had been no buffalos in their country for a long time. So they took the head of an old buffalo and painted it red, and placed it in a tepee and worshipped it with much singing and other things, and asked this buffalo head to send them buffalos to where they are located inside the boundary line. Their prayers were successful and many buffalos came to the place where they were camped, so the Sioux had again plenty of food.

MN Job Watch Macy’s announced Monday that it will cut 7,000 jobs, about four percent of its workforce, AP reports in the Strib. According to the Strib/AP report, Macy’s is centralizing, and its central buying, merchandise planning, stores senior management and marketing functions will be located primarily in New York. No word yet on any job cuts in MN, but Macy’s already closed its regional HQ in Minneapolis last year, cutting about 950 jobs, and announced the closing of its Brookdale store last month.

In Eden Prairie, ADC Telecommunications announced a general hiring freeze and plans for unspecified layoffs, reports Leslie Suzukamo in the PiPress. ADC announced layoffs of 160-190 MN workers in October as part of a global reduction in force. The Eden Prairie-based company has about 10,500 workers worldwide, and announced a quarterly loss of 17-23 cents per share.

TPM says RNC Chair Michael Steele is coming “straight outta Hooverville,” with his bogus claim that: “Not in the history of mankind has the goverment ever created a job,” saying “This is such transparent nonsense it’s hard to know where to start … Has Steele every heard of government road building? Defense spending? … ” Ann Markusen writes in MinnPost that “Few elements of the forthcoming stimulus program would pump money into the economy faster and more efficiently than the funds to states to refresh depleted unemployment insurance, social safety nets, and college aid programs.”

(Under)counting the homeless January is the wrong time to count homeless people, reports Madeleine Baran in the TC Daily Planet, but that’s the time mandated by the federal government. In a related article, Session Weekly reports that one in eight Minnesota households spends more than half its income on housing, and that the average cost for rentals is now higher than $900/month. All that, as Twin Cities home values fell 10 percent last year, according to Jim Buchta in the Strib.

Leave a comment

Filed under news

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s