Desperately seeking ISIS

Featured image Over the past few months I’ve been researching law enforcement issues related to Minnesota’s large community of Somali immigrants. The Paris massacres and Syrian refugee crisis have given the issues a renewed timeliness. I turned some of my research to use in the article just published by the Weekly Standard: “The threat from ‘Minnesota men.'” Please check it out! I am grateful to Standard managing editor Richard Starr and his »

Al Franken: Don’t worry, just a few bad apples

Featured image Minnesota Senator Al Franken appeared on WCCO’s Sunday Morning with Esme Murphy yesterday to talk about the Paris massacres. WCCO has posted an unembeddable video under the heading “Franken talks on Paris attacks, fight against ISIS.” It also posted here on Facebook with unamused comments. Minnesota has sent more residents to fight with ISIS than any other of the 50 states. When it comes to supplying ISIS with foreign fighters, »

Gilson grapples with truth

Featured image The Star Tribune has published two letters responding to my column about the Rathergate film Truth. The lead letter is by Gary Gilson, former executive director of the Minnesota News Council. This seems to be the best of what Star Tribune readers who responded had to say: Scott W. Johnson (“Lies upon lies: The sad state of ‘Truth,’ ” Nov. 1) condemns the movie “Truth” for making heroes out of the »

Halting Halbertal

Featured image Minnesota United States Attorney Andrew Luger took to the pages of the Star Tribune to denounce the “Islamophobia” allegedly rampant in “the news.” The column appeared under the heading “Minnesotans must face Islamophobia head-on.” Luger condemns a “current wave of Islamophobia.” There are several problems with Luger’s column. I want to note two. “Islamophobia” is a term of art invented by fanatics to stigmatize their opponents. Speaking as “Minnesota’s chief »

What just happened at MSP?

Featured image We went out to dinner with close friends this past Saturday evening. One of our friends told me the story below, which I asked the friend to reduce to writing in as great detail as was remembered. This is the story. It is an interesting story. It has the additional advantage of being true. I thought readers would find it of interest. My friend writes: On Sunday, October 18, I »

American Sniper on trial: The appeal

Featured image I wrote about Jesse Ventura’s defamation/unjust enrichment lawsuit against the estate of Chris Kyle last year in “American Sniper on trial” and in “American Sniper on trial: The verdict.” The case arises from a couple of pages about Kyle’s close encounter with Ventura at a bar in southern California. Ventura alleged that the story Kyle recounted was false and defamatory and that the success of the book was attributable in »

Minnesota vs. Wisconsin: Does the Progressive Paradise Win?

Featured image Democrats have become fond of contrasting the economies of Minnesota, ruled with an iron fist by the Democratic Farmer Labor party, and Wisconsin, home of Scott Walker’s reforms. President Obama and many other progressives have claimed that Minnesota’s economy is doing better than Wisconsin’s, thereby demonstrating the superiority of liberal policies. In a post at the Center of the American Experiment’s web site, Peter Nelson notes how common this theme »

The Klobuchar kludge, cont’d

Featured image Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar specializes in avoiding outspoken stands on important issues. She looks for opportunities to lead the way on trivialities calculated to garner broad public support, such as her crusade against the threat to life and limb posed by “The crisis of the detergent pod.” Senator Klobuchar is a reliable vote for the Democratic Party line, but she is quiet about it. She doesn’t want to upset anybody. »

A die-in to kill for

Featured image The Twin Cities Marathon went off without a hitch yesterday. The perfect weather didn’t hurt a bit. The Star Tribune reports that Kenyans placed first, second, and third among the men competing in the race. An Ethiopian joined two Kenyans in the top three among the women. A good time was had by all. Black Lives Matter could not be reached for comment. As you may recall, the local Black »

Don’t disrupt this!

Featured image The Twin Cities Marathon is a spectacular event. It is scheduled in early fall, soon enough to catch the trees changing colors. The course is spectacular (map here), taking runners from downtown Minneapolis around Minneapolis’s lakes, down the Mississippi river, across the river into St. Paul, down St. Paul’s most beautiful street, ending at St. Paul’s Capitol Grounds. The Marathon promoters brag that it is “the most beautiful urban marathon »

Disrupt this

Featured image The Black Lives Matters crowd is opening a new front in the war on racism this weekend in St. Paul. The local crew has announced its intent to disrupt the Twin Cities marathon on Sunday. The Star Tribune reports the story on page one in “Black Lives Matters marathon protest stirs fears, spurs backlash.” I hear that in journalism school they teach reporters to cover the the who, what, when, »

Black Income Decline in Minnesota Termed “Disgraceful”

Featured image As I noted here, just-released Census Bureau data show that real median household income declined slightly in 2014, while the poverty rate increased slightly. Median incomes for all racial groups except whites were stable, while white median household income declined by 1.7%. I have seen no comment on this fact; certainly no suggestion that the federal government is responsible for the decline or has pursued policies inimical to the interests »

Evingson’s Fresh Frish

Featured image We are crazy about jazz singer Connie Evingson. Yesterday we attended the second of her two sold-out productions of Fresh Frish at the Jungle Theater in Minneapolis. Following up on Connie’s album Little Did I Dream, the show featured songs from the extensive catalog of St. Paul’s own Dave Frishberg. Frishberg didn’t make the show last night but he accompanied Connie on the recording. Last night Connie called on Jon »

Black Lives Natter in St. Paul

Featured image The local Black Lives Matter movement took to the streets again in St. Paul yesterday. The marchers, some 40 in all, marched by the Governor’s mansion on Summit Avenue to protest Governor Mark Dayton’s disparagement of their State Fair protest this past weekend as “inappropriate.” That’s stern stuff coming from a liberal Democrat; the Black Lives Matter crowd is not used to that kind of disrespect. Indeed, that is precisely »

“Pigs in a blanket”

Featured image The Black Lives Matter protest at the Minnesota State Fair included a frank expression of hatred of the police in the sickening chant “Pigs in a blanket, fry ’em like bacon” (video below). The Star Tribune somehow missed this episode in its coverage of Saturday’s protest on Saturday, hours after the murder of Deputy Sheriff Goforth in Houston. Protest organizer Rashad Turner helpfully explained that the chant is nonviolent; those »

What matters at the State Fair

Featured image What is the point of the Black Lives Matter movement? It represents an assault on law enforcement in the name of racial equity. It mounts a race based attack on the forces of order. It seeks to undermine and overcome democratic politics. Thus the epithet hurled by Ta-Nehisi Coates — a sort of one-man Black Lives Matter gang — in his vile manifesto: “majoritarian pigs.” That’s us. In Minnesota we »

The Ventura factor

Featured image I wrote about Donald Trump’s relationship with Jesse Ventura in “The Trump factor.” I think the relationship is illuminating and deserving of attention in a number of respects, including Trump’s discussion with Ventura late last year regarding the difficulties of a third-party presidential run. Now Ventura has made it clear that he is available and eager to join the Trump ticket as a vice presidential candidate. “I shocked my staff »