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Wednesday, February 14, 2007

The Stadium Swindle Soap Opera: the Saga Continues

Good LTEs in the City Pages:

Flushed by a Female Deity(#)

If the screw-ups of the various parties to the Twins' proposed new stadium ("Squeeze Play," 2/7) cause the project to go down the drain, I will know there is a god and that she is benevolent.

Willard B. Shapira
Minneapolis

Bad Ol' Boys(#)

Their kowtowing to the Twins is old news by now, though we only last month began paying for the stadium our boy commissioners gave Pohlad and company ("Squeeze Play"). So maybe it is timely to wonder if any of those four commissioners have ever seen Hennepin County's five fundamental goals, as provided by outgoing Administrator Sandy Vargas ("Blotter: 3Q," 1/31): create the highest levels of citizen health, support people on paths to self-reliance, ensure the safety of vulnerable children and adults, ensure due process in the county's justice system, and provide mobility for county residents. I can't see funding a stadium to benefit a billionaire team owner within any of them, frankly. With my lack of creativity, clearly I am not commissioner material.

And just one page later, in the story on the Minnesota Department of Corrections dumping short-term convicts onto local jail systems ("Inmate, Inmate, Who's Got the Inmate," 1/31), we have Commissioner Peter McLaughlin complaining that the state is "balancing the budget on the backs of the county." While that has been shown to be manifestly true, he is hardly the most credible source to quote. Or maybe he is: The man obviously has experience shifting costs onto those less able to pay, who do not stand to gain. On the plus side, at least Beth Hawkins did not quote master negotiator Mike ("Anything You Want") Opat.

Thanks for consistently uncovering some of the actions taken by our elected officials in our name.

Robert Frame
Minneapolis

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