Skip to content

Commentaries

Feb 12, 2012
Minnesota's yawning racial and ethnic academic achievement gap is among the nation's worst. In nationwide tests of fourth-grade reading, for example, our state's black and Hispanic students lag three years behind their white peers. In recent years, only Washington, D.C., has consistently had a wider gap of this kind.
Jan 30, 2012
The wreck of the Costa Concordia hit a collective nerve as the giant cruise liner capsized off the Tuscan coast on Jan. 13. Minnesotans may have responded with a special shudder. The disaster called to mind another horrific incident involving the demise of an engineering marvel—the collapse of our own Interstate 35W bridge in August 2007.
Jan 30, 2012
Madame Chair, Senator Nelson, and Members of the Committee: My name is Mitch Pearlstein and I’m founder and president of Center of the American Experiment, a conservative and free market think tank up and running in Minneapolis for 22 years now. My previous lives in education have included service on the staffs of University of Minnesota President C. Peter Magrath and Gov. Albert H. Quie, as well as in the research arm of the U.S. Department of Education. My doctorate is in educational administration from the University of Minnesota and my most recent book[i] spends a considerable amount of time on ways in which we might improve the educational achievement of all children, but especially our most disadvantaged young people.
Jan 19, 2012
Army Captain Pete Hegseth, an American Experiment Senior Fellow, recently wrote the following update while in Kabul, Afghanistan and then Manas, Kyrgyzstan on his eventual way back to Minnesota. Welcome home, soldier and great thanks for your brave service and that of your family.
Jan 18, 2012
Minneapolis, MN—Two influential Minnesota-based conservative public policy organizations—Center of the American Experiment and Minnesota Free Market Institute—today announced they are joining forces to form one new organization.
Jan 15, 2012
What was Tom Emmer thinking when he applied for a faculty position at Hamline University? Surely he knows that our campus intelligentsia generally view conservatives like him as knuckle-dragging Neanderthals. At many campuses, Emmer might have made it to the second round of interviews if he had been a disabled "person of color" or confused about his sexuality. But even then he probably couldn't have overcome the cardinal rule of campus "diversity" -- diversity of political views will not be tolerated. Given his rejection by Hamline (after he thought he had a job), Emmer might be pleased to know that some aspiring conservative faculty members who are victims of political discrimination are gaining new traction through the courts.
Jan 1, 2012
As we turn the calendar's last page, tradition dictates that we look back at the year's major themes and events and preview "emerging trends" in the year ahead. But what if we were to focus instead on polishing the lens through which we view the events slipping by us, and the unknown challenges that await? In 2012, our project could be to renew the centrality in our lives of the virtue of hope.
Dec 27, 2011
So now it’s Theodore Roosevelt’s turn. One wonders how many other presidents our current president will channel before he’s through. Let’s see, we’ve already had Barack Obama as Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, and John Kennedy. He’s either presented himself or been presented as our redeemer president (Lincoln), our Ivy League scholar president (Wilson), our he-saved-us-from-economic collapse president (FDR), and our youthful celebrity president (JFK). Why, President Obama has even tried to draw parallels to a not-so-youthful celebrity president by the name of Reagan.
Dec 21, 2011
C. Peter Magrath, who served as president of the University of Minnesota from 1974 to 1984, previously served two years as president of Binghamton University in Upstate New York. Without getting into the long and winding story, he’s finishing off his second stint as president there later this month—just a short of 40 years after he arrived the first time. The fact that I worked for him at both institutions and that he’s a great friend and mentor is personally important, albeit not vital to this story, which has to do with how public universities have come to elect presidents. Or, more precisely, it’s about the constrained pools from which presidents get picked.