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Greater Minnesota Is Rejecting Liberalism


Today's Star Tribune carries two articles that echo what we have been saying for a long time: liberal policies have little appeal for small-town and rural voters. The first article is headlined, After two terms of Dayton, DFL losing grip on voters outside Twin Cities. From Dayton’s drive for environmental policies disliked by some farmers and mining advocates, to his stewardship of a state health insurance system that has struggled to function in many rural counties, to his blunt remarks on polarizing issues like racial bias in policing, immigration and transgender rights, the governor’s liberal bearing on a range of...

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Minnesota, Land of 10,000 Lakes and One Shrimp Farm?

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Minnesota has lots of water, but all of it is fresh. Shrimp live in salt water, of which Minnesota has none. So the state has never been associated with shrimp, or shrimp production. Until now. As Tom Steward noted a couple of weeks ago, legislation is wending its way through Minnesota's House and Senate that would subsidize shrimp production facilities in the state. The subsidy would be 69 cents per pound of shrimp; in addition, shrimp production facilities would be exempt from sales and use taxes. It's no secret what is going on: a businessman near Marshall wants to grow shrimp,...

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A city-country mice divide in Minnesota? We don’t see it that way

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Less government, more freedom is good for rural and urban Minnesota. This op-ed appeared in the Star Tribune March 20, 2017. In “Bridging our city mouse/country mouse divide” (March 5), Dane Smith and Vernae Hasbargen of the liberal policy group Growth & Justice write that they “have witnessed far too much warfare between metro and rural mice. We are worried that it’s getting worse.” Smith and Hasbargen see a cultural divide between urban and rural Minnesotans. They diagnose “metro condescension” in the cities and “rural resentment” in Greater Minnesota. Some metropolitan progressives think “rural people are gullible hayseeds,” while some rural voters have...

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The Truly Celestial Captain Kirk


I’ve been asked to speak later this month at the Roseville Library about the history of American conservatism from Bill Buckley to Donald Trump or thereabouts.  When I mentioned to my host some of the scholars and other writers I’d be referring to she asked, “What about Russell Kirk?”  To which I said (already sheepishly) I had left him off the list because I had never warmed up to him, not that I had ever given myself an adequate chance to do so. It was at that point I realized I better heat up pretty fast as she seemed rightfully amazed...

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Basic Differences Between Left and Right


Popular nationwide talk radio host Dennis Prager has published a very handy Guide to Basic Differences Between Left and Right.  Here are the highlights: Economic Goal Left: equality Right: prosperity   Most Important Trait to Cultivate in a Child Left: self-esteem Right: self-control   Primary Source of Crime Left: poverty, racism and other societal flaws Right: the criminal's malfunctioning conscience   American Exceptionalism Left: chauvinistic doctrine Right: historical reality   Greatest Threat to the World Left: environmental catastrophe (currently global warming) Right: evil (currently radical Islamist violence)   Primary Reason for Lack of Peace in Middle East Left: Israeli settlements in the West Bank Right: Palestinian, Arab and Muslim denial of Jewish state's right to exist   Purpose of Art Left: challenge status quo and bourgeois...

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I Am Thankful for Many Things: Center Finishes Best Year Yet!


    Dear Friends, Thanks to friends like you the Center is finishing our best year yet!  But we both know the stakes are high and there's much more work to be done, so the CAE Board has agreed to match contributions made by December 31 so American Experiment can begin 2017 in a strong financial position and bring our message of policy solutions to every corner of Minnesota. Therefore, I need to ask you to consider making (in the next couple of days) the most generous tax-deductible gift you can to the Center. I Am Thankful for Many Things 1. Especially for our small but dedicated staff who work long hours to create a new Minnesota civic culture where conservative and free market...

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Will Trump treat liberals kinder than liberals have treated conservatives? Columnist dishes liberals a pretty good polemic.


In the wake of the Trump election, First Things columnist Pete Spiliakos gives some well-deserved pushback to fear-stricken left-wing college students and social-liberal activists.  After listing a few of his “legitimate” concerns about Trump, he delivers a well written polemic claiming “fear of Trump is fear that what they would have done with power now will be done unto them.”  In any case, after the past eight years and this turbulent election, here’s a few paragraphs that conservatives are sure to enjoy: On many of the social issues, Trump is the best that social liberals can reasonably hope for from the GOP....

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Steven Hayward’s Spot-On Analysis of the Challenges Ahead

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For a while now my favorite writer has been Power Line contributor Steven Hayward, scholar, energy and Reagan expert, and happy conservative warrior.  Just before the election he hit the nail on the head with an impressive survey of the political crisis our nation and the Republicans face in a timely Weekly Standard piece. Here Hayward gets the clever paragraph of the month award: Win or lose, [Trump] has divided and may yet shatter the conservative movement, a fact that was evident before the Access Hollywood tape gave us a TMI moment barely suitable for TMZ. Who could have foreseen that the Great Pumpkin...

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Nearly Twice As Many Work In Government As In Manufacturing


Terence Jeffrey reports the latest data: The United States lost 9,000 manufacturing jobs in October while gaining 19,000 jobs in government, according to data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Government employment grew from 22,216,000 in September to 22,235,000 in October, according to BLS, while manufacturing jobs dropped from 12,267,000 to 12,258,000. This chart plots the number of manufacturing employees against the number of government employees: No wonder economic growth has slowed to a crawl! Of course, the decline in manufacturing jobs doesn't necessarily mean a decline in manufacturing. On the contrary, the value of goods made in America is higher than ever....

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Welcome, the Antonin Scalia Law School


[caption id="attachment_5024" align="alignleft" width="280"] Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas, and Stephen Breyer, right, listen to Elena Kagan during the dedication of the Antonin Scalia Law School, October 6, 2016.[/caption] In a fitting tribute to the late Supreme Court justice, the George Mason University law school will be renamed the Antonin Scalia Law School thanks to an anonymous donor and the Charles Koch Foundation donating $30 million to the school.  The law school, known for its libertarian and conservative orientation, has done well since its founding in 1979, consistently placing in the top tier of the 50 top law schools since 2001.  The...

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