Ahh, Minneapolis, Thy Name is Loonville

We enjoyed our 5.5 years in Minneapolis. The city has much to recommend it. If the winter’s weren’t bone-crushing and six months long, it would have been especially appealing. Oh, and there was the depressing fact that a significantly large percentage of the nice folks who live there are bat-guano-insane left wingers. Doncha know.

Exhibit A–A sample ballot from today’s runoff election for Mayor. Behold . . .


Now, you need to know that “Democrat-Farmer-Laborer Party” is what they call Democrats in Minnesota. However, this eccentric, hyphenated brand of Democrat tends to occupy the far leftward side of ideological spectrum. Don’t believe me? Then ponder these three words:

Senator. Al. Franken.

Franken only won the state by 312 votes out of 3 million cast. But Hennepin County, home of Minneapolis, went huge for Franken and put him over the top. In other words, the Democrat Ship in Minneapolis always lists hard to port. Nevertheless . . .

. . . as the ballot above indicates, the DFL is stil much too conservative and/or boring and/or connected to reality for many folks there. As a result, we get candidates like Bill Fiske of the Socialist Workers Party. The SWP is an old-school communist group that traces it’s origins back to the falling out between Leon Trotsky and Joseph Stalin.

“Papa John” Kolstad is a blues singer who doesn’t list a party affiliation (he just identifies as an “Independent Civic Leader”) but he has previously run for office as a “Green Party’ candidate.

I’m particularly bemused by 22-year-old Joey Lombard who appears to be running under the “Is Awesome” banner. I have no information here but I’m guessing “stoner.”

Bob Carney, Jr.’s affiliation is the previously unheard-of “Moderate Progressive Censored” party. Actually, Carney had wanted to declare himself the founding memeber of the “Moderate Progressive Republican” party but had been told he could not use the “R” word in his name–thus the “Censored” bit. So what kind of Republican are you, Bob? Moderate? Or Progressive? Which is it? Clearly NOT conservative. That’s the message that’s coming through for me.

Riding alone at the other end of the crazy train is Bob McGaughey and his “New Dignity Party.” Based on this web site, this party appears to be three old white guys who are cranky about white men being put down all the time. They’re not against other races, they assure us, they just hope to champion a little self-esteem building among white folks.

Oh, but the tangiest lemon in this electoral fruitcake is John Charles Wilson, founder and standard bearer of the Edgartonite National Party. I’ll let the ENP’s own web site copy explain their . . . um . . . distinctives:

The Edgertonite National Party exists to secure political independence for the people of the Midwestern United States and a homeland for the Lauraist religion. We use the term “Nation of Edgerton” to describe the area within a 240-mile radius of Minneapolis, Minnesota. We are a non-traditional Communist party, based on the ideology of Lauraism: the belief that Laura Ingalls Wilder is God, Communism (public ownership of business) is the best form of government, age of consent laws should be repealed, public transit should be returned to the routes, fares, and schedules of 18 September 1970, the Nation of Edgerton should secede from the United States as a Lauraist homeland, and all people, including children, deserve as much personal liberty as possible consistent with public safety and the rights of others. Capitalism is a per se violation of people’s rights by exploitation.

Yep. If you’re a communist pedophile ready to affirm the deity of Little House on the Prairie girl and ride around on buses cheaply–you’ll feel at home in the ENP.

Oh, by the way, founder John Charles Wilson came up with many of his more innovative policy initiatives while a patient in a mental institution or, as he puts it, “the nut house.”

This is What I'm Saying

union-thugsIn a blog post back on April 29th, I wrote:

My first thought upon hearing that the United Auto Workers union is going to end up owning 55% of GM and 39% of Chrysler, with Barack Obama essentially owning most of the rest, was this question:

What happens the next time Ford goes to sit down at the bargaining table with the UAW when the union has a huge vested interest in the success of Ford’s competitors? Does anybody think the union is going to bargain in good faith?

Two days ago we saw this headline: “Ford workers reject contract changes”

DETROIT — Ford Motor Co. workers have overwhelmingly rejected contract changes that would have allowed the automaker to cut labor costs, leaving Ford at a disadvantage to its Detroit rivals as it continues its struggle to return to profitability.

Of course, you didn’t have to be the prophet Daniel to see that one coming.

My "Fruity" Header Art

Long-time readers know I tend to change the header graphic here every week or two. The one currently at the top of this blog is the label from a vintage produce crate. The only change I photoshopped on the label was to replace the words “Georgia Peaches” with “Texas Blather.”  The rest is as it appeared on the original label, which is quite beautiful in my opinion. So, no, I’m not trying to be cute with the “Gay & Keith” and “Gay, Georgia.”

In a similar vein, here’s another vintage produce crate label that surely hits people a little differently today than it did when it was first designed:


Old produce labels are a neglected art form, although many of them are amusingly politically incorrect today.


Here’s a whole collection of beauties from one of my favorite spots in the web.

Loadin' Up the Truck and Movin' Out of Beverly. Hills That Is.


In a great Los Angeles Times op-ed, William Voegeli (The Claremont Institute) points out that lots of people are moving out of California and to places like Texas.

In the piece, headlined: The Golden State isn’t worth it: Our high-benefit/high-tax model no longer works, especially compared with low-tax states like Texas, Voegeli points out:

One way to assess how Americans feel about the different tax and benefit packages the states offer is by examining internal U.S. migration patterns. Between April 1, 2000, and June 30, 2007, an average of 3,247 more people moved out of California than into it every week, according to the Census Bureau. Over the same period, Texas had a net weekly population increase of 1,544 as a result of people moving in from other states. During these years, more generally, 16 of the 17 states with the lowest tax levels had positive “net internal migration,” in the Census Bureau’s language, while 14 of the 17 states with the highest taxes had negative net internal migration.

Voegeli points out that Californians are getting a raw deal for their crushing tax burden:

Today’s public benefits fail that test, as urban scholar Joel Kotkin of NewGeography.com and Chapman University told the Los Angeles Times in March: “Twenty years ago, you could go to Texas, where they had very low taxes, and you would see the difference between there and California. Today, you go to Texas, the roads are no worse, the public schools are not great but are better than or equal to ours, and their universities are good. The bargain between California’s government and the middle class is constantly being renegotiated to the disadvantage of the middle class.”

So, why don’t the tax-paying citizens of California get better benefits in exchange for all the money the state confiscates?:

In what respects, then, does California “excel”? California’s state and local government employees were the best compensated in America, according to the Census Bureau data for 2006. And the latest posting on the website of the California Foundation for Fiscal Responsibility shows 9,223 former civil servants and educators receiving pensions worth more than $100,000 a year from California’s public retirement funds. The “dues” paid by taxpayers in order to belong to Club California purchase benefits that, increasingly, are enjoyed by the staff instead of the members.

Of course, this is precisely the pattern that is now being forced upon the entire nation by the Obama-Pelosi-Reid triumvirate. Union clout is rising and the only jobs being created are well-paid government jobs with cadillac pension packages.

As a result, the smarter folks in California move to low-tax havens of functionality like Texas. The question is, are they smart enough to know that if they bring their Blue State voting habits with them, they will eventually destroy the very thing that made the place appealing?

In Texas we say, “Welcome California economic refugees. Just remember to leave your Blue State voting habits at the California line.”

(Hat tip: Powerline Blog)

Update: Roger Simon comments on the same op-ed.