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  • Rural angst more real than Trump
    With all the fatal flaws dragging down Donald Trump, he still has some appeal in rural areas of Minnesota. Some may say his supporters have the same fatal flaws — they are narrow-minded, divisive hicks who want to turn back the clock.
  • Calm down: Whatever happens in the election won’t be catastrophic
    “Basically, Trump is everything wrong with America’s culture, and Hillary is everything wrong with our government,” Janae Petitjean, 19, a North Carolina community college student who will be voting for the first time this year, told the Boston Globe recently. 
  • Firefighters are more than just ordinary volunteers in community
    During a presentation on fire safety to elementary school students who were bused to the local fire hall this week during National Fire Prevention Week, a volunteer firefighter had to remind them that the firefighters don’t live on the premises. That fire halls always house firefighters may be the perception of kids, and many adults, too, due to television, but it’s not the norm. The National Fire Protection Association reports that 69 percent of firefighters in the United States are volunteers.
  • Dysfunction of national politics creeping up in local campaigns
    The dysfunction of national politics is creeping into all corners of Minnesota as big spending and negative campaigning are making an impact on the race for House District 28B, which includes all of Fillmore and Houston counties. It’s a trend that has been building over the last few elections, but seems to have taken a significant step forward this year.
  • Don’t worry, be happy: You’re living in Minnesota
    Minnesota is the second happiest state in America, behind top state Utah and ahead of third place North Dakota, according to an analysis by WalletHub, a personal finance site. Although there are all sorts of rankings out there, this one has a lot of data and scientific analysis to support its findings, making it more than just a novelty to share on social media.
  • Have you read the Constitution?
    Sept. 17 to 23 is Constitution Week, a time to commemorate America’s most important document. The resolution, petitioned by the Daughters of the American Revolution, was adopted by Congress and signed into law in 1956 by President Dwight D. Eisenhower.
  • House District 26B’s representative continuously demonstrates his lack of leadership and inability to represent his constituents.
  • Connection strengthened on a  26.2 mile journey in South Dakota
    As I was making my way through the early part of a marathon in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Sunday morning, a man ran up next to me and asked me if I was Dave Phillips from Spring Valley. As I confirmed my identity to a man I didn’t recognize, my brain was quickly searching its sometimes forgetful resources trying to figure out how he knew me. Was he a running acquaintance from Rochester, someone I talked to at one of my newspaper offices or someone I met briefly at a local gathering?
  • Still hope for special session?
    As a follow-up to last week’s column, the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce is still holding out hope, or at least trying to put some pressure on the possibility, that state leaders will come to an agreement on holding a special session to deal with the issues — tax relief, bonding and comprehensive transportation funding — that were left unresolved last session. 

Are politics today still able to meet the challenges our country is facing?


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