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Thursday, April 06, 2017

SCHMID: LOOKING BACK FROM THE LEFT COAST - APRIL 5, 2017

 

CHICKENS COME HOME TO ROOST The DAPL protests were a magnet for certain attention-seeking celebrities. Actress Shailene Woodley was one. She has pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and admitted to acting in a manner with “intent to harass, annoy or alarm another person.”

KEEPING SCORE A Star Tribune article identified winners and losers from the DAPL protests. Energy Transfer Partners (the owner) prevailed, but may have lost a half billion dollars doing so. Out-of-state protesters suffered a setback -- 600 of them are still being processed in state courts. The Standing Rock Sioux experienced divisive financial and political losses. The state of ND is out $40 million dealing with the protests, but will feel better when it begins collecting $110 million a year in taxes from the pipeline.

LATE OIL NEWS The Three Affiliated Tribes threaten to pull out of ND oil tax agreements if their share is not increased . . . Reuters reports the Dakota Access Pipeline will increase ND oil production 10 percent.

WOMEN SKATE AWAY “Our institutions of higher education are not intended to be host bodies for sports programs.” -- The response of columnist Rob Port to news that UND was dropping women’s hockey and all swimming programs. He reported the women’s hockey program lost $1.9 million a year.

REFUGEES A GF Herald article detailed different levels of benefits offered to refugees in ND. Federal money gives the refugees a start, but then they are supported by local welfare systems. The article identified state and county programs such as TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) and SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) under which refugees receive as much as 7 percent of total statewide benefits. The article was background for a statewide debate about cost and benefits of refugees.

“RECESSIONS IN FARM INCOME typically bottomed out in their third year (This is the third year of our current ag-recession).” -- Mike Rosmann, a Harlan, Iowa, psychologist and farmer. He said, "Farming is going through an adjustment phase." He predicted 2017 will be a “turnaround” year, but there will be casualties among poorly capitalized producers.

THEY WANT RESPECT Some people think President Trump gets his support from closet racists and single-issue extremists. GF Herald columnist Tom Dennis disagreed. He believes Trump’s supporters have two widespread concerns: Political correctness (that considers conservatives ignorant, stupid and evil) and the lack of good jobs with benefits (the foundation of everything else).

CRAIG COBB has a reputation in ND as a white supremacist. He has been run out of several communities, jailed, harassed and two of his properties have been burned. Forum columnist Mike McFeely wondered what this is really about and concluded, “He is, however, really good at getting attention for himself, which I’m starting to think is the entire point of this exercise.”

DR. TOM AMBERRY (94), a podiatrist who died last week in Long Beach, California, had a peculiar retirement hobby. He shot basketball free throws -- 500 a day. The 6 feet 7 inches tall Grand Forks native and former UND center holds the world record for consecutive free throws -- 2,750 in a row. The feat took 12 hours.

LITTLE HOUSE OF HORRORS A Bismarck oral surgeon was suspended for “pulling wrong teeth, starting procedures before sedation and angrily ripping out stitches.” Dr. Mansureh Iravani had previously been suspended for crashing her car after using meth.

IS THERE ANOTHER DETECTION METHOD? Almost weekly ND newspapers tell of a traffic stops that discover large amounts of illegal drugs. This week a man from California’s Emerald Triangle was found near Jamestown with $100,000 of marijuana. What about the majority of drug runners smart enough to drive sanely? There must be millions of dollars of undetected illegal drugs rolling down I-94.

THE BISMARCK-MANDAN RAILROAD BRIDGE was a major factor in the development of western ND, but is nearing the end of its useful life. BNSF Railroad is planning a replacement for the 1882 bridge, which still carries 14-16 trains every day. The bridge’s construction was considered an important feat in railroad history.

BOOSTERISM A Forum headline read “NDSU NURSING PROGRAM HIGHLY RANKED.” Then we learned what that meant. The NDSU graduate nursing program was ranked 38th out of 186 schools by U.S News & World Report.

WINS ACADEMIC LOTTERY Anna Lehrke, a high school student in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota, is one-fourth Ojibwe. What is that worth? In her case, a full 6-year scholarship to study pharmacy at NDSU under its Cultural Diversity program.

BOB DYLAN “Is there any quality people have there that you don't find elsewhere?" -- Question about the Duluth area from an interview with Bob Dylan. He replied: “Indian country, Ojibwe, Chippewa, Lakota, birch trees, open pit mines, bears and wolves — the air is raw. ... It's a rugged environment — people lead simple lives, but they lead simple lives in other parts of the country, too. People are pretty much the same wherever you go." Dylan will go to Sweden this weekend to accept the Nobel Literature Prize. Hope they understand him more clearly than we do.

TALL TREES The ND Forest Service identifies the biggest trees for 75 species in the state -- a third are in Fargo. The tallest tree in Fargo is an 89-foot silver maple. The state’s tallest tree is a 115-foot cottonwood in Ransom County (Lisbon).

DAKTOIDS Fargo-Moorhead continued steady population growth in 2016, while the formerly “red hot” Oil Patch cities of Dickinson, Minot and Williston all showed declines. However, this year, jobs are beginning to return to the Oil Patch . . . ND has a physician shortage compared to the region and the nation -- the shortage is expected to grow worse . . . Sears, which has a long history in ND, announced it may not make it through the year . . . Gov. Doug Burgum signed a controversial bill allowing qualified people to carry a concealed firearm without a permit.

 

TREASURE ISLAND - COINS AND PRECIOUS METALS

 

 

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