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 Response Page - Lori Sturdivant  Interview -      

These comments are responses to the questions listed below,
which were generated in regard to the
Lori Sturdivant Interview of

The Questions:

1.  Are you, like Sturdevant, bullish on Minnesota's future?

_32.6 %___yes

_34.8 %___qualified yes

_23.9 %___no

_ 8.7 %___qualified no

2.  Is the Internet likely to play a significantly greater role in fundraising and campaigning in the 2010 Minnesota Governor's race than ever before?

_64.4 %___yes

_33.3 %___qualified yes

_ 2.2 %___no

_ 0.0 %___qualified no

3.  Should more emphasis be made on utilizing volunteers in helping deliver public services in Minnesota? 

_44.4 %___yes

_26.7 %___qualified yes

_20.0 %___no

_  8.9 %___qualified no

Eric Schubert

When the Civic Caucus looks at "big issues," I'm hoping that you will include aging.  It impacts everything from state budgets to community planning to the workforce to volunteerism and beyond.  If you'd like someone to talk about it, Kathryn Roberts and I could come by.

1.  I am bullish if we have more creativity combined with more collaborative leadership and desire to collectively achieve.  "No new taxes" is not collaboration, it is not creativity, nor is it sustainable in an ultra-competitive global world. No new taxes and the line it has drawn is a complete cop out; just as "all new spending" is a cop out.  The issues are far too big, we're far too small of a population in too cold of a place, and the world is moving much too fast for Minnesota to in-fight, rest on history and not be innovating like crazy with a laser-like focus on moving this state measurably and thoughtfully forward.

2. It will for the person who wins. 

3.  Yes.  But to be successful in that we also have to have people in the bully pulpit who can inspire and motivate people to join a cause larger than themselves - the future of Minnesota.  Minnesota has taken the last 8-12 years off.  And we're paying the price by a fragmented, weakened society at a time we need all muscles flexing.

Tom Swain 

Question 1:  Skeptical

Question 2: Yes

Question 3:  I don’t know

Donna Schmitt

Question 1:  I think Minnesota can have a big impact on the future of this nation.  We are a state of  people who desire to see the best in people.  We are optimistic, how else could we live through a cold winter?  It is only because we know spring will come.  We have an outstanding pool of volunteers.  We have a history of people who are hard workers, and new ethnic groups that are calling Minnesota home also prove that they pride themselves in working hard to make a living.

Question 2:  There is no doubt that the internet will determine the winner in the coming election.  No matter what party you represent, the Obama campaign has 'set the bar' for any future elections.  All parties have seen how campaigns can be won or lost on the merits of their internet savvy.  But it also proves again, that races are also won by 'looks'.  How young a candidate looks compared to his opponent could win or lose an election. 

It also means that any little 'flub' will be on the internet in less than an hour and up on YouTube for eternity!  YouTube has to be used by any campaign to get its own message out.  Getting people to give you email addresses and cell phone numbers will help any campaign.  Obama's campaign was the master of everything from controlling the news stories to Twittering!

Question 3:  We are dependent on volunteers throughout many public venues.  Volunteers help read books to students in libraries and schools.  Volunteers assist police at special events through the police reserve program. (Columbia Heights uses them in many situations.)  Many cities or communities still have volunteer firefighters.  Columbia Heights utilizes a youth volunteer program in their fire department and has been able to mentor young people and seen many of those youth grow up and become firefighters or police officers.  Volunteers sit on city commissions.  Volunteers help clean up our highways several times a year.  Cities, such as Minneapolis, are asking citizens to adopt an abandoned home by helping to cut grass, pick up garbage and just watch for criminal activity.  Columbia Heights is even looking at utilizing volunteers to supervise activities in their new community gym.  Because of budget cuts, we are asking other groups to help with sprucing up our local playgrounds and ball fields and have several groups come forward to help.  Every year we have a number of volunteers who care for our city flowerbeds.

So when you ask if we should have citizens assist in public services, they already are.  Can they do more?  Definitely yes!  We have not even reached our potential.  People do want their communities to be inviting to others and they want their communities to look good.  The best way to do that in these times is to utilize local youth, civic and faith groups to fill in needs. 

We have many needs and we have many people that could be helping but they may not know where to start.  We also have a number of people who are spending days without work and to fill in that time between looking and waiting for an interview they could be volunteering a few hours a week to help give them some purpose through these tough times.  Websites like

can connect people with needs to those who can help fill those needs.  Cities can take the same idea and do things on a very local level.  If the city decides it needs something in spite of budget cuts, get the word out and if it is really worthwhile, volunteers should come forward to fill those needs. 

Carolyn Ring (yes) (yes) (yes)

Bert Press (no) (no) (yes)

Kent Eklund

Question 1:  I am more concerned than bullish.  We still have not solved the educational issue for our next generation of workers.  I worry that our public sector finds expenditures only as expenses and not investments.  Without a people resource, we really have no competitive advantage 

Question 2: Yes 

Question 3:  You should visit with LaRhae Knatterud of DHS.  She has done a lot of thinking about this.  The positioning of volunteers in the public delivery of services is a huge opportunity and an equally huge set of issues.

Don Fraser

Question 1: Much turns on the outcome of the next governor's race.

Question 2: Yes - especially for fundraising, and communicating  info about meetings. But candidates still need direct exposure in winning voter support.

Question 3: As much as possible, but not a substitute for services that are basic and needed. Volunteer help should be supplementary.

Bob White (conditionally, yes; a short-horned bull) (yes) (yes)

Steve Alderson

Question 1:   Yes.

Question 2:  Only because folks don't read the paper or news magazines.  It bothers me if we get bad journalism distributed by supposedly convenient technology.  If we cannot support good reporting we will pay the price.  From what I read on the internet that is a problem. 

Question 3:   Not necessarily.  After all volunteering does not create the jobs which everyone says we need. One of my pet peeves is that professional sports does not create lower level jobs because volunteers man the food booths at the ball parks.  The price collected for items goes disproportionately to the owner of the sports arena and not to those who provide the service.  I am convinced that the greed of those who control economic opportunity in our society often works to the dis-benefit of society as a whole.  The more we rely on volunteers the less we value fair return for service rendered.

Gordy Jacobson

Question 1: Maybe - Minnesota is a changed state/environment.  Some businessw entities will prevail, others will die.  Quality of education needs serious review.

Question 2:  yes

Question 3: I keep harping on this same issue.   We have money to spend worldwide and lack money for our needs.  We who have been around a while continue to be amazed at government spending and asking us for endless fees in addition to high taxes and volunteering.  I volunteer because I want to, not to substitute for state and federal responsibilities.

Robert J. Brown

The change in the management of our leading businesses from local people who developed them and had a commitment to the community to professional managers who do not have the sense of commitment to our state is a problem and it has to be dealt with in new creative ways.

The decline in the print media will mean we will not have thoughtful people Like Lori, Steve Dornfeld, Dane Smith and others being employed and given the opportunity to comment with fairness and some depth to help the citizens  understand major policy issues.

Question 1: yes

Question 2: certainly

Question 3:   absolutely

Charles Lutz (yes) (yes) (yes)

Paul Hauge

Question 1: yes, but we need to fund required services even though it may require additional taxes

Question 2: yes

Question 3: yes But we must find a way to recruit knowledgeable volunteers.

Arvonne Fraser

Question 1:  No.  Unless we beef up education and look/demand more from state government for investment in infrastructure, including education, I worry.

Question 2:  Yes, but with older population and greater Minnesota not so computer-friendly candidates will still have to travel, use local media--radio and TV--and get out and meet voters.  Governors' races are different from presidential.  Look what happened in Virginia this week.  The less well-known, less financed won.

Question 3:   No.  Volunteers should stick to helping non-profits and become more active in politics and community organizing.  We have to accept we will have to pay taxes for decent public services.

Ann Berget

Question 1:  No. It's a nice thing to say, but where is the evidence?

Question 2:  Yes, although I wonder how much greater is "greater"? It already plays a very big role. An interesting consequence of this change could be a reduction in the role played by older voters, many of whom have not adopted newer technologies for these activities. Especially interesting at a time where these voters represent such a large share of the population and use of public funds (health care, social security).

Question 3:    No, this is not a stable way of delivering services. Volunteers are not accountable to the public. Public services are usually essential services and are paid for with public dollars. We cannot afford to depend on the good will of volunteers to provide essential services.

David Dillon (10) (8) (8)

Terry Stone

Lori has an editorial writer’s skill and awareness for presenting political neutrality.  Only the occasional slip makes her political subtext obvious to the attentive policy wonk.  “We need to get past the notion that government is the problem, and get good, efficient government.”  This makes Lori the princess of paradox; the queen of the quintessential oxymoron; the matron of the mutually exclusive.

Question 1:  Reality and propaganda are increasingly blurred in Minnesota. Our state is buying into climate change along with other environmental and social philosophies that are both imported and owned by special interests. Much of this junk science is intellectually entertaining, but financially unsustainable as government policy. California provides a budgetary sneak preview of the fruits of quaint environmentalism and naďve social policy. That guy on the California quarter is not Johnny Apple Seed; it’s the founder of the Sierra Club.

To make matters worse, we are almost certainly seeing the end of a period of devolution in federalism that began about 1995 when the states took back control of their highway speed limits after 21 years of federal mandates. About the same time, President Clinton signed a bill that gave responsibility for welfare to the states.  Contemporaneously, a number of Supreme Court rulings favored the authority of the states. The states have taken a firm lead in the control of illegal immigration enforcement.

A countercurrent toward federal control has been developing since the Bush Administration solidified federal authority over national security with the Patriot Act and over education with No Child Left Behind. The Clean Water Act of 1972, as amended, has been a consistent and strong countercurrent toward federal control of all navigable water. Jim Oberstar’s Clean Water Restoration Act would exponentially expand federal control to mean all water and everything that affects all water. The Obama Administration’s proposals for cap and trade schemes significantly provide unfettered federal dominance over climate trends.

In view of the vast departure from the culture of independence that made Minnesota what it is, it strikes me that only a Minnesotan well left of center can be bullish on the future of any state. As Governor Pawlenty stated on national television June 4th, 2009, “Minnesota just doesn’t have the look and feel of the state we knew and loved.” Pawlenty is an optimist.

Question 2:  Yes.  There is no doubt.

Question 3: I assume that the public services referenced are neither public safety nor highway maintenance. Welfare is an area where volunteers have delivered meaningful, if uneven, public services at local, state, national and international levels.

My experience with church and civic groups involved in helping the needy is that these groups are typically more emotionally engaged with the recipients of the services. This sets up the individual volunteers, and the organizations involved, for exploitation by a small, expensive and tenacious subclass of individuals who have honed the milking of the system to an art form.

If government is an incompetent and inefficient conveyor of services, it aspires, at least, be to an equal opportunity offender. It is more colorblind and politically equalitarian than, say, an ACORN or a Hamas chapter.

Bill Hamm (yes) (yes) (yes)

I must say I was quite impressed with that interview and her suggestion for what the civic caucus should do until it grows up.

1. Yes if we look to the past to see what worked and why. Then we can begin to unwind this central planning model we have fallen into and put local citizens back in control of creating more positive outcomes based on ownership and pride.

2. Yes, but I predict advertising revenues won't decrease.

3. Yes again, especially where children are concerned but not under the thumb of social services feminist overtones.

David Detert

Question 1: For Minnesota’s future to be positive means putting to rest the social issues which are the basis for the partisan politics, true reform in education(year round school) and health care reform where the state guarantees everyone basic health care but plays a very limited role in expensive high tech health care. 

Question 2: Yes

Question 3: No.  Ms Sturdevant mentioned that one use of volunteers would be attending to the many children who do not receive proper care and supervision.  Volunteers are not a substitute for asking why any child in these times is not planned for or born out of wedlock.  In 2009 there isn’t any excuse for this to be happening and is destroying the next generation.  No amount of volunteers will fix this.  The sexual revolution of the last 40 years has been based on the right of women to control their own bodies.  I support this change but we need to hold women responsible for their actions just as we do men.

Ray Schmitz

Question 1: Yes generally, but the challenges of energy and lack of effective political leadership is concerning.
Question 2: Yes, but the issue is lack of balance, sources such as the MN Post news have to mature.
Question 3: That is difficult, speaking as a volunteer government does not do a good job with volunteers, there is a lack of confidence that goes both ways.
Wayne Jennings

Question 1:  Yes, but not with the current governor's lack of leadership for education, health and business. We have great resources but need forward thinking and imaginative legislators working in a less partisan matter.

Question 2:  I am sure that it will as it has with the recent presidential campaign. I would like to see the availability of videos of candidates on various issues via the Internet.

Question 3:   Yes, we have barely scratched the surface of volunteerism. One example: every student in the K-12 system is itching to be useful and productive. It's a tremendous force for making better schools and communities.

Bright Dornblaser

Question 1:  Doubtful.  Do not see the leadership from govenment or the business community; some from foundations and of course the CL.  Partisanship, special interests vs. a culture and processes to reach agreement on the common goods, on the facts about the impact of taxes on our economy, on how to restructure to reduce the large state expenditures, on the common values

Question 2: Yes if somehow people can be drawn to position papers and explanation about them vs. repetitive sound bites in the internet medium.  Obama had good position papers and people were drawn to look at them, because of interest in him.  Can that be replicated?

Question 3:  It should be a "no brainer".  But it needs imaginative leadership from both the public and private leadership to develop incentives and processes to make it really feasible and meaningful.

Bob Green

Question 1: I am bullish on Minnesota's future- provided we create a business friendly climate which includes LOWER taxes and fewer regulations for business.  If Sturdevant's current ideas are anything like the liberal ideas she usually espouses, she would have a socialist utopia that will strangle business and drive it out of our state.  I could write you an entire essay on this one.  I dispute the claim that Sturdevant's reporting is objective.

Question 3:   Yes.  Volunteers probably won't work with everything but the concept would reduce taxes provided the program is administered by a politically neutral government.

Jan Hively (no) (yes) (yes)

Frankly, I prefer the 1 to 10.  I have difficulty in answering Yes or No to anything.  It's always "Yes, but" or "No, but".  Gene Cohen's book, "The Mature Mind" explains that our thinking is more complex now that we are using both hemispheres (a shift that occurs in midlife).  Maybe that explains my "shades of grey" attitude.

Question 3: Yes, but only on terms that are acceptable to boomer volunteers.  Boomers want to do meaningful work, paid or unpaid, that matches their interests and skills and "gives back" to the community.  They prefer project-based volunteering and are not likely to show up for a regular weekly schedule because they want to keep their schedules flexible.   Also, they want some incentives -- perhaps a stipend or scholarship, or at least money to cover expenses -- contractual relationships -- opportunities for teamwork -- and the same respect provided to regular employees.  Many boomers will never see "retirement" because they have no savings and will need to continue to earn enough to supplement SS and purchase supplementary health care.  We need to find the middle ground -- part-time employment, stipended volunteer jobs, etc. 

Al Quie

Question 1: No, at- risk children need to be motivated to learn; the corporate tax needs to be reduced (better would be to eliminate it); need less redundancy in state regulation.

Question 2:  Probably, but most of the potential candidates will not know how to use it effectively

Question 3: Absolutely!

Rick Bishop

Question 1:  Given Minnesota's history, yes!  However, there needs to be consistency and leadership that is authentic and not self-serving.  We need some good old prairie populism and vision to keep moving into a prosperous future.


Question 2: It appears that may happen as it has happened nationally.


Question 3:  It is an idea however, everything costs something and people need to eat.

Fred Zimmerman

Question 1:  No!  Minnesota is resting upon economic laurels which no longer exist. The State must improve its efficiency, lower its cost, and more effectively manage its education system so that students learn what students in other countries are learning. Education in Minnesota is a giant rip-off.

Ms. Sturdevant decries the decline of corporate leadership, and justifiably so. However, Minnesota has lost its substantial technical edge in computer. Honeywell has been acquired by a less capable company. Northwest Airlines was plundered by incompetent financial jugglers with neither experience nor money. Our once strong agricultural equipment businesses are mostly gone. Other companies have moved much production out of Minnesota because of costs. The two largest banks have undergone mergers, poor judgment, and ill-guided speculation. Yes, we have a decline in corporate leadership -- perhaps because we have fewer corporations.

Question 2: I suppose, but shouldn't we be able to find higher quality candidates who emerge because of solid character and relevant abilities rather than internet fundraising prowess?

Question 3:  Why? We pay an arm and a leg for state and public services -- much more per capita than Wisconsin, Indiana, Iowa, the Dakotas, and many other states.  What we get for these very high costs is early retirement for public employees, lucrative pensions, and mediocre performance. We do not need more volunteers, even though their efforts can be useful. What we need is a dramatic overhaul of how Minnesota delivers public services -- in education, social services, and other areas. Minnesota has an enormous managerial gap -- not a staffing gap.

The Minneapolis Community Development operates out of a refurbished flour mill with a newly minted indoor waterfall -- no doubt at enormous cost. These nice people do seem to want to attract manufacturers to Minneapolis, but it seems doubtful that either the waterfall or the new landscaping for the incinerator will provide a sufficient draw to attract any industry. There are many other examples of both Minnesota's staffing and Minnesota's proceeds being misspent.

Joe Mansky

Question 1:  Ask me this question again in January 2011. I think the upcoming election for governor could be a watershed event. As Lori noted, this state has been on the wane in recent years, but that need not be our future. Leadership and vision is key – that’s why we have the political parties. Let’s see if they – and the voters – are up to the challenge.

Question 2:  Yes, it’s a game changer.

Question 3:   Maybe and to get citizens to do more of the work of government themselves.

Robert A. Freeman

HealthPartners (my employer) is a member of LifeSciences Alley, which is a trade group representing many of the bio-tech, pharmaceutical and device companies in the upper Midwest, one of the most important and innovative areas of our economy.  If the Civic Caucus is still interested in having a session on the future of bio-tech, I would strongly recommend that you contact Phil Griffin (who represents LifeScience Alley) and Frank Jaskulke (who staffs the organization) to find someone who has unique expertise in this area of public policy and can come in to talk with you.  I have also copied both these gentlemen on the email.

Donald H. Anderson

Question 1: Yes, to a certain extent. Namely, can we get over this extreme partisanship that exists currently. 

Question 2:  Probably, although there still are a lot of people that don't have internet access or savvy.

Question 3:   Definitely, if we can get the baby boomer generation to volunteer.

Pat Lowther (yes) (yes) (no)

Question 3:  Volunteers are tapped out.  Volunteers come from the 20% of the population who are active contributors to society, helping everything to operate from churches to non-profits.  Government cannot push on to this group obligations that the entire society should rightfully shoulder.

Ed Dirkswager

Question 1:  Guardedly, yes


Question 2: Yes

Question 3: There needs to be much greater emphasis on community groups, religious and otherwise, not just on "volunteers". In fact the use of the term volunteer does not do justice to the concept of an emphasis on groups that form because of a community of interest.

Mark Ritchie

 Wow, this must have been fun!

Chuck Slocum (yes) (yes) (yes)

Shirley Heaton

Question 1:  How can one from any state in the union not be? But it's the volunteerism that concerns me. As an active, 80-year-old retiree, living in a retirement community, there is need to re-evaluate the training and productive use of volunteers in areas not considered before; e.g. public services in addition to hospitals; mentoring, in addition to educational programs. In our days in the work world, we were not all teachers or nurses' aides. I hate to think we have to wait until the retiring 'Baby Boomers' come aboard to put a new 'spin' on the wonderful world of volunteerism for those beyond 65 or 70.

Question 2:  I suggest waiting for a report from some PhD genius subsequent to his/her evaluation of Obama's election campaign to answer this query.

David Broden (yes) (yes) (yes)

Question 1: Bullish because serious people and organizations are seeking to find solutions and recommendations for the future of Minnesota. The underlying Minnesota strength remains and the need is to bring that energy back to the top and to turn the ideas into action. The various dialogues in process and the 2010 Governor's race set an appropriate stage to make the vision clearly and to get public endorsement. 

Question 2:  Yes, and appropriately. It is incumbent on the candidates, the parties, and the various media in the state to make this happen in a way that encourage all citizens to become engaged in the process and the dialogue.

Question 3:   Yes--but with the following comment--the term volunteer is overused and is often not accepted--there is a definite need to change the reference to mentoring or some other key word. With the expanding number of baby boomer retirees and other available to mentor and or participate there needs to be a focus on this approach by both government and industry with appropriate incentives. 

Lyall Schwarzkopf

Question 1:  I am not as bullish as Sturdevant, but I am still positive about Minnesota 

Question 2: Yes

Question 3: No, but volunteers are important to make non profit and other organizations work well.  Many retired citizens are ready to volunteer.

Kathleen Anderson

1.  I am bullish on Minnesota's future as well as in the future of the U.S.  I wonder, though, if we haven't been living in a bubble for the last decade or two.  I think perhaps the future for all of us will be a little more pragmatic, a little closer to reality.

2.  Look at how the Obama campaign used the internet and used it successfully.  Pandora's box is open and the Internet is a great tool.

3.  It seems as though there is a great big pool of possible volunteer workers in our retired population.  How do we connect them to where they are needed?

John Nowicki

Question 1:  Yes

Question 2:  Yes

Question 3:  As long as the participants are independent of religious,  and political associations.

Roy Thompson

Question 1:  No.  Our natural resources may still be there but utilization, management and vision has changed dramatically.  Education provided the basis for continued development, world wide education has advance while MN has been more static.

Question 2: probably.

Question 3:  Yes, but a committee won't help.  There has to be a population change in attitude toward community betterment.

Pat Davies

Question 1:  Absolutely

Question 2:  Already is doing so - i.e. see Entenza, Ritchie,  Walz,  house caucus!_Will certainly build on this - with the Obama operation as a model.

Question 3:  Instead of flooding caucuses, people who care about ideas in government ought to flood the next Citizens League annual meeting and take back the board and get the organization to being involved in proposing good ideas and working at the legislature and with the governor to enact them._The legislature judges proposals that are brought to it; that is its role.  It does not come up with solutions - so instead of bemoaning this reality, the Civic Caucus ought to develop some good proposals - thinking concretely about them, not in general terms like "utilize volunteers".  But working out what exactly can be done with this idea and where can it be implemented.  Probably takes more resources and staff than CC has, hence my revolution pitch.

George Pillsbury (somewhat) (yes) (yes)

Ted Kolderie

It's hard to see much evidence to support the sense that (affirmative)government can now save us. Mostly we see 'government', the elected officials, unwilling to offend; unable to contain expenditure, continually fudging hard choices. Would you bet against Congress (a) expanding medical/hospital insurance while (b) not acting effectively to control costs in the system? Pawlenty might be an exception, but note how the role he played doesn't meet test of 'strong government' that many of its advocates favor.

Earlier it was left to private individuals and families to face-reality, accept-necessity. Now we've made that a responsibility of the political system. And there's little indication the political system will be able to handle that responsibility. We need to do all we can, especially here at home. But it's naive to be optimistic.

Malcolm McLean

Question 1: Yes.   There are many problems, of course, but we must always be hopeful.  I prefer a stronger word like "hope", rather than "bullish."  There is a theological meaning to hope.  Without it, we can do nothing.  With it, so many things are possible.

Question 2:   I am not an expert on this but I think so.  Probably all compaigns will be different and will, in different ways, follow Obama's example.

Question 3:  Yes.  I am a volunteer in many causes and glad to be one.  One cautionary thought is that volunteers cannot do it all.  Volunteers cannot be expected to follow a regular work day.  For example, I will be willling to work hard for our causes, but when Wendy and I decide to go to our vacation home in Bayfield, WI, we go.  So we, like most volunteers, are not strongly disciplined in our schedule.  Repeating, volunteers can be most helpful and association with good causes beyond their own direct interests enriches the lives of thousands of volunteers, most of them older people, in Minnesota.

Sheila Kiscaden

Question 1:  Bullish is too strong a word...but I think we have the human capital and the social conscience to continue to seek to be innovators and to recreate the will to invest in our communities, our children, the future

Question 2: Without question.

Question 3:  At this point we need to seek ways through both the public and non-profit sectors for meaningful involvement of volunteers of all ages...and in the private sector for more flexible work schedules that can accommodate the work/life balance needs of employees of all ages.

Pat Lichty

Question 1:  I am not bullish on Minnesota's future.  We are a small, cold state and depended on our famous quality of life to attract and keep people here.  However, we changed our tax system in the 1990's to create a systemic deficit in state funding until now, we have made so many cuts in our public infrastructure that our "Minnesota Quality of Life" is at risk.  Given present demographics, I do not see an easy recovery from this. 

Question 2:   The internet is already taking a larger role, so my answer is yes.

Question 3:   What we really need is a state that does not have to depend on volunteers to do jobs that should be paid for.  (Yes, I agree that it is important to have a strong volunteer community.  However, I strongly believe our state would be much better off if we were willing to pay for essential services, including the jobs that maintain public and private services that we need.)

Mary Tambornino

How come one of your questions was not about banking?   Banks used to be mostly, if not all, local.  It is not a good thing that they are not now.  I would love to have banks act like banks, i.e. the engines that make the economy run.  They should not be seen as corporate entities, separate from being an active part in making our communities work. 

Question 1:Yes 

Question 2: Yes, but we will always need the separate eye of the reporters/editorialists.  And we need them to take the same risks that members of the general public take.  When they see something harmful to out state or nation (whatever their focus), they are obligated to speak out.  I do it everyday in my "circle", and am expected to.  I and others need the help of those in the print Media. 

Question 3:   Maybe.  However the only ones that can really afford to do so are the retired.   Somehow I do not think that is what is envisioned.

Scott Halstead (no) (yes) (yes)

Question 1:  The most recent and current legislature, Governors and local leaders have and are failing to make common sense legislation and decisions in the best interests of the State and communities.


Question 2:   I am very concerned about the Governor's unallotment decision as it regards financing for individuals that lack financial resources.


Question 3:  Yes, with additional financial resources and better oversight.


Jim Keller

Question 1:  No - at one time our largest employers were IBM, Honeywell, CDC, and 3M - now it is the state of MN and other public entities._The current tax suggestions appear to hit small business, where the job growth is likely

Question 2: Yes

Question 3:  This is a confusing question - to the extent that there is public support for charitable organizations volunteers are very helpful - Volunteers within a government operation usually are frustrated by rules and regulations.



The Civic Caucus   is a non-partisan, tax-exempt educational organization.   The Core participants include persons of varying political persuasions, reflecting years of leadership in politics and business. Click here  to see a short personal background of each.

   Verne C. Johnson, chair;  David Broden, Charles Clay, Marianne Curry, Bill Frenzel, Paul Gilje,  Jim Hetland,  Marina Lyon, Joe Mansky, John Mooty,  Jim Olson,  and Wayne Popham 

The Civic Caucus, 01-01-2008
8301 Creekside Circle #920,   Bloomington, MN 55437.
Verne C. Johnson, chair, 952-835-4549,       Paul A. Gilje, coordinator, 952-890-5220.

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