Carl Sack Posts

“Restoring” Chester Creek?

This afternoon I went running in Chester Park for the first time in a while. I parked at the Chalet and immediately noticed this posting on a light pole:

Apparently the city and the Soil and Water Conservation District will be removing the old dams at the foot of the ski hill, revegetating the stream banks, and building a pedestrian footbridge. My first reaction to this was, “Cool! It’ll be great to have a restored stream habitat.” But as I thought about it a little more, I started wondering what it was exactly that needs restoring here.

Robert Plant and Mike Simonson

Hey Duluth. It’s been awhile.

Two radio-related things happened today I heard here in Madison and thought you might be interested in.

1) Robert Plant gave a nod to Duluth’s own Low in a CBC interview on their show Q (it’s towards the end).

2) WPR announced the death of Mike Simonson, a journalist for whom I have the utmost respect and enjoyed hearing on the statewide news whenever his stories showed up. He cared about reporting what needed to be reported and unpacking the news in a very authentic way. Looks like Final Edition has had its final edition. He’ll be greatly missed.

Northeast Minnesota Sulfide Mining Conference

Defend Anti-War Activists!

Northland Anti-war Coalition Statement on FBI Raids

On Friday, Sept. 24, FBI agents raided four homes of anti-war and social justice activists in Minneapolis, the offices of the Twin Cities Anti-War Committee, two homes in Chicago, and others in Michigan and North Carolina.

All of the activists targeted have been involved in legal, open political work against U.S. wars and for solidarity with the people of Palestine and Latin America. None have yet been charged with any crime.

Reports indicate that this raid was more than a year in the making, and it follows on the heels of a U.S. Justice Department investigation revealing that the FBI has been illegally spying on activists in the peace and social justice movements for several years.

Nazi sighting

So I’m driving down Michigan Street at 8:45 tonight, and walking down the sidewalk toward the main entrance of the Depot is this guy dressed in full Third Reich regalia. I’m talking military-grade Lederhosen, swastika arm-band and even an olive flack helmet, walking like he’s got a stick up his ass. I did overcome the urge to yell obscenities or throw things out the window, but I couldn’t resist slowing way down and gawking. I mean, who does that?

I considered that maybe the Playhouse is doing some thing involving the holocaust, but in that case don’t they have dressing rooms? Who in their right mind would be caught dead in that get-up outside? Then my co-worker suggested that maybe he was going to attend one of the court-ordered group sessions for drunk drivers they have at the Depot and trying to make some political statement. But that just begs the question, what kind of person has that stuff laying around in his closet?

I’m compelled to wonder, is this something ugly that blew in on a tall ship, or just some local dumbass making an idiot out of himself?

Western Middle School site. Discuss.

As a hardcore environmentalist and a Red Plan critic, I am rather befuddled by all the talk of an EIS for the Western Middle School.

To be quite honest, the Western Middle School on the chosen site is the one part of the Red Plan I actually support. As an avid outdoor explorer, I think I’ve made tracks in just about every wild spot in Duluth, this one included. I can tell you the “pristine field” critics talk about is mostly an invasive buckthorn hell. Putting a middle school there, if done right, could lead to ecological restoration and native landscaping to improve a highly disturbed ecosystem.

Emergency Protest against Flotilla Murders 5pm Tuesday

On Tuesday, June 1, at 5 p.m., peace and justice activists in Duluth will gather at the Federal Building to denounce the Israeli government’s assault on the Gaza Freedom Convoy and call for an end to U.S. aid for Israel.

Right on, St. Paul!

Well, it’s sort of regional… might be a good idea for Duluth:

St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman orders boycott of city-funded travel to Arizona

Free Democracy Summit 7.0

Google Bike

Google biking. Very rad.

Forum: The Copenhagen Debacle and the Fight for Climate Justice

Sunday, February 28, 7 PM, Center for Just Living, College of St. Scholastica Tower Hall

Runaway climate change threatens the entire human species with annihilation. Join a presentation and discussion of why efforts to halt global warming to date have failed and what needs to be done.

Sponsored by Lake Superior Socialist Action, P.O. Box 16853, Duluth, MN 55806. For more information contact (715) 394-6660 or [email protected].

SMDC Rejects Contract Offer, Authorizes Strike

FYI, SMDC netted $28.7 million in profits (despite being a “nonprofit” hospital) in 2007 and purchased over $5 million worth of property last year. CEO Peter Person makes $1.1 million per year. The average medical transcriptionist makes just on the threshold of a living wage – $35,000 per year. Solidarity! (Stay tuned for info on how you can help out…)

Party Bus FAIL

To the organizers of Homegrown,

On the surface of it, having a “Highway 61 night” theme to Wednesday’s homegrown festivities seemed like a good idea. But it would have been a much better idea had there been adequate transportation up that namesake road to the Lakeview Castle, the main venue of the later evening, as was advertised. Frustratingly, there was not.

The night started well enough at the Twins Bar, with a stellar (as always) performance by the Rez. The “first” bus left on its journey to the Castle at 9 PM as scheduled. I wasn’t on it, but I imagine it was fairly sparsely ridden, as the bar was still pretty empty and the first act was still playing at that point.

Though none of the Homegrown volunteers working the Twins seemed to know anything specific about the bus times, the Homegrown Guide gave the impression that the bus would go up, turn around and come back, making multiple trips throughout the evening. But it turns out we were falsely led.

I talked to several people, who all were under the impression that the next bus would come be at 10. Between 9 and 10, the Twins went from sparse to quite full. Several people arrived specifically to catch the 10 PM bus up the shore, maybe to have a drink first. At least a couple dozen people were waiting for the bus around 10, but it didn’t show up and didn’t show up. Finally, we received word from a volunteer that the bus was parked at the Castle and wouldn’t be leaving there until 11 for another run.

What should have been a completely fun night became tainted with frustration. Had the bus done its job as advertised, we all could have gotten up there in time to see Old Knifey (a travesty to be missed) and stayed long enough to make the 25-minute trip worthwhile. But as it stood, you had a couple dozen people out waiting in the rain instead of at least being informed of the situation in a timely manner so they could go back inside, relax and enjoy the music at Twins. It also became a potentially dangerous situation when people who had already had a few drinks got fed up with waiting and decided to drive themselves up the shore instead of taking the bus. And once those unlucky enough to stick it out for the bus got on and got up the shore, they only had an hour or so of musical talent to enjoy at the Castle.

9 PM is a fine time to start running a bus if it’s your FIRST bus. But it’s too early to be the ONLY reasonable bus. Advertising a back-and-forth shuttle and then not having one just isn’t cool. Better to have no bus than half a bus and leave people stuck.

Joey, I’ve never felt this way about a man before…

Okay, so it may be inappropriate and immature, but does anyone else think this picture published in today’s DNT makes it look like the Prez and the Veep are about to do some Brokeback Mountain-style smoochin’?