Mulling On . . .

Mulling On . . .

3/30/17

The Metropolitan Council

The Metropolitan Council doesn’t love Jordan.

In fact, they barely know Jordan exists. All the kowtowing is strictly one-way. County, city and township elected and staffs suck up to the Met Council in hopes that crumbs will fall from the table. And for certain darling jurisdictions they do. But for everyone else?

The Metropolitan Council wants to spread people (and problems) around the Greater Metropolitan Area like so much peanut butter on a slice of bread.

Is racial profiling a problem in inner cities? The Met Council’s solution is to lessen the concentration of people of color in one area (usually inner cities) by moving them to another area (usually suburbs and exurbs). Their means to accomplish this is to set standards for how much subsidized housing a city must have. And they push their program by telling cities to either participate or lose Met Council funding.

When cities tap into the Metropolitan Council’s water system, their water costs go down, which sounds good. But there’s an enormous infrastructure cost for miles of water main linkages. And the cities’ control over their water supply is lost.

The Met Council is encouraging cities to tie into Met Council operated sewer and water systems. The mega-systems are more efficient, so water and sewer rated can go down. That’s true. But when a problem befalls the systems in Robbinsdale (for example), the whole Met Council system foots the bill to fix the problem. Met Council’s hope is that you won’t realize your water and sewer bills are going up to support parts of a system that are forty or fifty miles from your home.

What’s more (and more disturbing, in my opinion), when cities hook up to the Met Council’s regional systems, they lose control over their water supply. Consider, White Bear Lake is having water shortages. Where will they get more water to sustain the growth the Met Council is fostering? Why, they’ll get their water from Minneapolis or St. Paul through the regional water system. And eventually Minneapolis and St. Paul will begin drawing water from the ‘burbs. Then the ‘burbs will begin drawing water from under the exurbs. The Met Council’s reasoning will be that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. So Jordan’s water will go to Shako and Prior Lake.

But don’t worry. Your City Council understands this, and will deal with it appropriately when the time comes. One just needs to have faith.

Actually, some of the outlying counties, including Scott County, are beginning to see that the Met Council has usurped county authority, and they are running a little revolution to get more control over the Met Council. In my opinion, the Met Council should be limited to providing water, sewer and transportation to cities and counties that ask for it. They should have NO control over planning and zoning.

Playing a Trump

Someone (in my opinion) is playing Donald Trump like a fiddle.

The introductory notes were sounded by some ‘unnamed officials’ in the Obama (Democratic) White House who gave Representative Devon Nunes (a Republican) presumably classified information about how a surveillance of Russian government communications coincidentally pulled up information on then candidate Trump. (It’s unmentioned whether the eavesdropping also picked up calls from the Kremlin to Domino’s for thin crust pizzas with extra meat.)

The prelude finds Rep. Nunes in an Uber ride after dark on March 21st. The prelude begins with a lazy tempo, but quickly changes to compound triple time as Nunes diverts his ride to the White House. (The hell you say? Why is a United States Representative using Uber, and did they really let the Uber driver into the White House grounds?)

The first movement recalls in staccato the President tweeting during the early hours of March 4th about how he just found out his building had been wiretapped. The movement ends abruptly when Trump’s staff wake up.

The second movement is longer and employs a more measured tempo. Various sections of the orchestra almost seem to be playing from a different score. We hear rhythms, sub-rhythms, and even counter-rhythms as the various sections of the orchestra compete for attention. But by the end of the movement the fiddles dominate with a sound that is more like a barn dance reel than a symphony.

The third movement is an amusing mix of staccato fiddles, whistle-blowing from the piccolos; stentorious tootles from various reeds and raucous blats from the brass. It’s almost as if Spike Jones conspired in the composition of the movement. Crescendo follows crescendo. The listener gets the sense that the movement is not, and may never be complete.

The coda hasn’t been played yet in public, but here’s what I think we’ll find.

The whistle-blowing piccolos from the Obama White House leaked sensitive information late at night to the raucous brass in the Trump administration. The blats woke the twittering fiddler in the middle of the night, and the fiddler fiddled a jig on the spot, thus acting the fool. The other instruments in Trump’s symphony (at least some of them, anyway) are hoping the Fiddler-in-Chief will sound enough false notes to be put out of office, elevating the Vice Fiddler to the first chair, thus unifying the Republican Party, and bringing the symphony into some semblance of harmony.

As Chuck Berry used to sing:
“Hey diddle diddle, I am playin’ my fiddle,
Ain’t got nothin’ to lose
Roll Over Beethoven and tell Tschaikowsky the news”

The Quote:
“There’s no trick to being a humorist when you have the whole government working for you.”
           Will Rogers

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