New research shows the Monday Morning Rouser makes it feel like Wednesday. Really.
1)INSIDE THE PASSIVE HOUSE
Last July, MPR's Stephanie Hemphill introduced us to the only passive house in Wisconsin, which at the time was under construction. It's a German building concept slowly -- very slowly -- taking root here. The house is finished and this weekend, its owner -- Dr. Gary Konkol -- invited people in for a tour of the home in North Hudson. But it's more than a house; it's a power plant which will sell electricity to the local cooperative. Here are some of the images I shot:
You can find more information about this carbon-neutral home on its blog.
St. Paulites and Duluthians, what draws you to the city and makes you want to call it home?
The Knight Foundation and Gallup have completed three years of polling in 26 communities in the United States in which Knight owns newspapers-- Duluth and St. Paul were chosen in Minnesota. The goal was to find what creates an emotional bond between people and the community in which they live.
For all the talk about the economy and the importance of jobs, the economy wasn't much of a factor in either St. Paul or Duluth. Nationwide, however, the bond was related to economic growth.
In the St. Paul area, social offerings (entertainment infrastructure, places to meet people, community events), aesthetics (an area's physical beauty and green spaces) and openness (how welcoming the place is) are the most important factors emotionally connecting residents to where they live.
Aesthetics was perceived as a community strength, particularly the area's parks, playgrounds and trails. All aspects of aesthetics were rated significantly higher in 2010.
Social offering and openness need improvement to further attach residents to the area, however both were rated significantly higher in 2010. Nightlife was rated significantly higher. Gays and lesbians are seen as significantly more welcome in 2010 - all positive momentum that helped to improve these challenge areas for the community.
The study said the economy isn't rated very highly as a "bonding agent" for people. "Leadership" was rated even lower. Here's the St. Paul findings.
The findings for the Duluth area aren't much different:
In the Duluth area, social offerings (entertainment infrastructure, places to meet people, community events), openness (how welcoming a place is) and aesthetics (an area's physical beauty and green spaces) are the most important factors in emotionally connecting residents to where they live.
Aesthetics, particularly the natural beauty of the area is perceived as a community strength.
Social offerings, particularly the cultural opportunities, and openness, particularly to young talent needs improvement to increase resident attachment. However, nightlife is rated significantly higher in 2010. The area is perceived to be most welcoming to seniors and least welcoming to young talent, although both groups are seen as significantly more welcome in the area in 2010. Residents 55 and older are the most attached of all age groups, whereas 18-34 year old residents are least attached.
Duluth, why don't you welcome "young talent?" Here are the Duluth findings.
As of 9 a.m., a live presentation on the findings can be found here.
NPR has hired an outside investigator to review its botched (at least from a P.R. standpoint) firing of commentator Juan Williams last month.
But NPR's ombudsman isn't happy with the notion that some of the resulting report won't be made public.
I'm told it's unlikely the final report will be made public in its entirety, though parts of it may be. I always advocate for transparency, but NPR considers this a personnel issue even though the resulting damage to NPR goes beyond the consequences of firing an independent contractor.
NPR can hire the most sophisticated investigators in the world, but how can such a review have credibility if people who care about NPR can't read the full results of it? NPR needs to find a way to make the full report --or the key parts of it --public.(4 Comments)
Really, even if I weren't a huge Minnesota Timberwolves fan, I'd be recommending this video investigating the botched handshake between Wes Johnson and Kevin Love.
The Wolves have done a fine job with their social networking and multimedia and, let's face it, when's the last time you got a laugh from a Minnesota sports team that was intentional?
But, wait, that's not the oddest video of the day. This is:(1 Comments)
Is John Tyner the new Rosa Parks or just a guy looking for his 15 minutes of fame?
His story of his refusal to subject himself to a TSA search at the airport in San Diego, has been zipping across the Internet since the incident last Friday morning.
He writes on his blog that he thought San Diego had not yet deployed the new scanners, which some say are a bit too revealing for them. But when he got to the airport, he found the new scanners were in use and he refused.
After setting my things on a table, he turned to me and began to explain that he was going to do a "standard" pat down. (I thought to myself, "great, not one of those gropings like I've been reading about".) After he described, the pat down, I realized that he intended to touch my groin. After he finished his description but before he started the pat down, I looked him straight in the eye and said, "if you touch my junk, I'll have you arrested." He, a bit taken aback, informed me that he would have to involve his supervisor because of my comment.
He got his money back for the airline ticket and was leaving the airport when a security official said it would be against the law to start a security screening without finishing it, even though he'd given up his intention to fly.
He used his phone to tape the audio.
In a later post, Mr. Tyner denied he intended to pick a fight with the TSA, but the 3,000 comments on his blog certainly suggest that the airport screening area may be the next battleground in a fight against the long hand of the government.
Meanwhile, two large pilots unions are telling their members not to use the new full-body scanners.(7 Comments)
We don't know whatever happened to Marine Pvt. Travis Hafterson, the Circle Pines soldier who went AWOL last year because he allegedly wasn't getting treatment for his Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. His family stopped returning my messages after the Marines, having arrested Hafterson minutes before a Minnesota court intervened to get mental health treatment, claimed he'd never seen the combat he claimed he had. The military won't say, and the few Minnesota politicians who tried to intervene on his behalf refused to answer questions, too.
We know today, however, that Pvt. Hafterson's story isn't unusual. Spc. Jeff Hanks called CBS News today to say his "treatment" for PTSD from the Army is "going nowhere."
His story sounds just like Hafterson's. He went AWOL, went to civilian doctors who said he was suffering the effects of his service, then turned himself in to the military, which ignored the diagnosis.
Hanks said he showed the Army counselor three evaluations from civilian therapists diagnosing Hanks with emotional problems and recommending that he be tested for PTSD, but the counselor rejected them.
"'Those don't matter,'" Hanks said the counselor told him. "The military doesn't look at civilian diagnosis."
Here's a piece CBS did on the soldier last week.
It's easier to track the mental health treatment veterans are getting than the treatment -- or lack of it -- that active duty soldiers are.
Officials at Benilde-St. Margaret, a Catholic school in St. Louis Park, have removed two articles from the school newspaper's Web site critical of the Archdiocese's DVD mailing against same-sex marriage.
Dr. Sue Skinner, the principal, posted this on the Web site:
The administration is asking that the staff editorial entitled "Staff Finds DVD unsubstantiated" , and the opinion piece titled "Life as a Gay Teenager" be immediately removed from the Knight Errant website along with the online comments for each piece. The reason is that while lively debate and discussion clearly has its place in a Catholic school, this particular discussion is not appropriate because the level of intensity has created an unsafe environment for students. As importantly, the articles and ensuing online postings have created confusion about Church teaching. The administration will be following up with the staff of the Knight Errant to review and discuss the protocol for what is appropriate content.
Is it a violation of the First Amendment? Probably not, according to the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled in a case of a public school (Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier) that authorities have the right to censor school newspapers.
"A school need not tolerate student speech that is inconsistent with its basic educational mission, even though the government could not censor similar speech outside the school," it wrote.
In that case, a principal had barred printing of articles about one student's pregnancy and another student's thoughts about his/her parents' divorce.
But that was then. Now, the articles that were banned today can easily be distributed if the students at Benilde-St. Margaret want to push it that far. Any number of Web sites -- including this one, I suspect -- would post the offending articles, or the students could distribute it themselves using any number of social networks or blogs.
The ability to censor anything inevitably depends on the willingness of journalists to risk the consequences of opposing it.(6 Comments)