Commentaries is where Minnesota Public Radio welcomes your thoughtful opinion about current events and issues. Commentaries are like letters to the editor. To be considered for publication, your commentary should be issue-related, clearly written, and follow our Terms of Use. New insights into ongoing topics are especially welcome. Not all commentaries received are published. For topical interaction with others, visit the discussion groups.

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Bike commuting saves money

When I bike commute I burn one tank of gas a month instead of one a week. [MPR Public Insight Journalism: A Guide to Winter Biking] That more than covers bike items like lights, clothes, etc. Also I save on car maintenance since I drive only 5,000 miles a year instead of the average 12,000.

Paul Stewart
Minneapolis, Minn.

Financial aid: Investing In the future?

I think that the small price paid in the cost of financial aid is not viewed in the returns that is generates. [MPR Your Voice Commentary: Personal concerns about financial aid] If I am starting a business that requires an educated workforce, I can move to a state that that is cheaper to live in but at what cost. Does the small amount of money saved in taxes negate the lack of qualified local workers, or the higher wages I have to pay to get people to move to a poor quality of life place to live?

Cheap education is the key to building a productive economy that is based on high value added technologies, and does not face downward wage pressures as past technologies become cheaper - and generate less wealth as they compete with workers from around the world.

Brian Steidl
Saint Cloud, Minn.

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