"Where Fillmore County News Comes First"
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Sunday, October 26th, 2014
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My biggest fan


Fri, Nov 13th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

I seem to have one dedicated reader. He sends me anonymous letters that brighten my day. I would like to respond, but he has no return address or name attribution in his letters mailed from Rochester. He appears, from the state of the handwriting, to be as elderly as I am. He has called me a socialist, a communist, and fascist in the same paragraph and painted a Hitler moustache on my picture in the Journal articles he kindly sends along with notations covering my more egregious statements. It is hard to be upset with someone who believes Hitler was a socialist (and Nazism socialistic) because socialist was part of the Nazi party's name (National Socialist German Worker's Party). That's like believing enhanced interrogation means asking more pleasant questions rather than torture. Maybe that isn't the reason he thinks I'm a socialist. Could he be channeling Joe the Plumber? He doesn't know what socialism is either.

I am, probably, what politicians now call a liberal or what the Democrats have renamed progressive. In the days of Teddy Roosevelt, FDR, Truman, and Eisenhower I probably would be called a centrist. If he is as old as I am, he must be one of the elderly who oppose health care reform because of its purported effects on Medicare and maybe some other misconceptions.

Most of us watching the debate on health care know of the white-haired lady at the "town hall meeting" who shouted out, "Keep your government hands off my Medicare." Medicare is as much a government program as it is possible to be. Government collects the tax, holds the trust funds, determines how they will be spent, and sends out the checks.

Republicans have demagogued most of the reform plans saying seniors will lose benefits and possibly their insurance. Seniors that have Medicare Advantage Plans may lose some frills (such as gym memberships and organized exercise classes) and some insurance companies may quit selling in the areas in which some seniors live. That will not be the fault of the reforms but a business decision by insurance executives. Many of the plans propose to quit paying private for profit insurance companies 14 percent more per year than standard Medicare to cover Medicare recipients and so their profits may suffer.

Pay attention now. Medicare Advantage Plans have been around for decades. The idea was private companies were so much more efficient than the government they would take 95 percent of the cost of standard Medicare per pati .....
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Great white birds and hope for a troubled world

Fri, Nov 6th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

To brighten an overcast, cold and windy November, try a short trip to the eastern edge of Houston County along the Mississippi River where you may join hundreds of people observing the spectacular tundra swan migration. The best places to watch the ..... 
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One moment, please...

Fri, Nov 6th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

On some occasions, I have a variety of subjects to cover in my weekly column. This week, there happens to be two thoughts relating to Harmony, Lanesboro, Preston and Rus ..... 
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Health Care & Confusion

Fri, Oct 30th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

I admit that I am confused by the overwhelming assault on the senses regarding the health care debate in Congress. One can't read the newspaper or watch TV without seeing some reference to some aspect of health care. The consensus is that changes ne ..... 
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It's time to govern the flow of political money

Fri, Oct 30th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

There was a time when I believed that the best way to curtail the impact of money flowing into our political system was to monitor it. Make sure that campaign contributions and lobbying expenditures were reported quickly and accurately, I reasoned, ..... 
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Journal Writing Project

Fri, Oct 30th, 2009
Posted in Commentary



I can still remember my first day of high school, walking into the gym with all the upperclassmen. The thing that sticks out the most in my mind that day in the gym was our principal, Mr. Olstad, saying that "high school flies by." I was thi ..... 
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Local businesses: use them or lose them

Thu, Oct 29th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

The benefit to our economy by using local businesses is significant. Minnesota Department of Revenue gross retail sales data showed that for every $100 spent at a chain store, only $12 is circulated back into the local economy. Whereas that same $10 ..... 
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One moment, please... Fillmore County's fertility drug

Fri, Oct 16th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

By Jason Sethre

Publisher of the Fillmore County Journal, cell phone number 507-251-5297

Since I began my crusade in late August in search of new business developments evolving in the past 12 months in Fillmore County, I have made seve ..... 
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Grown-up in the room

Fri, Oct 16th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

Lewiston-Altura Schools are in a legal battle regarding bullying. They are not unique. Bullying is an issue in every school hallway and lunchroom and, for that matter, every workplace. I want to apologize, however, for how prevalent this has become. ..... 
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