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Editorials

Short takes

Hemp offers opportunities to farmers THUMBS UP: Its was about time that U.S. Agriculture officials finalized a rule that will allow farmers to legally grow hemp. A national hemp-growing program that Congress authorized in the 2018 farm bill WILL be launched by the rule. At a time when ...

DHS due for major overhaul

The Department of Human Services is Minnesota’s largest and most convoluted state agency. The results of a legislative auditor’s office investigation, released Tuesday, indicate is also due for a major overhaul, top to bottom. The investigation found “troubling dysfunction” at DHS ...

Youth and vaping

The 2019 Minnesota Student Survey (MSS) added a new set of questions this year, inquiring about students’ use of and attitudes toward e-cigarettes and vaping. The survey is administered every three years to students across Minnesota, in grades five, eight, nine and 11. It’s a completely ...

Quantum computing race one we can’t afford to lose

We Americans have a habit of bragging about our feats of technology. Our chief economic and military rivals — namely Russia and China — seldom do. They prefer to keep their secrets. No one in this country is certain, then, how far the state-controlled economies of those nations have gone ...

Turkey: Trump’s mistake will cost lives, weaken U.S.

The presidency of Donald Trump is becoming dangerous for Americans, deadly for our allies and surreal. One can see this in the eyes of his Republican colleagues. Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell sees it. House Republican leaders know it. They took remarkable action Wednesday when they ...

Short Takes

Wind energy grants promotes jobs THUMBS UP: Rural Minnesota received a boost from bipartisan legislation introduced by U.S. Senators Tina Smith, D-Minn., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, to renew and expand the Department of Energy’s Office of Wind Energy and award competitive grants to ...

Arm yourself with skepticism

Russian internet trolls who have been successful, probably beyond their wildest dreams, in sowing discord among Americans may be getting a good chuckle out of an announcement by Facebook. Officials at the widely used social media company said this week they will increase efforts to keep ...

Details of Trump’s ethanol plan disappointing

Three weeks ago the Independent reported that President Donald Trump's administration announced an agreement to do more to protect the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard. Vesta farmer George Goblish, who also sits on the Minnesota Corn Research and Promotion Council, was quoted as saying the plan was ...

More vaping deaths

On Wednesday, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) reported two more Minnesotans died in September as a result of vaping-related injuries. This brings the number of vaping related deaths to three. To date, according to the MDH, Minnesota has 73 patients classified as confirmed or probable ...

Short takes

Don’t worry about outcome of vote THUMBS DOWN: Apparently Tuesday’s scheduled vote on a recycling contract with Southwest Sanitation to provide curbside recycling pickup in Lyon County is a foregone conclusion. Lyon County mailed informational flyers to residents this week providing the ...

Nobel for testing conventional wisdom

Conventional wisdom — even its more intuitive cousin, common sense — sometimes needs to be tested scientifically. This year’s winners of the Nobel Prize in economics are living proof of that. Michael Kremer of Harvard University and Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo of the Massachusetts ...

When is impeachment unimpeachable?

Minnesota’s First District Rep. Jim Hagedorn borrowed a phrase from former Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart when he said at his Madelia town hall meeting Wednesday his definition of an impeachable offense is, “you know it when you see it.” Stewart said of pornography in a Supreme ...

Get ready for bi-weekly curbside recycling pickup

Later this morning, residents of Lyon County will find out whether or not County Commissioners will approve a new contract with Southwest Sanitation to pick up recyclables from the curb on a bi-weekly basis. Of course this will be a change from the weekly curbside pickup that county residents ...

Posting caused panic about deer

Of course, it’s easy. Of course it’s fast. Of course, it’s going to attract lots of attention. But, oh dear, what a complicated mess. Schell’s Brewery in New Ulm learned that firsthand when a post on social media in September bemoaned the condition of the deer on the brewery ...

Short Takes

Preparing for the worst in Minneapolis THUMBS DOWN: The President Donald Trump rally in Minneapolis was a no-win situation for Minneapolis officials. Trump and the Republican party have every right to hold the rally at the Target Center. But with thousands of supporters and protesters ...

EDA ‘boots on the ground’ making a difference

Last spring members of the Marshall City Council held a series of town hall meetings. Council members Russ Labat and Steven Meister held the first one at the Marshall-Lyon County Library. While Labat and Meister fielded questions involving a number of topics, economic development was the No. 1 ...

Congress should be able to multitask

Are leaders in Congress unable to walk and chew gum at the same time? That is, are they capable of multitasking on major issues? Some are speculating they are not. Recall that just a few weeks ago, in the wake of more mass murders, lawmakers vowed to debate steps to reduce the likelihood of ...

Will foreign leaders want to talk anymore?

Apparently, President Donald Trump believed he could score some political points by releasing the transcript of a July telephone call between himself and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy. Whether that is true remains to be seen. But one thing is obvious: Partisan politics has become ...

Short takes

Enjoying a cup of coffee with a cop THUMBS UP: So often our conversations with law enforcement are during situations like being stopped for speeding. On Wednesday, members of the Lyon County and Marshall law enforcement held a Coffee With a Cop at Hy-Vee Market in Marshall Wednesday. What a ...