Expanded gambling pays off
THUMBS UP: There are still people griping about expanded gambling and how some of its proceeds will go toward a new stadium for the Minnesota Vikings. It's time to move on, people. We understand if you're against a new stadium because you believe billionaire owners should pay for it themselves, but when it comes to expanded electronic gambling, perhaps you should look at the benefits and not focus on the $350 million that is expected to be generated for Zygi Wilf's playground. What about the more than 1,000 charities in the state that will benefit from expanded gambling? What about a spike in business many bars will surely see as a result of expanded gambling - a spike they will surely welcome after watching business fall since the indoor smoking ban went into effect a few years ago. And for those against recreational gambling in bars, you can continue to carry that torch, just don't get so close that it burns the rest of us.
Farm bill bogs down
THUMBS DOWN: The lack of movement on a new five-year farm bill is discouraging to say the least and makes you wonder how many members of the U.S. Congress really care about where their food comes from or what kind of shape our water is in. The farm bill is a collection of important programs that include nutrition, soil and water conservation and various farming programs. How can any member of Congress desire to put this legislation on, or even near, the back-burner? How can they allow political differences to come in the way of making progress on such an important bill? We all know what our congressmen/women will say during their campaigns this year - well, the Republicans didn't do this, or the Democrats didn't want that - but this is an epic failure both parties can take credit for; please, politicians, don't insult us and make it worse by pointing a finger across the aisle. You can bet - and hope if you want - that such little progress on the farm bill will cost some elected officials their seat in Washington come November.
THUMBS UP: Looking to do something different this weekend to quench your thirst for entertainment? We suggest you head out to SMSU on Saturday evening for the annual Pursuit of Excellence marching band competition. Pursuit features some of the top marching bands from Minnesota (including Marshall High School), Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota. It's a spectacle for both the eyes and ears and we encourage everyone to stop out and support these hard-working students and directors.