June 22, 2005
Like watching a train wreck
I'd be surprised if you haven't seen this news yet, but apparently the projected state budget deficit is about to get larger. To the tune of between $250 to $300 million due to a state Supreme Court decision that will allow corporations in Minnesota to claim tax breaks for foreign operations. The state, it seems, expects a lot of corporations to begin claiming these tax breaks which could add up to a lot of money in a hurry. According to some lawmakers, this deficit won't be dealt with until the next legislative session and until after the state's budget forecast in November, but that didn't stop both sides of the aisle from taking turns pointing fingers (DFLers) and discounting the severity of this problem (Republicans).
What a mess. And after reading about the DFLers reaction to this fiasco, and the Republican's vigil outside the door of Dean Johnson's office, I'm beginning to sense a government shutdown is almost a given. Look at this from the DFL point of view. By standing firm on their desire to raise taxes for the wealthiest Minnesotans to fund programs like MinnesotaCare they effectively have the high ground in this battle. Especially when you factor in this growing deficit. Many Minnesotans are beginning to see the raising of taxes as an inevitability and they are starting to look at Pawlenty and Sviggum as too inflexible. If Pawlenty capitulates he will need to break his no new taxes pledge, and in political-speak that will be a "gift that keeps on giving" for the DFL come the next elections. However, if Pawlenty does not give in, his budget cuts will look/be so extreme that I don't know how he will survive.
My prediction: The DFL stands firm, the government shuts down, and Pawlenty ends up taking the heat. What do you think Oracle?
And what does all of this mean for a new Twins stadium? Stick a fork in it, as Douglas has already said. I can't even see them getting to the Gopher's stadium in this climate. Of course, I continue to pray that I am wrong about all of this.
Secondly, check out Mr. Cheer or Die today as he continues his series on advice for Zygi with a discussion about the stadium. In his post he writes convincingly that the new Vikings stadium needs some kind of signature attraction, ala the pirate ship at Raymond James. I made some suggestions in the comments focusing on Norse mythology. Please add some more!
Finally, as many of you know, I am big on trying to find the "signs from God" in everyday things. For example, a while back I wrote about "whatever song comes on next ..." and how I play that game to determine the outcome of the future or my present course of action. Well, as many of you know I also subscribe to Netflix, and out of the blue Netflix sent me a movie that wasn't even on my queue. In fact, I already had three movies at home so to get a fourth for no reason was totally unexpected. What movie did they send me? It was Dumb and Dumberer, the sequel to Dumb and Dumber.
At first I thought, why did they send me this? Do they think I will enjoy this based on the other selections in my queue? I was offended! I was outraged! But then I thought, well, I do have both The Ladies Man and Hot Chick in my queue so I guess I should keep my moral indignation to a minimum.
Then it dawned on me, this is a sign from God! He is trying to tell me something through Dumb and Dumberer! I mean, what other explanation is there for getting this random movie, one that isn't even in my queue, and especially when I already have three movies at home? So, I watched the movie last night, and I watched it very closely as I tried to decipher the message meant only for me.
Unfortunately, the only message I could get out of this movie is that I have somehow offended God in a most egregious manner. What a bad movie. It is so bad it might have to go on The List. Last night I lost two hours of my life that I can never get back for a movie that Gitmo is probably using as a torture device. What have I done to offend thee, Lord? Well, fortunately it seems my punishment is over. Believe me, I am trying to think of the offense that caused my punishment so as to avoid this in the future.
If anyone else has seen this movie and can think of what other kind of message God is trying to send me, I would be grateful for any ideas you have. Otherwise, I will continue to think I have been chastised.
I would imagine that a government shut down would be the death knell for both the Twins and Gophers stadiums. This would lead to all three teams (Twins, Vikings, and Gophers) fighting for stadiums (and legislative attention) in the next session. I do not think this would be a positive. I don't want to be negative, but the overall picture looks bleak right now.
Curt in Grand Forks
Posted by: Curt Hanson at June 22, 2005 9:47 AM
Meanwhile, the esteemed legislators continue to pull a check despite not doing any work. Lessee, what would happen to YOUR pay-check if you sat around for a few months doing nothing? Woudl you get paid? I thought not.
Posted by: Brian Maas at June 22, 2005 10:14 AM
Nooooooo! That can't happen! I need to get my license!
Posted by: TwinsJunkie at June 22, 2005 1:29 PM
Hilarious TwinsJunkie! Although, I thought the DMV was one of the "essential" services that will still be functioning? You may know more about this than me though!
Posted by: Shane at June 22, 2005 2:03 PM
TJ is right. You can get renewals, but not new licenses that require tests.
Posted by: SBG at June 22, 2005 2:48 PM
I think the message is pretty clear: God is offended by your worst movie list.
Posted by: bjhess at June 23, 2005 12:53 PM