The Basement Files

Controversy Cavalcade


It’s awful, it’s shameful, it can’t be sane, it is indefensible, it makes julienne fries, it’s the wrong thing, it’s supported by fools, and it … wait, what were we talking about here? Oh, yeah, it’s controversy time! I, like most of you out there who will admit it or not, love a good controversy, especially when it is about something really stupid.

Fortunately for all of us, “stupid” is something we simply can’t seem to run out of, since of course we are never really happy unless we are complaining about something. So, what’s bunching up folk’s underpants right now? And how can I tighten that bunch? Don’t worry though, if you disagree or get mad at me for something I say, just remember I’m full of it … which is why I spend so long in the bathroom.

A Shallow Tunnel

A Metropolitan Council committee has voted to move forward with a plan for the super-expensive Southwest Light Rail project by voting to move it to the complete Met Council for further votes and all that boring legal jazz. What isn’t as boring as procedural votes, however, is the controversy about the proposed “shallow tunnel” in the Kenilworth Corridor in Minneapolis. It seems that the locals are extremely opposed to the project and, while they have been highly vocal about it, haven’t been able to do much to squash the plan. The council has added an amendment that directs staff to work with the city of Minneapolis (which, shouldn’t they be already?) to “ease the concerns” that many have about the project … but at the same time, saying, “Tough, we’re pushing this through because we are the Met Council and this is what we do.” That may be editorializing a bit, but that is what they are doing, and what they have done for years.

My controversial take on this controversy: Abolish the Met Council. They have taxing authority, yet they are appointed, and we can do nothing to boot them out in the ballot box. Taxation without representation? Kind of what the American Revolution was all about, don’t-cha know.

Viking Stadium

Despite the fact that the proposed stadium is as ugly as sin, many are now questioning why we are footing any part the bill for a monstrous stadium to serve a team that could probably be beaten by some of our better high school teams. Our QB is a joke, so we picked up Josh Freeman, who the Buccaneers couldn’t give away earlier in the year. I’ll give him a chance, everyone deserves one, and maybe by the end of the season we’ll see win number two!

My controversial take on this controversy: Fire the lot of them. Players, managers, staff, give ‘em the boot. Clean house, get some new talent, and for the love of all things good and holy, don’t act like the Twins and trade them just as they start getting good.

Macy’s Unthankful Thanksgiving

Macy’s is opening Thanksgiving evening. At first I heard this and thought “whoop-de-do,” but then I went online, which I am wont to do, and I see that people all around our state started having a fit about Macy’s ruining the sanctity of the holiday.

Again, “whoop-de-do” sums up my feelings perfectly. They are a business, and I guarantee they will make money being open that night. It’s not a “greed” thing like most people are saying, it’s a “business” thing. Businesses make money, as much as they can, or they don’t and close and take our Twinkies away until another company can come in and find a way to make money again.

It’s survival of the fittest, Darwinian to a tee. The strong survive by adapting to the environment, and the weak die off and fall into the dust bin of history. Cruel? You bet, but it’s life. So what about the people who are working that night? I worked holidays, and I will continue to volunteer to. It’s money in my pocket, and I need that money to buy Twinkies now that they are back.

My controversial take on this controversy: Don’t like it, don’t shop there. If they don’t make money, they’ll close that night, and if you don’t like working for a company that makes you work on Thanksgiving, get a different job. May take a while, but if you are willing to work, you’ll find something … unless you get back into retail, in which case you shouldn’t be surprised about having to work during the busiest shopping days of the year.