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2/14/2007 – Editorials


The scandal at the North Dakota Workforce Safety and Insurance agency will apparently continue. The Republican-controlled senate voted to keep the agency insulated from accountability except to a non-elected board. The board approves of a ridiculously high salary of $170,000 for the director.

A bill was introduced by Sen. Joel Heitkamp (see editorial on this

page) to bring the agency under the direction of Gov. John Hoeven, but the Republican senate decided the board could do a better job than Hoeven. Former Gov. Ed Schafer lobbied hard for the agency to come under the governor’s supervision, but the Republican senators thumbed their noses at him.

The Republican-controlled senate is playing politics of some sort. I haven’t figured it out yet.

Here’s hoping the house will inject some common sense into the issue and defeat this bill. Better yet, perhaps it could be amended back to its original intent, which was to make the agency accountable to an elected official. The present scandal stinks.


Are townships and counties going to be able to zone the property under their jurisdictions or is the whole process going to be turned over to Bismarck?

HB1420 and SB2331 would make township and county zoning ineffective.

Do you want local people making the decisions or do you want bureaucrats in Bismarck making the decisions? The answer to me is obvious. This is an extremely important issue — especially to those of us living next to the big body of water known as Devils Lake.

Those local zoning laws protect the lake from possible pollution.

It’s really important to let your legislators know what you think.

What’s this world coming to? The Farm Bureau is in favor of state control and opposes local control. It appears many Republicans appear to be thinking along the same lines.


An article in last week’s newspaper said World War II veterans could apply for a free trip to Washington, DC. That’s not quite correct. We received the article from a local Auxiliary Monday afternoon. So I set it into type and placed it on a page.

At about 5 p.m. Monday we received another e-mail from the Auxiliary stating that the offer was for WWII veterans living in the WDAY viewing area, which limits the participants pretty much to the Fargo area. Not only that, the program was already filled up.

I noted to myself that I’d better remove that article from the newspaper, but in the rush of trying to get the paper put together, I completely forgot to remove it. Sorry about that.


Three Rednecks were working on a cell phone tower — Cooter, Pete and K.C.

As they start their descent, Cooter slips, falls off the tower and is killed instantly. As the ambulance takes the body away, Pete says, "Someone should go and tell his wife."

KC says, "OK. I’m pretty good at that sensitive stuff. I’ll do it."

Two hours later, he comes back carrying a case of Budweiser.

Pete says, "Where did you get that, KC?"

"Cooter’s wife gave it to me," KC replies.

"That’s unbelievable! You told the lady her husband was dead, and she gave this to you?"

"Well, not exactly." KC says. "When she answered the door, I said to her, ‘You must be Cooter’s widow.’ She said, ‘You must be mistaken.

I’m not a widow.’ "

Then I said, "I’ll bet you a case of Budweiser you are."


Here’s an item about the weather that’s timely because we’ve had quite a bit of it lately:

60 above zero: Floridians turn on the heat. People in North Dakota plant gardens.

50 above zero: Californians shiver uncontrollably. People in Minot sunbathe.

40 above zero: Italian and English cars won’t start. People in North Dakota drive with the windows down.

32 above zero: Distilled water freezes. Water in Williston gets thicker.

20 above zero: Floridians don coats, thermal underwear, gloves and wool hats if they have them. People in North Dakota throw on a flannel shirt.

15 above zero: New York landlords finally turn up the heat. People in North Dakota have the last cookout before it gets cold.

Zero: People in Miami all die. North Dakotans close the windows.

10 below zero: Californians fly away to Mexico. People in North Dakota get out their winter coats.

25 below zero: Hollywood disintegrates. The Girl Scouts in North Dakota are selling cookies door to door (true).

40 below zero: Washington DC runs out of hot air. People in North Dakota let the dogs sleep indoors.

100 below zero: Santa Claus abandons the North Pole. North Dakota residents get upset because they can’t start the mini-van.

460 below zero: ALL atomic motion stops (absolute zero on the Kelvin scale). People in North Dakota start saying, "Cold ’nuff fer ya?"

500 below zero: Hell freezes over. North Dakota schools will open two hours late.


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