Readers Write: (Oct. 28): 2013 election, wolf management, Sochi Olympics, surveillance, health care rollout

  • Updated: October 27, 2013 - 4:22 PM

Mayoral candidate Bob Fine argues that the Star Tribune has marginalized him inappropriately.

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2013 ELECTION

The Star Tribune’s disservice to voters

Apparently, being a current officeholder and the only mayoral candidate in Minneapolis to have been elected citywide is not significant enough for the Star Tribune to acknowledge my candidacy as legitimate. Nearly all candidate forums and other press outlets included me as a “leading candidate.”

Sixteen years on the Park Board and Board of Estimate and Taxation, including serving as president of both, as well as being a Minneapolis civil-rights commissioner for 18 years, doesn’t count. The paper totally ignored my entry in August and judges my candidacy on not raising enough money in three weeks after filing.

The Star Tribune relies on money and a poll. The poll, relying on land lines, ignores most voters. The use of PACs and fundraising as criteria validates the notion that money controls elections. I have not sought endorsements from special interests.

My grass-roots campaign, with huge numbers of volunteers, is evident by significant presence in lawn signs. This is largely a result of four decades of community volunteer work and citywide name recognition for accomplishments with our nationally renowned park system.

My vision of streamlining government and being the only candidate to propose reducing property taxes by 5 percent deserves exploration. The Park Board had less than half the tax increases the city received in the past decade, got rid of inefficiencies and still provides great service.

Minneapolis deserves better.

Bob Fine, Minneapolis

WOLF MANAGEMENT

What will Minnesota show the nation?

Louis D. Brandeis, the great social reformer and Supreme Court justice, once wrote: “It is one of the happy incidents of the federal system that a single courageous State may, if its citizens choose, serve as a laboratory; and try novel social and economic experiments without risk to the rest of the country.”

So it is with wildlife conservation issues here. There is no need to restate that Minnesota’s gray wolf population has not rebounded fully, and that our Department of Natural Resources in 2012 overestimated the number of resident adult wolves before authorizing two recreational wolf hunts.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is beginning deliberations to remove protections from the wolf in the Lower 48. The states will acquire more control over management if federal protections lapse. The first question is whether our legislators will explore nonlethal management solutions for this critical predator or continue to court special interests. The second is whether we can lead the nation — or not.

NEIL ROSS, Minnetonka

OLYMPICS

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