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Continued: Readers Write (June 29): The cost of war, personal care attendants, chocolate milk, MnSCU pay

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  • Last update: June 28, 2014 - 6:00 PM

CHOCOLATE MILK

Go ahead and feast on fat — at your peril

Both “Big Fat Surprise” and Paul John Scott (“Chocolate milk in the schools and other products of expert opinion,” June 22) cite the Inuit and Maasai warriors as evidence that fat does not cause the health problems the medical community has claimed. I would submit that the reason these groups do not suffer from high cholesterol is because they are seminomadic and have historically lived physically demanding subsistence lifestyles, which requires the large number of calories provided by fat. Americans, who generally spend their days sitting in a classroom or office and their evenings sitting on the couch, do not require as many calories.

Foods with fat such as steaks can indeed be part of a healthy diet, if you are willing to put in the time and effort to burn off the extra calories. Those who read the article and decide its OK to eat more fatty foods without increasing their amount of exercise will find themselves with bigger waistlines, along with the health issues that come with it.

Benjamin Stansbury- O-Donnell, St. Paul

MNSCU

Review whole system pay, not just top guy’s

According to a Star Tribune editorial (“MnSCU fails test on basic oversight,” June 22) and previous reporting, the Legislature forbade the MnSCU Board of Trustees giving Chancellor Steven Rosenstone a performance bonus, so they laundered the bonus by increasing travel, housing and other expense accounts. This is at best marginally honest and dubiously legal. Small wonder legislators like Gene Pelowski and Terri Bonoff promise to investigate.

They might want to back up and look at administrative costs in the whole system. They could begin with an article by Jon Marcus of the New England Center for Investigative Reporting about the ballooning number of administrators in higher education. He points out that between 1987 and 2011-12, “universities and colleges collectively added 517,636 administrative and professional employees”; at the same time, classroom duties were shifted to adjuncts and teaching assistants.

When James McCormick was named MnSCU chancellor in 2000, he remarked that he had basically the same job in Pennsylvania, but that he had done it with a smaller staff. He added that he would “have to look into that.” Apparently, when he did, he found out it was easy to hire bureaucrats in Minnesota, because that’s what happened. Maybe Pelowski and Bonoff should see whether the trend has continued under Rosenstone.

John Sherman, Moorhead, Minn.

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