Category Archives: Harry Welty

Icarus redux

LincolnDemocrat may once again fly Republican colors.

Yesterday after gardening I retreated to the cool of my basement and sat in front of a fan. When I looked up at our electrical panel I decided to snap a picture and post it to humor my eight loyal readers.

I can’t abide giving Donald Trump more obsequious Congressional allies without a bit of a fight no matter how decent they have been in their pre-congressional life. It would cost $300 to file and my partner told me that no matter what she says to me she knows I’ll do what I want to do.

I am that selfish. But I have no plans to spend a dime over $300.00 of my wife’s life earnings for another one of these episodes:

The primary is August 14th. Once that’s over with I can go back to ignoring the winning Republican’s associations and leave it to the voters of the Eighth District to consider them.

“My Vietnam” from today’s Not Eudora column


Peace sign cuff links made for me by my Uncle Frank, a Korean War Veteran.

It begins:

“I just read a short biographical story about Robert Mueller III which described how he earned a bronze star and a purple heart in Vietnam. The story briefly contrasted Meuller and the draft dodging Donald Trump. It described how Trump has often joked that avoiding STD’s in the 1980’s was “his Vietnam,” and how his constant pursuit of sex marked him as very brave soldier. Both men are five years my senior and reached draft age before the war turned sour.”

Read the rest here:

NOTE: Yeah I see it now. It should be “a…

very brave soldier.”

WriteinHarryWelty forCongress.com

Don’t bother looking for it. I’m busy with snow church family french lessons. I haven’t set any place up to campaign for yet other than my blog. Yesterday’s Duluth Trib gave me second thoughts. Today pushing snow around I had second thoughts about yesterday’s second thoughts.

I may have to figure out a new way to set up such a webpage to collect money. My old software for Snowbizz.com seems to have broken down. But I don’t really need money anyway. Getting elected is a terrible, horrible thought. The only thing worse than that is watching the terrible, horrible politics of the last twenty years getting worse and worse. Hell. There has never been a time for less fighting among Americans than today. And yet….

When I get around to blogging later I have several stories in mind. They involve My Grandmother (on my father’s side) my Grandfather (on my Mother’s side) And Barry Goldwater. It will be a test to see if any of current wannabe Congressman in Minnesota’s Eighth District can tell such stories about themselves. Oh and if I set up a campaign webpage I will post my cell phone background picture. This is it:

I want to (not) run for Congress again

I have always considered myself the most reasonable person. I am far more inclined to begin most arguments by putting the other fellow’s or gal’s shoes and walking around in them till I get blisters. I have a reputation ( at least I suspect I do ) for being an off-the-wall bull-in-a-china-shop. As for being off-the-wall its true that, unlike most people, I’ve gotten into the habit of challenging the adage: “the nail that stands out will be pounded down.” Politically it caused me to become:

1. a Republican (a Nixon opponent) during the wave of college anti-Nixon marches
2. a apostle of moderate Republican values in the most Democratic legislative District in America
3. a staunch critic of the Republican Party from within and then a challenger to the Party in an “independent” race for Congress in 1992
4. a School Board candidate who lost three elections before finally prevailing on a fourth attempt
5. a ENOUGH FOR NOW!!!…..I just paused to fold the laundry and Claudia showed me Trevor Noah’s latest commentary about America’s Ongoing S***storm.

The point of the list above is simple. Against the odds as a grown up I’ve become the little kid who shouted at the Emperor that he has no clothes on during the parade surrounded by the king’s secret police. I once wrote an ending to that story. But dear Readerss, this is not a kingdom. It is, or at least once was, the most formidable democracy on Earth. And yet the gatekeepers of our Democracy kept their mouths shut as the party I once belonged to (with some attitude I might add), allowed themselves to be pushed silently into a corner. Then they put duct tape over their own mouths.

The great irony is that millions of these gatekeepers who once said they were voting for “the lesser of two evils” in the 2016 election are now preparing to reelect a Congress full of the folks that put them in the corner while handing them duct tape. Well, I may run jackass, impossible campaigns but I will not support candidates who champion a minute by minute liar.

I have tried to fit in with Democrats. I agree with them on much of their social agenda. My chief differences with them are nit picky but serious. For instance, the idea that humans don’t have the ability to extract copper and nickle from fresh water rich northern Minnesota without poisoning our great grandchildren bother’s me. It bothers me more that its an issue that may very well elect Pete Stauber to Congress. It wouldn’t be the first time such a debate killed the prospects for Minnesota Democrats. The last time was called the Minnesota Massacre. I was a Republican then and it was the second or third most gratifying political event of my 67 years on Earth.

I like Pete. In any election prior to 2012 I would have gladly cast a vote for him. But recent years and this year especially, have changed America. Pete Stauber is a Trump supporter because the people who will vote in both the primary and the general elections detest Trump’s well intentioned critics…..like Trevor Noah.

Here’s a thumb nail of the plan percolating in my head.

I will not run for Congress for the third time. At least I won’t file for election. The possibility of my winning is exceptionally remote, Doing it would require me to bend over backwards to complete campaign data releases that I would have to fill out myself. I’ve done it before in 2006 and they make filling out taxes look like child’s play. More importantly I have no interest in serving in today’s ineffectual Congress where every day is consumed with raising money for the next election and there is no time to read books and be reflective. This has turned our Congress into one of the most ignorant collections of leaders imaginable.

I will encourage both Democrats and Republicans to write my name in for both the Democratic and Republican primaries and, despite being in France all September, for the November General election.

In the meantime I will cobble a book together explaining how America became a scorpion intent on stinging itself into paralysis. I have thousands of posts already written about that. I simply need to select the best and tidy them up a bit while putting them into some kind of linear order. I will begin offering the as yet unwritten book for sale. Any money raised will be sent to me and I’ll have to declare it for taxes as income. Therefore I will keep some small portion of the proceeds to pay for what the “earnings” cost me in taxes so as not to lose money in the process. Someday I’d like to earn money on book sales but not this year. I’m well enough fixed that any; book royalties would be more for my vanity than for creature comforts.

The rest of the money I will likely donate to some of the better candidates running to remove the taint of Donald Trump from our government even though he cannot be removed from our history any more than we can expunge 300 years of slavery. When the history of Trump is written I hope my descendants read the books to find out what the hell happened and make sure its not repeated.

I don’t plan to post all that much until I’m back from France in six months. I’m still working hard to learn French and read French history. I’ll just stick the occasional post to keep my eight loyal readers from falling asleep. The rest of my time will be devoted to selecting past posts that explain how America trumped itself.

Stay tuned.

Whatever happened…..My latest Not Eudora Column

Whatever Happened to the Magnificent Seven

Thanks to the Reader for the nice graphic.

It begins:

In 1966, at age 16, I discovered pop music which was then a witch’s brew of pop, country, and rock about to go their separate ways. One of my early favorites was a song by the Statler Brothers “Flowers on the Wall.” It was about a guy who was dumped by his girlfriend. In the lyrics the fellow claims not to mind “playing solitaire alone with a deck of 51.” Seven years later, after the horrors of 1968 and Vietnam, the Statlers – now confirmed red necks – sang a new song that pined for the days of rugged cowboy heroes. I couldn’t stand it. The lyrics and chorus began:

You can read it all here.

TUTORIAL ON A HARRY WELTY CAMPAIGN PART 6

I explained that long time West Duluth Representative Mike Jaros, would be the seed pearl of my next tutorial. But first let me check to see how many times over the last eleven years I’ve mentioned Mike on the blog……..Wow 95 times

The two posts which topped the list (prior to this entry) were “Bless you Mike Jaros” from 2015 and an earlier post from 2008 “Who will replace Mike Jaros.”

The 2008 post was the beginning of my unqualified support for Mike. He joined me in attempting to restrain the rapacious Red Planners and, like me, he failed. I made a personal vow never to undermine him again through any veiled criticism.

In one or more of the 95 posts I have described our first meeting back in 1976 when he agreed to meet me for coffee and despite our looming face off how we got along famously. Ever since my gold star seal of approval always begins with adversaries who are willing to sit down and palaver with me. That is a standard one of the other side’s candidates this year has badly botched this election. Not Sally Trnka. She met with me and, although I am supporting Dona Krivogorsky, I consider Sally a good soul. (I’ve not gotten round to inviting Josh Gorham for coffee although some of my allies have and that’s a good sign. I once told Rosie Loeffler-Kemp we should get together but her eagerness to censure me put a pretty cold damper on my former invitation and we’ve never had a one-on-one. I just get veiled lectures/threats from her at closed meetings about not blogging.

You see, I was raised in an Era of a genial, if intense, cold war between the two major political parties which have now fallen so out of favor. If you search for references to my Grandfather and Harry Truman you will see that I’ve said of my Grandfather that he had a grudging respect for Democrats. That is so unlike the current mood in political circles. From the outset of my political career that has been my chief modus operandi. I will not unfairly malign the other side. I will malign their actions or hypocrisy if the public ought to be appraised of it but the faults I point out must not get in the way of my being able to work with adversaires. As I’ve always said of school board candidates: “I’ve never met one who didn’t have the best interests of children at heart.” That includes the Red Planners of whom my chief criticism has always been that they were insensitive to the public, stubborn, self righteous and foolish. They still cared about kids…….although some of them have stooped to pretty despicable depths to mischaracterize the motives of their critics, like me and especially Art Johnston.

So, where does that leave me with regards to Tutorial 6? Simply here at the “Golden Rule,” the real golden rule not this one: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” I practice this with one proviso. “Beat me up once, shame on you. Beat me up a second time, watch out!”

TUTORIAL ON A HARRY WELTY CAMPAIGN PART 4

I RECOMMEND STARTING THIS SERIES WITH PART 1

As you might expect from a politician who keeps pointing out that he has written millions of words over the past eleven years of blogging about the Duluth Schools I simply can not be content with a content free list of candidates to vote for. I believe in presenting the evidence, making a case, using logic, telling a story.

So this is what you would find in my current lit package:

Firstly: Continue reading

Tutorial on a Harry Welty campaign Part 3

This is a close up of the front and back of my lit package for this campaign. I work very hard to make sure when I walk all the way to a front, back or side door that this package will be found quickly, in good order and tightly secured to the house.

I have packaged this envelope carefully so that both my last name and Dana Krivogorsky’s name appear on different sides of the package. As I continue going door to door the total package will change. When I go to Rosie Loeffler-Kemp’s first distict I will slip in the flyer for her competitor Kurt Kuehn (pronounced Keen).

Tutorial on a Harry Welty campaign Part 1

What follows is how I will either win or lose this election for the school board. It may end up being 7, 8, or 9 posts. I got three hours sleep and then woke up wondering how much more I would have to spend to guarantee the kind of campaign I’d like to end my career with (assuming that at age 66 this really will be my last campaign – a tall assumption that!)

So here a a couple of preliminaries because I’m just too fussy to KISS (keep it simple stupid.) Stuff about me:

A. My favorite comedian is Harry Anderson. You may remember him from the tv series “Night Court” where he played a judge. Before that he was a comic magician and I think he once made an appearance on SNL. (Ah, I see he did) As you will see from this video his schtick was to show his audience how his magic tricks worked. Then he would end up confounding them anyway. Heck, that’s what all my Internet stuff from 1999 on has been – an attempt to explain what I do…….and yet I still confound people.

B. My Mother who raised me to revere her politician father (for his war heroism) once told me on the outset of a campaign that she really didn’t want me to be a politician – such was her disdain for so much of politics.

C. I’m sure I could fill out the whole alphabet but lets go on to the next post:

MY FORTY YEARS OF DNT REPORTERS AND EDITORS

PLEASE UNDERSTAND THAT I WOKE UP IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT TO WRITE A FUND RAISING LETTER AND IT BECAME THIS EXTENDED STREAM-OF-THOUGHT PIECE ON MY EXPERIENCES WITH THE DULUTH NEWS TRIBUNE. PLEASE ALSO UNDERSTAND THAT I HAVE NO DESIRE TO TIDY ITS 1903 WORDS UP WITH A COUPLE PROOF READINGS. IT IS AND WILL REMAIN IN ROUGH DRAFT CONDITION PROBABLY FOR AS LONG AS THIS BLOG CAN BE FOUND ON THE WEB. BTW – I RECOMMEND SKIPPING IT AND CUTTING TO THE LAST PARAGRAPH.

I have had a long relationship with the News Tribune which began when I first ran against Mike Jaros as a 25-year-old in 1976. Continue reading

Vietnam, back home in Mankato

Tonight’s episode, yet to air, will carry the story of Vietnam up to 1969.

Last night got us to President Elect Richard Nixon. As the PBS series makes clear Nixon told a few people privately that there was no quick exit from Vietnam despite his campaign assurances that he was going to get that done and with honor and get it done quickly.

I was in my High School junior year during his second campaign for President. I’d been in fifth grade when he ran for President in 1964. I had energetic debates with my neighbor Becky Penney about who would win that election. Becky and her family were for JFK. My family was for Nixon. As a fifth grader it was all about family loyalty with me even though I had begged my Grandfather to go to Washington D.C.in 1961 to shake hands with JFK who had sent him an invite to the Rose Garden.

My Grandfather offered me only one compliment of sorts. That was when he learned I was going to become part of our high School Debate team. Having debated himself he said it was an excellent activity for me to pursue. Ironically, my research in Debate led me to learn about Nixon’s Checker’s Speech and questions about his harassment of suspected communists. I didn’t trust him. When my high school speech teacher assigned his students to give a speech in another class I chose a History class and gave a hearty endorsement for Hubert Humphrey.

Nonetheless, I entered College as an independent. A few year’s later it was liberal self-righteousness that drove me to the Republican Party even as I opposed the Nixon Administration’s war policies. (I gladly voted for George McGovern) I’ve always believed in putting my feet in other people’s shoes. Sometimes that has meant wearing a tennis shoe and a wingtip simultaneously.

My first college protest blocking Mankato’s Main Street and Front Street and seeing how angry it made people who weren’t callow college students I concluded that inconveniencing people was not the way to win them over.

So, in 1972 when hundreds of college students from MSU and some local thrill seekers decided to block Highway 169 I had no intention of joining them. (This was where the reporter mentioned in the Tecla Karpen post filmed all the beer bottles and debris that the protesters left behind.) What I didn’t know was that my Dad, who had railed at LBJ years earlier when he was sending more troops to Vietnam, thought I would be on the highway at the protest.

A few years ago I was sent a portion of MSU President James Nickerson’s memoir about the war years at Mankato State. I regret to admit that I can’t find it at the moment but he mentioned my Dad, Daniel Welty, who was then the President of the Faculty Union.

He related meeting with Governor Wendell Anderson’s top assistant, the controversial Thomas Kelm, with my Father and other faculty present. Nickerson wrote that the hard charging Kelm said he was going to call out the national guard and force the students off the highway. At this Nickerson explained that Dan Welty strongly objected saying something like, You can’t do that. My son is on that bridge.

I don’t blame my Dad. He had been worried since I’d been in junior high that I might end up in Vietnam, a war he thought was damned foolishness. And at this moment six year’s later, he had to worry that I might get the Kent State treatment. That’s where four protesting Kent State students were shot to death by young national guard troops in Kent, Ohio.

The troops were never sent to Mankato.

Vietnam, 1968 – PBS and me

I stuffed another thousand envelopes watching Sunday night’s return to Vietnam. It was about 1968 when I was in my last year of Debate at Mankato High and would switch over to being a Senior. I would drop debate because I wasn’t quite as dedicated as our teams survivors. Our coach was a misogynistic jerk who leered at girls in short skirts. Besides, I’d overcome my panic attacks and was drawn into the speech team’s story telling and our schools theatrics.

1967-68 was the year our family hosted an African student, Bedru, who unwittingly integrated the all white Mankato High. I was dating for the first time, tentatively and politely. I could drive the family car. College was a certainty two years off but even for a high school kid it was hard to keep one’s eyes off politics.

Last night’s PBS episode covered the basics that I was watching in my peripheral vision that seminal year. Martin Luther King was assassinated. (Ironically my Ethiopian roommate did not seem very moved by this. Perhaps he was used to being in a minority back home. BTW – I suspect that our family stopped hearing from Bedru a few years later after he was murdered as a political prisoner by his pro-American government.)

Bedru was however intensely interested in the Kennedy’s who stirred such hope across the third world. My intensely political father had us all up late to watch the California returns that would almost guarantee that his little brother, Bobby, would be the next president. Bedru, who was pulling for the younger Kennedy, stayed up even later than the rest of the family to watch the coverage from California after the results came in.

The next morning we discovered he had silently gone up to bed after watching Kennedy’s assassination.

Civil rights and Vietnam both came to a head in 1968 and I have many vivid memories from the events laid out in last night’s episode. For instance, my Dad’s shutting me up as I yammered questions just moments before Lyndon Johnson declared that he would not seek or accept the Democratic Party’s nomination for reelection. Its the only time I recall him ever shushing me.

I remember the riots that blazed across the nation after King’s assassination. The riot in Detroit has now been portrayed in a recent motion picture that I’d like to see. One took place in Baltimore. Three years later when I worked as a summer intern in Washington DC. I visited my friend Jim Zotalis in a suburb where he was an assistant in the Don Budge Tennis camp. I had just given him a tour of the nation’s capitol and he was reciprocating by hosting me. The drive into downtown Baltimore was a shock. I went through the King Riot zone and all the shops that had reopened in fire blackened brick buildings had heavy iron bars across the storefronts.

As for Vietnam, it was the fighting in the Tet Offensive that lasted a month in Hue that prepared college for me more than the other way around. A year-and-a-half later as a freshman I would see my first-and-only draft card burning and participated in a counter productive blocking of the downtown’s most important intersection. I’ve shunned self righteous crowds ever since.

I watched George Wallace, Richard Nixon and a bevy of Democrats vying for the job LBJ no longer had the fortitude to endure and that left me prepared for Donald Trump last year.

It was a helluva year.