Looking back on my Reader Columns as I put a book together

NOTE This comes from 10:30 PM – I have been organizing materials all day and I just discovered a trove of documentation I’d forgotten about. Its part of the material Claudia Threatens to toss if I kick the bucket first. I discovered a correction to my 2002 campaign against Tom Huntley. I didn’t run against him in 2002. I ran against him in 2000. I ran against the more formidable State Senator Doug Johnson whose sprawling Iron Range District sprawled into the eastern third of Duluth after the 2000 census. In the second post after this I’ll talk about my papers which are trembling at the Prospect that Claudia will get to them before my archivists.

As I’ve been putting a book together for a Congressional campaign I got sidetracked this morning looking back at old Reader Columns. I think of myself as a regular for the Duluth Reader but their are vast gaps in my offerings.

I wrote about 140 columns from 2002 until 2008. I was surprised that I continued writing without stopping for my campaign for the State House against Rep. Tom Huntley. I had remembered pausing to campaign but I guess I stuck close enough to school board issues and miscellanea I didn’t cross the line too far. but I did paus during the summer of 2006 when I filed to run against Congressman Jim Oberstar.

I did return until 2007 but I was so busy fighting the School Board for the public’s right to vote on the Red Plan I only seem to have published 4 columns that year when I’d been averaging 25 (one every other week) for the five years preceding that. I was back up to 24 in 2008 prompted by starting with a ten column recap of the Red Plan fight.

But in the following years I picked up daily accounts of my battle over the Red Plan and my new outlet was my blog which I could update daily. In 2009 and 2010 I was waging a court battle against the School Board and from 2009 – 2112 I didn’t contribute a single column. I probably missed it because I submitted 2 columns in 2013 when I once again ran for the school board. I had turned in 4 columns in 2007 when I also ran for the Board against Judy Seliga.

I was content to write in my blog while I served on the School Board again from 2015 – 2017 where I was in constant battle with Board members in large part because they were at war with a fellow named Art Johnston. There were no Reader columns those years either except for one defending Art when the Board tried to remove him. For that I got censured although the board members found another excuse for it.

I was content to take on Donald Trump in my blog but by 2018 I returned to the Reader because of the national emergency Trump brought about. I’ve contributed another Trump heavy 140 columns in the Trump Era. It was going through columns critical of Trump that I stepped back to reevaluate all my work.

I’m glad I did. One column reminded me of reasons I stepped away from the Republicans for a while:

From Damned if you Do

It begins: Today at the Education committee I discovered that, because the Duluth Schools have done so well teaching our youngest students to read, Minnesota ’s Republican Administration has told us that we are no longer eligible for a “reading” grant to help our students. Yet, under the Republican game plan for education if our students had done poorly the state would have taken our revenue away and given our students vouchers to attend private schools. We are damned if we teach our children well and damned if we don’t.

It wasn’t the only old column that reminded me how full my earliest School Board work could be. The year I stopped campaigning for the School Board I wrote another heavy column. I’m including it in full in the next post.

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