I’ll take 10 minutes of Dave over 60 minutes of Don

This has been out for a few weeks, but I thought I would post today right after I listened to Trump’s live CPAC speech. The one thing I have learned about either reading poetry, or philosophy or even political analogy is that less is more. Trump doesn’t understand this, but Chapelle does.

Sioux Falls City Council Agenda, March 2, 2021

Informational Meeting • Mar 2 • 4 PM

Presentations;

• Downtown Sioux Falls (DTSF) and South Eastern Council of Governments (SECOG) General Updates

• Tuthill Park House Project Status Update

Regular Meeting • Mar 2 • 6 PM

Item #6, Sub Items 17 & 42 totaling $466K to the Washington Pavilion in the form of boiler upgrades and cornice design. Ironically I just brought this up 2 weeks ago at the last city council meeting. While we throw money at the Pavilion like it is confetti we debate for months about the funding of a 100 year old institution. As for the cornice design costs, $250k is an atrocious amount of money to spend on design and further proof of the foolish ways the city spends its money. The rumor going around is the roof replacement will cost us $4 million.

Sub Item #20, Provide consultation and guidance in the areas of cultural
work, organizational alignment and strategy development Fees are established on a per project basis, $375/per hour fee, Dr. Trish Holliday. I’m guessing this contract is with this HR consulting company;

Trish is founding partner with Lucinda Kenning of the HR consulting company, Holliday│Kenning. Both partners are HR executives in the industry and provide leaders in the private and public sectors with an organizational playbook that focuses on growing leaders and driving performance. The Holliday│Kenning framework offers organizations and its leaders a Playbook with five distinct approaches (plays) that are critical for a winning workplace that attracts and retains top talent and drives cultural transformation.

While we know the city hires consultants, I find it troubling we have to hire a cultural HR consultant from Tennessee after Mayor TenHaken convinced the city council we needed a full-time Director of Culture. So what is her job? Rana DeBoer gets paid $117K a year to hire outside consultants to tell her what to do?

Item #34 & 43, 2nd Reading: AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF SIOUX FALLS, SD, ESTABLISHING THE TAX INCREMENT REVENUES TO BE COLLECTED AND AUTHORIZING THE PAYMENT OF TAX INCREMENT REVENUES TO SIOUX FALLS DEVELOPMENT FOUNDATION, INC., IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE DEVELOPMENT AGREEMENT FOR TAX INCREMENTAL DISTRICT NO. TWENTY-THREE, CITY OF SIOUX FALLS. I have no doubt that this will pass the council Tuesday night with at least 6 votes. I think there will be an attempt at amending the $30 million slush fund portion of it, but even if the amendment passes it will just be some kind of weak oversight commission. I have no doubt in my mind passing this TIF will send a very dangerous economic precedent in our city.

Item #41, 1st Reading: AN EMERGENCY ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF SIOUX FALLS, SD, TO REQUIRE FACE COVERING IN AN INDOOR PUBLIC PLACE WHERE 6-FOOT SOCIAL DISTANCING CANNOT BE ACHIEVED. The city council is looking to extend the mask mandate. It will be interesting to see if this passes in 2nd reading.

Item #42, 1st Reading: AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF SIOUX FALLS, SD, REPEALING ORDINANCE NO. 31-20 AUTHORIZING INTERIM REVISIONS TO CHAPTER 57 OF THE CODE OF ORDINANCES OF SIOUX FALLS, SD, PERTAINING TO THE NOVEL CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19). This is a repeal of the pointless emergency ordinance that required homeowners to bring their garbage cans to curbside for pickup. Of course, when this went into place it was about the safety of the garbage hauler workers, which I agree with, but the haulers never passed the labor cost savings onto the customers and many customers (mostly senior) have been complaining about hauling there cans to the curbside and getting NO discount to do so. I have no doubt this will pass 2nd reading, but the discussion or debate from the industry should be interesting, I’m sure they will respond with rate hikes, which furthers my argument that we need public garbage service.

Planning Commission • Mar 3 • 6 PM

Item 2 I, Initial Development Plan Amendment for Augustana, While no street closures are involved with the PUD yet, Augustana has been wanting to close Grange at 33rd so they can use the land as part of the campus.

Item 5 D, AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF SIOUX FALLS, SD, AMENDING THE CODE OF ORDINANCES OF THE CITY BY AMENDING CHAPTER 160: ZONING BY ADDING SUBCHAPTER ORIGINAL ART MURALS AND AMENDING SECTIONS 160.005 AND 160.578. It seems the city is finally prepared to except mural art on businesses. Someone must have told city hall that it is 2021 and not 1951. All joking aside, this is good and long overdue.

Face the Nation calls out Noem on the Sanctity of Life

Margaret nailed Kristi with this, “I know you are conservative and you care about the sanctity of life, so how can you justify making decisions that put the health of your constituents at risk?” Noem’s response was to ask other governors that question, even though Margaret reminded her several times that she was asking Noem the question, right now, since she was on the show (that’s kind of how interviews work).

We know the real answer to that question, Conservatives only care about you before you are born, once you are out, you are on your own.

Is the City of Sioux Falls Attorney’s Office telling us about ALL settlements?

As we heard recently, the city paid out $500K for the death of a toddler at Falls Park. We also know that the city has said in the past that they have pending lawsuits when it comes to the Bunker Ramp fiasco and the failed HVAC at the administration building. It would be nice to at least get an update as to where we are right now with them.

But according to city hall moles, the city came to a quasi-settlement with a contractor over a Sioux Falls Parks & Rec facility. I have my guesses what that settlement was and the said facility, but since I don’t know specifically from my sources the name, I will let you speculate.

But I asked this person, “If state law now dictates that settlements must be revealed, why hasn’t the city told the public?”

The response was, “First, the contractor was found liable, so they had to award the city for their failures and secondly it wasn’t a ‘cash’ settlement”

The rumor is the contractor had to fix their screw-up instead of paying the city to fix it with another contractor so no actual money was transferred.

So I guess the argument is the city doesn’t have to reveal this settlement because no money was exchanged.

I think that is a stretch;

Section 1-27-1.23 – Settlement agreements to be public records

An agency of the state or a political subdivision may not enter into a settlement agreement with a party to any civil action or proceeding involving a claim for monetary damages or equitable relief in which the settlement agreement requires nondisclosure or confidentiality of the terms of the settlement. 

So why is the city covering this up? Especially since the city, in this case, was awarded a settlement? I would think the city attorney’s office would love to tell the public about this win? Who are they protecting?

Noem’s lies at CPAC

Well, we all know that politicians like to fib a little to make themselves look good, it doesn’t matter what stripe they are from. But Noem really stretches the truth during her speech at CPAC today. Here are some highlights;

• She said South Dakota was the only state not to order businesses or churches to close or people wear masks. While there was NO directive from her office, cities across the state passed mandates on masks and businesses, and ironically those communities saw their cases drop.

• She said she didn’t define what an essential business is. But the CDC and Feds did, and so did several cities in South Dakota.

• She talked about keeping the schools open. While this is true, it had little to do with keeping them in the classroom it had to do with the lousy broadband and internet access across the state. Kudos to Mayor TenHaken for making this a recent priority in Sioux Falls. Once again local government has to step up to make up for her lack of leadership.

• She also took a dig at Dr. Fauci about how he was wrong about hospital capacity and how South Dakota managed it well. Quite the opposite, while we dodged a bullet, the major hospitals in the state had to transport patients out of state because of capacity issues, some dying later and many nursing homes became covid death camps. In fact one of the reasons South Dakota ranks 7th in the nation for deaths is because of the elderly deaths at nursing homes.

• She claims the media lied about how bad it got with Covid in the state. Remember because of the Smithfield outbreak due to the lack of the SD Department of Health, the Sioux Falls Department of Health and at first the CDC not mandating safe working procedures it was the number one hotspot in the nation. I also think if that outbreak didn’t happen, our Covid numbers probably would have been manageable. Her and Mayor Stoneless did eventually blame it on poor hygiene of immigrants. Noem seems to think the best way to achieve Liberty and Freedom is by doing nothing.

• She claims that our economy in South Dakota is booming. Sure, if you are rich. Instead giving the Federal Covid money to individuals or other Covid prevention and healthcare (like public vaccination sites), she handed it out to businesses, like CBD stores and Go-Kart tracks. Over 70% of South Dakotans make under a living wage and of that 70% many are living in poverty. State Government in South Dakota is booming because the Feds bailed out the state and she handed the money over to business owners that have NO intention of trickling it down to their employees. South Dakota has one of the highest number of working moms and people with more than one job.

• She continues to push the big lie about all the freedom and RIGHTS we have in South Dakota, yet Noem won’t tell us how she spends our money on things like security and plane trips, her and the legislature continue to try to overturn the will of the voters when it comes to the initiative process or the right to have an abortion, she has dismantled regulation that would keep our waterways safe from CAFO’s and runoff, we also have very few worker rights or proper safety regulation and when she had an opportunity to extend special unemployment benefits to South Dakotans she said ‘No Thank You’. As I told someone the other day, we have so much FREEDOM in South Dakota, it may just kill us.

• She also says the only way to change things in this country is by electing conservative leaders. As I pointed out before the November election, we tried a Republican Senate and President the last four years and NOTHING was accomplished, except more division, chaos, racism and a crumbling healthcare system. If this is your idea of great leadership from conservatives you really need to see a shrink. More of the same isn’t the answer, I think almost 80 million voters sent that clear message.

• She finishes by telling her famous BS story about how she took over the family business and turned it around. She never finishes the story by telling people the millions in farm subsidies she has received from you and me, the taxpayers.

Kristi may fart some lines at this get together about the greatness of conservatism, but secretly she is one of the biggest socialists in the Republican Party never missing an opportunity to handout taxpayer funded welfare to herself and her big business supporters in the state while keeping the rest of us in the gutter.

Blame it on the Diet Coke

Governor Noem’s Hypocrisy is Astounding

The Radical Right Wing Fascist Authoritarian Republican’t party is alive and well in the governor’s office in Pierre. In true Trumpian style ‘Do as I say, not as I do, and when caught, lie, lie, lie.’ Noem has learned well from her mentor in releasing the videos of Ravnsborg and now a judge says No way Jose. I kind of wondered how they could be released before his hearing?

While Noem is correct Ravnsborg should resign (for multiple reasons, mostly because he is dumber than spit) I find it ironic how she enjoys throwing rocks at her glass house. Noem has refused to give TRANSPARENCY on her security costs and air travel while stumping for one of the worst modern presidents (besides Reagan) in the history of our nation. She continues to lie about her Covid response (7th highest state death rate in the nation), lie about how many actual jobs would be produced by a pipeline that hasn’t even been built yet (or ever will be), blames the Covid outbreak at Smithfield on dirty immigrants and cries about fireworks (I’m sure if Haaland is confirmed she will put a stop to that on sacred native land) and continues to overturn the will of the voters over recreational marijuana. To call her a raging hypocrite would be a monumental understatement.

She says Jason should have ‘integrity’ and face the highest level of scrutiny and transparency when it comes to his accident. Yeah, Kristi, he should, BUT SO SHOULD YOU! I think it is pretty obvious your jet setting all over the country because you dream of being Trump’s Palin in 2024 was questionably legal.

Noem has continued the divisiveness of the past 4 years and has made it worse by covering up her own indiscretions with the same old tired lies about the fictional sect they call the ‘Radical Left’. The only radical that exists lives in the Governor’s mansion and she gets nuttier by the day, I’m expecting her to turn into a jar of peanut butter here pretty soon.

Noem enjoys the Ravnsborg distraction, because if you believe the gossip hounds in Pierre, Noem may have a lot of explaining to do about her Trump Travels that have very little to do with campaign stops, airplane trips and security expenses. I take most of these rumors with a grain of salt that have been circulating for months, but if even half of them are true, Noem may be secretly hoping all of her constitutional officers were web surfing while driving in the ditch, because she is going to need one Hell of a distraction to splain this one away.

The $15 an hour Minimum Wage is a Joke!

While some may be surprised that I do not support it, it is for other reasons. It should be $18-20 an hour and it should take affect within two years with four 6-month steps. There should also be an automatic inflationary COLA every year.

If they pass a Federal $15 an hour minimum wage, it won’t take fully affect until 2025. What’s the point?!

There is also a lot of misinformation out there about how this will kill businesses and cause mass unemployment. Not the case, when states have raised their minimum wages they did see an initial hike in unemployment, but in low wage jobs, after a year they actually saw economic growth and the GDP in the state rising. Believe it or not, when you pay people more, they spend more, and it helps the economy. What an amazing concept!

You also need to understand that this only affects large businesses who participate in interstate and international commerce. Like Walmart or Amazon. Ma an Pa’s Ice Cream Parlor in Bumf’ck Indiana won’t have to pay those wages.

And now for the obvious reasons this is the right thing to do. The large corporations who can afford an $18 an hour minimum wage, CAN AFFORD THE WAGE. They make Billions while paying very little Federal income taxes then turnaround and expect the very taxpayers who do pay their taxes (us) to subsidize their low-wage workers in the form of Medicade, SNAP and and housing. It was once estimated that because of the low wages Walmart pays its workers, EACH store costs taxpayers $1 million a year in worker subsidies. Why not just pay workers a living wage?

The upside is a boon in economic growth because instead of the top 1% sitting on all the wealth in our country, the workers would be spending it!

I guess I have never understood the argument that we need to starve workers while the top 1% sit on loads of money they will never be able to spend. It’s NOT a socialistic concept, it’s just good economics.

If you think a Meatpacking Plant is a great place to work, watch this

I have argued a long time it is time to get rid of our craphole owned by Chinese Communist investors, and retrain the workers in ecologically safe manufacturing jobs.

UPDATE: South Dakota Attorney General Ravnsborg should resign

The state releases Jason’s investigation interview videos. I have to admit when I wrote the original post on Sunday Afternoon, I never thought Sh!t would hit the fan come Sunday Night. Not sure if they will garner the 2/3 vote to boot him out. I have a feeling this really isn’t about Jason, but more about Noem wanting to replace him with a minion that will do her bidding.

VIDEO LINKS HAVE BEEN BROKEN

Since this seemed to be the biggest news story of all time on Thursday I figured I would take a couple of days to process my thoughts.

It’s pretty simple when you look at the facts of the case and the 5 month investigation, Ravnsborg likely broke the law (he is charged with 3 counts) and as our top law enforcement official in the state he should resign. He should also have his law license at least suspended for 2-3 years.

I know Noem has been chomping at the bit to replace him with an appointment she could lead around like a show pony but that speculation shouldn’t factor into the fact that Jason drove off the road illegally and killed someone.

I keep coming back to one word ‘integrity’ and as an elected official the only way to have this is by doing the ethical thing and resign, and that is really in his hands. The legislature will likely not take action, mostly because they are fascist cowards that don’t have the courage of a prairie dog. The SD Bar Association will likely not take action because in situations like this they usually circle the wagons.

A few years ago one of the Assistant City Attorneys for Sioux Falls who represents the SFPD was charged with a DUI and plead guilty to the charge, not only did he keep his job and received no punishment from the city, he has kept his post as the SFPD advisor and the SD Bar Association took no action.

It’s called the good old boy network.

While I agree SD laws are lax and it has probably been hard for the prosecution to charge him with much more, I do have concerns about how we came to this, and think the family of the victim have an incredibly strong civil case.

• Prosecutors gave us few details about questioning Jason and what his answers were about that night. Why is this?

• While they argue he didn’t receive special treatment in the prosecution, he certainly did with no investigation or toxicology test given the night of the accident. Heck, they didn’t even look for a body and the sheriff borrowed him his car. I also take issue with a 5 month investigation. If you ever go and read these accident reports from other cases in our state the results are usually given within 24-48 hours. There is no doubt in my mind that this long, extra thorough investigation was because he was receiving special treatment. It takes 5 months to determine someone drove into the shoulder of the road?! Give me a break.

• While the timeline is murky, about a month or so ago Jason told the media he was ‘innocent’ and didn’t commit any crimes. He knows this was untrue. I hope this comes up in his initial hearing for 3 counts.

I think Jason is going to fight the charges which I find baffling, because he really should be doing only two things, resigning and pleading guilty.