Xcel, STOP IT!

August 26th, 2010


It’s one of those mornings, had a long bath in the bestest tub in the world, then got the doggies fed and out and pooped, and ready to commence work, fired up the machine, got maybe two emails opened and suddenly… SILENCE and DARKNESS (it’s dark on the side of a bluff).  No computer, no light, no ceiling fan… There goes Xcel again, they know I’ve got work to do, and they sent out their terrorist army.


NOT… it was a squirrel.  Alan hear the fuse on the distribution pole across the street go, and saw something drop, I said, “it’s a squirrel.”  Damned if it wasn’t a squirrel he saw fall, a brave soul who gave is life to Xcel to bring everything to a halt this a.m.  Power is back.  And neener, neener, neener, neener, Xcel, I got to office in Prestigious West Red Wing withwireless, Greek Strata and unlimited coffee.


I remember when Joan Ericksen was appointed to the Minnesota Supreme Court.  At that time, we were in the throes of fighting Target in Northfield, and her parents, Claire and Gerald Ericksen were so tickled and proud.  At that time, I thought that she was a good choice.  Later, she was appointed to the 8th Circuit Federal Court, appointed by none other than George Bush with the blessing of then Sen. Norm Coleman.   Is that really the same Joan Ericksen?

Now I’m having third and fourth thoughts…

Today I saw the STrib’s report of the City of Minneapolis settling on the “Zombie” case, and it triggered a recollection of another recent case Erickson had tossed out — one of the RNC raids suits.

Here’s today’s report on the “Zombie” case:

Minneapolis will pay $165,000 to zombies

In the “Zombie” case,  Judge Joan Ericksen had tossed out their suit against the City, which was remanded by the Federal Appellate Court.  Here’s the Appellate remand:

Baribeau v. City of Minneapolis 578-F.Supp. 2d, 1201-1224 (Minn. 2008)

… and remembered that it was Judge Joan Ericksen who also recently tossed out a suit by one of the RNC defendants whose home had been raided the day before the start of the convention:

Federal judge throws out lawsuit over RNC police raid

August 10, 2010

St. Paul, Minn. — A U.S. district court judge has dismissed a lawsuit by a St. Paul man who sued police officers for entering and searching his duplex a day before the Republican National Convention in 2008.

Michael Whalen alleged in his lawsuit that police violated his First and Fourth Amendment rights when they searched the St. Paul duplex he owned. He also argued that their search warrant contained incorrect information.

But U.S. District Judge Joan Ericksen dismissed the lawsuit by granting a request for summary judgment from the defendants. She wrote in her ruling that none of Whalen’s claims had any legal merit.

I don’t have time today to dig any deeper, but when I get around to it, I’ll post more about her record.  What I’m seeing here, though, is very disturbing… but these two dismissals really shouldn’t be a surprise given she’s a Bush appointee.

How uptight can they get?

The R’s sure have been hilarious at times:


… and…


… and…



August 20th, 2010

Learn something every day… there’s a day and night relay going on right now along Hwy. 35 in Wisconsin, it’s called the RAGNAR Relay.  They run day and night in teams doing a relay until they’ve made it from Winona to Minneapolis or drop dead in the process… Check this route:



As inevitable as the tide, the Minnesota winter snows, mosquitos, death and taxes…  This is way too predictable!  Charlotte Neigh, of Citizens Against the Mesaba Project, is dead on again with her trajectory of Excelsior Energy’s weaseling out of their financial responsibilities in this Mesaba Project boondoggle.  A deadline is approaching where Excelsior Energy has to make a payment on its financing from the Iron Range Resources Board:

MCGP Exhibit 5023 – IRR & Excelsior Convertible Debenture Agreement


A little birdie just sent this, literally hours after Charlotte had mentioned that the next payment was coming due and wondering what they were going to pull this time to get out of it (it’s ALWAYS something):

Published August 18 2010

Excelsior asks for more time to repay Iron Range loans

Excelsior Energy’s plans to build a coal gasification power plant known as the Mesaba Energy project on the Iron Range have suffered numerous delays.

By: Steve Kuchera, Duluth News Tribune

The Iron Range Resources Board will consider a request Thursday to give Excelsior Energy more time to pay back nearly $9.5 million in loans.

Excelsior’s plans to build a coal gasification power plant known as the Mesaba Energy project on the Iron Range have suffered numerous delays.

“Development plans originally contemplated that the project would have been under construction prior to 2010 and repayment would have begun,” IRR Commissioner Sandy Layman wrote in a memo to board members requesting the extension of the loan and delay in interest payments. “Sufficient funds are not available to meet repayment requirements under the existing loan terms at this time.”

The IRR has two outstanding loans with Excelsior: one for $1.5 million approved in December 2001 and one for $8 million approved in June 2004. Excelsior has paid back $45,038 of the loans’ principal.

If approved, the new loan agreement will require annual principal payments of $100,000 due Dec. 31 beginning this year and running through 2017. Interest on timely payments will be figured at 5 percent for the preceding 12 months. With IRR approval, Excelsior can repay all outstanding principal before Dec. 31, 2017, at a reduced interest rate.

In exchange, Excelsior would agree to pay the IRR 5 percent of the proceeds from any sale of equity in the Mesaba Energy project in excess of Excelsior’s liabilities from the project.