Solar winds of change in U.S. industrial policy

Tell me if you’ve heard this one before. China invests untold billions into an industry before selling the product overseas at less than cost. That lets China capture global markets while driving competition out of business. You might think I’m talking about iron and steel, but today I’m talking about technology and renewable energy, fast-growing… Read More →

Companies crowd to mine newly viable West Range iron ore

Last week, I met someone who knew my writing and he was shocked to see that I was “young.” I put “young” in quotation marks because it’s a relative term. I think in this case he was really saying that he was surprised that I wasn’t old, because he figured I would be.  It’s true,… Read More →

Rolling dice on housing

The affordability we can’t afford

Americans like to argue, but seem to agree that we don’t have enough money. The median household income in St. Louis County runs just below $58,000 a year, about $30,000 for individuals. Half make less, and these folks certainly know how hard it is to cover rising expenses. Nevertheless, candidates who support publicly funded health… Read More →

Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox

De’myth’tifying Minnesota

A couple weeks ago I reviewed a new novel reframing the Paul Bunyan myth that still prevails in Minnesota tourism and culture. Today, I share a new essay for the Minnesota Reformer entitled “Paul Bunyan and the weight of myth.” This piece digs deeper into the Bunyan story and how it shaped the cultural perception… Read More →

How to cover politics in northern Minnesota, and other quandaries

One of my life’s most interesting relationships has been with the word, “journalism.” I’ve always considered myself a journalist, even after leaving daily newspapers 21 years ago. But the nature of that relationship changed with time and trends.  In college during the late 1990s, our journalism professor bemoaned “citizen journalism,” a reference to the idea… Read More →


This just in

Solar winds of change in U.S. industrial policy

Tell me if you’ve heard this one before. China invests untold billions into an industry before selling the product overseas at less than cost. That lets China capture global markets while driving competition out of business. You might think I’m talking about iron and steel, but today I’m talking about technology and renewable energy, fast-growing… Read More →