Et Cetera …

Making big promises

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz, a Democrat, recently told a gathering of officials from outstate cities that he plans to boost local government aid to them by about $30 million. The pledge drew strong applause from city officials.

Residents of outstate cities certainly deserve to get back the money they pay in state taxes, in the form of lower local taxes or improved services. We just hope Walz is planning a commensurate reduction in overall state spending. Otherwise, he is just driving up future state government commitments, at a time when the government is already too big.

Shame on top of shame

One wonders if the Catholic Church will ever fully come to terms with, or recover from, the wide ranging sexual abuse that has occurred under its roof. With the church already reeling after decades of priests assaulting children (and bishops covering it up), we now learn that some priests and bishops also have been sexually abusing nuns. Pope Francis this week vowed to do more to tackle the problem.

The order representing all of the world’s female Catholic religious orders has publicly denounced “the culture of silence and secrecy” that abetted the problem. They are absolutely right.

Trump scores success

President Trump this week gave a well-received State of the Union speech that garnered approval ratings of about 75 percent in two instant polls by TV networks that cannot be said to be friendly to the president. That’s a pretty amazing feat for a man who tends to divide rather than unite.

Trump presented his ideas and plans with clarity and respect. He offered a compelling case for his agenda. This is admittedly different than the stinging Tweets or harsh rhetoric he uses more frequently. Will the President note the polls and learn from the experience? Don’t count on it.

Be ready for more snow

The city of Fairmont says it is seeing more cooperation from residents, who are doing a better job of getting their vehicles off the streets during snow emergencies. Not everyone is getting it right, but winter is going to create a few more opportunities to do so.

Snow emergencies kick in when there is 2 inches of snowfall. It’s just automatic. No declarations are made. No announcements. So residents need to be ready. Those who fail to move their vehicles off of snow emergency routes face fines of $50, or a possible tow.