Mining and jobs on the Iron Range

Hull-Rust-Mahoning Open Pit Iron Mine, Mesabi Range, 2010 By Chipcity - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=21362665   What is the fate of mining in northeastern Minnesota? No one knows the answer but it’s clear that ferrous and non-ferrous mining won’t go away without fights. First, the StarTribune reported, The state signed off Thursday on … [Read more...]

Tom Swain and Minnesota since World War II

Trying to understand how Minnesota became “above average” since World War II is one of my intellectual passions.  I just finished Citizen Swain: Tales from a Minnesota Life by Tom H. Swain (with Lori Sturdevant) and came away with a much improved understanding on how Minnesotans accomplished this feat.  At the center of it was active civic engagement by men and women who moved between the public … [Read more...]

New research: returns to broadband investment

New Research: Returns to Broadband Investment

Should governments subsidize or build broadband networks? This question is being posed throughout the US; Brian Lambert summarizes the Minnesota landscape in “How the Legislature is cheating Greater Minnesota on broadband.” Economists aver that to answer this question, we need to know whether the rate of return to private businesses investing in broadband networks is less than or equal to the … [Read more...]