These last couple years, I've had a recurring thought: why can't anybody with a lot of money just do nothing with it? It seems like everyone, deserving or undeserving, who's had the kiss of fortune on their life wants to be a leader. They want to tell the rest of us how to live. Nobody asked, but they feel like they have some wisdom to impart on us.
Most cities don't do this, but for nearly a century the New York City Police Department has tipped off photographers nearly anytime anybody interesting has found themselves being taken to the station in handcuffs. It's called the "perp walk."
This week, the Minneapolis Charter Commission will consider a new citizen proposal. The charter commission is similar to a constitutional convention in that it considers petitions and ideas to change the City's charter. Only a ballot question or 13-0 vote in the City Council can change the charter, but the charter commission acts as a first step of the process. Anyone can submit something by gathering enough signatures on a petition.
This weekend, one of the world’s youngest hedge fund managers was here in Minneapolis. He was tweeting to his more than 100,000 followers about the city, its people and his investigation into the city. His Twitter account has since been suspended. I kinda like finance, Minneapolis, its people and investigations, so I emailed him from my Minnesota Daily email and left my phone number.
A couple weeks ago, I wrote a column about a recent report on financial aid that was to be presented at the Board of Regents February meeting. The report was informative, and I am glad our regents got to hear it, but my column took issue with it. I argued the report was too self-congratulatory and overlooked how bad tuition and financial aid are at the University of Minnesota.
At its monthly meeting on Thursday, the Board of Regents will hear the presentation for and discuss a report entitled, "Holistic View of Student Financial Burden." I stumbled on it while skimming the board's docket. I'm very glad I did — even if going through its pages of facts and figures lowers my heart rate into near-slumber — because it feels like it could be the Museum of University Cluelessness' main exhibit in its overflowing "Financial Aid Collection."
Our generation's loneliness and its causes have become something of a meme. Magazines have done big, serious stories about my generation's use of smartphones. Scientists have raced to run studies on how social media and technology have affected us — a solid 15 years after our addiction set in. Newspaper editorials and columns beseech us for not being social like we used to be.
As our University goes through a transition period between President Eric Kaler and incoming president Joan Gabel, students, faculty and administrators — everyone who makes the University what it is — are thinking long and hard about what they want the University to be in coming years.
In law enforcement, community and community-oriented policing have become somewhat buzzwords. Their sudden spike in use makes you wonder — was the community not involved in policing before? But the word is here to stay, and the last few years have given us a perfect opportunity to watch as the men and women of police departments, mayor's offices and city councils have wrestled with the idea in the chambers of the stately city halls and the pothole-stricken streets of Minneapolis.