What more is there to say about the Franken-Coleman fight? How about that it’s now entered “Calista Flockhart territory.” Nate Silver at fivethirtyeight.com says it. Silver calculates that it’s costing Coleman about $145,000 a week, so it’ll cost about $817,000 to keep pushing this thing. He calculates whether it’s worth it. Meanwhile, media watcher Brian Lambert says the media should acknowledge the elephant in the room and say Coleman is taking one for the team. Is suicide a problem or not in Minnesota? Smart Politics, the U of M Humphrey Institute blog, conducted a study of state population density and suicide rates and determined that Minnesota has an “unusually low” suicide rate. “Nonetheless, Minnesota is fortunate to have one of the lowest suicide rates in the nation, and is second only to Illinois for the lowest rate among all Midwestern states,” it said. It used data from 2002.
Meanwhile, the National Center for Health Statistics, using 2004 data, says the state’s suicide rate ranks 13th with 10.1 suicides per 100,000 people. It says the state is 6th best in rates of depression.
Where it gets more interesting, however, is on the money spent on mental health. Smart Politics reports no other Midwest state spends more on mental health than Minnesota. But 5.9% of Minnesotans report they have unmet needs for mental health treatment and counseling. That’s worse than Iowa, Illinois, North Dakota, and South Dakota, and that’s the same percentage as Wisconsin.
Contrary to the assertion, however, suicide prevention efforts in Minnesota are not rolling in dough. Fans of The Current’s Mary Lucia probably are aware of her obsession with Phil Spector’s hair. Now, it’s all been documented . Much better, however, is an old New York Times tribute to his hair styles, including the “Marv Albert” and the “Doctor Who.” The Twins are going to have new uniforms when they move into Target Field next year. Here are some possibilities. It mentions the hated Twins script design. Why is that hated? In other uniform news: It’s been a long time since the Star Tribune sports department felt powerful enough to refuse to use the real name of the Cleveland baseball team, let alone use its logo. The Cleveland Plain Dealer says there’s evidence the team is moving toward ridding itself of the logo, if not the name. “The longer the winter, the sweeter the spring, and this winter seemed very long indeed,” writes painter Jeff Scher in the New York Times today. He produced a “welcome back” film for the greatest show on earth — spring.
WHAT WE’RE DOING
Midmorning – In the first hour, Kerri Miller and her guests discuss whether the nation’s airlines have long-term viability. In the second hour, long-time civil liberties advocate Nadine Strossen also talks about why she continues to fight for free speech.
Midday – House Speaker Margaret Kelliher and Senate Majority Leader Larry Pogemiller join Gary Eichten for a discussion about the legislative session and why we’re heading for a last minute showdown with the governor again.
Talk of the Nation – A new approach at some universities will require that your degree reflect a defined set of skills, rather than that you passed a defined set of courses.
All Things Considered – The news business’ obsession with the future of newspapers focuses today on the loss of arts critics. At some point, some of these stories are going to have to acknowledge that few people are reading newspapers. If a critic’s review falls in a forest…