Facebook’s soap box (5×8 – 11/9/10)



Here we go! The National Labor Relations Board has filed a complaint against a company for firing a woman who criticized her boss on Facebook. This is the first time the NLRB has asserted that what you write on a social network is protected speech.

“This is a fairly straightforward case under the National Labor Relations Act — whether it takes place on Facebook or at the water cooler, it was employees talking jointly about working conditions, in this case about their supervisor, and they have a right to do that,” Lafe Salomon, the board’s general counsel told the New York Times.

The act prohibits employers from punishing workers who complain about working conditions.


A Cloquet man shot two deer on Saturday’s opening day of the deer season. He did it with one shot.


Which is more disconcerting: That someone launched a missle in the Pacific yesterday? Or that nobody seems to know who launched it?


Some people in Texas slept out overnight; they want to be the first to buy George Bush’s memoir. This will, no doubt, reignite the debate over Bush’s legacy which features observations on both sides we’ve heard a thousand times before, but which might fill the gap in the lives of some people who are in election campaign withdrawal and haven’t been able to have a polarzing debate for almost a week now.

Bush’s critics aren’t ready to — to coin a phrase — move on. They want bookstores to move his autobiography to the “crime” section. That ignores, of course, that most bookstores don’t have a crime section.

Salon has 12 takeaways from Matt Lauer’s interview with Bush. This one is the weirdest:

Barbara Bush suffered a miscarriage when her son was a teenager, and afterward opted to show the fetus, which she was storing in a jar, to her then teenage son. Bush considers the incident key to his pro-life stance, telling Lauer “there’s no question that affected me, a philosophy that we should respect life.”

A jar?

Stephen Hess of Brookings says the Bush family is as close to a royal family as we’ve got in the U.S., something they once said about the Kennedys.

Here’s the full interview:


Apparently, quite a few members of the Somali community in the Twin Cities figured that there was a prostitution ring operating within it. According to a story from MPR’s Laura Yuen:

Somali-American community members tell MPR News that pimps have been known to approach men in the parking lots of Somali malls and restaurants in Minneapolis. They say the men would offer young girls for as little as $20.

Abdulkadir Sharif said he couldn’t believe his ears when a man at a cafe asked him if he wanted in.

“One person asked me, ‘You want a prostitute tonight?’ Which sounded really ridiculous to me. I told him, ‘You should be ashamed of yourself. To sell our own sisters is not acceptable,'” he said.

But several Somalis in Yuen’s story said they were unwilling to talk about it for fear of reprisal.

On the day after an indictment was unsealed that charged 29 Somalis in the alleged prostitution racket, it’s clear the prostitution of 13 year olds is the mere tip of the iceberg of Somali gangs.

Still unclear, however, is why federal authorities in Tennessee — not Minnesota — are the ones who got to have the news conference announcing the indictments.

Says Ruben Rosario in the Pioneer Press says the case apparently started in St. Paul:

For some reason, Tennessee “apparently agreed or were given the go-ahead to go after it,” said a veteran law enforcement source in the office. “I would think such a case involving young girls from here would be a priority, but for some reason, we’re not doing it. No question, some of us are embarrassed by this.”

Bonus: The story behind the trick football play (which I posted yesterday afternoon):A kid in middle school has a moustache?

(If the video doesn’t work for you above, go here)


When George W. Bush left office, only about a third of Americans approved of how he was performing as president. How has your opinion of George W. Bush changed in recent years?


Midmorning (9-11 a.m.) – First hour: The American economy’s slow recovery is testing small community banks which are continuing to fail. Larger banks were bailed out w/ TARP, but some experts argue that their “too big to fail” image puts small banks at a competitive disadvantage.

Second hour: Writer Eugene Robinson grew up in a segregated world, and as a writer for the Washington Post he has witnessed the evolution of the black community in the years since the Civil Rights movement. But he argues that despite integration the progress made by many black Americans has not been shared by all, and that the problems of poor blacks are more intractable than ever.

Midday (11 a.m. – 1 p.m.) – First hour: The two new DFL minority leaders in the House and Senate for 2011– Sen. Tom Bakk and Rep. Paul Thissen.

Second hour: Health care reporter Ceci Connolly, speaking last week at the Univ. of St. Thomas about the health care law and what Congress may do to change it.

1 p.m. Live coverage of GOP gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer’s news conference. (First hour of Talk of the Nation is pre-empted)

All Things Considered (3-6:30 p.m.) – The Twin Cities media market just got treated to the most expensive House race in the country, as well as a gubernatorial race. TV and radio stations got a big jolt in ad spending in the middle of a bad economy. But the boon wasn’t as big as they expected because third-party expenditure groups weren’t dropping as much cash as was hoped. MPR’s Annie Baxter will have the story.

  • Noodles


    The first thing they teach students in hunter safety is to know your target AND BEYOND. Perhaps this gentleman could use a refresher before he ends up with something other than another deer behind his intended target.

  • Bob Collins

    The article says he saw both deer, but he decided to shoot the larger one.

  • BJ

    No Crime section in a bookstore, whats a bookstore.

    I kid. I know what bookstores and librarys are, trust me.

    My wife has read (the last time I looked, August maybe) over 60 books this year. She is keeping a log of all the books she reads in a year. One of my facebook friends bragged about reading 20-30 books last year, I said I bet you read 50. She thought that sounded about right. After we looked around the house relized that she bought about 50 last year.

  • Jeanne

    I’m actually interested in reading Bush’s book (maybe getting it from the library or reading it at the bookstore, not interested in contributing any further to his wealth).

    In President Bush’s interview with Matt Lauer he downplays there ever being a competitive nature between himself and his father. I question that. Jeb was supposed to be the ‘chosen one’ and I think (unfortunately) we got the one with the lesser skills for governing.