The Free Press, Mankato, MN

August 23, 2013

Response to letter distorted issues


---- — Dan Conner’s Aug. 15 letter stated “in response” to mine of Aug. 10 (”Prioritize existing revenues before tax shakedown”) was replete with distortions, misrepresentations and misdirection.

I opined local conservatives were showing more “activity” in submitting articles to The Free Press opinion pages recently, better reflecting the area’s “political demographics” i.e the numerical balance between conservative and liberal residents. He twisted what I said into asserting I meant more conservatives were winning local elections.

After his false premise he continued off-track by saying had I bothered to check the Minnesota Secretary of State website I would have learned the DFL “swept” the local 2012 elections. To consult a government website about something I already knew, did not dispute, did not intend to and did not address in my article never crossed my mind — why would it?

When I referred to “...a few local tax and spend academics,...” he took my use of the word few out of context. Moreover, my observation “...and a sycophant retired federal bureaucrat” is obviously in the singular. He quotes me as using the plural bureaucrats. The only other local retired federal bureaucrat I know of who frequently contributes to The Free Press opinion pages is Tom Maertens. I do not consider Mr. Maertens a sycophant, i.e. a flatterer, or yes man to others opinions.

As the headline clearly indicates the central issues in my letter of Aug. 10 were tax increases and spending. No “response” to those. Instead he chose to go farther off topic and tell us voters were “smart” if they voted for his preferred candidates and/or issues. Possibly a fine topic for a separate article.

Bob Jentges

North Mankato