THREE ISSUES | Iraq invasion, work and labor laws


Dan Pinotti, St. Paul resident and former teaching assistant at the University of Minnesota, talked to Forrester Pack by telephone about three concepts he’d like addressed in this election season.

FP: Hello, Dan. Would you tell us which issue is most important to you that you hope gets spotlighted in the state or national elections?

Dan Pinotti: I don’t know if they’d have the stomach to do it, but I’d like to see the reasons for the Iraq invasion revisited… [I feel that] Colin Powell, Condoleeza Rice, former Vice-President Cheney and former President Bush shouldn’t have a respected position in society. I don’t think its okay.

FP: Which aspects of their involvment in the ‘War on Terror’ would you like to see investigated?

Dan Pinotti: Well, the way the threat [of terrorism] was portrayed. A lot of people felt and still feel that there was manipulation [of the situation] by Vice-President Cheney. Powell himself brought about ‘so called evidence’ that a lot of turned out to be false. Norm Coleman… he hyped that war up a lot. In my view, how can you respect a lot of our nation’s institutions? Especially the press. They [in themselves] are almost a necessary evil.

FP: It sounds as if the the way the ‘fourth’ branch of goverment [the press] has been functioning, and its future, is of concern to you this election.

Dan Pinotti: To me, the media is as culpable for some events as the actual participants. I’m not sure if Mitt Romney or President Obama could [eventually] specifically legislate on the inaccuracies of our national press, but speeches have been completed regarding concepts like this. Former President Dwight D. Eisenhower did it [in his farewell address]… Jimmy Carter did it… a speech could touch alot of circles.

FP: Before the interview, we talked a little about workplace and labor situations you mentioned were key issues that should be highlighted this election. Care to elucidate?

Dan Pinotti: There are a lot of unfavorable labor laws. For instance, there are limited restrictions on how managment can direct workers’ hours. I got [verbal] verification of that talking to an official from the Department of Labor… I’ve felt that there is an eventual human cost to our rapid, unfettered work pace [of today]. Is it so much a part of society that one must hurry through work? I feel this could be harmful to the individual laborer. On the national level, this [labor laws] could be more aptly modified for the individual worker.


About the Three Issues articles: As we work on election coverage for 2012, one of our goals is identifying the issues that matter to people.  These articles come from one-on-one conversations about the election and what people think is important. “The election” could mean local, state or national level. If you’d like to contribute articles to the series, click here for more information