Shortened version of a very long story. Installed the 64 bit version of LMDE back in April. Very excited about the prospect of moving my production ops to the Debian edition for a number of reasons. The show stopper for me was that I could never get the blasted hibernation to work as advertised. Dinked around with a number of setting and config files as suggested in numerous posting here.
Finally this past weekend, decided as a last ditch to try a fresh install of the 32 bit version. This time, during the partition section of the installation, I specifically marked my swap partition as swap (didn't do it in the previous install as I assumed that the installer would pick up the swap automatically). After the initial slug of updates and dist-upgrades, the power management worked properly.
Have since re-installed the 64 bit version and am now heading off to install / configure servers and apps.
Identify the swap partition at installation.