Eclectablog

About Eclectablog

Chris Savage is the owner and publisher of Eclectablog, your one-stop shop for progressive Michigan news and state & national political commentary.
Author Archive | Eclectablog

Well-connected, wealthy lawyer for big Republican donor gets “rare” pardon by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder

It’s good to be know the king…

Alan Gocha Jr., attorney for the maker of 5-Hour Energy drink got himself in trouble back in 2007 when he crossed the center line while driving drunk and landed in jail. He appealed the conviction but, after running out of appeals, decided to go for a gubernatorial pardon instead. This past week, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder gave Gocha that pardon, one of only 11 out around 750 requests he received. The pardon expunges the conviction from his record as if it never happened.

According to Russ Marlan, a deputy director at the Corrections Department who oversees the parole board, Snyder is focused on “potential pardons where the conviction was inhibiting them from advancing economically or was preventing them from getting a job or was preventing them from financial freedom — from moving past some obstacle in their life”.…

Read full story Comments { 0 }

Michigan Republicans: Teachers don’t need to be certified & education is to teach children to read the Scriptures

Ultra far right wing conservatives Todd Courser and Gary Glenn took steps this week that show beyond a shadow of a doubt that their views on education have more to do with people in the 18th Century than they do with any modern views on education today. In a Facebook post this week that he has since deleted, Courser describes our state’s education system as being run by “top down soviet style central planners” and says that the schools should be a “ministry of the church” to ensure that students can “read the scriptures” and not to prepare them for careers as adults.…

Read full story Comments { 0 }

Michigan ALEC meeting flops when (almost) nobody shows up

This past week, the corporatist front group and bill mill for corporate America, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), held a breakfast gathering for Michigan state legislators. Our friends at Progress Michigan were there and reported that only SIX legislators actually attended. Here is the all-Republican list of attendees:

  • Rep. Aric Nesbitt (R-Lawton)
  • Rep. Peter Pettalia (R-Presque Isle)
  • Rep. Triston Cole (R-Mancelona)
  • Rep. Tim Kelly (R-Saginaw)
  • Rep. Jim Runestad (R-White Lake)
  • Senator Mike Green (R-Mayville)

According to Progess Michigan, Sen. Green and Rep. Nesbitt are Michigan’s ALEC co-chairs and were listed on the invitation to the event.

As Progresss Michigan Executive Director Lonnie Scott explains, this is a hopeful sign that the Koch brothers-supported corporate lobby group is experiencing a drop in influence, at least in Michigan:

Even one ALEC enthused legislator can lead to horrible public policy.…
Read full story Comments { 0 }

My Planet Fitness post provokes a “rebuttal” from extremist right-wing “Christian” hypocrites

My post yesterday, “Anti-trans* woman uses Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to sue Planet Fitness for terminating her membership” (which I cross-posted at Daily Kos) provoked a response from the so-called “Christians” at RenewAmerica.com today.

The piece is written by Ellis Washington, a founding board member of Salt and Light Global, and is titled “Salt and Light Global targeted for defending woman expelled from Planet Fitness“. In it, he accuses me and Daily Kos of being “anti-Christian”.

Do Christians have religious rights?

Last Tuesday a DailyKos blogger whose penname is “Eclectablog” wrote an incendiary rant titled, Anti-trans* woman uses Michigan civil rights act to sue Planet Fitness for cancelling her membership.

Read full story Comments { 0 }

Michigan Republicans show how much they value education by increasing funding a whopping 1.6%

“Don’t tell me what you value, show me your budget and I will tell you what you value.” – Joe Biden

Michigan Republicans put forth their proposed education budget yesterday and, as you would expect, it shows just how little the value education in our state. After slashing education funding for years, they are back this year with a paltry 1.6% increase. Even Gov. Snyder’s budget almost hit 2%. And it’s not just the tiny increase that is the biggest slap in the face to those who value the education of our children and see it as an investment in our state’s future.…

Read full story Comments { 0 }

Anti-trans* woman uses Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to sue Planet Fitness for terminating her membership

Earlier this month I wrote about a woman in Midland who had her Planet Fitness membership cancelled because she spent her days in their gym warning anyone who would listen that Planet Fitness had a “No Judgment Zone” policy that permitted a transgender woman to enter the women’s locker room. Keep in mind that their locker rooms have private changing stalls and their toilet stalls have doors on them. But the presence of a “man” in the locker room was simply too much for Yvette Cormier who then returned every day the following week to “warn” women about Planet Fitness’s horrible policy of tolerance, inclusion, and acceptance.…

Read full story Comments { 0 }

GUEST POST: After Philip Levine: Who Will Speak for Workers Now? And is Anyone Listening?

Today’s guest post was written by my new friend Sally Tyler. Sally lives in Washington, DC. and is a public policy analyst for a national labor union, who spent time in Wisconsin in 2011, and who occasionally reads poetry.

She writes today about Philip Levine, a U.S. Poet Laureate who died last month. Levine is best known for his poems about laborers and the working class. As Sally writes, his loss is a loss to the labor movement as a whole.

Enjoy.
Philip Levine, U.S. Poet Laureate 2011-12, who died in February, said that he began writing poems about the people who worked alongside him on the line at Detroit auto plants in the 1950’s because they were “voiceless.” I think Levine would have probably admitted that workers were always saying something, but that not enough people bothered to listen.…

Read full story Comments { 0 }

Ruh roh, Raggy. Someone forgot to register TedCruz dot com.


Back when Pete Hoekstra was running against Rick Snyder for governor, Ben Padnos registered PeteHoekstra.com and proceeded to use it to support Hoekstra’s opponents in his gubernatorial and Senate campaigns. Padnos explained why he was doing it in January of 2010:

Here’s the ranking Republican Member of the House Intelligence Committee failing to do something as simple as registering his own .com domain name. It makes you think….you have to have some empathy for the Obama Administration and the Department of Homeland Security on how daunting the job of dealing with hundreds or thousands of terrorist threats every day…..you can see how one lunatic getting on a plane in another country can slip through the cracks…

The domain name, PeteHoekstra.com, has been available for a long time.

Read full story Comments { 0 }

First MI-07 poll has Gretchen Driskell up by 5 points over Walberg + Friday fundraiser

A new Inside Michigan Politics/Revsix/Change Media poll has Michigan State Representative Gretchen Driskell up five points over incumbent tea party Republican Tim Walberg in the 7th District Congressional race. The pollsters polled a sample of voters that was 30% Democrats, 36% Republicans and 34% Independents and Driskell came in with 42%. Walberg had 37% and 21% were undecided. The 5-point lead was just inside the margin of error. Driskell did particularly well among independents, 46-27%, an astonishing 19-point gap.

“The results are somewhat surprising, given the fact that Tim Walberg is a well-established, four-term incumbent, and Gretchen Driskell is unknown in big swaths of the district.…

Read full story Comments { 0 }

INTERVIEW (with photos) with one of Michigan’s rare married same-sex couples on their one-year anniversary

One year ago today, Anne and I spent an extraordinary day at the County Clerk’s offices in Washtenaw and Oakland counties, watching as some of the 300+ same-sex couples were legally married for the first time in our state’s history. You can revisit that day with us in the post (HERE) that we put up featuring many of Anne’s outstanding photographs.

We even got to see Judith Levy, the first openly-gay federal judge in the 6th Circuit Court perform the first ceremony of the day in Washtenaw County:

1st same-sex marriage in Washtenaw Cty being officiated by the 1st openly gay 6th Circuit federal judge Judith Levy pic.twitter.com/7UNJHUFcsE

— Chris Savage (@Eclectablog) March 22, 2014

As a follow-up to that day, Anne did an interview with Connie Greer and Diane VanDorn, two women from our hometown of Dexter who Anne had shadowed the day they were married to document their experience.…

Read full story Comments { 0 }
eXTReMe Tracker