Republicans a no-show at Emergency Manager forum in Ann Arbor

We’re sorry, the number you have dialed…

All photos by Anne C. Savage – used with permission

On Monday, February 6, 2012, the Political Science department at the University of Michigan held a public forum/debate on Public Act 4 – the Emergency Manager law. The panelists were Representative Jeff Irwin (D-Ann Arbor); Howard Ryan, Director of Legislative Affairs, MI Department of Treasury; Conan Smith, Washtenaw County Commissioner; and Dayne Walling, Mayor of Flint.

One chair was empty – the one that was supposed to have been occupied by Mark Ouimet, a Republican state Representative (my Representative, in fact.) He cancelled at the last minute saying his presence was required “a school board meeting”.…

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Racist Hoekstra ad reframes the conversation, but not how he wanted it to

Missed it by THAT much

Pete Hoekstra is nearly giddy about all the attention his racist ad had garnered.

Hoekstra, a former Republican congressman from Holland, stood his ground Monday, saying the ad did what he wanted: It drew a clear contrast between himself and Democratic U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow. […]

“We knew we were taking an aggressive approach on this, but we’re in a time when people are fed up with the spending and we wanted to capture that frustration,” Hoekstra said. “It hits Debbie smack-dab between the eyes on the area where she is most vulnerable.”

Let’s have a look at the headlines to see if he has, indeed, reshaped the conversation to talk about Debbie Stabenow’s spendthrift ways.…

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Is media group that produced Pete Hoekstra’s racist ad full of Democrats? (Updated)

Waaa-aaait a minute…

I hadn’t realized this until MaddowBlog retweeted me yesterday, but the media company that created the train wreck of a racist ad for Pete Hoekstra is the same company that did two other catastrophic train wrecks: the infamous “Demon Sheep” ad for Carly Fiorina in California and Christine O’Donnell‘s legendary “I Am Not a Witch” ad.

The creator is Fred Davis of Strategic Perception Inc. from California. When you consider the impact that these three ads have had in reshaping the conversation about these candidates into something completely unintentional, you really have to wonder: Is Fred Davis a Democrat???

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My “appearance” on First Shift with Tony Trupiano this morning

A face for radio…

If you are interested in listening to my Blog Roll segment on The First Shift with Tony Trupiano radi show his morning, click HERE.

We talked about a number of topics but mainly about my piece last week about the ticking tax time bomb in Michigan.


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BREAKING: Financial review teams leading to Emergency Mgr must comply with Open Mtgs Act

Score one for transparency

In a stinging rebuke of the Snyder administration, Ingham County Circuit Court Judge William Collette ruled today that review teams that are part of the lead-up to imposing an Emergency Manager on a city or school district must comply with the Open Meetings Act.

Ingham County Circuit Court Judge William Collette ruled this afternoon that state-appointed local financial review teams are public bodies that must comply with the Michigan Open Meetings Act. […]

State officials have maintained that these review teams do not have to comply with the Michigan Open Meetings Act.

Judge Collette agreed with the plaintiff in the case – Robert Davis, the board secretary of the Highland Park School District [who argued that] the state’s financial review team violated Michigan’s Open Meetings Act by holding private meetings, failing to post public notices for the meetings, and for failing to keep minutes of the meetings.

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More on (Moron?) Pete Hoekstra’s racist Super Bowl ad – UPDATED

You’re in a hole, Pete. Stop digging.

The fallout from Senatorial candidate and racist Pete Hoekstra and his offensive, xenophobic political ad continued unabated today.

Another GOP consultant, Mike Murphy, tweeted that the ad was “really, really dumb”. According the Washington Post, “Foreign Policy magazine managing editor Blake Hounshell called the ad ‘despicable.'”

Ironically, the ad, which seems to blame U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow for the outsourcing that is sending jobs over seas, was not produced in Michigan. Rather, it was made by media strategist Fred Davis of California-based Strategic Perception Inc.. In other words, he outsourced it to another state.…

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Obama administration freezes Iranian financial assets

Can you hear us yet?

The Obama adminstration took further actions in sanctioning the Iranian government yesterday, freezing their financial assets.

From his message to Congress:

I have determined that additional sanctions are warranted, particularly in light of the deceptive practices of the Central Bank of Iran and other Iranian banks to conceal transactions of sanctioned parties, the deficiencies in Iran’s anti-money laundering regime and the weaknesses in its implementation, and the continuing and unacceptable risk posed to the international financial system by Iran’s activities.

The order also implements section 1245(c) of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (Public Law 112-81) (NDAA) by blocking the property and interests in property of Iranian financial institutions pursuant to IEEPA.

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Forum on Public Act 4 to be held TONIGHT in Ann Arbor

Emergency Manager law under the microscope

Tonight, a community forum will be held in Ann Arbor on the subject of Public Act 4, the Emergency Manager law.

On Monday, February 6, from 6 to 8pm in the Eldersveld Room in the Department of Political Science (Haven Hall 5th Floor), the Undergraduate Political Science Association will host: “A Debate on the Emergency Financial Manager Law: Democracy, Expertise, and the Public Good in Financially Troubled Cities”. We often hear in public discourse that government ought to be run more like a business, with streamlined decision-making by expert managers being preferred over the more cumbersome ways of making decisions that are associated with democratic institutions.…
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