Michigan Dems in the minority: finding new ways to have a voice & an impact

I have a piece up at A2Politico this week that talks about how Democrats in the Michigan legislature are finding ways to have a voice in our state despite their minority status. Using the example of the “anti”-bullying bill passed by Senate Republicans earler this month, I show how they managed to impact a similar bill that was passed by the House last week.

The change in this bill when it went from the Senate to the House caught my attention. For the past year, Democrats have been essentially without power in our state. They control the Governor’s & Lt. Governor’s offices, the Attorney General’s office, the State Supreme Court and, of course, both houses of the Legislature.…
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Mich GOP Senate contender on the wealth gap: “I think it should be wider”

Here’s how the GOP rallies “the 99%”:

In regards to the Occupy Wall Street movement, [GOP Senate candidate Clark] Durant said the protesters should “go find a job.” In regards to the wealth gap the movement decries, Durant said, “I think it should be wider.”

Get a job, hippy! Too bad there aren’t jobs available. As I recently pointed out, the ratio of job seekers to jobs available on the Michigan Talent Bank website is 16:1. The fact that there simply aren’t enough jobs out there for people looking for work is acknowledged by state staff at Michigan Works:

Andrew Stone, employment and training manager at Michigan Works in Muskegon and Oceana counties, said the job search agency will hold nine weeks of workshops in October and November about the basics of finding and keeping a job.…
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Michigan Democratic Party’s “Engage Michigan” conference engages Dems’ ears – and not much else

This past Saturday, the Michigan Democratic Party held their “Engage Michigan” conference. It was billed as a “chance to have your say as we discuss everyone’s ideas for forging a stronger, more prosperous future for Michigan.”

It was anything but.

Let me start this off by saying I did not want to write this entry. I wanted to write an entry talking about how delighted I am that the MDP has finally gotten their groove back and their mojo working and is ready to move forward with implementing a new approach based on feedback from Democrats across the state. It’s well-known that I have been down on the state party leadership and their apparent lack of interest in and promotion of grassroots-level activism that is currently motivating most Democrats in our state and, indeed, across the country.…

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Social forum on Working People’s Power + Occupation Teach-In coming to Ann Arbor

Two events this week for folks interested in the We Are the 99%/Occupy movement.

The Washtenaw Community Action Team (WCAT) (part of the We Are the People Michigan coalition), Occupy Ann Arbor and Occupy UM will jointly hold a pair of events this week that address the Occupy movements and how local labor, students and community members can get involved to rebuild political power for working people.

EVENT #1

What: Social Forum on Working People’s Power

Where:Kalamazoo Room of Michigan League

When: Tuesday, November 15, 2011 – 7:00-9:00pm

The forum is the culmination of a two-month, two part film series The Power of Working People held at 4 locations in Ypsilanti and Ann Arbor.

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Michigan Nurses hold townhall mtgs for Camp & Upton…since they won’t hold their own

The Michigan Nurses Association are the cutting edge of activism once again. Check out their latest events (and, yes, YOU are invited):

Since Rep. Camp Won’t Hold Citizens Town Hall, Nurses Will Do It For Him on Monday
Monday’s event gives citizens opportunity they’ve been denied by supercommittee member

MIDLAND – Since Congressman Dave Camp of Midland has denied multiple requests to hold a public town hall to listen to residents’ input about the decisions he will make on the supercommittee, members of the Michigan Nurses Association will do it for him Monday evening.

While failing to hold a public town hall for his constituents since his appointment to the supercommittee – including this week, while Camp was home during the congressional break – Camp has collected hundreds of thousands of dollars for his re-election campaign from Wall Street corporations and special interests.

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Photos from memorial of Ace the pit bull from Detroit

Here are still photos taken by my wife Anne C. Savage during last night’s memorial for Ace the pit bull from Detroit. Ace was reported to have been euthanized yesterday despite a court order NOT to. Click any photo to see more and larger versions at Anne’s blog. I encourage you to read her commentary on this situation. Here’s a snippet:

I know the stray animal problem that exists in Detroit and in most cities is not an easy problem to fix and it may never be completely corrected. However, what I do know is that this problem involves living, breathing things that suffer like all of us.…
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Memorial for Ace the pit bull in Detroit

Here is video from tonight’s memorial for Ace the pit bull from Detroit (backstory HERE.)

About 150 local pet rescuers and animal lovers showed up to mourn the passing of Ace who was euthanized by the Detroit Animal Control staff. Based on the way things have played out, it seems pretty clear that Ace was actually euthanized almost immediately after entering the shelter and the DAC staff have been covering it up ever since. Ace was supposed to have four days before he was put to sleep (by law), but nobody had seen him once he entered the facility and, when the owner came forward to reclaim him, she was shown an entirely different dog than first seen in the photos.…

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Ace the pit bull from Detroit has been euthanized

From Fox News Detroit:

A story people around the world have been following involving a pit bull who was found lost, alone, and hungry — at a hardware store, over the weekend.

He was nick-named “Ace” and has been at the center of a controversy surrounding his well being since the day he was found.

He was taken by animal control and slated to be euthanized. But people all over expressed outrage, demanding he be saved.

Late yesterday a judge issued a stay of execution, banning any pit bulls from being killed until a hearing next week.

However Fox 2 has just learned that Animal Control put ‘Ace’ to sleep.

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