This is excellent. The full interview hasn’t appeared online yet, but CNN has been running clips from it today. This is how journalism should be done. I’ve always been impressed with Poppy Harlow as a fair, hard-hitting interviewer.
Go here to see the video, for some damn reason, my version of WordPress doesn’t like MSNBC’s embedded code. (curses under his breath)
This morning on Morning
Joke Joe, Rev. Sharpton asked an excellent question, which prompted Governor Snyder to reveal how he feels about our right to elect our local leaders.
Rev. Al: …how do you deal with the fact that the “customers” as Kevin called them, feel disenfranchised. I mean, you made a unilateral decision. Their elected officials have really been, their power has been taken away and it undermines peoples right to vote because the only one who voted for Kevin was you. And this is something that is very disturbing that you have governors undermine the will of voters. There was s referendum last year that was opposed to this kind of action, you did it anyway.
Gov. Snyder: Reverend, if you look at it, the old law went away but we put in a new one that really was responsive to the issues that came up during that process. If you look at it, I’m also the elected official. I was elected by the people of Michigan, so there is an elected official responsible for this process and I think that is critically important.
Rev. Al: But what about the local elected officials, what about if I’m in Detroit, Rev. Charles Williams and others are raising this. In all due respect, and I voted for a city council and a mayor to represent me during this financial crisis. Now you bring in someone unelected, like in Pontiac, we had someone on the show who talked about an emergency manager came and sold the Silverdome for a half a million dollars that had been valued at several million dollars, over 200…I mean, Kevin has no one to answer to in the local constituency. That’s undemocratic. (emphasis mine)
Gov. Snyder: Blah, blah, blah….(my words)
If you want to know the details of what is happening in Michigan, go over to Eclectablog.com and spend some time in the archives, because Chris Savage has been all over this for many years and has the facts to back him up.
Now that I got that out of the way, Governor Snyder’s response to Reverend Al’s first question is an admission that he thinks he was elected dictator of Michigan. How else can it be interpreted? He said, “I’m also the elected official”, which translates as, I have authority over local officials and I have the power to invalidate their elections. I am a supreme elected official, I take precedent over those peons.
But let’s back up a little. He said prior to that, in regards to the referendum that we in Michigan overturned on November 6th, 2012, that the law “went away”, as if it just got lost on its way to Lansing. The people of Michigan made their voices heard, but Snyder ignored us and the Republican’s abused their control of the Michigan legislature and passed a new one. They slipped some money into this one, which they claim under Michigan’s laws makes it immune from a referendum.
It’s not just the goal of the law that’s offensive. House Republicans, stinging from a voter referendum last month that overturned the previous emergency financial manager act, have arrogantly inserted an almost $6 million appropriation into the new emergency financial manager law. By adding an appropriation, Republicans hope to make the law immune to another voter referendum.
It’s just one more example of the dirty tricks that Koch-financed Republicans across the country are pulling to privatize states and sell them off to their corporate buddies like the Koch brothers.
This has to change NOW!
Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles
If you are concerned at all about Republican overreach, you must go read this post by Eclectablog (Chris Savage) and then click over to the full article in The Nation magazine. If you haven’t bookmarked his blog yet, you should do that right now. Chris is one of the hardest working humans alive, who is fighting for liberals and progressives in Michigan and the country. He is top notch, top shelf and top dog in my book. Here is a snippet from his wonderful piece, but GO….read the whole thing.
What are the qualifications for such a powerful office and the six-figure salary that accompanies it? Not much: PA 4 requires “a minimum of 5 years’ experience and demonstrable expertise in business, financial, or local or state budgetary matters.” Last year the state held a pair of two-day training sessions for EMs, both run primarily by companies that provide outsourcing services to municipalities and school districts. Yet PA 4 made the emergency manager the single most powerful person in the city.
Results were swift. In April the Benton Harbor EM, Joe Harris, decreed: “Absent prior express written authorization and approval by the Emergency Manager”—himself—“no City Board, Commission or Authority shall take any action for or on behalf of the City whatsoever other than: i) Call a meeting to order, ii) Approve of meeting minutes, iii) Adjourn a meeting.” The move in effect abolished Benton Harbor’s elected City Commission and replaced it with an unelected bureaucrat, perhaps the first time this has happened in US history.
As usual, I’m posting links to stories that caught my eye over the last week that you may have missed.
I came across this one this morning at The Washington Monthly about the Huffington Post helping a lobbyist for big business spread his word.
And this is a MUST READ for anyone coming to this blog. Karoli lays out why President Obama deserves our support and takes on the people who like to call us Obots or Obamabots or whatever other childish name the adolescents on the internet like to use. Go READ NOW!
A congressmen from my great state of Michigan, Rep. Sander Levin, penned this opinion piece about why Republicans don’t give a shit about the jobless.
Republicans continue to sabotage the economy for their political gains. They want control again really bad and will go to great lengths. All the more reason why we need everyone helping to fight against them and elect Democrats.
Eclectablog has a lot of great stories about the assault on democracy in Michigan, go over there and get caught up. This is serious business, folks.
And contrary to all the crappy reporting going on, we are not at war with Libya and President Obama isn’t doing anything different than any other president. But of course, that doesn’t stop people from lying and exaggerating.
From our awesome commenter grantinhouston, a story about a lawsuit against the Emergency Manager law in Michigan.
And last but not least, you gotta love @vdaze for penning this new Urban Dictionary definition. “Gone Hamsher”
There is a town hall meeting this Saturday in Ann Arbor (10:30 am – 12:30 pm) that everyone who cares about democracy in Michigan should be at. Here are some details, courtesy of Eclectablog, the best source for Michigan political news around.
Washtenaw Community Members Host Town Hall to Discuss Emergency Manager Law
Ann Arbor, Michigan, June 25, 2011 – The Washtenaw Community Action Team (WCAT) is hosting a town hall meeting to discuss the statewide initiative to repeal Public Act 4.
The event will take place at the Ann Arbor Community Center, located at 625 N. Main Street, Saturday, June 25th from 10:30am to 12:30pm.
Featured speakers include:
Chris Savage (Blogger, http://eclectablog.com) – MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show picked up Savage’s PA-4 coverage bringing it to national attention.
Brandon Jessup (CEO, Michigan Forward) – Michigan Forward is a Detroit think-tank that launched the campaign to repeal PA-4. For more information please visit: www.michiganforward.org
David Bates, Ypsilanti Public Schools, President of the Board of Education
Public Act 4 is a new state law that gives controversial powers to emergency managers appointed by the governor to municipalities placed in the receivership of the state.
EM has broad authority to sell public assets, close schools, shred public contracts and agreements, and dissolve governments and remove elected officials.
PA-4 gained national attention when MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show covered the appointment of Emergency Manager Joe Harris to Benton Harbor in mid-April.
The appointment of emergency managers is anticipated in several Washtenaw County municipalities and school districts. On May 3rd, 2011, the City Council of Ypsilanti issued a formal resolution against PA-4
Michigan Forward and a number of statewide coalitions announced an effort to repeal the law on Saturday, June 18th. The Washtenaw County Community Action Team is leading the repeal effort in Washtenaw County.
The Town Hall will provide a forum to educate interested community members and organizations on the implications of the law for Washtenaw County communities, the effort to repeal PA-4, and the opportunity to begin discussing alternatives for Washtenaw County and Michigan communities.
About The Washtenaw Community Action Team (WCAT):
WCAT is a coalition of local unionists, activists, students, workers and community members working together to defend and advocate for working people at the local, state and national level.
Visit our Facebook Page: Washtenaw Community Action Team (Community Organization)
For more information visit us our Facebook Event Page:
Washtenaw Community Town Hall: Repeal Emergency Managers! (Event)
Washtenaw Community Action Team
E-mail: adamwarner68 [at] gmail [period] com
And here is a Youtube clip that will fill you in on some details of the effort.
A friend of mine, who is an instigator, sent me a link to this story, I’m sure he wants me to declare a boycott of Hudsonville Ice Cream, a local maker of the good stuff….mmmm, me like ice cream. But I haven’t eaten Hudsonville Ice Cream since I discovered Edy’s Slow-Churned Light ice cream, ding (free samples would be cool). But come on, why in the hell would they name an ice cream after a guy who is attempting to gut Michigan of our rights and drive people out of the state, especially seniors? Maybe it is the huge tax breaks they more than likely got from the corporate owned Snyder. From one of our local TV stations website, WOOD TV8…
HOLLAND, Mich. (AP) – Gov. Rick Snyder is scheduled to tour a West Michigan ice cream maker Wednesday and try out two new flavors created in his honor.
The Hudsonville Creamery and Ice Cream Co. has created the two new items containing candy and flavorings from Jogue, a company based in Northville.
Snyder is scheduled to try out the new flavors during a Wednesday morning visit to the ice cream company’s Holland plant.
Later, the governor plans to present the first “Reinventing Michigan” award to Energetx Composites Inc. of Holland.
He’s also scheduled to speak at the annual Tulip Time Festival luncheon before putting on a traditional Dutch costume complete with wooden shoes and marching with first lady Sue Snyder in the Tulip Time parade.
You see that protesters, he’s going to the Tulip Time Festival in Holland. Is it road trip time?
As far as a boycott goes, I personally won’t be buying their ice cream anymore but I would hate to see the people who are employed there get hurt because their corporate overlords are right-wing nuts. Did Governor Granholm have any ice cream named in her honor, I don’t know. Maybe.
From Eclectablog, reposted in full.
A press release from Heartland Revolution, who have faced rather ridiculous and farcical accusations that they are somehow allied with Whirlpool or other corporate entities in Benton Harbor:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:Contact: Joe PalmerHeartland Revolution
Heartland Revolution would like to commend all the groups which took part in the “Take Back Democracy” protest at Southwest Michigan’s Grand Floral Parade Saturday. Further, we would like to clarify a couple of points made in the press release issued by Save Benton Harbor on Friday.
The movement to rescue democracy in Benton Harbor and in Michigan has begun with action against Michigan’s Public Act 4, better known as the Emergency Manager law. A recall petition has been filed against the bill’s sponsor, Representative Al Pscholka who represents the Benton Harbor area. The influence of corporations on Mr. Pscholka’s career and his actions thus far in the Michigan House are unmistakable, and Heartland Revolution is resolute in its belief that the fight to rescue democracy and the fight against widespread corporate control of government are one in the same. We will work to repeal PA 4, and simultaneously we will work to recall elected officials who condone and enable undemocratic legislation written by and for powerful corporations.
Right now democracy is facing a threat unseen on this continent since the days of British control of the American colonies. For the last thirty years, corporations have gained unprecedented access to government and now have the ability to sway policy that affects all Americans. Due to this nefarious influence, we are seeing legislation that taxes senior pensions while giving the proceeds to corporations and individuals are being appointed to take over towns eliminating elected officials, not to mention widespread attacks on workers’ rights.
Many organizations and individuals are making this movement possible. There isn’t one lone leader of this charge to restore democracy. As Mary Alice Adams, a Benton Harbor resident, put it best, “we are all in the same boat.” Heartland Revolution has worked with, and will continue to work with, anyone that is willing to end this assault on democracy.
Considering the many issues faced by Benton Harbor and, equally important, the wider implications of the EFM Law on Michigan and, really, the entire country, it is imperative that the various groups find a way to work together and all pull the rope in the same direction. Attacking Heartland Revolution with these truly absurd accusations is a step backward, not forward.