Progress Michigan http://www.progressmichigan.org No corporate money. Just uncompromised progressive politics for Michigan. Fri, 24 Oct 2014 20:15:18 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 This Week in Progress http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/week-progress-27/ http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/week-progress-27/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 20:15:18 +0000 http://www.progressmichigan.org/?p=37457 11 days until Election Day. This Week in PM Blogging:  FEDS: Ex-Snyder Official Under Investigation For all of the scandals that have rocked the Snyder administration, it’s surprising that only one investigation has been launched. Either way, this investigation is welcome news for those wanting to hold Gov. Snyder accountable. Unanswered Aramark Questions There’s one […]

The post This Week in Progress appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>

11 days until Election Day.

This Week in PM Blogging: 

FEDS: Ex-Snyder Official Under Investigation

For all of the scandals that have rocked the Snyder administration, it’s surprising that only one investigation has been launched. Either way, this investigation is welcome news for those wanting to hold Gov. Snyder accountable.

Unanswered Aramark Questions

There’s one big question surrounding the state’s outsourced Aramark contract: Why hasn’t Gov. Snyder cancelled the contract? But apart from that obvious inquiry, there are several other questions that Snyder needs to answer.

No Gay Civil Rights? Really?

Gov. Snyder has done nothing to promote LGBT equality. Nothing.

When Innovation Isn’t Welcome

Apparently the phrase, “Practice what you preach” holds no sway over Gov. Snyder and the conservative legislature. They’ll preach against government interference in the free market, except when it comes to Tesla’s electric cars.

TWIP Clips:

We’re back on the air

Due to the resounding success of our television ad highlighting the numerous problems with Gov. Snyder’s Aramark contract, we’re going back on the air!

The ad will go back up on cable markets in Southeast Michigan, Saginaw, Flint and Marquette starting October 25th through Election Day.

If you haven’t seen it yet (about 30,000 people have already), here’s the video:

Again, with Aramark

That’s right: More problems with Aramark. No surprises here, to be honest. More drug smuggling and a whistle-blower complaint from a former employee who says Aramark workers dangerously cut corners and falsified reports.

Whistle-blower: Aramark falsified records, served filthy food

Third Aramark prison worker suspected of drug smuggling

Let’s all say it together: Gov. Snyder, cancel the contract!

Jimmy John’s: Just Freaky

The owner of Jimmy John’s seemingly treats his employees like crap.

They make low wages, have no job security, no benefits, and no union representation.

Jimmy John’s employees, from sandwich makers to delivery drivers, are even required to sign non-compete agreements forbidding them to work at one of the sandwich chain’s competitors for a period of two years following employment at Jimmy John’s. The company’s definition of a “competitor” encompasses any business that’s within 3 miles of a Jimmy John’s location and that derives 10 percent of its revenue from sandwiches.

In Michigan, that means that all of metro Detroit, Lansing, East Lansing, and Grand Rapids would effectively be off limits to food service employment opportunities for former Jimmy John’s employees.

To everyone’s surprise, conservative legislators aren’t up in arms over this blatant attempt to stifle “free market capitalism.” Not only is Jimmy John’s preventing other businesses from competing by requiring employees to sign non-compete agreements, it’s also limiting Michiganders’ job opportunities.

In times like these, when many families are struggling to make ends meet and small businesses are being forced to close their doors, conservatives should be openly condemning actions like Jimmy John’s.

Progressive Reads:

Potential Revenue Lost to Schools is a Billion Dollars a Year

Dave Agema: Arab Fighter Pilots Are ‘Camel Jockeys’

What Having An Abortion In 1959 Was Like

Big Picture: “Education – Who has Snyder been tough on?”

The post This Week in Progress appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>
http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/week-progress-27/feed/ 0
Progress Michigan PAF Going Back on the Air with Snyder/Aramark Ad http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/progress-michigan-paf-going-back-air-snyderaramark-ad/ http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/progress-michigan-paf-going-back-air-snyderaramark-ad/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 17:05:04 +0000 http://www.progressmichigan.org/?p=37454 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE News from Progress Michigan Political Action Fund  October 24, 2014 Contact: Sam Inglot, 616-916-0574, sam@progressmichigan.org Progress Michigan PAF Going Back on the Air with Snyder/Aramark Ad Television ad will air from Saturday through the election to hold Snyder accountable LANSING — An ad aimed at highlighting the numerous problems with Gov. Snyder’s handling of […]

The post Progress Michigan PAF Going Back on the Air with Snyder/Aramark Ad appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

News from Progress Michigan Political Action Fund 

October 24, 2014

Contact: Sam Inglot, 616-916-0574sam@progressmichigan.org

Progress Michigan PAF Going Back on the Air with Snyder/Aramark Ad

Television ad will air from Saturday through the election to hold Snyder accountable

LANSING — An ad aimed at highlighting the numerous problems with Gov. Snyder’s handling of the state’s Aramark contract will go back up on the air from October 25th through the election, the Progress Michigan Political Action Fund announced today.

The highly successful ad, titled “Maggots,” reached tens of thousands of Michigan voters through TV and the Youtube versionof the ad reached nearly 30,000 views in its first iteration.

The ad will run on cable markets in Southeast Michigan, Flint, Saginaw and Marquette.

“Michigan voters are concerned about the fact that Gov. Snyder is putting corporate profits over public safety,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan. “Gov. Snyder’s decision to maintain the Aramark contract despite drug smuggling, sexual contact with inmates, and a murder-for-hire plot is baffling and he needs to be held accountable.”

On Thursday, two additional stories broke related to the Aramark contract. A former Aramark employee filed a whistle-blower complaint with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration alleging she lost her job because she complained about unsanitary and dangerous food preparation practices, as well as falsifying records. Later in the day, a third Aramark employee was fired on suspicion of drug smuggling.

“What kind of leader sits idly by while public employees and Michigan communities are put in harm’s way?” Scott questioned.“Over 100 Aramark employees have been banned from Michigan prisons and we have yet to hear back from Governor Snyder or Aramark if those employees are now working in Michigan schools. We should also remember that 370 state employees lost their jobs when this contract was outsourced to Aramark. Governor Snyder should stop putting corporate profits over public safety and should cancel the Aramark contract immediately.”

 ###

The post Progress Michigan PAF Going Back on the Air with Snyder/Aramark Ad appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>
http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/progress-michigan-paf-going-back-air-snyderaramark-ad/feed/ 0
When Innovation Isn’t Welcome http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/innovation-isnt-welcome/ http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/innovation-isnt-welcome/#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 21:00:05 +0000 http://www.progressmichigan.org/?p=37451 By Brad O’Neil Promoting a competitive, entrepreneurial, and business friendly environment in Michigan has been the defining, if not only, image Governor Snyder had worked to portray during his time in office and it’s an image he’s counting on to get him reelected. That’s why it’s odd that the Governor signed a bill on Tuesday […]

The post When Innovation Isn’t Welcome appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>

By Brad O’Neil

Promoting a competitive, entrepreneurial, and business friendly environment in Michigan has been the defining, if not only, image Governor Snyder had worked to portray during his time in office and it’s an image he’s counting on to get him reelected. That’s why it’s odd that the Governor signed a bill on Tuesday banning automakers from selling vehicles directly to customers in Michigan.

Through a last minute addition of language and without any debate, the bill effectively prevents Tesla Motors, a California based company that manufactures cutting edge electric vehicles, from selling their products in Michigan. Instead, it specifically requires all automakers to sell through a network of franchised dealers. But that’s not all – it also goes so far as to prohibit the opening of galleries for Tesla to display their cars and interact with potential customers.

This piece of legislation seems to run counter to the economic environment Governor Snyder claims to be working to create and is confusing to many. Even Dan Gilbert, the billionaire entrepreneur and a supporter of the Governor, criticized Snyder on his decision to sign the bill. “To me, you have to have a philosophy and you have to stick with it, and you can’t let your personal circumstances sort of compromise that,” Gilbert said. “Why do you have to go to the legislature and ban innovation?” 

One has to assume the auto-dealer lobby heavily influenced the Governor’s decision.  Almost no one else supported the bill. In an open letter from the International Center for Law & Economics to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a state that recently passed a similar ban, more than 70 economists and law professors from around the nation argued that such action does not make any economic sense. And according to a recent Justice Department study,  “As a matter of economics, arguments for state bans on manufacturer direct sales of autos based on holdup and free-rider problems are not persuasive…”

Not only has Tesla done nothing wrong, they are an innovator in the electric car industry and are playing an invaluable role in bringing energy efficiency into the mainstream. In fact, 100 Tesla vehicles are already registered in Michigan which means folks have either driven out of state to make their purchase or have ordered them online. Impeding Tesla’s growth is wrong and so is Governor Snyder. We shouldn’t punish success. Where have I heard that one before?

The post When Innovation Isn’t Welcome appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>
http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/innovation-isnt-welcome/feed/ 0
Progress Michigan Statement on Whistleblower Complaint Regarding Aramark http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/progress-michigan-statement-whistleblower-complaint-regarding-aramark/ http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/progress-michigan-statement-whistleblower-complaint-regarding-aramark/#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 13:38:45 +0000 http://www.progressmichigan.org/?p=37448 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE News from Progress Michigan October 23, 2014 Contact: Sam Inglot, 616-916-0574, sam@progressmichigan.org Progress Michigan Statement on Whistleblower Complaint Regarding Aramark LANSING — Today, Progress Michigan issued the following statement regarding the whistleblower complaint alleging that Aramark employees cut corners and didn’t follow proper food safety protocol in Michigan prisons. “These allegations are deeply troubling and continue the […]

The post Progress Michigan Statement on Whistleblower Complaint Regarding Aramark appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
News from Progress Michigan

October 23, 2014

Contact: Sam Inglot, 616-916-0574sam@progressmichigan.org

Progress Michigan Statement on Whistleblower Complaint Regarding Aramark

LANSING — Today, Progress Michigan issued the following statement regarding the whistleblower complaint alleging that Aramark employees cut corners and didn’t follow proper food safety protocol in Michigan prisons.

“These allegations are deeply troubling and continue the trend of problems related to the state’s out-sourced Aramark contract,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan. “There is no reason for Gov. Snyder to continue to defend this contract given the litany of problems that have gone on. Gov. Snyder needs to show leadership and do what he should’ve done months ago and cancel the contract.”

To date, 112 Aramark workers have been banned from working in Michigan prisons for grievances ranging from sexual contact with inmates to drug smuggling. Progress Michigan recently sent a letter to Gov. Snyder asking whether or not he knows if these Aramark employees were allowed to work in places like schools.

###

The post Progress Michigan Statement on Whistleblower Complaint Regarding Aramark appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>
http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/progress-michigan-statement-whistleblower-complaint-regarding-aramark/feed/ 0
No Gay Civil Rights? Really? http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/gay-civil-rights-really/ http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/gay-civil-rights-really/#comments Wed, 22 Oct 2014 20:31:25 +0000 http://www.progressmichigan.org/?p=37443 By Brad O’Neil Did you know that under current Michigan law, a person can be fired, denied housing, or otherwise discriminated against because of their sexual orientation or gender identity? That’s right. And what are Governor Snyder and conservatives in the legislature doing about it? Nothing. In fact, some of those legislators went so far […]

The post No Gay Civil Rights? Really? appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>

By Brad O’Neil

Did you know that under current Michigan law, a person can be fired, denied housing, or otherwise discriminated against because of their sexual orientation or gender identity?

That’s right. And what are Governor Snyder and conservatives in the legislature doing about it? Nothing. In fact, some of those legislators went so far as to attend a “No Gay Civil Rights” press conference at the Capitol this morning where speakers voiced their opposition to amending the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act.

The Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act, Michigan’s non-discrimination law passed in 1976, states that individuals may not be discriminated against based on “…religion, race, color, national origin, age, sex, height, weight, familial status, or marital status…” It stops short, however, of including protections for sexual orientation and gender identity.

There is an easy and obvious fix to this and that is to amend the law to include sexual orientation and gender identity. Such an amendment would not only be morally just, it would place Michigan in a stronger position to compete economically while sending a message that our state is a place of tolerance and opportunity. 

Despite the fact that an amendment is supported by a majority of Michigan voters, Republicans included, as well as by many major Michigan companies such as AT&T, Whirlpool, Dow Chemical, Blue Cross Blue Shield, and Google, Governor Snyder refuses to state an opinion on the matter and Republicans in the legislature will not advance legislation to address it. By declining to take a position on one of the most consequential civil rights issues of our time, Governor Snyder is not only allowing discriminatory practices to remain legal, he is perpetuating them.

Governor Snyder repeatedly states that he does not believe in discrimination yet in 2011 he signed a law barring public employers from offering “medical benefits or other fringe benefits” to domestic partners. Found to be blatantly discriminatory and subsequently struck down in federal court last year, it provides insight into just how far the Governor is willing to go to deny basic rights and benefits to same-sex couples.

Governor Snyder is clearly out of touch, but when it comes to the issue of basic civil rights, he has shown remarkable cowardice and lack of leadership ability. Deferring to the legislature as a means of avoidance is not governing and it certainly does not illustrate a sound understanding of what it means to represent all people.

The post No Gay Civil Rights? Really? appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>
http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/gay-civil-rights-really/feed/ 0
Progress Michigan: New Poll Shows Schauer Ahead in Gubernatorial Race http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/progress-michigan-new-poll-shows-schauer-ahead-gubernatorial-race/ http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/progress-michigan-new-poll-shows-schauer-ahead-gubernatorial-race/#comments Tue, 21 Oct 2014 20:11:57 +0000 http://www.progressmichigan.org/?p=37438 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE News from Progress Michigan October 21, 2014 Contact: Sam Inglot, 616-916-0574, sam@progressmichigan.org Progress Michigan: New Poll Shows Schauer Ahead in Gubernatorial Race LANSING — A new poll released today by Progress Michigan shows Mark Schauer gaining a slight advantage over Gov. Rick Snyder with two weeks until the election. The polls were conducted from […]

The post Progress Michigan: New Poll Shows Schauer Ahead in Gubernatorial Race appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

News from Progress Michigan

October 21, 2014

Contact: Sam Inglot, 616-916-0574sam@progressmichigan.org

Progress Michigan: New Poll Shows Schauer Ahead in Gubernatorial Race

LANSING — A new poll released today by Progress Michigan shows Mark Schauer gaining a slight advantage over Gov. Rick Snyder with two weeks until the election.

The polls were conducted from October 11th through October 13th and October 19th through October 20th by Clarity Campaign Labs and represent a sample of 1,032 likely voters. Both polls were conducted through landline and cellular phones.

The data shows Schauer leading Snyder 44 percent to 41 percent with 15 percent undecided.

The poll shows an uptick in support for Schauer since the last poll released by Progress Michigan, which showed the race as a dead heat. The latest poll also included data for the U.S. Senate and Attorney General races.

###

Clarity Campaign Labs 10.21 Memo

The post Progress Michigan: New Poll Shows Schauer Ahead in Gubernatorial Race appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>
http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/progress-michigan-new-poll-shows-schauer-ahead-gubernatorial-race/feed/ 0
Unanswered Aramark Questions http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/unanswered-aramark-questions/ http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/unanswered-aramark-questions/#comments Tue, 21 Oct 2014 16:57:05 +0000 http://www.progressmichigan.org/?p=37435 As you’ve heard by now, Gov. Rick Snyder’s contract with Aramark has been a disaster and is a public safety concern for Michigan residents. Despite all we know, including drug smuggling, a murder-for-hire plot and sexual romps, we still have questions that need to be answered. Dennis Muchmore and Dan Heyns discussed cancelling the $98,000 […]

The post Unanswered Aramark Questions appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>

As you’ve heard by now, Gov. Rick Snyder’s contract with Aramark has been a disaster and is a public safety concern for Michigan residents. Despite all we know, including drug smuggling, a murder-for-hire plot and sexual romps, we still have questions that need to be answered.

  1. Dennis Muchmore and Dan Heyns discussed cancelling the $98,000 fine in March. What did Gov. Snyder know and when did he know it regarding the cancelled fine?
  1. Why hasn’t leadership in the state legislature held any hearings into the Aramark scandal?
  1. The Department of Corrections issued a press release covering for Aramark. Was the Department pressured by the Snyder administration or Aramark to issue the release?
  1. Dennis Muchmore asked the Treasury Department to do him a favor and research the investment value of Aramark. Was this an official state function or a personal favor?
  1. What happens to a worker that is ordered to stay away from our prisons? Are they still able to work for Aramark in our schools, with our seniors or at sporting events?

NOTE: We asked the Governor, top officials in charge of the Aramark contract and Aramark this exact question. For the sake of our students, seniors and families, I hope we get an answer soon.

  1. Why does Gov. Snyder continue to defend Aramark while refusing to defend his own record of failure when it comes to public safety?

We will keep pressing the administration for answers because as taxpayers and citizens concerned about the safety of our children and communities, we deserve to know the truth.

 

 

The post Unanswered Aramark Questions appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>
http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/unanswered-aramark-questions/feed/ 0
Letter to Snyder: Where are Banned Aramark Workers? http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/letter-snyder-banned-aramark-workers/ http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/letter-snyder-banned-aramark-workers/#comments Tue, 21 Oct 2014 12:06:45 +0000 http://www.progressmichigan.org/?p=37430 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE News from Progress Michigan  October 20, 2014 Contact: Sam Inglot, 616-916-0574, sam@progressmichigan.org Letter to Snyder: Where are Banned Aramark Workers? Progress Michigan letter to governor asks about 112 Aramark employees banned from state prisons  LANSING — Today, Progress Michigan sent a letter to Gov. Rick Snyder asking if he knows for a […]

The post Letter to Snyder: Where are Banned Aramark Workers? appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

News from Progress Michigan 

October 20, 2014

Contact: Sam Inglot, 616-916-0574, sam@progressmichigan.org

Letter to Snyder: Where are Banned Aramark Workers?

Progress Michigan letter to governor asks about 112 Aramark employees banned from state prisons 

LANSING — Today, Progress Michigan sent a letter to Gov. Rick Snyder asking if he knows for a fact that the 112 Aramark employees are not working in other Michigan facilities where they could interact with vulnerable populations.

To date, 112 Aramark workers have been banned from working in Michigan prisons for grievances ranging from sexual contact with inmates to drug smuggling.

“Despite the dangerous consequences of this privatization effort in our state prisons, Gov. Snyder has stood behind his decision to hire Aramark,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan. “We think parents, grandparents and Michigan voters should know whether or not these employees are working elsewhere in Michigan. If Aramark’s employees can’t be responsible in our prisons, we definitely don’t want them in our schools. We believe it’s the Snyder administration’s responsibility to get answers considering they’re the ones keeping this contract intact.”

The letter below was sent to Gov. Snyder, MDOC Director Daniel Heyns, Aramark contract overseer Ed Buss and Aramark’s Corporate Legal Counsel:

As you are aware, the state’s contract with Aramark has been plagued with problems. They include inappropriate sexual contact, drug smuggling, a murder-for-hire plot and others. To date, at least 112 Aramark workers have been issued “stop orders” banning them from working in Michigan’s prisons.

However, Aramark provides its services to schools, universities, seniors, and at family-oriented sporting events in Michigan as well. 

Michigan taxpayers deserve to know if any of these workers that were banned from working with our prisoners are currently working for Aramark in another capacity, including at our schools, senior centers and sporting venues.  

Can you assure Michigan families that workers banned from Michigan prisons are not working for Aramark in other capacities in Michigan?

Please respond promptly in writing so that we may educate the public about this important issue. 

Very truly yours, 

Lonnie Scott

Executive Director

Progress Michigan

###

The post Letter to Snyder: Where are Banned Aramark Workers? appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>
http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/letter-snyder-banned-aramark-workers/feed/ 0
FEDS: Ex-Snyder Official Under Investigation http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/feds-ex-snyder-official-investigation/ http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/feds-ex-snyder-official-investigation/#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 17:18:45 +0000 http://www.progressmichigan.org/?p=37425 All I can say is, it’s about time. Numerous outlets reported today that the Department of Housing and Urban Development is investigating “a potential conflict of interest or misuse of federal funds” by the former head of MSHDA, Scott Woosley. You might remember the headlines about Woosley living the high life while at MSHDA, where […]

The post FEDS: Ex-Snyder Official Under Investigation appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>

All I can say is, it’s about time.

Numerous outlets reported today that the Department of Housing and Urban Development is investigating “a potential conflict of interest or misuse of federal funds” by the former head of MSHDA, Scott Woosley.

You might remember the headlines about Woosley living the high life while at MSHDA, where he tried to write off things like filet mignon and top-shelf liquor on his expense reports.

Woosley resigned the day after the news broke and we called on him to repay what he had improperly spent.

But while Woosley was at MSHDA, his private real estate investment company was receiving federal grant money from MSHDA. That’s why the feds were called in.

“Records show Labor Management got just more than $1 million from a $98-million HUD grant that the Michigan State Housing Development Authority received in 2008 for its Neighborhood Stabilization Program,” according to the Detroit Free Press. And money from that grant continued to flow to Woosley’s company even after he took over MSHDA.

It’s about time that an ex-Snyder official was investigated for corruption. Woosley is only one of the many current and former Snyder officials that have been involved in a Snyder Scandal.

When Woosley resigned in disgrace, Snyder’s spokesperson said, “The Governor appreciates all that Scott Woosley has done to further Michigan’s comeback.”

I wonder if that statement will hold true if the fed’s legal hammer drops on this situation. Gov. Snyder has done little to stem corruption and abuse in his administration and it’s about time someone was held accountable.

Much like the state’s Aramark contract, it will be interesting to see what Gov. Snyder knew and when he knew it.

The post FEDS: Ex-Snyder Official Under Investigation appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>
http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/feds-ex-snyder-official-investigation/feed/ 0
This Week in Progress http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/week-progress-26/ http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/week-progress-26/#comments Fri, 17 Oct 2014 20:23:34 +0000 http://www.progressmichigan.org/?p=37420 This Week in PM Blogging: Can We Really Wait Until 2038? Wait for it… Wait for it… Is it 2038 yet? Gov. Snyder’s pitch to Michiganders that the state is on the road to recovery might take awhile to set in — about 24 years to be exact. Blood is Thicker than Michiganders Gov. Snyder […]

The post This Week in Progress appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>

This Week in PM Blogging:

Can We Really Wait Until 2038?

Wait for it… Wait for it… Is it 2038 yet? Gov. Snyder’s pitch to Michiganders that the state is on the road to recovery might take awhile to set in — about 24 years to be exact.

Blood is Thicker than Michiganders

Gov. Snyder will defend most of his policies with a dry, almost robotic tone. But when you question why his right-hand man secured a huge windfall for his cousin’s furniture company — oh boy, now you’ve really struck a nerve.

TWIP Clips:

Colonel Snyder Says: “We Do Fracking Right!”

Guest Blog: By Denny Green, Clean Water Action

This is just Finger Lickin’ Shameful!

Last Sunday, we saw the only Michigan Gubernatorial Debate for the November 4th election.

There was plenty wrong with what Gov. Snyder had to say on a number of issues (the huge funding cuts to education, the tax onSNYDER - SANDERS (In Red) senior pensions, the scandalous Aramark contract, marriage equality, etc.) but the one thing that any person who appreciates Michigan’s natural resources should find cringe-worthy was his position on fracking.

When the subject of renewable energy and energy independence was broached, Snyder assured us that he does want energy independence, but then had the effrontery to say, “fracking is one of the most effective tools to do it.” He just neglected to add the part about health risks, such as birth defects and infertility.

Snyder boasted that in Michigan, “We do fracking right!” This claim, in essence, made him the Colonel Sanders of dangerous practices. Now, call it a matter of semantics, but the word “right” should probably not be used for any practice that creates a low-hovering cloud of stench — that smells of sulfur, up to 80 miles away — like the one in Grayling, on Christmas morning of 2011.

As if his assertion that he is “very pro-environment” wasn’t enough to make you check your hearing, he actually had the brazen audacity to claim that Michigan has fracked over 10,000 wells and “Never had a problem.” If the Governor thinks that the inevitable environmental risks caused by deep-well drilling methods that use poisonous chemicals and consume tens of millions of gallons of water is not a problem, well, that’s a problem.

For a more detailed look at what is either blissful indifference or flagrant disregard for safeguarding Michigan’s environment, check out Snyder’s failing first-term scorecard, released last month by Clean Water Action.

So Much for Being Objective

Earlier this week, we released hundreds of pages of emails between Gov. Snyder’s chief of staff and State Superintendent Mike Flanagan.

A handful of emails showed that Gov. Snyder not only lied about the supposed “objective” process that goes into declaring financial emergencies for local governments and schools, but that his administration ultimately wants to dissolve the Highland Park School District.

Here is Snyder defending the “objective” process that goes into declaring financial emergencies in cities and school districts:

At MLive’s Ballot Bash“My goal is wait until it’s truly [an] emergency, it’s objectively decided. There’s no subjectivity to deciding it’s an emergency or not.”

At the town hall at Wayne State: “It’s not a subjective process…I don’t simply decide that. Certain conditions and terms of financial emergency have to exist first.”

The documents we obtained through FOIA tell a much different story. The emails show that the administration was looking at emergency manager candidates well before Snyder officially declared a financial emergency in March.

In an email from Dennis Muchmore to State Superintendent Mike Flanagan, dated December 21, 2011, Muchmore says: “Some concern over the Highland Park schools EM choice. Any thoughts on that one?”

Flanagan replies the next day: “D, you asked about possible names for HP EM.” And goes on to suggest two people.

However, in one email string, Muchmore casually refers to the fact that the administration ultimately wants to dissolve the Highland Park School District in a January 17th email in 2012:

“Do we have an endgame regarding this system? I understand we all think it should ultimately be abolished, the hearing is set, we have an EM candidate and a date of the announcement should the Supt.’s designee find cause to move forward, but then what?”

So much for emergency management being an “objective” process.

Progressive Reads: 

Conservation group says Sean McCann is only Kalamazoo-area state representative protecting the environment 

Is Sex Only for Rich People?

Should Single Women Be Allowed to Vote?

The Nation’s Shame: The Injustice of Mandatory Minimums

The post This Week in Progress appeared first on Progress Michigan.

]]>
http://www.progressmichigan.org/2014/10/week-progress-26/feed/ 0