Monday, March 19, 2007

May they rest in peace.

On this fourth anniversary of the Iraq War, I was going to post the names of each of the innocent Michigan service personnel who have lost their lives in Iraq. However, I have decided not to do so because, sadly, the list is very long.

3,216 personnel - including 135 with Michigan ties - have died in Iraq.

Please keep our troops, as well as their families, in your thoughts and prayers.


Thursday, March 08, 2007

Response to Joanne Emmons editorial

On March 7, Joanne Emmons, the former Michigan legislator, wrote an editorial in the Morning Sun titled “Granholm is leading state in wrong direction.” This is an understandable reaction.

As the chair of the Senate Finance Committee in a Republican-controlled legislature, Ms. Emmons participated in John Engler’s efforts to dry up Michigan’s revenues by cutting taxes in ways that had little benefit for the middle-class but helped businesses a great deal; rewarded Michigan companies for outsourcing Michigan jobs; undermined public education by changing the school financing structure to no school’s benefit, and enabled Engler to play a shell game with Michigan’s finances that resulted in a four-billion dollar deficit by the time he left office.

Did she do all of this single-handedly? Of course not. But she was a leader who used her votes to enable Engler in generally making a mess of Michigan’s financial, environmental, and educational underpinnings. Now that Granholm has proposed changes that will repair the damage Engler, Emmons and company did, of course she would think it is the wrong direction!

One thing she forgot to mention: until just two months ago, Republicans controlled the legislature and had stopped Granholm at every turn during her first four years in office. I hope that was merely an oversight. I also hope she was not being disingenuous as she lamented the plight of the “hard-working worker…struggling to make ends meet,” since their condition is partially a result of the policies she helped put in place in the last decade.

I'll make a bold suggestion: perhaps Ms. Emmons influence would be better used by urging the current Republican leaders to present their own plan, rather than waste her energies blaming Granholm for problems that she (Emmons) and her fellow Republicans contributed to in the long ago time of the 1990s.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Visit Duplicitous Dave

If you haven’t visited the other ICDP blog, Duplicitous Dave, you might consider stopping in to see what is being posted there. Christine Berry (the name should be familiar to anyone who attended the state convention) is posting there, as well as some other names that are perhaps better known from Michigan Liberal (, the better-known blog in the state.

Eric posted a video about the war in Iraq that should be required viewing for anyone who thinks we should stay in that hopeless war. You can find the blog here


Net Neutrality Update-AT&T wins again

Remember the days of yore when activists in Michigan fought AT&T's efforts to basically take over our communications systems? Remember the term "net neutrality?" Remember when Granholm was being seduced by the promise of jobs for Michigan if only she would approve the Republican-led legislature's desire to become one with AT&T? Ah, those were the days.
Well AT&T is still out there spending money to buy legislators, creating phony grassroots organizations (aka: Astroturf), and generally having a good time having its way with American consumers as they sleep.

Around the time AT&T was leaving the connubial bed in Michigan and eyeing Missouri and a few other states, it was given a gift by its friends at the FCC when its merger with Bell South was approved. This was after AT&T promised not to mess around with net neutrality for two whole years; a kind of merger pre-nuptial where the groom swears to the bride's father that he (the groom) will be faithful for two years, then it's Katie bar the door!

More recently, AT&T has worked its magic in Missouri, Maryland, and Georgia, with a mixture of Astroturf and promises that it knows will not be kept. At least Georgia made some money on the deal; 500 million for the legislature’s blessing.

Meanwhile, back in Washington, the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet was told by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web, that protecting Net Neutrality should be one of their top priorities.

Stay tuned (while you can) for more exciting updates.

Friday, March 02, 2007

When is protecting our troops “anti-troop?”

Here is a question for you: if a member of your family was about to be sent to Iraq, wouldn’t you want him or her to have the best available equipment? Of course you would. This is why Representative Jack Murtha (who is a Vietnam veteran) is pushing a plan in Congress that prohibits President Bush from sending more of our sons and daughters to Iraq if they are not well-equipped.

Strangely, the Republicans in Congress are calling Murtha’s plan “anti-troop.” Anti-troop? Hmmm. By this reasoning, putting our children in car seats to protect them shows that we are anti-automobile. Or inoculating them against childhood diseases means we are anti-God (after all, we might be interfering with God’s will).

Either the Republicans have lost their ability to reason, or they value ideology over the lives of our sons and daughters. You might call Representative Dave Camp (his toll free numbers is: 1-800-342-2455) and ask him what he values most: the lives of our troops or sticking with the President‘s failed policy.

(This post also appears on

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