Saturday, October 31, 2009


This update focuses on health care. The Obama administration continues to attempt to foist a takeover of health care on America.

Ann Coulter: Liberal Lies About Health Care: Part 6 Part 7 I'll Pass on 'Opting Out'
Robert Blumen: 'Health Insurance'
Phyllis Schlafly: What's In and What's Out of Health Care Legislation
Thomas Eddlem: Obama Attacks Health care Studies
Alex Newman: Swine Flu: The Risks and Efficacy of Vaccines
Alex Newman: Swine Flu Seizures
James Edwards: Health Reform Loopholes for Illegals
Phyllis Schlafly: Good Health Depends on Defeating Government Health
Michael Cannon and Ramensh Ponnuru: You Mislead!

See also: Sick in America with John Stossel

Rebecca Kiessling's Speech

On Thursday, Rebecca Kiessling spoke at an event sponsored by Students for Life. She gave a powerful testimony, told her story of being conceived by rape, and refuted arguments for legal abortion, particularly in cases of rape.

See her website here:

Campus Carry?


Campus gun law bill being revised

Colleges could use discretion to ban concealed firearms from all campus buildings, but would have to allow guns in open outdoor spaces, under revisions to a bill being considered by a House committee.

Public colleges and universities are currently exempt from a statute that prohibits local governments from overriding state gun laws. The University of Michigan, Eastern Michigan University and Washtenaw Community College all have ordinances barring firearms from campus, except for those carried by campus police.

Last week, House Bill 5474 was introduced to the Tourism, Outdoor Recreation and Natural Resources Committee. The original bill would have erased campus ordinances and allowed those with concealed weapons permits to carry firearms anywhere on campus, except for classrooms, dormitories and stadiums, where guns are prohibited under a separate law.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Parking Lot Carry

From the NRA:

Parking Lot Legislation Headed to the House Floor!

Friday, October 30, 2009

On Tuesday, October 27 the House Tourism, Outdoor Recreation and Natural Resources Committee approved House Bill 5302 and House Bill 5303 by a 9 to 1 vote.

HB5302, introduced by State Representative Paul Opsommer (R-93), and HB5303, introduced by State Representative Joel Sheltrown (D-103), would prohibit employers from firing employees who safely and lawfully store their firearms in locked vehicles while at work. The bill now moves to the full Michigan House of Representatives where a vote may be taken any day.

Please contact your Representative TODAY and respectfully ask them to support this important Second Amendment legislation. To find your representative and contact information please click here.

CMU Conflict

From Education Reporter:

Central Michigan University's Student Life department de-recognized CMU's chapter of Campus Conservatives (CC) four days before a visit from state Sen. Michelle McManus, forcing the group to host the senator in a cafeteria instead of a more appropriate venue. Student Life was punishing CC for failing to pay for extra police security at a speech by David Horowitz last fall. The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) informed CMU that requiring "student organizations hosting controversial events to pay for extra security is clearly unconstitutional, as it affixes a price tag to events based on their expressive content." CMU Student Life has already dropped three sets of previous, unrelated charges against Campus Conservatives — twice after warnings from FIRE, and once after a warning from the ACLU. (, 8-25-09)

Local News

Local news around Kalamazoo.

Discrimination Ordinance:
Some voters say Kalamazoo's anti-discrimination vote doesn't address 'bathroom issue'
Anti-discrimination ordinance: Information, local opinions and more
One Kalamazoo marches against discrimination
Black vote seen as key in ballot issue
War chest may have record amount: Group has nearly $350,000 to support anti-discrimination ordinance on Kalamazoo ballot

November Elections:
Kalamazoo City Commission candidate cries foul over Democratic Party's role in election
Kalamazoo City Commission stumps at WMU
Reason for Alamo recall effort debated
City commission candidates to speak at WMU Tuesday
City candidates file financial reports
Records show spending in Portage City Council races

Other News:
Oshtemo measure aims to restrict panhandling
Oshtemo finalizing new police tax
Calvin College agrees to further study ban on homosexual advocacy
Minors may no longer be required to submit to breath tests in the city of Kalamazoo
Second arena-study deadline to be missed
Kalamazoo Citizens for Responsible Government releases scorecard on public bodies' transparency

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Kai Phillips for Kalamazoo City Commission

In a field of seventeen candidates for the Kalamazoo City Commission, one candidate stands out. Kai Phillips has been a business manager and is a Kalamazoo resident making his first run for elective office.

Kai opposes the discrimination ordinance passed by the Kalamazoo City Commission. The ordinance would take away people's religious freedom and freedom of association. It would also be bad for business, threatening $500 per day fines, lawsuits, and investigations against businesses that are already struggling in this tough economy. He knows that this ordinance is bad for Kalamazoo.

Kai also opposes the terrible policy instituted by the Kalamazoo police chief to not check whether criminals caught by the police are illegal aliens. This policy can only lead to more crime and hurt Kalamazoo by not catching criminals who should be deported.
Kalamazoo to become Sanctuary City

Kai opposes raising taxes and supports cutting taxes. He knows that taxpayers have been punished enough, and attracting business to Kalamazoo requires an environment friendly to job creation.

Kai Phillips is the right choice for the Kalamazoo City Commission.

See also: Analysis of Kalamazoo City Commission Races

See his website:

Monday, October 26, 2009

Women with Guns

Women learn about guns in Michigan.

Women aim for protection in female-only concealed pistol classes

Discrimination News

The fight over Kalamazoo's discrimination ordinance is heating up. Some notes on the race.

War chest may have record amount: Group has nearly $350,000 to support anti-discrimination ordinance on Kalamazoo ballot
City candidates file financial reports
Records show spending in Portage City Council races

Not surprisingly, the ordinance supporters are swimming in money, between the support of billionaire democrat Jon Stryker and national 'gay rights' groups. They have a 10:1 advantage in money. Meanwhile, the opponents have raised most of their money in small donations. Win or lose, the votes aren't going to go 10:1 one way.


The ordinance supporters' organization is named 'One Kalamazoo'. What does this mean? That we should all get together in perfect harmony? But what if people disagree, as they always do in a free society? What should be done about the awful people disrupting the glorious 'oneness' all right-thinking people want? They must be punished! That's the whole point of the ordinance. It isn't homosexuals who are being threatened with 500 dollar per day fines for living their beliefs.

Unity is overrated:
Calls to 'put politics aside' really mean 'stop disagreeing with me and shut up.'


On a related note, the anti-Christian bigotry expressed by the ordinance supporters in comment threads on many of the Gazette articles on the ordinance is surprising. Not that it exists, but that discrimination ordinance supporters are so open about expressing their hatred.


One Kalamazoo marches against discrimination

“Whether or not this passes, when this gets over, the Resource Center will still be here after Nov. 3,” Garcia said. “What makes me angry is that the opposition says this isn’t a problem in Kalamazoo. We’ve had over 20 phone calls in the last year from people who have lost their jobs or their houses because of what they are.”
So prove it. Until they do, we can only assume these incidents are just made up, just like this batch of phony hate crimes:
"Queer students say harassment has increased"
Axis of Queers


Black vote seen as key in ballot issue
Kalamazoo pastor J. Louis Felton takes middle road in ordinance debate

The black vote is correctly seen as key in the election. Ordinance supporters are claiming that their cause is analogous to the civil rights movement. This would be laughable if it weren't outrageous. Did the civil rights movement outspend its opponents 10:1? Did it have black billionaires funding it? Did it have the unanimous support of city commissioners? What a joke. Anybody who claims their cause is just like the civil rights movement is selling a bill of goods.

Anonymous commenters claim that opponents of the discrimination ordinance are just like opponents of the civil rights movement. Based on what? The civil rights movement was largely a religious movement, led by black pastors and organized in the black church. Today, black pastors are mostly against the discrimination ordinance, though pastor Felton has waffled on the issue. More liberal black politicians, who are funded by Jon Stryker and his ilk, mostly support the ordinance.



The ballot language of the ordinance itself is misleading. It makes it sound like the ordinance would ban 'discrimination' based on all manner of factors, including race, gender, and religion. But this is in the existing law. What is new is 'sexual orientation' and 'gender identity'. Will voters be confused by this?


The Curse of the Creative Class
A New Age theory of urban development amounts to economic snake oil.

Ordinance supporters claim that it will benefit the economy. This is based on a book entitled The Rise of the Creative Class, which makes dubious, if not fraudulent arguments to support its advocacy of liberal social policies and taxpayer support for liberal artists, etc. The above article destroys these arguments with actual facts. But politicians and leftists aren't likely to examine the facts behind arguments for things they want to do anyways.

Implementing all my favorite social policies will improve the economy!

On a side note, this same book was the inspiration for governor Granholm's absurd Cool Cities Initiative, which has worked out so well for Kalamazoo and Michigan.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Analysis of Kalamazoo City Commission Races

One of the local races to be decided this November is that for the Kalamazoo City Commission. All seven seats are up for election. The top seven vote-getters become the next commission, the top vote-getter becomes mayor, and the runner up becomes vice-mayor. The race is non-partisan.

Seventeen candidates have filed for election. Six of seven incumbents are running for reelection, with incumbent Sean McCann running for the democrat nomination for the 60th state house seat being vacated by Robert Jones.

The incumbents range from moderate (Barb Miller) to liberal (Mayor Bobby Hopewell, Vice-mayor Hannah McKinney, David Andersen) to very liberal (Don Cooney, Stephanie Moore). The first five incumbents are all pretty likely to be reelected, though Barb Miller may lose some conservative voters due to her support for the discrimination ordinance that will also be decided in the election.

Stephanie Moore is highly vulnerable due both to the fact that she barely squeaked into office in seventh place in 2007, and her troubles with the law. She was arrested and pled no contest to interfering with a police officer in Battle Creek and spent a short time in jail. There was also a controversy about firemen filling her swimming pool for free. Before her election, Moore was convicted of several crimes, including embezzlement, when she was a community organizer for ACORN.

Moore, who is serving her first term as a city commissioner, pleaded guilty in 2005 to misdemeanor embezzlement from the Fannie Lou Hamer Project, a national nonprofit voting education foundation she headed. Michigan State Police records also show that in 1983 Moore, then 17, was found guilty of misdemeanor retail fraud and in 1998 she pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor nonsufficient funds charge.
Kalamazoo City Commission elections often attract cranks, or to be generous, candidates who have no chance of winning. In 2007 there were the two homeless candidates who ran as write-ins after failing to get the fifty signatures needed to get on the ballot. In 2005 there were Phil Bassett and Dennis Flatt, whose big idea was to build a monorail from Western to downtown. There was also the race-baiting reverend Jerry McNeely, who had plenty of ethical problems.

Screening the candidates by occupation and quality of responses, we find the following candidates who are not very likely to win.
Jimmy Dean Ayers: No occupation
Birleta Bean-Hardeman: Transportation manager, B & W Charters Inc
Nicholas Boyd: Home-loan closer for National City Bank
Kyle Boyer: Bartender at Partners Bar
Mike Kilbourne: AmeriCorps worker, Kalamazoo Community Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services
Anna Schmitt: Server and bartender
Louis Cloise Stocking: Volunteer organizer for Michigan Medical Marijuana Association
Karen Wellman: Did not respond

Interestingly, five of the challengers (Boyd, Boyer, Schmitt, Stocking, and Kai Phillips) are in their twenties. Five of the candidates are black. Boyd's website lists a number of motorcycle-related websites and "oneness scriptures" from the Bible. Schmitt has a facebook group closed to nonmembers. Kilbourne is supported by Don Cooney.

That leaves the following three apparently credible challengers.
Aaron Davis: Restaurant hospitality manager for Greenleaf Hospitality Group
Terry L. Kuseske: Retired
Kai Phillips: Managing director of Yerasoft, a Web and software design firm

Examining their responses to the Gazette survey can help to distinguish the candidates.
17 Kalamazoo City Commission candidates vary on economic issues
Kalamazoo City Commission: Questions and answers
Kalamazoo City Commission: Meet the candidates

On the discrimination ordinance passed by the city commission, Kai Phillips, Aaron Davis, and Nicholas Boyd oppose the ordinance, and all the other candidates favor it.

On the issue of whether tax money should be used to build a downtown arena, Davis, Hopewell, Miller, and Schmitt said yes, Bean, Boyd, Boyer, Cooney, Kilbourne, Phillips, and Stocking said no, and Andersen, Ayers, Kuseske, McKinney, Moore, and Wellman did not clearly answer the question.

On the issue of whether the police should check the immigration status of criminals, Ayers and Phillips said yes, Boyer, Cooney, Hopewell, Kilbourne, Kueseske, McKinney, Moore, and Schmitt said no, and Andersen, Bean, Boyd, Davis, Miller, and Stocking did not clearly answer the question.

On whether the DPS should make marijuana its "lowest enforcement priority", Ayers, Boyer, Moore, Schmitt, and Stocking said yes, Hopewell, McKinney, Miller, and Phiilips said no, and Andersen, Bean, Boyd, Cooney, Davis, Kilbourne, Kuseske, and Wellman did not clearly answer the question.

On whether businesses that receive tax breaks should be required to hire the poor and felons, Ayers, Bean, Boyer, Cooney, Davis, and Kilbourne said yes, Andersen, Boyd, Hopewell, McKinney, Miller, Moore, Phillips, and Schmitt said no, and Kuseske, Stocking, and Wellman did not clearly answer the question.

On the Metro Transit tax on the ballot in Kalamazoo this November, everyone supports it except for Davis and Phillips who said no, and Boyer and Wellman who did not clearly answer the question.

On the issues, Kai Phillips is clearly the best. Aaron Davis is good on some issues such as the discrimination ordinance and Metro Transit tax, but not good on others.


This update focuses on liberalism. More continues to be revealed about Barack Obama.

Becky Akers: The New Face of Psychiatry
Phyllis Schlafly: If Obama Had Told Us Before His Election
Phyllis Schlafly: Singing Heil Obama in New Jersey
Selwyn Duke: Obama: Beyond the Idea of an Icon
Phyllis Schlafly: The Radical Policies of the NEA
Thomas Eddlem: In the Shadows of Promise

Much information on liberal individuals and organizations can be found at David Horowitz's Discover the Network site.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Governor Race Polls

Mike Cox and Pete Hoekstra lead the race for the Republican nomination. Cox is clearly the strongest candidate in the general election, leading John Cherry by 15 points. Hoekstra and Bouchard also lead, but Rick Snyder looks like a loser, trailing Cherrry. Voters simply don't like rich, self-funding candidates.



John Cherry (D): 33 (14)
Alma Wheeler Smith (D): 5 (2)
George Perles (D): 3 (2)
Don Williamson (D): 3 (1)
John Freeman (D): 2 (NA)
Undecided: 54 (26)

Peter Hoekstra (R): 29 (27)
Mike Cox (R): 28 (26)
Mike Bouchard (R): 14 (NA)
Rick Snyder (R): 3 (NA)
Tom George (R): 2 (1)
Undecided: 24 (25)
(MoE: ±4%)


John Cherry (D): 33 (36)
Peter Hoekstra (R): 40 (33)

John Cherry (D): 30 (36)
Mike Cox (R): 45 (35)

John Cherry (D): 30
Mike Bouchard (R): 39

John Cherry (D): 34
Rick Snyder (R): 32
(MoE: ±4%)

Attorney General Race Polling

Make of this what you will. It's still early, and some of it is probably name recognition. At least this poll claims that Mike Bishop would be a stronger candidate.


Results of the survey show that Mike Bishop has a 10% lead over Gretchen Whitmer (36%-26%) while Bill Schuette is tied with Whitmer (32%-32%).

In the press release sent to the Detroit News that printed the results of the survey on the Friday of the Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference, I said the following: ―Bishop is doing so much better statewide against Whitmer because of his lead in the Metro Detroit Area. Bishop leads by a 2:1 margin (43%-21%) in the vote rich Oakland, Macomb, St. Clair and Wayne County outside of Detroit area, while Schuette only has a 1% lead (31%-30%) there. At this point, Bishop is clearly the stronger candidate for Attorney General.‖

In 2002, Mike Cox was elected by just 5,600 votes statewide. Republicans need to nominate the strongest possible candidate in 2010 if it wants to elect a GOP attorney general. Mike Bishop begins the race with a 10% lead over a woman Democrat, while Bill Schuette is only tied with her. In a close race, having the lead Bishop has right now could be the difference between winning and losing next year.

Bishop’s strong support in the Detroit Metro Area is important. He will not have to spend as much money in the very expensive Detroit media market to get his message out as Schuette will have to spend. Conversely, Sen. Whitmer will have to spend much more money to beat Mike Bishop than she will have to spend in her attempt to beat Bill Schuette. That difference in spending alone could make it far more difficult for Democrats to win in 2010.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Wall Street Journal on Granholm

Read it all.

The State of Joblessness: The tragedy of Jennifer Granholm's Michigan

State lawmakers will soon face large budget deficits again, perhaps as much as $100 billion across the U.S. Here's some free budget-balancing advice: Steer clear of the Michigan model. The Wolverine state is once again set to run out of money, and it is once again poised to raise taxes even as jobs and businesses disappear.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Speech on Campus

Church and State: Why Christians are Dangerous to the US Government and why the Government needs them Anyway

Dr. Peter Wielhouwer

October 21, 2009, 7PM

Brown Hall

Sponsored by Intervarsity Christian Fellowship

NRA Alert

Important Pro-Gun Bills to be Considered in Michigan on Tuesday!

Friday, October 16, 2009

On Tuesday, October 20 at 10:30 a.m., the House Tourism, Outdoor Recreation and Natural Resources Committee will consider House Bill 5302 and House Bill 5303.

HB5302, introduced by State Representative Paul Opsommer (R-93), and HB5303, introduced by State Representative Joel Sheltrown (D-103), would prohibit employers from firing employees who safely and lawfully store their firearms in locked vehicles while at work.

Please contact the members of the House Tourism, Outdoor Recreation and Natural Resources Committee TODAY and respectfully encourage them to vote in support of HB5302 and HB5303. Contact information for the committee members can be found below.

Best Comment Ever

Blog comments are like precious gems to polished and admired. Truly such eloquence has seldom been seen before, nor likely will be seen again, in the English language.


Conservative Second said...

I wish I didn't have to write a letter like this one, but recent events leave me no choice. Let me make clear what is foremost on my mind and what the focus of this letter will be: if I said that we should avoid personal responsibility, I'd be a liar. But I'd be being thoroughly honest if I said that we should analyze WMU College Republicans's opinions in the manner of sociological studies of mass communication and persuasion. (Goodness knows, our elected officials aren't going to.) WMU College Republicans truly believes that advertising is the most veridical form of human communication. I hope you realize that that's just a pea-brained pipe dream from a bumptious pipe and that in the real world, WMU College Republicans's proxies are merely ciphers. WMU College Republicans is the one who decides whether or not to do exactly the things it accuses uncontrollable dipsomaniacs of doing. WMU College Republicans is the one who gives out the orders to protect undeserved privilege. And WMU College Republicans is the one trying to conceal how all it really wants is to hang onto the perks it's getting from the system. That's all it really cares about.

Personally, I don't expect WMU College Republicans to give up its crusade to make excessive use of foul language, but we'll see. WMU College Republicans is more dangerous than other annoying misers because the spoiled, pampered offspring of the cosseted upper class actually believe WMU College Republicans when it says that ebola, AIDS, mad-cow disease, and the hantavirus were intentionally bioengineered by tactless egotists for the purpose of population reduction. I cannot believe how many actual, physical, breathing, thinking people have fallen for WMU College Republicans's subterfuge. I'm entirely stunned. In a previous letter, I announced my intention to confront and reject all manifestations of adversarialism. Naturally, this announcement caused WMU College Republicans to mutter abuses befitting its character. Incidents like that truly demonstrate how the world is suffering from its lack of faith in a transcendental truth. That concept can be extended, mutatis mutandis, to the way that WMU College Republicans's true goal is to arrest and detain its enemies indefinitely without charge, without trial, and without access to legal counsel. All the statements that its thralls make to justify or downplay that goal are only apologetics; they do nothing to upbraid WMU College Republicans for being so judgmental.

WMU College Republicans claims that all minorities are poor, stupid ghetto trash. Well, I beg to differ. Should this be discussed in school? You bet. That's the function of education: To teach students how to establish a supportive—rather than an intimidating—atmosphere for offering public comment. WMU College Republicans's harangues will have consequences—very serious consequences. We ought to begin doing something about that. We ought to express our concerns about WMU College Republicans's flippant reportages. We ought to spread the word that I have a dream that my children will be able to live in a world filled with open spaces and beautiful wilderness—not in a dark, self-deceiving world run by ultra-unctuous caitiffs. Anyhow, I guess I've run out of things to say, so let me just leave you with one parting wish: Together, may we condemn—without hesitation, without remorse—all those who erode constitutional principles that have shaped our society and remain at the core of our freedom and liberty.

October 13, 2009 7:35 AM

POLITICAL UPDATE--Environmentalism

This update focuses on environmentalism. The myth of global warming continues to collapse. A cap and trade bill to wreck America's economy continues to be considered in Congress.

Pat Buchanan: Global Warming And The Second Battle of Copenhagen
William Hoar: Global Warming: Scaring Up More Controls
Floy Lilley: Global Warming Scandals
Ed Hiserodt: Cap and Trade
James Perloff: Exposing the Green World Order
Vin Supynowicz: Drive a Big SUV for Mother Earth
William Hoar: Taxing Energy in the Name of Climate Change

POLITICAL UPDATES are archived here.

Local News

Local news around Kalamazoo.

Kalamazoo pastor J. Louis Felton takes middle road in ordinance debate
Downtown arena, budget cuts among issues at commission candidate forums
Most Kalamazoo City Commission candidates at forum say they support gay-rights ordinance
Celebration Kalamazoo! event urges respect in gay-rights debate

Portage attorney challenges legality of speeding ticket received on Stadium Drive in Kalamazoo
Kalamazoo Metro Transit tax supporters are cautiously optimistic
Arena plan draws mixed reviews at Western Michigan University
Proposed Bill to allow students to carry concealed weapons on campus
Millage needed to save Kalamazoo Metro Transit
Western Michigan University and Kalamazoo College are prepared for flu
Your arena here?

Friday, October 16, 2009

Analysis of Portage City Council Races

Among the races to be decided in November are five spots on the Portage City Council. The elections are nonpartisan.

Jobs, weathering the economy are priorities for Portage candidates

Portage City Council: Questions and answers

Portage City Council: Meet the candidates

There is the Mayor of Portage, which is elected every two years. Mayor Peter Strazdas is running unopposed for reelection. Strazdas is a moderate to conservative Republican who seems to have done a decent job. He opposes raising taxes.

There are three four year seats on the council up for election. The three incumbents, Claudette Reid, Ed Sackley, and Terry Urban are all running for reelection. They are being challenged by Cory Bailes. The three incumbents are all fairly moderate, while Bailes' political preferences are unknown at this time.

There is one two-year partial term up for election. This seat is currently held by Ted Vliek, who is not seeking reelection. He filled the seat following the vacancy created when Larry DeShazor was elected to the state legislature. There are four candidates running for the seat: Tom Fox, Jim Pearson, Patricia Randall, and Phil Stinchcomb. Stinchcomb is a conservative, while the political preferences of the others are unclear.

All the candidates seem fairly credible and capable. Strazdas and the four candidates seeking the partial term have all ruled out raising taxes, while the incumbents and Bailes have all hedged their answers on the question.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Gazette Election Guide

The Gazette has its election guide online.

City of Kalamazoo:

17 Kalamazoo City Commission candidates vary on economic issues
Kalamazoo City Commission: Questions and answers
Kalamazoo City Commission: Meet the candidates

1. What should be the No. 1 priority of the next City Commission?
2. Declining residential and commercial property values and stock-market losses in the city’s pension fund are creating shortfalls. Recognizing that most of the budget goes to employee salaries, specifically what services would you cut or what revenues would you increase? Be specific.
3. Kalamazoo City Commission: Do you favor or oppose the anti-discrimination ordinance? Why?
4. Would you support a 1 percent tax on meals and drinks served in Kalamazoo County restaurants and bars to build an arena in downtown Kalamazoo? Would you support $4.5 million in city money proposed for related infrastructure costs?
5. On a traditional A-to-F grading scale, what grade would you give the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety and why? Has the department gotten better or worse under Chief Jeff Hadley?
6. Public Safety Chief Jeff Hadley has said the department has no intention of enforcing federal immigration laws. Do you agree with this position? Why?
7. The next City Commission could be asked to consider a measure that would make policing marijuana the city’s “lowest enforcement priority.” Would you support or oppose such a measure? Why?
8. Some groups have advocated requiring businesses receiving tax abatements to allocate a percentage of the jobs they promise to create to low-income individuals or ex-felons. Do you support such a requirement?
9. A millage request for 0.6 of 1 mill to fund Metro Transit is on the city’s ballot Nov. 3. Do you favor or oppose this levy? Why?
10. How should the City Commission balance spending for downtown development and residential revitalization projects?

City of Portage:

Jobs, weathering the economy are priorities for Portage candidates
Portage City Council: Questions and answers
Portage City Council: Meet the candidates

1. What should be the No. 1 priority of the next Portage City Council?
2. Declining property values are creating serious budget problems for Portage, and shortfalls for other communities. Recognizing that most of the budget goes to employee salaries, specifically what services would you cut or what revenues would you increase?
3. What qualifies you to serve on the Portage City Council?
4. The council has recently looked at its industrial tax-break policy and questioned if it should be changed. Do you favor the current policy or would you prefer to see changes made?
5. The city has maintained the same millage level for several years. In today’s tough economic times,should the city consider having a millage election to increase the general fund budget levy of 7.5 mills?
6. Portage has been proud of not laying off city workers to deal with declining revenue, instead relying on retirements and attrition for a smaller staff size. Does it appear layoffs might be needed, though, to balance the next budget in2010?
7. The recent council has said that it feels it is offering a “transparent” government process that is open and responsive to residents’ concerns, from dealings with city staff to bringing matters to the council. Do you agree?
8. Substance abuse involving young people has been identified as a big concern in recent years in Portage.Do you believe the city has addressed that issue and, if not, what should it do?
9. What do you see as the biggest problem Portage must deal with in the coming year, and how would you deal with it?


This update focuses on national sovereignty. America's sovereignty continues to be threatened by the United Nations and potential plans for a North American Union.

Phyllis Schlafly: UNESCO Gets off the Track Again
Alex Newman: G-20 Advances New World Order, Media Admit
Kurt Williamsen: Law of the Sea Treaty: Through Rose-colored Goggles?
Beverly Eakman: Beware UN’s Convention on the Rights of the Child
Phyllis Schlafly: What Happened in Guadalajara
Thomas Eddlem: North American Leaders Summit This Weekend
Warren Mass: Clinton Stumps for International Criminal Court

United Nations: Eagle Forum: United Nations
North American Union: Eagle Forum Stop SPP
Trans-Texas Corridor: Corridor Watch

Local News

Local news around Kalamazoo.

Diocese of Kalamazoo opposes gay-rights ordinance
Anti-discrimination vote grabs spotlight in Kalamazoo
The Bible and homosexuality: Pastors offer differing views

Zoning board rejects request for K-Christian athletic field lights
Peace: Local protesters call for U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan
Vigil marks 8th anniversary of war in Afghanistan
Cable TV thefts lead to service cuts for 400 in Kalamazoo
Portage City Council taking action on complaints over assessor
Kalamazoo City Commission election draws 17 candidates
Kalamazoo County budget calls for pay increases
Michigan GOP Faces Tough Choice in Race for Governor

Western Michigan University President John M. Dunn ready to take med school to board
Preserving East Hall: Ivy-clad halls at Western Michigan University getting unclad
Senate panel votes to lift Colony Farm rules

Friday, October 09, 2009

The Truth Comes Out

From the Detroit News:

Students' behavior at GOP event questioned

Lansing -- Questions continue to be raised about the behavior of college students at the state Republicans' leadership conference on Mackinac Island with some asked to vow to vote for their candidates or risk losing their rooms and others charging that underage drinking was rampant.

Gubernatorial hopeful Rick Snyder has been accused of capturing the top spot in an exclusive Detroit News/WJR NewsTalk 760 AM straw poll during the Sept. 25-27 gathering by having students sign a letter vowing to vote for the Ann Arbor businessman in the poll or risk losing the free hotel rooms and island ferry rides.


Some of the hundreds of bright-green clad students who Snyder brought to the island were asked to sign a "contract" which reads, in part: "I have read the above and understand that my staying in a Rick for Michigan sponsored hotel room and traveling on a Rick for Michigan ferry is contingent upon voting for Rick Snyder in the straw poll."

Snyder campaign spokesman Jake Suski said the form was created to help ferret out "infiltrators" from other campaigns who were trying to get a free trip and didn't support Snyder. He also noted the island was swarming with volunteers sent by other candidates, lobbying firms and the Republican Party.

"To come up with our group and not to support Rick or to support other candidates would have been dishonest," Suski said.

Mike Cox 2010 spokesman Stu Sandler said Cox's campaign also brought a large number of volunteers to the island, and the campaign paid for their meals and accommodations. The volunteers signed an agreement they would represent Cox admirably, wouldn't break the law and wouldn't drink underage, but he said voting for Cox wasn't part of the deal. The attorney general came in second.

"The straw poll had nothing to do with it," Sandler said. "Part of it's to operate the functions.


From RightMichigan:

Is Snyder From Ann Arbor.. or Chicago??

Apparently Tim Skubick has the memo:

The following memo reached this desk in which the Snyder folks look like their learned how to play politics in Chicago's Cook County which is notorious for questionable activity.

In it Snyder supporters are advised that "you are in no way required to vote for any candidate, disclose or show your ballot to anyone." All nice and proper, with no gripes there.

Ah but read on: "However, in order to remain eligible for Rick for Michigan receptions, ferry's (to and from the island) and hotel room, you must show your ballot to Rick's official representative at the ballot box...." Hum, this is getting interesting.

And just to make sure none of the volunteers for Ricky didn't miss the point, they were asked to sign a document that was blunt: "I have read and understand that by staying in a Rick for Michigan sponsored hotel room and traveling on a Rick for Michigan ferry is contingent upon voting for Rick Snyder in the straw poll."

Sowell on Strategy

A good column by Thomas Sowell with an ever-timely message:

Republicans and Blacks

The Republican strategy for making inroads into the black vote has failed consistently for more than a quarter of a century. Yet it never seems to occur to them to change their approach.

The first thing that they do that is foredoomed to failure is trying to reach blacks through the civil rights organizations and other institutions of the black establishment. The second proven loser is trying to appeal to blacks by offering the same kinds of things that Democrats offer-- token honors, politically correct rhetoric and welfare state benefits.


Trying to reach blacks through civil rights organizations that are totally hostile to your message is like a quarterback trying to throw a pass to a receiver surrounded by opposing defenders. That just leads to a lot of interceptions and touchdowns for the other team.

That is essentially what has been happening to the Republicans, as far as the black vote is concerned, for decades on end. Someone once said that a method which fails repeatedly may possibly be wrong.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Cox Leads Again

Poll shows edge for Cox as GOP opens leadership conference

Cox leads Lt. Gov. John Cherry, the front-runner for the Democratic nomination, 45 percent to 32 percent in a survey of 600 likely voters conducted by Mitchell Research & Communications Inc. and provided to The Detroit News.

In a smaller sample of 209 likely Republican voters, Cox drew 30 percent support, followed by U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra of Holland at 23 percent, then Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard at 11 percent and Ann Arbor investor Rick Snyder and state Sen. Tom George of Kalamazoo at 2 percent, with one-third undecided.

Pollster Steve Mitchell said Cox has "a solid lead" but the large number of undecided voters means the contest is up for grabs.


The Mitchell survey also paired up potential Republican attorney general candidates Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop of Rochester and former congressman and Court of Appeals Judge Bill Schuette against a leading Democratic candidate, Sen. Gretchen Whitmer of East Lansing. Bishop led Whitmer 36 percent to 26 percent, while Schuette and Whitmer were tied at 32 percent in the poll.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Self Defense

Teen Scares Off Burgulars (MI)

Government in Action

This is another great example of government bureaucracy in action. Remember, government will fix health care and the economy if only we give people like this a little more power.


Michigan Mom Told to Stop Baby-sitting

It takes a village to raise a child, except when the government gets involved.

In a small rural Michigan township southeast of Grand Rapids, Lisa Snyder volunteered to do a favor for a few neighborhood mothers, and watch their children for an hour before school so the mothers could get to work on time. She helps them get to the bus safely, and does not take money for it.

A neighbor reported this activity to the Michigan Department of Human Services (DHS), and in a spasm of regulatory over-kill, the agency sent a cease-and-desist letter to Snyder right after the school year started. In it, the DHS demanded that she stop helping her neighbors by providing an "illegal daycare operation," because she was not a licensed day-care center.

A Michigan law prohibits persons from caring for unrelated children in their home for more than four weeks each calendar year unless they are licensed day-care providers. Violation of the law is a criminal misdemeanor and can result in fines and jail time.

After getting the letter, Snyder, a stay-at-home mother, contacted the Department of Human Services, but she "got nowhere."

Somehow this situation came to the attention of higher-ups in the government, and this week the Governor of Michigan, Jennifer Granholm, publicly weighed in on the matter. She instructed the agency Director, Ismael Ahmedm, to work with the State Legislature to try to change the law.

Yesterday, Michigan State Rep. Brian Calley (R-Portland) said he was working to draft legislation that would exempt situations like Snyder's from coverage under Michigan's current day-care regulations. "The bill will make it clear that people who aren't in business as day care providers don't need to be licensed," Calley said.

Ironically, Snyder was threatened with jail for providing a service to her community, a "crime" for which another tax-funded state agency may bestow an award to her. The State of Michigan funds the Michigan Community Service Commission (MCSC), whose mission is to "build a culture of service by providing vision and resources to strengthen communities through volunteerism," and "to help individuals get involved in their local communities." Outstanding volunteers are even given special service awards by the Governor.

Apparently, volunteerism is not legal unless it is done under the watchful eye of the government.


This update focuses on immigration.

Michelle Malkin: ACORN's Illegal Alien Home Loan Racket
Steve Sailer: The First Thing We Do, Let’s Abolish The Hispanics!
Robert Engstrom: ProEnglish Makes Case for Official Language
James Edwards: The New Case Against Immigration: Both Legal and Illegal
Peter Brimelow: Building the New Majority—Peter Brimelow's Speech To The American Cause
Alex Newman: Immigration News Update
Terry Jeffrey: Harry Reid's Assault on American Workers

For more on immigration, see