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    Tag: Mackinac center

    Don't Bail Out Detroit

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Thu Jan 16, 2014 at 10:19:48 AM EST
    Tags: Mackinac Center, Detroit, Bailouts, DIA, Taxes, Fiscal Malpractice (all tags)

    Apparently, there is a caveat to recent 'good news' for the DIA.

    Reposted from The Mackinac Center for Public Policy in time for Rick Snyder's State of the state address tonight:

    Don't Bail Out Detroit with State Tax Dollars

    By Michael Lafaive
    The recent announcement that philanthropic foundations may donate $330 million to help the Detroit Institute of Arts, which would also help city pensioners avoid the consequences of Detroit government mismanagement, sounds like great news.

    Unfortunately, there may be a hook: A requirement that the state treasury contribute, which would convert voluntary private generosity into a coerced taxpayer bailout.

    A state bailout of Detroit is a terrible idea. It creates moral hazard and adds to the overly generous financial support the city has for years received from state taxpayers.

    And it's unfair. ~ Continued below the fold

    (4 comments, 722 words in story) Full Story

    Mackinac Center On Fox News

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Sat Dec 14, 2013 at 10:10:13 AM EST
    Tags: Michigan Education Association, MEA, Miriam Chanski, Contracts, August Window, RTW, FTW, Patrick Wright, Mackinac Center, Legal Foundation, Neal Erickson, Public Schools (all tags)

    As you might know, the Mackinac Center Legal Foundation is representing kindergarten teacher Miriam Chanski, and others,in a class suit against the Michigan education association.

    The foundation explains:

    "The Mackinac Center Legal Foundation is filing a lawsuit on behalf of Miriam Chanski and several other plaintiffs against the Michigan Education Association over the union's misreading of Michigan's right-to-work law. The union is enforcing an outdated policy referred to as the "August Window," which limits members' ability to exercise their first amendment rights to one month out of the year.  .. "
    And elsewhere, the MEA is pushing its own rules, or at least those it sees in a contract it says must be enforced
    "On March 26, 2013 WB-RC officials offered a $10,000 buyout for any qualifying teacher who left the school district that year, an incentive superintendent Dan Cwayna said the district had used in the past to encourage needed staff reductions.

    While its not clear when Erickson's employment was terminated, the union's action suggests he was still on the payroll when the buyout was offered and accepted it.

    The school district declined to pay him the money, prompting the union's action."

    Which brings us to last nights discussion on Hannity with Patrick Wright, and plaintiff Miriam Chanski.

    Comments >>

    A Message To Our Legislators - Beware False Choices

    Its About Force

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Tue Nov 26, 2013 at 08:42:56 PM EST
    Tags: Michigan, Mackinac Center, Elections, Ruth Johnson, Transparency, State Senate, SB661, Reporting Requirements, Hidden Agendas, Force, Government, Compulsion, The Hammer (all tags)

    Folks at The Mackinac Center and I will nearly NEVER disagree.

    Particularly on issues of such magnitude as transparency or government influence in our daily lives. Yet a presumed difference between private and government monetary involvement on any issue seems to be enough to persuade its scholars that transparency is not an absolute.  Where government monies are spent it seems, is far more important to your freedoms than that which is expended to influence those expenditures or other acts. And that personal monies expended to influence government are not necessarily an impact on any personal liberties to warrant a demand for transparency.

    We DO agree that limits should be removed from campaign finance. We agree that limiting to an arbitrary amount can impede free speech and political expression. What is considered a fair contribution into the process is a completely subjective matter that can only be resolved by the person who is willing to contribute into that process.  A person's individual priorities and where a subject reaches a level of importance are hardly the providence of external assignment.

    Thus the most accurate manner in which to protect what is a sovereign right is to allow, nay, PROTECT, that person's ability to engage in the process at a level appropriate to that person alone. Our place, and that of government should be to prevent that which would infringe on such activity and instead encourage a stake in the game.

    In other words, if an individual wishes to personally expend $1 Million on a county commission race for a friend, there should be no objection from government. If it was to advocate bonding for a new swimming pool in a community, that money expended by itself guarantees no votes, and it is that person's right to seek such approvals.

    And anyhow, some things can be overdone.

    Go below the fold for more.

    (2 comments, 1192 words in story) Full Story

    The Rest Of The Story

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Fri Aug 23, 2013 at 09:47:47 AM EST
    Tags: Michigan, Mackinac Center, Labor, Right to Work, Freedom To Work, FTW, RTW, Teamsters, Dearborn (all tags)

    If one was to only read the story today by Tom Gantert at Capitol Confidential, it might seem strange that the Mackinac Center advocates a very oppressive position.

    A quick read of the article makes it seem that the Mackinac Center is suing the Teamsters to compel them to represent a non-paying employee in a grievance action. It seemed strange to read:

    "The Mackinac Center Legal Foundation filed a lawsuit Thursday on behalf of four former Teamsters union workers who say charging them a fee to file a grievance because they opted out of paying dues is in violation of the right-to-work law passed in December.

    Teamsters Local 214 in the city of Dearborn said effective July 1, it would charge $150 to employees who opted out of paying union dues to file a grievance, according to the lawsuit. .."

    But.. aren't they NOT paying for that service?

    Gantert's story DOES reference the key:

    "The lawsuit contends that even though the four employees no longer pay dues, they still are forced to be represented by the union."
    However, it is something that might also be said to mean 'the union still negotiates the salary/benefits'; often used to make the 'free-rider' argument by labor supporters.

    The real story lies elsewhere.

    Continued below the fold.

    (1 comment, 661 words in story) Full Story

    Open Government Initiative / FOIA Town Hall Meeting

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Wed Jul 10, 2013 at 08:30:48 AM EST
    Tags: FOIA, Open Government, Mackinac Center, Citizen Watchdog (all tags)

    Looking for training on how to be a better watchdog?

    The Mackinac Center is hosting a series of community events aimed at raising awareness of common problems encountered by those who attempt to request government records and provide information to those who want a better understanding of how the Freedom of Information Act and Open Meetings Act work. Our state has valuable tools for holding public servants accountable but those tools are useless if people don't know about them or don't know how to use them.

    Tony Conley, host of "The Tony Conley Show" on Lansing's WILS AM1320, will be moderating this event.

    The panelists will be:

    • Mike Steinberg, Legal Director, ACLU
    • Robin Luce-Herrmann, General Counsel, Michigan Press Association
    • Patrick Wright, Director, Mackinac Center Legal Foundation
    • John Bebow, President, The Center for Michigan/Bridge Magazine

    This event is free and open to the public. No RSVP is needed!

    The event will be held on Wednesday, July 17, 2013 from 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. at Baker College of Jackson, 2800 Springport Road, Jackson, Mich. 49202

    If you cannot make it to Baker College next Thursday, mark your calendar for one of three other options. The calendar at the bottom has these dates set as well.

    • July 24 in Grand Rapids
    • Aug. 1 in Traverse City
    • Aug. 7 in Troy

    Visit Mackinac for more details about these events.

    Comments >>

    Cliff Taylor New MCPP Chair

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Mon Jan 14, 2013 at 02:44:31 PM EST
    Tags: Mackinac Center, Cliff Taylor, Good Year, Chairman, Free Markets, Michigan Supreme Court (all tags)

    Its gotta be a good year for Cliff.

    First it starts off with the appropriate culling of hypocrisy as seen in the Diane Hathaway debacle.  Hathaway, of course was the recipient of the infamous sleeping judges ad, where in a lie, an actor was hired to 'represent' justice Taylor sleeping while on duty.  Hathaway won easily at that time as Michiganders were horrified to think that such a thing could happen on the Michigan Supreme Court.  Strangely, there was nary a peep THIS TIME from the folk calling foul in THAT election, but for a few "I don't cares" coming from the lefty side apologists.

    Clifford Taylor wins the moral battle to be sure.

    And as seen with a recent appointment, he is still an impressive force in the Michigan theater.

    Press release below the fold.

    (503 words in story) Full Story

    Mackinac Center LIVE Webinar Today Noon

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 at 10:30:19 AM EST
    Tags: Mackinac Center, Michigan, Proposals, Discussion, Webinar, Participation (all tags)

    Confused about the ballot proposals? Hear specific information from policy experts on each of the proposals at our live webinar on Tues., Oct. 30. Each of the ballot proposals will be explained and viewers will be able to submit questions that will be directly answered by the speakers.

    TODAY! Tuesday, October 30, 2012  12:00 p.m.

    Hosted by Manny Lopez

    Go below the fold to watch and participate.  If I have screwed up the code irretrievably, the original site location is at http://www.mackinac.org/17764

    (1 comment, 146 words in story) Full Story

    Developing - On Proposal 2

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Tue Oct 23, 2012 at 03:31:59 PM EST
    Tags: Michigan, Proposal 2, MPA, Mackinac Center, Unions (all tags)

    This is not a very common occurrence, in fact, this might be the first time MPA has EVER made an endorsement  on a statewide ballot proposal.

    I guess its THAT serious.

    It has to do with transparency.  Its hard to hold folks accountable without it.  The Michigan Press Association and Mackinac Center issued a Joint Statement today. According to the press release:

    If passed with a "yes" vote, these organizations argue, stipulations in government collective bargaining agreements would trump the Freedom of Information Act, among other laws. The Freedom of Information Act guarantees that public documents remain available to public scrutiny, subject to some limitations.
    Pah.. we trust the union folks who will be in charge to fill us in appropriately.

    They are always so upfront with the truth.

    Stay tuned.

    Comments >>

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