Friday, January 18, 2013

State of the State - OCCUPIED

Wednesday January 16, 2013 Governor Rick Snyder had a date with Michigan Legislators to offer them his take on the State of the State. The people were not going to let that be a peaceful event! Activists came from around the state with a number of messages. We greeted people arriving for the invitation only event and many concerned legislators said "Thank you for being here!" We were welcomed with signs from fellow demonstrators saying:

  • Right To Work is Wrong
  • Michigan is Fracked 
  • Idle No More
  • Snyder is a Liar
Many people attending on the lawn had plenty of additional sentiments. Some carried photos of congress people with a red SHAME stamp across them. The state is in an uproar as it starts 2013, in the wake of over 282 bills passing in the past 30 days of 2012.

It isn't only the laws which are recently passed, many are concerned about the future. The entire lower peninsula of Michigan is "fracking ready" according to current laws. Activists are gathering at events offering media exposure to make sure environmental issues in Michigan are in front of many eyes. We need to wake up to the effects of climate change 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Doug Geiss - NO to Jase Bolger as Speaker of House

Posted tonight by Doug Geiss as why he made a nearly unprecedented vote against Bolger.

"I voted against Representative Jase Bolger becoming the Speaker of the House of Representatives today, the first time in my lifetime that a Speaker received any "No" votes. Dian Slavens joined me in a final 107-2 vote.

Here are my reasons, as will appear in the House Journal:

I cast a no vote for Representative Bolger for the position of Speaker today, because I do not believe he is the correct person to lead the Michigan House of Representative. I could have cast a yes vote for any other member of the majority party, other than Representative Bolger. This is my first and only opportunity to weigh in on the actions taken by Representative Bolger during the 96th Legislature. Based on past actions, I cannot see improved working relations or practices taking place under the leadership of Representative Bolger.

First and foremost, the lack of ethics exhibited by Representative Bolger during the last legislature reflects poorly on the institution of the Michigan House of Representatives. While it was political to orchestrate the party switch of Representative Roy Schmidt, it was abhorrent that the then Speaker also worked to have a false Democratic candidate file to run in the same election, in an attempt to keep a real Democrat from filing to run. This is political gamesmanship unprecedented in Michigan history. Not only did Representative Bolger coordinate this abomination of the electoral process, but he lied about his involvement in the process. This cannot be condoned.

Next, the Representative Bolger orchestrated cuts to Michigan's public schools and taxes on Michigan's seniors, in order to pay for a $1.8 Billion tax cut for Michigan's businesses. While talking about making Michigan more competitive for businesses, Representative Bolger failed to discuss the negative impact of the cuts in school funding on our children and the inability of those living on a fixed income from affording these new taxes. I did not support those actions and am fearful of similar additional burdens on Michigan's families in the 97th Legislature.

Finally, Representative Bolger rammed through legislation in the lame duck session which concluded the 96th session. In particular, the Freedom to Freeload legislation was introduced and passed through our chamber in less than two session days of the House of Representatives. There were no committee hearings for this legislation. There was plenty of time to have them. I personally attended numerous meetings of the House Education Committee and the Insurance Committee during November and December, while many of my colleagues were hunting or on break. If this process was correct for deliberation of the EAA legislation and the Blue Cross/Blue Shield legislation, then why was it not proper for the most onerous changes affecting labor in Michigan's history? The reason is that Representative Bolger knew that a majority of Michigan's residents did not support the Freedom to Freeload legislation and that it would not stand the light of day. This is contrary to the true nature of our legislative process, to talk, discuss and ultimately vote on vital issues to the people of the State of Michigan.

If, in the spirit of bipartisanship, my colleagues and I are being asked to forgive and forget these transgressions, then so to should my historic no vote for the election of Speaker Bolger be forgiven. This is the cathartic process of stating your opinion for the record, then moving on to new challenges and issues facing the people of the State of Michigan. I look forward to serving the people of Romulus, Taylor and Van Buren Township, and all of Michigan, for the next two years."

Doug Geiss on passage of Right To Work bill on December 11, 2012

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Instant-Mix Imperial Democracy, Buy One Get One Free

We have been on REWIND for a DECADE since this speech by Arundhati Roy was delivered in 2003. It is time to awaken from the sickness and demand truth and justice for all - as we the people declared at the onset of this nation.

But we declare this now not as imperialist conquerors of a land filled with indigenous people,
oppressing the masses, denouncing the working class and poor. 
It is time for the humble to take their place and inherit the world as they are due.

The spirit which founded the United States of America through the Declaration of Independence, US Constitution and the US Bill of Rights grants the people of the nation the ability to hold our government in check should it be misguided. That time of misguidance has arrived and the mainstream press is not serving the public. The United States and the State of Michigan have declared war upon the people, violating the voice and right of the people whom it claims to serve. We know it not to be in service - it has been oppressing the people, controlling mainstream press, and have overturned the purpose of democracy.

This representative democracy has evolved into an autocratic ruling power. We are calling it to task through requests for information to honor the transparency ensured to the people. The people will stand in audit of the government and we demand justice in the truth to be revealed. We realize that the full depth of truth will be concealed even through what is revealed by the ruling class and those corporate entities which work through it. Our government has been sold out to special interests whom have preyed upon the people.

As stated in the speech, which can be read in its entirety through this link - taking action matters.
It would be naive to imagine that we can directly confront Empire. Our strategy must be to isolate Empire's working parts and disable them one by one. No target is too small. No victory too insignificant.
We must mobilize on EVERY FRONT on EVERY ISSUE. It is all worthwhile to protest and denounce. Use our press, the voice of the people, speaking, writing, recording, sharing. It is a responsibility and duty to ourselves and to each other. As she states in the lecture in closing SEIZE THE TIME.


CRS Annotated US Constitution 2nd Amendment in the Legal Information Institute of Cornell University Law School 
We is a fast-paced 64 minute documentary that covers the world politics of power, war, corporations, deception and exploitation. (Unfortunately Google video service has changed since this site was created, thus  it is broken in many ways.) Below is the video...