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View Diary: Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder deals democracy another blow (291 comments)

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  •  Is Detroit what success looks like? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PatriciaVa, Sparhawk, Utahrd, Midwest Meg

    The EM law is a problem.  But I think Detroit is the bigger problem.  Saying "no EM law" is fine, and I agree with that.  But a return to the status quo won't do much good for Detroit, not to mention the other cities with emergency managers.  They're going broke and there's dysfunctional government at many levels.

    •  How is there ever a bigger problem (4+ / 0-)

      than suppressing voting rights in a democracy?

      •  Would you be OK with a democratically elected... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Utahrd, Midwest Meg

        ..mayor who, upon ascension to the office, simply said,

        (i) I don't have enough tax receipts,

        (ii) taxes are already too high,

        (iii) I don't have a mandate to consolidate the city into 60% of its current area, and

        (iv) the public markets won't lend us a dime, so,

        I  am cutting city salaries and pension benefits by 50%, effective immediately.

        And if city workers resist, they can sue the city.  I will tell a judge that the money is simply not there.

        Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project.

        by PatriciaVa on Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 02:22:54 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Sorry, but what you're talking about (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          urnumbersix, Aquarius40, COBALT1928

          is not how democracy works.  It's not "people can vote for whoever they want to represent them as long as they do a good job."

          Why is it ok to take  that away?  You still have not answered that question.  Rather, you have responded to my question simply by asking other questions.

          Not once have you given any answer as to why you feel it is acceptable to do away with one of the fundamental principles of a democracy and disenfranchise an entire city.

          •  Detroit has a Mayoral election this summer (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Utahrd, Midwest Meg, nextstep

            What are the proposed solutions put forth by the candidates?

            Detroit has a budget deficit of over 30% of the 1.1B budget.

            How do the candidates propose to close that gap.

            They can't borrow money, as the markets are closed.

            So, do they plan to increase taxes by 320M?

            Or will they cut expenses by 320M?

            Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project.

            by PatriciaVa on Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 02:33:28 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Again, you refuse to actually answer my question. (4+ / 0-)

              In a democracy, why is it acceptable to disenfranchise an entire city of people because their elected government has failed them?

              I have asked you this numerous times, and you have consistently failed to answer it.

              •  My answer (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                It is acceptable because it there is no "right" to electing your city government, and taking away the city government's power seems to be the best solution to the problem.

                The people of Michigan have been patiently waiting for 40 years for the people of Detroit to elect someone who won't continue to lead the entire metro area into economic oblivion, and that hasn't worked.  At some point you have to try another way.

        •  A democratically-elected mayor? Yes. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          COBALT1928, varro

          A state governor, acting through a lame-duck legislator's law?  No.  

          Technically, cities and towns exist at the pleasure of the state.  There is an issue called "subsidiarity", which was at one time in the heart of conservatism and that states that social issues should be taken care of by the smallest unit possible, be it the family, the neighborhood, the city, the state, the nation or an international body.  

          The remedies already exist in bankruptcy court.  Detroit would have to face an unelected judge chosen pretty much at random with the power to sell off assets.  The problem is that the Governor wants to choose who would sell off the assets, and that presents a grand opportunity for corruption.  

          Where's Mr. Fitzgerald when you need him?  

          "Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage." -- Lucille Ball

          by Yamaneko2 on Sat Mar 02, 2013 at 01:52:20 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •   (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sparhawk, MGross, RationalistSF

        You don't have voting rights at the local level unless the state constitution allows it or if the legislature allows it. Remember: sovereignty only exists at the level of the federal and state governments.

        Fight SPAM tyranny - Use Lion-Mail.NET for e-mail

        by takascar2 on Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 02:25:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  There was no return to the "status quo." (5+ / 0-)

      that's a right wing lie that's been used to justify the EM law. The Detroit City Council signed a consent agreement under the threat of an EM by Governor Snyder. The governor hired a financial board who was supposed to handle Detroit's finances without dissolving all of the duties of the City Council. The financial board did absolutely nothing because the goal was to put an EM in place anyway. If folks paid attention, throughout the whole ordeal, Governor Snyder kept moving the goal posts for Detroit to avoid an EM.

      So no, it's not the "status quo."

      Governor Snyder doesn't give a darn about Detroit's citizens. All he cares about is satisfying the Koch Brothers, ALEC and the DeVos family. Michigan is a test case for how to dismantle democracy and destroy the Democratic Party.

      "If it's somebody from The Bronx versus anybody else... always vote on the person from The Bronx."- Keith Olbermann

      by shanay on Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 03:38:54 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not that I doubt what you said, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        as it's my general understanding of events, but since I haven't been as up on the details as I would prefer, could you post some good links about your first paragraph?

      •  Assume the EM law never existed at all (0+ / 0-)

        Would Detroit be in less of a bind than it is?  That's what I meant by "status quo".  Obviously, the EM law's existence led to actions by the city that might not otherwise have occurred, but I doubt that changed Detroit's vector much.  

        To reiterate, I'm not saying that the EM law helps matters any.  AFAICT, it's a money grab by monied interests, and it's being positioned as something along the lines of Mussolini making the trains run on time (a fiction, of course, but Rethugs are big on fantasyland).

        I am saying that Detroit has big problems, and just taking away the EM law amounts to squat for the burned-out cities that are the current subjects of the EM law.  When you think about getting rid of the EM law, think about replacing the law with some other action that actually HELPS the cities and isn't just the latest in an endless succession of bandaids.  Otherwise, it's "Democrats with no plan" vs. "Rethugs with a plan".  

      •  I heard a report yesterday that certain proposals (0+ / 0-)

        we're made an accepted by the city council, but never implemented.

        If the city government is moribund, what is the solution?

        It’s the Supreme Court, stupid! Followed by: It's always the Supreme Court! Progressives will win only when we convince a majority that they, too, are Progressive.

        by auapplemac on Sun Mar 03, 2013 at 01:25:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

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