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Friday, December 09, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Friday, December 9, 2005

 

Environmental Groups & Scientists Warn of Great Lakes Collapse

The Detroit News reports that a broad coalition of environmental groups & scientists sought Thursday to draw attention to what they call the dire condition of the world's largest freshwater ecosystem. A report from the Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition says the Lakes are deteriorating at a rate unprecedented in recorded history and their ecosystem is in danger of collapse. The Bush administration's plan for restoring the Great Lakes is expected to be released Monday and expected include $5 billion for cleanup over a 10-year period. The amount represents a continuation of funding at current levels rather than the $20 billion for Great Lakes Restoration originally proposed.
Read the report (24k PDF) from restorethelakes.org
Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition web site
Past articles on this subject from Absolute Michigan

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# posted by farlane @ 9:12 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Michigan Fallout from Auto Industry Struggles

The Detroit Free Press notes that when giants stumble, it is easy to focus on the spectacle and miss what's happening on the ground. Using interviews, they take a really excellent look at how fallout from the auto industry's woes is being manifested in the lives of regular people in Michigan.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:11 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Recipe for Success: Something to Do and the Ability to Find It

The Battle Creek Enquirer reports that a $100,000 study evaluating tourism in Calhoun County has produced a preliminary plan to increase the area's tourism revenue. The plan includes improving the county's wayfinding signs, enhancing downtown Battle Creek's natural beauty, developing a primary attraction to lure tourists and kiosks cross-promoting Albion, Battle Creek and Marshall.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:07 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Detroit Jazz Festival Gets $10 Million Endowment

Crain's Detroit Business reports that the future of the Detroit International Jazz Festival was secured Thursday with a $10 million endowment from Gretchen Valade, chairwoman of Dearborn-based clothing manufacturer Carhartt Inc. and CEO and owner of Harper Woods-based Mack Avenue Records, a jazz label. The 2006 festival will take place in downtown Detroit on Labor Day weekend, Sept. 1-4, 2006.
Detroit International Jazz Festival web site
Mack Avenue Records web site

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# posted by farlane @ 9:06 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Michigan Snowshoe Primer

The Northern Express's Rick Coates has a comprehensive feature on snowshoeing. The article looks at old style, wooden Michigan snowshoes and lightweight, heavy-duty aluminum frame styles, some events and races this winter and some resources for snowshoe information.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:04 AM 0 comments links to this post
 
Thursday, December 08, 2005

Bombs over Bagley by dETROIT fUNK

dETROIT fUNK writes: Over on Bagley the United Artists Building edges closer to its demolition. The infamous UA window artist apparently left a final message about his work.

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# posted by Tami @ 9:54 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Lost bloggers by The Chocolate Runner's Blog

The Chocolate Runner writes: Sometimes while I am surfing the web, I come across blogs that just kinda stop abruptly. It might be the first entry or they may be making regular entries, but for some reason they stop and never start again. No indication why. Do they just get bored? Too busy? Did they die?

I wonder the same thing!

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# posted by Tami @ 9:53 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

(untitled) by The Adventures of a Brit Abroad

Brit Abroad writes: My goodness, the talk actually went rather well. People came! They asked questions! They hung around for ages afterwards wanting to talk to me! All rather surprising, really.

He is referring to his "fascinating talk on pinhole photography tonight at the Whittaker branch of the Ypsilanti Library." per fellow blogger ypsi~dixit

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# posted by Tami @ 9:52 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

BBC NEWS | Technology | Wordsmiths hail podcast success by The Content Manager

The Content Manager writes: "The term 'podcast' has been declared Word of the Year by the New Oxford American Dictionary..."

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# posted by Tami @ 9:51 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Five Things You Need to Know for Thursday, December 8, 2005

 

Granholm Says Massive Fed Cuts Could Impact Business Taxes

The Detroit Free Press reports that Gov. Granholm said yesterday that all bets are off for cutting Michigan business taxes further if Congress slashes an estimated $1 billion in aid over five years to Michigan for Medicaid and other programs that help needy families, students and farmers. Republicans say federal aid cuts shouldn't stop Michigan from pursuing tax cuts that would boost our economy.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:42 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Bay City Judge Blocks Au Sable Drilling Preparation

The Detroit Free Press reports that U.S. District Court Judge David Lawson issued an order blocking plans by Savoy Energy to start road and site work in the Huron-Manistee National Forest east of Grayling. The site is adjacent to the 5,300-acre Mason Tract wilderness preserve and the South Branch fishery of the AuSable River (considered one of Michigan's finest).

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# posted by farlane @ 9:41 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Michigan to Unveil Cultural Marketing Effort

The Detroit Free Press reports that Bill Anderson, director of the Michigan Department of History, Arts and Libraries, will unveil the Cultural Economic Development Strategy for Michigan. The plan will create a more accurate measure of the money, jobs and taxes brought to the state from arts and culture and also encourage communities to promote cultural tourism and provides training on how to turn historical buildings into living and working spaces for artists.

Also see Cool Cities event looks to culture to boost economies in the Lansing State Journal
More about the Cultural Economic Development Strategy for Michigan

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# posted by farlane @ 9:40 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Michigan to Unveil Cultural Marketing Effort

The Detroit Free Press reports that Bill Anderson, director of the Michigan Department of History, Arts and Libraries, will unveil the Cultural Economic Development Strategy for Michigan. The plan will create a more accurate measure of the money, jobs and taxes brought to the state from arts and culture and also encourage communities to promote cultural tourism and provides training on how to turn historical buildings into living and working spaces for artists.

Also see Cool Cities event looks to culture to boost economies in the Lansing State Journal
More about the Cultural Economic Development Strategy for Michigan

Read More (external link) »

# posted by farlane @ 9:39 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

House Approves Bill Limiting Passengers for Young Drivers

mLive reports that first-year drivers would need permission from their parents to have more than one person in their vehicle under age 18 other than immediate family members under legislation approved Wednesday by the state House. Young drivers represent about 7% of the driving population in Michigan but constitute more than 14.2% of those involved in fatal crashes.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:39 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

10 Michigan Books

The Detroit Free Press has a great list of 10 Michigan-centric books that includes The Lake, the River and the Other Lake by Steve Amick (funny story about a fictional town on Lake Michigan, its natives and summer visitors) and Please Don't Come Back From the Moon by Dean Bakopoulos (young men abandoned by their fathers in a working-class Ukrainian community in a Detroit suburb).

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# posted by farlane @ 9:38 AM 0 comments links to this post
 
Wednesday, December 07, 2005

"Sinterklaas kapoentje, gooi wat in mijn schoentje..." by ypsi~dixit

ypsi~dixit writes: HAPPY SINTERKLAAS. Did you put your shoe, and a carrot or some hay, by the fireplace last night? Did St. Nicholas ride over your roof on his big white horse, accompanied by the Zwarte Pieten? Did he leave you your chocolate letter, or some gelt, or marzipan?

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# posted by Tami @ 9:49 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Death By Caffeine by Elephant in my Coffee

Elephant in my Coffee writes: What a way to go (if you want to be wide awake when you die).

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# posted by Tami @ 9:48 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Grandfather. Democrat. Union Man. Sore Loser. by christinebarry.com

christinebarry.com writes: The man awoke suddenly from an unusually sound sleep. From his downtown apartment he could hear that the bitterly cold streets of Flint had come alive with celebration. He scrambled out of bed, pulled on a pair of trousers and a coat, and ran out of his home into the early morning air.

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# posted by Tami @ 9:46 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Welcome Home by NOISE PhotoBlog

NOISE PhotoBlog writes: Hundreds of friends and relatives turned out to welcome home the 149 members of the Michigan Army National Guard 1st Battalion, 119th Field Artillery, at the Marshall Street Armory.

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# posted by Tami @ 9:45 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

The sky is falling by PC Mike's E-Journal

PC Mike writes: There's a new threat to worry about. It's called Apophis. It's 390m wide. And it could hit Earth in 31 years time.

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# posted by Tami @ 9:43 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Five Things You Need to Know for Wednesday, December 7, 2005

 

Ford Expected to Agree to Deep Cuts

The Detroit News reports that Ford Motor Co. executives will present a restructuring plan to the company's board of directors today that calls for closing at least 10 assembly and component plants and eliminating 25,000 to 30,000 hourly jobs in North America within five years, according to people familiar with the plan.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:41 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Lansing City Council Looks to Rejuvinate Downtown

The Lansing State Journal reports that the Lansing City Council is expected to approve a $13 million housing/retail project to help rejuvenate the city's downtown. Stadium District would include 58 condominiums and apartments as well as retail and office space in what is now a parking lot across from Oldsmobile Park (home of the Lansing Lugnuts). Some in the community are critical of the proposal, especially because it would give a 50% tax break for 12 years to condo buyers.

Also see Lansing: New View, Long Overdue, Development and Construction from UrbanPlanet.org (great photos & renderings!)

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# posted by farlane @ 9:39 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Michigan Veterans Recall Pearl Harbor

Michigan History Magazine takes a look back at December 7, 1941 with photos and the memories of many Michiganders. The Detroit Free Press also talks with Walter Drenkhahn Jr. There will be a memorial program in Pontiac today to remember the 32 Michigan servicemen killed at Pearl Harbor.

Also see Pearl Harbor was enough war for a Michigan farmer in the Freep

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# posted by farlane @ 9:38 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Zoo Management to be Turned Over to Society, Museums May Take Similar Path

Crain's Detroit Business reports that under a plan in negotiation between the Detroit Zoological Society and the city of Detroit, the society would take over management and financial responsibility of the Royal Oak-based Detroit Zoo. A similar plan is being considered for the Detroit Historical Museums.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:38 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Michigan's Role in Narnia

The Detroit Free Press has a feature on a Michigan man and woman who helped shape the story of Narnia. They are Sharon Bordine Frisco of Rochester whose short films helped to preserve the legacy of author C.S. Lewis and Washtenaw Community College computer instructor Laurence Krieg, who became a pen pal of Lewis and suggested using the Narnian chronological order for ording the books.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:37 AM 0 comments links to this post
 
Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Pile of vintage toys rakes in cash on eBay by PC Mike's E-Journal

PC Mike writes:...more proof that eBay is the way to sell anythng and that there are people waiting to pay a fortune for the stuff gathering dust in the basement

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# posted by Tami @ 10:13 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

STUMPED by ypsi~dixit

ypsi~dixit writes: STUMPED on what to whip up for the office holiday potluck?

Y, I am shocked!

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# posted by Tami @ 10:11 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Rasheed Wallace wants your coat by Detroit Bad Boys

Detroit Bad Boys writes: "With so many people out there without winter necessities, it is important to help give them something to keep warm," said Wallace, who expects Detroiters to contribute heavily to the less fortunate. "I'm reaching out once again to the community for support to collect as many coats as possible."

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# posted by Tami @ 10:08 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

The Height of Silliness by Ann Arbor is Overrated

Ann Arbor is Overrated writes: A resident of the Old West Side speaking during the public commentary portion of tonight's city council meeting argued against tall buildings downtown near her neighborhood on the basis that "a 10-story building would feel like a 12- to 15-story building."

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# posted by Tami @ 10:05 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

No Hands Fishing by Find the River

Find the River writes: God forbid I ever become paralyzed, but if it happens, all is not lost.

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# posted by Tami @ 10:01 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Five Things You Need to Know for Tuesday, December 6, 2005

 

Deals for Michigan Skiers

The Detroit Free Press has a look at several Michigan ski deals including the "White Gold Card" (a $169 card that lets you ski one time free at 24 ski resorts in Michigan) and deals for beginning skiers, seniors and Michigan fourth-graders. Also included are a couple of other articles reporting that our ski season has gotten a great start with heavy late-November and early December snowfall.

Also see SNOW SKI SPECIAL SECTION: Traffic on the slopes heating up in the Freep
Read Skiers happy with early season in the Mining Journal
Michigan Snowsports Industries Association web site

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# posted by farlane @ 9:57 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Water Conservation Paying Off (Part I)

AP writer John Flesher has completed a 3 part feature exploring how fear of losing water to outsiders is leading some companies, municipalities and individuals in our region are pursuing water-saving technology and methods. The features also point out how conservation is saving these folks money.

Read Great Lakes: Cities fighting upstream battles in the Record-Eagle Part II
Read Great Lakes: Residents find ways to conserve in the Record-Eagle Part III

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# posted by farlane @ 9:52 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Outsourcers Provide Small Businesses Global Labor

The Detroit News takes a look at a new breed of niche outsourcers who help small and midsize companies in Michigan gain access to cheap labor as far away as India and China. Analysts contend that while outsourcing may cause the loss of some low-wage jobs here, it also allows companies to keep costs in line, and (hopefully) to protect other jobs. Some of these new companies are targetting physicians and law firms, businesses not typically thought of as outsourcing targets.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:51 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Port Huron Community Renovation Enjoys Success

The Port Huron Times-Herald reports that a renaissance plan for Port Huron's south side is doing well. A group of community partners banded together to offer grants for home renovations and to convert rental properties to single-family homes. 25 homes have undergone extensive improvements, 18 have been converted to single-family homes and 13 new homes have been built.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:50 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Preschool Study Released

mLive reports that a study in Michigan and four other states released yesterday finds that publicly funded preschool programs that have well-paid, college-educated teachers improve children's language development and math skills. The research also indicated that preschool makes a difference in topics like reading and math readiness that affect children's later school achievement.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:50 AM 0 comments links to this post
 
Monday, December 05, 2005

The Saviour has Come - by Dusty Hughes by Grand Rapids Podcasts

'tis the reason for the season!

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# posted by Tami @ 9:46 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Chocolate Math by The Chocolate Runner

The Chocolate Runner writes: This is not one of those waste of time things, it's fun.

Works for me!

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# posted by Tami @ 9:45 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Ed by The Snowsuit Effort

Snowsuit Effort writes: "I collect empty cans because people are throwing away money."

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# posted by Tami @ 9:44 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

TEN THREATS: SAVING AN ANCIENT FISH by GLRC

GLRC writes: One of the threats experts identified is disappearing native species.

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# posted by Tami @ 9:43 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Kilroy was here by :neadfiles

neadfiles writes: Mason does his best impersonation of "Kilroy was here."

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# posted by Tami @ 9:42 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Five Things You Need to Know for Monday, December 5, 2005

 

Exploring the College Divide

The Detroit News reports that complicated aid applications, fears of tuition debt, expenses for books, housing and food are among the many barriers that experts say are causing needy families to turn away from higher education. Michigan's 15 publicly funded universities saw overall enrollment grow over the past decade, but saw the proportion of Pell Grant students on most campuses shrink. Even students who score zero on the Free Application for Student Financial Aid, earning them maximum financial aid, and the best rates on subsidized loans, come up short of being able to pay all the bills without working long hours after school or taking on more loans from higher interest private lenders. It's not just Pell-level families that are feeling the pinch: families in the 50,000 income range are having a hard time as they are above the Pell Grant level (which triggers many other aid packages) but below an income necessary to cover the cost of college. At the same time, there are reports on universities using merit awards to sweeten the financial aid packages of academic achievers (many who come from wealthier families).

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# posted by farlane @ 9:39 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Michigan Sugar Beets Cut the Ice

The Lansing State Journal reports that Meridian township and the Ingham County Road Commission will use a de-icing coating made from Michigan sugar beets. Known as DE-ICE 55, the product uses sugar beets and brine from Michigan brine wells to make a sticky, liquid slush that gets sprayed onto piles of road salt once each season.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:39 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Michigan Legislature Moves to Overhaul Welfare

State lawmakers have voted to limit cash assistance for able-bodied welfare recipients to four years, to implement penalties for those who fail to comply with work or training requirements and provisions are aimed at helping move people into long-term employment. If Gov. Granholm signs, it would be the most significant change to Michigan's welfare program since Engler overhaul in the 90s.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:38 AM 0 comments links to this post
 

Federal Budget Cuts Could Have Serious Consequences for Michigan

The Detroit News reports that Congress' plan to cut up to $50 billion from federal programs threatens tens of thousands of Michigan families who receive Medicaid, food stamps and help in collecting child support. The cuts could mean up to $1 billion less headed to Michigan over the next five years and force some difficult choices for state leaders

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# posted by farlane @ 9:37 AM 1 comments links to this post
 

UP Snowmobile Season Kicks off with a Bang

The Mining Journal reported that snowmobile season opened last Thursday on designated state trails to over a foot of snow on many trails. This weekend, up to two feet additional snow fell on the Keweenaw Peninsula and Alger County.

Also see Lake-effect blasts hit Alger, Keweenaw; Snow piles up in the Mining Journal

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# posted by farlane @ 9:37 AM 0 comments links to this post
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