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Thursday, May 04, 2006

Thursday, May 4, 2006: Five Things You Need to Know

Michigan in Pictures takes you to Tulip Time in Holland, Michigan. Jack Lessenberry says build a wall around Detroit (he also rails against "those swarthy types that don't speak our language and don't have good American names like Szymanski.") The Detroit News says Michigan must end addiction to tobacco cash.

A Wakeup Call from ... Lyndon LaRouche??
Lyndon LaRouche is a name held in scant regard by many who know it (myself included). I was thus very surprised to find this remarkably cogent document that begins:
The purpose of the following communication is to prompt the immediate crafting of urgently needed emergency Federal legislation: Legislation to prevent the threatened immediate collapse of the U.S. national automobile industry from becoming the beginning of a virtually irreversible chain-reaction of destruction of approximately the entirety of the present physical economy of the U.S.A.
LaRouche argues that our agriculture, manufacturing, health-care systems, and other basic economic infrastructure are being allowed to collapse calls for the protection of America's manufacturing base by the creation of a Federal Public Corporation. The coporation would operate factories that are being discarded by the automobile industry in similar manner as the Reconstruction Finance Corporation under President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

Editor's Note: I really thought a long time about linking to this as I have grave problems with a lot of what LaRouche has said in the past. In the end, I decided that the message he sends, and the fact that I agree that we might be in the process of throwing away our industrial capability, outweighs problems I have with the messenger. While nationalizing the cast-off capacity of the auto industry may not be the solution (or feasible), we do need serious consideration of what the auto industry did for the war effort in WWII. Caveat emptor.
Read Emergency Legislation, Now! from the Executive Intelligence Review
Lyndon LaRouche entry in Wikipedia

Group Seeks Fourfold Increase in Michigan Tourism Promotion

This week's Crain's Detroit reports that the Michigan Hotel, Motel & Resort Association, the Michigan Chamber of Commerce and the state's three largest destination-marketing organizations have formed a coalition to boost Michigan's annual promotional spending from $5.7 million to $30 million. Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau executive vice president Michael O'Callaghan says "Right now in spite of the fact that we are the Great Lakes state, our hotel occupancy is ranked 50th. We really haven't gotten the message out to the region or the rest of the country that this is a great state to visit."

More money for tourism is expected to be a tough sell as funding was just increased. Ari Adler, press secretary to Senate Majority Leader Ken Sikkema said "Some may see them as looking at a second bite of the apple, when some people haven't been let in the orchard yet."
Read Groups push hike in tourism spending from Crain's Detroit Business

Michigan Businesses Stronger than Percieved
Today's Detroit News has an article by David Sowerby (classed as opinion) making the case that despite the Single Business Tax (which the News is not a fan of), Michigan is competitive or at least at the median for the majority of our other major taxes like personal income, sales and property taxes. Despite the heavy hits to the auto industry, corporate profits for Michigan's 80 publicly traded companies are estimated to increase approximately 12% in 2006, exceeding forecasted profit gains of the S&P 500 in 2006. According to preliminary estimates for the fourth quarter of 2005, combined job and personal income growth for Michigan was 5% (7% nationally). A year ago, Michigan was more than 6% below the national average.
Read State's business strengths outweigh its weaknesses in the Detroit News

Michigan Businesses to Watch

West Michigan's 101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For were announced yesterday. The awards recognize companies for strategies they use to create the best human resource initiatives for their employees. The "Best of the Best" award was presented to Deloitte & Touche USA LLP of Grand Rapids.

Also announced were the Michigan 50 Companies to Watch, recognizing companies that employ 6-99 employees, generate $750,000 to $50 million in annual revenue and are privately held and headquartered in Michigan. (check the link below for profiles of all 50)
Read http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/060503/dew006.html?.v=43 from the PR Newswire
Profiles of the 2006 "50 Companies to Watch in Michigan"

Pistons Defeat Bucks in 5
Chauncey runs the show, Rip goes for 40 pts in 3 quarters, Big Ben gets back on track, Rasheed stays loose and Tayshaun Prince hits from waaaay downtown. Detroit's 122-93 series-ending whooping of Bucks means venison jerky for everyone, a healthy dose of confetti and that the Detroit Pistons remain the best show in town.

# posted by farlane @ 10:55 AM
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