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Saturday, March 18, 2006

GM & UAW Near Delphi Solution

The Detroit Free Press reports:
General Motors Corp., Delphi Corp. and the UAW are close to an agreement on a massive job-cutting plan to offer retirement packages to thousands of blue-collar workers, people familiar with the talks said Friday ...

The deal would accelerate GM's efforts to cut 30,000 jobs across North America by the end of 2008, including 25,000 in the United States.

Read GM, UAW on edge of Delphi solution in the Freep

# posted by farlane @ 9:27 AM 0 comments links to this post
Friday, March 17, 2006

Falling: Tiger Stadium & Trees, Rising: Inventors & Detroit

Last weekend, Michigan in Pictures took in a little baseball, Pewabic Pottery in Detroit turned 103 and President Bush affirmed he understood Michigan's trade concerns.

Down notes for the week included news that the Michigan budget could see a major hit from decreased tobacco payments (though we can take comfort that less people smoking will probably reduce our health care bill), word that this might be the end for Tiger Stadium, and announcement that a bill before the Senate could adversely impact Michigan's forests.

There was more silver lining than cloud, however, with good news like a nearly $300 million boost to Detroit's economy by Super Bowl XL, a study that found Michigan's economy can support a biodiesel plant, and the Freep and MAKE Magazine shone a light on Michigan's Inventors.

Michigan History Magazine looked back on Madame Cadillac's arrival in Detroit and the Michigan Walk of Fame picked the first 12 Michiganians to be set in concrete. Meanwhile, Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick looked ahead to "Next Detroit" in his State of the City address.

Looking for fun stuff to do? Get off the couch with the MSU Fringe Festival (Mar 19) or get your Irish on in Bay City, Lansing and Muskegon.

Have a great weekend.

And do yourself a favor and click on the beautiful photo from Sarah Steffens.

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# posted by farlane @ 4:12 PM 0 comments links to this post

Tough town, tough dogs

We don't want no stinking sissy dogs
You think Detroiters have a tough attitude? You should see what's in our backyard doghouses.
Nationwide, the friendly Labrador retriever is top dog. Not here.
Also see The 96th and 97th annual Detroit Kennel Club Dog Shows, March 18th & 19th on Absolute Michigan's Off the Couch, Michigan Entertainment, Events & Festivals

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# posted by William Stevens @ 12:45 PM 0 comments links to this post

Five Things You Need to Know for Friday, March 17, 2006


Bill Could Have Grave Implications for Michigan's State Forests

The Public Interest Research Group in Michigan, a lobbying group, has an interesting article urging (at least) a look at House Bill 5453, a bill passed by the State House and headed for the Senate. The bill would require the state to put the trees in our state forests up for sale every ten years unless it would be illegal or unsustainable to do so.

In opposition to the bill, PIGRIM stated:
The public has a tremendous interest in our state forests: they give us places to hike, places to hunt, and places to take our kids camping. They are also a vital economic engine, not just because they provide timber to harvest, but also because they serve as the backbone of our twelve billion-dollar tourist economy. PIRGIM opposes HB5453 because it mandates that our state forests be managed in a way that serves the single interest of the timber industry, rather than the multiple interests of the public.
Read Protecting Our Wild Forests from PIRGRIM

Also see PIGRIM'S Testimony before the Senate Agriculture, Forestry, and Tourism Committee on HB5453 (from March 16, 2006)

House Bill 5453 and associated information from Michigan.gov

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# posted by farlane @ 10:20 AM 0 comments links to this post

$8500 Car (and Chinese Car Maker) Coming to US

Chinese automaker Geely Automobile Co. says it plans to start selling an $8,500 sedan - far below the currently cheapest $12k Chevy Aveo - by the fall of 2008 and might locate a small US headquarters in Michigan. Geely (pronounced Jee-lee) would be the first Chinese automaker to import cars for sale in the United States.

Read Watch out Big Three -- the Chinese are coming from mLive

Geely Global web site (I was tempted to mock their English, but it's far better than my Chinese)

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# posted by farlane @ 10:02 AM 1 comments links to this post

Study Concludes Michigan Can Support Biodiesel Plant

The Michigan Department of Agriculture announced the results of a study assessing the state's ability to house a biodiesel plant. The MDA-sponsored report concludes that with an investment of $7-12 million, a stand-alone, five to ten million-gallon biodiesel plant could be built in one of several locations, including Bangor, Zeeland, Gratiot County and several other sites. "Today's results are further confirmation that our efforts to make Michigan a hub for cleaner burning fuels, as well as a leader in alternative energy and bio-technology, are on target," said MDA Director Mitch Irwin.

"We're looking forward to having some in-state production. Last year 3 million gallons of biodiesel were brought into Michigan from other states, so some in-state production is needed to help fulfill Michigan's growing demand for biodiesel and to help both the economy and Michigan's soybean farmers," said Gail R. Frahm, Michigan Soybean Promotion Committee Executive Director and one of the investors in the feasibility study. "With users such as schools, MDOT, the postal service, state and national parks, city fleets, farmers, and MANY others, biodiesel is here to stay and we hope to help continue to grow the demand."

Read National Study Says Biodiesel Plant Feasible in Michigan from Michigan.gov

Also see Biodiesel Feasibility Study Executive Summary (576k Adobe PDF)

Read More (external link) »

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

Live Podcasts of Michigan Sports Championships (and NCAA Video, Because it's Friday)

The Michigan High School Athletic Association has launched the MHSAA Internet Broadcast Network. The network features LIVE podcasts of state tournament volleyball and basketball games, archived broadcasts of state hockey and even a couple historic broadcasts like the 1959 Lansing Sexton vs. Hamtramck Class A Boys Basketball Final.

MHSAA Internet Broadcast Network

March Madness on Demand from NCAA - FREE Live & Archived videos (doing our part to destroy productivity)

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# posted by farlane @ 9:58 AM 0 comments links to this post

Congressional Ethics Reform Stalling?

Michigan members of Congress took more than $200,000 in private trips - permitted by Congressional ethics rules as long as they have a work-related purpose. Jack Lessenberry interviews Craig Holman of Public Citizen's Congress Watch "Craig, what do you think about lawmakers accepting free trips from interest groups?" Holman says that as the public is losing interest, reform is losing steam.

Read/Listen to Interview: Craig Holman from Michigan Radio

Also see Essay: Feeling Perky from Jack's Blog

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# posted by farlane @ 9:56 AM 0 comments links to this post
Thursday, March 16, 2006


Patricia Montemurri of the Detroit Free Press reports on a unique ongoing art project that recreates masterpieces as murals in Plymouth-Canton high schools. I seem to remember at best a badly painted mascot on my high school's walls along with the ever present student graffiti.

On the walls of Salem High School, students can lose themselves in the lush jungles of Henri Rousseau, the mesmerizing blooms of Georgia O'Keeffe or the bounty of Diego Rivera's flower peddlers.

The masterpieces -- re-created by students over 20 years as part of a senior humanities class -- number about 100 and are in all three high schools operated by the Plymouth-Canton school district at its Plymouth-Canton Educational Park off Joy and Canton Center roads.

Read More (external link) »

# posted by William Stevens @ 10:28 AM 0 comments links to this post

Girls HS Sports Court Case - an Interview by Jack Lessenberry's Essays and Interviews

Jack Lessenberry writes: Yesterday a federal appeals court panel in Cincinnati heard oral arguments in a case that has dragged on for years. At issue is whether girls get to play their sports at the same time of year that boys do. The Grand Rapids-based group Communities for Equity first sued the Michigan High School Athletic Association over this issue in 1998. Michigan Radio's Jack Lessenberry spoke with Ann Arbor attorney Jean Ledwith King about this case and the work she's been doing for the last 35 years to make sure girls get a chance to play.

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

Draw a Pig by neadfiles

neadfiles writes: This is a nice diversion. Go to http://drawapig.desktopcreatures.com/ and use your mouse to draw your pig on a "whiteboard". Then answer several questions about your final work of art and get some insightful answers about your personality. Your picture gets added to the "gallery" and a link is generated so you can share it with your friends.

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

Mod Podge and paint and... [photo] by The Adventures of a Brit Abroad

Matt writes: All analogue baby.

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

Swedish Moon Colony by From the Earth to the Moon

From the Earth to the Moon writes: [as reported in The Speculist] "Sure, it sounds like a cheesy skin flick from the 70's, but they're serious..."

You can read the article in its entirety at PhysOrg.com

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

Test your Pistons knowledge by Detroit Bad Boys

Detroit Bad Boys writes: Be sure to check out The Great Pistons Quiz in today's Free Press. Don't let the first couple of questions ("match the nickname to the player" type stuff) fool you - it gets pretty tough. Both Ian and I scored 37 out of 47 - can anyone beat that? Post your score in the comments.

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

Five Things You Need to Know for Thursday, March 16, 2006


The Walking Project (requires RealAudio)

For several days we've been sitting on this fascinating story by Michigan Radio's Jennifer Guerra on The Walking Project. According to their site:
"The Walking Project is a performance, mapping and cultural exchange project collaboratively developed with US and South Africa-based artists during a series of residencies in Detroit and KwaZulu-Natal from 2003 through 2006.
The project explores 'desire lines' or paths made by people who walk across fields in South Africa and across vacant lots in Detroit - and what connects them."

The Walking Project blog
Also see The Walking Project: Desire Lines, Walking and Mapping Across Continents from Community Arts Network

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# posted by farlane @ 9:26 AM 0 comments links to this post

Spotlight on Michigan Inventors

American Inventor debuts tonight on ABC (link), so Heather Newman of the Detroit Free Press is taking a look at four Michigan inventors featured in the new book "Makers: All Kinds of People Making Amazing Things in Garages, Basements and Backyards" by Bob Parks of MAKE Magazine (book information & ordering). Profiled in the book are:

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# posted by farlane @ 9:24 AM 0 comments links to this post

Super Bowl XL Earnings & Spending Announced

The Detroit News reports that according to the just-completed study by a St. Louis research firm for the Metro Detroit Convention and Visitors Bureau, hosting Super Bowl XL provided a $273.9-million economic boost to the Detroit area. While that number is on the lower side, it was a huge boost for the normally empty February for Detroit. The biggest beneficiaries of Super Bowl spending were the region's hotels, the casinos and other entertainment spots, and food and drink providers. who nabbed 54% of the $170 million in direct spending by out-of-town visitors.

Crain's Detroit Business reports that the Super Bowl XL Host Committee announced its emerging-business program generated $10.1 million in spending through 300 contracts - the most in the program's history with the National Football League. In addition, the host committee report said that more than $2 million is expected to be donated to nonprofits in the tri-county area from sanctioned charity events.

Read Super Bowl emerging-business program total: $10.1 million in spending in the Crain's Detroit Business
Information about the Emerging Business Program from the NFL

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# posted by farlane @ 9:23 AM 0 comments links to this post

Detroit Radio Vet Named Michigan Public Media Director

The Detroit News reports that veteran Detroit radio executive Steve Schram has been named interim director of Michigan Public Media at the University of Michigan. Schram has held the two top radio jobs in Detroit. rom 1996-2002, he was vice president and general manager for Clear Channel's seven Detroit-area radio stations and from 2003-2005, he was senior vice president and director of sales for Infinity (CBS) Broadcasting's six-station Detroit cluster. Currently Schram heads up his own company doing media consulting and is also a co-founder of Keener13.com.

Michigan Public Media letter of March 15, 2006
Keener13.com web site

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# posted by farlane @ 9:22 AM 0 comments links to this post

UM Student Wins Tuba Seat with Philly Orchestra

MSNBC reports that 21-year-old University of Michigan senior Carol Jantsch is the first woman (and perhaps the youngest person ever) to earn a tuba seat with a top-five U.S. symphony. She will join the Philadelphia Orchestra in December.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:21 AM 0 comments links to this post
Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Saunderson gives local promoter techno blessing

Detroit techno pioneer Kevin Saunderson has endorsed Jason Huvaere, director of operations for Ferndale-based electronic music event promoters Paxahau, to produce this year's Memorial Day techno fest. Huvaere has been in discussions with city officials trying to work out logistics of putting together a festival on Hart Plaza May 27-29. Detroit city officials say they are talking to several groups and expect to make a decision on who will helm this year's event as early as this week.

Wikipedia has a complete rundown on the evolution and history of the festival here.

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# posted by William Stevens @ 11:28 AM 0 comments links to this post

McAfee Virus update causes major screwups by PC Mike's E-Journal

PC Mike writes: Man, heads will likely roll over this.

An update sent Friday by the anti-virus software company McAfee mistakenly caused hundreds of legitimate files to be erroneously labeled malware and be rendered inoperative. It took the company five hours to catch the screwup, during which customers all over the world started to encounter major problems. For many users, the Microsoft Excel program wouldn't even open as a result of the messup.

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

Need4Sheed's Natalie on Quite Frankly w/ Stephen A. Smith

Natalie writes: I just received the best email ever and I would like to share it with you.

".....The reason I am contacting you is that we just found out that current NBA star and stand-out power forward Rasheed Wallace, is scheduled to appear LIVE in the studio of ESPN's - Quite Frankly with Stephen A. Smith on Thursday, March 16 at 3:00 pm. with.html

We would like to extend to you and your website FREE tickets to attend the show. We realize that this maybe short notice, but it would be a great opportunity for some of your forum members to get together and meet up for an exciting sports show. The tickets are open to you and your interested members, family members, friends, and co-workers.

Congrats Natalie!

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

Women's History Month by Red Tape Blog

Jon writes: The Library of Congress Wise Guide: Women's History is currently profiling "American women pioneers," as well as posters, photographs and prints, and books and pamphlets covering the suffrage movement. The Wise Guide portal changes subjects monthly, featuring different areas of interest in the Library.

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

Frivolous Lawsuits by Rougblog

Rougman writes: The U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform is circulating an internet petition to put an end to frivolous lawsuits.

Some of the suits they are questioning:

Woman walking track sues railroad

Injured Kmart Shopper
[my personal favorite]

A woman sues Lowes Garden Center, claiming she was attacked by bird

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# posted by Tami @ 9:47 AM 0 comments links to this post

Ghetto Sandwich by dETROITfUNK

dFUNK writes: [about one of his photos] Ghetto sandwich and a beer - mmmmmmm...Ghetto flavored!

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

Five Things You Need to Know for Wednesday, March 15, 2006


Inagural Inductees for Michigan Walk of Fame Announced (includes brief bios of the inductees)

The Lansing Principal Shopping District and the Michigan Historical Museum announced the names of the 12 inaugural inductees to the Michigan Walk of Fame yesterday. The 2006 inductees are Jeff Daniels, Herbert Henry Dow, Thomas Edison, President Gerald Ford, Henry Ford, E. Genevieve Gillette, Ernie Harwell, W.K. Kellogg, Rosa Parks, Fannie Richards, Helen Thomas and Stevie Wonder. These Michiganians were selected from 450 nominees submitted by residents of all 83 Michigan counties throughout fall 2005 and will be inducted into the Michigan Walk of Fame at a tribute celebration at the Michigan Historical Center on Thursday, May 25. Each inductee will also be honored with a bronze plaque embedded in the sidewalks of downtown Lansing featuring a star containing the inductee's name and a description of his or her achievements.

"The Michigan Walk of Fame was created to honor state residents, past and present who have made significant contributions to the state, nation or the world," said Kevin Green, executive director of Lansing Principal Shopping District. "The Michigan Walk of Fame is the nation's first statewide 'walk' honoring citizen achievements."

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

Forum Seeks Path to Better Future for Michigan

The Detroit Free Press has a report on yesterday's "Where Do We Go From Here?" conference. Recommendations included developing a blue-ribbon advisory commission to tackle specific economic problems, a comprehensive review of tax and spending policies, a major effort in civic education so the state's citizens can weigh the advantages and disadvantages of public policy and evaluate options and make educated decisions, lifelong learning programs to help Michigan's workers cope with a changing marketplace and reform of the Single Business Tax.

In a related article, Free Press columnist Tom Walsh lays out a compelling case challenging classic assumptions about Michigan including feelings that our wages (nearly average) and tax rates (29th among the 50 states) are too high and that our schools are not producing quality students.

Also see TOM WALSH: Think tax, wage cuts can fix state woes? Think again in the Freep
Add your comment to "How to fix Michigan's economy?" at the Freep
Read papers presented at the conference from The Center for Michigan

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

Kilpatrick Uses State of Detroit Address to Tout "Next Detroit"

The Detroit papers have reports on yesterday's State of the City address by Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick who declared boldly, "We are in a position where we either transform or die - Detroit, we're not dying on my watch." He attacked absenteeism among city workers and also set the stage for a war on rising benefits. He also introduced his "Next Detroit" vision which include ...

Read STATE OF THE CITY: Tough times will create 'Next Detroit' in the Freep
Read Mayor slams absentee workers in the Detroit News
NextDetroit.org - hey look, something's there

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

Preserve America Grant to Develop Shoreline Heritage Route

The Muskegon Chronicle reports that an $80,000 federal Preserve America grant to Michigan's State Historic Preservation Office will help develop a 170-mile historic route along the Lake Michigan shoreline from the Indiana state line to Ludington. One of the first activities will be a survey of historically significant attractions and features in each community. State officials will look for sites related to exploration and settlement, maritime heritage, lumbering, architecture, agriculture and ethnic heritage. Targetted communities include Grand Haven, Muskegon, Whitehall, Montague, Pentwater and Ludington and the state preservation office will help each community to develop a heritage tourism strategy to jointly market the region as a place of significant historic attractions.

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

Auto Healthcare: The Plans They Are a-Changin'

The Detroit News reports that Ford Motor Co. is rolling out a series of cutbacks to health care benefits for its salaried work force, including an unconventional move to charge extra to cover spouses who have access to other health care insurance. DaimlerChrysler is expected to detail changes to its health care coverage today for salaried workers and retirees today.

Also see Whee! It's The Health Care See-Saw! at Jalopnik

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# posted by farlane @ 9:37 AM 0 comments links to this post
Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Web 2.0 getting traction by PC Mike's E-Journal

Mike Wendland writes: Have you noticed all the stories lately about Web 2.0? Google just bought a Web 2.0 company that makes what could be the precursor to an online word processor that could someday rival, say, Microsoft's Word.

Trying to define just what Web 2.0 is lacks universal agreement, though generally, as this Wikipedia definition explains, it deals with interactive mini applications that can be used collaboratively, say like blogs, bookmark managers, wikis and shared online calendars. Some Web 2.0 apps also feature syndication.

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# posted by Tami @ 9:36 AM 0 comments links to this post

Giving Gifts for Good by Detroit Essentials

Detroit Essentials writes: Now I know that the gift-giving season is over, but keep this in mind for the next birthday or holiday that rolls around: MP3 Relief hosts a music downloading site from which 100% of the profits goes to Mercy Corps, an organization that aids in disaster relief.

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# posted by Tami @ 9:29 AM 0 comments links to this post


GLRC writes: Environmental groups say they've reached a landmark deal with auto and steel makers and the EPA that could prevent tons of mercury from getting into the environment in the future.

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# posted by Tami @ 9:28 AM 0 comments links to this post

Don't Expect Fanfare When Yzerman Calls It Quits by Out of Bounds

Out of Bounds writes: There is no farewell tour, but that's by design. He isn't being showered with gifts at every NHL stop, and that too is part of the plan. Nothing, if Steve Yzerman can help it, is going to take away from the focus being on the team, and not himself.

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# posted by Tami @ 9:26 AM 0 comments links to this post

not so fast, DEQ by Dave's Blog

Dave writes: News item:


Nestle Waters North America, which owns the embattled Ice Mountain water bottling plant in the state, has ended both federal and state lawsuits designed to protect its ability to distribute water from the plant.

Water protection legislation enacted last month effectively lifts any limitations on distribution from the plant, company officials said on announcing dismissal of the lawsuits. The law does not consider containers less than 5.7 gallons to be a diversion of water from the Great Lakes Basin.

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# posted by Tami @ 9:25 AM 0 comments links to this post

Five Things You Need to Know for Tuesday, March 14, 2006


Tiger Stadium on the Ropes

Detroit News reports that seven years after a century of baseball ended at Tiger Stadium, money for its upkeep and hopes it can ever be saved are running dry. Since the Tigers moved to Comerica Park in 2000, the city has paid the team's owner, Mike Ilitch, an estimated $2.5 million for maintenance and security at the old park. The city received ideas for use including plan by a St. Louis developer to retool the stadium into lofts and rentals, and a separate proposal to use the space for a sports, residential and office complex featuring condos, stores, a scaled-down baseball diamond and volleyball courts were the best received, but both failed in negotiation with the city. Now it looks as if the park that opened in 1912 and has been known as Navin Field & Briggs Stadium has reached the end of the line.

Tiger Stadium's age and unique shape, crooks and crannies make it impractical to renovate. Peter Comstock Riley, a partner in preservationist group Michigan & Trumbull LLC, alleges that city officials long ago made up their minds to raze the park.

Photos courtesy Library of Congress: Briggs Stadium, Kids at a ball game at Briggs Stadium and Raising the flag at the start of the ball game at Briggs Stadium by John Vachon (1942?, LC-USW3-007071-D, LC-USW3-007089-D , LC-USW3-007093-D)

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# posted by farlane @ 9:20 AM 0 comments links to this post

Interview with Center for Michigan's Phil Power

Michigan Radio's Jack Lessenberry has an interview with Phil Power that we encorage you to check out. Power discusses his "think-and-do tank" called the Center for Michigan and suggests our key problem is the fact that Michigan politics seems more focused on securing political, partisan advantage than in getting the state out of the jam we're in. They meet today, so we should have more tomorrow!

Read Jack's Essay on the Power Center
Read Where Do We Go From Here? from the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy

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# posted by farlane @ 9:19 AM 0 comments links to this post

Craiglist Arrives in Lansing ... How Do You Compete With Free?

The Lansing State Journal reports that Lansing has joined Detroit and Grand Rapids among Michigan cities with forums and free classified advertisements on the San Francisco-based Web site Craigslist (they actually arrived a couple of weeks ago, but who's counting). The company has an estimated annual revenue of $10 million, is partially owned by eBay, has a presence in 190 cities in the US and seems to affect college newspapers most dramatically. According to State News GM Marty Sturgeon, free Web site listings have caused event tickets and used books to disappear from the classified pages. "How do we address this new competition that's there and how do you compete with free?" she said.


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# posted by farlane @ 9:17 AM 0 comments links to this post

Churches Turning to Technology to Deliver Message

The Detroit Free Press has an interesting feature looking at how congregations across Michigan are experimenting with ways to deliver the sights and sounds of their services far beyond their church via podcasting, internet video, toll-free audio feeds and other multimedia efforts.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:16 AM 0 comments links to this post

Pewabic Pottery Turns 103

The Girl in the D blog reported this weekend that Pewabic Pottery, an organization conceived and brought to life in a small stable on John R. in detroit, celebrated its 103rd anniversary on Saturday. She also has a great feature on the history of this Michigan ceramic art education center that welcomes 70,000 visitors annually.

Pewabic Pottery web site
Read Detroit's Pewabic Pottery

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# posted by farlane @ 9:10 AM 0 comments links to this post
Monday, March 13, 2006

What's Opera Doc welcomes Thomas Hampson

WHFR and What's Opera, Doc? will host noted American baritone Thomas Hampson LIVE on the program on Tuesday, March 14th. Hampson is in Detroit for his "Song of America" tour.


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# posted by farlane @ 2:08 PM 0 comments links to this post

Michigan Gets It

Ken Jarboe at the Athena Alliance has an interesting post titled Michigan Gets It that points in turn to a Business Week interview with Michigan's governor. From the interview:

The bottom line for why design is important to the State of Michigan — especially a state that has been challenged by a global economy where we see manufacturing jobs leave — is because future growth will be based more and more on the creative work that goes into making great products, or developing great cities, or even providing great customer service.

Read Michigan Governor Talks Design from Business Week

From the Athena Alliance web site:
Athena Alliance is in the vanguard of identifying, understanding, analyzing, and educating on the information, intangibles, and innovation (I3 or I-Cubed) economy. Information, knowledge and other intangibles now drive economic prosperity and wealth creation. The economic rules have changed; public policy has not caught up. Policy makers are grappling with the urgent need to frame policy questions in light of the changing economic situation. Athena Alliance helps close that gap through activities to reshape the debate and craft new solutions.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:16 AM 0 comments links to this post

Detroit Wonk on Jalopnik

Ray Wertz (chief Wonk at Detroit Wonk) debuts The Jalopnik Morning Shift, a
roundup of auto industry news. One of the tidbits he found is this feature from the Detroit News reporting that car companies are having a hard time finding minority and female designers.

Jalopnik, billed a modern auto review is a great place for all things auto-related.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:00 AM 0 comments links to this post

Five Things You Need to Know for Monday, March 13, 2006


Michigan Budget Could See Major Hit from Smaller Tobacco Payments

MITECHNEWS.COM reports that Michigan could lose $49.3 million of its anticipated $274 million in the Tobacco settlement. Companies involved say they have lost market share and argue that they should be able to drop payments by 18%, a decision that could weigh heavily as the state prepares its 2007 budget, and could impact the plans for the state to invest $2 billion to develop high-tech businesses.

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# posted by farlane @ 8:55 AM 0 comments links to this post

More on Company Buying UP Power Co. Land

The Mining Journal reports that folks in the UP are wondering who Naterra Land is and why they have purchased thousands of acres surrounding hydroelectric basins in the Upper Peninsula. The company is based in Minneapolis and (according to Executive Vice President Steve Roman) has been acquiring similar wooded lakeshore properties in the UP for years and selling then to "...the kind of people who visited here as kids or find their roots here and want to come back to live or vacation in the Upper Peninsula, northern Wisconsin and northern Minnesota." About 7,300 acres has been or is in the process of being sold to Naterra around six UPPCO hydroelectric dam reservoirs in Marquette, Alger, Delta, Ontonagon and Houghton counties.
Also see Under scrutiny; Land deal an open process in the Mining Journal
Naterra Land web site (currently not responding!)

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# posted by farlane @ 8:53 AM 0 comments links to this post

Boom Time in Port Huron

For three years the city of Port Huron has been seeking businesses to redevelop some downtown parking lots. Their efforts paid off last week with an announcement by Port Huron Development LLC of plans for a 500-room hotel, casino and 89,000-square-foot indoor water park. The article looks at how a blend of public and private efforts are revitalizing this Michigan city.

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# posted by farlane @ 8:53 AM 0 comments links to this post

Separating the Great Lakes & Mississippi Watersheds

Earthwatch Radio reports that North America's two biggest watersheds, the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River, are connected to each other by an artificial canal in Chicago. With mounting evidence that invasive plants and animals can spread from one watershed to the other, some are saying it's time for that link to be severed.

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# posted by farlane @ 8:52 AM 0 comments links to this post

Bush Says He Understands Michigan's Trade Concerns, Michigan's Leaders Wonder

Saturday's Detroit News reported that at last Friday's National Newspaper Association Conference, President Bush stated that he fully understands the concerns of Michiganders about the trade arena. The article has the reaction of Michigan politicians including Rep. Joe Knollenberg, a Republican from Oakland County's Bloomfield Township, said in a statement that he was concerned Michigan's economy "is still struggling even though we continue to hear good economic news nationally. Michigan's economic problem is not going to go away on its own -- we have to have action, not just rhetoric."
Also see Smoking rates drop 20 percent following tobacco settlement in the Detroit News

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# posted by farlane @ 8:51 AM 0 comments links to this post
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