For four years, Mr. Obama has benefited at least in part from the reluctance of Mr. Bush’s most virulent critics to criticize a Democratic president. Some liberals acknowledged in recent days that they were willing to accept policies they once would have deplored as long as they were in Mr. Obama’s hands, not Mr. Bush’s.
“We trust the president,” former Gov. Jennifer Granholm of Michigan said on Current TV. “And if this was Bush, I think that we would all be more up in arms because we wouldn’t trust that he would strike in a very targeted way and try to minimize damage rather than contain collateral damage.”
Dear Ms. Granholm, I have a clue for you: You have allowed the precedent to be set, which means everyone in the future who occupies the White House will claim this same power, whether you trust them or not. I personally think you are insane to have some special trust that Obama is minimizing collateral damage, particularly given his Orwellian refusal to acknowledge innocent deaths as innocent. What is he doing, steering the drones himself? But it is more insane to give the government power solely because the person who occupies the White House this micro-second is someone in whom you have particular faith. What happens in the next micro-second? Sorry, doesn't matter, it will be too late.
Though it's a high bar given what has been going on recently, this is the most aggravating thing I have read this week, via Glen Reynolds:
Robert and Patricia Haynes live in Michigan with their two adult children, who have cerebral palsy. The state government provides the family with insurance through Medicaid, but also treats them as caregivers. For the SEIU, this makes them public employees and thus members of the union, which receives $30 out of the family's monthly Medicaid subsidy. The Michigan Quality Community Care Council (MQC3) deducts union dues on behalf of SEIU.
Michigan Department of Community Health Director Olga Dazzo explained the process in to her members of her staff. "MQC3 basically runs the program for SEIU and passes the union dues from the state to the union," she wrote in an emailobtained by the Mackinac Center. Initiated in 2006 under then-Gov. Jennifer Granholm, D-Mich., the plan reportedly provides the SEIU with $6 million annually in union dues deducted from those Medicaid subsidies.
“We're not even home health care workers. We're just parents taking care of our kids,” Robert Haynes, a retired Detroit police officer, told the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. “Our daughter is 34 and our son is 30. They have cerebral palsy. They are basically like 6-month-olds in adult bodies. They need to be fed and they wear diapers. We could sure use that $30 a month that's being sent to the union.”
This is a microcosm of the typical liberal fail -- a group or agency does initial good work (private unions in the early 2oth century, civil rights groups in the 60's and 70's, the EPA in the early 70's) but refuse to go away and declare victory, instead morphing into self-sustaining parasites whose only concern is their own survival.
There has always been a slippery slope to trade protectionism -- if it makes us all richer to draw a line around the United States and prevent more goods from crossing that line one way vs. the other, shouldn't it make us even richer to draw that line even smaller? What about around a state? If the US is better self-sufficient, shouldn't the same thing apply to Missouri? Or St. Louis? Or University City? Or the Delmar Loop? Or just the house on corner of Waterman and Kingsland?
We see this idea in full flower here, from Michigan's Governor Granholm (via my Princeton classmate Henry Payne):
At its conference here last week, the Midwest Governor's Association (MGA) -- chaired by green queen Jennifer Granholm of Michigan -- said it wants to claim the future by transforming the Rust Belt into the Green Belt. But in calling for energy independence from other U.S. states and embracing a 30 percent renewable energy standard by 2030 (up from 2 percent today), the MGA's prescription is a giant leap backwards.Governor Granholm and Gov. James Doyle of Wisconsin seem to be tormented by the fact that the Midwest industrial engine imports much of its energy needs from coal states in the east and west. "Doyle has estimated that $226 billion leaves the region each year in energy costs that could be saved with alternative-energy installations and support jobs here," reported the Detroit Free Press.
My personal view is that Granholm actually hates Michigan. How else to explain why she keeps doing things like raising the minimum wage and keeping taxes high to fund goofy energy schemes in a state with the highest unemployment in the country.
From the grasping at straws file, Michigan governor Jennifer Granholm has been talking for a while about remaking Michigan as an alternative energy powerhouse. Henry Payne reports on her breakfast talk yesterday morning at the DNC Convention:
At a breakfast talk, Michigan's deeply unpopular governor
Jennifer Granholm explained that she was chosen to moderate Tuesday
night's energy panel from the convention stage because of the Wolverine
State's efforts in renewable power. The idea that windmills will rescue
one of America's great manufacturing states is absurd on its face, but
she persisted in spinning a fairy tale that Michigan is perfectly
positioned to take advantage of alternative energy manufacturing
because of the "Five Ws" (I'm not making this up) in abundance in the
state: "Wind, water, waste, workforce and wood."
That's terrific - they have all the key inputs needed for setting up an early 19th century business. What is left unsaid is that Michigan has the highest unemployment rate in the country, driven by fussy and high cost unions and a crushing taxation and regulatory burden. The only message I take from the governor's talk is that if one is not in an alternative energy business, it's time to get out of Michigan, as the majority of businesses are about to face higher power costs and more taxes to support the governor's preferred industrial investment. Which, come to think of it, is a message most businesses have already internalized about Michigan, seeing as the population of its largest city has dropped by more than 50% over the last several decades.
It is highly entertaining to see people who have never even worked in, much less have run, a real business (including Obama, Clinton, and about everyone else on the DNC rostrum) express the hubris that only they know what the right industrial investment plan for the US is and that only they know how to build a major new industry. In particular, we saw last night the repetition of Obama's ridiculous made-up 5 million jobs number that I critiqued in depth several days ago.
Disclosure: I actually run a few campgrounds in the UP of Michigan, but since sleeping in tents seems to fit the governor's industrial policy, I'll probably be OK.