Thursday, February 05, 2009

Six O'Clock News Briefs - Love That Sunshine Edition

At least the sun has been out here in GR today - and the bitter cold looks to subside starting tomorrow. Yea!

  • Speaking of "per projects", someone needs to ask the House Republicans and Mike Cox how listing state spending online to the tune of $100 million qualifies as a priority in these tough times. While a website would be nice to see someday, this is just an obsession from the extreme right that wants to take items out of context and then complain about "waste". You know, like the time when we bought ten pencils for the Alpena SOS office when they only needed five - but not explaining that we got a discount when we bought ten that made it cheaper. Nitpicky stuff like that. Seriously, we have better things to do right now.

  • For the record, the SCHIP bill signed by President Obama yesterday will give an additional 71,000 Michigan kids basic health care. 114,000 kids are already receiving MIChild. Also for the record, three Michigan Congresscritters voted against it: Rogers, Camp and Hoekstra. Make a note of that.

  • President Obama fights back on the Republican attacks to remove the purchase of fuel efficient cars for the government fleet from the stimulus bill. Not only would the $600 million create jobs for auto manufacturers, it would save the government money by taking advantage of "state-of-the-art fuel efficiency". More of this, please:

    "When you hear these attacks deriding something of such obvious importance as this, you have to ask yourself -- are these folks serious? Is it any wonder that we haven't had a real energy policy in this country?" Obama said.

    No doubt.

  • The city of Holland has passed new rules for residential and commercial wind turbines, preparing themselves for the anticipated future interest in home/business power generation. Right now it's a bit pricey to install your own turbine, but costs can and will come down, and cities and townships across Michigan will be ready.

    Holland becomes the first city in Ottawa County to adopt a wind energy ordinance, although several townships -- Zeeland, Chester and Wright -- already have them. Countless other municipalities in both Ottawa and Kent counties are considering or plan to take up proposals regulating wind energy projects in the near future.

    Imagine a world where your home or business generates the power you need, and you can sell back any extra to the power company... who needs coal plants at that point, right?

  • A Michigan company that saw profit rise in the 4th quarter - Kellogg. A 7% increase, despite the recalls on peanut butter products.

  • Swoon! George Clooney will be shooting a movie in Romulus sometime this month. Bet they are lining up already.

  • And finally, Happy Birthday! goes out to Governor Granholm. The Guv "crossed the Rubicon" to the big 5-0 today. She spent the day working the media here in GR on her SotS proposals, the stimulus, and other issues: a live noon appearance on WOOD TV, a taping of "To The Point" which will air this Sunday, a spot for CNBC where she taped an urgent, and I mean the coffee-must-have-kicked-in-urgent plea for the stimulus, and an interview with the GR Press, who presented her with a birthday cake. We are so nice here.

    The nail was hit right on the head yesterday in an interview with the Detroit News. Seems the Michigan Republicans, who ran around with their hair on fire last year about capping the movie tax credits, are now using the industry growth as proof that "tax cuts work", and this somehow justifies their plans to only cut taxes. Without getting into the difference between a "tax cut" and a "tax credit" (because if you could guarantee thousands of jobs and millions of dollars in incoming revenue, I bet MEDC would give you a tax "cut" too), the governor said this:

    Right. Let's see if we can afford cutting the taxes. Will it generate enough growth to compensate for it? Our economists say no. This experiment is giving a refundable tax credit. That's a little bit different than cutting taxes. ...

    The great experiment with trickle down (economics) over the past eight years at the federal level hasn't really generated the kind of growth we'd like to see. In fact, we're in a massive national recession.

    Lather, rinse, repeat. Democrats can't say this enough.

    Thank you Governor for all that you do, hope you had a great day!