Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Six O'Clock News - Back to Reality Edition

  • A little perspective on what MSU accomplished: There are 347 teams in Division 1 men's college basketball. Only 64 of those are invited to the big dance. MSU ended up at number two out of the best of the best, losing to a team that is essentially the NBA's minor league club. And there is this - it is just a game. Supposed to be fun, remember? So, appreciate the fun we had for awhile. It was a good time, and I'm still proud of these guys. They got a lot of heart, and it took them farther than we ever thought they would go.

  • Andy Dillon's idea to revamp the tax system made the Freep over the weekend. He is working with Detroit Renaissance, who has hired notorious right wing economist Patrick Anderson, to try to solidify a plan - and that might be a bad sign. Business is opposed to... well... anything that doesn't benefit business alone. All they want to do is cut taxes, and they will never, ever tell you that it will mean more cuts to education, public safety, health care, and other quality of life issues. Good luck to the Speaker on this quest. Be sure and show us the true cost, or someone will do it for you.

  • Along that line, the Freep promises us they will keep score on the budget issues this year. Thank God someone is, because y'all fumbled that ball in '07. They give a very basic rundown of the problem, which in the end simply adds up to the fact that we don't make enough money. If taxes aren't raised or restructured, we need to make more cuts. Given the howls of outrage over the cuts the governor already proposed, and the fact that the legiscritters, both R & D, are adding more spending to a budget that is already looking at a $2B deficit, we are in for an interesting time this year.

  • Mike Bishop makes a good case as to why Mike Bishop shouldn't hold elected office by once more slamming the stimulus that he voted for. Anyone that thinks that government is doomed to failure will probably work to make sure that theory comes true. Would you a hire a guy for your company that repeatedly claims your company will never be successful? Hell no. So why would you elect politicians like that to run your government? Some things are beyond me.

  • Sven Gustafson notes that Chrysler makes a good case for staving off bankruptcy with the A123 announcement yesterday. Will it be enough? Good question. If not, Gustafson warns "Michigan will have bigger things to worry about". And he's right.

  • Dr. Martin Kaufman of the U of M-Flint asks a question that I have always wondered about: Why can't GM retool and produce parts for both the alternative energy industry and/or high-speed transit? The demand is there, the only problem I can think of is they might worry about a consistent volume on orders. All GM would say is "thanks, but no thanks, we do cars", which was unsatisfying to say the least.

  • GM did team up with Segway for a two-seat electric urban car. Interesting concept for a very congested city like New York. It can reach up to 35mph and has a range of 35 miles on one charge. GM hasn't committed to mass production yet; this first offering is simply a prototype and they will advance the concept for the 2010 auto shows.

  • The GR Press questions why legislators would want to curtail our movie industry in its infancy, and asks that the credits be given time to work. They mention Cassis and Gilbert only. If the Republicans have lost the GR Press editorial staff, you might as well can the idea.

  • The Detroit City Council voted to have the Michigan Central Station demolished with federal stimulus funds. Detroit is getting $47 million from the stimulus to fight blight, estimated cost of tearing down the depot is $3.6 million, with a promise to go after Maroun later. Guess I won't be able to get pics after all.

  • Why do we need to save the banks? Because they have the money. As with the alternative energy industry, other tech start-ups are finding that venture capital sources are drying up, and someone needs to make these guys some loans so they can create the businesses that will create the jobs. Then they can turn around and demand more tax cuts. See how this works?