Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Six O'Clock News - Equal Pay Day Edition

  • MI House Democrats are reintroducing pay equity legislation in honor of National Equal Pay Day. Women earn .78 on the dollar compared to men; in Michigan that falls to .71, 44th among the states according to 2007 census data. Key line in this story?

    Some similar bills passed the Democrat-led House in recent years but died in the Republican-led Senate.

    And Little Suzy Creamcheese wonders why we "whine" about Mike Bishop. Well, after you have read the line "died in the Republican-led Senate" on hundreds of stories concerning legislation that was designed to help the people of Michigan and move this state forward, and you check the numbers on the production out of that very same "Republican-led" Senate, you start to see exactly where the problem is, don't you? I mean, who wouldn't? Well, since some members of the "traditional" media have been blinded by those "mirthful, aquamarine eyes", we have to try any way we can to get the word out. So sorry if that disturbs you. Not.

  • Speaking of the wingnuts, Kent County Republicans have cancelled a speech by very popular Utah Governor John Huntsman. Described as a "rising star" in the GOP, the Mormon Huntsman supports - gasp! - civil unions, and the local head of the Kent County Republican Party Joanne Voorhees pulled the plug on that issue alone, citing the local Tea Party (seriously?) and the desire to "stand on principle". OK Jo, you stand on your "principle" of bigotry and intolerance, and we'll keep winning the elections. Sounds like a plan.

  • While the Republicans are still pulling bonehead moves like that, the real world carries on, and the fallout from the GM announcement continues. GM is going to force 1,000 to 1,200 dealers to close, and word comes today that American Axle will cut hundreds of jobs in Detroit and move them to Mexico. GM is American Axle's biggest customer.

  • Better car news - Ford claims that they got 81.5 mpg on an unmodified 2010 Fusion just by using "fuel-saving driving techniques", like coasting to red lights and smooth acceleration. Yowza. Sounds like they might have a winner with this car.

  • The U of M has landed a five year, $19.5 million research grant "to improve the efficiency of solar materials, which are used in photovoltaic solar panels and geothermal technology", strengthening Michigan's position as a leader in solar energy technology. The grant comes from the DoE and is funded by the stimulus. The White House has declared the U of M one of its 46 "Energy Frontier Research Centers", collaborations designed for breakthroughs on alternative energy development. Nice.

  • Deb Price and David Shepardson at the DNews has a nice write-up on how the Obama administration has helped Michigan with stimulus funding for roads, advanced batteries, health care, budget woes, unemployment and more. Good summary of the first 100 days and the benefits to this state, especially when you think of what it would be like had McCain won... * shudder *. Let's not go there.

  • Forgot to mention yesterday, NPR ran a great series last week: "Remaking Michigan, Retooling Detroit". Check the link for 13 segments on the various issues facing the continuing diversification of our state.