Michigan passing legislation that would allow governor to fire elected officials, unions, and hand over administration to hired personel (or a firm).

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    Mar 13, 2011 4:31 AM GMT
    Here is the bill for your reading pleasure.

    http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2011-2012/billengrossed/House/pdf/2011-HEBS-4214.pdf

    I believe this is what Giorgio Agamben would call the state of exception, or what Naomi Klein would call "Shock Doctrine". The michigan governor (currently republican, but not that even fucking matters at this point) is giving himself the right to, as forbes magazine put it:

    Snyder’s law gives the state government the power not only to break up unions, but to dissolve entire local governments and place appointed “Emergency Managers” in their stead. But that’s not all – whole cities could be eliminated if Emergency Managers and the governor choose to do so. And Snyder can fire elected officials unilaterally, without any input from voters. It doesn’t get much more anti-Democratic than that.

    Except it does. The governor simply has to declare a financial emergency to invoke these powers – or he can hire a private company to declare financial emergency and take over oversight of the city. That’s right, a private corporation can declare your city in a state of financial emergency and send in its Emergency Manager, fire your elected officials, and reap the benefits of the ensuing state contracts.
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    Mar 13, 2011 4:42 AM GMT
    Great post.

    Now that the Repubs don't have the power to hand over multi-billion dollar contracts in Iraq to Halliburton and it's ilk, they're trying to do it right here in the good old U. S. of A.

    The Repubs may say that there's not enough money to pay teachers and other hard-working middle class workers a decent wage, but they will always find a way to scam and siphon off plenty of our tax dollars to "private corporations" (that donate $$$$$$$$$$ to the Repub party).
    And the Repubs will always find an excuse to try to justify giving tax cuts to the richest 1-2% 0f Americans (who are largely Republican voters who donate $$$$$$$$$$ to the Repub party).

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    Mar 13, 2011 5:03 AM GMT
    I don't think that it's so insidious as that, and this is why I'm hesitant to participate in these dem v. repub threads. This is motivated by a genuine desire to try and allocate resources in the market. But what baffles me is that even some of the most staunch backers of neocon theory are now having existential breakdowns because of the damage that chicago school economics has caused. Martin Wolf at the financial times dates this back to the collapse of bear stearns:

    “Remember Friday March 14th: it was the day the dream of global free-market capitalism died. For three decades we have moved towards market-driven financial systems. By its decision to rescue Bear Stearns the Federal Reserve, the institution responsible for monetary policy in the US, chief protagonist of free market capitalism, declared this era over. It showed in deeds its agreement with the remark by Joseph Ackerman, chief executive of Deutsche Bank that, ‘I no longer believe in the market’s self-healing power.’ Deregulation has reached its limits.”

    Whether or not this is a republican or democrat is besides the point as neoconservatism/neoliberalism is the dominant (yet somehow still dead) philosophy that many in government (even here in canada *cough Ignatieff cough*) are still operating under in both parties.

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    Mar 13, 2011 5:34 AM GMT
    Fountains saidI don't think that it's so insidious as that, and this is why I'm hesitant to participate in these dem v. repub threads. This is motivated by a genuine desire to try and allocate resources in the market. But what baffles me is that even some of the most staunch backers of neocon theory are now having existential breakdowns because of the damage that chicago school economics has caused. Martin Wolf at the financial times dates this back to the collapse of bear stearns:

    “Remember Friday March 14th: it was the day the dream of global free-market capitalism died. For three decades we have moved towards market-driven financial systems. By its decision to rescue Bear Stearns the Federal Reserve, the institution responsible for monetary policy in the US, chief protagonist of free market capitalism, declared this era over. It showed in deeds its agreement with the remark by Joseph Ackerman, chief executive of Deutsche Bank that, ‘I no longer believe in the market’s self-healing power.’ Deregulation has reached its limits.”

    Whether or not this is a republican or democrat is besides the point as neoconservatism/neoliberalism is the dominant (yet somehow still dead) philosophy that many in government (even here in canada *cough Ignatieff cough*) are still operating under in both parties.





    NOPE.
    This is "motivated by a genuine desire" on the part of the Republicans to bust up the unions, which will hurt the Democratic party's ability to win elections.
    It's ugly selfish partisan politics, pure and simple.
    The Repubs are "motivated by a genuine desire" to help themselves win more elections.
    And taking the work and jobs and power from union workers and giving them to private corporations friendly to the Repub party is just the icing on the cake.

    It's nice that you're making an effort to be bi-partisan.
    But, really - please name and describe any DEMOCRATIC politicians who are doing anything remotely akin to this grossly corrupt and - as you accurately described it - "anti-Democratic" - outrage.
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    Mar 13, 2011 6:17 AM GMT
    "(even here in canada *cough Ignatieff cough*)"

    lol, we've been thinking about this, too.

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    Mar 13, 2011 6:17 PM GMT
    rickrick91 said
    It's nice that you're making an effort to be bi-partisan.
    But, really - please name and describe any DEMOCRATIC politicians who are doing anything remotely akin to this grossly corrupt and - as you accurately described it - "anti-Democratic" - outrage.


    It's called third way politics and it's a nice way of saying "let's allocate as many resources in the market, but slowly". As for democratic candidates who push for privatization, does Bill Clinton suffice? He made significant proposals to "allow private citizens to invest their social security taxes in the market" which sounds a lot like privatization to me. He also began the long string of privatized prisons in the united states. Similar to the way the department of defence was gutted and privatized under Rumsfeld.

    Again, what I'm trying to say is that neoconservatism (or neoliberalism as it's known in the rest of the world) is still the dominant theoretical mode which informs governmental practice. It's not a matter of democrats or republicans at this point, but rather it's about trying to deconstruct the way that systems of power inflict such conditions onto citizens. ask yourself this: why are we funding private prisons when they have no measurable effect on preventing crime, if anything they increase recidivism rates? The question shouldn't be to privatize or not, but rather why do we continue to do such things despite that they have no measurable positive effect on society except for the pocketbooks of the wealthiest?

    When I asked my self this question I came to the conclusion that such a system was in and of itself illegitimate because it fails to represent any of its participants and over represents the already over privileged. (and just for the record state communism is an even worse option because it just made the state into one large corporation). The answer that I advocate for these days is a non-hierarchical mode of organizing that we saw in Argentina post-economic collapse in the early 2000s. When chicago school economics (deregulation) caused financial collapse, workers broke into their own factories and started work and organized themselves according to an assembly or "town hall" kind of decision making process where things were done by consensus. The result was that without bosses there to make exorbitant salaries, the actual workers were able to pay themselves more and sell their product at a far more competitive rate while actually increasing the quality of what was produced. Often times this approach is called anarcho-syndicalism and it's when production is organized by small union shops and it has the most positive effect for all parties involved (except the rich, but I don't care about them anyway).
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    Mar 13, 2011 6:48 PM GMT
    Fountains said
    rickrick91 said
    It's nice that you're making an effort to be bi-partisan.
    But, really - please name and describe any DEMOCRATIC politicians who are doing anything remotely akin to this grossly corrupt and - as you accurately described it - "anti-Democratic" - outrage.


    It's called third way politics and it's a nice way of saying "let's allocate as many resources in the market, but slowly". As for democratic candidates who push for privatization, does Bill Clinton suffice? He made significant proposals to "allow private citizens to invest their social security taxes in the market" which sounds a lot like privatization to me. He also began the long string of privatized prisons in the united states. Similar to the way the department of defence was gutted and privatized under Rumsfeld.

    Again, what I'm trying to say is that neoconservatism (or neoliberalism as it's known in the rest of the world) is still the dominant theoretical mode which informs governmental practice. It's not a matter of democrats or republicans at this point, but rather it's about trying to deconstruct the way that systems of power inflict such conditions onto citizens. ask yourself this: why are we funding private prisons when they have no measurable effect on preventing crime, if anything they increase recidivism rates? The question shouldn't be to privatize or not, but rather why do we continue to do such things despite that they have no measurable positive effect on society except for the pocketbooks of the wealthiest?

    When I asked my self this question I came to the conclusion that such a system was in and of itself illegitimate because it fails to represent any of its participants and over represents the already over privileged. (and just for the record state communism is an even worse option because it just made the state into one large corporation). The answer that I advocate for these days is a non-hierarchical mode of organizing that we saw in Argentina post-economic collapse in the early 2000s. When chicago school economics (deregulation) caused financial collapse, workers broke into their own factories and started work and organized themselves according to an assembly or "town hall" kind of decision making process where things were done by consensus. The result was that without bosses there to make exorbitant salaries, the actual workers were able to pay themselves more and sell their product at a far more competitive rate while actually increasing the quality of what was produced. Often times this approach is called anarcho-syndicalism and it's when production is organized by small union shops and it has the most positive effect for all parties involved (except the rich, but I don't care about them anyway).




    You're talking about POLICY.
    The outrageousness of what's happening in Michigan isn't just about policy.
    It's even more about the fascist and dictatorial method of implementation.
    AND the fact that the changes that are going to be implemented are going to be implemented in a way that will give government power to pro-Republican partisans - BY THE REPUBLICAN PARTY - and not by voters at the voting booth.
    Republican politicians are moving in a dictatorial way to take power away from unions, and to give that power to private corporations that support the Republican party.
    They're motivated by greed for greater political power.
    It's a power grab that smacks of the kind of actions taken by dictators like Gadhafi and Mubarak.

    Bill Clinton did NOT push for privatization in the outrageously dictatorial way that these Michigan Repubs are.
    And his motive in supporting some privatization was NOT a selfish partisan political motive of trying to strip Republican entitities of their power so he could then hand that power over to Democratic party control.

  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Mar 13, 2011 8:35 PM GMT
    We are coming to a time where the outcome and the tools the right are using are being exposed
    in large part because they can no longer sweep it under the rug and euphemistically say that it's good for the middle class when all they've done and worked for is to annihilate them

    They have used what Naomi Klein called the Shock Doctrine to great effect
    to amass power and wealth like we haven't seen in more than a century

    They have managed to use the crisis of financial collapse .... something THEY were principally responsible for through their mantra of deregulation and laissez-faire economics to where they are now stating they MUST have More Power in order to stop these budgetary crises

    We've had our civil liberties stripped from us because a small group of religious zealots were allowed to go on a rampage
    we were duped into allowing a mad man to wage war because of it ... on a lie
    hundreds of thousands were killed and maimed

    and now we have the coup degras
    where some sap of the wealthy men pulling the strings are taking away the collective rights of workers that gave us many of the things that we now take for granted as workers rights
    things like the 5 day week and the 8 hour work day
    the entities who watch for those principles are now coming under attack
    and now even local government who can see things differently sometimes than the corporate controlled government are seeing that they too can be "dissolved" if they don't tow the line