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  • Rovers Scooter Club Celebrates 10 Years

    Rovers Scooter Club, a local gang dedicated to celebrating and riding motor scooters, will be celebrating its 10 year anniversary this week with a very special ride. Motor City Shakedown, the annual birthday party for the club, will commence this Friday, August 1 at New Way Bar. DJ Grover from Cincinnati will be spinning northern soul, reggae, and ska, according to club member Michael Palazzola. Saturday will feature a ride from Ferndale to Detroit, starting at noon at M-Brew. Palazzola says this is where most bikes will congregate before taking the ride to the city and folks will be prepping by getting some grub starting at 10 a.m.  Detroit’s Tangent Gallery will host the after party,  a special event that will feature performances by several bands as well as Satori Circus. That portion of the event will commence at 8 p.m. with performances starting at 9 p.m. It’s free to riders, but the public is welcome to join the party with the mere cost of a door charge. Come midnight, the club will raffle off a vintage Lambretta LI 150. Sunday morning will end the weekend of festivities, with brunch taking place at the Bosco in Ferndale.   

    The post Rovers Scooter Club Celebrates 10 Years appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Lessenberry on the battle to ban the Metro Times

    Turns out, our very own Jack Lessenberry knows the Grosse Pointer seeking to ban the MT: Ten years or so ago, a woman named Andrea Lavigne sat in on some media survey classes I was teaching at Wayne State University. She was in her late 30s or early 40s, and seemed to be searching for answers. She wanted to know how the media work, and told me she was a Maoist. This fascinated me, because I thought authentic Maoists were almost as rare as passenger pigeons. Chairman Mao, we now know, starved to death and slaughtered tens of millions of his own citizens, and kept China economically and intellectually backward. Intrigued, I got together one night before class with her and another Maoist, to find out what they were all about. Alas, they spouted a form of primitive, grade-school Marxism. They seemed to have very little historical knowledge of Communism or what it had actually been like. Yes. A Maoist. Read the full story at Michigan Radio here.

    The post Lessenberry on the battle to ban the Metro Times appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Detroit residents sue incinerator owner over ‘noxious odors and contaminants’

    A class-action lawsuit has been filed against the owner of Detroit’s municipal solid waste incinerator Monday, accusing the company of nuisance and gross negligence violations According to the complaint filed by Detroit-based Liddle & Dubin P.C., “On occasions too numerous to list, Plaintiffs’ property including Plaintiffs’ neighborhood, residences and yards were physically invaded by noxious odors and contaminants … As a direct and proximate result of the Defendant’s’ negligence in operating and/or maintaining the facility, Plaintiffs’ property has been invaded by noxious odors.” The eight-page complaint charges that local property values have dropped due to the incinerator’s presence, “and has interfered with Plaintiffs’ use and enjoyment of their property.” The lawsuit, filed in Wayne County Circuit Court, seeks a financial award in excess of $25,000 and all costs and attorney fees related to the case. In an email, a spokesperson for the company says, “Detroit Renewable Power is reviewing the complaint filed today,” but declined further comment. The suit comes weeks after a Metro Times’ cover story earlier this month found a growing number of odor complaints from nearby residents since Detroit Renewable Power LLC (DRP) took control of the facility in 2010. The investigation found a spike in citations from the Michigan Department […]

    The post Detroit residents sue incinerator owner over ‘noxious odors and contaminants’ appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Winners announced for the ‘High Times’ Medical Cannabis Cup

    The High Times Medical Cannabis Cup is more than just a celebration — although with the recent shift in attitudes toward marijuana legalization, there certainly is much to celebrate.  HT‘s Danny Danko described it as “just like any other harvest festival or a county fair where people bring their best produce, their best pigs and horses and cows, and they compete with each other for bragging rights, basically.” Here are a list of winners from this year’s Cannabis Cup, who did indeed walk home with some well-deserved bragging rights — if anyone knows their marijuana it’s High Times: Indica 1ST - Oasis Medical Seeds - Paris OG 2ND - Herbal Solutions - Alien Dawg F2 3RD - Herban Legendz, LLC - Grape OX Sativa 1ST - Arborside Compassion - CATFISH 2ND - Organibliss - Ghost Train Haze #1 3RD - We Grow Education and Collective Centers - MelonGum Hybrid 1ST - Herbal Solutions - Gorilla Glue 2ND - Pure West Compassion Club - Death Star 3RD - Kushman Veganics for Buds & Roses - Veganic Candyland Concentrate 1ST - Mr. B’s Extracts - Raskal’s Lemon 2ND - 710 Savant - Kosher Kush Dewaxed 3RD - Oasis Medical / Vader Extracts / Dab Vader - Candy Jack Shatter Non-Solvent Hash 1ST - NLG - Jedi Kush Ice Wax 2ND - Arborside Compassion - HeadCandy Kush Hash 3RD - New World Seeds Resource […]

    The post Winners announced for the ‘High Times’ Medical Cannabis Cup appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Satanists Leverage Hobby Lobby Ruling In Support of Pro­Choice Initiative

    So is the title of the press release we received this morning from The Satanic Temple. You may recall our interview with Doug Mesner from earlier this year. The Satanic Temple is, perhaps, best known for trying to build a child-friendly monument to satan in OKC: How Mesner and TST are rocking the Hobby Lobby ruling is interesting: The Satanic Temple Leverages Hobby Lobby Ruling to Claim Exemption From State Mandated ProLife Materials Reads the next line of the press release. And then their website: A number of states require that abortion providers give information to patients that maybe inaccurate or misleading. Demands that members of the Satanic Temple, or those who share our beliefs, be subjected against our will to anything but the best scientific understanding are a violation of our religious beliefs. Thanks to rulings such as Hobby Lobby, we can take a stand against these practices. Mesner points out how the Hobby Lobby ruling bolsters their position: While we feel we have a strong case for an exemption regardless of the Hobby Lobby ruling, the Supreme Court has decided that religious beliefs are so sacrosanct that they can even trump scientific fact. This was made clear when […]

    The post Satanists Leverage Hobby Lobby Ruling In Support of Pro­Choice Initiative appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Reports from the ‘High Times’ Medical Marijuana Cup in Clio

    On Saturday we set out to check out the High Times Medical Marijuana Cup in Clio, Mich. — High Times did hold a Cannabis Cup in the Motor City back in 2011, but Detroit police flexing their muscles and making arrests at that event may have been to blame, at least partially, for the choice of a new host city. The event was held this year at the Auto City Speedway, (also known as “B.F.E.” to Detroiters). Nevertheless, the prospect of stopping at the Torch for the best burger in the Genessee County was compelling — and anyway, this was the Cannabis Cup we were talking about. Was it really going to be “work?” It turned out, just a little bit. An inexplicable lack of an on-site ATM meant hiking quite a ways up the road to the nearest gas station, and then waiting for an attendant to restock the ATM with cash. We spoke with plenty of Cannabis Cup attendees at the gas station — everybody knows that the local gas station is a stoner’s best-friend. The two-day festival, for which one-day tickets were sold for $40, was divided into two sections — a general area and a medicating […]

    The post Reports from the ‘High Times’ Medical Marijuana Cup in Clio appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.



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Politics & Prejudices

Anatomy of a smear

Case against U.S. Rep. Dale Kildee doesn’t pass the smell test

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What do you have in common with the rat I saw the other day, running under a trash bin behind a grocery store?

Well, my guess is that you like to eat, are capable of fear and at some point in your life have wanted sex. Think about that, and you understand the mentality of those who run much of the mass media.

Like rats, they aren't especially concerned with fairness, but are sometimes far more malicious. We had a nice example of that last week, when suddenly, stories surfaced saying that elderly, retiring Flint-area U.S. Rep. Dale Kildee was being accused of "improperly touching" a male teenage cousin almost a half-century ago.

WNEM-TV in Flint began heavily promoting their "exclusive I-team report" on this issue, which aired Nov. 21. What it turned out to be, however, was an outrageous hatchet job, in which their "six-month" investigation consisted mainly of an interview with the alleged victim, one Patrick Kildee. The station showed Patrick claiming that back in 1964, when he was 15, the future Democratic congressman "would take my little penis and start rubbing it. ... I had no understanding of what my penis was, other than for going to the bathroom."

Give me a break. That sounds like something a 4-year-old might say. Fifteen-year-old boys have been through puberty and most have been enthusiastically masturbating for years.

Patrick claimed that this ruined his life, and caused him to inflict many wounds on his own body. Eventually, he was diagnosed as a schizophrenic manic-depressive, according to WNEM. In a previously taped audio interview, Patrick's mother talked about her son's drug and alcohol abuse as well as his mental problems.

Why didn't he complain a long time ago? Well, he forgot. Years later, his "repressed memories" came out while in a state mental hospital.

Basically, then, we have the word of a schizophrenic against that of a man who has served in Congress since 1977, and about whom there has been no previous scandal.

The allegation wouldn't stand the test of reasonable evidence in any court, or journalism's two-source rule.  Oh, the Flint station had "other sources" — family members who said they believed what Patrick said. The congressman angrily denied all of it.

Kildee, 82, said this was the result of a failed blackmail attempt by the alleged victim's son in September, and that he had gone to the FBI about this. And while Dale Kildee announced last summer his decision to retire, there may be a political motive for smearing the family name: Dan Kildee, the former Genesee County treasurer, is running to succeed his uncle.

The "story" first surfaced recently on the blog of a Washington-area blogger named Susan Bradford. The right-wing Washington Times then picked it up, at which point Bradford got cold feet. She announced that she had been approached by one Jon Yinger, a "Christian" broadcaster with a history of donating money to the Republican Party.

Later, the Flint Journal discovered that the broadcast interview with Patrick Kildee "was coordinated by Genesee County Republican Party Chairwoman Prudy Adam and Yinger."

No other media outlet has been able to find the cousin, who allegedly lives in a trailer in New Mexico. Patrick Clawson, a former CNN investigative reporter who lives in Flint, told me that GOP operatives tried to shop the story to him a year ago.

Clawson is not in awe of big names. He's the journalist who uncovered the story last year that then-Gov. Jennifer Granholm had awarded a tax break and appeared smiling on camera with a convicted fraud artist whose business was entirely a scam.

As for Kildee, "Another investigative reporter and I independently checked out this more than a year ago," Clawson said. "We both concluded that these allegations could not be substantiated in any way, and were most likely false.

"The real story here is how incompetent journalists and partisan political opponents came together to smear a very good and decent man," Clawson added. Clawson — a libertarian, not a liberal — has known Kildee for nearly half a century. "Don't get me wrong. If I had turned up credible evidence that Dale Kildee or anyone else was a pedophile, I'd have hung him or anyone out to dry. But there wasn't anything there. ... If I tried to broadcast this when I worked at CNN or NBC, I would have been kicked out and fired," he said.

What is filthiest about all this is that some people will always believe it, and a taint will hang over the head of an elderly man who fought hard for fairness and was known for honesty his entire career.

History shows that a lot of straight-seeming men have had very bizarre sex lives. But here's why I don't believe any of these accusations:

Those who prey on children never stop with a single child. When they are caught (think Jerry Sandusky) other victims start coming forward. Since this "story" broke, guess how many other people have said Dale Kildee ever did anything to them? Not a single one.


Having the right stuff:  Earlier this month, Wayne County Circuit Judge Prentis Edwards Sr. again ruled against Manuel "Matty" Moroun, who owns the Ambassador Bridge. Judge Edwards has long had the outrageous idea that Moroun should follow the law, live up to signed agreements and comply with court orders.

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