Trending
Most Read
  • City Slang: Diana Ross to open Freedom Hill season

    Motown legend Diana Ross will open up the Freedom Hill season on Friday, June 13. “We’re thrilled to have one of the greatest Motown singers of all time, Diana Ross, open our facility this season,” said Tom Celani, Owner of Luna Hillside, LLC. “We continue to bring big name talent to our venue and know fans will have a memorable time at this concert and throughout the 2014 season. A press release reads, “Born and raised in Detroit, Ross rose to fame as a founding member and lead singer of the renowned vocal group The Supremes, which, during the 1960s, became Motown’s most successful act and is to this day America’s most successful vocal group. In 1993, the Guinness Book of World Records declared Ross the most successful female music artist in history due to her success in the United States and United Kingdom for having more hits than any female artist in the charts with a career total of 70 hit singles and sold more than 100 million records worldwide with her work with the Supremes and as a solo artist.” Tickets go on sale Friday, April 25 at 10 a.m. Reserved tickets are $39.50, and there are a […]

    The post City Slang: Diana Ross to open Freedom Hill season appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • The Ypsilanti mystery pooper saga continues

    Ypsilanti police are still searching for the person dubbed the “mystery pooper.” Someone has been, as the Associated Press politely puts it today, “soiling slides at an Ypislanti playground over the last six months.” So, of course, someone purchased an electronic billboard along I-94 near Huron St. at exit 183 that delivers multiple calls for action: For instance,”Help us flush the pooper.” The company that purchased the billboard, Adams Outdoor Advertising, knows how to reach the world in the 21st Century, branding each billboard with a hashtag for the public utilize in its efforts: #ypsipooper. WJBK-TV says the billboard also toggles through other rich lines, such as: “Do your civic doody, report the pooper #YPSIPOOPER” “Help us catch the poopetrator #YPSIPOOPER.” You can have the runs, but you can’t hide. They’re still looking for you, Mystery Pooper.

    The post The Ypsilanti mystery pooper saga continues appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: DJ AvA, Chuck Flask & Keith Kemp preview Movement at Urban Bean Co.

    It’s a really, very cool idea. Paxahau, the good people behind the Movement Electronic Music Festival, are hosting a series of warm-up events, or previews, to the big festival which takes place Memorial Day weekend. On Thursday evening, Movement moved into the Urban Coffee Bean on Grand River in Detroit. While Dj AvA and Chuck Flask & Keith Kemp ably worked the decks, the regular coffee shop goings on continued behind them. It made for an interesting and amusing webcast experience – one guy was taking a nap on camera, while others supped coffee and tappd their feet. It should come as no surprise – the Urban Coffee Co. people have always been big supporters of electronic music. The place includes a DJ stand, and co-owner Josh Greenwood encourages customers to bring their own vinyl and spin on the open turntables. Not on Thursday night though. This being a coffee shop, and it not being particularly late at night, the music remained pretty chill throughout. DJ AvA (real name Heather McGuigan) includes Beth Orton, Madonna, the B-52’s, Daftpunk and David Byrne among her list of influences, so you know that she’s capable of both whipping up a storm and also […]

    The post City Slang: DJ AvA, Chuck Flask & Keith Kemp preview Movement at Urban Bean Co. appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Here is why landlords could do well in Wayne County

    CNN has a message to all prospective landlords: Head to Wayne County! Occupancy and rental rates are increasing, the report says, creating an opportunity for serious returns on investments. In fact, after comparing the median sales price of homes to average monthly rents in nearly 1,600 counties, RealtyTrac found that Detroit’s Wayne County offers landlords the best return on their investment in the nation. Investors who buy homes in the metro area can expect a 30% gross annual return from rents. That’s triple the national average of 10%. RealtyTrac, an online real estate information company, says the county offers investors low prices for larger homes — with a median price of $45,000. “We’ve got some steals here,” said Rachel Saltmarshall, a real estate agent and immediate past president of the Detroit Association of Realtors, told CNN. “There’s a six-bedroom, 6,000 square-foot home in a historic district selling for $65,000.” For more, read the entire report here.

    The post Here is why landlords could do well in Wayne County appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • The Record Store Day Guide for metro Detroit

    This Saturday, audiophiles across the world will venture out to their favorite independent record stores in search of limited releases that quickly become collectors items. The third Saturday of April marks the fairly new international holiday Record Store Day. There are certainly dos and don’ts to know for RSD — like where to shop, and how to shop. That’s right, there is an etiquette to shopping on Record Store Day and violating that code makes you look like a real asshole. In my experience of celebrating Record Store Day, I’ve seen stores use a few different tactics as far as stocking the special releases. Some establishments will set up a table, somewhere in the store, where a few shoppers at a time can flip through records in a calm and contained manner. Other places will have a similar setup, with all the releases at a table, but shoppers ask the store employees for the releases they want. It’s like a record nerd stock exchange. This process gets loud, slightly confusing and incredibly annoying — this is where elbows start getting thrown. Then, there are places that put the releases on the shelves, usually categorized by size — twelve inches with the twelve inches, seven inches with the seven inches and […]

    The post The Record Store Day Guide for metro Detroit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: DEMF 2014 canceled

    The Detroit Electronic Music Festival, which was supposed to be making a triumphant return this year, has been canceled. A statement on the website says that the festival will be back in 2015. Back in November, Ford Field hosted an announcement party for DEMF, where it was revealed that a new DEMF festival would take place at Campus Martius Park in Detroit over the July 4th weekend. “I’m proud to be involved in the biggest and best electronic music festival in the world,” said Juan Atkins. “The future’s here. This is techno scene.” Not the immediate future, apparently. The DEMF people claim that the M-1 rail construction is partially to blame for the cancellation/12-month-postponement. Read the full statement here. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: DEMF 2014 canceled appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

Calendar

Calendar

Search thousands of events in our database.

Restaurants

Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.

Nightlife

Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

MT on Twitter
MT on Facebook

Print Email

Politics & Prejudices

Farewell, Western civilization

Giving away the Great Lakes for fun and profit

Photo: N/A, License: N/A


Don't it always seem to go

That you don't know what you've got till it's gone.

—Joni Mitchell

 

Here's something that you should find far scarier than a whole brigade of religious nuts with explosives in their underwear: The ignorant, callous right-wing nuts in the Ohio Legislature passed a bill this month that could have destroyed Lake Erie. That's not an exaggeration. Ohio House Bill 231 would have allowed businesses to withdraw up to 5 million gallons a day from the lake without even getting any kind of permit

What's more, they could have siphoned off another 2 million gallons a day from inland rivers and streams. True, Ohio, Michigan and the other six Great Lakes states, Congress and Canada signed an agreement a couple years ago called the Great Lakes Compact that was designed to protect the lakes, the largest source of fresh water in the world. But the cretins couldn't care less about such things.

This was the dead brainchild, by the way, of an Ohio state representative named Lynn Wachtmann, who lives in a hamlet called Napoleon outside Toledo. Wachtmann has the interests of the public at heart, all right. He owns a business that pumps water out of the Lake Erie watershed and wants to get even richer, faster.

Destroy the Great Lakes, and this region has no future. They are immense, but any scientist can tell you how delicate the ecology is. We've been working hard for years at damaging them.

We've pumped pollution into the lakes, introduced invasive species and seem unwilling to do what's needed to stop the Asian carp, which are likely to do their worst damage to Lake Erie.

And now this. What would pumping that water out likely do to the lake? Well, many bad things. But at the top of the list is create a perfect breeding ground for toxic, ugly, blue-green algae. 

This eyesore smells as bad as it looks, produces a toxin that is harmful to both humans and animals and is already a growing threat. That's thanks to farms, especially megafarms and factory farms, which produce large amounts of phosphorus as a byproduct, a chemical that then leaches into the lakes. Lowering the water level concentrates the phosphorus.

Phosphorus is what makes the algae grow. We literally could be facing an ecological disaster. (The moon-faced Wachtmann says these are merely "insignificant" withdrawals.)

For a while, it appeared that Gov. John Kasich, no great environmentalist himself, would sign this turkey into law. But in the end, he vetoed it, saying it didn't provide for "sufficient evaluation and monitoring" of water usage. Kasich, in fact, had come under heavy pressure not to sign it. Not just from every environmental group under the sun, but from sensible Republicans, including former Gov. Bob Taft. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo flatly threatened to sue Ohio. So Kasich backed off ... for now.

Significantly, he didn't say the bill allowed too much water to be withdrawn. He praised it, and sent it back to the drawing board. The idea is to wait till the heat's off, modify it slightly and slip it through.

That cannot be allowed to happen, if we are to have a future. Anyone who cares about the future needs to be vigilant. Frankly, the federal government should intervene, though it probably won't.

The choice is pretty stark. Future generations can have a future. Or they can have a huckster politician with a bottling plant who can be allowed to steal from them — and us — so he can get as rich as he wants to.

What a country.

 

Farewell to Congress: Dale Kildee, the longtime congressman from Flint, is unlikely to have any monuments in Washington. He arrived in the Capitol in the last days of the Ford administration, when an IBM Selectric typewriter was a high-tech personal communication device. He's been there ever since.

When he arrived, he was in his mid-40s. He is now in his 80s. They put him on the Education and Labor committee when he arrived; he will be on it till the day he leaves. He wasn't the driving force on any major legislation, didn't even get to chair a committee.

Instead, he stood up for workers and children (he was a high school teacher before entering politics). He did the best he could for his people during what have been the worst years in their history.

Flint was a General Motors company town. Ninety percent of the GM blue-collar jobs that were there when Kildee arrived in Washington are gone. The effect on the city was devastating. 

The congressmen did what he could, which wasn't very much. Nobody foresaw this when he got elected in the long-ago year of 1976, by going around and knocking on doors.

He won easily, and his campaign cost what he then thought was a lot of money — $48,595. You probably couldn't get elected dogcatcher for that today. Even Kildee, who has tried harder than most not to go nuts on spending, had to spend $1.2 million last year.

That was one of his closer races, though it wasn't really close. The voters have re-elected him 17 straight times, and Kildee could probably have stayed until he was senile or dropped dead.

That's what a lot of politicians do these days. Yet last week, this modest little man from Flint did the right thing. "Thirty-five years are enough," he said. He will retire at the end of next year.

My guess is that he will be succeeded by his nephew, Dan Kildee, though it's too early to say. Whoever does win will probably have to spend millions, for a two-year job that pays $174,000 a year.

There's something very wrong with that. By the way, in any other occupation, 83 would be seen as awfully old to finally retire.

But Michigan has three other congressmen in their 80s, two of whom are older than Kildee. They are mere shadows of their former selves, and show no sign of leaving. Isn't something also very wrong here? 

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus