Cowen believes McDonald’s digital ordering upgrades will drive the fast-food chain’s sales higher.
McDonald’s shares hit an all-time high on Tuesday as Wall Street expects sales to increase from new digital ordering kiosks that will replace cashiers in 2,500 restaurants.
Cowen raised its rating on McDonald’s shares to outperform from market perform because of the technology upgrades, which are slated for the fast-food chain’s restaurants this year.
McDonald’s shares rallied 26 percent this year through Monday compared to the S&P 500’s 10 percent return.
Andrew Charles from Cowen cited plans for the restaurant chain to roll out mobile ordering across 14,000 U.S. locations by the end of 2017. The technology upgrades, part of what McDonald’s calls “Experience of the Future,” includes digital ordering kiosks that will be offered in 2,500 restaurants by the end of the year and table delivery.
“MCD is cultivating a digital platform through mobile ordering and Experience of the Future (EOTF), an in-store technological overhaul most conspicuous through kiosk ordering and table delivery,” Charles wrote in a note to clients Tuesday. “Our analysis suggests efforts should bear fruit in 2018 with a combined 130 bps [basis points] contribution to U.S. comps [comparable sales].” Read the rest of this entry »
Mike Carter reports: Veteran Seattle police Officer Alex Chapackdee is accused of helping his brother-in-law and others smuggle at least 100 kilograms of marijuana to the East Coast. In return, Chapackdee was paid $10,000 a month, charges allege.
Federal prosecutors will ask that a suspended Seattle police officer charged with being part of a large-scale East Coast marijuana smuggling ring be held in jail pending trial.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Brian Tsuchida set a detention hearing Friday for Alex Chapackdee, who faces a mandatory-minimum five-year federal prison sentence — and perhaps up to 40 years — for his role in allegedly transporting hundreds of pounds of marijuana from Washington to Baltimore then driving back with boxes of cash. The court also could impose a fine of up to $5 million if he’s found guilty.
Chapackdee, a veteran Seattle police officer, appeared briefly in U.S. District Court in Seattle Monday afternoon along with three co-defendants named in a 15-page complaint unsealed Monday. He was arrested last Friday and suspended from duty without pay.
More than two dozens shocked friends and family members crowded Tsuchida’s courtroom during the brief hearing.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Vince Lombardi said the serious allegations and significant penalty prompted him to seek detention for all four defendants. Read the rest of this entry »
Craig Bannister writes: The pre-election predictions of communications professionals surveyed by PRWeek proved to be unanimously – and embarrassingly – wrong. Could every PR executive in the U.S. have been so off, or was this a case of media bias in choosing the “experts?”
On Nov. 8, PRWeek published “They’re with her: PR execs predict a resounding Clinton victory,” in which reported the pre-election predictions of 22 communications professional – not one of whom predicted Donald Trump would win the election. Not only were their predictions wrong, they were embarrassingly wrong, with some apparently more influenced by personal opinion than science.
As a result of the overwhelming inaccuracy of the experts surveyed, PRWeek’s “biggest lesson” for PR executives proved wrong:
“The greatest irony here and the biggest lesson for communications professionals: Donald Trump may lose tomorrow because millions of Latino, Muslim, and women voters he vilified – Democrats and Republicans among them—help push Hillary to victory.”
No, the “greatest irony here” is that those who make a living as barometers, and drivers, of public opinion could all be so far off.
Here are ten of their most outrageously bad predictions – and the wimpiest one.
Most Wildly Inaccurate:
“I believe that my former boss Hillary Clinton will make history and become the first woman POTUS and she will win by an Electoral College landslide of 322 to 216. That includes Florida, Nevada, and North Carolina.” – Kris Balderston, president of global public affairs and strategic engagement, FleishmanHillard
So, PRWeek surveyed a former Clinton employee, who picked Clinton. And, while Clinton did take Nevada’s six electoral votes, she lost 29 in Florida and 15 in North Carolina.
“There is no doubt in my mind that Hillary Clinton will be our next leader and that the Democrats will take back the Senate. My prediction is that we will be awed by the numbers.” – David Landis, president, Landis Communications Read the rest of this entry »
Dr Jill Stein Appeared on Fox New Sunday with Chris Wallace. Wallace immediately grills Jill Stein On the recount efforts asking “why not New Hampshire”. Why Only States that Clinton lost? Green Party candidate Jill Stein and Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace engaged in a pretty combative exchange today while discussing Stein’s recount efforts, with Wallace trying to get Stein to admit that there have been no recounts that have switched tens of thousands of votes.
Steven Crowder writes:
“At the end of the day, Jill Stein isn’t changing any hearts or minds over this. The longer this charade of a ‘recount’ continues, the more ridiculous leftists are going to look in regard to the election. Which is hard to do. At this point, Democrats are pulling a Usain Bolt in that they’re only breaking their own records. In this case, records in national embarrassment. They’ve already racked up the top ten highest scores. Looks like Stein wants to go for an even twenty.”
The interview started with Wallace wanting to know why Stein hadn’t requested a recount in New Hampshire even though Hillary Clinton carried that state by a much more narrow margin than the three states she did request recounts in. Stein explained that it was because the deadline had passed for New Hampshire.
After Stein noted that she would look to expand the recounts to other states if they see a systemic issue regarding machine error and hacking, Wallace asked Stein if she knew the highest number of votes that had been switched via a recount. When she brought up a situation with Toledo in 2004 where 90,000 votes were erroneously marked blank — she has brought this up before — Wallace explained that officially, the biggest change had been roughly 1200 during the 2000 Florida recount in that year’s presidential election. ‘There’s not a chance in the world here, Dr. Stein, that the vote is going to change in those three states,” Wallace exclaimed, pointing out the margin in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. Read the rest of this entry »
It will do 0-62 mph in 2.5 seconds.
Nick Jaynes reports: You might think the super-wealthy have it pretty easy, what with their private islands, private jets and the ability to buy just about anything. But there’s been one thing they’ve not been able to buy in a while: an all-new Bugatti.
In fact, it’s been more than 11 years since the Veyron first went on sale. Can you imagine driving the same Bugatti for a decade? I can’t even.
Thankfully, that more than decade-long nightmare is over; there’s finally an all-new one. It’s called the Chiron. Along with the illustrious French moniker (yes, Bugatti is French), it boasts a 1,500-horsepower 16-cylinder engine, room for two very lucky passengers and a base price of just more than $2.6 million.
Let’s not mince words here. Granted, simply based upon its price tag, the new Bugatti Chiron will be the chariot of global glitterati. Though, it’s more than a coupe from an elite brand. It hits the roads as the most powerful and fastest production car ever.
That impressive title is thanks to the 8.0-liter W16-cylinder engine mounted in the mid-rear of the car. If you’re not familiar with a W16, that’s OK. Only Bugatti uses such an engine.
Imagine two V8s intertwined into one shape. That’s a W16.
Along with two-stage turbocharging (a new Bugatti development), the Chiron’s W16 produces 1,500 horsepower and 1,180 pound-feet of torque. That, along with a very stout all-wheel drive system, allows it to go 0 to 62 mph in 2.5 seconds, and on to a limited top speed (it could do more) of 261 mph (although the speedo goes up to 310 mph). To put that into perspective, a 747 lifts off the ground at 180 mph.
Understandably, to be able to safely keep the car on the road, and, you know, bring it to a stop once in a while, Bugatti engineers had to go to great technical lengths. That meant they had to develop both a chassis and a braking system as stout as the most advanced and technically complex race cars in the world. Moreover, the tires were tested to aerospace tolerances, which makes sense, given the speeds this thing can hit.
Understandably, a huge, fuel-thirsty engine like that produces a lot of tailpipe pollutants at full throttle. Accordingly, the catalytic converters (the devices that clean the exhaust gases as they pass through it) in the titanium exhaust system are six times larger than catalytic converters fitted to a mid-size sedan. Read the rest of this entry »
The Christmas season was a bad time to be a criminal near a person with a weapon.
David Hookstead writes: There were a total of four incidents involving a person using a gun to stop a crime or other life-threatening incident between December 22 and December 26, according to a list compiled by the Crime Prevention Research Center.
Brandon Johnson was shot and killed after attempting to rob two men looking to buy a vehicle in Gary, Indiana during a Craigslist scam. Johnson’s girlfriend was also shot in the thigh but is expected to survive, according to the Washington Times. The shooter, who is from Illinois, told police that when he arrived to make the Craigslist purchase Johnson instead pulled a gun resulting in the shooter pulling out his own weapon to defend his life.
A criminal attempted to hold up Captain Max Seafood in Miramar, Florida. Except the robber didn’t get very far into his plan because an employee pulled out a gun and killed the suspect, according to NBC Miami. Read the rest of this entry »
By the Numbers is an honest and open discussion, hosted by Raheel Raza president of Muslims Facing Tomorrow, about Muslim opinions and demographics. This is about the acceptance that radical Islam is a bigger problem than most politically correct governments and individuals are ready to admit. Is ISIS, the Islamic State, trying to penetrate the US with the refugee influx, are Muslims radicalised in US soil, are organizations such as CAIR who purport represent American Muslims accepting and liberal or radicalised with links to terror organizations.
Detroit Police Chief Praises Guns
Casey Harper reports: Detroit’s police chief gave a bold proposition for deterring terrorists in his city: arm the citizens.
James Craig points out that a city full of armed residents is not nearly as easy a target as those with strict gun laws.
“If you’re a terrorist, or a carjacker, you want unarmed citizens.”
“A lot of Detroiters have CPLs (concealed pistol licenses), and the same rules apply to terrorists as they do to some gun-toting thug,” Craig tells The Detroit News. “If you’re a terrorist, or a carjacker, you want unarmed citizens.”
Craig points to a new Michigan law that makes it easier to obtain a concealed carry permit as another way to increase safety in the city. Read the rest of this entry »
How Bulletproof Is Thanksgiving Dinner? Find out in this episode of How Bulletproof. How Bulletproof is a web series that compares regular objects against the $299 BulletSafe Bulletproof Vest by shooting them with a .50 Cal Desert Eagle, one of the world’s most powerful handguns. The results are eye-opening and fun to watch. http://www.BulletSafe.com
HAMTRAMCK, MICH. — Sarah Pullman Bailey reports: Karen Majewski was in such high demand in her vintage shop on a recent Saturday afternoon that a store employee threw up her hands when yet another visitor came in to chat. Everyone wanted to talk to the mayor about the big political news.
“In many ways, Hamtramck is a microcosm of the fears gripping parts of the country since the Islamic State’s attacks on Paris: The influx of Muslims here has profoundly unsettled some residents of the town long known for its love of dancing, beer, paczki pastries and the pope.”
Earlier this month, the blue-collar city that has been home to Polish Catholic immigrants and their descendents for more than a century became what demographers think is the first jurisdiction in the nation to elect amajority-Muslim council.
It’s the second tipping for Hamtramck (pronounced Ham-tram-ik), which in 2013 earned the distinction becoming of what appears to be the first majority-Muslim city in the United States following the arrival of thousands of immigrants from Yemen, Bangladesh and Bosnia over a decade.
“There’s definitely a strong feeling that Muslims are the other. It’s about culture, what kind of place Hamtramck will become. There’s definitely a fear, and to some degree, I share it.”
— Majewski, whose family emigrated from Poland in the early 20th century
In many ways, Hamtramck is a microcosm of the fears gripping parts of the country since the Islamic State’s attacks on Paris: The influx of Muslims here has profoundly unsettled some residents of the town long known for its love of dancing, beer, paczki pastries and the pope.
“It’s traumatic for them,” said Majewski, a dignified-looking woman in a brown velvet dress, her long, silvery hair wound in a loose bun.
“Business owners within 500 feet of one of Hamtramck’s four mosques can’t obtain a liquor license, she complained, a notable development in a place that flouted Prohibition-era laws by openly operating bars. The restrictions could thwart efforts to create an entertainment hub downtown.”
Around her at the Tekla Vintage store, mannequins showcased dresses, hats and jewelry from the mid-20th century, and customers fingered handbags and gawked at the antique dolls that line the store, which sits across the street from Srodek’s Quality Sausage and the Polish Art Center on Joseph Campau Avenue, the town’s main drag.
“I don’t know why people keep putting religion into politics. When we asked for votes, we didn’t ask what their religion was.”
— Almasmari, who received the highest percentage of votes(22 percent) of any candidate
Majewski, whose family emigrated from Poland in the early 20th century, admitted to a few concerns of her own. Business owners within 500 feet of one of Hamtramck’s four mosques can’t obtain a liquor license, she complained, a notable development in a place that flouted Prohibition-era laws by openly operating bars. The restrictions could thwart efforts to create an entertainment hub downtown, said the pro-commerce mayor.
And while Majewski advocated to allow mosques to issue calls to prayer, she understands why some longtime residents are struggling to adjust to the sound that echos through the city’s streets five times each day. Read the rest of this entry »
DETROIT – Another robbery victim fights back after he’s targeted at a Detroit bus stop. The 23-year-old had officially become a Concealed Pistol License holder a couple of weeks ago and after what happened Sunday night – it was just in time.
Tremain, who doesn’t want to be identified because his family fears retaliation, says his brother had just finished work and was waiting for the bus at Schaefer and West Outer Drive on the west side when three teens confronted him.
One pulled out a gun and demanded his money.
“They threatened him and told him if he moved they were going to blow him which is a term for I’m going to kill or shoot you if you move,” Tremaine said. “And that’s what ended up happening.”
One of the suspects reached into the victim’s pocket and stole $220. The trio became excited about the money they just nabbed and became distracted – at that moment the CPL holder pulled out his gun and fired.
He hit the16-year-old in the chest and the 17-year-old in the leg. The 19-year-old took off running. Read the rest of this entry »
One can only wonder why the president continues to overlook the American businessmen and women who build the healthy economy that enables workers to find jobs and careers.
Andy Puzder writes: In his remarks at a White House event last week called the Summit on Worker Voice, President Obama said that people who work hard “should be able to get ahead” but went on to acknowledge that workers are “seeing their wages and their incomes flatlining.”
“Here’s the reality: Wages and incomes for workers are stagnant because there aren’t enough jobs…When the job market is strong and businesses must compete for employees, wages and benefits improve. The solution, then, is more jobs. This isn’t rocket science.”
The reason, according to Mr. Obama, is dwindling union membership. “Union membership today is as low as it’s been in about 80 years, since the ’30s,” he said. “And I believe that when folks attack unions, they’re attacking the middle class.” Thus he recommends “making it easier, not harder, for folks join a union.”
“Businesses create jobs; labor unions do not. To the contrary, labor unions often discourage businesses from creating jobs, particularly entry-level ones, by increasing the cost of labor without increasing its value.”
Here’s the reality: Wages and incomes for workers are stagnant because there aren’t enough jobs. It’s a matter of supply and demand. When jobs are scarce and people are unemployed, wages and benefits decline. When the job market is strong and businesses must compete for employees, wages and benefits improve. The solution, then, is more jobs. This isn’t rocket science. One can only wonder why the president continues to overlook the American businessmen and women who build the healthy economy that enables workers to find jobs and careers.
Businesses create jobs; labor unions do not. To the contrary, labor unions often discourage businesses from creating jobs, particularly entry-level ones, by increasing the cost of labor without increasing its value. Even if labor unions could magically lift wages for those lucky enough to have a job in this economy, what about the unemployed?
In September the labor-force participation rate—the percentage of Americans employed or actively looking for work—continued its decline under Mr. Obama, hitting 62.4%, a low last seen 38 years ago during the Carter administration. Read the rest of this entry »
OH YES SHE DID: Woman Lures 11-Year-Old Boy on Xbox; Sends Explicit Photos, Gives Boy Clothes, Debit Cards, Jewelry as GiftsPosted: August 3, 2015
‘During the course of playing video games together online, Jessica Carlton and the boy developed a relationship that grew to involve sexually explicit text messages and phone conversations, then the exchange of sexually explicit photographs’
A Michigan woman is accused of having an inappropriate relationship with an 11-year-old boy for more than a year after meeting him on Xbox Live.
“During the course of playing video games together online, Carlton and the boy developed a relationship that grew to involve sexually explicit text messages and phone conversations, then the exchange of sexually explicit photographs.”
In March 2015, the Union County Prosecutor’s Office in New Jersey received a referral from a municipal police department that Jessica Carlton, 44, had been communicating with the young victim, who at that point was 13-year-old, according to a news release.
“It’s extremely important for parents to understand that during the course of doing something that certainly might seem harmless — playing a video game online — their children could easily wind up meeting adults with dark intentions.”
An investigation revealed that Carlton first contacted the victim via Xbox Live, an online multiplayer gaming system, sometime in May 2013, Union County Assistant Prosecutor Colleen Ruppert said.
“During the course of playing video games together online, Carlton and the boy developed a relationship that grew to involve sexually explicit text messages and phone conversations, then the exchange of sexually explicit photographs,” the document states.
Carlton allegedly traveled from Michigan to New Jersey in December 2014 to bring the boy gifts and to meet him in person, Ruppert said. Read the rest of this entry »
Rule, who went to work briefly at the Seattle Police Department when she was 21, began writing for magazines like ‘True Detective‘ in 1969. She has published more than 1,400 articles, mostly on criminal cases.
Scott Thompson, a spokesman for CHI Franciscan Health, said Rule died at Highline Medical Center at 10:30 p.m. Sunday. Rule’s daughter, Leslie
Rule, said on Facebook that her mother had many health issues, including congestive heart failure.
“Rest in peace to our beloved true crime author and former Seattle police officer, Ann Rule.”
— Rule’s publisher, Simon & Schuster
Rule passed peacefully and was able to see all of her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren before she died.
Rule’s first book, “The Stranger Beside Me,” profiled Bundy, whom Ann Rule got to know while sharing the late shift at a Seattle suicide hotline.
“A lot of writers in her genre focused on the predators. That’s what made her special. She had a great empathy for the victims.”
— Rule’s daughter Leslie
“Rest in peace to our beloved true crime author and former Seattle police officer, Ann Rule,” Rule’s publisher, Simon & Schuster, Tweeted.
Rule, who went to work briefly at the Seattle Police Department when she was 21, began writing for magazines like “True Detective” in 1969. A biography on her author website says she has published more than 1,400 articles, mostly on criminal cases.
Rule has written more than 30 best-selling true crime novels, chronicling some of the most heinous murders. Read the rest of this entry »
A body found near the Ohio State University campus today has been identified as that of Kosta Karageorge, the OSU athlete who has been missing since Wednesday, police said.
Police and volunteers in Columbus have been searching for Karageorge, an OSU wrestler and football player who has not been seen since he left his apartment at 2 a.m. Wednesday.
More to come…
TRIGGER WARNING! University of Michigan Student Writer Suspended by Campus Newspaper for Satirical ColumnPosted: November 25, 2014
The column was offensive to progressives so obviously, the student needed to be punished.
Read it below, courtesy of the College Fix.
Read the ‘hostile’ column that got student writer suspended by campus newspaper
Editor’s note: Below is a satirical column penned by University of Michigan student Omar Mahmood, who writes for both the mainstream campus newspaper The Michigan Daily and the conservative independent publication the Michigan Review. Or at least he did.
After his column was published last week, Mahmood tells The College Fix: “I received a call from the editorial editor [of the Daily] telling me that I had created a ‘hostile environment’ among the editorial staff and that someone had felt threatened because of what I had written … The issue had been taken to the editor in chief who procured a bylaw by which I was given an ultimatum to leave the Review or leave the Daily within a week. I was not allowed to know the name of the offended individuals.” He added the newspaper’s leaders are “forcing me to write a letter of apology as a condition for staying on the Daily” and suspended his regular column in the Daily.
Mahmood has written for both the Review and the Daily concurrently for this fall semester, but after this controversial column was published the Daily’s editors decided “Mr. Mahmood’s involvement with the Michigan Review presents a conflict of interest. Our bylaws say that once a determination is made that a conflict of interest exists, the person in question will have one week to resign from either the Daily or the organization causing the conflict of interest,” according to a statement from the Daily to The College Fix.
Without further ado, we present to you “Do The Left Thing” by Omar Mahmood:
TRIGGER WARNING! Read the rest of this entry »
[VIDEO] ‘The Wizard of Oz’: Ohio State University Marching Band Sept. 27, 2014 Halftime Show vs. Michigan Marching Band Nov. 2010 Halftime ShowPosted: October 2, 2014
Ohio State’s marching band performs during the Sept. 27 Buckeyes game versus Cincinnati. Theme: The Wizard of Oz
The Michigan Marching Band performs:
“The Wizard of Oz”
Michigan v. Illinois Game
h/t Guy Benson, Hot Air
Well Frickity Freakin’ Frack: ‘Environmentally-Friendly’ Democratic Senate Candidate Gary Peters Invests In Fracking And CoalPosted: September 16, 2014
“Peters refused to sell his stock in the company, saying, ‘It has nothing to do with the Detroit situation’.”
Peters has fashioned himself as an environmentalist in his 2014 Senate campaign against Republican Terri Lynn Land. The League of Conservation Voters Action Fund endorsed Peters, calling him “a true leader fighting for a more sustainable future for Michigan and our nation by advocating for common sense solutions to help reduce our dependence on dirty fossil fuels and promote clean energy jobs.”
Peters has recently come under fire for owning $19,000 in stock in the French company Total S.A., which produces the petcoke substance that contaminates the area around the Detroit River with a major buildup. Peters refused to sell his stock in the company, saying, “It has nothing to do with the Detroit situation.” Read the rest of this entry »
Charles Krauthammer said the US Supreme Court’s 6-2 ruling on Tuesday that a lower court does not have the authority to set aside the law that bans the use of racial criteria in college admissions shows the court wants to preserve citizen’s rights to decide such things democratically.
“We leave the decision of affirmative action up to the people, which is exactly the way you want to do it in a diverse democracy with a troubled history.”
“The court said… ‘we’re not going to have nine rogues decide that this cannot be implemented.’ But what it implied was that it would allow people in a democracy to decide that,” he said.
Robby Soave reports: More troubling details have emerged in the case of a libertarian student club’s lawsuit against against the University of Michigan: Not only did UM administrators refuse to give the group funding for an anti-affirmative action event, but they also gave liberal students funding for a pro-affirmative action event just days before.
UM collects mandatory fees from students in order to distribute money to student groups for events and speaker fees–about $300,000 each year. However, administrators claim to have a blanket policy against using the money for political or religious events. On this basis, they denied the Young Americans for Liberty its request for $1,000 to cover the cost of bringing anti-affirmative action activist Jennifer Gratz to campus.
The Daily Caller previously reported on YAL’s lawsuit, which claims that the university provided funds to other political and even religious groups as recently as 2010.
Drew Philp writes: After college, as my friends left Michigan for better opportunities, I was determined to help fix this broken, chaotic city by building my own home in the middle of it. I was 23 years old.
My first job out of college was working for a construction company in Detroit.
“We’re an all-black company and I need a clean-cut white boy,” my boss told me over drinks in a downtown bar when he hired me. “Customers in the suburbs don’t want to hire a black man.”
When a service call would come in, we would ask, “Does he sound white or black?” If it was the former, I would bid the job. If the latter, my boss would. Detroit is one of the most segregated metro areas in the nation, and for the first time I was getting what it felt like to be on the other side of that line. In contrast to the abstract verbal yoga students at the University of Michigan would perform when speaking about race, this was refreshing. And terrifying. I couldn’t hide behind fancy words any longer.
at the DC Auto Show. The subject he chose for his first full length documentary, is the cronyism that he believes brought down Detroit. In the documentary, he examines why Detroit failed and what rest of the country needs to do and avoid Detroit’s fate.
Here’s the trailer:
The website for Bankrupt is here. It will be freely available on YouTube after the premiere.
A teen playing the “Knockout Game” in Lansing, Michigan unwittingly targeted a concealed carry permit holder and was shot twice. He survived and is now in jail.
AWR Hawkins writes: As Breitbart News previously reported, the “Knockout Game” thrives in areas where victims are unarmed. In the “game,” teens approach a stranger on the sidewalk or in an alley and punch the stranger in an attempt to knock him or her out. A punch that results in a knockout scores one point.
WILX in Lansing reported that teenager Marvell Weaver, who is black, tried to knock out a father who was standing at a bus stop waiting for his daughter to arrive. Instead of simply punching the father, Weaver tried a variation on the “game” by trying to taze the man. The taser malfunctioned, and the father pulled a .40 cal handgun and shot the teenager twice.
Robby Soave reports: Proponents of race-based admissions had a rough time during oral arguments at the Supreme Court this week, as both the conservative and liberal wings of the court humiliated an attorney for the Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action for her faulty reasoning.
Associate Justice Antonin Scalia immediately interrupted her.
“My goodness, I thought we’ve — we’ve held that the Fourteenth Amendment protects all races,” he said.
George F. Will writes: The marble friezes above the Supreme Court chamber depict 18 great lawgivers, including Moses, Solomon, King John and William Blackstone. Come Tuesday, as the bemused — or so one hopes — justices listen to oral arguments in a case from Michigan, they might wonder why Lewis Carroll is not included. He would have relished the Alice-in-Wonderland argument the justices will hear, which is as follows.
Although the U.S. Constitution’s 14th Amendment says “No state shall . . . deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws,” the following provision of Michigan’s Constitution violates the equal-protection guarantee: No public university, college or school district may “discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting.”
Yes, in Tuesday’s Through-the-Looking- Glass moment, the court will be urged to declare that Michigan’s ban on unequal treatment violates the U.S. Constitution’s equal-protection clause. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit —divided 8 to 7, with five dissents — has said just that, citing what is called the political-restructuring doctrine. Read the rest of this entry »
…at Masonic Lodge after finding women dancing naked on stage and men filming sex acts
Shocking: Police sources told WWMT-TV that officers found two people having sex and naked women dancing on stage at the Masonic Lodge
Police in Michigan have broken up a shocking ‘drug-fueled orgy’ being hosted at a secretive Masonic Lodge – and this wasn’t the first time it’s happened, authorities warn.
Officers were called to the prominent building in downtown Battle Creek, Michigan – which sits across a park from police headquarters – about 2.15am Sunday. They found five women dancing on stage naked.
They also reportedly discovered a couple having sex in the lodge and several men standing around filming the action.
I’ve been told that some readers of my Washington Examiner columnon city bankruptcies have interpreted it as a vindication of Detroit’s public employee unions and the contracts they got the city government to agree to. I didn’t intend to make that point and I don’t think I did. What I did point out is that the average pension of retired Detroit workers is relatively low, $19,000, far lower than the lavish pensions agreed to by the city governments of Stockton and San Bernardino, California. But the burden on Detroit’s city government imposed by those union contracts proved to be more than the city can bear. The unions hurt Detroit but crime killed it.
Detroit’s huge population loss (see the column for the numbers) was a response to the city’s high rates of violent crime and the inability or unwillingness of city government to reduce them drastically over the years. White flight was followed by black flight; those remaining tend to have very low incomes and property values have fallen to zero in many parts of the city. With such a dwindling tax base, it’s very difficult or impossible to afford even modest pensions for former city employees who were needed when the city was much larger. You can raise tax rates, but Detroit already has the highest income and property tax rates in Michigan, and the Detroit News, in a feat of good local coverage, found that taxes were not paid in 2011 on 47% of the properties in the city. And of course superhigh tax rates tend to drive even more people away and deter others from coming in.
It took only six decades of “progressive” policies to bring a great city to its knees.
By the time Detroit declared bankruptcy, Americans were so inured to the throbbing dirge of Motown’s Greatest Hits — 40 percent of its streetlamps don’t work; 210 of its 317 public parks have been permanently closed; it takes an hour for police to respond to a 9-1-1 call; only a third of its ambulances are driveable; one-third of the city has been abandoned; the local realtor offers houses on sale for a buck and still finds no takers; etc., etc. — Americans were so inured that the formal confirmation of a great city’s downfall was greeted with little more than a fatalistic shrug.
But it shouldn’t be. To achieve this level of devastation, you usually have to be invaded by a foreign power. In the War of 1812, when Detroit was taken by a remarkably small number of British troops without a shot being fired, Michigan’s Governor Hull was said to have been panicked into surrender after drinking heavily. Two centuries later, after an almighty 50-year bender, the city surrendered to itself. The tunnel from Windsor, Ontario, to Detroit, Michigan, is now a border between the First World and the Third World — or, if you prefer, the developed world and the post-developed world. To any American time-transported from the mid 20th century, the city’s implosion would be literally incredible: Were he to compare photographs of today’s Hiroshima with today’s Detroit, he would assume Japan won the Second World War after nuking Michigan. Detroit was the industrial powerhouse of America, the “arsenal of democracy,” and in 1960 the city with the highest per capita income in the land. Half a century on, Detroit’s population has fallen by two-thirds, and in terms of “per capita income,” many of the shrunken pool of capita have no income at all beyond EBT cards. The recent HBO series Hung recorded the adventures of a financially struggling Detroit school basketball coach forced to moonlight as a gigolo. It would be heartening to think the rest of the bloated public-sector work force, whose unsustainable pensions and benefits have brought Detroit to its present sorry state (and account for $9 billion of its $11 billion in unsecured loans), could be persuaded to follow its protagonist and branch out into the private sector, but this would probably be more gigolos than the market could bear, even allowing for an uptick in tourism from Windsor.
So, late on Friday, some genius jurist struck down the bankruptcy filing. Judge Rosemarie Aquilina declared Detroit’s bankruptcy “unconstitutional” because, according to the Detroit Free Press, “the Michigan Constitution prohibits actions that will lessen the pension benefits of public employees.” Which means that, in Michigan, reality is unconstitutional.
By: Rich Lowry
Via Politico December 12, 2012 11:29 PM EST
It was an ugly spectacle in Lansing the other day. A Republican lawmaker predicted blood on the streets. Profanity-spewing Chamber of Commerce goons went after union demonstrators. Anarcho-capitalists tried to push their way into a state building protected by the police.
The events chagrined editorialists around the country and Sunday show producers scrambled to book the most excruciatingly thoughtful guests they could find to hold forth at length about the importance of civility in politics.
(PHOTOS: Right-to-work protests in Michigan)
Of course, none of these things actually happened. The inflammatory rhetoric and small-time thuggery in Michigan were all the work of the left in response to a new right-to-work law and will surely pass all but unnoticed by the people who consider it their calling to tsk-tsk about “the tone” of political debate.
Civility is one of the most absurdly abused of our political values. It is always centrally important to our functioning as a democracy — right up until the time someone proposes crossing the unions. Then, it goes from “can’t we all get along?” to “nothing to see here.” Then, out come the Hitler signs, the accusations of dictatorship, the huge inflatable rats, the sit-ins, the threats and even the fists, and all anyone can think to say is, “Isn’t it a shame someone had to go and get the unions angry?”
State Rep. Douglas Geiss achieved his 15 minutes of notoriety by taking to the floor of the Michigan Legislature to warn “there will be blood” in response to the right-to-work law. He couched his prediction in terms of past corporate-union conflicts, namely the Battle of the Overpass in 1937, when Ford Motor Co. toughs assaulted United Auto Workers organizers.
But why would Michigan companies want to beat anyone up over a right-to-work law? Come to think of it, why would anyone consider a law allowing people hired at a unionized shop to decide freely whether or not to join a union an incitement to violence? No one is forced to join the Rotary Club, yet Rotarians peaceably go their way without any bloodshed.
Outside the Michigan Capitol, as the right-to-work law was debated, union protesters tore down the large organizational tent of the pro-right-to-work free-market group Americans for Prosperity and punched Fox News contributor Steven Crowder. This wasn’t exactly the Battle of the Overpass, when Walter Reuther got kicked down flights of stairs. Crowder sustained a chipped tooth and small cut on his forehead. But it was notable who was doing the punching.
At least it should have been…
Adding an unexpected dose of humor, and a welcome, long-overdue pledge of personal hygiene, two outspoken celebrities are including themselves in Axelrod’s courageous mustache-shaving wager.
Beloved television actor and outspoken socialist Ed Asner, and activist/actress Janeane Garofalo announced this week that they’re willing to part with treasured follicular adornments, in response to the shave challenge started by Obama senior advisor David Axelrod, who promised to shave his mustache of 40 years on national television if Obama loses Minnesota, Michigan or Pennsylvania on Election Day.
“I will come on Morning Joe and I will shave off my mustache of 40 years if we lose any of those three states”
“If Obama fails to win Minnesota, Michigan or Pennsylvania, I will go on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, on election day, and shave my legs”
“If Obama loses Minnesota, Michigan or Pennsylvania to Romney next Tuesday, I’ll go on the Johnny Carson show, and shave my ear hair”
We assume Ed meant to say the Jay Leno show. Stay tuned for more celebrities volunteering to join David Axelrod in shaving on national TV, in support of Barack Obama’s 2012 presidential campaign.
- A New Mustache Challenge (thepage.time.com)
- Axelrod wagers to shave mustache (politico.com)
- Axelrod Wagers To Shave Mustache After 40 Years (alan.com)
- Things Getting Hairy for Dems: Axelrod Wagers Mustache in Election Outcome (boiseweekly.com)
- DAVID AXELROD: ‘I Will Shave Off My Mustache’ If Obama Loses Michigan, Pennsylvania Or Minnesota (businessinsider.com)
- Axelrod to shave mustache if Obama loses Pa., Michigan or Minnesota (seattlepi.com)
- American Mustache Institute: Axelrod’s Mustache Wager ‘Incredibly Irresponsible’ (usnews.com)
- Axelrod Bets His Mustache (politicalwire.com)
- Axelrod: I’ll shave if Obama loses Pa., Mich. or Minn. (usatoday.com)