This column originally appeared in The Detroit News on April 21, 2016.
Ten years after the Michigan Legislature voted to establish the highly controversial Detroit Education Commission, an estimated 14,260 students found seats in their classrooms in the Detroit Public Schools, as the morning bell rang in the new school year.
How long the buildings stay open this fall depends on the latest DPS bailout proposals working their way through the state Legislature, as teachers face payless paydays as early as next month.Read more
Since Michigan passed its right-to-work law in 2012, unions have been labelling those that leave the union as “free riders.” But where unions see “free riders,” others see forced riders.Read more
Several weeks ago, our own Greg McNeilly wrote in the Detroit News about the effect corporate cronyism is having on the price Michiganders pay at the electric meter.
DTE and Consumers Energy last year raised rates on families by $364 million a year, and are back again with hundreds of millions more in planned rate hikes. At the same time, the monopoly energy providers have spent over $4 million pushing Senate Bill 437 – the Nofs-Nesbitt energy plan—in the state legislature trying to outlaw electric choice.
Not surprisingly, a couple former lawmakers came to the utilities defense, claiming calls of “corporate cronyism” are “just a distraction.”
In a recent letter to the Detroit News, former Michigan Senate Majority Leaders Randy Richardville and Ken Sikkema respond to our Detroit News Op-ed (McNeilly: Utilities Work to Stifle Energy Choice, Boost Rates). Richardville and Sikkema argue that our use of the term "cronyism" is "just a distraction" and "counterproductive."
Their response is dismissive of the facts.
Corporate cronyism is a term that describes a system where success in business depends on rigging the relationships between a company and government. Corporate welfare, special treatment, and onerous regulation of a businesses’ competition produce an unfair and unjust playing field where the well-connected succeed and the rest aren’t even given a chance.
One needn’t look far in Michigan to find examples of this kind of perverse and destructive relationship between government officials and big business — just take a gander at DTE and Consumers Energy.
James Pethokoukis from the American Enterprise Institute recently wrote a piece comparing life in America in 1915 with life today.
Here are some amazing facts to put the successes of free enterprise in perspective:Read more
Corporate cronyism is a term that describes a system where success in business depends on rigging the relationships between a company and government. Corporate welfare, special treatment, and onerous regulation of a businesses’ competition produce an unfair and unjust playing field where the well-connected succeed and the rest aren’t even given a chance.Read more
by Terri Reid, President
Michigan Freedom Fund
Re: The Jan. 29 Detroit News editorial “Lawmakers should get rid of ‘gag order’: Government officials and their lobbyists have had a lot to say in recent weeks about Senate Bill 571, legislation signed into law this month that prevents government bodies from spending tax dollars on campaign activities. It’s too bad not much of it has been true. Here’s the truth.Read more
Check out this week's important updates focused on economic and personal freedom in Michigan:
- Stand up to union activists abandoning Detroit’s kids
- Don’t Blame Lack of Money for Deplorable Conditions in Detroit Schools
- Rep. Glenn’s Prostate Cancer Announcement May Inspire Others to Get Checked by Doctors
- Colbeck: Next Battle will be over Electricity
by Greg McNeilly, chairman of the Michigan Freedom Fund
Callous. Premeditated. Disgraceful. Unacceptable.
There are a lot of words that could describe the recent and escalating series of teacher strikes in the city of Detroit, but one word might sum them up best.
Criminal. And if the adults in Detroit aren’t willing to stand up for kids, the adults in Lansing should.Read more