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There's Been a Dictatorial Coup -- Koch Bros. Have a Bunch of Czars Running Cities Across Michigan

This is a national scandal, and few people have noticed.

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Is this America? It no longer will be if these social-engineering autocrats prevail. But, good news: Michiganders are in full rebellion! As always, though, battling the bastards is never easy, because... well, they're bastards. And they're very well-funded. And sneaky. Yet the people keep pushing, as we see in this chronicle of the 2012 Michigan Rebellion:

  • Feb. 29--A broad grassroots coalition (ranging from union workers to tea party members) that was organized under the umbrella of "Michigan Forward" filed more than enough citizen petitions to put the repeal of Snyder's EFM nonsense on the ballot for this November's election.
  • April 19--At the last minute, just before the repeal question would have been certified for the ballot by the state board of canvassers, a complaint by Citizens for Fiscal Responsibility is filed to stop certification. Reason? "The font size of the [petition's] heading" is claimed to be too small to comply with state law. Font size!
  • April 9-25--Legal jockeying takes place, and digging by journalists and coalition members reveals that (1) CFR is not a real group, but a creature of the Sterling Corporation, a GOP political consulting firm--same address, phone number, and staff; and (2) a Sterling partner, Jeff Timmer, was a chief executive of the Michigan Republican Party and now happens to be one of the four voting members of the state board of canvassers. There are widespread calls for Timmer to recuse himself from the board's petition decision, but the secretary of state (a Republican) says no one can force him to do that.
  • April 26--Decision day for the board. Timmer does not withdraw, so the board deadlocks two-to-two, which kills the repeal referendum.
  • June 18--Timmer resigns from the board.
  • June 29--Citizens coalition appeals the board's rejection to Michigan's Supreme Court.
  • Aug. 3--In a four-to-three decision, the court majority (including one Republican) rules that the font size does not disqualify the petition, so the board must put the repeal question on the ballot.

This victory means that American democracy literally will be up for a vote in Michigan on Nov. 6! The Republican and Koch political networks are going all out to win--and if they do, your state/city could well be next on their Berzerkistan anti-democracy agenda.

Jim Hightower is a national radio commentator, writer, public speaker, and author of the new book, "Swim Against the Current: Even a Dead Fish Can Go With the Flow." (Wiley, March 2008) He publishes the monthly "Hightower Lowdown," co-edited by Phillip Frazer.
 
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