Exec makes ‘tax cuts or else threat’: ‘Switch’ data center” in Steelcase pyramid is ‘Michigan’s to lose’ 

“It’s Michigan’s to lose,” Adam Kramer, senior vice president of strategy for Switch, said in a telephone interview with MLive and the Grand Rapids Press.

“Pass this and we come. Don’t pass this and we won’t,” said Kramer, one day before the state House Committee on Tax Policy was scheduled to conduct a hearing on three bills that would exempt data centers from paying state sales taxes, use taxes and property taxes.

Switch, which operates giant data centers in Las Vegas and near Reno, is hoping to create a “SuperNap” data center serving the eastern half of the United States in the former Steelcase Corporate Development Center, a 660,000-square-foot pyramid-shaped office building at 4400 60th St. SE.

Over the next 10 years, the data center is expected to employ 1,000 employees of Switch and their clients who will be on site to manage the $5 billion worth of data storage equipment the company plans to install on the site.

Source: $5B Switch data center in Steelcase pyramid is ‘Michigan’s to lose’ | MLive.com

NY Post:Those Evil Unions Control Parents | Diane Ravitch’s blog

Rupert Murdoch’s New York Post hates the teachers’ union. It hates the union so much that it blames the union for whatever it doesn’t like. Today, the Post says the massive opt out in New York was controlled by the union. Imagine that: the parents of 220,000 children take orders from the union. Wow, who knew that parents were so easily manipulated?

Source: NY Post:Those Evil Unions Control Parents | Diane Ravitch’s blog

Spotlight on the News: Meet Brandon Dillon, the new leader of Michigan Democrats – WXYZ.com

WXYZ Detroit – On Sunday, November 29, Spotlight on the News will showcase an in-depth interview with Brandon Dillon, the new Chairman of the Michigan Democratic Party.  What’s his vision for the future and what does he think of Governor Rick Snyder’s “relentless positive action” for Michigan?Spotlight on the News, now in its 50th season, is Michigan’s longest-running weekly news and public affairs television program.  It airs every Sunday at 10:00 a.m. on WXYZ-TV/Channel 7 in Detroit and 2:30 p.m. on 23.1 WKAR-HD in East Lansing and 6 p.m. on 23.2 WKAR World.

Source: Spotlight on the News: Meet Brandon Dillon, the new leader of Michigan Democrats – WXYZ.com

Charlie Chaplin’s “The Great Dictator’s Speech”

The Great Dictator’s Speech

I’m sorry, but I don’t want to be an emperor. That’s not my business. I don’t want to rule or conquer anyone. I should like to help everyone – if possible – Jew, Gentile – black man – white. We all want to help one another. Human beings are like that. We want to live by each other’s happiness – not by each other’s misery. We don’t want to hate and despise one another. In this world there is room for everyone. And the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone. The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way.

Greed has poisoned men’s souls, has barricaded the world with hate, has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed. We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical. Our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost.

The aeroplane and the radio have brought us closer together. The very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in men – cries out for universal brotherhood – for the unity of us all. Even now my voice is reaching millions throughout the world – millions of despairing men, women, and little children – victims of a system that makes men torture and imprison innocent people.

To those who can hear me, I say – do not despair. The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed – the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress. The hate of men will pass, and dictators die, and the power they took from the people will return to the people. And so long as men die, liberty will never perish. …..

Soldiers! don’t give yourselves to brutes – men who despise you – enslave you – who regiment your lives – tell you what to do – what to think and what to feel! Who drill you – diet you – treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder. Don’t give yourselves to these unnatural men – machine men with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines! You are not cattle! You are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts! You don’t hate! Only the unloved hate – the unloved and the unnatural! Soldiers! Don’t fight for slavery! Fight for liberty!

In the 17th Chapter of St Luke it is written: “the Kingdom of God is within man” – not one man nor a group of men, but in all men! In you! You, the people have the power – the power to create machines. The power to create happiness! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure.

Then – in the name of democracy – let us use that power – let us all unite. Let us fight for a new world – a decent world that will give men a chance to work – that will give youth a future and old age a security. By the promise of these things, brutes have risen to power. But they lie! They do not fulfil that promise. They never will!

Dictators free themselves but they enslave the people! Now let us fight to fulfil that promise! Let us fight to free the world – to do away with national barriers – to do away with greed, with hate and intolerance. Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where science and progress will lead to all men’s happiness. Soldiers! in the name of democracy, let us all unite!

Source: Charlie Chaplin : The Great Dictator’s Speech

Kipp Dawson Writes a Quick Note to President Obama | Diane Ravitch’s blog

Kipp Dawson is a veteran teacher and union activist in Pittsburgh (she also spent a decade as a coal miner, this is one tough lady).


She is as as brave and clear-eyed a thinker as I have met. She recently received a form letter from President Obama expressing his new views about testing, and she decided to share her reply. Personally, if I got the form letter, I would ask the President why he thinks it is up to him and Secretary Duncan to tell the public schools of the United States how much time to devote to testing. This is not part of the federal role. In fact, federal law clearly states that no officer of the federal government may seek to influence, direct or control curriculum or instruction. Anyone who works in a school will tell you that testing has a direct influence over curriculum and instruction, especially when high stakes are attached to it and the survival of the school depends on it. Neither the President nor the Secretary was ever a teacher or an administrator in a public school. Why do they think they should tell the nation’s schools how much testing is “just right”? They have neither the authority nor the knowledge to do so.


Kipp Dawson writes:

Source: Kipp Dawson Writes a Quick Note to President Obama | Diane Ravitch’s blog

Was Colorado Springs The Work Of A Terrorist? According To West Point It Was.

There is simply no getting away from the fact that the shooting at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs may mark a turning-point in the debate about gun violence.  And I don’t mean a positive turning-point either.  Because like it or not, the assault by Robert Lewis Dear was a classic example of domestic terrorism, in particular the type of terrorism directed at human targets that has been significantly increasing since a certain you-know-who started living at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in 2008.              If anyone wants to place the Colorado Springs episode in its proper context, I suggest you read a very detailed study and report on American terrorism that came out of the West Point Combating Terrorism Center in 2012. This report covers nearly 4,000 terrorist attacks on American soil between 1900 and 2012, of which more than 1,600 occurred after 2008.  The report only deals with Far Right terrorism, but that’s because Far left terrorism, which was endemic during the Viet Nam War, particularly after Nixon was elected, fell off and then basically disappeared following the Paris peace accords in 1973.  Far Right terrorism, on the other hand, has a long pedigree beginning with the Ku Klux Klan prior and particularly during Reconstruction, gaining strength again during the Civil Rights era and once again emerging in the recent Obama years.

Source: Was Colorado Springs The Work Of A Terrorist? According To West Point It Was.

Open Enrollment for health insurance coverage remains underway

from: Sara Kerrigan, United Way Worldwide <sara.kerrigan@uww.unitedway.org>
reply-to: sara.kerrigan@uww.unitedway.org
to: jeffreylsalisbury@gmail.com
date: Mon, Nov 30, 2015 at 2:22 PM
subject: United Way Advocacy Connection – November 2015
3 Tools That Make Open Enrollment Easy

Open Enrollment for health insurance coverage remains underway. In order to have health care coverage starting January 1, you must pick your plan and pay the first month’s premium by December 15, 2015. We understand that finding and choosing a plan that’s best for you and your family can feel pretty complicated. Fortunately, our partners at Enroll America developed three easy tools to help you find a quality, affordable plan that’s best for you!
The Get Covered Connector

finds real-life, in-person assistance near you! There are thousands of trained professionals and volunteers standing by to help you figure out your options, so the Connector

is a great way to tap into that expertise.

Did you know that you could be eligible for free or very inexpensive coverage? The Get Covered Calculator

helps determine how much financial assistance you could get right away to afford your health care coverage.

And the Get Covered Plan Explorer

helps you shop around for plans that you can afford that also include your favorite doctors. It’s a great way to compare and contrast what’s available near you and for how much.

Finding help

, finding financial assistance

, and finding a plan

is easier than ever! And be sure to pick your plan by December 15 so you have coverage starting with the beginning of the new year!

An Important And Compelling New Book About Gun Violence.

Gun Violence and Mental Illness is the most important book on gun violence published since Sandy Hook.  And what makes itimportant

is not only the eminence and research capability of the contributors, but the breadth of the discussions about gun violence itself.  In a sense, the title of the book is somewhat misleading, because the work goes far beyond mental issues.  In fact, this superb collection touches on every aspect of gun violence – causes, mitigations, public policies – even though the authors and editors often define the issue in mental illness and mental health terms. Source: An Important And Compelling New Book About Gun Violence.

Who Funds Jeb Bush’s Education Foundation?

Diane Ravitch writes…

It is common knowledge that Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Educational Excellence supports charters, vouchers, and digital learning. When he announced his run for the GOP nomination, he stepped down and brought in Condaleeza Rice to lead FEE. Who provided the money to showcase Bush’s education platform? Bush released his list of donors from 2007-14. “WASHINGTON (AP) — Big-time donors to a nonprofit educational group founded by Jeb Bush, disclosed for the first time Wednesday, highlight the intersection between Bush’s roles in the worlds of business, policy and politics years before he began running for president…. Source: Who Funds Jeb Bush’s Education Foundation?

Paula Poundstone: Break Your Child’s Addiction to Blinking Screens

“Paula Poundstone, comedian, has advice for parents: break your children’s addiction to electronic devices. Is she right or wrong? Who made the decision that all the tests had to be taken online? This leads to a need to teach keyboarding schools in kindergarten or earlier. Shouldn’t children spend time making things, not just consuming what someone else has made? Shouldn’t they have time to use their own imagination, not just imbibe the products of someone else’s imagination?” – Dr. Diane Ravitch

Source: Paula Poundstone: Break Your Child’s Addiction to Blinking Screens