Saturday, April 16, 2011

SOS - Benton Harbor Is Now A Dictatorship

You can be sure that Whirlpool, and other corporations for that matter, are ruling Michigan, side by side with the new Guv, Rick Snyder, and cronies. This brief Michigan Messenger article provides a copy of the Benton Harbor EFM's Order, and a link to the recently passed state law giving him the power to issue it. Benton Harbor is a community which has been abandoned, kicked, beaten, and now suffocated. No population should have had to endure for decades what BH has.

There is an active discussion following this article online; we have included some selected comments.

Benton Harbor emergency manager strips power from all elected officials

By Todd A. Heywood 4/15/11

The Emergency Financial Manager of the city of Benton Harbor has issued an order striping all city boards and commissions of all their authority to take any action.

The order, signed Thursday, limits the actions available to such bodies to calling a meeting to order, approving the minutes of meetings and adjourning a meeting. The bodies are prohibited under the act from taking any other action without the express authority of the Emergency Financial Manager, Joseph Harris.

Actions such as Harris’ are explicitly allowed under a newly approved law which granted sweeping new powers to emergency financial managers. That legislation had drawn large protests, including attempts by some protesters to take over the state capitol building. The sit-in resulted in numerous arrests.

Harris’ move comes as Detroit Public Schools’ emergency financial manager Robert Bobb announced that he would use powers granted to him under the act to change union contracts.

Watch for more from Michigan Messenger’s Eartha Jane Melzer.

Comment: This is taxation without representation...oddly enough the rallying call of the original tea party..

Comment: The people who did this were operating under the power of the STATE constitution- not the US constitution. If they were using the US constitution they would not have had the power to do the legislation in the first place. And of course, one of the main things the tea partiers, who put these creatures in office, want is for state rights to take precedence over federal. They acted under state law and law they passed as the state legislature. So no, you do not get to throw the US constitution is the mix. This legislation that they passed and the subsequent actions they have undertaken is directly against the people of the community who put the local government in office. It is a very dangerous precedent for the governor and state legislators to undertake. People need to be standing up screaming over this abuse of power. It needs to be stopped post haste! [emphasis added]

Comment:'s unconscionable to be so willy nilly about grabbing power..and negating contracts at will.

Comment: ..This is illegal in every sense. Take it to the streets Michigan! You get it started and maybe we can head over from Wisconsin. This is a move to dismantle your resources and privatize your cities. STOP THEM!!!

Comment: Here we go folks…the elimination of local control and gutting of the public unions. Who wants to bet he contracts public services to his cronie friends. And it follows those contracted workers will be paid a low wage and pay for their own health care. Government for the rich and connected. At this point shouldn’t someone call the United Nations and complain that our country has been taken over by malicious corporate overlords! HELP…

Comment: ..we need to recall this guy [Snyder]. He apparently doesn't understand how things like government and democracy work.