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U.S. Supreme Court upholds Michigan's ban on affirmative action

The U.S. Supreme court has decided to uphold Michigan's ban on affirmative action. Here is a a brief summery of the history behind the case. The court has made their opinions available here. Also, how states with affirmative action bans have fared.
posted by Shouraku on Apr 23, 2014 - 237 comments

Si quaeris peninsulam amoenam circumspice

A federal judge has overturned Michigan's ban on same sex marriage and adoption. (pdf). There is no stay in the ruling.
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Mar 21, 2014 - 82 comments

"'You aren't black on the inside' - childhood friends"

I, Too, Am Harvard. A photo campaign highlighting the faces and voices of black students at Harvard College. 63 students participated, sharing their experiences with ignorance and racism. "Our voices often go unheard on this campus, our experiences are devalued, our presence is questioned-- this project is our way of speaking back, of claiming this campus, of standing up to say: We are here. This place is ours. We, TOO, are Harvard." [more inside]
posted by zarq on Mar 5, 2014 - 38 comments

The Pareto of our Discontent

College football attracts a lot of rabid fans. Of late, college football (and football in general) has also attracted an increasing number of stats enthusiasts peddling increasingly obscure metrics to quantify success and failure. At MGoBlog, a popular Michigan fan blog, one intrepid poster has turned the statistics tools on the fanbase itself. A Season in Profanity details the usage of various swear words in open game threads. Among the relationships detailed are the usage of various colorful expressions by game, mood of the fan base by opponent, swearing efficiency, which coach(es) should be fired, and even the individual play outcomes that inspired the greatest amount of swearing. As it was kind of a rough season for the team, there was a substantial amount of data to comb through. [more inside]
posted by Existential Dread on Dec 17, 2013 - 13 comments

White Hurricane

100 years ago a storm on the Great Lakes sank dozens of ships I found it a riveting story. "It reads like the tale of the Titanic times a factor of at least a dozen. Freighters thought invulnerable to the weather cracked in two. Hundreds of sailors drowned. Sad farewell messages tucked inside glass bottles washed up on Lake Superior beaches. The “White Hurricane,” a cataclysmic storm which pounded Michigan 100 years ago this week, was quite simply the biggest, deadliest natural disaster ever to hit the Great Lakes. It’s also one of Michigan’s most epic tales. "
posted by leslies on Nov 9, 2013 - 20 comments

How Detroit Went Broke

The Free Press investigates the causes of the Detroit bankruptcy. From 13th checks to Kwame's gamble, the story of Detroit's bankruptcy is surprising and often counter-intuitive.
posted by klangklangston on Sep 15, 2013 - 61 comments

A Plant, a Perch, and a Prophylactic

Charlie LeDuff Canoes the Rouge River through Detroit. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan on Jul 7, 2013 - 18 comments

North Country Dreamland

Utilizing video locations including Isle Royale National Park, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Headlands Intl Dark Sky Park, North Country Trail, Hiawatha National Forest, Marquette Michigan, Copper Harbor and Eagle Harbor MI, Shawn Malone has created North Country Dreams, a time lapse video that explains why some of us will never leave Michigan. (I encourage you to watch this in full screen and HD)
posted by HuronBob on May 6, 2013 - 11 comments

Michigan's first legal same-sex marriage

Odawa Indian tribe hosts Michigan's first legal same-sex marriage (and the third among all US Native nations). It was a historic day. Not just for them and not just for the tribe that [Tim] LaCroix belongs to, but for Michigan too. News story from UpNorthLive.
posted by NoMich on Mar 15, 2013 - 10 comments

Biketown, USA

What happened to a place in Michigan when cars were banned for 115 years?
posted by mathowie on Mar 14, 2013 - 82 comments

Ask him about his chickens

Aaron Peterson is a nature photographer and writer based near Lake Superior on Michigan's Upper Peninsula. He takes many photographs of bike trips, like this ice biking series.
The rider, Ryan Labar, chimed in with a technical comment.
More of Aaron's galleries.
posted by growabrain on Jan 18, 2013 - 5 comments

Hey what's that down there?

'Meet Sluggo – a green semi-subterranean inhabitant of Ann Arbor, Michigan. This strange little creature first appeared back in 2008 on a sidewalk, and since then started peaking out of walls cracks, chilling on ledges or doing his daily routines all over the town. Turns out, it was drawn by a local graphic artist David Zinn.'
posted by Potomac Avenue on Jan 8, 2013 - 21 comments

Collective bargaining in Michigan?

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed into law two bills that will "will among other things, bar both public and private sector workers from being required to pay fees as a condition of their employment." [SLNYT] [more inside]
posted by dd42 on Dec 11, 2012 - 235 comments

The Times They Are a-Changin'

In 1962, fifty years ago this month, striking union printers shut down four New York City newspapers in resistance to computerized, automated technologies that were being introduced in newsrooms across the country. Five other area papers shut down voluntarily. The strike lasted 114 days and sounded the death knell for four newspapers. For a brief period, New York was a laboratory that demonstrated what can happen when newspapers vanish. Today, new technology is again shaking American newspapers as the Internet drains away more and more advertising revenue. Is this The Long Good Bye? [more inside]
posted by zarq on Nov 30, 2012 - 25 comments

The Loss of One Classy Republican

Helen Wallbank Milliken, former Michigan First Lady and strong supporter of women's rights, passed away late yesterday. Married to William Milliken, Republican governor of Michigan from 1969 to 1983, Helen Milliken was both a strong proponent of both the ERA and of abortion rights. [more inside]
posted by still_wears_a_hat on Nov 17, 2012 - 18 comments

Walk and Talk the Vote

What happens when a former star of the West Wing's sister decides to run for the Supreme Court of the State of Michigan? This.
posted by timsteil on Sep 20, 2012 - 76 comments

Those Dam Beavers!

In December of 1997, a Michigan man received a letter from the Department of Environmental Quality informing him that he was prohibited from the 'Construction and maintenance of two wood debris dams across the outlet stream of Spring Pond. A permit must be issued prior to the start of this type of activity. A review of the Department's files show that no permits have been issued. .... The Department has been informed that one or both of the dams partially failed during a recent rain event, causing debris dams and flooding at downstream locations. We find that dams of this nature are inherently hazardous and cannot be permitted. The Department therefore orders you to cease and desist all unauthorized activities at this location, and to restore the stream to a free-flow condition by removing all wood and brush forming the dams from the strewn channel.' He replied: 'Regarding Your Dam Complaint.' [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Aug 9, 2012 - 38 comments

Resurget cineribus

Historic Detroit - some urban architectural history in a nice online format. [more inside]
posted by Miko on Jul 11, 2012 - 6 comments

Louder Than Love: The Grande Ballroom

Louder Than Love: The Grande Ballroom Story. While not as famous as Bill Graham's Fillmore Theaters, from 1966 to 1970, Detroit's Grande Ballroom hosted national acts such as Cream, The Who, Led Zeppelin, The Grateful Dead, Frank Zappa, Jeff Beck, and Pink Floyd. The brainchild of Russ Gibb, with help from activist John Sinclair, the Grande provided a stage for local bands like The MC5, SRC, The Rationals, The Amboy Dukes, The Frost and the The Stooges. The Grande had it's own psychedelic poster artists Gary Grimshaw and Carl Lundgren. Leni Sinclair took pictures. Local boys from the Grande that went on to national prominence included The Bob Seger System, Alice Cooper, and Grand Funk Railroad. [more inside]
posted by marxchivist on Jun 20, 2012 - 8 comments

Book Burning Party to Save a Library

Award winning campaign saved the Troy, Michigan Library. The library needed to pass a .7% tax increase to stay open. Anti-tax crusaders (*cough* Tea Partiers *cough*) took over the conversation to get it voted down. So, faced with dwindling prospects a group supporting the library worked with an advertising agency to develop a provocative campaign to get the tax increase passed. [more inside]
posted by Salmonberry on Jun 15, 2012 - 144 comments

If they are going to legislate my anatomy, I see no reason why I cannot mention it.

"And finally, Mr. Speaker, I'm flattered that you're all so interested my vagina, but 'no' means 'no.'" After this pointed observation, Michigan Representative Lisa Brown (D) was subsequently barred from speaking on a bill about the retirement of school employees. Twitter responds. Meanwhile, many remember a similar kerfuffle over the word "uterus" in Florida last May.
posted by emjaybee on Jun 14, 2012 - 241 comments

Not so pure Michigan

Not So Pure Michigan (youtube), a play on Michigan's "Pure Michigan" tourism campaign. (For more on Michigan's troubles with its neighbors see Mitten-gate.)
posted by found missing on May 16, 2012 - 31 comments

Ripped from the headlines, er, graphic novel covers.

Michigan superhero "BeeSting" arrested.
posted by tivalasvegas on Apr 28, 2012 - 74 comments

Obscura Day, 2012

Atlas Obscura (seen 'round here before) has organized its third annual Obscura Day for April 28. It's "an international celebration of unusual places," from the Fairy Doors of Ann Arbor, Michigan and the Particle Accelerator at John E. Edwards Accelerator Laboratory in Athens, Ohio, to a tour of the Secrets & Oddities of the National Museum in Edinburgh, Scotland and an Expedition to the 1,553 Stone-Carved Monks of Nihon-ji in the city of Kyonan, Chiba Prefecture, Japan.
posted by filthy light thief on Apr 25, 2012 - 3 comments

They Shoot Pigs, Don't They?

Feral swine (aka feral hogs, wild pigs) incur an estimated $1 billion (US) in property damage and control costs, according to the USDA (.pdf). They rip up crops, root up native plans, injure and kill other wildlife and carry disease. As of April 1, 2012, Michigan's Department of Natural Resources has outlawed them, permitting "any licensed hunter [to] shoot feral swine on sight." The relevant Invasive Species Order (.pdf), and its convoluted implementation, has a number of hog farmers up in arms over the state's new ability to slaughter farm-raised pigs that meet the state DNR's description of "feral swine." [more inside]
posted by MonkeyToes on Apr 4, 2012 - 44 comments

"Before we let you take over our city we will burn it down first,"

Emotions ran high (video) as city and state leaders met to work out a deal to address Detroit's looming budget crisis. The threat of state imposition of an emergency financial manager has some residents fearful of the ulterior motives of state officials: [more inside]
posted by ferdinand.bardamu on Mar 27, 2012 - 26 comments

"The Legacy Of Wes Leonard"

You may have heard about the Michigan high schooler who made a game-winning basket and then died. Here's the rest of the story. [Alternative link]
posted by mudpuppie on Feb 15, 2012 - 24 comments

By no means just another struggling Michigan town.

Now that the factories are closed, it’s tee time in Benton Harbor (SLNYT, previously).
posted by xowie on Dec 15, 2011 - 8 comments

Bully as Victim

A Michigander questions why an anti-bullying legislation became instead a bully protection tool. "On Wednesday, the Republican-controlled state senate passed an anti-bullying bill that manages to protect school bullies instead of those they victimize. It accomplishes this impressive feat by allowing students, teachers, and other school employees to claim that 'a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction' justifies their harassment." [more inside]
posted by TheGoodBlood on Nov 7, 2011 - 137 comments

Burton Holmes, Inventor of the Travelogue

The Burton Holmes Archive has information about Burton Holmes, the travel writer who became the first person to make filmic travelogues. More importantly, they also have a lot of film clips by Holmes and his associate, André de la Varre, who was also a great travelogue maker himself. Watching these clips is not quite time travel, but it is as close as we can get. Take a look at Reykjavík, Iceland, in 1926, Lake Michigan in 20s, Cairo in 1932 and the 1955 Rio de Janeiro carnival. The later films have sound and narration, but I prefer the silent ones. [Burton Holmes previously, André de la Varre previously, and the Travel Film Archive, which runs Burton Holmes site, previously]
posted by Kattullus on Oct 26, 2011 - 5 comments

Aberrican Me - Ross Capicchioni

Ross Capicchioni's story - Parts 1 and 2 - contains violent descriptions
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 on Oct 6, 2011 - 26 comments

Don't get me wrong, yeah I think you're alright; But that won't keep me warm in the middle of the night

Gender Differences and Casual Sex: The New Research [more inside]
posted by Orange Pamplemousse on Oct 6, 2011 - 144 comments

in such manner as the legislature thereof may direct

"Change Proposed for State's Electoral Vote Process." Gov. Tom Corbett and state Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi are proposing that Pennsylvania divide up its Electoral College votes according to which candidates carried each Congressional district, plus two votes for the statewide winner. Talking Points Memo says that under the proposed plan Obama would have received only 11 of the state's 20 electors in 2008; Dave Weigel and Nick Baumann say gerrymandering could mean that in 2012 Obama could actually wind up with a minority of the state's electors even if he carries the state. GOP-led legislatures in other states, such as Wisconsin and Michigan, could make similar moves. But could this be a bridge too far for some members of the state's GOP caucus? [more inside]
posted by gerryblog on Sep 14, 2011 - 128 comments

It's a new dawn, it's a new day, it's a new life, for lipdubbing

"Feeling Good" lipdub, by a cast of senior citizens (via MetaChat) [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jul 15, 2011 - 35 comments

Grand Rapids to Newsweek: We A'int Dying!

This past January Newsweek magazine deemed Grand Rapids, Michigan as one of the top 10 'dying cities' in the United States. Mayor George Heartwell refuted the 'dying city' label in letter [PDF] to Newsweek editor Tina Brown. The designation inspired the citizens of the city to raise $40,000 and pull together to create a lip-dub to Don McLean's 'American Pie.'
posted by ericb on May 27, 2011 - 88 comments

Walking from the desert to the Great Lakes.

Walking Home: stories from the desert to the Great Lakes. Laura Milkins is walking home. Home is Grand Rapids, Michigan. Laura lives in Tucson, Arizona. That's 2,000 miles (3,219 km), or about 4,473,976 steps. Right now she's in the shoulder of the road somewhere around Holbrook, Arizona. She has a pack on her back, a webcam streaming 24 hours strapped to a sun visor on her head, and hopefully, a place to stay tonight. You can follow her every step of the way, by watching live video broadcast from her hat. Or walk with her. [more inside]
posted by Tufa on May 25, 2011 - 26 comments

Making Ebenezer Scrooge look like an ok guy

Children in foster care in Michigan get an allowance for clothing. Republican State Senator Bruce Caswell wants to limit their clothing purchases to thrift stores only.
posted by helloknitty on Apr 24, 2011 - 241 comments

Democracy revoked.

Benton Harbor's elected officials have been unelected by the Governor of Michigan. [more inside]
posted by tomswift on Apr 16, 2011 - 73 comments

Koch Industries looking north.

There's been a lot of talk about Koch lately, mostly in regard to Wisconsin and Michigan. Now the billionaire Tea Party financiers have turned their eyes to Canada, and are set to lobby the Alberta government. Previously.
posted by Stagger Lee on Mar 24, 2011 - 85 comments

Duke vs Michigan

On Sunday, ESPN aired an acclaimed documentary about the University of Michigan's Fab Five. In one segment the members of the Fab Five discuss their hatred of the Duke University basketball program, and Jalen Rose goes so far as to say that at the time he felt like Duke players were "Uncle Toms". Link goes to clip of relevant segment (1:24), after a short ad. Grant Hill, who played for Duke against the Fab Five, responded in today's New York Times. [more inside]
posted by auto-correct on Mar 16, 2011 - 88 comments

YouTube singer charged with felony

YouTube singer charged with felony
posted by morganannie on Feb 18, 2011 - 140 comments

We'll Marry Our Fortunes Together

In recession-hit Saginaw, MI, the initial setting of Simon and Garfunkel's "America", mural painter Eric Shantz has begun painting the lyrics to the song on abandoned buildings.
posted by l33tpolicywonk on Dec 19, 2010 - 41 comments

You're ALL getting mixtapes

Midwest label Suburban Sprawl puts out a CD of X-Mas music every winter. They've collected the last eight years of them here. Highlights include The High Strung, The Hard Lessons, and the common lament, "Santa Just Crashed Into My House and He's Drunk as Fuck."
posted by klangklangston on Dec 1, 2010 - 16 comments

Parachuting Into Michigan Stadium with the 101st Airborne Division

Sgt. Adam Sniffen from the 101st Airborne Division delivers the game ball via parachute before the Michigan vs. MSU game at Michigan Stadium on Oct. 9, 2010.
posted by dead cousin ted on Oct 14, 2010 - 68 comments

ArtPrize

ArtPrize is an open art contest based in Grand Rapids, MI. It is the largest art contest in the world. Last year's winner Ran Ortner went from not being able to pay his phone bill to receiving a $250,000 prize. Researchers are looking into the local economic impact. So far, 34,000 people have registered to vote.
posted by morganannie on Sep 29, 2010 - 19 comments

Michigan's Attorney General's Office: Keeping Our Freedoms Under Watch

An interview with Andrew Shirvell, the assistant Attorney General of the state of Michigan regarding Chris Armstrong, the first openly gay student president of the University of Michigan Student Assembly. Armstrong is currently the target of the blog Chris Armstrong Watch. He's labeled a racist elitist liar, a privileged pervert, and is accused of having a radical homosexual agenda. Facebook postings are used extensively as proof. The author of the blog? None other than the assistant Attorney General himself. [more inside]
posted by schroedinger on Sep 29, 2010 - 180 comments

Oil Spill in Celery City

Sometime Sunday evening, an oil pipeline burst over Talmadge Creek near Marshall, Michigan, spilling an estimated 840,000 gallons of oil into the Kalamazoo River. [more inside]
posted by Baby_Balrog on Jul 27, 2010 - 31 comments

You're Wrong! No, You're Wrong!

5 Lesser Known (Completely Ridiculous) American Civil Wars, via Cracked. [more inside]
posted by Miko on May 26, 2010 - 45 comments

Oral History of Gaming

On a snowy Valentine's Day weekend in Michigan Sid Meier creates a game in 48 hours called Escape from Zombie Hotel! He's there to judge a 48 hour game design contest at his alma mater, University of Michigan but decides to also work on a game alongside the student teams. He also talks about his career, focusing on his early days. This is the third installment of motherboard.tv's Oral History of Gaming series. The first profiles Ralph Baer, the inventor of the first home gaming console, and the second is about Eric Zimmerman, designer of Sissyfight. Sadly, the awesome-looking Escape from Zombie Hotel has note been released, but the oher games designed during the contest are available here. [via Rock Paper Shotgun]
posted by Kattullus on Apr 20, 2010 - 19 comments

words fail me

CK Prahalad, Paul and Ruth McCracken Distinguished University Professor of Corporate Strategy at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business in the University of Michigan passed away on 16th April 2010 after a brief illness. His core competency was strategic insight and vision and his legacy to the world, the concept of the Bottom of the Pyramid, which changed the way big business viewed the teeming, huddled poverty stricken masses of the former third world as micro-innovators, micro-producers and so, micro-consumers in their own right. Among others, his work inspired Ratan Tata as the Nano turned conventional wisdom of automobile manufacturing on its head and paved the way for Indian industry to focus on the high volume/low margin potential of their domestic market. In 2009, he was named the "world's most influential thinker" . Though not uncriticized for his theories on the Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, one can acknowledge his role in overcoming the "tyranny of dominant logic" that the poor should not simply be recipients of charity but demanding customers in challenging environments. RIP, sir. {previously, previously}
posted by infini on Apr 17, 2010 - 14 comments

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