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Michigan, a beautiful state of lakes, rivers, forests and all things nature. But, don't .....

......look at the human under belly. Social problems have existed in Michigan, as is with all states; but more and more of the ugly today.

Some Republican candidates think "lock, load and carry" is a good path for some workers at the polls.



  • We've met a pretty fair number of Michiganders, and they have been universally very nice and decent folks. We did a lot of European traveling with a fairly large group of them for a number of years. Trump has unfortunately been a very sad eye-opener with respect to the other half.
  • edited February 2022
    Old_Joe said:

    We've met a pretty fair number of Michiganders, and they have been universally very nice and decent folks. We did a lot of European traveling with a fairly large group of them for a number of years. Trump has unfortunately been a very sad eye-opener with respect to the other half.

    Me thinks the nasty type (here) don’t travel much. You’re extremely unlikely to meet them on a plane or at a broadway show, a museum or in Paris. @Catch22 or @rono may want to elaborate more. But my take is we are a real dichotomy. On one hand there’s a large highly educated populace of a more liberal democratic persuasion. They tend to live near larger cities. These folks can be very articulate and effective in making change for the good. (You might not find a more progressive population than in the Ann Arbor area, home to the U.of M.)

    But there’s a sizable segment (mostly away from large urban areas) that are hard right, somewhat militaristic in their societal interaction and often neither well educated or well off financially. Just my narrow (and overly simplistic) view. I could be wrong. But have lived in the state all my 75 years and in both urban and rural areas.

    @Catch - I think your article confuses the terms “poll watchers” and “poll workers.” There’s an important distinction.
  • Hi hank- yes, I think that you've nailed the situation pretty well. Your description of the type of people that we've met and traveled with is right on. Also, if I recall correctly, many of them were U of M alumni.
  • edited February 2022
    Thanks for wading thru that! I hasten to add (for benefit of others) that the lower case “d” in democratic was intentional, as it wasn’t a reference to political party, but rather a reference to more enlightened open-minded thinking as well as to adherence to democratic principles and process.

    I’m certain the Michiganders you encountered were equally impressed!
  • edited February 2022
    Well, they sort of adopted us as extended West-Coast "Michiganders". We had a great time with that bunch. We all left a wide trail of empty wine bottles across Europe and the Mediterranean. Some of the mornings were a little hazy.
  • I'm reluctant to write this here; and my last entry for this OT subject.

    @hank , you noted:
    I think your article confuses the terms “poll watchers” and “poll workers.” There’s an important distinction.
    The term watcher or worker is interchangeable, IMHO; to this subject, as related to the radical right folks. If "something" seems out of normal for them, take whatever action(s) are necessary to correct the situation.

    --- Radical Right Republicans in Michigan, and voting =


    1.) "Change the tide" = the majority of people outvote us (we, the minority, radical GOP)

    2.) "Show up armed" = if we can't win on merit, use violence

    These people are fascists. If they show up armed, they should be dealt with in the most stringent means, legally available.

    You'll likely be allowed access to this article.
    Michigan polling place rules

    Base summary: Those in the the original linked article, and their supporters; have no regard for democracy. They have been and remain in a civil war, where their way or the highway is the only solution.
  • edited February 2022
    “(Most) poll workers are part-time, temporary employees hired by local election officials to staff polling places during early voting and on Election Day. Polling places average about eight on-staff workers for the whole day.”

    “Poll watchers, also referred to as partisan citizen observers or poll challengers, represent political parties, candidates, or groups such as ballot issue committees at polling locations. Rules for poll watchers vary state to state. The use of poll watchers is primarily aimed at guarding a party or group’s chance at a fair election.

    State rules
    State statutes set out specific guidelines for who can be a poll watcher and what they are allowed to do. In general, poll watchers are required to be registered voters. While they can monitor how an election is administered, they cannot interfere with the voting process. Some states allow poll watchers to challenge an individual's eligibility to vote, but they must do this through official poll workers. Even if the right to vote is challenged in this manner, states often allow the use of a provisional ballot, to be counted later if the individual’s right to vote is verified.

    States have adopted different policies governing the behavior of poll watchers. For example, as of 2020, Pennsylvania required poll watchers to be registered in the county where they are watching. On September 17, 2020, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court upheld the law after Republican challenges. Some states require poll watchers to wear an identification badge, some require a list of names be turned in in advance, while West Virginia doesn’t allow any watchers in polling places at all.”

    The distinction may be slight but it is this: The poll “watchers” are there specifically to represent a particular party or candidate, The normal poll “workers” are there to conduct the electoral process. (I felt the Fox source used in the OP muddles that distinction.) My solution is simple - arm the poll workers sufficiently so they can fire back at the poll watchers should it become necessary.

  • Howdy folks,

    Everyone is pretty much spot on. Michigan, once you get outside the urban centers is very civil libertarian. The western part of down state is very religious in a particularly loathsome sort of way. Some of both of these groups are indeed, uneducated and poor and over the past decade or so, they've been emboldened into simply being assholes. Until Trump, this sort of behavior was more frowned upon.

    Now, that said, both parties have their fringes which contain some very bizarre types. Both sides. In Michigan, like everywhere else, when folks are running for office, they can be very weird AND you get all types. Doesn't mean they'll get elected.

    As for guns in polling places, shit. We've had folks open carry to the polls for years. I live in a very republican township just northwest of Lansing. We're 6K and 85% ag. Democrats do not even run for office in my township. Our elections are all decided at the primary. We have official poll watchers with an equal number from both parties. In my township, you have to be a resident and cripes, as small as we are, everyone knows everyone.

    Oh, and for the record, rono is a third term elected Republican Township Trustee. I'm on the Election Commission. We've got one of the most sustainable Master Plans in the state, have had a balanced budget for over 15 years, we get along, and there's flowers on the bridges. Taxes are low but in 2020 we floated a 3% millage for Fire and ambulance. . . and it passed 60/40. No one comes to our meetings. Damnit, it can work.

    and so it goes,

    peace and wear the mask,

  • edited February 2022
    “Oh, and for the record, rono is a third term elected Republican Township Trustee.”

    While a Dem, I realize there are some good Republicans. Been sending donations to Liz’s primary re-election campaign (and the polling doesn’t look good at this point). Not that I agree with her overall positions, but that she’s one of the few Congressional Republicans with the guts to stand up to the mob. I couldn’t do it.

    “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.”
  • Hi Hank,

    As for voting records, I'm probably a bit more of a democrat than you are. ;-)

    The last time a democrat ran for a township office around here is about 20+ years ago. Everything is decided at the primary.

  • edited February 2022

    Yep. Been that way in the northern reaches forever. I grew up in this area.

    But don’t get me going …
  • edited February 2022
    For you Michiganders here, especially with a Yooper sensibility, does "Escanaba in da Moonlight" mean anything to ya? (Hint: "Buckless! Buckless!")
  • edited February 2022

    @AndyJ - Big Jeff Daniels fan. I’ll have to watch this some time.

    BTW - That hat looks nearly like what I wear all winter. Nice warm ear flaps for those nasty blasts off partially frozen Lake Michigan. Escanaba’s maybe 100-150 miles across northern Lake Michigan from my home. It’s a much nicer and more progressive community than what that photo might suggest.

  • edited February 2022
    @Hank - Watched it ~10-15 years ago. My sweetie & I laughed nearly all the way through it. Full disclosure, some friends we recommended it to questioned our sanity, but I stand by the script as hilarious.

    Another laugh-inducing phrase from the movie has stuck with me, as a long-ago employee of a land management agency: "valuable DNR training."

    P.S. That's also pretty much what I looked like for 20 Alaska winters.

    P.P.S. You must have a Petoskey stone or two somewhere at your place.
  • Yes to the Petoskey stones.

  • Cleverly done ... shades of Red Green too.
  • edited February 2022
    Hi @AndyJ and @hank Jeff Daniels is the first good clue about exploring movie subject matter. If one wants to have more insight into human nature, Jeff Daniels can take you on that journey. And yes, our house is familiar with the movie, too.
    And the Red Green show quotes....two of my favorites: Red Green : "If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy." AND the men's club...."(Reciting the "Men's Prayer") I'm a man, but I can change, If I have to, I guess."
    I/we are trolls, meaning living south of the Mackinac Bridge between the peninsulas. But we are long time travelers to the U.P. and Keweenaw in particular. Between our home proximity to Ontario province and mingling among the far north Yoopers over the years, we are reminded of our strong speaking accent (sounds normal to us, of course).........well, at least from some on the west coast. The last test of this was a few months ago from some young ones from Riverside, CA. They enjoyed listening to the sounds of some of our words.
    Thanks for the flashbacks and memories, gentlemen.
  • Howdy folks,

    Have to put in a plug for Escanaba in the Moonlight as my nephew was the prop manager for this flick. He's still in the business here in Lansing and they just got funding for an arts center. ooohRah!

    I'm so fortunate having worked for MDOT for 30 years - half in Planning and Traffic Data Collection, and half in Fleet Management. The latter was neat because we had two major series of trips each year. In the spring we went around the state and inspected the trucks and heavy equipment of the Special Crews. In the fall we did the Road Garages for what we referred to as the Pumpkin Parade- what with the huge orange snow trucks. One of the real joys of this travel was to see Michigan, top to bottom, inside and out. Made a habit of driving one route and returning another. Ever been to Bruce Crossing, in the UP and wait for a Bruce to go by? How about the Sweet Rolls at the Hilltop Restaurant in L'Anse/Barage? A 6" cube that can feed a family of four for a couple of days. If you get there at lunch you can get the soup and dinner roll special. The dinner roll is the same size. And whatever you do, never, never, never eat horseradish in the UP. It will melt your spoon.

    and so it goes,

    peace and vote in all primaries.

  • this vid purports to be the full shot. an hour and a half.
  • Michigan can be complicated, especially for this transplanted New Englander. Despite having an Ann Arbor address, I share a driveway with a guy who flies the Gadsden “Don’t Tread on Me” flag. We have never talked politics and may never, notably because his recycled cardboard placed near ours revealed the purchase of a Sig Sauer firearm.
  • +1 And you can bet the placement of the Sig Sauer box was intentional-Second Amendment and all !
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