A bridge to somewhere.

Ears still ringing, but maybe…a tad less? It’s possible. Anyway, today I decided to stop obsessing over it. Kate and I celebrated the last day of school by riding bikes down the road to our favorite burger joint, which has the advantage of the best onion rings in town. We arrived around 7:30, and I hoped at least one of the bar TVs would be tuned to “Jeopardy!,” but no dice. It was dueling entertainment shows, both of which had “exclusive” photos of Matthew McConaghey’s wedding. The photos were identical. No one knows what “exclusive” means anymore, I guess.

Usually I use bar TV as an opportunity to practice my lip-reading. It’s amazing how much you can pick up without the captioning on, and given the way my hearing is of late, it’s probably a useful skill to start working on.

The big news today is that the new bridge to Canada is finally a done deal — it will be announced Friday, everyone seems to agree — with no help from the legislature. The governor has made this thing a priority since he was elected, but the troll who owns the old one has stopped at nothing to mess up the works. Finally, with the Canadian government picking up every dime of the construction cost, it looks like it’s going to happen through something called an interlocal agreement. So here we are, about to announce a major piece of infrastructure that will bring jobs, improve trade and otherwise polish the state’s finally brightening economic picture and? The cheese — the governor — stands alone. Today, the legislature warned him to not dare spend a dime of public money on it. American public money, anyway.

This is what the American public has come to: A half-billion dollar asset that everyone agrees is desperately needed, and a local county commissioner calls it “a government bridge.” Thanks, you tea party numbskulls.

Somebody’s weeping over this, and it isn’t Jesus.

Let’s skip to the bloggage, so I can go nurse my ringing head:

A particularly good Colbert bit the other night. I like the ones where he seems to be on the verge of cracking up himself.

T-Lo write their last Mad Style of the season. It should not pass unnoticed.

And with that, I’m off to bed. I have to get up early tomorrow.

Posted at 12:10 am in Current events, Detroit life |

39 responses to “A bridge to somewhere.”

  1. Dexter said on June 14, 2012 at 12:32 am

    I hope the contractors aren’t the same ones who built the Zilwaukee Bridge. What a mess that deal was.

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  2. David C. said on June 14, 2012 at 6:45 am

    Now Matty can concentrate on being the biggest, bestest slumlord in the world.

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  3. Deborah said on June 14, 2012 at 7:47 am

    I was unable to view the last few photos of the excellent T&L piece. What was the last photo captioned “she’s on her way”?

    Edit: I looked at it again. Maybe there is no missing photo? What does it mean? Megan? Sally?

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  4. Connie said on June 14, 2012 at 7:58 am

    A New Yorker visits Detroit and actually says good things. http://www.nypost.com/p/entertainment/travel/just_back_detroit_BfI8YFbbFtFCnHbMzVuTzK?utm_medium=rss&utm_content=Travel

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  5. Basset said on June 14, 2012 at 8:46 am

    How did the existing bridge come to be privately owned, anyway?

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  6. Mark P said on June 14, 2012 at 10:00 am

    “Government bridge.” An Atlanta-based right-wing radio spewer calls public schools “government schools.” I wonder if he calls the airports where he lands his private plane “government airports”?

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  7. Jeff Borden said on June 14, 2012 at 10:06 am

    I hate teabaggers.

    Really, I actually hate them. They reduce the complexity of our lives, our community and our society to bumper stickers, then revel in their perceived profundity. When my Republican dad and I used to debate politics back in the late `60s and early `70s, I argued that the greatest danger to the U.S. would come from the right, not the left. The teabaggers prove me correct.

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  8. Connie said on June 14, 2012 at 10:11 am

    Jeff, I’ve seen this on bumper stickers. When fascism comes to America, it will come wrapped in the flag and waving a cross.

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  9. Bitter Scribe said on June 14, 2012 at 10:12 am

    A bridge? These guys are getting their spleens overheated because “the government” is building a goddamned bridge? Over a goddamned international boundary?

    What do they think government is for, anyway? And why, if they hate and despise every aspect of it, do they insist on foisting themselves into it?

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  10. Jeff Borden said on June 14, 2012 at 10:22 am

    Amen, Connie. I always get them mixed up but the author of that quote was either Upton Sinclair or Sinclair Lewis???

    I’m supposed to have dinner with some cousins when I’m in southern Ohio next weekend for my aunt and uncle’s 65th wedding anniversary and I’m dreading being in the company of one particular fellow who went full metal teabag when Obama was elected. He works for a giant defense contractor so his income is entirely dependent on government spending, yet he’s constantly thumping the small government bongos and shrieking about Obama like he was Pol Pot.

    I’ll have to refrain from any cocktails lest I totally lose my temper with him.

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  11. Judybusy said on June 14, 2012 at 10:43 am

    Good luck with the restraint, Jeff.

    As folks might recall, I am a government worker–a county social worker. My unit screens people for civil commitment–folks who are too ill to care for themselves or have done something dangerous. We also screen for chemical dependency.They can ultimately be court-ordered to receive treatment. I’d like to know what’s supposed to happen to these people if government doesn’t step in to provide safety and containment. There is no money to be made, so I don’t see a private company taking it on. This is just a very small example of what services government provides. If they got the government they think they want, the teabaggers would be astounded at the horrible society we’d live in. Or maybe not. But many don’t realize the many, many services provided that we all take for granted.

    However, beginning tomorrow, I’m not worrying about all this. We’re joining friends at a B and B for the weekend. It’s our fifth anniversary–we originally met at the place–and it’s a highlight of the summer.

    Nancy, I hope the clearing trend is real. Also, apropro of nothing, did you help on a 48-Hour Film Project last year? The screening for the Minneapolis movies are going on this week; I’ve been to two evenings and it’s been a blast.

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  12. Mark P said on June 14, 2012 at 10:49 am

    Hey Jeff, I have a great teabagger bumper sticker for you. It says something along the lines of “good government is small government.” This bumper sticker from the local tea party is on a car with a handicapped sticker, in a handicapped parking spot, in a parking lot for a very large government office building on a military base. He uses a government-defined handicapped condition to get his government parking pass and gets all his money from working for the government, including very nice health insurance. I have a great idea of how to make government smaller: fire this guy’s ass.

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  13. Bob (not Greene) said on June 14, 2012 at 11:09 am

    Jeff B., a wise crack about making the govt smaller by cutting defense spending too much? I’m guessing probably, because in addition to being completely blind to their own grasping self interest, the tea party folks I’ve run into possess apparently zero sense of irony and have a default response setting of “rage” in their brains. Still …

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  14. Julie Robinson said on June 14, 2012 at 11:13 am

    Colbert had a good piece on those horrible government workers the other night–maybe the same as the Romney Olympic horse. It was about how the greedy police, firefighters and teachers are ruining things. Classic.

    Jeff, my teabagger visit is coming up too and I’m reminding myself that this trip is not about me, it’s about getting my mom out to see her family and one sister particularly who is in very poor health. It’ll be a real challenge not to engage them, but I plan on changing the subject a lot. Hope you can do the same.

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  15. Connie said on June 14, 2012 at 11:25 am

    MY BFF is getting tea baggy and it makes me sad. She gave me a hard time about buying GM, because GM has stolen billions of our tax dollars. This from a VP at a major automotive supply company. What would have happened to you dear if GM and Chrysler had gone bankrupt? And my husband is from Flint so we buy American. I don’t care where the parts were made, I care where the profits go.

    She complaints about her tax dollars going to GM. My husband says where was she when he was going to demonstrations about my tax dollars paying for war in Iraq?

    We agreed long ago not to talk politics.

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  16. Jeff Borden said on June 14, 2012 at 11:39 am

    Thanks for all the advice, folks.

    I think one thing that truly bothers me about conservatives, in general, and teabaggers, specifically, is how cocksure they are about their positions. As a liberal, I’m sure I have some blind spots, but Christ, I can see more than a few liberal ideas that were absolutely horrible. Public housing, for example, may have been designed to get people out of slums, but all it did was warehouse the poor and effectively wall them off from the rest of us to disastrous results.

    Yet I never hear rightwingers talking about their mistakes. In fact, they prefer revisionist history. Sometimes, when I check Facebook, an advertisement pops up for something called Newsbusters with a photo of W. and the legend, “How the liberal media destroyed a good man.” Are you fucking kidding me? The invasion of Iraq was a triumph??? The addition of a few trillion in additional debt was good economic policy? They still dry hump the idea of trickle down economics when even David Stockman, the budget director under St. Ronald, declared it ridiculous. The destruction of the middle class since 1980 would seem to prove otherwise.

    I remain genuinely worried about the fall election. There’s an absolutely terrifying story in the NYT today about that cocksucker Sheldon Adelson, the 8th richest mofo in America and a man who says he is willing to spend up to $1-billion to defeat Barack Obama. He can certainly afford it. . .an investment in Willard the Windsock will probably be worth trillions to Adelson. . .and he’ll get the war with Iran he desires as a super right-wing Zionist and Netanyahu supporter.

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  17. brian stouder said on June 14, 2012 at 12:04 pm

    Say – we’re off to Ohio for a funeral, but thought I’d dump in this non-sequitur, only because Pam and I have visited this ship, and the headline caught my attention (plus, there’s a neat photo there, too)


    We may need some palate cleansers, as my understanding is that the US Supreme Court tends to hand down decisions on Mondays and Thursdays…. (not that an oil slick is a palate cleanser!)

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  18. MarkH said on June 14, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    On a tragic note, we had our first fatality of the season in Yellowstone last week. No grizzlies involved, but still horrible. An 18-year old female seasonal from Russia went off-trail above the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and fell to the bottom.


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  19. Sue said on June 14, 2012 at 12:15 pm

    Oh my gods. They are being MEAN to Gretchen over at Fox.

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  20. Charlotte said on June 14, 2012 at 12:17 pm

    Deborah — the last two photos of the T&L piece show Don sitting on his bed in his apartment, and then Peggy sitting on her bed in the hotel room. They each have a drink, and are in nearly-identical poses. Hence, Peggy is on her way up …

    And all my horse-world friends are also chuckling over the Colbert dressage video. Of course, we’re all hunter-jumper people, so we always laugh at the dressage people ….

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  21. Scout said on June 14, 2012 at 12:26 pm

    Jeff B, I worry about the election too, mostly due to the insane amount of money the Super PACS are going to throw at it. However, I do believe this election is going to be economy driven and this piece I saw today gave me some hope.
    So there’s that. And there’s also the connecting-with-the-regular-folk problem that Rmoney (R-Unmanned Drone) has. The Colbert link was a perfect illustration, and funny as hell too!

    Speaking of teabaggers, I never cease to be shocked at how vocal they can be about their opinions, especially in situations where it is obvious the listeners do not agree with them but are too polite to engage. There is a real lack of awareness with these folks that goes beyond their own often self contradictory views.

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  22. Dexter said on June 14, 2012 at 12:26 pm

    Craig Crawford , commenting on Current TV: Middle Income Politics… Craig: “I’ve been here (Washington) 25 years and I’ve never met a lobbyist for the middle class.”

    Government Bridge? How about some Government Mule:

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  23. Julie Robinson said on June 14, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    So Gretchen is just now figuring out that she works with/for jerks?

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  24. alex said on June 14, 2012 at 12:45 pm

    Not much I can add to the teabagger discussion, except that I’ve stopped being polite and just tell them I find their harangues insulting to my intelligence. If more of us would stand up to them they’d think twice about opening their damn yaps.

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  25. beb said on June 14, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    The first comment on ThinkProgress’s report on Gretchen walking off the set said that was like working on a farm and complaining about the smell of manure. Hey! I worked on a farm and I still complained about the smell. Horses aren’t too bad. Cow much worse. Pigs….. Pig manure should be classified as toxic waste.

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  26. coozledad said on June 14, 2012 at 1:03 pm

    One of them was out at our place teaching us how to trim the mule’s feet.
    Because we were tired of the racist harangues of our usual farrier, we decided to spring for an instructor and trim the hooves ourselves henceforward. As soon as this particular heavily hair-gelled douche pulled up in his Gadsden flag ornamented truck, I knew we were in for a bout of room temperature IQ lathermouthing before the day was out. Sure enough, we got the “Obama is selling out Israel” spiel. Followed by “You must be Obama People. You always quiet”.

    Yes we are. Because discretion is the better part of setting up the forced labor camps for loudmouthed asswipes. And when we come for them, they won’t be able to hear us over their ongoing rage party.

    There’ll be some damn bridges built then- some of them out in the middle of a fucking bean field- some of them fashioned from the welded carcasses of burnt out pickup trucks.

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  27. Charlotte said on June 14, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Mark — I got talking to a bunch of employees from Lake on Saturday night when we were at the (awful) Rib and Chop house watching the basketball game. What a tragic story — and I’m old enough now that all I can think of is that poor girl’s parents, in Russia, getting that phone call. Heartbreaking.

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  28. brian stouder said on June 14, 2012 at 1:42 pm

    OK – a real palate cleanser, after that Yellowstone story, with the genuine hope and sincere belief that Nancy’s “gaggle”* is (and always was) sufficient


    an excerpt:

    As a woman, having a gaggle provides you with a love life full of possibility: you have many men in your life, in many ambiguous but enriching ways, who are all teaching you about yourself and your needs and desires and leading you closer to the guy and relationship you want,” say Massa and Wiegand. Terri Trespicio, a New York-based dating and relationship coach who is single herself, exuberantly extols the “uncoupled state” and takes things a step further: If you’re happily single but enjoy dating, she recommends seeing three different men regularly.

    “When you date just one guy, you might feel pressured to commit, even if you’re not ready,” she says. “If you see two men, there’s often this unspoken need to choose between them. But three guys tend to balance each other out, like a tripod.”

    A tripod? Why not a four-legged table?

    (I think the author just likes the word “gaggle”, and constructed the whole book around that word.

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  29. Connie said on June 14, 2012 at 1:49 pm

    Michigan legislature will not allow woman legislators to speak in abortion debate: http://michiganradio.org/post/women-reps-michigan-barred-speaking-one-vagina-mention . One of them is my rep, I was glad to realize that I was being represented by one of the few willing to speak against this bill.

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  30. Brandon said on June 14, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    “An Atlanta-based right-wing radio spewer”

    I wonder if this is Neil Boortz. He’s turning over his mike to Herman Cain.

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  31. Bitter Scribe said on June 14, 2012 at 3:20 pm

    Latest from the Sandusky trial: His lawyer is trying to argue that he wrote love letters to 11-year-old boys not to groom them as victims, but because he has “histrionic personality disorder.”

    And those two things are supposed to be mutually exclusive…why?

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  32. paddyo' said on June 14, 2012 at 4:17 pm

    Hey, I recall a week or two or three back that some readers/commenters were not seeing the numbers to the left of the comments. Well, today I had this work laptop “upgraded” to Windows 7(it was previously the venerable Windows XP), and now MY numbers are gone, too.
    What was the drill in restoring/recovering again?

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  33. beb said on June 14, 2012 at 4:36 pm

    Paddyo’. Step one Delete Windows 7…..

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  34. Scout said on June 14, 2012 at 4:46 pm

    Just saw this and thought of all of you here.

    >This book contains fifteen pages of story, followed by eight pages of pin-ups of Sarah Palin. If you actually felt a little sick start to crawl up the back of your throat when your first saw that, I can guarantee you weren’t the only one. And yes, they’re not kidding around with the pin-ups.<

    Read More: http://www.comicsalliance.com/2011/01/20/steampunk-palin-comic/#ixzz1xnoS5tvM

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  35. coozledad said on June 14, 2012 at 5:24 pm

    Jaysus. Pammy Gellar done gone swimmin’ in Jim Demint’s ol’ meth quarry.
    That shit will fuck you up, Pam.
    Twenty years of the Chroncrite legacy and we ahve gonthat much further of the deep end. Media ia a propactvisit arm whose one goal – shape the news, change the ness, even live about the news to advance a collectivist, pro-sharia agandena. How else culd an unqualfied, bitter Ameria hater hold the eat in the Obama office.
    H/T Little Green Footballs via Wonkette.

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  36. brian stouder said on June 14, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    Scout, that is flat-out the most demented thing I’ve seen this week! Made me laugh out loud, though, and got Pam laughing, too.

    Good stuff!

    Connie, that was a fascinating and troubling bit of news you posted.

    I wonder what the tea-partiers would say, if Bachmann got barred from speaking, for wanting to have investigations of members of congress for being “unAmerican”; or if that member of congress from Florida got barred for calling all the Democrats in congress “communists”; or if they censured the yahoo member of congress who screamed “LIAR!!” during the president’s State of the Union Address.

    Actually, I don’t wonder at all what those people would say, at all; nor what their rightwing noise machine flying monkeys would cover the airwaves with. We already hear it ever day.

    There’d be fevered talk of “re-education camps” and “2nd Amendment solutions”, and “unAmerican leftist powergrabs”, etc etc.

    But no. Here in the real world, elected representatives of the people get silenced and shamed, for daring to speak their minds, and the so-called “tea partiers” are rooting for their suppression.

    edit – Cooze – keep up, man! Ms Gellar refers to the media as the “enemedia”!

    The people of Murfreesboro continue their fight despite the relentless smear campaign by the enemedia, Islamic supremacists and Islamic apologists. Well done. Their initial approach to the battle was badly flawed, but they have regained their footing.

    That woman is clearly on something more toxic than meth…

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  37. Suzanne said on June 14, 2012 at 6:27 pm

    On the tea partiers. I used to work in government funded public library world. Loved it. Now I work in the corporate world, but I still have some conservative friends from the library world. I tell them stories of how the corporate world runs (random firings, no training, lack of communication, money either wasted or, more often, they don’t spend a dime on anything at the bottom of the system, only at the top. Need supplies? We order once a month and if you run out of paper before that, you just wait). My conservative paid-by-tax-dollars friends are appalled at this. I keep trying to tell them that they may love the business world, but that is because they don’t live in it. Government workers usually have policies in order that govern how reprimands, raises, etc are handed out. Some businesses are great because they choose to be so to attract the best; many of them are a mess. And that’s what the tea partiers want to emulate.

    That, and the acquaintance of mine, tea party all the way, who had her shorts in a knot because her son-in-law, a public teacher counselor, had his pay cut. How DARE they? How did she not understand that cutting gov’t funding cuts across the board, not just the people you don’t like. Not a lot of brain power there.

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  38. Connie said on June 14, 2012 at 7:48 pm

    What a chronic ear infection looks like: http://boingboing.net/2012/06/14/what-a-chronic-ear-infection-l.html

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  39. Brandon said on June 15, 2012 at 2:10 pm

    Sure enough, we got the “Obama is selling out Israel” spiel

    That’s progress of a sort. If this happened eighty years ago, this kind of guy would be ranting how FDR was selling out to the Jews.

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