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In and outs of the political campaigns, focusing on Michigan and Lansing, Tim Skubick will report regularly throughout the primary and then general election campaigns.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Growth Industry

     Some of my friends are for it and some of my friends are against it and me?  I'm with my friends.
     That might well be the best way to sum up the an agonizing debate over the prospects that Barack Obama may send us some suspected terrorists who now live in the gulag at Guantomano Bay.  In fact this week the prez sent two emissaries to check out a prison up north to do just that.
      No one knows if they will end up in Standish, but this week at the first public hearing on the possibility, everyone was all over the lot on the merits of "Gitmo comes to Michigan."
      With the state about to shutter the maximum-security prison, the governor is more open to housing crooks from California than the inmates at Gitmo, but her view is not shared by all.
      While the governor frets, Alan Kilar from the UAW, which represents workers at the prison, has no fears. "I don't think it's a worry."  Kilar wants to save jobs.
      And so does his union brother Mel Grieshaber who runs the state Corrections Officers outfit.  He, on the other hand, wants no part of the Gitmo crowd.  "All of the jobs will be filled by the feds or the military.  What good does that do us?"
      Then there is local Arenac County Commissioner Mike Synder who would welcome the Gitmo guys with open arms.
      "They are human beings.  They are not supermen. They won't bring bombs."
        However having them=2 0in Standish might attract outsiders who do carry bombs?
       Snyder rejects that claiming that if two or three Arabs show up in downtown Standish, the "sheriff will know about it in two or three minutes."
       Rep. Joel Sheltrown from the area worries more about the California inmates that could included hardened gang members whose families may follow the convicts to Standish.  Then what?
       All of this made for delightful theatre for the media which is tired of the budget deficit story.
       Turns out Michigan may be on the verge of a true growth industry.  Pennsylvania is making noises it likes Standish too for housing some of its crooks.
C2      Say yes, to Michigan.


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