We’re all over the map. We weigh in Michigan’s failed charter experiment, the conservative War on Women shows no signs of ceasing, we travel to Chicago to fight climate change, and talk about Iraq.

Let’s dig in.

This week in PM blogging:

Public Dollars, Private Profit

Michigan’s charter experiment has been a failure by educational standards. Charter school operators, along with their allies in the legislature that have failed to require proper oversight, have moved us beyond mere privatization – let’s call it the “profitization” of our public school system.

“Cynicism is a choice, hope is a better one.”

To protect our health and our Great Lakes from the threat of climate change then we must transform our energy future from the bottom up. It is only through the continued hard work of each and every Michigander that we will protect and preserve our natural resources for future generations because the greatest risk of all is to do nothing.

Let’s talk about Iraq, baby

Since one of the Senate’s primary functions is helping set our foreign policy, Terri Lynn Land was rightly asked how she would handle the situation in Iraq. While calling the president “chief and commander,” Terri Lynn Land managed to reveal her complete lack of expertise on the issue, conflating ISIS with Al Qaeda. Really, Terri!?

Too close for comfort?

Women in Michigan just can’t get a break from the relentless conservative attacks on our reproductive rights. If conservative legislators were really interested in helping struggling women and families they would be working to make greater investments in early childhood education and fixing our roads, not funneling hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars into medically unsound programs that attempt to limit women’s options to prevent pregnancy.

TWIP Clips

Guilty as charged

This week, the Detroit Free Press is running an in-depth series highlighting wasteful spending, self-dealing, and other problems associated Michigan’s charter schools.

In response, National Heritage Academies, Michigan’s largest for-profit charter operator, is running advertisements on the Free Press website’s front page as well as the front page of the Detroit News. The approximate cost for one day of this type of advertising is $37,500 – enough to put a teacher in the classroom.

Greg McNeilly, an employee of a company owned by the Devoses, who strongly support charter schools, quickly got defensive and angry on Twitter, calling the Free Press racist and referring to the statewide news outlet as having “less credibility than most blogs.”

Whining, making up wild accusations, and name-calling…sounds like the behavior of someone who knows they’re guilty. The Free Press is exposing charter schools as the failure that they are and that has put National Heritage Academies and Greg McNeilly in full panic mode.

Let’s hope that this spurs our legislature to take a hard look at charters that have failed to deliver the promised results and reminds them that Michigan’s public education isn’t for sale.


Michigan Laborers aren’t letting legislators get away with the fact that they skipped town for a three-month vacation without taking action to repair our crumbling roads and bridges. They took to the streets for a week-long “Fix Our Roads” tour calling on Michigan lawmakers to get back to work.

Progressive Reads:

State of charter schools: How Michigan spends $1 billion but fails to hold schools accountable

Damon J. Keith: Ensuring equality requires diligence

SCOTUS’ upcoming Hobby Lobby decision: What you need to know

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