November 18, 2018

Amy Kerr Hardin | Author

Ballot Proposals — Easy as 1, 2, 3

Oct. 27, 2018

Michigan voters have a once in a generation opportunity to send a strong message to Lansing next week. Three ballot proposals, each unique unto itself, and borne of their own sources, are to be determined through our electoral process.

Compared to other states, Michigan’s ba...

Term Limits: The Best of Intentions Gone Awry

Aug. 25, 2018

There’s a social media meme making the rounds suggesting that those who don’t like professional politicians should consider having a plumber perform their next colonoscopy. The crude inference is clear: We should place a premium on experience, education, and institutional memo... Read More >>

Drawing the Line on Corruption

June 30, 2018


A dedicated group of Michigan activists working to restore the democratic process is under attack through a well-heeled GOP campaign designed to thwart citizen-driven governance. Sketchy maneuvers intended to quash statewide ballot questions in the November election predict... Read More >>

Ain't No Sunshine

April 28, 2018

“Sunshine Week” came and went with little fanfare earlier this year, garnering all the predictable editorials calling for more transparency in government, a concept captured by the maxim “sunshine is the best disinfectant.”

Transparency. It's a simple premi...

Helicopter Lawmakers in Lansing

Dec. 30, 2017

The war on local control started with an incendiary state fireworks law designed to supersede local rules, the folly of which was painfully illustrated when a local citizen blasted away a good portion of his, um … man package. Pet owners across the state needed to administer tranqu... Read More >>

Northern Michigan Lawmakers Belly Up to the Lobbyist Trough

Nov. 11, 2017

The elected officials we send to Lansing just love to be wined and dined like royalty, and there's no shortage of lobbyists vying to pick up the tab. Rich Robinson, the former director of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network, a nonprofit, non-partisan watchdog organization, sardonically ... Read More >>

Death by a Thousand Hacks

Sept. 16, 2017

It’s just not that unusual anymore. My credit card was hacked twice in the past three years. And last year, my 24-year-old daughter had her identity stolen. Her resulting credit report was 54 pages long. A few years ago, in a nightmarish scenario, my best friend had her IRS identity... Read More >>

Battling the Big Box Bullies

July 25, 2017


Armchair fiscal-policy critics abound. They love to opine on how their local leaders have bungled the budget, draining dry the community coffers. It's all too easy to assume these financial jams are the result of some dastardly longitudinal experiment in incompetence on the... Read More >>

Slaying the Gerrymandered Beast

April 15, 2017

A number of Republican Michigan lawmakers have been in the news for dodging the madding crowds of disenfranchised constituents. These elected officials are cowering safe in the knowledge that their re-election is a lock. It’s all about gerrymandering, the corruptive practice of mani... Read More >>

In The Crosshairs: Home Rule In Michigan

Jan. 21, 2017

Under the specter of a populist-fueled authoritarian regime installed at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, the concept of home rule is now more imperiled than ever in our fragile democracy.

Here the term “home rule” refers to local control — the singular place where the ... Read More >>