Province of Michigan: A Modest Proposal,
Province of Michigan: A Modest Proposal
By Jerry Politex
Toyota recently had to decide whether to put its new auto plant in the U.S. or in Canada. It chose Canada because that country's health care policy is such that Toyota's workers would receive full health care through their taxes, and the auto company would not have to share in that cost, making the price of their cars lower. More recently, Ford followed in the footsteps of other U.S. auto makers, laying off tens of thousands of workers and closing a number of plants because, in part, its cars were too expensive, due to the company's health care coverage of its workers added to the cost of its cars.
The solution to this problem is obvious: the State of Michigan should choose to become part of Canada. While the heart of the U.S. auto industry would become Canadian, the workers would not lose their jobs, and the new Province of Michigan auto industry --Ford, Chrysler, and General Motors-- would be able to lower the cost of its cars, making them more competitive on the world market.
Our modest proposal would have little effect on the daily social lives of the people of Michighan, since they would remain living in their same neighborhoods and working at their same jobs. Further, the policies and attitudes of the Bush Administration are based on the concept that citizens are primarily concerned with making a buck and national security, and Canada can provide both better than the U.S. has. Also, all of the citizens of the Province of Michigan would be treated to a cleaner environment, secure in the knowledge that they stand less chance of getting shot in Canada's anti-gun society and, if they are injured in an accident, they wouldn't have to go into credit-card bankruptcy to pay for treatment at a medical center. Finally, the large number of Muslims that help make up the Michigan work force will find less prejudice when they are welcomed as citizens in the new Canadian Province.
Given the history of life and politics in the U.S., we know that this rational proposal won't become reality without a fight from corporations, politicians, and others with personal vested interests --gun manufacturers and defense contractors, for example-- not willing to give up those benefits for the sake of a better society. Hence, why not start with a vote for succession by the citizens of Detroit? Detroit would be a good place to start: not only is it the administrative center of the auto industry, it's also North of Windsor, a close, sister city in Canada. Decades from now, the citizens of the Province of Michigan will ask, "Why didn't we think of this sooner?"
Jerry "Politex" Barrett is Editor of Bush Watch ( www.bushwatch.com)