GOP Convention 2010–Michigan

I recently attended the GOP Convention is Michigan. It was by far the worst GOP Convention I have attended.

The crowd of 3000 was very impressive. Yet the crowd could not get in the building due to some organizational difficulties early on. Yes, from the start there were problems.

There were no after-parties. People just went home.

There were no top tier speakers from out of state. Several contested offices led to passionate factions advocating for their respective candidates.

There was no gala lunch or dinner the day of the convention. “Lunch” consisted of people standing in long lines for all eternity at concession stands. Never has a food service area been so appropriately named, since it seemed that the people had conceded on anything resembling a quality of life. Microwave pizza was one option, and there were no plastic forks. I brought my own lunch. Cutting a steak with a knife and spoon is just sheer delight.

Yet I was a vendor at this convention. As a vendor, it was a miserable experience.

If there is one thing I can’t stand, it is conservatives acting like socialists. I lost count of the number of people who asked me if the books I were selling were free.

Are you kidding me? A couple people actually were about to take the book before I explained they had to pay for it. They looked stunned.

One person had the nerve to ask me what my costs were. They pointed out I could sell it to them for what I paid for it. I explained to this person that I had other expenses, such as air fare and paying for the booth at the convention.

Too many people at this convention arrived in a bad mood from being left outside and then left frustrated when the convention went 2 1/2 hours past the scheduled end time.

A couple people told me that Michigan was hurting, which is why I was having a tough sales day. This is baseless garbage. People are hurting everywhere. The crowd was 5x larger than most conventions, and 10x larger than some of them. I covered my costs but made far less money.

I understand that Governor Jennifer Granholm is the worst governor in America, even worse than California. I have said we should give Michigan to Canada, since she managed to infiltrate it and take it over anyway.

(Somebody check her papers. I am tired of Canadians sneaking across the border.)

It seems that the people of Michigan are obsessed with Canadians. I kept telling people I was a conservative comedian. They kept insisting that I said I was a conservative Canadian. I have never had this problem anywhere else.

Michigan is broken. I cannot imagine myself ever doing business there again unless I am given a large upfront fee.

There were some nice people there, but too many of the people were just downright unpleasant.

(As expected, the ladies I met from the Michigan Federation of Republican Women were fantastic. They were a speck of sanity in an ocean of ridiculousness.)

Yes the left has destroyed Michigan. So what? The right seemed to have a look of despair, like the entire state was one giant failure. Given that the convention was in East Lansing and not Detroit, this puzzled me.

(Nobody from General Motors, Chrysler,  the Ford Family, or anybody else representing the Detroit Lions showed up. One can handle only so much defeatism in one area.)

One bright spot could have been Congressman Thaddeus McCotter, but I never saw him. I do not even know if he attended.

If there was something to like about this convention, I did not see it.

This is not sour grapes. I really did keep a pleasant demeanor throughout the day as people told me that they would buy my book after smoking a cigarette. The “Midwestern values” I have genuinely experienced in other states was replaced with people looking at me and lying in a manner that made Hollywood look sincere. Some people insisted that they had already bought my book the last time I was in Michigan, even though I had never done an event there before.

I did not make friends. I did not have memories I will cherish a lifetime.

More importantly, if other vendor friends ask me, I will tell them not to bother doing business in Michigan.

This is not personal. The state is broken. One day it may be fixed. Yet I cannot waste…not spend, but waste…my hard earned money on a convention filled with a large crowd wanting new merchandise for free.

Even the conservatives here are socialists. Perhaps hopelessness truly has set in.

Michigan is in a state of despair. Electing a Republican Governor is not enough. They must be willing to crush the unions that have destroyed the state economy.

I am just thankful that I was able to leave the state for better areas where I can actually do business.


12 Responses to “GOP Convention 2010–Michigan”

  1. Eagle 6 says:

    Eric, You may take a different position on Michigan after this football season…2-0 during pre-season…stunning. Be kind to Michiganders. There are two seasons: winter and the 4th of July. Where I grew up in Jackson, if two males happened to cross each other’s path, they had to fight…it wasn’t a right of passage – it was the way we did business. We dragged the ave with the excuse of picking up chicks but in reality, we were daring someone to look at us, so we could fight. It’s cold in Michigan, and there were factories, bars, bowling alleys, and gas stations. There aren’t many factories remaining, and few people can afford gas or bowling, but there’s still a bar on every corner…not the kind you pick up chicks in…

    I did not like reading your assessment, but it is fairly accurate. You hit a home run by stating unions have ruined Michigan. As mentioned in previous posts, the unions gave Michiganders an unrealistic expectation of what manual labor is worth. Your assessment also gave me a Ford moment, V8 epiphany…I never realized why I liked growing up in Michigan and why I miss being there…it’s not the weather…it’s the fact I am an ornery SOB and simply like being around my own kind… Having said the above, you are wrong about the Canadiens: Michiganders don’t give them a second thought…

  2. The Left destroyed michigan? Wow. I can’t imagine what goes on in the minds on conservatives sometimes. How the heck did the Left destroy Michigan?

    Michigan is destroyed. That is true. Much moreso than any other state. Deindustrialization destroyed Michigan. Free Trade destroyed Micihgan. Sleazy, rightwing “Right to Work” states destroyed Michigan. These are the facts, period. There’s no room for argument on any of these points. And to say that the unions – the working people of Michigan who wanted better lives – killed Michigan, killed themselves, is heartless and completely misses the point. The people of Michigan, for the most part, are aware of these facts. If you expected Happy Time at a GOP convention in Michigan, then you just don’t keep up enough with the news.


  3. Micky 2 says:

    “The Left destroyed michigan? Wow. I can’t imagine what goes on in the minds on conservatives sometimes. How the heck did the Left destroy Michigan?’

    My 15 year old can answer that one.
    Auto manufacturers charging too much for crappy products that they couldnt sell in order to maintain the ridiculous pay and pensions the liberal backed unions forced them to pay . A level of expeditures that the revenues could not maintain.
    Factories shut down, mortgages defaulted, collateralbusiness and suppliers failed, people left or settled for lower standards of living.

    “There’s no room for argument on any of these points. ”

    yeah, sure “Oh-Great-One”, whatever you say.

  4. The labor overhead for non-union auto manufacturers is pretty much exactly the same as the labor overhead for union auto manufacturers. So, the Right is being a bunch of liars about that.

    As for “crappy cars,” yes, the unions have stood up and demanded the atuomakers make better cars, but remember – “unions” are simply assemblies of American working people (something the Right truly loathes), and they’re tastes and attitudes are a microcosm of the rest of the country. Americans wanted big, loud, heavy, gas-guzzling cars, and Detriot was giving them what they wanted. They got away with making these beautiful beasts because the US was the prime consumer of gasoline and able to leverage it’s buying power to supress the price at the pumps. The actual quality of the cars varied, and it’s a myth that Detriot was ever producing a full fleet of nothing but bad cars. Many of the cars were great. But when, in the late 70’s and again in the early 2000’s, gas prices went up and Americans turned to more efficient, smaller, foreign cars. That’s the market at work.

    While the Corporatocracy, and it’s sycophants on the Right, blamed unions for the destruction of the auto industry (Blame Americans First – the Rightwing Motto), it was Free Trade (which hit especially hard when gas prices went up, though that would be an example of Free Trade actually working correctly!), and anti-labor manufacturers (who went to the Maquilladoras, Right to Work states, and such), and our own cannibalistic healthcare policy (sending manufacturers up to Canada), that destroyed the auto industry in Michigan. Anyone who thinks otherwise is blindly ideological and (probably intentionally) ignorant of the facts.


  5. Oops! “As for “crappy cars,” yes, the unions should have stood up and demanded the automakers (sp) make better cars,”


  6. Toma says:

    Union extortion has and will destroy any manufacturing organization it controls. History speaks for itself. Unions have achieved one thing it is called “featherbedding”. Look it up.

    Union members kicking up dues to the bosses for protection. Unions are the biggest scam on the planet next to Obamacare, global warming, cap and trade, EPA, OSHA, DOJ, Congress…


  7. “Union extortion?” Really? The union workers make pretty much the same, and get pretty much the same benefits packages as the non-union workers. The difference is that it doesn’t take a union to get a European or Asian company to treat you right. In the 1950’s, when our industrial economy was booming, did the fact that a third of the workforce was unionized hurt industry? No. So, there you have TWO solid pieces of evidence proving that you are WRONG.

    If you blame regulations, if you blame workers, than you are no more than just a pathetic corporatist sycophant.


  8. Micky 2 says:

    ‘The labor overhead for non-union auto manufacturers is pretty much exactly the same as the labor overhead for union auto manufacturers.’

    Oh bullsht Jersey.
    Where do you come up with this rap ? seriously ?
    The exell in wages, benefits, conditions and pensions is the unions major selling point for crying out loud.

    I’m well aware of the plight American cars have taken. And thank God the unions didnt have a say so what models the companies produced otherwise we’d all be driving 18 wheelers of the most labor intensive kind designed to break down so warranty maintenece could have job security.
    Unions are freaking extortionists. That was the close tie in the beginnings with organzied crime.
    Tell me Jersey.
    The (collapsed) USSR was heavely unionized. Did you ever buy a product that was stamped “USSR” ?
    As far as your contempt for our constitutional right to work goes…

    “The only area of our country that still today has a thriving manufacturing industry is these “Right to Work” states. Consider that term carefully: Right to Work. What does it mean? Simply, it means, that any work that needs to be done—from janitor to rocket scientist—any person has a Right to Work at this occupation; providing he and his employer agree what the work is worth to both of them; which naturally includes the skills, talents, education, aptitude, attitude, hustle and reliability the worker can bring to bear for the benefit of the enterprise.

    Right to Work laws guarantee our Constitutional right to freedom of association. Workers are still free to unionize, but with a huge difference from Michigan state law: If the unionized workers decide the work they are performing is not worth what they are being paid—in their eyes—they are free to walk off the job and strike but: The company is free also. The company has the freedom to decide to hire a whole new team of workers to replace the striking workers. ”

    Read up, learn a little sumpin
    Union state are failing, and it aint because of “free trade”

  9. Micky 2 says:

    I can get and keep a good paying job without a union.
    Can you ? As a matter of fact I did that and hired 6 more. All by my individual self.
    Dont call me “pathetic” You’ll never earn the right if your only means of security is to team up with a bunch of hoodlums an extort for protection.
    Unions are about as good for the economy as a unionized military would be for the country.
    My dad once told me that if you take care of your employees they wont steal from you.
    I asked him; “then how do you explain unions “?

  10. Ya’ know, Micky, a little planning goes a long way. The biggest difference in labor overhead between Japanese and European automakers here in the US (and ya’ gotta love the way you guys simply adore foreign automakers!) is that they don’t have the legacy costs of the American automakers. Of course, they do have the legacy costs back home, but here, of course, they don’t – they haven’t been here long enough. The cost of living in America is very high. Its much lower in Japan and Europe. Again, more proof of our stupidity. In Japan and Europe they don’t rape students and retirees of their limited savings. Other than that, the Japanese and Europeans pay their people about the same and treqat them pretty well. They don’t have to worry about the differences between states, but they do, in their own self interest, prefer to do business in states that are more classically liberal in their business regs – which is why we see foreign plants in poorer southern states. These states are cannibalizing states like Michigan.

    If you think most businesses “take care of (their) employees) then you’re living in Dreamland. most American businesses treat their people like bumsquat. Its the greatest (and stupidest) failing of our American business and managerial culture.


  11. Toma says:

    Good management does exist in American business. Many businesses do treat their employees as a valuable asset but there are businesses that do not. These businesses usually fail. However many of them just re-tool or move their labor intensive departments overseas. Unions have out lived their value to any one but Democrats seeking re-election.

    The point is that people have the right to refuse to work for a “bad” company just as a company has the right to refuse to hire a bad applicant or fire a bad employee. Unions do not fit in the equation. Unions add expense and muddy up the process and in the end the process grinds to a halt. There is no argument here history speaks for itself.


  12. Robyrt says:

    These travelogue posts are great – shows the less media-filled side of the GOP scene. Keep it up!

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.