Why’s the internet turning on Jake Croman?

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I’m fascinated by the evolution of frontier justice in the digital age. Whenever there’s a story of someone being turned on by the internet, I’m completely captivated. Regardless of whether or not it’s deserved, I just can’t turn away. It’s one thing to watch a story spread like Janet Jackson’s nipple across the internet, but it’s something altogether different to see individual people so caught-up in a story that they decide to invest themselves on a personal level, joining in an anonymous movement to bring a specific person down for his or her perceived crimes. And we’re seeing an incredible example of this play out today, where the internet, based on a 33-second video clip, has collectively decided to ruin the life of a University of Michigan student from New York.

While there’s considerable debate over what happened prior to the 33 seconds captured in the video, these are the facts as we know them. On Sunday, March 20, a U-M student by they name of Jake Croman, or one of his friends, requested an Uber pickup. And, when the driver, a man by the name of Artur Zawada, arrived, a verbal altercation ensued, during which Croman, surrounded by his shouting Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) frat brothers, began berating the driver, calling him, among other things, a “minimum wage faggot” and a “little piece of shit.” [That’s Croman on the right in the image at the top of this post.]

I can understand why this video went viral in Ann Arbor, where, for a long time now there’s been concern about the growing influx of wealthy New York students, and how their presence might be changing our beloved little midwestern college town, but I’m not quite so certain as to why this story has taken off nationally, when there are so many videos posted each day of people berating one another. My guess, and I’d be curious to know what others think, is that the weight of the internet is coming down on Croman, who happens to be the son of Steven Croman, one of New York City’s most reviled landlords, because of the class dynamic at the center of the conflict. [The elder Croman, by the way, is currently under investigation for possibly using illegal tactics to force out rent-stabilized tenants.] It’s a story, I think, that plays well in a nation where the middle class is disappearing and a species of arrogant, entitled super-rich are emerging.

When Croman sticks his face in Zawada’s car window and says, “You’re an Uber driver, go fucking drive, you little fuck… There are fifty of you, and there is one of me, who spends the most money, you little fuck,” it understandably pushes people’s buttons. And, it doesn’t help when, at the end of their confrontation, Croman yells at Zawada, as he’s walking away, that he’s just going to go back to his apartment and watch television, implying that he’s of a class that doesn’t have to struggle, like the man he’s yelling at, in a service industry job that’s beneath him.

The exchange between the two men is timely, just as it was timely back in 1963, when Bob Dylan read about the killing of a black, 51 year old barmaid by the wealthy young son of a Maryland tobacco farming family, and penned The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll. Some things just speak so perfectly to the time in which they happen that there’s really no way you can ignore them.

Here, if you haven’t seen it, is the video.

As for the true facts of the case, I have no idea what’s really going on here. Croman has said in a statement that the incident began when the driver made an offensive comment and “refused to pick me up on the basis of my religion.” And others on Youtube have since started leaving comments claiming that Zawada has made anti-Semitic comments in the past. Zawada, in response, has offered his Uber rating is 4.8 after 2600 rides. He’s also said that this was the fourth run-in he’s had with Croman and his friends. According to Zawada, who was apparently born in Poland, he told Croman after the third incident that he was contacting Uber to have him banned from using the service. Last Sunday, though, Zawada says that Croman used his friend’s phone to request a pick-up. “(The) rider knew from Uber application who is the driver,” Zawada said today on Youtube. “He had option to cancel to avoid any issues but he/they proceeded to abuse, harrase, belittle and provoke like kindergarten thugs.” For what it’s worth, Croman told BuzzFeed News that he too was verbally abused. “Shortly after the verbal altercation, I filed a complaint with the Ann Arbor Police Department and they are now dealing with the issue,” he told them. According to BuzzFeed, though, “An Ann Arbor police spokesperson subsequently told BuzzFeed News they could not locate Croman’s name in their reporting system. Croman said he was unable to immediately provide a case number for his report, saying he was away from school.”

One suspects, if there’s more to it than what we’ve seen in the video clip above, that we’ll know soon enough, seeing as how a few of Croman’s frat brothers also seemed to be recording the incident. In the meantime, I’ll try to keep an open mind, and consider the possibility that Zawada wasn’t completely without blame. That doesn’t, however, in any way mean that Croman was justified in his condescension and use of slurs. Furthermore, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to assume, based on this public display, that this was a one a one-time occurrence for Croman.

Back to the main point of this post, though… I’m just fascinated by how quickly the story took off, and how little time it took from the point when the video first showed up on Reddit and when someone launched the site JakeCroman.com, promising Mr. Croman, “Within hours or days, this website will be the #1 listing on every search engine for your name. Anyone who searches for you anywhere will come here first. You’re fucked.”

As Croman is wealthy works for his father, I doubt this will really impact his life too greatly, but it does make me wonder about the power of the internet to destroy people’s lives, and just how much damage a person can do in 30 seconds.

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  1. Jcp2
    Posted March 28, 2016 at 10:43 pm | Permalink

    If it’s any consolation, Uber suspended both parties from the app. This means the driver loses a source of income while the passenger gets to use a friend’s app. Who’s the winner here?

  2. Taco Farts
    Posted March 28, 2016 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

    We have subverted evolution. This is just a side effect.

    Some of us will scratch the itch for awhile, some of us won’t, and next week a new and grotesque rash will develop in a place we never thought rashes were possible. The underlying issue is not a mystery, but the one part of evolution we haven’t been able to shrug off is fear of mortality. If we go to the doctor, we might get told – in a way we can’t ignore – exactly what is wrong. And that is hugely terrifying. So, instead, itch and move on, monkeys. Itch, and move on.

  3. Peter Larson
    Posted March 28, 2016 at 11:44 pm | Permalink

    I have found that poor people can be assholes, too.

    Personally, I don’t care about rich people. The disdain just doesn’t end. Mr. Maynard was raised in a household that was far better off than the household I was raised in. While it might give me some temporary solace to belittle and publicly ridicule him and complain about his presence in “a once lovely midwestern town” where he makes far more than the median income there, it would be pretty pointless.

    But, I realize that’s not what the post is about.

  4. Peter Larson
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 4:49 am | Permalink

    While not defending the person in question, I think this is an example of the mob mentality we have been witnessing in the United States recently. People are “fed up” and “angry.” The pitchforks have come out and we are after the heads of the “rich” and the “1 percent.” We are out for blood because we have been wronged, either in reality or in our imaginations, looking nostalgically toward a past that may or may not have ever existed.

  5. Jean Henry
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 5:35 am | Permalink

    Making this primarily about wealth inequality is quite a twist. This is about verbal abuse. Croman was caught on taught verbally abusing someone. It was not mutual. The victim (and I feel really comfortable saying that) was not saying anything. Croman referred to his own wealth relative to the victim, because he was demonstrating his power over him. But there are other kinds of power than money and abuses of power unrelated to wealth. Abusive behavior is not particular to any class. It’s fairly evenly spread across all classes.

    I am very okay with the taping of this abuse and police abuse. It seems by far the most effective means of establishing the most basic community consensus about what constitutes abuse. One could choose to see the sharing of the video and website as a reasonable means of agreement about what will not be tolerated. If slanderous, Croman has reasonable legal means to address it. The risk of slander is a price we pay for freedom of speech. It seems well worth it. I do not feel the least bit sorry for Mr. Croman, but I hope he gets help. The Uber driver losing his job for video taping and sharing abuse is absurd. There is a pattern of this behavior towards drivers. Uber needs to step up.

  6. Jean Henry
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 5:55 am | Permalink

    You do have a consistent narrative. Mark, about the evils of wealth and the wealthy. I’m confused then about your considerable engagement in economic development in Ypsi. Is it ok to gentrify, but only just so much? Can one reasonably stop it at some point? Can one build in true inclusion and diversity? (aka not more exclusion than inclusion) Promotion of alternative schools, start ups, small independent businesses started by people not from Ypsi would all seem to pull Ypsi towards Ann Arbor’s current state. That’s how it happened in A2. No one really paid attention until it was too late.

  7. Demetrius
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 6:26 am | Permalink

    People yell at each other and get into ugly altercations every day. What makes this story “news” is the extra dollop of blatant (and publicly visible) contempt this rich, entitled person shows for someone he sees as beneath him economically and socially.

    On one hand, this young, angry a**hole, and his rant wouldn’t amount to much if it weren’t caught on camera. But videotaped, and shared, it seems to tap perfectly into growing national conversation about the rights and obligations of members of different social classes in our country.

  8. Jean Henry
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 7:27 am | Permalink

    If it were a husband berating his teenage son similarly, it should have the same resonance. Part of me thinks hatred for the rich and privileged is their due, because they didn’t pay attention to the impacts of fiscal policies that served them over the needs of others. On the other hand, blinders of privilege works that way at any level. The same kind of scrutiny could bite progressive liberals in the ass, because their cities show the greatest economic and racial segregation and exclusion of any urban areas in the country. At some point the boat is shared. It’s interesting to see so many essentially privileged people believe they are in the boat with the poor when they are not upwardly mobile like their parents. If conditions improve and continue to exclude the ritually excluded while benefiting the educating and white at all income levels (as has happened in progressive cities), they may actually find themselves in the boat with the wealthy when the real revolution occurs. Then Sander supporters booing BLM protesters and yelling ‘English only’ to Spanish speakers won’t seem so benign.

  9. Jcp2
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 7:37 am | Permalink

    Making America great again! Feel the Bern! Let me say that the America that both these people are nostalgic for, with job stability, protectionism, and unionism, was not that great for a lot of people, and America today is far more preferable. The sting of competition and realizing that nobody is inherently special hurts the most the first time it’s felt.

  10. Peter Larson
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    I am probably biased, but I prefer the America of 2016 to the America of 1965.

    But that’s just me… and I wasn’t alive in 1965.

  11. Frosted Flakes
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:08 am | Permalink

    Interesting post. If Croman continues to mouth off he will find himself in situations where he is stripped of his power. He doesn’t exactly have the tough guy body type. The people who bully Croman will employ almost identical language he employed against Zawada.

  12. Denise Heberle
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    OK. Just one great bro story, and another way to handle them: When my girls were at U of M, there was a kid in the dorm who was kind of a jerk and drove a car so schmancy that he had to park it – I don’t know – in Saline? And take a cab to get it when he wanted to use it. The vanity plates had the Block M, followed by his name, Anthony. So certain people just started calling him “Manthony.” Sweet, simple, gets the point across.

  13. Nick Roumel
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    I see his frat is supposedly investigating. Does anyone know if UM (OSCR/Code) is opening a case?

  14. Jay Steichmann
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    I am pretty sure that everything OSCR is confidential. They would neither confirm or deny as far as I know. The AAPD can and often will disclose that an incident was filed without disclosing anything confidential. That said, the steps would be for the dean referred to in the story to turn it over to OSCR if they thought it was worth mediation. If not turned over then the two possibilities I can come up with is that they either have plans to encourage him to transfer (like to the SUNY outpost in sunny Oswego, NY or maybe Plattsburg) or they don’t think it is worth the hassle–like, if the Uber driver’s side of previous encounters can’t be substantiated or if daddy Cromer dispatches a squadron of lawyers from Gabriel, Garcia, & Marquez (they handle cases with high degrees of magical realism).

  15. Jean Henry
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    “Manthony” would not have stopped this guy. I’m kind of amazed that people don’t recognize the stance and affect of an abuser beyond self- control. Count yourselves lucky, if that’s the case.

  16. Jules
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    Poor rich, young Croman. He looks like he’s had hair transplants already at his young age and poor thing can’t even come up with a decent insult. “I’m gonna go sit on my ass and watch TV”. Bahhhhhh hahahaha! Seriously, tears of laughter here. Boy, you lead quite an envious life, rich boy. What a burn. I’ll bet the Uber driver NEVER gets to sit on his ass and watch TV.

  17. anonmous
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    article write: The elder Croman is currently under investigation for possibly using illegal tactics to force out rent-stabilized tenants.]

    my comment:
    actually the elder Croman attacked victim were not only rent stabilized tenants. it is rent stabilized, rent control, section8, any age , any sex, any nationalities, the sick, the disabled, the high/middle/low income and tenant of other landlord using their home to claim it belong to his tenant as their 2nd home. These victim also include accusing and making return comeback ongoing peeking and monitoring to see what other loopholes he can find to make comeback to use it to play court. His victim also included private owner, landlord of private and government subsidy building (accusing these landlord illegally renting to croman tenant and government fraud for reporting croman tenant name into the housing dept whether nyc nys or fed controlled as their tenant to hold a 2nd apt). Croman have been seen also taking business activity from building he do not own or manages and uses employees and different attorney who such a sucker to accept cases to help him try to harass tenant out of their apt and comes in as debt collector claim tenant owes back rent when he really have bank deposit to these rent ledger filed into court to attempt to use lawyer to collect is really false claim. Croman also uses in house employees to pick victim to attack and returns rent checks with letter claim refused follow by bringing in new innocent lawyers and law firm to represent them to attack these tenant. Most tenant have no legal knowledge & cannot afford attorney help and have to suffer when eviction comes. If you watches and have been monitoring Croman business behavior you know anyone who are tenant in nyc whether is Croman victim or not or may be a innocent building owner with no relation to Croman they can be a victim of being in court record with accuse of apt renting business activity fraud or doing illegal activity thanks to Croman. The court needs to investigate all their court cases and put together what Croman is doing – using the court to play his favorite game – tenant eviction. Like EnGrive say in one of their article…eviction happy landlord croman (http://markmaynard.com/2016/03/whys-the-internet-turning-on-jake-croman/comment-page-1/) actually Croman should have another name…..’Neighborhood bully’ because according to village voice 3/1998 he started his eviction/tenant harassment game in the mid 90s from lower manhattan So/Nolita neighborhood and worked around slowly up to east/west village then to gramarcy park, then uptown include hells kitchen area now harlem (http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/exclusive-tenants-landlord-aide-harassing-article-1.2354545). Give it time…the next stop (hope not) will be Bronx, and slowly goes up to the top of Manhattan island. And surprise bank loan is still being approved. As for the innocent victim of Croman that is not his tenant or other nyc building owner who have to stop work and bring out $ for legal fee to fight to clear their innocent of being claim doing fraud real estate activity or need to proof Croman is taking their conducted business activity turning it around for self use to play court whatever it may be the usa justice system (nyc nys federal combine) needs to come forward and recognize this. We need the government help to start a city wide class action lawsuit to stops these nonsense court playing game that has been ongoing for a good 20+ years (croman real estate started in 1990s). Its way too much people and innocent victim being hit already, many suffered enough or died out of it. The worst group is the elderly, those with medical problem, death in the family, disabled etc… all you need to qualify as a croman victim is you are a inherited croman tenant from building purchase, rent a market rate rental apt from him, be a person who is a family member of croman tenant, a caretaker who is a croman tenant and landlord renting to your innocent tenant who has family member or is friend/relative to a Croman tenant….. well, you got the message.

  18. Henry Edward Hardy
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    Nick, there is no case to open here. It is free speech, not a “true threat.”

    However, it doesn’t mean that folks shouldn’t nonviolently picket outside his frat to let them know that the community finds this repulsive and uncool.

  19. Jay Steichmann
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:43 am | Permalink

    I’m not sure of your reference to “no case to open here.” City of Ann Arbor, maybe, but yeah, probably not. U-M OSCR? I refer you to Student Rights & Responsibilities: Responsibilities, S. IV, para. D. “Stalking, harassing, or bullying another person–physically, verbally, or through other means.” Clicking through to “Bullying”: Bullying: (1) to frighten, hurt, or threaten (a smaller weaker person), (2) to act like a bully toward (someone), (3) to cause (someone) to do something by making threats or insults or by using force, (4) to treat abusively, (5) to affect by means of force or coercion.” When the student is in the City of Ann Arbor, the University policies are in full effect as far as OSCR is concerned. If the behavior occurs off campus AND outside of Ann Arbor, then a higher standard of severity of offense is applied. Bottom line: A student of the University of Michigan may cite his right against limitation of free speech, for which the Federal government may not restrict, but as far as his right to act however he wants without reprecussion, that is NOT the U-Mich way, and he will NOT be considered a “Michigan Man.”

  20. Jordan Miller
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    “Mr. Maynard was raised in a household that was far better off than the household I was raised in. While it might give me some temporary solace to belittle and publicly ridicule him and complain about his presence in “a once lovely midwestern town” where he makes far more than the median income there, it would be pretty pointless.”

    Yes, this comment is pointless. So why post it? Did Mark scream at an Uber driver? Did he behave badly in a classless way? Is he a millionaire who scorns the people who provide him with services? Nope. He’s just a nice guy with a blog. So I ask again, what’s the point?

  21. anon
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    So there are two possibilities here:
    A) Artur Zawada is a racist but somehow despite the fact that he is manages to have a 4.8 rating after 2600 rides with, considering that he drives in Ann Arbor Michigan a fairly diverse community, many Jewish and other ethnicities in his car. If this is true, that he is a bigot and managed to still get a good rating–although why a bigot would choose to drive the public and do so in a place like Ann Arbor defies logic–if he did though, there must certainly be some form of record of complaints, it cannot be just Jake and this Rebecca Youtube commenter.
    A further, fly in the ointment is that, this claim is the ONLY way Jake Croman comes out of this not labeled a piece of shit. He says it then claims to have called the police, but it turns out that he did not, when pressed he cannot verify that he did. So, this was a lie. It suggests that his other claim of racism for Artur is also a lie.

    B) It is far more likely that this kid, after it blows up, decides to play the Jewish card, knowing it is the only way to save himself, without admitting that he is garbage. But he has no proof, there were 4 witnesses though, if the driver did indeed say this, then they will be able to testify that he did. However, at this point it seems that the apple doesn’t fall too far from the tree and that the son of a slum lord is a chip of the old block: a poor hating scum bag.

  22. josh
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    “We are out for blood because we have been wronged, either in reality or in our imaginations, looking nostalgically toward a past that may or may not have ever existed.”

    Complete bullshit. It is not our imaginations. http://currydemocrats.org/in_perspective/income_distribution_over_time.jpg

    The calls for polite discourse are embarrassingly servile. There is nothing polite about capitalism as Steve Croman demonstrates.

    Pitchforks are underrated.

  23. G.
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    dear god. i just fell down a rabbit hole and read the comments on this “proud frat boy” site, proving pretty unequivocally that despite the authors attempt to ague otherwise, #yesallfratboys.


  24. Josh
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    People used to not act like this because they would face public consequences. This is just the hi-tech version living in a small town. Globalization back to living in a small town. People shouldn’t treat other people like this, this guy reaped what he sowed.

  25. Steve P
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    Jake Croman is just a convenient proxy for our near-universal dislike for Donald Trump and the Trump sons in these parts…loutish, New Yorkish, entitled…thus, he’s despicable and hated by nearly everyone, but gets major news coverage.

    He also looks disalarmingly like Johnny Manziel…

    I differ in thinking that this incident “ruined” his life. He’ll shrug it off and in years to come it become something of a punchline for him and his friends as he carries on with his rich person’s life. The only real change would happen if it made him re-examine his value system and become a man of God, an altruist, social worker, or something more dedicated to the commonweal. I doubt Croman will develop in those ways.

  26. Lennie
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    Apparently Croman’s story doesn’t add up. There is no denial that he used somebody else’s account to schedule a ride. But since the Uber driver recognized him from the past, he refused to drive him. Croman also claim that he was insulted and that he reported that. Nobody can find any record of that report. What a sad state of affairs that a punk living off parents treats others so poorly yet thinks he can lie his way out of his own mistakes.

  27. XXX
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 11:13 am | Permalink


  28. Steve Fraser
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    This is a “teachable moment.” May Mr. Croman’s a-hole behavior be a lesson to young people around the world.

  29. Steve P
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    There should be a reality tv show that gets all the college ne’er do wells — the KKK frat, the ski lodge bros, Cro-magnon Man and his Bros… together on an island managed by a fascist dictatorship and they fight to the death until only one survives and can bring food back to his hometown so that people there can survive.

    Oh wait, they already did that in The Hunger Games.

  30. Geoff Larcom
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    Fascinating topic, and certainly a new dynamic in our world. Thanks for the analysis.

  31. Frosted Flakes
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

    I think there might be something wrong with me. I smiled inside every time I thought about Croman’s prideful delivery of the line: “I am going to go sit my ass and watch tv.” He was so perfectly self satisfied when he said it…

  32. Demetrius
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    @ Jean

    Yesterday, you accused me of “constantly shaming others’ points of view” and “always assuming the worst in people,” yet you never seem to miss an opportunity to unfairly bash Bernie Sanders supporters – belittling them as “Bernie Bros” or alluding to ” … Sanders supporters booing BLM protesters and yelling ‘English only’ to Spanish speakers …”

    As I’ve said before, I don’t know if these things happened or not, but if they did, they hardly seem typical or representative of the many Bernie supporters I know – and I’m certain that he would disavow this type of behavior if he knew about it.

    I’m not a Hillary fan, but I assume the overwhelming majority of her supporters are thoughtful, reasonable people. If there are a few bad apples among them, I certainly would never attempt to use it to an advantage, or try to lead people to believe that was the norm.

  33. Dan
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    There has to be more to this story. MLive now reporting that the weasel kid actually did file a police report, PRIOR to the report filed by the driver. Also, although not surprisingly, the kid is already setting up a lawsuit against the driver.


  34. Angela Kline
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

    When I was a bartender in college the Frat crowd was the worst…they verbally assaulted me nightly, sexually harassed any female in eye sight and physically fought anyone they could.

    One night a group of them followed me home from work at 3 am walking behind and threatening to rape me…their behavior was so common and accepted I never even thought to call the cops.

    A year later a frat boy I worked at a coffee shop with leaned down and bit me (that’s right bit me!) on my thigh as hard as he could during a shift in front of everyone…as crumpled in pain no one did anything. My boss said “boys will be boys” and fired me for complaining….this incident was reported to the cops and EEOC but nothing happened to the frat boy or the business.

    This behavior is perpetrated against women and minorities daily by the good old frat boys.
    That’s why this is resonating with the nation.
    We’re all sick of bullies and we’re not going to put up with it anymore.

  35. John Galt
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    This is a great man. The kind of man Ayn Rand would have loved. He’s not afraid of you. he understands power and how to wield it. While lesser men toil in their minimum wage jobs, he drinks with other true men, calling Uber drivers to taunt, and likely hollering at women. My hope is that when Trump takes over this country he makes this heroic young man Viceroy of Ann Arbor.

  36. Jason Voss
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

    The video is somewhat extreme and very succinct, but the behaviour is not an anomaly at all. This is the dominant culture at UM, and it is actively encouraged by the Greek system, the University, businesses in Ann Arbor and the real estate developers. I’m surprised that it has gone viral, but once again somewhat shocked by Mark’s perspective. This behavior shouldn’t be shocking to anyone who has spent time in Ann Arbor.

  37. Jean Henry
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

    Demetrius– you are nothing if not consistent. Both incidents were widely reported, one at at Seattle rally the other at a Nevada caucus site with a celebrity in attendance. Neither were isolated events. If people in Camp Sanders would manage within their own community the misogynists and bernie bros, they would not be an issue for discussion. But what I hear are defenses of the coded language and double standards at work and/or assertions that those people do not represent our view point. When Gloria Steinem and Madeleine Albright f’d up and made unthinking sexist remarks, they were called out by you all, but also by Camp Hillary an her campaign offices and both were asked to publicly apologize and did so. There have been no apologies or acknowledgement form camp Bernie. Bernie at one point said, “if it’s happening, cut it out.” Once. No one has cut it out and he continues to speak of HRC as though she is uniquely corrupt rather than uniquely scrutinized. And that seeds suspicion and paranoia that allows his followers to run with the idea and perpetrate a new school witch hunt. It’s not new. She was subjected to this stuff in ’08. “Wanna see Hillary run? Throw rocks at her.” and the right has been hammering at her for decades. It’s really unfortunate. I realize most Bernie supporters can not see it in their own ranks. I speak up because it’s important to learn to recognize bias. What I’m saying, to be clear, as I have had to say it many times, is not that Bernie’s supporters are sexist. It’s that they are not anti-sexist. Tacit approval is present in inaction and denial. I’m expecting those conversations to open up in the general . You will all see it if Trump runs against Hillary. Then you will no doubt decry it with as much certainty as you deny in in Camp Sanders. Belief has a powerful distortion effect on the truth. I’m telling you it is pervasive in Sanders land. You can choose to not believe me. I don’t really care. I’m going to keep talking about it anyway. Because that’s what true progressives do when they encounter bias implicit or outright. Awareness is the first step to incremental change, which is how it always happens when it lasts. It doesn’t happen within cultural denial. And denial is the other side of belief. It’s a powerful force. I don’t underestimate it.

  38. Jean Henry
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

    Angela– I’m so sorry. That’s horrible. And not uncommon. Someone should start a forum for women to tell these stories. I have a list of customer abuse several pages long. I’ve had food thrown at me by male customers 5 times. Usually after I rejected an advance of some kind.That’s really the least of it, but it’s a thing. really common. Men will no doubt be shocked.

    I have a story for you that may help. Many years ago I worked at the Common Grill as a waitperson. Waitstaff had to go through the prep line to get to the walk-in for cold back-ups like cream etc several times a shift. The prep staff were young men and serial gropers. We complained repeatedly. Management did not see it. They told me maybe I should go back to Ann Arbor where such ‘bellyaching’ was tolerated. A new waitress, just 16, was followed into the walk-in and groped aggressively by a repeat offender. An older waitress with some miles under her belt and a history of childhood abuse (but “NOT a feminist”), decided she had had enough and took matters into her own hands. She marched back there, went up to the asshole and said ‘I need to talk to you.’ He ignored her, so she grabbed him by the nuts and lifted, and then walked him, by the nuts, back through the line and out the back door. She pushed him up against the wall, squeezed hard and said, “If you or any other cooks EVER touch her or any other waitress like that again, I’ll tell everyone just how small your dick is.” And that was the end of it. She was not fired. Not sure why. She was local and well known. And I think she solved a problem for management.

    I wish someone had the temerity to do that for you. I think things are improving in kitchens thanks to awareness and sexual harassment protections. Certainly, the ability to record abuse can’t hurt. It’s not just frat boys. But there’s no question frats and frat boys are repeat offenders. It just seems like an abusive culture all around.

    More cameras = More exposure. Good. This seems a situation in which shaming is appropriate.

  39. Demetrius
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    @ Jean Henry

    Many of us don’t support Hillary because she voted for the Iraq War (even though many at the time knew it was disastrous mistake), has coddled big Wall Street firms (while accepting campaign donations and speaking fees from them), has championed pro-corporate and anti-worker trade policies (calling TPP the “gold standard”), and was inept as Secretary of State (see Libya).

    To suggest our lack of support is because some of us are sexist (or not sufficiently anti-sexist) is just plain offensive and wrong. Supporting or not supporting a particular candidate because of his or her gender would certainly be wrong … but because of policies and positions? … That’s the essence of politics.

    And, as I’ve said many times before, many of us would enthusiastically support someone like Elizabeth Warren if she ever decides to run.

    ” … it’s important to learn to recognize bias.”

    I couldn’t agree more.

  40. Nick Roumel
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

    More on UM’s OSCR process: it is a violation of the Statement to “bully or harass” someone verbally. A complaint may be initiated only by a “student, faculty member, or staff member.” However, “A student, faculty member, or staff member may also submit a complaint based upon information reported to that person.” Also, “Behavior which occurs in the city of Ann Arbor, on University controlled property, or at University sponsored events/programs may violate the Statement.” So theoretically, a person connected with UM could make a complaint even without the cooperation of the driver. Whether UM will act on it is another matter.

    As for confidentiality, we would know if the driver or other complainant told the public, but we wouldn’t know from OSCR.

  41. Jean Henry
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

    Arggh! “What I’m saying, to be clear, as I have had to say it many times, is not that Bernie’s supporters are sexist. It’s that they are not anti-sexist. ”

    I can’t believe you are making me say it again. Seriously. Every time I mention sexism among some Sanders supporters, someone who supports him says ‘it’s not sexist to support Sanders.” Not what I said. I said the opposite You all really need to look at the defensiveness though, because it’s just weird at this point.

    Also, seriously, everyone feels a need to prove they aren’t sexist by citing Elizabeth Warren as someone they would support. Mark did that too. So did at least 5 other men.

    What you haven’t said yet is, “I’m a feminist; I can’t be sexist.” Thank you for not saying that.

    I am not calling you sexist– I am calling you and many other men really weirdly defensive now. I think that defensiveness in some way prevents you from dealing proactively with the people who are sexist in your camp– to the detriment of the campaign I think. Certainly to the detriment of women generally. I give up. I can’t write the same stuff over and over anymore. you all win.

    PS I’m crystal on why you all don’t like Hillary. How could I not be? Sanders Camp as very clear reductive talking points, oft repeated. It’s just like Reagan but on the Left. What is in there for sure is that you all hold no responsibility. As long as your position is correct, you can hold no responsibility for outcomes.

  42. Jean Henry
    Posted March 29, 2016 at 7:52 pm | Permalink


  43. Posted March 29, 2016 at 8:30 pm | Permalink

    “I’m confused then about your considerable engagement in economic development in Ypsi. Is it ok to gentrify, but only just so much? Can one reasonably stop it at some point? Can one build in true inclusion and diversity? (aka not more exclusion than inclusion) Promotion of alternative schools, start ups, small independent businesses started by people not from Ypsi would all seem to pull Ypsi towards Ann Arbor’s current state. That’s how it happened in A2. No one really paid attention until it was too late.” -Jean

    Sorry you’re confused, Jean. I’ll see if I can clarify… Here, before we get started, are just a few facts for you to consider. 1. Ypsilanti is on the brink of financial collapse and has been for some time. Thanks to our City Council and people within the City, who have refinanced bonds and cut City services to the bone, we’ve been able to delay it thus far, but, make no mistake, we’re in line for an Emergency Manager. If we don’t significantly increase our tax base, the State will take us over, and none of us wants that. We’ve seen what has happened in Flint, and elsewhere, and we’d rather control our own destiny. 2. A good number of my friends in Ypsilanti don’t work in Ypsilanti, as there aren’t jobs. 3. Our schools are struggling. In part because of policies in Ann Arbor, we’ve been steadily losing students over the past decade or more. After several rounds of consolidation, we now have six empty school buildings.

    So, yes, I’m supportive of local people starting ventures and creating jobs. And, yes, I’m supportive of our public school system trying new things, and attracting families back to the district. And, yes, I’m going into a huge amount of debt to buy a nearly-vacant building in downtown Ypsi, in part because I think it could be a good thing for the city. (I also happen to think that we can do it without losing money, but it’s a gamble.)

    Now, just a few corrections… When you mention my “promotion of alternative schools” I just want to be clear that the school in question is a public school operated by Ypsilanti Community Schools. As for your comment about my promoting “small independent businesses started by people not from Ypsi,” are you referring to Beezy’s? I suppose I’ve promoted others, but that’s the only business that I can think of off the top of my head started by someone who wasn’t originally from here that I often say good things about. But, yeah, given what Bee’s done for our community, I’d love to have ten more of her. So I’m not going to apologize for promoting her place, even though she was living in Ann Arbor before moving here.

    But let’s say your right, Jean. Let’s say that everything we do is leading to gentrification… Should we stop trying to make our schools better, as better schools might attract people to Ypsi? Should we stop supporting our local businesses, as doing so just creates opportunities for people to live and work here? What would you suggest? Should we board up our storefronts and vow never to improve our schools? Should Jesse and I not buy this building that we’re interested it and borrow the money to save it before the roof collapses? What would you have us do, Jean?

    I’m really not sure I get your point. It sounds as though you’re saying I shouldn’t have an opinion on wealth inequality or the antics of the super-rich because I want to see jobs created in Ypsilanti. And, if so, that’s just silly. Buying a building to create spaces for local filmmakers and graphic designers, while ensuring that the local barber on the ground floor can keep his space, is not the same as kicking out local businesses to build high-rise condos for the Croman set. If it makes people in Ann Arbor feel better about themselves to say that folks in Ypsi are doing the same thing, and sliding down the same slippery slope, that’s great. I’d like to think, however, that some of us here are a little more thoughtful in our approach.

    Posted March 29, 2016 at 10:02 pm | Permalink

    When New York City sends its rich kids to the University of Michigan, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing hostile disrespect toward regular working people. They’re bringing homophobic slurs and general entitled douchebag behavior. They’re date rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.

  45. Jean Henry
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 4:07 am | Permalink

    I hope so too. I did not mean yo denigrate your work, and certainly not Bee’s (you have promoted plenty of new businesses, as you should.) I meant to suggest that ‘hope’ is inadequate if one wants to be truly inclusive. Ann Arbor’s DDA was started in the 70’s for many of the reasons you mention. Downtown was dying do to sprawls and malls. That was a long time ago, but no body was worried about gentrification or time-limited affordable housing developments then The numbers in that Times/Harvard study you covered showed that progressive base cities are very good at improving the prosperity and desirability of their cities, but really really bad at being inclusive in the process, Minneapolis being a noted exception.) No one was trying to exclude the poor and people of color but it happened anyway.”It sounds as though you’re saying I shouldn’t have an opinion on wealth inequality or the antics of the super-rich because I want to see jobs created in Ypsilanti” Nope I’m saying that being against ‘wealth inequality or the antics of the super rich’.is not the same as implementing wealth equality and inclusivity. There is a track record of progressive cities having good intentions and shitty results for those most in need. It’s worth exploring that more. But critical self-examination and political belief appear to be diametrically opposed these days. At any rate, I support your work an always have. Asking hard questions is a way to do that, believe it or not.

  46. Jean Henry
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 5:00 am | Permalink

    Demetrius– 6 & 7 http://www.newyorker.com/humor/daily-shouts/the-bernie-bro-code

  47. Demetrius
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 6:27 am | Permalink

    @ Jean

    Not that long ago, all serious candidates for President were White Christian men. Now, we have major contenders who are Women, Black, Hispanic – even an old Jewish man. I consider this a positive development.

    That said, people tend to gravitate toward and support candidates (or not) for a variety of reasons … so why are you so “hell bent” on denigrating this one particular group?

    In reference to the article … perhaps some “Bernie Bros” feel compelled to point out how they would support someone like Elizabeth Warren in a defensive way – because people like you are always trying to equate their support for Bernie with sexism (or insufficient anti-sexism), etc.

    Here’s a newsflash: I didn’t support Cruz or Rubio – but it ain’t because they’re Hispanic. I didn’t support Ben Carson – but it ain’t because he’s Black. And I don’t support Hillary … well, you get the drift.

    If you think your candidate’s policies and positions are superior, that’s fine … but trying to cast Bernie (and his supporters) as racist, sexist, etc. (especially when there is so much genuine racism and sexism among the Republican field) to gain an advantage for your preferred candidate is just cynical and offensive.

    Bottom line: I think much of this posturing is just a smokescreen for the fact that Hillary is an unpopular candidate who has low approval ratings, and is judged as “untrustworthy” by a shockingly high number of voters. She lost Michigan in a huge upset, and has been losing a steady stream of caucuses and primaries lately … but instead of recognizing her legitimate flaws as a candidate, people like you are trying to “shame” those of us who don’t support her by crying “sexism” and “racism.” At this point, it is starting to seem like desperate misdirection …

  48. Meta
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 7:20 am | Permalink

    MLive: “Police say U-M student, Uber driver both filed reports — but not initially about anti-gay or ethnic slurs”

    Read more:

  49. Peter Larson
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 7:46 am | Permalink

    “people like you are trying to “shame” those of us who don’t support her by crying “sexism” and “racism.” At this point, it is starting to seem like desperate misdirection …”

    I could care less if you support Clinton or vote for her.

    Sanders’ status as a perfect demigod is far more troubling.

  50. Frosted Flakes
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    After watching this video many times, I do think it worth noticing and pointing out that Croman’s friends, although showing initial support, for the most part backed off when Croman started swearing and when he used the word “faggot”. You could see disapproval in some of their body language and they pretty much all started to walk away immediately. The one young guy with sunglasses seemed to want to tell Croman to “stop” during his rant. The picture that Mark chose to freeze frame at the top of this page is great because it makes Croman look like a total goofball, however, after reviewing the video, I realized that it is unfair to include his companions in the photo. They seem to only be supportive of the”surprise” moment when the driver drove up. It is very likely that they were not aware of the actual backstory between the driver and Croman and it is clear that they were not aware of, nor in approval of, what Croman said. Given that this post explores the topic of “instant justice” of the internet, and the dangers of it, it seems pretty insensitive to include the friends in the photo.

  51. Peter Larson
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 8:17 am | Permalink

    It does not matter. The man in question and his friends are “rich” and thus deserving of public hanging without trial.

  52. kjc
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    “Belief has a powerful distortion effect on the truth. I’m telling you it is pervasive in Sanders land. You can choose to not believe me. I don’t really care. ”

    because you believe it so strongly right? powerful distortion effect.

    more on the constant misrepresentation of bernie supporters:


  53. Peter Larson
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    Regarding Sanders’ supporters, I can only go by what I see in my Facebook feed, but from what I can tell, there’s not much misrepresentation going on at all.

    It’s quite odd to me.

  54. Lynne
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 11:46 am | Permalink

    RE: sexism in politics.

    Honestly, I think a lot of it is implicit and subtle and that is often why it is so difficult to discuss. People make sexist decisions all of the time without realizing it.

    For instance, in politics, if you poll American voters, nearly 100% of them will say that they have no problem voting for a woman. However, in practice, when faced with two candidates of equal qualification, most will choose the man. If faced with two candidates where one is more qualified than the other, then people will pick the woman if she is the more qualified one. So this is why, I dont really buy the “I would vote for Elizabeth Warren” defense.

    I am totally a Bernie supporter but I see lots of subtle things I often think are sexist being directed at Hillary, but am also pretty sure that the person who wrote it has no idea that sexism might be behind their opinion. And of course, not being a mind reader, I cant really know either.

    However as an example, I often see people say unfair things about her which I know are untrue such as suggesting that she wasnt a good SOS because of Libya. My brother’s job is to audit government programs and his specialty is international relations. He audits State all of the time and has visited several embassies to assess how they do things. He worked on the report that so many cite when saying that the Libya is an example of Clinton’s incompetence as SOS. So when *he* says she was not incompetent or at least not more incompetent than any other SOS, it makes me wonder of sexism is the reason that particular bit of mud is sticking to her so much.

  55. kjc
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    “Regarding Sanders’ supporters, I can only go by what I see in my Facebook feed, but from what I can tell, there’s not much misrepresentation going on at all.”

    oh ok. cuz your fb feed. lol.

  56. Demetrius
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    @ Lynn

    Just to be clear, when I suggested that Hillary Clinton failed re: Libya, I wasn’t referring to the right-wing Benghazi smear … (which I agree is largely unfounded, and politically motivated.)

    Instead, I was referring to the fact that she was a chief proponent of taking out the dictator Ghaddaffi, without thinking through the consequences. Evil as he was, he was pretty much the only thing holding the country together. Now, the country has devolved into sectarian warfare, and is becoming another refuge for ISIS, etc.

    Despite all that, I’ll say again: What some seem to be suggesting is that if a male politician is criticized, it is fair game because it is because of policies, etc. … but if a woman in an equivalent position is criticized, it is somehow the result of (or tinged with) subtle sexism.

  57. Jean Henry
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    Just heard a show on NPR yesterday about the Tunisian revolution. tunisians were heartbroken that we didn’t help them out like we did the Libyans. Any policy that is actually implemented in the Middle East (and I mean ANY) will look like a failure from most angles. There are no good answers. After Libya and Clinton’s time as SOS, we did not intercede in Syria. We adopted a policy of no policy in hopes that our allies would step in. And that was a bigger disaster– both humanitarian and in terms of facilitating the growth of ISIL. Americans on the left have become willful idiots about foreign policy. They don’t want to know. It’s too hard. They are for peace. They think all the US does it make matters worse. It;s a convenient narrative. Sanders doesn’t even have a foriegn polciy team. the few people he amed as advisors had spoken to him once. None said they had been hired to advise. We created a firestorm with our invasion of Iraq. And we made a lot of messes that caused a lot of harm. We need to do what we can to clean it up. They all want more from us not less. And yes they will continue blaming us for their problems when politically expedient. We still need to do it.

  58. Peter Larson
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    ““Regarding Sanders’ supporters, I can only go by what I see in my Facebook feed, but from what I can tell, there’s not much misrepresentation going on at all.”
    oh ok. cuz your fb feed. lol.”

    Given that I don’t live in the United States, I don’t have much to work from. But given that the people on my FB feed are real human beings, I think that it has to be taken somewhat seriously. Many of them are actively campaigning for Sanders, are heavily involved, but still guilty of many of the charges levied at them.

    I’m sorry I offend you so frequently. Don’t worry, I am nearly 50. I will be dead soon.

  59. Peter Larson
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    “Yes, this comment is pointless. So why post it? Did Mark scream at an Uber driver? Did he behave badly in a classless way? Is he a millionaire who scorns the people who provide him with services? Nope. He’s just a nice guy with a blog. So I ask again, what’s the point?”

    The point is that it is irrelevant how much money this person has. The person in question is simply an idiot. To make this about class, is just kind of pointless in my opinion. There are plenty of people out there who have lots of money who don’t behave like this. And there are plenty of people out there who don’t have any money who do.

    Actually, if there were a video of some really poor guy out there screaming obscenities and calling people homosexuals, people would probably blame capitalism or some nonsense and come to the guy’s defense. That’s where the US is at right now.

  60. jcp2
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    You mean the panhandler that constantly harrasses passerbys near the Diag?

  61. Peter Larson
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    Yes, it is all the fault of global capitalism. He can’t be held accountable for his actions.

  62. Demetrius
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    “We created a firestorm with our invasion of Iraq.”

    Yes, and and that’s why those who voted to authorize that (deadly) firestorm have no business being President.

  63. Jean Henry
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

    That’s ‘Crutchy.’ (I forget his real name) Rumor has it that he’s not homeless. He owns a house somewhere, and he’s just scamming everybody. And/or that he’s an addict. He harasses people, they say. (None is really true, but he does have an assisted living apartment and disability benefits that would be cut if he made any income. And he hustles hard; he’s not invisible, but he doesn’t follow people around. He really likes to hear and tell dirty jokes, but only with men.) So no they don’t make excuses for the poor in their own backyard.

    One of the interesting dynamics of Washtenaw County politics is how progressive people are in theory– in national politics, in stating their beliefs/principles in matters of social justice– at safe distance form any personal cost. As the focus draws closer to home though, you will hear a lot of excuses, a lot of poverty policing — wealth-splaining how the poor could do better if they just… Or the expression of anxiety about being duped by the poor. There’s a general discomfort with and suspicion of the poor who are near them. I knew local people who were eager to support Ferguson and even talked of going there in support, but who said not a word about Aura Rosser. I just gave a high school Senior a ride to track practice. He has attended three different A2 high schools abd is dual enrolled in two now, while playing sports at the third. He lives in Ypsi. We were discussing differences between the schools. We got to demographics. He said, ‘it’s really hard to know, there are poor people everywhere, but they try to hide it at all the schools. The ones I know really work hard to not let anyone find out.’

    Yeah, we’re a community very concerned about wealth disparity that manages to stigmatize both the rich and the poor and doesn’t really want either of them anywhere near us.

    Some people are abusive assholes. Some people are generous, decent, hard working people who don’t treat others like shit. Most of us have biases we’d rather not explore and do things that cause other people pain that we’d rather ignore. None of these qualities are class-specific.

    I have noted a rise in defensiveness about any discussion of bias as the presidential race heats up. I believe that’s hinged to the degree of righteousness and paranoia inherent to populist campaigns or populism tinged campaign strategies. You can believe otherwise. Demetrius is right. This is an amazing election cycle in terms of who is running and on what platforms. There is a disruption happening. It won’t all be positive or negative. Hard to know how far it will go, but a lot of weird stuff is being churned up. Much is being revealed. Many are not interested in seeing what’s revealed. It’s a good time to examine what’s underneath the surface of who we think we are and how we think we are.

  64. Demetrius
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    @ Peter

    Viewers and commenters aren’t the ones who made this about wealth and social class. The assaultive a*sshole in the video … who tried to use his affluence (and his target’s assumed lack of it) as a weapon to demean his victim is the one who made it the focal point.

  65. Jean Henry
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

    Demetrius– It is no longer 2003. I voted for the Dem who actually has a foreign policy. The one with more foreign policy experience than any presidential candidate in recent memory. The one who acknowledges that support of the war was a mistake. The one who can acknowledge a mistake and does so regularly and asks the same of her supporters, even celebrities, even other past secretaries of state. I voted for the person I believe will cause the fewest dead people, minimal displacement and destruction of people at home and abroad–all lives weighted equally. The candidate who has actually worked for decades to improve the wellbeing of women and children here and abroad. The one who risked her reputation to establish positive diplomatic relations with some questionable characters. the one who seen the impacts and has been held accountable for her policy decisions abroad. Not the one who stayed in Vermont and ranted about corruption and peace.

  66. kjc
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

    as angela davis noted on democracy now the other day, after viewing the video of the teenage protester confronting hillary “why don’t you go run for something” clinton, all she had to say was “i was wrong.” but she didn’t have time to gather herself and pretend to be remorseful. hillary has always been fake as fuck. jean’s version of her is based on drinking some serious kool-aid. but from such a priggish commentator, i’m not surprised.

  67. Frosted Flakes
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

    KJC, the problem is Williams did not want a thoughtful and truthful response. If Williams wanted a thoughtful response she would have a) let Hillary respond in the moment without interrupting; and b) not accused Hillary of saying things she never said.

  68. ha. ha.
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    C’mon Mark, you don’t “wonder about the power of the Internet to destroy people lives.” You just wanted to pile on this douchebag and his (most excellent, I admit) act of public self-destruction, do your part to perpetuate his downfall, and piggyback on the attention the incident is getting.

    I know you too well.

    (Keep it up though, this dickhead deserves it.)

  69. charlieRomeo
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 11:28 pm | Permalink

    The video looks like a typical skirmish in a class warfare confrontation. The hunt club brat from NY is pissed off because the working class clown driving for Uber refuses to give him a ride and basically tells him to fuck off. That sends the country club brat from NY into a profanity laced tirade. The ruling class punk has had his sense of entitlement outraged. His expectation that he should be able to buy anything his money can buy has been disappointed, so he throws a temper tantrum.

  70. Peter Larson
    Posted March 30, 2016 at 11:39 pm | Permalink

    “Viewers and commenters aren’t the ones who made this about wealth and social class. The assaultive a*sshole in the video … who tried to use his affluence (and his target’s assumed lack of it) as a weapon to demean his victim is the one who made it the focal point.”

    Perhaps. A poor person who screamed at the driver and claimed “I’m from the streets, fuck you, you rich asshole” would be, too. People would, of course, refrain from criticizing the individual and blame global capitalism.

    We have moved to a p0int where people want to see everything through a lens of class resentment.

    I know class resentment well because I’m guilty of it. I grew up poor and have deep resentments toward middle class people, even those I call friends. I don’t like it, particularly after experiencing what its like to be on top. It’s a pointless battle.

  71. Demetrius
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    @ Peter

    The rich and powerful are certainly lucky to have you standing up for them. Without you, they would be merciless against the dirty throngs of poor and middle-class rabble.

  72. Jean Henry
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 7:06 am | Permalink

    Nothing will knock Demetrius off his narrative… ever. It must feel so good to stand up against the man as an advocate for the downtrodden. The rest of us are clearly ethically and morally inferior.

  73. Frosted Flakes
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    Wow Demetrius. You really don’t understand what Peter is trying to say at all do you.

  74. Jean Henry
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 7:44 am | Permalink

    kjc– I saw that clip and then watched the whole exchange. Here is what I saw. The young woman came up, identified herself as Somali American, and asked HRC what she would do to address a lack of diversity in down ticket political representation. HRC detailed her commitment to diversity and inclusion and her track record on listening to diverse communities and representing their interests and advocating for down ticket candidates. (Her support of crime bill legislation came at the request of poor communities of color BTW) The women pressed on. Hillary cited a local representative who is Somali American. The young woman said he was not ‘authentic’ (ie ‘fake as fuck’) So HRC said well we are not in agreement then, and suggested the young woman run for office herself– aka representational democracy 101. I don’t agree with you, you should run for office. THAT part is the clip distributed without context far and wide as indicative of how HRC doesn’t listen– out of context with a dash of tone policing. So, to be clear, she suggested the woman run for office herself because the question cut out was about down ticket candidates.
    I’m not sure what Angela Davis felt HRC needed to apologize for during that exchange. Please clarify kjc.
    As for down ticket candidates and representation, what HRC didn’t say for feel of furthr=er alienating tender Sanders believers, is that Sanders has never in his political career ever supported a down ticket Dem candidate. Ever. He doesn’t do any elections but his own. So he will not be of much help in gaining this young woman the ‘authentic’ representation she seeks.

  75. Jean Henry
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 7:49 am | Permalink

    Re priggish. That seems like one of those words that one uses only when being the same. I’m just here positing my viewpoint like everyone else. I ask a lot of questions. I should probably just form them as questions from now on. I’m not sure of anything I say. If I was sure I wouldn’t put my thoughts out in the world and subject them to scrutiny.

  76. Pete Larson
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    Wow, demetrius, i am sorry i cant make my point clear enough. I will work on that.

  77. Frosted Flakes
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    Jean, I am pretty sure KJC was referring to the discussion on “democracy now” with Angela Davis about the Ashley William’s protest that involved Williams interrupting Clinton and asking Clinton for an apology to “black people” for calling ” black youth superpredators in 1994″. The problem is Clinton did not say that. Williams also asked Clinton to apologize to “black people for mass incarceration”. The problem is Williams was not actually interested in whether or not Clinton regrets 90’s policys that led to increased incarceration…She just wanted to portray Clinton as someone who hates black people…This kind of protest ought to be considered a heroic act? We are fucked.

  78. kjc
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    you ask a lot of questions? maybe you shouldn’t phrase them as pronouncements. your lack of self-awareness is sorta shocking, for someone who preens and lectures and derides and then accuses others of the very thing she does so well herself (Demetrius being the latest target). nor do you endure any scrutiny without attack, so i’m not sure what kind of openmindedness you think you’re projecting. no one has ever told you this?? that’s even more shocking. you can be how you want of course, but don’t be surprised if someone finds you insufferable.

    then there’s peter’s sad sack persona with more blah blah disingenousness. i love your music, dude, but your comments are such a waste of energy. it’s like you’re working out some personal pathology. or just fucking bored over in africa.

  79. Peter Larson
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    I am sorry, kjc. I admit that I do have psychological issues. Most days, I am close to being dead. It is a daily struggle. I don’t expect sympathy, but I do have good days and bad days.

    I appreciate that you like my music. Thank you.

    If you don’t like my comments, though, you don’t have to read them. I don’t like them either, to be honest.

  80. Jason Voss
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    Y’all (or maybe just Jean Henry) are getting your HRC gaffe/retractions mixed up. This is the one that Angela Davis was talking about:

    ASHLEY WILLIAMS: I’m not a superpredator, Hillary Clinton.

    HILLARY CLINTON: OK, fine. We’ll talk about it.

    ASHLEY WILLIAMS: Can you apologize to black people for mass incarceration?

    HILLARY CLINTON: Well, can I talk? OK, and then maybe you can listen to what I say.

    ASHLEY WILLIAMS: Yes, yes, absolutely.

    HILLARY CLINTON: OK, fine. Thank you very much. There’s a lot of issues, a lot of issues in this campaign. […]

    ASHLEY WILLIAMS: I know that you called black youth superpredators in 1994. Please explain your record. Explain it to us. You owe black people an apology.

    HILLARY CLINTON: Well, I’ll tell you what, if you will give me a chance to talk, I’ll—I’ll tell you something. You know what? Nobody’s ever asked me before. You’re the first person to ask me, and I’m happy to address it, but you are the first person to ask me, dear. Um, OK, back to the issues.


  81. Jean Henry
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    Different exchange. That was in Charlotte and Hillary did not tell her to run for office. Her name was Ashley Williams. HRC was trying to provide context and did apologize later for the ’94 statement– which was only said once. Bernie has never apologized for being asked to speak to racial justice and talking about how he couldn’t understand what it’s like to live in ghettoes. As though all Black people live in ghettoes and the problem is purely economic. And you all didn’t ask him to apologize and neither did camp Hillary. Hillary apologizes constantly. It will never be enough. What is happening in Camp Sanders is a form of gaslighting. Nothing she says or anyone else says has any credulity. It’s liberal fundamentalism.

    kjc was referring to this one.


    here is a relatively non-partisan run down of the exchange: http://www.buzzfeed.com/rubycramer/super-predator-comment-creates-another-tense-moment-for-hill#.igmDjOyr2

    HRC’s tone is one of frustration, true. I think we all have been there when our record and intentions are maligned and our points dismissed for reasons of simple distrust. Othering is the enemy of listening and learning.

    It’s clear my voice is unwelcome here. That you all would like to maintain the sanctity of the liberal fundamentalist thought vacuum being enforced by this community. Anyone, even from the left, who questions the rhetorical posturing will be shamed. No one is interested in being challenged really at all (and I don’t think this is MM’s fault) So I’m retiring from comment. I’ve had enough. Just remember that movements that function in thought vacuums rarely serve the greater good. A diversity of opinion is at the heart of useful discourse. Ideally it makes us all better. I used to feel that way about this space. Like people spoke their minds and worked stuff out. And we all learned a bit. I valued that and so participated. It’s just not like that anymore.

    Good luck building your own little SODOSOPA:

  82. Frosted Flakes
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 1:12 pm | Permalink


    The reasons you give for leaving are the exact reasons you should stay. Maybe comment less to save your sanity? Maybe engage less with the closed minded and mean spirited people a little less? Also, you might consider just posting under a pseudonym–zero pressure to actually defend yourself from the bombardment of personal attacks and fake-as-fuck-arguments.

  83. Jason Voss
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    Jean, I’m sorry you were so offended by my posting that link. KJC referred to Angela Davis discussing the Ashley Martin video on Democracy Now. I’m generally confused by your perspective, so I will try to refrain from analyzing why that makes me a Bernie Bro or makes you think your voice is not welcome on this weird angry blog.

  84. Demetrius
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

    I’m always sorry to see anyone decide to stop commenting on this blog because they don’t feel welcome.

    I’d like to think the sparring here (however impassioned) remains confined to battles about ideas and philosophies, and avoids attacks on individual attributes.

    If I’ve ever failed in that intent, I apologize.

  85. Jason Voss
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

    I thought the HRC discussion was way off-topic from this post about hostility caught on film, but maybe not. http://www.salon.com/2016/03/31/watch_clinton_goes_off_on_greenpeace_activist_i_am_so_sick_of_you_bringing_up_my_fossil_fuel_money/

  86. Posted March 31, 2016 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

    For what it’s worth, I like having a diversity of opinion represented in the comments section of this site. I even like it when EOS weighs in. I think that respectful debate is good. As Jean says, discourse makes us better. And, for the most part, I’d like to think that the people who comment here are both relatively open minded and respectful. This election cycle, however, appears to be wearing on everyone… to the point where a post about some rich kid in Ann Arbor yelling at an Uber driver somehow morphed into what we’re seeing here.

    I don’t know if it’ll help, but, barring some huge development, I don’t think I’ll be writing about either Sanders or Clinton again until the convention. As I’ve said before, I intend to enthusiastically support whichever of them wins the nomination, and I don’t want to jeopardize that by engaging any further in ridiculous online battles over whether or not someone of my sex can legitimately have issues with Clinton without being a sexist “Bernie Bro.” It’s not fruitful, and I worry that it’ll only make it more difficult to support Clinton if/when she wins the nomination.

    So let’s all be nice to one another, shall we? The Michigan primary is over now, so, really, what’s the use of all this?

  87. Jason Voss
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 9:56 pm | Permalink

    Mark, can you explain what the hell you are talking about?

  88. Lynne
    Posted March 31, 2016 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

    Yeah. I have gotten sucked up in more Bernie/Hillary arguments than I would like. It’s especially dumb because I like them both a whole lot. I voted for Bernie but I am not exactly going to be crying into my oatmeal if he loses.

  89. SOE
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 6:28 am | Permalink

    Why’s the internet turning on Jean Henry?

  90. Jason Voss
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    It seems to me more like Jean Henry is turning against the Internet in this thread. Mark as usual chimes in to puff himself up in a way that makes no sense and seems to be willfully absent of critical thought or willingness to engage in any actual discourse. This is a very depressing blog.

  91. Dan
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    Are you still upset about that ciabatta?

  92. Frosted Flakes
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    If you ask me the interesting and important connecting theme running through the post and the comments is not “hostility caught on camera”. The theme is “vilification” standing in for discourse. Having said that, as much as I wish it wasn’t true, I do think there is some serious underlying “ciabatta” tying things together too. Thanks Dan!

  93. Eel
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    I guess they’re right when they say about God that he doesn’t close a door without opening a window. On the day Jean leaves forever, Jason returns.

  94. Jason Voss
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    i honestly cannot make any sense of this discussion. I’ll not be posting any more. Yes, very similar to the time I was vilified by Mark for giving him ciabattas. I’m such a dick. Enjoy yourselves, but please try to be more specific if you want to mock me. It’s very confusing trying to understand where people are coming from on here, especially Mark.

  95. Kim
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    I had to do some digging, but I now understand the ciabatta reference.


  96. anonymous
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    Jason, you were not “vilified by Mark for giving him ciabattas”.

    You left ciabattas outside the studio, expecting Mark to mention them on the air, and, when he didn’t, you left the following comment on this site.

    “In case anyone out there is thinking of providing promotional organic baked goods for the Saturday Six Pack, don’t bother. Your products won’t get a plug from Mark’s publicity machine.”

    Mark then responded by telling you that the owner of the station, who arrived at the studio before he did that night, had intercepted the ciabattas and taken them home for himself.

    Mark did not vilify you. He merely suggested that, before ranting in public, you make a call and find out what happened.

  97. Peter Larson
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

    One day, I will die.

  98. Jason Voss
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

    I hope it happens to me soon.

  99. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

    Well, fully half of all people feel suicidal at some point, under normal circumstances and we hardly are living under normal circumstances. I would think the rate is higher these days.

  100. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

    And it is very depressing when a viral post such as this, or this one, gets a lot of press, mostly because people think this behavior and behavior just like it is happening, and it is a nightmare situation for so many people, especially those who work in service jobs and depend on their customers for their income.

  101. Jason Voss
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 7:36 pm | Permalink

    Behaviour like Croman’s in the video happens every day in Ann Arbor. The culture actively celebrates it. See about for a bunch of apologists saying that it’s acceptable and wealth inequality has nothing to do with it and it’s not fair to single him out for being rich. A joke blog comment, however, is despicable “ranting in public” still 6 months later. And must be brought up and linked because I posted a link to something that was being discussed.

    And Anonymous, Mark’s response was “Chill the fuck out, JAV. Mark was working on a post about it, but Jesus Christ.” and consitantly escalated it about 6 times, not to mention a city council member accusing me of being a murderer. Truly this is a fucked up community.

  102. Dan
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

    Musta been one helluva ciabatta. Has anyone ever been murdered over a loaf of promotional bread before?

  103. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

    Ann Arbor is a really snotty town. It is worse around here, mostly because of the University and the kind of people that it attracts, unfortunately. I think the Business School is the place that draws people like that the most.

  104. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 1, 2016 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

    That guy has enough money he will always have someone who will drive him somewhere…but honestly, no self respecting cabbie should ever drive him any where again. Let him buy his own car and drive that around himself. It’ll do him good…ha.

  105. Peter Larson
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 1:19 am | Permalink

    “Ann Arbor is a really snotty town. It is worse around here, mostly because of the University and the kind of people that it attracts, unfortunately. I think the Business School is the place that draws people like that the most.”

    Ann Arbor would be like Jackson without the University. Not to denigrate Jackson in any way, but…. do you want to live in Jackson? A post industrial hot bed of unemployment common throughout the Midwest?

    If you hate Ann Arbor so much… then maybe try living somewhere more to your liking. Perhaps Tecumseh would be a good option. Just sayin. As for Ypsi….. if one hates Ann Arbor so much, why would one choose to live in a town directly adjacent to it? One which depends on it economically? It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.

    Making this idiot’s rant about anything more than the fact that (shocker) he is an idiot, gives said idiot far too much credibility.

    As for the B-School….. I used to work there. While there are assholes everywhere in the world, I did not find that there were proportionally more assholes in the B-School than other parts of campus. In fact, I found the B-School to be a rather welcoming and vibrant place.

    I would suggest (shocker) that youth is the real culprit here. Note that there are assholes in the EMU campus as well. Perhaps you’ve never met them?

    And…. so he has money. So what? Why does that matter? Maria, maybe you don’t have money.. but if you did, would you care at all about this guy? No, you would say “he is an idiot, he shouldn’t act like that” and move on. Are you jealous? Do you hate all people with money? Probably not, but you should probably think of checking your own biases and prejudices.

    Not to say (at all) that having money is in any way equivalent to being descended from slaves or being of an Abrahamic religion outside of Christianity, but from a moral standpoint, it generally isn’t a good idea to judge someone on the basis of a single characteristic (that’s a Christian thing)… particularly when the root of that is likely based in envy.

    I am no defending this person nor defending “the rich,” but speaking to a wider human problem. People in the States really need to check themselves. The hatred is consuming you.

  106. Peter Larson
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 1:24 am | Permalink

    “And it is very depressing when a viral post such as this, or this one, gets a lot of press, mostly because people think this behavior and behavior just like it is happening, and it is a nightmare situation for so many people, especially those who work in service jobs and depend on their customers for their income.”

    On this we agree. I worked in service jobs going back to 1982 and have long found that people like to abuse service workers…. and that tendency to abuse has nothing to do with money. Poor people can be real assholes.

    Maybe I am an idiot (I am an idiot, actually). Maybe I just need to read more Marx. But this is getting far more traction than it deserves.

  107. Peter Larson
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 2:30 am | Permalink

    Ignore my posts.

    I have to remind myself that hatred is endemic to this blog. I am myself guilty of it.

    Who cares? Life is pointless. Give up.

  108. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 5:33 am | Permalink

    Ann Arbor is convenient so we stay here…I shrug, one day we may move.

  109. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 6:28 am | Permalink

    So someone told me that half of all people feel suicidal at least once in their lives, and I believed him. Regardless, things are definitely difficult for many people, and that is hard to see. And Peter Larson, I have read your post for a while and I think you are probably depressed. And as much as posting on this blog is usually an excercise in excoriation for me, I think you ought to do something about your unhappiness.

  110. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 6:29 am | Permalink

    And yeah, I like posting in threes. I just think like that.

  111. Westside
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    I agree with Mr.Larson that wealth in and of itself is not a bad thing. But wealth does bestow a certain degree of power. Just as saying business school people are snotty is a a false generalization, isn’t equating a rich idiot and a poor idiot the same kind of muddled thinking?
    luckily the government is working on the criminal justice system because there more than anywhere else we see the results of this belief that everyone is equal. Some people make bad decisions and get off some people make bad decisions and go to jail for long periods of time. Being wealthy means something just as being poor means something and to deny that seems odd. I’ll be interested to see how these issues are addressed on Mr. Maynard’s radio show tonight.

  112. TA
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 8:03 am | Permalink

    @ Peter Larson

    “Jackson is a post industrial hotbed of unemployment.” That’s not quite true, actually. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that Jackson is a mite under the national unemployment rate. Here’s the link:

    My parents live outside of Jackson. Other than the heroin problem, which I would assume is a problem that extends much farther than Jackson’s city limits, Jackson isn’t a bad place to live.

  113. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    I am not convinced that writing business school attendees and graduates of the University of Michigan are not very snotty is a false generalization. More importantly, do they tolerate and accept video’s mouthing off as just a byproduct of a competitive spirit? of losers versus winners? If a person has to drive a cab for a living, are they not, by U Of M’s MBA standards, a loser?

  114. Demetrius
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    Some people are smarter than others. Some work harder. Some people get a better start in life, get bigger breaks, have better health, take bigger risks, etc.

    Consequently, some people are going to be more successful than others, and some are going to be wealthier. I think most people understand that in any given community or society these kinds of disparities are going to exist. (The challenge, I think, is to make sure that as a society, there is a “floor” above which everyone is entitled to a basic level of safety, security, medical care, dignity, etc.)

    The issue, really, is one of scale. Being a hard-working business person or successful entrepreneur is not the same as profiting from a rigged economic or political system, or wealth that is so many magnitudes greater than even what “ordinary” wealthy people enjoy that their power and influence insulate them from the normal dynamics of economics, politics, and personal relationships.

  115. Westside
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 9:18 am | Permalink

    I would hope that a U of M MBA might not see a cab driver as a loser but as an important part of the larger system. The owners of Uber probably see them as essential to their business model. Do they recognize them as human beings with dreams, hopes , needs etc. or just cogs ? I don’t know. I think that is part of what we are seeing played out this election cycle and maybe what Mr.Maynard was getting at in his original post. There are very wealthy people. They do have power. They do control how things are. Is it Ok to talk about that or not? Is it worthy of discussion in the political sphere? Apparently a large group of Americans on both the left and the right think so and are willing to participate in the political process for the first time in there lives. Good for us? I think so. The first step in getting better is admitting that there is a problem. In many spheres of American life from race to class to sexism, despite many examples to the contrary, we are told everything is fine, we’re working on it. Are we? Really?

  116. Jason Voss
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    I don’t think Mr. Croman is representative of the B school (especially the MBA program). He probably couldn’t get in. His segment of the UM student population tends to be the fuckups from elite east coast prep schools who can’t get into an Ivy despite having all the connections and advantages, so they get shipped to Ann Arbor, which they view as a shit town in the middle of nowhere. The city has moved radically toward accommodating their preferences in the last 20 years though. It’s a small segment of the student body, but they have an outsized influence on the culture, partly due to being so obnoxious. The university is unwilling to address this culture in any meaningful way beyond giving them a slap on the wrist and temporarily suspending the chapter when things happen like shooting a pledge in the penis with a bob gun during hazing rituals or date-rape-drugging a young women who subsequently falls out her dorm room window and splats on the loading dock at Markley Hall.

  117. Jason Voss
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    Rich kids from the metro Detroit private schools and affluent areas like West Bloomfield, (where UM is more the default college) don’t tend to behave in this manner. Likewise with students from other parts of the country (who mostly have to be fairly wealthy to afford the insanely expensive out of state tuition).

  118. Peter Larson
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

    “If a person has to drive a cab for a living, are they not, by U Of M’s MBA standards, a loser?”

    No, that is absolutely not the case at all.

    Part of my work at the business school, working alongside MBAs and even a couple of undergrads was on how to engage small business owners in developing countries to improve their businesses, serve customers better and provide reciprocal benefits to the community at large. These weren’t charitable ventures, but rather tailored private sector initiatives intended to generate employment and satisfy market needs.

    Though it has been historically true that business programs do tend to produce profit maximizers, the UM has a long history of doing otherwise. My experience there was nothing but positive. It taught me that profit is simply a means to an end, the core of business is problem solving. Some people want something they can’t get, and business people work to make it happen. Business, at its core, it about serving customers and satisfying needs.

    A lot of what is taught at the UM B school is based on the work of Peter Drucker and CK Prahalad, both of whom I very much recommend, both of whom were very concerned with improving the world.

    There are a lot of misconceptions about business, and people often tend to think of the public/NGO sector as benign and business as evil, but in reality both have the same potential for good and evil.

    So no, an MBA would not at all think of an Uber driver as a loser. The MBA would be concerned with improving the model so that customers are satisfied and the business remains viable. In short, an Uber driver is an opportunity to learn.

    I do recommend Drucker and Prahalad. Easy to read and very much worth it.

  119. Peter Larson
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    It is worth noting that the great (and late) C. K. Prahalad was based at UM.


  120. Peter Larson
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 2:53 pm | Permalink

    MBA students are often much older than those in other Masters programs. Usually, they’ve already been in business for many years before they enter the program. It is a really diverse bunch, but out of the 100 plus MBA students I’ve met, not one was in any way “evil” at least not obviously so.

    I had a great time there. Met a lot of great and engaged people.

  121. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

    You are very lucky, Peter Larson.

  122. Westside
    Posted April 2, 2016 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Mr.Larson that was a very insightful post. It gave me something to think about taking a walk through the woods on this snowy April day.

    Do you think that model of business was what Mr.Snyder was thinking about with his talk of running the state of Michigan like a business? He might have studied with Mr. Prahalad.

  123. Peter Larson
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 12:00 am | Permalink

    I don’t know why I bother posting here.

    I probably won’t be doing it again.

  124. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 1:29 am | Permalink

    How does your work in epidemiology fit in your MBA education?

  125. Westside
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 7:00 am | Permalink

    I know why I don’t post here.

    Enjoy your little SODOSOPA.


  126. Demetrius
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    Off topic – Lately, here, there seems to be an increase in the number of people:

    1. Coming here to post fairly provocative comments on various topics.
    2. Seeming to be *appalled* that anyone would disagree with or challenge those comments.
    3. Demeaning or questioning the motives of those who dare differ with them.
    4. Attacking other commenters – or worse yet, the person who’s actually hosting the blog!
    5. Leaving (or threatening to leave) with great fanfare.

    I don’t get it.

  127. Jcp2
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    You wouldn’t get it because you don’t know these commenters in real life.

  128. Peter Larson
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 12:03 pm | Permalink


    I was working on a project on increasing access to malaria medications through engagement with private sector drug shops in Tanzania at the time. I don’t have an MBA. I just worked there. At the time, I became interested in business and considered pursuing an MBA. It didn’t happen but it was interesting at the time.

  129. Peter Larson
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    These days, I don’t do much of anything at all.

    Thank you for reminding me of a past life.

  130. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

    How did you increase that way?

  131. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    I meant to write, How did you increase access that way?

  132. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    I am genuinely curious, Peter Larson.

  133. Peter Larson
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    There were (are) two problems:

    1. Most health delivery in Africa is through the private sector.
    2. Private sector health providers (shops) can’t negotiate volume discounts in the same manner that governments can, meaning their prices are high and people will default down to cheaper, older and less effective medications to treat uncomplicated malaria.

    The idea (solution) was that international donor groups (in this case the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Malaria and TB) would subsidize malaria medications on the supply side to bring the wholesale price down to the same price that governments pay. This would increase access, as most people in Africa don’t live near a public sector health facility.

    Moreover, after retail markup, the price that consumers paid would be the same price as less effective drugs, meaning that shops would stop stocking them and thus poor drugs would be pushed out of the market.

    So, access to drugs would increase, and the quality of meds available to people would be improved. I was only involved in an evaluation project in Tanzania to see if the scheme worked. We found that it did.

    An aside, in the end the initiative was scrapped. The Americans hated it as they thought it was an unsustainable subsidy, that private drug shops weren’t qualified to be making diagnoses and dispensing meds (which they do anyway and can’t be stopped), and that shops would just gouge prices and charge what they wanted, ignoring the wholesale discount. It was a great idea, and it worked, but the effort died due to politics and ideological weirdness. (long story, someone needs to write a book.)

  134. Peter Larson
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

    What was interesting about that project was what killed it. Public sector health care is seen as entirely benign and the private sector is treated with suspicion, which is exactly what we see in liberal American politics.

    In the end, (in my opinion) what killed this project was American ideological battles. Instead of thinking broadly in terms of an synergy between market and state, the people who advocated against this subsidy subscribed to the unproductive duality we see so often in the US.

    Our own ideological struggles killed a program that worked, and kids died because of it.

  135. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

    That is very interesting. Subsidies often do work, just nobody seems to like them in the long run.

  136. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

    I think if African countries ran their own programs, it might be better than having an outside group come and manage them. How effective is mosquito netting in cutting down malaria transmission?

  137. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

    I do not think people can rely on outside charity for health care delivery. It places a country’s people in very tenuous positions, subject to political battles outside their countries, to which likely they have little to no say in. You ran an effective pilot program, and that was a good thing.

  138. stupid hick
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    All y’all who remain suck, therefore I pledge to comment with greater frequency.

  139. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 8:11 pm | Permalink

    So the reason I bring up the mosquito netting is that we sponsored a little girl in Mozambique a while back, and I would get updates that the money sent was partly used to help the community overall, and one of the things the money we sent over was used for was for the mosquito netting.

  140. Peter Larson
    Posted April 3, 2016 at 11:11 pm | Permalink

    All of that is for another blog.

    This comments section on this blog is for screaming pointless insults at one another, and providing local trolls an alternative to MLive.

    I apologize for having participated in it.

  141. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    Hmm. Maybe.
    I learn things on this blog, when I read the posts.
    It is an alternative to Mlive, that is for sure.

  142. Jcp2
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    At one point Peter maintained his own blog which probably covered what you are asking him now. It was … Interesting.

  143. Westside
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 7:34 am | Permalink

    See. I heard all the trolls had quit this site for greener pastures elsewhere and that this site was going to be for thoughtful discourse on local and national issues. Thanks for the information Mr. Larson.

    Mr.Maynard why do you want your blogs comment section to a forum for people to insult one another?

  144. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    Peter Larson does seem to have a knack for reporting.

  145. Peter Larson
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    This is all I have to say on the matter.


  146. Westside
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 7:58 am | Permalink

    A metaphor!

  147. Peter Larson
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    Discourse is pointless. Everyone hates one another.

  148. Westside
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    Hilary loves all the women and children. So that’s not true.

  149. Jason Voss
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    This is a very confusing comment thread. I find it distressing.

  150. Jason Voss
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    Is “discourse” being used as some sort of euphemism here?

  151. Peter Larson
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 11:21 am | Permalink

    I tried to write a non-combative comment and was met with hostility.

    Why bother anymore? Probably karma, I’m a true asshole, I admit. I hate myself.

  152. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

    No, discourse is not a euphemism.

  153. Westside
    Posted April 4, 2016 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

    “America is the wealthiest nation on Earth, but its people are mainly poor, and poor Americans are urged to hate themselves. To quote the American humorist Kin Hubbard, ‘It ain’t no disgrace to be poor, but it might as well be.’ It is in fact a crime for an American to be poor, even though America is a nation of poor. Every other nation has folk traditions of men who were poor but extremely wise and virtuous, and therefore more estimable than anyone with power and gold. No such tales are told by the American poor. They mock themselves and glorify their betters. The meanest eating or drinking establishment, owned by a man who is himself poor, is very likely to have a sign on its wall asking this cruel question: ‘if you’re so smart, why ain’t you rich?’ There will also be an American flag no larger than a child’s hand – glued to a lollipop stick and flying from the cash register.

    Americans, like human beings everywhere, believe many things that are obviously untrue. Their most destructive untruth is that it is very easy for any American to make money. They will not acknowledge how in fact hard money is to come by, and, therefore, those who have no money blame and blame and blame themselves. This inward blame has been a treasure for the rich and powerful, who have had to do less for their poor, publicly and privately, than any other ruling class since, say Napoleonic times. Many novelties have come from America. The most startling of these, a thing without precedent, is a mass of undignified poor. They do not love one another because they do not love themselves.”
    ― Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five

  154. Peter Larson
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 2:28 am | Permalink

    “Woe to you, oh Earth and Sea, for the Devil sends the beast with wrath,
    Because he knows the time is short…
    Let him who hath understanding reckon the number of the beast
    For it is a human number,
    Its number is Six hundred and sixty six.”

    I left alone, my mind was blank.
    I needed time to think, to get the memories from my mind.

    What did I see?
    Can I believe that what I saw that night was real and not just fantasy.

    Just what I saw in my old dreams
    Were they reflections of my warped mind staring back at me?

    ‘Cause in my dreams it’s always there
    The evil face that twists my mind and brings me to despair

    The night was black, was no use holding back
    ‘Cause I just had to see, was someone watching me
    In the mist dark figures move and twist
    Was all this for real, or just some kind of hell?

    666 the number of the beast
    Hell and fire was spawned to be released

    Torches blazed and sacred chants were praised
    As they start to cry hands held to the sky
    In the night the fires are burning bright
    The ritual has begun, Satan’s work is done

    666 the number of the beast
    Sacrifice is going on tonight

    This can’t go on I must inform the law
    Can this still be real or just some crazy dream?
    But I feel drawn towards the chanting hordes
    They seem to mesmerise, can’t avoid their eyes

    666 the number of the beast
    666 the one for you and me

    I’m coming back
    I will return
    And I’ll possess your body and I’ll make you burn
    I have the fire
    I have the force
    I have the power to make my evil take its course

  155. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 4:16 am | Permalink

    Jason Voss…it is just that things are very stressful politically and economically, these days, and just even trying to approach having a calm discussion truly sets people off, because the consequences for even discussing what is currently happening are intense for many people. Is it a disgrace to be poor? Oh that is a relative question. There is no glory in poverty and being unable to feed and clothe a person or their family is a desperate situation. Peter Larson, I hope you feel better and safer soon.

  156. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 6:31 am | Permalink

    The dilemma, Jason Voss, is this, kids are the sacrificial lambs in this social restructuring that is happening, in a world where almost 40% of adults are childless, possibly rendering those adults being more irrational than the parents who have to send their kids to dysfunctional amnd financially straining schools.

  157. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 6:35 am | Permalink

    People use educating and taking care of kids, other people’s kids,for their own financial stability. The kids and the money they generate for schools and medical care, are used as pawns to secure other people’s, nin parents in particular, financial well being..the leverage people exert these days in no less than the child’s physical existence. It is a pitiful situation.

  158. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 6:36 am | Permalink

    Nin=non..(I, myself, make more typos when writing about upsetting subjects)

  159. Jason Voss
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 6:45 am | Permalink

    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain runs the world
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain is the ultimate product of Capitalism
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain chief bureaucrat of Russia, yawning
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain ran FBI 30 years appointed by FDR and never chased Cosa Nostra
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain apportions wheat to be burned, keep prices up on the world markets
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain lends money to developing nation police-states through the world banks
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain offers brain transplants in Switzerland
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain wakes up in middle of night and arranges his sheets
    (Birdbrain) I am Birdbrain!
    (Birdbrain) I rule Russia, Yugoslavia, England, Poland, Argentina, United States, El Salvador
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain multiplies in Russia, China and the United States
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain inhabits Stalin’s corpse inside the Kremlin wall
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain dictates petrochemical agriculture in Afric desert regions
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain lowers North California’s water table, sucking it up for Orange County Agribusiness Banks
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain clubs baby harp seals and wears their coats to Paris
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain runs the Pentagon, his brother runs the CIA, fatass bucks
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain writes and edits Time, Newsweek, Wall Street Journal, Pravda, Izvestia
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain is Pope, Premier, President, Commissar, Chairman, Senator
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain voted Reagan President of the United States
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain prepares Wonder Bread with refined white flour
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain sold slaves, sugar, tobacco, alcohol
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain sent 20,000,000 intellectuals and Jews to Siberia, 15,000,000 never got back to the Stray Dog Cafe
    (Birdbrain) Wore a mustache and ran Germany on amphetamines the last year of World War II
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain conceived the Final Solution to the Jewish problem of Europe
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain carried it out in gas chambers
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain borrowed Lucky Luciano, the Mafia, from jail to secure Sicily for U.S. Birdbrain against the Reds
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain manufactured guns in the Holy Land and sold them to white goyims in South Africa
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain supplied helicopters to Central America generals, kill a lot of restless Indians, encourage a favorable business climate
    (Birdbrain) He began a war of terror against Israeli Jews
    (Birdbrain) Sent Zionist planes to shoot Palestinian huts near Beirut
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain outlawed opiates on the world markets
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain formed the black market in opium
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain’s father shot skag in hallways of the lower East Side of New York
    (Birdbrain) Organized Operation Condor to spray poison fumes on the marijuana fields of Sonora
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain got sick in Harvard Square from smoking Mexican grass
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain arrived in Europe to conquer cockroaches with propaganda
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain became a great international poet and went around the world praising the glories of
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain, I declare Birdbrain to be victor in the poetry contest
    (Birdbrain) He built the World Trade Center on New York Harbor without regard where the toilets emptied
    (Birdbrain) He began chopping down the Amazon Rainforest to build a woodpulp factory on the river bank
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain in Iraq attacked Birdbrain in Iran
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain in Belfast throws bombs at his mother’s ass
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain wrote Das Kapital, authored the Bible, penned The Wealth of Nations
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain’s humanity, he built the Rainbow Room on top of Rockefeller Center so we could dance
    (Birdbrain) He invented the Theory of Relativity so Rockwell Corporation could make neutron bombs at Rocky Flats in Colorado
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain’s going to see how long he can go without cumming
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain thinks his dong will grow big that way
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain found out he was a Buddha by meditating
    (Birdbrain) Birdbrain’s afraid he’s going to blow up the planet so he built this rocket to get away
    (Birdbrain) So he sang this song to be immortal”

  160. Jason Voss
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    Maria Huffman, some people, like Jean Henry and Mark Maynard, have their heads too far up their own asses to engage in discourse. They are too sure that they are right and incapable of error. That’s what I was getting at about discourse being used as a euphemism.

  161. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    Jason Voss, both seem quite capable of entertaining multiple points of views thoughtfully. Those two can write about things quite nicely and civilly. They do discourse just fine.

  162. Jason Voss
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 7:20 am | Permalink

    OK then what the hell is going on in this thread? Why did the Democracy Now link make Jean “retire” from commenting?

  163. Jason Voss
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 7:22 am | Permalink

    In the name of discourse

  164. Westside
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    Maria Huffman – I hope you have a great day. Your opinions and post here are like a breath of clean mountain air.

  165. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    I can not speak for her. I can tell you this with complete certainty, people suffer reprisals in the county for speaking out and up, and the reprisals are harsh.

  166. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    Well, westside, what makes it bearable, is I know how independent minded Michganders are, and I put much faith in that. Have a nice day as well.

  167. Westside
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    I will. The sun is shining, my work awaits me and tonight another set of election results.

    Did you make a typo or do you think our county is especially harsh?

  168. Jean Henry
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    Jason– I am writing this so you will stop this fretting or whatever it is you have been doing here. I did not retire from commenting because of your comment. Nothing to do with it. Your comment just happened to come before mine. That’s it. I decided to leave well enough alone–due to a cumulative effect and a pattern in discourse that I found unpleasant. Nothing personal at all. Nothing to see here folks. I hope readers will now see fit to comment on other, more worthy, MM posts.

    PS The Allen Ginsberg was a nice touch. Not sure it was aptly applied,. Well maybe so. I once danced salsa with AG in the lower east side. We should all be so cranky and full of joy at once. Have a great day.

  169. Jason Voss
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    Jean, it works much better in rock format, but I think it fits with the theme that people are giant assholes, myself especially. Some of the lines hit pretty close to home re: HRC though, I know. It certainly seemed that you comment “Different exchange…” was directly responding directly to mine, but I missed a couple before it when I posted from having the page open or I wouldn’t have chimed in. Also, Mark’s self-righteous tone tends to make me angry. That’s why I stay away from this blog. In this case, not looking at it made me more paranoid that additional people were talking shit about me and my failed business. It’s great that Mark is better at covering local news than what’s left of local journalism. Too bad he’s such an asshole.

  170. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    it was not a typo, Westside. Especially harsh?

  171. Lynne
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    Day-am, Maria Hoffman! Way to be a total jerk to non-parents. WTF!?

  172. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 12:28 pm | Permalink


  173. Maria Huffman
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    So Lynne if you want to have a reciprocal communication effort with me, I will do so when you post your full name and I at least have some inkling you are actually a real person. Frosted Flakes is excepted from that, because I usually like what he writes.

  174. Lynne
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    hmmm. tough decision. I have reasons for not posting my full name here. I like meaningful discussions to be sure but that might be more than I am willing to do. Besides, I am totally cool with thinking you are a jerk for saying what you did. Carry on.

  175. Westside
    Posted April 5, 2016 at 5:27 pm | Permalink

    Now they’re attacking the wealthy for their shell corporations and offshore accounts? When will it end?

  176. Westside
    Posted April 6, 2016 at 7:00 am | Permalink

    Why don’t those children in Wisconsin realize that Bernie won’t give them free stuff?

  177. Westside
    Posted May 9, 2016 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

    Did something happen with his father?

  178. Meta
    Posted May 9, 2016 at 9:33 pm | Permalink

    Yes, the senior Croman was charged with 20 felonies today.

    From the New York Times:

    For decades, Steven Croman was a successful landlord in New York City. His companies bought up more than 140 Manhattan apartment buildings, often filled with rent-regulated tenants. And then, methodically, he pushed them to leave, buying them out of their leases for relatively modest sums or, if that did not work, harassing them until they left, tenants said. He was a regular on “worst landlords” lists. His tenants even started a website against him.

    Mr. Croman’s business came to embody in many ways how rent regulations have eroded in the city, putting housing out of reach for more and more people. He was able to deregulate most of his rent-stabilized apartments within just a few years of buying the buildings, enabling him to collect much higher rents.

    On Monday, though, his fortunes took a different turn. Mr. Croman, 49, turned himself in to the authorities around 7 a.m. in Lower Manhattan. He was charged with 20 felonies, including grand larceny, criminal tax fraud, falsifying business records and a scheme to defraud, relating to accusations he inflated his rental income to secure more than $45 million in bank loans. He faces up to 25 years in prison. His mortgage broker, Barry Swartz, 53, was charged with 15 felonies.

    The New York State attorney general’s office, which investigated Mr. Croman for almost two years, also filed a lawsuit against Mr. Croman on Monday, seeking to force him to give up his real estate business and pay millions of dollars in restitution to tenants and penalties.

    Read more:

  179. Westside
    Posted June 25, 2016 at 6:35 am | Permalink

    Hey. I thought you didn’t edited these comments? I sent someone here to read some thrilling Ann Arbor style social interactions and they’re all gone. What gives?

  180. Westside
    Posted June 25, 2016 at 7:12 am | Permalink

    And everyone at Argus is just heartbroken about Brexit the past few days. I mean, what is the world coming to? Did you see the stock markets yesterday? Your grandparents and parents spend years exploiting people to build up a nice nest egg for the family and suddenly some nut jobs like Sanders and Trump come along and mess everything up! This Brexit is just another sign of some people not realizing how good they have it. Wealth inequality? A lie. Walk around most neighborhoods in America and most of the people there are equally poor or rich. Sitting at Argus there aren’t a bunch of poor people ruining everything, everybody seems pretty well off. Indeed you have to be to go here. Most mornings between my coffee, a pastry ( or two) some fruit, yogurt and a generous tip I drop $20. But I digress.

    Make America great again. America has always been great. Just take a look at how much your stock portfolio has risen over the past 6 years people. Now that is great! and if you don’t have a stock portfolio who’s fault is that? Maybe if the Sanders and Trump people spent a little less time blaming others for their situation and more time getting educated they could enjoy the good life here in Ann Arbor. Gotta go. It’s farmers market day here in town. You won’t find anyone there talking about making America great again. We know that anyplace you can step out of your condo, walk down the street and buy organic lettuce, free range meat and imported wine and interact only with people of your own class is already pretty special.

    The revolution happened years ago, but most of you missed it. Have a good weekend!

  181. Posted June 25, 2016 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    There was a software update last night, and I think that must have something to do with the fact that the earlier comments are hidden. I’ll look into it.

  182. Westside
    Posted June 25, 2016 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    That’s a relief. I thought maybe you were trying to rewrite history to obscure your fervent support of class warfare . Although I can understand why you might want to do that now that you’re a landlord. If you did renounce your past statements you’d be welcome to come down to Argus to join us for Coffee. But if my understanding is correct you still actually – work- to earn a living- so you might not have the time. Still if you could sneak away we might give you some tips on tax avoidance, shelters etc. and how to mingle with the elite. It’s difficult to mix in if you aren’t born into it but a few have been able to do it. Maybe you could. If not though you could bring your children because it’s never too early to start nurturing a sense of entitlement and superiority. Like with that toilet thing. You should have just used the other bathroom until the day the cleaning lady came and then had the child tell her to retrieve the gadget for him. It’s never too early for children to start learning that some people rule and some people do. It’s an important concept to grasp early. They can also work on this skill at Argus by having them give the servers a large tip. The servers appreciation instills in the child a sense of how much those who wait on us love and appreciate all that we do for them. I know it’s a lot to take on, but you seem smart and ambitious. I’m sure you could do it without too much trouble and it seems to us like you’re making many steps in the right direction. Don’t be afraid, It’s OK. We’re only trying to do what’s best for everyone and we know what that is. That’s why we have all the money. It’s called the Invisible Hand, capital always goes to were it will be best used. That’s why some people have loads of money and others don’t, it’s a natural law. You can’t fight it. Submit!

  183. Posted June 25, 2016 at 10:25 am | Permalink

    I’m sure it’s because I have a cold, and I’ve been drinking cough syrup, but I’m having a hard time following your comments, Westside, especially as they relate to Argus. While I’ve never been there, I know one of the owners, and I think they’re doing awesome work in helping local growers sell their produce. Is that not the case in your opinion?

  184. Posted June 25, 2016 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    If anyone’s interested, here’s a link to the Argus interview I did a few years back with Kathy Sample and Bill Brinkerhoff.

  185. Posted June 25, 2016 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    And I’m still to sure why the first 90 or so comments in this thread aren’t showing. I’ve asked a friend of mine who knows about such things to look into it.

  186. Westside
    Posted June 25, 2016 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    Just the opposite. It’s a wonderful gathering spot for the community and with the current expansion it will be even better. Beautiful fresh produce, meat, dairy and prepared foods and it really is a gathering place for the community.

    And more than that it’s a beautiful escape from the troubles that seem to plague the world these days. All the troubles with class, race relations etc. just vanish when you’re enjoying a coffee with your neighbors and talking about school activities and vacations . We always thought we would leave Ann Arbor for a more cosmopolitan city but Ann Arbor has really come along in the past two decades. The city we moved to seems to have been replaced by something new and wonderful. And for us Argus really epitomizes that , it’s like something you’d find in San Fransisco or Brooklyn. It really helps to steer the neighborhood in a certain direction and we love that. With places like this and the upscale developments in the neighborhood it’s really transformative. Currently there’s a house under construction on the corner of Seventh and Jefferson and the asking price is around 1 million dollars. In the old west side! This is amazing ( not to mention what a boost it will be to our property values). And it creates a certain feeling in the neighborhood – a kind of social solidarity about who we are, what kind of community we live in and what are values are. Whoever buys that house will be joining us for coffee soon at Argus more than likely. And I bet they won’t be complaining about wealth distribution or American prison policy or black lives matter or stagnant and declining wages for the middle class. They’ll be talking about fun stuff like the great dinner they had or the new tech start-up they’re working on or where their kids got into college. They won’t be going on about how rich people are bad. They won’t be making fun of some rich kid who made a mistake. Life doesn’t have to be so difficult or mean. It can just be nice, and fun and beautiful.

    You should really spend some time hanging out there. Just relax and take it easy and enjoy life. Stop worrying so much. Support a local business that’s working to make Ann Arbor a special place and an escape from the troubles of world.

    P.S. I hope you feel better soon! And I don’t think that house has sold yet if you’re interested in moving. We have a great schools!

  187. Westside
    Posted June 25, 2016 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    Sorry for rambling on. I’m supposed to be packing for our summer vacation and I’m procrastinating. I’d rather do anything than pack! Have a great summer!

  188. Posted June 25, 2016 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    Like you, I don’t like the way things are heading in Ann Arbor. I just find your focus on Argus to be a little off the mark. But, like I said, I’ve never been inside. Maybe the place is full of douchebags. I can tell you, though, the intention behind it was great… providing a space where farmers could set their own prices and leave their goods to be sold, so that they could focus on growing produce instead of standing around tables at local farmers markets.

  189. Art
    Posted July 8, 2016 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

    Hello Mark and this is Artur Zawada the ex-uber driver. Can we meet and talk about?

  190. Moishe
    Posted February 13, 2017 at 1:09 am | Permalink

    Hi Mark, I just read your article and am impressed by your depth of understanding.
    As a tenant in one of Jake Croman’s Father’s buildings…I can say, ” Like Fathger, like Son.” Even worse than his Father is his Mother, Harriet Kahan Croman who is driven by insaitable greed and has assisted her husband in torturing their tenants and bleeding them
    financially and emotionally. Knowing the parents, I can say with full confidence that the Uber Driver was innocent in this and that Jake Croman and his obnoxious friends all lied
    about The Uber driver making remarks about his religion. Jake Croman is doing what he learned from his mother and father – to lie through their teeth and get others to lie for you…in order to discredit someone. That’s what they did to the Uber driver and that’s what they have done to countless tenants. In the name of greed and wanting to get a tenant out so they can charge more money – the Cromans drag their poor tenants to court on frivolous lawsuits – their court papers that are full of lies written into their complaints and then they bring en masse their paid employees (hired goons) to all come to court and committ perjury by saying the same lies on the witness stand, in order to get the innocent tenants to loose their cases and set them up for eviction. The tenants telling the truth are outnumbered. These hired thugs are paid for their false testimony and rewarded with cash bonuses for their perjury.

    This is what happened to the poor Uber driver. Jake Croman publically lied about being attacked by the Uber driver for his religion. Jake then had his friends back him up along with others who wrote comments supporting Jake on the various articles and blogs , in order to discredit the Uber Driver. Jake Croman has learned his cruelity and indifference very well from his parents, how to destroy a person’s life, livilihood, or home, without any remorse for the devastating impact they have inflicted on another person.

    It took his father about 20 years for the truth to finally come out and get arrested for his lies and fraud. We’ll see how long it will take Jake Croman to receive his Karma.

    In the meantime – the Cromans have coldly and callously destroyed yet another life. Is this America? How can it be that the hard-working Uber driver loses his job, while Jake Croman didn’t even get a slap on the wrist by his College or Fraternity – but he managed to suceed in destroying a life.

    Knowing the Cromans, I bet they rewarded thier spoiled spawn for lessons well learned, by gifting him with an expensive car so that he no longer has to call for car service. In the meanwhile the Uber Driver can no longer drive, and lost his job and income.

    The Cromans are a cancer on this society….their millions of dollars are only ill gained blood money. The Cromans should be tried for crimes against hunanity.
    Jake Croman’s karma awaits him.

  191. Moishe
    Posted February 13, 2017 at 1:20 am | Permalink

    Please see:
    Press Conference on Steve Croman – A.G. Schneiderman Announces Felony Charges And Civil Suit Against Major NYC Landlord


    also check out websites : http://www.cromantenants.org – and – http://www.stopcromancoalition.org

One Trackback

  1. […] isn’t a straight-up “hit” piece on U-M. [They didn’t even mention the name Jake Croman.] The author not only acknowledges that, to some extent, the University’s pursuit of more […]

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