John Auchter

Auchter's Art: What's more Michigan than that?

I'm on my annual summer family vacation, so I drew this cartoon a week ahead of time. It's always a challenge to guess at what will remain topical for 24 hours, let alone a full week. These days it's darn near impossible.

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A man and two women sit around a campfire, a banner in the background says "Honor the Treaties"
Kaye LaFond / Michigan Radio

Water Protectors are camping in Northern Michigan to call for a shutdown of Enbridge's Line 5 pipeline.


About 15 permanent campers are at two rural properties in Levering and Cross Village, roughly 15 miles south of the Straits of Mackinac, where twin pipelines along the lake bottom carry mostly oil on its journey from Western Canada to Sarnia, Ontario.



UPDATED @ 9:55 pm on 8/19/18

UPDATE: The Branch County Drain Commissioner says emergency repairs to the Blackhawk Dam continue, and the situation is improving. Materials and further repairs will be needed to return the dam to normal operations.   

The Flood Watch issued by the National Weather Service for the Coldwater River and Pilot Knob area will continue.  The risk for significant flooding has been reduced. Residents in the affected area should continue to monitor local media outlets and official messaging for the latest information and updates.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

A judge is expected to decide Monday whether the head of the state health department should face trial on charges related to Flint’s water crisis.

Nick Lyon is the director of the Department of Health and Human Services. He was indicted more than a year ago on charges of involuntary manslaughter and misconduct in office. 

Garnishing a dish with sprigs of fresh parsley, lemon slices and vegetables sliced up to look like flowers can be a lovely way to spruce up a meal. But do you know what's not lovely at all? Having your wages garnished. 

A listener named Bryan asks, "Why is it that when you 'garnish' a plate of food, you add something to it, but when you garnish someone's wages you take something away?"

head shot of Bill Gelineau
Bill Gelineau

The primaries are over, and we are officially into the general election season.

If you pulled a ballot in the August election, you might have noticed there were not two, but three, parties on the primary ballot this year: Republican, Democrat, and Libertarian.

Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Bill Gelineau joined Stateside to talk about what he wants his campaign to accomplish.

Tesla Tweets Trouble

Aug 18, 2018
Daniel Howes / Detroit News

Tesla CEO Elon Musk needs a timeout.

Big-league auto industry pressure is getting to the, quote, “visionary” hailed by tech fan boys and true believers. You don’t need to take my word for it. Look at his Twitter feed. Less than two weeks ago, he rips one off saying that he’s thinking about taking the electric-car maker private. 

Funding, he said, is secured. By whom, he didn’t say – a not-insignificant detail for a transaction that could be the largest of its kind ever done in the United States. The market swoons. Investors clamor for details … understandably expecting the California automaker to file its thinking with the Securities and Exchange Commission. You know, like any other normal public company.

Aretha Franklin
flickr user ktkatrina

Memorial and funeral plans have been announced for Detroit’s own Queen of Soul.

Arethan Franklin will lie in state at Detroit’s Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History on August 28 and 29. The viewing will be open to the public.

That will be followed by a private funeral at Greater Grace Temple on August 30.

Kathy Smith
Macomb County

Things are getting back to normal at the Macomb County Clerk's office, less than five months after Karen Spranger was removed from office.

Spranger's bizarre behavior and incompetence after she was elected in 2016 drove the department into turmoil and disarray.

Current Clerk Kathy Smith says a lot of people left because of Spranger, so the hardest part has been filling all the vacant positions and getting the new workers trained.

DEQ map

The state found high levels of industrial chemicals in two Kalamazoo County cities, but it’s unlikely they have the same source of contamination.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality found chemicals known as PFAS in 26 private wells in Richland Township and nearby Parchment. Both are in Kalamazoo County.

Maps from the DEQ shows that it found 13 wells in each city with PFAS concentrations above the EPA advisory level of 70 parts per trillion.  


The U.S. Dept. of Justice is appealing an immigration judge's ruling that protected Ibrahim Parlak from deportation.

Parlak is a West Michigan restaurant owner who fled Turkey 27 years ago, after being in a Kurdish separatist group.

The federal government started deportation proceedings against him in 2004, alleging he failed to disclose his involvement in the group when he applied for U.S. citizenship.

The government also says the group Parlak belonged to was a terrorist organization.


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