Feedback: Reader reponses on 'broken' democracy, Origin Summit, and poutine


We received an email from Charlie Haviland of Franklin, who wrote regarding Jack Lessenberry's Nov. 4 column, "Our broken system." Haviland writes:

Each Election Day, I am reminded that it ain't a perfect world when Jack Lessenberry faces his deadline before the TV talking heads sort out the returns. But, thanks to the Detroit Free Press, Jack had something relevant to talk about this year.

When the Free Press endorsed Rick Snyder after the Detroit daily criticized his administration ad nauseam, I was befuddled, too. Lessenberry tempered his cynicism of the endorsement by letting Snyder off the hook. Sort of. "Yes, Snyder did do a few good things," he wrote. And, Lessenberry let the Freep off the hook. Sort of. "Essentially," he wrote, "he [Mark Schauer] never explained how he was going to get anything done."

The real story here, Lessenberry contends — and, I agree — is that democracy is broken, better yet extinct, and has given way to plutocracy (leadership by billionaires) and oligarchy (thanks to the Citizens United ruling). My American brothers and sisters this week — to their credit — implored everyone to vote.

Maybe, Jack is right. "No wonder more than half the people didn't vote," he wrote. "What's surprising is that so many did."


We also received a fax about last week's cover story, "Fear and Loathing at the Origins Summit." It came from Dennis G. Vatsis of Detroit, who wrote:

I commend Lee DeVito and Michael Jackman for their interesting article mocking the summit on divine creation of the universe.

I find it amazing in this year 2014 that many surveys indicate greater numbers of people believe in ancient biblical versions of divine creation of the universe, written by scribes who were functionally illiterate and knew nothing of the sciences, than subscribe to well-documented scientific concepts of the origins of the universe. No wonder America is losing its educational edge to foreign rivals that emphasize scientific education rather than religious dogma. The religious zealots' incessant demands to masquerade religion as science is disturbing and has dire consequences for the future of our country.


Surprisingly, what generated the most comments on our site and our Facebook page was our slideshow of various local poutines. Comments ranged from suggested places we omitted to comments about how gross it looked:

Smokies in Wyandotte on Biddle Avenue does a poutine topped with pulled pork!

The Laundry in Fenton had the best I've ever had.

Mr. B's in Rochester has a version worth adding to this list.

One-Eyed Betty's! I think poutine would be a perfect match to Zombie Killer!

Saturday nights at Honest John's Bar on Selden.

Disco Fries from Red Crown.

Grew up across the bridge and it was just fries and gravy for lunch. Low rent. In Quebec they add soft little lumps of cheese. Now it's trendy food.

This is the best thing Canada has ever done.

Québécois drek. Feh.

What IS that? Looks nasty!

So, just to make sure I understand what the hell everyone is raving about. We're talking about fries with brown gravy? Please tell me I'm wrong.


Our blog post about movies on Netflix set in metro Detroit inspired a number of people to chime in with suggestions of their own, including:


Only Lovers Left Alive

1959's Blue Denim (set in Dearborn)

It Came From Detroit

Grosse Pointe Blank

Four Brothers with Mark Wahlberg

A Band Called Death

Vanishing on 7th Street

The Water Line (Highland Park)

True Romance

Crossing the Bridge

Bird on a Wire

Collision Course (with Jay Leno and Pat Morita)

Crave (2012)

The Rosary Murders

2002's Narc with Ray Liotta and Jason Patric

Joy Road (2004)

Blue Collar

Scarecrow (1973)

Out of Sight (1998)


Polish Wedding (Hamtramck)

The Giant Mechanical Man. The Border City Music Project

The Butterfly Effect 3: Revelations

The Crow (but none of its sequels, just the first one; the sequels kinda sucked)

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