Talk:Michigan Supreme Court elections
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This is the discussion page for the article Michigan Supreme Court elections.
I've copied over the related discussions from user pages surrounding the edits of a blocked user. Michaeltams 14:31, 9 October 2008 (UTC)
Michigan Supreme Court race
I've made some revisions to your recent edit to the Michigan Supreme Court elections page; a lot of your changes took out helpful content, and replaced it with highly partisan language. Taylor may not be your choice for Justice, but since all the stories you took out are readily available online, Judgedpedia's credibilty is harmed when stuff like this happens. I like using the site most of all because I know it's a one-stop shop for information I need in order to be a more informed voter; and if all the good stuff's gone, why bother? And I'm from Michigan, too, so I really like to know what's going on with the elections!
If you've got some great articles on Diane Hathaway, will you add those? I haven't been able to find too much information on her, and it looks like you might be privy to sources I am not.
In loco parentis 00:15, 9 October 2008 (UTC)
Hello, I care to disagree. I found the original posting very partisan due to it's clear preference toward Justice Taylor. I can safely conclude this due to the many negative references toward Judge Hathaway and many mentions of Judge Thomas. The race is between Hathaway and Taylor. If we could find a way to make the site non-partisan, and simply informative, I would be happy to participate. I'm sorry we have different deffinitions for the term "non-partisan."
Violation of wiki norms
Your edits to the Michigan Supreme Court elections article are in violation of common editing norms. The first violation was deleting neutral, verifiable information. An example is the deletion of "Hathaway has publicly stated that she supported the failed Reform Michigan Government Now ballot proposal." This statement is true (she said as much; and the initiative failed) and was properly cited. This edit made the article worse, not better. Second, the slanting of the article indicates a POV conflict (see Judgepedia:How not to write articles about judges for a section on "Avoid being a POV troll"). There were numerous examples of this. Lastly, and most egregious, you blanked the article when your edits were reverted for POV reasons. Blanking a page is vandalism and is a violation of universal wiki standards and etiquette. Unfortunately, this brief history leaves only one option, which is blocking your contributions to the website. I'm going to copy this and other talk correspondence to the discussion page of the article in question - where your dispute should have been taken up in the first place. Michaeltams 14:28, 9 October 2008 (UTC)
Due to the incredible lack of information on Judge Hathaway, I have filled in some of the blanks. Over the next few days, I would like to reorganize the entire page, without deleting important information, so that the page is more reader friendly and organized in a way that is easy to comprehend and navigate.
While I will openly admit that I am a Democrat (as noted by my username), it is my intention to make this page easy to navigate, not to slander one candidate or another. Which is why I do plan to take out some of the highly partisan language, without deleting the important content. I also hope to take out some of the information that was included, but does not have any bearing on this race - example: I removed the slur of MDP Chairman Mark Brewer, as Mr. Brewer's former clients have no bearing on this race.
Hey UMDem, welcome and thanks for your contributions. I renamed the page to stay consistent with our naming conventions, and added the same comments on your user talk page. Please be sure to sign your talk page comments with four tildes so everyone knows how current your comments are. Thanks. Michaeltams 15:14, 20 October 2008 (UTC)
Unethical Partisan Editing
Diane Marie Hathaway's photo has been removed. Credible and verfiable information from the Hathaway section has been deleted and altered to suit a partisan agenda. Independent and verifiable information on the RMGN ballot section has been deleted and altered to suit a partisan agenda.
- I hope that the conservatives who have altered this page for political gain will be treated with the same punishment as the liberal who was previously blocked in the posts above. This is not a place for partisan games...it is a place to provide credible information for voters to make decisions on.
--UMDem08 15:47, 22 October 2008 (UTC)
UMDem: Hi again. Can you copy and paste the missing information on this page for review and discussion? Thanks. Michaeltams 16:51, 22 October 2008 (UTC)
Reform Michigan Now ballot proposal
The information that UMDem keeps putting on the page about RMN is partisan flackery. I've pasted it below. UMDem can hardly object to having his or her work summarily removed from the page since he or she as far as I can tell from the edit summary regularly does the same thing. If you want other editors to talk over a chance here before they make it, do the same thing. Since you don't, stop complaining. Dextra 17:53, 22 October 2008 (UTC)
Don't put pure cut-and-paste on the article; and don't take up 20% of the article with partisan flackery from a failed ballot initiative that every newspaper in Michigan laughed at unless you want to start a page about the failed ballot initiative that every Michigan newspaper laughed at, in which case, that article can include all that information. Here, it is out-of-place and unbalanced even if your particular edits on it didn't amount to a purely one-sided partisan hackjob.
Reform Michigan Government Now! Ballot Proposal
According to the framers of the Reform Michigan Government Now! (RMGN) proposal, had voters accepted the proposal it would have accomplished the following:
Reforming the Legislative Branch
- Legislators’ benefits after leaving office to be the same as retired state employees
- Stop the revolving door between the Legislature and lobbying by enacting a two-year lobbying ban — the toughest in the nation
- Require annual public disclosure of income and assets by all legislators
- Roll back the 38 percent increase lawmakers gave themselves in 2002
- Reduce the Senate from 38 members to 28 and the House from 110 members to 82
- Reform redistricting by appointing a bipartisan panel to set legislative districts
Reforming the Judicial Branch
- Judicial benefits after leaving office to be the same as retired state employees
- Reduce judicial salaries by 15 percent
- Toughen disciplinary and conflict of interest requirements
- Require annual public disclosure of income and assets for all judges and justices
- Add 10 judges to the lower courts and reduce the number of Supreme Court Justices from seven to five justices and the Court of Appeals from 28 to 21 judges
Reforming the Executive Branch
- Benefits after leaving office for the four statewide elected officials (governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and secretary of state) to be the same as retired state employees
- Reduce the salaries of the four statewide elected officials by 25 percent
- Stop the revolving door between the executive branch and lobbying by enacting a two-year lobbying ban — the toughest in the nation
- Require annual public disclosure of income and assets for the four statewide elected officials
- Reduce the constitutional cap on the number of state government departments from 20 to 18 and cut hundreds of state boards and commissions
- Strengthen the ban on illegal aliens’ ability to register and vote
- Make the Bureau of Elections independent of partisanship
- Allow no-reason absentee voting
- Require post-election audits of election procedures
- Require paper trails for all voting systems
- Ban election officials like the secretary of state and local clerks from taking on campaign roles in elections they’re overseeing
- Enact anti-fraud measures to protect the integrity of Michigan’s election process
Don't include obviously POV sentences
And expect to be taken seriously. Sentences like "Hathaway has an extensive legal background" is obviously POV. Dextra 18:14, 22 October 2008 (UTC)
By the same token
This section which is just removed is partisan flakkery from the other side. It has some facts in it, but couched in a clearly POV way intended as persuasive speech.
Evidence of Democratic maneuvers against Taylor
A labor intern for the Mackinac Center for Public Policy unearthed a PowerPoint presentation entitled "Changing the Rules of politics in Michigan to help the Democrats." The presentation revealed that the Democrats' primary aim is to obtain redistricting advantages that would prove particularly helpful when it came to the state judiciary. For the complete 32-slide presentation, click here.
Slide eight of the presentation stated that obtaining a majority in all branches of the Michigan government was “an extremely expensive and very long shot proposition.” But, according to the presentation, “Redistricting reform by itself will not be approved by the voters.” In order to succeed, “redistricting reform must be a small part of a larger, popular state government reform proposal.” Specifically, the presentation suggested reducing the number of Supreme Court Justices by two, requiring Justices Stephen Markman and Robert Young to vacate their seats--both just happen to be cornerstones of the court's Republican majority. Additionally, it seeks to "Reduce the Court of Appeals from 28 to 20 judges, most of them [former Republican Governor John] Engler appointees." Prior to the discovery of the PowerPoint presentation, the Michigan Democratic Party released a campaign commercial that stated that if the Michigan Supreme Court did not vote in favor of the proposition, then the court was biased. After the PowerPoint discovery, the Reform Michigan Now Group quieted that approach.
See Taylor's page
I've edited Taylor's page to address some of the partisan flackery - a word I'm not familiar with but may start using - especially this section that was called "Evidence of Democratic maneuvers against Taylor." I think the edits I made created a neutral story where there wasn't one before, and at a minimum it is much improved. Michaeltams 20:33, 22 October 2008 (UTC)
When a good portion of this article focuses on the RMGN initiative, almost all of which was slanted against the initiative - I felt it was fair to include a summary of what proponents said to balance the overwhelming amount of material put forth by its critics. Regardless of your opinion on the matter, Dextra, when Taylor supporters are making the RMGN proposal a key flank of their platform, it is important for voters to be presented with a balanced viewpoint on the issue. The current section, however, seems adequate. Also...while you seem to focus on the fact that newspapers opposed the proposal - 415,000+ voters saw fit to put it on the ballot, Cliff Taylor had a hand in removing it - it is worthy of some analysis.
I apologize that one sentence in the overwhelming amount of editing that I did seemed biased "Hathaway has an extensive legal background". It was not my intention. But I think it is fair to point out that prior to my edits, the entire article appeared to be an extension of the Cliff Taylor campaign - attacking the past of MDP Chair Mark Brewer, the personal acquaintances of Hathaway's EX husband, and the fact that more information was provided on Judge Thomas and her supporters than on Hathaway, the nominee.
Furthermore, disagreement with the two portions you mentioned did not warrant the excessive blanking that occurred - originally deleting a large portion of Hathaway's endorsements, without providing a link to more (which I still don't see a reason for - it should not be up to us which endorsements are suitable for the page), deleting her picture, or including what was originally a very slanted and politically motivated accusation that Hathaway had gone negative, when in fact the ad that is playing is not authorized by the Hathaway campaign.
Finally, the accusations that a phrase like "Hathaway has an extensive legal background" is overly political and warrants blanking, when the Taylor section contains bold and blocked out portions that are direct quotes from his campaign website and prior to Michael's editing was quite possibly the most partisan "neutral" information I have ever read.
I am willing for you to include information from the Taylor site if you believe it is informative and necessary for voters to understand who Taylor is, but at the same time would appreciate if you did not allow your opinion to lead to dirty tricks like eliminating balanced information and photos of his opponent.
--UMDem08 00:31, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
I will also be editing the portion the Detroit News Endorsement, the following quote is clearly intended to be persuasive in nature:
The paper also took Taylor's challenger, Diane Hathaway, to task for supporting the ill-fated Reform Michigan Government Now ballot proposal.
The following is all that they said about Hathaway:
Judge Hathaway has served 16 years on the Wayne Circuit Court and several years as an assistant prosecutor and has the requisite qualifications for the post. But she stated last month she favored the ill-advised Reform Michigan Government Now ballot proposal, which was ruled off this fall’s ballot by both the appellate and Supreme courts. The plan’s backers admitted in their own presentations, after all, that the proposal was designed to tilt state government in favor of one political party.
I believe this would be more suitable:
While noting that Hathaway had the qualifications to serve, the paper concluded that her support for the RMGN ballot proposal was reason to oppose her.
--UMDem08 00:40, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
I would also propose that Newspaper endorsements be included in the general list of endorsements and that we attempt to keep testimonials for the candidates in the Election Developments section, which I am trying to place in chronological order.
I do not believe it is necessary to have things double posted in both sections - specifically when all readers will see Taylor's section before Hathaway's. I believe that if we actually want to keep this non partisan and balanced we should leave "The Candidates" to the basics about each person and then have the rest in the developments section.
--UMDem08 00:48, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
Fundraising for Hathaway
Can someone explain why the information regarding Hathaway's campaign finances was removed? It was pertinent information, and unless the remover can replace it with more up-to-date info (I looked, but could not find), it needs to be replaced.
In loco parentis 01:11, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
This may have been my mistake...when the Hathaway section was messed with, I used a saved version on my computer to replace it all...I didn't realize that a section may have actually been added when everything else was being mindlessly deleted. If you have the information, please add it.
--UMDem08 12:08, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
Note to UMDem
I apologize for focusing on what I saw as your POV and ignoring the pro-Taylor POV. I agree with you that there was some of that in article--maybe even a lot--and I can see why that would irk the heck out of you. I don't have time right now but will try to get rid of some of it also. Dextra 02:21, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
- Like I promised, I'm working to remove any POV or slant from the article. I haven't been able to get on Judgepedia half the time I tried, which is why this has taken longer than I would have hoped. Dextra 20:09, 24 October 2008 (UTC)
I have added the two ads that I know of that have played in this race so far, attacking Taylor. One in the RMGN section and another labeled as an MDP ad. When I have some more time I will look for the Taylor ad that is playing too, but if anyone else already has it, please include it on the page. I think we should try to compile all of the ads here.
--UMDem08 12:17, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
Found it and incorporated it into the article. Michaeltams 20:42, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
2008 Election locking
Judgepedia is a collaborative effort to provide information on judges, particularly as it relates to elections. In October 2008, Judgepedia experienced instances of vandalism on the site, not limited to but including blanking out of pages. This is extremely destructive and undermines the work of every Judgepedia contributor. Our locking policy (see "protected pages" in the article entitled How to contribute to Judgepedia and our page entitled Judgepedia:Blocking policy for more information) states that we will protect sensitive pages on the Thursday before an election. We deem this to be a critical defensive measure to prevent disruptive and destructive vandalism.
We acknowledge one limitation to this policy: there may be useful information that needs to be added to a protected page, or inaccurate information that needs to be corrected. Therefore, please contact Katy Farrell, with any request to edit a protected page. Please be specific on the nature of the edit(s), and if you choose to contact Katy by e-mail, please provide your user name as well in your correspondence, if applicable. You can contact Katy Farrell at katyfarrell(at)judgepedia(dot)org or leave a message on her user talk page.
Updating Election Results
The election results that were originally posted were incorrect, because they were posted prior to being completed. I have updated them, as I believe the complete results have now been tabulated. --UMDem08 03:41, 6 November 2008 (UTC)