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Ann Arbor Mayor Pro Tem Says Her Poor Attendance Is A Non-Issue. National Experts Respond: “Bollocks!”


by P.D. Lesko Ward 4 Council member and Mayor Pro Tem Marcia Higgins has been repeatedly and roundly criticized by (generally) anonymous individuals on AnnArbor.com as being “the invisible woman.” When Higgins let her campaign domain name lapse four years ago, and didn’t renew it when she pulled her nominating petitions to run for office […]

July 22nd, 2013 | Posted in Ann Arbor Politics,Fact Check,Featured,Politics,Weekly Whoppers | Read More »

Local News Site Snaps Incumbent’s Political Tighty Whities With Debate Coverage


by P.D. Lesko The AnnArborChronicle.com recently called out AnnArbor.com politics reporter Ryan Stanton for accepting an AP reporting award for a news piece that misinterpreted available data. In the same piece, the news blog also called out former AA.com Kontent King Tony Dearing for being ethically challenged. It’s uncommon for news sites to slam the […]

July 22nd, 2012 | Posted in Ann Arbor Politics,City Council,Elections,Fact Check,Featured,Politics,Weekly Whoppers | Read More »

WEEKLY WHOPPER: Mayor Claims City “Not in Hiring Mode Since ’06.” Records Reveal Almost 1,000 FT & PT Hires Since ’06


In 2004, John Hieftje appointed a Blue Ribbon Panel to study potential changes to the city’s employee pension system. Among the recommendations, was the restructuring of the Board of Trustees to remove city managers and employees. In essence, city employees control the Board, and according to the report from the Blue Ribbon Panel, “Of the […]

June 27th, 2011 | Posted in Fact Check,Featured,Weekly Whoppers | Read More »

WEEKLY WHOPPER: In Ann Arbor Just 21 of The City’s 300 Miles Of Roads Are in Poor Condition (It’s Obviously Local Drivers Who Are Cracked)


The Street Repair Millage is up for renewal in 2011, and the city staff want to ask for a tax increase to have the City pay for sidewalk repair, something Ann Arbor did for many years using, yes, the City’s own money. Then, John Hieftje’s administration got the bright idea that Ann Arbor citizens could […]

June 15th, 2011 | Posted in Fact Check,Featured,Infrastructure,Weekly Whoppers | Read More »

WEEKLY WHOPPER: Ann Arbor Mayor Claims University Police At Disposal of City


On April 14, 2011, AnnArbor.com reported that John Hieftje said, “Ann Arbor has more police officers than most think. In addition to the 124 sworn officers in the Ann Arbor Police Department, he said the University of Michigan has 54 officers and they’re available to assist the city in emergency situations.” An official with the University […]

April 20th, 2011 | Posted in Fact Check,Police,Safety,Weekly Whoppers | Read More »

WEEKLY WHOPPER: “35 Staff Journalists. 407 Years of Experience.”


Newspaper executives routinely exaggerate circulation numbers. They fib about pass along rates (how many people handle a single copy of a newspaper). Newspapers have a well deserved reputation of less than honest reporting when it comes to their own financial and circulation numbers. To counter this decades-long problem in the publishing industry, according to a piece published […]

April 13th, 2011 | Posted in Fact Check,Weekly Whoppers | Read More »

WEEKLY WHOPPER: Ann Arbor Observer Prints Claim That, “40 Percent of Property” in A2 off Tax Rolls


Headline: Small town monthly tabloid newspaper supported by advertising gets circulated free of charge to most homes in the city. Lots of human interest pieces, history, restaurant reviews, and peeks into the nooks and crannies of the town. It was a recipe for success cooked up by the Hunts (Don and Mary) when they launched […]

April 5th, 2011 | Posted in Fact Check,Weekly Whoppers | Read More »

Weekly Whopper: “The Community Wants us to Focus More Sharply on Local News Reporting.”


Sometimes, other people beat A2Politico to the punch, and that’s perfectly fine. In fact, sometimes it’s a bit of a relief. The Weekly Whopper this time around goes to AnnArbor.com Kontent King (Chief Content Officer) Tony Dearing for his incredible assertion that the news site gave the heave-ho to close to one-third of its newsroom […]

March 17th, 2011 | Posted in Fact Check,Weekly Whoppers | Read More »

Weekly Whopper: “Ann Arbor’s Long Term Debt Has Increased from in $119M in 1999 to $246M in 2010.”


On March 3, 2011 Council member Christopher Taylor sent out an email to Ward Three constituents that purported to “explain” the extent and reasons for the city’s ballooning debt load. AnnArbor.com published Taylor’s assertions in its print version, and the next day followed up online with a piece that excerpted portions of Taylor’s email. Taylor […]

March 10th, 2011 | Posted in Fact Check,Weekly Whoppers | Read More »

Weekly Whopper: “We are blessed to have one of the largest football programs in the country.”


The University of Michigan’s Athletic Director Dave Brandon (pictured, left) is a confused man who has, obviously, never understood that value for money means paying the least amount of money for the most value. In a January 7, 2011 entry about the firing of Rich Rodriguez I wrote this: I want to start with sports […]

March 3rd, 2011 | Posted in Fact Check,Sports,Weekly Whoppers | Read More »

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