The Lansing State Journal published an editorial blasting the state of Michigan for forcing independent day care owners into a union — the subject of the Mackinac Center Legal Foundation's lawsuit, Loar v. DHS. The piece begins:

If you received an unemployment check, do you think that qualifies you as a member of some kind of “unemployed union”? Would you expect the state, on your behalf, to deduct money from your payment to unionize you against some obscure agency that the state itself created?

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Ridiculous, right? Well, it appears the Granholm administration has created a similar scheme with day-care providers who receive payments from the state to watch the children of the needy.

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[C]ollecting union dues from subsidy payments by using an "interlocal agreement" appears to be nothing more than a ploy to advance a particular group's interests without the messy involvement of the Legislature or the people of this state.

Loar v. DHS was appealed to the Michigan Supreme Court last week.

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Michael Van Beek, director of education policy at the Mackinac Center, weighed in on the effects of early childhood education in an Op-Ed for the Dearborn Times-Herald. Comparing a Michigan-specific study to a national study of Head Start, Van Beek wrote, "These conflicting findings demonstrate that spending on early education is not the wise investment that advocates claim it is."

He concluded:

The results from Georgia and Oklahoma, as well as the recent Head Start study, should signal to policymakers that low-income preschool programs provide dubious long-term educational benefits. Expanding these types of programs when their effectiveness has yet to be proven is imprudent.

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