Michigan promotional ad in the Wall Street Journal sent an unintended message

| Wednesday, January 9, 2013
| |

A full-page ad yesterday in the Wall Street Journal was designed to let the business world know that Michigan has become a friendlier place for investment now that it has become the nation's 24th right-to-work state.

The ad was purchased by the Michigan Economic Development Corp. and carried the "Pure Michigan" logo.

Right to work,  tax cuts, fewer regulations and new investment incentives have created "the perfect storm of opportunity, resources and passion" in Michigan, the ad said.

Huh? As Ann Arbor blogger Mark Maynard pointed out, a perfect storm "isn't generally considered a good thing." Says Maynard:

I’ve actually read The Perfect Storm. The book is about a desperate sea captain, who, in hopes of making a big financial score, heads his ship into a colossal storm front in search of elusive swordfish, putting the lives of his crew on the line. And, guess what? There were no survivors!
That certainly isn't the image Michigan intended to create in its Wall Street Journal ad.

But the political climate in the state is likely to be stormy for some time, thanks to Republicans who rammed a right-to-work bill through the Legislature's lame-duck session last month.

A group called We Are Michigan was planning to hold a "Walk of Shame" to welcome lawmakers back to Lansing this morning. It also planned to deliver "broken cookies for broken promises" to lawmakers that voted in favor of right to work.

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