Dan Mulder is staying away from the marching and chanting around the Capitol steps in Madison and staying put in his office and warehouse. But it’s not because he doesn’t have an opinion. Far from it.
Mulder is the general manager and chief executive officer of a local business employing 25 people. He’s seen costs skyrocket and health care insurance premiums continue to rise.
He describes himself as an independent — he did not vote for the recently inaugurated Gov. Scott Walker. These days, however, he says Walker’s plan on fixing the budget deficit, which includes removing public sector employees’ collective bargaining rights, is right on the mark.
“I just think [Walker] deserves an Oscar for standing up,” Mulder said. “He’s got the resilience and the constitution to stand up and take on this issue.
“He fully realizes and understands that you can’t pay with what you don’t have, so he’s trying to live within his means. And that’s something that is completely foreign as a concept to most government sectors because if they need more money, they just raise taxes. The people who are paying those taxes are saying, ‘We can’t pay any more’.”
Mulder is a proponent of a civil and rational dialogue and exchange of ideas. He says the protests and chaos happening at the Capitol is not the way to go about getting things done.
“He who is loudest, he who is most vocal, he who creates the most mayhem prevails in the day,” Mulder said, shaking his head. “That should never be what this process is about."
“It’s really tragic because this is somewhat akin to the Civil War. Not that we’re at that level and hopefully we won’t be. But you’ve got brother against brother, neighbor against neighbor—that’s how driven this argument is.”
As far as the Democratic legislators fleeing the state to prevent a vote on the controversial bill, Mulder says they were elected to do a job - and not just when they feel like it.
“The last time I woke up, we were in a democratic society,” Mulder said, adding that the November elections — which put both a Republican governor and Republican legislature in place—were a clear mandate that it’s their turn to try some solutions.
“That Republican administration has been put in place by public mandate. And now that they’re exercising that mandate there's a minority of the population that doesn’t want to conform to that. Then it’s not a democracy anymore.”
He concluded by saying if people aren’t careful, the situation could eventually turn into anarchy.
A company with roots in India is planning to nearly double its presence in Michigan.
Tata Technologies - part of the Mumbai-based Tata Group - is looking to fill 400 job openings primarily for its North American headquarters in Michigan. The company organized a job fair in Southfield, Michigan, just outside Detroit, to attract potential auto engineers, designers and product lifecycle managers.
Tata routinely works with the Unites States' largest auto manufacturers; one of its biggest partnerships is with Chrysler. The employees they are looking to hire will end up putting a lot of their skills to work within some of Tata's customers - which also include Ford and General Motors.
There’s very little for sale on the ice-lined shelves of Minneapolis’ Coastal Seafood that comes from the Gulf of Mexico.
But that doesn’t mean the Gulf oil disaster isn’t having a small ripple effect on the seafood industry in the Twin Cities.