Michigan's economy has been one of the worst of all 50 states during the past few years. As many of you know, we *were* the world's largest producer of automobiles during the last 100 years. We are home to GM, Ford, Chrysler and some of the largest auto suppliers. Thinking back just a few years ago, everyone here worked directly or indirectly for the American auto industry. My father, my grand father, my neighbors, all my friend's fathers, and all the males in my family that lived in Michigan worked for the car industry. (South Eastern) Michigan was in a way like those rural mining towns back in the day, everyone worked in one industry, and you always thought you would grow up to do the same. I love cars, until a few years ago I loved the fact I lived in the middle of it all. While driving to class I would usually see an unreleased prototype (m-plate) car almost everyday! Cars would always be the topic of conversation with my family, my friends, and the random guy that sat next to me in class. Of course Detroit has been a dump since before I was born, but once you are out of wayne county, the rest of southeast Michigan (including oakland county) was a thriving area with a strong middle class (and a strong upper class). Fast forward to present day (2007) and its a very different story. My dad was let go from a GM supplier a few years ago, but has managed to get a job working for his friend's trucking company. The Ford Wixom Assembly Plant (very close to house) just closed its doors, and many (including my neighbor) were let go as the replacement vehicles were moved to Hermosillo, Mexico. Job cuts are endless in Michigan, and almost everyone that I knew that once worked for the US auto industry, from the UAW factory worker, to the white collar manager, is now unemployed. Many were able to find jobs in other industries or they simply left the state to look for bigger and brighter things. The downfall of the US auto industry has crippled Michigan's economy, even a large local grocery store chain has gone bankrupt as the states economy is in ruins. The housing market here is one of the worst in the country, you can't sell your home if you wanted to. Governor Jennifer Granholm has tried hard to attract other industries to the state (something that is needed and will take a very long time), and successfully got Google to open an office in Ann Arbor (close to U of M). Everyone blames her for the state's problems, but sadly I firmly believe there is nothing the state government can do to turn around the economy in the short term as it is tied to much to the auto industry. I've had many of my close friends leave the state looking for opportunity in other states. We have good Universities here, but the college tuition keeps going up. MSU might be raising their's by 17%. I know many people that live in Michigan are still doing great (I'm actually doing fairly well right now), but its got to be hard for them not to notice what is happening here. I do web design for local (automotive based) small-mid sized businesses (and a larger one you may have heard of), but they are hurting so badly that I'm afraid I may be out of work soon. I do not blame the Japanese, the UAW, or anyone else with lame excuses that people around here have come up with to explain why we are doing so badly. The bad management of the American auto industry is at fault. period. In the long run playing the blame game doesn't solve this state's problems so its not even worth thinking about. I am still a college student and highly considering studying abroad to get away from this place. I have a long life ahead of me and moving to another state is a serious option, so my question to everyone else is: am I dooming my future by staying in Michigan?