Letters 10-24-2016

It’s Obama’s 1984 Several editions ago I concluded a short letter to the editor with an ominous rhetorical flourish: “Welcome to George Orwell’s 1984 and the grand opening of the Federal Department of Truth!” At the time I am sure most of the readers laughed off my comments as right-wing hyperbole. Shame on you for doubting me...

Gun Bans Don’t Work It is said that mass violence only happens in the USA. A lone gunman in a rubber boat, drifted ashore at a popular resort in Tunisia and randomly shot and killed 38 mostly British and Irish tourists. Tunisian gun laws, which are among the most restrictive in the world, didn’t stop this mass slaughter. And in January 2015, two armed men killed 11 and wounded 11 others in an attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. French gun laws didn’t stop these assassins...

Scripps’ Good Deed No good deed shall go unpunished! When Dan Scripps was the 101st District State Representative, he introduced legislation to prevent corporations from contaminating (e.g. fracking) or depleting (e.g. Nestle) Michigan’s water table for corporate profit. There are no property lines in the water table, and many of us depend on private wells for abundant, safe, clean water. In the subsequent election, Dan’s opponents ran a negative campaign almost solely on the misrepresentation that Dan’s good deed was a government takeover of your private water well...

Political Definitions As the time to vote draws near it’s a good time to check into what you stand for. According to Dictionary.com the meanings for liberal and conservative are as follows:

Liberal: Favorable to progress or reform as in political or religious affairs.

Conservative: Disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc., or to restore traditions and limit change...

Voting Takes A Month? Hurricane Matthew hit the Florida coast Oct. 6, over three weeks before Election Day. Bob Ross (Oct. 17th issue) posits that perhaps evacuation orders from Governor Scott may have had political motivations to diminish turnout and seems to praise Hillary Clinton’s call for Gov. Scott to extend Florida’s voter registration deadline due to evacuations...

Clinton Foundation Facts Does the Clinton Foundation really spend a mere 10 percent (per Mike Pence) or 20 percent (per Reince Priebus) of its money on charity? Not true. Charity Watch gives it an A rating (the same as it gives the NRA Foundation) and says it spends 88 percent on charitable causes, and 12 percent on overhead. Here is the source of the misunderstanding: The Foundation does give only a small percentage of its money to charitable organizations, but it spends far more money directly running a number of programs...

America Needs Change Trump supports our constitution, will appoint judges that will keep our freedoms safe. He supports the partial-birth ban; Hillary voted against it. Regardless of how you feel about Trump, critical issues are at stake. Trump will increase national security, monitor refugee admissions, endorse our vital military forces while fighting ISIS. Vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence will be an intelligent asset for the country. Hillary wants open borders, increased government regulation, and more demilitarization at a time when we need strong military defenses...

My Process For No I will be voting “no” on Prop 3 because I am supportive of the process that is in place to review and approve developments. I was on the Traverse City Planning Commission in the 1990s and gained an appreciation for all of the work that goes into a review. The staff reviews the project and makes a recommendation. The developer then makes a presentation, and fellow commissioners and the public can ask questions and make comments. By the end of the process, I knew how to vote for a project, up or down. This process then repeats itself at the City Commission...

Regarding Your Postcard If you received a “Vote No” postcard from StandUp TC, don’t believe their lies. Prop 3 is not illegal. It won’t cost city taxpayers thousands of dollars in legal bills or special elections. Prop 3 is about protecting our downtown -- not Munson, NMC or the Commons -- from a future of ugly skyscrapers that will diminish the very character of our downtown...

Vote Yes It has been suggested that a recall or re-election of current city staff and Traverse City Commission would work better than Prop 3. I disagree. A recall campaign is the most divisive, costly type of election possible. Prop 3, when passed, will allow all city residents an opportunity to vote on any proposed development over 60 feet tall at no cost to the taxpayer...

Yes Vote Explained A “yes” vote on Prop 3 will give Traverse City the right to vote on developments over 60 feet high. It doesn’t require votes on every future building, as incorrectly stated by a previous letter writer. If referendums are held during general elections, taxpayers pay nothing...

Beware Trump When the country you love have have served for 33 years is threatened, you have an obligation and a duty to speak out. Now is the time for all Americans to speak out against a possible Donald Trump presidency. During the past year Trump has been exposed as a pathological liar, a demagogue and a person who is totally unfit to assume the presidency of our already great country...

Picture Worth 1,000 Words Nobody disagrees with the need for affordable housing or that a certain level of density is dollar smart for TC. The issue is the proposed solution. If you haven’t already seen the architect’s rendition for the site, please Google “Pine Street Development Traverse City”...

Living Wage, Not Tall Buildings Our community deserves better than the StandUp TC “vote no” arguments. They are not truthful. Their yard signs say: “More Housing. Less Red Tape. Vote like you want your kids to live here.” The truth: More housing, but for whom? At what price..

Home · Articles · News · Region Watch · Boyne makes a splash with...
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Boyne makes a splash with new waterpark

- May 26th, 2005
Northern Michigan‘s newest waterpark resort opens its floodgates Memorial Day weekend with the debut of Avalanche Bay at Boyne Mountain.
The indoor waterpark is part of a $70 million resort development which includes the all-new Mountain Grand Lodge and Spa.
Boyne USA officials say the combined resort/waterpark represents the largest and most significant tourist development in the state, coming at a time when Michigan desperately needs tourist dollars.
With the downhill ski market growing iffy over the past few years due to warmer winters, the new resort gives Boyne Mountain a weatherproof boost for all seasons.
The new Mountain Grand Lodge and Spa is a 220-room four-star luxury condominium hotel that serves as the centerpiece of the Swiss-Austrian themed resort. Together with Avalanche Bay, the property offers a complete resort experience, featuring a variety of indoor and outdoor amenities with an 88,000 square foot indoor waterpark and an 18,000 square foot spa.
The Swiss-Austrian theme has required a Teutonic attention to detail with custom carpeting, wrought-iron work, hand-carved chairs, and hand-hewn timbers in the expansive lobby, and mantels in the guest rooms. The rooms also include a European touch of vintage posters, custom-made snow globes and cuckoo clocks, among other details. If the Old Country style gets wearisome,
visitors in the larger suites can fall back on the comforts of high-definition, 42-inch plasma TVs over the fireplace.
The 18,000 square foot Solace Spa housed in the Mountain Grand Lodge features an extensive menu of services inspired by the four seasons of Northern Michigan. The facility includes 19 treatment rooms, making it one of the largest in the Midwest.

On the waterpark side of the resort, visitors to Avalanche Bay will be greeted by a Clock Tower entrance. The giant clock’s chime and the mountain rumble of the park‘s Splasherhorn play structure signal the release of an 800-gallon avalanche of water on the guests below.
With 88,000 square feet of rides, slides, waves and pools, Boyne Mountain anticipates raising the bar for waterpark enthusiasts with its thematic treatment, toboggan and tube slides, Rip Zone surf simulator (the region’s first), climbing walls and towers, spacious locker and family changing areas and a mega-arcade with over 100 games.
Other amenities will include a 25 foot-climbing wall, oversized park characters for the entertainment of kids, including Fritz, the St. Bernard mascot, and a sophisticated array of moving murals on the walls.
Of note, the park will also reportedly offer day passes, with its opening planned for Friday, May 27. For more information and photos visit www.mountaingrandlodge.com and www.avalanchebay.com.
Down in the dumps
Would Michigan voters really vote to raise their trash collection fees just to spite Canada?
That‘s the assumption of house Democratic Leader Dianne Byrum, citing a survey of 600 residents by Public Sector Consultants.
The survey states that 70% of respondents would support a higher dumping charge to boost recycling in the state and that 96% are concerned about Toronto‘s daily shipments of trash to Michigan.
“The poll shows that Michigan‘s citizens want more recycling and less Canadian and out-of-state garbage,” Byrum said in a release. “A high dumping charge is the best solution because it will boost recycling and reduce imported trash.”
Respondents were asked if they would support a dumping charge higher than the current 21-cents-per-ton if it would support recycling programs across the state. Some 70% said they would support a $3-per-ton charge and 56% said they‘d support a $7.50-per-ton charge.
Missing from the release, however, is whether respondents were informed that they too would have to pay extra for imposing additional dumping charges on Canada.

Muddy water
The Great Lakes - along with streams and rivers in six upper Midwest states (Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin) - are being inundated with billions of gallons of raw human waste and other untreated sewage that cities and towns should be cleaning up, according to a new report issued by the nonprofit Environmental Integrity Project (EIP).
The report finds that the failure of Great Lakes states and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to address “combined sewer overflows” poses a major threat to public health and will degrade upper Midwest waterways for several decades to come if the sewer overflow problem is not brought under control.
The report also claims that, “more than half of the municipalities in the Great Lakes states do not meet even minimum Clean Water Act requirements for combined sewer overflows.”

Impeachment call
Local Veterans for Peace are backing a call to Congress to impeach President George Bush and Vice President Cheney.
The national organization is made up of military veterans, including those who served in WWII, Korea, Vietnam and the Gulf War. Members of the group have been active in antiwar demonstrations in a number of communities in Northern Michigan.
Veterans for Peace has sent letters to each member of the House and Senate claiming that the war is “increasingly unpopular with Americans“ and is a violation of the Constitution and federal law which the Executive branch of the government is sworn to uphold.
Not surprisingly, there has been no response from the Republican-controlled House and Senate.

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