Letters

Letters 11-28-2016

Trump should avoid self-dealing President-elect Donald Trump plans to turn over running of The Trump Organization to his children, who are also involved in the transition and will probably be informal advisers during his administration. This is not a “blind trust.” In this scenario Trump and family could make decisions based on what’s best for them rather than what’s best for the country...

Trump the change we need?  I have had a couple of weeks to digest the results of this election and reflect. There is no way the selection of Trump as POTUS could ever come close to being normal. It is not normal to have a president-elect settle a fraud case for millions a couple of months before the inauguration. It is not normal to have racists considered for cabinet posts. It is not normal for a president-elect tweet outrageous comments on his Twitter feed to respond to supposed insults at all hours of the early morning...

Health care system should benefit all It is no secret that the health insurance situation in our country is controversial. Some say the Affordable Care Act is “the most terrible thing that has happened to our country in years”; others are thrilled that, “for the first time in years I can get and afford health insurance.” Those who have not been closely involved in the medical field cannot be expected to understand how precarious the previous medical insurance structure was...

Christmas tradition needs change The Christmas light we need most is the divine, and to receive it we do not need electricity, probably only prayers and good deeds. But not everyone has this understanding, as we see in the energy waste that follows with the Christmas decorations...

CORRECTIONS & CLARIFICATIONS 

A story in last week’s edition about parasailing businesses on East Grand Traverse Bay mistakenly described Grand Traverse Parasail as a business that is affiliated with the ParkShore Resort. It operates from a beach club two doors down from the resort. The story also should have noted that prior to the filing of a civil lawsuit in federal court by Saburi Boyer and Traverse Bay Parasail against Bryan Punturo and the ParkShore Resort, a similar lawsuit was dismissed from 13th Circuit Court in Traverse City upon a motion from the defendant’s attorney. Express regrets the error and omission.

A story in last week’s edition about The Fillmore restaurant in Manistee misstated Jacob Slonecki’s job at Arcadia Bluffs Golf Course. He was a cook. Express regrets the error.

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Kristi Kates - July 28th, 2005
The Foos’ went from their original idea of an acoustic album to this, a double-disc that exercises both the Foos’ heavy-punk ambitions and their quieter abilities. Yet another foomination - er, rumination - mostly on relationships, Foo leader Dave Grohl still stays behind his wall, only peeking his head around lyrically to give a few scant glimpses into how he really thinks about things.  There are some solid songs here, but they’re mostly on the acoustic disc - the headbangin’ disc gives the impression that the band was a little too concerned about giving off the impression of rockin’ hard to actually cut loose and do so.  This latest Foo effort offers up a few solid tracks - but the Foos might’ve been better off if they’d concentrated on one collection of quality songs, instead of spreading themselves too thin. 


 
Bryan Adams - Room Service - Mercury

Canadian pop-rocker Bryan Adams used to be a big deal in the early ‘90s.  Heck, he’s still a big deal in Europe, much like David Hasselhoff.  But although this album’s concept is pretty cool - Adams reportedly recorded the 11 tracks of Room Service in various hotel rooms while on tour in Europe, hence the title - it doesn’t live up to its own hype.  His raspy, urgent voice still sounds pretty decent, given the genre, but the songs themselves are awfully generic, suggesting that Adams might end up playing fairground bills instead of arena rock shows. There are a couple of songs that you might want to snag as singles, if you’re a fan of that back-to-basics heartland rock formula (namely “This Side of Paradise” and “East Side Story”), but overall, it’s quite lukewarm - average, even - in both its songs and presentation.


Screaming Trees - Ocean of Confusion - Songs of Screaming Trees 1990-1996 - Sony Music

Screaming Trees, although they did have one radio hit with the uber-hooky “Nearly Lost You” (which also appeared on the soundtrack for the slice-of-Seattle-life flick Singles), never quite hit the stride that fellow Seattle-ites like Soundgarden and Alice in Chains did.  And that’s really a shame - which is something you’ll discover when you take a listen to some of their back catalog as revealed on this disc.  More experimental and psychedelic ‘60s than the bulk of the grunge bands that came out of their hometown, it rocks hard but still manages to showcase some gothic-meets-grunge lyricism and the gutteral, expressive vocals of bandleader Mark Lanegan.  Old-school Screaming Trees will find this a must have, while grunge fans in general will want to add this to their collection, even if they’re new to this Seattle band who are still rocking under the radar.


Backstreet Boys - Never Gone - Jive Records

The first BSB album in over five years from the Orlando, Florida boy band, now more men than boys, the group seems a little lost on this effort, and with good reason, since boy bands are finally out of vogue for the most part.  It’s somewhat admirable that they’re attempting to stage a comeback - well, maybe gutsy is a better word - but they didn’t strike out far enough from their original sound to make any kind of real impact.  They’re still not writing much of their own music, which probably contributes to their somewhat superficial sound - the harmonies are there, granted, but there isn’t much of a foundation to support the Boys’ vocals.  It’s not completely horrible - they do have a good production team behind them, and again, they’re trying and all - it’s just that the results aren’t really much of anything.




 
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