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 · Letters · Letters 6/23/08
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Letters 6/23/08

- June 23rd, 2008
Swan song
Over the last seven years, I’ve devoted myself and a great deal of my time and dedication to the music scene here in Northern Michigan.
I‘ve been involved with organizing the food drive for the Tom Wright Project at the Dennos Museum. I‘ve created the M.E.P. program for Grand Traverse probationary youths at Northstar productions.
I helped create a successful battle of the bands, have formed several bands, and played for such charitable causes as the motorcycle rodeo for disabled veterans, for the Betsie River Labor Day disabled veterans party. I‘ve hosted several open mic shows and opened a studio where local musicians can come to practice for little or no money at all. It’s not about the money, it’s about the music, it’s about the people.
On June 4 I received several phone calls informing me of an attack on my character and my name. The callers wondered if this was a stage bit for the audience by Steve Normandin on the radio. Who is Steve Normandin? He’s better known as Omelette of WKLT’s Omelette and Finster morning show. I was called a liar, a backstabber and manipulative, and in past weeks received calls regarding comments they made on the air, stating my band, The Mob, had broken up.
You wonder why? I’ll tell you. I supported Omelette and Finster from the moment they hit the air, thinking here’s a couple of guys that are all about the people. I donated my time to record a demo CD for the show featuring Finster singing “I’ve been everywhere, man.” I even helped create the Twisted Finster band out of my studio, holding auditions for the project as well as rehearsals. Bet you readers and listeners didn’t know that.
Hell, I even got Mister Windy a job! All because I believed they were for the people. But they’re not... they’re about the ratings!
Here’s where it all goes wrong: earlier this year I held auditions for a female vocalist for my band, The Mob. Many came, many tried, but we chose the best. This woman is a single mother with a heart of gold and a voice to match. Her name is Crystal Wilcox. You readers and listeners might know her as 95.5 The Zone‘s very own Mizz Crystal.
We chose her for her talents, not her radio connection, all in the name of creating a more entertaining aspect to our fans.
But Omelette and Finster seem to think I’ve betrayed them and have taken it upon themselves to ridicule me ON THE AIR over this!
Now I know radio stations are competitive, but I never knew they could be so childish. Isn’t there enough anger and hatred in this world? Isn’t life just a little too short for such pettiness? Does Traverse City have to tune in and hear one of their very own being torn apart by a Northern Michigan wanna-be with a radio show? As far as the Godfather is concerned, Steve Normandin is no more than a fudgie with a microphone and a sidekick.

Don Swan • TC

Take Lyme seriously
I am enraged at the number of people that have written letters to the editor of this publication, critical of the doctors that diagnose and treat lyme disease.
As one who has experienced some improvement from such treatment after years of debilitating symptoms, I am very grateful my doctor stuck her neck out to do so.
Interestingly there was a recent WebMD article that reports new research indicating that not only is Lyme disease a reality, the particular strain found here in the U.S. is the same virulent strain found in Europe. Those criticizing doctors that diagnose and treat patients with Lyme, or bash folks that have Lyme disease are in for a very rude awakening. As time goes by, few will be left that won’t have personal experience -- either themselves or someone close to them - with Lyme disease and co-infections. Count on it.

Diane Bailey • SE Michigan

Bring back our trains
Back in 1910 before the automobile changed the American lifestyle, railways ruled. In those days the children of Redridge here in the U.P. went to school by train. The Soo Line Copper Country Limited ran from Calumet to Chicago. Groceries came to the Copper Country by rail to the Cahodas-Paoli wholesale grocery and were delivered by horse and wagon to various locations around the Keweenaw. Michigan was interlaced by railways.
The automobile freed us from train schedules and one-by-one rail service was shut down. The rail bed and tracks remained, but they were taken up. That was a mistake.
In 1992 I wrote about the consequences of the end of oil. (“Big Changes facing us when world oil supply runs out” -- Daily Mining Gazette) and now it’s happening. With the end of affordable oil, we must look for alternatives.
Electric cars require batteries that require expensive exotic metals which, in turn, need lots of fresh water for production. Water is also in short supply. You cannot maintain the current fleet of airliners on canola oil and ethanol, for it would take all of the arable land in the country to produce biofuels, leaving nothing for food production.
In the 1950s, thanks to the vision of President Eisenhower, we created the interstate highway system. Now those highways are wearing out and driving on them is getting more and more expensive.
What we need now, as air travel becomes a luxury for the rich, is a return of the railway. With new technology, magnetic trains can travel at 240 miles an hour, outperforming airlines in portal-to-portal service.
It’s too bad the rails were taken up. The snowmobile trails that occupy those roadbeds won’t be much use when recreation vehicles disappear for lack of fuel. We need those road beds for future light rail commuters and connections to big cities when there are no other alternatives. Vision anyone? Or shall we wait for a crisis of economic collapse first?

Harley Sachs • Houghton

Come back Home
When can our troops come home from Iraq? “That’s not too important,” said John McCain when he was asked this month on NBC’s “Today” show. But how does that sound to families who have a loved one serving in Iraq, who live for the day when they can see their child, spouse, or parent again, alive and in one piece? I thought McCain was out of touch with us before, but this takes the cake.
From what McCain has said about continuing his war in Iraq, he does not care one bit about what most of us want. Most Iraqis want us out of their country, too. But he has said he would keep us in Iraq for another five years, or as he excitedly told one reporter, maybe “a hundred years” or “a thousand or million years”. What mood swings the man has!

Doug Long • New Mexico

McCain said in March of this year, “No one has supported President Bush on Iraq more than I have”. Yet now he conveniently tries to distance himself from Bush. If McCain is elected president, we will be dragged down by another four years of Bush policies.

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