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 · Features · Roseanne Barr in the house
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Roseanne Barr in the house

Rick Coates - February 15th, 2010
Roseanne Barr in the house. Comic superstar headlines TC Comedy Festival
By Rick Coates
The “Domestic Goddess” Roseanne (yes, she is part of that first name club) will headline the first TC Comedy Festival this weekend. She will appear Saturday night at the State Theatre (tickets are sold out but as is the case with TC Film Festival, there will be a standby line and there is always a possibility that a few tickets might become available).
Roseanne dominated sitcom TV in the ‘90s with her show of the same name. For nine seasons she portrayed Roseanne Conner, whose husband was played by John Goodman. The show was number one in the ratings for two seasons and was always in the top eight shows watched weekly during its run from 1988-1997.
The TV show evolved out of her stand-up routine that she crafted in the early ‘80s, portraying the unglamorized typical housewife in working class America. She became a favorite on the new Comedy Channel and made late night appearances with Johnny Carson.
After her successful sitcom run, she hosted her own late night show for two seasons, portrayed the Wicked Witch of the West for the Madison Square Garden production of the Wizard of Oz. She made a variety of other television appearances.
Her career has seen its share of personal tribulations with her very public divorce from husband Tom Arnold to her failed attempt to sing the National Anthem at a San Diego Padres game. Through it all Roseanne has kept her chin up, overcome adversity and returned to her roots on the stand up comedy circuit. She has written a couple of books, won Emmy and Golden Globe Awards and remains at the top of the comedy world.
She took time out of her busy schedule to share a few thoughts and give an exclusive interview to Northern Express:

Northern Express: How is the stand-up comedy scene different than when you started?
Roseanne: There are more women out there today. When I started it was the best and worst of times. It was tough for women. But also back then there was a golden age of comedy clubs for awhile and a comic like me or Jerry Seinfeld could hit the big time with a network TV show. I mean we’ve got Wanda Sykes and George Lopez getting their shots, right now, but money is tight right now, so it is tough.

NE: There has been talk about you returning to sitcom TV with a new show. What is the status?
Roseanne: Well, you know the health care legislation debate and all the back-and-forth and picking it apart, and there’s gridlock and arguing and indecision and everybody calls each other names and then there’s more blabbing and frantic inactivity and nothing actually comes of it? It’s like that, except more complicated and less productive.

NE: Roseanne had a nine-year run, pretty impressive and very hard for a sitcom, was it stressful trying to develop material to remain on top or did it come naturally?
Roseanne: It naturally came stressful. Sometimes it was like having 20-pound twins - breech birth. Other times, we’d all go home after a week of 12-16 hour days, look at our personal/family lives going to hell and -- bingo -- say wow, that’s another episode.

NE: Comedy is often topical; is your current show topical about you or your observations of the world around you?
Roseanne: It’s observational and wide-ranging, but I always try to have something to say about the big splashy front page stuff we’re all hit with. I mean, Sarah Palin, Tiger Woods, John Edwards, the news is like a clown car - except not quite that classy.

NE: On the Red Carpet at the new Michael Moore film you said you were working on geriatric porn. Just a joke or do you think it is a good idea?
Roseanne: My marketing geniuses and I are giving it another look. I think it could be good once people get over their closed-minded and prejudicial, you know, waves of nausea. I heard there was a Rush Limbaugh and Nancy Pelosi sex tape out there. Let’s hope it stays out there.

NE: Michael Moore has been a blessing to Northern Michigan with the film festival, State Theatre restoration, and now this new comedy festival. You are obviously a fan of Michael’s - your comments on him?
Roseanne: Fan is too casual a word. I’m in awe of the guy. He’s a brave, committed citizen who could easily lay low and live high, but he puts himself on the line and says things that Americans and the world, for that matter, need to hear. There’s no monolith big enough to intimidate or discourage him. Economically, Michigan is Ground Zero and a battlefield for the working class and Michael is in front carrying a righteous banner.

NE: How would you describe President Obama’s first year as President?
Roseanne: No good deed goes unpunished. I wish they’d have jammed things through harder in the beginning and been less about cooperation and bipartisanship. Now, it’s the old ‘pushing a car up a hill with a rope’ situation.

NE: What do you think President Bush is doing in his retirement?
Roseanne: As little as possible, I hope. He’s done more than enough and we’re deep in some holes as a result.

NE: Finally, you have a long career mixed with success and challenges; you are among the funniest and best comedians of your generation. When you think about the future where do you see yourself going professionally?
Roseanne: Full-time, not-for-profit nut farmer/writer/part-time standup comic/actress/small-time philanthropist/world community granny activist/recluse/gadfly in Hawaii.

NE: Thanks Roseanne.
Roseanne: Not so fast pal, I remember you from my show in Mt. Pleasant back in 1986. You were hitting on me at the bar afterwards. I am not upset but I get even; be afraid be very afraid.

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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