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 2/6/03
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Letters 2/6/03

Various - February 6th, 2003
Boycott the true fascist

Occasionally -- know thy enemy and all -- I tune in to Rush Limbaugh. I was particularly interested in what his spin might be on the recent peace demonstrations. After all, the “Talent on Loan From God“ has the proper view on everything, and I was not surprised to hear him say that those calling for no war are “anti-Americans“ and “fascists“.
Fascism is defined as “a system of govemment that exercises a dictatorship of the extreme right, typically through the merging of state and business leadership, together with belligerent nationalism.“ Now who does that really sound like?
I have a position dealing with the public, and very few of the people I talk to are for another oil war. So, using Mr. L.‘s logic, I am apparently surrounded by fascist anti-Americans, yet, somehow, they don‘t worry me as much as some others do.
However, improper name-calling and hate-mongering by those like Rush is neither mature nor nice. The odds of me reading the dictionary to the Great (in the sense of girth) One on the air seem pretty small, so I‘ve been calling businesses which advertise on his show to tell them I‘m one of the millions of people insulted by Rush and I, for one, will not spend my hard earned dollars on those who support his program. Results have varied from polite brush-offs (“The ad agency did it“) to promises of a letter from consumer affairs. Corporate America is usually pretty nervous about negative publicity.
If every non-fascist in radioland made a few calls, Rush would go away. History shows people tend to tire of the ugly and oppressive. The Berlin Wall was pretty big, but it came down. The same can be said about Rush -- he‘s pretty big right now, but he too can fall.

Bob VanderLewn • Manistee

Cruelty to horses

Please do not take Premarin. Please do not pay for cruelty. Tell your daughters, your mothers, your sisters, your aunts, and your friends.“ -- Bea Arthur
This year, approximately 75,000 mares throughout North Dakota and Canada will be impregnated and confined to cramped stalls so their estrogen-rich urine can be collected. Most of the foals will be killed before their first birthday. To produce Premarin, pregnant mares are tethered to the front of stalls measuring just 3 1/2 to 5 feet wide and 8 feet long. For six months, while their bodies are producing the most estrogen, these mares are unable to take more than a step or two in any direction, turn around, or even lie down comfortably.
Lameness often develops. Mares are forced to wear cumbersome rubber urine-collection bags, which chafe their legs and cause sores, 24 hours a day to collect their urine. They are also denied free access to water so that their urine will yield more concentrated estrogens. This can lead to renal and liver problems and cause the mares to struggle and injure themselves during water-distribution times to get to the water they so desperately crave. So that they can be put right back into production the next winter, the mares are re-impregnated within days of giving birth.
A few months after giving birth, they are separated from their foals and put back on the “pee line.“ Fertile mares may go through this same grueling cycle year after year.
When the mares become old, infertile, or crippled, they are auctioned off for slaughter.

George Sarkisian • Farmington Hills

Unbelieveable jail plan

It is unbelievable that the past Leelanau County Commissioners had a groundbreaking ceremony in the dead of winter for a jail at a site where soil tests have been inconclusive. Not only is it eight miles from the courthouse, but site acreage far exceeds need. However, one consolation is that the other 36 acres will make an excellent habitat for deer, raccoons, and skunks at taxpayer‘s expense.
Whatever happened to the 900 petition signatures requesting the board give the people a complete plan, cost, and vote? The board never responded which is typical of government officials at all levels. This board had their own agenda with government offices at three different locations and could care less about taxpayers who will have to come up with the $25 million construction dollars.
Wexford voters turned down mileage for a jail miles from the courthouse. Every jail in the area now has excess beds, so who will use the 72 beds? The governor has the authority to direct excess space to be used to house prison inmates to preclude prison expansion. If this county proceeds, it will find itself strapped just like most states and local governments are today because of lost revenue.
Well over a million dollars has already been spent since 1989 on studies, legal fees and two parcels of questionable land without so much as a plan or vote. But, the groundbreaking ceremony had to be held to cement the last board action before the new seven-member board took office.
I certainly hope that the new board will resurrect the 900 signature petition and take the requested action. There is no reason why the taxpayers of Leelanau County should be burdened with an unbelievable expenditure to satisfy the interest of a few commissioners.
It is in the best interest of every voter, taxpayer, and citizen of Leelanau to have county facilities constructed at the most accessible location for all, at an acceptable cost and be most efficient and time saving operation to serve everyone at the lowest annual cost.

Wanda Marie Lake, RN • Jackson

Bush‘s tax plan

When it comes to the economy, President Bush is demonstrating genuine leadership. The economic growth package he recently proposed takes us in the right direction by accelerating the successful tax cuts of 2001, providing marriage penalty relief, and providing incentives for individuals and small businesses to save and invest.
Contrary to the class warfare rhetoric attacking the president‘s plan, the proposal helps everyone who pays taxes, and especially the middle class. This year alone, 92 million taxpayers will receive an immediate tax cut averaging $1,083 - and 46 million married couples will get back an average of $1,714. That‘s not pocket change for a family struggling through uncertain economic times. This plan gets people back to work and helps every sector of our economy.

Joshua Handell • Saginaw
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