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 · Music · Rhythm Devils
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Rhythm Devils

Rick Coates - August 16th, 2010
The Rhythm Devils carry on a Dead tradition
By Rick Coates
The Hoxeyville Music Festival continues to grow in stature within the music community. Stepping beyond the confines of a local band festival, they added some national headliners last year. The result was so successful that they have kicked it up a notch this year with The Rhythm Devils.
Any “Deadhead” knows that The Rhythm Devils are Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann, the drumming duo of The Grateful Dead. The group evolved out of those improvisational drumming and percussion sets that took place at most Dead concerts. After the death of Jerry Garcia in 1995, The Dead disbanded and its members became involved in several musical projects and bands.
The Rhythm Devils will headline this weekend’s Hoxeyville Music Festival along with Keller Williams. While Williams is now on his own tour, he was a part of The Rhythm Devils earlier in the summer and will certainly join them on stage.
Kreutzmann and Hart took some time out while on a brief break from touring to answer a few questions by phone:

Northern Express: Everyone knows that you guys were known as The Rhythm Devils, but how did you get the name?
Mickey Hart: Jerry (Garcia) gave it to us. one night at a show he looked over at Bill and me and said, ‘you guys are the Rhythm Devils,’ and it just took.

NE: How do you make it having two drummers in The Dead?
Bill Kreutzmann: We have differing personalities that really complement each other and we would rehearse for two or three hours before the rest of the guys would show up. We felt having two drummers sounded redundant, so we worked out a system of who was going to play what and instead of duplication, we wanted to expand the sound.

NE: Okay, you guys also have been touring on and off as The Dead for the past few years with original members Bob Weir and Phil Lesh along with Jeff Chimenti and Warren Haynes. Now everyone is off on other projects. Is there a plan for The Dead to get back together and tour in the future?
Kreutzmann: Well those other guys are out in the band Further. So we will see. I guess it is a mystery right now. To be honest, I am really into making new music right now and I needed a break. I have some other projects, as does Mickey, and right now our focus is on The Rhythm Devils.

NE: Fair enough. Describe the concept behind The Rhythm Devils.
Hart: It is quite different in a sense. I like to describe it this way: It’s like a super friendly rhythm snake that has wrapped itself around the world a few times and now it’s coming our way. It’s electric; it’s got rhythm, has words and flies. Certainly, Robert Hunter who we have known for years, is the driving force behind this music, he has written his heart on these songs.
Kreutzmann: Yes, the music is percussion-driven and Robert Hunter, who collaborated with Jerry on a lot of the Grateful Dead songs, wrote these songs exclusively for us. We will also perform some of the familiar Grateful Dead songs in a different way. The music all is very danceable.

NE: You almost have to do some Dead tunes when you guys get together?
Hart: When we get together we get into a groove, and everyone around us gets drawn in. Our view is that anything we do together, including The Grateful Dead, is a work in progress. We will never leave behind our roots. it will also be part of who we are, but with the Rhythm Devils we have created an identity as well, and with that music we look to the future of who we will be.”

NE: What are your projects after the tour ends?
Kreutzmann: I am looking to release a new album with my band, 7 Walkers.
Hart: I am working on the Rhythms of the Universe, a project that is quite involved. I am currently working with leading scientists to capture raw light waves from space and then transform those light waves into sound waves. Afterwards using those sounds to compose universal music. Basically I am exploring what the universe sounds like.

The Rhythm Devils will perform on the main-stage at Hoxeyville Music Festival Saturday night following Keller Williams. To listen to samples of their music search for videos on youtube. For more information go to www.rhythmdevils.net and to purchase tickets to the Hoxeyville Music Frestival check out www.hoxeyville.com

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