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 · Random Thoughts · Sorrentino‘s...
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Sorrentino‘s Situation

Robert Downes - January 10th, 2011
Sorrentino’s Situation
There was a shirtless photo of Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino of MTV’s
Jersey Shore in last week’s edition of Entertainment Weekly. The
Situation, of course, is world-famous for his abs, and looks to be ‘cut’
about as deep as the Grand Canyon.
Anyone who’s ever trained for a body building competition, a black
belt, or for their first marathon, can appreciate the kind of effort
that goes into Sorrentino’s level of fitness. But as any fitness junkie
knows, getting there is one thing -- staying there is another.
We‘re a bit of an ‘abs obsessed’ society, with gadgets such as the
Coaster Abs and Abs Circuit machines advertised on TV as ways to tone
your tummy. And has there ever been an issue of Men’s Health magazine
in its 24 years of publication that didn’t have a front page story
along the lines of this week’s “Strip Away Belly Fat”?
Some of the people in the infomercials look like they’ve taken obsession
with their abdominal muscles to the brink of madness. But for those
whose six-pack tends to be in the refrigerator rather than above the
belt loops, Sorrentino notes that there’s no easy route to a washboard
Sorrentino reportedly does 3-4 abdominal exercises every other day,
along with lower back exercises to complement the force of his ab
muscles. He reports on various websites that he does a half-hour cardio
workout in the gym 5-6 days each week along the lines of running,
swimming or cycling.
He also avoids sugary foods, cake, cookies, salty snacks, Coca-Cola and
other counter-productive junk foods. He favors clean-burning veggies and
protein, avoiding high-carb foods. He smokes cigarettes, but that’s a
prerequisite for Jersey Shore lounge lizards.
“I also do three or four very, very difficult exercises,” he tells Us
magazine. “They’re very, very difficult, done over months of time to
get used to it,” he adds for emphasis, noting that these may involve
hanging upside down. “It looks like I’m doing gymnastics.”
Sounds pretty tough. It makes you wonder though, Sorrentino is a
28-year-old former fitness trainer. What will he look like 10, 20, 30
years from now?
Pretty good if he keeps it up, but that -- as any Weight Watchers
success story can tell you -- is the tough part.
Persevering is the devil’s bargain in fitness. You might be able to
chisel your gut into something resembling Sorrentino’s belly. You might
knock yourself silly to achieve a sub-40-minute 10k. You might lose 300
lbs. and win The Biggest Loser’s grand prize. But holding on to that
peak moment of fitness or dietary denial -- that’s the hard part.
Staying motivated long past the chipper hard-body days of your 20s and
30s is the price of the fitness lifestyle. Will Sorrentino continue
with his “very, very difficult” abs workout for years on end, hanging
upside down like a fruit bat five times a week and doing endless
vertical crunches and hanging lifts? Or will he get bored silly by the
time he hits 40 and start that flabby slide into what passes for
normality in America? That’s ‘the situation’ faced by every lifetime
devotee to fitness.
Studies claim that muscle mass begins to decrease in a big way after
the age of 40. By one estimate, your skeletal muscle mass decreases by
up to 40% by the time you reach the age of 80.
But it doesn’t have to be so. According to the American College of
Sports Medicine, strength training twice a week on top of 20-30 minutes
of cardio each day can counteract a decline in muscle mass. This is why
you sometimes see weight trainers, yoga practitioners, runners and
cyclists in their 60s who still have the strength of people 30 years
younger; they’re locked into a lifestyle and their workouts and never
quit long enough to waste away.
It all gets back to persevering with a daily exercise plan and mixing
it up with different modalities: yoga, swimming, weight training,
pilates, walking/running, skiing, etc., when the same old grind gets to
be too much to endure.
So get moving and good luck -- your abs are counting on you. Who knows?
By this time next year your stomach may even be mistaken for that of
Mike Sorrentino‘s.

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