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 · Other Opinions · Please don‘t vote
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Please don‘t vote

Stephen Tuttle - October 25th, 2010
Please Don‘t Vote
Please don’t vote. No, seriously. Why bother?
Let’s face it – all the candidates for every office are either
worthless or no better than the other guy or gal. We know this
because we’ve been told that for months now. One party is pretty much
just like the other and neither side seems to have more than an ounce
or two of common sense. Many of you are now counting on some tea party
candidate, or sympathizer, to really stir things up, restore the
Constitution, cut spending reduce taxes, blah, blah, blah. Or you
want some liberal to maintain or expand social services, tax the rich,
end the war, blah, blah, blah. Please. We all know they’ll be
co-opted by the special interest groups and Washington’s 40,000
lobbyists within a few weeks. Anything they say now will be so much
rhetorical dust by this time next year.
Besides, the polling place is off at some school you may or may not
know how to get to and the weather will probably be crummy and the
entire thing is just damned inconvenient.
So, please, don’t bother to vote.
And don’t worry about it. I, and others, will vote for you. No need
to thank us but you’re welcome.
We’ll decide which people represent you in Lansing and in Washington.
We’ll decide how high your taxes should be. Do you want them to be a
lot lower? Do you want the rich to pay more? Hey, we’ll take all that
into consideration.
What would you like us to do about Social Security and Medicare?
Would you like them to still be around when you or your children are
eligible to avail themselves of one or both? Pretty important
questions but there’s no need to trouble yourself with the
inconvenience of voting. We’ll make those decisions for you. Maybe
we’ll rescue one of them or maybe even both of them. We’ll let you
We know unemployment is at a crisis level here. And we’ve heard
nearly every candidate talk about “growing jobs”. They were all a
little weak on specifics with all their talk about sustainable
industry and energy and the so-called green jobs and re-inventing
Michigan. It all sounded like a lot of gibberish to us but we’re
willing to make the necessary sacrifices to sort out all this
silliness and figure it out for you. We’ll probably elect exactly the
right people to restore Michigan’s job picture and start everyone on
the road to recovery. Probably.
What about illegal immigration? Round ‘em up and send ‘em back or a
comprehensive immigration policy? Haven’t made up your mind? We’re
not sure ourselves but we’ll let you know what we decided after we’ve
made the decision. We’re pretty sure we’ll vote the way you wanted us
What do you want us to do about abortion? Are you a pro-lifer or a
pro-choicer? Well, frankly, we believe this is the kind of intensely
personal decision we’d rather not get into. So we’ll just vote our
conscience on this and you’ll just have to take our word for it that
we had your wishes in mind.
Before we get to any additional issues we should address the myth that
every vote counts. C’mon. Sure, in 1960, had just one person per
precinct voted for Richard Nixon instead of John Kennedy we’d have had
a different president. But that was a fluke. And in the 2000
presidential election in Florida... well, no one seems to be
absolutely sure just what the final vote count was but it was really,
really close. (By the way, for those Democrats who can’t seem to let
it go, George W. Bush won in Florida, was elected president and then
re-elected in 2004. All the whining and conspiracy theories in the
world will never change any of that.)
I was once involved in an election that ended in an actual tie on
election night and went through three recounts before my client won by
24 votes out of about 60,000 total ballots cast. A couple of others
ended up requiring recounts, too.
But don’t let any of that discourage you from staying home on Tuesday.
Those close elections are the exception, not the rule. At least I’m
pretty sure they are. Even the authors of “Freakonomics“ a best
seller of a few years ago, postulated that so few elections are close
that voting becomes an exercise that means little in terms of the
Some of you would like to overturn the healthcare reforms of the last
year. It’s entirely possible we voters will elect people who will try
to do just that. Or maybe not.
Others of you want to “restore our Constitution”. We’re not
completely sure what that means and were not aware it needs
restoration but we’ll try to keep it in mind.
How about foreign policy and the military? You want us to nuke Iran?
Or maybe get completely out of the Middle East? I’m sure we’ll find a
way to accommodate both positions because we’ve carefully weighed
every contingency and are fully prepared to protect your interests.
In fact, we’ve done that on all other issues, too. We voters are very
conscientious so you don’t have to be.
If the people we elect don’t happen to agree with you, so what?
They’re all the same anyway, right?
So don’t worry about a thing. Just stay home next Tuesday. We’ve got
your back.

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