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 · Books · Books for Holiday Browsing
. . . .

Books for Holiday Browsing

Nancy Sundstrom - December 19th, 2002
Some of us anticipate the holiday season all year-long and approach it with an organized discipline that might even make Martha Stewart sit up and take notice. For the rest of us, it arrives before we know it, and then, as it happened this year with Thanksgiving falling so late in November, we find ourselves scrambling to get to all those plans we’ve been hatching since last year’s festivities.
Even though we‘re in the 12 days of Christmas mode, it’s not too late to seek out some extra help to make the season a little brighter. In that spirit, here are some recommendations for books on celebrating the holidays, from decorating tips and making handcrafted gifts to the historical roots of different celebrationsand, of course, entertaining.
They also make great gifts, and if you’re one of those who buys at the start of the new year for the nest Christmas, you can almost always find these marked down significantly. Thankfully, the information inside doesn’t date itself, making these reference books for years to come.

Christmas with Martha Stewart Living
by Martha Stewart (Editor) and the Editors of Martha Stewart Living
The key phrase here is the name, which pretty much speaks for itself, despite recent events. This one volume contains it all - ideas for recipes, gifts, decorations, and entertaining. While some of it seems to go a bit over the top, such as silver-leafed fruit at each place setting at Christmas dinner and boxes made of piped Swiss meringue, there are plenty of other accessible, imaginative and easy-to-follow directions that balance the book out and make it fun to read through and peruse.

Bon Appetit: The Christmas Season
by the Editors of Bon Appetit
This beautifully illustrated book leaves no possibility unexplored for a holiday meal, from a winter solstice supper to a New Year’s Day open house. The biggest meal of the season, Christmas Day dinner, gets the most attention here, with 11 different menus and more than 50 recipes. There are recipes for all the standard fare, such as roast turkey, goose, and lamb, to cocktail party fare like Layered Rice Salad with Red and Green Salsas and Wild Mushroom and Crab Cheesecake. An impressive dessert section offers a tantalizing range of delicacies that can be given as gifts or enjoyed at home.

Simply Christmas: Renew Your Holiday Spirit with Over 200 Hassle-free Projects
by Carol Field Dahlstrom
The emphasis is on indulging in holiday projects that are easy, enjoyable, and directly connect to the spirit of the season. There are simple ornaments, wreaths, baked goods, cards, luminaries, and the like, with templates and recipes to guide you. While many of these ideas can be found in other similar books, this one contains a number of new twists, such as how to incorporate your antique or primitive collectibles into a decorating scheme, and has a practical, personable tone to it.

Christmas All Through the House
by Better Homes and Gardens
Another one-stop holiday collection, this book is nicely divided into nine interesting chapters, beginning with how to set the mood inside and outside your home and ending with homemade gifts that can be enjoyed by young and old alike. Along the way, there are scores of delightful suggestions on some topics that aren’t often covered in other books of this sort, such as crafts that reflect the very first Christmas in Bethlehem, making a statement with your holiday tree, and unique packaging options for your gift giving.

Rose’s Christmas Cookies
by Rose Levy Beranbaum
This book has been around for more than a decade, and is still considered the benchmark for holiday baking. Beranbaum, author of the award-winning “The Cake Bible,“ offers up more than 60 mouth-watering and near-foolproof recipes that are of equal appeal to novice and experienced bakers. There are recipes for classics such as Scottish Shortbread, Chocolate-Dipped Melting Moments, Spritz Butter Cookies, and Pfeffernsse, as well as some of Beranbaum‘s own creations. Loaded with additional information on decorating, storage, ingredients, and technique, if you’re going to own a singular volume on cookie-making, it should be this one, because it’s likely you’ll refer to it all throughout the year.

Creating Christmas Memories
by Gwen Ellis and Pat Matuszak
A lavishly illustrated gift book devoted to great memory-making ideas, this is a book steeped in traditions, and draws from the Bible, Christmas carols, history and anecdotes while making specific suggestions for fun and educational family activities. The emphasis is on the Christian aspect of holiday celebration, and the book comes with an embossed, padded cover, foil stamping, and a ribbon marker.

Simplify Your Christmas: 100 Ways to Reduce the Stress and Recapture the Joy of the Holidays
by Elaine St. James
The author of the best-selling Simplicity series returns with a guide to taking stress out of the holidays by re-aligning one’s approach to priorities and sensibilities about what this time of year should and can mean. There’s a lighthearted touch to the material, reflected in tips like “Just Say No to Elmo,“ “Eliminate Turkey Torpor,“ and “Slay the Secret Santa.“ While they can occasionally veer from whimsical into eye-rolling, St. James still has a number of pragmatic, straightforward suggestions.

Simple Pleasures for the Holidays : A Treasury of Stories and Suggestions for Creating Meaningful Celebrations (Simple Pleasures Series)
by Susannah Seton
Dozens of stories, recipes, games, decorations, and easy crafts are the focus of Seton’s suggestions for less material ways to celebrate the holidays, which include not just Christmas, but Halloween, Chinese New Year, Mexican Day of the Dead, Guy Fawkes Day, Kwanzaa, and more. The premise is that shared experience is what people value most, and that holidays provide the venue to do that, which makes each one worth recognizing and celebrating. This is Seton’s fourth “Simple Pleasures“ book in the series, and it’s a winner.

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5