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 · Features · Lineup for Writers Series
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Lineup for Writers Series

Express Staff - January 23rd, 2012  

includes prize winners and professors

Novelists, reviewers, editors, screenwriters, and even a Harvard professor will take the stage at the City Opera House at the National Writers Series this year.

The series kicks off Feb. 4 with Hollywood veteran Vince Gilligan. He will appear onstage with NWS founder Doug Stanton to discuss his writing for AMC’s hit series “Breaking Bad.” Entertainment Weekly, NPR, Hollywood Reporter and Paste magazine all named the show #1 on their lists of 2011 Best TV Shows, with Stephen King naming the program #1 on his list of 2011 Pop Culture Favorites, hailing it as “an American classic.”

Gilligan will also discuss his diverse career in Hollywood, including a longrunning stint as writer and executive producer of “The X-Files,” co-creator of “The Lone Gunmen,” and screenwriter of such popular films as “Hancock” and “Home Fries.”

The season continues March 12 with best-selling novelist Jodi Picoult. Picoult is the author of 18 novels, the last five of which all debuted at number one on the New York Times Best Sellers List.

She will be joined on stage by Paula McLain, a previous NWS guest and New York Times best-selling author of the critically acclaimed “The Paris Wife.” The two writers will discuss their individual lives and works, the world of writing and the stories behind Jodi’s popular novels National Public Radio’s Alan Cheuse and Australian journalist and author Geraldine Brooks will take the stage April 5. Cheuse appears regularly on “All Things Considered” has published four novels, three collections of short fiction and the memoir “Fall Out of Heaven.”

Brooks won the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for “March,” a riveting parallel novel to Louisa May Alcott’s “Little Women” told from the point of view of the March family’s absent father. She has written several international best-sellers.

Harvard professor Michael Sandel will appear May 2. His “Justice” class is one of the highest attended in Harvard history. The professor is also the star of his own PBS series, “Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do?” He has contributed to The New York Times and The Atlantic Monthly, and appeared on The

Colbert Report, PBS, BBC and NPR. His latest book, “What Money Can’t Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets,” asks one of the most pressing ethical questions of our time: Is there something wrong with a society in which everything is for sale?

The season continues May 14 with awardwinning columnist and best-selling author Anna Quindlen. She won the Pulitzer Prize for Commentary in 1992 for her column “Private and Public” as New York Times’ Op- Ed columnist. She has penned such popular books as “Object Lessons,” “Rise and Shine,” “Blessings” and “One True Thing,” which was adapted into an Oscar-nominated film starring Meryl Streep and Renée Zellweger.

Quindlen will appear on stage for a discussion about her life and work with Susan Casey, O Magazine’s editor-in-chief. Casey is the New York Times best-selling author of the critically acclaimed books “The Devil’s Teeth” and “The Wave.” She has been a featured guest on programs including The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, The Oprah Winfrey Show, Charlie Rose and Conan.

The season will conclude June 21 with Natalie Bakopoulos and Elizabeth Kostova. Bakopoulos’s debut novel, “The Green Shore,” is a family drama set during the 1960s Greek military dictatorship. An early draft of the work won the Avery and Julie Hopwood Award and the Platsis Prize for Work on the Greek Legacy. Bakopoulos is a professor at her alma mater, the University of Michigan, and a contributing editor to the prestigious Fiction Writers Review. She won the 2010 PEN/O. Henry Prize, and her work has appeared in Tin House, Ninth Letter and Granta Online.

Bakopoulos will appear on stage with her friend Kostova for a discussion of their lives and works. Kostova’s worldwide blockbuster, “The Historian,” tells the tale of three generations of historians on the track of the original Dracula. After a bidding war for the publishing rights, Kostova accepted a $2 million contract, and the book went on to become the fastestselling hardcover debut novel in American publishing history and the first debut novel to ever premiere at number one on the New York Times Best Seller List. “The Historian” sold over three million copies worldwide in 40 languages. SONY/Columbia Pictures is currently producing a film adaptation. Kostova’s second novel, “The Swan Thieves,” was another international bestseller.

All NWS events this season will feature live musical performances before the author appearances, during which time attendees can enjoy complimentary desserts and a cash bar, as well as purchase books and NWS merchandise. The evenings will also include an audience Q&A and a post-event book signing and reception with the authors.

Tickets for all NWS events go on sale Jan.

23 at the City Opera House box office, by phone at 231-941-8082 and online at www. cityoperahouse.org. Tickets for all events except An Evening with Jodi Picoult and An Evening with Anna Quindlen are $15 in advance or $20 at the door. Tickets to An Evening with Jodi Picoult and An Evening with Anna Quindlen are $20 in advance or $25 at the door.

Student tickets to all events are just $5, while educator tickets are $10. Net proceeds from NWS events support the National Writers Series and its scholarship fund, which benefits college-bound writing and arts students attending Grand Traverse regional high schools.

For more information on the Traverse City National Writers Series, visit nationalwritersseries.org.

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