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 · Letters · Letters 03-12-2012
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Letters 03-12-2012

- March 12th, 2012  

Email your letter to: info@northernexpress.com

Please keep your letter under 300 words (one page).

Only one letter per reader in a two month period will be accepted. may be edited for length or to correct factual errors. Letters must be signed to be considered for print and a phone number is required for verification. Faxed letters are not accepted.

Rush is wrong

Radio commentator Rush Limbaugh apologized on March 3 for labeling Georgetown University law student Sandra Fluke a “slut and a prostitute” for her congressional testimony in support of birth control insurance coverage. He claimed his insulting diatribe occurred only as a result of a poor “choice of words,” and a failed “attempt to be humorous.”

I find it difficult to imagine how a skilled wordsmith like Limbaugh could fall victim to poor word choice. It would have been helpful to know, in retrospect, just what his choice of words in this somewhat limited category could have been. Perhaps, instead of “slut and prostitute,” he might have selected trollop and whore.

In truth, four-times-married Rush Limbaugh views all of the 98% of American women who elect to use some form of birth control as his moral inferiors. The women of American should take note of the views expressed by this spokesman for the Republican right wing and then express their own views by voting for women’s health on November 6th.

Bob Ross • Pellston

Replace incumbents

Energy Secretary Steven Chu’s goal is to assure gas prices go as high as Europe’s to force us into small cars and alternative fuel sources because that’s what the administration wants.

Hence, no Keystone Pipeline. Never mind what we want or need ...

Attorney General Eric Holder has refused to provide Congress all the documents needed to investigate Fast & Furious-gate. Never mind what we want ....

Joe Lieberman and Charles Dent propose the Enemy Expatriation Act, giving authorities the right to strip any citizen of citizenship and passport. Never mind what we want ...

$370,000 went to bonuses to employees to break up Solyndra. Taxpayers shelled out $500 Million plus another 50 Million that we pay for them to defend themselves against us ... Never mind what we want ...

We have no more property rights. Permission must be granted by “them” via license, fee, inspection and fines issued if “they” deem not ok. The only right we have is to pay the taxes. Never mind what we want...

God gave man dominion over the earth, not over man! Any power not specifically granted by the Constitution is illegal. Most officials have breached this trust, thereby committed treason.

We must take responsibility and action by participating in the Get Out of Our House (goooh.com) process to rid ourselves of incumbents & corruption.

These citizen candidates have completed and signed a questionnaire as to how they will vote or resign in 3 days.

What is there to lose if we don’t?


Katheryn Burson • Houston TX

Academic performance

One teacher in Troy recently went before the board of education to explain the 20 percent increase in scores across all of her students for the first half of the year. Her innovative ideas involve three areas: classroom structure, embedded writing in her curriculum and student nutrition.

As part of a three-year longitudinal study it turns out that she has been able to simulate same gender effect in a mixed student class room by original vertical and horizontal placement of students in the classroom.

Decibel readings clearly show that the sound is much less in her “in the Zone,” arrangement, allowing students to hear better and perform better on tests.

Recently neurologists are linking handwriting with increasing memory retention. This teacher has handwriting embedded in her program at many levels with specialized writing templates for homework, lab reports, MEAP review and every day in class note taking.

Because we are so culturally diverse in Troy, we can look to our friends in the Indian communities for help with good things to eat for our minds.

Turmeric, which is found in many curries and is commonly put into plain yogurts for consumption as part of an Indian diet, may explain the dramatic results on test scores in one teacher’s student population. Both turmeric and plain yogurt have been linked to better cognitive functioning.

When random samples of high test performers and low test performers were asked if either plain yogurt or turmeric (curry) was a regular part of their diet, the high test performers had a much higher percentage of these foods in their diet than did the low test performers.

In addition, those of us who love dark chocolate will be pleased to hear that it also has a positive impact on brain function.

Gail Hall • Troy

Taxes on pensioners

As we all know, our Republican Governor and Messers Walker, Schmidt and Franz (you know, the Republicans: “No New Taxes”) passed into law a NEW TAX on pensioners set to begin with our first checks come 2012.

Adding insult to injury, there appears to be no accounting for deductions or exemptions. The total being taken from our pockets and therefore from this community is 4.5% of the entire check.

That amounts to money that is no longer going to circulate in and around Leelanau and Grand Traverse County. It constitutes movies not seen, dinners out not taken, groceries not bought, charities doing without and so on.

For those of you who really believe that the Republicans are the party of the people, I have a bridge between Mackinaw City and Saint Ignace that I’d like to show you. Talk about hypocritical.

This, by the way, is what “some folks” used to call taxation without representation. None of these guys are doing the things they represented themselves as doing. A tax is a tax is a tax.

And if you are going to impose another new one Mr. Nerd, at least get the math right.

Bill Brown • TC

Fund schools equitably

I attended the Northwest Michigan Economic Summit held at the Hagerty Center on Friday, March 2, 2012.

During the Q and A with Governor Snyder, Mr. Luciani, President of the Traverse City Chamber of Commerce, questioned him about inequitable school funding. Gov. Snyder shared he would put it on his list and it might be considered in a couple of years.

In the meantime, any cut to the foundation grant for TCAPS results in a greater percentage cut than higher funded districts. Any increase in the grant means a smaller percentage increase for our district.

The bottom line is TCAPS takes larger cuts and smaller increases at the whim of the governor and legislature. The students of Traverse City simply can’t wait a couple of years.

Take relentless positive action by contacting Gov. Snyder and our local legislators. Tell them you believe our children are not worth less than other children around the state. Tell them our children deserve equal opportunity with students in higher funded districts.

Tell them we can’t wait a couple of years to end this discrimination.

Mary McGee-Cullen • TC

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