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 4-30-2012
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Letters 4-30-2012

- April 30th, 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.

Government waste

The CAGW ( Citizens Against Government Waste) released the 2012 Pig Book recently, and boy oh boy, what a story.

It reminds me of the famous Walt Kelly cartoon character from the Okeefenokee swamp – Pogo – who said, “We have met the enemy, and it is us.”

Why? Because we have elected the Senators and Congressmen who fail, especially at this turning point in our history, to be bipartisan. They promise to go to Wshington to work for their constituents and end up protecting their turf and giving in to special interest – the infamous lobbyist.

Check out the CAGW website to learn about the appropriations marked,”Ear Marked Free.” Millions of dollars are spent, many with duplications. The book sites 152 projects involved.

Where does this situation put us with only one vote? Perhaps we can all turn up the volume to both sides of the aisle in Congress to listen up – work together now on the budget. The welfare of the whole nation is depending on you.

It’s not just the size of government, but also how it treats the people.

Thomas E. Hagan • Empire

Nugent out of bounds

Ted Nugent, guitarist and longtime gunrights activist, at last weekend’s National Rifle Association convention stated that “If Barack Obama becomes the president in November again, I will either be dead or in jail by this time next year.”

He then later stated in his own defense that “by no stretch of the imagination did I threaten anyone’s life or hint at violence or mayhem.”

I am left wondering just exactly what actions short of murder or mayhem could lead to Mr. Nugent’s death or imprisonment. I would hope that the Secret Service would have asked that same question before releasing him.

Ted Nugent’s apparent advice to American citizens whose political favorite has lost an election would be to respond with the level of violence required to make them liable for death or imprisonment.

His desired form of democracy sounds more like anarchy to me, and even if Mr. Nugent lacks the courage to act out his anarchist prescription, his words alone may provoke violent actions by those even less rational than himself.

In any case, we can certainly agree that Ted’s world is not the kind of world we want to live in. As patriotic Americans, we must respect the office of the President, and the electoral process that elected him no matter which political party happens to win the election.

Bob Ross • Pellston

So many poles

This letter is really addressed to the general manager of Cherryland Electric Cooperative, who put a message on my email this morning. He was responding to the many concerns his members have made known following our March outages.... especially the dilemmas of overground vs. underground wiring.

Mr. General Manager: I understand your points attempting to justify above ground wiring. However, there is an important issue you overlooked and which would go a long way toward improving our acceptance of your above ground position! That is the proposition of pole sharing.

I live in lovely Leelanau County, which depends on its attractiveness to tourists. The perfect example of my issue with electricity providers is now glaringly evident on Otto Center Road, as well as a number of other locations throughout our beautiful county!

On Otto Center, the third set of poles is now being installed, clearing trees and cluttering the view down that farmland road. It is the second set of very tall poles to be recently installed there, and they strut down BOTH sides of what was once a lovely country road past farms, between tidy fields and beside picturesque orchards.

One might ask where are our township officials who say they weren’t consulted? Probably fussing about how one or two tall white wind turbines would look in a field somewhere.

Want another example? Count the number of poles on and near the corner where Center Road (M-633) intersects Herman Road (close to Suttons Bay schools). Then imagine a school bus accident at that corner! The issue is not only beauty and conservation. It should be a roadway safety concern as well!

Your email spoke of greater underground expense. Humbug! We’re continuing to pay the bill for duplication, “overlooking” more strings of poles daily, while company decision-makers continue to install with little concern for tomorrow, for efficiency, for environmental equity, or for esthetics.

Barbara Coye • Suttons Bay


Does anyone else see a (dysfunctional) family resemblance between 1) the Bush- Cheney doctrine of pre-emptive war; 2) the Florida Stand-Your-Ground law; and 3) the justification given by the Norwegian, Anders Breivik, for his murder of 77 children and adults?

Ron Tschudy • Central Lake

Give Gitmo back

In last week’s issue Mr. Tuttle called for ending our fruitless blockade of Cuba. This is laudable and sensible.

The blockade has been an abject failure. Fidel Castro has outlasted now nine presidents. More importantly, had our blockade been ended decades ago, communism in Cuba would have been long gone and Cuba would now be a major trading partner and American vacation destination.

It was disappointing, however, that an editorial calling for an end to the blockade didn’t have a word about “Gitmo.” You know, the prison nickname for our Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Gitmo, the place where we hold “detainees” indefinitely without real trials. Gitmo, the place where we torture people. Gitmo, the place where detainee suicide is described by us as an act of “asymmetrical warfare.”

Guantanamo Bay was part of the “booty” we got from our splendid big splash into modern imperialism: The Spanish-American War. Having decimated the indigenous population of North America, the northern European masters of the Land of the Free saw it as their manifest destiny to subjugate the remaining underdeveloped world.

We “Remember the Maine” in spirit to this day. We belligerently threaten “rogue” states such as Iran with “all options ...” if they don’t see eye-to-eye with us.

Few remember, or have ever even heard, the view expressed by Mark Twain after he witnessed our seizure of Spain’s former colonies: “I am an anti-imperialist. I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land.”

It’s not enough to end the blockade, a blockade as archaic and as ridiculous as the state of North Korea. It’s not enough to close Gitmo, the place where we have forsaken the rule of law.

It’s time to roll back our entire bankrupting military empire. The place to start is Cuba. Guantanamo should be returned to the Cubans as part of normalizing full relations with Cuba.

Matt Malpass • East Jordan

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