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 01-07-2013
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Letters 01-07-2013

- January 7th, 2013  

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.

What to cut?

Time to talk deficit. Clinton left a budget surplus of over $200 billion. George Bush left a trillion dollar deficit. Large chunks of Bush’s deficit consisted of the Bush tax cuts, two wars, and Medicare Part D, all put on credit cards. In addition the Bush recession added to the deficit.

The problem is not: food stamps, school lunches, Headstart, Big Bird, Pell Grants, W.I.C. etc. The poor, college students, the working class, elderly DID NOT cause the deficit.

Further Social Security has zero impact on the deficit. It has no business being on the table. As for Medicaid, it’s under-funded now. Medicare, raising eligibility age is a bad idea.

The cuts should start with the military and the monster complex of the national security system. The U.S. spends more on military than the top 16 countries combined. Nearly 67% of discretionary spending is military related. Between the military and national security industrial complexes we could cut deeply and be just as powerful and just as safe. In fact perhaps safer!

When George H. W. Bush dared to raise taxes the economy grew; when Clinton increased taxes the economy grew. When George W. Bush cut taxes the economy dived and job losses increased so much that by the end of 2008 we were losing 800,000 jobs per month! It’s been about 10 years since the Bush tax cuts went into effect; the “job makers” have not been making jobs.

To my elected reps: leave Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare alone. Do not cut safety net programs. Do cut Pentagon and national security budgets. Do create a jobs program in FDR style.

Karen Martin • Cheboygan

Blind lawmakers

Lou Ann McKimmy decries the 182 bills passed in Michigan’s fall 2012 session in her lame duck outrage letter. Her issue seems to be there was no discussion on the bills and there was no time to read and understand them within the given time period.

Mckimmy would have credence had she wrote a similar letter after ObamaCare passed in the dead of night with no discussion and no time to read it. Remember Nancy Pelosi’s remark ? “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.”

Dan Trey • Vanderbilt

Capital idea

Yes to the three C’s (re: Rick Coates’ article on making the region a Culinary, Cultural and Craft Farming capital).

I am from Kent County many years ago and I heard about the Art Prize from family and friends. It has made a good difference. I own a yarn shop in Suttons Bay and would love to do whatever I can on the craft end. We have lots of artistic folks in this area and we should be showcasing them.

Kathy Dawkins • Suttons Bay

The truth about Israel

WORDS! How easy it is for them to be accepted as inflammatory, baring the view of the writer’s heart. Recent letters used the term “anti-Semitic” to describe critics of Israel, as if that gave their words weight. Being Jewish, I saw “anti-Zionist.”

I am proud of my heritage: Grandparents who supported and joined the freedom riders in the south. Parents who taught me to read all the books about my heritage, not just the Holocaust Among their collection of books, Ulan Pappe’s “The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine” and “The Modern Middle East.” Non-Jewish writers were also amongst their book collection, President Carter’s “Peace Not Apartheid,” and “Gaza in Crisis: Reflections on Israel’s War Against the Palestinians,” by Noam Chomsky.

Their books gave me the reality of Israel and Israel lost.

My heritage will never change, nor my pride in it. Israel can be rescued but only when the truth is visible and accepted. Words can be verified, news stories can be read. A narrow perspective formed only in emotions will never bring peace to the Middle East or anywhere else in the world.

Sarah Bemheim • Honor

Missing the mark

I couldn’t let Stephen Tuttle’s “December 26” column slip by without comment. Tuttle states: “Christmas Day is the focal point of the giving season for most of us. And the endpoint.”

Excuse me, but what is this based on? As a self-employed small business person, my hourly wage is less than minimum wage. Yet that doesn’t stop me -- or others I know -- from tithing 10% of each paycheck to charity, 365 days a year.

Also, Tuttle states: “About 20 million are so far below (the poverty level) they lead a life of such grinding, unrelenting poverty we would not recognize it.”

Perhaps he meant to write “I would not recognize it,” for in the same issue, we learn that Tuttle’s household enjoys $96 haircuts and shopping at Macy’s. Please give us working poor -- you know, the ones that walk the talk -- a break when lecturing “most of us.”

TJ Tracey • TC

Those wondrous women

A few hundred years ago, Edmund Spenser wrote about women:

“Such wondrous forms ought rather worshipped be than dared be loved by men of mean degree.”

Had Spenser been writing in contemporary America he might have penned, “Such wondrous forms ought rather worshipped be than menaced by Republicans of mean degree."

Thankfully, women repudiated the medieval mindset of the Republican Party platform in our latest presidential election. Yes, the Republican bus has just driven past the last exit leading to relevancy for women. A slight variation of John Milton’s own words describing his personal plight is applicable to the plight of the G.O.P. ‘When without fortune in womens’ eyes, we all alone beweep our outcast state.”

Nick laRose • TC

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