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 · Music · 100 Years of Haas
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100 Years of Haas

One of Michigan’s great men of classical music is getting celebrated in style.

Ross Boissoneau - April 28th, 2014  

Karl Haas, the longtime host of the syndicated radio program “Adventures in Good Music” and former president of Interlochen Center for the Arts, died in 2005 at the age of 91.

For his 100th birthday,  his children are hosting a tribute concert at the City Opera House to benefit the nonprofit Building Bridges with Music.

The program will begin with a 30-minute documentary on Karl Haas’s life, produced by Jeff Haas and his sister Alyce Haas. It tells the story of his musical career, how he came to America just ahead of the Nazi pogrom of the Jews, and how he came to be a fixture in so many people’s lives through his radio program.

“Adventures in Good Music” ran for 44 years; at its peak it aired on more than 650 radio stations. It boasted an average of 3.6 million listeners daily.

Karl Haas is the only classical music host to be inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame, and is one of only two radio personalities to receive two Peabody Awards (the other being the legendary Edward R. Murrow).

Following the documentary, Jeff Haas will take the stage, along with his Building Bridges quintet: Chris Lawrence (trumpet), Laurie Sears (sax and flute), Sean Dobbins (drums), and Marion Hayden (bass). They will be joined by special guests Marcus Belgrave on trumpet and his wife, vocalist Joan Belgrave.

Belgrave recorded and toured with numerous performers, appearing on several Motown records. He was a longtime sideman with Ray Charles, and has performed with Ella Fitzgerald, Charles Mingus, Eric Dolphy, McCoy Tyner, and on numerous occasions, Jeff Haas.

The set includes a number of Jeff Haas originals, as well as some classic jazz standards. Haas also promises some original material by Belgrave and possibly some surprises as well.

A portion of the proceeds from this event will benefit Building Bridges with Music and its mission of using the universal language of music to promote open mindedness, understanding and acceptance of people from different cultures, races and backgrounds.

The show starts at 7pm with the documentary. Tickets for the event begin at $18. For more information and to order tickets, visit cityoperahouse.org.

Karl Haas’s Piano Lost … Then Found

For his late father’s 100th birthday concert tribute, pianist and composer Jeff Haas will be playing the same piano Karl Haas played when he hosted “Adventures in Good Music” at the WJR studios in Detroit.

After Karl Haas left the WJR studios to continue the program at WCLV in Cleveland, the piano he had played on the show fell into disuse and eventually disrepair.

Jim Evola, a friend of Jeff ’s who owns a piano and restoration business based in the Detroit area (with a store in Traverse City), found out about the piano. After convincing WJR to donate it to him, he and his staff completely refurbished it.

Such a restoration typically costs several thousand dollars, but that didn’t even enter into consideration for Evola, he said.

“Sometimes things just line up and are the right thing to do,” he said.

The restoration was completed in time for Jeff to play it at the Detroit Institute of Arts in December, in conjunction with both Karl Haas’s 100th birthday and the 60th anniversary of the Chamber Music Society, which his father and his mother Trudie founded.

Evola then donated the piano to Building Bridges with Music, the non-profit Jeff Haas founded to promote peace and understanding in schools. He had it delivered to the headquarters of Building Bridges at the Circuit on 14th St., where Haas played it at a concert in February.

Jeff Haas said he was astounded when Evola first told him of the piano’s provenance.

“I had no idea,” he said. “I was totally surprised.”

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