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 8-18-2014
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Letters 8-18-2014

- August 18th, 2014  

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The Climate Clarified

Climate change isn’t an easy subject. A class I’m taking compared it to medicine in a way that was helpful for me:

Climate scientists are like planetary physicians. Our understanding of medicine is incomplete, but what we know is useful. You wouldn’t expect your doctors to predict the date of your heart attack, but you would trust them to let you know when you are headed for trouble. A bypass operation is major surgery, so you’d feel uneasy about making a decision with incomplete data. Surgery involves costs and risks. Doing nothing can have even greater costs and risks later.

Global warming is a symptom. A fever of a few degrees can indicate a serious illness. A change of 9 degrees is the difference between an ice age and a period without large ice sheets. We’re heading towards something like that as a planet, even though last winter demonstrated that there can be a difference between local weather and larger climate trends over time!

Quitting fossil fuels is like quitting smoking. It’s not easy to do. You decide to stop because you want to maintain or regain your health – and because you care about the health of others.

That Al Gore brought the situation to our attention can make it seem like a partisan issue. It’s also understandable that many of us aren’t excited about changes that could be needed to protect the long-term health of the planet.

Greenhouse gas emission rates are accelerating and show no sign of moderating. The carbon emissions each one of us causes today will change the climate for every living thing on earth for generations. The choices we make or fail to make in the next ten years will affect all aspects of life in the future.

Rev Debra Hansen, Levering

Beware Non-Locally Grown

The article “Farm Fresh?” couldn’t be any more true than exactly stated.

As an avid shopper at the local farm markets I want to know “exactly” what I am buying, from GMO free to organic or not organic, sprayed or not sprayed and with what.

The thing is, some of the local farmers or “pretend” farmers and those working for the farmers aren’t always honest with those spending their hard-earned cash trying to do a good deed or put some food on the table for their small children. Instead they are feeding the greedy pockets of the pretender.

It’s no wonder why your true farmers are so irritated with those who buy wholesale only to resell and claim it’s theirs. If you have a huge database full of clients then the local markets aren’t for you. I love Brian and Karla Blacks’ idea of being certified as a local grower, if we can make sure to keep the pretend farmers from planting blueberries and asparagus and saying they actually grow locally. We all know the volume and the quality won’t add up.

However, the best thing we consumers can do to protect ourselves and our hard-earned money is to be knowledgeable and ask around what’s in season. There certainly isn’t that big of a difference in weather from Frankfort to Kingsley.

Chanda Allen, Fife lake

Media Bias Must End

I wish to thank Joel Weberman for his letter “Seeking Balanced Israel Coverage.” The pro-Palestinian bias includes TV news coverage. When will NBC interview the parents of the 64 Israeli soldiers killed, or the parents of the three teenage boys taken and killed by Hamas?

Dianne Carlton, Traverse City

Proud of My President

The world is a mess. According to many conservative voices, it would not be in such a mess if Obama was not the president. I am finally understanding that the problem with our president is that he is too thoughtful, too rational, too realistic, too inclined to see things differently and change his mind, too compassionate to be the leader of a free world. He doesn’t react with the belief that our might will make things right. There is too much consideration for looking at things “in the long run”, e.g. what do we do after we have bullied our enemies with bombs? He seeks a time when enemies finally figure out that they need to work together for the welfare of all. “No victors, no vanquished, we must work together,” I think was his comment. Perhaps that doesn’t make him a good president for many people. Probably the same people who believe the wars in Vietnam and in Iraq proved our leadership to the world. I am just grateful that he is my president in this chaotic history we are going through!

Bob McQuilkin, Frankfort

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