Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

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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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