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...

Home · Articles · News · Features · Thinking big with TED
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Thinking big with TED

Ross Boissoneau - May 16th, 2011
Thinking big with TED: Conference aims to stretch boundaries of inspiration
By Ross Boissoneau
Ted is coming to Traverse City.
Make that TEDx. A daylong conference at Milliken Auditorium on Tuesday,
May 17, TEDx will feature speakers from across the spectrum making brief
presentations designed to inspire attendees.
That has been the goal of the entire TED initiative since it began in
1984. Originally focused on bridging Technology, Entertainment, and Design
– hence the name – its scope has become ever broader. Along with annual
conferences held in Long Beach and Palm Springs each spring, and the
TEDGlobal conference in Edinburgh, UK each summer, various TEDx one-day
events have sprung up across the globe.
Now it’s Traverse City’s turn.
Paul Sutherland, principal of Financial Investment Management Group, and
Northwestern Michigan College President Tim Nelson had attended the TED
conferences, and decided to join forces to bring the one-day event to
Traverse City. Along with Karen Ruedinger of NMC and Kelly Kuhns and Sara
Harding of FIM Group, they set out to create an event to engage,
challenge, and inspire attendees.

“We wanted to bring ideas here,” said Sutherland. “We knew some really
great people, speakers who were always looking for a reason to come here.
They all thought it would be cool to do a TED here.”
They must have thought it would be cool indeed, since one of the
requirements is that the speakers cannot be paid. That hasn’t stopped
people like Al Gore, Steve Jobs, Jane Goodall, Bill and Melinda Gates,
J.J. Abrams, Rick Warren, Thomas Dolby, and a host of other equally and
lesser-known figures from becoming part of the TED conferences.
Locally, the lineup is just as eclectic: journalist/activist J. Carl
Ganter on water, writer Jerry Dennis on creativity, Neeli Bendapudi on
brand choices and loyalty, David Kenneth on the science and art of 3D
technology. In all, 16 speakers will take the stage.
“It’s amazing to read all their bios,” said Kuhns, who worked with the
speakers to bring them to Traverse City. “It’s humbling to realize the
energy, creativity, motivation they have. People (in the audience) won’t
be bored.”
As one example, she points to photojournalist Paola Gianturco. For the
past 13 years, she has documented women’s lives in 40 countries. Her most
recent book, “Women Who Light the Dark,” tells the story of local women
around the world who are helping one another tackle the problems that
darken their lives, including violence, poverty, illiteracy and disease.
Gianturco is giving 100% of her author royalties for this book to The
Global Fund for Women.

Sutherland hopes and believes that the stories they tell will galvanize
the audience. “When you’re around creative people, you can say, ‘I can do
this.’ It’s got to inspire you,” he said. “People are very evangelical,
and want to share their passions.”
The event is sold out, which both pleases and dismays those in charge.
They would like to be able to have more people attend, but are also afraid
that it might lose its intimacy if it was held in a larger venue.
“Tickets sold out in two weeks,” said Kuhns. “We have people on a waiting
Some might not readily see the appeal of sitting in an auditorium all day
listening to a bunch of people talk. But not only are the presenters
interesting, Sutherland said one of the best parts of the conference comes
between the speakers, when audience members interact with one another.
“How can you be thinking big when you’re in Traverse City?” he said. “It’s
hard for people to share their dreams and big ideas. At TED you get
“You’re going there because you’re excited,” Kuhns said. “It’s brain food.”
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