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 · Features · That‘s how they...
. . . .

That‘s how they roll:Smart Commute Week

Robert Downes - June 6th, 2011
That’s How They Roll…Biking to work for Smart Commute Week
By Robert Downes
Buffy Bimgarden is trading in her hose & high heels for cycle shorts and clip-in pedals on the commute to work this week, while Clyde Clipperhorn is ditching his 4x4 monster truck in order to mountain bike to his construction site.
Okay, Buffy and Clyde don’t actually exist, but they represent the appeal of Smart Commute Week, which urges commuters of every stripe to bicycle, walk, carpool, or take public transportation to work this week, June 6-12.
“Smart Commute Week has been growing every year since it got started 17 years ago and it’s wonderful,” says Lee Maynard, the trail planning and programming director of TART Trails (Traverse Area Recreation Trail).  “Plus, last year, Petoskey and Harbor Springs started their own Smart Commute Week with the Top of Michigan Trails Council, so it’s become a regional event.” 
Smart Commute Week is a nationwide event, but Maynard notes that Northern Michigan celebrates it later in the season for comfort’s sake.  “Other communities celebrate it in May, but because it’s chilly up here, we hold it in June,” she says.

In addition to encouraging individuals to bike to work or take alternative transportation, the week offers a Smart Commute Challenge for teams from various workplaces in TC as well as Petoskey/Harbor Springs.
Pam Darling, who serves as TART’s marketing and outreach director, says that when the Challenge got started in 2001, there were just 13 teams registered.  Last year, that number grew to 64 teams, and this year could produce more than 80.
So what’s so “smart” about biking to work?
“For every mile commuted ‘smartly,’ one pound of carbon dioxide is prevented from entering the atmosphere,” Darling says.  Plus, one might note that you’re likely to look a lot better in your swimsuit this summer if you start pedaling more often…
Although the evidence is anecdotal, there seems to be a trend in more people biking to work, Maynard says.
“We as an organization have a consensus that more people are biking to work these days, especially with the rise in gasoline prices.  Our office is located off an alley in town and in the winter, even with snow flying, we see more people riding past our window than ever before.  Maybe it’s because of the gas prices, or just because they’re enjoying a lifestyle change.”
So, how does Maynard, 26, roll?
“I’ve been bicycling my whole life, but I’m a cruiser biker, not a Spandex cyclist,” says the transplant from Athens, Georgia.

As in the past, there will be daily breakfasts for cyclists from 7-9 a.m. at venues around Traverse City.  In Emmet County, breakfast sponsors include The Grain Train and Roast & Toast.  The partial schedule:

Monday, June 6:  
• Pangea’s Pizza (TC)
• Higher Grounds Coffee (TC)

Tuesday, June 7: 
• Central Grade School Smart Commute with the Mayor. Walking school buses & bike trains.
• Breakfast at Oryana Natural Foods 

Wednesday, June 8: 
• BATA offers free Cherriot bus rides (TC)
• Commuter Breakfasts 7-9am
• Breakfast at Old Town Coffee (TC)
• Breakfast at BATA Transit Center (TC)

Thursday, June 9:  
• Breakfast at Munson Medical Center (TC)
• Breakfast at Munson Community Health Care Center

Friday, June 10: 
• Take a Bike Train to Breakfast in TC: 3 trains to choose from:
• 1. Tom’s 14th Street 2. Tom’s West Bay 3. TART Trail head at Cherry Bend Road
• Breakfast at The River peddle and paddle rentals at Clinch Park
• Bike Swap drop off at The Old Town Parking Garage 5pm-8pm

Saturday, June 11: Bicycle Block Party & Bicycle Swap
• Breakfast sponsored by Fixed Gear and Another Cuppa Joe at building 50, 8-10am
• Bicycle Swap at Old Town Parking Garage 10am-6pm
• Bicycle Block Party 400 S. Union St. noon-6pm
• Porterhouse Productions Presents the Dandy Horse Festival Music & Beer Tent featuring The Ragbirds, 6pm. 

Sunday, June 12: 
Bicycle Swap Sale 9am-noon (TC)
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5