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..

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Saturday, August 6, 2016

Westwind Promise: “Build Momentum”

Sponsored “We provide a one-stop service for our clients,” said Peter Taghon-Oleszczuk, Greg’s son and vice president of operations for the company. “We work closely with architects and engineers, so there’s a high level of value we bring as a single source. We manage it all.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

Hawaiian Musician Brings Unique Sound to Interlochen

Music Kristi Kates When you hear the words “musical virtuoso,” the vision of a musician jamming on a ukulele probably doesn’t come to mind. But a skilled musician from Honolulu, Hawaii, is changing that perception with his unique performance and composition style on the instrument.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

The Parking Windfall

Other Opinions Thomas Kachadurian I don’t shop in downtown Traverse City anymore. It’s not a personal conviction or political statement. It happened little by little. When I run errands, the last place I think to go is downtown, and there is only one reason: parking. Downtown parking makes shopping too time consuming and expensive.
Saturday, July 30, 2016


A Local Pastor and a Local Atheist Debate Porn – Public Health Crisis or Harmless Activity?

Other Opinions Rev. Dr. William C. Myers, Gary Singer

Rev. Myers: No harm, no foul! I understand the saying. I played ball. At 6’4” and 240 lbs., a finesse player I’m not. Incidental contact should be ignored. Let them play! But I question this as a philosophy for life when it comes to sexual trafficking...

Singer: When Bill and I agreed to take up this topic, I imagined I would be writing about how innocuous pornography is and that -- like other personal activities -- there should be no restrictions on its use for adults. I have always felt that porn can be detrimental to children’s emotional development and that parents must control its access (which is simple to enact)...

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Dates 07-30-2016

Dates Jamie Kauffold Ann Arbor’s The Moxie Strings put their fresh spin on Celtic & Americana music as part of the Manitou Music Festival at Studio Stage, Lake Street Studios, Glen Arbor on Wednesday, August 3 from 8-10pm. Tickets: $13 GAAA members, $15 non-members. glenarborart.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

Etta’s Diner

Dining Kristi Kates These were the steps that led Steve Erber to his latest venture: the expansion of the aforementioned Etta’s Food Truck to the brick-and-mortar Etta’s Diner in Harbor Springs, where he’s serving up eclectic recipes inspired by his grandmother Henrietta Thompson, stuffed full of fresh, locallysourced ingredients.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

Short's Brewery Rolls in the Dough

Dining Kristi Kates Pizza is everywhere in northern Michigan and across America. So it’s a challenge for any restaurant, pub, or pizza place to make their pie standout. Popular local microbrew destination Short’s Brewing Company found a way, and all it took was looking in their own proverbial backyard.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

Letters 08-01-2016


Voter Suppression And Choice In 2013, five Supreme Court justices, each appointed by Republican presidents, knocked the teeth out of the Voting Rights Act. Immediately a majority of Republican-dominated states began passing laws aimed at suppressing the votes of their majority Democrat demographics: minorities, students and the elderly. These laws – requiring voter IDs, cutting early voting, eliminating same-day registration, closing selected polling places, banning straight-ticket voting, etc. — never flat-out deny a person’s right to vote; they just make actual registering and voting more difficult, and therefore make it more likely that individuals in certain groups will not vote. Think of voter suppression as a kind of reverse marketing strategy, one aimed at getting people not to do something...

Free Parking Patrick Sullivan’s good story on parking overlooked one source of “free parking” that has become an increasing problem in Traverse City: spill-over into adjacent neighborhoods. Instead of discouraging people from bringing cars downtown, we’re allowing them to park on both sides of narrow residential streets all day long...

Real American Duality Isiah Smith didn’t really put his deep thinking hat on before writing the “American Duality” commentary. First there’s geography. His daughter feels safer in Sweden than in the United States, at least partially because of the violence in Dallas, Baton Rouge and Minnesota. Really? Safer than in northern Michigan, which is further away from Dallas and Baton Rouge than Stockholm is from Ansbach, Paris or Brussels and no closer to Minnesota than Sweden is to Germany? Did Smith miss recent supremely violent events in those places? Alrighty then...

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Eat Like a Chef

Features Kristi Kates With all of that culinary knowledge at their disposal, do you ever wonder what our local chefs prefer to prepare … and eat … at home? We tapped some of the region’s top chefs to find out the go-to meals they make when they’re off the clock and have a hankering for something delicious.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

Two Foodies Aim at a Fruit Juice Revolution

Features Kristi Kates The amount of sugar in most fruit juices today rivals that of manufactured sodas — a problem that turns off many health-minded consumers, and one that friends and foodies Chad Anderson and Luc Hobson decided to tackle with their new product, Edit Fruit Juice, made right in Traverse City.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

An Extra Dime For Every Lunch

Features Patrick Sullivan One dime per meal might sound like peanuts, but it can have a drastic impact on the quality of food and on the local farm economy, said Diane Conners, a Groundwork senior policy specialist. Consider that the amount spent on food for each school lunch is just $1.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

Nothing Tastes Better Than Home Cookin’ (that someone else makes)

Features Ross Boissoneau What’s for dinner? That familiar lament can bring the response “Let’s order pizza,” “Whatever you’re fixing,” or everyone’s favorite: “Leftovers.” With busy lives focusing on work, school, vacation, visitors and the like, folks today seem to have less time than ever to fix a healthy, appealing meal.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

Michigan’s Ironmen

Features Kristi Kates Fundraising and planning takes place year-round for the festival, which takes many volunteers and hundreds of manhours to make happen. It’s also a reunion of sorts, as men who worked on the bridge, as well as many other ironworkers from across the United States and Canada, meet up for this annual event.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

A Native American Showcase

Features Kristi Kates The Annual Odawa Homecoming Pow Wow, an extensive all-day event that runs annually every summer in Harbor Springs, doesn’t only bring together the Odawa people to honor their own.
Saturday, July 30, 2016

Going Nuts in Williamsburg!

Features Kristi Kates HIDDEN HEALTH “The company was actually started by Katie,” Tim Kearney explained [Katie Kearney is out on maternity leave.] “She was experimenting in the kitchen, making nut butters on her own. She wanted to make a healthier version of peanut and almond butter, since at the time there were only a few organic versions.