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, July 16, 2016

Girl Power

Features Kristi Kates It’s interesting that in this day and age, there’s even a need to pen an article specifically about women working in the film industry. But it’s also a reality that the majority of directors in Hollywood are still, in fact, men.
Saturday, July 16, 2016

Statewide Screenings

Features Kristi Kates The Ann Arbor Film Festival: March 21–26, 2017 Art and avant-garde blend in one of the state’s most eclectic cities More information: aafilmfest.org Ann Arbor’s artistic heritage runs deep, with this fest having already screened early works by such big names as James Benning, Andy Warhol, Gus Van Sant, and Agnes Varda.
Saturday, July 9, 2016

Destination: Aten Place

Features Kristi Kates When asked about this year’s Aten Place concert lineup, you can almost see Bill Aten’s grin beaming through the phone. “I honestly think this is one of our very best seasons,” Aten said. “It’s just got such a good variety of performers of all different genre — about half new acts, and the other half, some of our favorites returning.
Saturday, July 9, 2016

Meet Me By The Main Stage!

Features Kristi Kates There’s a whole host of things to do at Gaylord’s Alpenfest, the annual summer celebration of the city’s Alpine heritage. The 52nd Alpenfest will run July 12–16 this year, with every day stuffed full of food, carnival rides and games.
Saturday, July 9, 2016

History Underwater

Features Kristi Kates There is an incredible amount of history beneath the Great Lakes’ depths, and scuba divers are some of the people who know the lore best. As they descend into the fresh waters that we are all so familiar with, ghosts of the past slowly come into view: hulking freighters and broken masts.
Saturday, July 9, 2016

The North’s New Powerhouse

Features Patrick Sullivan Northern Michigan’s newest power plant, a massive twin-tower complex tucked into the woods between Elmira and Gaylord, goes online this month. It will be northern Michigan’s largest power plant, generating over 400 megawatts. The hope of officials at Wolverine Power Cooperative: that it will satiate their customers’ energy appetite for years to come.
Saturday, July 9, 2016

Gaylord’s Alpine Building Motif

Features Ross Boissoneau “It got started with some of the business community in the early ’60s,” said Gaylord City Manager Joe Duff. Thanks to the opening of I-75, which bypassed Gaylord rather than ran right through it, as old US-27 had, travelers were driving right past the town, and business was suffering, he said.
Saturday, July 9, 2016

Trusting His Instincts

Features Kristi Kates “Music was really my only friend as a kid,” Jones explained. “So here I was, living in this small town and listening to the music everyone else was listening to at the time. Then I started reading Thrasher (a skateboarding/music magazine) in sixth grade and found out about bands like Sonic Youth and The Dead Milkmen.
Saturday, July 2, 2016

The Worthy Cherry

Features Kristi Kates Detroit’s cars, the cherry is likely Michigan’s bestknown export. Michigan is the primary tart cherry-producing state, accounting for nearly 74 percent of the nation’s tart cherry production.
Saturday, July 2, 2016

Is the Yacht Club Life for You?

Features Ross Boissoneau The approximation is simply because not everyone agrees what the term “yacht club” even means. Harbor West Yacht Club, for example, isn’t a club at all. It’s simply the name give to a group of owners of slips at Harbor West in Traverse City. “It’s a private marina,” said harbormaster John Melichar.
Saturday, July 2, 2016

Heritage Parade Return Highlights Cherry Festival

Features Ross Boissoneau Harold Arlen and Ted Koehler’s 1931 hit, “I Love a Parade,” wasn’t written with the thousands of National Cherry Festival parade-goers in mind, but the song’s sentiment is as timeless today as the trio of traditional marches through Traverse City’s downtown:.
Saturday, July 2, 2016

Two Decades of a Fruitful Partnership

Features Kristi Kates “It’s hard to believe that much time has passed already,” said Ed O’Keefe, president of Chateau Grand Traverse (CGT). “It started when we went to Cherry Fest 20 years ago and talked to them about getting local wines into the festival. Back in 1996, most wineries up here weren’t even in business yet; they mostly started around 1998 and later.
Saturday, July 2, 2016

Oh Fudge!

Features By most accounts, the first batch of fudge was concocted in Baltimore in the 1880s. It wasn’t long after that when father and son Henry and Jerome “Rome” Murdick were commissioned to create canvas awnings for the new Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island.
Saturday, July 2, 2016

“My Home Away From Home, My Sanctuary”

Kingsley’s The Rock Gives Teenagers a Safe Place to Hang Out

Features Patrick Sullivan Isabel and Justin plan to attend Northwestern Michigan College this fall. Isabel hopes one day to open a therapeutic daycare to help troubled kids; Justin wants to be an engineer. Both teenagers believe they might be on a much different track had they not had the refuge of The Rock while growing up in Kingsley.
Saturday, July 2, 2016

What's Happening

Features Kristi Kates Cherry Festival is so big, one parade simply isn’t enough. Enjoy three separate parades, each one stuffed with floats, marching bands, flags, and music, and each with their own unique parade personality: the return of the local favorite Heritage...