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, May 21, 2016

Grab A Buffalo Burger Under The Pines...

Features Kristi Kates This annual outdoor fundraiser picnic was started 60 years ago by the late Gerald Oleson and his wife Frances, founders of Oleson’s Food Stores. “NMC was only a few years old when it moved to its Front Street campus,” said Diana Fairbanks, executive director of public relations, marketing and communications for NMC.
Saturday, May 21, 2016

Rainbow Inn

Features Kristi Kates William T. West was a black man from Columbus, Ohio, who worked as a chef and porter for the Pennsylvania Railroad back when its Northern Arrow train kept a regular route north to Mackinaw City, bringing up vacationers from Chicago, Detroit, and St. Louis, and making a stop in Petoskey along the way.
Saturday, May 21, 2016

From Airwaves to Insects

Features Kristi Kates Northern Michigan residents might recognize Roach from her former career in broadcasting. She was an on-air personality at WKLT-FM for many years, starting at the radio station on her 16th birthday and rising through the industry to work as a production director.
Saturday, May 21, 2016

Meet the Hardworking Caretakers of a Northern Michigan Summer

Features Kristi Kates Seven months a year, Northern Michigan’s multitude of seasonal cottages and summer houses sit vacant. Come spring, a small army of caretakers mobilize to ready these places for their owners’ return.
Saturday, May 21, 2016

Memorial Day Weekend Kicks off Summer Fun

Features Kristi Kates

Running all weekend (May 28–30) at Fort Michilimackinac in Mackinaw City is the historical recreation of events that took place in 1753 between the Native American tribes, French, and British, and followed by an evening of fireworks. For more information: mackinawcity.com

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Kevin Nealon’s Not Overwhelmed

Art Kristi Kates only 8:30am in Los Angeles, but if Kevin Nealon isn’t a morning person, you’d never know it by the cheerful voice on the other end of the phone. Comedian/actor Nealon, whose specialties include observational comedy and satire, is embarking on a U.S. stand-up tour in a few days.
Saturday, May 14, 2016

Operation Petunia

Features Kristi Kates Can you name one of the most popular blooming annuals? We’ve got the answer: petunias! While these flowers originally hail from South America, they vacation quite well Up North, where they’re used in window boxes, hanging planters and — perhaps most...
Saturday, May 14, 2016

It’s a Small World

Features Kristi Kates From Pinterest and Martha Stewart to local garden centers and Vogue, terrariums — decorative containers that hold a condensed version of a live garden — are one of the hot trends in indoor-outdoor decor, even though they got their start back in the mid-1800s.
Saturday, May 14, 2016

Great Gardens

Four Must-See Garden Destinations

Features Kristi Kates While she had no gardening experience (“I had never planted as much as a blade of grass before,” Blair chuckled), she poured over dozens of books and applied her new knowledge to what has become one of the most striking and frequently visited private gardens in northern Michigan.
Saturday, May 14, 2016

Find Joy Through Decluttering

Features Kristi Kates The best-selling author and Time Magazine “influential person” is the now-famous japanese organizing consultant whose little turquoise book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing, made decluttering famous and started a movement.
Saturday, May 14, 2016

Listen to the Local Experts!

Features Kristi Kates Spring is here, which means it’s time to focus on your personal great outdoors! Whether you’re looking for top tips on trees, popular picks on posies or favorite finds in the flower department, these local experts have all the dirt on how to keep your garden and grounds looking great.
Saturday, May 7, 2016

A Fine Fungi Life

Features Kristi Kates “Ken literally went just one day to — I think it was the Petoskey or Boyne City market — with a basket of chanterelles,” Ashleigh said. “He was sold out by 11am and had $300 in his pocket! And that was the light bulb; we thought we could really do something with this.
Saturday, May 7, 2016

Top Mushroom-Hunting Tips From Tony Williams, Local Morel Expert

Features Kristi Kates 1. “Listen to what people are saying and gather info on where other people are picking. If you have all kinds of time to go out into the woods and scout, that’s great, but otherwise I wait until I hear the morels are out; I wait until I hear that my friends and colleagues are finding them.
Saturday, May 7, 2016

Celebrating the Mighty Morel!

Boyne City Fest Returns for 56th Year

Features Kristi Kates May, mushroom hunters from around the state and around the country converge at Boyne City for the annual National Morel Mushroom Festival, an ode to everything mushroom, from savory foods made of this earthy treat to tales of secret mushroom spots, music, dancing and, above all, the thrill of the mushroom hunt.
Saturday, May 7, 2016

Your Guide To The Food Trucks

Features Kristi Kates THE LANDING CRAFT A spinoff of Charlevoix’s popular restaurant, The Landing, The Landing Craft offers up a mixed menu from their custom-designed “mobile kitchen” that features summer favorites, plus selections from the restaurant’s main menu. Two to try: The Beach Fries with Old Bay seasoning and fry sauce; chicken salad sliders.