Letters

Letters 12-14-2014

Come Together There is a time-honored war strategy known as “divide and conquer,” and never has it been more effective than now. The enemy is using it against us through television, internet and other social media. I opened a Facebook account a couple of years back to gain more entries in local contests. Since then I had fallen under its spell; I rushed into judgment on several social issues based on information found on those pages

Quiet The Phones! This weekend we attended two beautiful Christmas musical events and the enjoyment of both were significantly diminished by self-absorbed boors holding their stupid iPhones high overhead to capture extremely crucial and highly needed photos. We too own iPhones, but during a public concert we possess the decency and manners to leave them turned off and/or at home. Today’s performance, the annual Messiah Sing at Traverse City’s Central Methodist Church, was a new low: we watched as Mr. Self-Absorbed not only took several photos but then afterwards immediately posted them to his Facebook page. We were dumbfounded.

A Torturous Defense In defense of the C.I.A.’s use of torture in a mostly fruitless search for vital information, some suggest that the dire situation facing us after 9-11, justified the use of torture even at the expense of the potential loss of much of our nation’s moral authority.

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Sunday, December 14, 2014

Go Inside TC’s First Wet House

Features Patrick Sullivan A 2012 University of Washington study found that providing food and shelter to homeless alcoholics at a wet house in Seattle caused them to drink 40 percent less after two years. At Dann’s House, residents are expected to cut back from what they consumed on the street.
 
Monday, December 8, 2014

Without A Trace

Features Patrick Sullivan QUIET DESPERATION Richardson believes Lepsy could be Cooper, the infamous skyjacker who jumped from a commercial airliner on Nov. 24, 1971 into the dark Oregon night with $200,000 in ransom money. No trace of Cooper or his parachute has ever been found.
 
Monday, December 1, 2014

From the Heart of Ebola

Features Patrick Sullivan Surrounded by death in a Liberian Ebola unit, nurse Kelly Suter writes heartbreaking letters of hope home to Petoskey. The 29-year-old woman has spent her life training to provide relief in circumstances like this.
 
Sunday, November 16, 2014

The Diplomat Next Door

Retired and active foreign service workers love northern Michigan

Features Patrick Sullivan

The US ambassador to Oman might live just up the road on the Old Mission Peninsula. Other foreign service retirees have traded Moscow, Kabul or Karachi for Benzie, Grand Traverse or Leelanau.

There are even a handful of former or current CIA operatives in the region, though those folks are especially shy about details -- and interviews for stories like this.

Not only are the foreign service alumni fascinating in their own right, the burgeoning group is also delivering more international opportunities for Northwestern Michigan College students, as well as an impressive lineup of speakers at Traverse City’s International Affairs Forum.

 
Monday, November 10, 2014

VA on the Verge of Change

National Scandal Leads to Changes in Healthcare for Northern Michigan Veterans

Features Patrick Sullivan Outrage following reports of excessive healthcare delays at the VA hospital in Phoenix led Congress to pass the Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act of 2014 in August, a law that provides billions in funding for better veteran care and also demands reform at the VA.
 
Sunday, November 2, 2014

Something Rare Brewing at Rare Bird

Features Patrick Sullivan

Rare Bird, indeed. At most brew pubs, women are found behind the bar, taking orders or cooking. Not many women are brewers in the burgeoning world of craft beer, but that doesn’t mean there couldn’t—or shouldn’t—be more. An early pioneer on the Traverse City brewing scene was Kim Schneider, head brewer at North Peak several years ago. Schneider moved on and currently crafts beer at a downstate brewpub.

Now, brewer Tina Schuett has taken the beer-making baton and run with it.

 
Monday, October 27, 2014

The ‘King of Privacy' is in our Backyard

Features Patrick Sullivan After a failed bid to become a rock and roll star, he signed up for the military during the Vietnam War, during which time he was a Navy intelligence cryptographer. He worked in US intelligence at the height of the Cold War. He holds a Ph.D. in accounting ethics from Union College and a masters degree from Harvard.
 
Monday, October 20, 2014

Northern Express Election Guide 2014

Features Patrick Sullivan The results are in… Northern Express sent questionnaires to 16 state senate and house candidates from northern Michigan. We chose questions on issues we’ve followed over the last year.
 
Friday, October 10, 2014

Art or Vandalism?

A Local “Tagger” Speaks Out

Features Patrick Sullivan By definition, graffiti is illicit. In practice, street art has earned enough respect and admiration that it is tolerated in some places and celebrated in others.
 
Monday, October 6, 2014

Here and There, But Not Everywhere

Features Patrick Sullivan Cooney is no marijuana booster, however. He believes pot’s wider acceptance has led to an increase in use among high school students. And he notes that most people with medical marijuana cards are under 40 (the average age is 27) — indicators, he believes, of abuse of the law.
 
Monday, September 29, 2014

No Bus at the Station

Emmet County fights for its own public transportation

Features Patrick Sullivan “I have heard of that in the past, but never really investigated because it didn’t seem like there was that much of a service,” said Michael Mann, a buyer at the Grain Train Natural Foods Market who has lived without a car since he moved to Petoskey from Ann Arbor.
 
Monday, September 29, 2014

Winter is Coming

Is another ‘Polar Vortex’ coming along with it?

Features Patrick Sullivan 2014 also left us with a lot of questions — did it signal a new trend for colder winters? Was winter 2014 a record-breaker? Where did ‘polar vortex’ originate? What happened to global warming? What should we expect this winter?
 
Monday, September 22, 2014

Where Have All the Workers Gone?

Features Patrick Sullivan The dramatic decrease in northern Michigan’s migrant worker population in recent years can be attributed to many factors, but, regardless of the reasons, there is no question this trend could change the face of the region’s signature fruit industry, making the way we harvest cherries, wine grapes, apples, peaches and berries a thing of the past.
 
Monday, September 15, 2014

Bay Harbor

How It Happened Twenty Years Ago: An Industrial Wasteland Becomes a $1 Billion Resort

Features Patrick Sullivan

For most of the 20th century, the behemoth cement plant south of Petoskey was an economic driver that offered well-paying jobs for generations of workers. After the plant closed in 1980, the property sat idle for years and went into decay, coughing up powdery kiln dust and oozing leachate into the bay. Many saw the parcel’s development potential with its five miles of shoreline on Little Traverse Bay, beautiful views and easy access to Petoskey.

 
Monday, September 8, 2014

(Ultra) Marathon Man

Features Patrick Sullivan “My dad made a joke, ‘What could he do if he trained? Look how good he does now,’” Kaupas said. “One of my cousins goes, ‘You should come out and do the Leadville.’” That was in 2013. At first, Kaupas thought he could just sign up for the 2013 race and try it with little training.
 
 
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