Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

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Stephen Tuttle

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Monday, March 21, 2011

Driving under the bus 3/21/11

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Diving Under the Bus
Are we kidding?
There is a growing group of misinformed folks out there who seem to be
convinced public employee unions are the cause of both the recession and
the budget deficits. If only we could do away with those horrible unions
then everything will be all right.
Monday, March 14, 2011

The President‘s eyesight

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle The President’s Eyesight
Barack Obama will be reelected in 2012. Probably.
The president’s approval ratings continue to hover at or above 50% and the
gaggle of Republicans now posturing for a chance to oppose him does not
appear to include even one substantial opponent.
Of course, no current polling gives us the slightest hint as to how anyone
might vote come November, 2012. Some Republican, or small group of
Republicans, will eventually emerge from the pack with the ability to
launch a serious campaign. It might even be someone we’ve not yet
considered. Two years before the 2008 elections not many had heard of the
first-term Senator from Illinois with the funny name.
Monday, March 7, 2011

Baby citizens and overweight kids

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Baby Citizens & Overweight Kids
It’s time to once again visit the issue of illegal immigration. Sigh.
The latest foolishness on this front is attempts by 14 states to undo
parts of the 14th Amendment. Get it? Fourteen states, 14th Amendment? Very
clever. Efforts are also underway in Congress to amend the amendment.
Their concern is directed at the first line of Section 1 of the 14th
Amendment which reads: “All persons born or naturalized in the United
States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the
United States and of the states wherein they reside.”
Monday, February 28, 2011

A war against the middle

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle A War Against the Middle
There was a time in recent memory when expanding the middle class was considered such a good thing it was the underlying theme of almost all things political. Candidates and elected officials of all stripes promised, or at least discussed, improvements in public education, assistance for small business owners, protecting retirement programs, new technologies and job growth. In fact, we heard some of those very discussions during the 2010 campaigns.
The campaigns are now over and reality has come calling. Our newly elected leaders and their supporters have almost no interest in protecting or expanding the middle class. Quite the contrary. We are now witnessing a full-blown assault on the middle class.
Monday, February 21, 2011

Conservative confusion

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Conservative Confusion
The Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) just wrapped up in Washington, D.C., the city conservatives love to hate. A fine time was had by some.
These gatherings started way back in 1973, founded by the American Conservative Union, the oldest conservative membership organization in the country, and Young Americans for Freedom, a group of mostly college students. A stodgy old mainline group and another of fire breathing students made for strange political bedfellows but they shared a philosophical bent and a desire to strengthen and increase their numbers.
CPAC operated mostly in the dark for years. It wasn’t that they weren’t trying. They just couldn’t gain much traction with the media or the public. Ronald Reagan’s presidency gave them political legitimacy and power, and the advent of the internet enabled them them to increase both their reach and influence via a growing and more vocal conservative movement.
Their annual conference is now one of the signal events for serious conservatives. It’s well-publicized, well-attended and extraordinarily well-reported, especially since some of the leading lights of conservative talk radio have been featured speakers in the past.
Monday, February 14, 2011

JFK, Ronald Reagan and Hope

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle JFK, Ronald Reagan and Hope
The two modern ex-presidents with the most mystique both marked milestones
January was the 50th anniversary of President John Kennedy’s inauguration. And February would have been Ronald Reagan’s 100th birthday. Ironically, there were marked similarities between the dashing young liberal from Massachusetts and the dashing old conservative from California.
There is little debate that Kennedy was a different kind of president than what the country had been used to prior to 1960. Young, attractive, vibrant and with an even younger, beautiful wife he made everyone feel a little more optimistic about the future.
We liked him and wanted him to succeed.
Monday, February 7, 2011

Making History... for Better or Worse

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Making History... for Better or Worse

Egypt is on the brink. President Hosni Mubarak has already declared he
won’t seek reelection. By the time you read this the country may have
fallen into complete chaos or the military and police may have
ruthlessly cracked down on the demonstrators or some sort of
middle-ground sanity might have started to prevail.
Monday, January 31, 2011

Only One

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Only One 1/31/11

You might have noticed the early preening, posturing and positioning
for the 2012 Republican presidential primary races. The field of
likely, probable, possible and potential candidates has already grown
into quite a throng.
There’s Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, former New York City Mayor
Rudolf Giuliani, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, former
Vice Presidential candidate and Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin,
Congresswoman Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, former Massachusetts
Governor Mitt Romney, Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, former Senator
from Pennsylvania Rick Santorum, former Virginia Senator George Allen,
Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour and former Arkansas Governor Mike
Monday, January 24, 2011

The sorry state of our state

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle The Sorry State of Our States 1/24/11
It’s the time of year for State of the State addresses. If they are
honest, governors old and new will offer the same stark message –
states are in deep trouble.
Despite all the talk of the federal deficit, and it’s plenty bad, many
states are now facing calamitous deficits. Unlike the Feds, states
are confronted with constitutional requirements to balance their
budgets and they can’t just borrow from China or print more money.
Monday, January 17, 2011

Gunfire in Tucson

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Gunfire in Tucson 1/17/11
Another inexplicable massacre of innocents followed by another
outpouring of grief followed by another round of finger pointing
followed by another extended period of hand wringing followed by...
pretty much nothing. We’re getting good at this.
Who’s to blame? Everyone? No one? We always have a line-up of
suspects at the ready.
Monday, January 10, 2011

Grading the President

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Grading the President
The trouble with grading a politician is the grade is pretty much
dependent on how we feel about the person being graded. Many Democrats
would have given George W. Bush an F regardless of what he did. And many
Republicans would similarly grade Barack Obama regardless of what he does.
Obama finds himself in the unenviable position of being forced to piss off
both the right and the left and move toward the middle in order to govern.
It’s a lesson quickly learned by every president but, for some reason,
never learned by either opponents or supporters.
Monday, January 3, 2011

Deserving the Bill of Rights

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Deserving the Bill of Rights
The Bill of Rights has, more or less, been under attack from the
second it was ratified as the first 10 amendments to the Constitution
in 1791. Introduced by James Madison, all 10 were created as a way to
protect the rights of individuals and serve as a brake against the
It’s taken a real beating for the last half century or so.
The Fourth Amendment, which protects us against unreasonable searches
and seizures, was stomped on pretty good at the beginning of the
modern war on drugs.
Monday, December 27, 2010


Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Questions
Ah, yes, a new year. Time for noisemakers and funny hats and
predictions and resolutions.
Predictions for 2011 are just downright foolish. Nobody seems to have
a clue. Even corporations big and small are playing wait-and-see,
delaying expansion and hiring plans and stockpiling cash. At least the
big corporations have been stockpiling cash.
Monday, December 20, 2010

Naughty & Nice

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Naughty & Nice
In addition to good little boys and girls, there are all kinds of
people out there who have been nice this year.
There are teachers, fire fighters, nurses, doctors, law enforcement
officers and military personnel.
Monday, December 13, 2010

Donning our white apparel

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Donning our gay apparel
Traverse City has become the latest Michigan city to approve an
ordinance that prohibits discrimination against people based on their
sexual orientation. And just like in many of those other cities, a
group opposed to the ordinance is attempting to put the matter before