Northern Express - Letters http://www.northernexpress.com/michigan/articles.sec-144-1-letters.html <![CDATA[Letters 03-02-2015 - ]]> American Exceptualism Rudy Giuliani was espousing his opinion to Fox News that Barack Obama did not love America and didn’t brag enough about “American Exceptionalism.”

Fur Is Not Chic When my 25-pound dog stepped in a toothed steel leg hold trap a few ft off the trail, I learned how “unchic” fur is. I had to carry her out two miles to get to a vet.

Which Is More Dangerous? Just a couple of thoughts I had in response to the letters by Gordon Lee Dean and Jarin Weber in the Feb. 23 issue. Mr. Dean claims that there have been zero deaths from the measles in the past ten years.

Real Action on Climate In “Climate Madness” in the Feb. 9 issue, the writer points out that scientists are all but unanimous and that large numbers of people agree: global warming poses a threat to future generations.

Real Science Wolfgang Pauli, the Nobel Prize winning Austrian-born theoretical physicist, was known not only for his work in postulating the existence of the neutrino but feared for his razor-edged humor.

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<![CDATA[Letters 02-23-2015 - ]]> Vaccines And Israel Apparently Stephen Tuttle thinks that whatever he writes is accepted as fact according to his February 9th article titled “Outrageous.”

Turn Your Lights On I’ve mentioned this before in this column, but here we go again.

Measles Facts, Not Fear I am responding to Mr. Steven Tuttle, who stated in a recent column that politicians who support parents’ rights to make vaccine choices for their children are promoting fear mongering rather than science.

Media Or President? Fox’s Heather Childers took exception to President Obama’s use of the term “YOLO” (you only live once) in a healthcare.gov promotional video by responding with “Well, you know who’s not alive? Kayla Mueller.”

Silence Cheapens Us All Brian Williams, the deposed NBC news anchor, was recently crucified upside down on the cross of conservative obscenities.

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<![CDATA[Letters 02-16-2015 - ]]> The TPP And My 401k In response to Beverly Christensen’s letter in the February 9 edition, I have to say that YES I am alarmed about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal that is now being negotiated.

Fine Tune The Cherry Fest As a kid who grew up on Michigan’s west shore, I love cherries. During WWII, kids in junior high were enlisted to pick cherries because of the labor shortage, and I’ve had a warm spot for cherries ever since.

The Stupid Party? In a January 2013 address to the Republican National Committee, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal issued the following warning to his fellow Republicans: “We’ve got to stop being the stupid party.”

Respect The Cherry Fest Regarding Jack Lane’s column critiquing the National Cherry Festival, clearly Mr. Lane’s business is not affected by tourism.

Anti-Vacc Not Conservative Steve, reading your opinion piece in Feb. 9th Northern Express, I could not have been more shocked to see you pin the anti-vaccine speech to conservative thinking.

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<![CDATA[Letters 02-09-2015 - ]]> Applause For “Next” Issue The February 2 edition of Northern Express is/was the best issue I’ve read in some time.

Climate Madness Recent polls show that not only do large portions of our population agree that global warming is a real result of our use of carbon energy, but also scientists are almost unanimous in their agreement that global warming is real, will lead to the catastrophe of our current world and will prevent our grandchildren from leading a life anywhere near normal.

No To Multinational Deal Are you alarmed about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)?

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<![CDATA[Letters 02-02-2015 - ]]> History Lesson  “The days of cheap oil and easy acquisition are over. “ -- President Obama, June 2010

A Study In Mudslinging In the January 12 issue of Northern Express, Grant Parsons wrote a piece that touched on behind-the-scenes campaign financing. Mr. Parsons referenced attack ads he received in the mail prior to the November elections.

Sad Story I read with sadness in the Detroit Free Press of 24-year-old Angela Marie Alexie, who abandoned her just born baby boy in an unheated Eastpoint, Michigan garage to die alone in the cold, and who had also previously lost 3 children to foster care, the youngest of which, a girl, suffered withdrawal symptoms because of Alexie’s drug use during pregnancy.

Balance On The Page Having looked through the Northern Express for years, I have finally found something worth reading besides News of the Weird and the Advice Goddess!

An Eye On Congress The U.S. Senate on January 21 voted 98 for and 1 against to adopt a non-binding resolution stating, “It is the sense of the Senate that climate change is real and not a hoax.”

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<![CDATA[Letters 01-26-2015 - ]]> Food Isn’t What It Was In regards to your article on nutrition being a key weapon for battling cancer, the problem is that much of our food has little nutritional value.

The Real Muslim Issues At least [Express columnist] Tom Kachadurian is being honest when he confesses a long-held family resentment towards Muslims

Applauding Opinions Kudos to the Northern Express for inviting guest editors to write columns. I have enjoyed the timely columns of Scott Hardy particularly

Party For The People One political party opposes minimum wage increases, pushes “right to work” legislation state-to-state, and finds it their mission to eliminate labor unions and the benefits they bring to everyday workers

Big Money Politics Wins Again I’m in agreement with Grant Parsons’ opinion column published in the 1/12 edition of the Express.

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<![CDATA[Letters 01-19-2014 - ]]> Cancerous Costs My heart goes out to all those dealing with cancer. Sadly, I think the truth is we will never see a cure for cancer as long as treatment for cancer is so lucrative. True story: A friend had monthly cancer treatments…$8,000 per treatment for roughly 2 1/2 years.

My Favorite Opinions Betsy Coffia tackles vital but challenging local issues and does her research; her clear thinking and writing about Michigan’s stuggles with gas and oil agendas, both hidden and manipulative tactics, takes brave digging below the surface!

You Own Your Health January 29th, 2007 was the day I made the decision to lose weight and get healthy. The rules on how to do this were always in front of me but I didn’t want to listen to them. Gradually, at the rate of two pounds per month, I lost 45 pounds and have kept it off. My energy soared and a “new me” emerged from the ashes.

Dirty Money Redux Grant Parsons’ opinion piece highlights the serious issues with the recent Inman campaign. While Ms. Coffia took the high road with her campaign of “She Can’t Be Bought” — not accepting money from PAC’s, Lobbyists or Special Interest Groups, Mr. Inman decided to take the low road using substantial outside funding in the final weeks of the campaign. When I received the first negative post card against Ms. Coffia I called Mr. Inman’s campaign HQ to ask where the money was coming from - and the person answering said, “I don’t know.”

Defending Our Law Enforcement I address this note to the “cartoonist” responsible for fostering lies about law enforcement. To your readers, please look at the facts before making ignorant presumptions.

Now Who’s Ridiculing Drilling? Remember when conservatives advocated for “Drill, baby, drill?” And how the left ridiculed the idea? Hmm, the silence is deafening...


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<![CDATA[Letters 01-12-2015 - ]]> Thoughts on Aging  Sometimes I write about topics that a lot of us think about, but nobody writes about. Today, the topic is aging, and how we feel about it.

Jesus Was Real My interest was piqued upon reading your Crossed column in the November 10 issue entitled, “Jesus: God Man or Good Man?” featuring Pastor Nick Twomey and Gary Singer

Charity as Marketing Tactic In Thomas Kachadurian’s recent guest opinion, “Real Charity,” he explained how big businesses use charity contributions and community programs as marketing and public relations tools

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<![CDATA[Letters 12-29-2014 - ]]> A Community Thanks In this day and time when just about everyone seems to think about just looking out for themselves, I wanted write a sincere testimonial to three businesses here in Traverse City.

Addiction Hard to Escape Regarding your Dann’s House story (12/15/14), thank you! Who amongst us does not know someone, or have a close friend or relative, with an addiction problem that spills onto those around, including the wider community? How many of us could be on the edge?

Democracy to the Highest Bidder Welcome to the new reality…democracy is now available to the highest bidder. Maybe someone could explain the difference between our Washington politicians and the mafia.

Praise for Stephen Tuttle To date, I have only communicated once concerning a Stephen Tuttle column, and that was to convey my strong disagreement with his position about the then-new Michigan right to work law.

Kudos to Wet House Good article on the ‘Wet House’ and recognition to Traverse City Police Captain Jeff O’Brien. It is encouraging to hear of the police being helpers rather than bullies.

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<![CDATA[Letters 12-22-2014 - ]]> Affordable Housing Alternatives In Scott Hardy’s opinion piece in the December 15 edition, he offered six concrete ideas to address the ongoing community discussion about increasing affordable in-town housing in Traverse City.

Powerful Homeless Event Homelessness is far more complex than we thought. “Everyone Has a Story—Sit and Share Our Bench” was a wondrous performance Sunday, December 7, that opened my eyes to a wide range of experiences with homelessness, bridging the gap between “us and them.”

Long-Lasting Effects of Measles I understand several cases of measles have occurred in Traverse City. I also became aware that in Michigan, persons are three times less likely to be immunized.

Changing The Electoral College Republicans are thinking about changing how Michigan allocates Electoral College votes. Michigan, like all but two states, gives all of its electoral votes to the statewide winner of the popular vote.

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<![CDATA[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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<![CDATA[Letters 12-08-2014 - ]]> Thanks For Thanksgiving Nice “Thank You” letter by Stephen Tuttle [in the November 24 edition]. Good idea.

Don’t Give A Dog or Cat! The holidays are “the most wonderful time of the year,” but they aren’t a wonderful time to add a new dog, cat, or other animal companion to the family. That’s why it’s important to resist the temptation to give a living, breathing animal as a “gift.”

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<![CDATA[Letters 12-01-2014 - ]]> Act For the Future “What worries you, masters you,” according to John Locke. Anyone paying attention these days has plenty to worry about; things like endless war, accelerating climate change, lack of meaningful living-wage jobs, and internal threats to such rights as voting and privacy.

Retail Fairness Now Last year, the Senate passed the Marketplace Fairness Act, bipartisan legislation that would provide retailers in Michigan with a fair chance to compete with online sellers. In July, the Senate again made efairness a priority by introducing the Marketplace and Internet Tax Fairness Act.

Letter to Santa Dear Santa, I am sending my letter to you a bit early this year. The toy you sent me so very long ago is broken, and cannot be fixed. They used to make things better when I was still a kid. Too much plastic these days, it seems.

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<![CDATA[Letters 11-24-2014 - ]]> Dangerous Votes You voted for Dr. Dan. Thanks!Rep. Benishek failed to cosponsor H.R. 601. It stops subsidies for big oil companies. He failed to cosponsor H.R. 1084. There is an exemption for hydraulic fracturing written into the Safe Drinking Water Act. H.R. 1084. It would require the contents of fracking fluids to be publicly disclosed to protect the public health.

Solar Is The Answer There have been many excellent letters about the need for our region, state and nation to take action on climate change. Now there is a viable solution to this ever-growing problem: Solar energy is the future.

Real Minimum Wage In 1966, a first class stamp cost 5 cents and minimum wage was $1.25. Today, a first class stamp is 49 cents, so federal minimum wage should be $11.25.

Doesn’t Seem Warmer I enjoy the “environmentalists” twisting themselves into pretzels trying to convince us that it is getting warmer. Sure it is... ]]>
<![CDATA[Letters 11-17-2014 - ]]> <![CDATA[Letters 11-10-2014 - ]]> Aim For More Renewable Energy:  “Aim High!” Isn’t that a goal for all of us? When I look at states surrounding Michigan and even other countries, they have lofty but attainable goals for increasing their renewable energy. Michigan’s goal, set in 2008, to have 10 percent of our energy coming from renewable energy by the end of 2015, is rather pitiful compared to the states that want to attract new industries -- and 2015 is about here.

Market-Based Climate Solution: The International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its “synthesis report” on Sunday, stating states that global climate disruption is happening faster than previously predicted. Therefore, we need to transition to non-carbon forms of energy as quickly as possible.

Snow Removal Through The Years: An 1886 editorial in the Grand Traverse Herald declared, “Something should be done with the snow plow jobs. On such a day as last Saturday the plows should have done a good job of clearing the soft snow from the walks. At best the walks have not been opened so that two persons could walk together with any degree of comfort.”

A Living Wage: I frequently hear politicians on both sides say that they are going to create jobs. The recent Proposal 1 which eliminated business personal property taxes was worded to include “create jobs” to trick people into voting yes.

Tax cuts and reduced regulations create profit, not jobs. Consumer demand creates jobs. If a business is operating at only half capacity, that owner will likely lay off employees not hire more. It is only when the business is operating at full capacity that new employees will be hired to keep up with demand. How do we increase consumer demand?


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<![CDATA[Letters 11-03-2014 - ]]> Cherish Your Right: Americans can be assured and proud of the way elections are conducted in the United States. Laws and policies provide guidelines and rules which assure that elections are honest and results are accurate.

Land Swap Respectful To Native American: My wife and children are proudly Native American, so our family cares deeply about tribal culture and heritage. We are pleased to know that my employer, St. Marys Cement, has completed an archaeological study in conjunction with the proposed land swap in and next to Fisherman’s Island State Park.

Peace Be Upon Him …a Question: Mr. Obama tells us that Islam is not at war with the United States, and we can “reset” to a new, kinder, gentler, more productive relationship with the Moslem world. We’re also told that religion is not an issue between the people of Islam and the sinful people of America. “Politics is the issue,” he tells us.

Support Our Children: Education is paramount to a vibrant and thriving community. Our schools are some of the best in the state offering worldclass education opportunities in pre-k through 12th grades including two high schools recognized as “top high schools in the nation”, Advanced Placement and early college courses, International Baccalaureate and Montessori programming, fully funded early childhood for those eligible, and, athletic and fine arts programming second to none.

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<![CDATA[Letters 10-27-2014 - ]]> Paging Doctor Dan: The doctor’s promise to repeal Obamacare reminds me of the frantic restaurant owner hurrying to install an exhaust fan after the kitchen burns down. He voted 51 times to replace the ACA law; a colossal waste of money and time. It’s here to stay and he has nothing to replace it.

Evolution Is Real Science: Breathtaking inanity. That was the term used by Judge John Jones III in his elegant evisceration of creationist arguments attempting to equate it to evolutionary theory in his landmark Kitzmiller vs. Dover Board of Education decision in 2005.

U.S. No Global Police: Steven Tuttle in the October 13 issue is correct: our military, under the leadership of the President (not the Congress) is charged with protecting the country, its citizens, and its borders. It is not charged with  performing military missions in other places in the world just because they have something we want (oil), or we don’t like their form of government, or we want to force them to live by the UN or our rules.

Graffiti: Art Or Vandalism?: I walk the [Grand Traverse] Commons frequently and sometimes I include the loop up to the cistern just to go and see how the art on the cistern has evolved. Granted there is the occasional gross image or word but generally there is a flurry of color.

NMEAC Snubbed: Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) is the Grand Traverse region’s oldest grassroots environmental advocacy organization. Preserving the environment through citizen action and education is our mission.

Vote, Everyone: Election Day on November 4 is fast approaching, and now is the time to make a commitment to vote. You may be getting sick of the political ads on TV, but instead, be grateful that you live in a free country with open elections. Take the time to learn about the candidates by contacting your county parties and doing research.

Do Fluoride Research: Hydrofluorosilicic acid, H2SiF6, is a byproduct from the production of fertilizer. This liquid, not environmentally safe, is scrubbed from the chimney of the fertilizer plant, put into containers, and shipped. Now it is a ‘product’ added to the public drinking water.

Meet The Homeless: As someone who volunteers for a Traverse City organization that works with homeless people, I am appalled at what is happening at the meetings regarding the homeless shelter. The people fighting this shelter need to get to know some homeless families. They have the wrong idea about who the homeless are.

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<![CDATA[Letters 10-20-2014 - ]]> Doctor Dan? After several email conversations with Rep. Benishek, he has confirmed that he doesn’t have a clue of what he does. Here’s why...

In Favor Of Our Parks [Traverse] City Proposal 1 is a creative way to improve our city parks without using our tax dollars. By using a small portion of our oil and gas royalties from the Brown Bridge Trust Fund, our parks can be improved for our children and grandchildren.

From January 1970 Popular Mechanics: “Drastic climate changes will occur within the next 50 years if the use of fossil fuels keeps rising at current rates.” That warning comes from Eugene K. Peterson of the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management.

Newcomers Might Leave: Recently we had guests from India who came over as students with the plan to stay in America. He has a master’s degree in engineering and she is doing her residency in Chicago and plans to specialize in oncology. They talked very candidly about American politics and said that after observing...

Someone Is You: On Sept 21, I joined the 400,000 who took to the streets of New York in the People’s Climate March, followed by a UN Climate Summit and many speeches. On October 13, the Pentagon issued a report calling climate change a significant threat to national security requiring immediate action. How do we move from marches, speeches and reports to meaningful work on this problem? In NYC I read a sign with a simple answer...

Necessary To Pay: Last fall, Grand Traverse voters authorized a new tax to fix roads. It is good, it is necessary.

The Real Reasons for Wolf Hunt: I have really been surprised that no one has been commenting on the true reason for the wolf hunt. All this effort has not been expended so 23 wolves can be killed each year. Instead this manufactured controversy about the wolf hunt has been very carefully crafted to get Proposal 14-2 passed.

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<![CDATA[Letters 10-10-2014 - ]]> Shameful TV Ads: Like so many others, I’m watching my weekend sports shows. Over the course of these shows we get bombarded with political ads, most from the right wing side of the spectrum. There are also those anti ads, the kind that are intended to cast a bad light on a particular candidate as opposed to extolling the virtues of the opposition.

Franz Not Thriving:
A recent mailing from Ray Franz claims his “strong policies help our families thrive.” I checked out a few of his policies to see what they provide.

The Homeless Area: Think about where all the homeless assistance facilities, addiction treatment facilities, are located. Think about the growing number of homeless and why. Think about the big picture of who this directly impacts as Traverse City grows. All of these facilities are in the same general area in TC.

How To Vote. Literally: Voting, marking your ballot, is how you register your political preferences and is the foundation of our democracy. What could be more important than making sure your ballot states your wishes accurately and completely as possible?

Revisiting Minervini’s Column On Poor: Just wanted to commend Christie Minervini on her column on the poor. She hit the nail on the head on many issues.

Politics & Worshiping: We frequently hear the old adage: “Never discuss politics or religion”. I quickly noticed that what we really mean is: “Never discuss the other fellow’s perspective on politics or religion.”

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