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..

Topic: here
Monday, December 19, 2011

Letters 12/19/2011


Beware mailings

I just got another one of these political mailers from some Washington, D.C.-based group I have never heard of trying (and failing) to convince me that Congressman Dan Benishek is somehow saving my Medicare.

Hogwash. Last year, then-candidate Dan Benishek said on many occasions that he wants to end Medicare and Social Security. And the first thing he did when he went to congress was to just that. Rep. Benishek voted to end Medicare and force seniors to pay $6,400 of their own money to buy private healthcare while at the same time giving even more tax breaks to the super wealthy.

So it’s clear that this mailer is flat-out misleading people into believe the opposite...

Monday, January 9, 2012

Keep It Moving

Features Michael Moore These are excerpts from a talk Michael Moore gave to Occupy Traverse City at the group's Dec. 22 general assembly meeting held in the basement of Horizon Books on Front Street. The speech was transcribed and abridged by Patrick Sullivan.
Monday, March 26, 2012

Best Idea for Bringing Jobs to Northern Michigan?

Best of NM 2012 • Build a brewery • Finally build the Meijer store in Acme • Elect a new governor • Affordable housing in town • Expand Agritourism and farming • Artisan foods and beverages • Ask companies to come here because it is a great place to be • Better 3g...
Monday, March 26, 2012

Best Barista

Master Barista at Roast & Toast

Best of NM 2012 “I grew up in Alanson, but always hung out in Petoskey, and one day I walked into Roast & Toast and felt at home,” said Thompson. “The staff was really friendly, all the other people in the place seemed cool and the coffee drinks were delicious, so it became my hangout.
Monday, June 11, 2012

Letters 06-11-2012


Wetlands debatable

Patrick Sullivan proves here that there’s always ONE side to every story (re: “Upland Forest or Forested Wetlands?” 5/28/12). Actually, if you read through the sensationalism you see that there isn’t even a story here at all.

While the subtitle reads: “Environmentalist alleges Antrim County official looked the other way as wetlands were destroyed,” buried near the end we find this quote from the DEQ: “It is true that soil erosion officers don’t have any authority over wetlands, he said. It is up to the DEQ to issue Part 303 permits that allow the destruction of wetlands.”

So Heidi Shaffer (Antrim County soil erosion officer) did her job and is being persecuted because an environmentalist feels threatened and a couple from downstate has to share their “little piece of Northern Michigan” lakefront with a neighboring land owner? Shameful...

Monday, November 5, 2012

Liz Horn’s Life in Mexico

Now married, she and husband Russell Horn fight to return to U.S.

Features Rick Coates It was two years ago this week that Liz (Larios) Horn’s life was turned upside down. What seemed like a scene out of a movie became a reality as U.S. Immigration and Enforcement agents arrived in black suits and vehicles to the home Horn shared with her boyfriend Russell Horn.
Monday, December 2, 2013

Manistee Hosts an Old Christmas Weekend

If you have ever wondered whether time travel is possible, simply visit Manistee this weekend and you will find yourself instantly back in time.

Features Rick Coates Known as the “Victorian Port City,” many of the homes and buildings in downtown Manistee built during the Victorian era remain today. The community pays tribute to their history with the 25th Anniversary of the Manistee Victorian Sleighbell Parade & Old Christmas Weekend starting on Wednesday, December 4 and continuing through Sunday, December 8.
Monday, January 20, 2014

Letters 1-20-14

Letters Choices for the Traverse City Community

The History Center is in trouble and lacks enough funds to ensure its continued presence in our community. Meanwhile, our City Council is embarked on a path to figure out what went wrong with the splash pad, how to apportion blame and what it will take to fix it...

Support Native American Role

Thank you, Derek, for your well-written and informative article. May the TC Commission open their minds and hearts to honor the first national people in a beautiful, artful way at the Clinch Park area...

Addiction Here, Too

Thank you to Mike Morey for his article in the January 6 issue depicting sad scenes from inside an alcohol and drug detox unit. I hope more and more people begin to realize that addiction is rampant in our area, it’s not just relegated to “big cities” any more...

Energy Policy Should Ban Fracking

The insanity of fracking hit me one night while vacationing in Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota. At night the sky lights up with thousands of flares from fracking wells. Fracking there is done for oil because it is more valuable than gas...

Monday, April 21, 2014

A Century of Happy Campers

Features Ross Boissoneau As the Camp Arbutus centennial approaches this summer, the Northern Express sat down with camp director Amanda Macaluso, who talked about everything that makes the camp special – the way it brings kids back year after year, how some families send new campers with each generation, and the pull the camp has had on her throughout her adult life.