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: lakes
Monday, December 10, 2012

Water & the West

Observations of a Michigander cycling through the green deserts of the West

Features Bob Otwell Last fall, my wife Laura and I embarked on an adventure. With good health and time available, we cleared our schedules and relied on friends and family to fill in on the home front. We dropped our youngest daughter off at college, and took off for a 10-month, 9,000-mile journey around the perimeter of the USA on touring bicycles.
Monday, September 16, 2013

Pirates of the Great Lakes

Features Kristi Kates And you can even ‘celebrate’ pirates this September 19, which nerd-cred confirms is the official International Talk Like a Pirate Day - but you’d best go online to brush up on your pirate-speak, else you might get sent to walk the plank for your landlubber accent.
Monday, December 1, 2014

The Great Lakes Chamber Orchestra’s Next Chapter

Music Kristi Kates Celebrating 12 years producing live orchestra performances for the Petoskey community, the Great Lakes Chamber Orchestra continues to grow with the recent addition of Anne McDevitt as the organization’s executive director and the appointment of Dr. Libor Ondras, originally from Slovakia, as the new music director and conductor.
Monday, February 16, 2015

Dates 02-16-2015

Dates Jamie Kauffold Benzie County’s Song of the Lakes is just one of the 50+ groups you’ll hear perform at the FREE Great Lakes Indoor Folk Festival this Sunday, Feb. 22 at the Mercato at Grand Traverse Commons & Left Foot Charley, TC from 12-5:30pm. Enjoy folk, Sweetwater Sea music, Celtic, Scandinavian, & Great Lakes music from this band.
Monday, March 2, 2015

Dates 03-02-2015

Dates Jamie Kauffold Benzie County’s Song of the Lakes is just one of the 50+ groups you’ll hear perform at the FREE Great Lakes Indoor Folk Festival this Sunday, Feb. 22 at the Mercato at Grand Traverse Commons & Left Foot Charley, TC from 12-5:30pm. Enjoy folk, Sweetwater Sea music, Celtic, Scandinavian, & Great Lakes music from this band.
Monday, April 20, 2015

Northern Michigan Environmental Watchlist

Features Patrick Sullivan “One of the hurdles we face with the lakes, particularly in our region, is the beauty of them,” Inland Seas Educational Association Executive Director Fred Sitkins said. “Because there’s not a large floating garbage patch out there, it’s not there in a lot of people’s eyes.
Saturday, August 8, 2015

Welcome Aboard the Floating Classrooms of Grand Traverse Bay

Features Patrick Sullivan “I was doing that and going to college, trying to figure out what I was doing with my life, and I saw this unique experience occurring and I just loved it. I watched kids learn and all I could think about was, ‘Man, why wasn’t school like that for me?’ I hated school,” Sitkins said.
Saturday, December 5, 2015

Paddling to the Sea with Song of the Lakes

Music Kristi Kates Their sound is comprised of many influences, from Scandinavian elements to the blues, with the water running through each and every one. Their very name is evocative of the region we all live in. And they’ve been a familiar local sound to many since 1983.
Saturday, March 19, 2016

Great Lakes Cruise Company

Features Kristi Kates With ship names like the Grande Caribe and the Pearl Mist, you might picture yourself plying the warm currents between Cozumel and Miami or perhaps making the rounds of the jeweled islands of the Bahamas, but one company is marketing cruises that echo the vessels, amenities and activities of more tropical locales — on the waters of our own Great Lakes.
Saturday, March 19, 2016

Meet The Great Lakes!

Features Kristi Kates

Whether you’ve lived here your entire life, relocated here, fly up to ski or drive up just for the summers, how much do you really know about the lakes that surround us? The largest group of freshwater lakes in the world — each in their own separate basin — forms a connected body of fresh water that continues to the St. Lawrence River and the Atlantic Ocean. While the lakes are similar in some ways, they also each have their own unique characteristics and highlights.