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: north
Monday, December 3, 2012

Ice Boating an ancient sport in a modern world

Features John L. Russell

The docks have been pulled from the lakes, and the boats are covered and stored for the winter.

It’s time to go sailing. Iceboating, to be more precise.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Downtown Petoskey Perks Up

Dining Kristi Kates THE MENU Local, local, local is a big part of North Perk’s mantra. They try to work with as many local companies in general, using bakeries like Johan’s, Crooked Tree Breadworks, and My Sister’s Bake Shop for their daily baked goods, bagels, cookies, and granola bars, some of which are gluten-free and/or vegan.
Monday, June 23, 2014

Napa, Bordeaux…and Mackinaw City

New wineries are popping up north of the 45th Parallel

Features Ross Boissoneau “There is a big future ahead for Michigan wines,” wrote Dan Berger, a syndicated wine columnist from Santa Rosa, Calif., on the Michigan Wine Council website. “Out on the West Coast, you can’t find a good Riesling for under $15. Here they cost $10 to $12.
Friday, October 10, 2014

So You Wanna Be a Model?

Features Kristi Kates Models have gone through many styles through the decades, from the flappers of the ‘20s to the ‘60s Twiggy era. In the ‘80s, the first wave of glamorous “supermodels” surfaced, while the ‘90s brought the darker, “heroin chic” look. Androgynous, futuristic styles came into vogue as the century turned to 2000.
Monday, December 8, 2014

Cary Adgate’s Top Ten Picks for Up North Winter Fun

Features Kristi Kates Cary Adgate is an inductee of the U.S. National Ski and Snowboard Hall of Fame, a former U.S. Ski Team member, U.S. National Ski Champion and two-time Olympian, having spent 18 years on top of the world-class ski competition circuit.
Saturday, April 16, 2016


Features Kristi Kates Developed by trail riders in the early ‘60s with the help of Michigan Sen. William Milliken, the subdued Michigan Shore-to-Shore Trail (officially established in 1962) is perfect for those who want to see both northern Michigan legendary shorelines.
Saturday, April 23, 2016

Meet Pierre François Xavier de Charlevoix

Features Kristi Kates While the exact dates may not be certain, the namesake is. Originally named Pine River, both the city and the county of Charlevoix were later renamed, sometime between 1836 and 1854, in honor of Pierre François Xavier de Charlevoix, a fascinating character whose name would carry on in northern Michigan, as well as across Canada.
Saturday, April 23, 2016

Life on the 45th

Features Kristi Kates The 45th parallel north is a line of latitude running all the way around the globe. To northern Michiganians, it’s also a very special mark of the region where we live, as evidenced by its use in such local projects and companies as Parallel 45 Theatre, Latitude 45 Cycling Store, Parallel 45 Vines and Wines, Studio 45 Dance and 45th Parallel Realty.
Saturday, April 30, 2016

Letters 05-02-2016


Facts About Trails I would like to correct some misinformation provided in Kristi Kates’ article about the Shore-to-Shore Trail in your April 18 issue. The Shore-to-Shore Trail is not the longest continuous trail in the Lower Peninsula. That honor belongs to the North Country Trail (NCT), which stretches for over 400 miles in the Lower Peninsula. In fact, 100 miles of the NCT is within a 30-minute drive of Traverse City, and is maintained by the Grand Traverse Hiking Club...

North Korea Is Bluffing I eagerly read Jack Segal’s columns and attend his lectures whenever possible. However, I think his April 24th column falls into an all too common trap. He casually refers to a nuclear-armed North Korea when there is no proof whatever that North Korea has any such weapons. Sure, they have set off some underground explosions but so what? Tonga could do that. Every nuclear-armed country on Earth has carried out at least one aboveground test, just to prove they could do it if for no other reason. All we have is North Korea’s word for their supposed capabilities, which is no proof at all...

Double Dipping? In Greg Shy’s recent letter, he indicated that his Social Security benefit was being unfairly reduced simply due to the fact that he worked for the government. Somehow I think something is missing here. As I read it this law is only for those who worked for the government and are getting a pension from us generous taxpayers. Now Greg wants his pension and he also wants a full measure of Social Security benefits even though he did not pay into Social Security...

Critical Thinking Needed Our media gives ample coverage to some presidential candidates calling each other a liar and a sleaze bag. While entertaining to some, this certainly should lower one’s respect for either candidate. This race to the bottom comes as no surprise given their lack of respect for the rigors of critical thinking. The world’s esteemed scientists take great steps to preserve the integrity of their findings. Not only are their findings peer reviewed by fellow experts in their specialty, whenever possible the findings are cross-checked by independent studies...

Saturday, August 20, 2016

20 Fascinating People

Features Welcome to our third annual look at twenty of the most interesting people around. We’ve featured the likes of astronauts and ten-year-old prodigies, and this year we have a full-time Elvis, an arts legend, and one of the world’s best sailors. What all twenty all have in common? They call northern Michigan home.