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: really
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, January 30, 2012

From Farm to Table to… Poor House

Features Patrick Sullivan It is a struggle to make any money as an organic farmer in Northern Michigan, he says, as entrepreneurs in the industry face a bewildering patchwork of township and county regulation. Add in taxes and consumers who may talk up organic food, but who are unwilling to pay a premium for it, and organic farming begins to look like a recipe for bankruptcy.
Monday, March 26, 2012

Best Michigan Product

Best of NM 2012 When Short’s Brewing Company produced those first 178 barrels of beer in 2004, they must have known they were on to something special. Since then, production at their Bellaire brewpub and now the Elk Rapids brewery has grown exponentially, along with the popularity of the brand.
Monday, December 23, 2013

A Cold Blast From the Past

December, so far, has looked more like an old fashioned winter

Features Patrick Sullivan Extraordinarily cold, in fact. “This cold, this early and this long -- I’d have to say is a pretty big story,” said Scott Rozanski, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Gaylord. “It’s pretty cold. ... Had you moved up here five years ago and you’d lived up here for the last five years, you’d say, ‘I’ve never seen it like this.
Monday, August 25, 2014

Letters 08-25-14

Letters Save America

I read your paper because it’s free and I enjoy the ads. But I struggle through the left wing tripe that fills every page, from political cartoons to the vitriolic pen of Mr. Tuttle. What a shame this beautiful area of the state has such an abundance of Socialist/democrats. Or perhaps the silent majority chooses to stay silent...

Doom, Yet a Cup Half Full

In the news we are told of the civil unrest at Ferguson, Mo; ISIS war radicals in Iraq and Syria; the great corporate tax heist at home. You name it. Trouble, trouble, everywhere. It seems to me the U.S. Congress is partially to blame...

Uncomfortable Questions

defending the positions of the Israelis vs Hamas are far too narrow. Even Mr. Tuttle seems to have failed in looking deeply into the divide. American media is not biased against Israel, nor or are they pro Palestine or Hamas...

The Evolution of Man Revisited

As the expectations of manhood evolve, so too do the rules of love. In Mr. Holmes’s statement [from “Our Therapist Will See Us Now” in last week’s issue] he narrows the key to a successful relationship to the basic need to have your wants and needs understood, and it is on this point I expand...

Monday, February 9, 2015

Are You Kidding?

Features Patrick Sullivan Local improv group Good On Paper offers workshops in on-the-spot performance and two standup comedy promoters, Falling Down Stairs and Rotten Cherries, run open mic nights that give would-be wags a chance to test their stuff. Now, locals can watch comics take to the stages around town several nights each month.
Monday, April 6, 2015

Fredheads Rejoice!

Music Kristi Kates ROAD WARRIOR This alt-country singer-songwriter, whose fans are known as Fredheads, is an eclectic character — his music aside. He peppers his live shows with detailed, hilarious monologues between songs, giving insight to both his songwriting and his vagabond life.
Monday, May 11, 2015

Mustard Plug’s Ska-tastic Journey

Music Kristi Kates ABSOLUTE BEGINNERS “Dave [Kirchgessner, vocals] and Colin [Clive, guitar/vocals] used to see each other at all the punk shows in the ‘80s,” explained the band’s trombone player, Jim Hofer. “Once they both graduated college, they came up with the bright idea of starting a ska band in GR, since there were no ska bands there.
Saturday, June 13, 2015

Bill Engvall Headlines New Comedy and Music Fest

Features Kristi Kates “I really did want to be a teacher!” Engvall insisted. “Teachers make such a difference. I had a creative writing teacher, Mrs. Brown, who taught me how to be unafraid and to perform, and I think that’s where this all started. So I might go back and become a teacher when this is all over.
Friday, July 10, 2015

Licensed To Perform

Permits No Longer Required to Sing and Play in TC

Features Patrick Sullivan Maayingan and Kewayden Brauker’s grandmother had enough one day last June. She told the teenagers to get out of the house and do something. The brothers took acoustic guitars to the Jay Smith Walkway on Front Street in Traverse City. Maayingan played while Kewayden listened. They didn’t have a guitar case open on the ground to collect money; they were just hanging out.