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: security
Monday, January 7, 2013

Letters 01-07-2013


What to cut?... Time to talk deficit. Clinton left a budget surplus of over $200 billion. George Bush left a trillion dollar deficit.

Blind lawmakers... Lou Ann McKimmy decries the 182 bills passed in Michigan’s fall 2012 session in her lame duck outrage letter. Her issue seems to be there was no discussion on the bills and there was no time to read and understand them within the given time period.

Mckimmy would have credence had she wrote a similar letter after ObamaCare passed in the dead of night with no discussion and no time to read it. 

Capital idea... Yes to the three C’s (re: Rick Coates’ article on making the region a Culinary, Cultural and Craft Farming capital).

The truth about Israel... WORDS! How easy it is for them to be accepted as inflammatory, baring the view of the writer’s heart. Recent letters used the term “anti-Semitic” to describe critics of Israel, as if that gave their words weight. Being Jewish, I saw “anti-Zionist.”

Missing the mark... I couldn’t let Stephen Tuttle’s “December 26” column slip by without comment. Tuttle states: “Christmas Day is the focal point of the giving season for most of us. And the endpoint.”

Excuse me, but what is this based on?

Those wondrous women... A few hundred years ago, Edmund Spenser wrote about women: “Such wondrous forms ought rather worshipped be than dared be loved by men of mean degree.”

Had Spenser been writing in contemporary America he might have penned, “Such wondrous forms ought rather worshipped be than menaced by Republicans of mean degree."

Monday, March 24, 2014

Letters 03-24-2014


Homestead’s Position Disputed Thank you to the Express for the recent news item about ten local, state, and national organizations that joined together in a statement calling on The Homestead Resort and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to work together to correct the problem of incompletely-treated wastewater spray blowing into an area of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, rendering it unavailable for public use. Here is just one clarification...

Done With Snyder Governor Snyder lowered taxes on well-off businesses while raising nearly everyone else’s taxes, undermining both education and the labor movement, which together created Michigan’s strong middle class. His actions also dismantled protections for our priceless Great Lakes shorelines...

Gerrymandering is Alive I have major disagreements with Stephen Tuttle’s column from March 17th. Let’s start with an agreement that conservatives do control the majority of the congressional districts and state legislatures, but let’s also tell the real reason...

Benishek No Environmentalist For Dan Benishek to say he is responsible for preserving a natural wonder (Sleeping Bear Preservation Act) is akin to Al Gore saying he invented the Internet...

CORRECTION: In the March 17 issue, we mistakenly identified the Holiday Inn as “best deck scene” in the Traverse City Best area listings. In fact, their new name is West Bay Beach, a Holiday Inn Resort.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Sublime to Ridiculous

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle

The 11th Traverse City Film Festival is upon us. This is a good thing. It’s an especially good thing if you enjoy movies you would not otherwise have a chance to see. And if you enjoy talking movies with people you wouldn’t otherwise meet.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Potential Indicators of Trafficking Victims

Features 1. Not free to leave or come and go as he/ she pleases 2. Works excessively long hours, paid through tips 3. Owes large debt and is unable to pay it off 4. Recruited through false pretenses concerning the nature and condition of work 5. High security exists including opaque windows, boarded up windows, bars on windows, security cameras 6.
Saturday, March 19, 2016

Letters 03-21-2016


Earth to Trumpsters Our technical team set out to make preliminary plans for the big wall that President Trump will build on the Mexican border. We arrived in Brownsville, Texas to discover, much to our surprise, that the border there consists of a river called the Rio Grande. Extensive research by our experts (on Wikipedia) revealed that the border meanders northwesterly for 1,248 miles along this river to the city of El Paso, Texas (or only 889 miles if you don’t measure every little bend)...

The Social Security “Problem” Social Security needs fixing. But before we embark upon a “fix,” perhaps we should look back on what happened to this great program so history will not repeat itself. Where did the money go? The answer lies in 1983, when the Great Republican President Ronald Reagan signed the Social Security Amendments. This increased payroll taxes, ostensibly to invest and fund Social Security’s future. However, it allowed the government to remove nearly $3 trillion over time for use within the General Fund...

Bring Some Civility I find it ironic that Northern Express publishes an issue decrying a lack of civility, polarization, anger and bigotry while at the same time, in that very same issue, it publishes insulting mean spirited cartoons aimed at conservatives...

Saturday, March 26, 2016

A Brief Review

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Republicans have a clear frontrunner in Donald Trump and two also-rans, Ted Cruz and John Kasich. Cruz and Kasich are mostly interested in preventing Trump from getting to the GOP convention with a majority of delegates; they have little chance of winning outright.
Saturday, April 16, 2016

Nuclear Nightmares

Other Opinions Jack Segal After the attacks on Paris in November 2015, authorities discovered video surveillance footage of what appeared to be an ordinary residence. But further investigation revealed that the house being monitored belonged to a senior official of the Belgian nuclear industry.
Saturday, June 25, 2016

Blue Angels Blues

Other Opinions Stephen Tuttle Our local Veterans for Peace organization, comprised of honorable men and women who served in the military, is leading a small but vocal group insisting that the Blue Angels fly on by us and go someplace else. (Full disclosure: They were nice enough to ask me to speak to their group some years ago.)
Saturday, July 9, 2016

Will Nato Survive “BREXIT”?

Other Opinions Jack Segal In the June 23 referendum known as “Brexit” — shorthand for Britain’s exit from the European Union — a clear majority of voters across the United Kingdom (Great Britain, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales) chose to leave the EU. Only in London, Scotland and Northern Ireland did the “stay” camp prevail.