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: road
Monday, June 23, 2014

Queen of the Road

Music Kristi Kates “I feel responsible, because we are traveling with 22 people and it’s important to stay healthy,” Raitt said. “We have organic food at each venue. We get fresh air. I bring my yoga gear with me. And we carry bicycles underneath the bus so we can explore..
Monday, July 21, 2014

Letters 07-21-2014


While observing Fox News, it was disheartening to see what their viewers were subjected to. It seems the Republicans’ far right wing extremists are conveying their idealistic visions against various nationalities, social diversities or political beliefs with an absence of emotion concerning women’s health issues, children’s rights, voter suppression, Seniors, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid...

Things That Matter

All of us in small towns and large not only have the right to speak on behalf of our neighbors and ourselves, we have the duty and responsibility to do so -- and 238 years ago, we made a clear Declaration to do just that...

An Anecdote Driven Mind

So, is Thomas Kachadurian now the Northern Express’ official resident ranter? His recent factfree, hard-hearted column suggests it. While others complain about the poor condition of Michigan’s roads and highways, he rants against those we employ to fix them...

No On Prop 1

Are we being conned? Are those urging us to say “yes” to supposedly ”revenue neutral” ballot proposal 1 on August 5 telling us all the pertinent facts? Proposal 1 would eliminate the personal property tax businesses pay to local governments, replacing its revenue with a share of Michigan’s 6 percent use tax paid by us all on out-of-state purchases, hotel accommodations, some equipment rentals, and telecommunications...

Fix VA Tragedy

The problems within the Veterans Administration identified under former President Bush continue to hinder the delivery of quality health care to the influx of physically wounded and emotionally damaged young men and women...

Women Take Note

I find an interesting link between the Supreme Court Hobby Lobby and the crisis on the southern border. Angry protesters shout at children to go home. These children are scared, tired, hungry and thirsty, sent to US prisons awaiting deportation to a country where they may very likely be killed...

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin

Features Mike Terrell Looking for a quick summer getaway that involves a boat ride on Lake Michigan? Consider Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Via the Ludington/ Manitowoc car ferry, the lake crossing is fewer than 200 miles and takes less than five hours to complete. Once you’re off the ferry, it’s only a 45-minute trip to your destination.
Saturday, June 13, 2015

Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail Blazes New Paths

Features Patrick Sullivan Since the late 1970s, dreams of a multi-use trail in the park have been alive in the community and, for nearly 10 years, the trail has been an actual work in progress.
Friday, July 3, 2015

Your Guide to Northern Michigan Orchards

Dining Kristi Kates BLUEBERRY FOREST FARM | 3436 Tobias Road, Elmira 231-584-3443 | pickitfarmfresh.com/blueberry-forest-farm/michigan/elmira | Violet Beauregarde would love this place, which has been in operation since 2001. It’s nothing but blueberries, blueberries and more blueberries, with U-Pick available from 10am to 6pm. | FRUITS AVAILABLE: blueberries
Saturday, November 21, 2015

5 Gifts for the Outdoor Enthusiast

Features Kristi Kates LoopRope is one of those things your giftee might not even know she wants, but once she gets it, she’ll wonder how she ever backpacked, boated or camped without it.
Saturday, January 16, 2016

Hagerty Cycling Team Sets the Pace for Local Endurance Athletes

Features Clark Miller Elite level bicycle road racing is a team sport — one that requires cyclists to train together and use carefully-planned strategies so that their strongest teammate has a better chance to win. To compete nationally, it also takes some funding. The reality of a northern Michigan–based competitive road racing team became possible in 2007 when two things happened.
Saturday, January 23, 2016

Back With Arms Wide Open

Music Kristi Kates The alternately feted and maligned ‘90s rock band, the weight of mental illness, the public breakdown, the estranged bandmates, the reality show — singer Scott Stapp’s been through it all, but the confessional nature of his music and the support of his family have revived his career.
Saturday, March 26, 2016

Mr. Weather: Jim Keysor

Features Kristi Kates Driving to work is an autopilot program for most people, especially when their workday begins in the dark, as Jim Keysor’s does much of the year. When you’re a meteorologist, though, carefully observing the road conditions and precipitation on your way to the office is part of your job.
Saturday, April 9, 2016

Summer Road Projects Ahead

Features Ross Boissoneau Everyone knows there are two seasons in Michigan: winter and road construction — an old joke, but one that residents acknowledge has more than a little truth to it. Weather ravages and the steady erosion of pavement from cars and trucks mean detours, flag persons, and signs bearing the dreaded words “One Lane Road Ahead.