October 1, 2023

Stephen Tuttle | Author

Tilting at Budget Windmills

Sept. 30, 2023

By the time this column goes to print, the federal government could be shut down. Or, more rational voices within the Republican party will have been heard and at least some sort of stopgap budget deal will have been made to keep the government running.

This trip to the edge of an...

A Non-campaign Campaign

Sept. 23, 2023

You might have noticed the pregame activities for Traverse City’s TIF 97 extension campaign have already begun.

TIF 97 has been rebranded as the Moving Downtown Forward TIF, adding some pizzazz to it. And the third parking deck, touted for years as crucial, is not a parking ... Read More >>

Safe, Secure, and Fair

Sept. 16, 2023

Republican loyalists have their reasons for continuing to support Donald Trump.

Some simply can’t stand Democrats or Joe Biden and would vote for a lamppost if it was identified as a Republican. (Plenty of Democrats are just as blindly partisan.) Others claim they liked his ... Read More >>

Back to School...For Most

Sept. 9, 2023

Is there a dramatic teacher shortage in our country? Let’s see.

The country’s K-12 students have now returned to class, all 55.4 million of them being taught by just more than 4 million teachers. Most will be in traditional brick-and-mortar classrooms

Here...

Bank Accounts Instead of Scoreboards

Sept. 2, 2023

The college football season has begun in earnest, and almost everything about it, and college sports in general, is wildly different than it was just a decade ago. The goal of the game is essentially the same, but everything surrounding the game and college athletes has changed.

C...

Lessons of Lahaina

Aug. 26, 2023

It’s not as if they didn’t see it coming.

As early as 2016, Hawaiian Electric’s own internal documents highlight a growing risk of
failure of above ground transmission lines in storm and high wind conditions. They added that such failures could result in fi... Read More >>

Children at Risk

Aug. 19, 2023

Missing children, including those being exploited for sex and labor, have been much in the news lately. The numbers are staggering, but most children categorized as missing are not being trafficked.

We should also point out, though we shouldn’t have to, children are not miss... Read More >>

The Whataboutism Epidemic

Aug. 12, 2023

“Whataboutism” is a real word—at least according to Merriam-Webster—but so far, it hasn’t been officially recognized by any organization of psychologists, psychiatrists, or other mental health counselors. It is, however, a condition that afflicts more and mor... Read More >>

Some Local Odds and Ends for August

Aug. 5, 2023

Now that it appears the 2024 presidential election will be between someone indicted for dozens of felonies and an incumbent with an allegedly misbehaving son…well, let's take a break and see what’s happening locally.

That Hartman-Hammond bypass is turning into one ver... Read More >>

Where Facts Go to Die

July 29, 2023

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis says Florida is “where woke goes to die.” He could have more accurately said Florida middle schools are where facts, history, and reality go to die.

Those Florida students will receive some interesting information about racism in gene... Read More >>

Inconsiderate Protesters, Intolerant Speech

July 22, 2023

Last month, there was a bit of a dust-up at North Central Michigan College (NCMC) in Petoskey. They have a regular, ticketed event called the Luncheon Lecture Series, and on June 22, the lecture didn’t go so well.

The invited speaker was Paul Meneghini, the Community Engagem... Read More >>

Falling Farther Behind

July 15, 2023

Time for our semi-regular unofficial update on how the climate versus humans fight is progressing. We humans have thus far avoided a knockout blow, but we are way, way behind on points.

Let’s start with our normal advisory: Climate is weather patterns existing over a wide ar... Read More >>

Zoning Changes Deserve Discussion

July 8, 2023

The Traverse City Planning Commission recently recommended several zoning changes designed, they say, to help alleviate our current housing shortage. Any debate should come into sharp relief when the proposals are next discussed by the City Commission.

Though you won’t find ...

The Truth of Equality

July 1, 2023

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…”

Thomas Jefferson’s self-evident truth of equality did not apply to all men and not at all to women. Today, we just pretend it did.

But let’s back up.

Many hist...

The Crisis of Crises

June 24, 2023

We don’t just have problems to be solved these days—we have crises. There’s the mental health crisis, the housing crisis, and the opioid crisis, at a minimum.

Back in 1997, Michigan ordered the closing of all 16 state hospitals, a decision similar to that being m... Read More >>

Mysterious Support from Evangelicals

June 17, 2023

This is a tale of two Republican presidential candidates who both need the support of those identifying as evangelical Christians. Actually, it’s not just a tale—it’s a mystery. We’ll call them Candidate #1 and Candidate #2.

Candidate #1 is a serial adulter...

Same Trump, New Campaign Lies

June 10, 2023

At least one presidential candidate is back to his old ways, his lie machine barely slowing down. Here’s a sampling.

According to the Associated Press, Trump claims he “inherited record high unemployment” and created the “lowest unemployment in history.&rdq... Read More >>

More Heat, Less Water

June 3, 2023

Every agreement ever reached attempting to allocate Colorado River water has had the same problem—more water has been promised than actually exists.

In 1922, the seven states with a direct interest in the Colorado and its watershed came to an agreement called the Colorado Ri... Read More >>

Reparations Won’t Repair Much

May 27, 2023

Reparations for Black Americans is an idea as old as the Thirteenth Amendment ending slavery in 1865. General William Sherman wanted to appropriate 400,000 acres of former slave owners’ land and, with Field Order 15, provide former slave families with 40 acres of “tillable&rdq... Read More >>

No More Battlefield Flowers

May 20, 2023

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row…

John McCrae, a Canadian soldier and doctor, wrote those words during World War I (WWI) from the perspective of young men recently killed in battle. It became a memorial for all fallen soldiers in ever... Read More >>