Traverse City Record-Eagle

August 21, 2013

Letters to the Editor: 08/21/2013

Traverse City Record-Eagle

---- — Department didn’t reply

This is in response to last week’s swan issue letter that suggested residents of Silver Lake should have been the first to call the authorities. One of my neighbors did call the sheriff’s department and was told that without the (personal watercraft’s registration) number they couldn’t do anything. Since she did not own either a jet ski or speedboat, she tried, unsuccessfully, to take pictures from the end of her dock. Another neighbor called the sheriff’s department and received a recorded message; she explained the problem, left her name and number, but did not get a reply.

We have not seen the surviving members of our swan family since the male was killed, and we wonder whether the Department of Natural Resources or other predators have “removed” the mother and babies as well.

Abbie J. Nelson

Traverse City

T.P.P. on the fast track

A NAFTA-like agreement, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, is being worked on quietly. T.P.P. is a trade deal of whose 29 chapters are for protecting corporations. The U.S. government would have to revise consumer protections to comply with weaker global standards. Our stricter ones, on meat importation for example, are being ruled as trade barriers.

U.S. corporations would get special foreign-investor protections to limit their cost of relocating to low-wage nations. T.P.P. would restrict the rights of our government to negotiate with pharmaceutical companies to get lower prices for bulk purchases. It would prohibit transaction taxes on investing and halt banking reforms that prevent risky investments. Copyrights would extend for 120 years, would monitor and cut off access to the Internet, control public utilities, transportation and education to allow any T.P.P. nation to provide those services.

No legislators are allowed to attend negotiations. “Fast Track” will be used, which allows the president to sign T.P.P. even before Congress votes. No amendments will be allowed and deliberations are strictly limited (Source: Jim Hightower’s Lowdown, a Washington, D.C. newsletter).

Marian Gyr