Re: Jobless, homeless stats don't tell whole story | Feb. 27, Jeff Webb column
Not yearning for the good old days
Mr. Webb warned us he may be accused of dwelling on the negative regarding the jobless and economic issues in his column. Yes, they were; however, they did hit on issues that affect most of us.
But to me it seemed more like a way of saying it's time for a "change," which we hear so much of today. He naturally insinuates this is all the current administration's fault and even goes back to Bush '91, saying the unemployment rate was even higher then and "incidentally, we were at war with Iraq then, too." Being that Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait and was literally raping and pillaging the country, I think even Ron Paul would agree with that decision.
Mr. Webb, why not go back even further? How about during the Jimmy Carter administration? Mortgages were between 14 and 16 percent. Gasoline prices were close to what they are now. I wasn't too proud to do what I had to do to care for my family. I worked my regular 40-hour job and took another full-time job as a janitor.
Most of the women and children you say are in shelters aren't there just because of the economy. It's largely the effect of irresponsible, so-called fathers putting them in this position. During the Carter days I didn't know of any stay-at-home moms due to the economy. The only people making big money were the companies selling wood-burning stoves, which were selling faster than they could make them due to the price of heating oil.
At least our hostages didn't have to suffer from these problems, as President Carter made sure they were being cared for, for 444 days. After President Ronald Reagan was elected they were released quickly.
Regardless of who our next president is I hope they don't return us to those "good old days!"
Gene Huber, Spring Hill
Insurance cost should be cheaper
I am sure I express the sentiments of homeowners in Florida concerning the rise in home insurance in the past three years. According to my insurance carrier, my dwelling has increased in value from $169,000 to $213,000 from March 2006 to March 2008. The premium has increased from $644 to $1,345.
As of January 2008, my identical home, but 12 years newer, is listed for $157,900. If my present home was completely destroyed, site clearing would be about $12,000. The new home would cost $169,900. There is no justification making me have $43,100 in extra coverage for my dwelling.
I realize that home prices increased until 2006 and hurricane coverage increased costs of a policy. Since 2006, home prices, both old and new, have declined. Insurance companies mention inflation, fuel, prices, materials and the cost of labor to justify increases. Apparently this has not been true since 2006. You should be getting a decrease in your policy, not an increase.
The insurance company, by inflating the price of your dwelling, also increases your deductible for a hurricane. Your deductible increases with the dwelling price increase. With minimal damage from a hurricane, you will collect very little compensation.
State senators want to know why Hartford, Allstate and Farm Bureau are asking for increases while Nationwide and Strategic have lowered their rates.
If you were concerned about taxes and Amendment 1, you should care about the abuses in the insurance industry.
Please write or call Kevin McCarty, Florida's insurance commissioner (850) 413-3140, who needs your support in fighting the insurance companies.
Bob Noble, Spring Hill
Re: Property rules put pinch on patriotism | Feb. 25, Andrew Skerritt column
Don't waste time with duplicates
Laws already cover flag displays.
The headline of this column seems to suggest another story of homeowner associations gone amok. In fact, the subject of American flags is a serious one.
However, had Mr. Skerritt done some basic research, he would have discovered Congress addressed this subject in H.R. 42, the Freedom to Display the American Flag Act of 2005. More surprising is state Sen. Mike Fasano's lack of knowledge of Florida statute 720.304(2), passed in 2007. This statute also addresses this issue in definitive terms.
Please, Sen. Fasano, don't waste time introducing bills already passed. Hopefully this was an oversight on the senator's part and not a grab for votes next election.
William Jenkins, Land O'Lakes
Are birds scarce because of strays?
Have you noticed that there are hardly any birds? I live in Weeki Wachee Hills, a bird sanctuary. Our sign is so old you can't even see it. I don't even think anybody even knows there is a Weeki Wachee Hills.
I have put out seed in my bird feeders, but no birds, not as before. Can it be that cats are running around loose here? Where are the animal controllers? Why isn't anyone calling up about stray cats or dogs in their area?
Donna Morrow, Spring Hill