Part B costs to rise in 2018 | Oct. 14
Seniors keep getting squeezed
The 2 percent Social Security cost of living adjustment for 2018 is way below the cost of living increases seniors have incurred and desperately need help in dealing with. Using the same trick played on us last year — applying the tiny increase to Medicare and raising the cost of that — is unfair to those of us who worked for years and paid into Social Security in order to have a secure old age.
While we the citizens struggle, members of Congress have paid access to lavish medical care and drugs, as well as huge incomes we pay for. They jet all over the world at our expense, and the rest of us stay at home and try to survive.
Every human being deserves a home, food on the table and decent medical care. For seniors to often have to choose between food and needed medicine or to cut back on one to afford the other is both cruel and inhuman. It is time to stand up to the people in Washington and make our voices heard. Things can be changed, and America can be made great again. I urge my fellow seniors to act.
Adele Ida Walter, Tampa
Baker for mayor | Oct. 9, editorial
Climate and city policies
The Times has now published two full-throated recommendations in the St. Petersburg mayoral race. It’s almost as if the editors were afraid voters would forget the first one. It’s a close race, so I wouldn’t discount a third "reminder" before Election Day. The Times also tells readers that candidate opinions on national issues are meaningless in choosing who should run a city like ours. Only a few days later, however, these same editors warn local leaders not to neglect climate change problems that are already impacting our state and city.
It’s hard to know what the Times editors are thinking, but it seems difficult to reconcile their recommending a climate change skeptic for mayor with their recommendation for necessary action to plan for future climate change issues. Perhaps the Times believes that their candidate only parrots his party line to keep base supporters happy. This would mean that the candidate is either a fool or a liar, neither of which is a positive attribute in a mayor.
When considering the famously "progressive" Times recommendations for elected office, I always try to remember the unbroken editorial support for the famously backward Bilirakis family seat in Congress. This allows me to comfortably ignore Times recommendations.
Bill Adams, St. Petersburg
Take pride in your city
To the people of Tarpon Springs (and I can only speak for where I live) who put out couches and chairs and concrete and things not related to the recent hurricane — you are trying to get something for nothing. The pickup is for vegetation debris as a result of the hurricane. Putting out other junk just makes things harder for the workers to get the job done. Also, you have made one of the main streets into our area look junky and not inviting.
The city of Tarpon Springs is very good about having pickups of furniture and similar items a few times a year. Either wait for that or make your own plans to get this stuff moved to the dump. Take pride in where you live and make our beautiful little town clean again.
Joyce Lindsey, Tarpon Springs
Locker room solution
What started out as a silent and respectful protest against the police killing of unarmed African-Americans has been turned by the present occupant of the White House into a protest against the flag, national anthem, first responders, the military and any other catchall he chooses to include in his desire to stir up the American people with hatred and bigotry. Sadly, many Americans have fallen for this ploy.
A simple solution would be for the teams to have the players remain in the locker room until it was time to actually start to play the game. This would force the bully in chief to find another source for his grandstanding.
Robert W. Schultz, St. Petersburg
Black & white | Oct. 15, Perspective
The genuflecting by white progressives at the feet of Ta-Nehisi Coates, who rhetorically lashes them with the charge of white supremacy, has the distinct appearance of a pathological sadistic-masochistic duet. Coates seems to enjoy heaping the most odious moral condemnation imaginable upon those who gleefully submit to it with a feeling of moral superiority because they are among the enlightened elite.
J. Robert Ross, St. Petersburg
Daily dose of negativity
It is amazing to see the daily, overwhelming liberal bias and negative editorials written about President Donald Trump by the Times editorial board. I can’t open the Times editorials without you criticizing and taking issue with just about everything Trump does — from immigration, health care and foreign affairs to cutting Obama-era job killing regulations.
Is there anything that the editorial board feels that Trump has accomplished? Is there anything positive that he has done in your opinion? If it weren’t so obvious that the Times hates Trump, maybe myself and others might consider your opinions. But rather, we just laugh and dismiss them.
Joseph Martel, Tampa
District shifts start times | Oct. 18
Follow Hillsborough’s lead
How progressive/refreshing to hear that public high schools in Hillsborough County will have a start time of 8:30 a.m. instead of the current 7:30 a.m. Data has suggested for years that a later starting time benefits student achievement.
How disappointing, on the other hand, that Pinellas County school officials sounded the regressive refrain on how they can’t reconsider their 7:05 a.m. starting time because of the bus schedule. Exactly why is that?
Brett A. Hayman, St. Petersburg