Friday, February 23, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Friday's letters: Cash is corroding our democracy

Buying the election? | Oct. 10, commentary

Cash is corroding democracy

I am upset about the obscene amounts of money that are being spent to win an election. Most people running for local offices have to gather large amounts of money to even have a chance to win. Members of the House of Representatives never quit running. They are forced to continue collections after one race because the campaign is never really over.

In the presidential election, the candidates have outrageous war chests of hundreds of millions of dollars. As I taxpayer and property owner, I resent this waste of money. Wouldn't it be better spent helping the homeless and fighting hunger? Just think what good that money could do if it was not spent on TV ads, the ads that come in the mail and the personal phone calls.

What if the campaign time was cut down to, say, three or four months? With television, newspapers and the Internet, there is no need for spending so much money running two or even three years before the actual election.

Dianne Madinger, Tampa

Charges expected in I-75 pileup | Oct. 7

Driver education needed

Isn't it time for a campaign to encourage commonsense driving? Pileups like the one that happened last week are almost inexcusable. It seems that so many people have the need to get someplace before someone else does. In addition to the distracted and rude drivers, people don't pay attention to the conditions and circumstances.

On highways with speeds of 50 mph or above, there is almost no reason to use your brakes unless you are following too close. If you leave a safe distance between you and the car ahead, all you have to do is take your foot off the gas pedal. A safe distance allows you to see possible problems ahead and slow down.

Marilyn Schroeder, Clearwater

Campaign 2012

Fiscally unsound

Mitt Romney states unequivocally that he will not cut defense spending and, in fact, will increase it to 4 percent of GDP. This is an astonishing move from a politician who calls himself a fiscal conservative. A true fiscal conservative would analyze needs and set spending priorities accordingly.

Either Romney is uninformed, or he chooses to ignore that military spending is already out of hand. We have more than adequate military muscle to take out any foreseeable foe.

John Darovec, Bradenton

Civilian Conservation Corps

Renew jobs program

From 1933 to 1942, the Civilian Conservation Corps demonstrated that there was no conflict between preserving the environment and creating jobs. It generated 3.5 million jobs.

There is now a bill in Congress, HR 494, to re-establish the CCC. This job-creation program re-establishes CCC to put to work unemployed and underemployed civilians and military veterans on useful public works projects aimed at safeguarding natural resources and developing new transportation and infrastructure.

Only two Florida members of Congress, Reps. Kathy Castor and Alcee Hastings, have co-sponsored this bill. Contact your member of Congress to get him or her on the ball or vote for a candidate who will co-sponsor HR 494. The bill will be renumbered early in the next session in January.

Jay Alexander, St. Petersburg

Who will stop nuclear plant? | Sept. 16, editorial

Cost containment

The Times opposes the current system for financing new clean nuclear energy. Interestingly, it also opposes every constitutional amendment on the ballot that would reduce taxes.

The common thread in these positions is that we consumers would pay more under the Times' views. It's easy to rail against any costs for power plants when the target is a utility. But the Times has no problem defending government and the higher taxes that facilitate its bloat.

We need clean, emission-free nuclear energy as much as we need government services. The air breathed by our children is worth the cost. The current system for financing nuclear energy allows the costs to be paid as they are incurred so we don't have to pay unnecessary interest on debt.

Jerry Paul, Venice

Tampa Tribune sells for $9.5M | Oct. 9

Garage sale price

What does it say about the importance of journalism and factual information in our society when a newspaper with a storied history dating back to 1895 is jettisoned by one corporate owner to improve its balance sheet and then snapped up by another looking to turn a quick buck?

Since our country's founding, newspapers have acted as watchdogs on government and others in our society. But it seems that in these days of "the facts don't matter" and of severe apathy and indifference as to what is happening in Tallahassee and Washington, this garage sale of the Tribune is a statement that, at least in the "free market," newspapers have no value.

When the newspapers disappear, you'll see what kind of a rotten, corrupt world we end up with.

Gary Gibbons, Tampa

State seeks new plate | Oct. 9

We're tapped out

Our state wants to collect and spend $31 million more of the taxpayers' money to change our state license plates so they can collect more money from the taxpayers from tolls and red-light cameras. And this is being done to stop the taxpayers from "losing" $7 million a year.

When are you guys going to get the message: We don't have any more money to give you.

Chet Meisner, Lutz

Participation problem | Oct. 11, letter

Weekend voting

The high voter turnout in Venezuela is due to the country holding its election on the weekend. Many countries around the world hold their elections on weekends, and similarly have higher turnouts than the United States.

Chris Landrum, Brandon


Saturday’s letters: Preserve home rule in Florida

LegislaturePreserve home rule in FloridaOn behalf of the members of Business Watch, a trade association for government contractors, I would like to voice our dismay over the Legislature’s wholesale attack on home rule. As local government contractors...
Published: 02/23/18

Thursday’s letters: Second Amendment is outdated

Second AmendmentCongress can act on firearmsThe Second Amendment is outdated, since it is predicated on the need for a "well regulated militia." Militias are defined as civilian soldiers trained under the command of competent military leadership. The...
Published: 02/20/18
Updated: 02/22/18

Wednesday’s letters:

House Bill 21Opioid proposal merits supportIn 2016, Florida recorded 952 heroin-related and 1,390 fentanyl-related deaths. Four in five new heroin users began by misusing prescription pain medications, also known as opioids. Despite the widespread op...
Published: 02/20/18

Hernando Letter to the Editor for Feb. 23

Re: Hernando business leaders push to loosen development rules | Feb. 9; Re: Deny Brooksville mine expansion, planning commissioners say | Feb. 16Wish to register my opposition to both the draft of the new Hernando County Comprehensive Plan that elim...
Published: 02/20/18

Tuesday’s letters: Making politics personal is one way toward reasonable gun control

The Parkland shootingMake gun politics personalAs an educator of 32 years, it encourages me to see our young people engaged after the horror at Stoneman Douglas High School. The tragedy at Parkland has awakened the sleeping giant that is the millenni...
Published: 02/19/18

Sunday’s letters: Congress must act on firearms

Deadly toll: 17 | Feb. 15Congress must act on firearmsIt’s time for Congress to be counted.The failure of Congress to act to: (1) limit access to assault rifles and (2) require meaningful background checks for all gun purchases is appalling.Surel...
Published: 02/17/18

Monday’s letters: Call it by its name: terrorism

Deadly toll: 17 | Feb. 15Call it whatit is: terrorismLet’s just call it what it is. It’s terrorism. No school in the country is immune. They all have procedures for sheltering in place or emergency evacuation from a shooter. It’s prudent to be pr...
Published: 02/16/18

Saturday’s letters: Payoff to porn star not front-page news?

Lawyer: I personally paid porn star | Feb. 14Where we’re at: This is 4A newsOnly under the Trump presidency does a story about the president’s lawyer paying off a porn star to cover up an affair with the president show up on page 4A. Never mind t...
Published: 02/16/18

Friday’s letters: Water quality too important to gamble on

State to update water rules | Feb. 10Don’t gamble with water safetyI wondered whether this front-page article was an early April Fool’s joke. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection "updated" its pollution regulations in 2016, with str...
Published: 02/15/18

Thursday’s letters: Bill protects pharmacy customers

House Bill 351Bill protects pharmacy customersWe all need the protections provided in Florida House Bill 351 to ensure pharmacy benefit managers, or PBMs, are transparently operating with patients. Currently, PBMs are not regulated by the state and o...
Published: 02/14/18