Monday, June 18, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Friday's letters: Gingrich focusing on U.S. energy

Power up domestic jobs | March 11, commentary

Gingrich focusing on U.S. energy

It appears that Al Hoffman doesn't follow the campaign of Newt Gingrich, whose focus is on energy independence for our country.

While I agree with Hoffman's assessment of the need for jobs here in the United States, and the obvious job openings with the building of the Keystone pipeline and more offshore drilling, I'm surprised that he generalizes that all the Republican presidential candidates are unaware of this important and obvious opportunity for our country to become energy independent, create jobs and reduce our deficit.

He also failed to mention the vast oil reserves of the Bakken shale oil fields here in the United States and how important they can be to bolstering our economy.

Hoffman said "neither the president nor other presidential candidates are stressing this point." Not true. Gingrich has said on many occasions that $2.50 a gallon for gas is very possible and energy independence can be achieved.

Really, all we need is a strong president who will stand up to the environmentalists and not worry about getting votes in the next election.

Carmen LaBianca, Largo

Power up domestic jobs March 11, commentary

Focus on alternatives

According to Al Hoffman, we should stop destroying other nations' environments and start destroying our own. Now the question is: Whose backyard do we start doing this in? Yours? Mine? The accompanying photo of the trans-Alaska pipeline is not what I want to see when I walk out my door or go to a park or preserve.

Why can't we "power up domestic jobs" through the development of alternative and renewable resources? I hope that in my lifetime the use of fossil fuels will be in the display next to buggy whips at the museum.

T.W. Funari, St. Petersburg

It's Obama's strategy

Al Hoffman asserts that the best way to improve our energy security, create jobs and reduce the deficit is to expedite expansion of all forms of domestic energy (fossil fuels, nuclear, wind and solar). He goes on to say that he will vote for the presidential candidate who advocates policy changes that will replace foreign oil with domestic energy within the next decade.

Hoffman must not have been paying attention during President Barack Obama's most recent State of the Union address, in which the president advocated eliminating fossil fuel subsidies as part of an "all of the above" energy policy. Of course that can only be done by Congress, and congressional Republicans automatically oppose anything Obama supports.

Where are the free-market capitalists among Republicans? Why aren't they clamoring for the elimination of all forms of subsidies for all forms of energy? Ending such corporate welfare would reduce the deficit and stimulate the development of alternative domestic energy sources, thus creating jobs and improving our energy security.

Thomas Eppes, Thonotosassa

Gas prices

Diversify energy sources

As a geologist, I must speak out concerning the price of gasoline and the agitating efforts of those who know so little about the process of petroleum production. It is foolish on the part of the voting public to fall prey to the ranting of legislators owned by the oil industry who know very little about what is going on other than accepting political contributions.

Immediate drilling of more wells, particularly in environmentally sensitive areas, will accomplish very little in terms of lowering the price of gasoline at the pump. Many wells will need to be successful and will need to connect to a large network of delivery pipes laid on the sea bottom. This process will take perhaps 10 years. There will be no drop in the price of gasoline tomorrow.

At the same time, the discovery of large quantities of natural gas will be of benefit in potentially lowering or, at least, stabilizing the price of gasoline. It is possible to use the natural gas so developed, with facility modification, in power generation plants. This would make petroleum more readily available for other uses. Natural gas is also a cleaner burn than either oil or coal.

There is a lot of politically motivated and not scientific- or economics-based criticism directed at the Obama administration. Yet its approach to energy diversification is best. Demand a diversified energy program.

John C. Miller, Tampa

Speculators to blame

The free-market Republicans are hollering at President Barack Obama for failing to do something about rising gas prices. Prices are rising primarily because of free-market speculators worrying about turmoil in the Mideast. The same thing happened toward the end of George W. Bush's second term, and conservatives rushed to defend Bush. They can't have it both ways.

Mark Brandt, Dunedin

Prices not out of line

Like everyone else, I am concerned about the price of gasoline, but consider the following:

In 1955, gasoline was about 29 cents per gallon, the typical four-door family sedan got around 14 miles per gallon and the average worker made about $2 per hour.

To drive his 1955 sedan for 1,000 miles would have taken 71 gallons of gas that cost $20 or 10 hours of labor.

In 2012, gasoline is around $3.85 per gallon, the typical four-door sedan gets around 27 miles per gallon and the same worker is making about $15 per hour.

That same 1,000-mile trip would take 37 gallons of gasoline at a cost of $142 or about 9.5 hours of labor.

Leonard C. Silva, St. Petersburg

Florida Legislature

Needless meddling

The Florida Legislature has shown this session a complete lack of focus on important issues while mishandling our money and meddling in social issues.

Repeated efforts to redefine and legislate reproductive rights and other initiatives pander to a political base in a political year. These misguided steps come at the expense of progress on consumer protection, foreclosure fraud, failing schools and the environment.

The crowning achievement of this session: the obsequious spectacle of our representatives lining up to vote for JD Alexander's roadway and a new independent Polk County University while slashing funding for every other state university.

This Legislature's conservatism does not conserve privacy, rights or money. It's shameful; we can do much better.

Edward Miller, Tampa


Monday’s letters: Skip those plastic bags and save the environment

To save our seas, overcome congressional apathy | Column, June 16Do your part and skip plastic bagsEvery day we read about the shame of our landfills and oceans filling up with plastic bags, yet most people don’t care. My wife and I always carry ...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18

White House defends splitting up families as ‘biblical’ | June 15The suffering of the childrenI am a mother and attorney with more than 20 years of practice living in Tampa. For the past three years, I worked as a magistrate in a Unified Family C...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18

Saturday’s letters: Community-based care requires community involvement

Fix foster care, and do it quickly | Editorial, June 15Involve the community itselfWhile the detailed article about the scathing state review of Hillsborough County’s foster care problems touched on leadership, a critical point was not addressed....
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18

Friday’s letters: Freight trains are infrastructure that works in Tampa Bay

Railroads are infrastructure that worksFreight trains carry the loadCentral Florida is our state’s fastest-growing region. We’re on track to outpace South Florida’s growth 2-to-1 over the next several years. Great news for our local economy, but it n...
Published: 06/12/18
Updated: 06/15/18

Thursday’s letters: Charter schools aren’t the enemy

Don’t plug your ears when schools ask for tax | May 20, columnCharter schools aren’t the enemyAs an educator, I am astounded when I hear claims from school board members that charter schools take away funding from the local public school system. ...
Published: 06/12/18
Updated: 06/14/18

Wednesday’s letters: Trump’s words insult our Canadian visitors

Trade disputes torpedo G-7 summit | June 10Canadian visitors are owed apologyLike many Pinellas County residents, I’m pleased that we receive thousands of Canadian "snow birds" as part-year residents. Not only do they enhance our economy, but by ...
Published: 06/11/18
Updated: 06/13/18

Hernando Letters to the Editor for June 15

Opinion: Commissioners arrogant and incompetentMy wife and I live in Hernando County. As such, we are represented by a Board of County Commissioners where all the members manifest two common traits. Those traits are arrogance and incompetence.The arr...
Published: 06/11/18
Updated: 06/12/18

Tuesday’s letters: Fewer guns would reduce suicides

U.S. under suicide watch | June 8Fewer guns mean fewer suicidesIt is a fact that deserves more attention, but got only one sentence in the article about the U.S. "suicide watch:" "The most common method used across all groups was firearms." I spe...
Published: 06/11/18
Updated: 06/12/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for June 15

New group to address real women’s issuesLast Saturday our Congressman Gus Bilirakis sponsored a "Woman’s Summit" at East Lake High School that was supposed to deal with women’s issues. Some topics covered were gardening, weight loss and quilting.Mayb...
Published: 06/11/18

Monday’s letters: Bring back the ferry, kick-start transit

Cross bay, but who’ll pay? | June 8Ferry could be a gateway to transitIt’s great news that St. Petersburg is committed to bringing back the world class cross bay ferry service. What a common-sense and practical thing to do in order to ease us int...
Published: 06/08/18
Updated: 06/11/18