A pledge worth taking: no more pledges | July 24, editorial
Try these two pledges on for size
Making a pledge is not the problem. Making pledges to the partisan wings of a party or special interest groups is.
Pledging is a problem indicative of a greater issue: our electoral system. To get the nomination a candidate must appeal to the extremes of his or her party. To win the election, the candidate must jump to the middle, leaving the discerning voter to guess who the candidate really is.
As far as pledging goes, here are two all national candidates should make. They will earn my vote regardless of what else they stand for.
Pledge to put yourself in the same health care system you legislate for me. Pledge to put yourself in the same retirement system you legislate for me. Then talk to me about what "we" should do about Social Security and health care.
Len Keller, Seminole
Did firm qualify for deal? | July 27
Firm committed to Tampa
PricewaterhouseCoopers announced Monday that our firm had signed a long-term lease with MetLife for a new, $78 million office building at Tampa's MetWest International site. As part of this agreement, PwC was offered generous local incentives in Tampa should we build the building, and as a result, preserve more than 1,600 jobs currently in the Tampa area and potentially add 200 more jobs. This deal is a win-win for all parties involved — Tampa taxpayers, the greater Tampa business community, and PwC and its current and future employees in Tampa. We very much value the business climate in Tampa, the exceptional talent pool that exists in the area, and the support we receive from the community.
I do wish to clarify comments I made earlier this week to the Times. PwC has openly communicated to the Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corp. that when it originally evaluated potential sites for the firm's new Enterprise Solutions Center, the firm was considering either a short-term lease renewal in the existing building in Tampa or constructing a building in Tampa with a long-term lease commitment. Although we did not contemplate an immediate move of 2,000 jobs out of Tampa, a short-term lease arrangement inherently leaves open the long-term question as to where our Enterprise Solutions Center would be located.
Instead, our decision to invest in a new building demonstrates a sustained, long-term commitment to the Tampa area. PwC was forthright and consistent in its communications with Florida's state and local economic development officials throughout this process, and so now we are very much looking forward to our partnership with the greater Tampa community and to maintaining and potentially increasing our work force in Tampa.
Mario de Armas, PwC Florida market managing partner, Tampa
A bigoted response
Please consider naming Rep. Dennis Ross, R-Fla., as your next "Loser of the Week." As the world watched with horror at the terrorism unfolding in Norway, Ross tweeted: "Our thoughts and prayers go out to a steadfast ally and friend — the Norwegian people. We stand with you against Islamic terror."
We later found out the suspected gunman is an anti-Islam Christian fundamentalist. Ross' willingness to automatically assume the perpetrator was a Muslim speaks volumes about his anti-Islam religious bigotry. Shame on him and his ignorance.
Doug Tudor, Riverview
Threat to world peace
No one can condone what happened in Norway, but I believe this disturbed person has a point when he says the influx of Muslims in Norway and throughout the world is going to be — if it is not already — the biggest threat to world peace.
Russell Montminy, Spring Hill
Extremists drive nation to the brink July 26, editorial
Wrong side labeled extreme
It would seem that this editorial placed the "extremist" label on the wrong side. When President Barack Obama presented "his plan," a $3.7 trillion 2012 budget, the Senate voted unanimously, 97-0, against it. Looks like the "outsider" or "extremist" is Obama, who is standing in the way of Congress doing its job.
John Rooks, Clearwater
Your view on what constitutes "extremists" is itself extreme. The Democrats had control of both houses of Congress and the presidency from the time Barack Obama was inaugurated until newly elected representatives were installed this year. In all that time Obama pushed through one piece of extreme legislation after another — all of which cost an astonishing amount of taxpayer money.
Where was your concern when a majority of the American people were against the health care legislation and the stimulus? Where was your concern when the president ignored the recommendation of his own debt commission? Where was your concern when the Democratic Congress didn't produce a budget for 21/2 years?
Have you forgotten how the Democrats were overwhelmingly defeated in the 2010 elections? Now you want your readers to believe after all this time of uncontrolled spending and the creation of unprecedented debt that the Republicans are the "extremists." It is the president's and your progressive agenda that is extreme.
Charles H. Heist, Clearwater
Start with them
If the debt problem is not resolved and the Treasury must pick and choose whom it will fund, its first choice for nonpayment should be Congress and White House.
Ron Bilby, Clearwater
Lisa Benson cartoon | July 23
Not what was promised
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Lisa Benson's political cartoon in sums up the current state of the U.S. economy.
Businesses are in the jaws of Obamanomics with an ineffective stimulus plan leading to escalating national debt, a health care plan with uncertain impact, new business regulations and the president's never-ending quest to raise taxes on those who could potentially help grow the economy.
Is it any wonder that job growth and gross domestic product are at a virtual standstill over two years after the Great Recession ended? The administration's policies have, according to several business leaders, "thrown a wet blanket" over the U.S. economy. This is not the promised change that brought him into office.
Joe Wareham, Tierra Verde