Thursday, April 19, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Letters: Small government? Start with Congress

Congress should shrink itself

"Small government" is a movement that I have grown to hate. One segment of the ruling class has made this their mantra for moving forward. There are elements of the government that need shrinking but this mantra does not go far enough.

Those espousing "small government" are applying the term only to taxpayers — reducing the types and amounts of services that citizens (needy or not) may be eligible for by today's standards and rules.

These same folks are not applying the term to themselves. In four areas, Congress avails itself of higher benefits than the private sector. Congress enjoys: Pension benefits above those available to the private sector; lower health insurance costs by receiving roughly 75 percent of the premium costs from government funds; enrollment in the Thrift Savings Plan, similar to a 401K; and a higher initial Social Security benefit thanks to their higher salaries.

Congress was allowed to exclude itself from Obamacare. Add in higher life insurance benefits, more paid sick leave, and higher wages, the total comes to 34 percent higher wages than the private sector and 70 percent better benefits for health coverage, according to the Cato Institute. Many staff members and aides earn more than $100,000 per year, a number that is almost double the median of U.S. private sector workers.

Until Congress talks about "small government" not only for citizens but for themselves, I will continue to question its credibility and sincerity. The ruling class (read both parties here) has raised itself to a level that smacks of elitism.

Robert Widmar, Weeki Wachee

Nugent, tea party are hypocrites

On Oct. 2, two days after the government shutdown, U.S. Rep. Richard Nugent attended a photo opportunity at the World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. with World War II veterans and U.S. Rep. Michelle Bachmann of Minnesota. Surprisingly, Mr. Nugent voted to defund our government which closed this very prestigious memorial. Has Washington lost its integrity?

Later, he expressed his concern about the defunding of Head Start and the aviation support facility in Brooksville both programs in Hernando County. If Mr. Nugent was so concerned, why did he vote against funding our government?

The tea party is the party of deception and hypocrisy. Mr. Nugent certainly doesn't represent a majority of people of Hernando County.

Vito J. Delgorio Sr., Spring Hill

Liberal DeWitt misses the mark

It appears that columnist Dan DeWitt has a personal vendetta against those who do not agree with his own politics. His criticism of tea party member Hamilton Hanson's ideas about how this county can save money is equivocated to nuttiness and he criticizes others such as U.S. Rep. Rich Nugent as fringe.

This is so typical of the liberal left politics: Point fingers; name call, and don't dare tell the truth about the entire situation. Mr. DeWitt appears to have sipped a bit too much from the Obama Kool-Aid, and it shows in his rhetoric.

Don't criticize those taking an active, solid, consistent stance for what they believe in. If things were going great in this county, and country for that matter, our property taxes and insurance wouldn't be increasing, nor would there be a high level of unemployment.

Lori Eley, Spring Hill

Ideas on disabled just plain goofy

Hamilton Hanson's ideas are clownish and having people of the Glenn Beck fan club show up at every County Commission meeting makes me sick. Hanson told me all disabled people should go back in to group homes

The greatest priority should be given to implementation of community-based services that will enable individuals with disabilities to achieve their greatest potential for independent and productive living, enabling them to live in their own home in their communities.

David Philipsen, Weeki Wachee

Pit bull needs to be leashed

Last week, my husband was walking our leashed dogs when a brown and white pit bull ran toward them and grabbed hold of one of our dogs.

Our pet had to have 20 stitches to the side of her neck and had two bite wound on her abdomen, and my husband was bitten as well.

Our dog had to have emergency surgery costing $500 and my husband required a tetanus shot and will need to receive a series of rabies vaccines.

I cannot thank my kind, compassionate, caring neighbors who never budged from their homes to help. And, to the dog's owner, if that pit bull of yours comes on my lawn unleashed, Spring Hill will have one less pit bull. In case the owner doesn't know it, or doesn't care, there is a leash law.

Margaret Berry, Spring Hill


Thursday’s letters: Gun research can save lives

Gun ownershipCommon ground: Find the factsThere are many areas in the current debate about guns and gun ownership where both sides must agree to disagree. But there is one area where common ground ought to exist. That concerns the need for continuing...
Published: 04/18/18

Wednesday’s letters:

Poverty and plenty in bay area | April 7, editorialStruggling poor are not a priorityI commend your newspaper for continuing to produce real and relevant news, particularly the recent editorial pointing out that a prospering Tampa Bay should not ...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18

Hernando Letters to the Editor for April 20

Bar Association celebrates Law WeekPresident Dwight D. Eisenhower proclaimed May 1, 1958, as the first Law Day to mark the nation’s commitment to the rule of law. Every year on this day, we reflect on the significance of the rule of law and rededicat...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18

Tuesday’s letters: Stop cooperating with ICE

Sheriff’s ICE policy blasted | April 10Pinellas should end partnership with ICEPinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri recently participated in a community conversation on his controversial agreement with ICE to voluntarily detain immigrants in the...
Published: 04/16/18

Sunday’s letters: The future of oyster production

Shell game | April 15Future of oyster productionThanks to Laura Reiley for an excellent synopsis of the current state of oyster production in Florida. The collapse of the Apalachicola oyster fishery is merely the latest example of the demise of a...
Published: 04/14/18

Monday’s letters: Public education is foundation of the nation

Voters beware of ballot deceptionApril 13, commentarySchools’ role underminedIt was with great pain that I read (not for the first time) that we must be aware of "ballot deception." Public schools were founded to make sure that future generations of ...
Published: 04/13/18

Saturday’s letters: Health Department should butt out

Judge: Grow pot, Mr. Redner | April 12Health officials should butt outThe Times reports that the Florida Department of Health filed an appeal to the decision allowing a man who is a Stage 4 lung cancer survivor to grow pot in his backyard for his ...
Published: 04/11/18
Updated: 04/13/18

Friday’s letters: Open and shut: Enforce the law

Sheriff’s ICE aid policy blasted | April 10Open and shut: Enforce the lawPeople and institutions that insist on the using the euphemism "undocumented immigrant" do nothing but affirm their lack of objectivity by using such a phrase to support an ...
Published: 04/11/18
Updated: 04/12/18

Thursday’s letters: Focus on offender, not weapon

Use data to curb gun deaths | April 8, commentaryFocus on offenders, not weaponsThis article tiptoes around the issue: human violence. The authors point out that automobile manufactures were pressured by regulation and law to make automobile coll...
Published: 04/11/18

Wednesday’s letters: One county’s water affects us all

Sprawl seems a concern until Tampa land use lawyer appears | April 9Water impactsspan county linesThough I live in Pinellas County, I have followed the discussion on land use decisions made by Hillsborough County. Hillsborough’s decisions, perhap...
Published: 04/10/18