Wednesday, June 20, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Monday's letters: Corridors lined with pork

Big landholders support toll idea | Nov. 29

Just a bunch of pork-lined paths

It's no surprise the five large landowners interviewed about the Future Corridors plan are supportive of building the network of toll roads proposed by the plan. They all stand to reap windfall profits from future development of their landholdings — development that would not be feasible unless the public can be hoodwinked into paying for the construction of "highways to nowhere" that would make their isolated rural lands more accessible.

Gov. Charlie Crist shelved the Future Corridors plan because the highways could not be justified on the basis of meeting transportation needs. The plan is now being dusted off by Gov. Rick Scott not to meet transportation needs but to spur economic development. In other words, to promote more of the expensive sprawl and reckless speculation by developers and Realtors that have made Florida the economic disaster it is today.

The most revealing facet of this article? Not the landowners who were chosen to be interviewed, but those who weren't. For example, JD Alexander of Florida Polytechnic fame, whose ranch might increase in development potential a thousandfold if the so-called Heartland segment is built. That's the highway with the most juice behind it, thanks to an appropriation the Legislature approved this year to fund initial design.

Future Corridors is not about economic development to benefit the people of Florida; it's about using the taxpayers to bankroll infrastructure development that will benefit those pulling the strings in Tallahassee. It is pork barrel spending of epic proportions.

Eugene Kelly, Brooksville

Bondi blasts health law | Nov. 29

Time to move on

The Florida attorney general is still speaking out against the health care law that has been found constitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court. I respect that she may have a personal opinion about the law. No matter what her personal opinion, is it is her obligation to uphold the law of the land. It is time to move on and make sure the law is effective in helping as many people as possible.

As we go along we will see the problems and Congress will have the opportunity to deal with them. As a young college student, I happened to be present when Medicare passed the Senate with many of the same arguments we hear today about the new health care law.

Louis Kwall, Clearwater

Bondi another self-promoter

The day Pam Bondi was sworn in as Florida's attorney general it was obvious she had another office in mind before she even started her elected duties. She started at that time to speak in "headline-ese."

Was she already planning on being our next governor or senator? Whatever it was, look for more headlines in boldface whenever her name is mentioned. Just what Florida needs: another self-promoting politician.

Mary Jane Miller, Bayonet Point

There's help available

Pam Bondi, our esteemed state attorney general, seems to be depressed over the last election. But the good news is that I think depression is covered under Obamacare.

Susan Nichols, St. Petersburg

Fixing bad behavior isn't done by bellowing Nov. 29, commentary

Parental guidance required

We don't know the detailed dynamics of this family, but the crucial phrases are "the oldest (adult child) is 40" and "you seem to treat your mother like a cess-pit."

Then David Brooks goes on for seven paragraphs about hidden springs, alternative good behavior, luring people toward success, positive rewards, promise of admiration, picking out a small goal — good grief, it sounded like a handbook for preschoolers that would never end.

How many hours, weeks, months does the average decent parent spend during a child's lifetime loving, guiding, mentoring, supporting, cheerleading, helping, listening?

Nick Crews' only mistake was that he didn't send his "bellowing" message to his children 20 years ago.

Judy Prescott, Palm Harbor

Talk, no action as 'cliff' looms | Nov. 29

Foreign aid needs trimming

As I sit here reading, yet again, about politicians wanting to cut Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security in an effort to reduce government spending, I continue to wonder why there is never any discussion of cutting the foreign aid we so easily send to other countries. Many of those countries do not support us; why do we support them?

This is a great example of the "giveaway" programs that need to be slashed before our elected politicians cut programs that many of us have contributed to in the form of payroll taxes. As a senior citizen who recently became eligible for both Social Security and Medicare, programs that I was forced to pay into for 45 years, I resent the fact that I must fight for every penny I get back while we continue to give large amount of funds to foreign counties.

Jim Rechtin, Tampa

Political reality and Rice | Nov. 30, editorial

Yes to Palin, but no to Rice?

Sens. John McCain, Kelly Ayotte, Lindsey Graham and Susan Collins question Susan Rice's ability to lead the State Department. These same senators had no problem with Sarah Palin being a heartbeat away from becoming "the leader of the free world."

Randy Nelson, Tampa

Monkey may end up in Dade City zoo Nov. 27

He's Tampa Bay's monkey

I was disappointed to hear our mystery monkey was likely going to Dade City instead of finding a home right here in Tampa Bay. I thought maybe someone with the means might step up and donate the necessary funds to the Suncoast Primate Sanctuary, for example.

Greater still, however, was my disappointment over the monkey's new name. Why does he need to be rebranded? His name could have stayed "Mystery Monkey" just as easily. Or, if he was to be renamed, why not "Magic Mike"? That way even if he moves, he'd take Tampa Bay with him.

Rebecca Hendricks, Clearwater


Wednesday’s letters: Charters and traditional public schools each have their place

Public school as public good | Letter, June 17Both kinds of schools can workAs a mother and grandmother of children raised in both traditional public and charter schools in Pinellas County (and a 25-year supporting-services employee for public sc...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Tuesday’s letters: Keep programs that fight AIDS

For author Biden, it’s a father’s gift | June 6Keep programs that fight AIDSAfter former Vice President Joe Biden’s recent visit to St. Petersburg, I noticed an article that he co-wrote with former Sen. Bill Frist. It reminded everyone about the ...
Published: 06/18/18
Updated: 06/19/18

Is anyone watching the money?Hernando County’s budget shortfall is ever changing going from $6 million to $11.5 million to $14 million to what is assumed a final number of $12.6 million. Who knows the budget shortfall could change again.Who’s watchi...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

Re: County OKs solar zones | June 8Plea ignored at solar plant hearingThe Pasco County Commission on June 5 voted to identify a utility-sized solar electric plant as a "special exception" use on agricultural-zoned land in Pasco County. What thi...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

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: 06/18/18

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