Thursday, December 14, 2017
Letters To The Editor

Thursday's letters: Basic arithmetic trumps rhetoric

Debt numbers are big; real problem is less so | Jan. 9, commentary

Basic arithmetic trumps rhetoric

This is an article that every Democrat and Republican voter should read before deciding whom to vote for to be president. And it does not require any specific education to understand — just common sense.

As the authors state, basic arithmetic can liberate us from silly rhetoric, and that is what I find is the basis today for pronouncements from both political parties. The "gut" of this excellent article is expressed in this statement: "It is counterproductive to balance the budget by reducing growth-enhancing investments in math and science education, road and bridge repairs, or broadband capacity."

If growth-enhancing investments are made with the agreement of both political parties, even though the debt is not substantially reduced each year, our future is not to be feared; it is a future to look forward to. Basic arithmetic is all you need to know.

Donald W. Chandler, Clearwater

Debt numbers are big; real problem is less so Jan. 9, commentary

Nation saddled with debt

Debt as a percentage of GDP is now just over 100 percent. The authors use a "conservative estimate" of 2 percent future GDP growth rate to aid their argument that debt is insignificant, and that we should continue to create more debt (print money out of thin air) to pay down the debt as well as to fund more education and infrastructure projects.

But a society saturated in debt cannot grow. Just look at Greece, Italy, Spain and other European nations whose debt as a percentage of GDP is over 100 percent.

The fact is that globalism has pillaged our economy, and what we are left with is a sand castle economy that cannot withstand the piling on of more long-term debt for minor short-term gains.

Alex Vann, Brooksville

FBI says man planned terror | Jan. 10

Betrayal of Islamic ideals

As a Muslim American, I am saddened to hear the news of the arrest of Sami Osmakac, who was accused plotting terrorist attacks in Tampa. What makes me sad is not his arrest, but him attributing his acts to Islam. In a video, he claimed that Muslim blood is more valuable than that of people who do not believe in Islam.

He should deeply reflect on Koran, which while promoting the sanctity of life — "whosoever killed a person, it shall be if he had killed the entire mankind; and whoso saved a life, it shall be if he had saved the entire mankind" — does not differentiate between Muslim and non-Muslim blood.

He has not only been disloyal to his country, but with the charge that he planned to act against the Koranic instruction to Muslims not to create disorder in the Earth, he has also been disloyal to his faith.

Nasir Ahmad, M.D., Tinton Falls, N.J.

Stand up for tax fairness | Jan. 8, editorial

Tax laws need updating

It's sad that our governor and many in the Legislature think that enforcing the "use tax" portion of the sales and use tax law is a new tax. It's been a complement to the sales tax since 1950. It levels the playing field for in-state businesses with out-of-state businesses that sell to customers here.

The problem is that we have tax laws that haven't been updated to reflect changing times. When the use tax was enacted, personal computers didn't exist, the Internet didn't exist, and most people paid with cash.

We need a Legislature willing to update our tax code and collection laws to the 21st century. We need a Legislature willing to look at all the special exemptions in the sales and use tax law and ask themselves if these exemptions are in the best interests of all citizens of the state. We need a Legislature to actually do its job and not just take easy, perceived fixes such as expanding gambling and cutting, cutting, cutting.

Randy Eisenberg, Valrico

My nightmare at Guantanamo Jan. 10, commentary

Apology is in order

We have seen others who were finally released after years at Guantanamo. Releasing them earlier might have made someone look "soft on terrorism." We know that some were turned in by their neighbors who held a grudge against them or wanted their land. We can do little to replace their lost years.

However, I am concerned that Mitt Romney brags in his commercials that he would never apologize for America. Assuming that everything in this column is true, wouldn't a simple apology from America be appropriate? Perhaps the least we could do?

Refusing to ever apologize smacks of arrogance, a policy more appropriate for the Roman Empire than a country founded on freedom.

Peter S. Cohoon, Tampa

Keep endgame in mind with Rays Jan. 10, John Romano column

Keep the Rays in Pinellas

I live in Tampa, but Pinellas County needs a win on the new stadium location. This market is too small to alienate the Rays' best and longest-serving fans.

Put the stadium in Pinellas between I-275 and Gandy Boulevard and help St. Petersburg to annex the area and everybody wins. The edges of downtown Tampa are no better or safer than the current Tropicana site. The fairgrounds are far for everyone. Ask the Bucs if a Tampa location is the magic bullet for attendance.

St. Petersburg/Pinellas built it and the Rays came. Now the Rays are getting all grown up and need their space, but not too much and not too far away. This is a family game.

David Reddy, Tampa

Muslim speaker upsets critic | Jan. 10

Religion doesn't belong

David Caton has a point. If the public school system allows a Muslim leader to speak at a high school, then there should be equal time to counter this message.

But why are we having representatives of religions come to any public school? Last I heard we have a separation of church and state.

Irmgard Knorr, Sun City Center

Comments

Friday’s letters: Put yourself in a business owner’s shoes

GOP plan favors owners | Dec. 11Perils of small business ownersI wonder if the author of this article has even a clue about owning a business. Businessmen — especially small business owners — risk it all. They risk their savings, their car, their...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Thursday’s letters: Trump’s values hardly admirable

Finally, a president who cares | Dec. 13, letterTrump’s values hardly admirableThe letter writer is happy to have someone in the White House who "truly cares about our country’s business" and is "unafraid … of mentioning God and religious values....
Published: 12/13/17

Wednesday’s letters: Proposal would restore Florida Forever funding

Florida ForeverPlan boosts land protectionMost of us thought funding for land conservation in Florida would be restored when we voted the Water and Land Conservation Amendment (Amendment 1) into law in 2014. It passed easily, with 75 percent of voter...
Published: 12/11/17
Updated: 12/12/17

Tuesday’s letters: Writer should look to his own mistakes

Is anyone ever wrong anymore? | Dec. 8Writer should look to own errorsIn Mitch Daniels’ article about people who have been wrong, he finishes with the statement that our lives would be greatly improved with more people saying, "I was wrong."He mi...
Published: 12/08/17
Updated: 12/11/17

Monday’s letters: Don’t drill in Arctic refuge

Arctic National Wildlife RefugeStop plan to drill for oil in refugeOur nation faces yet another effort to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge reserve to oil and gas drilling. Drilling in the Arctic simply doesn’t make sound financial sense. W...
Published: 12/08/17

Sunday’s letters: Tax bill puts U.S. on right course

The GOP’s regressive tax plans | Dec. 5, editorialTax bill puts U.S. on right courseThe Times is already crying wolf over the new tax cuts, claiming that the new laws "could" result an increase in the national debt of $1.5 trillion over the next ...
Published: 12/07/17

Pasco letters to the editor for Dec. 15

Re: Helping Others Fulfills our purpose here on Earth | Nov. 17 guest columnThe good doctor acknowledges a CreatorThank you for publishing Dr. Rao Musunuru’s guest column. As Congressman Gus Bilirakis said in the Congressional Record, this good d...
Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/13/17

Saturday’s letters: Don’t inject political money into churches

Tax billKeep political cash out of pulpitA provision buried in the 429-page House tax bill, Section 5201, nullifies the Johnson Amendment, which protects houses of worship from partisan politics by prohibiting them from endorsing or opposing politica...
Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/07/17

Friday’s letters: Most unpopular tax bill ever

Tax bill clears Senate | Dec. 3The most unpopular tax bill ever"Democracy dies in darkness" is the motto of the Washington Post. At 2 a.m. on the dark morning of Sunday, Dec. 3, 51 Republicans approved the most wildly unpopular tax bill in U.S. h...
Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/07/17

Thursday’s letters: Give your child the gift of reading

Fatherhood Involvement in Literacy CampaignGive your child the gift of readingPart of a successful game plan in sports is identifying plays that can put points on the scoreboard. Whether I was playing quarterback at Florida State or running the point...
Published: 12/05/17
Updated: 12/06/17