Wall Street recklessness on rebound | Nov. 8, editorial
Losses will teach banks a lesson
The fall of MF Global under Jon Corzine's stewardship couldn't be a worse argument for more government regulation of the financial industry. More financial regulations will be written by people who are connected, smart and savvy. These are people with experience in politics and the profession — people like Jon Corzine. If these folks make such poor decisions when they could suffer direct personal consequences, why should we expect any better when they are in government with no skin in the game?
Instead of a nanny-state bureaucracy that purports to manages our lives for us and protect the bankers from themselves for their own good, I have a better idea: loss of capital. If creditors want to finance the gambling of brokerages like MF Global on investments various and sundry, let them. And if they lose their shirts doing so, let them do that too. Given a steady diet of consequences, prudence will become a lot more commonplace.
Almost everyone touched a hot stove when they were a child. How many of us did it twice?
Matt Curran, Lutz
Child sex abuse charges rock Penn State Nov. 6
Child welfare comes first
Pennsylvania, like Florida and most other states, has mandatory sexual abuse reporting for educators, health care workers and law enforcement officers.
Since reports of alleged sexual abuse were reported to supervisors at Penn State nearly 20 years ago, and nothing was done, it appears that numerous individuals, including legendary coach Joe Paterno and top university officials, might not have done their duty to report the abuse to either law enforcement or child protection workers. Just reporting it to your immediate supervisor is clearly not enough.
If any Penn State officials violated mandatory reporting laws, they should be indicted and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, no matter who they are. Protecting children is more important than protecting a winning football team.
Michael S. Greenberg, Clearwater
Decades with no progress | Nov. 8, letter
Pay earned, not distributed
First of all, income is not distributed like candy. It is earned. If you earn a good salary, you get paid a good salary. If you earn a poor salary, you get paid a poor salary. If someone "distributes" all the money fairly, how much would I get and would it be fair for my position?
Secondly, all Americans are not contributing to the growth of America. If that were true, we wouldn't be in such an economic crisis. Some choose to have the government pay for their needs. I find it ironic that the Occupy Wall Street crowd are now getting miffed that the homeless are muscling in. Now who are the haves are who are the have nots?
Ronald Melone, Clearwater
Eckerd group joins protest outside White House | Nov. 7
Look into group's funding
One line from this story interested me: "The transportation cost was picked up by the Eckerd student government as well as the organization behind TarSandsAction.org."
Granted it doesn't involve immigration documents that are 50 years old or dismissed sexual harassment charges from the 1990s, but perhaps the Times could fill in the blanks for its readers and shed some light on who this benevolent party might be.
Peter Clark, Tampa
Straight talk is missing
Isn't it about time that we had elected officials and, yes, even candidates for public office who don't have to "clarify" statements made on the previous day?
"What I really intended to say" (or mean) is getting to be the norm in the world of politics, and the constant backpedaling is becoming nauseating. It says to me that these wannabees just throw out thoughts, see how they are accepted (or not), and then go from there.
Are there no more Harry Trumans in our nation who can say what they mean and mean what they say?
Chuck Higgins, St. Petersburg
State Sen. J.D. Alexander
Senator has served well
I was taken aback by recent media coverage of State Sen. J.D. Alexander. It's easy for detractors to take potshots at politicians, especially those who hold the purse strings in particularly difficult economic times.
I can't imagine anything more difficult than crafting a state budget during our ongoing economic crisis, yet Alexander has gotten consistently high marks on his leadership each of the past three years he's done it. He has led his legislative colleagues to produce balanced budgets that manage to meet the state's most urgent priorities, despite enormous fiscal challenges.
C. Joseph Bennett Jr., Crystal River
Short on drugs, hospitals wary of 'gray market' | Nov. 7
Drug profit gravy train
This article on gray market drugs made me laugh (with tears in my eyes), particularly when various "health care" representatives were quoted about the shameful abuses of the gray marketeers, for example: "It's one thing to price-gouge gas … but it's another thing when we're talking about drugs."
Are these the same sensitive, fair-play people who, when you are captive in a hospital, charge $10 for an aspirin and a fortune for antibiotics that supermarkets provide free?
It seems that the offense taken is not in response to exorbitant pricing, but rather that the "gray marketeers" are invading the hospitals' turf for ripping off the people in need of these medicines.
Michael Schwartz, Dunedin
Jim Morin cartoon | Nov. 7
Reimagining the pledge
Here's a modified Pledge of Allegiance for our times:
I pledge allegiance to Grover Norquist, of the united supply-side economists of America, and to the Republicans with whom he stands, the wealthiest citizens of our nation, defiant of God's compassion, divisive, with liberty and justice for only those with the most money.
Robert Macar, Tampa