Money madness pervades politics
I walk around as the last angry woman, and I don't know where to turn or who can fix it for me and the other voters in this country. Every day on our TV we see ads from a person who headed up a company that was fined $1.7 billion for Medicare fraud. Heads of political parties are taking money donated to back candidates and living high, indulging themselves — money!
At the same time, we see lack of funding for schools, the cultural arts, social services, as well as the downsizing of jobs in the cities while candidates are looking for money. They get it and we know that some of them squander it for purposes not intended by contributors, or it comes from contributors who are looking for favors when their candidate gets elected.
Imagine our legislators meeting July 20 and leaving within a couple of hours after doing nothing. This cost $50,000. Isn't that outrageous? Aren't you miffed by this? Why not? It's certainly not benefiting the people of Florida — the voters.
I have proposed the following for two years now: No more than $1 million can be raised by each candidate, and he or she can only campaign for a four-month period. I think we are smart enough in this time to know what the candidate stands for and what he or she proposes to bring to our state.
A dear friend of mine told me that this could never happen as this campaigning/money is an industry. Well, perhaps this "industry" could divert the monies collected into the schools for our future leaders. Wouldn't this be a great way to inform our future leaders that their education is a priority and they are getting the best teachers and environment? And money could be added to the arts to help us bring new corporations into our cities to help pay our taxes.
Help! This time, vote smart!
Beverly Mitlin, St. Petersburg
Limit their spending
In my opinion, there is a serious, immediate need for meaningful campaign finance reform. It appears at this time that the two candidates with a gadzillion dollars to spend — Jeff Greene and Rick Scott — are going to buy the upcoming election in Florida.
No matter what you think of those two candidates or the others running, it seems to me that a cap on spending would level the playing field.
Does anybody think this idea would get anywhere with Congress?
Cynthia Gay, Dunedin
Parts of Arizona law are blocked July 29, story
Lighten the federal load
I had not realized how sapped the federal government has become with all its physical and financial obligations. It is sad there are not enough resources — people and funds — to secure our borders.
We really, therefore, ought to lighten the burden the federal government carries. We could do this by letting the federal government return to the states all expense and responsibility for agriculture, charity, education at all levels, environment, industry, insurance and other areas not mandated to federal care by the Constitution.
Thus lightened, the federal government could pick up one area that is mandated: the defense of the American people against all enemies foreign and domestic.
And also, whenever it snows in D.C. and the announcement is made that all nonessential government workers need not report in, maybe we could eliminate the positions of those whom the government itself calls nonessential.
Norm Lucas, Tampa
Rachel Wade verdict
Suffering all around
Nobody should be happy with the outcome of this trial.
Online taunts, harassing texts and threatening voice mails. All this culminating in one fateful night when more poor decisions were made by both girls. Rachel at a friend's home with a knife and Sarah driving to that home to confront Rachel.
When the verdict was read in the courtroom, the cheerleading from the teen friends of Sarah shows they did not learn a thing from this tragedy. Did they not realize that they were complicit in this ongoing feud? They supported, encouraged and, at times, accompanied Sarah to harass Rachel at her workplace.
All this over a young man who just used these girls for sex.
In the end, Sarah is dead and Rachel is going to prison for a very long time. In the meantime, Josh Camacho walks, a free man.
I agree with defense attorney Jay Hebert that Rachel was not judged by a jury of her peers
I do believe that Sarah attacked Rachel. I doubt that Rachel realized, at the time, that she had stabbed Sarah.
Rachel is a victim too — of immaturity and poor judgment. She is not a criminal in the strictest sense. Those teens cheerleading in the courtroom do not have a clue about what Rachel is going to go through in prison. She will be harassed and abused, by other inmates, the likes of which you cannot imagine.
I have empathy for Rachel and heartache for the parents of Sarah and Rachel. There are no winners in this tragedy.
Kenneth J. Dent, Homosassa
Controversy in cardboard | July 28
I for one find the message displayed by these cardboard cutouts to be very profound. I applaud the artist whoever it may be.
It depicts the evolution of man from uncivilized to civilized and then the return to uncivilized. We witness this so often in acts of violence by people who show such little regard for human life.
I also find irony in this article and the one that was recently on Page 1B entitled, Tampa 2nd in cop killings. It perfectly relates the seriousness of the message. Let's just hope the pendulum has reached its maximum and is about to return to civilized.
Don Murphy, Clearwater