Tiny bit of hope in jobs report | Aug. 21, story
Washington must do more on jobs
Jeff Harrington's article noted that Florida's unemployment rate "ticked up slightly to 11.5 percent." While it may be slower than we like, improvements are being made and it is not by mistake. The article shows that Washington needs to be more proactive in creating jobs through greater investment.
Bills like the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, as well as the recent bill providing funding for teachers and health care professionals, are doing their job. Public sector jobs are still jobs. In Hillsborough County, the largest employer is our school district. Can you imagine the economic consequences of defunding our public schools? That's not to mention its effect on our children.
I also think it's important to note the statement in the story: "The traditional relationship between companies posting higher profits and then adding jobs appears to be gone." This seems to contradict some of the political ideology that concretely equates a flourishing business to job creation. Are these the same business that benefited from our tax dollars in the form of a bailout? Why isn't corporate America ready to hire yet? We are ready. We are waiting.
Florida's adding 5,700 jobs may seem slow, but this recession did not take a year to get into. Nor will it take a year to get out of. But the actions taken by Washington are working, if slowly. And more is necessary if we want it to happen quicker.
Tim Heberlein, Tampa
Where have all the jobs gone? | Aug. 20, story
Jobs have gone overseas
As the jobless recovery from the 2008 recession limps along, people are still asking, "Where are the jobs?" The jobs have moved to China and India, in case you did not notice. Big business is reaping profits while the working man is sinking further as unemployment and underemployment continue.
Decent-paying jobs have been eliminated here in favor of cheap labor overseas. And to make matters worse, we buy everything we need from the lowest bidder, so we have no manufacturing base left. No jobs, no manufacturing, no domestic growth — we sent it all overseas over the past 30 years. Wal-Mart has led the way but others are guilty, too.
In 1980, we were an exporting power; now we are the planet's largest importer. We were the world's biggest creditor, now we are the world's largest debtor. It's very straightforward: You send your jobs and money to China and India and you won't have them here.
When this insanity began, I recall the old man waving to us from his horse, selling the idea that the free market would save us and that a rising tide would lift all boats. Ronald Reagan is dead, but his bad policy is still damaging the country.
Scott Cochran, Tampa
Analyst's Hindenburg Omen points to a plunge in stocks | Aug. 20, story
Spreading financial fear
I am appalled. This article by Robert Trigaux can only lead to panic in an already unstable market. Uninformed people seeing this story on the front page will conclude that there is no smoke without fire and promptly began panic selling.
Like rumors on the Internet, this is innuendo and people's perceptions. But it certainly should not be on the front page of your newspaper.
I have been a regular subscriber to your newspaper for more than 10 years but now wonder if there is any intelligence in people controlling it to allow this article to be published. I hope that this does not create panic in the market.
Patrick Foxcroft, Tarpon Springs
Obvious problem, oblivious response Aug. 14, editorial, and Obscene palace of privilege Aug. 15, editorial
Good public service
Kudos to the St. Petersburg Times for these back-to-back exposures of local and state governments gone awry.
Officeholders in both St. Petersburg and Tallahassee should be ashamed of themselves for ignoring fundamental facts. We now have a second incident involving a highly paid city official who has been given a pass for conduct that would be subjected to much greater scrutiny and perhaps disciplinary action but for the political nature of the person involved. Apparently some citizens are "more equal than others."
Meanwhile, the tone-deaf Tallahassee crowd continues to demonstrate their complete disregard for the voters and their responsibilities as fiscal stewards. It appears that our only hope to deliver a strong message will finally come on Election Day in November, since it's the only message that they seem to hear.
These editorials provide the best kind of public service imaginable, while ensuring that the political class is not immune from the harsh light of publicity. Please don't stop now.
Dan Calabria, South Pasadena
When gators are the prey, hunt gets primitive, bloody | Aug. 19
An appalling hunt
How disgusting is this? Men hunting alligators, getting a "rush," as Roger McCulloch said, when killing them!
How does he think the gators feel when they are being stabbed, hooked, speared and what have you? They have a right to live in their swamps, rivers, etc., without grown men going out with the intent of killing them.
Grow up! Maybe one of them will grab one of you so you can feel how it is to be stabbed, knifed, etc. This is disgusting.
G. Lowell, Treasure Island