Making our roads safer
If the proponents of red-light cameras are really sincere about safety and not just about making a fast buck, let them do this: Increase the fines for red-light running, but add a full three seconds to every yellow light, camera-monitored or not. That should allow plenty of time for a motorist to slow down and stop without worrying about being hit from behind.
Having ample time to stop and an increased fine for failure to do so ought to make our roads a lot safer.
R. S. Rood
Preferable to death
Regarding red-light cameras: A back-end fender-bender is preferable to a T-bone collision with death. Remember how many times you waited when the light turned green but you couldn’t go because of the red-light runners making a left in front of you? Then there was no time for the rest of us to get through the light.
What short memories we have. I believe that most of opponents of red-light cameras are people who got tickets.
I think cameras should be installed at wrong-way entrances to the interstate and cellphone alerts issued to all — including the police.
Land O’ Lakes
Regarding “Tampa company takes over Ulmerton Road project” (Metro, Feb. 11): I was not surprised to hear that Conalvias walked. It’s simple math. You cannot pay six men to stand and watch one work. I drive Ulmerton Road five to six days a week, and it reminds me of the movie “Groundhog Day” — nothing ever changes. I personally came up with the thought that these people were trying to wear out dirt by moving it back and forth. Hopefully, the powers that be will keep a closer eye on the new contractor.
Regarding “Good news for GOP” (Our Views, Feb. 11):
In your editorial you call Bernie Sanders a “devout socialist” and then go on to remind readers of Cold War socialism and the fall of nations. Sanders has always referred to himself as a “Democratic socialist.” I shouldn’t have to give a newspaper a civics lesson in governmental philosophies. There is a huge difference between socialism and Democratic socialism, but here goes:
The middle step between capitalism and full-blown communism. The formal definition of socialism is a way of organizing a society in which major industries are owned and controlled by the government rather than by individual people and companies. So the important industries like health care, power, communications, transportation and others are owned by the state, but there is private property. Socialism is on the far left of the traditional left/right political spectrum.
Social ownership of the means of production, but with a democratically elected government. The formal definition is a political ideology advocating a democratic political system alongside a socialist economic system, involving a combination of political democracy with social ownership of the means of production. The adjective “democratic” is often added to distinguish itself from the Marxist-Leninist brand of socialism, which is widely viewed as being non-democratic. We have many aspects of democratic socialism in the United States today. Public libraries, snow removal, trash pick-up, Medicare, fire protection, police protection and Social Security are just a handful of examples.
Democratic socialism is on the left of the traditional left/right political spectrum.
New Hampshire reflections
Regarding “Good news for GOP:”
The New Hampshire primaries and the debate the Saturday before them demonstrated more than you covered. First, it and Donald Trump proved Einstein correct when he observed that “space and ignorance are infinite.” It is hard to believe that a third of any state could find the foul-mouthed buffoon could ever be presidential material! Hopefully, he has figured out what the nuclear triangle is by now.
Second, Chris Christie demonstrated that being rude, sarcastic and without a vision for the future is vote-worthy.
Expanding on Marco Rubio’s poor performance defending his experience worthy of being president, it is curious that Ted Cruz was spared since he has even less experience in the legislative arena. And for those who consider Cruz a government “outsider,” he has lived in the government of D.C. or Texas since leaving Harvard (not exactly State U.)
As for Jeb Bush, he has been out of politics for almost 10 years, and it shows. Rather than spend his money beating up on Rubio, he should explain how he can improve the economy and create jobs, the leading concerns with GOP voters.
It also is curious that unfavorable ratings are seldom mentioned by a poll-driven media. So please note that Trump always finishes with the highest unfavorable rating among the GOP, and Rubio has the highest favorable. It is hard to believe that in a general election someone with Trump’s negative approval rating could win. It would seem this time around that the GOP’s main objective would be to nominate someone who can win the presidential race.
James E. Robinson
It was sad indeed to see a great legal mind like Justice Antonin Scalia pass. A fitting tribute to his tenure on the high court would be to nominate a replacement in very short order.
I see calls from many well-known people in my own party (Republican) for President Obama to hold off and let the new person in the White House make the call. How devastating can this thought be? The high court is not a political football for goodness sakes. This term sees many high-profile cases that need to be decided. God forbid a case be deadlocked 4-4! It can happen.
Leaving the seat open until next year will not serve the country well.
Both sides need to put their partisan desires aside and fully vet and approve any nomination when it is made. The country deserves nothing less. Hopefully, this happens soon.