Once you get past Karl Nurse's distortion and exaggerations about the effect of the sequester on local social service agencies and business in general, he does have a valid point ("Big corporations and wealthy need to pay their fair share," Other Views, June 21).
The idea of corporate tax reform to lower and broaden the burden is one even the tea party supports. He is quite correct to point out that too many large firms use tax loopholes they had their lobbyists urge Congress to create just for them. But I checked with the IRS, and his claim that those in the highest tax bracket have the ability to write off a larger percent of deductions than the middle class is false. And if he thinks the federal government should be given more money from businesses and the wealthy because it is more efficient at getting the economy going, then that demonstrates he has little understanding of how the private sector business model works versus the public sector one.
Howard Lockett Jr.
TampaIn awe no more
It seems that Edward Snowden (NSA whistle-blower) is wanted by the authorities for breaking the law. This administration is maneuvering to have him returned to the United States to face charges. Does this administration think that foreign powers with whom we have no extradition agreement are going to be awed and comply because the request is from the Obama administration? The administration whose leader apologized for America's success, whose president bowed to foreign leaders and whose largest problem is "climate change"? The administration which can't send ships to "hot spots" because of sequestration, which announces to adversaries when we will be out of their way and which is fraught with internal scandals and has no coherent foreign policy? Why should they? We no longer "walk softly and carry a big stick," and that fact is well known by foreign powers large and small.
Do I hope that Snowden is returned to face charges? Yes! Do I think that will happen without more concessions, groveling and further loss of respect for America's global position.? No!
Sun City Center
He's no hero
Daniel Ellsberg released the Pentagon Papers to specifically rebut years of deliberate lies by the Johnson and Nixon administrations, not only to Congress but to the public. None of the information he released compromised the safety of informants. He did not flee the country, even though he knew he would face criminal charges.
Edward Snowden released reams of information indiscriminately to protest a program that had the oversight of Congress and the federal courts. He piously demanded complete transparency from the nation that had entrusted him with these secrets, and then fled or attempted to flee to three of the most un-free nations on Earth (China, Russia, Cuba). He is now in the process of bartering his remaining secrets to some of these governments in exchange for his freedom. I'm glad that Vladimir Putin is now his pal. But Snowden is a narcissist playing Joan of Arc in his own Joan of Arc saga. And he is no hero.
Turn back clock
Our "whistleblower" may have inadvertently given a boost to the United States Postal Service by letting us know how public our computer emails and financial transactions really are. There is, however, still the promise of privacy when one puts pen to paper, licks a stamp and sends "a letter to Garcia." Perhaps now that the secret (no surprise to me) is out there that Big Brother is watching almost everything we do, people may turn back the clock and correspond in the good old-fashioned way of handwriting an actual letter. Were that to happen, our post offices would flourish, and our mailboxes would be filled with mail we might truly enjoy reading, rather than the rubbish we all get now. With pen in hand, I am ...
Adele Ida Walter
Every day, the newspaper is full of stories about politicians breaking their promises and breaking the public's trust. Here in Florida, too many of our elected representatives simply have the wrong priorities, but I wanted to point out that sometimes it goes the other way, too.
Recently, 18 members of the Florida Legislature were recognized as "Champions of Florida's Middle Class" (see www .middleclasschamps.com) for their unwavering support of Florida's working families. During the 2013 legislative session, these lawmakers voted to protect and expand the middle class in Florida 100 percent of the time, and championed a range of issues that included protecting jobs, expanding health care access, ethics reform and more.
In the Tampa Bay area, we should be proud that state Sen. Arthenia Joyner of Tampa was included on the champions list. All 18 of these lawmakers deserve Floridians' thanks for their unwavering support and leadership on the issues that matter most to middle-class families.
Not a figure of speech
I have read a plethora of letters to the editor in my time but never one as absurd as that of Lloyd Roberts' in Wednesday's Tribune ("Banished," Your Views.
How could anyone in his right mind think, much less believe, that using the N-word is less offensive than "black"?
I grew up in the same Savannah, Ga., that Paula Deen lives in, and I can assure you that anyone using the N-word didn't do so as Roberts points out as "just a figure of speech." There is nothing right and proper about doing so - prejudice is prejudice.
Then, letter of absurdity No. 2 from Bob Guenthner ("A beautiful person," June 26). Saying the wrong thing doesn't make it right.