LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Closed shutters ugly, but better than storm damage

Aug 6, 2008

Palm Beach Post Letters to the Editor

Palm Beach Post--August 06, 2008

Port St. Lucie recently passed ordinance 08-58 that allows non-occupied structures to be protected with closed storm shutters during the storm season (June 1 to Nov. 30). Many residents in homeowner association (HOA)-governed communities head north for all or some portion of the storm season. Most of these home owners are not permitted to close or install storm shutters before they leave. This is because their HOA rules have placed restrictions on when they can be used.

Even though closed shutters can protect windows (and homes) from wind-borne debris, most HOAs are of the opinion that shutters are aesthically unpleasing to the eye. This is true even though architectural review committees must set standards for shutter type, appearance, color, etc. before shutters can be installed. Most boards suggest that residents make arrangements (either with neighbors or paid help) to close or install shutters in the event of a National Weather Service storm watch. Severe thunderstorms that can produce gale-force winds are not considered. Aesthetics wins out over the ability to protect property.

Insurance companies that may be providing a discount for the use of storm shutters have a vested interest in this matter. If they can effectively lobby lawmakers in Tallahassee to prohibit restrictions on storm shutter use during the storm season, we may all enjoy a reduction in insurance rates.


Port St. Lucie

Doctor in McCain camp pushes voter into Obama’s

As an undecided voter in a swing state, I found enlightening the story about Dr. Slobodon “Danny” Jazarevic, an area doctor who, at the request of Sen. John McCain, made public statements about his patients for political purposes (“Obama slammed for nixing troop visit,” July 30). As an ex-medical professional who was stationed in Germany as well, I can tell you that not all patients were so pleased with the “circus” that political visits brought.

More disturbing is the breach of medical ethics that Dr. Jazarevic’s comments represent. Sen. Obama opted not to visit Landstuhl Medical Center. Had he gone, he would be using the wounded troops as political props in a campaign. Sen. Obama chose not to go down that road. Obviously, Sen. McCain did not make the same choice, going so far as to enlist a medical professional’s assistance in turning our soldiers into political pawns.

Does Dr. Jazarevic, a Republican activist who is running in a GOP primary for a Treasure Coast state House seat, discuss the treatment of patients with his political cohorts? If one is not a Republican, does one get the same quality of care from Dr. Jazarevic? His answer is immaterial to me since he has shown that he has no problems with “pimping” his patients for politics.

I hope that there will be an investigation by the medical board into this egregious breach of ethics. At a minimum, he owes the patients an apology. Thank you, Dr. Jazarevic; count this previously undecided voter in the Obama camp. You made the choice easy.


Palm City

Corporations collude; gas prices fall to sell guzzlers

Don’t be lulled by the sudden drop in prices at the pump. Doesn’t it seem odd that with the automakers sitting with high inventories of gas-guzzlers that the price of gas suddenly begins to decline? As someone who has been around for 80-plus years, I have seen on many an occasion where one part of corporate America comes to the rescue of their cohorts. As night follows day, when the inventories on pickups and SUVs fall, the price of gas will once again rise. The automakers made their own bed. Let them lie in it. The trap has been set. Be like the smart bear. Walk around it.


Palm Beach Gardens

Parker, McCain now in minority on Iraq War

Noted military tactician Kathleen Parker wants Barack Obama to say that he’s sorry that he opposed sending more Americans to die in Iraq (“Pride clouds Obama’s vision,” July 30). Ms. Parker calls the military escalation a success. The families of the 219 service members who have died so far this year might disagree. Ms. Parker questions Sen. Obama’s judgment.

Here are the facts: John McCain voted for the Iraq War and still says it was the right thing to do. Sen. Obama opposed the Iraq War and says it distracted us from fighting our real enemies. More than 4,125 Americans have died in action in Iraq. Hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars have paid for the war and occupation. Sen. McCain wants us to remain for 100 years, sending generations of soldiers to die there and spending huge sums of money. Most Americans now oppose the war. The majority agrees with Sen. Obama. It is Sen. McCain who has displayed poor judgment.



Obey law of supply, demand; drill offshore

If there is something I know about, it is the law of supply and demand. I am very concerned about what is taking place with our state and local government in terms of layoffs and cutbacks in our ability to afford what we need. Retirees on fixed incomes would like to support our state and local tax-free bonds. With that said, the plan to let states decide whether to allow offshore drilling and participate in the revenues may be in our best interest since it is now proven to be environmentally safe, and it is so far offshore that no one will ever see it 50 to 100 miles off the coast.

We must begin now using every possible source of supply while we begin to search for alternatives. The threat to national security with the transfer of wealth that is taking place, about $700 billion annually, is about four times the cost of the Iraq War. Even ending the war is nothing compared with the energy outflow. So, the time to make this our No. 1 priority is immediate. It would put people to work, take the pressure off and be a benefit to Florida and our nation.


Palm Beach Gardens

Response to alternative school’s ‘F’ too punitive

I was shocked to hear the school board’s attitude toward Lake Shore Middle Annex’s “F” (“2 county schools facing shutdown,” July 30). The annex is an alternative school that accepts transfer students with behavior and learning problems from schools all over the county. Given that the annex is a temporary assignment for many, it is unfair to judge such a school by the same measures as regular schools. Students should have to take the FCAT, but the school as a whole should not be graded or judged on the results. It would be like condemning an emergency room doctor as a bad physician because a higher percentage of his patients die than someone in, say, dermatology.

We need alternative schools where students with special problems can get the help they need to get on track, but with this kind of punitive approach, no teacher will want to risk his or her career by working there.


Belle Glade