GOT THERE FIRST
On behalf of the members of the Lake Eola Heights Historic Neighborhood Association, I would like to extend a warm and grateful thank you to `Billy Manes` and the Orlando Weekly. Your recent article showcasing the oral history we are undertaking as a neighborhood will help many in Orlando to understand the importance of reaching out into one’s community, discovering the roots of its people and the place they have chosen to live, work and play `“Oral Eola,” March 13`.
Your story has captured the essence and spirit of our project. Whatever media attention we receive over the course of this next year, `Billy Manes` and the Orlando Weekly will remain as the first to report our efforts, a place in Orlando’s documented history we are proud to be a member. Again, thank you so very much.
David Martens, Orlando
NUKES ARE SAFE
I’m not sure if there’s a link between radiation poisoning and pancreatic cancer `“The Florida syndrome,” March 20`. The cancers with a strong link to intense radiation exposure are thyroid and leukemia.
Something about Chernobyl not widely understood outside of scientific circles is it could only have happened in a totalitarian society where one or two people could dictate science policy. That’s why in the West no one anywhere has ever built a large-scale graphite moderated reactor. Water moderated reactors are self-damping, so in a loss of coolant accident the chain reaction stops. Graphite moderated reactors in the same situation are self-accelerating. It is estimated that by the time the reactor at Chernobyl blew, it was generating 1,000 percent of its rated power.
Another thing no one ever talks about is the nuclear safety record of the American Navy. A Nimitz class supercarrier has five or six reactors, yet the only nuclear powered vessels the Navy has ever lost are the Thresher and the Scorpion. The best evidence is the safety systems on Thresher functioned as designed, scramming the reactor at the critical time when Thresher most needed reactor power. There is good evidence Scorpion was taken out by a Soviet torpedo when the Soviets believed Scorpion had collected intelligence they didn’t want getting back to United States.
The reactor on the Thresher, and perhaps also on the Scorpion, is periodically monitored by the Navy for leakage and contamination.
Franklin Ratliff, via the Internet
While I have no idea how this mess can be corrected `“Fiasco,” March 20`, expecting the Democratic National Committee to issue a public apology for overreacting in exchange for the Florida Democratic Party accepting a public reprimand seems unlikely.
I think the best way to avoid this sort of mess next time is to have Tallahassee tell the Democratic National Committee and the Republican National Committee sometime between Jan. 21, 2009, and Jan. 1, 2010, that in 2012 things will be different. That is, in accordance with the ruling made in late 2007, that the Florida presidential primary is a private function of the DNC and the RNC and not a matter of concern for the government of Florida, and that since the major points of this dispute seems to boil down to two issues – who has the authority to set the dates and who’s going to pay for the primaries – and since we have a longstanding tradition of no taxation without representation in this country, therefore the 2012 Florida presidential primary will be done in one of two non-negotiable ways: 1) In exchange for underwriting the costs of the presidential primaries, the DNC and the RNC will agree to cede to the people of the state of Florida, through their state government, the sole right to decide when said primaries will be held; or 2) The DNC and RNC will agree to privately contract with the Florida Department of Elections and its 67 county affiliates to pay for all the costs of their presidential primaries out of their own treasuries.
Russell J. Mitchell, Orlandoletters@orlandoweekly.com