In his movie “The Jerk,” Steve Martin plays a simple man who receives much wealth from royalties on a patent. He is then besieged by people wanting a share of his earnings for various causes.
In one instance, he is talked into giving his money to stop the fictional practice of “cat juggling.” In another, a well-to-do man wept as he successfully begged for money to repair the leather upholstery on his private jet. How could anyone be so stupid as to donate money to such causes?
Well, sequestration aside, our federal government has decided that taxpayer money will continue to subsidize owners of private aircraft by paying the cost of manning the control towers at many small airports. This welfare for the wealthy (in addition to incredibly generous depreciation allowances for aircraft that are often manufactured by foreign countries) hid behind the skirts of besieged travelers in major airports who fly commercially.
Disadvantaged children are losing opportunities due to sequestration, but they do not have the same level of access to “The Jerk” as did that wealthy private jet owner. Of course, it would not be entirely fair to equate Congress to the lead character in “The Jerk.” That character was simple, but well-intentioned.
deserves back page
Regarding “Goodman lawyers claim more juror misconduct,” is anyone else getting sick of opening up the paper and seeing on the front page how John Goodman’s team of lawyers is trying another way to prevent him from serving his sentence for killing Scott Wilson?
Let’s see some real news on the front page. Put that garbage where it belongs, near the comics. At least we could get a chuckle out of the laughable attempts they keep presenting for a new trial. The next time I want to see a story about this on the front page is when Goodman goes to prison for 16 years. I will frame that copy of The Post.
After reading “Goodman lawyers claim more juror misconduct” and all the coverage about his attempts to get him a new trial, I am compelled to ask myself: Were the several unethical actions by juror Dennis DeMartin by accident, or design? One error I can understand, but for one juror to amass so many seems suspect.
start serving time
I am amazed at the stupidity of Goodman juror Dennis DeMartin. It’s hard to believe that anyone with an IQ over 70 could make this many errors in judgment. I do believe that this man is self-absorbed, by his own admission. Could he be dishonest as well?
John Goodman does not deserve a new trial. Let him pay the small price of 16 years for his reprehensible action. I ask John Goodman, What price does he put on a life? What if this was one of his children? Would he appreciate the perpetrator trying to worm his way out of taking responsibility for leaving the scene and killing his child? I guess that these events have shown what kind of man John Goodman is. He and Dennis should meet, if they haven’t already.
West Palm Beach
actions, facts remain
Regarding “Goodman lawyers claim more juror misconduct,” the fact remains that John Goodman hit another vehicle that went into a canal. Instead of trying to help get that person out, Goodman ran like a coward and he is still running. John Goodman should be responsible and take the punishment that he deserves. He is still alive.
Royal Palm Beach
Editor’s note: On Monday, Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Jeffrey Colbath will question juror Dennis DeMartin to determine whether there are grounds to order a new trial for John Goodman.
off-limits for Obama
I finally have something in common with the Obamas.
Upon the release of their tax returns, they show a drop in their income for 2012. Me too. I, however, like most reading this, do not get to live in subsidized housing, and I pay for vacations and entertainment. The president claimed $14,976 in business expense. In addition, he has a $50,000 non-taxable expense account. That is very reassuring, along with the $50,000 in contributions to a retirement plan. There will also be a presidential pension, Secret Service protection, and reimbursements for staff, travel, mail and office expenses.
This is all so overwhelming. I keep trying to remember what it was he said about “shared sacrifice” in many, many speeches. Did he mean he was sharing any of this with us, or we, the peasants, should share what we have with each other?
Don’t turn compliment
into sexual harassment
About the flap over President Barack Obama’s remark about an attractive attorney general’s looks (“Goliath’s faux pas,” Leonard Pitts column,) I’m as feminist as any of my “sisters,” but what’s wrong with telling a woman she’s attractive? Have we gone so far in the PC effort that a man can no longer compliment a woman without being accused of sexual harassment?
It’s all in how it’s said and why it’s said. There are compliments and there are, well, complimentary words used in less-than-commendable ways. Next thing you know, my Significant Other is going to have to have an attorney at his elbow before he tells me I look nice tonight, for fear of legal reprisals.
The president meant no disrespect in his comment about Kamala Harris. For pity’s sake, get off his case. My late mother’s favorite byword was “moderation.” Political Correctness is a really good thing — in moderation. But let’s not overreach.
Doris Duke’s generosity
should not be forgotten
Thank you for that wonderful article about Doris Duke’s estate located near Diamond Head on the Hawaiian island of Oahu (“Inside DorisDuke’s Shangri La.”) But I would like to reveal what a marvelous person she was.
Once the islands were secure during World War II from further Japanese attacks, Doris Duke would entertain and host many barbecues at her estate for our armed forces. Many of the GIs she embraced and welcomed to her wonderful barbecues (if they are still with us) will agree that a person like Doris Duke should never be forgotten for the way she endeared herself to the men and women of our military.
Change of name
will help Mounts
After a lot of hubbub and misleading rumors, the Palm Beach County Commission on Tuesday approved a new name for the county’s largest and oldest public garden: The Mounts Botanical Garden of Palm Beach County.
While it isn’t the name that we sought, we are very pleased that it accomplishes the two key goals we were after in our compromise proposal: that the garden’s name continues to honor “Red” Mounts, the father of Palm Beach agriculture and that it clarifies our location. Best of all, our campaign, albeit controversial, has focused a lot of attention on both the garden — 14 gorgeous acres with more than 2,000 species of plants that is an oasis of horticultural beauty and natural tranquility right across Military Trail from Palm Beach International Airport — and on the Friends of Mounts Botanical Garden, which has contributed more than $20 million in direct support to the garden, or approximately 40 percent of our annual operating costs.
We invite everyone to come visit us, revel in the natural beauty and take advantage of one of our many workshops, plant sales and public events. All of our staff and volunteers look forward to welcoming residents and tourists alike to one of this area’s most valuable eco-treasures.
Editor’s note: Polly Reed is president of The Friends of Mounts Botanical Garden