Wrong move

On July 9, Mount Pleasant Mayor Billy Swails and members of Town Council will take a final vote on re-zoning the Seacoast land tract from economic development to residential. This is a big deal for many reasons.

1) The Seacoast tract is the largest economic development tract close to I-526. Changing it to residential would be against the town’s own comprehensive plan. Economic development will bring long-term gains to Mount Pleasant in the form of business taxes and fees as well employment opportunities.

2) There are currently 14 housing developments occurring in Mount Pleasant. They range in size from 2,000 home sites to 40 home sites. With this much housing development there is no need for more.

3) A housing development on the Seacoast tract will overwhelm an already overcrowded school system as well as an already failing intersection, Belle Hall Parkway and Long Point Road, which the town has failed to address.

4) The Seacoast tract is located right on I-526. Residential developments on a major highway are the least desirable types of property, look at Etiwan Pointe. On Daniel Island do you see residential development on I-526? No, commercial properties are on the highway.

5) The Seacoast tract sits in front of the residential development Grassy Creek. Grassy Creek residents built or purchased their homes with the understanding that the property would be economic development providing buffers between their homes and any development on the Seacoast property. Residential does not provide buffers.

One’s home is the most important investment a person makes. By Mayor Swails and Town Council voting to change it to residential they are not protecting the investments of the residents of Grassy Creek.

So what can residents of Mount Pleasant do? They can contact Mayor Swails and members of Town Council and tell them to keep the tract commercial. CouncilCLK@tompsc.com.

They can attend the July 9 Town Council meeting at 6 p.m. and speak out. For the best interest of the town and residents, the Seacoast tract needs to stay commercial.

Susan Faulds

River Oak Drive

Mount Pleasant

Fantasy realm

Summer is a time for blockbuster science fiction movies, and this summer, with “Man of Steel” and “World War Z” leading the way, is no exception.

Not to be outdone by Hollywood, Sen. Joe McCarthy clone Darrell Issa and fellow House Republicans are currently producing three pseudo-historical fantasies tentatively titled “Obama and the Benghazi Conspiracy,” “Obama and the IRS Conspiracy” and “Obama and the Fourth Amendment Conspiracy.”

Each fantasy takes place in the Republicans’ alternate universe where fiction becomes fact, white is black, up is down, the universe is 6,000 years old and anthropogenic climate change is a fraud.

Sadly, I must report the demise of members of a fourth House Republican film crew who lurched so far to the right while filming the fantasy “Obama’s plan to disarm America,” that they fell off the end of the flat Earth on which they lived.

Larry Knight

Rockbridge Road

Columbia

A long time wet

I moved to Charleston in 1979. A young Mayor Joe Riley said then that he was going to do something about the flooding in downtown Charleston. After 33 years I’m still waiting.

Please hurry, Joe. Neither one of us is getting any younger.

Scott Cracraft

Pignatelli Crescent

Mount Pleasant

Hold their fire

It’s surprising that articles regarding the quality of life on Charleston Harbor don’t mention a multi-masted, green and white sailboat, laden with tourists, that pulls between the State Ports Authority Building and Fleet Landing, and emits a canon shot almost every evening, claiming this is part of their tour.

The city ombudsman/citizens service has been called many times about this, as it is so surprising and loud that it could cause a heart attack. It upsets the serenity of a lovely night. Residents are appalled by it.

A city representative has spoken to the operators several times, asking them to go farther out into the harbor to shoot, to no avail. The more complaints, the more they do it.

Betty Segal

Concord Street

Charleston

Too soon

Paul Krugman has argued repeatedly that adjustments to the Social Security (and Medicare) eligibility age are a bad idea. Krugman’s reasoning rests on the assumption that the current retirement age is demographically reasonable and therefore should be continued, and furthermore that life expectancy for those near retirement age and older has not changed since 1935.

Practically and empirically Krugman’s argument makes absolutely no sense. The Social Security plan was enacted in 1935 and the full benefit program took effect in 1940. Let’s start with the basic demographic facts of that time.

Why age 65 was set as the mark for retirement eligibility is a bit of a mystery, but a reasonable assumption is that it had something to do with average life expectancy at that time. The demographic facts for that period are solid: The average life expectancy was 62 years. Comparatively, (2012) life expectancy is 77 years.

These are basic, clear and unequivocal demographic facts for the respective time periods. So how does Krugman deal with these basic demographic facts? He doesn’t.

Clearly, one of the more basic problems with both Social Security and Medicare is that they are not based on a logical and reasonable demographic model.

There is simply no logical reason to assume that age 65 should be forever set as an age marker for benefits. This assumption very simply defies common sense. A logical eligibility model should be tied to average life expectancy. This eligibility age should be updated every 10 years (for a 50-year eligibility range).

Jonathan Walker, Ph.D.

Coral Reef Drive

Johns Island

Treating obesity

The June 25 article regarding treating obesity as a disease has me shaking my head in dietary disbelief. I thought human beings had some sense of responsibility for their own well being.

Is walking a mile or two a day and watching what we put in our bodies so hard that a third party has to step in and make excuses for people not doing it?

We are given the brain power to make decisions all day long, and if someone decides to eat a whole bag of chips vs a handful, that is not a disease, it is a choice (and for the morbidly obese, a poorly made choice bag after bag, mouthful after mouthful).

I am tired of those who want to strip responsibility from people making decisions. I guess it’s just another way to get someone else to pay for overweight people’s self-imposed troubles.

Two words: Take responsibility. That will start solving the problems we face as human beings in this overindulged country.

I take responsibility for my actions and my non actions every day, and if the governing bodies continue to pat people on the head and tell them it’s really not a problem they created, we’re well on our way to a boatload of trouble.

Maybe my anger and frustration will be deemed a disease too, so I won’t have to be responsible for what I say and do.

Cindy Zimmerman

Woodlake Court

Mount Pleasant

Inconsistent

Let me get this straight: It takes $22 million to protect a few houses on Folly Beach, but we reject funds for teachers or medical care for tens of thousands of our neighbors because we can’t take federal handouts.

Jim Cubie

Awendaw Landing Road

Awendaw