Less is more

It is time for our elected officials to realize that less government is much healthier than more expansive, rambling and sprawling government and massive entitlements.

The current situation in Washington is a tragedy and disaster. Our elected officials are supposed to be smart. They should start acting smart. No business would be successful with such terrible management.

This country can no longer function on an unlimited credit card. Every one of the members of Congress, and the White House, should be docked pay until our country is back on track.

The continuing bullying and intimidation is disgraceful. Government employees are enjoying a “paid holiday.” Congress voted retroactive pay to civilian employees for lost days. These employees should do retroactive work.

Peggy W. Levinson

Pitt Street

Charleston

Saving electricity

Re Kim Comando’s column on “How to lower your electric bill”:

Having worked for SCE&G for 35 years, part of that time in corporate communications, I can say confidently that SCE&G does not automatically change electric rates based on the time of day. If it did, the schedule for seasonal peak hours and rate changes would appear on each bill.

It does, however, change rates based on the season of the year. At one time, it offered a special time-of-use rate, which as far as I know only one person in Charleston used because it was extremely inconvenient. This rate was obviously designed for people doing shift work and not at home during peak hours.

Here’s how that rate worked. Peak hours on winter mornings, usually the coldest of the day, were something like 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. That meant that you couldn’t get up and have a hot shower, adjust the furnace, or send the kids off to school with a hot breakfast. The summer peaking hours are about 4 p.m. to about 7 p.m. or 8 p.m. so you couldn’t come home, adjust your thermostat, cook supper, do laundry or use a major appliance for fear of penalty.

With that said, it is never a bad idea to limit heat-producing appliances such as your stove or clothes drying to off-peak hours in the summertime. Use the outdoor grill instead and wait until later in the evening to dry your clothes.

Using a timer on your water heater is also recommended. If you work and your house is empty during the day, adjust your thermostat when you leave, remembering that if you turn it down too much in winter and have a heat pump, the heat strips may come on when you turn it back up, thus negating your effort to save money. For more tips, SCE&G offers a free energy audit and a brochure on energy-saving tips.

Barbara Powell

Gypsy Lane

Mount Pleasant

Avoid danger

Certainly the story of William Alex Apps and his tragic killing on Oct. 3 is a sad story, and yes, expressing concerns about student safety to the mayor and police chief is not out of order.

In many forums that I participate in that discuss personal defense, the term “situational awareness” is discussed time and time again.

The basis for situational awareness is the idea that wherever you go, whatever you do and when you do it should be thought out with an appreciation of your personal safety. Any negatives should be avoided to the maximum extent that you can.

Picking up unknown men who were not vetted in any way, shape or form (even during the day) and driving off with them to sell a truck suggests a tragedy waiting to happen. Situational awareness would have prevented it.

Selling a car or something of value to strangers through Craigslist, going to an ATM at midnight to withdraw cash, walking around on a dark and lonely street, particularly while talking on your cellphone or listening to music, is sweet music to the villains.

For a woman there is the danger of not only a robbery but of rape.

These activities are just asking for trouble and even death.

The mayor and the police chief cannot assign manpower to every person who is in his own little world with earplugs preventing any awareness of what is around.

Situational awareness puts a damper on your comings and goings, especially late night fun runs at bars and music venues downtown.

Wake up and measure this damper against your mortality.

Seymour Rosenthal

Waterfront Drive

Mount Pleasant

Ugly building

I reviewed all the buildings that I could find on the Clemson University campus, which numbered almost 100.

None of the buildings on this beautiful campus bore any resemblance to the monstrosity that the school of architecture wants to build in historic Charleston.

I suggest that before Clemson University dares to suggest constructing such a inappropriately designed building in our beautiful city, it builds one like it on its own campus.

Phil Reuther

Brady Street

Daniel Island

Inland port

An additional inland port at the junction of I-26 and I-95 would be even more logical and logistical than the one in Greer. It would complement the Upstate port and our port.

Marshall Heiden

Highway 165

Hollywood