Opinions to go Online

The unique perspective and provocative opinions of Joe O’Neill

Gayle Sierens: From Girl Next Store To Media Icon

Gayle Sierens. We’ll not see her likes again. A few days ago she signed off for the last time as a news co-anchor with WFLA-TV, Channel 8. She had been doing it for the last 30 years. Prior to that, she had been covering sports for the same station for eight years. Prior to that, [...]

JCC With A HoJo Touch

There was a lot to like in the official celebration of the Tampa Jewish Community Center’s launching of its $26 million project to reincarnate Fort Homer Hesterly Armory–vacant for 11 years–into a new, multi-purpose community center by next fall. It will be known as the Bryan Glazer Family JCC, in honor of the Tampa Bay [...]

Rubio, Jeb: Not Ready For Prime Time?

These are not the best of foreign-policy times for either former Gov. Jeb Bush or (presumptive former) Sen. Marco Rubio. Neither one has been consistent or coherent on the subject of the Iraq War that took out Saddam Hussein and left dead Americans and regional chaos in its wake. Bush looked like someone who hasn’t [...]

The Big Growler

It was heartening, on balance, to see some good news coming out of Tallahassee the other day when Gov. Rick Scott signed into law a measure that legalizes 64-ounce growlers. It’s considered a win for this state’s craft beer association, the Florida Brewers Guild, and that’s good for Tampa, rapidly morphing into craft-beer preeminence. The [...]

Honor Stewart Legacy

Amid all the speculation and intense lobbying about the next executive director of the Environmental Protection Commission, this inevitably comes to mind: We’re still in the debt of Roger Stewart. He WAS the EPC–from inception through three decades of often contentious service, especially in the unenlightened 1970s. Roger the steward fought the good, if curmudgeonly, [...]

Mayor Bob Sounds Different

Mayor Bob Buckhorn, to be sure, knows his way around a sound bite. Tampa’s Democratic CEO and cheerleader-in-chief also knows his way around pragmatic politics. He has friends and political supporters on both sides of the aisle, and playing partisan politics is not in Tampa’s best interest. If, for example, a profile-raising, economically-impacting national political [...]

Mayor Bob Sounds Different

Mayor Bob Buckhorn, to be sure, knows his way around a sound bite. Tampa’s Democratic CEO and cheerleader-in-chief also knows his way around pragmatic politics. He has friends and political supporters on both sides of the aisle, and playing partisan politics is not in Tampa’s best interest. If, for example, a profile-raising, economically-impacting national political [...]

Tampa Bay’s Beltway Connection

Secretary of State John Kerry’s new spokesman is Rear Adm. John Kirby, who previously served as the Pentagon spokesman for Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen. Kirby is a St. Pete native and a graduate of St. Petersburg Catholic High School and USF. Kirby joins White House press secretary Josh Earnest with Tampa [...]

Media Matters

* For all the well-chronicled missteps–i.e., inaccuracies of all stripe–of daily newspapers these days, it was ironic to see the technical detail in the obit for Josephine Marchese Trafficante. She was referenced as the widow of “reputed” Tampa mob boss Santo Trafficante Jr. After all these years, still “reputed.” * Can you imagine the range [...]

Quoteworthy

* “I am reaffirming our ironclad commitment to the security of our gulf partners.”–President Barack Obama to Arab-state leaders of the Gulf Cooperation Council meeting at Camp David. * “We are natural allies… The way we should look at it is what India and the U.S. can together do for the world…strengthening democratic values all [...]