Monday, December 11, 2017


Daniel Ruth, Times columnist

Daniel Ruth, Times columnist

Daniel Ruth has been scribbling away for four decades as a reporter, film critic, television critic and columnist for the Tampa Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times and the Tampa Bay Times. He also has worked as a radio talk show host as well as an adjunct professor for the University of South Florida, the University of Tampa and Columbia College in Chicago. Daniel is a Peter Lisagor Award recipient for his columns in Chicago and has been honored by the Pinellas County Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union with the Irene Miller Vigilance In Journalism Award.

Wengay Newton addresses the media on the lawsuit allegations involving the pier outside of Town Hall in St.Petersburg, FL on January, 7th, 2013.__LUKE JOHNSON/STAFF

Ruth: Legislation turns crime victims into criminals

We have entered into the period shortly before the start of the 2018 Florida legislative session that might be described as Daffy Time in Tallahassee.This is that golden moment when state legislators endeavor to file bills that are, well,...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Times Columnist Dan Ruth. [Times file]

Dan Ruth: ‘Interpreter’ did Tampa no favors

Let us be perfectly clear. Or perhaps not.This was supposed to be a sort of moment of triumph for Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan, who was given the top job full-time while in the tense investigation to solve the serial killer murders of four...
Published: 12/08/17
TALLAHASSEE, FL. 10/15/04-CH 1 VOTE16-U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown, D-Jacksonville, center, expresses her concern about the process of the upcoming elections during a news conference with U.S. Reps. Kendrick Meek, D-Miami, left, and Stephanie Tubbs Jones, D-Ohio, Friday in Tallahassee. The trio and a group of other democrats had earlier attempted to meet with Florida Secretary of State Glenda Hood to air their concerns.   COLIN HACKLEY PHOTO FOR METRO SECTION STORY BY JONES

Ruth: Corrine Brown’s ignominious fall from grace

This is a cautionary tale of how to go from a civil rights icon to a civil rights huckster.You may have heard the old axiom that we all have a price — it’s only a matter of negotiation. In former Democratic U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown’s case, the...
Published: 12/05/17
Updated: 12/06/17

Ruth: A ray of hope as a new grandfather

There is a line often attributed to an unknown Chinese source: "May you live in interesting times."And we do.A very strange man lives in the White House. Another scary guy far away plays with nuclear missiles as if they were sparklers.
Published: 12/04/17
Times Columnist Dan Ruth. [Times file]

Dan Ruth: Time is ripe, Democrats may not be

If you are a Hillsborough County Democrat you are probably licking your chops like a lion spying a lost Bichon Frise.The country is presided over by John Belushi’s Bluto Blutarsky in Animal House. Alabama is poised to elect to the U.S. Senate a...
Published: 12/01/17
Updated: 12/04/17

Ruth: Classrooms need some controversy for learning

Thanks to those dunces in the Florida Legislature, the state’s public education system, which has never been confused with the Age of Enlightenment, could be slipping toward becoming a tower of drivel.Earlier this year, Tallahassee passed a...
Published: 11/28/17
Updated: 11/29/17
FILE - In this July 14, 2011 file photo released by U.S. Air Force, a 33rd Fighter Wing aircraft maintainer moves by the Department of Defense's newest aircraft, the U.S. Air Force F-35 Lightning II joint strike fighter (JSF), before giving the pilot an order to taxi the aircraft at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. Detractors say the F-35 stealth fighter, the costliest military plane ever, is destined to go down as one of the biggest follies in aviation history. But it may have found a savior: deep-pocketed U.S. allies hungry to add its super high-tech capabilities to their arsenal. The program marked a major success last month when Japan chose it as a replacement for 42 aircraft. It was the F-35's first victory in an open-bidding competition, though countries from Britain to Israel previously made commitments. (AP Photo/U.S. Air Force, Samuel King Jr., File) ORG XMIT: TOK103

Daniel Ruth: The F-35 is a turkey in the air, when it actually gets there

If this had been a slightly addled elderly man at the end of the bar deep into his third martini pontificating about America’s latest newfangled secret weapon — an invisible jet fighter instilling fear into our evildoing enemies — well, you could...
Published: 11/27/17
Republican Lawrence McClure has denied any connection with a negative mailing campaign in his successful bid for his party's nomination to the District 58 state House seat. [Times file]

Daniel Ruth: An honest committee name? Floridians for a Greater Steaming Pile of Political Phooey

There’s a great scene in A Man For All Seasons when Sir Thomas More, on trial for refusing to express his loyalty to King Henry VIII, confronts one of his accusers who has just delivered false testimony against him in return for a royal...
Updated one month ago

Ruth: Florida foolishly makes it harder to see nursing home inspections

Florida’s once vaunted reputation as the Sunshine State, a leader in open government, providing the citizenry broad, unfettered access to public meetings and records, is becoming increasingly dreary and overcast with a better than average chance of...
Updated one month ago
Traffic is seen along Interstate 4 in the Champions Gate area near Orlando. The 132-mile road, which stretches from Tampa to Daytona Beach, tops the list  of most dangerous highways since 2010, according to an analysis by EverQuote.   [CHRIS URSO | Times]

Ruth: Would high-speed rail have reduced traffic deaths on I-4?

Ah, just in time for the Thanksgiving travel season, Florida has once again achieved national prominence. We’re No. 1 — with a body bag! Can’t you feel the pride swelling?A recent study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration...
Updated one month ago