Thursday, August 28, 2014

800,000 Jobs Lost by Crist?

Here's the next movie for the new YouTube channel. For a while I'll post one of these a day.

 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

YouTube Channel: "Rick Scott Must Go!"

As I said earlier today, I have a little surprise. 

In an effort to bring my list of reasons to dis-elect Rick Scott to more people, I've created some movies for a YouTube channel I've called "Rick Scott Must Go!"

Here's the very first movie, a pilot that talks about Scott's legislation bringing advertisements to nature trails. If it turns out people like these, I'll make some more.

By the way, Rick Scott was drawn by a friend of mine who is a professional cartoonist. He thought Rick Scott looked best drawn like Mr. Burns from The Simpsons. I agree!

 

Jennifer Carroll Says: "I was treated like an unwanted stepchild"

Rick Scott's former lieutenant governor has a new "kiss and tell" (or maybe "kick and tell") book where she affirms most of what we already know: Rick Scott is a creepy, uncaring, cold, reptilian backstabber who despises minorities. The Scott campaign will no doubt start talking about sour grapes, but even if it was (and I doubt it is), they've heaped up enough plates of that themselves the past few years to not be able to escape hypocrisy.

I thought that was a bulletin worth sharing. A little later I'll have something special.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

FL 2014 Primary Results

I made several endorsements, but I only wrote individually about four: Crist for gov., Sheldon for AG, Lemonidis for Group 14 (18th Circuit), and a piece about Curcio/Miller for the two school districts in Seminole.

Except for the school races, the others came through.

You can see ALL of the results here at http://mynews13.com/election.html

MUST SEE: Stewart Obliterates Fox News over Ferguson

Jon is outraged at Fox's outrage. The story with link is here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/erik-wemple/wp/2014/08/27/daily-shows-jon-stewart-obliterates-fox-news-coverage-of-ferguson

You can also go directly to the link here: http://thedailyshow.cc.com/videos/ufqeuz/race-off.

Sorry, but this video is no allowing me to embed.

We've been waiting for Jon to take down Fox's increasingly despicable rhetoric (including this morning questioning of we can really call a big black guy an "unarmed teen")? It was worth the wait.

“I guarantee you that every person of color in this country has faced an indignity, from the ridiculous, to the grotesque, to the sometimes fatal, at some point in their … I’m gonna say last couple of hours, because of their skin color,” he said, before making his final, sobering statement: “Race is there and it is a constant. You’re tired of hearing about it? Imagine how fucking exhausting it is living it.”

Monday, August 25, 2014

My one and only endorsement of GOP candidate: Florida's 5th district

The worst possible thing you can do in politics is an act of betrayal. This monstrosity could not have occurred without Corrine Brown being a willing stooge to the GOP's devious plan to retain control with her ridiculously unfair district.

Corrine has been fighting any semblance of fair districts for 20 years, allowing the GOP to bleach the surrounding districts in return for a solid DEM district (as opposed to just a strong DEM district). She is unethical and corrupt. Frankly, I'd love to see someone primary her so I could support them. Otherwise, this is the only vote I'd make in the nation for the GOP candidate: either Thuy Lowe or Gloreatha Scurry-Smith. There is an extremely high bar I set for crossing over, but Corrine reached it years ago.

DESPICABLE. Judge says illegal, gerrymandered map is now OK for this election cycle

As usual, Floridians are kicked in the stomach when we're down:

A judge on Friday gave a victory to the state’s Republican-controlled Legislature, rendering a decision that effectively forces voters to choose candidates in November based on a congressional map that he ruled was invalid because it favored the GOP.

So a GOP-carved district that bobs and weaves 160+ miles through NINE counties and shoves every single black neighborhood from Jacksonville to Orlando into it will stand. This despite a clearly-worded CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT, passed in 2010, that districts had to be drawn fair, compact and sensible without concern for demographics.

Beleaguered Floridians cheered the initial ruling from same judge throwing out the maps. The foremost experts on gerrymandering in the nation testified that these were the most blatantly biased maps ever drawn. The GOP had the audacity to submit the monstrosity through a a website for "public input" moments before the 5 am deadline through an FSU student who testified, under oath, that he never submitted it. (HE did somehow get a great job working for the House Speaker's brother.)

Documents were destroyed, all of the Speaker's emails were "accidentally" deleted, and internal data and drafted maps were shared with only GOP political consultants in clear violation of our state sunshine laws.

Activists brought the suit, because our overpaid, ideological Attorney General, Pam Bondi, wasn't going to do jack about it. I was proud because they not only shined a light on these cockroaches; they had them scampering.

What SHOULD have happened is a demand from Judge Terry Lewis that a nonpartisan panel or the Supreme Court redraw the maps since the legislature proved wholly incapable of following the Constitution.

What SHOULD have happened is the legislators engaging in such devious behavior should have not only been taken out of the process, but SENT TO PRISON!

But this is Florida....

The GOP legislature made very, VERY minor tweaks to the map, only cutting off some of the extraordinary appendages. Despite our state Constitution demanding that districts be drawn fair, compact, and sensible with no regard to demographics, we are stuck with pretty much the same map that the judge earlier called reprehensible.

You know this was a victory for the GOP because their leaders are crowing about how awesome this all is, while the Democrats are furious and vowing an appeal.

You can get mad or you can GOTV. People are fed up. Even people in gerrymandered districts like District 51 or District 53 are running neck and neck. Keep in mind that the GOP gerrymander the statewide races... so let's fight hard to throw our Rick Scott and Pam Bondi.

Your arrogance blinds you, Florida GOP. The state has suffered for 4 years under a Teabag regime, and we are leaning more left and getting more diverse by the day.

You can rule by lies and cheating only for so long. Enjoy your day, GOP. We'll be preparing for ours.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Meme Monday (8/25/14)

Families Stranded in Woods because Rick Scott Literally Ran Away from Questions

Rick Scott is so well-known for dodging questions that his ridiculous antics to avoid them are a story unto itself.

One that hasn't gotten much press is what happened when citizen journalist, author, and current State House candidate (District 53) David A. Kearns tried to ask a few questions at a photo op of Rick Scott. Kearns had gotten wind that Scott would be with supporters at Hillborough River State Park. The decision to have it at all at the state park was a bit of irony, since Scott earlier tried to close it down, along with 52 other parks. (Several of the survivors he wanted turned into golf courses with hotels. No kidding.)

The photo op was as usual: Rick Scott surrounded by friendly, white, republican supporters while he tried his best to look and act like his view of the straw-chewing, unwashed masses. He played dressup, complete with a ranger outfit. He did his level-best impersonation as a blue collar worker who supposedly picked up trash and spread mulch. (Odd, because no one saw him do that and there are no photos. Just take his word, idiots.)

In the afternoon, Scott was allowed to conduct a tour on a haywagon for his GOP guests of the Fort Foster Historic Site. According to his website, it went just swimmingly. In reality, it was a nightmare.

David Kearns had a few questions to ask the governor, but didn't want to embarrass the governor in front of the families who were on the trip. Scott's press guy, Lane Wright, didn't recognize David and asked which group he was with. David told him he was a citizen journalist and wanted to ask a few quick questions with the governor. He was told how "inappropriate" that was.

After a few minutes of activity with his iPhone, he told David that citizen journalists are not "serious" journalists, so no access would be provided. (As if media journalists get treated better.)

David kept pressing. Wright demanded to know the types of questions. Dave told him--budget cuts, prison privatization and the like. Wright then huddles with Scott and his handlers. They run around a little bit. Dave goes to seek some shade in the sun. In that instant, Rick Scott and his entire staff took off like mad men, ditching the entire group.

The confused guests hopped back on the hayride and tried to make it back. Within a few yards, the truck pulling them broke down.

The driver tells everyone they have to walk the entire distance back. Elderly men and women, toddlers, and entire families were forced to walk in 95 degree heat over a quarter of a mile and across a busy state road to get back. By the time everyone finally did get back, Rick had already held his press conference and took off.

Some of the group questioned the timeliness of the breakdown, and others were just furious that they had been stranded. Seems that even supporters of Scott who get to know him hate him as well.

Dave Kearns is like many of us in Florida.. absolutely fed up. He is so angry at Scott's antics he wrote a book entitled Rick Scott: Enemy of the State. David has been a former professional journalist and a teacher who wants what everyone in Florida wants: to bring sanity back to the Florida legislature and rehabilitate our state's horrible reputation.

There are thinking, feeling human beings in this state and our voices are being drowned out by the FOX noise machine, and well-funded reactionary republicans who have usurped out state's government.--David Kearns

His opponent, John Tobias, is a homophobe who mocks gays and, according to the Orlando Sentinel, makes "inappropriate comments about women." He only won by 2% points.

David Kearns is the independent in the race. I normally go for the Democrat, but in this case, I can't support her because of her passive campaign philosophy. You need someone who will get angry and fight. It's time to start pushing back.

Volunteer or contribute at "668 Dunbarton Circle Ne Palm Bay Florida 32905" making check to "The Committee to Elect David Kearns". He accepts nothing greater than $1000 per donation.

http://www.davidakearns.com/

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Statewide and Local Primary Endorsements by SemDem

Had a little help. I credit local pundit Howard Mass, twitter followers like @lb_holly and Le Chat Noire, and other readers who made comments on Seminole Democrat blog. I also researched online, read the mainstream media's choices, and read through the candidate's positions and promises on their webpages.

Only a few actual endorsements, the others are recommendations. I did that because if candidates are very similar in position or ideology, I did not think it fair to endorse one over the other because I didn't use any questionnaires this year.

I linked to the posts I wrote if on the candidates I felt strongly for (or against). With only one exception, I will be doing no individual posts for the judges.

I can also only cover the local races in Seminole County as this process takes time. But if you are a Floridian outside of Seminole County with a question on a candidate or ballot issue for this primary, post in comments or send me a message I'll look into it. One last thing, I am not in any way affiliated with the Seminole Democratic Party.

Governor

Strong Endorsement: Charlie Crist

Please read why I did this.

Attorney General

Recommendation: George Sheldon

Very, very tough call. Won't be upset if Perry Thurston wins, but I picked Sheldon for a reason.

School Board Districts:

Endorsement: Frank Curcio (District 1) and Gracia Miller (District 2)

These are the best offered. Again, I explain why in the link.

Selections for 18th Circuit Court:

Recommendation: Circuit Judge Group 13: Samuel Bookhardt lll

All are qualified and all three are republicans. With things being equal, Sam is a veteran so I started leaning towards him. He is also a minority and we desperately need more minority representation. True that Sanchez is a minority as well but she is very young: not htat I have a problem with a young judge but I, along with Howard, agree that such a young conservative would quickly elevate to a higher position. Sam is slightly ahead in my book, albeit not by much.

Endorsement: Circuit Judge Group 14: Robin Lemonidis

I was leaning for Lemonidis anyway, but when I got the most ignorant mailer I have ever received from judicial candidate Goldfarb, I stepped up my effort to see she doesn't win. This is the only judicial race where I endorsed someone.

Recommendation: Circuit Judge Group 19: Donna Goerner

Howard and I are in agreement that Susan Stacy should scare the bejeebus out of you. She is being loaded with a ton of money and the rightwing really, really wants her to win.

We agree Goerner seems the most reasonable. She was also endorsed by the Sentinel for her knowledge and experience, which includes over 100 jury trials. The problem is, once again, all three are republicans so we have to expect any of them will tow the party line. Howard makes a good case for Mitch Krause by saying Goerner has time to move higher on the bench. I agreed with this strategy or Group 13, but in this case, Goerner is likely the most fair and best qualified.

Recommendation: Circuit Judge Group 23: Nancy Maloney

Nancy used to be a Democrat before she went NPA, which is actually a smart move in this county. Howard pointed out Maloney is 64 and will likely do only one term anyway.

Arcadier is a very ambitious conservative and and none too ethical. He would be my last choice on that ballot.

Seminole County Court Judge

Recommendation: Sandra Rivera

She might be more green but experience doesn't equate to being a good judge (see Scalia and Thomas). She is a registered Dem and we need to support judges that won't be intimidated by Rick Scott or the NRA. We also need more Hispanic judges as the Hispanic community gets no representation on the bench in this County.

This would be an endorsement but I can't fairly do that in this case since a questionnaire wasn't used.

Seminole County Commission

District 2: No endorsement and no recommendation, but I will be voting for John Horan

Jorge Martos is the tea party candidate. I do not want that at all. John Horan is republican but not as awful.

Opposing view: Howard agrees with me on that point but explains why he is pulling the lever for Martos:

Don't really care much although I'm glad they didn't pull the write-in loophole like they usually do. Horan probably sides with us more but I'm going Martos because I didn't like how they did the tax increase. I would have preferred them doing it right by asking in 2012. I know they had to do it because of the school budget being due but have always been turned off by the establishments power.

August 26 is the primary, but early voting is happening now. You also have until OCTOBER 6 to register to vote before the election.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Rick Scott: Endorsed by Human Trafficker!

While our host gives you the lowdown on who he endorses in various races, you might like to know that Rick Scott has been endorsed by a human trafficker.

Actually, it's also the second time Scott's campaign has had to pull an ad because Scott featured himself with an ex-con. Once more he's the gift that keeps on giving to his opposition.

Tea Party loons won't care about this, of course. They're more concerned that Scott has endorsed "Common Core 2.0." But maybe this will get some higher-morals Independents off Scott's side if the horn is blown loudly enough.

 

Endorsement for School Board Districts: Frank Curcio (1) and Gracia Miller (2)

Both Frank Curcio (District 1) and Gracia Miller (District 2) have been endorsed by Seminole UniServ, the umbrella organization for several groups that support public education. Given the attacks our public schools have been under from the Rick Scott regime, (so he can enrich his failing charter school buddies), we need strong advocates on the board.

Two unions have endorsed Frank Curcio, who is a member of the Science Teacher Association. Frank also wants to take out standardized testing. The union support and his belief in science (which yes, is a thing now I actually have to watch for) means he gets the endorsement. His endorsement also proves that I will back GOP candidates if they are the best in the race.

Besides the Seminole Uniserv endorsement, she is a Democrat so you know she won't put up with indoctrination like this or stupidity like this.

Hattip to Howard Mass and IBHolly

No Endorsement, Just Recommendation: George Sheldon for AG Primary

An endorsement to me means a solid backing. I'll be honest, I don't have as much a strong inclination to George Sheldon over Perry Thurston as I do for who I think will win over Pam Bondi. She is godawful, and I mean really, really godawful. Even rightwing extremists like McCollum occasionally fought for the citizens. PamBo never has. For a position that requires the trust of all Florida citizens, Bondi is the most ideological AG in our nation's history. Members of the Florida and American bar rank her worst in the nation.

PamBo has never taken action against a conservative: whether it be completely ignoring criminals who drew, in secret meetings, illegally gerrymandered districts; or dropping the investigation into Donald Trump's scam college. (Coincidentally, it was dropped at the same moment Trump made a donation to her campaign.)

Both Democrats challenging her are good men; and both have racked up separate endorsements. The Tampa Bay paper loved Thurston's passion, while the Miami Herald loved Sheldon's experience.

In the end, I made my decision based on the numbers. Unfortunately, there has not been a whole lot of polling being done outside of unreliable, wingnut polls like Gravis. However, PPP has polled. Public Policy Polling was ranked the most accurate in the past two elections. Currently, they showed Sheldon with only a 3% deficit with PamBo. Thurston had a 7% deficit. Anything over 5% at this point in the election is difficult unless you have a wave of support after the primary.

Here's the thing: as important as the AG position is, the FL Dem party and the standard donors seem to be hyper-focused on the governor's race. If Thurston had the money Sheldon did; or I believed there would be a floodgate of money and support coming, I would lean towards Thurston. No doubt there will be a boost to the primary victor, but I think it is what it is. For this reason I'm going with Sheldon.

Opposing view: My friend Howard made an excellent point about Perry Thurston:

I've decided to go Perry Thurston over George Sheldon because he might help Broward Turnout for Charlie and even though it's unlikely he will beat Bondi, I like how he talks about how The AG Office would be progressive like in California.

The African-American vote, which needs to be very high for Crist to win, will be encouraged by a very strong, passionate, articulate African-American in a high-profile race. I also agree that a Thurston victory would be more of a help to Crist. I went back and forth on this all day.

At the end of the day, though, I have to base a recommendation on who is best to beat an awful candidate for the position they are running for. I am going with George Sheldon.

Yet know that this is one recommendation that I will not die on the hill for. If Perry Thurston wins, he can expect all I can give to make him AG next year. Next to the governorship, it's the most important race in Florida. We can't let PamBo do any more damage.