Stepping Out On a Limb: Part Two

Politically speaking, I’ve had a very good week.  My only disappointment was that the Republicans did not allow Senator Jim Bunning to continue speaking for as long as he wanted.  Because really, the longer he talked, the more people started paying attention and got the picture of what the Republicans really, really stand for. 

I could just picture the Republican powerbrokers standing behind the curtain, saying  “Jim! Shhh!  Yes, this is what we really mean, but you aren’t supposed to say it out loud!  You’re making us look bad!”

Jim:  “But I thought, I thought…this is what you wanted.”

Republican Leadership:  “Shut the hell up and sit down.”   

What I’d really like to know is how they got him to stop.  What dire consequences could there be?  Perhaps at a later date it will be the subject of a Ludlum novel. 

My personal little victory this week was changing the mind of one (one!) person regarding Florida’s Amendment 4.  And if you don’t think that’s hard, then consider the state of politics in the U.S. in general. Words may never hurt us, it takes sticks and stones, but I’m uneasy about about the words these days.  Words lead to actions, which is not to say I’m opposed to free speech in any way.  The words just sometimes make me nervous. 

So we will now return to Stepping Out On a Limb, Part One, and in particular, the final comment there.  ptfan1 writes:  “If we were in a true debate forum instead of a blog this is where I would burry [sic] your position as spurious and contradictory”. 

Never mind my position, which is neither spurious nor contradictory.  I have to ask:  what satisfaction would that give him?  The burying part reminds me of Kruschev famously pounding his shoe on the table at the U.N. and we all know how that turned out.  Again, what would be the goal?  Proving that he is smarter?  Has more experience?  Just “gets it” better?  What would he hope my response would be? 

How could you ever hope to sway me to your way of thinking by insulting me or acting superior?  In short, what is the goal?  If your goal is to prove your superiority…you already lost.


11 responses to “Stepping Out On a Limb: Part Two

  1. I know my spelling sucks I rely on spell check and others to correct it. Thanks for doing that.

    It’s your blog so you are free to say whatever you wish. Thank goodness.

    I know that even if I point out what is happening in our legislature this past week regarding the 8 year old constitutional class size amendment it won’t translate to credulity because your mind is closed. It is a classic example of citizens voting with their emotions and not considering the cost or “unintended consequences” of it “feels” good man.

    Or that the bullet train amendment that couldn’t shoot straight just got a pledge of 1.3 billion of stimulus money (8 years after it became a dysfunctional law) and still needs twice that much from a state facing a $4billion deficit.

    So you and others may well lead the campaign to success and then move away leaving those remaining to waste untold resources to change the change. The HD change simply won’t work (for reasons previously mentioned). I know it won’t work from hands on government experience not from talking points supplied to me from other people. It won’t work because it brings greater chaos not order.

    It is the circular logic of Catch 22…….”things are messed up so lets mess them up more and call it good……..lets punish the doers and throw the legislative process into worse chaos than the representative government we now have.”

    Gotta love the democratic process.

    It’s not really an insult to speak openly and deal with reality. You have no logic to offer only passion and cleverness. Sometimes man is so busy being clever he forgets to be wise. (Don’t remember who said that.)

    I don’t speak Russian.

  2. ptfan1 says: ” I know it won’t work from hands on government experience .”

    All the more reason to not believe a word that you say.

    When government officials fear something that gives the public more control, it speaks volumes about government.

  3. Do you want them making your land use decisions?

    Commissioner Mary McCarty U.S. District Judge Donald Middlebrooks sentenced former County Commissioner Mary McCarty to three-and-a-half years in prison for misusing her office and illegally bene-fiting by $300,000. She also was fined $100,000.
    Former County Commissioner Warren Newell was sentenced to five years for lining his pockets through secret payments and benefits. He is still in the Palm Beach County Main Jail.
    Former County Commissioner Tony Masilotti, began serving a five-year sentence in August 2007 for engaging in secret land deals that netted him nearly $10 million in illicit profits…Investigators uncovered a six-year conspiracy … persistently used his power to advance land deals that enriched him and his family.
    Former West Palm Beach City Commissioner Ray Liberti was released from prison in May after serv-ing 18 months. Prosecutors said he used his influence to cite a West Palm Beach nightclub and massage par-lor for code violations to intimidate the owners into selling their businesses at a below-market price to buyers he had chosen. In return, the buyers gave Liberti an expensive watch and paid him $66,000, most of it in cash delivered in a shaving kit.
    Former West Palm Beach Commissioner Jim Exline was released in February after serving a 10-month prison sentence. Exline failed to report on his tax return a $50,000 payment from a developer who prosecu-tors said wanted the commissioner’s help securing city approvals for a restaurant.
    Broward County Commissioner Josephus Eggelletion’s, 20-year career in politics ended in tears and disgrace as the Broward commissioner became the first county official to plead guilty in a wide-ranging federal corruption investigation and resigned. Eggelletion, who admitted taking part in a plan to launder what he thought was dirty money, faces up to five years in prison and $250,000 in fines.
    Two suspended Levy County commissioners were found guilty Friday evening of conspiracy and soli-citing bribes in return for approval of what they believed was a new development project. The jury delibe-rated for about five hours at the federal courthouse in Gainesville before arriving at the decision against William Samuel “Sammy” Yearty, 63, and Robert Anthony “Tony” Parker, 49.
    Two Dixie County men were convicted as part of a federal undercover investigation into corruption by public officials. Former Cross City police chief and suspended town council member Marcellus Dawson and the city’s public works superintendent, Johnny Miller Greene, were found guilty as charged. Both men were convicted of conspiracy and of accepting bribes. Greene was also convicted of lying to the FBI about the $600 he was convicted of taking.
    Willie Dewey “Billy” Keen Jr. a former Dixie County zoning official, was sentenced to 6 1/2 years in federal prison and three years of probation for his convictions on charges of conspiracy, soliciting bribes and two counts of lying to federal agents.
    Two former Dixie county commissioners, John Lee “Big John” Driggers, 61, and Alton James Land, 68, are scheduled to be sentenced on similar charges in January. During an August trial, witnesses detailed how the men accepted money in exchange for promising favorable decisions by the Dixie County Commis-sion on specific development issues.
    Former Senate President W.D. Childers, who served in the Senate from 1970 to 2000 walked out of a prison work-release center Wednesday, ending nearly three years of confinement on a bribery conviction.
    Suspended St. Johns County Commission Chairman Tom Manuel pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing in U.S. District Court on an official corruption charge of accepting $60,000 in bribes.
    A former Miami City Commissioner, Humberto E. Hernandez, pleaded guilty to a Federal charge of conspiracy to commit bank, wire and mail fraud.
    Former Tamarac Mayor Says developer offered him a $200,000 cash payoff if he would agree to remove his wife from the mayor’s race.

  4. Bett, the Santa Rosa County example (Childers) is the one with which I’m most familiar, maybe because of its proximity to Tallahassee.
    And yet, I have trouble with the “throw the bums out” solution, because you largely end up with new bums. Who will go from being the darlings of the electorate to the people who are being called upon to be evicted, simply because of their position and authority, even if they are sincere.
    It’s the process or the structure that is at fault.
    I and many other people I know are supporters of the Hometown Democracy Amendment, not because we think it will be the solution to all Florida’s woes, but because it’s a tiny step forward in oversight.
    The point of this entry was more to highlight the attack approach, which does nothing to convince thoughtful people to consider your point of view.
    When you say that I have only passion and cleverness to bring to a subject (which I’m thinking is kind of a compliment) but no logic, you say more about yourself than you do about me.

  5. Yup, a tiny step forward. I agree we will get new bums, I also have no faith that the new ones will be any better, perhaps at first, but they get co-opted all too quickly.

    My post of the Rogues Gallery was to illustrate that point.

    What do you mean that I say you have onlypassion and cleverness… All I did was post a list of convicted crooks, with no commentary, I said nothing about you.

    However passion and cleverness is not a bad thing, I wish more people had them.

    The last 30 years has been a disaster of overdevelopment. A4 will at least give the voters the ability to say yes or no to a land use change in their city. And, I hope, lead to a more considered look at development in Florida as a whole by everyone.

  6. No no no, Bett, not you 🙂 You didn’t say it…read the first comment from ptfan1 regarding passion and cleverness.
    Normally “clever” would be a compliment, but in this case I take “clever” to mean “weaselly”. As if I can discombobulate you with words. Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee, so to speak.
    I’ve lived in six different states, and Florida is my favorite, as long as we don’t pave over every inch of it. Which we are in the process of doing.

  7. > It’s the process or the structure that is at fault.

    Keep walking in that direction FN. I will welcome you at the end of the road… which is that the structure needs to be torn down! 😉

  8. masteroftheuniverse

    Jesus saves, but the devil delivers:)

  9. “And thus I clothe my naked villany
    With old odd ends stolen out of holy writ;
    And seem a saint, when most I play the devil. ”
    Richard III, Act I, sc iii

    It is always people that are at fault. There is no process without people.

    Here is one study that attempts to quantify the possibilities of enabling Amendment 4.

  10. I object….

  11. I wasn’t able to access this article for some reason, not that I haven’t read pro- and anti-Amendment 4 articles ad nauseum. As you would say, the emotionality on both sides is mind-boggling. So far it seems to me that the Anti-4’s are more willing to lie.

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