Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Former Homestead Mayor Steve Bateman Is All Tears as he Awaits Sentencing. By Geniusofdespair

Former Homestead mayor speaks about conviction on corruption charges If you don't see video try this link

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player
Meanwhile, Attorney Ben Kuehne's other client, Michael Pizzi, is trying to get the Miami Lakes position of Mayor back...armed with a harshly worded opinion to Rick Scott from the Florida Supreme Court.

Flights to and from Ebola stricken nations? not so much … by gimleteye

The state of the world in a map: this morning's real time flight data. (courtesy of FlightRadar24)

Picture of the day: County Commissioner Javier Souto Alert Guy. By Geniusofdespair

No that is not County Commissioner Javier Souto sitting up in his coffin. It is him sleeping on the dais in September. He is waaay past his prime and pretty much an embarrassment.  But he was on the right side of the ban on fences in front yards, the ordinance Lynda Bell got repealed. That should be revisited.

  Good to know how alert the guy is. The public must have been speaking, he is all ears for developers.

Law Enforcement Discussion Group Targets Miami-Dade County. By Geniusofdespair

Leo Affairs.Com is a National blog/website/message board that identifies itself as the voice of Law Enforcement Online. They had a thread about Miami that I think you would all find worth reading, not surprising most were anonymous postings, so take what is said in that spirit. There is usually some truth in what is posted anonymously but don't take it as gospel. Their mission statement:
LEOAFFAIRS.COM™ got its start as an Officer Rights website, but soon became aware of the need for LEOs to talk candidly about law enforcement related topics without the fear of repercussion.  Thus, our Message Board area was born.
LEOAFFAIRS.COM™ basically consists of a Website and a Message Board area.  
Here is a post from 9/29/2014 with 2 comments:

38 transfers at Narcotics and ECU-the latest bureaus to be decimated by Mayor Gimenez

Once again the transfer grim reaper has gotten hold of our department. Late today, members of the Narcotics and ECU bureaus were scrambling to "find new homes" after being told they will be transferred in the immediate future. Of course for the most part these selective transfers are surgical in nature and target senior members of this department who are either on the drop or near their 25 year retirement date. The way Old Toothless sees it, when those guys opt for retirement he can employ three rookies off the street for what it costs to pay a senior member of this department. Sad thing is the experience loss in irreplaceable and it inevitably leads to a much younger department built on the image of our infamous deputy director. I truly hope that after putting in a full career in this department those young men and women who now come into this job are not cast aside as we currently are by some future mayor and forced to retire by an equally obtuse group of administrators.

Isn't there a drug-gang turf war going? Why the hell would you transfer all of the cops outta narcotics and gangs.

Because Gimenez does not give a damn about the turf-drug war going on in Black neighborhoods. Gimenez' interests lie with the "beautiful People" from Brickell and other affluent areas. Appointing J. D. Patterson MDPD director was an astute political move. Would the Black community criticize one of their own for being utterly inept? Hardly! For Gimenez, Patterson is and will continue to be an insurance policy. This is one of the many reasons why Gimenez must be RECALLED!

Is your in-box stuffed with campaign money appeals? … by gimleteye

The 2014 election cycle will go down in history.

One reason this election cycle is exceptional has to do with email.

If you ever gave political contributions over the web, this is the election cycle where the parties mastered algorithms to trigger a merciless assault of your in-box based on your giving history on the web.

If there was an appeal to fear that could be made in a word or two, to get your money on the web, it was used.

If there was an appeal to catastrophe that could be made in a word or two, to authorize your credit card or Paypal account, it was used.

If there was an appeal that you hadn't given yet, or had given lightly, or had ignored prior urgent emails from the Pope to the Emperor, it was used.

By the time the clock struck One, I was convinced this blatant, perverse assault on privacy was designed by an infiltrator from the opposition. A double agent tasked to suppress voters as cheaply as possible.

We always sigh, 'enough is enough!', but when it comes to money in American politics it is evident that enough is never enough.

The upcoming mid-term election is the most important in a generation. The flood of dark corporate money to the extremist right is driving a massive push for small donations.

Some of the email solicitations read like extortion. This feeling of violation competes with anger that one has to tamp down one's fury because the result of the upcoming elections could bring even worse to our nation.

I, for one, cannot wait for the election to be over. My in-box can't take it anymore.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Reminder Orchids and Onions Meeting is TONIGHT! By Geniusofdespair

Please try to attend to honor these worthy people who get an orchid and see who gets the onion for being a general pain in the ass.  All are welcome to this event.

Friends of Ludlam Trail Ask You to Please Attend Ludllam Trail Meetings! Guest Post

Reminder: Meetings to Decide Fate of Ludlam Trail:

September 30, 6:30 p.m. Westchester Community Council (10); Ruben Dario Middle School, 350 NW 97 Avenue

October 20, 2 p.m. Planning Advisory Board; County Commission Chamber, 111 NW 1 Street
Email Commissioner Suarez, Commissioner Sosa, and Mayor Gimenez, and let them know we want a linear park and trail!

First Community Council Voted to Transmit with Recommendation of DENIAL! Two more to go!

Friends of the Ludlam Trail urges you to attend one of the upcoming Community Council meetings (listed to the left) where the future of the Ludlam Trail may be in question. FECI is seeking an amendment to the Comprehensive Development Master Plan (CDMP) that will upzone the land and allow over 2,300 residential units to be built directly on the corridor. If this actually gets built it will have substantial impacts on traffic, community services, and the environment.

Despite seeking a significant bonus to their development capacity, there has been NO public planning process, nor has any plan been presented publicly that explains the project!

The proposal leaves many questions in the minds of FOLT members. What happened to the rail-to-trail and linear park that was proposed by Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation, and Open Space Department? How can the land be rezoned with no master plan or public process? Review the proposal by following this link and let us know what you think.  190 pages...really!

GENIUS SAID: I think it is great, but I am not going to read 190 pages, I am just going by those I know who are supporting it.

Monday, September 29, 2014

The Latest From the Power Struggle For County Commission Chair. The Lobbying has Begun. By Geniusofdespair

Rebeca Sosa: Miami Dade County Commission Chair

They might not know who it is going to be the next Chair at the County but I think I know. Pepe Diaz won't be -- he hasn't had his epiphany yet. Taking too long -- and everyone will think he is too stupid to not have heeded God's warnings to him. Work on that transformation Pepe, then maybe next time.

Sally Heyman yells too much. I heard that Javier Souto is deathly afraid she is going to slug him when he goes into one of his long winded rants. He asked to be put on the other side of Zapata so he is afforded some protection by Juan. So forget both Souto and Heyman. I, however, would love to see Souto as the chair. Commission meetings would be 12 hours minimum. Such torture, such fun.

It won't be Juan Zapata, he disagrees too much although he and the mayor stirring it up would be fun to watch. I remember when Arthur Teele and Joe Carollo almost got into a fistfight on the City of Miami Dais. They both menacingly stood up to have a go at it. Those were the days. We need more of that. I had my money on the solid bodied Teele at the time, although Carollo was feisty and maybe faster.  In County politics I definitely would bet on Zapata over the Mayor.

I don't think it will be Xavier Suarez as we usually go Black, Hispanic Black, Hispanic.

So my best guess is Commissioner Audrey Edmonson. She is no longer one of the unreformable majority. She understands the manifestation of the divine nature of the UDB, Pepe. She finally realized that her district was being robbed and neglected by over-development out West. That got her off the bad list that Pepe Diaz is still on.

Audrey Edmonson: Next Miami Dade County Chair?

Vice chair? I think it will be Sally Heyman. She has been on the Commission a zillion years and we usually go white on Vice Chairs. Daniella Levine Cava would be a long shot, but so was Bell.

Rebeca (one 'C') did/is doing a good job. I think she will be running for Mayor next.

Nice Dress Audrey

Monday morning: here's what we are reading -- Bernie Sanders, Peter Van Buren, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Citizens United … by gimleteye

Thomas Frank interviews Senator Bernie Sanders at Salon:

What I am telling you, as somebody who likes Obama and respects Obama, is that the key mistake that I believe he made, and it’s perfectly understandable, is he got into office, and he said, two years after he was in, “I’m gonna sit down and negotiate with the Republicans. I know I can’t get everything. We’ll work on some kind of compromise.” What he didn’t catch on to is that the Republicans had no intention of compromising with him and they have no intention of compromising at all. They have an agenda. It is an extreme right wing agenda backed by the Koch brothers and other billionaires, and the only way you defeat that right-wing agenda is when the American people rise up and demand real change. It can’t be done within the confines of Congress. It has to be part of a strong and active grassroots movement. Do you understand what I’m saying here?

Peter Van Buren, first published in Tomgram, "Apocalyse Now: Iraq edition":

If there is a summary lesson here, perhaps it’s that there is evidently no hole that can't be dug deeper. How could it be more obvious, after more than two decades of empty declarations of victory in Iraq, that genuine "success," however defined, is impossible? The only way to win is not to play.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg in The New Republic:

If there was one decision I would overrule, it would be Citizens United. I think the notion that we have all the democracy that money can buy strays so far from what our democracy is supposed to be.

From The SaintPetersBlog: "Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam took in $51,607 during the weeklong period, bringing his total to almost $2.67 million, reports show. Thad Hamilton, Putnam’s Democratic opponent, brought in $435 during the period, for an overall total of $20,323.

In the race for attorney general, incumbent Pam Bondi raised $10,750 Sept. 13-19, giving her an overall total of $1.91 million. Bondi spent $576,041 as of Sept. 19. Bondi faces … Democrat George Sheldon, who took in another $12,015 during the period, reporting overall contributions of $615,855."

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Sorry to see this story: pay cut at Tampa Bay Times … by gimleteye

I'm not sure I agree with Peter Schorsch's blog assessment of shortcomings of the Tampa Bay Times. He writes, "Today’s pay cut announcement reminds us that the Tampa Bay Times is the Boston Celtics of regional newspapers." Meaning, the paper has been resting on its laurels.

For seven years now we've been at our blog, Eye On Miami, and ours is a frequent one-way dialogue with our city's newspaper of note: The Miami Herald.

We started writing, believing that maybe the Herald editors (publisher/s?) would see there is a dedicated audience for strong local content bearing a sharp, critical eye (hence, gimleteye). Alas. We were wrong.

The Herald has been less and less relevant, as financial pressures erode Miami's only daily newspaper (although the publishers and top line executives never seem to suffer). Part of what keeps us going is that there are other newspapers in Florida where tough-minded editorial content seeps throughs; the Tampa Bay Times being first and foremost.

Now the Times, owned by the non-profit Poynter Foundation, is contracting (read, reporter salaries). Nothing good came from the Herald's contraction, and nothing good will come from the Times'.

In a fair and equitable democracy, there would be a public clamor for print journalism above and beyond the stipulations of the so-called free market.  I don't know if that discussion will ever happen in the United States …

By Peter Schorsch on September 18, 2014
st. petersburg times

It is another dark day at 490 First Avenue South, the headquarters of the struggling Tampa Bay Times. CEO and Publisher Paul Tash lowered the boom with a memo outlining a 5 percent pay cut for all staff — or whatever staff is left after forced layoffs further decimate the newspaper.

It’s so bad at the Times, which is facing a 2016 deadline to pay back a $28 million loan from high-interest lender Boston-based Crystal Financial LLC, is warning employees to take the blue pill, resign voluntarily now and receive 13 weeks severance pay or take the red pill, take your chances and see your severance package capped at eight weeks.