Friday, July 29, 2016

Donald Trump and Gov. Rick Scott: Too busy to fix Florida's water quality catastrophe ... by gimleteye

Algae clogged canal draining/irrigating EAA sugarcane field
When GOP candidate Donald Trump was asked at a Miami press conference yesterday about Florida's water quality crisis and toxic algae puking out of Lake Okeechobee, Trump didn't default to: "Trust me." He answered that that problem was something he wanted to learn about.

Trump, a part-time resident of Florida for decades, owns a 20 acre Palm Beach estate, Mar-A-Lago. The property is a focus of Palm Beach high society, including Big Sugar billionaires like the Fanjuls who parade at Christmas time. The point is that Donald Trump certainly knows about Big Sugar's influence on Florida water management. It is inescapable as the fresh air in Palm Beach blowing off the Atlantic.

Trump also just accepted Gov. Rick Scott's decision to be the national chairman for the superPAC supporting his presidential candidacy.

The Florida governor is firmly embedded in Big Sugar's sticky embrace.

Literally and figuratively, Rick Scott is adhered to Big Sugar's side. For Trump, taking a position against Big Sugar requires some shucking and jiving.

Consider: Scott's appointees on environmental commissions like the board of the South Florida Water Management District have defended Big Sugar's prerogatives and domination of water policies and practices with more arrogance and disrespect for public critics than ever before. Even Jeb Bush's appointees pale in comparison to the current regime, hiding behind an Iron Curtain of denial that their mismanagement of the water crisis put Floridians' health, billions in property values and a tourism-based economy at severe risk.

Gov. Rick Scott's policies and practices have plunged counties that lean Republican in election years in a bath of toxic pollution.

Scott, who plans to run for US Senate in two years, will have a harder time wriggling out of this dilemma than he did with his own company. Before being elected governor of Florida, Scott skipped away from the health care company he founded as it faced charges and ultimately paid to the federal government the largest civil fine ever assessed for abuses related to Medicare reimbursements.

Donald Trump discovered in Rick Scott his mirror image without seeing what everyone else sees.

To his view, Scott is a successful businessman whose self-belief lead him to a high elected office with no prior public service experience. Others don't see Gov. Scott that way at all. Through Florida's water quality catastrophe, these voters now see a leader whose views were formed through the porthole window of a private jet flying at 35,000 feet and never changed.

This week, the US Army Corps of Engineers sent a remarkable letter to Congressman Patrick Murphy, in response to his request that the Corps initiate at once, the necessary studies for land suitable to storage and cleanse polluted Lake Okeechobee on property now owned by Big Sugar. "The Army is prepared to initiate this study quickly, once a non-Federal sponsor for the study is identified."

By non-Federal sponsor, the Corps means: the State of Florida and Gov. Rick Scott who is busy raising money for Trump's superPAC and leaning on Big Sugar billionaires for campaign contributions.

Donald Trump doesn't need to "learn" anything about Florida's water quality catastrophe. Hobnobbing with the Fanjuls and other sugarcane growers all these years at Mar-A-Lago: he knows they've been making money the old fashioned way.

He should come out right away and say it: let's pay the Big Sugar billionaires for their land in the EAA and fix this problem in Florida. At the same time, end the corporate welfare in the Farm Bill, what Grover Norquist calls "cronyism in its inexcusable, undiluted majesty".

Make the Everglades, Florida's bays, rivers and estuaries, great again: buy the land, send clean, fresh water south. #NowOrNeverglades #FixFlorida

US Army Corps of Engineers Response to Congressman Patrick Murphy on Eaa 7.26.16 by Alan Farago on Scribd


Prem said...

Doesn't the president have authority to command the US Army Cops to conduct the study?

Anonymous said...

Missed this.

Another was Alfonso Fanjul, one of four brothers who run a Florida-based sugar and real estate conglomerate and are politically active in the state's Cuban-American community.

Fanjul, whose family subsidiaries include Domino Sugar and Florida Crystals, was a Florida co-chairman for Bill Clinton's first presidential campaign in 1992, supported Hillary Clinton's 2008 run and has donated between $100,000 and $250,000 to the Clinton Foundation. Florida Crystals spent $1 million lobbying the Obama administration in 2011 and nearly that amount in 2009, 2010 and 2012 on issues related to sugar and its use as a biofuel.

Fanjul met Hillary Clinton for a half hour in October 2009. Gaston Cantens, a spokesman for the firm, said Fanjul sought the 2009 meeting because he was having "customs issues coming in and out of the country and wanted help." Cantens said Fanjul's entry and exit problems eased.

Clinton met Fanjul again at a 10-minute "pull-aside" during a Brookings Institution luncheon in June 2012. The event honored Saban and his wife, Cheryl, who both bundled donations to Hillary Clinton's 2008 campaign and whose family foundation has donated between $5 million and $10 million to the Clinton Foundation.

fdsdfsdfs said...

I'd rather vote for a leader like Trump than a liar cheater like Hillary.

Anonymous said...

Do you think those zika mosquitoes could live and breed in that water? Or would it kill them?

Anonymous said...

How could Floridians elect a Rick Scott? Will these same Floridians elect Donald Trump?

Anonymous said...

One needs to read the Army letter without rose colored glasses and wish full thinking in the head.
It clearly states they are prepared to delay study to 2021, qualifying it by non Gov source money may be found. Plus the Core is salivating at all the BILLIONS flowing through their sticky hands. I probably missed a few other pointers, but the Core is clearly not working for we the people, rather we the Core.

I see it that noting benefiting the population will happen through these chanels.

mpotter said...

Great answer to the Zika virus problem, make the water so toxic that nothing can live in it.... I wonder what the LD50 for Benzene is for mosquitoes.