Thursday, October 27, 2016

Marco Rubio on the Democrats, Cuba and Myanmar ... by gimleteye

In last night's debate between challenger Patrick Murphy and incumbent US Senator Marco Rubio, the two engaged in spirited exchange on Cuba and Democratic policies loosening the embargo that Florida's junior senator strongly opposes. It is worth looking more closely where Rubio's punches landed wide of the mark.

One of the criticisms against Rubio is that he delivers policy robotically in sound-bites. Rubio's polish in front of the TV camera is key to his attraction to GOP funders. But Cuba is a central theme of Rubio's political life so it makes sense for voters to understand what he said last night.

Rubio claims to be a foreign policy expert, but he betrayed his shallow understanding by comparing the Obama administration opening of relations with Cuba with Myanmar where, according to Rubio, the United States responded to the military dictatorship by incentivizing and calibrating our response based on demonstrated steps toward democracy by generals in power. That's what Obama should have done in Cuba, Rubio asserts.

Rubio knows most Americans couldn't find Myanmar on a map. That's how it goes with Rubio: make the charge, swing from the hip -- most people will be captured by the appearance and not the substance or even to know how far off the mark Senator Rubio's comment landed.

Myanmar is not only half-way around the world; the nation has always existed in the shadow of China, the gargantuan. Myanmar used the rapprochement with the US as a counter-balance to China, (whose investors turned Myanmar's property markets into the hottest in the world).

Rubio's notion that President Obama did something in Myanmar that he should have done in Cuba, ie. put conditions -- a step-by-step approach with military dictators, is just plain wrong. Different part of the world. Different history. Different circumstances.

Marco Rubio supports a failed US-Cuba policy on the embargo that divides Hispanics through wet foot/dry foot and harmed Cubans on the nation where the United States has been the gargantuan.

No one in the Democratic camp argues that generations of Cubans and Cuban Americans were deeply harmed by the brutal dictatorship of the Castros who turned the island nation into a time capsule of communism. No one in the Democratic camp argues that communism was a social and political experiment gone haywire.

But you don't get out of a foreign policy ditch by digging a deeper ditch; exactly the path US foreign policy followed for decades. Credit the Democrats, many Republicans in Congress, but especially President Obama for making that point clear to Americans.

In their hearts, Republican voters know that creating the opportunity for normal relations with Cuba will influence the next generation of Cuban military leaders. So why in the world should Cuban Americans continue to support Marco Rubio, especially given the fact that the candidate HE supports for president, Donald J. Trump, was doing business with Cuba when doing business with Cuba was a flagrant violation of US law and the embargo energizing Cuban Americans?

Rubio, last night, got a laugh when he said of Patrick Murphy's support for the end of the embargo that his challenger was endorsing Trump's behavior.

It was a below-the-belt hit and Rubio smirked when he made it. What Trump did was illegal. He lied, and he is still lying and Marco Rubio supports him. President Obama changed the rules of engagement with Cuba. The law changed. Most Cuban Americans -- and Americans -- support President Obama's initiatives on Cuba, leaving Marco Rubio at the side the road, polishing his sound bites.

For the Miami Herald, Fabiola Santiago this week wrote a scathing editorial, "In supporting Trump, proud Bay of Pigs vets drag themselves into an unworthy battle".

... Donald Trump’s campaign engaged the Bay of Pigs veterans because he’s falling behind in Florida, a must-win state where the Hispanic vote counts, and it’s massively favoring Hillary Clinton, Cuban-Americans included. He needs every single Cuban vote, but major Cuban-American Republican donors are not only voting for Clinton, they’re raising money for her campaign. And all those politicians the Brigade has supported for decades and who now face re-election too? Missing at the Brigade’s Trump event. Talk about a first. The Bay of Pigs Association endorsement doesn’t make any sense at all. It rings false, trite, like the cafecito Trump pretended to sip on his last visit to the Versailles counter while the cameras rolled.

For the next six years, wherever those cameras are rolling, Marco Rubio will not be far behind. Let's hope it is not as US Senator from Florida. Under a Clinton presidency, Patrick Murphy will have a far more influence on foreign policy than our absentee senator. Florida voters should give Murphy that chance.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

CDC CHAIRMAN: We don't have the Technology to Stop Zika Virus. By Geniusofdespair

No Hope on Zika - CDC Chairman Tom Frieden

The CDC Chairman -- the highest level official -- admits all the spraying and other crap we are doing to eradicate the aedes aegypti mosquito will not stop the Zika Virus from spreading. According to the Miami Herald he (Tom Frieden- head of the CDC) said:

Zika will become Endemic.

Welcome to global warming folks. We now have the climate that particular mosquito likes. When we could have stopped it, the County had no funding -- thank you Carlos Gimenez -- Mr. "come from behind" on all problems -- because now it is too late. VOTE FOR RAQUEL REGALADO.

Miami-Dade Voters: Now is the time to send Marco Rubio and his pal, Donald Trump, to the exit ... by gimleteye

gimleteye: Early voting started. The case to vote for Patrick Murphy to be Florida's next US Senator and against incumbent Marco Rubio will never be stronger. A vote for Murphy is a vote for common sense and leadership.

We can't afford another six years of Marco Rubio in the US Senate. Standing in the wings to run against Senator Bill Nelson in 2018, Florida governor Rick Scott, campaign finance chair for Donald Trump.

If Florida voters don't make them LOSERS on November 8, we ALL lose.

The Daily Climate
Opinion: How Gov. Scott quietly stole Florida's future
Oct. 24, 2016

A decade ago Florida led the fight to reduce greenhouse emissions. Now the state is dealing with the debacle of inaction.
By Debbie Harrison Rumberger

MARATHON, Fla.—Less than a decade ago, Florida was poised to become a global leader in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. This was a time of hope—a belief that we could still avoid the most severe impacts of a rapidly warming planet.

The irony of what has happened since makes the ecosystem collapse underway right now throughout south Florida even more heartbreaking.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Pinecrest: Candidate Doesn't Even Know His Own Name. By Geniusofdespair

A candidate for the council in Pinecrest appears not to even know his legal name, he plays very loose with it, why? He is Peter Casablanca and Peter Casablanca Corredera.

On his campaign Facebook page he is:

On the Florida DBPR page his Real Estate Sales license is in a different name.

Note he uses Corredera as his last name. Yes, Peter Casablanca has a better ring to it but is it his legal name?

He did appear to do a name change after a divorce but what is the name -- can't figure this out at all?

On his campaign finance report his name is Peter Casablanca again. Doesn't appear that he legally changed it to this name:
Florida Dept. of State, he again becomes Peter Corredera, this is the business he lists on his campaign forms as his source of income:


Here is an affidavit from his Pinecrest voter file:


Here is his name on his home, registered with the property appraiser for taxing purposes:


Florida Voters Have Another Chance To Show Nation: We are aware, we are woken, and we are not going to take it anymore ... by gimleteye

The GOP has had the run of Florida for decades, notwithstanding victories by President Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012. Yet in the March GOP presidential primary, Republicans roundly rejected the status quo.

Donald Trump won; the "burn-the-house-down" answer for Florida GOP primary voters in Florida.

In this shambolic election, Hillary Clinton made an excellent case to be president of the United States. Moreover, Florida voters could show that Republicans incumbents lost their mandate in both Congress and state legislatures.

In Florida, the GOP held people hostage through opposition to popular votes like Fair Districts. (Vote NO on Amendment 1: it blocks the sun.)

The party that says government should not be in the business of choosing winners and losers is exactly in business to protect winners and damage the chance for losers to gain advantage.

The Republican vision for America claims to protect individual liberties but in Florida as elsewhere it has proven a friend to the concentration of wealth and power at the top. The more pure the orthodoxy, the more benefits will trickle down to the common man and woman.


Through its own actions, the Republican Party has lost its mandate to govern except among the percentage riled or anesthetized by reality television and Fox News.

There will be plenty of time to level criticism against the Democrats, but not now. Donald Trump deserves to be defeated by 10 points in the popular vote. He should bring down GOP control of the Senate and state legislatures as well.

Those Americans interested in the exercise of democracy, of fairness and of equity for all citizens -- irrespective of ethnicity, race, or creed -- should reject Donald Trump and incumbent Republicans.

Floridians not only have a choice in the outcome, two weeks from now, we can show what it means to say, enough is enough.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Eye on Miami and Miami Herald Strongly Recommends Jose Javier Rodriguez and Phillip Brutus for State Senate. By Geniusofdespair

They don't always get it right, but I believe on Jose Javier Rodriguez and Phillip Brutus, the Miami Herald is on target:

Phillip Brutus State Senate District 38
Unlike Ms. Campbell, Mr. Brutus, an attorney, supports the rights of LGBT Floridians, rejecting discriminatory legislation. He says that the poorer areas of this district are not “workforce ready” and he wants to bring more vocational education to those neighborhoods and get businesses involved with high schools students. He also wants residential developers to set aside 25 percent of new building for affordable rentals. He believes in the Second Amendment, but rightly does not support open carry or campus carry. It gives people “a sense of invincibility,” Mr Brutus told the Editorial Board. “Too many things can happen.” He criticizes Rep. Campbell for voting against holding a special session on gun issues.

Mr. Brutus wants the state to confront climate change head on and opposes fracking: “We’ve got to go green.” Though he says he will caucus with the Democrats, Mr. Brutus is running as an NPA candidate — no party affiliation.

His progressive views are more in tune with this large, diverse district.  

The Herald recommends PHILLIP BRUTUS for State Senate District 38.

Jose Javier Rodriguez State Senate District 37
Mr. Rodriguez, 38, contrasts his own background as a former member of the Peace Corps and legal aid lawyer against Sen. Diaz de la Portilla’s work as a lobbyist for powerful interests such as charter schools and developers. His own work, Mr. Rodriguez says, has always served to benefit the public interest. In that vein, he called the Legislature’s unwillingness to expand Medicaid “the biggest catastrophic failure” by lawmakers during his four years as a state representative.

Mr. Rodriguez believes the state has to do more to improve public education, protect the environment and improve the justice system.

This race will be a close call for some voters, as it has been for some interest groups. Local teachers have endorsed Sen. Diaz de la Portilla. But the statewide teachers union has endorsed Mr. Rodriguez. We also give Mr. Rodriguez the edge. He has shown that he is an engaged and articulate lawmaker, willing to work hard for the right causes and to improve Florida. More Democrats like Mr. Rodriguez in the Florida Senate, where Republicans currently hold a 26-14 margin, would bring a better balance to state government.

For State Senate District 37, the Miami Herald recommends JOSE JAVIER RODRIGUEZ.

How The GOP Practices Psychological Warfare On Its Own Voters: Florida's James Madison Institute ... by gimleteye

How Florida's Amendment 1 Blocks The Sun

On its website, the James Madison Institute, a Tallahassee-based conservative foundation, calls itself "a beacon" and “Florida’s free-market think tank”. Now that one of its senior staffers has been caught on tape fronting for a constitutional amendment that inhibits solar power unless it is funneled through Florida's large electric utilities, the James Madison Institute reveals what’s wrong with today’s GOP.

Here is the James Madison Institute's mission:
"Although we work through complicated policy issues, our approach is simple. Focus on policy, not politics – and keep our principles of limited government, personal responsibility and economic freedom front and center. Throughout the years, we’ve remained tried and true -- a constant conscience of Florida’s leaders and a champion for hardworking Floridians who have made this state what it is today. While you pursue your dreams, we work to protect them.”
Protect your dreams? The James Madison Institute has now scrubbed its website and Twitter account of any mention of the fake solar amendment like Lady McBeth compulsively washing her hands after turning her husband into a murderer.

Leaked audio offers new evidence how the James Madison Institute shilled for Florida utilities, misrepresenting the utility-funded Amendment 1 ballot initiative: not only is the constitutional amendment anti-solar, James Madison Institute boasted about its strategy.

Audio obtained by the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) and the Energy and Policy Institute captures James Madison Institute's Vice President Sal Nuzzo explaining how JMI and other Amendment 1 backers successfully misled the public into believing it was pro-solar.

Speaking to other State Policy Network member organizations, Nuzzo, JMI's vice president of policy and director of the center said:
The point I would make, maybe the takeaway, is as you guys look at policy in your state or constitutional ballot initiatives in your state, remember this: solar polls very well. To the degree that we can use a little bit of political jiu-jitsu and take what they’re kind of pinning us on and use it to our benefit either in policy, in legislation or in constitutional referendums if that’s the direction you want to take, use the language of promoting solar, and kind of, kind of put in these protections for consumers that choose not to install rooftop."
So who exactly are the liars at the James Madison Institute, because Vice President Nuzzo was only saying what his board members knew to be true. The board of JMI is loaded with Florida utility executives.

Start with Board Chair, Allan G. Bense. 

Bense was Republican Speaker of the House from 2004 through 2006. He is now on the board of Gulf Power Company that has been eye-ball deep in James Madison Institute for many years. Bense is also chairman of the board of the Florida Chamber of Commerce.

The Chamber of Commerce does not represent the interests of small businesses in Florida. It is a political heavyweight that directs enormous campaign contributions through a Russian doll network of political action committees that serve to cement the privileges of large scale enterprises in Florida. The lessons in Florida's recent political history are clear: when you see the Florida Chamber of Commerce advocating for a constitutional amendment, run for the hills. Conversely, when the Florida Chamber stands in opposition, it is because the proposed constitutional proposal bends towards the interests of voters.

The Florida Chamber is conjoined with Associated Industries of Florida, also run by GOP insiders. Both for example are regular recipients of six figure largesse by special interests like Big Sugar -- whose profits through corporate welfare have been tagged by tax advocate Grover Norquist as "cronyism in its undiluted, inexcusable majesty".

Bense is a trustee of FSU he is a board member of Foundation for Florida’s Future, the Jeb Bush think tank supporting his cratered presidential bid, and serves on the boards of both the Florida Council of 100 and Enterprise Florida, Inc. The Florida Council of 100 and Enterprise Florida are organized to advance the privileges of Florida's GOP elite.

Florida is one of five states that do not allow a property owner to have a third-party installer put solar panels on their roof and sell the power back to them.

If it sounds like the James Madison Institute is against free-markets when they level the playing field and for free-markets when they can be tipped in favor of Big Business, you would be close to understanding how the GOP practices psychological warfare against its own voters.

Amendment 1 is not just a “wolf in sheep’s clothing” to deceive Florida voters. It is embraced by the Florida think tank that advocates limited, free-market policies while cynically supporting centralized, picking-winners-and-losers by insiders.

These are the same forms of misdirection and deception that enraged Florida Republican voters who vaulted Donald Trump above two native sons favored by the political insiders at James Madison to be the next GOP presidential nominee: Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio.

Against this backdrop, it is easy for voters who are paying attention to see that the JMI claim of support for the free market and limited self-government are as fake in Florida as Amendment 1. Republican voters, in particular, ought to be outraged against a rigged system that turns bedrock conservative values into a catch-basin for special interests.

The Miami Herald reported: "According to federal tax documents, JMI has received more than $120,000 from the Charles Koch Institute and Charles Koch Foundation, and Stan Connally, the CEO of Gulf Power, sits on JMI’s board of directors. Gulf Power and its affiliates have contributed more than $2.3 million to the utility-backed amendment, which also has received funding from Florida Power & Light, Duke Energy, Tampa Electric Co., and non-profit groups primarily funded by Exxon and the Koch brothers.”

In November, voters will have a chance to deny Florida's utilities the lock and key to a solar future precisely because if the amendment passes by 60% of the popular vote, it is their lock and key.

If the GOP hopes to regain the trust of Florida voters, it will need to reform policies and practices including think tanks supporting a rigid status quo and pretending to be what they are not.

That "beacon of liberty" on the James Madison Institute website is really a false light set by reef wreckers to lure ships to be smashed, the easier for pirates to plunder and loot.

Allen G. Bense should resign from the James Madison Institute. However, he is doing what big business wants: concentrate power to deform the values, ideals and essential principles of conservative, limited government.

Republican voters have a lot to be dismayed about this election cycle, and the dismay only starts with Amendment 1.

Read more, here:
Bridge Project:
New Yorker investigation into State Policy Network:

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Miami-Dade Voters: The Decision To Unseat Marco Rubio Is Up To You ... by gimleteye

The decision whether or not to unseat Marco Rubio is up to Miami-Dade County voters; more accurately, Republican voters. More accurately still, Hispanic Republican voters.

There is naturally an inclination to vote for Rubio along the lines of ethnic affiliation. (The Miami Herald endorsed Patrick Murphy, Rubio's opponent. El Nuevo Herald, Rubio.)

The weight of evidence, however, is against Marco Rubio.

He has been an empty suit in Washington, DC and misrepresented to Floridians his interest in the Senate, mostly absent while chasing his dream to be the GOP nominee for president. Rubio's was a futile exercise that garnered only 15% of the Republican primary vote in Florida last March.

Florida Republicans rejected Rubio, then. Why should he do better now?

The bottom line: Marco Rubio delivers a good sound bite and stump speech, but he is loyal mainly to his ambition.

There is another calculation that Hispanic Republicans ought to weigh, as well.

Hillary Clinton will be the next president of the United States. Rubio, who stands by Donald Trump -- the man who belittled him --  will have no power in the Senate except to as a symbol for the same failures of leadership eroding the GOP. With another term in the Senate, what can Marco Rubio do for Floridians? Not much.

One would expect Rubio to run to the TV cameras, with little to say for Florida except bluster that ends where it begins: all sound and fury.

Patrick Murphy is the right choice to be Florida's next US Senator. Senator Rubio's part in this shambolic electoral cycle does not deserve the Miami-Dade vote.

Sunday Review
A Chance to Unseat Marco Rubio
The New York Times
OCT. 22, 2016

Just months ago, Senator Marco Rubio was seen by the Republican establishment as one of its best hopes for taking back the White House. Now, Representative Patrick Murphy, a second-term congressman, is within striking distance of defeating Mr. Rubio in the senator’s race to keep his seat.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Patrick Murphy Will Lose to Marco Rubio according to 538 Predictions. By Geniusofdespair

Earlier today Patrick Murphy had an 18.8% of winning. He is actually slipping according to Nate Silver the wunderkind behind 538 Blog.  Don't delude yourselves Democrats. Get on the horn and get your stupid friends to vote. 6 years of Marco Rubio...what could be worse...4 years of Donald Trump.


Lets prove Nate Silver's 538 Prediction on our Senator Choice WRONG. By Geniusofdespair


This is Florida. Let's be those zany, crazy, unpredictable people the rest of the country laughs at and let's prove Nate Silver (predictor extraordinaire) wrong on the Patrick Murphy vs. Stop-O Marco Rubio race.

Let's make Nate eat crow on his prediction. We want the best candidate in spite of the polls. We can do it. What are those clucks on the I-4 Corridor thinking? Too much time at theme parks I think to respond to polls intelligently. Or is it those retired Military lock-step Repubicans in the Panhandle that are skewing the  polls? Even the Miami Herald has had enough of Rubio, recommending Patrick Murphy for our Senator.

All of you: Please band together and don't let Patrick Murphy lose.

I can just see the news: Yeah, Nate Silver can predict like a master, but no one can predict what Floridians are going to do. They are from their own planet: Bizzaro World...and proud of it!

Nate was wrong on Donald Trump in the primary, let him be wrong on Marco. PLEASE!!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Welcome to my World. By Geniusofdespair

Without my glasses,  this is what I see. When I meet you, if I take off my glasses, I am trying to amuse myself, looking at your face with my double vision. The only thing that bothers me is seeing two horizons. Would I text while driving? NEVER EVER, I have enough to contend with...and so do you.

Speaking of nothing important, I am going to switch to something I think that is VERY important to Miami Dade County residents: The County Mayoral Election. I want to emphasize voting in the Mayoral race.

I am not a fan of the current mayor Carlos Gimenez as I think Privatization is really bad (imagine trying to give Donald Trump our Key Biscayne Public Golf course to manage -- yes Mayor Gimenez tried to do that).  He said in a debate that privatization can be done "better, faster, cheaper". But, can you imagine Trump managing our golf course? The golf course would become more private, our costs to use it would sky-rocket, or why else would Trump be interested? The County Commission stopped this boondoggle. Privatization is"Better, faster, cheaper" my ass. And if privately things can be done better, faster, cheaper what does that say about your Management skills of the County Mayor Gimenez?

Mayor Gimenez has Pepe Diaz, the dumbest and most clueless County Commissioner, doing a robocall for him. Really, Pepe? I had high hopes for Gimenez in 2011 but he immediately came into office and gave obscene salaries to his hires and little by little, he has become the lobbyist's dream machine. Gimenez has made his friends rich and given them special favors. He doesn't do competitive hiring, he picks insiders and shuffles them around. Gimenez is arrogant to people at public meetings (like the meeting that were held when he tried to cut funding to libraries). It is unbecoming.  He acts as if he knows it all. He doesn't.

I have voted for Raquel Regalado.  And I stand by my vote. I saw her in person without my glasses and she still looked pretty good!

Not convinced? Try this one.