Thursday, September 01, 2016

The Now or Neverglades Declaration Is Here To Stay ... by gimleteye

In primary election wrap-ups, prolific Tallahassee blogger Peter Schorsch takes aim at the Now or Neverglades Declaration, writing that primary day losers include:

“NowOrNeverGlades” supporters — Candidates who signed the petition to buy land from Florida sugar-cane growers, coincidentally or not, caught toes on the hurdle and fell on their faces. Chief among them was Bernie Sanders acolyte Tim Canova, who beat the drum to blame Big Sugar. Others were Chauncey Goss, Mark Freeman, Annette Taddeo, Jason Maughan, Augie Ribeiro, Jason Pizzo, Andrew Watt and Tinu Pena.

Over 100 elected officials have signed the Now or Neverglades Declaration.

To attach Tim Canova's loss to the Declaration, really? Canova, a first-time candidate, ran a credible, bootstraps campaign against an incumbent with deep roots and decades of history in Broward County.

Brian Mast, GOP candidate for Florids's 18th Congressional District, was among winners Schorsch neglected in his context of the Declaration and bungled metaphor.

After winning, Mast told Breitbart, "... the main issues in the campaign, where he connected with the voters were environment disaster created by the Army Corps of Engineers, when they deliberately forced freshwater from Lake Okeechobee into the salt water estuaries along Florida’s Treasure Coast and the criminal mismanagement of the local Veterans Affairs facilities." (for a video of Brian Mast, who faces Democrat Randy Perkins in the general election, signing the Declaration, click here.)

The Now or Neverglades Declaration calls for acquisition of lands from Big Sugar to spare Florida's rivers and bays and the Everglades from the pollution spewing out of Lake Okeechobee. Moreover, the Declaration backs the assertion by more than 200 scientists that Everglades restoration depends on significant additional acreage for water treatment and cleansing marshes to be removed from sugarcane production or multi-billion dollar taxpayer commitments will come to naught.

Big Sugar, by the way, is not opposed to selling land as it has in the past. Its entire strategy is to extract the highest possible price from taxpayers even if it means burning Florida politics to the ground.

Big Sugar's political team plays the game to win, but when Schorsch writes, "This talent is paying dividends", come on: Big Sugar has been Florida's political piggy bank for decades. Big Sugar takes taxpayer largesse and gives dividends back to politicians who vote against taxpayer interests. How much talent does it require to buy results when you can hand out five and six-figure PAC contributions like Tic Tacs?

Big Sugar: smart, strong and battle-ready, according to Schorsch -- whose annual review of Tallahassee influencers is coffee-table ready and filled with industry and lobbyist advertisers -- has his own context, but the fair assessment belongs to GOP anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist.

Norquist calls the corporate welfare enabling Big Sugar and its stable of politicians: "cronyism in its undiluted, inexcusable majesty".

Big Sugar can win elections the old fashioned way, but Florida's distressed waterways and Everglades underscore why the Now or Neverglades Declaration is here to stay.


Anonymous said...

Canova should be commended for his courage in going up against DWS and the machine. I'm NPA but lean Dem. I have never liked DWS. She is a poor leader with little rally power.

David A. Urich said...

Yes - the Now or Neverglades Declaration shows WHO is SERIOUS about CLEAN WATER! The WHOLE Ft. Myers Beach City council has SIGNED it, as well as Cape Coral City Council. Hope that Ft. Myers City council will sign when they get a presentation! David A. Urich

Daisy Eloise Applewhite said...

The mention of “taxpayer largesse”, isn't accurate. I have to say it's not largesse because we have no choice but to pay our axes. I am concerned with how taxpayer money is spent which is why I don't agree with the conclusion that Florida has to purchase land owned by sugar companies. There is land, over 100,000 acres that the public already owns that can be put to use for water storage and treatment. In my opinion, buying more land would be a waste of taxpayer money. I'd rather see the money go to funding CERP projects, already on the books and some in a state of in-completion.

Anonymous said...

It's all well and good to fight a big industry and rail against “cronyism” but when it comes to taking land that people depend on for their living...that's another story. The Now or Neverglades declaration
calls for taking land from individuals. The sugar industry would be fine, but the individuals would suffer under such a plan. This fight over how to improve the quality is leaving out the most important part - the people. Now or Neverglades is a political ploy hatched by a less-than-reputable group, Bullsugar. I hope Floridians will reconsider their support for it.