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Robert Mongomery: Rick Scott: Will Florida Do It Again

The election of Rick Scott as Governor of Florida, was a masterful move of one millionaire to guile a majority of people hoping for a political outsider that would espouse the virtues of God and limited government. He is a bald headed white guy willing to say all of the right things at the right time, and in a language people, who like to refer to themselves as conservatives, want to hear. What they got was a corporatist who would champion the cause of deep south politics, “Tea Party Style”, and the former employee of George W Bush would bring the state into a new age of crony-corporatist government with a little verbal nods to Christianity and covert bigotry for good measure.

Published July 5, 2014 in Opinion      30 Comments    Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article


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But that was 2010, and since then it is arguable that the Floridian between the major, and questionably, civilized urban centers, got what they asked for. They got a governor who would protect civil liberties by requiring welfare recipients to submit to drug testing in order to receive benefits: a smashing success. Who’d have thought “so many” drug abusers would be removed from welfare rolls by such a masterful move. It was reported that roughly 108 of 4086 people on state welfare failed drug testing, and has, by reports cost the state roughly $400,000 for reimbursing the fee charged and the resulting legal battles with the ACLU that led to Scott’s law being stricken earlier this year. But never fail, Rick Scott has vowed that homes and workplaces in the State of Florida deserve to be drug free and, despite the inconvenience that “rule of law” provides, will continue to champion Conservative values - whatever they may be.

As most, so called, Conservatives, Rick Scott is also the education governor who would liberate the children of Florida from the tyranny of union thug teachers and federal education mandates. His answer: charter schools. Well actually, and I tarry, Scott in an open letter asked that the public accept the maxim, supported by the hard right, to move federal fund to religious based schools which was rejected by voters in 2012. But the move towards privatization of schools isn’t going to stop at public rejection. SB 850 - still on the table - has been addressed currently by the Florida Education Association in an open letter calling for Scott to veto it as unfair in that public funds will be allocated to unaccountable private schools at the expense of public schools. So, in other words, it isn’t acceptable to take public funds to expand Medicaid, or to build a high speed rail, but it is okay for the public to fund religious schools.

Charter schools are getting funding even now in Florida, championed by the right, despite many studies indicating that these privatization schemes are failing. The Orlando Sentinel reported that only 12 percent of students are reading at grade levels in these schools, despite 1.5 billion being poured into 300 charters in the state, serving 92,000 students. Despite the low amount of students being served they still make up 25% of failing grades among Florida schools. Recently in the Tampa Tribune, reported the hypocrisy that free public schools are held to, albeit stupid, federal and state standards whilst private charter schools aren’t and the lack of success shows. Moreover, it is also reported that although Florida law doesn’t allow charter schools to issue bonds, charter school debt - remember business is supposed to act more efficiently than government - is being commoditized by Charter School USA, thus creating more opportunities for frauds in the financial services sector to make a little more money at society’s expense. What is Rick Scott’s answer: more of the same.

Of course the assault against people who may not vote for Scott, or his ilk, has been thwarted despite many attempts to purge voter rolls by the courts - who incidentally opened the can of worms to begin with for those who remember. The polls, according to publicpolicypolling.com, have him at roughly a consistent 35% among people unaffected by potential purges. It seems that even the average voters isn’t impressed with tax cuts for corporations and the modest 42 cent an hour “living wage” increase passed on top of the federal minimum of $7.25 an hour for Florida workers, attempts at privatizing Medicaid, and 7% reduction in unemployment isn’t enough to herald him as a local Ronald Reagan of sorts. According to many Republicans, another term one has to use loosely, unemployment was at 11% under current hopeful Charlie Crist now running as a Democrat, who incidentally happened to be the seated governor at the time the “Great Recession” hit the state. His argument that austerity - reducing the deficit - has done much to bring back the economy. It has brought back the economy for the wealthy in that services are being privatized and those left who can be taxed are paying less for government. Even the average Tea partier has to ask themselves, “If the economy in Florida has improved so dramatically, why aren’t people feeling it?” They might then look at Rick Scott’s poll numbers and find a justification for his general lack of support.

Rick Scott represents the “Khaki-Set”: the suburbanite in the gated community whose wife sports a bleached bob and kids who barely notice he’s alive, the repressed cracker who clutches his flag, gun, and KKK hood and is resentful because a government bureaucrat chose a “welfare queen” over him, or her, for food stamps once, the minister who still believes that good health and poverty reduction is just a prayer away, the white collar worker who really thinks his company’s success depends on virtual impunity to law, ethics, and humane treatment of people and the small-time shop keeper who believes that the only thing holding him back from realizing his potential in a capitalistic society is the 25 cents he pays in fuel taxes, and those pesky employees he has to pay a wage.

So what is left for Rick Scott? Recently he has passed a rather weak acceptance of cannabis oil as a retort to Crist and John Morgan’s calls for passage of legislation allowing medical marijuana in Florida. That should get him a few Libertarians willing compromise what little real principles they have. He could attempt to take credit for the rebounding of the stock market again which, arguably, any incumbent government could do if there are enough bumpkins out there who would falls for it. He has made a play recently by going after a prohibition of abortions within 24 weeks and that will certainly attract the religious who are never interested in the civil rights of the individual. His only hope is the fact that the Florida Democratic Party is as intellectually and politically inept as always. They, thankfully, aren’t running Alex Sink but they are trying reconcile themselves to Charlie Crist as Nan Rich was neither inspiring nor really any better an option.

The next Florida governor will be elected based on his ability to get independents who typically vote moderate to the polls. Crist has a better chance at doing it than Scott as he is more like a Barack Obama or a Mitt Romney. The average independent is a right/center voter and is not at all enthusiastic over the Florida Republican Party anymore than its counterpart. And as Progressives have yet to relearn the fine art of venturing beyond the bubble of special interest groups, and actually trying to reach the public, they’ll continue to be a non-factor in Florida politics and the party they believe represents them.







30 Comments

Redbaron616

July 05, 2014, 03:06:50 PM
Enough of tarring everyone not liberal as a bigot. You present no proof, but trot out the KKK hood without any facts to base this on. This is just a smear job. Facts are inconvenient, so innuendo will do, no doubt. If you prefer liberalism, might I suggest Chicago might be more to your liking.

As for schools, why is it that we seem to believe that a public monopoly is in children's best interest? Doesn't the fact that a high school diploma means nothing tell you everything you need to know? Why shouldn't parents be able to send their children to any school they want? Why should the poor be stuck in failing schools? If there is bigotry, that is it. Trap the poor in failing schools and deny them anything better. Throw more money at the schools but refuse to actual demand any meaningful improvements. Why are monopolies bad for business but great for government?

stephendare

July 05, 2014, 03:16:24 PM
Enough of tarring everyone not liberal as a bigot. You present no proof, but trot out the KKK hood without any facts to base this on. This is just a smear job. Facts are inconvenient, so innuendo will do, no doubt. If you prefer liberalism, might I suggest Chicago might be more to your liking.

As for schools, why is it that we seem to believe that a public monopoly is in children's best interest? Doesn't the fact that a high school diploma means nothing tell you everything you need to know? Why shouldn't parents be able to send their children to any school they want? Why should the poor be stuck in failing schools? If there is bigotry, that is it. Trap the poor in failing schools and deny them anything better. Throw more money at the schools but refuse to actual demand any meaningful improvements. Why are monopolies bad for business but great for government?

Redbaron, did you take your meds today?

In case reading is a little too much for you, Robert is a PROGRESSIVE BLOGGER.  Its in the actual graphic.  And unless you are making the claim that both the Klan and bigotry have disappeared from Florida, then its reasonable to talk about Klan political activity.

http://www.unskkkk.com/florida1.htm
http://unskkkk.com/home/

and since you would like to talk facts, please show that there is a public monopoly on Education.  Otherwise you sound a little ridiculous.

NotNow

July 05, 2014, 09:48:15 PM
RB is right.  Montgomery cast all Scott voters as bigots, which is just stupid.  When "bloggers" resort to name calling, you can be sure that the facts do not support their views.  But, most of us already know that, don't we?

stephendare

July 05, 2014, 10:11:46 PM
RB is right.  Montgomery cast all Scott voters as bigots, which is just stupid.  When "bloggers" resort to name calling, you can be sure that the facts do not support their views.  But, most of us already know that, don't we?

You must have some special technology which allows you to read sentences that aren't there and ignore ones that are.

Which most of us also already know.

NotNow

July 05, 2014, 10:27:19 PM
From the "blog":

"Rick Scott represents the “Khaki-Set”: the suburbanite in the gated community whose wife sports a bleached bob and kids who barely notice he’s alive, the repressed cracker who clutches his flag, gun, and KKK hood and is resentful because a government bureaucrat chose a “welfare queen” over him, or her, for food stamps once, the minister who still believes that good health and poverty reduction is just a prayer away, the white collar worker who really thinks his company’s success depends on virtual impunity to law, ethics, and humane treatment of people and the small-time shop keeper who believes that the only thing holding him back from realizing his potential in a capitalistic society is the 25 cents he pays in fuel taxes, and those pesky employees he has to pay a wage. "

I know that you won't be able to "read the sentences".  But I have quoted them for everyone else.  This kind of "blogging" is just mindless.  If you are falling for this crap, you shouldn't be voting anyway.   IMHO   8)

stephendare

July 05, 2014, 11:43:18 PM
so, no.  there is no backup to your absurd claims that Robert said that all scott supporters are bigots?

ok.  exactly as i thought.

Are you claiming that no bigoted people support Scott?

and btw, this has been two solid days of your posting in which you are calling other posters names.  Please consider this a reminder of our rules of civility.

Robert is not mindless, and the other posters are not idiots because they don't agree with your sometimes ephemeral attempts to make arguments.

Badfinger

July 07, 2014, 08:02:28 AM
Of course there are bigots that support Scott, just as there are bigots that support every candidate as we are all bigoted in one way or another.  The question is whether  all Scott supporters are racial bigots as Mr. Mongomery implies but falls short of claiming.  The answer is most likely no. 

As to whether the author is mindless, no, but his writing certainly is shallow and predictable.

stephendare

July 07, 2014, 08:07:18 AM
Of course there are bigots that support Scott, just as there are bigots that support every candidate as we are all bigoted in one way or another.  The question is whether  all Scott supporters are racial bigots as Mr. Mongomery implies but falls short of claiming.  The answer is most likely no. 

As to whether the author is mindless, no, but he certainly is shallow and predictable.

Interesting, since the author did not claim this.  But hey, whatever warms your cockles, I guess.

As for myself, while its not a surprise that Florida elected a criminal who defrauded old people out of at least a billion dollars, I certainly hope that enough regular, decent people show up at the polls this time to elect someone less toxic to the state. 

At this point, a bank robber would be a step up.

Badfinger

July 07, 2014, 08:12:20 AM
Actually I was commenting on your questions as to whether someone else was claiming that  NO bigoted people were in support of Scott. I believe that there are as there are bigots supporting Crist and virtually every other candidate that has ever run. 

stephendare

July 07, 2014, 08:17:22 AM
The difference being that Crist didn't steal a billion dollars in Medicare funds from old people.

In fact, probably very few people in the state have ever done that.

But vote your conscience bad finger.  It will show your unpredictable 'depth' to vote for a proven fraudster.

Badfinger

July 07, 2014, 08:28:52 AM

But vote your conscience bad finger.  It will show your unpredictable 'depth' to vote for a proven fraudster.

Cannot recall where I stated who I am voting for and in fact I'm quite torn right now.

Crist most certainly will win the right to run against Scott but it is impossible to trust that what he says now is what he really believes as opposed to what he said when he ran as a Republican for Senate, Governor, etc.  Rich is a "true believer", sincere and passionate but has no chance as Florida Democrats seem to have decided that winning is more important than ideological consistency and therefore are seemingly willing to give Crist a pass.

theduvalprogressive

July 07, 2014, 05:09:34 PM
Why blame me when it is Scott and the GOP who goes after this demographic?

NotNow

July 07, 2014, 06:10:34 PM
cred·i·bil·i·ty noun \ˌkre-də-ˈbi-lə-tē\
: the quality of being believed or accepted as true, real, or honest

stephendare

July 07, 2014, 06:38:16 PM
I was wondering when you would stumble onto this idea, nn.  Its a great concept to begin practicing

theduvalprogressive

July 07, 2014, 06:43:09 PM
It would be a victory, albeit hollow, if the Democrats won with Crist and then used the opportunity to promote Democrats.

Ocklawaha

July 07, 2014, 08:31:59 PM
cred·i·bil·i·ty noun \ˌkre-də-ˈbi-lə-tē\
: the quality of being believed or accepted as true, real, or honest

You won't find it with this so-called progressive NOTNOW. This is the same guy I welcomed into a streetcar group only to have him go off with his political editorializing. When I cut his posts out, explaining plainly that the site was for and about STREETCARS, he went on a similar tirade accusing me M/L of being a welfare recipient on the federal dole because I'm a 100% disabled veteran.

You'll note that the 'progressives' are progressive as long as it involves saving a few frogs in lieu of a port, or protesting oil pipelines because 'we need to change.' They are the self-appointed experts in all things, after all they are
The Progressive Bloggers.'

As a matter of fact we do need to change, we need to reopen the coal mines, railroads, pipelines, refineries, quarries and smokestack industry that will in fact drive down our dependence on foreign imports. Once we are independent again, then we can find American solutions to American problems with American talent and jobs. It's funny to me how 'progressive' meant highways, commerce, industry, drilling, mining, and commercial ventures of every type. The new wimpy batch of 'progressives' are more about eliminating the military, making reefs out of industrial machinery, protecting gnats, and spending like crazy... as long as it isn't their money. But of course my opinion reeks of being a Christian-KKK-bigotted plot to overthrow our socialist leaning government (damn I do wish it was that easy).

BTW, haven't you all seen those ad's with Scott chewing tobacco, pouring gasoline in a river, shooting at the moon, hound dog by his side? How about the 'Christian' one where he's in front of a burning cross holding a bible, and...

Really? These people come across as nothing more then... You know, in fact, they don't come across at all. Tripe. Okay children, let the name calling and 'corrections' begin.

NotNow

July 07, 2014, 08:34:15 PM
I was wondering when you would stumble onto this idea, nn.  Its a great concept to begin practicing


Now that's funny!   8)

stephendare

July 07, 2014, 08:36:29 PM
I was wondering when you would stumble onto this idea, nn.  Its a great concept to begin practicing


Now that's funny!   8)

I know!  It would mean getting off the right wing email chains and reading something besides conspiracy sites and the like.  its like……as if….lol

stephendare

July 07, 2014, 08:38:19 PM
what a weird post, ock.  Do you actually know what a 'progressive' is?  Because aside from your gun enthusiasm you are pretty much a died in the wool progressive blogger yourself.  ;)

I swear you guys are so far out there sometimes.  I would wonder where you get all these bizarre ideas, except that you only have to turn on Fox or listen to Rush or Glen Beck to find out.

JeffreyS

July 07, 2014, 09:07:10 PM

As a matter of fact we do need to change, we need to reopen the coal mines, railroads, pipelines, refineries, quarries and smokestack industry that will in fact drive down our dependence on foreign imports.
We could just stick with Obama's direction on this. FactCheck.org had the updated numbers for Obama's presidency today and Oil imports are down 48%, US Oil up 67% and Wind/Solar up 231%.  I agree with you energy independence is one of the paramount concerns this nation should have and as much as you hate Obama he is wonderful on this issue.

NotNow

July 07, 2014, 09:13:24 PM

President Obama’s Record on Oil and Gas Production
JANUARY 24, 2012

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 Since President Obama took office, total U.S. oil and natural gas production has increased. This increase, however, has happened in spite of the President, not because of him. The increase in production is occurring on private and state lands, the use of which is much harder for the President to restrict (at least in the short term). Meanwhile, production on federal lands is decreasing significantly. This decrease isn’t a result of President Obama’s policies exclusively, but it is the result of decades and policies that have systematically reduced energy production on federal lands.

The Basic Facts:

The government leases less than 2.2 percent of federal offshore areas and less than 6 percent of federal onshore lands for oil and natural gas production.[ii]
[**Update** The following bullet cites data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA). EIA subsequently discovered that the data they used for determining oil and natural gas production numbers on federal lands were incorrect and they are working to fix the problem. The Department of Interior, which regulates energy production on federal lands, is working with EIA to develop a system that more adequately reflects production clearly, and we will update the oil and natural gas production charts when the federal government completes its coordination and updates its information.]

Oil and natural gas production on federal lands has fallen by over 40 percent since 2000.[iii]
Since 2000, oil production on private and state lands has risen by 11 percent and natural gas production has risen by 40 percent.[iv]
President Obama has leased less than half of the offshore acres than President Clinton leased.


The source for the amount of oil and natural gas produced on federal land is the Energy Information Administration’s (part of the Department of Energy) Annual Energy Review, which analyzes historical energy trends.

The data from the Annual Energy Review is clear: the increase in U.S. oil and natural gas production is because of production on private and state lands in places like North Dakota. Almost all of North Dakota’s Bakken formation is on private lands, and as a result, production has dramatically increased. Over the past 10 years, North Dakota oil production has increased by over 250 percent, while federal oil and natural gas production has fallen over 40 percent.

President Obama cannot honestly claim credit for the increase in oil and natural gas production over the past few years. This misconstrues the facts and it is an inaccurate portrayal of his administration’s record on energy issues. After all, his administration did not hold a single offshore lease sale in fiscal year 2011, while the Bush administration planned to hold five.  Those sales were rejected when the administration decided not to pursue a new 2010–2015 OCS lease plan reflecting the expiration of the presidential and congressional moratoriums on leasing in 2008.  Also, President Obama’s Bureau of Land Management is setting records for the least amount of leases on average per year. President Clinton sold over twice the number of leases per year than President Obama.

 

 

 

 

See Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement, Offshore Energy and Minerals Management, http://www.boemre.gov/offshore/.  According to the administration’s website, the outer continental shelf is 1.76 billion acres (http://www.boemre.gov/ld/PDFs/GreenBook-LeasingDocument.pdf page 1) and only 38 million acres are leased (Department of Interior, Oil and Gas Lease Utilization – Onshore and Offshore, http://www.doi.gov/news/pressreleases/loader.cfm?csModule=security/getfile&pageid=239255 page 4). That is a mere 2.16% of the entire Outer Continental Shelf.

[ii] According to the Department of Interior, 38 million acres of onshore lands are leased for oil and natural gas production. See Table 3 in Department of Interior, Oil and Gas Lease Utilization—Onshore and Offshore, http://www.doi.gov/news/pressreleases/loader.cfm?csModule=security/getfile&pageid=239255. According to the Congressional Research Service, the federal government owns just over 650 million acres of land. See Appendix A. Congressional Research Service, Major Federal Land Management Agencies: Management of Our Nation’s Lands and Resources, May 15, 1995, http://www.ncseonline.org/nle/crsreports/natural/nrgen-3.cfm. The federal government also controls an additional 58 million acres of federal mineral estate below privately owned surface estate. See Bureau of Land Management, Split Estate, http://www.blm.gov/pgdata/etc/medialib/blm/wo/MINERALS__REALTY__AND_RESOURCE_PROTECTION_/bmps.Par.98100.File.dat/SplitEstate08finalWeb.pdf.

[iii] See Energy Information Administration, Annual Energy Review 2010, Table 1.14  Fossil Fuel Production on Federally Administered Lands, 1949-2010, Oct. 19, 2011, http://205.254.135.24/totalenergy/data/annual/pdf/sec1_31.pdf.

[iv] Id.

http://instituteforenergyresearch.org/analysis/president-obamas-record-on-oil-and-gas-production/

JeffreyS

July 07, 2014, 10:07:01 PM
So you quote that private land Oil production is up 11% and fact checks total number is 67% reconcile that for me.  That article cherry picks one year 2011 instead of looking at the whole Administration's term.

stephendare

July 07, 2014, 11:19:57 PM
Thats because the quote is from a blog sponsored by ALEC, one of the most pernicious, dishonest group of lobbyists in the country.

Its not really a citation so much as it is a propaganda piece.  Its the right wing equivalent of asking Kanye West to describe the racial opinions of the Bush family.

http://instituteforenergyresearch.org/about/people/daniel-simmons/
Quote
Daniel Simmons is IER’s Director of Regulatory and State Affairs. He oversees our energy research and outreach at the state level.

Prior to working for ALEC, Simmons was a Research Fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. He analyzed proposed federal regulations and wrote comments to federal agencies during the rulemaking process. He also drafted law review articles based on a current regulatory and legal issues.

NotNow

July 07, 2014, 11:57:03 PM
Sooo, you will provide the statistics that show differently, right?  You know, the ones that show how much Obama has supported the domestic oil and gas industry...

or you could just attack the breadth of the study or the people involved....

stephendare

July 08, 2014, 01:03:10 AM
Sooo, you will provide the statistics that show differently, right?  You know, the ones that show how much Obama has supported the domestic oil and gas industry...

or you could just attack the breadth of the study or the people involved....

its not a study. it comes from a propaganda lobbyist group.

But hey, I expect nothing less .

theduvalprogressive

July 08, 2014, 10:59:01 AM
The Obama Administration has been accepting of the shale oil industry around the XL Pipeline area. In his first term he didn't come out vocally in support, but did show approval, on some level, by simply allowing it to happen.

NotNow

July 08, 2014, 05:53:24 PM
The Obama Administration has been accepting of the shale oil industry around the XL Pipeline area. In his first term he didn't come out vocally in support, but did show approval, on some level, by simply allowing it to happen.

It is almost completely private operators on private land.  Obama has no choice except to "let it happen".  The only public approvals needed was for the actual XL pipeline.  That "Presidential decision" still hasn't happened. 

Ocklawaha

July 08, 2014, 09:35:50 PM

As a matter of fact we do need to change, we need to reopen the coal mines, railroads, pipelines, refineries, quarries and smokestack industry that will in fact drive down our dependence on foreign imports.
We could just stick with Obama's direction on this. FactCheck.org had the updated numbers for Obama's presidency today and Oil imports are down 48%, US Oil up 67% and Wind/Solar up 231%.  I agree with you energy independence is one of the paramount concerns this nation should have and as much as you hate Obama he is wonderful on this issue.

Who the hell is Glen Beck? Never seen or heard him but I have now been thrice accused of consulting him? And yes I am serious.

Yes I HATE OBAMA! (I just wrote that because somebody was bound to call anything I post 'hate speech'). I voted for the DEAR LEADER myself the first round then discovered he was the least accessible, least transparent, least pro defense, least pro American, least pro 'shovel ready' alternate fuels guy we've ever elected. BTW he has done NOTHING for Amtrak either, and screwed the pooch on HSR with overreaching plans that the republicans were wise to kill. I do follow the traffic and projections, and overall since his election the performance has been abysmal. Wonderful? Where?


Association of American Railroads.

finehoe

July 09, 2014, 12:03:17 PM

Association of American Railroads.

And in up-to-date information:

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) today reported increased U.S. rail traffic for June 2014, with both carload and intermodal volume increasing compared with June 2013. U.S. Class I railroads originated 1,177,655 carloads in June 2014, up 3.6 percent (41,310 carloads) over June 2013.  Year-over-year monthly carload growth averaged 4.9 percent from March 2014 through June 2014, the highest average for any four-month period since December 2010 through March 2011. Total carloads averaged 294,414 in June, the highest weekly average for June since 2008.

theduvalprogressive

July 15, 2014, 05:11:20 PM
NOTNOW... Come on. Surely the President has some say in a situation after six years
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