Florida Governor Rick Scott Is Lying…Again

Photo Courtesy of www.thinkprogress.net/Florida Governor Rick Scott

Photo Courtesy of http://www.thinkprogress.net/Florida Governor Rick Scott

Florida Governor Rick Scott is trying his best to remain in Tallahassee as the state’s governor, even if he has to lie to do it.

Just last week, Scott said that his economic policies and pro business approach have saved Florida’s economy.

Scott also called me to say that he enjoys listening to old Ja Rule albums and he has a collection of old Paul Krugman editorials.

Now outside of my truth stretching, I’m not the one asking Floridians to back me for another term as face of the state.

I guess the good thing about Scott’s attempt to take credit for President Obama’s economic policy is that it’s helping him politically.

The caveat to that is that he’s just, ya know, lying about it.

Taking that further, Scott recently said that Florida would have never experienced a downturn if he was in office back in 2007. In fact, he said that it was because of former Governor Charlie Crist and state CFO Alex Sink that the state lost almost one million jobs back then.

So not only does Scott have a special way of fudging numbers, and committing fraud, he tries to roll potential opponents with more lies.

But Scott’s silver tongue is catching the ears of some state economists who are calling his bluff. Plainly put, they all say that he’s a liar.

A tall, skinny, bald headed, brash liar.

The sad part in all of this is that Scott’s word may win him another election. Because Florida’s economy is on the rebound and jobs are returning to the state, Scott gets to take the credit for something he potentially made worse.

Scott’s right; he is pro business, and that has worked against the working class in Florida.

So while Scott makes his way around the state to tell you that “it’s working,” tell him that he’s exactly right. His policies have worked to ruin the state, his policies are working to kill the economic climate in Florida, and his policies have worked to make Florida one of the worst political climates in the nation.

Just remember this: It’s working.

-JH

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Change Of Heart: Orlando Mayor, Commission Opt For Modest Raise

Photo courtesy of www.cityoforlando.net/Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer

Photo courtesy of http://www.cityoforlando.net/Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer

What a difference a week makes? After the gnashing of teeth, and some pretty upset union members, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer announced at the city’s budget hearing that the 21 percent pay increase he sought for himself and the commission may send the wrong message to the public.

Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?

At any rate, the mayor, and the commissioners who voted for the increase, finally realized that a double-digit bump in pay will not sit well with Orlando residents.

After citing a study the city did about the pay of other elected officials from varied cities comparable to Orlando, Dyer implied that he knows that he is under paid as well as the city commission. He also understands why such a vast increase seems out-of-touch.

But for those upset, or maybe not, that the city’s group of elected officials will not go home with an extra 10 grand or so in their pockets, don’t fret, because they will still receive a six percent raise in pay.

After the ruckus created by the commission and the mayor over the pay raises, it just about serves them right that there would be a little blowback for this decision.

In the end, being a commissioner, and mayor for that matter, is a hard job. Its thankless, some are well underpaid, it has never been a part-time position, and narcissism is in the job description. So a raise isn’t out of the ordinary or out of line, it’s just the amount that caught people off guard.

Not to mention the number of Orlando residents who barely survive making just under $25,000 per year.

Mild kudos, and I do mean mild, for the mayor and the commission’s decision to walk back the raise. This six percent pay lift may have been in the plans the entire time, but we may never know.

Note: With the slight bump in pay that was approved today, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer’s pay will increase from $160,892 a year to $170,545. For the commission, the increase is modest. Their pay will rise from $49,383 to $52,346.

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Does Obama Have a Bain Problem? Eh, Maybe a Little

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Photo courtesy of USA Today/Jeff Zients

Even after President Barack Obama nailed Mitt Romney’s political coffin, he still can’t get away from the word Bain.

Last year, Obama and his team of political cohorts torched Romney for his association with Bain Capital. Because the country was still in the midst of an economic downturn, the Obama political machine figured that Romney’s love of private equity and hostile takeovers would lead to his undoing.

Plus, if anyone uses the word hostile and Republican in the same sentence, it was bound to catch on soon.

With Bain in his right pocket, and being the incumbent in his left, Obama beat the remaining color out of Romney’s hair. It went so bad for the former governor that Romney was seen pumping his own gas just days after his shellacking.

At any rate, many believed that Romney’s history at Bain was his downfall, and his inability to morph into a good candidate.

So color me, and many others, surprised when Obama named Jeff Zients as temporary head of the National Economic Council. If that name doesn’t ring a loud bell, and it will not for many, Zients is a former executive at Bain and Company, a management consulting firm.

He’s also been with Obama for a little while, and his original appointment as acting director of the Office of Management and Budget was just as shocking to some.

If that’s confusing, don’t worry, it’s confusing to the media as well.

Many blogs and sites are reporting that Zients worked at Bain Capital, which is factually wrong, but not entirely inaccurate.

Bain Capital will often hire Bain and Company to do the ground work on many companies they plan to buy and terminate, errr, I mean rebuild.

In addition, Bain Company and Bain Capital are housed in the same building, and previously, if not currently, hold veto power over Bain Capital’s investments.

What’s interesting, or maybe sad, about this is that the Obama machine claimed that Romney had a Bain mindset. If that’s the case, so does Zients.

It also speaks to Obama’s penchant for keeping men from corporate America beside him.

Zients will aid in shaping economic policy for the president, so take the news of his temp job, and history with Bain, lightly or strongly. Either way, a Bain man has his hands in America’s economic dough.

-JH

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House Republicans Vote To Slash Billions From Food Stamp Program

Photo courtesy of Politico.com

Congressman Daniel Webster/Photo courtesy of Politico.com

Maybe it’s time that someone SNAP on the House Republicans who voted to cut almost $40 billion from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

That joke was flat and off key, but I’m just emulating Republican leadership.

As reported by the USDA, 14.5 percent of Americans are considered to lack food security. That means that many families do not have the financial means to purchase “enough food for active, healthy living.”

In an attempt to fill that hole, some families depend on SNAP, the program formerly known to many as food stamps.

Since the financial crisis of 2007, some Americans have been forced to apply for SNAP benefits. Without it, America’s food insecurity rate would likely triple. In 2011 alone, 18 million households were considered to be food insecure.

Taking that statistic further, four of the seven states with the highest food insecurity rates in America are in the south. That’s Mississippi, Arkansas, Alabama, and Georgia. Add North Carolina and Texas for good measure, and that just about makes up the entire list.

Oh, did I also mention that almost 85 percent of SNAP households have incomes at or below the poverty level?

Getting down to it, I could rattle off more statistics about why this vote was wrong, and how I believe Republicans are bad for America, but I won’t. The good thing about this vote is that it was just symbolic.

As Senator Debbie Stabenow said after the vote in the House, that version of the bill “will never see the light of day in the Senate.” There is still a chance that there may be cuts to this program, but a Jason from Friday the 13th type of slash probably won’t happen.

If this irks the nerves, which I hope it does, scream and yell at the Republican Congress person in one of the 50 states for voting for this bill. If they did, I suspect that they are bereft of empathy, comprehension, insight, and etc…

Maybe House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, one of the worst in the House, said it best when talking about the vote. According to NPR, Cantor stated that the system is being abused, and that it’s wrong to make hard working Americans pay for that exploitation.

Never mind the fact that Cantor failed to point to any specific abuse, or that his party could not produce pointed statistics about misuse of the food assistance program.

This just smells like an attempt to further marginalize the poor and working class.

I’ve never been a fan of Republicans, and that won’t change. Today’s vote on cutting government funded food assistance for the least of us just proves how much the party of Reagan really loves this country.

P.S. but not really: 15 Republicans voted against this nonsensical bill, and none take residence in Florida.

-JH

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Orlando City Commission Votes In Favor Of Considerable Pay Raise

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Photo courtesy of http://www.wftv.com

This past Monday, the Orlando City Commission voted in favor of a significant pay raise where their salaries will rise to $60K per year. The commission also voted to bump Mayor Buddy Dyer’s salary a whopping 37 percent from $142k to $195k per year.

That’s not a shabby haul for a set of politicians who preside over a city that has the lowest paying jobs in the nation.

That’s right; Orlando is the lowest paying metro area in the entire country. Our median income is just over $29,000 per year and almost half of the jobs in Central Florida pay less than $25,000 per year.

On the heels of that news, it seems like such a great time for the mayor and the city commission to receive a pay raise, right?

I guess the slither of a silver lining in this is that two commissioners didn’t go along with the rest. Commissioners Tony Ortiz and Robert Stuart voted no without comment.

There was one commissioner in particular who thought it was a good idea.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, District 5 Commissioner Daisy Lynum, one of the worst on the commission, said that Orlando’s growth is a pretty good reason for the raise. She also mentioned that she wants to stay in line with the other commissioners.

“It was my understanding that the other commissioners were in favor of it, and I didn’t want to stand in the way.”

Reading that comment made me wonder what else she may go along with because she wouldn’t want to stand in the way of her co-workers. Maybe the proposed Orlando soccer stadium deal? What about Creative Village? Eminent domain perhaps?

Sometimes when I read or listen to blithering commentary about why a certain politician wants to do something, it reminds me that we receive the government that we deserve.

But Orlando deserves so much better than someone who votes in step with fellow commissioners instead of in favor of his or her constituents.

Just too bad we don’t realize it.

-JH

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Once Again, Rick Scott Shows His Petty Side

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Back in 2009 when Rick Scott was still a private citizen, he pledged to fight the Affordable Car Act with the might of his hefty pockets, and private donations. Now that he’s governor of Florida, he’s using the weight of his office to pan Obamacare.

To aid in the implantation of the Affordable Care Act, Navigators, or outreach workers, are being barred from county health departments. These navigators are there to help people without health insurance sign up for subsidized coverage.

But because the workers have been told to keep away, some of those individuals who lack health insurance may have a tougher time understanding their options.

Even though what deputy Department of Health Secretary C. Meade Grigg did was wrong, that’s not the entire story. Sure, it is petty for the governor and his political buddies to use fraud as a theme to block the efforts of these works to help those who may need it most.

Yet he acts as if he lives on a different planet that the rest of us. Maybe he does and we don’t know.

Florida voters, what else do you need to see from this guy for him to prove that he couldn’t care less about the well being of Florida?

For some, it may be tough for you to set aside your political ideology. The options staring at you from the other side are either a Republican turncoat in Charlie Crist or an old school liberal in Nan Rich. But seeing just how far Florida has fallen; watching this state make national news for political malfeasance and other boneheaded moves isn’t enough?

Now that the Scott, and Attorney General Pam Bondi, have voiced concern about potential fraud for those signing people up for subsidized insurance, is this the straw? We’re talking about maybe the least of us who will finally have access to something that should be a right, but it’s not.

Are you that hateful of one man that you’re willing to get behind the political equivalent of Dr. Claw from Inspector Gadget?

Please, check the scoreboard and read the facts. Allow the navigators to serve as a compass to guide you beyond political xenophobia.

Rick Scott doesn’t care about Florida.

-JH

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Florida AG Pam Bondi Delays Man’s Execution For Political Cash

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Florida AG Pam Bondi/Photo courtesy of wtsp.com

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi may have finally beat Florida Governor Rick Scott at something: Insolence.

This past Tuesday, Florida was scheduled to execute Marshall Gore, a man convicted of raping and stabbing Robyn Novick to death in 1988.

But Bondi had other plans, and refused to allow an execution to get in the way of a campaign check.

Bondi held a “hometown campaign kickoff,” or campaign fundraiser, at her home in Tampa on the night of Gore’s scheduled execution. But since she can’t be in two places at one time, she decided to reschedule a Gore’s death instead of dinner with the mayor of Tampa.

Since news broke that Bondi asked for Gore’s execution to be rescheduled a third time, twice for legal reasons prior to Bondi’s request, she has since apologized.

“The planned execution of Marshall Lee Gore had already been stayed twice by the courts, and we absolutely should not have requested that the date of the execution be moved.”

For what’s its worth, she at least realized her mistake after the money was raised and the reported 100-200 people had gone home for the night.

Judging by Bondi’s hollow words, I’m sure she had plenty of time to think about her wrong after the news, and social media, continued to deride her for it.

After this, I’m not sure what it will take for Floridians to realize that Scott and Bondi are bad for their health, word to Ice Cube, but this should at least get a little of your attention.

Bondi’s impertinence to even ask for the temporary stay of execution should show this state just how much she values your tax dollars and time. This isn’t the first time Bondi has made the news for bad political behavior.

A couple of years ago, Bondi’s office was in the news for improper firings after two state foreclosure attorneys were fired. Many on the left suspected that the dismissals were politically motivated, but Bondi shot back, citing pitiable performance.

Mr. Gore was due to face his punishment for the heinous crimes he committed. I do not believe in the death penalty, but the state does. So for Bondi, and Rick Scott, to play along with this should be grounds for their jobs to be terminated by voters of this state.

What else do these two have to show to prove that their form of politics is layered in ideological malfeasance?

-JH

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