Musings, opinions, observations, questions, and random thoughts on island life, Fernandina Beach and more

Musings, opinions, observations, questions, and random thoughts on island life, Fernandina Beach and more

Is Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis Trump Without The Harumph?

Those of us that live in Florida are fortunate, extremely fortunate.

In addition to the great weather and beaches the sunshine state is one of the most prosperous in the nation. It boasts the country’s third-largest economy and continues to thrive as more and more businesses and people pour in to escape the economic wrecks and crime-infested hellholes of Chicago, New York, St. Louis, Baltimore, Los Angeles, etc.

Florida and Texas have gone from having essentially the same combined population as California in 1990 (29.9 million vs. 29.8 million) to opening up a commanding lead of 50.7 million to 39.5 million. California lost a Congressional seat along with a population drop. Florida gained one and Texas two.

Florida’s fatality rate for the Chinese covid virus is one of the lowest in the country despite being the nation’s third most populous state and one with a disproportionately large number of retirees.

Florida’s schools are ranked gold and silver medal winners in USA Today’s standings and the National Center for Education Statistics shows significantly narrower achievement gaps between white, black, and Hispanic students than in other states.

Businesses and their employees find the fact that Florida has no personal income tax, low business taxes, and no sales tax on machinery and equipment highly appealing. The financial industry is also eyeballing the state ‘s retirement community, a group that includes massive numbers of rich people that aren’t decrepit and don’t want to continue to be pillaged by the far- left Democrat plunderers running New York, New Jersey, Illinois, Michigan, etc.

The state’s blessed  to have a governor who is getting lots of national attention – Ron DeSantis – who has Florida rocking financially despite Covid and futile attempts by raging Democrats to thwart him with their socialistic programs.

The wildly popular Florida governor, who is running for reelection in 2022, is molding Florida into a thriving and peaceful utopia for residents and newcomers alike. His aggressive yet measured approach in taking on national issues and kayoing them on a state level has captured nationwide attention and has propelled him into the top spot as the GOP’s top contender for the party’s 2024 presidential nomination. A straw poll conducted at a Western Conservative Summit in Denver recently had more participants (74%) saying they supported DeSantis for a 2024 run for President than said they supported Trump (71%.). Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas was third with 43%.

Another cover story by the Washington Examiner last week outlined the popular Florida governor’s growing national appeal and his rising potential.

The 42-year-old DeSantis has tackled every topical hot button issue from law and order and Critical Race Theory to high tech censorship and prayer in schools among others with relative ease, all while watching his flustered opponents wail away helplessly under a hail of pro-DeSantis opinion polls and positive media attention.

He’s Trump without the Harumph.

His appeal is crossing party and race lines, particularly among those fed up with the insanity of defunding the police, teaching school children critical race theory, the Black Lives Matter idiocy, major media lies and propaganda, rioting and looting without consequences, social media censorship, woke corporations, and other destructive anti-American Democrat nonsense.

Willie Geist, a panelist on CNN’s left-wing “Morning Joe” show even acknowledged DeSantis’s appeal recently saying: “He fights all the same fights on issues and on cultural questions that President Trump fought and continues to fight. But he does it without the exhaustion. He doesn’t come with all the drama.”

Here are a few examples of Governor DeSantis’s positive measures so far, in no particular order:

  • He signed a ban on sanctuary cities in Florida.
  • Through his appointments he transformed Supreme Court of Florida from being one of the most liberal courts in the nation to being one of the most conservative.
  • He signed a bill earlier this week that expands civics education in state public schools to include a presentation about the “evils of communism and totalitarian ideologies” that directly conflict with the founding principles of America. Under the legislation, this becomes a requirement of high school government class.  At the same time, he signed a pro-free speech bill that requires state colleges and universities to evaluate, on a yearly basis, viewpoint diversity and intellectual freedom on campus.
  • DeSantis signed a bill Tuesday, June 15, requiring Florida’s public schools to offer a moment of silence for students. It goes into effect July 1 and requires schools to hold a daily moment of silence of one to two minutes.
  • The Florida Board of Education (BOE) on June 10, approved a rule initiated by DeSantis that specifies public schools teach American history based on “universal principles stated in the Declaration of Independence” and bans critical race theory from being taught in Florida classrooms. “Our schools cannot be infected with ideologies like critical race theory,” says DeSantis.
  • During his first year as governor he signed into law, the largest expansion of school choice anywhere in the country.
  • On June 2, DeSantis signed a bill banning transgendered athletes from competing in girls’ sports, a policy he says is “just common sense.”
  • During the Covid Chinese pandemic He opened Florida up faster than any other populous state saying: “Florida chose freedom over Fauci-ism, and we are better off for it.” Despite having one of the country’s largest elderly populations Florida’s did the opposite of New York’s bumbling Governor Andrew Cuomo and his decision was a lifesaver for those in nursing homes.
  • During the riots in major American cities last summer, he called up the national guard worked with local law enforcement and initiated and signed the strongest anti-rioting, pro-law enforcement legislation in the country, saying: “We are not going to let any local government defund the police. In Florida, if you engage in mob violence, you’re going to jail, and you’re going to stay in jail.”
  • DeSantis has also attacked the Biden administration’s disastrous immigration policies that have resulted in human trafficking, crime, and drugs pouring into the country, including Florida. He’s joined with the governors of Texas, Arizona, and others to help secure the border. “We need to act because I can tell you, these cartels are eating Joe Biden’s lunch,” he says, “so we’ll do what we can to be helpful.”
  • He put woke corporations on notice in Florida telling then that “We are not going let our state be run by woke corporations. He says he will fight back against their corporate claptrap. “If you’re a woke CEO, you want to get involved in our legislative business, or you want to get in there and slam us or smear me or my legislature or Floridians, it’s a free country, but understand, if you do that, I’m fighting back against you and I’m gonna’ make sure that people understand your business practices and then we’re going to talk about what you’re doing. if you go down that road, you’re guaranteeing conflict.”
  • Adding to his dim view of corporate malfeasance he explained that he intends to advance public policy that elevates the freedom of the individual over the freedom of the corporation. “Do we want to support that freedom, or do we want to support the freedom of massive monopolies to censor views they don’t like?’ he asked.
  • He went after a biased national media saying that a very partisan, corrupt, corporate, media – many of them based in New York City – do not tell the truth routinely to the American people. “Instead, they manufacturer partisan narratives regardless of the facts,” he exclaimed. “And their duty seems to really be trying to gaslight people into believing their narratives rather than to inform them of things that are actually going on.”

DeSantis hits Biden’s administration on the economy, and his accountability for their role in covering up the origins of the Chinese virus pandemic as well as the economy.

“He’s leaving a lot of people behind,” he says of Biden. “Look at all the workers he left behind by canceling the Keystone XL pipeline. Those were thousands and thousands of very good jobs. And then also think about family budgets, with the sharp increase in gas prices, and then the overall budding inflation that we are seeing that’s being fueled by his big-spending policies.”

So far Governor DeSantis’s only two opponents in the 2022 gubernatorial race are Nikki Fried, the state’s only state-wide elected Democrat and commissioner of agriculture, and a confused Democrat Congressman Charlie Crist, a former governor, former Republican, former Independent and current Democrat, who apparently desperately needs a job. Ms. Fried is even a bigger joke, who complained on national TV recently that DeSantis was getting too much national TV attention.

***

Meanwhile Back At The Ranch: Fernandina Beach City Commissioner Chip Ross’s personal suit against the Ocean Highway and Port Authority (OHPA) requesting its financial records has resulted so far in a “Writ of Mandamus” by the court. Don’t get too excited if you’re a Ross fan as this is nothing more than a “show cause” order, not an order to produce.

In other words, the Port has 30 days to explain why they have not honored the grumpy commissioner’s request for documents. I’m advised that Port lawyers will argue that the documents are confidential, and exposure will impact business. The Judge will then decide what to do.

My learned source hereabouts tells me it’s likely the Port will prevail unless Ross can show compelling reason why his interest trumps business interests. He thinks the lawsuit indicates a reckless and disrespectful behavior by a sitting commissioner….which will not be ignored by the court because it indicates lack of confidence in his own commission to faithfully pursue just recourse. In a nutshell “it is rogue,” he says. “His actions as a ‘private citizen’ are clearly in conflict with his duty as a city commissioner……this conflict of interest will play in favor of the Port.”

If Ross put that same amount of energy into finding waste in city government spending he’d find a vast multiple of the $50,000 he says the Port owes the city annually. But he won’t.

***

Speaking Of Ross: A citizen recently speculated that Ross’s wife, Faith, will run to replace her husband when he terms out.

***

Did Someone Say “Marina”? Just recently the Fernandina Beach City Commissioners approved executing a refinance note with Sterling National Bank for marina debt….$10.587 million at 2.45% over 20 years….with payment from non-Ad-Valorem revenues.

Basically, the Note allows the city to pay-as-it-can over the next 20 years, using budgeted and allocated non-Ad-Valorem revenues from….marina net income(to city), sales tax, fees, etc. as needed….as well as the right to pre-pay using any proceeds received from FEMA explained my expert.

My informed source says how this eventually works out is unknown. Since property taxes cannot be used, the money must come from somewhere. For example, the first principle payment is $444,000 due 9/1/2022 plus an interest payment. Will the marina be able to cover the whole nut, he asks?

He went on to say that the refinancing simply spreads the debt out over 20 years. Taxpayer subsidy to the tune of $500,000 or more will continue to be needed to cover expenses no longer paid because of the semi-annual note payments.

Like any refinancing it reduces the payment and stretches it out over a longer time.

Can the marina last until 2040 without major repair? Will the marina even exist in 2040? The debt sure will, he says.

***

Things I Wish I’d Said: “What the big media does is so much more influential and interfering in our election, in our electoral process, than anything that Russia or China could ever hope to accomplish, and they don’t admit it. They’ll never admit it.” – Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI).

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Things I Wish You’d Say: I rarely respond to a reader’s comments here. I’ll delete vile and profane items,  but otherwise those commenting are free to express themselves, contradict my opinions and heap criticism on me at will. I enjoy reading well researched and thought out commentary whether the writer agrees with me or not. However, I do object to folks who frequently do not express original opinions, and instead attempt to post links to other sites, lazily writing: “read this”. Concisely summarize your research, reference your sources, and add your own explanatory thoughts and opinions. Also, I have no idea whether these links you attach contain a virus, malware, etc.  I appreciate folks that can think for themselves no matter their political persuasion. I’m sure other readers do too.

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Wait! What? Recently Joe Biden said that he didn’t believe that America was a racist country. Within minutes, in the same speech, he said that America was a systemic racist nation. Systemic means all inclusive. Everyone is a racist. Later in the same rambling, babbling speech, he said that white supremacy was the greatest threat to our nation. Really, how? Biden stated that ALL the generals told Obama and him that global warming was the greatest threat to America. But didn’t Biden say white supremacy was the greatest threat? Now think about this a second. Are we training soldiers to protect our nation from its enemies or to combat rain, sleet, snow, or oppressive heat? Do you feel more comfortable now with Biden in the White House?

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Vote for Beer & Other Interesting News: Dave Beer, the winning candidate for the District 4 Commission seat in Scott County, Minnesota,  didn’t have to search far for a snappy campaign slogan (see photo).  An interesting news item from Africa reports that after stopping for drinks at an illegal bar, a Zimbabwean bus driver found that the 20 mental patients he was supposed to be transporting from Harare to Bulawayo had escaped. Not wanting to admit his incompetence, the driver went to a nearby bus stop and offered everyone waiting there a free ride. He then delivered the passengers to the mental hospital, telling the staff that the patients were very excitable and prone to bizarre fantasies. The deception wasn’t discovered for three days.

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Drinking, Dining & Dancing: This coming Thursday, July 1, the Sandbar & Kitchen at Main Beach will host the Foar From Home crew that is planning to row across the Atlantic later this year in a effort to bring attention to and prevent veteran suicide. Sandbar owner Kevin Dooner says the $100 per person donation special event called “Busting the Barrel” will entitle attendees to a bottle of specially labeled “Foar From Home” whiskey from the Heaven’s Door Distillery in Tennessee signed by the crew as well as a shot of the hooch. The upstairs 5-8 pm event will also enable attendees to see the specially designed boat “Courageous” and meet the four local rowers that will crew the boat. Sandbar boasts some 1,000 different brands of whiskey and lays claim to having the widest variety of whiskey in Florida. The local Amelia Island crewmembers served in four different branches of the U.S. military and will depart on their charitable mission December 21.  Tonight, June 25, beginning at 4 pm piano man, John Springer, and his sidekick drummer, Rob Taylor, will be performing at the new Marriott hotels on Atlantic, Springhill Suites and the Courtyard at the site’s Tide Pool Bar and Grill outdoor venue, 4-7 pm.  They’re also booked at the American Legion Post 54 at Gum and South 3rd Street, Saturday, July 3, from 6 -9 p.m. Both events are open to the public. The Sean McCarthy Band is hosting a “Booze Cruise,” a $65 per person ticketed event aboard an Amelia River Cruise boat Saturday, July 3, 4-6 pm that includes beer and wine. Call 904/261-9972 for tickets.

  • Comment (14)
  • I so very much enjoy reading Dave Scott’s blog. While I do not have a direct interest to protect in Fernandina. I do have empathy with people who have to deal with the tax and spend philosophy of the Commission. If I ever had the desire to move to Fernandina for my final years in this world, the Commissioners diminish my hope to zero.

  • “Governor Biden”? Seems like Dave had what might be described as a “Biden moment”.

  • Last paragraph, first sentence in the DeSantis article needs a quick correction. Otherwise, great article.

  • Could not agree more with your assessment of Gov. DeSantis and what he has accomplished. The only issue I have with him elevating to national office would be the loss (selfishly) to Florida.

    • Duke, I understand that it is “first come, first served”. You can contribute at the event. Call the Sandbar 904/310-3648 for additional information about the event.

  • A Ron DeSantis/VP Kristie Noem ticket would be most appealing. This offers the party a southerner (Florida) and mid-western VP candidate/governor from South Dakota. Both are strong on their states economic stability and surely would do the same for our country. My thoughts.

  • I’m not sure Faith Ross will run for city office. She may lack Chips natural charm and charisma. Of course she does believe she speaks plain truth. But then again so does “What me Worry Uncle Joe Biden”.

  • I hope more patriotic Americanos begin to understand, as you do, Dave, that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis presents voters with all the benefits of Donald Trump without the considerable downside. He’s smarter than the Donald, far more articulate, understands the conservative American project on the basis of a consistent and well thought-out political and cultural point of view based on a large store of knowledge. He can relate how a conservative agenda benefits Americans and can do this without the off-putting vulgarities, the outlandish claims, and the lame and sometimes cringe-inducing attempts at stand-up comedy. Trump did a lot of good things in office. But he failed to convince voters of this. And he did enough things in office and after 11/3 to ensure he could never again win 270 or more electoral votes. Donald Trump — the most maddening mix of political good and bad in our history — is the past. The Republican Party has some fine candidates on which the party and the nation can build a future. Candidates who could retire Joe Biden or Kamala Harris in 2024. Ron DeSantis stands at the head of this group.

  • Until the GOP can seek new voters rather than disenfranchise them, they will remain wandering in the wilderness. Ron has done all the things that will repel new voters, not attract them.
    The GOP will remain a minority party until it wakes up.

  • Today the Chinese Communist Party marks it’s 100 year anniversary.
    The Soviet Communist Party never achieved this milestone.
    Clearly, western democracies now face a much more powerful adversary.
    Perhaps we will soon stop playing with ourselves and take the challenge seriously.

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