October 26, 2010

Bullies Should Be Punished.

In a cowardly act of unprovoked violence, a volunteer for the Rand Paul campaign participated in an act of thuggery that would have made Hitler's Brown Shirts proud.

While other Rand Paul supporters held down Lauren Valle, a 23 year old activist who'd been demonstrating along side Paul's appearances, Paul Campaign Coordinator Tim Profitt stomped on her head.

From the AP report:
"I'm sorry that it came to that, and I apologize if it appeared overly forceful, but I was concerned about Rand's safety," Tim Profitt told The Associated Press.

A judge will decide whether Profitt should face criminal charges.
Since Valle had protested along side Paul's campaign before without threat to his person, we hope that the judge throws the book at Profitt.  Not only was it an unwarranted attack, it's a subversion of our political process, which is designed to support - if not actually encourage - voters' rights to express dissenting opinions.

Here you can watch as a crazed mob forces her to the ground, and see Profitt stomp on her:

As you can see, it was no accident.  Profitt puts his foot down on her not once, but twice, and shoves her head into the concrete sidewalk.

Rand Paul and his campaign were quick to dis-associate themselves from this scumbag, and with good reason: this an occasion where comparisons to Nazi tactics is all too appropriate. The only thing missing were actual jackboots: the thuggery was all too evident. 
Paul campaign manager Jesse Benton said Profitt's actions were unacceptable and would not be tolerated.

"The Paul campaign has disassociated itself with the individual who took part in this incident, and once again urges all activists — on both sides — to remember that their political passions should never manifest themselves in physical altercations of any kind."  -AP report
While we approve of Paul's follow-up, we must examine the fact that this is the kind of supporter he attracts: we can be willing to accept Paul's assertion that he does not approve of this kind of action on his behalf, but the fact remains that these were his supporters, and their behavior was abominable.

Tim Profitt didn't just beat up one demonstrator; he attacked the fabric of our democracy, and he should bear the full brunt of the consequences of his wanton act of violence.

October 25, 2010

Sink, or Scott?

Who should be the next governor of Florida, Alex Sink, or Rick Scott?  It's a no-brainer; Alex Sink is the only viable candidate running.

Let's look at the recent debate:

Sink points out that when Scott was the head honcho of the company he founded, the company he was running committed Medicare Fraud, and the company wound up paying $1.7 billion in fines for ripping off taxpayers

Scott rebutted that the company Sink worked for was fined $6.7 million dollars for misleading investors.

Let's compare those two fines for a moment:

SCOTT - $1,700,000,000
SINK   -           $6,750,000

Notice anything?   If the size of the fine is commensurate with the size of the crime, it's obvious whose crime is bigger.

But consider:
Scott was the founder of Columbia/HCA.  He ran the company. He was the top dog.  He set policies.  Those policies included committing Medicare fraud.

Sink worked for Nations Bank. She was an employee - a highly situated employee, but someone hired on nonetheless.  Policy was set by the home office, and didn't go through Sink.

Neither was charged with a crime.  But in a civil suit, Scott claims that although he signed all the reports and letters that indicated he knew about his company's crimes, he never actually read what he was signing.  His defense was he didn't know what his company, the one he founded, and the one he was running, was doing.

From The Miami Herald:
"I don't know what the document said..."
From the Palm Beach Post:
"It was a legal dispute that was settled," Scott said of the lawsuit against the Solantic health clinic chain. "It has nothing to do with running for governor..."
Actually, it has everything to do with running for governor; the governor is responsible for signing bills into laws, and to sign budgets to make them official.  And Scott is on the record stating that he can't be bothered to read everything he puts his signature on.

In The Miami Herald, he claims that he "took responsibility" for his company's actions.
"What happens in companies is that you have to take responsibility for what happens under your watch.  Mistakes that were made you take responsibility as CEO and you do everything you can to make sure those things don't happen. What I tell people is that's what I'll do as governor.''
Footage from his actual testimony:

The man who started with nothing and ended up running a multi-billion dollar hospital chain doesn't know what "predecessor" means.  Or "chain" (as in his hospital chain).  Or "occupancy."  Or "market." 

He'd have us believe that he didn't know anything about what his company was doing; and he's running on the strength of his administration of that company.

And what about Sink, and the fines her company paid?  Investigators didn't find her to be involved in it in any way.

Sink has been very open, meeting with all 16 of Florida's major daily newspapers, and answering questions posed by their editorial boards.  Scott refused to sit down with any of the newspapers' editorial boards. And his childish response, when it was pointed out that all 16 newspapers are endorsing Sink?
"Most of them endorsed Barack Obama. You're an Obama liberal. That's why they endorsed you," he said.
- Palm Beach Post.
Interesting theory, but I have a better one; since you wouldn't talk with any of them, they went with the candidate who came across as open and honest: the one who bothered to talk with them.

I have no doubt that Rick Scott would run Florida the way he ran Columbia/HCA; defraud taxpayers as a matter of course, sign anything put before him, and claim not to know why Floridians are paying through the nose.

October 24, 2010

Ripped from the Headlines

As Dave Barry would say, "I'm Not Making This Up."

The following is an actual headline, published in the Palm Beach Post on October 24, 2010.

Foul....fowl...dead ducks...that's a groaner.

October 23, 2010

Meet Mark S. Roth: Hillcrest's Biggest Asshole

WPLG Channel 10 brings us a chilling story.  Imagine you park your car in your assigned spot at your condominium.  It's your car, it's paid for, done deal.  It's your spot, paid for.

You go out of town.  And while you're away, the condo association decides to re-pave the lot.  And when you come back,  you no longer have a car.

That's what happened to Diana Lilue.  She left, knowing her car was safe and secure at home.  Only, it wasn't. 

Now, the association could have had the car towed to another parking lot in the complex.  It could have had it towed off-site, and returned.  It could have charged the owner to do this, in either case, and been fully justified to do so.

Instead, Mark S. Roth, president of the condo association and the worst neighbor in human history, told the towing company to "tow it away."  Which they did.  And then they sold the $15,000 car for $1,448.88 to cover the cost of towing it and storing it.

Technically, it wasn't stolen, so she can't collect insurance on it. 

Technically, the towing company was legally engaged to remove it.

Technically, the yawning cesspool jokingly referred to as "condo law" permits the association to remove vehicles that were in the way.

But, as noted above, it could have been moved to another location, or returned later.  The towing company even states that that is what most condo associations do.  After all, at the end of the day, your fellow condo owner is your neighbor.  Just because a thing is legal, it does not follow that it is right.  Roth's action, while legal, was humanly irresponsible.

But Mark S. Roth apparently doesn't give a shit about his neighbors, or doing a turn for someone who is ultimately a partner in a cooperative venture.  He's the kind of sleazeball who gives condo associations a bad name.  He's the guy who's made the term "condo association" derogatory.

And of course, he knows he's an asshole.  Given a chance to tell Channel 10 that it was simply "an association matter" or that "it was nothing personal,"  Roth intead completely ignores reporter Jeff Weinsier, marching up to the condo's concierge desk and demanding that the police be called to remove the reporter and his crew.

"But we're guests of Diana (Lilue)!" Wiensier protested.  "You're not guests of the association!" Roth barks.

How does an asshole like Roth live with himself?  Easy - he's an asshole.  Asshole's just don't give a sh*t about other people.

So watch out if you're near Hollywood's Hillcrest Condominium - it's being run by an asshole.

October 8, 2010

Flash Back Redux

Rick over at South Florida Daily Blog posted a Slinky commercial, which reminded me of this "classic" from the Ren & Stimpy Show (back before it sucked).