Tag Archives: Rick Scott

Absolutely not interested in being Governor of all of Florida

Gov. Scott has not publicly stated his reasons for the rejections.

Only Governor of half the people.

How much respect does the indicted-insurance-fraud (who invoked the Fifth Amendment 75 times) hold for half the people of this state? Zero. Zilch.

From today’s Tampa Bay Times:

TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott, seeking to bring the court system more in line with his conservative outlook, has repeatedly rejected lists recommended to him by the Florida Bar of lawyers seeking to screen candidates for judgeships.

Scott has rejected dozens of attorneys the Bar has nominated to serve on judicial nominating commissions, created decades ago to professionalize the bench and make merit and qualifications at least as important as political connections.

“He wants people with humility,” says Scott’s chief counsel, Pete Antonacci, “and he wants judges who will follow the law and not make it up as they go along.”

The Bar said Scott’s two predecessors, Charlie Crist and Jeb Bush, never rejected any of its nominees. The governor has rejected the lists 16 times and has never publicly given a reason and is not required to do so.

Scott has sent back so many Bar-recommended names that the group keeps a five-page spreadsheet to track them.

Pure ideology.

Governor Voldemort has a better idea because he knows all about health care.

My Gov don’t like him none of that Muslim-Keynan Obamacare stuff. He’s no fan of Medicare/Medicaid either (even though his criminal abuse of both made him and his co-conspirators millions). Nevertheless, we the people chose him to run things here in Florida, trusting, I assume, that he’d gotten ethically born-again.

He knows – made it clear on Day One – that Obamacare is not for Florida and so has refused to institute any of the legally mandated reforms. He has a better idea. States, he says:

. . . can do a better job . . . we should have 50 laboratories to see which is the best approach.

Yeah, that’ll work.

Here’s a little summary of his earlier career as head of Columbia/HCA (that’s Health Corporation of America):

On March 19, 1997, investigators from the FBI, the Internal Revenue Service and the Department of Health and Human Services served search warrants at Columbia/HCA facilities in El Paso and on dozens of doctors with suspected ties to the company.[21] The Columbia/HCA board of directors pressured Scott to resign as Chairman and CEO following the inquiry.[22]He was paid $9.88 million in a settlement. He also left owning 10 million shares of stock worth over $350 million.[23][24][25] In 1999, Columbia/HCA changed its name back to HCA, Inc.

I always like that getting rewarded with $10million dollars for screwing up your company part. It’s the new American way you know. Also, job creators.

In the settlements,  Columbia/HCA pled guilty and agreed to a $600+ million fine in the largest fraud settlement in US history. They admitted systematically overcharging the government . . . They also admitted fraudulently billing Medicare and other health programs by inflating the seriousness of diagnoses and to giving doctors partnerships in company hospitals as a kickback for the doctors referring patients to HCA. They filed false cost reports, fraudulently billing Medicare . . .  In addition, they gave doctors “loans” never intending to be repaid, free rent, free office furniture, and free drugs from hospital pharmacies.

That ‘overcharging the government’ part? That’s us, that’s taxpayer money he stole.

In late 2002, HCA agreed to pay the U.S. government $631 million, plus interest, and pay $17.5 million to state Medicaid agencies, in addition to $250 million paid up to that point to resolve outstanding Medicare expense claims.[26]In all, civil law suits cost HCA more than $2 billion to settle, by far the largest fraud settlement in US history.[27]

 

Muslim-commie League of Women Voters back in business

 

I am not done yet!

Gov. Voldemort loses one to Florida’s citizenry and the Leauge of Women Voters! From my paper’s Tallahassee bureau this morning:

Faced with the prospect of harsh penalties under Florida’s new elections law, the League of Women Voters of Florida has been unable to register voters for the last year — an unprecedented hiatus in the civic group’s 72-year history.

“It’s been a very difficult year for us,” said Deirdre Macnab, president of the League in Florida. “It’s had a big, big impact for our organizations.”

Since the Republican-led Legislature passed a broad election law last spring, registration drives by third-party groups, inclulding the League, have ground to a halt in the state. But those registration drives are expected to begin anew with U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle’s temporary injunction against the 48-hour limit, which the judge described as a “virtually impossible burden” on the third-party groups

 

 

Why I’m so proud to be a Floridian

They don’t even bother to hide what they’re doing anymore. They’re for sale to whoever comes up with the check. Gimme the money, I’ll pass you a nice new law. More here.

Free Lego Man!

Here in SW Florida, a serious civil liberties issue is brewing.  Ego Leonard (left) was enjoying an innocent afternoon on Siesta Key when a paranoid citizen dialed 911. And the fellow was taken into custody.

Ego’s a big fella – 8 feet tall and, um, husky, but that wasn’t enough to save himself from the grasp of Sheriff’s deputies. They grabbed him, and excused their outrategous act by saying he’s ‘property’. That’s nonsense of course – one might as well say corporations are people which we know is ridiculous.

The Sheriff’s office, claiming they don’t know who owns’ this ‘property’ now has him confined, possibly in chains!  Oh, the indignity, the humiliation.

Lego Man wears a t-shirt with a mysterious message. Even now linguists at universities around the country (none in Florida; our Governor won’t permit it) are poring over the enigmatic words “No Real Than You Are” trying to  discern their meaning (it does sound a bit like something from Stephen Colbert, does it not?).

And meanwhile, as this innocent fellow is in the crude custody of government, good civil libertarians (as well as those artsy types) continue the good fight. Lego Man will not be abandoned. Lego Man will be free!

Why I am going back to bed

I got two hours of sleep last night and I’m too old for that to be okay. So I was up much earlier than usual and at 6:00 am I turned on the TV for Morning Joe, which I rarely watch but what the hell else is on at 6am.

Cable box went out. I did the routine, unplugged, checked connections, gave it time, waited out the interminable Comcast reboot process. And the cable box went out.

Called Comcast. Spent 29 minutes (I timed it) on the phone (19 on hold). Their service reps are usually pretty good and even helpful, but the guy this morning must have been having a bad hair day. Eventually he sent a reset signal. And the cable box went out.  Need new box.This is the third time. All recordings will be lost. First service availability is Sunday; six days without service. Unacceptable. Comcast clearly hasn’t enough personnel to service their customers (and, I assume, really doesn’t care because in my area they’re all there is). I will rip the box from it’s hidey hole and carry it to Comcast. Where there will be a long line. I will try not to cry.

In my email this morning I find a dangerous dispute underway amongst my fellow Trustees (very local Endowment Trust). Beyond disagreement. This is not going to be pleasant and threatens to undo eight years of work. I will not think about it any more today. Tomorrow perhaps.

Also in my email this morning: Verizon tells me I’ve exceeded my monthly contract allowance on my cell and minutes are now being charged at a rate I’d rather not know about. But! But! “My account” at their website says no, no, not at all. Usage is in fact down. I must deal with Verizon. Which is best done in person and is possible because there’s a friendly store nearby. But I’m pissed anyway.

Am meeting my brother and his wife for lunch. Haven’t seen them since May, during which time I’ve lost quite a bit of weight which has made me feel great and look good! But we all know about odd family dynamics, right? When I got up this morning, I found that I’ve gained 20 pounds since last night.

And then. And then. Dear Elvis, and then I picked up my morning paper.

  • U.N. says Afghans torture detainees

KABUL, Afghanistan — Detainees are hung by their hands and beaten with cables, and in some cases their genitals are twisted until the prisoners lose consciousness at sites run by the Afghan intelligence service and the Afghan National Police, according to a United Nations report released here on Monday.

  • Gov. Scott targets university funding – not a disaster in itself; like most things it all ‘depends’. But:

Scott said that Rick Perry — the Texas governor and Republican presidential candidate — planted higher education reform in the Florida governor’s mind when the two met shortly after Scott’s election.

“He said, ‘I’ve got this plan in Texas, you ought to look at it,’” Scott recalled.

Perry was referring to the “Seven Breakthrough Solutions” policy paper created by Texas businessman Jeff Sandefer. A successful entrepreneur and energy investor, Sandefer also taught business classes part-time at the University of Texas until the school began hiring more full-time tenured professors.

Sandefer became an outspoken critic of state universities, particularly the system for promoting faculty. Tenure, critics say, places too much emphasis on research. To be promoted, faculty must publish original work. As a result, they spend less time in the classroom and often delegate teaching to graduate students.

(Ahhh. Inspiration from a State with the worst education record in the country. Way to go gov.)

  • Foreign plants and insects have slipped undetected into the US since 9/11, as customs agents were re-assigned to anti-terrorism, causing in some cases, devastating damage. It’s cost hundreds of millions – especially in CA and FL – in lost crops and higher grocery prices.

I don’t expect tomorrow will be any better.

Making Florida safe for Democrats again

My governor, Rick Scott, is hitting new lows in approval and has gone from 22% disapproval to 57% in just six months. Good work gov. Brings to mind some oldies but goodies. My favorite line? “I’m not sure what ‘market’ means.”

For those who don’t know, Columbia HCA, founded by Scott and of which he was the CEO, had to pay the largest civil criminal fine in US history for massive Medicare fraud.

Florida Republicans hate trains unless Dagny Taggart builds them

These work just fine!

Jeb Bush and now Gov. Voldemort – along with our friggin’ insance  legislature – share a scorn for the wishes of the electorate.

Around the time he got his brother elected President, Jeb discarded the results of a voter referendum in which over 60% of the voters demanded creation of a light rail project between Tampa and Orlando. Jep said  “pshaw”. Pshaw he said.

So lobbyists were chosen (financed by who the hell knows),and a multi multi million dollar advertising campaign was launched; they appealed to the segment of the electorate who have the memory of gopher turtles and could be counted on to rise up to stop a gobmint takeover of our nonexistent rails system. It worked and they got a repeal on the next ballot. It worked and bye bye rail.

Now cometh Voldemort with a legislature even more insane than the earlier one. When, as our share of the 2010 stimulus, the Feds offered a few hundred million to start building some in-State rail (and create thousands of jobs in the process), the Gov said – in one of his first acts as governor –  pshaw: give it to someone else, we don’t take charity here. So Congress gave it to Ohio. (Even John Kasich knew a good deal when he saw one.)

The leg ‘s new target is an amendment approved in 2010 by 63% of the voters to reform the completely corrupted re-districting process.

Of course money is pouring in again to turn this one around.

UPDATE: I wrote more about the redistricting effort here. (I actually forgot!)

Florida as fiefdom. Rick Scott’s fiefdom.

“Rick Scott doesn’t seem to care about Florida.”  –  Florida Senator Dan Gelber in a blog post.  (Gelber was the 2010 Democratic candidate for FL Attorney General.)

In just 6 months Rick Scott has dismantled our growth management laws and eliminated Florida Forever (the land conservation program) to allow developers to completely pave over our state; he successfully convinced the legislature to gut education spending in order to provide special interest tax breaks; he’s shown utter contempt for Florida’s open government traditions by operating more secretively than any other administration; he gave property insurance companies the green light to raise rates as they see fit; and advanced policies that will make our state’s oldest and poorest nothing more than profit centers for health insurers. And that’s just the beginning.

Scott is treating Florida much like the companies he bought and sold in his business life. Buy a company, reengineer it so it can be sold for a quick profit and let it’s defects become someone else’s problems down the road.

I’m going to be up all night reading

All Rick Scott, all the time! Words! Pictures! Abundant linkie, linkie! Even videos! I’ve just discovered Beach Peanuts.

Am trying to leave a comment over there, but it’s not posting. So perhaps this pingback will attract the attention of the blogger inkberry. If so and the good lady stops over, here is what I tried to say:

A random link just brought me here and I’m so glad to have found you. Now, instead of finishing the Rick Scott post I keep trying to close but never can because the damn news pours in too fast . . . I can just send people over to you. Which I’ll happily do. Great work.

Rick Scott least popular governor in the US of A

Voldemort is in the house

I hope all my Republican and Tea Party neighbors who elected this fool are dropping their blinders. His numbers began sliding down the day after inauguration and have been moving downward since.

Scott will be a one-termer and if Florida’s buyers remorse is strong enough, he may take our legislature – a grouping of more fools – down with him. Oh please, please, please.

From the Miami Herald today:

Gov. Rick Scott is one of the least popular governors in America, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll that shows 57 percent of voters disapprove of his job performance.

Only 29 percent favor the job Scott is doing, the poll of 1,196 registered voters shows. . . .

Scott’s numbers have deteriorated from mediocre to bad ever since he took office. In February, a month after he took office, only 35 percent favored Scott’s job performance. Then, in April, his disapproval rating more than doubled to 48 percent.

The Republican-led Legislature, which typically has low approval ratings, has a similar job-approval rating as Scott with 56 percent disapproving and only 27 percent registering approval.

But it’s not just the state budget that’s a drag on the Legislature and Scott. The poll shows that a big portion of voters, 63 percent, say property insurance is getting more difficult and 59 percent say there needs to be more regulation of the insurance market. Yet Scott and the Legislature say it’s time for fewer regulations.

Liberal comebacks to Republican lies

POSTED BY ORHAN

In a recent post, Robert Reich catalogs and rebuts the biggest whoppers spun by the Republicans regarding job creation:

“Cutting taxes on the rich creates jobs.” Nope. Trickle-down economics has been tried for thirty years and hasn’t worked. After George W. Bush cut taxes on the rich, far fewer jobs were created than after Bill Clinton raised them in the 1990s.

“Cutting corporate income taxes creates jobs.” Baloney. American corporations don’t need tax cuts. They’re sitting on over $1.5 trillion of cash right now. They won’t invest it in additional capacity or jobs because they don’t see enough customers out there with enough money in their pockets to buy what the additional capacity would produce. Florida Governor Rick Scott, for example, says his proposed corporate tax cuts “will give Florida a competitive edge in attracting jobs.” They’ll also require education spending be reduced by $3 billion. Florida already ranks near the bottom in per-pupil spending and has one of nation’s lowest graduation rates. If Scott’s tax cuts create jobs, most will pay peanuts.

“Cuts in wages and benefits create jobs.” Congressional Republicans and their state counterparts repeat this lie incessantly. It also lies behind corporate America’s incessant demand for wage and benefit concessions – and corporate and state battles against unions. But it’s dead wrong. Meager wages and benefits are reducing the spending power of tens of millions of American workers, which is prolonging the jobs recession.

“Regulations kill jobs.” Congressional Republicans are using this whopper to justify their attempts to defund regulatory agencies. Regulations whose costs to business exceed their benefits to the public are unwarranted, of course, but reasonable regulation is necessary to avoid everything from nuclear meltdowns to oil spills to mine disasters to food contamination – all of which we’ve sadly witnessed.

“Cutting the federal deficit will create jobs.” It’s not true. Cutting the deficit will create fewer jobs. Less government spending reduces overall demand. This is particularly worrisome when, as now, consumers and businesses are still holding back. Fewer government workers will have paychecks to buy stuff from other Americans, some of whom in turn will lose their jobs without enough customers.

Reich calls on the President to refute these claims loud and long, before they become conventional wisdom. He can’t understand Obama’s silence in the face of the Republican onslaught.

My crooked governor

He’s so crooked, he’s a blockbuster movie all by himself. He just escaped indictment last time, although his company was fined $1.7 billion for Medicare fraud. Also, he doesn’t blink. I do not trust people who don’t blink.

(For some weeks, I’ve been trying to write a comprehensive post on my new governor but the stories are popping up with such frequency I can’t finish the thing!)

The good governor is now setting up another sweetheart deal for himself per this at Washington Monthly.

Before inexplicably becoming the governor of the state of Florida, Republican Rick Scott’s most notable accomplishment was pulling off a major health care scam, defrauding taxpayers, and narrowly avoiding a criminal indictment.

That felonious background is of particular interest given Scott’s new scheme to “reform” Medicaid, which may make him an even wealthier man.

. . . Scott is pushing a controversial measure that stands to put millions of tax dollars into his own family’s bank account, profiting from a government-run health care plan after running on a platform in opposition to government-run health care.

The whole story is here.  The company of which he ‘divested himself’ is now wholly owned by his wife. And it’s poised to make tens of millions if the proposed legislation passes.

An oldie. A goodie. My gov.

New gov, just like that old gov

Friend Ed brings this, from The Herald Tribune, to my attention this morning:

I want it my way.

Rick Scott, our interesting new Governor, was elected on the same ballot on which the people voted by 63% to approve two constitutional amendments that would force lawmakers to follow new standards for redrawing congressional and legislative districts.

But that doesn’t float Rick’s boat, so he has cavalierly thrown a wrench into the works. Under law, Florida is required to ask the US Justice Department to review the changes (because of past fraud here in cracker heaven). That request went in automatically, but Gov. Scott just withdrew it. For not a single proper reason.

“Florida’s top election office in December asked the federal government to review the two amendments. Former Gov. Charlie Crist supported both measures. But the Scott administration withdrew that request on Jan. 7, or three days after Scott became governor.”

I think the word is disdain – for the law and for the people. Scott was elected with 46% of the vote. The amendments were approved with 63% of the vote. Gives him a clear mandate dontcha see.

The legislature and the Florida Republicans are out to kill the amendments, and if the example set by former gov Jeb Bush is any guide, they may succeed.

(Jeb Bush was horrified when a high speed rail referendum passed overwhelmingly in the same election in which he won his second term.  Jeb got a bit red in the face, stamped his foot and said  “I don’t care what they voted for we just won’t do it in fact we’ll just delay it, force it back onto the next ballot and then hire lobbyists to make the stupid people vote against what they just voted for. Yeah, that’s the ticket!” He did. We did. )

Let the games begin.

It’s 12:07 pm on January 4, 2011 . . .

. . . .and all over the country,  governors are being sworn into office. My own new chief executive, Rick Scott-the-near-felon, just signed in for for his new job. My knees are shaking. Scott is a great admirer of California’s disastrous Proposition 13, which -20 years ago – sent that state on the road to financial ruin. They were famously pushed over the edge by our friends at Enron – remember Enron and Kenny boy?

Just now he is promising to reduce property taxes and business taxes. Great, maybe we can grow some revenues on the citrus trees.

If Scott can fix some things here, well good for him. But I believe in the deepest parts of my soul, that he will make things worse. Oh Florida . . .

Because that worked so well for California

My newly elected Governor – almost-felon Rick Scott – has big plans for Florida. First, he’s going to  get those taxes reduced because, after all “census data ranked Florida’s tax burden [only*] 36th-lowest among 50 states, behind even Mississippi.”

* Hey Florida! We can do better than that! Let’s shoot for 46th! Who needs schools or courts for heaven’s sake?

“Scott’s plan would take Florida in a direction similar to California in 1978, when voters passed Proposition 13 . . . Proposition 13 capped property taxes and bred three decades of combat over paying for schools, police, fire protection andother government services.”

Proposition 13 also took the world’s 7th largest economy and sent it into a tailspin, the horrific results of which have been playing out for the last 32 years.

This just boggles the mind. I don’t think you could locate anyone today who would call Prop 13 a success. But Scott likes it fine and thinks my State is just the place to try it again.

The story, by the fine David Hackett, explores the possible outcomes now that the GOP has been swept into all the State offices and both houses of the legislature.

Florida statehouse

The St. Pete Times is saying that there’s a snafu in Hillsborough County (Tampa metro) that may hold up the vote count there for many hours. So although the-biggest-Medicare-fraudster-in-history-Rick-Scott continues to have a slight lead over Alex Sink, it could be skewed by the Hillsborough problem. Please,  please, please, please . . .

UPDATE: That Tampa Bay problem is not likely to be a game changer – it only affects two days of early votes – about 38,000 votes.

Home sweet state

Only in Florida. Only here. Really. Take a look at this.  We’re increasingly famous for electoral idiocy.

A major felon (should be a felon anyway) and the subject of one of the biggest fines ever levied by the Federal Government against a private company, thought it’d be cool to run for Governor. What the hell? Plenty money for ads: check. Voters are jerks: check. Memories are short – really short: check. Give it a shot.

He has been running a multi-million dollar blitz of  TV ads. And today, a Quinnipiac poll says that this excuse for a human being is jumping ahead of  former Congressman and current Attorney General Bill McCollum in the GOP primary. I could sleep very well if McCollum never again held political office, but fer cryin’ out loud, he’s an honorable public servant and the other guy is a crook!

“”Mothers may tell their children that money can’t buy happiness, but what these results show is that money can buy enough television ads to make political neophytes serious contenders for major political office,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.”

The primary is August 24. I ask my fellow Floridians – please, please snap out of it ! Let’s bring the curtain down on this circus.

Meanwhile, meet Rick Scott, who is currently leading McCollum 44-31.

UPDATE: In the comments, sekanblogger points out that at least Florida is not South Carolina. There is that.