And You Thought The FL Legislature Couldn’t Get Crazier

 Legislature, Politics  Comments Off on And You Thought The FL Legislature Couldn’t Get Crazier
Aug 012009
 

Never sell the wingnut Replublicans in the Florida Legislature short. Last year they were busy saving us all from Automobile Testicles, and tried to eliminate daylight savings time (the logic being it would be less confusing for Senator Bill Posey). So now, two of our distinguished legislators have called for a Florida Constitutional Amendment to prohibit Floridians from participating in, an as yet non-existent, healthcare insurance reform.

So Rep. Scott Plakon and Sen. Carey Baker have introduce a Constitution Amendment that says:florida

To preserve the freedom of all residents of the state to provide for their own health care:

A law or rule shall not compel, directly or indirectly, any person, employer, or health care provider to participate in any health care system.I called the offices of both.

How very Orwellian of them, protecting your freedom by removing your options. Who is more free than the man who has no obligation to choose?

Tom in Baker’s office tells me that this has no teeth…it’s just designed to send a message to Washington. You know, because the State of Florida has unlimited resources for operating the legislature and conducting elections on things that “have no teeth.”

Now Brandon Delanois in Rep. Plakon’s office was the most entertaining. First, he explained that he was, prior to going to work for the Representative, paying for his own health insurance, and had a plan for only $15.00 per month, but of course, refused to tell me what company was providing plans for only $15.00 per month.

I asked, “so the people who don’t have health insurance…who pays for them when they get sick?” His answer was, “Anyone can go to an emergency room and get care. They won’t turn away anyone.” Of course I pressed him on who he thought paid for that “free” care at the ER. He finally agreed it was taxpayers.

But his argument was that the government should not mandate how people behave, and what choices they make. That the government should not require people to purchase insurance. So I asked him if the Representative would introduce a bill to rescind the law requiring that Florida residents who drive have auto insurance. Well, as you might imagine. according to him, that’s not the same thing.

The jest of what I got out of this is that these two dweebs are merely playing for votes and publicity. I think we should give it to them, and not stop talking about how much it costs the taxpayers to pay for uninsured people, and just how much it costs the taxpayers for each bill that introduced, and what it costs to have a Constitutional Amendment on the ballot. You know, since Florida has so much surplus money floating around.

And You Thought The FL Legislature Couldn't Get Crazier

 Featured, Legislature, Politics  Comments Off on And You Thought The FL Legislature Couldn't Get Crazier
Aug 012009
 

Never sell the wingnut Replublicans in the Florida Legislature short. Last year they were busy saving us all from Automobile Testicles, and tried to eliminate daylight savings time (the logic being it would be less confusing for Senator Bill Posey). So now, two of our distinguished legislators have called for a Florida Constitutional Amendment to prohibit Floridians from participating in, an as yet non-existent, healthcare insurance reform.

So Rep. Scott Plakon and Sen. Carey Baker have introduce a Constitution Amendment that says:florida

To preserve the freedom of all residents of the state to provide for their own health care:

A law or rule shall not compel, directly or indirectly, any person, employer, or health care provider to participate in any health care system.I called the offices of both.

How very Orwellian of them, protecting your freedom by removing your options. Who is more free than the man who has no obligation to choose?

Tom in Baker’s office tells me that this has no teeth…it’s just designed to send a message to Washington. You know, because the State of Florida has unlimited resources for operating the legislature and conducting elections on things that “have no teeth.”

Now Brandon Delanois in Rep. Plakon’s office was the most entertaining. First, he explained that he was, prior to going to work for the Representative, paying for his own health insurance, and had a plan for only $15.00 per month, but of course, refused to tell me what company was providing plans for only $15.00 per month.

I asked, “so the people who don’t have health insurance…who pays for them when they get sick?” His answer was, “Anyone can go to an emergency room and get care. They won’t turn away anyone.” Of course I pressed him on who he thought paid for that “free” care at the ER. He finally agreed it was taxpayers.

But his argument was that the government should not mandate how people behave, and what choices they make. That the government should not require people to purchase insurance. So I asked him if the Representative would introduce a bill to rescind the law requiring that Florida residents who drive have auto insurance. Well, as you might imagine. according to him, that’s not the same thing.

The jest of what I got out of this is that these two dweebs are merely playing for votes and publicity. I think we should give it to them, and not stop talking about how much it costs the taxpayers to pay for uninsured people, and just how much it costs the taxpayers for each bill that introduced, and what it costs to have a Constitutional Amendment on the ballot. You know, since Florida has so much surplus money floating around.

Craig and Vitter Sponsor Marriage Protection Amendment

 Constitution, Featured, Gay Issues, Politics, Religion, Right Wingnuts, Society  Comments Off on Craig and Vitter Sponsor Marriage Protection Amendment
Jul 022008
 

It’s not really surprising to find that a small group of Republican Senators re-introduced the Federal Marriage Amendment to write discrimination into the U.S. Constitution. After all, they are mostly behind in the polls, the base is distraught and disorganized, and even fund raising isn’t going so well. I mean even if the bill has no chance of even getting a hearing, nothing gets the blood pumping for krazy kristian kooks like a good homo bashing.

David_Vitter.jpgWhat you might find interesting though is that two of the original 10 sponsors is Larry “I have a wide stance” Craig (R-Idaho) and David “I heart hookers” Vitter (R-LA). Sometimes the silly shit just writes itself. Come on…Larry Craig was caught trying to hook up with a hot cop in an airport Larry Craigrestroom, and David Vitter used to let hookers put him in diapers. Both were married at the time…so just which marriage and family values are we trying to protect here.

These are people who want to pontificate on the sanctity of holy matrimony? They’d better hope St. Peter enjoys irony, and has a sense of humor.

Apr 302008
 
This entry is part 1 of 35 in the series Gay Marriage

This is the final in the series analyzing the debate between John Stemberger and Nadine Smith at the Orlando Tiger Bay club luncheon. This debate was held on March 27, 2008. This will analyze the Question and Answer section, and the closing comments by Smith and Stemberger.

As noted in a comment on a previous article in the series, “Studies of places that have a high “creativity quotient, which attract talented young people to move to these places, show that acceptance of LGBT folks is high on the list of criteria that these young folks look for, when they consider moving.” In light of that, the first question from the audience concerns the fact that fully one-half of Fortune 500 companies offer domestic partner benefits. The questioner points out that they probably don’t do this to pay more for insurance, but to attract talent. His question is, won’t this make it more difficult for Florida to attract talented people? Continue reading »

Jun 252006
 

I’ve let the dust settle some from the recent insistence of Congressional Republicans to throw their “base” a bone. I am referring to, of course, the recent attempt to ingrain discrimination against gay people into the Constitution.

I naturally called my Senators. I expressed by belief to the intern answering the phone in Mel Martinez’s office that protecting marriage was best done by making divorce illegal. I asked her if the Senator would introduce appropriate legislation to make divorce illegal, given his strongly stated desire to “protect marriage.” I guess I might have stumbled across one of the few honest people on Capitol Hill. This young lady told me, “the Senator’s not interested in protecting marriage, he’s interested in protecting the definition of marriage.”

There is something queer about this Senate crusade to outlaw gay marriage. If you listen closely, the leaders who oppose single-sex unions refuse to talk about gay people. They talk about activist judges, welfare rolls, the rights of voters and the birthrate of single mothers in Scandinavia. But there is not a gay man, a lesbian woman or a bisexual teenager in the mix.

Kansas Republican Sam Brownback, a 2008 presidential contender, led the charge for a constitutional amendment on the Senate floor , dominating the debate with a handful of blue-and-white charts that he said showed the need to ban same-sex marriage. He had line graphs, bar graphs and circle graphs. He spoke about French law and Dutch sociology. He went on about the benefits of two-parent families. “It’s important that a child be raised between a loving couple,” Brownback declared, a phrase that seemed, at first, to be an argument in favor of gay marriage. “Developmental problems are less common in two parent families.” He said that welfare encourages out-of-wedlock births and called for more research on marriage. But the Republican senator made no real mention of men who love men or women who love women.

In fact, the principal argument mounted by social conservative leaders like Brownback has more to do with the fragile state of heterosexual marriage than homosexuality. Their convoluted logic works like this: If society approves of long-term homosexual monogamy, then the “institution of marriage” will be weakened. This will lead straight people to abandon monogamy and harm the welfare of the nation’s children, who benefit from stable, two-parent families. “Our policies should aim to strengthen families, not undermine them,” explained President Bush in his Monday address to amendment supporters. “And changing the definition of marriage would undermine the family structure.”

This is why Brownback has been spending so much time studying Nordic marriage trends. He believes there is a direct (albeit inverse) correlation between gay marriage and heterosexual fidelity. “Where gay marriage finds acceptance, marriage virtually ceased to exist,” he said in the Senate, reading aloud from one of his big blue-and-white posters, this one labeled “Scandinavia.” “The institution no longer means much of anything.”

These straight-marriage-in-trouble arguments are everywhere in the current debate. They had dominated a press conference in the Capitol, just a few feet off the Senate floor. “When marriage declines, children and society suffer,” explained Matt Daniels, the founder of the Alliance for Marriage, an umbrella group of churches and synagogues that wrote the anti-gay-marriage amendment. “Violent crime, youth crime, welfare dependency and child poverty track more closely with family breakdown than with any other social variable, including race and income level.”

Continue reading »