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Florida's District 1 (Pensacola) hangs its head in shame!

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Trump’s Best Buddy in Congress Wants Sessions to Fire Mueller

'I still think there’s time for Jeff Sessions to do the right thing,' Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz says.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions should rescind his recusal on the investigation into Russia’s interference with the 2016 election, haul in special counsel Robert Mueller and order him to reveal any evidence of collusion that would justify continuing the special counsel’s probe, says Congressman Matt Gaetz. And if that evidence doesn’t exist, the Florida Republican says, “then let’s go ahead and wrap this thing up.”


https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/04/03/matt-gaetz-trump-sessions-mueller-recuse-217764



But wait, there's more:  (All from the same source)

Gaetz, 35, has become as much as anyone an avatar of Congress and the GOP and Washington in the age of Trump. He does not have much experience, but he stresses what he’s learned from it. He does not have much inside knowledge of the Mueller probe, but he knows exactly what he thinks of it. He talks about how awful Washington is, but he’s become a prominent presence in it. He’s the son of a locally famous politician who helped get him where he is, but now he’s a proud Trump protege.


Here he is talking about Trump:

“He’s always very funny and very laudatory, and he’s one of the great showmen of a political generation. And so I think that there’s a certain element of the president that wants to confer onto others some of his skills,” Gaetz said. “I think he said one time that I should smile more when he thought I wasn’t smiling enough. And told me he liked my new haircut.”



Jesus, the mind reels! It doesn't stop there: He thinks Trump's campaign could not have colluded with Russia because it was too incompetent.

Gaetz likens Russia’s 2016 involvement to “emptying a thimble of vinegar into the ocean hoping to change its chemical composition.” And anyway, Trump’s campaign was too much of a mess to have been up to anything like collusion.

“The Trump campaign was lurching from one event to the next. I had some familiarity with the campaign. I spoke at, I think, four of the Trump rallies that were in Florida, and these were not highly coordinated events. I would often learn of the program of one of these events just a day or so before the event itself,” Gaetz said. “That seems to evidence the point that these were not people off colluding with Russia.”



He also wants to investigate Obama:

The president who needs to be investigated more, Gaetz believes, is Barack Obama. Asked if he thinks Obama wiretapped Trump—as the president alleged in a tweet a year ago and never provided evidence of despite staff insisting he would—Gaetz said, “I believe the Obama administration did.”

“I think we’ve still got to pull the thread on that sweater.



But there's hope:

Not everyone loves how Gaetz is appearing: He’s facing a primary challenge back home in his Panhandle district (where the Republican nomination is all that matters) from a 2016 opponent who’s come back at him, attacking him for being a fake conservative and a career politician.


Gaetz won this district by almost 70% to 30! Aye yi yi!

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Gaetz has a Republican challenger, Dosev, who is about equal to Gaetz in the ick factor.  But Phil Ehr, the Democrat, has a fighting chance.


Lauren Hagy
Boston University c/o 2022
Jul 17, 2017

Make Congress Work For You: Phil Ehr’s Campaign for Congress

A student’s experience thus far volunteering for Phil Ehr’s campaign


There, I met some incredible teenagers from across the country who all had one common goal: to advance the ideals and ideas of the Democratic party. We were all there to figure out how to best use our HSDA clubs to make a difference. I returned to Gulf Breeze, FL excited about finding ways for my own HSDA chapter to get involved in local politics.

I emailed the Escambia County Democratic Party and found out they were having a phone banking event and were interested in having my chapter come and volunteer. It was at that phone banking event that I first met Phil Ehr. I knew Phil was military before he even said a word. He proceeded to ask if any of my group of Pensacola High School students knew what prominent military figure had graduated from PHS. Of course, none of us knew. In this way, Phil reminds me of my grandfather. My grandfather, like Phil, served in the Navy. He was affectionately known as “the answer man” by my family simply because he had an abundance of fun facts and knowledge about the world.

Continuing on my quest to be more involved in local politics, my Vice-Chair and I attended a Democratic Women’s Club meeting a few weeks ago. To our surprise, Phil Ehr was there too. The meeting concerned the fate of public education, an issue that Mr. Ehr has listed among his priorities. Phil is involved in every way that he can — a quality that I find to be very promising. He is in touch with the everyday Americans living in District 1, a quality our current Representative lacks. Twisted Evil  Twisted Evil  Twisted Evil  Twisted Evil  Twisted Evil  Twisted Evil  Twisted Evil  Twisted Evil  Twisted Evil  Twisted Evil

Clearly a nod to his past in the Navy, Mr. Ehr’s campaign announcement was held in the Veterans’ Memorial Park in downtown Pensacola, FL. Despite the threat of rain, a team of volunteers arrived an hour and a half early to set up. Although the Pensacola HS Democrats is not at liberty to endorse Mr. Ehr’s campaign, the Co-Chairs, Vice-Chair, and Financial Director were all present and held flags during the ceremony. Our members who had not yet met Phil all remarked how kind, respectful, and down-to-earth he is. For example, as soon as he arrived, he made sure to greet everyone at the event that he could before it was time to start.

Mr. Ehr was a Republican for thirty years. In his speech today, he acknowledged this and reminded his audience that his switch to the Democratic party was motivated by the Republican party’s failure to value the interests of working class Americans. It is important to remember, particularly in Mr. Ehr’s case, that it is one’s values and not the group one “belongs” to that truly matter. He does not support the privatization of our beaches. He will fight for the future of public education. He will protect Americans’ rights to opportunity for quality education, healthcare, and security. No matter what party you identify with, Mr. Ehr represents your interests. It was an honor to meet Phil Ehr and to participate in his campaign announcement ceremony today. I look forward to working with him in the future and I encourage readers to visit his campaign website:

http://www.ehrforcongress.com/



https://medium.com/@hagylaurenk/make-congress-work-for-you-phil-ehrs-campaign-for-congress-c8b630263780

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Floridatexan wrote:He does not support the privatization of our beaches.

"Privatization of our beaches" is a complete misnomer when it comes to title for already private leaseholds on Pensacola Beach, which do NOT impinge on the publicly owned beachfronts as is the case on most other Florida beaches. Ehr doesn't get this.  He won't get my vote.

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Oh, boy, here we go, RealLinda's nano-issue.

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Public access to private beaches to be affected by new Florida law

Thaddeus Mast, thaddeus.mast@naplesnews.com; 239-263-4764 Published 12:33 p.m. ET March 28, 2018 | Updated 6:11 p.m. ET March 28, 2018


"Local governments will have a more difficult time ensuring public access to some of Florida’s prized beaches after Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill from the legislative session.

The new law will restrict a local government’s ability to pass customary-use ordinances, which are needed for ensuring public access to private beaches.

A judge now will decide whether the public can walk or sunbathe on privately owned sand.

The sand below the high tide line always is open to walking, fishing and other beach activities. Anything landward could be private property, just like someone’s front yard.

More: Bill requiring courts to decide public access to private beaches heads to Gov. Rick Scott's desk

More: Bills would require Florida courts decide whether private beaches be open to public

More: Who owns Florida's beaches? Private landowner rights can clash with public beach access

Like the sand along Naples Pier, many beaches around the state are owned by governments and open to the public.

But land along Vanderbilt Beach in North Naples, for example, is privately owned, though used by many visitors during the winter and spring.

Just south of the Vanderbilt Beach parking garage, The Ritz-Carlton resort property line stretches onto the beach, as evidenced by beach chairs for hotel guests. Its beaches now are partly open to other sunbathers, but fences used to bisect the sand at the property line.

Public anger spurred a Collier County response, and the hotel now restricts some of the beach to its guests only during the peak 30 days of the tourist season.

The fence was one of the few times Collier County had to deal with an obvious public-private rights contest on the beach, and it ended with an uneasy understanding instead of a solid policy decision.

Some homeowners take a subtler approach, posting “no trespassing” signs near the beach to keep away relaxing sunbathers, loud partiers and other visitors.

But few landowners take any additional steps such as a fence or calling law enforcement officers because of trespassing.

Walton County, between Pensacola and Panama City in the Panhandle, will feel the brunt of the new law. A customary-use ordinance allowing visitors to walk, sunbathe and picnic on private beaches was enacted a year ago. The ordinance will end July 1 when the state law signed last week goes into effect.

“We fought hard for this (customary-use ordinance),” Walton County Commissioner Tony Anderson said at a recent meeting. “We’re going to continue. As long as I’m on this board and drawing a breath, we’ll continue to fight for this.”

Walton County already was entangled in a half-dozen lawsuits challenging various parts of the ordinance, and those likely will end.

Only one major ruling was made, and it was in favor of Walton County. A federal judge stated the commissioners had the authority to pass a customary-use ordinance. The ruling further stated property owners can challenge in court.

The new law circumvents that ruling. A city or county must submit one lawsuit to decide whether a beach fits the definition of customary use — ancient, reasonable, without interruption and free from dispute.

If a government is able to prove a strip of sand has been used by the public for many years regardless of private ownership, it likely will win the case.

An ordinance then could be passed to open the beach to the public.

Any private property owner could be involved in the suit.

Walton County likely will be the first to try the process and determine whether any changes to the law are needed.

However, bill sponsor state Sen. Kathleen Passidomo, R-Naples, said no new legislation concerning beach ownership is on her radar.

“It’s a good process, and hopefully (Walton County) can figure out that process,” she said.

https://www.naplesnews.com/story/news/local/2018/03/28/gov-rick-scott-signs-bill-affecting-public-access-private-beaches-florida/465452002/

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Floridatexan wrote:
Public access to private beaches to be affected by new Florida law

Thaddeus Mast, thaddeus.mast@naplesnews.com; 239-263-4764 Published 12:33 p.m. ET March 28, 2018 | Updated 6:11 p.m. ET March 28, 2018


"Local governments will have a more difficult time ensuring public access to some of Florida’s prized beaches after Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill from the legislative session.

The new law will restrict a local government’s ability to pass customary-use ordinances, which are needed for ensuring public access to private beaches.



What can a Representative do about that? Although I agree with the sentiment, I don't see what difference he can make--it's a State law, not a Federal one.

Besides, from the same article:

The sand below the high tide line always is open to walking, fishing and other beach activities. Anything landward could be private property, just like someone’s front yard.
 

Doesn't seem like such a big deal to me.

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The law FT is referencing doesn't apply to Pensacola Beach at all, since the lot lines here do NOT extend to the mean high tide line, but are strictly defined and measured lines, ending behind the dunes, not conflicting in any way with free passage along or use of the beaches. There is NO argument about who owns what here and can't be, but Ehr doesn't get it (nor, apparently, does FT).

If a fee simple title bill here ever comes back before Congress, Ehr will be the enemy. That's all I'm saying.

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RealLindaL wrote:The law FT is referencing doesn't apply to Pensacola Beach at all, since the lot lines  here do NOT extend to the mean high tide line, but are strictly defined and measured lines, ending behind the dunes, not conflicting in any way with free passage along or use of the beaches.   There is NO argument about who owns what here and can't be, but Ehr doesn't get it (nor, apparently, does FT).  

If a fee simple title bill here ever comes back before Congress, Ehr will be the enemy.  That's all I'm saying.

And this is "all I'm saying": You're willing to discount a solid candidate like Phil Ehr because of one line in an article stating that he doesn't support beach privatization, but you're all happy with little POS Gaetz giving the beach back to the feds. WTH is wrong with you? I SAID I would like to have beach residents get fee simple title, but that's not the case. What you bought was a lease; and I SAID it's an either/or proposition...either you have a lease or you have fee simple, BECAUSE EC has been imposing and collecting property taxes on beach owners. EC has lost; it appears the property taxes will be refunded.

Florida Supreme Court rejects Escambia County's request to consider beach tax case

https://www.pnj.com/story/news/local/pensacola/beaches/2018/04/04/florida-supreme-court-rejects-countys-request-consider-beach-tax-case/486401002/

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FT, will you please read this in its entirely for a change, and kindly respond?  Thanks in advance.

And this is "all I'm saying":  You're willing to discount a solid candidate like Phil Ehr because of one line in an article stating that he doesn't support beach privatization

Ever heard the old saw that to "assume" makes an ass out of you and me?  Look: it's far from simply "one line in an article."   Ehr has long been outspoken against title, including inspiring a completely misleading opinion piece last year on Pulse, in collaboration with our supposed beach citizens' representative on the SRIA, Thomas Campanella, who, along with his PNJ shill Melissa Nelson Gabriel, insists on repeating ad infinitum the absolute bald-faced lie that the leasing system here has anything whatsoever to do with making our beachfront situation different from most other Florida beaches, or in any way controlling development.   Campanella knows better and has been called out on this by Commissioner Robinson (I have proof), and Ehr has demonstrated his ignorance on the issue while not hesitating to cast his lot with a liar.

(Aside:  I have repeatedly called out the PNJ for perpetuating the lie, including supplying them the proof, and they continue to ignore the truth, obviously because they don't like it.)

Further, as previously indicated, "privatization" is another falsehood -- a word used to inspire fear on this issue, when the truth is one can't privatize what's ALREADY private, as the leaseholds most definitely are.  

but you're all happy with little POS Gaetz giving the beach back to the feds.  WTH is wrong with you?
 
WTH are you talking about, "giving the beach back to the feds."  HUH???? WHAT????  You know something no one else does?  Please fill me in.

As for Gaetz being a POS, that I agree with, more now than ever, and will never vote for him, either.  In fact, even though I know our chances for title are far greater under a Republican Congress, this independent won't be voting for any Republican in 2018 even if one happens to be a better candidate, and that's thanks to Donald Trump.   In a Gaetz vs Ehr race, I would simply have to abstain and let the chips fall where they may.  I can't vote for either one.

 I SAID I would like to have beach residents get fee simple title, but that's not the case.

It's "not the case" that you would like us to get fee simple title, or it's not the case that we will receive it?  If the latter, don't be so sure.   This will likely come up again, especially because EC is losing so many millions in revenue on a large percentage of leaseholds thanks to the recent court rulings you refer to.

What you bought was a lease;

Duh, really?

and I SAID it's an either/or proposition...either you have a lease or you have fee simple, BECAUSE EC has been imposing and collecting property taxes on beach owners.  EC has lost; it appears the property taxes will be refunded.

1. The ONLY taxes that will be refunded will be taxes on the LAND portion of the lease, and then ONLY on the condo complexes that have actually sued.  They were the only ones whose land taxes were escrowed.  Other Pensacola Beach properties which have similar lease language to the appellants' (i.e. which do NOT have perpetually renewing leases) are no longer being taxed on land, but will NOT have prior years' land taxes refunded.  I know, because I'm one of them.

2.  Taxes on improvements (which, just so you know, are often far higher than the land tax portion) continue to be levied on every single condo, house, and business on PBeach, despite the fact that there is absolutely no difference in the facts -- both land AND all buildings/improvements are owned by EC -- and despite the fact that those improvements are included under the exact same lease renewal language -- whether perpetual or not -- as applies to the land.  The short reason for this is purely poor legal representation back in the improvements tax cases, which locked us all into improvements taxes for the duration.

This entire tax situation is an ill-conceived holy MESS for many reasons I've gone into elsewhere, and the one and only cure is the option for title -- which will not, despite all the many, many lies and misrepresentations put forth by the rather hysterical opposition, change ANYTHING whatsoever when it comes to either beach development or the free use of the EC-OWNED GULF-FRONT BEACHES themselves.

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RealLindaL wrote:FT, will you please read this in its entirely for a change, and kindly respond?  Thanks in advance.

Start off with an insult. That's helpful.





RealLindaL wrote:What you bought was a lease;

Duh, really?

Caveat emptor!

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Deus X wrote:
RealLindaL wrote:FT, will you please read this in its entirely for a change, and kindly respond?  Thanks in advance.

Start off with an insult. That's helpful.

That was not an insult, but a serious plea. I have spent hours answering FT's comments on this issue but, like Emerald Ghost on the same topic, she will admit that for varying reasons she's rarely been able and/or willing to read and meaningfully respond over the past year or so.  This gets very discouraging, speaking of insults.   Look, I truly want to hear from her this time, especially about her mysterious comment re Gaetz handing our beaches back to the feds. (???)


RealLindaL wrote:What you bought was a lease;

Duh, really?

Caveat emptor!

This emptor knew perfectly well what she was buying, but, as FT gets at least partially right, the quid pro quo for no title was no property taxes, and that bargain was broken.

Care to heap any more on my head, oh perfect sir? I suppose in future I really should consult with you before posting.


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RealLindaL wrote:
Caveat emptor!

This emptor knew perfectly well what she was buying, but, as FT gets at least partially right, the quid pro quo for no title was no property taxes, and that bargain was broken.

Oh, boo-hoo-hoo, you got a bad deal, and now you're consumed with the unfairness of it all.  

You're living better than 99.99% of the people that have ever existed on this planet.

Let it go...   trust me, you'll be a lot happier.

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Deus X wrote:
RealLindaL wrote:
Caveat emptor!

This emptor knew perfectly well what she was buying, but, as FT gets at least partially right, the quid pro quo for no title was no property taxes, and that bargain was broken.

Oh, boo-hoo-hoo, you got a bad deal, and now you're consumed with the unfairness of it all.  

You're living better than 99.99% of the people that have ever existed on this planet.

Let it go...   trust me, you'll be a lot happier.


Despite the revealing name of "Deus," such a high-handed poster deserves no serious further reply other than this: Trust me, we'll all be happier if you take a long walk off a short pier.

Meanwhile, FT, I'd really like to know what you meant about Gaetz handing the beach back to the feds.

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RealLindaL wrote:
Despite the revealing name of "Deus," such a high-handed poster deserves no serious further reply other than this:   Trust me, we'll all be happier if you take a long walk off a short pier.

Ooooh! Musta struck a nerve.

You're living on the beach, hard by the Gulf of Mexico, still sniveling about how unfair it is and using that ONE issue as the deciding factor for how to vote. YOU'RE exactly why Florida District 1 has a guy like Gaetz for a congressman.

It's YOUR world, RealLinda, and we're all just living in it.

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Previously, from FT:

but you're all happy with little POS Gaetz giving the beach back to the feds.  WTH is wrong with you?
 
My response:

WTH are you talking about, "giving the beach back to the feds."  HUH???? WHAT????  You know something no one else does?  Please fill me in.

FT's reply, one week later:

CRICKETS.

Why am I not surprised??

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It requires some knowledge of how lots are platted and understanding that ownership does not go beyond those lot lines. PB and NB have abundant public access to the beaches, and this idea that leaseholders own to the tide mark is just ignorance plain and simple, yet that ignorance is leveraged because of the resentment of the "Yankees" who had the money to purchase on the beach. I just do not get this carpetbagger mentality. I get not liking the beach overcrowding. However, when people make up stuff or listen to somebody who does not know what they are talking about, it only takes a few minutes to get educated, and Linda tries......but I am convinced on this issue you will have better luck pounding your head on the wall. It also involves the greenies who did not like the development on the beach, and now want to lie about the facts. I love environmentalist who have common sense. Z always had my respect because of his work in government with the Florida environmental folks, yet he had commons sense about environmental issues as he saw real problems, not make chit up problems.

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Uh oh.

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2seaoat wrote:It requires some knowledge of how lots are platted and understanding that ownership does not go beyond those lot lines.  PB and NB have abundant public access to the beaches, and this idea that leaseholders own to the tide mark is just ignorance plain and simple, yet that ignorance is leveraged because of the resentment of the "Yankees" who had the money to purchase on the beach.  I just do not get this carpetbagger mentality.  I get not liking the beach overcrowding.  However, when people make up stuff or listen to somebody who does not know what they are talking about, it only takes a few minutes to get educated, and Linda tries......but I am convinced on this issue you will have better luck pounding your head on the wall.  It also involves the greenies who did not like the development on the beach, and now want to lie about the facts.  I love environmentalist who have common sense.   Z always had my respect because of his work in government with the Florida environmental folks, yet he had commons sense about environmental issues as he saw real problems, not make chit up problems.

Thanks for your solid, common sense comments, Sea -- SO refreshing. This is an issue you and I have largely agreed on for years -- including about the deep lack of knowledge and completely unfounded, rather paranoid fears that the opposition is largely based on.  

That said, I think fee simple title is a dead issue here for the near if not foreseeable future anyway.  The Escambia County Commission is trying to design other ways to retrieve at least part of the land tax revenue stream lost due to the recent court rulings on condos.  We'll see what they come up with.  Should be interesting, but doubtless won't result in consistency.  The only meaningful long term solution is title to our already private leaseholds -- a move that would be entirely transparent to the beach visitor, but that truth has been trashed with lies.

Meanwhile, leaseholders of all types of properties continue to pay taxes on the improvements they don't own either, whether or not their leases have perpetual renewal provisions.

It's all rather insane.

And although I'd love to see sweeping Democratic and/or Independent victories in November (virtually anything anti-Trump), the political reality is that, if that happens, fee simple is done for.  Understandably, the party of property rights is the party that has supported our cause.  This one they got right, but local lying Dems convinced Bill Nelson to derail the legislation, even though he'd previously pledged his co-sponsorship.  A deep disappointment.

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