Hallandale Beach Blog -A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt., public policy, sports scene and pop culture of the U.S., South Florida and Europe, especially the UK and Sweden. In particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood & Aventura. Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln. Pictured in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A; September 2008 photo by me, South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

re Sonia Sotomayor ruling that teen's blog post created a created "foreseeable risk of substantial disruption"

May 28th, 2009
4:30 p.m.

You may've already heard about this particular case involving Sonia Sotomayor already, but just in case... Matt Drudge had a link to this great story this afternoon. 
I should admit up front, too, that I'm a big proponent of having battle of the bands, so my sympathy is with this high school student, Avery Doninger.


Sotomayor Ruled in "D-Bag Case"- Ruled teen's blog post created a created "foreseeable risk of substantial disruption"

by Yvonne Nava and Leanne GendreauMay 28, 2009

http://www.nbcconnecticut.com/news/local/Critics-unhappy-with-Sotomayors-role-in-CT-free-speech-case.html

To better illustrate how this article above gives us more insight into Sonia Sotomayorper a previous blog post here and email to many people in the community about two months ago, about how much local School Boards might spend in San Diego for their national convention while decrying all the cuts they're being forced to make, i.e. actually spend within their economic means for a change, just consider what would've happened if this HS student, Avery Doninger, this contemporary Nancy Drew, this possible future Medill grad, had lived in Miami-Dade or Broward County, and decided she had the perfect idea for a blog post.

To highlight the phony crocodile tears aspect of these folks who run the school system she's a lab rat in, she decided to highlight the curious spending patterns and policies of the School Board and their administrators and minions when using taxpayer funds during the current economic situation, to the dire Sky-is-falling threats they were issuing, no more new erasers and chalk and textbooks and... she files public records requests to document how much Superintendent Jim Notter's or Roberto Carvalho's School Board Crowd was spending in San Diego, and also sees how that compares with how much had been spent in the past on previous such jaunts, and seeks to determine if there was any difference in the number of personnel attending.

Weeks later, after subjecting these grown men and women, these government employees, to a degree
of accountability, oversight and resulting ridicule in her blog by drowning them in indisputable facts, what do you think would happen?

Do you honestly have any doubt that as actually happened, local Educrats would get their revenge by having her labeled a troublemaker, and prevent her from participating in student govt. as some sort of crude punishment?
If you don't think that would happen here,you live in some other part of South Florida that I'm not familiar with, so could you tell me where that magical place is?

These are the very same people whose brilliance is responsible for a wink-wink policy of putting up
barriers to news reporters from finding out the facts after a kid has been arrested at a school for bringing a weapon, as happened to Channel 10's Glenna Milberg while she was doing a story at Hallandale Adult/Community last Fall.

Her cameraman showed some spunk and shot video of some school official with a walkie talkie running excitedly towards them while they were on public property -parking lot?- and when they said they wanted to talk to the school's principal, he got all angry and yelled "No!"
Like he was at Checkpoint Charlie in Berlin or something.


It was both preposterous and yet typical of many local South Florida government types, esp people connected to the School systems.

In her piece, Glenna had a great voice-over on this footage that was shot, commenting -I'm paraphrasing- that the school seemed more concerned with stopping her and her cameraman from getting some actual facts and inteviewing a responsible party at the school than they were in actually stopping weapons from coming onto campus!

Touché!
Milberg shoots and she scores!


It seems clear from the record that in the hypothetical example I've described here, just as the article says, Sotomayor would imply that the facts didn't really matter, even if Doninger was actually doing the public some good by getting that info out.
Which is no surprise, since Sotomayor proved in the New Haven case that she supports the role and power of government, not the rights of individuals, and she'd rule against the student the same way.



Washington Post
The Wreck of a Spoils System
By George F. Will 
April 26, 2009

So tell me again how her nomination is great for those with opposing or minority point-of-views to the powerful or status quo?

And when do we actually hear who her corporate clients were after she did her time with DA Robert Morgenthau in NY? 
Why is that still such a secret all these days later?

Also, for more on Sotomayor please see these great PolitickerNY articles that I was tipped-off to by my daily New York Observer email:
1.) The Many Rabbis of Sonia Sotomayor by Jason Horowitz
and,
2) The Sotomayor Attacks: 2012 Republicans Throw Red Meat
to a Shrinking Base by Steve Kornacki

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Could Sonia Sotomayor be elected judge in Broward County in 2009? You mean Mitch Caesar's Broward? No!

Could Sonia Sotomayor be elected judge in Broward County
in 2009?
You mean Mitch Caesar's Broward?
No!

I'm not joking.

Broward's ethnic identity politics groups at
Century Village
aren't down with Hispanics, remember?
To prove it, in August they voted against THE most-qualified
of all the judicial candidates, in part, because he was Hispanic.

Yes, that's the Broward you live in, not the phony one that
Broward/Greater FTL CVB tourism flack Nikki Grossman tries
to sell to foreigners with a lot of -you pardon the expression-
dinero!

This first article is from a conservative website but has the
specific legal info that's most germane that other pieces plainly
lack.
Like anything in the Herald or their blogs or by Beth Reinhard.
whose post earlier this afternoon on Sotomayor was silly X two.

You know, like the real facts about what really happened,
instead of silly indulgent puff pieces that would have you
believe the nominee is actually Chita Rivera with a robe,

My own belief is that when those New Haven firefighters start
showing up in Washington in a few weeks to make the media
rounds, THAT'S when it's going to start getting VERY interesting!

Now we'll find out if Obama really is the first post-racial president
his pals in the media kept telling us he was before the election.
Me, I think not, which is why this pick will be delicious by late
August.

By then, I suspect we'll have started hearing from Italian union
members in Northeast Democratic congressional districts and
well-know Jewish writers opining in NY Times Op-Eds and
Chinese-American twenty-somethings in the Bay Area ALL
wondering aloud "What's the purpose in studying for a civil
service exam if your actual merit on the test doesn't really
matter?
If it can just be dis-regarded?"

That's when the rubber-meets-the road!
We'll see who's gloating in Washington then, since that's not
an argument that Obama & Comnpany can win.

If nothing else, we know from the early reactions around
Washington that we shouldn't hold our breath thinking the
MSM is going to do any original reporting on Sotomayor
over the summer, with Politico's Mike Allen already
having admitted as much this afternoon on MSNBC.

Like I was really surprised by that!

From the early balloting, it looks like a lot of MSM
journos will be mailing it in this summer -even more
so than usual.
----------------------------------------
Possible Obama Supreme Court Pick Slapped Down Reverse Discrimination
Case in One-Paragraph Opinion
Friday, May 08, 2009
By Matt Cover

U.S. Appeals Court Judge Sonia Sotomayor, mentioned as a possible Supreme Court nominee, voted to deny a racial discrimination claim in a 2008 decision. She dismissed the case in a one-paragraph statement that, in the opinion of one dissenting judge, ignored the evidence and did not even address the constitutional issues raised by the case.
---------------------------------
Washington Post

The Wreck of a Spoils System

By George F. Will
April 26, 2009

Wednesday morning, a lawyer defending in the Supreme Court what the city of New Haven, Conn., did to Frank Ricci and 17 other white firefighters (including one Hispanic) was not 20 seconds into his argument when Chief Justice John Roberts interrupted to ask: Would it have been lawful if the city had decided to disregard the results of the exam to select firefighters for promotion because it selected too many black and too few white candidates?

In 2003, the city gave promotion exams -- prepared by a firm specializing in employment tests, and approved, as federal law requires, by independent experts -- to 118 candidates, 27 of them black. None of the blacks did well enough to qualify for the 15 immediately available promotions. After a rabble-rousing minister with close ties to the mayor disrupted meetings and warned of dire political consequences if the city promoted persons from the list generated by the exams, the city said: No one will be promoted.

The city called this a "race-neutral" outcome because no group was disadvantaged more than any other. So, New Haven's idea of equal treatment is to equally deny promotions to those who did not earn them and those, including Ricci, who did.

Ricci may be the rock upon which America's racial spoils system finally founders. He prepared for the 2003 exams by quitting his second job, buying the more than $1,000 worth of books the city recommended, paying to have them read onto audiotapes (he is dyslexic), taking practice tests and submitting to practice interviews. His studying -- sometimes 13 hours a day -- earned him the sixth-highest score on the exam. He and others denied promotions sued, charging violations of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the Constitution's guarantee of equal protection of the law.

The city claims that the 1964 act compelled it to disregard the exam results. The act makes it unlawful for employers to discriminate against an individual regarding the "terms, conditions, or privileges of employment because of such individual's race." And two Senate supporters of the 1964 act, both of them leading liberals (Pennsylvania Democrat Joseph Clark and New Jersey Republican Clifford Case), insisted that it would not require "that employers abandon bona fide qualification tests where, because of differences in background and educations, members of some groups are able to perform better on these tests than members of other groups."

In a 1971 case, however, the Supreme Court sowed confusion by holding that the 1964 act proscribes not only overt discrimination but also "practices that are fair in form, but discriminatory in operation." What New Haven ignored is that the court, while proscribing tests that were "discriminatory" in having a "disparate impact" on certain preferred minorities, has held that a disparate impact is unlawful only if there is, and the employer refuses to adopt, an equally valid measurement of competence that would have less disparate impact, or if the measurement is not relevant to "business necessity." One of the city's flimsy excuses for disregarding its exam results was that someone from a rival exam-writing firm said that although he had not read the exam the city used, his company could write a better one.

New Haven has not defended its implicit quota system as a remedy for previous discrimination and has not justified it as a way of achieving "diversity," which can be a permissible objective for schools' admissions policies but not in employment decisions. Rather, the city says that it was justified in ignoring the exam results because otherwise it might have faced a "disparate impact" lawsuit.

So, to avoid defending the defensible in court, it did the indefensible. It used anxiety about a potential challenge under a statute to justify its violation of the Constitution. And it got sued.

Racial spoils systems must involve incessant mischief because they require a rhetorical fog of euphemisms and blurry categories (e.g., "race-conscious" measures that somehow do not constitute racial discrimination) to obscure stark facts, such as: If Ricci and half a dozen others who earned high scores were not white, the city would have proceeded with the promotions.

Some supporters of New Haven, perhaps recognizing intellectual bankruptcy when defending it, propose a squishy fudge: Return the case to the trial court to clarify the city's motivation. But the motivation is obvious: to profit politically from what Roberts has called the "sordid business" of "divvying us up by race."

Reader comments: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/04/24/AR2009042402305_Comments.html

--------------------------------
the "Invisible" candidate who defeated Catalina Avalos

A CONVERSATION WITH IAN RICHARDS

Sept. 9, 2008
---------------------------------
Talk Back South Florida blog
South Florida Sun-Sentinel Editorial Board

WHO IS IAN RICHARDS, AND WHY SHOULD WE CARE?

by Doug Lyons
August 29, 2008
By Gary Stein

Quickie quiz: Who is Ian Richards?

You don't know? Don't feel bad. I have no idea who he is, either, and I'm the one who dreamed up that question. Richards, it turns out, was a political winner Tuesday, taking the County Court Group 27 seat. He did it by defeating an incumbent, Catalina M. Avalos.

It is unusual for incumbent judges to be challenges, and even more unusual for them to be defeated unless they have done something hellaciously awful. Yet three incumbent Broward judges who hadn't made negative headlines - Avalos, Julio Gonzalez in County Group 18, and Pedro E. Dijols in Circuit Group 3 - all lost Tuesday night.

None was more of a head-scratcher than Richard beating Avalos. Richards, you see, didn't even bother showing up for a candidate interview with the Sun-Sentinel Editorial Board. That is certainly his right, but it does make you wonder how much somebody really wants the job if they don't even attempt to get a newspaper endorsement.
-------------------------------
Daily Business Review
Eddie Dominguez is executive editor of the Daily Business Review
Commentary
Crawling over each other doesn’t help diversify
Ian Richards is no crusader for change at the Broward County Courthouse.
By Eddie Dominguez
September 22, 2008
By: Eddie Domingue

His victory over County Court Judge Catalina Avalos might anger a lot of powerful lawyers — the New Times and the bloggers behind the Broward courthouse blog seem to relish that. But framing his win over Avalos as anything more than a sad comment on the state of judicial elections in Broward County is grossly inaccurate.

Richards mounted virtually no campaign. Broward voters barely had a clue about his background. How could they? He practices in Miami Gardens. Before that he worked at the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office. He made few campaign appearances, had few signs around town — and they didn’t have his picture on them either.

Read rest of essay at:

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Latest Poll Info from Rasmussen Reports on Govt. Spending Echoes South Florida Voters' Sentiment

Excerpts from an email that I sent out Friday to some of the
concerned citizens and elected officials of this city and region,
and the South Florida press.
-------------------------------------------
April 28, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier

Just received some very interesting info this morning
from Rasmussen Reports via their free daily updates,
something you might want to consider getting as well.

The article, below, on voter sentiment regarding govt.
spending was just released at 10:30 a.m. this morning,
and is exactly in line with everything I hear from public
policy types and politically-involved citizens at events
I attend throughout South Florida, yet other than with
the recent case with BSO, the Broward Sheriff's Office,
which has gotten a lot of media attention, where exactly
are the meaningful yet intelligent cuts in govt. spending
that you can point to that ought to have been forthcoming?

77% See Politicians Unwillingness to Cut Government
Spending as Bigger Problem Than Voter Resistance to
Tax Hikes


Where are the media reports showing examples of local govt.
getting smarter and slimmer thru technology, that were all
the rage just a few years ago?
The manana bureaucracy I encounter in South Florida on a
daily basis seems as dysfunctional and non-responsive as ever,
with our own city of Hallandale Beach being Ground Zero
for dysfunctional govt. for reasons that we all can recite.


April 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier


April 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier

Perfect example of govt. dysfunction: Last August
at the city's public budget meeting at HB City Hall, I specifically
challenged HB City Manager Mike Good and his staff to explain
the logic of the city persisting for years in using garbage cans
without lids at THE windiest place in the whole city
-the public beach.
(It's not like that last fact is 'Breaking News'.)

His response: lots of talk. no action, just like his
promise moments later to place blue recycling
bins on the beach itself.

The logical results are self-evident to anyone, above,
a photo from a Saturday last month around 3 p.m. or so.
Nine long months later, the city still uses the same exact
garbage receptacles, sans lids, which is part of why the
beach is SO dumpy and unattractive, and there are
still no blue recycling bins on the public beach,
where beach-goers actually are, to make encourage it,
not make it impossible.


Here in Hallandale Beach, fellow citizens and residents
appealing improperly-cited code violations from the
city still get a very rude, lethargic and combative response
from City Hall when availing themselves of their rights
under the state's Sunshine Laws to get public records
they need to successfully appeal.

Hallandale Beach police officers get approval to drive their
police cars even farther into the far western Broward suburbs
to get home -at Hallandale Beach taxpayer's expense.

Yet the public beach here that is so terribly maintained is
NEVER patrolled by these same HB police officers in ways
that are even remotely comparable to our neighbors,
especially on three-day holiday weekends like this one.

Everyone who ever goes to the beach knows this is true,
it's "common knowledge," but HB City Manager Mike
Good and Mayor Joy Cooper and their Rubber Stamp
Crew just shrug their shoulders, like they have no real power
to change that policy, or create a new positive dynamic.
That's just another reason why they are each so personally
contemptible -their sheer laziness and apathy.

April 28, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier
Above, hen coming home to roost in Hallandale Beach
about wasteful govt. spending and utter lack of competency?

The contractor lifeguards are literally overwhelmed on
these sorts of weekends, yet the HB Police will NEVER
be seen on or near the beach except in the case of an
actual emergency, despite how large the crowds will get,
the amount of illegal/underage drinking taking place
in public, etc.

I'll be there late Sunday morning before returning home
for the Indy 500 telecast and will record the scene with
some photos before I leave, which you'll see soon.
Prediction: it will be just like last year's Memorial Day
Weekend... and the year before that and the year before....

To me, it'll be very interesting to see whether or not
-or to what extent- South Florida pols and those
in Tallahassee are able to resist this popular citizen
sentiment that this Rasmussen Report pinpoints,
the one that for some citizens, found catharsis thru
the recent Tea Party movement that the Miami
Herald and Beth Reinhard ignored for months
while other media round the country covered it
like a real story.
And what effect, if any, that sentiment will have on
South Florida pols in the next 16 months before the
Nov. 2010 election.

Will they accept the new economic/spending paradigm,
or will some, like the tone-deaf Broward School Board
and its administrators, with their fatal obsession with
large pots of construction money and lobbyists' money
and largesse, for a dysfunctional system that is actually
losing students and their tax-paying parents in droves,
persist in their old parochial views, and keep calling this
a temporary hiccup, eager to go back to their prior
ruinous spending behavior?

Channel 4's Jim DeFede has some thoughts on
South Florida's bureaucracy and fixes his gaze south on
Miami-Dade County and the very unhelpful 311 "Help Line"
that M-D taxpayers are paying for, but being poorly-served
by:
DeFede: Why I Hate Miami-Dade 311

Have a safe Memorial Day holiday and remember what
and whom we honor this weekend!

Just as an FYI, my earliest ancestor who fought for this
country once marched from Alexandria, VA with
Capt. George Washington and other colonists as part
of General Braddock's long march to the French-controlled
Fort Duquesne in Pittsburgh.

Years later, under very different circumstances,
he served as a Revolutionary War spy for General
George Washington against the British Army
he'd once fought alongside.

After the war, for his brave efforts, he received
a large parcel of land north of Steubenville, Ohio
-where the first Federal Land Grant office
was later located- which is why my ancestors
were among the very first citizens of Ohio,
having crossed the Ohio River and relocated from Washington Township, PA, south of Pittsburgh, even before Ohio became a state in 1803.
-----------------------

For more info on recent developments with BSO
and their budget battles with the County Commission,
please see WFOR's Ted Scouten's report from Monday
Details Emerge About BSO Layoffs


and some other recent BSO stories at

Also take a look at these two Scott Wyman blog posts from
Friday's Sun-Sentinel Broward Politics blog:
County savings targeted in fight over budget deficit
Some older elements and building blocks formerly seen at Hallandale Beach Blog, such as photos, graphics and videos have been moved into cold storage. Visit them again or see what you've missed at: http://hallandale-beach-blog.blogspot.com/
Unless otherwise indicated, all ORIGINAL photos appearing here were taken by myself. The use or modification of original photos or original images appearing on this blog WITHOUT the written permission of the author is expressly prohibited. DO NOT modify or alter any original photo/image on this blog and use it in any other media, whether for commercial advertising, marketing purposes, political campaign advertising, or on any Social Media platform or digital media forum. Do NOT modify or alter the photos or use them in a confusing way that suggests sponsorship or endorsement, or in a way that seeks to confuse Hallandale Beach Blog with another blog. This includes but is not limited to sites such as Dipity, Facebook, flickr, MySpace, Pinterest, Posterous, Topsy, Twitter, YouTube or VIMEO. Original photos and images also can NOT be used as avatars or icons on website forums.

Me in the Summer of 2016

Me in the Summer of 2016
Above, me in June, pre-recent haircut, near acres and acres of orange groves off Scenic U.S. #17 in Frostproof, FL, while visiting hot/humid Central Florida, which I'm convinced is where heat/humidity goes in the Summer to get away from it all... The oppressive heat & humidity there is literally everywhere you go. :-(

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation
"In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation." -South Beach Hoosier, 2007.

North Miami Beach Senior High School, the Home of the Chargers

North Miami Beach Senior High School, the Home of the Chargers
Before I was a Hoosier, I was an NMB Charger, Class of 1979.