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.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

New York Times does their condescending ethnic drive-by "gotcha' thing in Crist-Rubio FL Senate race

re 3/30 NYT's Caucus blog: Crist Backer Uses Ethnic Terms About Rubio

New York State is the home of the most ethnically-divisive
politics in
the country.
Candidates with not much to offer are continually
elected principally
because there are large number
of voters there whose first qualification
for someone
being elected to office is often that they are Black
or
Hispanic or Jewish or Italian or Puerto Rican.
That's their choice.
Period.

And we didn't sleepwalk thru the '80 and '90's like
certain of the Times
reporters seem to have,
who seem to forget that Jews in the United States

were killed because they were Jews, in the wrong
place at the wrong time,
not in Florida, Idaho,
Alabama or Arkansas, but in New York.

Multiple times.

I lived in the Chicago area in the mid-80's, when
Harold Washington was the first Black mayor
of Chicago, thanks in part to people I knew.

It was far-and-away the single-most racially-polarized
city in the United
States, and the Chicago-area
news media, especially the TV Network O&O's,
were
constantly looking for examples of New York
not quite being
God's Little Acre, as if that,
somehow, would make what was happening in
Chicago less worse.


But in their online blogs
New York Times reporters
are always conveniently forgetting this well-known
fact about
New York, and are always looking to
play "gotcha" somewhere else with
some remark
uttered by someone in a campaign that 99.99%
of the
population have never heard of.

Again, as if that somehow would make what was
happening in New York
less worse.

Sorry, but walking-up to uninformed voters and
saying, in essence, 'X just said this
about your
candidate. What do you think?
,' is
NOT reporting.

But it is why why when
Rush Limbaugh uses the
term drive-by media
as a pejorative, he's 100% right
so often.


Worse, the
New York Times writing this will now
give the reporters and columnists at
the Miami Herald
and other Florida newspapers the excuse they need

to once again write about this rather than issues
-
as if the majority of them really wanted to write
about issues instead of personalities, polls and
pithy anecdotes
.


Actually, I was being sarcastic in that last sentence.

The vast majority of reporters anywhere have
never needed an excuse
not to write about what
most citizens want to hear, as opposed to the

horse race aspect of a campaign they enjoy,

In case you forgot the facts, though,
here's a helpful reminder:


Number of Hispanic and Black governors and
U.S. Senators elected by
voters where the
New York Times has their HQ: zero.
Dozens of states had elected a female U.S.
Senator before New York elected their first,
Hillary Clinton in 2000

Number of Women elected governor by voters
where the
New York Times has their HQ: zero
Alabama had a female governor in the '60's,
Kentucky in the '80's.


Number of women elected mayor of New York
City by voters where the
New York Times
has
their HQ:
zero.

Dear New York Times reporters: You might
want to work on that troubling
ethnic and female
candidate aversion situation closer to home, dudes,

and while you're at it, your state legislature is
STILL THE most corrupt in the nation.

Why does
The New York Times continue to have
so little practical effect
on the state legislature
located closest to them?

Now THAT sounds like a story worth exploring.
Albany almost makes Tallahassee look clean.


Dear New York Times, you're welcome.
No charge for the consult.


------------------
New York Times The Caucus
The Politics and Government Blog of The Times
Crist Backer Uses Ethnic Terms About Rubio
By Damien Cave

http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/03/30/crist-backer-uses-ethnic-terms-about-rubio/


See also:
http://www.observer.com/politics

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Wednesday's N.E. Quadrant meeting in HB: a perfect opportunity to capture the angry mood of a city re over-development

Those of you who have called or written me in
the recent past and said that you'd have loved
to have covered this particular story earlier...
well, now you'll have your chance on Wednesday
night.
Mieux vaut tard que jamais.

Reminder
:
Next Wednesday, April 7th, is the
day that the Johnson Street RFP goes before
the Hollywood City Commission and the
commissioners finally get to pose questions to
the presenting teams, and vote for one team,
vote for both teams to proceed, or vote to start
over.

According to the City Manager's office, whom I
spoke to earlier today, their tentative schedule
is to have the regular City Commission meeting
at 1 p.m., the CRA meeting at 4 p.m. and their
combined CRA/City Commission meeting at 5 p.m.,
which is when the Johnson Street proposals
will come up.

I expect to have pared my video of the past
Johnson Street meetings down to the best
parts I recorded since last year and up on
the blog and YouTube page by this weekend,
so you might want to swing by and see what's there.

By the way, for those of you who don't know,
the DUO, pictured below, is located south of the
Diplomat Golf Course in HB and next to the
already commercially-zoned parcel the
Plumbers and Pipe Fitters Union already
owns that neighborhood residents can live with,
just as they are also okay with a new upscale
500-room hotel to replace the existing 60-room
building and a new adjoining small retail complex
to it, located in the center of the golf course.

We all genuinely wish they'd manage and market
the golf course better than they currently do,
so that more people would use it, but we don't
have any control over that.

It doesn't help, however, that they seem
completely disinclined to actually listen to
the honest criticism of the course by avid
golfers in the area, real consumers, as if the
self-evident problems will somehow resolve
themselves.

What the community and nearby Hollywood
residents oppose is the Diplomat's owner
proposal to build 4-5 more of these incompatible
out-of-scale condo towers in a single-family
residential neighborhood, on secondary roads,
and threatening the future of the golf course
if they do not get their way with the condos.

We will not let their threats and bluffs
go unanswered.



Below, DUO

Below, depiction of a Diplomat condo tower on Atlantic Shores Blvd.,

looking SE towards the Intracoastal and the Atlantic Ocean.


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Csaba Kulin
Date: Tue, Mar 30, 2010 at 12:56 PM
Subject: N.E. Quadrant Meeting


Hello Friends;
Tomorrow night, the City of Hallandale Beach will hold a "quadrant" meeting to INFORM US what is going on and ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS we may have.
This is OUR TIME to ask about the DIPLOMAT LAC. NO 3 MINUTE CLOCK. It is OPEN to ANYONE. Even if you do not live in the N.E. area. Even if you do not live in Hallandale.
It does not get any EASIER to let the Mayor and Commissioners know how you feel about MORE TRAFFIC, MORE DEVELOPMENT, MORE HIGH RISES etc.
How would you like to see 6 or 7 high rises the size of the DUO on Diplomat Parkway? 900 residential units plus the 500 room hotel on Diplomat Parkway?
With 3000 residential units approved, do you think we need another 950 units to be approved? We have a ton of vacant, unsold and foreclosed units.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010 6:30 P.M. Towers of Ocean View South, 600 Parkview Drive, HB.
WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT, TELL YOUR FRIENDS TO COME.
WEAR A RED SHIRT OR BLOUSE SEE YOU THERE WEDNESDAY NIGHT
Csaba Kulin
President, Fairways North, Inc.
VP United Condominium Association of Hallandale Beac
----------------------

from Csaba Kulin
to Commissioner Anthony Sanders
date Tue, Mar 30, 2010 at 2:57 PM
subject Broward County Commission Second Meeting on the Diplomat LAC

Honorable Commissioner Sanders;
We, the presidents, directors and residents of Fairways North, Inc., Fairways Inc., Fairways South, Inc. and Seventeenth Green Condominiums joined together in a coalition to be able to better represent out interests, wishes and desires. The 450 residential units of our 4 associations stand shoulder to shoulder with each other to protect our quality of life. I am sure that our collective voice will be more difficult to dismiss than each of us individually, now and in the future.
As you know, we have achieved something very seldom happens. The residents of HB with the help many others, were able stop BIG MONEY even if its is not the final vote. The most important thing that it "DID NOT PASS". As I understand the Diplomat can come back for an "other bite of the apple" in April.
I am sorry that you found it in your heart to speak up against us, but what BC Commissioner Diana Wasserman-Rubin said was that really bothered me. She said "my 1360 registered voters in the N.W. section of Hallandale Beach, which I represent, want me to vote in favor of approving the Diplomat LAC". That was our 5th vote we needed to stop the LAC.
The 1360 registered voters of N.W. represent 6.5% of the 20,200 registered voters of HB. They are welcome to do whatever is in their best interest.
On the other hand, Commissioner, you were also elected by the other 93.5% registered voters of HB, and that 93.5 does not want the Diplomat LAC.
You are all about jobs, jobs and jobs. I agree with you, but you know that jobs are in hotels and commercial buildings. Residential units DO NOT create jobs. The Diplomat is already zoned for a hotel and a large commercial building with stores and offices. Please do not listen to the fear tactics of the Diplomat.
On behalf of the "Fairways Coalition" I ask you to meet with me/us to discuss what you are able and willing to do to help us secure that most important FIFTH vote on BC Commission on April 27, 2010.
To the Diplomat it is money, to some others it is politics but for us it is our quality of life is at stake. Tell me how any elected official can be for either of the first two?
The following Associations and Individuals stood shoulder to shoulder with us in this epic struggle. Not everyone was able to be at the Commission Meeting in person for various reasons but I can assure you, they were there with us in spirit. I hope the announcement after our victory will include the name HB Commissioner Anthony Sanders.
  • Broward Coalition - President Charlotte Greenbarg
  • Fairways Coalition Members
  • Fairways South, Inc. President Michel LaPalme and Residents
  • Fairways Inc. President Colin Edwards and Residents
  • Fairways North, Inc. Board of Directors and Residents
  • Seventeenth Green, Hon. Don Boudria, P.C.
  • The Hemispheres President Julian Axelrod
  • United Condominium Association of Hallandale Beach President Louis Parades
  • Hollywood Lakes Section Civic Association President Terry Cantrell
  • Hallandale Beach Vice Mayor Bill Julian
  • Hallandale Beach Commissioner Keith London
  • Dave Smith
  • Catherine Kim Owens
  • Former Hallandale Beach Mayor Sonny Rosenberg
  • Drs. Bob and Judy Selz
  • Golden Condo Association President Beverly Carawan
  • Venetian Park Condo Association David Chizen
  • And many, many others with their e-mail, phone calls and going the meetings.
Thank You,
Csaba Kulin
President, Fairways North, Inc
VP United Condominium Association of Hallandale Beach

Monday, March 29, 2010

Thoughts on the Diplomat LAC proposal, now scheduled for April 27, and the economic threats the Westin Diplomat is now making. How low can they go?

From: Diplomat Properties, LP
Sent: Mon, Mar 29, 2010 11:24 am
Subject: Diplomat Returns to Broward County Commission for Final Vote on April 27


Diplomat Banner
The Diplomat LAC will return to the Broward County Commission for a final vote in the next few weeks. This follows a 4-4 tie vote at the public hearing on March 23, with one Commissioner not present.
Throughout the public review process, plans have continued to evolve in response to community and public officials' comments. Most recently, the residential buildings planned for parcel B have been reduced to 5 stories.
As a supporter, you understand how crucial the residential component is to preserving the golf course. Please help us get this message out. There will be no new hotel without a residential community within the project and there may be no golf course without the LAC.
We hope that you will e-mail or call the county commissioners whose no vote indicates that they don't yet appreciate this crucial linkage. Ask that they vote Yes to allow this important project to move forward. (Commissioners Jacobs, Wexler, Gunzburger and Keechl voted no; Commissioner Lieberman was not present.)
We appreciate everyone's support and will let you know the new County Commission meeting date as soon as it is confirmed.




http://campaign.constantcontact.com/render?v=001AOTdCtwnZM-kEPmDeh-ar8VKcVOHca1BcHUREzwyr-E98_8Ipi2GfpQ2T5JkGjKQEb2xnzKyOREwFtCMaB9_V3iwa7S31pUHDORP104kii1pwTUvcjrXi9bKWgPJdfeciXD24y-2tURUVHm94Pjq4u0SwIcO4qj4

I've told you all in previous emails and blog
posts here that the the union that owns the
Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa, as well
as the Golf Course, the Plumbers and Pipe
Fitters
, as well as hospitality management
company Starwood and the high-paid
lawyers, lobbyists and myriad consultants
they've retained, would engage in serial lies
and misrepresentation in order to get their
way, and they have.
Now, you can see it for yourself, above.

"There will be no new hotel without a
residential community within the project
and there may be no golf course without
the LAC.
"

Yes, they'll huff and they'll puff and they'll blow
the Diplomat's golf course up if they don't
get their way.
Cue the the Three Pigs!


The next vote on the Diplomat LAC will take
place before the Broward County Commission
on April 27th at 2 p.m., not the 13th as was
stated here earlier
.

So when is the South Florida news media
going to cover this story in a way that equates
to its actual importance to the community's
Quality-of-Life?

That's a good question.

After a number of conversations with people
in the area and around the county, I'll have
some thoughts to share in the next two weeks

on how we all think the Diplomat LAC proposal
-which you'll recall that Hallandale Beach
City Hall placed on the city's dreadful
website
for citizens to read
28 hours before the first
vote in mid-Decembe
r
- may affect interim
Broward Commissioner Albert C. Jones'
political future, as he seeks to get elected
to a position he was appointed to by
Gov. Charlie Crist
.

http://www.broward.org/district9/
http://gis.broward.org/maps/webPDFs/CommissionDistricts/comdist9.pdf

Jones
was one of the four votes for the
Diplomat
last Tuesday, yet curiously,
as of this afternoon, his
name still does
not appear on the posted candidates list
of the SOE.

http://www.browardsoe.org/electioncandidates.aspx?eid=89


So am I the only one who wonders why
are there no news stories about Comm.
Diana Waseerman-Rubin
, whose District
actually includes a small part of NW Hallandale
Beach, and how she barely(!) understands
what she is voting on with respect to this
matter, and why is she making no effort
to come to the actual area to see what's
at stake for local residents?

Is it because she thinks Hallandale Beach
City Comm.
Anthony Sanders has magical
powers that will ensure a huge turnout for her,
assuming her name is even on the ballot?

I'm sure that
Sanders political and campaign
support came up when she met Sanders
(and City Manager Good?) in person at the
city's Hepburn Center two weeks ago today,
but, days later, actually turned-down an
invitation from residents in the affected HB
neighborhood to see it from their ground-level
perspective.

She had no problem in driving east to Hallandale
Beach to meet with Comm. Sanders, but actual
HB residents, well, she made them come to her
office in West Park, one week ago today.

I guess she was afraid that if she really saw
what the residents were up against, it would
make it much harder for her to vote for the
Diplomat and against them, huh?

Better to keep their legitimate concerns as
an abstract idea, instead of real homes where
real people live.

Why isn't that curious choice of her's a
news story that serves as an entree into
the larger Diplomat story?


That's another good question.

Or what about Hallandale Beach mayor Joy Cooper
actually telephoning Diana Wasserman-Rubin
and telling her NOT to listen to the HB residents,
saying that they were naysaying "mavericks."

"Mavericks"?

No, just citizens of a city where the domineering,
thin-skinned mayor brooks no dissent, actively
engaging in participatory democracy despite
her disapproval.

That participatory democracy thing is something

she is, herself, deadly afraid of, which is why
she's okay with a City Hall-paid spy attending
meetings throughout the community for $2-3,000
a month, and reporting back to HB City Hall.

Wow, Joy Cooper speaking poorly about
HB residents behind their back, go figure?


But then if she's willing to call political opponents
of hers "Nazis" on City Hall property, inc. me,
and calling HB Comm. Keith London "a Hitler"
just moments later, it's really not so surprising.

That's how Joy Cooper rolls, as I've only been
saying here for years...

I spent some time over the weekend editing
all the
photos and hours of video I shot of the
Broward Planning Council meeting of
February, and last Tuesday's Broward County
Commission
, so that I can post them online
here and my under-utilized YouTube page
over the next few days,
http://www.youtube.com/user/hallandalebeachblog
so that not only the Hallandale Beach and
Hollywood communities can see what they
missed out on, but greater South Florida as well.

Perhaps they'll even pick-up on the general tenor

of the meetings, as well as the often mis-leading
information offered-up by many of our opponents.

That's especially the case with many local folks,
some of whom claim to have a connection to the
Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, who said
they were SO concerned about the economic
health of HB, but most of whom you and I have
NEVER seen before, not even at Hollywood
City Commission or CRA meetings, which I
frequently attend.

I don't really mind the people supporting the
Diplomat so much as their rather transparent
attempts to buffalo us in this process in such a
very condescending way, while acting like
they were the ones looking at "the big picture."

Yes, "
the big picture" that you might otherwise
recognize as your family's daily existence
hereabouts and their future.

No, actually, we were the ones doing that "big
picture
" scenario, they were the local opportunists
and butt-kissers looking at self-enrichment,
which is one of the reason that I found it so easy
to take some verbal shots at some of them during
my public comments, specifically referring to them
as "water carriers" for HB CIty Hall and the
Diplomat.

That's what they were,
Ann Taylor pantsuits
or not.

It was their smug attempts to seem intellectually
elevated that I found grating, especially since
you know they'd never tolerate multiple 25-30
story condo towers next to their own home in
a single family residential area.


Guess what?
A new idea is close to coming to fruition
with regard to this particular underdog effort.
After some preliminary conversations with
some well-informed citizens and civic activists
from both HB, Hollywood and beyond, who,
frankly, have grown tired of these artificial
turf
friends
of HB's economy speaking on
behalf of their personal greed, wallets and
purses, I've agreed to create a handy roster
here on this humble blog that will allow those
of you following this effort from the comfort
of your own home to know whom some
of the players are.

I'm going to create a list of the local people
who have spoken on behalf of the Diplomat
at government meetings and ridiculed the
legitimate concerns of the affected
neighborhood's citizens.


That list will likely include their name as well
as the name and location of their business,
if any.

If they have a business located in Hollywood,
Hallandale Beach or Aventura, I will endeavor
to take a photograph of that business so that
you all will be able to recognize it and associate
that particular business in your mind with
someone who's
perfectly content for your area's
Quality-of-Life to go
down the tubes.

In fact, felt so strongly about it that they said so
publicly. That's their choice.

Of course, some of these folks work in enterprises
where they are heavily-dependent on taxpayer
funds
for funding.
They sure don't act like it though.

Such an example is the Hallandale Beach Chamber
of Commerce, which last year got a brand new
office at taxpayer-built HB City Hall.
It's that room next to the HB City Commission
Chambers in the breezeway at City Hall.

The group's head
Patricia Genetti, whose
organization receives $50,000
of taxpayers
funds this year, much of it going towards
her
salary, has been an outspoken proponent of
the Diplomat's case.

Unlike the case in many parts of the country,
where these sorts of govt. financial relationships

require public disclosure whenever compensated
individuals speak before govt. agencies,
Patricia Genetti
has chosen to keep quiet about
that $50k of taxpayer loot, as she has spoken
in favor
of the Diplomat LAC before the
HB Planning
& Zoning meeting in mid-December,
the HB
City Commission meeting the very next day,
the Broward County Planning Council meeting in
late Febraury, plus last week's important Broward
County
Commission meeting that resulted in a
4-4 tie vote.


That's four separate meetings that I can think of
just off the top of my head, plus Genetti also
spoke
at length at the so-called informational
public meeting
the Diplomat was required to
hold at the
HB Cultural Center last year, where
she also
decided to keep mum about the taxpayer
money
she gets while speaking against the
interests
of the majority of HB's citizen taxpayers.

Some people will find this information valuable

and some will not, just as some may choose
to
tell friends and family about it and decide
that they
want to boycott those particular
businesses while for others, it has no practical
effect whatsoever.


It's your choice, of course, but now you'll have
the
information you need to decide whether
you want to
patronize those businesses or
boycott them.

You're welcome
.

TheWrap's Mikey Glazer imparts great Left Coast intelligence: "Shhhh ... 5 of Hollywood’s Secret Social Clubs"; Hoosiers and Hollywood

Hollywood, U.S.A. and the sign that lures the world

Great Left Coast intelligence at your fingertips

from our well-informed friends at...

TheWrap

Shhhh ... 5 of Hollywood’s Secret Social Clubs

From the poker table to the hardwood to the far right wing, these Hollywood hangouts require a Hollywood pedigree

By Mikey Glazer March 28, 2010

Yeah, that's right -- Hollywood has secret clubs. And it ain't that new spot Drai’s at the W in Hollywood.

For these clubs, it's not enough to know someone to get in. First you have to know they exist.

From hoops to poker to right-wing politics, they’re secretive in nature and selective in membership. And in an appropriate twist, TV super-spy (Zach Levi) belongs to two of them.

TheWrap went sleuthing to bring you the full reveal of Hollywood's secret social scene.

Read the rest of the story at:
http://www.thewrap.com/article/shhhh-5-hollywood%E2%80%99s-secret-social-clubs-revealed-15742


See also: http://www.thewrap.com/ and
http://www.youtube.com/user/thewrapnews


Was planning on running a photo of me with the
Hollywood sign behind me, circa 2000, but
couldn't
find it.

-----


Some Hollywood odds and ends from my other blog,

South Beach Hoosier

http://www.southbeachhoosier.blogspot.com/

Hoosiers in Hollywood are Making Their Mark!
But what they'd really like to do is "Direct..."

Hollywood Hoosiers -Bringing together Indiana University
alumni in the entertainment industry in LA and greater
SoCal
for the benefit of a grateful media-consuming nation.
http://www.hollywoodhoosiers.com/


Michael Uslan's funny 2006 IU Bloomington Commencement Address

Michael Uslan
, originator of the Batman films,
describes his long journey from Bloomington to Batman,
and it reads as funny now as it did the first time I read it.

Not unlike IU grad and media & technology genius Mark
Cuban
, this is one very smart, funny and insightful guy
who "gets it."


See
Cuban, Unembargoed from Indiana Alumni Magazine,
November/December 2004
http://www.alumni.indiana.edu/magazine/issues/200411/cuban.shtml

In an entertainment world that actually made sense, Uslan would already have an additional gig as the host of a popular and influential TV program dealing with the intersection of pop culture and media, and the tension between creatives and 'the suits,' but without NPR's usual pretensiousness or PBS' deadly earnest seriousness.

So, where is that program now, exactly, the one you'd expect to already find on Bravo if the Cable TV industry was really giving its viewers what they wanted?

Right now, all the good ideas for it are safe and sound in South Beach Hoosier's head!
http://www.indiana.edu/~ceremony/commencement/uslan_address.shtml


Indiana Hoosiers in the Film Industry, Past and Present

A good source for checking Hoosiers in the film industry
-
No, not Cary Grant pretending to be Cole Porter in
1946's Night & Day
-
is this one from a website run by
former Ball State prof. and chair of the IPAHF board,
and author of Hoosiers in Hollywood (Indiana Historical Press,
2006, $60)
David L. Smith.

It's currently accessible by subject
headings of Actors, Actresses,
Musicians, Composers, Directors, Screenwriters, Novelists,
Made in Indiana, Oscar Winners, The Silent Era, and
Non-Native Hoosiers.

http://www.whenmoviesweremovies.com/hoosiersintro.html


The simple insightful wisdom of Hoosiers in film
"A man's life ain't worth a hill of beans except he lives up to his own conscience."
-Jess Birdwell (Gary Cooper), in Friendly Persuasion, 1956
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0049233/

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Investigating a school beating that the Broward School system -and police?- want to ignore and sweep under the rug

By now, I had expected to have posted here any
number of stories that I've previously advertised
and referenced thru my emails and blog posts:

1.) Some keen analysis, photos and video of the
Broward County Commission meeting and vote
on the unpopular and out-of-scale Diplomat
LAC
proposal in Hallandale Beach, and why things
worked out the way they did, to the dismay of all
the Diplomat's high-paid lawyers and consultants,
as well as the bussed-in union workers, who were
paid to attend.
After they didn't win, some of the union workers
were heard grumbling in the hallways, "Does this
mean we won't be paid for showing-up?"


2.) That much-anticipated blog post re serial liar,
blowhard and back-stabber Alexander Lewy,
candidate for Hallandale Beach City Commission
and longtime Joy Cooper apologist, which was
to give you all a bit of an insider's look at his
ability to be so self-evidently two-faced and
condescending, while demanding to be taken
seriously at the same time.

His brand of ultra-insincerity takes
many years of
practice!

3.) Unmask the identity of the Hallandale Beach
City Hall-paid "spy," the carefully-selected
individual who has acted for years as Joy Cooper
and Mike Good's Secret Police, reporting
back to City Hall on what HB citizen taxpayers
like you and I said and did while we were simply
exercising our Constitutional rights to assemble
and speak our mind, even while this City Hall
crony was getting paid thousands of taxpayer
dollar
s
for spying on y-o-u and me.

You'll still get all those posts and many others
that I've already written, perhaps even as soon
as Sunday evening, but I wanted to tell you
why you aren't seeing them now.

Late Wednesday afternoon I received a very
disturbing phone call from a trusted friend that
made me decide to put those posts on hold for
a bit.

She wanted my assistance in helping out someone
she knew who needed some positive words and
clear-headed thinking to figure out what their
next step should be.

It turns out that the classmate of one of her
Middle School kids had been the victim of a
beating by another kid at their Broward school
a few months ago, apparently, so I'm led to
believe, in full view of some of the school officials
and administrators.

After I agreed to meet at a favorite hangout of
ours, my friend, her own kid and the victim of
this unprovoked attack, a very careful examination
of the germane facts left little doubt in my mind
that in the Broward town where this attack took
place -NOT Hallandale Beach- there seems
to have been what I can only describe as a
semi-orchestrated effort on the part of the school
and the nearby Police Dept. to make this entire
case disappear, due largely to reasons of sheer
cronyism and a huge fear of public embarrassment
and backlash.

And, shocker of shockers, you won't be surprised
to hear that the alleged perpetrator is a serial
troublemaker, who has often been the precipitating
agent in many previous fights and beatings,
all to very little practical effect as far as actual
meaningful punishment goes.

Oh, and did I mention yet that both the victim
as well as the perpetrator were young teenage
girls?

Once the legal system actually got involved,
things got no better, as the "alleged perp"
seems to have been cut all sorts of breaks,
down to that town's cops actually delivering
a later TRO to the wrong house!

The more I heard from this distraught girl
Wednesday night about the way the Broward
County School system and legal system had
continually let her down, over-and-over,
the angrier I got.

That was only made worse with everything
that has gone on of late with violence in and
around various Broward schools, and I had
to keep reminding myself to stay focused,
even as James Notter & Company tried
to play nice with the media by downsizing
the significance of the school violence here,
including up in Deerfield Beach where the
most recent highly publicized case took place.

Broward Sheriff Admits Error in Report About Deerfield School Beating; Deputy Was Not Quickly at Scene -
http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/juice/2010/03/bso_response_josie_ratley_wayne_treacy.php

I'm going to be digging for a lot more information
on this and see what I can ferret out, even calling
in some IOUs with some local investigative
reporters who have more resources than I do.

IF
everything has actually played-out as I
suspect it has been, I'm going to do everything
I can to make sure that some heads roll in a
very public way.

That may even include some really insensitive
behavior on the part of a current sitting judge,
whose conduct was MUCH LESS than what
the situation required and what the public
has a reasonable right to expect.

The judge seems to have bent over backwards
to help the perp, even while leaving the actual
victim in this case to feel further beleaguered
and isolated.
And fearful.

If that proves to be the case, the sort of close
scrutiny that the unethical and downright
creepy crew of miscreants at Hallandale Beach
City Hall and environs have received here
on this blog for years, as a direct result of
their own longstanding unprofessional conduct
and illegal actions, will seem like child's play
when I'm finished.
I kid you not.

So that's the particular situation that I've been
busy researching
and writing about the past
few days that has kept my mind elsewhere.


Creepy
Alexander Lewy and the HB City
Hall-paid
spy will just have to wait a few more
hours or days
to see the light of day.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Bad news for Diana Wasserman-Rubin, no fan of Quality-of-Life in Hallandale Beach & Hollywood: Angelo Castillo may oppose her and he will win

The Broward Beat column by Buddy Nevins that I link
to below
just got posted this morning, which explains why
there is only one
reader comment there thus far.

Yesterday DWR voted against the thousands of people in
the
Hallandale Beach neighborhood -and nearby Hollywood
residents
- that are quite literally under-the-gun from the
unpopular and
incompatible Diplomat LAC proposal,
as she has cast her lot with
HB City Comm. Anthony A. Sanders
instead of the larger number
of residents in this area whose
family's Quality-of-Life would be
negatively affected by
the multiple condo towers and the increased
traffic that
come with them.


She actually told three HB residents who met with her
at her office
on Monday afternoon that she personally
avoids coming into that part of HB -i.e east of U.S-1-
because of the traffic nightmare,
where we all know
from experience that we
NEVER see HB Police
actually on duty to prevent the gridlock that Aventura
prevents by
ACTUALLY having a visible presence
on Biscayne Blvd. and giving
real tickets to scofflaws
'blocking the box."


(Just like you, if I had a dollar for every time
I saw an emergency vehicle with a siren wailing

try to head west on Hallandale Beach Blvd.
towards Aventura Hospital while it's
bumper-to-bumper
from Three Islands to U.S-1,
I'd be sporting
a new car.
So where are those HB cops, anyway?)


But if a vote for the
Diplomat helps DWR with keeping
Sanders'
Pied Piper support in NW, i.e the promise of
future jobs for NW
residents, she was only too happy
to throw you and your family's
neighborhood and Q-O-L
overboard, and tell you that's just tough.


That's her choice, of course, and she's welcome to it,
but if she
thinks that Anthony Sanders and his
consistently anti-democratic, anti-transparency
voting record, truly abysmal lack of preparation
for city meetings
-not even bothering to show-up
for the city's final vote on their big Transportation
Master Plan meeting last year
- over-budget and
YEARS overdue, won't be an absolute
albatross
around
HER neck, she's very much mistaken.

But then isn't this vote of her's only a self-evident sign
of how truly
desperate she is that she's stuck with the
equally dis-connected
Sanders, who all this time later,
STILL can't tell you to your face what the official
city plan is for the property the city bought from him

and his wife for more than it was appraised at,
with your
tax dollars?

Rushed with urgency to buy this one piece of property
as if there
were oil deposits underneath and eager
oil execs were jetting in from
Houston to sign a deal.
You know, Texas Tea?


A nondescript property which you own that the city
is now renting out
for a grand total of -yes- $10 a month.
(And guess who had that deal?)


So what's the long term plan, exactly?

Where's the written strategy?
There isn't one.


Sanders
can't tell you any more than Joy Cooper,
Mike Good or Richard Canonne can explain what
the grand plan for the
sixty-plus properties that the
city
ALREADY owns, that has no apparent rhyme
or reason to it.


And by city, I mean that
YOUR tax dollars bought
and own.


Without
an actual written plan that everyone in this
city knows about
and can read, there is no guideline
or deadline -
and ZERO scrutiny and accountability
for Hallandale Beach taxpayers
.

That's why it's the way it is -
HB City Hall wants it
that way.
It's the same reason that HB citizens only
saw the
Diplomat's submitted application and docs
to the city placed on the city's website just
28 hours
before the first vote -the P&Z- with Mayor Cooper
and
Commissioners Julian, Ross and Sanders
consistently refusing,
meeting after meeting, to support
Comm. Keith London's common sense motion to place
them on the website far enough before the vote would

take place, so that everyone could read them and come
to understand
what they were proposing and draw
their own conclusions.


That collective refusal to allow you, the citizen taxpayers
of this city,
to actually know what was being proposed,
was no accident.

It was
entirely intentional, which is why I made a point
of mentioning
it yesterday when I spoke before the
Broward County Commission,
to explain, in part, why
the
majority of well-informed citizens here so
adamantly oppose
the Diplomat's over-the-top plans
for numerous
condo towers in a residential neighborhood.

The self-evident nature of the city's unfairness to us,
and their
completely unprofessional and unethical conduct
-
AGAIN!- as if HB City Hall was a silent partner in the
enterprise, trying to
FIX things so we'd have little chance
to respond in a reasonable fashion,
was galling, and the
local news media's completely ignoring that fact
only
made it worse.


That's the price many of us currently pay for living in
a city with a
corrupt City Hall at the same time we
have a sleepwalking local news
media.

IF
he chooses to run, I'll be enthusiastically supporting
Angelo Castillo for the good of both Broward County's
future as well as this city's,
which desperately needs all
the help and good, positive ideas it
can get.

Smart, savvy and dynamic common sense help that,
in my opinion,
it ISN'T currently getting and won't
receive in the future from
disconnected and uninformed
Diana Wasserman-Rubin.

It's taking longer than I expected to go thru the hours
of photos and
video I shot at yesterday's Broward
County Commission meeting,
but I will definitely have
some of the material up by late tonight.


----------
Broward Beat
http://www.browardbeat.com/opponent-closing-in-on-wasserman-rubin/
Opponent Closing In On Wasserman-Rubin

By Buddy Nevins
March 24, 2010


South Florida Sun-Sentinel
www.sun-sentinel.com/news/palm-beach/fl-wasserman-swamp-school-20100128,0,3130912.story
Wasserman-Rubin's husband played key role in controversial school land deal
By Scott Wyman, Sun Sentinel
January 28, 2010


The pull quote from the article below:
"I seldom get a call from the city," Wasserman-Rubin told those gathered at the
barbershop at 708 Foster Rd.

Just saying...

South Florida Times
July 2007; updated March 17, 2008
Residents outraged over neighborhood neglect

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Plucky underdog HB activists live to fight another day as Broward County Commission votes 4-4 on Diplomat LAC

Hallandale Beach Chicken of the Sea coming home to roost?
No, plucky Hallandale Beach residents know better than
to crow yet and prematurely count their chickens!

Fowl weather at Hallandale Beach may be very bad news
for Hallandale Beach City Hall and their lapdog acolytes.
February 14, 2008 photo by
South Beach Hoosier.

I'm very, very pleased to say tonight that on Wednesday,
I will be posting my pithy comments
and analysis,
along with some photos and video,
of today's important
Broward County Commission
meeting on the Diplomat
LAC
proposal, which resulted in a series of 4-4 votes
on various motions,
meaning that under the County's
rules, the next
step will be yet another meeting before
the
County Commission, on April 13th.

Three more weeks to try to peel away one of the
other
county commissioners.

Political drama!

Stacey Ritter
and Ilene Lieberman are lost causes
in more ways than one as I've mentioned
here previously,
and didn't even need to be in the
room for those of us
opposed to the Diplomat's
condo towers to know
they'd already made up
their mind, as I predicted here
-and I was right.


They weren't there, but you could feel the aloofness
and condescension over the phone line.

The over-confident
Diplomat officials, unctuous
union lackeys and the high-priced lawyers,
lobbyists
and consultants they've been paying for
months left
the Broward Commission Chambers
in shock!


You see, they were counting their chickens
BEFORE
they were cooked!

Monday, March 22, 2010

South Florida news media's silence in asking Steve Geller hard questions has never been more noticeable than now

What follows is an email I sent out this afternoon
to numerous South Florida print/TV reporters
and columnists, raising questions that you may
well have been asking yourself.

The part about Steve Geller could've been
asked last month or last year.
Oh, that's right, I did.
Reporters and columnists, not so much.
-------------

Monday March 22nd, 2010

Noon

Many of you have a reputation for being more

than willing to indulge former State Senator
Steve Geller's ego, and to contact him for
almost any reason under the sun if you think
he'll say something pithy that'll make your
audience chortle, even if he really doesn't
know any more about the subject than many
other people you could ask.

So that said, is there a reason that you and

the rest of the South Florida news media
haven't asked Steve Geller to publicly
declare his own sympathies, one way or
the other, in the fight by Hallandale Beach
citizens -and their allies in Hollywood-
against the incompatible Diplomat LAC
plan scheduled to be voted upon Tuesday

afternoon by the Broward County Commission?

Or to ever mention what other local Broward
pols are saying or doing in relation to the
prospect of four or five 25-story-plus condo
towers being dropped on a residential
neighborhood, largely because the Union
that owns the Diplomat Country Club,
along with their partner Starwood, has done
such a dreadful job of improving and marketing
the expensive golf course, that nobody wants
to play there.

(If they get the approval they seek from the
Broward County Commission, it's clear that
the Plumbers & Pipe Fitters Union will
try to sell it toute-de-suite.)

For instance, sounding-out local pols like
Eleanor Sobel, Joe Gibbons, Jennifer
& Ken Gottlieb,
Elaine Schwartz or
Ann Murray or...

In most parts of the country, they'd be part
of the equation, and maybe even vocal leaders
in the fight.
But here, they just sit on the sidelines, as if
local voters in HB and Hollywood don't notice
their MIA status, and won't take it into account
negatively come Election Day.

(They're in for a surprise, as we WILL
take it into account and ask questions
about
their silence.)

No, instead, we are met with completely
incurious reporters who don't seem to want
to ask reasonable questions that Southeast
Broward residents want answers to.


It's the biggest issue in this city -
besides
reforming a very corrupt HB City Hall
-
and yet you all have, individually and
collectively,
given Steve Geller a free ride
for months.


You've been completely averse to asking basic

questions of someone who could, theoretically,
actually represent most of this city and
Hollywood
if he were to actually somehow defeat
Sue Gunzburger
, though I think it's unlikely.

Why?

Why this great reluctance to ask
Steve Geller
tough questions?

Is it the possibility of losing access to
a quotable source?


Frankly, that's what most people I know who

are interested in public policy in South Florida
believe.
You know, the ones interested enough to actually

show-up and participate and be quoted by you
or
featured in interviews you conduct?

That's also the belief of many Florida reporters
from
outside of South Florida.
If you didn't already know, many of them think

Geller plays the South Florida media like
a violin,
some more easily than others
-
from practice!

And why the great reluctance to ask Geller
to state the specific date by which he will
actually be living in the Commission
District he's running
for, while he continues
to live outside of it up in Cooper City?

Geller
has been a carpetbagger this entire
campaign, an adjective that you all seem
very reluctant to use for reasons that don't
necessarily speak well for your profession's
integrity.
It's all just so very, very curious.

And what is Broward Commissioner
Diana
Wasserman-Rubin
going to do on the
Diplomat LAC, since Hallandale Beach is part
of her District, even if the project
itself is not?

Will she continue to give the concerned
neighborhood the complete runaround?


DWR had no problem at all in meeting Hallandale
Beach Commissioner Anthony A, Sanders
in person on March 8th at the
Hepburn Center
in HB to hear the typically one-sided rhetoric
sans facts that he specializes in.

But when the actual neighborhood directly
affected
by the over-the-top project wanted
to show her
around and give her some first-hand
perspective
and context to better understand
their plight
-
and more easily imagine a 25-30-story
condo suddenly going up 100 feet from
their kitchen window, and plunging them
into near permanent shade
- after initially
agreeing to come,
DWR decided the following
day, last Friday,
that she didn't want to meet
with them on-site.

Which defeats the purpose of a walking
tour,
no?

Instead, she asked them to come to her

West Park office today at 4 p.m., at the
Family Success Center, 4733 SW 18th Street,
one block south of Pembroke Rd.


Those of you who want to break away from
the media herd may want to consider
swinging-by there and see how it's goes,
but at this point, given all her other myriad

problems, DWR seems to just be digging
herself into a deeper hole with HB citizens,
who already thought she was distant and
far-removed from their day-to-day concerns,
which will only be magnified if she votes
for
the Diplomat on Tuesday.

After failing to meet residents where
the project is slated to be built.


For the record, besides
Sue Gunzburger,
who has been to numerous meetings in both
HB and Hollywood on this issue that I've
attended, NONE of the other Broward
County
Commissioners have bothered
to come to
the affected area to see what's
in store for
these beleaguered residents.

Perhaps the attached Massing Study done
by the Diplomat's consultants will give
you a sense of their future if the Diplomat
gets their way.

Seeing is believing, which perhaps best explains
why
DWR chooses not to visit the scene.

She knows that she can't look people in the eye
and say that she
likes what the Diplomat
proposes to do to their
home, so she forces a
handful of them to have to come
to HER office,
where she has home-court
advantage, and can
conclude the meeting whenever she wants.


If I were a betting man, as of this afternoon,
I'd say that
Diana Wasserman-Rubin will
vote for the
Diplomat's project, along with
both Stacey Ritter and Elaine Lieberman,
the latter two forever the
developer's friend
and among the biggest individual drags on
Broward getting into the 21st Century thru
their smirky, ham-handed ethical problems.


Me, I'm just wondering when the news media

down here will once again have both some bark
and some bite.

-----

Those of you who want to see the Massing Study
I referred to above for yourselves should drop me
an email and I'll send it to you.
Write me at hallandalebeachblog(-at-)gmail.com
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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.

Sweden

Outside the Swedish Embassy, Georgetown Harbour, Washington, D.C., USA #Stockholm ❤

First official look at our Lara Croft #tombraider #tombraidermovie

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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.
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