Hallandale Beach Blog -A common-sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, government, public policy, sports scene and pop culture of Europe, the U.S. & South Florida, in particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach & Hollywood.
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 South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Friday, February 15, 2013

re Marco Rubio: Oh dear! Another predictable Beth Reinhard paint-by-numbers piece on Rubio in The National Journal, full of the usual resume/personality recitals. I'll bet I can guess what Reinhard will say about him before reading it. Yes, and so can you! That's the whole problem -Reinhard writes about Rubio by rote; Where's the plan for positive changes at McClatchy's Miami Herald -still missing!

U.S. Senate longshot candidate Marco Rubio in Hallandale Beach, FL at Southeast Broward Republican Club. June 23, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

The National Journal
POLITICS
Can Marco Rubio Live Up to the Hype?
He's the GOP's Barack Obama, a fresh-faced politician with an immigrant name, a playlist full of rap, and a collection of fawning press clips. The challenge: He's selling the same old party message.
By Beth Reinhard
Updated: February 14, 2013 | 8:50 p.m. 
February 14, 2013 | 8:20 p.m.
The freshman senator from Florida had joined four veteran colleagues to unveil a proposal for the first major overhaul of immigration law in a quarter-century. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., introduced “my friend, Senator [Marco] Rubio, who obviously is a new but incredibly important voice in this whole issue of immigration reform.”
Two weeks earlier, Rubio had laid out a similar set of principles in an exclusive interview with The Wall Street Journal under the headline, “Marco Rubio: Riding to the Immigration Rescue.” The article came as a surprise to McCain and other members of the bipartisan group of senators who had been sketching out an immigration plan with and without Rubio for weeks. The blueprint was inspired by legislation that McCain first spearheaded in 2005.
The dig was subtle, but Rubio didn’t let it go.

Oh dear! Another predictable Beth Reinhard paint-by-numbers piece on Marco Rubio in The National Journal, full of the usual resume/personality recitals.
Bet I can guess what Beth Reinhard will say about Marco Rubio
Yes, and so can you! 

That's the problem -Reinhard writes about Rubio by rote.
Just like her last piece on him.

Even the new anecdotes she drops throughout the column sound just like the old ones she used, since they are almost always cobbled together to create the same old product: Marco the Magnificent.

It would be far better if she spoke to veteran analysts like Charlie Cook, also of the National Journal and someone whose every word I read religiously for meaning and portent, as mentioned many times here in the past, which is why I've linked to so many of his columns here over the years.

Specifically, speak to Cook about the dangers of over-exposure, which he is getting closer to everyday, and the graveyard of presidential candidates that peaked early and never made it to Election Day because they prematurely annoyed or bored America silly, or flat out didn't have the sort of practical experience needed or the ability to articulate a cogent, distinct message that resonated with the public and which could grow even larger with hard work.
Bill Bradley for instance.

Even though I was an early and very confident Senate supporter of Rubio's in 2009, when the entire Florida GOP and business establishment, along with Florida's sycophantic Mainstream Media, plus the East Coast drive-by MSM, practically handed the 2010 Republican Senate nomination to then-Governor Charlie Crist, in my opinion, Rubio needs to actually accomplish a lot more of substance sooner -and be seen LESS in a pop-culture prism- otherwise, everyone in America may be bored silly by the sight of him within two years as the new car smell wears off, just as he's campaigning for House and Senate candidates throughout the country, and actually getting most of the questions, not the candidates he's with.

Yes, just like a once interesting new TV commercial that you have now grown to cringe at within a milli-second of seeing on TV and reach for the remote.

And if and when that happens, the only thing that will be written about him will be the hit pieces by the usual suspects, especially among liberal reporters and columnists in the West, who have no secret of the fact that they resent the collective power of Cubans in the political process compared to Mexicans, who vastly outnumber them.

And Univision, of course, in their creepy stalker-like relationship with Rubio, where they are always looking to see if he's spending too much time with someone else.
Y
es, Univision, the Spanish-language channel that the Miami Herald is always kissing the butt of and overplaying the significance of, but who will, not so curiously, not mention in print that they didn't air President Obama's State of the the Union address, which is why they won Tuesday night in the TV ratings.

Nope, no mention, as you can see for yourself. 

I thought they were the new "It"?
Qué pasa, Herald?

Yes, Univision, the politically-biased TV network that makes it very clear in their so-called news coverage that the only reasonable side of the immigration debate is pro-amnesty, otherwise, you are a racist. 

Oh yeah -and the supposed news network whose employees loves to take public whacks at 
Rubio.

That is, if they, too, aren't already bored silly by Rubio and tired of pointing-out the same deficiencies they saw/see in him, over-and-over.

On the other hand, it's good to remember that Rubio eventually got so bored/irritated with Reinhard asking him the same ol' leading questions over-and-over during his long Senate campaign, that as I wrote here at the time, towards the end, he eventually started freezing her out because he simply couldn't take the routine anymore

You might recall that was back when the Herald's then-Ombudsman took Beth Reinhard (and the Herald) to task in his once-in-a-while Sunday column for having one person perform both reporter and columnist duties, saying that it was a conflict of interest.

The Ombudsman was right, of course, and Reinhard proved why that was true by being whiny publicly in her columns about being frozen out by Rubio, which not only made her less attractive to Rubio as a person to speak with, but for voters and newspaper readers, made her 'articles' about him not at all reliable, since you already knew that she was mad at him enough to say so publicly.
But I guess I'm the only one who remembers that, huh?

Alas, the Herald's then-Ombudsman left in April of 2011 and has never been replaced, with rather predictable results from my perspective: more bias than ever in articles as well as more missing facts and context.

As many of you regular readers know, I've directly asked the Herald's top management why there's been no replacement and no mention made in the paper of what their plan is, if any, for an eventual replacement.
And, what their plan for improvement in print and online was to keep the faith of readers.
That's been met with stony silence. 
Followed by more silence.

A smart and fair-minded person representing the interests of Herald readers and ethics is not in the cards there.

Folks, it's time to face the fact that publisher David Landsberg has no actual plan for the Herald's future that positive for news consumers, because if he did, he'd have already made them public months before they went to a pay wall, and only added the pay wall AFTER getting rid of the problem step-children, adding new and curious columnists and reporters who don't take things for granted -one of the worst daily offenses there!-  and completely re-do the website from top-to-bottom, so the same stories don't appear in three separate places there, as happens now, which is acutely embarrassing for everyone, most of all, them.

That's why in my opinion, with the same people in charge, the Herald's problems are only going to get worse over time.

But if someone with some smarts and money bought the Sun-Sentinel, fired all the dead wood and made it more like some of the Swedish newspapers that I've become increasingly  used to, and read daily while I was in Stockholm last month, newspapers which are very popular, well then, you could well see will see a very interesting dynamic take place here

in South Florida.
But not right now.

Now, each newspaper and its management seem locked in a battle of lethargy to do the least amount of original enterprise reporting possible.
  
------
TheWrap
Ratings: Univision Wins Night By Skipping State of the Union
By Tim Kenneally
Published: February 13, 2013 @ 10:03 am

November 1, 2010
Hallandale Beach Blog endorses Beth Reinhard & Charlie Crist's departure - asks they get escort to airport so they don't miss their flights out of FL

September 3, 2010

Addition by subtraction: Beth Reinhard leaving Miami Herald, heading to D.C. and The National Journal. Herald readers finally win one!


-----
Univision staffer attacks Sen. Marco Rubio on Facebook

No doubt after the Castro Brothers finally go adios for good, many of the Univision employees will try to move to Cuba and try to suddenly reinvent themselves as real journalists, after years of being celebrity hand-holdres, political suck-ups and amateur political science professors based in LA, NYC and Miami, forever intent on lecturing us on how important Latin America is, despite the fact that we mostly don't care about it for perfectly valid reasons, no matter how much they insist it's important.



But it's not, even with changing demographics and population changes, Americans aren't going to suddenly care about Honduras or Uruguay or Brazil if they never did before, and they can't let on that the whole thing has been a journalistic con for years to fleece advertising dollars.

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Hallandale Beach Blog

Hallandale Beach Blog
Hallandale Beach Blog/South Beach Hoosier's crimson-colored Indiana University cap. If you see someone at a South Florida govt. meeting or public policy discussion wearing this IU cap, scribbling notes furiously -and shaking his head in disbelief- don't be afraid to come over and say hello or pitch prospective story ideas. Photo by South Beach Hoosier. Move your mouse over the cap and be sent to the IU Athletic Dept.'s YouTube Channel.

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.
____________________________________________
Hallandale Beach Blog is where I try to inject or superimpose a degree of accountability, transparency and insight onto Florida and local Broward County government and public policy issues, which I feel is sorely lacking in local media now. On this blog, locally, I concentrate my energy, enthusiasm, anger and laser-like attention on the coastal cities of Hallandale Beach and Hollywood.
If you lived in this part of South Florida, you'd ALREADY be stuck in stultifying traffic, paying higher-than-necessary taxes and continually musing about the chronic lack of accountability among not only elected govt. officials, but also of city, county and state employees as well. Collectively, with a few rare exceptions, they couldn't be farther from the sort of strong results-oriented, eager work-ethic mentality that local residents deserve and expect.
This is particularly true in the town I live in, the City of Hallandale Beach, just north of Aventura and south of Hollywood. There, the "Perfect Storm" of years of apathy, incompetency and cronyism are all too readily apparent.
Sadly for its residents, HB is where even easily-solved, quality-of-life problems are left to fester for YEARS on end, because of myopia, lack of common sense and ineffective supervisory management. It's a city with lots of potential because of its terrific location, yet its citizens have become numb to its outrages and screw-ups after years of the worst kind of mismanagement and lack of foresight. On a daily basis, they wake up and see the same old problems that have never being adequately resolved by the city in a logical and responsible fashion, merely kicked -once again- further down the road.
I used to ask myself, not always rhetorically, "Where are all the enterprising young reporters who want to show that through their own hard work and enterprise, what REAL investigative reporting can produce?" Hearing no response, I decided to start a blog that could do some of these things, taking the p.o.v. of a reasonable but skeptical person seeing the situation for the first time, and wanting questions answered in a honest and logical way that citizens have the right to expect.

Hallandale Beach Blog intends to be a catalyst for positive change.
If there's one constant gripe in South Florida, regardless of your age, race, nationality or political persuasion, it's about the fundamental lack of PUBLIC ACCOUNTABILITY here among Florida's state, regional and local govt./agency officials. Hallandale Beach Blog aims to be a small step towards regaining some of that needed accountability, whether it's thru simple public scrutiny, or requires a degree of follow-up investigation and public exposure of incompetency, cronyism or simple negligence -South Florida's usual governing style.
"And David put his hand in the bag and took out a stone and slung it. And it struck the Philistine on the head and he fell to the ground. Amen."- Preacher Purl encouraging the underdog Hickory High basketball team before the state title game against heavily-favored South Bend Central in 1986's Hoosiers
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0091217/
Audio of pregame speech:
_____________________________________________

Paradise Lost? South Florida

Paradise Lost? South Florida
TIME magazine of November 23, 1981: Paradise Lost? South Florida . Click photo to see original article.

Ordinary people can make a difference in fight against corruption in Broward County

The next time you hear someone in Broward County, like one of the usual "experts" or pundits or maybe a self-interested lobbyist like Joy Cooper's supercilious pal Judy Stern repeat the Conventional Wisdom that nobody really cares about ethical behavior, transparency and accountability in Broward cities, except a handful of people, just keep this in mind.
As of March 6, 2014 at 12:30 p.m., in the 84 weeks since I first wrote my October 15th 2012 post titled, "Ethics? Not for us! Follow-up to my post re Hallandale Beach's unethical "business as usual" attitude, with "special rules for special people" if they are named Joy Cooper, Bill Julian and Anthony A. Sanders; What ethics? What rules? @MayorCooper, @SandersHB" it's been viewed 183,914 times. That's MORE than TWO THOUSAND page views a week! Imagine that!
That total doesn't even include the number of people who saw it the day it was first posted, when it was the default post of the blog. That's a lot of people who now know a lot more facts about the truth regarding the corruption and incompetency that have been commonplace in Hallandale Beach all these years while Broward State's Attorney Mike Satz and his staff did NOTHING. Just saying...
The South Florida I Grew Up In
Excerpted from Joan Didion's Miami, 1987, Simon & Schuster:
In the continuing opera still called, even by Cubans who have now lived the largest part of their lives in this country, el exilo, the exile, meetings at private homes in Miami Beach are seen to have consequences. The actions of individuals are seen to affect events directly. Revolutions and counter-revolutions are framed in the private sector, and the state security apparatus exists exclusively to be enlisted by one or another private player. That this particular political style, indigenous to the Caribbean and to Central America, has now been naturalized in the United States is one reason why, on the flat coastal swamps of South Florida, where the palmettos once blew over the detritus of a dozen failed booms and the hotels were boarded up six months a year, there has evolved since the early New Year's morning in 1959 when Fulgencio Batista flew for the last time out of Havana a settlement of considerable interest, not exactly an American city as American cities have until recently been understood but a tropical capital: long on rumor, short on memory, overbuilt on the chimera of runaway money and referring not to New York or Boston or Los Angeles or Atlanta but to Caracas and Mexico, to Havana and to Bogota and to Paris and Madrid. Of American cities Miami has since 1959 connected only to Washington, which is the peculiarity of both places, and increasingly the warp...

"The general wildness, the eternal labyrinths of waters and marshes, interlocked and apparently neverending; the whole surrounded by interminable swamps... Here I am then in the Floridas, thought I," John James Audobon wrote to the editor of The Monthly American Journal of Geology and Natural Science during the course of an 1831 foray in the territory then still called the Floridas. The place came first, and to touch down there is to begin to understand why at least six administrations now have found South Florida so fecund a colony. I never passed through security for a flight to Miami without experiencing a certain weightlessness, the heightened wariness of having left the developed world for a more fluid atmosphere, one in which the native distrust of extreme possibilities that tended to ground the temperate United States in an obeisance to democratic institutions seemed rooted, if at all, only shallowly. At the gate for such flights the preferred language was already Spanish. Delays were explained by weather in Panama. The very names of the scheduled destinations suggested a world in which many evangelical inclinations had historically been accommodated, many yearnings toward empire indulged...

In this mood Miami seemed not a city at all but a tale, a romance of the tropics, a kind of waking dream in which any possibility could and would be accommodated...

Nice from a distance, not so nice once you're there and see the years of City Hall's neglect

Nice from a distance, not so nice once you're there and see the years of City Hall's neglect
The public beach that is "North Beach" in Hallandale Beach, FL. June 19, 2012 photo by South Beach Hoosier.© 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

So this is where our tax dollars go to die?

"So this is where our tax dollars go to die? My friend and fellow civic activist Csaba Kulin, perhaps wondering when we're FINALLY going to get the clean and inviting public beach that Hallandale Beach residents believe we're entitled to but have never received under Mayor Cooper and her Rubber Stamp Crew.
Instead, we get rusty pipes in the middle of the beach and garbage cans on the beach -without lids- at the windiest place in the entire city. And a public building across the street from the beach that the public can't use for free but which city employees can -for their holiday parties." Click photo to see many more photos of the site and the original post, or http://hallandalebeachblog.blogspot.com/2012/06/latest-info-photos-re-related-groups.html; 2012 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Just as true now as it was when it was written in June 2012!

The View from the Hallandale Beach/Hollywood city line

The View from the Hallandale Beach/Hollywood city line
Looking south towards The Beach Club and the Hallandale Beach Water Tower on A1A from the beach, near the Hollywood cityline, May 2, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

A fish rots from the head down, and so does local government in Hallandale Beach, FL

A fish rots from the head down, and so does local government in Hallandale Beach, FL
City of Hallandale Beach Municipal Complex, 400 S. Federal Highway. The City of Hallandale Beach Municipal Complex: If it's true that a fish rots from the head down, so it does in local government in Broward County, FL. This monument sign on the west side of the intersection of U.S.-1 and S.E. 5th Street, across from Gulfstream Park Race Track & Casino and the Village at Gulfstream Park retail complex, alerts you to your proximity to HB City Hall and the HB Police Department HQ. It's a place and culture whose very own words and actions have made clear to taxpayers of this city -regardless of age, race or income- that it holds itself apart from and above from the very citizens it's supposed to serve, often acting like they don't have to follow the same laws that govern everyone else in the state of Florida and the U.S., whether of logic, reason or contracts. (More to the point of this blog, the Florida Statutes on Sunshine Laws and Public Records.) City employees in Hallandale Beach routinely refuse to answer perfectly reasonable questions posed to them by taxpayers, and as I have found out myself and witnessed, are not above berating you for even having the nerve to ask! As it happens, it's also not a very safe area, despite who operates here, and over the past nine years, the public parking lots have often been pitch-black for 6-9 months at a time, including in front of the HB Police Dept. HQ. Then-Police Chief Thomas Magill even shrugged his shoulders at City Comm. meetings when told about this a few times. As if they couldn't make a worse first impression, at one point, even the spotlights shining on this sign didn't work at night for over FOUR YEARS, either. October 13, 2012 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Looking east on State Road 858/Hallandale Beach Blvd.

Looking east  on State Road 858/Hallandale Beach Blvd.
Looking east on State Road 858/Hallandale Beach Blvd., over the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway bridge, toward the iconic Hallandale Beach Water Tower and the three condo towers comprising The Beach Club. September 8, 2008 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Hallandale Beach Water Tower on A1A/South Ocean Drive

Hallandale Beach Water Tower on A1A/South Ocean Drive
Hallandale Beach Water Tower on A1A/South Ocean Drive. Located below the Hallandale Beach Water Tower on A1A/South Ocean Drive, on the south side (right) is the "Community Center" that HB City Hall, thru their gross incompetency, has made impossible for HB citizen taxpayers to use now for 41 MONTHS as of January 2011. (And where's the American flag on the Fourth of July weekend? Missing in action as it had been for months!) July 3, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Looking towards southern Hollywood Beach

Looking towards southern Hollywood Beach
Trump Hollywood, Diplomat Residences, Westin Diplomat, Crowne Resort. Looking NE towards Hollywood on State Road A1A from the 2500 block of East Hallandale Beach Blvd./State Road 858 just before crossing the Intracoastal Bridge: (l-r) Trump Hollywood, Diplomat Residences, the Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa, the Crowne Plaza Hollywood Beach. March 25, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

The Related Group's The Beach Club, consisting of three condo towers

The Related Group's The Beach Club, consisting of three condo towers
The Beach Club. Looking SE at The Beach Club from the Hollywood side of State Road A1A. May 12, 2008 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

City of Hollywood City Hall, 2600 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, FL

City of Hollywood City Hall, 2600 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, FL
City of Hollywood City Hall. An early morning shot of the east side of Hollywood City Hall the morning of the Johnson Street Redevelopment RFP Evaluation Committee meeting, where presentations were heard; October 14, 2009 photo by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. For more info on what's going on with this important project, see http://www.hollywoodfl.org/html/JohnsonStBeachRFP.htm

Corruption Isn't Unique to South Florida, It's the Level of the Stupidity That Is

Corruption Isn't Unique to South Florida, It's the Level of the Stupidity That Is
"[Chicago Mayor] William Hale Thompson was defeated Tuesday after a campaign which he alone made disgraceful. The election was an ejection, a dirty job, but Chicago has washed itself and put on clean clothes. Thompson recognized the [Chicago] Tribune as his chief enemy. The Tribune was glad to earn that opinion. It certainly tried to do so. It has taken the fight to him on every occasion during the long and depraved course of his administration. It is unpleasant business to eject a skunk, but someone has to do it. For Chicago, Thompson has meant filth, corruption, obscenity, idiocy and bankruptcy. He has given the city an international reputation for moronic buffoonery, barbaric crime, triumphant hoodlumism, unchecked graft and a dejected citizenship. He nearly ruined the property and completely destroyed the pride of the city. He made Chicago a byword for the collapse of American civilization. In his attempt to continue this he excelled himself as a liar and defamer of character. He’s out. He is not only out, but dishonored. He is deserted by his friends. He is permanently marked by the evidences of his character and conduct. His health is impaired by his ways of life and he leaves office and goes from the city the most discredited man who ever held place in it."

-Excerpts from April 1931 Chicago Tribune editorial following Republican "Big Bill" Thompson's loss to his Democratic rival Anton Cermak. A friend of organized crime during the Al Capone era, Thompson was the last Republican elected mayor of Chicago. But less than two years later, Mayor Cermak was shot while shaking hands with President-elect Franklin D. Roosevelt at Miami's Bayfront Park. He died from gunshot wounds to his lungs three weeks later.

See
http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/3686.html

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

Sebastian the Ibis, the U-M mascot

Sebastian the Ibis, the U-M mascot
Like longtime U-M fans everywhere, including me, Sebastian the Ibis, the U-M mascot, hasn't had very much to cheer about lately, given the general state of mediocrity and underwhelming performances coming from the Hurricanes. Isn't it about time for fans to finally see some tangible signs that the new AD is moving things in the right direction? Where are the signs? I'm NOT seeing them. The woeful U-M Women's program is largely composed of teams that are NOT even close to being competitive for NCAA titles like their ACC competition, and they don't even field Women's Lacrosse or Field Hockey teams. It's embarrassing! Click on Sebastian for retrospective photo gallery of The Orange Bowl

Championship banners

The NCAA Championship Banners

The NCAA Championship Banners
Assembly Hall, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana. I was there in 1981 for NCAA Title #4 vs. North Carolina. Click on photo to go to the IU Basketball homepage.
Perhaps you'll enjoy this view more!

We Are IU (Official Version) 2013

Let's end the 27-year NCAA title drought!

Let's end the 27-year NCAA title drought!
IU All-American and U.S. Olympian Steve Alford on the cover of the 1987 Indiana University basketball media guide, months after IU won the NCAA basketball title.

Here's the first banner of the Crean Era

Our five NCAA Basketball Championship banners are on the north side of the court; I was there for 1981's.

Miami Dolphins QB capable of winning 2 playoff games in a row is NOT on roster now