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Every vote counts

A political party urges Miami voters to use absentee ballots because electronic voting has no paper trail and cannot "verify your vote." The Democrats? Nope -- the Florida GOP.
posted by tregoweth on Jul 29, 2004 - 13 comments

paper trail NOW paper trail NOW paper trail NOW

Florida county loses 2002 E-voting records in computer crash Ooooops. Do your Congresspeople and Senators support verified voting ? - Check the VerifiedVoting.org database (verifiedvoting.org previously mentioned here) to see if your political reps support H.R.2239 and S.1980, the tandem bills before the U.S. House and Senate which would mandate paper-trail voting. "Electronic miscounts of votes are a fact, not a theory...Technologists warn that electronic voting machines are flawed. They say we should "trust but verify." " Others disagree....with Democracy.
posted by troutfishing on Jul 28, 2004 - 26 comments

Democracy...ummm - sometime ?

"No voting rights for YOU......boy!"- Florida's illegal purges of voter rolls to continue for 3rd national election? Election head resigns. While Florida refuses to release the "purge lists" to CNN, "The head of Florida's elections division resigned Monday amid reports he was feeling political heat over a push to purge thousands of suspected felons from the state's voter rolls." (Tallahassee Sun-Sentinel) " there has been little action (and worse, really) on Florida's agreement to reinstate illegally purged voters to Florida voting rolls that resulted from an NAACP lawsuit over the 2000 election ["Many voters said their votes didn't count or they were turned away from polls due to mistakes on voter lists, busy telephone lines at election headquarters, punch-card voting machine foul-ups and other problems...Statewide, the largest numbers of voting problems were found in precincts with high proportions of black and elderly voters." The NYT editorially acknowledged the scandal on February 15, 2004.]

On May 21, 2002, Ashcroft's Justice Department began a suit against Florida counties "for purging Black voters from voter rolls and other violations of civil rights" Now, four years after the 2000 election, illegally "purged" Florida voters will not be notified until it is "too late to have their rights restored for this election - or are turned away on Election Day", reports the Tampa Tribune. "The vast majority of them are black and would be likely to vote Democratic." It's difficult for convicted felons to regain the right to vote in Florida, but many on the "purge" lists were not (in 2000) and still are not felons at all. [ note : Greg Palast - busy of late - must be most credited with blowing this story wide open. See here here, here.....]
posted by troutfishing on Jun 9, 2004 - 46 comments

Florida town changes MLK street name

Florida town changes MLK street name What's in a name, asked Shakespeare. Everything, it seems.
posted by Postroad on May 11, 2004 - 41 comments

Tigger arrested on molestation charges

Tigger arrested on molestation charges. Why couldn't it have been Eeyore? or Piglet?
posted by aaaaa on Apr 2, 2004 - 28 comments

i hate taxes.

Ever hear of a "tangible tax law"? Chances are, you haven't. Florida doesn't have an income tax, so it makes up for it by having something called a tangible tax. The state of Florida taxes businesses for property they ALREADY OWN that could be used to generate income...on top of a 5.5% corporate tax rate. Many Floridians own their own businesses, a percentage of which are sole proprietorships (like me doing freelance work) and so won't owe state or corporate income taxes, yet will have to pay because of this law. Many of you have experience with property taxes, which are the most common form of Ad Valorem tax, but if you own a business or do freelance work, I suggest you educate yourself.
posted by taumeson on Mar 2, 2004 - 10 comments

Open access to government documents? What's that?

"I can make your life very difficult..." In January, journalists posing as regular citizens attempted to review documents under Florida's open access laws. 43% of all requests were denied, and in some cases volunteers were lied to, harassed or even threatened by government officials.
posted by Irontom on Feb 9, 2004 - 29 comments

Did Florida's justice system fail miserably?

Joseph P. Smith had a criminal record dating back to 1993, now suspected of kidnapping and murdering eleven year old Carlie Brucia in Sarasota. According to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Smith had a history of "second chances." How typical is this, or is this just a case of hindsight being everything?
posted by SentientAI on Feb 6, 2004 - 23 comments

Florida Art Gallery

Florida Art Gallery: 'Lowbrow Psycho Mod Pop Underground Artwork'.
posted by hama7 on Jan 9, 2004 - 3 comments

shoplifters of the world

Jeb Bush, comedian. "It looks like the people of San Francisco are an endangered species, which may not be a bad thing. That's probably good news for the country."
posted by the fire you left me on Nov 13, 2003 - 50 comments

Florida's New Senator

Florida's New Senator. Bob Graham's retiring and not running for re-election of his senate seat. It's sad to see a good senator go. But not to worry because the end of this Floridian's distinguished senatorial career marks the beginning of another... Katherine Harris for U.S. Senate 2004!
posted by gregb1007 on Nov 7, 2003 - 12 comments

Jeb Bush Should be Ashamed

What Jeb Bush is up to these days. A followup to a dreadful situation in the state of Florida.
posted by tommyspoon on Aug 27, 2003 - 23 comments

Tampa drops face-recognition system

Tampa drops face-recognition system The Tampa Police Department says the system, which scans faces in a crowd and compares them with a database of criminals, didn't help them catch even one criminal. Could it be that law enforcement is starting to understand that technology is no substitution for good old fashioned police work?
posted by whirlwind29 on Aug 23, 2003 - 8 comments

The Historical Museum of Southern Florida

The Historical Museum of Southern Florida. A good set of exhibits and collections : the Afro-Cuban Orisha religion and associated arts; the Miami Centennial Quilt; South American music in Miami; illustrating Cuba's flora and fauna; vintage Cuban postcards; selections from Audubon's 'Birds of America'; Pan Am memorabilia; and more.
posted by plep on Jun 20, 2003 - 9 comments

jesus loves you, but not in that way

Walt Disney World's recent designation as a no-fly zone has had an additional consequence: Christian extremists can no longer harass gay tourists from above.
posted by donkeyschlong on Jun 3, 2003 - 28 comments

Bob Graham's diary

Bob Graham, Florida senator and Democratic presidential aspirant, burned 246 calories on his exercise bike on Feb. 7, 1999. Good thing, because he weighed in that morning at 187, up one pound from the previous day. How do we know this? Because over the past 26 years, Graham has filled box after box with journals capturing an incredible, some say obsessive, level of detail about his daily life. Quirky, sure; parody friendly, no doubt; but will the GOP be successful in using it to paint him as crazy? (Salon daypass req. for last link)
posted by luser on Jun 3, 2003 - 17 comments

Suckers!TM

Jeb Bush has asked a court to appoint a guardian for the fetus of a developmentally disabled rape victim. (reg: mefi, mefi) Never mind that in a 1989 case, the Florida Supreme Court declared that it was "clearly improper" to appoint a guardian for a fetus.

The 22-year-old woman is so disabled that her pregnancy is considered a product of rape, is incapable of consenting to a DNA test and cannot otherwise help the police find the father; but I'm sure she'll make a great mom!
posted by magullo on May 16, 2003 - 45 comments

No more Scarlet Letter!

Is this your fetus? Are you the one I slept with? Remember when we discussed this before? Florida has now been forced by 4 plaintiffs and the ACLU to repeal the so-called Scarlet Letter law that forces women who are pregnant and giving children up for adoption to take out an ad local papers once a week for 4 weeks, stating her name and her sexual history in the last year, to let men know if they *might* be the father. Here is the ACLU legal brief. The details about the decision are in the first link. Thank god for the ACLU.
posted by aacheson on Apr 25, 2003 - 46 comments

Florida's Culture Cutbacks

Rallies in the streets didn't do much stop it. The Florida Division of Cultural Affairs distributed $28M last year to 720 arts organizations. Gov. Geb Bush proposed a 57% cut to $12M. The House proposed $6.6M, a 78% cut. The Senate voted to abolish the fund, and today the House voted 67-44 in agreement with the Senate. Some Florida press are calling it "culture on the chopping block" but arts groups are mobilizing action in hope of some funding miracle.
posted by bclark on Apr 25, 2003 - 17 comments

Attention Deficit Disorder

Choking Man. This weirdo has been running around South Florida for a few months, feigning choking in front of women in parking lots. Why do people feel the need to act out Chuck Palahniuk's stories?
posted by shadow45 on Mar 17, 2003 - 9 comments

substitute ruins Christmas for kindergartners

"No, Virginia Hayley, there isn't a Santa Claus" A substitute teacher in Florida was reading aloud to her class of Kindergartners when the subject unexpectedly turned to the existence of Santa Claus. Rather than perpetuate a myth, "Mrs. P" chose to come clean with the gathered five year olds, and explained that there was no Santa, and that all presents "come from mom and dad." Well, next thing you know, kids are crying, parents are protesting, and the teacher feels awful. In an effort to "make up for the teacher's lapse," the school district decides to send in a "Santa" to visit the class in order to "set the record straight": "Today's visiting Santa, with a natural, full white beard, should convince even a classroom full of skeptics, said district spokesman Englehart. 'He's the real deal.'" Great! Well, except for the fact that he's not. (via obscurestore)
posted by pardonyou? on Dec 13, 2002 - 123 comments

Is state government finally doing something right?

Is state government finally doing something right? Who knows? this seems legit enough. Apparently, if you register you can get cyber security alerts delivered to your mailbox. Can I register if I'm from say, Nebraska? Furthermore, how real is the threat to Florida's cyber infrastructure anyways?
posted by Captain Supermarket on Nov 21, 2002 - 11 comments

I'm amazed. (And no, this isn't a Lone Star thread.) For all the politics fuss we've engaged in over the last 2 years, I'm a bit surprised that no one thought it a fit topic for discussion that Florida lost 100,000 votes this week. In Broward County. But of course, those are the *only* votes we lost track of, right...?
posted by baylink on Nov 8, 2002 - 5 comments

Florida Machine Records Votes for Wrong Candidate.

Florida Machine Records Votes for Wrong Candidate. OK, I know Matt Drudge isn't exactly a venerated news outlet, but he is in South Florida. And he's reporting that a West Palm Beach voter called in to a South Florida radio talk show to report that when he voted for McBride this morning the machine counted his vote for Bush. After he'd tried three times, the voter said, an observing poll worker finally acknowledged that the machine would have to be reprogrammed, since earlier voters had experienced the same problem. There is no official confirmation of this problem, but calls to the same radio show two years ago evidently foreshadowed the 2000 election debacle. I'll be keeping an eye on sites like Josh Marshall's Talking Points Memo as the day wears on. In the end, what should the electorate do (in addition to initiating lawsuits) if outcome-determining irregularities surface in yet another Florida election?
posted by maud on Nov 5, 2002 - 68 comments

Ever visit the Pro Football Hall of Fame?

Ever visit the Pro Football Hall of Fame? I haven't...I live in Florida. In honor of football season, however, check it out online. It has some pretty neat features, like how football teams got named, concise team histories, and a timeline of how American Football came about. Princeton vs. Rutgers in 1869 started it all....
posted by taumeson on Oct 8, 2002 - 22 comments

More mischief in Florida: Jeb's "devious plans"

More mischief in Florida: Jeb's "devious plans" Unaware that a reporter with a tape recorder was present, Jeb Bush told Florida lawmakers last wednesday about his "couple of devious plans" to thwart the will of Florida voters. And that's not all....
posted by troutfishing on Oct 6, 2002 - 21 comments

Was Jeb Bush fed the Florida Grubernatorial debate? The governor addresses random voter "Sylvia" in regards to her question. The problem is that the moderator didn't say a woman named Sylvia has a question until three minutes later. (More inside)
posted by XQUZYPHYR on Oct 1, 2002 - 32 comments

This Green House,

This Green House, an Orlando couple's struggle to build the ecologically friendly home of their dreams: "The question eventually comes down to the price of environmental consciousness. I was asked, 'Why bother with all these things if the readily available alternatives are suitable?' And my best response is: 'Why not?'"
posted by mr_crash_davis on Sep 29, 2002 - 11 comments

Jeb Bush delivers Florida ... to Janet Reno's opponent in the primary.

Jeb Bush delivers Florida ... to Janet Reno's opponent in the primary. Not a repost of the trouble-at-the-polls brouhaha. Carl Hiaasen looks at the Bush team's "stupendous" backfire in targeting a second-tier candidate, eventual winner Bill McBride, in an apparently incessant string of TV ads that moved McBride from anonymity to a fearsome candidate. "Why else would the GOP buy so much TV time to slam him?" asks Hiaasen, and indeed, McBride's follow-up ads capitalized on this notoriety. By carrying the primary, the race against Bush gets more interesting: "Reno is a known quantity about whom most voters already feel strongly one way or the other," notes Hiaasen. "McBride is a fresh face with no Clinton baggage and a Bronze Star from the Vietnam War."
posted by blueshammer on Sep 12, 2002 - 11 comments

Two-headed turtle found in Florida

Two-headed turtle found in Florida
Probably not all that interesting as a single link, but it turns out there are many animals out there with 2 heads. There's a Two-headed moose fetus, The Full Range of animals with 2 heads, Two Headed Snakes, and here's A Nice Bibliography on the double head topic.
As for the turtle, they let it go, "We didn't want it to become a freak in a freak show," they said.
posted by Blake on Sep 12, 2002 - 17 comments

Another election debacle in Florida.

Another election debacle in Florida. One year and $30m in technology later, the Reno/McBride primary is marred by late openings and other assorted and sundry glitches. I know, it's a CNN link, but I can't resist anything that includes someone delivering the grade "F-minus-minus-minus" (later determined to be merely an "F-minus-minus" and some Drambuie). Any personal voting horror stories from our Florida contingent? Will the state become a case study in how "throwing money at the problem" never works?
posted by mkultra on Sep 12, 2002 - 27 comments

Florida just might screw it up again, with problems voting state-wide, with concentrations in the southern portion of the state. With the fame of the Reno vote, along with the controversial gay rights issue on the ballot, can they afford to screw this up? And if they do, what next? More lawsuits?
posted by benjh on Sep 10, 2002 - 30 comments

This week, two boys in Florida were tried for the bludgeoning-murder of their father. With accusations raised of the actual killing to have been done by another, adult male with alleged sexual ties to the two boys, the boys were found guilty only of a lesser second-degree murder charge, claiming the adult must have done the actual deed... yet the jury was unaware the adult accused and being tried for that very idea was acquitted of all charges the previous week. The issue? Both trials were handled by the same prosecutor who presented completely different theories to each jury... in other words, not settling on a confident belief of who actually performed the killing, the prosecution tried to get both the adult and the pair of boys convicted for it. Isn't that risky? Or, if you like a different flavor of debate, isn't that completely unethical?
posted by XQUZYPHYR on Sep 7, 2002 - 40 comments

Florida to settle 2000 election lawsuit.

Florida to settle 2000 election lawsuit. Major provisions include a promise for massive reforms in voter registration, voter-roll maintenance and polling practices, as part of the lawsuit pushed by the NAACP. Granted, it's good that a large angered group is "getting over it" as many (even on this board) have still been explaining, but should skeptics (read: Democrats) such as myself read the Florida legislature's desire to settle as a sign that they may not have thought they would have won against charges of rigging the election?
posted by XQUZYPHYR on Aug 31, 2002 - 11 comments

Watch those Waterway in Florida

Watch those Waterway in Florida says the U.S. Coast Guard. Possible terrorist threats include drawing or taking photographs of the shore, being near the shore for a long time, and under no circumstances would any law abiding citizen be doing something as daring and thoroughly terrorist-like as renting a boat.
posted by benjh on Aug 23, 2002 - 37 comments

DCF leader: It's OK to spank

DCF leader: It's OK to spank The man named Thursday by Gov. Jeb Bush to head Florida's notoriously inept child welfare agency is an evangelical Christian who views spanking that causes ''bruises or welts'' as acceptable punishment. In a 1989 essay entitled The Christian World View of the Family, Regier and co-author George Rekers railed against abortion and gay couples forming families, and emphasized that husbands have ``final say in any family dispute.''
posted by bas67 on Aug 17, 2002 - 82 comments

Florida's child services system lost track of over 500 children; Sun-Sentinel newspaper locates 9 of them using public records and high tech gadgets like the telephone.
posted by junkbox on Aug 13, 2002 - 11 comments

Women who put babies up for adoption required to publish sexual pasts

Women who put babies up for adoption required to publish sexual pasts Web sites can't collect info on minors, but Florida wants all women, including minors, to publish their sexual history in local newspapers before they're allowed to give their child up for adoption. Abortions are difficult to get in Florida, almost impossible for some minors because of parental notification and permission requirements, yet wouldn't this law push more women towards abortion rather than towards adoption?
posted by dejah420 on Aug 7, 2002 - 83 comments

Pornographers jack domain name from Florida sheriff.

Pornographers jack domain name from Florida sheriff. Aycock said the Sheriff's Office had owned the domain name since 1995, and that its registration is current. "When I was told about this, I thought they were kidding," he said. "We dug out a receipt and we're paid up through November. When we find out who's responsible for this we're going to go after them. I am not very happy that this has happened."

The Sheriff may discover that precious few laws protect him and that prosecuting a Canadian company could be tricky. Link from Delaware Law Office.
posted by mikewas on Jul 9, 2002 - 5 comments

Canine candidate challenges Harris in FL elections

Canine candidate challenges Harris in FL elections Harris the dog is running as a write-in candidate in the Republican primary. Percy is described as "a compassionate conservative who takes a hard-line with social parasites, particularly fleas and worms. His past is free of sex scandals, due to 'timely neutering.'" A great reminder of why this country is so great.
posted by wackybrit on Jul 3, 2002 - 25 comments

Ah, the law in Florida. (NYT)

Ah, the law in Florida. (NYT) The rich princess pushed her maid down a flight of stairs, but will be allowed to plead no contest to a misdemeanor charge of battery without having to appear in court, pay a $1,000 fine and give a judge a letter of regret about injuries to her Indonesian maid in the incident. All this because the maid cannot be in court. After she went home to Jakarta in May for her mother's funeral, the United States Embassy there denied her a visa to return to Florida and testify on the grounds that she might try to stay in this country illegally. The maid is also the primary witness in a federal investigation of the princess for possibly employing Ms. Soryono under conditions of involuntary servitude, the Justice Department said. After the court hearing in Orlando, this federal investigation appears likely to end without charges.
posted by semmi on Jul 2, 2002 - 4 comments

Neighborly love

Neighborly love Baited cat traps, regular trips to the pound to get animals euthanized, erecting signs outside a 14-year-old girl's bedroom to taunt her about her missing pet, having another girl arrested at school... Wow.
posted by NortonDC on Jun 24, 2002 - 150 comments

Election 2000 Enchantment: A love, crime story...

Election 2000 Enchantment: A love, crime story... From the author's geocities site: "Election 2000 Enchantment," by Elaine North, is a fun-filled adventure of two young women, who are ballot hand recounters during the Florida election crisis. The young women encounter intrigue, romance, passion, crime, danger and deception as they meet some of the many people from across the country that converge upon Florida due to the derailed presidential election. Exploitation or creativity? You decide.
posted by krewson on Jun 11, 2002 - 6 comments

Florida announces close to a thousand children missing...

Florida announces close to a thousand children missing... After the Rilya Wilson tragedy, Florida desperately tries to meet and account for all children within the social services child welfare office and comes up with 972 unaccounted for and a lot of ifs, ands, buts, and maybe's...
posted by gloege on Jun 4, 2002 - 17 comments

Small free speech zones

Small free speech zones on public college campuses seem incongruous. A more-carrot, less-stick solution might be a free speech zone that was indoors, with seating, like part of this was. Maybe then, fewer people would want to demonstrate elsewhere. This would probably ony work if people regularly came to listen and debate.
posted by engelr on May 8, 2002 - 9 comments

Buried in debt, wallowing in multiple bankruptcies, with a trail of ill will across three states:

Buried in debt, wallowing in multiple bankruptcies, with a trail of ill will across three states: this is the state of Anita Bryant twenty five years after her anti-gay campaign in Florida. Perhaps these right-wing Christian groups who have recently been attacking gay and S&M events should take a lesson from this.
posted by dnash on Apr 29, 2002 - 44 comments

Walgreen's Pharmacist refuses to fill prescription.

Walgreen's Pharmacist refuses to fill prescription. Do pharmacists have the right to refuse to fill a prescription because of religious beliefs? Should they? Well, they do in Florida.
posted by Stretch on Apr 24, 2002 - 103 comments

Remember that Florida Mayor who banned Satan from town?

Remember that Florida Mayor who banned Satan from town? Well, after she got done talking to mass-media syncophants like Dan Rather, her utterly misguided publicist apparently let her talk to the keen and incisive sleuths from Satanosphere, who, as usual, got down to the really important stuff. Like:
matt: ...The one question everybody has for you is this: Are you planning on banning any other major deities or demons? Like Skeletor?
So, will Skeletor be banned forever from Inglis, Florida? Will the ACLU extend Skeletor the same legal protection as it graciously offered Satan? And perhaps most important of all, what about Wil Wheaton?
posted by rusty on Mar 21, 2002 - 13 comments

ATHEIST license plate too offensive for Florida.

ATHEIST license plate too offensive for Florida. The state has declared one man's personalized license plate as too obscene or offensive after he's had it for 16 years. This from the same state where you can buy a "Choose Life" speciality tag, which I'm sure some people also find offensive.
posted by ahughey on Mar 14, 2002 - 66 comments

Boy, 7, charged after crashing dad's car.

Boy, 7, charged after crashing dad's car. Nothing beats good old Florida justice. Enough said.
posted by wackybrit on Feb 18, 2002 - 16 comments

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