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Florida Political Opinion Columns

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Informed Personalities from Across the State, Across the Spectrum
Rosemary Goudreau's picture
Saturday, May 04, 2013 — Rosemary Goudreau

Dear readers,

I’m sorry to tell you that we’re closing Florida Voices at the end of the week. Our last day of publication will be Friday, May 3.

Rosemary Curtiss and I had high hopes when we launched Florida Voices 18 months ago. But the business of online media is a tough slog. While we managed to secure...

Margo Pope's picture
Friday, May 03, 2013 — Margo Pope

As media websites throughout Florida on Tuesday told of the end of the notorious “parent trigger” bill for this year, one state senator nailed the problem – the law already allows parents to get involved in fixing failing public schools but few of them bother to do so.

The speaker was Sen. Bill Montford, a respected lawmaker and executive director of the Florida Association of District School...

Angel Castillo Jr's picture
Friday, May 03, 2013 — Angel Castillo Jr

As Winston Churchill warned about the Soviet Union in a famous 1946 speech, it is urgent for all Americans to understand today that an iron curtain of tyranny is descending upon Venezuela.

Under the direction of Cuba’s secret police, a Marxist cabal of fascist thugs led by the former bus driver Nicolas Maduro, 50, stole last month’s presidential election in a stealth voting machine coup.  They...

Paula Dockery's picture
Thursday, May 02, 2013 — Paula Dockery

Surely with a Republican governor, Senate and House, the legislative session will run smoothly, and agreement, cooperation and mutual goals will highlight a timely and successful conclusion.

To the average observer, it’s hard to fathom why this is not necessarily the case. Perhaps it’s ego or ambition or even human nature.  But after 16 years in the Florida Legislature, I have learned that, despite the...

Susan Clary's picture
Thursday, May 02, 2013 — Susan Clary

We are taught from an early age that the better person ignores insults. Firing back in anger risks escalating a situation to the point of no return and becoming the bully we so despise.

But sometimes name-calling cannot be ignored. The family of Adam Holland, a Tennessee man with Down syndrome, is suing a St. Petersburg radio station and others for allegedly altering a photo of him to include a...

Martin Dyckman's picture
Wednesday, May 01, 2013 — Martin Dyckman

The mail brought a pleasant surprise one day, a check for some $30 or so, just enough for a modest dinner out. It was from some lawyers I didn’t know and hadn’t ever talked to. But with my passive consent -- that is, by my not objecting to the notice of class action lawsuit that I had received, they had represented me (and many thousands of others) against a big, bad bank.

They had sniffed out what...

Rick Outzen's picture
Wednesday, May 01, 2013 — Rick Outzen

The Florida Senate proved its value on Tuesday by not approving SB 0862, the Parent Empowerment in Education Act -- better known as the “Parent Trigger” bill. The tie vote -- 20-20, the same tally as last year – effectively killed the proposed legislation.

The House version passed with the backing of former Gov. Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Florida's Future and another group headed by Michelle Rhee,...

Bill Cotterell's picture
Tuesday, April 30, 2013 — Bill Cotterell

During the past week to 10 days, House and Senate negotiators have worked on scores of details, big and small, in the $74 billion state budget for the fiscal year starting  July 1.

Some of their meetings have lasted about 90 seconds. Sometimes, the roll call takes longer than the formal exchange of budget offers in what is, legally, a "public" meeting.

It's an odd way to make big, important...

Florence Snyder's picture
Tuesday, April 30, 2013 — Florence Snyder

In the 1970s, Big Media had more money than the boards of directors knew what to do with.  Wall Street took notice, and, soon, consultants in gray flannel suits started showing up in newsrooms with binders full of advice about how to “improve the product for the consumer.”

Publishers pretended to listen to these people so that their line editors and beat reporters didn’t have to.  Like Orson Wells in the...

Pierre Tristam's picture
Monday, April 29, 2013 — Pierre Tristam

This beheading takes a little scene-setting.

I was in my yard, enjoying the kind of April afternoon that makes Florida tourism's safer holy land. Making it a sacred moment of my own, I was drinking whiskey, smoking a cigar, and reading Lost Illusions, Balzac's novel of the perditions of journalism.