When Rick Scoot - and he does, rather quickly - got up in front of 300 GOPsters at the Martin County Lincoln Day Dinner, March 5 and called Florida's education system a "special interest" he was speaking to the choir.
Personal Rick Scott Watch observations from the event were as follows.
Not one of the people we spoke to save a newspaper reporter actually qualified themselves as "Floridians". You'd ask where people were from originally and without fail, the answer was somewhere other than Florida. Delaware, said one young couple. A kindly gentleman said Connecticut. An older, distinguished looking gent and his wife said New York.
Where is their legal residence? "Palm City, Tequesta, Jupiter, Hobe Sound, Sailfish point, etc.."
You see? Florida is just their tax condom. No state income tax.
The kindly gentleman that I spoke of? He's a 30 year educator. Before he got wealthy, and however that happened God bless him for it, he taught high school science and coached basketball. He knows about the 16 hour work days because he lived that life.
The hue and cry of more than 300 educators out front of the building, seemed conceptual to him, more than a reality. Our ways parted when we informed him we did not serve in the military, but we did experience some of the wildest, baddest bush-jungle known, in Honduras as a U.S. Peace Corps volunteer.
He commented here that the guayabera we wore was a shirt similar to those he bought in Mexico as a younger man. And then just as quickly he was off to speak with a congressman.
At some point, an elegant woman with a red scarf shuddered to discover all the assembled masses out on the road, up and down either side of East Ocean Drive, were wearing red.
"What does the red mean?" she laughed slightly and a bit nervously, perhaps thinking that if she left the room she wouldn't gain entrance again.
Playing our part we feigned ignorance.
The point of this vignette here should be clear: these, are not, Floridians. They aren't even trying to fake it. Hence, they do not care, what happens to our children.
The only thing our children represent to this crowd, mostly older, for the most part retired, is a drain on their bottom line, a clinging annoyance; a "special interest."
It brings up another observation. These people want our children to remain ignorant and lacking opportunity. They want our children to fail, miserably. Get used to that it will clear up a lot of mystery for you. How could this kindly old gentlemen hate children so? Because he has grand kids back in Conn. and if yours are smarter than his using public schools, that upsets everything he stands for!! AND it means your kids might actually get into Harvard before his nietos do!!
What are the larger reasons? Why would they want to destroy Florida's public education system you say? Surely it's just a union thing. Big business has always been about hurting the unions.
No. It's more than that.
The destruction of our education system is paramount in the mind of big business in order to return Florida to what it was in the 1940s and earlier, a quaint, wild place with decent seafood, and great golf and cheap labor. Think the heyday of Weeki Wachi Springs; well endowed mermaids in tanks slurping on air hoses. Paid peanuts to smile while men in floral print guzzle umbrella drinks. Like that. Yeah.
I reflect on Gov. "Scoot's" little show with The Donald. The kids dressed in those goddamn stupid hats and those yellow T-shirts. They looked like the bus boys, chambermaids, waiters, cabana boys. The careers Scoot envisions for our children.
"Here look at our wonderfully cheap, eager to please, sufficiently dumbed down workforce we have created for you," he seemed to be saying with his little menagerie there.
Florida is coming along in the world. The education system is its biggest achievement.Our university system especially. University of Florida has joined the ranks of one of the elite schools. Minimum 4.0 GPA only. USF is busy sending medical students to Johns Hopkins, Emory; others are going to Oxford, and Harvard.
Those who call the Northeast home, and use Florida for their tax condom, really don't like to see us breaking the stereotype of "Floriduh" They fucking HATE that.
Organized labor is a speed-bump in the road to crushing this 'SPECIAL INTEREST" called our children's future. It doesn't matter if you swing more to the right or left. If you love this state, and want your children to remain here, and perhaps raise their children here, with a chance for making this state what it could be #1 in the nation for business, beaches and a better tomorrow, then you must stand with organized labor.
Rick Scoot, isn't the governor of Floridians. He's not. Let's accept that. His words don't reflect a love for our kids, but a contempt for them as a cloying special interest. He speaks more about Obama than Florida. He relishes his chats with other Koch'd up governors, than speaking with anyone about a pill mill data base.
Come Tuesday, if you can't get to Tally to Rally for schools, kids and teachers, then keep watching.
You know we will.