between the devil and the deep blue sea – politics in Key West and the Florida Keys

devil on vacation

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Kari at Higgs

For the second Thursday in a row, I was not able to visit my lady Kari in the Monroe County Detention Center. Yesterday, the phones in the women’s visiting area were down. Thursday before last, the elevators were not working, and all visitation was canceled. Both times, people had come down from the mainland, who did not get to visit relatives or friends in the jail. Yesterday, a family had come down from Jacksonville to visit a woman inmate, and were turned away.

When I told my gracious host Todd German about it yesterday,

Todd German

he said, “That’s unacceptable.” Agreed. But being a redneck mystic, I looked past that when Kari called on the regular phone in the jail to tell me what I already knew, including the family from Jacksonville being turned away. I told her, it was a spirit intervention. It was no accident. She said she didn’t know about that.

Kari and Sloan 2

Later yesterday, in a letter to Kari, I said the Las Vegas odds, the horse racing odds, of that happening to us two weeks in a row were zero, but the spirit odds were 100 percent. When we talked against last night on the phone, I said I knew it was spirit doing, but what was the meaning? The devil doesn’t want me visiting her in the jail, or God doesn’t? The devil doesn’t like what I’m publishing, or God doesn’t?

I found myself wondering if even more “poltergeist” stuff would happen, as long as Kari is in jail? I found myself wondering if the Sheriff will be darn glad Kari is not in his jail? I found myself wondering if Judge Ptomey up on Plantation Key will be darn glad he after does not have Kari to deal with? I can’t help wondering like that, I’m a redneck mystic ex-layer, and redneck mystic ex-lawers think like that, because they know things they get involved in don’t proceed “normal”, things they get involved in get “weird”, “kinky”, “strange”.

Moving laterally, to Key West the Newspaper and my friends Naja and Arnaud Girard,

NajaArnaud Girard

 

who publish it each Friday at www.thebluepaper.com. Despite many opportunities, they seem to not in the least believe stuff that happens in which they and I together get involved has a spirit activity in play. They have lots of company in Key West and the Florida Keys. Lots of people here have had dealings with me, and have not grokked what for me are blatant spirit activities going on in our joint experiences.

Today is the third Friday in a row Naja and Arnaud have not covered anything for which they are known to cover in the blue paper. Juicy controversial local political, police, environmental intrigue, cover up, misbehavior by public and quasi-public officials and entities. What’s with that? Are they on vacation. Wish I could have a vacation.

snoopy bicycle

Heading back into town from the jail yesterday, I noticed a bump, bump, bump in the rear tire of my bicycle, when I was coasting. To the bike shop on Truman I headed. Yep, a bubble had developed on the left sidewall of the rear tire. New tire and new tube needed. Bump, bump, bump fixed.

shuttle

On the city transit shuttle bus yesterday afternoon, I heard a big flapping sound over by the rear right dual wheels. I told the bus driver. She said there was a noise under the front right wheel. We kept going. Left town. Above Big Coppit Key, she pulled off the road, got out of the bus, looked at the front and rear wheels, called the bus depot, reported tires out of commission, they dispatched a replacement bus pronto, in 30 minutes we were on our way again. I compared that to what I had happened two weeks running in the jail. Apples and dog poop. Apples was the bus line.

the sky is falling

Something was after me yesterday, for sure. I kinda don’t think it was God. I kinda don’t think it was God, because it’s been fencing with me, and me with it, ever since I arrived in Key West in early December 2000, after being sent here by the angels, from Maui, where it fenced with me plenty.

I was broke, homeless, on Maui. Waking one morning, I heard the familiar voice say, “Go to Big Pine Key.” The same thing I’d heard in January 1995, in my sleep. I made that trip, something supernatural happened on No Name Key Bridge, and I was told, “Because you love this place so much, you will be used to try to protect it, which forcasted my later living on Little Torch Key and becoming active in county politics and trying to save what had not yet been paved over in the Florida Keys.

On Maui, early December, no money, I had no way to get to Big Pine Key. In three days, I was in the air, en route. When the Greyhound bus from Los Angeles reached the western outskirts of Tallahassee, the Florida state capitol, I dozed off. In a dream, the US District Judge, for whom I had clerked after graduating from the University of Alabama School of Law, show up and said he was thinking about getting into politics. I awoke, in shock.

Clarence AllgoodClarence Allgood 2

When he was alive, Clarence W. Allgood ran the Democratic Party in Alabama, which was the political party in Alabama. No Democrat ran for national office without Judge Allgood’s approval. No Democrat in the Birmingham area ran for state office without Judge Allgood’s approval. Waking from what Judge Allgood had told me in the dream, I knew I would get into politics in the Florida Keys.

When the bus reached Big Pine, I heard to go on down to Key West. I slept the first night on the sidewalk outside the Pegas Hotel on Southard Street. That’s how my getting into politics in the Florida Keys began, in the sewer.

Oh, what you learn in the sewer, which you do not otherwise learn. Oh what you learn in churches, from the sewer. In city commission meetings, from the sewer. In town hall meetings, from the sewer. In soup kitchen lines, from the sewer. About local police, from the sewer. About elected city officals, from the sewer. About the local population, from the sewer. About homeless people, from the sewer. About people who minister to homeless people, from the sewer.

Well, I progressed out of the sewer, and then I was not viewed as a bum, a vagrant, a dirt bag. I was viewed with some measure of respect, or at least caution, even though I clearly and often stated that I was not homeless because I’d received an inheritance from my father on Valentine’s Day, 2006. Otherwise, I was the same bum, vagrant, dirt bag, who had lived on the street in Key West, and on Maui, and who had stayed in homeless shelters in Key West and elsewhere, and who had lived in friends’ homes in Key West and elsewhere. For I did not earn a living. I worked for God, and God did not pay me money, and society would not pay me money for the very hard, and very dangerous, and very discouraging work I did, ongoing.

Yesterday afternoon, pedaling my old, ugly bicycle to where I keep it locked up at night, after the good bicycle I had was stolen from the bike rack in front of the hospital on Stock Island, I came up behind a fellow on a bicycle, wearing a T-shirt featuring a pub on the back. I asked where that pub was. He pointed over at St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic church, which we were just passing. I said, what, they have wine iced down in there? He laughed, said, no, the pub is everywhere, he slept the night in front of the church offices. I said, in the past, I had slept on the front steps of the church. Didd they still let people do that? No, now they are into love, he said. I laughed.

I said, back in 2001, I was standing in the Glad Tidings Church soup kitchen line in Bayview Park one Sunday afternoon, when one of the church members told us, if we accepted Jesus as our savior, we would not be homeless. I hollered, what’s wrong with being homeless? Jesus was homeless! A young pastor in the church came over and argued with me that I was mistaken, and I told him he needed to read his Bible, Jesus said the foxes have their dens and the birds have their nests, but he had no place to lay down his head. The young minister said the passage did not mean that, and, besides, Jesus had a home. Where?, I asked. He could stay with his mother, the young pastor said. I said, not likely, Jesus had nothing nice to say to or about his mother in the Gospels.

The homeless man on the bicycle with me beside Mary Star of the Sea laughed, said again, now it’s all about love. I figured he was drunk most of the time, but he seemed to have a pretty good grasp on the situation.

Sippin'

When I arrived at Sippin’ Internet Cafe this morning, to write up most of this post for today, was slow getting started at Todd German’s house this morning, where he graciously lets me stay, so I won’t live on the street again, I was greeted by a black fellow I have had some chats with in the past. He works for Monroe County and is a lawyer and has a private mostly probate practice.

Charles Eimer's take down

Arnaud Giard blue paper “cartoon” about the apprehension of Charles Eimers

He asked me if I think the Feds will investigate the death of Charles Eimers in KWPD custody? I said I doubted it, they probably think they can’t get a conviction, although perhaps they could convict Office Gary Lee Lovette,

Gary Lee Lovette

because of the things he said, which got recorded, then later he claimed he made all of that up, he was bragging. The lawyer asked me if Lovette was fired? No, I said, he’s still on the job, he’s Key West’s poster cop, the mayor and city commissioner like him, want all of their cops to be like him. We know that, because he’s still on the police force.

I said Eimers died because the cops thought he was homeless. No way they treat him that way, if they thought he was a tourist. They would have treat him like they treated former city commissioner Harry Bethel’s son, who would not let go of the steering wheel of his car, would not get out of the car, would not take a breath test. They treated him nice. The lawyer agreed.

Eimers one human

another Arnaud Girard blue paper cartoon on the Eimers case, there were even others

The lawyer said he liked it that I went to a city commission meeting and told the mayor and the city commissioners that Charles’ Eimers’ blood was on their hands. I said, and I told them they all should resign. He said they didn’t like what I told them, are afraid of me. I said I doubted that. They did not change, not one of them. They circled the wagons tighter.

I said, when it was time for them to vote on whether or not to accept their insurance company’s settlement with the Eimers family, since it was an item on the printed agenda, I signed up to speak and they had to let me speak. I started talking, and City Clerk Cheri Smith cut me off, said I was not speaking to the agenda item. I said I was indeed speaking to the agenda item. I was telling the mayor and city commissioners to reject the insurance company’s settlement offer, and why it should be rejected.

I said, right in this very chamber, from the dais, I was violently attacked by elected officials (Commissioners Rossi and Yaniz), for what I had said in a prior city commission about their police killing Charles Eimers. Now they are going to vote to settle the case and blame it on their insurance company making a business decision? They attacked me, they said their police officers did nothing wrong. They should stick to that, defend those officers to the hilt, reject the settlement offer, fight the case all the way to the Supreme Court.

I said, what happened here was their own insurance company indicted and tried the city cops. The insurance company knew the cops were guilty and didn’t think it could win the damage suit in federal court, and was worried the suit would cost more, and that’s why the insurance company decided to offer $900,000 of the policy’s $1,000,000 limits to the Eimers family. At trial the the jury night return a much higher verdict, and more in attorney fees.

I did not say, the lawyer didn’t need me to say it, if the insurance company had not offered to settle, and if the jury had come back with, say, a $2,000,000 verdict, then the insurance company would have been negligent and would have had to pay the entire $2,000,000.

The lawyer said, I got to the mayor and city commissioners, I panted the seeds. I said, you would not know that from the way they continued to behave. Gary Lee Lovette is still on their police force.

I said, recently I was talking with a friend who had run for city commission once, and was active in city and county politics and affairs. He was lamenting the recent county commission sweetheart decision with Waste Management, and I said it was like the earlier decision the Key West city commission made with Waste Management. The fellow said it was terrible government. He gave other examples of terrible local government activity. I said, government is like that everywhere, and if he thinks he’s going to change that, he will go insane trying to change it.

The lawyer said he used to be involved in politics down here, and finally he realized he was not going to be able to change anything. I said he saved himself from going insane. I try to have some fun engaging the local governments, but I have no delusion that what I do will change anything. For if I had that delusion, I would be insane. The lawyer said, I planted the seeds. When they are old, dying, maybe they will have regret. Maybe, I said. But right now, they have the wagons circled tight, and by the time they are old and dying, it will be too late for then to make it right.

I said I no longer try cases in secular courts. I try cases now in another court, which cannot be seen. God’s court. I should have said, where everyone involved, including me, is on trial.

I told the lawyer, I’m fed up with politics down here, would like to be gone from here, but unlike other people I know, I don’t get to make that call. I’m here until the angels tell me to leave, like I was on Maui until the angels told me to leave, and I had no money and in three days I was en route to Key West, to get into politics. The lawyer nodded, he got it, that I was sent here.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

You can read “He Use to  Drink Moonshine”, my memorial to Judge Clarence  W. Allgood

Clarence Allgood

in A Few Remarkable People I Have Known. His us the first portrait. Clicking on http://goodmorningkeywest.com/?page_id=23670  should get you there to the book. Or you can go to www,goodmorningkeywest.com and open the A Few Remarkable People I Have Known page in the header menu.

If I had to hazard a wild guess, I’d say Judge Allgood presides, with other judges, over the cases I try today.

sloanbashinsky@outlook.com

Sloan at Coco's

 

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