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Jenna Stauffer’s and my TV interview on homelessness airs today at 7 AM, 8:30 AM and 7 PM on Comcast Channel 87 and U-Verse Channel 19. Also will be streaming on the web at www.weyw19.com.
“Run Lola Run” was a fantastic heart and soul whiplash, as was the acrobat performer, at Ibis Bay last night. A seriously interesting twist near the end for the homeless man who had been in on starting all the running and whiplashing, which Lola’s desperate prayer for a Divine Intervention finally brings into harmony. I think maybe the hilarious death-defying acrobat was there because it was Michael Shields’ birthday. “Young Frankenstein” is showing next Wednesday at Key West’s only outdoor theater. Movie starts around dark, free popcorn, free admission, too, I think. In Key West, pure heresy, I suppose.
Joel Biddle, who used to work for Reef Relief, sent:
Date: Thu, 17 Oct 2013 01:16:38 -0400
Subject: hello from Joel
Two articles regarding the water quality issues we spoke about, that, if you haven’t done it already, I hope you will feature on you blog:
I know you recently had lunch with Brian LaPointe and reported it on your blog, but events in the last few weeks might have overshadowed what you and Brian were talking about and it might be forgotten.
Background for some of your readers who might not know about this: Years ago Dr. Brian LaPointe was the primary scientist instrumental in forcing our Federal and State governments to admit that land based pollutants affect marine ecosystems and can kill corals… it’s a no brainer but it took years for our local and national governments to admit this and to stop flooding Florida Bay with dirty water…
As a result of this flooding, we saw a proliferation of coral diseases (Black-band, Red-band, Dark Spots, White-band, White Plague, White Pox, Yellow Blotch — just to name a few) that devastated corals on reefs throughout the Keys … Since the flow was reduced, our corals have recovered somewhat. The ugly point about the attached articles is that the dirty water that has polluted Indian River Lagoon is going to be re-released into, you guessed it, Florida Bay. The sad fact is, the resultant flows, if they are allowed, will make any damage that would have been done by widening our shipping channel and resultant harm by increased shipping and larger cruise ships seem like child’s play in comparison.
When we stopped the cruise ship industry from widening our shipping channel, we won by a vote of 71% [almost 74%], despite being heavily outspent by the opposition. Although most of us in Key West, rightly so, were concerned about the channel widening, the effects of too many one-day tourists clogging our streets, and bigger cruise ships, that’s not what that whole issue was about. The channel widening in reality was of minor concern to the cruise ship industry (and also to the farm industries and the oil industry that watched this issue closely)… It was about the next step that would bring the issue of our marine sanctuaries from Puerto Rico, Florida, Texas, Monterey, and Alaska, and, ultimately, all our parks: their charters, rules, scientific research, funding, etc. before this hideous Congress we have now — so our parks and marine sanctuaries could be gutted and exploited for short term gain. We stopped this when we stopped the widening. We did this together. And for this we should be proud.
Now we have the issue of flooding Florida Bay with dirty water. This must go before the public. We have the voice. We used it recently. And if we gather together, perhaps we can stop this all this insane madness once and for all…. it’s a story worth telling… for when it comes to water coming from the mainland, we, all of us in the Keys live downstream. For all our sakes, let’s make sure that the water is clean.
Best Always, Joel
Looks to me, the real problem for south Florida and the Keys, regardless of where it ends up, is farm chemical run-off. Wherever it ends up, the result is environmental death. Looks to me the only solution is to stop farm chemical run-off from ending up in south Florida waters. Looks to me that will take and Act of God to bring about.
Meanwhile, in the Key West Citizen today, my interjected thoughts in italics:
Editorial cartoon from Key West the Newspaper – www.thebluepaper.com
City will inform state, feds of anti-study vote
BY GWEN FILOSA Citizen Staff
In a 6 to 1 vote Wednesday, the Key West City Commission agreed to send word to state and federal elected officials that voters soundly defeated an Oct. 1 ballot measure and opposed a study on the effects of dredging to widen a portion of the shipping channel.
After intensive, months-long campaigns for and against the idea of Key West asking for a $3 million, three-year study on the impact of dredging to better accommodate longer cruise ships, voters buried the ballot question by 74 percent, or by 3-to-1.
“This is dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s,” said Commissioner Teri Johnston, who sponsored the resolution that emphasized the voters’ sentiments about the matter. “This is the first of hopefully more resolutions and codifications on this issue.”
At the same meeting, four of the seven commissioners showed support for amending the city’s charter to help make the vote’s message stick in case pro-study leaders win office over the next several years.
“It ensures the voice of those people will be heard in the future,” said Commissioner Tony Yaniz.
Key West will also tell the Army Corps of Engineers that the city “intends to pursue and enact future legislation to codify the intent and opposition expressed by the electorate,” the proposal approved Wednesday states.
Several anti-study proponents on Wednesday asked the commission to deliver a unanimous vote, but Commissioner Mark Rossi stuck to his guns and voted no.
“They’ll know in four years when cruise ships stop coming and taxes go up,” Rossi said during the meeting’s break after voting no.
Rossi, a business owner, helped bring the study referendum to the table in an effort to accommodate the cruise ship industry’s larger ships.
Rossi’s businesses are on lower Duval Street and are frequented during the day by cruise ship passengers. Rossi should have recused himself, even though, as I recall, a ruling was gotten from the state ethics commission, or some good for nothing bureauracy in Tallahassee, that he did not have a conflict of interest.
“That wasn’t my experience at all,” said Arlo Haskell, a local poet who worked on the anti-study campaign. “It was a tremendous show of unity in Key West, unlike anything I’ve ever seen.”
Haskell asked the commission to respect the voters’ anti-study decision by voting together.
“The city deserves a unanimous vote here,” said Haskell. “That’s the only thing that reflects the will of the people.”
Actually, the will of the people was 74-36. Not quite 3-1 against the bigger cruise ships referendum. 6-1 is slightly more than double the will of the people, who took the time to vote. Only 41 percent voted. So we can only speculate what the will of the other 59 percent is.
The ballot question dominated the city’s election on Oct. 1 and brought a 41 percent voter turnout. The 2011 city election’s turnout was only 26 percent.
Political action committees formed in February to mount opposing campaigns. The Greater Key West Chamber of Commerce created a PAC, which spent some $153,000 between February and Oct. 1, insisting that voting ‘yes’ would only produce a study, not a wider, dredged channel and bigger ships.
The Key West Committee for Responsible Tourism, which declared the study request merely one more step toward dredging in the federally protected waters that surround the island, spent about half of what the chamber did.
Chamber PAC leaders did not concede an inch after the Oct. 1. defeat. Instead, attorney Jennifer Hulse warned the commission to keep watch over the local tourism economy, which she predicted will decline due to fewer cruise ship passengers.
I hope the cruise ship passenger numbers decrease to zero. So should everyone else living in Key West given the Chamber’s President Robin Lockwood, M.D. said at a referendum forum that the dirtiest, worst possible cruise ships are calling on Key West, and will continue to do that for the next twenty years, until the channel was widened, so even bigger allegedly environmentally-clean cruise ships could call on Key West.
Editorial cartoon from Key West the Newspaper
The City Commission should do all it can to stop cruise ships from calling on Key West, for the same reason the people of Florida should be doing all they can to stop farm chemical run-off from going into Florida waters. Key West can stop cruise ships from calling on Key West without an Act of God. The people of Florida, however, need to follow Lola’s lead, and ask for a Divine Intervention.
Jennifer Hulse kept saying at referendum forums that she is an environmentalist, she loves to dive and fish. Maybe the next time Jennifer is diving, Mother Nature will send an emissary to speak to Jennifer.
Meanwhile, John Benson, who has lived for the past seven years at KOTS, the city’s homeless shelter, and who is on the Board of Southern Assistant Homeless League (SHAL), wrote to me about yesterday’s Jesus conspiracies; inheritance of fortune, misfortune, longevity – Key West and way beyond post at goodmorningkeywest.com:
Do I understand correctly. You create pieces of this length every day?
Today’s article was longer than usual, most are somewhat shorter, but still fairly long, some are even shorter.
Interesting allocation of writing time. I am deep inside a 2000-worder biz-personal article for a new client in DC. It is the challenge of challenges for me. The work requires for MBA and consulting skills, so to be able to comprehend their story in a business frame of reference. Yet, this is for a international magazine publishing in the realm of personal-biz-interest stories. A bit of the Novelist’s flair for the enticing story-told adds value. I am having the time of my life this week.
My other project is writing the biz proposal for United Arab Emirate investment group, now ready to publish the Muslim culture’s first politically agnostic family cartoon. Ready Rashid. This is akin to writing a proposal for a screen play, albeit one in a jurisdiction on the other side of the world.
Cool stuff. Have a nice day, Sloan. And remember.
- – -
Words we write for ourselves are guaranteed to be read by one.
Words we write for another, are guaranteed to read by at least two.
How can you tell if a a writer writes his words for himself…. or another?
Hi, John -
Wow, glad to hear you are in demand. Hope you make a bundle, get that boat, have great adventures in Paradise.
I write on what is given to me to cover, much of it is provided by other people, either in what they email to me, say to me, say at public meetings. Sometimes it is provided by a TV news program, a movie I see here in Key West. Sometimes, I write on topics given to me in dreams to cover.
It’s been years since I had a long-term writing project. It’s pretty much day to day, labor of blood, sweat, tears and love. Nobody pays me to do it, not so far, but dreams not infrequently indicate payment in a spiritual sense.
Maybe HEAVY WAIT: A Strange Tale will start generating revenues. It covers a variety of what I feel are really important topics in ways I seldom, if ever, see covered elsewhere. Same for all else I write and publish without any thought of ever getting paid for it.
2277 gratis articles at goodmmorningkeywest.com, since it was started in mid-2007. Maybe half that many different gratis articles at goodmorningfloridakeys.com started later that same year. Maybe another 500 at goodmorningbirmingham.com started about 2 years ago.
I gave away lots of copies of earlier books I wrote and self-published hoping they would be for profit. Then, I just wrote and published books intending to give them away. They did not have my name on them, nor any way to reach me, and were not copyrighted. Perhaps an early non-Internet version of what I write and publish electronically today. Topics and slants I did not see being put out by anyone else.
If I wrote only for myself, I would try to make money on everything I write. It seems I have been writing for other people since I wrote my first book in 1982, although back then I had great hope it would make me rich like my father. It didn’t do that, but it gained me a fair amount of notoriety. Same, the next two books. All three written from the well of experiences in my law practice.
Later books had a spiritual theme, and were written from the well of my experiences in that dimension, as well as in the earth dimension. Those books taxed me a great deal more than the first three books, as I was living what I was preaching and saw others trying to live, or not. Then came three novels, which were mostly fun, but not remunerative.
Also came reams of poetry, which mostly was quite emotional, spirit-filled, hope-giving, for me, perhaps for others – I got some pretty good feedback from people who read it. Same for the earlier heaven-earth books. Same for what I publish today on the websites, except that also draws sharp criticism sometimes. As did the first three books, which were Ralph Naderish exposes of the residential real estate industry (the first two books), and the lawyer-client relationship (the third book) – my farewells to the practice of law.
It is fair to say that everything I write is tied in some way to my own personal experiences in this life. I don’t know if I’m even capable of sitting down and writing for pay what someone else wants me to write, with which I have no experiential involvement. Even then, the angels would have to clear it.
They assigned me a novel to write several years ago, which I really did not like. The Chinese made it look like Islam did it. Suitcase nukes exploded simultaneously in major US cities and power grids. The US financial markets were destroyed. Congress bit the dust. The President and Vice-President bit the dust. The Supreme Court bit the dust. The Pentagon bit the dust. Nancy Pelosi was away from D.C. and became the President. Barack Obama was President-elect. I, and others with different points of view and abilities, were sent in to take charge. Because of the others’ special “powers”, Pelosi was persuaded to only act as President. I became the shadow President, calling the shots behind the scenes. Barack Obama couldn’t go along with it, so he was sent through the Stargate at NORAD in Cheyenne Mountain, where the US capitol had been relocated. The first winter, 100 million Americans in the northern states froze or starved to death. The states bordering Canada became part of Canada. The southern states became their own nation. I, and my friends with the special powers, were now dealing with the Russians; we told them who really was behind it. Then, we went to work on the Chinese in ways they had never dreamed they could be worked on. As a demonstration, the Great Wall of China was demolished in a flash, using supernatural technology. That’s where the thief came in, ended the party.
I was not comfortable being the main male protagonist. I felt the tale was far too egotistical. My wife in the tale, from the Windward Island of Dominica, where I have spent time, was the main female protagonist. We had serious heavy weight friends, who could have carried the load if we were not around. The writing had moved very slowly, sometimes only a paragraph a day, some days nothing came. So very different from earlier novels, which pretty much jumped out of me, and when the ending came, the tale was finished; no major rewrite, just touching up grammar, syntax, small glitches in facts, etc. Then, someone stole my backpack in Sippin’ Internet Cafe while I was playing chess. The laptop and the flash drive containing the backup to the novel were in the backpack. Maybe 75 percent of the novel was backed up on one of the websites, but I felt there was no way I could replace what had been lost. Frankly, I was glad it was gone, but I am not sure the angels were glad.
I think maybe 75 pages total were lost. Maybe it was only to be a novella. Maybe something else was waiting to come into the tale after the Chinese got what was coming to them. I have no clue what might have developed. What I do know is, I have not since felt any urging to write a novel. I wrote about that one’s demise, at my websites, but I never before now published anything about it, other than I never was comfortable with it. I told you a little about it over dinner, when I asked you why only 80,000 people died in the terrorist attack with anthrax in your novella, which, I suppose, is a condensation of your novel.
I suppose another measure of who an author writes for, himself, or for a larger audience, is the emotional effect on the audience. If there is no emotional effect, if the audience does not get angry, happy, sad, uplifted; if the audience does not feel it came away with something it did not already have; then, the author wrote for him/herself.
I know I write words for myself; the topic is something I need to take a look at, as it applies to me. The topic also applies to other people, and how they receive it is on them. I gave several copies of HEAVY WAIT: A Strange Tale to the county library. Maybe it is still available there. If so, check it out and read it; see if you feel I wrote it for me, or for a larger audience. The Preface tells how the novel came to be, which itself is a strange tale.
Sloan, there is a prolific writer in you. The effort and discipline that requires can be understood by few, and perhaps in reality, only those who face the same tasks.
Incredible work load guy. Respected deeply.
Hi, John – thanks.
It takes effort, usually, but I don’t relate to discipline in the sense I have to set aside time for it, stick with it. It has become a habit, sort of like breathing, eating, relieving myself; and it feeds me in a way that is hard to explain. The topics, material, are laid on me, and I respond. I view it as a job at which I work each morning, depending on when the angels wake me up, and usually there is a spell, or spells, during the rest of the day and into the evening when I am writing. If I were paid by the hour, or by the page, I might be rolling in the dough, but that is not the case so far. It won’t surprise me if our back and forth today ends up in tomorrow’s post.
I can’t imagine Heavy Wait would go down well in the Vatican, or at the Southern Baptist Convention.
Peggy Butler, formerly of Key West, now living in West Palm Beach, where she can afford the rent, wrote yesterday:
I wish you’d get The Betrayal: The Lost Life of Jesus. Read the novel about Barnabus, the monk who with his fellow monks diligently printed by hand all the gospels, including the gospel of Thomas and gospel of Mary, running parallel to the Nicean Council’s deciding which gospels to keep and which to burn, and compare it all to the 200 or so pages of bibliography, collected and researched over a 30 or so year period by the Gears, the archaeologists who wrote the book.
I’d be very interested in getting your take on it. In the novel, Barnabus runs with one or two other people (not monks) to hide the gospels they could save when the Council had the building burned, and hid them within rocks and other places. And, of course, as you know, the Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Mary have been found in such places. Ted Yaple, retired FKCC religion professor, and Sheri Lohr, publisher SeaStory Press, have given sermons from both gospels at MCC, which I always for one reason or another missed.
Please get the book. if you can. I gave mine away as a Christmas gift a few years ago, or I’d loan it to you.
I wrote back:
Hi, Peggy -
I may be mistaken, but don’t see the angels having me wade though that tombe. No slight intended, but they know I would not stick with it; I have enough difficulty reading stuff like Erika Biddle sent, promoting Jesus was invented by the Roman CIA. For me, Jesus is a living being, who engages me ongoing. Likewise, Magdalene and Archangel Michael, and others they let have at me from time to time. I am not a student of Christendom history, although I have studied what was put before me to study, when I was being brought into the angels’ view of it. Probably the best treatment lately is the movie “Stigmata”, a head-on collision, re the Gospel of Thomas, as I recall, with the Vatican and its view that it is the seat of Christ and only Christians can experience God on earth. An earlier excellent treatment is an older movie, “Brother Son Sister Moon”, about St. Francis of Assisi and Sister Claire. I don’t need to read anything to know Jesus lived and walked the earth as somewhat told in the Gospels. The main omission in the Gospels is the relationship of Jesus and Mary Magdalene, which was as important as what came through in the Gospels. Imagine how Christendom would be today, if that had been included. Imagine how Christendom would be today, if the Gospels identified the Holy Spirit as female gender. In the Gospels, Jesus told his disciples they could blaspheme against him, and they would be forgiven, but if they blasphemed against the Holy Spirit, they would not be forgiven.
I don’t want to get back up on my rocky horse so soon.
I understand, Sloan, but if you ever do want to read it, I think you’ll find it very interesting. Enjoy your night! Peg
My night was enjoyable until I turned in about 11:30. Before dawn, the angels pounded me awake for a past-life regression that floated into my email box yesterday, which, accompanied by certain memories it triggered, I thought was hilarious in a sick way. For all I know, the angels wanted me to leave out other past-life regressions, which I worked on yesterday and last night, and you did get to see today.