Friday, April 17, 2015

Quote: Dorothy L. Sayers in "The Lost Tools of Learning"

“Has it ever struck you as odd, or unfortunate, that today, when the proportion of literacy is higher than it has ever been, people should have become susceptible to the influence of advertisement and mass propaganda to an extent hitherto unheard of and unimagined?”
Dorothy L. Sayers (1893–1957), English poet, playwright, essayist, and Christian humanist.

Dorothy Sayers passed in 1957. 

Dorothy Sayers would be spectacularly disappointed. Not much has changed. 

Issue 13 of Margaret Menge's tabloid and it's still free!

All the noise about people having to pay for her tabloid this week was just that, noise. Apparently she's no longer able to drop the paper at houses in neighborhoods anymore; now she, or one of her minions, is tasked with leaving piles at places like Publix and other downtown establishments alongside real newspapers like the Sun Sentinel and The Palm Beach Post. Faux gravitas.

For those wondering why Ms. Menge is publishing her own paper it's because no respectable news organization will hire her; so start your own paper! Problem solved. However, the real problem still exists: Ms. Menge is a terrible reporter and an even worse editor. But she is a very good writer though. A good writer does not mean that person can be a reporter; reporting on events is a talent. A skill that businesses like The Palm Beach Post pay a lot of money for. Whether it's intentional or not she manipulates headlines, mixes fact with opinion, loaded language, and uses clever name drops and quotes. You can see how someone who didn't know the facts would fall for it.

Take for example this gem:
This is very clever. Note the title: "City Demolishing Boarded-Up Buildings". Note the picture; this is Mr. Greg Rice's property that was demolished on April 10th. If you didn't take the time to read the article you would conclude what? The City demolished Mr. Rice's property. Right? Wrong. 

Mr. Rice paid for this himself. 

Here are the first five words by Ms. Menge: "A historic Lucerne Avenue building". The building is on Lucerne Ave: TRUE. The building is historic: FALSE. The building that was demolished was old. It was not historic. There is a very big difference. Some old man in Atlantis reminiscing false memories of who/what/when 'back in the day' has no place in the present. Many city commissions, going back decades, had their priorities and saving buildings west of Dixie wasn't among them. Now people like City Manager Michael Bornstein and Mayor Pam Triolo are tasked with cleaning up the mess left by former mayors and commissions. Dennis Dorsey is one of those mayors. And so was former Commissioner JoAnn Golden. And Cara Jennings. Need I go on?

The silver lining is ever since Ms. Menge's Vol. 1/Issue 1 in January of this year my blog traffic is off the charts. Always look for the good in everything!

There's a lot of material in this week's paper by Ms. Menge. It's a target-rich environment so I'll have to be selective. Stay tuned and as always, thank you for visiting my blog.

Oh, hold on! Here's one more thing:


The 'facts' above will be the subject of a future post. "Deputy editor of the Miami Herald-owned paper there." Come now, Margaret. Just a SLIGHT exaggeration?

Royal Park (Middle) Bridge to Palm Beach

The Royal Park (Middle) Bridge will have the outside lane closed in each direction, intermittently, 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m., Tuesday, April 21, through Thursday, April 23, for bridge repairs.

Sobering article by Emily Badger at the Wonkblog (a blog at The Washington Post)

The blog post is titled, "Why one-way streets are the absolute worst". Here's an excerpt with emphasis in red:
     In John Gilderbloom's experience, the notorious streets are invariably the one-way streets. These are the streets lined with foreclosed homes and empty storefronts, the streets that look neglected and feel unsafe, the streets where you might find drug dealers at night.
     "Sociologically, the way one-way streets work," he says, "[is that] if there are two or more lanes, a person can just pull over and make a deal, while other traffic can easily pass them by."
     It's also easier on a high-speed one-way road to keep an eye out for police or flee from the scene of a crime. At least, this is the pattern Gilderbloom, director of the Center for Sustainable Urban Neighborhoods at the University of Louisville, has observed in San Francisco, in Los Angeles, in Houston and Washington where streets that once flowed both directions were converted in the 1950s and '60s into fast-moving one-way thoroughfares to help cars speed through town. The places where this happened, Gilderbloom noticed, deteriorated.
     "I thought about that for a long time," he says. "But we didn’t have much empirical data on it."
     Where he lives now in Louisville, he and fellow researchers have begun to prove the curious link between how we engineer roads and what becomes of the neighborhoods around them.
Their research offers a lot more fodder for anyone who doesn't like one-way streets simply because they're baffling to navigate.
You might think, this doesn't have anything to do with the little City of Lake Worth. You would be wrong. Many of the one-way streets in the City used to be two-way and then were converted. Some one-way roads are so wide they accommodate car parking, a bike lane, and a car can easily pass another car in the right-of-way.

There really is no sensible reason for many of our streets to be one-way. One-way streets encourage higher speeds and lowered attention to surroundings by many drivers. Drivers at point 'A' are focused on point 'B', instead of having to slow down and navigate around other cars. One-way streets do not increase pedestrian or bike safety. It sounds intuitive that one-way streets are safer. Research has been debunking this myth.

Lake and Lucerne Avenues used to be two-way streets. Clematis Street in West Palm used to be one-way but was converted back to two-way. That change is thought by many to have contributed to the revitalization of that city. FDOT is slowly, excruciatingly slow, but coming around to that realization. FDOT's mission for years was lowering the time getting from one place to another. That's fine on highways but disastrous for small towns and city's where vehicular speeds are way too high.

Here is the Complete Streets Implementation from FDOT:
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Complete Streets Policy incorporates context-appropriate roadway designs that accommodate users of all ages and abilities, including cyclists, pedestrians, motorists, transit, and freight. FDOT recognizes 21st Century demographics, business practices and development patterns requiring broad focus beyond just the automobile.
This has been a huge debate in the planning world and ever since Jeff Speck's work in West Palm Beach last year. Since then the "Genie is out of the bottle" so to speak.

One last thing, two-way streets are better for the environment. Why? How much gas has your car used driving down a one-way street to reach your destination on another one-way street going in another direction? Think about that for a while.

Lake Worth Municipal Pool: how to increase attendance (Warning: ideas follow; may be upsetting to some)

This article is from Recreation Management: Ideas and Solutions for Recreation, Sports and Fitness Facilities:
     Because splashpads are known to draw a crowd, their location can also help to transform an underperforming recreational area into a hub of social activity, as did the Highland's Park Splash Pad that has since helped to revitalize an existing community park.
     "The splashpad in Cottage Grove has turned a fairly underutilized park into a gathering place for the community," Dockter explained. "On any given day, you'll find hundreds of people of all makes and walks of life enjoying not only the splashpad, but the playground, ball fields, courts, picnicking facilities and trails. Residents are making and or/rekindling connections that may not have existed without this recreational feature."
I've been receiving many emails about municipal pools and how they've been transformed to meet community needs around the nation. Individuals and families simply want more options and the technology is now available. Splashpads are hugely popular; there is one in John Prince Park. Check it out some day.    

Planetizen: More on the Cost of Anti-Growth Policies

This article in Planetizen absolutely nails it. I think most people, to one degree or another, are troubled by the western sprawl in Palm Beach County. Communities are popping up everywhere out west and there's even talk of widening the Florida Turnpike. Why? You can sum it up to market forces, or it's an act of God and leave it at that, or even be thoughtful and consider the public's addiction to the single passenger automobile trip.

The real problem is it's too much trouble building near the coast. Too expensive and an avoidable headache, with multiple barriers including property hazard insurance, aging infrastructure (which could be financed but for the funding of new infrastructure in our western communities), etc. In face of these challenges the home builders and "evil" developers say "Westward Ho!".

Here is an excerpt from the article (not for the faint of heart):

     An upswing in the fortunes of American cities has been widely noted, along with exploding land values in economic centers. As the article notes, "In the 20th century, tumbling transport costs weakened the gravitational pull of the city; in the 21st, the digital revolution has restored it. Knowledge-intensive industries such as technology and finance thrive on the clustering of workers who share ideas and expertise."
     In spite of this, new construction is comparatively scarce. A cocktail of outdated zoning and NIMBYish objections, according to the article, is to blame for blockages in urban land maximization. While acknowledging the political difficulty involved, the article points to a two-pronged solution:
  • City planning decisions should be made at the city level, from top down, to minimize objections from specific localities.
  • Governments should levy higher land taxes, creating an incentive to put land to better (economic) use.
This is going to get some people riled up. However you can't have it both ways like I've demonstrated with Drew Martin and the Loxahatchee Sierra Club's opposition to the Alton (former Briger) Tract (to site one glaring example). The Alton Tract is east of I-95 which is where we should be encouraging people to live. Most reasonable people can agree with that.

The City of Lake Worth, for example, is perfectly poised for added housing: homes, condos, apartments, etc. There are so many buildable lots available in the downtown, and we're a fun, walkable, and bikeable City. But when something gets proposed an opposition machine ramps up which translates "urban land maximization" into acres of 10 story buildings; the unsuspecting public gets those knocks at the door with nicely dressed and pleasant people saying "They're stealing our charm" and "You won't be able to see the sun rise any more" and on and on it goes. 

Sure, you look around the City and you see construction but it is, as the article in Planetizen states, "comparatively scarce." Eight hundred people, it's estimated, are moving to Florida each and every day. And they all want a nice place to call home.

We need to direct investment towards the coast, preferably east of I-95, and alter policies to achieve this. You hear all the time about irresponsible development and developers but somehow groups like the Loxahatchee Sierra Club get a pass and they're never challenged. They should be at the table encouraging coastal development but they're not. Their answer to any development is always "No". That's irresponsible too. 

Does Sea Level Rise Frighten You? Calm Down! (Especially you easily frightened in Lake Worth)

Here is an app that will bring you some comfort. Do you know how many feet above sea level. . .
  • Lake Worth City Hall is? 15.99'
  • South Shores Tavern? 13.1'
  • A house for sale on the 400 Block of North Lakeside? 5.66'
  • St. Andrew's Lutheran Church? 16.27'
  • Too-Jays Deli? 11.51'
So relax and breathe deeply. It's OK, Steve. 

Read this post where Larry the Lenz teaches his good friend Misty Meanor the facts about sea level rise. Larry the Lenz will be back soon. He was injured on special assignment for a story in Palm Beach Gardens. More on that later.
Larry the Lenz (on right) demonstrates to his friend, Misty Meanor, the actual rate of sea level rise using a slice of Kraft Single White American cheese.

[Confirmed by TOB—Top news story in Lake Worth is this post:] Tom McGow: the Lake Worth pool is city's biggest white elephant

According to a source of mine, the post below has generated forty+ anonymous comments on The Other Bloggers (TOB's) unhinged blog. I'll continue to promote this story just to see how close we can get to a hundred anonymous comments.

[WARNING: If you are shocked by new ideas then please go back to what you were doing.]
Synchronized swimmers: Left side (top to bottom), former Commissioner Cara Jennings, former City Manager Susan Stanton, and former Commissioner JoAnn Golden. Right side (top to bottom), former Commissioner Suzanne Mulvehill, former Mayor René Varela, and stud/synchronized swimmer coach/speedo wearing and CURRENT Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell.
The following words are from blogger-extraordinaire Tom McGow in March, 2010. Five years later and the argument continues in Lake Worth (Jane DeCoursey, with all due respect, this will explain why the "fitness" approach will not work):
     There has been a lot of talk about turning Lake Worth’s liabilities back into assets, and the Golf Course is an example of doing just that. However when it comes to the City Swimming Pool at the beach the Commissioners need to take a hard look at the economic realities of our pool and the national trend towards municipal aquatic parks.
     Stand alone “rectangular pools” are a thing of the past and even our pool’s location by the beach is not enough of an attraction to draw people on a regular basis or attract swim meets. Across the nation older municipal pools are being shut down, often replaced by aquatic parks that cater to whole families. No amount of “out of the box marketing” can succeed in bringing people to a facility that is no longer viable in today’s recreation market.
     Swimming lessons and water aerobics can still be held in a smaller pool, and the other features will be attractive to summer camps, handicapped organizations and others to rent. A quick internet search reveals that even public facilities that retain olympic sized pools are installing more family friendly features to cater to a larger customer base and increase revenue.
     With the Casino redesign at hand, now is the time to cast aside the sentimental clamor to patch up our city’s biggest white elephant and plan for a water park that will provide families with what they want and attract enough users to make it self-sustaining. 

Email from Bonnie Fanelli, Classical Christian Academy of the Palm Beaches: Meeting tonight

Received this email from Bonnie Fanelli, got distracted and forgot about it. I apologize. They're having an information meeting tonight and the details are below. I wrote a post about this new school opening in Lake Worth that you can read here. Note that the Classical Christian Academy in Lake Worth is not to be confused with the Lake Worth Classical Academy. With that said here is the information:

Dear Friends of the Classical Christian Academy of the Palm Beaches,

This is just a reminder about our next Information Meeting which will be held April 17th [TONIGHT], 2015 at 7:00 pm. Please feel free to share this email with your family and friends. We are excited about meeting people in the Palm Beach area that are interested in classical Christian education. The meeting will be held at 1401 2nd Avenue North, Lake Worth, Florida 33460.

If you would like to learn more about CCA, please visit: www.ccapb.com or like our page on Facebook. It is always my pleasure to answer any questions you have about CCA or classical Christian education. I hope you will contact me if I can be of help in either of these areas.

Bonnie Fanelli, Founder
Classical Christian Academy of the Palm Beaches
ccapb.com
(561)469-9470

[UPDATE] Remember this paragraph from Palm Beach Post endorsement of Commissioner McVoy?

[UPDATE: I emailed Stacey Singer about the issue below and she hasn't gotten back to me. What made me think about this today was a pull quote in the Post editorial today: "Voters deserve more from those who may govern than careful scripting, edited message". I was sitting down at the time and, yes, I am fine. If you're familiar with what happened you know what I'm referring to. Here is the post from April 5th:]

Stacey Singer of The Palm Beach Post editorial board wrote the endorsement for Commissioner McVoy recommending his re-election in the City of Lake Worth. Here is a paragraph from the endorsement on March 3rd, one week prior to election day:
     For a couple of years, [emphasis added] City Manager Mike [sic] Bornstein has been hosting a private buffet for commissioners before the public meeting. Bornstein insists the meetings are innocent of Sunshine Law violations. That’s probably true, but McVoy has asked the county’s inspector general for an opinion.
Remember now, at no time has this issue of a "private buffet" ever been raised in The Palm Beach Post, neither as a news story nor in the editorial section; or anywhere else for that matter. Not once. If McVoy was so troubled by this "private buffet" why did he wait until February 23rd (15 days prior to election day) to address this issue? On what day did McVoy sit down with the Post editorial board and how soon after his "request for a ruling" from the Office of the Inspector General?
Interesting timing, isn't it? McVoy raises the question before anyone had time to give an answer. And why did Commissioner McVoy compose his "request for a ruling" on Friday, February 20th and not send it until the following Monday at 3:56 p.m. near the conclusion of the business day at the Office of the Inspector General?

Here is the opening paragraph from Stacey Singer's endorsement of McVoy:
     The key issue in Lake Worth’s municipal election seems to be trust, or the lack thereof. The question is, which candidates are best positioned to improve that trust?

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Sneak Peek at Lake Worth tabloid, see it here first!

Now if you see a pile of Marge Mange's tabloids at a news shop you can legally throw them all in the trash. If there are 10 just pay $1.20 and away they go! 18? Then it's $2.18. You get the idea. 

Can't wait to read about that "shocking scene" at the Cultural Plaza! Maybe it's on video? 

Commissioner Andy Amoroso, the CRA, and neighborhood associations want you to. . .

ADD THIS TO YOUR CALENDAR:

[UPDATE] Gumbo Limbo transplanting—today at the Lake Worth Cultural Plaza

[UPDATE: The Lake Worth CRA was also involved in this effort.]

Thanks to Mary Lindsey for sending these photos of the gumbo limbo tree planting that happened around 8:30 a.m. today. Here are some of the people that took part in planning the arrangements.
From left to right: Richard Stowe-Chair of the Lake Worth Tree Board, Marta Edwards-SmartyPlants, Dave McGrew-City Horticulturist, Ted Brownstein-Resident.
Ted Brownstein says the tree's official dedication will be part of the Lake Worth Earth Day activities on Saturday, April 25, 2015. Time and details to be announced soon.

Here are more pictures of the action and equipment involved.



OUR NEW TREE!
This just in from Joan Oliva:
Good Morning!
I wanted each of you to know that the new Gumbo Limbo is being installed in the Cultural Plaza this morning. Thanks in part to a donation of $1000 by the CRA. We use this great outdoor space for many of our events and thought it was important to participate in this activity. The dedication for the tree will take place next Saturday at the Earth Day celebration 10am-6pm, April 25th.  The event is free!
Have a great day!
Joan

Joan C. Oliva
Executive Director
Lake Worth Community Redevelopment Agency
A big Thank You to the CRA and everyone involved in this wonderful effort.  

As promised . . . following up on Andrew Marra's news on rejected charter school: the Lake Worth Classical Academy

First, congratulations to the new school opening soon in the City of Lake Worth, the Classical Christian Academy (CCA). I've been in contact with Bonnie Fanelli and helped promote one of their meetings last month. What's so special about this school is their principled stance, regardless of anyone's personal views on school and religion. They are not seeking charter school status and relying on taxpayer dollars to educate children; tax dollars come with strings and consequences. This sort of effort is gaining traction around the country and was recently an article in the venerable New York Times.

Also, today's edition of The Lake Worth Herald has an article on the CCA. Here is an excerpt:
The Classical Christian Academy of the Palm Beaches located at 128 North C Street will be opening August of 2015 with kindergarten through fifth grade. The school will be using the facilities of Lake Worth First Church of the Nazarene, but will be operating as an independent non-denominational private school. [emphasis added] There are around 169 private schools in the county. This school is distinctly different because it is the only classical Christian school in the county.
This effort by CCA stands in contrast to another effort to start a school teaching the classics called the Lake Worth Classical Academy (LWCA). The LWCA went the route of becoming a charter school and that idea failed. Here is what Andrew Marra reported in The Palm Beach Post:
     Also Wednesday, the Board of Education upheld the school board’s decision to reject another charter school: Lake Worth Classical Academy [emphasis added], which proposed to teacher Latin and Greek language and literary classics.
     The school board had determined the school’s plan was not financially viable, in part because it depended on winning private grants and donations. The school’s managers appealed, but the board of education unanimously vote to reject the appeal.
Most everyone familiar with this issue knows the proposed LWCA is the brainchild of Ms. Margaret Menge. She writes this in August of last year:
     The charter application is in and we are swiftly moving forward with plans for the Lake Worth Classical Academy.
     There's a lot to be done. But I remain undaunted. I am willing to do whatever it takes to establish this model of excellence in the Lake Worth community. Are we returning to an "old-style" of education? Well, yes. In a way. We are going to reintroduce the rigor, the in-depth study of history and the high standards that were hallmarks of public education in America until around the 1940s.
It would be interesting to know what Ms. Menge believes happened in the 1940's to the public school systems around the country. And the irony isn't lost that she's asking for tax dollars to teach her own version of "high standards". Ever since January 16th of this year, starting with Vol. 1/Issue 1 of her tabloid, the people of Lake Worth have been regaled by her 'high standards'—her fascination with suicide and a complete lack of understanding of a government processto name just two. Trust me when I say there are many other examples.

If Ms. Menge, or anyone for that matter, had instead proposed a charter school to teach Guatemalan adults how to speak English or immigrants how to assimilate into our culture she/they would have had broad support in our community, myself included. Maybe someone can start that debate in the City of Lake Worth.

The opening soon of the Lake Worth Classical Christian Academy demonstrates there is much support for this type of instruction for children. If you have an interest in this or would like to help them out I'm sure they could use volunteers and most certainly they'll need money too. Here is their address and phone number:

128 North C Street
Lake Worth, FL 33460
(561) 469-9470

If I receive any news from the CCA will pass it along and will certainly try to attend their grand opening in August.

Good luck and welcome to the City of Lake Worth!

NSFW*: Hillary Clinton To Nation: ‘Do Not #### This Up For Me’

*NSFW = Not Safe For Work

Warning: vulgarity and foul language.

Do not read if you are easily offended. Do not share with young children or known Progressives.

You've been warned:

Here is the link to story at America's Finest News Service (AFNS).

Bachmann: God Punishing US With 'Economic Disasters, Natural Disasters' Due To Obama Presidency (NOT A JOKE)

More from the file, "You Can't Make This Stuff Up". Can you spare two minutes? Listen to Michelle Bachmann on the End Times.

Here is text from the article:
Former Rep. Michele Bachmann appeared on the End Times broadcast “Understanding the Times with Jan Markell” over the weekend, where she claimed that America is facing the wrath of God in the form of “natural disasters” because of President Obama’s Mideast policy. Later in the program, Bachmann said that Obama has thrown the world into the End Times. 
Heavy sigh.

Tony Doris: Put your kids in a giant colon for a great learning experience

After cleaning up my computer coughing up my last sip of coffee. . .

Tony Doris' article is about this interesting exhibit:
     The South Florida Science Center and Aquarium invites the public to “Eww! What’s Eating You?,” on Sunday, May 3, a “parade of parasites, including preserved and live specimens – specifically those that enjoy feasting on humans.”
IF YOU GO (no pun intended):
What’s Eating You? admission to the Science Center is $15.00 for adults, $11.00 for children ages 3 to 12, and $13.00 for seniors over the age of 60. Children under 3 and Science Center members are free.

What's all that smoke out west? Watch this video

David Fleshler at the Sun Sentinel has an excellent news story on the controlled burns going on this week. His article includes a video of Serena Rinker, the spokeswoman for the Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge, who explains why this action is necessary. From the text of the story:
     Smoke will rise over the Everglades of western Palm Beach County Wednesday and Thursday, as wildlife managers begin burning 12,000 acres of freshwater marsh to improve wildlife habitat and reduce the risk of future fires.
     The Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge, which runs west of U.S. 441 from Boca Raton to Wellington, plans to conduct the burns across an arc of wetlands running from west of Delray Beach to west of Lake Worth, along the canal running north and south near the refuge's border.

CBS12/WPEC and the Lake Worth "Beach": a primer on how to spin The News

[Singling out Lauren Hills isn't my goal here. The terrible reporting at CBS12, especially concerning the City of Lake Worth, is legendary at WPEC. Not to say there aren't professionals there; Chuck Weber (for example) is an excellent TV news reporter. However. . .

This particular story (below) by WPEC appeared as a news segment only a few days before our municipal elections here in Lake Worth. Lauren Hills refers to a "Backroom" meeting which was anything but. Why am I re-posting a blog post from early last month? I think it's important to remember. Here is the original blog post from March 6th:]

The title of the story by Lauren Hills at CBS12/WPEC uses the word: "Backroom". Why isn't the title only: "Lake Worth Residents Concerned Over Beach Development Proposals"? 

Here is the definition of "backroom" in Dictionary.com
a place where powerful or influential persons, especially politicians, meet to plan secretly or from which they exercise control in an indirect manner
Lauren Hills refers to a meeting by neighbors of the Gulfstream Hotel with the new owners. Here is a letter from a witness who was at that meeting:
If you're looking for facts and professional journalism, especially about important topics like the Lake Worth Beach/Casino, you really need to read the work by people such as Alexandra Clough and Eliot Kleinberg at the Palm Beach Post. If you don't subscribe then maybe you should. 

If you're a big fan of TV news (of which I am not), Channel 5/WPTV's Brian Entin recently did a very fair and accurate story on the Beach/Casino story

Back to the story by Lauren Hills. THE REASON WHY THIS STORY IS A STORY, SHE NEVER MENTIONS IN HER STORY. Our Casino/Beach complex is hemorrhaging money. The business plan has failed and it's up to our current city commission to fix it. 

As far as the "secrecy" Lauren Hills repeatedly refers to? Commissioner McVoy voted to keep the process a secret; it was a unanimous vote:
Lauren Hills didn't mention this either.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Dorothy L. Sayers: English poet, playwright, essayist, and Christian humanist (1893–1957)

“I entirely agree that a historian ought to be precise in detail; but unless you take all the characters and circumstances into account, you are reckoning without the facts. The proportions and relations of things are just as much facts as the things themselves.”

[CORRECTION] Breaking News: Andrew Marra at Post on Lake Worth Classical Christian Academy

[CORRECTION: The charter school rejected is called the "Lake Worth Classical Academy", not the "Lake Worth Classical Christian Academy".]

Andrew Marra in story out tomorrow reports Margaret Menge's proposed charter school, the Classical Christian Academy, has been rejected unanimously by the Florida Board of Education!

Check back tomorrow for more on this tomorrow.

Again, Margaret Menge's charter school proposal is REJECTED.

Finding Commissioner Maier

Lake Worth Commissioner Ryan Maier was sworn in on March 16th, a month ago. He was invited to attend his neighborhood association meeting on Monday, April 13th. He was a no-show, no-call for the South Palm Park neighborhood meeting. However, former Commissioner John Szerdi was there at the meeting.

The next day, Tuesday, April 14th, was the Lake Worth Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast sponsored by the City. He was a no-show at that event also.

His lying about serving on the Lake Worth Sister City board is well documented and we'll revisit that at a later time.

Was he out of town? Otherwise busy with other things? Those at the South Palm Park neighborhood meeting would like to know. And so would many volunteers at the Appreciation Breakfast on Tuesday.

Being an elected official is more than just showing up at commission meetings. On the campaign trail Maier reportedly would show up at people's doors and show a picture of then-Commissioner Szerdi, then quickly ask, "do you know who this is?" Before they could answer he would say something along the lines that no else does either, insinuating that John Szerdi was not doing his job. Mr. Szerdi has always been very involved in the community and he has continued to stay involved; even attending city commission meeting and participating in public comment.

I can see how being in a room full of actively involved volunteers would make Maier uncomfortable, however, our volunteers are crucial to the City's future. Hopefully we'll hear Commissioner Maier acknowledge that sooner than later.

A Celebration of Life for Morag Elizabeth Dick

Saturday, April 25. 3pm Prompt. A Celebration of Life for Morag Elizabeth Dick will be held at the tiki at The Beach Club Lake Worth. It is a casual affair.  Some drinks and snacks will be provided. Please distribute as you feel necessary. I ask for some quiet time for a few days please. Overwhelmed with well wishes. Thank you for all of them. I just need some time. If more details are prudent I will post here when and if needed. Thank you. - Shona

If you would like to leave some remembrances in the comments section, I will be sure to pass them on. Morag was a good friend to many in Lake Worth and always positive about our unique little city.

Politics/tactics explained: How everyday, local government functions such as planning are getting hijacked

[This is the third or fourth time I've re-posted this. The first time I posted this (in early March) within 24 hours the blog traffic was off the charts and was getting emails and phone calls from people wanting to talk about it. What I think struck a chord is it speaks to truth: it only takes a few people with clever tactics to alter public perception. And the other truth is this: even otherwise very intelligent people, people who know what is happening and are involved, can be manipulated to believe something that is untrue. If you have time study up on what's called a meme. A meme is like a virus; instead of an actual virus this is an idea or thought that spreads from one person to another. And once you "catch" the 'virus', like any real sickness, it takes a long time to recover.

So without further ado, here is that op/ed that has gotten so much attention:]

If you live in a small city in south Florida such as Lake Worth (it could be any city) and you've wondered how even the most reasonable and popular projects get thwarted, the excerpt from an op/ed below will explain a lot.

This is a sobering op/ed by Patrick Fox, "Broken Planning: How Opponents Hijacked the Planning Process" [an excerpt with emphasis added]:

     Grassroots movements do not organically spring up to support a project, but opposition groups driven by fear, self-interest and cynicism can take off like wildfire. The proliferation of digital tools like Facebook and Twitter give average people the ability to find like-minded project opponents and to build effective grassroots opposition movements. While project supporters certainly have access to these same tools, they are far less motivated to use them. The process is overwhelmingly dominated by opponents.
     Why should an elected official support a project and subject him or herself to the slings and arrows of angry opponents? Standing with opponents and harnessing their passion and energy is the politically expedient path. Standing with opponents and dramatically pounding your fists in opposition is the right political posture for today's elected official seeking to build a political base and grab headlines.
     Imagine a grocery store is proposed in your community that will redevelop a vacant retail site. The developer is well known and respected and promises major site improvements and community amenities.
     On a Tuesday night, a public hearing is held at Town Hall by the Planning Board or the City Council to get public input prior to voting on the developer's application. Who shows up and makes their voices heard? Not the supporters. While the vast majority of residents may fully support the project and welcome it to their community, the hearing is packed with those who vigorously oppose it.

In the swimming pool don't you wish there were other things to do!

Palm Beach Post: Fueling the Hysteria about the Lake Worth "Beach"

Here's an ill-informed and incorrect "Editor's note":
Editor’s note: The city is weighing a proposal by Hudson Holdings, owner of the historic Gulfstream Hotel, to turn parts of the oceanfront Lake Worth Casino into a members-only beach club.
Wrong. Print a correction.

This 'note' appeared below a Letter to the Editor published in The Palm Beach Post today from Jeanine Murnane who is uninformed also. She writes this:
Leave our Lake Worth Beach alone, real estate salespeople and developers. You’d have only wealthy people enjoying it soon.
Ms. Murnane, nothing is happening with the "Lake Worth Beach".

Here are the TWO titles given to this little gem of a letter:

In the print edition: Lake Worth Beach doesn't need club
In the on-line edition: Keep developers away from the beach

Number 1: Nothing is being considered about the Lake Worth "Beach". The word 'Beach' is being used to confuse the public and is irresponsible.

Number 2: It is my understanding that the city selection committee is considering at least three proposals related to what might happen at the Lake Worth Casino building property and all that will be heard at a public meeting on April 28th at 6 p.m. in the Commission Chambers. There is a recorded history of what has gone on in previous meetings of the selection committee. Other than that, any speculation about what changes will  or won't happen at the Casino building/property is pure speculation.

Verify this information and print a correction.

Religious Right Pundit: Hillary Clinton Too Ugly To Be President

You can't make this stuff up. The website Right Wing Watch has this:
     Don Feder of the World Congress of Families is out today with a column titled “Top Ten Reasons Why Hitlery Will Never Be President,” in which he calls the former secretary of state “a frustrated, middle-aged feminist who's perpetually incensed.”
     Feder, decrying Clinton as an elitist and a radical ideologue, ends his piece by asserting that Clinton will be brought down by “the hideousness factor.”
Here is reason number 10 referenced above:
10. The Hideousness Factor – Lyndon Baines Johnson was the last profoundly ugly candidate to be elected president, and he was a legacy of the martyred JFK. Voters don't want a leader who looks frazzled or frumpy. We're told that Lincoln was too homely to be elected president in an age of television and paparazzi. But Lincoln's homely face had a dignity, a gravitas. If nothing else, we want a face that reassures us, not one that scares us, a la Night of the Living Alinskyites.
Note that Don Feder of the "World Congress of Families" refers to Hillary Clinton as "Hitlery". Charming, isn't it?

"Exploring the Painstaking Restoration of the Venetian Pool" in Coral Gables

This is a pool that won't have any trouble attracting visitors and swimmers alike. You see, unlike the Lake Worth Municipal Pool, it's not a rectangular hole in the ground with water in it. This pool has other things. Cool things. Fun things. This pool doesn't have that 'institutional' vibe . . . a pool at the Lake Worth Beach and you can't see the precious beach from the pool. It is still a lovely and serene place, but does not take advantage of the prime, oceanfront location that it occupies.

Read the following from the Curbed Miami blog and look at all the cool pictures in this photo tour of this spectacular renovation:
Coral Gables' Venetian Pool reopened Saturday March 14th after only the third renovation since its creation in 1923, a restoration and preservation that sought to change as little as possible while giving the venerable pool some tender loving care. Commissioned by George Merrick, who wanted to turn a rock quarry that had been used to build many of the Gables' early houses into a 'Venetian Casino' (in those days a 'casino' was any building used for pleasure or social amusements, sometimes with swimming), artist Denman Fink and architect Phineas Paist created an 820,000 gallon lagoon that would be emptied and refilled every day in the spring and summer seasons by the underground Floridan aquifer, waterfalls, grottoes for swimming, a sandy beach, an island, and of course the casino itself, flanked by two tall lookout towers.
You have to look at the pictures in this photo tour. Absolutely amazing.

Take heed if you're buying or selling a home in Palm Beach County

This appears in the Real Time blog today, here is an excerpt from Kim Miller's article:
     Palm Beach County homes are selling at a faster clip than last year with half of properties snatched up within 60 days of being listed.
     Last year, 40 percent of Palm Beach County homes were purchased within their first two months on the market, according to a study released today by housing research firm Trulia.     Trulia housing economist Ralph McLaughlin said Palm Beach County’s increase in selling times is likely a function of stabilizing prices and a continued strain on supply.
     “If you are selling your house, this is a great thing,” said McLaughlin. “If you are buying a house in Palm Beach County, you’re probably going to have to move a little faster and get your ducks all in a row with financing."

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Mr. Laurence McNamara confirms Mrs. McNamara used offensive language ("N-word") at Lake Worth City Hall

This account appeared in a recently created tabloid published by Margaret Menge (Vol. 1/Issue 12). Considering her background in "community" news facts and calm analysis aren't high on her list of priorities. What's different here is she quotes Mr. McNamara, an eyewitness, on the incident:
     [Delores] Key walked up to Dee [McNamara], according to Laurence McNamara, and asked her to move, telling her the front row was reserved for the candidate's family.
[and later. . .]
     "She [Mrs. McNamara] pointed at her own skin and said, 'Are you calling me a n[----]r?' " Laurence remembers.
     Dolores Key, who is white, took offense.
     "She [Dolores Key] got all bent out of shape," said Laurence, and told Dee about seven times to apologize.
So, there you have it. Confirmation from Mr. McNamara that the incident did indeed occur. Mrs. McNamara's supporters fall into two camps: one is the incident never happened and the other is Mrs. McNamara was exercising her Free Speech. The one camp, "it never happened", has now been debunked. Now on to Mrs. McNamara's use of the 'N-word' and Free Speech: she has every right to use the 'N-word'; whenever or wherever she pleases. (Although I wouldn't encourage her to do this in certain neighborhoods.)

What Mrs. McNamara's supporters fail to grasp are people such as Mr. Parrilla also have the same Free Speech protections as others, including Ms. Menge, who hold those principles in such high regard. Free Speech is a two-way street. At a protest by Mr. Parrilla none other than Margaret Menge showed up to express her displeasure with Free Speech on a public street:
Ms. Menge (on left) angrily confronts Serge Jerome, Jr. at a protest in front of Mrs. McNamara's house.
The irony is people like Ms. Menge, who claims a prestigious career in journalism, wrote the following on Mr. Parrilla's preparation (request for emails) for his protest in front of Mrs. McNamara's house:
     Those emails were dug up by a private citizen, says Mark Parrilla—Himself.
[and. . .]
[Mr. Parrilla] did a public records request for all of the emails Dee McNamara ever sent to the city. And then he started organizing a protest, inviting everyone, via Facebook, to join him in protesting in front of the McNamara's home on North Lakeside Drive.
So? And the point is exactly? Here is more creative writing by Ms. Menge:
     He [Mr. McNamara] said Dee [Mrs. McNamara], a former fashion designer turned real estate agent, lost the listing at 402 North Lakeside Drive due to Parrilla's calling the owners and blasting her as a racist. The McNamaras [sic] have held open houses at the home for months, and spent many hours painting and fixing up the property so that it could be sold. The home was listed for $745,000. 
You can see that property here and the new listing agent.

What Ms. Menge fails to mention is this: Mr. Parrilla contacted Mrs. McNamara's former employer and informed them of Mrs. McNamara's two Facebook pages which have since been deleted. Here is one of those entries:
There are so many more points to make but will end with this: the incident with Mrs. McNamara's use of the 'N-word' occurred on Monday, March 16th. Within hours it was the buzz of the town. However. . .
  • In Vol. 1/Issue 10 (March 20) Ms. Menge writes nothing about the incident
  • In Vol. 1/Issue 11 (March 27) still no mention of the incident
  • The following week she takes the week off "to reflect"
It's not until Vol. 1/Issue 12 (April 10) that she reports on anything concerning the incident: a full 25 days later.

If you wanted to find out the facts about what happened in City Hall on March 16th you had two choices: this blog and The Lake Worth Herald

Dietrich Bonhoeffer: German Lutheran pastor, theologian, anti-Nazi dissident (1906–1945)

“We are not to simply bandage the wounds of victims beneath the wheels of injustice, we are to drive a spoke into the wheel itself.”

Former Mayor and now State Senator Jeff Clemens at Compass' Grand Opening in Lake Worth

You'll find the remarks by then-Lake Worth Mayor Jeff Clemens in 2009 very enlightening. Note when he remarks that no one wanted the building that Compass occupies until Compass expressed an interest in using it: then the community "rallied" to save it from Compass. The building Jeff Clemens said was "a dump". The 'community' didn't rally to save the building from Compass; it was only a handful of malcontents happy to see a city building, one of many, further deteriorate due to neglect.

Jeff Clemens thanks Compass for taking a chance in Lake Worth when so few other organizations would. Compass has never turned their back on Lake Worth although some detractors continue to turn their backs on them; a current detractor of Compass is Ms. Menge. She didn't arrive in Lake Worth until 2011 and knows little or nothing of those events in 2009. She only knows what she's told or what to read. And everyone knows who she listens to. Another detractor of Compass is a newly elected commissioner in the City of Lake Worth. Inexplicably, a gay man himself.

So, without further ado, Jeff Clemens at the Compass Dedication in 2009:

Compass is taking many clever cheap shots of late and true to form they've taken the high road. Compass in the City isn't any one snapshot in time. There is a history, a proud history, of their involvement in the City. Without an understanding of that history the critics of Compass display their ignorance.

This video, yes, is also a snapshot in time. But it's a more accurate snapshot from 2009 than the ignorant beliefs of someone in 2015 who doesn't know that history; and probably doesn't care anyway. I was the one who took the video that day and I'm so happy I did.

Pictures—Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast today at the Lake Worth Casino Building

Picture from second floor of the Casino building (outside the Ballroom).

Darrin Engel (left), Jimmy Zoellner, and The Mary Lindsey.
Mayor Pam Triolo and National Volunteer Week Proclamation.

Volunteer Coordinator Silvina Donaldson (left) and Human Resources Director Germaine English.
City Manager Michael Bornstein with closing remarks.
City volunteers received these: "Certificate of Appreciation". This one for Yours Truly.

"West Palm Beach moves to encourage downtown office construction"

This article by Tony Doris appears in The Palm Beach Post today. What's not clear in the article is if West Palm Beach is still being monitored by some folks in Palm Beach who are very concerned with what's happening in West Palm. Anyhow, it was a unanimous vote to tackle a very serious problem: the lack of Class A office space. From the article:
     The City Commission approved a measure Monday to encourage construction of office towers downtown, to address a shortage of top-flight office space and avoid companies going elsewhere.
     The measure, approved unanimously, is an amendment to the city’s zoning and development regulations that would create an incentive for construction of Class A offices and hotels in what is known as the Quadrille Garden District.
     The city has four such towers, including two at Phillips Point, as well as the Esperante building and CityPlace Tower. City officials say the buildings, with more than 1 million square feet of office space, are virtually fully occupied.
     Because of the dearth of space, the city has lost opportunities to attract corporations.

From AFNS on education: Are children learning enough about whales?

This video is enlightening. So, are the children learning enough about whales?

Florida Squeeze: Patrick Murphy and the Everglades

Kartik Krishnaiyer continues his handwringing over Patrick Murphy's continued successes on the campaign for the U.S. Senate seat. From the story in The Florida Squeeze:

Saturday’s shocking news [emphasis added] that Jeff Atwater will not seek the Republican nomination for the US Senate seat being vacated by Marco Rubio sent shock-waves through Florida politics. As we discussed just a few short days ago, Atwater seemed likely to win any head-to-head race with a Democrat, was perceived as a moderate and drew from a similar geographic base as Congressman Patrick Murphy.
     Atwater’s exit makes Murphy’s prospects for election much brighter. Yesterday, we ran a piece about Murphy’s interest group voting scores from liberal groups including the League of Conservation Voters (LCV). In the interest of fairness and knowing that Murphy has championed environmental causes, I choose to dig a little deeper this morning and found the following:
     The Everglades Coalition gave Murphy their “Distinguished Public Service Award” in 2015.In receiving the award the organization stated the following:
“Since his election to the United States Congress in 2012, Patrick Murphy has quickly proved himself to be an up-and-coming champion for America’s Everglades… Congressman Murphy has worked above and beyond in his service to Floridians and indeed all Americans to reach across party lines and facilitate meaningful progress for the Everglades.”

[Why the attention?] Young border crossers feel leaving Central America for U.S. is the only choice - wptv.com

[Suddenly this post from July 19, 2014 has generated quite a bit on interest. Thousands of hits. Why would that be? The original post follows and the link to WPTV still works:]

Lake Worth coming to help those in need. Click title for link. From the news article:
"From the beginning of time, people have immigrated when their roots at home have failed them," said Jill Skok of Guatemalan Maya Center in Lake Worth.
Skok said she feels the country has plenty of room for the newest wave of young illegal immigrants. She feels all they want is a better life.
 
Alvarenga said all he wants is to go to school and become a doctor.
"To save others lives," said Alvarenga.
Teachers at the Guatemalan Maya Center said what they need the most are volunteers who can come in and help the young children learn English.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Budsies was a buzz-kill: ABC's Shark Tank last Friday

Wow, was this a let-down. A "Lake Worth" business was going to be featured on the Shark Tank! The business is actually located immediately northwest of our Lake Worth Park of Commerce, just outside the City limits. But "it's close enough" as a unhinged woman on Lake Osborne Drive likes to say when she lists crime that actually occurred outside the City to inflate her crime stats.

So it's close enough for me!

And then we learned in The Palm Beach Post that Alex Furmansky, the owner of Budsies, lives in Boynton Beach. That has nothing to do with where the business is located. The business is located in Lake Worth, right?

Now for the buzz-kill: Where do you think Mr. Furmansky said his business is located on the show? A show being watched by millions of people. . .
"Palm Beach, Florida"! Here is the YouTube video of the episode.

It's a bit disappointing. Having the little City of Lake Worth mentioned on national TV would have been a cool thing. And it's certainly nothing to seek counseling over; it's over and done.

Of course, we all wish the best for Mr. Furmansky and his Budsies in the Town of Palm Beach, Florida, 33480.

Suzanne Mulvehill and Susan Stanton IN FULL RETREAT

Former Lake Worth Commissioner Suzanne Mulvehill on Sheriff Bradshaw and PBSO:
"Fabulous. They've exceeded our expectations. The Sheriff has done a fantastic job and it's unquestionable that we want them to stay."
This quote is from May 2011. Mulvehill and former City Manager Susan Stanton were instrumental in the failed effort to kick PBSO out of the City of Lake Worth. They even went so far as to commission a study, a flawed one (the Willdan Study), showing how our City would save money by having our own Lake Worth PD. There used to be a Lake Worth PD; PBSO came into the City because the former LWPD has lost control of the City to the gangs.

I won't give too much away here, but suffice it to say, for now, that many in that failed effort against PBSO are making noises once again.

The video below is the press conference by Mulvehill and Stanton IN FULL RETREAT after the community rallied to keep PBSO in the City of Lake Worth. Enjoy:

[At the 6:15 mark I ask Stanton two questions and she dodges both of them.]

From the Rickie Report: Artisans on the Avenue and five new artists in Lake Worth

Rickie Leiter at The Rickie Report on public reception for five new artists in the little City of Lake Worth this Friday:
Artisans on the Ave offers three colorful showrooms at their well-appointed gallery on [630] Lake Avenue in Lake Worth. On Friday, April 17th, five new artists’ work will be featured. The public is invited to stop in, meet the artists and be amazed at the depth of professional artistry being offered. The Rickie Report shares the details and some sneak peeks. Lake Worth is home to many artists whose work is sold internationally. This is a chance for art lovers to speak with the artists personally and learn about their creative process. There will also be live music and refreshments.
Another wonderful source for information on the Lake Worth art scene is this written by Pari Chang. This blog post continues to be a big hit with my readers. Pari Chang's piece received national attention and created a lot of buzz around the nation.

Support All Aboard Florida with public comment on bond: you can mail it in!

You don't need to go to Tallahassee next week to say you're excited about All Aboard Florida train service here in south Florida. You can do so by mail but hurry up; you don't have much time.

Kim Miller at the Real Time blog has this updated information, the address to send your comment:

Florida Development Finance Corp.
c/o Executive Director Bill Spivey
800 N. Magnolia Ave., Suite 1100
Orlando, FL 32803

West Palm Beach: best tasting tap water in PBC (hurry up & get the ceremony over with!)

A surprising honor for West Palm Beach and a spectacularly quick award ceremony in the middle of the afternoon on a Monday. Here is the story from Victoria Malmer at The Palm Beach Post:
     West Palm Beach has won first place in the "best tasting drinking water" contest by the Florida section of the American Water Works Association.
     An award ceremony is set for 2:15 p.m. today at the plant, at the corner of Australian Avenue and Banyan Boulevard.
     West Palm Beach Public Utilities competed against 18 municipalities. Each one submitted a gallon of water collected less than 24 hours before the taste test. Each sample was tasted at room temperature, to allow for any tastes or odors to be detected more easily.
NBC5/WPTV also has the story and you can see that here.

[UPDATE] Letter from Lake Worth Mayor Pam Triolo on critical issue: replacement of water pipes

[UPDATE: Mayor Pam Triolo's letter (below) takes on added significance today. West Palm Beach won the contest for best tasting water in Palm Beach County. Everyone knows the water in Lake Worth is the best; however the water needs to go through aging pipes on way to the tap.]

April 8, 2015
Open Letter to the Residents of Lake Worth
RE: State Revolving Fund Loan for Replacement of 2 inch Steel Water Distribution Pipes

My Fellow Lake Worth Resident:
     I hope you had a good morning. For most of us, that means taking a shower, getting the kids ready for school, fixing tea or coffee and rushing out the door. When you turn the water faucet, you probably don’t even think about whether water will come out and how it gets there. That is the City’s responsibility, and our team of water utility professionals provide that service proudly. We recognize that safe, clean water is a fundamental service for residents to maintain their quality of life, and we are dedicated to providing that service so you can depend on it.


Read the entire text of the letter here. Also, check out the map included as the third page of the letter. It shows some of the areas where problems exist with these 2" distribution pipes. In fact, one light green circle indicates where my property experienced one of these leaks back in 2012. Water bubbling up near the property line which then became a geyser. The city sent out a crew and it was fixed very quickly. They said then that this was a common occurrence throughout the city. Some stretches of pipe have more repairs than what remains of the original pipe!

Upcoming Meetings:
  • Tuesday, April 14th at 6 p.m.: Loan Workshop Discussion at City Hall
  • Tuesday, May 5th at 6 p.m.: Resolution Consideration at City Hall

Pat Robertson on Hillary Clinton's presidential bid: Huh? What? Whah?

Delray Vagrancy Law from 1911. What if this were enforced today?

Pompano eyes $19 million beach parking garage

One south Florida community is not afraid at looking for imaginative options for beach parking. Check out this design being considered by Pompano Beach. Click title for link for the Sun-Sentinel story.

Pew Research: Reflecting a racial shift, 78 counties turned majority-minority since 2000

Of the 78 counties in the U.S. that went from majority white to majority-minority four of them are in Florida: Osceola, Broward, Orange, and Hardee. Simplified, the white population fell below 50%. Rockdale County in Georgia led the way with a 34.9% shift. Here is an excerpt:
     In the United States as a whole, the white share of the population is declining as Hispanic, Asian and black populations grow. But the shift to a more diverse nation is happening more quickly in some places than in others. [emphasis added]
     From 2000 to 2013, 78 counties in 19 states, from California to Kansas to North Carolina, flipped from majority white to counties where no single racial or ethnic group is a majority, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of Census Bureau data. (Our analysis includes only counties with a minimum population of 10,000 in 2013.)
     Overall, 266 of these 2,440 counties are less than half white. However, many are in urban areas that together account for about one-third (31%) of the nation’s population, despite making up just 11% of U.S. counties with a minimum population of 10,000. These counties are concentrated in California, the South and the East Coast, bypassing much of the country’s middle section.

Why the City of Lake Worth needs a hotel downtown

This is what you see when you go to the Lake Worth VisitFlorida website:
Note that VisitFlorida is the most visited site in the world for those considering a trip to Florida. Along with two B&B's the Gulfstream Hotel is listed (which is not open for business as yet), and two hotels that are not in the City. 

Also listed as a place for visitors to stay is John Prince Park which is also not in the City of Lake Worth (and also not a hotel). 

And South Palm Suites is on the list for visitors to consider. Just one problem: that hotel doesn't exist any longer; it's now a sober house. 

Advertise & promote in Lake Worth: the 2015–2016 NAPC Neighborhood Guide

The City of Lake Worth Neighborhood Association Presidents Council (NAPC) is now accepting ads for our new expanded 20152016 Edition of the NAPC Neighborhood Guide. The New GuideBooks will debut at the 4th of July Raft Race Celebration and will be available at City Hall, The Lake Worth Library, the Utilities Customer Service office, the Visitor Information Center and always on the NAPC "Front Porch" at Evening on the Avenue events and at Neighborhood Association meetings throughout the city and throughout the year.

Email or call Mary at (561) 585-6035.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Shocking: Don't waste time teaching a child to swim. Even in a coastal Florida city!

Jane DeCoursey, former Aquatic Facility Operator and former lifeguard/water safety instructor at the Lake Worth Pool, wrote this in a FREE tabloid dated April 10th, 2015:

"[S]wimming should be unattainable for any child in Lake Worth."


Shocking. Absolutely shocking. I am SHOCKED and SHOCKED on top of being SHOCKED. How could something so terrible be written, even in an ALWAYS FREE tabloid? Have it on good authority this tabloid makes a wonderful bird cage lining. 

Are you SHOCKED? I bet most people are SHOCKED. I am SHOCKED. I wrote that already but was too SHOCKED to remember. Now I remember. It's a little fuzzy because I am in a SHOCKED state. Ever since Friday I'VE BEEN SHOCKED!

Is there a rule on how many SHOCKS can appear on the front page of a tabloid?

It's Divine Mercy Sunday: Pray for Pastor Mike Olive & his flock

This is a special day: it's Divine Mercy Sunday.

Please, say a short prayer for Pastor Mike Olive and the Common Ground (no 's') Church.

Pastor Olive has given the City of Lake Worth an undeserved black eye on the national stage. Everyone should pray he understands the errors he's made and atones: he needs to ask forgiveness for the damage he's done to our fine City.

Innocent people have paid a price for his antics. This is not only unfair, it's un-Christian:





The Cottages of Lake Worth

The Cottages of Lake Worth had their highly successful wine and cheese event last night. The attendance was spectacular. You'll be hearing some news soon about the Cottages of Lake Worth so stay tuned. Below is an interview with I did with WBZT's Allan Mason some time back explaining the importance of our cottages, some history, and the value this effort has for the City going forward. Enjoy.

Radical environmentalist/anarchist encourages patience: rebellion is on the way

In the Anarchist News on April 2nd, Mr. Peter "Panagioti" Tsolkas had his treatise published titled, "No System but the Ecosystem: Earth First! and Anarchism by Panagioti Tsolkas". It's a laborious read; however, here and there are some very interesting elements such as his thoughts on transgenderism.

Below is more from Mr. Tsolkas' treatise (with emphasis in red):
     The skills, experience and culture of groups such as EF!, who straddle the line of aboveground and underground action, can play a significant part in creating contexts where things like anti-industrial blockades and office occupations occur in tandem with generalized uprisings, providing inspiration and social space for militant attacks and strategic sabotage to also take place.
     It’s not exactly a new formula for subverting society. And contrary to common sentiment among cynical US anarchists, it’s not something that only happens outside the US. That is illustrated by a 2013 document leaked by the FBI, Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) and Pennsylvania State Police. In the document, a presentation intended to profile groups seen as threats to fracking companies, the JTTF creates a timeline of regional opposition to fracking in which several EF! blockades and tree sits are interspersed with a drive-by shooting and multiple alleged attempts at incendiary device attacks on fracking sites, between July 2012 and May 2013.
     The future of ecological resistance is not something that needs an elaborate blueprint, rigid structure or dizzying intellectual dogma.
[and later. . .]
     In short, we need to continue doing much of what we’ve been doing. We have the basic elements for fomenting ecological rebellion. It’s the scale of our opposition that is lacking. As we’ve been seeing in recent uprisings around the world that can all change very quickly.
Mr. Tsolkas' reference to "dizzying intellectual dogma" is a criticism of Derrick Jensen, Lierre Keith, and their organization called Deep Green Resistance. The reason he resists 'intellectual dogma' may be due to this, "The author [Mr. Tsolkas] has no credentials in academia. On the contrary, he doesn’t have a High School diploma."

He also doesn't define "militant attacks and strategic sabotage". That's left to the imagination of the reader. However it's important to point out that EarthFirst! uses the "horizontal" organizational model which isn't an organizational model at all because there are no leaders and there are no followers. If there is an act of sabotage by a member (or members) of EarthFirst! then Mr. Tsolkas is blameless and not complicit in any way if such as action occurs.

Doubtless he'll rejoice for providing the inspiration though. Let's just hope no one gets hurt or killed in the process, including the saboteur(s) who've been inspired by the words of Mr. Tsolkas.