Florida State Legislature

Florida An Outlier, Likely To Continue To Defy Common Decency By Government Leaders

This author and blogger lives in the “Sunshine” State, Florida, and has lived in South Florida since the summer of 1989.

Sadly, Florida has some of the most horrendous political leaders imaginable, with the state legislature heavily Republican, and promoting right wing extremism in every way they can.

The Governor, Ron DeSantis, has no concern about public health in the midst of the COVID 19 Pandemic.

The former Governor, now a US Senator, Rick Scott, has a record of Medicare fraud, but was allowed to run for public office after paying a fine, rather than serve time in prison, and he has a steel heart.

The other Senator, Marco Rubio, is a mediocre Senator and not very bright, although less harmful than DeSantis and Scott.

Only in South Florida do Democrats have much impact, other than in selected Congressional districts in the central part of the state.

And Florida is the home of the disgraced former President, Donald Trump, who continues to divide the nation, and perpetrate a big lie that he won the Presidential Election Of 2020, and he has blood on his hands by having incited the US Capitol Insurrection on January 6, 2021.

Florida desperately needs a renaissance in state government and in national representation, as it is an outlier defying common decency, and is likely to see all three statewide officials competing for President in 2024, unless Trump is somehow able to poison the nation again.

In any case, right now, all three Florida leaders are competing with many others for Trump’s endorsement and support, so common decency is not present in Florida Government in 2021.

Florida Governor Rick Scott And Education Goals: War On The Social Sciences And Humanities!

Florida Governor Rick Scott and other Republicans in the state legislature have declared “war” on the Social Sciences and Humanities areas of the college curriculum, claiming that they wish to emphasize areas of knowledge, including science and technology majors, which are easier fields to promote job growth in the state.

Since when is it the role of politicians to dictate fields of study for students, as if that is the only purpose of education and learning? Scott’s suggestion to work against anthropology as a major, and other legislators’ attempts to undermine psychology and political science fields, is only the beginning of the promotion of mind control by people who do not give a damn about the purposes of higher education!

One should pursue his or her dreams and interests in colleges and universities, as the purpose of education is to open up one’s mind to new ideas, and the ultimate reality is that, as Steve Jobs said in his Stanford University commencement speech in 2005, that pursuit of one’s interests has a role in making one happy, that one must love what he or she does to be productive!

Times may be difficult now, but to work to destroy or de-emphasize whole fields of learning is anti intellectual and anti education to the extreme! Not everyone is motivated to go into the areas of science or technology, and society needs a mix of people with all kinds of interests and passions!

Education is not just based on job needs, and politicians should not have the power or authority to dictate budget cuts, which should be left to faculty and administrators at the institutions!

Universities that would gut whole programs because of the issue of money or immediate employment would be a travesty of the whole concept of education, which is to prepare for LIFE, not just employment!

Florida And Its Teachers And College Professors: Total Destruction Of Education In The Name Of Governor Rick Scott And The Republican State Legislature!

The state of Florida has always had problems with providing its children and college students with a decent, world class education.

Always unwilling to have a state income tax and desirous of avoiding any tax they can avoid, the state legislature and its Republican Governors since 1999 have bled the public school system dry and refused to recognize that its students, as a result, score terribly on competitive exams in all fields of knowledge, as compared to many states in the rest of the country.

Students too often come to college without any general knowledge base, and are ill prepared to do college work, and the economy offers mostly low wage employment, and promotes an anti labor bias, priding itself on being a “right to work” state, meaning exploitation of workers!

With Florida near the bottom in most statistics educationally, Governor Rick Scott now wishes to bleed over $3 billion out of the state education budget, while providing further tax cuts to the wealthy and the corporate and business world, and therefore, is doing everything possible to punish educators, along with other public servants, including police officers, fire fighters, nurses, social workers, librarians, sanitation workers, prison guards and others.

Regarding education, Scott and his party are working to end tenure, and to use testing that will cost money, that does not exist in the education system, to eliminate experienced teachers whose students do not perform well on state mandated tests, failing to understand that how a student performs is much more based on his or her work habits and parental influences than being in a classroom for a few hours per day!

Also, all state workers will have to take a pay cut, after years of low wages and inadequate pay increases, to pay for their Florida Retirement System pension, plus greater costs for their medical benefits. Sick Leave not used will be forfeited, instead of being paid out at retirement.

And the worst thing of all, particularly involving education, is that after July 1, 2011, when a teacher or professor retires, he or she will NEVER be able to be employed part time at any educational institution covered by the Florida Retirement System, instead of the earlier one month and then one year limitation!

This draconian cut off of talented educators from any ability to teach part time is not only denying talented retirees the opportunity to contribute their skills to the younger generation, and locking them into an inability to pursue their profession and improve their economic status by being able to earn part time income!

It will also create a major educational crisis within a short period, as there will be a rapid depletion of available adjunct professors and teachers, who are particularly the lifeblood of any educational institution at the college and university level!

With growing enrollments expected to continue, how will college administrators and public school administrators be able to staff classrooms and provide education if the pool of available talent is so limited by forced retirement from any involvement with the educational system, simply because one wishes to retire from full time?

This is stupid, asinine policy, which will contribute to the further deterioration of Florida educationally, and will have a tragic economic effect on the future of the Sunshine State, and this all to benefit a small elite of wealthy and business people who could not give a damn about the future of anything other than their own greedy, selfish aggrandizement!