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NUMBER 29 - MARCH 1, 2019
A CRESPOGRAM RANT - THE MIAMI CITY COMMISSION IS SUFFERING FROM A VIRULANT STRAIN OF MAD POLITICAN'S DISEASE, AND THERE IS NO REASON TO EXPECT THAT ANY OF THESE INDIVIDUALS WILL TAKE THEIR MEDICINE OR GET BETTER, WHICH DOESN'T BODE WELL FOR THE RESIDENTS OF THE CITY
There were no heros or Knights in Shining Armor the morning after what was certainly the craziest city commission meeting I've witnessed in the last 10 years of writing about this revolving collection of self-serving, self-dealing devious grifters and morons that make up the Miami City Commission.
The shit show, or shit shows that have occurred in recent weeks has long been coming, and now looking back I am sure that some people will start wondering why it took so long for a meeting like yesterday's to occur.
For years, the Miami City Commission behaved like an unbalanced wheel that wobbled, but wasn't so out of balance as to start spinning out of control.
That all changed with the arrival of Commissioners Carollo and Reyes. These two guys, separately and together proved to be too much for the unbalanced wheel to accomodate, and over the last year, and especially starting late last year, and coming forward to this year each of them for their own reasons started jumping up and down on the wheel in ways that forced it to start spinning uncontrollably.
That doesn't mean that all of their jumping wasn't unwarranted, or unjustified, although in Carollo's case, this madman is clearly and unequivocally a one man wrecking crew to good government, intelligence and reasonableness.
All of this was compounded by a year's worth of weak kneed accommodating by Commissioner "Sellout" Russell, who from Carollo and Reyes' arrival had become their principal target and punching bag, and who this year, largely by default, was appointed the Chairman of the Commission.
It was a bad choice, made worse by the fact that last year's efforts by Carollo and Reyes had, in artillery terms, only served to bracket Russell in their sites for what many expected would become another year spent ratcheting up their attacks from last year as a way to cripple his reelection efforts.
Weak men become weak leaders, and Russell in the last 2 meetings as the Commission's Chairman demonstrated that not only does he lack the force of personality needed to herd the cats on the Commission, but managed yesterday to fail in even controling the peanut gallery of spectators from clapping at will and turning the commission meeting on occassion into a sideshow.
It was inevitable that when Russell did decide to exert some control as a way to assert his power as Chairman, he would do a bad job of it.
A lot of questionable things occurred at yesterday's meeting, and it will take a few days to review the video of the meeting and seek public records to sort out the wheat from the chafe, but here are 3 topics that I will be looking into, and that I think a lot more people also needs to start looking into and thinking about with a degree of seriousness that heretofore has been missing from the goings on at Miami City Hall.
THREE ISSUES THAT SHOULD MAKE EVERYONE SAY, HMMM
What's the deal with the sudden efforts by major developers seeking to get the City Commission to approve the Special Area Plans (SAP's) for mega developments that seem to be popping up in the Northeast corridor of the city, especially in Little Haiti.
What do these massive plans, starting with the BILLION AND A HALF DOLLAR MAGIC CITY INNOVATION DISTRICT IN LITTLE HAITI really mean for the communities, especially Little Haiti, that will be impacted if these deals are passed by the Commission?
What will they mean for the city as a whole, and what do they mean in terms of sweetheart deals, if not outright bribery and payoffs that might be required to gain approval?
The time has now long passed for serious people in the community to quit acting like the Three Monkeys.
Nobody shows up looking for approval on BILLION DOLLAR deals, whether it's this one, or the Rickenbacker Marina deal, or the Melreese Golf Course deal, or any of a number of very serious BIG DOLLAR deals without raising the question of what are they willing to pay to get their way, and forget the community benefits agreements and the $5,000, $10,0000, $25,000 or even $50,000 donations to a political action committee.
Those are all window dressing. There is more than enough smoke just in the records of who registers to lobby for some of these deals, as well as some of the other backroom deals that are visible just below the surface, or discoverable with a little digging, to realize that if this is what passes for low hanging fruit, then the really nasty shit that has been going on at Miami City Hall for a long, long time means that some of these so-called public servants have secretly become very rich posing as the protectors of the public good!
The 5 day Rule? What is it, and has it ever been used before last night? Yes it has, by none other that Commissioner Frank Carollo.
Was Russell, for all of his faults right to use it to end last night's shit show? We'll take a real look at that, because from a first look, it appears that a little political fuckery was involved in how the changes to the community benefits proposal was introduced and discussed at last night's meeting.
What about the 2 plus hour rope-a-dope over the NCD 2 and NCD 3 that started off the day, and managed to cause it's own rancor among residents and commissioners? Why are these NCD's only designed and considered important for the control of properties in the "West Grove?"
I'll try to look at that too.
But for now, everyone, starting with the US Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, the Governor of Florida, the FBI, the FDLE, and so-called community leaders like the big shots who run the Knight Foundation, the Miami Chamber of Commerce, and a whole list of other self-described "leaders" in Miami need to seriously stop pretending that the crazy shit that is going on inside Miami City Hall is either acceptable, or that it can continue to go on without seme serious intervention, if not criminal investigations to put an end to what is clearly a clusterfuck that makes my usual sign-off of, It's Miami, Bitches! an understatement.
In short, to apply a metaphor that is often used, but never as relevant as it is in this instance, the inmates have really gotten control of the institution, and somebody's got to come in and take it away from them before they do serious, and perhaps permanent damage!