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Preview: South of the Suwannee

South of the Suwannee

Society, history and politics from a South Florida perspective.

Updated: 2018-03-05T10:39:56.920-05:00


Perverse Justice


A commenter at the Volokh Conspiracy nails it:In the federal system, court loads are managed by plea bargaining. People, who are actually guilty, are undercharged in exchange for being cooperative with expedited procedures. If someone insists on a trial . . . then they are overcharged, with the full consequence in sentencing.

Sound and Fury


The Language Log on Sarah Palin:I think being so utterly unable to explain what one wants to say is truly and reasonably regarded as a defect in one's qualifications for office — partly because being so inept at talking in a controlled and sensible way strongly suggests that there was no sensible thought back there, and partly because even if there were sensible thoughts back there somewhere, a

Family Values


President-elect Obama's possible selection of Eric Holder to be Attorney General brings this Miami Herald headline:Obama may tap Elián players for White House rolesThe article notes that the appointment was "infuriating some Cuban-American Republicans who haven't forgotten the 6-year-old boy seized in Miami and sent back to the communist regime." It fails to mention, however, that he was sent

An Alternative Plan


It probably is too late for it to work, but instead of giving the US automakers 25 billion dollars to keep them going, why not provide a significant tax credit to those who purchase a new car from the Big 3?An average credit of $2500 would encourage the purchase of up to 100,000 automobiles. The credit could be on a sliding scale - the better the gas mileage, the larger the credit.As I mentioned

Time Moves On


For my two grandfathers, it was John F. Kennedy.For my father it was Jimmy Carter.And for me, it is Barak Obama.I'm referring, of course, to the point in our lives when we were finally older than the president.



Former Sun-Sentinel political columnist Buddy Nevins has started a blog about Broward County politics -- so far it's mostly all about the Lamberti-Israel race for Sheriff.

The Night they Drove Old Dixie Down


The last non-Southern Democrat elected president was John F. Kennedy in 1960.In 1960, the overwhelming number of schools in the southern states were segregated, as were its universities. The freedom riders had not yet begun their bus rides into the deep South, Martin Luther King had not made his "I Have a Dream" speech, the poll tax had not been abolished, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the

Happy Days are Here Again!


I first voted in the 1968 presidential election. This will be the fourth one in which I voted for the winning candidate, but none were more satisfying nor gave me more hope for the future than did the victory of Barak Obama.That Obama carried Florida was the icing on the cake.

Clint Would Agree


Jonah Goldberg: "Truth be told I am not trying to say anything too profound."Harry Callahan: "A man's got to know his limitations."

We Can Only Hope


Jed Lewison at Daily Kos:Republicans may not realize it yet, but it's not just John McCain who is going down in this election. It's also guys like Matt Drudge and propaganda machines like FOX News. They may maintain their influence within the shrinking world of the conservative right wing, but the rest of America has said goodbye and good riddance to their lies and distortions.

I'm Still Holding My Breath


FiveThirtyEight: "McCain's chances of victory are estimated at 1.9 percent, their lowest total of the year."

Crystal Balls


The Huffington Post has a list of pundits' predictions.The Weekly Standard's Fred Barnes thinks Obama will fall short, gathering only 252 electoral votes. No one else has Obama winning less than 311.James Carville is the only one on the list who believes the Democrats will hold 60 Senate seats after the election.

McCain on SNL


James Fallows:. . . no candidate who thought he had a prayer of winning would have appeared on this show.



Spent today canvassing for Obama in a lower middle class neighborhood in Pompano Beach. Nobody home behind about half the doors we knocked on, but of those who responded, Obama was the voters' choice by a ration of about 16:1.

Where's Joe?


Brian Schaffner is not surprised that the McCain's use of "Joe the Plumber" is not gaining traction:First, critiques of income redistribution and higher taxes for those in the top income brackets appear to mostly resonate with Republicans (who are already supporting McCain) and they have far less appeal for independents. Second, the argument also fails because the symbol doesn't fit the argument

Watch out for that Weakling


James Wolcott:It's one of the richer ironies of this election season that the conservative bloggers disparage Obama as a phony lightweight, a glib opportunist, a suave vessel of empty eloquence, yet endow him with the sinister strength to bend America to his socialist will and fog men's minds.



Shorter David Broder: It's not McCain's fault.

Eight Reasons for Hope


I'll be worried until the final results are in, but the Chicago Tribune's Eric Zorn makes a convincing case for an Obama victory.

Not Good


Bob Norman discovers problems in the Broward County Supervisor of Elections office.Lesson: If you have registered, don't take anyone's word that you are not eligible to vote.

Miami Being Miami


John McCain came to Miami today to charge up his supporters: After the rally, we witnessed a near-street riot involving the exiting McCain crowd and two Cuban-American Obama supporters. Tony Garcia, 63, and Raul Sorando, 31, were suddenly surrounded by an angry mob. There is a moment in a crowd when something goes from mere yelling to a feeling of danger, and that's what we witnessed. As

Finish the Game


As a Florida Gator football fan for the past, oh, forty-five years, I know a little bit about false confidence. I remember the 2003 game against the Miami Hurricanes, where the Gators were up by 23 points at half-time, only to lose the game 38-33.So there are no safe leads, in football or in politics.That's why I'm volunteering to make phone calls to help make sure that we get the voters to the

Heart of the Matter


Anyone who has read the comments on right-wing blogs can see the truth of the following analysis:Part of what has been wrong with the GOP is that its rank-and-file members take their political advice and insights from radio entertainers who seem to understand little about political reality and even less about policy, and who substitute bluster for understanding. When they are confronted with an

Proof Positive


Perhaps the most telling indication of an Obama victory:Simple rule: if you're a 72 year-old Presidential nominee, and MATLOCK ENDORSES THE OTHER GUY, it's time to pack it in.Commenter responding to a Volokh Conspiracy post on Ron Howard and Andy Griffith endorsing Barak Obama.

If We Can't Get Him on the Issues . . .


Taking the high road, Jonah Goldberg expresses his admiration for one of his reader's ideas:If the donations list is published we could always do a bunch of donations as William Ayers, Jeremiah Wright etc. and then publicize that Obama's taking donations from these indidividuals [sic].The only way to avoid the connection is to admit that they allow anonymous donation which, if I understand

Jolly Old St. Nick


The Onion could not have written a better parody of the right-wing desperation that's setting in about now: the National Review's Jim Geraghty touts the Nickelodeon Kids' Poll as a sign that things just might not be as bad as they seem for McCain.