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The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today's winner is the Sun-Sentinel editorial board. They get the award for their following endorsement for the mayor of Hollywood Florida.

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel Editorial Board recommends they re-elect Mayor Mara Giulianti and Commissioner Quentin "Beam" Furr and elect Patricia Asseff and Joshua Levy to the Commission.

Mayor -- Mara Giulianti

There may be no more controversial and polarizing city official in Broward County than Hollywood mayor Mara Giulianti. Nonetheless, the mayor has worked tirelessly on her vision for the city. And flawed as her efforts may have been, the end result is that parts of Hollywood, especially the downtown, are today modern and on the road to revitalization.

Giulianti has been in office for 22 years -- 20 as mayor -- and seeks one more term. Despite the difficulties of the past years -- Commissioner Keith Wasserstrom convicted of official misconduct, controversial incentives to developers, the secrecy on the Arts Park project, a wide-ranging scandal in the police department -- the South Florida Sun-Sentinel Editorial Board believes that because of Giulianti's efforts the voters in this citywide race ought to grant her another term in office.

Is this newspaper's editorial board on drugs? Their own columnist Michael Mayo wrote the following in 2005-

Take the raging case of the Mach family, whose commercial property the city wants to take through a forced sale for a 19-story condominium project on Young Circle. The city commission, by a 5-2 vote, has chosen to go the eminent domain route, spending plenty in taxpayer money, because the developer and the family couldn't agree on a sale price.

She downplayed the issues of individual property rights and potential government abuse of power. She made much about developer Chip Abele being a good guy because he serves on the board of the local Boys and Girls Club and criticized the family because she hasn't known them to do any charitable community work.

Now there's a reasonable basis for public policy.


The city lavishes favored developers with tens of millions of dollars in incentives, but uses hardball nickel-and-dime tactics against a family whose land it wants.


Giulianti seemed genuinely hurt when I said outsiders might view the new rules as elitist at best, racist at worst. She said city manager Cameron Benson, an African-American, helped craft them and that it's better to keep out "anti-social hooligans" by rewriting ordinances than dealing with them once they're here.

She cited fighting, rowdyism, public urination and bottle-breaking as justification for the effort.Then why not just beef up police presence on weekends to deal with criminal behavior?

"That could cost $1 million a year in overtime," she said.

Funny, Giulianti didn't seem to mind giving $25 million in inducements to Abele for his two proposed projects.

The City is paying 25 million to a developer so he can rebuild on land claimed by the city under eminent domain. This doesn't count any profit Mr. Abele makes. There's more.

And she didn't mind giving $11 million in inducements to developer Steve Berman for his Radius condominium project that didn't need much help: All units were gobbled up with $15,000 deposits in one day, before a shovel hit the ground.

Apparently, Hollywood would rather siphon its money into the pockets of the private sector than onto its streets.

The Sun-Sentinel sees fit to endorse this politician for re-election?

Bob at The Daily Pulp wrote the following-

Unbelievable. What an insult, not only to the people of the town, but to the newspaper's own reporters who helped uncover Mara's misdeeds, including the fact that her computer mysteriously broke down after state investigators asked for her emails in a criminal investigation involving the town's sewage scandal. That ended with the conviction of her closest ally, Keith Wasserstrom, who was also her son's law partner. The woman is damn lucky she wasn't indicted and if she had been, she'd most likely be waiting for sentencing along with her boy Keith.

What a clueless, disgusting board.

I agree with Bob. The editorial board in Fort Lauderdale is.......I don't know what. One thing is certain, The editorial page of The Sun-Sentinel is today's Knucklehead of the Day.


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Comments (4)

"Is this newspaper's editor... (Below threshold)
mikem Author Profile Page:

"Is this newspaper's editorial board on drugs?"


And yes, obviously.

I'm hoping that this is also your basic *unbiased* newspaper following a strict party line and not just drain bamage, but who knows?

As I have remonstrated with... (Below threshold)

As I have remonstrated with publishers before, a newspaper's duty is to be the watch dog over government, not the lap dog FOR it. Honorable Mention Knuckleheads to the moron voters who kept this crooked loon in office for the first 20 years . . .

Nothing good can com... (Below threshold)

Nothing good can come from one person serving as mayor for 20 years.

No mention of the party affiliation of these people. Yeahhh, sure, it's a "non-partisan" election. What party are they?

Haven't these people got a lawyer to explain Kelo to them?

"That could cost $1 mill... (Below threshold)

"That could cost $1 million a year in overtime," she said.

That's a stupid answer. Never mind that hiring new police officers, rather than handing out overtime would cut that cost by a full third. A smart business person wouldn't continue to give overtime when hiring new bodies is more cost effective.

I grew up in Hollywood. I have so many fond memories of going to Young Circle for outdoor concerts, art shows and other social gatherings. Young Circle is one of three "circles" on Hollywood Boulevard leading out to the beach. Presidential Circle at the west end has a huge office building. The one in the middle holds the library and the police department (or once did). And Young Circle was a nice break in the monotony of commercial real estate. It also intersects US 1 and Hollywood Blvd.

The stretch of the Blvd. immediately to the west has indeed been revitalized though. The crack dealers and prostitutes are gone and businesses have moved back in. It's a bustling area now with unique shops and restaurants. Keeping Young Circle as a park would be a perfect complement to the area. But the city's thoughts are running toward tax revenues. Even if it means taking what it wants by force.






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