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Tampa Bay Rants And Raves



TBR&R is a weekly airing of national and local politics, sports, lifestyle and nostalgia items from a very politically incorrect viewpoint. As always, beware - much of what is printed here should not be taken literally.


Keeping Keene green and other down ballot stuff


The issues are way down below the Trump-Biden equator but there is potential dynamite on the second page of your ballot. First, for Clearwater voters, one of the most important issues is the very last on the ballot – the referendum to allow the city to lease some 58 acres of the Landings Golf Course, by the Clearwater Airpark, for light industrial use. That is simply too much green space to give up and there is already plenty of light industrial space available in North County. We recommend a “no” vote. No votes are also important on Constitutional Amendments 2 and 3. Amendment 2 urges us to arbitrarily increase the minimum wage in the state to $15.00 an hour by 2026. Well and good if you don’t mind $15 Big Macs or $6.00 a pound tomatoes. (More on this in TBR&R 1/12/20). The second poison amendment is Number 3, which urges us to allow cross party voting in primaries. This defeats the entire concept of primaries – for Democrats to nominate their strongest person to face off with the best in the view of Republican voters. The proposed amendment invites partisans with only one viable candidate in an election to jump parties and attempt to vote in a less qualified nominee from the opposition party. This so-called “top two” primary is practiced in only two states – California and Washington – that should tell you all you need to know.


Great Tampa Bay, politics and stuff:


1. We are also being asked (depending on where you live) to elect almost a majority of our Pinellas County Commission. Unlike previous years, there is not much to choose from. Charlie Justice and Rene Flowers have been average public servants, but the difference is their opponents are woefully unqualified. But it’s not the same with Janet Long, at best an average county commissioner, whose opponent Larry Ahern brings a much stronger resume to the table. A fourth commissioner, Karen Seel, is unopposed – no surprise as she has been arguably the shining star of the commission in her twenty plus years on the board.

2. It is hard to feel any sympathy for potential voters who were inconvenienced by a 15-minute glitch in the registration system on the very last day to register. What were they waiting for – a check from Bloomberg?

3. With Justice Ginsburg’s passing, who becomes the liberal lightning rod of the high court? It’s just about 50-50 between Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor, like Ginsburg, both ultra-liberal and protectors of abortion clinics.

4. Let us try to follow this. California wants to ban gas-powered cars replacing them with electric cars - this in a state that already has rolling blackouts. What are we missing here?

5. From the Purellitzer award winning 5:05 Newsletter, this thought: “Every single frozen corpse on Mt. Everest was once a highly motivated person. Stay lazy, my friends”.


Sports, media and other stuff:


6. Idle thought: what a difference a good quarterback makes for a pro football team.

7. In TBR&R 6/7/20, we opined on our “dream pitching rotation” specifically Steve Carlton, Bob Gibson, Sandy Koufax, Greg Maddux and Nolan Ryan. One of those five giants passed away last week at age 84. All five hurlers were extremely competitive, but none more than the Card’s Bob Gibson – who chose baseball over a pro career in basketball.

8. Ah, can't you see me standin' here; I got my back against the record machine; I ain't the worst that you've seen – a classic line from Van Halen’s biggest hit – Jump. The band’s namesake, Eddie Van Halen, succumbed to cancer last week at age 65.

9. It was an odd year in baseball indeed. Two sets of numbers jump up – NL MVP Christian Yelich finishing the season just over the Mendoza line (.205) and Dodger’s slugger Max Muncy coming in at .192.

10. Recently seen on a bumper sticker: “Pray for our Police.” Amen to that.


MLB: Twelve down, four to go


The extraordinary field of 16 MLB teams has now been trimmed to four. Probably the biggest surprise survivor is Houston. The Astros limped into the playoffs but their big bats prevailed over the A’s. An errant Aroldis Chapman pitch to Mike Brosseau allowed our home town nine to squeeze into the AL finals to contest the legitimacy of the Astros’ season. The Marlin’s incredible streak of seven straight playoff series victories ended at the hands of the Braves’ powerful lineup and the top bullpen in major league baseball. And the Dodgers were again the Dodgers – simply the best team in baseball. We think this is their year after a 32-year drought.

UP NEXT: Things we appreciate; Mail it now; Chairman of the Board



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