There is a blackboard jungle voodoo in Key West mostly post today at www.goodmorningkeywest.com, which you should be able to reach by clicking on either link today, 1/30/13, or any day by clicking on the first link.
Yesterday evening at Coco’s Kitchen on Big Pine Key, a woman I see around from time to time but don’t really know and I kept catching each other’s eye, so I left the communal table and went over to say hi. After introductions, perhaps reintroductions, my memory may have been on the blink, she said she voted for me last year, when I ran for the School Board. Then, she said she always votes for me. I paused, thought, said, did that mean she was crazy? She paused, thought, said, maybe so. We talked a little while longer, then she left and I went back to the regulars at the communal table, all of whom know I’m crazy, but they somehow seem to manage to get by it.
There were some other people in there I know somewhat, who live on No Name Key (photo is bridge from Big Pine Key over to No Name Key). I had not seen them in a while. Friendly people from No Name Key, as opposed to people from out there who want the island put on the grid and are certain I am both crazy and the devil. Maybe because they know I frequent Coco’s Kitchen, the No Name Key folks who want to put the island on the grid don’t use Coco’s Kitchen; at least not the pro-grid folks I know somewhat.
My involvement in trying to keep No Name Key off the grid, ie. the way it is, predates my knowing anybody who lives out there by 11 years.
Many times now, I have shared the story of how I was told in early January 1995, by the angels many people say I invented, to go to No Name Key from Boulder, Colorado, where I then lived. To go as soon as possible, it was important. To go there and end up on the middle of the bridge between No Name Key and Big Pine Key, surrounded by pelicans in the air, bawling my eyes out, hanging onto the bridge railing for dear life, looking toward the Atlantic Ocean, and hearing, “Because you love this place so much, you will be used to try to protect it.”
That night, this poem fell out of me:
Behold, the pelican!
Slow, ugly, clumsy afoot,
But in the air
a great fisher indeed!
And in times of want
plucks out its own breast meat
to feed its young.
By that time in my life, I understood the pelican was the Christ bird in the Holy Grail tradition. I understood who had told me to go to Big Pine Key, to go as soon as possible, it was important. In early January, 1995.
However, I did not get involved in the politics of Big Pine Key and No Name Key until the spring of 2006, after I had moved to Little Torch Key, where I now live. The angels I am accused of inventing had me run for the County Commission seat held by George Neugent. That voting district stretches from just above Shark Key to lower Marathon, and George’s County Commission office was, and still is, on Big Pine Key.
It was in 2006 that I met Mick and Alicia Putney, two environmentalists living on No Name Key. They wanted the key to stay off the grid. Because it was off the grid was why they had built their dream home out there. They thought they had died and gone to heaven, being able to build a home in a Federal Wildlife Refuge.
George Neugent beat me 2-1 in that race, and in March 2007, the angels I am said to invent moved me down to Key West, where I lived until March 2010. During that time, the angels I am said to invent had me run twice for Mayor of Key West, and once for the County Commission seat then held by Sonny McCoy. To my great relief, I came in a distant third, as an Independent, against a Democrat and a Republican. The Democrat, Heather Carruthers won, and she would win a second term in 2012, by running unopposed.
Although I was living in Key West, I remained deeply involved in the politics of Big Pine Key and No Name Key, mostly due to my having made the acquaintance, in 2006, of “Captain Conch,” aka Deer Ed, of www.bigpinekey.com’s Coconut Telegraph, who had created a special archive on the Coconut Telegraph for my daily ravings, which was before he helped me start up www.gooodmorningkeywest.con, and a few months later www.goodmorningfloridakeys.com.
From Key West, I emailed Deer Ed “teasers” with links to my daily ravings at the goodmorning websites, for him to post on the Coconut Telegraph, for which service I paid him so much a month. I continued to rave from time to time about the politics of Big Pine Key and No Name Key. During that time, Mick Putney contacted a medical problem and quickly passed over, which really upset me. I memorialized Mick in a post at the goodmorning websites, and wondered out loud, who would take his place, defending No Name Key?
The angels I am said to invent moved me back to Little Torch Key in March 2010, and that year I ran again for George Neugent’s County Commission seat. After beating political new comer Danny Coll in the Republican primary by about 55-45 percent of the vote, George trounced me 3-1 in the general election, much to my relief, as I had not wanted to run for office again, and I sure as hell didn’t want the job in any event. By then, I knew for a fact that anyone who ran for office was crazy, an ego maniac and/or a crook.
The angels I am said to invent don’t care how I feel about anything they tell me to do. If I invented them, I would not be terrified of telling them to take a hike. I am terrified of telling them to take a hike, because they have demonstrated many times that they can do anything unpleasant to me, which they want to do to me, anytime they want to do it to me. They told me in dreams at an ungodly hour this morning to write about No Name Key today. I woke up, shot them a bird for waking me up so early.
It was in 2010 that I started frequenting Coco’s Kitchen and getting know its owners, Coco, who cooks, and her daughter Rose, who runs the counter. It was then that the pro-grid folks on No Name Key decided I was the devil, and they wrote on the Coconut Telegraph that Rose was Sloan’s wench and Alicia Putney was his witch. I took that as a great compliment, but I think maybe Rose and Alicia were less thrilled.
That brief history of time brings me to this recent article in The Keynoter:
No commercial power? County sued for $10 million
By RYAN McCARTHY
Posted – Saturday, January 26, 2013 06:00 AM EST
Four No Name Key residents filed a $10 million discrimination lawsuit against Monroe County Thursday in Circuit Court.
Jim and Ruth Newton, along with Robert and Julianne Reynolds, allege the county has for years willfully denied the Lower Keys island commercial power without proper cause. Currently homes there are powered by solar and generators.
“The county has a long history of discrimination against that island and the residents and its very flagrant. And if it’s not discrimination, it’s ignorance,” Reynolds said Friday.
The crux of the plaintiffs’ argument is Chief Circuit Court Judge David Audlin’s ruling in 2011 that the state Public Service Commission has jurisdiction over the matter, not the county.
That ruling came about from a county filing asking Audlin to decide whether county law allows commercial electricity on No Name. County officials say the law doesn’t allow it and that it can’t issue permits for it.
The suit concentrates on Monroe County fighting the installation of 62 Keys Energy Services power poles last year, as well as a 2001 county ordinance creating a coastal barrier overlay district prohibiting commercial utilities in federal coastal barrier areas.
Congress created the Coastal Barrier Resource System in 1982, and updated it in 1990, to protect undeveloped coastal barrier areas.
The lawsuit also addresses the Newtons’ controversial application last year for an electrical building permit from the county. Originally granted, it was revoked when county officials realized their home is on No Name.
In addition to the $10 million in damages — which Reynolds called a “low” number– the plaintiffs want Audlin to void the county’s coastal barrier overlay district law and grant homeowners electrical permits.
“If you knew what this has done to the friendships and relationships there … it’s pretty much the only thing they think about and talk about. I don’t know what the value of my peace of mind is, but in my mind it’s pretty significant,” Reynolds said.
He’s owned a house on No Name since 2005.
I told the No Name Key folks yesterday evening at Coco’s that Bob Reynolds and his wife, and the Newtons, had forgotten to sue the real defendants, the people who had caused them all of their misery out there on No Name Key, who were themselves who had bought and moved out there knowing the island was off the grid, without any inducement from Monroe County for them to do that, nor with any promises from Monroe County that No Name Key ever would be on the grid. I said I thought maybe the law requires plaintiffs to sue the real defendants, also sometimes called the real parties interest, aka the necessary parties, or their lawsuit is due to be dismissed.
The No Name Key folks were laughing so hard, as were some other people at Coco’s, that they nearly fell out of their chairs. They laughed even harder when I said Bob Reynold’s wife should sue him for making her move to No Name Key. Then, I said, maybe she will. From what all I’ve heard and read about Bob on the Coconut Telegraph, not put there by me, and other places, he is not someone I would want one of my daughters to spend any time around. But then, what do I know? Maybe his wife is completely happy with him, and is thrilled they bought their place on No Name Key. Although if she is thrilled they bought out there, why is she so unthrilled now? What changed since they bought their place in 2005, to kill her thrill?
Apply the same crazy justice thinking to the Reynolds and other people living on No Name Key, who are pissed off at Monroe County, Alicia Putney and me. They moved themselves out there without consulting Monroe County, Alicia Putney or me. Nobody twisted their arms that I ever heard to get them to move out there. They could have bought a home on nearby and closer in Big Pine Key, instead, and had all the Keys Energy Services electricty and Florida Keys Aqueduct water they wanted, for so long as they paid their utility bills.
I, who once was viewed in America as a leader in home buyer’s rights, a defender of home buyers against unethical real estate agents and brokers, mortgage companies, etc., who later bawled an ocean of tears on No Name Key bridge, have not yet found it in me to shed even one tiny tear for anyone who bought a home on No Name Key and now blames Monroe County, Alicia Putney or me for it not being on the grid.
Sloan Bashinsky, ex-lawyer, author of HOME BUYERS: Lambs to the Slaughter? The pro-grid folks on No Name Key slaughtered themselves.