Friday, February 12, 2016

Ace meets Pluto at Disneyland...Ace loses his sh*t

Via Local 10: "[Guide dog in training] Ace was at Disneyland for a socialization experience as part of his guide dog training. When he saw Pluto, he couldn't resist. The video shows Ace coming up to Pluto and licking him. You can hear his volunteer trainer, Sandy Steinblums, saying "stay" and "down," which he does."

So Cute!!! Service Dog in training gets to meet his favorite character Pluto!
Posted by Disney Dorks on Monday, February 8, 2016

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine was proud that he harassed the driver of a Fed Ex truck ... so he posted a video on YouTube

Miami Beach Mayor Philip "Dickhead" Levine is gunning
for double-parked delivery trucks.

UPDATED on Feb. 12 @ 9:30 a.m.

After Mayor Levine confronted the Fed Ex driver, he called City Manager Jimmy Morales who then called someone in the police department. An officer was dispatched to look for the Fed Ex truck.

Armed with the truck's tag number, Officer Eric Dominguez tracked down the truck less than a mile away.
From: Chong, Hyok
Sent: Thursday, February 11, 2016 3:26 PM
To: Causey, Mark
Cc: Dominguez, Eric; Jones, Wayne; Robinson, Ian
Subject: Blocking Lane of Travel


Officer Eric Dominguez conducted a traffic stop in the 1400 & 1500blk Washington Avenue ref. double park violation.

It was the FedEx white truck bearing FL tag GEYC77 from the Mayor’s video from Alton Road.

Thank you,


Hyok Chong, Lieutenant
Operations Division | Traffic Operations Unit
1100 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139


From: "Causey, Mark"
Date: February 11, 2016 at 3:41:31 PM EST
To: "Levine, Philip"
"Morales, Jimmy"
Subject: FedEx truck Blocking Lane of Travel

Mr. Mayor,

In response to the FedEx truck and driver that you videotaped earlier today blocking a lane of traffic along the 1400 block of Alton, Road, we were able to identify the driver, locate him doing the same thing along Washington Avenue. The FedEx driver received two separate citations.

Capt. Robinson and or Lt. Chong will be contacting the regional manager of FedEx and asking them to send out a directive to all drivers coming to our city and ask them to comply with rules or they will be cited.



Mark Causey, Major
Operations Division Commanding Officer
1100 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139
Tel: 305-673-7776, ext. 5662 / Fax: 786-394-5023

Ironically, Officer Eric Dominguez has first hand knowledge of what happens when citizens with video cameras hit the record button.

Four years ago, Dominguez was videotaped racing down the sands of Miami Beach like a NASCAR driver.


The City of Miami once had a commissioner whose city car was equipped with a police radio. It wasn't long before some started calling J.L. Plummer, "Commissioner Kojak."

From Miami New Times:
In 1975 the commissioner helped arrest three men who had beaten and robbed an elderly man downtown. Plummer spotted the attack, radioed the cops, and used his Cadillac to pin one of the hoodlums. He handcuffed the miscreant to a pole until Miami cops arrived. The other two robbers were later nabbed by police.

In 1981, the Miami Herald reported that Plummer and one other Miami commissioner regularly wore ankle-holstered guns into City Hall. The same story reported that Commissioner Joe Carollo kept a machine gun in the trunk of his car.

Miami Beach doesn't have any politicians who carry guns or handcuff miscreants.

But there is Mayor Philip Levine who seems to be on a mission to rid the streets of double-parked delivery trucks.

Here he is in action today haranguing a Fed Ex driver for daring to double park on Alton Road.

Levine was so proud of his crime-busting prowess that he posted the video on Twitter, YouTube and Facebook.

The Miami Herald reports that Levine texted Miami Beach city manager Jimmy Morales and that the driver was later cited.

There's a reason why I call Levine, "Mayor Dickhead." And that's because he's a dickhead.

Here's a guy out busting his ass trying to earn an honest living, and a chauffeur-driven, multi-millionaire douchebag politician is busting his balls.

But this is Levine's modus operandi. He's like Miami Beach's low-rent, flea market version of Donald Trump: a loud-mouthed bully.

This kind of behavior is not out of character for Levine. Last year he climbed into the cab of a double-parked Coca-Cola truck and snatched the keys from ignition and made the driver wait until cops arrived and ticketed him

On Facebook, some criticized Levine for his behavior towards the Fed Ex driver. 

Levine's been making an ass of himself lately.

Last week while stumping for Hillary Clinton, he actually went on national television and said "I understand now Senator Sanders is going to be offering free Uber, free Netflix, free Starbucks coffee."

Levine fancies himself as Miami Beach's version of Michael Bloomberg. But it's hard to imagine Mike Bloomberg when he was mayor of NYC, running down the street screaming like a ninny at a Fed Ex driver while filming the entire thing with an iPhone.

Memo to Mayor Levine: In case you've forgotten, Florida once had a Governor who earned the respect of voters by literally walking in their shoes.

He didn't disrespect and harass men and women who earned their daily bread by the sweat of their brow.

In 1977, Bob Graham spent the first of what he would come to call his "workdays."

Well into the 80s, Graham toiled beside ordinary working men and women, completing hundreds of workdays.

You should try it sometime, Mr. Mayor.

You might even learn a thing or two.  And you won't come off looking like a complete ass.


Related reading: Miami Beach threatens to confiscate bikes locked to street signs

Monday, February 08, 2016

Here's a video of a baby panda climbing a tree for the first time

The Smithsonian's National Zoo's baby panda, Bei Bei, climbed a tree for the first time today.

Saturday, February 06, 2016

The most awkward debate intro in the history of debates

Click to enlarge.

What happened in that awkward intro at the GOP debate?
We were all confused.
Posted by Washington Post on Saturday, February 6, 2016

And then this happened....


Donald Trump and Eminent Domain...a brief history.

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Monday, February 01, 2016

Miami-Dade's Transit Nightmare: Poor planning and broken promises

WTVJ, May 21, 1984


"In Miami, the $1 billion subsidy helped build a system that serves less than 10,000 daily riders. That comes to $100,000 per passenger. It would have been a lot cheaper to buy everyone a limousine." —Ronald Reagan, March 1985


"By the year 2000, people will be saying, by gosh, how did we live without it?" —Dade County Commissioner Beverly Phillips in 1985


"This is huge for generations to come. Twenty years from now, this community will look a lot different. You will have Metrorail and Metrobus to every corner of Miami-Dade County, and even into Broward County." —Miami-Dade Mayor Alex Penelas quoted in the Miami Herald, Nov. 6, 2002, after voters approved a half-penny sales tax to build a multi-billion dollar mass transit system


"During the next decade, thanks to the tax, commuters and transit riders can expect a steady stream of improvements in bus and rail service that should culminate in the inauguration of the first two new Metrorail lines since the rapid-transit system opened in 1985, county officials said.

"Just a hint of what that will mean, if all goes according to plan: People will be able for the first time to reach Miami International Airport by Metrorail from North Miami-Dade, from West Miami-Dade, from Kendall, maybe even from South Beach.

"By then, county officials say, a dense network of Metrobus routes will blanket the county, with minibuses reaching into neighborhoods and full-size buses running at short intervals, many of them around the clock." —TRANSIT-TAX BENEFITS KICKING IN RIGHT AWAY, Miami Herald, Nov. 7, 2002


"These days, weekday ridership of Metrorail is 75,000, almost four times what it was in 1985, but only a third of what was predicted." GRIDLOCK,  by John Dorschner, Biscayne Times, Feb. 2016


In 2002, Miami Dade voters approved a half-penny sales tax "to stop traffic nightmares because, in return, politicians promised 90 more miles of Metrorail and almost double the bus fleet," writes former Miami Herald reporter John Dorschner in a cover story in this month's Biscayne Times.

So how's that working out? 

"Well," Dorschner reports, "Metrorail expanded 2.4 miles, an extension reaching Miami International Airport. The number of buses is about the same now as it was then."

Here's a little more of Dorschner's reporting. You can read the entire Biscayne Times piece by clicking here.
Promises quickly collapsed. In 1985, a year after the system opened, I wrote a cover story for the Herald’s Tropic magazine titled “Metrofail,” remembered mostly for its cover of white circus elephants walking in a line along an elevated track. After a year, Metrorail was carrying just 20,000 riders, one-tenth of projections. Operating costs were pushing the county deep into the red.

A half-dozen academic transportation experts I talked to at the time said the county would have been better off with a vastly expanded bus system running in express lanes; rail, they maintained, didn’t fit Miami’s urban sprawl. Many noted that the ridership was far heavier on the south end, favoring the white suburbanites going downtown, and was much sparser in the blue-collar areas of black Liberty City and Hispanic Hialeah. A Harvard transportation professor called Metrorail “the laughingstock of the nation.”

As deficits mounted, voters were asked three times in the 1990s to approve a penny sales tax for transit. The rejections were overwhelming.

In 2002, county Mayor Alex Penelas tried again. He lowered the request to a half-penny and increased promises, not only for huge expansions of Metrorail and buses, but also for free rides for seniors on all transit and no charges for anyone on the downtown Metromover. In addition, each city in the county would get a slice of the half-penny, with allotments based on population. Sweetening the pie even further, the referendum promised the tax would finance “improving major neighborhood roads and highways.” This time the measure passed overwhelmingly.

Six years later, the Herald’s Larry Lebowitz wrote that much of the half-penny had gone to relieving operating deficits, adding 1000 transit jobs, and spending $2 million for new office furniture.

“At the heart of the matter,” Lebowitz wrote, “the 2002 campaign avoided any mention of chronic financial problems that had plagued the transit agency, and it promised far more improvements than the tax could possibly deliver.”