Tag Archives | Florida

Florida Atheist’s Challenge Leads To Display Of Festivus Pole In The State Capitol

festivusA Florida man has forced the state to display his homemade pillar of beer cans alongside a nativity scene at the state capitol, NBC 6 South Florida reports:

A nearly 6-foot-tall pole made from emptied beer cans will be put up in the Florida Capitol this week as a not-so-subtle protest to the recent placement of a Christian nativity scene.

The homemade Festivus pole will be erected most likely on Wednesday in the same first-floor rotunda as a nativity scene depicting the birth of Jesus Christ that was put up last week by the Florida Prayer Network. Festivus is a “holiday” created for the TV sitcom “Seinfeld”.

Chaz Stevens, a Deerfield Beach resident, applied to the state Department of Management Services to put the Festivus pole on display. Stevens said the intent of the Festivus pole is to make a political statement on the need for the separation of church and state.

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Scientology’s “Super Power” Training Compound Opens In Florida

quadrantThink of it as an expensive, snobby private gym for training your abilities of extrasensory perception. As reported by the New York Daily News:

The stunning 377,000-square-foot center in Clearwater, Fla., will reserve its top floors for ‘super power’ counseling services to its members. A similar program in Los Angeles utilized an anti-gravity simulator, various exercise machines, and a gyroscope-like apparatus that spins blindfolded riders around, according to one Scientologist.

The Church of Scientology plans to dedicate its stunning 377,000-square-foot center in Clearwater, Fla., on Sunday. According to the new-age religion’s website, “The top floors of the new building are reserved for ‘Super Power,’ a series of Scientology counseling services offered nowhere else.”

“Super Power,” first unveiled by Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard, is one’s ability to hone in on 57 senses called “perceptics” [beyond] the original five senses. “Perceptics” the programs aim to help members master are personal size, blood circulation, fields/magnetic, sound direction, and emotional state of groups.

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Mormon Church To Purchase 2% Of The Entire State Of Florida

mormon_churchJust when you thought Florida could not get any weirder…Russia Today reports:

The Mormon Church is poised to become the largest private landowner in the state of Florida after spending more than half a billion dollars to purchase hundreds of thousands of acres across three counties.

Representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints announced Thursday they had bought most of the real estate owned by the St. Joe development company for $565 million. Municipalities in Bay, Calhoun, Franklin, Gadsden, Gulf, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty and Wakulla counties are included in the nearly 400,000 acres of land. The land, much of which is rich with timber, is located along the Florida panhandle.

The St. Joe Co. has owned the land for more than a dozen years and originally planned to profit from so-called master-planned communities in the region. That plan went sour when the real estate bubble bust,

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Hundreds of Herpetic Monkeys Roam Florida

Oh, Florida: Funny-Monkey-2You’re the state that keeps on giving, Anybody got a blowgun loaded with Valtrex handy?

Via Drudge Report:

Beware of the monkeys!

Hundreds of rare wild monkeys — some carrying herpes — are on the loose in Florida after a tour guide brought the spunky critters to the state long ago.

Wildlife officials said that three pairs of Rhesus monkeys were transported to a park near Ocala in the 1930s by tour operator Colonel Tooey after a “Tarzan” flick sparked a fascination with the creature.

But the breed has since boomed and more than 1,000 of the monkeys now live in the state, wildlife officials say.

Read on for tales of Herpes Monkeys Madness.

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Florida Man Cites “Bush Doctrine” As Legal Defense In Killing Of Neighbors

bush doctrine

Give this man the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Via Gawker:

A Florida man who shot three of his neighbors killing two of them has cited the state’s infamous Stand Your Ground law in his defense, but with a twist: William T. Woodward insists the “Bush Doctrine” of preventive war gives him the right to murder his neighbors before they murder him.

An ongoing dispute between Woodward and his neighbors, Gary Lee Hembree, Roger Picior, and Bruce Timothy Blake, culminated in a Labor Day shooting that left Hembree and Picior dead and Blake badly wounded.

Lawyers for Woodward, 44, have asked the court to dismiss the first-degree murder charges against his client, saying Woodward’s neighbors had verbally harassed him in the hours leading up to the shooting, and could even be heard saying “we’re going to get him, all three of us.”

In their argument, the attorneys mentioned the “Bush Doctrine” as a justification for preemptive attack in the face of a potential threat.

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Elderly In Florida Town Swear By Radioactive “Fountain Of Youth”

fountain of youthEternal life or no, drinking this water daily is bound to have some interesting results. Via National Geographic:

Thanks to the myth of Ponce de Leon’s trip, Florida—known for its large population of retirees—is now awash in “fountains of youth.” Only one, however, is known to be radioactive.

In Punta Gorda, a town on Charlotte Harbor, a blocky, green-tiled fountain abuts an empty lot near the harbor. A spigot juts out near the top to release water from the artesian well below.

On the side facing away from the street, a public health notice warns that the water “exceeds the maximum contaminant level for radioactivity.” The water from the well is also heavy in sulfates, which give it a smell of rotten eggs. This hasn’t stopped the locals from drinking from it regularly. “I drank out of that well every day,” said Gussie Baker, a resident of Punta Gorda for all of her 78 years.

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Florida Mom Received Twenty-Year Sentence For Firing Warning Shots To Abusive Husband

firing warning shotsFrom one year ago, a case that has been compared and contrasted with George Zimmerman’s in regards to notions of “self defense” and “Stand Your Ground” in the Florida legal system. Reported by CBS News:

A Florida woman who fired warning shots against her allegedly abusive husband has been sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Marissa Alexander of Jacksonville had said the state’s “Stand Your Ground” law should apply to her because she was defending herself against her allegedly abusive husband when she fired warning shots inside her home in August 2010. She told police it was to escape a brutal beating by her husband, against whom she had already taken out a protective order.

Under Florida’s mandatory minimum sentencing requirements Alexander couldn’t receive a lesser sentence, even though she has never been in trouble with the law before.

According to a sworn deposition, Marissa Alexander’s husband, Rico Gray, said that he and Alexander began fighting after he found text messages to Alexander’s first husband on her phone.

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Florida Sheriff Arrested After Defending Second Amendment

Sheriff Nicholas Finch said he “believed in Second Amendment rights” after releasing a man arrested on a gun charge.

Via Infowars:

A Florida sheriff who believes in the Second Amendment was charged Tuesday for removing the arrest file of a suspect held on an unconstitutional gun charge but later released.

Liberty County Sheriff Nicholas Finch, 50, was booked in his own jail Tuesday with one count of official misconduct by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The FDLE accuses Finch of covering up the arrest of Floyd Eugene Parrish after releasing him from the Liberty County Jail. Parrish had been arrested for carrying a concealed firearm without a license, a third-degree felony in Florida.

On March 8, Sgt. James Joseph Hoagland of the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office arrested Parrish during a traffic stop after finding a .25 automatic pistol in Parrish’s pocket and a holstered revolver in the front seat, according to court records.

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How The CIA Helped Orchestrate The Extralegal Creation Of Disney World

disney worldVia the Daily Beast, T.D. Allman explains how top CIA alumni helped Disney buy up large swathes of South Florida land in secretive fashion and create its own private cities and quasi-government:

Disney’s key contact was the consummate cloak-and-dagger operator, William “Wild Bill” Donovan. Sometimes called the “Father of the C.I.A,” he was also the founding partner of Donovan, Leisure, Newton & Irvine, a New York law firm whose attorneys included future C.I.A. director William Casey.

In order to maintain “control over the overall development,” Disney and his advisers realized, “the company would have to find a way to limit the voting power of the private residents.” Here again the CIA was there to help. Disney’s principal legal strategist for Florida was a senior clandestine operative named Paul Helliwell. Helliwell came up with the approach that to this day allows the Disney organization to avoid taxation and environmental regulation as well as maintain immunity from the U.S.

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Florida Hit By Invasion Of Hundreds Of Thousands Of Giant Snails

giant african land snailWill this be how the world ends — covered in snail slime? Tampa’s WTSP reports:

Since September 8, 2011 when the snails were first found, the Florida Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Agriculture have collected more than 40,000 of the Giant African snails.

The Giant African land snail is one of the largest land snails in the world, growing up to eight inches in length. State officials said this invasive species eats at least 500 different agricultural crops, can cause damage to plaster and stucco on homes and though rare, can carry rat lungworm, a parasite that can cause meningitis in humans.

The last reported outbreak and eradication of the Giant African land snail in Florida occurred in 1966 when a boy smuggled three Giant African land snails into Miami as pets and his grandmother released the snails into her garden. It’s not known how the latest outbreak started, but it’s illegal to bring the snails into the US without a permit.

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