Since 2002. Published Tuesdays and Fridays
Letters to the Editor with pictures
|[Coconut Telegraph Sued With Others] Key West blogger and former political candidate and attorney Sloan Bashinsky was back in front of a judge Friday, arguing his side of a lawsuit filed by an Alabama woman who offered to “keep” Sloan for 7 months in Alabama before their arrangement went south. Judith Haney, of Leeds, Alabama, submitted a complaint on Dec. 30, seeking a restraining order on Bashinsky for alleged libel, invasion of privacy and cyberstalking. “I have been the subject of internet postings, most of them defamatory,” she said. The saga began last year, when Haney sent Bashinsky $1,000, flew him to Birmingham, Alabama, and furnished him with a credit card, apartment and car. Within a week, Haney said she lost confidence in Bashinsky, realized she made a mistake and “pulled the plug,” sending Bashinsky back to Key West.
Haney testified that the harassment started soon after Haney had 6 police officers escort Bashinsky from the apartment she leased for him, online he called her a public menace and scam artist with bad credit, she should have her hands cut off and keel hauled and fantasized about stabbing her with a pitchfork and hogtying her to shoot her with Thorazine. Bashinsky also contacted neighbors, her physician and city officials in her hometown as part of the harassment, she said.
Since the initial suit was filed. Dec. 30, Haney and Bashinsky (both representing themselves) submitted more than 70 add-on motions to the case (including motions by Haney seeking punitive and compensatory damages), which led 16th Circuit Judge Bonnie Helms to issue an order to show cause at the hearing why each should not be barred from making further filings.
Bashinsky attempted to establish her as a public figure and vexatious litigator. He inquired about current and former lawsuits Haney has filed, including three pending suits against Keys residents Naja Girard, Rick Boettger and Deer Ed of The Coconut Telegraph, which all stem from her interactions with Bashinsky.
The three parties were all present at the hearing, which at one point saw Sloan’s girlfriend removed from the court by Helms after saying something Haney called, “very derogatory.” Asked about previous lawsuits filed in Leeds, Haney said she didn’t recall an exact number of filings but thought it was fewer than 20 suits, but couldn’t remember if she ever hired a lawyer. Sloan had proof of at least 30 suits she filed. He had that entered as evidence.
“I will provide my ruling in writing,” Judge Helms said after the 2 1/2 hour hearing.
Naja Girard and Rich Boettger’s hearing is April 26 and Deer Ed’s is on April 27 at 11 am. Among other things, Haney is trying to get a restraining order against Deer Ed fearing bodily harm from him. She thinks he will travel to Alabama and attack a woman he’s never met nor heard of until she filed suit against him.
Haney was in such fear of Sloan and Deer Ed and of having her hands cut off, keel hauled, stabbed with a pitchfork, hogtied, and shot with Thorazine that she asked for police escort to go to and from the ladies’ room when she has to pee. (Thanks to Scott Unger, Key West Citizen–edited by Deer Ed)
|[FTR on Term Limits] On Friday a poster who was fed up with the County Commission and the sewers wrote: “Will the taxpayers ever understand that it is those five commissioners that we elected that have given Key Haven residents, Shark Key residents, Tom Morgan’s public subdivision, probably? Ocean Reef, and other bubba’s special considerations. The voters have the ability to get rid of these 5 commissioners, but history has shown that the voters here keep getting what they deserve.”The post was spot on. As long as we do not have term limits, those with the deep pockets will get hugs, kisses, and very special treatment from big political donors. Big bucks buys big votes. And it buys fawning attention from our elected officials. The longer that politicians are in office, the more they become beholden to their big donors. That’s just a fact.
You can help change that. Speak out in favor of term limiting Congress and our local policy making officials.
[Drug Addicts, Legal and Not] 52,000 people died in 2015 of opioid use.
|[“Regulate Vacation Rentals”] Vacation renting is a business. Get your permits, licenses and post intentions for your neighbors to deny or allow it. If not allowed, forget about it. If you persist, be able to take the flack after destroying the peace and tranquility of the neighborhood!|
[Open] The flea market is still open and will be until the end of July. It is closed for only two months, August and September, and will be re-open October 1st.
|[Developer Foiled] It’ll be interesting to see what Joe Walsh does with his property at the old Shrimp farm property off US1 now that he cannot build 160 units of affordable housing. I am sure that he bought it with the express intent to do that. Maybe Mote Marine ought to buy it and continue saving the ocean with their aquaculture attempts (in spite of its bad architecture).|
|Most of the world’s troubles are caused by Muslims.|
Meanwhile, back in south Florida
|[“Oldest businesses on Big Pine”] How about when No Name Pub had a brothel up stairs?|
|[FTR on Vacation Rentals] Did you know that there is a bill pending in the Florida House of Representatives that would take away our local ability to regulate vacation rentals? If it passes you can kiss your nice quiet Keys ‘hood goodbye.
The bill, HB 425 is sponsored by Rep. Mike LaRosa of St. Cloud. No surprise, he is a realtor. Would you be surprised to know that those involved in the realty business are the single biggest political contributors here in Monroe county? Would you also be surprised to know that, for the most part, they contribute only to incumbents?
You do have a stake in this issue, and you do have a local representative. Holly Raschein is our local member of the Florida House of Representatives. She is a fine person and a fine legislator. I suggest that you contact her by visiting her web site. Tell her how you feel about losing the quality of life in your neighborhood. Link
|[“Summerland developer foiled”] That’s one! If, we the people, stay together we can stop the degrading and mindless development of Paradise, our home.|
[Honda Hydrogen] In tests, drivers only got 290 miles from the fuel cell, not the 366 Honda promised. That -76 miles is important because there are so few hydrogen filling stations. The car is only available in California by lease and is not for sale. To help you get started Honda is giving leasees $15,000 in hydrogen which cost about the same as gasoline.
|[Windows 10 Creators] Windows 10 free update starts April 11. Review|
[Shane] Jack Shaefer’s classic western novel is adapted by Frances Byrnes. A mysterious horseman, all dressed in black and wearing a six shooter, rides into an isolated valley in Wyoming. Call me Shane, he says. Audio
|[Job Security] Roadwork will never be complete — anywhere. If it were, many people would be out of a job. That’s why as soon as roadwork is done they start all over again in a few years. Does anyone really think installing the aluminum guardrails on top of the concrete sides of the bridges save lives? No. Why didn’t they just make the concrete a few inches higher in the first place instead of spending millions to install the aluminum?|
[Hair Styling] When you’ve been awed by these styles, check the sidebar for more. Wow! Video
|[Quality of Life] Why do we have to look at all the crappy buildings and houses they are building because they are affordable or for research? Mote Marine on Summerland Key will be there forever and no one yelled at it’s Communist-era design. I’m just sick of allowing homely houses to be crowded together just because they are “affordable”. I’d rather have market rate houses that look nice.|
|Deer Ed, Thank you for the sticker! And the token! We got home to Bethlehem, PA from spending 6 weeks on Cudjoe Key the day before a 14” snowstorm hit and I cried inside for a week. Link|
|[Health] This is why you should sleep on your left side. Video|
|[“Ask any veteran about the VA’s health care”] A poster made that comment and I’m glad they did. I’m a veteran that went to the VA Hospital about a serious issue. I have diabetes and didn’t know I had it. I went in with a glucose level within 100 points of going into a sugar induced coma. I was immediately hospitalized and under treatment. The nurses, doctors (who also worked at the local hospitals) were wonderful. They treated me, gave me the training I needed, the medicines I needed, the follow up and continued care I needed. They saved my life. I applaud the VA hospital system and their efforts. They also took care of me when I returned to America with an injury I had during my time in service. I realize in today’s America its trendy to bash anyone when the opportunity arises but I have nothing but kudos for the VA and the way I was treated.
Thank you, VA services. I couldn’t have had better care and service if I went to a regular hospital. In fact, I had some of the very same doctors. Today under their care and advice I am off insulin and am only taking an oral medication every day and my diabetes is under control with no issues and they insist I go in every 6 months to continue their monitoring. That’s my VA experience. They also give my 93-year-old, WW2 veteran, father-in-law excellent care.
|[Diet Tip] A banana is 102 calories but a shot of rum is 85. Choose wisely.|
|[“FTR on term limits”] On Friday a poster who was fed up with the County Commission and the sewers wrote: “Will the taxpayers ever understand that it is those five commissioners that we elected that have given Key Haven residents Shark Key residents, Tom Morgan’s public subdivision, probably? Ocean Reef, and other bubba’s special considerations. The voters have the ability to get rid of these 5 commissioners but history has shown that the voters here keep getting what they deserve.”
The post was spot on. As long as we do not have term limits, those political contributors with the deep pockets will likely get hugs, kisses, and very special treatment from long term incumbents. Big bucks buy big votes. And it buys fawning attention from our elected officials. The longer that politicos are in office, the more they become beholden to their big donors.
One poster wrote that end times are upon us because he/she agrees with this Olde Fart on this issue. I appreciate that, but the time and effort would have been better spent emailing Florida Keys Mosquito Control Authority. You can get each commish’s email address at the following link. I urge you send each an email and let your feelings be known. You can make a difference. Just do it! Link
|President Donald Trump is donating the $78,333.32 salary he has earned so far to the National Park Service. Video|
[Writers Group] Hello, writers! We’ll meet at the Big Pine Key library from 1-3 pm. Optional meet and greet for lunch at Bistro 31 at noon (arrive no later than 11:45 am if you want to order breakfast, 11:30 am even better) Full Menu > Ongoing Events
|[Cuba Not Ready For Prime Time Yet] Cuba, where nothing works, including the people. Unemployment is 48% and of those who do work, 8 out of every 10 work for the government. Before heading to the western part of the island, we spent a night in Havana at the Riviera Classic, the finest hotel at the time. 20 stories with 3 elevators, but only one worked. Contrary to what I found in the rest of the country, my shower only had hot water. Turn the knobs all you want, but you only got hot, scalding water. Link|
[KeysNews vs The Citizen] Is there a difference in the online news between the Citizen and KeysNews other than one is free and the other costs $50? They are both by the same publisher and have the same news, don’t they? Link
|[Sloan] Sloan is home and in court. Link|
|Why people hate junk email I don’t know. If it wasn’t for them I’d have no friends at all!|
|[Haney Suit v Sloan & Deer Ed] Haney lied about not reading my websites when I was reporting on my brother going missing. She was emailing me often about what I was publishing about my brother after he went missing, and I was publishing the text of her emails, and/or summaries. I lost that email account, and she got rid of the websites. Schnauzer wrote quite a few articles about my brother’s death. Within the past year, Mike Tolbert quoted Schanuzer’s view that I was in on my brother’s death. Haney, Tolbert and Schnauzer are in communication, perhaps were all along, perhaps were part of a twisted plot to bring me to Birmingham, and then find some lame excuse to f**k me over. I burned Schnauzer alive, for his misreporting the coroner’s report on Major’s death. I burned Tolbert alive for many things in the past 2 years. I burned Haney alive back in 2010, when she attacked me on the Coconut Telegraph. All that evidence Haney got rid of, when she got my websites taken down. ~Sloan|
|I don’t speak German, but I do speak Bacon and even I can see this is not enough bacon. Video|
|[“ZIKA, ZIKA, ZIKA”] You want to hear about ZIKA? great. Zika has not gone away it is lying in wait just out of your sight. it will be back soon, very soon. A slew of people much brighter than you or I are of that view.
The American Health Association held it’s second annual Zika conference in Washington DC. The purpose of the conference was to bring together the best minds in the USA and to share info and strategies in the war against Zika.
It was the consensus of the meeting that Zika will this year become a pandemic. New research has shown that it is even a bigger health threat than previously believed. There is now evidence that it is a bigger threat to infant mortality than previously thought. It often does not show any symptoms in infants until the infant is over a year old. They’ve learned that adult males that have been infected can be stricken with any number of consequences including Guillan Barre syndrome.
It was just reported that the mosquitos that carry the Zika virus haves appeared in 129 California cities. With cold winter weather the only major obstacle to the Zika virus becoming America’s first pandemic since the 1957 Asian Flu. ZIKA has never left Florida. Just since the first of this year there have been at least 29 reported ZIKA cases, about a third of them in Broward. At least 18 pregnant women have been stricken with disease.
We are fortunate in that Monroe County’s mosquito control authority is considered to be one of the most competent in our nation. Don’t kid yourself, ZIKA is not done with us. Unless we use every weapon and our command we could be in a world of hurt. Don’t forget that the ZIKA vector mosquito also carries Dengue, Yellow, and Chikungunya fevers.
|[“Affordable housing”] Does anyone know the dollar amount difference that County ordinance requires between market rate housing and affordable housing? I think there is only about a two hundred dollar difference.|
[Knots] The rolling hitch allows you to take the strain off another line, chain or rope that is under tension. Video
|[Be A Volunteer] The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary is recruiting new volunteers to help us promote safe and enjoyable public use of the marine environment. We invite interested citizens to join a dedicated and enthusiastic team of volunteers as part of our Ocean Conservation Education Action Network, known as Team OCEAN..
Team OCEAN volunteers join sanctuary staff on our boats at heavily visited reef sites throughout the Keys during peak recreational boating seasons and heavy-traffic holiday weekends. Volunteers inform the public about the sanctuary and its special zones, encourage proper use of sanctuary resources, and provide tips on how to practice basic safety.
Volunteer registration is required to participate in the program. Once registered, individuals may be trained as on-the-water interpreters/educators and join sanctuary staff. Volunteers who own their own boats and meet training requirements may also conduct Team OCEAN outreach from their own boats. Team OCEAN volunteers distributing information to sanctuary visitors. The sanctuary will conduct training sessions for Team OCEAN volunteers in April in the upper and lower keys. Link
[End of Tourist Season Report] I have noticed a subtle change down here lately. Restaurants are less crowded. The post office is no longer a war zone. No one at the WD banged a shopping cart into me, and the parking lot seems a lot safer. The night-time outside light pollution is less and making a left turn on US1 is a little easier. I think the flock has started flying north. I like a lot of them individually, but as a group they are worse than a termite infestation
|NOAA’s Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary will hold a public meeting of the Sanctuary Advisory Council at the Hyatt Place in Marathon, Florida, at 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, April 18, 2017. Members of the public are welcome to attend. The meeting will include presentations on the threat posed to sanctuary resources from abandoned and derelict vessels including updates from the Monroe County Marine Resources Office on the recent multi-agency effort to remove 32 derelict vessels from the Marquesas Keys. The council will also consider action on three issues including selecting a Chair and Vice-Chair, consider recommendations from the Charter Fishing working group charged with providing recommendations to develop a Blue Angler Program, and recommending that the sanctuary use outcomes from a recently completed Shallow Water Boating Impacts Assessment.|
|[“Ask any veteran about the VA’s health care”] I know one veteran who swears by the government’s healthcare for veterans. He doesn’t know what people are complaining about. He said the guys in the transportation van he takes to the Miami VA are mostly satisfied with their care. Maybe Florida’s VA is good and the rest are bad. Or maybe the complainers are asking for the “Moon”. I read where veterans were questioned about their complaints and most of them were unnecessary, dangerous, or illegal requests. Most were complaining about the long wait times for an appointment. My friend says that’s not so much the case in Miami. My private medical care is sometimes hit and miss too. I don’t expect government healthcare to be any better than my private care. I even had to wait a month for my last heart doctor appointment. I thought that sucked. No one should expect the “Moon” from free government services. I know you earned it, but that’s not the point I’m trying to make|
|[Cheyenne and Sioux] When preparing for battle or for death or for social mingling. All of the best clothing was taken along with him when any warrior set out upon a search for conflict. The articles were put into a special bag, ordinarily a beautifully beaded buckskin pouch, but perhaps a rawhide one, and this was slung at one side of his horse. The bag also contained extra moccasins, beaded moccasins, war bonnet, paints, a mirror, special medicine objects, or anything else of this nature. If a battle seemed about to occur, the warrior’s first important preparatory act was to jerk off all his ordinary clothing. He hurriedly got out his fine garments. If he had time to do so he re-braided his hair, painted his face in his own peculiar way, did everything needful to prepare himself for presenting his most splendid personal appearance. That is, he got himself ready to die.
When any of them got into a fight not expected, with no opportunity to dress properly, they usually ran away and avoided close contact and its consequent risks. Enemy people not understanding their ways might suppose them to be cowards because of such flight. In fact, these same apparent cowards might be the bravest of the brave when they have on their good clothes and feel that they may present a respectable appearance if called from this life to meet the Great Spirit.
|[Hanging a Picture Redux] This is worth posting again. Video
I also like the video on folding a t-shirt. Anyone have that link?
|[Remove Crosswalks to Save Gas] Manners is when a big fat guy walks in front of you and you let him pass. Same goes for pedestrians and trucks. Stopping a bunch of vehicles that pollute for one idiot that does not have the sense to let traffic pass before crossing is down right stupid. Wake up, Sheriff, and get rid of those deadly cross walks. Make people obey the laws, especially kids and cell phone morons.|
|[Investing] Has anyone else had a problem with Edward Jones and the way they invest your money? Or am I the only one?|
|[“Starboard stain removal”] To remove a stain from anything you need to know what the stain is. If it is biological the bleach should do the job. One exception can be blood where the iron in the blood is more of a rust stain. For rust you need an acid like Ospho or even toilet bowl cleaner. If the stain is oil based, a detergent like Dawn should do the trick. As for cleaning Starboard which is fairly dense you can also try a scrub pad and a little elbow grease.|
|Shipping containers full of coal ash from China, Poland and India have come into the U.S. through the Port of Virginia as foreign companies find a market for the same industrial waste that America’s utilities are struggling to dispose of. Link|
|I got friend requests on Facebook from these ladies in the last few weeks. I have no idea who they are. But they all want to be my friend! I get these from time to time and I supposed it should be flattering but I kind feel sorry for them. Most of these young ladies apparently have no warm clothes, they have no friends, nothing on their time-lines, and it seems they all pose with eyes half closed and mouth half opened. It’s like maybe they should get together and be friends with each other, they seem to have a lot in common.|
|CUDJOE KEY SEWER PLANT BLUES
They built this plant on Cudjoe Key
They billed us if we used it and
We got crap from Ramrod
|[New Keys Contest] Pick the restaurant that guarantees you will have the best Montezuma’s Revenge after eating there. And the winner is…|
|Well, I’m at the emergency room. Yesterday was not a good day. I decided to go horseback riding – something I haven’t done in many years. It turned out to be a big mistake! I got on the horse and started out slowly, but then we went a little faster; before I knew it, we were going as fast as the horse could go. I couldn’t take the pace and tried to gracefully bail. Unfortunately, my foot got caught in the stirrup and I got dragged by the horse through the feedlot. I couldn’t get the horse to stop and was choking on cow chips (yuck!). Thank goodness the manager at Toys-R-Us came out and unplugged the machine. But he had the nerve to take the rest of my change so I wouldn’t attempt to ride the elephant. What a party pooper. ~Coconuts Bar & Liquor Store, downtown Pine Key|
|[Minimum Wage] It seems the self-value of people today is getting out of hand. A burger flipper wants $15 per hour plus other benefits. A lawn boy wants $100 per lawn. Lawyers demand $500 an hour, and other working persons are wanting to become millionaires weekly. Not on my wallet. It is no wonder the illegals are pushing their way into this over-paid, free-riding, criminal-supporting, dysfunctional country. We will fall like old Rome fell, by class dysfunction and greed. I should have bought my own country in the South Pacific years ago.|
|Why was the Space Shuttle program dropped? It worked over and over again. Now private companies are doing for less.|
|If you go to buy a car, you do your research. After all, if you make a smart choice, you reap the rewards; if you make a bad choice, you suffer the consequences. Over time, most people learn to become better consumers. Not so with politics. How all of us vote, collectively, matters a great deal. But how any one of us votes does not. Imagine a college professor told her class of 210 million students, “Three months from now, we’ll have a final exam. You won’t get your own personal grade. Instead, I’ll average all of your grades together, and everyone will receive the same grade.” No one would bother to study, and the average grade would be an F.
Individual voters tend to vote expressively, to show their commitment to their worldview and team. Voting is more like doing the wave at a sports game than it is like choosing policy.
|I do most of my buying online to get the best prices and save on sales taxes. Trying to get decent prices in the Keys is impossible. Don’t give me that crap about the high cost of shipping here, either.|
|[Fake University] A judge on Friday approved an agreement for President Donald Trump to pay $25 million to settle lawsuits over his now-defunct Trump University, with customers who claimed they were misled by failed promises to teach success in real estate.|
[New Happy Hour] The Galley Grill on Summerland Key is opening for our Happy Hour on April 20, from 5:00-7:00.
|[Why Old People Don’t Get Hired] Job Interview:
Human Resources Manager: What is your greatest weakness?
Old Man: Honesty!
Human Resources Manager: I don’t think honesty is a weakness.
Old Man: I don’t give a crap what you think.
|[Foxy News] In the months since Fox News fired Roger Ailes, and said repeatedly that it would not tolerate behavior that “disrespects women or contributes to an uncomfortable work environment,” it has settled multiple accusations of harassment, — involving Bill O’Reilly. Fox’s parent company, 21st Century Fox, has paid out over $13 million in settlements to 5 women who have accused Mr. O’Reilly of sexual harassment or other inappropriate behavior. At least two of the women have O’Reilly “on tape.”|
|[Joe Legal vs. Jose Illegal] It’s way past time to take a stand for America and Americans! Link|
|[“People go to Florida to die, and California to live”] I’d rather die in Florida than live in California.|
Life lessons for an awesome retirement. Link
|[“Sanctuary cities”] Ask Mexico how many sanctuary cities it has for illegal Americans. Don’t be standing to close to the guy because he’s going to spit on you as he starts laughing|
[Mental Health] The 25th Amendment, explained how a president can be declared unfit to serve. If the VP and Cabinet conclude a president is unwell, they can legally do something about it. Link
|Whatever happened to “my home is my castle“? Now with Key West turning into a Sanctuary City and all the riff raff that will be coming here to free-load off us working locals, what are we to do? Lock and load? or just move the hell out and try to fine another home without all the bleeding-heart sissy lovers and trash invaders? Paradise is lost for good to the inept and payolas|
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