Sunday, July 10, 2016


Misguided, misanthropic, well-connected below-market City of St. Augustine commercial property lessee DAVID GEITHMAN -- ex-Mayor WEEKS' father in law-- delivers another unctuous oleaginous lecture in The St. Augustine Record, where GEITHMAN's wife works in inside sales.

Father-in-law of ex-Mayor CLAUDE LEONARD WEEKS, JR. a/k/a "LEN WEEKS," Op-Ed writer Dr. DAVID TRESCOTT GEITHMAN, Ph.D. benefits from one of those below-market rate City of St. Augustine City lease.

Linked-in lists him as an owner-manager of a Lightner Museum Courtyard antique store at 75 King Street, Churchill & acroix Antiquaire.

City records show DAVID TRESCOTT GEITHMAN pays a mere $564.81 for 430 square feet (sweetheart deal with City Manager WILLIAM BRUCE HARRISS' minions in 2009, with C.P.I. adjustments; lease expires 2018).

DAVID TRESCOTT GEITHMAN needs to remember the old economic wisdom of Milton Friedman: "There's no such thing as a free lunch."

And in the words of JFK's Ambassador to India, acerbic descriptive economist John Kenneth Galbraith, "the most important piece of wisdom in economics is knowing what you do not know." He also wrote that "the 'free market' is a snare and a delusion." He was right on both counts.

St. Augustine Record articles and columns reveal that GEITHMAN is a global warming denier, right-wing Republican and married in Las Vegas in 2011 to a St. Augustine Record inside sales employee.

God bless his heart!

Fancying himself an expert witness (or witless), GEITHMAN was guilty in 2014 of abusing his UF Economics Ph.D., not disclosing his City lease deal, making darkly emotional and manipulative arguments for a subsidy to his antique business hobby and the businesses of his pals, perhaps including Mayor JOSEPH LESTER BOLES, JR. and ex-Mayor CLAUDE LEONARD WEEKS, Jr., perhaps among his classmates at UF.

We don't need any more big city parking garages in our small historic downtown, Professor DAVID TRESCOTT GEITHMAN.

The witness (or witless) is excused.

Yes, DAVID GEITHMAN is ex-Mayor of St. Augustine LEN WEEKS' father-in-law, beneficiary of a below-market rate lease for prime first-floor Lightner Museum property (approx. $500/month from the City of St. Augustine, who in prior columns supported more city-funded parking garages. Ex-professor of Economics at Rutgers, father-in-law of the energumen who drove artists and musicians from our streets and who destroyed 211-year old Don Pedro Fornells House, working without permits, fined only $3600 by our Code Enforcement Board (after which he was publicly hugged by estimable City Attorney ISABELLE CHRISTINE LOPEZ, who never saw a developer she did not cater to): what nonsense!

Guest Column: Entitlement is trumping equality
Posted: July 10, 2016 - 12:02am

By David T. Geithman
St. Augustine
America is not a “natural” nation in the sense of having a strong common ethnic or racial background or a sense of long shared history or a set of traditions embraced by almost everyone.

The world has other multiethnic and/or multiracial states that are also successful and prosperous, from Switzerland to Singapore. The common ingredient is the existence of a successful social/economic compact making their ethnic, religious, or cultural diversity a basis of economic and social strength, not a source of political instability. This successful compact rests on the people’s practical experience of a just government, fair and open political processes and faith in economic opportunity open to all, regardless of religious, ethnic or racial background.

In our nation’s relatively short history, various “totems” have emerged whose purpose is about affirming America’s beneficent political compact: the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Gettysburg Address and, more recently, various acts of Congress and Supreme Court decisions underscoring individuals’ voting and other civil rights and an equality of economic opportunity. Each historic moment was one step in a series of steps creating or reaffirming government’s moral legitimacy with its people under the principle of individual, personal liberty and opportunity.

Today that moral legitimacy is under political attack through allegations that government has allowed, even colluded with, private wealth to “stack the deck,” “tilt the playing field” or “rig the game” against everyone else. It is a particularly dangerous political charge because it goes to the heart of the moral standing of our government and our underlying faith in equality of opportunity. These attacks exist despite countless legal protections against discrimination, guarantees of equal opportunity, plus the presence of several thousand lawyers at the U.S. Department of Justice and 50 state Attorneys General, each one eager to pursue any discrimination or inequality case with any basis of merit.

To help make the allegations stick, it has been necessary to redefine equality of opportunity away from its original meaning to its new meaning. Its original meaning is, or was, government’s responsibility to ensure equal preparedness for all at the beginning of the race for economic well-being in a competitive world: a world, not incidentally, dominated by private sector firms, entrepreneurs, workers, managers, landlords and capitalists.

The new meaning is government’s responsibility to ensure equal outcomes at the end of the race for economic well-being; indeed, to end the very existence of a competitive race for economic well-being, replacing it with a nation dominated by a government (and bureaucracy) reflective of a spirit of entitlement. Rather than equality anchored in personal individual liberty, it is redefined in terms of identity politics, political correctness and, of course, victimhood.

Our educational system, from elementary school through college, has enthusiastically cooperated in this redefinition by utterly failing to teach vital historic events and economic principles that have created and affirmed the moral superiority of government based on personal liberty, private enterprise, free markets and the freedom of individuals operating in them.

Instead, schools now teach the moral superiority of government (and bureaucracy) that values income redistribution rather than earning income and equality of outcomes rather than equality of opportunity.

The fact that private sector decision-making allocates society’s resources more efficiently, maximizes its economic growth and creates more wealth and income hardly stirs interest in our schools and colleges. America’s need to become more competitive and dynamic for the sake of simple survival in an increasingly globalized world economy seems so, well, “old school.”

Geithman earned a Ph.D. in economics at the UF and subsequently taught, researched, and published in the areas of economic theory and policy for 50 years.

johnfbrinson 07/10/16 - 06:19 am 41Excellent column
One of my grandsons is visiting, and told us of a couple of his Freshman year college courses (not in Florida.) One was about "diversity" emphasizing everybody's "right" to be different. No wonder our college kids don't see a unique American culture. Then there was a course in "Black Studies" that taught the kids that whites have always mistreated blacks and that blacks don't have a chance in America. No wonder we have a terrible race problem today.

The leading voice for racial harmony should be our President, but instead he fans the flames of black anger with his lecture about Jim Crow laws and his total lack of emotion when speaking about the police murdered in Dallas. Obama has set race relations back 50 years. What a shame and disgrace.

Luckily, my grandson's economics course taught him that there is no such thing as "free stuff." That "free stuff" handed out by the government is paid for by taking money from productive citizens and businesses and handing it out to the "entitled."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Obviously, the author and Mr. Brinson have little or no knowledge of what it means to be marginalized.