Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Crossing Matanzas River

My heart leaps with joy whenever I cross the Matanzas River on the Mickler-O'Connell Bridge (SR 312).  Here's why

Going west, one looks to the right from the Mickler-O'Connell SR 312 Bridge and sees the protected green space and tidal marsh, the result of a 4-1 City Commission victory wrought by Nancy Shaver, Blake Souder, Judith Seraphin, Cash McVay and other activists.  The point will be protected as a park forever, rejecting the JOHN PATRICK REGANs of the world, who wanted to build a Children's Museum and Aquarium on top of 35 feet of undulating garbage, violating 2011 FDEP guidelines. Only then-Commissioner DONALD CRICHLOW (R-Proctorville) voted against it.  Then-Mayor Joseph Boles joined Commissioners Nancy Sikes-Kline, Leanna Freeman and Roxanne Horvath in supporting preservation.  We, the People won again: so-called Riberia Pointe (sic) a/k/a Punta del Buena Esperanza from the 1600s, will be preserved as city parkland forever.

Going east, one looks to the right from the Mickler-O'Connell SR 312 Bridge and sees Fish Island.  A wicked evil developer (yet another secretive louche Limited Liability Company, or LLC) demanded to put a 1200 foot boat dock there, along with condos.  City Commissioners at first heeded attorney Ralf Brooks and clients Ken and Lauren Bryan, Becky Greenburg et al.  Commissioners voted against the Fish Island before it voted for it, folding like a cheap suit in the face of blowhard litigation threats and chicanery by . Then, miracle of miracles, the market killed the crooked deal and its development approvals died.  Now thanks to the North Florida Land Trust, there is a conservation easement and soon, perhaps the bones of JESSE FISH, Florida's first crooked realtor, will be preserved along with his slaves and plantation.   (JESSE FISH allegedly became wealthier by pocketing funds from the sale of Spanish residents' homes after they left and the British arrived in 1763, and then did the same thing pocketing funds from the sale of British residents' homes after they left in 1784 and the British returned.)(FISH's profiteering the the comings and goings of British and Spanish people was the result of two successive Treaties of Paris resolving the Seven Years War and the American Revolutionary War, where St. Augustine changed hands twice in 21 years).

"The ground of liberty is to be gained by inches.  We must be contented to secure what we can get from time to time and eternally press forward for what is yet to get.  It takes time to persuade [people] to do even what is for their own good." -- Thomas Jefferson, Monticello, January 27, 1790, to Rev. Charles Clay.

Greedy Florida developers constantly destroy what we love about Florida.  They are pests.

Greedy Florida developers have met their match in St. Augustine, where we stand up for our own and we preserve and protect our precious cultural, environmental and historic heritage.  Grifters, greedheads and dodgy LLCs, beware.  This will one day be a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site, and we don't cotton to Temple Destroyers (in John Muir's words).

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