Don't Be Discouraged by Yul Nivver, Spouting "You'll Never" -- American History Teaches That Yul Nivver is Nearly Always Wrong!
(reprinted, adapted and updated from September 2, 2007 and September 18, 2014 www.cleanupcityofstaugustine.blogspot.com)
Mayor JOSEPH LESTER BOLES, JR.: less than 40% of the vote in primary -- 60.4% voted against him. His law license was suspended in 2023 for unethical conduct concerning senior citizen wills. He has resigned as President of the Council on Aging..
City Manager WILLIAM BRUCE HARRISS was overthrown by "We, The People" after years of environmental and historic devastation under his maladministration, 1998-2010.
"The only thing we have to fear is, fear itself."
Franklin Delano Roosevelt, March 4, 1933
"We The People" have won more than 75 progressive victories in St. Augustine and St. Johns County since 2005.
Optimists are winning and pessimists are losing.
St. Augustine elected a reform mayor, who served for 1550 days, 2014-2019.
Local corruption has been exposed by Folio Weekly, The New York Times, PBS Frontline, NBC News Dateline, ABC News Good Morning America, and soon CNN, Anderson Cooper and Nancy Grace. The Michelle O'Connell case, like the no-bid mosquito control helicopter before it, shows how corrupt St. Johns County has become under one-party Republican misrule.
Our American Founders originated the idea of "future preference": as expressed by our Georgetown University School of Foreign History Professor Carroll Quigley (whom Bill Clinton quoted in his 1992 acceptance speech). Americans believe that we can make a better future for future generations. Ours was the first nation in world history to have this idea, which distinguishes Americans from all of history's rotten, corrupt monarchies.
But Americans' core beliefs, including "future preference," were shaken and challenged by a wrecking crew approach to the Constitution, Bill of Rights, limited government and the rule of law. FDR taught us to oppose "organized money" as much as an "organized mob."
Organized money hires lobbyists to engage in sneak attacks on all of America's great progressive victories, including President Theodore Roosevelt's legacy of antitrust laws and his Square Deal as well as the New Deal, Fair Deal and Great Society. The intentional wrongs and grievous errors of this wrecking crew are as innumerable as the molecules of water in the oceans.
Unlike our Founders, Big Money defenders like disgraced ex-Mayor JOSEPH LESTER BOLES, JR. just don't like average people.
They never met a big corporation or a wealthy person they didn't cater to and serve amiably. They share the view of Hobbes and other "nattering nabobs of negativism" -- a misanthropic hatred of humankind.
From City Hall to the County Commission Taj Mahal to Tallahassee skyscraper to the U.S. Capitol, t hey steep the Nation in their pessimism, and fight all things progressive. Like the National Association of Manufacturers, they fight every decent legislative proposal every offered.
"Whatever you do to the least of my brothers, that you do unto me" said Jesus Christ.
There are who exploit and cause misery, like City former City Manager WILLIAM B. HARRISS, who put the contents of the old city dump into our Old City Reservoir, kicked the artists and entertainers off of St. George Street, empowered tree-killing, wetland-killing speculators like ROBERT MICHAEL GRAUBARD. HARRISS smirked at reformers, thinking he would always have five Commissioners' votes in his hip pocket and the names of 300 Republicans who he would call anytime things don't go HARRISS' way.
Those days are over.
HARRISS' one-time hey-boy, John Patrick Regan, P.E is now City Manager, and has reformed some, but not enough. His last day is June 2, 2023. Salud!
HARRISS' hand-picked City Attorney, RONALD WAYNE BROWN, retired, replaced by his acolyte, ISABELLE CHRISTIAN WHITEHURST.
HARRISS' other hey-boy, Mayor JOSEPH LESTER BOLES, JR., was retired by the voters in 2014, replaced by Nancy Shaver, who served honorably for 1550 days until her stroke in 2019.
Instead of working for a Living Wage and other measures to grow the economy and solve poverty, some cynics in our Nation's Oldest (European-founded) City seek to cadge votes the old-fashioned way - - by marginalizing poor people here in St. Augustine. As President Bill Clinton once said, "they're themming us to death." The notion of marginalizing homeless poor people -- and calling them "bums" -- is akin to the fascist political tactics that led to the concentration camps in Germany and the killing fields in Cambodia.
The owners and controllers are constantly struggling to divert our attention from their crimes.
The discouragers have their own vocabulary to keep people passive, starting at an early age. They tell children, "you can't fight City Hall," even though our American Founders disagreed with such hierarchical concepts.
They also frequently discourage people with the negative construct "You'll Never!"
"You'll Never" is the doom-and-gloom killer of dreams, the discourager of reforms and the denier of truth.
Imagine this "You'll Never" construct with human form and a name -- let's call him or her "Yul Nivver" (perhaps he looks a bit like the late Yul Brynner, who played the angry absolute monarch of Siam in the play and movie of "The King and I.:\").
Like the King of Siam played so well by Yul Brynner, Yul Nivver is a "cognitive miser."
Yul Nivver "knows not that he knows not that he knows not."
Yul Nivver is the sour- apple teacher who says to a high schooler, "you'll never" get into a first-rate college or become a musician -- he's the misogynist who discourages women students from pursuing their dreams, and subjects St. Johns County girl students to discriminatory dress codes, violating Title IX and resulting in a 2023 investigation by U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights.
Yul Nivver is the cynic who says to grownups, "you'll never" overthrow a corrupt political regime, whether at home or abroad.
Yul Nivver is the gnome who said to Americans, "you'll never" reform health care -- though every other Western nation has followed the example of Bismarck's Germany (in the 1880s) and provided decent health care for all citizens.
Yul Nivver is a know-it-all who sews unhappiness.
Yul Nivver is an anti-literate energumen who wants to bring everyone down to his level of fear and gloominess.
Perhaps Yul Nivver is clinically depressed and wants everyone else to be depressed with him.
Yul Nivver doesn't think very much. That's because Yul Nivver doesn't read too much. Mostly, Yul Nivver watches FOX News. Yul Nivver emotes, always with negative emotions.
In short, Yul Nivver is no fun to be around.
Invoking a line from George Bernard Shaw, Senator Robert Kennedy said, "some [people] see things as they are and say why. I see things that never were and say, 'why not?'"
Yul Nivver is a killjoy and a mocker and a meddler. Yul Nivver is against Gay rights, hates Gay marriage and wants everyone to be miserable, like him. The Supreme Court has repeatedly ruled for LGBTQ rights, most recently by 6-3 vote.
If Yul Nivver were taken seriously, Americans would never have defeated Nazism and Communism and Apartheid.
If Yul Nivver were taken seriously, there would be no autos with safety glass, seatbelts or airbags.
If Yul Nivver were taken seriously, there would still be major coal mine disasters killing hundreds of miners at a time.
If Yul Nivver were taken seriously, Americans would not have stopped tobacco companies from marketing their products to children, for generations raised watching Bette Davis and other move stars smoke, part of the corrupt Hollywood system of "product placements" dismantled by the tobacco settlement. (Tobacco killed the actor Yul Brynner, who filmed a TV commercial before he died).
If Americans heeded Yul Nivver, we wouldn't have abolished child labor, sweatshops and Yellow Dog contracts; there would be no National Labor Relations Act, no minimum wage laws, no eight hour day, no laws protecting workers safety, no free democratic trade unions and no laws against discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations and education. On this Memorial Day, we remember Yul Nivver and know that we've defeated him, again and again -- it's part of our civilization that progressives unite and defeat tyrants all the time.
If Yul Nivver were in control, there would be no environmental laws and no Foreign Corrupt Practices Act making it a crime for American corporations to bribe foreign officials.
In 1981, I was editor of a small weekly newspaper in East Tennessee, the Appalachian Observer. Local residents had seven generations of ancestors. Time had tormented their beautiful mountains, with stripmining, political corruption and environmental pollution from Oak Ridge nuclear weapons plants. Cynicism abounded.
Yul Nivver was there. Yul Nivver said we'd never eject a crooked school superintendent, imprison a crooked Sheriff, or expose the pollution by the Department of Energy and Union Carbide in Oak Ridge.
Yul Nivver was wrong on all three counts.
We did it. Working together, our newspaper and local activists transformed the place. A referendum was passed for election of the school superintendent, sending 13-year veteran school dictator PAUL EUGENE BOSTIC, SR. to well- deserved retirement. Activists encouraged Sheriff's deputies to blow the whistle to the FBI and U.S. Attorney, helping send corrupt Sheriff DENNIS O. TROTTER to federal prison (entrenched TROTTER was twice Tennessee Sheriff of the Year). Activists helped win declassification of long-secret pollution, exposing the largest mercury pollution event in world history -- bigger than Minimata in Japan -- helping spur cleanup of U.S. nuclear weapons plants everywhere.
Again, Yul Nivver was wrong on all three counts.
In 2005, our City of St. Augustine City Commissioners voted 3-2 to reject Rainbow flags on our Bridge of Lions -- kicking Gays and Lesbians in the teeth for the third time -- though every other local group was allowed to fly their flags to promote and commemorate history. After the City's May 23, 2005 vote, Yul Nivver made his inevitable appearance: "You'll never" lost. We got a federal court to overturn the City's decision, despite what loutish louche yahoo Yul Nivver and the City of St. Augustine and its henchmen said to federal court.
Foreign-funded real estate speculators are ruining our beautiful seaside community. I've drafted a proposed St. Augustine National Historical Park, Seashore and Scenic Coastal Highway . Maurine Boles, Andrew Young and ex-Sheriff David Shoar all loved the idea.
Inevitably, Yul Nivver has already weighed in.
Though his own mother Maureen Boles supported the idea, crabbed St. Augustine expMayor JOSEPH LEROY BOLES, JR. once said he doesn't want to "federalize" historic preservation. A member of the federal St. Augustine 450th Commemoration Commission, BOLES has never joined his mother, Andrew Young and Sheriff David Shoar in supporting the park.
BOLES' no-bid lease business partner, ex-Mayor CLAUDE LEONARD WEEKS, JR. likewise is standing in the schoolhouse door, standing in the way of a National Historical Park and National Seashore.
WEEKS was apparently driving the bus, speaking for BOLES when Folio Weekly called about their $2-3 million profit from a no-bid lease of 81 St. George Street.
BOLES and WEEKS sawthe 450th as a way to make money for themselves and their cronies, not to elevate history teaching and preservation of our history and nature.
What short-sighted selfish people.
Yul Nivver has said there will be no national park, seashore and scenic highway like those elsewhere in our land, inflicting a too-modest vision for the 500th anniversary of Florida (2013) and the 450th birthday of St. Augustine (2015).
Let them squirt wine on each other, as in one disgusting celebration BOLES sponsored in our Plaza de la Constitucion.
Let them eat cupcakes.
BOLES never met a developer he was not willing to kiss up to -- BOLES won less than 40% of the vote in the August 26, 2014 primary election. BOLES' opponent in the 2014 general election is the real deal -- an elegant lady who knows management skills and listens to the people.
Nancy Shaver was is a great campaigner, and BOLES was left quaking in his Gucci loafers.
In 1944, my mother heard FDR speak at Franklin Field in Philadelphia: as FDR said, "I'm an old campaigner, and I love a good fight."
Yul Nivver doesn't have a chance, folks, because hope and history are on our side.
2024 is the time to fight corruption, not by half-measures or by being mealy-mouthed, but by talking sense to the people of our city, county, state and nation.
Hapless cronies like JOSEPH LESTER BOLES, Jr. have been thrown out of office, on their uncaring ears.
We will help melt Yul Nivver's heart, just like the King of Siam yielded at the end of "The King and I," on his deathbed signalling his son that absolutism doesn't work. Show Yul Nivver the way and the wave of the future.
As Robert Kennedy said in South Africa, "it is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped. Each time a person stands up for an ideal or stands up for the rights of others, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples create a current that can wipe out the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance."
It is up to us. What do you reckon?