Thursday December 22, 2005

Prune Juice

[Contributed by Steve Klotz]

Speaking of phony science and cornholing the citizenry, how’s that war against citrus canker going? Are we consumers, now paying a buck a grapefruit, still taking the weight to keep Florida agribusiness profitable?

Stop the presses! A commercial grower has filed suit to stop tree removal? The Haines city grower’s lawyer filed papers yesterday, noting that the canker eradication law, ‘’no longer bears a reasonable and substantial relationship to the preservation of the Florida citrus industry, but simply constitutes a taking without a public purpose and without compensation.”

The reason for this Pauline conversion: the grower in question now faces losing his own trees. Blaming Wilma for blowing canker spores all over the state, including into his own groves, his own uninfected-but-within-1900-feet-of-infected trees are slated for destruction. And with his own ass in the hot seat, he’s had a change of heart.

“It was one thing to have everybody else’s trees torn out,” observed an industry spokesman. “Particularly when it was mostly those Dade County immigrant bastards. But when it’s our people, our trees, well, it’s a different ball game, now!”

It was never about canker per se. From the get-go it was all about money, specifically powerful upstate Republican money, not to mention Asplundh tree service and Walmart, who got the corporate welfare cash for handling the voucher program (which collapsed, by the way).

Yeah, it sucks and yes it’s corrupt but: that’s Florida. Hold your nose and wish this lawyer well, because this action might stop the arboreal assassins’ chainsaws once and for all.

[Previously: Fruit loops]

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  1. Kent Standit    Thu Dec 22, 03:18 PM #  

    What does this have to do with prune juice?

  2. Biscayne Bystander    Fri Dec 23, 12:52 AM #  

    Great article Steve.

  3. Miami Harold    Tue Dec 27, 05:17 PM #  

    The gall of these people is astounding.

    The snap their fingers and thousands of south Florida homeowners

    have their trees ripped out and destroyed.

    Their argument is, it’s strictly business,

    and even those of us who aren’t actually IN that business

    need to share the cost of doing it…….

    But when it gets closer to home, all of a sudden,

    the “taking” argument makes sense to them.

    Better a sick tree than no tree.

    Their thinking itself is sick.

    Can we declare the growers themselves as disease-carriers

    and have any within 1900 feet of non-growers

    torn out by the roots, wood-chipped, and dumped in the landfill?

    It’s strictly business, you know.

  4. Merkin    Thu Dec 29, 03:51 PM #  

    Fact is, there’s too much citrus production in this country now, which means we end up subsidizing the industry with tax dollars. A few million acres fewer would actually be a good thing, and if canker is the cause, fine. Tear out some groves and build roads and condos. It’s what’s best for the industry both here and abroad, for Florida and its residents, and for the USA.

  5. Gypsy Ed Romany    Tue Jan 10, 09:20 PM #  

    Well well, looky here.

    As my grandmother used to say (in Hungarian) “It all depends whose ox is gored.”

    (She said a lot of other things, too, but none appropriate for a family blog.)