Today on Context Florida: Jacksonville judge, Cuba, Brendan Eich and blurred lines

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Today on Context Florida:

Gov. Rick Scott has not yet cancelled an election and announced that he, not the voters, would select their new state senator or representative, but Martin Dyckman notes that something of the same nature is happening with a circuit judgeship in Jacksonville. It does not pass the smell test either, Dyckman adds.

Charlie Crist wants to lift the 53-year-old U.S. trade embargo on Cuba. According to Stephen Goldstein, Crist has not flipped on the Cuban government; he just says that the embargo has not worked. Pragmatic, the former governor points to the economic benefits Florida businesses and individuals would reap, and he is appealing to the evolving mainstream on Cuba.

Former state Sen. John Grant believes the resignation of former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich over his position on California’s Proposition 8 — opposing same-sex marriage — is an example of the left’s “new fascism.” Regardless of your views on marriage, any American who values the First Amendment should be deeply troubled that Eich was essentially driven from his job because of his personal beliefs.

The adage that “You get what you pay for” sure does hold true in Florida’s political and public policy circles, writes Daniel Tilson. Give a bunch of rich white guys the green light to unite and feel authoritative in groups such as the Legislature, Chamber of Commerce and Council of 100, and the line between public and private interests blurs.

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Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.