Today on Context Florida: State of State accountability, Panhandle, and “heroes” & “zeroes” in pot debate

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Today on Context Florida: Rick Scott’s State of the State address was riddled with inaccuracies and devoid of accountability, says Daniel Tilson. The governor did not touch upon the growing income inequality, stagnant wages. reduced buying power and declining average household wages.

There is a little more of Florida west of Panama City, writes Shannon Nickinson, although you wouldn’t know it in Rick Scott’s State of the State address. Pensacola and Escambia County deserve to be part of the conversation in Tallahassee, and those voices need to be heard.

Rick Outzen also talks about how the Panhandle often feels like the “redheaded stepchild” of Florida, one who has to share legislative power with the rest of the state. Instead of a strong advocate in Tallahassee, the westernmost counties simply just re-elect incumbents, and those living in the counties on the Florida-Alabama line felt slighted.

Reason and emotion are the two drivers of decision-making, says Gary Stein, so it is not surprising that advocates for and against medical marijuana try to appeal to both the head and the heart. The people seeking facts and solutions are “heroes”; the others are “zeros.”

Visit Context Florida to dig in.

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.