Thursday, October 07, 2010

Sept 20, 2010

Dear Sis~

A prisoner in the cell above me, David Johnston, died of a heart attack today.  He was 50 years old with a history of heart problems.  Needless to say, he was not getting any real medical treatment here.  As I've told you many times, if a prisoner gets really ill here, he'll just die.  I've seen many guys die in this prison from medical conditions which the so-called doctors have refused to treat, or treated incompletely.  Johnston was on the row since June 1984, over 26 years.  Actually, he had an "active death warrant".  Gov. Crist signed his death warrant about 8 or 9 months ago, but he got a last-minute stay of execution.  Ever since then, he's technically had an "active warrant", lacking only a date.  At any rate, that's one death row prisoner the executioner won't be getting a hold of.  I guess that counts for some sort of victory, from Johnston's perspective, at least not on this 3-dimensional plane...

We have an interesting gubernatorial election coming up next month.  Alex Sink, the current chief financial officer (a cabinet-level post in Florida) is the (female) Democratic nominee; Rick Scott, the multimillionaire businessman, whom nobody ever heard of until 6 months ago, is the far-right Republican nominee.  Scott was (still is) the CEO if a huge corporation which owns a chain of hospitals.  That corporation was found guilty of a $1.3 Billion Medicare fraud here in Florida.  Scott challenged Bill McCollum, the current Attorney General of Florida and the putative Republican choice, in the Republican primary, and surprisingly defeated him.  It was a very nasty campaign, lots of mud slinging by both sides.  McCollum has zero charisma or presence, he's very bland and unimaginative, and a classic career politician (he spent years in the US House of Representatives where he led the impeachment effort against President Clinton).  He thought the governorship was his by divine right simply because he was a Republican.  He was the choice of the party big wigs (they knew he's be an easily manipulated puppet, doing the bidding of big-money corporate interests). Rick Scott effectively labeled him as the career politician he is and Scott promised to be "more conservative" than McCollum, which is saying a lot.  Usually in Florida, all you need to do in order to win state-wide election is to portray yourself as more conservative than your opponent.  Anyway, I'm rooting for Alex Sink, who is very qualified and competent and will, I believe, make an excellent governor.  Florida has never had a female governor, and it's past time we had one.  I'm very pro-female when it comes to political leaders; they bring a much more common sense perspective to the arena, they are more about finding solutions to problems than most male politicians.  America is far behind the rest of the industrial west when it comes to the percentage of female political leaders, and it's our loss...

Well, Sis, that's about it from here.  I'm enjoying some rare leisure time, no legal work to do for a change, just catching up on some long-postponed reading.  Give the dogs a tummy rub for me (how I miss the company of dogs!) and give yourself a big hug!