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Gov. Rick Scott’s glass is half full

Governor continues campaign of feel-good PR, despite the fact that the numbers show that most of our glasses are still half-empty

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“Each month we continue to distance ourselves from the national unemployment rate and it is clear we are succeeding in growing opportunities for Florida families to pursue the American dream,” Scott said in a statement, alluding to the national unemployment rate of 7.6 percent and how we’re so much better that we should just secede already. There wasn’t much mention of the fact that there were actually 6,200 fewer people employed in the state month-to-month, per the state’s own Department of Economic Opportunity and an actual payroll analysis, but why would there be?

Similarly, on the housing front, Scott’s office seems to be taking some credit for a spike in new listings and new sales of single-family homes, despite the fact that there are clearly other factors at work than the governor’s crooked smile and its resulting income security for middle class residents. For one, there’s a race to get into homes before national interest rates go up, as they are expected to this year. Also, as the Florida Current reports, almost half of the sales of single-family homes being touted are cash sales, which would seem to indicate that there’s more than a little bit of opportunistic flipping and prospecting going on among the wealthy class. But slightly more concerning is the fact that Florida holds one-third of national burden of abandoned foreclosure homes – 55,503 in the state, with 5,569 of those right here in Orlando. Earlier this month, Gov. Scott signed into law House Bill 87 as a means of fast-tracking foreclosures, because this is starting to look bad, and we’re probably better off trading human decency for better numbers. Look, a mountain! That’s how you win an election.

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