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Free Speech

Tentative Thoughts on the Florida Repeal of Disney's Special Government District

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The Florida Legislature has voted to repeal a statute that created a special government district (the Reedy Creek Improvement District) that it had set up in 1967 for Disney, and the Governor is apparently set to sign it. To quote the New York Times (Brooks Barnes),

[The district] was put together in 1967 and essentially allows the megaresort, which employs roughly 80,000 people, to function as its own municipal government…. [The district] gives the company considerable control over the planning and permitting process for construction on its 25,000-acre property, including road building. Reedy Creek also levies taxes on Disney to pay for the resort's own fire and medical response battalions, among other services. Disney World even generates some of its own electricity through Reedy Creek.

The reason for the repeal appears to be Disney's prominent opposition to the Florida law that restricts "classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity … in kindergarten through grade 3 or in a manner that is not age appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards." Is it constitutional for Florida to do this?

[1.] First, the case against: Government decisions that retaliate against people or organizations based on their speech are often unconstitutional. Board of Comm'rs v. Umbehr (1996), for instance, held that the government generally can't deny contracts to a contractor because of the contractor's First Amendment activities. And some appellate decisions have held that withdrawal of legal advertising from a newspaper because the government doesn't like the newspaper's editorial positions violates the First Amendment.

Likewise, the government can't generally fire employees because of their speech or political activity, at least unless the disruption caused by the employee's actions outweighs the employee's free speech rights (whatever exactly that means). Pickering v. Bd. of Ed. (1968). And the government can't strip people of tax exemptions or other benefits based on their speech or political activity. Speiser v. Randall (1958).

[2.] But here's a twist: What Florida is planning to withdraw from Disney is essentially a form of government power that Disney had been specially granted—Disney's ability to effectively run this special district (as I understand it does), with the legal authority this entails under state law. And if we follow the employment analogy, officials exercising political power are generally not protected from retaliation by other political figures, at least when the retaliation consists of benefits conferred by the other political figures in the first place.

If, for instance, a committee chairman switches parties (or otherwise offends party leadership with his political positions), he could be stripped of the powers that his colleagues have given him, even if a low-level government employee can't be. Likewise if a state cabinet member who has been chosen by a governor is removed from office by the governor (assuming state law allows such removals) based on the cabinet member's political speech. I take it that when a city council appoints a mayor or a city manager, it can (if state law so allows) remove that official as well, including based on the official's speech or other political activity.

To be sure, Disney isn't exactly a political official. (I agree that corporations have First Amendment rights, but that doesn't mean they can be elected to office.) But the Legislature had in effect given it a particular form of political power, which it now seeks to withdraw. That strikes me as a potentially relevant analogy.

[3.] There's also a broader question, which isn't limited to grants and withdrawals of political power. Umbehr and similar precedents involved the sorts of contracts (there, for trash disposal) that pretty any much company could bid for, and that the government would give to someone else if it denied the contracts to the challenger; likewise for the typical government employment situation. Other benefits, like various kinds of tax exemptions, are likewise generally available to a wide range of people.

What makes this case unusual is that this is an extraordinary status that Disney got because it was Disney, and withdrawing that status would simply put Disney in the same position as other companies in that geographical area, and the bulk of other companies in Florida. (There are other special districts in Florida, but my sense is that few of them were set up precisely to be controlled by a particular commercial enterprise.) Even apart from the political nature of the district, might the Legislature have the power to take away such extraordinary benefits, even based on the beneficiary corporation's speech?

To give an analogy, various state laws give special treatment to the NRA, e.g., providing that shooting range standards "shall be no more stringent than national rifle association standards." (Ohio) or that county ranges be set up in part for "encouraging marksmanship by permitting National Rifle Association sanctioned or approved pistol matches to be held at such range" (Minnesota). Some of these laws were passed when the NRA was less politically active than it has been recently. Others might have been passed when the party in control of the legislature liked NRA's politics.

Say that the state legislature decides that it doesn't like the NRA any more, because of the NRA's position on gun control laws, and decides to just eliminate this special treatment. I'm inclined to say that the legislature could do so.

One other analogy might be Ysursa v. Pocatello Educ. Ass'n (2009). There, government employees had been able to authorize payroll deductions not just for general union dues but also for union political activities. In 2003, the Idaho Legislature banned deductions for union political activities (employees could still pay the union directly, but not through the deductions, which were quite valuable to the union).

Presumably this was motivated in part by legislative disagreement with unions' political positions (though the Court didn't discuss the motivation in detail, and it did note in a footnote that the parties hadn't "raised any issue of viewpoint discrimination")—after all, if the majority of the legislature liked the unions' positions, it seems unlikely that they would have enacted a law that would have thus limited union power. But the Court upheld the change: "Idaho does not suppress political speech but simply declines to promote it through public employer checkoffs for political activities." Likewise, now that Disney has increased its political role in Florida politics, it may be that the Florida Legislature may conclude that it doesn't want to give Disney special benefits that other entities don't get.

But none of these analogies, of course, are squarely on point; and I know of no other precedents that dispose of the matter. So for now I just wanted to lay out the possible approaches; I'd love to hear if there are other important cases or arguments that I've missed here.

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  1. Interesting how Liberals are all for ending special benefits for corporations, until Republicans do it.

    1. Full cancel culture should visit the servants of the Chinese Commie Party. Disney is totally silent in China when it condemns girly men. The denier Volokh is asking for legal pathways to attack Florida's defense of parental involvment in sex education and in racism indoctrination by leftist controlling our schools. Reason is Koch Brothers. So that is not surprising.

      1. The Democrat Party has conducted a relentless campaign of lawfare, filled with frivolous investigations to harass, and with the criminalization of political speech. They are the internal enemy and the servants of the Chinese Commie Party. Republicans have yet to reply in kind and in quantity. The enemy should prepare for forbearance to end soon.

        1. The scumbag lawyer profession has been the tool of the Democrat Party in its internal warfare against our nation. All PC is case, and judge have been the thugs who have bullied all agencies to impose sicko and degenerate policies, attacking our American Way of Life. The scumbag lawyer profession must be crushed to save this nation.

      2. "They're apparently not even worried about how much debt that the surrounding counties will have to assume if this were to go through."

        At present, Reedy Creek collects taxes from Disney and other property (real and personal) owners to pay for building and maintaining things like water, sewer and roads and providing fire and ambulance services.

        So yes, if the District is dissolved the two counties will have to due more works and, presumably assume the District's bonded indebtedness.

        BUT, sure seems to me that the counties will see a substantial increase in their tax base. All the money that Disney saved by doing its own thing, through the District, is, so to speak back in play.

        Imagine that the then Governor of Florida had made a deal with Walt Disney - "You build this great thing and we'll give you a 50-year tax break . . . .

        Anyway, that's what I think.

    2. Personally, I have no problem with the idea of Reedy Creek being abolished and have been saying so for 20 years.

      Do have a problem with the WHY they're doing it. And to a degree the shoot-themselves-in-the-foot way they did it and the speed with which they did it to deprive the actual people of the state from having an opportunity to speak up for it.

      Between this and Rick Scott though, it is amazing how the Florida Republican Party has really decided to embrace increasing people's taxes. I'm not necessarily opposed to that, but it is a surprising turn of events.

      1. Yeah. There's no real issue if they were to dissolve the special agreement but as retaliation for a company's political stance (which they were happy to abide with before and receive donations hand over fist)?

        But Republicans there don't care. They're apparently not even worried about how much debt that the surrounding counties will have to assume if this were to go through. But then again, as I understand, those are "blue" counties so I guess they're fine with fucking them over, per usual anyhow.

        Now if Disney were to pick up their ball and leave then maybe they'd care.

        1. Where would Disney go? Colorado? With their tax structure and weather that would keep the parks closed for 8 or 9 months out of the year?

          California? Already there. Actually moved some corporate offices to Florida.

          1. That's kind of the big issue.

            They had moved some things from Burbank to Florida. Because it was business-friendly.

            Trouble is ... with all of these recent stunts, there is absolutely no way that they can expand their creative/production side in Florida, and they certainly aren't going to keep expanding the remainder.

            Disney World will always be there, and it's always going to be a cash cow (absent future pandemics). But they have a lot (a LOT) of investment in other places- everywhere from Connecticut (ESPN) to California (still the headquarters) to New York to all sorts of places internationally.

            To the extent that they were thinking of bringing those operations to Florida ... yeah, not so much.

            1. Do you really think that people who would otherwise move to Florida and work for Disney are going to forget about it because a new law stops kindergarten teachers from instructing children on sexuality?

              You might as well say that you would never move somewhere because you don't like the state flag. It's such a petty complaint. People can always supplement their children's education however they like.

              1. I don't think you fully understand just how unpopular and polarizing both this law, and now Florida in general, are to some segments of the population.

                Regardless of what YOU think, I am fairly certain that it will be a cold day in hell before, say, Pixar agrees to re-locate to Florida. Or any of a number of other studios and content providers that Disney currently owns. This is a very big deal for them. It's why Chapek eventually had to back down.

                You simply don't get it- I suggest broadening your scope to try and see what other people are saying.

                1. Sorry, I can't imagine basing major life decisions upon a general dislike of a politician or the existence of a law that has an extremely minor impact on people's lives. I refuse to believe that any more than a tiny fraction of people could be so irrationally spiteful to act against their own self interests.

                  1. The fact that you can't imagine something, doesn't mean that it's not true.

                    I really suggest getting out more and talking to people that don't share your opinion ... for what it's worth. This isn't a small thing for a lot of people. Whatever you might think about it, a lot of people view this as an assault on the people and the things that they care about.

                    Just because you don't care, or don't make decisions on principle, doesn't mean others don't. More importantly, a lot of these people get to choose where they work and live.

                    1. What proportion of the population are they?

                    2. "This isn't a small thing for a lot of people. Whatever you might think about it, a lot of people view this as an assault on the people and the things that they care about."

                      Alot of people on both sides.

                      What parent wants their 5 year old son told by unqualified teachers that if they like dolls, the might be a girl and might require invasive medical treatment or surgery.

                      Or that gay men might really be women?

                    3. Yes, I have watched Libs of Tik Tok. Some nonbinary queers are very upset that they cannot brainwash kindergartners.

                    4. What parent wants their 5 year old son told by unqualified teachers that if they like dolls, the might be a girl and might require invasive medical treatment or surgery.

                      Or that gay men might really be women?

                      Like those are widespread things that are happening, assuming there is even a single instance of either actually happening.

                      And this law doesn't only reach those things which the vast majority of people find objectionable (so those things would be addressed by the school itself or the district school board or a lawsuit even without the benefit of this law) but includes assigning books that realistically depict the world by including, for example, a family with two moms. Of course, if that's indoctrination, then so is a book including a family with a mom and a dad, but, of course, supporters of the law know the primary chilling effect will be on assigning books depicting families with two moms rather than families with a mom and a dad.

                      And so yes, some people will shun Florida for its attempt to take local control over schools and place it in the hands of a centralized, homophobic bureaucracy. A school district in Cherokee, North Carolina might not want a book with two same-sex penguin parents in their library. The school district in Chapel Hill, North Carolina probably does. Why impose a statewide standard that, whichever way the standard goes, will upset half the population? Instead, let districts make these decisions about books and curriculum because, shocker, voters can vote the school board members out if they don't like how they are managing the school. Leave it to the governor and the legislature and this issue is tied to abortion, gun rights, tax rates, social safety net, voting rights, criminal justice reform, and a whole suite of other issues, so instead of making your voice heard on an issue, you can only pick a team.

                      Local control of schools means fewer angry parents, more responsiveness of those making the decisions on schools, and better, more efficient government. Sure, are some school districts going to do things you don't like or I don't like? Yes, but it's easier to move one county over than to move to another state. It's also easier to organize opposition in one county doing one stupid thing rather than try to get a governor to change on this if he's got 52% of the vote because of other things voters like about him.

                      There is no reason Lassen County, CA and Santa Cruz, CA should be forced by the state to have the same cultural touchstones in their classrooms or school libraries.

                  2. You can't? That actually impresses me (in a not-so-good way.)
                    Could you, for example, imagine people not moving to Florida or even leaving Florida if they tried to pass, say, a new Jim Crow law? I use this as an example because I assume (!) everyone can understand what such a law might mean for Black Floridians. If you can at least stretch your imagination that far, let me see if I can help you go a bit further: how about a new anti-sodomy law? Do you think LGBT Floridians might find that worthy of relocation?

                    I can hear you saying to yourself "but, but, but... teaching 3rd graders about sexual orientation isn't the same!" And you'd be both right and wrong at the same time. The law isn't about teaching K-12 about the existence of gay people, though it certainly limits that. It's really about setting up LGBT Floridians as scapegoats for Florida's problems. It calls LGBT Floridians, and their supporters, "groomers" which is another way of saying "pedophile." The LGBT community has seen laws like this before and we know what they mean. This will ratchet up the homophobic rhetoric among Florida's conservatives and it will result in an increase of violence and institutional discrimination across the state. These laws declare open season on Florida's LGBT residents and tourists.

                    I lived in Florida for over a decade and relocated to California because my now-husband and I can relax here without having to worry about being discriminated against or worse. We are treated far, far better here by the government, businesses, and residents--even the conservative ones.

                    1. These laws declare open season on Florida's LGBT residents and tourists.

                      Originally, the gay community just wanted to live and let live. But once they got some political power they decided that to hell with the deal they had made with those who disagreed with them but who, in accordance with true liberal precepts, had agreed to live and let live. Instead, the gay community began to insist that those having religious objections accept having their children taught in school that the homosexual orientation is as righteous as any other. Otherwise, they claimed, this was tantamount to declaring open season on them. It is not offensive for schools not to teach anything about topic X. It does not suggest anything to the children. To the adults it is an acknowledgment that two groups in society have different views and this is the compromise. To insist on domination is a childish approach. Let’s deal with our differences in a mature way.

                    2. To insist on domination is a childish approach. Let’s deal with our differences in a mature way.

                      Domination is letting people sue the schools and teachers because one teacher referred to his husband in a casual comment or one student wanted to give a book report on "Heather Has Two Mommies." That's what domination looks like. Maturity is understanding that mentioning one's husband, regardless of one's gender, is understood by children as love and not sex. Mature people understand that referring to same-sex partners is as much "sex education" as referring to opposite-sex partners. It's not up to schools to teach chilren what is "righteous," as that belongs in church or the home; it's up to schools to teach children about civics, history, and sociology among other things, which includes showing the diversity of human society. Children should see themselves in their lessons and not just the sanitized white, heterosexual majority.

                    3. "Domination is letting people sue the schools and teachers because one teacher referred to his husband in a casual comment or one student wanted to give a book report on "Heather Has Two Mommies.""

                      But the law doesn't let people sue for that.

                    4. "But the law doesn't let people sue for that."

                      The law is notably unclear on what does or does not constitute "[c]lassroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity." The law also provides perverse incentives for parents who claim to be aggrieved to sue school districts and let the courts sort it out. An oral book report on "Heather Has Two Mommies" involves classroom discussion, and may well be prohibited.

                    5. But the law doesn't let people sue for that.

                      The language is sufficiently ambiguous that it does allow for that lawsuit. I grant that the plaintiff probably wouldn't win, but these bounty-lawsuits aren't even motivated by encouraging winning lawsuits. They are motivated by teachers/administrators being afraid of the most crazy, litigious parents and incentivizing them to act and speak accordingly (e.g., avoiding any mention or reference to LGBTQ+ lifestyles or people).

                    6. It's not up to schools to teach chilren what is "righteous," as that belongs in church or the home; it's up to schools to teach children about civics…

                      Children rightly assume that whatever they learn in school is righteous, meaning morally right.

                      Children should see themselves in their lessons and not just the sanitized white, heterosexual majority.

                      The absence of instruction about homosexuality does not raise an inference in the minds of the kids that homosexuality is wrong. If gender identity is not mentioned in the story then gender identity is on nobody’s mind. A story about two boys who are friends suggests nothing about gender identity.

                2. It’s as unpopular and polarizing as the Democrat mind masters and braintenders want it to be.

                  There wouldn’t be any outrage had there not been a very compliant population groomed for the outrage dujour. This has been going on since at least Bush.

                3. I don't think you fully understand just how unpopular and polarizing both this law, and now Florida in general, are to some segments of the population.

                  There are also a lot of people who, though they support gay rights, oppose what they see as covert gay proselytization to suggestible children. It’s clearly not in the economic interest of any for-profit entity to have a high profile on either side of this issue.

                  1. I don't think that when you begin to use phrases like "covert gay proselytization" you actually really "support gay rights[.]"

                    But that's my view.

                    1. There are many people who personally disapprove of homosexuality but who have a live and let live approach toward homosexuals. For example, many people with religious objections think of homosexuality as a form of sinful behavior, just like fornication. Nevertheless, they are in favor of just letting people live their lives. However, they are not OK with schools suggesting to children that fornication is morally neutral or even desirable. A reasonable solution is simply for the schools not to teach anything on the subject. Why would anyone find fault with that?

                    2. Simple solution: erase an entire segment of society from being taught in school. Problem solved! Why would anyone be upset by erasing the existence of same-sex families?

                      \s for the \s impared.

                    3. There are many people who personally disapprove of homosexuality but who have a live and let live approach toward homosexuals.

                      By and large, these folks aren't working for Pixar or other companies in the content-creation business. To the contrary, the content creators likely think more like Hollywood folks (and perhaps a majority of Americans). They believe gays are full equal partners in society and this law is an indignity to them, particularly the claim that there is "covert gay proselytization" going on in Florida schools.

                    4. They believe gays are full equal partners in society and this law is an indignity to them

                      We have two competing groups who each feel indignant. Why do children K-3 need to be instructed in school about gender identity anyway? And why does anybody’s dignity require that?

                    5. Many people believe this bill is demagoguery aimed at appeasing people who believe that nothing positive should be taught to kids about gays or the transgender. That strikes me as an indignity.

                    6. Why do children K-3 need to be instructed in school about gender identity anyway?

                      Who, @NameNumber randos excluded, says they do?

                      Why do teachers in same-sex relationships need to live in fear of being sued for talking about their spouses, when teachers in opposite-sex relationships don't?

                      And why does anybody’s dignity require that?

                      If I were being told, "we'll live and let live, so long as only you and others like you refrain from mentioning your spouses to school children," I'm pretty sure that would affect my dignity.

                    7. And why does anybody’s dignity require that?

                      The dignity part looms large when you look at the proposed remedies—which seem tailored to assault dignity. That part kind of gives the lie to the whole live-and-let-live claim.

                    8. According to authorities, transitioning by young children is delicate process that needs to be supervised by knowledgeable mental health professionals in order to avoid exacerbating or prolonging symptoms of gender dysphoria, and transitioning back to the original gender can be highly distressing. Do school teachers qualify for this? Shouldn’t parents have the opportunity to hire specialists?

                      Especially when it comes to young children, very little is known about Gender Identity Disorder or Gender Dysphoria. Studies show that cross-gender identification in prepubescent boys is a better predictor of being gay than of being “trapped in the wrong body.” So who makes the decision that the teacher should just take a child’s gender declarations at face value? Who controls for the teacher who is inclined to always encourage a child to move full steam ahead with a transition?

                    9. School teachers are transitioning children?

                    10. School teachers are transitioning children?

                      Well, would you agree that they should not do so? So, for example, a teacher should not treat a biological boy as if he were a girl, based solely on the teacher’s evaluation after speaking with the child. Also, the teacher should not say anything to encourage children to think that they might actually be boys in the body of girls.

                  2. a teacher should not treat a biological boy as if he were a girl, based solely on the teacher’s evaluation after speaking with the child

                    Nor should the teacher treat the child as a boy based on the teacher's evaluation.

                    the teacher should not say anything to encourage children to think that they might actually be boys in the body of girls.

                    Banning such a statement sounds like indoctrination to me.

                    1. Nor should the teacher treat the child as a boy based on the teacher's evaluation.

                      How about treating the child as a boy based on the parent’s statement of the child’s biological gender? Are you suggesting that teachers should tell all young children that she does not know whether they are girls or boys? She can’t accept biology as the default? What would be the reason for that?

                      Banning such a statement sounds like indoctrination to me.

                      But isn’t encouraging children to think that they might actually be boys in the body of girls encouraging them to transition? How are teachers qualified to suggest transitioning or to guide a child through that?

                    2. Of course biomarkers is the default up until the child says they feel differently. Then coming down one way or the other is indoctrination.

                    3. Of course biomarkers is the default up until the child says they feel differently. Then coming down one way or the other is indoctrination.

                      So, you agree that teachers should not say anything to initially cause the child to feel differently? And what role should the teacher have in encouraging the child with respect to a different gender identity? At most, the teacher should help to implement a plan that is formulated by a trained professional, right? And when it concerns very young children the parents have the right to hire their own professional and to consult with him or her, right?

                    4. Seems OK to me. But, the Florida law does not allow the teacher to address the issue at all. The teacher should be allowed to say a child can feel like a boy (girl) even though they have girl (boy) body parts. You keep missing that the Florida law, by not permitting any instruction on gender identity, enforces the default and thus discourages the legitimacy of gender identity.

                    5. But, the Florida law does not allow the teacher to address the issue at all.

                      The law prohibits “instruction.” If a child indicates any confusion or dysphoria in this area the role of the teacher is to refer the matter to a person qualified to evaluate the situation and, with the input of the parents, formulate a plan. Thereafter, the teacher can address the issue by helping to implement the plan.

                      The teacher should be allowed to say a child can feel like a boy (girl) even though they have girl (boy) body parts.

                      Don’t you think that if a child has an issue in this area he or she should be the one to bring it up initially? Children are very suggestible at this age. Why introduce the issue at all if it does not arise spontaneously from one or more children? Why isn’t it enough for the teacher to just tell the kids that if they have any issues of any kind they can come to the teacher and discuss them?

                      Furthermore, what is the point of a teacher saying that a person with a boy body can feel like a girl? How is the child supposed to resolve that? The resolution is outside the scope of the teacher’s expertise.

                      Studies show that most children with gender dysphoria will not remain gender dysphoric after puberty. Determining where a particular child lies on this continuum requires much insight and training. Encouraging a child to think of himself as the opposite gender when really he is just going to turn out gay can cause lasting harm. Should the teacher also tell the kids that sometimes when a person with a boy body feels like a girl it is just a phase he is going through and that he should not worry, he will grow out of it?

                      You keep missing that the Florida law, by not permitting any instruction on gender identity, enforces the default and thus discourages the legitimacy of gender identity.

                      How does it “enforce” the default? It waits for the child, without any prompting, to say that he or she is confused or has an issue in this area. Then the teacher is to deal with it in an accepting way and refer the child to someone qualified to help the child deal with it. What about this discourages the legitimacy of gender identity?

                      Do you think it’s appropriate for a teacher to tell a class of first graders that today they’re all going to choose their gender identities and their pronouns, based on how they’re feeling today, and that this sort of thing can be changed at a whim?

                    6. Do you think it’s appropriate for a teacher to tell a class of first graders that today they’re all going to choose their gender identities and their pronouns, based on how they’re feeling today, and that this sort of thing can be changed at a whim?

                      Of course not. Stop erecting ridiculous straw men.

                      How does it “enforce” the default?

                      Silence enforces the default. At what age do you think teachers should be instructing in sexual orientation and gender identity?

                    7. Of course not. Stop erecting ridiculous straw men.

                      Well, take a look at some material used in teaching PK-3 in the Evanston/Skokie School District. On page 113 Kindergarten children are read a story: “We will hear another story about a boy who people thought was a girl. There are also children who feel like a girl AND a boy; or like neither a boy OR a girl. We can call these children TRANSGENDER.”

                      Then, after the story, on page 117, they are told: “Your identity is for YOU to decide!”

                      On page 158 the Kindergarteners have fun picking their pronouns and introducing themselves. They are to be told, “Whatever pronouns you pick today, you can always change! But remember that it important to tell somebody to call you what you want to be called.”

                      Isn’t this an example of what you called a ridiculous straw man?

                      Silence enforces the default. At what age do you think teachers should be instructing in sexual orientation and gender identity?

                      Well, the problem with K-3 is that children are too suggestible at that age, and they don’t have the context with which to respond to such choices. What’s wrong with this: if children are not feeling dysphoric then there is no problem to resolve. If children are feeling troubled about anything they should speak privately with the teacher, who can then refer them to someone having the expertise to guide the student through the issue.

                      Each child is different. Some kids should transition and some kids will just grow out of it. What kind of general instruction will enable each child to evaluate himself or herself properly?

                    8. If after receiving guidance a student is going to change his or her gender identity, then at that point the entire class needs to be given some instruction on what's going on.

                    9. Isn’t this an example of what you called a ridiculous straw man?

                      It's pretty much like voter fraud. It occurs, but at a very low level and is used to demagogue.

                      What kind of general instruction will enable each child to evaluate himself or herself properly?

                      In K-3, I suggest teaching that 1) a child can feel like a boy (girl) even though they have girl (boy) body parts and a same-sex couple loves each other the same way an opposite-sex couple does. In both cases, there is nothing addressing any specific student. Just the general concept appropriate for K-3 that does not sexualize, groom or encourage kids.

                      Repeating: At what age do you think teachers should be instructing in sexual orientation and gender identity?

                    10. It occurs, but at a very low level

                      No, I think it’s more likely that it’s the norm. What evidence do you have that it is not? That was a major school system.

                      At what age do you think teachers should be instructing in sexual orientation and gender identity?

                      Well, what do you mean by sexual orientation? Should we also teach kids that some people have sex with animals, or enjoy causing pain to others, or tying them up? Should we tell them that some people get pleasure from walking around naked in public? Should we ask kindergarteners whether or not they feel like they are exhibitionists or whether they sometimes have a fonder feeling toward the family dog than their friends have toward their dogs? What’s the limit of sexual orientation?

                    11. In case you weren’t aware, paraphilic behavior is quite common. One study in Quebec found:

                      Merging both survey modes and genders revealed that nearly half the sample (45.6%) acknowledged a desire for (wish to realize) at least one paraphilic behavior and approximately one-third (33.9%) had engaged in a paraphilic behavior at least once during their lifetimes. Voyeurism was the most common theme (46.3% desire and 34.5% experience, respectively), followed by fetishism (44.5% and 26.3%, respectively), extended exhibitionism—couple (30.6% and 30.1%, respectively), frotteurism (26.7% and 26.1%, respectively), and masochism (23.8% and 19.2%, respectively). These categories showed rates of occurrence higher than those considered rare (2.3%) or unusual (15.9%) according to the statistical normal curve.

                      Are these included in the kindergarten class on sexual orientation?

                4. "You simply don't get it- I suggest broadening your scope to try and see what other people are saying."

                  Is "what other people are saying" that "Don't Say Gay" nonsense? If so, I'm good with continuing to ignore their bleating. I haven't seen a single left-wing criticism of the Florida law that isn't pure lies.

                5. I am sympathetic to the First Amendment issues presented, though I haven't thought them through. I'm concerned whether Florida has done wrong. I know Disney has and would not want any company that would stay away because it's grooming activities might be circumscribed.

                  1. No first Amdt issues. Teachers are employees here, and have the same rights as everyone else does at work.

                6. “I don't think you fully understand just how unpopular and polarizing both this law, and now Florida in general, are to some segments of the population.”

                  As polarizing as tearing down heritage statues under the premise that one side’s opinion represents the undisputed totality of civil war truth and meaning?

                  Avoiding polarization hasn’t been a consideration for any of many sides of this country’s proxy morals battles for the past thirty years. Maybe longer.

                  FLA has approached corporate Bolshevism with an ‘if you can’t beat ‘em adopt their practices’ approach which is sad but was probably necessary. It remains, however, dispiriting to realize how far the rot of anti-unity and the practice of establishing truth through punishment has corroded our culture. Good job critical theory!

                7. The law is polarizing? Really?

                  Well, of course it is, but that's only because the topic is polarizing. And it's polarizing because a lot of people don't really like the direction public education has been moving for some time.

                  There's a reason why people respond to those who want to pass this bill with "Ok, groomer" -- because the other side is also polarizing.

                8. PIXAR is located in the very business friendly city of Emeryville on SF Bay. It seems quite improbable that there is a strong reason to move PIXAR anywhere.

                9. "I don't think you fully understand just how unpopular and polarizing both this law, and now Florida in general, are to some segments of the population."

                  Majority of FL DEMOCRATS support it. It really is not that polarizing nor is it that unpopular.

                  Some people demagogue the hell out of it, to be sure, but Disney is losing support and stock value for reasons.

        2. New location for Disney East? Valdosta, GA, only 200 miles northwest of Orlando. Average daily high temperature above 60 degrees in every month. Sits on a highway which already provides principal access to Orlando for folks who drive from the rest of the nation. They will get to arrive sooner. Easy to hook it up with high speed rail to one the nation's most powerful air hubs at Atlanta. Some of the flatest country in the nation.

          Currently inexpensive to live there, below the national average. Median home price a bit below $200,000, so not a dump. (During an early 20th century cotton boom, Fortune magazine listed Valdosta with the highest per-capita income in the nation, but that went away when the boll weevil arrived.)

          The change would cement GA as a blue state. For Disney, it would get rid of the Florida Man problem in the governor's office. For Georgia it would be a big economic step up, in a part of the state ripe to take advantage.

          Ya'll ought to be investing down there right now.

          1. Uh, no.

            Look, Disney World is not just the four parks, it's also a giant resort and destination even beyond that. Fun and bizarre fact (IIRC)- Disney World is the #1 honeymoon destination in the US, and top ten in the world. It attracts people from all over.

            You're not relocating that.

            ....but you're not going to invest in bringing more of Disney's admini and corporate there, and certainly not any production or Disney+ or anything else.

            1. “it's also a giant resort and destination even beyond that.”

              “Is” can turn to “was” very quickly.

            2. Valdosta is no less obscure than was Orlando before Disney picked it. It is no more absurd to suggest Valdosta as a leading honeymoon destination than it was to suggest Orlando pre-Disney.

              Having seen it done once, I suggest the customers, and the employees, would adjust quickly to an equivalent experience which was a bit more accessible to most of them, and maybe for a while a bit less expensive.

              Disney made Orlando what it is. Orlando was none of that before Disney. I suspect all Disney need do is announce consideration of Valdosta—or some other plausible alternative—to reverse Florida's belligerence, and re-secure Disney's present status—maybe with a few new sweeteners thrown in.

              1. It is vital --- VITAL --- that we protect multi trillion dollar businesses and insure that they get perks that literally no company in history has ever received anywhere.

                Do you REALLY think there is a prayer in Hell of them getting another deal like they originally had in FL in any other state in the country?

                If I were them, I'd be more worried about investor suits about their stock's performance.

                1. damikesc — I think it is a certainty that Disney could get a better deal in Texas. But what does the quality of the former deal matter to Disney, after Florida strips it away?

                  Think of the prospect of a Disney World move this way: which party has more to lose, Disney absent its former deal, or Florida? The tone of commentary here suggests to me that the right-wingers worry it's Florida. That's the way I vote too.

                  1. Stephen,
                    People on the East Coast like to go to FL in the colder months. You know that. The very word FL is attractive. Folks are not going to change their minds about going to FL because of this law.
                    As for content creators, I'd venture that they much rather be located in intellectually and artistically vibrant locales such as the SF Bay area or in or near LA or even in the Boston-Cambridge area (although cold winters are a negative).
                    Abandoning Orlando and building the equivalent resort + park is expensive and Disney can certainly get a better return on the dollar than a move to Valdosta.

                  2. "I think it is a certainty that Disney could get a better deal in Texas."

                    They would get, roughly, the identical they have in FL post removal of their special perks.

                    And their employees would be just as unhappy as they are in TX (TX is not fond of grooming in schools and are just as likely to pass a bill stopping it. Plus their pro-life tendencies won't make the woke members of the employees happy).

                    "Think of the prospect of a Disney World move this way: which party has more to lose, Disney absent its former deal, or Florida? The tone of commentary here suggests to me that the right-wingers worry it's Florida. That's the way I vote too."

                    Nope.

                    Disney lacks the resources to move WDW. Simply beyond the realm of the possible.

            3. "but you're not going to invest in bringing more of Disney's admini and corporate there, and certainly not any production or Disney+ or anything else."

              Disney Plus is not exactly a massive success. And they are cannibalizing movies for it. And they are actively making terrible Marvel movies, so there is another cash cow dying on the vine.

          2. Georgia!! With their "Jim Crow II" voting laws? The same people that just drove the All Star game out of town? I doubt it.

          3. The change would cement GA as a blue state.

            Uh-huh.

            Georgia state government has been a Republican trifecta since 2005 (six years longer than Florida), and currently the Republicans have a 61% state Senate majority and a 57% state House majority (not particularly different than Florida's 60% and 65%).

        3. They're apparently not even worried about how much debt that the surrounding counties will have to assume if this were to go through.

          I personally find it very amusing that all the headline-pasters can't open their mind to the fact that maybe... just MAYBE, there's a mechanism -- probably even multiple ones -- through which those surrounding counties would be able to recoup the cost of the payments on the bonds if indeed they had to assume them. It's like critical thought has ceased to exist.

          1. Of course they can recoup it: by taxing their residents. (No, they can't only tax Disney.) Do you think their residents want to pay that much extra in taxes?

        4. "Now if Disney were to pick up their ball and leave then maybe they'd care."

          Their property holdings in FL are in the BILLIONS.

          No way they can sell them and not lose money in the process. And no way they can buy a similar amount of property elsewhere and not lose tons of money.

      2. it is amazing how the Florida Republican Party has really decided to embrace increasing people's taxes

        Is it clear that this will be the case? The WSJ cites a source who knows Disney’s finances and says the district saves the company tens of millions of dollars a year. As a result of this both Disney and the taxpayers have to pay more? How does that happen?

        1. Because the counties would have to absorb the outstanding bonds and payments due.

          Disney saves money in different ways, but a lot of it is through the efficiency in not having to go through government approvals for various things that they need to have done.

          1. The supporters of this bill seem to think that requiring Disney to make the payments on these bonds is trivial.

            However, Florida state Rep. Randy Fine, who helped spearhead the bill to sunset Reedy Creek, told CNBC that local taxpayers would actually benefit from Disney being stripped of its special tax status, saying the tax revenue generated by Disney would instead go to local government and would cover the services.

            "Those taxes will continue to be paid," Fine said. "They will just be paid to Orange and Osceola county instead of this special-improvement district. The taxpayers could end up saving money because you've got duplicative services that are being provided by this special district that are already being done by those municipalities."

            It seems unlikely that “the efficiency in not having to go through government approvals for various things that they need to have done” results in a savings to Disney of tens of millions of dollars per year.

          2. Disney saves money in different ways, but a lot of it is through the efficiency in not having to go through government approvals for various things that they need to have done.

            Think that one through from the point of view of a Disney strategic planner. How long before a newly-imposed lack of, "efficiency," morphs into an endless series of shakedowns and delayed or withheld services? How long does Disney World thrive after it becomes just a little bit tacky?

            1. I am amused thinking about Disney having to deal with environmental laws they currently don't have to worry about much.

              That should be entertaining.

      3. Giving parents input into what their children are taught is bad? Or perhaps you think secret conversations with 5 year olds about sex is proper for adults. You and the Democrat party may embrace state indoctrination of children and sexualizing them at an early age but most people with a functioning moral code do not.

      4. So, you're saying you have no clue what happened.

        The Reedy Creek Improvement District doesn't go away until at least 6/1/23. If the people of Florida decide that they like the way Disney supports child molesters, then they can vote all the Republicans, including the Governor, out of office this November.

        But when last checked, a majority of Florida DEMOCRATS support the Parent's Rights in Education bill:
        https://floridianpress.com/2022/03/new-poll-52-of-florida-democrat-voters-back-dont-say-gay-bill/

        Disney has to re-apply to keep their "Improvement District", as do 5 other groups. If, during the re-application process, they decide to stop fighting for sex grooming 5 year olds, they'll probably get their ID back.

        Big corporation power is no more moral than big government power. So I'm ecstatically happy to see a State Legislature wiling to go after a big company that's trying to pushing their BS left wing politics on the rest of us

        1. Oh, enough with the silly objective facts, son. There are NARRATIVES to be spun!

        2. Greg J: for a terrible legal analyst, he makes a pretty great Nazi.

    3. Interesting how Liberals have done no such thing.

      Liberals are thinking "Desantis shot himself in the foot." He just put all the other coroporations on notice that he's willing to use the levers of state power to punish non-loyal businesses.

      1. Liberals are thinking "Desantis shot himself in the foot." He just put all the other coroporations on notice that he's willing to use the levers of state power to punish non-loyal businesses.

        Only if they're morons.

        Everyone else understands he's informing company executives who think "supporting the Left is a free move" that they're wrong, and that if they want to stay in business they'd better stop it.

          1. ... is not conservatism or libertarianism. It might just be authoritarian socialism.

            1. Meh. It's fighting fire with fire.

              The people who wouldn't hesitate to use this power are merely complaining because it's being used against them.

              If living according to your principles prevents you from fighting back against the people who don't hold those same principles, at what point do you say "screw it, I'm tired of being a doormat", throw out your principles, and actually fight back?

              I think we're reaching a breaking point: conservatives and libertarians are tired of being held back by their principles. They are going to make the socialists live by socialist rules.

              1. Held back by their principles! That's hilarious!

                1. Heh, I don't expect a Party that lives by one principle -- "To do what it takes to take and keep power right now, without regard to who it hurts, even if it's us in future fights" -- to know what it means to be held back by principles.

                  1. The key is to live by one principle -

                    So long as you are only slightly better than how your view the other side, your righteousness justifies all!

                    1. After years of seeing all sorts of dirty tricks played by Democrats, only to consistently see Republicans say "That's not fair! But we're not going to respond in kind, because we can't stoop to their level!" -- there's a reason rank-and-file Republicans consider their politicians spineless -- it's nice to finally see some pushback.

                      There's another rule in play, and it's particularly needed when you're fighting for survival, whether literally or figuratively: if your opponent refuses to fight civilized, all bets are off.

                      The Pacific theater was particularly brutal because of one thing: the Japanese did not abide by the Geneva Conventions. They executed POWs, they surrendered and then shot the soldiers trying to accept them as POWs, and so forth. While they didn't, themselves, abide by the Conventions, they expected Americans to.

                      And we did, at least at first. But when it became clear that they wouldn't obey the Conventions, we wouldn't, either. And when you think about it, that's the only method we have to enforce something like the Geneva Conventions.

                      I'm sick and tired of trying to fight civilized against an opponent that's trying to destroy our civilization -- and before you say that's an exaggeration, let me remind you of an entire year of riots, defunding of police, and boarding up of businesses for fear of the outcome of an election, that came down the day it became clear Pretendant Biden "won".

              2. If living according to your principles prevents you from fighting back against the people who don't hold those same principles, at what point do you say "screw it, I'm tired of being a doormat", throw out your principles, and actually fight back?

                You don't, you fucking moron. That's what principles are. If you only adhere to them when it's beneficial to you, then they're just weapons, not principles.

                1. If I value liberty, and you, valuing authoritarianism, use my liberty to establish an authoritarian regime, and I do nothing to stop that, can it really be said I respect liberty?

                  As for "if you only adhere to them when they benefit you", Japanese soldiers in WWII did not adhere to the Geneva Conventions. American soldiers did, until they realized Japanese didn't. Would we have won the war in the Pacific, had we adhered to those principles, even if the enemy didn't? Or do you fight the enemy on their terms?

                  Incidentally, at the same time, Americans did adhere to the Geneva Convention, mostly, when fighting Germans, at least generally. (There were a few SS divisions that didn't, and they were treated accordingly.)

                  In order for principles to work, they have to be accepted by all sides. If not, it gives the violators an advantage, and the only way to counter that advantage, is to realize that if your enemy doesn't abide by any principles, there's no such thing as principles, and fight back as hard as you can, until your enemy begs for mercy, and accepts that maybe those principles were a good idea in the first place.

      2. "Liberals are thinking "Desantis shot himself in the foot." He just put all the other coroporations on notice that he's willing to use the levers of state power to punish non-loyal businesses."

        ...by taking away a power none of those other businesses, nor any other business in America, have?

        Not quite the suppression you seem to pretending it is.

        Now we need to see Republicans fix IP laws.

        1. I love how on any other day, you and yours will accept no trespasses against your "God-given" right to free speech, even though nearly all your jeremiads lack merit. because #1A prohibits ONLY the government from meddling in speech.
          Suddenly the Free Speech Clause is as meaningless as the Establishment Clause in your camp. An actual government has literally passed a law infringing on Disney's free speech, a formal punishment for speaking in opposition to the rulers.
          And you shout, "Yeeeeeeeeeess!! Who next wants a smack down for speaking publicly against the party?"

    4. When exactly have liberals been "all for ending special benefits for corporations"?
      And, to stay on track, we are talking about rights here, not "special benefits."

      That switcheroo gives you room not to attack Ron DeSantis and the Florida GQP. You all wail about Twitter and YouTube censoring you and clobbering your free-speech rights, even though they don't. #1A bans the government, not social media, from infringing free speech.
      Here a bona fide government (Florida) is doing what is explicitly prohibited: the Legislature and governor literally made a law to retaliate against Disney for exercising its rights to free speech and to seek redress from the government.

      Stop scapegoating Democrats. It's a pathetic practice among Trump fans (and practically defines Trump himself).

  2. Or some of the benefits given to the NEA before it become rabidly political?

    1. The National Endowment for the Arts?

  3. Government punishment of political opponents is NOT okay. And by punishment we count simply discontinuing sweet tax/governmental privileges progs would oppose in every other circumstance and would probably dismantle in an instant themselves if they weren't focused on protecting child groomers at this moment.

    ...
    ...
    ...

    Unless....you are punishing tiny conservative mom and pop cake baking and photography shops. And maybe spacex too. And clothing shops catering to half naked beach teens for not being forced to allow hijabed employees. And conservative radio shows and tv networks.... Basically anything considered conservative is fair game.

    but other than that its wrong no matter what.

    1. Leaving aside the what aboutism, your examples aren't on point. Disney is being punished for talking politics. The baker, photographer and clothing store were punished for violating anti-discrimination laws. Those two are not the same. Not sure how you think radio and TV networks are being punished.

      When some liberal government somewhere punishes someone for talking politics and nothing more, then you'll have an analogous case. Until then, it's just irrelevant whining.

      1. More comparable to Chic-fil-a, the treatment of which by politicians on the left is, like this, horseshit.

        1. Some of the Chic-Fil-A "punishment" was not choosing them for major tenants because they aren't open on Sundays when the rest of the airport / mall / tenants were.

          1. Some of the "punishment", though, was because Chic-Fil-A donated to groups fighting to preserve the definition of marriage as something between a man and a woman.

            Some of us might argue that this qualifies as free speech, and Chic-Fil-A was being punished for their free speech.

        2. Did politicians do anything there? I thought they just did a boycott (which apparently didn't do anything anyhow.)

          1. They refused a license in more than one airport because CFA’s founder is a religious guy who disapproves of homosexuality. Never any evidence that it seeps into their business practices that I’ve seen.

            San Antonio was one of them. Handful of others that I don’t remember the specifics. I think there were also some cities that tried to banish them.

            1. They refused a license because Chick-fil-a isn't open on Sunday, and people who travel on Sunday need to be able to buy food.

              1. The owners politics had nothing to do with it? And it was all just a weird coincidence that these license issues were at the same time as the Chic-a-Fila outrage?

              2. K_2,
                That may be true that people need to buy food, but it is not as if there are not many other options at large airports. I was in Charlotte a week ago and noticed that several large chain food stores were not open.

                1. It's not an unreasonable reason to deny a license, though. If you can find me examples of other restaurants that were granted airport licenses despite being closed on Sunday, I'll reconsider. Also, I haven't flown through Charlotte in a while, were those restaurants regularly closed on Sunday, or were they closed that particular Sunday for a specific reason?

                  1. You were clearly proven wrong and now you're scrambling to find any ad hoc difference to justify yourself. Bu-bu-but it doesn't count if the speech is against Demoncrat law! Bu-bu-but they are closed sunday!

                    1. If it makes you feel better to think I was proven wrong, knock yourself out.

                  2. Well actually it is unreasonable to deny a license to a restaurant because you don't want to accommodate their religious beliefs.

                    Would you deny a license to a kosher deli, or a donner kebab stand because their religious beliefs forbid them to serve pork or alcohol?

                    1. The issue isn’t what’s on their menu, it’s whether they are open at times when the traveling public needs to be able to buy food.

                    2. "Would you deny a license..."

                      Is 'license' the right word here, as opposed to 'lease'?

                      Generally speaking, I'd think that if government-as-landlord is leasing space for any purpose, they should lease to whoever will pay the highest space, without regard to how the tenant will use the space.

                      But sometimes the government-as-landlord is leasing space with the expectation it will be used to provide a specific service. For example, think of the rest areas on the Pennsylvania Turnpike, where the government wants the tenant to sell gas and food. Even if I am willing to pay the most rent, they shouldn't rent to me if my plan is to replace the gas and food with, I dunno, aquarium supplies. Because if I do, people are going to be running out of gas on the highway.

                      If the state fair want a beer-n-brats stand, I don't think they have to lease the space to an Islamic teetotal vegan business.

                      And for Chick-fil-a in an airport, it's not unreasonable to expect vendors to be open whenever the airport is.

                    3. @Krychek_2, @Absaroka

                      Have neither of you two ever taken a red-eye?

                      There are countless airports where nothing is open.

                    4. "Have neither of you two ever taken a red-eye?
                      There are countless airports where nothing is open."

                      As I recall, the objection wasn't that Chick-fil-a wouldn't be open at 0300 - it was that it wouldn't be open during the day on Sunday.

                  3. Actually K_2, they were closed on Saturday for whatever reason.
                    Admit it. You're just making up a reason for denying the license. It is all about economics.
                    Compare CLT to ORD and you'll see that ORD is food source poor. Obviously if it were economically advantageous that situation would change.
                    Unless you have some inside information drop the speculation that happens to suit your politics.

              3. Sorry, no. That argument is inconsistent with lack of licensing problems for all the other airport businesses which are closed at different times when travelers are nevertheless in the airport. The "no Sundays is a deal-breaker" was a rather transparent pretext.

              4. In a word, bullshit. They denied them a license because they weren’t open on Sunday while openly criticizing the founders stance on homosexuality in the same fucking announcement. They told you why they were doing what they were doing but you want to excuse it.

                Thugs is thugs. But your thugs are lovable because they’re righteous. You’re a bunch of fascists.

              5. Suuuure they did. That's why Chicago, in an open City Council meeting, took turns making outraged speeches about how the "Anti Gay" nature of an owner did not reflect "Chicago Values" (insert street violence and political corruption jokes here) and would not be tolerated and banned issuing any business licenses. "Just because they weren't open on Sundays".

      2. "violating anti-discrimination laws"

        Punished for their 1A protected religious beliefs

        1. The First Amendment protects belief but not necessarily practice. Someone may think taxes are against the Bible (and in fact a good many someones believe that) but that doesn't get them out of paying their taxes.

          1. So you're saying there would be 100% the same activity among leftwing government officials if these shops had instead discriminated against a christian or straight couple?

            1. Maybe not completely 100 percent, but not the rampant favoritism you’re convinced of either.

          2. The First Amendment protects "exercise" of religion. Not just belief.

            1. Well, the 9/11 hijackers were exercising their religion. It wasn’t protected by the First Amendment though. Because other people have rights too.

              And that’s the issue. At that point does your exercise affect other people.

              1. At that point does your exercise affect other people.

                If your definition of affecting other people is so broad as to include not interacting with the allegedly affected other people at all, it has become so vast as to swallow the entire constitutional right.

                Which presumably is the point.

                Meanwhile, back in the real world, killing people really is affecting them. Leaving them be, to go their own way, is not.

      3. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
        "The baker, photographer and clothing store were punished for violating anti-discrimination laws. "
        >>>>>>>>>>>>>

        And those blacks were being punished for being uppity. Not for being black.

        >>>>>>>
        . Not sure how you think radio and TV networks are being punished
        >>>>>>>

        guess we all hallucinated Dems attempts to bring back the fairness doctrine.

        >>>>>>>>>>
        "When some liberal government somewhere punishes someone for talking politics and nothing more, "
        >>>>>>>>>

        And funding leftwing organizations and brainwashing childen....

        >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
        then you'll have an analogous case. Until then,
        >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

        People already posted other cases and there are certainly far more.

        1. ""The baker, photographer and clothing store were punished for violating anti-discrimination laws. "
          >>>>>>>>>>>>>

          And those blacks were being punished for being uppity. Not for being black."

          Do you have some blindness that keeps from reading the word 'law?'

          1. Fine. Those blacks were punished for violating Jim Crow laws, not for being black.

            1. Jim Crow laws are about like antidiscrimination laws.

              Awesome pull there, chief.

              1. You’re the guy that wants to punish people who won’t bake cakes that send a message that they disagree with.

                1. Being sued for flouting anti-discrimination laws is not punishment. It is a predictable consequence of an act of civil disobedience. Those who kvetch want that to be consequence free.

                  And Mr. Phillips never baked the damn cake, so he succeeded in his endeavor.

                  1. “ Being sued for flouting anti-discrimination laws is not punishment.”

                    Lol

                  2. Punishment is not punishment, war is peace, ignorance is freedom, yeah, we understand where you're coming from.

                    What damages did Philips get from the government body that violated his constitutional rights? Did they even pay his legal bills?

                2. I promise you he won't want to punish a cake baker who refuses to bake a God Hates Fags celebration cake.

                  1. So long as he won't also punish a baker for refusing to bake a Darwin Hates Fags cake, then he supports a viewpoint that is perfectly legal in most places.

        2. The fairness doctrine requires what you consider the liberal media to provide equal time to conservatives too. Doesn’t your shoulder get sore from that massive chip you carry around?

          1. And why should leftist programs be forced to carry conservative programming? And what about the Satanists, who want equal time with both leftists and conservatives? At what point do you decide that "both sides" have had equal time?

            No, the fairness doctrine is an idiotic doctrine. All it really does is force people to not talk politics at all. And considering how Leftists already dominate so many institutions -- institutions that have nothing to do with radio, and thus aren't subjected to the fairness doctrine -- all that means is that conservative voices are silenced.

            So, yes, the "fairness" doctrine is a pretty big deal.

            1. I’m not saying that I agree in all respects with the fairness doctrine. Just that it’s not monolithically used against the right.

              1. It doesn't have to be monolithically used against the right to effectively silence their speech.

                And it's particularly galling to the right -- who particularly seem to want to protect everyone's right to free speech -- to have a policy that hurts both the left's and the right's speech.

                1. In this very thread, you and many others on the right are working hard AGAINST free speech.

                  This is the new GOP: standing on the soapbox of liberty crying for authoritarianism.

                  1. First of all, if you're referring to the initial bill in question, it's not a free speech issue, it's a curriculum one. So long as schools are run by the State, the State has the authority to dictate what gets taught and when. Perhaps you don't like it. As a libertarianish person, I would respond to that by getting rid of schools altogether -- after all, where the heck did we get the idea that we should have government tell us what to think?!?.

                    Second, this new law doesn't prevent Disney from taking a stand, or speaking out -- it merely does something that Leftists have been requesting for a while now: stop giving this Corporation special privileges. It's funny to see Democrats suddenly defending Corporate Privilege. Well, defending it again ...

                    Because, third, it's funny to see Democrats suddenly on the side of free speech, when for several years now they've supported Corporate Censorship on Youtube, FacsistBook, Twitter, et al, and suggesting "if you don't like it, go found your own platform", only to do everything they can to sabotage those platforms when others try to create them.

                    At some point, I have to ask: should Corporations have special privileges, or shouldn't they? Do we have free speech, or don't we? If one side continuously pushes for authoritarianism, will the other side push against it with liberty, or will they start to resort to an authoritarianism of their own?

                    The latter is an important question. I don't know if I agree with DeSantis and the Republicans pushing back against Disney in this manner, but I do know two things: I have seen Democrats do this for years, and the authoritarianism has angered me, and I am highly amused that Democrats don't particularly like it when it's done to them.

                    1. I should add another observation about this: too many Democrats think that Republicans are absolutist Libertarians, and thus government pushback is well outside the bounds of their principles.

                      The thing is, some Republicans are libertarians, or at least "libertarian conservatives" like myself (who believe that certain things are morally wrong, but shouldn't be enforced criminally), but to the degree that libertarians find a home in the Republican Party, it's because they are pushed out that direction by Democrats, and Republicans are tolerant enough to accept Libertarians as an uneasy truce. If you were to ask most libertarians, though, you would find that Republicans aren't necessarily small-government politicians, even if they are willing to give libertarians some space to push their preferences -- most Republicans are big government types -- they merely disagree with what needs to be governed.

                      What's more, many Republicans, while they believe corporations should generally be left alone, don't have any qualms with regulating them, if they decide corporations have been abusing their freedom.

                      Thus, it's absolute folly to assume that it's unprincipled for Republicans to call for the regulation of corporations, or to pull back on previously-granted government privilege. Much to the chagrin of libertarianish Republicans, regulating corporations they feel are being abusive rests well within the principles of the general Republican Party.

      4. " The baker, photographer and clothing store were punished for violating anti-discrimination laws"

        Which is just another way of saying that the baker, photographer and clothing store were punished for disagreeing with your politics

        IOW, you're wrong

        1. If a business not treating gays equally is politics, then they are being punished for their politics. However unlike with Disney, they are being punished for their conduct, not their speech (noting that for a small subset of businesses such as photography, there is expressive conduct).

          1. The exercise of religion is not limited to speech.

            1. Neutral and generally applicable laws do not violate the Free Exercise clause.

            2. Cake-baking is obviously not an exercise of religion.
              I know this because non-Christians bake cakes too.
              An example of religious exercise is genuflecting. Non-Catholics generally don't genuflect when they visit a Catholic church because they have no interest in exercising that religion.
              If you visit a Baptist church on a Sunday when they have Communion, you'll likely hear the pastor say only church members or those with the same beliefs should participate. Taking Communion is a religious exercise. Non-Baptists do not engage in this religious exercise because it's exclusive to those of the same religion.
              #TheReligiousWhite have simultaneously torched the Establishment Clause and stretched the Free Exercise Clause way beyond recognition.

              1. At the same time, saying cake-baking isn't an exercise of religion because non-religious people do it to is like saying eating bread isn't an exercise of religion, because non-religious people do it too.

                There's a certain element that pushes it into the realm of religion. In this case, it's the desire to withhold support from a sacrament -- in this case, the sacrament of marriage -- that the individual feels is being done in an unacceptable manner.

                Of course, the nice thing to do, in such a case, would be to go to one of the other bakers that this baker recommended as an alternative (because the baker wanted the couple to be serviced, but couldn't in good conscience be the one to provide that service), rather than try to sue that baker out of existence.

      5. Correct, mostly.

        It’s the college administrators who follow the DeSantis rule assiduously.

    2. Punishment of political opponents may not be "okay" but it is long-established practice engaged in not only by both the major US political parties but by politicians in literally every country at every point in history. That's what makes it "politics".

      Yes, we should all be nicer people - but if people were all angels, we wouldn't need any government at all.

      1. Once again the right claims a thing that is new and bad is actually normal.

        No, actually passing a law to punish a particular corporation because they said they didn't like your law? That's a new and much more direct and proud/open state-power-for-petty-vengeance thing than anything else you might point to.

        I added proud/open so you couldn't do some right-wing conspiracy theory.

        1. I can definitely see the argument that Disney is being punished for excerising their free speech rights, however I think there is a lot lower bar for taking away special privileges than there is for denying equal protection under the law.

          1. That is not my argument. My argument is about state power openly and proudly being used for petty vengance.

            1. This type of thing is hardly ‘petty’. Practitioners expect to instill fear. Think ‘insurrection’ (copyright) prosecutions.

          2. Below you can see I think this is likely legal, just awful.

        2. No, actually passing a law to punish a particular corporation because they said they didn't like your law? That's a new and much more direct and proud/open state-power-for-petty-vengeance thing than anything else you might point to.

          Hmm, I don't know, how about Colorado going after Masterpiece Cakeshop because they refuse to have anything to do with gay affirming ceremonies?

          You creatures have been using every shred of power you can find, corporate, academic, social, tech, and government, to crush those you disagree with.

          So now it's payback time.

          And no, it's not "oh, we can only do it if the Left did that exact thing", it's "any tool we can find to crush the Left with, we'll use."

          You intolerant and bigoted fascists have been running wild, assuming none of what you did would ever come back to haunt you.

          Well, it's haunting time

          1. You think antidiscrimination laws are vengeance? That sure is a long game to target that bake shop.

            No. Don't be stupid. THIS is vengeance. No law previously existed.

            1. Actually, a law previously existed: one that gave special privileges to Disney.

              Now, that law doesn't exist.

              1. Which is irrelevant to whether this is bad or not.

                I know there is some reliance interest giving rise to a property right that requires due process and this the Bill of Rights applies....but I'm pretty convinced this is probably legal.

                I just think it's awful. Due to it being state vengeance. The thing you just tried to excuse. Absolutely abuse of government power. But the right has been increasingly cool with authoritarianism lately. I'd urge you too look at what you've become okay with, though.

                1. What I've become OK with?
                  A mega corporation that has been buying special privileges from the government for decades finally falling to a decades-long campaign to get those privileges revoked because there was a public straw that broke the mouse's back?

                  What terror! What shame! What fascism!
                  I've always been against any private entity getting special privileges from the government as a general rule. That includes things like taxi medallions, special zoning, or private licensing boards. They should all go away. People should be treated with equality before the law, and if the government power is going to be used, it needs the be government itself doing it.
                  So for me, nothing has changed here.

                  Or was this another attack on some abstract "you" that didn't actually have to do with me, personally?

        3. "We're taking away a special privilege that literally nobody else has ever received" is not a punishment.

          It is, if anything, levelling the playing field with every other company in existence.

          But again, it is VITAL we give more and more benefits to multi billion dollar entities.

          1. Not a punishment? Don't be silly - this is being SOLD as a punishment by DeSantis.
            Not even you can actually believe what you're posting.

            [I have zero issue with legal setups like this if they result in a situation of mutual benefit between the state and corporation, and if worker's and customer's rights are maintained, as seems to be the case here. But your anti-capitalism is noted]

            1. Was unaware that "government providing perks to one corporation ONLY" equals "capitalism", but YMMV.

              1. Mutually beneficial regulatory arrangements are pretty normal.
                Check out sports teams.

                If you think that makes us a not capitalist nation, I guess you may be able to find some tankies who agree with you...

  4. You know, when you have a 55 year old, highly financially beneficial special interest that the state has gifted to you, you may just want to stay out of politically charged debates that put you at odds with most of the state's citizens. Especially when your participation in the debates amounts to putting forward egregious lies.

    1. You figure most Floridians are knuckle-dragging bigots afflicted by poor education and adult-onset superstition?

      Is the situation genuinely that bleak?

      1. I stayed in Florida 3 months. It is the reverse of Philly. 70% are REpublicans instead of 70% being Demcorats. Everything works in Florida, including government. It is a great place. No crime. Get what you need done in minutes from government. Everyone is rich, including the poor.

        1. It looks like the Pennsylvania Dems are trying to send their version of Travis McMichael to the Senate.

        2. DeSantis won by less than half a percent. Disney might be able to flip that equation single-handedly in Florida.

          There are plenty of old white bigots and old-timey religionists in Florida, but many of them went to Florida to die and that will occur soon. Like most of America (considered by population, not tumbleweeds), Florida is destined to become less White, less rural, less religious, less bigoted, less backward, less conservative, and less Republican.

          Most of what DeSantis is doing seems to be ensuring that the liberal-libertarian mainstream will act with vigor and perhaps even some vengeance when it controls the levers of Florida government. Superstition-laced gay-bashing has little future in America, even in Florida.

          1. You do realize that even a majority of Democrats support the "Stop the Groomers" bill in Florida, right? And that one of the biggest supporters of Republicans is Cubans?

            Oh, I forgot. You're too bigoted to recognize things like that!

        3. This is a load of hooey. I lived in Florida for more than a decade. No crime? LOL.

          1. Compared to Philly?
            NYC?
            LA?

      2. Actually, the bigots of Florida have been out of power for a while. It's why these laws were able to be passed in the first place.

    2. You know, when you have a 55 year old, highly financially beneficial special interest that the state has gifted to you, you may just want to stay out of politically charged debates that put you at odds with most of the state's citizens.

      Except when their motivation is not 100% financial, but part of it is in furtherance of a cause.

    3. You know, when you have a 55 year old, highly financially beneficial special interest that the state has gifted to you, you may just want to stay out of politically charged debates that put you at odds with most of the state's citizens.

      This sounds so much like an extortion racket. Do you hear what you sound like?

      And, of course, not speaking is also saying something.

    4. Good Lord! Are you American?
      Even if (and I doubt "if" is true) most Floridians backed the Don't Say Gay law, "[t]he very purpose of a Bill of Rights was to withdraw certain subjects from the vicissitudes of political controversy, to place them BEYOND THE REACH of MAJORITIES and OFFICIALS and to establish them as LEGAL PRINCIPLES...One's right to life, liberty, and property, to FREE SPEECH, a free press, freedom of worship, and assembly, and other fundamental rights MAY NOT BE SUBMITTED TO VOTE; they depend on the outcome of no elections." - Justice Robert Jackson

  5. I generally favor enabling people to use political power as they wish while they have it.

    I also hope they (1) recognize that how hard they push might influence the timing, nature, and severity of any snapback and (2) have the decency to refrain from whining and whimpering when the backlash occurs.

    I am generally content to let time sift these issues.

    (Of course, I recognize that is easy to say for those on the right side of history, the winning side of the culture war, and the favored side of predictable demographic trends.)

    1. Artie, you need to send us the resignation or you need to STFU.

      1. First-rate champion of free speech and the marketplace of ideas right here, folks!

    2. I don’t think child-grooming is going to win you guys any culture war battles.

      1. More bluster from the culture war's shambling casualties.

        Do you figure the Republicans are going to ride their bigotry-backwardness-ignorance-superstition platform to victory in the culture war?

        First they would need to diminish the pace at which liberals are defeating them in the culture war. No sign of that.

        They the clingers would need to pull even. Hasn't happened in 50 or 60 years.

        Then they would need to reverse the tide. And with what?

        With gay-bashing, racism, faith healers, misogyny, fourth-rate education, xenophobia, belligerent ignorance? Disdain for science, education, credentials, expertise, and reason? Preferences for declining and desolate communities over educated, accomplished, modern cities and suburbs?

        It's just not in the cards.

      2. An accusation of child grooming is a canard. It calls into question whether anything else the accuser says can be taken seriously.

        1. After years of being called “phobic” simply for being heteronormative, people who have been the target of that word have finally come up with a corresponding epithet in “groomer.” Somehow, the recent protestations of inaccuracy seem to be coming from people having unclean hands in the matter.

          1. Given your repeated defense of this rhetoric, it looks like you are requesting to be treated to be withe respect you accord others.

            Done and done.

          2. Tu quoque in defense of using groomer?

            There is no unclean hands in real life, there is just you justifying being an asshole.

            1. Let's hope better Americans recall this point when shoving even more progress down the throats of these bigoted, downscale right-wing losers.

          3. " After years of being called “phobic” simply for being heteronormative "

            I don't call clingers phobic.

            I describe them as superstitious, gullible gay-bashers.

            I observe that they are half-educated, racist culture war losers.

            I mention that they are un-American xenophobes and backwater rubes.

            Others are welcome wallow in political correctness and use euphemisms to describe bigots. I call a bigot a bigot.

            This seems to bother bigoted Republicans, conservatives, and faux libertarians.

            1. As someone who has a PhD, yet doesn't support the Democrat's effort to reverse their loss in the Civil War, and who knows a lot of people who are "uneducated" but are far smarter at what they do than many people who who hold degrees, I cannot help but notice how bigoted you are against the farmers, construction workers, and truck drivers (among others) upon whom the creation of civilization exists.

              It's also funny to see you squirm at the proposal that a Big Corporation finally be brought into regulation. Any other day of the week, you'd be complaining about how awful it is that Disney was given this special consideration in the first place!

        2. The grooming accusation has become quite popular among the substandard fans of this low-quality, white, male, stale blog.

          1. The ‘Kirkland’ standard; when Arthur reaches peak spittle velocity you know the comment is directly over the target.

            1. That has become the Volokh Conspiracy in a nutshell: Aiming for a few transient 'own the libs' moments while trying to maintain relevance for conservative thinking a bit longer in modern America.

              How the clingers wish to spend the time they have remaining is up to them. Trying to become relevant to discussions and decisions shaping American progress might be worthwhile for conservatives, but if this blog instead decides to go full Blackman, I will enjoy a bit of jousting before the conservative flame extinguishes in America.

              1. Arthur, I know that you're still disappointed when the Democrats lost the Civil War, and thus ran into their setback of ensuring slavery is preserved and even expanded throughout the world, and I know you're giddy over the prospect that the Democrats can finally win, and finally establish slavery, once and for all, but the rest of us would rather you lose this cultural war, preserve freedom, and finally end racism.

        3. Not when all of the opposition to the law is from the pro-groomer lobby.

        4. Unsure why "Do not take classroom time discussing sex with 8 year olds" and "Don't keep secrets about children from their parents" is such a horror show for some.

      3. A Christian, I presume.

    3. This is the backlash. This is what happens when leftists push too far, and the rest of the population finally stands up and says "Enough!"

  6. Since the state of FL is the sovereign and all of the localities are recognized by state action, they should be able to rescind that which they created.

    1. That is pretty much the end all of the legal analysis necessary.

      1. There are some actions, legal by themselves, which cannot be taken for a retaliatory reason. Retaliation for the exercise of First Amendment rights is such a prohibited reason.

    2. That isn't what Florida law says.

      https://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2018/Chapter189/All

      Read. Learn. Try again.

      1. Um... You're linking to Florida law. An entire chapter's worth. But does it matter what's in there? Unless there's something in the Florida Constitution, I'm not sure why Florida couldn't simply pass a law overriding the old law, no matter what it currently says.

    3. Ah, a binary thinker.
      What does the First Amendment say?
      The government cannot make laws that infringe on the freedom of speech.
      Florida literally passed a law to punish Disney for exercising its right to free speech.
      Forget about dumb red herrings like special rights and corporate fairness.
      Did Florida pass a law to retaliate against speech? Did Florida retaliate because Disney sought redress from the government and publicly shared a viewpoint that defies the government?
      Rights don't come from God. We preserve them by standing up for each other when the government strips them away.
      These comments are very concerning.

  7. Makes sense to me.

    (Although even the few comments that have already been posted suggest some pretty wild ideas among American conservatives about what American liberals believe.)

    1. Progressives are not "liberal."

  8. Moral to the story. When you are getting a sweet special benefit that your competition does not, avoid rocking the boat.

    1. I highly doubt Disney cares all that much. It'd be inconvenient but the debt they carry will just go to the counties. Then they can just as easily fuck off to another state (GA, NC?)

      1. They’re not going to move Disney World to another state.

        1. If I ran Disney, I would have it in Valdosta, GA as quick as the trucks could haul it up there. Why stay where you are not wanted, when you could move someplace nearby where you would be welcomed?

          1. WHy would Disney move a cash cow park? As for working quarters for content creators, they could be in any state in the union.

          2. You really think Georgia would be any more tolerant than Florida? Have you looked at Georgia politics lately? Or ever?

          3. "trucks could haul it up there"

            LOL

            Not enough trucks in the US.

            Its not some local carnival, it covers 25,000 acres and has dozens of significant permanent buildings, numerous hotels and miles of tunnels.

          4. That’s why you don’t run Disney. The shareholders aren’t going to be happy with spending several billion dollars to move just because you as CEO picked a fight.

            They expect you to efficiently run the company.

            Talking about moving it is beyond naive.

            1. Shareholders matter? Tell that to Twitter.

            2. bevis — Enlightened shareholders understand that for Disney several billion is peanuts. I think it would be more expensive than that, but well worth it. Losses which could mount up by just sitting in place and getting targeted repeatedly have to be reckoned into the balance. Opportunity to re-invent is always advantageous. A long-in-the-tooth amusement venue is always getting closer to demise anyway. Moving out later will only be more expensive.

              1. At minimum, 2 billion dollars. That's a minimum direct for cost replacement of assets of course. However, replicating everything in DW would take years, possibly over a decade and they would be doing so while waiting on government inspections since they wouldn't get their own special district. You'd be lucky to finish the project in less than 15 years and under 8 billion dollars. Moreover, the moment Disney World shutters Florida condemns the entire district and fines Disney $100 per acre per day until the entire area has been returned to conditions in which it can be built up and passes environmental review.

          5. Have you been to Disneyworld?

            It won't fit on trucks.

            1. Kazinski, put it on rails. The expensive part was undoubtedly built in big chunks in fabrication facilities, shipped to Orlando, and assembled by millwrights—or some such process.

              Anyway, I'm gratified to see the quick-twitch defense of the attack on Disney touched off by my comment. It suggests exactly the kind of right-wing nervousness which I urge Disney to exploit.

              1. Most of it was built on site.

                You might want to research talking points better.

                1. damikesc — I have bit of experience with fabrication of custom machinery. Industry thinks nothing of building a 230-foot stainless steel distillation tower in a specialist shop in Oregon, and then shipping it by rail to Louisiana (on a custom-built three-car assembly to help it around curves). Or fabricating in Boise a multi-million-pound platform to dig storm water tunnels under Chicago. When building custom heavy fabrications, the cost advantages of building in shops instead of on-site are widely-appreciated. When you see a strip mine with a walking dragline—in the bucket of which you can park several municipal buses—do you suppose that was fabricated on site? It was built elsewhere, shipped to the mine in parts, on multiple railroad trains, and assembled on site.

                  1. Here are some photos of Disneyworld construction, clearly showing the prefab sections being hoisted off the rail cars. There are lots more if you do an image search for 'disneyworld construction'!

                  2. SL,
                    Anything is possible. Is it economically attractive. You have given no reason why it should be or why content creators want to live in Orlando as opposed to the SF Bay area

      2. "just as easily fuck off to another state"

        25,000 acres, multiple parks, multiple hotels, monorail, miles of underground tunnels

        Real easy.

        1. Florida -- full of elderly Republicans relying on Relief Factor miracle pain cures to cheat replacement for another few days -- will be a blue state soon enough.

          Disney, and the liberal-libertarian mainstream, can address the clinger problem then.

          1. Wait, I thought the elderly were a major Democrat voting block. What happened to them?

            And what's going to happen to Florida when all those New Yorkers decide they can't stand Florida politics anymore, so they move back to New York?

            1. You see a conservative future for America?

              You keep on waiting for that . . . and the Rapture . . . and the Easter Bunny . . . and the tooth fairy . . . and Santa Claus . . .

              1. Yes, I do see a conservative future for America. Because when I see what Pretendant Biden and his cronies are doing to America, I cannot help but conclude that if America's future isn't conservative, then it's because it has no future at all.

                But I'm an optimist, and I'm sure that America will survive this folly of an administration.

                1. 'My way or this country is over' is the philosophy of extremist zealots.

                  1. Which is why it was disturbing to see cities board up their windows in preparation for the results of an election that Democrat mobs wouldn't like.

      3. "Just as easily"?

        That is funny right there.

    2. Your comment defies the very purpose of free speech!

      I used to wonder how Germans became Nazis.

  9. This is the same bullshit as when politicians on the left go after Chic-fil-a. Punishing a company for the opinions of its owners/executives. And it’s awful.

    Look, Disney is awful. My kids are grown, so I’ve gotten away with it but our grandkids are over quite a bit and my four year old grandson watches Disney Jr and the extent to which they are indoctrinating tiny kids in progressive hokum is appalling. Makes my as a private citizen reluctant to support the Disney Corporation financially.

    That said, DeSantis and the Florida legislature Republicans are statist thugs. DeSantis has finally earned a spot in my never vote for list. Asshole.

    1. Chic-fil-a is seeking special treatment few other's get?

      The comparison to Disney does not add up.

      1. Disney isn’t seeking special treatment. They were given that >50 years ago.

        Punishment from politicians for political speech = punishment from politicians for political speech. If you can’t see it then your politics have blinded you.

        1. Continued special treatment can just as easily be seen as a reward for their speech.

          1. “Government thuggery is excusable if it comes from my team”

            You either believe in the constitution or you don’t. You don’t. Not really.

            1. Taking away special privileges from a rich corporation few others have is NOT thuggery!!!!

              As a principle, punishing private political speech in a free country is abhorrent -- we no longer live in a free country.

              As far as I am concerned we are in the midst of a cold civil war and progressives are the aggressors -- unilateral surrender is a losers game.

              1. He told you why he did it. He didn’t mind the privileged last week. He’s punishing Disney because they pissed him off. That’s abusing his power.

                And screwing over his own taxpayers to boot.

                1. Getting rid of crony "capitalism" is a net plus, bottom line. I will shed zero tears making even an evil corporation like Disney equal with all others.

                  And pushback is needed -- if you can get progressives to now call a truce I am all in.

                2. Are you seriously claiming a politician might do something for other than virtuous reasons? I'm sure you intend this to only apply to Florida.

                  1. And I'm sure a Democrat would never resort to such petty thuggery, either, amiright?

  10. I'll take the opposite position as @decline to state.

    I have no objections WHY Florida did this, but I object strongly at the sloppy legislation that ignores unintended side effects.

    It was Disney that started this culture war skirmish, and it did not begin with the bill about sex education. It began when Disney started removing all references to "boys and girls" at the park. Corporations have the right to be as political as they wish, but the interests of shareholders, and the spirit of cooperation with neighbors and the state may suffer; and deservedly so.

    But this repeal of Disney's special status, threatens to saddle all the other residents of those two counties with extra costs and higher taxes. Eventually, they may be able to balance that out with new taxes on Disney property. But at least transiently, it creates a mess harming innocent bystanders.

    Legislators should have the duty to explore and consider all possible effects of a proposed bill before voting on it.

    1. Don't sweat it. I mean, really.

      Look- I will take bets that nothing is going to happen. This isn't about doing anything. This is about posturing. This is about DeSantis being able to claim that he was all tough on "woke" corporations and having his press secretary send out a million more tweets that use the word grooming for the rabid not-quite-QAnon base.

      The bill has a sunset provision. It also runs afoul of other Florida law .... and that's before even getting into possible First Amendment issues (and the fact that it's stupid and counterproductive is just a cherry on top).

      Sometime in the future, it will go away. Maybe there will be some sort of concession-that-really isn't, so DeSantis can crow about a victory even though there isn't one. And the various people who can't remember things beyond the latest outrage will only remember that HE STOOD UP FOR THEM not what actually happened. Or even why they were angry at Disney, out of the blue.

      The only long-term ramification is that Disney (which has always been the fourth rail of Florida politics) will be re-calibrating its long-term approach, which will likely hurt Florida going forward. Because the Presidential run is just 2024. The House of Mouse ...it has a much longer memory.

      1. I think you underestimate just how sick and tired normal people are getting of woke corporations.

        And wokism and crybullies in general.

        1. " just how sick and tired normal people are getting of woke corporations. "

          Racists are not normal people. They're Republicans.

          Superstitious gay-bashers are not normal. They are bigoted right-wingers.

          Religious righties are not normal people. They are comically gullible, obsolete conservatives.

          Xenophobes are not normal people. They are the disaffected, un-American right-wing fringe.

          Carry on, clingers. So far as better Americans permit, and not an inch beyond.

          1. Woke people are not normal people, Peter Breath

            1. Tips concerning what is normal from from socially inept incels, on-the-spectrum right-wing fringe-dwellers, neurodivergent conservative misfits, and antisocial culture war losers are always a treat.

              1. We know you are all that, Cum Breath.

          2. It's funny that you think it's Republicans who are racist, when it was Democrats who fought the Civil War to preserve slavery, and upon failing that, implemented the KKK and Jim Crow to try to emulate that, and to this day insist that minorities can't succeed unless they are held to a lower standard than that of whites, and are encouraging segregation in colleges because minorities are too fragile to have ceremonies with white-skinned people, and works hard to destroy any minority who strays even a little bit from the Democrat program.

            Maybe, if Democrats weren't bitterly clinging to their racist, bigoted ways, this country would be much better off!

            1. This is the level of thought your blog attracts, Volokh Conspirators.

              This is why mainstream legal academia does not respect you.

              (Some of Billy's best work)

              1. Wasn't it just a couple of years ago that the Smithsonian put out a PDF that suggested that expecting individualistic cultural things like "work hard", "show up on time", and so forth were "White Supremacy" beliefs?

                I remember that document well, because of the way it slandered both whites and minorities -- but it was particularly insulting to minorities.

            2. Did you fall asleep in 1964 and just now wake up?

              1. So let me get this straight:

                Your's saying that the re-segregation of college ceremonies, which has been happening in the last few years, is a figment of my imagination.

                Or that the destruction of $2 billion in small businesses, many of which were minority owned, in minority neighborhoods, in the last couple of years, cheered on by white liberals in their gated communities, is somehow a figment of my imagination.

                Or the defunding of the police, that have resulted in a significant increase of murder among minorities, is a figment of my imagination.

                Or that alleged Systemic Racism, that is particularly bad in cities with their ghettos and failed school systems, is the result of Republican racism, despite these cities being controlled by Democrats for decades, on all of city, State, and Federal levels -- and with Republicans (even minority ones) still unable to win races in these cities. In this case, you can't have both: either Systemic Racism exists, and Democrats are thus racist, or Democrats aren't racist, and it doesn't exist. I take Democrats on their word at this: Systemic Racism exists, and they cultivate it.

                As a final consideration, all I have to do to see that racism in the Democrat Party is alive and well is to look and see what is acceptable language among Democrats, when it comes to discussing the likes of Clarence Thomas, Larry Elder, and Candace Owens, among others. After looking into that, it becomes clear to me that, regardless of what happened in 1964, Democrats are still racist, and when they have an acceptable outlet to let their hair loose, they revel in their racism.

                1. Funny, actual black people don't agree with your take on which party is worse for black people.

                  As to your take on what language is acceptable, your are so clearly ignoring which party includes the modern KKK, neo-nazis, race warriors, and those who wonder why they can't say the N-word.

                  In general, you are pointing out stuff that is indeed problematic with the Dems and completely ignoring the GOP's far worse issues on race. It's pretty funny, actually; I can't tell if you're willfully blind, in bad faith, or just forgot to look at your own party.

                  1. Sarcastro, you died that Democrats had done anything racist since 1964, and got several examples from the past few years pointed out to you.
                    Now you are arguing that black people like Democrats, so Democrats can't be racist? Were Democrats racist before 1964, when blacks voted 90% is support of them? Even in the South?

                    But if you want to whatabbout the issue - a major movement of the goalposts - how about you actually specify exactly what the "far worse issues" the GOP has. I'm curious as to what you can come up with. I'll bet it's a Vox cut-and-paste.

                  2. "As to your take on what language is acceptable, your are so clearly ignoring which party includes the modern KKK, neo-nazis, race warriors, and those who wonder why they can't say the N-word."

                    Which Party "includes" the modern KKK? I remember a sitting former KKK member who was a sitting Senator and who only "left" the Senate in 2006 because he died. That Senator was a Democrat.

                    As for Neo-Nazis, I remember one Richard Spencer who decided to support President Trump in 2016, but if one looked closely at what he supported, it's pretty clear he's a Wilson Democrat -- and when 2020 came around, he was so disappointed in Trump that he endorsed Joe Biden.

                    And as for "wonder[ing] why they can't say the N-word" -- it's not so much that we want to use it, as it is that we wonder why Democrats can so freely use it without any repercussions.

                    "In general, you are pointing out stuff that is indeed problematic with the Dems and completely ignoring the GOP's far worse issues on race." I'd like to know how the GOP is far worse on race than Democrats. Republicans have not been in a position to help with race issues for decades, yet Democrats have ... and yet, the issues harming race never seem to go away, and if anything they just get worse. And any minority that dares suggest there's something wrong, is said to be "acting white", or "the Black face of White Supremacy", among other things, and dressing up as a gorilla and throwing eggs at such a person only produces a blip in the news cycle (and only Republicans can seem to notice those blips).

      2. I think you hit the nail on the head again

      3. The conservative version of virtue signaling.

      4. Imagining Disney paying a price for woke is akin to imagining CNN collapsing in ratings. Janet Jackson paying for an wardrobe malfunction.

        1. This is not the marketplace, it's the government. Most nonfascist societies are pretty good at distinguishing.

    2. But this repeal of Disney's special status, threatens to saddle all the other residents of those two counties with extra costs and higher taxes. Eventually, they may be able to balance that out with new taxes on Disney property. But at least transiently, it creates a mess harming innocent bystanders.

      Legislators should have the duty to explore and consider all possible effects of a proposed bill before voting on it.

      I agree whole-heartedly with this. It sounds the special status the state of Florida granted Disney over 50 years ago worked to the benefit of the taxpayers. If I’m wrong about that, then I’m open to repealing it but this sounds like it could be a case of cutting off one’s nose to spite one’s face.

      Also, I’m not comfortable at all with this change being done because Disney executives spoke out in opposition to a law. Even if it’s not unconstitutional, that should not be the basis of a government’s decision.

      1. It's worth noting that about 80,000 of the people in the counties that will be impacted by this are also Disney employees. Probably serveral times that amount are employed in support of those 80,000 employees and many, many more thousdands employed because of the tourism those 80,000 employees support.

        Of course, Trump lost both Orange and Osceola counties in 2020 by about 8 percentage points so maybe Desantis doesn't care what the voters there think.

    3. "threatens to saddle all the other residents of those two counties with extra costs and higher taxes"

      So far its opponents of the law saying that. Let's see if actually true. I note if that elimination of this is such a sweat deal for Disney, why didn't they propose it years ago?

      Its not effective until June, 2023 in any event. Plenty of time to re-do to eliminate problems.

      1. There's a billion in bonds that will transfer to the counties to pay. So that level of debt is going to have an impact even though they also get the taxes. Disney doesn't have the same economic concerns as two highly populated counties in Florida do.

        As Loki mentions up-thread, there is a lot of value in being able to avoid bureaucratic red tape and delays in new projects. The lost revenue as projects take longer could easily overwhelm other costs associated with running your own government.

        The June 2023 date was probably meant as a way to give Disney a second chance and come back to Desantis and tell him how much they love him. I don't think Disney is going to be gaslit by this little autocrat.

        1. Just because they are wiping out the Reedy creek special improvement district doesn't mean they can't set up a new special improvement district with a different governance and permit approval process, and still have a special tax rate for the district to pay for the improvements.

        2. One might argue that a billion or more in debt might mean that you're not properly managing your district.

          I do, however, agree that government shouldn't be taking action based on the political leanings of those the actions will affect.

          1. "I do, however, agree that government shouldn't be taking action based on the political leanings of those the actions will affect."

            Fortunately, only the governments run by the party you don't like does that.

  11. Under my state's constitutional law precedent a municipal subdivision, in its role as a government entity, has no right to complain that an act of the state is unconstitutional.

    Aside from the legal question, if sex ed in Florida schools is the hill Disney wants to die on, let it die there.

    1. Good catch. Same in my state.

  12. "Legislators should have the duty to explore and consider all possible effects of a proposed bill before voting on it."

    You mean like we have to pass the bill (Obama Care) so we know what's in it?

    Disney will just become another business within the counties and towns and pay taxes to them.

    1. "Disney will just become another business within the counties and towns and pay taxes to them."
      True, eventually that will happen. But the costs of providing fire, ambulance, police, water, sewer, sanitation, services will land on the counties on the same day the governor signs the bill.

      They may go bankrupt before they can pass new taxes on Disney and start collecting them.

      The local people are saying an immediate 20% tax hike on everyone in the counties.

      1. So for this to be true Disney I’d now overpaying taxes based on their special deal?
        Doubt it.

        1. Yes. Disney is essentially paying taxes they wouldn't otherwise have to pay if operating normally. Because they want to buy from the state the special privilege of not having to do everything through local government.

          Essentially "if we pay for our own 'public' services and otherwise abide by the law we do'nt have to go ask the county for permission to build a new hotel or to close all of the streets so we can hold a marathon or to make substantive changes to our fireworks shows that annoy the neighbors or a thousand other things." Essentially Disney buys there way out of all the hassles that Disneyland has to deal with in Anaheim.

          Disney loses that control. But they also no longer have to pay for those services. Now the neighbors (everybody else in those counties) have to chip in as well.

          Clearly Disney thinks that control over process is worth the expense but there is an expense that just goes away (and that ignores that the counties will also have to absorb the billion dollars of debt that Disney services through Reedy Creek bonds).

      2. "land on the counties on the same day the governor signs the bill"

        Not true, the bill has a June, 2023 effective date.

        1. More specifics, which I found at coffeeandcovid.substack.com:

          As with all things, it’s not quite that simple. HB3C was a simple one-and-a-half page bill eliminating ALL independent special districts enacted before the 1968 Florida Constitution. Six districts including Disney’s and several within the Villages of Florida are set to be dissolved on June 1, 2023 — after the upcoming midterm elections and after the 2023 legislative session. But — significantly — the legislature can still reauthorize them.

          Leftist rag Mediate thinks this is just raw political skullduggery. It says it amounts to Republicans holding Disney hostage. Mediate whined “the bill essentially sets up a system of legislative blackmail … The legislature is putting Disney on a leash[.]” Well, good.

          In less hysterical language, it looks like lawmakers are giving Disney one more chance to clean up its act. The special district isn’t ending now, it won’t end till next year, but it WILL end unless the Legislature changes its mind and re-authorizes the district.

          My guess is that, even if the legislature DOES re-authorize the special district, it would almost certainly be on a rolling basis at that point. In other words, not automatic like it is now. Which is a huge improvement over the current status quo, if you ask me. So even if the Mouse doesn’t ultimately lose its special district, the district will always be in the crosshairs from now on.

          The biggest reason for the repeal is not merely that Disney politically supports allowing teachers to teach material to 5-8 year olds that many of us believe constitutes grooming. The biggest reason is that according to rumor, Disney World employees have been involved in grooming kids again and again throughout the park's history -- and so long as the district is in place, the company's own police can and often do dispose of such charges without the public ever finding out about them. It's about time for that ability to be taken away.

          1. "The biggest reason is that according to rumor, Disney World employees have been involved in grooming kids again and again throughout the park's history -- and so long as the district is in place, the company's own police can and often do dispose of such charges without the public ever finding out about them. It's about time for that ability to be taken away."

            You have no idea what you're talking about, and you really should be ashamed of yourself.

            But I doubt you have that capacity.

          2. "According to rumor..."

          3. That Disney keeps hiring people who have been nailed for grooming kids and that multiple stings have nailed Disney employees for pedo issues.

      3. What level of service do they have to provide?

        And I don't doubt Disney approved a lot of things that may not have been kosher over the local code, maybe daily fines for code variations can make up the rest (Florida is already known for that: "Florida Woman Faces Fines Over $100,000 For Parking On Part Of Her Lawn because her car's tires touched part of her lawn")

        But really the issue is just a red herring, Orlando is still going to be a friendly district for Disney, and it's to both of their interests to work the issues out, especially since Orlando has no obligation to continue the current level of municipal services that Disney is currently providing to itself.

      4. And those "local people" are nearly all Democrats, many of whom are black.

    2. You mean like we have to pass the bill (Obama Care) so we know what's in it?

      Ah, that old chestnut. Showing your age, Mr. Bumble. Maybe you could update with some more recent examples:

      We have to pass Trump's tax cut bill to know what's in it!

      We have to elect Republicans to Congress to know what they'll do once in power!

      1. "We have to elect Republicans to Congress to know what they'll do once in power!"

        You make it sound like Republicans have a monopoly on that, when it's true of all politicians.

        1. Democrats still run on a platform and make promises. They may under-deliver, but they stand for something.

          Republicans stopped doing that. Scott actually committed a faux-pas when he tried to say what they'd do if they regained control in the Senate.

          1. Well, if you're going to put it that way, President Trump was different, because many Republicans saw someone who tried to keep his promises for once.

            Republicans in general are tired of getting politicians who promise things, but then make excuses as to why they can't be done. While I didn't personally trust Trump the first time around, one of the things I saw in him was someone who attempted to keep his promises.

            1. Trump's main promises were about owning the libs.

              SimonP's point about the GOP becoming a reactionary party not an idea-based one is not contradicted by the example of Trump.

              1. I seriously doubt either you or SimonP follow Republican politics close enough to know what Republicans want, what their principles are, how well typical Republicans do in fulfilling those promises, how well President Trump did in attempting to fulfill those promises, or how frustrated rank-and-file Republicans are at how, even with President Trump was in power, he had to fight Republicans as much as, if not more than Democrats, to try to accomplish what he promised.

                And I'm willing to bet the two of you are aligned enough with Democrat goals that you wouldn't recognize when they exercise get power at all cost, even if it hurts us in the long term, so long as it gets us what we want now tactics, and you probably even think they are doing the right thing, opposing those nasty evil Republicans who should be stopped at all costs.

      2. The former is an allusion to something that was actually said (by Pelosi, I think); the latter are things you made up. I don’t see how made up partisan stuff can be the new version of stuff that actually happened. Sounds revisionist.

        1. The 2017 tax bill was being hand-written in the hours before package. No one could reasonably know what was in it, apart from the headline giveaways.

          The GOP strategy for the 2020 and 2022 elections have been quite explicit in dropping any pretense that they stand for any policy apart from their return to power.

          1. I'm curious as to where you say the Republican Party has been explicit that they stand for no policy except power. I'd like to see a quote from the Party on that - seems like you must have special sources that news companies and search engines can't access.

            Since you missed it, there was an official GOP platform for 2020, and many state parties had their own state platform as well. None of this was secret - you can still find most of them online.

            Even now in 2022, several states have or are developing their 2022 Congressional platforms - you can go online and look them up, too.

            And if you think that every Republican must agree on all elements of the platform or it doesn't exist, then you must be terribly confused by the Democrats! Pelosi and Bush, Manchin and Sanders, oh my!

  13. I'm wondering if the principles underlying the Dartmouth College case of 1819 might apply here, with the district having essentially been chartered by the state constituting a contract that cannot be interfered with under the Constitution.

    Moreover, would it be acceptable for the governor and legislature to conspire to revoke the city charter of a city in which voters voted to elect members of a different political party than the governor and the legislative majority? How about abolishing a county and its government and putting its residents under the authority of a board appointed by the governor and confirmed by the legislature because it was a blue island in a red state (or vice versa)?

    1. Cities and counties are creatures of the state and their governments can be modified or even eliminated pretty freely. There might be state constitutional limits.

      "governor and legislature to conspire"

      Passing laws is not a "conspiracy".

  14. Professor Volokh says:

    If, for instance, a committee chairman switches parties (or otherwise offends party leadership with his political positions), he could be stripped of the powers that his colleagues have given him, even if a low-level government employee can't be. Likewise if a state cabinet member who has been chosen by a governor council is removed from office by the governor (assuming state law allows such removals) based on the cabinet member's political speech. I take it that when a city council appoints a mayor or a city manager, it can (if state law so allows) remove that official as well, including based on the official's speech or other political activity.

    My challenge to this analogy is this: in each of those examples, the political disagreements relate much more directly to the political powers the actor is exercising. It would be one thing if Disney was being stripped of municipal powers if the legislature disagreed with Disney's exercise of those powers. And it would be similar if the legislature's disagreement with Disney went to its confidence in Disney's moral ability to exercise those municipal powers. The legislature can obviously say "I will sanction you with removal from power if you abuse that power." But it is another thing if there is no real relationship between the political disagreement and the sanction.

    [All this said, my initial sense is that, while retaliatory legislation relating to special privileges is likely improper for the reasons Professor Volokh sets forth in part [1], principled judicial review of such legislation is at least very difficult, for the reasons set forth in parts [2] and [3], unless a court is willing to determine that the legislature had an improper purpose based on the statements of individual legislators.]

    1. Seems to me that while this conversation is interesting any resolution of this is a long way off.

      First, the bill has yet to be signed and if and when it is will not go into effect until 2023.

      Second, it is sure to be litigated and we all know how long it takes for cases to wend their way through the court system.

      While it is pretty clear that this is a political move I wonder if the state is provide cover by also revoking the special district status of several other entities. Also, while it is hard to get straight information, I seem to recall that one of the justifications claimed was that these districts violate the 1968 Florida Constitution.

      1. Please see jdgalt1 post above.

  15. Gene, the nearest cases I can think of are the ones dealing with Chick Fil A, where municipalities refused to grant a concession in an airport or ballpark or such because they didn’t like the companies opposition to gay marraige and such. But that is not perfectly analogous, as ChickFilA was being treated worse than a similarly situated company. In this case Disney has received very special treatment and by withdrawing that treatment Disney is likely to be in the same position as any other business, not worse. Some news reports have pointed out that they did not withdraw Dinsey eligibility to receive funds from Orange Co. tourist tax, as does Universal and other Busineses in the county, nor withdrawing Disneys deal to receive certain credits for bringing jons to the area. My point being, I am not sure Disney has anything to complain about, they are being treated on an equal basis as every other business. Are they necessarily entitlled to special treatment in perpetuity?

    1. I believe that along with Disney five or six other special districts will also loss there status.

      1. Before I get accused of being a "knuckle-dragger" that should be "lose" not loss and "their" not there. Maybe Reason needs an edit button.

        1. Reason will get an edit button right after Elon Musk buys it.

  16. Ha they were given a special perk. It certainly can be taken away. Actually maybe should be taken away. Are all amusement parks and resorts given this perk?

    1. You know why Disney got the special perk? To get them to move to Orlando. You know what Disney should do if Florida takes away the special perk? Move elsewhere.

      Not that I think Disney would have to do more than announce it. After that they could stay where they are and demand sweeteners.

      1. 25,000 acres in a warm weather state east of the Mississippi river near an international airport and close to the ocean for cruises. With a Democratic controlled government or you risk laws the "Disney creators" hate.

        Stop embarrassing yourself.

      2. Where exactly do you imagine they could move to?

        And it's not like the rides and other attractions and facilities (such as resort hotels) can be easily packed up and moved. To move, they would just about have to acquire a similar amount of land elsewhere and build a new park from scratch. It would take years, possibly as much as a decade before the new park could open.

        1. And ignore how many more billions it would cost.

          And having to deal with all the environmental laws and building codes they did not have to deal with in building WDW.

          The sheer amount of money it would cost would lead to shareholder lawsuits. Which should be done regardless given how badly they have cratered the stock the last 12 months.

      3. They didn't move anymore than Universal did

      4. You know why Disney got the special perk? To get them to move to Orlando. You know what Disney should do if Florida takes away the special perk? Move elsewhere.

        Yeah, not going to happen Stephen. There is way too much already invested over five decades into the Disney resorts for them to move out of Florida over this. But after already pledging not to financially support state Republican lawmakers (anymore) that supported H.B. 1557, they may consider supporting Democrats, or to help them in ways that don't involve election disclosure rules. And, they could also look elsewhere for expansion ideas or other business opportunities.

        1. They already gave 90+% (I think the number from the other day's thread was about 95%) of their campaign donations to Democrats.

          1. Want to make mischief? Get together a list of all the donations they've made to Republicans since 2016 or so, and get some lefty to tweet about it. The leftists will fall all over themselves saying they'll boycott Disney. The fact that 90-95% of the donations go to Democrats won't matter; they demand ideological purity.

            1. I realize that this is a popular talking point, since someone tweeted it, but if you just stop for a second and apply some logic instead of blind partisan "own the libs" sense, you might realize that there is a lot more to this than meets the eye.

              If you look at Disney as a while, including all its CALIFORNIA subsidiaries (such as Pixar and the Hollywood studios it owns) you would think that Disney donates to the Democrats, because the people there lean to the left and also donate to causes in CALIFORNIA.

              However, in terms of FLORIDA, Disney donates to the GOP- both directly and to the organizations that support the GOP. If you use the google, or spend even three seconds looking at any local sources, you can easily verify this. But you don't have to, because you can just think about it for a second- why would the GOP be angry about Disney cutting off ALL donations if it was primarily donating only to the Democrats?

              Seriously. Think about it. Wouldn't they be doing a dance? Wouldn't DeSantis have had a press release, "Look at all the money not going to those Demoncrat Groomers! WE PWNED THE LIBS!!!! Yay QAnon!!" Well, maybe a little more subtle than that. Maybe not.

              But that's what would have happened. Instead, we get the shakedown/stunt. It's a pretty simple message- "Go against me, go after my funding, this is what happens. Nice company you have there."

  17. Prof Volokh, how were the company towns of the early steelmill and coalmine days dissolved? Those would seem to be the most on-point comparisons to the revocation of Disney's status here.

  18. Well, let the fun begin; he signed the bill!

  19. Since lobbying is legal (giving of political spoils to others by giving support and benefits to the politicians), why is this (taking spoils for removing support and benefits to the politicians) a problem? Can't Disney simply support other pols who will represent them better (The Right was told Elections have consequences and all that (and boy, howdy, are we having consequences))

  20. Does Ron DeSantis remind anyone else of Richard Nixon and his enemies list? (Showing my age here, but Nixon is not someone to be emulated.)

    1. No, he does not.

      What was Disney thinking?

      1. Disney might have been thinking it doesn't like conservative Republican bigots any more than most Americans do.

        Carry on, clingers. Until replacement.

        1. How will you pecker breaths rrplace anything?

          1. Elderly right-wingers take their stale, ugly conservative thinking to the grave every day.

            Simultaneously, younger and better, more diverse Americans enter our society and the electorate.

            The clingers are replaced.

            The natural course. The American way. Like a newborn baby, it just happens every day.

            Maybe if conservatives and Republicans pray on it a spell, the Rapture will save them!

            1. Cock breaths like you are in no eay making any new Americans.

            2. Of course, with the abortion rates the way they are, those "younger and better" people are, more often than not, being raised by the very "bitter clingers" you despise, so you probably ought to be wary of depending on them for your future.

              That, and even the most progressive of people can only tolerate so much rising crime, destroyed businesses, and desolate of economies, before they finally say "screw it! Republicans may be awful, but at least crime seems to go down while they are in power!" and vote for them.

    2. Not really. The main difference is that DeSantis is reasonably open and transparent about what he's doing, and he is using normal political processes to do it.

      That doesn't mean it's not a 1st Amendment violation, there's a decent case that it is. However, just like the unconstitutional BCRA, this is a normal piece of legislation subject to judicial review.

      If his staff burglarized Disney headquarters to find out what they're doing, or he destroyed voice mails to cover his tracks, or if his retaliation against Disney was some secret campaign hidden from the courts, then you might have a case.

      1. There is nothing "open [or] transparent" about the "Don't Say Gay" law.

        1. What's not open or transparent of the bill? It's only 5 pages, so surely you can tell us exactly what your in-depth analysis has revealed.

    3. Honestly, he seems more like Putin to me than Nixon. His moves to resurrect the early 20th century bigotry against homosexuals is certainly out of the same book. His disdain of media in general. Bullying corporations that don't toe the line. I don't recall Nixon being so populist and nationalist in approach.

      1. I'm not sure what he is yet (but he's not Nixon who was driven by paranoia). Is DeSantis a disciple of Bannon's economic nationalism? Has made any public statements about Russia's invasion of Ukraine?

    4. No. Not even a little bit.

      Stretch before making some leaps in the future.

  21. The NRA analogy is not quite on the mark, as the Reedy Creek Improvement District Act doesn't name Disney in any of its 103 pages. Similarly, neither the corporation nor its officers are beneficiaries of political appointments.
    Reedy Creek created an entity with extraordinary powers to set its own building codes, wastewater standards, and much more, run by a Board of Supervisors elected by the landowners (natural or corporate) voting in proportion to their holdings. The unusual result is that Disney has extraordinary power, but power as a voter, and when Florida retaliates against them they are punishing a voter for its political speech.

    It is true that Disney has no right to its special status, but the principle elucidated in Perry v. Sinderman

    For at least a quarter-century, this Court has made clear that even though a person has no "right" to a valuable governmental benefit and even though the government may deny him the benefit for any number of reasons, there are some reasons upon which the government may not rely.

    and applied there to free speech protections would seem to apply here as well.

    1. Voting is not a benefit, and these voters will still be able to vote in their local municipal and/or county elections.

    2. elected by the landowners (natural or corporate) voting in proportion to their holdings.

      It's kind of incredible that the Democrats would not only allow this kind of thing, but *insist* that it remain in place.

      1. I count 129 independent special districts in Florida. One acre-one vote is often how their boards are elected, Reedy Creek is not a one-off on that account.

  22. I'm glad no one here is making the stupid argument (which was very popular right after Citizens United was announced) that Disney is a corporation, not a person, and the First Amendment only applies to natural persons.

    I guess it just took the right type of case for people to see the light.

    1. This law doesn't stop Disney from saying whatever they want. It merely re-evaluates their special relationship to the government.

      As for Citizens United, perhaps it was wrong to declare the organization a person, but that has nothing to do with the issue at hand. The fact is, the government itself, in arguing against Citizens United, suggested that they have the power to deny even the New York Times from publishing op-eds in election seasons.

      Of course, the difference between Citizens United and Disney is that Citizens United was founded expressly for political speech, their political speech was created to fulfill their charter, everyone who donated to them did so to further this speech, and they didn't have any special status with regards to other government entities that could be revoked at a whim.

      Seriously, if the Supreme Court had decided against Citizens United, regardless of the reasoning used, it would have meant that free speech was a dead letter of the law. We would be powerless to criticize political candidates 90 days before an election. How in the world would that be a good thing?

  23. Curious as to how *Hunter v. Pittsburgh* and *Trenton v. New Jersey* play into this, as those cases (still good law, as far as I know) confirm the idea that states have Plenary power over their political subunits, which is not subject to restriction in any case.

    Its not clear why 1A concerns would punch through this, when no other claim would.

    1. Nobody is claiming the District has 1A rights.

      1. The Disney company has First Amendment rights, including the right to be free of governmental retaliation for the exercise of such rights.

        1. Since the special district isn't Disney, eliminating the special district isn't retaliation against Disney.

        2. Disney does, but Faceh cited two cases where cities sued the state and lost. If the District sued Florida it would not be able to assert Disney's 1A rights, and has none of its own.

        3. It is not the Disney Special District.

          The Special District is being removed, as is the state's right. And given that the Constitution of the US recognizes states only and the FL constitution does not mention the Reedy Creek Special District, there is no option to really dispute this in court.

  24. I can't find it now, but back in the 2000's I think The Atlantic had an expose how corporations like Disney used things like "special tax jurisdictions" to shield themselves from local use taxes and not contribute to things like fire and police protection for communities that lived right next to those areas. Liberals were all for stripping those corporations for those "special" rights, that is until they aren't apparently....

    Now I would prefer to live in a country that doesn't have to cancel Mickey or anyone else, but leftists created this. Now they get to enjoy the turnabout some.

  25. If anyone is wondering, this is what the beginning of fascism looks like.

    1. I was thinking this is what campus speech codes look like. What tenure track looks like.

    2. Forcing people to violate their strongly held Christian beliefs = progress.

      Rescinding special tax and government privileges for a multi-billion dollar corporation = fascism.

      And this is why we live in clown world.

      1. The government punishing a company for expressing a political opinion is part of the path to fascism.

        And in the US Christians are the ones imposing their beliefs on everyone else.

        1. Send in the clowns...oh wait Molly is already here....

          The lack of any type of self awareness is....interesting.....to say the least.

        2. Did you make this point in defense of attempts to ban Chick-fil-a from various locations, or is it just relevant when your ox is gored?

          I don't particularly like this paradigm of shutting companies up. That said, I also would rather companies tend their knitting and not opine on political matters *whether or not their opinion agrees with mine*. If companies are punished in various ways for doing that, and stop, I'd be happy.

      2. If you believe bigotry is improved when wrapped in religion, you must be a Republican, a conservative, a Volokh Conspiracy fan, and a doomed culture war loser.

        Carry on, clingers. More gullibility, maybe?

    3. There are a great many examples of fascism that have been happening over the last several presidential administrations. And likely back before I started paying attention to politics. Sadly it seems to me people think that the 'other' side is always the one being fascist.

    4. I thought it was when the WH lobbied social media to ban certain viewpoints.

  26. Disney is, IIRC, an Independent Special District.

    The state of Florida cannot, by an act of legislation, simply take that away.

    https://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2018/Chapter189/All

    Section 189.072:

    (a) In order for the Legislature to dissolve an active independent special district created and operating pursuant to a special act, the special act dissolving the active independent special district must be approved by a majority of the resident electors of the district or, for districts in which a majority of governing body members are elected by landowners, a majority of the landowners voting in the same manner by which the independent special district’s governing body is elected. If a local general-purpose government passes an ordinance or resolution in support of the dissolution, the local general-purpose government must pay any expenses associated with the referendum required under this paragraph.

    From my brief research, this act by the legislature is itself illegal. Good job "small government" dipshits!

    1. I referenced that above. It’s questionable at best.

      This is all theater for the base.

      1. I didn't see anyone cite the law, so I must've missed it, sorry.

        1. I just mentioned it in passing.

          That said, for reasons …. It’s not a slam dunk. Partly because GOP administrations have been shaping the judiciary in Florida for a while.

          1. Partly because GOP administrations have been shaping the judiciary in Florida for a while.

            "Shaping" is one way to put it. Packing it with partisan hacks that will let the GOP do whatever it wants is another.

            1. Frankly, when any one party gets enough control they pack it with partisan hacks to let their party do whatever it wants. Neither is right or good for us peasants.

          2. IANAL. But I thought there were limits on how much a current legislature could constrain the ability of future legislatures ability to enact/change laws. I think as a matter of policy letting the people currently in charge lock in rules that they like is unwise. That is what constitutional changes are for, no?

    2. You think amending statutes is illegal? Can you elaborate?

    3. Are you suggesting that 189.072 itself cannot be amended by the Legislature? They'd more or less have to make an amendment to the state constitution if they wanted to bind themselves like that and make it stick.

      1. I don't think anyone is saying that. The problem is that the Florida Legislature did not, apparently, "amend" 189.072. They amended another provision (specifically, 189.0311) that refers to 189.072 only to imply that it does not, for some reason, apply.

        The problem with this is that the special district statutes seem designed to avoid this kind of willy-nilly creation and dissolution of special districts. This makes sense, because the point of these special districts is to provide an alternative way to govern, fund, and build infrastructure. You'll have various reliance interests of people who own land and live within them, so Florida's attempt to protect their rights and settled expectations seems like a good thing.

  27. This sure seems legal, yeah.

    But holy shit the number of people here saying 'nice corporation there. It'd be a shame if something happened to it. So you'd better keep your mouth shut.'

    Jesus fuck, people, that's not how freedom works! It is, however, exactly how fascism works, right down to the government-corporate 'partnership.'

    1. +1

      I haven't thought a lot about it, but off the top giving businesses governmental powers in the first place seems unwise.

      But once you have done so, revoking them as punishment for speech seems very wrong. It is such a short step from there to 'nice setup you have here ... very profitable, I'd wager ... say, did I mention my cousin is looking for a job?'.

    2. Democrats did the exact same thing in 2020, except they were in Congress instead of a statehouse.

      1. Huh? What in particular are you referring to?

        1. Congressional Democrats dragged tech executives to Washington to berate them about supposedly insufficient censorship of "misinformation" like the Hunter Biden laptop story. They've continued it since then with the "SAFE TECH Act" to impose more requirements on platforms to censor.

          1. That's a conspiracy theory.

            THIS is wide open and obvious, and you - YOU are proud of it.

            Here's a hint - the ones who say 'we'd better get authoritarian on them before they get more fascist on us?' That's how fascism always starts.

            Your victimization complex has lead you into endorsing fascism.

            1. "Here's a hint - the ones who say 'we'd better get authoritarian on them before they get more fascist on us?' That's how fascism always starts."

              I dunno much about the early days of Mussolini, who was the OG fascist, but I disagree as far as the Nazis go. They went all-the-way fascist when their political opponents weren't going fascist or authoritarian on them to speak of.

              1. Nazis absolutely rationalized their tactics as a way to prevent Bolsheviks from taking over. Said Bolshevism was, of course, a Jewish plot.

                1. Nazis didn’t invent the Bolshevik/Jewish connection. Most of Europe in the twenties made the connection. Read Hillaire Beloc. Dismiss him as an proto-Nazi and return to your comfortable fantasy world. Rinse and repeat.

            2. "That's a conspiracy theory."

              Social media DIDN'T completely suppress the story after the hearing with the Democrats?

              That is your argument?

              Sorry if you dislike the rules your side set, but those are the rules.

            3. It's a conspiracy theory that Democrats in Congress hauled Marc Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey to Washington and harangued them about their platforms not doing enough to censor "misinformation"? And that the message was that they needed to do more, or else Congress would change laws on them?

              Take a good look at the people who were claiming a few years ago that Karl Popper's paradox of tolerance meant they had to be intolerant of people who disagree with them, and invoke the force of law to ban whatever they call "hate speech". It's why "cancel culture" became a point of concern.

              They started down the road of fascism, and they are the ones who started out preaching authoritarianism and intolerance.

              1. Weird you left out your whole laptop nonsense there. Suddenly describing a pretty common story of avoidance of congressional action leading to industrial self-regulation that is the same as the oil industry, the film industry, the music industry, etc. etc.

          2. It's idiots like you that are why we can't have nice things.

            There is ample evidence that bad state actors are using social media platforms to promote misinformation, even genocide. Russia did attempt to influence American elections through manipulating social media, even if you'd prefer to discount the actual effect of their attempts. We have a growing body of evidence that social media algorithms are designed to make people more upset, which makes them more susceptible to misinformation (and advertising, one might surmise).

            This isn't just about the "Hunter Biden laptop story." The insistence of a cadre of morons to make every damn issue into a hyper-partisan wedge issue is making it impossible for us to actually address any of this stuff. You need to unplug yourself and use your own god damn brain for once.

          3. This is idiotic. Putting on dog and pony shows where they grandstand at somebody in hearings and actually passing laws are in no way equivalent.

            What is it with conservatives and thinking "Some Democrats said" and "Republicans passed a law doing" something are one in the same? Probably because it's the only way you can justify your "both sides are the same, so I'll vote for Republicans" bullshit.

    3. I mean, speech has consequences, or so I've been told when other people are getting cancelled as a consequence of their speech.

      But I do agree with your point about this being exactly how fascism works.

      1. Dude.

        Speech has consequences, but not *government* consequences.

        Listen to yourself. Private action is not authoritarianism. This is.

        1. Removing special benefits is not treating a corporation worse.

          It is treating them identically to other corporations.

          1. It's treating them worse than you were treating them. Which is the point.

            1. "Not treating better" is not the same as "treating differently than others".

              Disney has plenty of perks it already has that it should not. Losing this is hardly anything. We should adjust IP law to be something rational. Disney clearly would not like that.

              1. Disney has plenty of perks it already has that it should not. Losing this is hardly anything.

                This is some pretty good logic - it can prove a whole lot!

                "Christians have plenty of tax perks already that they should not. Losing them is hardly anything.'

                1. Freedom of Religion is a specifically listed Constitutional right. Unsure where "Disney gets perks in perpetuity" is in the Constitution. Perhaps one of the penumbras.

                  1. OK then, 'Republicans have plenty of tax perks...'

                    Your argument that this is not actually targeting Disney for revenge because it's a previous agreement between the government and Disney does not hold any water at all.

                    It may make this legal, as in the OP, but it does not make this somehow not motivated by revenge. I mean, revenge for coming out against a law he liked is what DeSantis is explicitly invoking!

  28. Here is the bill in it's entirety.

    HB 3C2022CCODING: Words strickenare deletions; words underlinedare additions.hb0003c-00Page 1of 2FLORI DAHOUSE OF REPRESENT AT I VESA bill to be entitled1An act relating to independent special districts; 2amending s. 189.0311, F.S.; dissolvingcertain 3independent special districts; authorizing the 4reestablishment of certain independent special 5districts; providing an effective date.67Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:89Section 1. Section 189.0311, Florida Statutes, is amended 10to read:11189.0311 Independent special districts; charter 12requirements.—13(1)Notwithstanding any general law, special act, or 14ordinance of a local government to the contrary, any independent 15special district charter enacted after September 30, 1989, shall 16contain the information required by s. 189.031(3). Recognizing 17that the exclusive charter for a community development district 18is the statutory charter contained in ss. 190.006-190.041, 19community development districts established after July 1, 1980, 20pursuant to the provisions of chapter 190 shall be deemed in 21compliance with this requirement.22(2) Notwithstanding s. 189.072(2), any independent special 23district established by a special act prior to the date of 24ratification of the Florida Constitution on November 5, 1968, 25
    HB 3C2022CCODING: Words strickenare deletions; words underlinedare additions.hb0003c-00Page 2of 2FLORI DAHOUSE OF REPRESENT AT I VESand which was not reestablished, re-ratified, or otherwise 26reconstituted by a special act or general law after November 5, 271968, is dissolved effective June 1, 2023. An independent 28special district affected by this subsection may be 29reestablished on or after June 1, 2023, pursuant to the 30requirements and limitations of this chapter.31Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2022.32

  29. You know, Eugene, it might behoove you sometimes to research the topics on which you'd like to comment, instead of pulling some handy First Amendment chestnuts out of whatever casebook you have nearby, to use in poorly-drawn analogies.

    You know - lawyerin'?

    The first problem with your commentary is that the Florida Legislature hasn't targeted Disney for its speech. It has targeted all independent special districts created by special act prior to Florida's currently-operative Constitution and not otherwise reestablished after the adoption of the 1968 Constitution. While it is true that the Legislature undertook this "clean-up" act as a way of "punishing" Disney for its "speech," the specific enactment by which it has does so does not single Disney out. So that's something your analysis needs to address.

    Second, there are many dependent and independent special districts in Florida, which must satisfy various governance requirements set forth in Florida law. They can exist for various reasons and have various powers, but the essence of a special district is that it is distinct, as a self-governing body, from municipalities, counties, and other political subdivisions of the state that have more general law-making authority. They cannot do what they are not permitted, by the law that specifically created them, to do, and generally this will mean managing infrastructure within a defined geographical area. That's all. It doesn't matter whether you choose to build a suburban community on top of it or a theme park; the law makes no distinction between these kinds of uses. The only distinction the law draws, between uses, is that you can have "inactive" special districts, which can be dissolved or merged with less rigmarole. So your reference to Disney's being a single "commercial enterprise" as somehow distinguishing is a red herring.

    Third - and this is irrelevant to the flailing on the First Amendment you're doing here but it's worth noting by, you know, lawyers - it's not at all clear that the Florida Legislature has the power to unilaterally revoke Reedy Creek's status as an independent special district. Florida law generally requires that the dissolution of an active independent special district be approved by a majority of electors resident in the district. Granted, the Legislature hand-waved at this restriction by stating, "Notwithstanding [that],...", but the law very clearly and intentionally restricts the Legislature from dissolving active independent special districts unilaterally, and there are other cross references in the relevant parts of the Florida statutes that make clear that dissolutions be made in accordance with the provisions of the law. In other words, previous Florida legislatures perfectly well understood that dissolving independent special districts could have dramatic repercussions for the people living in the counties from which they'd been carved and sought to protect them from precisely what seems likely to result from Florida's rash action here.

    It appears that the strategy here is to avoid the limitations of Florida law by choosing a convenient date (I am not sure whether citing 1968 has any legal significance here) and passing a "general law" designed to sunset independent special districts of a certain vintage. Florida law generally contemplates that special districts would be dissolved by special act - so the drafting creates a possible loophole - but in this respect the distinguishes only between (i) voluntary dissolutions and (ii) involuntary dissolutions, which may be done by (x) special act for an active special district, provided that resident electors or landowners consent or (y) special act for an inactive special district, without the requirement of a referendum. So it doesn't seem like a particularly challenging exercise of statutory construction to argue that Florida's action is not consistent with Florida law.

    Ultimately, Eugene, I think you need to take a step away from reaching for the analogy that best suits an argument that the Florida has not violated the First Amendment, and review what's actually at stake here. There is a law that creates the Reedy Creek Improvement District; it has a charter; you can piece together what a dissolution is likely to entail. What we're really talking about here is taking a district that is largely self-governed and self-financed and subjecting its landowners and residents to government by different governmental bodies.

    That's a loss of political autonomy and revenue that is akin to the harm caused by various state government efforts to limit municipalities' self-governance. We have hosts of examples and some cases on that. For example, you have Romer v. Evans, from the EPC context, which found that a Colorado constitutional amendment limiting municipalities' ability to protect LGBT people from discrimination violated the EPC. But nowadays you don't have to look far to find Republican state governments threatening local municipalities and school districts for saying the wrong things, taking the wrong political positions, adopting the wrong policy.

    Romer won't supply the standard here; but it will help to establish that there is a cognizable harm when state governments fundamentally alter the ability of governmental subdivisions to self-govern for constitutionally impermissible reasons. You're not just kicking someone off a committee because he switched parties.

    1. You know, SimonP, it would behoove you to proofread what you write so that you don't contradict yourself with the space of the same short paragraph.

      "The first problem with your commentary is that the Florida Legislature hasn't targeted Disney for its speech." Followed two sentences later with, "While it is true that the Legislature undertook this "clean-up" act as a way of "punishing" Disney for its "speech..."

      Whatever point you are trying to make about how the Florida GOPers tried to make it look like they were using a special session mere weeks after the controversy between DeSantis and Disney started to correct some general issue by not specifically mentioning Disney in the law is made moot when you then straight out admit that it is "fact" that they really were punishing Disney for their speech. You removed the fig leaf DeSantis and his minions in the legislature tried to put on it quite neatly.

      The rest of what you wrote I do find interesting and thought-provoking, but that opening really stuck out as poorly considered.

      1. You know, SimonP, it would behoove you to proofread what you write so that you don't contradict yourself with the space of the same short paragraph.

        I think what I'm saying is clear enough, when you include the sentences that you've omitted.

        1. It has targeted all independent special districts created by special act prior to Florida's currently-operative Constitution and not otherwise reestablished after the adoption of the 1968 Constitution.

          That is the one sentence that I omitted in between the two that contradict each other, and I omitted the end of the second sentence that just says the same thing as the above in a different way. "...the specific enactment by which it has does so does not single Disney out." I don't see how it makes them less contradictory.

          Let's look specifically at how this bill "does not single Disney out." How many special districts besides the Disney one are affected by this bill? According to the analysis prepared for the state Senate, five. Out of 1844 special districts that currently exist in Florida. Those other five districts affected by the bill are:

          - Bradford County Development Authority
          - Sunshine Water Control District (Broward County)
          - Eastpoint Water and Sewer District (Frankin County)
          - Hamilton County Development Authority
          - Marion County Law Library

          Somehow, I don't think that those five will have any trouble being reauthorized by the legislature. At least, I haven't heard that any of them have criticized DeSantis and the Florida GOP over H.B. 1557.

          Republicans in the Florida legislature rushed through this bill in a special session mere weeks after the controversy started because they are doing the bidding of Ron DeSantis. What kind of serious legislating is done in this way? This wasn't even something anyone was thinking about a month ago, so that it is moving this quickly with so little analysis over the actual financial implications for state and local budgets, all over 6 special districts out of 1844 is ludicrous. He's waging this war with Disney because these kinds of culture war fights have become the way to win over the Trumpian base and raise money for reelection campaigns and to raise his profile even further as the next Trump for 2024. Actually serving the interests of Floridians is not the priority, if it is even part of his thought process at all.

    2. Pretextual fig leafs only work for police.

  30. I'd like to see analysis of whether the bill DeSantis signed into law today which prohibits among other things private employers from instructing their employees that affirmative action is desirable violates the First Amendment.

    1. I suggest you look toward a less wingnutty blog for that.

      1. It is really sad to me how fascist the VC commentariat has become.

    2. You must have linked to the wrong bill, because that one doesn't say what you claim.

      1. The law says it is unlawful discrimination to instruct employees that

        An individual, by virtue of his or her race, color, sex, or national origin, should be discriminated against or receive adverse treatment to achieve diversity, equity, or inclusion.

        1. Doing that is not allowed under existing (US) anti-discrimination laws. If some AA program does that, it breaks those laws. See, for example, Ricci v. DeStefano (2009).

          1. That case was about speech, chief.

            1. No, it wasn't. It was about reverse discrimination.

              1. So then it's very much not on point to bring it up in response to:

                "The law says it is unlawful discrimination to INSTRUCT employees that..."

                1. Yes, it can be made illegal for an employer to tell employees that illegal workplace discrimination is proper.

                  1. An employer? No.

                    State instruction can be specified by the state.
                    But you're off on a much more authoritarian and general thesis, which you're wrong about.

          2. DeStefano held that in some fact-dependent circumstances, implementing affirmative action violates Title VII. Firstly, that's a prohibition on conduct, not speech, whereas the Florida law prohibits speech. Secondly, even if instructing employees that the affirmative action outlawed in DeSetafno is desirable is not protected by the First Amendment (perhaps as speech integral to unlawful conduct), the Florida law prohibits advocacy for affirmative action in general which is still legal.

            1. No, advocacy of illegal action is not generally legal. Anti-discrimination law also has a long history of prohibiting certain kinds of discriminatory speech by employers.

              1. Again, this law proscribes speech which advocates for legal conduct.

              2. No, advocacy of illegal action is not generally legal

                This is *extremely* wrong. And this is an extra wrong blog in which to bring that bullshit.

              3. Josh, no, this law prohibits a workplace environment that forces employees to be indoctrinated that specific illegal action is "right". Take your concerns up with the existing body of anti-discrimination law, which also prohibit specific patterns of workplace speech, on the basis that they go beyond pure speech.

                Sarcastr0, your weird ideas of the law are not fact. Advocacy of illegal conduct is *often* but not *generally* legal.

                1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brandenburg_v._Ohio

                  "These later decisions have fashioned the principle that the constitutional guarantees of free speech and free press do not permit a State to forbid or proscribe advocacy of the use of force or of law violation except where
                  -such advocacy is directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and
                  -is likely to incite or produce such action"

                  1. Or in the case of conspiracies, like bosses telling their employees to break the law. Or cases like Rice v. Paladin Press.

                    The critical difference here is that the employer is prohibited to "INSTRUCT" employees -- as part of their employment -- that illegal behavior is, in fact, proper. An employer can likewise be compelled to inform employees if their legal rights, of required safety precautions, and the like. It doesn't infringe the employer's speech rights because it's an integral part of workplace conduct.

                    1. Teaching that affirmative action is a thing is not a conspiracy, you utter authoritarian clown.

                      And I see you've very much climbed down from your 'advocacy of illegal action is not generally legal.'

                      You're talking out of your ass, in service of banning speech about EXISTING policies you don't like. This bad and you should feel bad.

                2. Josh, no, this law prohibits a workplace environment that forces employees to be indoctrinated that specific illegal action is "right".

                  One more time: you can only reach that conclusion if DeStefano outlawed all affirmative action. But, it did no such thing. Affirmative action remains generally legal.

                  1. Some states have outlawed it entirely, including California and Florida. But the bit of the law you quoted addresses instructing employees that it is good to do something that is illegal under federal law.

                    1. Firstly, please provide a citation for private employers using affirmative action being illegal in Florida. Secondly, what federal law? It can't be Title VII because affirmative action remains generally legal under it.

                    2. Title VII:

                      It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employer -

                      (1) to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual with respect to his compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such individual's race, color, religion, sex, or national origin

                      You think companies should be able to tell their employees it is good practice that:

                      An individual, by virtue of his or her race, color, sex, or national origin, should be discriminated against or receive adverse treatment

                      What you're defending is exactly for the employer to instruct employees that it is good to violate Title VII.

                    3. Another mistaken link, because what you actually highlighted says the opposite of what the Florida law talks about:

                      Affirmative action requirements are intended to ensure that applicants and employees of federal contractors have equal opportunity for recruitment, selection, advancement, and every other term and privilege associated with employment, without regard to their race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or status as a protected veteran.

                      (Yes, the Florida law only addresses a subset of those protected classifications. But it makes it clear that employers cannot tell their employees that it's good to penalize someone based on those protected classes.)

                    4. The law requires

                      Comparing the utilization of women and minorities to their availability; setting placement goals if women or minorities are underutilized; assessing recruitment and outreach efforts; and developing and executing action-oriented programs to address identified problems.

                      That strikes me as subjecting men and members of the majority race and religion to adverse treatment.

                    5. Implementing such requirements without breaking the law is the tricky part, yes.

                      But note the difference between words like "goals" and "outreach" and "programs to address identified problems" versus "preferences".

                  2. As I interpret this law, employers could not instruct employees on affirmative action that complies with federal law.

        2. I fail to see what the downside of "You cannot be racist towards your employees" is.

          1. The downside is the First Amendment rights of the employer may be violated (the employer disagrees with you they are being racist).

            1. They are establishing a hostile environment by teaching their employees that violating the civil rights of certain people, especially with regards to employment, is good.

            2. "The downside is the First Amendment rights of the employer may be violated (the employer disagrees with you they are being racist)."

              Who would've though the KKK would be the forefront of modern progressive thought?

              1. The KKK has free speech rights.

                1. Good to know you're on board with corporations forcing employees to undergo sensitivity training by the Klan.

                  For what it's worth, current sensitivity training is not appreciably better than if the KKK was doing it.

                  1. Good to know you're on board with corporations forcing employees to undergo sensitivity training by the Klan.

                    Never said anything like that, don't be dumb.

                    For what it's worth, current sensitivity training is not appreciably better than if the KKK was doing it.
                    You got issues.

        3. The law says it is unlawful discrimination to instruct employees that

          No it doesn't. What it makes unlawful is "Subjecting any individual, as a condition of employment…to training…that espouses..."

  31. Have libertarians ever held up Disney as a counter-example to those who argue against private roads, police, etc.? I'm frankly shocked I've heard way more about sea-steading, the NY subway, and the Indiana toll road than Disney in this context.

    1. You just haven't read enough libertarian material. Here you go: https://reason.com/1975/10/01/learning-economics-from-walt-d/

  32. Interesting comments by left libs so far. To address the most repeated ones:

    1. Sexual education (aka how humans reproduce) is taught in middle school/high school not K-3 and should not be taught in these grades.
    2. A person's sexual orientation (straight, gay or bi) is a personal decision that has nothing to do with public education. Period.
    3. "Gender Identity" is not a sexual preference, but an emotional decision made as one becomes an adult. Having "therapists" roaming the schools to market their beliefs to a five year old is ridiculous. "Tommy you play with your sister's Barbie dolls..you should be castrated". It is child abuse.
    4. Libs always say "it is the science"..well evolution has created two sexes..and your are born one or the other (yes in some very rare cases a person can have both sexual organs but that is not being debated). You can chose to live as another sex but again has NOTHING to do with public education.
    5. Disney "wokes' getting upset. For every one of the little wokes, there are 100 kids just as smart who want their jobs. Film schools produce thousands of young smart imaginative grads every year, and they would love the opportunity which today is often given to those with family or cultural connections. I know of three neighborhood kids who went to the best film schools, got good grades, interned (for free at studios) and when they graduated years ago could never get into a studio. Why companies put up with this shit I don't know. Leave your politics at the door, what you do on your own time is fine but not here.

    If Disney wants to move, fine..honestly Florida is the place most folks who want liberty are moving. Not having roaming zealots evangelizing their own sexual or emotional choices to five year olds is one more reason to move there for many

    1. Wow. Straw man much?

    2. " honestly Florida is the place most folks who want liberty are moving "

      Is it the book-banning that attracts your kind of libertarians, clinger?

      1. Book burning seems to be in vogue in Ithaca NY or Cambridge. Maybe Oberlin...

    3. 1) You're pretending "Sometimes two boys love eachother the same way a boy and girl typically do, and that's why your classmate has two daddies" is "Here's how to put on a condom and some pictures of STDs". The former is the actual kind of lesson taught, and it's completely appropriate.

      2) But recognizing the types of decisions that normal people might make is.

      3) "Child abuse" is driving up suicide rates by enforcing gender conformity. You auth-rights are always complaining about that statistic, but want to do everything we know drives it instead of what's known to reduce it to population background. "Child abuse" is hurting your child by enforcing your ideological beliefs over their well being. Stop projecting, the child abusers are the supporters of this law.

      4) Teaching about the human behavior is absolutely part of public education.

      5) Companies do what's profitable. Disney is taking this stance because they think appealing to the majority will be more profitable than supporting the bigotry of the minority. (Yes, I'm aware you can ask deceptively worded questions and leave out the context and legal implications of the language and delude yourself into thinking people support the law, nobody is impressed)

      People don't move to a place stomping all over liberty because they want liberty. The people that are moving to Florida are moving to the blue parts, and if you really cared about Republicans being in charge, you wouldn't move to a state never more than a couple points away from Democrats being back in the governor's mansion.

      1. I'd like to see proof that (1) talking to kids freely about sexual topics, and (2) forbidding the kids from letting the parents know that these things are being talked about, is preventing suicides.

        This is a claim that's been bandied about for a while, but it always seems to be made without any serious studies to back it up.

  33. Oh and Disney..I want to be addressed as a Gentleman. Why drop the desired salutation because 1% of folks dont' like it..just say "Ladies and Gentleman and all others"? Libs always scream for equality but really want domination and servitude

    1. Based on your posts, why should Disney address you as something you most assuredly are not?

      1. Well, they address men as "women" when they clearly are not....

      2. I'm of the view you should be addressed how you want to be addressed. That is just respect. I'm a Sir not an It. If you percieve yourself as an "It"..I will be than happy to call you that.

  34. The left has done a good job to make themselves so hated that when the time comes to cancel the entire lot of them, no one is going to really care....

    1. They'll be lucky if being canceled is the only thing that happens to them.

      1. All-talk right-wing losers are among my favorite culture war casualties.

        Lots of big talk from misfits who will spend their entire life obsequiously complying with the rules established by their liberal-libertarian betters.

        At least replacement will end your torment, clingers.

        1. Ever considered you might be the one who is going to be "replaced"....?

        2. Fun fact: there's really not all that much of a difference between the "Alt Right" and the "Ctrl Left". The Alt "Right" are merely disappointed that the Ctrl Left isn't explicit in their racism.

  35. Haven't followed this case since decided but "Lundblad v. Celeste" https://casetext.com/case/lundblad-v-celeste held that "We conclude that no legal principles developed under the Equal Protection Clause "clearly establish" that state officials may not award public contracts on the basis of partisan politics or party affiliation. In Rutan v. Republican Party of Illinois, ___ U.S. ___, 110 S.Ct. 2729, 111 L.Ed.2d 52 (1990), Branti v. Finkel, 445 U.S. 507, 100 S.Ct. 1287, 63 L.Ed.2d 574 (1980), and Elrod v. Burns, 427 U.S. 347, 96 S.Ct. 2673, 49 L.Ed.2d 547 (1976), the Supreme Court has developed principles under the First Amendment prohibiting the hiring and firing of employees on a partisan political basis, but the Court has not developed such principles under the Equal Protection Clause, nor has it extended these First Amendment principles to the area of public contracts. It has not decided a case holding that the award of public contracts on the basis of political patronage violates either equal protection or the First Amendment."

    I think this case is substantially relevant but not directly pertinent.

    1. Read Board of Comm'rs v. Umbehr (1996) and it appears to pretty much overturn Lundblad v Celeste. This was a case I was familiar with because of the nasty politics behind the termination of the bidder.

  36. Big corporations are greedy and bad, except this one. They should pay their fair share of taxes, except this one. They should be punished for speech we disagree with, but not ones we agree with.

    /sigh

    On a side note, I still think counting corporations as people when it comes to politics was a bad decision.

    1. Whether a corporation should be considered a person or not is actually irrelevant, ultimately: Citizen's United was correctly decided, because Congress should have no power to take away the freedom of anyone, and that includes everyone who organizes a corporation, or donates to a corporation, to say what they want, particularly in an election season.

      If Citizen's United stood, the logic could be used to forbid the New York Times from publishing op-eds endorsing or attacking candidates 90 days before an election. Citizen's United overturned a very bad law.

  37. Just some random comments from a life long Florida resident.

    I can still remember when Disney first came to Florida and the objections from long time residents. One of the biggest groups objection were environmentalists who were concerned about the damage caused by building in what was basically a swamp and wooded low lands.

    Not much question as time passed and the population in the area exploded the runoff into the Kissimmee basin (along with other sources as well) turned Lake Okeechobee into the largest retention pond in the state with the releases from Lake O causing massive damage on both coasts.

    Of course there were other groups objecting for other reasons including what might be called the plastic Disney image conflicting with the natural beauty of Florida.

    In any case there has been a long running objection to Disney. On the other hand it is amusing to me to see anyone try and advance the fantasy that Disney would move. Of course there are logistic reasons that make any move unrealistic. Maybe more to the point is what I will call the general tax advantage in Florida. Both pro and college sports teams have noted that players in Florida don't pay any state income tax (something I know from personal experience is not the case in Georgia and not just a hit in the pocket book but a waste of time as well). Even without the Disney district the company would have massive tax advantages compared to any other state except Texas.

    Bottom line is even without the special district Disney is in Florida for the long run. I also view this as a win for DeSantis. Not only does he get street cred but I have little doubt if the special districts go away the elimination of duplicate services (fire, police, general government services) could result in savings. Note I said could and that would depend on efficient local government; not something you should bet the farm on.

    1. ragebot — You think this nation isn't familiar with special tax breaks to persuade a company to relocate? There are people who practice that kind of deal as middlemen, as a business. They pre-negotiate the tax break, and then go fishing to persuade some out-of-state company to take it.

      Can you think of a juicier target for that kind of thing than Disney World? The guy who could set that one up would get a billion dollar payday. Capitalism is famous for its adaptability. Be careful, not complacent. When Minderbinder bombed his own base, it looked over the top, like a flaw in the book. Now it just looks over the top.

      1. Stephen,

        I know you keep banging this drum ... but no. Seriously, no. You truly have no idea of the physical infrastructure involved. To build just a single theme park now, like the upcoming Epic Universe expansion in Orlando, costs $1 billion. And that's not including the numerous hotels, resorts, golf course, sports complexes, and so on that make up the resort area (monorails and gondolas and so much more).

        And then there's the infrastructure. Orlando's airport sucks, but it can handle the vast traffic that Disney generates- as do the roads around it. That's a lot of work over time.

        So what you're asking for is billions in public spending, and tens of billions of spending by Disney, AND giving up on all the capital investment there.

        There is no case to be made.

        1. And Disney would also get...at best, the same deal they have after the bill passes in FL. It's not like they'll be given the control and power they used to have elsewhere.

          1. Yes. They got this deal in Florida at a time when air conditioning was just becoming prevalent. Because of that, Florida (along with Phoenix and other places in the sunbelt) was basically unpopulated. There is no longer a 40 square mile plot of land anywhere that would appeal to Disney that a state would have the incentive to give them a deal like they had in Orlando.

            1. As the well respected real estate ditty goes 'location, location, location'. Not trying to dis Disney but Florida has multiple other tourist attractions and natural beauty that simply does not exist in many other places. The entire East Coast of Florida borders the Gulf Stream which provides some of the best fishing in the world. The Florida Keys attractions speak for themselves. The Florida West Coast and Emerald Coast also draw huge numbers of visitors.

              As you rightly point out when Disney first started it was basically in a rural area with cheap land and lax government regulations; again something that is hard to find combined with the attractions I mentioned in the first paragraph. As for Southeast Georgia I spent several years consulting there and as I mentioned the income tax issue was a real PITA; but anyone who thinks DeSantis is a hard core conservative has never been to Southeast Georgia. They still remember Sherman's march to the sea and hate all Yankees due to it.

              It is silly to think Disney will move from Florida and even sillier to think they could find a better deal if they did.

              1. Why should Disney move? DeSantis won by a hair. Not the fake kind of hair right-wing politicians sport . . . just a regular old hair. If Disney decided its wants to be rid of DeSantis, it likely has the resources to arrange that.

                1. Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Counties should all have their votes thrown out.

                2. I know you are convinced that because DeSantis won by a hair, he's on the border of losing next time. In order for that to happen, though, you'll have to also account for whether what DeSantis -- and the Republican legislature, too, because he's certainly not doing this alone -- is doing what Floridians want him to do.

                  If, in the whole, he is, he's going to run by much larger than a hair next time -- particularly if the Democrats try to run another coke-snorting loser to replace him.

              2. Ragebot, as far as I know, the best Gulf Coast beaches anywhere are on St. George Island, FL. Ever been there? Spectacular white sugar beaches by day, an astronomical dark-sky paradise by night. About 150 miles closer to Valdosta, GA than to Orlando.

                Also, Gulf Stream fishing in Florida is a pitiful remnant of what it once was. The whole Atlantic Coast of Florida looks like a dump to me. I lived in Pompano Beach in the 1950s, but not for that long. My parents got alarmed about the schools, and moved back north.

                By the way, have you got any first-hand experience with Valdosta? I don't think Sherman figured there. No doubt it's right wing. But if you know anything about it, I would be interested to hear.

                1. The schools in Pompano are bad because of the 85 IQ black population that infests it and Deerfield.

                2. "Ragebot, as far as I know, the best Gulf Coast beaches anywhere are on St. George Island, FL. Ever been there? Spectacular white sugar beaches by day, an astronomical dark-sky paradise by night. About 150 miles closer to Valdosta, GA than to Orlando."

                  I got my degrees at FSU in Tallahassee and still own a condo there and can't remember all the times I have been to St. George, Niceville, Destin, Fort Walton, and multiple other beach towns. Back when Mike Gebhardt was just a kid before he started his string of competing in five consecutive Summer Olympics I often competed against him on the Emarald Coast beaches.

                  "Also, Gulf Stream fishing in Florida is a pitiful remnant of what it once was. The whole Atlantic Coast of Florida looks like a dump to me. I lived in Pompano Beach in the 1950s, but not for that long. My parents got alarmed about the schools, and moved back north."

                  After my Dad graduated from med school in 1954 he returned to his home town of Miami where his parents (and my Mom's parents) lived and I graduated from Coral Gables high school which at the time (1960s) was always in the top ten best high schools in America. I do agree there were bad schools in Florida at the time but the same can be said for bad schools "back north". As for fishing I can still remember my Dad taking me out on his boat and fishing around bait balls bigger than a football field. Of course fishing in South Florida paled compared to the trips we took driving to Key West and getting on the ferry to Havana, that was the best fishing I have ever seen.

                  "By the way, have you got any first-hand experience with Valdosta? I don't think Sherman figured there. No doubt it's right wing. But if you know anything about it, I would be interested to hear."

                  I spent several years working in Southeast Georgia. I was sorta based in Baxley but covered 16 counties and reported to the DCA in Atlanta, as did all the other RDCs (an RDC in Georgia is similar to an MPO) in the state so I knew folks in the RDC that covered Valdosta. As an aside Georgia has more counties than any state East of the Mississippi so RDCs generally were for several counties. Not trying to dis Valdosta as I have been there for a conference but the bottom line is it is a small town on I75 that has a small airport that in no way could handle a Disney level of traffic.

                  1. Ragebot, thanks for that. It's welcome to get some personal insight.

                    Checking some other stuff, there may be negatives to Valdosta which would disqualify it. But did you notice I suggested a high-speed rail link to ATL?

                3. As someone who has recently become of the light pollution of the populated areas of Utah, and greatly appreciate the dark skies in the less populated areas, I cannot help but wonder: don't you know how silly it is to suggest that "dark skies" is a good feature for a place like Disneyland? I guarantee you that a place like Disneyland is going to ruin that advantage -- if not the park itself, then certainly the 80,000 employees living nearby to support it will.

        2. I know you keep banging this drum ... but no. Seriously, no.

          Loki, while I am trying to fish me up some plump culture warriors to put in my creel, you don't need to rise to every cast.

          But I can't help noticing your persistence may point in another direction. You aren't defending client interests in Orlando, are you? Any clients which might have an interest in keeping Disney World where it is? Seems unlikely—but what the hell, due diligence in blog commentary.

          1. I would never comment on anything that I have an active (or passive, or any) professional interest in.

            I do have an abiding fascination with Disney that stretches back to my childhood, and a fair amount of knowledge about the corporation because of my interests. That said, if you've ever been there (and I have) you realize how silly your plan is. This isn't like moving a corporate headquarters.

            We all want life to be a morality play; it would be great if Disney could "punish" Florida for this. But that's not how life works.

        3. So what you're asking for is billions in public spending, and tens of billions of spending by Disney, AND giving up on all the capital investment there.

          Loki, if you think American business managers hesitate to walk away from sunk capital, I have a whole rust belt to show you.

          I don't think the argument is ever, "How much did we invest already?" I think the argument has always been, "Which future investment will pay off better?"

          That, plus one other argument, which no one talks about much. Modern corporate managers are really, really keen to be able to manage without hindrance from others. That seems to matter more than anything else. To get free of having to take account of the union/skilled-labor factor, American managers destroyed a huge part of the nation's manufacturing sector, at the cost of abandoning untold value in existing investments. Nobody expected they would do that, until they did.

          1. Given that DisneyLand wasn't closed after being shut down for over a year, Disney has already shown they won't throw away sunk capital.

          2. It's one thing to move a factory -- particularly if it's cheaper to build a new factory, than it is to upgrade an old one, in a place where the local labor is cheaper -- it's an entirely different thing when it comes to moving a small city -- and considering that Disneyland employs 80,000 people, I think it's fair to call it a small city.

  38. The Constitution is not a suicide pact. Conservatives are tired of their people "playing nice" while they get steamrolled.

    The left is unhappy that the right is finally using the left's dirty tactics against them.

    1. Better Americans don't care what conservatives -- a tired and obsolete collection of downscale, half-educated, backwater misfits -- want.

      The tide of the culture war is not doing to change. Conservatives lose in America -- especially in the modern, accomplished, educated, reasoning, worthwhile communities -- because they have lousy, ugly ideas.

      1. Conservatives pay all of your bills. Do you think you tech wizzes, finance masters of the universe, and your homosexual groomers are paying the bills or growing our food?

      2. Ha ha ha...been to LA lately? San Fran/Bay Area? Chicago?

        Cultural Marxism is on the run...along with keynsian economics and pedophilia. All on the run....liberty is on the rise and the death of the woke state created in the 1960's by boshies is around the corner. Sound money, free markets, limited govt, peace

    2. The Constitution is not a suicide pact. Conservatives are tired of their people "playing nice" while they get steamrolled.

      When were conservatives "playing nice"? And given how most conservatives in the U.S. (particularly the social conservatives) are Christian, I'm waiting someone to tell me what chapter and verse quoted Jesus as saying, "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em." Or, "Winning isn't everything, it is the only thing." Or, "If you're not cheating, you're not trying."

      If all you have to do is convince yourself that the other side is cheating in order for you to support your side cheating, then what is the point of having ethics in the first place?

      1. Where have you been for the past 40 years? Every time Republicans had power, they didn't do anything with it. Abortion is still legal for now. They let their own judges implement gay "marriage." The borders are still wide open, and every year, another million worthless low IQ peasants stream into America.

        1. Interesting and accurate point. GOP'ers didn't address what conservatives wanted..sound money (end the Fed), limited govt (shut down all federal agencies created after 1960 or better yet 1932), free markets, and peace. Abortion is a State right unless you pass a Constitutional Amendment.

        2. Where have you been for the past 40 years? Every time Republicans had power, they didn't do anything with it.

          Bullshit. You are the one that seems to have lived under a rock. Or, more likely, you just don't think that the expressions of pure power that Republicans have taken in the last 40 years aren't enough.

          Just a few highlights:

          Wisconsin GOP, led by eventual Presidential candidate Scott Walker, completely neuters collective bargaining rights for public employee unions (leaving police and firefighter unions out of the 'reforms', naturally).

          Senate GOP refuses to even meet with a Supreme Court nominee of a Democratic Party President, let alone hold hearings or a vote, 8 months before the election, and then votes to confirm a Republican President's nominee 8 days before the 2020 election after almost exactly one month since she was announced as the nominee. (Two months would have been considered a fast confirmation process prior to that. 2-3 months from the announcement of a nomination to confirmation vote seems to be the range for almost all of the other justices currently on the court or recently replaced.)

          And let's look at how "their own judges" have performed for the Party in recent years.

          Citizen's United - The 5 Republican appointed Justices gave Republicans a long-sought victory in striking down limits on campaign spending by outside groups. The ruling went well beyond what Citizen's United had been seeking as a remedy, to the point that SCOTUS ordered more arguments on new questions once it was clear that the opinion being written by Kennedy was going to draw virtually unprecedented criticism for going beyond the questions before them from dissenting justices.

          Shelby County - Chief Justice John Roberts finally got to fulfill step one of a long-time dream of gutting the Voting Rights Act. It essentially nullified Section 5 (pre-clearance) by arguing that they hadn't updated in too long which states and local governments were subject to having their voting law changes reviewed by the DoJ prior to being enacted. These were all jurisdictions that had demonstrated with no doubt in the past that they had deliberately suppressed the voting rights and voting power of minorities. RBG took Roberts to task with the analogy that he was throwing away his umbrella, not because it had stopped raining, but because the rain wasn't making him wet. Not to mention that if Congress had a problem with the existing formula, it had decided not to act on it each of the several times it had reauthorized the VRA. Scalia had been the most honest about this. He had complained that congressmen that may have wanted to do away with pre-clearance or even just remove some jurisdictions with racist histories from it, would be afraid of being accused of wanting to suppress the vote. Yeah, Tony, it sucks when legislators have to actually convince voters that they are acting in their interests rather than trying to manipulate elections to gain more power, doesn't it? I guess if it is too controversial for Congress re-write the law the way that conservative judges think it should be written, then SCOTUS needed to do it.

          And, of course, we can't forget Bush v. Gore. That ruling, rightly or wrongly, will always be considered highly partisan, as the crucial 5 votes to end the recount and stick with the results certified by Florida Sec. of State Kathrine Harris (R) - that Bush won - came from the GOP appointed Justices. (2 of the liberal justices agreed with the majority on the Equal Protection arguments, but not the remedy to stop the recount and be done with it.

          And on abortion, Republicans certainly are making up for lost time now, aren't they? With a 6 vote majority on SCOTUS, red states are falling over each other to push the most restrictive abortion bans that they can.

          Not that they sat on their hands for the last couple of decades, though. Ever sense Planned Parenthood v Casey states pushed the boundaries of what would constitute an "undue burden" on the right to an abortion, to the point that some red states were down to a single clinic still able to operate. With 5 conservatives on the Court, and Kennedy (who had saved Roe by weakening it in Casey) being one of those, they let most of those TRAP laws stand (Targeted Restrictions on Abortion Providers), only occasionally striking them down when they went too far for Kennedy's liking.

          And gay marriage? There wouldn't have been anything for SCOTUS to strike down if Republicans in so many states hadn't exerted their power to pass laws and get constitutional amendments on state ballots to ban it in the first place.

          You also just have a really comical view of the role of judges. As I alluded to with the quotation marks above, that you view some judges as belonging to Republicans ("their own judges") naturally flies in the face of how it the judiciary is supposed to be independent of the political branches and not be partisan. Just because human nature prevents this ideal from being true, or the reality that politicians have to decide whom to nominate in the first place, doesn't make it less important to strive to live up to it, nor does it make it acceptable to just believe that judges should be partisan.

          This is exactly my whole point. It isn't about being ethical or moral to you, it is about whether your side wins, and whether you get what you want, isn't it?

      2. Appealing to religion npw?
        I heard a rumor thst Mohammed Atta was motivated by religion

        1. Appealing to religion npw[sic]?

          Perhaps after nearly five decades of the Republican Party practically merging with the Christian right in this country, it seems completely fair to me to wonder where that supposed Christian moral superiority goes when it comes time to debate political and legal ethics.

    3. Holy hell I don't know how people this delusional even manage to get online. Conservatives playing nice? Getting steam rolled? Jfc, you're a Grade A lunatic.

  39. Doing the right thing for the wrong reason is still doing the right thing.

    1. Pure consequentialism is not how we roll in this country.

      And 'this fascist act ends okay, so why worry?' is not a direction in which I wish to go.

  40. This is the scene Bill Murray for which Bill Murray was born:

    'So, I want to make sure I have this straight. You're saying this fight is an entire band of paranoid, desperate, norms-disdaining, gay-hating clingers, convinced they are fighting a holy crusade to save civilization itself from a marauding wave of depravity and godlessness . . . against a single, small, two-dimensional mouse wearing schoolboy shorts, a silly-grinning rodent with literally no balls? . . .

    OK. Gimme a fiver on the mouse.'

    1. So you're saying it's ok to teach kindergarteners about sexual topics, and furthermore that the teachers can tell them not to tell their parents?

      Ok, groomer.

  41. Responding to the issues Prof. Volokh actually raises:
    Whether you do or don't like the "don't say gay" law, or agree or disagree with Disney's comment on the law and it's commitment to repealing it, this is what happened:
    1.The Florida legislature passed, and the governor signed, a law.
    2. Disney spoke out against the law and vowed to work to repeal it.
    3. Because the Florida legislature and the governor didn't like what Disney said or planned to do, the legislature took action that adversely affected Disney. (Note that both the governor and the legislature freely admit they did this in retaliation for Disney's position.)

    Do you really think this case should turn on the minutia of whether or not Disney is sort of like a unit of government? It looks to me like a pretty clear example of exactly the sort of thing the First Amendment is designed to protect us all from: retaliation by the government for speech that the government disagrees with. The First Amendment also protects the right to petition the government for redress of grievances, which certainly includes the right to seek repeal of a law.

    1. The argument would be that as a quasi-governmental unit, under the creation and control of the State of Florida, it does not have the same First Amendment rights that a fully private company does.

      Does a county or municipality have First Amendment rights? Can the state legislature restrict its expression of its opinions? I believe the answers are, respectively, no and yes.

      I am not convinced this is a sound argument, but there is something to be argued there.

      1. The argument Bellamy is making is that the elimination of the special district violates the First Amendment because it was done in retaliation for statements made by Disney and Disney's CEO. Under this argument, the First Amendment rights being violated are those of Disney and Disney's CEO. For the purposes of this argument it doesn't matter whether the special district has First Amendment rights because there is no contention that those rights, if they exist, have been violated.

  42. I feel,the analogy to the NRA is incorrect. Government has long adopted standards from the private world as public standards…construction codes, medical standards, legal standards. That is far from Disney being permitted to act as a public institution when in fact it is a for profit private business.

  43. Some have pointed out that kicking Disney out of the local government business will increase the tax burden on the two counties in which it operates. There's more.

    If the governmental assets owned by Disney under the 50-year-old authorization of the Florida legislature is confiscated under authority of this week's decree, it would seem that this is a taking under the 5th Amendment. Florida will be liable to pay for all real estate improvements and equipment purchased for the state-authorized governmental purposes, at least to the extent that Disney contributed to these beyond taxes that they and all other residents of the counties were obligated to pay.

    1. A law passed by both chambers of the legislature and signed by the Governor is not a 'decree'.

      Also, Disney doesn't own the special district, so how could it be taking from Disney?

      1. According to Merriam-Webster, a decree is "an order usually having the force of law."

        Not all assets used for the benefit of a special district are owned by the special district. Real or personal property owned by Disney are its property, even if used for the district.

        1. Who is taking any real property that belonged to Disney, an entity that is separate from the Reedy Creek Improvement District?

          The supposed "government" is carefully managed in such a way that the only legal representatives in the government are senior Disney employees - a literal oligarchy - but technically, perhaps to avoid taxes, Disney doesn't own large segments of the infrastructure. Although it seems like they did formally "merge" with the utility company a few years back. Previously, it was an "independent private company that contracted to Disney".

          So if the existing counties attempt to take ownership of the utilities, then you'd be correct that there was a taking going on.

          But the Reedy Creek Improvement District ceasing to exist does not make Disney the owner of anything it had - that (probably) goes to the State or existing county governments... just as if any other town or county had dissolved. (Florida law may differ).

          1. It is also possible that some of the real estate owned by Disney was used for district roadways or other improvements without transferring title to the district. If, for example, a road serving the district is built on Disney land without dedicating the land to public use, it would seem Disney could close the road and use the property for its own development--unless the district were to take it by eminent domain.

            1. Well, yes. That's true anywhere, though.
              Locally to me, a housing development was built between two major roads, and it included a new privately owned road between the two. Of course, this new road immediately got heavy traffic, and when it lightened up enough, cars greatly exceeding the speed limit - 50+ mph in a 25 zone.
              The housing development tried to put in speed bumps. County sued them for sabotaging and deliberately cars / creating a hazard. So out came the speed bumps. At this point, the owners simply stopped maintaining the road. Unsurprisingly, it went to crap in just a few years - huge potholes, missing signs, etc. The county sued again to make the owners maintain the road to the county's satisfaction.

              At this point, the owners finally found a judge that said "No" and forced the county to buy the roadway. Which is what should have happened in the first place.

              In Reedy Creek, it looks like most of the big roads and the ones to lead to the Disney complexes are public - owned by Reedy Creek. The smaller roads, and the ones within the complexes are Disney owned. So I suspect it'd work exactly as you describe: The two new owners would take over the public roads, and if they decided they needed access on the private ones, they'd need to buy them.
              Of course, I do not know why Disney would want to block people from coming to their theme park, but hey...

              1. "Of course, I do not know why Disney would want to block people from coming to their theme park...."

                Many of these issues will depend on how Disney chooses to respond to Governor DeSantis' spiteful actions. Disney could cause a lot of problems if they choose to respond in kind.

  44. This is an opinion article, but it has an awful lot of research put into it, including interviews with lawyers and officials in the area. It's well worth reading. Perhaps even Prof. Volokh would benefit from it.

  45. I asked this in another thread and got no answer. Has anyone ever tried to apply Marsh v. Alabama, 326 U.S. 501 (1946) to the Disney area?

    1. How would it apply?

      Disney is many things, but a company town it is not. No one owes their soul to the company store.

      1. Try reading the case first. "Owing your soul" was not the reasoning of the case. The company owned the streets and the business district, and it functioned as a public sphere.

        I have not researched the prior law, but as it has been described, Disney was allowed to run the whole area as a virtual county. That sounds like it is akin to the company town in Marsh.

        Marsh was a 1946 case, while the deal with Disney only came about in the 1960s, so I imagine they tried structuring it to avoid the holding of that case. I am curious if it were ever litigated.

        1. Try reading the case first
          I took Constitutional Law, but thanks for the condescension. You should look into the works of Tennessee Ernie Ford.

          as it has been described, Disney was allowed to run the whole area as a virtual county. That sounds like it is akin to the company town in Marsh.
          The county is not privately owned. But more important to the case you bring up, if Disney starts banning speech in that county, they'd probably get in trouble.

          1. In other words, you had something to contribute all along, but instead of contributing it first, you condescendingly sneered at the person for being "condescending", and then provided that contribution as if the person who had a sincere question should have known about it all along.

            Not all of us who visit this blog are constitutional law experts, heck, a good portion of us aren't even lawyers, and we appreciate seeing the give-and-take of different laws we aren't aware of, so it's rather sad that it takes someone to suggest to you "read case law first" in order for you to actually bring up relevant case law that could have been brought up in the first place.

        2. I don't see how Marsh v. Alabama would apply either. The case dealt with First Amendment rights on the public streets of a private town. I don't see anything related in the Florida Disney law.

          1. Later courts have interpreted that case to mean that a company town acts under color of state law, and can be sued for violating civil rights under 42 USC 1983. So a company town is for many purposes treated as a governmental authority, subject to Constitutional restrictions. I am curious if anyone ever sued Disney under such a theory.

            As I said above, it is clear to me that a municpality or county is a creature of state law and does not enjoy First Amendment rights against the State. One might argue that a company town is in the same boat, although that would be a stretch, IMO. I thought that is where Prof. Volokh is going.

            1. Sued them for what?

              I believe all Disney does is zoning and provide municipal services like police and fire.

              1. You have never heard of the police being sued for violating civil rights under Section 1983? Do a Westlaw or Lexis search and see how many hits you get on that. It's in the 10,000's.

                Not hard to imagine some "Disney" police stopping or detaining someone, and then their claiming violation of 4th Amendment rights.

                1. That's a fair point, I wasn't thinking it through.

                  Though if that's your concern, you have Westlaw and Lexis more than I do, I suspect.

                  1. Section 1983 cases against police are commonplace. As are qualified immunity motions.

                    I have no clue if anyone ever tried that with Disney police. And even if it worked, it is still a giant step to say that somehow diminishes Disney's First Amendment rights.

                    1. Once you specified the specific application you had in mind, it becomes pretty marginal.

                      But your original formulation of Disney as owning a company town, and the original facts in Marsh, made it look like you were aiming for something a lot more broad.

  46. Prof. Volokh, I read through this article last night and had a thought this morning.

    What is the actual legal relationship between the Reedy Creek Improvement District and the Walt Disney Company? Is there a legal connection, or are they completely separate entities with Disney having de facto but not actual de jure control?

    Can the Walt Disney Company actually show it was harmed by a decision of the State of Florida to reorganize local government that it is legally unconnected to?

    States have broad discretion to organize and reorganize local government.

    Just look at the Elkhorn, Nebraska case where the City of Elkhorn expressed interest in annexing some land to get its population above 10,000 people, to prevent annexation by Omaha. Omaha responded by by using special powers it had been granted by the Nebraska legislature to swiftly annex Elkhorn and wipeout it’s elected government. Elkhorn lost all its challenges in court and is now just a neighborhood in Omaha.

    1. The government of the Reedy Creek Improvement District are all senior Disney employees, as there is a land-ownership requirement to be vote or on the board and only select senior Disney managers are allowed to own land. Specific pieces of undeveloped land, at that - the only technically privately owned "non-Disney" land inside the government's borders.

      All the other people that live there are disenfranchised.

      1. Why do people keep commenting who know nothing? Or even bother googling it.

        (Two seconds to google) There are 53 people that live in the District. But they are all Disney employees who are chosen by Disney ... and get votes. So no one is "disenfranchised."

        1. The Board of Supervisors are elected by landowners, not by residents.
          According to the minutes of the 2021 annual Landowners Meeting where 3 board members were re-elected, 10 landowners voted and 12 others were unrepresented. Other than the board members themselves all the landowners in the list are companies or government entities.

        2. Loki, mirror.

          I did look it up, and I get differing numbers - depending on the sources I get between hundreds and thousands of people that live in the district. Because I didn't just look at one single source, I kept reading.

          You see, only the owners/resident of five specific pieces of land are allowed to vote or otherwise participate in government. And those five pieces of land are always owned by Disney senior managers and their families that live there.

          If you saw "53" somewhere, that was probably the number of residents that were related to the Disney-selected landowners.

          I mean, just go to Wikipedia for a shallow summary that confirms what I've said. Even the simplest search should have hit that page, so surely you read it... right? Right?

  47. I did a thread on Kensington Volunteer Fire Dep't v. Montgomery, which I think is the closest case.

    https://twitter.com/dilanesper/status/1517674679942623233

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