Friday, September 30, 2011

Casey Anthony Doubles Over Responding To News Report

Jailed Casey Hyperventilates Upon Seeing News Report About Found Dead Child

A video released today showing scenes from the Orange county, Florida jail shows a jailed Casey Anthony reacting to December 2008 news that a child's body had been found in the woods near her family's Orlando home.

Defense attorney Jose Baez attempted to keep the video under court seal arguing that the video was privileged under HIPPA medical privacy rules. The court this week disagreed, and released the jail video to be viewed as any normal public document can be.

In the video, a restrained Anthony is seen in a chair in a waiting room at the Orange county jail on December 8, 2008, when news is broadcast on a television in the room, about the discovery of unidentified child's bones in the woods near the Anthony home.

She is seem to be looking up at the TV briefly then doubling over and hyperventilating but not looking back at the television again. The jail video had been sealed from public view by the judge and not allowed in the trial.

Speculation is that since she admitted at trial that she knew daughter Caylee Anthony was dead, having died in a pool accident, that the video shows evidence that she knew where the 2-year old was buried, and when the news account was broadcast, she was shocked that a body had been found.

That she didn't look back at the TV so see more of what the news was, indicates she already knew the body found in the woods was that of Caylee's.

Other's speculate that she was distraught because she didn't know where Caylee was buried.

Florida Consumer Confidence Rising?

According to the University of Florida's latest poll of consumers, Florida's consumer confidence index rose this month to 64, up three points from a revised mark of 61 in August, which was only two points higher than the record low of 59 set in June 2008.

Of the five components used by University of Florida researchers to measure confidence, four edged upward. Expectations, for instance, that personal finances would rise in the coming year went up five points to 78. In addition, consumer anticipation that the U.S. economy will improve in the coming year rose by one point to 52.

There was also a four-point increase to 66 in the overall expectation that the country will see economic gains during the next five years. Meanwhile, confidence that now is a good time to purchase retail big ticket items, such as laptops and cars, rose six points to 74.

"Yes" Votes For Florida's X-Factor Teen Jazzlyne

Cape Coral Student Gets Biggest Break On X-Factor Show

Jazzlyne Little, 16-year old teen from Cape Coral, Florida's Ida Baker High School got the biggest break of her young singing career Thursday night on Fox's X-Factor nationwide talent show featuring Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul.

Little, singing Mary J. Blige's hit "I'm Goin' Down" wowed all four celebrity judges after a 10-minute spot on the televised show Thursday. "My whole world's upside down," as the lyrics say, may well apply to the talented young singer Jazz, as she likes to be known.

The final contestant shown on the popular television show's auditions Thursday night, Jazzlyne, a high school sophomore, sang before the four judges and an audience of 4,000 in Miami, and was the featured final performer shown on the show during the last ten minutes of the show Thursday.

The show edited her nervous backstage wait, as she told herself "Relax, Relax, Relax" while talking on camera in preparation for her appearance before Cowell and Abdul. Mouthing "wow" as she walked on the huge elaborate stage before the Miami audience, she told Simon Cowell she was "extremely nervous." "Everybody's looking at me right now," she explained to Cowell.

Little told the panel she only had 500 views on her Youtube page. She said, "People don't like to watch my videos, I don't know..."

Starting into her selected song, the crowd roared and then rose to their feet as she sang the words "I'm goin' down, I'm goin' down" while Simon Cowell smiled broadly. Paula hugged judge Nicole Scherzinger in a kumbaya moment. Music industry executive L.A. Reed exclaimed "Sixteen, man, Sixteen!"

(Above: Litttle's Audition Video courtesy Youtube)

Her next step will be the X-Factor "bootcamp" where she will compete against scores of other singers sent through by the celebrity judge panel.

Update: Jazzlyn successfully went through the X-Factor Bookcamp and on to the final 32, spending her days in France at judge Simon Cowell's estate with seven other girl singers. Cowell, however on the October 18th show airing, cut her from the competition, Jazzlyn therefore not making it to the live show with the final 16 singers returning back to the U.S.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Environment Work Progresses At Lake Okeechobee

Water Management Workers Complete Projects Around Lake O

CLEWISTON, FL. -- By taking advantage of low water levels that extended into the summer wet season, the South Florida Water Management District was able to complete several successful environmental enhancement projects, such as planting native trees and bulrush and stocking apple snail eggs.


Much of the work was completed in the spring and early summer when water levels were extremely low around Lake Okeechobee and the Caloosahatchee Estuary.  After the initial work, the projects continue to be maintained as the plantings now are taking root and flourishing.


Among the Lake area projects completed or underway:

·         Trees were planted around Lake Okeechobee, including 2,000 pond apples on the Rita Island berm, 660 cypress trees along the rim canal and 70 new cypress trees at Jaycee Park in Okeechobee. 

·         Bulrush planting was started on approximately 12 acres at the Harney Pond Canal marsh and the Clewiston Cut marsh to protect areas where muck was previously removed.

·         Apple snail eggs were produced at a newly constructed hatchery at Lemkin Creek in Okeechobee County as part of a joint effort with Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute. The eggs were subsequently transplanted to Lake Okeechobee as the preferred food source for the endangered snail kite.

·         Vallisneria, a type of aquatic plant, was installed in cages along the Caloosahatchee Estuary, to re-establish the tape grass, which is critical to the food web in the sensitive estuary environment.

·         Surveying was conducted in Lake Okeechobee's littoral zone and marsh to identify locations for future muck removal or tilling.


Lake Okeechobee is at 11.13 feet NGVD, which remains more than 3.5 feet below average for this time of year when wet season rains would typically have filled the lake. 


This is the third time in five years that the District has taken advantage of drought conditions in Lake Okeechobee to perform environmental improvements. In 2007 and 2008, extremely low water levels allowed access to remove decayed vegetation and hurricane-stirred organic matter along the shoreline.  The work helped to improve water clarity, reduce phosphorus levels and foster new growth of aquatic vegetation when lake levels increased.

Cox A.C & Electric Special For Online Readers

Residential Air Conditioning Check Up Special

LABELLE, FL. -- Fall is here now! How's your electrical and air conditioning system working?

Cox Air Conditioning and Electric, serving the area since 1960, is offering a special air conditioner check-up for LaBelle and western Hendry and Glades county residents for $59.95, with $10 off thru October, only if you mention you read this online here.

Includes checking freon level check, clean drain line and coils, electrical, thermostat, ductwork and filters check, and more.

If you have any maintenance needs, AC and electrical contractor Cox Air Conditioning and Electric, Inc. is here in Hendry and Glades county for you. Call (863) 675-0022.

Located at 99 North Industrial Loop in LaBelle with a complete inventory and parts counter, James A. Steedley, Karen, and crew are ready for your needs in refrigeration, ice machines, sheet metal, and anything electrical.

Since 1960, serving the area's commercial and residential community in air conditioning, electrical repairs, maintenance, and installation.

Licensed and insured. ER 0001347 CAC042632

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Hendry-Glades Obituaries

Beatryce T. Waters, age 78, of LaBelle passed away Wednesday, September 21, 2011 in Lehigh Acres, FL. Beatryce was born March 3, 1933 in Trenton, S.C. to the late Irene Aterway and Samuel Wise. Her name at birth was Fannie Lue. She was adopted at the age of 3 months to Mary Anne Johnson and Press Tillman.

At the age of 3, her father bought a mule from Mrs. Beatrice Anderson, and she wanted her name to be Beatryce too. So it was. She received her elementary education at Douglas Jr. High School in Trenton and then went to Bettis Academy and Jr. College in Trenton. She was brought up and baptized in Science Hill Baptist Church at the age of 12, in Edgefield County, S.C. She held the position of Secretary of the Usher Board, until moving to New York at the age of 18.

From a child Beatryce always wanted to be a nurse. Well she made it, graduated from LPN School in 1965. Went on to school and graduated from RN School in 1969 with an A.A.S. Went on to get her B.S. in Nursing in 1972 and her M.S., C.M.H. in 1973. She worked in different churches as she moved around, finally settling in Paradise Temple of Truth, founded by her son, the late Rev. Larry R. Tillman.

She was married to the late Joseph Waters on August 3, 1972. They came to Florida in 1995, where her husband preceded her in death in 1996. She was a member of the Grace Baptist Church, Key Women of America Inc since 1973 and a member of the Kiwanis since 1998.

She is survived by her one daughter: Sweet J. Love and husband of Brooklyn, NY; one son: Arkeen Salah Dunlap of Copiaque, NY; one daughter-in-law: Hawwah Salah Dunlap aka Lucille Townsend; 20 grandchildren; 21 great grandchildren; five godchildren: Phyllis Elmore, Cassandra Parker, Efrain Martell Jr., Michael Owens (Fahiym) and Frederick Townsend (Tah-Ba) five sisters: Ruth Macklin and husband, Maggie Viola Hickerson and husband, Louise Williams, Earlene G. Foster and Lethella Smith, many nieces, nephews, cousins and a host of other relatives and friends.

The funeral service was held 6:00 pm on Saturday, September 24 at Grace Baptist Church, LaBelle, FL with Rev. Jeffrey Zimmerman and Pastor Benny McCloud officiating.

Arrangements by Akin-Davis Funeral Home - LaBelle

Palmetto Berries No Good For Prostate Trouble

Saw palmetto no benefit as prostate remedy

 IMAGE: Compared to a placebo, saw palmetto capsules, pictured above, do not alleviate urinary problems related to an enlarged prostate, even when men take up to three times the standard daily...

Click here for more information.

The fruit of the saw palmetto tree, harvested commonly in South Florida fields, does not relieve symptoms of an enlarged prostate, even when men take the herbal supplement in very high doses, a new study shows.

The research is published Sept. 28, 2011, in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Many older U.S. men take saw palmetto extract in an attempt to reduce bothersome symptoms of a swollen prostate, including frequent urination and a sense of urgency. Its use in Europe is even more widespread because doctors often recommend saw palmetto over more traditional drug treatments.

Results of the new study may settle an ongoing debate over the effectiveness of saw palmetto for a condition known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Earlier studies of the supplement have produced conflicting results, and none have evaluated the benefits of saw palmetto in high doses.

In the current study, however, men took up to three times the standard dose of saw palmetto.

"Now we know that even very high doses of saw palmetto make absolutely no difference," says co-author Gerald Andriole, MD, the Robert K. Royce Distinguished Professor and chief of urologic surgery at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. "Men should not spend their money on this herbal supplement as a way to reduce symptoms of enlarged prostate because it clearly does not work any better than a sugar pill."

The multi-center study, led by Michael Barry, MD, at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, involved more than 300 men ages 45 and older who had moderate symptoms suggestive of an enlarged prostate, such as frequent urination, difficulty emptying their bladders and a weak urine stream. The men were randomly selected to receive a daily dose of saw palmetto extract, beginning at 320 milligrams, or an identical-looking placebo pill with the same distinctive smell and taste.

After 24 weeks, the saw palmetto dosage was increased to 640 milligrams a day, and after another 24 weeks, to 960 milligrams a day – triple the standard dose. In all, men took saw palmetto or a placebo for nearly 17 months. Neither the physicians nor the patients knew who was taking what regimen until the end of the study.

The researchers found that among men who took saw palmetto, prostate problems improved slightly but not more than in men taking a placebo.

"We commonly see this in clinical trials," Andriole explains. "Patients often report an improvement in symptoms because they are taking something, even if it is a placebo. But in this study, there was no benefit to taking saw palmetto over the placebo."

The researchers found that saw palmetto had no greater effect than the placebo on BPH symptoms as well as other conditions related to an enlarged prostate such as waking at night to urinate, PSA level and bladder control.

About half of all men over age 50 have BPH, which becomes more common as men age. If urination becomes difficult or painful, Andriole advises men to visit their physician. Several approved medications, such as alpha-blockers and 5-alpha reductase inhibitors, are available to successfully treat the condition.

The research was funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH); the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases; the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine; and the NIH Office of Dietary Supplements. Saw palmetto fruit extract and matching placebo were donated by Rottapharm/Madaus, Cologne, Germany.

The study was conducted under an Investigational New Drug Application from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Barry MJ, Andriole GL, McVary, KT et al for the Complementary and Alternative Medicine for Urological Symptoms Study Group. Effect of increasing doses of saw palmetto extract on lower urinary tract symptoms. Journal of the American Medical Association. Sept. 28, 2011.

Source: Washington University School of Medicine

Note: In Southwest Florida "berry picking" and the selling of "bolitas" is big business. Mexican workers typically invade private properties, harvesting the berries without permission from property owners, selling the berries to wholesalers who take the harvest to processing plants, where the extract is eventually made into pills commonly sold by direct mail through television and radio ads.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Hendry Sheriff Whidden Arrests Trio For Burglary

Home Invasion / Robbery and Burglary Suspects Arrested

LABELLE, FL. -- Three teenagers were arrested by the Hendry County Sheriff's office in LaBelle on charges of invading the home of a 67-year old, and taking a big screen TV and cell phone and additionally a burglary at the Handy Food Store on County Road 78 north of LaBelle.

At approximately 4:45 am on September 20, Deputies were dispatched to the Handy Food Store, located at 200 Old C.R. 78 after receiving a call of suspicious persons.  The caller reported seeing three subjects wearing dark clothing coming from behind the Handy Store.  

When deputies first arrived they found that the glass door to the store had been broken and later found a pack of cold beer lying scattered along C.R. 78.

Later deputies responded to a home invasion at 692 Palm Avenue in LaBelle.  The first Deputy on scene, Deputy Clifton Green, observed one of the suspects running through the backyard and immediately gave chase along with Sheriff Steve Whidden.  

Sheriff Whidden apprehended the suspect who was later identified as 17 year old Francisco Javier Bustamante.  As backup units began to arrive on scene deputies set up a perimeter and with the assistance of road deputies, investigators, and Sheriff Steve Whidden.  

All three suspects were located and arrested.

The 67 year old victim was found lying on the floor by the front door of her residence.  She was suffering from a laceration to the forehead and to the stab wound to the forearm and was later transported for additional medical treatment.  

A second victim who also resides at the same residence was able to run for help requesting assistance from a neighbor. The victims reported to deputies that the suspects took a 46” television and a cell phone during the robbery.  Investigators were able to recover and return to the victims the television.

Investigators were able to determine that the same three individuals were responsible for both the burglary at the Handy Food Store as well as the home invasion.

Arrested were: 19 year old Jose Aguilar (photo above) charged with Burglary of an Unoccupied Dwelling, Petit Theft, and Aggravated Battery on a Person 65 years of age or Older, Kidnap – False Imprisonment, Larceny from a person 65 years of age of Older, Robbery – Home Invasion with a Weapon.  

He is currently being held at the Hendry County Sheriff’s Office without Bond.

Francisco Javier Bustamante, 17 years of age, charged with Burglary of an Unoccupied Dwelling, Petit Theft, and Aggravated Battery on a Person 65 years of age or Older, Kidnap – False Imprisonment, Larceny from a person 65 years of age of Older, Robbery – Home Invasion with a weapon.  In addition Bustamante was also charged with two additional outstanding warrants for Contempt of Court and Failure to Appear.  

Bustamante is currently being held at the Juvenile Detention Center. 

Sergio Gomez, 16 years of age, charged with Burglary of an Unoccupied Dwelling, Petit Theft, and Aggravated Battery on a Person 65 years of age or Older, Kidnap – False Imprisonment, Larceny from a person 65 years of age of Older, Robbery – Home Invasion with a Weapon.  Deputies also arrested Gomez on an out of county warrant for charges of Aggravated Battery with a Deadly weapon and Armed Burglary.  

Gomez is currently being held at the Juvenile Detention Center. 

Monday, September 26, 2011

USDA Sugar Programs Announced

U.S. Sugar Corp. Benefits Outlined In New Ag Regulations

USDA Announces 2011 Crop Sugar Loan Rates

WASHINGTON, Sept. 23, 2011—The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) today announced loan rates for 2011 crop sugar as required by the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (2008 Farm Bill). The 2011 crop national average loan rate, as specified in the 2008 Farm Bill, is 18.75 cents per pound for raw cane sugar and 24.09 cents per pound for refined beet sugar, which is an increase from last year. These national loan rates are adjusted regionally to reflect marketing cost differentials.

USDA's Sugar Loan Program provides price support loans to processors of sugar beets and domestically grown sugarcane. Price support loans are nonrecourse, meaning that producers have the option of delivering the pledged sugar collateral to the CCC as full payment for the loan at maturity. USDA's Farm Service Agency (FSA) administers nonrecourse loans for the 2008 through 2012 crops on behalf of the CCC. Sugar and in-process sugar loans are available beginning Oct. 1 of each fiscal year (FY) and mature at the earlier of (1) the end of the 9-month period beginning on the first day of the first month after the month in which the loan is made, or (2) the end of the FY in which the loan is made.

The refined beet sugar processing regions and applicable 2011-crop (FY 2012) loan rates in cents per pound of refined beet sugar are:

  • Michigan and Ohio – 25.72
  • Minnesota and the eastern half of North Dakota – 24.06
  • Northeastern quarter of Colorado, Nebraska and the southeastern quarter of Wyoming – 24.51
  • Montana, northwestern quarter of Wyoming and the western half of North Dakota – 24.08
  • Idaho, Oregon and Washington – 22.90
  • California – 24.76

All of the beet growing regions have higher loan rates for the 2011 crop than last year due to the mandated increase in the national beet sugar loan rate.

The 2011-crop (FY 2012) raw cane sugar loan rates in cents per pound of cane sugar, raw value are:

  • Florida – 18.16
  • Hawaii - 17.46 (18.75 cents per pound if stored on the mainland)
  • Louisiana - 19.52
  • Texas – 18.69

All of the cane sugar states have higher 2011 crop loan rates than last year except for Florida. The negative effect on Florida's loan rate was caused by the relative increase in its marketing costs compared to other cane-producing states, which more than offset the positive effect on Florida's loan rate caused by the increase in the national raw cane sugar loan rate.

Sugar beet and sugarcane processors who receive CCC loans in FY 2012 are required to make minimum grower payments for all sugar beets and sugarcane received from growers. Processors failing to meet the required minimum grower payment will be ineligible for loans. Sugar beet grower minimum payments are the amount specified in the grower/processor contract. Sugarcane processors must pay to their growers at least the payment levels listed below for average quality sugarcane. A grower's payment level can be adjusted according to the quality adjustment method in the grower/processor contract.

States and minimum payments are:

  • Florida – $27.59 per net ton
  • Hawaii – $26.42 per net ton
  • Louisiana – $27.48 per gross ton
  • Texas – $22.70 per gross ton

Calling All Artists - Moore Haven Show Coming

Free Show Coming To Glades County

Area artists and craftsmen are cordially invited to exhibit and sell their work at "Art in the Park" in Moore Haven, Saturday, January 28, 2012, 9AM to 4PM.  The purpose of the event, now in its 7th year, is to bring artists and the public together for their mutual benefit, in a pleasing setting where people can relax and linger.

The venue is the Glades County Public Library and adjacent park across the street from the Caloosahatchee River in Moore Haven's Historic District.  Painters, sculptors, potters, photographers, and handcrafters are encouraged to reserve their place now.   Non-juried.   

Free for artists and public.  Parking is free and convenient.   Exhibitors are responsible for their own setups.

The event is sponsored by the Glades County Public Library and its advisory board.  The library's address is 201 Riverside Drive.
INTERESTED?  For more information and to reserve a place, call Mary Booher, Director of Libraries:  863-946-0744

Gas Prices Falling In Florida

Hendry And Glades County Still Higher

Average retail gasoline prices in Florida have fallen 7.6 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.44/g yesterday. This compares with the national average that has fallen 7.1 cents per gallon in the last week to $3.53/g, according to gasoline price website

However, prices in Hendry and Glades county, as usual are still about 10 cents higher than Florida averages.

Including the change in gas prices in Florida during the past week, prices yesterday were 79.8 cents per gallon higher than the same day one year ago and are 10.3 cents per gallon lower than a month ago. The national average has decreased 7.2 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 82.9 cents per gallon higher than this day one year ago.

"Last week saw an impressive decline in crude oil and gasoline futures, and accordingly, motorists in most areas of the U.S. have seen retail gasoline prices decline. In some areas, price have outright plunged to under $3/gal," said Patrick DeHaan, Senior Petroleum Analyst. "While social networking sites are abuzz about the decline, be warned that the market does remain extremely sensitive to geopolitical issues and refinery maintenance season is right around the corner," DeHaan adds.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

LaBelle Volunteers Clean Up Nature Park

Thank You LaBelle Nature Park Volunteers

Eleven volunteers came to the LaBelle Nature Park along the banks of the scenic Caloosahatchee River in LaBelle on Saturday, September 24 armed with tools, a mower and supplies ready to help with trail maintenance and to clean park benches. 

In two hours the group successfully filled a trailer with debris removed from the trails, says Margaret England who helped organize the event. 

Thanks and appreciation are extended to Hendry/LaBelle Recreation, LaBelle Rotary ( Matthew Kinderman and John Capece), Intelligentsia International interns (Lutz Walter – Germany, Cedric Falcou – France,  Mickael Meignant – France and  Frezghi Zereselassie – Eritrea), CRCA "Riverwatch" (Marti Daltry and David Bogert), LaBelle Kiwanis ( Margaret England) and Hendry-Glades Audubon (Ann Stark and Meredith Marcum).  

Groups and individuals are invited join volunteers for next Trail Maintenance Days: Saturday Oct. 8, Nov. 19 and Dec.10 from 8:00-10:00 a.m. 

The ten acre park located at Fraser and Hardee Street in LaBelle is open to the public during daylight hours.  For information about volunteering at the Park or to schedule a guided walk call: Margaret England863-674-0695


Friday, September 23, 2011

Florida Panther Kittens Rescued

5-Month Old Panthers Captured In Collier County

Two panther kittens were rescued after their mother died in a remote rural area of Collier county, Florida

They may have lost their mother, but two 5-month-old Florida panther kittens have a good chance of survival, thanks to the efforts of staff from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, White Oak Conservation Center in North Florida and a volunteer with Big Cypress National Preserve.

The kittens were successfully captured this morning near the Corkscrew Regional Ecosystem Watershed area in Collier County.

FWC biologists began tracking the kittens' mother in February. She was captured, collared and released. In May, they examined and marked her three kittens on private land in Lee County.

On Sept. 14, a mortality signal from the mother's collar was detected during a routine telemetry flight. Her skeletal remains were located later that day. The cause of death is unknown.

Knowing orphaned kittens cannot survive long in the wild without their mother, biologists worked quickly to capture the kittens. Remote cameras and traps were set. Several days went by with no activity, and hope the kittens would be found alive was fading.

That is until Thursday. FWC biologists checked the cameras and found pictures of two panther kittens.

This morning, two kittens were trapped together in a single trap. It is believed that only two of the three kittens survived to this age. They were successfully rescued and transported via private plane to White Oak Conservation Center, where they will be raised and conditioned for a future return to the wild.

"Losing a mother panther in the prime of her life is tough," said Darrell Land, FWC biologist and panther team leader. "But we hope we can finish the job she started by raising her kittens so they can be returned to the wild. With only 100-160 adult panthers remaining in South Florida, every individual is important."

New Book Says Human Ego Cause Of Violence

Why Humans Worry Too Much - A Handbook For Life?

From a time more than 50,000 years ago, one in three of our ancestors most likely died at the hands of another, much like the conflict scene between two bands of proto-humans in 2001: A Space Odyssey. But today, human aggression has greatly diminished, at least statistically.

Killing today though, is different. Now the news reports mass murders regularly, while humans killing one another is most likely a premeditated act. 

So say Peter Baumann and Michael W. Taft, co-authors of EGO: The Fall of the Twin Towers and the Rise of an Enlightened Humanity. The authors of the new book say motivations for killing come from mental concepts, and these mental ideas lead humans to plan combat against others. 

The 9/11 terrorist attackers were trained to kill for an idea, say Baumann and Taft. 

The authors' tale leads from prehistory and proto-human's evolution through the 9/11 attacks and how the speed of discovery and invention is increasing faster than our biology. Our brains are stuck in thinking much like our ancestors of thousands of years ago.

Science is pronounced by the authors as the savior for our slower evolving biology and the mistakes make by the ego, the ego attaching unreasonable fears to ideas in our minds.

How the invention of science reformed our thinking:

"Science refashioned how people decided something was not true: not based on our feelings and intuitions (which are subject to biases) or based on the proclamations of an authority (which can be wrong), but instead through reproducible experiment and debate."

Baumann says evolution has wired our brains to be riveted to bad news, bad outcomes, and worst cast scenarios. Known as negativity bias, humans err on the side of caution, a bias toward safety.

Taft explains how humans brains are wired to "better-safe-than-sorry worst-case scenarios" focusing on what can go wrong. We often feel more worried than warranted, he says and react to small concerns as though they were life threatening.

We tend to react with fear or violence when our beliefs are challenged. Strong emotions take over when we hear or read opinions not our own. Our brains are also triggered by noise, strangers, and large moving objects.

These emotional signals were fine when thousands of years ago we lived in small tribes, needed to be aware of dangerous animals, and a loud noise most likely meant danger. But, today noise, crowds, and difference of opinions, are not uncommon in daily modern life.

The authors say our brains are not built to deal with it all, our ancient emotional reactions tell us something is wrong, when in reality nothing is.

The ideas expressed by the authors are not easy to comprehend, most likely an example of the dissonance our ancient brain feels in reaction to new ideas.

As human evolution continues, the authors say, our brains may develop a stronger sense of conscious awareness, and we will no longer "take things personally" and move to what some call "enlightenment" or liberation from the ego, an enlightenment revolution.

The new viewpoint will reveal that political ideas and even religious beliefs are only supercharged emotional concepts, as the authors say, "evolutionary leftovers from the days when common interests meant survival in the wild."

The new awareness and non-attachment to judging will allow us to refrain from overreacting to viewpoints different or foreign to us. "We give up the illusion that we can manage conditions and will someday have everything under control."

The authors do not dismiss the value of the ego, the conceptual mind, as it allowed the creation of art, culture, science, and language. It is only warned that we should remain capable of seeing situations needing improvement and move without overreacting.

The new way of seeing means although we will still feel pain and suffering in the world, we refrain from becoming "rattled by even the most intense emotions." This way of looking, and acceptance relieves stress in our everyday world of coping with the volume of information we must mentally digest in continuous streams.

Ego, the book, based on new science of the brain, is not an easy read, but is recommended for the jolt it gives to our Stone Age Brain. It has made me pay attention a bit more often to the distractions of daily life and my reactions to stressful events. 

I would hope the authors continue writing about the practical ways to use the message found in the pages of Ego, and more on an "Enlightened Humanity."  A "Handbook for Life" might just be what our Stone Age Brains can use in the 21st century.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Southwest Florida Online Joins Facebook

Facebook Users - Where To Find Southwest Florida Online

LABELLE, FL. -- Many are Facebook users, conveniently keeping all their friends and favorites on one handy site.  Southwest Florida Online/Sunday Morning News now has a convenient Facebook page where readers may check in, "like", add stories, comments, and have a bit of fun. Live video will be available from time to time. (Click "Ustream Live" at the left side of the Facebook page.) Past recorded video is playing at this time including the LaBelle Swamp Cabbage Festival Parade.

Link: Southwest Florida Online On Facebook

7 Home Sales In LaBelle In 2 Weeks

Prices From $17,000 To $430,000 In LaBelle

LABELLE, FL. -- From September 6 to September 20, there were 7 homes sold in the LaBelle area for an average price of $127,000. The sales included:

1)$17,000 onClipper Ct
2)$122,000 onCounty Road 78
3)$430,000 onFort Denaud Rd
4)$32,000 onHarvard Cir
5)$159,000 onLive Oak Ln
6)$59,000 onRamrod Cir
7)$70,000 onWilson Rd

Storm Shuts Down Electric In Port LaBelle

LABELLE, FL. -- A passing thunderstorm Wednesday night caused havoc with the electric power in Port LaBelle, Florida.

The electric went off for residents in Port LaBelle starting about 6:45 and didn't come back on until two hours later. A power wire was down on Helms Road, causing the widespread outage.

Hendry county sheriff deputies took at least one call to assist a Port LaBelle residence having difficulty due to the electric outage.

Power was out at the LaBelle High School Thursday morning but restored about 7:30 a.m.

"Poker Stars" Gambling Site Defrauds Customers Say Feds

Player Deposits Used To Pay $440 Million To Board Members And Other Owners
The United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharran, announced this week the filing of a motion to amend the forfeiture and civil money laundering complaint originally filed in April 2011, in the matter of United States v. PokerStars, et. al.

The proposed Amended Complaint alleges that Full Tilt Poker and its Board of Directors, including Raymond Bitar, Howard Lederer, Christopher Ferguson and Rafael Furst, defrauded players by misrepresenting that their funds on deposit in online gambling accounts were safe, secure, and available for withdrawal at any time. 

In reality, Full Tilt Poker did not maintain funds sufficient to repay all players, and in addition, the company used player funds to pay board members and other owners more than $440 million since April 2007. 

On April 15, 2011, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York filed the original complaint against Full Tilt and two other Internet poker companies and unsealed a criminal Indictment charging eleven defendants, including Bitar, with bank fraud, illegal gambling
and money laundering offenses.

Prosecutors say Full Tilt was not a legitimate poker company, but a global Ponzi scheme. They say Full Tilt also cheated and abused its own players to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. Saying, Full Tilt insiders "lined their own pockets with funds picked from the
pockets of their most loyal customers while blithely lying to both players and the public alike about the safety and security of the money deposited with the company."

As alleged in the proposed Amended Complaint, on several occasions in 2008 and 2009 through emails to players and postings on online poker message boards, Full Tilt Poker and its representatives assured players that their money was segregated, safe, and secure. 

For example, in response to inquiries, Full Tilt Poker sent emails to players in May 2008 assuring them that their funds were secure. One of those emails read, in part:  "To protect both our players and business from financial problems, all player account funds are segregated and held separately from our operating accounts. Unlike some companies in our industry, we completely understand and accept that your account money belongs to you, not Full Tilt Poker."

Despite these repeated assurances to players, the company did not have enough funds to repay players. By March 31, 2011, Full Tilt
Poker owed approximately $390 million to players around the world, including approximately $150 million to United States players. 

However, the company had only approximately $60 million in its bank accounts.

Furthermore, as alleged in the proposed AmendedComplaint, the company used player funds to pay its Board of Directors and other owners. Between April 2007 and April 2011, Full Tilt Poker and its Board distributed approximately $443,860,529.89 to Board members and owners. Bitar received approximately $41 million, Lederer received approximately $42 million, and Furst received approximately $11.7 million.

Ferguson was allocated approximately $87,486,182.87 in distributions, and received at least $25 million, with the remaining balance characterized as "owed" to him. Much of the money that was distributed was transferred by the Board members and owners to accounts in Switzerland and other overseas locations.

In June 2011, after the ability to collect funds from U.S. online gamblers, Lederer reported to others at Full Tilt Poker that there was only approximately $6 million left on deposit, and therefore no realistic ability to repay its new depositors. Similarly, in an internal email dated June 12, 2011, Bitar worried about a "run on the bank" by Full Tilt Poker customers. 

In addition to the forfeiture and civil money laundering penalties sought in the original complaint, the proposed Amended Complaint seeks the forfeiture of the dividends received by Bitar, Lederer, Ferguson, and Furst, as well as money laundering penalties against these individuals in the same amount. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Florida's Lake Okeechobee Catches On Fire

120 Acres Grass Fire Expanding In Lake North Of Lakeport

LAKEPORT, FL. -- Fires are burning in Lake Okeechobee, the 2nd largest freshwater lake in the U.S. The wildfire is the result of low water levels and lightning starting fires on the wild grasses growing from the lake bottom. It is feared the fires may increase to 12,000 acres if not controlled soon.

The southern Florida lake is 730 square miles in size, and the "Bass Fishing Capital Of The World."

Late Tuesday night, the Florida Forest Service was notified about a smaller 10-acre wildfire inside the levee of Lake Okeechobee presumably started by lightning. 

"Due to dry conditions, the lake level is down and very receptive to burning", said Melissa Yunas, Wildfire Mitigation Specialist with the Florida Forest Service. 

State & County Firefighters are patrolling the lake to make sure that fire is contained within the lake bed. There is minimal threat to the communities that border Lake Okeechobee including Lakeport, Buckhead Ridge and the city of Okeechobee. 

"Right now, the dry marsh and grass islands within the lake are burning and causing a smoke nuisance", Yunas said.

Wednesday Morning, the Florida Forest Service reported that the wildfire within the lake has increased to 120 acres. 

"The potential growth of this wildfire is up to 12,000 acres. The wildfires are burning slowly and crews are having difficulties accessing the wildfires", Yunas said. The wildfire is burning slowly and crews are having difficulties accessing the wildfire", Yunas said. 

The main concern is smoke on Glades County Road 78. CR 78 is not shut down, but Florida Highway Patrol troopers posted smoke advisory signs Wednesday morning. 

Smoke may create conditions where visibility on roadways is seriously impaired especially in the evening and early morning. Under these conditions drivers need to turn on low-beam headlights, slow down and be prepared to leave the roadway if conditions continue to deteriorate

The fire is named the Indian Prairie Fire and first reported Tuesday at 6 p.m.  The fire is between Hunter Road which is to the northeast of the fire and the Indian Prairie Canal. The nearest intersection is Tomato Grade Road.

Historically, when conditions are at their driest, as they are currently, the lake catches on fire. The last time the lake caught on fire was in 2008. 

The Florida Forest Service has been anticipating this scenario but they were expecting this earlier in the year when conditions were at their driest. 

The lake dries on the Southwest side exposing dry grass bottom. The grass dries out and easily catches on fire. In early 2011, the Army Corps of Engineers established fire breaks around the perimeter of the lake to eliminate fire spread from the roads and levees to enter inside the lake.

225 Dogs Found At Clewiston Puppy Mill

Authorities Claim "Borderline" Hoarding/Puppy Mill Situation

CLEWISTON, FL. -- LaBelle Animal Control helped Tuesday to remove hundreds of dogs from a South Palm Street address in rural Hendry county.

Allen Pickles, LaBelle's animal control officer, says no charges are pending against the owner, while "no-kill" animal shelters in Broward, Palm Beach, Collier and Lee counties help take the majority of the dogs.

Complaints were coming in about Isabelle Ripoll Cruz who was taking in stray dogs and reportedly advertising as a breeder in Miami pet shops. Observers say some of the dogs were not in good shape when the owner offered to sell some of the dogs to prospective purchasers.

Animal welfare officials said no charges were to be made because the woman cooperated in relocating the animals from the rented 1.5 acre Montura Ranch Estates location at 545 S. Palm St. in rural central Hendry county, southwest of the city of Clewiston.

The owner was reportedly allowed to keep some of the older and sick dogs. The facility has been in business for over five years. Volunteers helped clean the pens and feed the dogs.

The situation at the site had been described as a "borderline" hoarding/puppy mill, with dogs reportedly sold to Miami area pet shops.

Update: Isabella and Jesus Cruz kept 12 of the dogs at their property. Clewiston Critter Care Animal Clinic, according to Allen Pickles, took 57 to their Clewiston facility and is helping the Cruz' nurse to health as needed the dogs at the Cruz' residence. The Cruz' had no business license and may be in violation of the law if pets were sold.

Suzanne M. Bonnell of the Clewiston Critter Care reports the dogs they accepted are well maintained, happy and very adoptable pets. All were microchipped, spayed or neutered and heartworm tested with negative results on Thursday, September 22 and they are available for adoption, she reports. 

Bonnell said, "We have a set fee for all dogs/puppies which is $300. This includes the pets first years vaccinations and worming, spay / neuter, flea/tick prevention, heartworm test, first month's heartworm prevention, nationally registered microchip, 30 to 45 days of health insurance, reduced fee's for adopted pets for boarding or our doggy daycare and heartworm prevention."

Bonnell reports three dogs have been adopted as of Friday, September 23. The Animal Care Society, Inc. (dba Clewiston Critter Care Animal Clinic) can be reached at (863) 983-9145.

(Video: courtesy WPTV)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Hendry-Glades Obituaries

Charlotte Riser Pflum, age 82, of Melbourne, Florida, died Tuesday, September 13, 2011, at the home of her youngest daughter, Andrea Pflum, in Clewiston. Charlotte was born August 4, 1929 in Dixon, Illinois. She married William F. Pflum on April 10, 1948 in Shelbyville, Indiana. He preceded her in death in 1982.

She moved to Clewiston in February of 1974. Charlotte worked as a dispatcher for the Clewiston Police Department for many years and then at City Hall in the Utilities Department until her retirement in 1992. After her retirement, she was active as a Pink Lady Volunteer at Hendry General Hospital.

She moved to Melbourne in 1999 and attended CrossRoads Community Church, where she was active in Women of CrossRoads and Crafters. She also enjoyed her membership in the Red Hat Society.

She is survived by three daughters: Paula Balestra (Ray) of Indian Harbour Beach, Anita Bischel (Harold-deceased) of LaBelle, and Andrea D. Pflum of Clewiston; two sons: William Keith Pflum (Cynthia) and Eric S. Pflum (Mary), both of Clewiston; three grandsons: William J. Bischel (Nancy), Jason S. Bischel, and Christopher N. Balestra, and one great grandson, Jacob W. Bischel; four sisters: Ruth Newcomb, Jean Swails, Jacqueline Bruner, Carol Osborne; and two brothers: Vern Riser and Donald Riser.

Her memorial service was held on Saturday, September 17, 2011, at the Clewiston Church of God, with Pastor Kurt Owen and Rev. Cliff Gobble officiating.

Jose Ramon Leyva, age 75, of Clewiston passed away Wednesday, September 14, 2011 at home in Clewiston. Jose was born April 2, 1936 in Cuba. He is the son of the late Jose and the late Petra Roche (Miliam) Leyva.

He is survived by his wife: Dorothy (Flowers) Leyva; one daughter: Julia Leyva; one son: Michael (Jacqueline) Leyva; two sisters: Alexia Alfonso and Maria Lois Luke; he also has one grandson: Joseph Leyva.

The graveside service was held 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, September 17 at Our Lady Queen Of Peace, 10941 Southern Blvd, Royal Palm Beach, FL with Chaplain Don Goodwin officiating. The funeral service was held 7:00 pm on Friday, September 16, 2011 at Akin-Davis Funeral Home, 438 E. Sugarland Hwy., Clewiston, FL.

Monday, September 19, 2011

U.S. Sugar's Judy Sanchez Appointed

Appointment By USDA For U.S. Sugar's Local PR Person

CLEWISTON, FL. -- U.S. Sugar Corporation in Clewiston, has announced that U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsak and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk have appointed Judy Clayton Sanchez, of U.S. Sugar, to the Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee for Trade in Sweeteners and Sweetener Products.

"Trade issues have an enormous impact on the sugar industry and it is vital that our industry have a strong voice in Washington, D.C. Judy Sanchez brings that voice and nearly 20 years of experience and expertise to the table," said Robert Coker, senior vice president, public affairs in a press announcement.

"With the 2012 Farm Bill discussions underway, Ms. Sanchez' appointment could not have come at a more opportune time," Coker said. "With the national economy in shambles, it is more important than ever that we not allow subsidized foreign sugar to replace efficient American sugar farmers and export more American jobs overseas."

U.S. Sugar Corp. is the recipient of virtual price guarantees by the United States government. The government places quotas on importing sugar from 41 countries around the world, allowing American sugar companies to price their products higher. World free-trade sugar prices are substantially below prices of U.S. produced sugar, but the quotas placed on importing that sugar guarantees U.S. Sugar and other American sugar companies can sell at about three times the world price.

"With U.S. agricultural exports reaching record highs as our farmers and ranchers bring the American brand to more of the world consumers, agricultural trade is demonstrating once again its vital role in the health of our nation's economy," said Vilsak. "By serving on these committees, they have the opportunity to provide their expertise and knowledge to deliberations that influence U.S. trade policy, ultimately helping to grow, innovate and out-compete the rest of the world."

Congress established the advisory committee system in 1974 to ensure a private-sector voice in establishing U.S. agricultural trade policy objectives to reflect U.S. commercial and economic interests. The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative jointly manage the committees.

Advisory committee members provide advice and information to the Secretary of Agriculture and the U.S. Trade Representative on negotiating objectives, positions and other matters related to the development, implementation and administration of U.S. agricultural trade policy. 

The ATACs offer technical advice and information on specific commodities. The appointment of Sanchez requires secret security clearance. Members of the committee will serve until June 9, 2015.

"This is both a great honor and opportunity for Ms. Sanchez and a great benefit for the sugar and sweetener industry," Coker said.

Sanchez is the senior director of corporate communications and public affairs and has worked in a public relations capacity for many years at U.S. Sugar Corp. for it's Clewiston office.

Gas Prices Down A Nickel

Hendry-Glades Still Higher Than Average

Average retail gasoline prices in Florida have fallen 5.4 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.52/g yesterday. This compares with the national average that has fallen 4.2 cents per gallon in the last week to $3.61/g, according to gasoline price website

Outlets in Hendry and Glades county, Florida still remain at prices higher than average, at $3.62 to $3.63 at nearly all stations, or ten cents higher than the Florida average.

Including the change in gas prices in Florida during the past week, prices yesterday were 84.5 cents per gallon higher than the same day one year ago and are 3.6 cents per gallon lower than a month ago. The national average has increased 2.4 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 88.0 cents per gallon higher than this day one year ago.

"It took the end of summer for a drop in retail gasoline prices, but I'm sure motorists won't complain that we're finally seeing some drops in prices," said Patrick DeHaan, Senior Petroleum Analyst. "We've seen wholesale prices continue to be somewhat volatile, but I believe as we enter October we'll see markets slowly quiet down with retail gasoline prices falling to $3.35-$3.55 on average by Thanksgiving, with the exception being typical hotspots on the West Coast," DeHaan adds.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Commissioner Meets Hendry County Community On Tax Issues

Citizens Confront County On 14% Property Tax Increase

LABELLE, FL. -- Hendry County, Florida Commissioner Tristan Chapman will meet at LaBelle City Hall Monday, September 19th at 7 p.m. with citizens for a discussion about publicity surrounding the millage rate for the present tax year, 

Mel Karau, of the West Hendry County Council has asked Chapman to meet and share his views and receive comments from the tax payers in West Hendry County and surrounding areas. 

The County Commissioners have tentatively set the millage rate of 7.2894 which reflects an increase of 13.71% over the 6.5 millage rate which has been in effect for the last 5 years. 

At the last BOCC meeting, Commissioner Chapman's motion to hold the maximum tax rate to 6.8294 mills (an increase of 5%), was rejected by the Hendry County Board of County Commissioners.

The 6.8294 millage rate is called the "roll back rate", which, when considering  this year's decrease in property valuations, amounts to no tax increase, and the county would receive the same amount in property taxes as the previous year. 

Traditionally, taxing authorities, the County Commission, School Board, and others like Hospital Authorities, Recreation Districts, and Water Management Districts often dismiss the "roll back rate" and try to raise more money each year instead of holding to a budget to keep the amount collected the same each year.

Commissioner Chapman's motion to cut costs enough to not raise taxes failed by a three to two vote. Only Commissioner Carson Turner also voted in favor of Mr. Chapman's motion. 

Karau says, "Now is the time to become involved and take a stand on establishing your position on the millage rate for the coming tax year---or forever hold your peace when you receive your tax bill with an increase of almost 14%."  Tax bills will arrive after the various taxing authorities in the county vote for millage rates.

Karau added, "Please consider bringing your TRIM notices to our meeting." 

Government MyPlate Has Shortcomings Says Harvard

Experts Find USDA Diet Recommendations Deficient

Harvard Health Publications, in conjunction with nutrition experts at Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH), have unveiled the Healthy Eating Plate, a visual guide that provides a blueprint for eating a healthy meal.

Like the U.S. government’s MyPlate, the Healthy Eating Plate is simple and easy to understand—and it addresses important deficiencies in the MyPlate icon.

“Unfortunately, like the earlier U.S. Department of Agriculture Pyramids, MyPlate mixes science with the influence of powerful agricultural interests, which is not the recipe for healthy eating,” said Walter Willett, Professor of Epidemiology and Nutrition and chair of the Department of Nutrition at HSPH.

“The Healthy Eating Plate is based on the best available scientific evidence and provides consumers with the information they need to make choices that can profoundly affect our health and well being.”

Comparing the Harvard Healthy Eating Plate to the USDA’s MyPlate shows the shortcomings in the government’s guide. MyPlate does not tell consumers that whole grains are better for health than refined grains; its protein section offers no indication that some high-protein foods—fish, poultry, beans, nuts—are healthier than red meats and processed meats; it is silent on beneficial fats; it does not distinguish between potatoes and other vegetables; it recommends dairy at every meal, even though there is little evidence that high dairy intake protects against osteoporosis but substantial evidence that high intake can be harmful; and it says nothing about sugary drinks.

Finally, the Healthy Eating Plate reminds people to stay active, an important factor in weight control, while MyPlate does not mention the importance of activity.

The Healthy Eating Plate is based on the latest and best scientific evidence which shows that a plant-based diet rich in vegetables, whole grains, healthy fats, and healthy proteins lowers the risk of weight gain and chronic disease.

Helping Americans get the best possible nutrition advice is of critical importance as the U.S. and the world faces a burgeoning obesity epidemic. Currently, two in three adults and one in three children are overweight or obese in the U.S.

“We want people to use this as a model for their own healthy plate or that of their children every time they sit down to a meal—either at home or at a restaurant,” said Eric Rimm, Associate Professor of Epidemiology and Nutrition at HSPH and a member of the 2010 U.S. Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee.

The sections of the Healthy Eating Plate include:
  • Vegetables: Eat an abundant variety, the more the better. Limited consumption of potatoes is recommended, however, as they are full of rapidly digested starch, which has the same roller-coaster effect on blood sugar as refined grains and sweets. In the short-term, these surges in blood sugar and insulin lead to hunger and overeating, and in the long term, to weight gain, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic disorders.
  • Fruits: Choose a rainbow of fruits every day.
  • Whole Grains: Choose whole grains, such as oatmeal, whole wheat bread, and brown rice. Refined grains, such as white bread and white rice, act like sugar in the body. Eating too many refined grains can raise the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
  • Healthy Proteins: Choose fish, poultry, beans, or nuts, which contain healthful nutrients. Limit red meat and avoid processed meats, since eating even small quantities of these on a regular basis raises the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, colon cancer, and weight gain.
  • Healthy Oils: Use olive, canola, and other plant oils in cooking, on salads, and at the table, since these healthy fats reduce harmful cholesterol and are good for the heart. Limit butter and avoid trans fat.
  • Water: Drink water, tea, or coffee (with little or no sugar). Limit milk and dairy (1-2 servings per day) and juice (1 small glass a day) and avoid sugary drinks.
Link: USDA MyPlate From June 2011 to compare with Harvard's MyPlate

Friday, September 16, 2011

Hendry County Government Office Relocating

Changes Coming To Hendry Offices

LABELLE, FL. -- The Hendry County Administrative Offices are relocating to 640 South Main Street, LaBelle, FL 33935. The phone numbers and e-mail addresses will remain the same. The following offices will be open for business Monday, September 26, 2011.

· Office of the County Administrator

· Office of Management & Budget

· Grants & Special Projects

· Planning & Zoning

· Human Resources

· Purchasing

The Veterans Service Office will relocate to 110 Broward Avenue, LaBelle, FL 33935 (formerly the Hendry County Economic Development Office)

The Office of the County Attorney will relocate to 110 Browad Avenue, LaBelle, FL 33935 (formerly the Hendry County Economic Development Office)

The SHIP Office (Housing) has been temporarily relocated to 385 E. Cowboy Way.

Should You Pay Your Bills? - Florida Attorney Says Maybe Not

New Book "Stop The Bleeding" Gives Credit Advice In Bad Economy

The economy is bad, and it might not improve for years, says author and Orlando area attorney Matt Englett. As a syndicated radio show host, Englett listens to sad stories every day from people in dire economic trouble, whether having lost jobs, or owning a house with a mortgage exceeding the market value. 

Englett endeavors to give advice to the unemployed, the underemployed and the struggling business owner in his new book "Stop The Bleeding," and daily on his radio show.

Englett says although we're nowhere near experiencing the same problems as during the Great Depression years, things are not good, and they won't be getting any better for a while. He advises taking a careful look at how the nation's and state laws can protect people experiencing deep financial troubles.

In his book he addresses a question many have never considered before, "When should I stop paying my bills?" Englett contends "There is a point when capital preservation needs to take precedence over good credit."

He says, "It's not a happy place, but it's out there." Sometime not paying your bills is the only way to stop the bleeding, he says.

Englett leads the reader through steps to get out of a bad financial situation, whether it means working with your creditors or using the litigation process to your advantage. He tells how ultimately you can get bill collectors off your back to get your life back together.

Englett's advice begins in chapter four titled "When Should I Stop Paying My Bills?" He says a good yardstick is to stop paying when you have been "dipping into savings and retirement accounts for three months or more and have nothing concrete in terms of a job or the prospects of an increase in income."

He strongly advocates preserving your capital and assets above paying creditors and asks readers to decide whether it's better to have a good credit score or keep your money.

He says most of the time, paying off creditors with savings is just putting off the inevitable, eventually you're going to run out of money and your credit will be ruined anyway, and you'll maybe be left destitute.

Englett warns though, that even though stopping payments might be advised, creditors will eventually come after you for their money. He says be ready to negotiate the amounts down to something affordable, likely settling on 30 to 50% or a 12 month payback plan. Extending payments over 12 months will usually mean paying off about 75% of the balance due.

If that doesn't work, be prepared for litigation, and hiring an attorney.

And if all negotiation fails, Englett gives advice on filing for bankruptcy. One type, Chapter 13 allows "stripping" away a second mortgage and could be useful in cases where two mortgages exceed the home value. And some judges will force mediation to adjust the amount owed to more affordable payment schedules.

Chapter 7 will discharge all debts owed and will only take a few months, compared to years in Chapter 13.

In 2010, 1.6 million people filed for bankruptcy, up 14% over the previous year, Englett says.

While Englett's explanation of how the country got into it's current financial situation is less than a sure bet (he contends the troubles began in 1995 when the U.S. and Canada signed the North American Free Trade Agreement allowing cheap Mexican goods in and exporting jobs to Mexico), the book is well written, and at 86 pages concise and to the point.

And if purchased through as a Kindle ebook, a bargain at $2.99. The paperback version is priced at $12.95. - Radio Show Web Page with links to previous live shows

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Glades County Remembers 9/11 At Football Half-Time Show

Moore Haven HighSchool's Terrier Field Scene Of  9/11 Show

MOORE HAVEN, FL. -- Glades County Public Safety in coordination with Glades County School and Glades County Sheriff's Office remembered those who lost their life September 11, 2001 and to the military men and women who have and are still serving our country today during the MHHS Varsity Football Game Halftime Show on Friday September 9, 2011 at Terrier Field.

Angela Snow Colegrove, Bob Jones, Beth Barfield, Duane Pottorff and Butch Jones coordinated the show to ensure a representative from each 1st responding agency was present. Representatives from Glades County EMS, Fire, Sheriff's Office and the American Legion Post 299 were present. 

The MHHS Varsity and Jr. Varsity cheerleaders & band members brought the American Flag on to Terrier Field as the fire engines and patrol cars were being staged. Beth Barfield and George Coates recapped the event of September 11, 2001. Carly Hessler played Taps and a moment of silence was observed for those who lost their life. 

Military personnel past and present were asked to stand to recognize their outstanding service and sacrifice to our country; the audience was asked to join in the Pledge of Allegiance.

Halftime programs were designed by Tosha Reiss. Angela Colegrove, Shorty & Mary Garcia helped with the inserts and the flags in the programs. Glades County & the City of Moore Haven employees showed their support by wearing 9-11 tribute shirts to work on September 9th and also to the game that night along with Fire and EMS personnel. 

The shirts were purchased by Glades County Public Safety and Glades County Sheriff's Office.

Glades County Public Safety would like to thank the following for their contribution or help:

Glades County BOCC: Russell Echols – Chairman, K.S. "Butch" Jones, Vice-Chair (US Army), Paul Beck (US Army), Bob Giesler (USANG), & Donna Storter-Long Glades County: Col. Wendell Taylor (USAF –Ret.)– County Manager, Bob Jones (US Army) – Public Safety Director, Angela Snow Colegrove – EM Director, LaTosha Reiss – Admin. Asst., Glades County Sheriff's Office: Sheriff Stuart Whiddon, Chief Duane Pottorff, Sgt. Donnie Watts, Sgt. Duane McQuaid, Deputy Richard Anderson and other personnel. 

Glades County School Board: Mike Pressley (USANG) – Chairman, Patricia Pearce – Vice Chairman, Janet Story, Jeri Wilson & Jenny Allen

Glades County School: Beth Barfield- Principal, Moore Haven Jr. Sr. High School, George Coates- Asst. Principal, Moore Haven Jr. Sr. High School, Bryan Browning-Music Director, Moore Haven Jr. Sr. High School & Whitney Savoie 

Glades County Schools Student Body: Varsity and Junior Varsity Cheerleaders and the MHJSHS Band & Carly Hessler – Taps Performance

Glades County EMS & Fire Department participants: Sharon Jones, Lt. Lisa Watson, Travis Sheltra, Jerry Watson, Scotty Heflin, David Heflin, Neal Chapman, Marie Chapman, Johnnie Wilkerson, Danny Beard, Scott Oberstine, John Biggs, Mary Lois Biggs, David Cline, Doug Manke, Jared Smith, Steve Anderson, Bubba Roberts, Jack & Jenny Bayless, Paul Grzenda, Christopher Crum, American Legion Post 299: K.S. "Butch" Jones, David Whidden, Paul Beck & Al Brown.

Photography: Lorie Ward and Laura Mathis