The Fifty States: Florida

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If you were a stripper you might consider moving to Florida since there are probably more strip clubs on a per capita basis in Florida than in most other states. And if you're going to take your clothes off in a club or somewhere else why not do it in a state where there isn't likely to be a draft (except during hurricane season)? Carl Hiassen records this tawdry and sometimes desperate demographic in Florida based novels like Strip Tease. But why would anyone who was not a stripper want to move to Florida? Warmth? It's a big price to pay for what you get. Yes Florida is where people go to retire (aka kick) and the ubiquitous condominiums some of which are named after suburbs of New York like Westchester sport a uniformity (characteristic of graveyards) that's reminiscent of the socialist realist architecture of the old U.S.S.R. Yes Florida is a totalitarian society, with the devotion to pleasure and leisure creating its own tyrannical regime or regimens. Imagine a life of being condemned to play golf all day and then spend your evening stuffing your face in one of the many all you can eat buffets or restaurants that advertise early bird senior specials from 4-6. Imagine spending a life drinking just a little too much everyday at lunch and then returning to the ersatz luxury of your bungalow/mausoleum. The other thing that can be said about Florida is that it's a cesspool that attracts bottom feeders, who dream of busty mermaids who will magically bankroll their subprime schemes. Back in the 60's there used to be a commercial for Eastern Airlines flights to Florida which concluded "come on down the weather's great." The weather may be great, but nothing else is, unless you want to spend your life in LaLa aka Disneyland--as a snowbird. Remember it was Florida that pushed George W. Bush into The White House.There is great anticipation about the Florida primaries. God help us, if they are predictive of the outcome of the presidential race.

{This was originally posted to The Screaming Pope, Francis Levy's blog of rants and reactions to contemporary politics, art and culture}