Email insights: Sugarcane farmers blast Everglades Foundation for ‘fake economics’

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Florida Sugarcane Farmers are the latest group to give its take on the hottest buzzword in American politics – “fake news.”

In this case, however, the group – which represents the $3.2 billion-a-year industry and employs more than 12,500 people – is blasting the Everglades Foundation for using “fake economics” and “fake science” to bolster Senate President Joe Negron’s plan to purchase up to 153,000 acres of what they call “job-sustaining farmland.”

Florida Sugarcane Farmers

A new email from Ardis Hammock, the owner and operator of Moore Haven’s Frierson Farms, says that it’s only fitting that a group “funded almost entirely by out-of-state billionaire special interests” will turn to an outside economist to defend the Everglades Foundation and its “dishonest” affiliates.

Hammock says “fake science” and” fake economics” are being used to make a case that most reputable scientists and economists cannot support.

“Despite the best attempts by environmental activists to use scare tactics that could harm Florida’s economy,” Hammock notes, “2016 was a record year for tourism in Florida, where the state saw a 5.9 percent increase over 2015.”

Florida’s real estate market is doing better, too.

Hammock also cites a report by Florida Realtors saying “the state’s housing markets clearly got healthier in 2016 due to a major decline in the number of distressed properties for sale.”

With that, a “small reservoir” south of Lake Okeechobee simply will not have any real impact on the very real harm experienced on coastal estuaries.

To suggest otherwise, Hammond says, is “blatantly dishonest.”

“It’s disappointing, but not surprising, that the Everglades Foundation would go to these lengths to push misinformation to sell this economically disastrous plan,” Hammock concludes, adding that Senate Bill 10 is a “job killer that spends too much, relies on fraudulent science, and gets very little in return.”

Fake news, fake science, fake economists – be prepared to see a lot more of these labels as the 2017 Legislative Session begins in earnest.

Peter Schorsch

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including Florida Politics and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Schorsch is also the publisher of INFLUENCE Magazine. For several years, Peter's blog was ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.


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