"Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again..."

Location: Tampa, FL, United States

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Should Florida Break Up?

As Hurricane Dennis bears down on the Florida panhandle it may be time for Floridians to consider dividing the state up. Living in Tampa, I paid close attention to their recent (2004) onslaughts by Charlie, Jeanne, Francis, Ivan and now watch the unfolding of Dennis with one eye on the Weather Channel. As I write the eye of Dennis is west of Naples and it's looking good for Tampa. Pensacola however...

Hurricanes that hit Florida tend to hit the panhandle, the keys, or the East Coast cities, exceptions duly noted for the record. My hurricane deductible is $3095. But I bet if Orlando and Tampa got together with some of the interior cities of Florida and seceded from the state, that my deductible would go down. Naturally, the deductible of people living in Miami and Pensacola and other coastal cities would rise considerably. The only concern would be a diversion of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan to the I-4 corridor.

In the end we would have a 51st state but everyone would benefit from the new market realities. Owners of property in prime hurricane target cities would tend to be wealthier people. Us poor folk in the interior of the state (yes, Tampa is "interior;" Pinellas County though is not), which is now a new state, would have lower deductibles. With such a move both Florida and Florida II (until renamed) would be less vulnerable in an economical and emotional sense. That great sucking sound created by FEMA dollars flowing into Tallhassee would diminish.

Whatever happens, Floridians everywhere thank the rest of the United States citizentry for sending lots of their money down here to help us rebuild over and over. I don't see the wisdom in the rest of you not kicking us out of the union, so as long as you don't, please keep sending the money.


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