This just in — Grand Jury Votes to Indict Donald Trump in New York in the New York Times. No paywall.
Can we consider the possibility that Ron DeSantis is not that smart? It appears he’s been pantsed by The Mouse. Michael Hiltzik writes at the Los Angeles Times:
If so, you don’t know your Disney.
DeSantis handpicked a board of cronies to take over control of Reedy Creek Improvement District — the quasi-governmental entity that Disney and Florida established more than 55 years ago to control development and management of the land on which Walt Disney World, EPCOT and the company’s related enterprises are located.
DeSantis’ board has now revealed that, while they were snoozing, Disney executed an agreement with their predecessors that strips the new board of all its powers except the authority to “maintain the roads and maintain basic infrastructure,” according to one of the new board members.
How did the Mouse do tihs?
Days before the takeover, Disney reached a development agreement with the old Reedy Creek board while it was still in power. The agreement prohibits the newly constituted district from using the name “Disney” or its trademarks — specifically including Mickey Mouse — in any way without the company’s written permission. The agreement also leaves the new board without the ability to make design changes to buildings or constructing new ones without Disney’s permission.
The new board members knew nothing about the agreement until they took office.
You may remember that as one of Ron DeSantis’s culture war gambits he punished Disney’s position on gay rights in the state by abolishing the special government jurisdiction which essentially allowed Disney to run Disney World as its own town or governmental district. That was the Reedy Creek Improvement District. DeSantis had the state legislature replace Reedy Creek with the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District. Now the political appointees DeSantis put on the Oversight District board to lord it over Disney are crying foul, saying Disney pulled a fast one on them and essentially cut them out of any effective power for decades into the future.
On the last meeting of the Reedy Creek Improvement District the then-board approved a series of agreements and restrictive covenants (you can see them here) which, according to the Oversight Board folks, locks them out of any effective power for the better part of a century.
DeSantis’s Oversight Board, you might remember, was made up of “Republican and conservative stooges, including a founder of the right-wing censorship-happy organization Moms for Liberty, who happens to be an architect of the “Don’t Say Gay” law and the wife of the chairman of the Florida Republican Party,” Hiltzik writes. No doubt they had a plan to cleanse Disney World of any trace of Woke. As far as I know none of them have any experience, or interest, in road and infrastructure maintenance.
In other news — If you’ve been putting off any cancer or other screening procedures your doctor thinks you should have, you might want to run out and get them done now. This just happened.
A federal judge in Texas on Thursday blocked Obamacare’s mandate that health insurance plans cover preventive care, including screenings for certain cancers and pre-exposure prophylaxis against HIV (PrEP), at no cost to patients.
U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor in Fort Worth, Texas, previously found that the PrEP mandate violated a federal religious freedom law and that other no-cost preventive care mandates were based on recommendations by an illegally appointed task force.
The judge has now blocked the federal government from enforcing the mandates, a victory for conservative businesses and individuals that sued to challenge them in 2020. The ruling does not apply to preventive services that were recommended before Obamacare was enacted in 2010, such as breast cancer screening. …
…The legal challenge was brought by eight individuals and two businesses, all from Texas. They argued that the free PrEP requirement requires business owners and consumers to pay for services that “encourage homosexual behavior, prostitution, sexual promiscuity and intravenous drug use” despite their religious beliefs.
They also said that the advisory body that recommends what preventive care should be covered without cost, the Preventive Services Task Force, is illegal because its members are not directly appointed by the president, which they argue is required by the U.S. Constitution.
What the bleep? Does this mean that any sort of preventative cancer screening that wasn’t already recommended before 2010, when the ACA went into effect, will no longer be covered? I’m not sure which ones those are. What about changes in recommendations, like starting colon cancer screening at age 45 instead of 50, which is a new thing?