Puerto Rico Thread


Rick Wilson mentioned PR and Florida last night

1/ Let’s zoom from macro to micro. In Florida, Rick Baker (popular, moderate R who was GREAT with African Americans) lost tonight against a crappy Dem mayor…
Link Here

2/ …who has been a disaster. What changed? Baker couldn’t distance himself from Trump. He was a honorable, good guy stuck in a political trap.

3/ Trump even narrowly won Pinellas country. But it didn’t stick, or translate. It became a deadly cancer. Wrote about it here:
The Florida Race That Shows the Trap Trumps Set for Decent Republicans in 2018
Rick Baker is a good man trapped by a bad president, with his good works in the African-American community washed away by the tide of hatred Donald Trump refuses to truly denounce.

in Sept.
4/ Democrats are eager for the fray. Republicans are playing defense for ONE reason, and if they won’t see it, they’re going to get pummeled.

4/ The Florida gov candidates MIGHT want to take a note of tonight. Maybe. You know, call me crazy but y’all MIGHT have noticed Florida isn’t deep red, right?

5/ Did any of you notice 100,000 Puerto Ricans who hate Trump with the fire of a millions suns just moved here? Anyone?

6/ Do any of your genius strategists have a path to victory in FL if the results split out like VA did? (Spoiler: they don’t.)

7/ And don’t even get me started on the U.S. Senate contest.


Yeah, they’ve been full US citizens for 100 years.

It’s like any other US citizen if you move to a different state. If that’s your new home, register to vote, and bingo.


Puerto Ricans are Americans just like you. But if you or any other American live in Puerto Rico, then you cannot vote for President (though both major parties let you vote in their presidential primaries). And if you or any other American move to Florida, then you can vote in Florida elections.


And that lack of electoral representation means their vote for president is largely symbolic.

But if they live in Florida…


Yeah, I’m asking because you guys are smart and I’ve been having this discussion with coworkers. We’re all pretty convinced that Florida just flipped to Dem for a while, but I’m wondering if we missed anything.


Only that it’s Florida. Even if we added 100k solid Democratic voters, Trump still would have carried the state.

But most elections are closer than that there. Gore would’ve been President with those people and a future “Gore” likely will be because of this.


I doubt it will stop at 100k new residents though


Maybe not, but I’m betting most would go home once it’s rebuilt.



Yeah and there is still no power and water for many (most?) of PR right now, so I think a lot more are considering coming. And now they’re going to be bringing them here for shelters. I think it’s not a stretch to say they’re going to be motivated voters.

I do wonder how many will go home after the mess is resolved and how long it will take. I know the Trumpster fire said mission accomplished and all, so probably tomorrow.


Again, talking with a friend whose family is in PR, I don’t think too many are going to go back. Migration was already an issue prior to the hurricane. Look at Katrina, lots of those folks from New Orleans ended up settled in Houston. They will quickly begin to put down roots, find jobs, open businesses and establish communities.


Thought I’d share (with permission) an update from my friend Marisol’s dad on the island. Just to note, typed out on a phone in the few areas he gets signal, so pardon any typos, etc.

Puerto Rico recovery & inspiration - part 8

This may be the last narrative for now.

We all have a lot to do with the "Seeds of Hope " which you are all sending.

Thank you and please don’t stop. (Note from Marisol: they’re also looking for the little pods that you can start the seeds in, as my mother is running workshops with people who bring them back to plant in their own communities in egg cartons, paper cups, etc, whatever they can find. She’s also working on planter boxes that can be made with materials available.) Thousands of seeds will be given to families, schools and community groups to help them feed themselves.

PS we may combine the Roots & Shoots International Peace Day with “Seeds of Peace.”

Thanks for your patience with my rambling. I didn’t plan on doing this much writing, it just took on a life of its own and helped me with this insane destruction.

Puerto Rico
Hurricanes Irma and Maria

50 days today since Hurricane Maria and still no power, water, communications over most of the island. All kinds of equipment from private, military & government agencies doing their best to remove thousands of tons of downed trees, buildings, power lines and broken poles, landslide debris.

Huge mountains of the remains of everything piling up in open fields. Giant chippers the size of locomotives grinding everything into pieces.

We are seeing police cars from New Jersey, moble generators and emergency equipment vehicles from Florida and Mississippi and many other states. New York City cops directing traffic freeing up local police for law enforcement.
Yesterday our town officers showed up at the farm. They are going house to house to see how everyone is doing.

Our neighborhood group organized a community cleanup.

Following are my own “Reasons for Hope,” to borrow Jane Goodall’s phrase.

Ordinary and extraordinary Heroes.

In many of the isolated towns and small communities in the interior of Puerto Rico the roads, bridges, homes and businesses are destroyed

Volunteers, both from the states and all over the island, are inventing ways to get food, water and rebuilding materials to them. Some are building makeshift bridges and zip lines to get across swollen rivers. Off road quads and 4x4’s are the only way through the destruction.

Most of the “visiting important people” either went to urban areas or flew over the island in helicopters or planes.

You don’t experience hunger, fear and hopelessness from 2000 feet up.
You need to see, hear and experience what is happening to hundreds of thousands of people who have lost everything.

You also need to meet the individuals who, in spite of having lost everything, are working to help others and saying that they are going to do whatever they can with what they have.

Their imagination and inventiveness in overcoming both physical and mental obstacles is incredible. Many people said the coming holiday season was going to be a miserable, sad time on an island that revels in the spirit of Christmas.

Puerto Ricans answered that by starting to celebrate NOW.

The lights may be candles vs electric but the traditional music, dancing, giving and worship, if anything, may be more like the old Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rican sports and celebrity figures like the Baseball players in the World Series and Olympic champions are helping in many ways.

When interviewed they respond, not as "famous people " but as home town men and women who love their battered land.

The motto here is “Puerto Rico rises.” (PuertoRico se levanta!)

With outside help? Of course. But also by their own hands and hard work.

Finally, as time has passed the harsh, bare brown, shattered mountains are slowly being covered by the soft green of new leaves and plants. The little Puerto Rican tree frogs (coquis) are singing and there’s a annoyed little crab sitting under the generator telling me to get lost!

Love & gracias to you all.

Rick & Nelly

If anyone is interested in donating seeds or planters to the Seeds of Hope project Rick is organizing in partnership with the Roots & Shoots initiative of the Jane Goodall institute, feel free to PM me for the PO Box (omitted from this post for privacy’s sake).


Can’t imagine what they’re going through, and yet they have hope. Humbling.
Thanks for sharing Armando.



What percentage of people there still don’t have power?

What percentage don’t have clean water?


I just saw 18% with power.

Good enough, I guess. We can’t afford more, we have to focus on added trillions to the debt.


I was also told by a colleague that Puetro Rico apparently supplies a lot of saline, and there is a shortage which is causing a problem in the health system. A number of systems are diluting where they can, and of course they have to be careful about it due to the drugs involved and health of the patient.

Lot of reasons to continue to care.