Friday, December 14, 2007

Seminole Winds

It's a long way from chickee huts to 5 billion a year. As Cyndi Lauper used to scream, Money Changes Everything...indeed. No one knows this better than the Leaders of the Seminole Tribe of Florida who have spent millions from their casino income on themselves and favored relatives. In case you did not know there are approximately 3500 members of the tribe who receive 120,000 annually in mostly casino profits.

Yes, yes, I know you feel some Seminole blood bubbling through your veins. But it gets better. Should you be among the more select Tribal Council family members you would have been able to help spend more than 280 million (yes 280 million) on luxury homes & cars, basketball courts, plastic surgery & travel expenses. This doesn't quite jive with the Gaming Act which contends tribe profits must be used accordingly to support government services and the general welfare of the whole tribe. So it is really to no one's surprise that federal auditors are visiting the Seminoles this week, and it's not for love of alligator wrestling or to learn how to make homes out of palmetto and cypress.

No, those days are long gone for the original Florida natives whose Hard Rock International Hotel and restaurant chain purchase cost them a recent 1 billion. Just a few weeks ago the state of Florida came to an agreement with the Seminoles in a 25 year compact to allow Class III Las Vegas style slot machines, banked card gaming at Tribal facilities and on Tribal lands...that would be the 7 Tribe casinos throughout the state. See for yourself Tribe Rep Max Osceola Hr. beaming with our Governor Crist as he promises the revenue (95%) will be used for Florida education.

The Tribe should have taken their cue from OJ Simpson who is a whiz at keeping his dollars in off shore accounts....I'm surprised they didn't just load up the canoes and paddle deep into Big Cypress where the feds don't go. Maybe it's not to late to get out the old paddles (or customized Cigarettes). That or get ready to go back to the gator pens and intricate bead working.

And you were wondering why this is called HavanaBananaLand....

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