The Brutus Papers

Round I for the Eight Gutsy Kids

On June 1, 2020, Florida Circuit Court Judge Kevin Carrol “reluctantly” dismissed the complaint filed by the 8 gutsy kids more than two years ago. For background, check out my April 18, 2018 blog, Uprising on the Court House Steps. After a three-hour “Zoom” video-conference hearing, Judge Carroll said his decision was based on the […]


America the Beautiful is “America the Great”

America the Beautiful, the lyrics we have all grown to cherish, were not written as a song, but as a poem. In 1893 Katharine Lee Bates, a young English Literature teacher at Wellesley College in Massachusetts, came to the words on Pike’s Peak in Colorado. As she wrote: “One day some of the other teachers […]


When it Gets Ugly, Leadership Matters – the High Cost of Loyalty

To Ponder: Marcus Tullius Cicero (circa 50 B.C.): “Nothing is more noble; nothing is more venerable, than loyalty.” Machiavelli, The Prince (1532): “A prince ought always to be a great asker and a patient hearer of truth about those things of which he has inquired, and he should be angry if he finds that anyone […]


Doctor’s Advice: How to Handle Our Groceries Safely in Coronavirus Times


An Interlude – Broadway Coronavirus Medley!

It’s time for an interlude! Thank you Zach! Zach Timson: Since Broadway is closed down due to COVID-19, I’d figure I’d bring a little Broadway to you….about COVID-19, of course! Thank you for watching! Be sure to follow my other social media platforms! Instagram: @zachtimson Twitter: @zach_timson Facebook: Zach Timson


When It Gets Ugly: Leadership Matters – Lessons from 1980s

In Part I of this series, I pointed out: The lessons I learned [during the depression, followed by my study at the University of Wisconsin of FDR’s speeches] shaped my life, and were more than helpful during the financial crisis of the early 1980’s when I became President of a troubled bank. The 1980’s insights […]


When It Gets Ugly: Leadership Matters – Lessons from 1930s

Part I A few days ago I listened to an excellent talk on the economic expectations that are likely to arise from our nations Coronavirus experiences, put on by Raymond James Financial, the manager of our family investment funds. I noted, however, that although the talk took us back to the 2008 recession and a […]


Some Call Me Nature – Some Call Me Money

A couple of weeks ago, I was doing some research regarding Reynolds vs. Florida, the lawsuit brought by eight youngsters against the State of Florida asserting their inherent and constitutional right to a healthy environment, clean air and water. I was particularly disturbed by the State’s claim that the children had no such inherent right […]


The Good News: Trump’s Environmental Policies Reduce Pollution in Taiwan. The Bad News …?

Soon after Trump became President, he implemented his “America First Energy Plan.” The plan, silent on renewable energy, promotes fossil fuels and reduces energy regulation he views as stifling business. Trump’s theme: “America has been held back by burdensome regulations” on the energy industry. Trump’s October 23, 2019 Fact Sheet champions, “President Trump ended the […]


Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and a Present from Pete Polar Bear!

T’was the Night Before Christmas; Santa was not amused. His reindeers’ runway, once ice, was all puddles; it could no longer be used. The North Pole’s ice was melting – it could not be a worst plight. Santa’s workshop that topped it sank fast, then clear out of sight. Santa’s elves saw it coming, worked […]


As We Shape Our 2020 Resolutions: Let’s Resolve This “Does it Matter?” Question.

September 14, 2019 The video introducing this blog provides 2.5 minutes of highlights from the September University of South Florida’s “Open” program, Youth vs. the State of Florida: the Legal Right to a Safe Climate. I was pleased to be a panel participant. Delaney Reynolds, now a student at the University of Miami – but […]


Our Thanksgiving Legacies

As we savor Thanksgiving 2019 with family and friends, let us reflect on the legacy we will leave for future Thanksgivings. Happy Thanksgiving Joanie and Dick Jacobs


What Teacher’s Make . . . In a Job Most Americans Won’t Take!

Taylor Mali is a teacher. His 3-minute poem, What Do Teachers Make? – linked above – begins: “He says the problem with teachers is, What’s a kid going to learn from someone Who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?” I couldn’t help but think about Mali’s poem – and his […]


A Question About Glaciers for My Climate-Change-Denier Friends

A few days ago, a conservative friend sent me a “must read” letter from 500 European scientists and professionals to the UN claiming there is no climate emergency. And, then, a little later, I learned about Trump’s administration’s assertion [totally contrary to the Fourth Climate Assessment released by his administration in 2018] that “There’s No […]


Quit Obsessing About Climate Change? Does What You Do or Don’t Do Matter?

Glen Hendrix is a designer, writer, inventor, and entrepreneur. And he has a blog worth checking out. In his A Timeline for Climate Change Hendrix points out the difficulty we have recognizing the effects of climate change because we lack historical comparisons. A scientist commenting on Hendrix’s blog suggests: “It is because we are right […]


Too Damn Many Regulations?

“The only difference between death and taxes is that death doesn’t get worse every time Congress meets.” Will Rogers On September 13, 1986, the St. Peterburg Independent (our community’s now defunct evening newspaper) published my Op-Ed, “We Need More Lights Turned on in Lukla”. In March 1986, Joanie and I had been trekking in Nepal, […]


Lincoln’s “Apple of Gold,” Our Declaration of Independence

It’s sweltering hot in Philadelphia in late June 1776. That’s why he rented a second-floor apartment with five windows, giving him cross ventilation. He wanted the breeze to keep him cool; he had a lot of writing to do. There was no air conditioning. He wrote at night, after long hours spent with the special […]


12 Lucky Young Thais and a Few Thousand Unlucky “Illegals”!

On Saving the World On November 30, 2009, the New York Times published “Nicholas Kristof’s Advice for Saving the World.” The article starts with Kristof’s puzzlement at the “collective shrug” his column received when he wrote about the “slaughter of children and the burning of villages” in Darfur and the outpouring of sympathy he felt […]


America the Beautiful IS America the Great

America the Beautiful, the lyrics we have all grown to cherish, were not written as a song, but as a poem. In 1893 Katharine Lee Bates, a young English Literature teacher at Wellesley College in Massachusetts, came to the words on Pike’s Peak in Colorado. As she wrote: “One day some of the other teachers […]


For Our New Year’s Resolutions: The Touch of the Master’s Hand …

A few years ago, my good friend Barry presented me with a plaque, which quickly found a cherished place on a wall of my law office — a painting and a poem, signed “Author Unknown.” I later learned the poem was written and published anonymously by Myra Brooks Welch, as a gift for us all. […]


A year-end message we can’t ignore from a 15 year-old in Sweden

This four-minute talk from 15-year old, Greta Thunberg, is so powerful, I wanted to share it with you as we measure the contributions we made in 2018 and will make in 2019. I am working on a message or two to kick off the New Year, but this talk was too powerful and important not […]


T’was the Night Before Christmas – Pete Polar Bear Gives Santa a Helping Hand … and a Present for You!

T’was the Night Before Christmas; Santa was not amused. His reindeers’ runway, once ice, was all puddles; it could no longer be used. The North Pole was melting – it could not be a worst plight. Santa’s workshop that topped it sank fast, then clear out of sight. Santa’s elves saw it coming, worked night […]


Between Moffitt Visits: A Speech You Might Enjoy!

Update Our last blog, May 8, 2018, was about my fortunate experiences With the Medical Wizards at Moffitt. Fortunately, Moffitt’s cancer treatment seems to be working. End-of-September follow-up MRI’s of my brain show no cancer lesions or scars from the radiation; and follow-up CT scans indicate that the lesions in my lung are beginning to […]


21st Century Religious Ethics . . . Pondering the God of a Trillion Stars

Written in 2011: The recent turmoil in England, the riots and resulting damage, raise the challenge of a troubled society without spiritual anchors. Comments have been made that the rioters, mostly young, unemployed males are adrift without religion and, its moral guidance. Notre Dame sociologist Christian Smith expressed similar concern after his 2008 research project […]