September 16, 2010; Source: Broward Palm Beach Times | A former writer for the Sun-Sentinel, John deGroot, tried to out-Alinsky Alinsky in his protest against the North Broward Hospital District’s plan to convert to nonprofit status. DeGroot showed up at the District Commission meeting and told the seven commissioners that they “stink.”
Adopting a creative prop, he gave each commissioner a travel-sized deodorant stick with the Broward Health logo attached. We checked deGroot’s website for his own take on the impact of his protest theater. DeGroot and his “humongous allergy to bullshit” apparently failed to amuse the commissioners with the deodorant gifts.
Whatever his point was, he didn’t win the argument, and concluded that “bullshit is to the District Commissioners what beer commercials are to televised football.” What is difficult to figure out from the Times coverage is whether he was for or against the conversion to nonprofit status, or whether he’s simply ticked off that his property taxes rose 19 percent.
In an earlier blog posting, deGroot’s tax complaint seems rooted in what he believes is the unfair competition of “socialized medicine” (the public hospital system, apparently now converting to 501(c)(3) status) with other private hospitals. He concludes that the only solution to “put an end to these out-of-control bastards running Broward Health would be a special grand jury or a Tea Party of pissed off local taxpayers.” Somehow, deGroot’s failure to achieve humor seems understandable.—Rick Cohen