Gary Mormino on the Social History of Forida


episode page:

Do you think Florida is weird? Most everyone does. Why? Gary is the man to answer this question. Gary is Professor Emeritus of the University of South Florida and has dedicated his career to studying the social history of Florida.

Here is Gary on wikipedia
Here is Gary on Amazon

Quote of the show: “Do crazy people immigrate to Florida or do perfectly normal people come here, and then be a little goofy and go crazy.”

What is the most unusual social characteristic of Florida? 0:00
What are some of the most distinctive features of Florida? 9:37
Florida’s “Florida Man” reputation. 15:49
California and Florida are neck and neck in population density growth in last 100 years. 24:51
Florida is running out of options for reinsuring barrier islands. 35:55
What it costs to live on the coast in Florida. 40:18
How is Florida a Ponzi State? 42:28
What’s the real alternative? 46:55
What are the similarities and differences between Florida and other states in terms of immigration? 53:49
How the Cuban vote has been a solid republican vote since 1961

Why did I do this show?

Gary is ridiculously underrated. Florida is a massive deal and its reputation for weirdness screams out for explanation. There is an insurance question here of course but come on, why don’t more people know Gary Mormino!

What did I learn?

As I expected Florida can probably be explained using a kind of factor analysis of its sociological parts. It is old, its immigrant politics are relatively dominated by communist refugees so skews right, it is “California on the cheap”. We can dig into each of these things and understand that they are all perfectly normal but their combination yields a fascinating place.

What was my favorite part?

This section is sometimes hard for me to write but I’ve got an embarrassment of riches in this episode. The winner HAS to be Gary describing the giant senior community that launches presidential campaigns where everyone drives golf carts instead of cars.

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