They Like Big Boats

Here's the latest from John DeGroot, who uncovers some interesting data in time for Fort Lauderdale Boat Show. The numbers of yacht owners have boomed during the Bush presidency. And let me tell you, it's a lot easier to stomach the disaster in Iraq, the erosion of civil liberties, and the general decline of this nation when you're cruising in a giant pleasure craft.

Boat Show Emmis By John DeGroot

Each year, the swallows return to Capistrano, Bush announces progress in Iraq and the local media engage in a gushy orgasm over the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show.

Prediction: Local TV will send its cutesy “feature” reporters to detail all the floating toys we can’t afford while the print media will strive for some serious chicken-little journalism by nut-graphing the current hard times to the boat industry

No matter.

What follows are a few hard facts you won’t see or read amid the local media’s boat show orgy – starting with the simple fact that Florida’s expensive, gas guzzling boat business has been pretty damn good during the reign of George the Second.

Registered Pleasure Vessels* (*Less Canoes)

2000 2006 % change

Florida 836,313 979,576 17%% Over 26 feet 70,057 94,720 35%

Broward 40,663 49,011 21% Over 26 feet 7,428 10,187 37%

Miami Dade 53,190 57,859 9% Over 26 feet 7,835 10,758 37%

Palm Beach 38,684 43,257 12% Over 26 feet 5,660 7,218 28%

SE Florida 132,537 150,127 13% Over 26 feet 20,923 28,163 35%

SOURCE: Florida Department of Motor Vehicles

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Journalist Bob Norman has been raking the muck of South Florida for the past 25 years. His work has led to criminal cases against corrupt politicians, the ouster of bad judges from the bench, and has garnered dozens of state, regional, and national awards.
Contact: Bob Norman