Update on Morse Felony Charges in Montana Poaching Case

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  #91  
Old 02-19-2011, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by barb1191 View Post
"bubba & son"
"Bubba & Son" ... that is priceless!

Actually, I think their names are Mark G(ary) Morse and H(arold) Gary Morse.
  #92  
Old 02-19-2011, 08:09 PM
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Actually, I think their names are Mark G(ary) Morse and H(arold) Gary Morse.
Yes, I believe Mark Morse's full name is Mark Gary Morse. So Mark Gary Morse is one person.

But who's counting?
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Old 02-19-2011, 08:13 PM
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Originally Posted by cabo35 View Post
Advogado Fact check: You gently admonish us by stating, "We should remember that the Italians justified Mussolini because he made the trains run on time. I guess we know how that turned out for Italy." My recollection of history, suggests more than a little divergence from your own. Italy after WWI was suffering from a poor economy, unrest, strikes and riots. It set the stage for Mussolini and his Fascist party's rise to power. To suggest his rise was attributable to getting the trains to run on time is a stretch. To suggest a parallel with The Villages and the Morse family is much more than a stretch. Are we now to add Mussolini to the Hitler, et al, characterizations of the developer. What happened to your advise to avoid argumentum ad hominem? Are you not fallaciously by innuendo comparing Morse with Mussolini?

You clearly cite the IRS case as an example of the developer imperiling our investment in The Villages. I would state it differently with less bias. In an earlier post I listed "what ifs" for optimists. Accordingly, in part they are:
.
what if someone realizes that The Villages is de facto, a municipality with legal sub-divisions called by a different name as a result of court and legislatively authorized government experimentation in-progress and accordingly, qualifies for the bond status in issue

what if someone applies common sense and realizes that TV and other Florida communities as well as similar new out of state developments are sanctioned experiments that need to go through a metamorphosis to reach their potential in serving the needs of people looking for something progressive and different in the way we are governed.

what if somebody realizes we are not a cult compound but a legally authorized form of government


The form of governance in Disney World and the Villages is unique. To a large extent, it is a bold experiment that has been adopted by copious jurisdictions in Florida and other states. From what I have read, issues have arisen that have no clearly defined precedent in state law or IRS regulations. They reside in the grey twilight of unsettled precedent. If the laws that generally regulate traditional government are without precedent in our form of governance, I would suggest in the matter you cite, the IRS is navigating uncharted waters. Ergo, the implications of The Villages IRS decision will set precedent for many others. In any case, what has Morse been charged with or convicted of that threatens your investment? How does perpetuating the worst case help our investments? Are you rooting against Morse? If so, aren't you rooting for a decision that will negatively impact your own interest and the interest of your friends and neighbors? I could be wrong, and I apologize accordingly, but it sounds like you are rooting for the IRS.

The Poaching Case. Regarding the topic at hand. The first point I would comment on is your rather persistent use of the term felony. You have clearly demonstrated that you are intelligent and have a command of the King's English. You also are clever enough to know that crimes are classified differently from state to state. You also know that true crimes are generally classified as crimes against the person and crimes against property. There is another classification that are labeled "offense" because they are not against property or people. Poaching is a statutory offense. It not against the person or property. It may be against moral principles and personal ethics. They are statutory offenses because they are regulatory in nature and defined by statute. Examples might be: a speeding ticket, failure to secure a building permit, littering, fishing without a license, hunting without a license, etc., etc. Crimes can also be classified as misdemeanors, high misdemeanor, felonies, disorderly person offenses. Each state is unique. In some states, misdemeanor is a felony and indictable and in some states its not. In Montana, poaching may or may not be a felony. Hunting elk without a license may be a crime, even a felony in Montana. To my knowledge withstanding possible correction, it is not in New Jersey. Further complicating the issue is the fact that law enforcement routinely overcharges with the highest classification and works for a plea to a lesser offense in the interest of saving time, money and resources. A disturbing question I have is the publicized fact that the investigation started 5 years ago. I imagine a good defense attorney can work with that fact. In conclusion, while being a devil's advocate of sorts, don't take that literally, I am disturbed by the conduct, if true, whatever it is classified. I do not understand why some resurrect and post 5 day old articles and call them updates if not to cast disparity on the character of the unconvicted and his family. But, that's just me.

You rather strongly make the case with your management integrity criteria analogy, that you would not invest with someone like Morse. You said, "If I were thinking of investing in a company and one of its top executives and his close associates were facing multiple felony charges, and, even worse, if that company, through its wholly owned newspaper, attempted to keep the news from the people with the most-legitimate interest in it, I would have serious misgivings about investing in that company."

How do your thoughtful, articulate representations impact those who read this forum and are on the fence about investing here? How does it impact someone who is thinking about investing in a small business here? How many homeowners and investors have you discouraged from investing? Could your observations be viewed as working against self interest, my interest and Villagers interest? By the way, the Villages Sun did carry the Montana story. Some research in the TOTV archives will produce its reference. It provided essential facts and shaded the article in the developer's interest. Your assertion that, "if that company, through its wholly owned newspaper, attempted to keep the news from the people with the most-legitimate interest in it, I would have serious misgivings about investing in that company." seems to be vicariously disingenuous. If Mr. Morse engaged someone to keep the news from the people as you suggest, he should dismiss them for incompetence.

You seemed to have tried and convicted Morse and his family on several broad based assumptions before the courts and the IRS have done their work. I respect your right to do so.

I have no connection whatsoever to the Morse family. I have been a critic of Mr. Morse on multiple occasions.

Thanks for the challenge.
Excellent points about the form of government.

Also, the Morses may be flawed, but it's certainly easier for me to justify the Morses than Mussolini! Good grief.
  #94  
Old 02-19-2011, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by cabo35 View Post
Advogado Fact check: You gently admonish us by stating, "We should remember that the Italians justified Mussolini because he made the trains run on time. I guess we know how that turned out for Italy." My recollection of history, suggests more than a little divergence from your own. Italy after WWI was suffering from a poor economy, unrest, strikes and riots. It set the stage for Mussolini and his Fascist party's rise to power. To suggest his rise was attributable to getting the trains to run on time is a stretch. To suggest a parallel with The Villages and the Morse family is much more than a stretch. Are we now to add Mussolini to the Hitler, et al, characterizations of the developer. What happened to your advise to avoid argumentum ad hominem? Are you not fallaciously by innuendo comparing Morse with Mussolini?

You clearly cite the IRS case as an example of the developer imperiling our investment in The Villages. I would state it differently with less bias. In an earlier post I listed "what ifs" for optimists. Accordingly, in part they are:
.
what if someone realizes that The Villages is de facto, a municipality with legal sub-divisions called by a different name as a result of court and legislatively authorized government experimentation in-progress and accordingly, qualifies for the bond status in issue

what if someone applies common sense and realizes that TV and other Florida communities as well as similar new out of state developments are sanctioned experiments that need to go through a metamorphosis to reach their potential in serving the needs of people looking for something progressive and different in the way we are governed.

what if somebody realizes we are not a cult compound but a legally authorized form of government


The form of governance in Disney World and the Villages is unique. To a large extent, it is a bold experiment that has been adopted by copious jurisdictions in Florida and other states. From what I have read, issues have arisen that have no clearly defined precedent in state law or IRS regulations. They reside in the grey twilight of unsettled precedent. If the laws that generally regulate traditional government are without precedent in our form of governance, I would suggest in the matter you cite, the IRS is navigating uncharted waters. Ergo, the implications of The Villages IRS decision will set precedent for many others. In any case, what has Morse been charged with or convicted of that threatens your investment? How does perpetuating the worst case help our investments? Are you rooting against Morse? If so, aren't you rooting for a decision that will negatively impact your own interest and the interest of your friends and neighbors? I could be wrong, and I apologize accordingly, but it sounds like you are rooting for the IRS.

The Poaching Case. Regarding the topic at hand. The first point I would comment on is your rather persistent use of the term felony. You have clearly demonstrated that you are intelligent and have a command of the King's English. You also are clever enough to know that crimes are classified differently from state to state. You also know that true crimes are generally classified as crimes against the person and crimes against property. There is another classification that are labeled "offense" because they are not against property or people. Poaching is a statutory offense. It not against the person or property. It may be against moral principles and personal ethics. They are statutory offenses because they are regulatory in nature and defined by statute. Examples might be: a speeding ticket, failure to secure a building permit, littering, fishing without a license, hunting without a license, etc., etc. Crimes can also be classified as misdemeanors, high misdemeanor, felonies, disorderly person offenses. Each state is unique. In some states, misdemeanor is a felony and indictable and in some states its not. In Montana, poaching may or may not be a felony. Hunting elk without a license may be a crime, even a felony in Montana. To my knowledge withstanding possible correction, it is not in New Jersey. Further complicating the issue is the fact that law enforcement routinely overcharges with the highest classification and works for a plea to a lesser offense in the interest of saving time, money and resources. A disturbing question I have is the publicized fact that the investigation started 5 years ago. I imagine a good defense attorney can work with that fact. In conclusion, while being a devil's advocate of sorts, don't take that literally, I am disturbed by the conduct, if true, whatever it is classified. I do not understand why some resurrect and post 5 day old articles and call them updates if not to cast disparity on the character of the unconvicted and his family. But, that's just me.

You rather strongly make the case with your management integrity criteria analogy, that you would not invest with someone like Morse. You said, "If I were thinking of investing in a company and one of its top executives and his close associates were facing multiple felony charges, and, even worse, if that company, through its wholly owned newspaper, attempted to keep the news from the people with the most-legitimate interest in it, I would have serious misgivings about investing in that company."

How do your thoughtful, articulate representations impact those who read this forum and are on the fence about investing here? How does it impact someone who is thinking about investing in a small business here? How many homeowners and investors have you discouraged from investing? Could your observations be viewed as working against self interest, my interest and Villagers interest? By the way, the Villages Sun did carry the Montana story. Some research in the TOTV archives will produce its reference. It provided essential facts and shaded the article in the developer's interest. Your assertion that, "if that company, through its wholly owned newspaper, attempted to keep the news from the people with the most-legitimate interest in it, I would have serious misgivings about investing in that company." seems to be vicariously disingenuous. If Mr. Morse engaged someone to keep the news from the people as you suggest, he should dismiss them for incompetence.

You seemed to have tried and convicted Morse and his family on several broad based assumptions before the courts and the IRS have done their work. I respect your right to do so.

I have no connection whatsoever to the Morse family. I have been a critic of Mr. Morse on multiple occasions.

Thanks for the challenge.
Cabo35,
Thanks for your response. You make very vigorous and well-reasoned points and criticisms, and I respect them. They are the kind of arguments that can make this Forum a worthwhile place to exchange views.

In fact, I was going to leave the subject alone, thinking that I had said what I wanted to say. But I will return to it to vigorously explain why I disagree with just about everything you say.

The Mussolini analogy. I never meant to equate the Morses, with Mussolini. Mussolini killed people. The Morses allegedly only kill deer and elk out of season, without a license, and then leave their carcasses to rot in the field. I actually doubt if many readers interpreted my remarks to mean that l thought the two types of crimes are morally equivalent.

Yes, I know that the defendants have not been found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt by a jury of their peers, but let's be realistic. At this stage of the judicial process, several governmental officials and organs (including, from news reports, a grand jury) have concluded that they probably are guilty. In any event, my analogy to Mussolini and the people of Italy was meant to indicate that just because a leader does a good job of running an orderly society, one should not overlook their bad deeds since an unethical leader can cause some very bad things to happen to his society. Poaching, in my view, can hardly be considered an activity that an ethical person would engage in. Whether or not it is a felony in New Jersey is irrelevant. It is a felony in Montana.

With respect to your statement that the Daily Sun did carry the poaching story, you have to be kidding. Only after the news appeared in papers throughout the country and virtually everybody here already knew about it, did the Sun finally report it. The report appeared on about page 9, with the title (in small print) to the effect of "Floridians charged in alleged game-law violation in Montana". The scanty references in the Sun to the IRS investigation have been similar and belated. I can cite other examples. This censorship doesn't bother you at all? It bothers the hell out of me. A lot of newspaper owners would tell their editors, "Report all the facts, and let the chips fall where they may."

The IRS Investigation I am very well aware that there are numerous other Community Development Districts in Florida that have also sold tax-exempt bonds and that those CDDs may be adversely affected by the outcome of the IRS investigation. I suppose that this may work to the benefit of The Villages Center Districts. I don't feel qualified to express my personal views on the merits of the IRS's claims; however, the potential costs of the IRS's sustaining its position are fairly easy to calculate.

While other CDDs have issued tax-exempt bonds, to the best of my knowledge, none of the other CDD developers have set up the equivalent of our center districts, where all the property is owned by the developer and all the board members are appointed by him. The IRS (and the class-action lawsuit) allege that this structure enables the developer to essentially sell the amenities and other property to himself at an artificially high price and pay the price with tax-exempt bonds. The IRS complains that the result is an over-issuance of tax exempt bonds, at the expense of the US Government. The class-action lawsuit complained that another result was such high debt-service costs that the Villages Center Development District was not financially able to fulfill its obligations with respect to furnishing amenities to The Villagers.

Am I rooting for the IRS to prevail, as you claim? Of course not, because if the IRS does prevail and if the resulting costs are not passed on to the Developer by the Center Districts, then you, I, and every other Villager will have a big problem to resolve. In trying to do so, we will have no homeowners' association to represent us (other than the POA, which has no dues-assessing power and which, thanks to the Developer's subsidizing the competing VHA, has a relatively small membership). In any event, nothing that you or I say here is going to affect the outcome of the IRS investigation.

Effect on Potential BuyersAs to your concern that posts like mine are scaring off potential buyers, the facts that I cite are a matter of public record and can be discovered by any potential buyer with access to the internet. Are you really saying that these facts, and they are facts, should be hidden from prospective buyers? Certainly, they do represent negative factors to be considered in deciding whether or not to buy here, but in making any investment, there are always positives and negatives. A prospective buyer is certainly entitled to know what the negatives ones are.

So, let's put the above negatives in perspective. There are offsetting positives. IF you want a place in Florida and you buy a house here instead of along the coast: you are much safer from hurricanes, crime, and traffic congestion, plus you will have access to a great life-style. My basic point is, let's be honest with each other, and let's not drink the Developer's Kool Aid without checking what's in it. All positives and negatives considered, I'm staying here, and Cabo35, I'm glad that you are apparently staying too.
  #95  
Old 02-19-2011, 10:51 PM
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Advogado - Touche ......good post. I suspect there is more agreement than conflict in our assessments. Perhaps are viewpoints are somewhat at odds but I believe we both want to see this community succeed and continue to be the standard by which others are measured for quality of life. Your comments on the IRS investigation make a complex subject easier to read and digest than many other attempts to explain it....including the Orlando paper. I'm sure TOTV members will agree.

Have a good day in The Villages.
  #96  
Old 02-19-2011, 11:03 PM
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Originally Posted by cabo35 View Post
Advogado - Touche ......good post. I suspect there is more agreement than conflict in our assessments. Perhaps are viewpoints are somewhat at odds but I believe we both want to see this community succeed and continue to be the standard by which others are measured for quality of life. Your comments on the IRS investigation make a complex subject easier to read and digest than many other attempts to explain it....including the Orlando paper. I'm sure TOTV members will agree.

Have a good day in The Villages.
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  #97  
Old 02-20-2011, 09:56 AM
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Cabo, Advogado,

Thank you for your well-reasoned arguments. They definitely made for good reading - and thinking!
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  #98  
Old 02-20-2011, 10:24 AM
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Effect on Potential BuyersAs to your concern that posts like mine are scaring off potential buyers, the facts that I cite are a matter of public record and can be discovered by any potential buyer with access to the internet. Are you really saying that these facts, and they are facts, should be hidden from prospective buyers? Certainly, they do represent negative factors to be considered in deciding whether or not to buy here, but in making any investment, there are always positives and negatives. A prospective buyer is certainly entitled to know what the negatives ones are.

So, let's put the above negatives in perspective. There are offsetting positives. IF you want a place in Florida and you buy a house here instead of along the coast: you are much safer from hurricanes, crime, and traffic congestion, plus you will have access to a great life-style. My basic point is, let's be honest with each other, and let's not drink the Developer's Kool Aid without checking what's in it. All positives and negatives considered, I'm staying here, and Cabo35, I'm glad that you are apparently staying too.
Absolutely agree - I am a prospective Villager, and NONE of the negative news about the developers gives me one moments doubt of my desire to live there. In fact a prevailing opinion that the developers are infallible, and that news negative to them should not be brought to light, would give me more pause than knowing that many of my neighbors were interested in the truth no matter where it falls. And since I was the one who brought up Hitler, and stated that I was in no way comparing the Morse's to him, I will say again that the analogy was used as an extreme example of people turning their heads to moral depravity because their lives are generally improved. The Villages concept is a fabulous and successful one which will likely outlive the developers and survive any personal missteps they continue to make.
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Old 02-21-2011, 10:31 AM
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"Absolutely agree - I am a prospective Villager, and NONE of the negative news about the developers gives me one moments doubt of my desire to live there. In fact a prevailing opinion that the developers are infallible, and that news negative to them should not be brought to light, would give me more pause than knowing that many of my neighbors were interested in the truth no matter where it falls. And since I was the one who brought up Hitler, and stated that I was in no way comparing the Morse's to him, I will say again that the analogy was used as an extreme example of people turning their heads to moral depravity because their lives are generally improved. The Villages concept is a fabulous and successful one which will likely outlive the developers and survive any personal missteps they continue to make." -- Oldcoach Ed

From my view, I disagree. I too have considered looking at the Villages as a place to retire. A developer who has such a lack of respect for life certainly makes me think twice about giving him any part of my hard-earned money. I consider a person who poaches or mistreats animals, on the same moral level as someone like the dogfighter football player -- (someone or another) Vic.
I certainly would never turn my head to that sort of behavior just because the Villages is such a nice place to live.
And...I really thank the original poster here for bringing this to my attention, it should be brought to light.
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:25 AM
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From my view, I disagree. I too have considered looking at the Villages as a place to retire. A developer who has such a lack of respect for life certainly makes me think twice about giving him any part of my hard-earned money. I consider a person who poaches or mistreats animals, on the same moral level as someone like the dogfighter football player -- (someone or another) Vic.
I certainly would never turn my head to that sort of behavior just because the Villages is such a nice place to live.
And...I really thank the original poster here for bringing this to my attention, it should be brought to light.
With all due respect, if you live your life avoiding any of your money going to line the pockets of morally or ethically challenged people you will have little to spend your money on. In fact you will be forced to avoid paying taxes!

I too thank the original poster for bringing this up and beleive in truth and justice being vigorously pursued. I intend to buy a previously owned property so relatively little of my home purchase dollars will find their way to the developer. What money of mine does end up in the developers pocket will be well deserved, as it will be a reward to them for providing a great community in which to live.
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  #101  
Old 02-21-2011, 12:53 PM
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Mermaid,

You now are not going to consider living in The Villages because one of the Developer's sons is charged (not yet found guilty) of poaching game (hunting on his own property without a personal hunting license)? You equate this to running a dog fighting ring like Michael Vick?

Did that sirloin steak you had for dinner come from a cow that committed suicide? Did that lobster do a swan-dive into the pot of boiling water thinking he was competing for Lobster Olympics? If you are a total vegan, you are in a class by yourself. If you eat eggs, think about the chickens in the little cages; if you drink milk, think about the dairy farms. There is animal cruelty in all of those things so do not get on a high horse (no pun intended) about hunting showing a lack of morality. I do not hunt but that is my personal choice and I do not condemn others for doing it.

Wait for a verdict before condemning anyone.
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Old 02-24-2011, 10:20 AM
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Poaching on his own land? Oh, that makes it ok, sort of like doing a crime is fine if you are in your own space! LOL
Now I have a couple of potential questions about the Villages, and am very interested to know about a place before I would move there. Who wouldn't? I'm sure you & everyone else who moved down checked the place out first. I want to live in a place where I am comfortable with, for lack of a better word, the ambiance. This extends to the developer as well.
Unfortunately, I have read, on these boards, many comments about liberals & their politics; about ethnicity, and generalities about those less fortunate than the middle class. This last episode concerning a creep (developer) who thought nothing about cutting off the legs of an animal so he could get a better ego photo op was really disturbing. All this gives me a lot to think about. However, I was pleased that most of the comments here showed that the residents were very upset about his actions.
I really appreciate the information that I glean from here, and enjoy reading all the comments.
As for my eating habits, we live out in the country, neighbor farmers here supply the food we don't grow ourselves, I know how it is raised. I have a pretty clear conscience. My dietary habits have nothing to do with some bubba poacher who has too much money & no sense of what is right or wrong. We do not hunt either, but as long as it is done legally, and humanely and with the intent to eat, it is acceptable.
  #103  
Old 02-24-2011, 10:23 AM
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Poaching on his own land? Oh, that makes it ok, sort of like doing a crime is fine if you are in your own space! LOL
Now I have a couple of potential questions about the Villages, and am very interested to know about a place before I would move there. Who wouldn't? I'm sure you & everyone else who moved down checked the place out first. I want to live in a place where I am comfortable with, for lack of a better word, the ambiance. This extends to the developer as well.
Unfortunately, I have read, on these boards, many comments about liberals & their politics; about ethnicity, and generalities about those less fortunate than the middle class. This last episode concerning a creep (developer) who thought nothing about cutting off the legs of an animal so he could get a better ego photo op was really disturbing. All this gives me a lot to think about. However, I was pleased that most of the comments here showed that the residents were very upset about his actions.
I really appreciate the information that I glean from here, and enjoy reading all the comments.
As for my eating habits, we live out in the country, neighbor farmers here supply the food we don't grow ourselves, I know how it is raised. I have a pretty clear conscience. My dietary habits have nothing to do with some bubba poacher who has too much money & no sense of what is right or wrong. We do not hunt either, but as long as it is done legally, and humanely and with the intent to eat, it is acceptable.
You will probably not be happy in The Villages.
  #104  
Old 02-24-2011, 10:40 AM
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Mermaid, I totally disagree with Bogie. Do I like the developer and the conservative nature of many Villagers? Of course not! Do I live happily having an ultra-right neighbor? You betchya (and I even enjoy sharing a meal with them). Do I resent not being able to listen to any non-Republican politician on TV property? Yes. Do I think the Daily Sun is a joke as a newspaper? Yuppers, but it serves its purpose -- to let us know what is going on in TV and to sell TV to visitors.

The developer is not The Villages. The people who live here are. You will not find a more generous group of people anywhere on this planet than you will find here. You drop your wallet and the odds are it will be returned completely intact (other than trying to find out how to contact you). You broke your leg? Be prepared for everyone on your street trying to help take care of you. Your house burned down? Don't be surprised if complete strangers offer their home to you.

Since the Morses want to sell homes and make money, they do an excellent job of maintaining the common properties. Thanks to volunteers, there are lots of clubs to join, things to do. The golf courses are pretty well-maintained. The rec centers are well-decorated, always clean, have almost anything you need for any game or sport.

TV is not perfect -- not even for a conservative -- but it is a pretty dang good place to live and enjoy. Don't judge it on its political leanings nor by the developers. They've done a good job of building TV. They're human; they use bad judgment at times. They can be as arrogant and self-centered as any human, especially a human with money. But they're not The Villages!

BTW -- It was not a Morse who cut the legs off the elk for the photo op -- it was Rainey.
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  #105  
Old 02-24-2011, 10:59 AM
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Location: Village of Glenbrook in The Villages
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Mermaid,
Redwitch is absolutely right about The Villages being a slice of Heaven with wonderful people all around. I am thankful every day that my wife and I moved here.

You will not be able to grow your own food here except for a few tomato plants, etc. Definitely, do look into the meat and fishing industry to see what kind of cruelty goes on there and you will see a hunter not being such a bad character.

Hunting on your own 50,000 acres should not be a crime - and isn't a crime in Montana - unless you are a non-resident owner. The outfitter's license was supposed to suffice for all the persons hunting but actually was a sting operation. A well paid lawyer will get them off.
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