The man that beats the mouse

Nothing makes a petulant man more angry than a mouse.

Seems Disney’s is in for a good beating.

In economic terms this is ultra significant. We are talking the ability to shut down operations based on personality conflicts over absolutely nothing. Make believe. Lies insinuendo etc…

It seems pulverizing a corporation is possible and we must take note as investors.

But I wont get into the details in this post as it goes political. I will just link the story.

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My guess is that Disney’s lawyers can make this dispute last longer than, I don’t know, let’s say 21 years after the death of the last survivor of the descendants of King Charles III of England.


The state of Florida can put tolls on the roads leading to the park. The state can tax the hotels. The state can do other things long before…

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“If the Legislature is targeting an existing contract and specifically impairs the contract, that is a constitutional problem,” Schumer said. “Going back and voiding a contract would be very difficult to defend in court. I would think Disney would have a much stronger case.”

The state already violated a contract when it revoked Reedy Creek’s authority.



The state police can simply block all access to Disney property.



Heck, why not just place a Cone of Silence over the entire park so we don’t have to listen to It’s a Small World After All over and over and over ……


So much for the one political party being “the party of business” and creating “business friendly environments.”


…as long as business conforms to the narrative that is put forward to attract the party base. I am confident that tax cuts, subsidies, and no-strings handouts to “JCs” will continue, as long as they conform.



Now that I think of it, it might be more effective to put a Cone of Silence over the state capital.


Recall, the difficulty with the cone was that the only person who could not hear the person speaking in one end of the cone, was the person in the other end of the cone. Everyone else in the room could hear both parties in the cone perfectly well.



The CoS was not pushed down far enough to be effective.


Yep. If you could get it say, 6 feet below ground level, it would probably be reasonably effective.




The legislature holds the pen that writes the statutes. It’s almost impossible to win in court if the law has been re-written to remove the legal basis for your position.

Development agreements (like the one Disney obtained) have no basis in common or constitutional law - they’re purely a creation of Section 163.3221, et. seq., which is the Florida Development Agreement Act. If the Legislature wants, they can re-write those rules (either in Chapter 163 or in the RCID 2.0 legislation). If they rewrite the rules to say, “Disney loses in court,” then Disney is going to lose in court. And probably very quickly.

Declarations of restrictive covenants (the second instrument Disney obtained) are recognized under the common law, and it would be much harder for the Legislature to undo it by legislation. But they don’t need to. The District has the power of eminent domain - they can simply condemn the property interest that Disney holds under the Covenant, and it disappears. Now - they have to pay for that interest. When you exercise eminent domain to “seize” the dominant estate that encumbers your property, it’s a taking of private property - and thus subject to the requirement of just compensation. But remember - 100% of the District’s budget comes from Disney. So all they have to do is quick-take the covenant interest, let Disney take them to court for the compensation…but it all just comes out of Disney’s pocket anyway, so what would be the point?

The real tragedy here is that this is all a self-created fudge-up caused by DeSantis’ political flunkies. The two instruments are actually pretty marginal. They don’t actually strip the District of any of its power. In fact, they don’t really deprive the district of any authority that it was ever going to realistically exercise in the first place. But since one of the board members went to the media and claimed that Disney had they had perpetrated this perfidious scheme that successfully stripped them of all their power…well, that complete fabrication became the reality in both the conservative and progressive factions, forcing De Santis and the Legislature to act. Disney miscalculated how uninformed and ignorant the appointees would end up being - they did something pretty modest and reasonable that should have been mostly ignored by the new board, but their foolishness created yet another political conflict.


albaby, glad to see your input here. I have the utmost respect for your opinions and your knowledge of law.

But the above comment seems a bit of a stretch to this non-lawyer.

My thoughts, as I stock upon popcorn, are:

  1. FL courts will not be the final arbiters

  2. never underestimate big corporate lawyers

Then again, I think the Cone of Silence really exists. :slight_smile:

Oh, I didn’t mean that literally - that they would write the actual words, “Disney loses in court.”

But it’s trivial to think of any number of statutory fixes that would kneecap Disney’s legal position. For example, the Development Agreement Act already lists a few scenarios under which a development agreement can be abrogated. All they have to do is add to them something like:

“For development agreements entered into after January 1, 2020, a local government may modify or revoke a development agreement that governs 15,000 or more acres after finding after a public hearing that there has been a material change in background traffic flows, if such development agreement was not originally accompanied by a traffic study projecting background traffic growth, and where the developer has not made more than $10 million in roadway improvements since the adoption of the agreement.”

So then the RDIC 2.0 district revokes the DA, nice and legal under the new statute. Disney goes to court and complains - but the judge notes correctly that the district’s actions are perfectly legal under the then-current statute. The new statute is completely defensible, and based (in part) on the fact that Disney didn’t do that great a job papering the development agreement they got approved.

Easy-peasy lemon squeezy. And that’s just one example - there’s a million different ways to do this.


Ex post facto law, so violates the state/federal Constitutions. The state would have to then show where they enforced the SAME law against others in FL who did all the same/comparable things–and were held subject to the same newly-passed law.

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It is not an ex post facto law, since it only applies prospectively. Plus, the EPF Clause applies to criminal laws (and their equivalent), not things like development agreement.

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The EPF clause applies to all laws, not just criminal ones. Otherwise, DeathSanta would have already created a law Disney would have already violated.

It would be “interesting” if Disney chose to CLOSE their Florida businesses until the state govt pulled their heads out of their butts. Billions of dollars lost–especially by a state that lives on tourism.

No, it doesn’t.

The Supreme Court has interpreted the Post Facto Clauses to limit only legislation that is criminal or penal in nature.

Legislatures are perfectly free to adopt retroactive legislation if it is non-criminal.

Again, this example doesn’t violate the EPF Clause because it does not render past conduct that was legal at the time criminally punishable. It only applies prospectively, giving the district the ability in the future to hold a hearing and undo the agreement.

Thanks, albaby. That makes more sense. In my previous life working in the tax department of a Fortune 500 company, I would be researching tax issues and it wasn’t unusual to come upon something like “Section 123.456 of the tax code does not apply to corporations created on March 28, 1927 in St. Louis, Mo.”

Of course these were exceptions to help a friend, not hurt them.

I also think that FL has to be careful (although, as you’ve previously pointed out, the state doesn’t appear to have the best and the brightest on staff) not to cause too much pain to Disney because that could easily spread to FL through layoffs of some of their 77k local employees and financial damages to local businesses.

Also, I don’t think the Disney attorneys are light weights. I’m guessing that they’ve thought this whole thing through more than a few moves. Who knows what evil clauses lurk in those old Disney contracts.

Anyway, stock up on popcorn. This is going to be fun and we will see who gets the last laugh.

Like that old Klingon saying, revenge is a dish best served cold.