Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Lawlor, Malloy’s Second Chance Society And The Racist Red Herring

Mike Lawlor, Governor Dannel Malloy’s law and order chieftain, has a Chris Christie in his craw.

The Governor of New Jersey, a convenient campaign foil for Eastern Seaboard progressives such as Mr. Malloy, was recently cited in a news report, as a Republican not infested with racism who seemed to support a measure used by Connecticut progressives, Mr. Malloy among them, to tar Connecticut Republicans with racism – not by intent but by outcome. In the Malloy Eden, it is possible for an innocent Republican who opposes a Malloy measure to slither into a racist mode. To be sure, Connecticut Republicans, a moderate lot for the most part, intend no racism. But by questioning the hoped for outcome of Mr. Malloy’s “Second Chance Society,” they have shown themselves to be "racist in outcome."

Monday, May 25, 2015

The Clinton Goo, The Smoking E-Mails and Assorted Blumenthals

Only a few days after ABC News celebrity George Stephanopoulos got himself stuck in the ubiquitous Clinton goo, apparently an occupational hazard for friends of Bill and Hillary, Sidney Blumenthal – not to be confused with U.S. Senator Dick Blumenthal, also a dear friend of the Clintons – found himself stretched on the journalistic rack.

Mr. Blumenthal was first outed by a hacker known as “Guccifer,” who posted on-line four memos Mr. Blumenthal had written to Mrs. Clinton, the probable Democratic nominee for president. The e-mails were hacked from Mrs. Clintons’s private, unauthorized server, the one that the Secret Service boys were guarding in her mansion in Chappaqua, New York.  “Guccifer” apparently has done what all the Republican horses and all the Republican men thus far have been incapable of doing – prying from Mrs. Clinton’s clenched fist some e-mails touching on Benghazi she thought to keep private by operating from a private, and possibly illegal, server.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Malloy, A Plagiarist In Effect

Connecticut commentators were shocked – SHOCKED! – to find that Grover Norquist, founder and president of Americans for Tax Reform, an organization that opposes all tax increases, and Governor Dannel Malloy, a progressive, though less progressive than Socialist Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont or progressive love-child Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, should both agree that minor drug use should not be criminalized.

Mr. Norquist objects to mandatory sentencing for minor drug use because he rightly believes that sentencing should be a judicial rather than a legislative function.

Bill Buckley, considered by some to have midwifed the modern conservative movement, thought the same and proposed that drug use should be decriminalized.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Global Warming And Saudi Arabian Ice Caps

President Barack Obama visited the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in New London last Wednesday, bearing an Al-Gore-like message to the assembled military troops. “Obama Stresses Security Threat Of Climate Change” read an editorial in a Hartford paper.

Shaken editorial writers proclaimed, “… Mr. Obama has an urgent alarm to sound. He's made climate change a top priority for the remainder of his second term. He's had trouble, however, bringing the Republican-led Congress onboard, so he's resorted to a series of executive orders. ‘Going forward,’ he said Wednesday, ‘I've committed to doubling the pace at which we cut carbon pollution’ on many fronts — more efficient buildings and power plants, renewables, energy research.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Connecticut’s Last Gasp

When the coroner bends over the body and pronounces Connecticut officially dead, some people, among them the enlightened members of the state’s dwindling editorial boards, will want to know the details: What finally did the patient in, and could the mortally ill patient have been saved had our political prescriptions been different?

The coroner’s likely verdict will be that Connecticut died as lobsters do when they are put in a pot of cool, salted water, the heat being gradually raised to the boiling point. At the beginning of the process, the lobster thinks it has finally arrived home in Homer’s welcoming, wine-dark sea; but, as the water grows hotter, its plight gradually begins to dawn upon it. It’s cooked; there is no exit.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Looney to Connecticut’s Middle Class: Your Money Or Your Life

Politicians, like most people, tend to repeat successful behaviors long after they have ceased to be successful. In the political arena, one must carefully define “success.”

It ought to be obvious by now that what is good for the political goose is not always good for the non-political gander. High taxes, for instance, are good for progressive politicians, because boosting taxes rather than cutting spending does not generally bruise the tender relations between the progressive politician and his politically active supporters, who most often fall on the tax consuming side of the political barricades; state worker unions, for instance, flourish under the care of progressive politicians.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Defending The Indefensible

The scramble for victim’s status has begun. Criminals, it turns out, also may be the victims of their own crimes, and provocateurs may be the victims of their own provocations.

Shortly after Governor Dannel Malloy announced to reporters that Republican Party opposition to his “Second Chance Society” program was inherently racist – not in intent but in outcome -- the Republican leadership in the General Assembly bit back.

Mr.  Malloy’s formulation allows the accuser to sidestep the imputation that he is a liar, or worse: We all know you are not a racist. Your intentions are good, even praiseworthy – but the outcome of your intentions is racist. By this means, one may forgive the Devil himself.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Malloy Hits The Racist Button

We all know that criminal laws have a disparate impact on cities. The famous bank robber Willie Sutton, once asked why he robbed banks, replied with disarming honesty “because that’s where the money is.” Likewise, asked why drug prosecutions are more prevalent in Hartford than they are in, say, tony Greenwich, an honest prosecutor, if there is such an animal, might reply “because that’s where the drug dealers are." The answer to the question why are there more drug runners in Hartford than Greenwich is a little more complex.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Budget And Business Stability Take A Hike In Connecticut

Very quietly and without any fanfare, Governor Dannel Malloy on May 11 began negotiations on the state budget with Democratic legislative leaders Senate President Pro Tem Martin Looney and House Speaker Brendan Sharkey. The two leaders days earlier had given their approval to a finance committee approved budget that raised taxes considerably and was light on spending cuts. A budget produced by Republicans was its opposite number. Perhaps taking Mr. Malloy at his word, the Republican budget was balanced and contained no new taxes – just the sort of budget Mr. Malloy might have approved, if he took seriously his own campaign pledges. Several times during the gubernatorial campaign season, Mr. Malloy embraced a no new taxes budget plan. The budget Mr. Malloy presented to the General Assembly was out of balance and, said its critics, rather severe on groups of people who are forced by circumstances to throw themselves on the mercy of strangers.

Saturday, May 09, 2015

Red Flags Over Connecticut

Chief Executive Magazine, a publication read by national and international Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of major and minor firms, has just released its list of best and worst places to do business in the United States.

Connecticut ranks four spots from last on the list. Three comments from CEOs were far from reassuring:

“A difficult tax structure like the ones in New York or Connecticut makes incentive-giving easy, but penalizes existing businesses,” said one. “The climate for coming is better than the climate for staying.”