Saturday, October 27, 2012

Courant Endorsements


The last of the Hartford Courant’s increasingly irrelevant U.S. Congressional delegation endorsements appeared in the paper on Friday.

The Courant -- shocking the entire state – endorsed U.S. Representative Chris Murphy over former soft-porn WWE impresario Linda McMahon who, in the course of her run for Joe Lieberman’s soon to be vacant seat, snubbed Connecticut’s left of center media.

Courant endorsements are “conservative” in the bad sense. Connecticut’s congressional delegation is non-diverse; all the members of the delegation are Democrats, and it is clear, following the paper’s endorsement of Elizabeth Esty over moderate Republican Andrew Roraback, that the publisher of the paper and its editorial board members prefer it this way.

Adding its endorsement of Democrat Elizabeth Esty’s to that of former Speaker of the U.S. House Nancy Pelosi, the Hartford Courant in its editorial, “Democrat's positions edge Andrew Roraback's bona fides,” tipped its hat to moderate Republican challenger Andrew Roraback’s bona fides, but found that his fides weren’t bona enough.

Mr. Roraback has billed himself during his campaign against Mrs. Esty, the wife of Governor Dannel Malloy’s Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), Daniel Esty, as a moderate Republican. In left of center editorial board lingo, “moderates” are much preferred over conservative and libertarian Republicans. Mr. Roraback earned his stripes as a moderate by setting himself apart from doctrinaire Republicans elsewhere in the country and flashing his bona fides as a “fiscal conservative,” code language to indicate his disassociation from disreputable “social conservatives,” not to mention toxic members of the much misunderstood – one might say purposely misunderstood – members of the Tea Party.

Perhaps if Mr. Roraback had billed himself as a “maverick Republican,” following in the footsteps of former U.S. Senator and Governor Lowell Weicker, his fides would have been acceptable to the Courant’s editorial board. A maverick, as opposed to a moderate, is a Republican whose active distaste for all things Republican  places him firmly in the Democratic camp.

Maverick Republicans are masked Democrats working within the party to subvert it. They are disguised sappers, ideological first cousins of the editorial writers at the Courant who generally advance super subtle reasons for bestrewing endorsements on leftist candidates.

Reason number one: The endorsed candidate has more practical experience than the challenger. Since Democrats in Connecticut, with invaluable assists from sappers, now command the governor’s office, the state House, the state Senate and the state Supreme Court -- Yes Virginia, the court is subtly affected by powerful partisan politicians, whatever you may have read about its vaunted courageous independence – the Courant’s rationale supports the present status quo Democratic hegemon.

The first casualty of this all too convenient rationale is the much cited journalistic doctrine that the proper mission of the media, when it is doing its job, is to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. Within Connecticut, comfortable Democrats-for-life occupying gerrymandered districts, such as U.S. Representatives John Larson and multimillionaire Rosa DeLauro, are among scores of incumbent Democrats unmolested by the state’s purported non-partisan left of center media. Consistently applied, the doctrine that one should always vote for the more experienced candidate is subversive of democracy, which depends upon a fluid and diverse governing class: It is an argument favoring permanent and unchanging governance – perpetual rule by incumbents.      

It should be noted that in its Esty endorsement  the Courant carved out an exception to its own general rule. Of the two candidates vying for the U.S. House in the 5th District, Mr. Roraback has more governing experience. And he certainly meets the paper’s second criteria without which candidates for office fail to receive its endorsements: The potential endorsee must forswear any political alliance with national Republicans on so called “social issues.” In this regard, true believing editorialists on the left reflexively support progressive Democrats.  

Mrs. Esty, more reliably left wing than Mr. Roraback, was blessed with the Courant’s endorsement -- because the paper’s principle ideological duty, now and forever, is to hold back a fictitious horde of conservatives from assaulting the gates of paradise, a utopian vision of governance in which the governing authority overwhelms what social scientists sometimes call mediating institutions: the family, the church, voluntary associations, independent business enterprises and, somewhere close to the top of the list, a reified Republican  Party dedicated to weaning the  individual from a paternalistic state.
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