Friday, June 29, 2018

What Connecticut Can Learn From the Capital Gazette Shooting


Most left of center commentators lost interest in the Capital Gazette shooting in Annapolis Maryland soon after it became obvious that there was little to no connection to Trumpian rhetoric slighting the “fake news” media. For any number of good reasons, media face time procured by the state’s two U.S. Senators, Dick Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, was minimal.

Moments after the shooting, Murphy issued a dog-eared, often repeated refrain: “I’m sick and tired of this. My colleagues have accepted horrific mass violence and made the deliberate choice to do nothing about it. If politicians wanted to reduce gun violence, they would do their jobs and pass laws that we know would make a difference.”

Thursday, June 28, 2018

High Court Confirms Workers’ First Amendment Rights

To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves, is sinful and tyrannical –Thomas Jefferson

The sentiment above is to be found in an Act for Establishing Religious Freedom, a bill drawn up by Thomas Jefferson as part of the Revised Code of Virginia laws, but the sentiment might easily apply to Janus vs. AFSCME, a decision rendered recently by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Blumenthal's Route To Trump’s Heart



The members of Connecticut’s U.S. Congressional Delegation, all Democrats, are not dummies. Savvy professional politicians, they know that the way to President Donald Trump’s heart is through the mouth of Ben Carson, Trump’s U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary.

In a Journal Inquirer news report on June 21,2018, we find four members of the delegation – U.S. Senators Chris Murphy and Dick Blumenthal, plus U.S. Representatives Joe Courtney and John Larson – thanking Carson for having taken the time at their urging to visit a house in Connecticut the foundation of which was crumbling because the cement used to make the foundation was contaminated with pyrrhotite, a mineral that causes deterioration when exposed to groundwater.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Lamont’s Post-Convention Messaging


Ned Lamont, the Democrat Party’s certified candidate for governor, having run the nomination knout, is now proceeding to run primary election bases.

NBC Connecticut has noted a pronounced difference in messaging: Lamont Distances from Malloy at Technology Forum.

Governor Malloy has relied on targeted tax reductions and tax grants to persuade companies to remain in Connecticut and avoid migrating to other states in order to escape the governor’s burdensome taxes and the Democrat dominated General Assembly’s noxious regulations.

"I think we've gone snap happy in terms of trying get and keep businesses,” Lamont said at a forum hosted by the Connecticut Technology Council. Lamont told the group he was not interested in providing bailouts to Connecticut’s tax starved cities: "I'm not interested in bailouts, I didn't like that deal at all, but there have to be other ways to help our cities,” which are, never-the-less, critical to the growth of the state.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Themis Alive


Some time ago, Republican leader in the State House Themis Klarides reminded a reporter that she was Greek. Her first name, she said, meant “justice.”

That was almost right. Themis was an ancient Greek Titaness, the “lady of good counsel,” a personification of divine order, fairness, law, natural law and custom. The name Themis literally means “that which is put in place.” The symbols by which Themis is known are the scales of justice, tools in the ontological order that assure balance.

Balance is the baseline in the Greek cosmos according to which right order is measured. To know whether a thing is right and just – morally, legally, ethically, religiously, secularly, atheistically -- one must have more than a nodding acquaintance with reality. Idle dreaming is a fatal threat to right order. Political visions – modern politics is consumed with visions the ancient Greeks might have considered nightmares – are justifiable and practical only when they take into account the reality of life on the ground. Therefore, the best and most just politician is the one most solidly grounded in reality.

Friday, June 08, 2018

Murphy’s Money



It was a trifle embarrassing, but U.S. Senator from Connecticut Chris Murphy was able adroitly to dodge the bullet.

“This week,” the  Journal Inquirer reported “Murphy dodged questions about [receiving campaign] tainted money from Spitzer, and instead focused on contributions from average people.”

Elliot Spitzer, a former New York Attorney General and Governor, resigned blushingly in 2008 to dodge impeachment following reports in the New York Times, the JI reported, “that he had patronized prostitutes, highlighting a meeting for two hours with a $1,000-per-hour prostitute…

Tuesday, June 05, 2018

Truman Revisited



Image result for harry TrumanA historical revision of Harry Truman has been underway for some time. Historians are now smiling at the 33rd President. His was an accidental presidency, and his contemporaries, the political swamp of his day, did not like accidents. The more things change, as the French say, the more they remain the same.

Victor David Hanson -- a classicist historian and the author of “The Second World Wars: How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won,” in addition to “A War Like No Other,” the best and most riveting account of the Peloponnesian War (431–404 BC) between Athens and Sparta -- has written the best short account of the Truman presidency for The Washington Times.

Anti-Trumpists will be spooked by the title and subtitle: “Truman as a model for Donald Trump: The outsider president succeeds because of what he does, and in spite of what he says.”

Saturday, June 02, 2018

Trump, Help Or Hindrance In Connecticut


While in the South – land of opportunity for Northern expats – I was asked by a Connecticut resident who had moved below the Mason-Dixon line several years ago seeking relief from ever-expanding taxation, the general reluctance to make long term permanent cuts in spending, excessive regulation, and the arrogance of progressives who had ruined his state, “Will President Trump be a help or a hindrance for Connecticut Republicans running for office in 2018?”

The non-simplistic answer to the question on everyone’s mind is, as the new moralists might say, complex. The complex answer depends upon a shifting political frame.

Will Connecticut Democrats be able to disassociate themselves sufficiently from the ruinous policies of departing Governor Dannel Malloy, whose approval ratings, never high, have now dipped far below the approval ratings of the Democrat’s straw man, the redoubtable Trump, whose ratings are in the ascendancy – though, one supposes, not in Connecticut?