Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Connecticut Dems Playing With Socialist Fire

National Democrats are, ever so gently, following socialist Pied Piper U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders back to the cave.  Connecticut Democrats, progressive to the bone, are likely to go along for the ride. The Pied Piper, it will be recalled, was hired by the mayor of Hamlin to rid the town of rats, which he did by piping them an enchanting tune. The mayor of the town refused payment, and the Pied Piper later avenged himself by piping the town’s children to a cave, where they were never heard from again. There are two morals to the story: debts incurred must be paid, and the instruments of destruction you use against your enemies easily may be turned upon yourself.

Forbes Magazine has examined the detailed Congressional Democrat tax hike plan. Many of us, including Newsweek magazine, have long concluded that "We Are All Socialists Now." The Democrat detailed plan includes, according to Forbes, an increase in the top marginal income tax rate from 37 percent to 39.6 percent; an increase in the corporate income tax rate from 21 percent to 25 percent; an alternative minimum tax (AMT) for 4 million families; a cut by half in the "death tax" standard deduction; and other useful progressive campaign stuffers.

Tuesday, October 09, 2018

The Kavanaugh Hearing: Who Let The Dogs Out?

Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh has been installed on the U.S. Supreme Court.  A voting majority on both sides of the apparently permanent political barricades is breathing sighs of relief, if only because the chaotic Senate hearings are over. Most people are bone weary of the political posturing and wonder how much permanent damage the U.S. Senate, not to mention the Supreme Court, may have suffered.

Nothing on the Democrat side of the barricades will be over until the party triumvirate – U.S. Senators Dick Blumenthal, Dianne Feinstein and Chuck Schumer – says it is over.  That seems unlikely. The Democrat effort here seems to be to strike at the president through his mask, in this case Kavanaugh. Blumenthal, it should be noted, pledged to vote against the Kavanaugh nomination even before he was nominated by Trump to succeed Justice Kennedy on the high court. In fact, Blumenthal was opposed to any of the candidates whose names appeared on a list of acceptable candidates supplied to the President by The Heritage Foundation, which noted in a September 2016 article, “Trump’s list of 11 potential justices includes five suggestions that had appeared in a commentary from The Heritage Foundation’s John Malcolm, director of the Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies and the Ed Gilbertson and Sherry Lindberg Gilbertson senior legal fellows, first published in March.”

Tuesday, October 02, 2018

Lamont And Stefanowski: Questions Unasked, Issues Unexamined

Hillary Clinton, who lost the presidential election to current U.S. President Donald Trump, has been effectively sidelined as a national leader of the Democrat Party. Clinton, whose emails the Chinese were reading in real time when as Secretary of State she typed them out on an unsecured private server, likely will not make an appearance in Connecticut as a supporter of Democrat gubernatorial hopeful Ned Lamont.

But all is not lost. Lamont, running against Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Stefanowski, has received a fulsome endorsement from former President Barack Obama, whose political star still twinkles in the dark heavens.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Blumenthal’s Glass House

"Hypocrisy is a tribute vice pays to virtue,” said La Rochefoucauld. The hypocrite who hypocritically says one thing yet does the opposite is paying a tribute to virtue because deep down he knows what is right, though he lacks the moral fortitude to act upon it. There likely is a Latin translation floating around somewhere; moral admonitions sound so much better in Latin.

U.S. Senator Dick Blumenthal used an unfortunate Latin expression in questioning Supreme Court prospect – over Blumenthal’s dead body! – Brett Kavanaugh.  He asked Kavanaugh, whose repute now lies in  tatters  thanks to a triumvirate of leading Senate muckrakers --  Blumenthal, Dianne Feinstein and Chuck Schumer -- Kavanaugh was familiar with the Latin phrase “Falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus,” a rough translation of which is: “False in one thing, false in all things.” The implication is that if one misrepresents objective reality even once, everything one has said previously is false; indeed, everything one may say AFTER the presumed falsehood is also false.

Friday, September 28, 2018

The Science Of Progressive Morality

In a recent editorial, the members of the editorial board of the Hartford Courant profess astonishment because – I am quoting from “End Harassment At The Capitol” -- “It is almost incomprehensible that legislators in this state, known for its progressive policies, fail to adequately police their own and ensure that the halls of the Capitol are safe places for everyone.”

The editorial makes reference to a “survey conducted by the Office of Legislative Management" that shows – again I am quoting from the editorial – “Eighty six people who work in the state’s General Assembly said a legislator had sexually harassed them in a way that created a hostile work environment. Another 15 [per cent] said the harassment involved a quid pro quo for sexual conduct.”

They should not have been astonished, because editorial page editors are grown-ups who should understand that Eros is no respecter of ideologies. Both conservatives and progressives sometimes yield to what moral philosophers used to call the “sins of the flesh.” In our secular age, we’ve abandoned the whole notion of sin, partly because it is a religious concept, and progressives have progressed far beyond the boundaries of outworn religious doctrine, which they find illiberal and inhibiting. Harvard and Yale may still have chairs in moral philosophy, but the current science is not what it was when the subject was attached by a pedagogical umbilical cord to theology, once known as the queen of the sciences. In any case, most editorials are not written by moral philosophers.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Tech Sergeant John Chapman, Hero

I never had the pleasure of meeting Tech Sergeant John Chapman or his brave mother, who was featured in a short video, a loving remembrance of her son, sometime after the country graced itself by awarding to Chapman the Medal of Honor.  

We do however share a town: Windsor Locks, a mill town with a characteristic one-sided Main Street, a canal that flows parallel to the Connecticut River, full of perch and snappers in the heat of July. Chapman’s mother says in the video her son was a little Huck-Finnish growing up in Windsor Locks – nothing too serious, but there was a playful and sometimes mischievous spirit in the recent Medal of Honor recipient. When you live by a sun-spangled river and you are a boy in a town in which all eyes lovingly spy you out, Huck lives and breathes in you.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Blumenthal And The New Morality

“There are a dozen views about everything until you know the answer. Then there's never more than one” ― C.S. Lewis, That Hideous Strength

Morality through the ages has always been an OK-Not-OK proposition. Some things were just not to be suffered gladly and, before the ascendancy of the new morality, it generally had been agreed that society had a moral obligation to impose sanctions on persistent cultural deviants. This proposition was heartily rejected by the sons and daughters of the Woodstock Generation, some of whose adherents are now pontificating from the hallowed halls of the U.S. Congress.

In connection with the presumed manifold sins of prospective U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, one longs for a voice rising above clamorous moral maenads in the Democrat Party – saints Schumer, Blumenthal and Feinstein, U.S. Senators all – “Let he  ( and, to be fair, she) who is without sin cast the first stone.” It is impossible at this point to tell whether any of Kavanagh’s accusers are “without sin,” chiefly because New Yorker magazine reporter Ronan Farrell has not yet searched the backgrounds – going back more than 30 years – of Kavanaugh’s accusers.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

The Trump Business Bump In Connecticut

Some time ago, a Connecticut Trumpeter confessed to this political writer that he had been having a recurrent nightmare.

Military procurements during the Obama administration have been slender. Connecticut is still referred to in some corners as “the provision state” because, since the Revolutionary War, Connecticut has provided the national military with provisions. It continues to do so; Pratt&Whitney, Electric Boat and Sikorsky are very much going concerns.

Obama’s military budget was considerably more modest than Trump’s, as the President never tires of reminding the country. Dollars spent on the military are, to no one’s surprise, good for Connecticut. Federal dollars spent on military procurements produce Connecticut jobs, which produce funds that replenish the state’s treasury -- all good, all the time.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Malloy’s Last Gasps, The Barnes Boodle

the banner headlines on Tom Dudchik’s  “Capitol Report” read, in screaming text.

“Capitol Report” is an aggregator site much frequented by Connecticut politicians and state political watchers that retails important stories. The lede to the featured Hartford Courant story read, “The state Bond Commission will meet Thursday to vote on borrowing hundreds of millions of dollars to finance projects around the state, and the potential for a bonanza of funding for Hartford.”

Friday, September 14, 2018

The New Joe McCarthy Democrats

What to make of Senator Dianne Feinstein’s most recent referral to the FBI? Feinstein has said, according to CNN, "’I have received information from an individual concerning the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court,’ Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, said in a statement. ‘That individual strongly requested confidentiality, declined to come forward or press the matter further, and I have honored that decision. I have, however, referred the matter to federal investigative authorities,’ she added.”

There was not much “there” there in Feinstein’s media release. The “matter,” according to other reports, concerns alleged inappropriate behavior on the part of Kavanaugh when he was in high school; whether a freshman, average age 14, or a senior we are not told. It’s a juicy tidbit, particularly in the era of me-tooism, but the tidbit is too little and perhaps too artificially enticing.