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Covid Gubernatorial Authority, The Beginning Of The End?

Lamont, Biden and Hayes There are some reasons to believe that the contra-constitutional authority assumed by governors across the nation during a now ebbing Coronavirus pandemic is itself beginning to ebb as legislatures reassert their suspended constitutional powers and obligations. Connecticut, as usual, has lagged behind other states. Kentucky Republicans last January, according to a piece in Politico , kneecapped “Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear. They dropped legislation in January that placed new limits on the governor’s emergency executive powers, quickly passed the bill, overrode his veto and then fought him in court… In the months that have followed, lawmakers across the country — from Maine to California, Oregon to Florida — have proposed and, in many cases, passed similar measures to curtail the sweeping powers bestowed on their state executives.” Woke lawmakers, according to Politico, “are only now realizing how much power they ceded to the executive — and are attempting
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Letters From Prison

The two following letters were written by Brent McCall, co-author along with Michael Liebowitz of “ Down the Rabbit Hole: How the Cultureof Corrections Encourages Crime .” Both concern what prisoners in New York call “clocksuckers,” prison employees who engage in stretching their paychecks at the expense of taxpayers.    When Does Government Management Become A Crime?   You’ve probably heard that Connecticut’s prison population is the lowest it has been in 30 years. Much less touted by the powers that be is that staffing levels within the Department of Corrections (DOC) remain at record highs. There are currently somewhere in the neighborhood of 6,000 Corrections employees guarding less than 9,000 prisoners, And at a cost of more than half as billion dollars a year to run the state’s prison system, it’s hard to imagine how such staffing levels may be justified. Even when they cannot be justified, DOC employees readily conspire to make it look like they can. This occurred rece

Wasted Crises

President Obama’s chief of staff Rahm Emanuel famously said in 2008, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. I mean, it’s an opportunity to do things that you think you could not do before.” And, supposing there is no obvious crisis, it is always possible for an inventive politician to spin one from his or her teeming imagination. The more horrific the imagined crisis, the greater the opportunity to do things that could not be done before it had been loosed upon the world. The corollary to this piece of stupidity involves ignoring serious crises, easily done if you can call upon a subservient media to bury them. Much of the media is anxious to do business with the prevailing power and, for this reason, too few in the media are contrarians. To find a vigorous American contrarian, we have to go all the way back to Mark Twain, who said politicians were like babies: both politicians and babies soil their diapers often, which have to be changed as often, “and for the same rea

Another Shooting In Hartford

Malcolm X Certain social divisions – that between city and suburb, for instance – are semi-permanent, if not permanent. People in cities sometimes believe that this division is inauthentic, much too artful, and harmful. Are we not all brothers and sisters under the skin? A 3 year old baby in Harford has died in a shooting incident. Surely, city and suburb can huddle around the casket and shed tears of sympathy and remorse. But is sympathy enough? A poet wrote a poem in the 17th century titled “Love is enough.” It was reviewed by Charles Lamb, perhaps the most prominent social critic of his day, in a single spare line: “No, it isn’t,” Lamb wrote. The 3 year old baby shot in Hartford, Randell Tarez Jones, is referred to by  our media   as “the unintended victim of a drive-by shooting.” That descriptor is partly correct. We know little of the shooter so far. He stole a car in Windsor Locks, opened fire a few days later on a car in Hartford containing a mother and her three children

The Crisis Elsewhere And Cheap Grace In Connecticut

Mayor Florsheim The crisis at the border has now officially become “a border crisis.” A story in Hartford paper boldly labels it as such: “Lamont was personally asked by Vice President Kamala Harris recently if Connecticut could provide space for some of the thousands of children who are being kept in detention centers along the Texas border after fleeing from their Central American countries. Their numbers have increased as the federal government is facing a border crisis (emphasis mine).” “Crisis” is not a term often found waltzing around with the new administration of President Joe Biden. But it has become impossible in recent days for Friends Of Biden (FOBs) to overlook the massive numbers of illegal – shall we, for once, call things by their right names? --   immigrants that have poured over the US border after Biden, a few weeks into his presidency, opened the door to illegal immigration while telling the huddled masses yearning to breathe free in Honduras, Guatemala and Mexi

Matt Blumenthal And Radical Jury Reform

The state of Connecticut has a new Blumenthal on its block, Stamford State Representative Matt Blumenthal, son of U.S. Senator Dick Blumenthal. Before Dick Blumenthal hopped into the Senate, he was for two decades Connecticut’s crusading Attorney General. Along with his predecessor, former Attorney General Joe Lieberman, who also hopped from the Attorney General's office into the U.S. Senate, Dick Blumenthal changed the nature of the office. Historically, the mission of the office was a narrow one: The attorney General, known in colonial days as The King’s Lawyer, was to represent the executive office and state agencies when called to court. With a little judicial jujitsu, Lieberman and Blumenthal were able to add to the initial mission a new function: the office has now become a prosecutorial consumer protection agency for the people of Connecticut. Like his father, Matt Blumenthal is a progressive reformer. By definition, a reformer is anyone who changes the forms of things a

Brief Definitions of Political Terms for the Politically Distressed

Despite assurances from deconstructionists – read, destructionists and nihilists – that the world and everything in it is devoid of fixed meaning, dictionaries are available to which the confused and befuddled may repair for enlightenment. Offered below, with a caveat, are some few brief definitions of postmodern – read, confusing – political terms. To be wide awake and politically active in the postmodern 21 st century is to be confused much of the time. The caveat is this: Politicians suspect, correctly, that the bulk of their constituents are much too busy making a living in hard times to press to their eyes jewelers' loops with which they may closely examine bills streaming through legislatures or, just as fraudulent, self-serving pronouncements issuing from ad-men politicians. For this reason, politicians are careful in naming their bills, and the names, many of them designed to appeal to emotions rubbed raw – “American Rescue Plan Act of 2021”, “For the People Act of 2