Skip to main content

Blumenthal as Caligula

Gore Vidal, who was friendly with the Kennedy family, once was asked whether he was disturbed by Edward Kennedy’s long reign as senator of Masachussetts. Not at all, said Vidal -- author of “Myra Brekinridge/Myron-Myron", whose heroine, sort of, was a transvestite and “Imperial America: Reflections on the United States of Amnesia", as well as a host of other well received books on various topics – every state “should have at least one Caligula.”

Connecticut’s Caligula may be Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, whose fondest wish – to save the world by suit – was granted, according to a story in the Hartford Courant, a day after Thanksgiving, when the Supreme Court of the United States agreed to hear a suit championed by Blumenthal and other attorney’s general to force the Environmental Protection Agency to classify CO{-2} as a hazardous emission.

On the local front, according to the paper, “…a second coalition case known as Connecticut vs. American Electric Power seeks to force five of the nation's largest power-generating companies to begin reducing their CO{-2} emissions. Now pending before the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals in New York, it argues that CO{-2} constitutes a harmful 'public nuisance' under common law.”

Blumenthal is quoted in the story as saying, “The most difficult question for me is not whether CO{-2} causes global warming and not whether global warming is harmful ... but what is the best way to stop global warming.”

It’s not the science of pollution that matters; the suit’s the thing. And if energy prices rise as a result of Blumenthal's efforts -- well, they rise.

In the wacky world of Connecticut politics, Blumenthal's suit should give a boost to Democrat efforts to lower energy costs, once a major pillar of John DeStefano's gubernatorial campaign. It all seems so long ago.

On September 13, Blumenthal met on the political stump with then Democrat gubernatorial John DeStefano and Waterbury Mayor Michael Jarjura to protest higher energy costs.

"Connecticut is mired in an energy crisis,” DeStefano cried out at Waterbury’s Town Hall. “It already has the highest rates in the nation, squeezing families and costing us jobs. While electric rates are soaring, Gov. Rell has not shown the leadership or a plan to reduce costs. As Governor, I would work with the legislature to lower rates for consumer and families by imposing a windfall profits tax, making Connecticut a national leader in conservation and putting in place a series of detailed measure to lower our energy costs.”

DeStefano vowed, “As Governor, I would immediately return $300 million to Connecticut's families and $40 million to businesses by imposing a windfall profits tax on electric generators."

Juggling the revenue and expenditure ledgers of business in the private or quasi public marketplace is a tricky affair, where taxes are treated as part of business costs. The costs of taxes are usually recovered through price increases. Both litigation costs occasioned by Blumenthal’s suits and tax costs occasioned by DeStefano’s windfall profits penalty usually would be recovered by businesses through an increase in the product price. Should such increases be made impossible, the product tends to disappear, except in markets that allow less punishing regulation.

There is one exception to this general rule. In socialist countries like Venezuela, where energy production is state owned, government can set the price of energy; but neither Blumenthal nor DeStefano have proposed the nationalization of energy producers.

Under the present circumstances, Blumenthal gets to have his cake and eat it too. He is partially responsible for high energy costs occasioned by litigation and regulation -- and yet he is permitted to pose before the public as a knight on a white horse fighting the greedy captains of energy who want to bilk the public and stuff their pillows with ill-gotten profits.

Energy production in the Northeast has not been properly deregulated; it would be truer to say that it has become a publicly regulated industry that borders on a monopoly, which is why it is so easily manipulated by legislators and attorneys general. The quickest way to create a quasi-monopoly in a quasi-free marketplace is to produce through government regulation a forbidding economy that will preserve old inefficient businesses and prevent new businesses from entering the marketplace on a level playing field.

Not a bad job – if you can get it from Blumenthal.


Anonymous said…
Dear Don,

Could you please provide a link to the last time any newspaper published something you wrote?
Don Pesci said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Don Pesci said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Don Pesci said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Don Pesci said…
The most recent, "Dodd Takes Takes Road More Traveled," was published in the Waterbury Republican American. Here is a site that may be helpful, though not all of the columns are published on newspaper web sites. The Torrington Register Citizen has frequently published the columns, though it is not represented in this listing. The listing shows more than 400 of my columns. It might be profitable for you to contact The Norwalk paper and also the New London Day. Suggest you contact librarians at the papers mentioned above if you need further help.
10:23 AM
Don Pesci said…

More recently, this one appeared in The Day of New London:
Anonymous said…
Great post.

I am appalled that my tax dollars are being spent in an attempt to regulate the very gas I exhale.

I am sorely tempted to get AG Blumenthal a copy of Michael Crichton's "State of Fear" as an anonymous Christmas present.
Don Pesci said…

The following column "GOP Left With No Place To Go" was printed in the Connecticut Post on Sunday, Nov. 26. This concludes my research on your behalf. I trust your question has been answered.

Popular posts from this blog

The Blumenthal Burisma Connection

Steve Hilton, a Fox News commentator who over the weekend had connected some Burisma corruption dots, had this to say about Connecticut U.S. Senator Dick Blumenthal’s association with the tangled knot of corruption in Ukraine: “We cross-referenced the Senate co-sponsors of Ed Markey's Ukraine gas bill with the list of Democrats whom Burisma lobbyist, David Leiter, routinely gave money to and found another one -- one of the most sanctimonious of them all, actually -- Sen. Richard Blumenthal."

Dave Walker, Turning Around The Misery Index

Dave Walker, who is running for Lieutenant Governor on the Republican Party ticket, is recognized by most credible political observers as perhaps the most over qualified candidate for Lieutenant Governor in state history.
He is a member of the Accounting Hall of Fame and for ten years was the Comptroller General of the United States. When Mr. Walker talks about budgets, financing and pension viability, people listen.
Mr. Walker is also attuned to fine nuances in political campaigning. He is not running for governor, he says, because he had moved to Connecticut only four years ago and wishes to respect the political pecking order. Very few people in the state think that, were he governor, Mr. Walker would know less about the finance side of government than his budget chief.

Murphy Stumbles

U.S. Senator Chris Murphy has been roughly cuffed by some news outlets, but not by Vox, which published on April 16 a worshipful article on Connecticut’s Junior Senator, “The Senator of State: How Connecticut’s Chris Murphy, a rising Democratic star, would run the world.”
On April 15, The Federalist mentioned Murphy in an article entitled “Sen. Chris Murphy: China And The World Health Organization Did Nothing Wrong. The lede was a blow to Murphy’s solar plexus: “Democratic Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy exonerated China of any wrongdoing over the global pandemic stemming from the novel Wuhan coronavirus on Tuesday.
“’The reason that we’re in the crisis that we are today is not because of anything that China did, is not because of anything the WHO [World Health Organization] did,’ said Murphy during a prime-time interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper.”