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Showing posts from January, 2007

Dodd, On The Stump In New Hampshire

On the political stump in Dover, New Hampshire, US Sen. Chris Dodd , running for the presidency, declined to give a stump speech and instead took questions from the crowd. Concerning President Bush’s terms in office, Dodd said, “"We've been on six years of on-the-job training and look where we are." And later he asked rhetorically, “How are we losing a public relations battle with Hugo Chavez?" Dodd gave no hint to the largely admiring crowd what he would do as president to win the public relations battle with Venezuela’s increasingly leftist dictator. Following a path well worn by the ailing Fidel Castro, Chavez recently warned his opposition in Venezuela that he plans to nationalize the oil industry. While Bush slept, Daniel Ortega, running on a non-progressive pro-Catholic platform, became president of Nicaragua. As previously noted here and elsewhere , Dodd has had valuable experience negotiating with the Ortega brothers in that war swept country. When a vote

Plan B, The Courant Panics

This is a commentary on an editorial that recently appeared in the Hartford Courant under the title, “Plan B Can’t Wait.” Some data, here provided in italics, was not included in the editorial. Up to 8 percent of sexually assaulted women in the United States become pregnant with the assailant's child. Some undoubtedly do so because hospitals fail to help them in time. The consequences can be devastating. And some undoubtedly do because they choose not to avail themselves of hospital services. What is the breakdown? Rape counselors have documented widespread negligence in Connecticut hospitals when it comes to making emergency contraception available to victims of sexual assault. Of the negligent hospitals, what percentage are non-Catholic? Connecticut Sexual Assault Crisis Services counselors who accompanied rape victims to hospitals in the first half of 2006 say that 40 percent of them were offered too little or none of the so-called Plan B drug. That figure, in the futur

Blumenthal’s Quick Fix Is No Fix

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal’s quick fix solution to soaring energy prices – impose a “windfall” profits tax on the greedy captains of the energy industry – will not fix the problem. His pseudo-solution to high energy prices in Connecticut -- caused by an insufficient energy transmission system and the absence of competition in the energy market – is likely to worsen the problem in the long run. The powerful Speaker of the House of Representative, Jim Amann, so far has resisted the tune piped by Blumenthal. He may have been fully awake in his high school Economics 101 class when the teacher explained that companies do not pay taxes – not even taxes labeled, for the edification of the general public, “windfall profit taxes.” Companies are tax collectors not tax payers. If you demand they pay a windfall profits tax, they will collect the tax from consumers in the form of higher prices charged for their product. All business taxes result in higher prices or – when they are state

McEnroe Starts the Great Debate

A threatened veto – no matter the bill – is always an invitation to the opposition to strut their views, which will have no live consequences because a veto is, among other things, a prophylactic that prevents the germination of consequences. Therefore, a pre-announced veto by Rell on bills to legalize the marriage of gays is a most welcomed opportunity for the opposition to ventilate their views and snag a few votes from gays and their supporters. Though the veto makes winning on the issue unlikely rather than impossible– the Democrats do, after all, have a veto proof margin in the legislature -- the supporters of the vetoed measure have everything to win and nothing to loose. The likelihood of another bill legalizing marriage for gays has re-opened the debate on gay marriage. Talk show host and columnist Colin McEnroe was first out of the gate in support of gay marriage. A Yale graduate and an Illuminati, McEnroe advances a compelling argument that might serve to open a reasonable

The New McCarthyites

“One of the great sorrows of modern public life in Connecticut is the way it discolors the otherwise spotless” – Colin McEnroe McEnroe was referring to Leonard Boyle, the current commissioner of The Department of Public Safety, but he might easily have been talking about former state police Maj. Gregory Senick , an apparently spotless servant of the people whose reputation was discolored by an overzealous prosecution, while the paper McEnroe writes for, the Hartford Courant, spurred on the prosecutorial harpies. McEnroe’s comment is worth quoting in full: “One of the great sorrows of modern public life in Connecticut is the way it discolors the otherwise spotless. I have never heard a bad word said about Leonard Boyle, but the actions of his department now make him look like the head of the secret poice (sic). In my one conversation with Boyle, he semed (sic) like a stand-up guy. “Now he's apparently shopping his resume around. As you can see, the Moodygate story sticks to him

Obama vs Hillary

The slinging of mud has already begun in the campaign for president. Some suspect Hillary has dirt on her fingers. "An investigation of Mr. Obama by political opponents within the Democratic Party has discovered that Mr. Obama was raised as a Muslim by his stepfather in Indonesia. Sources close to the background check, which has not yet been released, said Mr. Obama, 45, spent at least four years in a so-called Madrassa, or Muslim seminary, in Indonesia."

When “Can’t” Means “Can”

The headline on the Political Money Line story ran, “Sen. Dodd Not To Run for Re-Election In 2010, Uses PAC to Buy NH and IA Voter Files.” And the story, unaccountably, was not followed by the usual scurrying for position that would attend the announcement by a multi-term US senator that he does not intend to run for his seat when his term expires. Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, presently in charge of Dodd’s presidential campaign in Connecticut, who has declined several times to run for governor because, it had been rumored, he really was interested in being a US senator, did not prematurely leap in front of the cameras to announce his availability, and Kevin Sullivan, once a heartbeat away from the governor’s mansion but now in semi-retirement, bit his tongue. But really “Dodd Not To Run For Re-Election In 2010,” No kidding! Sup with that? The morning’s paper explained it all: The shocking announcement sent to the Federal Election Commission by Dodd’s lawyer was just a neces

Always The Bridesmaid...

First Sen. Chris Dodd, now running for president, announced the event on the Don Imus show; then he gave several interviews in Washington DC, the senator’s theatre of operation, where the anti-President George Bush war room is located; then he went on the stump in Iowa and South Carolina where, along with congressional pal Sen. Joe Biden, he called upon the citizens of that great state to remove the confederate flag, now on display within sight of the capital building, to a museum of their choosing, where it belongs; then he went back to base camp in Washington DC to hobble the efforts of the president to raise troop levels in Iraq, though he has not yet demanded that Bush be removed to a museum; and finally – ta’da, a flourish of trumpets please! – the tribunes of the people have reported that Dodd will on Friday, Jan. 18 – mark it on your calendars -- return to his home state to tell the good old boys that he is running for president. A little late, grumbled the Hartford Courant’s ch

Comments On A Speech Delivered By Senator Chris Dodd To The Council On Foreign Relations, October 16, 2006

Dodd’s speech , a little outdated since he has modified his opinions several times since, was titled, “Moral Authority in the 21st Century: Lessons from Nuremberg.” During the past few weeks, Dodd's position on Iraq has evolved to meet changes in president Bush's strategy. He has, variously, agreed to increases in troop levels, and most recently proposed a bill that would restrict the president from increasing troop levels in Iraq. “In a time of war, I have come to our Council today to speak about peace. “Not the kind of peace that is merely the absence of armed conflict. “Not the uneasy and uncertain peace of adversaries warily eying each other over material and philosophical barricades. “Certainly not the false peace of slogans emblazoned on naval warships.” NB But it was precisely the naval warships of World War II, some of which were emblazoned with slogans, and aircraft also emblazoned with war-talk that brought a lasting peace to Europe. “Rather, I speak of a

Subversion in the Court

There’s something to be said for the vigorous application of bad laws; it’s the best way to get rid of them. The anti- capital punishment forces here in Connecticut want state prosecutors to develop a standard for the prosecution of those who commit capital felonies. Once the standard is established, it must be uniformly applied by all prosecutors in the state. A prosecution in which the standard is not uniformly applied then may be contested in court as being selective and falling outside the governing rule, providing plaintiffs accused of capital felonies with yet another useful arrow in their already crowded quiver. Should Connecticut appellate courts agree with those now arguing that the absence of a standard for prosecution in capital felony cases is on its face unconstitutional, one need not argue the guilt or innocence of the murderer; one need only show that a prosecutor in a different district unconnected with the case had failed to prosecute in a similar instance. A consis

Arms And The Man

According to a report in the Washington Times , The Bush administration has imposed economic sanctions against Russia, China and North Korea for supplying missiles and weapons to Iran and Syria. Senator and soon to be President Chris Dodd visited Syria recently where -- we hope -- he castigated Bashir Assad about supplying munitions that are killing American troops and innocent civilians in Iraq. The Bush administration is imposing economic sanctions on Chinese, Russian and North Korean companies for selling missiles and weapons goods to Iran and Syria, administration officials said. The sanctions were imposed earlier this week on three Chinese state-run companies, three Russian firms and a North Korean mining company under a 2000 arms proliferation law that was renamed Iran and Syria Nonproliferation Act in 2005. The sanctions ban U.S. government business and support to the companies for two years and block U.S. firms from selling them items that require export licenses. They a

The “Ifs Ands And Buts” Of Dodd’s Presidential Campaign

This is no joke. US Sen. Chris Dodd announced his bid for the White House, according to a report in the Hartford Courant , “on the Don Imus radio show.” Dodd's Connecticut campaign will feature the ubiquitous Attorney General Richard Blumenthal as his state chairman, and Rep. Rosa DeLauro, once Dodd’s Chief of Staff, will serve as the senator’s national co-chairman – further proof, if any were necessary, that incumbent politicians now have become petite political parties. Is it not possible to recruit the state Democrat Party chairman to serve in the role assigned to Blumenthal, who certainly is not in need of further press coverage? Dodd, who has about $5 million in his campaign kitty, is on the campaign road to Iowa and South Carolina. One way to win political support in such important campaign states is to purchase it, and $5 million will come in handy for this purpose. The Journal Inquirer of Manchester earlier reported that Dodd has spread his largess around in local races

The High Price of Idiocy

Is energy a necessity or a commodity? It’s both. It’s a necessary commodity. Food and clothing are also necessary commodities. People ask this question because they feel that if for some reason the free market is unable to provide an indispensable commodity, the necessity still must be answered, usually by government. Energy, expensive here in the Northeast for a variety of reasons, does not yet fall into this category, though deregulation, by contributing to a surge in price, has nudged it in that direction. The factors affecting a rise in energy costs are more complex than we are given to understand by people interested in demonologizing the energy industry. Energy is a product delivered through transmission lines the way, say, oranges and apples are delivered to grocery stores by trucks using highways, which serve as a distribution system. Given a competitive market, the price of these commodities may be lowered through healthy competition; this was the expectation for energy

How to Think About the War

Herbert Meyer’s essay on the Iraq war, first printed in The American Thinker , has been circulating in Canada and Europe. December 27, 2006 How to Think About the War By Herbert E. Meyer Whether we are winning or losing in Iraq is open to debate, but it's clear that our national conversation about the war has begun to fail. Today our elected leaders, our most influential commentators, and even ordinary Americans chatting among themselves at work or at their dinner tables, have begun to repeat their lines like wind-up dolls. All of them, and all of us, are saying the same things over and over again; what started as a conversation has become a shouting match. And when everyone is on "transmit" - but never on "receive" - we cannot hear and so we cannot learn. And if we cannot learn, we've stopped thinking. We need to start all over again to think about the war, and we mustn't be afraid. After all, we do this with our computers all the time. When a prog

The Democrat Plans in Iraq

Jason Horowitz asks in the New York Observer what do the Democrats propose to do in Iraq now that they have seized effective control of the legislature? Some of the answers are surprising “It’s a very different calculus, meanwhile, for those Democrats harboring hopes of capturing the White House in 2008. As the killing in Baghdad intensifies—and almost everyone believes that it will continue to do so—some potential candidates are trying to articulate coherent positions now. They understand that this issue isn’t simply going to disappear in the next two years, and they argue that opposition alone doesn’t constitute a credible foreign-policy position. “‘The question is, are you just going to fold up and leave regardless of the situation on the ground, or can you, through diplomacy, try and craft a more favorable exit?’ said Gen. Wesley Clark, one likely Presidential nominee. ‘My argument is that you can.’ “General Clark has a unique perspective among prospective candidates. He acte