Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Fishwrap

Santa Claus Is Coming To Town. Liberal heartthrob Ned Lamont, the Greenwich millionaire who, hand in hand with agents of Lowell Weicker, tried and failed to off Sen. Joe Lieberman, has written in The Hartford Courant a “Recovery” opinion that contains the following sentiment: “But every state is lining up to sit on the lap of the federal Santa Claus and say whether they've been naughty or nice. So, Connecticut better be prepared to explain how our projects can put people to work in year one, how they make us more competitive in the long term, and how we can pay our share of the cost.” The subliminal message of Lamont’s lucubration is: “We’re broke, let’s spend money in the expectation of a gift from Santa.” Jodi Rell sat on Santa’s lap during this year’s governor’s conference and found it cushy. The occasion was celebrated in a Courant editorial: “Mr. Obama singled out Republican governors, whose number includes Mrs. Rell, in extending ‘the hand of friendship’ on Tuesday. His Lincolnesque mercy is noble but also practical: To punish his political enemies would wound his friends as well. Connecticut's governor may be Republican, but this state went solidly blue in November's presidential election.” In a new, book Courant columnist Susan Campbell continues to re-invent fundamentalism, though the ritualistic denunciations of the creed – too anti-feminist, too ridgid, too unbelievably silly – do not carry the oomph of a Christopher Hitchens blast. Hitchens is the atheist who wrote a book on Mother Teresa called “The Missionary Position,” though the fiery atheist preacher warmed to her at last when he discovered that, passing through a dark night of the soul, she had serious doubts about her faith. The French are being French again. President of France Nicholas Sarkozy, a gigantic personality in a diminutive body and said by some to be suffering from a Napoleonic complex, first ordered his energy czar to analyze the usefulness of pollution free electric cars and then – when the report did not affirm environmental prejudices – yanked it from publication. Rod Blagojevich (pronounced Rod), the erstwhile governor of Chicago – not, as some people suppose the most corrupt state in the union – continues to suffer from the opposite of media neglect. The governor – He could have been the Serbian Obama – has multiple problems. A prosecutor is breathing down his neck; friendly relations with the Obama camp appear to have suffered a reversal; and a perhaps prejudicial press has put him into an enclosure that the French (see Sarkozy above) used to call “the little ease,” a cell exquisitely fashioned in such a way that the occupant can neither stand nor sit nor lay down. Blagojevich (pronounced Rod), it is said by prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, was in the process of auctioning off President elect Barack Obama vacant seat in the US senate in return for the usual favors when his designs were interrupted by Fitzgerald, who had caught the governor in a recording that he generously shared with the media. The governor is now being called upon to resign, but there is a hitch. He does not wish to resign. What to do? He can be impeached, but that takes awhile, and it is feared the governor, in the meanwhile, may possibly hire the now esteemed professor and flag stomper Bill Ayres to blow up some buildings and off the pigs who are tormenting him. This seems a little hysterical. Possibly the anti-Blagojevich (pronounced Rod) forces are concerned that the governor may make a judicious choice in his appointment for President elect Obama’s seat and so bring to naught the charges against him. We do not pretend familiarity with the Byzantine ways of Chicago politics, but insist, along with Lamont, that Santa Claus is not implicated in the treachery. US Rep. Chris Shays is not certain that there is life after congressional death, but he still hopes Santa will make a spot for him in the Obama administration. John Rowland appeared on the Mike Huckabee show and made oceans of sense.

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