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Showing posts from 2009

Have A Boring New Year

Now that George Bush has ridden off into the sunset – long ago actually, despite occasional attempts to call him back for invidious rhetorical purposes – the goofey left finds itself wandering forlorn amid the empty centuries.

Everyone will miss scenes like this:

But time rolls on in its implacable course, and a New Year stretches out before us.

So, good-bye to all that. Maureen Dowd, for instance, has not written a trenchant piece on the presidency since you-know-who vacated the premises. Gary Trudeau sleeps.  Leftist brains are rusting in their brain pans from sea to shining sea.

The left has nothing to say about the current you-know-who.


All we have to look forward to is the complete and fatal economic collapse of the country – not, from the point of view of the amusing actors in the video above, that there’s anything wrong with that.

Hello Utopia.

And, as we approach the new decade, a bit of good news for everyone but the fake scientists in East Anglia and Al Gore: “…the ai…

Dodd Slashes Airport Security Funds For Friendly Firemen

Mark Hemmingway of the Washington Examiner tells us that Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd in July proposed an amendment that moved $4,500,000 from airport security to firefighters, a favorite constituency. The firefighter’s union backed the senator during his failed presidential bid in Iowa.

This is the text of the Dodd amendment:

"(Purpose: To provide additional funds for FIRE grants under section 33 of the Federal FirePrevention and Control Act of 1974)
          "On page 77, between lines 16 and 17, insert the following:
"SEC. X (a) The amount appropriated under the heading "firefighter assistance grants'' under the heading "Federal Emergency Management Agency'' under by title III for necessary expenses for programs authorized by the Federal Fire Prevention and Control Act of 1974 is increased by $10,000,000 for necessary expenses to carry out the programs authorized under section 33 of that Act (15 U.S.C. 2229).

"(b) The total amount of approp…

Fiat Is A Car: A Brief History Of the Beginning Of The 21st Century

We are all a bit stupid about the economy. That is because economics really is the dismal science -- except for two groups of people: Ron Paulites, along with Andrew Jackson, the natural enemies of fiat money, and George Sorosites, ambitious malefactors of great wealth who in this age of get rich quick schemes want to get even richer quicker.
Most of the rest of us fell asleep in economics class when the talk turned to inflation, deflation and fiat money.

We thought fiats were cars.

George Soros, the sugardaddy of the left best know as a short-buyer who broke the bank of England, and Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises, were wide awake in class. So was Peter Schiff, now running for the US Senate against too long-time incumbent Chris Dodd.

Von Mises, the author of “Human Action,” still the best economic book in our fragile Western world, died with empty pockets; Soros continues to rake in the dough. He will die a rich man, his mouth stuffed with dollars rather than earth, after the l…

The Hamsher Norquist Knuckle Sandwich

Jane Hamsher, the political femme fatal who ran on her site a picture of Sen. Joe Lieberman in blackface to help Greenwich millionaire Ned Lamont’s campaign, is attempting a little triangulation of her own now that President Barack Obama seems to have made common cause with the redundantly wealthy denizens of Wall Street.

She has combined with the decidedly non-progressive Grover Norquist to throw Rham Emanuel down the mineshaft. Emanuel is Obama's Disraeli. The Norquist/Hamsher combo is very unusual. Norquist is one of the best conservative-libertarian organizers on the planet. In fact, if the Republicans ever do regain the reigns of power in Washington, before the country is flat broke, it would be well if they allowed Norquist to form the entire government -- including the Supreme Court.

“If Obama/Rahm want to triangulate against progressives (and they do), they’re not the only ones who can make cause with people on the other side of the aisle. If that’s what it takes to shake …

We Are All Murthas Now

This is the year when many shameless congressional Democrats became U.S. Rep. John Murtha, the powerful Chairman of the House Appropriations Defense Committee and dispenser-in-chief of goodies. Any superfluous submarines that have come Connecticut’s way in the dying last days of the Bush administration have Murtha’s fingerprints all over them.

Rep. John Larson of Connecticut’s impregnable 1st District was a pioneer in this regard. Way back in April, the Journal Inquirer reported in a flashy first page story that Larson had struck up a very close friendship with the earmark king of Pennsylvania, then under scrutiny for the second time by the FBI.

The first time, FBI agents attempted to ensnare Murtha in a tit for tat scam involving wealthy Arab sheiks, FBI plants in disguise. One of the sheiks brought a briefcase full of cash with him, passed its fragrance under Murtha’s nose and begged favors of him.

Murtha suggested the money be laundered through his favorite charity, a constituent w…

It’s the Stupack Amendment, Stupid

“’They think I shouldn’t be expressing my views on this bill until they get a chance to try to sell me the language,’ Stupak told in an interview on Tuesday. ‘Well, I don’t need anyone to sell me the language. I can read it. I’ve seen it. I’ve worked with it. I know what it says. I don’t need to have a conference with the White House. I have the legislation in front of me here.’”

Apparently, no one from the Chicago Group surrounding President Barack Obama has yet made Stupack an offer he can’t refuse. His spine seems to be in good order: “We’re getting a lot of pressure not to say anything, to try to compromise this principle or belief. That’s just not us. We’re not going to do that. Members who voted for the Stupak language in the House – especially the Democrats, 64 Democrats that voted for it – feel very strongly about it. It’s been part of who we are, part of our make up. It’s the principle belief that we have. We are not just going to abandon it in the name of health …

This is what happened the week before Christmas:

The state budget – last fiscal year’s state budget – is about half a billion dollars in the red. A departing Gov. Jodi Rell called the legislature into session to make some serious cuts. The legislators returned to the Capitol: They came, they saw, they ran away. The legislature then called itself into session. Rell had presented it with a plan that called for semi-serious cuts. The legislature cut some tax cuts and reduced a $337 million deficit by about $12 million, according to a Courant story. This exhausted them, and even here quarrels arose on the floor when the Democrats proposed reducing expenditures for horses in the governor’s foot guard by about $77 thousand. Apparently, the horses do not belong to a union, and so the cutback was approved by Speaker of the House Chris Dovovan, the state's union flunky in the legislature. The governor asked the unions for further concessions. The unions said – no.The governor asked the legislature to make serious cuts. The legislature s…

Lincoln, McMahon, Simmons

The race goes on. Linda McMahon and Rob Simmons, both Republicans running against Sen. Chris Dodd, have gotten into a tiff over Abe Lincoln. McMahon had mentioned to a paper that Lincoln, he of the Gettysburg address, had been known for his wrestling prowess. For this she was pounced upon by the Simmons campaign:

"When President Lincoln grappled on the prairie he wasn't on steroids and drugs, he wasn't scripting Playboy models to strip their clothes off in the ring in front of children and he wasn't instructing fellow wrestlers to use razor blades to cut their heads open to draw blood. Linda McMahon and the WWE's brand of wrestling does all these things and we're quite sure Honest Abe would not approve.”
Linda McMahon was right about Abe Lincoln: He was famous in New Salem, a frontier village on the Sangamon River, for wrestling long before “The Little Giant,” Stephen Douglas, felt his grapple. And Rob Simmons is also right: There was no Playboy Magazine in Linc…

The Lieberman Narrative

Most of the opinion press outside the state reporting on Connecticut politicians is an echo chamber.

If someone from, say, the New York Observer wants the inside dope on Joe Lieberman – who, truthfully, is as predictable as the rising and setting of the sun – he will call one of his comrades in Connecticut’s press. That comrade will refer him to Bill Curry.

Curry, aggregating data on Lieberman from a dozen liberal sources, will say something like this: “I do believe that if he runs for re-election in Connecticut (in 2012), it will be as a Republican. He never loses the capacity to shock. It is just so contemptuous of the president, who let him back into the caucus and the chairmanship.”

Curry’s notion will be picked up by the local press, and it will be repeated in multiple stories.

This is the way narratives are made.

And a good narrative is the blade gleaming in the guillotine. Once a narrative gets into a liberal reporter’s head it is unshakable. It becomes the pivot point around w…

Lieberman The Liberal, A Reconsideration

Dana Milbank of the Washington Post actually ran the numbers and discovered – Surprise! – that Sen. Joe Lieberman is not polluted with conservativism:

“His ideology has not changed one bit, as measured by vote ratings. The American Conservative Union scored his conservatism an eight out of 100 in 2008, the same as Maryland's Ben Cardin (Obama scored a more conservative 17). His lifetime conservative rating is 16, and over the past five years he's actually been a slightly more liberal 8.2. Ratings by the liberal Americans for Democratic Action tell a similar tale, and a University of California at San Diego ranking through the end of July found him to be the 28th most liberal member of the Senate this year, tied with that conservative icon, Daniel Akaka of Hawaii.”
It may come as a shock both to the enemies of Lieberman and the friends of Obama – often, they are the same people – to find that Obama’s liberal ratings fall short of Lieberman’s.

In a recent interview, Lieberman brus…

ObamaCare Doubts

Sen. Mitch McConnell puts it in a nutshell:

“Americans are already outraged at the fact that Democrat leaders took their eyes off the ball. Rushing the process on a partisan line makes the situation even worse.

“Americans were told the purpose of reform was to reduce the cost of health care.

“Instead, Democrat leaders produced a $2.5 trillion, 2,074-page monstrosity that vastly expands government, raises taxes, raises premiums, and wrecks Medicare.

“And they want to rush this bill through by Christmas — one of the most significant, far-reaching pieces of legislation in U.S. history. They want to rush it.

“And here’s the most outrageous part: at the end of this rush, they want us to vote on a bill that no one outside the Majority Leader’s conference room has even seen.

“That’s right. The final bill we’ll vote on isn’t even the one we’ve had on the floor. It’s the deal Democrat leaders have been trying to work out in private.”

WSJ Pins Tail On Donkey Lamont

The Wall Street Journal thinks Ned Lamont is responsible for the Democrats difficulty in passing ObamaCare:

“If, after all this fuss, the Senate manages not to enact ObamaCare, one man we will have to thank for it is Ned Lamont. He's the liberal-left cable-TV executive who successfully challenged Joe Lieberman, Connecticut's junior senator, in the 2006 Democratic primary. Lieberman, taking advantage of the Nutmeg State's nutty election laws, ran as an independent in the general election and trounced Lamont.

“The Republicans didn't put up a serious candidate for the seat, so that if Lamont had not run, Lieberman would have coasted to re-election as a Democrat--and as a Democrat, he would have felt much greater pressure to back ObamaCare in its original version out of party loyalty. Instead he has emerged as a holdout against some of its worst provisions, and we can credit him with making the Senate bill unacceptable to the likes of Howard Dean (though we shall see if eno…

And In This Corner, Rosa DeLauro

What’s wrong with allowing people to buy into Medicare at the age of 50 or 55? Besides the fact that it is going bankrupt, is inefficient and can barely sustain its current population?” – “the chief,” a commentator on the blog site Connecticut Local Politics

“The chief” may or may not be a citizen represented in the U.S. House of representatives by John Larson, a Democratic Rep. from the impregnable 1st District or Rosa DeLauro of the 3rd District or embattled Sen. Chris Dodd, all of whom are frustrated by Sen. Joe Lieberman’s opposition to a public option in the health care bill and a provision that would extend Medicare benefits to beneficiaries who are 55 years of age and up.

It hardly matters at all what district “the chief” resides in; he is represented in the U.S. Congress by a delegation in both the House and the Senate that is wholly Democratic. And that delegation is marching in lockstep with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, who wants both a public option, leading down the…

The Laugh’s On You

There is a funny side to politics. Politico reportsKristin Davis, the Manhattan Madam who accommodated former New York Attorney General Elliot Spitzer’s sexual fantasies when his political rocket was in the ascendancy, is fully prepared to run against her former client should he decide to enter the Big Apple’s comptroller race. And Connecticut’s pro partial birth abortion advocate in the U.S. House of Representatives Rosa DeLauro feels that Sen. Joe Lieberman should face a run-off election owing to his stubborn opposition to President Barack Obama’s universal health care initiate. Of course, there is no provision in the U.S. Congress for run-off elections. But obviously DeLauro, who has locked horns with the pope and bishops united against partial birth abortion, feels about run-offs the way the great Russian author Fyodor Dostoyevsky felt about God when he said if there were no God, men would be forced to invent Him. The Connecticut General Assembly, led by Chris Donovan and Don Will…

Lieberman, The Independent

Over on the left, the discussion about Lieberman – when it is not outrageously wrongheaded – has taken its usual turn: The discussion has turned quickly from an attempt to answer the question “What are Lieberman’s reasons for opposing the recent grand plans of progressives in his party?” to the more easily answered question “What are Lieberman’s motives in doing so?” Answer from those on the left who prefer venting to thinking: The senator is entirely ego driven and shameless in his opposition because he is still smarting from a primary loss to Ned Lamont.

Progressives on the left, , hatchets at the ready, are predicting two things: 1) that Lieberman has now entered his end times, and 2) if the senator runs again, he can only do successfully on a Republican ticket, which is unlikely.

The shifting stream of history is the great unknown here. Progressive theorists, when they are not assuming their plans for the future will usher in a new utopia, are assuming that all else will remain th…

Day Thwacks Williams, Donovan

In a bone crunching editorial in The Day of New London on Sunday, President Pro Tem of the Senate Don Williams and Speaker of the House Chris Donovan are sent to the infirmary:

“No one in the Democratic leadership, it appears, wants to face the reality of a dramatic decrease in tax revenues tied to a prolonged recession. By all reports, the Democratic caucus cannot agree how to proceed, likely leading to inaction on Tuesday. Support and faith in Senate President Donald E. Williams Jr., D-Brooklyn, has severely eroded. House Speaker Christopher G. Donovan, D-Meriden, may have a stellar liberal record of supporting health care for the poor, children's programs and organized labor, but he seems ill-suited for a time that requires tough decisions that will harm some of those very constituencies.”
The Democratic controlled legislature is, The Day asserts “Frozen with fear when confronting a monster largely of its own making, the Democratic leadership in the General Assembly is readying t…

Dodd's Impending Retirement

U.S. Sen. Dodd is being urged, here in Connecticut and elsewhere, to surrender his seat to someone whose poll numbers are more favorable. Far left progressives in the state have made it no secret that they think Dodd has been so damaged by a persistent negative political narrative that he has become a place holder for other promising candidates. Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, the Hamlet of Greenwich, and Rep. Chris Murphy both have been mentioned as possible replacements.

Dodd, all along, has been stoutly defended by Colleen Flanagan, a state Democratic Party spokeswoman.

Replying to a beltway Cook Report that Dodd is “just too badly damaged to have a decent shot at getting re-elected, almost regardless of who wins the Republican nomination,” Flanagan sent out a press release:

"It's no secret what the Washington smart guys think about this race,'' she said in an email after the Courant asked for a comment.”But it just doesn't matter what they think. They do…

Richard Blumenthal: The Worst Attorney General In The United States

Two years ago, the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) awarded Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal a dubious distinction. Citing four categories – Dubious Dealings, Fabricating Law, AG Imperialism/Usurping Legislative Powers and Predatory Practices – Blumenthal was crowned “the worst attorney general in the United States.” He had some fierce competition: Eliot Spitzer, New York’s attorney general, had not yet been toppled from his hobby horse by consorting with prostitutes.

Among the categories not mentioned by CEI was the misuse of fraudulent affidavits to secure from judges ex parte seizures of assets. An ex parte proceeding permits judges to invest prosecutors with the authority to seize the assets of persons they are investigating -- without a hearing before a judge.

Two cases now wending their way through various courts, one involving a tea and herb vendor and the other a wood pellet distributor, graphically demonstrate Blumenthal’s abuse of ex parte attachments o…

Blumenthal: Follow The Bouncing Dollars

A splendidly written and researched story in Sunday’s Harford Courant by Josh Kovner and Jon Lender, demonstrates that the state’s attorney’s general office has become a money operation more interested in cash than justice.

The story calls into question a case prosecuted by Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, sometimes mentioned in press reports as a desirable Democratic candidate for governor or U.S. senator.

The owners of a Brookfield quarry, Rock Acquisition Limited Partnership, convinced their property had been undervalued by two appraisers, the last hired by Blumenthal, took their case to court and were fortunate enough to have the issue decided by Superior Court Judge Barbara J. Sheedy, who was attentive to the facts of the case.

Here are the facts:

1) The quarry owners questioned an appraisal of their property, taken by the state to allow the construction of a Route 7 highway bypass near Brookfield that opened last month. The owners thought their property was worth $20-$25 mi…

Fedele's Chance

There is no log cabin in Lieutenant Governor Mike Fedele’s biography, but it’s an interesting read anyway: Born in Italy, Fedele came to the United States as a tot, worked hard and made good. He was plucked by Jodi Rell from the State House of Representatives to run as her Lieutenant Governor following the dark days of the John Rowland administration.

Fedele now is running for governor on the Republican Party ticket, and there are some perilous cliffs he must negotiate along the way.

The position of Lieutenant Governor is not the brightest spot in the political heavens. It is comparable on a state level to the Vice Presidential office, famously defined by John Nance Garner, Franklin Roosevelt’s Vice President, as being (a clean translation follows) “not worth a warm bucket of spit.”

Garner ran for the presidency and lost to Roosevelt but was chosen by the Democratic convention to share the ticket after he had released his pledged delegates to FDR.

Garner later opposed Roosevelt’s pack…

Say what? Who’s “Misleading And Deceptive?”

In the face of a current budget deficit of nearly half a billion dollars, Republicans are proposing what they have always proposed -- a modest cut in spending of 6.5%.

The Republicans also want to restore 84 million in cuts to municipalities as well as the half percentage point sales tax reduction that disappeared because Speaker of the House Chris Donovan and President Pro Tem of the Senate Don Williams cleverly pegged the reduction to disappearing revenues. The tax would have remained in place if state revenues did not sink below a predictable level that caused its elimination.

The Republican proposal has caused the union bought Speaker of the State House of Representatives to reach for his adjectives. Speaker Chris Donovan denounced the Republican plan as “misleading and deceptive" – sort of like the budget he and President Pro Tem of the Senate Don Williams fashioned, which is now, only weeks after its passage through the Democratic dominated legislature, a half million dolla…

Tiger Woods Is Not Alone

The Billings Gazette  is reporting that “Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, a Montana Democrat, was romantically involved with a former staffer when he recommended her earlier this year to become the next U.S. attorney for Montana…”

Baucus, a major proponant of health care legislation, and his former state director, Melodee Hanes, began their relationship, according to the paper, in the summer of 2008 after Baucus separated from his wife.

Baucus submitted Hanes’ name, along with five others, to a third party reviewer who submitted three names, including Hanes’, to the White House. President Barack Obama, possibly forewarned, chose Mike Cotter rather than Baucus’s girl friend for the position, which will supervise the prosecution of federal crimes committed in Montanba and its seven Indian reservations.

Roll Call, a Washington DC publication, reported that the Baucus-Hanes relationship nvegan in the summer of 2008, almost a year Baucus and his wife, Wanda, were divorced in A…

Fix The #!!**#!!"n Roof

Welcome to the Fairy tale.

U.S. Sen. Chris Dodd, the guy who is chiefly responsible, along with U.S. Rep Barney Franks, for destroying the U.S. Housing market, is teaming up with Chris Donovan, Connecticut’s House Speaker, who put together a budget half a billion dollars in the red one month after it was passed, to convince outgoing Gov. Jodi Rell to pony up $25 million so that the state can receive from the Barack Obama administration, deeply in debt to the Chinese, part of a stimulus outlay to be used ferry unemployed people on a new and improved train line connecting Springfield and Hartford.

The Hartford Courant will do everything in its power to facilitate this madness.

In the meantime, Connecticut’s economic roof is leaking buckets. Even the noses of Dodd and Donovan are wet with roof tar. Bits of shingle are swimming in their soup. The batting from the attic is hanging from the gaping ceiling. The couch where they both snooze together is green with mold.

But nevermind the roof. …

McMahon And The La La Bloggers

Progressives in the Democratic Party – there are progressives in the Republican Party as well, but the brigades are marching in opposite directions -- have for two decades been braiding the rope they plan to use to hang the rich, while leveling down the mini-millionaire peaks so that everyone in society can join a union and plunder unorganized workers.

Now comes Linda McMahon with a fist full of dollars, and what is their complaint?

They fear the Republican candidate for U.S. Sen. Chris Dodd’s seat may use her millions to escape hanging.

Here is an ardent progressive who comments on blogs under the handle “Anderson Scooper” -- sometimes referred to lovingly on the blog site “Connecticut Local Politics” as “Pooper Scooper” – lamenting Linda McMahon’s deep pockets:

“Linda is our opponent, not Rob [Simmons, also running for the U.S. Senate against Dodd]. Your side is desperate for a $50 Million GOTV operation, and if that means kissing WWE’s, Cappiello’s, and Mrs. Healy’s ass, your side …

Axe The Tax Cut

Feeling the pinch, leading Democrats in the state legislature quickly settled on a means of bringing somewhat into balance a recently passed spending plan that Democratic State Comptroller Nancy Wyman asserted was about half a million short early in November, a few weeks after the legislature had passed the budget.

The ladies and gentlemen in the legislature cut tax relief out of the spending lard.

Wyman, of course, was too polite in her assessment of the budget, little more than a legislative Ponzi scheme designed to convince voters that the legislature, in tandem with the governor, had settled an annoying deficit. The budget itself -- a meandering $37.6 billion that disperses $18.64 billion this fiscal year and $18.93 billion in 2010-11 – was a chewing gum and string concoction that relied on one time revenue sources and disappearing savings.

Moody’s Investor Service took one look at the budget, shrieked at the choices made by the legislature to address budget gaps and an anticipated…

Some Chinks in Dodd’s Armor

A distinction may be made between the popularity of persons (non-transferable) and the popularity of positions and programs (transferable, sometimes).

President Barack Obama personality continues to resonate with many people, though there has been some slippage lately. His programs, largely radical, are iffier. Obama’s luster is not likely to rub off on Dodd; the disparities are too great. But there is no question Dodd has attached his fate to that of the Obama agenda: a highly regulated economy and the nationalization of heath care, to mention but two points.

Dodd’s fate is also connected to what might be called the wellness of his state; and, here again, the economic programs to which he has attached his political kite are doubtable, if not doubtful. Dodd has also shifted to the center in foreign policy, which is very odd in his case.

Dodd is not made of pro-war stuff – never has been. In economic policy, he has been in the past somewhat moderate. In the last few months, we have s…