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Showing posts from August, 2010

Where’s The Parade?

President Barack Obama is due to end the war in Iraq – with a speech. It should be brought to a close with a parade – several parades, in fact. Obama no doubt will mention in his speech his own valiant efforts to bring to a close the war in Iraq, without over emphasizing the role played by lesser lights such as ex-President George Bush, whose successful efforts, after frequent failures, to implement a successful war strategy implemented by General David Petraeus were vigorously opposed by congressional Democrats and a left wing media that dubbed Petraeus “General Betray-Us.” Obama's view of the surge at the time it was proposed was not ambivalent. The left’s misgivings about the war are replicated in statements recently made by Connecticut’s Democratic congressional delegation on the occasion of Obama’s formal declaration announcing an end to direct military engagement by American soldiers in Iraq and the withdrawal of all but 50,000 support troops remaining in the country to

Blumenthal And The Prostitutes

It is sometimes said – humorously, of course – that prostitution is the world’s second oldest profession, the first being politics. True or not, we do know that politicians make political hay of prostitution. It appears that former Attorney General of New York Elliot Spitzer was en exception to this rule, and it was not until late in his sterling career we understood why: Spitzer was indulging on the side. His pastime cost him his job; it almost cost him his wife . One does not condemn one’s own indulgences and escape being tagged a hypocrite, particularly if one is a demagogic attorney general. If you live in a glass bordello, it’s best not to throw stones. Attorney General of Connecticut Richard Blumenthal has other hobbies; a best guess might be canasta. We know Blumenthal does not shy from condemning prostitution because several months ago he took off after craigslist, a California based company, with a pitchfork. This suggests that, unlike Spitzer, Connecticut’s attorney general

Blumenthal’s Twin Personas

According to a report in the Hartford Courant, Linda McMahon, Republican candidate for the U.S. congress, has received, on a Freedom of Information request, a copy of Attorney General Richard Blumenthal’s daily calendar. The calendar entries are sketchy and unencumbered by red meat, reminiscent of the results of an earlier FOIA request made by various parties interested in Governor Jodi Rell’s daily calendar at a time when the governor was being assaulted by her political opponents as a do-nothing figurehead. Reporter Daniela Altimari notes: “If last month's entries are typical, the datebook isn't exactly crammed with events. “In fact, most dates have just one event listed -- and several pages are completely blank. The remainder of the entries involve public events, interviews and the like. “A sampling: “Wed., July 14 11:45 a.m.--Interview here w\Fox 61 re: Craigslist “Thur., July 15 5-8 p.m.--St. Francis Hospital Cancer Center FR @ home of Mark and Barbara Gordon

Blumenthal The Ahab of Attorneys General

Not for nothing was Attorney General Richard Blumenthal kept on the American Enterprise Institute’s first spot listing of worst attorneys general in the United States for the last few years . Only recently did Mr. Blumenthal slip from first place, which presented a rare moment of anguish for the heir apparent to U.S. Sen. Chris Dodd’s seat in the congress. Blumenthal wore the first place distinction, he said, as a red badge of courage. The AEI is a conservative (read: “bad”) center of sweetness and light, whereas Mr. Blumenthal is, as every careful reader of Connecticut’s icon burnishing media well knows, goodness unalloyed. Two icon breaking newspapers recently have taken a shot at St. Blumenthal’s solar plexus: the Connecticut Post and the Journal Inquirer, both relying on a comprehensive report written by Bill Cummings, a Post investigative reporter . Is it possible that some Connecticut papers are heart-sick at being scooped by outliers such as the New York Times and the Wall S

Dodd Can't Get No Respect

"Daily Kos"  – a.k.a. Markos Moulitsas , the V.I. Lenin of the progressive movement in the United States, is hot on Elizabeth Warren, President Barack Obama’s prospective choice for the “soon to be born” Consumer Protection Financial Bureau, one of the many mansions in Dodd’s vast regulatory bill, now out of utero in the U.S. Congress. The Consumer Protection Financial Bureau, as conceived by Dodd in his massive regulatory scheme, will resemble, when fully functioning, Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal on steroids. In the entire nation, no industry will be safe from federal molestation, no tear will go unnoticed or unwiped. Once hot on Warren himself, according Mouletsas, Dodd’s ardor has now cooled: “Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd has for weeks called into doubt whether Elizabeth Warren can be confirmed to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. But for the first time this week, Dodd has called into question whether she's qualifie

Blumenthal, The Inside Outsider

" Sen. Dodd and I agree on many things, but we also disagree on many things. I'm not reluctant to say that I've never been a part of Washington . I've never been an insider. And I'm happy to be running to stand up for ordinary people." – Democratic Party Nominee Richard Blumenthal It strains credulity to view Mr. Blumenthal as a political outsider. He has been, variously in his long political career, an administrative assistant to U.S. Senator Abraham Ribbicoff; an aid to Daniel Patrick Moynihan, later a U.S. senator, when Mr. Moynihan was an assistant in President Richard Nixon's White House in 1969; a law clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Harry A. Blackmun in 1974; U.S. Attorney for Connecticut at the ripe young age of 31; and a volunteer council for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. Mr. Blumenthal also wrote for the Washington Post newspaper. These are all Beltway connections. Additionally, Mr. Blumenthal served in the Connecticut State House of Repre

Mr. Blumenthal, This Is Your Wake Up Call

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal’s lead, a robust 40% when he first entered the U.S. senate race, has now been whittled down to 7%. The whole of the loss cannot be attributed to his casual relationship with the truth, and only part of it can be put down to Linda McMahon’s millions. The lady sure knows how to advertise. Mrs. McMahon’s considerable fortune permits her to sidestep the usual power brokers, including the mainstream media (MSM), who recently stepped up, to little avail, to revive former Rep. Rob Simmon’s moribund and penniless campaign. The MSM has contracted McMahonphobia in part because she is rich. The MSM has always suffered from pecuniaphobia. Note to the reader, if there is a reader: Don’t bother to look it up. The word has been newly minted from the Latin "money" (pecunia) and "fear of" (phobia) and, as its step-father, I fully expect to be credited whenever it is used. This annoying sidestepping steams the MSM because they want a hand at

Best on Blumenthal

Possibly the best single piece of journalism written on Attorney General Richard Blumenthal – that has not been written BY Mr. Blumenthal – is this one turned out by Bill Cummings , an investigative reporter for the Connecticut Post.

Obama, The Mosque And Property Rights

President Barack Obama and family stuck their toes in Florida for 26 hours on their way to a ten day family stay at toney Martha’s Vineyard. Peter Nichols of the Tribune’s Washington Bureau  explains the motivation for the trip: “Having urged people to visit the Gulf Coast, the Obamas risked looking elitist, so White House aides arranged the trip to the Florida Panhandle. They got the pictures they wanted. Obama took a dip in the bay and high-fived his daughter, who made a hole in one at a miniature golf course.” While in Florida, Mr. Obama stuck his toe, once again, into the New York mosque-cultural center controversy. While he appeared have approved the building of a mosque and cultural center a little more than a stone’s throw from the place where, more than 9 years ago, jihadi terrorists had rubblized the World Trade Center Twin Towers, Mr. Obama now began to massage the message. The nineth anniversary of the terrorist incident in New York is coming around this September 11th.

The Essential Blumenthal

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, some Blumenthal watchers will tell you, cannot be left unattended. Like a toddler used to the steadying hand of his nanny, Mr. Blumenthal topples easily when he is left to himself. Propped up by his subalterns – numerous attorneys in his office and, now that he is the front runner in a campaign for the U.S. Congress, any political adepts the Beltway can spare in an important election season for congressional Democrats – Mr. Blumenthal expertly navigates past the political shoals. Left to himself, he shivers the timbers of his handlers. Recently, Mr. Blumenthal traveled to the Norwalk Inn to celebrate a victory of sorts. Almost eight years ago, the owner of the inn purchased an adjoining property, intending to knock down a house in disrepair that squatted on the property. The owner had no difficulty getting from the town a demolition permit, and he bought the property intending to demolish the long vacant house, which would permit him to expand th

Romash Rage

Mark Davis, a respected newsman at News Channel 8, was made to eat his mic by Marla Romash, a Blumenthal gatekeeper up from the Sodom on the Potomac who used to practice journalism here in Connecticut. Ms. Romash was both a political flack and a reporter of some merit back in the day. She even had a robust sense of humor. Once asked whether she liked politics, Ms. Romash -- who ate, drank and slept politics -- brought the house down by saying she liked it better than sex. Apparently, Washington has made Ms. Romash somewhat barren in the humor department. Or it may be that close association with Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has had an effect on the lady’s once ironclad but jovial nerves. Dick -- the prospective U.S. senator has invited those who report on him to call him, more familiarly, Dick, instead of Richard, a formal mouthful -- does tend to emit deadly serious vibes. Mr. Blumenthal really does seem anxious to break away from his handlers and let it all hang out.

The Chameleon Factor, Authenticity, And The General Election

A chameleon will change its color, depending upon the place in which it finds itself, so as to make itself invisible to predators. Large animals have powerful toothy, bone splitting jaws to see them past precarious moments. Small animals have their wits. I saw my first chameleon when my wife and I were visiting Savannah, Georgia. I had taken my coffee out to a brick enclosed courtyard and from the corner of my eye perceived a motion in the plush ivy. I froze when I saw the chameleon because, never having seen one before at close range, I wished to observe it moving stealthily not a foot from the cup. Rotating its pin-hole of an eye, it passed from brick to ivy, changing color in its course from brick red to ivy green. When I made a sudden movement, it was up and over the wall like a marine at boot camp. Some politicians are like chameleons, others not. Martha Dean, the Republican nominee for attorney general this year, opened her campaign last March with all flags flying. Her o

Losing Iraq? And Lamduckery

Why Lose Iraq Now? “The thousands of American lives and hundreds of billions of dollars that have gone to stabilizing Iraq,” is in danger of being compromised, according to Marisa Sullivan, deputy director of the Institute for the Study of War, writing in The Hill . Charles Krauthammer On Lamduckery Life as a politician does not end when the politician decides to throw in the towel. Sen. Chris Dodd has months to go before he rests; so, for that matter does retiring Gov. Jodi Rell. Dodd and Rell are both lame ducks. But should anyone suppose lame ducks are dead ducks, Charles Krauthammer offers a warning . The prospect of re-election is a restraint. Remove the restraint, and you have left but two internal restraints: honor and shame. When the lame duck congress returns after the upcoming elections, Krauthammer writes, “The only thing holding the Democrats back would be shame, a Washington commodity in chronically short supply. To pass in a lame-duck session major legislation so

Citizens For Change Asks Candidates To Commit to Policies

A day before the primaries, Citizens For Change (CFC) has released the names of those candidates who thus far have “publicly committed to the people of Connecticut that they will address the numerous public policy challenges confronting our state and our nation,” according to the group’s press release. CFC is inviting all candidates to sign its COMMITMENT FOR CONNECTICUT documents the group has made available on its website at . Richard Olivastro, a spokesman for CFC, said that 17 candidates have led the way for others by signing the documents. They are: United States Senate : Peter Schiff United States House of Representatives : Mark Greenberg, Dan Reale, Rob Merkle, Justin Bernier, Scott DeShefy; LT Governor: Mark Boughton CT Attorney General : Stephen Fournier CT Treasurer : Jeff Wright CT Secretary of the State : Jerry Farrell CT State House : Kathryn Brown, Ken Nelson, John Searles, Malvi Lennon CT State Senate : Neil Nichols, David Pia, Len Suz

Garber’s Swift Boat Ads And Dean’s Challenge

Ross Garber waited quite a while before expressing his interest in running for attorney general as a Republican. This sort of thing may be inconvenient to party nominated candidates, but so long as it’s still a free country, Mr. Garber is free to be his potty old self, and everyone else in the party should be prepared to humor him. But Mr. Garber now has chosen to wrest votes from attorney general party nominee Martha Dean through a series of “swift-boating” ads. “Swift-boating” is a term that came into currency during the presidential run of Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts when it was felt by Kerry’s supporters that his opponents were pumping false and toxic ads into the political bloodstream. Garber so far has released, a little more than a week before the primary, two swift-boat ads, either one of which is worthy of the most shameless of ex-President Richard Nixon’s worst subalterns. The Garber-garbage ads tears out of context a Dean quote suggesting an honest discussion conc

The 10 Percenter: McMahon to Blumenthal – Boo!

A Quinnipiac poll brings to Linda McMahon, the Republican Party nominee for the U.S. senate, some glad tidings. Since her campaign opened, McMahon has reduced from 40 to10 percent a lead in the polls enjoyed by present Attorney General Richard Blumenthal. In the past month, she has reduced Blumenthal’s lead from 17 to 10 percent. The message to Blumenthal ought to be plain – engage. He will not be able to coast into office on the strength of his perceived reputation as a crusading attorney general filing suits galore on behalf of consumers oppressed by greedy businessmen. Blumenthal’s last and best hope, before McMahon begins to examine closely in ads his record as attorney general, Blumenthal’s strong suit, is to hope against hope that Rob Simmons, who has little resources to conduct an aggressive general election campaign, can pull his fat out of the fire by defeating McMahon in the August 10th Republican Party primary. Blumenthal is joined in this hope by those in the state’

Letters, We Get Letters, Larson to Dems – Be Bold

Democratic leaders in the U.S. House, Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Caucus Chairman John Larson, have sent out to their troops a memo that outlines the general defense House members will be using during the election season to deflect impertinent charges from their Republicans opponents. The memo is about two pages long, considerably less than the 2,319 page Dodd-Frank Bill that reorganizes American enterprise or the 1,990 page Health Care Bill that, for the first time in U.S. history, compels young American citizens to purchase a product, health insurance, they may not want or need. Given the brevity of the letter, Connecticut’s Democratic U.S. congressional delegation might even read it. Most congresspersons, including the issuers of the memo, neglected to read either the Health Care or the Dodd-Frank bill in it’s entirety, and Pelosi famously quipped about one or the other or both of them that they would have to be passed so that House members who voted for them would know what’s in th

A Preview Of A Post-Primary Gubernatorial Campaign

Primaries are coming to a close in less than a week. It can’t happen soon enough. Primaries are a distortion medium. People will have noticed that while general elections are matter, primaries are anti-matter. A Democratic politician blown to the left in a primary has only a few months before the general election to make his way to the right, and the same drama occurs among Republicans, though the motion is in the opposite direction. It is said on these occasions that Democrats, courting unions and progressives in the primary, find it necessary to address themselves in the general election to moderates within their party, as well as unaffiliated voters. Republicans, drifting right during primaries, face the same conundrum. Promises made during primaries are often abandoned during general elections. All this shape shifting distorts politics. But what’s the alternative? That IS the problem. From the point of view of party people, the alternative – doing away with primaries – is unthi


When Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced that he did not have enough votes to pass a Cap-and-Trade bill, there was a noticeable sigh of relief. But regulations as a substitute was not necessarily a good thing. Cap and Trade was not new. It was used to control sulfur emissions in order to diminish acid rain. The bill passed the House, by a slight margin, 219-212. But industry brought a lawsuit challenging it, and the court held that it was illegal. Senators Kerry and Lieberman and (till he dropped out) Lindsey Graham were working on the bill when Mr. Reid found he did not have the 60 votes needed to break a C&T filibuster. If C&T was out, and nobody was ready to introduce as an alternative a bill to tax carbon, the situation gave EPA the opportunity to take the lead.. In theory, congressional C&T legislation could be superior to regulations by EPA. EPA’s capability in writing regulations is limited by law. EPA requires applicants to use the best most advanced e