Sunday, October 30, 2016

No Time For Buts

Mr. Pesci,

I’m sure I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know, but…

The choices for President this year are almost equally nauseating. I know you make it a practice not to endorse politicians for office, but I am going to ask you, point blank, whether you intend to vote this year for the rock or the hard place. I can only hope you will not retreat into the usual cowardly formula: voting is a sacred and secret right, like a skull and bones pledge, bla, bla, bla… It is a choice all of us MUST make this year, since we live in a time in which both indifference and cagey answers are impossible. Not to choose is to choose. So then, who is it to be, Hillary or Trump? Like the rest of us this year – a pivotal year in our politics, you say – you do not have the luxury of anonymous indifference. You MUST choose – no “if, ands or buts.”

Wishing you the best,

The Devil You Know.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

The Weiner October Surprise

The Hillary Clinton Presidential campaign is now in full farce mode.

Anthony Weiner, sent to the curb by his long suffering wife Huma Abedin, Clinton’s closest aide, is back -- in a manner of speaking.

FBI Director James Comey, who previously gave Clinton a pass on criminal violations involving the improper use of a private server, has now advised relevant members of Congress that he is supplementing his previous testimony. Here is Comey's letter in full:

Friday, October 28, 2016

In Praise Of Mathew Corey, With Interior Footnotes

Matthew Corey is the Republican Party’s sacrificial lamb this year in the 1st District’s U.S. Congressional contest (“Sacrificial lamb,” a term derived from Abrahamic religion traditions in which a lamb is prized as a highly valued possession and then sacrificed to a higher power).

Mr. Corey is running in a gerrymandered district that Republicans last held in 1957. In fact, the District has been a Democratic satrapy for all but six years since 1931. The demography of the District is a very picture of fate as it was understood by the ancient Greeks – powerful, tragic or comic and always inescapable.

The voter breakdown in the District runs like this: Democrat active voters 156,784; Republicans 71,932; Unaffiliateds 172,626.  The Harford Courant, not unexpectedly, has recently sprinkled its endorsement over Democrat U.S. Representative John Larson. Two days before aspersing Mr. Larson with journalistic holy water, the paper encouraged the nation to replace former Democratic Speaker of the U.S. House Nancy Pelosi with Mr. Larson, assuming Democrats are able to seize the House, because, among other reasons, Mr. Larson holds a safe seat and therefore will not be in danger of being upended by folk like Mr. Corey.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The Email Spill

Bill Buckley was once asked what the real Dick Nixon was like. “Which one,” he responded? “There are about four of them.” There are a few Hillary Clintons jostling against each other in her capacious public persona.

The Great Email Spill of 2016 has tossed on the shore a few dead personas.

Common Sense, Blumenthal And Partial Birth Abortion

The controversy several years ago centering on the question “Is the fetus a person?” was not settled by appeals to religious conscience; it has been settled, not to everyone’s satisfaction, by 1) technology and 2) the common sense Americans are often praised for.  Common sense is, after all, a sense, very much like the other senses through which we receive the world in all its gore and glory .

Ultrasound shows us that the fetus at later stages in a pregnancy moves and reacts to attempts to snuff out its life by an abortion provider – in consultation, of course, with his sometimes uninformed victim, the prospective mother of the child, prospective because the abortion is also, sadly, an un-mothering.

The late term fetus, reasonable people sense, is clothed in personhood. Only one who holds extreme views on abortion would deny this. The late term fetus – some dare call it a child -- is certainly not a part of the woman’s body, as for example her liver, which can never be confused with a person, is a part of her body. The fetus is a separate life; to be sure not one that can survive unassisted outside the womb without motherly attendance. But then, neither may a born baby survive outside the womb unattended, and even the abortionist, as well as court justices who argue that persons unrecognized as such by the law may be treated as property, would not presume to assert that a child newly emerged from the womb should be put beyond the reach of the compassion, mercy and justice of legislators.

Monday, October 24, 2016

The Blumenthal-Carter Debate

In Dan Carter, who is challenging Dick Blumenthal for a seat in the U.S. Senate, the State Republican Party may have found its “happy warrior,” a title the Democratic Party once bestowed on Hubert Humphrey.

Looks and presence in politics are not everything, but they are not nothing. U.S. Senator Dick Blumenthal, whether he is debating or attending a garage sale, manages to look like the Old Man of the Mountain before the slide. Stiff, foreboding, resolute, unbudgeable – most especially on the matter of partial birth abortion, parental notification and the selling of baby parts, all issues that place him very far from his Connecticut constituents. And he is preachy, the very image of a Harvard-Yale educated aggressive Attorney General on the hunt for delinquent business owners, thought abortion in its grosser forms is the one profitable business in the United States that Blumenthal adamantly refuses to regulate.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Linares Targeted For Destruction By Democrats

Democratic sappers in Connecticut have devoted themselves to undermining the re-election efforts of State Senator Art Linares, who is running on the Republican ticket in Connecticut’s 33rd District, by tying him to Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump. A group of women has stepped forward to accuse Mr. Trump of having molested them some years ago. Will the gambit work?

Possibly. Democrats committed to returning to the White House a First Husband plausibly accused of rape seem to think so, and they have invested some money in the project.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Après Le Deluge, C’est Hillary?

The national elections at this point may remind poor battered voters of Oscar Wilde’s description of fox hunting: “The unspeakable in pursuit of the uneatable!”

Republicans, Victor Davis Hanson writes in National Review, will have much repair work to do after the election – whatever happens. National Review has not been hospitable to Donald Trump’s candidacy, but the election should awaken second thoughts among conservatives. In “Conservatives Should Vote For The Republican Nominee,” Hanson takes a birch switch to what Trump supporters might call disdainfully the Republican Party Establishment.

Here is the central premise in Hanson’s piece:
 “Something has gone terribly wrong with the Republican Party, and it has nothing to do with the flaws of Donald Trump. Something like his tone and message would have to be invented if he did not exist. None of the other 16 primary candidates — the great majority of whom had far greater political expertise, more even temperaments, and more knowledge of issues than did Trump — shared Trump’s sense of outrage — or his ability to convey it — over what was wrong: The lives and concerns of the Republican establishment in the media and government no longer resembled those of half their supporters.

 “The Beltway establishment grew more concerned about their sinecures in government and the media than about showing urgency in stopping Obamaism. When the Voz de Aztlan and the Wall Street Journal often share the same position on illegal immigration, or when Republicans of the Gang of Eight are as likely as their left-wing associates to disparage those who want federal immigration law enforced, the proverbial conservative masses feel they have lost their representation. How, under a supposedly obstructive, conservative-controlled House and Senate, did we reach $20 trillion in debt, institutionalize sanctuary cities, and put ourselves on track to a Navy of World War I size?”

In the reliably conservative Wall Street Journal opinion pages, Peggy Noonan, a longtime columnist and once a special assistant and speechwriter in the reliably conservative President Ronald Reagan administration, permits herself to wonder what a Trump campaign might have looked like if Trump had been sane.

On the Democratic side, an email tsunami threatens to capsize Clinton’s plush ground-game schooner. And she is – perhaps more than Trump – unspeakable and uneatable. After nearly a half century in politics, ambition scrambles the brain. White privilege may or may not be a political myth, but political privilege is the original sin of politics. Just ask Machiavelli, or Hanson, a classical historian and author of “A War Like No Other: How the Athenians and Spartans Fought the Peloponnesian War.”

Here in Connecticut, the sort of people whose business it is to gauge the correlation of political forces are dusting off their crystal balls. All the editorials nominating so-and-so- for such-and-such have already been written. It remains only to pull the pins on the editorial endorsements.

Their left of center sensitive data receptors tell them Clinton has the edge, both nationally and here in the land of steady habits, which has steadily voted Democrat progressives into office. Connecticut progressives, in turn, have steadily voted in favor of cosmetic and temporary spending cuts. Once returned to office, they will vote in favor of higher taxes for two reasons: 1) They wish to use politicians to advance a particular rather than a general good, usually involving public workers unions; and 2) Despite the inescapably obvious consequences following tax increases and burdensome regulations – i.e. job losses, anemic economic growth and the flight from Connecticut of wealth producing entrepreneurial activity -- they are perversely convinced, mostly for ideological reasons, that Connecticut is suffering a revenue problem, not a spending problem.

Hanson’s recommendation to national Republicans that they should adjust their polity to changed circumstances is not likely to be adopted by Connecticut Democrats, our new Aristocrats. Demography, rather than a filial regard for democracy, is destiny, say the demographers, and Democrats outnumber Republicans in Connecticut by a two to one margin; unaffiliateds outnumber both Republicans and Democrats. And so – what has been must ever be. That is the operative principle of most politics, until the roof comes crashing down, at which point there will follow a peaceful, small “d”, democratic revolution.

The one thing we know for certain about democracy, G. K. Chesterton reminds us, is this: “Democracy means government by the uneducated, while aristocracy means government by the badly educated.” To this many journalists reply, yearning for an aristocracy of thought and manners, “Bunk.” They can be safely ignored. Chesterton was a superb journalist, and that is why he said “Journalism largely consists of saying 'Lord Jones is dead' to people who never knew that Lord Jones was alive.”

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Are The Parties Dead Yet?

A shrewd political observer once said that Americans rarely solve their most pressing political problems; instead, they amicably bid them goodbye.

Take the primary system by way of example. The primary system itself has been attended, especially during the current Presidential election, with glaring problems that pretty nearly everyone has studiously ignored. It is the primary system that has given us two of the most unpalatable presidential candidates in U.S. History. Nearly fifty percent of voters on either side of the political spectrum this year will be voting AGAINST the Presidential candidates, according to a September Pew Research poll.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Progressive Democrats And Post-Modern Religion

So, what do politicians really think? Perhaps the more important question is: How do the rest of us know what politicians really think?

The post-modern answer to this last question is: We read their emails. By their emails shall ye know them. When speaking among friends and political comrades in emails, politicians sometimes discard their masks, loosen their belts and tell the rest of us what they REALLY THINK. We owe these freshets of honesty to hackers and hacker aggregators such as WiliLeaks.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Faking The Budget, Again

There is nothing ambiguous in Gail Lavielle’s kickback. This is what the Republican State Representative said about the Democrat’s new attempt to smudge budget figures: “Here it is: documented evidence made available by the respected CTMirror that the governor and the administration are HIDING Connecticut's current deficit until after the election. Remember, the current majority legislature made this possible by voting just a couple of years ago to move the annual autumn pre-election revenue forecast until after the election. There will be more unconscionable tax increases, more service cuts, and more failing infrastructure if that majority remains. And it's all avoidable: the five-year plan we outlined this spring clearly showed how, starting with real state labor cost reforms, bonding reallocations, and implementing the spending cap.” Mrs. Lavielle’s statement was echoed by other distraught Republicans.

The CTMirror story noted that although budget projections filed with the State Comptroller’s office showed “that finances were in balance and that revenues for the General Fund — which covers most operating costs in the budget — were coming in as anticipated,” a memo issued two months earlier requesting agency heads to keep their budgets lean contained an estimated General Fund revenue figure issued by the Governor Malloy’s budget guru, Ben Barnes, of  $17.75 billion -- which was, CTMirror computed, “$133 million less than the amount needed to balance the current budget.”

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

The Many Faces Of Hillary Clinton

Some people think Hillary Clinton and her now faltering husband Bill, both products of the Silly Sixties (SS), are too Machiavellian for their own good. Others think Mrs. Clinton has never shed her admiration for Saul Alinsky, the political guru of the SS and author of “Rules for Radicals," whose own ideal of a perfect political and social radical was Lucifer, AKA The Devil, to whom Mr. Alinsky dedicated his hand-book on cultural destruction.

A senior at Wellesley College, Mrs. Clinton wrote a 92 page thesis on Mr. Alinsky.  Later at Yale, a nursery bed for U.S. politicians and presidents in the modern age, Mrs. Clinton bent her knee to the radicalism of the day and, some think, began plotting an unobstructed path to the presidency. It’s been a long slog. Her meandering but methodical course has led through hubby Bill, past a few bimboes, through the Secretary of State office by way of  the U.S. Senate, over the smoldering ruins of Benghazi, over the prostrate body of Vermont socialist Bernie Sanders, and now over Donald Trump, real estate mogul and womanizer, like Mrs. Clinton’s husband, Bill.

Monday, October 10, 2016

The Clinton-Trump Debate, Round Two

Since the sixties sexual revolution, which overthrew the pre-silly sixties traditional morality of the Western World, everyone has become an expert on the subject of sex. The moral questions that tormented St. Augustine – who was not, by his own admission, a saint – are easily answered today by asking the question, what would I do in circumstances A or B? In the era of unorganized religion, we all have out private codes.

If I were President of the United States, would I have seduced an aide in the White House when, on one occasion, I was chatting with a high Israeli official on the phone? Probably not. Would I have bitten Juanita Broaddrick’s lip in the process, so she says, of raping her? Not in the cards. If I were a self-infatuated real estate mogul in New York, would I have bragged about my conquests of married women to Billy Bush, then the host of Access Hollywood, little thinking that my every word would surface eleven years later in a Presidential campaign? Nope. If I were the wife of a robber who had a bank safe hidden under her marriage bed, would I raise the question of petty robbery in a Presidential debate? Not unless, Donald Trump has said of Hillary Clinton, my judgment was irreparably impaired.

Saturday, October 08, 2016

The Courant’s Endorsement Of Hillary Clinton: Do Media Endorsements Matter?

The media has lost its moral pull. The approval rating of the lowest bottom-feeding politician is several fathoms higher than that of “the media,” according to a September 2016 Gallup Poll.

The media, even less than the current Democratic and Republican presidential nominees, simply does not give a hoot about approval polls directed at them, which are worth pausing over none-the-less.

Thursday, October 06, 2016

Connecticut’s Budgets, Unions And Cowards

Over the past 25 years, Connecticut has increased taxes by leaps and bounds. The first leap began when then Independent Governor Lowell “The Maverick” Weicker muscled through the General Assembly an income tax measure.

Governor Dannel Malloy increased taxes twice. During his first term, he and the Democrat dominated General Assembly imposed on the state the largest tax increase in its history; and this was followed during his second term by the second largest tax increase in state history. Yet, despite all this new revenue flowing into state coffers, non-partisan budget analysts inform us that the budget deficit during the current fiscal year ending last June is $170 million. Looking forward to fiscal year 2017-18, the legislature’s nonpartisan Office of Fiscal Analysis (OFA) has projected a deficit of about $1.3 billion. The budget deficit that had occasioned the introduction of the Weicker income tax was about $1.5 billion. The income tax itself was a permissive flag that invited the unrestrained spending that has so recently distressed Mr. Weicker.

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

The Real War On Women


This is the way a woman described her rape assault to Connecticut Commentary in 2014:

“James had assaulted me many years ago and was sentenced to one year, I believe. He served six months. A protective order was put in place. Approximately six months after his release…  He broke into my house and waited for me to return home. He beat me for hours using anything at his disposal: the china cabinet, the TV, stereo, speakers, his fists, the phone. I sustained extensive serious physical and mental trauma. I had escaped the house twice, but he dragged me back and continued beating me. The third time I escaped the house, a snow plow truck driver saw me on the side of the road in a pool of blood, interceded and saved my life.”

Monday, October 03, 2016

Clinton’s Calculus: Machado vs Broaddrick

Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders’ choice for President, is not only the most experienced candidate for President in – to take a cue from her handlers – the world; she is also the most clever campaigner for president, far more clever than the duffer Donald Trump.

Well, perhaps a touch less clever than soon to be ex-President Barack Obama who, when he dished Mrs. Clinton in the 2008 presidential primary, was certainly not the most experienced presidential candidate in U.S. history. The historical muse reminds us that Ulysses Grant is one of the few presidents who had less political experience than Mr. Obama – and it showed when the Grant presidency fell into the Whiskey Ring and other multiple scandals. Lack of experience tells, but so does experience.

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