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Showing posts from January, 2019

A Looney Bill: Reinventing Connecticut

Now that Democrats have reclaimed the castle from marauding Republicans, State Senator Martin Looney is flexing his considerable muscles. Looney is the President Pro Tem of the State Senate and, as such, is one of two important gatekeepers steering bills through the legislature; the other is Speaker of the State House of Representatives Joe Aresimowicz, quite literally bought by unions. Aresimowicz is education coordinator employed by AFSCME.
Looney’s political turf is Half of New Haven, which last saw a Republican mayor 68 years ago, and Hamden, politically a vassal of New Haven, home of Yale College. Looney has been in politics for a quarter century, and his tenure has taught him a thing or two. Both Looney and Aresimowicz are progressives very much in the mold of Presidential contender Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, socialist presidential contender Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the new face of Democrat socialism, a US Representative from New York's …

A Conversation With Peter Wolfgang

“The act of defending any of the cardinal virtues has today all the exhilaration of a vice” -- A Defense of Humilities, The Defendant, 1901, G.K. Chesterton
Small “o” orthodox Christians of a certain age will be familiar with the cardinal virtues. They are: prudence, temperance, fortitude and justice – all under attack by a secular culture that, judging by Hollywood or Washington DC standards, appears to have won the battle. But, never fear, the four cardinal virtues form the breastplate of a church against which, its founder once proclaimed, the gates of Hell shall not prevail.
The Cardinal virtues, St. Augustine tells us, better enable us to pursue the good life: “To live well is nothing other than to love God with all one's heart, with all one's soul and with all one's efforts; from this,  it comes about that love is kept whole and uncorrupted (through temperance). No misfortune can disturb it (and this is fortitude). It obeys only [God] (and this is justice), and is care…

Malloy, The Sanctuary Governor

“We are continuing to work with and await guidance from the appropriate federal agencies on screening measures that will be taken. With that said, if refugees – many who are children fleeing a horrific war-torn country—seek and are granted asylum after a rigorous security process, we should and will welcome them in Connecticut,” so said a spokesperson for Governor Dannel Malloy,according to a piece in the Hartford Courant.
There are some obvious difficulties with this passage. Syria is administered by an odious dictator, perhaps even more ruthless than the father who preceded him, and rigorous screening measures such as those mentioned by Malloy are not always possible in horrific, war-torn countries.
Of course, a screening examination of even the most cursory kind is never possible in the case of illegal aliens from wretched countries such as Honduras and Guatemala who, crossing through Mexico, bum-rush the US border and thereafter become nearly invisible tucked within a welter of h…

Connecticut’s Trump Bump And Culture Reinvention

While Connecticut Democrats were busying themselves thumping President Donald Trump during the recently concluded elections – the state’s all Democrat US Congressional Delegation would not shed a tear if U.S. Senator Dick Blumenthal, Speaker of the US House Nancy Pelosi and US Senator Chuck Schumer were to succeed in impeaching him – Trump has delivered the goods to The Provision State.
The state’s underperforming economy may finally join the rest of the nation, much of which had recovered from the Great Recession many moons ago, in a splendid recovery – just in time too. Economists in Connecticut have not titled the coming jobs boom The Trump Bump, although a recent Hartford Business Journal (HBJ) report, “UTC’s 4Q profits jump 73%; CEO Hayes airs separation plans HBJ” comes dangerously close.

Attkisson On Transactional Reporting

Journalism, we are told, is suffering from two ailments: Fake news – some of the boys and girls are just pestiferous ideologues – and transactional journalism. Of the two, the more fatal is transactional journalism, because it perverts the very purpose of honest reporting, which is to tell the truth and shame the Devil.
Reporters who engage in transactional journalism are the Donald Trumps of the reportorial world. Journalism is, among other things, a business, and business orbits around access to a product. When he was Attorney General of Connecticut for more than 20 years, Dick Blumenthal was a master at putting his product before the television cameras, so much so that it was said of him -- by journalists weary of having to make his frequent media releases into reportorial foie gras -- that there was no more dangerous place in Connecticut than the space between Blumenthal and a television camera.

The Republican Resistance, Themis Klarides

Themis Klarides, the leader of a much reduced Republican contingent in the Connecticut House of Representatives, is fair-minded, but not the sort of woman who will suffer fools – and, more importantly, political frauds – gladly. She may allow two strikes, but three strikes and you’re out.
Very early on, Klarites drew a bead on the Malloy administration, which sought to marginalize Republican influence over political affairs by loudly shutting the door on Republicans such as Klarides. A shrewd judge of character, she carefully catalogued the quills Governor Dannel Malloy had been throwing about.

Hartford Is The Canary In Connecticut’s Mineshaft

According to a story in a Hartford paper, the city’s mayor, Luke Bronin, a rising star in state politics, “declined to comment on the dispute” between Hartford teachers and their nominal patron, the Hartford Board of Education. The dispute is about contracts and the inability of the people of Hartford to finance years of overspending.
A few months ago, Bronin, unable to meet his contractual obligations, sought a bailout from state taxpayers. Bronin leapt from the Malloy administration frying pan, where he served as Governor Dannel Malloy’s chief council, directly into the fire as mayor of a city teetering on the edge of bankruptcy, and his former boss was only too happy to bail out his protege by flooding the city with state tax balm.
The Hartford school board is seeking concession from teacher union representatives, and the concessions will, if ever they bear fruit, make future state bailouts less burdensome to an all-Democrat political hegemon that may, under the enlightened adminis…

Liebowitz On Juvenile Crime And Punishment

The letter below was written by Michael Liebowitz in response to a previous letter written to Wethersfield Chief of Police James Cetran. Liebeowitz is the author, along with Brent McCall, of “Down The Rabbit Hole” reviewed in Connecticut Commentary nearly a year ago.
Leibowitz here addresses the very touchy and much discussed question of crime and punishment: specifically, does punishment deter crime? The short answer is “yes,” provided the punishment, a necessary check on criminal behavior, most especially in the case of juvenile delinquents, is accompanied with therapeutic resources.

The Spending Firewall Has Collapsed

CTMirror notes in a recent story that minority leader in the state House of Representations Themis Klarides has voiced her concern often enough that “when Democrats expanded their lead in the House and regained control of the Senate — that the majority is gearing up to spend recklessly…‘All we have heard from our colleagues on the other side of the aisle has been more, bigger, and let’s expand,’ Klarides said.”
Effective Republican resistance to spending increases, always a matter of numbers in the General Assembly, will be severely reduced in the new session.

The Progress of Connecticut’s Progressives: Is Larson Toast?

Connecticut’s gerrymandered First District, the eagle’s aerie for the last 20 years of US Representative-for-life John Larson, may in the future develop progressive cracks. Have Connecticut’s “safe” Democrat districts become suddenly vulnerable to attack – certainly not from moderate or right of center Republicans, but from newly animated progressives?Representative-for-life Rosa DeLauro of the 3rd District may be less vulnerable than other more moderate Democrats in Connecticut’s US Congressional delegation, because she is, and has been for a long while, the tip of the progressive spear point in Connecticut. But DeLauro too is getting on – she is 75 years young – and while the spirit may be willing, frail human bodies are subject to all the ills flesh is heir to.

Here in Connecticut, progressives now have a legitimate claim on Democrat politicians in the state’s General Assembly. Almost half of the legislature’s Democrat caucus is made up of progressives. And their brains are swelling…




The New Year

It may be worth mentioning – and, in fact, President Donald Trump, never shy about tooting his own horn, has mentioned it several times – that the national economy has improved under his watch.
An Associated Press story noted on the 4th of the New Year, “U.S. employers went on a hiring spree in December, adding a surprising 312,000 jobs… Health care and education added 82,000 jobs last month, the largest jump in nearly nine years. Restaurants and drinking places posted a net gain of 40,700 jobs. Builders added 38,000 construction jobs, while manufacturers increased their payrolls by 32,000 workers.” Amazingly, “The torrid hiring in December far outstripped the 180,000 jobs investors had been anticipating and could help ease fears that the economy’s expansion — now in the middle of its 10th year — may be coming to an end.”

Lamont’s Democrat Problem

During his coming first term in office, Governor Ned Lamont need have no fear of the Republican Party, which was thoroughly thrashed by Democrats in the recently concluded elections.
Out- hustled by Democrats, Republicans lost 12 seats in the state House and 5 seats in the state Senate, returning the political status quo ante to the Democrat Party’s high point when former Governor Dannel Malloy first came into office. In years following the Malloy administration, Republicans had achieved parity with Democrats in the Senate and were only a few seats behind Democrats in the House.