Here is today’s column.
I left Joe Ganim off the list of miscreants, but I promise it was not because of his party affiliation. I see this as a problem not confined to party.
Yes but you did mention Phil Giordano who is beyond the pale.
Missed Gaffey and oh so many others who dress in Blue and wear donkey ears.
Gaffey came later. I was writing a sentence about how we were perceived in 2006-7.
Based on their personal experience Rowland and Eddie Perez could start a remodeling/renovation business together but the expectation of an honest days work would weigh heavy on them.
a problem not confined to party
The main difference between the parties in this regard is that the Dems are the party of government. It promotes government programs and departments to solve the world’s observed problems; primarily “inequality.” Programs and departments spend money, are therefor opportunities for misappropriation. It’s not so much that Dems are more corrupt, it’s that they advocate for conditions more susceptible to corruption. It is the party of the urban machine, for example.
A second difference between parties is that the Republicans tend to throw their bad guys out. Whatever you may make of Rowland, he’ll never get a Republican nomination for public office. The Dems sit on their hands when called upon to get rid of scum like Perez, B. Frank, the Klintons, E. Holder, or Thomas Donilon and are quick to re-elect Newton, Hasting, or that coke guy from D.C. If there is a party of the second chance it is the Democrat Party.
Peter, you’re smarter than this.
Republicans are no better at cleaning house than Democrats. I could cite you specific instances, but it would seem argumentative.
A closer-to-true statement is that any sitting government is loath to throw out one of its own, and the reluctance is more closely linked to preservation of power and the status quo than to any party. Thus, Democratic leadership had to be dragged kicking and screaming to do anything about Rowland, because he collaborated heavily and unattractively with Sullivan and Lyons and got very buddy-buddy with Dodd. (Lieberman, not yet in full defection mode, was also deathly silent about Rowland’s ethics all through 2002-2004.) His status alongside them in the power structure was much more important than party affiliation. Whe it comes to this kind of thing, there is a two-party system in American: incumbents and challengers. I see so many newspaper commenters seduced into believing in that other two-party system, most of them so stupid and infantile that they seem like children watching a magician with awe. You strike me as a little brighter than that.
There is one more difference: In Connecticut, where corruption should matter more than on the national stage – because this is where we live — the Republican Party can no longer appreciably affect legislative bills, budgets or political patronage. We are now, for all practical purposes, a one party state. And this means that the kind of corruption one associates with active politics is, except in the municipalities, wholly in the hand of Democrats. Former Governor Rowland may be the devil himself, but he is not an active politician, and the corruption he may exert over politics in the state is no different in kind than the sort of corruption a politically influential journalist might employ. Colin and I both know that the world of journalism is full of worldly scribblers who produce copy favorable to specific politicians and afterwards go to work for their darlings and are handsomely paid for their efforts. Neither of us approve this. And – no, this opinion does not excuse anything Mr. Rowland may have done, as a journalist, to promote specific politicians. I am simply pointing out here that there is an important difference between Mr. Rowland and Mr. Newton – who, after being thrown in the clinker for having accepted bribes, is now running for his old office under the aegis of Connecticut’s Democratic Party.
I should have mentioned — I like that column.
Actually, I’m not too smart, old yes. But, I’d not take offense, or consider you immoderately argumentative if you were to cite specific instances of Republicans re-nominating their corrupt pols.
Already, 5 of the state’s 15 Republican senators have called for Mr. Rowland to resign. One day after Democrats in the House called for a special committee to decide whether to move forward with impeachment proceedings, their Republican counterparts agreed, bringing the prospect of a drawn-out legislative inquiry and impeachment hearings closer to reality. And yesterday, Senate Republicans said they unanimously supported forming an investigative committee.
Also, it is not at least possible that Mr. Rowland may have run afoul of some arrangment he had made with prosecutors in his past pleadings? None of us knows what prosecutors have tossed on the plate of the Grand Jury. Until we know, it’s best not to let our imaginations slay the angels of our better natures.
This is the real issue in many cases. THere is due process but typically politicians do not go home on suspension with their pay during an investigation.
There’s a reason why that law evolved for police misconduct and it should be a bi-partisan piece of legislation at all levels of government for politicians.
I think everyone respects due process but certain types of investigations should trigger a paid suspension. Take the politics out of the issue.
But, intelligence is over-rated. We know that our smartest of smarty-pants are lefties. Problem is ideological (i.e., willing)blindness. I think it relates to the need of the secular lefty to fill the void left by his abandonment of (real) religion. See Eric Voegelin on Gnosticism.
BRIDGEPORT, Conn., Nov. 1— The day after a federal grand jury indicted him on numerous corruption charges, Mayor Joseph P. Ganim called a news conference today to state once more that he was innocent and to challenge Gov. John G. Rowland’s demand that he resign.
Yet even as the governor and the congressman who represents the city urged Mr. Ganim to leave office and members of his own party were cool in their assessment of him, many Bridgeport leaders and residents said they were standing by their mayor.
It is ironic that the safeguard against this kind of problem, the threat of the Republican party taking over, has been neutered by the privatization and outsourcing of their political candidates. Instead of building a bench of qualified public servants they continuously nominate outsiders with little experience or skill in the political arena. What does it say about them when come November the voters of Bridgeport may very well elect a convicted felon over their candidate?
I remember attending a symposium on voting rights at the law school a couple months ago. There Secretary Merrill underscored that we are facing a crises of democracy. Voter participation is in free fall. Few people seem to be paying attention and it makes it easy for our leaders to get away with these shenanigans.
There lies our problem. I think many of our leaders forgot that they need to train the next generation to run their towns, cities, and this state. If parents do not value public participation then their children will not. If schools and community groups do not genuinely get their students involved in civic life then we end up with people that occupy public greens when their insurance costs too much instead of talking to their state legislators.
This culture of corruption is a sign of a state that is withering away. In the absence of leadership people are turning to old familiar faces, no matter how scarred they might seem. When Governor Malloy was elected it seemed that the state was finally ready for someone with courage and conviction to take the helm. Yet it is not enough to put a leader in the Governor’s mansion. We need leaders to emerge throughout the state and pull it forward.
The Hanging Shad and Register Citizen are beating up on poor Waterury for paying John Rowland $350,000 without anything to show for it. This includes anything to answer FOIA requests since John was employed by the Chamber of Commerce which technically held the consulting contract.
In a followup the Chamber reports Rowland was seen in the office ‘once in a while’.
There’s likely nothing illegal with this arrangement which in its own way speaks to aother problem that will never go away. Those who want to beat the system can do so. They simply need to avoid the obvious payoffs and take the ‘no show’ and ceremonial jobs and non-profit gigs offered to themselves, family, and friends as influence peddlars.
The community non-profit is a glorious thing in the ….er….right hands. It’s better than buying a car wash to launder money. That’s an angle ‘Breaking Bad’ needs to explore .
I’ve written before the reason Ganim and Rowland and Perez ended up in jail is more a function of stupidity than corruption.
There are so many ways money gets funnelled through non-profits: ‘slow roll’ consulting positions or for providing a premium service (such as blogging for dollars–and very good dollars at that — something like 10X the industry norm which is perfectly legal); Good old gratuitious appearance and speaking fees, etc.
It’s interesting what sorts of rationalizing people will engage in, in order to dismiss or justify the corruption within their own party or ideology. There’s always the overt “two wrongs make a right” thing … e.g., “Eddie Perez was corrupt, therefore, John Rowland being corrupt is no big deal.” There’s also the observation, as Don Pesci made above, that Democratic corruption in CT is “worse” than in the GOP, because this is effectively a one-party state.
But I’m really not interested in any of that. As Lord Acton famously said, power corrupts. Any amount of power … a little or a lot … can be enough to make some folks corrupt. It should not matter that the other party/ideology has corrupt people in it. It should not matter that the other party possesses more power.
Not one of those things should matter one iota.
What’s needed is for people to take a hard line against ALL corruption. No matter who does it. No matter which party it is. Yes, this means people need to be willing to reject people within their own party/ideology, when their corruption has been revealed.
Unfortunately most people are not willing to do this. My own hypothesis is that the majority of people develop a strong emotional attachment to their party/ideology. Having to admit one’s party/ideology is wrong … or that someone within it has done wrong … causes them emotional pain that they simply won’t tolerate. So they either dismiss the wrongdoing, chalking it up to “media bias” or something like that, or they admit the wrongdoing occurred, but use real or implied justifications to make it seem OK to them.
It’s really all about the irrationality and immmaturity which underlies most folks’ political and ideological identifications. Anyone within the GOP who’s thinking rationally is willing to concede that Rowland, for example, is someone not to be trusted any more. Any Democrat who thinks rationally, should likewise be willing to concede that Ernie Newton is not to be trusted.
To do anything else, does all of society a disservice. We desperately need to stop granting (real or implied) permission slips for corruption merely because of partisan or ideological identity. It’s unjustifiable, and it needs to stop.
Colin can’t stop obsessing about the gov
Aren’t libs the party of the dove
TIC’s given you no second
NPR rocks in France
How about you play nice and show John a little love
America is in the throes of a presidential campaign that presents real hope for the future of America (Romney) versus the same-old, same-old (Obama). While it appears right now that Obama and his socialist policies will lose in November, America will still be faced with many problems that have crept into society in the past fifty years.
While America has many liberal-caused problems, let’s examine just three of them: welfare, race relations, and education.
Welfare: In his State of the Union address on January 8, 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson declared “war on poverty.” Johnson’s speech led Congress to pass the Economic Opportunity Act, which established the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) to administer the local application of federal funds targeted against poverty. Since then, the federal government has spent approximately $16 trillion on welfare. Welfare includes, among other programs, the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP), the former food stamp program, and unemployment insurance.
In 2011, the Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight and Government Spending of the House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform held a hearing on the issue of “Duplication, Overlap, and Inefficiencies in Federal Welfare Programs.” At that hearing, Patricia A. Dalton, the chief operating officer of the General Accountability Office (GAO), testified that the GAO could not identify all existing welfare programs in the various federal departments and agencies or determine how much they cost.
She said further that she and the GAO could not give a specific number of welfare programs or even “hazard a guess” as to what percentage of those programs are actually accomplishing the purposes for which they were created.
America now spends 15 percent of its Gross Domestic Product on welfare. Welfare is now the third most expensive government spending program. Welfare spending has outpaced spending on Social Security, Medicare, education, and defense.
And welfare rolls and spending continue to expand. Welfare spending increased on SNAP alone between FY2008 and FY2011 from $39.3 billion to $75.3 billion. Over the next 10 years, welfare spending is projected to cost taxpayers $10.3 trillion. The Obama administration is now working to expand welfare further, spending $2.5 million on an ad campaign to get more people on welfare.
While campaigning in 2008, Obama said that “the war in Iraq is costing each household about $100 per month.” But applying the same spending criteria revealed that welfare cost each household $560 per month in 2009 and $638 per month in 2010.
So where are we now? A study in April 2012 by the Cato Institute says that America spends nearly $1 trillion each year to fight poverty. Since Obama took office, federal welfare spending has increased by 41 percent. But despite increased spending, the poverty rate that remains at nearly 15 percent, roughly where it was in 1965, when President Johnson declared his War on Poverty. In fact, the poverty rate has never fallen below 10.5 percent. The Cato Institute study also says that current programs are focused on making welfare recipients more comfortable — providing more food, better shelter, and health care for poor people — rather than proving the tools that will help poor people escape poverty.
Race Relations: Attorney General Eric Holder, in 2009, said that Americans are cowards when it comes to discussing race. Well, Mr. Holder, I am not a coward, so here is my discussion. Too many blacks have succumbed to the idea of “blaming” somebody and/or something for their problems. They have learned that idea from, among others, Rev. Jesse (love child) Jackson and Rev. Al (Tawana Brawley) Sharpton. For most blacks, their favorite target for blame is “whitey.” Their favorite word has become “racism.” Any criticism of anything they don’t like is “racist.” Black cultural integrity can be good, but not when the culture is manufactured in the name of a blame-game.
From New Century Foundation’s The Color of Crime, we learn:
• Police and the justice system are not biased against minorities.
• Blacks are seven times more likely than people of other races to commit murder.
• Blacks are eight times more likely than people of other races to commit robbery.
• When blacks commit crimes of violence, they are nearly three times more likely than non-blacks to use a gun, and more than twice as likely to use a knife.
• Blacks are an estimated 39 times more likely to commit a violent crime against a white than vice-versa, and 136 times more likely to commit robbery.
• Blacks are 2.25 times more likely to commit officially-designated hate crimes against whites than vice versa.
• Of the nearly 770,000 violent interracial crimes committed every year involving blacks and whites, blacks commit 85 percent and whites commit 15 percent.
We also learn that whites constitute 72.4 percent of America’s population but constitute 35.6 percent of all recipients of Aid for Dependent Children (AFDC). Blacks constitute about 12.9 percent of America’s population but constitute 37.2 percent of AFDC recipients. One argument loudly forwarded by black “leaders” is that whites make up the majority of welfare recipients. That fact is true from an absolute numbers perspective, but not from a percentage of the American population perspective.
What does all of this mean? Blacks are going to have to save themselves.
Blacks are not helped by the claim that all their problems are racially motivated. Black-on-black crime is not the fault of “whitey.” Out-of-wedlock births are not the fault of whites. High dropout rates among blacks are not the fault of whites. The solution is not to cry “racism” and blame everything on whites. And blacks won’t find a solution to their problems by appealing to the government.
Welfare programs have done a lot to suppress black families by subsidizing family fragmentation and promoting multi-generational dependency. So cast off your shackles of government dependency and work to correct problems. Will you receive help from “whitey?” Yes, but we non-guilt-ridden whites won’t do it if the answer is going to be more government, guilt, and charges of “racism” every time you don’t like what’s being offered as a solution. Black problems aren’t solved by naming streets after Martin Luther King, Jr. or declaring a national King Holiday or a Black History Month. These are liberal crumbs to appease the black community, but have any of these actions actually helped blacks solve any problems?
It was Obama who said he would heal America’s racial divide. Well, we certainly have a racial divide now, and Obama continues to exacerbate it.
To paraphrase FDR, “the only thing you [blacks] have to lose are your chains of dependency and victimhood.”
Education: People who attended public school in the 1960s and early 1970s experienced an educational system far different from that of today. In the ’60s and early ’70s, teachers still had authority to actually teach and discipline students. If a student turned in failing work, teachers didn’t hesitate to assign an F or even hold a student back a grade.
Educators believed that education was more important than making students feel good about themselves. It wasn’t uncommon for a teacher and/or school administrator to use corporal punishment on disruptive students when necessary.
Today’s teachers have no authority. They aren’t allowed to use corporal punishment, or to do anything that will injure student self-image or self-esteem. Many public schools have become a training center for a quite liberal social agenda.
As a result, confidence in public schools has fallen to a new low of 29 percent. That number was 58 percent in 1973.
Americans lost more and more confidence in public schools as schools turned away from sound teaching and toward social training grounds, as they replaced teaching sound moral values with decadence and promiscuity, as they rewrote American history and replaced it with secular lies.
The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a division of the U.S. Department of Education, periodically administers the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) to American students in grades 4, 8, and 12. In all subject areas, private-school students consistently score well above the national average. According to the NCES, in 2006, in grades 4 and 8 for both reading and mathematics, students in private schools achieved at higher levels than students in public schools. Only through “adjusting” for student attributes such as ethnicity, family income, and English language proficiency, as well as the skill and experience of the teaching staff, was the NCES able to get public school student performances up to or higher than private school students.
As a result, more parents are opting to put their kids in private schools, where they can be taught the basics, but also can be taught morals and values they wouldn’t learn in public schools.
Will liberals ever wake up and face the facts that their ideas and policies don’t work? How many times must they be shown that policies they implement have never worked? You would think that fifty years would be long enough for them to view the results of their labors. But in the face of what their policies have wrought, their only response is that America has not spent enough money! For liberals, evidence be damned — it’s their policies that count.
Wow, Dr. Beatty, all the way here from The Corvette Forum! http://forums.corvetteforum.com/politics-religion-and-controversy/3084867-will-american-liberals-ever-wake-up.html
Will liberals ever wake up and face the facts that their ideas and policies don’t work?
One Daniel Finkelstein in the Times about recent European elections (Italy, France, Greece) wrote that “voters went to the polls to see if they agreed that 2+2=4 and decided that they did not. Simple arithmetic ran for office, and lost.” The left is content to run the ship into the ground, the train off the tracks, and allow the poop to hit the fan rather than face facts. In other words, they are on a perpetual mission impossible which they’ll abandon only to the extent that they finally run out of other people’s money to spend; i.e., when we go broke.
“…they are on a perpetual mission impossible which they’ll abandon only to the extent that they finally run out of other people’s money to spend; i.e., when we go broke.”
So of course you’re asking your Congress Critters and other well-paid and -insured public servants to give up their pensions and health-care insurance, right? Because of course that’s our money too……
Congress Critters and other well-paid and -insured public servants
Another Loan-Guarantee Recipient Bites the Dust
By Veronique de Rugy
June 29, 2012 4:57 P.M. Comments3
Remember Solyndra? The Washington Times reports that Abound Solar, maker of solar panels and recipient of a $400 million loan guarantee from the Federal Government, announced Thursday that it would file for bankruptcy. The cost to taxpayers: roughly $70 million. Obviously, it doesn’t compare to the $538 million that the Solyndra bankruptcy will cost taxpayers but $70 million is still a big deal.
Good column on McMahon today but you failed to answer the important question.
What has changed? Why does McMahon think she can Bozo bin the mainstream media and call them irrelevant?
Is it the hypocrisy of the porn issue and the years of Courant sex trafficking of minors and the JI’s years of advertising for adult stores and services?
Is it the growth of New Media outlets and web advertising and debates and non-stop campaign coverage and youtube rendering the editorial interview an outdated format favored by butts that need to get in the field and earn their right to candidate access?
It’s the type of thing that sells well in a populist campaign. “McMahon Bozo bins the Courant, JI and MSM. Declares them dead and out-of-touch.”
You know….Linda might win this thing yet and the irony is it isn’t the money it’s the timing.
Time to Do the Right Thing: End Sugar Quotas
By Veronique de Rugy
July 2, 2012 4:07 P.M. Comments0
In recent years we have seen Republicans, with the usual exceptions, vote along party lines against big signature Democratic laws such as the president’s health-care or the stimulus bills. But it’s not enough. There are many other votes that escape public scrutiny but are just as important. For instance, in the last few weeks we have seen Republicans in the Senate and the House vote to support a series of corporate-welfare programs in spite of the consequences that cronyism has for our country. Here are a few examples:
The Ex-Im Bank (147 Republicans in the House voted to support its re-authorization.)
The $200 million Essential Air Service program subsidizes airlines to provide service to rural communities (77 House Republicans voted to keep the program alive.)
The Economic Development Administration (104 Republicans voted to keep the program alive.)
HUD’s Community Development block grants (156 House Republicans voted against an amendment to get rid of it, including Representative Paul Ryan.)
HUD’s loan-guarantee program (114 Republicans voted against getting rid of it.)
DOE’s 1705 loan-guarantee programs (127 House Republicans voted to defeat an amendment to shut down the program.)
I could go on and on. Unfortunately, I can promise that the list will grow in the next few weeks. For instance, the Farm Bill is now in the House. As you know, the nearly $1 trillion bill with its Depression-era and new subsidies cleared the Senate floor recently (with 16 Senate Republicans voting for it). One of the worst cronyism features in the Senate bill is the protection granted to the sugar industry. As I explained:
The tragedy is that while cronyism benefits the haves, all other Americans — especially those with lower incomes — suffer from the resulting distortions. Take the domestic sugar industry as an example. The government protects its producers against foreign competitors by imposing U.S. import quotas, and against low prices generally with a no-recourse loan program that serves as an effective price-floor. As a result of these government actions, U.S. consumers and businesses have had to pay twice the world price of sugar on average since 1982, according to economist Mark Perry.
The irony is that the USDA also spends $80 billion a year trying to alleviate the high costs of food of poorer Americans through programs such as food stamps for 46 million Americans. The one hand takes, and the other gives.
Again, many of us sat and watched as the Senate voted to protect the sugar industry with the help of 16 GOP senators (including tea-party darling Marco Rubio). But is it the role of the federal government to help protect the artificially high profits of the sugar industry — including the Fanjul family, which controls Florida Crystals Inc. and Domino Sugar, which owns more than 400,000 acres of sugar-cane farms and produces one-third of Florida’s sugar at the expense of consumers? Absolutely not. Yet lawmakers, on a bipartisan basis, continue to support the cronies.
Of course, the fact that the sugar industry spends millions in lobbying might be one reason. The U.S. sugar lobby contributes millions of dollars to political campaigns to maintain federal support for the subsidies, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. The Fanjul family alone spent $715,000 on lobbying in 2008 and has spent an estimated $2.6 million on political campaigns from 1979 to 2006.
So now we need to pay attention to what representatives will do when amendments are introduced to end this recurring special treatment of a handful of large sugar producers. I hope that compromises and special-interest politics won’t be on the menu this time.