|Nutmeggers might attend First Night|
Festivities but there isn't much to
celebrate given CT realities
I can't remember a year that seemed to contain as many hardships or negative situations as this single year. Many of my friends lost their jobs, and some even lost their homes or filed for bankruptcy due to our miserable economy which seemed only to worsen as the days went by. At least one person I know, lost their home due to the Tropical Storm, dozens more saw extensive property damage from either the tropical storm flooding, or the early snowstorm.
Along with near double-digit unemployment courtesy of our inept political figures, we saw a real hardening of people's attitudes. Without a doubt, people have become bitter, angry, short-tempered, and pessimistic about every little thing. And I'm not talking about natural tongue and cheek pessimism (as you read in this column), but a kind of societal mental fatigue radiating pure doom and gloom. Friends I know seem to have trouble making small talk because they are either preoccupied with their personal plights, or have become depressed wholesale - it's no wonder drug companies are making millions. People who I used to look to for optimism or advice to help me look at the bright side, seem to have none to offer. Worse, among my circle of friends and acquaintances, the stress of life in general tipped several couples to file for divorce - adding complexity to an already difficult situation.
From an overall career perspective, I've found people are less satisfied in their careers now then as seen in past years, but the notion of simply running out and finding a new job if you don't like your current one is a thing of the past. The sky is the limit has been replaced with "You're lucky to have a job." As the economy squeezes corporations, companies have moved to the disgraceful strategy of overseas outsourcing, and opportunities for promotablility, or bonuses in the workplace have disappeared. The glass ceiling - the one where you could look up and allegedly see others being rewarded - has been replaced with a concrete barrier. In 2011, I've seen more demotions, and early exits than anything else. And tuition reimbursement? Stock rewards? That's a thing of the past too. And customer service? It's hard to get a guy making 50 cents an hour in India to understand the inconvenience of having your $1500 television burn out. Yes, ma'am, I understand. I apologize for your difficulty. Bulls***!
Politically, we are in a quagmire so deep that we cannot even begin to see the light, never mind crawl out of the hole. President Obama is a buffoon. And to think that people still make fun of President George W. Bush after watching months and months of Obama idiocy is unreal. Everything Barack says or does makes things worse; the stock market tumbles at his every utterance. He takes credit for things that have nothing to do with him - like killing tyrants, and places blame on everyone else preceding him or opposing him for things such as - double-digit unemployment. He's is a liar, a snark, a cheat, and an arrogant incompetent. His audacity knows no bounds. The sooner he is gone, the better off we'll all be - and he can take Joe Biden back to the asylum he came from. Even Democrats watching their 401ks shrink seem to understand this. Unlike Bill Clinton, who I believe truly cared about America - this President doesn't give a damn about anyone but himself. You think Jimmy Carter is an annoying ex-President, oh just wait. This guy is going be obnoxious to the point of public ridicule.
In Connecticut, we've elected an anti-business Governor named Dan Malloy who is a shill for unions and public employees. As more jobs move out of Connecticut, and people cannot make ends meet, he (and his Democrat friends) have decided to raise taxes on the few that still have a few measily dollars coming in - playing a sort of shell game with the little disposable income that remains on the table. Our decline will continue because the proven formula for actual revenue generation will never be considered as an option; it would mean going against their embraced political ideology - tax and spend, and spread the pain (a.k.a sacrifice). And it's - that simple. This past year is just the beginning of what we can expect for the next three years. There is a reason his popularity rating as Governor is the lowest among his peers across the country.
Our CTGOP politicians are no help, in fact - they are the Governor's best ally. They offer no tangible alternatives, and have all but given up on playing the role of opposition. At the end of the day, they sign on to the Governor's plans with the hope of being able to profit slightly from giving the appearance of being part of the pretended solution. And they even go as far as to hold press conferences about it, leaving Republican voters sick to their stomachs. They are an embarrassing lot more interested in lining their own pockets with cash, and favors, instead of standing on principle. And they wonder why people don't come out and vote? It's because they don't have anyone to believe in. The truth is that in 2011 we gained a little more than we lost - none of which can be attributed to the State Party, whatesoever. A last minute email from Connecticut Republican Headquarters urging party members to vote was nothing short of pathetic. And the Connecticut Democrat's redistricting scheme in 2012 will ensure that we lose even more no matter how hard we work.
Internally, Connecticut's Republican Party is a disaster. It's true that in 2011, we elected a new Chairman and I'm sure he means well, but he's inherited a collection of do-nothings who thrive on the status quo; many are more concerned with finding ways to get him to quit or be removed in favor of the lovable old guard instead of lending a hand to turn the ship around. The level of their treachery is so great, that they no longer hide it in public.
You would have thought that 2011 would have been a year to reflect on Connecticut Republican failures during the 2010 cycle affected the Party, and would have provided us a chance to make real ethical changes to how we conduct business. The not-so-distant memory of nominating uninspiring and unqualified candidates, like Tom Foley and Linda McMahon, and the negative implications of rigging political conventions and allowing candidates to make donations to RTCs, or purchase votes through indirect and direct means, are fresh in the public mind. Nope. We've learned so little from the 2010 Convention, that we've apparently opted repeat the entire controversy again - accept it will be done on a much larger scale.
Different this time, is that the media is hot on the trail of our pay-to-play scandals and the unprecedented level of in-your-face cronyism is now public. Hammering a square peg in a round hole is likely to have embarrassing results for our Republican Party. Sad to say, after such high hopes - this will likely be Chairman Jerry Labriola's legacy. There is no free pass by playing neutral on buying votes or rigging Conventions. Either he stands up and opposes it, or he sits quietly and allows it to happen. Funny how he thinks playing Caesar will exonerate him from implication. Where have we seen this before? I'm sure Linda will find someone more than willing to play the role of Pontius Pilate for the right price - it's just a matter of who. The Resolutions to bring ethics to a rigged Convention sought by a few brave souls will be thrawted by a loophole, or by parlimentary procedures.
Linda McMahon will win her rigged convention and not even Superman can stop this run-away train going over the cliff - Joe Markley, Jerry Labriola, and Mark Boughton - all waving and cheering enthusiastically from the windows as it plunges to the bottom of the canyon - what fools! And we expect the deep divisions that already divide the Party will grow larger, and an independent candidacy of someone screwed out of a spot on the ballot will add to the drama. The United States Senate Seat is the Democrat Party's to lose. No matter how she's packaged, -a millionaire pro-wrestling promoter with baggage and no experience is still a millionaire pro-wrestling promoter with baggage and no experience. Why people would sell their hard-earned reputations for this whatever-she-is is beyond me. I guess, souls can be bought cheaply these days.
Despite warnings, the die is likely cast, and 2012 will be another banner year for Connecticut Democrats even if Barack Obama is rejected by voters in November. If Republicans edge out a win, it will likely be a consolation prize either in Connecticut's 4th or 5th Congressional District - that's if Republicans don't massacre each other first through the primary season.
So I started this column by stating how glad I am that 2011 has come and gone. With the exception of a highly anticipated GOP take-over of the White House a year from now, I'm afraid there isn't much to get excited about. I expect another year of Dannel, power-outages, outsourcing, and CTGOP Strategies of Surrender.
Love your children, take a nice vacation if you can afford it, take enjoyment from the small things in life, and pray for a miracle. From this Monarch's position, the Party is long over.
As for The King - I'll be moving on to more interesting topics. I wish my Connecticut allies well.
This original blog entry can be found at http://www.thekingsview.blogspot.com