Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Odds and ends

Sotomayor confirmation:

Being elected to the Senate is harder (well, more expensive) than being elected to the House. In most Congressional Districts, a trained monkey could be elected -- indeed, might have a distinct advantage, provided it threw its excrement at the right people. Senators, however, must rise at least to the level of Zippy the Chimp.

Will they make Sotomayor take a drug test? I don't see how she could have withstood those questions without tranquilizers to help her stay calm and amphetamines to keep her awake.

Goldman-Sachs profits:

Now that Lehman and Bear-Stearns are gone and Merrill-Lynch is a subsidiary of the moribund B of A, Goldman-Sachs is the only game in town. Although they've put aside money to pay anticipated executive bonuses, those won't come due until the end of the fiscal year -- and who knows what might happen next quarter?

Is it conceivable that Goldman's execs will agree their bonuses should be tied to long-term growth, or that the federal government will force the issue? Don't hold your breath.

California:

When LaFolette and his Progressives fought for the referendum process way back when, they never foresaw contemporary California. Starting with Proposition 13, back in 1978, the referendum process in California has driven the state into total dysfunction. Spend enough money and you can get Californians to support any vaguely populist sounding bullshit you like. Then you can just stand back and watch the state go a bit further down the crapper. Hell, you don't even have to live there!

While the Governator counts down to the end of his political career, a particularly pernicious little piece of shit by the name of Ted Hilton is building his reputation by abusing children. In the meanwhile, I've read that current Attorney General and former governor Jerry Brown is interested in being governor again -- along with a bunch of other characters whose motivations are beyond ordinary human comprehension.

I'm usually opposed to state constitutional conventions, because they almost always do more harm than good. In the case of California, though . . .

Meanwhile, in New York...

I don't know the extent to which outsiders are following what a wrestling promoter probably would call the Amazing Idiocy in Albany, but it's pretty idiotic. I'm sure a lot of New Yorkers were wishing they had Spitzer back, whores and all, but it's starting to look like Patterson is getting things in hand.

Constitutional or not, Richard Ravitch was an inspired choice for Lieutenant Governor, and you couldn't find a better choice than Jay Walder to replace Ravitch at the MTA. Both sleazy outer-borough city Dems who defected to the Republicans are back in the fold now, I'd say in large part due to Patterson's actions, and some urgently needed legislation actually might get passed when everybody gets back from vacation.

New York hasn't changed much since the days of Boss Tweed, but at least it has rules. They're corrupt rules, but, in their corrupt way, rational. All in all, I'd rather be here than in California.

1 comment:

sealharvey said...

Vic,

My type of cynicism. Yep sure a can of worms. You could never be in politics. You tell the truth.

Rich