Facebook and the power to influence millions of voters

The recent testimony of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is being portrayed as the response of our political class to invasions of user privacy. But this is really about the political classes’ realization that Facebook has the power to organize voters and skew elections based on the preferences of Zuckerberg and his minions.

You are invited April 18 for real talk, real action on climate change

Young people are conscious about the threat of climate change. We know that this fight isn’t about our far-off future; it’s about our today. It’s about what we are willing to tolerate in the present moment and what we cannot afford to ignore any longer. Just as Florida’s Parkland School survivors are taking a stand for their own safety, the young people of Connecticut can take a stand for climate justice and a rapid transition to renewable energy.

Feeling sorry for Hope Hicks? Don’t.

President Donald Trump’s former communications director, Hope Hicks, comes off pretty well when compared to the cabal of con men, cretins, tricksters and ne’er-do-wells that otherwise orbit the president. So it’s tempting for Trump’s critics to express a degree of sympathy for the former fashion model and native of Greenwich, Conn., whose reputation is for inner strength and quiet perseverance.

Weapons of war do not belong in citizens’ hands

I agree totally with Carol Rizzolo [Connecticut gun laws work, April 6]. Weapons of war do not belong in the hands of our citizenry. The mistaken notion that all who favor banning these weapons want a repeal of the Second Amendment is simply an emotional scare tactic.  Connecticut has made great progress in enacting gun safety legislation, but there remains much to do.  Our children deserve safety in their schools and we all deserve safe houses of worship, theaters,  concert venues  and streets.

The Republican cause: legitimizing Democratic ideas

After the latest judicial confirmation process, I’m am convinced that Republicans (as a party, not necessarily individuals who identify with the party) exist to legitimize the progressive, experimental nature of the Democratic party. It’s a parasitism, symbiotic relationship I suppose.  Look closely, and you’ll see what I mean…

Connecticut’s gun laws work

March 24th our students here in Guilford joined students across Connecticut and the nation to address their safety and the menace of irresponsible gun ownership with intelligence and passion. Perhaps it’s time we examine the progress we have made in Connecticut. We have one of the toughest sets of gun safety regulations of any state in the nation.

Let’s move the Capitol back to New Haven

For those of you who blinked and missed it, you just gave Hartford a $550-million-dollar bailout courtesy of Connecticut’s elected leadership. They refused to let our state’s capital go bankrupt. Instead, our governor and legislators established Connecticut’s Municipal Accountability Review Board (MARB) and imbued it with super powers to save key municipalities from self-destruction. Therefore, since this is the recipe for success, there is only one thing that can be done.

The red herring in the Fiscal Stability Commission’s impressive report

With the many and varied issues the state of Connecticut currently faces, our legislature can ill afford wasting time on any issue that will not contribute to immediate fiscal relief or long-term fiscal health.  The new report issued by the Commission on Fiscal Stability and Economic Growth outlines a number of critical issues that demand action, all intended to improve the state’s fiscal standing. Unfortunately, the report also includes suggested changes to collective bargaining for public employees: changes far more likely to distract from larger problems than to result in significant savings to the state.

Fighting for students, fighting with students

The tragic shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School has forced a national reckoning. The images of that fateful day continue to haunt me, and sweeping regulations on gun purchases and use are long overdue. But the shooting and its aftermath are about something more than guns. The past few weeks have reinforced one of my deepest beliefs, which inspired me to commit my life to public service in the first place: young people are the vanguard of progress.

In Esty’s decision not to run, morality and politics coalesce

Now that Elizabeth Esty has said she won’t run for reelection in November, Connecticut Republicans are hoping they can pick up the state’s 5th District Congressional seat. They believe they have the advantage for two reasons. One, the Democratic governor is monumentally unpopular. Dannel Malloy, who is also not seeking reelection in November, is the least liked governor in the entire country. Two, Esty is leaving under a cloud of controversy. Last week, she conceded to being complicit in a former chief of staff’s sexual and physical assault of a female aide.

Further privatize the VA? Not on my watch

Last week’s dismissal of U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary David Shulkin undoubtedly will renew the long-standing debate over privatization of Veteran healthcare. It’s no secret the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has had its problems, as the inspector general’s report on Shulkin’s personal use of travel funds has revealed. Other high-profile debacles, like the wait-times scandal at the Phoenix VA in 2014 and, more recently, the staggering cost overrun of the Denver VA, have caused an erosion of the VA’s brand in the public eye. Yet for all these administrative difficulties — real or perceived — further privatization of VA care is not the solution we need.