New Jersey

If you haven’t read this piece on how the New Jersey Democratic Party’s commitment to big money over popular support helped create the Chris Christie phenomenon that could have major implications for Democratic control over the state legislature in upcoming elections and allow all sorts of bad policies to pass, do so.

In other words, maybe nominating wealthy capitalists like Jon Corzine instead of politicians with actual connections to the New Jersey people might not be such a good idea.

59 comments on this post.
  1. GC:

    Doesn’t this article leave out the fairly large black swan event of Corzine’s car accident?

  2. shah8:

    Have you forgotten Torricelli?

    New Jersey typically sends mostly creeps or gentry to office.

  3. Erik Loomis:

    I don’t know that it matters much for the larger issue.

  4. LeeEsq:

    New Jersey has landed gentry now? I can’t quite imagine Downtown Abby being performed in New Jersey accents.

  5. GC:

    In terms of not promoting rich scumbags to higher office, sure, don’t do it. But Corzine’s governorship was totally destroyed by the accident and his long convalescence — leaving that event out skews the case against Corzine unfairly. If the accident had never happened he could have worked the Assembly, gotten stuff done, etc; he wouldn’t look nearly so terrible. Or so I’ve gathered from my family members still living in Jersey.

  6. ScottC:

    There’s a seemingly endless supply of Frelinghuysens.

  7. Winchester:

    wealthy capitalists like Jon Corzine

    Corzine is no capitalist; he’s a moral degenerate who’s basically a sociopath and a psychopath. Meaning he doesn’t feel any sympathy or empathy for other human being.

    Corzine went into MF Global after losing to Christie looking to rape that company for his own good. He has stolen in excess of a billion dollars. Why did he do it? Is he stupid? Well, of course he’s not stupid. Corzine is a former head of Goldman Sachs; he doesn’t have a low IQ. Why in the world would a man like Corzine wake up in the morning one day and say “you know what, I think I am going to steal all the customer segregated funds in this FCM/BD that I’m running.”

    MF Global was the biggest FCM in the USA.

    Why would a man like that even engage in an evil plot like this? Because he knew going into it he could get away with it. And the reason he could get away with it is he is in tight with the Obama regime. He is one of Obama’s highest fundraisers.

    Corzine does not give a crap about anyone or anything except himself, his own personal wealth and his own personal power.

    And he’s deeply tied into the Obama regime.

    The US is no longer a nation of laws; it’s now a nation of men.

    That’s why Corzine is still a free man today. He is a crony of the regime, not a capitalist.

  8. TT:

    I would think that most Democratic politicians in the NY/NJ area who are on the up and up face enormous pressure to cater to the whims of the financial services industry and the media complex (often one and the same) for purposes of fundraising, exposure, etc. But the problems of relying on plutocracy for money and political talent generally run a lot deeper than that; recall DSCC head Bob Kerrey’s brilliant idea to recruit hordes of millionaires which led to decisive Democratic gains in ’96. Oh, wait….

  9. Erik Loomis:

    Yeah, I remember one of those Kerrey-recruited millionaires losing pathetically to Gordon Smith in Oregon.

  10. DrDick:

    In many ways this is just the story of the whole Democratic Party over the past 35-40 years, abandoning the people to chase the dollars.

  11. DrDick:

    The state hospital gave you back your internet privileges did they? Better behave better than this or they will put you back in the padded cell.

  12. Winchester:

  13. Djur:

    “Corzine is no capitalist; he’s a moral degenerate who’s basically a sociopath and a psychopath.”

    First you say he’s no capitalist, and then you say he’s a capitalist. I’m confused.

  14. Johnny Sack:

    I mean, it might sound a little hyperbolic and conspiratorial towards the end, but nothing he said about Corzine is wrong.

  15. Linnaeus:

    You know, my cousin Angus said that no Scotsman puts sugar on his porridge…

  16. Djur:

    Except for Corzine being no capitalist. He’s an exemplary capitalist, except that he made the crucial error of stealing from his fellow thieves.

  17. Murc:

    Corzine is no capitalist; he’s a moral degenerate who’s basically a sociopath and a psychopath. Meaning he doesn’t feel any sympathy or empathy for other human being.

    Being a sociopath isn’t a requirement to be a capitalist, but it sure does seem to help. And libertarians tell me that sympathy and empathy and altruism are the antithesis of capitalism and free markets.

  18. Erik Loomis:


  19. Western Dave:

    A couple things that the article hinted at but undersold. One, the money-machine alliance. Corzine’s money backing the goo-goos as opposed to the machines = no Christie. The biggest problem facing NJ is deficits tied to pension funds corrupted by double and triple dippers (mostly party hacks, not teachers). Christie’s coup has been to target teachers publicly while cracking down on the multiple office holding corruption. If he can convince Repugs in NJ to do the same and stay off the social issues and not dip into the cookie jar too much, they’ll keep NJ for twenty years. Two, NJ dems simply don’t have a deep bench. The more I look at Cory Booker the less I like him. And there’s nobody outside of Codey who looks decent and Codey might be DOA unless he finds some white knight money somewhere. It’s the same in Philly. We got Nutter as mayor but he didn’t carry a reform council with him, so he’s done little and the folks in the wings are all kinds of suckage.

  20. curiouscliche:

    Norcross and Adubato (and Sweeney) are everything that is wrong with everything.

  21. Erik Loomis:

    Booker is the ultimate self-promoting empty suit. I have no real love for Lautenberg, but Booker will beat him in 14 and then we can all look forward to a lot of centrist posturing from Booker in the Senate with the possible presidential run in 20 or 24.

  22. JKTHs:

    The concern trolling Dems shall rise again!

  23. Colin Day:

    It might have helped had Corzine deigned to wear a seat belt. Was he too high and mighty to use it?

  24. wengler:

    He used his capital to convince people to give their capital to him.

    Twas no error. He is a saint in the Church of Capitalism.

  25. wengler:

    It’s against the law for our corporate citizens to not be sociopaths. Any contribution to society not designed to improve the bottom line would be a dereliction of duty to the shareholder.

  26. Winchester:

    Corzine stole from ranchers hedging their cattle on the Futures markets, and farmers hedging their grains.

  27. wengler:

    I am skeptical about Booker, but it would be interesting to see on a larger stage. I can certainly think of better ways to pad a political resume than being mayor of Newark, despite the obvious glowing support of his friends in national media and politics.

  28. DrDick:

    A successful capitalist is always a thief. Get a clue.

  29. Erik Loomis:

    Note: you would be totally fine with this if it was a Republican.

  30. Winchester:

    No I would not. Unlike you, I’m not a partisan hack.

  31. Winchester:

    Wow. So you are a socialist indeed. Pfft.

  32. Erik Loomis:

    Outstanding. I look forward to your vigorous criticisms of how various Republican politicians make their money.

  33. wjts:

    You got something against the Dowager Duchess of Perth Amboy?

  34. Winchester:

    When there’s no active markets on, I don’t follow electoral politics much.


    Partisanship is a willful delusion; it’s the effect of a sophomoric dynamic that’s probably a direct byproduct of the sports culture.
    Saying “I’m a Bruins fan” is the same thing mentally as saying “I’m a Republican”, “I’m a Democrat”.

    Go Team !!

    Rah-rah Obama !! Rah-rah Ryan !!

    This is a twisted gang mentality, providing — I’m guessing — a substitute virility so that all of the low-IQ, castrated men have an outlet for what remaining vestiges of virility they harbor.


    Thing is, partisans of both sides are blinded: the Republic is DEAD, or as Brian Massumi put it:

    Exceptions to the rule are becoming integrated into the rules. Legal outs into extra-legal actions are being written into the law. Holes for arbitrarily decided preemptive action are being sewn into the fabric of our institutions. The exception to the rule is becoming the rule.

  35. Winchester:

    “For the poor you have always with you.”
    – Jesus Christ

    Does He mean, “Forget the poor! Live it up!” Nope. He is saying that in all free societies, wealth will always unfold within a SPECTRUM.

    A poor person in the USA has a standard of living that would be considered luxurious in India. The notions of “wealth” and “poverty” exist within a SPECTRUM.

    Jesus is saying that that spectrum will always exist.

    There’ll always be a top-end, and there’ll always be a bottom-end.

    In some nations, that spectrum is very, very broad and reaches very, very far down into poverty. There are billionaires in India, and there are people starving in the gutters in rags.

    In the U.S., we have a wealth spectrum, but the low-end is WAY HIGHER and the spectrum is much narrower.

    Someone is always going to have more money and assets than somebody else.

    It’s impossible to have a free society wherein every person has the same level of wealth. Someone has to be the business OWNER, and someone has to be the EMPLOYEE. Someone has to be the wage PAYER and someone has to be the wage EARNER. If everyone in a culture was economically equal at all times, there would be zero employment because no one would work for anyone except themselves.

    Free-market capitalist societies are the closest humanity has ever been to the ideal: a healthy wealth spectrum that’s moving higher through growth and technological advancements and innovations, and that’s open-ended on the top side, but has an intrinsic ethics such that the top-end of the wealth spectrum makes certain that the bottom end advances apace and that the spectrum maintains its proportional width — or even narrows a bit, via charity AND through a lawful society that allows for movement both up AND down the spectrum.

    Trapping people on the low-end is equally as evil as the patrician upper-classes who think themselves immune from morality, the rule of law or personal responsibility.

  36. wengler:

    Charity is not now nor ever has been a path for people to gain prosperity. Much the opposite in fact, as it establishes patron-client relationships and aggrandizes a very narrow spectrum of society.

    It’s impossible to have a free society wherein every person has the same level of wealth.

    This is simply an untrue statement. Humans used to all exist in societies where everyone was on the same level of wealth. It was until agricultural societies developed that wealth started to be concentrated.

    I’m unsure what your concept of ‘free’ is, but quite the opposite of what you said is true. It’s impossible to be a free society with concentrations of wealth for very obvious reasons.

    You really need to start read something other than Glenn Beck.

  37. Jordan:

    I keep hearing this, but it seems quite wrong and pushed by people who aren’t from New Jersey and probably just get the random national headline. Booker is certainly self-promoting. But an empty suit? A centrist posturing type? Neither of those things seem remotely true. So, citation please.

  38. filthy lucre:

    a Dem from western New York who became the new Senator Pothole might have a chance to keep Wall Street at bay

  39. Tony Coelho:

    You could not be more wrong.

  40. Ramon A. Clef:

    You could not be more wrong about the meaning of that quotation. Jesus was not shrugging his shoulders and saying, “Poor people, what are ya gonna do?”

  41. Western Dave:

    He’s done a lot of his reform in Newark by setting up foundations that get money from folks like Zuckerberg (see also: charter schools). It’s fine as a short term solution but I haven’t seen long term solution stuff, except in housing where his record is quite strong. Getting rid of background checks for city jobs was also nice but these are both first term stuff. What are the major second term accomplishments?

  42. LeeEsq:

    She snubbed my patron, the Earl of Princeton, by not going to his garden party.

  43. LeeEsq:

    We really need a drum roll for this site.

  44. DrDick:

    Really? Ever hear of the DLC or the New Democrats? Do try to pay attention. You might also provide some actual evidence.

  45. DrDick:

    You, on the other hand, are a Chritofascist loon. Now go crawl back under your rock and put your hair shirt back on.

  46. DrDick:

    True, a partisan hack would be a major upgrade. You are a far right Christian Dominionist moronic loon and a threat to civilization.

  47. elm:

    He increased the size of the city government and gave raises to all city workers except those making more than $100,000, both at a time when stimulus was needed but most state and local governments were downsizing, furloughing workers, cutting salary, etc.

    He’s certainly a grand-stander, he said some mealy-mouthed things on Meet the Press once, and he flirts with school reform more than one would like (though he hasn’t implemented any of the Rhee policies as far as know except to increase charter schools, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing), but I don’t quite get the certainty that Erik and others have that he’s some sort of Joe Lieberman or Andrew Cuomo waiting to happen.

  48. Hogan:

    Maybe you can point us to your jeremiads and philippics about Romney last year.

  49. DrDick:

    Rabbi Yeshua bar Yosef proclaimed that you must sell all you own and give it to the poor (all the poor, not just the “deserving” poor) to follow him. He also commanded all his followers to live modestly and hold all their possessions in common. You will be on the left hand of the Lord come Judgment Day (Matthew 41-46).

  50. The Dark Avenger:

    Dr Dick, if this is the real Tony Coehlo, ex-congressman from the interior of CA, then he has clearly not learned from his experience in electoral politics:

    In 1989, Coelho resigned from the House after six terms in the wake of press reports that he had received a loan from a savings and loan executive to purchase junk bonds. He was not charged with any crime.[7

  51. efgoldman:

    There aren’t enough pancakes on the East Coast.

  52. Cody:

    At least you’re honest.

    You don’t say “capitalism isn’t about stealing from the poor”, you say “You’re a socialist!”

    I’m glad you accept what our current economic system is. Now if you would just accept that this is a good reason not to worship the rich…

  53. DrDick:

    I suspect a parody, making your same point, that went right over my head as I had never heard of him and was too lazy to Google him.

  54. socraticsilence:

    “Obama Regime” – explain to me please how a democratically elected constitutionally bound government constitutes a regime in this case- I mean if you wanted to argue that Bush’s first term was a regime- I’d say you were going to far despite its excesses and its essentially appointed nature but at least you’d have a case, Obama is if anything too deferential to congress in many cases.

  55. mpowell:

    This is one of the major downsides of having only one reasonable national party. It gives more free reign to the Democratic party to be ever more corrupt with little opportunity for voters to address the situation.

  56. The Dark Avenger:

    He was an up-and-coming figure in California and national politics until he resigned. That you never heard of him isn’t surprising, he’s been out of circulation for over 20 years.

  57. parody:

    Coelho is often cited as having begun the party’s embrace of corporate money when he headed the DCCC in 1980 and then became majority whip.

  58. Jordan:

    right, exactly this.

  59. Ed K:

    It’s essentially impossible to overstate how completely the power-players within the NJ Democratic party are in bed with any corporate entity that gives them a wink and a smile.

    Sweeney is…really…difficult to swallow as a Democrat, as anything, really, other than a complete pig. And I really have yet to hear about a state level Dem in NJ that doesn’t inspire a similar response.

    It’s a bad, bad scene.

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