Every other week, John J. Ryan, our former Republican state representative, and Joshua Fisher, former Darien Times Fisher, share their back-and-forth about news going on around the state, among other items of interest. Links to all the articles and other items mentioned in the column can be found in the Opinion section of DarienTimes.com.
Ryan: The summer is gone, school is in session, and who would have thought that the editor’s Cincinnati Redlegs would have a bigger division lead at the beginning of September than the Bronx Bombers?
Fisher: Besides trying to get Reds playoff tickets (which can be harder than getting Yankees playoff tickets, believe it or not) the presidential nominations are becoming official and it looks like we’re watching an exciting race — both for the White House and the American League East Division. But I’m still watching both from afar.
Ryan: And I would have thought that one of the perks of a big media position would be a junket to cover those national political conventions! And speaking of traveling, I am certain you have been following our governor’s schedule? See “Gov. Malloy visits Lyman Orchards today” (MyRecordJournal.com, Aug. 23) and “Malloy defends campaign trip to New Hampshire for Obama” (TheDay.com, Aug. 27).
Fisher: Other than watching conversations with empty chairs, I think you’d need a time machine to cover an actually interesting national convention. Today’s political infomercials are about as exciting as — and less dramatic than — a rain delay.
Perhaps Gov. Malloy is staying away from Hartford to avoid the ongoing poor economic news in the state? For if there is any good news, you would surely share it with us.
Ryan: Good news is something we never get enough of — and nothing would make me happier if there could be some. But when a distinguished business organ such as Barron’s does a feature on the fiscal situation of the 50 states (Barrons.com, Aug. 27), and even includes charts —
Editor: How did I know to look for Connecticut at the very bottom of the chart? But our state-wide media had other equally non-encouraging news, I saw.
Ryan: Correct; see “Study questions if Connecticut emerged from recession” (CTMirror.org, Aug. 29) and “Report: Conn. economy weaker than experts believed” (WTNH.com, Aug. 29)
Don’t forget, dear reader, that when you read this column online, the editor provides links to all the articles mentioned so you can see for yourself.
Fisher: Maybe there will be more national figures coming here to campaign in the Constitution State and bring some revenue to local caterers.
Ryan: If so, they would seem not to be helpful to our local towns: “DNC refuses to reimburse town for thousands of dollars of overtime costs during Obama visit” (FoxNews.com, Aug. 22).
But perhaps someone could charter “the Rent” for a big campaign rally, since that upstate stadium sure needs the business. See “Rentschler Field Operating At A Loss; Officials Hope For More Events” (Courant.com, Aug. 30).
Fisher: There seems to be no end to the various ways that our state government and its assorted agencies and subsidiaries can lose money. Good thing they don’t run newspapers.
Ryan: Unfortunately in our limited space, we can only highlight a few areas, and hopefully our trusty readers note the wide variety of different media sources that we refer to, so that they can “do their own homework,” and as voters and taxpayers, draw their own conclusions about what their state government is, and could be doing! Here is another item to consider: “Vigilance Needed On State Disability Pensions” (Courant.com, Aug. 31).
I’m glad to know that our vigilant editor has an equally generous employment package.
Fisher: I haven’t been an editor long enough here in New Canaan to be “vested” — barring any special summer votes.
But I think my major editorial benefit is that if I get this paper out each week, I get to come back to my luxurious cubical next week. And we are running out of room. So what else do you have?
Ryan: How better to conclude than with another chart? I was not aware that our readers were cheapskates, see “Who Gives To Charity? Not Folks In Blue States” (CapitolWatch, Aug. 20).
This Hartford Courant blog entry summarizes yet another study, and guess where Connecticut is on this chart? And for pithy views on many of the topics covered above, who better than Chris Powell with “Rx for state’s decline: a lot more of the same” (NCAdvertiser.com, Sept. 4).
Fisher: You have given me a positive thought; maybe I can get those Reds playoff tickets for Great American Ball Park next month.
John J. Ryan is of counsel to the Darien law firm Tibbetts, Keating & Butler, and served 14 years as Darien and Rowayton’s state representative. Joshua Fisher is editor of the New Canaan Advertiser, a Hersam Acorn Newspaper. A former Darien resident, he was Darien Times Fisher for seven years.