If it keeps on rainin’ the levee’s goin’ to break

So, yes, Christie BFF Wildstein isn’t taking the fall for the whole bridge thing after all, and is now saying that he has proof Christie knew everything all along. But you knew that already. Here’s more Sandy stuff.

Christie provided nearly $4.8 million in Sandy funds to a luxury high-rise condo building project of a politically well-connected donor that is being built in New Brunswick. The city where I work. Which I can tell you is nowhere near the shore.

The grift goes on …

… and the grift goes on. Proving that nothing is more lucrative than shaking down rubes for their social security checks and reverse mortgage payments, Ben Carson is joining up with Newt’s legendary American Legacy.

Media Matters: “For the calendar year, American Legacy reports that it raised $2,035,235, and spent $2,044,022. It disbursed $42,750.00 to ‘Fed. Candidates/Committees and Other Political Committees,’ or roughly 2.1 percent of what it raised.”

The other money? “Millions to Gingrich’s ‘pals and past aides’.” Good friend to have. The only qualifications it takes it would seem to get that kind of money are lack of shame and a strong stomach. Oh, and a squawking head position on a cable news channel doesn’t hurt.


Virginia Is for Schadenfreude

There’s certainly more to be said about New Jersey and Chris Christie, but before I became a hard-and-fast Garden Stater, I was a Virginian.

So the news that now former Governor McDonnell has been indicted on 14 felony counts of accepting improper gifts while in office fills me with a bleak sort of satisfaction. It’s not entirely that the guy was an insufferable dick, but also that this represents that state finally coming around to entrenched corruption in the state-level GOP.

Hey, maybe it’d be true that McCauliffe would rise to the same level of corruption if it weren’t for the public pressure to revise Virginia’s ridiculously lax rules about money and politics, but I doubt it. There are some things that Republicans do tend to excel at.

Maybe now the southeastern states will stop being the mostly likely to elect crooks, demagogues, and idiots to their statehouses? Yeah, I didn’t think so either.

When a trickle becomes a torrent, and a torrent becomes a river.

Another federal Christie investigation, and once again, prompted by lingering accusations of abuse of the office. It’s like when a dam starts to crack, and at first there’s just a few drops, and you try to do your best and patch it quickly, and the next thing you know huge blocks of concrete are flying out in a jet spray of wild rushing water.

Chris Christie, how we loathe thee; let me count the ways.

I’ve been silent again for a while, so let me pick up where I left off. (The reasons for the silence aren’t important, just regrettable.)

Just like a boil that grows and grows, becoming more painful and more obvious, but never goes away, until it does, and then when it does the slurry of rank effluvia pouring out seems endless, Christie’s political reputation finally exploded. Lovely image, no? It’s appropriate.

So I won’t bother adding much to what’s already been clogging the Internet tubes the past few days, but here’s a list of even more little-noticed Christie scandals scrupulously scrapped from below-the-fold local coverage and overturned rocks, a few of which are familiar to anyone who follows politics and NJ but also a number of surprises. Enjoy.

If you don’t want to click, I should tell you that the list is from Politico of all places. Well, it’s Olivia Nuzzi, but still, Politico. Are the long knives coming out? Despite Christie’s now-legendary daylong press conference, are the middle-of-the-roaders and establishment GOP starting to turn on their best hope for 2016? I don’t know, and I’m not going to guess.

But do I care? There’s one scandal that no one’s been bringing up – well, it’s a scandal to me. I’m technically a New Jersey state employee, although given how much I’m paid, I can be barely considered employed. And that motherfucker cut my pay to even less. So he can burn in hell for all I care. Fuck you, Sandwiches.

invisible sandwich

invisible sandwich

Why do allegations of Christie’s corruption never get any play in the press?

Back when Christie was elected, I thought that it would only take a few months before all the dark chatter about corruption would derail his administration and, if not force a resignation, make him unlikely to run for reelection. And now we’re nearly on the eve of the election that would keep him in office, and the feeling everywhere is that his victory is inevitable to the point of not even exciting comment.

And yet this stuff from Halperin and Heilemann’s new book about the underside of the Romney campaign and the vetting of Christie as a possible VP candidate shows how close to the surface the signs of missing and misspent money, possible conflicts of interest, and shady deals have been all along:

The list of questions Myers and her team had for Christie was extensive and troubling. More than once, Myers reported back that Trenton’s response was, in effect, Why do we need to give you that piece of information? Myers told her team, We have to assume if they’re not answering, it’s because the answer is bad.

The vetters were stunned by the garish controversies lurking in the shadows of his record. There was a 2010 Department of Justice inspector general’s investigation of Christie’s spending patterns in his job prior to the governorship, which criticized him for being “the U.S. attorney who most often exceeded the government [travel expense] rate without adequate justification” and for offering “insufficient, inaccurate, or no justification” for stays at swank hotels like the Four Seasons. There was the fact that Christie worked as a lobbyist on behalf of the Securities Industry Association at a time when Bernie Madoff was a senior SIA official—and sought an exemption from New Jersey’s Consumer Fraud Act. There was Christie’s decision to steer hefty government contracts to donors and political allies like former Attorney General John Ashcroft, which sparked a congressional hearing. There was a defamation lawsuit brought against Christie arising out of his successful 1994 run to oust an incumbent in a local Garden State race. Then there was Todd Christie, the Governor’s brother, who in 2008 agreed to a settlement of civil charges by the Securities and Exchange Commission in which he acknowledged making “hundreds of trades in which customers had been systematically overcharged.” (Todd also oversaw a family foundation whose activities and purpose raised eyebrows among the vetters.) And all that was on top of a litany of glaring matters that sparked concern on Myers’ team: Christie’s other lobbying clients, his investments overseas, the YouTube clips that helped make him a star but might call into doubt his presidential temperament, and the status of his health.

Ah, yes, his temperament:

via Double Down Excerpt: Mitt Romney Feared Chris Christie\’s Baggage | TIME.com and https://twitter.com/daveweigel/status/396739207105757185.

Was Marx a Satanist?

LOL. Though the question was apparently not ludicrous to college freshman Ted Cruz when he appeared at Princeton with a copy of a book of that title under his arm. The book actually exists, and in several translations!! (Cruz had the Spanish-language version.)

This is the point where it’s worth remembering that Cruz came to college fresh from the twin sheltering influences of private religious education at Faith West Academy and the extracurricular libertarian ideological purism courtesy of the Free Market Education Foundation, a program of the Center for the American Idea, which taught high school kids the rather musty theories of Austrian economists, modeled after the educational program of the anti-communist weirdo, Glenn Beck inspiration, and crypto-fascist W. Cleon Skousen. Did I mention that Skousen was a Canadian?