“No Man’s life liberty or property is safe while the legislature is in session”.

- attributed to NY State Judge Gideon Tucker

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Ted Kaufman- Instant Senate Mossback

Delaware's appointed Democratic Senator Ted Kaufman was on CNBC again this morning, blowing hot air as hard as usual.

There are several things about Kaufman which astound me. First, he tries to come off as an outsider appointed to fill Biden's last two years. But as his bio reveals, Kaufman has been an aide to Biden for nearly two decades, first working for him as a volunteer in the latter's first Senate campaign.

Recently, though not an attorney, Kaufman has been teaching a course concerning "The Congress" at his undergraduate alma mater, Duke's law school. From this, Kaufman seems to have acquired a patina of academic and non-partisan nature. Neither of which is true.

But Kaufman is not leaving politics after next January. Instead, he's been tapped by the current Democratic Senate leadership to replace financial-scold-in-chief, Elizabeth Warren, as head of the TARP oversight committee. Other than his anti-Wall Street disposition, Kaufman has no particular background whatsoever for this position.

In fact, to the contrary, Kaufman is completely naive and wrong-headed about the sector. He blabbered about how there was no regulation in 2008. That's simply untrue. In prior posts of mine, and elsewhere in business literature. many have noted that we had more than enough regulators and regulations. What we didn't have was effective people doing their jobs when already sufficiently empowered to do so.

So much for enlightened leadership from the new TARP oversight comittee head. He's an idiot who has no understanding of what he's about to oversee.

This is all of interest to me because, in the many appearances Kaufman has made on CNBC's morning program, he is introduced as a novice appointed Senator and academic. Clearly gross misrepresentation. In fact, Kaufman is a Delaware Democratic political hack who has served Biden since his first election to the Senate.

Thus, Kaufman's raging anti-business comments are positioned by the on-air staff as those of moderate near-non-partisan Senator.

This morning, for example, they bemoaned his leaving the Senate, grouping him with Evan Bayh and a few other retiring Democrats as the moderates who would be necessary to forge compromise in the new Senate.

Nevermind that there's been two years of take-no-prisoners, uncompromising legislative stiff-arming by the Democrats.

Kaufman went on to savage Republicans and laugh about how they are leaderless, when asked to handicap the prospects of various potential presidential candidates in the GOP.

For what it's worth, the GOP has a history of nominating candidates from among a large field, who have frequently gone on to the White House. This was certainly true of George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan. Even Nixon, for that matter.

Anyway, I began the post thinking that Kaufman was some outsider from Delaware who became a cynical, hacked-up mossback in just 20+ months. Now, however, I realize he's had nearly two decades of training on Senate staffs and in political election fights.

He did become a Senate mossback instantly. But after reviewing his past, it's understandable, because he is precisely the sort of Senator most Americans no longer want in office, i.e., a man who's been a professional political aide for nearly two decades. Feeding at the public trough while adding nothing of any particular or notable value.

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