Wednesday, 04 March 2015

DOWNHILLARY RACER?

Ken Berwitz

This is an easy blog to write...because I'm not writing anything, just posting a series of links I pulled from the always-invaluable drudge report (www.drudgereport.com):

SELF SERVER...

HDR22@CLINTONEMAIL.COM...

Private System Listed Under Mysterious, Untraceable Name...

Striking resemblance to longtime Clinton aide...

System said able to erase messages completely...

NYT: Email ruse thwarted information requests...

This is bad.  Very bad.  So bad that venues which have protected Hillary Clinton for years and years are not doing so now. 

Will it be enough to bring her presidential candidacy down - the one many (not all) of us assume she intends to run?

Will there be more revelations?  She better hope not, because they most assuredly would make her look worse, not better. 

Put another way, this scandal puts Ms. Clinton on a downhill  - make that a downHillary course...but one in which crossing the finish line would make her a loser, not a winner.

Keep watching...this is far from over.

@ 16:37 PM   Add Comment

FERGUSON RACISM, WILSON EXONERATION

Ken Berwitz

Yesterday there was a leak that the Justice Department - with great media fanfare - is about to issue a "scathing" report suggesting there is systematic racism in the Ferguson, Missouri police department.  The charges stem from, among other things, extremely high percentages of traffic stops and searches being conducted against Black citizens versus Whites.  I'll reserve judgment until the report is issued and we can all take a look at it.  I hope you do too.

But here is an interesting coincidence.  This leak has overwhelmed a report - not a leak, but the actual report - which not only exonerates Officer Darren Wilson for the shooting death of Michael Brown, but makes most witnesses who told police that Wilson was at fault to be either remarkably consistent in not seeing what was in front of their eyes, or flat-out lying.

From Matt Apuzzo's just-published article on the New York Times web site:

The Justice Department has cleared a Ferguson, Mo., police officer of civil rights violations in the shooting of Michael Brown, a black teenager whose death set off racially charged and sometimes violent protests last year.

The decision, which was announced on Wednesday, ends a lengthy investigation into the shooting last August, in which Officer Darren Wilson shot and killed Mr. Brown in the street. Many witnesses said Mr. Brown had his hands up in surrender when he died, leading to nationwide protest chants of "Hands up, don't shoot."

But federal agents and civil rights prosecutors rejected that story, just as a state grand jury did in November. The Justice Department said forensic evidence and other witnesses backed up the account of Officer Wilson, who said Mr. Brown fought with him, reached for his gun, then charged at him. He told investigators that he feared for his life.

The report found that witnesses who claimed that Mr. Brown was surrendering were not credible. "Some of those accounts are inaccurate because they are inconsistent with the physical and forensic evidence; some of those accounts are materially inconsistent with that witnesses' own prior statements with no explanation," it said.

"Although some witnesses state that Brown held his hands up at shoulder level with his palms facing outward for a brief moment, these same witnesses describe Brown then dropping his hands and 'charging' at Wilson," it added.

"Those witness accounts stating that Brown never moved back toward Wilson could not be relied upon in a prosecution because their accounts cannot be reconciled with the DNA bloodstain evidence and other credible witness accounts."

In other words, the claim that Brown's shooting, which generated months and months of protests, arson, looting and general violence - complete with a "Hands Up Don't Shoot" narrative - was a complete fraud.  A lie.  A hoax.  A made-up crock of BS.

I have a question for you.  What if the situation were reversed?  What if the forensic evidence proved that Officer Wilson had shot Michael Brown while he had his hands up in surrender, after a bunch of White "witnesses" lied by saying no such thing happened?  What would media be saying about those witnesses?  About the lying racist Whites of Ferguson, Missouri?

Think about your answer.  Then look to see if it in any way coincides with how media will be treating this story.  And keep thinking racism...just a different version of it.

@ 14:41 PM   Add Comment

CHRAZY CHRIS STRIKES AGAIN

Ken Berwitz

In case you are wondering why I call him Chrazy Chris.....

The latest reason is Chris Matthews' reaction to Benjamin Netanyahu being invited to speak before a joint session of congress and wowing them - virtually all Republicans and a majority of Democrats as well - with his common sense and logic. Mr. Netanyahu made no demands on the USA, set no ultimatums, and was extremely deferential to President Obama (which Obama will never, ever be to Netanyahu). 

What he did was to lay out his case for why it would be a mistake of monumental proportions to cut a deal with Iran - the terrorist nation that has threatened to wipe Israel off the map and has lied ongoingly about keeping every component of every promise it has made regarding the initiation and progress of its nuclear capabilities.

So what does Matthews have to say about it?  Here's your answer:

I'll get to the heart of this speech now. This man from a foreign government walked into the United States legislative chamber and tried to take over U.S. foreign policy. He said, "You should trust me, not your president on this. I'm the man you should trust, I'm your true leader on this question of U.S. geopolitics. To protect yourself, you must listen to me and not this president." 

It was a startling situation, to allow someone to come in knowing that was going to be the message in the chamber of the U.S. Congress. This was a decision made by Boehner and certainly complied with by Netanyahu and his Ambassador Dermer. They went into the U.S. Congress to take over U.S. foreign policy today from the President. It's a remarkable day when the leaders of the opposition in Congress allowed this to happen. Think it through: What country in the world would let a foreign leader come in and attempt to wrest from the President control of U.S. foreign policy? And that's what the applause was about today...

Except:

-He did no such thing. He did what I described above, and

-Most Democrat congresspeople gave him the same effusive applause and standing ovations that Republicans did...but that, of course, goes unmentioned by Matthews. You're not supposed to notice.

If this doesn't explain why I call him Chrazy Chris, I give up.

@ 13:42 PM   Add Comment

SCOTT BROWN ON OBAMA'S "PETTY, ANGRY PETULANT" REACTION TO NETANYAHU

Ken Berwitz

No need to add anything to this excerpt from Scott Johnson's excellent commentary at powerlineblog.com (if you use the link you'll see a video of President Obama's reaction as well):

Obama turned Netanyahu's speech into an offense against majesty. He refused to meet with Netanyahu while he was in town. He procured the absence of Vice President Biden and Secretary of State Kerry from the speech. He assured that his administration had no representation at the event.

Obama commented on Netanyahu's speech yesterday afternoon.  What a contrast with Netanyahu. Obama appeared petty, angry and petulant. He can't help it.

Obama dismissed Netanyahu's speech as lacking "viable alternatives." If there is no alternative to what Netanyahu argued was "a bad deal" with Iran, that means Obama finds rejection of a bad deal or achievement of a good deal to be unrealistic alternatives to his chosen path.

Obama thus starkly confirms Netanyahu's critique. Obama intends for us not to think too hard about what he has to say. We can foil him by exercising the power of critical thought.

That pretty much says it all.

End of blog.

@ 12:21 PM   Add Comment

ISRAEL'S "APARTHEID"

Ken Berwitz

The following is a blog I wrote on January 1, 2009; over 6 years ago. 

Given that the "apartheid" BS is floating around again, like defecation in an unflushed toilet bowl, I thought it would be worth reposting...and hope you feel the same:

ISRAEL'S MIXED NEIGHBORHOODS - A STORY UNTOLD

Ken Berwitz

Here is a short story from the Jerusalem Post.  It is about Israeli neighbors who huddle in a bomb shelter to protect themselves from the artillery fired at them from Gaza.  See if you notice anything unexpected:

In Beersheba, rockets bring Arab, Jewish neighbors together

Jan. 1, 2009
Abe Selig , THE JERUSALEM POST

Beersheba looked like a ghost town Wednesday afternoon, as the sporadic wail of sirens and rattling booms of Grad rockets prompted many to stay within the relative safety of their homes, glued to their TVs and radios.

But in the city's Gimmel neighborhood - a heavily-Sephardi, working class bloc near the city center - people stood outside the entrance to a bomb shelter, passing the time with jokes and gossip while waiting anxiously for the next siren or boom.

"We didn't hear it this morning," Riki Yitzhak said. "The siren hasn't been working in this part of town at all, so we left our houses and came to the shelter. I'd rather stay here all day than go home."

Yitzhak explained that she and the others were crowded around the shelter's entrance and had just stepped outside to get a breath of fresh air.

"There are many more people downstairs," said a man who stood with the small crowd, his Hebrew peppered with an Arabic twang. "I'd say there are at least 50 people down there."

Down the flight of stairs and into the shelter's main room, it became apparent he had left out at least one unusual detail.

Sitting around the room, Jewish women pored over books of Psalms and other religious texts, while Arab women, dressed in traditional head coverings and long, modest dresses, sat next to them, knitting scarfs and caps for their young children who waited nearby.

"Look at this," Yitzhak said as she followed the crowd back down the stairs. "This is a mixed neighborhood - Jews and Arabs live here together, and we're all suffering from the rockets together. These women are scared just like we are, and they're our neighbors - we decided that we should all stay down here together."

Indeed, the Arab families, mostly Beduin, said they were happy to be with their Jewish neighbors in the shelter, and that they abhorred the rocket fire coming in from Gaza.

"What do I care about Hamas?" one of the Arab men asked, his anger visible. "This is my home right here, and they're firing rockets at it. Do you think they would stop if they knew there were Arabs living here?"

Others expressed their satisfaction with life in the neighborhood, until it was disrupted by the rocket fire.

"I've been living in this neighborhood for over 10 years," said Daoud Khaled, whose kids hung onto his pant legs as he spoke.

"I love it here, I want to keep living here forever. I have fantastic neighbors, and I'll tell you, in the Gimmel neighborhood, we're all in this together. There's no Arab and Jew here, we're all like one."

Miriam, who was standing nearby, chimed in: "We're like one big family, we get along," Then, switching to Arabic, she asked the woman sitting next to her, "How long have you been here? Eight years?"

The woman nodded, "Yes, eight years in the neighborhood."

"You see," Miriam continued, "we all get along just fine."

But aside from their stories of coexistence, nearly everyone in the shelter said they were scared, tired, and anxious to get back to their regular lives.

"Have you heard anything about when this is going to be over?" asked Muriel, a younger girl who said she had been in the shelter all day. "It's stuffy down here, and we want to go back up. But, how can we leave if more rockets are going to come down?"

Others tried to keep the mood light.

"Listen," one of the Arab men, Hamed, said. "We don't have to go to work today, the kids aren't in school, so we'll just enjoy each others' company. My wife just went to the house to bring candy; everything is going to be just fine."

Huh?  Jews and Arabs living together in the same area?  In peace?  Wait a minute, that must be propaganda, we all know it isn't true.  Jews and Arabs never live together in the Middle East.

Well it is true.  And you can find it all over Israel.  Beersheba, Haifa, city after city, neighborhood after neighborhood.

That is the untold story of Israel.  About one eighth of all Israelis are Arab - almost as many Arabs in Israel as Blacks in the United States.  And while there are tensions between Arabs and Jews, and areas within the country which are exclusively one or the other, the fact is that many Israeli Jews and Arabs live together in harmony.

Try to find that in any Arab country on the face of the earth. 

You certainly won't find it in "moderate" Jordan, which has never knowingly had one Jewish citizen.  That's not a sarcasm or an exaggeration, it is a fact.  Jordan was created and remains "judenrein" - no Jews allowed.  I bet most readers didn't know that any more than they knew how many Jews and Arabs live together in Israel.

Try to find peaceful coexistence between Jews and Arabs in Egypt.  Or Syria.  Or Lebanon.  You might as well look for a rainforest in the Arctic Circle.

Jordan, Egypt, Syria and Lebanon, it should be noted, are the four Arab countries bordering Israel. 

If that gives you a sense that Israel is an oasis of tolerance and mutual respect in a desert of intolerance and hatred....you know something most people have no idea of.

And if you're counting on our wonderful "neutral" media to educate you about it?  Keep looking for that arctic rain forest.  You have about the same shot at finding it.

@ 11:39 AM   Add Comment

BILLY SAMPLE: THE ISRAEL HATRED CONTINUES

Ken Berwitz

About a year ago, give or take, I was "unfriended" on facebook by the former major league baseball player, then sportscaster, and more recently movie-maker of sorts, Billy Sample.

The reason?  I called him out on his unrelenting, often bizarre Israel-hating posts. 

After unfriending me, Sample put up a post that he was unfriending everyone else who supported Israel...which certainly made it easy for him thereafter.  No problem spouting hatred when everyone who can respond to it is nodding agreement.

Since then, I have periodically checked Sample's facebook page (being unfriended does not prevent you from seeing it, only from commenting on it).  And, not at all surprisingly, his hatred has not abated one bit.

Which brings me to the following item that was posted, on his page Monday, the day before Benjamin Netanyahu's speech to congress.  I have decided to show it to you, and then comment on it.

Here is the item:

'The warped 'logic' of Zionism, that only corrupted media and politicians can try to pass off as logic. To any normal human being, the truth is obvious.'


And here is my point-by-point response - which Sample probably will never see, but is welcome to comment on if he does:

-Which country did Israel invade?  The only invasion of any countries in Israel's history have occurred as a reaction to Israel being attacked.  And if the reference is to Gaza, or Judea and Samaria (aka the west bank), you can add in the fact that neither of them is a country.

-The "apartheid walls" were built after a series of suicide bombers killed hundreds of innocent Israelis in shopping areas, restaurants and on busses - a little something which goes unmentioned here.  

Also unmentioned is that those same walls which keep terrorists out of Israel, keep the Palestinian Arabs - which comprise about 20% of Israel's entire population - in.  

That's quite an "apartheid" - keeping over 1.5 million of the people you're supposedly separating yourself from in the place where you are supposedly separating them from. Or, put another way, it is an obvious load of BS.

-Steal natural resources?  Which ones would those be?  Israel is notable for creating natural resources; for turning dessert land into thriving greenery.  Which Palestinian Arabs could do just by following Israel's lead.

As I have said many times in here, if Palestinian Arabs would stop trying to kill Israelis and start trying to learn from them, both sides would be 1000% better off.

-It is hard not to kill women and children, when Palestinian Arabs launch rocket and missile attacks aimed at Israeli population centers...from heavily populated civilian areas... 

...and when their brave "leaders" get in front of the cameras and instruct civilians - their own people - to stay put, even after Israel drops leaflets warning that an attack is about to take place...which some of them are happy to do voluntarily

When that happens, it shows that Israel, literally, cares more about the lives of Palestinian Arabs than their own "leaders" do.   Much better to have a body count of dead civilians Israel haters can use for propaganda purposes.

This leaves Israel with the choice of either protecting innocent Palestnian Arab lives by not firing back...thus allowing them to take free shots at Israeli civilians...or taking out the launch sites, inherently killing civilians to do so, and then having Israel-haters blame them for it instead of the real culprits.

-Israel's history is that it only attacks after either being attacked or if an attack is imminent (e.g. when four Arab armies massed their troops on Israel's borders in 1967).  By contrast, the hamas charter - which is now used by Fatah as well, since their "unity agreement" -  specifically calls for the annihilation of Israel and deaths of all Jews. 

If Israel, with its far superior military might, had wanted to annihilate Palestinian Arabs, it would have done so decades ago.  Does this not show, with crystal clarity, the difference between these two cultures?

-The final words - a sarcastic reaction to the idea that Israel wants to live in peace with its neighbors  - is my favorite part of this exercise in BS.  And it's not just because of the "thier" typo. 

Point of order:  Israel agreed to peace with Egypt in 1979.  It has not engaged in any military activity against Egypt since then.   Israel agreed to peace with Jordan in 1994.  It has not engaged in any military activity against Jordan since then. 

That is proof positive  - 36 years of it with Egypt, 21 with Jordan - that Israel can, and does, live in peace with Arab neighbors.  

And it is also proof that Arabs  - even Arabs who hate Israel, which Egypt and Jordan, I assure you, very much do, can live in peace with Israel. 

Now:  when have Palestinian Arabs ever shown they can live in peace with anyone?

This is the first blog I have written anything about Billy Sample's hatred of Israel in quite some time.  And unless there is a response to it which warrants something further, it will probably be the last one for quite some time as well. 

Enough.

@ 10:51 AM   Add Comment

A SPEED TRAP TO REMEMBER

Ken Berwitz

From our pal Hall Of Fame Jerry....and I laughed out loud when I saw it.


'New red light camera supplier for Belleville.'


Ok, back to politics where, all too often, things are done at breakneck speed without being checked by anyone.

@ 09:38 AM   Add Comment

NETANYAHU'S SPEECH - THE NEW YORK TIMES IDIOTORIAL

Ken Berwitz

You had to know this was coming.

The New York Times has a lead idiotorial (that's an editorial with an idiotic premise) excoriating Benjamin Netanyahu and his speech, before a wildly enthusiastic joint session of congress yesterday.

Here is the first half or so of the idiotorial - in rust - with my comments in blue:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel could not have hoped for a more rapturous welcome in Congress. With Republicans and most Democrats as his props, he entered the House of Representatives to thunderous applause on Tuesday, waving his hand like a conquering hero and being mobbed by fawning lawmakers as he made his way to the lectern. That's right. That's what happened. It means that, unlike Barack Obama, the people around him, and 50-60 left wing, mostly anti-Israel boycotters - all Democrats (whose seats were joyously taken by others), they have extremely high regard for Mr. Netanyahu and his message. To a President willing to listen and learn, this would be what Barack Obama would call a "teaching moment". Too bad he, himself, is unteachable.

Even Washington doesn't often see this level of exploitative political theater; it was made worse because it was so obviously intended to challenge President Obama's foreign policy.  Challenging President Obama's foreign policy makes it worse?  Worse?  The fact that Israel's Prime Minister, who leads a country specifically targeted for annihilation by the people Mr. Obama's "deal" would allow to keep its nuclear capabilities is against its being allowed to keep nuclear capabilities is a problem to you? What did you expect Netanyahu's position to be?  That it's a great idea, and he'll send a few Israeli physicists over to help with the project?

Mr. Netanyahu's speech offered nothing of substance that was new, making it clear that this performance was all about proving his toughness on security issues ahead of the parliamentary election he faces on March 17. He offered no new insight on Iran and no new reasons to reject the agreement being negotiated with Iran by the United States and five other major powers to constrain Iran's nuclear program.  The Times' definition of "nothing new": Netanyahu said the same thing he has said all along:  that allowing Iran nuclear capabilities is a gargantuan mistake - not only for Israel's well-being but the Arab states around Israel (which share his concern, as shown here). In other words, the problem, to Barack Obama and the New York Times, is that Netanyahu did not change his position, and agree with a "deal" that would put Israel and its Arab neighbors in mortal danger. That is stunningly ridiculous.

His demand that Mr. Obama push for a better deal is hollow. He clearly doesn't want negotiations and failed to suggest any reasonable alternative approach that could halt Iran's nuclear efforts. Uh, no. That is another stunningly ridiculous claim - and a dishonest one too.  He wants successful negotiations that protect his country, and laid out specifics on what the elements of such a deal would be. 

Moreover, he appeared to impose new conditions, insisting that international sanctions not be lifted as long as Iran continues its aggressive behavior, including hostility toward Israel and support for Hezbollah, which has called for Israel's destruction. Gee, what an insight. The Prime Minister of Israel insists that Iran forego aggressive behavior - which, in this case, is its call for the destruction of Israel.  Who would have thought Israel could possibly take such a position.  What's wrong with those people anyway.

By the way, doesn't imposing new conditions and insisting that international sanctions not be lifted until Iran stops overtly threatening Israel, qualify as an alternative approach - you know, the one you said did not exist in the previous paragraph? 

Oh, and nice try on your clumsy attempt at disinformation - i.e. putting the threat to Israel 100% on hezbollah, not Iran (which you accuse of being nothing more than "hostile")...as if Iran's leaders were not the ones saying they are going to wipe Israel off the map. Another example of going beyond stunningly ridiculous to flat-out dishonest.

Mr. Netanyahu has two main objections. One is that an agreement would not force Iran to dismantle its nuclear facilities and would leave it with the ability to enrich uranium and, in time, to produce enough nuclear fuel for a bomb. Two, that a deal to severely restrict Iran's ability to produce nuclear fuel for a decade or more is not long enough. He also dismisses the potential effectiveness of international inspections to deter Iran from cheating. All correct. All 100% legitimate objections. But not to the Israel-haters in DC...or their likeminded pals among the New York Times editorial staff.

Do you need anything else to understand my use of the term "idiotorial"?

If so, here's a little more.  Further on we have this textbook case of New York Times naivete:

Despite his commitment to negotiations, President Obama has repeatedly said he would never let Iran obtain a nuclear weapon and if an agreement is not honored, he would take action to back up his warning. Mr. Netanyahu obviously doesn't trust him, which may be the most dangerous truth of this entire impasse.

It's a problem that Netanyahu doesn't trust Obama? No, it's a problem that the New York Times does trust Obama - who has lied to our faces on one issue after another, continually, for 6 years. 

There's also a reference to a push-poll of just 700 respondents, who are "educated" on the issues before asking their opinion on the deal Obama is cooking up with Iran.  The poll would be a joke to the New York Times if it drew a conclusion the paper's "brain trust" disagreed with...but it is the holy grail in this idiotorial because it coincides with their views.

Remember when the New York Times was a great newspaper?  You must be very old.  I'm having trouble remembering when it was even a good one.

@ 08:59 AM   Add Comment

Tuesday, 03 March 2015

BILL O'REILLY AT HIS UNWATCHABLE WORST

Ken Berwitz

The headline is the post. O'Reilly has Kristin Powers and Monica Crowley on to discuss the Netanyahu speech and Iran strategy.  And neither is being allowed to finish a thought...Crowley is not being allowed to so much as finish a sentence.

It is more and more amazing to me that this guy predominates in prime time cable news programming.  Personally I find him borderline unwatchable....and today was one of the days he crossed the border.

@ 20:20 PM   Add Comment

SHEIKING WITH THE ENEMY

Ken Berwitz

What do you do when you're stuck with an ally you detest?  You note that the ally is terrible....and then agree with the position it takes.

That is the situation Saudi Arabia's Sheiks are faced with. 

See, they fear Iran's nuclear progress every bit as much as Israel does. Therefore, preventing a nuclear Iran has, however improbably, brought them together. 

Which is why the Saudi-backed Al Arabiya's Editor in Chief of its English-language arm, Faisal J. Abbas, put out an article today, which says this:

"It is extremely rare for any reasonable person to ever agree with anything Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says or does.  However, one must admit, Bibi did get it right, at least when it came to dealing with Iran.

"What is absurd, however, is that despite this being perhaps the only thing that brings together Arabs and Israelis (as it threatens them all), the only stakeholder that seems not to realize the danger of the situation is President Obama, who is now infamous for being the latest pen-pal of the Supreme Leader of the World's biggest terrorist regime: Ayatollah Ali Khamenei (Although, the latter never seems to write back!)."

Yes, it is true.  I am not on the Kickapoo joy juice or LSD.  A Saudi Arab actually wrote that in a Saudi Newspaper.

And in case you think it is the only one, here is what Dr. Ahmad Al-Faraj, a columnist for the Saudi daily Al-Jazirah, has written about the Netanyahu speech and Barack Obama's disdain for it:

"I will conclude by saying the following: Obama is the godfather of the prefabricated revolutions in the Arab world, and he is the ally of political Islam, [which is] the caring mother of [all] the terrorist organizations, and he is working to sign an agreement with Iran that will come at the expense of the US's longtime allies in the Gulf.

"I am very glad of Netanyahu's firm stance and [his decision] to speak against the nuclear agreement at the American Congress despite the Obama administration's anger and fury.

"I believe that Netanyahu's conduct will serve our interests, the people of the Gulf, much more than the foolish behavior of one of the worst American presidents."

We understand, don't we, that these words would not - could not - ever be written without the approval of the powers that be in Riyadh.

So we now know the Saudi position is that Barack Obama is blowing this so badly that the hated Israel and its hated Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, look good by comparison.

And don't doubt that this feeling is shared by other Arab states in the Middle East, which are just as threatened by Iran as the Saudis are. 

I wonder when - if ever - this reality will dawn on some of Mr. Obama's fellow Democrats...and some of my fellow "Lost Tribe" Jews.

@ 19:59 PM   Add Comment

NANCY PELOSI'S STATEMENT

Ken Berwitz

With a special shout-out to my Lost Tribe friends....

....here is the statement house minority leader Nancy Pelosi just issued regarding Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech - in rust, with my comments in blue.

"The unbreakable bonds between the United States and Israel are rooted in our shared values, our common ideals and mutual interests.  Ours is a deep and abiding friendship that will always reach beyond party. Americans stand shoulder to shoulder with the Israeli people.  The state of Israel stands as the greatest political achievement of the 20th century, and the United States will always have an unshakable commitment to Israel's security. Then, of course, you have the greatest of respect for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech to the congress, in which he reiterates that bond, and explains why he feels a bad deal with Iran is so dangerous to Israel, the overall Middle East (Israel is by no means the only country fearful of its consequences) and the rest of the world - very much including the USA. Right?
"That is why, as one who values the U.S. - Israel relationship, and loves Israel, I was near tears throughout the Prime Minister's speech - saddened by the insult to the intelligence of the United States as part of the P5 +1 nations, and saddened by the condescension toward our knowledge of the threat posed by Iran and our broader commitment to preventing nuclear proliferation. Huh??????? You were near tears that Mr. Netanyahu articulated the threat you agree exists, and explained his position on what a deal which allowed Iran to go nuclear would mean to his country and all the others? What are you talking about?
"Today, Prime Minister Netanyahu reiterated something we all agree upon: a nuclear armed Iran is unacceptable to both our countries.  We have all said that a bad deal is worse than no deal, and stopping the spread of nuclear weapons is the bedrock of our foreign policy and national security.  As President Obama has said consistently, all options are on the table for preventing a nuclear-armed Iran." In other words, you are saying that, in terms of our goals, Mr. Netanyahu is on the same page with Mr. Obama. So what the eff was your problem with the fact that he said it in front of congress?

Based on that statement, I have one question for Ms. Pelosi - the same one Judge Chamberlain (Fred Gwynne) asked Vincent Gambini (Joe Pesci)  in "My Cousin Vinny"

Are you on drugs? 

@ 15:02 PM   Add Comment

THE QUOTE OF THE DAY

Ken Berwitz

Today's quote comes to us from Mr. Unconditional Amnesty For All Mexican Illegals himself, Rep. Luis Guittierez (D-IL).

Guitierrez was one of the 40 - 60 (depending on who you listen to) Democrats who boycotted Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech.  His comment about it?

"What did he say today that he couldn't have said in two weeks?"

You mean after the deal with Iran was completed, and it wouldn't have mattered at all? 

Brilliant, Luis.  You win Quote Of The Day honors for demonstrating either hall-of-fame quality obtuseness, or showing that you think your constituents are ignoramuses who can't figure out how ridiculous that comment was.  Maybe both.

An "honor" well earned.

@ 12:10 PM   Add Comment

MSNBC'S REACTION

Ken Berwitz

I just put on MSNBC for a minute...and heard Chris Matthews desperately trying to put a bad face on Netanyahu's words....and now is interviewing one of the Democrats who boycotted the speech.

Pathetic?  Nah, just MSNBC being MSNBC.

@ 11:55 AM   Add Comment

THE NETANYAHU SPEECH

Ken Berwitz

I'll try to do this in real time, as best I can.

11:08:  Netanyahu enters the chamber to thunderous applause and cheers.  Hugely positive reception.

11:11 Boehner formally introduces Netanyahu.  More enthusiastic applause.

Netanyahu acknowledges Harry Reid and notes that it's good to see him on his feet again.  Very wise move, giving a nod to the top Senate Democrat.

First words - never his attention for this to be political, and then a thank you to the USA for its "year after year, decade after decade" support of Israel.  Big applause, and a cheering, standing ovation.

11:15 Netanyahu mentions support of Israel from Harry Truman (the President when modern Israel came into existence) to Barack Obama.  And now he is extolling President Obama for the things he has done on Israel's behalf.  Very very smart.  Makes this bipartisan...and makes it that much harder for Obama to slam Netanyahu after the speech is made (not that he won't do it).

11:17 Thanks America for working with Israel on its Iron Dome defense system.

Now reminding chamber of Iran's overt threats to annihilate Israel and all Jews.

11:22 Reminding chamber that Iran is exporting terrorism to state after state in the middle east.

11:24 States that Iran's subjugation and terror must be stopped.  Extended applause.

11:25 Reminds the chamber that ISIS and Iran are fighting to be the king of militant Islam, that whomever wins we lose.  "THe enemy of your enemy, is your enemy".

11:27 To defeat ISIS but let Iran get nuclear weapons would be to win the battle but lose the war.  We can't let that happen. Big applause.

11:28 Now Netanyahu is citing parts of the deal that are public record.  The deal has wo major concessions -  one:  leaves Iran with vast nuclear capability and short breakout time to achieve a bomb.  No removal of nuclear facilities in the deal.  Two - the deal would be overseen by inspectors, but that would not stop Iran - they could just kick out the inspectors, like North Korea did.  And he is reminding the chamber that Iran has denied inspectors access in the past, and played a game of "hide and cheat" with them.

11:32 Reminds chamber that the nuclear inhibitions in the deal, even if they were kept to, are only for 10 years, which is "the blink of an eye for a nation".

11:34 Reminds chamber that Iran is not putting its missile capabilities on the table at all, and that would enable it to hit any part of the United States.

The deal assumes that Iran will change for the better, or an alternative deal is worse.  Netanyahu disagrees with both.  He points out that this regime has been in place for 36 years and has not gotten any better in this time.  "This is not a farewell to arms, it is a farewell to arms control"  "If anyone thinks this deal kicks the can down the road, think again"

We can insist that retrictions remain as long as Iran continues its aggression in the world.  Extended applause.

11:38 - Iran must do three things:  stop its aggression against its neighbors in the Middle East, second, stop supporting terrorism around the world, "and third, stop threatening to annihilate my country, Israel, the one and only Jewish state"  Extended applause.

"If Iran wants to be treated like a normal country, let it act like a normal country"  Extended applause.

11:40 What about the argument that there is no alternative to this deal?  Nuclear know-how without nuclear material cannot result in making nuclear weapons.  If they threaten to walk out, call their bluff.  They'll be back.  They need the deal more than you do.

11:42 No deal is better than a bad deal.  This is a very bad deal.  We're better off without it.  Extended applause and cheers.

The alternative to a bad deal is not war.  The alternative to this bad deal is a much better deal. One which does not leave Iran with a vast nuclear capability, no easy path to the bomb.

11:44 we are at a fateful crossroads.  There are two paths.  One leads to a bad deal, a nuclear armed Iran that will lead to war.  The second path, however, difficult, would prevent a nuclearized Iran, a nuclearized Middle east and the horrendous consequences.  The difficult path is the one less traveled, but it will make all the difference......for the peace we all desire.  Extended applause.

11:46 Introduces Elie Weisel to extended applause.  Tells the chamber Weisel's life and work give meaning to the words "Never Again" - again to big applause.  Netanyahu guarantees to Weisel (and the chamber) that the days of Jews passively accepting genocidal peace "are over" - huge applause and cheers.

11:48:  We, the Jewish people can defend ourselves (big ovation).  "Even if Israel has to stand alone, Israel will stand".  But I know that America stands with Israel, you stand with Israel.  Major applause.

You stand with Israel because it is the story of the human spirit that refuses, again and again to succumb to history's horrors.

Ends with Moses's message:  to be strong and resolute without fear. 

11:51 Final words:  "May God bless the state of Israel, and may God bless the United States of America - thunderous applause, standing ovation.

Tremendous speech.  Hugely important, hugely successful. Not political at all.  Not vindictive toward Obama or Kerry at all.  I doubt it could have been done better.

UPDATE: 

I now know there was a standing-room only audience for Mr. Netanyahu's speech - no problem at all finding asses (reference to the body part) to replace the asses (reference to the house members - every one a Democrat) who gave them up. 

And, it is being reported, there were 15 standing ovations - not the BS kind you see at State Of The Union speeches, when the President's party is duty bound to bounce up and down like a bunch of NASCAR pistons, but real ones.

Click here for a complete transcript. 

@ 11:08 AM   5 comments

MICHAEL RAMIREZ EXPLAINS OBAMA'S "DEAL" WITH IRAN

Ken Berwitz

Here, from the great Michael Ramirez, is a cartoon which explains the parameters of President Obama's "deal" with Iran just about perfectly:


Michael Ramirez Cartoon enlarge picture

If a picture is worth 1,000 words, this cartoon is worth 1,000,000.  Thank you, Mr. Ramirez, for laying it out so well.

@ 10:07 AM   Add Comment

HILLARY CLINTON'S EMAILS

Ken Berwitz

This story is so big that even the usually Hillary-loving New York Times, and the Today Show - which usually does just about everything short of picking out furniture with Hillary Clinton - had to make it a lead story today.

Here are the first two paragraphs of Michael S. Schmidt's Page 1 article:

Hillary Rodham Clinton exclusively used a personal email account to conduct government business as secretary of state, State Department officials said, and may have violated federal requirements that officials' correspondence be retained as part of the agency's record.

Mrs. Clinton did not have a government email address during her four-year tenure at the State Department. Her aides took no actions to have her personal emails preserved on department servers at the time, as required by the Federal Records Act.

"It is very difficult to conceive of a scenario - short of nuclear winter - where an agency would be justified in allowing its cabinet-level head officer to solely use a private email communications channel for the conduct of government business," said Jason R. Baron, a lawyer at Drinker Biddle & Reath who is a former director of litigation at the National Archives and Records Administration.

Amazing, isn't it?  Even with this overtly damning evidence, the first paragraph says Clinton "may have" violated federal requirements ---- before the second paragraph tells us that preserving emails on department servers is "required by the Federal Records Act.

Note to writer Schmidt and the Times editors - if federal law requires her to do it, and she didn't do it, that's not a "may have violated federal requirements", that's a DID violate them.

Now: why would Hillary Clinton do this?  When I think of what possible reasons there are, only three words come to mind:  ignorant, stupid and nefarious.

I certainly do not consider Hillary Clinton an ignoramus.

I certainly do not think she is stupid.

That leaves nefarious:  as in what was on those emails that she intended to hide from scrutiny?

The big question:  will the Times, Today and other usually Hillary-fawning venues pursue this story?  Or will they give her the lois lerner treatment and, after a day or two of going through the motions, pretend it doesn't exist/doesn't matter?

I'll be very interested to see, one way or the other.  You should be too. 

Because if mainstream media bails, even somewhat, on Hillary Clinton, what does she have left?  Her accomplishments?  Like which ones?

See my point?

@ 09:09 AM   2 comments

ANOTHER HEADS-UP FOR THE LOST TRIBE

Ken Berwitz

Ever the optimist, I am putting up another demonstration of why the Lost Tribe (i.e. Jews, and non-Jews who support Israel, but reflexively support Obama and Democrats anyway) should start making demands that their party of choice go back to what it was, or they will move on.

The latest evidence?  A CBS News poll that was conducted in late February, in which respondents were asked if they consider Israel an ally - not just a friendly country, but an ally. 

The findings:  

-64% of Republicans consider Israel an ally.  47% of Democrats do. 

-When you add in "friendly country", the Republican level goes to 88%...and Democrats to 80%.  In other words, one in five Democrats consider it either an unfriendly country or an enemy of the USA. 

And that is clearly reflected in the congress as well.  Even the most cursory examination of Republican and Democrat votes regarding Israel will show this divide.

To my Lost Tribe friends:  Could it possibly be clearer that this is not the Democrat party you cast your lot with all those years ago?

Ronald Reagan, a former Democrat who became a Republican, famously said "I did not leave the Democratic Party, the Democratic Party left me".  That is exactly what has happened to you.

Some of you, I am sure, just don't realize as much. Which is sad.  But, even sadder, I am sure a great many of you do know...but avoid that knowledge because it is much easier, much more comfortable to stay "in uniform", pump out a few negative comments about Republicans, and nod agreement with each other.

The truth is, there are plenty of negative things you can say about both parties.  But that leads to the conclusion that neither should be your unconditional, unthinking, second-nature selection in the voting booth - which is precisely the point I am trying to make.

Time to start considering all your options, Lost Tribers.  Long past time, actually.  I hope you start doing just that. 

And today, as you watch Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's address to a joint session of congress and notice how many Democrats are boycotting/refusing to hear what he has to say about the enormous danger of allowing Iran to become a nuclear power, would be a very good time to start.

@ 08:36 AM   Add Comment

Monday, 02 March 2015

IRAN AND NUCLEAR PROLIFERATION

Ken Berwitz

A quick point to be made here:

Now we are getting indications from Arab states, which are - understandably - scared excrement-less of Iran going nuclear, indicating that if a "deal" is cut which allows Iran to continue its nuclear program, they will assume Iran is moving ahead with nuclear weapon capability...and quickly start nuclear programs of their own.

Maybe Barack Obama can be duped into thinking that's not how it will go down but, apparently, others are seeing what is right in front of their eyes.

The answer here is a simple, straightforward one.  No to Iran. 

You don't allow the single most prolific backer of terrorism in the world, and one specifically commited to obliterating Israel, to create the means by which it can be done. 

The Arab gulf states know that, although Israel is Iran's prime target, it is far from the only one.  Even if the hapless, hopeless Obama/Kerry tandem can't figure it out.

I wish Benjamin Netanyahu every success in his attempt to make this clear to the U.S. congress tomorrow -- and marvel at the improbable group of supporters he inherently will be speaking for.

@ 21:14 PM   Add Comment

THE QUOTE OF THE DAY

Ken Berwitz

Today's Quote Of The Day comes to us from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

In a previous blog, I noted that he had made a terrific speech before AIPAC (The American Israeli Political Action Committee). 

Here is a key part of what Mr. Netanyahu said:

"My speech is not intended to show any disrespect to President Obama or the esteemed office that he holds. I have great respect for both. My speech is also not intended to inject Israel into the American partisan debate. An important reason why our alliance has grown stronger, decade after decade, is that it has been championed by both parties, and so it must remain.

"The purpose of my address to congress tomorrow is to speak up about a potential deal with Iran that could threaten the survival of Israel. Iran is the foremost state sponsor of terrorism in the world. Imagine what Iran would do with nuclear weapons. And this same Iran vows to annihilate Israel. If it develops nuclear weapons it would have the means to achieve that goal. We must not let that happen."

What we were treated to in this, and the rest of his speech, is plainly spoken common sense, from a man who has a well-earned reputation for providing just that - which is why he earns today's Quote Of The Day honors.

In those few words, Benjamin Netanyahu not only put to rest several of the issues, real and bogus, that have been invoked about his appearance before congress tomorrow, but actually gives Democrats who are currently intending to boycott the speech a face-saving out:  "Well, he says he respects the President, acknowledges his support for Israel, and assures us he is here only to outline his view of the danger in making a deal with Iran.  If that is why he is here, I am now comfortable with his motives and will be there for his speech".

Let's see how many of them take advantage of Mr. Netanyahu's generous olive branch... and how many don't.

@ 16:56 PM   Add Comment

THE PARAGRAPHS OF THE DAY

Ken Berwitz

The Paragraphs Of The Day - usually it's just one, but today there are two - come from today's Washington Examiner editorial which decries the obvious dislike (or a lot worse) that President Obama holds not just for Israel's Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, but for Israel itself.

The editorial is excellent, and I urge you to use the above link to read every word.  But the last two paragraphs sum things up so well that they garner Paragraph(s) Of The Day honors:

Even if we were to set aside any notion of the importance of the U.S.-Israel relationship or dismiss the significance of the vow "Never Again," and merely look at the issue in the most narrow and dispassionate terms of what's in America's national security interests, the administration's moves are dangerous. In trying to prove that he won't be cowed by any sort of lobbying effort by the pro-Israel community, Obama has been stubbornly refusing to see that his policy has elevated a radical Islamist regime as a regional power - a regime that has for decades called for "Death to America" and has been a leading state sponsor of terrorism. Allowing Iran to go nuclear not only alienates Israel, but also Arab nations that would also be threatened.

As thousands gather for this year's AIPAC conference on Monday, Obama won't be addressing them, as he last did in 2008 and 2012, when he was seeking election. Instead, he will send National Security Advisor Susan Rice (who recently called Netanyahu's visit to Congress "destructive") and U.N. Ambassador Samantha Power. No doubt, the two will speak in platitudes about the importance of the U.S. relationship with Israel. But it's getting more difficult to hide the fact that Obama's foreign policy is blinded by his hostility toward Israel to the point where he's putting America's own national security at risk.

Couldn't have said it better myself.

Remember:  Barack Obama is the same foreign policy deep-thinker who told us al-qaeda was "virtually eliminated", ISIS was a "jayvee squad" facilitated the demise of moamar qaddafi....to be replaced by a virtually nonexistent government where Islamic terrorists are thriving, facilitated the demise of Egypt's Hosni Mubarak...to be replaced by a Muslim Brotherhood stooge who ignored the Egyptian constitution and eventually had to be removed from power by the military, has warned Syrian butcher bashar al-assad about crossing a red line...and then did nothing about it when he did...and has been made mincemeat of for years by Russian KGBer vladimir putin.

If Barack Obama is this incompetent everywhere else, why would anyone expect him to perform any more capably with Israel?  Supporters of Israel had every reason to expect nothing - and, arguably, got even less.

Prime Minister Netanyahu gave a bravura performance this morning at AIPAC - an organization that, as would be expected, is entirely friendly to him.  His speech was compelling, on-target, and devoid of the rancor he has every reason to feel for Obama & Co.  In other words, he acted like a big boy. 

Tomorrow Mr. Netanyahu will address a joint session of congress, where most members will also be friendly....but those who are not - virtually all of them Democrats (paying attention, Lost Tribers?)...will act like little boys and girls, and head for parts unknown while he speaks.

Ironically, by not showing their anti-Israel faces, they are doing Prime Minister Netanyahu a favor. 

And, even more ironically, by showing how sizable, and dedicated, the Democrat anti-Israel contingent is, they're doing the Republican Party a favor as well.

Brilliant move, guys. Honest.

@ 15:14 PM   Add Comment

BLOW BLOWING HARD BASED ON SOFT INFORMATION

Ken Berwitz

New York Times Op-Ed columnist Charles Blow is fun to read.  His stock in trade, these days, is picking up on poll data (from the polls which have results he likes), posting the data in huge print, and writing colmns which make conclusions based on those poll data.

His latest column is about CPAC - the Conservative Political Action Committee - and its just-ended convention.

Use the link I've provided and you will see that Mr. Blow has put up a series of poll results showing the country is emphatically against Republicans on key issues, which presumably is why he characterizes the CPAC convention as - to use the title of his column - "Hackneyed and Hollow".

Mr. Blow fleshes out that characterization by telling us that "There remains in the Republican Party, as evidenced by the speakers at this event, a breathtaking narrowness of vision and deficit of creative thought."

I am no apologist for CPAC, I assure you.  But this is too easy to answer for me to pass up the opportunity.

According to the University of Virginia's political pundit, Larry Sabato, over the 6 years President Obama has been President.  Republicans' "breathtaking narrowness of vision and deficit of creative thought" has resulted in gaining 13 Senate seats, 11 governorships, 69 House seats, 30 state legislative chambers and 913 state legislative seats.

According to politifact.com - which ain't exactly an arm of CPAC - these losses are at least double those seen for any other two term presidency since Truman (and who knows how far back before that?).

This being the case, I have a question for Mr. Blow:  If Republicans' narrowness of vision and deficit of creative thought have yielded those gains, what would you say about the presumably broader vision and surfeit of creative thought provided by Democrats?  Any thoughts on why they were the losers of everything Republicans gained?

Tell me, sir:  knowing those actual results, do you really still think the public is that negative about Republicans?  That positive about Democrats?  That they join you in seeing the reasons for voting in so many Republicans "hackneyed and hollow"?

Just asking.....

@ 10:46 AM   1 comment

MCCAIN ON KERRY - AND OBAMA

Ken Berwitz

John McCain was on MSNBC this weekend...and I suspect he spun a few heads with his remarks about John Kerry.

As any regular reader of this blog knows, I have cited Kerry many times for being in public office as long as he has without any discernible accomplishments.  Sadly (though predictably), this has continued with his tenure as Secretary Of State.

I did not watch the interview.  But, according to this Associated Press article, Mr. McCain said, among other things, that Kerry:

-has "accomplished nothing except mileage",

- demanded that his interviewers  "tell me one accomplishment that he has made." (I don't know of any - do you?), and

-and added in Kerry's boss, by characterizing Barack Obama's foreign policy this way:  "I would say worse than adrift. I would say delusional.".

My question to you:  which of these statements is anything but accurate?

Personally I would have said it a bit more colorfully (then again, McCain was on a TV show, so maybe in a different venue he would have too).  But I would have reached the same conclusions.

Less than two more years of this nightmare to go.  I count the seconds.

@ 09:59 AM   8 comments

WHY I HAVE SO LITTLE REGARD FOR JEWISH ORGANIZATIONS IN THE USA

Ken Berwitz

Jewish organizations in the USA. I used to have great regard for them, and felt they performed important, even vital, service for Jewry in the USA and around the world.

I knew that virtually all of them were partisan Democrat organizations.  But that made sense, since Democrats, far more than Republicans, were fully supportive of equality for Jews in the USA and for Israel.

But, over the years, a sad shift has taken place.  Now the Democrat Party, far more than the Republican Party, is the place for anti-Jewish and anti-Israel sentiment.  And the Jewish organizations I respected so much have remained virtually unchanged in their partisanship.  They are still sucking up to Democrats and disdaining Republicans...

...which tells me that, like the NAACP has become for Black citizens, these groups are more self-congratulatory societies which enjoy their status among Democrats too much to risk damaging them by calling out the increasingly anti-Jewish, anti-Israel nature of the Democrat Party.

Let me show you a classic case in point. 

Over the weekend, there was a full page ad in the New York Times, attacking Susan Rice for her indifference to the fate of Israel at the hands of Iran - a country where the government stooges chant "Death To America, Death To Israel", and which is on record as intending to "wipe Israel off the map".

The ad goes into detail to show that this is not the first time Rice has put politics over genocide, and cites her despicable record on Rwanda as well. 

Here it is:





That ad is blunt, hard-hitting....and, sad to say, rings true.

But, immediately, virtually every Jewish organization in the USA fell over each other to denounce it.  If you read this article in the Jerusalem Post, you will see that the denunciations include comments such as: "revolting", "spurious and perverse", "outrageous", "entirely inappropriate", "ad hominem", "grotesque", "abhorrent", "a sinister slur" and that the ad "is completely inconsistent with the record of friendship and loyalty this public official has shown Israel and the Jewish people".

Tell me:  which of these denunciations in any way accuses the ad of being untrue - including the dodge that Susan Rice is "friendly and loyal to the Jewish people" but does not talk about her ongoing record of being anti-Israel (here is one example, here is another, and there's plenty more where that came from).

The answer?  NOT ONE of them. 

If this ad were untrue in any way, wouldn't you be seeing specific examples of what those untruths were?

The fact that all they can do is fecklessly barf out boiler-plate condemnations like "revolting", "perverse", "outrageous", blah, blah, blah, yada, yada, yada, - without providing even one example of anything that is untrue or even exaggerated about what the ad says - shows us what has become of these groups; what they have devolved into.

That is why I have so little regard for them anymore.  Do you blame me?

@ 09:01 AM   Add Comment

Sunday, 01 March 2015

A GOOD EATING WEEKEND

Ken Berwitz

Apropos of nothing political, but many things culinary....

I have to say that food was one of the highlights of this weekend. 

On Friday night we were with dear friends at the State Theater in New Brunswick, NJ, to see A Midsummer Night's Deam - as a ballet (though, improbable though it might seem, there was singing as well).  Wonderful production, excellent throughout. And what a pair of legs on the prima ballerina (predictable, I suppose.  would you expect to see Rosie O'Donnell's twin sister out there?)

For dinner, we went to Tumulty's Pub - an old-timer (it originally opened in 1963, though in a different location).  We all had burgers - and you can't beat the deal.  For $9.95 you get a huge, delicious burger (mine was turkey, everyone else had beef) with lettuce, tomato, and additional topping of your choice included.  But that's not all.  The price also includes a quarter-wedge of lettuce with your choice of dressings as an appetizer of sorts, and an order of French fries that I could not finish.  Not only that, but since happy hour goes to 7PM and we got in under the wire, the wine was less expensive too I take a sip of mine and hand it over to my wife, who happily imbibes both glasses...and is none the worse for wear (too bad, there are times I'd love to get her roaring drunk, and then we could.....uh, never mind). 

Saturday night we were with the family - our sons, and beautiful daughter in law.  We ate at Fascino, a sort of Italian restaurant on Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair (I say "sort of", because the menu is only partially Italian).

The food is just terrific.  If Fascino is not the single best restaurant I have been to in New Jersey, it is one of the top three.  I had the peekytoe crab appetizer and the duck.  Other orders included pork chops (delicious, and moist/not dry as I was told) and scallops - one more delicious than the next.  We also ordered a pasta dish for the table - very simple with a sauce and mushrooms - that was, as my wife would say, to die for.

Tonight was pretty basic - a chicken from Costco (great deal:  for five bucks you get a bird that outweighs you).  We ate less than half of it, and I made chicken salad out of the rest, using this recipe - which includes pepper, onion, corn and not a lot of mayonnaise (we skipped the celery because my bride doesn't like it).  It tastes great. and there's enough for a couple of days.

Ok, for whatever it is worth to you, there was the food portion of our weekend.  Now back to politics, where gastronomy is usually superseded by gastritis, the pork is in legislation rather than chops, and there is no shortage of chickens...or bird-brains.

@ 20:31 PM   Add Comment

LYING ABOUT SUPPORT FOR NETANYAHU'S SPEECH

Ken Berwitz

This is the second poll like this that I have seen:  intentionally worded in a way guaranteed to get a negative response, and then given a headline with a conclusion that cannot be made from that wording.

I am referring to the headline, and first paragraphs of Mark Murray's article for NBC News.

Let's start with the headline alone:

Poll: Nearly Half of Americans Take Issue With Netanyahu Speech

What does that tell you?  It tells you that almost half the country is against Netanyahu making this speech, doesn't it?  No need to read on, we now know that there is a ton of opposition to Mr. Netanyahu going before congress.

Except...

Here are the first two paragraphs of the article that headline is supposed to reflect:

Nearly half of American voters - 48 percent - say that congressional Republicans should not have invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address Congress on Tuesday without first notifying President Barack Obama, according to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.

By contrast, 30 percent of those polled believe the invitation was fine, and another 22 percent don't know enough to say either way.

Wait a minute. That doesn't American Voters are against Prime Minister Netanyahu being invited to make the speech, or the speech itself. It only says that 48% are against the invitation being made without notifying Barack Obama about it. An entirely different issue.

So why was the headline worded that way - other than to confuse and mislead readers?  Give me a hint.

And when you're through not being able to give me any other reason - because there isn't one - you can try convincing me that Mark Murray, who happens to be the Senior Political Editor of NBC News, did not know that headline was fraudulent. 

Don't count on making that case either.

I have an idea for Mr. Murray:   how about less BS polling analysis about Benjamin Netanyahu, and a little more news content about the millions and millions Hillary Clinton's foundation got from foreign nations while she was our Secretary of State.  Or maybe a few paragraphs on the newly-discovered IRS emails from lois "liar" lerner that were supposedly no longer in existence?  

And, finally, two questions:

-Question 1:  Why did you do it?  Why did you give us a fraudulent headline regarding Netanyahu's speech, while virtually blacking out real stories about Clinton and lerner?  

Is lying about Netanyahu's speech more fun than telling the truth about Clinton and lerner?  Or is it just the usual partisanship?  

-Question 2: Why didn't you directly ask the poll respondents whether or not they supported Prime Minister Netanyahu giving a speech before congress, about what he feels the dangers of making a deal with Iran are?   Were you afraid you would get overwhelming approval on that question, and it would embarrass your lord and savior Barack Obama?

I don't expect an answer to either.

@ 15:34 PM   Add Comment

SUPPORT FOR ISRAEL: THE NATION SPEAKS

Ken Berwitz

So tell me: As Benjamin Netanyahu flies in from Israel to address a joint session of congress - and as President Obama, his henchman John Kerry, and a number of Democrat congresspeople tell him he is unwelcome here...

...how do the people feel?

Well, here is a chart from Gallup measuring support for Israel and Palestinian Arabs over the past 27 years. Read it and see for yourself:


That clear enough?

So go ahead and boycott, Democrats. Show us all that you are on board with Barack Obama's disdain for Israel and its Prime Minister. 

 But know that the country is not with you. Not even close.

And watch the erosion of Democrat support among Jews - which has fallen steadily during the Obama era - continue its downward momentum.

Nobody can say you aren't earning it..

@ 15:10 PM   Add Comment

DEBBIE WASSERMAN SCHULTZ'S SENATE CHANCES

Ken Berwitz

As you probably know, Debbie Wasserman Schultz (DWS) is a member of the House of Representatives, who represents an eminently safe Democrat seat in Florida. For several years, she has also Chaired the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

What you may not know, however, is that DWS appears to be interested in replacing Marco Rubio as U. S. Senator, in next year's election.

Does she have a chance? Sure she does.

Does she have a realistic chance? Well, read this excerpt from Edward-Isaac Dovere's article at politico.com before you answer:

The Democratic Senate Campaign Committee is far from enthusiastic, according to sources close to the committee. Asked about Wasserman Schultz specifically, DSCC spokesman Justin Barasky said only: "It seems like there's no one in the United States Senate who wants to be a senator less than Marco Rubio, and there are numerous potential candidates who could beat him."

The National Republican Senatorial Committee, meanwhile, seems exuberant at the chance to run against someone who's run into so much baggage on the national level.

"It's rare in Washington for President Obama and Senate Republicans to agree, but we are all in agreement that Debbie Wasserman Schultz has been a terrible DNC chair and would make an even worse Senate candidate," said NRSC spokeswoman Andrea Bozek.

Throughout her time as chair, Wasserman Schultz has turned off colleagues, other top Democrats and current and former staff for a management style that strikes many as self-centered - even for a politician - and often at the expense of the DNC or individual candidates or campaigns. Many top Democrats, including some she counts as supporters and friends, privately complain about her trying to use the DNC as a vehicle for her own personal promotion, and letting her own ambition get in the way of larger goals.

Does that look like Ms. Wasserman Schultz is a desirable candidate to you?  To members of either party?

It remains to be seen if DWS will decide to run anyway - i.e. her ego and self-importance will overwhelm her logic and common sense.  It certainly wouldn't be the first time that happened.

As a politcal blogger, I have to admit that I'm hoping she does - because, just this once, I would be fascinated to see DWS turn her tender mercies against Democrat primary opponents instead of Republicans. Let's see how they like her, er, style and substance.

Stay tuned.

@ 15:07 PM   Add Comment

THE NEW YORK TIMES VS. BENJAMIN NETANYAHU

Ken Berwitz

The New York Times, which has been a severe critic of Israel for as long as I can remember, is certainly holding true to form these days.

As you know Israel's Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, is coming to the United States and speaking before a joint session of congress on Tuesday, to remind us of something that President Obama apparently is incapable or unwilling to process - that you don't allow nuclear capability to the world's greatest exporter of terrorism, which has lied about its nuclear program from day one and will therefore have no problem lying about the way it will use any nuclear capability a “deal" would allow it.

Mr. Netanyahu, of course, has a very special interest in this situation, since Iran has specifically told the world it intends to wipe Israel off the map.

That may not be enough to prevent Barack Obama and his hopelessly useless stooge John Kerry from cutting a "deal" anyway, but I can assure you it got Mr. Netanyahu's attention.

In any event, as the Netanyahu visit, and speech to congress (and to AIPAC) draws near, the New York Times has published two articles which make its sentiments perfectly clear.

One was a Page 1 piece on Jeremy Bird, President Obama's Field Director for his 2012 campaign, who has gone to Israel to work at unseating Netanyahu in the coming Israeli elections.

That's a fascinating undertaking, given that the "reason" tossed out by Mr. Obama for opposing his speech and not meeting with him personally is that he does not want to get involved in another country's election process.

But read the Times article and you will find out that it's ok for his own field director to roost in Israel and work at getting rid of Netanyahu. Because, you see, Barack Obama did not specifically send Jeremy Bird there, he went on his own. It was just a coincidence, folks, nothing to see here, move along, move along.

And, not content with that pile of mung, The Times has also published an article which provides a White House "rebuttal" to the Netanyahu speech - before he makes it - and assures us that facilitating Iran's nuclear capability makes things safer, not less safe.

Just like it did in North Korea, guys?

Look, I get it. The Times is owned by self-hating Jews who find Israel an embarrassment. But - here's a news flash for them - some of us are foolish enough to believe that, for people whose existence has ongoingly been threatened for millennia - including right now, by the people Obama and Kerry are dealing with - there should be at least one viable homeland with defensible borders. And since that one Jewish homeland also is the one and only outpost of western civilization in the entire region, and has been a staunch ally of the USA since its creation, we should worry at least somewhat about Iran's overt commitment to vaporizing it - enough to stop them every way we can from going nuclear.

Anyway, that's my opinion:  certainly not the Times' opinion, but mine nonetheless. What's yours?

@ 15:01 PM   Add Comment

THE MEDIA ASSAULT ON SCOTT WALKER (CONT.)

Ken Berwitz

Evidently they ran out of things to dredge up from his pre-high school days...so they had to start making them up.

The Daily Beast put out a story that Scott Walker, that neanderthal mouth-breathing imbecile from Wisconsin (aka: a possible Republican presidential candidate) had  - can you believe this guy - cut the ability of state colleges and universities to report rapes which occur on campus.

Now THAT is a war on women. This woman-hating sicko should be summarily impeached, removed from office, tarred, feathered and run out of the state.......

..except... 

 ...it turns out he didn't do any such thing.

As reported in Nick Gass's article at politico.com (which, itself, is no stranger to Republican-bashing), actually Governor Walker did not do any such thing:

Another major media outlet has apologized after getting a story about Scott Walker wrong. Last week, it was the New York Times; now, it's The Daily Beast.

The Daily Beast has retracted an article from one of its college columnists that claimed that the Wisconsin governor's budget would cut sexual assault reporting from the state's universities.

The post, published Friday, cited a report from Jezebel that wrongly interpreted a section of the state budget to mean that all assault reporting requirements were to get cut altogether.

In fact, the University of Wisconsin system requested the deletion of the requirements to get rid of redundancy, as it already provides similar information to the federal government, UW System spokesman Alex Hummel told The Associated Press on Friday.

Whoops.

So what do you figure they'll try next?

 Maybe there's an old polarioid, somewhere, of Walker picking his nose in gym class? Or at the local newsstand leering at a cover of Playboy?

If there is a correlation between how worrisome a potential Republican candidate might be, and how hard some media will work to take that potential candidate down, then Scott Walker must be keeping these people up nights.

Oh, one other thing: how much coverage have you seen or heard about the fact that, while Secretary Of State, Hillary Clinton accumulated millions upon millions upon millions of dollars in her personal “foundation” from foreign governments - a true scandal that would be the death knell for most presidential hopefuls regardless of party?

I guess the prospect of a Clinton candidacy doesn't bother them a bit.

@ 14:55 PM   Add Comment

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