Wednesday, 14 May 2008

UNCENSORED TV MELTDOWNS

Ken Berwitz

I found this on www.drudgereport.com today.  It comes to them/us from www.gawker.com.  It is a grouping of ten truly angry meltdowns by various TV personalities. 

I warn you:  The language, both verbal and body, is not very genteel.  It is completely uncensored.  Get my drift?

Ok, you're warned.  Now click on the video link below and see for yourself.  I don't advise drinking anything while it's on.  Spewing liquid can ruin a keyboard.

Click here , then click on the video screen that appears.

 

Well, you can't say they don't express themselves.................


YOU CAN'T MAKE THIS STUFF UP (CONT.)

Ken Berwitz

Here is the latest installment of the "you can't make this stuff up" series.  It comes to us from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, with special thanks to an intrepid seaman and his gasoline pump.

Boater pumps 100 gallons of gas in wrong hole

PORT SALERNO - Members of the Martin County Fire Rescue Hazmat team responded to a fuel clean-up Tuesday morning after a boater pumped gasoline into his fishing rod holder instead of his gas tank.

The boater pumped about 100 gallons of gasoline at the Finest Kind Marina fuel dock before he noticed the problem, but only about 15 gallons polluted the water, marina employees said.

The rest of the gasoline seeped into the boat's bilge tank, witnesses said.

The man's fishing boat was towed from the fuel dock to Sandsprit Park so Hazmat officials could secure the fuel, said Jeff Alter, Fire Rescue bureau chief.

Marina employees said it's not uncommon to see boaters pump fuel into fishing rod holders because the holder is often close to the fuel tank hole.

For his wife's sake, I hope this guy is better at sexual intercourse......


OBAMA AND "SWEETIE"

Ken Berwitz

Earlier today, Barack Obama referred to a female reporter, Peggy Agar of WXYZ TV, Detroit, as "sweetie".  He has apparently done this before with others (I don't know if they are all reporters).

Mr. Obama forwarded the following apology to Ms. Agar:

"Hi Peggy. This is Barack Obama. I'm calling to apologize on two fronts. One was you didn't get your question answered and I apologize. I thought that we had set up interviews with all the local stations. I guess we got it with your station but you weren't the reporter that got the interview. And so, I broke my word. I apologize for that and I will make up for it.

"Second apology is for using the word 'sweetie.' That's a bad habit of mine. I do it sometimes with all kinds of people. I mean no disrespect and so I am duly chastened on that front. Feel free to call me back. I expect that my press team will be happy to try to make it up to you whenever we are in Detroit next."

The one and only reason I am mentioning this incident is that, since some people are going to make a big deal of it, I want to assure you that I consider it absolutely nothing with nothing. 

Mr. Obama is in a presidential campaign.  He is careening from one stop to another.  He is probably getting very little sleep, and what sleep he does get is probably sporadic in nature.  It is entirely expectable that he's going to slip here and there. 

If this is the worst thing he says to a reporter, he's going to have a great campaign.

Readers of this blog know that I have a lot of problems with Mr. Obama.  But inadvertently calling a female reporter "sweetie", and then apologizing for it as well as he did (read what he said again, see for yourself), is not one of them.

Let's move past this, ok?  Good.

Ken Berwitz Nancy --- If I thought Barack Obama meant that toss-off comment the way you are taking it, I would agree with you. But I don't at all think he did. I've seen and heard Mr. Obama for over a half year as he's run for President and never got even the slightest inkling he disrespects women. (05/15/08)

Nancy Calling a professional woman "sweetie" in the work place is like calling a black man "boy". You simply don't call a person you don't know "sweetie" if you respect them as a professional. It is shocking. This is what daily gender discirmintion looks like. The drip drip drip of disrespect. Alas, it says a lot about how Obama views women. (05/15/08)


RACISM AND THE DEMOCRATIC VOTE

Ken Berwitz

Here are the ingredients:

-West Virginia went 67% to 26% for Hillary Clinton over Barack Obama;

-The state has a great many blue collar White voters;

-The state has a great many White voters who did not graduate college;

-The state has relatively few Black voters;

-Media, by and large, are clearly favoring Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton.

Put them all together and what have you got?  You've got a race story to explain away Ms. Clinton's win.

Is it fair to sit on the racial aspect of this victory?  Well, yes and no.

Yes, in the sense that it almost certainly is true.  I think we'll all agree that White laborers without a college education are a lot more likely to reject Barack Obama because he is Black than, say, the faculty at Harvard.

No, in the sense that it is an unfair playing field, because these same media did not ascribe the identical issue - racism - to Barack Obama's victories in numerous other states. (Would that same Harvard faculty prefer him for his skin color?  Count on it).

Simply stated, the more Black people in a given state, the better Mr. Obama did in that state's primary.

Black voters, like West Virginia voters, have a greater incidence of being blue collar workers without college educations.  If White voters, who went more than 2 to 1 for Hillary Clinton in West Virginia, are racists, what are Black voters who go almost 9 to 1 for Barack Obama throughout the primaries?

Why do media not dare to call this what it is?  Are they afraid of being attacked as racist for simply reporting reality?  And, if so, is that why so many in the media are so clearly in the tank for Mr. Obama too?

This insistence on treating the same issue differently, based on skin color, is a major problem to me.  I hope it is a major problem to you also. 

If Barack Obama wins the nomination, he is going to be enormously damaged in the general election by his weakness among White/blue collar/non college voters. 

If Hillary Clinton wins the nomination, she is going to be enormously damaged in the general election by defections among Black/bluecollar/non college voters.

In either case, John McCain will be the beneficiary.  McCain is straight out of central casting - a White Protestant candidate, just like virtually every other candidate and all but one President in this country's history.  

-If Obama wins, McCain will gain among racially motivated Democratic voters.  Specifically he will gain because of Whites who will not vote for a Black man.  They might vote for McCain, they might vote for Bob Barr or they might not vote at all.  But they all will drop from the Obama total.

-If Clinton wins, McCain will gain among racially motivated Democratic voters.  Specifically he will gain because of Blacks who will refuse to support Hillary Clinton on the grounds that she torpedoed a viable Black candidate to become the nominee.  A few might vote for McCain.  Most will either write in Barack Obama or just not vote for President at all.  But they all will drop from the Clinton total.

Whether we like it or not, race is going to be an extremely important, possibly even deciding, factor in this election.  And, albeit for very different reasons, this is no more or less true for either Democratic candidate.


THE MEANING OF WEST VIRGINIA

Ken Berwitz

Hillary Clinton overran Barack Obama in yesterday's West Virginia primary.

The sense I got from reading/listening to various so-called "experts" beforehand was that she would probably win by something like 30%.  (Hillary's spokesperson, Howard Wolfson, cleverly if dishonestly mentioned a 15% win on the Today show yesterday, presumably so that the bigger win would look even more impressive).

Actually, when all the votes were in, Ms. Clinton won by 41%, with 67% of the vote to 26% for Mr. Obama.  

Now, what does it mean?

What it means is that Hillary Clinton is a significantly stronger candidate than Barack Obama among blue collar White voters.  And therefore a significantly stronger candidate for Democrats in the general election.

West Virginia is the latest in a string of states where this is evident.  And several of those states, including Ohio and Pennsylvania as well as West Virginia, are swing states which can decide the presidential election.

It is a factor that will affect other key states as well, including Wisconsin, Oregon, Minnesota, Michigan and Florida.  Every one of these states is weaker for Democrats if Barack Obama is the candidate. 

As an individual state, West Virginia is small potatoes.  Its 5 electoral votes are unlikely to turn the election.  But what the West Virginia vote confirms about the two candidates is huge.

My next blog will talk about how race played into the West Virginia primary - both by itself and compared to other primaries - and how racism will hurt Democrats in a general election regardless of whether the candidate is Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton.


ACADEMIC EXOTICA AT COLORADO U.

Ken Berwitz

My wife and I enjoy going to museums and zoos.  One of the reasons is that they sometimes have special exhibits;  works of art, or exotic animals, that you do not expect to find as a matter of course.  They are shown for a limited period of time and then are gone.

This came to mind when reading the following story (which comes to us from the Rocky Mountain News), about Colorado University's decision to have a special exhibi....er, small number of conservative academics at the school:

CU may host conservative cast of profs

$9 million plan seeks diversity at liberal campus

The University of Colorado is considering a $9 million program to bring high-profile political conservatives to teach on the left-leaning Boulder campus.

Critics say it's an idea whose time should never come.

CU officials want to create an endowment for a Visiting Chair in Conservative Thought and Policy.

The program would bring a rotating cast of scholars, historians, politicians and media personalities to a town often ridiculed by the political right as "the People's Republic of Boulder."

The first scholar could be on campus next year for a one- or two-year stint, CU spokesman Bronson Hilliard said. University officials said they hope the fund would yield the $200,000-plus per year necessary to provide a stipend and a staff person.

"A good campus is always trying to find ways to add diversity of thought and scholarship," Hilliard said.

"It's not designed to be a thumb in the eye to anyone's progressive politics."

Names tossed out include Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, conservative columnist George Will and neoconservative pundit William Kristol, editor of The Weekly Standard.

The most vocal criticism so far is coming from the right.

"Like Margaret Mead among the Samoans, they're planning to study conservatives. That's hilarious," Will told The Wall Street Journal in a story pubished Tuesday.

Conservative activists have long targeted the Boulder campus for its liberal bent and sought to correct it.

CU political science professor emeritus Ed Rozek recently bought an ad in the Daily Camera in which he tallied voter registration records of faculty and administrators.

Rozek's finding: Of 825 faculty members in arts and sciences, business, education, journalism and law, he found only 23 registered Republicans.

Rozek did not break out the number of registered Democrats or independents.

Still, Rozek said he found the idea of an endowed chair in conservative views "humorous" and said it smacks of tokenism.

"What is needed is pluralism of ideas, meaning no political party has a monopoly on any campus," Rozek said. "All views - socialism, communism, democracy - should be discussed."

Rozek said he would prefer 10 visiting scholars from the world's leading institutions of higher learning coming to teach at Boulder every year.

Republican and Regent Tom Lucero said he, too, was disappointed in the narrow focus of the endowed chair.

"Part of what our goal and intent is is to widen the debate," Lucero said.

"The way you widen the debate is by casting the description in much broader terms. It should not come down to a debate of conservative vs. liberal."

Hilliard said the endowed chair is not a token gesture.

He said Chancellor Bud Peterson signed on to the effort - in the works for at least a decade - as soon as he started on the job.

Peterson was at a conference Tuesday and unavailable for comment.

"Conservative thought has been extremely influential in economics and dominated the political landscape for the last 30 years," Hilliard said.

Regent chairwoman and Republican Pat Hayes said she was disappointed by the opposition from other Republicans.

"To do this chair for conservative thought and policy is a great opportunity for the university," she said.

"Why not embrace it and say, 'Congratulations, university. We think you're going the right direction.' "

Unbelievable.  All this self-congratulation, and what for?  Because a school that is tilted entirely to one side has decided to bring in an exotic exhibit of a few people from the other side for the amusement of its already-indoctrinated student body? 

And don't you love that line I put in bold print?  A combination apology to the left and assurance that, honest guys, we aren't trying to offend you or anything, we promise we'll still be just as one sided as we are now.

Is this farce supposed to make anyone think that students at Colorado University will now get a broad spectrum of opinion?  Is this a sincere effort to "....find ways to add diversity and scholarship"?

Here's a way the trustees apparently have not come up with yet.  How about having a faculty that is derived from both sides of the political aisle.  Not a faculty that is virtually all-left with a couple of imported exhibits?

Don't hold your breath waiting for that to happen.  And don't think this situation is in any way unique to Colorado University either.

free From an article I read about this yesterday they said the teacher may not even be a conservative. They said that the teachers that teach french aren't all from france. It would be interesting to see how a liberal would go about teaching a class on conservatism. (05/14/08)


RUBEN NAVARRETTE JR.: AAR STOOGE

Ken Berwitz

Ruben Navarette Jr. is a member of the editorial board of the San Diego Union-Tribune, a syndicated columnist and occasionally does commentary for CNN.com.

He is also an Affirmative Action Racism stooge.

His latest commentary for CNN is a celebration of racist whining.  But Mr. Navarrette makes it very clear that he doesn't consider his racist characterizations to be racism at all.  They somehow doesn't count.  Only White people who vote against Barack Obama are racist, you see, not someone who generalizes about Whites as a group.  That's not racism, thats....er.....something else.

You can read Mr. Navarrette's entire commentary by clicking here.  But I would like to comment on one particular part of it:

Some want to know why it isn't racist when 70 percent of African-Americans vote for Obama but it is when 70 percent of whites vote against him.

The answer has to do with history. Over the decades, black Americans have had plenty of opportunities to vote for white people for president. And they have done so. But this is the first time that white Americans have a chance to vote for an African-American with a shot at the presidency. And what are they doing?

It is for idiocy like this that I coined the term AAR. 

If 70% of White people in West Virginia vote for Hillary Clinton they are racists.  But if 90% (not 70%, Mr. Navarrette, 90%) of Blacks vote for Barack Obama there is no racism involved??????? 

And what is the basis for this remarkable comment?  Navarrette tells us that Black people have voted for White presidential candidates in the past, but this is the first time Whites could vote for a Black presidential candidate (not true again.  Someone introduce Navarrette to Jesse Jackson.  Or Al Sharpton).

But, pretending for a moment that Mr. Navarrette knows what he is talking about, his conclusion is that Whites must be racist if, given the chance to vote for a Black, most do not do so.  By contrast, Blacks, who vote overwhelmingly for a Black when given the chance are not racist because this is their first chance to vote along racial lines. 

????????????????????????

This is the logic Navarrette brings to his newspaper's EDITORIAL PAGE????

Mr. Navarrette - that IS racist.  That is PRECISELY what racism is.  Incredibly, Navarrette acknowledges that it is a race-based vote and then dismisses it on the grounds that Blacks should get a free pass.  Even if his apologia for racist voting were correct, it wouldn't change the fact that it is racist voting.

Let me repeat:  Navarrette is saying that this is the first chance Blacks have had to vote by race in a presidential contest.  They are doing so.  And therefore it isn't a racist vote.

To say the least, I have a bit of trouble with this "logic".  I suspect the Mad Hatter would have trouble with this "logic".  But it makes perfect sense to Ruben Navarrette Jr.

I think I am going to start reading the San Diego Union-Tribune editorials.  If this is how Navarrette writes about racism, they must be a hoot and a half.


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