Thursday, 22 May 2008


Ken Berwitz

john hagee is a televangelist blowhard, one of the ones who get rich by fleecing their flocks, if you ask me.

Presumably because of the size of hagee's "congregation", John McCain sought out and accepted his endorsement.

Then we found out that hagee had made some stupid, offensive, disparaging remarks about Catholics.  He apologized for them (an apology I did not much believe in, as I mentioned in a blog just last week). 

Mr. McCain criticized him for making the comments but did not repudiate him altogether.

Now, however, it has come out that, about 10 years ago, hagee made the unbelievably looney-tunes comment that God had sent hitler to facilitate moving Jews to the state of Israel.  So help me, he said that.

I have read hagee's comments in context and do not believe he meant them in an anti-semitic way.  He seems to be a very strong supporter of Israel  It's more that he's either a religious nutcake or out of his mind completely.

In any event, that was the end for Mr. McCain.  Here are the particulars from Tom Bevan of

McCain Rejects Hagee Endorsement

A just issued statement from John McCain:

Obviously, I find these remarks and others deeply offensive and indefensible, and I repudiate them. I did not know of them before Reverend Hagee's endorsement, and I feel I must reject his endorsement as well. I have said I do not believe Senator Obama shares Reverend Wright's extreme views. But let me also be clear, Reverend Hagee was not and is not my pastor or spiritual advisor, and I did not attend his church for twenty years. I have denounced statements he made immediately upon learning of them, as I do again today.

McCain did what he had to do.  He dumped hagee.  In truth, he should have done it after the Catholic remarks came out. 

But McCain's point about jeremiah wright is well taken.  hagee was not his pastor.  He didn't sit in hagee's church for almost 20 years listening to him spew hatred and then look us in the eye and tell us he never heard what hagee said.  But Mr. Obama did exactly that with jeremiah wright.

Is this over?  Not in the least.  Because the McCain attackers will try everything they can to equate hagee with wright.  Watch and see.


Ken Berwitz

How can Hillary Clinton muzzle her husband?  She desperately needs to - not just for what's left of her campaign but for the future as well.

Here is part of an interview hubby bubba gave People magazine for its upcoming issue, as reported by  The off-the-wall comments are Bill Clinton's, the bold print is mine:

Madame President Clinton? Chelesa Clinton That Is

May 21, 2008 5:45 PM

ABC News' Ed O'Keefe Reports: Perhaps there will be a Madame President Clinton after all. No, not Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y.  How about former first daughter and active campaigner Chelsea Clinton?

"If you asked me (if Chelsea would run for office) before Iowa, I would have said, 'No way. She is too allergic to anything we do.' But she is really good at it," former President Bill Clinton tells PEOPLE magazine in their latest issue, hitting newsstands Friday.

In the PEOPLE exclusive, Clinton called his daughter's "emergence" the "second best thing" of the campaign, after his wife's "ability to endure in the face of all the blows that have been rained on her: outspent, dismissed, denigrated, declared dead...when I met her, I found that in her personal relationships she lacked self-confidence and was painfully shy. She is having more fun now than at the beginning. If you look at her, she seems perfectly relaxed, doesn't she?"

When asked what he's learned about Chelsea's political skills, Clinton told PEOPLE, "It all changed after Iowa. She realized her mother lost Iowa 100 percent because of younger voters. She was upset, bawled, went to her employer and said, 'Look, you got to let me go or give me an indefinite leave of absence. I'm not letting my mother go down like this.'"

The former president strongly rebuked the suggestion that the Clinton campaign ever played the race card against Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.

"I was really hurt about it at first. I am way over being hurt. This was cold-blooded, calculated, manipulated and a revolting strategy," Clinton said, in reference to the accusation that the Clinton camp stoked racial fears during his wife's bid.

When asked the seemingly open-ended question, "Is there anything you want voters to know?", Clinton replied, "When I was so tired, I either was not as precise as I should have been or I seemed angrier than I would have been. That's always my mistake. If I am to have any blame, that's it."

Clinton also said he didn't know Obama very well but called his wife's Democratic nomination rival "an immensely talented man" before adding, "I think I understand him. There are enough similarities in our childhoods and things that I think I get what he is doing. But I do think it's better to have made a lot of decisions before you get to be president."

Telling PEOPLE he speaks to his wife "probably three times a day", Clinton explained, "I got in the habit of not being an e-mailer when I was president because we had Newt Gingrich, who wanted to subpoena every e-mail ever written in the White House."

When asked whether the nomination fight would go all the way to the convention, Clinton replied, "It depends on what happens between now and then. It's been really funny that when when all she asked was to let all the votes be counted, the response from the other side was to pressure as many superdelegates as possible, in districts mostly that she carried, to come out against her."

What a treasure trove.  Bill Clinton has informed us, among other things, that:

-His wife was a mess until he met her;

-His daughter cries when she doesn't like the way things turn out;

-He and Barack Obama had similar childhoods (????!!!!);

-All poor Hillary wants is for those votes to count.

I'll skip by the comments about Clinton's wife and daughter because there's nothing to say about them.  Was it really necessary to impart that kind of information about his own family to the world?

And the part about asking only that votes be counted? I chalk that up to political humor.  Those votes were specifically NOT supposed to count and Hillary Clinton agreed to it.  Only when they became advantageous to her did she do her 180 political pirouette

But I can't leave the "similarities in our childhoods" line go.  It's way too rich. 

A few questions for Bill Clinton:

-What part of Kenya did your father come from?

-Where are all your Muslim relatives these days?

-What were your grades for the four years you spent being schooled in Indonesia?

-Did you enjoy prep school in Honolulu?

-And, finally, since you look like a White man but we have been told you were our first Black president, did you become half of each by just splitting the difference?

If ever a woman needed her man to shut the @$#*&@% up, Hillary needs it now.


Ken Berwitz

I just lifted this from the excellent site.  It was written by the equally excellent Mark Finkelstein.  Read it and shake your head in amazement:

Zbig's Moral Relativism, Spacey's Primary Confusion

By Mark Finkelstein | May 22, 2008 - 10:44 ET

Zbigniew Brzezinski says that since we talked to Likud, we should talk to Hamas. And Kevin Spacey, who has trouble keeping his disputed primary states straight, suggests that his "Recount" plays it straight, despite evidence to the contrary. All that and more on today's Morning Joe. In reverse order, let's begin with Zbig's appearance, and consider this statement.

ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI: I have joined a bi-partisan group of some prominent Americans including Paul Volcker, Brent Scowcroft, Lee Hamilton, and some others, in saying that talking to Hamas is a necessary course of action. You know, we talked to Likud when Likud was advocating the total incorporation of the West Bank into Israel. And today Likud accepts a two-state solution. Hamas will evolve, but it will not evolve if it is continuously ostracized and threatened.

View video here.

The advisability of talking with Hamas can be debated. But what kind of moral relativism equates Likud, which advocated a political position, with Hamas, which supports groups that target Israeli civilians with their missiles?

Earlier, Kevin Spacey made an extended appearance to tout "Recount," his new HBO movie about Florida 2000. He tried to portray the film as playing things down the middle.

View video here.

GEIST: Kevin, so many people feel like they were cheated out of this election, they felt like Al Gore should have been the president of the United States, and it's hard to argue that this country wouldn't look very different --

MIKA: Eight years later.

GEIST: If he had been president of the United States. Based on what you learned: you met with these people, you studied the story so closely. Do you feel like Al Gore was cheated?

KEVIN SPACEY: My feeling is that what I want people to do is to watch this film and reach their own conclusions.

Very noble. But there is much surrounding the film that belies the non-partisan gloss Spacey seeks to put on it. As MRC's Brent Baker has reported, Spacey "conceded on Wednesday's Countdown on MSNBC that 'the movie is done from the Democratic point of view.'

Dave Shiflett, reviewing "Recount" for, says the movie "portrays the Bush camp as a bunch of goons and loons" and that "Republicans in the movie are portrayed as dragons or drones." He adds: "The Democrats, by contrast, are simply trying to make every vote count."

Speaking of portraying Republicans as loons, MJ aired a clip from the movie of Laura Dern's depiction of Katherine Harris which makes the former FL Secretary of State out to be a messianic nut. See clip.

Spacey also let this little factoid slip in response to Pat Buchanan's question as to whether he's asked Al Gore about the movie:

SPACEY: I haven't. I did see Al Gore in Oslo. I was asked by the former Vice-President to host the Nobel Peace Prize concert last December.

Finally, whereas Willie lauded Spacey's knowledge of FL 2000, the Hollywood actor obviously needs to bone up on current political events.

GEIST: You know, it's so interesting, the timing of this, because just yesterday Hillary Clinton was down in Florida. The case she's making, she said it explicitly, she said Florida has learned the hard way what happens when the votes aren't all counted. So your film actually has a renewed relevance today, and throughout this election.

SPACEY: Well, I think she's making a point which is about Florida and I think, is it Vermont that is also in contention?


SPACEY: Michigan.

Michigan. Right.

Let me remind you - as I have so often in the past - that Zbigniew Brzezinski is a valued member of Barack Obama's staff.  And they wonder why Jews who usually vote Democratic are in play this year?

Well, at least Kevin Spacey has the appropriate last name.


Ken Berwitz

Here is the latest salvo against John McCain (thus for their hero, Barack Obama).  It excerpted from the Washington Post story and is now featured on the web site for "neutral" NBC in concert with its little associate MSNBC.  Please take special note of what I've put in bold print:

McCain adviser rebuked for work with dictators

Clients included notorious rulers Savimbi, Marcos, Sese Seko, Siad Barre

Republican presidential candidate, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., left, speaks to advisor Charlie Black, aboard the campaign airplane in route to Washington, on Monday, April 7.
Mary Altaffer / AP file

By Michael D. Shear and Jeffrey H. Birnbaum
updated 4:06 a.m. ET, Thurs., May. 22, 2008

Longtime uber-lobbyist Charles R. Black Jr. is John McCain's man in Washington, a political maestro who is hoping to guide his friend, the senator from Arizona, to the presidency this November.

But for half a decade in the 1980s, Black was also Jonas Savimbi's man in the capital city. His lobbying firm received millions from the brutal Angolan guerrilla leader and took advantage of Black's contacts in Congress and the White House.

Justice Department records that Black's firm submitted under the Foreign Agents Registration Act detail frequent meetings with lawmakers and their staffs and lavish spending by Black and his partners as they attempted to ensure support for Savimbi, whose UNITA movement was fighting the Marxist Angolan government.

Then in his 30s, Black already had established himself as a pioneer of the revolving door between campaign consulting and lobbying, having been a senior adviser on President Ronald Reagan's reelection campaign before returning to K Street. And his clients, as often as not, were foreign leaders eager to burnish their reputations.

In addition to Savimbi, Black and his partners were at times registered foreign agents for a remarkable collection of U.S.-backed foreign leaders whose human rights records were sometimes harshly criticized, even as their opposition to communism was embraced by American conservatives. They included Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos, Mobutu Sese Seko of Zaire, Nigerian Gen. Ibrahim Babangida, Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre, and the countries of Kenya and Equatorial Guinea, among others.

Got that?  He lobbied for a head of state who was fighting communist insurgency, and for a "remarkable collection of U.S.-backed foreign leaders"

This is what the Post and NBC/MSNBC are trying to nail McCain on.  A senior advisor who lobbied for anti-communists and U.S. backed governments.

What would they have said if he'd lobbied for the communist insurgency?  Or a collection of leaders who the U.S. was against?

I have a few pieces of news for these "neutral" journalists:

-There are some parts of the world where there are no good guys.  None of them.  And trashing Charles Black for dealing with the better of the choices is stupid.

-When you do this, you bring dishonor upon yourselves and shred your professional credibility.  Does this mean anything at all to you?

-To MSNBC in particular:  Since you are using a combination of Barack Obama-loving Chris Mouthews and Barack Obama-loving keith olbermann to report primary results and provide analysis, forget that second point.  We already know what professional credibility means to you.


Ken Berwitz

Sometimes you read stuff like this and wonder what planet the publisher's brain was on when he/she allowed it to be in one of the paper's articles.

Yesterday's International Herald-Tribune (whose parent company, it should be noted, is the New York Times) has a feature article about why Jews in Florida are not flocking to support Barack Obama. 


In the article we are informed that: recent presidential elections, Jews have drifted somewhat to the right. Because Obama is relatively new on the national stage, his rsum of Senate votes in support of Israel is short, as is his list of high-profile visits to synagogues and delis. So far, his overtures to Jews have been limited: aside from a few speeches and interviews, he has left most of it to surrogates.


Let's start with the claim, minus any evidence, that Jews have drifted to the right in recent presidential elections.  It is ludicrous. A vast majority of Jews voted for both John Kerry (74% of the Jewish vote based on exit polls) and Al Gore (79%) against President Bush.  Is that recent enough for you?  The so-called rightward drift, therefore, is all the way down to 74% Democratic support. 

Is that directionally downward?  Yes it is.  Can that seriously be characterized as a rightward drift among Jews?  Oh, please. 

Now let's get to the insulting part, in which the article tells us that Jews are worried about Obama because he hasn't made enough speeches in synagogues or eaten in enough delis. 

The writer of this didsainful blow-off is named Jodi Kantor - whose name suggests she might well be Jewish herself.  Is that what she thinks Jewish voters, as a group, base their decision on?  Whether Obama shows up at the local synagogue?  Or whether he had a corned beef on rye at Rascals**?  Does she think Jewish voters will come flocking to Obama if he leads a march to demand that they re-open Pumpernick's**?

Has it occurred to Ms. Kantor that Barack Obama's two decade relationship with jeremiah wright, a hate-filled pastor who calls Israel "a dirty word" and "an apartheid state" might be more of a reason? 

Or how about the fact that Mr. Obama stayed in the church after it gave last year's lifetime achievement award to career Jew-hater louis farrakhan and drooled out that he "epitomizes greatness"? 

Or maybe it's because Obama put jeremiah wright on his staff, along with other Israel critics and bashers like Zbigniew Brzezinski, Samantha Power, Joe Circincione and Robert Malley (oh, excuse me, Malley says he only ADVISED Obama, that's much more comforting).  Could that have something to do with it?

Nah, that's all small potatoes.  The big reason is that he hasn't made enough speeches at synagogues and doesn't frequent delis.  That's the real deal, straight from the "neutral", New York Times-owned International Herald-Tribune.

This is the kind of "journalism" that will turn your stomach faster than a bad corned beef sandwich. 


**Rascals is deli in Miami that is popular with Jewish diners.  Pumpernick's also was but is now closed.

IN ADDITION:  It has been suggested to me that I show more of the article, because of how completely it genuflects at the feet of Barack Obama. 

Ok, here is another part of the article, in which Kantor is nice enough to show what a bunch of ignorant fools old Jews in Florida are - because their opinions don't jibe with hers:

Because of a dispute over moving the date of the state's primary, Obama and the other Democratic candidates did not campaign in Florida. But in his absence, novel and exotic rumors about Obama have flourished. Among many older Jews, and some younger ones, as well, he has become a conduit for Jewish anxiety about Israel, Iran, anti-Semitism and race.

Obama is Arab, Jack Stern's friends told him in Aventura. (He's not.)

He is a part of Chicago's large Palestinian community, suspects Mindy Chotiner of Delray. (Wrong again.)

Wright is the godfather of Obama's children, asserted Violet Darling in Boca Raton. (No, he's not.)

Al Qaeda is backing him, said Helena Lefkowicz of Fort Lauderdale (Incorrect.)

Michelle Obama has proven so hostile and argumentative that the campaign is keeping her silent, said Joyce Rozen of Pompano Beach. (Michelle Obama campaigns frequently, drawing crowds in her own right.)

He might fill his administration with followers of Louis Farrakhan, worried Sherry Ziegler. (Extremely unlikely, given his denunciation of Farrakhan.)

There you have it.  Those old Jews are a bunch of idiots, aren't they?  Feel better, Ms. Kantor. 

-Did you ask any NON Jews about THEIR opinions regarding Obama to give this a shred of balance?  Nope.

-Did you ask any Obama supporters what they think of McCain, and then gleefully show us what they said wrong or what they said that you disagree with, the way you did with Jews who are against Obama?  Nope.

Kantor also goes on in the article to "prove" Obama is everything good and whatever these Jew clowns say about him is wrong.  Much of her "proof" is grounded in her own pro-Obama fawning, not in facts.  But that's the way it goes.

People like this make me sick.  And "newspapers" who publish garbage like this make me sicker.


Ken Berwitz

A lot has been said in recent days about how low President Bush's approval ratings are. 

Well, since I was at the web site for the previous blog, I took a peek at their poll data on how he is doing versus the Democratic congress.  And here is what I found out:

In other words, looking across the various polls, President Bush has an extremely low average approval rating of 30.5%.  And congress has a through-the-trapdoor average of 18.7%.

So when do media talk about how incredibly low the Democratic congress' approval ratings are?  Ever?

But listen to them squeal like stuck pigs if you call them biased.


Ken Berwitz

Yesterday I reported that a French court exonerated the blogger who called the Mohammed Al-Dura event a fraud, by overturning his libel conviction. 

Blogger Phillippe Karsenty accused France 2, the French public TV station, of fraudulently staging Israeli involvement in the "death" of 12 year old Al-Dura while he was helpless up against a wall with his father trying to protect him.  

It is hard to overstate the importance of this event, therefore of the ruling.  The entire Arab and Muslim world was infuriated by this so-called murder.  For years it has been an unending source of anti-Israeli propaganda for them.  But now it is clear that Israel had nothing to do with Al-Dura's death.

The ruling came down yesterday.  And Karsenty was exonerated because the defense made mincemeat of the footage France 2 used in their report.  It showed the court that the "event" was staged and that the conclusions about Israeli soldiers were the result of France 2's hit job.

So how was this news covered today?

-New York Times:  Not in the newspaper. (the NBC site):  Not on the website  Not on the web site  Not on the website  Not on the web site

But listen to them squeal like stuck pigs if you call them biased.

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