Tuesday, 28 October 2008


Ken Berwitz

Mainstream media have made it clear they have virtually no interest in finding out where Barack Obama disbursed tens of millions, possibly over 100 million, dollars in educational grant money.

In the hope that you might feel a bit differently, here is a fact-filled article from Fox News, which blows the lid off of this information - information that the others are dilligently hiding from voters, at least until the election results are in.  The bold print is mine:

Obama's Education Groups Funded Controversial Organizations in the '90s, Tax Returns Show

Barack Obama's boards gave tens of thousands to ACORN and more than $1 million to racially charged organizations, a study of tax returns shows.


Monday, October 27, 2008

The Annenberg Challenge and the Woods Fund of Chicago funded numerous controversial groups while Barack Obama served on their boards between 1995 and 2002, an analysis of their tax returns shows.

In 2001, when Obama was a part-time director of The Woods Fund of Chicago, it gave $75,000 to ACORN, the voter registration group now under investigation for voter fraud in 12 states.

The Woods Fund also gave $6,000 to the Rev. Jeremiah Wright's Trinity United Church of Christ, which Obama attended. The reason for the donation to the church is unclear -- it is simply listed as "for special purposes" in the group's IRS tax form.

It gave a further $60,000 to the Children and Family Justice Center at Northwestern University, which was founded and run by Bernardine Dohrn, the wife of domestic terrorist William Ayers and, with her husband, a former member of the 1960s radical group the Weather Underground.

Other controversial donations that year included $50,000 to the Small Schools Network -- which was founded by Ayers and run by Michael Klonsky, a friend of Ayers' and the former chairman of the Communist Party (Marxist-Leninist), an offshoot of the 1960s radical group Students for a Democratic Society -- and $40,000 to the Arab American Action Network, which critics have accused of being anti-Semitic.

The Woods Fund did not respond to questions about the funding.

When Obama co-chaired the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, which calls itself "a public-private partnership improving education for 1.5 million urban and rural public school students," it gave to some of the same groups -- partnering with ACORN to manage funding for schools and giving over $1 million to the Small Schools Network.

It also gave nearly $1 million to a group called the South Shore African Village Collaborative, whose goals, according to Annenberg's archived Web site, are "to develop more collegial relationships between teachers and principals. Professional development topics include school leadership, team building, parent and community involvement, developing thematic units, instructional strategies, strategic planning, and distance learning and teleconferencing."

But the group mentions other goals in its grant application to the Annenberg Challenge:

"Our children need to understand the historical context of our struggles for liberation from those forces that seek to destroy us," one page of the application reads.

Click here to see the application.

Stanley Kurtz, a Senior Fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, found the collaborative's original application when going through Annenberg's archives.

Asked to comment, Yvonne Williams-Kinnison, executive director of the collaborative's parent group, the Coalition for Improved Education in South Shore said, "I don't want to put more fuel on the fire. You can call us back after the election.... I don't want to compromise the position."

Late Afrocentrist scholars Jacob Carruthers and Asa Hilliard were both invited to give SSAVC teachers a training session, the Chicago Annenberg Challenge noted in a report, adding that the "consciousness raising session ... received rave reviews, and has prepared the way for the curriculum readiness survey session."

But Carruthers has been a controversial figure because of inflammatory statements he made in writing.

"The submission to Western civilization and its most outstanding offspring, American civilization, is, in reality, surrender to white supremacy," Carruthers wrote in his 1999 book, "Intellectual Warfare." "Some of us have chosen to reject the culture of our oppressors and recover our disrupted ancestral culture."

In the book, he compared the process of blacks assimilating into American culture with rape.

"We may not be able to get our virginity back after the rape, but we do not have to marry the rapist," Carruthers said.

Hilliard has come under fire for advocating what many consider an extreme Afrocentric curriculum.

He selected the articles for the "African-American Baseline Essays" published in 1987 and first used in the Portland, Ore., school district. The essays have been criticized for claiming, among other things, that ancient Egyptians were the first to discover manned flight and the theory of evolution.

An Obama spokesman called investigation of these ties "pathetic."

"This is another pathetic attempt by FOX News to distract voters from the economic challenges facing this nation by patching together tenuous links to smear Barack Obama," Obama spokesman Ben LaBolt told FOXNews.com.

"The Annenberg Challenge was a bipartisan organization dedicated to improving the performance of students and teachers in Chicago Public Schools that was funded by a Republican philanthropist who was friends with President Reagan and launched by Republican Gov. Jim Edgar."

But Kurtz says those founders of the Annenberg Challenge would not have known the details about to whom their Chicago office -- one of 18 around the country -- was giving money.

"If you read Ayers' proposal to Annenberg, it doesn't sound radical. But if you actually read Ayers' education writings, they are very radical indeed," Kurtz said. "Ayers, like so many other savvy professors, knows enough not to state his actual views frankly when applying for money. But you can find the truth in his writings."

The controversial donations make up only a small portion of the overall amount doled out by the Annenberg and Woods funds. The Woods Fund gave over $3.5 million to 115 different groups in 2001, and the Annenberg Chellenge dispensed nearly $11 million to 63 groups at its height in 1999.

Most of the groups are mainstream and well respected, ranging from the Jazz Institute of Chicago to the Successful Schools Project.

But Kurtz says that this should not obscure what he describes as controversial donations.

"If John McCain had given to white supremacist groups and people said, 'Hey, the majority of funding didn't go to supremacist groups' -- that wouldn't even cut the ice," Kurtz said.

"I feel certain [Obama] knew about these radical groups," Kurtz said. "We know that he read the applications because he made statements about the quality of proposals."


I especially love that one-size-fits-all attack on Fox for daring to expose Barack Obama's actions.

When it comes to reporting BOTH sides, it seems to me that Fox is doing at least a creditable job.  Unless, of course, "fair and balanced" means suppressing information that would be damaging to one of the candidates to maximize his chances of winning the election.  If that's what it means, NBC, CBS and, to a slightly lesser degree, ABC are doing a far better job than Fox.




Ken Berwitz

Today's lead story in the New York Times is about senator Ted Stevens.  Its headline is SENATOR IS GUILTY OVER HIS FAILURES TO DISCLOSE GIFTS (yes, unlike any other headline on the front page, this one is entirely in capital letters).

Stevens, from Alaska (population 670,000), was convicted on 7 counts of corruption involving a total of about $250,000.

But this is not the only major political corruption story today.

Kwame Kilpatrick, the former Mayor of Detroit (population 919,000) who resigned in disgrace just last month, is starting his jail sentence today.  Kilpatrick is convicted of two felony counts of obstruction of justice.  He has to pay restitution of $1,000,000 (or as much of it as he can scrape up, after spending tons of money on lavish personal excesses). It is estimated that this case has cost Detroit $14,000,000.

You may have noticed that I didn't mention the New York Times headline for the article telling readers about kwame kilpatrick going to jail today.  That is because there is none.

It isn't the lead story.  It isn't the page 1 story.  It isn't buried somewhere else in the news section.  There isn't any story at all.  If you read the New York Times you do not know that this is happening.

Oh, did I mention that kilpatrick was a huge Barack Obama supporter?  I wonder if that has anything to do with the Times burying this story completely, even as it gives the Alaska Senator lead story status.

Remind me: where is Sarah Palin from?


Ken Berwitz

There is a tape of Barack Obama wining and dining with the most viciously anti-Semitic, anti-Israel forces imaginable. 

On it, Mr. Obama sits by acceptingly as they bash Israel one after the other, and accepts great praise from a Jew-hating, Israel-hating "professor" who wholeheartedly endorses him for the US Senate. 

And Mr. Obama warmly toasts the anti-Semitic Israel hating professor, while gushing about how close they are.

This is not a fantasy.  It is not a joke.  This happened and there is a video tape of it.  How do I know?  The LA Times has acknowledged it has a copy.

It is almost impossible to believe a major newspaper would have this tape, but intentionally not release it so that voters would be ignorant of what it shows before making their decision on election day.

That's right, it is almost impossible.  Not completely.  Because that is exactly what is happening.  Read this incredible, fully referenced piece from www.gatewaypundit.blogspot.com and see for yourself:

Confirmed: MSM Holds Video Of Barack Obama Attending Jew-Bash & Toasting a Former PLO Operative... Refuse to Release the Video!

Introduction: The LA Times is holding a video that shows Barack Obama celebrating with a group of Palestinians who are openly hostile towards Israel. Barack Obama even gives a toast to a former PLO operative at this celebration. If the American public saw this side of Barack Obama he would never be elected president.
But, the media refuses to release this video.

LA Times writer
Peter Wallsten wrote about Barack Obama's close association with former Palestinian operative Rashid Khalidi back in April.
Wallsten discussed a dinner held back in 2003 in honor of Khalidi, a critic of Israel and advocate for Palestinian rights.
Barack Obama has
denied his close association with Khalidi, too.

According to
Wallsten the evening not surprisingly turned into a classic Jew-bash:

"During the dinner a young Palestinian American recited a poem accusing the Israeli government of terrorism in its treatment of Palestinians and sharply criticizing U.S. support of Israel. If Palestinians cannot secure their own land, she said, "then you will never see a day of peace."

One speaker likened "Zionist settlers on the West Bank" to Osama bin Laden, saying both had been "blinded by ideology."
Barack Obama also praised the former PLO operative during the event.
And, Obama confessed that his family often shared dinner with the Khalidis:

His many talks with the Khalidis, Obama said, had been "consistent reminders to me of my own blind spots and my own biases... It's for that reason that I'm hoping that, for many years to come, we continue that conversation -- a conversation that is necessary not just around Mona and Rashid's dinner table," but around "this entire world."

...The event was videotaped, and a copy of the tape was obtained by The Times.
Khalidi and the Obamas were great friends in Chicago and often shared meals together.
By the way, Khalidi was also
best friends with Bill Ayers.

Terrorist Bill Ayers--- Barack Obama--- Jew-hater Rashid Khalidi

On Wednesday I talked with Peter Wallsten from the Los Angeles Times about the article on Obama and Khalidi:

Wallston was one of the few mainstream media reporters to report on this radical Obama associate.

Wallston said that the article was written after he watched video taken at the Khalidi going away party. When I asked him about the video he said that as far as he was concerned he was through with the story.

I asked him if he was planning on releasing this video of Obama toasting the radical Khalidi at this Jew-bash. He told me he was not releasing the video. He also would not comment on his source for the video. Wallston also said he did not know if Khalidi's good friend Bill Ayers was at the event or not.
So, there you have it.
The LA Times has video of Obama toasting a former PLO operative at a Jew-bash but will not release the video.
This is outrageous.
Obviously, this video would do great damage to Obama who
struggles with Jewish voters due to his circle of close anti-Semitic friends.
Maybe this is the reason it is not being released?

More on Khalidi---
Not only does Barack Obama's church of 20 years
support Hamas and Hezbollah but Barack Obama also has a longtime close friendship and financial association with suspected former PLO operative and Israel hater Rashid Khalidi.
Earlier this month
Sean Hannity dared to report on Barack and Michelle Obama's radical associate and friend, Rashid Khalidi:

Barack Obama
funnelled thousands of dollars of cash to Rashidi's anti-Israel Foundation through his work on the Woods Fund.

In 2000, Rashid Khalidi, a former PLO operative who justified Palestinian terrorism as contributing to "political enlightenment,"
threw a fundraiser for his friend Barack Obama.

Although he is described as a former PLO operative, via
Free Republic, this is what Rashid Khalidi has to say about Palestinian terrorism against Jews-- he said anti-Israel violence contributed to "political enlightenment":

On Palestinian violence. Khalidi glorifies anti-Israel violence as contributing to political enlightenment[vii] and unsurprisingly admires those who carry it out. His loyalty to Palestinian terrorist groups run so deep that he actually dedicated his 1986 valentine to the PLO, Under Siege, to those who gave their lives . . . in defense of the cause of Palestine and independence of Lebanon.[viii] The book whitewashes PLO violence against Israelis and Lebanese, as well as the Syrian occupation.
Khalidi and Ayers were practically best friends.
And, both
Ayers and Obama signed the commemorative book given to Khalidi at his going away party:

In Chicago, the Khalidis founded the Arab American Action Network, and Mona Khalidi served as its president. A big farewell dinner was held in their honor by AAAN with a commemorative book filled with testimonials from their friends and political allies. These included the left wing anti-war group Not In My Name, the Electronic Intifada, and the ex-Weatherman domestic terrorists Bernadine Dohrn and Bill Ayers. (There were also testimonials from then-state Senator Barack Obama and the mayor of Chicago.)
It's hard to imagine that the LA Times would hold onto a video of Sarah Palin praising an anti-Semitic radical and former PLO operative...
But, that is today's mainstream media.

Tom Maguire has more on this radical friend of Barack and Michelle Obama.

** Obama's Fancied the Chicago Terror Gang-- Partied With Bombers & Former PLO Operative
** Jewish Voters Confront Barack Obama On His Close Association with Former PLO Operative Rashid Khalidi
** LA Times Won't Release Video of Obama Publicly Praising Former PLO Operative & Jew Hater
Media Refuses to Release Video of Obama Toasting & Praising Close Friend Rashid Khalidi--

UPDATE: There's more-- Debbie Schlussel gave Wallsten information.

Would this affect the level of support Barack Obama currently enjoys among Jewish voters?  Supporters of Israel in general?  People who are concerned that Obama has significant ties to terrorists? 

Yes, yes and yes.

So why is Mr. Wallsten steadfastly refusing to make the tape available?  Why isn't the LA Times insisting that he do so?

Why is the paper suppressing this absolutely devastating tape?   Why aren't other supposedly neutral media demanding its release?

Do they even care about what this tape shows?  What it might mean for Israel if Mr. Obama is elected?

How far are they willing to go to elect Barack Obama President? 


Ken Berwitz

One of my biggest problems with John McCain is his disturbing propensity for making inexplicable decisions and then doggedly sticking to them.  One of the most damaging examples is that, months ago, he decided Barack Obama's umbilical ties to jeremiah wright were off-limits for his campaign.

Why?  I dare you to give me even one good reason. 

jeremiah wright is a racist, separatist hater.  Obama proactively selected his church and stayed in it for almost 20 years without so much as a peep of protest about anything he said or did.  This included standing at his religious pulpit and screaming that our country is the "US KKK of America", screaming "God DAMN America", and screaming the suggestion that we brought 9/11 on ourselves.-- all to a raucus, cheering congregation.

Yet Obama called wright his spiritual mentor, named his first book after one of wright's sermons and subjected his two young daughters to wright's racism and hatred their entire lives --- until it was politically damaging to do so, that is.

Well, if Mr. McCain can't find a reason to remind voters of Mr. Obama's association with wright, others can.  Here is an ad from The National Republican Trust PAC (www.GOPtrust.com) which has started airing in a number of battleground states.  See what you think of it (if you have trouble seeing the video, just click here instead):


Asking again:  Why hasn't McCain done this throughout his campaign?

If he had, instead of flashing that winning ear-to-ear grin, Mr. Obama would have spent months trying to defend his indefensible relationship with wright.  What a difference that would have made.

The old saying is "better late than never"  Unfortunately for Mr. McCain, too late is no better than never.  He better hope that the people who understood the importance of wright as an issue far more than he did are not too late.


Ken Berwitz

Well, at least they're honest about their journalistic dishonesty.

Here are excerpts from an article I found at www.yahooo.com, which was written by Jim Vandehei and John F. Harris of www.politico.com.  It sums up a reality I have been talking about for months.  Please pay special attention to the segment I've put in bold print:

Why McCain is getting hosed in the press

Politico political editor Charles Mahtesian was e-mailing the other day with a Republican lobbyist who signed off with a plea that sounded more like a taunt: Keep it balanced.

A reader e-mailed us with the same sentiment in different language. Are you f***ing joking! Your bias has stooped to an all-time low. Wait, it will probably get worse as election day nears. Those asterisks, by the way, are hers, not ours.

And get a load of this one, from someone in Rochester, N.Y., who did not like our analysis of the final presidential debate. You guys are awfully tough on McCain. There may be some legitimacy to the claim of press bias. Mom.

We were all set to dismiss Harris mother as a crank. Same for VandeHeis: a conservative dismayed by what she sees as kid-glove treatment of Barack Obama. Then along came a study funded by the prestigious Pew Research Center, no less suggesting at first blush, at least, that they may be on to something.

The Project for Excellence in Journalisms researchers found that John McCain, over the six weeks since the Republican convention, got four times as many negative stories as positive ones. The study found six out of 10 McCain stories were negative.

Whats more, Obama had more than twice as many positive stories (36 percent) as McCain and just half the percentage of negative (29 percent).

You call that balanced?

OK, lets just get this over with: Yes, in the closing weeks of this election, John McCain and Sarah Palin are getting hosed in the press, and at Politico.

And, yes, based on a combined 35 years in the news business wed take an educated guess nothing so scientific as a Pew study that Obama will win the votes of probably 80 percent or more of journalists covering the 2008 election. Most political journalists we know are centrists instinctually skeptical of ideological zealotry but with at least a mild liberal tilt to their thinking, particularly on social issues.

So what?

...our researcher Alex Burns pulled out his highlighter pen and did his own study of Politico's October stories last week: 110 stories advanced a narrative that was more favorable to Obama than McCain. Sixty-nine did the opposite.

Our daily parlor game (which some readers, alas, seem to take a bit more solemnly than we do) declaring who won the day has awarded the day to Obama by a 2-to-1 margin. Its doubtful even McCain would say hes had more good days than that.

Responsible editors would be foolish not to ask themselves the bias question, especially in the closing days of an election.

But, having asked it, our sincere answer is that of the factors driving coverage of this election and making it less enjoyable for McCain to read his daily clip file than for Obama ideological favoritism ranks virtually nil.

The main reason is that for most journalists, professional obligations trump personal preferences. Most political reporters (investigative journalists tend to have a different psychological makeup) are temperamentally inclined to see multiple sides of a story, and being detached from their own opinions comes relatively easy.

Reporters obsess about personalities and process, about whose staff are jerks or whether they seem like decent folks, about who has a great stump speech or is funnier in person than they come off in public, about whether Michigan is in play or off the table. This is the flip side of the fact of how much we care about the horse race  we dont care that much about our own opinions of which candidate would do more for world peace or tax cuts.

If that causes skeptics to scoff, perhaps they would find it more satisfying to hear that the reason ideological bias matters so little is that other biases matter so much more.

McCains decision to limit media access and align himself with the GOP conservative base was an entirely routine, strategic move for a presidential candidate. But much of the coverage has portrayed this as though it were an unconscionable sellout.

Since then the media often presumes bad faith on McCains part. The best evidence of this has been the intense focus on the negative nature of his ads, when it is clear Obama has been similarly negative in spots he airs on radio and in swing states.

It is not our impression that many reporters are rooting for Obama personally. To the contrary, most colleagues on the trail weve spoken with seem to find him a distant and undefined figure. But he has benefited from the idea that negative attacks that in a normal campaign would be commonplace in this year would carry an out-of-bounds racial subtext. Thats why Obamas long association with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright was basically a nonissue in the general election.

Journalists hair-trigger racial sensitivity may have been misplaced, but it was not driven by an ideological tilt. .

In case there was anyone left who doubted the extreme media bias in this election, that should clear it up nicely.

Any questions?

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