Thursday, 15 January 2009


Ken Berwitz

It's not easy being an angry hard-left "journalist" on an angry, hard-left cable news network that has built a following based on angry, hard-left news.  You have to find enough of it every day to fill the hour you are on.  And sometimes there isn't an hour's worth. 

So what do you do?

In Rachel Maddow's case, you just make some up. 

I've posted blogs which called her on this before, and I'm doing so again today.  Here is a piece from Jack Coleman of, showing how dishonest Maddow was in her phony attack on President Bush two days ago:

Maddow Falsely Claims Bush Whined He 'Inherited This Recession'

Ever compete against ballplayers who cheat?

You know the type -- the runner who tags early on a sacrifice fly. The pitcher who scuffs the ball for better break in his curve. The base-stealer out by a mile who spikes the shortstop.

In the ballgame of political punditry, Rachel Maddow is that kind of player. And apparently it matters little to Maddow that her team, with Obama as its captain, is way ahead in the score.

Most recent example: Maddow twice making a demonstrably false claim about remarks by President Bush in his final press conference on Monday. In previewing a segment during her MSNBC cable show that night, Maddow said this --

Today, still-President Bush insisted the federal response to Hurricane Katrina wasn't slow and that he inherited the recession.

You caught it too, right? "The" recession. OK, so it's one word, no big deal, I told myself upon first hearing Maddow make this claim. Then she did it again several minutes later, and, to mix metaphors, the foul was more flagrant --

Coming up next, you do realize that President Bush inherited this recession and that he's been unfairly accused for the current economic freefall, right? That's what he said today and that's why we're doing a Lame Duck Watch special report tonight.

When it came time to air a clip of Bush's remarks, Maddow avoided repeating her earlier claim, since to do so risked making its falsity immediately apparent. Here's what Bush actually said --

In terms of the economy, look, I inherited a recession, I'm ending on a recession. In the meantime, there were 52 months of uninterrupted job growth.

Contrary to what Maddow wants her viewers to believe, Bush never said he inherited "the recession" or "this recession." That implies Bush blames his predecessor, Bill Clinton, for our current economic woes while also believing we've suffered recession for the entirety of his presidency. Suffice it to say, Bush believes neither, though the First Amendment certainly allows Maddow to claim otherwise, regardless of accuracy.

Adding insult to revisionism, Maddow said this about the initial recession cited by Bush --

The first was a mild economic downturn which started in March '01. And you know, back in 2001, March came after January, which is when Bush took office. So it makes it kind of hard to call that one something he inherited.

What's actually "kind of hard" is what Maddow does -- imply that Bush, who served in neither the presidential administration before his, nor the Congress, had anything to do with creating the "mild economic downturn" that began weeks after he took office.

Sigh ... another missed bag in Maddow's dash to home plate. 

Seeing how Maddow is so fond of citing specifically when recessions start and end, let's look at the one that came before the 2000 recession. According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, it began July 1990 and ended in March 1991, while George H. W. Bush was president -- and six months before Arkansas Gov. Bill Clinton announced his candidacy for president.

You'll recall Clinton's signature issue in that campaign -- "It's the Economy, Stupid" -- even though the recession ended more than 18 months before the '92 election. A more honest slogan would have been, "It's How the Economy is Perceived, Stupid" -- as Maddow would readily attest.

See how easy it is to fill that hour?  Take a statement, change it a bit to alter the meaning, and bingo!  You've got your red meat for the day. 

Who cares if it's honest or not.  Won't the angry hard-left viewers be happy?  That's all that counts, isn't it?

One other thing:  Since Ms. Maddow is highly educated, this probably was an accidental oversight, but she somehow neglected to take into account that the USA's budget starts in the fourth quarter of every year. 

In other words, President Bush's first budget did not start in January of 2001.  The first day of President Bush's first budget was October 1, 2001 -- after the recession, and three weeks after 9/11 decimated our economy. 

If you measure the economic performance of President Bush's adminstration starting when the economy was from his administration, we had a remarkable run of success until the financial meltdown of a few months ago.  And the blame for our meltdown is hardly exclusive to President Bush.

That's a tad different than Ms. Maddow would lead you to believe, isn't it?


Ken Berwitz

From Michael Calderone, writing for

Obama at the Washington Post

Obama arrived at the Washington Post headquarters today, as covered in priceless pool report by the New York Times Helene Cooper.

After three and a half  hours at his transition office, PEOTUS obama took another 6 minute ride through washington, arriving at 157 pm at the nondescript soviet-style building at 15th and L street that houses the washington post.

Around 100 people--Post reporters perhaps?--awaited PEOTUS's arrival, cheering and bobbing their coffee cups.
Pool is holding in a van outside, while Mr obama does his washington post interview, and will exercise enormous restraint by ending report before saying what really thinks about this turn of events.

Is Cooper bitter about the Times still not getting an interview?

There you have it.  Our wonderful "neutral" media in action.

And this ends the blog entry.  What can I tell you that 100 people, most of them probably Washington Post employees (why else would they be there at that moment) cheering for Barack Obama doesn't?


Ken Berwitz

As I write this, the UN is railing and raging about an Israeli bomb that damaged its headquarters in Gaza City, leaving several people wounded (no deaths reported). 

The fact that hamas puts the UN building at risk by attacking Israel from Gaza City, thus forcing Israel to hit these areas, is of no consequence at all  to UN Secretary General ban ki-moron and his merry men.  It's just Jews under atack, so who gives a damn? 

But I wonder if the UN can take time out from its regularly scheduled denunciations of Israel to comment on the fact that - as befits "people" of their stature - hamas is intentionally booby-trapping its own schools, where Gazan mothers send their children. 

Watch the video below and see for yourself:

January 12, 2009...01:30

Video: Hamas Booby Trapped School, 11 Jan 2009, 23:14 IST

Have you heard a word from ban ki-moron and his merry men at the UN about this?  Or about the schools, and mosques being used as ammunition dumps and launching areas for attacks against Israel?

Oh, wait;  I forgot.  It's just Jews.   And Israeli Jews at that.

Who cares about Israel's agricultural miracle in the desert, the irrigation technology it innovated which created the agricultural miracle, the world-class technology sector, the world-class medical facilities and the astounding number of scientific advances which emanate from Israel?  What good does that do for the world?

Remember; in the words of a French diplomat just a few years ago, it's just "a shitty little country".   He was right, of course. 

How much better off we would all be if Israel disappeared and was replaced with the Gazan way of life.  

Heaven on earth, wouldn't you say?

free` here is a good video about some of the things Israelis have created. (01/15/09)


Ken Berwitz

If this isn't the world's greatest wedding dance, I'd love to see what is. 

It comes to us from a New Jersey web site: , and is dated November 13, 2008.  I don't know if that is the wedding date or just the date this video was put on the site.  It doesn't matter.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I do:


UPDATE:  I have been warned that there is a "virus video" going around -- not a wedding video but something relating to the middle east.  Please note that I have McAfee Security and it found nothing wrong with the wedding video in this blog.  But please also note that I never can guarantee the safety of what you put on your computer.  Not from this blog site or anywhere else.  Make sure you are protected.

free` i hope that video isnt a virus, i am getting an error saying i must instal adobe flash, which i already have. i read a warninglast week about a virus going around that acts like that. (01/15/09)

free` Here is the warning I saw last week, I know it is a different video but it acts the same way as this one. An email is going around claiming it has a video of the Israel-Hamas conflict which directs the user to a fake CNN site. The site asks you to download Adobe Flash but this is really a Trojan that steals sensitive information from your computer including financial information. (01/15/09)


Ken Berwitz

Edward Olshaker has written a brilliant piece for, in which he makes the case that bill moyers of PBS and david duke of nazi/White supremacist "fame", have virtually identical positions on Jews and Israel. 

If you think that sounds far-fetched, I suggest you try the following test from Mr. Olshaker's article:

The following remarks are from commentaries on the Israel-Hamas war by Moyers and by the world's best-known Nazi/Klansman, David Duke. Can you tell which is which? (The answers appear at the end.) 
1) All you have to do is the look at the resolution recently passed by the House of Representatives (HRES 34 EH) with only 5 dissenting votes.... It condemns Hamas and the people of Gaza as terrorists but has no mention of the decades long Israeli occupation and strangulation of the West Bank and Gaza.
2) America has officially chosen sides. We supply Israel with money, F-16s, winks and tacit signals.
3) [People killed in Gaza] are the casualties and victims of Israel's decision to silence the rockets from Hamas terrorists by waging war on an entire population.
4) For over 40 years Israel has occupied the West Bank and Gaza, imprisoned and walled off its people.
5) Israel misses no opportunity to humiliate the Palestinians with checkpoints, concrete walls, routine insults, and the onslaught in Gaza.
6) By the blockades of food and medicine, by the checkpoints and by the mass bombing and resulting slaughter, Israel is endeavoring to make life so horrible for the Palestinians, that they simply leave Palestine ...
7) By killing indiscriminately -- the elderly, kids, entire families by destroying schools and hospitals -- Israel did exactly what terrorists do...
8) ...Israel has bombed and terrorized the people of the region for years, and ...will not recognize the government the people of Gaza voted for in free elections.
9) man's terrorism becomes another's resistance to oppression.
10) It is time for the United States and all EU nations to completely cease all economic and military aid to Israel.
11) As if boasting of their might, Israel defense forces even put up video of the explosions on YouTube for all the world to see. A Norwegian doctor there tells CBS, "It's like Dante's Inferno. They are bombing one and a half million people in a cage."
12) Our political elites show neither independence nor courage by challenging the consensus that Israel can do no wrong. Although one recent poll found Democratic voters overwhelmingly oppose the Israeli offensive by a 24-point margin, Democratic Party leaders in Congress nonetheless march in lockstep to the hardliners in Israel and the White House. Rarely does our mainstream media depart from the monotonous monologue of the party line.
13) A tremendous array of media personal attacks and political sabotage both in influence and monetary will descend on the hapless [politician who opposes Israel] The same thing is true in media...
14) But those who raise questions are accused by a prominent reform rabbi of being "morally deficient."
15) Go to the Book of Deuteronomy. When the ancient Israelites entered Canaan their leaders urged violence against its inhabitants. The very Moses who had brought down the commandment "Thou shalt not kill" now proclaimed, "You must destroy completely all the places where the nations have served their gods. You must tear down their altars, smash their pillars, cut down their sacred poles, set fire to the carved images of their gods, and wipe out their name from that place"....So God-soaked violence became genetically coded.

(Answers: Bill Moyers: 2,3,5,7,9,11,12,14,15; David Duke: 1,4,6,8,10,13)

How did you do? If it was difficult to tell the difference, we might have found PBS a replacement for Moyers when he retires.

Unbelievable.  But there it is.

Make of it what you will.


Ken Berwitz

I"m sorry for referring to soon-to-be Vice President Biden as a jackass.  But, based on Paul Mirengoff's piece at today,  I have to.  Because only a jackass would bray out something like this:

"I'm the most experienced vice president since anybody"

January 15, 2009 Posted by Paul at 9:59 AM

Joe Biden has been talking about his favorite topic -- Joe Biden. In particular, he's been attempting to talk his way past the widespread view that he, Joe Biden, marks a return to the days of the irrelevant vice president. Talkin' Joe himself has contributed to that perception by insisting that he will not be like Dick Cheney.

A more astute vice president-elect would have little trouble distinguishing himself from Cheney without casting doubt on his own relevance. The problem with Cheney, from a liberal perspective, should not be that he was the foremost of Bush advisors. Cheney was, after all, the only advisor who faced the national electorate. Rather the problem should be that Cheney's advice (again from a liberal perspective) was bad.

But selecting intelligently among portions of the liberal narrative has never been Biden's strong suit. In any event, Biden surely recognizes that Obama will not allow him to become the foremost presidential advisor. Hence, attacking Cheney's role becomes a convenient excuse for the fact that Biden will be on the sidelines.

To compensate, Biden touts his experience. He claims he will bring more to the job than any of his predecessors, except possibly Lyndon Johnson. Insisting that "I know as much or more than Cheney," Biden concludes, "I'm the most experienced vice president since anybody."

He's also the first vice president "since anybody" pathetic enough to feel compelled to defend himself in this fashion, much less to claim that he knows as much or more as his predecessor. Moreover, Biden's experience -- decades in the Senate -- plainly does not compare to that of Cheney, who had been White House chief of staff, Secretary of Defense, head of a major corportation, and influential member of the House.

Joe Biden has found his role in the Obama administration. It will be the self-referential one of defending his importance. Biden is the best suited vice president to play this role since anybody.

Is there any limit to Joe Biden's ego?  Or to the level of insecurity it would take to make comments like this?

Get ready, folks.  Four years of Jackass Joe.  It just might be enough to make you wish for Dick Cheney again.


Ken Berwitz


Shelled UN Building Used by Hamas

Middle East | Thu, Jan 15, 2009 at 8:39:54 am PST

The media and the United Nations are screaming again today about an IDF attack on a UN compound; Ehud Olmert apparently apologized to the UN immediately after the incident, but now the IDF says Hamas was using the compound as a firing station.

Gunshots and an anti-tank missile were fired at IDF troops near the UN compound that was attacked by the IDF on Thursday, senior defense official told The Jerusalem Post.

Accordng to the officials, the IDF responded by firing artillery shells at the location of the gunmen and that the shells caused damage to the UN installations. At least three people were wounded and the building was set on fire.

The IDFs Gaza Coordination and Liaison Administration coordinated the arrival of five fire trucks to the compound to help put out the flames.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in Israel Thursday to promote a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas, expressed strong protest and outrage at the reported shelling of the UN compound.

Ban also demanded an investigation into the shelling, and said Defense Minister Ehud Barak had told him it was a grave mistake.

Palestinians reported that an IDF tank shell also struck one of the wings of a Gaza hospital midday Thursday. Witnesses said part of the structure was on fire. The army said that the building was also being used by Hamas men who were firing on IDF troops.

UPDATE at 1/15/09 11:54:08 am:

MSNBC reports that the IDF came under fire with anti-tank weapons and machine guns from inside the UN compound.

Israel says it does not target U.N. buildings or personnel. But the Israeli officer said troops opened fire after militants inside the compound shot anti-tank weapons and machine guns. He said the troops used 155 mm artillery shells.

hamas would do that?



Ken Berwitz

For a period of time, one of my sons tried to get me to watch Jon Stewart's "Daily Show" on Comedy Central.  He assured me that I'd love its political humor.  In truth, I did watch a couple of times and found the material clever and well written.  But Stewart's reliably leftward positions and smirky, snarky delivery ruined it for me. 

Now it turns out that, in an effort to go beyond the smirky/snarky boundaries he has already forged, Stewart has decided to take pot shots at Israel during its action in Gaza.  And,because of this, he has become something of a hero to.......hamas.

That's right, hamas.  And, yes, Stewart is (ancestrally, at least) Jewish.

How can this be?  Debbie Schlussel explains, complete with the video that hamas sympathizers seem to like so much:

Jon Stewart In the Tank for HAMAS: "Israelis Forced Palestinians to Live in Their Hallway"

By Debbie Schlussel

This is one of the problems with America's high school and college kids and many others who are already in the job market. They rely on an annoying, sarcastic, ignoramus, left-wing, self-hating Jewish comedian as their primary news source.

This video is posted on a gazillion Islamic, pro-HAMAS (redundant)and far-left websites, urging readers to "thank Jon Stewart." This Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz video is being sent out with gushing praise by the pro-HAMAS/pro-Hezbollah American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. As you'll note, Stewart a/k/a Leibowitz entitles Israel's response to HAMAS terrorism, "Strip Maul." Get it?--He thinks Israel is unfairly "mauling" the Gaza Strip. Idiocy.

As you'll also note, Stewart seizes on a dumb interview New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg gave to CNN. A number of readers sent me that video, but I didn't post it because his analogy is stupid and inaccurate: The Palestinians are not "an emotionally disturbed person in the hallway banging on your door." They are not crazy--they are cold and calculating. And, of course, you wouldn't expect 50 NYPD police to respond to one crazy person in your hallway. This is far different than that. It's a nation of mass murderers trying to burn your home down with you inside.

And, of course, Stewart uses another bullcrap analogy, claiming the Israelis "forced" the Palestinians to live in the hallway. On the contrary, the Palestinians invaded and camped out in the hallway, while the Israelis were kicked into the hallway by all the Arab nations where 1 million Jews lived before they were expelled to Israel and elsewhere.

In any event, if you are a Jew or any other American who (inexplicably) likes the obnoxious Jon Stewart, but--unlike him--actually gets it on Islam's war against the West, I hope you'll stop watching this overpaid emperor with no clothing.

He's the new hero of the net's HAMASniks. He can't be yours.

But one thing's for sure: He epitomes that word that rhymes with "classhole."

Stewart is married and has two children, both under the age of 5.  I wonder what he would do if his next door neighbor tossed rocks at his wife and children every day.  Even if they missed. 

Do you think he'd respond by tossing an equivalent number of rocks back?  Or do you think he'd do everything in his power, however far beyond tossing rocks it was, to force the neighbor to stop?

I know there's a lot of great humor potential in what I just said - there always is humor potential in everything for the Jon Stewarts of the world.  But maybe he ought to think about this for a minute or two, before his next hamas-approved segment.

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