Wednesday, 18 March 2009


Ken Berwitz

From NBC-Miami, we get this incredible story (the bold print is mine):

Bestiality Soon to Be Outlawed in Florida Lawmakers Consider Felony Charges For Sex With Animals


Updated 2:00 PM EDT, Wed, Mar 18, 2009

Getty Images

Florida lawmakers are trying to make it harder to violate goats and any other defenseless creature.

It looks like man and dog are going to legally remain best friends if the state of Florida has its say.

The State's Senate agriculture committee, in a long overdue measure, has voted unanimously to charge anyone who has sex with animals with a third-degree felony.

Amazingly, Florida is one of 16 states that still permits bestiality, despite the obvious harm caused to the victim - in most cases the family pet or farm animal.

"There's a tremendous correlation between sexually deviant behavior and crimes against children and crimes against animals," said Sen. Nan Rich, a Sunrise Democrat, told the Miami Herald. "This is long overdue. These are heinous crimes. And people belong in jail."

Rich predicted the bill would pass easily this year.

Can it be possible that 16 states allow humans to copulate with animals?  That's appalling.

Senator Rich seems to think that there is a high correlation between bestiality and child molestation.  I did a quick google search and I'm having trouble confirming her claim.  But regardless of whether the correlation exists, it seems to me that basic civilized behavior inherently precludes this truly disgusting activity. 

At the very least, bestiality abuses the animals it is performed upon.  I don't know how anyone could disagree.

Let's hope Florida passes this law ASAP, and the other 15 states quickly follow suit.


Ken Berwitz

It was late in coming, but either President Obama or someone in his administration has finally decided to use that lumpy thing above the brainstem when considering whether to charge military personnel for treatment of their service-related injuries.


Pelosi: Obama Scraps Idea of Billing Veterans Private Insurance for Treating Service-Related Injuries
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
By Fred Lucas and Michael Chapman

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) (AP Photo)
( House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced on Wednesday afternoon that President Barack Obama is shelving a controversial proposal that would have forced the private health insurance of veterans to pay for their war- and service-related injuries.

President Obama listened to the genuine concerns expressed by the veteran service organizations regarding the option of billing service-connected injuries to veterans insurance companies, said Pelosi. Based on the respect President Obama has for veterans and the principle concerns of our veteran leaders, the president made the decision that combat wounds should not be billed through their insurance policies.
Pelosi made her comments at a meeting with veterans service organizations at the Capitol in Washington, D.C. After her announcement, the group gave her a standing ovation.
The proposal, which was discussed in recent hearings of the Veterans Affairs committees in the House and Senate and in the House Budget Committee, would have shifted more of the cost for service-related injuries from the government--through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)--to the private, third-party insurance plans held by many veterans. 
Currently, the VA covers the full cost of medical ailments related to military service and bills third-party insurers only for non-service related ailments.

For example, if an injured veteran is treated for the flu, the veterans personal insurance is billed. If the injured veteran is treated for a service-related injury and requires hearing aids or prosthetics, for example, the VA covers the cost. The proposal Obama has decided to abandon would have shifted the expense of treating service-related  injuries and illnesses from the VA to private insurance companies.
Last week, Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki confirmed to the House and Senate committees on veterans affairs that the idea to bill veterans private individual insurance was being considered by the administration but was not yet a formal proposal.
It is a consideration. It is not in the budget, but it is a consideration, and I'll be sure that your concerns are delivered, Shinseki told the House Veterans Affairs Committee. And again, were talking--in health care--the two aspects of this are delivery of health care and the financing of it. This is about the financing. I want to assure you that there should be no concern about the delivery.
But the idea had already generated strong opposition from veterans groups and members of Congress, and the veterans service organizations were making their concerns known to the White House.
Also last week, Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), a member of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, said, I believe that veterans with service-connected injuries have already paid by putting their lives on the line for our safety. When our troops are injured while serving this country, we should take care of those injuries completely. We shouldnt nickel and dime them with their care.

House Veterans Affairs Committee Rep. Michael Michaud (D-Me.) told Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki during the Mar. 10 hearing, If that [third-party payment proposal] is in the budget, I will not be supporting the budget. It is unconscionable and is an insult to our veterans who've been hurt overseas. So hopefully, you will give that message to OMB as it relates to third-party collections for disabled veterans, which is just unbelievable that anyone would ever think of doing that in this budget.

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), the ranking member of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, also expressed opposition. If this proposal reaches the Senate, I will strongly oppose it, Burr told in a statement Monday.

The VA was created for the purpose of caring for those who have fought and sacrificed for our country, and the care for injuries sustained while serving is our responsibility.
On Wednesday, before Pelosi announced that Obama was scrapping the proposal, a couple members of Congress spoke with about the issue.

"I'm for keeping the veterans organization the way it is right now," said Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa). "I look at the VA this way -- 80 years ago the VA system was set up so that people who served to defend our freedom wouldn't have to be on charity. I think the system is still very good."

In reference to U.S. veterans, Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.) said, " I think they've done enough. I certainly don't want them to have to pay out of their own pockets."

Given the dearth of bipartisanship in Washington these days, it's nice to see a bit of it once in a while.  And the imbecilic, offensive idea of telling our military personnel that treatment for service-related problems is their responsibility, is as good a place for it as you'll find.

Commendations to the congresspeople on both sides of the aisle for telling the Obama administration where to go on this issue.

Now:  how in the world did former 4-star general Eric Shinseki allow himself to be its facilitator?

Despite his clashes with Bush and Rumsfeld over Iraq policy, Eric Shinseki was a highly decorated, highly accomplished, very honorable military officer.  What was he thinking here?  How could he have been a party to this?  How could he not have advised the President away from it?  What happened to him?


Ken Berwitz

Try to imagine what media would have said if this were President Bush.

From Sky News:

Obama In St Patrick's Day Teleprompt Blunder

12:26pm UK, Wednesday March 18, 2009

A teleprompt blunder has led to Barack Obama thanking himself in a speech at the White House in a St Patrick's Day celebration.

Irish Prime Minister Brian Cowen was just a few paragraphs into an address in Washington when he realised it all sounded a bit too familiar.

It was. He was repeating the speech President Barack Obama had just read from the same teleprompter.

Mr Cowen stopped, turned to the president and said: "That's your speech."

A laughing Mr Obama returned to the podium to take over but it seems the script had finally been switched and the US president ended up thanking himself for inviting everyone to the party.

Mr Obama is an accomplished orator but is becoming known in America as the "teleprompt president" over his reliance on the machine when he gives a speech.

But it wasn't President Bush.  It was President Obama.  So try and find it in the mainstream media.

Lucky the teleprompter didn't tell him to remove his clothes and do the hully-gully too.........


Ken Berwitz

Natasha Richardson is dead at the age of 45.  From

Natasha Richardson has succumbed to her injuries.

The Tony Award winner was pronounced dead today after being removed from life support at a New York hospital. She was 45.

A small private funeral is planned, according to friends who spoke earlier to E! News on behalf of the bereaved family.

The wife of Liam Neeson and daughter of Oscar winners Vanessa Redgrave and Tony Richardson was hospitalized Monday in Montreal after a fall during a ski lesson. Richardson, accompanied by Neeson, was flown Tuesday to New York and admitted to Manhattan's Lenox Hill Hospital, where she was pronounced brain dead.

"Liam Neeson, his sons, and the entire family are shocked and devastated by the tragic death of their beloved Natasha," Neeson's rep, Alan Nierob, said in a statement. "They are profoundly grateful for the support, love and prayers of everyone, and ask for privacy during this very difficult time."

What a terrible tragedy for Ms. Richardson - and for her husband, the great actor Liam Neeson and their two sons, aged 12 and 13.

May she rest in peace.


Ken Berwitz

From Agence France-Presse:

Top UN official says US demonizing Iran leader

UNITED NATIONS (AFP) UN General Assembly president Miguel d'Escoto Brockmann, a harsh critic of US foreign policy under president George W. Bush, accused Washington on Tuesday of demonizing Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

"I don't think anyone can doubt that in our part of the world, Ahmadinejad has been demonized," the former Nicaraguan foreign minister said as he briefed reporters on his recent foreign tour, including a stop in Iran where he attended a regional economic summit.

"The United States has been in the business of the demonization of people for ever and the canonization of the worst of dictators," he added, referring to the Philippines' Ferdinand Marcos, Nicaragua's Anastasio Somoza and Chile's Augusto Pinochet.

The hardline Ahmadinejad has come under fire in the West over his country's refusal to scale back its nuclear ambitions and for suggesting that Israel should be wiped off the map.

But d'Escoto, a US-born former priest, said he was struck during his visit to Tehran earlier this month by the "great respect" Iran enjoys from its neighbors for sheltering 3.5 million Afghan refugees.

D'Escoto, who served as foreign minister under Nicaragua's leftist Sandinista government from 1979 to 1990, has often been harshly critical of US and Israeli policies -- particularly the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 -- since he took over as General Assembly president seven months ago.

He has consequently been accused by US and Israeli diplomats here of being a divisive figure.

"As president of the General Assembly, his responsibility is to unite and lead rather than living out his personal agenda," said one diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity.

D'Escoto visited Bahrain, China, Finland, Iran, Syria and Switzerland during a recent three-week tour aimed at promoting the holding of an international conference on the global financial crisis from June 1 to 4.

ahmadinejad, who runs a shari'a law hellhole, informs the world, in so many words, of his plans to vaporize another country (also a member of the UN, let's not forget).

But if we speak against him, we're demonizing him.  That is what we are told by a USA-hating lunatic leftist -- who just happens to be the UN General Assembly President.

I've said it before and I'll say it again.  The UN is dead.  Morally, spiritually and ethically dead. 

You want proof?  There's a ton of it.  But, for the moment, how about the fact that the UN allows this imbecile to be in a position of power?

I rest my case.



Ken Berwitz

How convenient.

The Obama administration is now claiming that the first it heard of AIG's bonuses - the ones it is in full outrage mode over - was March 5.  That juu-u-u-u-uust happens to be three days after AIG got the last bailout money.

See, everyone?  We didn't do anything wrong, it was those miserable bastards at AIG who fooled us.  We're as innocent as newborn babes and as outraged as you are. 

Here is the Obama administration's, explanation, via an excerpt from Jake Tapper's article for ABC News:

Obama Administration: We Didn't Find Out About AIG Bonuses Until This Month

March 17, 2009 7:18 PM

Sources in the Obama administration Tuesday said that despite previous media reports administration officials did not know until a couple weeks ago that the officials of the controversial AIG Financial Product Division were set to receive $165 million in bonuses on March 13.

It wasn't until Thursday, March 5, 2009, administration sources told ABC News, that officials of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York informed officials of the Treasury Department of the full extent of the $165 million in bonuses pending for the controversial Financial Products Subsidiary.

This was three days after the Obama administration had already announced a new commitment of an additional $30 billion for AIG.

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner was alerted last Tuesday, March 10; he phoned AIG CEO Edward Liddy on Wednesday evening, March 11, to protest the bonuses, sources told ABC News.

On Thursday, March 12, Secretary Geithner informed a senior White House official about the controversy, aides passed the information on to President Obama later in the day.

How the Obama administration was caught flat-footed by this controversy dates back to last Fall, when the New York Federal Reserve Bank -- then run by Geithner -- stepped in to give AIG a high-interest loan for $85 billion to help prevent the company from going under -- which Lehman Brothers was doing at the time. As part of the deal, AIG CEO Robert Willumstad was replaced by the new CEO, Liddy.

Isn't that special? 

So tell me:  When the initial bailout money was issued - and approved by the DEMOCRATIC CONGRESS (both houses!) - did they do a thing about AIG's bonus structure?  It's not like it wasn't in place at the time.

Did Senate banking chair Chris Dudd or House financial chair Barney Fudd raise the issue? 

Well, actually, the answer is that Dudd acted.  Unfortunately, his action was to insert language that specifically protected these bonuses.  Oopsy daisy....

(Oh, by the way - pure coincidence of course - the US Senator who got the most money in campaign contributions from AIG was Chris Dudd.  And the second most money?  It went to Barack Obama.) 

And when Geithner was giving still more bailout money to AIG, did he bother to ask where and how it would be spent?  Well, no...

Huh?  Wait a minute.  That can't be, can it?  Is it possible that a Democratic congress passed the bailout money and an entirely Democratic administration gave subsequent bailout money, without asking a thing about whether some of the money would be used for bonuses --- in an industry where it is entirely commonplace for bonuses to be given?

Are there Democrats in congress or the white house who are acquainted at all with the fact that companies give bonuses?  I guess not, since if they knew such bonuses existed they surely would have asked, wouldn't they?

Folks, this isn't just a pile of BS.  This is a lifetime supply.

What you are seeing is a Democratic administration effing up so royally it's almost impossible to describe the extent of the eff-up -- then feigning outrage to try and divert us from noticing. 

And, predictably, they are being abetted in this consummate fraud, at least so far, by the usual complicitors among our wonderful "neutral" media. 

Inspector Renault would have been green with envy.

"I'm shocked - SHOCKED - to find that insurance companies give bonuses. I demand that they be returned.  I would never associate with a company that would dare to..."  "Here are your campaign contributions, sir"  "Thank you.  As I was saying...."


Ken Berwitz

No one is going to accuse CBS TV News of Obamaphobia, that I can assure you.

So it is more than a little telling that CBS is the latest news venue to go public with the fact that the President Obama and his administration are lying to our faces when they claim ignorance about the AIG bonuses.

Here is the first part of CBS's article (which I urge you to click on and read in its entirety):

AIG Bonuses Have Been Known About For Months

Failed Insurance Giant Filed Plans For Payouts In Nov.; White House Scrambles To Explain Actions


Liars.  Absolute liars.

The Democratic congress knew full well about AIG's bonuses when it voted to give them the initial bailout money. 

The Obama administration has known about AIG's bonuses every day of its existence.

And, if CBS is any indication, this lie isn't going to be buried.


Barack Obama has been lying to us ongoingly about a whole bunch of things.  Maybe now a few of the mesmerized ones will wake up long enough to notice.

free` Is it any wonder, if congress cant be bothered with reading what they are voting on and the president cant be bothered with reading what he is signing maybe they didn't bother to read about the bonuses either. Or maybe they did and saw it as an opportunity to use some more tactics from Alinsky and Marx. The way Obama and the dems are trying to focus the public's anger at business helps further the goals of nationalization and keep the heat off of themselves. very reminiscent of Hugo Chavez. (03/18/09)


Ken Berwitz

While Barack Obama, and his tax-cheating stooge secretary of the treasury Timothy Geithner, and his senate banking and house finance stooges, Chris Dudd and Barney Fudd, all try to con you into thinking they have nothing to do with the AIG executive retention bonuses.....

Ed Morrissey of provides something none of this sorry bunch seem to have any familarity with.  Honesty. 

The facts are from Ed.  The bold print is mine:

Hey, guess who else has an executive retention bonus plan?

posted at 11:48 am on March 18, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

While everyone assails AIG for using less than 0.1% of the taxpayer-bailout money it received to meet contractual obligations in compensation through retention bonuses, another recipient of government largesse has its own bonus program in operation.  According to their annual report, Freddie Mac has a generous retention bonus plan built into its operation for the next year.  Eligibility includes all of the senior and executive VPs.  It comes in four payouts, and only the last has any connection to company performance.

Exhibit 10-4 on page 414-5 lays out the program:

Objective To retain as many people as possible for 18 months (through March, 2010) in order to:

  • Maintain maximum operational stability
  • Allow time to evaluate the fundamental business model
  • Fulfill Freddie Macs goal of re-establishing stability and liquidity to the mortgage market

Retention Period Retention Period runs from September 2008 through March 2010.

General Eligibility All Senior Vice Presidents and Executive Vice Presidents who are employees of Freddie Mac on or after September 1, 2008 are eligible to participate in the program.

Freddie Mac pays the bonus on a quarterly basis for simply sticking around, at least until the final quarter:

Payout Timing The aggregate retention award for each individual will be paid in the regular payroll cycle occurring immediately after the following dates

  • 1     20%     December 15, 2008
  • 2     20%     August 1, 2009
  • 3     25%     December 15, 2009
  • 4     35%     March 15, 2010

Payment Numbers 1, 2, and 3 will be based solely in the individuals continued employment with Freddie Mac the through the indicated payment dates.

Performance Requirements Payment Number 4 will be conditioned upon achievement of specific performance objective(s) that will be determined during the upcoming businessplanning process.

That sounds a lot like the AIG retention bonus plan, although Freddie Mac does have a disclaimer stating that they can modify or end the program at their discretion.  Since Freddie Mac and her sister Fannie Mae got over $200 billion in a pre-TARP bailout, more than the private AIG got (at least in the aggregate), one might ask why Freddie Mac built in retention bonuses in this November filing two months after the taxpayer bailout.

If AIGs retention bonuses are a problem, why arent Freddie Macs?

Point of order:  As Morrissey points out, this filing was made in November of last year - two months AFTER the Freddy Mac meltdown. 

What were those bonus schedules doing in there under any circumstances?  Aren't these the same executives that brought Freddy Mac down?  Aren't they (substitute any argument being made about AIG here, they all fit perfectly).

What frauds they are. 

What liars they are.  

What cynical politicians they are, counting on your ignorance (with the copious help of the usually reliable mainstream media) to pull it off.

Remember, the bonuses being paid to AIG people were contracted before the company's collapse.  The bonuses being paid to Freddy Mac executives were planted in a new filing, two months after the company's collapse.

If you're outraged about AIG bonuses, how exactly should you feel about the ones at Freddy Mac?  And what do you want done to the politicians who went along with those bonuses and, as of right now, haven't said a bad word about them?


Ken Berwitz


WASHINGTON (CNN) Senate Banking committee Chairman Christopher Dodd told CNNs Dana Bash and Wolf Blitzer Wednesday that he was responsible for adding the bonus loophole into the stimulus package that permitted AIG and other companies that received bailout funds to pay bonuses.

Watch: I'm responsible for bonus loophole, Dodd says

On Tuesday, Dodd denied to CNN that he had anything to do with the adding of that provision.

The liar got caught in his lie; caught so badly that he had to unlie the next day, because even usually reliable media venues refused to cover for hiim.

Now, when does Dudd apologize for his involvement in Enron?  And in the sub-prime mortgage disaster?  And his ridiculously low mortgages from Countrywide that look so much like a payoff?

As you can see, Dudd has a lot more to apologize for.   And media have a lot more to nail him on. 

The sooner the better.


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