Friday, 20 March 2009


Ken Berwitz

This is what happens when the man behind the curtain is deprived of his teleprompter.

During his unbelievably ill-conceived guest appearance on The Tonight Show, President Obama insulted and demeaned disabled people.

Mr. Obama mentioned that he had bowled and gotten a score of only 129.  Leno jokingly said "Very good, Mr. President".  And Obama said  - verbatim quote - "(it's) like the special olympics or something"

The Obama machine immediately went into super-high gear after this comment was made, and assured us all that it was just an offhanded remark which did not reflect, and he has great respect for, blah blah blah.  About this, two points should be made:

1) I don't give a damn about circumstances.  That comment was a slap in the face to every Special Olympics athlete.  It's a pretty good bet that a 129 game for someone who is physically and/or mentally handicapped requires a damn sight more effort and dedication than a 200 game from someone who is not handicapped.  I can assure you it is far more impressive to me and, I would hope, anyone else with an iota of common sense and understanding;

-It has always been my experience that the comments people make when off guard, tend to be the truest indicators of how they really feel.

So we have the President of the United States laughingly, sarcastically joking that he did something so badly, it was no better than what handicapped people could do.  

What a horrible insult.  What a stupid, ignorant thing to say. 

Note to Barack Obama:  The economy has nosedived and the congress controlled by your party spent yesterday passing an obviously unconstitutional piece of legislation.  Maybe it would be a good idea to reconsider doing gigs on the late night circuit and try concentrating on being President.  God knows, you certainly could use the extra experience.


Ken Berwitz

You can't make this stuff up.  Mr. Transparency has done it again. 

From the LA Times:

The White House behind a fence

We are not making this up:

Barack Obama was elected commander in chief promising to run the most transparent presidential administration in American history.

This achievement and the overall promise of his historic administration caused the National Newspaper Publishers Assn. to name him "Newsmaker of the Year."

The president is to receive the award from the federation of black community newspapers in a White House ceremony this afternoon.

The Obama White House has closed the press award ceremony to the press.

From the president's official schedule: 

"Later in the afternoon, the President and the First Lady will attend a reception with the National Newspaper Publisher Association in the State Dining Room, where they will be presented the Newsmaker of the Year award. This event is closed press."

Maybe they'll let the newspaper people pass the award through the fence.

-- Andrew Malcolm

What is going on here?  How much more bizarre are the actions of this administration going to be?

And when do some of the media who were shut out by Mr. Obama unmesmerize and start talking about it?  Maybe this is the final jolt they'll need.

free` I got this at LGF>>> The National Newspaper Association, despite its innocuous name, is actually an association of far-left publications that includes “Final Call” — the paper published by Louis Farrakhan’s Nation of Islam: NNPA - Article - member papers. And that explains why Obama doesn’t want the mainstream press at this award ceremony. (03/20/09)


Ken Berwitz

Just how bad has it gotten? 

Toby Harnden, the US Editor for London's Daily Telegraph has already put together a "top 10 gaffe" compilation for Barack Obama and Joe Biden.

Here it is.  Either enjoy it or be appalled.  Your call:


Top 10 gaffes by Barack Obama and Joe Biden

Posted By: Toby Harnden at Mar 20, 2009 at 16:35:26 [General]

Perhaps Barack Obama was just trying to make Joe Biden feel better by dropping his clanger on Jay Leno. Whatever the President was thinking, 60 days into their new administration it's time for a post-election Obama-Biden Top 10, in reverse order:

10.  Just after he's been sworn in by him, the newly-minted Vice President Joe Biden gets the name of Justice John Paul Stephens, "one of the great justices" of the Supreme Court, wrong by calling him "Justice Stewart":


9. Barack Obama jokes about Nancy Reagan having sances in the White House. He later called her to apologise after the AP noted that although she had consulted astrologers, "she did not hold conversations with the dead":


8.  Joe Biden forgets the "website number" for the White House internet site designed to show how TARP money is being spent:


7. Barack Obama mixes up the windows and doors at his new home:


6. Joe Biden jokes about Chief Justice John Roberts fluffing the inauguration oath. The president is visibly annoyed with his veep and Biden later apologises:


5. A Marine One double. First, on his maiden Marine One trip Obama breaches protocol and makes life uncomfortable for an enlisted marine by shaking the the serviceman's hand as he's saluting his commander-in-chief:

Then - Gerald Ford, eat your heart out. Barack Obama bangs his head as he boards his helicopter:


4. Joe Biden tells his wife that he had the choice of being either Secretary of State or vice-president - an offer that was news to Obama aides and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when Jill Biden spilled the beans on Oprah:


3. Gordon Brown presents the new President with: a pen holder carved from the timbers of HMS Gannett, a sister ship of HMS Resolute; the commissioning certificate of HMS Resolute; and a seven-volume biography of Winston Churchill. In return, the Prime minister gets 25 DVDS, which don't work in Britain:


2. Joe Biden tells a former Senate colleague who addresses him as "Mr Vice-President" to "give me a f---ing break":


1. The latest one takes the biscuit. Barack Obama jokes about the disabled on the Jay Leno show. Afterwards, he calls the head of the Special Olympics to apologise:


NB I've only included gaffes committed since the presidential election on November 4th. In October, I did this blog on the top dozen campaign gaffes, which features several from Obama and Biden.


Ken Berwitz

From Steve Gilbert and his invaluable

Obamas Holbrooke Was On AIG Board

March 20th, 2009

From a shocked and appalled Associated Press:

Richard Holbrooke, U.S. envoy to Pakistan and Afghanistan, speaks ...

Obama envoy Holbrooke served on AIGs board 

By Richard Lardner, Associated Press Writer Thu Mar 19

WASHINGTON Obama administration special envoy Richard Holbooke was on the American International Group Inc. board of directors in early 2008 when the insurance company locked in the bonuses now stoking national outrage. Holbrooke, a veteran diplomat who is now the administrations point man on Pakistan and Afghanistan, served on the board between 2001 and mid-2008

Obama named Holbrooke as a special envoy on Jan. 22, two days after taking office. Vietor said administration officials were aware of Holbrookes work for AIG during background checks this year when AIG already had benefited from federal intervention.

"Disclosure of past board membership is part of the vetting process," Vietor said

Holbrooke joined AIGs board in February 2001 and resigned in July 2008, two months before the company nearly collapsed. Over more than seven years as a board member, he may have earned as much as $800,000 in cash and company stock, according to AIG financial documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission

Obama this week blasted AIG for what he described as the companys reckless course. He also defended his administrations handling of the companys rescue.

"Nobody here was responsible for supervising AIG and allowing themselves to put the economy at risk by some of the outrageous behavior that they were engaged in," the president said.

Vietor said Holbrooke "has not discussed AIG with the president, Treasury or any other member of the administration."

For much of tenure [sic] on the AIG board, Holbrooke had a role in approving salaries and compensation. From 2001 until mid-2005, he was a member of the boards compensation committee. According to AIG financial statements, the committee sets the salary for the companys chief executive officer and gives advice on how other senior managers are to be compensated.

Holbrooke also led the boards public policy and social responsibility committee from 2005 through July 2008. The committee assesses how political and public policy issues might affect the companys business operations, performance and corporate reputation, according to AIG

According to the SEC filings, AIG paid Holbrooke $267,943 in fees and stock awards in 2007; he was paid $232,865 in 2006. Compensation figures for the six months he was on the board in 2008 are not yet available. By prorating his 2007 compensation, he could have earned about $107,500 in directors fees and stock.

Between 2001 and 2005 the records indicate he earned $200,000 in directors fees. He also received 2,400 shares of AIG stock and options to purchase 10,000 more during that period.

How much more preposterous can this witch hunt get?

Perhaps it should be noted that Larry Craig even has AIG in his name.

How many times have you heard our watchdog media note that White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel was in the pay of Freddie Mac?

We havent either.

Maybe congressperson earl pomeroy can go to the floor of the house today and rail about what a "disgraced professional loser" Mr. Holbrooke -and Mr. Emanuel - both are.

Or, maybe President Obama should demand that Mr. Holbrooke give back the money he made, at least for his last year at AIG, apologize for his involvement in the bonus agreements, and resign.  Ditto for Mr. Emanuel at Freddy Mac.  

Or maybe earl pomeroy and the entire Democratic-controlled congress should apologize for passing a bailout structure that 100% allowed those bonuses, and then trying to cover up their incompetence by passing a bill of attainder (90% tax on the bonuses) that in no way could ever stand up to any constitutional challenge.

And maybe our wonderful "neutral" media can apologize for how little it has reported of Holbrooke's and Emanuel's involvement with these organizations.

Here's a tip:  Don't hang by your thumbs waiting for any of this to happen, especially a mea culpa from the media.  These are Democrats, after all.

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


Ken Berwitz

A major tip of my non-existent hat to Ed Morrissey of  He has uncovered the smoking gun that absolutely, unequivocally proves Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner and the Obama administration in general are lying about when they knew of the AIG bonuses.

It comes to us in the form of a video of the house ways and means committee hearing, in which Democratic  representative Joseph Crowley condemns the bonuses already paid to AIG executives, and then specifically states to Treasury Secretary Geithner that there is another 162 million going to be paid to them.  Then Geithner responds to this information, which he has just been told in so many words.

When was this hearing?  March 3.  Weeks before Geithner and his fellow liars in the Obama administration claim they knew a thing about the bonuses.

Here is Ed's blog:

Video: Congress, Geithner knew about bonuses on March 3rd

posted at 11:30 am on March 20, 2009 by Ed Morrissey
Send to a Friend | Share on Facebook | printer-friendly

Tim Geithner and Congress claim that they got blindsided by the AIG bonuses late last week, before anyone had a chance to stop AIG from paying them. However, C-SPANs video library tells a very different story. Watch the clip from a March 3rd hearing of the House Ways and Means Committee in which Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-NY) specifically mentions the upcoming payouts of over $162 million in bonuses to AIG execs, the very same number that inflamed Washington DC this week:

After accusing the previous administration of a lack of oversight, Crowley says this, emphasis mine:

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Welcome to the committee, Mr. Geithner, and thank you for your responses so far. It never ceases to amaze me the level of apparent amnesia some of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle have had about how we got to this problem in the first place, and I thank you for answering Mr. Hellers question in particular. By the line of questioning, youre almost led to believe that because of a last month and a few days of a presidency we had the problem we have today, and thank you for setting the record straight. This didnt happen overnight. This took eight years in the making of stagnant, at best, growth.

But yesterday, Mr. Secretary, the Treasury and the Federal Reserve announced a new fourth plan to rescue troubled financial services giant AIG. I do agree that AIGs sustainability is the lynchpin for some of our recovery efforts, and its important for the federal government to work to keep it afloat. However, I must demand that AIG increase the accountability and transparency, something that was not done during the previous administration.

For example, just last month, AIG paid 343 employees of AIG FP their Financial Products division that created the financial hole that AIG is in, and in turn a multibillion-dollar bill for American taxpayers $56 million in bonuses and are slated to pay an additional $162 million in bonuses to 393 participants in the coming weeks. And theres more. Further bonus payments totaling approximately 230 million (dollars) are due to 407 participants at AIGs Financial Products division in March 2010. This makes no sense to my constituency.

In other words, everyone knew about these bonuses. Congress even knew enough about it to question Geithner on it, with remarkable accuracy on the total amount due to be paid out, on March 3rd nine days before Geithner initially claimed to know about it.

This whole episode has been a farce perpetrated by Congress and the administration to stoke artificial outrage over contractual compensation obligations. Its a freak show put on by Democrats. Theyre giving us populist circuses in order to build a mob mentality but for what purpose?

This proves conclusively and indisputably that Geithner and everyone else knew about the bonuses well over a week earlier than they claimed -- and probably long before.  Did you hear Crowley referring to it as new information that he just found out that day?  Me neither.



I want Geithner out now. I want a resignation and an apology from him.  And I want an apology from every member of Obama's staff who lied right along with him - which, not incidentally, includes Mr. Obama himself.

Will the mainstream media make the same demand?  Have they finally had enough of the lies and the fraud?  Or are they still so far in the tank for Saint Barack that they'll cover for him yet again?


Ken Berwitz

Remember those 25 DVD's that the Obamas gave to UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown, as if that were an appropriate gift from a President to another head of state?  You might or might not, considering how much of our wonderful "neutral" mainstream media declined to report it.

Would this amazingly amateurish blunder have been more extensively reported it if the President were Bush instead of Obama?  You tell me.

Well, now it turns out that this was even worse than it originally appeared.  DVD's in the US have a different format than what is used in the UK.  So none of the 25 can be played unless Prime Minister Brown imports a US DVD player.

Would this additional amazingly amateurish blunder have been more extensively reported if the President were Bush instead of Obama?  You tell me again.

Simply stated:

-If you want to make a President look like an idiot it's easy to do - just have a field day reporting every mistake and be sure to word your report in a way that suggests the President has acted idiotically.

-But if you don't want to make a President look like an idiot, that's easy too.  Just underreport every mistake or don't report it at all.

Gee, I guess the difference is media bias.


Ken Berwitz

Let's see President Barak blame this one on Bush.

Here are excerpts from the Associated Press article:

$1 trillion deficits seen for next 10 years

WASHINGTON President Barack Obama's budget would generate deficits averaging almost $1 trillion a year over the next decade, according to the latest congressional estimates, significantly worse than predicted by the White House just last month.

The Congressional Budget Office figures, obtained by The Associated Press Friday, predict Obama's budget will produce $9.3 trillion worth of red ink over 2010-2019. That's $2.3 trillion worse than the White House predicted in its budget.

Worst of all, CBO says the deficit under Obama's policies would never go below 4 percent of the size of the economy, figures that economists agree are unsustainable. By the end of the decade, the deficit would exceed 5 percent of gross domestic product, a dangerously high level.

The latest figures, even worse than expected by top Democrats, throw a major monkey wrench into efforts to enact Obama's budget, which promises universal health care for all and higher spending for domestic programs like education and research into renewable energy.

The dismal deficit figures, if they prove to be accurate, inevitably raise the prospect that Obama and his allies controlling Congress would have to consider raising taxes after the recession ends or paring back his agenda.

This is what happens when we elect a man with no experience that qualifies him for the presidency, but a ton of experience spending other people's money that he never had to earn.  

Other than the existence of a printing press, Mr. Obama doesn't appear cognizant of any correlation between money and what creates it.  Money just sort of comes from...somewhere.  And he can just keep spending it, even if he has no idea of where it is coming from.

There is absolutely no doubt that Barack Obama will blame this on President Bush.  If you're mesmerized, and/or naive, and/or stupid enough, you may even believe him. 

Did you believe him last month, when he was telling you he'd halve the deficit in just a few years?

Maybe he'll try telling you that Bush snuck back into Washington and screwed things up this month to cause the deficits now being reported.  I bet some people would believe that too.



Ken Berwitz

From ABC local new, New York City:

A federal appeals court has ruled that disgraced financier Bernard Madoff must remain in prison until his sentencing.

The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan issued its ruling Friday.

The court said Judge Denny Chin was correct in his ruling. The federal judge decided the 70-year-old Madoff should remain behind bars before he is sentenced for defrauding thousands of investors of billions of dollars.

Madoff will be sentenced in June. He faces up to 150 years in prison.

What an outrage!  Why can't they let poor bernie live in his 7 million dollar penthouse until sentencing? 

Hey, with the housing values dropping the way they have, I bet it's only worth about 6 million now.  For god sake, it's practically a slum.

And what possible reason would the court have to think he's a flight risk?  Just because he's a hugely rich man who can buy just about anything for anyone, and he's facing a 150 year jail sentence, and if an escape attempt is unsuccessful all they can do is put him in jail, which is what they're going to do anyway?

That's ridiculous.  Why, if he just sticks around and goes to jail, with time off for good behavior he could be out in maybe half that time.  He'd be only 145 years old. 

Are you getting the impression that I'm pleased with this ruling?  Somehow I have the feeling we're in agreement.

Gumstick He'd do 85%, since it is a fed charge, so 125 years. If he claims a substance dependency (and he would have to BEFORE his pre-sentencing report is completed), he could get up to another year off. So, 124. If he keeps in shape, eats right, and doesn't piss off the guys running the yard (and he won't he'll send them a lot of $$$ for protection), he should get out, oh, 114 years after he dies :) (03/20/09)


Ken Berwitz

Several people have brought the following video to my attention.  It is congressperson Thad McCotter (R-MI) making a two minute statement about the AIG bonuses and congressional reaction to them.  Every word is true, and Mr. McCotter could not be more on target.  

If you have difficulty clicking on it below, just click here instead.




Ken Berwitz

This comes from the Broward/Palm Beach New Times.  Make of it what you will.......

Source: Body of Natalee Holloway Found in Aruba

Natalee Holloway.jpg
Natalee Holloway
Details remain vague, but The Juice has just learned that authorities believe they have found the body of Natalee Holloway, the 18-year-old from Clinton, Miss., who vanished in the Caribbean island in May 2005.

A Miami-based flight attendant for American Airlines tells The Juice that a cadaver dog was aboard a Miami-to-Aruba  flight. The officer with the dog was going to search for the remains of Holloway.

"They think they've found where Natalee Holloway's remains are, and they're taking the dog down to confirm that," said the flight attendant, who lives in Fort Lauderdale. "They're not telling anybody because Aruba is trying to keep this quiet."

A tabloid media sensation, Holloway's case had lately gone cold. Aruba investigators have been criticized for failing to find a body or a suspect in the teenager's disappearance.

More details to come as they become available.


Ken Berwitz

You have to read this to believe it.

From the AP, via the Washington Times:

Illegals tap Maryland for legal licenses

Delegate seeks to ban practice

Friday, March 20, 2009

ANNAPOLIS | In an online Spanish language chat room, people from all along the East Coast seek tips on how to get a driver's license in Maryland, though they don't live in Maryland.

Businesses run classified ads in Spanish-language publications in the District, Virginia and Maryland urging "undocumented Hispanic friends" to take advantage of the opportunity to get a Maryland ID without having to prove they are in the country legally.

In one case, Maryland motor vehicle officials say, 68 different people applying for licenses and IDs gave the same address for an 800-square-foot home in Baltimore.

Delegate Ronald A. George, Anne Arundel Republican, said the license policy is cheapening the value of a state ID.

"Our residents deserve licenses that are on an even playing field with other states," said Mr. George, who has failed twice in getting the General Assembly to require the state to ensure license applicants are in the U.S. legally.

He is trying again this year, with a House bill, but this time with support from Gov. Martin O'Malley and other Democrats.

Maryland is one of just four states - the only one east of the Mississippi - where people don't have to prove they are legal U.S. residents to get driver's licenses.

Advocates for keeping such a policy in Maryland - and in Hawaii, New Mexico and Washington - argue that allowing illegal immigrants to get state-issued identification gives police broader databases when investigating crimes and increases the rate of auto-insurance coverage.

"It makes the streets safer for all of us," said Delegate Jolene Ivey, Prince George's Democrat, who supports continued access to Maryland licenses for illegal residents.

The problem, say officials with Maryland's Motor Vehicle Administration, is that they've been overwhelmed with requests for identification appointments as other states have tightened requirements.

A Department of Legislative Services analysis assumed the state issued about 6,700 licenses and ID cards to illegal immigrants in 2008, but cautioned that exact statistics are tough to nail down. From July 2007 to June 2008, the MVA issued about 508,000 new licenses and 170,000 ID cards.

The agency's chief, John Kuo, said the demand has outpaced the state's foreign-born population growth. A toll-free number to book license appointments for noncitizens received 1 million attempted calls from all over the country in its first day of operation last year. The state, which only has 5.6 million residents, now limits hot-line access to people calling from Maryland.

Kim Propeack, a spokeswoman for the immigrant advocacy organization CASA, says the group has found that one of the cheaper firms charges a $150 fee to make robocalls to license hot lines just to get license appointments.

Why would anyone in his right mind accept a Maryland (or Hawaii, or New Mexico or Washington) driver's license as acceptable ID?  They ADMIT they don't know who is getting them.

And the reasoning?  It gives them "broader databases" which "makes the streets safer for all of us".

Tell that to Chandra Levy's parents, why don't you.

Here's an alternative idea.  Make the data base less broad by deporting people who are in the country illegally.  And severely fine the businesses who are proactively advertising to them and helping them get driver's licenses they have no right to.

This is insanity.


Ken Berwitz

From today's New York Times:

The people have said no, Representative Earl Pomeroy, Democrat of North Dakota, shouted on the House floor. In fact, they said hell no, and give us our money back.

Have the recipients of these checks no shame at all? Pomeroy continued. Summing up his personal view of the so-far anonymous AIG executives, he said: You are disgraced professional losers. And by the way, give us our money back.

For the record, earl pomeroy - the man who viciously attacked every AIG employee receiving a bonus as if there were no difference in performance or value between any of them -  voted in favor of the bailout that ALLOWED those bonuses. 

earl pomeroy also received thousands of dollars in contributions from AIG for his 2008 election campaign.

And he's calling them disgraced professional losers? 

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