Friday, 12 June 2009


Ken Berwitz

I wish I had said it as well as Michelle Malkin does.  But I didn't, so here is her "letter to david letterman":

Dear David Letterman

By Michelle Malkin

Will you teach your son to talk about women and girls the way you talk about Sarah Palin and her daughters?

You called the married 45-year-old mother, grandmother and Alaska governor a "slutty flight attendant" on your national TV talk show because she happens to be a tall, beautiful and dynamic public figure who doesn't look, walk or talk the way you think she should.

You joked on national television about Palin's teenage daughter "getting knocked up" by professional baseball player Alex Rodriguez or solicited by the prostitute-addicted former New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer because it's acceptable in your social and professional circles to sneer at the children of politicians you despise.

You admitted that your attacks on Palin's family were in "poor taste," but cackled while acknowledging your sophomoric judgment.

You expressed moral indignation at being misconstrued, yet you purposely omitted the name of the daughter you were mocking.

Fourteen-year-old Willow Palin was the daughter who accompanied Gov. Palin on her trip this week, not 18-year-old Bristol Palin, whom you now claim was the target of your feckless smear -- a smear you still insist is perfectly defensible. Look at yourself, Dave. Look at how lame your excuse-making was on your Wednesday night show:

"These are not jokes made about her 14-year-old daughter. I would never, never make jokes about raping or having sex of any description with a 14-year-old girl. I mean, look at my record. It has never happened. I don't think it's funny. I would never think it was funny. I wouldn't put it in a joke..."

Tell us, great comic genius, how tacking on four years to the target daughter makes it funny? We unenlightened dim bulbs who live outside of Manhattan's boundaries don't get the joke.

Will you be able to explain it to your son?

Face it: David Letterman, late-night entertainer turned partisan hack and hit man, has a deranged obsession with Palin and her family that has crossed into rank bigotry and hatred. If the CBS network cares about basic standards of decency on public airwaves and if it cares at all about bolstering its shrinking audience, the network honchos will get Letterman a therapist pronto.

Over the past year, Letterman has displayed his sexist, elitist stripes in jibe after jibe aimed at Palin. Taken cumulatively, Letterman's mockery is about much more than expressing contempt for the popular GOP governor. It's a handy device to deride a broad class of working-class and middle-class women he holds in contempt:

"You know, she reminds me, she looks like the flight attendant who won't give you a second can of Pepsi. No, you've had enough. We're landing. Looks like the waitress at the coffee shop who draws a little smiley face on your check. Have a nice day."

"She looks like the dip sample lady at Safeway. She looks like the nurse who weighs you and then makes you sit alone in your underwear for 20 minutes. She looks like the Olive Garden hostess who says, 'I'm sorry, your table isn't ready yet.' She looks like the infomercial lady who says she made $64,000 a month flipping condos."

"She looks like the lady at the bakery who yells out '44! 45!' She looks like a real estate agent whose picture you see on the bus stop bench. That's who she looks like. She looks like the lady who has a chain of cupcake stores."

In November 2008, Letterman told tanking CBS News anchor Katie Couric that he was "aroused" by Palin. In March 2009, Letterman attacked Bristol and snickered about her being "knocked up" again.

Letterman reminds me of the lecher at the school bus stop. Or the aging creep lurking in the dirty magazine section at the 7-Eleven.

Attention, CBS: Get him help now.

Thank you, Michelle.  That is about as good an answer as it can be.


Ken Berwitz's Ben Smith (writing at The New Republic's web site), has a short, very well thought out position on james von brunn, the human colostomy bag who shot up the holocaust museum, killing one of its guards:

"...he's so far out to the right that he seems to despise most of what we consider the right: The Washington, D.C. Fox News Affiliate reports that his notebooks included "a Fox News location" among potential targets. That could also be coherent with an extreme Buchananite, but it's far enough out that it seems silly to suggest he's really an "extreme" version of, say, a Fox News Republican, rather than the product of an ideology with different roots.

I especially agree with the comparison to buchanan - who I find objectionable and then some.  Like von brunn, buchanan has several extreme right views, but also is way to the left on other issues (e.g. he's an isolationist and his positions on tariffs with other countries is loved to death by unions).

I could live very nicely without either of those two.


Ken Berwitz

For years and years we have heard that Limbaugh did just that.  And now this accusation is again in the news as some kind of answer to david letterman's insult of 14 year old Willow Palin (and her mother, Governor Palin).  The premise seems to be along the lines that "yeah, ok, letterman did what he did, but your guy, Rush Limbaugh did it too so what's your problem"?

But did he?

Here is a very interesting -and very informative - piece by Noel Sheppard of that says otherwise.  It is particularly worthwhile because Sheppard has added the verbatim transcript of Limbaugh's alleged insult to Chelsea Clinton.

Take a look, read the transcript, and decide for yourself (Limbaugh's verbatim comments are in blue):

NOW Bashes Limbaugh While Putting Letterman in Hall of Shame


By Noel Sheppard (Bio | Archive)
June 12, 2009 - 10:22 ET

In a fine example of liberal hypocrisy, the National Organization for Women placed "Late Show" host David Letterman in its Media Hall of Shame Thursday, and took the opportunity to bash conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh.

In its admonishment of Letterman's now infamous jokes about Sarah Palin and one of her daughters, NOW oddly felt the need to balance their indignation with a reference to an incident from Rush's television show back in the '90s.

Not surprisingly, NOW misrepresented what transpired back then.

But before we get there, here's NOW on Letterman (h/t Hot Air):

Comedians in search of a laugh should really know better than to snicker about men having sex with teenage girls (or young women) less than half their age.

The sexualization of girls and women in the media is reaching new lows these days -- it is exploitative and has a negative effect on how all women and girls are perceived and how they view themselves. Letterman also joked about what he called Palin's "slutty flight attendant look" -- yet another example of how the media love to focus on a woman politician's appearance, especially as it relates to her sexual appeal to men. Someone of Letterman's stature, who appears on what used to be known as "the Tiffany Network" (CBS), should be above wallowing in the juvenile, sexist mud that other comedians and broadcasters seem to prefer.

Sounds good, right? Unfortunately, the liberals at NOW felt the need to rehash something from the early '90s in order to bash Limbaugh and conservatives:

On that point, it's important to note that when Chelsea Clinton was 13 years old she was the target of numerous insults based on her appearance. Rush Limbaugh even referred to her as the "White House dog." NOW hopes that all the conservatives who are fired up about sexism in the media lately will join us in calling out sexism when it is directed at women who aren't professed conservatives. 

Isn't that special? Couldn't just chastise a fellow liberal without bringing up a conservative?

But that's not the most disgraceful aspect, for Limbaugh never referred to Chelsea as the White House dog. Here's how the Lying Liar website explained what really happened back then:

On his TV show in 1992, a few days after the Presidential election, Rush Limbaugh was reviewing In/Out lists (a popular fad at the time):

In todays New York Daily News right here its the obligatory in-out list. Every time theres a massive change somewhere, people are in, people are out. Im now out. It says about me on here, Rush Limbaugh, loud-mouthed conservative and Bush favorite. Hes out.

Rush commented that most of the other things on the days list were not funny, but that one of them in particular was. Rush quoted from the David Hinckley article

In: A cute kid in the White House. Out: Cute dog in the White House.

Could could we see the cute kid? Lets take a look at see who is the cute kid in the White House.

A picture of the cute dog (Millie) appeared on the screen instead of the cute kid (Chelsea).

Rush immediately said

No, no, no. Thats not the kid.

Then a picture of Chelsea Clinton came on the screen and Rush said

Thats thats the kid.

Rush apologized several times and told a story about how he had learned early in his career the importance of not making fun of someones appearance. He then apologized again and said

Im I hope you will forgive me. Im fatigued. Im tired

Before breaking to a commercial, Rush asked the audience what he could do to make amends for the incident and, in an odd, spontaneous joke, proceeded to spank himself. [...]

Rush has always maintained the incident was an accident. On his show four days later, Rush offered an explanation to his audience. First, the show played, Whos sorry now in the background and Limbaugh pointed to himself. Then he said:

Ladies and gentlemen, Im sorry. Let me tell you very quickly what happened last Friday night. There was a new in list and new out list that was published in the newspaper. The writer said in, cute kid in the White House; out, cute dog in the White House. Could we show the cute dog in the White House whos out, and they put up a picture of Chelsea Clinton back in the crew. And many of you people think that we did it on purpose to make a cheap comment on her appearance. And Im terribly sorry. I dontlook, that takes no talent whatsoever and I have a lot of talent. I dont need to get laughs by commenting on peoples looks, especially a young child whos done nothing wrong. I mean, she cant control the way she looks. And we reallywe do notwe do not do that on this kind of show. So put a picture up of her now and so we can square this.

They then showed the picture of Chelsea Clinton. She had a displeased look on her face, as if to show that she was not too happy with the mistake.

Rush continued:

All right. Were sorry. We didnt intend to hurt her feelings. Well be back with our final segment right after this. Dont go away.

With this in mind, NOW should be applauded for admonishing Letterman, but place itself in its own Hall of Shame for bringing up and misrepresenting this episode.



Ken Berwitz

From the invaluable we have this latest example of the Chavezing of the United States under Barack Obama.  The bold print is mine:

Whats behind Obamas sudden attempt to fire the AmeriCorps inspector general?

By: Byron York

Some strange and potentially suspicious events tonight concerning the Obama White House and the AmeriCorps program.  Ive been told that on Wednesday night the AmeriCorps inspector general, Gerald Walpin, received a call from the White House counsels office telling him that he had one hour to either resign or be fired.  The White House did not cite a reason.  "The answer that was given was that its just time to move on," one Senate source told me tonight.  "The president would like to have someone else in that position."

Inspectors General are part of every federal department. They are given the responsibility of independently investigating allegations of waste, fraud, and corruption in the government, without fear of interference by political appointees or the White House.  Last year Congress passed the Inspectors General Reform Act, which added new protections for IGs, including a measure requiring the president to give Congress 30 days prior notice before dismissing an IG.  The president must also give Congress an explanation of why the action is needed.  Then-Sen. Barack Obama was one of the co-sponsors of the Act.

Now, there is the hurried attempt to dismiss Walpin, without the required notice or cause.  After last nights call, Walpin got in touch with Congress, and it appears the White House has backed off, at least for now.  This afternoon, Republican Sen. Charles Grassley, who is something of a guardian angel for inspectors general, fired off a letter to the White House about the affair.

"I was troubled to learn that last night your staff reportedly issued an ultimatum to the AmeriCorps Inspector General Gerald Walpin that he had one hour to resign or be terminated," Grassley wrote.  "As you know, Inspectors General were created by Congress as a means to combat waste, fraud, and abuse and to be independent watchdogs ensuring that federal agencies were held accountable for their actions.  Inspectors General were designed to have a dual role reporting to both the President and Congress so that they would be free from undue political pressure.  This independence is the hallmark of all Inspectors General and is essential so they may operate independently, without political pressure or interference from agencies attempting to keep their failings from public scrutiny."

Grassley said he was "deeply troubled" by the Walpin matter and closed by asking the president "to review the Inspector General Reform Act you cosponsored and to follow the letter of the law should you have cause to remove any Inspector General."

UPDATE 1: Ive been trying to discover the real reason for Obamas move, and its still not clear.  Im told that it could be a combination of the normal tensions that surround any inspector generals office, or the presidents desire to get his own people in IG positions, or a dispute over a particular investigation.  "Bottom line," one source wrote, "getting rid of a tough, Republican-appointed IG who has been aggressively going after waste and fraud gives Obama a chance to replace that IG with a more compliant team player."

Im also told that a number of inspectors general around the government have been expressing concerns to Congress recently about threats to their independence.

UPDATE 2:  More information now, from the Associated Press.  The White House is going ahead with firing Walpin.  The firing apparently stems from Walpins investigation of a non-profit group, St. HOPE Academy, run by Kevin Johnson, the former NBA star who is now mayor of Sacramento, California (and a big Obama supporter).  "[Walpin] found that Johnson, a former all-star point guard for the Phoenix Suns, had used AmeriCorps grants to pay volunteers to engage in school-board political activities, run personal errands for Johnson and even wash his car," the AP reports.  In April, the U.S. attorney declined to file any criminal charges in the matter and criticized Walpins investigation.  But at the same time Johnson and St. HOPE agreed to repay about half of the $850,000 it had received from AmeriCorps.

Bottom line: The AmeriCorps IG accuses prominent Obama supporter of misusing AmeriCorps grant money.  Prominent Obama supporter has to pay back more than $400,000 of that grant money.  Obama fires AmeriCorps IG.

Notice that this information has been presented in an editorial.

Our watchdog media didnt report it.

They are too busy presenting their editorials as news.

The piece goes on to cite an Associated Press dispatch on the Walpin firing.  Among its key points:

-Obamas move follows an investigation by IG Gerald Walpin finding misuse of federal grants by a nonprofit education group led by Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, who is an Obama supporter and former NBA basketball star.

-The IG found that Johnson, a former all-star point guard for the Phoenix Suns, had used AmeriCorps grants to pay volunteers to engage in school-board political activities, run personal errands for Johnson and even wash his car.

-The U.S. attorneys office reached a settlement in the matter. Brown cited press accounts that said Johnson and the nonprofit would repay half of nearly $850,000 in grants it received.

This is hugo chavez in action.  Systematically remove the opposition, and the hell with laws or that silly multi-party stuff.

Do you like it?


Ken Berwitz

Here is an excerpt from a blog by Adam Brickley at  He picked up on a facet of david letterman's disgusting comments about Sarah Palin that I did not know about (I don't watch letterman and didn't actually see the top-ten list on Palin, I only knew about crudities aimed at the way she looks and her daughter being "knocked up")

Read it and see if you agree with him:

Thursday, June 11, 2009

By Adam Brickley, aka "ElephantMan"

I realize I'm a bit late to the outrage over David Letterman's vomit-inducing anti-Palin 'jokes', but trust me I have been watching - and the coverage here has been spectacular. That said, there is one other angle to this story which I am surprised is not getting more coverage. This little joke is rightly overshadowed by the outrage over Letterman's perverted sexual 'humor', but I cannot let this issue die without going back to item #3 from the "Top 10 Highlights of Sarah Palin's Trip to New York":

3. Finally met one of those Jewish people Mel Gibson's always talking about

Maybe I'm a little oversensitive about these things, but as both a Palin supporter and a practitioner of Judaism...well...Let's just say that I would tell you how I felt, but that would require me to use a long string of Yiddish profanity and this is a family friendly site.

In my opinion, Letterman was out of line here on three fronts. First, he is assuming that we all get the joke - as if we all assume that people not from the East or West Coasts are bigoted, xenophobic anti-Semites. Unfortunately for Dave, the idea that such comments are funny is actually limited to the elitist circles in which he apparently runs.

Second, he assumes that it's funny to joke about anti-Semitism - and it's not. Frankly, I found this joke about as funny as the time somebody (knowing my religion) asked me what the difference between a pot roast and a Jew is (the answer being that that the pot roast doesn't scream when you put it in the oven).

And finally, I would think that he owes Alaska's Jewish community an apology for just assuming that they don't exist (and yes, I know there are Jews in Alaska, because I distinctly remember Gov. Palin having a bill signing at a synagogue last year). Listen, I grew up in Colorado, so I will admit that Western Jewish communities are much smaller than those on the coasts - but I can guarantee you that there are Jews all over the country, and people meet them all of the time. Frankly, the assertion that an Alaskan - or any other rural American - has never met a Jew is ridiculous, and the fact that Letterman even thought about cracking that joke is evidence that he lives in a New York bubble.

For the record, Sarah Palin is a staunch, outspoken supporter of Israel.  And david letterman is even smaller than what I thought before reading this - which is a major accomplishment.

One more thing:  I'm still waiting for CBS to say something about his disgusting comments.  If they have, I didn't see it. 

And I'm also waiting for all the groups, and political web sites, that had a collective cow when don imus called the Rutgers female basketball team a bunch of "nappy-headed ho's".  I guess saying that a Governor and Vice Presidential candidate looks like a "slutty flight attendant" and joking that her 14 year old daughter was part of a statutory rape is just long as they're Republicans, that is.



Ken Berwitz


House Health-Care Bill to Include $600 Billion in Tax Increases


By Laura Litvan


June 12 (Bloomberg) -- Health-care overhaul legislation being drafted by House Democrats will include $600 billion in tax increases and $400 billion in cuts to Medicare and Medicaid, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles Rangel said.


Democrats will work on the bills details next week as they struggle through what kind of heartburn it will cause to agree on how to pay for revamping the health-care system, Rangel, a New York Democrat, said today. He also said the measures cost will reach beyond the $634 billion President Barack Obama proposed in his budget request to Congress as a down payment for the policy changes.


Asked whether the cost of a health-care overhaul would be more than $1 trillion, Rangel said, the answer is yes.

House Democrats plan to release their legislation


We deserve this. 

We elected a hard-left President absolutely unqualified to hold the office, in 100 miles over his head, whose entire adult life has consisted of spending huge amounts of other people's money. 

And we handed him a lopsidedly Democratic congress in which the hard left a) rules and b) is largely obeisant to the crowd. 

When that is who you elect, this is what happens.

So now, not content with the trillions upon trillions of dollars in additional debt that is literally bankrupting what's left of this country, Obama and his congress will now add another trillion in debt to ruin our health care system.  What the hell, if you're spending money you don't have, spend lots of it.

We have a year and a half before we can do something about this, and even then we won't be able to rid ourselves of Obama, only some of his congress.  It can't come too soon.




Ken Berwitz

First off, let's get our terms straight.  The terms in question are "feud" and "attack":

-A feud is when two parties go after each other in a nasty and/or bitter and/or violent way

-An attack is when one party goes after another

With this in mind, I would like to tell you about Matt Lauer's interview of Governor Sarah Palin on this morning's Today Show.

I will begin by pointing out that Matt Lauer, both yesterday and today, referred to the letterman/Palin incident as a "nasty feud" or just "feud".  The word "feud" implies that letterman and Palin are each going after the other.  But the truth is that Palin did no such thing.  It was letterman, out of nowhere, making crude, offensive, viciously insulting comments about Palin and her 14 year old daughter in front of millions of TV viewers. 

That's not a feud, Matt.  It's an attack.  Learn the difference - or someone might think you're hopelessly biased against Sarah Palin and her family.  They just might....

Now let's talk about the questions Lauer asked Ms. Palin:

The questioning had two parts - the first of them involved a 26 billion dollar natural gas pipeline that will wind up supplying the "lower 48".   Lauer's questionning was not cream-puff and it was not neutral.  He first challenged Palin by quoting disparaging remarks made about it by a Republican rival (who voted in favor of the pipeline, by the way).  When this didn't fluster Palin, he then challenged the need for natural gas being pumped from Alaska to the rest of the country.  Palin's answer was terrific (click here to see the entire interview).

That isn't what a neutral interviewer does, that is what an adversary does.  Great job, Matt.  Very professional.

Now Lauer moved on to the letterman "jokes"  He started out by referring to them as "this feud".   As I pointed out above, it isn't a feud -- and calling it one suggests an equality between letterman and Palin that did not exist in this situation (in other words, it is an outright lie).

Here is a video of this part of the interview (please note that whoever put this video up accuses Palin of distorting what letterman said --- watch the video and you'll realize how ridiculous and untrue that is):

Here are the questions Palin was asked and my take on them (If I were you I'd watch the video and read this simultaneously):

-Lauer first asked how Ms. Palin heard about letterman's comments  "Were you watching, or did someone tell you about (letterman's comments)?

-Next, Lauer said that letterman did not mention Palin's daughter by name, and that he was not referring to her 14 year old daughter - the one Ms. Palin took to Yankee Stadium!  What was the point of this half-baked defense of letterman?   That's it's ok for him to compare Palin to a slut, as long as he's also doing the same for her 18 year old rather than her 14 year old? Pathetic.

-Next Lauer picked up on Palin's statement that a joke like this contributes to sexual exploitation of minors by older men.  Lauer took on a patronizing, condescending tone and said" was a joke, it was probably by most standards in bad taste, but can you really connect the dots to criminal activity the way you did in that statement?"

Breathtaking. In just those few words Lauer's legitimized letterman's slimy, weaselly rationale (hey, it's just a joke), that it probably was in bad taste (which means maybe it wasn't) by most standards (by whose standards is that in good taste?) and, by his tone of voice, that Palin was wrong to connect it to "criminal activity" (i.e. older men sexually exploiting younger women:  keep in mind that david letterman is 62 years old and Willow Palin is 14).  What else do you need to know about Matt Lauer's "neutrality"?

-Lauer then stated that letterman offered to have her on the show so they could "hash things out".   Hash what out?  This wasn't some back-and-forth between the two of them which could be resolved, this was letterman acting like s sophomoric, boorish hate-filled pig. 

Did Lauer challenge the ridiculous "hash this out" line?  Nope, not at all. 

Instead, he referenced Palin's written refusal to go on the show ("The Palins have no intention of providing a ratings boost for David Letterman by appearing on his it would be wise to keep Willow away from David Letterman") and challenged Palin to explain what the part about keeping Willow from letterman meant, by asking "I'd like you to explain what that meant.  Are you suggesting that david letterman could not be trusted around a 14 year old girl........but is that not perhaps in bad taste also, Governor, if you're y'know, suggesting that a 62 year old man couldn't be trusted? 

Un-effing-believable.  Lauer literally tried to equate letterman's crudely offensive insults with a statement that it would be wise to keep the daughter letterman insulted away from him.

I could go on.  But if you don't see the disrespect and condescension Lauer showed Palin and the dishonesty and tastelessness of his questions by now, you never will.

But listen to him squeal like a stuck pig if you call him biased.


Ken Berwitz

Excerpted from an Associated Press article:

WASHINGTON President Barack Obama says he has lost confidence in the inspector general who investigates AmeriCorps and other national service programs and has told Congress he is removing him from the position.


Obama's move follows an investigation by IG Gerald Walpin finding misuse of federal grants by a nonprofit education group led by Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, who is an Obama supporter and former NBA basketball star.

This, I am truly sorry to say, is not an isolated incident.  It is the latest in a series of chavez-like moves.

When do our wonderful "neutral" media wake up?  Just before it's their turn to get the chavez treatment - at which point it will be too late?  Or ever?


Ken Berwitz

I just checked CBS' web site.  It has tons of promotional and fan-oriented material on david letterman and you can see his entire commentary (not apology - he didn't apologize for a thing) about Sarah and Willow Palin.

But there is no statement about letterman's vile, vicious, offensive hurtful and eminently unfunny attacks and the Palins.

Did CBS have anything to say about don imus' calling the Rutgers woman's basketball team a bunch of "nappy ho's"?  You bet it did.

But one of its own does a disgusting hit job on Sarah Palin and her 14 year old daughter, saying the mother looks like a slut and the daughter was "knocked up" at Yankee stadium, not to mention an anti-Semitic implication that their only understanding of Jews is what Mel Gibson thinks of them, and all you hear from CBS is the sound of silence.

letterman and CBS are beneath contempt. 

Buy Our Book Here!

Return to Current Blog
We're Hopelessly Partisan, is a web site which is dedicated to honest, blunt, debate on the issues of our time.

About Us

Privacy Notice: In conjunction with the ads on this site, third parties may be placing and reading cookies on your browser, or using web beacons to collect information.

At “Hopelessly Partisan” we discuss all issues, big and small. In here, nothing is sacred and nothing is out of bounds.

So settle back, preferably after laughing your way through a copy of “The Hopelessly Partisan Guide To American Politics”, and let the battle begin. In this blog, your opinion counts every bit as much as anyone else's, maybe even more.

And to show that my willingness to provide all sides of the issues is sincere, here are links to a variety of web sites, from the left, the middle (more or less) and the right. Read them and either smile in agreement or gnash your teeth in anger!!