Wednesday, 18 November 2009

IRONIC HUMOR AT ITS BEST

Ken Berwitz

For people who are ironic humor, this first paragraph of a Reuters article should make them laugh until their sides hurt:

BEIJING, Nov 18 (Reuters) - President Barack Obama gave his sternest warning yet about the need to contain rising U.S. deficits, saying on Wednesday that if government debt were to pile up too much, it could lead to a double-dip recession.

That is roughly the equivalent of Dell warning about the need to contain the rising use of personal computers.

But it is from Mr. Obama, so why should we be surprised?

Maybe he can just tell us he saved or created enough revenue to end the deficit, the way he told us that he saved or created 1,000,000 jobs while the economy lost 3,000,000 of them.

If you like someone peeing on your head and telling you that it's raining, you must think Barack Obama is the greatest President in US history.


OBAMA: FIRST THE VERDICT, THEN THE TRIAL

Ken Berwitz

Not three minutes ago, on the Today Show, Chuck Todd asked President Obama if he understood why people are troubled that "the terrorist" khalid sheikh mohammed (Todd used the term "terrorist") was being tried in a civil court in New York City.

Mr. Obama's answer was "they won't be troubled when he's convicted and sentenced...." (he might have said "sentenced to death", but I don't know for sure.  I didn't expect that I'd need to hear every word he was saying at the time.  I'll revise this with the exact words when NBC posts the interview).

Wasn't it the Queen of Hearts who said "first the verdict, then the trial"?  Is that who we elected?

Look, I happen to agree that this "man" is a terrorist scumbag.  But the President of the United States stating as much in so many words before the trial is going to be used around the world as proof that this isn't a trial at all, it is a kangaroo court; a phony charade. 

In other words, Mr. Obama handed the mother of all propaganda opportunities to our enemies.

One other thing:  just this week, didn't keith olbermann say that declaring a verdict before a trial for nidal malik hasan was "...spitting on the dead of Fort Hood"?

Do you think he'll say the same about Obama and the almost 3,000 dead of 9/11?

Yeah, right.  Sure.

=====================================================================

UPDATE:  Here is the verbatim transcript of this exchange, straight from Today's web site:

NBC: Khalid Sheikh Mohammed can you understand why it is offensive to some for this terrorist to get all the legal privileges of any American citizen?

Obama: I don't think it will be offensive at all when he's convicted and when the death penalty is applied to him.

When an incredulous Chuck Todd followed up by challenging his comment, Obama tried clumsily to weasel out of his clear, defnitive statement.  His "strategy", if you can call it that?  To revise what he meant by "offensive":

NBC: But having that kind of confidence of a conviction I mean one of the purposes of doing going to the Justice Department and not military court is to show of the the world our fairness in our court system.

Obama: Well

NBC: But you also just said that he was going to be convicted and given the death penalty.

Obama: Look what I said was people will not be offended if that's the outcome. I'm not pre-judging, I'm not going to be in that courtroom, that's the job of prosecutors, the judge and the jury.....

As you can plainly see, President Obama's initial statement used the word to guarantee a guilty verdict and sentence of death. ("I don't think it will be offensive at all WHEN he's convicted and WHEN the death penalty is applied to him."  Not "if", but "WHEN".)

But his weasel-out try completely changes the meaning.  Now he's saying that people won't be offended IF that's the outcome (suddenly, five seconds later, it is in doubt, you see).  Not even a good try, Mr. Obama.

And there is more.  By saying that "...people will not be offended IF that's the outcome", he directly suggests that people will be offended if that isn't the outcome --- in other words, the people have pre-judged khalid sheikh mohammed.  But not him.  He's better than us all.

Summarizing:  First Mr. Obama clearly pre-judges the case and tells us the verdict.  Then he pretends he didn't pre-judge, but suggests that we have -- which therefore puts him above us/makes him a superior being.

There you have it, folks.  President Obama, in all his glory.

Using keith olbermann's "logic", if what Bill Kristol said was "spitting on the dead of Fort Hood, than this must be spitting and doing something else that rhymes with spitting on the dead of 9/11.

Be sure to tune in and hear him go off on President Obama at least as viciously and offensively as he did on Bill Kristol (who, by the way, didn't say what olbermann attacked him for at all). 

It will happen right after they open a Hooters in downtown Riyadh.

free` Yes, lets have civilian trials for the gitmo terrorists, what could go wrong>>> Six-year jail term for Sears Tower plotter. google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5hcLLxAI0HtlC_rLSntOZCnLXCyHw what a sick joke this is. (11/18/09)

Zeke ... The Queen of Hearts also said, "The words mean exactly what I choose them to mean". (11/18/09)

steve schneider nixon was crucified in the press for saying that charles manson was guilty before the trial. steve (11/18/09)


WHO WON IN NEW YORK'S 23RD DISTRICT?

Ken Berwitz

Remember that victory by Democrat William Owens over Conservative Douglas Hoffman, in New York's usually-Republican 23rd District?  The one in which Republican candidate, Diedre Scozzafava, dropped out and supported Owens?  The one Democrats were crowing so much about?

Well, it is becoming increasingly evident that Owens was the beneficiary of voter fraud.  A lot of it.  Maybe so much voter fraud that he didn't win the election at all.

Here's a little something that most people don't know (thank you, media):  William Owens has not yet been certified as the winner.    Thus the 23rd district should currently be vacant.

But this did not stop Nancy Pelosi from swearing Mr. Owens into the house of representatives and accepting his yea vote on ObamaCare (despite the fact that he ran a campaign assuring voters he would vote against it).  Rules and legalities do not appear to be very high on Ms. Pelosi's to-do list, nor does making good on campaign promises seem very important to William Owens.

Here, from Douglas Hoffman, are the particulars -- and the reason that he has "unconceded" the election:

Dear Fellow Conservative,

As evidence surfaces, we find out that reported results from election night were far from accurate. ACORN and the unions did their best to try and sway the results to Obamacare supporter Bill Owens.

I was forced to concede after receiving two pieces of grim news - - down 5,335 votes with 93 percent of the vote counted on election night - and barely won my stronghold in Oswego County.
On Election Night, the information we received was far different from what we received this week!

Rest assured, they will not succeed, and I am therefore revoking my statement of concession.

That is why I am writing you today. Recent developments leave me to wonder who is scheming behind closed doors, twisting arms and stealing elections from the voters of NY-23.

I'm sure you are as dismayed as I am to learn of the mischief that took place in Oswego and neighboring counties. We know this would not be the first time for the ACORN faithful to tamper with democracy.

Now it's time to actually count every legal ballot and I need your help to ensure the people of NY-23 get the Congressman THEY ELECTED. Please donate now to help me ensure every vote is counted!

A recanvassing in the 11-county district shows Owens' lead has narrowed to 3,026. In Oswego County, I was reported to lead by only 500 votes with 93 percent of the vote counted election night, but inspectors found I actually won by 1,748 votes

Lets force them keep this recanvassing active! Lets give this election a chance to end differently!
Oswego County elections officials blame the mistakes on "chaos" in their call-in center that included a phone system foul-up, and on inspectors who read numbers incorrectly when phoning in results. This sounds like a tactic right from the ACORN playbook.

The district's second biggest voter turnout was in Jefferson County, where I had also benefited from a turnaround since election night, gaining another 700 votes. Owens led by 300 votes on the final election night tally, but after recanvassing, I'm now leading by 424 votes.

Jerry Eaton, the Republican elections commissioner for Jefferson County, said inspectors found a problem in four districts where my vote total was mistakenly entered as zero.

The new vote totals mean the race will be decided by absentee ballots, of which the state Board of Elections distributed about 10,200.

The people of NY-23 deserve to have their ballots counted properly, but we can't let ACORN or the unions keep that from happening. They have more lawyers and more experience tampering with democracy.
State Board of Elections Communications Director John Conklin said the state sent a letter to the House Clerk last week explaining that no winner had been determined in the 23rd District.

Now it's time to actually count every legal ballot and I need your help to ensure the people of NY-23 get the Congressman THEY ELECTED. Please donate now to help me ensure every vote is counted!

We need to make sure that fair elections are a reality in NY-23, just like our Founding Fathers envisioned.  So long as we remain the "land of the free," we MUST ensure every vote is counted.
Help us today so we may be the first of many conservative victories during the Obama Regime.

Yours in Freedom,

Doug Hoffman

Maybe Owens did win.  Maybe.  But if he did, it is by far less than the initial vote total which informed Hoffman's decision to concede.  And maybe he didn't win at all. 

There are two stories to this election:

-One is that there clearly was voter fraud, with the pivotal issues being 1) how much there was and 2) whether it changed the overall result.

-The other is that it is a non-story to our wonderful "neutral" media, which seems to have little interest in what went on there. 

So, do you think media would have more interest if it were a Republican winning in a reliably Democratic district, and these "mistakes", "accidents", etc. were uncovered afterwards? 

Some questions just answer themselves, don't they?

Zeke ... Fraud on the vote count ! ! ! ... .... .... Wonder if some of the Votes were cast illegally .... .... People voting multiple times. .... Voters imported to cast votes on close elections .... Illegal aliens signed up to vote. .... Dead People voting ... People who moved to other states still voting (or someone using their name to still vote in the old district). (11/19/09)

Zeke ... "It doesn't matter who votes, it is who counts the ballots." --- Josef Stalin ... ... .... .... This is Norm Coleman / Al Franken all over again. ... Guess the Dems actually did learn something with Gore in 2000 (11/19/09)


BILLBOARDS TO REMEMBER

Ken Berwitz

I saw this at www.freerepublic.com, and thought some of the (obviously fake) billboards were very funny.  Maybe you will too.

Enjoy:

Crazy Billboards From Around The World

Submitted for entertainment purposes only! Whether they're real or not is questionable however, they're quite funny!
 
 
 
 
 

.


OBAMA'S POPULARITY: SLIP-SLIDING AWAY?

Ken Berwitz

We voters are not stupid.  Yes, we can be fooled.  But even though it may take a little time, we usually catch on.

If the latest Quinnipiac Poll data are accurate (I'm always skeptical of political polls), we voters are finally catching on to President Obama:

 


Quinnipiac: Obama Under 50 For First Time

 

President Barack Obama's job approval rating is under 50% for the first time, according to a new national survey from Quinnipiac University. The survey, conducted November 9-16 among 2,518 registered voters, shows 48% approve of the way Obama is handling his job as president, while 42% disapprove. That is a slight decline from Quinnipiac's last poll in early October, which showed 50% approval and 41% disapproval.

Support for Obama's handling of specific issues has also declined in the past month, most notably on Afghanistan:

Afghanistan
Approve 38 (-4 vs. last poll 10/8)
Disapprove 49 (+9)

Economy
Approve 43 (-4)
Disapprove 52 (+6)

Foreign Policy
Approve 49 (no change)
Disapprove 42 (+5)

A plurality (48%) still believes we are "doing the right thing" by fighting the war in Afghanistan, though that's a four point drop from the same question in October's survey.

The public is slightly in favor (47% to 42%) of Obama granting General McChrysta'ls request for 40,000 additional troops, though 55% say they would like to see us spend no more than two more years with troops in Afghanistan.

Fifty-three percent say the "trust" President Obama to make the right decision regarding troop levels in Afghanistan - a net 6-point decline from last month - while 77% say they trust the US military to make the right recommendations on troop levels - also a 7 point net decline in support from last month.

Fifrty-four percent believe we will stay in Afghanistan too long rather than leave too soon, but a slim majority - 51% - believe we will avoid Afghanistan becoming a replay of Vietnam.

And before you assume this is some kind of one-poll aberration, pleasee note that:

-Gallup has him at 50%. 

-Rasmussen has him at just 47%...and a -14% negative disparity between people who strongly approve of his performance (26%) and strongly disapprove (40%).

-Fox has him at 50%

-The highest that any major poll shows for Mr. Obama is the low-to-mid 50's, even though he was in the high 60's and even low 70's at the beginning of his administration.

What does this mean?  Maybe nothing.  But maybe plenty, as the Democratic majority decides whether to vote for or against health care, cap and trade, and other controversial measures.  If the head of the party is sinking, what happens to them if they vote for his agenda?

We'll find out soon enough.....


THE ALABAM MAERSK: TRY #2

Ken Berwitz

 

I think Im supposed to feel good about this story.  But I dont.

 

Ok, first the story, from Sarah Childress at the Wall St. Journal.  Then my reasons for not feeling good about it.

 Maersk Alabama Evades Second Pirate Attack

By SARAH CHILDRESS

NAIROBI, Kenya -- The Maersk Alabama, the American-flagged ship captured briefly by pirates in April, came under fire again early Tuesday morning off Somalia's coast, but evaded the attackers.

Four men in a skiff sped within 300 yards of the container ship, firing automatic weapons in an attempt to board it, according to the U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet. A security team aboard the Alabama fired back and managed to fend off the attack, the Navy said.

The onboard security detail was a private contractor, not a military detachment, according to a Fifth Fleet spokesman. A U.S. P-3 surveillance aircraft had established radio communications with the ship's captain midafternoon Wednesday, and the ship reported all aboard were safe and the ship was proceeding to its next port of call.

In the attack, the Alabama's crew also took evasive maneuvers and used a new technique to repel pirates: a so-called long-range acoustic device, which emits high-pitched sounds painful to the human ear.

A vessel from the European Union Naval Force Somalia, a mission set up to fight piracy, was dispatched in an attempt to track down the skiff.

"This is a great example of how merchant mariners can take pro-active action to prevent being attacked and why we recommend that ships follow industry best practices if they're in high-risk areas," said Vice Adm. Bill Gortney, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command.

The Navy said that the Maersk Alabama is en route to Mombasa, Kenya, its original destination. It's expected to arrive early Sunday morning.

Somali pirates seized the Maersk Alabama in April. The crew managed to retake control of the ship, but in a dramatic turn of events, the pirates took the ship's captain, Richard Phillips, hostage. He was held at gunpoint aboard the Alabama's lifeboat for five days before he was rescued by U.S. Naval forces, who killed three of his captors, and arrested the fourth.

First off, I congratulate the security personnel now on the Maersk Alabama for fending off the attack.  Thats great as far as it goes.

 

So why am I unhappy about this incident?

 

Let me answer with a question:  Why werent these jackals blown out of the water?  Why were they simply sent on their way with nothing more than a possible earache?

 

Does anyone seriously think this will deter them from trying again?  

 

When the Alabama was attacked last April, here is what I had to say about it: 

Another day has passed without the USA acting against Somalian thugs/terrorists/pirates. 

But the thugs/terrorists/pirates remain in full operation. How long before they take another one of our ships?  And what do you think they will do with a US crew?

 

Every day this is allowed to continue is a day that every American crew member on every ship is at mortal risk.

 

Are we planning to act against them where it counts - i.e. where their boats are docked?  Or are we waiting for Americans to join the nationals of so many other countries and become hostages - or be killed outright, which is specifically what is being threatened?

 

Are we waiting for the rest of the world to act?  Are we waiting for the UN?  What have they done through all the Somalian hijackings so far, besides nothing?  What will they do if an American crew is taken, besides nothing?

 

The time is now.  Right now. 

 

Send in our planes.  Send in our troops.  Not to the cities, but to the ports and contiguous areas around them.

 

Wipe these bastards out.  blow up every ship that cannot 100% prove it is not engaged in the pirate/thug/terrorism trade.  Put them the hell out of business.

 

And when the countries whose people are being held hostage tell us that we're doing the wrong thing?  Respond, firmly and decisively, that it is their unwillingness to act which caused the hostage situation, not our actions to protect US interests.  Tell them that if we don't stop this right now, there will be more hostages, not less.  It has to stop, and the sooner the better.

 

Then let them cry and moan about it.  That, apparently, is the extent of what they are willing to do.

 

This cannot go on any longer.  Period.

 

Now, over a half year later, they have tried to take the exact same ship.  Do you think that is a coincidence?  I sure dont.  Nor do I think they will stop until they have the Maersk Alabama, or another US ship.  And when that happens they will either hold and showcase its crew to the world as a warning not to do anything about Somalian piracy, or kill some of them for vengeance over their failure in April and showcase the rest.

 

What I said in April still goes today.  100%.


OBAMA'S PRIORITIES: IRANIAN DEMOCRACY VERSUS ISRAELI APARTMENT BUILDINGS

Ken Berwitz

In June, Barack Obama looked the other way as Iranian thugs beat democracy protesters in the streets.  And now he is looking the other way as they sentence numbers of them to long prison terms and death for their crime of disputing a phony election.

But when it comes to Israel?  I'll let the Associated Press show you the difference:

Obama criticizes new Israeli move on settlements

AP  U.S. President Barack Obama exits from Air Force One upon his arrival at the Osan U.S. Air Force Base 

Wed Nov 18, 6:33 am ET

 

BEIJING President Barack Obama says Israel's latest move to build hundreds of new apartments in a neighborhood claimed by the Palestinians complicates administration efforts to relaunch peace talks and embitters the Palestinians.

 

Obama told Fox News in an interview Wednesday that additional settlement building doesn't make Israel safer. He said such moves make it harder to achieve peace in the region, and embitters the Palestinians in a way that he said could be very dangerous.

 

Obama and the Palestinians have demanded that Israel halt settlement construction.

 

The Jerusalem city government moved forward Tuesday with plans to build in a Jewish neighborhood in East Jerusalem, which Palestinians claim for their future capital.

Iranian people protesting their thugocracy and demanding a democratic country?  Not worthy of concern.

But Israel building apartnments in a neighborhood of its own capital city?  An outrage, worthy of a tongue-lashing.

According to exit polls, 78% of Jews voted for Barack Obama in the last election.  Presumably, most of them support Israel.

I hope they're happy with what they got.  Speaking as one of the other 22%, I can assure you I am not.


THE JOB STIMULUS FRAUD

Ken Berwitz

The "saving and creating" of jobs claimed by the Obama administration is a fraud.  There's no other word that fits as well.

From Investor's Business Daily:

Stimulus Fraud

Posted 11/17/2009 07:49 PM ET

The Economy: We knew something was funny when the White House claimed that 640,000 to 1 million jobs had been created from this year's stimulus. What we didn't know was that it would turn into a massive fraud.

Not only have 640,000 new jobs not been created from the stimulus an absurd claim, given the economy's loss of nearly 4 million payroll positions this year but it now seems that even the jobs themselves are fictional.

Thanks to the digging of a number of data sleuths, it turns out that many of the jobs reported by states come from made-up congressional districts.

This would be funny if it weren't a criminal waste of public funds. And yet, G. Edward DeSeve, who runs the government's economic recovery program, says the errors are "relatively few" and "don't change the fundamental conclusions one can draw from the data."

Excuse us? The "relatively few" errors are in fact thousands in number. But that's the pernicious place we find ourselves today a public official defending shoddy accounting that looks an awful lot like fraud to the tune of billions of dollars.

One example: the 15th Congressional District of Arizona, where 30 jobs were salvaged with $761,420 in spending, according to Recovery.gov, the official government Web site. As ABC News reports: "There is no 15th Congressional District in Arizona; the state has only eight districts."

States as diverse as Kansas, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Ohio, Minnesota and West Virginia also reported phony jobs.

Stimulus jobs were also reported in 35 congressional districts in Washington, D.C., and four U.S. territories. The problem: None of those jurisdictions even has congressional districts.

All told, according to the useful Web site Watchdog.org, some $6.4 billion was spent to "create or save" 30,000 jobs in phantom districts. That comes out to about $225,000 per nonexistent job. And that's only what's been found so far.

The Washington Examiner's bogus-job count is even higher at 75,343, a figure likely to climb as more are discovered.

Some cases were egregious. California's state university system took in $268.5 million in stimulus funds, claiming it "saved" 26,000 jobs. It has since admitted that few, if any, jobs were really at risk.

The government's response to all this? "Human beings make mistakes," shrugged Recovery Board spokesman Ed Pound on Monday. But by Tuesday, as the furor grew, the board's DeSeve was vowing to go through reports with a "fine-tooth comb."

But this should have been done all along. The official Web site vows that stimulus spending will "be subject to unprecedented transparency and accountability," and that inspectors general of 28 federal agencies will "continually review" their spending.

To our knowledge, however, none of the errors was found by an inspector general. All were discovered by private individuals curious about what their tax dollars were being spent on.

Imagine for a moment a CEO standing before the public and claiming similar bookkeeping errors. He'd be arrested for fraud, frog-marched from his office, tried, convicted and left to rot in jail.

We said from the start that the stimulus and TARP programs would be an invitation to fraud, waste and abuse. Sadly, this has proved true. Yet no one is likely to suffer so much as a reprimand.

As the White House talks about another stimulus, Americans need to know that the promises of transparency and openness in the first program haven't been kept. And that billions of their tax dollars are being wasted.

A fraud.  A blatant lie.  An insult to our intelligence.  And a disgrace.

Thank you, President Obama, for showing us how far you and your administration are willing to push the envelope.  It gives us invaluable insight regarding the confidence we should have in every other promise/claim that you make.

Zeke .... White House announces 640,000 - 1,000,000 new & saved jobs. One job was eliminated ... the guy who checks those numbers ...... (also from IBD) (11/18/09)

Zeke ... Mr Obama promised us a TRANSPARENT administration ... ... and he's delivered, with Invisible Jobs (11/18/09)


OBAMA'S FURY

Ken Berwitz

What makes President Obama furious?  Here's your answer, courtesy of Ben Smith writing for www.politico.com:

A firing offense?

Obama, speaking to CBS in Beijing, says he's "furious' about the stream of leaks characterizing the Afghanistan deliberations.

THE PRESIDENT: I think I am angrier than Bob Gates about it, partly because we have these deliberations in the Situation Room for a reason because we are making decisions that are life-and-death, that affect how our troops will be able to operate in a theater of war. For people to be releasing information during the course of deliberation -- where we havent made final decisions yet -- I think is not appropriate.

CHIP REID: Firing offense??

THE PRESIDENT: Absolutely"


What's odd about this is that many of the leaks (though certainly not all) have seemed deliberate, in tandem with Flickr photo releases from the meetings and in line with a message that Obama is considering deeply. And indeed, leaking has been a signature of the transition from the Plouffe/campaign era to a governing era run by Rahm Emanuel, who talks frequently to the press and whose hiring was one of the first major Obama leaks. Leaks from more senior officials make lower-level staffers, in turn, feel that it's not actually a firing offense

Let's think about this.

President Obama was told by his commanding General in Afghanistan that he needed 40,000 more troops there.  General McChrystal said that, without them, the troops already deployed would be in too much danger, and that not sending the additional 40,000 could result in our losing the war.

That was in August.

It is now late November.  About a quarter of a year later.  And President Obama still has not made any decision on whether to accept his own commanding General's recommendations.  

And he is furious that information relating to this three-month dithering and dawdling-fest is leaking out?  That's what gets to him?

Now that we know what infuriates President Obama, here's what infuriates me:

-I am infuriated that the President of the United States is incapable of making a timely decision on a matter of this importance;

-I am infuriated that he is endangering our men and women in uniform;

-I am infuriated that he is risking our success in Afghanistan. 

Under President Bush, the taliban was removed from power in a matter of weeks.  It went from ruling Afghanistan to hiding in caves and having limited influence among the most fanatic radical Islamists.  But now it is making a comeback.  And part of that comeback, maybe a very large part, is due to our President's inability to commit to anything.

Mr. Obama:  You are the President of the United States.  MAKE AN EFFING DECISION.


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