Thursday, 14 January 2010


Ken Berwitz

Earlier today I showed readers an email sent by the head of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, J. B. Poersch, in which he refered to Republican candidate Scott Brown as a "teabagger".

As you know, that term has nothing to do with the "tea party" movement.  It is not used by them, for the obvious reason that "teabagging" is an explicit sexual term which refers to dipping a man's scrotum in someone else's mouth. 

But Democrats and the left (often one and the same) have used that degrading, offensive term to define the movement almost from day one - and a good many in our wonderful "neutral" media have done so as well. 

If the situation were reversed - i.e. if Scott Brown's supporters were name-calling Democratic groups in general and/or Martha Coakley in particular with an equally offensive, degrading name - do you think this would just be glossed over?  Or do you think our media would be infuriated and condemnatory over it?  We both know the answer.

With that in mind, here is a Fox News account of another Democrat, New York Senator Chuck Schumer, using the same vile term to insult Scott Brown:

Schumer Pulls 'Tea-Bagger' Card on GOP Candidate Brown


New York Sen. Charles Schumer, who famously hammered then-Sen. Alfonse D'Amato for calling him a "putz-head" in their hot 1998 campaign, was accused Thursday of stepping into the gutter himself after he sent out a fundraising e-mail in which he called Massachusetts Republican Senate candidate Scott Brown a "far-right tea-bagger."  


The two-term Democrat, in accusing Brown of being aligned with the conservative "tea party" movement, used a term that every tea party critic knows refers to a sexual act. 


"Chuck has a way of saying things that I don't think he really understands or means, and it's unfortunate," Brown told Fox News Thursday when asked about the e-mail. "I'm not into name-calling. ... so shame on Chuck."


Liberal television hosts had a field day with the "tea bag" term last year when the tea party movement gained steam. It seemed to lose its luster after the joke got old, but Schumer brought it back as he urged supporters to vote for Democrat Martha Coakley in next Tuesday's high-stakes special election. 


"Martha Coakley is running to fill the rest of Ted Kennedy's term, and her opponent is a far-right tea-bagger Republican," Schumer wrote. 


Critics pointed out that Schumer cried foul in 1998 after D'Amato called him a "putz-head" during a meeting with Jewish supporters. The Yiddish word "putz" literally means "penis," though it has taken on a less vulgar meaning in common usage. Schumer, a Brooklyn congressman at the time, seized on D'Amato's insult and blasted the three-term Republican senator right up until the election for initially denying that he said it. 


Schumer won the election, was re-elected in 2004 and is seeking re-election again this year.

Two Democrats use the term tea-bagger in emails on the same day?  It is pretty clear that this is not random, it is a strategy.

But whatever it is, Chuck Schumer, who was outraged at the language used against him by Alfonse D'Amato, is happy to use even worse language against a Republican who hadn't said a thing about him, and who just might be elected as his senatorial colleague next week.

Maybe D'Amato had a point.

Zeke ... ... Kindly do not refer to Mr. Schumer as a PUTZ. It is insulting and demeaning .... to Putzes. ... ... Schumer is the epitome of shallow grandstanding, unenlightened leadership and overall inept uselessness. ... ... (01/15/10)


Ken Berwitz

George Mitchell, former senator from Maine and now President Obama's go-to guy on middle east affairs, has been touting a poll that shows a plurality of Israelis support President Obama.

That's pretty amazing, since every other poll shows a vastly different, more negative appraisal.

So how can this be?  Well, here's your answer, from Ed Lasky, writing for American Thinker:

January 13, 2010

Mitchell uses suspect poll to pressure Israel

Ed Lasky

George Mitchell, President Obama's Middle East envoy, is using a suspect poll regarding Israelis' views of Barack Obama in order, apparently, to pressure Israel.

Here is an excerpt of the Q and A between Charlie Rose and George Mitchell:

Charlie Rose: Why is President Obama's popularity so low in Israel? It's four percent.

George Mitchell: No, that's completely false...Several polls that I've seen in the past month show that he is-I'll give you the numbers, 49 favorable, 45 unfavorable, 43 favorable, 37 unfavorable; it's a reasonable. A plurality support him in Israel and a small plurality oppose him.

 The poll Mitchell relies upon seems to be from the New America Foundation. As far as I have been able to determine, this has been the only one poll regarding the views of Israelis towards the administration that comes anywhere near matching Mitchell's statements.

Previous polls done by Israelis themselves have shown far more problematic views  , including one that show only 6% of Israelis who see the administration as pro-Israel  and one that shows only 4% of Israelis Jews consider Obama pro-Israel.

The New American Foundation is a left wing group, with a connection to Jonathan Soros, son of George Soros . Steve Rattner is involved; Bernard Schwartz, Lew Cullman also involved -- very generous donors to not just the Democratic Party but also strong supporters of Barack Obama. James Fallows is the Chairman - he certainly leans to the left.

Ben Smith, of Politico , wrote this about the poll's authors:


The surveys authors, who support robust Israeli and American engagement in the peace process, said in an analysis accompanying the poll's findings that the numbers are encouraging, and that the responses leave Netanyahu room to maneuver toward peace, and Obama sufficient support to demand it.


This poll was basically done by Jim Gerstein (founding VP of J Street - a group that its founder admitted had Barack Obama's back on matters relating to Israel). J-Street also has connections to George Soros, is a foe of Israel's; has been linked to Hamas supporters; has Arab donors; and had a line-up of anti-Israel speakers scheduled for its first Washington conference.

Here is one Commentary magazine writer's view of the New America Foundation poll. Noah Pollak is the expert on J Street and he has critiqued J Street's polling methods before

The moral of the story? George Mitchell seems to be using a poll that should be viewed skeptically in order to give him leeway to pressure Israel to comply with American plans. Domestically, will the administration rely on this quite useful poll to justify its actions to American Jews? That strategy may have been presaged by Mitchell's views expressed during the Charlie Rose interview.

Clever...using a poll concocted by political allies to justify pressure on an ally.

Translation.  The "poll" is a concoction of leftists and self-hating Jews, being used by a middle east envoy who, despite his name, is half Lebanese and has never shown any particular affinity for the Jewish state.

That adds up to a pile of manure.  A pile of manure which is just fine for these people to shovel at us.  But it's not just fine for me.  How about you?

According to the exit polls, 78% of USA Jews voted for Barack Obama.  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 that I am not.


Ken Berwitz

Only Barack Obama would do this.

The President apparently will not travel to, Massachusetts to campaign for Martha Coakley.  But he made a video, presumably on her behalf.

The problem?  It is 2:04 minutes long, and he talks about himself for the first :55, before getting to Coakley.

Is there a bigger ego on the planet?


Ken Berwitz

What is the hottest video on youtube right now?

It just might be this one - with almost a half-million views in the couple of days it has been available:

"Well, with all due respect, it's not the Kennedy's seat and it's not the Democrats' seat.  It's the people's seat"

Is Martha Coakley in trouble?


Zeke ... ... An 'impartial' debate moderator uses highly partisan descriptions "Senate seat of Ted Kennedy", "another 15 years until health care is again considered", ... and gets his ass handed to him by Brown .... "It is not the Kennedy Seat, it is not the Democrat Seat .... It is the ** People's Seat ** . Way to go .... .... .... Libbrahals believe they can manipulate words to change reality: ... Teabagger, Birther, Warming Denier. ... ... ... Here's one for those who failed Semantics : ... Hypocrite. (01/14/10)


Ken Berwitz

Apropos of nothing.....

I just read an article that mentioned what was engraved on comedian Rodney Dangerfield's tombstone.  I couldn't believe it, so I checked at the invaluable site, - where you can find just about anyone's resting place, famous or otherwise.

And, y'know what?  The article was right:

Even in death....

No respect.



Ken Berwitz

We just received this email from J. B. Poersch, of the DSCC  (Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee):


Dear (NAME),



What you do in the next two minutes could mean the difference between keeping Ted Kennedy's seat blue, or ceding his seat to a tea-bag Republican.

Scott Brown has vowed to be the 41st vote to kill health care legislation and the rest of President Obama's agenda. We can't let him get anywhere near Kennedy's desk.

Election Day is five days away. We need Martha Coakley in the United States Senate, and she won't get there without your help.

Click here to donate $5 or more to the DSCC. Martha needs your help now to fight back against every attack and get every Democrat to the polls. Every dollar will make a difference on Tuesday!

A massive ad campaign, grassroots organizing - Democrats are doing everything we can to make sure that Kennedy's legacy doesn't end here. Martha Coakley is a fighter for Massachusetts as Attorney General and will be a fighter in the Senate. But the right wing is energized by the perceived opportunity to win this seat. Tea partiers and radical organizations are sending in money by the bucketful. To win, we must match their intensity and raise money just as aggressively.

Click here to donate $5 or more to the DSCC. Martha needs your help now to fight back against every attack and get every Democrat to the polls. Election Day is only five days away!

Now is the time. Now is our time. Let's do this for Senator Kennedy.


J.B. Poersch

Paid for by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee,,
and not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.

All you have to know about this email is in its first sentence, which:

-Calls the senate seat "Ted Kennedy's seat" as if it were owned by Kennedy and the Democrats instead of the people, and

-personally insults Republican candidate Scott Brown, by calling him a "tea-bag Republican".  As you probably know by now, to "tea bag" is to engage in an explicit sexual act involving a man's scrotum and someone's mouth.  To use as a descriptor of the opposition candidate is, frankly, odious and disgusting.  It is the equivalent of calling Martha Coakley a "fellatio Democrat".

But that's what the DSCC is reduced to.    

Not to worry, though, Mr. Poersch.  Our wonderful "neutral" media won't call you on it.  Heck, a lot of them are using the "tea-bag" term themselves.

But let's see how the voters of Massachusetts react next Tuesday.  That might be a different story.

Ken Berwitz Ok, you got me. I'm still laughing. By the way, your comment about David Gergen's, er, neutrality, was accidentally put under the Teddy Pendergrass blog. If you put it in the right place, I'll delete it from Pendergrass and the world will be in harmony (sort of). (01/14/10)

Zeke ... ... Accuracy in Politics time: ... ... Barney Frank is the Massachusetts Tea Bagger. (01/14/10)


Ken Berwitz
Teddy Pendergrass, one of the truly great R & B singers this country has ever produced, died of colon cancer today in Philadelphia.  He was just 59 years of age, and had been wheelchair-bound for the past 27 of those years due to a car crash in 1982.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Pendergrass, who sang with Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes before going solo, was the first Black male singer to ever record five consecutive multi-platinum albums. 
Though disabled by the car accident, Pendergrass continued to record through the 80's and 90's. 
He was a greatly talented singer who suffered for many years and had a too-short life.
May he rest in peace.


Ken Berwitz

Hee Haw.

Vice President Joe Biden, who the Obama adminstration has desperately tried to keep under wraps in recent months, is at it again.

This is excerpted from a Los Angeles Times blog written by Andrew Malcolm and Johanna Neuman.  The blue print is mine:

Everybody should just relax and take it easy.

Unsubstantiated rumors that Vice President Joe Biden had suddenly gone a little loopy and ordered some of his official meetings opened to at least cursory public or media attention were just that -- unsubstantiated rumors.

After a recent public sighting, fears had mounted that the one-time, long-term senator might rebel against traditional White House strictures and start acting on all the administration's oft-promised promises of government transparency and official openness running back into 2008.

But the VP's public schedule today puts all those fears to rest.

Here is the vice president's official schedule for today. Boldface was added in the interests of emphasis. Note especially that the vice president's meeting with the chairman of the Recovery Act Transparency and Accountability Board is closed, meaning non-transparent.

The "pool spray" mentioned has nothing to do with aquatics. It's a coded message to media that a few select members will be allowed in to take pictures briefly -- possibly for only a few seconds -- as Biden and his guest pretend to continue their previously private conversation as if the meeting was open.


In the morning, the President and the Vice President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing and the Economic Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. These briefings are closed press.

At 11:30 AM, the Vice President will meet with Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood to discuss the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. This meeting is closed press.

Afterwards, the President and the Vice President will have lunch in the Private Dining Room. This lunch is closed press.
At 1:00 PM, the Vice President will meet with Iraqi Vice President Adil Abd al-Mahdi in the Roosevelt Room. There will be a pool spray at the bottom of this meeting; gather time is 1:45 PM in the Brady Briefing Room.

Then, at 2:15 PM, the Vice President will meet with Earl Devaney, chairman of the Recovery Act Transparency and Accountability Board. This meeting is closed press.    ###


I love it.  His meeting with the transparency and accountability board is closed to the press, which means it can neither be transparent nor can anyone there be accountable.

That's our Joe.

Hee Haw.

Zeke ... .... * sigh * ... .... I never saw Palin as Presidential ... .... but she is head and shoulders above Biden. ... .... ... .... Obama is still a Chicago street-thug politician ... .... ... .... Where is Harry Truman, when the country needs him ? (01/14/10)


Ken Berwitz

The Hurt Locker is a war movie, set in 2004 Iraq.  It stars Jeremy Renner, Anthony Mackie and Brian Geraghty - none of whom I ever recall seeing before - along with small roles for several established stars:  Ralph Fiennes, David Morse and Guy Pearce.  Its title is taken from a poem written by Iraq war veteran Brian Turner.

It was released in mid-2009.  At that time, the only theater anywhere near us that was showing it was in Red Bank, New Jersey - and it was there for maybe a week, then gone. 

But it came out in video two days ago and my wife and I were lucky enough to get a copy.

This may well be the greatest war movie I have ever seen.  One that gives you a sense of what an actual war is like from a perspective that is rarely explored.

The scenes are gripping, emotional, breathtakingly real and unforgettable.  The acting is superlative. 

Director Kathryn Bigelow has not created an anti-war movie (other than the fact that, to me, any movie which shows the realities of war has a generic anti-war message).  Instead, she has put viewers into the streets and alleys of Iraq. without preaching or moralizing, and left us to experience the events and come to our own conclusions.  

The Hurt Locker is a true masterpiece.  I strongly urge you to see it.  You won't be the same afterwards.


Ken Berwitz

From my blog of October 26th, almost 3 months ago:

How much longer will they wait?  How many more rationalizations will they come up with?  When will the geniuses at NBC programming figure out that, as talented as Jay Leno may be and as desirable a late night personality as he was, his show is a bust in prime time?

Ok, that ends the gloating portion of the program.  Sorry.

As you almost certainly know, Jay Leno's 10PM show is being pulled, and will cease to exist after next month.

And Jeff Zucker-led NBC, exhibiting exactly the level of wisdom with which they fielded a Leno show in prime time, decided that they would move him to a half-hour format at 11:35PM, which (whether 11:30 or 11:35) has been when the Tonight show has started since before most of us were born.  Then, the "Tonight Show" (I'm putting that in quotations because, despite NBC's use of the name, it won't be the same show) becomes a half hour show starting at 12:05AM eastern.

The problem (among others)?  Conan O'Brien, who waited on NBC for SIX YEARS because they promised him the Tonight Show - the real one - doesn't want a half hour show starting after midnight on the east coast.  He wants what he was told he'd get - the actual Tonight Show.

Most of what I've read suggests that this is a clear breach of contract and that O'Brien can walk away from NBC.  I've also read that Fox, which would like a competitive late night show, is salivating at the possibility that they could lure him to their network. 

It seems pretty evident that, one way or another, this will play out in the next week or two.  It has to, given when Leno's show is being terminated.

Stay tuned.

Oh, one other thing:  Jeff Zucker and his underlings, aka the geniuses who gave you Leno at 10PM, and now want to screw over O'Brien, are the same geniuses who give you that wonderfully evenhanded lineup of hosts at MSNBC - all of whose ratings are fractions of what the Fox News Channel generates throughout prime time.  Just thought I'd mention.....

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