Monday, 15 November 2010


Ken Berwitz

Excerpted from Melissa Klein's article in yesterday's New York Post:

Congressman Charles Rangel, whose ethics trial starts tomorrow, appears to have improperly used political-action committee money to pay for his defense.

Rangel tapped his National Leadership PAC for $293,000 to pay his main legal-defense team this year. He took another $100,000 from the PAC in 2009 to pay lawyer Lanny Davis.

Two legal experts told The Post such spending is against House rules.

"It's a breach of congressional ethics," one campaign-finance lawyer said.

Washington, DC, political lawyer Cleta Mitchell said there is "no authority for a member to use leadership PAC funds as a slush fund to pay for personal or official expenses."

What a thoroughly corrupt sleazebag. 

Oh, by the way, rangel, who fired his lawyers weeks ago and was told several times about the procedure for replacing them, walked out on his ethics hearings this morning.....because he claimed he was not given time to find a new lawyer.

How bad does charles rangel stink?  He's in DC, I'm in New Jersey, and I can smell him from here.


Ken Berwitz




Ken Berwitz

All of a sudden, if you want to fly you have to either be subjected to a scanner that essentially gives "security people" (who are these people?) a look at your nude body, or a rubdown of that body, private parts included.

Does this trouble you?  I hope so.

Here are excerpts from Robert J. Hawkins' article about John Tyner, who wanted nothing other than to take an uneventful plane flight.  Put yourself in his position and think about how you would have reacted:

TSA ejects Oceanside man from airport for refusing security check

Read John Tyner's blog.

Listen to the audio of John Tyner's encounter with the TSA.

SAN DIEGO John Tyner won't be pheasant hunting in South Dakota with his father-in-law any time soon.

Tyner was simultaneously thrown out of San Diego International Airport on Saturday morning for refusing to submit to a security check and threatened with a civil suit and $10,000 fine if he left.

And he got the whole thing on his cell phone. Well, the audio at least.

The 31-year-old Oceanside software programmer was supposed to leave from Lindbergh Field on Saturday morning and until a TSA agent directed him toward one of the recently installed full-body scanners, Tyner seemed to be on his way.

Tyner balked.

He also did something that may seem odd to some, manipulative to others but fortuitous to plenty of others for whom Tyner is becoming something of a folk hero: Tyner turned on his cell phone's video camera and placed it atop the luggage he sent through the x-ray machine.

He may not be the first traveler tossed from an airport for security reasons but he could well be the first to have the whole experience captured on his cell phone.

During the next half-hour, his cell phone recorded Tyner refusing to submit to a full body scan, opting for the traditional metal scanner and a basic "pat down" -- and then refusing to submit to a "groin check" by a TSA security guard.

He even told the guard, "You touch my junk and I'm going to have you arrested."

That threat triggered a code red of sorts as TSA agents, supervisors and eventually the local police gravitated to the spot where the reluctant traveler stood in his stocking feet, his cell phone sitting in the nearby bin (which he wasn't allowed to touch) picking up the audio.

According to TSA at the time the controversial body scanners were installed, travelers would have the option to request walking through the traditional metal detector but that option would be accompanied by a "pat down."

Why Tyner was targeted for a secondary pat down is unknown.

He did marvel that while his own situation was being deliberated, many passengers passed through the metal detector and on to their flights with no pat-down. "One guy even set off the alarm and they sent him through again without a pat-down," he said.

Once he threatened to have the TSA agent arrested though, events turned surreal.

A supervisor is heard re-explaining the groin check process to Tyner then adding "If you're not comfortable with that, we can escort you back out and you don't have to fly today."

Tyner responded "OK, I don't understand how a sexual assault can be made a condition of my flying."

"This is not considered a sexual assault," replied the supervisor, calmly.

"It would be if you were not the government," said Tyner.

Two hours later he wrote the whole experience up on his blog and posted the audio files to YouTube.

You could say it has gone viral.

By Saturday evening, 70,000 people had accessed the entry and 488 comments were posted to the blog item. Those comments are divided over Tyner's experience. "Only 5 percent say I'm an idiot," he said.

Far more applaud him for "standing up" to the security forces. Many more people share his disdain for how airport security is conducted.

"People generally are angry about what is going on," said Tyner, "but they don't know how to assert their rights....there is a general feeling that TSA is ineffective, out of control, over-reaching."

Is this really what we've been reduced to?

Does anyone doubt that our enemies are already figuring out - probably already have figured out - how to get around this so-called security measure?

Does anyone doubt that a good looking woman is going to generate more visual screening, and wiseacre comments, than other passengers?  How about passengers who are especially fat or thin?  How about passengers with significant physical disabilities?  Will they turn into sideshows for scanners, who find them "fun" to look at and comment to each other about?   

And who is performing these screenings?  Are these security experts?  Or are they barely (bad pun there) trained basic everyday workers, with little more than a smattering of security training?  Do they have any serious qualifications to be in charge of looking at body scans?  I honestly don't know the answer.  Do you? 

Repeated from an earlier blog:

Israel is despised by much - make that most - of the world, including every one of its neighbors (even Egypt and Jordan, with which it has "peace" agreements).  Untold millions of Israel/Jew haters want the country and its population - its Jewish population, that is - annihilated.  Yet, even though Israel is not subjecting its airline passengers to the half-baked reactionary procedures now being inflicted on us, it has been decades since an Israeli airplane was hijacked or blown up. 

That being the case, why aren't we working intensely with Israel to learn, and implement, the procedures it utilizes - the ones which have resulted in providing its air passengers safe travel?

What are we afraid of?  Success? 

Or does looking at nude images of every passenger make more sense.

free` why aren't we working intensely with Israel to learn, and implement, the procedures it utilizes... ---------- Because of our PC culture run amok, we aren't allowed to profile people. (11/15/10)

Zeke ..... ..... A lifetime of full body X-Rays just might be cancer causing. ..... ..... Avoid these risks as well as demeaning searches and pat-downs. .... .... Fly All-Nude Airlines ..... the FUN Airline. ... .... .... or take Obama's new High Speed Train .... ...... (11/15/10)


Ken Berwitz

Weeks ago I wrote a blog, titled "Putting the Con in Connecticut", which contained information that would lead a reasonable person to at least suspect the state's gubernatorial election results were being cooked in the city of Bridgeport.

Well, here, excerpted from Peter Raymond's article at is an even clearer indication that this is exactly what happened.  Please pay special attention to the part I've put in bold print:

Since 1928, Democrat gubernatorial candidates in Connecticut received the majority of votes in all but four general elections. It is interesting to note that a Socialist Party candidate received more votes than either the Democrat or Republican in 1938, and a Socialist held the mayor's office for 24 years until 1957, when he lost the election as "a consequence" of his "conservatism." With this voting record, it should come as no surprise that the Democrat won a majority in this election. 


However, the off-the-cliff drop in the number of votes cast for the Republican candidate this election when compared to previous elections is puzzling. Just 4,099 votes were cast for the Republican, which is by far the lowest number all the way back to 1922. Furthermore, it is a 32% plunge from the previous low of 6,094 votes in 2002 and an astounding 51% drop from the 8,366 votes in the last gubernatorial election in 2006.


When compared with the ten previous elections, the results of this one reveal an even greater deviation. Republican gubernatorial candidates averaged 11,449 votes, so that means that in this election, there was a jaw-dropping difference of 64% from the ten-year average. 


Meanwhile, the Democrat candidate benefited from a 59.5% jump in votes from the last election and a 6% increase above the ten-year average.  

Democrat Dan Malloy beat Republican Tom Foley by a minuscule 7,762 votes. 

Bridgeport's vote totals showed a sudden, magical, mystical jump in Democratic votes, coupled with a sudden, magical, mystical drop in Republican votes which more than accounted for that difference.  Without it, Tom Foley would have won.

Can I prove there was voter fraud in Bridgeport?  No I cannot  -- any more than I can prove that the back of the moon isn't made of green cheese.

But you can bet that I have my conclusions about went on there.  And I know damn well the back of the moon isn't made of green cheese. 


Ken Berwitz

"He's the only man I know who can strut sitting down":  E. K. Hornbeck talking about Matthew Harrison Brady in Inherit the Wind

I am listening (I can't watch, I'm typing, and it's just as well) to keith olbermann in full whine.

Olbermann is inflicting a "special comment" on his audience in which, during his standard attack on Fox and Republicans and conservatives and the right, he is lecturing Ted Koppel on how to report news.

Look, Ted Koppel is far from my favorite.  But keith olbermann lecturing Mr. Koppel on how to report news is like Lady Gaga lecturing Queen Elizabeth on how to dress tastefully.

This man is to hubris what sand is to the Gobi Desert.  And, as an extra added attraction, he is transcendentally boring.

When someone thinks he is a linear descendant of Edward R. Murrow, but actually sounds more like W. C. Fields in The Bank Dick, there is a bit of a problem.

I am happy to report, however, that this is a problem MSNBC and Comcast will have to deal with, not us. 

Aren't we the lucky ones?


REVISION:  I've had second thoughts about comparing keith olbermann to W.C. Fields in The Bank Dick.  Actually, he's a lot more like W. C. Fields in You Can't Cheat An Honest Man, where he played a character named Larson E. Whipsnade.


Ken Berwitz

From my sister, about one minute ago:

this is REAL!

checked it out on Snopes


If you get an email titled "Nude photo of Nancy Pelosi" don't open it.

It contains a nude photo of Nancy Pelosi. 




Ken Berwitz

Just how hard is it to abide keith olbermann? 

Keep in mind that I'm not asking this question about olbermann's enemies.  I am asking it about his colleagues at MSNBC - a place where his show, though hopelessly outmatched in viewership by Bill O'Reilly, is generating the best ratings that network gets in prime time.

The following excerpt from Howard Kurtz's telling article at should give you a pretty good idea:

MSNBCs president vowed to fire Keith Olbermann after he threatened to take his case to other networks. Howard Kurtz on the civil war that has NBC brassand his own stafffuming.


Keith Olbermann was having dinner with his manager at an Upper East Side restaurant, chewing over their battle to lift his suspension at MSNBC, when Phil Griffin called.   


Michael Price stepped out of the Atlantic Grill to talk to MSNBCs president, leaving his client with a platter of 18 oysters. It was Sunday, Nov. 7, and Price informed Griffin that if they couldnt resolve their differences quickly, Olbermann would take his complaints public by accepting invitations from Good Morning America, David Letterman, and Larry King


Why are you putting us in the position where youre daring us to do this? Price demanded, his voice rising.   


If you go on GMA, I will fire Keith, Griffin shot back. Such a move was clearly grounds for dismissal.   

The manager returned to the restaurant. He and Olbermann, who had been pushing hard to end the suspension the next day, discussed whether they would be burning bridges by carrying out the threat. Minutes later, their phones buzzed with emails from reporters, asking about a statement that NBC had just released. Olbermann, it said, would be allowed to return to his prime-time show on Tuesdaya day later than he had wanted.   


Price called Griffin again. What compelled you to do that in that way? he asked.  


We are at war, Griffin responded.    


If so, it was a war that had spread beyond the principal combatants to many of the journalists who work at NBC and MSNBC. From the moment Olbermann was found to have donated money to three Democratic candidates, there has been a deepening sense of anger and frustration among his colleagues, according to interviews with eight knowledgeable sources. These sources, who declined to be quoted by name because of the sensitivity of the situation, say that several of NBCs front-line stars, including Tom Brokaw, have expressed concern to management that Olbermann has badly damaged MSNBCs reputation for independence.  (NBC and MSNBC executives declined to comment, and Olbermann declined to be interviewed.)


Network staffers use phrases like scorched-earth policy and totally narcissistic response to describe how Olbermann has dealt with criticism of his political donations. A recurring theme is that he has made it impossible for MSNBC to argue that it is journalistically different from Fox News, which has no prohibition against political donations by such commentators and talk-show hosts as Sean Hannity and Karl Rove. The word hypocrisy has frequently been aimed at Olbermann.


As mentioned above, compared to its other prime time programming keith olberman is a ratings winner for MSNBC.  But look at the amount of baggage his presence on the network brings along for the ride. 

Howard Kurtz's article, along with a steady stream of other articles and commenaries over the years, makes it pretty clear that just about no one who has any dealings with olberman can stand him. 

Plus, look at the cost of maintaining that viewership.  olbermann's show seals the lid on MSNBC as an unregenerately hard-left media venue.  A network that features olbermann (not to mention Schultz, and Maddow and O'Donnell and Matthews) cannot credibly claim any vestige of neutrality. 

Compared to keith olbermann-led MSNBC,  Fox - which the MSNBC crew ongoingly accuses of bias - is the picture of evenhandedness.

Personally, I think of olbermann's ratings very much the way I thought of segregationist george wallace's vote total when he ran for President in 1968. 

wallace won about 14% of the total vote, and the 46 electoral votes of five deep-south states.  But because he was such a far-right, polarizing figure who generated extremely loyal supporters and extremely negative detractors, he got just about every vote he could get, and had almost no additional upside.  I estimated that his maximum possible vote was maybe 15-16%, and his minimum at about 11% - 12%.

To me, olbermann is in exactly the same boat.  His supporters tend to love him to pieces and his detractors tend to hate his guts.  So there is relatively little room to rise or fall.  Therefore his ratings, which have gradually migrated to their current level over a period of years, are probably at or near both his maximum and his minimum.

Comcast will soon be taking over MSNBC.  I don't have any contacts at that company, but every square inch of my not inconsiderable gut tells me it would love to be rid of the media mestastasis named keith olbermann before the changeover takes place.

It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

WisOldMan This orchestrated-drama from MSNBC serves no purpose, but taken in context, it does give the network something to do... ...afterall, it's not as if the folks in Manhattan are all of a sudden going to get serious about journalism. (11/17/10)


Ken Berwitz

Collaborate:  to cooperate with or willingly assist an enemy of one's country and especially an occupying force: 

Let's start at the end.  The answer to the question in that title is no.  Glenn Beck is not an anti-Semite.  He is anything but an anti-Semite.  And, which makes this claim, is full of excrement.

Let me also point out that, as regular readers know, this is not a defense of "my guy".  I am not a fan of Glenn Beck's and, other than checking in now and again to see if anything has changed (just as I do with Ed Schultz), I don't watch his show.

Now the facts.

First, here is the excerpted version of mediamatters' claim, written by Matt Gertz, which you can read in its entirety by clicking here:

The New York Times is reporting that Fox News is standing by Glenn Beck following his smears of Jewish philanthropist George Soros as a Holocaust collaborator. Beck's attacks have been condemned by Jewish advocacy organizations, including the Anti-Defamation League.

Over the past few days, Beck has used his Fox News show to falsely claim that when Soros was 14, after the Nazis invaded his native Hungary, "he had to help the government confiscate the lands of his fellow Jewish friends and neighbors," adding that Soros had said he felt no guilt for his supposed actions.

In fact, as we've repeatedly documented, Soros has said that he felt no guilt about his actions because he "had no role in taking away that property." 

After Beck used his radio show on Wednesday to accuse Soros of having helped "send the Jews" to "death camps," prominent Jewish leaders and Holocaust survivors condemned Beck's smears, with Anti-Defamation League national director Abraham H. Foxman calling them "completely inappropriate, offensive and over the top," as well as "unacceptable" and "horrific."

Nonetheless, Fox News reportedly continues to support Beck

Now let's look at a transcript of the December 20th, 1998 interview of soros, conducted by Steve Kroft of 60 Minutes, which I pulled from  Please pay special attention to the part I have put in bold print:

KROFT: (Voiceover) You're a Hungarian Jew...

Mr. SOROS: (Voiceover) Mm-hmm.

KROFT: (Voiceover) ...who escaped the Holocaust...

(Vintage footage of women walking by train)

Mr. SOROS: (Voiceover) Mm-hmm.

(Vintage footage of people getting on train)

KROFT: (Voiceover) ... by -- by posing as a Christian.

Mr. SOROS: (Voiceover) Right.

(Vintage footage of women helping each other get on train; train door closing with people in boxcar)

KROFT: (Voiceover) And you watched lots of people get shipped off to the death camps.

Mr. SOROS: Right. I was 14 years old. And I would say that that's when my character was made.

KROFT: In what way?

Mr. SOROS: That one should think ahead. One should understand and -- and anticipate events and when -- when one is threatened. It was a tremendous threat of evil. I mean, it was a -- a very personal experience of evil.

KROFT: My understanding is that you went out with this protector of yours who swore that you were his adopted godson.

Mr. SOROS: Yes. Yes.

KROFT: Went out, in fact, and helped in the confiscation of property from the Jews.

Mr. SOROS: Yes. That's right. Yes.

KROFT: I mean, that's -- that sounds like an experience that would send lots of people to the psychiatric couch for many, many years. Was it difficult?

Mr. SOROS: Not -- not at all. Not at all. Maybe as a child you don't -- you don't see the connection. But it was -- it created no -- no problem at all.

KROFT: No feeling of guilt?

Mr. SOROS: No.

KROFT: For example that, 'I'm Jewish and here I am, watching these people go. I could just as easily be there. I should be there.' None of that?

Mr. SOROS: Well, of course I c -- I could be on the other side or I could be the one from whom the thing is being taken away. But there was no sense that I shouldn't be there, because that was -- well, actually, in a funny way, it's just like in markets -- that if I weren't there -- of course, I wasn't doing it, but somebody else would -- would -- would be taking it away anyhow. And it was the -- whether I was there or not, I was only a spectator, the property was being taken away. So the -- I had no role in taking away that property. So I had no sense of guilt.

At the age of 14 - and a very mature 14 it had to be given his undeniably high intelligence level, analytical capabilities, and what he had already experienced - soros had no problem helping to confiscate belongings from his fellow Jews.  Jews who he knew were going to be shipped to concentration camps where they would most likely die.

Was it difficult?  "It created no -- no problem at all". 

No feeling of guilt?  "No".

" a funny way it's just like in markets -- that if I weren't there -- of course, I wasn't doing it, but somebody else would -- would -- would be taking it away anyhow.

Got that?  No problem.  No feeling of guilt.  Hey, if it weren't me it would have been someone else -- the same argument a thief could make if he was caught stealing money from a cash register that someone accidentally left open.

The bottom line:  mediamatters, ever vigilant to attack its many, many bogeymen on the right, with special attention to Fox and Glenn Beck, has convinced itself that when soros helped to confiscate property from Jews with complete ease and no guilt whatsoever, he was not collaborating with them.

Does that make any sense to you?  If so, stop reading and immediately bookmark the mediamatters web site.  They are your kind of people.


Ken Berwitz

Did you have any doubt that the Obama administration would waive the legislative monstrosity known as "ObamaCare" for lots and lots of favored entities, while leaving the rest of us stuck with it?

Excerpted from Michelle Malkin's latest column:

Let us briefly review the rapidly growing rolls of companies, unions, and states bursting out of the Obamacare escape hatch.


In early September, I noted the push by Obamacare promoter and Democrat Rep. Ron Wyden for a special state waiver from the very federal mandate he advocated for everyone else.


A few weeks later, McDonalds finagled its own Obamacare waiver after warning federal regulators that it could be forced to drop its affordable health insurance plan for nearly 30,000 restaurant workers unless it got a pass.


In early October, the Obama administration announced it had granted waivers not only to McDonalds, but also to several other firms and labor unions.


Now comes word that Torquemada HHS Secretay Kathleen Sebelius has approved a whopping 111 waivers for businesses of all sizes, along with more unions and other providers of health insurance.

Can this administration be more corrupt? 

Can it more blatantly play favorites?

Can we move the 2012 elections up?  Please?


Ken Berwitz

If "he who laughs last laughs best", then what is it when "she who laughs last laughs best two different times in 24 hours"?

Yesterday, as reported by Brian Stelter at

Sarah Palins family-reality-show-slash-travelogue, Sarah Palins Alaska, began on Sunday night before almost five million viewers on TLC.

TLC said it was the biggest premiere in the channels history.

And today, from the Anchorage Daily News:

"Refudiate," Sarah Palin's widely ridiculed mashup of "repudiate" and "refute" -- though she was far from the first to use the word -- has been named 2010 Word of the Year by the staff of the New Oxford American Dictionary.

From a strictly lexical interpretation of the different contexts in which Palin has used "refudiate," we have concluded that neither "refute" nor "repudiate" seems consistently precise, and that "refudiate" more or less stands on its own, suggesting a general sense of "reject."

How it must have pained the ADN to report this, since it has been a serial detractor of Ms. Palin's for years - enough so that it assured us Ms. Palin did not invent "refudiate", and then quoted some Texas based entity called the "Global Language Monitor", (I've never heard of it.  Have you?) which called it one of the ten worst words of the year. 

And how it must be sticking in the craws of the assorted other media elites who have made it their mission in life to defecate on Sarah Palin every day in every way they can think of.

But things are as they are.  And, despite the figurative (maybe even literal) gnashing of teeth and throwing of ash trays by this bunch, I have a feeling that Ms. Palin is doing a lot of laughing right now.  All the way to the bank.

Zeke .... .... The Republicans are showing some serious talent: Sarah Palin would be an excellent Secretary of the Interior. She's faced many of these issues as Governor. .... ... Rudi Giuliani for Secretary of DHS (if he can bear giving up the top slot). .... .... Jim DeMint of SC has taken a number of very strong positions ..... ...... .... The days of McCain, Dole are over. (11/15/10)

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!!