Thursday, 20 October 2011


Ken Berwitz

Evidently the reports are true.  moammar qaddafi is dead.

May he rot in hell.


Ken Berwitz

Excerpted from a Reuters article, published by the Jerusalem Post:

Freed would-be suicide bomber tells kids to be like her


GAZA - A would-be Palestinian suicide bomber freed by Israel in the prisoner swap for soldier Gilad Schalit told cheering schoolchildren in the Gaza Strip the day after her release on Wednesday she hoped they would follow her example.

"I hope you will walk the same path we took and God willing, we will see some of you as martyrs," Wafa al-Biss told dozens of children who came to her home in the northern Gaza Strip.


Biss was traveling to Beersheba's Soroka hospital for medical treatment in 2005 when Israeli soldiers at the Erez border crossing noticed she was walking strangely. They found 10 kilograms (22 lbs) of explosives had been sewn into her underwear.


A member of al-Aksa Martyrs Brigades, an offshoot of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah party, Biss was sentenced to a 12-year term for planning to blow herself up.

After she spoke, the children cheered and waved Palestinian flags and chanted: "We will give souls and blood to redeem the prisoners. We will give souls and blood for you, Palestine."

Biss said she had planned to blow herself up at the checkpoint but her detonator malfunctioned.


"Unfortunately, the button did not work at the last minute before I was to be martyred," Biss told Reuters.

These are the people the world demands that Israel negotiate a peace with.


Zeke ........... ......... “Prisoner releases only embolden terrorists. ... Worse, by leading terrorists to think such demands are likely to be met, they encourage precisely the terrorist blackmail they are supposed to defuse.” ................ ........... ........ Benjamin Netanyahyu, in his book "Fighting Terrorism" (1995) (10/20/11)


Ken Berwitz

This has nothing to do with politics, and everything to do with great coffee - which is far more enjoyable and, certainly in the mornings, is far more important.

In my (and my wife's, and most people we know's) opinion, Zabar's is the best appetizing and specialty food store in New York - which means, it is probably the best appetizing and specialty food store anywhere.  And their coffee, which they roast themselves, is about the best we have ever had.

There is nothing like the store itself, which located at 80th Street and Broadway on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.  But if you can't get there, they have a terrific web site to order from, often with special deals that make it even better.

This is the story of one of them.

On Monday, at about 10:45PM, I ordered Zabar's coffee on line. 

As noted above, Zabar's has just about the best coffee you can buy (in my opinion anyway).  In-store, the price for most of their varieties is only $7.98 per lb., ground to your taste.

When ordering online, the bad news is that they bump the price up $2, to $9.98 a lb.  But the good news is that if you order four pounds at a time, they don't charge any shipping.  And since I live outside of New York (less than an hour, but for tax purposes a miss is as good as a mile), I don't pay New York's 8.75% tax either.  So the total comes to $39.92. for the four pounds shipped to our door - about what I would have to pay for the coffee they sell in those plastic bins at the supermarket, which doesn't even begin to compare.

On Tuesday, however, I looked on the web site and saw that they were running a special deal.  If you bought the four pounds of coffee, they kicked in a half pound of their most popular blend, two pieces of rugelach (an absolutely delicious pastry), one of their signature coffee mugs, and a coffee scoop.

So I called up and told the very nice person on the other end of the phone that I missed the deal by less than an hour and a half, and would certainly have waited if I had known.  She gave me a bit of a fight.  But eventually "as a courtesy", she allowed me to get the deal along with my coffee.

How fast is the "free shipping"?  Well, it came today.  And when I opened the box, even before brewing any of it, the aroma alone put me in an advanced state of caffeinated orgasm.

Why am I mentioning this on a political blog?  No reason at all, other than I thought you might like to know.

Ok, back to politics.


Ken Berwitz Katz's Deli, which we used to call "Dirty Katz" when I was growing up (I'm pretty sure the cleanliness is better now) still has terrific stuff. The 2nd Avenue Deli closed some years ago, after its owner, Abe Lebewohl, was killed in front of the place (I don't think the killer was ever found, but could be wrong). However, just in the last year or two it has reopened further uptown. It used to be at 10th, but now it's in the upper 30's. (10/21/11)

Ken Berwitz free and zeke: My favorite is a mix of dark espresso and hazelnut. Although Zabar's does do a limited amount of mixed-coffee combinations for online purchase, this is not one of them. So when I get the order, I put all four pounds in a large bowl, mix it, and then back it goes into the packaging. free - You ordered that much? Now I feel better about finessing them out of the deal. Zeke - I agree. The second floor is a great source of cooking and specialty items. And their "restaurant" next door (no tables, just counters) is terrific as well. For $5.25 you get a bagel with cream cheese and their transcendentally great lox, orange juice and coffee. That is one of the best breakfast deals in New York - maybe the single best of all. (10/21/11)

Zeke ..... .... French / Italian Espresso ..... my very favorite for my espresso machine. ..... Grind the beans myself. .... ..... 2nd floor is wonderful for kitchen hardware. ..... .... (10/21/11)

Zeke ..... ..... Barney Greengrass (Amsterdam Ave @ 86th/87th St, NYC) is another restaurant mecca for smoked fish .... true NYC neighborhood place -- with decor circa LaGuardia administration. ..... I have heard that Zabar's and Russ & Daughters get their smoked fish from Acme Smoked Fish in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Acme sells retail ONLY on Fridays - 8am -1pm. (10/21/11)

free` Ken, We [my family, friends and I] love the cinnamon rugelach, Have you had the Chocolate Babka? It is excellent, as is everything they sell there. The shipping to California is high, so I only order stuff 3-4 times a year. I love the "Zabar's Is New York Box " Here is what comes in it - Zabar's Nova, plain cream cheese, New York fresh baked bagels, pastrami, Zabar's signature sourdough rye bread, Zabar's deli mustard, Zabar's Kosher Beef Salami, Zabar's mini potato knishes, Amaretti di Saronno cookies, chocolate babka, cinnamon rugelach, black & white cookies, a chocolate apple, a box of Chris' I love New York cookies, a bag of our favorite Betsy's Place chocolate chip cookies, a pound of fresh-roasted Zabar's ground coffee, a coffee scoop, Zabar's logo Coffee Mug and instructions for brewing the perfect cup of New York coffee. (10/20/11)

free` LOL, I just went and placed an order, they have the bobka on sale, it is half off. 22oz for $5.49. I didn't order the box deal, got 2 lbs each of corned beef and pastrami and the deli mustard. 1 rye bread. 2 lbs of lox, 18 bagels and cream cheese. The babka, rugelach and black and white cookies. Also got the free gift you mentioned, a half pound of their most popular blend, two pieces of rugelach (an absolutely delicious pastry), one of their signature coffee mugs, and a coffee scoop. Now i have 4 scoops, LOL :) (10/20/11)

free` Before we got our deli stuff delivered from Zabar's we also had Katz's Deli and before them it was 2nd Avenue Deli, but they either closed or stopped delivering out of state. (10/21/11)

free' An update, got my delivery and everything was there in one piece, but the coffee scoop is a cheapo plastic one, not the nice metal ones they have sent before. Bummer :/ (10/25/11)


Ken Berwitz

Hapless Harry Reid.  About the worst thing you can do to hurt this man is to quote him.

Here are his exact words, spoken yesterday on the floor of the senate:

The massive layoffs weve had in America today have, of course, theyre rooted again in the last administration.  And its very clear, that private sector jobs have been doing just fine.  Its the public sector jobs where weve lost huge numbers.  And thats what this legislation is all about.  And its unfortunate my friend, the Republican leader, is complaining about that

Let's try to parse this:

-It is now almost three years since George Bush was President, and almost five years since Republicans lost control of both houses of congress to the Democrats (Republicans took back the house this year, but the senate and Presidency still are on the Democrat side).  The only people who believe "the massive layoffs we've had in America today" are Bush's fault are the hopelessly partisan, and the hopelessly ignorant.  Which certainly means Mr. Reid was playing to his core audience;

-It is very clear that private sector jobs are doing fine?  Then how come there are 2.5 million less of them since President Obama took office?

-It's the public sector jobs where we've lost huge numbers?  Then how come federal employees alone are up 13.5% since Mr. Obama became President? 

-That's what this legislation is all about?  Then, as my mother used to say (maybe she still does, I'll ask her) the legislation is bass ackwards.

-It's unforunate the Republican leader is complaining about that?  No, Harry, it is fortunate that one of you two are working on more than a half-cylinder.

Omigod.  This man is senate majority leader.  He is not only one of only 100 senators, but he is in charge of the majority in that body.

We're in more trouble than we thought we were.

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