Monday, 21 October 2013


Ken Berwitz

Apropos of nothing political, here, from Tayler Bigler's blog at, is a four year old boy who, while cavorting in his bathtub, manages to recite Jack Nicholson's electrifying speech from "A Few Good Men" word for word.

Yes, he has a bit of trouble pronouncing a few words.  Yes, he pulls at his nose (but, thankfully, doesn't pull anything out of it).  And yes, about a minute after telling us "you can't handle the troof", he seems to be doing a little handling of his own, which mom's judicious use of camera angles spares us.  But, all in all, quite a performance.

Take that, Tom Cruise!!!!

Oh, one other thing.  Before you even click on the video, doesn't that soap dish behind him make it look like he has devil's horns?  Just asking......

Ok, back to politics, where between the spending and taxing, we all are taking a bath.


Ken Berwitz

Today's Quote Of The Day comes with a tip of my (non-existent but figurative) hat to Jeff Dunetz who writes, among other places at the web site.

Jeff has posted a quote from Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne, about the Tea Party.  Yesterday, on Meet The Press, here is what Mr. Dionne had to say:

"I think that the era of the far right and the era of the Tea Party is over. We wasted $12-24 billion of GDP on a political tactic that was designed to win by intimidation. We have an opening for normal government for the first time since the 2010 elections"

Why would this vie for Quote Of The Day status?  Let's see: 

-No one knows what the cost to the GDP - if any at all - had a thing to do with the shutdown battle;

-If there was a loss it was the result of a dispute between the two parties, not the exclusive responsibility of either one;

-The Republican "intimidation" Dionne refers to was first attempting to defund (which was, of course, quixotic in nature, and meant to be a starting point), but quickly morphed into a demand that the program be delayed so that its problems could be addressed, then a demand for significant changes, then a demand for moderate changes, then a demand for minor changes.  And as the E.J. Dionnes of the world continued to blame Republicans, it was Barack Obama and his fellow Democrats who refused to budge one inch at any step of the way. 

In fact, the only "intimidation" here was the intimidation visited upon Republicans who tried to hold off ObamaCare and were absolutely skewered by Dionne and his pals for it.  As I showed in a blog last Thursday, from September 17 to October 15th, network news did 62 stories which blamed one or the other of the two parties.  EVERY ONE of them, without exception, blamed Republicans.  The fact that this was a dispute in which two sides disagreed?  Nonexistent to these supposedly "neutral' venues.

-And don't you love his ending about "normal government"?  Until the 2010 elections, Democrats ran every part of the federal government:  60% of the house, 60% of the Senate and the Presidency.  That, to E.J. Dionne was "normal".  When Republicans won a house majority, so both parties had a say?  That, evidently was an abnormalcy to him.   

How can you reason with a thought process like this one?  Beats me.

So am I awarding Quote Of The Day honors to E.J. Dionne because he made such a supersedingly ridiculous comment?  In part, the answer is yes.  But there is a little more.

See, Jeff Dunetz's blog also uncovered a quote from Mr. Dionne's Washington Post column of April 19th, 2010, in which he said:

The Tea Party is nothing new. It represents a relatively small minority of Americans on the right end of politics, and it will not determine the outcome of the 2010 elections.

In fact, both major parties stand to lose if they accept the laughable notion that this media-created protest movement is the voice of true populism. Democrats will spend their time chasing votes they will never win. Republicans will turn their party into an angry and narrow redoubt with no hope of building a durable majority. 

FYI:  In that election, Republicans gained an astonishing 63 house seats (the largest gain for one party in 62 years), 6 senate seats, 5 Governorships and almost 700 seats in state of the biggest jumps forward for a party in U. S. history.

With this in mind, E.J. Dionne wins Quote Of The Day honors not just for his ridiculous prediction yesterday, but for his chutzpah in making that prediction after his previous Tea Party prediction was so completely wrong.

Congratulations, E.J.   I think.....


Ken Berwitz

This morning, CNN has released a poll, conducted by a very credible organizaion (Opinion Research Company) with a series of very reasonably-worded questions.  And, as I write this, its web site's lead story is CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauer's analysis of its findings.

The headline?  "GOP, Boehner take shutdown hit in new CNN poll"

So, without even having to read the findings, what do you "know"?  You "know" that, the story is how badly Republicans are seen by the public because of their actions during the 17 day shutdown battle, and that House Majority Leader John Boehner is the guy they blame most.  

But if you read on, here are the first three paragraphs:

Washington (CNN) -- Just more than half the public says that it's bad for the country that the GOP controls the House of Representatives, according to a new national poll conducted after the end of the partial government shutdown.

And the CNN/ORC International survey also indicates that more than six in 10 Americans say that Speaker of the House John Boehner should be replaced.

The poll was conducted Friday through Sunday, just after the end of the 16-day partial federal government shutdown that was caused in part by a push by House conservatives to try and dismantle the health care law, which is President Barack Obama's signature domestic achievement.

Now you have the specifics to prove that headline is true.  What else do you need?


Here is what else is in the poll, some of which is buried far into the body of the article -nowhere near the headline and initial paragraphs - and some of which is not mentioned at all:

-Barack Obama, who refused to negotiate on any part of health care legislation, has an approval level of 44% - the lowest this poll has shown in two years, and just 1% off the lowest level it has ever shown for him;

-While respondents have more confidence in President Obama than Republicans to handle the the major issues facing the country today, this latest poll is an improvement for Republicans, not a setback.  The last time it was asked, a year ago, 49% had more confidence in Mr. Obama versus 31% for Republicans.  Now it is 44% - 31%.  In other words, Republicans did not drop, President Obama did.

-As amazingly low as the approval level for congress is in this poll - 12% - it is actually higher than the 10% this poll's previous wave showed in late September, just before the shutdown.  Let's also remember that congress is not just the House of Representatives, it is the Senate too...and this question does not address whether respondents realize as much, or which part of congress they blame more.

-And, yes, after weeks of saturation-bombing of the Republican position on the shutdown, a lot more people than in the previous wave say it is bad that Republicans control the House of Representatives.  But - funny thing here - the obvious next question, whether it is good or bad for Democrats to control the Senate, was not asked at all.  See, if those numbers went down too, it would indicate that the public is disgusted not specifically with Republicans but with congress as a whole. Why do you suppose that question was somehow left out?

-Finally, when asked whether they favor or oppose ObamaCare, a majority (56%) oppose it - which certainly suggests that they are amenable either to scrapping it entirely or making changes...which is what Republicans were proposing and President Obama was adamantly refusing to do.

So what does this poll really show?  It shows that respondents were unhappy with the government shutdown and were particularly unhappy with how Republicans fought against it -- but don't want ObamaCare in its current form and don't like the way President Obama is handling it either. 

We can only wonder how these data would have come out if, during the 2 1/2 week shutdown, media had occasionally reminded the public that President Obama's calling in Republicans to discuss the issue was not an effort to find a middle ground, but to reaffirm that he wasn't going to give an inch on anything.  Do you think the poll numbers might be better for Republicans and worse for Mr. Obama and his fellow Democrats, if Mr. Obama's intransigence were as publicized as the Ted Cruzifixion?  Me too.

Media spin:  This is how they do it.


Ken Berwitz

This quote is straight from the mouth of President Obama today:

"...About three weeks ago, as the federal government shut down the Affordable Care Act's health insurance marketplaces opened up across the country.  Well, we've now gotten the government back open for the American people and today I want to talk about how we're going to get the marketplaces running at full steam as well...."

I know it is hard to believe that the President of the United States would suggest, without saying it in so many words (i.e. the weaselly way) that the ObamaCare web site's incredibly disastrous start has a thing to do with the government shutdown.  So here, from Ed Morrissey's blog at, is the video:

Got that?  Three years and $634 million dollars put into the ObamaCare launch, it turns out to be a cataclysmic disaster, and the reason is.....a government shutdown which didn't even start until day ObamaCare launched, thus could not possibly have had a thing to do with how it was put together.

Why would Barack Obama lie this overtly to us?  The best I can come up with is that he is so used to lying to our faces and being backed up by the members of his Acccomplice Media, happy to run cover for him, that he figures he can say just about anything and the people he has been boob-baiting for five years will allow themselves to be made fools of again, just like all the other times.

Pathetic?  At least.

Zeke ......... ......... It's all Bush's fault ......... .......... ......... How to solve the national debt crisis: Sell tickets to a live performance of Obama and Willie Clinton --- who can tell the biggest lie . . .. . . . .. .. . . . . (10/21/13)


Ken Berwitz

As I assume most of you are aware, Republicans have split over whether they should demand a complete defunding of ObamaCare or that significant changes be made to how it would be run.

As most of you are also aware, for over a month the Democrat Party has been in full attack mode against Republicans for daring to do so - with an especially vile series of attacks directed specifically against Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), the leading proponent of complete ObamaCare defunding.

Last Thursday I put up a bunch of vile epithets about Republicans - Cruz and others - made by high-ranking members of the Democrat Party during the government shutdown period.   I then asked four questions, all of which I think are important, but especially the last one:

-Do these comments count as Democrat civility?

-Aren't these comments a lot worse than the Sarah Palin "crosshairs" map which Democrats claimed to be responsible for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords being shot - though there was no evidence that the shooter, jared lee loughner, had ever seen it?

-Where are the media attacks on Democrats making these comments?  Did we not see massive media attacks on Ms. Palin for the "crosshairs" map - though both Democrats and Republicans have put out similar materials for many years?

-If one or another of these comments drives someone over the edge and a Republican congressperson is attacked and injured, or worse, who will media blame?

Regarding that last question, please read the following excerpt from Patrick Howley's article at  WARNING:  This contains extremely graphic language:

The man under FBI investigation for making violent threats against Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz was inspired to encourage violence by Democratic Party messaging efforts.

Troy Gilmore, Jr., who identifies himself as having served in the U.S. Navy, is under FBI investigation for possible violent threats on Twitter against Republican senator Cruz.

Gilmore wrote numerous threats toward Cruz on his Facebook page, the address of which ends with the term "countdown543," while linking to anti-Republican activist web pages paid for by the Democratic National Committee, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and a Democratic congressional campaign.

"I WILL SAY IT AGAIN LETS GO TO TED CRUZ,HOME AND KICK HIS STINKING ASS FOR CAUSING THIS MESS.YOU CAN BET HE HAS HIS PAYCHECK AND HEALTH BENEFITS FROM THE SENATE AND CANADA. HE LIVES AT [address redacted by The Daily Caller], THE FUCKING SCUM," Gilmore posted on Facebook October 14, linking to a Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee web page entitled "Demand Ted Cruz Denounce Disgusting Tea Party Attacks on President Obama."

"Show up at Ted Cruz's home he is the dirt bag fucker who caused all of this shit to take place.Lets drag him out hid damn home and kick his ass [address redacted by The Daily Caller].The damn scum bag of a U.S.Senator,from the sorry ass state that hates women,and to think this Pussy is married to one," Gilmore posted to Facebook October 14, linking to a petition to House Republicans paid for by the campaign of Democratic Rep. Brad Schneider.

That, folks, is not some obscure non-connection to a year-old flyer troy gilmore jr. might or might not have seen.  Those are his threats, in his words, with a direct link to Democrat sites and Democrat literature.

So I'm asking now, as I did in the fourth question above:  who will media blame?

And I can also give you an answer of sorts:  Media are blaming.........nobody. 

Why do I say this?  Because if you google "Ted Cruz stalker", and look at the first three full pages as I did, you will not find even one mainstream media article about it.  Zero.  Zip.  Nada. 

A US Senator is specifically is threatened, the person doing the threatening directly ties his threat to literature put out by the Democrat Party - whose leadership has called Ted Cruz every name in the book - and the media are burying it. 

It is possible, I suppose, that someone might be able to come up with a more despicable example of how low media in this country have sunk than this one; how much further down the partisan road they have gone. 

If you have such an example, please tell me about it.  Because I can't think of a single one.

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