July 2011 Archives

Good catch

David Gerstman catches the NY Times loading the dice and then editing out its own material in order to promote a more anti-Israel slant.  (Shocking, I know.)

Read it at Pajamas Media.

Glenn Beck, Norway victims, Hitler Youth and the JTA

JTA, the self-styled "Global News Service of the Jewish People," is spreading this article around.  The headline: Beck likens Norway victims to Hitler Youth !

NEW YORK (JTA) -- Talk-show host Glenn Beck on his syndicated radio show likened the victims of the shooting at a Norwegian summer camp to young members of the Nazi Party.

In a seven-minute segment Monday morning on the Premiere Radio Network's "The Glenn Beck Program," Beck described the attack "as a shooting at a political camp, which sounds a little like the Hitler Youth. I mean who sends their kids to a political camp?"

Yes, Glenn Beck said that.  Just one of several mind-numbingly stupid and inappropriate comments he's allowed to slip out in the course of his stream of consciousness radio and TV rants.  But it's curious that JTA extracted this particular headline (which smacks of sensationalism and twists what Beck actually said that much further) from that seven-minute segment.

At the Jerusalem Post, the JTA article is faithfully reproduced, but there's also an audio clip included (courtesy of Media Matters, no less), which concludes with this assessment by Beck:

There is no difference between him and the 9-11 bombers.  Nothing.  No difference.  He is just as bad as Osama bin Laden.  Period.
So why not that headline?  Why not Beck likens Anders Behring Breivik to Osama bin Laden? With the massive media campaign underway to smear every vocal opponent of global jihad with Breivik's horrific insanity, you'd think that would be the "dog bites man" angle.  But, instead, the JTA just piles on.
Beck is probably going to end up having to issue yet another apology for the Hitler Youth remark, as he should.  But you have to wonder about the JTA's agenda here.  You have to wonder about it a lot lately.

Ayalon: The truth about "the West Bank"

Because the more views, the better.

Debt ceiling follies

The self-described "Bipartisan Policy Center" seems to have a semi-official spokesperson making the rounds on the budget/deficit crisis this month.  Jay Powell is being quoted and interviewed in every corner of the media, it seems.  And yet, it's hard to pin his story down, and the media spin doesn't help.

Here he is talking to Gwen Ifill on the PBS Newshour, July 12:

GWEN IFILL: Can we start with what the president said today, that, on Aug. 3, Social Security checks might not go out? Is that -- is it that dire?

JAY POWELL: Well, if we don't raise the debt ceiling by Aug. 2, then, on Aug. 3, the federal government will come to work and will be short 44 cents on the dollar for the rest of August and will not be able to make a great number of very important payments. So, what -- the president's statement is correct on its face.

Oh my!  Social Security checks might not go out!  That does sound dire.  But here he is talking to John McCormack of The Weekly Standard just four days earlier:

The decision to prioritize payments would fall on the Treasury department, and Powell points out it would be chaotic picking and choosing who gets paid (in full or partially) and who doesn't.

Powell notes, however, that Congress made sure during a budget standoff in 1996 that Social Security recipients would not be affected. "In 1996, during an impasse, [Treasury Secretary] Bob Rubin gave the Congress notice that he would be unable to pay the March '96 Social Security payment. Congress immediately--and I mean, immediately--passed a law that allowed the Treasury to borrow money specifically for that purpose and exempted that borrowing from the debt limit."
So ... then the president's statement actually isn't correct on its face.  Well, no, because that 1996 legislation was temporary and would have to be reenacted again in order to apply to the current crisis.  So, indeed, absent such legislation, the president's statement is correct on its face, theoretically, assuming Congress would allow that to happen, which it most assuredly would not.

Confused yet?

Freedom of expression

So  I wonder if the same people expressing outrage against the "anti-democracy" boycott bill will speak up against this as well.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak ordered his ministry's legal advisor to look into the possibility of passing emergency legislation that will prevent right-wing extremists from harassing and protesting outside the home of Judea and Samaria Division Commander Brig.-Gen. Nitzan Alon.

Barak ordered the Defense Ministry's legal advisor Achaz Ben-Ari to discuss the issue with Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein in an effort to put an end to the ongoing protests against Alon and his family.
One hand.


Medea Benjamin, co-founding kook of Code Pink, has sent an email to Aaron Lerner of IMRA (and doubtless to many others as well, but she'll get no sympathy here):

From: Medea Benjamin info@codepink.org
Sent: Tuesday, July 12, 2011 11:24 PM
To: imra@netvision.net.il
Subject: SOS: Help Free US Boat to Gaza from Greek Military Dock!

July 12, 2011

Dear Aaron,

I'm writing to you from the deck of The Audacity of Hope. But we're not on a lovely Greek island, sipping ouzo and taking dips in the cool, clear Mediterranean. We're stuck in a dusty, barren military port outside Athens. Ten days after we tried to break free from the Greek authorities and sail to Gaza, our boat continues to be impounded. The eight of us still on board are living in dismal surroundings, enclosed by gates and razor wire, baking in 95-degree heat. Press are not allowed in; visitors are restricted and must be pre-approved. Our Embassy has refused to help us. Worse yet, when we try to protest at our Embassy, the Greek police detain us and take us to jail - on orders, they tell us, from the U.S. Embassy.  Our captain was put in jail for four days. He was finally released, but still faces bogus charges of endangering the passengers and disobeying a police order to keep the ship at dock.

The Greek authorities continue to enforce a ban on all travel to Gaza, and have imposed even more bureaucratic obstacles to prevent us from moving our boat. They say we must make some adjustments to pass inspection, but have not yet given the approval for workers to come on board to get the work done.  Our travails, together with the obstacles the other boats are facing, are clearly a shameful reflection of the Greek government's decision to do Israel's dirty work in stopping the Freedom Flotilla from sailing to Gaza.

While we are suffering under miserable conditions, Greek President Karolos Papoulias is in Israel, being feted and thanked by President Shimon Peres for Greece's role in thwarting the flotilla.

Please call the Greek Embassy and State Department and tell them to FREE OUR SHIP FROM THE MILITARY DOCK! Hillary Clinton will be visiting Greece later this week. One word to her Greek counterparts and our boat would be free.

Greek Embassy: 202-939-1300

US Sec. of State Hillary Clinton: 202-647-5291

Despite this debacle, the flotilla has been a huge success, ...
Yes, of course it has, sweetie.  Just keep telling yourself that.  With successes like this, who needs failure?

Anyway, enough.  She goes on, though, so click through if you if you'd like to read the whole thing.  And as Dr. Lerner suggests, you may want to use those phone numbers to call and say thanks.

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