Ben Johnson

Heartfelt Condolences to Teresa Heinz Kerry, Fighting Breast Cancer

2009 December 23
Fighting the good fight.

Fighting the good fight.

I’m the author of two books on Teresa Heinz. The first, 57 Varieties of Radical Causes: Teresa Heinz Kerry’s Radical Philanthropy, came out weeks before the 2004 election. The second, Teresa Heinz Kerry’s Radical Gifts, came out four years later. In tandem, they document how she used tax-exempt grants t0 underwrite the 2004 Democratic National Convention, the Tides Foundation, environmental extremists, and a film festival that glorified same-sex teacher-student pedophilia. Together, they run several hundred pages.

Teresa, who is notoriously harsh toward her critics, probably never thought a positive thought about me.

When I read of her diagnosis with breast cancer yesterday morning, my heart broke.

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ObamaCare: The Other Socialist Connection (Meet Marilyn Katz)

2009 December 23

SDS radical, New America Movement leader, and Obama/Jarrett friend Marilyn Katz

John Perazzo has another chapter in the ever-growing list of Obama Communist associations and influences at FrontPage Magazine. “The Communists Behind Obama’s Health Care Goals,” which draws on the research of Trevor Loudon, traces the influence of Dr. Quentin Young, a former Young Communist League who went on to join the Democratic Socialists of America  (DSA) — and who attended the first Obama fundraiser at Bill Ayers’s house.  Young claims his organization, Physicians for a National Health Program, convinced Obama to support a single payer health care plan — the goal to which the present bill is the first step.

There is a connection the article misses, though, one even closer to Obama. As Perazzo mentions, Young was associated with the New America Movement (NAM), which eventually merged with the DSA. A NAM founder and its national political secretary was Marilyn Katz. As I exposed in my original article “Valerie Jarrett: The Next Van Jones” in September, Katz was closely associated with Chicago city hall and helped Obama’s alter ego and intimate adviser Valerie Jarrett get her start as a slumlord at Habitat.

And Katz, a lifelong socialist revolutionary who said last August that she “probably” rejects violence, is a close friend of Jarrett — and of Barack and Michelle Obama. She even visited the White House this July.

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Genius Envy: Ed Schultz Repudiates Ed Schultz

2009 December 22


In a remarkable moment in last night’s edition of The Ed Show on MSNBC, Ed Schultz got carried away and made a small government case against mandatory health care insurance. Perhaps channeling his former line of work as a Rush Limbaugh impersonator on the Right, Schultz said:

The bill makes the insurance mandatory for all Americans. This mandate is one of the most unAmerican things, I think, the Senate has ever done. This isn’t the same thing as mandating for car insurance or home owners insurance. I mean, there’s nothing more personal than your body…Forcing people, by the way, to buy health care, in my opinion, that’s not liberty. It’s not reform. It’s restriction. It’s a restriction of freedom that’s not democratic.

Evidently, Schultz switched back from conservative Jeckyll to leftist Hyde so swiftly that he did not realize he had repudiated his own position on health care “reform.”

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Midnight Snack: Adolf Hitler Sings the Theme to “The Jeffersons”

2009 December 21

Mel Brooks once said he devoted his life to ridiculing Adolf Hitler through comedy. This video is presented to that end.

Open Thread – The Public Option in 40 Seconds

2009 December 21

Genius Envy: Ed Schultz’s Next Target?

2009 December 21

Bret Baier of Fox News Special Report.

This series of posts is dedicated to the proposition that 90 percent of everything Ed Schultz, the host of MSNBC’s The Ed Show, does is motivated by envy (and the same could be said of the Left). Schultz has raged against his more successful colleagues Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly, and Glenn Beck. The folks at Politico give an indication of who Schultz’s next target may be: Bret Baier of Fox News’ “Special Report.” A side-by-side comparison with Ed’s direct competitor is damning:

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Genius Envy: Bill O’Reilly and Dennis Miller “Barely Qualify as Men”

2009 December 21
Does Ed Schultz read this blog?

Does Ed Schultz read this blog?

I have long held MSNBC host Ed Schultz’s erratic behavior stems from his political and professional status: he envies those whose careers surpass his. As David Swindle noted in the roll-out of this series, “Ben’s posts on Schultz are collected and all future articles will be collected here under the series name ‘Genius Envy,’ a play on a well-known Freudian term.” I came up with the name “Genius Envy” to highlight the way much of Ed’s incendiary rhetoric seems to be rooted in his offended masculinity. I was gratified to see my thesis was proven correct in less than a week. Last Thursday Schultz, the poor mind’s Rush Limbaugh, wanted to compare his manhood with Bill O’Reilly and Dennis Miller.

He began this segment of The Ed Show by ripping “[f]ailed comedian and sportscaster Dennis Miller” over a joke he made at the WWE Slammy Awards, then criticized Bill O’Reilly’s reaction to the skit on The O’Reilly Factor. Ed crowed, “O’Reilly condone[d] that despicable display of unapologetic sexism,” and criticized Bill for donating $25,000 to Miller’s favorite charity at Christmastime (!).

When he rolled the footage of O’Reilly calling Miller “a good man,” Ed launched into his manhood measurement moment:

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Genius Envy: Ed Schultz Discovers Obama’s Thuggery

2009 December 18
Thuggery for me, not against me.

Thuggery for me, not against me.

Ed Schultz has joined Howard Dean and others who believe the Democrats should kill this health care bill unless it contains a “public option.” He had a brief, relatively tepid exchange yesterday morning with David Axelrod on Morning Joe and decided he was being persecuted. Ed opened his show last night saying:

The White House — ooh, are they a little touchy as of late? Desperate to sell what they are calling health care reform — I don’t buy it. They are trying to vilify now anyone who opposes it. That’s what’s happening to Howard Dean.

Ed tried to push himself into the fray, noting that Axelrod had been on Hardball just before The Ed Show and had said:

Ed Schultz is a very passionate person, and I think he genuinely wants what’s best for people.

Behold the Passion of Ed Schultz.

Ed’s words are (mildly) significant (for once) because they mark the first time anyone on the Left acknowledged what the rest of us have long known: this president is a thug. However, Ed overlooks the fact that violence and intimidation are the modus operandi of the Left. And he ignores the vilification and character assassination he perpetrated against those who opposed socialized medicine from the bill’s introduction until this week, which includes quite a litany:

Genius Envy: Would-Be Lieberman Assailant Asks, “Where’s the Hate Speech on Joe Lieberman?”

2009 December 18
Threatening to beat up a U.S. Senator is not "hate speech" according to this man.

Suggesting someone beat up a U.S. senator is not "hate speech" according to this man.

Three full days after he wondered why no one had punched Joe Lieberman (“Traitor Joe,” as he calls him), Ed Schultz of MSNBC’s The Ed Show insisted no one on the Left had ever defamed the distinguished senator from Connecticut. Last night, Schultz asked former Republican Congressman Ernest Istook about Democratic infighting over the health care bill. Istook, now a Distinguished Fellow at the Heritage Foundation, replied things had gotten so bad that “if conservatives said the things about liberals that liberals are saying about each other now, we would be accused of using hate speech.” This sent the easily agitated Schultz into a lather:

Now, Ernest, you’re saying the Left is doing some hate speech. Now, where’s the hate speech on Joe Lieberman? Come on!

Big Ed could begin with his video library from this week…

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Genius Envy: War on Terror, No! War on “Conservadems,” Yes!

2009 December 17
Osama bin Laden or Joseph I. Lieberman: Guess who makes her blood boil?

Osama bin Laden or Joseph I. Lieberman: Guess which one makes her blood boil?

Leftists who decried the War on Terror now use the same terminology to describe center-Left members of their own party. On last night’s episode of MSNBC’s The Ed Show, Ed Schultz interviewed Katrina vanden Heuvel about President Obama’s “sellout” on the health care bill. Katrina complained Obama’s is “a White House which has emboldened the conservadems, people like Joe Lieberman” who “is now holding hostage” socialized medicine. She repeated the elocution moments later while appealing to “citizens who don’t want to be held hostage by the insurance companies.” Schultz thanked her for appearing, adding, “Always the truth coming from you and The Nation.”

The truth is Katrina used language about Joe Lieberman she would be hesitant to apply to Islamist terrorists. In a 2004 Nation editorial entitled “Dissent is Patriotic,” vanden Heuvel faulted Republicans for saying the Party of Defeat‘s characteristic rhetoric “emboldened the enemy,” accusing the GOP of breeding “a culture of fundamentalism and intolerance.” (But Katrina has had consistency troubles before.) The domestic Left sees far greater danger from conservatives than jihadists and apportions its disdain accordingly.

This ignores a cardinal reality about Joe Lieberman: he is not a conservative. I substantiated this beyond doubt in 2006, when the New York Times quoted another Lieberman critic: then-Congressman Rahm Emmanuel.

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Just So We’re Clear….

2009 December 16

BenJohnson-LowIntellectThis isn’t me.

Genius Envy: Ed Schultz’s Plan to Motivate Joe Lieberman is “Punching the Guy Out”

2009 December 16


Sen. Joe Lieberman opposes the current health care bill, so MSNBC’s Ed Schultz has a solution: punch him out. On last night’s episode of The Ed Show, Schultz asked Democratic Senator and way-too-frequent guest Sherrod Brown, D-OH:

What is the feeling towards Joe Lieberman? I mean how do you, you know, go into a room without punching the guy out after what he’s done to the progressive movement in this country? I mean, that’s how I think a lot of people feel. What attitude, what attitude — is he still just a beloved, friendly, fraternal senator, or is he a jerk in the room?

The courageous Brown, after hearing the violent tirade against his colleague, replied:

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