At the end of tonight’s “Countdown,” Keith Olbermann announced that it would be...Read More
… and the complicit MSM.
The Republican spin machine is at it again. They have launched a coordinated, preemptive strike against Patrick Fitzgerald and any pending indictments. Basically, the strategy is: describing the prosecutor, the media, and any D’s who ‘dare’ impugn the reputation of the Cheney/Rove/Libby/WHIG cabal or express sympathy for Joe and Valerie Wilson, as bleeding-heart wimps who don’t understand how the “real world” of politics works. They excuse the leak and any attempt to hide it as simply being “aggressive politics” and that anyone who complains is just being a baby.
Unfortunately, and dare I say inevitably, they are good at this stuff. It starts to seep in, even into the SCLM. Most notable disappointments include Tim Russert, who basically gave Kay Bailey Hutchison free time on MTP this weekend to expound on the Republican talking points, and now Nicholas Kristof in today’s NYT, who opines that:
“Before dragging any Bush administration officials off to jail, we should pause and take a long, deep breath… We don’t know what evidence has been uncovered by Patrick Fitzgerald, but we should be uneasy that he is said to be mulling indictments that aren’t based on his prime mandate, investigation of possible breaches of the 1982 law prohibiting officials from revealing the names of spies. Instead, Mr. Fitzgerald is rumored to be considering mushier kinds of indictments, for perjury, obstruction of justice or revealing classified information. [NOTE: this is HOOK-LINE-AND-SINKER what the R fog machine wants us to think).
There is, of course, plenty of evidence that White House officials behaved abominably in this affair. I’m offended by the idea of a government official secretly using the news media – under the guise of a “former Hill staffer” – to attack former Ambassador Joseph Wilson. That’s sleazy and outrageous. But a crime? I’m skeptical, even though there seems to have been a coordinated White House campaign against Mr. Wilson. To me, the whisper campaign against Mr. Wilson amounts to back-stabbing politics, but not to obvious criminality. [Note: Did Sen. Hutchison write this for him? This is EXACTLY what the R strategy says].
So I find myself repulsed by the glee that some Democrats show at the possibility of Karl Rove and Mr. Libby being dragged off in handcuffs. It was wrong for prosecutors to cook up borderline and technical indictments during the Clinton administration, and it would be just as wrong today. Absent very clear evidence of law-breaking, the White House ideologues should be ousted by voters, not by prosecutors.”
Aaarrggghhh!!! Where can I start? Not only does this column make Kristof look like an (unwitting?) supporter of the Republican spin-control team, but it makes the cardinal mistake throughout (in some passages that I didn’t quote, as well as the concluding passage above) of comparing Ken Starr’s investigation of Bill Clinton and the ultimate perjury charges there–over a BLOWJOB–to this investigation of a rogue White House cabal that successfully fogged the nation into WAR!!! It is as outrageous as Sen. Hutchison’s comparison (which Russert failed to challenge!) of this investigation with the MARTHA STEWART prosecution!
Well, they hopefully have started to rouse a sleeping lion. A friend of mine who worked in the Clinton White House forwarded me an email that is making the rounds among Clinton alumni. It is a GREAT collection of quotes from a long list of R stalwarts, including Hutchison herself, about the seriousness, severity, and impeachable character of a perjury charge. Hopefully these quotes, gathered by the DSCC, can start to make the rounds (beginning here?) and some members of the SCLM can question these Senators about their shameful double-standard and hypocrisy.Read More
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