I am going to journey past the Singularity of Stupid that has lodged itself in the shared cortex of the planet, fighting the demons of Mental Craptitude that seek to bring about the Dumbass Rapture and Moronic Apocalypse, and bring you the most cherished jewel of all: A Functional Goddamned Synapse.
Joseph Wilson having a wife is not a classified secret of the United States.
Joseph Wilson having a wife named Valerie Plame is NOT a classified secret of the United States.
The CLASSIFIED part is that, up until unnamed "senior administration officials" decided otherwise, Valerie Plame, wife of Joseph Wilson, WAS AN UNDERCOVER CIA OPERATIVE.
THAT is the part that the CIA, Wilson, Plame, their children, everyone Plame ever worked with, foreign or domestic, every company Plame ever used as nonofficial cover -- and every American with even the slightest concern over the proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction and U.S. efforts to track and curb the same -- thought maybe should stay classified, since, you know, IT WAS CLASSIFIED.
Yes, even if Joseph Wilson was a big meanie. Yes, even if he had the audacity to piss someone in the administration off. Yes, shock of goddamn shocks, even if he proved to be a Democrat.
Despite the urgently proposed Republicans Can Commit Whatever Crimes They Want Act of 2005, sponsored by Tom DeLay, leaking classified information to multiple reporters is still considered a crime, even if you "had a really good reason."
But we are two years into this case, and we still have people suddenly "discovering" that Joseph Wilson previously admitted having a wife! And, like, she ate at dinners! And bought clothing! And had children! And didn't wear a grocery bag whenever she went into public, for fear someone might see her! And guess what? Before "senior administration officials" outed her, she didn't have to, because nobody knew she was an undercover CIA agent.
And just as an aside, to the blogger(s) who are still, two years into the case, "eagerly awaiting" word on "whether Plame was even officially covert", or whether a "crime was even committed" (and damn the devil-soaked trackbacks that lead me to these shipwrecks of mental corruption):
If we can be sure of one thing, over the last two years, I think we can be sure that Plame was covert. We have the implicit word of the CIA, who referred the case for investigation. We have the implicit word of the Justice Department, that appointed a prosecutor to pursue it. But most importantly, we have the implicit word of the judges who had to determine whether or not throwing a reporter into jail for nearly three months constituted a necessary act. Unanimously, and using eight pages of redacted, classified arguments, they asserted it did.
It takes an act of wanton dumbassitude to assert, after the case has been investigated for two years, that maybe Plame wasn't really covert, and they'll get around any day now to figuring that out. Call me an excessive believer in the powers of investigative deduction, but I'm pretty sure that before spending two years of investigation, the CIA figured out whether or not Plame was actually covert.
Yes, this is the intellectual movement that is going to take down the mainstream media with their hard-hitting news analysis. These are the New Pundits, the FactCheckers, the Socket Rientists of Journalism. From the militia members stocking up for the nuclear apocalypse to be caused by Y2K, to the network-busting power of small animated gifs, to the monkey howls of Hillary! Hiiiiiillaryyyyyyy! that accompany the slightest dull thud in the political landscape, these are the members of "Bush's Base".
Lord help us all, we're going to die.