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Can I just say something straight-up here?

Having Ann Coulter on your network debating the "meaning" of the Fitzgerald investigation isn't relevant. It isn't useful. It's like watching a dog crap to music. There's some percentage of the country that would probably tune in to that too, but it doesn't make it "news" or even "analysis".

And you can repeat that statement, to a less overtly crass degree, for nearly every Republican and Democratic professional spinner, on both sides. During this particular week, we have actual news. It means something, something important. We don't know all the facts yet, or even whether or not a man is guilty or innocent, and finding out is deadly serious business. So how about we start finding out the facts? How 'bout the media start, instead of turning this story into the same Rolodex-emptying game of Hollywood Squares that producers have managed to turn every major national story into, these last ten years?

Interviewing reporters who have been breaking new information in this story -- I'm sympathetic to that. Interviewing longtime Washington hands who can shed light on what it means to have something be "classified", or legal figures who can explore where the case could go, by all means. But there is something flatly wrong about the ongoing, incessant Pundit-O-Matic that presumes that just because someone is a partisan, they have relevancy to this story.

I'm sick of Republican pundits expressing doughy vindication that there is, according to them, only one potential felon in the White House. That's the standard, now? "Just one felon" is fine? And it's only for a cover-up, and not the "actual crime", so hell, that's just dandy? That's the damn standard, nowdays?

I'm sick of partisan defenders claiming that, well, we have to expect a certain amount of felonies in any political enterprise, be it DeLay or Abramoff or Noe or blah blah blah right up to the White House itself, and it's really quite crass to expect otherwise.

And I am very, very sick of the continuing Bitch Deserved It talking point. No, not sick -- f---ing livid. They all say oh, America's at war. Oh, terrorism is an imminent threat. Oh, human sources are our best defense in this new time of constant, low-grade warfare. But f--k those goddamn operatives, if party momentarily requires it.

Throughout the entire pundit brigade -- blogosphere included -- everyone is trying to decide whether or not the Fitzgerald indictments are a "victory" for their side or the other side. It's not, OK? It's just not. There is nothing good or victorious about this situation, for either side. Nothing. Nothing.

We've got exactly two choices here. Either the White House outed a covert agent because they handled sensitive and classified information so incompetently that it was distributed throughout the administration and into administration-selected leak receptacles without anyone realizing that the classified information was, duh, classified...

Or, they did it on purpose. I say "they", because we know that even though Libby is currently the only one indicted, the public record already shows, at minimum, Karl Rove as being one of the other administration figures that discussed Plame's classified CIA status with multiple reporters. That little tidbit ain't going away, regardless of how it's spun.

Incompetence, or intentional. Ignoring Republican fantasies that, after two entire years, the CIA still couldn't figure out whether or not Plame's status, marked as secret-NF in documents, was, you know, secret, that's what we're left with. Mishandling of classified information, or willful distribution of classified information -- and Libby, bless his true believer, neoconservative heart, has taken it upon himself to hide from the American people the answer to that question.

I want one thing out of this entire investigation. I want to find out what happened, and why. In that Scooter Libby has now been indicted for obstructing prosecutorial attempts to find out -- by flatly lying, on multiple occasions -- than yes, I freely admit I take a certain grim satisfaction in a prosecutor dragging him out of the White House by his ankles, and the prospects of depositing him, eventually, in a jail cell. But there's nothing happy about this week, or the month before it, or the two years before that. And there won't be much to celebrate even when this whole sorry mess is finally done and over with.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:18 PM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  David Brooks vs. Patrick Fitzgerald (4.00)
    Q: Did David Brooks even bother to listen to Fitzgerald (seriously)???  I cannot see any evidence of it:

    The Prosecutor's Diagnosis: No Cancer Found
    On March 21, 1973, John Dean told President Nixon that there was a cancer on his presidency. There was, Dean said, a metastasizing criminal conspiracy spreading through the White House.

    Thirty-two years later, Patrick Fitzgerald has just completed a 22-month investigation of the Bush presidency. One thing is clear: there is no cancer on this presidency. Fitzgerald, who seems to be a model prosecutor, enjoyed what he called full cooperation from all federal agencies. He found enough evidence to indict one man, Scooter Libby, on serious charges.

    But he did not find evidence to prove that there was a broad conspiracy to out a covert agent for political gain. He did not find evidence of wide-ranging criminal behavior...


    Transcript of Special Counsel Fitzgerald's Press Conference
    (excerpts [mine], link to transcript - in its entirety - beneath)

    FITZGERALD: This grand jury's term has expired by statute; it could not be extended. But it's in ordinary course to keep a grand jury open to consider other matters, and that's what we will be doing.
    Let me then ask your next question: Well, why is this a leak investigation that doesn't result in a charge? I've been trying to think about how to explain this, so let me try. I know baseball analogies are the fad these days. Let me try something.

    If you saw a baseball game and you saw a pitcher wind up and throw a fastball and hit a batter right smack in the head, and it really, really hurt them, you'd want to know why the pitcher did that. And you'd wonder whether or not the person just reared back and decided, "I've got bad blood with this batter. He hit two home runs off me. I'm just going to hit him in the head as hard as I can."

    You also might wonder whether or not the pitcher just let go of the ball or his foot slipped, and he had no idea to throw the ball anywhere near the batter's head. And there's lots of shades of gray in between.

    You might learn that you wanted to hit the batter in the back and it hit him in the head because he moved. You might want to throw it under his chin, but it ended up hitting him on the head.

    FITZGERALD: And what you'd want to do is have as much information as you could. You'd want to know: What happened in the dugout? Was this guy complaining about the person he threw at? Did he talk to anyone else? What was he thinking? How does he react? All those things you'd want to know.

    And then you'd make a decision as to whether this person should be banned from baseball, whether they should be suspended, whether you should do nothing at all and just say, "Hey, the person threw a bad pitch. Get over it."

    In this case, it's a lot more serious than baseball. And the damage wasn't to one person. It wasn't just Valerie Wilson. It was done to all of us.

    And as you sit back, you want to learn: Why was this information going out? Why were people taking this information about Valerie Wilson and giving it to reporters? Why did Mr. Libby say what he did? Why did he tell Judith Miller three times? Why did he tell the press secretary on Monday? Why did he tell Mr. Cooper? And was this something where he intended to cause whatever damage was caused?

    FITZGERALD: Or did they intend to do something else and where are the shades of gray?

    And what we have when someone charges obstruction of justice, the umpire gets sand thrown in his eyes. He's trying to figure what happened and somebody blocked their view.

    As you sit here now, if you're asking me what his motives were, I can't tell you; we haven't charged it.

    So what you were saying is the harm in an obstruction investigation is it prevents us from making the fine judgments we want to make.

    •  Yes, but is the sand out of his eyes yet? (none)
      If not, then what Libby did was illegal, but it was also successful, so far.

      I want to hear from Fitz that his vision has cleared up.

      "If you [just] wanted to reduce ignorance, you could ... abort every Republican baby in this country, and your ignorance rate would go down."

      by Major Danby on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:28:32 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  what valerie did was illegal (none)
        it is a war of terror

        everyone in the CIA IS GUILTY

        love life, ride bikes

        by common terry on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 06:05:58 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I Don't Get It (none)
          Is this tongue-in-cheek, or...?

          Not everyone in the CIA is guilty; not by a longshot.  Only the right people when required.  Otherwise, there are many caring, very competent, constitutionally-respectful career professionals there.

          But we're not talking about that.

          I've had this sinking/angry feeling that I think Major Dan alludes to.  I'm hoping that Fitzgerald is proceeding very cautiously to build up a larger (more important) case.  Otherwise, I'm afraid it will add to bunk.

          Hunter's observations are well spoken.  I keep wondering why any Democrat or "liberal"-leaning person (expert? professional pundit? politico? wonk?) would even give any grace whatsoever to any  talking (shit)heads at all.  The latter are so easily called out on the fact that they have no fucking idea what they are talking about.

    •  I'm always happy (4.00)
      to see a Brooks column. It means I can save myself an extra couple of minutes by ingoring the pompous asshole.

      David Brooks (I almost barf as I type) is a smary, delusional, asshole hack worthy of nothing but disdain.

      •  My favorite Brooks quote... (4.00)
        ...(which is something like having a favorite ball of turd, or a favorite booger) begins, "We in the pundit class..."

        And he wasn't being ironic, either.

        "...psychopaths have little difficulty infiltrating the domains of...politics, law enforcement, (and) government." Dr. Robert Hare

        by RubDMC on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:23:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  here's a good one from Brooks (none)
          The column that began:  "As a colleague of mine says, every crisis is an opportunity. And sure enough, Hurricane Katrina has given us an amazing chance to do something serious about urban poverty.

          That's because Katrina was a natural disaster that interrupted a social disaster. It separated tens of thousands of poor people from the run-down, isolated neighborhoods in which they were trapped."

          AKA their "homes."

          •  And of course he left out the most salient point (none)
            The lower 9th ward may have been a ghetto, but 80% of the occupants owned their own homes according to the census bureau as reported by NPR.
            It was their lack of capital that made it a slum.

            In prison, Tom Delay will no doubt be called 'the Hummer' by his fellow convicts.

            by soonergrunt on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 09:22:01 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Brooks induces vomiting (none)
        I agree with all you say.  But I sometimes wonder if Brooks is shamming, meaning he isn't delusional, he's simply lying as hard and fast as he can.
        •  Brooks Looks Like (none)
          He's desperately trying to believe what's coming out of his mouth--every time he's on The News Hour, for example.  What's worse is that his somewhat well-intentioned attempt at reasoning--he's clearly not as unintelligent as many, if not most, neocon apologists--is totally subsumed by the utter lack of factually-based logic.

          Join the reality-based community, Mr. Brooks.  The knowledge might seem burdensome at first, since we are hard-pressed to know exactly what to do about it, but you know what?  The truth will set you free, particularly in that regard, and they will never, every again have a grip on your desperate justifications, and you will know that the most righteous thing to happen is for the cabal and the puppet it makes dance with devlish delight to lie down in the dustbin of history.  By way of going to Hell.

    •  Fitz is pissed (4.00)



      Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald is planning to call Vice President Dick Cheney as a witness in the trial of Lewis Libby, the DRUDGE REPORT has leaned.

      But the high stakes move could result in an executive privilege showdown between the White House and Fitzgerald, a top government source said Sunday.

      "If Mr. Fitzgerald is going to demand a public recounting of conversations between the vice president, or even the president, and his staff, on matters he, himself, has acknowledged are 'classified,' executive privilege will obviously be invoked."

      Fitzgerald has made it clear to lawyers involved in the case that he prefers Cheney appear as a witness in open court.

      "Mr. Fitzgerald is starting from the position that this should not be done on remote or videotape," the well-placed source said.

      Fitzgerald and Libby's attorney Joseph Tate discussed possible plea options before the indictment was issued last week, TIME magazine reports in new editions. But the deal was scotched because the prosecutor insisted that Libby do some "serious" jail time.


      •  These are the same people (none)
        who laughed and sniggered when president Clinton spoke at this second inaugural speech, c'mon, what do you expect?

        Before you know what kindness really is you must lose things, feel the future dissolve in a moment like salt in a weakened broth. Naomi Shihab Nye

        by panicbean on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:10:48 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I knew Fitz was pissed (none)
          But I did not think Fitz would be coming out swing this soon.

          Cheney does have a good argument on invoking exutive privlige, on the other hand Fitz has a good argument on invoking national security.

          I am  thinking that the damge from outing Plame was more serious then we could have imanged.

          •  There is no executive priviledge (4.00)
            for conspiracy.  There is no executive priviledge to obstruct justice.  No court in the country would allow it.  Not even the most conservative supreme court we could imagine.

            In prison, Tom Delay will no doubt be called 'the Hummer' by his fellow convicts.

            by soonergrunt on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 09:36:51 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  End of Plame's career? (none)
            The biggest hoax perpetuated on the general public by the liberal media is that Valerie Plame's career as a covert agent is over. Nothing could be further from the truth. All Valerie need do is disguise herself in the traditional full burqa, which she can purchase over the internet from Norman Lear, and she is good to go for a round of righteous espionage on the streets and in the coffee houses of an unsuspecting Muslim city somewhere in the Middle East.
      •  What executive privilege? (4.00)
        I thought Valerie Wilson wasn't really covert?  I thought "everyone knew" she was CIA?  I thought that a little payback is just the way hardball politics is played?  So what's the problem, Dick?

        In any event, everyone knows who Valerie Plame is now.  I don't see how Cheney's testimony about the discussions that are mentioned in the indictment could possibly be subject to executive privilege, anymore than the discussions Richard Nixon had about how to deal with his little plumbing problem.

        "Mommy, did people know that Bush was stupid when they voted for him?"

        by litigatormom on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:18:27 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Good point (none)
          They didn't care if she was undercover when they outted her.  How ironic that they would use that as a shield now.  So they had a total (and malicious) disregard for whether she was undercover when it suited their political purposes, but it just wouldn't be appropriate to talk about it in an inquiry about a breach of national security.  Maybe someone should "accidentally" out Cheney's undisclosed location.
      •  This would be where (none)
        all of those rulings asserting that the president could be sued, could be subpoenaed, etc., during the Clinton years will be coming back to haunt them.  First, with all those soun bites about the president not being above the law, etc., & second, with just those pesky precedents!  Ha!  Ha Ha!
    •  my letter to David Brooks (4.00)
      I sent the following to Bobo after seeing his shameless GOP whoring on NBC's Press the Meat today:

      Mr. Brooks,

      I see you're once again hard at work shoveling out GOP talking points on the airwaves.  But please get this through your propaganda-addled skull, if it will penetrate:

      1. There WAS a crime: the outing of a covert CIA agent.

      2. Libby is obstructing the investigation into it.  Therefore, he's being charged.

      3. Charges may come for the crime of outing a CIA officer later.

      All your shameless lying and spinning can't change the facts.  

      And your "no crime" meme shows what a moral relativist you are.  If Libby had been a Democrat, you'd be breaking out the tar and feathers and decrying the treason. YOU know that.  I know that.  EVERYONE knows that.

      Shame on you, Mt. Brooks.  You're a man with no moral center at all.



    •  When is it we start ignoring Brooks? (none)
      I thought it was when NYT-select started.  Weren't we supposed to boycott these talking heads (or asses) once they went behind the "wall" so that they would rapidly become obsolete in the public discourse?  When does that start?

      I started without you, anyway.  Now I'm freed of reading that shit.

      "Every act of becoming conscious is an unnatural act." - Adrienne Rich

      by marjo on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 02:13:24 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Brooks: In the Closet (none)
        The Asshole Closet

        When you look at "the asshole class" as a continuum, Brooks occupies a particularly vile area. Whereas Cheney and Rummy and Condi make no bones about who they are and what they do, Brooks tries to obscure his assholery with obtuse points, a maternal calmness, a frozen grin, and a false pretense where he tries to imply that he is not a wing-nut nor part of the liberal media.

        Keep it real David. Just act naturally, you'll feel better about yourself AND people will be able to make better sense of you and your goofy world that you constantly (and inanely) attempt to define.

      •  It's easy enough to boycott them (none)
        in the Times online, but when the paper's there in front of you, it's kind of hard to skip right over those pages!
  •  It's not just about vindictiveness, but justice (4.00)
    It's correct to say that there's nothing "good" about this whole thing, but if someone goes to jail then justice would be served, and that is good.  May justice rain down upon all the murderers, all the looters, all the bourgeoisie scum!  

    Merry Fitzmas!

    •  Absolutely right... (none)
      ...the issue is justice and educating the public about what it means...and why it is important.  This case is the perfect's simple and easy to understand in one paragraph or less, even in an elevator.

      See Sixty Minutes tonight?  Fairly good coverage of the issue including retired CIA ops who were FURIOUS and spelled out why.

      I hate rooting for the CIA...I feel like Alice in Wonderland.

      Tell me how you spend your time and how you spend your money -- I'll tell you what your values are.

      by oldpro on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 09:16:48 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Mess Indeed (none)
    Hype threats to national security for profit.
    Damage national security for vengeance.
    Dark days for the Republic.
  •  I do think there is something (4.00)
    to celebrate -- Pat Fitzgerald. It was wonderful to hear him speak, to hear the passion and precision he brings to his work, to see that getting at the truth -- whatever that is -- is what matters so intensely to him.

    We don't get to see people like that on TV much. It's worth at least a glass of champagne.

    •  oh yeah (4.00)
      I got totally trashed Friday night. Sucked back wine all night celebrating with my political junkie friend while we watched Olbermann and C-Span all night. What a party, huh? But it was great, we ate chicken cutlet with broccoli rabe, strawberry tarts and drank Pinot Noir. Then I went to another party and drank beers and even jello shots to my heart's delight. Paid for it dearly Saturday.

      Friday was not a good day for America, but for the people who have been screaming about the criminality in the White House for the past five years, it was a moment to be proud of. Now let's just hope Fitz is able to finish the job.

      Stop saying that blue state people are out of touch with the morals and values of the red states. I'm not out of touch with them, I just don't share them.

      by missreporter on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:25:52 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Fitz is the anti-Brownie . . . (none)
      Completely competent, completely honest.  Libby should fear him.
  •  1998 (4.00)
    EDWARD PEASE (R-Ind.):

    As I have earlier observed, I am not prepared to accept that the standard of performance for an American president is simply that he or she is not indictable.

    ... Accordingly, I have concluded that perjury or false statements under oath, obstruction of justice and abuse of the Office of the Presidency are all impeachable offenses.

    No American left behind - in civil rights, in health care, in the economy.

    by JLFinch on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:21:26 PM PST

  •  Thanks Hunter (4.00)
    for bringing this whole sorry mess into perspective.
    I haven't liked the entire holiday atmospere in the liberal blogsphere. It's about treason damnit. Take it seriously.

    "I ain't no physicist, but I knows what matters"-Popeye

    by keefer55 on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:21:48 PM PST

    •  not just ordinary treason (none)
      Treason in the middle of a war.

      People get shot for that.

      •  To Cover Up a Constitutional Crisis (none)
        or perhaps even the treason of defrauding congress into granting war powers.


        We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy....--ML King, "Beyond Vietnam"

        by Gooserock on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:42:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Respectfully disagree (4.00)
      The treason already happened. We're not celebrating that. We're celebrating the fact that the traitors might be brought to justice.

      There is nothing wrong with celebrating that. Absolutely nothing.

      Americans are apt to be unduly interested in discovering what average opinion believes average opinion to be. (J.M. Keynes)

      by davinic on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:30:48 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  we ARE taking it seriously (4.00)
      Who says we're not taking it seriously? I think people are taking it so seriously it's messing with their lives a bit. I might even fall into that category myself.
      •  yep (none)
        Me too. I think people are avoiding talking to me, although I did get several emails on Friday letting me know that everyone knew I was feeling some degree of satisfaction.

        George Bush is an unnatural disaster.

        by michele2 on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:37:58 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Justice delayed... (4.00)
      but justice not denied. It's like the crime victim who's happy the criminal has been brought to trial. It would have been far better to not have been a victim in the first place. But the fact that someone's been indicted for the crime is the first step to justice.

      We are the American people, and we were the victim of the crime. We're finally starting to get some justice for it. I don't think we have to put on the sackcloth and ashes for that.

    •  I celebrate justice when it's a long time coming (4.00)
      And I long for the day when so many people aren't trying to manage my thoughts, feelings, body, medical and moral decisions, relationships and other personal expressions in my life.

      I'm a grownup. I can manage all of the above on my own and don't try to manage other people's stuff.

      Thanks anyway.

      Man will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest. - Denis Diderot

      by Peanut on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:40:06 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm with you there... (3.87)
      I'm with you both on this.  

      It's soul-sickness of government, and the cure is painful as well.

      Five years ago we were living in "normal times."
      Four years ago we were united to fight a real threat.
      Three years ago it seemed that we would succeed.

      Since then it's been a steady decline driven by madmen.  Defeat snatched from the jaws of victory, an imperial over-reach, a deluson of grandeur on a grand scale.  It's been sad to endure, sad to find out the details, and little better to see the perps wriggle as they're dragged into the light of day.  

      On the radio today, a news item: 26,000 Iraqi civilians killed, don't know where they got that total from, but you can be sure it's more than would have been killed or tortured by Saddam over a much longer period.  

      The only saving grace, ultimately, is that we can stand up and say with justifyable pride, that our system still contains within it the means of self-correction.  That no matter how big the outrages, no matter how high & mighty the guilty, justice will be done.  

      But we look ahead to 2006 and 2008, and look back at 2000 and 2004, and wonder.  Will the next two elections be stolen as were the last two?  And there, a troubling ghost flickers in and out of view, raising a doubt about that point of pride, that assurance of self-correction.  

      This will not be over until we have had two elections that are by any standard truly free, truly fair, and truly uncorrupted.  

      And so for most, the brief respite to celebrate when the wheels of justice turn, to party even, or to raise up a righteous noise.  It's understandable.  Because very shortly we will all -those who cheer as well as those who hold back tears- be standing in the gray dawn of the next day in this sad chapter in our history.  Plunged back into the uncertainty between today and two election days, waiting, working hard for outcomes, and waiting some more, to see if the system will truly correct itself.  To see if normal times will ever return, or if the present decline is terminal.  

      This protracted vigil for America is like nothing so much as a vigil for a loved one in intensive care.

      •  The self-correction in our system (none)
        is the function of having three opposing branches of government. Today, one of those branches, the judicial, is experiencing a vigorous attempt by the party in power to neutralize its effectiveness as an oppositional element.

        That's why the Miers issue looks, in retrospect, to be an accidently brilliant move by the White House. They whipped the base into a frenzy for a Scalia and now, "please Brer Fox, don' 'trow me inta dat dere nomination of a real neocon."

        But these things work best when they're subtle, like any good advertising, and when we see the black-clad men shifting the puppets about it destroys the illusion. The latest perp-walks, revelations, evidences of failure, examples of cronyism are adding up very quickly and the general sense of corruption is now hitting the man in the street.

        I'm getting a sense that we're experiencing a gradual awakening across the country. The right is becoming dissatisfied with the status quo as it is benefitting far too few. In the recent hurricane strike in Florida, f'rinstance, you can read the impassioned blog entries and comments from people down there, many of whom voted Bush, now feeling less worthy of compassion than Iraqi citizens.

        We deserve better government, better performance than we're getting. Finally, it is becoming easier to assert this in any venue without fear because it is becoming the prevailing sentiment.

      •  Well put! n/t (none)

        "There's more than one answer to these questions, pointing me in a crooked line" - Indigo Girls

        by AlanF on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:51:47 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Kate O'Bierne (none)
      Oh was she awful tonight. She was trying to spin that the White House didn't even care about Joe Wilson.

      It was pointless. I can even handle the wingnuts who want to bash, disagree with him, who are somewhat reality based, but Kate was not even trying to even pretend that she cared about facts on Hardball tonight. It was very disgusting, and shameful for her. She came out looking not as much a partisan, as an idiot.

      •  On the "special" Tweety show (none)
        Kate O'Beirne's craps are just as musical as Ann Coulters.  She's insufferable.

        But so was Tweety.  And Andrea. And who the hell is that Dickerson guy.  Does he really write for Slate?  He was talking about how the Harriet Miers debacle was good because now it "liberated" Bush.

        "Mommy, did people know that Bush was stupid when they voted for him?"

        by litigatormom on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:20:53 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Treason still prospers . . . (none)
      At best we've arrested Major Andre.  Benedict Arnold, aka Official A, is still in command at West Point.
  •  omg (4.00)
    watching a dog crap to music???? That's priceless!!!

    I'm sick of it too. Was watching "The Chris Matthews Show" this morning and they were still batting around "was she or wasn't she covert?" You goddamned idiots, you're hurting our country. Get the hell off my airwaves!

    I'm very sick. Comforted, however, by the knowledge that Fitz's investigation ain't over, and no matter what they O-pine about, he will do his job to the best of his ability.

    Stop saying that blue state people are out of touch with the morals and values of the red states. I'm not out of touch with them, I just don't share them.

    by missreporter on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:21:50 PM PST

    •  Not even a good dog, good music, or good crap (none)
      I mean, if the dog was more charismatic, maybe a cute cockeyed mutt like Benji ...

      If the tune was something catchier and finger snapping ...

      And the crap not so crappy ...

      Yeah, Hunter's right: it's not a good entertainment form.

      Man will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest. - Denis Diderot

      by Peanut on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:43:07 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Maybe if we all just stopped watching (4.00)
      except for Olberman or the Daily Show, we'd be healthier and be able to take better control of our lives. The MSM, as we know, are such Orwellian mind-f*cks. I don't know why we subject ourselves to their travesties every night, again and again. Hell, many of the diarists here at DK are better informed than the losers they have on those shows.

      Why should we allow our strings to be pulled by the likes of Andrea Mitchell or some other country-club journalist? I'm tired of us even giving those people any relevance. They count on us to watch -- let's just stop. Let's help their ratings die.

      And in the meantime, we call the shots from now on, because we own the Internet.

    •  pretend reporters like Mathews, Brooks, Isikoff et (4.00)
      colleagues have become the propaganda machine for BushCheney. Hip deep, they've aided, abetted the war, and are too ashamed to admit their complicity.

      Can't pull out now and their only option is the Libby route. Keep fibbing.

      Watch their faces when the ship sinks.

      Let's stop feeding greed. In fact, propose we make it a commandment: The greedy shall not be fed.

      by idredit on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:47:26 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  "watching a dog crap to music" (4.00)
      "Having Ann Coulter on your network debating the "meaning" of the Fitzgerald investigation isn't relevant.  It isn't useful. It's like watching a dog crap to music."

      I agree, Hunter -- except for the 'music" part.   The music might actually add some hint or memory of something pleasant to the quite unpleasant experience of watching the dog defecate.  

      By contrast, any experience of Ann Coulter is not only like watching a dog shit, but watching as that dogs shits ON YOU.   Purely unpleasant, nauseating in every conceivable way.

      Moving on...

      I can't help but notice that the corporate media is quick to invite rabid rightwing partisans on the ostensibly "mainstream" shows like Press the Meat, Hardball, Larry King, etc.  But these diehard GOP propagandists are usually balanced with tepid D.C. "journalists" or timid Dem politicians, rather than their hardcore soundbiting equivalent on the left.

      Granted, it's hard to find people as shameless and vicious as a Coulter or Limbaugh on the left.   But why do those pigs get invited to the MSM pundit party, but it would be OUT OF THE QUESTION for them to invite (say) Mike Malloy, Randi Rhodes, Mike Papantonio, or some liberal with the equivalent sense of fight-to-the-death?  

      The game must ALWAYS be fixed in favor of the Republicans.  That's how we play it in the U.S.A. these days.

    •  I'm pretty sure (4.00)
      I have that album around here somewhere.  I think I found out about it in one of those ReSearch books, back in the day.

      thanks Hunter, that was utterly poetic..

    •  Matthews said Cheney unhappy with him. (none)
      Yeah.  On Hardball, tonight, Matthews had four Bush apologists who actually had the nerve to claim that Cheney was never obsessed with Joe Wilson and in fact didn't pay much attention to him.

      Matthews responded that they were wrong and that he knew from personal experience.  Matthews said that Cheney's office called him upset that he had Joe Wilson on his show.

      Imagine that.

      •  All I can say is (none)
        Well ... finally.  Wonder if that's the same phone call that said that Valerie Wilson was "fair game?"
      •  Tweety reverts to type (4.00)
        Ah, Tweety might have made one good rebuttal, but then he asked the most mindnumbingly suptid question EVER.  He said, "Don't you wonder what George Bush does when he goes to the ranch?  Is he really clearing brush?"  

        "Hmm," I says to myself, "Self, is he about to reveal that Bush is drinking?"

        But nooooo.  Tweety finishes his question, "I mean, how does he learn? How does he take it all in?  Is he studying, thinking?"

        How could Tweety or anyone else seriously ask a question about how Bush learns, or thinks, or studies?  What evidence is there that Bush has ever done any of these things?

        BTW, Andrea Mitchell also told Kate O'Beyotch that Cheney was pissed about Wilson, but then she made some excuse for it like, "they thought he was making stuff up."

        "Mommy, did people know that Bush was stupid when they voted for him?"

        by litigatormom on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:26:31 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Special Hardball tonight was disgusting!!!!! (4.00)
        I saw the Matthews show tonight and I wanted to puke!  John Dickerson was the only half way decent person on the show.  Mike Allen, Times Report, is nothing but a shrill for Bush&Co.  But the worst was Kate (whatever) bringing up talking points that were so old they had mold all over them that even Chris and Andrea Mitchell were getting upset.  I am normally digusted with Chris Mathews, but there were times I believe he was trying to get to the real facts but couldn't because all these shrills (with the exception of Dickerson) couldn't stop lying long enough to get to the damn truth.  It was disgusting!!!!

        Sometimes I feel that Chris Matthews is starting to see a little light blub go off and realizes the core of this case is the Iraq War and how this Administration did everything in it's ugly power (including outing a CIA agent) to sell a war on false evidence. But when he starts talking about it, he gets too scared and pulls back and that's when he allows all of the others to take over with their stupid lies and then gets all caught up with their lies and says something like this about Bush... "I really like the guy, I may not always agree with his policies, but I think he is really likeable" as if he's trying to convince his audience that we should like him too?  That's when I really lose it and start screaming at the I agree with the person who recommended turning them off and just going to the internet!  It would be so much healthier!!!

        What part of the illegal conduct of this Administration to send our troops to fight an illegal war does the media not understand?

        by hws on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:36:37 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Tweety's pitching staff (none)
      Since all things seem now to revolve around basball analogies it seems Tweetys pitching staff has only right handers. Tweety claimed it to be an "all-star" lineup.  Who was that Mike Allen syncophant he seemed to falling all over himself with excitement about how W. was going to remake himself...he was practically hyperventilating.  Oh and what was it Tweet said...Bush made a 'standup' statement on Friday following the indictment?  How bout an apology to us all for the actions of one of his staff....lying to the American people.
    •  O'Bierne was banging . . . (none)
      the "bitch had it coming" drum real hard on Chris Matthews.  Truly disgusting.
  •  Hey... (none)

    ..." It isn't useful. It's like watching a dog crap to music."

    You got a problem with, "Pink Flamingos?"



    visit - songs, recording, pa

    by jabney on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:21:50 PM PST

  •  My main concern is (none)
    that Fitzgerald, in his press conference, seemed a little equivocal on how long the investigation would be continuing and on whether additional indictments would be forthcoming.  I realize that his responsibility is not to leak information -- and, by the way, can we have at least one pundit out there flaying Ken Starr for his conduct in investigation of Clinton, now that we see how it is supposed to be done -- but I still think that he was entitled to put the fear of God into people more than he did by clearly signaling that this was not over by a long shot.  He didn't, at least to my satisfaction, and despite the good prior example of his dogged work in the Ryan investigation, I find that worrisome.

    "If you [just] wanted to reduce ignorance, you could ... abort every Republican baby in this country, and your ignorance rate would go down."

    by Major Danby on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:22:12 PM PST

    •  stealth (4.00)
      You know, I think it's best for the investigation if the public heat is off. The looming deadline has made for an absurd pressure-cooker atmosphere around Fitzgerald, and I think it's better for him to be able to do his job without everybody evaluating what it means that he just got a haircut or rented an apartment or took a crap while listening to Bob Dylan.  I think Fitz can put the fear of God into folks much more effectively with the law and with stealth than public bluster. The people who need to know this is not over by a longshot - I have a feeling that they know damn well that this is not over by a longshot......

      Maybe he'll pull a slight of hand, a Columbo: "Oh, and Mister Vice President, just one more question....."

    •  I wasn't paying close attention (none)
      during Ken Starr's glory days.  The whole debacle left a bad taste in my mouth, so I listened with little interest or attention.  I admit the blatant stonewalling about documents pissed me off.

      But I should love for someone to summarize the Ken Starr timeline, contrasting the official releases with the unofficial leaks.  

    •  Putting the fear of God into these people (4.00)
      was the most likely the purpose of the intricately detailed indictment.

      Consequently, Fitzgerald didn't need to overstep his prosecutorial responsibilities by going beyond the four corners of the indictment. He didn't need to state his future intentions more clearly at the press conference. The indictment itself hints at what his future intentions might be. It almost screams: "Come forward, or I'm comin' to get ya."

      But we'll shout from the bow "Your days are numbered" / And like Pharaoh's tribe they'll be drownded in the tide / And like Goliath they'll be conquered

      by zerocrossing on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:19:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  A question about Clinton's time as prez (none)
    Were there any indictments, resignations, etc. because of legal trouble during the Clinton years, besides Bill's?  And what were they?  And can we compare and contrast to stave off the wingnuts?

    Just a question...

    •  hmm (none)
      I'm a bit shabby on the details, but wingnuts might bring up Henry Cisneros or Ron Brown.

      Except that Cisneros was exonerated (this was recently, right?) and Ron Brown's plane flew into an Eastern European mountain.

    •  Bush WH felonies to-date = 1, Clinton WH felonies (none)
      for all eight years = 0

      Yes, there were Clinton "associates" convicted of felonies, but not any in his administration.

      Seen any of that "whadya mean first sitting WH official in 130 years; what about Bill Clinton" nonsense?

      Well, if memory serves Clinton was acquitted on both counts in his impeachment hearings.

      That was after a lengthy, concerted and extremely well-funded (by thugs playing dirty tricks, on top of the $52M in taxpayer-funded investigation) effort to bring him down.

      In contrast, what we have seen the last couple of years is an honorable investigation, spurred by a blatant violation of the Espionage Act, which was committed by revealing classified information to millions of unauthorized people via the various newspapers that carried Novakula's infamous column. No efforts to create a crime by incessant hounding, no drumbeat from the media until the last week or so, no narration of torrid romantic scenes with which to tar the preznit (after all, he's just a fabulous guy with a good heart, right?). Just good, old fashioned pursuit of a traitor to the US, one who may have actually caused loyal CIA operatives to die, and who definitely ruined Valerie Wilson's impressive career as an NOC undercover operative in nuclear weapons non-proliferation.

      Now, I know the tin-foil wing of the wingnuts will tell you that Clinton murdered their baby in front of their eyes (but, oddly, with no other witnesses), but if you are talking about felony convictions in a recent presidential administration, I believe Reagan holds the record, with at least two convicted of felony perjury before Congress, felons pardoned by GHWB, and who now happen to be serving in the current "accountability" administration (are'nt they Elliot Abrams and John Negropointe?).

      So, although I somehow have this image of Clinton's presidency as being plagued by scandal, that image must have been formed back when the bar was a hundred times higher than it now appears to be.

      "It is no longer possible to ignore the strangeness of our public discourse." - Al Gore

      by klevenstein on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:41:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  a great web page on reagan crimes: (none)
      Massive but Under-Reported Corruption of the Reagan Administration

      My favorite part:

      James Watt, Reagan's Secretary of the Interior was indicted on 41 felony counts for using connections at the Department of Housing and Urban Development to help his private clients seek federal funds for housing projects in Maryland, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Watt conceded that he had received $500,000 from clients who were granted very favorable housing contracts after he had intervened on their behalf.  In testifying before a House committee Watt said: "That's what they offered and it sounded like a lot of money to me, and we settled on it." Watt was eventually sentenced to five years in prison and 500 hours of community service.

      Anyway, if you check it out you'll see that I was being a little soft on Reagan. His administration was so rife with felonies you can't even summarize them without running too long for a comment.

      "It is no longer possible to ignore the strangeness of our public discourse." - Al Gore

      by klevenstein on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:53:46 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Tomorrow's Post to contradict Isikoff (4.00)
    Much has been made in Left Blogistan of Michael Isikoff's MSNBC/Newsweek comment:
    In any case, Fitzgerald made another visit early Friday morning--shortly before the grand jury voted to indict Dick Cheney's top aide, I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby--to the office of James Sharp, President George W. Bush's own lawyer in the case, to tell him the president's closest aide would not be charged. Rove remains in some jeopardy, but the consensus view of lawyers close to the case is that he has probably dodged the bullet.

    Just up on the Post's Website, Milbank and Leonnig report (must be VandeHei's day off)

    two legal sources intimately familiar with Fitzgerald's tactics in this inquiry said they believe Rove remains in significant danger. They described Fitzgerald as being relentlessly thorough but also conservative throughout this prosecution -- and his willingness to consider Rove's eleventh-hour pleading of a memory lapse is merely a sign of Fitzgerald's caution.

    The Post's sources have been the best through this whole debacle.  What to expect?  They're the hometown paper, after all.

    The Chimperor Has No Clothes

    by DC Pol Sci on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:23:57 PM PST

    •  What this means is that (4.00)
      no one knows what Fitzgerald is going to do, except Fitzgerald, and maybe his investigative team.

      It's hard to say who has better sources. The political implications could lead some sources who are normally straight shooters, to spin like they've never spun before.

      Visit my blog Penndit.
      The Republicans' worst enemy is an informed electorate.

      by Newsie8200 on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:29:22 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Fitzgerald knows ... (none)
      ... that the more opportunities to share information he gives the people involved, such as Rove, the more factual information they will share, or they will implicate themselves with lies, and either way that advances his investigation. I think he is after both Rove and Eliot Abrams, who I now believe is The Leaker to Novak.
    •  Fitz is still after Rove (4.00)
      He's careful, he's conservative, and he wants to win every case he brings.

      He is the perfect prosecutor.  I mean that seriously.  One of the reasons I hated Rudy Guiliani, long before it was fashionable to hate Rudy Guiliani (i.e., when he was still the US Attorney in NYC) was because he was a bully.  Although he got a lot of convictions, MANY of them, especially his high-profile financial convictions, were overturned on appeal.

      I'll bet anything Fitz's convictions don't get reversed very often. He's not a bully.  He's a law man.

      I think I love him a little.

      "Mommy, did people know that Bush was stupid when they voted for him?"

      by litigatormom on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:30:28 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  It's like watching a dog crap to music. (4.00)
  •  Bravo. (4.00)
    When CNN announced one morning this week that they would soon "have Ann Coulter in to talk about the Fitzgerald inquiry", I wanted to get in my car, drive to Atlanta, walk through the CNN offices and turn over a table.

    Why Ann Coulter? What exactly does CNN gain by having her on the air spreading cover and lies and bigotry and hatred?

    Do your fucking job, CNN, and quit handing over valuable journalism hours to paid partisan hacks whose job it is to STOP the truth from being heard.

    •  Why not (none)
      They exhumed Haig this morning and might as well have a witch to go along with that mummy...after all it is Halloween.
    •  ...exactly.. (none)
      ..Why don't they give Chris Rock equal time?  Or say, Stallone?  Or the guy who does the Kaboom commercials?  Or me?
    •  will the Hate Crime law muzzle Coulter, ya think? (none)

      Let's stop feeding greed. In fact, propose we make it a commandment: The greedy shall not be fed.

      by idredit on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:53:51 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  you have to understand... (none)

      CNN and MSNBC and Fox News are contractually obligated to provide therapeutic venting sessions to Republican pundits.  On demand.

      It's the only good explanation.  After all, these people have nothing to say except "Uh, I hate smart honest people and I wish a twentysomething had offered [b]me[/b] oral sex or better anytime I wanted it."

      Renewal, not mere Reform.

      by killjoy on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:58:39 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  How do you explain (4.00)
        tonight's presentation of the Val P. case on CBS's
        60 Minutes? I was very pleased to see the basics of the case presented on the program. There are still many people who are stuck in the mindset of honoring the office of the Presidency and by default have included George W. Bush.

        Many, if not most, of the 60 Minutes viewers are elderly and can remember times when just speaking out about dissatisfaction with the President during a time of war was akin to being traitorous. These viewers are likely to be regular voters and believers that there is a political attachment to investigating the White House. These are many of the same people who don't see the political attachment to the outing of Val P.

        To have 60 Minutes presenting the case in a way that removes much of the confusion and misunderstanding about the investigation is a very positive move which can be beneficial to the country. I applaud CBS for its effort.

        Freedom's Angels ~Cindy/Bunny/Sibel~

        by Skylor on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 08:08:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  The more air time she gets the better (none)
      Because more people will get to see what a hateful, snotty-acting, smirking little twerp  she is.  That stuff she puts out should be marked "for conservatives use only."  Otherwise, it is not fit for consumption by the regular people, of both parties .... hazardous to the mental health.
    •  Did you see her Thursday night? (none)
      She actually was saying, "Who cares about Scooter Libby?  I didn't even know who Scooter Libby was until five minutes ago."

      Thereby admitting at best she's an awfully ignorant pundit, as well as a liar.

      "Mommy, did people know that Bush was stupid when they voted for him?"

      by litigatormom on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:32:34 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Coulter is a gene splicing experiment between (none)
      Courtney Love and Mussolini.  
    •  Paris Hilton would be more credible (none)
      than Ann Coulter.

      "Fitz. He's hot. Isn't he like a lawyer or something? This Libby guy is really boring. He creeps me out too with that talk about aspens. Now can we talk about me?"

      If CNN was shameless enough to hire Novak, then I guess it should be no surprise that they asked Ann Coulter to comment about the Fitzgerald inquiry. I think they should at least give equal time to Paris, though. Her views have to be at least as intelligent as Ann's and possibly more entertaining.

  •  Very well put. Thank you Hunter (none)

    It all went to hell when Reagan got elected President. -- DinStL

    by Disgusted in St Louis on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:24:28 PM PST

  •  Amen. (4.00)
    Incompetence, or intentional. Ignoring Republican fantasies that, after two entire years, the CIA still couldn't figure out whether or not Plame's status, marked as secret-NF in documents, was, you know, secret, that's what we're left with. Mishandling of classified information, or willful distribution of classified information -- and Libby, bless his true believer, neoconservative heart, has taken it upon himself to hide from the American people the answer to that question.

    I want one thing out of this entire investigation. I want to find out what happened, and why. In that Scooter Libby has now been indicted for obstructing prosecutorial attempts to find out -- by flatly lying, on multiple occasions -- than yes, I freely admit I take a certain grim satisfaction in a prosecutor dragging him out of the White House by his ankles, and the prospects of depositing him, eventually, in a jail cell. But there's nothing happy about this week, or the month before it, or the two years before that. And there won't be much to celebrate even when this whole sorry mess is finally done and over with.

    Tonight's 60 Minutes segment is a must watch for every single person in the country.  

    It's so much more than this one agent. It's serious sh*t, and the gravity of just how bad this leak is has NOT reached the entire country.  

    There's been quite a bit of news coverage about the political implications of the indictment, but a lot less about the national security implications of the leak itself.  The 60 Minutes segment is a solid start, and hopefully, Fitzgerald's comments about national security from Friday's press conference will eventually carry some weight. Democrats have put out statements denouncing this breach of national security.  Yet, political implications of the indictment lead the story.  

    There may not be a blue dress, but national security has been harmed.  One of the ex-CIA agents on 60 Minutes said that the leak has given all foreign governments insight into how the CIA operates.  That's going to harm future intelligence projects. This is worse than Watergate, and it's about time the media treat it as something more than a political football.

    Visit my blog Penndit.
    The Republicans' worst enemy is an informed electorate.

    by Newsie8200 on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:24:58 PM PST

    •  I like it... (4.00)
      "It's National Security stupid".  The question of the hour for every 06 candidate..."Will you or will you not support a Congressional investigation into the leadup to the Iraq war?"
      •  well that takes care of a GOP election issue (none)
        no more dems are soft on national security
        no more tax and spend liberuls
        no more dems are soft on morality and values

        Hahahahaha. 06 08 the elephant lost his tusks, his trunk, his tail and his top of the ticket - Big Dick.  Now you out there, keep clean thoughts.

        Let's stop feeding greed. In fact, propose we make it a commandment: The greedy shall not be fed.

        by idredit on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:02:05 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Turn Off and Tune In (4.00)
    Ann Coulter is on tv because she is profitable for the networks. These people are just like P.T. Barnum Barkers. Just turn it off off off. We have to starve the ratings beast. Once she stops selling books and programs, they will drop her like a bag of shit bricks.
  •  Thanks, Hunter (none)
    My husband and I were talking about this very thing on our way back to Houston from Fredericksburg, Texas today.  We still have so many questions.
    •  "Watching a dog crap to music" priceless (4.00)
      Hunter, you can sure write. The images you put in my mind are indeed something to behold.

      "The Bush administration is a travesty of a mockery of a sham of a mockery of a travesty of two mockeries of a sham!" - Fielding Mellish

      by Bailey Savings and Loan on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:31:35 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  well (4.00)
        listening to Ann Coulter is the equivalent of watching a dog crap to music

        He may talk like an idiot, and look like an idiot, but don't let that fool you: he really is an idiot. Send him back to his father and brothers...

        by distributorcap on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:53:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Just one question about your trip... (none)
      ...where'd you eat (barbecue)?

      "...psychopaths have little difficulty infiltrating the domains of...politics, law enforcement, (and) government." Dr. Robert Hare

      by RubDMC on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:29:39 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  not true (none)
    There is nothing good or victorious about this situation, for either side. Nothing. Nothing.

    I am Democrat. We know that if the truth was out there Republicans could never get elected. Libby being shown as the liar he is a victory for it shows what the Republicans are all about

    If you like incompetence, corruption and cronyism vote Republican

    by Jlukes on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:28:19 PM PST

  •  Dogs pooping to music (4.00)
    After 6 months or so of Kosing I have decided that you are my favorite FP'er.

    Where can I make a donation ?

    -5.50, -5.69   I'm Ghandi who happens to own a Machine Gun !!

    by Stink Tank on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:28:56 PM PST

  •  Journalists used to like scoops (4.00)
    Notice how rarely CNN or Fox break news stories? When we get exclusive new developments, they come from a handful of newspapers (NYTimes, LATimes, WaPo, WSJ, USA Today, even the NYDNews), sometimes the broadcast networks (though far less than during Watergate), but virtually never from the cable news groups - they clearly don't put a premium on their reporters breaking stories the way normal editors do, unless it's a missing white girl somewhere.
    •  Well, now they just scoop the poop... (4.00)
      ... to music.  

      "Injustice wears ever the same harsh face wherever it shows itself." - Ralph Ellison

      by KateCrashes on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:57:49 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  that is so true (none)
      They don't report the news they explain it to us. Or more precisely, to those too lazy or too indifferent to look at both sides of the coin.
      I didn't see the 60 Minutes piece though. Wish I had cause I was screaming at the 'tube' all morning.
      Hunter, you're the most.  Another great rant!
  •  slightly o/t (4.00)
    It isn't just the reaction to this issue -- it's the whole "Bush had a bad week" syndrome:  The pundit/MSM approach is "when" will he bounce back, with no analysis whatsoever of whether he DESERVES to "bounce back" (as if the Katrina response, Miers, leak were all somehow deus ex machina)

    The press is treating real news like reality TV; as long as they see "entertainment" value, that's all that counts.

    •  Notice the tone (4.00)
      When Bush is in serious legal shit, the networks are wringing their hands wondering how he can bounce back. I seem to remember during the Clinton investigations the glee with which they'd speculate when Clinton would have to resign. Some bozos in nice mahogany offices a little worried about their gravy train?
    •  I noticed that (4.00)
      No questions on how the COUNTRY will recover, how our NATIONAL SECURITY will recover, how IRAQ will recover.
      •  they are certainly (none)
        behind the great masses (who are cluing in and no longer reflexively like or trust Bush, despite the MSM's best efforts at corporate media spin) in acknowleding that the emperor is naked.  I even heard one blathering idiot on MSNBC this morning going on and on about how popular Bush is, especially "how well he polls on terra."  

        I guess most newsfolks are too busy talking to anonymous sources to read actual news along with the rest of us.  (Interestingly, papers like USA Today are often much more newsworthy than so-called opinion leaders like the NYT or WaPo.  And they are far less elitist, which may give them an even greater impact in the heartland.)


  •  Yes, And, Yes... (none)
    Can I just say something straight-up here?

    Having Ann Coulter on your network debating the "meaning" of the Fitzgerald investigation isn't relevant. It isn't useful. It's like watching a dog crap to music. There's some percentage of the country that would probably tune in to that too, but it doesn't make it "news" or even "analysis".

    yes, and yes. And, that's all that needs to be said. Coulter is not an "analyst"--Coulter is a polemiscist, a demogogue.

  •  Bingo, Hunter (4.00)
    You hit it out of the park. I was livid that the indictment story broke on CNN to the tune of Joe DiGenova yapping non-stop about fuck-all except trying to mitigate the damage to the neocons. The others on were lawyers who, unlike DiGenova, appeared to have a hint of a brain. I think you are right to blame both sides but it is important to remember that people like Coulter and Limbaugh and DiGenova aren't on either side - they are so far out of any mainstream that they have no right being invited on a news show for balance. They are unbalanced and they show it every time they open their sorry stupid mouths.

    Canada - where a pack of smokes is ten bucks and a heart transplant is free.

    by dpc on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:30:47 PM PST

  •  National security was only a pretense (4.00)
    For scaring people, filling the coffers and marshalling power.

    More effort went into nuking critics than catching Osama bin Laden and Mullah Omar.

    Feel safe yet, Mr. and Mrs. Dumbass in Dumbfuck USA?

    Man will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest. - Denis Diderot

    by Peanut on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:31:06 PM PST

  •  Clap, Clap! That was Great! (none)
    But if the United States stops being divided between the two teams, how will the partisan pundits and personalities earn a living?

    And we still haven't figured out whose side God
    is on, which will be quite the tiebreaker.

    I think we should ride this thing out, even if it's destroying the country. :)

    If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face - forever. [George Orwell]

    by Krush on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:32:16 PM PST

  •  Post Script (none)
    Brooks diagnosis for all those not content with Fitzgerald's so-called clean-bill-of-health:

    "...The question is, why are these people so compulsively overheated? One of the president's top advisers is indicted on serious charges. Why are they incapable of leaving it at that? Why do they have to slather on wild, unsupported charges that do little more than make them look unhinged?

    The answer is found in an essay written about 40 years ago by Richard Hofstadter called "The Paranoid Style in American Politics." Hofstadter argues that sometimes people who are dispossessed, who feel their country has been taken away from them and their kind, develop an angry, suspicious and conspiratorial frame of mind. It is never enough to believe their opponents have committed honest mistakes or have legitimate purposes; they insist on believing in malicious conspiracies.

    "The paranoid spokesman," Hofstadter writes, "sees the fate of conspiracy in apocalyptic terms - he traffics in the birth and death of whole worlds, whole political orders, whole systems of human values. He is always manning the barricades of civilization." Because his opponents are so evil, the conspiracy monger is never content with anything but their total destruction. Failure to achieve this unattainable goal "constantly heightens the paranoid's sense of frustration." Thus, "even partial success leaves him with the same feeling of powerlessness with which he began, and this in turn only strengthens his awareness of the vast and terrifying quality of the enemy he opposes."

    •  For $500 please (none)
      "For $500, please, who are David Brooks, Michael Brown, Dick Cheney, Ann Coulter?"

      "Alex, that would be Who are "People I'd Like to Punch in the Nose?""

      "That is correct!! You move on to the next round!"

    •  But it's NOT paranoia if the neocons really are (none)
      out to "get" us.
      And anyone here who doesn't understand the basic, fundamental, simple truth, that the neocons are out to destroy America, is the one who is delusional.

      "Aure entuluva!" [Day will come again!] -Hurin

      by davidincleveland on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:14:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Fitzgerald was very clear (none)
    He knows Libby was one of the leakers. The law is too vague, and the cover-up- thus far- has been too successful, for him to pursue charges for that crime. He does have the evidence to prove Libby's role in the cover-up. To some extent, he believes that, in itself, is justice- if Libby goes to prison, it doesn't matter whether it was for his role in the leak or for his role in the cover-up: a criminal is going to prison. Maybe he has other cards up his sleeve, maybe he doesn't. But the media is missing the point, and the repug talking points underscore the whole party's moral bankruptcy: a serious crime was committed, and it undermined our national security; the prosecutor is, thus far, unable to indict anyone for it because there has been an effective cover-up. That's the story. Cheney, Rove, and whomever else are in NO WAY vindicated. They may have eluded arrest, but only because they are very competent criminals.
  •  From today's major metropolitan dailies ... (4.00)
    One would get the impression that this has been a terrible strain on the embattled President and that he needs to correct the course of his embattled Presidential ship and shield his administration from further harm and embattlement.  "Real" news would focus on the victim, American democratic governance.  Talking heads on TV (which I don't watch) will speak of the pitfalls facing the second-term President. Reporters identify more with their politico-economic equals than with the American people at large.  
  •  Hunter (4.00)
    You are simply wonderful.

    You said everything I feel. Every single thing.

    These pundits are just a waste of our time and are actually causing serious danger to this country. They muddy the waters so much that people become fed up and don't know what to believe anymore. Then they become cynical, and in turn, they don't even bother to get involved.

    Its dangerous for any democracy to go down that road. Of course, this is the Republican agenda. They know if people get involved, they lose.

    The MSN must stop this. They are engaging in undermining the country.

    Any so-called pundit who goes on national TV and does not express concern that the National Security Advisor to the President of the United States LIED to a Federal Prosecutor at a time of war has no shame. They don't deserve to be on the air, they are clearly against this country, and are polluting the airwaves with their partisan and selfish agenda.

    Oh, Hunter, that was simply magnificent! If only people would listen to you....

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross." -- Sinclair Lewis

    by Dunbar on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:37:11 PM PST

  •  The REAL Death of Irony (4.00)
     How come is it that few, oh-so-very-few, pundits -- and absolutely NONE of the Right Wing Nut Jobs -- mention that:

     1 This fiasco in Iraq was ostensibly premised on the U.S. gov't's fear that a "mushroom cloud" would be "the smoking gun" of Iraqi WMD progams; in other words, that the U.S. would get nuked by Iraq.

     2 That Valerie Plame's job was to track, and/or track-down REAL (not make-believe) nukes or nuclear bomb-making materials.

     3 That the Corruption Administration launched a WAR over make-believe nukes, while . . .

     4 Compromising the career and efforts of a CIA operative who was engaged in keeping us safe from real nuclear threats.

     Please tell me that I'm not the only one who sees this lunacy, or that MSM's seemingly purposeful policy of ignoring it.


    . . . religion is not a syllogism, but a poem. H.L. Mencken

    by BenGoshi on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:37:38 PM PST

    •  But what to do? (none)
      Even we don't talk about Iraq much here because even if we admit that it was at the very least, a mistake, the next question is "Okay, now what?".  Admitting that the United States embarked on an invasion on false pretenses has many repercussions, especially internationally.  With the current administration, this creates problems.  If we are going to admit to ourselves and to other nations that the Iraq invasion was based on deliberate lies, then we had better be ready to stand in front of the United Nations and apologize and beg forgiveness.  I can not see that happening with Bush/Cheney/Bolton.

      So if the Iraq War Lies are accepted publicly then we need to apologize to all of our allies who demand it or lose face and most of our credibility.  And if Bush/Cheney/Bolton won't do that, then all the foreign aid we can afford won't buy us more than a superficial goodwill.  Then what?

  •  Just plain thanks (4.00)
    I haven't even read through the thread of comments as I ususally do. And I comment very little here although I read constantly. This reflects what I am feeling in my heavy heart about the ongoing positioning of everyone involved. I am grateful that Fitzgerald wants the truth, and I do too. But playing politics with every phase just makes me really sad. Thanks Hunter for expressing the anger that lurks inside many of us.
  •  I guess pundits should all do their work pro bono (none)
    don't you think that would take care of the problem?
  •  Even if we cleaned up the mess in DC... (4.00)
    ...we still have the problem with our media, don't we? It's the one element that seems to dampen whatever progress we happen to make; the media hacks are always there to repackage everything with a slant that favors their interests, and not the truth.


    Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. -- Margaret Mead

    by ilona on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:38:26 PM PST

  •  Baseball can be a pretty slow-going game... (4.00) - Ex-Illinois governor Ryan indicted - Dec. 17, 2003

    Consider the above, when/if you read the beneath:

    ArchPundit notes that for long-time Fitzgerald watchers, the pseudonym "Official A" has a familiar ring.

    Familiar Ring to it
    From the AP August 27, 2003, Wednesday, BC cycle

    When asked, Fitzgerald would not comment on whether "Official A" was Ryan.
    From the Chicago Daily Herald April 3, 2002, Wednesday All

    But despite branding two of Ryan's former top aides and his campaign committee as corrupt, Fitzgerald would not say if the investigation will eventually reach Ryan. The vast majority of the corruption uncovered so far happened under his watch when he was secretary of state from 1990 until 1998. The governor has not been accused by prosecutors of any wrongdoing in the past, and Tuesday's indictments did not include him.
    "I cannot answer that question," Fitzgerald said when asked about any Ryan involvement. "We cannot discuss people not charged in the indictment."

    Sun Times June 20, 2002

    Stewart would send bills to Stanley and Doyle for bogus legal work Stewart never performed. Stanley and Doyle would "pay" for the work, when in fact they were passing along bribes through Stewart to Udstuen.
    Stanley also allegedly passed bribes to Udstuen through another person, dubbed "Individual A" in the indictment, in a similar scheme. Individual A was a close friend of Udstuen's and a social acquaintance of Stanley's.

    Posted by ArchPundit on Friday October 28, 2005

    Booman Tribune: The indictment of "Scooter" Libby, ONLY Scooter Libby, and ONLY on investigation- related charges (perjury, obstruction of justice, lying to investigators), is bound to be misinterpreted by ideologues on both sides of the political spectrum.

  •  It's not just about justice, but change (4.00)
    When I canvassed Ohio in the days before the 2004 election, our group's (and many others') phrase was "vote for change."  Well, that didn't work out so well.

    Many have diminished faith in the fairness of our electoral system, but, to my understanding, the judicial branch of government has not yet been wrecked by cronyism.  It changes more slowly and less predictably than the other branches of government, and that's often a good thing.

    So, when a top aide is indicted on crimes of obstructing justice, it serves to both 1) renew our faith that some parts of government are still doing their jobs, and 2) that the public's interest in honest and ethical leadership will be vindicated by the prosecution of those who have betrayed the public trust.

    So yes, Hunter, I'm happy.

    "Even a little dog can piss on a big building." -- Jim Hightower

    by watou on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:39:44 PM PST

  •  People look at me in shock (4.00)
    "You don't own a TV?"
    "What do you do with your time?"
    "Read books, play guitar, correspond with friends on line, blog, go to music shows, write music reviews, watch Monty Python movies with my kids."
    "(Non-plussed) Oh."
    "Yeah, I find I get lied to less when I don't watch TV."

    Thanks Hunter, now I don't have to watch that fool Brooks (not that I was going to anyway).

    Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it. - Mark Twain

    by Rolfyboy6 on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:40:47 PM PST

    •  ...I hear you... (none)
      ...But, 1% of the programming is simply excellent.  You're missing that.  Watching Hitchcock's Rear Window on TCM right now as I blog.  Saw Steve McQueen in Bullitt the other night on the same.  That's about all I watch, but it's intensely good.

      But, by all means, if anyone has a problem in that they can't avoid the other 99% of brain rot crap.  Then by all means please sacrifice the rest and throw the tube in the trash.  Do it now.

      •  1% (4.00)
        Read that again: 1%

        Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it. - Mark Twain

        by Rolfyboy6 on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:13:47 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I can rent every good movie ever made (none)
        online; but usually I can find it free at my [fabulous, wonderful, world-famous] local library. CSPAN is available on the net. I cancelled my cable subscription over a year ago, and put my TV set in a closet. I haven't bothered to put a TV tuner card into my computer, but if the Cavs look really promising for the playoffs I will [I use a projector and a ten-foot-diagonal screen for a second monitor].
        Other than sports, I haven't missed a thing worth watching, and my blood pressure is ten points lower.

        "Aure entuluva!" [Day will come again!] -Hurin

        by davidincleveland on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:19:22 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  "Yeah, I find I get lied to less ... (none)
      ...when I don't watch TV."

      You're still being lied to, you're just pretending it's not happening and apparently relying on all the eagle-eyed activists here at dKos and elsewhere to keep you informed as to when you've been lied to.  

      I have little patience for those who refuse to pay attention to what is happening to our democracy because it's just to ugly or distressing or troubling to focus on.  If only more good, caring, thoughtful, aware German citizens in prewar Germany had paid more attention, Hitler might not've had such an easy rise to power...

      TV is not the only way to get the news that you're being lied to.  There's the radio and there's print media.  But there's no excuse, in my estimation, for not staying acutely informed about what's happening in our names at American citizens.  

      •  Hey wake up (4.00)
        Notice I said read. What a conclusion leaper you are.

        Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it. - Mark Twain

        by Rolfyboy6 on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:41:06 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Reading books (none)
          is good, especially if some of them are the recent spate of excellent exposes and analyses of what's happening in our government and re global political/economic/environmental issues.

          But books are sloooow to come out with The Truth.  Things are happening in our government and geo-political landscape at an increasingly rapid-fire pace.  TV, radio and daily rags are about the only way we can get the most current information that we as informed, involved citizens need (often to take quick action on an issue/event).  

          Unless you just like the more laid-back, laissez-faire, I'll-find-out-abouddit-eventually pace of waiting for a book to be published on some significant event (that might've benefitted from your hands-on involvement, ya never know...).  

          I'm not speaking specifically to you personally, either.  Mostly just expressing my frustration and impatience generally with the attitude you expressed, as I see it so pervasive around me in my community and state, and further.   I believe that many who think like you (and who don't bother to even read books, either) are the reason we lost the last presidential election.

          Yeah, that's my exhortation, too, exactly:  hey, wake up!!

          •  You're gonna find (none)
            what you're looking for from TV watchers? From CNN and Fox? I think you need to look at what you're saying and check it against reality.

            Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it. - Mark Twain

            by Rolfyboy6 on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 10:52:22 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I seldom watch (none)
              CNN  and never Fox (Faux) news.  I do watch MSNBC, I watch Link TV, and news on PBS.

              Throwing out strawmen dummies like CNN and Faux News is your response to all those points I made in my last post?

              What else can I expect from someone who apparently openly professes to like keeping their head in the sand?

              I don't know what it was in what I posted that gave you the idea that I get my news info from CNN and Fox.  DUH.

              •  Must be cause you watch shit like MSNBC (none)
                Well known as a shill.  A TVidiot. who's got their head where? wise up stupid.

                Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it. - Mark Twain

                by Rolfyboy6 on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 12:18:54 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  You wouldn't know (none)
                  because you never watch it.  How would you know?  Actually, MSNBC has had some excellent reporting on the Fitzgerald indictment of Libby and analyses of what it means.  Hardhitting.  Some softballs, but I've seen some really good reporting.

                   And I watch Amy Goodman on Link TV.  Do you even know what Link TV is?  Probably not.

                  But you wouldn't know.  Because you just paint all TV viewing with the same brush, and feel smugly sanctimonious doing it.

                  You are still an uninformed lout, that's obvious from your response to me.   And you want to keep defending your head-in-the-sand, I-don't-have-to-care-because-I-don't-know asinine attitude that you first expressed in this thread.

                  Whatever.  You got nuthin' to add here.  

                  •  What a simple minded tool you are. n/t (none)

                    Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it. - Mark Twain

                    by Rolfyboy6 on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 03:43:43 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  This insult coming from (none)
                      a dolt who professes he/she doesn't bother to ever watch any news on TV.  Just "reads books".    Not even a newspaper mentioned.  Yeah right.  

                      I get my information from as many sources as are available to us today, so that I am ready to take action on behalf of urgent issues immediately.  By your own admission in this thread, you apparently merely <yawn> and feel smug and complacent that you are out of the fray since you don't even know what is going on outside of your pleasant little bubble.  

                      Well, people who live in glass bubbles, bubba, shouldn't throw stones.  

                      Of course you will have the last word here, since all you can do is throw "simple-minded tool" level insults.  You got nuthin' else, do ya, bubba?  Go back to reading your comic books.

  •  And then there is Bill Safire: (none)

    ...And everybody is walking around thinking, "Well, you see?  There was a conspiracy to undermine or uncover an agent."  Well, there wasn't.  It was not.  And he said it very clearly.  And so I think we ought to keep that in mind.  This was a cover-up of a non-crime.

    Another first-class asshole!!!!! (from MTP)

    •  i am picturing (none)
      Little Billy Safire and "Mama" Kay Bailey Hutchison singing a chorus of Fleetwood Mac's "Tell Me Lies" as a dog takes a dump on his shoes.

      He may talk like an idiot, and look like an idiot, but don't let that fool you: he really is an idiot. Send him back to his father and brothers...

      by distributorcap on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:01:21 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Rove dodges the bullet (none)
    Newsweek is reporting that if you deal with more than one person in your job, you're off the hook to remember who said what.
    Two sources close to Rove who asked not to be identified because the probe is ongoing said Luskin presented evidence that gave the prosecutor "pause." One small item was a July 11, 2003, e-mail Rove sent to former press aide Adam Levine saying Levine could come up to his office to discuss a personnel issue. The e-mail was at 11:17 a.m., minutes after Rove had gotten off the phone with Matt Cooper--the same conversation (in which White House critic Joe Wilson's wife's work for the CIA was discussed) that Rove originally failed to disclose to the grand jury. Levine, with whom Rove often discussed his talks with reporters, did immediately go up to see Rove. But as Levine told the FBI last week, Rove never said anything about Cooper. The Levine talk was arguably helpful to one of Luskin's arguments: that, as a senior White House official, Rove dealt with a wide range of matters and might not remember every conversation he has had with journalists. In any case, Fitzgerald made another visit early Friday morning--shortly before the grand jury voted to indict Dick Cheney's top aide, I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby--to the office of James Sharp, President George W. Bush's own lawyer in the case, to tell him the president's closest aide would not be charged. Rove remains in some jeopardy, but the consensus view of lawyers close to the case is that he has probably dodged the bullet.

    I hate it that Rove stays clean.  I hate them all.

    If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything-Mark Twain

    by Desert Rose on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:44:12 PM PST

    •  Not to worry (none)
      Fitz doesn't believe in the "I'm so big and important and busy that I can't be expected to remember every time I commit a felony" defense.  And you can see how well that defense worked for Martha Stewart.  Yes, among the false statements for which Martha was convicted was "I don't remember getting a call from my broker" when it turned out that three days before she said that to federal prosecutors, she had tried to alter a phone record of the call.  

      Yes, sometimes inaccurate statements made under oath are the result of faulty memory, rather than mendacity.

      But given the number of times that Rove had already talked about Wilson by the time he had the Cooper call, and given the amount of publicity about her, the notion that the fact that Rove didn't admit his crime to the next person he talked to doesn't really do it for me, exoneration-wise.

      I think Fitz is the kind of prosecutor I would not be -- I have a terrible poker-face -- and when he received information like this he accepts it impassively and without much comment.  I would bet money that he does not believe it. And nothing about the Levine testimony is probative of whether he "forgot" the conversation with Cooper or deliberately failed to mention it.

      "Mommy, did people know that Bush was stupid when they voted for him?"

      by litigatormom on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:43:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Gads! (4.00)
    So many dummies; so few ventriloquists!

    The self absorbed media mannequins in the pundit class actually seem to believe their own faulty, arrogant and lazy minds are the source of relevant and  original observations on the majorissues of the day, but most of them haven't had an original thought in at least a decade.

    Creatures like Russert and Matthews and Mitchell have become their own biggest fans, and as such see themselves as entitled to pass off whatever they may think as "informed opinion", regardless of how careless or lackadaisical or factually inaccurtate their perspectives might be.

    Simply put, most of these people have nothing to say that has any real meaning. They are well along the road towards irrelevancy, closing the gap on Larry King, [the most irrelevant man in TV as Randi Rhodes referred to him] with astonishing speed.

    Whenever news people create conditions where they themselves are the news, such a situation is proof that they're no longer performing their job. And if they're not performing their job, what's the point of us paying attention to them?

    I'm sure these millionaire pundits still imagine they have great stature in the minds of the "thinking public". If only they knew how low was the regard we hold them in.

    Defeat the sound-bite.

    by sbj on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:44:58 PM PST

    •  they don't care fer chrissake (4.00)
      they don't give a rat's ass what you think of them.
      why does everyone obsess so on these people?
      it is infotainment folks.
      it sells cars and deodorant and other sundry items to people who have only a part time interest in democracy and truth and other things that can't be purchased on ebay.
      tv journalism simply does not work as such
      and never will as long as it is a vehicle for hawking junk.
      it's like going fishing in a mud puddle and then complaining in a long and passionate post about the lack of fish.
      •  I'm not obsessing on these jerks, (none)
        I'm simply pointing out that they're infatuated with themselves.

        As to your contention that they don't care what I/We think about them, I don't think this is necessarily accurate. They may not care so much what you or I, individually, might think of them, but like all narcissists, their egos care very much how they're thought of generally. (I'm speaking about the pundits, not the true sociopaths in the Bush regime itself; I'm speaking about the dummies, not the ventriloquists.) For instance, if Chris Matthews of "Hardball" infamy knew that the thinking public thought David Gregory was a much better host for that show than he, he'd be furious and would retaliate against Gregory.

        Ego and adulation are very much at the center of these creatures lives. That's why they've come to be so bad at what they do.

        Defeat the sound-bite.

        by sbj on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:36:06 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  only one thing in the world worse... (none)
          yes, i understand.
          i guess i was talking in the larger sense regarding the amount of space that is used up on this website talking about "them"...both the guests and the hosts.
          if i was a pundit or host like "sir tweety" and wanted my ego stroked, i would go straight to dailykos.
          there is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about....
  •  Best post ever (none)



    They try to hide the poverty, but the poverty can't be hidden

    by spelunking defenestrator on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:46:21 PM PST

  •  hit back hard (4.00)
    You simply cannot expect the mainstream media to save this democracy...  THEY ARE CRUCIAL ENABLERS AND AMPLIFY THE PROBLEM... An American Circus Maximus but rendered all cuddly like -- "War?  What war?  Corruption?  What corruption?"  Comfortably numb.  

    You have to hit back and hit back hard (thank you, Hunter for your much-needed rants).  Bill Clinton nailed it when he asked democrats to FIGHT BACK or find new jobs.
    Gore and Dean have been yelling loudly and get called "wild-eyed".  So what?  Bring tha noize.

    I dug up an article by Moyers, who would make a GREAT prez by the way-- who really nails problem.  The perfect storm of corporatism, political cowardice, and the ravenous religious right.  Colulter is one hyrdra head of a vast monster that is devouring this democracy.  Three crucial paragraphs here (my emphasis included).  I'm going to include them in full.  KEEP UP THE FIGHT.  TURN UP THE NOISE.

    September 24, 2005
    Reckoning with the God Squad, Bill Moyers
    Fundamentalist bullies cannot be appeased. they must be confronted.

    "The corporate, political and religious right have converged, led by a president who, in his own disdain for science, reason and knowledge, is the most powerful fundamentalist in American history. And radicals on the Christian right are now the dominant force in America's governing party. They control much of the U.S. government and are on the verge of having it all. Without them the government would not be in the hands of people who don't believe in government. They are culpable in upholding a system of class and race in which, as we saw last week, the rich escape and the poor are left behind. And they are on a crusade against government "of, by, and for the people" in favor of one based on Biblical authority. So the Grand Old Party-the GOP-has become God's Own Party, its ranks made up of God's Own People "marching as to war."

    It has to be said that their success has come in no small part because of our acquiescence and timidity. Our democratic values are imperiled because too many people of reason are willing to appease irrational people just because they are pious. Republican moderates tried appeasement and survive today only in gulags set aside for them by the Karl Roves, Bill Frists and Tom DeLays. Democrats are divided and paralyzed, afraid that if they take on the organized radical right they will lose what little power they have.

    As I look back on the conflicts and clamor of our boisterous past, one lesson about democracy stands above all others: Bullies-political bullies, economic bullies and religious bullies-cannot be appeased; they have to be opposed with a stubbornness to match their own. This is never easy; these guys don't fight fair; "Robert's Rules of Order" is not one of their holy texts. But freedom on any front-and especially freedom of conscience-never comes to those who rock and wait, hoping someone else will do the heavy lifting."

    •  "Clinton nailed it ... FIGHT BACK" (4.00)
      From David Olive in this morning's Toronto Star:

      As Clinton, the only multiple-term Democratic president since FDR, once said: "When someone is beating you over the head with a hammer, take out a meat cleaver and cut off their hand."

      "Injustice wears ever the same harsh face wherever it shows itself." - Ralph Ellison

      by KateCrashes on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:04:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  He did nail it-- Heracles-style-- and nonviolently (none)
        That was the great thing about Clinton.
        He'd (metaphorically) hack off the head of an attacking hydra, and find a way to cauterize the wound, Heracles-style, so it wouldn't grow back.  But this right-wing hydra hit machine is so vast...

        Gandhi "hit back" in a nonviolent manner.
        King "hit back" in a nonviolent manner.
        Clinton hit back the best way he could-- verbally.
        Wise words and nonviolence are the answer.  These are really trying times....  Cindy Sheehan.  Nonviolence.   Cindy speaks volumes... Way more than our silent and increasingly spineless Dems.

  •  "Honor and Integrity" what a crock!! (4.00)
    I have been listening to GOP operatives in the MSCM claiming that outing a covert agent was just "politics as usual in DC"


    That might hold if only this particular administration did not proclaim itself morally superior to that of the previous resident of the WH- over and over and over again in two campaigns.

    I find it ironic, and yes, infuriating, that patriotism and moral superiority are bandied about by the current GOP leadership as being the sole domain of the Bush GOP.

    Meanwhile, undermining our national security by waging a phony and illegal war based on lies and doctored evidence is just fine and dandy. Same for revealing the identity of a WMD specialized covert CIA agent during a time of war.

    The hypocrisy is mind boggling to say the least. And the more the profess the irrelevance of their own treasonist misdeeds, the worse they look.

    Bush and Cheney claim that Libby is entitled to a day in court before judgement, yet deny any other American the same right if that American is deemed an enemy of the President.

    It begins to look more and more that there really are two Americas- one to which the rules do not apply (above the law) and one to which they do.

    So it is OKAY for the top advisors to the VP and the Pres to have direct involvement in an act of treason that strikes at the very heart of the CIA, the ability of the CIA to do its job, and the ability of the intelligence community to protect our country?

    It is okay to wage an illegal war based on non existent WMD and lies about supposed threats?

    It is okay to launder money in order to facilitate illegal campaign contributions in order to force the GOP into a position of majority in the Hosue of Reps?

    It is okay to lie, cheat, steal, kill, and commit treason- as long as it is the GOP that is doing it?

    How much more of this shit will America tolerate?

    What will it take for Dems in Congress to simply REFUSE to play ball with this corrupt leadership?

    How many more high crimes must be exposed before the moderate GOP finally say "enough" and declare their fealty to the US Constitution and NOT the sitting resident?

    One thing has become crystal clear in the past few weeks- the GOP does not care about the Law or our national security. Not one whit. All they care about is keeping power and maintaining the illusion that they are superior to the alternative.

    Its not just the pundits- its the entire system.

    It is corrupt, rotten to the core, and even way out here on the far left coast- I can smell the rank odor eminating from Halls of Congress and the WH.

    It is foul.

    Honor and integrity, my ass.

    "As individual fingers we can easily be broken, but all together, we make a mighty fist" Watanka Tatanka (Sitting Bull)

    by wild salmon on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:49:10 PM PST

  •  this is a pretty accurate description (4.00)
    of Coulter:

    "It's like watching a dog crap to music"


    Tarheel born, tarheel bred! And when I die, I'll be tarheel dead.

    by NCYellowDog on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:51:18 PM PST

  •  Friday was a bad day, but also a good one (none)
    It was a bad day for all the reasons you cite, Hunter -- the worries the indictment raises about the Administration's priorities, the unnecessary national cost and risk we bear because of the Administration's misadventure in Iraq, and the serious accusation, now formal, that an official in the Administration felt he could lie to the American people, to name a few.

    But it was a good day, too.  Not because an indictment is a cause for celebration; I agree with you, Hunter, that an indictment in the Administration is a cause for shame, even if it isn't the Administration we wanted in the White House.  But it was a good day because it affirms that this is our America after all.  We still have tough, professional prosecutors like Mr. Fitzgerald, we have the political will to appoint them, we have citizens with the fortitude to sit on grand juries and return indictments if it's necessary, and we have the national stomach to look the matter in the face.  It was a good day because it reminded us that we still believe that those in power may not lie to us without limit, and we still have the national will to make that principle stick.  And it was a good day because nowhere in the discourse have we fogotten that whatever we may think, we don't yet know the facts about what happened.  But we'll now begin to find out, and in the right way.  At least in the case of the allegations against Mr. Libby, we'll have a trial -- a real trial, a fair trial, with all the protections we believe defendants should enjoy.  It was a good day because it affirmed that we can still do these things properly, and let the chips fall where they may.

  •  60 Minutes (none)
    The Exposure of Valerie Plame

    If you missed the program, take some time to read the article.

    On a side note, I loved Proncess Di and thought Prince Charles was an ass. My, how times have changed. Now I'm wishing he could take a time out from being prince and give being president a shot. Give him a temporary exemption on that pesky "matural born citizen" thing and see how he turns the country around in four years. Or maybe he could tutor some democrats on the environment and caring for your people.

    One goose, fully cooked. One gander, gun to his head.

    by PatsBard on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:54:48 PM PST

  •  Bravo Hunter (none)
    I TOTALLY agree.  I turned on the TV and it was on MSNBC (probably b/c I was watching Oblerman the other night) anyway I listened to Hardball for about 30 seconds and I had to press mute while I figured out what else was on.  

    The most annoying thing is that all these pundits speak with such arrogant certainty.  As if there is NO WAY that they are wrong and we should not even suggest it.  

    Its not easy being a Floridian.

    by lawstudent922 on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:54:56 PM PST

  •  Lying (4.00)
    As most of you know from a diary I posted about six months ago, I used to be an attorney and I committed a felony by "borrowing" money from my trust account.  I always thought I could pay it back, but I couldn't.  Thus, I got charged with a felony.  The detective investigating the case phoned me and asked for information.  I sang like a canary. I not only admitted my wrongdoing, but gave him  all the information regarding the trust account and provided him with bank statements.  (I was not under oath.)  When I had to meet with the probation department prior to sentencing, I told the truth, although I was not under oath.  The person interviewing me asked me if I had ever used drugs.  I told her that I  smoked pot about once every five years. Please note that there was never any evidence of me every having smoked pot.  My statement was strictly gratitious.  Actually, that came back to bite me in the butt because the probation report mentioned my "drug problem."  That resulted in my being tested for drugs while on parole.  It was no big deal.  Telling the truth makes life a lot easier.  No complicated lies to have to remember.  

    We cannot defend freedom abroad by deserting it at home. ~Edward R. Murrow

    by elveta on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:54:57 PM PST

    •  But you felt bad about what you did. (none)

      I think 'guilt' to these guys is a strictly legal term and not something they have much experience personally.

      A closer analogy would be Elveta versus Tom and Bernadette Noe.  Elveta 'borrowed' some money from a client's account(for personal use?) intending to pay it back.  Noe&Noe apparently 'borrowed' some money from a client's account to give to the Bush campaign.  No one has any idea if the Noes planned on 'putting the money back'.  I can't wait to see all the financial dealings laid out.  I believe the BWC account is $millions short.  Considering that the account started at $50 million, that's a significant portion!

      •  Yes (none)
        I felt bad about what I did.  I knew I was "guilty" and I never denied it.  I always thought it was bad enough that I did it; I was not about to compound my guilt by lying about it.

        We cannot defend freedom abroad by deserting it at home. ~Edward R. Murrow

        by elveta on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:55:42 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Best front page story (none)
    I've read in ages. Kudos!

    And how about all those stories about this being a typical second term downswing? Garbage. This second term is exceptional, because this first term was not so unusual. Calling this a cyclical downswing is like saying the Russian Revolution happening was one of those off weeks for the Czar.

  •  "The Real Deal" (none)
    We need a new show called something like "The Real Deal".  It would start with a brief cartoon of two South Park-looking characters blithering the obvious talking points for 5 seconds each or less, after which the show would commence with real people saying real things.  

    • "Only one indictment? Bush will be back on track by Monday."
    • "Bush isn't smart enough to have understood what was going on, but he should be impeached anyway."
    - "And now for the Real Deal".  

    Ah, but where will the media find real people?

    Power corrupts. Hey, let's learn it the hard way!

    by Bob Love on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 05:59:05 PM PST

  •  A-F'n-Men! (none)
    You tell it to 'em girlfriend!

    The GOP Love the soldiers like they love children: Seen but not heard.

    by DawnG on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:02:33 PM PST

  •  And what does "peggy" write about (none)
    The "elites" and how THEY are responsible for the destruction of our society.

    The "elite" is the boogeyman in her GOP straw-man argument. A building up of those things that are wrong with 'murka" but that are NOT the fault of the "republicans" in the senate and the house and the courts and the bureacracy and EVERYTHING ELSE they own and control...

    She blames the "elites" for us "not having a 'marriage ammendment' answer"?

    Oh and our "teens being destroyed by the popular culture in which we are raising them." is also the fault of the "elites"

    NO! It's those damn "elites"! You know who they are! The "LIBERALS" (say it with a sneer and a throaty groan to really make your point!)

    Yes, it's not "dubya" or the wars they got us into! The scandals and fraud in those greedy corporations!

    Why it's those "Liberals!"  you know, the "elites!"

    She is the MASTER of such witty straw-man argument. She practically ran the GOP assault against the "liberal media" by helping her corporate brethren CONTROL IT for two TERMS!

    She has no one to blame but herself for the disgusting mess we're in...


  •  No Party, Maybe (none)
    And there won't be much to celebrate even when this whole sorry mess is finally done and over with.

    What will be good, at the end, is that the whole sorry mess IS finally done AND over with and that, perhaps as we haven't yet seemed to do with Vietnam, Watergate, and the Iran-Contra Affair, perhaps when all is said and done and indictments and sentences and resignations and impeachments have been doled out, we will be able to take stock as a nation and come up with some lessons learned.

    I want to find out what happened, and why.

    To get to this point is to have come to something good, Hunter.

    Because to be at this point is to begin to know the truth.

    I celebrate the fact that for a few minutes on Friday Patrick Fitzgerald managed to communicate the truth via television.  I hope these moments inspire other truth-tellers in government and the media to speak up.  Because what he did was far better than what all the spinmeisters have ever done.

  •  Hunter you're a bloody idiot (none)
    An absolute fucking putty-brained idiot.

    There's no way anyone could ever say something funnier than:

    It's like watching a dog crap to music.

    You've completely blown it now. It's all downhill from here. The entire future of human existence will now be a series of glass-jawed punchlines and wistful longings for cackles lost.

    Thanks. Thanks a fucking million. Idiot.

    The rest of the diary was spot on though.

  •  Respectfully disagree (none)
    I remember how hard we were all trying to get the MSM to notice the Downing Street Memo. For months we investigated it and kept it alive right here in the blogoshphere. Many blogs kept it brewing until  finally, after months and months, the MSM picked it up and began reporting on it. There were even hearings on .

    But it all disappeared from the radar shortly thereafter. The matter, somehow was done, it had its 15 minutes, and nothing came of it.

    The fact that we have an indictment does more for the story of Iraq than we could ever have with all the blogs combined.

    It is now the main story of the MSM, and will be, and it wouldn't have happened without an indictment.

    We can use this to unravel the whole story. But had there been no indictment, this story would have disappeared, and we would all be just as frustrated as we were by Diebold, by the kids not showing up to vote in 04, and by the Downing Street Minutes.

    So in my mind this is a victory, cause now we have the vehicle to talk about it on a massive scale. And the MSM probably won't let it go,

    You are awareness, disguised as a person - Eckhart Tolle

    by steelman on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:09:19 PM PST

  •  Treason (4.00)
         This was an attack on the CIA. What were the forces behind this attack? The U. S. Executive branch? I think that I. Scooter when facing 30 years hard time might decide to take a few singing lessons. This affair is far from OVER. Mr. Fitzgerald is a diliberate professional.

    PS Belzer while on Real Time with Bill Mahar when refering to Ms. Coulter called her "that facist party doll."

  •  Whew! (4.00)
    I am so glad someone said it. I feel much better for having read it.

    If a government is going to expose the identities of its own covert agents, then they might as well shut the entire intelligence gathering agency down and be done with it.

    It is not only unethical to do such a thing. It is not only illegal. It is not only evil, wicked, vile. It is insane. It is an insane thing to do. It is an insane thing to try to defend such an insane thing.

    But, I'm getting worked up again.

  •  Joining the Chorus (none)
    Substantively, your rant's A-1.  But add me to the chorus of those still reeling from the Coulter-dog crap-music analogy.  That image will forever come to mind when someone mentions her name.  I'm changed.  And not worthy.  If the below isn't sufficient attribution, lemme know.  

    Watching Ann Coulter debate Plamegate is like watching a dog crap to music.  Hunter

  •  This group of self-serving sycophants... (4.00)
    ... with their incestuous ties to Washington politicians, organizations and lobbying firms are so out of touch with the rest of us out here in America that their reliable-as-Old-Faithful vomit-spewing now passes by unnoticed by the legions of citizens who are trying to figure out how to afford healthcare, what to do in retiremnet now that our pensions have been wiped out, and how to pay for our kids' college educations.

    These festering sores are irrelevant, their sole pupose being to shove their noses up the rectums of those whose favor they seek to curry.

    A pox on them all.

    If I had a Sunday morning political show, every week, I'd assemble a cross-section of regular Joes and Josephines from around the country to ask them what their weeks were like, what problems they're facing, and what they think the government -- that these citizens fund through their hard work -- can or cannot do to help them.

    Now that would be an interesting program.

  •  B.T. Barnum (none)

    Moved the act from the tent to the newsroom.  Much more profitable now.

    Now in ring one.....

  •  Finding some semblence of joy (none)
    amidst misery, is common to the human spirit...and enables a single individual to empower themselves.  I've always felt that - that is why so many pockets of humanity, who live in poverty, have so many children, they are looking for something simple, truthful, loving, sweet, and everlasting...something to bear witness, after they're gone, to their reality....

    Don't be too hard on people feeling joyous, because the scum in DC, are at least potentially, GOING DOWN.

    What an excellent day for an Excorcism... SCI/Kenyon

    by DianeL on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:19:56 PM PST

  •  Thank you (none)
    I agree 100% with all of this. Neither side has a win, and the only thing we can be absolutely sure of is that more than half the political pundits out there need to find some other line of work. I am sick of them. Not just the right wingers, either. I'm tired of the frenzy that is produced every time someone in D.C. has flatulence. They are more interested in being celebrities than they are being useful.
  •  Here's my two cents... (none)
    I read the opinion of the pundits but come to a different conclusion than the writer. What is needed is a willingness at this point in time to stick the dagger in the rotting flesh of the party in power as deeply as possible and twist with all your might until you get the Constitution back on track. Being upset at the circumstances and not demanding that the Democratic party push the fascists off the cliff that their bringing the entire country to like a bunch of lemmings is insanity. Sure it's okay to feel bad but do you think if the shoe was on the other foot that the Weekly Standard or the WSJ would be "upset" about the political climate and the media's reaction to it? Grow up.
  •  Excuse Me, Hunter (none)
    Watching a dog crap to music is art, watching Ann Coulter is not, unless she craps to music.

    Fox News is a propaganda outlet of the Republican Party - DNC Chair Howard Dean

    by easong on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 06:25:17 PM PST

  •  Bush's chickens come home to roost:poll (none)

    Latest poll reported in Washington Post Oct 30 shows Bush administration is plummeting in public opinion. A combination of events are dereailing Bush's second term. Bush's chickens are coming home to roost. The indictment of Cheney's Chief of staff is just the tip of the iceberg. Combined with the Iraq debacle and the inept handling of Hurricane Katrina, the ethical issue is now posing major problems for Bush and his cronies.

  •  Word (none)
    Hunter, you rock.  You always say what I wish I could.  You're totally right.  Thanks for pointing out that there's nothing at all to celebrate here, really.  Except the rule of law.  Love that phrase these days fer shure!

    Cheers, y'all!

  •  Time to use social pressure (none)
    I have reached the point where I read a post without checking the name all of a sudden I realize, why it's Hunter. There is that distinct imprint of a pressure cooker with the lid about to fly off. And I like it.

    Again, I would like to emphasize that we have to let our friends, neighbors, co-workers and relatives know that if they listen to the likes of Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and what ever talk radio wing nut you've got going on and they bring these babblings into the discussion, it's over.

    The real satisfaction they get out of listening to this political porno is using it on us. Let them know you will be willing to talk issues with someone who has studied the topic -- even if they don't agree with you.

    But when they bring on this retarded kindergarten nonsense into the chat, they have lost their validity. Right wing radio is a place where you find lies, distortion and out and out snake oil. Let them know that politics is anactivity for adults.

    Also let them know that you want to deal with people on political issues who have some self-respect. Point out that the policies advocated by this group of gas bags is undermining not only their future, but those of their families. Any one who respects themself will not undermine their own self-interest.

    Then cut them off and watch the steam blow out of their ears, but avoid all temptation to engage further.

  •  in short (none)
    The short answer to your questions is that the PNAC got itself  into power and made 9/11 happen to ready us for war.
  •  A Strange Ease (none)
    Settled over me on Friday afternoon.  This has been my least Kos, least pundit, least paper, least conversation weekend in some time on matters political.  

    Which is not to say I think this unimportant, or that I do not care.  Rather, the blogs, the pundits, the spinsters... I think what I saw and read (the indictments) on Friday made them all irrelevant to the course of events for the first time in many years.  This thing has a life, and it's not going to be controllable by spin, and the pundits make themselves more laughable by the day.  

    For my Kos reading tonight, this is the only Plame thread I'm checking out - mostly because I love reading Hunter.  Tell me about Keane, about 06, OK maybe about Harry Reid's take, but that's all.  I'll get back to the Plame topic, maybe I'll even obsess on it like early last week, and I know it's gigantic - it's about war afterall.  

    But for once, there seems to be a competent player in Mr. Fitzgerald, and by god this country better change directions whether he's done or he takes the hold house of cards down.  

  •  One small indictment of a man ... (none)
    ... one giant glimmer of hope for America!
  •  everytime I see Coulter from now on .. (none)
    now burning into my mind the urge to get a pooper scooper out. That was a brilliant post.

    The tee shirt companies will have a new product the "Ann Coulter pooper scooper",  before we know it.

    As far as the 'celebration' and jokes go, even the Russians make jokes about Stalin .. humor good. Even if it is gallows humor.



    *Old definition:

    "a person who knows a lot about a particular subject and is therefore often asked to give an opinion about it. A learned person."

    New definition:

    "rarely [obs.], a person who knows a lot about a particular subject and is therefore often asked to give an opinion about it. A learned person.

    More commonly, a shill, a partisan hack, a  paid political operative or someone selling a book."


    How did this come about? By the making of electronic journalism, specifically TV and radio news departments into 'profit centers'.

    How do we get back to the days of Murrow?
    Can we?

  •  Nothing good? (none)
    Finding the brakes on the car before it goes off the cliff is unequivocally good.

    Pre-empting mass murder & torture is unequivocally good.

    Justice & Truth are unequivocally good.

    Being humane...

    My guts tell me this administration is unequivocally bad; evil, really.  The slightest indications that their abusive, tyrannical, thieving, murderous grasp on power is slipping, whether it comes in the form of a DC march, a poll number, a great diary, or an indictment, gives me unequivocal joy.  Cheney et al are oppression itself.  It is only natural that their extirpation brings elation.  

  •  How to get rid of Anne Coulter (none)
    SHUT up!  It's easy.  Don't ruminate about her, don't write LTE's about her, for God's sake don't write to Fox or a million blogs that she's shit.  She is.  We know that.  How do you think Father Coughlin rose to power in the 30's, or Limbaugh in the 80's?  People thought about some catchy phrase, and even though it was a little outre, well, by golly, it makes sense - and it's funny.  I'm gonna tell my friends!

    Please, in the words of Jon Stewart:"Stop.  Just ...stop it."  No letters, blogs, yada yada yada.  These creatures feed off the publicity you gave them.  Just - stop it.  And she'll disappear like used tissue.

  •  You're wrong... (none)
    ...I would MUCH rather watch a dog crap to music.

    In fact when I read it, I wanted to know which channel.

    ...what?...oh Coulter? Fuck that bitch!

    [ Anyone who thinks my bark is worse than my bite, has never seen me bite. ]

    by dj angst on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:00:43 PM PST

  •  Vote on (none)
    I am still steaming because Lou Dobbs has not apologized yet for his smarmy performance with Judy Miller, who we have learned was supporting the lies that took us to war and, possibly, abetting treason.

    Help put pressure on Lou by going to his website,
    and voting on his question of the day:  Do you think the results are worth the two year investigation which cost millions of dollars?

    No mention of Ken Starr, but then, he's a national icon.

    Demand Accountability.

    by stlawrence on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:01:07 PM PST

    •  Also e-mail him (none)
      and tell him that Fitzgerald's two-year investigation cost less than one million, somewhere around 700,000 dollars.

      Contrasted with Starr's, which cost 40 million. There's "millions" for you, lots of them.

      The poll should not only be pulled but he should correct the misinformation he's now disseminated through it.

  •  Former fed prosecutor/actual analysis not pundity (none)
    From TomDispatch comes another brand new piece from former federal prosecutor Elizabeth de la Vega, whose analysis of the Libby indictment TomDispatch posted on Friday.  She now turns to the larger administration picture in what is the cover story of this week's Nation Magazine -- a piece being shared with, and released on-line by, Tomdispatch.
      In "The White House Criminal Conspiracy" she turns to the question of how to make the Bush administration accountable for having defrauded the American people into a war. Her striking exploration offers a potential new
    legal avenue that could force Bush & Co. to take responsibility for their actions. It's one of the most important pieces Tomdispatch has ever
    distributed, not to speak of an ingenious approach, the equivalent of getting Al Capone for evading his taxes, and it should be followed up.
  •  And the Winston Smith/Newspeak Award goes to... (none)
    Hunter ~ I have an (modest) antidote for - at least - coping with the irony of Pundit Overload:

    We should collectively announce a weekly Winston Smith Newspeak award (perhaps even in conjuction with others - like Crooks & Liars or Media Matters) - perhaps placing journalists as a focal point in a "Hall of Doublethink Shame" might have some slight modicum of influence, over the course of all of this?

    Deriving my inspiration from an old Kristof columnm, and wondered if we might do something along these lines (perhaps never more pertinent than during this moment in history):

    Announcing An Award For Greed  
    By NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF (NYT) 778 words
    Published: August 14, 2005

    I'm pleased to announce the first annual Michael Eisner Award for Corporate Misgovernance.
    Last week, a Delaware judge sent a warning shot over corporate boards everywhere, chastising Mr. Eisner, the C.E.O. of the Walt Disney Company, for having ''enthroned himself as the omnipotent and infallible monarch of his personal Magic Kingdom.'' Ultimately, however, the judge turned down a shareholder suit against the Disney board for giving Michael Ovitz a $140 million severance package as a reward for having failed catastrophically in just 14 months as the company's president.

    So I've decided to offer my own prize for executive greed. My aim is to honor those who, in the spirit of Mr. Eisner's pioneering achievements in rapacity, have been so visionary in ripping off shareholders and aggrandizing themselves that they deserve special recognition.

    The winner of the Eisner award will receive a shower curtain, in honor of the $6,000 floral-patterned shower curtain that Tyco's shareholders unwittingly bought for their former C.E.O., Dennis Kozlowski. This year's grand-prize shower curtain is a lovely translucent model that comes with metal grommets to prevent tearing, suction cups to stick to the wall, and even an antimildew treatment! And it cost just $5.96.

    There were many strong candidates to receive this shower curtain.

    •  The Winston Smith/Newspeak Award (none)
      This is a brilliant suggestion.  We could have one every week.  Someone should nominate the candidates, quoting the qualifying Newspeak statement, and then we vote.

      Maybe we could get Keith Olbermann to mention it on his show, right after he does "Worst Person in the World"?

      "Mommy, did people know that Bush was stupid when they voted for him?"

      by litigatormom on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:54:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Tucker Carlson (none)
    One pundit I have been reacting to in a similar way to Hunter is Tucker Carlson, and it is not only because I can see how pathetic he is floundering around with these indefensible talking points, it's because I can relate to him. He's a few years older than me. He's got kids. Even though he is annoying I do not have a deep seeded hatred of him. I just think he's foolish. He's not a pompous middle aged moralizing culture warrior like Ann Coulter. He's just a geek with a bowtie and a fondness for the Reagan years. And he is selling his values down the river for loyalty to people that wouldn't mind sending him to jail so long as it kept them from being indicted. That is what so sad about it. The excuses people make for those who would betray them, out of ignorance, or fear, or denial. Do they realize how pathetic they sound? And standing up for a guy who has been accused of five counts of perjury and obstruction of justice? And these people call those who would commit such a crime "patriots"? They make fools not only out of those who may believe their words, but even more out of themselves. As ordinary Americans you at here in the blogosphere have to realize that this is big. And it is not going away. We have to keep on pushing. Not out of spite. We have to do it for the benefit of this country. We have to keep pushing harder and harder and harder for our values. We are going to have to fight them until they break. They are getting there, but they aren't there yet. And we are going to have to reach out to the Tucker Carlsons we know and tell them as fellow citizens, and maybe even friends, that it's not worth sticking up for a self-centered fraternity that doesn't care about you or me. They only care about themselves. And they've been called on it. And we are going to continue to call them on it.

    You go to war with the defense secretary you have, not the defense secretary you might want or wish to have.

    by Bill Blanc on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:25:43 PM PST

  •  The Music of Excrement (none)
    "Having Ann Coulter on your network debating the "meaning" of the Fitzgerald investigation isn't relevant. It isn't useful. It's like watching a dog crap to music."


  •  Hunter, I don't know you but I always (none)
    am in awe of your incredible way with words.

    A dog crap to music

    Doughy vindication

    DAMN Hunter, that is excellent writing.  Thank you for slicing through bullshit with a super-whetted and elegant knife.

  •  Great post, but... (none)

       "Democratic professional spinners"?

       They have those? Where???

    Republicans oppose abortion -- it happens eighteen years too early.

    by Buzzer on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 07:30:21 PM PST

  •  Thank you Hunter (none)

    For saying all of this so well. I too am sick and tired of corruption being viewed as somehow "normal" - or those who engage in corruption trying to sell to us that they even HAVE "moral values"....

    While I DO feel vindicated I am also very, very sad that our nation has fallen so far...

  •  your (none)
    last two fp'd diaries have been terrific. keep it up; i love it.
  •  Pundit Overload (none)
    Great venting by Hunter!  Couldn't have said it better my self.  Ok, so Scooter has fallen on his sword.  It would be great if Fitz got Rove but Scooter on trial will ultimately get us closer to the truth.  I would ask anyone just how soon that could be?  Apparently if he is arraigned in the next few weeks the judge could set a trial date.  If that date is months from now then a lot of momentum will have been lost as the "pundits" that piss off Hunter and millions of others will be "punditing" on the latest "missing white woman".  If the trial date is soon say less then 3 months Bushco will have to be on edge as they decide how to plan for their spin of it.  Now there is a lot of conjecture that he will never go to trial.  I agree with a lot of others that Fitz has set up a situation that could put pressure on a lot of witnesses who up until now testified in secrecy but would have to tell the truth in public if there was a trial.  They might plea bargain or flip to cover there asses.  Wishful thinking on my part? Comments?
  •  I'm so sorry... (none) lost me at the third sentence. Now I will go to bed trying to decide,"what would be the appropriate music to accompany a crapping dog".

    I also get easily distracted by bright shiny bad.

  •  I haven't cable... (none)
    ...for the past 6 months for this precise reason.

    Russ Feingold for President!

    by Basil on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 08:09:48 PM PST

  •  Libby indictment (none)
    What I want to say is why don't the Democrats say to the American people, "If the Republicans have to smear someone and lie to cover it up in order to justify going to war in Iraq, then obviously this war is WRONG."

    Until Dems keep on making that statement, the only thing accomplished is we got rid of Libby and maybe get rid of Rove and/or Cheney.  So how do we end the war?  How do we end the Republican control of Congress and the White House?  We keep telling the American people that they smeared and they lied in order to go to war.  Therefore, it can't be much of a war.

    Say it over and over again.  

  •  Bravo! n/t (none)

    The greatest blessing bestowed on a people is the absence of ignorance in public office. - Confucius

    by cavanaghjam on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 08:12:12 PM PST

  •  Hunter's latest (4.00)
    two things we should recognize and keep conscious of:

    1. there are and have been a number of republicans who have challenged the bush administration and it's policies. we would do well to recognize them and make the distinction between bush administration sycophants and republicans who have some degree of integrity. mccain and chuck hagel come to mind as well as brent scowcroft. scowcroft fired a shot across the bow this week in the new yorker magazine. don't paint them all with the same brush. we need them. god knows the democrats haven't set much of a shining example to follow.

    2. the bush administration and the more sinister neocon cadre (both actually in the government or lurking at the "think" tanks nearby) are not stupid (any more than the rest of us) and they are a very determined, focused bunch. they are zealous and some of them, one could argue, clinically insane. in short they are not pushovers and will not give up ONE OUNCE of power or influence that isn't ripped from their grasp. this dedication to get where they are now is proof of what i am saying. the arrogant zeal which has brought them to power may prove to be the fatal flaw that ends their reign BUT, IT IS BY NO MEANS ASSURED. we must be vigilant and equally focused to end their stranglehold on the center of power or they will remain, with some casualties perhaps, in power or in reach of it. we can blog all we want - and it is important - but we must do much, much more. are you ready?
    •  Conservative vs. neoconservative . . . (none)
      The neos are pretty much a bunch of statist fascisti who aren't real conservatives in any sense.  They've hijacked the conservative name.  Read NRO if you can stomach it, and you'll note, they hate being called "neoconservatives."  So we should do that a lot more!
    •  Well said Hunter & Fahrender (none)
      The thing I really liked watching Fitz was his emphasis on truth, "the engine of our justice system" (or something close to that).  It's good for Maericans to be reminded that not all is partisan politics.  Good people can rise above that and seek truth.  Some of those people are political (Reps and Dems), but can see thru the partisan cloud and really try to do good our system of government and law.  It is indeed good to recognize them.
  • are right (none)
    Throughout the entire pundit brigade -- blogosphere included -- everyone is trying to decide whether or not the Fitzgerald indictments are a "victory" for their side or the other side. It's not, OK? It's just not. There is nothing good or victorious about this situation, for either side. Nothing. Nothing.

    I've commented on this and why I dislike the term "Fitzmas".  The gravity of the situation, its implications and its partisanship (on either side) detracts from the severity of the situation.  You tell a Republican bout Delay and they say, everyone does it.  Why does this make it acceptable?

    We need to focus on exactly what you've stated.  What happened, why did it happen, and how can justice be served.

    The bigger story, which others have touched on, is the WHY.  The lying to get the country to go to war.  The terrible costs to the Iraqis and our soldiers.

    As best I understand the situation, it seems fairly clear that the lies and the "outing" were really geared towards stifling criticism of dissent.  The media (including some of the newer darlings like Anderson Cooper and Aaron Brown) let the administration slide.  Otherwise it could have brought the voices of dissent and reason to the forefront of the issue and force the administration to not be able to simply smear EVERYONE.

    I wonder how they live with that on their conscience.

    It isn't the issue of the small fish or frying Rove or Libby etc.  It is the depths to which idealogues have hijacked OUR government.

  •  The indictment laid out a conspiracy . . . (none)
    to out Mrs. Wilson as a background to Libby's lies.  That's been ignored by the talking heads.
  •  Bush deserves a Mulligan? (none)
    This is the quote of the day for me.

    Former Reagan White House Chief of Staff Ken Duberstein on MTP:

    Every second-term president deserves a mulligan, deserves a redo.  It is time to reset and re-calibrate, and I think this is the time over the next three months that George Bush has to do that and move forward.

    In golf, a Mulligan is a shot retaken due to a player's poor skill or general incompetence. In other words, it's cheating. Duberstein is suggesting that if someone in Bush's White House broke the rules by outing a CIA NOC to conceal the fact that they broke the rules by lying to the American people about reasons for war, the president should be allowed to break the rules so he will not be held accountable for breaking the rules.

    Whatever it takes to win, baby.

  •  One thing (none)
    I want one thing out of this entire investigation. I want to find out what happened, and why.

    Two. I want two things out of this investigation.

    Amongst the things...

    Nobody expects the Plamegate deposition...



  •  Hunter, (none)
    Have you ever thought of submitting a verbal rant to AAR or Ed Schultz about once a week?  This is the third one of yours that I've read that just left me sad for my own lack of articulation.

    In prison, Tom Delay will no doubt be called 'the Hummer' by his fellow convicts.

    by soonergrunt on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 09:18:17 PM PST

  •  I am tired of all the pundits and politicians too (none)
    Before the indictments were even publicly announced. There were all sorts of contradicting rumors flying about. Once they were made public all the pundits and politicians start putting thier spin on it.

    Both parties are politicizing the whole incident and the trial hasn't even started. Its pretty annoying. Fitzgerald seems to be a fair and dedicated prosecutor.And I doubt he will let the political hoopla take place in the courtroom. So whats the point of all the hype and spin?

    I am tired of stupid pundits and politicians trying to influence the general public of what to think of the circumstance. Are they more knowledgable then anyone else? Just because they sit in front of a TV Camera are they supposed to be smarter then the average joe? Maybe the average joe living outside the bubble of the beltway is alot smarter then the pundits think.

    "No one has a finer command of language than the person who keeps his mouth shut."- Sam Rayburn, Former Speaker of the House

    by LeftistIndependent on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 09:36:50 PM PST

  •  These are always the two choices with (none)
    this bunch: Are they just deeply, stupidly, dangerously incompetent, or did they do it on purpose?
  •  Simple solution: Turn off TV (none)
    I don't even have one in the house.

    End of frustration. Try it, you'll like it.

    In troubling times, it's good to read true stories about real people doing good things. HeroicStories, free

    by AllisonInSeattle on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 09:55:02 PM PST

  •  Respectfully I disagree (none)
    On two points, actually.

    Anyone who has a constipated indoor dog would agree that watching it "crap to the 1812 overture" mean a  hell of a lot- specifically, sanity within  small olfactory proximity. That, my friend is progress (though yours is a beautiful analogy, and in repeating it in politcal connotation I would leave it in your pristine form).

    That segues into my real point. Even if the process is unmeaningful to the casual observer, or superficial to the circumstance, it is poinent to end. In my analogy, the end is eliminating cainine gas and returning sane behavior to the dog and the noses of the household. This applies to the Fitzgerald agenda for numerous reasons that spell victory.

    1- a return for public acknowledgement of accountability at the highest level (where it should be more stringent, not less)

    2- A no longer quiet discontent for corruption or corruptive practices in government. The noise makers now are of a whole new generation. To them (us) it is only an academic pursuit to throw around the fact that administrations have always been subversive. So what if this administration is only following in the footsteps of bad policy from 50, 100, 150 years of administrations. We founded this country on indignant discontent and "just because it has always been so" is no longer an acceptable option. To have Fitzgerald sweep through the trifecta of decision makers (toss in one very poor laundersman- Mr. Delay) and make a very public example of the reason we all should be held to the same standard of law, is exemplainary of this point. (I beleive Benito Juarez championed this cause for the Mexican legal system more than a century ago)

    3- Most importantly for the "progressive victory" is the fact that anyone remotly connected with this debacle who had previously blipped as contenders for 2008 have lost so much credibility by proxy, that we don't have to worry about the Bush brat pack infiltrating another election (no Frist, Condie, ect...). This tainting of political chasity has been laid out, regardless of whether they ever would have actually been candidates or not. The take home message here is the or not effect.

    Once again, Hunter, I respond with reverence, but repectfully point out that dialogue of malcontent is always proactive on some level, whether it be reactionary or in decompression to the issue at hand. The Fitzgerald indictments present a huge symbolic impact on the American perspective, and from a sociological stand point, that is more important than the net result of the prosecutions.

    "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." ~George Orwell

    by txdem21 on Sun Oct 30, 2005 at 11:27:37 PM PST

  •  Hunter (none)
    Are you a well known writer? When I read your diaries, I always have a vague feeling that I've read pieces or books by you away from this website, but at the moment (it's late and I'm tired), I can't put my finger on the author(s) I'm thinking of.

    This diary was excellent, and I also enjoyed all the comments.

  •  A-a-a-men (none)
    "everyone is trying to decide whether or not the Fitzgerald indictments are a "victory" for their side or the other side"

    Tell my daughter that it's a victory that snipers are on the White House roof (picture at the Sept 24th march on DC - I just told her who those black clad figures on the roof were)

  •  That was excellent Amando! (none)
    I think the media does it's best to confuse people on every issue and to keep us as evenly divided as possible, except for when it comes election time. I just wish that I understood the reason for some of the absurd things they say and do, because I don't think the simple explanations tell the whole story.

    It's interesting to watch Republican pundits defend Libby as a "nice", "funny", and "intelligent" guy, as if they're doing everything they can to protect his future in politics. Surprisingly, however, I don't believe that I've heard it mentioned that Libby will soon be back, as they normally do when one of their own is in trouble. I've never understood why Republicans continue supporting people who eventually drag them down and especially considering that I don't recall any of them ever coming back to the same job, although some have later been appointed elsewhere. It's as if they have a select number of people whom they can trust and they'll fight to the end to save the honor of any of them.

    Democrats -- Progress for the Working Class

    by rogun on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 01:38:44 AM PST

  •  Can <i>I</i> just say something? (none)
    I wish conservatives would learn to celebrate justice, too. How much better would the world be if they did? Aren't you glad someone does?
  •  One of the best segments (none)
    I have seen was on "60 Minutes" last night.
    I submit, every mother's child of us should write, e-mail or call our appreciation.
    Most of the Republicans, the zealous, no longer watch "60 Minutes" (or will not admit doing so).
    They are Faux watchers or claim to be.
    We need to not only excoriate the whores, but praise the honest journalists.
    •  there was an interesting sidenote in huffington (none)
      this morning about wallace and rather getting a yelling match about his not resigning. i have mixed views on that. i think rather should have said, yup we should never have allowed ourselves to be put in this position, but hell take a look at the record. this man is a yellow belly who ran from war and doesn't even have the cojones to even own up to that.
  •  Hunter (none)
    This is the best thing I've read here in a loooong time.  Well said.  And may I add I'm sick to death of people like William-flippin'-Saffire not even getting it.  For him going on Meet the Press and saying that Fitzgerald emphasized that he didn't find any conspiracy or leak whatsoever, or some-such.  (No, that's not what Fitzgerald was getting at or emphasizing, you old goat.)  We need all new pundits, fresh people who aren't going to jump to the same damn conclusions all the time but people who listen to what people are saying and get it.
  •  awesome rant! thanks nt (none)

    "Every act of becoming conscious is an unnatural act." - Adrienne Rich

    by marjo on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 02:02:03 AM PST

  •  Ann Coulter, Man, or Manimal? (none)
  •  amen (none)
    Well said, Hunter.  

    Same reaction here yesterday.  We turned on the Sunday am news shows for the latest, and first encountered "Washington Week" punditry from Friday.  Same old hacks -- the commentary being two days old made it seem even more irrelevant and out of touch with reality. A cruise around the other channels looked like it was "analysis day" -- framing the story through whatever talking points w/o trying to understand the story from the available facts. One "expert" said the Leak was about Joe Wilson's claims that Dick Cheney sent him to Africa. I yelled, "somebody better correct her!!" But the false statement stood as fact.  

    Unbelievable that Coulter was presented as a legitimate talking head.

    Thank god for the world wide web. And daily Kos, Which I first discovered through a link to your (and my favorite of all time) "TANG Typewriter" analysis.

  •  With you Hunter (none)
    I think the country needs the truth out. We need Libby and Rove to hang around until the complete story is told. Even before the Libby indictment overwhelming majority of the people indicated in recent polls that they see an illegal committed by this WH. It is obvious that Libby violated the text of 1982 law, the only reason Fidzgerald did not charge him for that crime was he felt the crime wasn't intentional although we Kenneth Starr in his place with Democrats on the ropes would have certainly charged them. Rove is still on the ropes, I believe for the same reasons. We all know he spoke with Novak as well as Matt Cooper. At the very least he should be charged with mishandling classified information. He seems to justify why/how he forgot about his conversation with Matt Cooper. That is besides the point. Karl Rove was the source of Robert Novak who originally outed Valerie Plame and that is a crime.

    Al Davis
    Failure -> I'm Feeling lucky: George W. Bush

    by chosamane on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 05:22:48 AM PST

    •  Disremembering? (none)
      Remember, "not being able to recall" is what H.R. Halderman went to prison for.

      I don't think Patrick Fitzgerald is going to buy that defense for a New York second!

      You go to war with the indictments you can prove, not the ones you'd like to prove. -Billmon

      by Joon on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 07:55:11 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hunter (none)
    If you're going to rant, use the word "fuck".  Don't censor yourself.

    I think I already lost the political battle here, but I always tell those bleeding-ears parents so offended by profanity that using the word <font size=24>fuck</font> doesn't traumatize kids half as much as lying to them does.

    There are four boxes to use in the defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, ammo. Use in that order.

    by Dragonchild on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 06:03:27 AM PST

  •  Go Hunter! (none)
    Thank you! The Coulter Verbal Vomit show this weekend had me really wondering what is going on at CSPAN.

    Impeach the administration, install Gore and Kerry.

    by vlogger on Mon Oct 31, 2005 at 06:51:41 AM PST

  •  I Disagree (none)
    "There is nothing good or victorious about this situation, for either side. Nothing. Nothing."

    While I underastand where you're coming from, I have to disagree.  Your statement is akin to the media's pox on both your houses moral equivalency of the parties.  While neither party is perfect, clearly the Republican party is far worse than the Democratic party when it comes to justice and democracy and the general welfare of America.  

    Am I partisan?  You bet.  But I don't say the Republican party is evil because I support the Democrats.  I support the Democrats because the Republican party is evil.  

    In fact, Plamegate IS a small victory for the Democratic party.  It is a small beginning toward holding the evil Republican party accountable for injustice and wrongdoing and therefore a small victory.

  •  i believe more and more americans are (none)
    joining in your views. i certainly do. in fact today i am cutting much of my cable as i don't watch it much anymore. i get basic cable as part of my package and i use roadrunner for business.
  •  Let's You and Him Fight (none)
    Using the equation: Republicans = Bad + Evil is not very smart.

    It's a blanket condemnation not dissimilar to prejudice. It's stereotyping and does not serve the goals which the vast majority of the people on this blog seem to hope to achieve.

    some very decent people are republicans. a lot of very decent people who aren't republicans voted for bush. we want them on our side. bush didn't deserve to win in 2000 or 2004. gore and then kerry simply ran very inept campaigns. we can argue about the skuldudgery aspect of what happened but the truth is: neither kerry or gore convinced enough voters of their cause to win.

    if you want to bring the the above mentioned groups over to our side don't sneer at their choices or philosophy. they're probably feeling more than a little regretful these days without any castigation by us.

    think like fitz. go with what you can prove, or at least what you can make a really good case for. stop generalizing like seventh graders.

    do you want people to think you're stupid? bush and his buddies want just that. it helps them and their cause. as long as the rank and file of both parties are squabbling, ranting, and pointing fingers at each other (let's you and him fight!) bush and cheney RULE.

    put to rest the question of stupidity on the part of bushco. they didn't get in power by being stupid. intelligent people make plenty of stupid mistakes. bush and company are not stupid. bush by himself may be. but bush by himself is not the way the whole thing is set up. bush and cheney are joined at the hip. libby was the glue. (some different glue may have been applied over the weekend. maybe some was even sniffed).

    however, arrogance and blind ambition trump intelligence. shakespeare is full of that and so is bushco. they have dug a huge hole in which they now find themselves. but they're still not stupid. and now they're wounded. a wounded beast can be very dangerous. they're also very cunning. there will be diversions, some of them elaborate and even ingenious. they will fight furiously with every available tool and weapon. we must stay on task and keep the pressure on them.

    do something really corny and write your congresswoman. write letters to the newspapers. don't rant. be polite but EXPRESS YOUR ANGER. and never relent.

  •  Libby's Proposed Defense (none)
    I have been reading about the possibility that Libby might defend himself against these charges by saying that he is an important government official who cannot be expected to "remember" every little detail from converstations that took place last year.

    I was just eating Chinese food for lunch as I was reading this thread.  My forture cookie said "If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything."  I wonder if Scooter Libby ever eats Chinese food...!

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