Plame: the Messenger

I was at a party a few weeks ago. And at that party, I had a conversation like this:

Person: “The thing with Clinton is, I don’t care what you do, but don’t lie to me about it.”

Me: “But Bush has been lying pretty much non-stop since day one. His group even made up non-existent Texas rain to explain him falling off a bicycle. There’s nothing too big or too small for him to lie about!”

Person: “Yes, but not under oath.”

I had certainly seen this position, that somehow Clinton’s lies were more offensive than Bush’s because they were under oath, presented satirically, but not as reality, spoken to my own face. I was dumbfounded. How do you reply to that? How do you respond to the notion that sending American soldiers to die in a world-destabilizing war over a lie isn’t as bad as committing perjury over a blowjob?

The mettle of conservatives of this stripe is about to be tested once again. For some reason, almost two years after the fact, the liberal mainstream media is finally paying attention to the fact that a Bush staffer leaked the name of a covert CIA operative to the press as revenge. This is a felony. For all of you screaming about movie actors and pop stars giving “aid and comfort” to the enemy, how do you feel about exposing the identity of someone who was actually trying to stop the spread of WMDs, making her work useless, and endangering her life and the lives of her co-workers? And doing so just because you’re peeved with her husband?

Before, when it was just some unknown presumed nobody committing felonies, the story had no legs. But now there’s a name: Karl Rove, the disgusting parasite that is attached to the back of Bush’s neck.

Of course, it’s not the first time Rove’s name has been connected to this. It came up when Rove gave testimony a year ago to the grand jury investigating the matter. Presumably he denied his involvement to the grand jury, under oath.

The White House is now locked down in the matter. Poor Scottie McClellan is keeping his lip zipped as opposed to trying to spin this as a liberal hatchet job.

The conservative bloggers and pundits are more than happy to do it for him. Karl Rove didn’t out Plame as a CIA agent. What’s the big deal about outing a CIA agent anyway? And it turns out Valerie Plame wasn’t an agent. And the fact that she was an agent was already common knowledge. As usual, the cognitive dissonance factory is working overtime.

The fact that Newsweek published the story is also a talking point the conservatives have latched onto. After all, isn’t this the same magazine that irresponsibly published the “Koran flushing” story that turned out to be false? Yes and no. It published the story, and the story was actually true.

Oddly quiet throughout all this is Robert Novak, the asshole who published the leak to begin with. Why he still has a job is beyond me. He continues to sit smug in his web, presumably giggling at all the trouble he’s caused.

Or has he? I mean, let’s face it. Does anyone really think any heads are going to roll? I’ll be surprised if anyone even gets a rap on the knuckles. We all know that BushCo is completely teflon. They have trained the media and the public to let them get away with whatever they want. Minor brouhahas come up, such as the previously mentioned Koran flushing incident, but while we all scream at each other about the abusive treatment of holy texts at Guantanamo, we ignore the abusive treatment of human beings at Guantanamo. While we squawk about a memo that demonstrates that Bush lied about the Iraq threat, soldiers and civilians die in the wake of that lie. Bush doesn’t need to stifle dissent; it doesn’t actually change anything.

So if you want to get furious at Rove and Novak and Bush, by all means, be their guest. Get mad, write blog entries, sing protest songs, whatever you want. Doesn’t bother them, because it’s not like anything’s going to happen as a result. I mean, come on, do you really think Rove’s gonna go down? Bush would sooner give up Jesus than Rove.

This entry was posted in Politics. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Plame: the Messenger

  1. But…but…Clinton lied under oath!

  2. Anarkey says:

    Good entry, Dave. I have but one small comment to add, which is where you have intimated that no heads have rolled or will roll, I would remind you that Miller and Cooper are both going to jail. Miller is going to jail, apparently, for simply having knowledge about a source on the Valerie Plame deal. She didn’t actually ever write an article. Odd that, since Novak, the man who DID write an article is – as you point out – snug as a bug in a rug. One might even suspect that she’s going to jail because she didn’t leak what was needed when the leakers wanted it leaked…..but that would be conspiracy theorist, wouldn’t it? As tnh says,”I deeply resent the way this administration makes me feel like a nutbar conspiracy theorist.”

  3. Dave says:

    Yes indeed, Anarkey, thanks!

    And you know, I’m not even upset that Rove’s gonna walk away from this. I never expected anything but. What gives me joy beyond joy is the fact that, to defend Rove, Republicans are going to have to seriously use the phrase “double super secret background,” as here. That’s just fantastic.

  4. Mrs. Mancer says:

    Call me an optimist, but I *do* think there will be some fallout. I doubt it will be Rove, of course, but a girl can dream. John Stewart joked that the press corp had suddenly been replaced by people doing journalism, and I think that the press corp *may* be more tenacious on the story now–for no other reason than it fits in with the scripted journalism master narrative of “2nd-term scandal.” Bush is a lame-duck pres, his party is in-fighting, and neither party has a clear front-runner for 08. We’ve got to talk about something until Bush makes his judicial nominee, and goodness knows that won’t be Iraq. What I’m saying is that, from a “marketing” point of view, journalists may think that Americans want to hear about this story finally–even if that’s all that’s motivating them to report it, it may still get the story out there.