BRANDOLAND: Talking to God...For You!

Friday, July 15, 2005

TGIF

Yesterday, I mentioned that the REAL threat to Bush with the whole Rove-Plame-Cooper-Miller thing would be a possible re-examination of his push for war in Iraq and his penchant for building the case around shoddy evidence.

The longer this thing drags on - the more likely "it" is that "someone" will start asking "other" questions.

Papers from around the country are a weighin' in on the same thing.

From the MPLS Star Tribune:

Karl Rove/Real issue is the case for war

MPLS, that's the town I love the best.
The real issue, more serious and less glitzy than whether Bush will stand by his political adviser, is the extraordinary efforts the Bush administration made to protect a case for war in Iraq from all contradictory evidence -- in effect, as the British spymaster Sir Richard Dearlove put it, to "fix" the facts and intelligence so they would support a decision already made.

*

It is instructive to remember that the investigation into who revealed Plame's identity was initiated by Tenet, not by administration critics. Remember also that Wilson was correct; ultimately the White House had to retract Bush's State of the Union statement on the Niger connection.

In addition to discrediting critics of the Niger connection, the Bush administration, through the actions of JOHN BOLTON -- now nominee to be U.N. ambassador -- sought to intimidate intelligence analysts who objected to conclusions about Iraq's WMD, and to get a U.N. chemical weapons official fired so he wouldn't be able to send inspectors back to Iraq, where they might disprove more of the case for war.

In the scheme of things, whether Rove revealed Plame's identity, deliberately or not, matters less than actions by Rove, Bolton, Cheney and others to PHONY UP a case for war that has gone badly, has cost thousands of lives plus hundreds of billions of dollars, and has, a majority of Americans now believe, left the United States less safe from terrorism rather than more.
The Pittsburgh Post Gazette sees the threat:

"Dump Rove / The investigation moves closer to the president"

Where yins goan'? Yins goan' dahntahn?
This isn't Watergate, however much Democrats may be licking their chops at the thought of Bush having to choose between loyalty to his friend and a long drubbing on the subject.

In any case, Watergate should serve as an educative experience for any president.

Given that Mr. Bush definitely has other things to do with his time -- starting with the Iraq war -- this is probably the time to just take a deep breath and fire Karl Rove now, before this goes any further.
'Mericans weren't supposed to be talking 'bout this stuff in the summer of '05 - 'bout the Bushies cooking the books to go to War in Iraq - BUT THEY ARE NOW.

Because - to REGULAR folks - and not just us commiepinkofaggotlefties - it's looking more and more like the Bushies took advantage of 9/11 to invade Iraq for their own personal gain. And lied about Hussein and his "WMD's" to do so.

That ain't good for the Bushies.

On that note..

Superior piece from Krugman today:
What Mr. Rove understood, long before the rest of us, is that we're not living in the America of the past, where even partisans sometimes changed their views when faced with the facts. Instead, we're living in a country in which there is no longer such a thing as nonpolitical truth. In particular, there are now few, if any, limits to what conservative politicians can get away with: the faithful will follow the twists and turns of the party line with a loyalty that would have pleased the Comintern.

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Every time I read a lament for the post-9/11 era of national unity, I wonder what people are talking about. On the issues I was watching, the Republicans' exploitation of the atrocity began while ground zero was still smoldering.

Mr. Rove has been much criticized for saying that liberals responded to the attack by wanting to offer the terrorists therapy - but what he said about conservatives, that they "saw the savagery of 9/11 and the attacks and prepared for war," is equally false. What many of them actually saw was a domestic political opportunity - and none more so than Mr. Rove.

A less insightful political strategist might have hesitated right after 9/11 before using it to cast the Democrats as weak on national security. After all, there were no facts to support that accusation.

But Mr. Rove understood that the facts were irrelevant. For one thing, he knew he could count on the administration's supporters to obediently accept a changing story line. Read the before-and-after columns by pro-administration pundits about Iraq: before the war they castigated the C.I.A. for understating the threat posed by Saddam's W.M.D.; after the war they castigated the C.I.A. for exaggerating the very same threat.

Mr. Rove also understands, better than anyone else in American politics, the power of smear tactics. Attacks on someone who contradicts the official line don't have to be true, or even plausible, to undermine that person's effectiveness. All they have to do is get a lot of media play, and they'll create the sense that there must be something wrong with the guy.

And now we know just how far he was willing to go with these smear tactics: as part of the effort to discredit Joseph Wilson IV, Mr. Rove leaked the fact that Mr. Wilson's wife worked for the C.I.A. I don't know whether Mr. Rove can be convicted of a crime, but there's no question that he damaged national security for partisan advantage. If a Democrat had done that, Republicans would call it treason.

But what we're getting, instead, is yet another impressive demonstration that these days, TRUTH IS POLITICAL. One after another, prominent Republicans and conservative pundits have declared their allegiance to the party line.
Good stuff.

Can't wait for McClellan's next press conference...

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