Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Get Along Little Rover

In this media environment of sound bites and half-assed reporting, it is going to be up to independent media outlets, bloggers and those of us that read them, to counter the traditional media drum beat of “Karl Rove has been vindicated” by Patrick Fitzgerald’s announcement that the won’t be seeking indictments of Bush’s Brain. Rove is one slimy, slippery eel and although at first I was surprised by this development, I think ultimately, most of us were prepared for this possibility and it certainly doesn’t change the facts as we know them, that Rove, Libby, Cheney and Bush all lied to the American people, on their own and through Scott McClellan, when they said they had nothing to do with the leaking of Valerie Plame’s name to the press. The news today doesn’t change that fact.

This is certainly good news for the Bush administration and the GOP, as it frees up Rove to put all of his energy into maintaining a Republican majority in Congress this November. The Congressional races will likely be more ugly than even the 2004 Presidential election. The GOP has even more to lose now than they did back then and I expect to see outrageous mud-slinging prior to November and “unbelievable” vote tallies on election day because where there’s Rove, there’s fire, and whether or not he’s ever charged with arson, you can bet he’s holding the match.

I’m not as disappointed as I thought I would be by this news. I guess that’s because imagining Rove in an orange jumpsuit was nothing more than a happy fantasy picture in my mind that on some level I knew was just a visceral pleasure that had nothing to do with the real situation we are fighting. It would have been fun, but it wouldn’t have meant the end of the fight, not by a long shot. I still hold out hope that Fitzgerald’s investigation will continue to shed light on what happened in this White House during the lead up to the war and further expose the tactics this administration uses to silence its critics. As the case against Scooter Libby goes forward, Cheney isn’t out of the woods just yet and we can speculate that Rove, in an effort to get himself off the hook, may have provided Fitzgerald with information that will help that case move forward. Too bad the “Scooter and Shooter Show” won’t be opening (in a DC courthouse near you) until after the mid-term elections.

It is looking more and more likely that we won’t find out the whole truth of what really happened in the CIA leak case until after Bush and Cheney have left office, but that shouldn’t be a surprise either. This administration has locked down information better than any administration before and they seemed to have learned the lessons of Nixon, don’t just hide the most incriminating evidence, keep it all under lock and key so that the picture never becomes clear enough to find even a starting point. Allowing an outsider like Fitzgerald to conduct an investigation into Bush administration wrongdoing is a mistake they won’t likely make again. This desire for secrecy is why I have no doubt that Rove and the GOP will do anything and everything to keep control of Congress this November. It may take more “glitches” in voting software and purging of Democrats from voter rolls to do it, but thwarting democracy is a small price to pay for the riches to be gained and the crimes must remain hidden in order to continue the looting.

We have corruption at the highest levels of our government and it will take more than one lone prosecutor to remedy that. It will take each and every one of us, the citizens of this country, doing everything we can to make sure our voting systems are accurate and secure, to hold our elected officials’ feet to the fire, to organize behind new candidates that will go to DC and actually work for us, to re-build a Democratic Party infrastructure that supports candidates that have loyalty only to the people they represent, to put pressure on traditional media outlets to cover the stories we care about, to speak out when we see wrongs being committed and join together with others in our community to find common cause and strength in numbers. In theory, this is still a democracy, so let’s exercise our rights and participate in the process before the process rolls over us and we lose those rights altogether.

Rove being indicted would have been a very high profile blow to this administration, but it is certainly not their only weakness. The real nuggets of truth buried in the CIA leak case are the lies that led us to war. Getting Rove off the hook for outing Valerie Plame doesn’t absolve the Bush administration of that, and with a public that is disenchanted with this President and skeptical about his war of choice, there are plenty of vulnerabilities to hammer away at. We may only be flies buzzing around the head of this administration, but a swarm of flies can be awful irritating. They may not kill you, but they will draw attention, drive you crazy and maybe even force you to run screaming in the other direction. The stink is spreading making our job easier. All we have to do is point the flies in the right direction and let the swarming begin.


Anonymous geocrackr said...

From what I've heard I doubt that Rove is completely off the hook, or that he will be totally free to focus on jiggering the upcoming election (though probably free enough I warrant). All indications are that he only escaped indictment by ratting-out his accomplices; the fallout from that will be keeping them busy, and since one thing the Rethugs are actually not incompetent at is ratfucking, we can hope that Rove will be distracted fending off and punishing their retributive strikes.

I don't doubt that Fitzgerald knows what he's doing. Still, all-in-all, a sad day for justice.

10:58 AM  
Anonymous lester said...

I honestly am not sure Rove knew that Valerie Plame was the type of operative that she was. I think libby and cheney would have to have known. I think Rove probably knew her cover, that she was wilsons wife and worked a desk job at some agency.

i think cheney and co also had zero respect for the CIA. the neo cons always had crazy crazy theories about the middle east that the CIA knew were just silly. So cheney , rumsfeld and Bush kind of sided with them, maybe because they are all a bunch of crooks and can relae to each other very well on that level.

12:27 PM  
Blogger The (liberal)Girl Next Door said...

GeoCrackr--I'm still intrigued by the idea that there was in fact an indictment and that it is still sealed and there is more backroom maneuvering (and public spin) going on to fend it off. But, I'm starting to think that is nothing more than wishful thinking and it's more a case of Rove cooperating with the investigation, to the detriment of whom exactly, remains to be seen.

Lester--I, of course, don't know that either, but I would be surprised if he didn't. I think you're right (and the evidence suggests so far) that this was an operation run out of the VP's office, but I doubt that once Rove was brought in, he was kept in the dark about the facts of Plame's employment at the agency. But I could be wrong, especially given the reported animosity between Rove and the VP's office. Politics is ugly on that level, I don't doubt that they'd screw each other if it served their purposes.

1:32 PM  
Anonymous lester said...

cheney and libby carpooled, or rather limo-pooled, together every day. My guess is Wilsons name came up frequently.

I only defend Rove because he is a campaign guy, not a foreign policy guy. I don't think he knows niger from nigeria from yellowcake land.

2:14 PM  
Blogger Howard Martin said...

everybody in dc knows what went down. fitzgerald is a partisan hack, not an independent free spirit following the truth wherever it leads him. anybody from chicago who knows him can tell you that.

11:05 PM  
Anonymous Betty Cracker said...

I'm disappointed, but like you, not all that surprised. (sigh)

3:05 AM  
Anonymous geocrackr said...

Howard M.:

Funny, I haven't heard that from anyone with any credibility -- what are your sources, please?

12:52 PM  
Anonymous Dale Hippert said...

The Prosecutor Never Rests

Whether Probing a Leak or Trying Terrorists, Patrick Fitzgerald Is Relentless


Asked about criticism that he was a partisan on a witch hunt, the man who indicted a sitting White House official for the first time since the 19th century shot back: "One day I read that I was a Republican hack, another day I read that I was a Democratic hack -- and the only thing I did between those two nights was sleep."

In his day job as U.S. Attorney for Chicago, Leakgate Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald has prosecuted even more people associated with former Republican Gov. George Ryan than the 60 we noted yesterday.

The latest tally on Fitzgerald's GOP prosecutions comes from London's Financial Times, which noted on Saturday that his investigation into the Illinois GOP'er "has led to 79 arrests and 73 convictions."

But it's also true that Fitzgerald has done a better job going after Democrats than media reports we cited yesterday would indicate.

Fitzgerald's corruption probe into the contract award practices of the Chicago Mayor Richard Daley's Democratic administration, known as the "Hired Truck" scandal, have so far yielded 30 indictments and 23 convictions.

3:18 PM  
Anonymous Dale Hippert said...

Howard M.

The reason Gcrakr hasn't heard Fitzgerald referred to as a hack is because he hasn't been called that by anyone with any credibility.
That record remains intact as of your comment.

I live in Chicago. Haven't had the opportunity to share a bottle of Irish whisky with Pat yet. But he certainly appears to be a bipartisan prosecutor from where I sit!

3:32 PM  
Blogger Lefty Metalhead said...

I've added you as one of my allies on my blog mainly because I enjoy reading yours. Let me know if this is okay with you.

The Metal Pundit

6:19 PM  

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