Friday, October 28, 2005


Fitz Probe

See here for our most recent discussion of this topic.

From WSJ (NYT reports similar info):
A special prosecutor is poised to bring charges against at least one Bush administration figure in the CIA-leak investigation, and the probe may continue. Rove was informed that he likely won't be charged. Fitzgerald has zeroed in on Cheney aide Libby.

Why is it that all the leaks have to do with White House indictments and never indictments of the Wilsons or CIA or other reporters? Hmmm...can it be that the press is pushing an agenda and wants to manufacture as much bad press for the WH as possible under the journalistic psuedo-legitimacy of "sources familiar with the investigation"?

Throwing out all idealism and appealing to raw political expediency I've re-thought the likely outcome. Tossing out my earlier wager that that virtually everybody associated with the White House will walk, free and clear. I can see how a Scooter indictment is baked in.

I was letting my own naive perceptions of justice and logic cloud my thinking. The most politcally palatable solutions, for both sides is this:

- Indict Scooter. someone's gotta be indicted after this 2-yr boondoggle. But rest easy, ye friends of justice, Scooter will plea bargain for a rap on the wrist, having already served as the sacrifical lamb. He will, of course, resign, but will enjoy life as a highly paid consultant and speaker.

- Fitzy may get an extension. This will allow the investigation to fade...gracefully...into...oblivion. Nothing new will come of any extension.

- Rove will remain "under investigation" which is a wink-wink, nod-nod for "we all know that you're innocent but play along to keep the raging dems at bay."

- One or both of the Wilsons will be indicted, eventually, not today b/c the atmosphere is too politcally charged and a high profile indictment may be exactly what little Joey is hoping for; it will give him another 15minutes. Perhaps my idealism is creeping in again, but in following the timelines and available (corroborated) reporting, the only people most likely to have leaked Vals identity are the Wilsons themselves. Why would NYT publish his Yellowcake editorial without some second source legitimacy such as "Valerie's in the CIA she can back my story."

Plus, let us not forget, that 'leaking' of Vals identity probably was NOT a crime in the first place. A non-crime has gotten Washington in an hysterical tizzy.

Enjoy Fitzmas. The gift I hope for is the termination of the independent counsel statute.

AJ Strata is on the case. A former prosecuter weighs in. And you gotta read Firedoglake today.

John O adds: For all those on the Left celebrating Fitzmas, I'd like to draw you attention to this from Captain Ed:
That (indictment) only puts the Bush administration 59 behind the Clinton administration, by the way. And that was while he was still in office -- that apparently does not count Sandy Berger's stealing of code-word classified documents from the National Archive and destroying them during the 9/11 investigation.
John O adds more: Newsbusters notes the difference in media coverage of this indictment vs those in the Clinton administration:
As ABC, CBS, and NBC all dived into live coverage today to report the indictment of Vice President Cheney's top aide Scooter Libby, this is not at all the way the networks covered indictments of cabinet officers in the Clinton years.

In September 1997, we reported in Media Watch that when former Agriculture Secretary Mike Espy was indicted on 39 counts, the networks aired a single evening news story. Three of the four networks -- ABC, CNN, and NBC -- underlined that the Smaltz inquiry had so far cost $9 million. None of them noted civil penalties originating from targets of Smaltz's inquiry amounted to more than $3.5 million. The next morning, CBS's morning show, called CBS This Morning, didn't even mention Espy's indictment. Months later, I noted in a Media Reality Check that on December 11, former HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros was indicted on 18 counts for misleading the FBI about payoffs to a mistress, Linda Medlar. NBC Nightly News filed one story; ABC's World News Tonight gave it 18 seconds. CBS Evening News didn't arrive on the story until the next night, and gave it nine seconds, a fraction of the two minutes Dan Rather gave the nightly El Nino update, about the weather "giving a gentle lift to the monarch butterfly." The morning shows were worse: NBC's Today passed on two anchor briefs, and ABC's Good Morning America and CBS This Morning ignored it.
Yet another example of blatent meda bias. Also, it demonstrates the effectivess of Clinton's basic governing philosophy of overwhelming America and its institutions with scandal and sleaze.


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