A Small Irritation

Exactly why was my tax money spent funding a junket suggested by the spouse (a government employee)? Transparency and some objectivity might, indeed, see “Karl Rove, Whistleblower.” I suspect that many in Washington do not see it that way not just because of political leanings or blood-in-the-water triumphalism, but because such arrangements are so common (& interwoven) in the media, the bureaucracy, and politics.

13 thoughts on “A Small Irritation”

  1. Pingback: Kerfuffles
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  3. Its time for the politicians and MSM to move on to something else.

    As the Tomcat said when he kissed the skunk, “it’s been grand, but I’ve enjoyed all of this that I can stand.”

  4. I would guess — and let me repeat that this is just a guess — that a faction at the CIA opposed to administration policy decided to send Wilson because they expected him not to find anything.

    Some months ago David Brooks of the NYT suggested that rather old fashioned treatment be given to those in the CIA who were sabotaging our elected officials. (If I recall correctly, he wanted them slaughtered and the site raxed and plowed with salt.) There seems to be no doubt that a significant part of the CIA has gone far beyond acceptable bounds in opposing President Bush. Those of us who believe that elected officials should be in charge find this troubling.

    So, since the adminstration asked for more intelligence on Niger, this CIA faction sent someone they expected would fail to find anything. (Although Wilson did actually learn that Saddam had sent a trade mission to Niger, looking for
    uranium, nearly everyone believes — though that wasn’t what he said in his infamous NYT op-ed.) Wilson’s trip may have been a junket, but it was also intended to sabotage the Bush administration.

    That theory fits the known facts, and explains many other strange happenings at the CIA.

  5. One of Bush’s major failings, which he shares with his father, is excessive deference to other executive-branch officials, so long as they do not demonstrate disloyalty to the Administration. The Bushes also tend to prefer behind-the-scenes maneuvering to public arguments. Consequently, Bush failed to fire the top leadership of the CIA and FBI after Sept. 11, as I think he should have done to establish accountability and pour encourager les autres, and he has failed adequately to make a public case in support of the war and his domestic-security initiatives. It is no surprise that his political opponents in the bureaucracies and press, allied with the Democrats in Congress, are now exploiting the opportunities that his weaknesses helped to create.

  6. You worry about your tax bucks being misused? you are kidding! Look at the pork, the fat, the incredible monies being spent for those of us who still pay taxes and then perhaps you would not nit pick about one guy…that is, unless you have an agenda, as is clearly the case.

    As for Rove: I am of the old school. There is a special prosecutor. Let him do his work. And then let us see. This silly speculation and talk talk is fine for tea time in academia but our nationa is faltering, going down the tubes. Time to move on ? Right: let us not facea possibe breaking of the law and get to a more pleasant subject, such as whgy our environment sucks; why the weatlhy get such tax breaks; why illegals flood our country and the Bush administration does next to nothing about it (we even buy our border guartd uniforms from Mexico,rtather thanChina); why our citizens have lousy health coverage; and on and on …but No. Focus on those nasty guys who pick on Rove. Thank the good lord the GOP never did this with Kerry and his medals and ignored the lying swift boat fakers…

    March on, lads, forget Rove and forget all that you deem unworthy and unpleasnt…timefor high tea?

  7. I thought the old school knew how to spell, punctuate and formulate a rational argument consisting of more than mere assertions.

  8. Your love/hatred of Rove aside, when someone in his position intentionally identifies an operative to the press, it’s treason. Can’t we all agree on this? Even if there was a whistle to be blown, Rove doesn’t get to blow it without breaking the law. People who are privy to classified infomation aren’t allowed to just chat about it with the press even if that person believes they are doing the right thing or that the public needs that info.

  9. I don’t love Rove and indeed have been consistently critical of his cynical political stratagems (steel tariffs etc.). However, I don’t think it’s even close to being clear who exposed Plame as a CIA agent, whether Plame was a covert agent at the time of her outing or whether any harm, legal or otherwise, was done. For all I know it was the journalist Robert Novak, or Wilson himself, who exposed her. And it looks to me like Rove, far from being a leaker in this case, was doing nothing more than warning a journalist that Wilson was an unreliable source, which is obviously true since he’s been caught lying about his role in the famous mission to Niger. Aldrich Ames, a real traitor, outed several real covert agents who were subsequently killed. Contrast that grim episode with the Wilson and Plame show, in which the daring couple was written up in Vanity Fair with a big photo showing them dressed up like spies. They seem to doing rather well by these supposedly harmful revelations, as are other Democratic partisans. Cui bono.

  10. Jim Miller puts this in a stronger context and G ewirtz is as usual devastating. However, I want to add a note.

    Actually, it isn’t one guy anyway. It is a way of looking at taxpayer’s money as one’s (and one’s spouses) due. It is a feminism that argues that a wife should be seen as a separate independent person and at the same time that a wife not only doesn’t recuse herself but actually lobbies for her husband’s appointment. It is a belief that civil servants have the right to lie in various public venues to undermine policies of elected leaders. In short, it is a narcissism that can’t even comprehend integrity; “I’ve eaten the King’s bread and I’m loyal to the King” may be the unconscious Billy Budd’s simple retort, but it is one that Joe Wilson could not understand. (And no, for Mr. Rover if he is literal minded, I do not consider Bush King nor unwitting loyalty to him good; I do believe that the CIA serves the elected government and a man who feels he can not do so should not expect to be given both money & a platform.)

    By the way, the recent news about the deficit and the increasing level of home ownership among the middle class might lead Mr. Rover to modify his attitude toward tax cuts. And exactly why do people flood a country whose environment sucks & has lousy health care? And how do you define “sucks” and “lousy health care”?

  11. I agree with Jonathon that it’s not clear who outed Joe Wilson’s wife. (I think that Novak seems very dirty in all of this. But that’s my personal opinion, certainly not enough to convict anyone on.) I also agree whole heartedly with Jonathon’s statement that outing covert agents can have grisly consequences (he sites the incidents around Aldrich Ames.) And I also feel as Jonathon does, that we don’t yet know what happened.

    So do we then agree that outing covert agents is wrong? And do we also agree when something like this happens at the highest level of government that it needs to be carefully investigated?

  12. Chel,

    When you can prove that Valerie was still at the time a covert agent, then let the investigation go on. Until that is proved then there is no case against Rove at all. From all I have been able to find out Valerie was no longer to be considered a covert agent as she had not functioned secretly in an overseas mission for years. Therefore it is a moot point and I think we need to take a good long look at how Wilson got this task, from whom and what he actually reported. He has told so many stories about what he did that it is difficult to see what his latest gambit is other than the enrichment of Joseph Wilson and family. I do not think that I want my tax dollars to go into that pocket in any way, shape or form.

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