Saturday, July 16, 2005

What has happened to America?

The RNC talking points are doing there job - muddying the waters, confusing the issues, spreading lies and innuendo, to the point where nobody seems care about the truth anymore - Out of one corner of their mouth, the Whitehouse refuses to comment on the Rove leak until after the investigation, yet out of the other, the RNC feels free to spread mounds of rubbish through the mouthpiece of the Republican Noise Machine.

Washington Times: most of her neighbors and friends knew that she was a CIA employee

New York Post: Republicans yesterday claimed President Bush's political guru Karl Rove has been exonerated by the news that reporters — and not top-secret government sources — tipped him off that a Bush critic's wife worked for the CIA... A bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee report found many of Wilson's claims about his mission were false.

Fox News: Republicans cheered the latest revelations Friday, saying they showed Rove wasn't trying to hurt Plame but instead was trying to informally warn reporters to be cautious about some of Wilson's claims.

RNC Talking Points:
  • Karl Rove discouraged a reporter from writing a false story based on a false premise (Notice how eerily this resembles the talking points concerning the Bush Administration's declaration of war in Iraq?)
  • Both the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the CIA found assessments Wilson made in his report were wrong (Notice that there is no word on why the assessments were wrong - facts aren't important here. The fact is that there was no uranium sale in Niger, the documents were forged, and the president lied about said facts in the State of the Union address to justify an illegal war based on false pretenses --but, I guess that doesn't matter)
  • Officials said Evidence Was "Thin"and his "Homework Was Shoddy" (What is this? An indictment of Amb. Wilson, or an Indictment of President Bush? The president was using shoddy and incomplete evidence in order to declare war on a soveirgn nation. I believe the onus was on the Bush Administration to provideconclusive evidence of their assertions, and not the other way around)
  • Sens. Pat Roberts (R-KS), Kit Bond (R-MO), and Orrin Hatch (R-UT) All Stated, "On at least Two Occasions [Wilson] Admitted That he had no direct knowledge to support some of his claims and that he was drawing on either unrelated past experiences or no information at all" (The first thing I notice is that they are using three repulican senators as their source, and, yet, they want to accuse the democrats of initiating partisan attacks. Again, I'd like to highlight the irony of the neocons accusing Wilson of making claims based on questionable intelligence)
  • Once again, Democrats are engaging in blatant political attacks (Excuse me, but this all started because of blatant political attacks on the part of Rove, Novak, et al. The RNC talking points are nothing but blatant political attacks. This is no longer a partisan issue -- The president's senior political analyst engaged in a treasonous act, and damaged our national security -- and yet, the talking heads continue to defend this man -- you tell me who's really engaging in partisan politics? These excerpts from Paul Krugman's most recent editorial, Karl Rove's America, say it all:

I first realized that we were living in Karl Rove's America during the 2000 presidential campaign, when George W. Bush began saying things about Social Security privatization and tax cuts that were simply false. At first, I thought the Bush campaign was making a big mistake - that these blatant falsehoods would be condemned by prominent Republican politicians and Republican economists, especially those who had spent years building reputations as advocates of fiscal responsibility. In fact, with hardly any exceptions they lined up to praise Mr. Bush's proposals....

One after another, prominent Republicans and conservative pundits have declared their allegiance to the party line...They're now a chorus, praising Mr. Rove as a patriotic whistle-blower.

..Ultimately, this isn't just about Mr. Rove. It's also about Mr. Bush, who has always known that his trusted political adviser - a disciple of the late Lee Atwater, whose smear tactics helped President Bush's father win the 1988 election - is a thug, and obviously made no attempt to find out if he was the leaker.

Most of all, it's about what has happened to America. How did our political system get to this point?

(Sorry for the long excerpts - I recommend actually checking out the full editorial at either the New York Times, or the Unofficial Paul Krugman Archive. After reading The Great Unraveling, I have become a huge fan of Paul Krugman -- He hits the nail on the head time after time, and saw through the Bush Administration's lies and manipulation long ago.)

For a look at the general consensus on the Karl Rove leak scandal, take a look at the discussion on this Slashdot article from Friday afternoon. The entire thread is a terrible indictment on the political climate of the United States - Instead of discussing facts, the entire thread is spent bickering over one RNC point or another.

I will echo Krugman's lamentation: "What has happened to America? How did our political system get to this point?"