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"Hardball"

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Disagreeable

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Full article, but the link is below:

"It's serious business.

It all begins with a big fight between the CIA and the White House, especially the vice president's office. Scooter Libby, his chief of staff, is also his WMD expert.

The vice president has made the case for war very effectively on programs like 'Meet the Press,' that we had to go to war with Saddam Hussein because he possessed the potential to make nuclear war against the United States - to somehow deliver a nuclear weapon to this country.

For a lot of people, that was the deal maker for the war. They had a lot of problems invading a third-world country, but they said 'Well, if he has a nuclear program over there that is threatening us, we have to act.'

Well, we got over there, and our troops took that country, and there was no WMD, no nuclear, no nothing, so there is a lot of concern about how we could have gotten into a war based on false pretenses.

All of the sudden, Joe Wilson comes up and starts leaking to the New York Times' Nick Kristoff, 'Wait a minute, they not only don't have any WMD to justify the war, they knew there wasn't going to be any WMD because they knew, based upon my trip over there, that there was no deal to buy uranium by Saddam Hussein in Africa.' That's the big picture here.

What happens (then) is that the president of the United States gets upset, apparently, and wants to know what happened with the WMD, why there isn't any -- the vice president's office had said there are going to be WMD, the CIA was going along with it, even.

So there's a huge problem for the vice president to justify his behavior. Why didn't he pay attention to this trip that had been made to Africa? Why didn't he see that there was no WMD before we went to war, no uranium deal?

That's the heat about this. What did the vice president and his people do, faced with the hot seat that they were sitting on, that they had somehow gotten accused of taking us into war under false pretenses.

That's the environment in which this whole thing may have been hatched. If there was law-breaking, it came out of the vice president and his people's determination to protect themselves against the charge that they led us into a corrupt war, a war based on false pretenses.

That's how hot this thing is.

If there are indictments, they're going to be probably in the vice president's office, they're probably going to come next week and they are going to blow this White House apart.

It's going to be unbelievable.

I think the people watching right now who are voters better start paying attention to this issue. It's not just about whether somebody's name was leaked, it's about whether we went to war under false pretenses or not, whether people knew about that or not, and what they did when they were charged against that kind of offense against the United States.

It's serious business.

What questions still remain?
... (When) Joe Wilson came back, did he or did he not issue a clear cut denial that there was any issue with uranium and Saddam? Was his report clear as a bell that there was nothing there, or was it murky, open to different interpretations? That's the question.

Did the vice president ever know about his trip to Niger? We apparently now are realizing that he never knew about that trip. For some reason, the FBI never told the vice president's office that they were responding to his inquiry about a possible uranium deal in Africa by sending this one-man mission by Joe Wilson.

They never told him they were sending him. We have no real evidence that they ever told him that Joe Wilson reported back to the agency and then to the vice president's office, so bad communication could be part of this.

But it could also be that even though they were wrongly accused by Joe Wilson of knowing about his trip over there, they may have reacted to the heat that that put them under and then there may have been illiegalities in terms of outing Joe Wilson's wife, an undercover agent, and thereby breaking the law.

It's all questions of law here right now, and the possibility that this procecutor, who is a hard-nosed guy, bay be indicting on a grand charge of conspiracy to somehow deny Joe Wilson and his wife their rights as citizens - the use of federal power to basically trash someone.

Is that legitimate? I think a straight-arrow attorney or prosecutor like Patrick Fitzgerald may be saying 'I don't care if this is politics or this is hardball, no government official has the right to try and go out and squash somebody else, using the power they have with the media and other resources.

Impact on the president?
I think at the heart of this is the relationship between the president and the vice president and the vice president's fear that somehow his relationship was impeached by Joe Wilson's charges. Because if Joe Wilson was right and the vice president knew about his trip over there and knew that the WMD argument for war wasn't sound - and in fact there was no evidence to justify it, and the president suspected that the vice president knew that there wasn't really a good, sound case for war, that would jettison their whole relationship.

We have to look at all of that to try and find out what would have been a motive for why the vice president's people were so fervent in their desire to destroy the case made by Joe Wilson by destroying his credibility.

I think it does get to the relationship between the president and vice president. I noticed that when the president announced the nomination of Harriet Miers, for the first time, he had his press guy, Scott McClellan go out there - I assume he gave him the orders - and say 'When I picked Harriet Miers, I told Andy Card, and had him tell the vice president.'

It was the first real statement by this president that the vice president's not really involved in the big decisions.

How could the president so purposely, make it clear that not only was the vice president not part of the decision-making, but he had a staff guy go and tell him what the decision was.

There are some interesting things developing here, and maybe trying to follow up the points, connecting the dots gets a little bit dicey, but there is something big coming in this city, and people watching right now ought to realize that it's not just about a leak case - there are lots of leaks in this town - it's not even about a set of felonies. It's about the relationship between the president of the Untied States and the vice president of the United States, which has probably been the strongest political relationship we've ever seen in this town. They are so connected at the hip, that this dislodges that connection.

That's going to be big news, because now George W. Bush will be running this country completely on his own the next couple of months. It's going to be very interesting."


http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5445086/
 

Liberty Belle

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dis - in the interest of "fair and balanced" I've got a url for you. Check this out and then we'll talk: http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/home/daily/site_101905/content/rush_is_right.guest.html

Oh, by the way, have you had time to think of an answer to this:
http://ranchers.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5124
 

Cal

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I have not felt like this since Egypt where I lived where the press was a propaganda arm of the government. Now we have the Internet which is new enough that people don't understand that a "foundation" on the Internet is the same as a journal in the old days -- there is no guarantee that it is scientific, credible, unbiased, etc.
I'll take our alternative news sources today over the "good old days" when the evening news on TV and the usual slant basically went unchallenged.
 

mp.freelance

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Cal said:
I have not felt like this since Egypt where I lived where the press was a propaganda arm of the government. Now we have the Internet which is new enough that people don't understand that a "foundation" on the Internet is the same as a journal in the old days -- there is no guarantee that it is scientific, credible, unbiased, etc.
I'll take our alternative news sources today over the "good old days" when the evening news on TV and the usual slant basically went unchallenged.

I agree - it may take longer to sort out facts, but it's definitely more democratic.
 

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