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June 05, 2004

The Death of the President

GW Bush is lawyering up for an investigation into L'Affaire Plame. If he is re-elected and winds up dirty, he'll be impeached. I'd vote for his impeachment if he proves dirty enough. I said it before, and I'll say it again, this was unforgiveable.

Let's get to the bottom of this rabbit hole, shall we?

Posted by mbowen at June 5, 2004 07:59 PM

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Off-topic, but..

I thought this might appeal to you: Be of Good Heart.

Posted by: Steve D at June 6, 2004 07:51 AM

Y'know, Cobb. There is at least one person that can positively identify the source of the leak: Robert Novak. While I can appreciate the confidentiality that reporters afford sources, I fail to see how the same practice designed to encourage whistle blowers to identify problems in public institutions can in good conscience be extended to protect someone whose action was not only illegal but demonstrably without noble intention at all.

Posted by: submandave at June 6, 2004 10:59 AM

If I was Novak, I would shut the hell up until somebody served me a subpoena. But unless and until it comes down to the Ashcroft or his deputies telling me to talk, I wouldn't talk. I'm not thinking about journalistic integrity, I would be thinking about saving my neck from reprisals. You simply don't mess with the president of the US.

But it shows how vulnerable we all are when the President is a cad (or a bounder). Novak is the patsy here. He was used intentionally to leak Plame's cover. The chain goes up from there. If it was a mistake, then the idiot party would have suffered already. It's intentional, and Novak shouldn't budge until he knows he has the leverage of somebody the President can't touch.

The problem is, that there doesn't seem to be anybody the President can't touch, and that's why this investigation is so important.

Posted by: Cobb at June 6, 2004 11:19 AM

Maybe I'm just playing naive here, but even if this was the result of a sinister plot, I just can't see the President himself playing as large a role as you seem to believe. I have always questioned Novak's motivation all along. Not from a "he was up to no good" perspective, but just from a "what the Hell was he thinking?" perspective. I mean, you're a reporter and a tipster calls you up and his big tip is "Valerie Plame is a CIA agent". So, where's the news there? The motivation on both sides has baffled me from the start. Oh, speaking of which, there are apparently two other people who know, since the same person reportedly contacted other journalists who just let it drop on the floor, like I probably would have. Maybe Novak was trying to get his contact in trouble by publishing, but who knows?

I'm with you, though. I say pull out the subpoenas and let's see who knows what.

Posted by: submandave at June 6, 2004 01:54 PM


You don't mess with the CIA either. I'd be much more afraid of that crew.

Novak (and his editors) are hardly patsies. They knew exactly what they were doing. A man who has been in journalism since before either of us were born knows when he is breaking the law and Novak, although a "paleo-conservative", is a friend of the White House. Additionally, I don't think he was the only one who was given this info, but he was the only one who was slimy enough to out it to use.

Posted by: walter at June 6, 2004 04:59 PM

Yes, don't mess with the CIA either. No matter what kind of operator Novak is, he cannot outmack the Mack Daddies in the CIA or the White House. So he's caught between two enemies, and it's not going to be easy to tell who is trying to do what to whom. The good thing he's got going for him is that he's a somebody who is more famous than Plame.

Now that Tenet is free to speak his mind, he's going to be something of a wildcard here. Having been the longest serving DCI since Dulles, he's got to have some serious clout remaining. So don't doubt that he's out of the picture. He can testify as a private citizen.

Still, Novak is collateral damage. I'm going to watch Josh Marshall - he generally can be relied on to get this level of intrigue right.

Posted by: Cobb at June 6, 2004 05:23 PM