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June 28, 2006


Off Topic, but I thought you might be interested in this findlaw article on a Libby pardon.

Wow, polly, that's some real nonsense. Got to go out to a fundraiser right now. Will return to that nonsense when I get back.

The GOP can't make too much more of this without going into an actual legal battle with the NYT. They just want to squeeze as much juice as they can out of this story to excite some of their base. Overall, I think the fight does help the GOP. Nobody's up in arms over the supposedly secret program, unlike the wiretapping program. And the NYT does come off as being out to stir up trouble with the Bush administration. Maybe discussing the specifics of the program amounts to nothing, which I think will be the case, but as long as the administration can go out there and say that if printing the story means we catch one less terrorist, in the end that hurts the NYT image and rallies a few more Republican voters.

Considering how they've promised the juice to the Theocrats and have held them off for twenty plus years, I wonder if they think that they can play the Neocons the same way. Problem is, the Neocons are far more politically savvy than the [insert disparaging name from Abramoff emails here], and will turn on this administration with a ferocity I doubt they could imagine.

This whole uproar is about changing the bounds of legitimate political discussion, nothing more. This administration has no intentions of going after the NYT now, but they've successfully introduced the notion that it's ok to accuse the national press of treason. This is all about creating a political climate where they can maintain their grip on power in the face of all their disasters by manipulating the public discourse. It is clearly an act of desperation, but it just might work. The political elite in this country are so divorced from everyday reality that they may just allow this administration to channel people's fear and rage against our most basic institutions.

As I wrote this, the post from William Ockham paralleled
my thoughts. So.....whatever it's worth, here's my take, too.

The Republicans attacking the NYT is so ironic in view of how much the Times helped this Administration in its run-up to war and its denegration of the Democrats.

What this whole nonsense is more about attacking any journalism, to call it all into question, to raise the doubts of the American public, thus making them more maleable to whatever pronouncements come from the White House. They want to make the White House the only official purveyor of "reliable" and "patriotic" reporting.

Boy, the WH must really be up to no good if they are crowing this loudly about the NYT piece.

It's a diversion, guys! Look over here at the big, bad New York Times and don't look over there at: Iraq, New Orleans, Bush's lousy poll numbers that didn't get a decent bounce from whacking Zarqawi, Bush's failed immigration bill, Bush's failed social security bill, inflation, a tanking stock market and home-sale market. It's their tried and true MO -- inflate a non-issue so the press gets distracted by it and the Dems are busy playing defense and can't hit them on their corruption and incompetence. The sad part is, it works every time.

As far as I know, the Democrats haven't thrown their 2 cents into this mess, nor should they. The media gets distracted by this because they live in fifteen minute increments, and Iraq and NO were soooooo 15 minutes ago.

When Cheney and Libby leak the classified NIE to New York Times, that is a good leak. When Rove and Libby leak Plame's CIA affiliation that is another example of a good leak.

Infact by definition anything this administration leaks is good, and anything it does not is bad.

Similarly when Bush talks about the success in foiling the financial dealings of the terrorists, it makes us safer. Yet when the New York Times and a bunch if other newspapers mention that, it puts us in grave danger.

One correction, Pete. The leaking the NIE to the NYT? That's a lie, Scooter Libby's lie to protect Dick. Nope, he wasn't ordered to leak the NIE to Judy (the timing is off, for one thing, because he leaked the NIE to Woodward a week before he was ordered). He was ordered to leak Plame's identity.

But the hypocrisy surrounding leaking? There you're right on the money.

Holy crap! The Two Minutes Hate! There is not a better term for these little episodes Our Dear Leader has. I can't believe I didn't notice this before. Kudos if that's an original thought by you -- if it's not, kudos for letting me in on it.

Wow. Bushco gets creepier by the minute.

Well, the "One Minute Hate," is probably an original thought, the orphan stepchild of a wiser mind. The Two Minute Hate--how I wish I had gotten that right--I'm sure I picked up from someone who remembers their Orwell better.

I don't have time to look up the Fitzgerald filing, but Libby through a surogate DID leak the NIE to the WSJ. I'll find it later tonight

Yes, I agree, polly. But I'd bet a good deal of money that's not what he was ordered to leak just before he went off leaking to Judy.

Libby wouldn't have asked for the attribution "Former Hill staffer" for leaking something he had leaked to two other people. Nor would he have asked Addington, Cheney, and Bush for permission to leak something he had already leaked.

It is embarrassing that the media just rolls over for this. "Oh! Okay!" Froomkin's out there, of course, standing up for freedom of the press, and those blogofascists too -- I mean, they must be fascists, just like TNR said, because they're standing up to governmental authority.... oh. Wait. Well, TNR has decided that Kos is a lot more dangerous to America than the destruction of freedom of the press.

Can I just say, from a blog reader, thank goodness for all those bloggers out there, including here, who refuse to let the administration dictate the discourse. Keep it up.

Before we get to the New York Times, can we prosecute Bob Woodward and all the folks who leaked to him for "Plan of Attack"? Compare the stuff in that book (specific sources and methods) with the SWIFT stuff. In a rational world (I know, I know), we'd be talking about whether it's appropriate for an Administration to betray their allies for the sake of good publicity. When I say betray their allies, I mean that literally. Some of the stuff revealed in "Plan of Attack" about Iraqis (mostly Kurds) who helped the CIA was quite detailed. Given the subsequent events in Iraq, I'm sure those folks didn't appreciate the book.

I have only one question. Why weren't the repukes livid when their own leadership intentionally leaked the name of a covert CIA officer? We actually have a damage assessment to National Security. (not to mention an indictment) Sick of the hypocritical Greedy Old Parasites.

Why are they screaming so loud over this?

Here's a speculative thought: they are currently fighting NYT over the publication of *another*, more damaging story, about to come out. They need to establish the bad faith of the Times.

Interesting thought, kvenlander. It would certainly explain why they're going after NYT and not WaPo and WSJ.

Here is the text from the Fitzgerald filing about the leaking of the NIE to the WSJ. Fitzgerald refers to Libby's GJ transcript, so Libby must have testified on this matter.

In addition, the government’s evidence at trial (including the defendant’s grand jury transcript) will refer to a July 17, 2003, Wall Street Journal editorial entitled “Yellowcake Remix,” which contained quotations from the 2002 National Intelligence Estimate (“NIE”). This editorial resulted from the defendant’s transmittal, through another government official, of a copy of portions of the NIE to the Wall Street Journal shortly before the editorial was published.
Filing 5/12/06

and here is the WSJ trying very hard to imply they didn't get a leak, but never actually deny it...because they did

Mr. Libby wasn't a source for our editorial, which quoted from the October 2002 National Intelligence Estimate concerning the Africa-uranium issue. But Mr. Fitzgerald alleges in a court filing that Mr. Libby played a role in our getting the information, which in turn shows that "notwithstanding other pressing government business, [Libby] was heavily focused on shaping media coverage of the controversy concerning Iraqi efforts to obtain uranium from Niger."
WSJ 8/8/06


The WSJ states that Libby was not their source. Fitzgerald never made that claim.

The WSJ never denies the allegation they refer to about Libby playing a role.

They also don't deny that they received "a copy of portions of the NIE".

I defer to your detailed knowledge of all things Miller, on whether Libby leaked the NIE to Judy or something else.


I'm sure he DID leak to Judy, and he appears to have leaked to Bob Woodward and possibly someone else on July 2. That's not my point. My point is this. The NIE leak schedule Libby first testified to went something like:

July 2: Ask super secret permission to leak NIE
July 8: Leak NIE to Judy
July 17ish: Leak NIE through some lackey to WSJ

But then it was discovered that Woodward got a leak, so things looked like this:

July 25: Leak NIE to Woodward
July 2: Ask super secret permission to leak NIE
July 8: Leak NIE to Judy
July 17ish: Leak NIE through some lackey to WSJ

Well, that doesn't make sense! Why get Addington and Dick and Bush to give you special dispensation to leak something you've already leaked?!?!?

And in fact Fitzgerald has at least suggested the following is possible:

June 23: Receive permission to leak NIE (and possibly leak it to Judy?)
July 25: Leak NIE to Woodward
July 2: Ask super secret permission to leak NIE, leak NIE to some unnamed journalist (my guess is Novak)
July 8: Leak NIE to Judy
July 17ish: Leak NIE through some lackey to WSJ

This last scenario is where Libby's claim that he was ordered to leak the NIE to Judy before July 8. Obviously, if he leaked it to Judy on June 23, then he wouldn't have to leak the NIE to Judy on July 8. In which case, the next question is, "okay, so what were you ordered to leak to Judy on July 8?" Given the facts surrounding the case (face-to-face meeting, false attribution to former Hill staffer, Judy's history as an A1 cut-out), I'd suggest that it's quickly becoming completely implausible that Libby was ordered to leak the NIE on July 8 (which is not to say he wasn't ordered to leak it earlier, which seems to be the case).

You see, it appears Libby was ordered to leak the NIE to Judy in June. And, I'm fairly certain, he was ordered to leak Plame's identity to Judy in July. And Judy was supposed to publish it on A1, after which Karl could call anyone he wanted to say, "Plame is now fair game."


Yes, and it gets even better when you think about. Cheney covered for Libby when he talked to Fitzgerald. If Libby flips, Cheney is in big trouble. Come to think of it, if Rove has documentary evidence of that, Cheney may already be in trouble. Man, I would hate to be the guy who had to decide to choose between prosecuting Rove and Cheney.

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