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June 23, 2007


Addington isn't much of a chess player, I'd say.

The WaPo has the first part of a 4 parter on Dickwahd online. It's scary.

as I understand it, there's a clause in the Constitution that says "all powers not delegated herein" are reserved to the States and the people respectivly

so if dead eye dick ain't covered under clause II, and he is entitled to be preznit of the Senate under clause I, then dead eye dick ain't got much to go on here

everything not mentioned in the Constitution belongs to US

and the powers that ARE delegated in the Constitution are delegated to Congress, the President, and the Supreme Court

so what powers exactly DOES dead eye have ???

he can vote when there is a tie in the Senate

can ANYBODY think of any other powers he might have ???

NASA director maybe (there's a power base for ya)

me thinks this is an argument that deadeye doesn't want to have with an opponent that can read and reason

the Constitution doesn't say anything about the power to pull shit out of your asshole ...

It does say that all the powers that deadeye CAN pull out of his asshole already BELONG TO US

it's like arguing with a fucking 4 year old ...

I like Dick!

Nail on the head. The "Office" of the Vice President has no constitutional authority other than to break tie votes in the Senate; it can acquire more if and only if the president is unable to serve, in which case the VP becomes acting or permanent president. Until then, he's a hat stand.

Mr. Cheney built a powerful "office" and accumulated enormous power only by taking it from a willing George Bush, who is as clueless about how to wield power as he is about environmental policy, running an oil drilling company or baseball team, or telling the truth.

Mr. Cheney's authority is derivative; he gets only a percentage of it, which is why he needs to demand that the president be deemed to have more and why he needs to keep all he does shrouded in secrecy. That derivative power is also his get out of jail card, because he's not the one responsible, the president is. Except, of course, that the "actor" is not exempt from liability when s/he acts outside the scope of authorithy of his or her office; then everything they do becomes personal. The "out" for that liability is to control the Justice Department. While 'Fredo remains in office, that control is complete. But that ends in January '09 at the latest. The statute of limitations on many things Mr. Cheney is liable for won't run for quite some time after that.

The issue then becomes what does the next president want to do about it? Practically, that will depend as much on how many votes he or she has in Congress as much as who the president is.

Harry Reid should tell Cheney that he'll be required to preside over the Senate from now till 2009.

If it means changing Senate rules, then so be it. Reid might even impishly suggest a vote on changing Rule I to limit the Veep's power of delegation over the presiding officer's duties. Better to keep him occupied than skulking about fomenting wars.

so what powers exactly DOES dead eye have ???

The Veep has precisely two constitutional roles: to preside over the Senate, and to stay breathing in case the presidency becomes vacant. I think Rahm's approach is the best one: if OVP ain't part of the executive branch, then it doesn't get funded as part of the executive branch.

But the context for this is Texas, where real power lies in the hands of the Lieutenant Governor. Cheney's theory of Veep-Power is essentially that of Texas state government imposed upon the federal system.

Bush to Constitution:

You're not the boss of me!

Haha, EW! Brilliantiamento, and about time "some" in govt begin to use a little imagination.

I can "hear" the witless Rahm. As the realization finally hits that these people are really (as in for "real") out of control, then wtf is there to loose? May as well have some fun while, either we bring them down, or go down ourselves. Either way it will be fun. And that is the point, because fun is a word that Cheney (he of little imagination, which is how he got himself into the Libby/Wilson pickle) does not "get." He takes himself way too seriously (along with Lynn & Mary). When you are willing to have a little fun, the imagination is lubricated, and the patterns emerge. The patterns which always point the way to the truth, like a good whodunit.

As in: "At the very least, the Vice President should be consistent."

We need more of that sort of snark/truth from the Dem leadership!

Big Time just pulls these theories out of his ass, so I hate to dignify them with analysis. It is clear to anyone that Cheney is the President of the Senate, (not of the United States!), and that this role, subject to his tie-breaking power, is like that of any Speaker of any deliberative body in parliamentary systems. However, it may become important when the issue of who presides at the Cheney impeachment in the Senate arises. Chief Justice Roberts only would preside at Shrub's impeachment trial. The Constitution is silent on who would preside otherwise, so it would be the President of the Senate who would preside. Anyone want to bet that Big Time would willingly give up the right to preside over his own impeachment trial, just because, you know, it would be flagrantly unjust for him to do so? It is notable that the Senate can choose its own President pro tempore "....in the absence of the Vice President", but impeachment is not necessarily "absence". The Senator elected President pro tem would not have the power to tie-break, this power is explicitly vested in the Vice President. Before the 25th Amendment, there was no procedure for replacing a VP who died or ascended to the Presidency, and stayed vacant for as long as 4 years - seems unlikely that the Framers considered the Vice Presidency to be so important. I guess I would leave the last word to John Adams, who in a letter to Abigail Adams speaking about his Vice Presidency, wrote "My country has in its wisdom contrived for me the most insignificant office that ever the invention of man contrived or his imagination conceived."

Section 3, Clause 5: President pro tempore and other Senate officers

The Senate shall choose their other Officers, and also a President pro tempore, in the absence of the Vice President, or when he shall exercise the Office of the President of the United States.

[I]f this is snark, it is sawdust dry.

Nothing beats naked fact for snark. But beyond the rich satisfaction, wouldn't it be great if some bold civil servant treated the next "request," or however the schmo does it, for classified info or any other restricted accomodation from OVP as if it were from a non-executive entity? That person would be a hero.

OT, more or less.

Is anyone else worried that the whole upcoming "family jewels" CIA disclosure is a political act (by the most political administration in history)?

With an objective of creating another Bright Shining Object for the MSM, and the objective of creating a very dumbed-down baseline moral equivalence argument of: "Hey, if Bobby Kennedy was for assasinations, why is Gitmo ...and torture...and warrantless wiretapping...and abridgement of habeas corpus....and relentless politicization of the the criminal subpoena and prosecution power in pursuit of a one-party state (read: Permanent Republican Majority)...so bad?"

The Beltway crowd is SFD ("So Fucking Dumb") that they would eat it up.

OT, more or less.

Is anyone else worried that the whole upcoming "family jewels" CIA disclosure is a political act (by the most political administration in history)?

With an objective of creating another Bright Shining Object for the MSM, and the objective of creating a very dumbed-down baseline moral equivalence argument of: "Hey, if Bobby Kennedy was for assasinations, why is Gitmo ...and torture...and warrantless wiretapping...and abridgement of habeas corpus....and relentless politicization of the the criminal subpoena and prosecution power in pursuit of a one-party state (read: Permanent Republican Majority)...so bad?"

The Beltway crowd is SFD ("So Fucking Dumb") that they would eat it up.

It's refreshing to see Rahm use Cheney's secrecy against him; this sort of 'aikido politics' is long overdue from the Dems.

Per prostratedragon -- In our post-9/11 world, one can only hope that thousands of federal employees protect classified information and refuse to supply it to unauthorized parties ;-)

Here's hoping that Rahm keeps his proposal, the discussion, and his logic brief and simple.
(Silent prayer: Dear Rahm -- keep it iPod simple...!)

Via Thgink Progress, a new areticle out from Rolling Stone on how Big Dick Cheney gutted Bush's tepid steps on climate change. I love the sound of sharpening knives.


link to Rolling Stone

shiny object or not, here they are, the "family jewels," via a link form Guradian Unlimited article, http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,,2109513,00.html

family jewels: http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB222/index.htm

argh, the above is the "list of skeletons," the actual jewels will be "exposed" next week.

It's good to hear that Rahm is going to have an amendment to defund the OVP if it claims its not part of the executive branch.

Anyone got any theories on why the Dems don't play hardball politics with the Repubs when they have got shafted and treated like dirt when they where in the minority?

Ab initio, I'd hate to see the Dems display the same short-sighted, self-defeating, 'hammer-fisted' venalty that defined Delay, Hastert, Foley, et al. Bush prefers 'mano a mano' swaggering, and sending minions to harrass people in post-op hospital beds. No need for the Dems to repeat any of that behavior, please (!).

On the other hand, the philosophies embodied in the martial arts (i.e., karate, aikido, kendo) require self-mastery, self-discipline, patience, balance, and an emphasis on exploiting the opponent's weakness. I'd prefer the Dems go after these creeps in the spirit of kendo.

Less obnoxious pugilism; more "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," savvy, shrewdness, and skill, please ;-)

Not just scary, montag (good to see your tag again, btw), I think you could say that this article begins to lay the groundwork for impeachment and a war crimes prosecution against our Vice President.

Unbelievable (and out of character) reporting from the Washington Post about Cheney, with information about inner White House workings from all over the spectrum:

On Nov. 14, 2001, the day after Bush signed the commissions order, Cheney took the next big step. He told the U.S. Chamber of Commerce that terrorists do not "deserve to be treated as prisoners of war." [Read Cheney's full remarks]

The president had not yet made that decision. Ten weeks passed, and the Bush administration fought one of its fiercest internal brawls, before Bush ratified the policy that Cheney had declared: The Geneva Conventions would not apply to al-Qaeda or Taliban fighters captured on the battlefield.

Since 1949, Geneva had accorded protections to civilians and combatants in a war zone. Those protections varied with status, but the prevailing U.S. and international view was that anyone under military control -- even an alleged war criminal -- has some rights. Rumsfeld, elaborating on the position Cheney staked out, cast that interpretation aside. All captured fighters in Afghanistan, he said at a news briefing, are "unlawful combatants" who "do not have any rights" under Geneva.

At the White House, Bellinger sent Rice a blunt -- and, he thought, private -- legal warning. The Cheney-Rumsfeld position would place the president indisputably in breach of international law and would undermine cooperation from allied governments. Faxes had been pouring in at the State Department since the order for military commissions was signed, with even British authorities warning that they could not hand over suspects if the U.S. government withdrew from accepted legal norms.


On Sunday's Page One. What's going down in Washington, this time?

The question is, what will happen in this scuffle? Does anyone up there really care about security? I think not. My personal prediction if this is taken to ISOO… nothing will happen! Why do I say this? Look only as far as Mr. William J. Leondard- Director, ISOO. Prior to Bill Leonard’s showing up at ISOO, and his eventual appointment to the position of director, Bill Leonard served in the HQ Office of the Defense Investigative Service (later to become the Defense Security Service). So what you say; what does that have to do with anything? Well, the Defense Security Service has oversight authority for all defense contractors performing on contracts with classified peramaters attached to them. This included (and includes) contractors such as Halliburton, Lockheed/Martin, Boeing, General Dynamics, etc., etc. The list goes on to the tune of approximately 11,000 + cleared defense contractors. During the midddle 1990’s there was tremendous pressure from the defense industry to change the oversight role and mission of the Defense Security Service. No small part of that pressure came from the industrial giants. At that time, Bill Leonard was working in DSS/HQ, Alexandria, VA along with Gregory A. Gwash- DSS, Deputy Director for Industrial Security. Bill Leonard and Gregory Gwash worked closely with the corporate facility security officers (FSO’s) of the defense contractor giants. For example, Lockheed/Martin, Boeing, then McDonnell/Douglas, etc. So what, you say. Leonard and Gwash, working in close concert with those defense industrial FSO’s penned a new Industrial Security Manual (DoD 5220.22-M); one much more open ended, with reduced security requirements, and one subject to much more intrepretation. Should I say, one much more favorable to industry? Again, so what? This was all passed, and signed off by Pentagon authorities to the exclusion of the other signatory User Agencies to the Industrial Security Program. No one ever bothered to actually legally change the Industrial Security Regualtion (ISR 5220.22-R, dated December 1985) that the ISM is supposed to be based upon. Why not? Because that would have taken to much coordination (dare I say visibility) with all the other authorities in the twenty plus other signatory User Agencies to the National Industrial Security Program (NISP). All those other User Agencies would have had their collective input into the regulatory process. Since those days of the middle 1990’s, industry’s influence upon the government regulatory process has continued to grow. There has been far too much movement of individuals in government regulatory oversight roles to industry and vice versa. In too many instances, allegances have be blurred; and what’s best for industry is not always in the best interest of the nation, or national security.
And what about Greg Gwash? Well, shortly after completion of the penning of the new industry frendly ISM, he accepted a position as the corporate FSO of the Boeing Company, Seattle. Hummm, now how does that work? You go directly from a position as the oversight authority for 11,000 + defense contractors to the corporate FSO of one of the largest defense contractors in the world.
And in the last six years it’s only gotten worse. So, what will happen to Cheney? My prediction… nothing!

Posted by: Jody >

Is that you, freepatriot?

Oops! I posted incorrectly with a < in front, I guess.
Meant to post:

I like Dick!
Posted by Jody

Is that you, freepatriot?

"Condi might manage to shut down Gitmo if Cheney remains uninformed of the meetings to shut it down."

Good luck on keeping Cheney out of ANY loop he chooses to remain in.

Considering Faiz's post this morning at Think Progress, keeping information away from Cheney may be a much taller order than you imagine, Marcy. There's apparently a double-secret spy society hiding in our executive branch and intelligence community.

Here's a snip...
"Thus Bellinger discovered an unannounced standing order: Documents prepared for the national security adviser, another White House official said, were “routed outside the formal process” to Cheney, too. The reverse did not apply."

The headline of the post is "Washington Post Profile Reveals Stealthy Cheney Spies On White House Staffers."

Reminds me of Hitler, Crowley and Nixon all rolled up into one very dangerous VP.

Sunday Morning Bible Verse...
2 Thessalonians ch2, v7-10;
"Then that lawless one...will be revealed; that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, (sound like Cheney's resume?) because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved."

'The Love of The Truth,' what a poignant, poetic phrase... Sounds like a quality most of us share who read these "left-leaning" blogs.

Truth = left leaning? Maybe so, considering how fluid the term "left leaning' has become.

Isn't that the essential reason why the blogs have flourished? That we all are seeking, desperately, the real Truth that the mainstream media refuses to reveal?

Lovers of truth?

"Don't you want somebody to love?"

Maybe it was "Truth" they (Jefferson Airplane) meant all along.

All this slicing ad dicing about what the Democrats should do with Cheney is a fucking waste of time. It's going to end up just like the Gonzalez fiasco - no where.

Why don't the Democrats do the one thing that just about 100% of the 70% that are against the war and Bush can understand and relate to?

Impeach Cheney.

So far the House Democratic leadership has stiffled this bill. What exactly will it take for the Democrats to take this step? Since Cheney's declaring himself separate and above the Constituton didn't do it my guess it will never happen


A careful reading of the story of Cheney's coup against a feeble executive reveals that paragraphs 7 through 10 were inserted in haste by a powerful editorial hand. The banging of colliding metaphors in an otherwise carefully written piece is evidence of last-minute interpolations by a bad editor whom no one has the power to rewrite.

That in turn suggests that this piece has been ready to run for some time. Insertions like the one about the veep's office not being part of the executive branch and seriatim "softenings" show that the decision to jam it into the paper at the end of June, when only cats and the homeless are around the read the paper, was made at the last minute.

Why? My guess is that this series was held during the debate over the supplemental funding of the Iraq war and that Downie or someone at the top held it back until Gellman and others started carrying snub-nose .38s to work under their seersuckers in sheer frustration.

A key element of the coup is also ignored: the role of the press as revealed in the Libby scandal (Russert et al. reporting to Cheney) and the WaPo itself: Note in particular paragraph seven the phrase that Cheney's subversive roles "went undetected." The correct verb is "unreported."

This series is a landscape of an internal war. Parts of it are still smoking and some reputations are visibly dying--anonymously, for the moment. The journalistic graves registration people will go in later and tag the corpses.

italics off

auriga, I don't know about the truth of your comment, but the style is wonderful!


Good point. However, I have not seen the Dems display any kendo skills either. Unfortunately, FU Cheney will take advantage of any perceived weakness with more FUs. It may pay to give them a taste of their own medicine.

isn't it pathetic that it is a disrespected putz like rahm that must make the call for such action? no one in congress even has the guts to call for action under the law to impeach and restrict the action of the exumafia.
something wicked this way comes

die italics, die.

"My guess is that this series was held during the debate over the supplemental funding of the Iraq war and that Downie or someone at the top held it back until Gellman and others started carrying snub-nose .38s to work under their seersuckers in sheer frustration."

Uh-huh. Gellman's probably going to do a chat on this, though I doubt any questions about it's spiking will make it through. But let's remember: he was the one who did the proper reporting on Iraq's lack of Nasty Death Weapons of Death, unembedded, while Queen Judy swanned around in uniform under her special arrangement with MET Alpha.

Right on the nose 'pseudonymous in nc' I just flipped over and this was at the top of the page:

Web Q&A: Monday, 1 p.m. ET
» Reporter Barton Gellman, will be online on Monday, June 25 to answer readers' questions about the Cheney series. Submit a Question Here.<<

Another point. If the OVP is not part of the executive branch, any discussions regarding the executive branch that flow to or through the OVP will not be entitled to executive privilege.

As one of my friends put it, if Cheney isn't in the executive branch, he doesn't get Air Force Two (or any other of the perks and privileges of the VP). And as President of the Senate, he should be required (since his only other Constitutional duty is to be on hand in case Shrub falls over fill in when Shrub is out of whack) to be there all the time the Senate is in session.

(If I were Reid, I'd be trying to find a way to have the Senate in session at least 20 hours a day for the next year and a half.)

Ishmael: [W]ouldn't it be great if some bold civil servant treated the next "request," ... from OVP as if it were from a non-executive entity? That person would be a hero.

Oh, yes, yes, yes. I had the usual disdain for petty government bureaucrats until I became one. It was quite an education. I spent ten years as a curator for a state history museum, and the most important routine decisions I made were about acquiring new objects for the collection. I found that while I could never accept an object on my own authority -- that took higher approval -- I could always reject it, just by declining to sign off on it.

It is utterly delicious that Cheney is finding that a few little people can shake his Dark Tower by refusing to sign off on a violation of bureaucratic procedure. Bless them.

Here is an article that strikes home. I’ve written about similar situations regarding some people I personally am aware of. The game is the same, just different victims. I would urge everyone to so the following:

1. Exert as much effort as possible into getting friends and colleagues to pressure the Senate into passing the whistle blower protection law (S. 274) they are currently letting sit on hold which would grant whistleblower protections to Federal and Defense Dept. employees.

2. Encourage people, who hold information that would be of use in holding the wrongdoers accountable in any of the unethical or illegal activities going in the various government agencies, and within defense contractors, to come forward and report what they know. Reports may be sent to The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and also, I would at this point suggest POGO as POGO is currently working on some serious related cases. It may be possible to tag on and the combined information would probably support everyone’s cases.

3. Help publicize all of this by posting blogs, and leaving comments on other’s blogs to help keep things stirred up (so they can’t just make all the complaints go “gently into the good night”). And write your government officials, such as House and Senate elected representatives; you may not get a response, but keep a record of all such contacts you have made for future reference. If you possess sensitive or classified, information, I don’t recommend you disclose this in a public arena, but write an unleaded version, which shows the corrupt behavior, or cover-up without giving the sensitive details. Let the people you write to know if you have the sensitive/classified details, and that when someone with the proper clearances is put onto your case, you will be happy to cooperate with an official investigation. (If you know material is sensitive or classified, and disclose it, then you will most likely be held accountable, as you signed the standard form 312 briefing that is an agreement between yourself and the government that you will not improperly disclose classified government information. You do not want to end up in Federal Prison, so be careful with this.)

4. As Winston Churchill said…. Never, ever give up!


Whistle-Blower's Fight For Pension Drags On By Lyndsey Layton The Washington Post Saturday 07 July 2007Former defense official seeks private relief bill. From a cramped motor home in a Montana campground where Internet access is as spotty as the trout, Richard Barlow wakes each morning to battle Washington.

Once a top intelligence officer at the Pentagon who helped uncover Pakistan's efforts to acquire nuclear weapons, Barlow insisted on telling the truth, and it led to his undoing.

He complained in 1989 that top officials in the administration of President George H.W. Bush - including the deputy assistant secretary of defense - were misleading Congress about the Pakistani program. He was fired and stripped of his security clearances. His intelligence career was destroyed; his marriage collapsed.

Federal investigations found Barlow was unfairly fired, winning him sympathy from dozens of Democratic and Republican lawmakers and public interest groups. But for 17 years, he has fought without success to gain a federal pension, blocked at every turn by legal and political obstacles also faced by other federal intelligence whistle- blowers.

"This case has been put before the Congress to right a wrong, and for various reasons, they've failed to do it," said Robert Gallucci, dean of the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and an expert in nonproliferation. "It's infuriating."

Barlow, 52, and his supporters want funding added to the defense authorization bill to be debated by the Senate when it returns from recess next week. The mechanism Barlow hopes to use - a private relief bill that benefits a specific individual - is increasingly rare and, in his case, still faces hurdles.

Gallucci has known Barlow since the late 1980s, when Barlow was tracking the work of A.Q. Khan, the Pakistani scientist amassing materials to produce nuclear weapons. Some of the men setting policy at the Defense Department at the time of Barlow's firing - Stephen J. Hadley, Paul D. Wolfowitz and Dick Cheney - resurfaced in the current Bush administration, which Democrats and others have accused of shaping intelligence on the Iraq war to fit political goals.

Barlow's intelligence work began at the CIA, where he analyzed nuclear programs in other countries. He contributed to the National Intelligence Estimates and presented findings to national security agencies, the White House and congressional committees. He received the CIA's Exceptional Accomplishment Award in 1988.

The next year, he became the first intelligence officer for the Office of the Secretary of Defense, charged with analyzing nuclear weapons developments involving foreign governments. He answered to Gerald Brubaker, the acting director of the Office of Non- Proliferation. Supervising Brubaker was Victor Rostow, the principal director. Rostow reported to Deputy Assistant Secretary James Hinds, who reported to Assistant Secretary Stephen J. Hadley.

At the time, the government was poised to sell $1.4 billion worth of new F-16 fighter planes to Pakistan to help the mujaheddin fight the Soviets in Afghanistan. But Congress, through two laws passed in 1985, had forbidden the sale of any equipment that could be used to deliver nuclear bombs.

Barlow wrote an analysis for then-Secretary Dick Cheney that concluded the planned F-16 sale violated this law. Drawing on detailed, classified studies, Barlow wrote about Pakistan's ability, intentions and activities to deliver nuclear bombs using F-16s it had acquired before the law was passed.

Barlow discovered later that someone rewrote his analysis so that it endorsed the sale of the F-16s. Arthur Hughes, the deputy assistant secretary of defense, testified to Congress that using the F-16s to deliver nuclear weapons "far exceeded the state of art in Pakistan" - something Barlow knew to be untrue.

In the summer of 1989, Barlow told Brubaker, Rostow and Michael MacMurray, the Pakistan desk officer in charge of military sales to Pakistan who prepared Hughes's testimony, that Congress had been misled. Within days, Barlow was fired.

"They clearly didn't want the nonproliferation policy to get in the way of their regional policy," Gallucci said. "They were worried someone like Rich [Barlow], in his stickler approach, would insist that if there's going to be testimony on the Hill about the F-16 aircraft, that the answers be full and truthful. He was a thorn in their side, and they went after him. And they did a very good job of screwing up his life."

In a 2000 deposition provoked by Barlow's subsequent lawsuit, Hadley said he remembered underlings proposing to terminate an employee in August 1989 but did not recall "someone named Richard Barlow." In a separate deposition, Wolfowitz also testified he could not recall Barlow. But Wolfowitz told Congress in 1990 that the retaliation Barlow faced was wrong and the government was legally obligated to keep Congress informed about Pakistan's nuclear capability.

"There have been times on that issue when I specifically sensed that people thought we could somehow construct a policy on a house of cards that the Congress wouldn't know what the Pakistanis were doing," Wolfowitz told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

After a 1993 joint probe, the inspector general at the State Department concluded that Barlow had been fired as a reprisal, while the inspector generals at the CIA and the Defense Department maintained that the Pentagon was within its rights to fire Barlow. Congress directed the General Accounting Office (now the Government Accountability Office) to conduct its own investigation, which was completed in 1997 and largely vindicated Barlow.

Barlow's security clearances were restored, but he was unable to get rehired permanently by the government because of the cloud over his record, he said. Instead, he has worked as a contractor for a range of federal agencies, including the CIA, the State Department, the FBI and Sandia National Laboratories.

That left him without the $89,500 annual pension and health insurance that Barlow believes the government owes him.

He faces no organized opposition now but has so far been stymied by government inertia, the passage of time, congressional procedural errors, and endless debates over how much money he's due and the proper legislative vehicle for his pension.

Twenty Senators and eight legislative committees have considered his case over the years without resolving it, suggesting a larger dilemma: No process exists to compensate fired whistle-blowers in the intelligence field, and those who retaliate against them face no criminal penalties.

A 1998 law instead allows employees of the CIA, parts of the Defense Department, the FBI and the National Security Agency to notify their agency's inspector general that they intend to disclose a matter of "urgent concern" to congressional intelligence committees. But there is no remedy if they suffer retaliation for using this legal channel.

"There just isn't a venue for someone like him," said Danielle Brian, executive director of the Project on Government Oversight, a nonprofit organization that investigates and exposes corruption. "He was trying to prevent lies to Congress about something of global importance. And he didn't even go to Congress - all he did was suggest that Congress not be lied to."

Brian and Gallucci believe that had Barlow's alarms been heeded in 1989, Khan might have been deterred from building the world's largest atomic black market - a network that has since supplied nuclear weapons technology to Libya, Iran and North Korea.

Some Hill staffers say they worry that granting Barlow a pension will cause hundreds of other injured whistle-blowers to demand similar treatment. Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa), a known champion of whistle-blowers who supports Barlow's quest, is contacted each week by four new whistle-blowers looking for help, said his spokeswoman, Beth Levine. But Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.) is considering sponsoring legislation providing Barlow a pension or a lump-sum payment, a staffer said.

Bingaman attempted to sponsor a private relief bill for Barlow once before, in 1998. But another senator persuaded colleagues to refer it to the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, which hears lawsuits that seek money from the federal government in excess of $10,000. During the case, which lasted four years, the Justice Department invoked a "state secrets" privilege to block the court from seeing most of Barlow's evidence, according to Barlow's pro bono lawyer, Joseph Ostoyich.

In 2002, the court found that Barlow was not entitled to protection under whistle-blower laws. "It was a galling situation," Ostoyich said. "There was plenty of evidence ... and all of [it] ... was taken out of the court's hands. I've never seen anything like it." Barlow's original pro bono attorney, Paul C. Warnke, who was President Jimmy Carter's chief arms-control negotiator, died in 2001.

An attempt several months ago by Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.) to sponsor a private relief bill for Barlow encountered resistance from House Armed Services Committee lawyers who said there was no precedent for it, according to her staff. Next, she tried to offer a simple resolution stating that Congress supported Barlow in his efforts, but that was thwarted by the Rules Committee, which was juggling more than 100 other requests deemed more pressing. Since his most recent employment contract at Sandia ended, Barlow has been living in a motor home that he parks in Montana during the summer and drives to Arizona or California in the winter. Most of his possessions, including 200 pounds of documents related to his fight, are sitting in a storage locker he rents for $100 a month.

Most weekdays, he pushes his cause in cellphone calls and e-mails to Washington from his motor home, dogging Hill staffers with a tenacity that seems bottomless and can be off-putting. "This is such an extraordinary case," Brian said. "He was trying to say 'Wait a minute, Congress needs to be told the truth because they're making important decisions about nuclear proliferation,' and the guy is living in a trailer."

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