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July 03, 2007


OMG!!! Marcy's on WBAI's Democracy Now -- RIGHT NOWW!!! WOO HOO!!! Awesome!!!!

Marcy, you were great on Dem Now, although it's only a little comfort for the deep injustice and total fucking letdown from that bush that I feel so robbed and violated.

Agree all you state about Bush and now his commuting Libby's sentence. Yes Clinton engaged in classical federal perjury and his ass should have swung like Libby's too.But must admit I like blowjobs too from my wife .

This is so vulgar, that I can't abide it. I deliberately avoided reading the Starr reports and the testimony of Clinton, because I did not want to soil my mind with his personal business. He let all of the country down by his behavior, whether you agree with his sexual addiction "rights" or not. He could have been a target of a spy...in fact, Lewinsky may have set him up for his downfall. He exercised bad judgment, and I defended him until the night he admitted that he had lied. Lying is perjury, and he was a guilty as Libby, whether you are a democrat or a republican. This country needs to have leaders who have some character! Dammit!

Clinton didn't have it, Bush doesn't have it, and I see very few candidates who have it, with the exception of John Edwards. I am as angry as everybody else here that Libby is not going to jail. I think Bush should be impeached, along with Cheney, but I am sick of vulgarity, no matter where it comes from!

I don't know of anything more vulgar than treason. Bush lied, people died.

I thought perjury is lying in covering up a crime. What Clinton lied about was no crime, unethical maybe, but no crime. And he did not "obstruct justice" as Libby is guilty of.

I know all the folks on this board have likely already made these calls but just in case there are a few new readers.

White House Phone Numbers
Comments: 202-456-1111
Switchboard: 202-456-1414
FAX: 202-456-2461

U.S. Capitol Switchboard: 202-224-3121
Listing of U.S. Senators with phone numbers
Listing of U.S. House members

Call now!! I just did and made sure that each of my calls included the term obstruction of justice and need for investigation of both Bush and Cheney.

The question for the Fem debates must be, "would you be willing to pardon GWB, Cheney and/or any of their staff?"

I was reading over at TPM a piece on the recent SCOTUS ruling where a man who actually served in the service was asking for a reduction in his sentence for purjury. DENIED! So why is it that SCOTUS thinks this mans sentence was sound but Scooter walks. Marcy is there anything that SCOTUS can do without waiting for appeals ?

a question: Did Fitz ever officially end his investigation? (i.e. is the grand jury that heard evidence from Woodward et al still empanelled, and competent to hear additonal testimony?)

p.lukasiak - I think after the Libby verdict, Fitzgerald stated that the investigation remained open. Fitzgerald said specifically that the investigation was "inactive" but if new information came in, that status could change.

Am I living in some parallel universe? Clinton didn't get away with anything. He confessed, for God's sake. He cut a deal with Robert Ray (Ken Starr's replacement) in which he admitted he lied under oath, paid a $25,000 fine, and had his law license suspended for 5 years. The reason he was never indicted is because, unlike Libby, he finally came clean with the prosecutor.

Here's the quote from Fitz's statement after the Libby verdict:

QUESTION: Sir, is your investigation over now, now that this trial's over? Now that you have this verdict, is this investigation -- is your special counsel investigation over?

FITZGERALD: I would say this: I do not expect to file any further charges. Basically, the investigation was inactive prior to the trial. I would not expect to see any further charges filed. We're all going back to our day jobs.

If information comes to light or new information comes to us that would warrant us taking some action, we'll, of course, do that.

But I would not create the expectation that any of us will be doing further investigation at this point. We see the investigation as inactive.


I am really incensed by this WaPo piece "A Decision Made Largely Alone". How strange that SAOs leaked that the decision was made alone rather than them leaking that Cheney told 'W' he had better commute this sentence and fast or Libby would start talking and he has the goods on all of them. And of course they would never leak that Karl whispered in Bush's ear, "You can't let down the base. Heaven forbid, we let down the base."

Why doesn't the Post use a little judgement instead of printing everything they want them to print.

'I think Bush should be impeached, along with Cheney, but I am sick of vulgarity, no matter where it comes from!'

Not to flame, Margaret, but do you really feel that emptywheel's use of the word 'blowjob' - or was it 'cigar' that you were concerned about - is so offensive that it merits chastisement in the same breath as Bush's contempt for the rule of law?

For my part, I'm sick of civility displayed to those who display contempt for the life and limb of others. No, seriously I am. Look at the way everyone gets the vapours when someone accuses a prominent (Republican) politician of lying. That's what I call a real obscentity. And it has consequences just as serious as anything Clinton did.

"Noah, like everyone else who supports Bush's commutation, is ignorant of basic facts in the case, and basic facts of law"

Can not we just say Noah is ignorant and cover all bases at once?

My sense of blogging decorum is an evolving thing. My first exposure to political blogging, tracking information Plame, came at Fire Dog Lake where my sense of blogging etiquette was tested after some incidents of off color comments full of earnest patriotic sentiment I made, the wretched Foghat flame dialogue and where finally much fighting over the chocolate pear cake I was making for Christmas subjected me too heavy scorn-deserved or undeserved I am not sure. But I have learned from these excesses.

In any event Marcy's posts and the comments over here for some time have been my favorite source of information regarding things political. And I suppose the saucy, seasoned and profoundly informed tenor of these threads is what I appreciate. So hopefully I have passed through the purgatorial fires of the blogsphere and landed on a more laid back, fitting tone and rhythm in sharing ideas with the folks here who regularly amaze me with their knowledge, insight, commitment and humor. So I will take a moment here in the soggy cigar thread just to express some gratitude. Thank you Marcy for being out front in these things and thank all of you for your sharing in these things. My sense is that we have reached a tipping point. Please forgive me my excesses and my sporadic attention to detail. HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!!! Remember the French were our allies in the first principles of things democratic. We share a hatred of despotism crossing linquistic frontiers.

Given that Slate's chief political reporter, John Dickerson, almost certainly lied about what Ari Fleischer told him in Africa about Wilson's wife, I wouldn't expect editor Jacob Weisberg to support anything but the Bush Administration's position on Libby.

(It's obvious that two Time reporters were tipped off about Plame, and that John Dickerson was one of them. Jacob Weisberg inherited that problem when he hired Dickerson from Time—or hired him in spite of it, knowing his role. With Noah's column, Weisberg continues to try to make lemonade out of the CIA leak scandal, which nevertheless taints every word of Slate's coverage.)

No blow jobs for Mr Margaret I presume... that is unless they have a secret sign like... tongue in cheek or something like that. If I could make the secret sign here in the comment section of TheNextHurrah, I would and thereby spare margaret the social offense of using the word blow job fellatio. There that's better. Please, don't confuse vulgarity with obscenity... now back to the post.

Men and women have been hiding extra-marital affairs in monogomist cultures for years. That they have an affair is neither vulgar or obscene. If you must judge it, then judge it fairly, as an act of disloyalty. That is the underlying crime. Lying about it, although unprincipled, is the process crime. (I knew these repug talking points would come in handy.)

The moment Libby found out he was going to jail is the very same Bush commuted his jail sentence.

It was as if Libby had a deal: Keep your mouth shut about the rest of the co-conspiritors and you will do no jailtime. If there was a deal, it is not only obscene, it is criminal.

actually, I call it an obscenity, not an obscentity. Never mind.

Margaret, do you realize how much you sound like Barbara Bush, who didn't want to waste her "beautiful mind" on the sight of all the body bags coming home?
True, Clinton's personal sin was reprehensible, and so was his lie about it, but not all lies are equal; his didn't constitute perjury, because it wasn't material to the case at hand, the Paula Jones civil suit. Furthermore, when the Senate tried him on the House's charges of perjury and obstruction of justice, he wasn't convicted. Libby WAS convicted by a jury of lying, committing perjury and obstructing an investigation into a much more serious offense than Clinton's consensual affair.
The real vulgarity was committed by Starr and his GOP cohorts who dredged every salacious detail out of Lewinsky and then made certain that the cable networks ran with them 24/7 for months on end. Strange that the same interest wasn't shown when Poppy Bush refused to andwer questions about his alleged long-term affair with his aide, Jennifer Fitzgerald, and Sonny had to tell reporters on his behalf that the answer to the adultery question was a "big N-O"
I'm sickened by those who strain at gnats over questions of character that have to do with sex, but swallow camels of lies and deceit about much more serious public policy matters that have had deadly consequences.

Impeach Bush? Impeach Cheney? Impeachment's too good for 'em! Indict 'em for treason, yes. Impeach them? No. I'm still holding out hope for the disclosure of Sealed vs. Sealed, and the likelihood that Cheney is the second sealed. Are there no disgruntled ex-WH staffers to blab? Are the agencies so loyal to the President that they hold the Office of the President in such contempt that they would continue to hide, dissemble, criminally omit and otherwise stonewall? Come on, people! Oh, by the way. Happy Independence Day (if that isn't a contradiction in terms in a week like this one)!

All good points elsie in OK. Who complains about the vegetable when the meat is rancid?

Way to go Marcy I think this one is great it has your readers all fired up keep up the geat work

People fear this administration. Bush/Cheney has power. Alot of power was shown yesterday. Alot of criminality. This administration does not care about the rule of law. How do you cross an administration that will violate the law to protect themselves??

I can't type right today I ment great work

CSiM, The only way to indict a sitting POTUS or VPOTUS is to bring articles of impeachment to the house floor. If they vote (don't remember if it requires 50% or a super majority) then the impeached offical is tried by the seante.

Okay, after the pileon...you miss my main point: I excuse Libby nothing. He should be sentenced to life in prison for treason. But, Clinton could have been compromised by a spy for...whoever, and we could have been in deep trouble, internationally, for it. It was reckless and inexcusable, and it is moral equivocating to compare his lies with Libby's. Presidents, members of government, no matter who they are SHOULD NOT LIE!

I am livid that Bush enables liars and I am furious that Clinton blew (no pun intended) the support of the overwhelming majority of citizens which led to a Republican-led Congress and George Bush's election. Twice! These behaviors have consequences, whether private or public....I do not excuse Starr or the investigation. I simply feel the coarsening of behavior, the lack of integrity, and the lack of character in our Presidents in my lifetime is so depressing. I feel for my 7 year old grandniece and the world which she is inheriting: vulgar, dishonest, unjust, lawless.


My point was simple. Clinton perjured himself. Libby, however, perjured himself and obstructed an investigation. Anyone who conflates the two acts is ignoring the fact that Libby's crime was double, the lie and what the lie covered up.

Look am a old time conservative no not a neo con Zionist .I totally detest Bush and cabal as much as you on the Left.Clinton should have went down for pure perjury lies no debate about that .So should Libby do his jail time also. And yes Adolph Bush and Herr Cheney should go on trial as International War criminals. As far as Clinton's blow jobs would rather prefer he had Hillary blowjob him as my wife does me.But suspect Hillary prefers her lessie lawyer friends from New York .

Why are conservatives always so interested in the sex lives of other people?? I swear there is an underlying obsession.

I don't care who gives who a blow job as long as it's not a child.

John Rowland:

Elsie in OK was correct: Clinton *did not* commit perjury, because his lies were not about a material fact. (Yes, he lied to the grand jury.)

Libby lied to the investigators and to the grand jury about matters material to the investigation of who outed Ms Plame.
Perjury. Obstruction of justice.

just yesterday, the president claimed
that mr. libby's punishment did not
fit the crime. that simply is
not borne out by any reliable
evidence. to wit:

courtesy of talkingpointsmemo, we
learn of an aging war vet, with 25 years
of honorable military service, with failing
health -- and he is a law enforement worker
to boot! -- sentenced to 33 months
for two (not four!) counts of felony perjury
before a grand jury, investigating a gun
company case -- rita v. u.s. -- the
opinion was published june 21, 2007

. . .The basic crime in this case concerns two false statements which Victor Rita, the petitioner, made under oath to a federal grand jury. The jury was investigating a gun company called InterOrdnance. . .

-- justice breyer's purality opinion,
in rita v. u.s., 551 u.s. ___ (2007)

and, from usa today reporting:

. . .The justices upheld a 33-month sentence given to Victor Rita for perjury and making false statements. Rita is a 25-year military veteran and former civilian federal employee. . . The prison term falls within the guidelines range and was upheld by the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, answering the question of whether sentences within the guidelines ordinarily will be considered reasonable. . .

mr. libby's sentence was at the low end of the guidelines.

so -- where are we on the commutation of
the sentence of VICTOR A. RITA, mr. president?

seriously -- i propose a FREE RITA campaign!

let's get on it folks -- if bush really
did this solely because the sentence was
excessive -- LET'S GET ALL OVER THIS!

let us put the lie to mr. bush: he
simply did it to avoid scooter's almost
certainly-coming-squealing fdrom a jail-
cell about the involvement of cheney and
bush in the c.i.a. leak case.

Bush to FBI and CIA: 'f*ck you.'

Silly me; until today, I had not realized that blow jobs wreak the same kind of death and destruction that WMD and nuclear materials produce. Accordinig to Bush, blowjobs are worse than losing track of rogue nuclear materials. Wow, I feel so much safer now.

I have no idea what FBI agents must feel today, but I personally view Bush's pardon as an affront to every single FBI agent, CIA agent, and cop in this nation. People make all kinds of mistakes, but many feel remorse and become better people for their errors. BushCo, on the other hand, shows no remorse, no insight, no learning, no grappling with the implications of their poor decision-making.
To call this pardon "insulting" to doesn't even scratch the surface.

Let's hope the press can realize it's about more than How It Affects the 2008 Elections, and pay more attention to what happens when people subvert the law for their own purposes.

J. Thomason, great message; backatcha.

Nola, great research, keep it coming, we'll spread the word.

Marcy, I appreciate the difference, but, the overall climate is the same: lying, hiding and destroying people's faith in government and the application of the law. The damage done by Libby/Bush/Cheney, of course, far exceeds, so far as we know, Clinton's sexual addictions. It is the arguments given by some of the commenters, here, that bother me, because they reflect the effects of that climate: excusing one kind of lying over another. Lies are lies, and Presidents and their minions should not do it. Otherwise, we "hear the melody [of Fitzgerald's message] and miss the message."

margaret, you are still missing the point.

What Bush and Cheney have been doing is subverting the entire government for political ends: the 'loyal Bushies' in every position they could get them into, particularly the DoJ - why do you think that was so important to them?

I think it may be time to start pressuring from the bottom up. Start OPEN and public investigations of the lowest level people. Most of these people didn't come to these jobs wealthy, they NEED these jobs. Look at what Monica G. did when there was even the hint that they may be looking at her; PANIC! Libby is a lawyer; the thought of court testimony doesn't scare him in the least. It would terrify the "rank and file"! If Waxman picked 10 of the flunkies and started making noises about charges that could, at least, cost them those relatively high paying jobs I’d bet one of them will start singing. He’s got to have enough evidence to start investigations on a few low level people.

The majority of us out there that don’t push $100k/year will tell you, threaten their new and otherwise unattainable lifestyle; that will get their attention fastest.

Also has anyone seen in the MSM anything about the problem with the POTUS commuting as opposed to pardoning? Or do you think this is going to be ignored?

EW, I've been out of town for awhile and away from the toobz, and my catching up on things has been pretty cursory given yesterdays bombshell from King George. So this observation may be way off base, but I got the impression that you (or a commenter) thought that the Cheney series in the WaPo read like a political obit, speculating that Cheney's upcoming surgery may be the excuse needed for him to "spend more time with his family".

It seems to me that commuting Libby's sentence ought to put that theory right to bed. Clearly, Cheney is not going quietly into the night. In fact, just like Gonzo at Justice, Cheney is a nice firewall for Bush. No one wants to remove Bush if it means Cheney will ascend the throne. Is it possible to impeach them both simultaneously or must it be done one at a time?

The other worrying aspect of this is the indication that Cheney is still near and dear to W's heart. As someone mentioned on Hardball yesterday, Bush has nothing to lose by attacking Iran, which Cheney desperately wants. Had Bush let Libby go to jail, I might have believed that Cheney's influence was indeed waning, but not now.

And one final question for the lawyers present. Can we add witness tampering to the obstruction of justice charge? If Bush just bought Libby's silence, doesn't that constitute witness tampering? IANAL, so thought I would ask...

PJEvans: ..."subverting the entire government."

The entire government which is you, them and the Constitution is "subverted" when lies are the underpinning of that government. And, then, there is lying to oneself........

We have, no confidence in government or in ourselves, deaths of thousands of innocent people, including our soldiers, maimed soldiers, children, and a culture, theirs and ours (Iraq), all because of lies.

Gracious! What is it about my point that you find disagreement with? Is it because I equate Clinton's lack of character with Libby's? Well, lies are lies, no matter who makes them, and Fitzgerald made it clear that he would follow the TRUTH no matter where it led him....The truth about Clinton ruined the democratic party, destroyed its power just when it would have heped to control Bush, because the American people were fed up. They are fed up, again, but, this time, it's too late. Bush has taken power to the extreme, and we are in great danger because of it. I am pleaing for honesty and character in our Presidents. Or, do you not have ANY idea WHAT THAT CONSISTS OF?


Go read about Whitewater and Lewinsky angain, because you missed something there: the whole f*cking thing was run by the GOP right-wing nutjobs, purely to get Clinton. They didn't quite win, because he didn't leave office - if he had, they were hoping to get Newt or someone similar into the White House. They invented the entire thing. There was, literally, no case. It was purely partisan.

That's the difference. Libby is a straightforward legal case of perjury and obstruction of justice. The only thing about it that's partisan is the reaction to it. It isn't a case of Democrats trying to get Republicans, no matter how hard people try to make it sound that way.

While I largely agree with your comments, I don't believe attempts to justify or lessen the misdeeds of Bill Clinton are necessary. In my opinion, there are no parallels to be drawn.
Bill Clinton's actions, while deplorable, never threatened or civil liberties or undermined the fabric of our democracy.

The brazen criminality of the Bush Administration stands without historical precedent and should be of grave concern to all Americans regardless of political inclinations.

Each circumstance should be considered independently.

Tim Noah wants to hit the same gravy train that full-fledged GOP/Media Complex members enjoy. Simple as that.

Elsie I did twenty big ones as a South Bronx cop . Yea three gunbattles there 1969-70.Last thirteen was a detective and yea worked the John Gotti crew I knew John and his family. But Elsie woman Asst. D.A.'S and judges were forever trying to perjury trap me . But I only shared honest truths and would never ever want to see a innocent man burnt . So I am sorry but Clinton Felony enagaged in perjury .Yea Libby did too and both their asses should have swung .

In New York police time could care less who I took down arrested .Worked with the Queens Office FBI and we took down some big politicos and big buck lawyers .Agree with some of you women the word " blowjob " even here in print is offensive .Not a Puritan goody goody I get my blowjobs from my wife often but think that should be between us and not on a post here .

The missing point is that the "crimes" which Clinton committed did not warrant the Impeachment, but the lies did. Bush lied to get us into war, and he should be Impeached. Lies are the underpinnings of both beahviors, and the results, while differing in intensity of violence to humanity (war vs. unhealthy sexual practices), are the same. People lost respect for the President, government, and lost faith in what our leaders said. They have lost faith in Bush, and the pressure to Impeach should increase, if only the numbers in Congress could make it happen. But, that is where Clinton's mistakes in behavior have led us...to a Republican-dominated Congress (even if the majority is technically with the Democrats). So....

Maybe, the last President who didn't lie to us was George Washington? Any thoughts on that?

"the really dangerous Dick" -perfect

The M.S.M behaves just like a concerned troll,they concede a little so that they can get on with their current distraction. Some early posters when presented with a feast of polictical hubris saw instead Clintons dick.Enough said.

What I would like to see this Independence Day - is for the Democrats/Republicans/Independents all to unite, and start contacting all of our members of Congress and start insisting that they be: BE PATRIOTS, and start to take back this government; this republic; and, our constitution. It is time to do the Barry Goldwater walk over to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue!!

That's one thing we can all agree on. It is time for all of us to get over "Clinton did it" - this administration and their cronies have used that excuse -- for six years, and we all go on and on about it. Hell, I even got that line in a response letter that I received from Lamar Alexander when I asked for him to vote, "No-Confidence" in Alberto Gonzales. (I faxed all 100 Senators the same letter - one night)-- It is time for all of us to press ALL elected officials, that the TIME HAS COME.

I would love to see Marcy and David Schuster on a tv show together -- it is so envigorating to see journalists who know when to cut the crap off from the pundits because they know the background and the FACTS....Did any of you hear/see the floundering comments of the WH press corp video -- where they couldn't even agree on what Scooter was convicted of......there is more than incompetence in this administration -- there is a press corp -- that is lazy -- and paid off -- which has allowed/watched the corruption of every department in this United States of America to continue to grow and fester - we are better than that...

We cannot tolerate it any longer -- ALL of us need to stand up, yes, even to Barack, who's comments about impeachment are insulting and very condescending .....about impeachment ...

Every American -- whether politically savvy or not "gets it" when there are two different legal systems -- deep down we all like to see the mythical little guy win one -- this is a big one -- the rule of law and our nation; really. Just read Paul Craig Roberts -- article, Beyond Recklessness-- about the war in Iraq -. Encourage Lugar and Voinivich -- ask other Midwesterners in Congress - that's the heartland -- keep hounding them about the war; the lies; the corruption and the destruction of their party and country. Some of these old birds - love their jobs more than you know.

Call, Fax, Write, elected officials twenty minutes a day; every day until they REALIZE, the TIME HAS COME. Let's all be PATRIOTS.

For all of you on this thread (even EW), let us be clear about one thing. Bill Clinton DID NOT commit perjury. He was wrong, he was disingenuous, he was duplicitous. He deserved to be scolded, reprimanded, censured, what have you. But he DID NOT commit perjury. First off, perjury requires, as a necessary element, that the statement be material to the proceeding at hand. There is not one argument in hell to support the thought that the statement Clinton made was material or critical to the Paula Jones suit, which was the case at hand. The conduct with Lewinsky happened many, many years after the alleged Jones incident and had no possible bearing on the truth or falsity of the Jones allegations. NONE. Secondly, as another necessary and critical element of perjury, you must establish a demonstrable and provable false statement, ie a lie under oath and on the record. But, if you read the deposition transcript taken, by Judicial Watch I think, Clinton did not lie. He made an incredibly slippery answer to a poorly phrased question, by a poor witness examiner and used a bullshit definition of having "sex" with Lewinsky. And the incredibly unskilled lawyer taking the deposition not only adopted this slippery definition, he never, ever, asked any pertinent defining or followup questions. But again, read the transcript carefully and I defy you to find an outright lie. You cannot and will not. Slippery, parsing, disingenuous, and a totally misleading answer, yes; a lie NO. And another thing, the deal cut was as much a capitulation, if not more so, by the Independent Counsel Ray than it was by Clinton. All he got out of Clinton was an agreement to temporarily suspend his right to actively practice law in the State of Arkansas. Bill Clinton was not going to be practicing law in the State of Arkansas for a couple of years, if ever again, anyway. Bill Clinton was not guilty of, nor did he admit to, diddly shit. You can be rightfully indignant and disgusted by Clinton's actions, and properly so. But to call it perjury and blather on about how Clinton admitted breaking the law exhibits nothing but an affirmative refusal to be informed of the facts and the law. And one last little tidbit for those who don't quite understand how silly it is to blather about Clinton's "perjury". Remember the requirement of "materiality" I told you about? The court in Arkansas found the Paula Jones suit to be so lacking in merit, so spurious, so groundless and baseless, that it was summarily dismissed by the court as a matter of law. Scooter Libby perjured himself, among his other crimes of obstruction of justice and false statements to a Federal agent in the course of intentionally exposing and outing a 20 year career covert CIA agent who was leading our governments most critical efforts on non-proliferation of WMD in the middle east. Bill Clinton has no analogy to this situation whatsoever, and any attempt to conflate the two in this regard, for any purpose other than showing how heinous Libby's conduct was, is a fool's errand.

bmaz, you are a lawyer, and your exellent comment shows it. But, you have seen the trees and missed the forest: Character, which includes honesty, not parsing of language, matters in a President. Without it, we have cynicism towards government and our leaders. And, it leads to a single party being in control, robbing us of our Constitution, undermining the very definition of democracy. Lies matter; truth matters.

I voted for Clinton twice, and liked him tremendously, but was deeply disillusioned that he was so reckless, a dangerous quality in a leader.

Margaret, your forest was tree farm planted to the tune of the wurlitzer. Bmaz got this exactly right. There is a world of difference between sleazy behavior and criminal behavior.

Margaret, it is not necessarily a common occurrence, but I saw, and do see, both forrest and trees here. If you will look in my comment, you will find that I said "rightfully so" or something similar as to indignation over Clinton's actions. I believe that. I love Bill Clinton and believe that he is not just one of the most gifted politicians of the last half century or so, but also one of the most gifted leaders. On some scale, I can even accept his dalliance with Lewinsky. But allowing himself to be caught and the hell it caused the country, not to mention his presidency, that is unforgiveable. For starters, without that, there would have been no Bush presidency to date. So, I am not arguing against some of your visceral feelings on Clinton at all. But I do have a huge problem with the trope about "perjury", and I do also feel that every bit as much of the blame for the fallout, if not much more of the blame, must be attributed to the wingnuts who politipuritanically shoved the nighmare down our throats. Contrary to your though that Lewinsky was the cause of "single party control, robbing us of our Constitution etc., The wingnuts were going to manufacture something, anything, at any cost on Clinton. They were obsessed. As I said above though, Clinton never should have put himself in the position of helping their efforts.

But going back as to "perjury", the wingnutosphere has been so effective on this subject that literally 90% of America seems to think it is true; and it most certainly is not. I find this particularly intellectually insulting now that we are talking about a real perjurer, Libby. And Margaret, it was not just you, there were many above that chirped in with the term "perjury" about Clinton. It is easy to do, and sometimes it is a useful device for contrasting, wich is what I think EW was doing because she most certainly knows the state of things very well; it is still, in the long run, wrong. The more we allow wingnut framings of issues to be bandied about, the more they come back to haunt us later. Because we were all so disappointed with Clinton, we have not fought this bogus framing hard enough before and now it is being jammed up our rears along with the complete bullshit stated equivilence of the Sandy Berger nonsense.

One comment above alludes to Cheney's real motive for outing Plame, which was to destroy the CIA's covert WMD program, to prevent it from competing with his Ministry of Truth. He wants to attack Iran in order to create hell on Earth (a "global Iraq") by "fulfilling Apocalyptic prophecy" up to the point where Christ returns and gives the planet a makeover. (Note that Jack van Impe, arbiter of "prophecy fulfillment," is a virtual consultant to the Bush administration, through Elliott Abrams.) Few people can imagine a motive for such evil, but it exists. He'd have a harder time of it if the CIA were to shoot down his lies about Iran having WMD, just as Joe Wilson did before the big Iraq attack.

bmaz, Thank you for the clarification about "perjury." But, that was how I remembered it as being described, it was the impression I received, because he lied to the public about his "affair" and because it all added up to an embarrassing, destructive result. The lying bothered me. He was smart enough to have told the ruth in a way that might have avoided all the hoopla.

I realize the difference between a sexual dalliance and treason, and I do not equate the two. I just wish we could promote democracy and the election of better members of the democratic party without simultaneously defending the indefensible.

My plea is simply, that we must demand better candidates, better behavior, and give men and women in public office some free personal time so that they don't snap and make stupid sexual choices.( All that left-brain activity without some Dionesian right-brain relief leads to obtuse behavior.) We also must expect our candidates to show some history of honorable behavior in public life: was Bush an honorable man before he landed in Washington? What was Libby really like? What was Cheney like? Did they have a pattern of truth-telling? We know some of the answers to that, don't we. And, we knew about Clinton's sexual addiction. I admired his intellect, immensely, and agree that Starr and the NYT were relentless, which turned me off, forever, to trusting the motives of NYT. But I don't forgive Clinton or Berger, for that matter. I sure as hell wouldn't steal documents from the library of Congress!

We haven't been vigilant, demanding, or vocal enough about the people or the process to have prevented these people from holding high office and consorting with the leadership of this country. To quote the Democratic Party meme: We can do so much better...........

Nice topic.I was reading over at TPM a piece on the recent SCOTUS ruling where a man who actually served in the service was asking for a reduction in his sentence for purjury.

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