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Thursday, October 13, 2005

More Plame commentary - a toxic political culture 

I didn't know this -- Digby points out that Chris Matthews testified himself in the Plame case - no wonder he could summarize it so well. Dibgy points out how serious is the disconnect between the media/Washington beltway/politicians/hacks and the public on this case:
The subjects of this investigation are the most powerful people on this planet. The case involves not just politics as usual but a concerted effort to conceal information about the rationale leading up to this misbegotten war. When the administration was confronted by critics, they could have laid out the reasons why Wilson was incorrect. Instead, they chose to forcefully discredit him with a ridiculous nepotism charge and in the course of that, whether purposefully of out of carelessness, they revealed a CIA agent's cover.
This was not just politics, it was a cover up using strong arm tactics. We may not have known definitively in the summer of 2003 that after all the administration's so-called proof that there were no WMD in Iraq, but we sure as hell do now. Whether they technically committed a crime under the Victoria Toensing statute, or whether they perjured themselves or obstructed justice before the grand jury to cover their political crimes, it should be prosecuted. Richard Cohen and Andrea Mitchell may think this is trivial, but I doubt that most people in this country will find it so. They understand the difference between consensual blowjobs, character assassination and national security even if the beltway doesn't.
This is at its essence about a toxic political culture. The press has abdicated its reponsibility to hold the powerful accountable. A highly centralized Republican political machine observes no limits. The opposition party is purposefully rendered impotent and irrelevant. The checks and balances are no longer in place.
The only institution that has the ability to cut through the spin, the lies, the strong-arm tactics is the justice system. Politics have become criminalized to be sure --- by the political criminals and their friendly helpmates in the press. The law is all we've got left. God help us.
Well, Digby, I don't quite agree with you. We also have the blogs. Today's versions of Walter Cronkite and Edward R. Murrow are writing blogs somewhere in California -- AKA Daily Kos and Hullabaloo.

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