Skip to comments.Flowers: A Scandal Goes Down in Plames
Posted on 09/16/2006 7:30:17 PM PDT by cgk
SCANDALS, like wool sweaters, tend to shrink when mishandled. An item that looked so sharp at first glance can lose its zing when thrown into the wrong spin cycle. And it's only when we pull it out, misshapen and ruined, that we realize last season's trendy purchase is this year's damaged goods.
Take Plamegate, where the beautiful blond wife of an ambitious diplomat was unmasked as a CIA operative. Never mind the fact that Valerie Plame, Mrs. Ambassador Joe Wilson, wasn't exactly the spy who came in from the cold since this Mata Hari had been toiling at a desk job in Langley, Va., for years. And where she worked was the worst-kept secret since Rosie O'Donnell's sexual orientation.
(And it always seemed that our heroine recovered quite well from the outing. She and her husband didn't exactly run from the high-profile photo-ops, not to mention excruciatingly large book deals. "Invasion of privacy" is a relative term.)
So even though it was always quite unlikely that any laws were broken or any real spy hung out to dry, the prospects for political advantage were too high for liberal critics of the president to pass up.
The ones who liked to repeat the glazed-eye mantra of "Bush lied, people died" had a field day portraying George Bush and his neo-con associates as part of a Machiavellian conspiracy to punish Joe Wilson for publicly exposing the "lies" that led to the Iraq invasion.
Of course, Wilson's claims have by now been roundly discredited. The Washington Post went so far in an editorial as to call him a liar, saying he "diverted responsibility from himself and his false charges by claiming that President Bush's closest aides had engaged in an illegal conspiracy. It's unfortunate that so many people took him seriously."
So many liberals, that is.
Pity they forgot to check their facts before launching the crusade. Back when the story first broke, it was commonly believed that Karl Rove was the leak in the ship of state, the man who revealed Plame's identity to Robert Novak, who then blew her alleged cover in a column that tried to explain how a liberal Clintonite like Wilson got the job from the CIA to check out reports that Saddam was looking to buy uranium in Niger.
Since Rove is so universally despised by Bush critics, the rumor that he was the initial leaker fell like manna directly onto the plates of Bush detractors.
Here at last was the opportunity to (yet again) attack Bush as an idiot pawn, vilify his advisers as warmongers willing to victimize a suburban soccer mom, galvanize the feminist vote against the administration (a career girl was being slimed) and reinforce the belief that the war in Iraq was based on deception.
There was definitely joy in Mudville and at the Democratic National Committee.
Problem is, they got it wrong. In the recently published "Hubris: The Inside Story of Spin, Scandal and the Selling of the Iraq War," authors Michael Isikoff and David Corn revealed that Novak's source was actually Richard Armitage, a State Department official who worked closely with Colin Powell.
And worst of all for Bush haters, Armitage was actually a vocal critic of the Iraq war.
Uh-oh, time out. This was not supposed to be in the liberal playbook. Suddenly, the alleged web of lies and deceit spun by Rove and Cheney and other administration operatives had a lot of holes.
No longer was Plamegate the creation of vindictive Republicans with an axe to grind who wanted to draw blood from a partisan critic like Wilson. The source of the leak was none other than a well-liked war opponent and D.C. insider.
In the interest of fairness and accuracy, you'd expect that news to hit the cover of every mainstream paper and magazine that profited for months from assassinating the character of Karl Rove and Dick Cheney.
Maybe Katie Couric would demonstrate what a treasure she really is and read the entire Washington Post editorial on-air.
Maybe Anderson Cooper would do a Katrina redux and decry the hurricane of hyperbole surrounding the case.
Maybe Oprah would reduce Arianna Huffington to tears, and Dr. Phil would analyze the New York Times editorial board.
Maybe someone could apologize to Judy Miller. Or Karl Rove. Or Dick Cheney. Or Scooter Libby. Maybe someone could teach prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald a lesson in professional ethics.
For the sensitive folks who were so worried that an innocuous ABC miniseries on 9/11 would defame President Clinton, setting the record straight should be important, right?
Apparently not. Like the shrunken sweater that no longer fits, Plamegate has lost its appeal. That's what happens when the truth gets caught in the wrong spin cycle.
Haha! I was going to mention that as soon as I posted the picture. On a side note, I predict the get divorced (or split up) before the 2008 election.
Don't faint..this was actually published in the Daily News.
I had that same thought a couple of years ago when Plame was keeping a fairly low profile. I figured she would see what an opportunistic and simple maroon her husband was and give him the heave-ho for dragging her into a cheap political scheme.
I now believe that she was fully involved (along with other CIA rogues) in the State Department's election-fixing scheme from the beginning. That is, she is at least as big a scumbag as her husband. This recent lawsuit seals the deal. Her actions can no longer be dismissed as naivete. Plame is a scumbag, and flat stupid.
Who would cut them off?
This is one of the best articles I've read so far on this. Thanks for posting.
LIke the rest these are extremely stupid people. I guess they don't realize they are being used too and will ultimately take the fall all by themselves.
They know exactly what they are doing... they just counted on the truth never being revealed.
It's delightful imagining Chris Matthews' disappointment. Even better, his despair when President Bush pardons Scooter Livvy.
Dare any Democrat complain considering how silent they were about Clinton's pardons?
She reminds me of Denise Rich. Must be the hair.
"This should become the text book for a journalistic ethics course. The media acted as an arm of the DNC here...some heads should roll."
This whole thing sickens me. Now that the truth is out, how many liberals are apologizing? none. Is Mrs. Plame dropping her civil suit? Of course not! Shes simply adding Mr. Armitage to the indictment. And best of all, who knew about it all along, but kept silent? Colin "Benedict Arnold" Powell, who now wants to remove any and all interrogation tools against terrorists from our arsenal. Am I the only one who thinks this is getting better (or WORSE), quite frankly, by the minute?!?
I expect to see the photoshoppers go to work on that wilson/plame pic.
Patrick Fitzgerald is the REAL villain here: he new almost from the very first - even BEFORE he was made special prosecutor - that no crime had been committted, that Valerie Plame had not been a "covert agent" in many years - if ever - and yet he persisted, flinging subpeonas about, putting Miz Miller in the slammer, indicting Scooter Libby.
Someone should investigate Fitzgerald.
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