The Talking Dog

June 16, 2007, White House Memo

This supposed "news analysis" from the Grey Lady, which bears a super-script heading "White House Memo"... presumably to indicate that it is on the subject of the White House, instead appears to be following the recent history of the Grey Lady's tendency to take dictation from the White House...

The apparent subject of the piece is the purported "dilemma" faced by the Congressional majority seeking to follow up on the U.S. Attorney firing scandal. There is no "dilemma"; the U.S. Attorney scandal, as Greg Palast tells us, is about nothing short of the Republican Party subverting the American electoral process in 2008 (as many believe it did in 2000 and 2004 with numerous voter suppression methods), this time, besides "caging voter rolls" and its other tried and true ethnic-minority voter suppression methods, with bogus prosecutions of Democrats and failure to prosecute Republicans... in short, the US Attorney scandal is Watergate, only on steroids.

Instead of any "analysis", the Grey Lady (which to this day has never owned up to its prior White House stenographic recordings, some of which are, IMHO, war crimes; see Miller, Judith) instead gives us still more White House talking points. These include the nonsense canard that there will be some sort of "price" if Congress does its Constitutionally mandated job, and oversees the Executive branch, particularly at a time when the Executive is running amock. We get such gems as:

“There’s a big problem for both the White House and Congress on these subpoenas, and that is that everybody looks bad,” said Ari Fleischer, Mr. Bush’s first press secretary. “The White House doesn’t want to get into a visible public executive privilege court fight because it makes it look like they’re hiding something. Congress shouldn’t go down this subpoena line because they’re only cooking their own goose. It’s great for the base, but lousy for the country.”

Ari Fleischer? That's an objective source? We're not even at the "hey, we got quotes from both sides so we must be objective and fair" stage... just... Ari Fleischer... as if his partisan opinion were even relevant... let alone news. But it gets better...

Some allies of the White House say an executive privilege battle is the next logical step.

“I think they have excellent prospects of winning in court,” said David Rivkin, who served in the White House counsel’s office under the first President Bush. Mr. Rivkin said he saw no political downside to a fight: “This has become very sharply edged, very partisan. People who do not like the administration will say he is stonewalling no matter what.”

One possible way out of the impasse would be for the White House to agree to interviews with transcripts, in exchange for Democrats’ withdrawing the subpoenas.

Now, I'm not so much pissed that Mr. Rivkin would talk to "even the liberal New York Times" and not to me (when I asked him for an interview re: his role in American detention policy, I received no response... it's his right not to talk to whomever he pleases, of course). Indeed, the Times even discloses that he is a "White House ally"... No, I'm pissed that the Times purports to render "friendly advice" to Democrats in Congress (as if they needed it) of... wait for it... "cave now, opposing or confronting the President on anything will only embarrass you." Thanks, guys.

I guess, the short answer is, for "fair and balanced"... try Fox News. For "White House Memos"... apparently unredacted and untouched by human hands... try the New York Times.


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