The Lonely Goatherd Blog And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats - Matthew 25:32
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October 29, 2005
Lewis "Scooter" Libby Is An Idiot And Patrick Fitzgerald Makes Mountains of Anthills Lewis "Scooter" Libby was indicted today by a federal grand jury for perjury and obstruction of justice. After watching prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald explaining this for an hour, it looked like dumb, petty foolishness from one subordinate. If this is what comes out of all this, it's a big lot of nothing for a payoff.
People want to make Watergate out of this, but it's SO not. The fact that it's not the president screwing up, but the vice president's aide makes it a much smaller scope.
But more important, Watergate involved lying to cover up the truth. The administration was doing bad things, and didn't want people to find out. This involved not wanting to admit to having told the truth. In this case, Libby is in trouble based on covering up from admitting that he was saying true things that he supposedly wasn't allowed to say, ie that Valerie Plame works for the CIA.
There was no crime underneath, and Fitzgerald sure seemed extremely disengenuous in trying to make it sound as if there was- while specifically denying it when asked point blank. No, he explained, Libby has NOT been charged with violating the covert identities statute, which was supposed to be the real charge.
This is not because they don't know or can't ascertain that Libby was giving out Plame's name. That they DO seem to have pretty well established. Nor was it because Libby didn't know her status. He damn well did.
The reason no one is being charged with violating that statute is because it simply does not goddam apply here. She was NOT a covert operative. She was NOT covered by that statute. This statute is not some bedrock of national security law in the first place, but something conjured up a dozen years ago, which liberals were rightly highly skeptical of.
Grasping at straws, Fitzgerald tried in his public comments today to argue that just that she worked at the CIA at all was officially "classified" information, but that's really pushing it. EVERYTHING in Washington is classified. Plus, no one has been charged with even this half-assed crime.
Joe Wilson lies a lot, by every indication. Again and again, his whole story has shown up to be bogus.
Showing up the truth on this liar on these important issues incidentally involved explaining that his wife works at a CIA desk in Washington. This was utterly relevant to the story. It's not like they were outing and endangering a spy. She simply wasn't one.
Did I mention that her husband wrote a big signed editorial in the New York frickin' Times making false statements about his trip- before this "leak"? He writes a big lying editorial in the NYT about his CIA work, then he's mad over the exposure of his wife's employment status?
Still, Libby ends up being the goat- and he ultimately has only himself to blame. Insert standard boilerplate about presumption of innocence. However, it appears that for whatever reasons, he just lied to the grand jury repeatedly. It sounds like Fitzgerald has a half dozen or more people contradicting his convenient stories.
My considered analysis is that Scotter Libby is an IDIOT. Did he not watch the Clinton business a few years ago? Plus, he apparently can't get his story straight. I'm to understand that he gave Fitzgerald notes, and then gave testimony directly contradicting the notes HE gave the prosecutor.
Sounds like he lied not to cover up a non-existent crime, but to avoid political embarassment for the administration. But DUH, lying to a grand jury resulting in an indictment is far more politically embarassing than just saying what you did in the first place.
It's ridiculous that it has come to this. Fitzgerald has spent untold dollars and two years, plus countless FBI hours and just to accuse someone of lying to him. This is far less even than the charges against Clinton. Libby is accused of lying, but not of witness tampering- which was the worst part. Libby is not accused of any conspiracy, and there are no "unindicted co-conspirators."
The old grand jury is gone, and this is looking like their big haul. Whoopee! The other option is to call a whole new grand jury, and take a crack at some more people.
Over what? One conniving CIA bureaucrat became a household name because she set up her lying husband on a little trip to sabotage the White House. She had every bit of that coming to her. She put herself in the position of helping to spread falsehoods in the path of the administration, and we should be punishing someone for pointing it out?
Joe Wilson told a bunch of lies. His wife helped him do it. Prosecutor Fitzgerald is making mountains out of not even molehills, but mere anthills. He's not being very honest to make a big pretend national security issue out of it in his talk that isn't in fact related to reality or any actual charges he's bringing.
Libby seems to come out looking about the best of them- and he's a fool. If he's told repeated lies to a grand jury- and it appears that Fitzgerald's got at least half a dozen witnesses to establish this- then Libby has given them the rope.
Looks like there's going to be a hanging. Yee-haw!