The Facts Machine

"And I come back to you now, at the turn of the tide"

Thursday, June 23, 2005


--"Pay no attention to those Iraq polls behind the curtain" . . . With opposition to the Iraq war nearing 60 percent, perhaps Rove's goal is to stir the pot. Every word from the administration is surely deliberate, so Rove's comments had an aim, ane one greater than just red meat for New York conservatives. His target audience was the very liberals he was branding as traitors. He wanted to stir the pot, albeit violently. He thinks that if the Democrats and others come out strongly against his comments, then the story can be boiled down to "partisanship", what they're always accusing Democrats of, and Rove can have some of the blamed deflected from him, while at the same time taking the spotlight off the increasingly unpopular war in Iraq. The timing of these comments was no accident.

--"Pay no attention to those British memos behind the curtain" . . . Same as above.

--The Valerie Plame Dark Horse . . . Perhaps this is a ploy for Karl Rove to make a dramatic exit soon, because he knows Patrick Fitzgerald is going to serve his ass with an indictment over the leaking of the name of an undercover CIA agent to Bob Novak in 2003. Not likely, but just throwing that out there.

--The 9/11 reflex . . . When in doubt -- when the polls are down, when the war's a mess, when Congressional approval is bottoming out, when your asshole UN ambassador nominee can't get confirmed, when private accounts seem dead in the water -- say "9/11"!

and of course,

--He's an all-around big dink.

And remember, Bush keeps reminding us that Iraq "is a central front in the war on terror." 59 percent of Americans disapprove of how Bush is handling Iraq according to the most recent Gallup poll. I'll let you fill in part 3 of this little fit of syllogism.

UPDATE: The administration and its allies are doing their part to boost the first of the above theories. Rummy:
At a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing Thursday, Clinton urged Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld to repudiate the "insulting comment."

Rumsfeld replied that it "is unfortunate when things become so polarized or so politicized."
Republican Party Chairman Ken Mehlman, speaking in Puerto Rico, said there was no need to apologize because "what Karl Rove said is true."
White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card, asked about the Rove dispute on CNN, noted, "We have seen pretty hot rhetoric from both sides of the aisle lately."
NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg gets in on the act, with a very timid condemnation of "partisanship", music the the administration's ears:
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a Republican running for re-election in an overwhelmingly Democratic city, issued a statement urging both sides to keep politics out of the war on terrorism. "We owe it to those we lost to keep partisan politics out of the discussion and keep alive the united spirit that came out of 9/11," he said.
They're doing a dance for us, hoping that if they can turn this into a partisan-politics issue then the Dems will soon give up on going after Rove, while at the same time they are keeping the stream of bodybags in Iraq off people's minds. This could be a tipping point, though.


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