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July 18, 2005

Comments

Cernig

Hi PM,

I agree that the big picture is as you say it is, and that it should be given a whole heap of attention. What I don't understand is why Rove is getting more attention this last 2 weeks than the whole "rush to war by deception" story got in the past two months.

I think it's fear, personally. Dems are afraid of losing in 2006 and 2008 if Rove stays and Repubs are afraid of losing if he goes. No one man is this important.

If the big picture is "not about Rove, Wilson or Plame" then why are so many spending so much time talking about them instead of the big picture?

Regards, C

Peter
What I don't understand is why Rove is getting more attention this last 2 weeks than the whole "rush to war by deception" story got in the past two months.

Our shallow media is to blame for that. Certainly activist Democrat types have paid plenty of attention to the "rush to war by deception" over far longer than just the last two months.

I think it's fear, personally. Dems are afraid of losing in 2006 and 2008 if Rove stays and Repubs are afraid of losing if he goes. No one man is this important.

I don't think that at all. Dems have been pointing out the Bush gang's lies for years. Now, thanks to the possibility that an extremely prominent member of the Bush team is on the wrong side of a prosecutor the media has latched onto one of them, at least for a short period. That's the only difference now. There's no fear. What can we be afraid of? We have nothing left to lose.

As for the national GOP, I don't think they're afraid either. Again, this is S.O.P. for them. Lying, deception, character assassination at extreme volume have worked for them in the past, and they expect it to do so again.

If there's fear on that side, it's on the part of the Bushies and on what the special counsel will do. But that's below the surface.

If the big picture is "not about Rove, Wilson or Plame" then why are so many spending so much time talking about them instead of the big picture?

Well, we've been talking about that stuff for years, and will continue to do so for years after this affair is past. Meanwhile, this is relatively new (at least the fact that the investigation is so far along is new).

Sometimes, it's the lesser actions that become symbolic of the greater crime. That was also true back during Watergate, with the break-in of the Dem HQ being the symbol of a huge amount of abuses of power by the Nixon administration.

Mike Thomas

Our shallow media is to blame for that.

I would just say that our media is a reflection of our society. They give us what we want. So it would be more accurate to say that our shallow society is to blame.
Certainly there are some media that are more shallow than others, but overall it rises to meet public expectations.

I agree that this scandal is symbolic of the larger crime - the lies that led us into a needless and costly war. It has legs because it is fairly simple for the average yokel to digest. A covert agent was exposed and high-level administration officials have lied about their involvement and now the president is waffling and flip-flopping on past promises. The Republican strategy is to complicate the matter by constantly repeating bogus claims (Plame wasn't a covert agent!) and throwing out red herrings (Wilson is a liar!). The Democratic strategy is to try and keep things simple - focus on the crime before people's eyes start to glaze over and they lose interest.

Cernig

Hi Mike,

I'm an "average yokel". Alwayts have been. I'm proud of my roots and of my working class cousins, uncles, aunts, friends etc.

Part of my problem, I suppose, is that I feel the Dems have ceased somewhere along the line to be the representatives of the "common yokel" and joined the Republicans in just trying to lead those yokels around by the nose.

Regards, C

Mike Thomas

I meant no offense with the yokel comment. I don't have any relatives outside of the working class either.
(And most of them tend to vote Republican anyway)
But I certainly do not buy the argument that the Democrats are the same as the Republicans. If George W. Bush did not make that clear enough, I'm not sure what other evidence you would need.

Cernig

But I certainly do not buy the argument that the Democrats are the same as the Republicans.

I didn't and would not attempt to make that argument. The Dems are still better by a long chalk than the Repugs.

Then again, the US politician I have most time for is Bernie Sanders, an avowed socialist. Where I come from, that's what the "poor yokels" vote, not conservative. Where I come from, you don't have to be a multi-millionaire to reach high office and represent the people, either.

Regards, C

Peter
I would just say that our media is a reflection of our society. They give us what we want. So it would be more accurate to say that our shallow society is to blame.

That's a fair point.

Though upon reflection, I think the real reason people don't want to pay attention to the "rush to war by deception" story is not shallowness, but that it is so antithetical to what they want to believe our country and our leadership would and should do.

There are so many people who have loved ones either directly or indirectly involved in the Iraq effort. I suspect they want to believe the best, for their own mental health if nothing else.

The press's lack of aggressiveness on this issue probably reflects this attitude more than anything.

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