March 15, 2007

Get Gonzo Gone, and the right lies again.

AG Alberto Gonzalez should have been purged long ago, what with his memos trying to legally OK torture to all the other unconstitutional and reckless matters he's tried to justify with dubious legal double-talk in order to hand Bush nearly unlimited power.

The guy was a hack that glommed onto Bush decades ago and is now in a position he's not qualified for and never was, and is clearly more loyal to Bush and the administration than to the law he is to uphold and defend and the interests of the American people he's supposed to serve.

And, though it almost goes without saying with top Bush officials, he's a liar. He's been all over the map with the revelations about his firing of U.S. attorneys for not being sufficiently obedient to Bush's political wishes. The biggest whopper is when he says there was nothing political about the firings. Such a big lie from such a little man.

Now even Republicans such as Sununu are calling for him to resign amidst more and more evidence being revealed that they not only wanted U.S. attorney's fired for political reasons, but that Harriet Myers, the woman Bush tried to appoint to the damn Supreme Court, originally wanted to try to fire ALL of the U.S. attorneys wholesale and replace them all, presumably with those who were reliably obedient to the Republican party and Bush.

It's sickening. And if it wasn't nearly drowned out by all the other scandals falling like leaves since Democrats in Washington were finally allowed to do the job congress is there to do, it would be a HUGE scandal. As usual in these situations, it's nearly impossible to avoid noting what would have happened if Clinton had actually tried to pull something like this.

And despite the immediate effort by the right wing to somehow blame this on Clinton (he's still president, right? Everything that's happened in the last 6 years, the Republicans have blamed him for, so he MUST still be president, right?), and the right wing noise machine busy blaring their favorite refrain, "Clinton did it too!", you might actually believe that bit of deception and dishonesty.

But you know better than to take ANYTHING that comes out of Rove & Company's mouths at face value by now. If their lips are moving, it's a sure sign their lying.

And this is no different.

When they yelp that Clinton fired U.S. Attorneys, it was nothing remotely like what this crew has done. It's standard procedure to ask for resignations from political appointees when a new administration comes to the White House. Then the president gets to decide who stays and who doesn't. This is what Clinton did.

Clinton never attempted to wholesale fire every U.S. attorney at the beginning of his second term, as Meyers wanted to do, and neither did he selectively try to fire 8 in the middle of a second term for purely political reasons as Gonzalez actually has.

And keep in mind, the U.S. attorney's that Gonzalez fired were appointed by Bush himself.

The right wing is so busy trying to get this dishonest spin into the press than one news organization felt it necessary to print the truth. McClatchy newspapers Washington bureau reveals that the current situation is nothing like the one the right wing is howling about (as if that justifies what was done to begin with).

A piece in the NY Times details e-mail evidence that implicates the White House in directing Gonzalez, who is supposed to be utterly independent from such political matters, to purge these U.S. attorney's who, "chafed against administration initiatives.", in other words, weren't sufficiently abusing their positions for purely political prosecutions.

And on the heels of these damning revelations, comes results of a study which shows that during the Bush era 2001 through 2006, nearly 80% of all political prosecutions involved Democrats, compared to 18% Republicans. If the prosecutions were done completely even-handedly, the numbers would be closer to 50/50.
As is indicated by Table 1, across the nation from 2001 through 2006 the Bush Justice Department investigated Democratic office holders and candidates at a rate more than four times greater (nearly 80% to 18%) than they investigated Republican office holders and seekers. This was so even though, throughout the nation, Democrat
elected officials outnumber Republican elected officials at the rate of only 50% to 41%. Nine percent of elected officials are Independent/Other.

We believe that this tremendous disparity is politically motivated and it occurs because the local (non-state-wide and non-Congressional) investigations occur under the radar of a diligent national press. Each instance is treated by a local beat reporter as an isolated case that is only of local interest. The real Pulitizer Prize-winning story is the extent of the politicization of Justice Department investigations and/or indictments of local elected and office-seeking Democrats vis-a-vis their Republican counterparts across the nation.

Clearly the federal prosecutors office already WAS politicized to a huge degree. But this wasn't enough for Bush and Rove, who decided to get rid of the few who still appeared independent.

Take a look at the list of politicians prosecuted federally during this time and why. It doesn't do much to support the idea of honest politicians.

Hearings are sure to follow, with Sen. Pat Leahy promising to subpoena Rove himself.

FINALLY... some long overdue investigation and oversight. Things are looking brighter all the time with the promise that more of the inept, incompetent, corrupt, and criminal will be weeded out of the executive branch. The Republicans sure wouldn't do it, and Bush gives them medals of freedom. It's lucky for the country that someone finally is cleaning house.


At 3/16/2007 2:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can you be concise...why is it so wrong when the Bush Administration fires 8-attorneys (when the process was over a period of almost 2-years) - people do get fired, no?

How does this rise to such a scandalous affair, when Clinton did the same thing - to EVERY attorney in the system (and he happened to gain by those new appointees overlooking the investigations that were ongoing by those he fired).

Liberals - you guys are such fools...

At 3/16/2007 3:43 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

OH, so "liberals" like Republican Sen. Sununu are fools too?

I think you're the fool.

First of all, Clinton asked for resignations from all the existing U.S. attorneys after 8 years of Republican reign. That was the same thing Bush I did as well.

It's NOT controversial to ask for pro forma resignations from political appointees when the White House changes parties. DUH.

Then the White House decides which to keep and which to let go. Clinton replaced them all except one... Michael Chertoff, current head of Homeland Security, who was working a sensitive case at the time.

That's expected. Getting rid of political appointees from the opposing party AT THE BEGINNING of a term.

It also was done before the slimy provision was slipped into the Patriot act which now allows Bush to replace such federal proscutors without any congressional oversight or confirmation.

What Gonzalez did was obviously much different, as the article I linked to explains. (do you even read?)

Gonzalez and his crew fired federal prosecutors in the middle of a second term, and for what has been revealed to be purely political reasons.

THAT is what is different here.

And as if that weren't enough, the White House and figures from the Justice Dept. have clearly LIED to congress about this matter as well, saying the White House had nothing to do with it, when it's been proven it clearly did, and other lies.

It's a power grab that's recognized as clearly out of bounds by members of both parties.

Don't be left out in the cold on this one. You're on the wrong side of history.

At 3/17/2007 9:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So Hillary can fire the travel office, lie about it and there is no issue, but when a Republican Administration fires anyone, its a federal case?

At 3/17/2007 6:13 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 9:09 (hey, that makes me "The one after 9:09)

I think that's why your party is on the way out. You can't tell the difference between some minor travel office staff and U.S. Attorneys and the Justice Dept.

One of these things is not like the other.

Keep clinging to the sinking ship though. That's always a good strategy.


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