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The Asylum

Welcome to the Asylum. This is a site devoted to politics and current events in America, and around the globe. The THREE lunatics posting here are unabashed conservatives that go after the liberal lies and deceit prevalent in the debate of the day. We'd like to add that the views expressed here do not reflect the views of other inmates, nor were any inmates harmed in the creation of this site.

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Monday, April 24, 2006

LeakGate: Double Standards And Clintonites In The Mix

First let me begin by stating that after yesterday's Open Topic posts, we put our heads together last night, and started to really think about this, which is where the Clinton administration angle comes in.

And to the Left out there wanting to condemn us for that, or wnat to point to another person on the right, jump up and down and shriek: "They can't leave the Clintons alone!" please, shut up. This is not about the Clintons, yet. This, right now, revolves around people who worked with them. The Clinton administration left more than a stain on the presidency. It left one on the general psyche of the nation when we have people like Mary McCarthy running around flapping her gums, and Sandy
Berger stealing documents out of the National Archies.

The eight years of the Clintons in the White House was filled with scandal after scandal, where, more often than not, the excuse from that White House was "but everybody does it." And yes, for the record, President Clinton would have joined his friends in jumping off that cliff or bridge; the same one inquired about through your mothers. And I always have disliked that excuse.

"Everybody does it" is not an excuse. It is not even a viable one at that. Not "everybody" does the same thing. But that mentality pushed the lack of moral values during the Clinton years, and it carried over to a number of people. Now there is Mary McCarthy, but before her was Sandy Berger. Before him was Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame, who have been lying from the start. And let us not forget Jamie Gorelick, who should have been testifying before the 9/11 Commission rather than sitting on it with one of the most bone-headed ideas--the intelligence wall between military and law enforcement organizations. And, of course we cannot forget Richard Clarke, whose bumbling, Clouseau-like antics has made Democrats in Congress look graceful.

These people have made life hell for the president. Clarke accused the president of being asleep at the switch. Gorelick's wall had to be ripped down by Congress's passing of the Patriot Act (FISA judges were told to know it off when they tried to reinstate that wall; a violation of the Patriot Act itself). President Carter's National Security Advisor and former General Anthony Zinni have joined the cacophony of voices criticizing the president for his actions in Iraq. Instead of maintaining the protocol regarding past presidents, these people have taken the opportunity to either hurt this administration, or be loudly outspoken critics of it. And while there is not problem with speaking out against the administration, it should be done within the modicum of decorum.

President Carter and President Clinton do not seem to care that former presidents do not openly and publicly criticize the current president. They have seemingly made that a second career for themselves, especially Jimmy Carter. A note to Mr. Carter when it comes to glass houses: Do not throw a stone at our house; yours is breakable too. And he has far too many windows in his home by comparison.

As for the double standards, Hugh Hewitt points out a WaPo piece where the Democrats are starting the calls that the White House has double standards regarding leakers:

Key Democratic legislators yesterday joined Republicans in saying they do not condone the alleged leaking of classified information that led to last week's firing of a veteran CIA officer. But they questioned whether a double standard exists that lets the White House give reporters secretly declassified information for political purposes.

"I don't know this woman, and I do not condone leaks of classified information," said Rep. Jane Harman (Calif.), ranking Democrat on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, referring to the firing of Mary McCarthy.

Harman added that "while leaks are wrong, I think it is totally wrong for our president in secret to selectively declassify certain information and empower people in his White House to leak it to favored reporters so that they can discredit political enemies," she said on Fox News Sunday.

Harman was referring to White House staff members disclosing the classified identity of CIA case officer Valerie Plame in 2003.

Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) echoed Harman, saying, "A CIA agent has an obligation to uphold the law, and clearly leaking is against the law. And nobody should leak." But he added: "If you're leaking to tell the truth, Americans are going to look at that, at least mitigate or think about what are the consequences that you . . . put on that person."

McCarthy, while working for CIA Inspector General John L. Helgerson, is alleged to have "knowingly and willfully shared classified intelligence, including operational information" to journalists including The Washington Post's Dana Priest. Last week, Priest was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for beat reporting that included the revelation of secret, CIA-run prisons for suspected terrorists in Eastern Europe and elsewhere.

Kerry, on ABC's "This Week," said, "Classification in Washington is a tool that is used to hide the truth from the American people." He added, "I'm glad she told the truth," but if McCarthy did it, she will have to face the consequences of breaking the law.

Ms. Harman and the WaPo seem to forget that Valerie Plame, while an employee for the CIA, was not covert. Her NOC status had long since run out. There is no amount of mental gymnastics that can be performed that can get around this glaring fact. The WaPo, while generously patting itself on the back, and Dana Priest on the back, too, for the report about the secret CIA prisons, fails to note that the report released by the EU last Friday seems to show that Dana Priest did not, in fact, uncover anything. The story, it appears, was a ruse to ferret out a leaker. The prisons do not exist. Last but not least, John Kerry does not seem to understand the gravity of the situation. If he did--if he had a thought that could cross that pea-brain of his--he would never be praising her for telling "the truth." In fact, it was not the truth. It was a lie, and McCarthy fell for it. Priest fell for it, and apparently the Democrats are doing that, too.

What is most troubling to me is the double standard they are embracing. They claim it is wrong for the administration to "declassify" material; such declassification, they claim, is done to score poilitical points. Is it, or is it a put-up-or-shut-up moment when the president releases information showing that he was right and his detractors were wrong? The president does have the power and authorization to declassify whatever he chooses to, at any time, and with any information. He did it during the Plame leak investigation. He has done so over Iraq, including the demand to release all the Saddam documents we have captured thus far in Iraq. He can do this.

Employees at the CIA cannot. Congressmen and congresswomen cannot do this. No one but the president and vice president have the exclusive power to declassify material. And the MSM can look at people like McCarthy as whistelblowers if they wish, but what if the whistle blown does not exist? How much of a hero is she then? It is the media that has egg all over their face, not the administration. Rather than thoroughly checking her story, Dana Priest rushed it to press--the only thing on her mind being an exclusive. So the WaPo runs with it. And the same week the Pulitzer guys hand out their awards, the EU kills hers in one fell swoop.

They found no prisons. They found no evidence that any such prisons even existed in Europe. As far as they are concerned, it is now a non-issue. The story, unless Dana Priest can provide details with incredible specificity, is a lie; it is, quite literally, the TANG memos all over again. The difference is that, in my opinion, Dan Rather knew the memos were phony from the start whereas Dana Priest either did not check the facts, or did not care. Either way you cut that, Ms. Priest screwed up. Her Pulitzer should go, and so should her job. You do not embarress your meal ticket that way, and there are many synonyms for "dupe" that will likely be used by reporters from other papers in regard to the WaPo and their "stellar" staff of "crack" reporters.

Meanwhile, bloggers get nothing in terms of acknowledgement from the MSM for doing much of their leg work already on the McCarthy story. As a matter of fact, I saw little coverage on this topin over the weekend. And anytime it did come up, someone on the Left would bring up the primary talking point for their side of the argument. The White House leaks all the time. But what is the difference between a "leak" and a release of information by the administration? I believe it was ABC News who, this past weekend, proclaimed that one man's leaker is another's whistleblower.

This is an idiotic comparison, much like the one that John Kerry has made in the past regarding the similarities between "freedom fighters" and "patriots," and terrorists. (Just a clue bus moment Senator Kerry: freedom fighters and patriots do not go out of their way to blow up civilians. As far as they are concerned, such people are non-combatants. Terrorists make no distinction; a target is a target regardless of age, sex, or whether or not they are even armed.) The same can be said of the mithnomer being solicited by ABC News. McCarthy is not having an "Insider" moment here. She knew how classified the information was that she was in possession of, and still decided to reveal that to a member of the MSM. The goal was not to inform the public, but rather to give the administration a black-eye.

And that is all this whole thing is about. The WaPo can call Dana Priest and Mary McCarthy heroes if they wish. Even John Kerry can (if he can find his medals or ribbons, or whatever, maybe he can go pin one on both of them; it might mean more to them than it did for him) laud praise on them. But it does not change the fact for Mary McCarthy, and it sure as hell does not help the MSM.

We have proven that we still have problems within the highest reaches of the government that could care less about the administration, and would leak vital secrets to the press. We have a willing and able press ready to jump on any story, regardless of the classified nature of that information. (And yes, the press is stating that people like Dana Priest, James Risen, and Eric Lichtblau should not be prosecuted for their role in releasing classified material; we agree on Priest, as she did not release anything but a phony story, but the others should be rung up.) The press does not care about a story unless it is something that can hurt a member of the administration.

Remember, the day that McCarthy was fired, the press immediately turned on Dr. Condoleeza Rice, claiming she did the same thing. No she did not. What she stated was not a secret. What Mary McCarthy revealed--or so she was led to believe--was secret. She let it out in the open, and the press ran to the top of the hills proclaiming it for all to see without regard to any operatives that could have been put in jeopardy, had the story been true. For the press, it is all right to protect "valued" agents like Valerie Plame--a no-talent, low-level nobody at the CIA witha lying husband with a political ax to grind--but it is not okay to protect potential officers undercover and in the field with the release of the program they are working on.

Uh-huh. I need no lectures from the double standard crowd on their own double standards. The public is aware, and the MSM is not fooling anyone.

The Bunny ;)


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