The real meat taste every dog loves

Well, not necessarily every talking dog will love the latest strategy coming from GOP Central: malign that picayune, hypertechnical prosecutor, belittle the nature of the crimes as hyper-technical inside-the-beltway stuff and continue to behave as if the population writ-large will let the usual bullshit machine spin treason as the most arcane of technicalities, as laid out by the somewhat complicit Grey Lady.
Well, well. Let’s follow along with the Grey Lady’s own complicitity in serving the propaganda goals of the Administration in lying about WMD’s in the first place, we see the publicly played out little internal dance between managing editor Bill Keller and Judy Miller herself. (Indeed, the second most offensive thing Joe Wilson did– the first being his appearance in the Tim Russert Softball Tournament– was to publish an op-ed in the very same New York Times.)
It’s all fascinatingly… unprofessional. The whole thing. I knew as of August of 2002 that there were no freaking WMDs in Iraq… I did… one completely out of the loop schnook who almost never leaves New York. And I knew that whether or not Saddam Hussein actually had really nasty super-weapons, the Bush Adminsitration had decided– to a certainty– that he didn’t, or else it would never have allowed the hemming and hawing to go on so long while it played to maximize its outcome in the ’02 midterms… couldn’t have afforded to play that game if they believed Saddam actually had the really bad shit….
And I wasn’t alone. Millions knew it. If nothing else, they knew to assume that if it came out of George W. Bush’s mouth or those associated with him, it was to be assumed false from the get-go, either intentionally so or simply because his team was and remains the gang that can’t shoot straight. And in this case, it turns out that thinking like that… was good enough.
Ah, but there was a tipping point in the national debate that finally convinced the Bushmen they had escape velocity to do what they intended… it may have been that awful vote that the feckless Tom Daschle allowed to happen (and voted for, along with most Democrats.) It may have been something else. And while some in the blogo-hobby-sphere would like to believe they had any influence (they did not… and still don’t…), the “even-the-liberal”-New York Times had tremendously outsized influence. And instead of professional journalism from the Times, we got party-girl Judy Miller re-printing the Administration’s press releases and the results of Ahmad Chalabi’s rotisserie Stratego league, while neither she nor her paper bothered to perform even the most rudimentary efforts at corroboration. Too important to maintain the steady access to the propaganda mill, apparently.
The same New York Times who deliberately underreported the size of a protest I was at in February 2003, at under 100,000, and depicting an aerial shot of the crowd so enumerated based on its congregation on one of the city’s avenues, conveniently not reporting that there were four times as many people present, or over 400,000 protestors… perhaps 5% of the population of the city in which Ground Zero resides, spending hours outside to protest the then coming war, on what was one of then the coldest days in years.
So while it’s semi-enlightening to see The Times reporting on GOP methods to mitigate and ridicule the criminal charges arising from the self-serving treason of deliberately jeopardizing the lives of American covert operatives to intimidate possible truth-telling that might embarass the Administration… one must never forget that The Times itself bears its own wildly outsized share of responsibility for its own blithe assistance in enabling the President to commit this country to a war that, whatever else you can say about it, was sold to the American people because of the threat of nuclear and other very nasty weapons in the hands of Saddam Hussein, a threat eventually proven to be non-existent. (And the protest undercount still pisses me off to this day.) Because whatever “standards” the Times has to integrity, to professionalism, to basic God damned fact checking… seem to have failed it in this one iddy bitty case, anyway… failed us all, actually.