How quick Karl Rove was to criticize the left and go home without signing any books in Beverly Hills when members of Code Pink dared to confront him.
Considering what Karl Rove has done in his political career beginning when he was still in his teens, disrupting a book signing rates as minimalist activity. This man has an extensive track record of which he is proud beginning with the days when he emulated the tactics of his idol Richard Nixon.
Rove launched his dirty tricks activities when he handed out handbills to the downtrodden, particularly of the inebriated variety, encouraging them to attend a campaign headquarters opening for Alan Dixon in Illinois when the future U.S. Senator was running for secretary of state.
Then there was that occasion when Rove reported that he found a bug in his office when he was seeking to lift the sagging campaign of his lackluster Texas gubernatorial candidate Bill Clements against Democrat Mark White.
The bug was found the same day as the crucial debate between the two candidates was held and reporters, conceding that it made no sense at all for Democrats to bug Rove's office, reported that White was thrown off stride that evening and delivered a sub par performance.
The tide turned that evening and Clements came from behind to defeat a far more articulate and overall superior candidate in White. Rove even conceded that he had watched on VHS the Richard Gere film "Power." Directed by Sidney Lumet, this 1986 movie contained a scene wherein Gere planted a bug in his own office and blamed it on the opposition.
Finally Rove moved up to presidential politics with his exciting new discovery George W. Bush. Candidate Bush teamed up with Bush's brother Jeb, Florida's governor, and Rove to steal an election that was rightfully won by Vice President Al Gore.
A variety of stunts was employed. One consisted of Jeb Bush scrubbing the voting rolls of "suspected felons" in Florida, disenfranchising scores of minority voters without criminal records. There was then the march through the courts leading to the one vote victory at the U.S. Supreme Court with leading Federalist Society jurists Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas making the difference.
Before the courtroom scenario played itself out the Bush team and Rove conspired with Roger Ailes of Fox News to have John Ellis, a cousin of the Bushes, in charge of making election calls that evening.
When the initial call was made by cousin Ellis for Bush the remaining networks followed and the Republican candidate held the advantage of presumptive winner, which surely aided him during the entire period between election night and the ultimate decision rendering.
How quick young student Rove, then living in Salt Lake City, was to identify with Richard Nixon's demonizing as unpatriotic those who opposed the Vietnam War. Nixon reached into his old bag of tricks to tarnish such anti-war activity activists as disloyal.
Rove led the march toward declaring as unpatriotic anyone opposing Bush on anything, even on tax cuts, following 9/11. "We are at war!" was the unceasing mantra drummed into the public consciousness, especially at Fox News.
The idea was that we had to be vigilant in fighting foreign terrorism and that we were at war following 9/11. Hence there was to be no opposition to George W. Bush for any reason.
How interesting it was to hear Rove in an interview the other day respond to a question about his outing of Valerie Plame, a CIA anti-terrorist expert and weapons analyst. Plame was involved specifically in the very area that Bush and Rove proclaimed to be so vital.
What did Rove say when he was confronted? He responded that outing Plame was not all that important, in colloquial terms, not that big a deal.
Once more right wing hypocrisy was exposed in the case of one of the leading dirty tricksters and smear artists in American political history.