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Government by Dirty Tricks

By Patricia Goldsmith  Posted by Rob Kall (about the submitter)     Permalink
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George W. Bush is the kind of guy you remember if you happen to cross his path -- at least his economics professor at Harvard Business School thinks so.
Bush, you will recall, was at Harvard immediately after he left the Alabama National Guard -- if he was ever there to begin with. He openly boasted to Tsurumi about using pull to get into a champagne unit, and Tsurumi was shocked. Most people wouldn 't do that, especially back then.

He showed pathological lying habits and was in denial when challenged on his prejudices and biases. He would even deny saying something he just said 30 seconds ago. He was famous for that.

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Students who challenged and embarrassed Bush in class would then become the subject of a whispering campaign by him, Tsurumi said. "In class, he couldn 't challenge them. But after class, he sometimes came up to me in the hallway and started bad-mouthing those students who had challenged him. He would complain that someone was drinking too much. It was innuendo and lies. So that 's how I knew, behind his smile and his smirk, that he was a very insecure, cunning and vengeful guy.

This past week when George W. Bush stood on the lawn of his ranch in Crawford, he declared that he supported Cindy Sheehan 's constitutional right to her strong opinion against the war in Iraq. This is America, he said. And the minute he was on the record as backing her First Amendment rights, the attack dogs went off the leash.

That 's the kind of government we have now. It 's run by people who have the mentality of 13-year-olds who repeat everything you say. Everything is carried out in the spirit of a very nasty practical joke whose very stupidity is a tremendous insult. Unfortunately, these puerile tactics do accomplish their purpose:
they make us disengage.

This technique, refined, rehearsed, backed by bottomless resources, has had just that effect on the portion of the American public that might actually resist the fascist takeover we are witnessing. Many people who are on our side still cannot get past a certain level of spin without disengaging. Our retreat is a victory for Karl Rove, every single time; he just keeps racking them up.

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It is this spotless record of retribution, in large part, that keeps the press in line.

And are they ever in line. Richard Cohen, a columnist with the Washington Post feels that Karl Rove 's outing of undercover CIA agent Valerie Plame "is not a major story. It 's a crappy little crime and it may not be a crime at all. "

Jim VandeHei, a staff writer at the Pos t, is perhaps even more aggressively pro-administration. When asked in an online chat why reporters even bother to question Scott McClellan, given the hit to his reputation after the dramatic revelation that Karl Rove had indeed leaked Valerie Plame 's name. Said VandeHei, "Scott has a lot of credibility with reporters. He is seen as someone who might not tell you a lot, but is not going to tell you a lie. "

Could it be that VandeHei and others in the corporate media identify with McClellan 's lack of credibility?

The Post was, of course, aggressively pro-war before we went into Iraq, but they are not alone in conferring legitimacy and respect on this rogue government. The mainstream media in general rigidly enforce respect for an administration whose anti-democratic actions are beyond the pale. For example, Michael Goodwin, a columnist and former editorial page editor of the New York Daily News, a journalist who has won a Pulitzer, worked at the New York Times, and taught at Columbia University School of Journalism, has actually recently criticized the White House press corps for being too rough on Scott McClellan.

The intense grilling that White House reporters inflicted on presidential spokesman Scott McClellan Monday over whether political guru Karl Rove leaked the name of a CIA operative was no ordinary give-and-take. It was a hostile hectoring that revealed much of the mainstream press for what it has become: the opposition party. . . .

That the mainstream media are basically liberals with press passes has been documented by virtually every study that measures reporters ' political identification and issue positions. But bias has now stepped over into blatant opposition, a stance the media will regret. Instead of providing unvarnished facts obtained by aggressive but fair reporting, the media will be reduced to providing comfort food to ideological comrades.

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It 's hard to see what ideology has to do with a story about a White House -- a Republican White House! -- that leaks information endangering our national security for political purposes during what they like to call wartime. Without offering a single specific example of an out of bounds question, a distinguished senior journalist is reminding journalists -- in particular the young reporters who are being socialized into journalistic ethics and standards -- of professional ground rules with respect to the corporate Bush administration. Dan Rather is another sort of reminder.

Rather came back into the news when Rush Limbaugh said in his broadcast of August 15:

I mean Cindy Sheehan is just Bill Burkett.
Her story is nothing more than forged documents. There 's nothing about it that 's real, including the mainstream media 's glomming onto it. It 's not real. It 's nothing more than an attempt. It 's the latest effort made by the coordinated left.

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