A few months ago when excerpts of his book proposal had leaked, GW professor Jonathan Turley had some harsh words about the conspiracy surrounding Valerie Plame, and the subsequent cover-up.
Now that McClellan’s book is being released, there’s some hype emerging. So far everything I’ve seen is stuff [most of us] have known for ages; but this is admittedly the first solid inside verification of these crimes and cover-ups. Politico has a good exclusive on it. Some excerpts:
“[President Bush] and his advisers confused the propaganda campaign with the high level of candor and honesty so fundamentally needed to build and then sustain public support during a time of war. … In this regard, he was terribly ill-served by his top advisers, especially those involved directly in national security.”
Regarding his public denial that Libby or Rove had leaked classified information:
“I had allowed myself to be deceived into unknowingly passing along a falsehood… it would ultimately prove fatal to my ability to serve the president effectively. I didn’t learn that what I’d said was untrue until the media began to figure it out almost two years later.”
Read: I am not a felon, because although I passed along a lie, I did not know it was a lie when I did so.
“Neither, I believe, did President Bush. He, too, had been deceived and therefore became unwittingly involved in deceiving me. But the top White House officials who knew the truth — including Rove, Libby and possibly Vice President Cheney — allowed me, even encouraged me, to repeat a lie.”
This is where I do not share McClellan’s optimism about the President. Especially when you consider what McLellan later says about the President’s case for war:
“If anything, the national press corps was probably too deferential to the White House and to the administration in regard to the most important decision facing the nation during my years in Washington, the choice over whether to go to war in Iraq. The collapse of the administration’s rationales for war, which became apparent months after our invasion, should never have come as such a surprise.”
And to what would later turn out to be optimistic forecasts about the financial impact of Iraq:
“Bush was ‘clearly irritated, … steamed,’ when McClellan informed him that chief economic adviser Larry Lindsey had told The Wall Street Journal that a possible war in Iraq could cost from $100 billion to $200 billion: “‘It’s unacceptable,’ Bush continued, his voice rising. ‘He shouldn’t be talking about that.'”
So: lie about a war that costs thousands of lives and trillions of dollars; lie about outing a covert CIA operative; order violations of the fourth amendment and lie about that – as a nation, we can live with all of this.
But lie about a blow job and get impeached. Welcome, folks, to the government we deserve.