Melting in the midwest…
What was that I said about posting from the road? I’m nearing the end of my sweltering-in-150%-humidity east/midwest visit. My mother hasn’t noticed that the blog is now over 7 days old, but that’s because my presence keeps her away from the computer. I simply must check in today, however, because I see on the front page of what passes for a newspaper here that Bush has rushed his Supreme Court nominee into the news cycle, no doubt hoping to distract from the growing Rove crisis and simultaneously “feed the base”?
This little publication never disappoints me for sheer comic entertainment on its editorial page: today it declares (the link is not available, yet) “there’s a huge question as to whether Plame actually was a covert agent.” Apparently the editorialists hadn’t yet read the Wall Street Journal (via TPM). And they declare that the attacks on Rove are “politically motivated” and thus Bush is justified in altering “his standard” for firing the leaker.
The Democrats should stop calling for Rove to resign and instead take a page from the GOP/Luntz playbook. Just keep saying Rove and treason together in as many possible media forums as possible. Everyone knows the Democrats want Rove to resign. That’s not a message that gets embedded in the public mind. It’s only a tactic that feeds into the Rove strategy of throwing up enough flak to confuse people and have the media report on this as a partisan fight, rather than an act of betraying the national security interests of the United States of America.
Rove’s outing of Plame has made us all less safe, seriously less safe. Because she specialized in the tracking the illicit sales of Weapons of Mass Destruction. People’s lives have been endangered as a result of the White House’s betrayal.
And the Democrats shouldn’t make this about Joe Wilson — a man of boundless courage — vs. Bush, which is what Rove wants. The Department of Justice investigation was initiated at the request of the CIA, by George Tenet, who Bush gave a Medal of Freedom to. The CIA believed and believes that the national security of the United States of America was compromised. This is Rove, Bush and Cheney vs. the CIA and the national security of the United States of America. Period.
Our national security was compromised because a couple of Bush aides had it out for Wilson – who had single-handedly undermined their fabricated case for war. Kevin Drum has a thoughtful post on this.
What all these middling generalities suggest, perhaps, is that Democrats are still unwilling to put their more concrete convictions about the country into words, either because they don’t know what those convictions are or because they lack confidence in the notion that voters can be persuaded to embrace them. Either way, this is where the power of language meets its outer limit. The right words can frame an argument, but they will never stand in its place.
…Many on the “Christian Right” are fond of posing the question “WWJD?– What would Jesus do?” I’d like to remind them what Jesus DID do: he cared for the poor. He did not condemn the woman caught in adultery. He prayed alone. He commanded us to love our enemies. He preached peace. He ate, drank, and lived with “tax collectors and sinners”—the lowlifes and outcasts of his day—while reserving his condemnation for the religious leaders who from a place of privilege imposed their legalism and literalism on the people they were responsible for leading. He told his disciples not to oppose the healing work of those outside the ranks of his followers. And again and again he reminded us to care for the poor. (That moral issue gets more air time than any other in the gospels: 1 verse in 9.) If Christians concerned about how to respond to the grave global issues facing us all were to reread the Gospels for guidance, I think we’d find some pretty clear indications there about what Jesus would do. And what he wouldn’t…