Thursday, July 05, 2007

JG Editorial Board Obviously Didn't Follow the Valerie Plame Investigation

This the 2nd time the JG editorial page has been wildly off the mark with regards to the Scooter Libby trial. Their parroting of right-wing talking points is either proof that they didn't follow the case and have no idea what they're talking about, or that they believe in the doctrine of "both sides are equally right and we must give equal credence to both arguments".

I originally wrote a much longer point-by-point rebuttal but I ultimately decided to only focus on one specific portion of the editorial. I did this because it is most blatantly incorrect statement I have ever seen from the JG editorial page. And after exposing this the credibility of the entire piece is shot. The JG opines:
The conviction of I. Lewis Scooter Libby was highly suspect and did not serve democracy. Whether Plame really was an unknown CIA operative was questionable.

Her covert status was not under question whatsoever - except perhaps by the pundits on Faux News. Special Prosecutoer Patrick Fitzgerald publicly said she was covert:
Valerie Wilson was a CIA officer. In July 2003, the fact that Valerie Wilson was a CIA officer was classified. Not only was it classified, but it was not widely known outside the intelligence community.

Valerie Wilson's friends, neighbors, college classmates had no idea she had another life.

The fact that she was a CIA officer was not well- known, for her protection or for the benefit of all us. It's important that a CIA officer's identity be protected, that it be protected not just for the officer, but for the nation's security.

Obviously that wasn't enough for the JG. But when the Bush-appointed director of the CIA, Michael Hayden, releases a statement to Congress telling them that she was covert - I mean what more do they need:
During her employment at the CIA, Ms. Wilson was undercover. Her employment status with the CIA was classified information, prohibited from disclosure under Executive Order 12958. At the time of the publication of Robert Novak's column on July 14, 2003, Ms. Wilson's CIA employment status was covert.

Does it get any more cut and dry than that? Where is the "questionable" part of that statement? Tracy Warner should print an immediate retraction...

14 comments:

nhshutter said...

Feaux News? Maybe you meant Faux? Once again, you don't like it so it must be bad, wrong, fake. FOX news is no more slanted than CNN. Why doesn't the left get a new ad-hominem attack?

Covert / not covert is not really the point. Was a law broken? Did she fit the definition? Fitzgerald knew who leaked but did not charge that person with a crime. Why not? Is it possible that no crime was committed?

JG parroting right wing talking points? How far to the left do you have to go to be able to say that?

Editorial page is the opinion part of the newspaper. You now want to limit people's opinions? You want him to think a certain way? I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion as long as it agrees with yours.

Jeff Pruitt said...

Yes the spell checker didn't catch Faux.

Take a deep breath and re-read what I wrote. Then try again to explain how it is wrong.

Let me try again:

It is FACT that Plame's status was covert. End of story. There is no arguing that point. The JG presents an opinion that contradicts that FACT. Just because you have an opinion doesn't make it FACTUAL. If your argument/opinion are based on premises that are provably untrue then your argument is invalid.

" Was a law broken? Did she fit the definition? Fitzgerald knew who leaked but did not charge that person with a crime. Why not? Is it possible that no crime was committed?"

This was one of the points that I rebutted in my original piece and is a classic right-wing talking point. Patrick Fitzgerald said that he was unable to determine if there was a crime because Libby obstructed justice and committed perjury. People should read about the facts of the case instead of listening to Hannity, Beck, Rush, etc...

Parson said...

I wonder, what does a covert opertive put down on the "ocupation" line of their tax form?

It looks like the JG formed a opinion then had to bend the facts to match it. Writing a blog it's easy to get carried away when your mad about something and write stuff that doesn't match the facts (not you but other bloggers do it sometimes), but a "professional journalist" should know better.

nhshutter said...

Have you heard of or read the IIPA? You may call it a "talking point" I prefer to call it a legitimate question. I won't dispute that she was considered covert. My question (and possibly JG's opinion) is - Did she fit the definition in IIPA? Had she lived outside of the US in the last 5 years?

Now, take a deap breath, try analyzing the actual law that was alleged to have been broken. You rely on left wing talking points to make your accusations. Revealing a covert agent's name does not break the law in and of itself. You must actually read the IIPA to know what else is required. Don't fall prey to the spin, research the facts.

Robert Rouse said...

Oh yeah, the IIPA - and I'm assuming you're not talking about the International Copyright organization. You forgot to mention that the IIPA was written BEFORE the CIA came into existence, but, I'll allow it - The part I'm certain you're referring to says, "who is serving outside the United States or has within the last five years served outside the United States." It doesn't say "lived or resided", it says "served", which Valerie Plame had indeed served outside the US in the five years leading up to Novak's article. Oops! Hey nhshutter, don't fall prey to the spin, research the facts.

nhshutter said...

I'm sorry, I thought it was common knowledge that the current statue was written in response to the killing of a CIA agent. My references say 1982. Pretty sure the CIA existed in 1982. Valerie had not been stationed outside the US for 6 years prior to Novak's column. She had traveled outside the US but had not been stationed. Traveling may not meet the definition of an agent protected under the act.

If Fitzgerald knew the leaker but didn't prosecute then why? If there is no crime then false statements about the non crime are not a crime.

Obstruction of justice? If Fitzgerald knew the leaker and didn't have reason to prosecute then what prosecution was obstructed?
And give me a break, how lame is it for Fitzgerald to assert that he was unable to determine if a crime was committed. To know Libby lied you must know the truth and yet still no prosecution for the original crime.

Robert Rouse said...

So let me see if I have this straight - lying to a grand jury under oath is not a crime. Wow, in that case, I guess Victor Rita shouldn't be in jail. And lying to the FBI is not a crime either I suppose. Hey, you know what, when Bill Clinton lied, I said that was wrong. That's the major difference between many members of the right and the left. Most of us on the left don't care who it is that does something wrong, we'll go after them. Most of them on the right will circle the wagons to defend their people no matter how bad the crime - like, oh I don't know - violating the Constitution over and over again like the Bush administration does. You're an idiot!

Jeff Pruitt said...

In regards to the IIPA, are you suggesting that if you are sent overseas by the CIA that this is NOT "serving" overseas? What the hell is it then? There's absolutely nothing in the law that says you have to LIVE overseas - you made that up. If you are in the military and sent to Iraq then you "served" in Iraq. Why would it be different for an employee of the CIA? I must ask, did you read the IIPA?

And like the JG you apparantly didn't follow the case or any of Patrick Fitzgerald's statements. The special prosecutor himself said that her status met the IIPA definition of covert:

"At the time of the leaks, Ms Wilson in fact qualified as a "covert agent" within the meaning of the IIPA"

So just to recap:

1)She was covert - JG wrong
2)Her covert status protected by the IIPA according to the special prosecutor - nhshutter wrong

I will reiterate my basic point. Most of the people talking about this case have absolutely NO KNOWLEDGE of the facts. They should all take the time to learn them before spouting off...

John Good said...

I will reiterate my basic point. Most of the people talking about this case have absolutely NO KNOWLEDGE of the facts. They should all take the time to learn them before spouting off...

Now, Jeff. . .play nice! He has NO control over what the right-wing vox humanas program into his brain - he merely listens in as a loyal Merkan!

Charlotte A. Weybright said...

NHSHUTTER said,

"I'm sorry, I thought it was common knowledge that the current statue was written in response to the killing of a CIA agent."

Just an aside, Jeff. But since shutter decided to dump on you for "feaux news", gee, I am pretty sure a "statue" is something found in a park or on Liberty Island. :) Guess his/her knowledge checker didn't catch that.

nhshutter said...

Perjury and obstruction are related to crimes. Where is the crime? They knew the leaker and have not prosecuted. Where is the crime????

You don't have to like it or agree with it but many challenge whether Plame's status fit the definition of th IIPA. Evan Novak asks the question.

If she doesn't fit the definition there is no crime and the investigation is then prosecutorial abuse.

"That's the major difference between many members of the right and the left. Most of us on the left don't care who it is that does something wrong, we'll go after them. Most of them on the right will circle the wagons to defend their people no matter how bad the crime"
What color is the sky in your world? The left go after those that do wrong??? Let me wipe the tears of laughter from my eyes.
Your party reelects and applauds a child molester (Gary Studds). The right removes from office someone who writes dirty emails (Mark Foley).

Jeff p. - read some of the analysis of the IIPA and maybe the IIPA itself. Your example proves my point. If you are stationed in Iraq then you are living in Iraq for a period of time. We don't fly soldiers to Iraq for a few days and then fly them home.
Just to recap - Covert according to IIPA - not yet determined. If it was determined than the person they knew leaked the information would have been charged with a crime. Where is the crime? Who has been charged? Just to recap - No one yet charged? Ask yourself why

Anyone that refers to Fox news as Faux news isn't really worth debating. To imply that Fox is fake news because it doesn't lean to the left like CNN or MSNBC is proves ones inability to debate rationally.

Jeff Pruitt said...

"You don't have to like it or agree with it but many challenge whether Plame's status fit the definition of th IIPA. Evan Novak asks the question."

Good grief. Novak? He's a partisan hack. Many challenge it? Yet you dismiss the special prosecutor put in charge to investigate the whole thing - I'm sorry but his opinion weighs much heavier than everyone else's. I've pointed to Fitzgerald's own reasoning for why another crime wasn't charged - you ignored it and presented an argument that I obliterated. Like I said, stick around - I'll learn ya...

nhshutter said...

You are correct. I am dismissing the special prosecutor put in charge. He knew it was Armitage but took his investigation elsewhere. He was in charge, knew who did it yet still went fishing elsewhere.

I would think you would be mad and upset about our government using the power of a prosecutor to harrass citizens. You have a prosecutor that knew who did it but ended up pursuing a 3-4 person he said / she said case.

"learn ya" - Not really interested in learning mindless partisan hatred.

nhshutter said...

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/07/19/cia.leak/index.html

Game, Set, Match

CNN can't even bring themselves to acknowledge that it was the VALERIE PLAME lawsuit. "Tosses out ex-spy's lawsuit". Come on CNN use her name - VALERIE PLAME !!

Joseph Wilson's dream and desire to see Rove "frogmarched" out of the Whitehouse will not happen. I hope you and all Americans are ashamed at what Fitzgerald and the Wilsons attempted to do. I find it quite embarissing as a US citizen to see what irrational hate will cause people like the Wilsons to do.