I freely and readily admit to being at a loss over the Plame thing. Scooter Libby has been indicted, but as far as I can tell, it’s only over things he said and did during the investigation, not for any wrongdoing related directly to the disclosure of Valerie Plame’s status as a secret agent for the CIA. (If I’m wrong, please correct me…I make no claims to being anything approaching knowledgeable about legal procedures and the terminology associated with them.)
The media remains hopeful that Karl Rove and/or other will still be indicted, a hope that made my local newspaper’s front page top row all the way across the page. But no bias, mister. No sirree.
Anyway, so far we’ve got a senior aide to the VP indicted. But no one has been charged with anything directly related to the leaking of Plame’s ID or even with doing it as retaliation against her husband Joseph Wilson. Which was the whole point.
Don’t get me wrong. Not only do I think that the charges against ‘Scooter’ Libby are serious and that he should be punished appropriately if found guilty, but I’m skeptical that his missteps and misdeeds are all the dirt that’s to be found in the administration’s laundry here. Libby resigned immediately, which is good. I believe that this counts as “out of the administration”, though others doubtlessly disagree.
Still, the fact that two years and millions of dollars have not produced more than this is more than a little telling. While not giving anyone a free pass, more than two years of breathless headlines and countless calls for Rove’s head (and even Cheney’s resignation) seem a little silly today.
At Mass this morning, our priest compared today’s rants by the opposing political parties to the rants during the Clinton/Lewinsky affair, and his point was that when the shoes were on the other feet, the positions were different. As today’s subject at church was hypocrisy, this is a valid point and is something that should trouble people a lot more than it apparently does.
(As a side note, after our priest outlined the various positions held at various times by the various political parties, he asked what that made the politicians. A lot in the congregation said “CROOKS!”, even though the answer the priest was looking for was “hypocrites”. No argument here.)
But I’d like MO’s readers to recall the careful eye the media kept on that witch-hunter Ken Starr during his investigation, including the time and dollars spent. I’ve not been following the Plame thing for some time, but I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a similar story about Special Investigator Patrick Fitzgerald. I’m sure that some mention has been made, generally in Right-leaning outlets. And I don’t know how the dollar amounts compare.
A bigger difference, though, is the lucky recipient of the indictment. If the lone winner in the last administration had been Al Gore’s senior adviser, it wouldn’t have mattered enough to enough people to make it worthy of mention in this morning’s homily in church. Even if he had been convicted.
At this point, I don’t find this story any more interesting than I did a week ago. Until more information is available, there doesn’t seem to be much point in debating it. That hasn’t stopped anyone so far, though.