About That Fake Schiavo Memo

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It is not. A GOP staffer has resigned over it.

It is tempting to rollcall all the entities that dove on the fake angle positing some Democratic dirty trick as indicated by the shallow-thinking on display in the memo.

But let's make it a global lesson to those, amateur and pro alike, who reflexively defend Republicans: They are just as shallow and cynical as Democrats, just in different ways. Most GOP members of Congress and staffers view the pro-life movement as just another interest group to be stroked and ignored as the situation dictates. That some dope saw an immediate political upside to the Schiavo case is not shocking, at least not to anyone familiar with how Washington works. That he was dumb enough to write it down, there's a story.

NEXT: Smoking Gun

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  1. I quote Stan from South Park, who only wanted his Okama Game Sphere:

    Don’t care, don’t care, don’t care.

  2. I second that emotion.

  3. Republicans: They are just as shallow and cynical as Democrats

    Likewise:

    Murderers: They are just as bad and dangerous as shoplifters

    Keep screaming: BUT GORE OR KERRY WOULD HAVE BEEN WORSE!!!!!1

  4. M1EK,

    What you meant to say: “Murderers: They are just as bad as cutthroats.”

  5. “Republicans: They are just as shallow and cynical as Democrats, just in different ways.”

    I often find myself in the position of trying to convince my friends that Democrats are just as shallow and cynical (and dishonest, and manipulative, and…) as Republicans. But these days it seems like my heart’s just not in it. Maybe they’ve finally sucked me in to their squishy academic liberalism, but my god the current batch of Republicans in DC are useless lowlife turds.

  6. what i like is the idea that congress got together for reasons which weren’t political, and expect people to believe it.

    and maybe people do.

    and can you really blame them for using the pro-lifers?

  7. This is politics as usual; where’s the surprise? Political parties are supposed to energize and be energized by their interest group/constituents/supporters.

    I wouldnt have resigned; he did his job identifying the political advantages and disadvantages. What’s next, military officials resigning because they talk about strategic advantages of invading Iraq?

    That’s their job.

  8. The memo wasn’t fake, but there was still plenty of crappy reporting that somehow all points, as crappy reporting in MSM outlets generally does, in a pro-Dem/anti-Rep direction.

    After all, the memo wasn’t from leadership, wasn’t distributed to Republicans in any meanigful way, and apparently served zero role in the whole deplorable kerfuffle over the dead girl. Contrary to what you read in the Post and the times and about 60 other legacy media outlets.

    Sure, it turns out the blog speculation that this was a Dem dirty trick was also wrong, but the bloggers were up front that they were speculating based on available evidence, and weren’t telling lies about where the memo came from and what purpose it served.

    Without the blog pushback, the falsities would have stood unchallenged.

    And I say this as someone who is 100% opposed to the preening, posturing power grab by the Reps on this issue.

  9. my god the current batch of Republicans in DC are useless lowlife turds.

    Not like Ted Kennedy and Robert Byrd, oh no.

  10. The venality of the democrats is of academic interest, but since the republicans control all three branches of the federal govt, the majority of states, the military, corporate america, about half of the internets (blog division that is), talk radio, Fox, etc., I don’t think it’s as simple as “they’re all crooks”. If we had sweet sweet divided government and the crooks were balancing each other out, that’d be one thing.

    That the “fake memo” story fell apart like a chinese moped shouldn’t surprize you, but there are armies of chumps out there who’ll fall for this stuff every time. I mean, they actually believe Powerline and Hannity . . . the mind boggles.

  11. Not like Ted Kennedy and Robert Byrd, oh no.

    Exactly like Kennedy and Byrd, and that’s the problem.

  12. The venality of the democrats is of academic interest, but since the republicans control all three branches of the federal govt, the majority of states, the military, corporate america, about half of the internets (blog division that is), talk radio, Fox, etc.

    The Dems still have network news anchors and Senate filibusters. Not to mention ethnic studies professors.

    Woe unto the world when the filibustering menace that is Harry Reid casts his shadow over DC and uses his mighty network news bully pulpit to direct his army of ethnic studies professors! Then shall ye see the true horror of hegemony!

  13. “my god the current batch of Republicans in DC are useless lowlife turds.”

    Exactly. It’s a cold day in hell that I’m cheering zingers uttered by Ted Kennedy and Henry Waxman.

    I wonder who should get the ultimate douchebag award.. Delay or Frist? Close call.

  14. thoreau,
    I’ve been reading your posts at H&R for years, but lately you seem to be outdoing yourself. Really hitting on key points with pithy style. Keep up the good work.

  15. ?well except for that bit about filibusters. After all, anything that prevents the Senate from doing stuff is necessarily a good thing.

  16. “Not like Ted Kennedy and Robert Byrd, oh no.”

    It’s not exactly a challenge to point out assholes on both sides of the aisle. It’s a question of the number of assholes and the degree of their assholitude. Right now it seems to me that the Reps have a significant lead there.

    “It’s a cold day in hell that I’m cheering zingers uttered by Ted Kennedy and Henry Waxman.”

    Yeah, that’s what I’m thinking too. Or, to paraphrase Jesse “The Body” Walker from an election piece he wrote last year, one of the worst things about W was that he made John Kerry look like a viable alternative for Prez.

  17. The pro-lifers just LINE UP to be used. Show them a chunk of human protoplasm that’s slightly warmer than room temperature and they’ll give it a name, confer human rights upon it, hold a candlelight vigil and pronounce its continued existence “sacred”.

  18. The Pro-life, hell, even the “culture of death” leaders are all getting what they want too. More publicity means more donations, more speaking engagements, and more people to buy their inevitable books.

  19. ?well except for that bit about filibusters. After all, anything that prevents the Senate from doing stuff is necessarily a good thing.

    In this particular case, it’s more of a matter of preventing the judiciary from doing stuff.

  20. The Republicans did not want to politicize poor Terri’s plight to about the same degree that our intelligence community was not influenced by political pressure in reaching the conclusion that Iraq was moments away from launching nukes (and yes, that overstates things– Bush just said “mushroom cloud,” which could have been a drug reference to his pre-born-again days). True believers of both parties just scare me– but Republicans in particular because they happen to be the assholes in power, and have taken things to a whole new level. Please God, bless us again with divided government, and SOON.

  21. In this particular case, it’s more of a matter of preventing the judiciary from doing stuff.

    No, it’s a matter of persuading the judiciary to do different stuff.

  22. As Kos pointed out 2 interesting things:

    1)The memo was penned by Martinez’ Chief Legal Counsel — a senior level position, not to mention a seasoned political pro; and

    2)Martinez himself passed out copies of the memo*

    (*he may be wrong on that one, just one ‘confirmed’ passing..so far..I believe)

    What did Martinez think he was handing Harkin? It’s not like he had a bunch of papers and it got mixed in there. Martinez says he handed just the one page over to Harkin. “Oh what’s this in my pocket? Why don’t you have it Tom ol’buddy!”.

    Also the St. Pete’s times catches other times ol’Martinez uses the “It was a staffer” excuse (http://www.sptimes.com/2004/11/04/Opinion/The_real_Mel_Martinez.shtml). A politicians “my dog ate it’ kind of excuse. πŸ™‚

  23. Its a good thing these people are pro-life and pro death penalty. I bet you someone will call for Michael Schivo to be killed for murder.

  24. Please God, bless us again with divided government, and SOON.

    That would have been easier if the Dems could have run Bill Clinton instead of the last two clowns. Godamn Amendment XXII.

  25. Republicans are shallow and cynical and stand for a lot of things many of us don’t agree with.

    Democrats are shallow and cynical and stand for whatever the Republicans are against because they don’t know quite what else to do.

    So if the Democrats end up being in favor of “fiscal responsiblity” only because the Republicans have abandoned it, why complain? Their only function in today’s government is to put a brake on Republican policies. Give them money.

  26. Warren-

    I wasn’t criticizing filibusters. I was mocking the notion that the Dems’ one remaining avenue in DC (filibusters) is somehow enough to give them hegemony. Everybody complains about the Dems and big government, but the truth is that the Dems’ grip on power has been in a downward spiral since 1994. Sure, they had Clinton for 6 years after 1994, but he was kept in check by a GOP Congress as well as time constraints imposed by his busy sex life πŸ˜‰

  27. Why can’t we all just agree

    Democracts sucks
    Republicans suck
    Greens are just Nuts
    Libertarians are… well… hmmm…

    Go Natural Law Party!!!!!

    j/k

  28. Uh, yeah, on the one hand, on the other hand…

    Somebody please finish this sentence for me:

    “The venality and intellectual corruption demonstrated by this memo was just like when the Democrats __________________”

  29. “The venality and intellectual corruption demonstrated by this memo was just like when the Democrats __________________”

    …suckered me into voting for Kerry.

  30. They are just as shallow and cynical as Democrats, just in different ways.

    Uhmmm… Isn’t this just a politics thing? What’s different about it?

    If the libertarians or the greens or any other third party actually gain a lick of power memos like this will be “accidentally leaked” at some point.

    I feel it’s just like in sports – some people only care if their team wins, not if the game was any entertaining at all.

  31. joe, try these:

    The venality and intellectual corruption demonstrated by this memo was just like when the Democrats tried to steal the 2000 election.

    The venality and intellectual corruption demonstrated by this memo was just like when the Democrats claimed that the Florida Highway Patrol set up roadblocks to intimidate African-American voters. (And of course every other race-baiting act routinely used by dims – and of course by reps in their own way).

    Of course as a Dimmycrap true believer you reject this just as Repuglicon true believers reject the venality of their acts.

    I credit your position on the attempted vote theft to your ignorance of the facts and FL election law rather than venality. After all you were spoon fed your info by dem spinners.

    The case proves, against all odds, that Richard Nixon had more class than Al Gore.

    And I actually wish Al Gore had won (I’m not sure how much different it would have been) (Actually I wish it had been Bill Clinton . Godamn Amendment XXII). Though I think the Dems did serious damage to the rule of law in 2000, just as the Reps did in 2005 with the TS case (note that if the polls are any indication the Republicans will suffer because of TS, whereas the dems benefitted from 2000).

  32. Isaac, the appropriateness of Democratic challenges, and Republican challenges, at various points in the Florida saga is a subject issue.

    Are you actually claiming the same of this memo?

  33. I assume you mean subjective.

    And, yes I suppose I am. Without trying to get into an involved in a long discussion with a true believer. Kind of like trying to discuss the Schiavo case with BillyRay. πŸ™‚

    Both parties need to motivate the base and will use whatever lies, untruths, halftruths, and misconstrued facts to do this.

    You are a Democrat true-believer so the burden of proof of Dem wrong-doing is necessarily high.

    I sometimes envy the faithful, it must be truly comforting to believe.

  34. And since the burden of proof of Dem wrong-doing is necessarily high for you, I have no interest in meeting it.

    I don’t really care if people believe in fairy tales, they provide me with whatever amusement I get from the dungheap of life. πŸ™‚

  35. Wait, I just realized something:

    Here we have a Schiavo thread and no BillyRay appearances.

    Sure, it’s not directly related to the question of the tube, so it’s not quite the same interest for him, but still.

    What has changed between the last Schiavo thread and now?

  36. thoreau, behave!!

    Guffaw, snort,

  37. but thoreau —

    even there’s no billy ray, we have one of our resident big government conservative assholes trying to pretend that their side isn’t chock full of assholes – just like the other side of the aisle. instead of saying “yup” and moving on, this particular dildobrain (who doesn’t know his map of europe, but sure has opinions about it) does the old john thompson “deflect the issue”.

    you know, he’s probably as tough as billy ray. what a tough guy.

  38. So to sum up, I baited Republican partisans to provide an example of Democratic misbehavior that is roughly equivalent to the production and distribution of this memo. Here’s what I got in reply:

    When the state Democratic Party of a state that was still under a court order for violations of the Voting Rights Act received complaints that black voters were being intimidated, they didn’t dismiss the complaints out of hand, and instead called for an investigation.

    I’d say that’s pretty much the same thing as urging your colleagues to inject the federal government into the Schiavo case on the grounds that it is good politics. You know, six of one, half dozen of the other.

    Isaac, if you’re still here, I’m feeling GOOD right about now.

  39. joe

    I am not a “Republican partisan”, I assumed that this was a general challenge since only one of the preceding commenters displayed the remotest level “Republican partisan”ship, and his was a really, really mild defense. Any further argument might be interpreted as a defense of Republicans rather than a neutral defense of the truth. I “defend” Republicans occasionally for the same reasons as I occasionally “defend” Bill Clinton and other Democrats (ie against unfair characterizations). You, as a Democrat partisan, naturally have a way of inferring Republican partisanship when anyone dares to criticize Democrats.

    You on the other hand see virtue in one party, which I consider to be a misguided attitude but possibly one arrived at honestly and for good reasons.

    I realize that you do not see the equally cynical and opportunistic practices of both parties that others here have commented on, so OK, I’ll let it be. As I said before, I don’t really care. So if you’re still there feel as good as you want to. You have a right to feel good anyway since people like you are in charge at pretty much all levels of government, as much as you complain that you’re not.

    Now, as a gesture of goodwill, any time you want to drink to what fucking lowlife, corrupt, *, hypocritical scumbags Delay and the rest of the Repuglicon leadership are, I’ll buy. But don’t expect me to do anything but walk out in disgust in response to you wanting to toast the virtue the Dimmycraps.

    *feel free to add any all derogatory adjectives here πŸ™‚

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