Rove Should Resign. No, He Shouldn't.

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Forget the possible technicalities of the law, says conservative columnist Jay Ambrose:

There is no question that Rove has done both himself and the president's legislative agenda a huge disservice by not confessing immediately. He has given the president's enemies a huge amount of ammunition, and the bullets will not stop flying as long as Rove keeps his job. He has begun to do the right thing through his current admissions, perhaps to save reporters from jail time, perhaps out of some other calculation. He should keep doing the right thing by resigning, and if he doesn't, the president should keep his word and boot him back to private life.

Whole thing here.

No way, sez the Wall Street Journal, Rove is the greatest American hero since William Katt hung up his tights:

Mr. Rove is turning out to be the real "whistleblower" in this whole sorry pseudo-scandal. He's the one who warned Time's Matthew Cooper and other reporters to be wary of Mr. Wilson's credibility. He's the one who told the press the truth that Mr. Wilson had been recommended for the CIA consulting gig by his wife, not by Vice President Dick Cheney as Mr. Wilson was asserting on the airwaves. In short, Mr. Rove provided important background so Americans could understand that Mr. Wilson wasn't a whistleblower but was a partisan trying to discredit the Iraq War in an election campaign. Thank you, Mr. Rove.

Whole thing here.

I agree with Reason's own Jesse Walker regarding the general uselessness of the Intelligence Identities Protection Act. And I agree with Reason's own Jeff A. Taylor that the Bush White House dyslexicon is rapidly shifting into Clintonian gear.

And I agree with millions of Americans that this is a better country since The Greatest American Hero went off the air in 1983. I disagree to this day with the millions of Americans who helped make its theme song, "Believe It or Not," a monster AM radio hit that haunts me–and the distant reaches of outer space–to this day.

NEXT: Throwing out the Merlot With the Bathwater

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  1. ARGH. “THANKS”, Nick for putting that song in my head. argh! It also brings back memories of David Gillespie (no joke, that – honest!) playing that character in one of those gawdawful school productions. Then they did a terrible number on french fries, lead by David Mann. — there were a lot of “Davids” in my school…

    Since the Wednesday tax column changed hands from the excellent Scott Schmedel back in the early 90s, the paper hasn’t been the same. sigh.

  2. Hey! “Believe It or Not” was a great song.

  3. Mr. Rove is turning out to be the real “whistleblower” in this whole sorry pseudo-scandal. He’s the one who warned Time’s Matthew Cooper and other reporters to be wary of Mr. Wilson’s credibility. He’s the one who told the press the truth that Mr. Wilson had been recommended for the CIA consulting gig by his wife, not by Vice President Dick Cheney as Mr. Wilson was asserting on the airwaves. In short, Mr. Rove provided important background so Americans could understand that Mr. Wilson wasn’t a whistleblower but was a partisan trying to discredit the Iraq War in an election campaign. Thank you, Mr. Rove.

    But the Yellowcake thing turned out to be bogus, and Wilson was correct. So, in effect, the War Street Journal is thanking Rove for attacking the motives of someone who uncovered a bogus document. This makes him a “whistleblower”? Buncha fuckin crackpots. Anything for the War, right?

    As for ‘Believe it or Not’, I gotta say, it was immortalized by George Costanza…

    “…I must be out, or I’d pick up the phone! Where could I be!? Believe it or not, I’m not hoooooome!”

    Brilliant!

  4. You’re just mad because Robert Culp revealed that being a fuzzy headed liberal dork with super powers was still less cool than being a government tool with a 1911 Colt.

  5. You see, the real problem with the First Amendment is that it allows crap like the Greatest American Hero to exist. Stalin’s Russia could never have produced something so vile.

    Sadly, freedom means putting up with that wickedness which is now also rattling through my brain.

  6. I’m just here to keep bandying the word, “impeach.”

  7. If Rove doesn’t resign, the soap-opera Americans and those who supply them are going to act unhappy. Some of them may actually _be_ unhappy. That’s reason enough to keep Rove.

  8. Hey! “Believe It or Not” was a great song.

    Yeah…we played that in middle school band. Oh, the memories…

  9. “Look at what’s happened to me!
    I can’t believe it myself!
    Suddenly I’m up on top of the world
    It should have been somebody else…”

    Take it away, boys!

  10. Evan: I prefer his version of “The Most Beautiful Girl.”

  11. Rove should go because he is just too damn ugly to look at. 🙂

  12. Not to take any side in the Rove-Novak-Plame-Miller-whoever thing, but am I alone in thinking that the whole affair is really much ado about nothing (or too much ado about little)? I mean it all has the whiff of impropriety, but I’m thinking that, in say 50 years, people will wonder what all the fuss was about…much like the Clinton-Lewinsky affair. Have we got our panties all in a knot during the last 10 years?

  13. What strikes me about the WSJ article is this: if Rove was really just doing us a favor, why did Rove lie – and yes, he did lie – about not being a source for Plame’s outing? A straight up answer at the time would make the whole “doing it for my country” speel more believable.

  14. Hakluyt,
    Obviously it’s because he feared the juggernaut that is Joe Wilson and Rove has no close friends with comparable power.

    I too fail to see what the big deal about this issue is anymore. I just want this to be over. At least Lewinsky, while awaste of money, gave us cigar jokes for years.

  15. Dammit Gillespie, I’m trying to work here. Rove’s crimes pale in comparison to that of outing Katt and Culp.

  16. Mo,

    Well, it is nice to see the Bushies become so Clintonian. 🙂

  17. Mo,

    I still that he should be banished because he is so ugly.

  18. Last night I saw “Bad Santa” for the first (and probably only) time. The thought crossed my mind: Karl Rove is BillyBob’s wussy kid friend who grows up and realizes the world is full of politicians and Reasonoids, and begins to act accordingly.

  19. New conspiracy theory: Bush and Clinton are actually the same person.

    The evidence:
    Both have stellar educations yet still manage to sound a bit thick. Both have public speaking problems (one can’t shut up, the other can’t start). Both claimed to favor smaller government but have done their best to make government even bigger. Both seem like they might really be nice guys in person, yet surround themselves with truly creepy people (compare their Attorneys-General and see if you can spot the difference). Neither really “fits” his party’s congressional representation.

    I’m also betting that Bush’s supreme court appointment(s) will be just as egregious as Clinton’s.

    They’re clones of the same person!

  20. Evan Williams: can’t vouch for the accuracy or much of anything else in this link, but Jim Lindgren at Volokh seems to think that pretty much everything Wilson said was a lie. He and the WSJ are probably workign from the same premises.

  21. Of course, there are also all of those people who have made the DVD box sets of “The Greatest American Hero” a cash cow for Anchor Bay Entertainment.

  22. Believe it or not, George isn’t at home.
    Please leave a message at the beep.
    I must be out, or I’d pick up the phone.
    Where could I be?
    Believe it or not, I’m not home.

  23. Just because the song sucked doesn’t mean it wasn’t worthwhile. What the hell else did Glen Campbell have to do that year, anyway?

  24. Doug-

    Totally off-topic, but since you’re here I should say that I found Hank Dietle’s tavern. I didn’t have time to go in, but I drove past. It’s there and open.

  25. Strange anniversary for a loser from Spain:

    $$$$$$$$$$July 16, 2004$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
    Kerry Dumps Joe Wilson
    Remember how John Kerry was just amazed with Joe Wilson? When Joe Wilson was the flavor of the month in the BUSH LIED!!! meme, John Kerry couldn’t get enough of Joe Wilson…in fact, John Kerry’s campaign paid for a website called RestoreHonesty.com, a website dedicated to Joe Wilson and his theories about President Bush and the reasons for liberating Iraq. At the bottom of the website, you can see this:

    Paid for by John Kerry for President, Inc.

  26. Also, this friend of my cousin went to school with Joe Wilson, and he used to eat his boogers.

    NeoconTool

  27. am I alone in thinking that the whole affair is really much ado about nothing (or too much ado about little)?

    No. The thing is, over the past 5 years, this is the only trumped up scandal that the liberal media has even come close to sticking on the Bush administration.

    Its pretty thin gruel, especially compared to the rollicking Clinton years. By this point of Clinton’s reign, we had Vince Foster, magic disappearing billing records, Whitewater, a display of incredible cattle future trading acumen, who knows how many bimbos and sexual assaults, Buddhist temple fundraisers, Loral selling missile technology to the ChiComs, Ron Brown taking a header on a trade mission . . . .

    Good times, good times.

  28. Hey, don’t be dissin’ my main TV theme song composer Mike Post for “Believe It or Not”. The guy came up with great theme songs for Magnum, P.I., The A-Team, Hill Street Blues, and that classic, The Rockford Files.

  29. RC Dean didn’t mention my favorite–playin’ musical battleships in the Taiwan Strait in response to campaign contributions from Taiwanese democrats and the People’s Liberation Army.

    …Amidst all those wonderful memories, as I recall, Dick Morris had to resign over a prostitute. Surely this is more serious than that.

  30. “The thing is, over the past 5 years, this is the only trumped up scandal that the liberal media has even come close to sticking on the Bush administration.”

    Yeah, the whole “lied to get us into a war” thing isn’t getting any traction at all. (Bush’s “honest and forthright” numbers are down to 42% in the latest poll, the lowest of his presidency).

  31. I like what Jon Stewart said about this last night…(paraphrasing)

    “With things looking so badly for Karl Rove the Bush administration has one big question to answer…What honor do we bestow on this guy?”

    “After all George ‘slam dunk’ Tenent got the Medal of Freedom and Condi ‘mushroom cloud’ Rice was promoted to Secretary of State, so there’s only one answer, Supreme Court Justice Rove.”

  32. Actually, I think this is a HUGE opportunity for Rove unless jail time is a significant risk.

    If I understand correctly, his whole purpose in life has been to bring a new era of Republican dominance to the U.S. and his main vehicle has been GW Bush. Wasn’t he intending to retire after this administration ended?

    He pretty much achieved what he wanted and doesn’t have much to lose. Engineering a way to “sacrifice” himself to give the party a final boost would be a brilliant and artistic end to a campaign strategist’s career.

  33. I bet GW nominates himself for the supreme court

  34. Its pretty thin gruel, especially compared to the rollicking Clinton years. By this point of Clinton’s reign, we had Vince Foster, magic disappearing billing records, Whitewater, a display of incredible cattle future trading acumen, who knows how many bimbos and sexual assaults, Buddhist temple fundraisers, Loral selling missile technology to the ChiComs, Ron Brown taking a header on a trade mission . . . .

    Overall, I’d rather have all that than the Iraq War. Not that I think Bush did anything impeachable in getting us into that, but it was sure as hell a horrible decision.

  35. Vince Foster vs. Charles Graner

    magical disappearing billing records vs. magical disappearing ghost detainees

    Whitewater vs. fixing intelligence

    a display of incredible cattle future trading acumen vs. multiple bailouts from bankruptcy by daddy’s friends

    who knows how many bimbos and sexual assaults vs. who knows how many Iraqi and Afghan civilians dead

    Buddhist temple fundraisers vs. calling a decorated war hero with shrapnel in his ass a coward

    Loral selling missile technology to the ChiComs vs. the POTUS referring to the ethnic cleansing of the Uighurs as “part of the war on terror”

    Ron Brown taking a header on a trade mission vs. Paul Wellstone “taking a header” on a campaign swing

  36. joe and RC Dean

    So it looks like both of you get it–the bastards in the Bush Administration twist the truth like so much taffy, just like the Clinton Administration did. The stakes may be higher at one time or another, but, generally speaking, they were both full of shit at any given time.

    …So why do you both seem to be so quick to go to bat for one side or the other? …Do you guys think of yourselves respectively as a Democrat and a Republican, tryin’ to appeal to libertarians? …or do you think of yourselves as a left-leaning and right-leaning libertarians, respectively?

    …just out of curiosity.

  37. Tom, I don’t see any equivalency in any of the comparisons I provided.

  38. I agree that the whole thing is mostly meaningless. What gets me, is the degree of hypocrisy. This is exactly the sort of thing that if it had happened in a Democratic administration, Republicans would be screaming for the death penalty. Personally, I do think Rove is guilty of treason and deserves to be stood up in front of a wall, just not for this. Even if he gets jail time he’ll still wind up with his own talk show.

  39. I always thought Scarbury’s theme from “Hardcastle and McCormick” was a better song.

  40. AJA:

    what was that – “drive! put it to the floor/ til the engine screams”…

    yeah – “you’re on a hard road/ and nobody cares/ if you hit the breaks”…

    what kind of car was that in the show?

  41. Joe: Oh, I get it now–Republican=Evil; Democrat=Good. I guess we can just shut this website down as unnecessary, can’t we?

  42. I have read comments here that the Niger Uranium never happened but it was the British who made the claim and they are still sticking by the report…and as i remember it Bush, in the state of the union, said it was a British report.

    I guess i am still wondering if Iraq did or did not persue uranium. The democrats say he didn’t the replicans say nothing and the british say yes. Anyone have anything else as evidance for or against the Iraq Niger uraniam deal….

    By the way isn’t this the important thing? I mean if Iraq did persue it that could be very important.
    Why is the media focusing on who said what, when they should be looking at if Iraq was or was not trying to get uranium.

  43. joe,

    You agree that the Bush Administration was full of crap in the run-up to the Iraq War, right? I’m not saying that any given Clinton Administration policy was bogus per se, but surely you agree that, in its dealing with the American people, the Clinton Administration was full of crap too, no?

    …I mean, using Buddhist temple fundraisers to funnel campaign contributions from the People’s Revolutionary Army is bullshit. …And so is calling a decorated war hero with shrapnel in his ass a coward. …But Support for NAFTA, GATT or steel tariffs is something else entirely.

    I guess what I’m tryin’ to say–and I’m not communicating it very well–is that there’s party affiliation and then there’s policy affiliation. I’ve watched you and RC Dean go back and forth on matters of party affiliation for a long time, but I’m not sure you guys are very far apart on core policy affiliation, are you?

    I doubt RC Dean thinks that America should engage in senseless wars. I doubt that you believe that government spending is the solution to whatever economic problem. Libertarians can debate about whether or not any particular war is senseless or whether tax cuts are better than deficits, but what’s the point of enthusiastically defending any particular administration or party from the charge of bullshit?

    …Especially the last two Administrations, which have been so full of crap!

    P.S. Just for clarity, you know Tom Crick is Ken S., right?

  44. drf –

    It was “The Coyote”.

    Check it out:

    http://www.angelfire.com/tv2/coyote/

    “You’ve got to think fast, keep it in gear
    One slip’s all it takes.”

  45. Thanks AJA! damn. it’s been about 20 years since i last thought about that show! amazing! very cool!

    Tom/ Ken Schulz – from the name, i had thought you were, at first, another GG clone. awesome.

  46. I never thought I could feel so free-hee-hee…

  47. No, Ron. Evil=Evil. Good=Good. It’s not my fault that the Republicans keep setting new records for the former, with the Democrats manage to retain a more prudent balance. And I’m not going to pretend both sides are equivalent, when they are not.

    I did not know that, Tom/Ken. Why do you do that?

  48. I did not know that, Tom/Ken. Why do you do that?

    …To make it short, cyberstalking exgirlfriends.

  49. Tom and joe,

    Can you both agree that becouse of Bush’s alleged crap that now Suddam Hussain and his brutal regime is out of power?

    And becouse of CLinton’s alleged crap nothing really happened…well nothing good anyway.

    😮

  50. No, Joshua, I cannot. If Bush had chosen to deal honestly with the American people, he could have toppled Hussein, and likely would have been able to do so in a manner that resulted in less bloodshed and a greater chance of a decent, safe, non-tyrranized Iraq emerging.

    You hawks keep harping on how dangerous it is that the public might lose its resolve in this “clash of wills.” Gee, do you think that handing every American who turns wobbly the easy “I was lied to” excuse might make that more likely to happen?

  51. Anyone have anything else as evidance for or against the Iraq Niger uraniam deal….

    Well, I understand somebody named Joe Wilson was able to get some confirmation that the Saddamites were asking around after uranium, but probably never actually got any.

  52. “Can you both agree that becouse of Bush’s alleged crap that now Suddam Hussain and his brutal regime is out of power?”

    From where I’m sitting I don’t think we know who is “in power”. Is it obvious to you?

    And if you mean “Saddam Hussein and his brutal regime” aren’t you talking about somewhere on the order of 50,000-100,000+ individuals? From the looks of things, they aren’t all snacking on Doritos.

  53. Just to illustrate the whole Mars v. Venus thing:

    a display of incredible cattle future trading acumen vs. multiple bailouts from bankruptcy by daddy’s friends

    The former was a bucket shop operation to launder a payoff if I ever saw one, the latter is perfectly legal.

    who knows how many bimbos and sexual assaults vs. who knows how many Iraqi and Afghan civilians dead

    You lost me here, joe. Are you counting Iraqi and Afghani civilians killed on Clinton’s watch, or on Bush’s? What would the comparative body count be, anyway?

    Buddhist temple fundraisers vs. calling a decorated war hero with shrapnel in his ass a coward

    The former was a violation of campaign finance and tax exempt status law, the latter an expression of opinion.

    Loral selling missile technology to the ChiComs vs. the POTUS referring to the ethnic cleansing of the Uighurs as “part of the war on terror”

    The former significantly altered the strategic situation in favor of the Communists; the latter changed nothing.

    Ron Brown taking a header on a trade mission vs. Paul Wellstone “taking a header” on a campaign swing

    Seeing as these were both Democrats, what’s your point, joe? Surely you’re not donning the tinfoil and accusing the Republicans of shooting down Wellstone’s plane? And what does Wellstone’s death have to do with the Bush White House anyway?

  54. In addition to the Intelligence Identities Protection act, the Rove leak is in direct violation of section 802 of the Patriot Act

    SEC. 802. DEFINITION OF DOMESTIC TERRORISM.

    (a) DOMESTIC TERRORISM DEFINED- Section 2331 of title 18, United States Code, is amended–

    (1) in paragraph (1)(B)(iii), by striking `by assassination or kidnapping’ and inserting `by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping’;

    (2) in paragraph (3), by striking `and’;

    (3) in paragraph (4), by striking the period at the end and inserting `; and’; and

    (4) by adding at the end the following:

    `(5) the term `domestic terrorism’ means activities that–

    `(A) involve acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States or of any State;

    `(B) appear to be intended–

    `(i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population;

    `(ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or

    `(iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and

    `(C) occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.’.

    (b) CONFORMING AMENDMENT- Section 3077(1) of title 18, United States Code, is amended to read as follows:

    `(1) `act of terrorism’ means an act of domestic or international terrorism as defined in section 2331;’.

    so sorry the bushvicks are such traitors and domestic terrorists 🙁 …

  55. I got a kick out of the show – my favourite episode being when Ralph touched radioactive rods & gained the ability to control other people. The power went to his head & he ‘made’ Connie Sellecca clean the stove & make him a sandwich – shows how corrosive power can be.

    Was there ever a “final” episode that explained who the aliens were & why they gave super powered suits to Ralph & the previous guy in the wheelchair. Kinda curious now that the show’s been brought up again, so if anyone knows that’s looking at this, please let me know & satisfy 22 years of unrequited curiosity.

  56. tarylcabot,

    Just go to tvtome.com

    Joshua Corning,

    I’m pretty sure if we invaded Zimbabwe we could get rid of Mugabe. Merely getting rid of a dictator isn’t enough reason to go to war.

    joe (Democrat) & R.C. Dean (Republican),

    Clinton and Bush are scumbags; get over it.

  57. Hakluyt: Good suggestion. Here’s what TVtome had to say:

    “A young Chinese scientist has invented a deadly particle “ray gun” weapon. A local gang kidnaps his uncle, hoping to obtain the gun. Bill’s plan to save the Uncle backfires, and Ralph must test his suit against the deadly ray.”

    So I guess no “Final” episode ever aired. Did read on IMDB that there were 4 episodes never aired, so maybe they’re on the DVD’s. Guess I could always put them on my Netflix list if I get really obsessed with finding out.

  58. Given today’a revelations about this (the fact that Rove’s source for the Plame info was a journalist), and also the fact that even revealing the name of Plame doesn’t violate the act since she hasn’t been covert in the last 5 years, it looks like evil genius Rove is playing the Dems again. Strumming them like a damn guitar.

    You have to respect the evil genius. I for one welcome our new overlord.

  59. Actually, Don, Novak asked Rove to confirm the story, and Rove confirmed it for him. I don’t think that gets him off the hook.

  60. Mynack,

    Rove isn’t that good; I mean, he’s now helped established the weakest President we’ve had since Carter’s last two years as President.

  61. Seriously, what happens when you realize you’ve been a lame duck for two years, and you still have 18 months to go?

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