"You're a funny man, Sully ...

that's why I'm going to kill you last."


Thursday, July 21, 2005

If more people adopted, we might have fewer abortions.
If Sullivan has any honesty left, he’ll publish one of the angry emails he’s probably already getting from birthmothers. Market forces do not apply here like you think they would. Trust us. We know this.

posted by Sully 7/21/2005 12:36:00 AM


Sullivan is surprised by this? There were signs while the Provisional Government was in place that this was going to happen. We tried to Google for what we remembered reading, but then we found this Time piece from just before the fall of Baghdad:
Detractors warn that a rush to embrace Israel would be the kiss of death for any new Iraqi administration. After all, Saddam’s own propaganda has been based on telling Iraqis they’re being invaded in the interests of Israel’s security. Even without Saddam, there’s no reason to expect that Iraqis’ view of Israel would be substantially different from that which prevails in the rest of the Arab world.
So, Andrew, you can’t say you weren’t warned on this one either.

QUICK UPDATE: And, for once, it looks like the neocons weren’t able to twist arms on this one, either.
The U.S. Administration plans to insist that the new government, when it is established, be representative, refrain from belligerence and obey international conventions, but there will be no demand that the new rulers of Iraq join the circle of rapprochement with Israel.

Last week, a few hours before the missiles began to fall on Baghdad, Marc Grossman, under secretary of state for political affairs, whose name has already been mentioned as one of the candidates to take charge of the rebuilding of Iraq, was asked about this. “Will recognizing Israel be the first thing the Iraqis do? I have no idea, but I certainly hope this will be among the first things they do.”


Grossman’s hope has no basis at the moment. The Americans are not planning to ask Iraq at the end of the American military government to recognize Israel or to establish diplomatic relations with it. There will not even be a demand to declare a situation of nonbelligerency.

“The most important thing at the moment is to remove Iraq from the circle of threat to Israel, and after the era of Saddam, it will no longer be a threat. The United States will demand disarmament, and will ensure that it takes place,” says Edward (Ned) Walker, who was the assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs, as well as an ambassador to Israel and to Egypt.


Needless to say, in Iraq anti-Israel feelings are stronger than in Afghanistan, and the Americans believe that only a long process of change in public attitudes will lead to a thawing of “the new Iraq” toward Israel. At present, Iraq has the most centralized media in the Arab world, and the level of anti-Israel propaganda absorbed by the public is enormous. Change cannot come about quickly.
OK, Charles Johnson, let’s hear you and your trolls bitch about this one. Playing catchup after two years really sucks, but if you don’t play you forfeit any chance of winning.

posted by Sully 7/21/2005 12:17:00 AM

Tuesday, July 19, 2005


P O’Neill tells Sully to calm down already about the late Edward Heath’s possible sexuality.
Please. Sometimes a bachelor is just a bachelor, or at least chooses to show just that side of his persona to the public. Ted asked for privacy, and never took actions to endanger it. And it’s not so long since Sullivan’s last broadside on this issue, the alleged media reluctance to out Prince Albert of Monaco as gay, as he had to be as a bachelor, right? In fact, as we noted in connection with Ted Heath’s successor as PM, Wilson, there’s a much bigger media taboo about mental illness of politicians than sexual orientation.
Don’t you just love it when people pick up on your ideas? (See first link). In fact, isn’t that the sort of thing Sullivan might have said, back in the day?

posted by Sully 7/19/2005 01:16:00 AM

But this is surely finesse worthy of the 42d president, not the official version of the 43d.
While we find this use of “official” an encouraging sign, Sullivan still has a ways to go before he admits that he was bamboozled by Bush from the very beginning, before Abu Ghraib, before 9/11.

It’s a little hard to be credible claiming Bush and his administration have somehow become like Clinton’s purportedly was when you’ve been immortalized on the Internet forever smiling approvingly on Bush’s (not his administration mind you, the man himself) feeding the public a line to get policy through (see blogroll).

posted by Sully 7/19/2005 12:48:00 AM

Cho, a formerly hilarious comedian, is now a bore.

posted by Sully 7/19/2005 12:47:00 AM

Sunday, July 17, 2005


When we read Tierney’s column yesterday over breakfast, we got angry as we haven’t in a long time. No, Tierney could hardly have been expected to do something other than what he did, but the way he did it ... spewing lies, inaccuracies and spinpoints so willy-nilly as to defeat all pretense that he really doesn’t know better, topped off with that sort of smug Big-Media this-is-the-truth-regardless-of-the-facts attitude that keeps people blogging.

That got our blood up. We really thought about going online and critiquing it. However, since he isn’t our bailiwick, we decided someone else would (and, indeed, Quiddity Quack at least mentioned it).

So we were bowled over when Sullivan flacked it. Honestly, can he really believe this many talking points? This is so 2002 of him.

And, of course, it gives us the opportunity (despite well-intended warnings from the heights of the liberal blogosphere) to go through Tierney’s singularly meatheaded piece point-by-point and fisk it to smithereens that we so desperately wanted to take yesterday morning.

After setting out the facts of the case agreeably enough, he gets to the first spin-point:
But because of several exceptions in the 1982 law forbidding disclosure of a covert operative's identity, virtually no one thinks anymore that he violated it.
For “virtually no one,” read “virtually no one in the favored Washington punditariat.” Fitzgerald wouldn’t have pursued it this far if he thought the loopholes covered it.

And it’s interesting that Tierney doesn’t go into detail about which, if any, exemptions from the Intelligence Identities Protection Act let Rove off the hook.

Because none of them do. You can see them yourself here. Rove isn’t a journalist (a case-law exception that may have saved Novak’s ass at first), isn’t a covert agent who disclosed his own identity (as far as we know), and didn’t disclose it to either of the Congressional oversight committees.

That leaves (a), the “it was already out there” exception, which Rove and his lawyer have been clinging to as their saving hope, judging from the latter’s public discourse on the affair.

But part of the “affirmative measures” the law refers to is that persons with security clearances (Rove has one) will themselves take affirmative measures to make sure this is something they can discuss before they discuss it with journalists. The fact that Cooper may have brought it up to Rove for confirmation doesn’t let him off the hook, as this Agonist post points out (thanks Atrios!)

Then, Tierney says:
The law doesn’t seem to apply to Ms. Wilson because she apparently hadn’t been posted abroad during the five previous years.
Huh? The statute itself says nothing about covert agents having been posted abroad, or five years (and one might consider that her cover, even if it was nominally a cushy job in a DC-area office park, frequently had her traveling abroad). That the CIA itself had continued to maintain her cover is all that matters.

Nor does it matter in the slightest that she worked at CIA headquarters, or how she’s acted since. The IIPA does not recognize sour grapes as a defense.

As for the Senate Intelligence Committee Report, as reported elsewhere (link to come) it only was able to characterize Wilson’s report that way by twisting mightily, and even on one page conceded his basic point: that Iraq was not acquiring uranium from Niger, nor had it even tried. Again, Tierney is pretty much passing on misinformation deliberately.
Karl Rove’s version of events now looks less like a smear and more like the truth: Mr. Wilson’s investigation, far from being requested and then suppressed by a White House afraid of its contents, was a low-level report of not much interest to anyone outside the Wilson household.
Just what does that school of red herrings have to do with anything? Hey ... Rove, or Bolton someone else who had access to this information, broke the law and the terms of their security clearance by spilling the beans. Wilson could have submitted several hundred pages of absurdist poetry for all the difference that makes. Rove or whoever still wouldn’t have been allowed to blow Valerie Plame’s cover (and by extension that of all her Brewster-Jennings coworkers, who were likely NOCs as well).
Well, there’s always the chance that the prosecutor will turn up evidence of perjury or obstruction of justice during the investigation, which would just prove once again that the easiest way to uncover corruption in Washington is to create it yourself by investigating nonexistent crimes
Boy, is this ever an example of the tortured Washington morality conservatives want to change! As if people can’t help but lie under oath and destroy evidence when the prosecutor comes calling with a fistful of subpoenas! Bad Pat Fitzgerald! He should know better!

What, pray tell what, would the Mighty Wurlitzer have done if one of Bill Clinton’s defenders had tried to get away with saying something like this? Tierney really better spend some time thinking whether some sort of ass-backwards sense of ethics like this is what he wants to be remembered for (then again, he does work at the New York Times and has all his life).

The “nada” here is this column. And in Tierney’s skull.

posted by Sully 7/17/2005 06:42:00 PM

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Excerpts from Lee Siegel's 2001 Harper's piece

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"The Princess of Provincetown"

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Sullivan urges the Bush Administration to lie to the public

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