Tripp gets her pay-off
November 4, 2003 6:19 AM   Subscribe

Hey, Linda. Thanks for all you've done! Linda Tripp gets a $600K settlement from Bush's Defense Department for having her privacy violated. Oh, sickening irony. via TPM
posted by jpoulos (63 comments total)
 
Either corruption is becoming fashionable, or the emperor has all his clothes.
posted by the fire you left me at 6:31 AM on November 4, 2003


Here's hoping her legal bills are as phat as her neck
posted by BentPenguin at 6:32 AM on November 4, 2003


Bent, there's so much wrong with Linda Tripp that you really don't need to stoop down to attacking someone's physical appearence.

Personally, I think there should be a class-action lawsuit against here for her part in making half the country go legally retarded.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:35 AM on November 4, 2003


Against her. Not here. Metafilter warns well in advance of the damage it does to your mind.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:35 AM on November 4, 2003


Just as long as she dosen't do a Paula Jones and pose nude.

*shudder*
posted by jonmc at 6:41 AM on November 4, 2003


my, what pleasant news to wake up to. *retch*
posted by whatnot at 6:43 AM on November 4, 2003


Why settle?
posted by magullo at 6:45 AM on November 4, 2003


Linda Tripp: Champion for Privacy!
posted by Dick Paris at 6:46 AM on November 4, 2003


Let's see, she was a Public Affairs Specialist for the DoD?
Yeah, that seems about right.
posted by ahimsakid at 6:53 AM on November 4, 2003


And I thought irony was dead. *shakes head sadly*
posted by junkbox at 6:57 AM on November 4, 2003


And I thought irony was dead. *shakes head sadly*

Irony is quite alive.
posted by machaus at 7:01 AM on November 4, 2003


I home someone is writing all this down somewhere.
posted by CrazyJub at 7:01 AM on November 4, 2003


Hopefully this will be balanced with a lengthly jail term for illegal wire tap (or is DC one of the few jurisdictions that allow you to record your own phone calls?)
posted by substrate at 7:03 AM on November 4, 2003


Wow. Now who's going to question which team is winning, here?

No wonder people are willing to support the GOP.
Awesome (fly in the face of sanity) perks.
posted by Busithoth at 7:08 AM on November 4, 2003


She lived in Maryland at the time, but the prosecuter there dropped the wire tap charges.
posted by machaus at 7:08 AM on November 4, 2003


You don't like her = she's not allowed to sue the government? If they violated her privacy, she's entitled to sue for damages. Even conniving, traitorous bitches without shame or honor are allowed recourse under the law.
posted by UncleFes at 7:24 AM on November 4, 2003


Tripp sued the government when Pentagon officials leaked information from the government background investigation about her, which included the fact that she was arrested as a juvenile in a case involving drinking alcohol; she was never charged.

So the government clearly violated an employee's privacy and the Privacy Act by leaking personal information about her. And the MetaFilter liberal cabal is mad that the employee received a settlement for that infringement?

Ask yourself this: If this were any other federal employee, where would your sympathies lie? Is your claim that it's fair to treat Linda Tripp differently than any other employee because of her role in this scandal? You realize if that's your claim, then you're taking the position that any federal employee who is involved in any sort of political scandal should expect to have their private records leaked? Maybe you're comfortable with that. I'm not.
posted by pardonyou? at 7:26 AM on November 4, 2003


(or, what UncleFes said. Just in a more concise form).
posted by pardonyou? at 7:28 AM on November 4, 2003


Its NewsFilter day... front page of mefi looks a lot like the front page of CNN

While it maybe legally and ethically sound that Tripp receives this settlement, you have to agree its pretty hard to stomach it considering her past and her actions. I know she is on my "people that should have been kicked out of the country" list.
posted by cmicali at 7:46 AM on November 4, 2003


You realize if that's your claim, then you're taking the position that any federal employee who is involved in any sort of political scandal should expect to have their private records leaked?

I did ask "why settle?"

Also - do you agree with " the government agreed to retroactively give Tripp three annual outstanding performance evaluations for her work at the Department of Defense, increasing the value of her retirement" as part of that settlement. What is the message being sent out here?
posted by magullo at 7:49 AM on November 4, 2003


You do realize that this enormously scandalous thing that was leaked by the Pentagon was that she was caught drinking as a minor. Oh heavens! I never heard anything about this at the time, nor would I expect to; it's boring.

And for this incredibly damaging leak she gets paid $600K. Of your tax dollars. And some people have the guile to defend her?
posted by fungible at 7:49 AM on November 4, 2003


If this were any other federal employee, where would your sympathies lie?

I think the Valerie Plame incident proves that most of this country supports reprecussions for the government illegally disclosing information about its employees.

Of course, I'm sure you see the slight additional oddity in that Valerie Plame didn't, you know, become famous and stuff by doing, and taking pride in, virtually the same thing she would then sue the government for.

The hypocrisy that Linda Tripp has won a settlement for privacy invasion after orchestrating one of the most famous invasions of privacy in history should be obvious to, ahem, even those desperate to spin this into another whine about how dem damn Dems are soooo unfair.

(or, what cmicali said. Just in a more concise form).
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:50 AM on November 4, 2003


Maybe you're comfortable with that. I'm not.

I'm not either. I'm willing to settle for her being loathed by millions. I'll just be happy if Valerie Plame winds up getting remotely as good a deal.
posted by furiousthought at 7:55 AM on November 4, 2003


And some people have the guile to defend her?

Opposed vigorously by those champions of "recourse to the law for people we like."
posted by UncleFes at 7:56 AM on November 4, 2003


On the topic of poetic injustice, however? Conceeded. I don't think anyone here misses the shamefullness of it.
posted by UncleFes at 7:58 AM on November 4, 2003


The hypocrisy that Linda Tripp has won a settlement for privacy invasion after orchestrating one of the most famous invasions of privacy in history should be obvious to, ahem, even those desperate to spin this into another whine about how dem damn Dems are soooo unfair.

Oh, is that what I'm doing? Strange that I did not think the impeachment of Clinton was a good thing (hey -- I was a very, very early member of moveon.org -- how's that for irony?), and I've never voted for a Republican for national office. But it's nice to know you know me better than I know myself (note I did not say Democrats, I said liberals -- the latter is just a subset of the former, not coextensive).

I will agree that the Tripp situation is dripping with irony. But my question still stands: Does that mean she loses the protection of the law?

Finally, re: the Wilson/Plame affair. Here's what I wrote on July 23, shortly after the story broke:

I saw Wilson interviewed on the Today show yesterday. You have to parse the partisan politics a bit, but it's pretty clear that someone told Novak something they shouldn't have....Whether or not it was illegal, it was just plain stupid. This administration appears to have no concept of how slimy and underhanded this stuff appears to the average American.

Anything else, XQUZYPHER?
posted by pardonyou? at 8:09 AM on November 4, 2003


FWIW, I did not mean to imply (with the FPP) that Tripp should not be allowed to sue. My point is mainly that this is supremely ironic.

Note, however, this was a settlement, not a judgement in her favor. It was a political decision (in the strictest sense of the word, not necessarily the Dem vs. GOP sense), not a legal one, to give her the money.
posted by jpoulos at 8:23 AM on November 4, 2003


You don't like her = she's not allowed to sue the government? If they violated her privacy, she's entitled to sue for damages. Even conniving, traitorous bitches without shame or honor are allowed recourse under the law.

I agree, but I'd hate to be her when the karma bill comes due.
posted by whatever at 8:25 AM on November 4, 2003


Gosh, you mean the government actually invaded someone's privacy BEFORE Ashcroft became attorney general or the Patriot Act was enacted....and during a Democratic administration too? How shocking!!!

By the way, a lot of people think that Linda Tripp is a national heroine for getting the goods to expose Clinton as a liar. Don't tell me that a lot of you guys wouldn't cheer if a left-wing Linda Tripp-type activist similarly exposed Bush. I bet you would put her on a postage stamp.
posted by Durwood at 8:44 AM on November 4, 2003


Yeah, but we'd have to wait until the Bush administration had her secretly killed.
posted by Cyrano at 8:47 AM on November 4, 2003


And the MetaFilter liberal cabal is mad that the employee received a settlement for that infringement?

The so-called "liberal cabal" is pointing out the irony of the fact that Linda Tripp violated both Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky's privacy by illegally wiretapping Monica's phone, and yet Linda is seeking damages for the DoD violating her privacy.

If you don't get it, you don't get it.
posted by terrapin at 8:51 AM on November 4, 2003


. Don't tell me that a lot of you guys wouldn't cheer if a left-wing Linda Tripp-type activist similarly exposed Bush.

Not over a blowjob. I swear on the Complete Writings of Noam Chomsky, not over a blowjob.
posted by jpoulos at 9:23 AM on November 4, 2003


Maybe not you, jpoulos, but I get the feeling that plenty of people would, cause that's what seems to matter in politics being "right" and whether your guy wins or not. Which is why I've given up on it. Well, it's among the reasons.
posted by jonmc at 10:05 AM on November 4, 2003


I will agree that the Tripp situation is dripping with irony. But my question still stands: Does that mean she loses the protection of the law?

of course not, she doesn't lose it.
but it's a little more than irony -- first she breaks the law (and violates other people's privacy) recording her best friend's confessions, a ruthlessly political prosecutor grants her immunity to use her illegally obtained evidence, and the "Get Clinton" right wing dementia finally reaches critical mass.

then she sues, and a manages to get even more money from the government (i humbly remind you that after the Lewinsky story broke she didnt go to the office anymore, getting her not so bad government paycheck anyway)

Tripp is a shameless political thug (by the way, lose the seventh grade cracks re: her appearance, guys -- these are very very lame, not to mention sexist, and make us look like Fark)

where are our "tort reform" MeFi friends when you need them?

re the "liberal cabal" thing:
I admit it: I just hope we get all invited to Bill O'Reilly's show

Not over a blowjob. I swear on the Complete Writings of Noam Chomsky, not over a blowjob.
I totally agree. What about exposing him over a little snort of cocaine between meetings? Would that make him fair game?
posted by matteo at 10:05 AM on November 4, 2003


Don't tell me that a lot of you guys wouldn't cheer if a left-wing Linda Tripp-type activist similarly exposed Bush.

Exposure? Never works with the GOP. Key figures of the Iran-Contra treason scandal hold key government positions this time around and it would be unpatriotic of you to think twice about that. I mean, treason is still more politically relevant than a blowjob. Right? RIGHT?

What about exposing him over a little snort of cocaine between meetings?

Won't work either. He'll just take another month off, this time in deluxe rehab resort, and in the meantime someone else takes over the program government. It's not like he won't come back cured.

/Still wondering why did they settle but too lazy busy to look it up
posted by magullo at 10:36 AM on November 4, 2003


Don't tell me that a lot of you guys wouldn't cheer if a left-wing Linda Tripp-type activist similarly exposed Bush. I bet you would put her on a postage stamp.

You don't have to sneak around with a tape recorder looking for dirty, shameful, horrible secrets about your friends' (gasp) sex! lives in order to expose Bush's misdeeds; his crimes and his lies about them are printed on the front page. If I cheered every time someone exposed one of his sins, my voice would be hoarse by now.
posted by Mars Saxman at 11:05 AM on November 4, 2003


Tripp is a shameless political thug (by the way, lose the seventh grade cracks re: her appearance, guys -- these are very very lame)

Someone's ghastly appearance is like implied rhyme. No one need mention it - it is felt nonetheless.
posted by the fire you left me at 11:26 AM on November 4, 2003


All of the arguing is moot, the CNN story has the facts wrong.

Tripp was arrested as an adult (not a minor) for Grand Larceny. The case was that she stole something from a guy she had met in a bar. She was charged in court with Grand Larceny but later plead guilty to a minor offence (maybe something alcohol related or related to the bar?). I think the inference was that the whole thing might have been a drunken mistake, but there was always the chance she would have been found guilty, so she took the plea bargain.

When you apply for a job at the DoD, you are asked if you have ever been arrested (not convicted) of a felony. Tripp answered "no". A Newsweek reporter found out about the arrest and asked the DoD if they knew about it. They said they had no record of any arrest.

That is what Tripp was suing over, that the DoD told a reporter that they had no record of an arrest-- this exposed Tripp as a liar and guilty of a felony for lying to the DoD. Her claim is that the DoD should not have said anything to the reporter at all. That claim might have some validity, but it's not the same thing as what the CNN article says.

(I worked for a news organization that was heavily involved in the whole mess, which is how I remember all this stuff)
posted by cell divide at 12:13 PM on November 4, 2003




if a left-wing Linda Tripp-type activist similarly exposed Bush
I cheer when almost any female exposes Bush. (There, now THAT'S 7th grade for ya)
posted by mischief at 12:56 PM on November 4, 2003


cell divide -- I don't know if this applies to Tripp's case, but as a young adult I pled guilty to a misdemeanor and was given what is called accelerated rehabilitation. It was a first offense and basically I was on probation for a year and after that I time I was legally allowed to claim that I had never been arrested. It was as if the incident never happened. However, if I were to get in trouble again, this option would not be available as it would not be a first offense. It was a long time ago. I forget the specifics, but that is the gist of it. It might also be different for federal jobs.
posted by archimago at 1:09 PM on November 4, 2003


So let me get this straight: Linda Tripp lied about her arrest record when applying for a security clearance with the DoD (Felony) about being charged with grand larceny (felony.) Later she goes on to collect illegal evidence (felony) with an illegal, warrantless wire-tap(felony.) Now the government is paying her $600,000 dollars and buttering up her retirement?

Step 1: Commit multiple felonies and invade the privacy of others for personal and political gain.

Step 2: ?

Step 3: Profit!!!
posted by elwoodwiles at 1:14 PM on November 4, 2003


Gosh, you mean the government actually invaded someone's privacy BEFORE Ashcroft became attorney general or the Patriot Act was enacted....and during a Democratic administration too? How shocking!!!

A single violation of the Privacy Act, of course, being legally identical to the PATRIOT act with equal range over an equal number of Americans.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 1:19 PM on November 4, 2003


This paragraph from the Alterman story sums it up the best:

This was the ostensible infringement of Tripp’s privacy. The government did not disclose her arrest record. The government attempted to suggest she had no arrest record. It was her step-mother who blew the whistle on her, not the government. And it was old-fashioned, factual reporting that disclosed that Tripp lied to get a top security clearance.

Notice that she's never been prosecuted for any of her crimes...and in fact, she's being rewarded for lying.
posted by dejah420 at 1:36 PM on November 4, 2003


There are a tiny handful of people in this world who, if I saw them on the street, I would walk up and spit on them. Linda, wear a raincoat if you come to my town.
posted by bicyclingfool at 1:41 PM on November 4, 2003


Good stuff from Alterman. Here's the link to Tripp's booking slip. You know, with all the difficulty folks are having in finding jobs these days, you'd think that these journalist might work a little harder at their jobs. Go figure.
posted by psmealey at 1:53 PM on November 4, 2003


Linda Tripp should be lined up and slapped. But the legal system is such that she should be allowed to sue, and win if her case has merit. Sadly, since this was a settlement, we will never know if her case had merit.
posted by moonbiter at 1:58 PM on November 4, 2003


"we will never know if her case had merit"
Sounds like this case had less merit than the case to impeach the president, actually, if you believe Alterman.

Looks like she made out like a bandit in this.
thank god for mirrors meting out justice every day

(hey, show me a goddam horror movie with a scarier character, and I'll let up)
posted by Busithoth at 2:17 PM on November 4, 2003


Alterman doesn't have it right, either. In fact, in September 2002, the Justice Department tried to limit the case to one alleged Privacy Act violation: the New Yorker piece. Tripp successfully argued that her Privacy Act claim was far broader -- including 11 other alleged violations, ranging from disclosures to the Washington Post to disclosures on Larry King.

It's also worth noting that in 2000 (i.e., during the Clinton administration) the Inspector General of the Department of Defense investigated and concluded that DOD had, indeed, violated the Privacy Act.

And for those who think this is just payoff: This case has been pending for several years. Why did they wait? And the government tried several times to get the entire case dismissed. Why would they have risked actually having the case dismissed?

I don't like Linda Tripp either, but people need to pull their heads out of their ideological asses.
posted by pardonyou? at 2:43 PM on November 4, 2003


I don't like Linda Tripp either, but people need to pull their heads out of their ideological asses.

I think you're just reading into people's opinions too much. I don't think anyone is stating anything as ideological as you're suggesting. I think the woman and all of her bullshit hypocrisy, SOMEhow coming out of all this a much wealthier person, just makes the lot of us sick. That's all.

In fact, I hope she meets with an untimely and rather torturous fatal accident.
posted by Witty at 2:55 PM on November 4, 2003


Can the taxpayers present Ken Starr a bill for the 600K?
posted by pejamo at 3:43 PM on November 4, 2003


I think the woman and all of her bullshit hypocrisy, SOMEhow coming out of all this a much wealthier person, just makes the lot of us sick. That's all.

thank you witty. now let's all slap pardonyou? for that 'metafilter liberal cabal' shit.
posted by quonsar at 5:05 PM on November 4, 2003


OMEhow coming out of all this a much wealthier person, just makes the lot of us sick.

Linda Tripp's legal bills and other expenses likely ranged well above $600,000. If she's broken even, I'd be quite surprised.
posted by Dreama at 5:22 PM on November 4, 2003


Linda Tripp's legal bills and other expenses likely ranged well above $600,000

Wasn't there a Linda Tripp Legal Defense Fund to handle that? If there weren't enough republican axe-grinders in the whole US to completely pay her legal fees, and make this lawsuit pure gravy, I'd be, as they say, quite surprised.
posted by boaz at 6:20 PM on November 4, 2003


I was under the impression that Tripp recorded the phone conversations out of fear that someone in the administration would have her injured or killed. Now why in the world would she think that?
posted by kablam at 6:58 PM on November 4, 2003


umm... because she was stupid enough to believe in that Vince Foster shit being peddled on right wing radio?
posted by psmealey at 7:25 PM on November 4, 2003


Life is good to the shameless. See Save Karyn.
posted by orange swan at 7:33 PM on November 4, 2003


now let's all slap pardonyou? for that 'metafilter liberal cabal' shit.

Slap away, but at least realize I was being hyperbolic. I don't really think there's a MetaFilter liberal cabal. It's actually more of a coterie.
posted by pardonyou? at 6:55 AM on November 5, 2003


I like to think of it more as a knitting circle.
posted by jpoulos at 7:07 AM on November 5, 2003


As of 9:28 am CST the article's gone with nary a word of retraction or 'we screwed up the facts.'
posted by moonbiter at 7:29 AM on November 5, 2003


I thought there was no cabal! You people are keeping things from me again.

*sulks*
posted by jonmc at 7:29 AM on November 5, 2003


I like to think of it more as a knitting circle.

We're really just a bunch of Madame Defarges.

Ah, la guillotine!!
posted by orange swan at 10:55 AM on November 5, 2003


As of 9:28 am CST the article's gone with nary a word of retraction or 'we screwed up the facts.'

The article was always, never written...to borrow a phrase from our dear overlord's bible, 1984.
posted by dejah420 at 11:15 AM on November 5, 2003


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