Scott McClellan was "badly misguided"
May 28, 2008 7:28 AM   Subscribe

Scott McClellan wrote a book. The former Press Secretary admits some of his answers to White House Press Corps questions were badly misguided. One section of his book accuses George W. Bush of deluding himself about his alleged cocaine use. Of course, part of the blame for the entire mess should fall on the liberal media for being "too easy on the administration during the run-up to the war...".
posted by Bathtub Bobsled (185 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
No. Just no. McClellan does not get to rehabilitate his reputation (or whatever it is he's trying to rehabilitate).
posted by psmealey at 7:42 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


People will talk about this for a week, some will make a big deal of it, some will accuse him of just trying to sell some books, and then it will die down. Too little too late.

I would have liked to have seen him up at the podium at a press conference at the White House one day when he still had the job, with a Network-esque breakdown... "...you know, I just can't do this anymore. We've really messed things up. Here's how."
posted by starman at 7:44 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


About time the GOP got a Stephanopoulos to call its own.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 7:44 AM on May 28, 2008 [5 favorites]


'The media won't let go of these ridiculous cocaine rumors,' I heard Bush say. 'You know, the truth is I honestly don't remember whether I tried it or not. We had some pretty wild parties back in the day, and I just don't remember.'

You know the cliche that Americans vote for Bush because he seems like the kind of guy that you would like to sit down and have a beer with has always confused me, because he doesn't drink, so it makes no sense. But this quote finally made me get it. People would like to have a beer with old school Bush, the Bush that still drank. This is not so much a commentary on the fact that they think that they would enjoy his company, it is just that most Americans are saying that they would like to get so incredibly fucking drunk that they would later be unable to remember whether they snorted coke or not. It makes a lot more sense in that context.
posted by ND¢ at 7:44 AM on May 28, 2008 [16 favorites]


Good use of the NoShit tag.
posted by Nattie at 7:47 AM on May 28, 2008 [4 favorites]


People will talk about this for a week

A week? That's generous. This will be forgotten tomorrow. Down the memory hole.... WHHOOOOOOSH!!!

This guy was just a pathetic, lying sack of shit. At least Ari Fleischer lied with panache, almost taunting us as he did it. McClellan used to just trot out there, tell all kinds of fairy tales and act offended when an incredulous press would follow up. He did nothing but waste all kinds of time, air and print space. He should be billed for it. That would be just.
posted by psmealey at 7:51 AM on May 28, 2008 [8 favorites]


It's amusing to watch all these former Bush supporters desperately try to distance themselves from the worst leader we've ever had. The sudden recalibration of moral compasses is heartwarming, but for a lot of dead/injured people and a lot of disastrous policy, it's too little, too late, guys.
posted by Miko at 7:52 AM on May 28, 2008 [11 favorites]


starman writes "I would have liked to have seen him up at the podium at a press conference at the White House one day when he still had the job, with a Network-esque breakdown... '...you know, I just can't do this anymore. We've really messed things up. Here's how.'"

Well, to be fair to McClellan, that would be seen not only as revelatory but highly unprofessional. His first job as press secretary is to deal with the press as the White House directs. If he comes across information which leads him to believe his bosses aren't being honest with him, then he should leave his position and speak to that outside of his professional capacity, if his conscience tells him to. I mean, I really, really don't like Bush and was just praying for a moment like you mention, but it's just not going to happen outside of a movie. You might as well pray for Bush to die of a heart attack. And to give McClellan credit, this sort of tell-all book from a former press secretary - published while his boss is still in office - is unprecedented. He may be trying to salvage his reputation or just deal with his conscience, but he runs a big risk of being blackballed.
posted by krinklyfig at 7:54 AM on May 28, 2008 [4 favorites]


Being Press Secretary is a difficult job.
posted by three blind mice at 7:55 AM on May 28, 2008


So when do the court cases begin?

We need a Constitutional Amendment that automatically puts those in office (and their spokesdroids) under oath automatically so these can be prosecuted later. Of course, there's still the pardoning problem...
posted by DU at 7:55 AM on May 28, 2008 [3 favorites]


Agreed, Miko. I'm not interested in hearing from any more of these peons until Colin Powell finally gives an account of himself. That guy sacrificed his entire reputation and career in the service of these scoundrels, I'm kind of curious what he's up to now.
posted by psmealey at 7:57 AM on May 28, 2008


This guy was just a pathetic, lying sack of shit. At least Ari Fleischer lied with panache, almost taunting us as he did it.

Whereas now we have Perino, who seems to not only not know what the truth is, but also not care.
posted by delmoi at 7:57 AM on May 28, 2008 [3 favorites]


...he runs a big risk of being blackballed.

If anything, he's risking blackballing by publishing too late.

As to the rest: Adding "professional" in front of "liar" doesn't make it OK.
posted by DU at 7:58 AM on May 28, 2008 [3 favorites]


Shirley Thissel Wendell?
posted by cavalier at 7:59 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


These are important books, and we will see a bunch more of them. But the really useful time to speak out was while it was happening -- developing your conscience later is better than not at all, but not nearly as important as someone publicly stating at the time "this is fraudulent and I cannot go along with it."
posted by Forktine at 8:00 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


You honor, you're asking whether I was trying to kill that man when I split open his head with a cleaver?

You know, the truth is I honestly don't remember whether I tried it or not. We had some pretty wild parties back in the day, and I just don't remember.
posted by blue_beetle at 8:00 AM on May 28, 2008


One more thing. I have little sympathy for McClellan, who clearly knew what he was getting into, or he should have. But, given what we went through for the last seven years, this is a step, if only one step towards undoing the damage. It won't do much, but it's better than him going on to some cushy industry PR job and keeping his mouth shut until his deathbed.
posted by krinklyfig at 8:01 AM on May 28, 2008


DU writes "As to the rest: Adding 'professional' in front of 'liar' doesn't make it OK."

You know, I really don't find these sorts of conversations very illuminating, and we generally share the same views regarding these matters. Sure, vent your spleen. Won't accomplish anything, but I bet it's therapeutic. Let me know when you're done with that so we can have a real conversation.
posted by krinklyfig at 8:08 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


"In this case, the 'liberal media' didn't live up to its reputation."

Wow, just, wow. The sheer unmitigated gall of this man .. I ... gah.

So, first, the Right comes up with a label to distract attention from the media when they probe and question the ruling elite - which is, after all, their job - by ghosting them as liberals, and therefore suspect, and their actions as politically motivated.

Then, when the media don't pursue their job of trying to keep the unfettered power of the White House in check with quite the amount of vigor that might be expected (presumably in the name of "national unity with the country on a war footing" and "not wanting to appear unpatriotic" and so on), it's not "the media not doing its job", it's not even the liberal media not doing its job, it's the liberal media not living up to its reputation.

Perhaps a more even-handed way to put it would be: "We browbeat the media into kowtowing to the Administration by questioning their patriotism, and they duly went along with it. We shouldn't have done that. We should have let them to do their job without questioning their motivations, because their doubts were legitimate."

Fuck this man, his political allies, and the Party he rode in on.
posted by kcds at 8:08 AM on May 28, 2008 [12 favorites]


It won't do much, but it's better than him going on to some cushy industry PR job and keeping his mouth shut until his deathbed.

It would have been better if he kept his mouth shut earlier and I don't care to hear him speak now.

Scotty is one of the main salesmen of the Iraq debacle. It was his face on the television. Ain't no running away from that. No book, no prosecution, no true history can undo the damage that has been done.
posted by three blind mice at 8:10 AM on May 28, 2008


Tonight's The Daily Show should be fun, fun, fun!

Stewart seemed to hunger for some kind of confession, the last time McClellan was on; I wonder if he'll return for the obligatory ass-sanding?

Nonetheless, late to the party. This is a form of the cowardice that has become institutionalized by the bushmen. Some of the war deaths are on this guy's hands.
posted by djrock3k at 8:11 AM on May 28, 2008


"I remember thinking to myself, How can that be?" McClellan wrote. "How can someone simply not remember whether or not they used an illegal substance like cocaine? It didn't make a lot of sense."

McClellan obviously did not attend the kind of parties that Bush threw back in the day.
posted by Pollomacho at 8:12 AM on May 28, 2008


Let me know when you're done with that so we can have a real conversation.

Translation: Only those who agree with the implicit assumptions of the establishment are Serious.
posted by DU at 8:14 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


"White House press secretary Dana Perino released this statement on Scott McClellan's critical book on the Bush White House:

'Scott, we now know, is disgruntled about his experience at the White House. For those of us who fully supported him, before, during and after he was press secretary, we are puzzled. It is sad -- this is not the Scott we knew.'

More from Perino: 'The book, as reported by the press, has been described to the president. I do not expect a comment from him on it -- he has more pressing matters than to spend time commenting on books by former staffers.'"*
posted by ericb at 8:16 AM on May 28, 2008


'The book, as reported by the press, has been described to the president.

Don't they describe books to him every night before bedtime?
posted by psmealey at 8:18 AM on May 28, 2008 [13 favorites]


DU writes "Translation: Only those who agree with the implicit assumptions of the establishment are Serious."

Oh, come on. You're talking to me like I'm a Republican, and I'm afraid you're way, way off track there. But this is what I mean.
posted by krinklyfig at 8:19 AM on May 28, 2008


Of course, part of the blame for the entire mess should fall on the liberal media for being "too easy on the administration during the run-up to the war...".

Network anchors differ on Iraq war coverage: "In wake of ex-White House aide’s new book, trio debate media’s role."
posted by ericb at 8:19 AM on May 28, 2008


You're talking to me like I'm a Republican, and I'm afraid you're way, way off track there.

That's because you are talking like a Republican. It's OK to lie if that's your job? What? Since when (in the human world) did business needs trump ethics?
posted by DU at 8:21 AM on May 28, 2008


"Bush, similarly, has a way of falling back on the hazy memory to protect himself from potential political embarrassment,"

10 years from now:

Bush's mind: I can't believe that Clinton got us into that war in Iraq, that man should be put in jail. And Kerry's mishandling of New Orleans after the hurricane? Terrible. Thank God I had nothing to do with any of this, I can sleep tonight knowing my legacy is preserved!
posted by quin at 8:21 AM on May 28, 2008 [5 favorites]


“The news of Scott McClellan’s new book on President Bush -- first reported by the Politico’s Mike Allen -- guarantees one thing: There is NO CHANCE Bush fixes his perception problems in the public and the media anytime soon. He's a political pariah, pure and simple. In the book, according to reports, McClellan says that Bush ‘was not open and forthright on Iraq’; that the president sold the war through a ‘political propaganda campaign’; that he took a permanent campaign approach to governing; and that the White House mishandled Hurricane Katrina, both governmentally and politically. For McCain, the timing of the news of this book couldn’t have been worse. On the very day that the Arizona senator broke with Bush on nuclear proliferation, he not only held a closed-press fundraiser with the president (that produced just one photo-op), but also came news of the McClellan book. Now will come constant cable news chatter about the book, an interview with McClellan himself tomorrow on TODAY, as well as the inevitable questions from the traveling press corps following McCain… Meanwhile, Bush today hits two more fundraisers (in Salt Lake City and Park City, UT) for McCain and the RNC; Romney joins the president at these events.”*
posted by ericb at 8:22 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


This memoir is what is known in the world of politics as "rubbing the public's face in feces."
posted by Dave Faris at 8:22 AM on May 28, 2008


I find it hard to articulate how disgusted I am with this cowardly self-serving sniveling little pig of a man. I respect him far less for disagreeing with the administration's idiocy yet still acting as cheerleader-in-chief for them than if he had actually been a true believer. Way to do this now, when it will make no difference whatsoever to the multitude of dead and crippled, you quivering fucking lickspittle. I don't think he even has any beliefs either way. He was all rah-rah for Bush when he thought it would serve him to be so, and he tries to distance himself from Bush now that he thinks it will serve him to do so. Plus he gets to make a few bucks hawking his book. A small consolation is that he will go down in history as yet another insignificant spineless bootlick of the sort history is littered with, another footnote of another failed and oppressive ideology, instead of the heroic whistleblower he'd probably like to imagine himself as.

Of course, part of the blame for the entire mess should fall on the liberal media for being "too easy on the administration during the run-up to the war...".

I guess old habits die hard, huh? This just proves that he's no different now. He's following the same playbook, only in service of his own selfish interests instead of in service of Bush.
posted by DecemberBoy at 8:25 AM on May 28, 2008 [7 favorites]


Mr. Dryden: A man who tells lies, like me, merely hides the truth. But a man who tells half-lies has forgotten where he put it.
posted by sciurus at 8:27 AM on May 28, 2008


In Iraq, McClellan added, Bush saw "his opportunity to create a legacy of greatness," something McClellan said Bush has said he believes is only available to wartime presidents.
I thought Bush didn't care about what the history books or others thought of his legacy?
The president's real motivation for the war, he said, was to transform the Middle East to ensure an enduring peace in the region. But the White House effort to sell the war as necessary due to the stated threat posed by Saddam Hussein was needed because "Bush and his advisers knew that the American people would almost certainly not support a war launched primarily for the ambitions purpose of transforming the Middle East," McClellan wrote.

"Rather than open this Pandora's Box, the administration chose a different path — not employing out-and-out deception, but shading the truth," he wrote of the effort to convince the world that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction, an effort he said used "innuendo and implication" and "intentional ignoring of intelligence to the contrary."

"President Bush managed the crisis in a way that almost guaranteed that the use of force would become the only feasible option," McClellan concluded...
I'm sorry, but if shading the truth is not out-and-out deception then it is has got to be at least out deception.
posted by furtive at 8:30 AM on May 28, 2008


... until Colin Powell finally gives an account of himself. That guy sacrificed his entire reputation and career in the service of these scoundrels, I'm kind of curious what he's up to now.

Powell tried to talk Bush out of war
“The former American secretary of state Colin Powell has revealed that he spent 2½ hours vainly trying to persuade President George W. Bush not to invade Iraq and believes today’s conflict cannot be resolved by US forces.

‘I tried to avoid this war,’ Powell said at the Aspen Ideas Festival in Colorado [transcript | PDF]. ‘I took him through the consequences of going into an Arab country and becoming the occupiers.’

Powell has become increasingly outspoken about the level of violence in Iraq, which he believes is in a state of civil war. ‘The civil war will ultimately be resolved by a test of arms,’ he said. ‘It’s not going to be pretty to watch, but I don’t know any way to avoid it. It is happening now.’

He added: ‘It is not a civil war that can be put down or solved by the armed forces of the United States.’ All the military could do, Powell suggested, was put ‘a heavier lid on this pot of boiling sectarian stew.’”

posted by ericb at 8:30 AM on May 28, 2008 [5 favorites]


I'm looking forward to how Dana Perino answers the questions that will fall naturally out of this book.
posted by grouse at 8:33 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


DU writes "That's because you are talking like a Republican. It's OK to lie if that's your job? What? Since when (in the human world) did business needs trump ethics?"

Look, I don't want to get too far afield here, but it's possible to have differences of opinion without screaming at each other or throwing out personal accusations. At least I would hope so. If not, then sorry for making assumptions, and I'll just drop it altogether. No point in expending energy on such silliness.
posted by krinklyfig at 8:34 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


"You know, the truth is I honestly don't remember whether I tried it or not. We had some pretty wild parties back in the day, and I just don't remember."


He does remember he liked the way it smelled (rimshot).
posted by stifford at 8:35 AM on May 28, 2008


I thought Bush didn't care about what the history books or others thought of his legacy?

You have that in reverse. Bush doesn't care what people today think about him, only that the history books remember him as great. Odd for a guy that doesn't like to read. Scary when you think that a reasonable interpretation of that passage is that he set out to get us into that war, ONLY so that he could become "great".

A bit like the Martin Sheen character in "the Dead Zone", but at least Bush hasn't blown up the world. Yet.
posted by psmealey at 8:35 AM on May 28, 2008


Never impressed with after the fact expose. If Scott McClellan knew then the war was wrong and kept silent out of "political loyalty", does it make him morally accountable for every life lost because of his silence. Well, at least McClellan spared himself the embrassment of appearing in the next "Profiles in Courage" edition.
posted by ljrsphb at 8:36 AM on May 28, 2008


The book ... has been described to the president.

"Well, Mr President, it's a stack of paper glued together on one side, about this wide and yea tall. If you hold it like this and hit someone on the head with it, it'll stun them for a couple of seconds, but if you hold it by the spine and wave it, it's kinda flappy."
posted by Grangousier at 8:41 AM on May 28, 2008 [32 favorites]


Sorry, didn't mean to call you a Republican. I'm not angry at you. I'm angry at the stranglehold the idea "if it's for profit, anything goes!" has on our culture.
posted by DU at 8:41 AM on May 28, 2008


"Rather than open this Pandora's Box, the administration chose a different path — not employing out-and-out deception, but shading the truth," he wrote of the effort to convince the world that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction, an effort he said used "innuendo and implication" and "intentional ignoring of intelligence to the contrary."

Yes on the fact that McClellan is an opportunistic, sniveling whatever.

But isn't this passage above exactly - exactly - what we evil lib'rulz have been saying since day one?

This buries your conservative friends who still yammer on about the need for war in Iraq. McClellan confirms that even those making the decisions knew there was no "need." A very large nail in the rotting coffin of the conservative movement.
posted by kgasmart at 8:44 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


I'm looking forward to how Dana Perino answers the questions that will fall naturally out of this book.

My money's on "I have not read the book and so I can't comment on that until after I have read the book, which I do not intend to read."
posted by rokusan at 8:44 AM on May 28, 2008


A very large nail in the rotting coffin of the conservative movement.

Sure, in theory. But these days, the nails always seem to be buried first.
posted by rokusan at 8:45 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


it's funny. When they announced that Fleischer was getting out, I wondered where they'd have to look to find someone with as little integrity or conscience as he had. Then they found McClellan, then Perino, then Tony Snow. Apparently, there are a lot more of these people out there than I really wanted to believe existed.
posted by psmealey at 8:47 AM on May 28, 2008


I don't know, man, a fat rail has a way of cutting through a swimming pool worth of booze and bringing you some seriously crystalline clarity in no time flat. I imagine Bush planted that little seed in Scott's ear intentionally, assuming this portrait of plausible deniability would emerge in books written down the road.
posted by The Straightener at 8:48 AM on May 28, 2008


"...We're sure that McClellan means what he says, but lots of Washingtonians think poorly of their successors but bite their tongue and play the role of a good soldier. So why didn't McClellan do this? Simple: Speaking out against the Bush administration in such harsh tones is simply a smart career move by McClellan. He never became a stand-alone brand. He was never adored by the press corps. He was never adored by the Bush White House and Republicans generally (especially not now). He never developed his own schtick like Tony Snow (charming, funny, cancer survivor) or Dana Perino (hot, snippy, cute dog).

So what does this get him? Some John Dean-like street cred and the business opportunities (books, speaking engagements, consulting gigs, etc.) presented to a 'reformed Republican' who possesses a rather rare quality nowadays (and one loved by the Left): A willingness to speak out against the Bush administration's march to war." *
posted by ericb at 8:50 AM on May 28, 2008


...Colin Powell has revealed that he spent 2½ hours vainly trying to persuade President George W. Bush not to invade Iraq...

Wow. An entire two and a half hours. Well, I guess he tried his best. He's off the hook.
posted by goatdog at 8:51 AM on May 28, 2008 [7 favorites]


A very large nail in the rotting coffin of the conservative movement.

George Packer has written a pretty awesome essay about the demise of the conservative movement in America.
posted by KokuRyu at 8:52 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


This buries your conservative friends who still yammer on about the need for war in Iraq. McClellan confirms that even those making the decisions knew there was no "need." A very large nail in the rotting coffin of the conservative movement.

No it doesn't and no it isn't. You're STILL operating under the assumption that these people care about facts and evaluate things rationally? McClellan's actions are obviously self-serving, but the noise machine will spin it to "that means he's also LYING", and that will be that. Not that they even have to spin it. If Bush himself went door to door and screamed "THE WAR IN IRAQ WAS A HORRIBLE MISTAKE" in their faces with a megaphone, they'd just reply "you forget 9/11?" and shove him out the door before going off to rant about the Liberal Hollyweird MSM aiding the Islamofascists on Little Green Footballs.
posted by DecemberBoy at 8:55 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]



Wow. An entire two and a half hours. Well, I guess he tried his best. He's off the hook.


The fact he kept the president's attention for more than fifteen minutes warrants a Medal of Valor, IMO.
posted by Bathtub Bobsled at 8:55 AM on May 28, 2008 [9 favorites]


McClellan's actions are obviously self-serving, but the noise machine will spin it to "that means he's also LYING", and that will be that.

Actually, what's really cracking me up today is the main headline on Drudge, "Scott the Snitch."

Not, see, that Bush maneuvered the country into war by shading the truth - no outrage over that. Outrage only that the game would be revealed.

So completely indicative of the poisonous conservative mindset that’s been running roughshod over this country for the better part of a decade. And no, while this doesn't change the mind of the mouth-breathers over at LGF, it does help peel away whatever remaining normal Americans that might have still been willing to give Teh Leader the benefit of the doubt. The three of four left.
posted by kgasmart at 8:59 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


America's version of ritual suicide: get spanked in the press for a week and walk away with a large pile of money from your book deal. Seems to lack a bit of gravitas.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 9:00 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


DU writes "Sorry, didn't mean to call you a Republican. I'm not angry at you. I'm angry at the stranglehold the idea 'if it's for profit, anything goes!' has on our culture."

Well, I definitely agree with that, and I'm not mad at you either. But I'm just finding political discussions more difficult these days. I'll be glad when the election is over ... maybe we can really start to move past this at that point.
posted by krinklyfig at 9:05 AM on May 28, 2008


...the main headline on Drudge, "Scott the Snitch."

Wow. To triangulate on this attitude, I checked in at the often-hilarious RedState. Their take on Scott McClellan: We've always hated him. Because he's bad at his job.

First of all, that's a little beside the point. Second, this is classic: "It's a really crappy way to repay his boss and friend by then throwing everyone else under the bus to save his skin."

Wouldn't this imply the existence of a bus and a threat to his skin? I.e. the accusations are true? And you are now abandoning the "Bush League"? No, of course not! Steamrolling on with the politics of personal destruction!
posted by DU at 9:05 AM on May 28, 2008


Seems to lack a bit of gravitas.

You get that after the interest on the large pile of money accrues.
posted by notyou at 9:08 AM on May 28, 2008


I'm old school I guess but I wait until I have read a book before I review it
posted by srboisvert at 9:16 AM on May 28, 2008


His first job as press secretary is to deal with the press as the White House directs.

God forbid he act like a citizen or human being and stand up to the shit, eh?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:18 AM on May 28, 2008


I'll reserve judgment until the gruntled ones have their say.
posted by StickyCarpet at 9:20 AM on May 28, 2008


I had a conservative movement this morning. It's the same place America has been heading for the last number of years.
posted by Goofyy at 9:20 AM on May 28, 2008 [3 favorites]


DU:
It's OK to lie if that's your job? What? Since when (in the human world) did business needs trump ethics?

vs fig's original:

If he comes across information which leads him to believe his bosses aren't being honest with him, then he should leave his position and speak to that outside of his professional capacity, if his conscience tells him to.

HTH
posted by tachikaze at 9:23 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


Not, see, that Bush maneuvered the country into war by shading the truth - no outrage over that. Outrage only that the game would be revealed.

That is pretty astonishing. Could this mean that only the dumbest flag-decal-pickup-driving mouthbreathers actually believe the party line? Could it mean that very few people actually believe that "we have to fight them there or fight them here", that torture isn't torture, and all the rest, but many more people claim to, that they're voluntarily in on the "joke" and really support the true objective of American empire-building? I mean, we know that the Bush administration and Limbaugh/Hannity/et al don't believe it but say it anyway, but could that even extend to run-of-the-mill members of the Bush fanclub?

I can't believe that, I'd go insane. I'd much rather attribute it to stupidity rather than malice.
posted by DecemberBoy at 9:23 AM on May 28, 2008


I dislike McClellan, but he's still better than Fleisher or Perino. Those two are True Believers and would never have written a book like this. I'd rather "know" than not "know", I guess.
posted by longdaysjourney at 9:24 AM on May 28, 2008


I'm old school I guess but I wait until I have read a book before I review it

In the interim you can read some selected passages.
posted by ericb at 9:24 AM on May 28, 2008


If McClellan is described as a "rat" by his Republican critics, does that mean Republicans are admitting they behave like Mafioso?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:34 AM on May 28, 2008


I can read this either as kicking the boss when he's down, or something akin to a presentation to the commission set up in South Africa to document the actions of the previous government.

Whatever the motivation, I get to hear the truth.
posted by zippy at 9:36 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


Playground fart analogies, followed by accusations of having no class?
posted by stinkycheese at 9:36 AM on May 28, 2008


I can't believe that, I'd go insane. I'd much rather attribute it to stupidity rather than malice.

It's malice specifically calculated to misinform the uniformed.

Beyond that, it's of a piece. You've probably seen the dust-up earlier this week about how Jimmy Carter dared confirm that Israel has 150 nukes. Carter revealed state secrets, the right-wingers thundered; he legitimized Iran's quest for nukes.

Translation: Ignorance is better.

Because the American public, fully informed, can't be trusted to make the "right" decision; the decision that leads to greater American glory, to greater American power. They must, therefore, be uninformed - purposely misled, where necessary - that they might do the "right" thing, whatever Our Leaders have determined that is.

Many on the right know full well Iraq was never a real threat. But they were happy to sell it that way, and probably came to believe it themselves. An existential threat - in a very, very broad way. The lies not only sell the war, they're comforting if you believe in this mythological version of America where white (or blood red) lies are necessary to achieve the Greater Truth.
posted by kgasmart at 9:38 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


DecemberBoy, I believe that, and you're right, it's pretty depressing.

The good news is that the people who are voluntarily in on the joke will happily switch to any ever other myth that keeps social order in their favor.
posted by anthill at 9:42 AM on May 28, 2008


Decemberboy: "Could this mean that only the dumbest flag-decal-pickup-driving mouthbreathers actually believe the party line?"

Some of my friends are intelligent, educated, dyed-in-the-wool Republicans. Until two years ago, they were behind Bush.

I think that some people in the Republican Party have strong loyalty, and that this loyalty leads them to want to believe their leaders.

Regarding the issue of torture, I had a conversation with one friend about this, and they so strongly did not want to think that the US could be involved in torture, that it became difficult for us to talk about the issue at all. It wasn't the case of "here's evidence, what do you think?" It was more "here's evidence." "No, we don't torture." "Yes, really. Here's more evidence." "No, we don't torture."
posted by zippy at 9:43 AM on May 28, 2008


At 40, Mr. McLellan is under the recruitment age limit. I expect he'll be volunteering for service in Iraq ASAP.

not employing out-and-out deception, but shading the truth

All of the examples of evidence of Iraq's alleged WMD that the Bush administration cited was challenged within the administration before we invaded, but they presented them as undisputed facts. Aluminum tubes? Condoleeza Rice said they "are only really suited for nuclear weapons programs," despite government nuclear experts saying they weren't. Mobile biological weapons labs? According to one informant, Curveball, who was a crazy drunk. They quoted defector Hussein Kamel, who'd said that Iraq had WMD, without mentioned that he'd also said in 1995 that "All weapons--biological, chemical, missile, nuclear--were destroyed." Cheney said, "Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction." Rumsfeld said, "We know where they are. They're in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south and north somewhat." "Shading the truth," indeed.

Powell tried to talk Bush out of war

Fuck Colin Powell. When he first got the Iraq UN speech he said, "I'm not reading this. This is bullshit." Then he read it anyway.

Bush saw 'his opportunity to create a legacy of greatness,' something McClellan said Bush has said he believes is only available to wartime presidents.

It's usually only available to wartime presidents when someone else starts the war, not when you start the war and lie about your reasons for starting it.

Bush doesn't care what people today think about him, only that the history books remember him as great. Odd for a guy that doesn't like to read.

But not odd for a Yale History major like President Bush.

Whereas now we have Perino, who seems to not only not know what the truth is, but also not care.

But as Stephanie Miller says, she's a Lying Sack of Cute.

MetaFilter thread on McLellan's departure.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:51 AM on May 28, 2008 [4 favorites]


But not odd for a Yale History major like President Bush.

History is and always has been a gut major at Yale (like psychology practically everywhere else). I'm sure he would have majored in Physical Ed if they had offered it.
posted by psmealey at 9:55 AM on May 28, 2008


I'm angry at the stranglehold the idea "if it's for profit, anything goes!" has on our culture. - DU

Oh you ain't seen nothing yet. Wait for the next generation.

We brought this on ourselves, gang.
posted by rokusan at 9:55 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


"I know the president pretty well. I believe that, if he had been given a crystal ball in which he could have foreseen the costs of war — more than 4,000 American troops killed, 30,000 injured and tens of thousands of innocent Iraqis dead — he would never have made the decision to invade, despite what he might say or feel he has to say publicly today," McClellan wrote.

A crystal ball. A crystal fucking ball. Because, God knows, all those history books only talk about the past.
Or, you know, they could stop spying on the people who told them it was an asshole move, and hire them to run the country.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 9:57 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


Carter revealed state secrets, the right-wingers thundered; he legitimized Iran's quest for nukes.

Uh-oh.
posted by homunculus at 10:01 AM on May 28, 2008


Now that I no longer receive a check from the Bush Administration I realize how incompetent and horrible they are.

[ checks mail, sees tax rebate ]

Man. You guys are really being too hard on Bush.
posted by tkchrist at 10:04 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm with kirkaracha. Fuck Colin Powell and fuck Scott McClellan. Opportunistic "which way is the wind blowing now" assholes. I hope they both rot in the hell that I don't believe exists. Well. You get the idea.
posted by tkchrist at 10:08 AM on May 28, 2008


god forbid we should have posts on one article or book that we think might open up a heated political round of hooting. Wonder it wasn't yanked.
posted by yazi at 10:10 AM on May 28, 2008


> This buries your conservative friends...

I doubt it.
posted by The Card Cheat at 10:12 AM on May 28, 2008


The media, liberal or not, let the country down when they needed them most. They still are in many respects. A rogue administration runs roughshod over truth and the constitution and the media treats them with kid gloves. Contrast that with the media feeding frenzy that was Watergate.
posted by caddis at 10:16 AM on May 28, 2008


"I know the president pretty well. I believe that, if he had been given a crystal ball in which he could have foreseen the costs of war — more than 4,000 American troops killed, 30,000 injured and tens of thousands of innocent Iraqis dead — he would never have made the decision to invade, despite what he might say or feel he has to say publicly today," McClellan wrote.

A crystal ball. A crystal fucking ball.


All they had to do was to ask me, you know? I would have told them right off, then and there, what was going to happen. Hell, so could have my mom. So could their Aunt Sadie in New Jersey. For fuck's sake.
posted by jokeefe at 10:30 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


*loses ability to use proper grammar in frenzy of irritation*
posted by jokeefe at 10:31 AM on May 28, 2008


I'll wait for Gannon's book
posted by rakish_yet_centered at 10:43 AM on May 28, 2008 [4 favorites]


Of course, part of the blame for the entire mess should fall on the liberal media for being "too easy on the administration during the run-up to the war...".

Well, that's true, at least. Did hell just freeze over?
posted by Artw at 10:44 AM on May 28, 2008


One of these days, the whole nation will break down in motified weeping, the way a 28-year-old party does after a particularly drama-filled party, in which his best friend was hospitalized after ODing on heroin (when did he start using that?) and he caught his girlfriend in a threesome with that creepy guy from the band and a girl they were just making fun of earlier that evening. America will just run into the street and sit down on the curb, the world crashing around its ears, tears staining mascara down the country's cheeks, and it will look at itself, in its metallic shirt and cut-off jeans, and it will just cry and cry and cry.

Later, America will go home, start throwing out CDs of house music, but then stumble upon that Mr. Fingers CD, which really is excellent. And America will put on Mr. Fingers, and just cry and dance for hours. And the girlfriend will call, and they will have a long talk, and will decide they should just be friends, but they are okay with that, and they will end the call by saying how glad they are to be friends, and how much they love each other, even if it is not as boyfriend and girlfriend. And America will greet the morning with a sense of hope.

Later that day, America will get the news that the friend died in the hospital.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:48 AM on May 28, 2008 [14 favorites]


a 28-year-old party boy, rather.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:49 AM on May 28, 2008


Excerpt of McClellan's book.
posted by ericb at 10:58 AM on May 28, 2008


Astro Zombie -- sort of an overextended metaphor, innit?

I'm still trying to figure out just what, exactly, you mean to be getting at.
posted by DoctorFedora at 10:58 AM on May 28, 2008


I mean we have to just CRY DANCE IT OUT.

C'mon. Must I explain everything?
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:59 AM on May 28, 2008


Apparently, there are a lot more of these people out there than I really wanted to believe existed.

Yeah, and a fuck-all of a lot of 'em are in this administration. Let's see, what's Bush's popularity factor down to, now? 27%? I heard some knucklehead on NPR just today saying, "This is not a failed president."
posted by Guy_Inamonkeysuit at 11:00 AM on May 28, 2008


Astro Zombie is also saying that it might get better, but then it will get worse. Astro Zombie is saying so in an awesomer manner though.
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 11:03 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


"Agreed, Miko. I'm not interested in hearing from any more of these peons until Colin Powell finally gives an account of himself. That guy sacrificed his entire reputation and career in the service of these scoundrels, I'm kind of curious what he's up to now."


Fuck Colin Powell. He's been a lackey and a scumbag since he was a bagman for Ollie North in Iran/Contra.
posted by stenseng at 11:06 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


In fact, fuck that! Colin Powell has been a lackey and a scumbag since My Lai.
posted by stenseng at 11:08 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


"Astro Zombie -- sort of an overextended metaphor, innit?

I'm still trying to figure out just what, exactly, you mean to be getting at."


Me too. Are the Democrats the girlfriend? Is the friend who overdosed supposed to be Putin?

Come on, keep these things simple.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 11:11 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


God damn you. It's not an analog. Everything in the story isn't supposed to reporesent one other thing. I was just trying to catch the mood of the moment, and the story was not at all authbiographical ... auto ... bio ...

(Breaks down weeping, mascara smearing his face.)
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:14 AM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


Screw McClellan, and screw Powell. The appropriate reaction would have been "Mr. President, I resign", not "At least now I have some material for a book". And when reporters ask you why, you tell them in no uncertain terms.

If Powell really wanted to stop the war drums, "The Secretary of State has resigned and refuses to be a part of what he calls an unnecessary war based on flimsy evidence" would be a significantly more effective headline than "The Secretary of State brought a vial of anthrax to the United Nations to show the world what a big meanie Saddam Hussein is".
posted by Flunkie at 11:16 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


ericb quotes The Times: The former American secretary of state Colin Powell has revealed that he spent 2½ hours vainly trying to persuade President George W. Bush not to invade Iraq--

ericb, thanks for posting these links. I don't think the Times story accurately represents what Powell actually said, though. He didn't spend 2.5 hours telling Bush, "Don't do this." He walked Bush through the costs and consequences, but his main argument was that the US should go to the UN Security Council (which in fact it did, obtaining resolution 1441); he also told Bush that he would support going to war, if that was Bush's decision. And he continues to defend the decision to go to war; he's primarily criticizing the post-war occupation.

Powell's analysis (as of 2007) of the situation in Iraq:
... the considered view of the intelligence community is that Al Qaeda only constitutes perhaps 10 percent of all of the belligerents in this conflict. It is a nasty 10 percent. It is a 10 percent that is focusing on killing American troops. And they are the most effective 10 percent with their enhanced IEDs and the way they go about it. But it's still 10 percent.

... even if you got rid of Al Qaeda you're still going to have the civil war that can only be solved by the Iraqi political leadership. Much was said about Mr. Maliki and his government. It's a government that hasn't extended its authority outside of the Green Zone to any large extent. It is a government that is as much organized around sectarian interests within the parliament, within the Cabinet, as it is a government that has come together for a single national purpose. Everybody says we've got to go make sure that Mr. Maliki has the will. So the Vice President has gone over and told him you’ve got to have the will. The Secretary of Defense has gone over. The Secretary of State has gone over. Everybody has gone over and delivered the same message. And Mr. Maliki always says yes. But that is not the right question. The question that should have been asked at the beginning of the surge, as we move in with all of our troops, not only does Mr. Maliki have the will to do the political part of it, does he have the means, does he have the ability? And the answer so far is a flat no. ...

The civil war will ultimately be resolved by a test of arms. The Shias will ultimately prevail because they are 60 percent of the population. And their militia can be pretty violent. They will prevail also because they are determined not to be ruled again by a Sunni the way they were ruled under Saddam Hussein. The Sunnis are struggling for power and survival and it's going to be resolved in a test of arms. It's going to be very ugly. It's not going to be pretty to watch. But I don't know any way to avoid it. ...

... it is hard for me to be optimistic. But what is it that I see at the end of the -- the end of the game. I see a country that has probably stayed together. Its three constituent parts stay together -- the Sunnis, the Kurds and the Shias, and it will have a Shia dominated government that hopefully, will be sensible enough to give the Sunnis a piece of the action with oil revenues, political presence, participating in the government in a real way. It will be a Shia regime that will be more fundamentalist than we would like. It will be a Shia regime that will probably be linked more closely to Iran than we would like to see. But it will not be Iranian dominated. Because we still have an eight-year war between them that is recent history.
posted by russilwvong at 11:16 AM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


I would cry at the sheer cowardice and utter lack of self-awareness embodied by that liberal media line, but I just don't have anything left. It says everything, everything criminal that was done, the failure to acknowledge the damage and take responsibility, and the finger-pointing and name-calling that they've used so successfully to distract everyone away from what they were really doing. He's presenting himself as someone who was duped, but I doubt he's going to find much sympathy from anyone for being a tool.

I will bring my best mixtapes over and try though, Astro Zombie.
posted by Tehanu at 11:29 AM on May 28, 2008


Why tell us now?
posted by hortense at 12:05 PM on May 28, 2008


I'm with krinklyfig, kgasmart, longdaysjourney and the rest who say "better a book than going to the grave with what he knows really happened in that time."

I make no excuses for what McClellan did during his tenure as press secretary, but the NBC excerpt demonstrates what seems to be honest contrition. You might say "So fucking what. He lied, and countless people died." Yes. That appears to be true. More appropriate might be "Too fucking late."

Anyway, I'm glad his account is out there for people to read ... just don't buy the book. Steal it from Barnes & Noble. ;)

On preview: Screw McClellan, and screw Powell. The appropriate reaction would have been "Mr. President, I resign", not "At least now I have some material for a book". And when reporters ask you why, you tell them in no uncertain terms.

If you read the excerpts, it seems clear that he didn't realize the monstrosity of his ways until much later. However, I would agree that both should be screwed.

I would cry at the sheer cowardice and utter lack of self-awareness embodied by that liberal media line...

Also, to be fair, I think he uses the term "liberal media" in quotes to indicate that it's a conservative perception, not his opinion. That doesn't come across in paraphrasing.
posted by mrgrimm at 12:07 PM on May 28, 2008


Why tell us now?

Because history is written by the winners, baby. Would you prefer an insider's account of the administration's lead-up to Iraq war written by Condoleeza Rice?

Also, again, it seems clear from the excerpt that he realized the error of his ways *after* he left the position. It seems to me that the book is an extended apology (at least that's the tone of the NBC excerpt).

That doesn't change the fact that you can still say "fuck your apology" if you'd like.
posted by mrgrimm at 12:10 PM on May 28, 2008


Brandon Blatcher writes "God forbid he act like a citizen or human being and stand up to the shit, eh?"

Well, not to beat this into the ground, but it looks like a lot of people are unfamiliar with the position of PR. I definitely agree that it should be beneath anyone to lie knowingly on behalf of their boss, particularly when so much is at stake. But PR involves glossing over uncomfortable truths as part of the job description. I'm not saying it's right. I could never be in PR for this reason, which is also why I could never work in marketing. It's not within me to lie for a living. But a press secretary who is really bothered by being political over being honest should probably apply for a different job. Again, this doesn't make it right, but I'm not at all surprised that McClellan was used in this way, and I wouldn't be surprised if he didn't really question much until he knew he'd been lied to. That sort of comes with the territory. What's surprising is that an administration which placed loyalty above all other virtues would have this many former members come out publicly and contradict their former boss(es), while the administration is still in power. I can't give McClellan too much credit for being a good person; too late for that. But I can give him credit for doing something rather than doing nothing, because nobody expects a hired weasel to tell the truth. They shouldn't be treated as heroes, but neither should this be dismissed out of hand.
posted by krinklyfig at 12:20 PM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


I see that of Scott's passages could have used some editing. I thought maybe I could help him out:

Many within the White House were in denial about the administration's responsibility for didn't give a shit about Katrina and didn't want to interrupt Bush's vacation ...we largely ignored the fact that the federal government was the vital backup, the fail-safe mechanism supposed to compensate for breakdowns at the lower levels had no fucking idea why we were there or what we were supposed to do. When you're president, the buck stops with you -- a one of the endless number of lessons George W. Bush still hadsn't fully remedially absorbed.
posted by pardonyou? at 12:29 PM on May 28, 2008


But PR involves glossing over uncomfortable truths as part of the job description.

When you're a federal employee, you work for the people. Lying to the people isn't part of the job description. Even McClellan has realized that he didn't act honorably.
posted by grouse at 12:34 PM on May 28, 2008


If you read the excerpts, it seems clear that he didn't realize the monstrosity of his ways until much later.
Aaw, he's so naive... how can I stay mad at him? He's like a little kitten!
posted by anthill at 12:54 PM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


I can accept that being a bit starstruck at having been offered the job, already mired in the conservative mindset, and surrounded by right-wing yes-men that provided a constant stream of affirmation to the liberals-are-evil, the-war-is-necessary points of view, McClellan really did allow himself to believe what he was saying. I don't think he was good, or particularly moral, but I also think his capacity for self-deception isn't much huger than my own.

I'd like to think that under those circumstances I'd have the moral fortitude to do the research, make the call, quit my job and turn my back on my career, friends, future (this is back when the war WAS popular, let's not forget) to do the right thing, but I honestly don't know if I could find that strength in his shoes. Again, I hope I could.

I know that the moral thing to do with my life would be to sell most of my belongings, give the proceeds to charities I value, quit my job and work in the public sector or as a teacher or nurse or something, and I'm not doing any of those things, even though somewhere in the back of my head is the knowledge that this would be the optimal way for me to contribute to the world. I'm not selling an evil war to an easily duped public, but I make moral compromises to enhance my personal comfort every day.

Of course, nobody's ever going to give me a bazillion dollars to write a tell-all about how I played Katamari Damacy instead of working at a soup kitchen in my spare time, either.
posted by Shepherd at 1:16 PM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


"If you read the excerpts, it seems clear that he didn't realize the monstrosity of his ways until much later."

If you go back to posts made in the months leading up to invasion, here and elsewhere, you'll see many here (perhaps most) realized the monstrosity of what was going on. Those were people who didn't have the face time with the president and other directly involved. McClellan did. I'm just having a hard time believing he drank it all in and thought it was anything but stupid, especially seeing his "real" impresions now.

I call bullshit.
posted by Ragma at 1:18 PM on May 28, 2008


Also, again, it seems clear from the excerpt that he realized the error of his ways *after* he left the position. It seems to me that the book is an extended apology (at least that's the tone of the NBC excerpt)

That's my perception as well, although a lot of that might be how all of the articles about the book are coming across. Haven't read it, myself. Probably won't.

Here's what's interesting to me, though. The book will either be seen by some, like mrgrimm said, as an "Oh shit, I can't believe I was involved in all this" kind of apology. It will be seen by others as an act of self-absolution, or as a way for McClellan to salvage whatever political future he might still have by distancing himself from the administration. Or it could be seen as simple, self-serving policticking.

But the thing is, regardless of his real intent, he crossed Bush and Rove. Why didn't he write the book a few years ago? Well, a few years ago showing disloyalty to BushCo would have meant never again landing a job in any political circle (and maybe never ever again getting a job that paid more than $10/hr). So it seems to me that there is recognition now, within circles that were once loyal to (and fearful of) Bush/Rove, that their power is waning.

I think further proof of this is that at one time, in publishing a book critical of the Bush/Rove machine (which was once the Republican machine itself) and getting on their bad side, McClellan would have run the risk of seriously damaging his mother's political ambitions/career. (Carole Keeton Strayhorn is the former Texas Comptroller, and she ran for governor against incumbent Rick Perry in 2006.)

He couldn't have published this book during her campaign -- it would have killed any chance she had of winning. And by publishing it now, it seems (to me) that Republicans aren't so fearful anymore, that the puppet masters have dropped a few strings, and that maybe things are going to get a little less scary.





Or maybe he's just a self-aggrandizing shill, and I'm desperate for a silver lining.
posted by mudpuppie at 2:04 PM on May 28, 2008


Any one think S.M. is lying in this book? The reason I ask is that I cruised through the comments in some very conservative blogs.
The majority number of commenters are accusing him of lying. I would think if he was lying about Bush, Cheney, Rummy, etc. he would be subject to civil suits?
posted by notreally at 2:35 PM on May 28, 2008


The reason I ask is that I cruised through the comments in some very conservative blogs. The majority number of commenters are accusing him of lying.

Good question. While we're at it, does anyone know if Barack Obama really is the Antichrist, or if it's true that America-hating liberals want to impose their San Francisco values on hard-working church-going Americans and implement the homosexual agenda enabling fag teachers to buttrape your children in school?

Dude, of course they're going to say that.
posted by DecemberBoy at 2:41 PM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


Why didn't he write the book a few years ago?

What Didn't Happen

Also from TNR: Scott McClellan, bad liar.
posted by mrgrimm at 2:58 PM on May 28, 2008


It will be a Shia regime that will be more fundamentalist than we would like. It will be a Shia regime that will probably be linked more closely to Iran than we would like to see. But it will not be Iranian dominated. Because we still have an eight-year war between them that is recent history.
It bothers me so much that we never hear people talk about the Iran-Iraq war when they talk about current relationship between the two countries. What bothers me more is that, as I understand it, isn't Powell wrong here?

The al-Dawa party (which Maliki belongs to) and SCIRI are the controlling faction in the Iraqi government right now. These are parties composed of exiles who lived in Iran during that eight-year war. The Badr Brigade is their militant wing, which trained with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and fought against Iraq. The Sadrists (the 'militant groups' that Maliki is currently crushing) are the nationalist groups who were actually in Iraq during the war, and would be less disposed to influence from the Iranian government.

For those of you that follow this, isn't that an accurate description of the situation?
posted by heathkit at 3:29 PM on May 28, 2008


Wow, I thought the "What Didn't Happen" piece was pretty brutal before I read the note at the bottom explaining that all of the quotes are from the book.

White Lies: McClellan Then and Now on Bush's Cocaine Use

From the excerpt: "he began his presidency with considerable goodwill."

Not really. His popularity was already declining before the massive spike after the 9/11 attacks.

McLellan says that, like LBJ, Bush is a "Texan with a stubborn streak whose domestic accomplishments were overshadowed by a controversial war." Ummm...what domestic accomplishments? Most people drowned in the streets of an American city?

if he had been given a crystal ball in which he could have foreseen the costs of war...he would never have made the decision to invade

Too bad God told him to invade Iraq and apparently said there wouldn't be any casualties.

History is and always has been a gut major at Yale (like psychology practically everywhere else).

President Bush's having attended Yale made it tough for me to decide if he was an evil genius, or just evil and stupid, until I realized that his dad also went to Yale and he was a legacy, like Flounder.
posted by kirkaracha at 4:02 PM on May 28, 2008


Laura Bush and Jenna Bush also recently released a ... telling book.
Read All About It! and review.
posted by phoque at 4:14 PM on May 28, 2008


or if it's true that America-hating liberals want to impose their San Francisco values on hard-working church-going Americans and implement the homosexual agenda enabling fag teachers to buttrape your children in school?

It can't be any worse than what happens after choir practice at your local parochial school. And by pro-lifers to boot!
posted by psmealey at 4:19 PM on May 28, 2008


"McClellan’s surprising revelations mark a drastic shift from his past rhetoric regarding the war. During his time as press secretary, McClellan repeatedly defended the conduct of the war, justified the case that was made to launch it and defended Bush’s handling of the war, once even referring to him as a 'straight shooter' on Iraq:
– 'There was a lot of debate going on about the pre-war intelligence that was used in the lead up to the decision to go into Iraq and remove a brutal tyrant from his position of power. There were irresponsible and unfounded accusations being made against the administration, suggesting that we had manipulated or misused that intelligence. That was flat-out false.' [4/07/06]

– 'I’ve known this President a long time, and this President is someone I think the American people recognize as a straight shooter, someone who, when he says something, means it, and does exactly what he says he’s going to do…when it comes to Iraq, in terms of the intelligence the President is someone that laid all that information out before the American people.' [7/01/04]

– '[W]e’ve been very straightforward about where we are in terms of the theater in Iraq.' [8/20/03]

– QUESTION: [D]oes [Bush] feel he misled the American people? McCLELLAN: No. [7/16/03] *
posted by ericb at 4:26 PM on May 28, 2008


QUESTION: [D]oes [Bush] feel he misled the American people? McCLELLAN: No. [7/16/03] *

I certainly feel missled.
posted by psmealey at 4:50 PM on May 28, 2008


I didn't believe a word he said back then. I don't believe a word he says now. I didn't care about what he had to say then. I don't care about what he has to say now. I honestly don't even understand why names like "Scott McClellan" even show up occasionally in my subjective reality. I stopped believing in people like that a very long time ago.
posted by ZachsMind at 4:58 PM on May 28, 2008


heathkit: For those of you that follow this, isn't that an accurate description of the situation?

Sort of; Iran is certainly in a very strong position in Iraq. That said, Sadr is still a major political force. Sadr profile. Analysis of the political situation in Iraq by Noah Feldman.
posted by russilwvong at 4:59 PM on May 28, 2008


"I remember thinking to myself, How can that be?" McClellan wrote. "How can someone simply not remember whether or not they used an illegal substance like cocaine? It didn't make a lot of sense."

Simple. Even with all his wealth & influence, Bush was obviously still too thick to find a dealer with the quality gear. Makes perfect sense to me.
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:23 PM on May 28, 2008


I have seen hundreds of people do cocaine. I have never met one who didn't remember whether they did it or not. The reason it produces craving so fiercely is, in part, because the first few highs are so memorably good.

It's vaguely plausible that some dealer ripped off the rich kids by selling them pure mannitol, I suppose... nah!!!!
posted by Maias at 5:50 PM on May 28, 2008


For Astro Zombie....and America.
http://youtube.com/watch?v=MkpLR4WzIBc
posted by mr.curmudgeon at 6:36 PM on May 28, 2008


But, given what we went through for the last seven years, this is a step, if only one step towards undoing the damage.

How does this undo anything? WTF? Several hundred thousand dead Iraqis, several thousand dead American kids, fucking Abu Ghraib and Gitmo, a destroyed economy... and Scotty's shitty book "undoes" something?

I don't think so.
posted by five fresh fish at 7:03 PM on May 28, 2008


MetaFilter: Sorry, I didn't mean to call you a Republican.
posted by brain cloud at 7:17 PM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


Damn you Curmudgeon! You linked to Chris Crocker! Now I just accidentally increased his YouTube hit counter! I really don't wanna know what he has to say about depression, or anything. Chris Crocker is another name that I keep willing out of my subjective reality but the bastard keeps popping back in there.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:42 PM on May 28, 2008


One word: Doublethink.
posted by OldReliable at 7:42 PM on May 28, 2008


But PR involves glossing over uncomfortable truths as part of the job description.

Knowing that your boss is taking your country to war is a bit more an "uncomfortable truth".
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:52 PM on May 28, 2008


Other former members of the administration seem to be doing well:

Bush's former spooks enjoy the profits of war: Now working inside America's "shadow" spy industry, George Tenet, Richard Armitage, Cofer Black and others are cashing in big on Iraq and the war on terror.
posted by homunculus at 10:10 PM on May 28, 2008


Pardon my cluelessness, but why and how was McClellan forced to resign as press secretary?
posted by mecran01 at 10:51 PM on May 28, 2008


Well, why, all of a sudden, if he had all these grave concerns, did he not raise these sooner? This is one-and-a-half years after he left the administration. And now, all of a sudden, he's raising these grave concerns that he claims he had.
-- Scott McLellan [via]
posted by kirkaracha at 10:55 PM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


It's not exactly the "profits of war." It's the theft of your taxes. A straight pipeline from your wallet to theirs. And not for providing any service that you actually need, like healthcare: no, it's massive profit for providing services that are putting your own lives at greater risk.

It's so fucked up that "fucked up" doesn't even begin to describe it.

I really, really hope this next election turns things around for y'all, 'cause I don't see any way your nation can survive a repeat of this past disaster.

Scary perspective: each and every American carries $330 000 dollars in government debt. (You can skip to the paragraph that begins "Tonight, I want to talk about a different matter." The big number: the USA is $99 trillion in debt.)

How much better off you'd all be if instead of spending 54% of government revenues on war, you put half that amount into healthcare, education, infrastructure, and small business development. Paradise on earth? Sure to god it would be.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:56 PM on May 28, 2008


From the AP: White House calls McClellan's book sour grapes.

The White House responded angrily Wednesday to McClellan's confessional memoir, calling it self-serving sour grapes.

"Scott, we now know, is disgruntled about his experience at the White House," said current White House press secretary Dana Perino, a former deputy to McClellan. "We are puzzled. It is sad. This is not the Scott we knew." [...]

"Not once did Scott approach me - privately or publicly - to discuss any misgivings he had about the war in Iraq or the manner in which the White House made the case for war," McClellan's predecessor as press secretary, Ari Fleischer, said.


It's funny to remember that when McClellan first took over, he was seen as so comparatively open in comparison to previous spokesrobot Ari Fleischer that white house press corp journalists referred to him as "teddy bear."
posted by whir at 11:09 PM on May 28, 2008


Defectiveyeti.com's Matthew Baldwin:

Scott McClellan's new book, summarized: "I totally didn't know I was lying those 630,000 times."
posted by gen at 11:25 PM on May 28, 2008 [2 favorites]


I've been studying Chinese history lately, and there was a time, back in the late Song Dynasty, I think it was, when beliefs about governance and policy started to become moralized -- morality infused political positions, which inevitably led to a tendency for adherents of one position to not only disagree with their counterparts, but to characterize them as evil, and disputation become a matter not of mere disagreement, but of hatred and (heh) mortal combat.

I found it interesting, in that ol' nothing-new-under-the-sun kind of way.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 12:26 AM on May 29, 2008


It's funny to remember that when McClellan first took over, he was seen as so comparatively open in comparison to previous spokesrobot Ari Fleischer that white house press corp journalists referred to him as "teddy bear."

I would have said "puppy dog". McClellan struck me as a guy who was way in over his head, basically a nice guy, but desperately trying to gain the approval of his bosses and his peers, who were quite comfortable living the den of vipers they had constructed.

There were times when I almost felt bad for him, but those feelings were tempered with the knowledge that he had chosen to be there, and that he willingly lent himself over to be vessel of lies and cynicism.

Charitably, the guy seems to have more of a conscience than I had really suspected, but since his book is now No. 1, it's reasonable to assume that he had other motives as well.
posted by psmealey at 3:18 AM on May 29, 2008


beliefs about governance and policy started to become moralized --

I'm having trouble imagining any human society in which beliefs about government aren't moral.
posted by Miko at 6:11 AM on May 29, 2008


Try harder.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:17 AM on May 29, 2008


No, sorry, that was unnecessary snark.

Perhaps I explained it badly, but I'm way to busy to try and clarify at the moment, so never mind.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:18 AM on May 29, 2008


That's all right, I'm sure the ideas were more nuanced in the text. But I do think that the question of whether there is to be government at all is a moral question, as is the question then of what activities government should undertake, and on whose behalf. It seems clear these are all areas of moral concern.

I don't know any Chinese history, but I think that we have recently weathered an age of ideological extremes, perhaps in both directions. I don't think this was because government was concerned with morals, but because emotional polarization has been used as a tool to advance the ends of a few. Branding people as "evil" who oppose you is definitely not new under the sun, I agree (it has happened throughout American history) - but I'd say it's a rhetorical tactic used in times when polarization is deemed necessary, not necessarily something that is caused by the fact that governing is a moral act.
posted by Miko at 6:56 AM on May 29, 2008


five fresh fish: A straight pipeline from your wallet to theirs. And not for providing any service that you actually need, like healthcare: no, it's massive profit for providing services that are putting your own lives at greater risk. [...] Scary perspective: each and every American carries $330 000 dollars in government debt. (You can skip to the paragraph that begins "Tonight, I want to talk about a different matter." The big number: the USA is $99 trillion in debt.).

A guy on NPR yesterday noted that if the Dollar was trading with the Euro one for one, then a $135 barrel of oil would be about $80 a barrel and it occurred to me that the people who own the pipeline you mention have got us coming and going.
posted by notyou at 7:33 AM on May 29, 2008


But I do think that the question of whether there is to be government at all is a moral question

There's no question: any sizeable society requires a government. It's an organizational question, not a moral one.
posted by five fresh fish at 7:48 AM on May 29, 2008


The so-called liberal media continues its failure to report the news and ask questions. The McClellan story gets buried in the NYT on page A14. That progressives in Portland, OR tend to be upper middle class is news though and makes the front page.
posted by caddis at 7:59 AM on May 29, 2008


Scott McClellan talks to TODAY's Meredith Vieira [video | 15:11].
posted by ericb at 7:59 AM on May 29, 2008 [1 favorite]


Fox News Meme: Publisher ‘Got To’ McClellan, Forced Him To ‘Spice It Up A Little Bit’
Brad Blakeman, former White House staffer: “A publisher got to him and he waved a lot of money, I’m sure, in front of him and he took the bait and that is just unfortunate.”

Trent Duffy, former White House deputy press secretary: “It’s like the just turned over the pen to a publisher and signed his name at the bottom and got a big fat book contract.”

Bill O’Reilly: “McClellan is in it for the bucks, keeping in mind his publisher also distributes books by George Soros and other far left people.”

Ari Fleischer, former White House press secretary: “And I talked to Scott yesterday and Scott did tell me, that his editor, this is Scott’s words, ‘tweaked some things closely in the last few months.’ And I think what did happen, Bill, was the book was pretty much done and set and Scott went back in, and I think his editor wrote a lot of it.”

Newt Gingrich, former House speaker: “Here is this guy who want to sell books. He’s cut his ties to the administration and his publisher says, ‘Now look, you can spice it up a little bit.’”

Steve Doocy: “Apparently the publisher did some tweaking. How much? That’s a really good question.”
posted by ericb at 8:59 AM on May 29, 2008


CNN/ABC reporter: Corporate executives forced pro-Bush, pro-war narrative
posted by homunculus at 9:42 AM on May 29, 2008 [1 favorite]


There's no question: any sizeable society requires a government.

I think that statement alone carries moral assumptions. What do you mean by "requires?"
posted by Miko at 9:44 AM on May 29, 2008


George Bush Authorized the Leak of Valerie Wilson’s Identity
posted by homunculus at 10:23 AM on May 29, 2008


In Defense of Scott McClellan
posted by homunculus at 10:36 AM on May 29, 2008


I'll wait for Gannon's book.

Gannon/Guckert chimes in:
"What I hear about the book does not sound like the Scott McClellan I knew for two years. I can say without fear of contradiction, that I knew Scott better than any other White House correspondent or Washington reporter."
FYI -- an analysis of the "comings and goings" of Gannon into/out of the White House (2003 - 2005).
posted by ericb at 10:55 AM on May 29, 2008


BTW -- there are some who claim that McClellan is gay and was friends (or more) with Gannon/Guckert -- hence the extraordinary access Gannon had to the press room and areas beyond it in the White House.
posted by ericb at 11:03 AM on May 29, 2008


Miko: I think that statement alone carries moral assumptions. What do you mean by "requires?"

We've been having this discussion over in the Memorial Day thread. In short, in an anarchic environment, you need an army; hence you need taxes, a state, etc.

But this is a tragic necessity, rather than a moral good in itself.

posted by russilwvong at 11:55 AM on May 29, 2008


In short, in an anarchic environment, you need an army;

I don't really have the energy for another thread, but any number of traditional cultures disprove the thesis. Even when there isn't general peace and stability, which has been known to occur, a warrior culture can take care of much of the need for an army without taxes, a state, or any formal government. Government is a frequent solution to the problem of resource protection, but there are cultures which never evolved a formal state.
posted by Miko at 12:31 PM on May 29, 2008


I don't really have the energy for another thread--

Understood. Last response from me, and then you can have the last word if you like--I promise not to keep the thread going!

--any number of traditional cultures disprove the thesis.

But they've been largely overrun or displaced by modern states, precisely because they lacked the power to resist. (Off the top of my head I can't think of any examples of traditional, premodern societies surviving today--I'm guessing there may be a few which survive due to their geographic isolation.)
posted by russilwvong at 12:53 PM on May 29, 2008


But they've been largely overrun or displaced by modern states, precisely because they lacked the power to resist.

In most cases, but that just supports my argument that the choice to implement a government is a moral choice. It is morals that create the very idea that one's own people and resources should be defended against others, under what conditions, and by what means.

(Off the top of my head I can't think of any examples of traditional, premodern societies surviving today--I'm guessing there may be a few which survive due to their geographic isolation.)

Yes. Not only because of geographic isolation, but because the formation of a state isn't a necessary component of people living together in groups, though it's certainly become a common one. Historically/anthropologically, states seem to form in response to certain sets of conditions, which aren't always in effect even where geographical isolation is not a factor. States didn't exist for most of human history, and the choice to transition to a state-based social structure definitely has (had) moral dimensions.

Anyway, thanks for the last word.
posted by Miko at 1:09 PM on May 29, 2008


precisely because they lacked the power to resist.

Even more last word: Sometimes it's just because they had no resource that the developed states wanted and thus were left alone.
posted by Miko at 1:11 PM on May 29, 2008


Off the top of my head I can't think of any examples of traditional, premodern societies surviving today--I'm guessing there may be a few which survive due to their geographic isolation.

There are traditional, premodern societies in the highlands of New Guinea, and also in the Andaman & Nicobar Islands - between India & Thailand. The latter have a habit of killing anybody who dares set foot on their islands, and have almost completely resisted all efforts at contact, even refusing to accept goods left on beaches for them (the usual kinds of things, metal knives, buckets, mirrors etc).

Previous post on the tribes of the Andaman & Nicobar Islands.
posted by UbuRoivas at 2:43 PM on May 29, 2008


The island is presently populated by very nearly a thousand different tribal groups and a near-equivalent number of separate languages, which makes New Guinea the most linguistically diverse area in the world [...] Large swathes of New Guinea are yet to be explored by scientists and anthropologists. The province of Irian Jaya or West Papua is home to an estimated 44 uncontacted tribal groups.
posted by UbuRoivas at 2:49 PM on May 29, 2008


More on how Corporate executives forced pro-Bush, pro-war narrative and then Network news anchors praise the job they did in the run-up to the war.
posted by caddis at 2:56 PM on May 29, 2008


CNN/ABC reporter: Corporate executives forced pro-Bush, pro-war narrative

Well, to be fair, this doesn't necessarily mean the media is in cahoots with the government as Glenn implies. The following about Donahue getting fired hints that it could have been motivated completely by ratings.

The report went on to outline a possible nightmare scenario where the show becomes "a home for the liberal antiwar agenda at the same time that our competitors are waving the flag at every opportunity."

If the other networks were winning viewers by cheering on the war and waving the flag 24/7 then it becomes a tenuous position to ignore that and continue on a path of honest programming and reasoned discourse. That certainly sounds cynical and reprehensible given the subject matter but these are capitalists, after all.
posted by effwerd at 3:54 PM on May 29, 2008


Heh. Never ascribe media behavior to politics that can be better be ascribed to cowardice or a rush to a lowest common denominator.
posted by Artw at 4:00 PM on May 29, 2008


it could have been motivated completely by ratings

most assuredly, especially if you add "almost" before "completely."

it doesn't make it much less sad though. They are hurting America.
posted by caddis at 7:28 PM on May 29, 2008


McClellan speaks out on ‘Countdown’ with Keith Olbermann [video | 14:22].
posted by ericb at 8:15 PM on May 29, 2008


I agree completely. Just wanted to point out that there's no need for conspiracy when there's profits at stake. It's only nitpicking, really. I thought this...

As people like Jessica Yellin, Katie Couric, Phil Donahue and Scott McClellan are making clear, these media outlets are controlled propaganda arms of the Government, of the political establishment generally. (my emphasis)

... was a bit much. I know what he means, though, so it's not a big deal. And, really, who can blame him with the Message Force Multipliers™ deployed by the Pentagon and so many former White House staffers now working as pundits?
posted by effwerd at 8:25 PM on May 29, 2008


Lawrence O’Donnell Humiliates Pat Buchanan
posted by homunculus at 10:27 PM on May 29, 2008


A week? That's generous. This will be forgotten tomorrow. Down the memory hole.... WHHOOOOOOSH!!!

Well, we're on "DAY 4" ... and McClellan is making the rounds. He's scheduled appearances on television for the weekend and next week. Looks like the "talking heads" are still talking about it. Heck, the Washington Post has three separate articles on McCllelan and his book today.
"There are not one, not two, but three major pieces on Scotty McClellan's book. There's the front page, above the fold, article titled 'McClellan Says Book's Tone Evolved: Aide-Turned-Critic Tells of Growing Disillusionment With Bush Administration.' On page 3, there's another article about the book titled, 'For Future White House Aides, Required Reading.' Then, there's Dana Milbank, who notes Scotty's ability to stay on message, a trick he learned from the Bushies he's now screwing:
'Bush loyalists watching Scott McClellan kick off his media tour yesterday must have felt a revulsion akin to Dr. Frankenstein's.

McClellan's former White House colleagues had built and trained the former press secretary to parrot their talking points, monotonously if not mindlessly, no matterwhat argument or fact stood in the way. Saddam Hussein was a grave threat. The war in Iraq was going well. Scooter Libby and Karl Rove didn't leak Valerie Plame's identity.

But now the McClellan monster is back -- and he's got a new set of talking points that attack the very people he was trained to defend. He's a bit thinner around the middle, and the sideburns are comically longer, but McClellan's famous fealty to his message is as stubborn as ever.'
...Also, McClellan will be doing a live Q&A with the Post at noon Eastern time today."
posted by ericb at 6:52 AM on May 30, 2008


So when do the court cases begin?

Not a court case, but a step in the right direction:
"Congressman Robert Wexler (D-FL) called for former White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan to appear before the House Judiciary Committee to testify under oath regarding the devastating revelations made in his new book on the Bush Administration’s deliberate efforts to mislead the American people into the Iraq War."*
posted by ericb at 7:17 AM on May 30, 2008


Eye To Eye With Katie Couric: Scott McClellan (CBS News) [video].
posted by ericb at 7:34 AM on May 30, 2008


U.S. News & World Report: McClellan Story Takes Sharper Political Turn
“‘The [McClellan] story took a markedly political turn yesterday. In a sign of the former aide's political transformation, he told interviewers that he is ‘intrigued’ by Sen. Barack Obama's presidential candidacy. ABC World News noted McClellan is ‘even considering voting for a Democrat.’ McClellan: ‘I'm intrigued by Senator Obama's message,’ but ‘I haven't made any decision.’ The statement was repeated almost verbatim in other interviews….the Los Angeles Times editorializes this morning that ‘the person who needs to respond to McClellan's charges is not George W. Bush but John McCain.’ McCain's ‘ideas on how and when to end the war matter more now than his vote to give the president the power to wage it. But voters should know whether he believes the invasion was a strategic mistake.’ Adds the Times, ‘If McCain wants to be taken seriously as a more honest, competent and moderate Republican than Bush, he's going to have to answer some of the questions he has avoided,’ dealing with the run-up to war and the White House's treatment of ‘dissenters.’”
posted by ericb at 7:40 AM on May 30, 2008


Jeff Gannon Discusses McClellan Book, Potential GOP Smears
"Michelangelo Signorile talked to fake news reporter/escort Jeff Gannon on his radio show yesterday about the GOP smear machine coming after Scott McClellan over his tell-all memoir and the possibility of attacking McClellan on gay rumors that have surfaced in the past.

Gannon said yesterday that he 'knew Scott [McClellan]better than any other White House correspondent or Washington reporter.' He didn't elaborate to Signorile on the context of that relationship, but suggested that attacks were coming and are fair play.

Writes Signorile: 'I found this odd, considering that Gannon has been outraged in the past at even the speculation about his own past, calling it horrible prying, and McClellan did get married in 2003, and Gannon, as reported back during his debacle, had sent McClellan a wedding card! You'd think he'd adamantly deny it -- as someone who claims to know McClellan -- and vehemently attack the speculation.'

Listen to it here."
posted by ericb at 10:35 AM on May 30, 2008


McClellan's Book Could Spell More Trouble For Libby... Others...
"House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-Mich.) said today that he plans to begin discussions with former White House press secretary Scott McClellan regarding his participation in a congressional hearing.

'I find Mr. McClellan's revelations about attempts to cover-up the Valerie Plame leak extremely troubling. Particularly disturbing is McClellan's assertion that he was specifically directed by Andy Card to 'vouch' for Scooter Libby after the investigation had begun, which, if true, could amount to obstruction of justice beyond that for which Mr. Libby has already been convicted,' said Conyers." [more]
posted by ericb at 12:51 PM on May 30, 2008 [1 favorite]


Perino Says White House Can Block McClellan From Testifying To Congress, But Won’t Say Whether It Will.
posted by ericb at 12:54 PM on May 30, 2008


MSNBC: White House Has Had A Copy Of McClellan’s Memoir For ‘At Least A Month’.
posted by ericb at 2:16 PM on May 30, 2008


McClellan apologizes to Richard Clarke for smearing him as press secretary.
posted by homunculus at 6:02 PM on May 30, 2008


CNN | Wolf Blitzer interview with Scott McClellan [video | 19:41].

CNN | Anderson Cooper interview with Scott McClellan [video | 20:18].
posted by ericb at 1:44 PM on May 31, 2008 [1 favorite]


McCain’s McClellan Nightmare
posted by homunculus at 12:11 PM on June 1, 2008


A week? That's generous. This will be forgotten tomorrow. Down the memory hole.... WHHOOOOOOSH!!!

Well, we're now on "DAY 6" and counting.
Meet the Press -- McClellan: Karl Rove should have been fired [video | 48:48].

MoveOn to McClellan: Donate the proceeds from book to war vets.

McClellan promises to donate portion of book profits to Iraq veterans.
posted by ericb at 2:08 PM on June 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


'We Are Going to Wipe Them out!' Gen. Ricardo Sanchez's memoirs contain a transcript from a bloodthirsty and over the top private speech by Bush.
posted by homunculus at 11:55 PM on June 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


McClellan Responds To Attacks: Critics ‘Trying to Shift The Focus’ Away From The Book’s ‘Key Themes’.
posted by ericb at 1:50 PM on June 2, 2008


Gen. Ricardo Sanchez: Bush Guilty of “Gross Incompetence and Dereliction of Duty”
posted by homunculus at 6:24 PM on June 2, 2008 [1 favorite]


McLellan on the Daily Show, bringing out the best in J. Stewart.
posted by COBRA! at 7:33 AM on June 3, 2008 [1 favorite]


starman on May 28: People will talk about this for a week, some will make a big deal of it, some will accuse him of just trying to sell some books, and then it will die down.

June 8: ‘White House Lawyers Are Concerned’ McClellan’s Book Will Reignite ‘The Valerie Plame Business.’
posted by ericb at 2:02 PM on June 8, 2008


McClellan to testify in CIA leak case -- "Former White House aide will appear before a House committee next week."
posted by ericb at 5:43 PM on June 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


My thanks to ericb for keeping this thread updated.
posted by malaprohibita at 9:50 AM on June 10, 2008


McClellan: White House Officials Blocked Intelligence Report, ‘Continue To Bury Their Heads In The Sand’.
posted by ericb at 10:08 AM on June 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


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