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Sunday, March 18, 2007

David Broder is correct:

The Dean writes:
You have to feel a twinge of sympathy now for the Bush appointees who suddenly find unsympathetic Democratic chairmen such as Henry Waxman, John Conyers, Patrick Leahy and Carl Levin investigating their cases. Even if those appointees are scrupulously careful about their actions now, who knows what subpoenaed memos and e-mails in their files will reveal about the past?
Don't you feel a twinge of sympathy for the Bush appointees that violated the law, used the government for partisan gain, gave sweetheart contracts to cronies, overrode experts at NASA, the EPA, and the FDA?

Sure you do.

Also, the Dean cautions against investigating too much:
Accountability is certainly important, but Democrats must know that people were really voting for action on Iraq, health care, immigration, energy and a few other problems. Investigations are useful, but only legislation on big issues changes lives.
Absolutely. Instead of finding out what's been going on, far better to write "big issues" legislation that will get stuck in the need-60-votes Senate or vetoed by Bush.



35 comments

I want investigations day and night, 24/7, David. I want arrests, frog-marching, and weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth; I want subpoenas; I want hearings; I want C-Span on 20 channels to cover all of it--every minute of the gory, gruesome details, David. You want to know why? Because I want you to have to write your insipid columns decrying it, so that, at some point, journalists will be so embarrassed at your obvious dementia, they'll stop asking you to come on and wax pathetic as you always do, in solemn and somber and serious tones, as if you care about anything but your own fading relevance, as if you are the "dean" of anything except dogma. That's what I want, David.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 6:42 AM  

Funny - I seem to recall conservatives saying over and over that "thumerkin people" agree with them on "the big issues" and that the only reason the Democrats won in November was because of incompetence and corruption.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 7:03 AM  

I feet something but I'm pretty sure it's not sympathy. It could be Schadenfreude though.

By Blogger yank in london, at 3/18/2007 7:06 AM  

Actually, I'm pretty sure my main motivation when I cast my vote in November was "stop abuse of power by the Executive Branch". I even listed it as my most important issue (as a write-in) when asked by Zogby (or was it Harris?) what the most important "issue" was to me.

Seems a bit convenient that Republicans say a vote is for "bipartisanship" only when they lose the election.

By Blogger whispers, at 3/18/2007 7:26 AM  

Funny - I seem to recall conservatives saying over and over that "thumerkin people" agree with them on "the big issues" and that the only reason the Democrats won in November was because of incompetence and corruption.
By Anonymous - 6:03 AM


I'm pretty sure I remember the GOP mantra articulated by George Will that although a new party was in charge, the American people elected "conservatives" last November.

By Anonymous Gimlet, at 3/18/2007 7:37 AM  

It is not like these appointees failed to attend on of Sally Quinn's cocktail parties or otherwise trashed Broder's house.

By Blogger TallIndian, at 3/18/2007 7:46 AM  

Mr. Broder. Your assignment for the remainder of your career is the following.

Compare and contrast:

Rampant abuses of power, lies involving matters of war, and coverup pertaining to reckless outing of CIA agents

vs.

Failed land deal in which the accused lost money and re-arranging the chairs in the WH travel office.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 7:57 AM  

Investigations are useful, but only legislation on big issues changes lives.

Yeah, because Watergate changed no lives.

By Anonymous ahab, at 3/18/2007 7:58 AM  

shorter Broder: "The Bush Administration: Not Breaking The Law With Impunity Anymore!"

By Blogger michael, at 3/18/2007 7:59 AM  

Broder trashed our national dialogue, and it wasn't his dialogue.

By Anonymous RT, at 3/18/2007 8:14 AM  

I feel sorry for Charles Manson. Even if he is scrupulously careful not to orchestrate any more murders, who knows what incidents from his past unsympathetic people will bring up now?

By Blogger Notorious P.A.T., at 3/18/2007 8:20 AM  

All I can say is that I read Broder's bullshit column today and thought - "Investigations don't help change lives? Tell that to the soldiers at Walter Reed."

I think the Dean needs to be put out to pasture, because he seems to be consciously choosing to live in a different reality than the rest of us.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 9:31 AM  

"They will pay the price for the temporary breakdown in the system of checks and balances that occurred between 2001 and this year -- when the Republican Congress forgot its responsibility to hold the executive branch accountable."

That's Broder, one sentence later. What part of that isn't true?

What am I missing here, people? Hell, the "twinge of sympathy" comment might've been ironic.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 10:38 AM  

I think Broder has one small but significant point that the Democrats should remember, keep their legislative agenda as the prime focus. The Dems still have to govern and still make the gov't run...

Much like investigate Gonzales but legislatively fix the Eavesdropping violations and US Attorney interm appointments. Fix the Medicare Prescripition Drug Plan, seriously think of what the hell has to be done about the deficit. Ditto for earmark abuse... Keep other Dems in line. etc...

However Broder is also being slightly delusional, given the high handness, bullying, arrogance and sheer incomptence of the Bush Administration for the past six years with little or no oversight. The whole US Attorneys firings fiasco is just an example of this in a nutshell. The Dems thought they would hang Gonzales over the FISA violations, but he and his staff gave them this scandal on a plate.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 10:47 AM  

It drives me crazy - when someone warns the Democrats against investigating too much, because it will look like a "partisan witch hunt," it is making the fundamental assumption that the only reason for investigation is to make Republicans look bad, and that investigations are only useful as political tools. When people say this, they never allow for the possibility that, perhaps, the investigations might REVEAL WRONGDOING on the part of the GOP, in which case investigations are completely justified, and in fact are entirely necessary.

Just because the Republicans abused the power doesn't mean that the Democrats should be afraid to use it.

PS: When the Republicans abused the power, they were subsequently very successful.

By Anonymous john, at 3/18/2007 11:26 AM  

I know. It's irony. David Broder is channeling Colbert. Read all his opinion pieces again--they are a PARODY of the way a clueless Washington DC press corps dean writes! Oh what genius...and we all missed it.

By Anonymous JoyousMN, at 3/18/2007 11:31 AM  

Someone said: "The Dems still have to govern and still make the gov't run..."

This is like where you have bank robbers holding up a bank and someone says: "Let's not focus so much on arresting the robbers and locking them up, we still have a bank to run."

For Christ's sake, you can't RUN the govt when one party has turned into a Mafia and is in the process of looting the place.

I think first priortity is getting rid of the looters who are destroying our army, our Constitution, and our Courts and are robbing our Treasury. That is the only first step the Dems can take if they want to "run" the govt. We have to arrest an prosecute up the criminals and thieves in our midst FIRST before we can get back to "business as usual".

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 11:34 AM  

Corruption named as key issue by voters in exit polls - CNN.com":

But when asked which issue was extremely important to their vote, more voters said corruption and ethics in government than any other issue, including the war, according to national exit polls

<>

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 11:35 AM  

Let's not lock up the rapists and murderers and thieves who have destroyed our country (all of whom happen to have an "R" next to their name)...

I mean, gee, we wouldn't want to be accused of a "partisan witch hunt" or anything...

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 11:37 AM  

Link got buggered. Here's the URL for the above CNN exit poll story: http://www.cnn.com/2006/POLITICS/11/07/election.exitpolls/

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 11:46 AM  

Accountability is for little people.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 11:57 AM  

I don't remember David Broder expressing sympathy when the GOP controlled congress issued 2000 subpoenas to Clinton administration officials. He and the WP editorial page cheered on the witchunts.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 12:04 PM  

Mr. Broder is afraid, very afraid -- and it is sweet indeed. I say, bring on the corruption-hunts! (I like witches, so I won't say witch-hunt.)

By Anonymous djmm, at 3/18/2007 12:24 PM  

First, the Republicans are supposed to be the party of "personal responsibility." Presumably, that means taking responsibility, and the hit, for all those things you did, even when you thought you could get away with it (what crook doesn't think they can get away with it?)
Second, investigations and trials are needed to create a disincentive to recurrences of the same behavior. Those who think they'll get a free pass will do it again. How many Bushies were with Nixon or Reagan, and their many indicted cronies?
Thirdly, it's very likely that the Democrats will be unable to move their legislative agenda without discrediting the party holding the executive branch. This may happen either through the weight of public opinion or by having that party turned out of power in the next election. This is the political part of these hearings, but not one that the Democrats invented. It's an opportunity that the right wing created for them.
Finally, as far as the USA scandal is concerned, investigations look like a matter of survival for the Democrats. As it appears that the Bush executive branch was undifferentiated from the RNC and was using as much of its power (legally or not) as possible to ensure Republican victories, the only way for the Democrats to ensure that they will not suffer through the same corruption-induced handicaps in the next election is through investigations that will strip the administration of that power.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/18/2007 12:41 PM  

I have a question I would LOVE to ask David Broder:

What would he say of a columnist who had written a similar column in 1973? That the Democratic Congress shouldn't be wasting its time investigating a third-rate burglary, and should be passing legislation instead?

Such a columnist would have rightly been judged the Fool of the Decade.

Fast-forward to 2007. John Dean - who knows a thing or two about Nixon and Watergate - has repeatedly said that Bush's scandals are worse than Nixon's. He even wrote a book to that effect.

So... if a 1973 columnist would be a fool for dismissing Congressional investigations into Nixon's dirty laundry, what does that say about Broder in 2007?

By Blogger michael, at 3/18/2007 12:42 PM  

>Michael wrote:
>So... if a 1973 columnist >would be a fool for >dismissing Congressional >investigations into Nixon's >dirty laundry, what does >that say about Broder in >2007?

Once a fool, always a fool.

By Blogger Laurie Mann, at 3/18/2007 1:21 PM  

"You're gonna fit right in. Everyone in here is innocent, you know that? Heywood, what you in here for?"

"Didn't do it. Lawyer ****ed me."

Welcome to Shawshank.

By Anonymous dontkillwhitey, at 3/18/2007 1:41 PM  

"What am I missing here, people? Hell, the 'twinge of sympathy' comment might've been ironic."

Broderilla has NO sense of irony and, for that matter, he lacks its first cousin, a sense of humor. Broderilla is just a pompous, self important package of stale, fetid air.

By Anonymous Helena Montana, at 3/18/2007 3:58 PM  

The comment cited is, in and of itself, an insane comment to make. But it is somewhat out of context. He's not showing them sympathy per se, so much as he's placing a lot of the blame for their actions on the congress that let them get away with it.

Believe me, i'm not here to defend anyone in this criminalized administration, but to Broder's article, an analogy would be this. If your boss continually tells you it's ok to take 2 hour lunches, leave at noon every Friday, and continually screw up everything you do, only to have a new boss come in and say he's going to fire anyone who ever took a 2 hour lunch, left at noon on Friday, and screwed up everything they ever did, well.....that would kinda suck.

By Anonymous ickabod, at 3/18/2007 4:20 PM  

You have to feel a twinge of sympathy now for the Bush appointees....

Well, no. No I don't.

By Blogger Rueful, at 3/18/2007 5:09 PM  

Ickabod, sorry but your analogy does NOT hold. We are not talking about workplace rules which can be changed whenever. We are talking about the law, and the Constitution.

A more apt analogy would be if you had a boss that told you it was OK to use creative accounting - in fact DEMANDED you use creative accounting - so that everyone (especially him) gets bonuses each quarter. Then the new boss comes in and turns in everyone who played ball with the old boss... not because of some arbitrary workplace rule, but because THEY BROKE THE LAW.

By Blogger michael, at 3/18/2007 5:15 PM  

Michael, Ok, whatever. I hardly think 40 hour work weeks or 8 hour days qualify as "arbitrary work rules", but we'll go with your analogy. As an aside, i think your analogy is worse in that you go so far as to suggest the wrongdoers were only following orders. But like i say, whatever.

Your analogy or mine, the point is there was more to Broder's comment than what one would glean from the post above. I clicked on the article because i was so pissed off over the comment that i wanted to send him an email - not that he would have cared what i had to say. But when i read the article in full, i realized the comment wasn't as horrendous as it was made out to be here, so i didn't bother with the email.

By Anonymous ickabod, at 3/18/2007 6:41 PM  

I think Broder is a dick, regardless of nice Bush appointees who get goo on their reputations because Waxman and others are giving payback. I love payback.

By Anonymous dichiara, at 3/18/2007 6:48 PM  

Someday, we will learn that David Broder was on their payroll. There's no other explanation.

By Anonymous Veritas78, at 3/18/2007 9:50 PM  

Start a ratfucking campaign.

Get in their infrastructure as a low level employ and wiretap them.

Fight fire with fire.
Then Broder's secrets will be known to all.
-Mr.M

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/19/2007 1:02 AM  

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