Washington loves farce the way Vienna loves the waltz. It once extravagantly inflated a sex act into the impeachment of a president, and it has now reduced the momentous debacle of the Iraq war into a question of what Rove or someone else said to a reporter on the phone. Soon, the question will turn on whether Rove or others actually cited Plame by name and whether the president’s oath to fire anyone who identified Plame as a CIA operative applies to someone who just mentioned her job title. It will all depend on what “is” is or, to put it another way, whether Bush will concede that he inhaled.
None of this matters — not really. The persistent criminalization of politics does no one any good. This is a parody of Clausewitz. He said war is the continuation of politics by other means. Now, we have special prosecutors as the continuation of politics by other means. The New York Times called for one and now, as a result, its own reporter is in jail. —Richard Cohen —Rove Isn’t the Real Outrage (Washington Post (will expire))
I don’t usually blog politics, unless there’s an obvious rhetoric or media angle to the item, but when reporters start going to jail for doing their job, it’s definitely blogworthy. Plus, Cohen’s use of “farce” attracted my attention.