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Host: Keith Olbermann
If there couldn't be a bigger opening spiel, this is it. "Joining the obstruction of justice." Clip of Bush out of context thinking of a response to a question. Potential pardon - an actual Presidential power - shocker! Did Mister Cheney tell Mr. Bush to do this? The Democrats don't know where to start. Conyers and Waxman pictures. Former Vice President Gore (aka god) versus the St. Rudy. Plug for Speshul Komment. I think two bottles are in order.
#5: A "clear majority" of American disagree with the commutation. The President threw away any reason for Americans to believe he is an honest man. ANOTHER plug for the Speshul Komment. A real clip of the President making a statement on Mr. Libby's convinction. Clips of the always moderate media fighting with Press Secretary Tony Snow. The Vice President - SHOCKINGLY - was the last person to meet with the President before he made the decision to commute the sentence of Mr. Libby. Keithy admits that "Mister" Libby never requested the commutation - gasp! So what is Olbersturmfuhrer saying here? It was a favor but Libby didn't ask for it? It was just understood? Hm? Time to call in the Wolffe Man. Great insight about commutations in the White House versus those when he was Governor of Texas. Some how this ties into Iraq. Keith mentions the esteemed non partisan Conyers and Waxman of the House who are going to hold hearings on said commutation. Is this going to bring together the American people
#4: Olby pretends to play "truth squad." Yeah, this is the no spin zone folks. The administration lies about lies and protects lies as it smears liars. Er wait. They aren't liars. Jabba is too fast for me. Olbermann, baffled at the fact that no one was charged in the "leak." Mr. No One Has This Better Covered Slippery Shuster comes in to help his Great Leader. We all know how reliable Slippery is with his "sources." Remember when Speaker Hastert was going to resign? Slippery reminds us that what "Libby" was convicted of were "crimes." Sacrament! YOU DON'T SAY. I thought he was convicted of being a member of the eeeeeeevil administration. No mention behind the real person who outed this "covert" agent, Richard Armitage. Schuster opines that the administration was fearful that Libby was a "ticking time bomb" if he was in jail. What was he going to explode? All of those "lies" that you have already concluded are such? What in god's name are you talking about? Is this the epitome of a "journalist" inserting his opinion about things that have never been said as to be fact? I think so. Embarrassing.
#3: MORE SCOOTER LIBBY. Why did he not actually grant the pardon? Is there something nefarious behind the President leaving the actual conviction intact that Olby believes to his dying breath was warranted? Fat Ass quotes a passage from "Mister" Bush's autobiography where he says he would not replace a jury's verdict. Well, Braniac, did he do that? Did he pardon "Scooter" Libby? No. He didn't. He commuted his jail sentence while leaving the fines, FELONY conviction and probation intact. What is so hard for you to understand about this? The holy jury that convicted Mr. Libby did not give him his sentence, the JUDGE did. Who appoints these judges? The President. Who confirms? The Senate. Who has the constitutional right to commute sentences and pardon people? The President. See the balance of power here? Or does it not play into your vast right wing conspiracy handbook you picked up ThinkProgress? Desperate to find ways to nail the administration, Olby brings in the Perfessor regarding immunity for Mr. Libby so he can testify against the eeeeeeeeeeevil President
Dick Cheney Bush. The Perfessor, who learns from his puppeteer, starts saying Dick Dick DICK DICK. The penis Olbsession has become pervasive. Olby thinks there is a mere "appearance of a quid pro quo." Perfessor surprisingly attacks B.J. Clinton for abusing his pardon power. This will not go down on OlbyPlanet. I doubt we'll see the Perfessor for awhile. Perfessor drops impeachment as a possibility to remedy the appearance of abuse of power. Great Thanks. Another plug.
#2: The Bush Legacy. Regurgitated video from HQ and Andrea Mitchell. Olby, historian, consitutional expert and everything but God, declares President Bush the worst ever.
Keeping Tabs: God of convenient truths. Al Gore received an advanced copy of the final episode of The Sopranos. Wow. My heart skips a beat. Olby fumbles over a German Colonel's name. Someone has the same name as Olbermann! HAR HAR HAR! Plug again.
In the Media Matters minute, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe because his defense minister said something that most historians and veterans of the the Pacific theater in World War II would agree with - using nuclear weapons helped end the war. Would Constitutional expert and historian Oralmann like to opine on the possible casualties of invading the Japanese mainland? Doubtful. The defense minister resigned. What the hell Mr. Abe had to do with this is unclear to me. The guy was a member of his cabinet. He resigned. And....? I guess because he's a member of the same party that Koizumi (an ally of the United States) earns him the nod. OH. NOW I KNOW. It's because the Defense Minister said the war in Iraq was a mistake. So, without any evidence, we should infer he was dismissed rather than resign and that somehow leads all the way back to Mr. Abe. DUH. Silver: Duncan Hunter for supporting Ann Coulter after she was sandbagged on Chrissy Mathews show and maligned for an out of context comment. Everyone seems to think she called for John Edwards to be assassinated - WRONG. She said that if she wanted to say anything negative about him she should say that - just like Bill Maher did about Vice President Cheney and the MSM along with the Laughing Stagehand and lackeys missed. Blue Blog Source: AnAngryDakotaDemocrat. The gold: eeeeeeevil 'neo-con' and "publisher of the right-wing magazine Weekly Standard" for suggesting the reaction of Amb. Joseph Wilson was "ridiculous" along with thinking Americans are ridiculous for disagreeing with commutation. Apparently, this explains why no one ever buys a copy of the Weekly Standard. Hm, I happen to have a subscription! It also has a circulation of 83,000 copies a week. Not bad for a small, intellectual magazine that is above BathTub boy's higher level thinking. Perhaps your smear tactics, use of smear merchants and outright lies is why you continue to see yourself land in fourth place Mr. Edward "Solid Second" R. Olbermann. Blug Blog Source: Media Matters. Oh, and just because he needed one Fox "Noise" mention in there, he throws that in with Mr. Kistrol as he contributes to the network that destroys Olbermahn nightly. We needed one hilarious Fox Noise comment for the evening. Keep it up, Olby, maybe it'll pull you up to third.
Olbermann's book The book that bears Olbermann's collapsed to a humiliating, painful and otherwise embarrassing #256,400 on amazon.com - HA!, but "Culture Warrior" is #626. (It's that 2-for-$25 sale!) The OlbyTome managed to - wait - it didn't. It's still unranked at Barnes and Noble; O'Reilly's book is #1,178 there, and is one of the top five books of 2006 per Publishers Weekly. Tuesday's Hour of Spin managed a laughable and typical third place place finish in total viewers as well as that "money demo" Olbsession. Source. Tonight's MisterMeter reading: 15 [EXTREME!!!]
APPENDIX: Keith's Latest Speshul Education Komment
I didn't vote for him, an American once said, "But he's my president, and I hope he does a good job."
*cue eyebrow lift*
That - on this eve of the 4th of July - is the essence of this democracy, in 17 words. And that is what President Bush threw away yesterday in commuting the sentence of Lewis "Scooter" Libby. The man who said those 17 words - improbably enough - was the actor John Wayne. And Wayne, an ultra-conservative, said them, when he learned of the hair's-breadth election of John F. Kennedy instead of his personal favorite, Richard Nixon in 1960.
"I didn't vote for him but he's my president, and I hope he does a good job."
*cue second eyebrow lift*
The sentiment was doubtlessly expressed earlier, but there is something especially appropriate about hearing it, now, in Wayne's voice: The crisp matter-of-fact acknowledgement that we have survived, even though for nearly two centuries now, our Commander-in-Chief has also served, simultaneously, as the head of one political party and often the scourge of all others.
*brief pause, voice tone more forceful*
We as citizens must, at some point, ignore a president's partisanship. Not that we may prosper as a nation, not that we may achieve, not that we may lead the world -but merely that we may function.
But just as essential to the seventeen words of John Wayne, is an implicit trust-a sacred trust: That the president for whom so many did not vote, can in turn suspend his political self long enough, and for matters imperative enough, to conduct himself solely for the benefit of the entire Republic.
Our generation's willingness to state "we didn't vote for him, but he's our president, and we hope he does a good job," was tested in the crucible of history, and earlier than most.
And in circumstances more tragic and threatening. And we did that with which history tasked us.
We enveloped our President in 2001. And those who did not believe he should have been electedâ€”indeed those who did not believe he had been electedâ€”willingly lowered their voices and assented to the sacred oath of non-partisanship.
*sound angry, frustrated*
And George W. Bush took our assent, and re-configured it, and honed it, and shaped it to a razor-sharp point and stabbed this nation in the back with it.
*frustration growing, speaking more quickly*
Were there any remaining lingering doubt otherwise, or any remaining lingering hope, it ended yesterday when Mr. Bush commuted the prison sentence of one of his own staffers.
Did so even before the appeals process was complete; did so without as much as a courtesy consultation with the Department of Justice; did so despite what James Madison - at the Constitutional Convention - said about impeaching any president who pardoned or sheltered those who had committed crimes "advised by" that president; did so without the slightest concern that even the most detached of citizens must look at the chain of events and wonder: To what degree was Mr. Libby told: break the law however you wish - the President will keep you out of prison?
*look down, lips tight, powerful pause - PIVOT NOW*
In that moment, Mr. Bush, you broke that fundamental com-pact between yourself and the majority of this nation's citizens - the ones who did not cast votes for you. In that moment, Mr. Bush, you ceased to be the President of the United States. In that moment, Mr. Bush, you became merely the President of a rabid and irresponsible (furried eyebrow here) corner of the Republican Party. And this is too important a time, Sir, to have a commander-in-chief who puts party over nation.
This has been, of course, the gathering legacy of this Administration. Few of its decisions have escaped the stain of politics. The extraordinary Karl Rove has spoken of "a permanent Republican majority," as if such a thing - or a permanent Democratic majority - is not antithetical to that upon which rests: our country, our history, our revolution, our freedoms.
*switch back to camera 1*
Yet our Democracy has survived shrewder men than Karl Rove. And it has survived the frequent stain of politics upon the fabric of government. But this administration, with ever-increasing insistence and almost theocratic zealotry, has turned that stain into a massive oil spill.
The protection of the environment is turned over to those of one political party, who will financially benefit from the rape of the environment. The protections of the Constitution are turned over to those of one political party, who believe those protections unnecessary and extravagant and quaint.
The enforcement of the laws is turned over to those of one political party, who will swear beforehand that they will not enforce those laws. The choice between war and peace is turned over to those of one political party, who stand to gain vast wealth by ensuring that there is never peace, but only war.
And now, when just one cooked book gets corrected by an honest auditor, when just one trampling of the inherent and inviolable fairness of government is rejected by an impartial judge, when just one wild-eyed partisan is stopped by the figure of blind justice, this President decides that he, and not the law, must prevail.
*haughty voice, pivot again*
I accuse you, Mr. Bush, of lying this country into war.
I accuse you of fabricating in the minds of your own people, a false implied link between Saddam Hussein and 9/11.
I accuse you of firing the generals who told you that the plans for Iraq were disastrously insufficient.
I accuse you of causing in Iraq the needless deaths of 3,586 of our brothers and sons, and sisters and daughters, and friends and neighbors.
I accuse you of subverting the Constitution, not in some misguided but sincerely-motivated struggle to combat terrorists, but to stifle dissent.
I accuse you of fomenting fear among your own people, of creating the very terror you claim to have fought.
I accuse you of exploiting that unreasoning fear, the natural fear of your own people who just want to live their lives in peace, as a political tool to slander your critics and libel your opponents.
I accuse you of handing part of this Republic over to a Vice President who is without conscience, and letting him run roughshod over it.
And I accuse you now, Mr. Bush, of giving, through that Vice President, carte blanche to Mr. Libby, to help defame Ambassador Joseph Wilson by any means necessary, to lie to Grand Juries and Special Counsel and before a court, in order to protect the mechanisms and particulars of that defamation, with your guarantee that Libby would never see prison, and, in so doing, as Ambassador Wilson himself phrased it here last night, of becoming an accessory to the obstruction of justice.
When President Nixon ordered the firing of the Watergate special prosecutor Archibald Cox during the infamous "Saturday Night Massacre" on October 20th, 1973, Cox initially responded tersely, and ominously.
"Whether ours shall be a government of laws and not of men, is now for Congress, and ultimately, the American people."
President Nixon did not understand how he had crystallized the issue of Watergate for the American people.
It had been about the obscure meaning behind an attempt to break in to a rival party's headquarters; and the labyrinthine effort to cover-up that break-in and the related crimes.
*look up from careful thought and reading*
And in one night, Nixon transformed it.
Watergate-instantaneously-became a simpler issue: a President overruling the inexorable march of the law of insisting-in a way that resonated viscerally with millions who had not previously understood - that he was the law.
Not the Constitution. Not the Congress. Not the Courts. Just him.
*Silence. Powerful pause and look downard. Pivot*
Just - Mr. Bush - as you did, yesterday.
*eyebrows raised again*
The twists and turns of Plame-Gate, of your precise and intricate lies that sent us into this bottomless pit of Iraq; your lies upon the lies to discredit Joe Wilson; your lies upon the lies upon the lies to throw the sand at the "referee" of Prosecutor Fitzgerald's analogy. These are complex and often painful to follow, and too much, perhaps, for the average citizen.
But when other citizens render a verdict against your man, Mr. Bush-and then you spit in the faces of those jurors and that judge and the judges who were yet to hear the appeal-the average citizen understands that, Sir.
*growing angry again*
It's the fixed ballgame and the rigged casino and the pre-arranged lottery all rolled into one - and it stinks. And they know it. *forceful anger*
Nixon's mistake, the last and most fatal of them, the firing of Archibald Cox, was enough to cost him the presidency. And in the end, even Richard Nixon could say he could not put this nation through an impeachment.
It was far too late for it to matter then, but as the decades unfold, that single final gesture of non-partisanship, of acknowledged responsibility not to self, not to party, not to â€œbase,â€ but to country, echoes loudly into history. Even Richard Nixon knew it was time to resign
*look up again from deep reading*
Would that you could say that, Mr. Bush. And that you could say it for Mr. Cheney. You both crossed the Rubicon yesterday. Which one of you chose the route, no longer matters. Which is the ventriloquist, and which the dummy (emphasis here), is irrelevant.
But that you have twisted the machinery of government into nothing more than a tawdry machine of politics, is the only fact that remains relevant.
It is nearly July 4th, Mr. Bush, the commemoration of the moment we Americans decided that rather than live under a King who made up the laws, or erased them, or ignored themâ€”or commuted the sentences of those rightly convicted under them - we would force our independence, and regain our sacred freedoms.
We of this time - and our leaders in Congress, of both parties - must now live up to those standards which echo through our history: Pressure, negotiate, impeach - get you, Mr. Bush, and Mr. Cheney, two men who are now perilous to our Democracy, away from its helm.
For you, Mr. Bush, and for Mr. Cheney, there is a lesser task. You need merely achieve a very low threshold indeed. Display just that iota of patriotism which Richard Nixon showed, on August 9th, 1974.
*mouth open wide*
And give us someone - anyone - about whom all of us might yet be able to quote John Wayne, and say, "I didn't vote for him, but he's my president, and I hope he does a good job."
*look down, saddened*