June 7, 2016 / by emptywheel

 

Posts

Pope Keeps Blair Out of Heaven because of Iraq

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emptywheel

Via Cannonfire, I see that Pope former-Nazi has finally done something worthwhile with his position: he told the Poodle that God meant it about that commandment that, Thou shalt not kill.

Tony Blair yesterday used his last official foreign engagement beforeleaving office to tell Pope Benedict he wanted to become a RomanCatholic, a Vatican source said last night.

But, in talks lasting more than half an hour, the outgoing PrimeMinister was left

Cheney’s Method

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emptywheel

There’s a remarkable paragraph close to the start of Barton Gellman and Jo Becker’s story on Cheney today:

Cheney is not, by nearly every inside account, the shadow president ofpopular lore. Bush has set his own course, not always in directionsCheney preferred. The president seized the helm when his No. 2 steeredtoward trouble, as Bush did, in time, on military commissions.

And While We’re at It, Let’s Take Away Their Security Clearance

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emptywheel

Mimikatz already posted Rahm’s first response to Cheney’s wicked theories that he is a branch of government unto himself. And mcjoan has posted his second response.

House Democratic Caucus Chairman Rahm Emanuel issued the followingstatement regarding his amendment to cut funding for the Office of theVice President from the bill that funds the executive branch.

Heffelfinger, NAIS, and the USA Purge

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emptywheel

At a hearing before the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs this week, Thomas Heffelfinger got asked some questions about how the USA Purge related to his work–and that of Chiara, Charlton, Iglesias, McKay, and Bogden before they were fired. In his testimony, Heffelfinger noted that those USAs on NAIS who were fired were not just on the subcommittee, they were leaders on it.

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The Next Four-Branch Presidency

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emptywheel

Since Fred Thompson got into the Presidential race in a big way, I’ve increasingly been getting this creepy feeling. I keep thinking: when was the last time we had a charismatic (if ugly, in this case) candidate who knows nothing about policy and is even less interested in taking a stand on policy, who seems to be hiring the right advisors, but who himself, still seems to be Bush league.

Shorter Bush: I Wrote It in Invisble Ink

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emptywheel

Kagro X says almost all that needs to be said about BushCo’s claims that Bush intended to exempt he and Cheney from rules on classification. I’ll come back later to expand on Kagro’s point about the insta-declassification theory of leaking Plame’s identity. But for now, I’d like to make a teeny tiny point.

Sidney’s Imperial Presidency

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emptywheel

Sidney Blumenthal and I were apparently making the same point at about the same time. Not long after I argued, on a panel on the Imperial Presidency, that there are those within the Administration who believe in the rule of law and can therefore be mobilized against it, Sidney was finishing up his column making that point in much more comprehensive fashion.

In private, Bushadministration sub-Cabinet officials who have been instrumental informulating

Mercer’s Non-Move

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emptywheel

Bill Mercer’s announcement that he’s stepping down is much more interesting than the other clique resignations for several reasons (thanks to TeddySF for the heads up). First, his “resignation” does not mean he leaves DOJ; rather, he simply avoids a nomination hearing. And that’s a nomination hearing that would have been challenging, to say the least.

William W.

Hold > Get Agency to Answer That, Part Two

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emptywheel

You may recall a theory I postulated a few weeks back that when Libby called Robert Grenier on June 11, 2003, he asked questions he already knew the answers to. He wasn’t really looking for information. Rather, he was hoping to get the information from a source he could use publicly; he was trying to get certain information about the Wilsons out while hiding Dick Cheney’s original source for the information

Shorter Fitz: Send Libby to Jail

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emptywheel

Fitzgerald submitted his response to Libby’s request for bond pending appeal today. Basically, it reiterates the points he made in last week’s hearing on the issue, though in the written form that allows some snark.

Congress Doesn’t Need New Laws

The filing starts by undercutting Libby’s Appointments Clause complaint with a simple reading of the law.

Remarkably, defendant’s application, while suggesting that the AAG might have addressed the urgent conflict-of-interest issue by opting to

CIPA Fun, One

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emptywheel

So Jeff Lomonaco and I were trying to figure out the best place for us to meet face to face after having emailed obsessively on the Plame case for two years. We thought of the best place to meet: at Prettyman Courthouse so we could read through the CIPA filings submitted last year in the case.

Cohen Tries to Make Sense

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emptywheel

I deliberately avoided Richard Cohen’s latest nonsense of the other day. But then watertiger sent me a tidbit from Cohen’s online chat today (dirty trick, watertiger), and I got sucked in. First, let me start with this passage:

Boston: If Bush felt he needed to respond to Wilson, why not do it openly, on-the-record, based on the merits?

Richard Cohen:

Sentelle, Henderson, Tatel

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emptywheel

It appears that we’ve got our panel for Scooter’s motion for release pending appeal–and we lucked out. Judges Sentelle, Henderson, and Tatel appear to be the panel–the same three judges that heard Judy’s and Cooper’s appeal on their subpoena. Sentelle is no liberal, not by any shade. But his decision on the appeal was reasonable.

Curbing the Imperial Presidency

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emptywheel

Here is my presentation from the Take Back American panel on “Curbing the Imperial Presidency.” I’m sure it didn’t come out this way. But it might be close.

One year after the publication of his book The ImperialPresidency, Arthur Schlesinger wrote the following for a column in Harpers:

We hear a great deal today aboutthe presumably grim consequences of the impeachment of the President—an endlesspublic trial, a people divided, a government paralyzed, a

Ralston’s Deposition

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emptywheel

Oh, this is getting good. As part of his interim report on RNC emails, Waxman released Susan Ralston’s testimony before the committee. Reading the deposition, it becomes pretty clear why Tom Davis was trying to warn Rove of the danger of Ralston’s testimony. Because even what she was willing to testify to makes it clear that Rove is in some deep legal trouble.

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