May 31, 2007

Memory Loss and the Immaculate Termination

The scandal over the firings of U.S. Attorneys for what appear to have been political considerations is not the stuff to fire the imaginations of most people. It is however, what may be the straw that finally breaks the back of the Bush Administration and ends its endemic corruption. Whatever its sex appeal however, it must be remembered that warping the neutrality of U.S. Attorneys through political pressure represents an assault on what is perhaps the fundamental underpining of American government: the rule of law. Worse, there are strong indications that the rationale behind using political considerations to retain or fire U.S. Attorneys is closely linked to efforts by the Republican Party to suppress the votes of typically Democratic constituencies.

The particulars of this scandal are both arcane and complex, but what is neither arcane nor complex is that staffers from the upper ranks of the Department of Justice - from Attorney General Alberto Gonzales down to some of his closest aides - are clearly working dilligently to obscure the truth and avoid blame. Driving this point home are the two videos below. The first is Jon Stewart doing his customarily excellent job of speaking truth to power through humor on The Daily Show (courtesy of Crooks and Liars), and the second (hat tip to Blue Herald) takes a look at the utterly ridiculous level of memory loss the public is being asked to accept on the part of officials from the "party of personal responsibility."

For in-depth, chronological coverage of the U.S. Attorneys scandal, be sure to check out the the excellent archive of McClatchy Washington Bureau stories here.

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