Bush’s Spying Scandal: the Spin

Digby got there before me, so I can make this short.
Monitoring mosques and Muslim areas for radioactivity, whether illegally or not, is a kind of spying which most Americans will approve of. Besides everything else, radiation monitoring is less intrusive than clandestine burglaries, electronic eavesdropping, or monitoring phone conversions.
Digby believes that the “leak” of information about this particular activity was engineered by Karl Rove, and I think he’s right. Of all the forms of illegal surveillance that there are, this is the least offensive, and the Rove team wants to make it the public face of the illegal NSA program .
Reasonable conservatives know that the real issues are quite different, but reasonable conservatives are not a significant voting bloc. The Bush-Rove team plans to win the battle for public opinion on this issue, and the Democratic Party’s historical failure or refusal to capitalize on Republican outrages tells us that it is entirely possible that once the dust has settled, Bush will not have been hurt at all.
UPDATE:
Media Matters has posted a 5,000-word piece on the Republican spin machine’s work on this issue: Top 12 media myths and falsehoods on the Bush administration’s spying scandal. This piece is a MUST READ.
It’s amazing how much disinformation they’ve succeeded in disseminating in a few days. These people are not going to give up, no matter what. Long ago Bush went beyond what any “honest conservative” could possibly support, but we’re not fighting against honest conservatives. We’re fighting against fanatics and paid operatives.
Players so far (listed at MM) include the LA Times, Brit Hume, Bill O’Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, Bay Buchanan, Matt Drudge, Kelly O’Donnell of NBC, Chris Matthews, Katie Couric, Brian Todd of CNN, Byron York and Rich Lowry of the National Review, Charles Krauthammer, Victoria Toensing on CNN, Newsmax, G. Gordon Liddy, John Fund of the Wall Street Journal, and William Kristol. Some of these people may be honestly mistaken, or hapless dupes, but the great majority of them are ideologues and operatives.

6 thoughts on “Bush’s Spying Scandal: the Spin

  1. You are right. As long as Bush can continue to sweep the Rowe issue under the rug, the better off he is because the public has a short memory.

  2. next comes the clever meme that paints the Dems in the corner
    remember “Cut and Run”
    this feels like Groundhog Day

  3. If this was likely to be the end of the story, you’d be right and bush would be relatively unharmed. But soon we’re going to start seeing lists of people who were monitored, and knowing republicans as we all do it’s hard to believe they resisted the urge to monitor their political enemies. It’s going to be tough convincing the American people that cindy Sheehan and John Kerry were off making dirty bombs in 2004.

  4. If this was likely to be the end of the story, you’d be right and bush would be relatively unharmed. But soon we’re going to start seeing lists of people who were monitored, and knowing republicans as we all do it’s hard to believe they resisted the urge to monitor their political enemies. It’s going to be tough convincing the American people that cindy Sheehan and John Kerry were off making dirty bombs in 2004.

  5. I just doubt the Democrats’ ability to capitalize on this. Even on the Iraq War itself, the Democrats run the risk of being pre-empted by Republicans like Hagel. The media, likewise, are giving this a pro-Republican spin as just a partisan kerfluffle.
    I’m adding the Media Matters link which fell out of this post when I first posted.

  6. John! Earlier today I asked Digby in his comments section to get his voice behind reform of usuary laws as an issue for dems in 06. Amazingly, he replied immediately and promised to write about it. I’m sure he will do a wonderful job knowing the work he puts into his opinions. It would be great if you would keep an eye on his blog and join the chorus. These credit card company rate changes, fees, bank fees and such effect a whole lot of potential voters. It is a real potential, I believe.
    From the small blogs to “Gods ears”; Atrios and Kos?

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