Monday, April 07, 2008

The Hidden Hand

One of the LLWL* Gang accuses me of finding a way to blame the Republicans for just about every ill that befalls anyone, anytime. Bad economy? War in Iraq? Loss of prestige in the world -- look what those Republicans have done to us. Bad weather? Blame it on global warming, which is happening because the Republicans have ignored the warnings for so long. It's the GOP version of 6 Degrees of Separation -- find a way to blame the Republicans for any problem that happens to you, within six steps or less.

One of my favorite GOP bad guys to blame is Karl Rove, who has probably contributed more than almost anyone to the partisan mess our system of government has devolved. He's often the behind the scenes guy who has caused the problem. In fact, his dirty campaign tricks, which were later engrafted to become Administration policy by political manipulation, has in large part contributed to the dysfunctional logjam in Congress. By permanently dividing the parties, the Administration has effectively prevented government from functioning on a perpetual basis. It's the unofficial way to flush the government down the toilet.

Based upon Rove's machinations during the Bush campaign with respect to McCain (e.g., the rumors that he fathered an illegitimate black child), you would expect McCain to distance himself from the sleeze-master. Instead, he embraces him for the upcoming fall election. Mehlman, Rove boost McCain campaign. Not a surprise to me, since I don't credit McCain with any scruples or integrity.

The hidden hand of Rove in the McCain campaign is beginning to show, as is noted by Steve Benen of The Carpetbagger Report, in McCain’s ‘bio tour’ and Karl Rove’s ethics:

For example, Marc Ambinder noted yesterday that John McCain’s “bio tour” and Rove’s advice for McCain seem to coincide quite nicely. Rove was asked in mid-February during a Q&A at the University of Pennsylvania what he would advise McCain to do. Rove said:

“McCain needs to focus on defining himself. First and more important, McCain needs to understand that no one in the country really knows who the guy is. He’s a war hero and ran for president eight years ago. But they don’t know a lot about him. He needs to seize the opportunity to reintroduce himself. […]

“He should take a biographical tour to the places in the country that have made him who he is. Go to the Naval Academy and talk about the values he learned there. Then he should go to Pensacola, Florida and Corpus Christi, Texas where he was trained as a naval aviator, and talk from the heart and the call to service. Go to Meridian, Mississippi and Jacksonville, Florida and talk about what he learned about leadership commanding the largest naval air squadron in the United States. He should go to wherever it was that he first stepped foot back in the United States after the Vietnam War and meet with his POW buddies and talk about what he learned about character when he sat in that cell in hell. And he should give a speech in Sedona, Arizona and talk about the people and places in his hometown that affected him.”

And what has McCain spent the last week doing? Well, let’s see, McCain made appearances in Meridian, Pensacola, the Naval Academy, and Prescot, Arizona (which is near Sedona), all as part of a “biographical tour to the places in the country that have made him who he is.”

And then of course, Rove does a Rove and mentions the tour in a complimentary way in his role as "Journalist." As Benen notes:

But according to Nexis transcript I pulled up this morning, Rove was on Fox News this week praising the idea of the tour and heralding its success.

“[McCain] is where he is because the focus is on where the controversy is, and the controversy’s on the Democratic side. So he’s very smartly using the time to both get himself organized and to begin to lay some big meta- themes, some big sort of — you know, a firmament, foundation underneath his candidacy, for example, starting with his “biography tour,” which I think is coming off — it looks like it’s starting off pretty well and it looks like it could come off in a way that will help add to the knowledge that the American people have about him.”

In other words, Rove went on national television to praise his own idea, and neglected to disclose that he’s offered McCain advice.

What else would he do? He's Rove. This is the man who bugged his own office while he was working on an election in 1986 & then claimed the Democrats did it. See Rove's dirty tricks: Let us count the ways.

* LLWL = Ladies Lawyers Who Lunch (a/k/a, my officemates)

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