Been watching Fox News again, haven't you? What did I tell you about that, man? Oh sure, they're fair and balanced, if by "fair" you mean White Anglo-Saxon Protestant and if by "balanced" you mean balancing the truth with outright lies.
Here's an example, stolen from Think Progress:
Washington Post editorial: “The trial has provided…no evidence that she was, in fact, covert.” [Washingotn Post, 3/7/07]There's the partisan hackocracy take on it. Mort Kondracke, Sean Hannity, Robert Novak, and Brit Hume all say she wasn't covert.
Mort Kondracke: “I frankly don’t think since Valerie Plame was not a covert officer that there was a crime here.” [Fox, 3/9/07]
Sean Hannity: “She did not meet the criteria, in any way, shape, matter or form as a covert agent.” [Fox, 3/6/07]
Robert Novak: “No evidence that she was a covert agent was ever presented to the jury.” [Fox, 3/6/07]
Brit Hume: “Whether the woman was covert, Valerie Plame was covert within the meaning of the law, remains at this point, still unclear. Unlikely she was.” [Fox, 3/6/07]
Victoria Toensing: “Plame was not covert. She worked at CIA headquarters and had not been stationed abroad within five years of the date of Novak’s column.” [Washington Post, 2/18/07]
(Novak and the Washington Post share the distinction of being technically correct, but incredibly wrong -- Yes, it's true, the Libby trial didn't provide any evidence that Plame was covert, but then again, jurors were instructed to ignore Plame's status as irrelevant and so whether she was covert or not wasn't even discussed. The trial didn't provide any evidence that Jimi Hendrix is dead either...is that still an open question too? Probably not, but in the Libby trial it's just as relevant.)
Now where is Kondracke, Hannity, Novak and Hume getting their information? Who the fuck knows? You want my opinion? I think it's a mix of wishful thinking and self-deception. Novak, who has proven himself to be little more than a puppet (You want me to help you expose a CIA agent? Okay!), probably wants to reassure himself that he did nothing wrong. As for the others? Man, I don't know.
By denying that Plame was covert, they don't have to embrace the nasty idea that the politically motivated exposure of undercover intelligence agents is good and right. They can defend it as a valid response to critics. "See? She wasn't covert, so we're not giving away any secrets here."
There is one slight problem with that concept. The CIA considered Plame to be covert and they tooks steps to make sure her status was classified. Now whether you think that her CIA job shouldn't have been considered covert, or that the details about her desk job at Langley should have never been classified, doesn't really matter. I don't think the Star Wars prequels should have been made, but that decision was up to George Lucas. The decision on Plame was made by the CIA and no amount of parsing by the Bush apologists in the media can change that.
So you'll have to forgive me if I ignore the amateur analysis from the Kondrackes and Hannitys and stick with the professionals.
I also happen to agree with Plame's testimony from yesterday when she said:
"They all knew that I worked with the CIA," Plame said. "They might not have known what my status was but that alone - the fact that I worked for the CIA - should have put up a red flag."Indeed! One must think twice about exposing a CIA employee as part of a political maneuver, and one would hope the idea would lose some appeal the second time around.
But then again, look at the jokers we're talking about. To these guys, second thoughts are something other people have.
Remember, when you work for George Bush or Dick Cheney, the ends justify the means.