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Ear to the Ground

‘Scooter’ Libby Found Guilty

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Posted on Mar 6, 2007
Scooter Libby
beachblogger.net

I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby was found guilty on four of the five counts of perjury and obstruction for which he was standing trial. Media Matters anticipates the misinformation talking points likely to circulate in the mainstream media.

Washington Post:


WASHINGTON—Former White House aide I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby was convicted Tuesday of obstruction, perjury and lying to the FBI in an investigation into the leak of a CIA operative’s identity.

Libby, the former chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, was accused of lying and obstructing the investigation into the 2003 leak of CIA operative Valerie Plame’s identity to reporters.

He was acquitted of one count of lying to the FBI.

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Media Matters:

On March 6, a federal jury found former vice presidential chief of staff I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby guilty on charges of perjury, obstruction of justice, and lying to federal investigators. In the wake of this decision, conservatives and other media figures can be expected to revive and advance numerous myths and falsehoods regarding the CIA leak case that have circulated throughout the media since Libby’s indictment in October 2005.

In anticipation of this misinformation, Media Matters for America has listed those baseless and false claims likely to surface in the coming days and weeks:

* No underlying crime was committed. Since a federal grand jury indicted Libby in October 2005, numerous media figures have stated that the nature of the charges against him prove that special counsel Patrick J. Fitzgerald’s investigation of the CIA leak case found that no underlying crime had been committed. But this assertion ignores Fitzgerald’s explanation that Libby’s obstructions prevented him—and the grand jury—from determining whether the alleged leak violated federal law.
 
* There was no concerted White House effort to smear Wilson. In his October 2005 press conference announcing Libby’s indictment, Fitzgerald alleged that, in 2003, “multiple people in the White House” engaged in a “concerted action” to “discredit, punish, or seek revenge against” former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV. In August 2006, it came to light that then-deputy secretary of State Richard Armitage was the original source for syndicated columnist Robert D. Novak’s July 14, 2003, column exposing CIA operative Valerie Plame’s identity. Numerous conservative media figures subsequently claimed that this revelation disproved the notion of a “concerted” White House effort to smear Wilson. But to the contrary, David Corn—Washington editor of The Nation and co-author of Hubris (Crown, 2006) the book that revealed Armitage’s role in the leak—noted on his Nation weblog that Armitage “abetted a White House campaign under way to undermine Wilson” and that whether he deliberately leaked Plame’s identity, “the public role is without question: senior White House aides wanted to use Valerie Wilson’s CIA employment against her husband.”

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By Dinah Thompson, July 2, 2007 at 9:32 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If the House and the Senate doesn,t try to impeach Bush now may God have mercy on America. Update on laws Bush didn,t get the power of the Line-Item-Veto, but he used a law called Signing Statements in which he changed 505 things in the constitution and 810 things in federal laws.Some things he re-wrote and some he changed, some he has just plain ignored.I don,t thing America can survive for another year and a half. A concerned Citizen

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By Joe, March 7, 2007 at 4:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Libby - guilty! Also guilty - Bush, Cheney, Rove and other assorted White House liars. The new name for the WH is surely the “House of Shame” since it seceded from the union.

Looking forward to the WH spin on this one, the sounds of the shredders devouring reports and and WMDs, and the movers hauling out the computers, the token firings, and the president and vice president traveling out of the country to “important” but meaningless meetings for the next couple of years - unless the wheels of impeachment get rolling by next spring.

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By Tobiaz, March 6, 2007 at 11:22 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“This could be the beginning of a successful pattern” dawnfeather, but sadly it will only be the beginning of the end.
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17485067/

Appeals, followed by absolutely no intention whatsoever of any more charges being brought in this case. So, what happened to finding out who actually compromised a CIA agent, her cover, her associates and possibly caused their career or life to end? Of course we will never know will we. Because in the final analysis it is much more important to protect the CIA and the FBI than it is to protect Rove and Cheney.

BBC reported tonight this isn’t as bad as Watergate, but ...

Connections. Where were Cheney and Rumsfeld about the time Watergate happened? And what exactly were Nixon’s people trying to steal? And what’s that got to do with anything?

Everything.

Interesting connection. No, much worse. Because if someone would pay attention. Follow the bouncing ball as it were they would discover it’s all connected. What was Bush One doing during Watergate? Before Watergate, and why does that matter? What has the CIA got to gain from keeping this case from expanding? Is this really about just protecting Rove and Cheney? It has virtually nothing to do with protecting Rove and Cheney.

Have you noticed how little attention has been focused on Rove lately? But virtually no effort made to shield Cheney. Strange? No, predictable.

Cheney screwed up when he opened this can of worms and he knows it.  He needed a fall guy. Why was Libby willing to play that role? Which Bush did Cheney scratch off that note? We are all looking at the wrong crime.

Figure it out.

“This is the first leak in the Bush dike.  Let the all the holes leak and flow.”  I wish that were true JUSTALK . But the dike has been sending out jets close to flooding for many, many years and things only get worse. The thorns and knots holding together this rambling trunk have been firmly in control for generations! We know their names!

Wrong charge, wrong questions, wrong answers, great diversion. That is the republican way.

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By Cazador, March 6, 2007 at 7:19 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Novak disclosed. Just how does he squirm out of this? By the happenstance that no one was charged with the disclosure crime? Is he immune via the 4th Amendment as a man of the press?  Does the law apply only to administration officials?

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By jeffrey, March 6, 2007 at 6:39 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I suppose we now know the reciepiant of the next Medal of Freedom,,,,Thank you GW

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By jeffrey, March 6, 2007 at 6:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

pardon??????????

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By dawnfeather, March 6, 2007 at 6:20 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This is a good start, but it could turn quickly into a massive scapegoating effort. Everyone in that administration should get their turn under a judicial microscope. This could be the beginning of a successful pattern.

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By Christopher Robin, March 6, 2007 at 4:23 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Isn’t it interesting that he faces 30 years for these charges, but due to “federal guidelines” he may possibly face a year?

Yet when John Q Public is sentenced, and federal “guidelines” are brought into play. Generally it means lock’em up and throw away the key? Yet in this case it means a lighter sentence? or has the CNN misreported this?

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By August West, March 6, 2007 at 4:11 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If I were handicapping the likelihood of Libby doing any jail time I’d set the odds at 2/5 that he does no time.  The appeal will go to the Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit, which has proven quite friendly to the Bush Administration (and recently ruled that prisoners at Gitmo have no right to bring a habeas corpus petition under the Military Commissions Act).  That process will take more than a year from the date a notice of appeal is filed.  Even with a friendly court, I give him less than a 25 percent chance of reversal.  However, I give him a 90 percent chance of being granted bail on appeal.
If the appellate court upholds the conviction, a petition for rehearing or appeal to the Supreme Court would definitely put off Libby’s sentence until after the November 2008 elections.  At that point a pardon from the Decider would be inevitable.

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By Steve Hammons, March 6, 2007 at 4:03 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Libby obviously seems to be part of a much larger conspiracy involving many individuals within the Bush administration and outside of it.

Neocons, foreign government lobby groups, war profiteers and members of the press associated with them worked hand-in-hand to apparently falsify intelligence and manipulate the American people and Congress.

One of these members of the press was Judith Miller. The administration via Libby leaked senstive information to her and she produced articles for the New York Times spreading this pro-war propaganda.

Hopefully, investigations into this matter will continue and expand. For more on this, see:

“Society of Professional Journalists’ Award to Judith Miller Helps Cover-Up?”

Steve Hammons
American Chronicle
October 27, 2005

http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/viewArticle.asp?articleID=3287

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By Druthers, March 6, 2007 at 3:47 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The jury rendered a verdict.  Justice has yet to be administred to Libby for the crime for which he is convicted.
If no justice is administred, if Bush dares to pardons him and there is no reason to think he would not dare, the administration has too much to lose, is there a crime and what becomes of it?
Was it for this that Paul Revere made his midnight ride?

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By dick, March 6, 2007 at 3:42 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Another neocon exposed, but not to worry. He may even get a medal, as well as a pardon, from Bush. The latest BBC poll shows Israel with the most negative influence in the world, even worse than Iran!

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By JUSTALK, March 6, 2007 at 3:24 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This is the first leak in the Bush dike.  Let the all the holes leak and flow.

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By Mark Dolce, March 6, 2007 at 3:06 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I always felt that Libby was guilty. But by virtue of the system I knew he would be have to be convicted by due process of the law because he, as all of us, are innocent until proven guilty. And now, that has come to pass. But, in addition, my gut has always told me he would be pardoned if found guilty. This is yet to be seen but it is a gut feeling becasue we know - collectively and consciously - and I know instinctively - the ones behind this affair are not the ones who went to trial. So, let’s go after Rove, Cheney, Bush, Rumsfeld, Ashcroft. etc. and make this the turn around our country needs to get back to what it can and should be; a functional, working democracy NOT BENT on capitalism because capitalism, in the wrong hands, turns to GREED . It doesn’t have to be like that but it is - unfortunately our government is living proof - over and over! We need a social democracy; of the people, by the people and for the people. Just because Libby was convicted it does not mean he will not be pardoned. And “if” we go after the others behind him, it would not mean they would not go free as well. Or at worst be sent to Club Fed. What’s the point of these “affairs” being made public, finding the investigators to go ater them, finding the prosecutor to prosecute, convicting them only to be pardoned or not? And then have the same “affair” come back 10, 20, 30 years later with different names and different faces (Nixon to GW Bush) because all they want is power, money and possessions? Truth Dig can dig all they want but it is us, the United States citizens,  who have to dig deeper into ourselves and souls to maintain the integrity of this country - as people, as individulas and as voters in the democratic process. Capitalism does not have to equal greed.

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By Quy Tran, March 6, 2007 at 2:56 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Hey, Scooter don’t worry ! You will be pardoned !That means one “son of the bitch” pardons the other “son of the bitch”. It’s political play in Washington D.C. !

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By Marshall, March 6, 2007 at 2:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

To Lamonte:

“Didn’t Cheney and Rove use Libby to expose one of our agents and, in turn, compromise some double agents who wroked for our side by giving up Valerie Plames identity?  Please tell me how their crime is different than Hansen’s.”

Ummmm… no.  The conviction had nothing to do with leaking the agent’s name, for which no one has been indicted.  The misinformation that we’ll be seeing from the press over the next days and weeks will be the implication that Libby had something to do with the leak when, in fact, there’s no evidence of such.

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By DSmith, March 6, 2007 at 2:00 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

He’ll have many hours to write love letters to that lying skank Judith Miller. They can discuss how the Aspens all change colors because their roots are connected.

Of course, both just happen to be Likud party zionist crazies who, if not fired and found guilty, would be right now fabricating evidence for a war with Iran. All the while, the warmonger’s sons and daughters live the good life at Harvard.

Good enough for the warmongering bastard.

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By Vman, March 6, 2007 at 1:41 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It is now clear that the Bush Administration committed treason with Scooters conviction. With RICO the man at the top is responsible.

It is also coming out that plans to destroy Plame’s covert CIA operation Brewster -Jennings was the real target and decided upon before Joe Wilson even wrote his article. The Joe Wilson smear spin is just that, spin that the MSM has swallowed hook line a sinker.

Brewster-Jennings was our Nation’s most important intelligence operation tracking Nuclear and WMD acquisition and development in the Middle East. Cheney and Bush wanted tnis destroyed so there would be no ‘pissant’ cia trying to meddle in their Iran and Iraq war plans.

It is also rumored that Plame’s Brewster-Jennings just prior to Plames exposure had been instrumental in stopping a load of WMD headed for Iraq through Turkey, and it has been conjectured that this was the shipment and Bush operation to plant the WMD’s in Iraq.

When Brewster-Jennings was destroyed, people were killed as a result and a multi-year and multi-million dollar covert front company was destroyed. Covert front companies are the most complicated covert operations to create, and maintain, and they historically provide the best intelligence.

Bush and Cheney destroyed our nation’s most important and primary WMD/Nuclear proliferation intelligence efforts in the Middle East. And for this they should be tried, impeached and perhaps put to death for treason.

This is the most disgusting and reprehensible thing that has ever been done to our country. Sy Hersh published some whiffs on this awhile back but was ignored.

Plame’s outing was a heinous and treasoness conspiracy with no equal. The Joe Wilson smear angle was BS from the start and is pure Rovian mis-direction. It may even be the case that Cheney’s office sent Wilson to Niger to get the conspiracy and mis-direction rolling.

Think about it, and try to stop yourself from throwing up or running for the pitchfork.

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By richard, March 6, 2007 at 1:15 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Years of lies and it took how fricken long? Stop funding the continuing planned bloodshed…..

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By Dan, March 6, 2007 at 12:55 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Now let’s impeach and convict the rest of the lying leaders of America who put their politics above the liberty of a free country.

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By David, March 6, 2007 at 12:15 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I don’t care what happens to Libby just so long as he suffers.  He deserves any bad that comes to him for his complicity in depriving hundreds of thousands of people of their lives and countless others of their loved ones.  His part was undoubtably far-less significant than was Cheney’s, Bush’s, Rumsfeld’s, Wolfowitz’s, Rice’s, etc, but he deserves to be punished nonetheless - oh yea, and also for the crime that is so rutine in this White House - lying to the public as naturally as breathing. I doubt he will actually suffer at all though.

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By Paul Magill (Smith), March 6, 2007 at 12:11 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Libby convicted—-Yeah! Ye-haw! Ya-hoo! One step closer to putting that lying pile of smelly dung (Thanks ‘Trigger finger’ for the mental image of your good neighbor’s appropriate artwork) VP in the adjoining cell.

Shouldn’t get too happy-footed though, because we all know that even if you cut the head off a snake it still has poisonous movement. You can surely believe this administration will do ANYTHING to try to squirm out of this one. ‘W’ will probably come up with a pardon to keep any more info about criminal activities of this administration from coming out. That’s all right, though, because it’s similar to Nixon firing the special prosecuter for Watergate, something that so incensed the public it lead to his impeachment/resignation.

Improbable as it seems I believe this White House is even more devious, so I imagine attempts at bribery, assasinations, mysterious deaths attributed to suicide, etc, will be the order of the day. This administration, like the mob it is, has a lot of secret ‘black’ operations going on, and will go to any extremes to retain hold on their power. They have shown their under-handed methods too many times to have me believe they will go quietly into the night.

They are on the run now so let’s keep their feet to the fire with numerous investigations and further indictments all the way up the chain of command.

It is our duty and must not be neglected.

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By Bert, March 6, 2007 at 12:09 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Off to the Big House! And, now for the rest of em

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By hadeuff, March 6, 2007 at 12:01 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

will the fall guy spill the beans? if not, it’s because he awaits his prezpardon… will dicky have w eliminated before the last day so he can rewrite history? will they make us another 911 to distract our attention? will they bomb iran to distract us?

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By John Weinell, March 6, 2007 at 11:49 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It is satisfying that justice was rendered in Mr. Libby’s jury trial. Unfortunately, this verdict does not address the more serious crimes committed by the Bush administration. No one was prosecuted for revealing Valerie Plame’s cover as a CIA operative. More importantly, no one has been held responsible for starting an unnecessary war based on calculated lies. The importance of this trial was the light it shed on the tactics President Bush used to manipulate Americans into believing that Saddam Hussein was an imminent threat to the United States. Bush, Rice, Cheney and Powell continuously and falsely claimed that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and was involved in the tragedy of 9/11. When Ambassador Wilson wrote his opinion piece in the Washington Post exposing Bush’s lie in his State of the Union address regarding alleged efforts by Iraq to obtain uranium from Niger (which had previously been removed from a Bush speech by the CIA), the administration, with Cheney as point man, began a smear campaign to punish, intimidate and discredit Joe Wilson.
The practical effect of the trial will be an eventual Presidential pardon of Mr. Libby. The task of his defense team will be to delay sentencing or execution of sentence until January 2009.
It is my hope that the trial and verdict might embolden Congress to begin serious investigation into the circumstances leading to the Iraq war. Thousands of brave young American soldiers and tens of thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians have been killed and maimed in this senseless conflict. We must honor the fallen by punishing those responsible and we must be vigilant to never be deceived into war again.

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By Christopher Robin, March 6, 2007 at 11:39 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Scooter, don’t accept any invitations by the vice president to go duck hunting ....

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By phydeauxspeaks, March 6, 2007 at 11:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Oh, bloody hell!  My first post at Truthdig and I typo!  I hate it when that happens….  should have been “coMe-uppances”.

I like L.G.‘s extraordinary rendition idea!

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By matias, March 6, 2007 at 11:09 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Ok…let’s see how long now till Bush issues his pardon. Once that’s done, Libby can return to his old job as Cheney’s chief of staff. Waddacountry!

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By Christopher Robin, March 6, 2007 at 11:06 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Of course Bush will pardon him. But if he appeals he’ll bear the costs ....and the next out come might be the same? Unless Bush replaces this Judge too??

This pardon nonsense is something else that needs reform, for example you shouldn’t be able to pardon anyone that was a part of your own administration for things done while performing in office. Otherwise, why would they feel any need to follow the law? They can just pardon themselves later? Seems to be a annual way of doing business for the Republican White House administrations. No honor lost on them.

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By Lamonte, March 6, 2007 at 11:01 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This past weekend I saw the movie “Breach” telling the story of Robert Hansen, the FBI agent who is now sentenced to life in prison.  He spends 23 of 24 hours a day in solitary confinement for his crimes, which were essentially, among other things, exposing many double agents who were giving us information about the Soviet Union and then, after the fall of the Soviet Empite, the Russians.  Didn’t Cheney and Rove use Libby to expose one of our agents and, in turn, compromise some double agents who wroked for our side by giving up Valerie Plames identity?  Please tell me how their crime is different than Hansen’s.

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By C Quil, March 6, 2007 at 10:35 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

And he’ll appeal. How long will that take?

Then Bush will pardon him on his way out the White House door.

I’d be surprised if Libby even sees a day inside the slammer.

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By L.G., March 6, 2007 at 10:21 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Let’s outsource his imprisionment to Syria or Egypt. Maybe, only if Christmas were near, could one hope for Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Pearl, et al to follow.

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By phydeauxspeaks, March 6, 2007 at 10:17 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Let’s hope this is the first of many cone-uppances!

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