Saturday, July 2, 2005

So What's the Story on Bob Novak?

If I were the Special Counsel in the Plame deal, Bob "Douchebag for Liberty" Novak would be standing at rigid attention in front of me and singing like a little canary under threat of incarceration under the hoosegow. He'd have a lot more new body parts than a hip when I got done with him. Anyway, why isn't he facing jail time? This commentary in the LATimes asks the same question.
It was classic Novak: a hatchet job directed not at Plame, but at her husband, former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV. The firestorm that erupted has consumed millions of dollars in investigation and litigation costs and has wreaked havoc with the career not just of Plame (who had to leave the CIA) but of two reporters who were hauled into court and threatened with prison.

Novak's original intention, it seems, was to publicly damage Wilson, who had embarrassed President Bush by showing that he relied on false information to justify the Iraq war. Although Novak admits that he was asked not to publish Plame's name by a CIA official, he insists that he did not realize that he might be putting her in danger. Nevertheless, he showed little concern for safety or propriety until after the controversy erupted.
The disclosure of the name - in addition to violating the law against revealing the names of covert personnel - served no apparent purpose beyond that of retaliation.
Over the course of the investigation into the matter, special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has gone after journalists such as Miller with a fury - winning findings of contempt against them for refusing to give up their sources.

Yet, there has been a conspicuous absence of any similar effort against Novak. This has led to speculation that either Novak has been given special treatment by a Republican prosecutor, or he has revealed his sources, or his sources have revealed themselves to the prosecutors.
In the interview, Novak refused to answer even the most basic question, such as whether "in general … you cooperated with investigators in the case." Novak insisted his lawyer had told him not to answer "until this case is finished." His reliance on his lawyer's advice is a rather feeble and perplexing defense.
I think I would gently remind the douchebag that his lawyer wasn't going to be the one doing the time.

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