Notes on the Atrocities
Like a 100-watt radio station, broadcasting to the dozens...

Monday, March 22, 2004  

I tuned in to the Limbaugh show this morning to get a sense about how White House apologists would respond to Clarke's statements. It wasn't a pretty sight. His take: it's an attack from the Clinton administration. Roughly: "The Clinton administration and officials, with help from their friends in the media, are desperate to rewrite history to save Clinton's legacy." Ignoring the fact that Clarke was a Reagan appointee who spent 14 of 22 years in GOP administrations, Rush is hoping to convince the dittoheads he's actually a Clintonite. (It'll probably work, but who cares--the dittoheads weren't wavering toward Kerry, anyway.) From there, he minimized Clarke's influence and has tagged him a man spurned by the Bushies bent on revenge.

Cheney spent two segments on the show, but spoke only a fraction of the time. It was a staged PR event in which Rush was allowed to assert a number of false facts while Cheney mildly backed up the President. The most salient thing he said was this (again, roughly, from memory):

"He was the head of terrorism there [the Clinton administration] for several years, and I didn't notice they had a particularly strong effect on terrorism."

So that's what they're saying on the fringe: Clarke's a spurned Clintonite who's lashing out because he got demoted by Bush.

(No one, so far, seems to be rebutting Clarke's sharpest accusation: that there was no intel linking al Qaida and Iraq, and that the White House knew this, but decided to invade anyway. I wonder why?)

[Update: Josh points us to the Limbaugh/Cheney transcript. The quote I paraphrased actually read like this: "As I say, he was head of counterterrorism for several years there in the nineties, and I didn't notice that they had any great success dealing with the terrorist threat."

And since we have the transcript, here's Rush's feeble attempt to cast this as Clinton's fault: "[Y]ou have the Clinton administration, if they defended the country as eagerly and with as much fervor as they are attempting to defend themselves in all this, we might have -- I don't expect you to comment -- we might have escaped some of the attacks that we've had."]

posted by Jeff | 10:59 AM |
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