It seems that Karl Rove has spent more time in front of the Grand Jury than Ronald McDonald has at the Golden Arches. It looks more and more likely that he may be the big fish in the CIA leak case and the prosecution is carefully taking its time to reel him in.
If Rove goes down, this could be terrible news for Bush, whose poll numbers are approaching that of Tanya Harding or Saddam Hussen in a Kurdish neighborhood. A scandal of this magnitude in the midst of a Bush freefall could drag his poll numbers into the mid-20's and tar Republicans in the mid-term elections. This is a huge story to watch.
Ah, yes, when all else fails there is the “that would have been stupid defense”. It appears that Karl Rove has chosen this to be a piece of his final efforts to avoid indictment. I’ve always found the very notion of this defense flawed. The premise of the defense is that smart people wouldn’t do stupid things or make decisions that could rationally be expected to lead to negative consequences. In Rove’s case, as I understand the issue, the argument is being used to explain an oversight to reveal all the details of his conversation with Matt Cooper (specifically the part about Valerie Plame)…in essence he simply forgot that portion of the conversation but to lie would have been stupid…and Rove knows people don’t think he is stupid.
The unspoken assertion by those who use this defense (Tom DeLay comes to mind) is that they may use their intelligence to walk right up to the line, but they are also smart enough to never cross that line…basically they know the rules so well they can navigate them like a skilled tightrope walker. On the surface it sounds reasonable and plausible.
Unfortunately, history often seems to contradict this defense and the premise upon which it is founded. That’s not to say these individuals are stupid…they are actually quite bright. However, what people may miss is an understanding that whatever these people possess in terms of smarts sometimes pales in comparison to the zeal with which they seek wealth, prestige, or power. In essence, smart people, not unlike others who lie and manipulate, are not above self-deceit in order to augment lofty goals, obtuse egos, and an unbridled hunger for power.
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