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Saturday, December 03, 2005

Product Image Disaster

No, not the Jaguar, although you think Ford might be a bit concerned.

In a new WaPo article, the Rovians further engage in what Pachacutec so aptly describes as the octopus ink strategy: swim fast and try to cloud the waters:
Now, Rove is relying on that casual exchange [between Vivica Novak and Robert Luskin] as part of a broad effort to convince a prosecutor he did not lie about his role in the CIA leak case, the sources said.
V. Novak is now providing the backbone of Rover's defense. Nice.
According to a source familiar with Novak's conversation with Luskin, the two were having a casual conversation over drinks sometime in early 2004 when Luskin insisted that his client, Rove, faced no danger in the leak investigation. Novak, described as fishing for information or trying to test Luskin's statement, begged to differ. She said she had heard at the magazine that Rove had been a key source for Cooper on information he published about Plame.
What, no cocktail weenies?
One person familiar with the case said the Novak-Luskin conversation is not what prompted Rove to change his testimony in the case. In fact, this person said, Novak told Luskin about the Rove-Cooper connection before Rove's first appearance before the grand jury in February 2004.
Well that's certainly a new spin. I guess the story has changed now that the earlier saga was greeted by such thundering rounds of derisive laughter. Someone should tell Mr. Fitzgerald that the conversation took place in or before February. He had requested her testimony for any conversation with Luskin after May 2004. Oddly, this is never addressed. A small quibble I guess in an article otherwise stunning for its unquestioning stenographic excellence.
Shortly before his client's second appearance before the grand jury in October, Luskin personally conducted a review of thousands of e-mails Rove had sent during the crucial weeks in 2003, including those from accounts reserved for personal and political correspondence, a source familiar with the situation said.

Amid the e-mails, Luskin found one sent from Rove to Stephen J. Hadley, then deputy national security adviser, in which Rove mentioned his conversation with Cooper. The e-mail was written from Rove's government account, which investigators searched early in the inquiry. It is unclear why the e-mail was not discovered at that time.
What happened to the "bad search parameters?" I thought it was the computer's fault?
"There's no way that Viveca Novak knowingly, wittingly gave up a confidential source to Robert Luskin," [Time's managing editor Jim] Kelly said.
Did he slip her a couple of roofies? I'm not getting that one.
A source familiar with the exchange said the fact that Rove was Cooper's source was known by only a few at the magazine, including Cooper, his Washington bureau editor and Kelly, but it was not as closely guarded a secret as Time editors now believe it should have been.
I guess not.
Kelly declined to comment on when Novak notified the magazine that Luskin planned to seek her testimony before Fitzgerald.
Matt Cooper quite nearly went to jail. Karl Rove never intended to give him any kind of waiver, it happened by pure fucking big-mouth Luskin accident. Do you think Karl Rove lost one minute of sleep thinking he was provoking a constitutional crisis? And can you imagine? Going to jail to protect Karl Rove? Think about that. You think V. Novak might have wandered into her editors at some point over the past year and a half and said "you know, I don't know how this might fit into anything, but before they send Matt to Romania for waterboarding maybe I should mention..."

Karl Rove would be quite happily driving around in his Jaguar scarfing White Castles with no remorse whatsoever for all of this. Even if you accept that stuff like this travels around newsrooms with more freedom than it should -- and it does -- once the stakes become clear you have to decide what team you're on. And it is not entirely apparent at the moment to what team Ms. Luskin Novak thinks she owes her allegiance.