"The resistance of many pundits to the notion that we just need to get the fuck out is due in part to their belief that We Must Be Able To Do Something. Things are fucked, and someone needs to fix the poblem. It's understandable that people gaze at a disaster, especially one of our own making, and imagine that there's something we can do to somehow make things better, but that doesn't mean that we can. More than that, our presence is a not insignificant part of the problem even if our absence won't cause the pony to appear.
We didn't have the ability to unshit the bed two years ago, and we don't have it now. More than that, this basic belief is part of what caused otherwise sensible people think we could fix things in Iraq in early '03.
"But just as important as the new details are the way Comey's testimony changes the scope of this investigation. By describing an event that clearly implicated the White House--and George Bush specifically--in flouting the law, Comey undercut Gonzales' effectiveness as a firewall. For four months, Gonzales has remained in office because he prevented Congress from investigating the White House. But Comey's testimony gave Congress all it needed to justify much more intrusive investigations of the White House.
Those of us paying attention have known Gonzales was a creepy sycophant since before he joined the Administration (though Republican Senators were still able to deny that). But the nature of the charges against Gonzales--and Bush--have changed.
* emptywheel argues that the NSA domestic wiretapping began after 911.
"It's a hard thing to do --- whistleblowers are often somewhat eccentric, because you have to be the kind of unusual person who is willing to go against the prevailing wisdom and throw yourself in front of extremely powerful institutions and people who are deeply threatened by what you have to say. I get why so few people ever do it.
"Today Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and Franks exalt the initial Afghan operation as an unqualified success ("remarkable," in fact, Rummy boasts). But Osama bin Laden is on the loose again because they allowed him to escape from Tora Bora, and then blew him off apparently for good to start a wag-the-dog war in Iraq that's back-firing, big-time. It's that simple.
If bin Laden directs another attack on America from his new redoubt inside Pakistan, the flawed Afghan operation will go down – alongside the non-sequitur war in Iraq – as the worst chain of military blunders in U.S. history."