Monday, January 23, 2006



You know how I sometimes like to back away from the mundane on the Lord's day of rest and write about culture and stuff. Well... I don't think "When George Met Jack" has been made into a movie yet-- just a TIME Magazine story, but... well, what a movie it will be! Have you been following the lively series on THINK PROGRESS, an awesome blog on which they follow minutely Scotty McClellan's day by day stonewalling of the White House press corp-- minus his lover, Gannon/Guckert who may have left both his former occupations-- Bush Regime whore and on-line water sports prostitute-- for a career in literature (and blogging). Apparently Scotty trolled around DC and found some other wing-nut shill, someone named "Les", to lob softballs to him at press briefings.

But nothing is helping him keep the hounds at bay when it comes to the relationship between Bush and Abramoff. Conventional wisdom: Bush and Abramoff swam in the same cesspool...often... and together. White House spin: "Abraham who? Never met the gentleman. Isn't he a friend of some Texas congressman?" Of course that is exactly what Montana's crooked senator, Conrad Burns, was saying before someone spread around all the photos of Abramoff shoving $100 bills up the senatorial posterior causing Connie to admit that he and Abramoff had flown on a corporate jet together to Amsterdam where they were married. And anyway, you probably remember Bush not being able to remember the name of his biggest career-long campaign briber contributor, a "Kenny-boy" something or other.

So here's the White House frantically searching for all the hundreds and hundreds of photos that have been taken over the years of Bush and Abramoff and of Abramoff and Bush family members interacting, while the supermarket checkout counter tabloids are offering even more money for the same snaps than the Secret Service is and all the while Scotty is saying, "Abraham who?" and maybe he was at the Hannukah Party at the White House for every single Republican Jew and Bush was in church while that was going on and never met him. But wouldn't you know it; those Commies at TIME now say they've seen 5 compromising pictures! TIME writes snarkily: "TIME has seen five photographs of Abramoff and the President that suggest a level of contact between them that Bush's aides have downplayed... And that has been a fear of the Bush team's for the past several months: that a picture of the President with the admitted felon could become the iconic image of direct presidential involvement in a burgeoning corruption scandal..."

We hear there are even some racy ones with Bush and a criminal Kickapoo client of Abramoff's, all 3 of them doing something weird with a bolo. And supposedly there's one of Abramoff's 3 young sons being impositioned by the grotesquely fat, former high school wresting coach Denny Hastert while Bush looks on in mock horror. TIME goes on to report that Abramoff's partner, Michael Scanlon (who pleaded guilty to bribing Bob Ney), has accused Bush of having "a relationship" with Abramoff, which has flustered and upset poor Scotty McClellan who stamped his feet and said "People are insinuating things based on no evidence whatsoever." So there!


A Mr. Makateonenodua, a crooked Indian "chief" from the Texas Kickapoos who was pal-ing around with Abramoff, Grover Norquist and Bush, and who Bush affectionately called "Jefe," is under federal indictment for allegedly embezzling more than $300,000 from his tribe.


The alternative headline was "If you lay down with Dogs... Does George W. Bush have a bad case of fleas?" THINK PROGRESS has the scoop confirming what many people were thinking is the source of the photos TIME Magazine saw of Bush with admitted felon Abramoff: Abramoff. Last night on MSNBC, Michael Isikoff of NEWSWEEK reported that it was Abramoff who has been floating the photos of himself and members of his family (as well as with "Jefe" Makateonenodua, Abramoff's embezzler pal) with George "Abraham Who?" Bush.

"As a general rule, if you’re the president … you don’t like pictures out there of you with convicted felons. It sounds like … there’s at least one picture of him with at least one convicted felon and another indicted, so it’s probably not a picture the White House is eager to have out there. The other interesting aspect of this is, while the White House hasn’t put these out, Jack Abramoff has clearly shown them to people. I don’t know anything about TIME sources, but I do know that he showed them to WASHINGTONIAN magazine, which suggests he may be playing a little bit of a game here. He has, of course, pled guilty already to the Justice Department. But it does raise a question in my mind at least as to whether Abramoff is maybe sort of sending some sort of signal out here: 'Hey, I’ve got this stuff.' Maybe he wants something from somebody at the White House, or he wants someone at the White House not to do something, and just sort of subtly playing with people here."

And... well, we do know Michael Abramoff is a bit of a player-- and a dirty one at that. Which brings us back to the alternative title. Of course, if Bush does have a bad case of the fleas, it won't be too much longer before Tom DeLay takes up his old career as an exterminator again, unless, of course, he spends the rest of his natural life in prison.


At 3:08 PM, Blogger KenInNY said...

Rachel Maddow was talking interestingly this morning about why the White House is so terrified about pix of him and Fedora Jack. In our culture it's impossible to reckon how many words a picture is worth, because words ain't worth nuttin', unless they're being (ab)used for Rovelike propaganda purposes.

As she pointed out, the horrors of Abu Ghraib had been documented in minute detail IN WORDS but attracted no attention--until the fateful pictures started showing up, and then the shit hit the fan.


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