Sunday, October 30, 2005

Scooter, Clinton Comparisons: Apples And Oranges

Anyone else getting tired of the comparisons of Clinton and Libby? Any such comparison is apples and oranges in my opinion.

At the heart of most comparisons by those who would defend this administration and Libby, you will find the 'perjury' charge. "Clinton lied, Scooter lied... therefore they are equal on that charge." From a legal and technical perspective, they are correct. However, one would also be correct in saying that a tent and a brick house are both shelters from a storm. It is necessary to look past the perjury charge and look at what they were/are lying (in Libby's case, alledgedly lying) to protect.

One must look at the size of the shadow that each perjury charge casts.

Clinton tried to wriggle past the definition given of 'sexual encounter' in an effort to avoid public embarassment for himself and his family. That was literally the extent of the reason for Clinton lying to the Grand Jury.

Libby has four charges of lying leveled against him, two false statments on separate occasions to FBI agents and two perjury charges for lying on two separate occasions to a grand jury. You must ask yourself this: What was Libby's motivation for alledgedly lying? It is apparent to most cogent folk that Libby was lying to protect Cheney and the administration from Fitzgerald discovering that the administration was sniping it's critics in the run up to the invasion of Iraq. This is a much larger and far reaching shadow than Clintons'. Libby's shadow has many tenticles that potentially branch off into invading other countries on trumped up evidence. It also branches off into the fact that 2000 of our soldiers have died and so have tens of thousands of deaths Iraqi citzens.

Another major difference is that there was no underlying crime behind Clinton's perjury. If he had admitted that there were instances of sexual encounters, there would be no repercussions other than Hilary possibly filing for divorce. However, if Libby had told the truth that he did give Valerie Wilson's name and position to Miller et al; then he still has legal issues facing him in the form of outing an undercover operative at the CIA.

There are many other differences here that I will try to outline later. Alas, my daughter and I are going out to carve some pumpkins. She will play the part of Ken Starr and carve a small pumpkin with a dull butterknife. I will be playing the part of Fitz and carving a giant pumpkin with skill and multiple sharp instruments.

Update :: Oct 30, 2005 : 3:41 pm : ThinkingWoman over at Democratic Underground succinctly quipped:
"The reason I'm not tired of the comparisons is because it gives me the chance to explain exactly how they compare and how they contrast, all at the expense of the yahoo who brought it up. I love pointing out that if lying under oath about sex was bad, that lying under oath about compromising national security is worse...treason in fact."
There you go, now this argument can cut both ways if you encounter a Libby = Clinton type.