The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Friday, April 06, 2007

The flip side of the US Attorney scandal

It was as painful as always to watch the neo-fascists bend over backwards to claim that the purge of US Attorneys was a manufactured scandal, nothing to see here, please move on... But the lame cries of "politicizing justice" are a perfect example (about the 83rd, in fact) of the maxim "If Republicans accuse you of it, they're doing it themselves." As the lying to Congress, Fifth Amendment pleas, and incriminating documents have demonstrated.

But it isn't just about firing attorneys who didn't do the White House's dirty work-- it's once again about rewarding loyal incompetents with important positions they're too inept to handle.

Example 1 : Last year, Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle (D), seeking a second term, was considered relatively vulnerable by the Republican establishment. The GOP had successfully recruited then-Rep. Mark Green (R-Wis.) to be their gubernatorial candidate, they cleared the field so he could get the nomination, fundraising was brisk, and some early polling showed Green within striking distance.Right around the time that Green officially became the GOP nominee in Wisconsin, U.S. Attorney Steven Biskupic brought charges against a top official in Doyle’s administration, accusing the state purchasing supervisor of corruption. Were the charges politically motivated? It’s hard to say for sure, but consider how quickly a federal appeals court dismissed the charges yesterday.

Example 2: Four top staffers to Rachel Paulose, the U.S. attorney in Minnesota, have voluntarily demoted themselves in protest of Paulose’s “highly dictatorial style” of managing. Paulose has also “earned a reputation for quoting Bible verses and dressing down underlings.”

According to news reports, the staffers’ dramatic moves were “intended to send a message to Washington — that 33-year-old Paulose is in over her head.” The Bush administration tried to prevent the resignations by sending a “top justice official to Minneapolis Thursday to mediate the situation. The mediation failed.” . . .

Paulose had been in her position for a year as an interim U.S. attorney before she was sworn-in officially last month. She created controversy when her lavish swearing-in ceremony included a professional photographer, a color guard, and a choir.

That level of hubris is positively Ashcroftian. She's a loyal Bushie, all right.