Thursday, July 22, 2004

Here We Go Again

This perceptive and perhaps prescient post by Dave Johnson at the american street: "Berger - Missing the Point!" is worth keeping in mind. It's not the act that has everyone in an uproar, it's the nefarious motivations that everyone can ascribe to it. All one talking head needs to ask another talking head is, "What could he have been thinking?" or "What possible reason could he have had?", and they're off and running. No need for facts, it's pure speculation.

Fred Kaplan at Slate (can't get the link right now; I'll post it later) says that at most, Berger has destroyed any chance he had of being appointed anything in a Kerry administration. It's the way the story keeps getting inflated and more ridiculous that is baffling, except as political fodder. Berger stuck documents in his socks? Really? And no one thought to stop him? Just wait 10 months and then tell Fox News? Or that Berger swiped the documents to pass them on to Kerry's campaign. Except that Kerry had access to the documents himself as a Senator:
This makes no sense. As a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Kerry could obtain the documents -- which had also been supplied to the 9/11 commission -- of his own accord. More than that, Kerry's chief national security adviser, Rand Beers, was a staff member of the National Security Council, working on terrorism, under Presidents Clinton and Bush. He saw these documents, probably helped write some of them; he could certainly tell Kerry about them.

It's back to the Days of Clinton, when the slightest misstep (and believe me, it was a serious misstep. Berger shouldn't get an appointment after this. It was sloppy and inexcusable, and just because nothing happened didn't mean that something couldn't have happened.) launches a thousand conspiracy theories, and perception trumps reality.

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