Taint That A Shame

by digby

Today on MSNBC, Shuster had on Pat Buchanan who said that Obama reacted "abnormally" to the Blagojevich news and failed to disclose which of his aides may have spoken to the Governor about his seat. Harold Ford very ineffectually defended Obama. (He spent so much time validating Buchanan before making his point, it was hard to tell which side he was on.)

Shuster interrupted the back and forth to "clarify" the problem by showing that David Axelrod had said a couple of months ago that Obama was talking to the Governor about the seat, but last night amended his comments to say he was mistaken. Shuster parses this to suggest that they are being clever and trying to draw phony distinction between speaking directly and indirectly to the governor.

Buchanan replied:

Let me tell you, the problem is not that Rahm Emmanuel or Axelrod are involved in some deal.It is that they may be "tainted" by the fact that they talked to a Governor who is trolling and selling his Senate seat. They may have talked to him and if they did, they are supposed to report that to the US Attorney. Let me tell you Harold, a lot of my friends in the Nixon white house didn't do a thing when some guy came running in saying our guys just got caught breaking in and they didn't do anything with it.


As Bob Cesco pointed out earlier, "taint" is the word of the day, being used by wingnut bloviator all over the airwaves. And that's to be expected. It's what they do. But sadly, the MSM clones are running with devils once again. Shuster smelled blood:

Shuster: I agree with you Pat. And I think Obama needs to give a better clarification than he has and that he blew it on the first day.

But in any case we'll wait and see what happens tomorrow with Obama at his news conference tomorrow tomorrow where surely he's going to be asked about all of this again.

You can sure tell that Shuster cut his teeth at Fox during the Lewinsky pageant. It's politics as scandal theatre, where Obama is judged by his performance on opening night.

You can see by the energy and excitement among the gasbags that they want nothing more than to wallow in this thing as long as they can. They are terrifically bored by stories about bailouts and health care and the like. This is what they live for --- endless speculation about things which they can't possibly get answers for. (They must have closed down the Barbizon School of blond former prosecutors because we are seeing a slew of white guys in suits giving expert commentary so far. But perhaps the booking people just haven't sorted out their rolodexes yet.)

So it looks like it's game on, at least for a little while. What a nice Christmas present for the media.

Update: Arlen Specter says he's going to try to tank the Holder nomination on the basis of a Clinton scandal.

It's quite clever. They are just picking up right where they left off in 2000 as if the Bush administration never happened, perhaps even drawing lines between the old and new if they' play their cards right. And the press seems eager to go there with them.

I can see why they'd want to pretend the Bush years were just a bad dream. After all, they were exposed as shills and dupes for an immoral, incompetent president. But they still consider their glory days to be those they spent chasing trumped up Clinton corruption scandals and poking around in the president's pants. To the best of my knowledge they have never admitted in the smallest way that their obsession with tabloid scandal and character assassination was intrinsic to the disgusting, politics that came of age in that era. Why wouldn't they want to go back there? They had a ball.

Update II: Boehlert and Foser have been following this all day at County Fair. Ugh.