Jewish World Review Oct. 3, 2003 /7 Tishrei, 5764

Bob Tyrrell

Bob Greene
JWR's Pundits
World Editorial
Cartoon Showcase

Mallard Fillmore

Michael Barone
Mona Charen
Linda Chavez
Ann Coulter
Greg Crosby
Larry Elder
Don Feder
Suzanne Fields
Paul Greenberg
Bob Greene
Betsy Hart
Nat Hentoff
David Horowitz
Marianne Jennings
Michael Kelly
Mort Kondracke
Ch. Krauthammer
Lawrence Kudlow
Dr. Laura
John Leo
David Limbaugh
Michelle Malkin
Chris Matthews
Michael Medved
MUGGER
Kathleen Parker
Wes Pruden
Sam Schulman
Amity Shlaes
Tony Snow
Thomas Sowell
Cal Thomas
Jonathan S. Tobin
Ben Wattenberg
George Will
Bruce Williams
Walter Williams
Mort Zuckerman

Consumer Reports

Is there a witch doctor in the house?


http://www.NewsAndOpinion.com | White House Special Advisor Karl Rove is in need of an exorcist. Perhaps a witch doctor will suffice. Whatever choice is made, I advise that the president get a master of the occult over to Rove's White House office immediately, and before another day of CNN broadcasts alarm the nation.

Anyone listening to CNN or reading the liberal press knows that something diabolical has happened to Rove. Thanks to columnist Robert Novak, a former American diplomat who goes by the swank name of Joseph C. Wilson IV and the extreme left-wing Nation magazine, Rove is being victimized by another Washington Black Cat News Story. A Black Cat News Story is a bizarre phenomenon known only to national news reporting, usually in Washington. It is an ominous, catastrophic story that, like a black cat, leaps across a public figure's path -- and, all of a sudden, that public figure's luck turns sour.

He is abandoned by friends. On his way to a photo-op with Kofi Annan, the zipper on his pants breaks. During a reception in the White House Rose Garden, an overhead bird evacuates on his new tie. The phone rings, and it is Arianna Huffington announcing that she will be his weekend houseguest -- and she is bringing her new boyfriend, the one with the ponytail who wears sandals.

You think I am kidding? These Black Cat News Stories can do a lot of damage. There was one years back that Vice President Dan Quayle had a girlfriend, a girlfriend in common with half the Republicans on Capitol Hill. There was another one that President George Bush I had a girlfriend. These Black Cat News Stories caused little damage in career terms, but they did tarnish reputations hitherto unsullied. Most such stories lack substance and usually die after a terrific media pothering.

Donate to JWR

The administration of Bush II has already suffered the Enron Black Cat News Story and the Sixteen Words Black Cat News Story. Yet sometimes the story really sends its victim into oblivion. There was the Black Cat News Story about White House Chief Of Staff John Sununu using government transportation to pursue his stamp collection. That was the end of Sununu. Is Rove headed for retirement and a weekend with Arianna?

The story supposedly hexing him is that in a July 14 column Novak wrote that "senior administrative officials" told him that Wilson had been recommended to serve on a CIA mission to Niger to investigate uranium transfers to Iraqi agents by his wife, Valerie Plame, whom Novak identified as a CIA "operative." Precisely what the term "operative" meant remains a mystery. However, two days later Novak's identification of Plame roused indignation from an unlikely source, the left-wing Nation, an otherwise anti-CIA publication that had never minded this sort of outing in the past.

Soon Plame's husband jumped in. He had suffered the inspiration that Novak's "two senior administration officials" were actually one official, the unsuspecting Rove. And he was even angrier than the Nation. Wilson announced that he would like "to see whether or not we can get Karl Rove frog-marched out of the White House in handcuffs." Revealing the identity of an undercover CIA agent is a crime. By the way, Wilson is a writer as well as a diplomat. In March, a very critical essay of the Bush foreign policy appeared under his name in the extreme left-wing Nation.

Wilson believes that his criticism of the Bush administration motivated Rove to expose his wife. Now Rove has been a brilliant political strategist for three decades, but the plot that Wilson attributes to Rove is so fanciful I cannot imagine it ever even being adopted for a prime-time television melodrama.

The White House denies that Rove was Novak's source, and for his part Wilson seems to have backed off a bit on his accusation, saying he has no evidence Rove was involved. Thus my guess is that if the White House hangs in there, this story, too, will die. Rove is too much the pro to have been involved in such a thing.

The only matter that troubles me about the episode is that the CIA would employ a man as left-wing as Wilson to go to Niger unless they planned to leave him there. Unfortunately, he has returned.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in Washington and in the media consider "must reading." Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.


JWR contributor Bob Tyrrell is editor in chief of The American Spectator. Comment by clicking here.

09/26/03: Funny Girly-Boy
09/18/03: Send Arafat to Paris!
09/15/03: The soi-disant party of Latinos comes down hard on a successful Latino
09/05/03: Placating the carpers
08/29/03: A melange of one-issue enthusiasts will win?
08/07/03: Angry partisans
07/31/03: Why no ‘holy cities ’ in America?
07/25/03: They underestimate not only the president, but the American people
07/18/03: The irascible, bigoted Harry Truman was a product of his times
07/11/03: A grand affair of hot colors and surprisingly sedate audience participation
07/04/03: In search of anti-Americanism and the perfect bullfight
06/26/03: Calling on London
06/20/03: Too upsetting for the evening news?
06/12/03: Rain(es)ing Clintoon myths
06/05/03: Hillary-ous is pathetic
05/29/03: Shakedown
05/22/03: End of the last great persecution of the 20th century?
05/15/03 :‘Grey’ turns to grim at Times
05/08/03: The only intellectual force in Western history to gain moral superiority by being wrong
05/01/03: Dinning with Tom Wolfe: More lessons in nusual aspects of American life, hitherto ignored
04/28/03: Ambuscade at scholarly frontier
04/21/03: Stars in search of a galaxy
04/10/03: Baghdad Bob and Tom Daschle
03/31/03: When the media itself becomes the story
03/20/03: Revealed! Estrada is a gifted linguist -- a Japanese-American fluent in Spanish
03/14/03: Genuinely in charge
03/10/03: Stalin and Saddam
03/05/03: They just cannot stomach a protracted alliance with the Bushies
02/25/03: Identity gridlock
02/18/03: People calling Dean a fruitcake are underestimating his political savvy
02/13/03: The new political establishment
01/30/03: The time is now
01/27/03: Witnessing self-love by people completely incapable of self-criticism
01/21/03: Of course our kiddies are depressed
01/13/03: Why is it that Official Washington still believes that a tax reduction means a revenue reduction?
01/02/03: Missing Moi
12/27/02: The grizzled and menacing-looking senator in Confederate drag is a Dem
12/24/02: Uprooting Christianity in the Holy Land
12/20/02: Under fire, Lott showed an ignobleness that is embarrassing
11/26/02: Bartley's enemies have been routed
11/14/02: Clarence Thomas and the segregationist Mississippi sheriff
11/07/02: I muffed up
10/31/02: Is the American university turning its back on change, on progress?
10/24/02: So why aren't the Dems buoyant?
10/17/02: Mourning the loss of the "yellow-belly"
10/10/02: American politics at its most ignominious
10/03/02: A man above the law, a bully
09/26/02: Is Bob Greene a victim of an anti-Clinton backlash?
09/19/02: I knew Mafiosi and
09/12/02: Chickens and poseurs
09/05/02: Sympathizing with the Europols
08/29/02: 9-11 did not change us forever
08/22/02: Public persons frivoling with serious matters
08/15/02: Beachcombing among the fat of the land
08/08/02: They pave the way for corruption, not personal responsibility
08/01/02: Believing the unbelievable
07/25/02: The congressional posse comitatus
07/18/02: Cosmopolitan Arab fashion
07/11/02: What the prez actually knows
07/04/02: The vindication of a truly original thinker
06/27/02: The perfect book for Hillary
06/20/02: To say that they were ordinary is not to slight them
06/13/02: Daschle must begin to act like an adult
06/06/02: Lack of "intelligence" --- and sheer stupidity
05/30/02: Revealing a carefully guarded media secret
05/23/02: In these times, thank Heaven for Clinton!
05/16/02: Fast Times at the Church of the Nativity
05/09/02: "Name the Prettiest Suicide Bomber"
05/02/02: Vindication for the Boy Scouts
04/25/02: A topic almost no other columnist will touch
04/18/02: 'Conventional Wisdom' --- and those who defy it
04/11/02: Let the Sun shine in
04/05/02: Hooded men of color in sheets
04/01/02: A McCain-Feingold Act for Hollywood
03/21/02: Yakkin' on Yates
03/15/02: No role for Paul Volcker in Enron: the movie
03/07/02: My membership in the Communist Party U.S.A.
02/27/02: This award is bestowed by 'contrarians'
02/21/02: Mike Tyson: Made for Washington?
02/14/02: Enron as underdog?
02/07/02: Freed from the presence of money -- hard or soft -- most politicians would be just as bad
01/31/02: Needed: Bush to make a preemptive strike against his enemies . Ones who'd like to see him fail even during war
01/24/02: Hucksters will move on to make their next marks
01/17/02: Debonair prez should begin to do the High Life
01/10/02: Move over Twinkies --- "the acne medicine made him do it!"
01/03/02: Leaving the Nazis looking comparatively humane
12/27/01: A "self-made journalist"
12/20/01: Calamities and unanticipated benefits
12/13/01: America's grief ought not to give comfort to those who caused it
12/06/01: Leahy, the strict civil libertarian!? A short-term exploiter of the Constitution is more like it
11/29/01: Welcome to Afghan, Maryland?
11/26/01: So, why don't more folks hate us?
11/15/01: America's quagmire and other certainties
11/09/01: No longer the smug statists, the prodigal Keynesians?
11/01/01: The New Seriousness
10/25/01: Bright lights and the Taliban
10/18/01: Is bin-Laden propaganda from Western intelligence?
10/12/01: No yellow ribbons
10/05/01: Bubba's back --- again!
09/28/01: Exposing peacetime's frauds
09/21/01: So protected, we're vulnerable
09/14/01: At Barbara Olson's home
09/11/01: Duh! All conservatives are racists
08/31/01: Arafat's terrorists have created their own hell
08/24/01: Time for some political prophecy
08/16/01: They claim to be doing so much good
08/10/01: Visiting the source of the White House braintrust
08/03/01: Morality and reality
07/31/01: Blinded by success?
07/24/01: The latest Kennedy capitulation in Massachusetts
07/13/01: Talk about tawdry
07/06/01: Delighting in the Dictator
06/29/01: The G-dphobes
06/21/01: Fashionable Washington is sempiternally in a stew
06/15/01: The limits of hypocrisy
06/08/01: Flagging our general apathy

© 2001, Creators Syndicate