That's why it was crucial for Libby to claim (however implausibly) that he "did not recall," when he talked to Russert, etc., that he knew Wilson's wife was a spook--even though he'd already been told it weeks earlier, as his notes suggested, and it was a salient, unforgettable fact about one of the hot controversies of the day. And that's why a perjury charge based on Libby's "I did not recall" falsehood, if that's what it is, isn't some sort of ticky-tack technical charge. .. .11:07 A.M.
Faster Second Thoughts:
"[I]f I were doing that piece again, maybe I'd do things differently."
That's the NYT's Todd Purdum on his smarmily glowing front-page Tim Russert piece. He wrote it yesterday. ... P.S.: Kf's precision sensor technology--including, but not limited to, a close reading of Purdum's buck-passing reference to his "editors"--detects some sort of highly effective, behind the scenes lobbying campaign on Russert's behalf, a sort of unseen Tenth Planet bending press coverage Russert's way (which is the way it has been going, in the NYT, and in Time). ... Why? It may be because Russert's still-secret account of his conversation with indicted Cheney aide Libby is 100% right and Libby's is a total lie, and Russert's people can convince reporters of this. But NBC also has to worry that organizations like Accuracy in Media will get some traction with the argument that because Russert's now a player in the Bush drama, he should recuse himself from covering it. ... 11:53 P.M.
Vices Carry: A dessert-like smell envelops Manhattan. Where is Adam Gopnik when you need him? The evildoers will stop at nothing, etc. ... Except it's not not a non-joke! Are all these reports just an artifact of greater awareness? The N.Y. Daily News says, "The last mysterious smell to pervade much of the city was a noxious odor in December 1969." That's a long time ago. ... [Syrup-blogging is so last Thursday--ed I had technical difficulties, which included thinking of a joke.] 1:06 P.M.
Prediction: at least three high level Bush Administration personnel indicted and possibly one or more very high level unindicted co-conspirators.
Fitzgerald Doesn't Need Russert: Is it "Scooter" Libby's word against that of NBC's Tim Russert and two other reporters? That's how many people are portraying the pending perjury case against Cheney's chief of staff. Here's the estimable Tom Maguire:
The indictment of Lewis Libby pits the word of Mr. Libby against that of three reporters: Matt Cooper of TIME, Judy Miller, currently with the NY Times, and Tim Russert of NBC News.