Sunday, October 07, 2007

Ex aides search for their souls

By Libby

The WaPo profiles a few of the major players in the horde of departed White House staffers and although it portrays their remarks as soul-searching, it sounds more like searching for excuses to salve their battered consciences to me.

I'm struck by a couple of points. None seem to grasp the enormity of their betrayal of the American people by propping up the White House's destructive agenda. They couch their insights in terms of relativity rather than reality and point the finger of blame on the others, clinging to the belief they had a good plan that was badly executed. None seem to take real responsibility for their personal hand in the mismanagement.

The other thing that stands out and hadn't really thought about before is how young and inexperienced these people who were entrusted with overseeing world shaking decisions on vital policy. I think of the difference in my understanding of the complexity of being from when I was in my 20s and 30s to my views now and realize the biggest problem with our government today is that there really aren't any adults in charge.

Meanwhile, if like myself, you were wondering what Rove has been up to since he skulked out of town -- well -- he's laughing all the way to the bank.

Rove already has multiple options. While on the phone from Dallas before a meeting on the future Bush library, he excused himself to answer a knock at the hotel door. A package arrived and he ripped it open. "I sign it and suddenly I'm a lot richer," he said with Rovian mirth. What kind of contract, he would not say. It was not a book contract; Bartlett said nearly 20 publishers are competing for Rove's book.

And if anyone is thinking he's really not still intimately involved in the White House machinations, think again.

Rove said his book will be worth it. "It will be vicious and slashing," he promised. He sounded as if he was joking. Sort of. But it's not as if he has gone off the reservation. At the end of the interview, he asked that his quotes be sent to the White House first. "I'm still a cog in the great machine," he explained.

He left so he could operate under the radar and to rebrand himself as more than Bush's boy. Meanwhile, the youngsters who fled find their loyalty to a corrupt administration has earned them an opportunity to make a good living in academia and on the talk circuit. But they sure do miss their GOP issued Blackberrys. You know -- the ones they weren't really illegally conducting government business on.

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