The Libby Verdict, Rule of Law, and Conservative Divorce from Reality

Discussion of the Libby trial was always about more than the question of obstruction of justice for which he was found guilty. The most important issues related to the information exposed regarding the Bush administration’s dishonesty in taking the nation to war and the lengths they would go to discredit those who tried to expose them. These issues have been discussed many times and on many blogs but there is also another issue to come out of this case. This case provides another example of the disregard conservatives have for both rule of law and for reality.

Immediately after the verdict was released we’ve seen many conservatives calling for a pardon.  We have a respected Republican prosecutor proving to a jury that a law was broken but this doesn’t matter. To the modern conservative mind laws may be violated if by their own.

This is largely rationalized by a number of myths spread by the right wing noise machine and, as is usually the case, repeated by right wing pundits and bloggers without any attempt at fact checking. We’ve heard false claims that there was no crime because Plame wasn’t a covert agent. There have been numerous smears against Wilson to attempt to discredit his claims, but he has been vindicated when his claims have been investigated. Media Matters has an excellent round up of the conservative myths.

Just as conservatives ignore the consensus of scientific thought on subjects such as evolution and climate change they ignore reality on the Plame case. All their myths have been refuted. Testimony at the trial revealed further insights into the manner in which the Bush administration operates. If conservatives really acted on their rhetorical distrust of big government they would react to this case by wanting to throw Bush and Cheney out of power, not by calling for a pardon for one of their flunkies.


  1. 1
    Minor Ripper says:

    Quite frankly I’ve found this Libby business very complicated, and a bit boring. Thankfully, Stephen Colbert explains it to me in this video:

  2. 2
    janet says:

    I heard Kate O’Byrne or whatever her name is explain on Hardball that because Clinton admitted his lies, he deserved to be impeached. But since Libby maintains his innocence, he must really not be guilty. WTF? It was the most ridiculous and outrageous rationalization I have ever heard in my life for a pardon. They have absolutely no regard for the truth and the fact that a jury found Libby guilty which means he—-is GUILTY!

    So let’s just let everyone out of prison who claims to be innocent.

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