We are now approaching the endgame both for Gonzales and the quest for the Higgs boson, the God particle. I thought the second coming of a Monica would be what doomed Gonzo. But now we have proof from John Ashcroft's former Deputy Attorney General James Comey that beneath the affable exterior of our A.G. lurks the cold heart of Tony Soprano.
Meanwhile in Cern, the Large Hadron Collider is about to begin its quest for the Higgs boson, perhaps the first (if you're a Christian) or only (if not) true son of God.
According to Fabiola Gianotti, a Cern physicist, when research begins:
â€œSomething must happen.â€
The accelerator, Dr. Gianotti explained, would take physics into a realm of energy and time where the current reigning theories simply do not apply, corresponding to an era when cosmologists think that the universe was still differentiating itself, evolving from a primordial blandness and endless potential into the forces and particles that constitute modern reality. (LINK: Long NY Times Science article)
Scientists at Cern hope to create the Higgs boson, which they call the God particle. They are attempting to recreate the condition that last prevailed when the universe was less than a trillionth of a second old.
Subtract a trillionth of a second from that moment and we may have finally identified God, who or (more precisely) what pushed of the button that started IT ALL.
Will the scientists find God before we see Gonzo depart to spend more time with his family?
We learned yesterday during Comey's startling and powerful testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee how Gonzales and Andrew Card tried to secretly go to a critically ill Attorney General Ashcroft's hospital bedside to "persuade" him to sign off on Bush's warrantless spying program, despite the fact that he had designated his deputy to be the acting-attorney general.
When an aide to Ashcroft alerted Comey to this devious plan he raced to the hosptial, blue lights flashing and siren blaring to beat the president's men since he and Ashcroft and other top Justice Department officials had already decided the authorization as written could not be signed off on by the Justice Department.
Mr. Comey told Ashcroft what was about to happen, and then here's what followed:
When the White House officials appeared minutes later, Mr. Gonzales began to explain to Mr. Ashcroft why they were there. Mr. Comey said Mr. Ashcroft rose weakly from his hospital bed, but in strong and unequivocal terms, refused to approve the eavesdropping program.
â€œI was angry,â€ Mr. Comey told the committee. â€œ I had just witnessed an effort to take advantage of a very sick man, who did not have the powers of the attorney general because they had been transferred to me. I thought he had conducted himself in a way that demonstrated a strength I had never seen before, but still I thought it was improper.â€
Mr. Gonzales and Mr. Card quickly departed, but Mr. Comey said he soon got an angry phone call from Mr. Card, demanding that he come to the White House. Mr. Comey said he replied: â€œAfter what I just witnessed, I will not meet with you without a witness, and I intend that witness to be the solicitor general of the United States.â€
(New York Times article, LINK)
I hope these revelations convince a few open-minded Bushies that this is like being confronted with the bloody remains of your neighbor’s pet chickens, proving that your lovable floppy eared puppy turns into a blood thirsty poultry predator at night.
It took the threat of mass resignations from the Justice Department, including both Attorney General Ashcroft, and FBI Director, Robert Muelller, to prompt the powers that be to make unspecified changes in the program. However, the Justice Department still didn’t sign it.
Unable to persuade Ashcroft, who was recovering from surgery, Gonzales and Andrew Card, then the White House chief of staff, advised Bush to allow the program to go forward, Comey said. Bush reauthorized the program without certification from the Justice Department that it was legal.
Bush’s decision sparked a crisis within the upper ranks of the Justice Department, Comey said. It prompted discussion of a mass resignation, including by Mueller, Ashcroft, Comey, and other top officials. But after word of the threat reached the White House, Bush agreed to unspecified changes to the program and the resignations did not occur, Comey said. (Boston Globe article, LINK)
As much as I want to live to see scientists at Cern discover the nature of God and the universe, as an American living in these troubled times, I hope Bush has his come to Higgs moment first.
The only hope is that Bush has a conscience because those like Gonzales and Cheney and Wolfowitz, to name but three, do not. Bush, as the narcissist narcissists wish they could be, needs to realize that in his quest for glory he has relied on these Tony Sopranos to further his goals.
He needs to replace them with people of character like General David Petraeus and, from all I can tell so far, his new war czar Army Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute. LINK
“Bush administration lawlessness so shocking it would have been unbelievable coming from a less reputable source.”
“That Mr. Gonzales is now in charge of the department he tried to steamroll may be most disturbing of all.”
JAMES B. COMEY, the straight-as-an-arrow former No. 2 official at the Justice Department, yesterday offered the Senate Judiciary Committee an account of Bush administration lawlessness so shocking it would have been unbelievable coming from a less reputable source.
Mr. Comey’s vivid depiction, worthy of a Hollywood script, showed the lengths to which the administration and the man who is now attorney general were willing to go to pursue the surveillance program. First, they tried to coerce a man in intensive care — a man so sick he had transferred the reins of power to Mr. Comey — to grant them legal approval. Having failed, they were willing to defy the conclusions of the nation’s chief law enforcement officer and pursue the surveillance without Justice’s authorization. Only in the face of the prospect of mass resignations — Mr. Comey, FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III and most likely Mr. Ashcroft himself — did the president back down. (Read entire editorial HERE)
One official who has been briefed by a European member of the board said the Bush administration proposal (about Wolfowitz) was deemed offensive by several members.
“The staff were absolutely horrified by what seemed to be the Bush administration’s disdain for a clear-cut case of corruption at the bank,” said one official. from article “Bank Board Rejects White House Proposal of Wolfowitz” in the Washington Post (LINK)
Is Tony Soprano clincally a sociopath or a bad, really really bad person? Here’s a good discussion from back in 2002: A Reckoning: Tony Soprano, his conscience, and other inconveniences. LINK Not much has changed since this was written except that Tony has killed a few more people.