Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Missing Words, Missing Bolts

[Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House By Valerie Plame Wilson (Hardcover) --Simon & Schuster (2007)]

Redacted words, sentences, even whole pages. Heavy black lines on a rampage. Why? National security.

After all, the CIA can’t allow Valerie Plame Wilson to write an autobiography without its overkill oversight. Of course, the same spineless buttkissers will let the White House get away with outing one of its agents, i.e., the author.

It’s all about secrecy. Or should I say politics?

Dirty politics. Of the Rovian kind. No hard proof that Karl Rove was one of the perpetrators of Plame’s exposure but knowing his reputation… Anyway, Karl is no longer lurking in the halls (or dungeons) of the White House, is he?

How dirty did it get? Once again, Plame doesn’t have hard evidence, but…

Check out pages 250-252. Plame and her husband Joe Wilson get audited by the IRS. No reason, according to their accountant, why their file would be red flagged. Sounds Nixonian, enemies list and all that.

And don’t forget all the antics with dirty tricks. Plame details the incident of the missing bolts. One day a groundskeeper noticed some bolts were AWOL from the upper deck on the side of her house, a deck about fifty feet in the air. It wasn’t like the missing bolts fell to the ground; they weren’t around at all. These were large metal pieces. Not easy to misplace.

Plame contacted the owner of the firm that rebuilt the deck the year before. He was alarmed, telling her to stay off it. Plame thought it doubtful the workmen forgot to properly secure the supports. So what happened with the bolts? Who knows?

And if the missing bolts had remained unnoticed? Too much weight on the upper deck during a party and oops!! What fun. Potentially fatal fun.

Maybe there’s The Fun House inside The White House.


X. Dell said...

Compelling, her sentence structure in this passage, and her use of words (ahem!).

As you know, red-flagging of tax returns was a staple of the covert services during the heyday of Cointelpro. It's illegal, but finding evidence to the contrary is difficult.

This reminds me of the time I was reading Marchetti and Marks' The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence on the subway. The editor decided to insert blank spaces for redacted material, which means that there are pages of blank paper staring back at you at some points. Wouldn't you know, someone was looking over my shoulder at a particularly lengthy redacted passage. She looked at me rather strangely.

Ray said...

X. Dell:

You want to get stares? Sometimes I check out the propaganda and media manipulation by certain magazines like the teenybopper and women's titles. Ride the subway with a copy of Teen People, Sixteen, or Cosmo -- that'll attract attention. (And they really stare when you tell them you're not gay.)

What's amusing about some of those titles is that they keep recycling the same type of articles over and over again, even twenty or thirty years later. Like Cosmo and its "How To Get Him Hot And Crazy" features.

Most young men are in heat anyway. It doesn't take much for a woman to make one "crazy." But the faithful female fantasizers of Cosmo are too stupid to realize that.