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"Follow the Money" | Main | Victory of the Blogosphere Bonus Top Ten:
Top Ten Dan Rather "Folksy Texas Sayings" About What Went Wrong
September 20, 2004

Orchestrated By "Political Partisans"?

Baseball Crank "raises some questions" I'd like to see Dan Rather, Terry McAuliffe, and Joshua Micah Brandybuck Hezekiah Cougar Mellancamp Marshall all answer.

Ben Barnes supposedly didn't contact 60 Minutes until the Republcian National Convention. Fair enough.

But there does seem to have been a kind of stealth buzz campaign going on on left-wing blogsites before then.

Josh Marshall, August 22nd:

Now, as fate would have it, Ben Barnes is a Democrat. Was then, is now. And he supports John Kerry.

But he's never really spoken openly about how he helped Bush hop in front of everyone else or other aspects of the president's abbreviated military service, about which he is said to know a great deal.

Maybe now would be the time?

Texas politics is different from Washington politics. Dems and Republicans are often tight. And I believe Barnes' is a state lobbyist nowadays. So while supporting the Dem nominee may be an acceptable deviation, nailing the president on the Guard issue in what is now a Republican-dominated state probably wouldn't be good for business.

But maybe now's the time for him to step up to the plate ...

Can't we get Molly Ivins or some other worthy to put in a call? Maybe just ask him what he thinks of the Swift Boat business.

Josh Marshall, August 27th:

You'll want to link through to this one -- it's a video clip of Ben Barnes, the former Speaker of the House in Texas, the guy who got President Bush into the Texas Air National Guard.

I'm told the tape is from a recent Kerry rally and in it Barnes says the following...


Now, I don't know what Ben Barnes looks like. And I do not independently know the provenance of the tape. But I've spoken to two sources who know Barnes. And they tell me that that is Barnes on the tape.

One of those two men is Jim Moore -- co-author of Bush's Brain. Moore told me this afternoon that the clip is from June 8th of this year, at a Kerry rally in Austin. Moore assures me that the tape is legitimate.

I placed a call to Barnes' office and left a message with one of his assistants; but the request for comment has not yet been returned.

Josh Marshall, September 1st:

bit more on Ben Barnes, the guy from Texas who got President Bush into the Guard way-back-when.

Apparently, the attacks on Kerry's war record just proved too much for him. As we've noted previously, for almost a decade now Barnes has gone to great lengths to avoid causing trouble for the president on the Guard matter. And the Bush folks in Texas have made it clear to him during this election cycle that if he spills the beans about the president that they'll do everything in their power to put him out of business in the state (Barnes is now a lobbyist). And that heat has, I'm told, increased dramatically in recent days.

But apparently those threats haven't done the trick because he has already taped a lengthy interview slated to appear in the not-too-distant future on a major national news show in which he'll describe the strings he pulled to keep Bush out of Vietnam and apparently more.

(Between you and me, according to my three sources on this, Barnes told his story to Dan Rather -- remember, the Texas connection -- for 60 Minutes.)

Now, I'm not saying that Joshua Boutros-Boutros Marshall did anything wrong. He's a transparent political hack; he's supposed to pimp bullshit claims by partisans like Barnes. That's his job.

But I'm curious:

Who where Marshall's sources?

Or, more specifically: Were Marshall's sources at CBS or in the DNC?

Based on Marshall's record, I think there's a good chance he was getting this from the DNC.

And if the DNC knew that all of this was coming before even CBS did...

Well-- I hope Mr. Marshall will forgive me when I echo him and say I question the timing.

And one more question: Was Barnes' change of heart about "speaking out" on his claims as "sudden" as has been suggested, or was this all part of a long-planned DNC-CBS joint venture?

This looks less like a meticulously-researched "breaking news scoop" and more like the publicity campaign for a long-scheduled theatrical release -- Fahrenheit 9-08 -- with Josh Marshall serving up the teasers, sneak previews and general pre-release hype, a kind of hyperpartisan hack Harry Knowles of Ain't It Cool News.

Since the liberal media is breathlessly reporting the Republican affiliation of those who truthfully debunked the forgeries, perhaps they'll soon become interested in the Democratic affiliation of those who created, delivered, and breathlessly hyped the forgeries and the Ben Barnes "suprise revelation."

I expect they'll be right on that.

Any. Minute. Now.

He Questions the Timing of My Questioning the Timing Update: Memento Moron wants to know what the hell took me so long.

Well, I've been too busy planning what color Ducati I'm going to buy, when all that crazy blog-money I've been dreaming of finally starts rolling in.

Any. Minute. Now.

digg this
posted by Ace at 03:32 PM

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