Thursday, May 29, 2008

Scott McClellan

For the past couple of days, this Scott McCellan thing has been a big story. Briefly, McCellan is a former White House press secretary, under Bush. He has a pending book called "What Happened?", and it's surprisingly critical of the White House. Among the juiciest tidbits, he refers to the selling of the Iraq war as "propaganda", states that the Bush White House operated in "permanent campaign mode", and that he was deceived by some people in the White House, primarily Karl Rove and "Scooter" Libby.

Needless to say, this has been a subject of great controversy. This article from Think Progress is funny because it starts with excerpts from Bush and others raving about McCellan when he exited the White House in '06. Then it has some of the same people, two years later, saying that he's "full of crap" and that he's a "traitor." And he isn't the first White House official to come out against this administration either. In the eyes of this White House, going out and speaking the truth about your experiences is considered to be a treasonaous act.

But I also don't agree with the response of some on the Left. While most are praising McCellan, and rightfully so (going out and criticizing this administration is creating a big risk for yourself), some are indignant in that he didn't go out sooner, like when he was serving in his capacity as Press Secretary. That point isn't entirely invalid. But I look at it from my perspective, as someone who has had to do jobs I really didn't want to do. I'm sure everyone could share this sentiment. We've all had jobs that we really didn't want, but we did them to survive. And being a White House Press Secretary is a fairly prestigious job, and without saying, it looks good on one's resume. So he had to do things that were unsavory; so what, we all have.

Although what he's writing about is probably true, I do think it was mainly for the money. This book's probably going to sell a lot of copies. If it was a tome heaping praise on Bush and the White House? No, it wouldn't sell that much.

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