if you've been following the recent spate of federal prosecutorial firings by the Justice Department (and Alberto Gonzales) and thought to yourself "well, here's a new spin problem for Bush and Co.", perhaps you should take a look at this.
Seems there was another a few years back that smells just a bit coincidental and feels just a tad slimily familiar. Jack (Abram)off was being investigated (well, a lot of people were) for ties to corruption on the tiny island of Guam. just as the temporary (despite being in the position for a decade and being put there by Bush, Sr.) prosecuter was really getting going he was summarily demoted and a cousin of one of the "targets" was instated in his place (the cousin then recused himself due to confilct of interest and the whole issue of corruption went away). bad timing or good? abramoff brought down a few highly placed republican politicians when he was finally brought to justice here in the states. but why would Bush (or his handlers) worry so much about what happens in a protectorate? unless, of course, jack was making big money for republican politicians and big business (note the reference to sweatshops).
remember: in politics, the only species woth protecting is your own and the gophers digging your holes. and that is exactly what Jack was for the republican party: a gopher. he tunneled into where others couldn't be seen to go aboveground. and the only reason he got caught and couldn't be protected in the end was because he tried to sell indians some more infected blankets.
but this is merely a preamble to what is happening now. only eight out of the 93 federal prosecutors were fired or demoted. but of the eight only three had been given less than satisfactory evaluations. three were given positive evals and three were given satisfactory. one put away a couple of california republicans, one wasn't moving fast enough on voter fraud claims connected to democrats. one, in seattle, nobody knows why. one was removed to make way for a Karl Rove protege.
the administration and justice department fist claimed that all were removed due to poor performance evals. next, they said that while some were poor, others were just told to leave, because that's what a president can do. finally, alberto gonzales said mistakes were made and certain people speaking under oath to congress did so without all the proper information (when they were insisting that all removals were due to poor performance) and did not constitute perjury. he said he is responsible even though it's been proven that karl rove was bringing some of the complaints by republican politicians straight to him and the president and that the president "may have" related some of the complaints "informally" to gonzales.
it's also been proven that the move to purge the prosecutorial rolls of those not in line with administration policy dates back a few years. harriet miers, then legal counsel to bush, suggested firing all 93 and starting off fresh after the 2004 election. she was beaten down by those much smarter than her (i.e. karl rove), because the others knew all too well what kind of political backlash that would cause (damn skippy). instead, they took their time to figure out the worst of the worst (those who sought to punish people for breaking the law) vs. the best of the best (those who toed the administration's policies).
and, thus, this conservative republican administration is being seen for what it's best at: heavyhandedness vs. what it's worst at: evenhandedness.
if you hire a prosecuter to prosecute lawbreakers, then let that person prosecute them all.
p.s. i just realized that this is the two year anniversary of my starting this silly blog. happy birthday to me and to all squirrels.