Goal posts moved, threat or not (Update — Lanny Davis discloses threats against him)
There’s major push back from the White House and supportive media this morning over whether Bob Woodward was “threatened,” with the emails indicating that the “you will regret” language came in a broader email. The defense of the White House is pretty typical, try to isolate not only the dissenter but also the language.
Woodward took the “you will regret” language as crossing the line after a heated conversation with White House official Gene Sperling, and after a week of the administration orchestrating attacks on Woodward. The “you will regret” language can’t be viewed in isolation — indeed Woodward in his explanations as to how he took the language didn’t view it in isolation, but as part of the overall campaign to isolate him.
Woodward was pretty clear about the context of the “you will regret” language prior to the emails being released, and the emails do little to change the context described by Woodward:
You can dispute whether this was a threat, but the release of the emails, which is being greeted by Obama defenders with great fanfare, really doesn’t change the story.
Another thing that has not changed is that Woodward was right about the subject of the yelling and “you will regret” verbiage, that the White House has moved the goal posts. Woodward was being attacked in the mainstream media and left-blogosphere long before the “you will regret” language was used.
And it all was in the context of politically defending the White House against any facts that would tend to negate the hyperbole and fear-mongering over the sequester. The goal posts were moved by the White House, and attacking the messenger Woodward has been part of the strategy from the get-go.
Video via Free Beacon:
UPDATE — It’s not just Bob Woodward who receives the treatment, Lanny Davis: White House told Washington Times to stop running my column or else…:
Listen to the entire audio, Davis discussed how he called the White House to complain about the threat, and was promised it would never happen again. You don’t make that promise unless it happened.
The swiftness with which the so-called journalists moved to defend Obama is amazing.
If a reporter’s in a dust-up w/ a powerful politician & your first reflex is to side with the pol, you’re not a journalist, you’re a flack.
— Jon Gabriel (@ExJon) February 28, 2013
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What’s funny (peculiar) is that everyone has known…for at least a decade…that entitlements were going to need to be cut.
If memory serves, I’ve read pieces by Deemocrats in their more lucid moments saying this. For years.
Obama PROMISED it in 2007-08.
It must be that DC Alzheimer’s…
Obama was going to take us to Candy Mountain, but instead stole our kidneys.
Hopefully The House has realized by now that they cannot negotiate with Obama’s speech writers. Pass your proposals and either the Senate will do nothing or have to negotiate in joint committee.
Third World thugs release criminal detainees to inflict emotional terror on the populace as a way to coerce the public into giving the thug the budget he wants. Third World thugs routinely violate their own laws and dictates. Third World thugs secretly assassinate their own citizens, including teenagers, without due process or any kind of judicial review. Third World thugs attempt to silence and isolate their opposition using coercive intimidation tactics. Woodward joins Fox News and Rush Limbaugh in the latter category.
Welcome to Obama’s America and the modern Democrat Party.
This story will soon fade, left to echo pitifully around the conservative blogosphere. So some White House aides yelled at a reporter. They’re just “passionate.” It happens.
There is NO ONE in the establishment media with the guts or will or even interest to cohere together all the different malfeasances and abuses of Obama into a total story and indictment they could sustain in the fashion of a Watergate. The idea of this happening is a joke.
“Nobody expects the Obama Inquisition!”
Lanny…My very favorite line is,”…and I’m an Obama supporter.”
Any..uummmm…whatcha’call sense of irony..paradox… Can’t make this s*** up-isums, there Lanny?
The White House’s bumbling “threat” response and urge to smear reminds me of a line from Woodward’s book, “All The Preseident Men” when Woodward and Bernstein realize just how coarse the WH can be and out of control it is on the Watergte matter:
“This picture of the White House was in sharp contrast to the smooth, well-oiled machine Bernstein was accustomed to reading about in the newspapers—those careful, disciplined, look-alike guards to the palace who were invariably referred to as “The President’s Men.'”
All The President’s Men, Chapter 2, p. 28
Second thought on Woodward: Game Theory
This guy knows Washington perhaps better than anyone. He is Mr. Washington and has been for decades.
So, is it an accident that there are now three serious attacks on the WH by Woodward in a week? No way. I am thinking he is priming the pump. He is hearing there is discord in the WH, and he is becoming an enemy of the WH to send a message to the disgruntled staff that Woodward – WH Enemy – can be trusted to continue to dish on BO and that they sould contact him with the dirt. Another book is in the works.
In other words, Woodward is not acting by happenstance or because of moral outrage here. He has a definte plan and agenda — heck, he is a DC guy and that is what they do.
I shall wait with anticipated delight to see that plan unfold.
George…SHOCKED is what I am at your level of cynicism, Dude!
And an excellent point, Sir.
I hope that is the case … surely not everyone wants to see the country go far left “communist”.
Another consideration … when Woodward gets what he feels is a genuine warning, it is better to go public and be on record. That might circumvent his horse’s head appearing in his bed, or his sudden death by surprise heart attack.
I wouldn’t put a violent administration response out of the question… After all, they have the killer drones.
When the dumbed down public chose free stuff instead of solutions, the administration took their thin victory as an overwhelming mandate and thus was born the thugoracy that we now have to endure.
Meanwhile, the limp impotent Republicans cry and wail but also are considering giving the anointed one unquestioned control of spending.
Welcome to the new Amerika..
It may just be because I am a suspicious, cynical sort. However I have to note that despite protestations of journalistic integrity [there is an oxymoron for you]; Woodward has been a staunchly loyal supporter of the Democrats in general and Buraq Hussein in particular from Watergate to date. As the reaction of the rest of the kept media shows; suddenly he is guilty of sedition and “Article 58” charges. One has to ponder why?
Your scenario is plausible, for sure. But there are other plausible scenarios. Consider China in 1956. After 5 years of purges and mass killings, the Party suddenly said that all the bad guys had been removed, and now it wanted the people to speak out with ideas to perfect the new China.
Mao said: Let 100 flowers bloom, let 100 schools of thought contend.
People spoke up. And in 1957 there was the “anti-Rightist Deviationist” purge, and millions more died.
While the kind of purge that happened in China is still restricted to White House nocturnal emissions; the tactic is still valid. He could just as well be drawing out those in the administration who would leak; not to use their information, but to get them to break cover for the benefit of the Left.
In a completely politicized and State controlled media, a sudden outbreak of integrity by reporters has to be looked at skeptically and as a possible enemy tactic.
Obama and his cabal think that they can say whatever and the swoon-istas will genuflect.
nope. It is a little “nope” now but growing bigger by the minutia.
Now Ron Fournier: Yeah, I Got the Abusive Treatment From the WH and the Same ‘You Will Regret This’ Threat.
That makes three (so far??) Bob Woodward, Lanny Davis & Ron Fournier.
Pass the popcorn…
Had to laugh at the comment from BobfromTexas on that Fournier column:
Fournier chiming in does add credence to this old Politico column –“The new ‘no comment’: F— off”
Release the phone call, itself. Precedent: Zimmerman/Trayvon
One angle to the current dispute definitely not covered …
If the sequester is aborted, the credit rating on T-bills will go down.
S. 388 would eliminate the automatic spending reductions scheduled to occur under current law for 2013 and would partially eliminate the reductions scheduled for 2014. The bill also would eliminate direct payments to certain agricultural producers, provide funding for agricultural disaster assistance, and exempt from sequestration all mandatory funding provided for the Department of Agriculture.
In addition, S. 388 would ensure that taxpayers with annual income above $5 million face an average tax rate of at least 30 percent on their income, and it would extend an existing per-barrel tax on oil production to oil produced from tar sands.
CBO and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) estimate that enacting the bill would increase budget deficits from changes in direct spending and revenues by $7.2 billion over the 2013-2023 period. Because enacting the legislation would affect direct spending and revenues, pay-as-you-go procedures apply.
The Senate can’t even make it deficit neutral.
Welcome to Chicago.