G/G update

Maureen Dowd:

I’m still mystified by this story. I was rejected for a White House press pass at the start of the Bush administration, but someone with an alias, a tax evasion problem and Internet pictures where he posed like the “Barberini Faun” is credentialed to cover a White House that won a second term by mining homophobia and preaching family values?

At first when I tried to complain about not getting my pass renewed, even though I’d been covering presidents and first ladies since 1986, no one called me back. Finally, when Mr. McClellan replaced Ari Fleischer, he said he’d renew the pass – after a new Secret Service background check that would last several months.

In an era when security concerns are paramount, what kind of Secret Service background check did James Guckert get so he could saunter into the West Wing every day under an assumed name while he was doing full-frontal advertising for stud services for $1,200 a weekend? He used a driver’s license that said James Guckert to get into the White House, then, once inside, switched to his alter ego, asking questions as Jeff Gannon.

If you’re advertising a dodgy business on the web and someone finds out about it, it doesn’t constitute “digging into your personal life” — key words here being “advertising” and “business.” Not sure what part of that the right wingers fail to comprehend. Also, discussions of whether or not prostitution should be legal are completely irrelevant, just a further attempt to sidetrack the issue. Rightly or wrongly, prostitution is illegal, and if G/G was running an escort service, that means he was publicly advertising his criminal activity, apparently while also being granted access to the White House which was denied to an established columnist for the New York Times unless she would submit to an extensive and redundant FBI background check which he himself could never possibly have passed.

For the right wingers to pretend that there’s nothing interesting going on here is laughable. The only question is whether our cowed So-Called Liberal Media will actually investigate, or just continue to give everybody the benefit of the goddamned doubt.