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By codewarrior.wins ·
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Penn Jillette?s daughter born with a superhero handle - Blogging Baby - www.bloggingbaby.com _

by codewarrior.wins In reply to CodeWarriorz Thoughts

<a href="http://www.bloggingbaby.com/entry/1234000327045625/">Penn Jillette?s daughter born with a superhero handle - Blogging Baby - www.bloggingbaby.com _</a> Penn Jillette, of Penn & Teller fame, has named his new baby daughter this. Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. That?s not a typo. Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. She was born on Friday, and Penn and his wife Emily are, umm, proud of their little superhero-to-be.
<br />========================SNIP==============
<br />What a stupid motherfucking asshole of a dad this poor girl has..he named her Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette...you ******* ASSHOLE Jillette....**** YOU!<p><div class="blogdisclaim"><a href="http://codewarriorz.blogspot.com/2005/07/penn-jillettes-daughter-born-with.html">This post originally appeared on an external website</a></div>

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Journal Gazette | 07/06/2005 | Why isn?t Novak facing jail like other reporters?

by codewarrior.wins In reply to CodeWarriorz Thoughts

<div xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml">Why isn?t Novak facing jail like other reporters?
<br />
<br />By Carol Marin
<br />
<br />
<br />CHICAGO ? I just can?t figure it out. Why in the world is New York Times reporter Judith Miller headed to jail next week while my Sun-Times colleague Robert Novak is not? Why is a reporter who has written not one single word about a CIA operative about to be sent to the federal slammer while another reporter, the one who actually broke the story, isn?t in similar trouble?
<br />
<br />Don?t get me wrong. I like and respect Bob Novak and don?t want to ever see him in an orange jump suit. Or think about him being strip-searched upon intake to federal prison. Then again, I never even met Judith Miller, and I don?t want that happening to her, either.
<br />
<br />I called Novak in Washington to see if he could help me make sense of all this. ?I can?t say anything,? he said, citing advice of counsel and the pending federal investigation.
<br />
<br />This is a confusing story that centers on two critical and, in this case, competing values: the rule of law vs. the need of reporters to protect their sources. This is, in my opinion, also a story of an over-zealous federal prosecutor and a mostly timid press corps.
<br />
<br />It was two years ago this month that former Ambassador Joseph Wilson tore into the Bush administration for going to war with Iraq, in part, on claims that Saddam Hussein was in hot pursuit of yellow cake uranium from Africa. Wilson said the administration?s claim was bogus because he was the guy the CIA sent to find out.
<br />
<br />It was Novak who then wrote a column citing ?two senior administration officials? who cast doubt on Wilson?s mission. They told Novak it was Wilson?s wife, a CIA operative named Valerie Plame, who sent him to Africa. The implication was that it was a meaningless junket.
<br />
<br />Who were those ?two senior administration officials? and what business did they have outing a supposedly ?covert? CIA operative?
<br />
<br />Enter Chicago?s own U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, who was appointed special prosecutor to find out. With a federal grand jury at his disposal, Fitzgerald began questioning not only administration officials but members of the press.
<br />
<br />Now, two years later, the investigation is heading to a close. And for some reason that most of us have trouble understanding, two reporters other than Novak are risking jail. Though Matthew Cooper of Time magazine wrote about Plame after Novak did and Judith Miller of the New York Times never wrote about her at all, they refused to identify sources with whom they discussed the matter, and so a federal judge has ordered them to jail.
<br />
<br />As I write this, Time magazine has caved and, against Cooper?s wishes, handed over his notes. Miller is now the lone holdout.
<br />
<br />What no one understands, myself included, is Novak?s silence. Can he confirm he got a subpoena? ?I can?t do that,? he told me. Can he explain the distinction between himself and these two reporters? ?I can?t get into that,? he said.
<br />
<br />For 41 years, Novak built his career and reputation by asking the toughest of questions. Now, the tables turned, he refuses to answer them. Isn?t that, I asked, grounds for criticism?
<br />
<br />?No,? Novak told me, ?because this is a criminal investigation.?
<br />
<br />By any standard, it is a curious criminal investigation. Even the authors of the 1982 federal law that made it illegal to disclose the identity of a ?covert? CIA operative have gone on record saying in this particular case the law does not appear to have been broken. Why? Because, according to federal legal experts Victoria Toensing and Bruce Sanford, Valerie Plame wasn?t working covertly, and the CIA, when contacted by Novak in advance of his story, never offered any objection to him publishing her name.
<br />
<br />OK, if that?s true, what?s the law that?s been broken?
<br />
<br />It boils down to this. Fitzgerald, in his zeal, has made reporters the criminals here and taken them to federal court to force them to disclose their sources. Though there are reporter shield laws in most states, there is no similar protection federally. By that standard, Cooper and Miller, ordered in court to give up their sources, break the law by not disclosing. With Time magazine buckling, Cooper may not go to jail, but it looks like Miller will.
<br />
<br />Has there been a hue and cry about all of this from the media? Not enough. Not even we at the Sun-Times, in my view, have done enough to trumpet what I think should be our profound outrage at what?s going on. Novak is certainly entitled to protect his legal rights as he sees fit, but this is an issue that affects every working journalist.
<br />
<br />But I fear it?s too late. The damage has been done, or as the Bush administration likes to say, ?Mission Accomplished.? Our profession, which relies on anonymous sources for everything from Watergate to Hired Truck investigations, looks lame and weak and fearful. And any budding Deep Throats, these days, have far less reason to risk a trip to the parking garage.
<br />
<br />
</div><p><div class="blogdisclaim"><a href="http://codewarriorz.blogspot.com/2005/07/journal-gazette-07062005-why-isnt.html">This post originally appeared on an external website</a></div>

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Penn Jillette?s daughter born with a superhero handle - Blogging Baby - www.bloggingbaby.com _

by codewarrior.wins In reply to CodeWarriorz Thoughts

<a href="http://www.bloggingbaby.com/entry/1234000327045625/">Penn Jillette?s daughter born with a superhero handle - Blogging Baby - www.bloggingbaby.com _</a> Penn Jillette, of Penn & Teller fame, has named his new baby daughter this. Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. That?s not a typo. Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. She was born on Friday, and Penn and his wife Emily are, umm, proud of their little superhero-to-be.
<br />========================SNIP==============
<br />What a stupid motherfucking asshole of a dad this poor girl has..he named her Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette...you ******* ASSHOLE Jillette....**** YOU!<p><div class="blogdisclaim"><a href="http://codewarriorz.blogspot.com/2005/07/penn-jillettes-daughter-born-with.html">This post originally appeared on an external website</a></div>

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Journal Gazette | 07/06/2005 | Why isn?t Novak facing jail like other reporters?

by codewarrior.wins In reply to CodeWarriorz Thoughts

<div xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml">Why isn?t Novak facing jail like other reporters?
<br />
<br />By Carol Marin
<br />
<br />
<br />CHICAGO ? I just can?t figure it out. Why in the world is New York Times reporter Judith Miller headed to jail next week while my Sun-Times colleague Robert Novak is not? Why is a reporter who has written not one single word about a CIA operative about to be sent to the federal slammer while another reporter, the one who actually broke the story, isn?t in similar trouble?
<br />
<br />Don?t get me wrong. I like and respect Bob Novak and don?t want to ever see him in an orange jump suit. Or think about him being strip-searched upon intake to federal prison. Then again, I never even met Judith Miller, and I don?t want that happening to her, either.
<br />
<br />I called Novak in Washington to see if he could help me make sense of all this. ?I can?t say anything,? he said, citing advice of counsel and the pending federal investigation.
<br />
<br />This is a confusing story that centers on two critical and, in this case, competing values: the rule of law vs. the need of reporters to protect their sources. This is, in my opinion, also a story of an over-zealous federal prosecutor and a mostly timid press corps.
<br />
<br />It was two years ago this month that former Ambassador Joseph Wilson tore into the Bush administration for going to war with Iraq, in part, on claims that Saddam Hussein was in hot pursuit of yellow cake uranium from Africa. Wilson said the administration?s claim was bogus because he was the guy the CIA sent to find out.
<br />
<br />It was Novak who then wrote a column citing ?two senior administration officials? who cast doubt on Wilson?s mission. They told Novak it was Wilson?s wife, a CIA operative named Valerie Plame, who sent him to Africa. The implication was that it was a meaningless junket.
<br />
<br />Who were those ?two senior administration officials? and what business did they have outing a supposedly ?covert? CIA operative?
<br />
<br />Enter Chicago?s own U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, who was appointed special prosecutor to find out. With a federal grand jury at his disposal, Fitzgerald began questioning not only administration officials but members of the press.
<br />
<br />Now, two years later, the investigation is heading to a close. And for some reason that most of us have trouble understanding, two reporters other than Novak are risking jail. Though Matthew Cooper of Time magazine wrote about Plame after Novak did and Judith Miller of the New York Times never wrote about her at all, they refused to identify sources with whom they discussed the matter, and so a federal judge has ordered them to jail.
<br />
<br />As I write this, Time magazine has caved and, against Cooper?s wishes, handed over his notes. Miller is now the lone holdout.
<br />
<br />What no one understands, myself included, is Novak?s silence. Can he confirm he got a subpoena? ?I can?t do that,? he told me. Can he explain the distinction between himself and these two reporters? ?I can?t get into that,? he said.
<br />
<br />For 41 years, Novak built his career and reputation by asking the toughest of questions. Now, the tables turned, he refuses to answer them. Isn?t that, I asked, grounds for criticism?
<br />
<br />?No,? Novak told me, ?because this is a criminal investigation.?
<br />
<br />By any standard, it is a curious criminal investigation. Even the authors of the 1982 federal law that made it illegal to disclose the identity of a ?covert? CIA operative have gone on record saying in this particular case the law does not appear to have been broken. Why? Because, according to federal legal experts Victoria Toensing and Bruce Sanford, Valerie Plame wasn?t working covertly, and the CIA, when contacted by Novak in advance of his story, never offered any objection to him publishing her name.
<br />
<br />OK, if that?s true, what?s the law that?s been broken?
<br />
<br />It boils down to this. Fitzgerald, in his zeal, has made reporters the criminals here and taken them to federal court to force them to disclose their sources. Though there are reporter shield laws in most states, there is no similar protection federally. By that standard, Cooper and Miller, ordered in court to give up their sources, break the law by not disclosing. With Time magazine buckling, Cooper may not go to jail, but it looks like Miller will.
<br />
<br />Has there been a hue and cry about all of this from the media? Not enough. Not even we at the Sun-Times, in my view, have done enough to trumpet what I think should be our profound outrage at what?s going on. Novak is certainly entitled to protect his legal rights as he sees fit, but this is an issue that affects every working journalist.
<br />
<br />But I fear it?s too late. The damage has been done, or as the Bush administration likes to say, ?Mission Accomplished.? Our profession, which relies on anonymous sources for everything from Watergate to Hired Truck investigations, looks lame and weak and fearful. And any budding Deep Throats, these days, have far less reason to risk a trip to the parking garage.
<br />
<br />
</div><p><div class="blogdisclaim"><a href="http://codewarriorz.blogspot.com/2005/07/journal-gazette-07062005-why-isnt.html">This post originally appeared on an external website</a></div>

Collapse -

Penn Jillette?s daughter born with a superhero handle - Blogging Baby - www.bloggingbaby.com _

by codewarrior.wins In reply to CodeWarriorz Thoughts

<a href="http://www.bloggingbaby.com/entry/1234000327045625/">Penn Jillette?s daughter born with a superhero handle - Blogging Baby - www.bloggingbaby.com _</a> Penn Jillette, of Penn & Teller fame, has named his new baby daughter this. Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. That?s not a typo. Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. She was born on Friday, and Penn and his wife Emily are, umm, proud of their little superhero-to-be.
<br />========================SNIP==============
<br />What a stupid motherfucking asshole of a dad this poor girl has..he named her Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette...you ******* ASSHOLE Jillette....**** YOU!<p><div class="blogdisclaim"><a href="http://codewarriorz.blogspot.com/2005/07/penn-jillettes-daughter-born-with.html">This post originally appeared on an external website</a></div>

Collapse -

Journal Gazette | 07/06/2005 | Why isn?t Novak facing jail like other reporters?

by codewarrior.wins In reply to CodeWarriorz Thoughts

<div xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml">Why isn?t Novak facing jail like other reporters?
<br />
<br />By Carol Marin
<br />
<br />
<br />CHICAGO ? I just can?t figure it out. Why in the world is New York Times reporter Judith Miller headed to jail next week while my Sun-Times colleague Robert Novak is not? Why is a reporter who has written not one single word about a CIA operative about to be sent to the federal slammer while another reporter, the one who actually broke the story, isn?t in similar trouble?
<br />
<br />Don?t get me wrong. I like and respect Bob Novak and don?t want to ever see him in an orange jump suit. Or think about him being strip-searched upon intake to federal prison. Then again, I never even met Judith Miller, and I don?t want that happening to her, either.
<br />
<br />I called Novak in Washington to see if he could help me make sense of all this. ?I can?t say anything,? he said, citing advice of counsel and the pending federal investigation.
<br />
<br />This is a confusing story that centers on two critical and, in this case, competing values: the rule of law vs. the need of reporters to protect their sources. This is, in my opinion, also a story of an over-zealous federal prosecutor and a mostly timid press corps.
<br />
<br />It was two years ago this month that former Ambassador Joseph Wilson tore into the Bush administration for going to war with Iraq, in part, on claims that Saddam Hussein was in hot pursuit of yellow cake uranium from Africa. Wilson said the administration?s claim was bogus because he was the guy the CIA sent to find out.
<br />
<br />It was Novak who then wrote a column citing ?two senior administration officials? who cast doubt on Wilson?s mission. They told Novak it was Wilson?s wife, a CIA operative named Valerie Plame, who sent him to Africa. The implication was that it was a meaningless junket.
<br />
<br />Who were those ?two senior administration officials? and what business did they have outing a supposedly ?covert? CIA operative?
<br />
<br />Enter Chicago?s own U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, who was appointed special prosecutor to find out. With a federal grand jury at his disposal, Fitzgerald began questioning not only administration officials but members of the press.
<br />
<br />Now, two years later, the investigation is heading to a close. And for some reason that most of us have trouble understanding, two reporters other than Novak are risking jail. Though Matthew Cooper of Time magazine wrote about Plame after Novak did and Judith Miller of the New York Times never wrote about her at all, they refused to identify sources with whom they discussed the matter, and so a federal judge has ordered them to jail.
<br />
<br />As I write this, Time magazine has caved and, against Cooper?s wishes, handed over his notes. Miller is now the lone holdout.
<br />
<br />What no one understands, myself included, is Novak?s silence. Can he confirm he got a subpoena? ?I can?t do that,? he told me. Can he explain the distinction between himself and these two reporters? ?I can?t get into that,? he said.
<br />
<br />For 41 years, Novak built his career and reputation by asking the toughest of questions. Now, the tables turned, he refuses to answer them. Isn?t that, I asked, grounds for criticism?
<br />
<br />?No,? Novak told me, ?because this is a criminal investigation.?
<br />
<br />By any standard, it is a curious criminal investigation. Even the authors of the 1982 federal law that made it illegal to disclose the identity of a ?covert? CIA operative have gone on record saying in this particular case the law does not appear to have been broken. Why? Because, according to federal legal experts Victoria Toensing and Bruce Sanford, Valerie Plame wasn?t working covertly, and the CIA, when contacted by Novak in advance of his story, never offered any objection to him publishing her name.
<br />
<br />OK, if that?s true, what?s the law that?s been broken?
<br />
<br />It boils down to this. Fitzgerald, in his zeal, has made reporters the criminals here and taken them to federal court to force them to disclose their sources. Though there are reporter shield laws in most states, there is no similar protection federally. By that standard, Cooper and Miller, ordered in court to give up their sources, break the law by not disclosing. With Time magazine buckling, Cooper may not go to jail, but it looks like Miller will.
<br />
<br />Has there been a hue and cry about all of this from the media? Not enough. Not even we at the Sun-Times, in my view, have done enough to trumpet what I think should be our profound outrage at what?s going on. Novak is certainly entitled to protect his legal rights as he sees fit, but this is an issue that affects every working journalist.
<br />
<br />But I fear it?s too late. The damage has been done, or as the Bush administration likes to say, ?Mission Accomplished.? Our profession, which relies on anonymous sources for everything from Watergate to Hired Truck investigations, looks lame and weak and fearful. And any budding Deep Throats, these days, have far less reason to risk a trip to the parking garage.
<br />
<br />
</div><p><div class="blogdisclaim"><a href="http://codewarriorz.blogspot.com/2005/07/journal-gazette-07062005-why-isnt.html">This post originally appeared on an external website</a></div>

Collapse -

Penn Jillette?s daughter born with a superhero handle - Blogging Baby - www.bloggingbaby.com _

by codewarrior.wins In reply to CodeWarriorz Thoughts

<a href="http://www.bloggingbaby.com/entry/1234000327045625/">Penn Jillette?s daughter born with a superhero handle - Blogging Baby - www.bloggingbaby.com _</a> Penn Jillette, of Penn & Teller fame, has named his new baby daughter this. Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. That?s not a typo. Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. She was born on Friday, and Penn and his wife Emily are, umm, proud of their little superhero-to-be.
<br />========================SNIP==============
<br />What a stupid motherfucking asshole of a dad this poor girl has..he named her Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette...you ******* ASSHOLE Jillette....**** YOU!<p><div class="blogdisclaim"><a href="http://codewarriorz.blogspot.com/2005/07/penn-jillettes-daughter-born-with.html">This post originally appeared on an external website</a></div>

Collapse -

Journal Gazette | 07/06/2005 | Why isn?t Novak facing jail like other reporters?

by codewarrior.wins In reply to CodeWarriorz Thoughts

<div xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml">Why isn?t Novak facing jail like other reporters?
<br />
<br />By Carol Marin
<br />
<br />
<br />CHICAGO ? I just can?t figure it out. Why in the world is New York Times reporter Judith Miller headed to jail next week while my Sun-Times colleague Robert Novak is not? Why is a reporter who has written not one single word about a CIA operative about to be sent to the federal slammer while another reporter, the one who actually broke the story, isn?t in similar trouble?
<br />
<br />Don?t get me wrong. I like and respect Bob Novak and don?t want to ever see him in an orange jump suit. Or think about him being strip-searched upon intake to federal prison. Then again, I never even met Judith Miller, and I don?t want that happening to her, either.
<br />
<br />I called Novak in Washington to see if he could help me make sense of all this. ?I can?t say anything,? he said, citing advice of counsel and the pending federal investigation.
<br />
<br />This is a confusing story that centers on two critical and, in this case, competing values: the rule of law vs. the need of reporters to protect their sources. This is, in my opinion, also a story of an over-zealous federal prosecutor and a mostly timid press corps.
<br />
<br />It was two years ago this month that former Ambassador Joseph Wilson tore into the Bush administration for going to war with Iraq, in part, on claims that Saddam Hussein was in hot pursuit of yellow cake uranium from Africa. Wilson said the administration?s claim was bogus because he was the guy the CIA sent to find out.
<br />
<br />It was Novak who then wrote a column citing ?two senior administration officials? who cast doubt on Wilson?s mission. They told Novak it was Wilson?s wife, a CIA operative named Valerie Plame, who sent him to Africa. The implication was that it was a meaningless junket.
<br />
<br />Who were those ?two senior administration officials? and what business did they have outing a supposedly ?covert? CIA operative?
<br />
<br />Enter Chicago?s own U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, who was appointed special prosecutor to find out. With a federal grand jury at his disposal, Fitzgerald began questioning not only administration officials but members of the press.
<br />
<br />Now, two years later, the investigation is heading to a close. And for some reason that most of us have trouble understanding, two reporters other than Novak are risking jail. Though Matthew Cooper of Time magazine wrote about Plame after Novak did and Judith Miller of the New York Times never wrote about her at all, they refused to identify sources with whom they discussed the matter, and so a federal judge has ordered them to jail.
<br />
<br />As I write this, Time magazine has caved and, against Cooper?s wishes, handed over his notes. Miller is now the lone holdout.
<br />
<br />What no one understands, myself included, is Novak?s silence. Can he confirm he got a subpoena? ?I can?t do that,? he told me. Can he explain the distinction between himself and these two reporters? ?I can?t get into that,? he said.
<br />
<br />For 41 years, Novak built his career and reputation by asking the toughest of questions. Now, the tables turned, he refuses to answer them. Isn?t that, I asked, grounds for criticism?
<br />
<br />?No,? Novak told me, ?because this is a criminal investigation.?
<br />
<br />By any standard, it is a curious criminal investigation. Even the authors of the 1982 federal law that made it illegal to disclose the identity of a ?covert? CIA operative have gone on record saying in this particular case the law does not appear to have been broken. Why? Because, according to federal legal experts Victoria Toensing and Bruce Sanford, Valerie Plame wasn?t working covertly, and the CIA, when contacted by Novak in advance of his story, never offered any objection to him publishing her name.
<br />
<br />OK, if that?s true, what?s the law that?s been broken?
<br />
<br />It boils down to this. Fitzgerald, in his zeal, has made reporters the criminals here and taken them to federal court to force them to disclose their sources. Though there are reporter shield laws in most states, there is no similar protection federally. By that standard, Cooper and Miller, ordered in court to give up their sources, break the law by not disclosing. With Time magazine buckling, Cooper may not go to jail, but it looks like Miller will.
<br />
<br />Has there been a hue and cry about all of this from the media? Not enough. Not even we at the Sun-Times, in my view, have done enough to trumpet what I think should be our profound outrage at what?s going on. Novak is certainly entitled to protect his legal rights as he sees fit, but this is an issue that affects every working journalist.
<br />
<br />But I fear it?s too late. The damage has been done, or as the Bush administration likes to say, ?Mission Accomplished.? Our profession, which relies on anonymous sources for everything from Watergate to Hired Truck investigations, looks lame and weak and fearful. And any budding Deep Throats, these days, have far less reason to risk a trip to the parking garage.
<br />
<br />
</div><p><div class="blogdisclaim"><a href="http://codewarriorz.blogspot.com/2005/07/journal-gazette-07062005-why-isnt.html">This post originally appeared on an external website</a></div>

Collapse -

Penn Jillette?s daughter born with a superhero handle - Blogging Baby - www.bloggingbaby.com _

by codewarrior.wins In reply to CodeWarriorz Thoughts

<a href="http://www.bloggingbaby.com/entry/1234000327045625/">Penn Jillette?s daughter born with a superhero handle - Blogging Baby - www.bloggingbaby.com _</a> Penn Jillette, of Penn & Teller fame, has named his new baby daughter this. Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. That?s not a typo. Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette. She was born on Friday, and Penn and his wife Emily are, umm, proud of their little superhero-to-be.
<br />========================SNIP==============
<br />What a stupid motherfucking asshole of a dad this poor girl has..he named her Moxie CrimeFighter Jillette...you ******* ASSHOLE Jillette....**** YOU!<p><div class="blogdisclaim"><a href="http://codewarriorz.blogspot.com/2005/07/penn-jillettes-daughter-born-with.html">This post originally appeared on an external website</a></div>

Collapse -

Journal Gazette | 07/06/2005 | Why isn?t Novak facing jail like other reporters?

by codewarrior.wins In reply to CodeWarriorz Thoughts

<div xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml">Why isn?t Novak facing jail like other reporters?
<br />
<br />By Carol Marin
<br />
<br />
<br />CHICAGO ? I just can?t figure it out. Why in the world is New York Times reporter Judith Miller headed to jail next week while my Sun-Times colleague Robert Novak is not? Why is a reporter who has written not one single word about a CIA operative about to be sent to the federal slammer while another reporter, the one who actually broke the story, isn?t in similar trouble?
<br />
<br />Don?t get me wrong. I like and respect Bob Novak and don?t want to ever see him in an orange jump suit. Or think about him being strip-searched upon intake to federal prison. Then again, I never even met Judith Miller, and I don?t want that happening to her, either.
<br />
<br />I called Novak in Washington to see if he could help me make sense of all this. ?I can?t say anything,? he said, citing advice of counsel and the pending federal investigation.
<br />
<br />This is a confusing story that centers on two critical and, in this case, competing values: the rule of law vs. the need of reporters to protect their sources. This is, in my opinion, also a story of an over-zealous federal prosecutor and a mostly timid press corps.
<br />
<br />It was two years ago this month that former Ambassador Joseph Wilson tore into the Bush administration for going to war with Iraq, in part, on claims that Saddam Hussein was in hot pursuit of yellow cake uranium from Africa. Wilson said the administration?s claim was bogus because he was the guy the CIA sent to find out.
<br />
<br />It was Novak who then wrote a column citing ?two senior administration officials? who cast doubt on Wilson?s mission. They told Novak it was Wilson?s wife, a CIA operative named Valerie Plame, who sent him to Africa. The implication was that it was a meaningless junket.
<br />
<br />Who were those ?two senior administration officials? and what business did they have outing a supposedly ?covert? CIA operative?
<br />
<br />Enter Chicago?s own U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, who was appointed special prosecutor to find out. With a federal grand jury at his disposal, Fitzgerald began questioning not only administration officials but members of the press.
<br />
<br />Now, two years later, the investigation is heading to a close. And for some reason that most of us have trouble understanding, two reporters other than Novak are risking jail. Though Matthew Cooper of Time magazine wrote about Plame after Novak did and Judith Miller of the New York Times never wrote about her at all, they refused to identify sources with whom they discussed the matter, and so a federal judge has ordered them to jail.
<br />
<br />As I write this, Time magazine has caved and, against Cooper?s wishes, handed over his notes. Miller is now the lone holdout.
<br />
<br />What no one understands, myself included, is Novak?s silence. Can he confirm he got a subpoena? ?I can?t do that,? he told me. Can he explain the distinction between himself and these two reporters? ?I can?t get into that,? he said.
<br />
<br />For 41 years, Novak built his career and reputation by asking the toughest of questions. Now, the tables turned, he refuses to answer them. Isn?t that, I asked, grounds for criticism?
<br />
<br />?No,? Novak told me, ?because this is a criminal investigation.?
<br />
<br />By any standard, it is a curious criminal investigation. Even the authors of the 1982 federal law that made it illegal to disclose the identity of a ?covert? CIA operative have gone on record saying in this particular case the law does not appear to have been broken. Why? Because, according to federal legal experts Victoria Toensing and Bruce Sanford, Valerie Plame wasn?t working covertly, and the CIA, when contacted by Novak in advance of his story, never offered any objection to him publishing her name.
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<br />OK, if that?s true, what?s the law that?s been broken?
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<br />It boils down to this. Fitzgerald, in his zeal, has made reporters the criminals here and taken them to federal court to force them to disclose their sources. Though there are reporter shield laws in most states, there is no similar protection federally. By that standard, Cooper and Miller, ordered in court to give up their sources, break the law by not disclosing. With Time magazine buckling, Cooper may not go to jail, but it looks like Miller will.
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<br />Has there been a hue and cry about all of this from the media? Not enough. Not even we at the Sun-Times, in my view, have done enough to trumpet what I think should be our profound outrage at what?s going on. Novak is certainly entitled to protect his legal rights as he sees fit, but this is an issue that affects every working journalist.
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<br />But I fear it?s too late. The damage has been done, or as the Bush administration likes to say, ?Mission Accomplished.? Our profession, which relies on anonymous sources for everything from Watergate to Hired Truck investigations, looks lame and weak and fearful. And any budding Deep Throats, these days, have far less reason to risk a trip to the parking garage.
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</div><p><div class="blogdisclaim"><a href="http://codewarriorz.blogspot.com/2005/07/journal-gazette-07062005-why-isnt.html">This post originally appeared on an external website</a></div>

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