It has only been a week since the Associated Press learned that its reporters' privacy and the confidentiality of their relationships with sources were violated on a massive and unprecedented scale by Eric Holder's Justice Department in April and May of last year. DOJ has admitted that it secretly obtained the call records for 20 personal and business lines used by over 100 AP reporters and editors. Despite its insistence that they were looking for the person who leaked information about a foiled terrorist plot, there is reason to believe the DOJ's fishing expedition was a childish response to the wire service's refusal to let the government crow about the foiled operation before anyone reported on it.
In the wake of all of this, the AP, appears determined to soldier on as the wire service more appropriately described as the Administration's Press. That's about the only way one can view the Saturday afternoon dispatch from the AP's David Espo and its accompanying headline:
OBAMA AGENDA MARCHES ON DESPITE CONTROVERSIES
Despite Democratic fears, predictions of the demise of President Barack Obama's agenda appear exaggerated after a week of cascading controversies, political triage by the administration and party leaders in Congress and lack of evidence to date of wrongdoing close to the Oval Office.
Translation: Nyah-nyah, nyah-nyah nyah.
As to the claim that there is no "evidence to date of wrongdoing close to the Oval Office," you can't get any closer than one step away. All five major "controversies," better known as "scandals," are only one step away:
- On Benghazi, then-State Department Secretary Hillary Clinton, then-Department of Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, and then-CIA Director David Petraeus all reported directly to the President. There is still a two-day gap in what the administration has disclosed about what happened before and after the death of Libyan ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans who tried to save him.
- On the AP phone-record snooping, DOJ's Eric Holder reports directly to Obama.
- The IRS's then-alleged, now-admitted harassment of Tea Party and conservative groups was reported to the Treasury Department Director's counsel and at least one Deputy Treasury Secretary, who was duty-bound to inform then-Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, who reports to Obama.
- HHS's ongoing efforts to shake down private insurance companies to fund efforts to promote the wonders of signing up for ObamaCare and its work incentive-killing subsidies are being led by Kathleen Sebelius, who reports to Obama.
- Finally, in the horrific gun-running Operation Fast and Furious, "documents obtained by CBS News show Attorney General Eric Holder was sent briefings ... as far back as July 2010." Holder, as noted, reports to Obama.
Espo's execrable exercise shows that the AP we have known and despised has at a minimum been unaffected by DOJ's arguably illegal dragnet. Either that, or it may, as a result of government intimidation, be in the early stages of becoming even worse.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.