Wednesday, January 14, 2004

O'Neill learns Cheney is the mole -- a great story of the Bush White House

Paul O'Neill, Unplugged, or What Would Alexander Hamilton Have Done? NYT OpEd
... Mr. O'Neill's is a woeful tale of what it feels like to sit in the office once occupied by Alexander Hamilton and be subservient to people like Karl Rove and Karen Hughes.

'We need to be better about keeping politics out of the policy process,' Mr. O'Neill told Dick Cheney, his old friend from the Ford administration who had recommended him for the job early on. In this tale, the Treasury secretary repeatedly implores the vice president to foster a more open and rigorous policy-making process in the White House, but to no avail. These scenes are reminiscent of a spy thriller in which the protagonist warns the head of counterintelligence that there is an enemy mole in their midst, only to discover that his confidant is actually the mole.

Long after the reader has figured it out, Mr. O'Neill finally realizes that Mr. Cheney is the leader of the inner circle ....

O'Neill appears to have been genuinely shocked by how things turned out. How could he have been so naive? He should have known better. If we knew how he fooled himself we might understand how to awaken the other fools.

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