Thursday, January 5, 2006

Can't Tell the Players Without a Scorecard

As usual, Think Progress has the goods on the Abramoff debacle, with a complete roundup of members of Congress most likely to get tangled in this thing. Bookmark the page and refer back to it as this thing unravels, because this is going to be one hairy, roaring beast. Mr. Abramoff is now facing about 10 years in stir (maybe he'll be out on parole after 5 to 7), provided he cooperates fully. And, it must be added, provided he lives.

No, that's not a backhanded prediction (neither, of course, does it imply a wish). I'll only say that there's some heavy beef—some very big shooters—implicated here; and it may well go to the very top: to Uncle Dick and Crawford George themselves. These are people who thought nothing of murdering innocent Iraqi women and children in the most horrific ways, all for getting control of an oil supply (the latest story of this rap sheet of atrocity is here). These are folks who believe that planning to swat off an up-and-coming Venezuelan politician with socialist leanings is sound foreign policy. Do you think they'll pause at the chance to ice a guy whose testimony could bring them all down in a heap, right to the door of the federal pen? Well, if you do, then you can just dream on.

Me? If I was Jack, I'd be asking for a 24 hour guard and a safehouse. No visitors except immediate family, and a flak jacket to wear to every court appearance. Paranoid? Please, pilgrims: we're talking about tyrants whose blood runs colder than the waters of the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve, which they also seek to plunder for oily profits. Just go to this page and take a look at that fellow's face in the picture: now, would you feel cozy and secure if you were Jack Abramoff today?

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