Wednesday, February 15, 2006

National: Confidential White House Memo On Cheney Shooting

Every so often, I receive email from the White House.

The White House does not intend to send me this email; these are obviously confidential communications that are somehow misdirected to my email address by their author. I suppose that what is happening is that the author has somehow acquired my email address and mistakenly included it on his own “in-house distribution list”—thus, I get these messages automatically whenever the author intends to send especially sensitive information and instructions to a very small and discrete circle of key Bush administration personnel.

The author of these emails does not sign his real name; he identifies himself by a nickname or codename as “The Ol’ Chimpmeister” or simply “Chimp-meister.” From what I can gather from the content of the messages, the author is probably male and a “Washington insider.” He seems to be a highly placed advisor or administrator working in the White House--one of “the President’s men;” a peer or colleague of Karl Rove and Andrew Card. (I don’t think that Rove or Card could be the author, since they are sometimes mentioned by name or directly addressed in these emails.)
It would appear that the “Chimpmeister” regularly counsels the President on media and public perception matters and oversees a significant staff of lower echelon White House personnel whose duties include “managing” the press and the broadcast media.

Please bear all this in mind when you read the following, the latest in this series of unsought memoranda:

From: Chimpmeister
To: Actiongroup.list;rove.private;card.private

First and foremost: now is not the time to panic. If I catch anybody panicking, I will personally crucify him or her, and if you don’t believe I’ll do it just ask ‘Scooter’ Libby, if the judge will let him talk to you.
Second: No one is to forward this to Dick C, and I MEAN IT. I left him off the distribution list intentionally. My advice to him was to keep mum, and the less Dick knows this week the better. I know it’s a standing order that Dick and his people have access to everything, but this week’s different, because this week it’s Dick’s ass in the sling. If I get a copy of this back from Dick’s office, I will hunt down whoever it was who sent it to him and then you’ll wish you were Harry Whittington, comprendo?
This is the situation, as of the time stamp: Whittington could go either way. The man’s 78 years old, for Christ’s sake, and he’s got two hundred pellets in him. (NOTE THAT WORD: it’s “PELLETS”, not “BULLETS”—Dick got him with a shotgun, not a rifle, and shotguns fire “PELLETS”, NOT “BULLETS”. So if I catch one of you little dumbshits telling a reporter that Dick put 200 “bullets” in Mr. Whittington, I will personally transfer your ass to the Baghdad office, and good f’ing riddance, too. I hope I make myself clear.)
Which one of you geniuses told those doctors in Texas to tell the press that the wounds were “superficial”? Whichever one of you it was, I want you in my office, this afternoon, so I can thank you personally by tearing you a new asshole that matches the one you were thinking with when you told the doctors to say THAT. That’s exactly what I mean when I say “DO NOT PANIC”; telling the doctors to say stupid shit like that so that two hours later we have to confess that some of the pellets are embedded in Whittington’s heart and he’s having a FUCKING HEART ATTACK! HOW DOES THAT MAKE US LOOK? ‘SUPERFICIAL’? ARE YOU TRYING TO GIVE ME AND DICK A HEART ATTACK?
And another thing—who told McClellan about the Accident? (By the way—until one of you birdbrains comes up with a better euphemism, that’s how everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, is going to refer to this—as “The Accident.” Anyone on my staff who refers to it in public (or in private) as “the shooting” had better start boning up on his Arabic, pronto, because you’re on that plane to Baghdad if you do. Here’s the good news: anyone who comes up with a better euphemism than “The Accident” gets to go home for the night and still have a job the next day. And don’t suggest calling it “The Tragedy”; it’s not “The Tragedy” until Whittington actually dies, you morons.)
Anyway, I repeat: who told that asshole McClellan? No one tells the White House Press Secretary ANYTHING until you’ve spoken to me or Dick or Karl first. This is basic training stuff, people! I didn’t even tell the Chimp about it until Saturday night, just before his bedtime when he was looking sleepy and wasn’t likely to tell anyone else. So which one of you geniuses took it upon himself to tell McClellan?
Whoever you are, I can’t wait to get my hands on you, you stupid little rat-bastard. Thanks to you, McClellan decides on an emergency PR strategy of his own, and goes up in front of the camera this morning trying to pull a “humorous” Ronald Reagan-like approach to the whole mess, making jokes about hunting and what a bad shot Dick is and how he’s wearing an orange tie at the press conference so Dick won’t shoot HIM—and then an hour later the hospital’s telling the world that this 78 year old man is in the middle of HAVING A FUCKING HEART ATTACK! What’s that you say? “Oops?” I’ll “oops” you, if I find out who you are, and I will, you can bet your ass I will!
NO ONE TELLS MCCLELLAN ANYTHING! I don’t care if he has to stand up in front of those reporters for a half an hour with his finger up his ass, YOU TELL HIM NOTHING unless I say so! We’re already getting criticism from Marlin Fitzwater and Ari fucking Fleischer, even!
Note the following and memorize it, learn it, live it—or DIE A LINGERING DEATH AT MY HANDS: it’s “pellets”, not “bullets”—the “pellets” have “migrated” to Harrington’s heart (immediately correct anyone who suggests that Dick SHOT him in the heart)—“MINOR heart attack”, not “heart attack”—in fact, use the phrase “myocardial infarction” or look up some specific bullshit medical term for it, stay away from “heart attack” altogether. NEVER refer to Harrington as “the victim”; he’s “an old friend” of the Vice President. Avoid expressions of “sympathy” for Harrington or his family, that sounds like the guy’s already dead. In fact, now that I think of it, NO ONE is authorized to offer “sympathy” to anyone, or anything like it, get me? It’s okay to LOOK sympathetic if they ask about it, but you give them no more than THREE SECONDS of the sympathetic “look” and then MOVE ON TO ANOTHER SUBJECT. And if anyone so much as mentions the word “apology,” you’ll be back licking campaign contribution junk mail envelopes in a heartbeat--in a Dick Cheney heartbeat, is that understood?
And for Christ’s sake, try to look confident! Not “happy”, you’re not “happy” that Dick shot the guy—look confident! There’s a DIFFERENCE, for Christ’s sake.


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