Friday, March 16, 2007

"Mistakes were made."

Commenting on the Alberto Gonzales scandal, President Bush said, "He's right, mistakes were made. And I'm frankly not happy about it."

"Mainly, because they're my mistakes."

"Mistakes were made." Ah. That old chestnut.

And then there's this retraction of the latest misinformation campaign:

The White House on Friday backed off its earlier contention that then-White House Counsel Harriet Miers first raised the idea of firing U.S. attorneys — an act that led to a firestorm of criticism of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

"It has been described as her idea but ... I don't want to try to vouch for origination," said White House press secretary Tony Snow, who previously had asserted Miers was the person who came up with the idea. "At this juncture, people have hazy memories."

Snow's comments came as e-mails surfaced Thursday night pulling the White House further into the intensifying probe over the firings of eight federal prosecutors. The e-mails raised new questions about top political adviser Karl Rove's role in the dismissals, and came amid eroding GOP support for Gonzales that put his job at risk.

Snow said it was not immediately clear who first floated the more dramatic idea of firing all 93 U.S. attorneys shortly after President Bush was re-elected to a second term.

"This is as far as we can go: we know that Karl recollects Harriet having raised it and his recollection is that he dismissed it as not a good idea," Snow told reporters. "That's what we know. We don't know motivations. ... I don't think it's safe to go any further than that."

Asked if Bush himself might have suggested the firings, Snow said, "Anything's possible ... but I don't think so." He said Bush "certainly has no recollection of any such thing. I can't speak for the attorney general.

"I want you to be clear here: don't be dropping it at the president's door," Snow said.

Yeah. Don't be dropping that shit off at the president's door. Didn't you hear? The motto is the third-person passive "Mistakes Were Made," not the first-person active "The Buck Stops Here."

Tim McIntire sums it up best:
It's gotta be passive voice, man.

"Stopping by the buck was done at certain locations."