Patterico's Pontifications


Thanks for nothing, Victoria Toensing

Filed under: General — Karl @ 5:16 pm

[Posted by Karl]

Victoria Toensing, former chief counsel for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, former deputy assistant attorney general, criminal division, and cable news fixture, seems outrageously outraged about Attorney General Eric Holder’s decision to to investigate possible abuses by CIA interrogators in using harsh tactics on terror detainees:

“All volunteers step forward. We have a person in custody who is high-ranking al-Qaeda. He taunts that an attack on United States soil is imminent but laughs mockingly when we ask for specifics. We need interrogators.” Such was the threat in the summer of 2002 when the CIA asked the Justice Department for guidance on what its personnel could do to get such information from captured al-Qaeda lieutenant Abu Zubdayah.

Since then, the lawyers who stepped forward to provide carefully structured counsel have been criminally investigated and told that, even if they are not prosecuted, their conduct will be turned over to their state bars. The interrogators who stepped forward were promised in early spring by President Obama that, even if they erred in judgment while protecting our country, the president would rather “move forward.” However, in late summer, they are under criminal scrutiny.

Even though an earlier investigation by career prosecutors reviewed the same conduct and refused prosecution of all but one contract employee who was brought to trial in 2007. Even though congressional leaders had knowledge of the interrogation techniques and made no attempt to stop them. Even though the conduct is more than six years old. Even though the CIA has taken administrative action against some of the personnel involved in the interrogations. Even though being just a target of a criminal investigation costs thousands of dollars in legal fees. Even though being just a target of a criminal investigation takes a horrendous mental toll. Even though the morale of the CIA will plunge to the depths it did in the wake of the Church Committee attacks. Even though the release of the names of those being scrutinized will make them terrorist targets for the rest of their lives. Even if they are cleared.

The next time our government employees are asked to step forward to get information of a possible, even probable, imminent attack, no one will. Even though…

Of course, what is missing from Toensing’s venting is any mention of Attorney General Eric Holder. The reason for the glaring omission might just be that, as Byron York reported at the time, Toensing backed Holder:

I just got off the phone with Joe DiGenova, the former U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia who, along with his wife and fellow lawyer Victoria Toensing, signed a letter in support of Eric Holder’s nomination to be attorney general. DiGenova told me he and Toensing were approached by Republican lawyer Mike Madigan about signing the letter, but they were in favor of Holder’s nomination much earlier than that. “Victoria and I signed the letter, but we were supporting him before that,” DiGenova told me. “Our support comes from the fact that we have known Eric for many years, that we respect him as a lawyer, and, more importantly, we are very concerned about the Justice Department. There have been too many AG’s who don’t understand the place. Eric is very qualified to fix it, because it is a mess. It isn’t just the politicization of it, it’s the career people who need supervision…We know Eric personally, and we believe him to be a superbly qualified candidate to fix the place.” DiGenova added that he and Toensing also went to Capitol Hill to speak in support of Holder with Judiciary Committee chairman Sen. Pat Leahy (this also happened well before the letter was sent).

Toensing does not even have the wafer-thin fig leaf of “private assurances” from Holder that the most clueless GOP Senators are modeling today. If Toensing wants to vent at someone, she could start with a mirror, then move on to her husband and the rest of the chummy “go along to get along” Beltway Republicans.


38 Responses to “Thanks for nothing, Victoria Toensing”

  1. She sounds so bitter. I think it’s good that prospective CIA flunkies are being served notice up front that it’s a crappy, low-rent, trashy and really sort of gay place to work. Mostly a bunch of dirty socialist wide stancey homos is how they looked during when President Bush had expectations they would act like for real Americans. That was silly of Bush cause these are petty feeble poofters what prance around at the beck and call of Leon Panetta’s fat poncey ass. CIA monkeys have no self respect I don’t think and no particular reason to have any.

    happyfeet (6b707a)

  2. I remember once when I was little I asked mom why my Uncle T wasn’t married and she said he was “in the CIA.” I didn’t figure out what that meant until I was in college.

    happyfeet (6b707a)

  3. feets!

    To be fair, I think there are any number of good people in the field, and any number of ponces in the bureaucracy. Toensing is posing as a friend to the former, even as she enabled the latter.

    Karl (ade276)

  4. I *think* there are any number of good people in the field

    I hear this a lot but these good mens were very very quiet while Mr. Bush was working so hard to bring freedoms to poor oppressed peoples and the previously good name of the agency was squandered cheaper and faster than a Larry Craig handjob. Remember that lying whorebag Valerie and her poncey homosocialist husband and what they done to Mr. Libby? That’s just the tip of the iceberg of how trashy and low-rent these CIA ones are.

    I’m sorry to say so but the only outfit was has displayed as shabby or shabbier morals and character that’s still allowed to operate is Abercrombie & Fitch, which from what I understand is where the CIA does most of its recruiting.

    happyfeet (6b707a)

  5. Give her credit for being right now, at least. That is better than Meghan, the lobsterpot-hoochies, Lyndsey G, and the rest of their ilk.

    Did Holder go rogue on Barcky?

    JD (1f5216)

  6. Karl, I don’t know if she was “enabling” the ponces in the CIA bureaucracy so much as she was trying to kiss Holder’s ass to keep access in the DOJ.

    And now she’s seen something happen that she has to condemn to keep credibility but still wants to keep her lips on his backside. Hence the doubletalk.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  7. By the way, Karl, did you see what is written just below her on the NRO Corner? Hehe.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  8. Say this much for liberal Democrats, they don’t play the inside-the-beltway-scratch-the-back game. If they think a John Ashcroft or John Roberts or Sam Alito will act as a true conservative, they are forthright in opposing them. Republicans pull this “I know his/her record is that of a staunch leftist but I am sure that he/she will act in a nonpartisan fashion once they are confirmed” garbage then act completely surprised when a Steven Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, or Eric Holder ends up to be exactly what non-Washington conservatives warned them of.

    JVW (d1215a)

  9. That’s the way I see it, the Drumheller, the Sulicks, of the world, who against their better judgement, teamed against Bush. I have no time for. Some like Grenier, who turned against Libby
    will probably get their comeuppance.

    narciso (4e0dda)

  10. So the right wants an attorney general who will look the other way when it suits their politics?

    Sunburn (5d93e3)

  11. Sunburn, is there a reason you are pretending to lack english reading comprehension skills?

    SPQR (26be8b)

  12. I agree about Victoria though. It matters much more that our AG is a craven fascist Soros-fellating eunuch than it matters whether or not morale is high at the CIA. We can always buy more gay porn and sex toys for the spy boys but once we criminalize public service and the giving of legal advice then our little country is a lot doomed. Which, it is, you know. So much squandered so very quickly, and Barack Obama is just getting started.

    And Victoria is worried about morale at the CIA. She’s a bit of a dinky hoo I think.

    happyfeet (6b707a)

  13. So the right wants an attorney general who will look the other way when it suits their politics?
    Comment by Sunburn — 8/25/2009 @ 6:10 pm

    No, the right wants an Attorney General that doesn’t consider politics when looking.

    Stashiu3 (ed6467)

  14. This is an interesting aspect that I hadn’t known about. The machinations in Washington defeat the simple provincials like me. For example, Scooter LIbby represented Marc Rich in his quest for a pardon. That certainly did Libby a lot of good.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  15. It’s actually worse than that,Mike, Libby actually
    represented Richard Armitage, the man who also leaked Valerie Plame’s name to Novak & Cooper. Ken Starr, supported Dan Moldea in a pre publication matter, and the latter later went to work for Larry Flynt attacking his investigation

    narciso (4e0dda)

  16. No, the right wants an Attorney General that doesn’t consider politics when looking.

    But the evidence presented suggests that crimes were committed during the interrogation of suspects.

    The rule of law is now “politics?”

    Sunburn (5d93e3)

  17. Sunshine is like the bastard offspring of alphie and imdw.

    JD (46cf2b)

  18. Sunburn,

    You’re talking about the evidence that has already been reviewed and acted upon where deemed appropriate. This is not about the rule of law at all, it’s politics through and through.

    You’re dismissible.

    Stashiu3 (ed6467)

  19. JD,

    At least alphie and imdw brought up uncomfortable truths on occasion… Sunburn doesn’t even bring that much. Just tired talking points that have been proven lies over and over. I’m done with her and suggest everyone ignore her.

    Stashiu3 (ed6467)

  20. Sunburn, you are making some rather brazen misstatements of fact. You want to pretend like some new evidence showed up. But that’s a false implication that you’ve invented. The IG report is five years old. DOJ reviewed the evidence years ago, and decided to prosecute one person already.

    Your attempt to imply that the Bush admin did not operate under the rule of law is a rather obvious falsehood. It acted very carefully within the rule of law. As I pointed out to you in another thread, where you ignored it, a difference of opinion in the interpretation of law is not lawlessness.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  21. It’s the rule of law just it’s the rule of law of the Open Society Institute’s de-nazification program not the rule of the laws of our own little country what used to have honor, what used to recognize honor in her people, what used to be a beacon of honor to those what weren’t her people.

    We are cheapened and made shabby and paltry by this George Soros and his Barack Obama.

    I don’t care what those ones are doing that’s not how we live me mum used to say, and that was a pretty good policy, if a bit arbitrary. But these dirty socialist ones are bent on besmirching all of us not just thems who are willing participants in their dirty socialist schemes. And by making a vengeful joke of the rule of law they rid the rule of their Dirty Socialist State of its greatest rival.

    He really sucks, our president.

    happyfeet (6b707a)

  22. Stashiu3,

    The idea that a Bush administration investigation of a Bush administration program was free of politics is laughable.

    This type of thing is exactly why we have an adversarial political system.

    Besides, if these guys did nothing wrong they have nothing to worry about, right?

    Sunburn (5d93e3)

  23. This type of thing is exactly why we have an adversarial political system.

    If what you mean by adversarial system is Eric Holder’s punk bitch ass vs. sundry randomly-chosen enemies of the Soros/Obama dirty socialist State.

    happyfeet (6b707a)

  24. Sunburn, the IG report in question was given to Congressional oversight committees a half decade ago.

    You evidently have no clue what you are talking about.

    What is laughable is that Obama / Holder’s actions are free from politics.

    Do you have any knowledge of logic at all?

    SPQR (26be8b)

  25. Well … the important thing I think is that people are afraid and in the future people will be afraid. Afraid to defend our little country and afraid to do anything in support of America or capitalism or freedom or anything at all what the dirty socialists are known to oppose. This is the Hope and Change what we were waiting for and our little country is positively constipated with it.

    happyfeet (6b707a)

  26. I haven’t heard of the Toensing/DiGenova apostasy beyond here, but if it’s as described, shame on them. There does seem to be some truth to the old-wives tale about hanging around inside the beltway too long.

    “The first thing we Beltway Lawyers should do, is let’s beat each other with wet noodles on the Sunday talk shows. Then let’s go home and fool around.”

    In the olden days, it was called a Punch and Judy Show.

    driver (29b6de)

  27. “Since then, the lawyers who stepped forward to provide carefully structured counsel have been criminally investigated and told that, even if they are not prosecuted, their conduct will be turned over to their state bars.”

    Their counsel wasn’t that carefully structured.

    imdw (1b1354)

  28. What the dirty socialists are doing to Bush officials is of a piece with what they’re doing to cable news personality Glenn Beck, really. And what they tried to do to that stupid white cop in Cambridge. And what they’re doing to poor little Honduras. Making examples. It’s what they do, these ones.

    happyfeet (6b707a)

  29. oh. I forgot also the hapless Whole Foods executive douchebag what is guilty of Pro-Capitalist Thinkings.

    happyfeet (6b707a)

  30. Actually, imdw, it was.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  31. SPQR,

    You’ll note that I used the past tense when talking about alphie AND imdw bringing up uncomfortable truths on occasion. That’s because both are pretty far in the past, alphie because he’s banned, imdw because he prefers dishonest snark to honest discussion.

    Engage Sunburn or imdw if you’re bored and want to slap them around a bit. I hate being that bored and usually grab a book instead.

    Stashiu3 (ed6467)

  32. Stashiu3, oh, I have a book too. Absolution Gap by Alastair Reynolds – part of his “Revelation Space” series.

    Great stuff.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  33. I’ll check it out. I’m re-reading Digital Fortress by Dan Brown. Always on the lookout for a good series. Thanks.

    Stashiu3 (ed6467)

  34. Stashiu3, start with “Revelation Space” or “Chasm City”.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  35. “Actually, imdw, it was.”

    That’s why the office of professional responsibility looked into it, huh? Let’s see the report.

    imdw (06d366)

  36. I choose not to impose this sort of “purity test” on other conservatives. It’s just not productive, whether they’re Beltway insiders or not.

    Beldar (b62755)

  37. I nominate John McCain for the first annual “Victoria Toensing Award”, which shall be given in recognition of a person’s silly, waffling efforts to “go along by getting along” with the worst efforts of those who want to destroy our country. Senator McCain wins for assuring a Town Hall meeting yesterday (to a choris of well deserved boos) that the president “respects the Constitution”, when it is plain he doesn’t give a fig leaf for it, just as Senator Dingdong once upon a time stupidly assured a previous Town Hall that candidate Obama did not present a threat to our country.

    MTF (17058c)

  38. In re: comment 22,

    “The idea that a Bush administration investigation of a Bush administration program was free of politics is laughable.

    This type of thing is exactly why we have an adversarial political system.

    If ever in the future some lefty bozo, like Sunburn, cries out about the politicization of the Justice Department, feel free to remind them of this sentiment, as expressed so exactly in this instance. Lefties are unprepared to believe that the career Justice Department prosecutors did a full and complete job with the motivation being to be guardians of the law, precisely because it is the self-evident intention of lefties to corrupt any legal process with political pressure to achieve political ends, Exhibit “A” being this statement. What a dummy.

    MTF (17058c)

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