As anyone who has written a book about American politics in recent years can confirm, many members of Washington’s celebrity press corps suffer from an irremediable attention deficit. Their memories are short, their concern for context and nuance is null, and their capacity for detail is nil. Their appetite for gossip and spectacle, however, remains Read More
Political Fictions , by Joan Didion. Alfred A. Knopf, 338 pages, $25.
In the foreword to Political Fictions , Joan Didion’s latest collection of essays, she recalls an Alice-down-the-rabbit-hole escapade searching for Jesse Jackson’s plane at the Newark Airport during the 1988 Presidential campaign. She queries agents who send her to other agents who know Read More
As Dan Rather demonstrated when he interviewed the President on 60 Minutes II, the Clinton legacy will always be bedeviled by the blue dress. The news media sacrificed their dignity over it, and Ken Starr his future. Every 10-year-old who ever steps into the Clinton library will torture the curators there over it, causing a Read More
Whatever he now feels about his former role as spokesman for the Office of Independent Counsel, Charles Bakaly III surely has fresh appreciation of what it means to undertake a “thankless task.” Having entered the O.I.C.’s service in 1998 to improve the dismal image of Kenneth W. Starr and his prosecutors, poor Mr. Bakaly now Read More
On June 22, the fax machine spit out a press release of slightly less than two pages from the Office of the Independent Counsel regarding the long-delayed conclusion of the investigation “commonly known as the Travel Office matter.” It was a statement from independent counsel Robert W. Ray, the successor to Kenneth W. Starr, informing Read More
In journalistic circles, much has been made of alleged errors in A Vast Conspiracy , Jeffrey Toobin’s excellent account of the Clinton impeachment follies. Certain people rejoiced after Newsweek ‘s Michael Isikoff recently demanded and won a few corrections in future editions of the Toobin book.
Next came Susan Schmidt of The Washington Post Read More
The other day Robert Ray-the prosecutor appointed to succeed former independent counsel Kenneth Starr in the six-year-old Whitewater-Foster suicide-Travel Office-F.B.I. files-Rose Law Firm files-Monica Lewinsky-Kathleen Willey investigation-announced that he may seek to indict Bill Clinton after the President leaves office next January. Evidently he is in no hurry to complete the legally required reports about Read More
If news reports are to be believed, we are now close to the conclusion of that long-running political hoax known as “Filegate.” According to a story in The New York Times on March 13-which ran on an inside page, of course-the Office of Independent Counsel is about to release its final report on the 900 Read More
A Vast Conspiracy , by Jeffrey Toobin. Random House, 422 pages, $25.95.
Where were you when President Clinton was impeached? Or when he was acquitted? Can you believe that you’ve not only forgotten, but that the whole ugly thing ended just a year ago?
Jeffrey Toobin recalls it all, and in A Vast Conspiracy Read More
At long last, Kenneth Starr has returned to private life, but not without a few final gestures of contempt for the public. He is leaving, but his political inquisition lives on.
To complete his appointed tasks as independent counsel, including a report on his five-year investigation of the President, Mr. Starr has installed an associate Read More