Sunday, July 12, 2009

Eric Holder and Sharon Malone Holder: Holders - The Uncommonly Elegant Pair

Drudge pointed me to the latest administration distraction in the form a Newsweek article on Attorney General Eric Holder and the decision weighing so heavily on his mind: do I, or do I not, prosecute the Bush administration for "brutal interrogation practices." In the midst of the diversion I was treated to the "uncommonly elegant pair," Eric Holder and his wife Sharon Malone Holder (or maybe it's just Sharon Malone).

Eric Holder and Sharon Malone Holder
If you are a non-confrontational and trusting person, in the mould of Eric Holder, you might believe that Barack Obama is hesitant to prosecute the previous administration. If you are a grown-up who has lived a bit of life, you've already made a fist and shoved it at something. My hubby is convinced that torture prosecutions are diversionary to keep the focus off of Pelosi, the CIA, Panetta, and the disasterous economy. I hope that's the case. We'll have to wait and see, but right now, I want to give some of the flavor of this piece of Newsweek garbage:
Holder is not a natural renegade. His first instinct is to shy away from confrontation, to search for common ground.
You may remember when Holder gave a speech for Black History Month and called America and our race relations, a "nations of cowards." Nothing confrontational, not to mention mean-spirited in that statement? Washington, D.C. is characterized as "famous for it's drabness," but the Obamas and the Holders have arrived:
When Holder and his wife, Sharon Malone, glide into a dinner party they change the atmosphere....they're an attractive, poised, and uncommonly elegant pair—not unlike the new first couple.
Holder says he has learned his lesson about the pardon of Marc Rich. No coincidence that when a politician make an egregious mistake, the path is to acknowledge how wrong you were and move on, but there's one thing to remember, Holder knew this pardon was wrong then...there was nothing to justify except for Marc Rich's wife's money in the Clinton bank account and he knows it was wrong today. Saying "I blew" it is an insult to Americans. Holder said:
...the notion that you would take actions based on political considerations runs counter to everything in my DNA.
And, the man takes solace in his AG confirmation hearing that made him talk about the Marc Rich pardon, allowed him to air his regret - he's feeling all better now:
But his wife says that part of what drives him today is a continuing hunger for redemption.
But she also casts the episode as a lesson about character, arguing that her husband's trusting nature was exploited by Rich's conniving lawyers. "Eric sees himself as the nice guy. In a lot of ways that's a good thing. He's always saying, 'You get more out of people with kindness than meanness.' But when he leaves the 'nice guy' behind, that's when he's strongest."
If you do not remember the details of the Marc Rich case:
In 1983, financier Rich was indicted for evading more than $48 million in taxes, and charged with 51 counts of tax fraud, as well as running illegal oil deals with Iran during the 1979-1980 hostage crisis. During his last week in office, President Bill Clinton pardoned Rich, who had fled the U.S. during his prosecution and was residing in Switzerland.
Today, the man is living freely in a villa on the shores of Lake Lucerne in Switzerland. At a speech at West Point in April:
Holder cited George Washington's admonition at the Battle of Trenton, Christmas 1776, that "captive British soldiers were to be treated with humanity, regardless of how Colonial soldiers captured in battle might be treated.
We are not fighting civilized nations. Our detainees follow a religion and a government that directs and demands beheadings, rapes, stonings, and hangings. Our interrogations were not battlefield brutality, for brutality's sake, but controlled attempts to get information from the enemy that might save lives elsewhere. After Holder "holed up" in his office to go over the CIA's classified report on interrogation abuses (Holder read it twice, once as a lawyer and once at a "more emotional level."):
He was "shocked and saddened," he told a friend, by what government servants were alleged to have done in America's name. When he was done he stood at his window for a long time, staring at Constitution Avenue.
What a vision. I can see him now, standing in the window, tall and "elegant," with saddened eyes and a heavy heart...the weight of the Bush administration on his sturdy shoulders. What to do? What to do?

©2007-2012copyrightMaggie M. Thornton