Roger L. Simon

Wagons Circling: The Great "Rahm Feud" at the Washington Post

Call it the “Gunfight at the Not-OK Corral” but things don’t look so happy down at Camp Washington Post these days. That antediluvian dean of political reporters David S. Broder is taking pot shots at his “friend” (when someone calls you “friend,” watch out) WaPo young (well, young-ish) buck Dana Milbank for articles Milbank wrote. Broder also hits Jason Horowitz – evidently not a friend – even harder for a “purported news story” by Horowitz in the paper.

These stories – purported or otherwise – concerned Rahm Emanuel and whether the President’s key adviser was long for his job, currently an expanding brouhaha in the media. To be clear, I have no view on this subject – whether Emanuel is or was good, bad or indifferent – since I am far from the “leakers’ circuit” providing the necessary information or disinformation to form an opinion; nor do I much care, since the entire Obama Administration, as far as I’m concerned, could drop off the planet at this point. But it is all fun to watch, in a gallow’s humor sort of way.

The ironic subtext of all this is that all three WaPo writers were so deep in the tank for Obama during the election they could see China – or Saudi Arabia, as the case may be. But that, of course, was in another country and the dead wench in this instance is an administration approaching rigor mortis. And withal, fingers must be pointed and blame assessed both within the administration and the Washington Post. This blame game within the Post, however, will be more of a dumb show with only egos at stake. Inside the Administration, I predict, it will be more serious blood sport. When things go this bad for so long, people got fired, nasty memoirs written, and so forth. Whether Emanuel or Geithner or someone else will be the first to go, who can tell? But once one goes, many may. And then everything may start to unravel. Get out your popcorn – but don’t eat too much of it. You may not have sufficient health care to deal with the attendant stomach disorders.