Patrick Fitzgerald: The Grown-Up in the Room:
There's a fantasy world that can be spun out among children frolicking in a playroom. The children can take heaping piles of garbage and dirty diapers and empty boxes and colored cloth and construct something they see as an elaborate castle, a wonderland, if you will, where they can enact their epic tales of glories, of princesses and pirates, of villains and dragons, of superheroes and fairies. If you are one of the children, or even a child who comes into the playroom late, you will become a part of the illusionary kingdom, a palette from which fears, anxieties, and wishes are played out to their often extreme ends. It's a beautiful, self-contained environment, the world of children, and grown-ups often harbor secret desires to become part of it.

But sometimes, into the fantastic realms of juvenile imagination, an adult must walk in and point out the reality of the situation. Looking around the destroyed room, the adult calls things by their names: No, Scooter, that's not a unicorn, that's a trash-filled bag with a used paper towel roll on it. No, Ann, it's not make-up and a wig- you're smearing poop from a diaper on your face and putting snot-ridden tissues on your head. No, Sean, you're not a fireman - you've just dropped your pants and pissed everywhere. And you know what, kids? It's time to clean up this goddamn room.

When Patrick Fitzgerald finally spoke today, he spoke as the grown-up, the one who decided to put to rest all the lies and misconceptions about what actually occurred not only to Valerie Wilson, but the nation as a whole. Said Fitzgerald at his press conference explaining his indictment of Irving Lewis "Scooter" Libby on five charges related to the investigation of the leak of Wilson's name, "Valerie Wilson was a CIA officer. In July 2003, the fact that Valerie Wilson was a CIA officer was classified...Valerie Wilson's cover was blown in July 2003." See that? He's stating as fact something that he knows, not supposing, not amending.

And when Fitzgerald spoke of Wilson's blown cover, he put it in terms of national security. He laid out what Scooter did and how he lied about it. Then he delivered the smackdown to the Bush administration's flouting of laws: "[W]hat we need to also show the world is that we can also apply the same safeguards to all our citizens, including high officials. Much as they must be bound by the law, they must follow the same rules."

To Kay Bailey Hutchison and the rest, Fitzgerald again stood up like the grown-up among the children and said, "This is a very serious matter and compromising national security information is a very serious matter. But the need to get to the bottom of what happened and whether national security was compromised by inadvertence, by recklessness, by maliciousness is extremely important. We need to know the truth. And anyone who would go into a grand jury and lie, obstruct and impede the investigation has committed a serious crime."

When the fantasy is broken, some children cry, some run, some kick the grown-up, some go ahead and start to clean up the room. The Rude Pundit expects lots of crying, running, and kicking in the weeks and months ahead, and very little effort at picking up the shit that's been flung.

Coming up: Rove's leather slave reacts.