Apparently, all that needs to happen to provoke a White House Administration official's resignation is: a bunch of blowhards and crazies find something someone once said that was once extreme. Fixate, extrapolate, instigate, bring mainstream. And Van Jones resigned yesterday.
What happened? The White House was weakened and brought to their knees by a media campaign they—with all of their supposed love, affection, and adoration from the mainstream media—couldn't fight to win on a bloodied mainstream media's battleground. And the mainstream media played right along with a narrative they couldn't drive, so instead, piggybacked on: check it out: the White House employs a guy with extreme beliefs. Easy enough.
Not that Van Jones, an environmental czar, was the biggest bounty in the world, but this can't be seen as anything other than a huge setback in their war to move forward against the insane lies, conspiracies, and successful media guerrilla tactics pushed forward by neoconservative (for lack of a better word) crazies: Birthers, Death Panel Pushers, and their ilk.
The question is: why? Republican Gov. Mark Sanford of South Carolina lies about his whereabouts, getting his colleagues to appropriate his story, and admits to having an Argentinean lovebird, going against a basic republican talking point of family values. Republican Sen. John Ensign of Nevada: an affair, exposed, sans resignation. All Van Jones did was say some incendiary things—without any cover-up, or illicit activity, things that were more or less in his past and distanced from his current political agenda—and he became the Obama administration's biggest casualty to date.
Politico points out the other casualties of the Obama administration: Military Office Director Louis Caldera, White House Communications Director Ellen Moran's supposedly lateral promotion, Gen. David McKiernan, and Steve Rattner. Caldera and Moran were victims of media battles, McKiernan and Rattner to lesser degrees.
If you went through any administration's subscription cards of yore, you'd probably find a few anarchists amongst their ranks going by what they read. Maybe shuffling through every comment they've ever tossed out on the internet, or in private conversation, or in a paper could turn over a few pretty interesting rocks. And if this is all it takes for an administration official to resign, damn. But it isn't. It requires the intricate, smart campaign waged on Van Jones. One way said campaign wasn't fought: hard.
Is Obama gonna keep bowing to the will of political extremists every time something "gets in the way" of his agenda? At the rate they're going, they're not going to have any foot soldiers left to fight it.
Next up: his school speech. Despite picking up a Republican ally here and there—who, as traditionalists, think Obama should be able to address schools, like any other president—they've already started to lose ground on it. Schools are offering students whose parents don't approve of their kids hearing out the president on education "alternative programming" as an opt-out of the speech. Refusing to recite the pledge of allegiance for religious beliefs: one thing. Making a teacher's curriculum a political sacrificial lamb is another one, entirely. Obama's not just losing the media war for his White House, but for his constituency, now, as well.
Jones' resignation letter:
"I am resigning my post at the Council on Environmental Quality, effective today.
On the eve of historic fights for health care and clean energy, opponents of reform have mounted a vicious smear campaign against me. They are using lies and distortions to distract and divide.
I have been inundated with calls - from across the political spectrum - urging me to "stay and fight."
But I came here to fight for others, not for myself. I cannot in good conscience ask my colleagues to expend precious time and energy defending or explaining my past. We need all hands on deck, fighting for the future.
It has been a great honor to serve my country and my President in this capacity. I thank everyone who has offered support and encouragement. I am proud to have been able to make a contribution to the clean energy future. I will continue to do so, in the months and years ahead."