The Paul Wolfowitz affair is provoking the usual partisan food-fight, complete with bellowing Hitchens, and it’s dragging on much longer than I expected. I’ve read the arguments from both sides, and frankly they all carried much less weight than did one little detail in Blumenthal’s piece in Salon.com last week:
But in 2006 Wolfowitz made a series of calls to his friends that landed her a job at a new think tank called Foundation for the Future that is funded by the State Department. She was the sole employee, at least in the beginning. The World Bank continued to pay her salary, which was raised by $60,000 to $193,590 annually, more than the $183,500 paid to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, and all of it tax-free. Moreover, Wolfowitz got the State Department to agree that the ratings of her performance would automatically be “outstanding.” Wolfowitz insisted on these terms himself and then misled the World Bank board about what he had done.
Automatically “outstanding”. What a deeply cynical, self-important, “fuck-you” touch. This is what distinguishes a “painful forced choice” from an act of brazen, selfish nepotism.
Firing’s too good for him. Wolfowitz should be made to walk the plank by the Crimson Permanent Assurance.
UPDATE: Hallelujah! Someone has actually found a funny angle to this whole sordid affair. And it’s a beaut!