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My friend Rachel Maddow walked on to the set last night saying she'd just heard a prophesied "dog-whistle" tell-tale sign, earlier in the show (namely that Dianne Feinstein had just given anything less than a cheerleader-style answer to the prospect of the Clinton campaign continuing).

I replied I'd just heard a different whistle that the end was nigh, but I couldn't say anything yet pending additional sourcing.

I can say it tonight and before the tv audience gets the full thing, I thought I'd offer up a little preview: At least one very prominent Clinton campaigner has just this week started shopping for a book deal.

Stupid details like this - renting a home in a different city, visiting a university to talk about a lecturing post, booking a vacation at a time when the world thinks you're supposed to be at the busiest - are often the staples of source reporting on anything.

But politically, BDS (Book Deal Syndrome) is one of the top pieces of circumstantial evidence that the tent is being folded, whether the candidate knows it or not. And at least one of Senator Clinton's big names is out there trying to get the proverbial big money for the proverbial big story.

The logic here is very simple. You do not do this if:

A) You believe your candidate (and thus you) are going to be otherwise employed until, say, the morning of January 20, 2017;

B) You believe your candidate (and thus you) are going to be fairly busy between now and, say, the early morning of November 5, 2008.

More over, you do not do this right now if:

C) You believe your candidate (and thus you) are going to be fairly busy after, say, May 20 or June 3 of this year.

One of my sources makes a fourth observation, namely that you also do not do this if:

D) You like your candidate or hope ever to work for him or her again.

I am not quite cynical enough to embrace this last point. It is absolutely plausible somebody on the inside would try to write a happy tale of the Clintons' bold, albeit simultaneously quixotic and toxic, struggle.

It just doesn't seem that any publisher would be likely to buy it. Except maybe Regnery.

UPDATE: A Poll! Because YOU ASKED FOR IT! No entries after 8:01 PM EDT

UPDATE DEUX: Mr Wolfson, through entreaties to our Chuck Todd and a denial to
Ben Smith at Politico.Com, has denied this outright.

But there was something fascinating about the denial to Smith. To wit:

"I have not spoken to any publishers. I have not spoken to any agents. I am not planning on writing a book (at least not about this campaign)."

But I never reported the book was about this campaign.

Originally posted to Keith Olbermann on Thu May 08, 2008 at 04:24 PM PDT.


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