Dick Cheney, former vice president, former Secretary of Defense, former chief of staff, yada, yada, yada walks among us, defying the laws of nature. After repeated heart attacks which, in itself seems a contradiction in terms, the man refuses to die. He’s even survived a period of literal heartlessness, while a machine strapped around his waist pumped blood to his organs and his brain.
Fear not, mortals. His time will come. Maybe not this year. Or next. But eventually. At some point, Satan will call in his chit. Until then, pondering his legacy has become one of my past times. Clearly Cheney is still working on what he considers to be his legacy and it’s equally clear that he’s living in a parallel universe, especially after hearing his most recent remarks.
In his latest diatribe in front of the Wyoming Republican Party, Cheney accused President Obama of choosing second rate people for his security team. This is such a bowl of wrong I don’t even know where to start. Wyoming Republican Party? Really? By Cheney’s standards an Olympic silver medalist could be called second rate, while Cheney himself would be someone who couldn’t qualify for the team.
As architect and owner-operator of the George W. Bush administration, Cheney carved out a unique niche for Bush as an incompetent, unpopular and unsuccessful president. A conspiracy theorist might argue that the political might of the Bush (George H.W.) Dynasty was brought to bear for the sole purpose of re-engaging Iraq on the battlefield. Whether to finish off what they failed to do during the first Gulf War, during which Cheney was Secretary of Defense or to crank up the military-industrial complex there is only one absolute beneficiary of that war. If the name Halliburton isn’t familiar to you, I suggest you Google it. If you’re one of the few who still believe in coincidences, this one’s a doozy. While American troops died and suffered catastrophic injuries, Halliburton, the company once headed up by President and CEO Dick Cheney (1995-2000) reaped HUNDREDS OF BILLIONS in profits in Iraq and Afghanistan. Seriously, Google it.
Even a bare-bones outline of the Bush-Cheney administration offers a dismal study in arrogance, denial and incompetence. The worst terrorist attack on American soil (9/11/01) happened 8 months into their reign. Two wars were initiated with no actual plan for conducting those wars, no exit strategies and no funding. Two rounds of tax cuts further depleted the national piggy bank. Fiscal policy that lead to contraction, unemployment, frozen credit markets and worst decline since the Great Depression. That’s the legacy.
Cheney’s proclamation that Saddam Hussein will “seek domination of the entire Middle East, take control of a great portion of the world’s energy supplies, directly threaten America’s friends throughout the region, and subject the United States or any other nation to nuclear blackmail” proved to be wrong, as was everything else he said. Besides not being worth a “bucket of warm spit”, the Vice Presidency allowed Cheney to be completely wrong about everything all the time and still keep his job.
As it turned out, Colin Powell’s assertion that Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and was attempting to buy enriched uranium in Niger was based on forged documents. When Joe Wilson, former ambassador, representative to and expert on African nations, political adviser to the Chief of Staff of the Army and Special Advisor to President Bill Clinton reported that there was no evidence of Iraq’s presence in Africa, Cheney, Rove, et al circled their wagons and attempted to discredit him. Failing that, they decided to out his wife, Valerie Plame, an undercover CIA operative.
While Cheney was castigating anyone who disagreed with the administration’s foreign policy and labeling them as unpatriotic, un-American and even traitors, he had his advisor, Scooter Libby out a CIA operative in a time of war, an act of treason by definition. Libby took the fall, but anyone with a sense of reason or logic knows that he was just following orders. I almost didn’t mind Libby’s pardon as one of Bush’s parting gifts to the nation.
Second rate, indeed. If John Kerry, Chuck Hagel and John Brennan are second rate, where could that possibly leave Dick Cheney? Oh, yeah. A lying, treasonous bully who shot his friend in the face and then got the friend to apologize to him (Cheney) for all the trouble. If Cheney really wants to improve the way he’ll be remembered, he might consider donating the heart he got last March to someone who actually knows how to use one.