Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Is Palin, Dick Cheney in Drag or worse?

We would say, no.

She is an entirely different personality type. That's not to say that she won't enjoy the "legal secrecy" that Cheney has instituted, when it is in her best interest, unless Congress makes V.P. secrecy a crime. But she doesn't have the clout or high-ranking allies in D.C. to move mountains as Cheney does.

There is one, and only one, reason that Palin was chosen....O.K..... actually two.

1) The Goopers wouldn't allow McCain to have either of the picks he wanted (Lieberman or Ridge). Why? Because both of those those men are pro-choice.

2) McCain was never going to excite the base (meaning the crusading crackpots of the christian- right, whom he had scolded as agents of intolerance in 2000 (or was that 2000 years ago. Sure seems like it.) . So, Palin was chosen to get out the vote. The votes of the citizens of Wingnuttia are necessary for the Goopers to win. They must have wedge issues so they won't have to talk, with any intellectual depth, about real issues. If they had to seriously address real issues, in more than a sound bite scenario, the GOP would never win another election.

They are on the wrong side of history

by Christine Bowman

The secretive and powerful Dick Cheney has expanded and compromised the office of the vice president. What would Sarah Palin do?

Dick Cheney has spent the past eight years, perhaps more, remaking the vice presidency of the United States of America. He has led the way towards establishing a "unitary executive" and has worked in many ways to expand the powers of the Executive Branch of the U.S. government. No vice president before him has wielded power in the same way or to the same extent. For most observers the first clue of this came in 2001 with Cheney's creation of a secret energy task force.

A few months from now, Cheney presumably will hand over the office of VP to a new occupant. The GOP's candidate for that office, Sarah Palin, appears to be another politician committed to secrecy and central control, judging by her record in Alaska and her campaign thus far for the vice presidency.

(My educated two cents worth: Palin is not Cheney. Cheney is quite content to slither around the back halls of power, spreading toxic slime everywhere he goes. Palin will not be so content to play second fiddle to anyone. She is not a shadow type of gal. This woman will not be easily handled, once they get to the White House if, God forbid, they do and will prove to be a huge pain in the ass for McCain.)

New evidence of Palin's approach was reported by the Associated Press today, regarding her press "availability" (or non-availability) when visiting the United Nations and meeting foreign leaders for the first time:

Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, who has not held a press conference in nearly four weeks of campaigning, initially barred reporters from her first meetings with world leaders Tuesday ... At first, campaign aides told the TV producer, print and news agency reporters in the press pool ... that they would not be admitted ...

Palin bars, then admits reporters to meetings (AP)

Palin and the GOP operatives who orchestrate her events have endeavored and largely succeeded in insulating her from the "free press." Palin began her campaign for the vice presidency August 29th as a near-unknown nationally, yet reporters have had only brief and highly controlled opportunities to vet her more fully for the American public. Even the campaign itself seems to have done only a hasty vetting before announcing her selection. Consequently, Sarah Palin is more image than substance, more stump speech than in-depth analysis, and the election draws near.

Putting another person who embraces secrecy and unilateralism into the upper reaches of the Executive Branch carries with it risks that American voters need to recognize. Former White House Counsel and legal writer John W. Dean has the experience, from his Nixon White House and Watergate days, as well as the constitutional law training, to understand those risks and what harm a vice president can do.

Writing September 19th at, John W. Dean assessed Dick Cheney's tenure as our most recent Vice President. He wrote about Cheney and the Constitution in response to the recently published Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency. A strong case is made in the book that Cheney's lies resulted in congressional approval of the Iraq War under false pretenses.

Last year, Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman and Jo Baker, now of the New York Times, did an extensive series for the Post on Cheney. Now, Gellman has done some more digging, and published the result in a book he released this week: Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency. The book reveals a lie told to a high-ranking fellow Republican, and the difference that lie made. In this column, I'll explain how Cheney defied the separation of powers, and go back to the founding history to show why actions like his matter so profoundly.

Dean summarizes:

In short, it was this lie [to then Republican Majority Leader Richard Armey of Texas] that sealed the nation's fate, and sent us to war in Iraq. By lying to such an influential figure in Congress, Cheney not only may have changed the course of history, but also corrupted the separation of powers with their inherent checks and balances.

Dean accuses Cheney of "monumental dishonesty" and argues: "Cheney's great lie can be viewed not only as a great immorality and violation of the criminal code, but also and more fundamentally as the significant breach of his oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution that it is."

Dean goes on to raise the larger issue of the Republican Party's lack of commitment to the checks and balances mandated by our Constitution and considered essential by the founding fathers. Dean's assessment is that the Republicans in congress today are unwilling to acknowledge Cheney's wrong-doing or to challenge him. This, Dean contrasts to a typical Democratic Party pattern of taking action and demanding accountability, even against "their own," when warranted.

John Dean is a man who stood up to Richard Milhouse Nixon and stood up for the Constitution. At this time in history, forty-some years later, Dean sees no person in government willing or able to stand up to Dick Cheney or challenge his views on government. Dean concludes:

Those of us who follow these matters have long known - and I have written before - that it is Dick Cheney who is molding his hapless and naive president to his will, by effecting endless expansions of Presidential powers, and acting upon Cheney's total disregard of the separation of powers.

Cheney does not seem to believe the Constitution applies to "real leaders" ... Nor does he believe in the separation of powers. ... It has long been clear that Cheney has been corruptly bridging the constitutional separation of powers throughout the Bush/Cheney presidency.

If Armey is right, Dick Cheney has not only behaved improperly, but also criminally: In addition, when lying to Armey, Cheney clearly committed a "high crime or misdemeanor" in his blocking the Constitution's checks and balances from stopping our march into Iraq. During the debates that took place during the Constitution's ratification conventions, it was specifically stated that lying to Congress about matters of war would be an impeachable offense. Congress has also made it a crime.

Nonetheless, nothing is likely to happen to Cheney, for Congress is too busy dealing with the disastrous economy that he and Bush are leaving behind as they head for the door. No one seems inclined to hold Cheney responsible, and he appears totally unconcerned about the wrath of history. Yet in lying even to those in his own party, about reasons to go to war, he has sunk to a low level few have reached, and it is no hyperbole to call his actions treasonous to the structure and spirit of the Republic.

(Perhaps, none of the Jellyfish in D.C. have much interest in holding Cheney responsible for his many crimes, but the people may think differently.)

Such is the legacy a Vice President Palin would inherit. Lying? Okay. Expansive powers? Yes. Secrecy? Of course. There are precedents now.

Is that a risk American voters want to take?


(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. I.U. has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is I.U endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

The Nazis, Fascists and Communists were political parties before they became enemies of liberty and mass murderers.

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