Tricky Dicky Cheney and Why NOT to Place Any Faith in the American Public’s Ability to Sniff out a Rat

Because ’08 was the first election I was provided the opportunity to cast a ballot, I personally take no responsibility for the politics of the early 21st Century. Both the country and the global community were coming off an ecstatic, peaceful, and hopeful millennial celebration. Cities cloaked with decorations, fireworks exploding across time-zones and war-zones, mankind seemed to be at a sort of omega point in terms of technology and economic prosperity… we had created the internet, allowing for instant global communication and information sharing that truly had (still has) the potential to unite men and women across all borders… the walls were beginning to break down and there was a true sense of hopefulness that came with the arrival of 2000 AD.

Then came Dick Cheney, the sallow little shit of an onion bulb, doused in carbolic acid substituting a rusted bayonet for a flowering shoot. He remained dormant for decades, subtly popping up during bleak February midnights when the Gaian mind had let her guard down. He started his career in fear-mongering as a White House Staff Assistant during the heat of the Watergate scandal. Dicky was quick to pal up with Donald Rumsfeld (the “ruthless little bastard” of Nixon’s administration) and begin his political education in military spending, cutting social welfare programs, and increasing private sector influence so once your man goes out (like Gerald Ford was going to get re-elected) you’ve got something to get into. Cheney served as The Great Pardoner’s Chief of Staff and 1976 campaign manager after impressing Rummy and the good ol’ boys, but once Ford stumbled through his second debate and claimed that there was no Soviet domination in Eastern Europe, the gig was up. But Cheney had taken keen notes from Rummy (who at this point was whetting up his private interest appetite and taking control of a pharmaceutical corporation) and realized before he was able to loot a company he would have to garnish the relationships necessary to book him in the bridal suite…Congress, the perfect training ground.

Cheney’s congressional record is… incredible… not only did he oppose legislation having to do with providing opportunities for lower-class families (Head Start Program), in terms of education he didn’t even believe the United States needed a federal body for oversight (voted against the creation of the Department of Education)… he opposed the Equal Rights Amendment for women and the Clean Water Act and the institution of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day… in eleven years he was only involved in the passing of two bills. You can’t blame the man though, as most of his precious time in Washington was spent recruiting big-money cronies and running doomsday scenarios for the Reagan administration…he was just doing his job.

George the Elder appointed Cheney as Secretary of Defense in 1989 and the reins flew off the hyperactive congressman. A political career spent fighting for gun control and increasing the military’s budget made him an ideal candidate, as Congress passed his appointment 92-0. Soon enough we had invaded Panama and found ourselves in the Gulf War (stay tuned for later episodes…the War of Iraq, the War of Afghanistan) with Cheney rambling, “We’re always going to be involved in the Middle East. Maybe it’s part of our national character…” His rhetoric was becoming sharp and his relationship with the Saudis deep… Desert Storm lasted only 100 hours but Cheney had planted the seeds that would allow him to gallup back across the Persian shores for Saddam Hussein and his weapons of mass destruction. Once Bush the Elder’s term ended, Cheney looked back to his notes from the old days with Rummy: time to cash in.

Enter Halliburton, one of the world’s largest oilfield services companies (remember those meetings with the Saudis? remember all those burning oil wells from 1991? remember that Pentagon multi-million dollar assignment in 1992, at the request of Sec. of Defense Cheney?) with a corporate headquarters in Dubai. From 1995 to 2000 Cheney served as the Fortune 500’s CEO (without any prior business experience) and saw the company go from 73rd to 18th on the Pentagon’s list of top contractors. The connections with the sultans and princes had been prinked and primed… the oil rush was on and stock prices rose (inflated) considerably during Cheney’s tenure.

Then came George the Dumber… Cheney knew from his days spent defending the country with George the Elder that the younger, Dumber son would be the perfect pawn for an international corporate hi-jacking and war-profiteering the likes of which the planet had never seen. Halliburton received a $7 Billion contract for the Iraq War within a couple of years after gifting the dry-oyster-eye’d Cheney’s $33 Million in severance pay (Cheney allegedly cut all interests with the company so he could run as un-biased and fair Vice President). More wars, more defense contracts, more greed, more corruption…ad nauseam.

The world economy is still trying to recover from the reckless money-insufflating that Cheney and Rummy and the Bush boys took part in, but WE, the electorate, are to blame. How did no one see this coming? There were enough warning signs and red flags and ‘what the fuck’ moments to stretch this piece into an easy 10,000 words… but we still elected the bastard…twice! Even after we knew that Halliburton was fattening up their contracts and engaging in illegal business practices… were Al Gore and John Kerry completely lacking in the department of testicular fortitude? Did their campaign managers fall into complicated ether addictions? I wish these were the case, but as I said, any and all answers come down to the American people casting their votes. The culture surrounding a General Election, the punditry and the advertisements and the television appearances and the ‘first impression’ experts and facial recognition savants, it all has come to a point of such dizzying celebrity and non-sense that the average voter can’t keep up. The enormous numbers involved and the legal mire accompanying and the closed-door nature of how Cheney operated within Halliburton was just enough to throw just enough of the populi off the scent… it still makes no sense to me, and it never will.

I’m just worried the same bullshit geo-political corporate-cronyism is about to unfold before our eyes even with the memories of Bush/Cheney still fresh in our field of vision. Masochism is quickly becoming an American virtue, and this election could seal the deal.

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