The Man for Whom Democracy Is “Moral Weakness”

Former Vice-President Dick Cheney is making the rounds to promote his upcoming memoirs, in which, apparently, he plans to break his  rule about not airing policy disagreements in public and tell us how deeply disappointed he is in his erstwhile boss, for — although I have never thought of George W. Bush along these lines — not being sufficiently dismissive of public opinion:

In his first few months after leaving office, former vice president Richard B. Cheney threw himself into public combat against the “far left” agenda of the new commander in chief. More private reflections, as his memoir takes shape in slashing longhand on legal pads, have opened a second front against Cheney’s White House partner of eight years, George W. Bush.

Cheney’s disappointment with the former president surfaced recently in one of the informal conversations he is holding to discuss the book with authors, diplomats, policy experts and past colleagues. …

“In the second term, he felt Bush was moving away from him,” said a participant in the recent gathering, describing Cheney’s reply. “He said Bush was shackled by the public reaction and the criticism he took. Bush was more malleable to that. The implication was that Bush had gone soft on him, or rather Bush had hardened against Cheney’s advice. He’d showed an independence that Cheney didn’t see coming. It was clear that Cheney’s doctrine was cast-iron strength at all times — never apologize, never explain — and Bush moved toward the conciliatory.”

Cheney was angry with Bush over Donald Rumsfeld’s dismissal, and he calls Rumsfeld the “finest secretary of defense” in U.S. history.

Completely unmoored from reality, obviously. But more than that, Cheney’s view of democracy as an encumbrance to national security is chilling — especially when you read his associates saying if it hadn’t been for Bush’s reluctance, Cheney would have gone even further:

“What impressed me was his continuing zeal,” said an associate who discussed the book with Cheney. “He hadn’t stepped back a bit from the positions he took in office to a more relaxed, Olympian view. He was still very much in the fray. He’s not going to soften anything or accommodate shifts of conscience. There was no sense in which he looked back and said, ‘I wish I’d done something differently.’ Rather, there was a sense that they hadn’t gone far enough. If he’d been equipped with a group of people as ideologically rigorous as he was, they’d have been able to push further.”

One Response to “The Man for Whom Democracy Is “Moral Weakness””

  1. Jack Jodell says:

    Cheney is deranged and paranoid. He, his daughter, AND his wife are all arrogant pseudo-aristocrats. Their smugness, and complete lack of understanding about, as well as obvious contempt for, our laws and democratic system, is unforgivable. This man has an obsessive preoccupation with terror which has led him to commit extreme, unconstitutional acts time after time. He is also a pathological liar to boot. Plus, he is a war criminal who should be tried, convicted, and punished. The man is an absolute failure who has NOT protected this country, and he should be relegated to the scrap heap of history along with those other two war criminals, W and Donald Rumsfeld. Sorry, Cheney—your shit DOES stink, and BAD!

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