Dick Cheney, Tin Man

Well, Dick Cheney finally got a heart. The supreme irony of a man who had such contempt for the public ‘commons’ now benefiting from one of society’s most scarce resources – a human heart…  I wonder if he has any idea of the many steps that others have taken on his behalf to get him back on his feet.  I think this might be an opportune moment, since it’s generally considered shabby to speak ill of the dead, to take a little pre-emptive trip down memory lane.

For the “scholarly” version, I recommend this excellent recap of the Cheney years. Here’s mine: “Hey, Dick, thanks for being a total dick!” Sorry, was that too jejeune for a 48 year-old educator/mother/upstanding citizen?  I don’t think it is. I actually think Vice President Cheney deserves much worse than a puerile, inconsequential, school boyish insult. I mean, in all seriousness, just where to do we begin?

Voting against the Department of Education and Head Start and a non-binding resolution calling for Mandela’s release from prison? Halliburton? Good heavens, how pedestrian!  How about going to war on a whim and a lie? And remember that neat trick: WATER BOARDING? (Quick refresher in case we start getting a little fuzzy on the specifics: Everyone had agreed water boarding was torture from, like, the Spanish Inquisition all the way on up to Hitler and Churchill and Pol Pot and the KGB and Maggie Thatcher and Ronald Reagan… it was one of those rare things that the pillars of democracy and the weasels of evil could all get behind: water boarding is torture! Until our VP came along and helpfully explained that it was just the “enhanced interrogation methods” of which he remains exceptionally proud. Phew! I was so confused.

And how about those phony links you trumped up between Iraq and Al Qaeda long after the truth was known? Or your refusal to comply with federal reporting mandates, citing “executive privilege?” Or the CIA leak scandal?  Or that big F-you to the majority of Americans who had the temerity to grow weary of war (“So?”) And that clever way you deleted major sections on global warming in the EPA report and then pretended it was only because the science was so bad. LOL! And there’s that long chapter we could write titled: “Expansion of Powers.”

And can we get personal here, Dick, since your whole gravitas thing was always predicated on having the testosterone to stand up to the bad guys? I think it’s only fair therefore to call you out on your staggering lack of manliness evinced by, for example, sending thousands of young people to their deaths while proudly defending your own five deferments due to “other priorities,” such as flunking out of Yale college (twice) after accepting its scholarship money, and later blaming your sophomoric behavior on the university’s ‘East Coast’ culture and academic rigor. Not to mention your very unsportsmanlike hunting (sic) practices, which resulted in a little public relations misunderstanding involving an acquaintance whose head and chest you shot up and whose subsequent silent” heart attack you apparently triggered. (A little empathy for a heart attack victim wouldn’t kill you now, would it?) And who can forget the classy new tradition you’ve launched of publicly trashing a sitting president.

I do like your stance on the gays. But, really, no extra credit for you, Dick, because you’re just trying to protect the ones you love. No fair. Civil society doesn’t work that way. You have to protect everyone. And that’s why, at the end of the day, despite  your totally sub-optimal public service, I still wish you the speediest recovery and goodwill. Bonne chance!

About ErikaChristakis

Yale Lecturer in early childhood education/Licensed teacher/Former preschool director/author. In possession of: unmarketable bachelor’s degree (Harvard, anthropology), semi-marketable graduate degrees (public health, education…). Rewarding career at the intersection of family, society, and schools (including long stint in parenting vortex). Forging a new path to connect all of the above.
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