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“Make This Monster Pay A Price”: Why We Needed To Hear From Dick Cheney One Last Time

Former Vice President Dick Cheney’s time is about up, in many senses. For a Republican Party trying to look forward, he shouldn’t be a go-to voice for the media on national security policy. His sneering attacks on President Obama aren’t news anymore. The man who famously said, “It’s my new heart, not someone else’s old heart,” about the donor to his taxpayer-funded heart transplant should have lost the power to shock us by now. Unless he has a sudden attack of conscience, and apologizes for his career, he has nothing to say worth hearing.

Except on the Senate Intelligence Committee’s torture report. There’s been some anger on the left that Cheney took his seat yet again on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday, but I think he belonged there, one last time. Let the American people hear from the man who claims that interrogation methods we prosecuted after World War II, as well as others even more depraved, aren’t actually torture.

Cheney is such a monster that he couldn’t even keep himself from defending “rectal feeding.” While he acknowledged that it “was not one of the techniques that was approved,” he sanctioned it nonetheless. “I believe it was done for medical reasons. … It wasn’t torture in terms of it wasn’t part of the program.”

That would seem to imply that anything that was “part of the program” was torture, which of course Cheney denies.

Ironically, earlier on Fox News Cheney said, “I don’t know anything about” rectal feeding or rectal rehydration (he may well have been lying). But by the time he got to “MTP,” he wasn’t willing to let any torture method go undefended. And even host Chuck Todd noting that “the medical community has said there is no medical reason to do this” didn’t shame him.

Todd asked Cheney some tough questions about U.S. prosecution of Japanese officials who waterboarded Americans, about the fact that at least a quarter of the detainees were innocent and, of course, about rectal feeding. Unfortunately, Cheney either dodged or lied.

Their exchange about innocent detainees showed Cheney at his most sociopathic:

TODD: Twenty-five percent of the detainees, though, twenty-five percent turned out to be innocent. They were released.

CHENEY: Where are you going to draw the line, Chuck? How are –

TODD: Well, I’m asking you.

CHENEY: — you going to know?

(CROSSTALK)

TODD: Is that too high? You’re okay with that margin for error?

CHENEY: I have no problem as long as we achieve our objective. And our objective is to get the guys who did 9/11 and it is to avoid another attack against the United States. I was prepared and we did. We got the authorization from the president and authorization from the Justice Department to go forward with the program. It worked. It worked now for 13 years.

“I have no problem” if 25 percent of the people we detained and potentially tortured were innocent. Take that in. It’s the same mentality that leads to police shooting unarmed black men in the name of public safety. But it squares with Cheney’s famous “one percent doctrine” that governed the aftermath to 9/11: If there’s even 1 percent chance that terrorists might have a weapon of mass destruction, the U.S. should act as if it’s a certainty, and do whatever it takes to stop them.

It also squares with Cheney telling Larry King, about his lifesaving heart donor, “I don’t spend time wondering who had it, what they’d done, what kind of person.”

America’s torture architect got a new heart, but he can never get a soul. Americans needed to see that display of authoritarian arrogance on Sunday. But now let’s hope he goes away.

 

By: Joan Walsh, Editor at Large, Salon, December 15, 2014

December 16, 2014 - Posted by | Dick Cheney, National Security, Torture | , , , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. If ever there was an embarrassment to the U.S. it would be Dick Cheney.

    He is a truly despicable individual; a sociopath; sadist; and God only knows what else.

    The fact that we have tolerated his type for this long is intolerable. The fact that he is not alone is a proven statistic.

    Approximately 1/4 of the people around you have no (read that zero; nil; zilch; nada) conscience.

    That isn’t so hard to believe. You still may not know one of these folks personally while your neighbor may know four or five.

    Partly it depends on what kind of work you do; who you already know; how much money you have (they are attracted to people with money). They are attracted to any situation which they can exploit to their benefit. They are not all equal. Some don’t feel guilt when they do wrong but are not capable of taking advantage of that lack because they are not intelligent enough or some other reason. Others are total sociopaths and become serial killers. In between is everything in between. Some sociopaths become CEOs of Fortune 100 businesses. Some use their complete lack of empathy to become great surgeons; saving many lives. And some? Some use it to become petty demigods or sadistic interrogators or political power brokers.

    I think you can guess for yourself where I might place Dick (“The Dick”) Cheney on that scale.

    Just think. Dick could have been President but for the fatal flaw which is that Dick Cheney can’t sustain the lie. Under pressure he will; not so much break down or fold but; under pressure Dick will “Break out”. He will explode in a self-righteous rant because you see; Dick Cheney is not to be questioned; ever. He doesn’t believe Peons such as the American people (he really does see himself as above EVERYONE) have the right to question his word; decisions; philosophy etc. This is why Dick won’t run. This is why Dick couldn’t win. Not that he minds lying. He does mind being questioned to begin with. And it could easily be argued that Dick was President for all intents and purposes from 2001 to 2009 and look where that got us. The idea is that he ran this nation under the guise of vice-president. Though G.W. Bush demanded credit for the decisions made; it was dick who held the reigns and kept G.W. happy and placated by allowing the invasion of Iraq; the primary reason Bush desired the Presidency to begin with in order to avenge the honor of his “Diddy”. So Georgie gets the Iraqi sand-box and leaves Dick to do the work. Anyone who has ever listened to and watched a speech by G.W. knows he doesn’t have the I.Q. to handle the job. He’s still trying to figure out why Loving Fish-Sticks, makes him a Gay Fish.

    No; Dick is the real 43rd President. Dick is the brains; the guts; and the ego needed to feed the Military Industrial Complex; Sodomize the American people; destroy the economy; and he understands that G.W. Bush is essentially a thirteen year old boy who is happy as long as he gets to rant now and then and take the credit for anything good that happens by chance along the way.

    These guys don’t become Republican Politicians by chance. they are born and bred to be narrow minded, greedy fools. They are taught not to think but only to obey the Party line.

    I f I supported The Death Penalty, Dick would be the first murderer in my court but I don’t; even for him. I do support the idea that is a political Dinosaur and should never be asked for an opinion again.

    Like

    Comment by angrymanspeaks | December 16, 2014 | Reply

  2. Who knows what lurks in men’s hearts?
    Dick Cheney do
    Who knows the depths to which men can descend?
    Dick Cheney do
    Who will stop the evil that men are capable of?
    Not Dick Cheney.

    Like

    Comment by walthe310 | December 16, 2014 | Reply


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