Saturday, May 23, 2009

Why Won't Darth Vader Just Shut Up?

Years ago I was walking through the Mall of America behind a young couple strolling hand in hand. As they talked quietly, I caught something one of them said. "Yeah, but that Cheney. He's just plain evil." I've always remembered that. I can't say I disagree.

Most presidents and vice presidents fade quietly into the background after they have left office. There is some amount of respect for the new administration even when there isn't total agreement. With the mess the past administration has left this country in, you would think they would really be quiet. Former President Bush has done this. Dick Cheney, on the other hand, feels it is his duty to keep spreading his venom, show incredible disrespect to the new president, and defend his appalling behavior and policies during his run. It also shows who was really running the show. According to the Associated Press:
When he walked in Bush's shadow he had to temper his public remarks, stay on the White House message. He could manipulate the levers of powers behind the scenes, which conjured up the image of "Star Wars" villain Darth Vader.
It is bad enough that this man is so fearful that he has to spread this fear to others, and it is bad enough that he is defending torture and other terrible practices. But, to give him a forum to do this is equally sickening:

"I would think the Republicans ought to be shy in using him as their front," said Sen. Carl Levin, D-Michigan, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee. He dismisses Cheney's appearances as if they were old TV reruns.

The worst part? Defending repulsive practices like torture and not taking responsibility for the economic mess left to the current administration:

In his first television interview after leaving office, just 54 days after Obama was sworn in, Cheney said that it's not fair to blame the economic woes on the Bush administration. Cheney said it was a global financial problem that he feared the new administration could use to justify a massive expansion in the government and meddling in the private sector.

Enough already. Go back to Wyoming into the wild blue yonder, put on your cowboy hat, and shut the hell up. The last thing Americans need right now is someone spreading fear. And we certainly don't need your defense of evil. It will take a long time to repair everything - including the United States' reputation around the world.

It was bad enough he was in office for eight years. Just shut your mouth and let the new administration attempt to clean up your mess and quit defending something you should be ashamed of. And while you're at it, show some respect to the new president. President Obama can not only run circles around you in intelligence, but has more commitment and integrity than you'll ever understand.

No comments: