Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Cheney and the Secrecy Thing

I don't know why I haven't thought of it before.

It's simple, really.

When Cheney and Bush came to office one of the first moves they made was to decree by executive fiat that presidential records would no longer be available to historians and scholars after the end of a president's term in office - unless the president himself or his surviving heirs allow it.

Then there's Cheney's refusal to let anyone know exactly who he meets in the course of his daily duties, particularly the energy-sector cronies alongside whom he built his personal fortune and who crafted the nation's current policies on oil, and on energy in general.

The lofty reason for re-thinking the idea that the people are entitled to know what their elected officials are doing was this: "if I can't meet in secret with anyone I want, whenever I want, with the secret agenda I want, then the advice I would receive would be tainted by partisanship."

Cheney: 1
History: 0

The vice president has also famously claimed executive privilege as a reason for not complying with the Senate when it has requested - or subpoenaed - records.

But now it's a doozy. The vice president does not want historians or anyone else poring over his papers. The law clearly requires all executive-branch documents to be archived by the National Archives for posterity (if not for use at trial). Cheney's excuse - his rationale - his paranoid justification -is that - get this - he's not a part of the executive branch at all!

He's not in the cabinet, doesn't work for the president. Turns out, he is just the humble president of the Senate... not an executive branch official at all.

So naturally, the National Archives can't get their grubby, secrecy-thwarting, democracy-loving, dirty little hands on his noodling doodles.

Love to read his notes, wouldn't you?

But here's the simple redux: Why would someone be almost pathologically averse to being known, and to having his deeds known, not just by today's prying eyes, but the eyes of history?

The answer:

Because he's a crook.


exgrad said...

Okay, I hate to say it but here goes.....


okay, that was a bit nasty. It's actually something that many of us have a hard time getting around. You see, we all theoretically believe that "politicians are crooks" (ask any American; odds are you'll get something like this, especially since Watergate). But for some danged reason (even after Watergate)we have a hard time believing it of those in the highest offices.... well, maybe if it's a member of the opposing party, but realistically we don't think these guys are truly avaristic. If we were to believe this, and to fit this in with our own notions that this really is a Democracy, and still live with ourselves would require mental gymnastics beyond most of us. So we assume that if we ourselves are not bad people, how could we elect a bad person?

The problem is that if these guys really ARE corrupt, and of the claims and accusations we make about them are irrelevant (if not dangerous). I mean, who goes up to the guy with a gun pointing at you and yells "crook!"? You wouldn't have a very long life-expectancy after that.

We yell and scream about these guys, who may be literally not much better than a well-organized and more powerful Tony Soprano... if what we say is true; well then... um, we're in real trouble. Who's going to enforce it if the people hired to enforce it are hired by the same criminals?

Just watch out when their cover is truly blown... there's nothing more dangerous than a cornered dog.

Neil McKenty said...

Well, yes Cheney's a crook and so is Bush.

Which begs the question: Why haven't these guys been impeached. These bloodsuckers impeached Bill Clinton for having a sexual relationship with a consenting adult. What about impeAching a president that lied the nation into war?

Hope you will look me up at neilmckenty.wordpress.com