Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Sort of a weird duck

Message to McNeil-Lehrer reporters, and all reporters, really: stop calling it the “Terrorist Surveillance Program.”

Larry King interviewed Richard Beelzebub Cheney today. Asked him, “do you ever, as an intelligent person, look in the mirror and say, maybe I’m wrong?” That is a silly question. Everyone knows Cheney casts no reflection.

Cheney admitted that the “last throes” line was wrong.

But of course they’re in the last throes now. To prove it, he quotes the O’Hanlon & Pollack op-ed piece from yesterday’s NYT, “not exactly a friendly publication”.

He would not admit to being either in the executive or the legislative branch: “the Vice President is sort of a weird duck”. Duck. With a “d.”

He claims not to remember if he sent Gonzo & Card to harass Ashcroft in the hospital. “I don’t recall that I gave instructions to that effect.” Really, he ordered so many officials to bother so many post-op patients – it’s sort of a hobby of his – that it’s hard to keep track.

He says the letter that Undersecretary of Defense Eric Edelman sent to Hillary castigating her for asking for the details of plans for withdrawal of troops from Iraq was “a good letter.” He says it’s “an important principle” not to tell Congress anything about military operations.

However, he denies Walter Mondale’s charge that he has a “near total aversion to the notion of accountability.” “Fact is, my job has been to serve the President. ... In terms of accountability, I’m accountable to him.” And you can’t get much more accountable than that.

He says the Scooter Libby commutation was “a good outcome.” Because Larry King failed to ask the question, he doesn’t repeat what he told CBS a couple of days ago, that he thinks the jury was wrong to convict.

He says we have to keep Guantanamo open because of people like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed: “We need to hold him someplace. He’s held at Guantanamo.” Because we really don’t have any, what do you call them, prisons, here on the mainland. Nope, total dearth of rooms with bars in the United States.

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