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Chasing Cheney in the Ambulance


Lost amid all the heavy breathing by the mainstream press reporters who have gotten so worked up over the vice presidential shooting is the story of the vice-presidential ambulance.

How many of us knew that the country’s vice president–a man that most politically aware citizens know is the country’s real leader behind the scenes–is so health-impaired that he always travels with a fully staffed ambulance–including heart specialist–in tow?

This is the real secret, not the 14-hour reporting delay regarding Cheney’s shooting of his hunting buddy, that has been kept from the American people not for hours but for years.

The fact that the nation’s vice president and de-facto leader is so frail and so close to death’s door, while perhaps heartening to some who see him as the architect of the war-mongering madness currently gripping the nation’s policy-making establishment, should surely have been a major topic of conversation during the 2004 election.

But nobody mentioned it.

It’s also worth pointing out that this same administration that is spending what must be millions of dollars on a mobile cardiac unit to travel with the vice president is calling for cuts in Medicare and Medicaid that will force poor Americans and the elderly to make do with second-tier medications for such things as heart conditions.

There seems to be a story there.

The corporate media is patting itself on the back for its aggressive pursuit of the Harry Whittington shooting incident by the Vice President, but why didn’t the White House press corps tell us long ago about the vice president’s medical squad?

While we’re at it, why are these reporters able to get so worked up and aggressive when it comes to a pretty inconsequential vice presidential shooting incident, yet they can’t seem to bring themselves to ask the president or vice president about the latest British memo showing that Bush was not only completely committed to war against Iraq in July, 2002, but actually suggested to British Prime Minister Tony Blair that he might have US planes painted in UN colors shot down over Iraq as a pretext to invade. This story, much more important than the VP’s bad marksmanship, has been blacked out in the U.S. by our selectively diligent Fourth Estate practitioners.

The unfortunate upshot of all this misdirected reportorial zeal is that Cheney will now probably be dissuaded from going hunting anymore. What we should be doing is leaving the guy alone, in hopes that he’ll make more trips to the Armstrong ranch in the company of key Neocon strategists, new Supreme Court members and key Senate and House leaders.



Dave Lindorff is a founding member of ThisCantBeHappening!, an online newspaper collective, and is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press).

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