Former Vice President and Reigning Godfather of the Undead, Dick Cheney, (R-Ghoul) appeared on NBC’s Today Show this morning, in an interview rife with his usual smirking guile. You might think you’re reading The Onion when you find out why he was on the program — to promote his new book Heart: An American Medical Odyssey.
Unfortunately, that isn’t where the true comedy lies. It was when he defended Tea Partiers with this ridiculous quote, as reported on Mediaite: “
These are Americans,” he said. “They’re loyal, they’re patriotic and taxpayers, and they’re fed up with what they see happening in Washington. I think it’s a normal, healthy reaction and the fact that the party is having to adjust to it is positive.”
Stop and think about where you were in post-9/11 America. Perhaps in the build-up to the Iraq War. Or when you criticized the Patriot Act. Maybe you spoke up against torture. Or you didn’t want two wars, tax cuts for the upper 2%, or an expansion of Medicare that were all unfunded, causing our debt to skyrocket at an unprecedented pace. Most likely if you did any or all of the preceding, Cheney and untold thousands of ‘real Americans’ accused you of being a traitor, a terrorist sympathizer, or worse. In fact, what you were being was a loyal, patriotic, taxpaying American fed up with what you saw happening in Washington. You were reacting normally and healthily.
Getting past this putrid mountain of shamelessness , he is continuing this past week’s narrative of defining the Tea Party as the haven of “real Americans,” and by golly, they’re just regular folks being pressed down by the iron heel of socialist big gub’mint. By implication, that ‘radical’ (code for ‘socialist’ when you want to appear respectable) in the White House is un-American, and so is anyone who voted for him. It’s an ancient conceit, and an eternally popular tool of the American Right. Cheney, who is artful at this sort of thing, furthers his cause by laying claim to the establishment wing, downplaying talk of a party schism, and just having a good chuckle on a softball morning news program. Beware of those who define ‘real patriotism’ in terms of ideology or party, especially when floated by a draft dodger like Dick Cheney.
According to Mediate, Cheney said that the best thing he can do for his daughter’s senatorial campaign in Wyoming is “stay out of the way.”
Why can’t he extend that courtesy to the rest of us?
Watch the clip, courtesy of The Today Show below.