Once upon a time, the names of Liz and Dick conjured up images of glamor and Hollywood royalty, amid the aura of Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. Today, it just sort of makes your skin crawl.
Liz Cheney, daughter of former vice-president Dick Cheney who left office with a 13-percent approval rating, has announced she is running for the Republican nomination as U.S. Senator in Wyoming. The senior senator of the state, Republican Mike Enzi, was a tad shocked. "I thought we were friends," he told the press. Well, that was his first mistake.
In explaining why she is running, Ms. Cheney said, ”Federal government has grown far beyond anything the pioneers of our great state ever could have imagined or would have tolerated.” How she knows that the state's pioneers would have tolerated might be open for debate from actual historical scholars, though she's probably right about the pioneers would have imagined. It's unlikely too that they would have imaged cars, walking on the moon, tablet computers and Viagra. Not to mention Dick and Liz Cheney.
In pure Liz Cheney style, though, her additional reasons had no relationship with the truth. Speaking about President Obama, she said that he --
“has launched a war on our Second Amendment rights," (though she didn't say exactly what that "war" was), "he’s launched a war on our religious freedom," (without noting at all how this supposed "war" was manifesting itself), "he’s used the IRS to launch a war on our freedom of speech," (without noting that this charge has been shown to be a complete untruth) "and he’s used the EPA to launch a war on Wyoming’s ranchers, our farmers and our energy industry” (Okay, I'll admit I don't have a clue what she's talking about here, though I do at least know that it was her father who held secret, closed-door meetings with the heads of the energy industry that probably did more to negatively impact energy policy than anything in recent memory.)
For that matter, Dick Cheney also importantly launched a war on...well, Iraq. And Afghanistan. Actual wars, wildly unpopular wars which Liz Cheney worked hard to support from her position in the government. So, you'd think she might want to be careful about flinging out charges of people waging fake wars.
When Liz Cheney worked in the government, she oversaw a low-level unit in the State Department that was one of eight bureaus that reported to the Under Secretary for Political Affairs. Who was one of six Under Secretaries. More to the point, Ms. Cheney's group was reported to be studying how war could be covertly escalated in Syria and Iran. Happily, it was disbanded.
All the more reason, though, she might want to be careful about talking about waging wars.
But then, I've always felt that Liz Cheney should be careful talking about anything. To tie down her roots in Wyoming, she said that her family moved there "in search of religious freedom." Apparently they didn't realize it existed everywhere in the United States under the Constitution. Or she doesn't realize it.
I must admit, I'm a little surprised about Ms. Cheney's announcement. I expected her to say that she had headed a search committee to find someone to run for the office, and the committee decided that she was the best candidate. Hey, it worked for her dad.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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