'Sensitive compartmented information'
WaPo is running a big multi-part series
on Dick Cheney. Here'e the first installment
. ... Some of the material is old. But some is fresh. I didn't know that one of Cheney's first acts on Sept. 11, 2001 -- not after Sept. 11 -- was to convene lawyers to define the president's 'extraordinary powers.' That was his first primary instinct: consolidate government power. ... I know I can be accused of political psychobabble by harping on Cheney and Rumsfeld's experiences in the Nixon and Ford administrations. But they really do come across as being scarred by the brutal executive vs. legislative battles of that era. The first commentator out of the WaPo box had the same reaction:
The media and elected officials have known for 6 years about Cheney's corruption in the White House. This is right from the Nixon play book and Cheney was trained during the Watergate years.
Don't agree with everything the commentator says. But those sentences clicked. Then there's the other question I keep asking myself: Will we ever see another vice president like Dick Cheney? The third commentator provides a partial answer:
The reason Cheney is able to get away with his unprecedented power-grab is not because of some deep, dark and mysterious knowledge of the workings of bureaucracy. It's because Bush, the cipher, let's him. It's as simple as that.
Most vice president candidates are picked to balance out a ticket. Cheney was picked primarily to act as a trusted confidante and mentor. I doubt we'll see another one like him for a while. Or at least I hope not. ... FYI: I'm far from the first to notice the neo-Nixonite traits of the admintration. PBS
have, among many others, noted it before. It just took me longer to appreciate it. ... FYI II: The WaPo story has another example of John Ashcroft trying to fend off the clowns.