Despite the anxieties — and outright anger — expressed during the Republicans’ nearly two-hour exchange with Cheney and the other White House officials, lawmakers remained respectful enough to give the vice president two standing ovations.
I was looking back again at the pics from last week’s White House economic peacock show.
Most of the images that went out on the newswires were taken from the ends of the table, focusing –obviously — on Bush’s side. This Getty shot, which I found at the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, does offers a different orientation. The tendency though is to read it vertically, top to bottom, still placing most weight on Bush’s side of the table.
It’s that disproportionate weighting, though, which led me back. …You see, another picture that stuck in my mind last week was a newswire shot of Dick Cheney at the Capitol seeming to hightail it out of the building just before the bailout vote. It was that shot which got me thinking about who has really been pulling the strings in the Administration, starting wars, poisoning the Justice Department, wishing ill on the polar bears, etc. Even more, however, its been Cheney from day one who has been the Administration’s liaison with Congress, particularly the Republican caucus.
The quote above, by the way, came out of a Politico article last week describing Cheney’s attempt, last Tuesday, to push the bailout bill with Republican Congress members. Apparently, they gave him an earful, one member describing the meeting as “a bloodbath” and “an unmitigated disaster.” Still, however (Cheney having a brilliant ability to keep a low profile), the man managed to walk away with two standing ovations?
I think there is another way of looking at this picture which, true to this dying administration, says less about politics than it does about fealty. That view simply involves reading the picture, and the center of power, starting from our side, with President Cheney holding court between former Goldman Sach CEO, Hank Paulson (left) and former Goldman Sachs executive Josh Bolton (right) who might as well be Dick’s Chief-of Staff rather than Bush’s.
From this perspective — with McCain in particular seeming to look in Cheney’s direction — we get a much better picture of not just the true White House power structure, but also whose head should really be first on the chopping block for the country’s horrible demise.
(image: Tim Sloan/Getty. September 25, 2008. White House in Washington, DC)