We all know now that Cheney was the puppet master running the government behind the mask of President-in-name-only, George W. Bush, and was primarily responsible for the Iraq War, that boondoggle of military aggression that is the partial reason why the economy is in such a funk these last few years. He was the lead salesman for the idea that we should attack Iraq preemptively because he clearly had Weapons of Mass Destruction. If you haven’t seen Rachel Maddow’s documentary, Hubris, you owe it to yourself to watch it. It’s only an hour of your time. Over 4000 American soldiers (not to mention those from other countries) died as a result. Over 30,000 wounded, many of them with life altering injuries. Probably over 100,000 Iraqis killed, with millions wounded or displaced from their homes. All because of Cheney’s lie.
This recent book by one of my favorite news commentators is subtitled The Unmooring of American Military Power. With the title and subtitle, you can get a good idea of what the thesis of the book is. Think of the Constitution as the dock, with the US Ship of State tied up securely to it. The lines tying the ship to the dock are the laws of the United States, the executive, legislative and judicial branches that create, administer and enforce those laws, and the people that work in those branches of government. Now, consider that two, sometimes all three, branches, or lines, have become frayed and worn, even purposely cut, to the point that they stretch and occasionally snap, leaving the ship to drift away from the dock, completely unmoored to land, subject to the vagaries of currents. And we have forgotten why we tied the ship to the dock in the first place.