No one is above the law. The President says so. The Vice President says so. Even the nation's top cop, Attorney General Gonzales, says so.
But when one of them gets their nuts in a jam the law they get is very different than the rest of us get.
When VP Dick plugged his hunting partner last weekend he got the Five Star law. Investigation closed. There was “no wrong doing.”
So much for those fabled Dudley Doright Texas Rangers. When it comes to a VIP like the VEEP, its “wham bam, thank you ma'am." justice.
But much remains unaswered.
* For starters, why was a bleeding and seriously wounded 78-year old man taken to the small Kingsville hospital by ambulance, over rough country roads, rather than flown by med-evac helicopter to the state of the art Corpus Christi hospital? You know if it had been Cheney shot that day he would have been med-evac'ed PDQ to Corpus Christi, not sent to a cow-town hospital 46 miles away.
Why did they send poor Harry to Kingsville? My guess: Cheney and his staff calculated that reporters wouldn't be hanging around the Kingsville hospital hoping for a scoop -- and they were right.
But poor Harry could have died on that drive. So what's worse than shooting your friend?
Answer: Having the press find out you shot your friend. (“Hey sorry about that Harry. But do try to bleed less. We're taking the scenic route to the hospital.”)
* Next I want the Texas cops to tell me how soon they'd like to eyeball me if I had just shot someone? You know, just to kinda sniff my breath, make me touch my nose with my eyes closed – that kinda “investigatin's” stuff. Okay, I'll take a stab at it... let's see.... LIKE IMMEDIATELY!
So, why did they let VP Dick chill for 14 hours before questioning him personally? My guess: it takes that long for the liver to finish flushing alcohol out of the system. If Dick had been falling down drunk the day of the shooting, 14 hours later he'd look, act and smell like Salt Lake City Mormon preacher.
* Then there's the way the Veep handled the media – which was to keep them in the dark for a long as humanly possible. They had to know the press would find out eventually. And when they did find out, that the press would be super pissed over being kept in the dark and made to (once again) look foolish. Cheney and his people had to know that holding back the news was only going to make the story bigger once it got out. So why were they willing to incur such a predictable wrath?
My guess; the alternative was worse. Turning the press loose before all the witnesses had been tutored on the alibi, and duly impressed by tales of woe that came to those who crossed the Veep, could result in a negligent homicide rap if Harry succumbed. Imagine what might have happened it reporters had gotten to some of those good ole boys before they were briefed:
“Yeah, we were doing a bit of drinkin'. Dick's a regular guy. You guys are making too much out of it. Stuff like thats happens all the time down here when the boys get together. I mean, it's not like he was fallin' down drunk or anything. Just a few brewskies to steady shootin' hand. You big city reporters would be better off if you got out and did little drinkin's and huntin' once in while.”
* Another mystery persists. I have more than a passing familiarity with shotguns. I never shot any friends but I did once dispatch as nasty pit bull with a shotgun a few years back. So, those of you who also understand how shotgun pellets expand at distance need only look at this accident scene report. The shot pattern clearly indicates that poor Harry was a lot closer to the Veep than the 90-100 feet being claimed. It looks to me as though he was more like 30 feet away, rather than 30 yards.
* Finally, 28-gauge shot won't deeply penetrate a human body at 30 yards. So how did a pellet make all the way through chest muscle and embed itself into poor Harry's heart? Not from 30 yards. No way. At that distance it might not have even made it into a frail quail's ticker.
So, where is Rep. Dan “Watermelon Man” Burton now. You might remember that it was this GOP nut who claimed that Vince Foster did not shoot himself, but was murdered. He knew this because he had conducted tests in his own backyard, shooting a watermelon with same caliber gun found at Foster's side. How's about trying that little test now with a 28-gauge loaded with bird shot. Watermelons at 30 yards...
Oh well, just keep repeating, “No one is above the law. No one is above the law. No one is above the law.”
Who knows, it might even become true again.