Regarding Vice President Dick Cheney’s Invitation to Speak at
By Scott Bradley
It has been widely reported that the White House called Brigham Young University in January and offered to have Vice President Dick Cheney speak at BYU's April Commencement exercises. At a time when national opinion polls indicate that the popularity of White House policies hover near record lows, and there are almost daily revelations of questionable behavior by people closest to the highest political office of the land, this timely “offer” should come as no surprise. It would seem appropriate to even the most naive observer that a squeaky clean audience with a well-earned reputation for civility would be a marvelous place to attempt to repair one’s tarnished reputation and appear to have the accolades of an organization which is arguably (at least in Utah, if not nationally) as politically pure as an organization can be.
Brigham Young University is wholly-owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Except where “moral issues” are at stake, such as matters pertaining to marriage, family, gambling, etc., the Church has meticulously guarded its political neutrality, and has gone to great lengths to avoid even the appearance of political activism. Statements are read from Church pulpits each election time regarding the duty of members to participate in the election process; and Church scriptures admonish members to seek “good and wise and honest” individuals to fulfill public office, and even seek to preserve the United States Constitution, but official Church endorsement of political parties and individuals is absolutely eschewed by Church leadership.
It would appear that The White House, and the Vice President, are guilty of pulling a “political fast one.” They want a forum to promote their image, and bask in the soft light of an institution which is both university and religion. One is caused to ask: “How does a church and a university gracefully decline an ‘offer’ from the most powerful political office of the land?” It would seem that they don’t easily turn such an offer down, and they publicly announce that they are “delighted to land a sitting vice president” as their speaker. Honor the office, but not the person? It is hard to imagine a broad spectrum of the public making that distinction!
It will likely appear to most people that the presence of Vice President Cheney on the Commencement dais will be an endorsement of the man, the Administration, and the national policies which have been increasingly repudiated by a Nation which has grown tired of a broad spectrum of “dead end streets” and outright un-constitutional actions.
For many decades, Mr. Cheney has held powerful positions at the National level. He has wielded power in the Nixon, Ford, Bush Sr., and now the Bush Jr. Administrations. He also served for many years as a congressman from Wyoming. He has been, perhaps, the central architect of many broad ranging policies which will affect the lives of generations of Americans yet unborn.
Following is a brief synopsis of Vice President Cheney’s “lifetime achievements:”
1. During the Nixon Administration, Donald Rumsfeld (ultimately two-time US Secretary of Defense) brought Cheney to the Office of Economic Opportunity (a national welfare delivery organization).
2. When Nixon resigned in disgrace, his replacement, Gerald Ford embraced Rumsfeld as his Chief of Staff. Cheney served in Rumsfeld’s organization.
3. When Rumsfeld was made Ford’s Secretary of Defense a year later, Cheney became Ford’s Chief of Staff.
4. In 1978, Cheney was elected as Wyoming’s congressman. He held that position for 11 years.
5. In 1982, while Wyoming’s congressman, Cheney joined the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). Over the years, Cheney rose through the ranks of the CFR to become a director of the organization.
[Following World War I, the world was devastated, and war-weary. The nations of the world were desperate for a permanent solution and peace. US President Woodrow Wilson and his alter-ego, “Col.” Edward Mandel House, drew up a plan which would create a world body which would be the foundation of a socialistic world government. They called it “The League of Nations.” At the Versailles Treaty negotiations, they gleefully presented it as the solution to all future world problems. Upon the return of Wilson and House to the United States, wise patriots in the United States Senate refused to turn their back on their oath to uphold the United States Constitution. They saw that the new league and treaty would subvert the sovereignty of the United States, and refused to ratify it.
Wilson and House were heartbroken. In response to the action of the Senate, House and others created an organization in New York City called the “Council on Foreign Relations” which was to seek to bring about the ultimate creation of another internationalist organization which would fulfill the role that had been envisioned for the League of Nations.
Since that time, the Council on Foreign Relations, or CFR, has worked tirelessly to that end. Today, its members, though only about 4,000 strong, fill a very high percentage of key government positions at the national level and state level, as well as pivotal positions in the media, business, and education.
In a speech which he delivered before the CFR on 15 February 2002, Cheney admitted that he avoided mentioning his CFR ties to his Wyoming voters, saying:
“...it’s good to be back at the Council on Foreign Relations. As Pete mentioned, I have been a member for a long time, and was actually Director for some period of time. I never mentioned that when I was campaigning for reelection back home in Wyoming.”]
6. In 1989 Cheney left Congress to become Bush Sr.’s Secretary of Defense. In this capacity, he oversaw both the invasion of Panama to capture the former CIA operative who led the country, and the first Iraq war against Saddam Hussein (another former recipient of US Taxpayer assistance who had been assured by a US Ambassador that his invasion of Kuwait would be ignored by the United States).
7. In 1993, at the close of Bush 1’s Presidency, Cheney became CEO of the Halliburton Company, fostering many internationalist projects which were funded by US Taxpayers.
8. In 2001, Cheney became Vice President of the United States.
9. As Vice President, Cheney functioned as one of the primary administration “mouth-pieces” regarding “intelligence” (which was ultimately proven through such official inquiries as the US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence’s “Report on the US Intelligence Community’s Prewar Intelligence Assessments on Iraq” and the “9/11Commission Report” to be without a shred of truth) that Iraq held weapons of mass destruction (WMD), that Iraq was a clear and present danger to the United States, that Iraq had collaborated with al-Qaeda and participated in the dastardly 11 September 2001 attack on the United States, and that Iraq was an active terrorist state which acted against the United States. There is growing evidence that Cheney pressured the CIA for reports that there was a much stronger Iraqi terror network connection than actually existed.
Based upon these false pretenses, in October 2002 the Administration wrangled H. J. Resolution 114 from the Congress. That Resolution un-Constitutionally “delegated” to the President the power to decide if the Nation was to go to war against Iraq. As justification for that resolution, the Congress invoked the authority of the United Nation 21 times, and mentioned 15 United Nations resolutions.
Now that Saddam Hussein’s regime has been conquered, Saddam executed, and all excuses for war have been proven false, America is embroiled in an unending Iraqi civil war, is the focus of every group who now has an excuse to hate us, and is providing tens of thousands of brave American personnel as targets as we now “nation-build” Iraq with the lives, fortune, and sacred honor of the Nation.
10. The recent trial of Lewis “Scooter” Libby, Cheney’s former Chief of Staff, has implicated Cheney in the exposure of Valerie Plame’s classified position with the CIA.