Mr. Dick, the Venomous Toad, Comes Out of Hiding and Acts Tough While Surrounded by Guards

So they cleaned up Mr. Toad last night, powdered him down real thoroughly so none of his slime would reflect the lights and cause glare, tapped a tiny bit of botox into the left side of his lip so he wouldn't sneer quite as much as usual, and generally did a really good job making him look almost human, kind of like a dumbed-down version of Alistair Crowley (although the similarity would be only in attitude.* While Crowley was the "Great Beast," we can't really give Cheney much more of a title than "The Big Toad.")

But just as he does every time he comes out of his hole and squints into full daylight, he slammed with the same old lies, distortions and intentional misunderstandings.

He told roaring Republican delegates at Madison Square Garden conference hall that John Kerry did not "appear to understand how the world has changed since 11 September 2001.

"He talks about leading a 'more sensitive war on terror,' as though al-Qaeda will be impressed with our softer side," the vice-president railed.

"Although he voted to authorise force against Saddam Hussein, he then decided he was opposed to the war, and voted against funding for our men and women in the field," Mr Cheney said.

"His back and forth reflects a habit of indecision, and sends a message of confusion."

Because, you see, only girlie men and wussies actually change their minds based on new information, and certainly Dick Cheney isn't "sensitive" to anything, not even the fact that the Iraqi campaign has touched off a seemingly unending world-wide war of hatred and chaos even as it is swirling around the toilet-bowl of history as a monumental blunder marked by death, destruction, and stupidity. No sir, no sensitive guys in OUR locker room.

It's the same old game -- twist the meaning of the opponent's words and then refute them.

But even though Dick the Toad is dumber, more craven -- hiding in caves and behind boardroom doors -- afraid to stand on his own without a bozo front man, there is, as I said, some common field he holds with The Great Beast. Everything he does and says seems to be absolutely consistent with one tiny part of what Crowley wrote in The Book of the Law:

We have nothing with the outcast and the unfit; let them die in their misery. Compassion is the vice of Kings; stamp down the wretched and the weak; this is the law of the strong; this is our law and the joy of the world.

I am of the snake that giveth Knowledge and Delight, and stir the hearts of men with drunkenness. To worship me take wine and strange drugs.... They shall not harm ye at all. It is a lie, this folly against self.... Be strong, Oh man! Lust, enjoy all things of sense and rapture ... the kings of the earth shall be kings forever; the slaves shall serve.

Them that seek to entrap thee, to overthrow thee, them attack without pity or quarter, and destroy them utterly.

I am unique and conqueror. I am not of the slaves that perish. Be they damned and dead! Amen.

To me, that sounds like our Toad's attitude down to the final "Amen." Of course, there are differences:

Crowley embraced "The Path of Blame" as the fastest, most direct way to enlightenment, while Dick the Toad embraces the path of "Don't Blame Me."

Crowley espoused the libertarian philosophy, "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law," while Dick and his minions are on the opposite side, insisting "Do what WE say shall be the whole of the law."

Then, of course, Alistair Crowley stood up and took responsibility for the things he did. Mr. Toad comes out and points to Monkey Boy.

And oh yeah, one more thing -- it really appeared to me, as the banner-waving slogan-chanting thousands in the hall were cheering him, that his condescending smile made it clear he was thinking, "What a bunch of suckers. I love 'em. Shovel any kind of shit in their direction and they eat it up yum yum and ask for more."

Or maybe that was just my opinion and I projected it onto him.

(By the way, Maureen Dowd has a lovely take on this crowd in todays's NY Times column, different than mine -- deeper, broader and -- gasp! -- even more sensitive.)


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