Cheney: Prisoner to His Friendly Confines

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In baseball, Wrigley Field in Chicago is referred to as the "friendly confines" for its cozy atmosphere and home run alley for the locals.

In politics, it is Fox News for Vice President Cheney for softball interviews and a surefire way to avoid any real grilling.

Cheney's latest trip to Fox's friendly studio was to defend the right to spy on American citizens in the name of national security.

The Cheney view of the world is always a sinister one. Probably the most unpopular figure in the Bush administration, Cheney is eager to hide behind the rationale that everyone is a suspected plotter against the Republic. He has at least been consistent on this point.

Since the war began over four long years ago, Cheney has made numerous trips to Fox TV to try to explain his or the president's actions. The record of deception and dissembling is not a pretty picture.

To be sure, Cheney has strayed now and then to Meet the Press or other venues where the questions get a little rougher. But Fox is his favorite, where the slogan "fair and balanced" news is a joke. 

Even when traveling, Cheney's advance team is instructed to have the TV sets on Fox. Goodness, Cheney should not be exposed to any conflicting view!

At the funeral for his former boss, President Gerald Ford, Cheney had to endure still another arrow. The Washington Post interview with the aging Ford, published just after his death, spelled out his view that Cheney and others were wrong in the manner of justifying the war. The article should have waited until Ford was buried, but the publication had to enrage Cheney and his outspoken wife, Lynne.

Those of us who covered Ford's 29 months in office in the mid-1970s are still trying to figure the change in Cheney. A once amiable and more open chief of staff in the White House has become a secretive, cold operative in the same building.

Historians will have a difficult time answering the question of this Jekyll and Hyde persona.