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Fox News’ Dick Cheney Infomercial That Just Happens To Swipe At President Obama

Reported by Ellen - August 29, 2011 -

In advance of Dick Cheney’s memoirs coming out, Fox News devoted an entire hour showcasing Cheney recently (8/19/11). Need I say there were rose-colored glasses for Cheney? And yet somehow host Bret Baier managed to work in some swipes at President Obama. The special was called “Dick Cheney Revealed” but it should have been called “Dick Cheney Touched Up.”

Some examples:

Dick Cheney’s Five Deferments From Military Service:

As Katharine Q. Seelye laid out in a 2004 New York Times article, “hawk” Cheney avoided the draft via four student deferments and one “hardship” deferment because his wife was pregnant. Cheney said in 1989, "I had other priorities in the '60s than military service." Although Cheney attributed his six-year college education to poor grades and having to work while in school – rather than avoiding the draft – Seelye noted that his fifth deferment, because his wife was pregnant, came just as the military decided to draft married men without children.

On Oct. 6, 1965, the Selective Service lifted its ban against drafting married men who had no children. Nine months and two days later, Mr. Cheney's first daughter, Elizabeth, was born. On Jan. 19, 1966, when his wife was about 10 weeks pregnant, Mr. Cheney applied for 3-A status, the "hardship" exemption, which excluded men with children or dependent parents. It was granted.

But Baier glossed over this inconvenient detail in Cheney’s life and framed it as a “he said/she said” matter, saying, “During the sixties, while Viet Nam raged, he received five draft deferments, something later detractors were quick to note.”

Then Baier quickly moved on, saying, “Back in school, his academic research focused on the mechanics of elections and voting patterns.”

September 11, 2001:

Baier said, “If anyone was prepared for such a shattering crisis, it was Dick Cheney.”

No mention, of course, of the fact that the 9/11 Commission found the attacks could have and should have been prevented.

The Iraq War:

Baier also helped justify the Iraq war, saying:

The administration set its sights on Iraq, where a dangerous foe was believed to be building weapons of mass destruction, harboring terrorists and violating U.N. sanctions.

Baier also played a clip of Cheney saying, “There is no doubt” Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. Instead of challenging Cheney on that, Baier asked him, “What changed?” with regard to Cheney’s stance on the first Gulf War when he had said, as Baier put it, “We should not spill American blood to force Saddam from power.”

"Enhanced Interrogations" And The Patriot Act:

Torture and spying on Americans? Baier euphemistically described them as “non-military measures to protect America from further terrorist attacks.”

The only thing Baier seemed to think worth focusing on, was the “extraordinary assertion of presidential powers, aggressively pushed by Vice President Cheney and his staff.”

Baier did later say, “Cheney’s critics increasingly depicted him as a secretive schemer who was using the war as an excuse to shred the Constitution.” But he avoided delving into those criticisms and, instead, focused on Cheney’s political role – and then what George W. Bush called Cheney's “noble” offer to step aside in 2004.

Gratuitous Swipes at President Obama:

What Fox News special would be complete without attacking President Obama? Teasing an upcoming segment, Baier said, “President Bush largely stayed silent while President Obama blamed his administration for the country’s ills. Dick Cheney? Not so much.” After the break, Baier said, “Even after he took office, President Barack Obama continued to use his predecessor as a punching bag."

You probably get the picture.

Sean Hannity will be hosting Cheney on Tuesday for a discussion Fox News describes as and "exclusive where Cheney opens up on President Obama’s policies and his thoughts about the killing of Usama bin Laden."

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