5 Depressing Thoughts to Usher in the Winter Solstice (Silver Lining Edition)

Depressing Thought: If the universe keeps expanding as scientists claim it will, someday our solar system will be so isolated that the night sky will only hold the moon, Venus, Mars, and Jupiter.

Silver Lining: We’ll all be dead.

Tides HotelDepressing Thought: The Arctic is melting at rates unprecedented in the history of mankind.

Silver Lining: Future oceanfront lots in Branchville, SC are going for a song!

Depressing Thought: I weigh more now than I ever have in my entire life.

Silver Lining: The increased fat might help me survive future famines caused by global warming.

photograph by Gerry Pacher

photograph by Gerry Pacher

Depressing Thought: Because of Obama’s establishing diplomatic relations with Cuba, I missed my chance to visit Havana in all of its quaint, frozen-’50’s shabby grandeur.

Silver Lining: Cuban children may soon be able to eat meat on a regular basis.

Depressing Thought: Warren Zevon will never make another record.

Silver Lining: Neither will The Ray Conniff singers.

Ray Conniff in 1979

Ray Conniff in 1979

Dick Cheney, Hunter S Thompson, and Warren Zevon Walk into an Enhanced Interrogation Station

Cheney's angry Elvis imitation

Cheney’s angry Elvis imitation

Well, this isn’t exactly news, but to say that Dick Cheney lacks empathy is to say Christopher Walken isn’t warm and fuzzy or that no one is likely to confuse Michelle Obama with Ann Coulter. Sunday on Meet the Press, Cheney couldn’t even bring himself to express remorse over the well-documented torturing of innocents when he was in charge post 9/11. I’ll hand the metaphoric mike over to Andrew Sullivan:

He was then asked about the 26 people whom the CIA admits were tortured by mistake. One of them was even frozen to death. A sane and rational and decent human being, who presided over the program that did this, might say: “The decision to torture was an extremely agonizing one, but I still believe defensible. But of course the torture of innocent people is horrifying. I deeply regret the chaos and amateurism of the program in its early phases.”

So what did Cheney actually say? When confronted with the instance of Rahman Gul, the individual tortured to death, Todd asked what the US owed these torture victims. Cheney actually said this:

The problem I have is with all the folks we did release who ended up on the battlefield … I have no problem [with torturing innocent people] as long as we achieved our objective.

Cheney makes Orwell’s Big Brother seem like a straight-shooter by comparison. He calls “water boarding” and “rectal hydration” “enhanced interrogation.”

Warren Zevon and Hunter S Thompson

Warren Zevon and Hunter S Thompson

On Meet the Press, reeking of hubris, he exhibited the same stiff-bodied surety he displayed when assuring the American people that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction and that we’d be greeted as liberators. As my main man Hamlet is wont to say round about Act 3, Scene 4, line 82: “O shame where is thy blush?”

Well, obviously, Dick Cheney has no shame, and my fantasy of his being prosecuted is about as likely to happen as the Carolina Panthers winning this year’s Super Bowl or Hunter S Thompson and Warren Zevon rising from the dead to perform some rectal hydration enhanced interrogation on Cheney himself.

What’s that word W liked so much?  Oh yeah, evildoer.