So at first I thought, riiiiight ...
The Bush White House, on its last night in power, announces that Vice President Dick Cheney pulled a muscle in his back while moving boxes. He'll be in a wheelchair for the Obama inauguration.
Dick Cheney -- a man with a notoriously bad ticker -- is moving boxes? Don't those people have people to do all that menial schlepping for them?
And then I thought, what kind of boxes would be so important that the almost-ex-vice president would be moving them himself?
And then I thought ... oh, those kinds of boxes. Boxes full of papers that he doesn't want anyone else to see, ever. Boxes destined for his home shredder. That would be, uh, back in Wyoming?
A week before Christmas -- which was about three months after a federal judge ordered Cheney's office to preserve all his official records -- Cheney's lawyers were back in court, blathering that only the vice president can decide which records from his eight years in office should, by law, be handed over to the National Archives by ... oh, what's that deadline again? Oh yes -- noon on Tuesday, when he ceases to be the vice president. The same date when, according to the Associated Press story, Cheney could be ''potentially taking millions of records that might otherwise become public.''
Cheney's being sued by a public watchdog group under a 30-year-old law requiring the departing president and vice president to hand over most of their records to the National Archives. Cheney's essentially blown raspberries at the law, and its enforcers. After some National Archives staff tried to conduct a routine inspection of Cheney's papers several years ago or so, his staff reported tried to get that inspection unit abolished.
Cheney will be in a wheelchair for only a couple of days, the White House said. Can someone please frisk him as he rolls out of the White House and into private life? Remember, Oliver North's secretary Fawn Hall eluded NSC investigators by smuggling highly classified documents out of her boss' office -- in her boots.