Media

Tabloid Exclusives on David Paterson and Dick Cheney

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What’s that in the air? Is it “nostalgia” for the bad old days? The New York Post reports that we’re headed for the “worst [budget] cri$is since 1970s.” You know it’s bad because the paper could only afford one dollar-sign “S” for the front page. The “Exclusive” news the Post has is that Gov. Paterson will address the state sometime this week about the upcoming budget crunch, perhaps as early as tomorrow night.

The drastic measures the state may take include layoffs for state workers, even more cuts in state services and curbing state spending beyond the 3.3% cuts ordered in spring. Today Paterson is meeting with economist Joseph Stiglitz, who once helmed the World Bank. Stiglitz has said that the current world financial climate is the worst since the Great Depression.

This depressing news is enough for the Post to launch into a full-on walk down memory lane. The headline for the story on page 7 is a puntastic “THAT ’70S WOE IN RERUN,” and the accompanying photos include one of Paterson and another of a 1975 Post front page about that decade’s fiscal crisis. The images of financial ruin don’t end there, though. On page 21 is the story, “A TOUCH OF CRASH,” which looks at how current fashion is a throwback to the Great Depression era: newsboy caps, loose-fitting pants and pinstriped vests.

Living in the more recent past is Vice President Dick Cheney, whose outrageous security demands have earned him a “thanks, but no thanks” for agreeing to appear at the Disabled American Veterans convention next month in Las Vegas. The Daily News reports that the security protocol for the veep to speak at the convention includes a directive that the audience be sequestered for two hours before Cheney even appears. This normally would not be a problem except that there are no restrooms in the secure area. The executive director of Disabled American Veterans told Cheney’s handlers “it just wasn’t acceptable.”

The News has a blast with this story. It gives the paper an excuse to use one of the unflattering “HULK SMASH” photos of Cheney that help to illustrate just what kind of a grouch he is. The paper lays it on thick with the descriptions of the veterans to bring home just how ridiculous these “security” demands are:

“Many of the vets are elderly and left pieces of themselves on foreign battlefields since World War II, and others were crippled by recent service in Iraq and Afghanistan. For health reasons, many can’t be stuck in a room for hours.”

There are a couple of mentions of veterans having to get up at the crack of dawn, attach their prosthetic limbs and then wait and wait for Cheney to speak. Once Cheney began to address the crowd, no one would be allowed to leave.

The entire ordeal is outrageous, especially when it’s revealed that the President speaks at events this large and does not have the same stringent requirements. Cheney has obviously spent too much time in his bunker. At this point, lame-duck stories like this inspire eye-rolls from just about anyone. At least Barack Obama and John McCain will address the veterans next month, and they’ll probably allow potty breaks.

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