Here's something you don't see very often—a defense of Dick Cheney. Darth Vader, it turns out, is really a cuddly and misunderstood human being.
I can understand that avenues of expression might be limited today for a Bush/Rumsfeld speechwriter, so it shouldn't be too surprising that the author has turned to writing science fiction.
Latimer says Cheney's influence on Bush and Bush's policies has been grossly exaggerated. I don't know which image is scarier—Dick Cheney as the puppetmaster of W, or a White House where it wasn't just Dick Cheney but all those others around Bush who had those horrible ideas.
I don't pretend to know which scenario is closer to the truth. Only Bob Woodward knows for sure.
I was intrigued by the assertion that Cheney had "a rather unusual medical procedure on his heart, a procedure that not only has prolonged his life but apparently left him without a pulse—a source of black humor to his legion of critics." Back during the Good Old Days when we had Dick Cheney to kick around, I was told by a high official of the federal plutocracy—who was in a position to know—that the vice president had all sorts of hardware in him that was experimental and not yet approved for public use. (I'm tempted to say, "not yet approved for use in humans.") As this person explained to me, "If the Vice President of the United States, especially one as powerful as Cheney, tells the FDA 'I want this,' they're not going to say 'you can't have it.'"
I did some Googling and found that "the rather unusual medical procedure" that results in no pulse is a Left Ventricular Assist Device. Lots of info on it on the Internet, so I guess other patients besides Cheney have one, and this is not one of the unapproved procedures. Which makes me wonder what other hardware is inside Darth Vader's body.