Cheney Was Shopping For A Mansion While Disaster Struck

Apparently, Condi Rice wasn't the only one who decided that the worst natural disaster in our country's history was the perfect time to go shopping. Rice, of course, was spotted on Fifth Avenue paying reportedly thousands of dollars on a pair of Ferragamo shoes. Cheney stayed on vacation while Hurricane Katrina struck. He stayed on vacation on Monday and Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursday and Friday and he was finally spotted back in Washington on Saturday. This was such a gross dereliction of duty that even liberal bloggers struggled for a reasonable explanation. Surely Cheney was deathly ill and simply incapable of doing what any decent human being would do during such a terrible disaster? Nope. Maureen Dowd says Cheney was house-hunting:
The vice president has at long last lumbered back from a Wyoming vacation, and, reportedly, from shopping for a $2.9 million waterfront estate in St. Michael's, a retreat in the Chesapeake Bay where Rummy has a weekend home, where "Wedding Crashers" was filmed and where rich lobbyists hunt.
Dick Cheney was SHOPPING FOR A MANSION DURING THE WORST NATURAL DISASTER IN OUR NATION'S HISTORY. Unbelievable. If this isn't the first question for any government official who gives a statement to the press until we get some answers, the MSM should just pack up and go home. I now apologize for bending backwards to assume Cheney was ill -- perhaps from his weak heart -- and offering my heartfelt thoughts for his family while insisting he'd have to step down. I made the rookie mistake of assuming Cheney had a heart.

NOTE: Now what do I say? The Washington Post did a story on Cheney house hunting on Chesapeake Bay on Monday, a week after the hurricane struck. It quoted people saying the deal would close yesterday or today. How could The Washington Post CONCEIVABLY do a light, fluffy article about Cheney buying a mansion when he was AWOL during the worst natural disaster in our nation's history? Why aren't they demanding to speak to Cheney? Why aren't they asking for a complete itinerary of everything he did last week while the waters were rising and people were dying? Why aren't they asking Cheney about the grotesque contrast of him buying a mansion after hundreds of thousands of people watched their entire lives wash away and Cheney did nothing. NOTHING. How could the Washington Post run an article like this in this context? It seems there is no report of Cheney literally shopping for his home last week, but who knows? The Washington Post didn't ask and they used the facts to run a "cute" feature instead of recognizing his insulting refusal to get to work when this country needed him most. Write the Washington Post with your opinion of them running a story like this two days after Cheney FINALLY was spotted at the White House and let them know what questions you want answered. (external - login to view)
Bush,Ceney,Rice 3 of the most "powrful" "important" government officials and they do squat, go shopping and house hunting.
Yes,but now he can pick up some prime Louisiana Beachfront property for a mere song
Jo Canadian
Vanni Fucci
Quote: Originally Posted by missile

Yes,but now he can pick up some prime Louisiana Beachfront property for a mere song

Actually, I've been giving this a bit of thought...

What are the chances that cronies of the Bush/Cheney gang would Eminent Domain peoples' properties from them at market value?

You build a nice new shipping yard, or some such for not more than a pittance...
I can see that as a possibility First thing will be the closure of the city area due to the contamination of the water supply and no resident will be welcomed back.
Reverend Blair
The smart money is on them building casinos, then disneyfying Mardi Gras. Wave goodbye to boobies and beads.
I see some of the refineries are back up already.Oil is Priority No.1
Washington Post article. You have to register. (external - login to view)


Where the Rumsfelds Retreat, The Cheneys Soon Could Follow

By Dan Morse
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, September 5, 2005; Page B01

ST. MICHAELS, Md. -- They've grown used to having a secretary of defense in their midst -- the way his weekend estate is tucked behind a bend in the road, how he takes casual walks tailed by dark SUVs. Now, residents of this Eastern Shore retreat are preparing for someone even bigger to buy a house down the road: the vice president.

"I'd heard it was going to close either Tuesday or Wednesday of this week," Carroll Hurley, a funeral home owner, said Saturday, seated with his breakfast gang at the Carpenter Street saloon and restaurant.

Is Vice President Cheney house hunting?
Is Vice President Cheney house hunting? (Manuel Balce Ceneta - AP)
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Whether it's true -- that Dick and Lynne Cheney are buying an estate here -- could not be confirmed. Those closest to the deal -- Cheney's office, the purported sellers, the listing agent -- aren't talking. Hurley admits he's not certain: "All I have is hearsay. It wouldn't stand up in court."

Still, a nosy visit here leaves a person with one of two possibilities: Either the Cheneys are coming or a lot of people have bad information. Police Chief Ed Henry -- who breakfasted along with Hurley -- even referred to the lot in question as "Cheney's house."

The house, listed at $2.9 million, backs up in spectacular fashion to an inlet of the Chesapeake Bay. "Right out by [Defense Secretary Donald H.] Rumsfeld's," said Charles Mangold Sr., whose Benson & Mangold agency brokers high-end estates in the area. "It's under contract, but he hasn't settled yet."

Reaction to the two men's presence is embedded into everyday conversation -- even as residents take pride in taking it all in stride. They tick off celebrities who have lived in or visited the area: Margaret Thatcher, Walter Cronkite, James Michener, Yasser Arafat and Vince Vaughan -- the latest during nearby filming of "Wedding Crashers."

Residents joke about the occasional helicopter overhead and what flavor Rumsfeld gets at Justine's Ice Cream parlor. One woman even drew a clear distinction -- pro-Rumsfeld, anti-Cheney.

"Cheney's a politician. He's connected with Bush," said Rhonda Lewis, 58, a bookkeeper at a bike shop in nearby Easton. She has always had a crush on Rumsfeld. "He is just adorable."

She thinks the defense secretary often looks stressed out on TV, and seeing him walk casually through St. Michaels in khakis is comforting. "Bush just dumped all the hard stuff on him," Lewis said.

At Albright's Gun Shop, a highly regarded draw for goose and duck hunters, a photo of the vice president hangs near the counter. "Best Wishes. Dick Cheney," says the autograph.

Near the photo, behind the counter, Jim Kohlhaus remembered a recent day when several security people walked into the store, followed by the vice president. "I'll be . . . ," Kohlhaus said. He recalled telling Cheney he voted for him twice, "and I finally get to shake your hand."

Cheney extended his hand, Kohlhaus said, and bought some shotgun shells.

Rumsfeld bought a weekend house in St. Michaels two years ago, reportedly for about $1.5 million. He gets generally good reviews here for his desire to blend in -- even if that means taking a walk with his wife, Joyce, down a rural stretch of road tailed by SUVs. Residents say he doesn't like to pose for pictures alone, preferring to ask people to stand next to him and have a brief chat.

Lori Cuthbert, who lives nearby, said she met the defense secretary at a neighborhood St. Patrick's Day party. She intends to invite the Rumsfelds to an upcoming barbecue -- despite the Kerry-Edwards bumper sticker on her Honda.

Sue Stockman, an artist who sells jewelry and mosaics, bears witness that different types of people blend together here. Her Volkswagen van parked in her driveway is painted with flowers and sports "Think Peace" and "It Takes a Village to Raise a Child" bumper stickers. She protested the war in Iraq before it started and describes herself as an "environmentalist, holistic thinker and a pacifist."

Stockman reported having a run-in with someone she suspects was part of Rumsfeld's security detail. They argued over the film "Fahrenheit 9/11" at the Blue Crab Coffee shop -- ending with her putting a hand on his shoulder, sending him Reiki energy healing and telling him she had to get going.

A short time later, the man showed up at her house and gave her a small book, Stockman said. She fetched it from inside her house. "The Meaning of Life" is filled with photographs of animals, bits of wisdom and an inscription from the former Marine asking Stockman to accept his apologies and the book "as a token of friendship."

Cheney seemingly has spent far less time here. He, his wife and the Rumsfelds did dine on April 16 at 208 Talbot, a high-end restaurant in central St. Michaels.

"Cheney had the lamb," said Deborah Miller, seated behind the hostess stand.

She knew something was up that day when security agents showed up in the afternoon to scout out the place. An attache of Cheney's then arrived, saying he'd prefer a table among the regular diners -- rather than in a back room. No one bothered their table, and the foursome couldn't have been more pleasant, Miller recalled. But she didn't know whether Cheney was buying a place.

And the owner of the house in question declined to comment, saying politely from the end of its long driveway that he didn't want to talk about anything.

The estate goes back to 1930 and was said to be built by one of Thomas Edison's daughters, according to Robert Snyder, the Coldwell Banker agent who is listing the property.

The nine-acre lot includes extensive gardens, ornamental pools and spectacular views of the water behind it. Deer and osprey can be seen.

Snyder, who is vice president of the St. Michaels town commission, declined to say when any deal might close and whether the Cheneys were going to move in. "It truly is a magnificent piece of property," he added.


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