Yesterday I found myself standing in twenty inches of snow on a street in Syracuse, New York standing next to none other than the Vice President of the United States, Dick Cheney. At first I figured it had to be someone else, but then I noticed he was surreptitiously holding a disposable propane lighter under his nose every couple of minutes, no flame on mind you, just sniffing the gas, so I knew.
" Why do you that, Mr. Vice President?" I asked.
"Reminds me of money." he replied, " And please, call me Dick."
"I always do," I assured him, " By the way, what are you doing here in Syracuse?"
" Well, they wanted me in an undisclosed location. Well, you can't get much more undisclosed than this.", he said sweeping his arms across the snow covered street. I nodded.
"Hey, Dick, I saw you were in the news again today. Your guys are still refusing to give out your Energy Task Force information. Now the Dept. of Justice is asking the Supreme Court to make you do it. What's that all about?"
"Ahh", he said, looking disgusted, " Ashcroft just can't keep his boys in line, that's all. Damn lawyers think they gotta practice law or something. Anyway, they can't see the bigger picture. It's about confidentiality and protecting my assets."
"Assets?" My ears perked up. I thought I had him.
"Informationally speaking, I mean.", he replied. My ears drooped. " You see, we have to keep our sources secret, otherwise they may get into trouble somehow."
"Trouble?" My ears were up again.
"With their wives.", he replied, smiling slyly, " They get angry when these guys work for free." Ears down again. This guy was good.
" But your Administration just this summer released the name of a covert CIA agent. How do you justify doing that but keeping your energy advisors secret?"
" Aw, nobody cares about the CIA. They just keep sending over a bunch of reports that no one ever reads. We don't need them. Besides, we get our information from a much more respected source."
" What's that?"
" Fox News."