Our friend  Backyard Conservative posts on the Chicago Tribune’s cartoon the other day depicting Vice President Dick Cheney shooting the Bill of Rights. This from a newspaper that refuses to print the Muhammad cartoons.

Backyard Connservative comments on the Trib’s sudden newfound respect for the Bill of Rights:

“As I recall the Tribune wrote a ringing endorsement of Janet Reno’s goons rushing into a home in the dead of night to snatch a terrified Elian Gonzalez and send him back to Cuba. So much for the 4th amendment there. Apparently we can’t go after terrorists in our country, only little boys who want to live here.”

Unfortunately, I couldn’t find the Cheney cartoon on the Trib’s website. But I did find some wild examples of Cheney-mania from a press in a royal snit because it doesn’t have a constitutional right to be notified immediately of an accident on private property. (You say the press was alerted by Cheney’s hostess, on whose land, after all, the accidental shooting occurred? Oh, we don’t mean some crummy Corpus Christi newspaper. We mean us, the swaggering posturers of Big Media.)

Here’s the Trib’s Clarence Page, bristling with self-righteous fury:

“In the meantime, [Cheney’s] penchant for secrecy will only encourage others to suspect the worst–and find something else to do, I am sure, when he invites them to go quail hunting.

“The danger posed by Cheney’s posture is not to the right of the press to snoop into the vice president’s personal life, but to our constitutional system of checks and balances. The founding fathers, skeptical of vesting too much power in one branch of government even during wartime, set up Congress and the courts to hold the executive branch accountable. Cheney is hardly the first strong leader in the executive branch to try to expand his turf of unchecked power. It’s up to the rest of us, including Congress and the courts, to decide whether we’re going to let him get away with it.”

Yes, the very foundations of our constitution are stake from Cheney’s 14-hour delay.

And here’s Molly Ivins:

“Of course the Cheney shooting was an accident.

“But is it an accident if your home and your life are destroyed by the flood following a hurricane? Especially if the flood was caused by failed levees, a government responsibility?

“Is it an accident if you are born with a clubfoot and your parents are too poor to pay for the operation to fix it? Is there any societal responsibility in such a case?

“Is it an accident when your manufacturing job gets shipped overseas and all you can find to replace it is a low-wage job at the big-box store with no health insurance, and your kid breaks his leg, and you can’t pay the bill, so you have to declare bankruptcy under a new law that leaves you broke for good, with no chance of ever getting out of debt? Or was all of that caused by deliberate government policy?”

Is it an accident, Molly, that you’ve just won the day’s prize for most non sequiturs in a row?