Both the vice president and the deputy chief of staff, as it happens, owed their previous, lucrative jobs in the private sector to their relationships with the Armstrong family. Anne Armstrong, Katharine’s mother, was on the board of Halliburton that made Dick Cheney its chief executive officer. Tobin Armstrong, Katharine’s father, had financed Karl Rove & Co., Rove’s political consulting firm. Katharine herself is a lobbyist for Houston law firm Baker Botts, a major Texas power broker since it was founded in the 19th century by the family of James A. Baker III, the former secretary of state and close associate of George H.W. Bush's. … Katharine Armstrong is linked to two family fortunes — those of Armstrong and King — that include extensive corporate holdings in land, cattle, banking and oil. No one in Texas, except perhaps Baker, but certainly not latecomer George W. Bush, has a longer lineage in its political and economic elite. In 1983, Debrett’s Peerage Ltd., publisher of “Debrett’s Peerage and Baronetage,” printed “Debrett’s Texas Peerage,” featuring “the aristocrats of Texas,” with the King family noted as the “Royal Family of Ranching.” The King Ranch, founded by Richard King in 1857, is the largest in Texas, and its wealth was vastly augmented by the discovery of oil on its tracts, making the family a major shareholder of Exxon. The King Ranch is the model for Edna Ferber’s novel of Texas aristocracy, “Giant.” - Sydney Blumenthal
First, let me ask you something. Say you’ve gone hunting all day with your buddies, but in the end, after a beer or two, some heart medicine and God knows what else (I’m not kidding, only God really knows), you haul off and shoot a guy you’ve known for 30 years. What do you do, go out to dinner or go to the hospital with your friend?
Dick Cheney went out to dinner.
Oh, and say this friend whom you shot was wounded seriously, bleeding, maybe even unconscious, what then?
Why didn’t he get in the ambulance with his friend? There wasn’t enough room.
So did Cheney get in a car and drive to the hospital? No. He went out to dinner, back to the ranch.
What he didn’t do was go to the hospital with the guy he just shot. Shot in the heart, face, lung, liver, with the rest of the organs still pending. Al Franken even made this point tonight on MSNBC.
Now, about our little Dick Cheney field test…
First off, my husband went to find a 28 gauge shotgun in Las Vegas. He went to several top gun stores and they didn't even have the rounds. But he was able to talk to a guy who works in a store called American Shooter Supply, who had his own gun store in Chicago before he moved to Las Vegas. A 28 gauge shotgun is very uncommon around here. They’re just not popular in this town.
If you’re familiar with a 12 gauge shotgun, which is the standard bird hunting caliber, just to give you a point of reference, a 28 gauge is about the same as a 20 gauge (usually used by young hunters because it kicks less), which is about 30% smaller than a 12 gauge.
Taking our 12 gauge out to shoot, my husband verified that at 30 yards, the spread pattern is 3 feet. When the avid hunter in this
video shot the 28 gauge, he got around a 3 foot pattern at 30 yards as well. But as one gun and hunting expert said on MSNBC, it doesn't help much because of so many variables. Anyway…
Since the 28 gauge is smaller, with the same barrel length as the 12 gauge, it would have the same spread pattern, but with fewer pellets released, around 200 pellets, with number 7.5 birdshot, wihch is what Whittington and Cheney were reportedly using.
The next thing you have to consider is the information that was first released when we found out Dick Cheney had shot Mr. Whittington. We were first told that Whittington was hit with 200 pellets at 30 yards. We were also told he was hit in his face, neck and chest.
Now do the math, count out the inches. Mr. Whittington is around 6’2″ tall. Measuring from a man's forehead that is the same height, to his navel, is close to 2 foot. Today, Dr. Bernadine Healy stated that there are reports of Whittington also being hit in his lung and liver, which would be included in this two foot area.
Did you notice what you just read. Two foot area. Mr. Whittington had a two-foot spray of birdshot, including multiple pellets that penetrated his hunting jacket, a vest, a shirt, his skin, into his body, through his chest cavity, even his lungs and liver, in cold weather, and we learned
today, even penetrated his heart.
In the words of Dr. Healy, “He was shot in the heart.”
But again, Whittington's injuries encompassed a two foot blast area.
Additionally, when the story first broke, it was 200 pellets at 30 yards. However, now it’s about 30 yards” and the doctors won’t talk about the pellets, which one news source dropped down to 100 pellets. We finally got to a spread of between 6 – 200 pellets. It’s become a game of follow the changing facts.
At the beginning of all this, Dick Cheney also offered Ms. Armstrong as an important witness. Dick Cheney even felt it best that Armstrong break the story first, locally, which Dick Cheney still believes was the right move. However, now we learn that she actually thought Dick Cheney was the guy who was downed because the Secret Service went running in his direction to aid him. In other words, she didn’t see anything.
The real question is how, in cold weather, Cheney’s shot went through Mr. Whittington’s many layers of clothing, did all the damage it did, in only a two foot area of his body, when at 30 yards it would have been a 3 foot spread.
Something just isn’t right. I’ll give you our best guess. Dick Cheney was not 30 yards away, but closer to 15 yards away from Whittington when he shot him.
It’s really simple, if 200 pellets come out of a one-inch barrel and spread out to 3 foot at 30 yards, Whittington was probably half that distance to get hit with 200 pellets in a 2 foot area of his head, neck and torso, also his lungs and liver, especially considering that pellets penetrated his chest and lodged in his heart.
After being the first to doubt the truth of the 30 yard distance alibi earlier this week, we are now hearing from many experts, hunting and medical, who have the same questions we raised from the start. No one can be sure, but the critical mass of thinking points to closer to 15 yards or so.
One last thought, if Dick Cheney had been sober and in full control of his faculties, why didn’t he go to the hospital? Why didn’t he talk to the police immediately about the shooting? Why did he instead go out to dinner?
The answer is obvious.