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Tue Sep 29, 2015, 08:13 PM

Nixon: Past & President

I just had my oldest son order me two books on Nixon and Watergate. The first one is “The Nixon Tapes: 1973,” by Douglas Brinkley. It’s the second of his series of White House transcripts (last year’s 759-page book covered the years 1971-72). The second is Geoff Sheppard’s “The Real Watergate Scandal: Collusion, Conspiracy, and the Plot that Brought Nixon Down.” Sheppard is a former Nixon staffer and attorney who presents a well-documented case that there was misconduct involving the judge of the Watergate defendant’s trial, and prosecutors involved in the cases.

As winter approaches, I always try to stock up on good reading material. Among my interests are the consecutive presidencies of Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon. Like many of my generation, I liked JFK, and still wonder how different the world might be had he lived to serve two terms (and, of course, wonder the same about RFK); find LBJ a contradiction -- half-good, per the Great Society, and half-terrible, per Vietnam; and find Nixon wholly repulsive, a man who threatened the very foundations of our constitutional democracy.

Yet, for a variety of reasons, I find both LBJ and Nixon to be fascinating characters. They were, perhaps not coincidentally, the only two modern presidents who suffered complete breakdowns while in office. In that time period, common folk politely referred to such things as “nervous breakdowns,” yet as has been well-documented, both men had on-going episodes of psychosis while in the White House.

A common myth about Nixon and Watergate is that two inspired journalists uncovered the truth about the series of illegal activities known collectively as “Watergate,” and then Democrats in DC brought down the administration. And that sounds almost as noble as George Washington admitting that he chopped down a cherry tree. But, off course, it is far from an accurate history of what happened.

The Sheppard book has been cited by pale conservative Patrick Buchanan as evidence that “the left” was wrong -- terribly wrong -- about Richard Nixon. Baloney. The value of the book -- and I have yet to actually read it -- is that it destroys the lie that it was Democrats and “leftists” that knee-capped the Nixon administration. How thoroughly the author covers issues such as who characters like Bob Woodward and Mark Felt really were, as well as the “politics” of many of the major players in uncovering the scandals, remains to be seen. But I am really looking forward to reading the book.

I suspect that the average American citizen today would find the idea of reading 800+ pages of Nixon White House transcripts painfully boring. But I love it. I’d rather be reading that, than watching the latest update on Donald Trump’s nonsense on MSNBC or CNN. Of course, I am interested in the 2016 presidential election, and try to remain informed on the important issues. But, as a citizen of both the United States and world, I feel a responsibility to be as educated as possible about the combination of corruption in government, the influence of intelligence and police agencies on politics, and the ways that the corporate media distorts reality when reporting the news to the public.

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Arrow 35 replies Author Time Post
Reply Nixon: Past & President (Original post)
H2O Man Sep 2015 OP
H2O Man Sep 2015 #1
Octafish Sep 2015 #2
H2O Man Sep 2015 #3
Octafish Oct 2015 #4
hifiguy Oct 2015 #8
Octafish Oct 2015 #15
hifiguy Oct 2015 #20
malaise Oct 2015 #12
Octafish Oct 2015 #16
H2O Man Oct 2015 #19
hifiguy Oct 2015 #21
malaise Oct 2015 #23
malaise Oct 2015 #22
hifiguy Oct 2015 #9
fossilnut Oct 2015 #5
H2O Man Oct 2015 #10
fossilnut Oct 2015 #25
H2O Man Oct 2015 #26
fossilnut Oct 2015 #29
H2O Man Oct 2015 #31
fossilnut Oct 2015 #32
H2O Man Oct 2015 #33
fossilnut Oct 2015 #34
fossilnut Oct 2015 #35
malaise Oct 2015 #6
H2O Man Oct 2015 #11
hifiguy Oct 2015 #7
H2O Man Oct 2015 #13
hifiguy Oct 2015 #14
malaise Oct 2015 #24
librechik Oct 2015 #17
H2O Man Oct 2015 #18
UTUSN Oct 2015 #27
UTUSN Oct 2015 #28
lovemydog Oct 2015 #30

Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Wed Sep 30, 2015, 07:23 AM

1. In 2011, the transcripts

from Nixon's June, 1975 testimony to a grand jury investigating Watergate et al was made public. Perhaps the most interesting section of those 278 pages was when the prosecutor began to question the humiliated ex-President about the 1971 episode of the Joint Chiefs spying on Nixon and Henry Kissinger.

"Don't open that can of worms," Nixon advised the prosecutor. Upon further questioning, Nixon would only say that he had ordered Charles Radford to be shipped out of DC to the west coast. Radford was ONI -- much like Woodward and Felt. Interestingly, Radford would leak sensitive documents to Jack Anderson.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Wed Sep 30, 2015, 08:36 AM

2. Nixon was a murderous SOB and appointed a murderous SOB Secret Service man to guard Ted Kennedy.

The media do distort reality, creating a world in which intelligent kids can make it through high school without ever hearing about Nixon's treasons, whether as vice president working with CIA to murder Castro or going behind LBJ's back to sabotage the Paris peace talks.

His story -- this history -- is why I never denigrate people with labels, like "CT." It is a loaded term, designed to poison the person as a source of information and news. Here's the treasonous, murderous reality of the "Unindicted Co-Conspirator" of Watergate fame:

Nixon approved hiring a Secret Service man who said he'd 'kill on command' to guard Ted Kennedy. You can hear Nixon and Haldeman discuss it, about 40 minutes into the HBO documentary "Nixon by Nixon." While I had read the part of the transcript available years ago, and wrote about it on DU, almost no one I know has heard anything about it.



Ted Kennedy survived Richard Nixon's Plots

By Don Fulsom

In September 1972, Nixon’s continued political fear, personal loathing, and jealously of Kennedy led him to plant a spy in Kennedy’s Secret Service detail.

The mole Nixon selected for the Kennedy camp was already being groomed. He was a former agent from his Nixon’s vice presidential detail, Robert Newbrand—a man so loyal he once pledged he would do anything—even kill—for Nixon.

The President was most interested in learning about the Sen. Kennedy’s sex life. He wanted, more than anything, stated Haldeman in The Ends of Power, to “catch (Kennedy) in the sack with one of his babes.”

In a recently transcribed tape of a September 8, 1972 talk among the President and aides Bob Haldeman and Alexander Butterfield, Nixon asks whether Secret Service chief James Rowley would appoint Newbrand to head Kennedy’s detail:

Haldeman: He's to assign Newbrand.

President Nixon: Does he understand that he's to do that?

Butterfield: He's effectively already done it. And we have a full force assigned, 40 men.

Haldeman: I told them to put a big detail on him (unclear).

President Nixon: A big detail is correct. One that can cover him around the clock, every place he goes. (Laughter obscures mixed voices.)

President Nixon: Right. No, that's really true. He has got to have the same coverage that we give the others, because we're concerned about security and we will not assume the responsibility unless we're with him all the time.

Haldeman: And Amanda Burden (one of Kennedy’s alleged girlfriends) can't be trusted. (Unclear.) You never know what she might do. (Unclear.)

Haldeman then assures the President that Newbrand “will do anything that I tell him to … He really will. And he has come to me twice and absolutely, sincerely said, "With what you've done for me and what the President's done for me, I just want you to know, if you want someone killed, if you want anything else done, any way, any direction …"

President Nixon: The thing that I (unclear) is this: We just might get lucky and catch this son-of-a-bitch and ruin him for '76.

Haldeman: That's right.

President Nixon: He doesn't know what he's really getting into. We're going to cover him, and we are not going to take "no" for an answer. He can't say "no." The Kennedys are arrogant as hell with these Secret Service. He says, "Fine," and (Newbrand) should pick the detail, too.


Toward the end of this conversation, Nixon exclaims that Newbrand’s spying “(is) going to be fun,” and Haldeman responds: “Newbrand will just love it.”

Nixon also had a surveillance tip for Haldeman for his spy-to-be: “I want you to tell Newbrand if you will that (unclear) because he's a Catholic, sort of play it, he was for Jack Kennedy all the time. Play up to Kennedy, that "I'm a great admirer of Jack Kennedy." He's a member of the Holy Name Society. He wears a St. Christopher (unclear).” Haldeman laughs heartily at the President’s curious advice.

Despite the enthusiasm of Nixon and Haldeman, Newbrand apparently never produced anything of great value. When this particular round of Nixon’s spying on Kennedy was uncovered in 1997, The Washington Post quoted Butterfield as saying periodic reports on Kennedy's activities were delivered to Haldeman, but that Butterfield did not think any potentially damaging information was ever dug up.

SOURCE:

http://surftofind.com/tedkennedy



Why does that matter? The Warren Commission, and the nation's mass media, never heard about the CIA-Mafia plots to kill Castro until the Church Committee in 1975. You'd think that would be a matter of concern to all Americans, especially considering how then-vice president Nixon was head of the "White House Action Team" that contacted the Mafia for murder.

This is the sort of information citizens of a democracy shouldn't have to search ConsortiumNews or CounterPunch to learn. It should be taught in school, or at the least, discussed in the nation's mass media. I certainly think it's unfair for people -- especially those who consider themselves Democrats or democrats -- to label those interested in such subjects "Conspiracy Theorists" and whatever else the haters and the asshats of the emoticon brigade can think of.

PS: Thank you for writing, H20 Man. Got to rest sometimes, eh, Don J?

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Response to Octafish (Reply #2)

Wed Sep 30, 2015, 10:01 PM

3. The only times when

Richard Nixon was not actively involved in a conspiracy in his entire adult life was when he ate alone. (Paraphrasing our favorite US President, of course!)

A person simply could not make up the web of "conspiracies" that Nixon was involved in, while "serving" the nation. And a person, no matter how intelligent or insightful, could not possibly have a solid grasp of American politics -- from the 1950s until today -- unless they are familiar with the career of that very strange, very American, man we knew as President Nixon.

As always, I truly enjoy talking with you, my Friend.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #3)

Thu Oct 1, 2015, 07:27 AM

4. Younger Democrats may not appreciate Nixon's role in the current situation...

...Secret Government, Secret Wars, Secret War Profiteers, Gangsters and Criminals from Wall Street to Los Angeles -- all for the benefit of the 1-percent of 1-percent.



Here, President Nixon receives Rev Moon's ble$$ing.



Sen. Nixon was a saint, compared to his Patrón, Sen. Prescott Bush.



During Watergate, Nixon said to fire "Everyone. Except (GHW) Bush and the Texans. He'll do anything for our side."

No doubt.

PS: Thank you for the kinds words. The feelings are mutual.

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Response to Octafish (Reply #4)

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 07:49 PM

8. Turn over a rock between the years 1948 and 1974,

 

and inevitably Nixon is under it.

The difference between Nixon and the Bush Crime Family is that Nixon was obsessed with personal demons. The BCF always kept its eye on the big picture: hegemony and riches.

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Response to hifiguy (Reply #8)

Sat Oct 10, 2015, 11:09 AM

15. Hughes to Bush to Cohn to Nixon to Lansky to Switzerland...



HUGHES, NIXON AND THE CIA: THE WATERGATE CONSPIRACY WOODWARD AND BERNSTEIN MISSED

an investigative report
By Larry DuBois and Laurence Gonzales

THE PUPPET AND THE PUPPETMASTERS
UNCOVERING THE SECRET WORLD OF NIXON, HUGHES AND THE CIA


including

The Buying of the President
The World's Biggest Intelligence Front
The War Within the Hughes Empire
The Untold Story Behind Watergate


EXCERPT...

THE PURCHASE OF NIXON

I can make or break anybody.
-HOWARD HUGHES


The relationship between (Howard) Hughes and (Richard) Nixon goes back at least to 1956. That year, Hughes lent Donald Nixon $205,000 to save a failing restaurant business. For Hughes, giving money in exchange for potential political favors was not unusual. Right after that loan—in a coincidence that investigators have been suspicious of for years—while Nixon was Vice-President, the Hughes Medical Institute was suddenly granted a tax-exempt status after prior refusals by the IRS. The loan to Donald was kept secret for obvious reasons. But four years later, one week before the 1960 Kennedy-Nixon election, columnist Drew Pearson got the story and printed it. The press flashed it across the country and to this day, Nixon and his friends believe it was the news of that loan that was partly responsible for his defeat by Kennedy.

In 1962, Nixon was running for governor of California. The loan again became a campaign issue and Nixon was called on to explain it publicly. Again he lost the race. Later, Rebozo's attorney, William Frates, was to say that Rebozo felt the story "had materially affected the outcome of the 1960 Presidential election and the 1962 governor's race in California." So not once but twice Nixon's relationship with Hughes was connected, at least in his mind and the minds of his friends, with agonizing political setbacks.

In 1968, Nixon was again running for President. Hughes had moved into his penthouse suite at Las Vegas' Desert Inn (known locally as the D.I.). Meier's files are jammed with photocopies of memos from that period, all of which had been handwritten with a ballpoint pen on lined yellow legal pads. Hughes didn't mince words when directing his executives to achieve his goals for him. In reference to political contributions that year, for example, he wrote to Robert Maheu, manager of the Hughes-Nevada Operations: "I want you to go see Nixon as my special confidential emissary. I feel there is a really valid possibility of a Republican victory this year. If that could be realized under our sponsorship and supervision every inch of the way, then we would be ready to follow with Laxalt (Nevada's governor at the time) as our next candidate."

Frank statements like that, as well as court documents from lawsuits against Hughes, show that he desperately wanted four things at that time and was prepared to devote enormous resources to getting them.

1. He wanted to select a Presidential candidate of his own and "go all the way" in funding him.

2. He wanted to purchase an airline. He had been forced out of ownership of TWA and aviation had always been his first love. Air West was for sale and he was determined to buy it.

3. He wanted to expand his Las Vegas empire. He had bought five hotel-casinos and the Justice Department had ruled he could make no more purchases without violating its antitrust guidelines. Hughes's attitude was that Justice could go to hell.

4. With a fury that bordered on the pathological (see A Hughes Vignette on page 182), he wanted the Atomic Energy Commission to stop underground nuclear testing, which caused the D.I. to sway back and forth a few inches.



CONTINUED...

http://www.meier.com/johnhmeier/Playboy_Article.html

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Response to Octafish (Reply #15)

Sat Oct 10, 2015, 03:18 PM

20. I remember reading that article in Playboy

 

back in the day. Playboy used to do some pretty damn good investigative journalism,

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Response to Octafish (Reply #4)

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 09:27 PM

12. Yep we understand nothing without understanding these goons

You and WaterMan are fresh cool water in a drought

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Response to malaise (Reply #12)

Sat Oct 10, 2015, 11:17 AM

16. There was a time when we might have put an end to their treason.

But Gerald R. Ford pardoned Nixon.



So, Nixon went unpunished, as did his "Unindicted Co-Conspirators."

Odd how George Herbert Walker Bush of Dealey Plaza, CIA, Vietnam, Bay of Pigs, Chile, Watergate, October Surprise, El Salvador, Reagan Survives Hinckley and Bush, NAZI Ethnics for Reagan-Bush, Voodoo Economics, INSLAW/Promis, Haiti, Iraq-gate / Banca Nazionale del Lavoro arms to Saddam, BCCI International Money Laundering for Terrorists & Intelligence Community arming Dr AQ Khan, Savings & Loan scandal in general and Silverado in particular, Iran-contra Guns/Drugs/Martial Law, Gulf War I Glaspie Gives Go-Ahead, Selection 2000 Shreds US Constitution, Tax Cuts for UltraRich, Criminal Justice Department, Suicidal Environmental Policy, ENRON Energy Policy, 9-11 Criminal Negligence, at best; Treason, most likely, Illegal Iraq Invasion, Paperless Selection 2004, Great Bankster Bailout of 2008 fame also went unpunished during the Iran-Contra treason.

Poppy lied then, too, claiming to have been "Out of the Loop." What a coincidence.

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Response to Octafish (Reply #16)

Sat Oct 10, 2015, 02:48 PM

19. Lamar Waldron's

"Watergate: The Hidden History (Nixon, the Mafia, and the CIA)" -- a fully-documented by recently-released federal government papers (hence, absolutely not a "conspiracy theory," as some of our good friends might otherwise claim!), shows that Ford should never, ever, have pardoned Nixon. However, at the same time, it reinforces the idea that Nixon knew he could not be prosecuted .....simply because various intelligence agencies would have claimed "national security" as valid reasons to not disclose the documents that Nixon would have demanded were necessary for his defense.

At that time, it is probably unlikely the courts would have insisted upon the release of those documents. It's anyone's guess if the federal courts would have forced Nixon to go to trial without them.

And it is a very direct line between Nixon's pardon, and the numerous crimes known collectively as the Iran-Contra scandal. And the failure to fully prosecute that, of course, led to many other crimes, as you have noted.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #19)

Sat Oct 10, 2015, 03:21 PM

21. Excellent book. Incredibly thorough and documented to the nth degree.

 

What Nixon wanted to know was what the Democrats, and Larry O'Brien in particular, knew about his connections to the Mafia/CIA Cuban plots, which were to put it mildly, intimate.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #19)

Sat Oct 10, 2015, 03:32 PM

23. +1,000

The only way to clean up the stable is to lock up the criminals

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Response to Octafish (Reply #16)

Sat Oct 10, 2015, 03:30 PM

22. And no one has been accountable since

hence the war criminals are walking free

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #3)

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 07:52 PM

9. Harry Truman had perhaps the definitive quote regarding Nixon:

 

"Richard Nixon is a no good, lying bastard. He can lie out of both sides of his mouth at the same time, and if he ever caught himself telling the truth, he'd lie just to keep his hand in.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 07:38 PM

5. Question from a Newbie

Hi H2O Man,
I am brand new to this site and have just started to read some posts. However, while doing research, Google took me to a post of yours from Sept. 15, 2007. Because that is on the old site, I cannot post to it. I have some questions about the photos you have there. I know this has nothing to do with this current post about Nixon, but this site won't let me send you a message because I'm too new. Please advise on how I can ask you my questions. Thank you!

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Response to fossilnut (Reply #5)

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 09:16 PM

10. Just ask them here.

I'll be glad to try to answer your questions.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #10)

Sun Oct 11, 2015, 02:46 AM

25. Thank you.

There are two old photos in your Sept. 15, 2007 post. One is of an old mill and one is of a train trestle. Do you know where these were located? I have been searching for old photos of Gilboa, but these don't look like Gilboa. Yet you are discussing the Gilboa fossils in this post. I'm also wondering where you found the Eospermatopteris fossils. I have been working with Dr. Bill Stein for quite a while now on new finds in the Gilboa area, so I am intrigued when you wrote that these fossils were the furthest west Bill has ever seen them. I would appreciate any information you can share with me about this. Thank you.

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Response to fossilnut (Reply #25)

Sun Oct 11, 2015, 03:05 PM

26. Wow!

Bill knows me; I took him on a tour of the creek where those photos were taken. He could give you my contact information.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #26)

Sun Oct 11, 2015, 10:26 PM

29. I only know you as H2O Man.

That may not be enough information for Bill to identify you, lol! Could you maybe name the creek or give me more of a clue to tell Bill? And what about those two photos? Gilboa or not Gilboa?

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Response to fossilnut (Reply #29)

Mon Oct 12, 2015, 08:14 AM

31. East Guilford.

Bill came to East Guilford, and we walked the creek bed there; I later came to visit him at SUNY-B.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #31)

Mon Oct 12, 2015, 11:12 AM

32. Thank you.

I had a foggy head last night. It occurred to me this morning that all I had to do was send Bill your 2007 post and he would know from that who you are. So I just sent him an email. I look forward to talking to you more about this.

So are the two antique photos from East Guilford as well?

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Response to fossilnut (Reply #32)

Mon Oct 12, 2015, 12:04 PM

33. Yep.

I had come across the best fossil there back in the early 1970s, while skipping school.

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #33)

Mon Oct 12, 2015, 08:11 PM

34. Sometimes the best lessons are found in nature.

Do you still have that fossil? I learned about the Gilboa fossils only a couple of years ago. I live near Albany. But I have become totally immersed in learning everything I can about them, as well as learning the history of Gilboa itself and the village that lies beneath the Schoharie Reservoir. I spend as much time as I can in the mountains, searching for fossils. I have a whole basement full at this point. I even found one that might be a new species. Bill is helping me with establishing what it is.

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Response to fossilnut (Reply #34)

Wed Oct 14, 2015, 01:33 PM

35. Frustrating.

Sorry to tell you this, but Bill doesn't remember you as well as you think he does. I finally got a response to my email, in which I had included a link to your 2007 post and asked him for your contact info, and here is what he replied:

"I think I remember this. It was a group of concerned persons near Sidney NY. They had discovered a tree impression, but I wasn't sure much could be done with it.

Wm Stein"

And that's all he wrote. How many times do I have to post on this site before I can send you a private message?

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 07:40 PM

6. Missed this post

Good to see you WaterMan

Now I see why you're been 'absent'

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Response to malaise (Reply #6)

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 09:20 PM

11. Thanks!

The books are indeed one of the reasons I've been away from the old computer. And the best ones, at that!

I have at least one OP in mind regarding these two books that I think people here may find interesting. (Of course, as my children often remind me, what I find fascinating is often of little or no interest to most people.)

Always good to have the opportunity to talk with you!

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 07:48 PM

7. Might I suggest you add Rick Perlstein's trilogy of

 

"Before the Storm," "Nixonland," and "The Invisible Bridge?"

I found them extremely interesting and readable and IMO no one has explained the sociopolitical currents of that era any better.

Nixon has always fascinated me as well. Such a strange man, so filled with and consumed by demons.

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Response to hifiguy (Reply #7)

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 09:29 PM

13. Perlstein is an outrageously

insightful, valuable, and talented author. And I agree 100% that people should read his books. Absolutely. (I'm sure that I've posted about at least "Nixonland" in the past ....I think several times, but it may be that I'm including responses to others' posts, along with just one OP of my own.)

I'm finding the book of 1973 transcripts the perfect response to the nonsense in the book by the former Nixon lawyer. Yet, it, too, is an interesting read, in the sense of its exposing the thought processes of one of his apologists. He's intent upon re-writing -- and changing -- history.

For example, the transcripts document that Nixon was extremely paranoid that the Watergate investigations would uncover the infamous Huston Plan. As you know, even to this day, most of it remains unavailable to the citizens of the United States. It was, of course, the very definition of "unconstitutional" .....and it served as the framework for the Patriot Act. (Now, I do remember posting an OP about the Patriot Act being an updated Huston Plan, back when it was first becoming known publicly.)

Thanks!

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Response to H2O Man (Reply #13)

Fri Oct 9, 2015, 10:09 PM

14. The first thing I thought of when reading

 

about the Huston Plan was Bush and Poindexter's Total Information Awareness plan. Same idea blown up to elephantine proportions. Being governed by power-mad paranoids is deeply disturbing whether Nixon or Cheney.

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Response to hifiguy (Reply #14)

Sat Oct 10, 2015, 03:34 PM

24. Will we ever have the same exhaustive research about

the Bush family.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sat Oct 10, 2015, 11:57 AM

17. great post as usual--

possible typo--I believe you meant Buchanan is a paleo conservative, although ironically he is also a pale one.

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Response to librechik (Reply #17)

Sat Oct 10, 2015, 02:31 PM

18. Yep. (paleo-)

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Sun Oct 11, 2015, 08:59 PM

27. Well, O.K., fine if you want to continue our generation of JFK/LBJ/Nix. I'm tired of it all. I'm old

I differ with you on JFK and Tricky Dick. JFK was far more demented with his sex than even CLINTON and Tricky actually was something of a Lib. LBJ was second only to FDR in actual accomplishments, despite his own nutcase quirks and Vietnam.

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Response to UTUSN (Reply #27)

Sun Oct 11, 2015, 09:05 PM

28. By the bye, CIA a-hole WOODWARD is cashing in again with more tapes, another book

Whassiname, BUTTERFIELD/butterworth squirreled away documents and now gifted them to WOODWARD who will now be gifting us with another book. WOODY is who "interviewed" the comotose CASEY on the deathbed.

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Response to H2O Man (Original post)

Mon Oct 12, 2015, 02:05 AM

30. I too am fascinated by Nixon.

I've probably read 25 books on Watergate. I have the first Brinkley tapes book. Will probably get this one. The March 23, 1973 conversation with Haldeman, as you probably know, was the so-called smoking gun - in it he orders that a million dollars be used as hush money to buy people's silence, proof that he orchestrated the cover-up. I've always wondered what was in the infamous 18 1/2 minute gap on one of the tapes. I'd imagine it was incredibly damaging. Among the books I've found most useful is Stanley Cutler's excellent Abuse of Power, which I believe we've discussed here in the past.

I presume the judge that this other book criticizes is John Sirica. I'm interested in what that author has to say because I enjoy alternative theories and hearing what the Nixon Administration folks were thinking. What a crazy time period. And what a shame that such a smart man was so obsessed with his 'enemies.' His plotting and paranoid scheming were just atrocious and his refusal to get out of Vietnam was costly to our nation. Like you, I feel we learn more by reading history than we do by following the day to day gossip that often calls itself news and is really little more than gossip.

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