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Author Topic: Former President Gerald Ford dies at 93
Freshman
We Three Blings


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I guess. As for Nixon:I've been trying to tell everyone about his bombing of cambodia and his possible support of the coupe in Chile, but everyone praises him for ending the Vietnam War. I don't get it: how can that be overlooked and even more disgusting: How can the public put up with Henry Kissinger, Nixon's accomplice, being on the Colbert Report when he supported such awful things?!!!

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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Freshman:
How can the public put up with Henry Kissinger, Nixon's accomplice, being on the Colbert Report when he supported such awful things?!!!

Perhaps you could start a collection to have the man rounded up and publically stoned? In the meantime he's free to appear on any TV show that will have him.

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Freshman
We Three Blings


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Christie and Sarah:you don't agree with Educatedindian's comments?

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Sara at home
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by educatedindian:

Sara, have you seen the other posts in here about how terrible a source Wikipedia is?

So which part of what I posted is wrong?

quote:
Sukharno's claim was based on a falsehood as flimsy as the claims that Guatemala was "going Communist" in the 1950s. FRETILIN was a populist Catholic party. (See Chomsky's works on East Timor.)
So what would Kissinger's and Ford's motive have been, if not the domino effect immediately after the communist win in Vietnam?

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educatedindian
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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home: no one was considering charging Nixon with anything related to the deaths involved in with the war in Southeast Asia but only for little more than a cover-up of a break-in at the Watergate Hotel.
One of the 14 charges Nixon was for illegally bombing Cambodia. The other 13 had to do with Watergate.

Nixon's defense? "The president can bomb anyone he wants to."

Like I point out to my classes, the most important thing about Watergate was the way it led to other charges, like a multi million dollar slush fund from a bribe from the dairy association.

And Pinochet faced corruption charges as well.

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educatedindian
I Saw Three Shipments


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quote:
So what would Kissinger's and Ford's motive have been, if not the domino effect immediately after the communist win in Vietnam? [/QB]
Are you seriously claiming the North Vietnamese were going to invade a country like Indonesia, with thousands of island and a population greater than the US? When the Vietnamese didn't have a navy so much as a shabby little coast guard?

Indonesia was an important ally whose government killed hundreds of thousands of actual Communists and many more who weren't (including labor unions, thus providing plenty of cheap labor for US and other companies.)

Why US presidents backed their actions is simple:

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by Freshman:
I guess. As for Nixon:I've been trying to tell everyone about his bombing of cambodia and his possible support of the coupe in Chile, but everyone praises him for ending the Vietnam War. I don't get it: how can that be overlooked and even more disgusting: How can the public put up with Henry Kissinger, Nixon's accomplice, being on the Colbert Report when he supported such awful things?!!!

You've been trying to tell people about bombing of Cambodia??? Honey, I know one of the guys who did the bombing. And Nixon kept the war going on long enough to make it a campaign issue. I'm not sure who you talk to but I don't know anyone who "praises" Nixon for ending the Vietnam War. He ended it, that's it.

I suppose without the grasp of how much fear there was during most of the Cold War era of a communist take-over of the world, you wouldn't understand.

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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by educatedindian:
quote:
So what would Kissinger's and Ford's motive have been, if not the domino effect immediately after the communist win in Vietnam?
Are you seriously claiming the North Vietnamese were going to invade a country like Indonesia, with thousands of island and a population greater than the US? When the Vietnamese didn't have a navy so much as a shabby little coast guard?
Not only am I not claiming that, I don't even understand how you came up with it.

quote:
Indonesia was an important ally whose government killed hundreds of thousands of actual Communists and many more who weren't (including labor unions, thus providing plenty of cheap labor for US and other companies.)

Why US presidents backed their actions is simple:

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

If you killed commies in those days, you had the support of the US, regardless of whom else you killed.

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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by educatedindian:
One of the 14 charges Nixon was for illegally bombing Cambodia. The other 13 had to do with Watergate.

What charges? Nixon wasn't charged with anything.

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Freshman
We Three Blings


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Sara: I guess I don't understand the cold war paranoia. However, I just don't think you can proclaim that Ford was "decent" without touching on the East Timor incident

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snopes
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quote:
Are you seriously claiming the North Vietnamese were going to invade a country like Indonesia, with thousands of island and a population greater than the US? When the Vietnamese didn't have a navy so much as a shabby little coast guard?
Here's a clue for you: "Communists" and "North Vietnamese" were not the same thing. One was a subset of the other.

- snopes

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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
I'm not sure who you talk to but I don't know anyone who "praises" Nixon for ending the Vietnam War.

Maybe 18 year olds whose high school American history course didn't make it past WWII?

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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quote:
Originally posted by Freshman:
He was an asshole, apparently. See my last post

Actually, he wasn't.

Your saying so doesn't make it so.

His support of policies I oppose does not make him an asshole.

Hopefully, people will start learning that.

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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Freshman
We Three Blings


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quote:
Originally posted by Christie:
quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
I'm not sure who you talk to but I don't know anyone who "praises" Nixon for ending the Vietnam War.

Maybe 18 year olds whose high school American history course didn't make it past WWII?
True, don't think we covered Vietnam in World History, but I can't recall. Apologies for overreacting

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Sara at home
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We haven't "proclaimed" him decent. The people form both parties who knew and worked with him in Congress and when he was President, reporters who covered him and interviewed him, his friends and family are the ones who proclaimed him decent. Those of us here are just agreeing.

And really, you can't speak about East Timor (which was more than an "incident") without understanding the Cold War era, which was not, as you state, paranoia. The fear was justified.

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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quote:
Originally posted by Christie:
quote:
Originally posted by Freshman:
How can the public put up with Henry Kissinger, Nixon's accomplice, being on the Colbert Report when he supported such awful things?!!!

Perhaps you could start a collection to have the man rounded up and publically stoned? In the meantime he's free to appear on any TV show that will have him.
Ya know, I've got lots and lots of limestone in my yard; I'd be happy to contribute as much as folks are willing to dig up toward this cause...

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Sara at home
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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But....but....but....Kissinger is a respected statesman! How can you suggest such a thing. [Eek!]

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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
But....but....but....Kissinger is a respected stateman! How can you suggest such a thing. [Eek!]

And he does have a sexy accent... [Big Grin]

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If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, it's just possible you haven't grasped the situation. - Jean Kerr

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Sara at home
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How did we go from Ford's death to stoning Kissinger?

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Freshman
We Three Blings


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It's my fault..sorry. So the East Timen attack had nothing to do with Vietnam?

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Simply Madeline
The First USA Noel


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GenYus alluded to this on the previous page, but I can't believe no one's posted this yet.
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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by Freshman:
It's my fault..sorry. So the East Timen attack had nothing to do with Vietnam?

Yes, it did. Do you know what the "domino effect" (or Domino Theory) is? If you don't, you can't understand anything that went on in the US foreign policy during the Cold War era.

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Freshman
We Three Blings


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I understand the domino effect, yeah. Had to look up the domino theory on wikipedia though: If one country falls under communism, another
country follows. Can we continue this discussion in Pms

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Zachary Fizz
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
Originally posted by Freshman:
Can we continue this discussion in Pms

Why would you want to do that? To those of us who live far from the USA, the discussion is very interesting and informative.

I would be interested to know how US snopesters compare, say, Pres. Ford's support of Suharto with Pres. Carter's refusal to support the Shah of Iran. Was a policy of "better the devil you know" vindicated by history, do you think? Or must the answer necessarily be more nuanced, perhaps?

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DAnnino
The First USA Noel


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Just to add two kopecks to the discussion:

Ford disagreed with Bush on invading Iraq

Link: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/16372929/

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NO BETTER FRIEND, NO WORSE ENEMY
--
"I grok when apes learn to laugh, they'll be people."

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Ramblin' Dave, quietly making noise
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
Originally posted by Freshman:
Can we continue this discussion in Pms

I guess that settles the issue of your gender. [Big Grin]
Sorry, couldn´t resist. I mostly agree with your take on Ford, and I am especially tired of ¨the pardon was best for America.¨ Maybe it´s just that I´m too young to remember it, but I really don´t believe that. I never really have bought into the idea that it´s somehow wrong to come down hard on the president when he does something clearly wrong. And Nixon did a lot of things that were clearly wrong.

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Swept away by my feelings, ashamed and confused
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Let the mystery play as it will! -Lui Collins

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Lainie
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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educatedindian said:

quote:
4. He was a bumbler among other bumblers in his most famous assignment pre-Presidency, on the Warren Commission. (And no, I don't want to bring up the incredibly convoluted and ultimately useless question of the assassination. The simple fact is, the Warren Commission did a terrible job that your average small town DA could've done better.)
I think you misunderstand the purpose of the Warren Commission. I don't belive the Commission was ever intended, or mandated, to complete a thorough, independent investigation of Kennedy's death. It was intended to quash rumors. In hindsight, the problem with that approach is obvious, but it may not have been at the time, and in any case, Ford did the job he was appointed to do.

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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by Ramblin' Dave, quietly making noise:
Maybe it´s just that I´m too young to remember it, but I really don´t believe that. I never really have bought into the idea that it´s somehow wrong to come down hard on the president when he does something clearly wrong. And Nixon did a lot of things that were clearly wrong.

You're too young to remember.

It wasn't about not coming down hard on a person but about putting a nightmare behind the country and moving forward. That really needed to happen.

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Lainie
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quote:
Originally posted by Ramblin' Dave, quietly making noise:
Maybe it´s just that I´m too young to remember it, but I really don´t believe that. I never really have bought into the idea that it´s somehow wrong to come down hard on the president when he does something clearly wrong. And Nixon did a lot of things that were clearly wrong.

What Sara said. It was never about not coming down hard on Nixon. It was about what was best for the country.

You're old enough to remember the OJ Simpson trial, right? Imagine a circus like that going on, with the former POTUS at its center. Imagine the current POTUS attempting to govern, and to pull the country back together, with that for a distraction.

There are plenty of people who are old enough to remember, who unlike me were adults when it happened, who were furious about the pardon at the time. I suspect if you ask most of them now, they would, like Sara, say that it was the right thing.
Veteran journalist Richard Reeves, for one:

quote:
More specifically, I mean that Ford understood (or guessed at, it doesn’t matter which) something that I now realize was true. He told me something in 1974, or not too much later, that I can only paraphrase because I did not take it seriously enough: that it would have been impossible to govern the country if there had been open charges against Nixon, that the television-focused attention of the nation would have followed the disgraced President from courtroom to courtroom.

He was right. Whatever his failings as a leader, and they were many, he was right about the big one. We have turned out to be a television nation that has trouble focusing on anything else for months when we can watch a stone-faced old football player accused of murdering his wife.

Due credit to Mr. Reeves for the OJ Simpson analogy, which he also used on All Things Considered yesterday afternoon.

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snapdragonfly
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That quote from Richard Reeves makes sense to me.

I was a young teen when Watergate happened. My family was always one to discuss politics at length and frequently so I think I heard more about it at home than some kids my age. Watergate was all there was on tv, all there was that anyone talked about. Everyone was horribly upset.

We were all mad about pardoning Nixon - felt we didn't get to see him get his just desserts (though my grandmother thought his leaving in disgrace was bad enough, but she was a Rockefeller Republican anyway, heh) but looking back, regardless of the reason why, and in view of how we are as illustrated very well by the OJ debacle, I think it probably was for the best. It took us a long time to get over it as it was. I remember one time on SNL Chevy Chase even said something about we should never forgive or forget Nixon and Watergate.

~though, in comparison to the profound nature of the disaster that the Shrub has got us into, Watergate is not seeming as bad by comparison...it's no less bad than it ever was, but I think the mess we are in now just dwarfs it. JMO.

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(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

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Lainie
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by snapdragonfly:
Watergate was all there was on tv, all there was that anyone talked about.

And in 1972-1974, most people only received the three major networks. You were lucky if you got a few UHF stations showing old reruns of TV shows and bad movies. Even soap operas were pre-empted to show some of the Watergate hearings. Watching the evening news and subscribing to the daily newspaper were far more common in those days, when there were no other common sources for news. Watergate, or some aspect of it, was the top story on the evening news and the front page story in the paper every day for months.

It's easy to forget, living with today's far more diffuse media, how pervasive Watergate was. Even at the height of the OJ Simpson trial, most people could flip to Bravo or HBO, or pop a tape in the VCR.

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Ramblin' Dave, quietly making noise
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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Fair enough, but I don't see why all that is justification for letting Nixon off the hook. Yes, it would have sucked for the circus to go on longer, but was it really better that he essentially got away with everything? I don't believe so.
While we're at it, I am old enough to remember when Nixon died, and how a lot of pundits who really should have known better felt compelled to argue that he really wasn't that bad. Time heals all wounds, I suppose, but what's wrong is still wrong. I wonder if an awful lot of the people in the "I was angry about it but now I think he was right" crowd have just forgotten what a big deal it really was at the time.

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Swept away by my feelings, ashamed and confused
But just now it's enough to be walking with you
Let the mystery play as it will! -Lui Collins

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Sara at home
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Yes, it was better.

quote:
I wonder if an awful lot of the people in the "I was angry about it but now I think he was right" crowd have just forgotten what a big deal it really was at the time.
That would be me. Me, who took a picture of my TV screen as Nixon was saying "Therefore, I shall resign the Presidency effective at noon tomorrow." Me, who still goes into a time warp everytime I read "All the President's Men" and expect news of Watergate each night at 6:30. I fully remember what a big deal it was at the time because it consumned my life for almost two years starting prior to the 1972 election. It was time for it to be over.

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Lainie
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quote:
Originally posted by Ramblin' Dave, quietly making noise:
Fair enough, but I don't see why all that is justification for letting Nixon off the hook.

It's not, and it's not intended to be. Letting Nixon off the hook was the price we paid to bring some peace to a nation that desperately needed it.

Here are a few other things that were happening in 1974: We were still trying to wrap up our military involvement in Vietnam, and beginning to turn our attention to healing the horribly painful divisions caused by that involvement. The economy was so bad that another Great Depression seemed possible. The cold war and the nuclear arms race were still going on, and the USSR, as far as we knew at the time, was at the height of its powers. There were growing problems in the Middle East, and OPEC was just starting to wield its power over our energy supplies.

Punishing Nixon was not as important as addressing any single one of those problems.

If you have some vision of Tricky Dicky walking meekly into court, pleading guilty and accepting his sentence; or even of facing trial, being found guilty, and accepting his sentence, you need to read up on the man. He would have fought conviction every step of the way until he died, and in the long run, the fight would have cost the country more than he was worth.

quote:
While we're at it, I am old enough to remember when Nixon died, and how a lot of pundits who really should have known better felt compelled to argue that he really wasn't that bad. Time heals all wounds, I suppose, but what's wrong is still wrong.
Those pundits aren't here, and nobody here is suggesting they were right. Can you really not see the difference between their positions on the one hand, and mine and Sara's on the other?

quote:
I wonder if an awful lot of the people in the "I was angry about it but now I think he was right" crowd have just forgotten what a big deal it really was at the time.
That's bullshit, and insulting bullshit at that.

We haven't forgotten what a big deal it was. We remember very, very clearly what a big, horrible, terrible, awful deal it was. That is precisely why it needed to be over. Not to let Nixon off the hook, although that was an unfortunate side effect, but to let the rest of us off the hook.

Did you read the link to the Richard Reeves article? Do you understand the difference between forgetting something and gaining perspective on it?

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Posts: 8322 | From: Columbus, OH | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
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quote:
Originally posted by Lainie:
That's bullshit, and insulting bullshit at that.

I'm going to have to agree with Lainie on that. It isn't worded too strongly. It is insulting bullshit to suggest that I and a lot of the people I know have forgotten. Condescending and patronizing, if you want more acceptable wording.

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Assume that all my posts will be edited at least once. Dyslexic -- can't spell, can't type, can't proofread.

Posts: 8317 | From: Reading, PA | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
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