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Author Topic: Former President Gerald Ford dies at 93
Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
The part I don't get is that I never disagreed with your simple assessment of cold war policy. So I'm not sure where you came up with the idea that I don't know anything about US policy during that period.


From your posts.

Could you be specific?
The whole idea that East Timor invasion was the result of some sort of personality flaw on the part of Ford and not a continuation of existing USA foreign policy?

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

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Publius
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by Publius:
In all seriousness, could someone explain to me what is meant by the idea that Ford's pardon of Nixon fostered "national healing"?


Probably not, if you haven't understood from Lainie's and my posts so far.

quote:

The practical effect of this "national healing" was twofold. First, it reinforced Nixon's "imperial presidency," sending a clear signal that the President and his cronies were above the law--that the individual and partisan interests of the President and his advisors were indistinguishable from the interests of the United States. Second, it let the nation wallow in the pleasant fiction that this problem had been excised with Nixon himself, when in fact the problem was (and remains) much more deeply entrenched within certain quarters of national politics.


You really need to try to understand the era instead of spinning what happened to fit the ideas you have. You are so wrong on your speculation that I have to believe you don't know much about the the time period under discussion.

Thank you for clarifying that you have nothing useful to contribute to this discussion.
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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Publius:
Thank you for clarifying that you have nothing useful to contribute to this discussion.

Wow. Just wow. You really care that much that your point of view is somehow going to be validated by some random person on a messageboard that you stoop to this to "win"?

--------------------
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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Steve
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
The part I don't get is that I never disagreed with your simple assessment of cold war policy. So I'm not sure where you came up with the idea that I don't know anything about US policy during that period.


From your posts.

Could you be specific?
The whole idea that East Timor invasion was the result of some sort of personality flaw on the part of Ford and not a continuation of existing USA foreign policy?
I never said that. Please respond to things I've said instead of making stuff up.

My point was that allowing the invasion was illegal. It doesn't matter if it was based on existing US policy.

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Publius
Happy Holly Days


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I'm sorry Sara (and Christie), I was too quick to reply, and I was pissed off.

I meant my question very seriously: what specific, concrete process are people referring to when they say that Ford's pardon of Nixon was necessary for "national healing"? What would have happened if Ford hadn't pardoned Nixon?

I don't think Sara's response to my post was especially useful: while I obviously wasn't there, I do, in fact, know a thing or two about the period in question. Sara is not, as far as I know, the arbiter of who knows what about the history in question. Her post didn't seem to have anything to offer besides personal insults.

My response wasn't at all constructive either, though, and I apologize for it.

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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
The part I don't get is that I never disagreed with your simple assessment of cold war policy. So I'm not sure where you came up with the idea that I don't know anything about US policy during that period.


From your posts.

Could you be specific?
The whole idea that East Timor invasion was the result of some sort of personality flaw on the part of Ford and not a continuation of existing USA foreign policy?
I never said that. Please respond to things I've said instead of making stuff up.

My point was that allowing the invasion was illegal. It doesn't matter if it was based on existing US policy.

[Confused] This was your initial post in this thread:

quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
I don't see how Ford's reputation for decency squares with his OKing of the Indonesian invasion of East Timor.



--------------------
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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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
So why did you guess I "just had to be there," Sara?

I don't doubt the country needed Watergate to be over; I contend that the solution Ford offered, ultimately, didn't solve anything.

I said it because you clearly don't understand that pardoning Nixon ended Watergate.

I "clearly" don't? I have said that it did end Watergate. I have said that it wasn't the best end of it.

quote:
Therefore Ford's solution did exactly what it was suppose to do: it ended Watergate. It ended that distraction. Anything else it was suppose to "solve" is revisionist history.
Did you actually read anything I posted before? That the pardoning was supposed to solve anything else isn't my argument. There were better solutions to Watergate and, more importantly and lastingly, to the much larger, much more harmful problem of campaign financing. And *that* has been my argument.

--------------------
"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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Sara at home
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:The whole idea that East Timor invasion was the result of some sort of personality flaw on the part of Ford and not a continuation of existing USA foreign policy?
I never said that. Please respond to things I've said instead of making stuff up.


You said:
quote:
At any rate, I was curious on the first page how the Ford's supposed decency could be reconciled with his East Timor policy. If his foreign policy was merely the one you outlined above, then regardless of which other presidents followed such a policy, shouldn't we rethink his decency?
I paraphrased. So sue me.

quote:
My point was that allowing the invasion was illegal. It doesn't matter if it was based on existing US policy.
Lots of illegal things happened in the execution of USA foreign policy. All the time. No one paid any attention, even when someone pointed it out. It was just business as usual.

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

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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
Did you actually read anything I posted before? That the pardoning was supposed to solve anything else isn't my argument. There were better solutions to Watergate and, more importantly and lastingly, to the much larger, much more harmful problem of campaign financing. And *that* has been my argument.

But this is revisionism in a way isn't it? Hindsight is 20/20 and all that. I'm sure most of us would love to turn back our own personal clocks and make different choices at certain key points in our lives, trusting that a different choice would mean a different life down the road. It's no more likely to be true for those personal life choices though than it would be for different choices made in the political arena. We can never really know for certain what would be different (in a positive way) in 2006 if a different course of action had been pursued in 1974.

--------------------
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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educatedindian
I Saw Three Shipments


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quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:

I think that a trial would've gotten the attention of those who would cheat at elections, and, perhaps, real, substantive campaign finance reforms would have occurred because of it.

You beat me to it.

Let me go a step further:

Has it not occurred to people that if Nixon had faced a trial and (better yet) actual prison time...

Iran Contra might never have happened?

Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, warrantless wiretapping, Plamegate, etc., might not have happened?

Namely because the Presidents involved might have been too scared spitless of doing real time and going down in even greater disgrace.

Just saw this, and it's worth reposting.
http://www.commondreams.org/views06/1228-25.htm
Gerald Ford, Unsentimentally
by Matthew Rothschild

....The pardon short-circuited the necessary prosecution of Nixon, which would have served as a salutary check on future inhabitants of the Oval Office. Instead, the pardon set a precedent for such flagrant lawbreakers as we have in the White House today.

If impeachment of Bush and Cheney may be just a remote possibility, prosecution and incarceration remain inconceivable. And so Bush and Cheney, thanks to Ford, can float comfortably above the law.

On domestic policy, Ford was a standard issue Republican, vetoing social spending bills, cutting food stamps and housing and education programs, infamously denying aid to New York City while all the while boosting Pentagon spending. And, in a move Bush and Cheney would have applauded, he proposed the nation’s first official secrets act to provide criminal penalties for the unauthorized disclosure of classified material.

On foreign policy, Ford was damnable.

He fronted for Pinochet in Chile, and kept aid flowing to that vicious strongman.

And on December 6, 1975, Ford and Henry Kissinger flew to Jakarta to meet with dictator Suharto and to give him a green light to invade East Timor....

Suharto’s invasion and occupation cost the lives of 200,000 Timorese.

But never mind. We’re not supposed to remember those things. Just that Jerry Ford was such a nice guy."

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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by Publius:

I meant my question very seriously: what specific, concrete process are people referring to when they say that Ford's pardon of Nixon was necessary for "national healing"? What would have happened if Ford hadn't pardoned Nixon?


Nixon was the unindicted co-conspirator. It was widely believed that he was unindicted because he was the sitting president. Once he was no longer president, there would have been a great deal of pressure to indict him. That would have started the whole process up again, a process that would have likely dragged on for quite a while. And truth be told, it would have further divided the country because many people simply didn't want to see a former president in jail. Many people believed that making him leave office in disgrace was punishment enough.

quote:
I don't think Sara's response to my post was especially useful: while I obviously wasn't there, I do, in fact, know a thing or two about the period in question. Sara is not, as far as I know, the arbiter of who knows what about the history in question. Her post didn't seem to have anything to offer besides personal insults.

Ah well, sorry I took the time to try to explain things. I'll read the whole post before I start to respond next time.

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

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Publius
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Christie:
quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
Did you actually read anything I posted before? That the pardoning was supposed to solve anything else isn't my argument. There were better solutions to Watergate and, more importantly and lastingly, to the much larger, much more harmful problem of campaign financing. And *that* has been my argument.

But this is revisionism in a way isn't it? Hindsight is 20/20 and all that. I'm sure most of us would love to turn back our own personal clocks and make different choices at certain key points in our lives, trusting that a different choice would mean a different life down the road. It's no more likely to be true for those personal life choices though than it would be different choices made in the political arena. We can never really know for certain what would be different in 2006 if a different course of action had been pursued in 1974.
What's wrong with revisionism? The whole point of history is to critically evaluate past decisions, and to reevaluate them as new information and perspectives become available, in order to make (hopefully, maybe, slightly) better decisions in the future.

Look, I think Ford was a decent man who did a good job holding things together under tough conditions. He knew the limits of the position he was inheriting, and he worked well within them. He really did achieve some very significant (and underrated) successes, too: he got Israel and Egypt talking, and he got the Helsinki Accords signed. Those were big accomplishments, though they wouldn't be appreciated until much later.

He wasn't a rank careerist, either: I don't think he made a corrupt bargain with Nixon over the pardon; I think he pardoned Nixon because he felt it was the right thing to do for the country.

What I'm saying, though, is that Ford might have thought that pardoning Nixon was the right thing, and people who were alive at the time might now think that pardoning Nixon was the right thing, but both Ford and his belated fans could be wrong. We have no way of telling either way unless we consider (in terms as concrete as possible) what the pardon actually did: who it "healed," how it healed them, etc.

If Ford *did* make the wrong call on pardoning Nixon, it doesn't make him evil. It means he came down on the wrong side of a very tough call, and that we should be careful not to make his mistake in the future. That's all.

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educatedindian
I Saw Three Shipments


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quote:
Originally posted by Publius:
In all seriousness, could someone explain to me what is meant by the idea that Ford's pardon of Nixon fostered "national healing"?

As far as I can tell, "national healing" necessary because the electorate didn't want to come to grips with the fact that it had been bamboozled by a gang of criminals. It achieved this "national healing" by sweeping the whole matter under the rug and moving on as though everything else was perfectly normal.

The practical effect of this "national healing" was twofold. First, it reinforced Nixon's "imperial presidency," sending a clear signal that the President and his cronies were above the law--that the individual and partisan interests of the President and his advisors were indistinguishable from the interests of the United States. Second, it let the nation wallow in the pleasant fiction that this problem had been excised with Nixon himself, when in fact the problem was (and remains) much more deeply entrenched within certain quarters of national politics.

It doesn't seem like an accident that the criminals responsible for Iran-Contra in the next decade got away with it, retaining positions as respected and influential right-wing political figures. Nor does it seem like an accident that these old Iran-Contra figures have spent the last five years influencing a presidential administration headed by men (Rumsfeld and Cheney) who began consolidating their power under Ford.

"National healing" isn't healthy if its purpose is just to pretend that a lingering national cancer no longer exists. If that wasn't what "national healing" was really about, then what did Ford's pardon of Nixon actually accomplish?

To me the people claiming the pardon promoted "healing" are being pretty delusional.

How can anyone have closure knowing a criminal got away without punishment?

It reminds me of the attitude of a wife who was told by her daughter one day "Daddy's been molesting me."

So the wife decides to keep it quiet and forgive the guy because, hey, a public trial would cause the family even more grief.

And not too surprisingly, Daddy keeps visiting little Susie every night. Some "healing."

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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Publius:
What's wrong with revisionism? The whole point of history is to critically evaluate past decisions, and to reevaluate them as new information and perspectives become available, in order to make (hopefully, maybe, slightly) better decisions in the future.

That's not revisionism though is it?

ETA: Or at least it's not what I meant by my use of the term. It is one thing to look back on history and re-evaluate, quite another to look back and speculate (essentially make stuff up) about what you think would have happened differently if different choices were made.

--------------------
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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Publius
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
Nixon was the unindicted co-conspirator. It was widely believed that he was unindicted because he was the sitting president. Once he was no longer president, there would have been a great deal of pressure to indict him. That would have started the whole process up again, a process that would have likely dragged on for quite a while. And truth be told, it would have further divided the country because many people simply didn't want to see a former president in jail. Many people believed that making him leave office in disgrace was punishment enough.

Right, I know. I understand that the pardon was a way for the public to move on to things besides Watergate. I just think that, actually, Watergate really was a very big deal, and the nation would've been well-served if people actually acknowledged that it was a big deal that could take a long time to work through. I know that lots of people didn't want to see a former President in jail: I'm saying that they should've been persuaded to accept a former President in jail, or been forced to see a former President in jail anyway, because it's more important to make the point that Presidents aren't above the law than it is to make sure that certain segments of the public always get what they want.

There's always going to be political division in this country. When important issues are at stake, that political division is going to be extremely bitter. Some principles are more important than temporarily "healing" that political division, especially when that "healing" is accomplished by simply surrendering to the ideological demands of a certain faction on an important issue like the rule of law.

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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
So why did you guess I "just had to be there," Sara?

I don't doubt the country needed Watergate to be over; I contend that the solution Ford offered, ultimately, didn't solve anything.

I said it because you clearly don't understand that pardoning Nixon ended Watergate.

I "clearly" don't? I have said that it did end Watergate. I have said that it wasn't the best end of it.


No, what you want if for there to have been more than just an end to Watergate. You want "ending Watergate" to be something more than just ending Watergate. You want it to have been a reform movement to correct all the ills of the political process. That wasn't what it was about. It was about ending Watergate, not preventing another one. No matter what you think should have happened, ending it then is what the country needed.

quote:
quote:
Therefore Ford's solution did exactly what it was suppose to do: it ended Watergate. It ended that distraction. Anything else it was suppose to "solve" is revisionist history.
Did you actually read anything I posted before? That the pardoning was supposed to solve anything else isn't my argument. There were better solutions to Watergate and, more importantly and lastingly, to the much larger, much more harmful problem of campaign financing. And *that* has been my argument.
Yeah, I read it. That's when I started thinking maybe you just had to be there.

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

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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quote:
Originally posted by Christie:
quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
Did you actually read anything I posted before? That the pardoning was supposed to solve anything else isn't my argument. There were better solutions to Watergate and, more importantly and lastingly, to the much larger, much more harmful problem of campaign financing. And *that* has been my argument.

But this is revisionism in a way isn't it? Hindsight is 20/20 and all that. I'm sure most of us would love to turn back our own personal clocks and make different choices at certain key points in our lives, trusting that a different choice would mean a different life down the road. It's no more likely to be true for those personal life choices though than it would be for different choices made in the political arena. We can never really know for certain what would be different (in a positive way) in 2006 if a different course of action had been pursued in 1974.
I don't think that is revisionism. I'm not trying to rewrite history.

I am speculating what might have happened had a different path been taken.

--------------------
"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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educatedindian
I Saw Three Shipments


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quote:
[/qb]
Yeah, everyone's opinion is equal, I know, I know. Cardinal rule of snopes. Right. I forgot.[/QB][/QUOTE]

Actually I thought the cardinal rule of snopes is you provide evidence for what you say. All you've done is get more and more evasive (and sometimes a little insulting) when you can't answer someone's points with evidence.

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
So why did you guess I "just had to be there," Sara?

I don't doubt the country needed Watergate to be over; I contend that the solution Ford offered, ultimately, didn't solve anything.

I said it because you clearly don't understand that pardoning Nixon ended Watergate.

I "clearly" don't? I have said that it did end Watergate. I have said that it wasn't the best end of it.


No, what you want if for there to have been more than just an end to Watergate. You want "ending Watergate" to be something more than just ending Watergate.


Please resist trying to speak for me, okay? If you want to know what I think, please ask.

quote:
You want it to have been a reform movement to correct all the ills of the political process.

By "it" are you talking about the pardon? If so, then no, that isn't what I wanted "it" to be about. I wanted a reform movement to correct at least the ills caused by campaign financing. As I have said, the pardon was not the tool to build that movement.

quote:
That wasn't what it was about. It was about ending Watergate, not preventing another one. No matter what you think should have happened, ending it then is what the country needed.

Again, if by "it" you mean the pardon, then I don't disagree with you about its intent. Nor have I ever.


quote:
quote:
Therefore Ford's solution did exactly what it was suppose to do: it ended Watergate. It ended that distraction. Anything else it was suppose to "solve" is revisionist history.
Did you actually read anything I posted before? That the pardoning was supposed to solve anything else isn't my argument. There were better solutions to Watergate and, more importantly and lastingly, to the much larger, much more harmful problem of campaign financing. And *that* has been my argument.
Yeah, I read it. That's when I started thinking maybe you just had to be there. [/QB][/QUOTE]
Yes, I understand that nobody else could possibly know as much about it as you, Sara. Is it possible for you to, perhaps, explain why?

--------------------
"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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Publius
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Christie:
quote:
Originally posted by Publius:
What's wrong with revisionism? The whole point of history is to critically evaluate past decisions, and to reevaluate them as new information and perspectives become available, in order to make (hopefully, maybe, slightly) better decisions in the future.

That's not revisionism though is it?
Well, strictly speaking, historical revisionism is just the process by which people use new information to revise old understandings of past events. Think of it as the process by which "current events" gradually becomes "history," I guess.
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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by educatedindian:
How can anyone have closure knowing a criminal got away without punishment?


Look, no one wanted Nixon in jail more than I did. I loathed the man and had for years before Watergate. But I know the man was punished. He resigned the presidency of the United States in disgrace. He was hated and mocked. His name was darkened forever. Don't for a second believe the man wasn't punished. He didn't go to jail, he wasn't convicted, but he was punished.

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

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snapdragonfly
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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by educatedindian:
How can anyone have closure knowing a criminal got away without punishment?


Look, no one wanted Nixon in jail more than I did. I loathed the man and had for years before Watergate. But I know the man was punished. He resigned the presidency of the United States in disgrace. He was hated and mocked. His name was darkened forever. Don't for a second believe the man wasn't punished. He didn't go to jail, he wasn't convicted, but he was punished.

I believe he was punished. I too, would like to have seen him in jail, but for a man with such ambition and paranoia and dreams of power to end his political career in disgrace surpassing anything in the history of the US, was much more than a slap on the wrist. Perhaps he deserved even more - (for putting himself above the law, which I can think of other presidents (cough *W* cough) who are getting away with doing the same, arguably worse, and nothing much is happening to them except losing some approval points)~ but he did not go entirely unpunished. He was disgraced and humiliated in front of the entire world and for a man of his hubris, there can't be much worse, I don't think.

After Ford pardoned him, it still took some time for us to quit being preoccupied with the whole mess. (no wonder everyone took up the good times attitude of the 80's - the 70's were pretty rough.) Even several years later he was still the butt of jokes and I don't mean in a friendly joke kind of way.

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"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(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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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by educatedindian:
Actually I thought the cardinal rule of snopes is you provide evidence for what you say. All you've done is get more and more evasive (and sometimes a little insulting) when you can't answer someone's points with evidence.

You know, if someone wants to talk about USA foreign policy during the Cold War, they ought to know something about USA foreign policy during the Cold War. Anyone who doesn't know about it should be asking questions, not making statements. But what is it that you want evidence for?? I haven't said anything that isn't common knowledge....or should be.

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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:

Yes, I understand that nobody else could possibly know as much about it as you, Sara. Is it possible for you to, perhaps, explain why?

Lots of people know more about it than I do. Lots. Just because I know more than you doesn't mean I think no one knows more than me. Not even close.

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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.

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Sylvanz
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I think the problem here (and what Sara is trying to get at) is most of us here who are sorta/kinda/not really defending the pardon were of an age then to remember. The hearings dragged on day after day forever with dirty laundry of all sorts being aired. I loathed Nixon and could not understand with all the bitterness of a teenager why he was elected. He was a shifty, creepy, scary man and we elected him to our eventual dismay and shame.

I was outraged when he was pardoned, I still suspect that there was a deal made to make Ford president in exchange for the pardon, we will probably never know. I would have loved to see Nixon in a prison cell. I would have loved to see his henchmen (Liddy in particular) spend longer and harder time than they did, but it didn't happen. I understand why people think, in retrospect, that the pardon was more good than bad. Watergate needed to stop. By the time Nixon was pardoned we had spent as a nation an inordinate amount of time, money, and attention on something that in the perspective of the time was less important than other matters.

Maybe things would be different now if we had tried, convicted, and jailed him, but then again maybe things would not. Maybe things would be worse. The fact is we don't know and can never know. I do know though that at the time Watergate had made the country tired, raw, and in great need of respite. We also needed to address things that were far more important than Nixon. We boosted him out of the seat of power. Perhaps we should have done more, but for the psyche of the time, as galling as it was, it had to be enough.

Ford? He, I guess, is not a bad person. Not bad in the sense of Nixon or ermmmm...other presidents I can think of. He would never have made the office in any other way because he was really rather insignificant. Don't get me started on how this state revers a guy who lived here briefly, moved away to warmer climes as soon as he could, and never came back. [Roll Eyes]

P&LL, Syl

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Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. — Voltaire

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Christie
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Sylvanz:
I think the problem here (and what Sara is trying to get at) is most of us here who are sorta/kinda/not really defending the pardon were of an age then to remember. The hearings dragged on day after day forever with dirty laundry of all sorts being aired. I loathed Nixon and could not understand with all the bitterness of a teenager why he was elected. He was a shifty, creepy, scary man and we elected him to our eventual dismay and shame.

What I find truly scary now is that there are people out there trying to whitewash the man and turn him into some kind of hero. The "Watergate wasn't so bad and he did go to China" brigade. Interestingly, the only people I personally know who pull this kind of revisionist crap are people who are getting their history from carefully chosen books - not the people who lived it in front of the nightly news.

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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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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:

Yes, I understand that nobody else could possibly know as much about it as you, Sara. Is it possible for you to, perhaps, explain why?

Lots of people know more about it than I do. Lots. Just because I know more than you doesn't mean I think no one knows more than me. Not even close.
That really isn't an explanation about why you think you know more about it than I do. You're simply restating what you've stated a few times already.

I would love to actually discuss with you, though, the points I have made.

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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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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
I would love to actually discuss with you, though, the points I have made.

I'm not sure what points you think you have made. You expressed your ideas of how you think the ending of Watergate should have been handled based on..... whatever. Those of us who were old enough to be aware of the state of the nation at the time of Nixon's resignation have, to a person, stated that even though we disagreed at the time with the decision to pardon, in retrospect Ford was right. Those who believe that things should have been done differently weren't old enough to have understood the state of the nation, if they were even alive. Yet, they have no qualms about telling those of us who lived through it that we are wrong.

But hey, what do we know???

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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.

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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Of course not everybody alive and aware then agrees with you, Sara.

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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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Steve
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Christie:
[Confused] This was your initial post in this thread:

quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
I don't see how Ford's reputation for decency squares with his OKing of the Indonesian invasion of East Timor.


Which is a far cry from saying that the East Timor invasion was the result of some sort of personality flaw. It's not like I was arguing that the guy was grumpy, so he figured why not, let's arm Indonesia.
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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
Of course not everybody alive and aware then agrees with you, Sara.

Of course. Do you think that's even worth pointing that out? Wouldn't it be a first time in history if everyone agreed on something?

But even your smarmy little find only says
quote:
Permanent Washington believes the Nixon pardon was an act of martyrdom, a necessary gesture allowing the country to move on—even Bob Woodward thinks so—but, in fact, the American system of government was sturdy enough to withstand any prosecution of Richard Nixon.
You must have missed that we weren't talking about "the American system of government" but about the national psyche. Yeah, the government would have survived, no one says it wouldn't have. In fact, we took great pride in the fact that we peacefully and legal removed a corrupt head of state. But the people were tired, exhausted from the turmoil of Vietnam and Watergate. The people needed to be allowed to wake up from "the long national nightmare".

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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.

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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
quote:
Originally posted by Christie:
[Confused] This was your initial post in this thread:

quote:
Originally posted by Steve:
I don't see how Ford's reputation for decency squares with his OKing of the Indonesian invasion of East Timor.


Which is a far cry from saying that the East Timor invasion was the result of some sort of personality flaw. It's not like I was arguing that the guy was grumpy, so he figured why not, let's arm Indonesia.
You were saying he wasn't a decent man because he didn't object to Indonesia's invasion of East Timor. Is not being a decent man not a personality flaw?

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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.

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
Of course not everybody alive and aware then agrees with you, Sara.

Of course. Do you think that's even worth pointing that out? Wouldn't it be a first time in history if everyone agreed on something?

Except you said
quote:
Those of us who were old enough to be aware of the state of the nation at the time of Nixon's resignation have, to a person, stated that even though we disagreed at the time with the decision to pardon, in retrospect Ford was right.
So, your whole "to a person" thing was wrong.

quote:
But even your smarmy little find only says
quote:
Permanent Washington believes the Nixon pardon was an act of martyrdom, a necessary gesture allowing the country to move on—even Bob Woodward thinks so—but, in fact, the American system of government was sturdy enough to withstand any prosecution of Richard Nixon.
You must have missed that we weren't talking about "the American system of government" but about the national psyche. Yeah, the government would have survived, no one says it wouldn't have. In fact, we took great pride in the fact that we peacefully and legal removed a corrupt head of state. But the people were tired, exhausted from the turmoil of Vietnam and Watergate. The people needed to be allowed to wake up from "the long national nightmare".
Yes, Sara, I know that. I think there was a better tool to do the job. Which has been the point I have been making.

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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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Sara at home
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quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
quote:
Originally posted by AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr:
Of course not everybody alive and aware then agrees with you, Sara.

Of course. Do you think that's even worth pointing that out? Wouldn't it be a first time in history if everyone agreed on something?

Except you said
quote:
Those of us who were old enough to be aware of the state of the nation at the time of Nixon's resignation have, to a person, stated that even though we disagreed at the time with the decision to pardon, in retrospect Ford was right.
So, your whole "to a person" thing was wrong.

Oh crap. I was referring to those of us who posted on this board. You should have picked that up from the "stated" part. Must I name names for you? Give me a break from that incessant attempt at word parsing you resort to to prove you are right when that's all you have.

quote:
quote:
But even your smarmy little find only says
quote:
Permanent Washington believes the Nixon pardon was an act of martyrdom, a necessary gesture allowing the country to move on - even Bob Woodward thinks so - but, in fact, the American system of government was sturdy enough to withstand any prosecution of Richard Nixon.
You must have missed that we weren't talking about "the American system of government" but about the national psyche. Yeah, the government would have survived, no one says it wouldn't have. In fact, we took great pride in the fact that we peacefully and legal removed a corrupt head of state. But the people were tired, exhausted from the turmoil of Vietnam and Watergate. The people needed to be allowed to wake up from "the long national nightmare".
Yes, Sara, I know that. I think there was a better tool to do the job. Which has been the point I have been making.
What tool to do what job? What the hell are you talking about and why, then, post something that doesn't address your alleged point? You wanted a trial.
quote:
I think that a trial would've gotten the attention of those who would cheat at elections, and, perhaps, real, substantive campaign finance reforms would have occurred because of it.
A trial would not have brought the immediate end to the Watergate Era. It would have dragged things out even longer causing more pain and distraction for the country. You wanted not the end of Watergate but campaign finance reform, the attention of those who would cheat at elections (assuming you mean people other than those members of the Nixon adminstration in prison). You want punishment, retribution, deterence. We wanted peace and calm.

Your tool is a trial; your job is campaign finance reform and deterence of future political corruption. That's not the job the nation needed done in 1974. The job we needed done was the end to Watergate.

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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.

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educatedindian
I Saw Three Shipments


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quote:
Originally posted by Sara Claus at home:
[ I know the man was punished. He resigned the presidency of the United States in disgrace. He was hated and mocked. His name was darkened forever. Don't for a second believe the man wasn't punished. He didn't go to jail, he wasn't convicted, but he was punished.

My heart is bleeding all over the floor for all the "punishment" Nixon got.

Public disgrace, yeah, I'm sure the Cambodians were satisfied by that, and thought it was just punishment for killing 600,000 of them and putting in power Pol Pot, who killed over a million more.

Only a few years later David Frost paid him millions for an interview.

It's a shame the Son of Sam law wasn't in effect yet, to keep him profiting from the misery he inflicted on others.

And within a decade the press decided he'd been "rehabilitated" and turned to him as an elder statesman. The media should come in for their share of the blame.

I'm sure the family of every 17 year old who does 5 to 20 years of hard time for robbing a convenience store thinks public disgrace is just fine and dandy for "punishment."

Excuse me if I save my sympathy for the more deserving, but Nixon's case is almost a perfect example of class bias in our legal system.

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