Another birthday – Nixon at 100

Yes, I know. Dead.

For all his darkness – and that ran deep – Richard Nixon was an intriguing president. I think I’ve read half a dozen biographies (ssshhhh, don’t tell anyone); hell, I’ve even read a few of his own books. He was a fine writer and that, in my little book of life, forgives many other sins.

nixonMr. William Shakespeare would have loved the guy but they didn’t share a timeline. For anyone interested, the best Nixon book I ever read – in fact one of the best contemporary histories – is Nixonland by Rick Perlstein. Simply terrific book. Highly recommended, if you have a free weekend.

14 responses to “Another birthday – Nixon at 100

  1. Poor Tricky Dick, creator of the EPA. He wouldn’t have fit in with the Tea Party at all and his Quaker upbringing would have clashed with the NRA. He must be spinning in his grave!

    Like

    • Jim, he not only wouldn’t fit with the Tea Party, he’d not even make it as an electable Republican.
      All things said though, the man gavve us the EPA. Just like Bush I gave us the Clean Air/Water act both of which were amazing and effective.

      Like

  2. Definitely one of the most intriguing political personalities in our life time. Up then down then up then down then up … Wow!

    Like

  3. I just watched Frost, Nixon the other night. Interesting and entertaining movie. 🙂

    Like

    • T4T – I remember them both so well and I thought that movie was point perfect. Frank Langella captured Nixon exactly.

      Like

      • @Moe

        While I was watching that movie my gut told me that Nixon gave Frost the moment. Funny thing about guilt sometimes is that it rears its head in the most peculiar of ways.

        Like

  4. As a foreigner I have to say that he was more respected abroad than he was at home. Incidentally is his portrait back on the wall at Florida’s Disney’s “Hall of Presidents”? Whenever I visited on days off when on business trips to Forida he was never there! Various excuses were given but it seemed that (at Disney at least) Tricky Dicky had become a non person airbrushed out of Disney’s history!

    Like

    • Well if that’s true David, it’s just silly. If we had to remove all the dark ones from the history of just Western Civilization, not much would be left!

      Like

  5. He’d be much to liberal in terms of policy for the GOP now. The EPA; a health insurance reform (proposed, but not enacted); the endangered species act among others. No Republican today could advocate any of those things.

    Like

    • Absolutely not. And interesting bruce that you metion his efforts wth health insurance reform – most presidentss have been trying that since the early 1900’s – after Otto Von Bismark instituted universal health care in the frackin’ 1880’s! = and they all ffailed until Obama. And as imperfect as his law is, it’s a start at least.

      Like

  6. He also advocated the Family Assistance Plan. It was in effect a limited guranteed income. Milton Friedman advocated the negative income tax, that would have been much the same. Conservatives then tended to support or at least not in principle oppose policy with the aim being a safety net for the poor. The argument was about degrees and means to do so. Today the whole concept of government alleviating poverty except maybe for the very disabled seems like an anathema on the right. The disagreement about basically what would be a good society seems much deeper now.

    Like

  7. By the way, I was a Nixon supporter in those days. I remember setting the living room after doing some farm work as a strapping 18 year old, watching in shock and dejection as then President for a only a short time longer in the face of the reality that could no longer be denied after the tapes that he would resign. I wonder what might have been if there had been no Watergate scandel.

    Like

    • Bruce, I think if Watergate hadn’t happened, Nixon would have been a hugely successful two term prez.. But that ‘darkness’ of his – it was always there, well before Watergate and that would have prevented his ever being called one of the ‘greats’..

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s