I don’t know, maybe I ought to stop reading the news. Maybe I should bury my head in the sand. Pretend it all doesn’t exist. Ignore it all.
Too much is making me too mad. To wit: conservative columnist George Will referred the other day to the plot hatched by Richard M. Nixon in the fall of 1968 to sabotage the peace negotiations among this holy land and the two Vietnams, North and South.
The story of how Nixon, going through intermediaries Henry Kissinger and Anna (the Dragon Lady) Chennault succeeded in influencing the South Vietnamese not to okay a pending peace deal until after that year’s presidential election. Nixon won that fall, in part, because he’d promised a secret peace deal of his own This ugly tale long has been accepted as gospel by many historians.
Nixon apologists for just as long have said those who told that story were nuts. Now they can’t deny it anymore, not when one of the Near Right’s own, George Will, mentions it casually as if he were talking about Nixon’s ski nose or Kissinger’s way with blonde women. Recently released records, notes, and FBI files confirm the story. Some 20,000 US military personnel as well as several hundred thousand Vietnamese, both military and civilian, were killed following nixon’s now-verified machinations.
Oh, and the people of the US continued to be torn apart by the war (as well as poverty, racism, and a host of other ills that ran hand in hand with Vietnam.)
In other words, Nixon felt it worth perhaps a quarter of a million lives to get elected president. And he didn’t really care that the American people were taking sides — sometimes murderously — against each other. In fact, he capitalized on that schism. Nixon beat Democratic candidate Hubert Humphrey that fall by only a touch more than half a million votes.
And the funny thing is, that’s not what’s driving my anger over this story. What is making me livid is that four years later, American voters reelected Nixon with the fourth-highest margin in US history.
So we returned to office in a landslide a man who at various times engaged in a criminal conspiracy, violated campaign finance laws, illegally attempted to use the FBI to harass political opponents, acted in contempt of Congress, and — we now know for certain — committed an act of treason.
Then as now, we hardly deserve to flatter ourselves by calling this nation a democracy.
Just to make my position clear, I hold that it’s irrelevant whether or not Michael Brown strong-armed that convenience store guy moments before he was killed.
Screenshot From NBC News
1) The officer who whacked had not been informed a young man resembling Brown was a suspect
2) Stealing a box of cigars is not a capital offense
Are we clear?
Let’s hope the new Bloomington Transit center at Walnut and 3rd streets improves bus service, helps the transit authority save money and gasoline, helps clear our air, relieves traffic snarls, heals the sick, comforts the poor, and is the final step toward achieving world peace because, otherwise, that son of a buck is one ugly edifice.
Photo: Jeremy Hogan/Herald Times
The place opens Monday (paywall) at 6:00pm.