sam's notes

notes on government, sports and popular culture

Thursday, September 02, 2004

 
As you could probably tell by my earlier post, I’m fascinated with the fact that Schwarzenegger evoked Nixon during his speech Tuesday night.

I’m surprised that someone along the line didn’t advise him to drop the Nixon reference, considering the fact this was the night Republicans were bringing out the moderates. Does Nixon not represent the worst of our country, no matter his true achievements? When the academics finish writing history, Bush could very well emerge as the Great Republican Satan. But for now, Tricky Dick still holds the title. Don’t ever try to make the point in mixed company that Nixon did anything good for this country.

Which is tough, because I’m a Nixon apologist. Even though I was just a kid when he was president, I liked the guy.. I remember waiting in line with my parents at the fire station to vote in 1972. I went into the voting booth with my dad and watched him pull down the McGovern lever. I didn’t say anything, but I was pulling for Nixon.

I felt sorry for him when he resigned 30 years ago last month. I can’t shake the pity, though I try by exposing myself to the reality of the events through books and documentaries. My defense: As the ultimate insider, Nixon didn’t do anything he hadn’t seen before.

My theory: perhaps Schwarzenegger is so thankful for the inspiration Nixon provided that he, like me, might be willing to overlook his crimes. Then again, to a guy who grew up in a socialist country “where Soviet soldiers could take a man out of his own car and ship him off to the Soviet Union for slave labor,” perhaps Nixon’s crimes weren’t that heinous.

Somebody help me out here…..



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