As he pardoned Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford said, ,"Our long national nightmare is over."
Ford pardoned Nixon for exactly the wrong reason and did not want anyone to know about it until after his death. Those were his orders. Ford gave little thought to what would actually be best for America, it turns out. Jerry Ford pardoned Nixon because... "He was my friend."
So Richard Nixon, who felt that the president was above the law, had exactly two friends on earth...One was the criminal, Bebe Rebozo, and the other was Jerry Ford.
But there is a problem with nightmares...America went back to sleep and found that nightmares, like evil regimes, can repeat themselves.
The Viet Nam War killed part of the soul of America in addition to the 60,000 actual dead and 300,000 wounded American troops. Every person in America lost something in that war, whether it was a personal friend or the personal trust in our government. Most of us lost both.
Now, as we toss in our sleep and the year 2006 extinguishes itself, we watch ourselves twisting in the horror of our new "National Nightmare"...Only there is a difference...a tragic difference. In the first one, Richard Nixon was our President. He was very intelligent, thoughtful, and thoroughly disliked and deeply evil.
Today we have a worse war with less purpose and greater and more tragic consequences in the long run for America... and in George W, Bush, we have a President much like Richard Nixon...but with none of Nixon's good qualities.
Peace and Happy New Year!
Saddam is Dead:
New Year's resolutions?