534 Comments
Aug 25, 2023Liked by Robert Reich

You hit the nail on the head about this nation’s failure to hold Nixon accountable! Never forget that Nixon walked away from his crimes with a full and unconditional pardon, but men were assessed prison terms ranging from 9 months to 20 years for obeying his unlawful orders. Gerald Ford made a monumental mistake in pardoning Tricky Dick. I would go father in saying that Jimmy Carter grievously erred in commuting the 20-year sentence of G. Gordon Liddy to time served. Liddy was an absolutely evil and unrepentant man who was willing to kill for Nixon. Twenty years were a small price to pay for this fiend.

In Trump, we have something far worse than Nixon. Nixon used the government as a means to satisfy his own vendettas, but Trump tried to overthrow it. Nixon said that he believed in the death penalty, but Trump has vowed to expand it and revive hanging and the firing squad, expanding not only the range of its application but the degree of its cruelty. Trump has not disguised his craving to become a dictator. He deserves to spend the remainder of his life behind bars.

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As I said above, worse, we know Nixon was a traitor. War criminal.

This is treason. Hard evidence. https://millercenter.org/the-presidency/educational-resources/this-is-treason https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/02/us/politics/nixon-tried-to-spoil-johnsons-vietnam-peace-talks-in-68-notes-show.html#:~:text=Haldeman's%20notes%20appear%20to%20confirm,lives%2C%E2%80%9D%20said%20John%20A.

Nixon the war criminal. Nixon secretly bombed Cambodia. The massive carpet-bombing of the Cambodian countryside caused hundreds of thousands of deaths and increased peasant support for the murderous Pol Pot. It helped facilitate the genocide that occurred later in Cambodia.

Nixon and Kissinger made no secret of their dislike of the democratically elected government of Salvador Allende in Chile. Through economic pressure and CIA activities, this government was overthrown, and the right-wing dictator, Pinochet, was brought to power. Thousands of students, intellectuals, union organizers and, in general, people who tried to help the poor were arrested, tortured and killed. Watergate, which receives nearly all the publicity, is really a small incident in comparison to these events. In a sane and decent society, instead of being lionized in death by the media, Richard Nixon should have been tried while still living for the tremendous crimes against humanity in both Cambodia and Chile! --Gary Sudborough

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You're right, our problem is that the President has essentially the same power as King George III, see my comment. Our problem is that we continue to bicker over who would make a good King President - just look at all the losers on stage Wednesday - while we should be questioning the need for the office in the first place.

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Very disturbing that any one man should have so much political power in a nation of over 300 million: in what is a so-called "democracy". Majoritarian 'democracies" are in any case not truly democratic: only proportional representation can deliver real democracy. Add an unaccountable president, above the law, plus the unfettered power of money via lobbying, the result cannot be called democracy. It's government by oligarchy: by rich and powerful men.

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Tribalism, Trust, Love, Over Reach: Two of the 3 Branches are based on Emotions that are based on what? All court fees and Mediation is free and successful 75%.

Judges and courtroom debates are laws and facts. Emotions may have driven me to court but they're best left outside. The debates in the judiciary are a Check on the emotionality of the other two branches. Subscribe for details 😁

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The Republican Party is TRYING to establish the office of the American presidency as a de facto King, but that’s not what it IS — or at least not what it was designed to be. Three segments of government, each with checks and balances over the others … That can’t be what brings a King into being, if checks and balances actually exist.

But, de jure and de facto sometimes diverge.

Our Constitution was not and is not perfect, we all know. But it’s better than no constitution. Seriously, OUR constitution IS better than no constitution, or would anyone argue with me on that?

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Oh and in regard to the Constitution, yes I would argue with you. It did well for 50 years, in setting up the Republic and fusing disparate states into a union. Now it is an anachronism. IMHO, the problem is that it's considered by many to be lapidary (including you by the sound of it). And the problem with THAT is the problem with language in general (as Shakespeare pointed out in Julius Caesar) - that language is always open to interpretation. So, for example, you have 5 SCOTUS judges who state that abortion is unconstitutional and 4 who state that it's not.

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Don’t be ridiculous. If our constitution were cast in stone, it wouldn’t have so many amendments, and we would not seek to amend it again, which many of us are … You clearly have NO clue what people of some nuance and circumspection might think.

What I worry about, sir, is trying to start all over again, after throwing out everything we have because we don’t like some of it. Revolutions RARELY produce what they’re after ….they typically wind up with someone taking advantage of the chaos to establish an autocracy or military rule.

Just get a little bit pragmatic, folks. A little teeny bit … and figure out what will ACTUALLY work in our world, instead of what our Utopia demands … or is it just that we have to have purity thought for some of you guys?

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Pat: you're right, the Framers didn't intend the Constitution to be lapidary, they were practical lawyers who realized that there would have to be amendments. The problem is that, starting in the mid 1950s - perhaps in part because of rivalry with the USSR - American schoolchildren began to be taught in such a way that they would come to think of the Constitution as something essentially written in stone. This might go some way to explaining why there have been no Amendments in over 30 years (the 27th Amendment was actually an old Amendment about Congressional pay, from 1789, which in itself illustrates the difficulty of getting any Amendment passed; and the 26th Amendment was from 60 years ago - I seriously doubt the Framers would have approved of such a paucity of Amendments).

So yes, I agree in principle with having a Constitution, as opposed to case law, but only when it is relatively straightforward to make amendments, which IMHO it manifestly is not. And things are not helped by having the current "originalists" on SCOTUS who regard their job as trying to discern what the Framers were thinking, as if this really matters in the modern era. Remember, the Framers were men, not gods, and in particular they were wealthy, slave-owning white Englishmen, who did not regard women or black men as equals.

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As a writer and editor, I agree about language being open to interpretation, for the most part. Another factor to keep in mind is that phraseology in 1787 was not the same as today, which second amendment fetishists ignore. But that's another discussion.

Regarding abortion, the 5-4 split you cite doesn't have much to do with the wording of the Constitution, IMO. It's more about deliberately twisting meanings to suit a religious agenda.

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"The 5-4 split you cite doesn't have much to do with the wording of the Constitution, IMO. It's more about deliberately twisting meanings to suit a religious agenda."

But that's key issue, surely. Language is always open to interpretation. Brutus says one thing and the mob says "yeah, the guy's got a point," and they resist Antony initially. But, after Antony makes essentially the opposite argument, the mob says, "yeah, the guy's got a point." And they go to war.

Kurt Godel demonstrated in 1930, using mathematics, that mathematics is incomplete. If mathematics is incomplete, then what can be said about human language?

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See my comment below. While I agree, the Framers obviously didn't want George III back, IMHO they ended up keeping him. They gave the President the same kingly powers that King George had: 1) The power of veto, 2) the power to raise armies for 60 days without the consent of Parliament (Which George III used to put armies into America in 1776 and which Kennedy used to start the Vietnam War), 3) The power of executive privilege (which Trump used without limit) and 4) the power of pardon, which Ford used to exonerate the criminal Nixon.

George Mason pointed out the similarity between the King and the President, but was voted down, because the Framers believed the check and balances would restrain the President. Well, they barely restrained Nixon, and they have completely failed to restrain Trump.

So, they did decide to keep the king figure, even though we can now see that it was unnecessary. The only question is why? And I think the answer is that they lived in an age where all the most powerful countries had a king, so they assumed a king figure was required. Now we can see that the king was a concept on the road to an advanced society rather than a requirement.

It's interesting to me that some of the most advanced countries in the world (for example, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Netherlands, UK and Japan) kept their king-emperors but marginalized them by putting them in golden cages. Sadly, we have kept ours, frozen into the Constitution (you asked), an anachronism exemplified by Trump.

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founding

Kings belonged in a prescientific era. This is a whole other perspective. When Copernicus and Galileo took Earth out of the center of the universe, where Earth's domination went well with a king concept, eventually we got to democracy. Interestingly, we are on the verge of the next big shift where the Hubble telescope showed us we aren't on a dead rock in a stable universe but that everything is alive and expanding, including us. In scientific fact we are one humanity in our process of evolution where we are at the top of the evolutionary chain with our self-awareness. We are sacred creatures, of the Earth and not just on it, and here to be custodians of our home. The Constitution better be a very fluid document so we keep translating its underlying idealistic principles to what matches the current knowledge we have.

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Aug 25, 2023·edited Aug 25, 2023

Suzanne, you've said several things that need to be unpacked.

1) "Kings belonged in a prescientific era. " I agree, however the reality is that we still have kings, in America, in this scientific era.

2) "Copernicus and Galileo took Earth out of the center of the universe, where Earth's domination went well with a king concept, eventually we got to democracy." I would say that democracy began long before Copernicus, in Greece before 300 BC, before Socrates was executed, in Norway and Denmark around 1000 AD, and in England, with the Magna Carta in 1215 AD. In other words, these beginnings occurred before it was definitively accepted that the Earth is not necessarily at the center of things, so there is something else involved.

3) We knew that the Earth wasn't a dead rock, long before Hubble.

4) I don't think we are necessarily at the top of the evolutionary chain - dolphins and whales may have a better claim, but even if we are, the average human thinking is still that of an animal, and of the pack society: Copernicus, Galileo and Newton just helped us lift our heads out of the gutter once in a while.

5) I agree about the need for a fluid Constitution, but am skeptical - this may be a contradiction in terms.

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Excellent contrast to Denmark. Danes trot out their royalty, put them on display, and then put them away again. It is so . . . civilized!

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Aug 26, 2023·edited Aug 26, 2023

Some of 'The Framers', or to me at least, the more appropriate, quite patriarchal, 'Founding Fathers' (since they truly believed that women had no rights), actually desired to make General Washington (a FULL ON, unrestrained at all) KING of this land after his vanquishing of the Red Coats (funny how the despots always seem to pick that color).

Thankfully (regardless of how we actually view/treat our POTUSes), they were totally shot down, most vociferously and vehemently by George himself. ;)

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We need a king-like figure to represent us overseas, and we need a top signature on our ongoing legislature in order to recognize and seal a particular consensus. The founders actually found a few things for our president to do, but in the early days he was either a touchstone (George Washington, etc.) or a member of the government bureaucracy, and a first-rate politician who knew how to channel through all the confusion in the Houses of Congress in order to find the consensus thread with which to compose and finalize the new law. In no way did the founders want this government office to ever become anything close to monarchy.

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"In no way did the founders want this government office to ever become anything close to monarchy."

I agree, unfortunately, as we see, they failed.

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Our Constitution is a nearly perfect document, if it weren't for the poor spelling. It's open-ended. It allows for change and admits its imperfection. It divides the concentration of power throughout its three branches, so that no-one can actually hold all the power of government at one time, as a dictator would attempt to do. The American Constitution was the first of its kind, from the super rational thought and philosophy of the late 17th Century, during the beginning of the European revolutionary period, 1640s-1918 (four major revolutions: English,, French, American, Russian). The Spanish named our Constitution "liberale" or "liberal." For many decades past, the Constitution was understood to be a "liberal" document. Liberalism is seated in the last good grace of the monarchical system. It's the last form of government that's actually still possible under monarchy. It means, take care of the middle class so they won't make trouble, and take care of the poor because Jesus insists. We got liberalism because many European royals were afraid their families would have their heads cut off in public if they didn't show more empathy and distribute more wealth to that public. Liberalism is the last buffer before you get to socialism. It allows rampant capitalism, which, in its inevitable way, is a new form of monarchy. "Money and monarchy," my socialist pinko college history teacher was always preaching.

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100% agree with this. I argue that we don’t need to worry about the candidates but rather LISTEN to the message they offer, break the illusions (eg King President) and look to have real change in our country

https://unorthodoxy.substack.com/p/why-we-should-appreciate-desantis

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I watched a few minutes of that rubbish debate. Good luck with any of that lot !!!

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The loudest, and most prolifically 'present' (as well as the most ferociously attacked on that stage) of that motley lot is nothing more than a wannabe hardcore, even MORE fascist than Modi, Modi. ;)

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founding

not sure I agree. Here, the power is with Congress, unfortunately, just like the electorate, they are too divided (by design) to pass anything substantive for the common good. They are also, to varying degrees, beholden to the oligarchs/plutocrats who's money they have to depend on to run for and remain in office. The President has only limited unilateral power.

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Leftie, oh, it's the Democrats, huh! It's not the Dems who have tried to overturn our Constitution or ignore a president's right to nominate judges and justices. You all know that. I guess jumping in with "it's the Democrats that . . . ." is easy although not true, but it does match the beliefs of the Trump set, and a few others.

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Ruth;

DANGER Will Robinson, DANGER! Pootie troll-bot alert!

Things must be really slow today in St. Petersburg (RU), despite all of Vlad The Impaler's major, even existential woes currently. ;)

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I believe republicans like Reagan, W and Cheney had a lot to do with expanding the executive power.

FDR expanded it a lot.

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William, it is true FDR expanded the executive powers a lot, primarily due to being in a recession. Because of the way our political parties work, our national legislature is often gridlocked. Right now, it is because a group of childish Republicans want to force cuts to all programs that do not give more money to the already rich (which many of them are). They plan to again hold our government hostage if they are not permitted to do massive harm to the American people. That is what our legislature has become. Then there is the jerk from Alabama, Tupperville, a first-year Senator from a small state, who never served in the military, yet denying promotions and positions of importance to officers in our military. How that is permitted to happen is beyond comprehension, but obviously McConnell is OK with it, or he is so out of it, he does not even care. In any case, the Legislature is non-functioning and it isn't the Democrats doing it. That is why executive powers have expanded over time, to keep our government and our people going.

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Aug 26, 2023·edited Aug 26, 2023

I was an airplane and missile buff when I was a kid, back when dinosaurs ruled the earth and Ike was POTUS. The advent of ICBMs that take 30 minutes from launch to detonation had a lot to do with eroding Congressional control over the executive. There was no time to convene a session of Congress so a service member walks close to POTUS with the nuclear codes "football". (In all likelihood, POTUS would be dead from assassination or a small nuke near where the is so a military officer on a plane trailing a long, long wire would issue the retaliation order.)

In that era, partisan differences ended at the shore line, but Vietnam changed that. LBJ was overconfident in what our military could do so he blundered into a major war that was destined to fail. But nuclear retaliation remains under Presidential control even while we have spectacles like Netanyahu addressing Congress during Obama's presidency.

Congress is supposed to enact laws, but it turns out POTUS sets agendas, or tries to. Congress is poorly equipped to set the agendas that frame policy and legislation. The country has always divided over race and sometimes divided over social (typically sex-related) subjects and that leaves agenda setting to POTUS.

The public is led to believe that POTUS can wave a magic wand and make things happen, especially by election promises. The Constitution is built to impede rapid action with checks and balances. The abundance of corrupting money and racial-social schisms add even more checks. The rich and race supremacists will do anything to obstruct progress. So POTUS can ask for x in the State of the Union address, but the other party may run Congress or a few bad actors like Manchin and Sinema can block taking action on issue x.

Getting rid of the power of Big Money will help. Reinstating the Fairness Doctrine will help - I won't miss FOX or MSNBC. Breaking up media consolidation and making PBS-NPR independent will help. But we have backed ourselves into a corner.

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Those were the good old days. The people power that FDR implemented brought good times. It seems to be related mostly to wealth inequality. The inequality breeds an oligarchy, with the corruption like in Russia.

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More likely the Monroe Doctrine, manifest destiny.

We had "gunboat diplomacy" remembered the Maine, took the Philippines, Puerto Rico, etc long before FDR.

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Actually, it started under Andrew Jackson, the first president to fully exercise the presidential veto power. He stood up to the Congress and the Supreme Court and threatened to send Federal troops into states that refused to obey the Federal government (nullification). He greatly expanded the power of the Presidency.

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Yes they should have been indicted in The Hague

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From Nixon Watergate , Gingrich no moral compass the entire time he “served “ he was serving a woman w/an affair , while his wife was fighting breast cancer. The words are true”when people show you who they are believe them

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Ol' Newtie was at the forefront of their PROUD and BLATANT policy of hypocrisy and weapons grade PROJECTION! ;)

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founding

Exactly right, It is noted internationally that KIssinger was not tried as a war criminal for his unlawful invasion of Cambodia. Why would other governments trust the International Courts when USA crimes against humanity go unchallenged. Not only that but Kissinger is treated with respect by the USA media....often a guest and doesn't he teach? What does that say?

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Yep I saw it was his 100th Birthday not long ago..........how come to good die young and people like him live in splendour?

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Elizabeth, yep, Kissinger is an appalling human being but has never been held accountable for any of the harm he has caused. I hope he is haunted by those who died because of him. Nah, people as far gone as he is don't feel anything.

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And don't forget---the loathesome Kissinger was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize, essentially for resolving the situation he started. A travesty.

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Could the same be said of Reagan's interference in the hostage situation in Iran? Treason?

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Someone did it for Reagan. Nixon did it himself.

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But wasn't the scheme surrounding the release of the hostages done at Reagan's instigation? On his orders? At least as much as Nixon's crimes were done on his orders? That is, Nixon wasn't present at the break-in, nor did he meet directly with the leaders in South Vietnam, per the article you linked.

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No proof. Reagan was merely a facd man, all form and no substance. Probably Casey.

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Maybe. My guess is that there's no proof because nobody looked for any. Carter was a beaten man, and Reagan was soon up for canonization, so....

Possible the scheme was carried out without Reagan's sign-off, but I doubt it. At the very least, I'd say it was another Bay of Pigs situation.

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Nobody at the time and maybe even now can figure that out. He was suffering Alzheimer's during his presidency, so yeah he could have ordered it or the perps knew he's too addled to pay attention.

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Daniel, and Kissinger is still being lionized, probably because even when reporters brought out our/his role in Cambodia and Chile (and probably others), it moved out of the news stream quickly and people were not sure they should actually believe such "conspiracies." People had a hard time believing anyone in this country would do those terrible things. It happened again in the '80s with Iran-contra and a whole lot of people died, but again no one was held accountable. I want to believe Trump and Kump will be held accountable, but I am not sure of that. There are a lot of forces trying very hard to make sure that never happens. Trump walked into the Fulton Co. jail last night and out in just a very few minutes, king of his world. He should have had to wait there like other prisoners do to soak up the atmosphere. He should have had to give accurate height and weight (they could have a simple scale there), and take a "real" mug shot, not just a quickie that Trump can raise money with. Will any of the trials happen? That is unclear. Trump has the best underhanded lawyers money can buy and those guys will try to wreck every procedure, delay, whine, plead in every way possible which may mean nothing happens. That is especially true if that jerk Trump were to be "elected" president again. With his rabid cult and the possible third-party Joe Manchin (another jerk), it is possible because American voters are so often unwilling to be honestly informed or unable to vote at all due to Republican anti-voting laws that have been permitted to be passed even though against our Constitution. It's scary!

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I disagree on just the one point and that's the 'best' lawyers. He had just replaced another lawyer, probably because he didn't want to be disbarred like most of his others are facing. The 'best' are staying clear of him. He doesn't pay his bills and he requires them to do unethical and criminal actions.

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And Kissinger walked free to live into old age.

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That is a big shame. That man (Kissinger) is nasty. Still advises politicians too. I wouldn't have minded him going to jail long long ago.

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Nixon was basically a descent man caught in a bad position whereas Trump is a train running off the tracks heading for a state of social obolivan. The only good to come from the Trump experience is the knowledge that the man and his destructive nature will one day be swallowed by time.

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BS.

I wrote a book, Breaking Up with Cuba. Was caught breaking into his law school to change his grades while at Duke. Nixon owed Cuban gambling debits from before he was in Congress. Was allied with his creditors, the Mafia. Committed character assassination against his political enemies.

You missed Checkers, Helen Gahagan Douglas, other public embarrassments.

He personally screwed up the Cuban situation, put himself into the equation. Khrushchev said "Castro is not a Communist but Nixon is turning him into one."

Committed treason in 1968 by blowing up the Vietnam War peace negotiations.

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Daniel, thank you for adding to my list of crimes Nixon committed that proved he was far from being a decent person and has that indecency in common with Trump. Nixon was just not quite as crude about it

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Not to mention that he beat his wife. Seymour Hersh, the supposedly intrepid investigative reporter, discovered this but decided not to publish it. Must explain why the Nixons lived apart in their last years, and the daughters had deep conflicts about their parents.

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Daniel--No matter what Nixon did he pales in comparison to the essence of Trump.

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Donald, I just have to disagree again. They are both cut from the same cloth. In some ways, Nixon was worse because of the people he surrounded himself with and Trump wanted only lackies who were extreme loyalists but just as clumsy at their cruelty as he is. Nixon's cruelties were far more massive (sabotaging the Vietnam peace talks, allowing Kissinger and Company to do massive harm in Cambodia, ?Chile, and other spots around the world. He let his cover-up team serve time while he got off and implied they were the ones who orchestrated everything. He neglected to tell the world that they were following his orders (as was Kissinger, I suspect, once Kissinger told him what he wanted to do). Nixon was obsessed with Communism. I suspect he had no real idea what it was but was sure it was so horrible everyone he didn't like must be a Communist. He was nearly always wrong, but who cared. the label was out there and he was on to the next thing. Like Trump, Nixon wanted to be if not liked, appreciated, so he did get some things done that did benefit this nation: establishing the EPA, the clean air and clean water acts, and Title IX. Did those positives outweigh the rest, I think not even though I appreciate them.

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Ruth--Bottom line Trump is a far worse threat to this country than Nixon ever was, even though Dick was an unsavory character he was still an american, something Trump can never be.

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Daniel--You seem to be infatuated with the "BS" issue. Is that the best you can do to express yourself. Negativity begets failure do you have any thing constructive to add to the thread.

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That's because you're a Republican. Govern yourself accordingly.

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Nixon was not a descent man. He lied to the American people and sent many young people into a hellish war the U.S. had no reason for being there. Many brave veterans still suffer consequences from his lies. Descent leaders don't sent spies into other parties political headquarters. This dude needed to be imprisoned. He was corrupt and hurt U.S. legacy.

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Cynthia--Given what you know, if you had to choose between Trump and Nixon who would pick.

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Hard choice because they are both corrupt. Nixon caused so much heartbreak for families and people. I am grateful our veterans who fought for America finally got recognition and respect for their bravery. I still grieve for those who did not make it home. Trump may be more dangerous as we may not know every player he still has out there trying to tear our freedoms and democracy apart. Neither can tell the truth. Both think they are above the law. Presidents who are corrupt should be sentenced, imprisoned, and required to serve the sentence. In both of these cases, Super-max is appropriate. Of course, Trump will need to first stand trial and be convicted.

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Cynthia--It seems somethings are worth waiting for.

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Donald, I must disagree with you that Nixon was a basically decent man. I think he was a power-hungry man and would have done whatever it took to get the power he craved. His participation in the McCarthy insanity is just a taste of that. His sabotage of the Vietnam peace effort by President Johnson is another example. He was a user like so many powermongers. Trump and Nixon have that power addiction in common, neither of them decent people.

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Ruth--Nevertheless, when push came to shove he left the Presidency for the good of the country, what has Trump done?

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I think he left the Presidency to avoid a certain impeachment conviction. I don't think the good of the country ever entered his mind. If that had mattered to him, he wouldn't have done the things he did in the first place.

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THIS!!! :)

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Denise---The impending possibility of an impeachment did no doubt have an influence on his decision to step down, why is Trump still there. We picked him from that dreaded peach tree, twice. Trump makes Nixon look like a fledgling buffoon in comparison, that's how bad Trump is.

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This characterization of Nixon as "basically a descent man" is a little off. He created his own "bad position" in which he found himself during Watergate. I like your description putting Trump in the obscure places of future history.

" . . . swallowed by time." Yes, I intend to outlive Donald Trump, but both of us inherit longevity from our families.

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Sandra--The descent remmark has come under some criticism and rightly so, in comparison to Trump, maybe.

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Thanks for the reminders of the atrocities performed in the past & here's hoping we are actually getting the truth about what is going on overseas these days, but we can never be certain !

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Same with Saddam, Assad, and now with the war in Europe fuelled by the continuous pouring of armament into Ukraine.

Did the US government ask Europe if they wanted war on European soil?

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We are not the aggressors, Tovarich. Putin is. How's everything in Vladivostok?

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The Putie trolls are totally pissed off that their pure fascist DESPOT 'dear leader' may be defeated by the very freedom loving people he aggressively, without provocation, INVADED (just like Hitler did at the start of WW2).

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"Lend/Lease" was a strategy by Roosevelt and Churchill wherein the USA could provide armaments to Great Britain. It was in our interest to keep the war where it was already going on, and not spill over the Atlantic to our own shores. It's very similar to what we are now doing in Ukraine. Now that the country is in ruins, why allow it to spread on to Poland and Romania? Keep it in Ukraine where everything is being destroyed every day. Putin isn't going to be able to do to Ukraine what Hitler was able to do to Poland, and England. That is, Occupy the whole country.

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(S)Hitler 1.0 did not ever 'occupy' England, although he most certainly bombed them in anticipation/hopes of invading them. ;)

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Defending Nixon? Even McNamara had an epiphany.

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Libya is not a good example We killed Gadhafi's daughter in a bombing raid under Reagan. He ma/may not have been behind worldwide terror. Lots of other stuff, like the Balkans,, Pakistan, Egypt.

Sounds like you took the Kool-Aid.

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Go away Leftie No Facts. You are not even on topic. You are simply a MAGA trying to score. TROLL

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Does that apply to Biden today? Does the outrageous behavior of the Biden family taking millions from Ukraine make him impeachable? We’re going to find out.

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This is a lie and should not be allowed to stay posted without being disputed by Substack. .

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Your alleged “outrageous behavior of the Biden family taking millions from Ukraine” is 100% rumor

without a shred of evidence to support it. All presidents aren’t obsessed with money like Donald Trump is and there is plenty of evidence of Trump’s crimes to enrich himself, starting with multiple

counts of fraudulently falsifying documents.

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founding
Aug 25, 2023·edited Aug 26, 2023

interesting how the graph showing trust in Gov. begin to fall in 1964, I don't believe it to be a coincidence that Gov. trust began to fall, following the Civil Rights Era when legislation was passes to ensure black Americans had access to the same Gov. benefits that white Americans benefited from, almost exclusively, following the Great Depression and WW2. This is when Rep. began to use the Southern Strategy in a different way... Govenrment was now bad because it was helping those ppl (black ppl) who many white Americans felt were unworthy, not American. This led, for example, poor white Americans, in the South, to began to support policy that goes against their own self-interest. Instead of voting for politicians/policy to improve all lives, they began voting to prevent black lives from improving. This has resulted in greater income inequality for all and an inability to petition government for the things that would make all lives better (divided electorate, gerrymandering, filibuster, etc, prevent majority rule (Democracy) and resulting in congressional gridlock, where legislation that would benefit the 'common good', now goes to die! Knowledge of true history would enlighten us to the fact that the middle class was not created by individuals tightening up their bootstraps, following the Great Depression and WW2, it was created by Government acting in the interest of the 'greater good'... by in large, black Americans were not considered a part of that greater good, at that time. If we knew that history, we wouldn't keep falling for the individualism that that contradicts the 'grester good' and prevents us from exercising our true power= Power-in-numbers ,through coalition. Instead of fighting for our Common Good, we are fighting each other over crumbs trickled down from the plutocrats that exploit us for their own benefit.

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He does indeed and it can’t come soon enough. Trump is an abusive individual who has trampled on every value I hold dear. I have neither words nor sympathy for those who continue to support this cruel and amoral bastard.

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Aug 26, 2023·edited Aug 26, 2023

We have been failing to hold accountable nearly everyone. 2008 banker crisis. Bill Black at least put some bankers in jail (referred them to it) in the 90s.

After the WWI the GIs were denied benefits. And, many of them were sent to jobs in the Florida Keys working on the railroad. Then many of them died in the hurricane of 1935.

The corruption is so deep. The irony is that Americans are doing this to other Americans - why?

Who, What, When, Where, and Why?

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Interesting pedigree, Trump. Sounds ,a bit like those rough-living Scottish borderlanders, who never had any manners, but boy could they fight—combined with German family affiliations sympathetic to Hitler, and a strong dose of highly punitive German child-rearing practices, popular immediately before the turn of the 19th Century and into the 20th, passed down, father-to-son-to-grandson.

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Anon Y Mouse ; or at least not be allowed to hold any public office.

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Absolutely evil to the nth degree, including his family clan.

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Aug 25, 2023Liked by Robert Reich

It is difficult to share with young people that there was a time where there was shame and not alternate reality

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I’m 73 years old and I remember that time when shame was a powerful hindrance.

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I cannot recall any time when shame hindered our so called representatives or triggered reforms.

Congress' annual "defense' bills -~$860 billion this year - are far in excess of our actual needs. But then they deny police reforms, deny funding for public educations, health welfare etc. The social security administration is in chaos at the moment.

See page 108 of the 2022 IRS 1040 Instructions: https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/i1040gi.pdf

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Maria, yes, and it was a positive shame based on the person having a moral compass that could identify the right direction for a person to go. Those moral compasses of the past are often gone among today's conservatives and Republicans. They believe whatever they feel is right and everyone else's feelings are nonsense and not worth anything. It is hard to get those folks to feel anything but the things that motivate them: fear, anger, hatred for those they don't like (or understand), distrust, discomfort. None of those emotions is positive. They do have the ability to gloat when they think they have won something over someone else, though. They mostly claim to be christian, but I notice the love, caring for others, kindness, and justice are missing from their feelings unless they are directly applied to how they are feeling and what they think they are experiencing. Shame with these folks is irrelevant. They're OK with shaming others, though, knowing just which buttons to push to activate HEIR moral compasses. Amazing how that works.  

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That's why we call them sociopaths, and sometimes psychopaths.

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founding

Absolutely!!!

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what shame?

I didnt see any in Truman or Eisenhower or JFK or LBJ or Nixon for any of the lies and crimes they pulled off.

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Too many religions offer total absolution.

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God loves you as long as you say your sorry. Insult someone I am sorry, steal something I am sorry, kill someone I am sorry. Religion the enabler of Narcissists and the encourager of people to turn the other cheek to the same said narcissists.

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Too true. Exactly what I was taught. And taught my children, who by the ages of about 6 and 9 informed me it didn’t work. So if I got a call from school about fights I should know they had tried it but would now be standing up for themselves. I learned a lot from my children. Still do.

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As a child I took it and only fought back after being pushed and pushed and pushed. I only figured out later what was going on and how not pushing back early caused more problems for me later. It's obvious that the religion I was born into Catholicism is all about showing abeiance to a King or Religious icon, or a government. Which means subjicating yourself to the whim of frequently unjust rule or abuse. The only good take away from the warped perversion of what Jesus originally said is about forgiveness. Not about forgiving the person who tortured you, forgiving yourself for being tortured in the first place and letting go of all the self recriminations.

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Aug 25, 2023·edited Aug 25, 2023

Daniel Solomon; More like too many politicians.

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Too many very long term politicians who don’t keep up with the nation’s needs.

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Citizens United was brought to US by the republican stacked 'Supreme' Court, which made bribery legal.That did not help either.

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I think a lot of people skip over asking forgiveness. They just assume what they do is righteous.

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I agree with you on the religion thing, but the fear of shame overshadowed, and overwhelmed even the 'pardons' given by religion, in the past. (But probably not today, although the putrid orange one is NOT religious at all.)

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I’m 35 and I’ve been looking into America’s history and it looks like we’ve been in an invisible war -- since the civil war.

https://unorthodoxy.substack.com/p/why-esoteric-philosophy-is-vital-329

It appears that the ideologies of America as we know it are only nice to tell, but ultimately they are being destroyed before our very eyes.

https://unorthodoxy.substack.com/p/who-are-the-bad-guys

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Correct. I've always known that some people are still fighting the Civil War. It's kind of sad, but also very angering, because our democracy is less and less safe each time they get away with something.

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I lived in Mississippi in 1964 and the people there were still fighting the Civil War. Again, we have the case where they were never treated like losers of a war and continued to believe they should have won. No lessons learned.

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I did not live in Mississippi, but I wrote a book about Mississippi 1964. “Freedom summer“. Yes, there are many people who are still fighting the Civil War, and who are rank racists, but to say that nothing has changed in Mississippi hides the enormous change in the state, which now has more black, legislators sheriffs, and other officials than any other American state. It is still quite conservative and segregated, but enormous changes have been made since 1964, which was truly the bottom of the Jim Crow era.

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founding

There have been gains but history continues to repeat itself, when ever there is progress, it is followed by pushback and an effort to reverse that progress. Currently the white Republican Mississippi state legislature is trying to pass laws that gives them power over the majority black capital of Mississippi rather than the black elected leadership there. Texas is doing the same, trying to steal power over their largest city- Houston. Is it really progress if you keep having to fight for the same things over and over? Sad to say, but we are fighting for most of the same things we were fighting for during the Civil Rights Movement.

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If you were in the movement, then, perhaps you recall a song in it that said, “freedom is a constant struggle. “The ability to fight back is what was gained in the movement. Yes, it is progress when you have that ability now. And many of the gains of the civil rights movement have not been rolled back. There are not colored only signs now and there are no lynchings. You do not have to step off the sidewalk when a white person approaches. To acknowledge progress is extremely important because to say nothing has changed fosters despair.

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founding

Both have to be acknowledged because both are true. There has been progress and there are efforts to thwart that progress and/or reverse it. I believe Black Americans have a keen understanding that there is a "...constant struggle" because of their experience. However black Americans' struggle has often been questioned or not believed. That disbelief, or assertion that racism no longer exists, has been exploited to dismantle the legislation that facilitated and protected much of that progress. In addition there are efforts to keep it that way be hiding black history, because it can be a catalyst to empathy and coalition. It could inform others and prevent those same tactics from being used again, but on all of us- as they are now... Threats of violence, used to scare us into inaction; Putting bounties on the heads of those who dare seek freedom or bodily autonomy; States Rights used to usurp Federal laws/power... It is true that the struggle is constant but overcoming it requires multi-racial, multi-gendered, multi-generational, multi-class, milti-etc coalition to overcome the many efforts being used to keep us divided and to facilitate minority rule.

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You should have lived there in 1964.

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I completely supported the Civil Rights marchers [from my armchair] and loved MLK as the greatest American, bar none.

I wonder if racism will ever be out of the South.

Maybe Lincoln should have let the South secede.

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I've questioned that also.

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I agree, Professor Reich that the decline in trust started its downturn with Nixon and has continued down through Trump. It is even affecting a really good President like Joe Biden. But there is another story to go with it. As you pointed out Newt Gingrich stormed into Congress determined to undermine Clinton with every salacious story he could dig up. But something worse happened. Every time the Republicans controlled either the Senate or the House no legislation helpful to the majority of Americans was passed. From Ronnie Baby on, taxation increased greatly on those of us at the lower end of the spectrum. With the 1986 tax "break" my taxes went up in 1987 by $700. In those years I was a teacher. I made decent money for the time, not six figures but getting closer to $50,000. An additional $700 (I was already paying about $3000 State and Federal) hurt.

More and more,, the wealthiest got bigger breaks and we, the "general population" supported them. Obama did manage to get the Affordable Care Act passed; but at the same time he allowed the very people who had taken the saving accounts, raided our pension funds, stole the mortgages from millions of people; to not just get away scot free, but with 900 billion dollars of our tax dollars to sooth their fragile nerves. How do you think we felt reading about Insurance Giant AGS spending $2 million dollars on a Christmas party in Vegas and rewarding their con artist employees with huge bonuses from those bailout funds. I didn't lose my home, but I was very, very, sorry for those who did.

I retired from teaching in 1988 and went to work for Social Services. It broke my heart to see funds cut

to truly needy people. Yes, there were a few drug addicts getting help (5 to 7% of the entire caseload) But most were people who had lost their jobs, women with 2 or 3 children whose husbands had left them.

My point is, the political games are disgusting. But I think the fact that very little helpful legislation and in the 118th Congress NO legislation is passed. I think a lot of us resent that we are paying $274,000 per year in salary plus expenses - both offices an personal, and some darned good benefits and in return all we're getting is 24/7 begging for money. Is it any wonder we're losing our trust in Government?

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I’ve been saying for years that the Congress and Senate should term limits. I don’t know what that would be but some politicians have been in office and are so powerful that they forget what the job is, working for the people.

Vote them in and then vote them out. They seem to always be running for office and afraid of doing the right thing which may affect their chances of reelection.

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Fay Reid : wasn't it Ronald Reagan who started taxing Social Security?

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I think the downturn began in 1944 when the DNC somehow persuaded FDR to replace his running mate Henry Wallace with the inept Harry Truman who dropped 2 nuclear bombs claiming it was done to end the Pacifac War. Or you could argue that the downturn began with Eisenhower when he approved CIA overthrows in South America, Latin America, and SE Asia. Or it began again when JFK with CIA backed the Bay of Pigs invasion, President Diem in South Vietnam, and his assassination, or LBJ who reversed JFK's 1963 order to pull troops out of Vietnam two days after JFK was assassinated, secretly ramped up the War, which killed over 60k American soldiers, and began bombing North Vietnam after his Gulf of Tonkin false flag operation. Nixon was just following in their footsteps.

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Those were all terrible incidents you mentioned, Robert - particularly dropping the two atomic bombs. But, our democratic republic survived and flourished. From 1973 until 1921 we've been heading toward fascism at worst, or an oligarchical autocracy. I can think of no worse catastrophe to attack the United States of America than the rule of fascism under Trump or any of the goons supporting him combined with a soon to be irreversible Global warming.

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The TARP monies were paid back, plus interest.

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The only people who got a tax break under RR were the wealthy, not the middle class. She isn’t lying.

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Since YOU are the person who accused Ms. Reid of lying, YOU are on the hook to produce the numbers to prove your charge! Show us the numbers! I doubt that you can.

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She did. Read her comment again.

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Russian troll!

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Which form of proof would satisfy you? A 1987 tax return? You show yours first.

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Did they have to file them back then in the USSR?? LOL

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I think this discussion is possibly about the FICA increase of those years. Reagan and Tip O'Neal got together and ironed out an increase because of the anticipated Boomers who would be taking out Social Security in larger numbers, so just like we had to build a bunch of new schools for the Boomers when we were young ,we began, in 1988, to save more money to Social Security, in order to have enough for the Boomers in the future.

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Sorry Leftie, my aim wasn't to discuss my personal taxes, I was married at the time so there was also income from my then husband, Since I no longer have my 1987 taxes to display I cannot defend my response. I remember the $700 increase because I was so incensed with my Republican inlaws oooing and aawing over Reagan and how good he was that I (in 1988) displayed my 1986 and 1987 tax returns to them to show how much our personal tax bill went up

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Shut up.

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Mr. Nixon should never have been pardoned. At the time, I thought Mr. Ford was doing that in order for the country to heal. That may have been his intentions but it signaled to the Nixons, Gingriches, Trumps of our country that authority over our country could be had by lies, deceit, and corruption. I like to think that we, as Americans, are a resilient bunch. We live in a country where freedom is treasured. We believe in the justice system to work for EVERYBODY! Mr. Trump must be held accountable for his actions and face the consequences. In order for us to begin to trust and believe in the federal government again, we must ascertain who is fit to be a politician. When I am deciding who to vote for, I research that person's voting record in Congress if they are incumbents. If they are brand new to politics, I ask if they are willing to work across the aisle, bipartisan, to get things done for the American people. If they hedge, or garble the answer, they do not get my vote. Nothing can be done for the American people unless both parties are willing to work together for the common good. We, as Americans, have one very important job and that is to vote. Ask questions, research the person you are considering voting for. I truly believe the Republican Party can stop at the edge of the cliff. Many Republicans want their party to improve. Yes, they will scream about Mr. Trump being a victim, but he is no victim. We were the victims from his time in the White House and in order for us to move beyond those horrible years, we need to see the justice system prevail and hold Mr. Trump accountable. Once that is done, maybe just maybe, all of the wannabe dictators will realize just how strong our Democracy is.

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Ford didnt do it 'to heal' the country, he did it to protect Nixon. And it did not 'heal the county', it did the opposite. It devastated the country, emboldened the enemies of democracy, and undermined the faith of the people.

Ford's pardon of Nixon was a flagrant middle finger to the democracy...how can anyone think that abuse of the presidential pardon is good for the country?

And Trump if elected would further abuse the pardon power.

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After reading this week's post, I suspect that the stash of payoff funds was used not only to silence the burglars, but to anyone else who did Nixon a favor.

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Margaret, what is the "stash of payoff funds" to which you refer?

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It was referenced in the article.

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Let there be NO doubt.....Roger Stone, a friend of Trump for measly 45 years, has influenced and advised Trump. Stone screwed Democrats in the 70s as he helped sabotaged carters reelection effort & Stone was the guy behind 'the Brooks Bros. riot' who attempted to intimidate vote counters in Florida 2000 Presidential election. He was convicted of a felony during Trumps term but D pardoned him. This SOB must be stopped once & for all...MAGA must be stopped.

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I am surprised that POS does not have der Fuehrer inked on his back, instead of his icon Prixxon! ;)

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founding

Who do you want to say you stood for? Richard Nixon, Spiro Agnew, Donald Trump and George Santos on one side ,Republicans or on the other side Democrats of FDR, Jimmy Carter, Barrick Obama and Joe Biden? Who will history admire?

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We now know that Nixon was a traitor and Trump an insurrectionist. About 20% of the population is in denial.

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Yet, somehow, that 20% can destroy us.

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Paul ; I don't think so! 20% is a minority. Americans are tough. If we have to bomb the gun makers, so be it.

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Minorities have taken over governments many times. Best example is Nazis in Germany in the 1930’s. Many parallels to Trump.

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The GOP is waiting to get their hands on the US military. Just look at Tommy tubberville.

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Tommy Tupperware belongs in jail.

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That rightwingnut, totally incompetent YEEEHHHAAAWWW is ONLY in power because of effing college football!

Just like his master SCUMp, it was the popularity from being on their talking boxes so often that duped the rubes into voting for them

(That, and of course their; abject racism, hatred of all 'others', white supremacy, ANTI-SEMITISM, xenophobia, bashing of 'libtards', etc,. etc., ad nauseum.)

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Yes, it's pretty clear, right? The Republican Party, since Nixon, has declined into the hot mess we have today. We now are dealing with a nightmare where one of our two parties is illegitimate - its ranks filled with traitors - elected officials who want to tear our democratic system down - and replace it with what? How do we even begin to hold them all accountable?!

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Replace it with abject NAZISM, that's what. :( :( :(

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Depends on whether Putin’s fascists get to write the history books or not.

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I stand for ideals first and people second, but mostly those people are Democrats in recent history.

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There have always been megalomaniacs in politics, and both Nixon and Trump are at the top of that list. I find it quite terrifying that both were actually elected president.

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Paula, it’s my understanding that every Intelligence agency we have has said, without Putin’s help Trump wouldn’t have been president.

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They documented the Russian activity. Try reading the Mueller report.

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The Pootie troll farm bot got some reinforcements called in. ;)

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“How Russia Helped Swing the Election for Trump

A meticulous analysis of online activity during the 2016 campaign makes a powerful case that targeted cyberattacks by hackers and trolls were decisive.”

(The New Yorker, by Jane Mayer, 9/24/18)

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FDR had...how many terms?

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Each won in a fair election.

What's your point?

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Four, but he died early in the second year of his last term, so it was just a total of about 13 years.

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PERFECTLY LEGAL back then. ;)

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What goes on now in Washington is beyond scary..it's downright horrible, I'm 71 and over my lifetime I have seen, heard, and read about what is happening...it's so damn sad that a country that once was revered throughout the world has been reduced to a joke...with the Republican Party only going after what they want and not giving a damn about what the people who elected them on what they told them during there campaignd for reelection...Ron Johnson said I have a plan to bring down inflation and gas prices...2+ years later...nothing but he's back in Washington...and that's just one person....they the "Republican's" are out to destroy America and they will succeed...they all stand with Trump said he did nothing wrong... election interference he screams, it's a witch hunt...any person who watched television anytime between November & January know exactly what TRUMP did , the people who support him all have their heads in the sand and soon with that happening this country will be buried in sand....LORD help us all...

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This is what happens when we elect people who care about money more than anything else. They are corrupt. They’re in Congress to get rich. In order to weed these greedy people out, we have to remove the incentive--money in the form of campaign donations. No more PACs that launder illegal money (bribes) from other countries like Russia or Saudi Arabia. Republicans can stop lying because it’s not

going to result in larger campaign contributions. If we pass legislation that allows only public money

for campaigning--same amount to each candidate.

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I remember when John Kennedy was criticized because he had hit the million dollar mark to run his campaign. (Apparently some of it was from his father.) Can you imagine? Running the entire campaign with a million dollars? And the public thinking he had too much money to run fairly.

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we dont pass legislation. the campaign financed and outright corrupted do.

thats kind of the problem

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The route of decline is well outlined in this article, however it lacks one thread. That is the thread of madness. I say madness because I am neither a lawyer or a psychological professional. Although the thread of madness actually predates Nixon. It started with Joseph McCarthy. But there is a thread that ties Watergate to Jan. 6. That is the person of Roger Stone. It took me a while to realize that the Roger Stone who instigated some of Nixon's "dirty tricks" was the same Roger Stone who was arrested on January 25, 2019. In Watergate there was a thread of madness. G. Gordon Liddy and his wife were certainly bonkers. Nixon himself had gone off the rails by the time he recorded the infamous "Watergate Tapes"

I would love to see a book titled From McCarthyism to MAGA: The Transformation of Political Party to Cult.

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see Allen Ginsburg's poem, Howl - 'the pure products of America go crazy'

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Thanks I need to refresh my memory on that. I will look it up.

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My parents, both decorated vets of WWII & Republicans, couldn't stand Nixon & referred to him as Tricky Dicky... in 1960, they voted for my generation's President, JFK - a major departure for them. He committed outright treason to win in 68, adopted racism as the Republican core strategy, sacrificed thousands in the Vietnam War he prolonged for his own corrupt purposes... his pardon made it all OK.

Years later, I took my 2 young sons skiing at Beaver Creek in Colorado. Ford had a place there at the base of the slope. The chair we were on passed over his entry, and as we rode up, out came Gerald Ford to get into a big black Suburban. I clacked my skiis together, and a big load of snow fell right down his collar and neck... one small act of defiance!

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great story! I hate Ford for his slavish Warren Committee work helping to deceive and cover up JFKs assassination and then he tops it off by pardoning Nixon. Who knows what else that bum did.

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..."played football without his helmet..."

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Yes the Bay of Pigs was CIA lunacy. It later got JFK assassinated. LBJ criminally expanded the Vietnam war. But the issue today is the fascism of the oligarchy and the disgusting GOP swine who do it’s bidding.

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You honestly don't know?

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Linguistically, the reeds tied together with an axe blade, the fasces, is a symbol that reaches way back into ancient times. I used to ponder how this represented our modern idea of fascism and came up with the way the rich get bound together with the politicians. That's two separate paradigms. Under fascism, the rich own the market. Under socialism, the poor get more of the spoils of the marketplace. Under communism, the marketplace and the government are one entity. So fascism is government for the rich and socialism is government for the poor. This isn't actually a clear definition, however. Fascists like to push people around and be mean; put minorities into unfavorable conditions like concentration camps. Fascists like to force people to think "correctly", like when they ban books. It's one of those things where "I know it when I see it." China is well equipped with "re-education centers". That looks like fascism to me. Everybody has to think the same way. That would be the bundle tied with the reeds of understanding. The blade represents conquest, order, threat against those outside the bundle.

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Internment camps were an American disgrace. However, you can't be simplistic and paint every situation with the same brush. The whole world had become almost tribal in their devotions to what they considered to be the means to their very survival. Before you can make this one remark, you have to show that you've also absorbed the historic plague of jingoism that was global during the first half of the 20th century.

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Socialism is prevalent in Scandinavian countries. They've been socialists for nearly three generations. Look it up to learn how they accommodate new mothers and child bonding time.

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Just look at your 'dear leader' Vlad, there is a textbook example. ;)

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Eisenhower got us involved in Vietnam. Eisenhower had formulated the plan for the Bay of Pigs and left it for Kennedy to execute.

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French Catholic colonialism and the post WW2 irrational fear of communism (which is a myth) got us involved in Vietnam. With great minds like G Gordon Liddy and E Howard Hunt running around is it any wonder that Daniel Ellsberg found it necessary to spill the beans on the DOD and the White House?

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See above....FDR late '44 actually .

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Roosevelt in 1944 is the man got who the US deeply involved in Vietnam first by funding 80% of DeGualle's S. Vietnam occupation in return for hands off US ops in post war Europe. Truman likewise did not remove any French and added CIA after 1947 in SE Asia, Eisenhower also funded the CIA "advisors" in Vietnam. After the Bay of Pigs in April '61, JFK fired Dulles and placed CIA under the JCS, and replaced CIA military "advisors" in S. Vietnam with uniformed troops, then in November '63 JFK ordered 1,000 troops withdrawn by Jan. '64. but LBJ reversed this order 2 days after JFKs assassination.

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At the end of World War II, the United States was broadly popular in Vietnam for having repelled the Japanese occupiers. Even Ho Chi Minh, the nationalist and communist revolutionary, started off pro-American. But, through the terms of five U.S. presidents, that relationship deteriorated and the United States and Vietnam found themselves at war.

Initially, many Vietnamese appreciated the anti-colonial views of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who opposed the return of the French colonizers and who asserted in a charter that all people had a right “to choose the form of government under which they will live.” During World War II, Ho Chi Minh received arms from the CIA’s predecessor, helped locate downed American pilots and gathered intelligence on Japanese military positions.

State Department officials in Asia warned Harry Truman, who became president in 1945 upon Roosevelt’s death, that French rule of Vietnam would lead to “bloodshed and unrest.” But Truman did not share his predecessor’s anti-colonialism and ultimately acquiesced to the reestablishment of France’s prewar empire, which he hoped would shore up France’s economy and national pride.

No sooner did the French arrive back in Vietnam, with the guns of World War II barely gone cold, than fighting broke out against Ho’s Viet Minh forces. At first, the United States remained officially neutral, even as it avoided any contact with Ho. In 1947, however, Truman asserted that U.S. foreign policy was to assist any country whose stability is threatened by communism. Then the outbreak of the Korean War in 1950, plus the flow of aid from China and the Soviet Union to the Viet Minh, prompted Truman to reexamine Vietnam in a Cold War light.

Fearing that Vietnam, too, would become a communist state, he sent over transport planes and jeeps, along with 35 military advisers, as part of a multimillion-dollar aid package.

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My father was an accountant. He showed me how to do my own taxes. I was able to see, from one year to the next, every time Ronnie connived another tax ‘break’ mine went up while his - POTUS - went down. Sorry to say, that is the only policy the Republican’s have had since Ike was in the White House - cut taxes for the wealthy, and screw the rest of us.

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The underlying issue is race. Our population is becoming darker and some white folks are desperate to stop it. It wasn't obvious in the early 70s. Nixon was just plain racist. Newt probably was racist like Nixon. But demographics were shifting as our labor (oops! I mean immigration) policy kept up a steady stream of dark-skinned migrants. The US will soon no longer be majority white.

Republicans are playing for keeps to keep the USA white.

PS - Ronald Regan probably switched sides as a result of JFK supporting civil rights actions. It wasn't just Nancy's influence.

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WHAT?!?! HOW DOES THAT FIT INTO THIS? Cherry picking gets you nowhere.

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History books are full of reasons why you don't see black and brown 1st country nations and what does that have to do with the conversation?

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The OP mentioned two things: race demographics (getting browner), and racism. I'll repeat myself: all first world countries are varying shades of brown. Better get used to it.

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All of them.

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