Home > Critical Thinking, Current Affairs, Dystopia, Musings, Philosophy sans Sophistry, Reason, Secular Religions, Skepticism > Why Nixon Was Almost Impeached and Had to Resign the Presidency

Why Nixon Was Almost Impeached and Had to Resign the Presidency

In early 2013, I wrote a post on why Nixon was still the most reviled president in recent american history. Since that time (especially post Nov 8, 2016) things have.. changed. While establishment democrats have been busy trying to sell the bullshit farce of Trump’s impeachment via a totally partisan vote in the house, I thought it would be a good time to return to topic of impeachment- specifically focusing on the last president who resigned rather than face impeachment. As many of you know, dying corporate media figureheads have been futilely masturbating at the possibility of Trump resigning or being removed from office ever since he won the election in 2016. So let us talk about why Nixon resigned rather than face removal through impeachment and why the later possibility was realistic in the early 1970s, but is laughably improbable in 2020.

1] The 1970s and 1980s were the last decades when the electorate and politicians in this country were not ideologically polarized. It is noteworthy that 1973 was immediately after the last great political realignment of 1968-1972, which was caused by passage of civil right and other similar legislation and resulted in a realignment of the political fortunes for both major parties. After that realignment, democrats started winning in traditionally republican constituencies and regions while republicans started winning in democratic strongholds in the south. But more relevantly, the reasonably good economic times (or at least their recent memory) along with the relatively minor differences in public positions of both parties in combination with lots of deal making in smokey rooms made something like bipartisan impeachment of the president a real possibility.

2] While Nixon won the 1972 presidential election by a large margin, he was never personally a popular president with a loyal base. To make matters worse, he had stepped on the toes of many fellow republicans during his rise to power. While politicians as a group are not known for loyalty to their colleagues, having a long history of pissing of your fellow partisans makes such decisions that much easier. Nixon had, over the eight years of his vice-presidency under Eisenhower and first term as president, amply demonstrated his tendency to be untrustworthy to his own party members as well as hog the limelight. Read a bit about the machinations which got him selected as republican candidate in 1962 and 1968. It is no wonder that so many of his own party members were, at at best, ambivalent in their support for him.

3] Nixon was unlucky to be elected at a transitional period in american history. His victory in 1968 came in an era of much racial and social conflict, not to mention all those “mysterious” political assassinations. He was also unfortunate to come to power at the same time as formerly popular but now exposed assholes such as Curtis LeMay, J. Edgar Hoover, Robert Moses etc had started to lose their positions of authority and power. In other words, the public was increasingly associating men of his type and generation with abuse of power and general malfeasance- sorta being like catholic priests in the past decade. While this, by itself, would have not been deadly to his political career – it occurred alongside many large failures over which he ended up presiding.

4] Nixon was also unlucky enough to be the president when USA had to finally withdraw from erstwhile south Vietnam. As I have mentioned in some previous posts, USA has not won a single large armed conflict since WW2. However their previous defeats such as an inability to win the Korean war had been sold to the american public as stalemates. The defeat in Vietnam was however simply too obvious to spin and though Nixon did not initiate the american involvement in that conflict, he was the president when the maximum number of american soldiers died in that war. Leaks about the “secret” mass bombings of Laos and Cambodia did not help his public image either, not because the racist white american public cared about innocent Asian lives but because the expenditure of all that money, white lives and bombs did not prevent their defeat in Vietnam.

5] Nixon was also unlucky be president towards the end of three decades of post-WW2 prosperity enjoyed by americans. He was the president when Stagflation became a thing and his attempts price control measures did not work as intended. the USA also looked impotent in the aftermath of the oil shock of the early-1970s. The achievements and optimism of the 1950s and 1960s had given way to defeatism and pessimism of the 1970s. Nixon became increasingly associated in the minds of the public and politicians with a country that was past its prime and on a path of decline. We also cannot forget the numerous investigations into illegal activities by governmental agencies such as the Church Committee were started after leaks such as the Pentagon Papers and other similar revelations which permanently damaged the public image of many american government agencies and institutions. Much of this occurred while Nixon was president.

To make a long story short, the impeachment of Nixon had nothing to do with “maintaining the rule of law” or any other moralistic-sounding bullshit. It, however, had everything to do with an attempt to rebrand the american government and institutions by forcing out an already disliked president who just happened to be the public face of many failures suffered by the american establishment in the late-1960s and early-1970s. They just wanted to replace an old mascot of declining popularity with another one who appeared better on TV and did not instantly remind americans of the numerous recent failures suffered by their elites and institutions. After Nixon resigned, being able to maintain a positive public image became the defining attribute of any president. And that is why establishment media and their willing catamites still obsess about the image of politicians rather than their actions and impact of their decisions.

What do you think? Comments?

  1. January 1, 2020 at 9:38 am

    And, in a related note… as far as US presidential candidates helping their campaigns by allegedly utilizing foreign governments:

  2. Yusef
    January 2, 2020 at 3:03 pm

    Another dramatic turnabout in the fortunes of the US was the need to leave the gold standard and no longer back dollars. Thus, the beginning of fiat currency. Responsibility for this was dumped on Nixon’s lap but he really had no choice. If he hadn’t acted and acted quickly, US gold reserves would have been drained away to other countries, especially France.

    Related to this was the collapse of the Bretton-Woods agreements. This is some big time consequence, this here. Someone had to take the fall, and that someone was tricky dick. Tricky was really just a poor boy with a quick mind, no true scruples, and a keen eye for opportunity. Believe it or not, he originally ran for political office after answering a “help wanted” advertisement in a newspaper. The rich backers behind the ad continued to lurk in the background for the rest of Trickster’s career, but he was never important beyond use they could make of him– entirely disposable in and of himself.

    What joesantus comments about I had previously heard in relation to Henry Kissinger. Kissinger, a Rockefeller protégé was a major participant in the Paris Peace talks, and was the man on the ground in their sabotage. Kissinger became Nixon’s NSA head, then later Secretary of State. What is little remembered is how independently Kissinger operated in those capacities. He essentially ran foreign policy during that time. This was unprecedented.

    Nixon also had an association with the Rockefellers. After Nixon lost the bid for governor of California in 1962, people thought his political career was over. He was, however, hired by the Rockefellers as a well-paid lawyer. What he really did for them, though, was run for President. From 1963 to 1968, Nixon was campaigning. This of course paid off big for the Rockefellers personally.

    I one hundred percent agree Nixon’s impeachment had a single thing to do with high morals, the rule of law, or any other high sounding fru-fru-la.

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