I was wasn’t quite ten years old when I first became interested in politics. I had no choice really. You see, that was when Senator Sam Ervin (D-NC) and the rest of the Senate Watergate Committee began the hearings that eventually led to the introduction of articles of impeachment against Richard “Tricky Dick” Nixon and his resignation on 9 August 1974.
Back in the “Dark Ages“, kids, of the early 1970‘s, everyone had to rely on television signals that were broadcast through the air and picked up by antennas, and most people were glad if they could pick up the three networks (yes, there were only three commercial networks) and the fledgling PBS. and the only cost involved was for the electricity to power your TV.
So, anyway, once Senator Sam (as we in North Carolina called him) and his Committee got going, all three networks started covering the proceedings. this meant that when I got home from school each day, it was a given that my Dad would be watching it. I’m sure that at first I was upset because the reruns of I Dream of Jeannie and Gilligan’s Island were being pre-empted by this boring thing, but before long I became just as hooked as the rest of the nation.
John Dean, John Ehrlichman, E. Howard Hunt, H.R. Haldeman, G. Gordon Liddy, Charles “Chuck” Colson - I watched them all. It got to the point that my parents actually let me stay home from school on a couple of occasions to catch what everyone knew would be really “juicy” bits. And at 6:30 each evening we would watch as Walter Cronkite gave a rundown of each day’s events.
I was so caught up in the coverage of the whole Watergate scandal that on the day Nixon left the White House, flashing his trademark two-handed victory wave (which I thought at the time was simply “Peace, man!” - yes, I was a ten year old hippie, long hair and everything) dramatically before he stepped onto Marine One (the official Presidential helicopter), that I ‘interviewed’ my parents on tape. I asked them what they thought all this meant to the nation and to them personally, and whether or not they thought that Gerald Ford would pardon Nixon.
I kept that cassette for a long time, but I can no longer remember what happened to it.
I’ve been thinking a lot about those days lately, what with the lies and obfuscation coming out of the Dubya White House. Talk of impeachment is rampant everywhere but the right to far right. Check out the remark threads on any article having to do with the administration on any moderate to far left blog and I guarantee you that there will be at least one that simply says “Impeach the Bastards!”.
For a long time I believed that, no matter how blatant and egregious the lies and actions of “the Decider”, impeachment was an impossibility - before last November, because of the Republican majorities in Congress, and since then because even though the Democrats have a sufficient majority in the House of Representatives to pass articles of impeachment, the fifty to forty-nine split in the Senate (with Joe Liebermann (I[diot] - CT) would preclude conviction, which takes a two-thirds majority.
However, in the last few days, my hopes have been renewed. Now, even formerly staunch allies of “He Who Should Remain Nameless” are hinting around the edges (and in some cases coming right out) of using the “i” word. The unnecessary, immoral, and hopelessly FUBAR war in Iraq, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita (I don‘t blame them for the actual hurricanes, you understand, just their lack of giving a shit about the plight of those caught in the event and its‘ aftermath), the Scooter Libby trial and conviction, the Walter Reed Hospital scandal, the politicization of the Justice Department, no bid contracts to buddies of the White House for everything from the war to hurricane relief to hospital maintenance - all of these things have forced even those allies to rethink their position.
It’s about bloody time, in my opinion. I have been convinced that the current occupant of the White House is a festering boil on the ass of Freedom ever since the Vice (and how sweetly apropos is that) Deciderer held secret meetings with oil industry officials to formulate the official US Energy Policy and the Oval Office Pretender voided the US commitment to the Kyoto Protocols.
It is now blatantly apparent to anyone with an IQ greater than that of a tree frog that the current regime is lying and has been acting in a manner that is... well, I’ll be generous and only characterize it as unconstitutional.
"Treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors" indeed.