A Similarity and a Difference


Both the 1972 and 2016 presidential elections were plagued with irregularities committed by persons associated with the party that was in the White House during the election.

However, IIRC none of the criminal acts committed during the 1972 election (as opposed to the 1973/74 coverup) were perpetrated by currently serving law enforcement officials.

I’m Old Enough to Remember When …


… Democrats thought that government spying on political campaigns was a bad idea. Attorney General Barr is about my age, and he seems to have similar memories of the ’60s and ’70s. K. S. Bruce has a post at InsideHook about Barr’s answer to a senator’s question about why he thought he should investigate such spying.

“The generation I grew up in, which is the Vietnam War period, people were all concerned about spying on anti-war people and so forth by the government, and there were a lot of rules in place to make sure that there’s an adequate basis before our law enforcement agencies get involved in political surveillance.”

I remember COINTELPRO and Watergate.

The Vietnam War generation — the Woodstock generation — having seen J. Edgar Hoover and an out of control CIA, would have concerns over a J. Edgar Comey, a J. Edgar McCabe, a J. Edgar Brennan, a J. Edgar Strozk, if they carelessly or with bias began improper surveillance on election campaign teams of ANY party or cause.

J. Edgar Mueller?

Barack Milhous Obama


Back in 2008, it was fashionable in some quarters of the Blogosphere to predict that Obama’s administration would be like Carter’s second term. There were those of us who suggested that might be a best case scenario.

I don’t want to have to tell you I told you so, but as Scott Johnson has noted over at PowerLine there’s a stench reminiscent of Watergate in the political air. Of course, things have evolved. An 18-minute dropout on tape has become 30,000 or so emails, but we’re still facing the same sort of corrupt beasts.

It Looks Like They’ve Lost Bob Schieffer


(H/T, Instapundit) Well, yes, those of us who were working in the news business back in the early ’70s do see certain similarities to Nixon.

I have to tell you that is exactly the approach that the Nixon administration took. They said, “These are all second-rate things. We don’t have time for this. We have to devote our time to the people’s business.” You’re taking exactly the same line they did.

Yes, but what other line is left for them? The White House staff clearly isn’t able to tell the truth. Consider Preiffer’s rant to Chris Wallace about the irrelevance of facts.

What did the President know, and when did he know it? And where was he and what was he doing when he got told?

You know, I’m beginning to look forward to the day when this generation’s Fred Thompson asks the analogous question to “Mr. Butterfield, were you aware of the existence of any listening devices in the Oval Office of the President?”

UPDATE—Stacy McCain offers the Cliffs Notes version of the White House response: “Shut up, Republicans!”

Like Watergate?


I’m beginning to hear rumblings of “just like Watergate” in discussions of both the Benghazi and IRS v. Tea Party stories.

Really? Watergate, after all, was only a third-rate burglary according the administration in the White House at the time.

I suppose that having a body count has kept the White House from pooh-poohing the attack on the consulate as merely a “third-world mugging,” but the IRS story is already being pitched as overzealous low-level workers exceeding their authority.

Ah, what difference, at this point, does it make?

Team Kimberlin Post of the Day


Cabin Boy Bill Schmalfeldt has testified that he can’t remember complaining about having to work on President’s Day. Perhaps this will refresh his memory.

OK, so who got President’s Day off? Huh? Raise your hand. I don’t see that many hands. It’s not one of those holidays that many people get off, but , uh, when I was in the Federal Government, I used to laugh at chumps who had to work on days like this. Awww, it’s probably karma coming back to haunt me.

—Program Transcript, 18 February, 2013

Of course, he’s not the only witness who has had trouble with his memory.

I do not recall.

—1975 Grand Jury Testimony, Richard Nixon

Forty Years Later …


Yesterday, the day that President Obama invoked executive privilege, was the fortieth anniversary of The 18-Minute Gap in the Watergate scandal. It is interesting to compare and contrast WaPo’s coverage and commentary on the topic of executive privilege then and now. All the President’s Men seem to be at the Post in 2012.

UPDATE–My bad! Some of them are at the New York Times.