Tuesday, March 12th, 2013
My Dear America:
I am pleased to report that even though I was not able to arrange to actually attend the Common Cause Conference on "The Lessons of Watergate" it appears that I will not completely lose out on participating in the conference because at least some of the presentations will be broadcast streaming online on the Common Cause website www.commoncause.org.
I am pleased for many reasons to be able to take advantage of an online participation in this Conference for quite a few reasons. It is difficult for me to comprehend the fact that it has been 40 years since The Watergate Scandal erupted and for several years preyed on you and I and our consciences, America until we were finally able to shake Richard Nixon off our backs and out of the White House like the barnacle on the ship of progress that he truly was.
I found myself in those bygone days in the 70's and paying a lot of attention to Watergate and especially the Senate Watergate Hearings while I was recovering from a very serious and life threatening operation. I found that a way to write about my feelings concerning Watergate was similar to the way I am presently communicating with you, by way of writing letters to you, America, as if you were (are) a person with whom I can communicate.
I gathered those letters to you about Watergate and later on wrote more letters to communicate about later instances of Watergate history, such as the final outing of Mark Felt as "Deep Throat," as well as the deaths of Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. All of those letters and other information about Watergate that I thought was significant have been included in my Watergate History, "Letters To A Lost Nation: A Watergate Chronicle," which is available as a Kindle book or a paperback book through Amazon.com and can also be bought through clicking on the image of the book's cover on this website. I learned a lot through writing that book and continue to be interested in the topic of Watergate these 40 years later, after the fact.
Some of the lessons of Watergate that I have learned are the following:
When it comes to your Government, Executive and Legislative Branches:
Trust but Verify.
In the case of not only Watergate but probably every other Executive Branch and Legislative branch of Government that we have ever had, much secrecy and in some cases obvious criminality is going on behind the scenes and is being covered up.
When the Chips were down and we needed every branch of the Federal Government to be doing it's Job, the system eventually worked although it took awhile.
Although the wheels of justice turned at a snails pace in the case of Watergate, eventually, although Richard Nixon never spent a day in jail man,y of his henchmen did and in the end, largely through the efforts of the Senate Watergate Committee, the House Judiciary Committee and the Watergate Special Prosecutors, Judge Sirica and the Supreme Court, the system finally worked and we moved on from Watergate.
Politicians do not always do what is right for the people they represent and the American People need to do more to pay attention to and get involved in their government and not allow Politicians to do whatever they want without any consequences to bad decisions or bad behavior on their part.
Although I am sure that there are many other lessons to be learned from Watergate I will leave the rest up to others.
I urge whoever can arrange their schedules to do so, however, to join with Common Cause and if you can't attend "The Lessons of Watergate" in person at least attend online.
I am looking forward to watching and listening to such Watergate All Stars as William Cohen (Republican) and Elizabeth Holtzman (Democrat), both members of the House Judiciary Committee who voted articles of Impeachment against President Richard Nixon and finally caused Nixon to resign.
Also the distributor of the Pentagon Papers, Daniel Ellsberg will be there. Nixon and Company were so obsessed with Ellsberg that Nixon's black bag operations crew, "The Plumbers" broke into Ellsberg's Psychiatrist's office in Los Angeles to try to find dirt on him. They were not successful in finding the dirt they were looking for.
Richard Ben Veniste, one of the Watergate Special Prosecutor's Assistant Prosecutors will also be there with many other notables including Former Senator Russ Feingold.
I'm gearing up my computer right now and I am looking forward to what I believe will be a very interesting and inspiring Conference beginning tomorrow.