Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Our Long National Daydream

Is Over.

There is nothing more to be said about Gerald Ford, so I’ll keep this short.

Jerry pardoned Dick.

That’s really it. Jerry pardoned Dick for what may have been perfectly principled reasons, but the simple truth is, in doing so, he let a dangerous and destructive genie out of the bottle.

In an era famous for its “Silent Majority” of hardcore, hardhat, pig-eyed Republicans squealing that lazy hippies only needed to be beaten a little harder, buzz-cut and sent of to the ‘Nam to straighten ‘em out, Ford – the Republican -- let Nixon -- war criminal and betrayer of his office and our Constitution -- walk, instead of paying the price for his crime.

We were we told that "healing" and getting past our "national nightmare" of Republican domestic treason and wartime crimes against humanity were somehow vastly less important than the same Party that wanted to lock up pot smokers until the end of time.

We figured that maybe, just maybe, the GOP would learn its lesson, let cooler, Ford-like heads prevail, and quit trying the use the United States Constitution as ass-floss.

We were, of course, utterly wrong, and the fact that the greatest criminal to ever occupy the White House was given a "Get Out Of Jail Free" backstage laminate by the Law and Order Party is a sickening irony that the thugs and perverts who run the GOP have spent years carefully leveraging into a deep, wide moat around their criminal syndicate.

Nixon deserved nothing – nothing! – but to be shackled hand-and-foot and perpwalked in sackcloth and dung through every Middlesex village and farm. To be mocked and shunned and laughed at and spit on by children for the rest of his miserable life.

Chained to a block in the public square (as either Harlan Ellison or Hunter Thompson once suggested) with every American entitled to one slap.

If you lost a limb or a loved one in Vietnam, you could use your closed fist.

In letting him skate -- instead of letting the criminal justice system napalm the fascist Thalidomide babies squirming around in the GOP whelping box and cauterize the Constitution against their wasting disease -- Ford allowed the sickness that was killing the soul of his Party survive, mutate, and come roaring back less than ten years later.

And more virulent, more hateful, and more openly, frantically horny for an end to Constitutional government and the establishment of a Thermonuclear Christian Empire than Nixon ever dreamed of.

Ford also told New York City to fuck off and a few other things of varying degrees of bad ideaness.

And yet he took a shitty job at a perilous time and played a pat, losing hand in a way that may have been the best it could have been played.

I don’t know, but with the when you consider the suite of awful-to-Apocalyptic alternatives that Preznit Drinky has left us with in Iraq, it is worth taking a moment to consider with some humility and charity that the store is not always stocked with choices that are good.

In other words, you face History with the choices you have at the moment, not the ones you wish you had later on.

That being said, the reason to miss Gerald Ford is he was the last Republican leader who wielded genuine influence within his Party who is not a whore, a Bible-thumping hate-monger, or a despicable prick.

There are Republicans who I could respect for what they allegedly stand for, but for the fact that the Party they continue to defend beyond all reason completely abandoned them and their ethos long ago. Left them face-down, with a gen-u-ine complimentary souvenir “Justice Sunday” day-glow plastic Cross rammed up their asses all the way to the tiny, flashing “INRI” LED.

They are left humiliated in the ditch, nose-deep in their own blood and filth, and yet like St. John McCain, they crawl obediently back to Jerry Falwell’s Elephantine Buttocks Kissing Booth and beg for more.

The struggle for Conservatives has always been to find a way market their essentially contemptible and anti-Democratic ideology to the people they're planning to fuck over. And if Reagan was “Radical Conservatism with a Smile”, and Bush is “Corporate Theocracy with a Dimwit Smirk”, then Ford was at least Moderation with a Midwest Accent.

He was perhaps the last Republican of standing one could point to and say that there was anything but bile, sanctimony and fascism left in the GOP soul.

And now, that long nation daydream is over.

Or, for all you Aldous Huxley fans out there: "Ford is Bunk" -- History.

(Oh, and for those of you keeping score at home, this is post #900.)


Anonymous said...

Once again DG.... cut to the muscle.

...Geralad Ford the only man to be Vice President and President with out having been elected...with the exception of 43...who was appointed once and fraudulently renewed.

...I will mourn neither.

sightunseen said...

900 posts, eh? And I've enjoyed every single one of them. Thank you for all that you do. I mean that.

arghous said...

That being said, the reason to miss Gerald Ford is he was the last Republican leader who wielded genuine influence within his Party who is not a whore, a Bible-thumping hate-monger, or a despicable prick.

Genuine influence? And how did Mr. Moderation wield this awesome power? By shutting the fuck up. How very Powellesqe of him. Sounds like a whore and despicable prick to me.

(h/t to alicublog)

justme said...

Little did Jerry know, but our long national nightmare was only beginning, and it continues to this day, fueled in no small part by his very own appointees Dick and Don.

Anonymous said...

the fact that the greatest criminal to ever occupy the White House was given a "Get Out Of Jail Free" backstage laminate

Shouldn't that be "greatest criminal up to that point in our history"? I admit I was a young man during Watergate, so my memories of Nixon may be watered down by time, but I suspect that if there is a hell, Bush will be burning in a far darker, lower, and hotter circle than Nixon.

Anonymous said...

We were on the same wavelength today Drifty...I linky-loved you at my place.
The "Accidental" President is the post.

1988dylan said...

You rarely miss a beat, but you can't say he pardoned Nixon and then turn around and say that Ford was not a whore. Ford was a whore. He said he wouldn't do it (pardon Nixon) and then he turned right round and did it anyway. Turned right round and propelled Rummy and Cheney (and by extention Raygun and the entire BFEE) into our future.

Martini said...

I certainly appreciate that Nixon was a low-down dirty skunk who deserved everything Drifty suggests. But to call him a wartime criminal because of Vietnam is to let Johnson completely off the hook. Johnson deserves at least as much grief for his role in that tragedy.

Thing is, the Democratic party actually did learn a little something about military caution and humility from Vietnam. The GOP still blames the loss on Cronkite, like every good conspiracy theorist should.

driftglass said...

Never mentioned Johnson because this was about Ford and his response to the resignations and imminent prosecution, and I only wanted to write a post about such, and not a book about Vietnam. But yes, Johnson deserves a seat in Hell for his part in that bloody tragedy right next to Nixon.

A crime must have motive, method and opportunity and I simply leave a little room in my beverage for the possibility that Ford actually thought pardoning the prick was the lesser of 3-4 evils. I deeply disagree and the sins and sinners it spawned speak for themselves, but omniscient I am not and I can't speak to whether or not Ford's motives were honorable for doing the foolish thing he did. So absent proof of motive...reasonable doubt.

Thus ends this episode of "CSI: Impeachment" :-)