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“CBS News Correspondent Roger Mudd- CBS News covering President Richard Nixon’s resignation speech in August, 1974. (I wasn’t born yet!) …”

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

CBS News covering President Richard Nixon’s resignation speech in August, 1974. (I wasn’t born yet!) Of course because of President Nixon’s involvement in the Watergate break in in 1972 where employees of the Richard Nixon Reelection Campaign, broke into Democratic National Headquarters at the Watergate Hotel in Washington in the summer of 1972. After it became clear because of President Nixon’s presidential tapes that the President ordered the coverup. he lost most of whatever support he had left in Congress. At least enough in the House and even in his own party to prevent him from being impeached by the House with a bipartisan majority and win a conviction trial in the Senate. The President would have been impeached by the House and convicted by the Senate. That is how Congress can remove the President and Vice President from office. Congressional Republicans led by Senator Barry Goldwater, but Senate Minority Leader Hugh Scott and House Minority Leader John Rhodes, told President Nixon that the gig was up, so to speak. Went to the White House and told the President he can’t survive Watergate and if he tries to he’ll be removed from off by Congress.

That is why President Richard Nixon resigned from office. Because had he not he would have faced a worst embarressment of being removed from office by Congress and perhaps losing half of his own party in the House and Senate on those votes. Senate Republicans told President Nixon that he might have twenty votes for acquittal in the Senate if it went that far. You need 34 to defeat impeachment in the Senate and Republicans had 45 seats in the Senate in that Congress. More than enough to defeat an impeachment trial if they’re united on it. President Nixon had calculated that he would probably get impeached by the Democratic House that had roughly 260 seats, but the win the conviction trial in the Senate. But Senator Goldwater told the President that he didn’t have enough votes in the Senate for that and that he Barry Goldwater would vote for conviction. Perhaps Richard Nixon did want to end this and save the country from seeng their President impeached and convicted. But it’s clear that a big part of him resigning was to save himself from further embarrassment.

This Democratic Congress of 1973-74, was ready to get past impeachment and deal with other issues. Like making sure the Vietnam War ended swiftly and properly, the country was going through a recession and lacked affordable energy, inflation was becoming a big problem, rising unemployment, etc. But just as long as President Nixon was removed one way or another from office. Whether they had to do that themselves or the President voluntarily stepped down. So as Roger Mudd and Dan Rather were talking about as far as whether the House would go through on impeachment anyway even with the President resigning, there was no appetite for that in either the Democratic Caucus or Republican Caucus. And the Democratic Senate wanted nothing to do with an impeachment trial and neither did Senate Republicans, especially if the President already decided to voluntarily resign. Richard Nixon being the master politician he was, knew when to fold and when he lost all support which is why he resigned from office.

World Opinion Forum-CBS News: Coverage of President Richard Nixon’s Resignation- Roger Mudd vs Dan Rather: ‘Go Soft on Nixon’

 

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CBS News

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

James Whitey Bulger
To say that James Whitey Bulger is not your average criminal would be like saying that Larry Bird isn’t your average basketball player. (Another famous Boston figure) I’m not a criminologist obviously and yes it also snows in Minnesota, (thanks Captain Obvious) but Whitey is a criminal genius. And if he gets to spend any real-time outside of his cell in the hell hole that he’s going to die in his fellow inmates are going to be able to learn a lot from him. Unless they’re serving life without in prison as well. Here’s a guy whose guilty of at least nineteen murders and yet up until recently hasn’t spent much of his life in prison. He’s been on the streets for most of his life.

Neo-Nazis
I think the only way you can become a Nazi especially as an adult is like the guy in this story. Is that by in large you’re a good person and you’re doing well in life, but suddenly you find yourself out of work and your bills are piling up and you go years without at least a full-time job. You lose your home and perhaps now living a one-room apartment, or maybe in the basement of your parents home. And you’re trying to figure out where you go from there and you run in people you should have nothing to do with. And they start telling you about the dangers of the other races. In this case non-Caucasians in America especially non-Anglo Saxons. I have a hard time believing that a good person whose grown up with people from other races and ethnicities would suddenly become a racist for no apparent reason.
CBS News: This Morning; How The FBI Caught Whitey Bulger

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The Quote Master

The Quote Master

Source: CBS News: Baseball Great Yogi Berra Dead 90: An icon of Sports and Quotes

I think it would be fairly easy just to write a piece about Yogi Berra featuring a lot of his great one-liners. But we’re talking about one of the top 3-5 catchers in the history of Major League Baseball. And yes he was a great comedian, but how many catchers do you know of that were great behind the plate who also have a career 285 bating average with 358 home runs and 1430 RBI. At least statistically we’re talking about a better hitting catcher than Johnny Bench who is still the best all around catcher of all-time. Yogi is at least the best all around catcher pre-Johnny Bench who came up with the Cincinnati Reds in 1967.

As far as his humor I love people who put things in a very direct way telling it exactly how it is and using humor with it. Especially when they’re not making fun of someone, or some group of people. Who can say ironic things and stuff that they know can’t be true, but do it so well and intentionally that you have to laugh at it. Like the Yogi line about baseball being 90% half mental. Well anyone with a basic understanding of mathematics knows that can’t be true. But he was so clever about how he said that, that you had to laugh at that. Or saying obvious things, but doing it with perfect timing that again you have to laugh. “When you come to a fork in road, take it.”

“You can observe a lot just by watching.” Which of course sounds like Captain Obvious under attack and everyone must duck, or get hit in the head with useless information that they’ve known since they were born. But if you’re not someone who tends to be very good about knowing your surroundings and tend to miss things that are right in front of you, that little piece of obvious information can help you. And tell you to pay attention so you don’t miss what is going on right in front of you.

“It aint over till it’s over.” Good message for players who are down a lot in a game, but still have time to turn it around. And instead of thinking, “damn we suck! We’re not only going to get blown out, but we might not bother to score!” You would have Yogi saying something like, “relax, I know its 6-0, but its only the 3rd inning. Besides I got a guy in there who can actually pitch now. So just relax and play the game right and we’ll get back in it.” Telling his players there’s a reason why a World Series is seven games and games themselves are nine innings, because you don’t win those things early on.

Yogi Berra, again one of the top 3-5 catchers of all-time, but similar to Billy Martin and Phil Rizzuto if he wasn’t playing and managing baseball, he could have been a great comedian and talk show host as well. Because of his ability to put things exactly as they are with a little touch of great wit. Which is what great one-liners are. The ability to use common sense to make fun of life and even people in life. The ability to state the obvious without someone saying,”no shit Einstein! You got any other brand new discoveries you would like to share with us?” And because of that and I think especially the humor he’s going to be missed for a long time.

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Fidel Castro
This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on WordPress

This was just after the Castro Communists had taken power in Cuba in 1958, from the authoritarian Batista Regime there, after winning the Cuban Civil War. Cuba replaces one authoritarian regime from Fulgencio Batista and creates a new one with Fidel Castro. I saw a documentary about Che Guevara last week and it featured a lot of Fidel in the same film. For obvious reasons and they essentially said Fidel wasn’t sure exactly what type of government he would replace the Batista Regime with. That he became a Marxist Communist, leftist dictatorial authoritarian after he came to power as President of the New Communist Republic of Cuba. But Fidel was never a Democrat Socialist or otherwise. He’s always believed in socialism and what it can do for people. But never believed in governing the country through democratic means. With allowing any time of real opposition, or decentralizing power to anyone else outside of his regime in Cuba.

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The Tenement
This post was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

At risk of sounding political, but I’ll also be factual here, what you see in this film and community is the failures of public housing in America. And essentially forced segregation of not just the races, but of the economic classes for lack of a better term in America. Where you had middle class communities that are doing well. Upper class communities that are doing very well. And then lower class communities where the people there get what is left. Which is run-down apartment buildings, run-down schools. High crime rates where no one with real money wants to invest. And you create a community that looks like a big city inside of a third world country.

Public housing by itself is not a problem because that has prevented a lot of homelessness in America. But how its been run and managed in America especially for the kids being trapped in such run-down communities in run-down neighborhoods. A lot of times in single-parent families where the father is out of the picture for one reason or another. Where the mother might not even have a high school diploma let alone any college experience. Working two or three jobs to support her several kids, if she’s working at all. And having communities like this has serious costs. For the people who live there obviously, but for the country as a whole that has to try to makeup for what these families aren’t able to provide for themselves.

And the way public housing has been run in America has negatively affected the African-American community probably more than any community in the country other than the American-Indian community. Because African-Americans have generally had a poverty level twice that of the national average. And much higher than the Caucasian-American and Asian-American communities in America. And this is something that we should stop doing as a country and instead having public housing buildings in middle class communities. With education, job training and work opportunities for the people in these communities so they don’t have to live in public housing at all.

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Demonstrators Picketing Kress Company for Lunch Counter Discrimination
This post was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

I think the point of this film is that a lot that has been written about African-Americans about American history has been incorrect and stuff that is true about the community has been left out. Which almost fifty-years later is pretty obvious, but back in 1968 it certainly wasn’t. And that African-Americans themselves probably weren’t very familiar with their history especially the positive aspects of it. And probably weren’t even taught about it. It wasn’t until the 1880s or so that African-Americans were allowed to learn how to read, let alone get an education. Because they were treated by Caucasian-Americans as animals.

The other point being that a lot that has been written and portrayed about the African-American community has not just been racist, but simply false. The Birth of The Nation film from 1918 is an excellent example of that. And then go to the movies starting in the 1930s or so featuring African-Americans were portrayed as servants to Caucasians. Or were seen as criminals that no man would ever dare let their daughters be anywhere near. That fact is left obvious even back then because all Americans were familiar with the movies and TV and all had access to them for the most part.

I think the whole point of African-American History Month is to correct many wrongs that were written about the community in the past. And not portray the African-American community as perfect, because no community is. But to give a more balance look at the community and to point out that this community has given a lot to America from day one and even before we officially became the United States. And to show that even though this community still has a lot of challenges in America, they are by far the most successful African community in the world. That has contributed a lot to America and then some.

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Black Panthers

Black Panthers


This post was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

To me at least Black Power wasn’t one movement, but a larger movement with several different sub-divisions. You had the more socialist if not Marxist revolutionary Black Panthers on the Far-Left with their own militia. You had Malcolm X and his movement that was sort of in the middle. That was truly about freedom and individualism for the African-American community and for them to be free to live their own lives. And you had the more social democratic pacifist movement led by Martin Luther King and his organization as well. But all of these groups essentially had similar if not the same goals, but with different tactics in how to accomplish those goals.

All three of these groups wanted power for the entire African-American community. That would not longer be forced to live under poverty, racism and have to be second-class citizens to Caucasian-Americans. I think one of the tragedies of Malcolm X being murdered in 1965 is that he and his movement I believe would’ve been a bumper between the Black Panthers and the MLK group. And perhaps without the Malcolm X being murdered maybe we don’t see the race riots that we did in 1965 and 66. We’ll never know that, but he was moderating before he was murdered in 1965 and maybe we would’ve seen that.

Black Power for the most part wasn’t about having African-Americans throwing the Caucasian community out of power in the 1960s and overthrowing the U.S. Government. It was about empowering an entire community of Americans to be able to live in their own freedom as well. And no longer forced to live under anyone else’s authority. The Black Panthers might have had more extreme leftist goals of overthrowing and entire country. But generally speaking the people in Black Power movement was about empowering African-Americans. And only using violence when it was used against them.

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