Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Lessons of Watergate from the year when nobody cares anymore

Lesson #1
Every scandal from Watergate onward would have "gate" attached to it. "Angolagate", "Irangate", "Coingate", "Travelgate", "Cablegate", etc.

Lessong #2
No American president would again be held accountable for his actions in office. Bill Clinton was impeached for lying about receiving a blowjob, but he did not resign his office over it.

Lesson #3
Partisanship is the answer.

In the documentary Watergate: 784 Days that Changed America, a few Republican loyalists hung on to the bitter end supporting Richard Nixon, but when the "smoking gun" evidence of wrongdoing came to light, they voted against him.

Never again would evidence play such a role in politics again.

From 1974 onward, Washington has been as staged, scripted, rigged and choreographed as professional wrestling, the narrative demanding the Bleeding Heart Spaghetti Spines (Dems) be on top sometimes and other times the Bullet-headed Hard Hearts (Republicans) be on top.

It's no different than Wrestlemania.

Lesson #4
Partisanship heals no wounds, but selfishly and self-defeatingly stems political bleeding. In Washington, that's enough.

When partisanship appears to be failing, pile on more. When more is not enough, pile on more.

Lesson #5
Yes, the general public is that stupid. Tell them anything and they'll believe it. Really, anything. Anything at all. Absolutely anything. Or, nothing at all. It would never matter again.

Lesson #6
"Let them eat cake" became a viable political strategy, as Ronald Reagan so ably proved during his scourge in office.

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