Well, I've just finished my Watergate investigation - just finished reading 'All the President's Men'. Great book. Very suspenseful. Watched the movie this week, too, which was just OK. I really should have gotten this post in yesterday, on the anniversary of the Watergate break-in. Part of the fascination of all of this for me is having been born just over 5 months before the Watergate break-in.
I have an 'older' friend who has said a couple of times since the Felt confession that Nixon will go down in history as a great president who basically would have been fine if he hadn't tried to cover-up the Watergate break-in.
I hope that's not true. I hope Nixon won't go down in history as a great president. On my reading, he shaded toward fascism - an arch-conservative who was extremely paranoid and used his power to try to insure its furtherance.
At a minimum, Nixon hired extremely shady people. the Nixon Administration was a culture of illeagality. Agnew was on the take. Kissinger approved wire taps of former aides. Mitchell was a crook. Stans was a crook. I'm a little surprised at how many people who worked with Nixon went on to political fame and fortune: George Shultz, Pat Buchannan, Caspar Weinberger, Alexander Haig. Bob Dole defended Nixon in speeches against the Washington Post.
After he knew about Watergate, he lied to try to cover it up. He never recanted, did he? The dude WAS a crook who tarnished the office of the President.
Chuck Colson has become a high-profile Evangelical. He often has good things to see and his Prison Fellowship ministries have been very important. But for him to come out and criticize Mark Felt for breaking the law in the midst of a 'legal' system that was totally subverted blows my mind. I understand he's concerned about utilitarianism, but I REALLY don't think he's the one to carry this message on this topic.
An interesting article: How Deep Throat Fooled the FBI
Recent comments by John Dean. His book, Worse than Watergate, has a distasteful title