Friday, July 29, 2022

Return To Never Was

I remember 1969,  when you couldn’t escape news about the moon landing. The whole world was watching that night in July. Literally, the whole world.

 I remember every space flight from Alan Shephard on; you couldn’t escape news about any of them. The Kennedy assassination in ‘63. I even saw Ruby shoot Oswald. I was 8, but you couldn’t escape it.

I was 18 in ‘73, and I remember a lot of people not watching the Watergate hearings. John Dean happened on the evening news, not live in our living rooms. The hearings were during the week, not pre-empting prime time TeeVee. They were also long, complex affairs, with questions primarily from lawyers: legal counsel for the Dems and the Republicans. It was a sign of how serious the hearings were. There wasn’t a lot of grandstanding, except from Gordon Liddy, Nixon’s version of Bannon. And the narrative was very hard to ferret out. 

Dean, tapes, gaps in tapes, Haldemann/Ehrlichmann; CREEP; Ellsberg’s psychiatrist, a cast of seeming thousands. Even if you didn’t try to avoid it, you found it hard to follow.

And a lot of people didn’t try. The Nixon tapes were published, in the middle of it. They were a bestseller. I had a copy, long lost now. It achieved the definition of a classic: a book everyone praises and no one reads. I never finished it.

So don’t treat it as a nostalgic time we could all go back to “if only.”  “Same as it ever was,” is much more accurate.

No comments:

Post a Comment