Today they’ll be burying one of the people most responsible for helping jump-start the careers of two of the most corrupt individuals ever to wield executive power: Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney. Jerry Ford was being eulogized so sweetly in the mainstream press that I was gagging on the sickeningly sweet saccharin, sugar molasses and arsenic concoction. For all of you prosecutorial types who tell us that criminals need to be brought to justice so that the victims can have “closure”, the Nixon pardon is quite difficult to explain, isn’t it?
Thanks to Jason Miller at P! for offering something other than the vile concoction that all of the mainstream press is serving up to the ever gullible public. Go here to read the whole thing. And for those of you who think we are all sour grapes here at Bad Attitudes, read on till the end of this post. We did, at the very least, have something kind to say.
Now that you have perused samples of the rubbish our oligarch overlords are attempting to burnish into the minds of their unsuspecting plebeian underlings, consider how the affable “Jerry” enabled or caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands of human beings and ensured that the ruling elite in the United States would reclaim the power they had begrudgingly ceded to the masses in the face of economic upheaval, civil unrest, and powerful progressive movements.
Like our current unitary executive, Ford did not get into the Oval Office by winning an election. Also like Bush, in spite of the fact that the people did not vote him into office, Ford brazenly defied the will of the American public on an issue of great magnitude. Exercising the integrity of the mythologized Ford, “Jerry” fulfilled his end of the bargain he had made with Alexander Haig. In exchange for his ascendancy to the Empire’s throne, he shielded Richard Nixon from facing consequences for his multiple grievous transgressions of international and domestic laws.
Paving the way for Reagan and his successors to marginalize America’s poor, minorities, and working class and to gut our Constitution, Ford pardoned Richard Nixon, chose to keep habitual war criminal Henry Kissinger on as his Secretary of State, and elevated future mass murderers, Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney to key White House positions.
Letting Nixon off the hook was a particularly sinister act in at least two ways. Ford, an unelected president in a purported constitutional republic, absolved a fellow patrician of grave violations of international law, the public trust, and the US Constitution. Thus Ford became Nixon’s accomplice. At the same time, he landed a crushing blow for the moneyed class in their persistent assault on the republic envisioned by men like Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine.
Bear in mind that Ford pardoned a man who was responsible for the deaths of at least 600,000 innocent civilians. During the invasion and occupation of Vietnam, Nixon ordered secret bombings of neighboring Cambodia. The goal was to strike North Vietnamese supply and transit routes, but unfortunately for the Cambodian people, the B-52 carpet bombings did not distinguish the nationalities of victims.
Nixon’s use of illegal wire-taps was such a flagrant abuse of executive authority that Congress passed the FISA Law in 1978 to prevent similar breaches of Constitutional law. In the wake of Nixon’s immunity from prosecution, the Bush Regime has subsequently ignored the FISA Laws and run roughshod over the Constitution, without consequence. Thank you for setting the precedent, “Jerry”.
Ford also enabled Nixon to evade prosecution for obstruction of justice, perjury and possible income tax evasion. The IRS eventually ordered Nixon to pay $467,000, a relative pittance for a man of his means.
Despite the damage and suffering they left in their wake, Nixon and Ford both lived in security and wealth until their mortality finally caught up with them.Like his predecessor, Ford was quite enamored with Henry Kissinger. He once summarized him with this quip: “wonderful person. Dear friend. First-class Secretary of State. But Henry always protected his own flanks.”
Obviously, Gerald Ford was far more shrewd and Machiavellian than the mainstream media’s recent wave of white-washing would indicate. Aside from his complicity in Nixon’s crimes (for which our Ministry of Truth has exculpated Ford by concluding that the pardon was necessary to “heal the nation”), and his role in the carnage in East Timor, he also aligned himself closely with J. Edgar Hoover.
Admittedly, some of the positive qualities and deeds the corporatized Fourth Estate has recently been attributing to Gerald Ford are true.