Friday, February 20, 2009

Good for him ...

... and them: Conservatives to Honor Liberal Icon George McGovern.

I voted for him in 1972. And I still think it was the right vote. (Surprised?)
McGovern may have been liberal, but Nixon was no conservative. And McGovern remains a decent, genuinely patriotic American.


  1. And, unlike those people who write and tell me, "I am a lifelong conservative" - you know who you bare - I am exactly that.

  2. During the 1972 election I was attending Penn State at the main campus in State College, PA.

    I was a Navy veteran and had recently come home from Vietnam and Southeast Asia. I was then, and am now, a conservative, and I was supporting Nixon because of his Vietnam actions.

    I saw and knew of his postive actions during the war, reversing the awful rules of engagement issued by the previous president, Lydon Johnson.

    Frank is right, Nixon was certainly not a conservative, but he was to the right of McGovern.

    Penn State was a beehive of political action for McGovern, much like we saw with Obama.

    I was part of a group of Vietnam veterans Penn State recruited, and many of the veterans supported the war, which McGovern opposed. In fact, his statement that he would crawl to the Viet Cong (those vicious, murderous bastards) to secure "peace" infuriated us.

    But to fair, when one of my Vietnam vet friends called McGovern a foul name, I reminded him that McGovern was a decorated WWII veteran, and although I disagreed with his Vietnam views and his liberal, social views (much like Obama today), he appeared to be a decent man of principal.

    Today we see McGovern standing up to his fellow liberals.

    Nixon, on the other hand did some amazing things as president, including ending the Vietnam War.

    Although I felt he gave too much to the North Vietnamese communists in the agreement, his policy of "Vietnamization" did effectively end the active American combat by 1972. The only Americans left in Vietnam were support elements and advisors.

    Then came Watergate. There is no evidence that Nixon ordered the break-in, but he clearly broke the law in his attempt to kill the investigation.

    Due to his forced resignation and disgrace, the Democrats in Congress were able to enact the "War Powers" act (which McGovern supported), which limited the combat actions a president can initiate.

    The North Vietnamese saw an oppurtunity to invade the South. They did in 1975, defeating the South Vietnamese in combat, not the American military.

    Had Nixon not broke the law, Vietnam would be like Korea today, with a strong democracy in the South and a police state in the North.

    Even so, I still believe that McGovern would have brought a stuning defeat for America with our early withdrawl from Vietnam.

    But having said that, I believed then, as I do now, that McGovern was a man of principal. I just don't agree with his principals

    Paul Davis

  3. I pretty much agree with what you say, Paul (though Nixon also gave us the EPA, price controls, an expanded bureaucracy and much, much more - I think he was mostly a New Deal liberal), but I think, had McGovern won I suspect he would have been more careful and would not have wanted to preside over what happened. Of course, that's pure counterfactual speculation on my part.What happened was the Democratic-controlled Congress playing politics with the war to damage Ford.

  4. Frank,

    No argument on Nixon's economic policies here.

    As for McGovern, You are perhaps right in that he would have changed his worldview if he became president - as I hope that Obama will change.

    Have you ever seen "The President's Analyst" with James Coburn?

    If not, it's a funny, brillant film in which an Coburn portrays a psychologist who has to meet with the president so he can unburden himself.

    You never see Coburn meeting with the president, but you cleverly see Coburn leaving the office after each visit.

    And after each visit Coburn is progressivly more shocked by what he is hearing.

    I can guess at some of the stuff Obama hears in his security briefings. One would hope these briefings would sober a man - even "The One."