Legacy Of Nixon tapes: Skepticism, distrust enduretags: AP, Richard Nixon, White House tapes, Nixon
WASHINGTON (AP) — It's a good thing Richard Nixon was such a klutz.
The president's ineptness at all things mechanical is what prompted his aides to install a voice-activated recording system that didn't require Nixon to push an on-off button, ensuring that every word he spoke in the Oval Office and other key locations was caught on tape.
With the secret taping system on autopilot — seven microphones planted in wall sconces and the president's desk — Nixon largely forgot about it, and let loose with the raw, gossipy, conniving and too-clever words that ultimately toppled his presidency and forever changed the way Americans think about their presidents and their government.
The tapes — the last installment of them released Wednesday — are like the black box in an increasingly out-of-control airplane, recording right up to the crash.
In the tapes, Americans began to see their presidents as "less glorious, less heroic, less romantic — either more like us, or more like people we don't like," says presidential historian Julian Zelizer of Princeton University....
comments powered by Disqus
- 150 years later, schools are still a battlefield for interpreting Civil War
- Where are America's memorials to pain of slavery, black resistance?
- Richmond split over Confederate history
- The World's Jewish Population Is Nearing Pre-Holocaust Levels
- Bernie Sanders’s Revolutionary Roots Were Nurtured in ’60s Vermont
- Did a historian who said he’s a victim of McCarthyism get the story wrong?
- Stephanie Coontz’s work on the history of marriage cited by the Supreme Court.
- NYT History Book Reviews: Who Got Noticed this Week?
- David Hackett Fischer wins $100,000 prize for lifetime achievement in military writing