Blogs > HNN > The Ford Funeral ... one for the books

Jan 3, 2007 1:14 pm

The Ford Funeral ... one for the books

Under ordinary circumstances it would have been a strange funeral.

Kissinger, that Banqo's ghost from the past, standing near Cheney, the neo-con's neo-con who despised detente.

The man who was right about Iraq (Father Bush) standing next to the man who was wrong (Son Bush).

And we forget now in the hazy glow of history how divided the Ford administration was. These guys from the past wanted to kill each other under Ford. It was Nixon people vs. Ford people. Hardliners vs. Detenters. Betty supporters vs. Ford handlers. And Ford himself at the top unable to do anything about it because he was such a nice guy.

And as if all that weren't enough, you have this roomful of people who read just a few days before what Ford himself actually thought of them. Maureen Dowd caught this aspect of the funeral superbly in this morning's NYT:

As Poppy spoke from the altar, praising Mr. Ford’s generosity, he must have been mulling that his predecessor was ungenerous in spitting on him from the grave. Mr. Ford told Mr. Beschloss that Bush Senior had sold out the party to the hard right and had taken a phony, pandering position on abortion.

Poppy had to have enjoyed watching Dr. K get up and lavish praise on his old boss, after Mr. Ford had sniggered to Bob Woodward that the “coy” Bavarian diva had “the thinnest skin of any public figure I ever knew.”

W. graciously walked Betty Ford down the aisle, even as he must have curdled inside about her husband’s telling Mr. Woodward that it had been “a big mistake” on the part of W., Dick Cheney and Rummy to justify the Iraq war with nonexistent W.M.D. “I just don’t think we should go hellfire damnation around the globe freeing people, unless it is directly related to our own national security,” he said.

The only one missing from yesterday's event was Al Haig.

Apparently he had the good sense not to show up. (Was he even invited?)

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Henry Zeus - 1/4/2007

Haig was, indeed, at the funeral at the National Cathedral. Didn't you see him schmoozing with Carl Bernstein. Now, there's a pair of real beauties.

Haig is far more of a ghost than Kissinger, and I'm rather surprised at the reference you made to Banqo.