Watergate: America’s Finest Hour

Many people think of the 1970s and Watergate as low-water marks in America’s political history, but personally, I think of it as one of our finest hours. For once, the system worked.

The president and vice president were forced to resign in disgrace for their crimes. The attorney general and deputy attorney general resigned on principle, rather than fire the special prosecutor investigating the administration. When the dust settled from the Watergate investigations, more than 40 people, including dozens of senior White House officials, were indicted, tried, convicted, and imprisoned.

The US was forced to abandon a pointless and criminal war overseas. The Church Committee turned out of control and secretive intelligence agencies inside out. Congress passed major legislation imposing restraint on spying and war powers.

And probably the most beneficial outcome of all? The very reason most politicos think the ’70s were a terrible time for America: because “the people lost faith in government.”

Hell. I’m getting a little nostalgic.

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Daniel Bier

Daniel Bier

Daniel Bier is the executive editor of The Skeptical Libertarian.

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