let’s review: Hunter Thompson’s obituary for Richard Nixon

Thanks, Corporate News! 

The best example ever of non-objective journalism.

NOTES ON THE PASSING OF AN AMERICAN MONSTER….HE WAS A LIAR ND A QUITTER, AND HE SHOULD HAVE BEEN BURIED AT SEA. …BUT HE WAS, AFTER ALL, THE PRESIDENT.

“And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is becoming the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.”–REVELATION 18:2

Richard Nixon is gone now and I am poorer for it. He was the real thing–a political monster straight out of Grendel and a very dangerous enemy. He could shake your hand and stab you in the back at the same time. He lied to his friends and betrayed the trust of his family. Not even Gerald Ford, the unhappy ex-president who pardoned Nixon and kept him out of prison, was immune to the evil fallout. Ford, who believes strongly in Heaven and Hell, has told more than one of his celebrity golf partners that I know Iwill go to hell, because I pardoned Richard Nixon…”

These are harsh words for a man only recently canonized by President Clinton and my old friend George McGovern–but I have written worse things about Nixon, many times, and the record will show that I kicked him repeatedly long before he went down. I beat him like a mad dog with mange every time I got a chance, and I am proud of it. He was scum.

Some people will say that words like scum and rotten are wrong for Objective Journalism–which is true, but they miss the point. It was the built-in blind spots of the Objective rules and dogma that allowed Nixon to slither into the White House in the first place. He looked so good on paper that you could almost vote for him sight unseen. He seemed so all-American, so much like Horatio Alger, that he was able to slip through the cracks of Objective Journalism. You had to get Subjective to see Nixon clearly, and the shock of recognition was often painful…

He has poisoned our water forever. Nixon will be remembered as a classic case of a smart man shitting in his own nest. But he also shit in our nests, and that was the crime that history will burn on his memory like a brand. By disgracing and degrading the Presidency of the United States, by fleeing the White House like a diseased cur, Richard Nixon broke the heart of the American Dream…

It is Nixon himself who represents that dark, venal and incurably violent side of the American character that almost every country in the world has learned to fear and despise. Our Barbie-doll president, with his Barbie-doll wife and his boxful of Barbie-doll children is also America’s answer to the monstrous Mr. Hyde. He speaks for the Werewolf in us; the bully, the predatory shyster who turns into something unspeakable, full of claws and bleeding string warts, on nights when the moon comes too close….

At the stroke of midnight in Washington, a drooling red-eyed beast with the legs of a man and head of a giant hyena crawls out of its bedroom window in the South Wing of the White House and leaps 50 feet down to the lawn … pauses briefly to strangle the chow watchdog, then races off into the darkness…toward the Watergate, snarling with lust, loping through the alleys behind Pennsylvania Avenue and trying desperately to remember which one of those 400 iron balconies is the one outside Martha Mitchell’s apartment.

Ah…nightmares, nightmares. But I was only kidding. The President of the United States would never act that weird. At least not during football season. But how would the voters react if they knew the President of the United States was, according to a New York Times editorial on Oct. 12, presiding over “a complex, far-reaching and sinister operation on the part of White House aides and the Nixon campaign organization … involving sabotage, forgery, theft of confidential files, surveillance of Democratic candidates and their families and persistent efforts to lay the basis for possible blackmail and intimidation?”

2 thoughts on “let’s review: Hunter Thompson’s obituary for Richard Nixon

  1. What a pity Hunter won’t be with us to write George Deux’s obit. This was after all the man who said:
    I will do everything in my power short of roaming the streets with a meat hammer to keep George W. Bush from becoming president.

    But I’m sure that if we updated the names we could use this one.

    I just hope Thompson was wrong about the president reflecting his electorate.

  2. Nope. You should read what he wrote when McGovern lost…by the biggest landslide in history.

    I shall post that, should I ever run across it online. Goes something like, “This may be it. The day we just finally lay back and admit that we’re a nation of shallow, stupid, scared sheep.” And goes on for some distance from that. It is a thing of beauty and a joy forever.

    Wasn’t it Jefferson who said that America gets the goverment it deserves?

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