Books September 2021
Not a new Nixon
A review of King Richard by Michael Dobbs.
Michael Dobbs’s King Richard is a superficial book that contributes nothing new to the immense Watergate literature, 95 percent of which is self-serving claptrap. As it is a chronology through the ten months that followed the Watergate intrusion, it has the drama inherent to such a train of events, no matter how familiar the reader already is with them. At no place does the author depart from the accepted and zealously propagated liberal view that Richard Nixon had his moments but was ultimately a neurotic crook. Such a view is only to be expected from a former Washington Post fact-checker. Dobbs makes the obligatory reference to Dr. Arnold Hutschnecker, who advised Nixon in the 1950s about coping with anxiety and sleeplessness, to drop the hint that Nixon was not altogether sane. (I had occasion in 1992 to ask Nixon about one of his early...
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