Friday, December 09, 2016

"From Zero to Nixon in No Time Flat"

Stephen Colbert made that joke a few weeks ago and it’s only getting worse. (Was it ever funny?)

Nixon, for those of you not born in the early seventies, was infamous for his Enemies List which contained quite a few famous names, Paul Newman, Daniel Schorr and Congressman John Conyers among them. Who knew making salad dressing was so subversive.

Mother Jones is reporting that the incoming Trump administration is already creating a list of scientists to purge from the government. Their crime? Working with President Obama to slow and stop climate change.

New York Magazine is reporting that Trump has also been busy purging environmentalists from the Republican Party.

Bill Moyers reports that the Trump administration has already created an enemies list. What's the word I'm looking for? Yes: Nixonian.

Heather Cox Richardson, who wrote the article posted at Bill Moyers' website, is a well-respected Boston historian. Her special areas of study include Native Americans and the periods of American history from the Civil War through Reconstruction. We might assume that the Trump administration wants to scrub those histories clean to make sure no one is embarrassed by knowing about slavery or Jim Crow or the theft of a continent from the native tribes.

Who else might wind up on the “watch list”? Professors who do serious science instead of oil company “science”. Professors of economics who don’t worship unregulated capitalism. Labor historians. Also the millions of people who have spoken out about Donald J. Trump’s behavior and bigotry. It’ll be a very long list. We should make sure we are all on it.

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