This is the surveillance state writ large, with large corporations and the government in close cooperation, and hallowed by a warrant from a secret court that was supposed to be the last line of defense against this sort of thing. (Even though the FISA court has been a rubber stamp for years, which was an argument back during the previous administration for why that administration should have gotten a warrant. Ah, thim was the days.) And because we are supposed to be a self-governing political commonwealth, we are complicit, too. All of the powers under which the NSA operated were approved, over and over again, by the Congress, the members of which we freely elect, and none of whom will ever win an election on issues like this because, all tricornered hats and the outrage of the Paul family aside, there is no electoral constituency for the Bill of Rights any more. All of the powers under which Verizon operated were approved, over and over again, by its customers, who now know what the company was doing, and who, I predict, will keep handing over the data. Given the dark, midnight nature of government secrecy, a lot of the infrastructure behind this current outrage was put in place in the daylight. The fault, dear Brutus…” —
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars but in ourselves, that we are underlings.
William Shakespear, Julius Caesar
In 1969 … Nixon strategist Kevin Phillips offered a blueprint for crushing the Democrats’ New Deal coalition by recruiting Southerners and Catholics to the G.O.P. …
Nixon’s advisers urged him to reconsider his position on abortion and family planning. … Observing that abortion was “a rising issue and a gut issue with Catholics,” Buchanan wrote, “If the President should publicly take his stand against abortion, as offensive to his own moral principles … then we can force Muskie [one of Nixon’s potential democratic challengers up for the nomination] to make the choice between his tens of millions of Catholic supporters and his liberal friends at the New York Times and the Washington Post.”
A week later, in a statement to the Department of Defense, Nixon borrowed the language of the Catholic Church to speak of his “personal belief in the sanctity of human life—including the life of the yet unborn.”…
Abortion wasn’t a partisan issue until Republicans made it one. In June of 1972, a Gallup poll reported that sixty-eight per cent of Republicans and fifty-nine per cent of Democrats agreed that “the decision to have an abortion should be made solely by a woman and her physician.” Fifty-six per cent of Catholics thought so, too.” —
“The Politics of Planned Parenthood and Women’s Rights;” The New Yorker
Literally all of the ~~moral~~ bullshit the GOP puts out about abortion has its origins in a Nixon campaign strategy designed to get him to run against a weak candidate: McGovern. Nixon wanted to run against him, rather than Muskie, so he came up with some moral crap about abortion to destabilize Muskie’s support base, which ensured that McGovern received the nomination and ran against Nixon.
He didn’t even really believe in what he was saying. And he politicized it. And forty years later, look at the mess we have now.