Audio Interview: Monica Crowley (With Transcript)
MR. DRISCOLL: Well, closer to home, what are your thoughts on Operation Fast and Furious and how that scandal is being covered, and in some cases -- many cases, not covered by the --
MS. CROWLEY: Not covered, yeah. Well, you guys are doing a great job covering it. There are other conservative Web sites that are doing the same thing. Fox News has been covering it.
The philosophy of the Obama administration is we will do what we want, Constitution be damned. And we know that nobody's really going to cover the bad stuff, because they're all out to protect us. They're with us ideologically. They're never going to allow the first black president to get into any real trouble. They will protect us. So therefore, we will get away with everything.
And they have. And like I said, with a few exceptions of certain news outlets that have covered Fast and Furious, it really hasn't gotten covered. And they believe that when the bad stuff happens, whether it's Fast and Furious or Benghazi or any of the range of unconstitutional maneuvers this president has done, that they can just wait it out, because it doesn't get covered. So they wait it out, they stonewall, they don't give any explanations. They continue to smile, and the story blows over.
When people talk about Watergate -- and my old boss, President Nixon obviously resigned in the wake of Watergate. Watergate did not have a body count. Fast and Furious has two dead Americans, Jaime Zapata, obviously, and Brian Terry. Benghazi has four dead Americans including the personal representative of the president, the U.S. ambassador.
So these scandals under Barack Obama actually have an American body count. Watergate, nobody died. So you tell me which one is the more serious. They have covered up these scandals. They go as high as Eric Holder, possibly the President of the United States, and still, no sense of curiosity from the mainstream media, Ed. It's astonishing. And they ought to be ashamed.
MR. DRISCOLL: Monica I wanted to ask you a question that isn’t entirely germane to What the (Bleep) Just Happened...Again, but it’s one that I’d be curious to get your take on. You began your career as a research assistant for Richard Nixon on his last two books. There’s a bit of a reappraisal of Nixon from the left; including both New York Timesmen Paul Krugman and Tom Wicker, and former movie critic turned wannabe pundit and angry Twitter user Roger Ebert. Wicker and Krugman see Nixon as the last of the New Deal-Great Society-era liberals. What’s your take on Richard Nixon’s politics, and where they would fit on the ideological spectrum today?
MS. CROWLEY: It's a fascinating turnabout to watch people like Tom Wicker and others who pounded Nixon into the ground when he was in the presidency, and now, all of a sudden they see him as some great progressive savior.
It is amazing to me to watch. When I worked with President Nixon during the early 1990s, we had long conversations about ideology, conservatism, Republicanism. And Nixon was -- I would say he was a progressive Republican. He did things like take us off the gold standard, wage and price controls, started the Environmental Protection Agency, expanded the food stamp program, things that, as a conservative, I was up in arms about. And I became a conservative because when I was coming of age, Ronald Reagan was president. And everything Reagan was saying in terms of lowering taxes and cutting government and having a muscular national security policy just instinctively struck me as correct.
So I became a conservative. And by the time I got to President Nixon, he and I would have these long conversations. And we would get into it sometimes. We'd have real ideological arguments.
I will say this. Nixon became far more conservative in his later years than he was as president. And I like to think that was some of my doing and my influence, although, who knows?
But he did become far more conservative, especially on economic matters. He was always a hawk when it came to defense and our national security strategy. But in terms of economics, you know, he said to me -- one day we were talking about the Environmental Protection Agency. And he said, Monica, once you start a government bureaucracy, it runs wild. We started it with a noble purpose of clean air and water. That's it. End then of course the bureaucracy takes the reins and goes out of control and then takes on a life of its own and you end up not being able to control it. Even the president can't control it.
And as far as food stamps goes, he said, you know, once you give away a government program you can never take it back. And so he had a lot of regrets -- Watergate aside, obviously -- but he had a lot of regrets about a lot of his economic policies. And if he had to do it again, I think he would have governed far more conservatively than he did.