40 years later: What would Watergate look like in today’s social media, celebrity-obsessed world?

Saturday marked the 40th anniversary of President Richard Nixon’s resignation in the aftermath of the Watergate scandal. During a discussion on NBC’s This Week on Sunday, former CBS News reporter Sharyl Attkisson took a very interesting approach to the conversation. Much to the surprise of her fellow panelists, Attkisson explained why we have “gone backwards” since the days of Woodward and Bernstein.

Watch the analysis courtesy of The Daily Caller:

“I think that we’ve gone backwards since that time when we really felt empowered as journalists,” Attkisson said matter-of-factly.

So how would a Nixon-type scandal unfold in today’s digital and social media-driven world? Attkisson offers a pretty good idea:

“Nixon would basically refuse to turn over tapes to Congress. His aides would refuse to testify to Congress, or take the Fifth, or lie to Congress with a fair amount of impunity. Woodward and Bernstein would be controversialized on social media by special and political interests who use Facebook accounts And then, at the end, Nixon would go on a popular late night comedy show, during which time he would humorously refer to his attackers as people who were political witch hunters who believe in Area 51-type conspiracies.”

“Wow,” Pat said on radio this morning. “Is that not exactly what would happen, if he had his media on his side like [President Obama] does?”

  • poundsand

    We owe Nixon a huge apology. He lied once, got caught and had the good sense to resign and spare the country the impeachment process. Obama has lied multiple times on many issues – Benghazi and the “video,” obamascam and how great it was going to be for the country, etc. Mix in NSA spying and IRS harassing conservative groups for political purposes and he makes Nixon look like a choir boy, period. All Obama’s likes have been recorded on national tv, but where’s the outrage? When is enough going to be enough and demand accountability???

    • Mary Miedaner Bryant

      That was during a time in history when leadership understood the word: Honor. They wanted to do what was best for the country not for their party or their personal legacy. The concept of honor is dead.

      hon·or [ ónnər ] personal integrity: strong moral character or strength, and adherence to ethical principles
      respect: great respect and admiration
      dignity: personal dignity that sometimes leads to recognition and glory http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEOGJJ7UKFM

  • landofaahs

    Many Republicans were angry with Nixon’s price control’s, abandonment of the Gold Standard and the simple pulling out of Vietnam amongst other things. It was easy for them to hold him to account for his behavior. But the democrats will never do that especially with the first – in the White House.

  • Yo Mamma

    At least he didn’t use a cigar on his intern.

    • landofaahs

      Maybe he was doing something with someone else’s love cigar.

  • http://truthofg.blogspot.com/ Connor Kenway

    I bet this is how it would go down today. The media would blame Bush even when he is not our leader and call all questions about it racist.

  • R.J. Brownlee

    Nixon did nothing compared to the last three Democrat Presidents. Carter was an idiot. Didn’t know what or who to talk to about the political issues of the time. Clinton was a liar, a cheat and committed treason on more than one occasion. Giving China the guidance control systems for ICBMs, that was a big one. And then theres obama, if his lips are moving he’s telling a lie. Gave hundreds of millions to the muslim brotherhood, certified terrorist against the US. By funding the terrorist that is treason. Passing laws without congress is against the law. And just about everything he has done while in office is against the law. Need I say more?

  • http://suzeraining.wordpress.com/ suz

    martha raddatz’ smooth-over of sharyl’s profundity is nauseating.