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12 .Gofesbu/ftJjjsgj^r*Mall,J^Jesbjtffl # .,! 1,1. . Monday, June 11,)973 Case: By NORMAN KEMPSTER I WASHINGTON (Wl) - If a y nation can team from its mistakes, the Watergate scandal may yet prove to be a blessing. in Washington Window The tangled web which has virtually immobilized the government also is liaising some serioua questions about a set of national assumptions that should have been challenged years ago. Heading the list of matters overripe for debate is the belief, fostered by Democratic and Republican, administrations alike, ithat the President knows best because he is best informed. President Nixon says he knew nothing of burglaries committed in his name by both his political campaign committee and the secret White House intelligence (force called "plumbers." Presidents Misled Taking the President at his word, that indicates he knew less of the Wafcengate bugging and its subsequent cover-up than newspaper readers. Looking further back, it seems clear today that Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson sometimes acted on the basis of faulty information in pursuing and enlarging the war in Vietnam. If Presidents can be misled by the information they receive from trusted subordinates, why should the general public be willing to put aside its own common sense in the assumption that the President must be much better informed? Which raises a second point —the frequent use of the "secret" stamp to keep information from the public. Nixon staunchly defends government secrecy. He recently told the nation's returned prisoners of war that without secret diplomacy, "you men would still be in Hanoi." Most Important Question The President reasoned that North Vietnam would not have negotiated the Vietnam cease fire if it had not believed its contacts with Henry A. Kissinger would be kept confidential. Yet there were leaks all through the years of secret negotiations... includinv Nixon's own televised speech Jan. 25, 1972, in which he made public details of the previously secret talks in what he described as an effort to get the negotiations off dead center. There certainly are arguments yet to be heard on both sides of the secrecy question. Perhaps the most important question which Watergate ' injects into the national debate is: Can a democracy be defended by undemocratic and illegal means? In his televised speech on Wateffate April 30, Nixon said, "the lesson Is clear; America, in its political campaigns, must not again fall into the trap of letting the end, however great that end is, justify the means." But in a 4,000-word written statement May 22, Nixon said that in the name of national security he authorized tapping of some government employes' and newsmen's telephones and approved a plan, which he said was never Implemented, to permit burglary of suspected security risks. . M Senate Republican leader Hugh Scott said, It is now time to decide if faufgtary,' electronic eavesdropping, opening of prl vate mail and illegal spying have any place at all in a free society. The answer may be yes, but it is time to seriously consider the question. INSURANCE. BONDS Jack Fischer • Jim Lillie McGrew & McGrew Agency, Inc. An Agency That Service Built 35 S. Prairie St. - Golesburg - Phone 342-4153 Crisis Cure: Consign Matter To Presidental Commission By DICK WEST WASHINGTON (U P I) There is near unanimity among capital pundits that the White House could have chosen a better method of' dealing with the Watergate crisis. The Lighter Side But very few columnists, commentators and syndicated second-guessers have addressed themselves to the question of how the matter could best have been handled. E-Oil SPECIAL OFFER 1 WEEK ONLY 10,000-1.U. of Vitamin E in a base of Organic Wheat Germ Oil. 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Well, actually Rees wasn't] answering that particular question. But his comment was I nonetheless applicable when he said: Subtlest Way to Die "The subtlest way for an idea to die a premature death is for it to be studied by a presidential study commission." At this very moment, you may be sure, a half dozen former White House aides are kicking themselves around the block because they didn't think of that. The significance of their oversight can be appreciated when we review what did ensue after that fateful night last spring when the Watergate buggers were caught in the act. Upon hearing the news, President Nixon's assistants apparently panicked, lost their heads and announced that both the FBI and the White House were investigating the break-in. What they should have done, of course, was announce that a presidential commission would be appointed to study the incident. Had that course been followed, those selfsame aides would still be on the job and the President would have been spared the tribulations that have since deluged him. The Traditional Way As Rees pointed out, Washington "is layered with presidential study commissions." It's the traditional way of defusing explosive issues. Confronted with a problem he doesn't know what to do about, a President vigorously appoints a commission to study it. This type of leadership is known as "dynamic temporization." The advantage of diverting a controversy to a commission is See 'Crisis'(Continued From Page 15) Notice Bowman Shoe Store in downtown Galesburg was closed today and will be closed again tomorrow. Preparations are now being made for the largest sale event in Bowman's history. Watch tomorrow's paper for complete details. Sale starts 7 a.m. Wednesday. Winchester, separates the men...from the You're a big boy now. And when your taste grows up, your smoke should, too. 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