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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Sept. 12, 1974)
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Since President For granted Nixon -his- l'free,
full and absolute pardon" Sunday, talk in
Wtshihgt'on'flas bfeerrf lying." " ' ' 1 "' " '
Nicknames have sprung up, like "Forgive-'em-hell
Jerrv." Bathroom orafitti reads: "Booked
today, overlooked tomorrow."
But the public must be fair. Somewhere
underneath all the gossip is a legitimate
Presidential reason for pardoning Nixon (I think) I
went to Washington myself today to find out.
Poolside, The White House 'Pardon me, Mr
"What? Pardon?" His eyes brightened. "Cer
tainly! Where do I sign?"
"No, no. I'm a reporter "
That's okay. I'll forgive anyone." He grinned.
"Yes, Mr. President. That's just what my
readersare wondering about."
"You want to know why I pardoned the former
President, I bet. Well, let's see. It's time we
forgive and forget the ugly passions of Watergate
...We need to work together now on more pressing
problems. ..The President suffered enough already
...But between you and me, it made me feel good
to do it.
"In fact, I felt so good and this is strictly off
the cuff I've just appointed a National Pardon
Commission to blue print an entire series of
pardons for my first term in office. I'm going to
make this country spotless! "
.... "This.is auitea.surprise.AVho do you have in
mind, Mr. Ford?"
"Oh, br.rlicnman. Dean, Aqnew, ITT you
name it. They're all on the list somewhere. Right
now I'm kind of tired of Watergate, so I may go
back ana pardon Li. William ualley nrsi lor me
My Lai massacre.
"And then I guess I'll grant the draft evaders
amnesty before they get all riled up. Uncondition
al, of course."
"What about Agnew?"
"I'm saving him for Oct. 10, in commemoration
of his resignation as Vice-President a year ago that
day. It's a surprise."
"That's all very noble, Mr. President, but what
about equal justice under the law?"
, "You're absulutely right. That's why in 1975
I'm going through all the files at the FBI and
pardoning everbody In one clean sweep.
"Then for the Bicentennial celebration in 1976 I
plan to posthumously pardon some of our great
Watergate forefathers: Bededict Arnold, Warren
B. Harding, the king of England. ..Think how
much their descendants have suffered all these
By that time 1 might feel so good I'll even
pardon my former press secretary, Jerald F.
terHorst, for quitting on me.
Suddenly the President started to cry. "What's
"Sorry, l-l just get all choked up when I think
about the former President. You know what he
sent me for pardoning him? A $50,000 gold plaque
inscribed with my favorite saying, 'A friend that's
freed a friend is a friend indeedd, to hang in the
ova! office. Kind of a shame, though."
Now now one will ever see that beautiful
watercolor portrait again. You know, the one of
George-Washinton chopping down the cherry
; U tits ;.
Perhaps they expect the nation to emit a rousing cry
Otherwise, why would the national wire services
release reports which read like a laboratory manual on
President Ford? it
Ford's latest escapade-an apparently newsworthy
one involved toasting his own muffins in the White
House kitchen. It seems the President exhibited
uncanny prowess in sticking two English muffin
halves probably Wonder Bread into a toaster, then
waiting for them to pop up. .
Photographers recorded the occasion. Reporters
cornered Mrs. Ford to obtain suitably trivial quotes.
The story made page one of a local daily newspaper.
Not only did the President toast his own muffins. He
also poured himself some orange juice, sliced a
cantaloupe and heated a pot of coffee. Due to the taxing
nature of these feats, the President performed them in
his shirt sleeves. (The article failed to mention why
Ford was not wearing the rest of his shirt.)
The headline accompanying the article touted Ford's
versatility. Perhaps our "versatile" President can tie
his own shoes as well.
If so, newspaper readers probably will see a photo of
his left food encased in a Hush Puppy (after all, he is an
unpretentious leader) on tomorrow's front page.
Ho num. j ,
Signs on the horizon
Once again, billboards threaten to obscure the few
open vistas from America's highways.
Although the 1965 Highway Beautification Act
banned billboards along major rural highways, this
year's House version of the Highway Construction Act
includes some amendments to the 1965 law that would
open up several loopholes.
The House amendments also would halt the
de-billboarding process, which has removed some
265,000 highway signs since it began in 1971.
The 1965 law prohibited signs within 660 feet of the
right of way. Advertisers responded by placing jumbo
signs just beyond that limit. Not to be outfoxed, the
Senate Public Works Committee recently counterea
with a bill extending the ban to the limits of legibility.
: The amended House version of the Highway
Construction Act, however, provides for control of signs
beyond the 660-foot limit only if they are "erected with
the purpose of their message being read' from the
main traveled way." ;
Advertisers easily could slip a billboard between the I
lines of this vague phrasing. Signs ostensibly.could be,
erected on secondary roads, yet placed so they would ;
be visible from nearby interstate routes.
The House bill also would permit six "directional" j
signs per mile. As the amendment is woraea,
"directional" is an umbrella term covering "rest stops,
, camping grounds, food, gas and automotive services,
lodging, natural wonders, scenic and historic attrac
tions." The amended version of the Highway Construction
Act awaits consideration by the full House Public
Works Committee. ;
Members of that committee should resist the
billboard industry's blandishments which can be as
smooth as the messages their signs carry and remove
the amendments before the bill moves any further. . ...
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ihursday, September 12, 1974
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