Friday, May 15, 2009

NYU's Historic Richard Nixon Connection

In his introduction to the 1974 book Big Brother and The Holding Company: The World Behind Watergate, Noam Chomsky asserted that “Richard Nixon is one of the major criminals of the 20th century, and the same is true of those who have designed and implemented the foreign policy of his administration;” and “it is plain that Nixon’s pleasant crew succeeded in stealing the 1972 election.”

In an essay, titled ‘Nixon and the Miami Connection”, which appeared in the same book, 1990s New York Times reporter Jeff Gerth also wrote that “from his smear campaigns in the late 1940s, to the secret slush fund that led to the Checkers speech in 1952, to the Hughes loan in 1960, to the $400,000 ITT scandal in 1972 to the Watergate break-in and the secret Republican war chest, Nixon’s ascendancy to power has been surrounded by the stigma of suspicion.”

Another essay in Big Brother and The Holding Company also described the now-deceased Nixon’s 1960s and 1970s connection to New York University’s board of trustees:

“Until 1963, Mudge, Stern, Baldwin & Todd was a stodgy old Wall Street law firm…One of its oldest clients was Warner-Lambert Pharmaceuticals, whose chairman, vitamin king Elmer Bobst, had a personal stake in finding a job for his old friend Richard Nixon…

“…Bobst…convinced the partners of Mudge, Stern, Baldwin & Todd that Nixon’s presence would bring in new clients…

“Nixon joined the firm in mid-1963 and on January 1, 1964, the name became Nixon, Mudge, Rose, Guthrie & Alexander…

“Salmon Brothers has a pragmatic and self-serving interest in New York University. They made a `gift’ of $3 million to an education and research center relating to financial organizations…Other Mudge, Rose clients have an interest in New York University. Former chairman of Irving Trust, George A. Murphy is a trustee. Elmer Bobst, of Warner-Lambert, is not only a trustee, but also gave $11 million to New York University’s newly dedicated Elmer H. Bobst Library…”

(Downtown 5/11/94)

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