Now that Art Linkletter is back in the news as spokesperson for USANext, it gives us the oppotunity to laugh at his exchanges with Nixon again.
Hesiod over at The American Street has all the fun, including this:
Linkletter: “Another big difference between marijuana and alcohol is that when people smoke marijuana, they smoke it to get high. In every case, when most people drink, they drink to be sociable. You don’t see people –”
Nixon: “That’s right, that’s right.”
Linkletter: “They sit down with a marijuana cigarette to get high –”
Nixon: “A person does not drink to get drunk.”
Linkletter: “That’s right.”
Nixon: “A person drinks to have fun.”
Linkletter: “I’d say smoke marijuana, you smoke marijuana to get high.”
Nixon: “Smoke marijuana, er, uh, you want to get a charge of some sort, and float, and this, that and the other thing.”
Yup. Richard Nixon was an alcoholic.
But, even Richard Nixon knew that Art Linkletter was pretty much an out of touch old fogey. Later on, he famously met with Elvis an enlisted him as an “anti-drug” crusader (what a bizarre moment that was). As Tricky Dick said to Bob Haldeman at the time:“This is just what I’ve been looking for. Elvis Presley, a rock ‘n’ roll hero to millions, wants to help with our anti-drug crusade. This will go a lot farther with the kids than Art Linkletter.”
There’s more, including Linkletter’s analysis of various marijuana grades.
Update: A commenter reminds me that Linkletter’s daughter had supposedly died in an “LSD-related” incident. There’s several problems with that:
- The story is false. Diane Linkletter committed suicide and there were no drugs in her system. It appears that the Linkletter family preferred to “encourage” the LSD story than face the reasons for suicide.
- Even if it was true, it would have been completely irrelevant to the ratcheting up of the war on marijuana caused in part because Linkletter and Nixon were idiots.
- I have absolutely no sympathy for people in power who experience a tragedy and then procede to use that power to destroy the lives of countless others through ill-advised and counter-productive laws.
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