If politics has taught us anything in the past grueling year, it's that it involves a lot more posturing than actual policy. Without a bunch of charisma and some great speeches, a politician could be running on a platform of free ponies and healthcare and still not get elected. But even the greatest political figures can't bat a thousand. Fortunately for us, even their worst-reviewed speeches and weirdest moments have been preserved for posterity. For example ...
6Nixon's "I Am Not A Crook" Speech Was Given At Disney World
Of all the things you could say about President Richard Nixon, the most accurate is probably that he was not a very fun person. Disney World, on the other hand, is the absolute pinnacle of fun, especially if you're under the age of nine or over the age of 20 and weird. So how did Nixon end up making one of the most important political speeches in modern history near the Mad Tea Party ride?
In 1973, the Watergate scandal was fully blowing up, and everyone wanted Nixon's head on a pike for authorizing espionage on the Democratic Party. (We know that sounds strange, but there used to a time when we held bad presidents accountable for their misdeeds.) Nixon knew he needed to calm the press down in order to keep his job, and his best chance of doing so was to attend the Associated Press Managing Editors annual national conference and have a nice and friendly chat -- two adjectives that have never been used to describe Nixon. There was only one downside: For some reason, the dignified and prestigious conference was being held at Disney's Contemporary Resort in Florida. It seems even the leaders of the mainstream media sometimes want to blow off steam by having their pictures taken with Goofy.
There, in a Mickey Mouse conference hall only a brief stroll away from the Magic Kingdom, Nixon uttered the most famous and damning line of his political career: "I am not a crook."
But for some reason, history tends to leave out the part where he did it surrounded not only by journalists who were pissed that they had to throw on a suit in the Florida humidity, but also their kids, who were pissed that Mom and Dad had to watch the nation fall apart instead of taking them to the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. That's pretty surreal, even by Disney standards.