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The Problem with "Enemies Lists" is that Enemies are often in the eye of the beholder.

What constitutes "an Enemy" can change over time, over differing politics, and over Administrations.

Take Republican President Nixon for example. He had an "Enemies List" that grew from spite, and what seems to be his own desperate sense of losing the rhetorical battle, with the American people.

The People who made his list -- would hardly qualify as "enemies" by today's 'clear cut' definitions of the label.  Or at least one would hope.

Nixon's Enemies List --

Nixon’s Enemies List is the informal name of what started as a list of President of the United States Richard Nixon’s major political opponents compiled by Charles Colson, written by George T. Bell[1] (assistant to Colson, special counsel to the White House), and sent in memorandum form to John Dean on September 9, 1971. The list was part of a campaign officially known as “Opponents List” and “Political Enemies Project.” The list became public knowledge when Dean mentioned during hearings with the Senate Watergate Committee that a list existed containing those whom the president did not like. Journalist Daniel Schorr, who happened to be on the list, managed to obtain copies of it later that day.[2]

The official purpose, as described by the White House Counsel's Office, was to "screw" Nixon's political enemies, by means of tax audits from the Internal Revenue Service, and by manipulating "grant availability, federal contracts, litigation, prosecution, etc."[3] In a memorandum from John Dean to Lawrence Higby (August 16, 1971), Dean explained the purpose of the list:

    “This memorandum addresses the matter of how we can maximize the fact of our incumbency in dealing with persons known to be active in their opposition to our Administration; stated a bit more bluntly -- how we can use the available federal machinery to screw our political enemies.[3]”
The IRS commissioner, Donald C. Alexander, refused to launch audits of the people on the list.[4]

Nixon's Enemies List

    1. Arnold Picker
    2. Alexander Barkan
    3. Edwin Guthman
    4. Maxwell Dane
    5. Charles Dyson
    6. Howard Stein
    7. Allard Lowenstein
    8. Morton Halperin
    9. Leonard Woodcock
    10. Sterling Munro, Jr.
    11. Bernard T. Feld
    12. Sidney Davidoff
    13. John Conyers
    14. Samuel M. Lambert
    15. Stewart Rawlings Mott
    16. Ron Dellums
    17. Daniel Schorr
    18. S. Harrison Dogole
    19. Paul Newman
    20. Mary McGrory

But what did these folks Americans do anyways -- to warrant the wrath of America's chief executive?

To have the "use of available federal machinery" brought to bear, against their own well-being?

Well, make the jump and we'll see all their "crimes and misdemeanors" -- or so then-President had perceived ...

By following the links in the previous Wiki Page, I compiled a summary of the "preceived crimes against Nixon" that put them on The List:

Nixon's Enemies List -- annotated

    1. Arnold Picker -- a United States film industry executive, mayor of Golden Beach, Florida

    2. Alexander Barkan -- head of the AFL-CIO's Committee on Political Education

    3. Edwin Guthman -- Attorney General Robert Kennedy's press secretary

    4. Maxwell Dane -- produced the 1964 television commercial Daisy in support of Lyndon Johnson

    5. Charles Dyson -- an American businessman and philanthropist

    6. Howard Stein -- one of the fathers of the mutual fund industry; had progressive politics

    7. Allard Lowenstein -- liberal Democratic politician, congressman from the 5th District in Nassau County, NY

    8. Morton Halperin -- an American expert on foreign policy and civil liberties. Called for a halt to bombing Vietnam

    9. Leonard Woodcock -- President of the United Auto Workers; a champion of both minority and women's rights

    10. Sterling Munro, Jr. -- an aide of former Washington Senator Henry M. Jackson

    11. Bernard T. Feld -- President of the Albert Einstein Peace Foundation, editor of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, and President of the American Pugwash Committee

    12. Sidney Davidoff  -- Davidoff re-lowered the American flag to half-mast in honor of the 4 demonstrators killed at the Kent State shootings after opponents had raised it in defiance

    13. John Conyers -- founding member of the Congressional Black Caucus; Conyers was critical of Richard Nixon during his tenure

    14. Samuel M. Lambert -- executive secretary of the National Education Association; opposed federal funding for parochial schools

    15. Stewart Rawlings Mott -- a philanthropist who support of liberal causes: abortion reform, birth control, sex research, feminism, arms control, gay rights, civil liberties, governmental reform

    16. Ron Dellums -- the first African American elected to Congress from Northern California and the first openly Socialist successful non-incumbent Congressional candidate since World War II

    17. Daniel Schorr -- Schorr provoked intense controversy in 1976 when he received and made public the contents of the secret Pike Committee report on illegal CIA and FBI activities.[2] Called to testify before Congress, he refused to identify his source on First Amendment grounds, risking imprisonment.

    18. S. Harrison Dogole -- president of Globe Security Systems; a heavy contributor to the Hubert Humphrey campaign, and because of fears that he would use his company to investigate Richard M. Nixon, he was placed on Nixon's Enemies List.

    19. Paul Newman -- For his support of Eugene McCarthy in 1968 (and effective use of television commercials in California) and his opposition to the War in Vietnam, Newman was placed nineteenth on Richard Nixon's enemies list

    20. Mary McGrory -- a liberal American journalist and columnist. She was a fierce opponent of the Vietnam War and was on Richard Nixon's enemies list for writing "daily hate Nixon articles"

And in one of the more surreal news events, surrounding The List ...

Daniel Schorr: on finding out he was on Nixon's "enemies list"

(as he was reporting on The List for the first time)

link to video

Good thing Nixon didn't have all the "available federal NSA machinery" of today, eh?

Otherwise the country may have taken a much different path, than the one we find ourselves on today ...

Chilling thought, isn't it?   What might have been ... What might yet be, someday ... if the "Labelers" and "Listers" are left to their devices, behind their still impenetrable veil.

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