Open Road Integrated Media has re-issued the best book on Watergate,
Blind Ambition by John Dean.
Dean was the smartest of the Nixon gang. As counsel to the President, he coordinated the cover up, investigated the burglary, protected the President, set up the fall guys and arranged the payment of hush money.
As the flood gates of the scandal were about to burst, Dean was the first to defect to the prosecutors, tell all, and wind up with a jail sentence of only four months.
Conspirators who committed lesser crimes than Dean, did far more time.
John Dean, then
Dean’s memoire is self-serving, but the book’s value is the flesh and blood portrayals of the principals—Nixon, Haldeman, Ehrlichman, Ziegler, Magruder, Mitchell, Chapin, Kalmbach. Thanks to Dean, the reader can visualize the principals and imagine being in their presence.
Of particular entertainment is Dean’s lifestyle. Prep school graduate, playboy, big spender, and enormous drinker. One could envy Dean, but for his public disgrace and time served.
After being released from jail, Dean sprung back. Unable to practice law, he entered investment banking. At age 60, he began writing books. His interviews and book lectures appear on You Tube. Now 78, the Dean of the You Tube interviews is unrepentant. He jokes about his role in Watergate.
John Dean, now
Whatever one’s personal assessment of Dean, Blind Ambition is a valuable resource for Watergate fans.