September 10, 2004

Yet Again

I'm a little loopy from bouncing back and forth between websites, reading all I can about memos and typewriters. There may or may not (depending on who you listen to) be a typewriter that can do the things done in the memo, but either way, I still have to wonder if any of those more expensive models would have been used here. I still say they're phony, mostly for the superscript issue***, but for other reasons as well.

However, in all the comments/posts I read, nobody commented on one thing that I found strange. It seems clear that we are supposed to infer that the memo dated 18 August 1973 was written by Killian to protect himself (SUBJECT: CYA= cover your ass). I'm just wondering how on Earth he thought this was going to "cover his ass." This reads more like somebody wanted to make it look like Killian was writing down "secret" info for his own records/safety. But think about it. There's nothing here that's going to cover his ass. The assumption is that he fears somewhere down the line he'll be held responsible for "sugar coating" Bush's OETR, and that this memo was supposed to protect him in that case. Notice there are no specifics. "Staudt has obviously pressured Hodges more about Bush." Huh? obvious because? Pressured how? No ranks? The text here is so general that should Killian have been accused of "sugar coating" the report, this would likely have proved...nothing. If it was really meant to CYA, wouldn't it have read more like a report? Details, specific times? Under #2, it reads: "Harris took the call from Grp today. I'll backdate but won't rate. Harris agrees." Harris agrees? Doesn't Harris want to cover HIS ass? Why not have him sign the paper? Frankly, as a protective device, you might as well wear this memo as a bulletproof vest--It'll protect you just as much. There's a few names--easy enough to look them up. There's not enough detail there to make it worth your while to investigate the account (which, again, goes against the idea of keeping a record to cover one's ass). And why even write this in memo form, complete with subject, in the first place? Why not just simply write it down? Why not tell someone? Why not make some kind of pact with Harris, who apparently feels the same way--"you cover me, and I'll cover you"? I'm just not buying it.

Okay, that's it. At least until I think of something else.

***yes, I know if you had the right machine, you could change the type ball, but c'mon--is someone really going to take the time to do that for two letters in the middle of an unofficial memo, especially when they didn't take the time to do it in official ones?

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