Sign up for our free newsletter
Free D.C. news, delivered to your inbox daily.
For a brief moment, Watergate gave the press unprecedented powerironically, the power to bring down a seething press-hater. But Tricky Dick is having the last laugh from the grave. Watergate granted the press fantastic influence and then ruined it: After Watergate, cynicism flowered and “gotcha” journalism flourished in an age when the television displaced the morning paper. Now newspapering is a dying craft that no one cares much about, and will soon consist of a handful of giants that pander to their suburban readers. Watergate’s political repercussions were also short-lived: We currently have the most Nixonlike president since, well, Nixon, and find that a river of shady money flowed through the last campaign. So perhaps it’s appropriate to discuss Watergate in a museum, since it’s no more relevant than a pile of fossils, with a host of big-name dinosaurs (Ben Bradlee, Haynes Johnson, Carl Bernstein, etc.): The two-days of panel discussions, “Watergate: 25 Years Later,” run from 10:30 a.m.-8:45 p.m. Wednesday and 10:30 a.m.-2:15 p.m. Thursday at the Newseum, 1101 Wilson Blvd., Arlington. FREE. (703) 284-3544. (John Cloud)