Something smells fishy to the Washington Times in the wake of yesterday's shocking announcement by the foreign policy think tank Richard Nixon proudly launched in 1994 that it has decided it can better make its way without his name on the door.
It's one thing to say that the Nixon Center always planned to be independent of the Nixon foundation one day. I know it did, because I helped devise the plan. We wanted to make sure that the Center would be protected if someone ever seized control of the foundation who didn't understand or support the Center's mission or who had a vendetta against its staff or volunteers.
But it was never Nixon's or anyone else's plan to jettison his name in favor of something as blandly generic as "Center for the National Interest." For reasons perhaps not yet disclosed, the Center Formerly Known As Nixon has just broken one of its ex-namesake's cardinal political rules: It's always better to be controversial than to be dull.