The Nixon administration marked the end of America's long period of post-World War II prosperity and the onset of a period of high inflation and unemployment--"stagflation." With unemployment unusually low, but inflation was rising, Nixon adopted a policy of monetary restraint to cool what his advisers saw as an overheating economy.
Watergate was so much more than a single crime and cover-up that it is impossible to summarize the tangle of abuses of presidential power that today are grouped under the name of the hotel where the Democratic National Committee had its offices. The arrest of five men in those offices on June 17, 1972, was the first step toward unearthing a host of administration misdeeds. It was to hide those other crimes that Nixon and his men launched the cover-up, the investigation of which helped to unravel that string of illegal conduct.
In September 1972, the White House Special Files Unit was created within the White House complex to provide a secure storage location for administratively and politically sensitive material, personal material, and material with the President's handwriting. Sensitive materials created prior to 1972 were removed from selected White House Central Files: Subject Files and from selected White House Central Files: Staff Member and Office Files, and transferred to the Special Files. Any potentially sensitive materials created after 1972 were placed directly into the Special Files.
Papers of the Nixon Administration, 1969-1974, The White House Special Files consists of documents of an administratively sensitive nature, arranged according to subject matter. These documents provide an in-depth look into the machinations of the President, his closest advisors, and the administration. The records will support the behind-the-scenes historical inquiry into an administration that may well be the most significant one since World War II and one of the most important in the 20th century.
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