Back when Walt Kelly was giving us daily laughs with the antics of Pogo and his friends. Nixon, Agnew, and J. Edgar Hoover were holding forth on the political scene. Kelly, always one to quickly notice a political soft spot, produced several Pogo episodes featuring three dogs whose faces were undeniably Nixon, Agnew, and Hoover. In the strip, they were constantly plotting on how to control the thinking of ordinary unsuspecting people in everyday life. Hoover hit on the idea of developing a strain of small spiders that looked like asterisks in a book and which could be trained to take up any position in the book to which they were assigned. It was Hoover's contention that if you controlled the positions of the asterisks in a book, you controlled its meaning. And he produced several examples that were convincing indeed.

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