TIME Music

Kings of Leon Drummer Hurt in Bus Accident

The group had to postpone a show on Sunday night after Nathan Followill sustained broken ribs in a tour bus accident

Kings of Leon postponed their show on Sunday night following a bus accident that injured drummer Nathan Followill.

The group was scheduled to play a show in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., when its tour bus was involved in a minor accident that left Followill with broken ribs. The band announced the accident on Facebook, writing:

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT: Due to an accident on their tour bus, Kings of Leon will unfortunately have to postpone tonight’s show in Saratoga Springs, NY. The band was en route to their hotel after their show in Boston when a pedestrian jumped in front of their tour bus, causing the bus to stop short, injuring Nathan Followill.

Nathan is being treated for broken ribs, but is doing well. The band will postpone the show that was planned for TONIGHT, August 10th, until further notice. Refunds for ticket holders will be available at point of purchase.

Followill thanked the fans wishing him well on Twitter:

There’s no word when the canceled gig will be rescheduled for and whether the band will be postponing any further appearances. Kings of Leon are due to play The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon on Tuesday night.

TIME celebrities

The Rock’s Mother Survived a Car Crash and He Posted Pictures of It

Says they were hit "head on by a drunk driver"

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson posted an image of the car wreck that nearly killed his mother and cousin to Instagram on Sunday. The wrestler-turned-actor also tweeted about the incident, saying his family had been hit “head on by a drunk driver.”

The picture, above, included the caption, “My mom & cousin @linafanene were struck head on by a drunk driver this week – they lived. First reaction is to find the person who did this and do unrelenting harm to them. But then you realize the most important thing is my family lived thru this and we can hug each other that much tighter these days. Hug your own family tighter today and be grateful you can tell them you love them.”

It wasn’t immediately clear whether Johnson’s cousin, WWE NXT Diva Lina Fanene, or his mother, Ata Johnson, sustained any injuries in the accident.

TIME celebrities

Teen Choice Awards Bring Surfboards to Shailene Woodley

Teen Choice Awards 2014 - Show
Actress Shailene Woodley, winner of Best Actress: Action onstage during FOX's 2014 Teen Choice Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on August 10, 2014 in Los Angeles. Kevin Winter—Getty Images

The Fault in Our Stars cast members were among the night's biggest winners

The 2014 Teen Choice Awards brought fan-driven accolades to the stars teens couldn’t get enough of this year, including the cast of the hit film The Fault in Our Stars.

Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort took home several surfboards at the fun-filled show Sunday, in categories like “Choice Lip-Lock” and “Choice Movie: Drama.” The two stars were also the top picks for Breakout Movie Star (Elgort) and Choice Movie Actress: Adventure (Woodley).

In Woodley’s Choice Actress acceptance speech, according to US Weekly, the actress who once told TIME she doesn’t consider herself a feminist said she felt “pretty honored to be accepting this award on behalf of women.” Adding, “the truest form of bravery and of courage is to be ourselves.”

Some 165 million votes were cast for the 16th annual awards show where teens and the stars they lust over typically take home the most awards. Another choice moment from the show: Donald Sutherland, voted Choice Villain for his role in the Hunger Games series, had a special treat for the crowd of team from the film’s dystopian nation.

“I have brought you souvenirs from Panem. They’re berries,” Sutherland said, tossing berries like the lethal one’s featured in the Hunger Games into the crowd. “I wouldn’t eat them if I were you.”

TIME Television

RECAP: True Blood Watch: Almost Home


Eric finally comes for the "Princess of Peace"

True Blood is winding to a close, and with just three weeks to go the show is letting the healing commence. But just because the show is seemingly adopting some midlevel hospital’s focus-grouped tag line of “let the healing begin” doesn’t mean there won’t be gory deaths, eyebrow-raising shocks, looming infidelity and a room filled with medieval torture devices, including a “breast ripper.” This is still True Blood after all.

Here’s what happened on True Blood:

When we last saw Sarah Newlin, she was cornered, with Eric and Pam and the Yakanomo Corp. CEO circling. To kick off the episode, like a kid misunderstanding the point of hide and seek, she walks out of the building and offers herself up and crowns herself “the Princess of Peace.” Not one to tolerate an overinflated sense of self, Eric swoops in to kill her, but settled on biting her instead. Funny thing, though, that bite cured him from Hep V.

After Bill and Sookie reconnected, horizontally, on the carpet, Bill struck up some postcoital conversation: “A quiet Sookie is a thinking Sookie. Penny for your thoughts?” And instead of wrapping the sheet around her and stomping out of the room in the universal sign of regretting your choice of bedroom partner, Sookie just smiled, and they talked about the long sordid history of their relationship and how Sophie-Anne wanted to turn Sookie into a breeding machine. Bill is sorry that he was such a fool, and to crib a line from Battlestar Galactica: So say we all, Bill, so say we all.

Meanwhile, Lafayette and Lettie Mae are still digging up some nice family’s front lawn in the hopes of finding Tara and/or resolution. James shows up just in time for Lettie Mae to persuade her husband, the good reverend, to come with her on a trip to whatever nether plane of existence is accessible by chugging some vampire’s blood. After Lettie Mae gives her doe-eyed “Don’t you trust me?” speech, the reverend sucks on James’ wrist and follows her into a flashback of Tara’s childhood birthday party with Tara pulling a Ghost of Christmas Past on the trio through the memory. Tara’s dad crashes the festivities and an awful scene of domestic unrest unfurls under the watchful eyes of the uninvited guests. As her father corners her mother, child Tara goes and finds her father’s handgun. She points it at his head, but then thinks better of it. She watches as her father abandons the family and goes to bury the gun in the front yard. The reverend uncovers it, and full-grown Tara appears to tell her mother that she should have pulled the trigger. Her mother reminds her that she was just a kid and was supposed to protect her. They ask each other for forgiveness, and then Tara goes into the light in her flowy white dress to the Great Toga Party in the sky, leaving her mother, Lafayette and the reverend to pick up the pieces.

Hoyt Fortenberry and his girlfriend (or is it fiancée?) Bridget are going through his dearly departed mother’s possessions while Deputy Jason supervises the proceedings (with a beer). While Hoyt breaks the news that he never, ever, ever wants to have children, Jason gets a text from Violet showing that she has both Adilyn and Jessica tied up. He rushes to their rescue, awkwardly bringing Hoyt’s girlfriend with him, as she does want children and won’t spend another minute with a nonbreeder, apparently. Jason leaves her well armed in the squad car while he goes to rescue the women from his angry ex. He goes into Violet’s house, guns ablazing, but is quickly disarmed by the irate vamp. She ties him up and adds him to the lineup of other victims filling her chamber of horrors. In typical television-evil-villain mode, Violet elaborately lays out her torture plans for her victims, including Adilyn and Wade, whom she seems to really hate. As Violet talks and talks and threatens and talks some more, she doesn’t notice Hoyt come in with a wooden-bullet gun. He puts a quick end to her rant. Note to future villains: less talking, more tormenting. It’s like no one learned anything from Austin Powers’ Dr. Evil. With Violet a pile of goo on the floor, Hoyt frees everyone, including Jessica, with whom he shares some serious oogly eyes. Sheriff Andy finally arrives on the scene and thanks Hoyt for saving his daughter. While Hoyt may not remember his relationship with Jessica, Jessica does, and she is all twitterpated at Hoyt and his heroic rescue. While she ogles her hero, Bridget is chatting up Jason, trying to find out if Jessica is his girlfriend. Later, Jessica and Jason have The Talk, and when they DTR, they realize they just want to be friends.

Hoyt joins Jason at the bar formerly known as Merlotte’s and tells him that while he is loyal to Bridget, there’s just something about Jessica. Jason gives him the green light and tells Hoyt that Jessica’s maker is dying. Hoyt shows up at Bill and Jessica’s place with a sweet offering of the vampire version of an Edible Arrangement — his own Hep V negative blood. Jessica is touched. They almost kiss before Hoyt remembers Bridget and says his farewell.

Now that Eric is cured, he and Pam want to open a bank to rake in all the money for their Hep V cure, but Gus Jr., the eminent business mind behind the Yakanomo Corp., has other ideas. He doesn’t want to cure people, but to make the new and improved Tru Blood a healthy tonic that makes people feel better and will alleviate some symptoms, but won’t completely heal them and thus make them all a lot more money. He deems Sarah Newlin’s blood a trade secret and swears Eric and Pam to secrecy. They are fine with it, but Eric does want to tell Sookie that he’s cured. He knocks on her door in the middle of the night and tells her the news. Instead of being overjoyed, she tells him that Bill is sick. Eric won’t tell her about the cure, though, but promises to return the next night with a plan. Obviously that’s not good enough for Sookie. She follows him to Fangtasia, where she is stopped by the yakuza-like thugs. They drag her inside, and Eric pretends she is just another needy fangbanger, but Gus Jr. is suspicious. Eric persuades him to let him glamour Sookie and send her on her way, and while Gus Jr. relents, he isn’t quite buying it.

Instead of going home, Sookie uses her fairy powers to bust into the basement. She knows something is hidden in there, because she read Gus Jr.’s mind. She wasn’t expecting to find Sarah Newlin tied up there though. She reads Sarah’s mind and discovers that Sarah’s blood is, in fact, the cure. Sookie leaves Sarah tied up and, instead of bringing some blood to Bill, she runs to Bill’s house and tells Jessica and Bill the good news.

The second Gus Jr. splits town, Pam and Eric head to the basement to get a vial of Sarah’s blood for Bill. That’s when Sookie and Jessica show up dragging Bill along with them. When the cure is right in front of him, though, Bill realizes something: he doesn’t want the blood. Then in a cinematographic move straight out of the Evil Dead handbook, the camera zooms in really close to Sookie’s face.

MORE: Watch Tom Hanks and Others Rehearse Scenes From Forrest Gump

MORE: Outlander Recap: Feminism and Time Travel in a Bodice-Ripping Romance? Sure!

TIME cybersecurity

Surveillance in the Movies: Fact vs. Fiction

Experts at a hacker conference answer the question every spy-movie watcher has asked: “Can they really do that?”

For those of us who don’t work at a spy agency, the “intel” we’ve gathered on what state surveillance is like comes primarily from movies and TV shows. But just how realistic are those portrayals? A panel of experts at Defcon, one of the world’s top hacker conferences taking place in Las Vegas over the weekend, had some answers.

The Simpsons Movie (2007)

“You’re collecting all this hay. How many needles are you finding in the hay?” says Kevin Bankston, policy director for the Open Technology Institute at the New America Foundation, describing the practice of bulk collection. The answer? Not many. Bulk collection has led to “one case where they convicted a cabdriver in San Diego for donating less than $10,000 to a Somali terror group,” Bankston said. “So the question is: Is it worth collecting all of our phone records for that conviction?”

When it comes specifically to this Simpsons clip, Nicole Ozer, technology and civil liberties policy director for the American Civil Liberties Union, says there have indeed been cases of “local surveillance being rolled out in the buses.”

The Bourne Supremacy (2004)

No clip available online, but, to summarize: high-tech devices listening in on conversations around the world pick up on a single phrase — “blackbriar” — that tips off the government.

“As a civil libertarian, this movie was like cinematic crack to me,” Bankston said. With the quantity of data the NSA intercepts and the data-mining abilities of modern computers, picking out a keyword from a random conversation overheard by a surveillance program is not far fetched, he said. “This is not fiction.”

Brazil (1985)

The scene above depicts government agents discussing the use of surveillance tools to eavesdrop on a love interest.

“This brings me back to my days inside the belly of the beast,” says Timothy Edgar, who from 2006 to 2009 served as the first deputy for civil liberties in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. “It’s a very realistic depiction of the kinds of compliance issues we had to address,” he said, though in reality “the technology was only slightly more obsolete.” According to Edgar, a review of NSA practices by the agency’s inspector general found that over a 10-year period there were 12 instances of intentional misuse of NSA surveillance, all relating to love interests.

The Dark Knight (2008)

A program that uses the microphones in the cell phones to create a sonar map of the city is mostly, but not entirely, insane.

“It’s a great mixture of actual plausible technology and really stupid technology,” Bankston said. Law-enforcement and intelligence agencies routinely take control of cell phones by remote in order to turn on microphones and cameras to spy on targets, but doing so with every phone in town at once would probably overwhelm the network. Bankston adds that if 30 million citizens of Gotham brought a class-action lawsuit against Bruce Wayne for this violation of the Wiretap Act, he’d be on the hook, per damages prescribed in the law, for $300 billion.

The Company You Keep (2012)

“This is a pretty straightforward depiction of cell-phone tracking,” Bankston said, which is “routinely done by local law enforcement, as well as the Feds, as well as the intelligence community.”

Minority Report (2002)

This kind of government search — thermal imaging followed by spider robots scurrying through a building and terrifying its inhabitants — is clearly unconstitutional, not to mention creepy. What’s interesting, Edgar notes, is the question of why it’s creepy.

“Is it the fact that they could find Tom Cruise by extracting this data from people in the apartment or the fact that they did it in a creepy way?” he said. (I.e., with bots that look like insects many find terrifying in their own right.) “What if we could just extract the data from the Internet of things that [were] already in your house?” With our homes becoming smarter and more wired, it’s easy to see how timely that question is.

Enemy of the State (1998)

In this scene, the head of the NSA tries to persuade a Congressman not to stop a bill that would give the agency broad new surveillance powers. The Congressman makes the argument — which we hear echoed today by firms like Google and Facebook — that the surveillance state doesn’t just invade privacy, but is bad for business at companies that depend on the trust of clients, including people outside the U.S.

Bankston noted that in the film, (spoiler alert) the NSA goes on to assassinate the Congressman. Edgar pointed out that any such assassination attempt would clearly step on Central Intelligence Agency toes.

“They would object very strongly to the NSA’s doing that,” he said.

TIME movies

America Still Loves Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Paramount immediately orders a sequel after "turtle power" sets the domestic box office alight

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot took the box office by storm this weekend with a $65 million North American debut, prompting the studio to immediately announce a sequel scheduled for June 2016.

Turtles easily took the top domestic spot over the weekend, besting another surprise August hit, Guardians of the Galaxy, the Hollywood Reporter reports. The Jonathan Liebesman–directed hit stars Megan Fox, Will Arnett and William Fichtner, and sees the four heroes in a half-shell emerging from the New York City sewers to save the metropolis from Shredder and his evil Foot Clan.

Nearly half of the audience was under 25 on Friday, and 61% of the attendees were male.

“To know moviegoers are embracing the Turtles with such enthusiasm is everything that we and all our filmmakers have been hoping for,” Paramount chief Brad Grey said in a statement.

Overall, however, revenue is down at the box office 17% this summer, even with Guardians and Turtles shoring up sales.


TIME Television

Outlander Recap: Feminism and Time Travel in a Bodice-Ripping Romance? Sure!

Ed Miller—© 2014 Sony Pictures Television

Outlander's debut episode delivers on multiple counts

If you have a predilection for epic romances and the super-specific sub-genre that is historical time-travel fiction, then you’re likely to find Outlander to be a sensory feast. Superficially, Starz’s new show is a torrid romance primed for an eager fandom desperate to re-direct their Game of Thrones enthusiasm. But Outlander is more than a sweepingly cinematic bodice ripper: it manages to shroud what fans (myself included) guilt-love about the genre in the much broader themes of history, feminism and free-will.

Though the show begins just after World War II, it largely takes place during 18th century Scotland’s Jacobite uprisings. And while Outlander doesn’t necessarily seek to give viewers a history lesson, the fact that combat nurse Claire Randall’s husband, Frank, is a historian certainly helps. Frank’s incessant musings about his Redcoat ancestors might get yawn-inducing, but they serve as a necessary device to contextualize Claire’s time travel. As she re-lives Frank’s history lessons, Claire’s melancholic voiceover firmly roots the viewer in both worlds, building a bridge between the past and present.

It’s clear from the onset that Claire will spend the majority of Outlander diligently playing the part of an English Rose who eye-sexes thistly Scots, but time travel also becomes a means for Claire to unleash her inner feminist all over a bunch of kilted bros. The creators of Outlander want us to see Claire as a freethinker, and while she is on the surface, she’s also powerless against the romance genre’s inherent constraints against true feminism. Yes, she’s smarter than her male captors and she doesn’t want to be “saved,” but she also acquiesces to the genre’s stipulation that she must be — no matter how resilient a modern-day woman she is. With that in mind, let’s dive sporran-first into Outlander‘s premiere.

Meet Claire Randall: Feminist, Sex Goddess, Hausfrau

Outlander introduces us to Claire and Frank as they celebrate their post-war reunion with a romantic trip to the Scottish Highlands, which — thanks to this show — will now be the go-to setting for fan-fic writers the world over. Claire spends much of the episode trying to mend her war-torn marriage to Frank, but while she seems content enough with her life, there’s clearly something lacking in their relationship.

Claire remained faithful throughout her time apart from Frank during the war, but his willingness to forgive any possible dalliances should be kept in mind throughout Outlander‘s freshman season. Does Claire’s eye wander because she’s asserting the right to explore her sexuality Scot-style, or because her husband gives her permission to do so? Either way, Claire and Frank spend almost all their time having sex in derelict castle cellars and creaky hotel rooms, but Claire — like Heathcliff and Cathy before her — clearly needs to unbridle her passions all over some moors, ASAP. That’s a problem that can only be solved by time travel!

Scottish Highlands Morph Into Supernatural Hot Bed

Since something is wanting in her married life, Claire spends much of her second honeymoon frolicking in the ferns of Scotland and having dusty flashbacks to her past. But then Samhain (aka Halloween) strikes, a holiday that denizens of The Highlands celebrate by pouring blood on their door frames and being macabre. Of course, Samhain also happens to be the day that Scotland’s ghost population emerges from the indistinct twilight, and Frank runs into a particularly perverted phantom on his way home, whom he catches peeping at Claire through the window. This is the first of many supernatural elements in Outlander‘s premiere, and it doesn’t feel forced, despite the first half of the episode being rooted in the business of everyday life. What’s unclear is whether there’s something innate in Claire that’s attracting the paranormal (her palm reading certainly implies as much), or whether she’s simply found herself hanging with the wrong gamboling Druids at the wrong time. (It happens to the best of us.)

In Which Claire Experiences The 1940s Version of Throwback Thursday

After some X-rated intimacy that capitalizes on Starz’s clothing-optional policy, Claire and Frank get up early and visit Craigh na Dun, an ancient stone circle that becomes a literal touchstone for Claire’s thematic journey. Along with Claire and Frank (who somehow manage not to have sex in the ferns), we witness what has to be the best slow-motion Druid dancing scene in the history of television, complete with accompanying chanting and Celtic music. It was basically like watching a vintage Kate Bush music video, with a little Mists of Avalon thrown in for good measure. How can we blame Claire for paying Craigh na Dun another visit? Only this time, she makes the mistake of touching a rock, and promptly gets transported to the 18th century.

Claire Fully Embraces Stockholm Syndrome

Apparently the 18th century Jacobite rebellions were a much more visually vibrant time than the 20th, because Claire leaves the muted tones of 1940s Scotland and wakes up in an Instagram filter. She immediately starts panic-frolicking through the grass until happening upon Frank’s doppleganger ancestor, Redcoat captain Black Jack Randall, who wastes no time trying to rape her. Luckily, Claire’s rescued by a band of kilt-wearing Scotsmen, and sets to relocating the shoulder of the hunkiest clansman, Jamie Fraser, who drops this classic pick-up line: “I’ll get me plaid loose to cover ye.” (Heard that one before.) After proving her worth, Claire puts Frank’s history lessons to use by alerting her captors of a Redcoat ambush, ultimately saving their lives.

Claire’s role as a savior certainly bolsters her unspoken identity as a feminist, but she’s not exactly free of the patriarchy, no matter what year it is. And considering that the 20th century should give her greater opportunity to be a liberated woman, it’s all the more noteworthy that her true feminist leanings surface in a world where she’s threatened with rape and casually called a whore. Claire will likely spend the remainder of Outlander navigating her new role as a clanswoman — and while she does make a failed attempt to flee her captors, by premiere’s end, our plucky heroine is almost as entrenched in her new life as we are. And I’m already cueing up my DVR for next week’s episode and hand-sewing myself a celebratory Druid costume.

TIME Television

Cranky Guy: Nixon’s Still the One

NBC News- President Richard Nixon's Resignation
President Richard Nixon gives his resignation speech from the Oval Office at the White House in Washington D.C. on Aug. 8, 1974 NBC/Getty Images

On the 40th anniversary of his resignation, we consider Nixon's legacy as a world statesman, a dirty trickster and—gasp!—our last liberal President

Correction appended, Aug. 12, 2014

In the minutes before his 37th speech from the Oval Office, the 37th President of the United States bantered nervously with the CBS camera crew. He ran a sound check of the first words of his text (“My fellow Americans”) and made a joke about White House photographer Fred J. Maroon—”I’m afraid he’ll catch me pickin’ my nose.” After delivering the 3 min. 40 sec. address on national TV, he rose from his desk and, as he walked out, told the crew, “Have a merry Christmas, fellas.”

In August.

Forty years ago today, Richard Nixon became the first U.S. President to resign from office. He had been re-elected to serve four more years in 1972, with the slogan “Now more than ever.” In his victory over George McGovern, he received more votes than any other President in history. But faced with impeachment by the House of Representatives over the Watergate scandal, Nixon announced his resignation in that Thursday-night speech. At noon the following day, Aug. 9, 1974, he raised his hands flashing inappropriate and pathetic double-victory signs and helicoptered off the White House lawn to Andrews Air Force Base, from which he made his final trip on Air Force One to his San Clemente redoubt.

Gerald Ford, who then became President, spoke to the nation: “My fellow Americans, our long national nightmare is over.

(WATCH: Harry Shearer’s re-enactment of Richard Nixon preparing for his resignation speech)

Many Americans then and since thought of Nixon’s 5 1/2-year reign as a long national nightmare. When the disgraced Chief Executive died in 1994, historian Jonathan Rauch wrote in the New Republic that Nixon’s had been “the worst presidency of the century.” Inheriting the Vietnam morass from Lyndon Johnson, Nixon promised to “end the war and win the peace,” yet he extended U.S. and allied military action into Cambodia, resulting in a half-million Southeast Asian deaths and 15,000 extra names on the Vietnam Memorial. Paranoid and prejudiced, he ordered his minions to spy illegally on his perceived enemies, who were many. He did not know in advance of the June 1972 break-in of the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate Hotel, but he approved its cover-up and lied about the conspiracy. Tapes of these conversations, which he had made for posterity, led to his downfall. Nixon resigned because he bugged himself.

Nixon’s shifty eyes and perpetual 5 o’clock shadow made him a natural fit for caricatured villainy. According to the Internet Movie Database, he has been impersonated in more than 80 films and television shows, from Dan Aykroyd’s Nixon (with John Belushi’s Henry Kissinger) on Saturday Night Live to the double-barreled blast in 2008: Frank Langella in Frost/Nixon and Josh Brolin in Oliver Stone’s biopic. For many Nixon haters, he is the character Rip Torn excoriated in Blind Ambition, or the mad wailer incarnated by Philip Baker Hall in Robert Altman’s Secret Honor. In the decade after his resignation, when those portrayals took hold, until today, the very mention of Nixon can cause splenetic outbursts from liberals who lived through his long career.

(READ: Richard Corliss on Richard Nixon and Frost/Nixon)

Even those who might sympathize with Nixon have to acknowledge that the man was no natural performer. In fact, he was one of a surprisingly high number of presidential aspirants who rose in the first era of TV but seemed incapable of selling their No. 1 product: themselves. Dwight Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan, Jack Kennedy, Bill Clinton, Barack Obama and, in his faux-cowboy fashion, George W. Bush could make the sale; Adlai Stevenson, Hubert Humphrey, George H.W. Bush, Bob Dole, Al Gore, John Kerry, John McCain and Mitt Romney could not, because they rarely gave the impression they were comfortable in their own skin. Nixon, with his mellifluous baritone, was a great politician for radio but creepy on TV.

He gave his opponents plenty of reasons to put him on their own enemy lists, beginning with his first run for Congress in 1946, when he daubed his rival, Helen Gahagan Douglas, with red smears. He teamed with Senator Joe McCarthy in exposing, or inventing, communist spies in the U.S. government. A charge of financial improprieties nearly lost Nixon his spot as Eisenhower’s running mate in the 1952 presidential election, until he took to the airwaves with his Checkers speech, declaring that he would not return the gift of a little dog that his daughters loved. Narrowly defeated by Kennedy in the 1960 presidential race, Nixon then ran for California governor, losing to the incumbent, Pat Brown, and later declaring to the press, “You won’t have Nixon to kick around anymore.”

That was Tricky Dick: mean winner, sore loser.

People kept kicking him around for decades. He eventually found surprising allies among what was left of the American left. Noam Chomsky, of whom few are leftier, called Nixon “the last liberal American President.” Sometimes goaded by large Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress, but often initiating the proposals, Nixon signed bills to create the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration for workers’ injury claims and Title IX (sponsored by Democratic Senator Birch Bayh), which subsidized women’s sports programs. He fought for affirmative-action hiring policies and approved legislation that enabled injured workers under 65 to receive Medicare.

(READ: Why Noam Chomsky thinks Richard Nixon was the last liberal American President)

Nixon nominated four Justices to the Supreme Court, all of whom Congress approved, and three of whom voted with the 7-2 majority in the Roe v. Wade decision allowing abortions. Nixon appointee Harry Blackmun wrote the majority opinion, about which the President made no public declaration. (If he had appointed four pro-lifers to the court, the judgment would not have passed.) Nixon also instituted cost-of-living adjustments to Social Security and pushed for a comprehensive health care program, to be financed through then new HMOs. His negotiations with Senator Ted Kennedy foundered when Kennedy pushed for a single-payer plan. The Nixon version, with a few wrinkles, passed in 2010 as the Affordable Care Act.

Last Monday, Stephen Colbert devoted an entire episode of his show to assessing the legacy of a man he described as “my all-time favorite non-Reagan President, non-Cheney Vice President and non-Oats Quaker.” Colbert noted that Nixon “founded the EPA, ended school segregation, lowered the voting age to 18 and endorsed the Equal Rights Amendment. But his greatest achievement was restoring diplomatic relations with China, for which we owe Nixon a lasting debt, and China $1.3 trillion.” This is mostly true. Nixon did sign the 26th Amendment, which allowed 18-year-olds to vote, “despite my misgivings about the constitutionality of this one provision.” He met communist leader Mao Zedong to launch a détente as trade partners. He signed an Executive Order to establish the Environmental Protection Agency, endorsed Congress’s passage of the ERA for women and, over the objections of Vice President Spiro Agnew, enforced school desegregation.

(SEE: The Colbert Report episode on Richard Nixon)

Re-revisionists like Erik Loomis argue that “Richard Nixon was a liberal in no way … Nixon didn’t like signing those bills. He would have LOVED to rule in the 1980s when he could slash the welfare state, kill Central American commies, ignore the AIDS crisis, and undermine environmental regulations. But he couldn’t do that between 1969 and 1974 … As it was, he wanted to build support for the war by signing relatively liberal legislation.” Whatever Nixon, or today’s conservatives, might have loved to do, he did what he did. And instead of vilifying liberals, whom he may have deeply opposed and irrationally feared, he would quote Franklin Roosevelt’s definition—”It is a wonderful definition, and I agree with him”—that “a liberal is a man who wants to build bridges over the chasms that separate humanity from a better life.”

By any definition, Nixon and the Congress achieved a spectacular liberal domestic agenda between 1969 and 1974. “The War President” was really Lyndon Johnson: the Next Generation, lowering defense spending and pushing Johnson’s commitment to the Great Society. During Nixon’s presidency, the government slashed its defense budget’s share of the GDP by more than 50% and raised social-welfare programs by two-thirds; as Rauch notes, “this was a staggering change to have made in only six years.” Food-stamp benefits, welfare assistance, the minimum wage: they all went up under Nixon.

(READ: Jonathan Rauch on “the worst presidency of the century”)

In part, they went up because, for half a century, from Roosevelt to Jimmy Carter, the flow of federal entitlements was essentially progressive. Poor and working-class citizens got more assistance, and by 1975 the richest Americans—the top half of the wealthiest 1%—reached the lowest proportion of the GDP in the past 100 years. That drift shifted in the 1980s under Reagan, who put skids on New Deal, Fair Deal and Great Society legislation. Since then, the countercurrent has swelled to tidal-wave proportions. In 2008, as Obama and McCain vied for the presidency, political commentator Samuel Smith itemized Nixon’s agenda in an AlterNet story under this headline: “If Nixon Were Alive Today, He Would Be Far Too Liberal to Get Even the Democratic Nomination.”

Obamacare notwithstanding, the current President’s progressive instincts have been neutered by the rise of the Tea Party and Luddite conservatism. Speaker of the House John Boehner, when asked about his Congress’s reluctance to pass new laws, has said his mandate is to repeal the bad old ones—by which he means social programs. (We must not stand still; we must march boldly backward.) The top half of the 1%, and the corporations they run, have regained all their power and loot, plus some. The Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act. State assemblies manipulate laws to close legal abortion clinics. Citizens along the southern border tremble with rage at the influx of immigrants who would bolster our workforce in jobs that few Americans are willing to take. We are close to becoming the “pitiful, helpless giant” that Nixon described and denounced during the Vietnam War.

Forty years later, we can see Nixon as personally vindictive and socially generous, a small-minded man with a big-picture worldview. He wielded presidential power in ways both vicious and benevolent. Going against his conservative instincts, but perhaps listening to the Quaker voice from his youth, he endorsed progressive legislation that later Republicans have worked hard, largely successfully, to overturn. Liberals may hate themselves for thinking it, but they’d be tempted to honor Richard Nixon—now more than ever.

Correction: The original article misidentified the party of Indiana Senator Birch Bayh. He was a Democratic Senator. The article also misspelled the name of Helen Gahagan Douglas.

TIME celebrities

Kim Kardashian Is Publishing A 352-Page Book of Her Own Selfies

Kim Kardashian Promotes Kardashian Sun Kissed At ULTA Beauty In Los Angeles
Kim Kardashian celebrates summer with the Kardashian Sun Kissed line and fans at ULTA Beauty on August 6, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. Jason Merritt—Getty Images

Is it a dark descent into megalomania and vanity, or high art, or both?

In what may be our epoch’s most brilliant statement ever on millennial culture, Kim Kardashian is working on a book that will consist purely of her selfies. “Selfish,” to be published by Rizzoli’s Universe imprint, will feature “many never-before-seen personal images,” according to the book’s description, and appears to not be a parody.

Besides being a full-throated celebration of narcissism at its sultriest and most duck-lipped, it could, theoretically, be a moneymaker. Or a work of art that defines our times, apparently:

“Widely regarded as a trailblazer of the “selfie movement”—a modern-day self-portrait of the digital age—Kim has mastered the art of taking flattering and highly personal photos of oneself,” says Rizzoli in its description of the book.

The $20 book will be 352 pages long and feature close-ups of the starlet’s pouting face on page after page, until each of those pages are filled.

Her photos are sure to run the gamut from sexually suggestive to sexually suggestive, much like her Instagram. If you can’t get enough of Kim’s coy, sidelong glance and her curiously vacant eyes, this book’s for your coffee table.

TIME movies

Go Behind the Scenes of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Megan Fox

Go behind the scenes of the new film Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and more specifically, Megan Fox

Take an inside look into the newly released action film, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, starring Megan Fox and Will Arnett and produced by Michael Bay.

The Turtles are back on the big screen for the first time since 2007 in a brand new adaptation, with director Jonathan Liebesman utilizing CGI and other technology in order to bring the mutant superheroes to life.

In this behind-the-scenes look at the new movie, Fox and Liebesman discuss the Turtles themselves and offer up more scenes for an added sneak peek.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is now playing in theaters nationwide.

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