Sneak Preview for Patreon Supporters: Lonely Midterm 1970

Culture wars, counter culture, throwing eggs and stones, and the most aggressive use of Air Force One that a midterm election had seen up to its time. A television flub, a leaked memo, a last-minute TV commercial. And we still don’t know who won the midterm of this year. We look at Nixon’s only midterm…

A History of a History – Ken Burns “The Civil War”

In 1990, a significant TV event happened as PBS stole ratings from major networks. The event was a ground-breaking documentary of what is possibly the most important event in American history, one that cut through the Gone-with-the-Wind and glorified type images that had been in movies up to that date. Still the documentary used new…

Like the Visions of a Fever: America in Pre-War 1941

A look at pre-war America, 1941, the passage of Lend-Lease, and the sinking of four ships in the Atlantic. Robin Moor, Greer, Kearny and Ruben James, each inflicting a body blow but not yet producing war. As Americans waited for war in one ocean, war came in another. We are part of Airwave Media Network…

The Force That Could Not Be Stopped

The way Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. approached civil rights was not passive – it was in your face, give no “Fs” style as might be said today. He made some enemies but also got a lot done. In telling the story of Congress’s seating powers we tell two stories. One is his. The other is…

And To The Republic

A trip to DC inspires me. I try to talk about just about everything going on in this episode from midterms to J6 to Mara Lago to the Republic as it stands, to third parties in US politics, to former Presidents running to a town name in New York that I butchered. And in case…

Now, That’s The Right Way to Lose an Election

Samuel Tilden is visited by throngs of supporters who want him to proclaim from his balcony that he is President. His answer takes place in a closed meeting, but we are privy to the moment thanks to a political reporter’s account. William C. Hudson was able to witness the actions of that candidate when urged…

“We gotta go and never stop going” The Modern American Year of 1948

The Elvis before Elvis. Making stores out of jukebox technology. World human rights. What a concept? From sending simian astronauts (read monkeys) into space, to the writing of Jack Kerouac – his roadtrip to Cassidy which will beget On the Road begins this year. And of course, there’s Truman’s election surprise.. We scour the My…

Elephant in the Room: Former Presidents and Their Parties

About Presidents and their parties, particularly situations where a former President who was not re-elected is still in the political picture. There can be some interesting challenges for the party. We look at four cases in history, Gerald Ford’s golfing and soft-pedaling in 1980, Truman’s attack on a front-runner in 1956, Bush’s largely successful exeunt…

Smiling Like He Meant It: Vice President Schuyler Colfax

Hero, smiler, progressive-minded politician, crook, orator, storyteller, friend to Lincoln. These are the labels that have been put on this forgotten Vice President of the United States.he bended ear the Lincoln, but a scandal ended his political career. Still he warrants mention. Last week we looked at Thomas Hendricks as part of our summer look at…

Wills On Duty: The Story of Watergate Security Guard Frank Wills

You’d think he’d be a household name, but he never quite was. Frank Wills discovered the Watergate burglary. From the beginning of his shift he noticed a door had been deliberately held unlocked in the basement of The Watergate Office Complex. The rest became history. But for Wills it was bittersweet. While others, even convicted…

A Midterm Election About Nothing, and Other Stories

Not all midterms are bad for the President’s party. It’s just that, most of the midterms in history go against the party in The White House.. We’ll discuss 1990’s “Seinfeld Midterm,” (the midterm about nothing, 1978 Carter first “not that bad” midterm, and others. We’ll look at these and others where the party in the…

George B. McClellan, Jr. Would Like a Word

George B. McClellan Junior, son of the Union general and Mayor of New York City for two turn-of-the century terms is not history’s usual voice, his takes are different. He saw Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson at their most base and political. He became mayor of the nation’s largest city and talked about for its…