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Tue Dec 11, 2018, 05:28 PM

Dr. Maddow's Bagman podcast is unique and brilliant. (plus a couple of notes)

If you haven't listened to the Bagman podcast please do. It is of unusual quality in that it incorporates an unusual amount of original research.

For the younger folks Agnew was Trump before Trump except he was literate. He was picked by Nixon after only 2 years as Governor of Maryland.

In the middle of the closing days of Watergate the country was astonished to hear that Agnew was also being investigated for bribery, extortion and other crimes. A few days after the rumors surface Agnew resigns and is convicted. Ford becomes Vice President.

The Bagman has gone back an unearthed original documents and incorporated an unusual group to join in discussing the events. Not only are the prosecutors (one in his 20s at the time) included but Agnew's defense attorney gives candid remarks. The latter was able to be included because client/attorney privilege was pierced.

You know that you are listening to some outstanding research when the primary actors remark "we never knew that". None of the people who were involved have met each other in the 45 years. It is a heroic story of how young dedicated prosecutors saved the country from a second impeachment trauma by pursuing the case against Agnew.


I had 3 odd intersections with Agnew (none personal)

1) In 1968 a Gonzaga U student was the first to stand up to Agnew and yelled "Warmonger" at Agnew. I was there among 30 protestors and watched in astonishment as the police dragged him away. As a 14 year old it was the first time I attended a political protest.

You can read about Carl Maxey (Spokane's lone civil rights attorney and father of a classmate here)' He successfully overturned the conviction.

https://law.justia.com/cases/washington/supreme-court/1971/40913-1.html

The city was represented by the brother of my next door neighbor who were active Democrats.

2) in 1972 I was asked to attend a meeting with Governor Evans who wanted to hear advise on whether he should cancel his vacation and escort Agnew around Spokane on his reelection campaign.

About a dozen people attended. Most were Republicans. Two Democrats, a union leader and myself were included. Everyone was polite until it came to me and I conceded that he would have to meet him but that Agnew was a despicable person. On the ride down in the elevator the Chairman of the County Republican Party asked me if I was a communist.

3) Its now 1981 and I am working for IOM as chief of operations for refugee resettlement in bangkok. A major part of what we did was arrange air transport and our Chief of Mission was French so we had our offices in the Air France building on Pat Pong which had two main businesses: Airline Offices and Go Go Bars at night.

One lunch I look out the window and exclaim "There goes Spiro Agnew". I have to explain to the Europeans who Agnew is and I wish I could tell you that I jumped up and shouted something great like "how did that whole warmonger business go for you?" but we just watched in astonishment as he walked into the only business of ill repute that operated during the day; the Thermador Massage Parlor.

One of the things that Dr. Maddow reveals is why Agnew needed the money, which is how this latter anecdote is related to chapter 6 in the Bagman.

The attorneys reveal that Agnew needed the money because he had multiple mistresses and also engaged in highly salacious behavior that is hinted at but not specified.

For those that think that Trump cannot be removed from office please remember that Nixon/Agnew had the greatest landslide in US history winning with 49 states. Two years later both Nixon and Agnew were out of office.

When the Presidential Approval Rating hits 30% and the Murdoch family decides that they have more to make with a Pence rehabilitation rather than the daily temper tantrum of Trump the bottom will fall out and Trump will be gone. Until then we must pursue the facts without favor or prejudice.

For anyone that knows Carl Maxey you will find this interesting:

http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2008/aug/03/a-leader-a-fighter/

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Reply Dr. Maddow's Bagman podcast is unique and brilliant. (plus a couple of notes) (Original post)
grantcart Dec 2018 OP
hlthe2b Dec 2018 #1
grantcart Dec 2018 #2
dlk Dec 2018 #3
iscooterliberally Jan 2019 #4

Response to grantcart (Original post)

Tue Dec 11, 2018, 05:35 PM

1. Yes... Bag Man was excellent. My first introduction to Spiro Agnew and...

John Denver during his earliest politically-influenced folk songs:




I think that alone gave me an abiding affection for Denver....


Your account is probably the most extensive personal knowledge of Agnew I've come across. Interesting....

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Response to hlthe2b (Reply #1)

Tue Dec 11, 2018, 05:38 PM

2. Priceless

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Response to grantcart (Original post)

Tue Dec 11, 2018, 05:47 PM

3. Part of Bagman's Excellence is Showing the Continuation of Republican Criminality

There is much from this story that is relevant to today. It's as if Republicans doubled down and decided to do a better job of committing crimes and covering them up, instead of cleaning up their act. Will Trump's inevitable downfall be enough for them to change their crooked ways, or will they just continue in the same vein, hoping not to get caught the next time?

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Response to grantcart (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 04:05 PM

4. I just listened to it.

I didn't see your post last month, but Rachel was on Fresh Air yesterday and the interview was very interesting. I was only about 10 years old when all this went down. I remembered Agnew's name, but only barely. I did remember that he got in trouble too, but I thought it was part of Watergate and not a completely separate investigation. This guy really was just like Trump except that he could speak in complete sentences. I don't think he was much smarter though. It's amazing how much this story resonates with what is going on today. It's also amazing how much it all got buried so deep in history.

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