Mayhem: The 1970s You Never Knew

In a world filled with scandals and secrets, economic chaos reigns. Revolution is in the air. War ripples at home and abroad, as America unravels into the decade of defiance.

Episode 12

It was supposed to be a picturesque and luxurious sightseeing tour over Antarctica. One filled with wonder and awe, in a tour that had cultivated a reputation for giving passengers the “trip of a lifetime.” But what began as an adventurous flight near Mt. Erebus, the southernmost active volcano in the world, became one of New Zealand’s most catastrophic accidents. What really happened? And who was ultimately responsible? Meanwhile, President Carter had just lost the election to Ronald Regan, who announced the release of the hostages in Iran the same day he was inaugurated. Was this timing a coincidence? Read the show notes.

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Episode 11

“You are now leaving Iranian air space!” It was a moment that dozens of hostages and their loved ones longed for with bated breath, for 444 days. Freedom. To be released, and returned home. The Iranian hostage crisis captured the attention of the world, but how did we get there? President Jimmy Carter was in Iran for a New Year’s celebration in 1978, and his infamous toast would have become a viral clip had it taken place today. Little did he know that days later, an Iranian newspaper article would set off months of cyclical rioting, protests, and ultimately the invasion of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, with 66 Americans being taken hostage. Read the show notes.

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Episode 10

A religious leader with a raging drug addiction who led his following to a tragic end. A President with the hope of finding peace between Israel and Egypt. And a politician who was pivotal to the early LGBTQ+ rights movement, and lost his life in the process. Join us as we explore the stories of three men in 1978 who all had specific visions of the world, and the reality of those visions coming to fruition. If you’ve ever wondered where the term “Don’t drink the Kool-Aid” came from, or you want some context for what is happening in the Middle East, you’re in the right place. Read the show notes.

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Episode 9

Did you know that Star Wars almost started a war in real life, over a sandcrawler model? Would the film have been so wildly successful if someone else had been cast in the role of Han Solo, such as – let’s say – Christopher Walken? How would a band today be received if their drug use was so integral to their music, that they considered thanking their dealer in the liner notes? And let’s take that iPhone from your pocket, and compare it to the speed of an Apple II computer in 1977, which was 3,000 times slower. Join us as we explore revolutionary cultural shifts in the late 70s, and how these phenomena have evolved in the last four decades. Read the show notes.

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Episode 8

A happenstance introduction to Charles Manson. Assassination attempts against President Ford– a man who was never elected to the vice presidency or presidency. And the kidnapping of college student and newspaper heiress, 19-year-old Patty Hearst, that rocked the nation. Following Nixon’s resignation and the end of the Vietnam war, the country was in freefall. When, and how, did the U.S. begin to mend its wounds from political scandal and years of a grueling war? And what role did an unconventional campaign and powerful grassroots efforts have, regarding a certain peanut farmer who would later become president? Read the show notes.

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Episode 7

Draft dodging. When did the draft lottery begin for the war in Vietnam, and who among America’s youth was hit the hardest? It was an unwinnable war, and thousands of high school graduates and college students refused to comply. What sparked these explosive protests nationwide? What role was marijuana and heroin playing back in Vietnam? And how did two decades of the costly, divisive conflict finally come to an end? Read the show notes.

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Episode 6

A cover up that cost Nixon's presidency, a pardon that cost Gerald R. Ford his election, and a friendship dating back to the 1940s. It was the first time a President had been impeached, and the only time in U.S. history that a President resigned from office. The betrayal of the public’s trust reverberated well beyond Nixon’s presidency in a time of economic turmoil, but what happened following Nixon’s departure from office? How did the new Ford administration attempt to gain control over the rising unemployment and double-digit inflation? Join us as we learn about how this confluence of events created economic instability, unhappiness, and impacted the mood of the country in 1974. Read the show notes.

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Episode 5

The right to privacy, a 22-year-old who went by the pseudonym “Jane Roe,” and one of the most famous court cases in United States history. Join us as we learn what happened leading up to Roe v. Wade, the fate of Norma McCorvey following the Supreme Court’s ruling, and how this piece of history echoes in the present day. That is not the only ghost of 1973 history that is still relevant, though. If you’re curious about how an oil embargo in the 70s impacts today’s gas prices and oil reserves, and you’d like to better understand a piece of Israel's history and how it ties into present-day events, you’re in the right place. Read the show notes.

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Episode 4

Deep Throat, Operation Gemstone, two valiant reporters, and a secret 30 years in the making. Watergate was not a single scandal, but rather an avalanche of events and co-conspirators, all engaged in corruption to keep President Nixon in office. The stakes were so high that Nixon’s Special Security Advisor, G. Gordon Liddy, lived under fear of being assassinated, and the wife of Nixon’s Campaign Director & Attorney General was drugged and held captive in a hotel room to keep her silent. What was the “smoking gun” that led to the toppling of this enterprise? Was it the tapes Nixon secretly recorded, and the 18-minute gap, that ultimately pushed Nixon to be the first and only President to resign? Read the show notes.

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Episode 3

''The week that changed the world.” Was it a chance encounter at the World Tennis Championship in 1971, “Panda diplomacy” between the U.S. and Communist China, or a break-in at the Democratic National Headquarters by a team of 5 burglars, that drastically altered the trajectory of world history? It was around this time that the Women’s Equity Action League also filed one of the farthest-reaching Class Action lawsuits, leading to President Nixon signing the Education Act into law. Join us as we talk about the origins of the Watergate scandal, the landslide victory that kept Nixon in office, and the establishment of Title IX.  Read the show notes.

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Episode 2

Secret Police, CIA operatives, The Pentagon Papers, and The Most Dangerous Man in America. There was a time in the not-so-distant past, when the nightly news changed the game in how Americans felt about the war in Vietnam, the first “television war.” What was more of a shock to some though, was the realization that the American public had been lied to for decades by the U.S. government, spanning four presidential administrations. How did this influence the Watergate scandal? And how did the lavish “gathering of the Century” in Iran, attended by Vice President Agnew, tie into future allegations of broad political corruption? Read the show notes.

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Episode 1

As the decade devolved into war at home and abroad, Apollo13 flew high above earth with the hope of landing safely on the surface of the moon. But then: disaster struck, and time was on no one’s side. Meanwhile, thousands of miles below the Apollo 13 spacecraft, a nationwide uprising among college students ended in disaster at Kent State and Jackson State Universities. With special guest Apollo 13 astronaut, Fred Haise. Read the show notes.

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