This Day in Esoteric Political History

By Jody Avirgan & Radiotopia

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Subscribers: 620
Reviews: 3

knnnn
 Aug 29, 2020
Learn something new every time I listen. Great hosts and guests.


 Jun 25, 2020


 Jun 3, 2020

Description

We’re living in unprecedented times. Maybe. In this show, Jody Avirgan, political historian Nicole Hemmer, and special guests take one moment, big or small, from that day in U.S. political history and explore how it might inform our present –– all in about fifteen minutes. New episodes release Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays. Find us at ThisDayPod.com. We’re also posting about moments from the past @thisdaypod on Twitter and Instagram. If you have a suggestion for a topic, get in touch. This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of the Radiotopia podcast network from PRX.


Episode Date
Inauguration Day Special (and Kellie's First Show!)
23:45

On this Inauguration Day 2021, we look back at some notable other transition ceremonies, and discuss whether the day is pure symbolism or if it actually matters.

Plus, a big announcement about the show — Kellie Carter Jackson is joining as a third host! Find out more about her, Jody Avirgan, and Nicole Hemmer on our website.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Jan 19, 2021
The Pets.Com Implosion (2001) w/ Julia Furlan
18:31

It’s January 17th. On this day in 2001, the company pets.com was in the process of liquidating its assets, after just 18 months in existence.

Jody and Niki are joined by Julia Furlan to discuss the 2000 dot-com bubble, why companies like pets.com got so big and went so broke; and what lessons there are about the difference between the stock market and the real economy.

Julia is the host of the Vox podcast series “Go for Broke.” The first season is all about the 2000 bubble.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Jan 17, 2021
Ford's (Second) Assassin (1976)
18:50

It’s January 14th. On this day in 1976, Sara Jane Moore was sentenced to life for her attempt to assassinate President Gerald Ford.

Jody and Niki discuss Moore’s life, motivations, and the landscape of apocalyptic political violence that extended from the late 60s into the mid-70s.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Jan 14, 2021
Victory Sausages (1943)
16:11

It’s January 12th. On this day in 1943, the US announces limits to the amount of meat Americans could eat, as well as a re-working of the meat content in sausages and other products.

Jody and Niki discuss the rationing in WWII, and the wartime re-branding efforts of a lot of common American items.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Jan 12, 2021
Vatican Ties (1984)
17:12

It’s January 10th. On this day in 1984, the United States and the Vatican established formal diplomatic relations for the first time in 117 years.

Jody and Niki discuss the history of anti-Catholic sentiment in the United States, and how the fear of Communism finally brought Ronald Reagan and Pope John Paul II together.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Jan 10, 2021
Bush Vomits on the Japanese PM (1992)
16:25

It’s January 8th. On this day in 1992, President George HW Bush, on a diplomatic trip to Japan, ate some bad food and vomited during a state dinner, right onto the lap of the Japanese Prime Minister.

Jody and Niki discuss the event, the larger context of US-Japan relationships, and what counts as a gaffe in American politics. Plus, some thoughts on other embarrassing political moments.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Jan 08, 2021
The Nixon Recount Committee (1961)
17:35

It’s January 5th. On this day in 1961, Vice President Richard Nixon, acting as President of the Senate, certified the electoral college results of the 1960 election, which he had lost to John F Kennedy. But this was after a long fight and lots of questions, conspiracy theories, and efforts to throw the election result into contest. Sound familiar?

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Jan 05, 2021
2020 Favorite: "Coya Come Home" w/ Harry Enten
13:05

To wrap up 2020, and give ourselves a week off, we’re re-running some of our favorite episodes from the year. Thanks for listening all year, and we have lots more in store for 2021!

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On May 7th, Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Harry Enten of CNN discussed the “Coya Come Home” letter — a public letter written by the husband of MN representative Coya Knutson, demanding that she leave office and return to domestic life.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Jan 03, 2021
2020 Favorite: Dukakis on the Tank w/ Amy Walter
20:48

To wrap up 2020, and give ourselves a week off, we’re re-running some of our favorite episodes from the year. Thanks for listening all year, and we have lots more in store for 2021!

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On September 13th in 1988, Democratic nominee Michael Dukakis boarded an M-1 tank in order to set up a photo op, ostensibly to make him look tough on defense. It backfired horribly.

Jody and Niki are joined by Amy Walter of the Cook Political Reporter and The Takeaway to discuss the tank photo, huge polling collapses, and the power of attack ads.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 31, 2020
2020 Favorite: Wyoming's Suffrage w/ Maeve Higgins
13:16

To wrap up 2020, and give ourselves a week off, we’re re-running some of our favorite episodes from the year. Thanks for listening all year, and we have lots more in store for 2021!

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On July 23rd, 1890, Wyoming celebrated its entry into the United States. And it was doing so as a state that granted women the right to vote.

Jody and Niki are joined by Maeve Higgins of the New York Times and the podcast Mothers of Invention to discuss the suffrage movement on the American frontier.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 29, 2020
2020 Favorite: Obama's Tan Suit w/ Sam Sanders
14:31

To wrap up 2020, and give ourselves a week off, we’re re-running some of our favorite episodes from the year. Thanks for listening all year, and we have lots more in store for 2021!

/////

On August 24th in 2014, President Barack Obama gave a press conference about Ukraine and ISIS and foreign policy — but much of the political chatter was about his choice of tan suit.

Jody and Niki are joined by Sam Sanders of NPR’s “It’s Been A Minute” to discuss the “scandal” and what it how it represented a shifting moment in political coverage.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 27, 2020
The War On Christmas (Part 2) w/ Michael Hobbes
26:32

It’s December 24nd. This Christmas week, we’re doing something a little different — a two-part special on the history of The War on Christmas.

In part two, Jody and Nikki are joined by Michael Hobbes of “You’re Wrong About” to go back in time and explore the surprising roots of the War on Christmas, from the Puritans to the Egg Nog Riot to the Red Scare.

Michael Hobbes’s podcasts are “You’re Wrong About” and “Maintenance Phase.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 24, 2020
The War On Christmas (Part 1) w/ Michael Hobbes
27:26

It’s December 22nd. This Christmas week, we’re doing something a little different — a two-part special on the history of The War on Christmas.

In part one, Jody and Nikki are joined by Michael Hobbes of “You’re Wrong About” to discuss the recent history of the War, beginning with a Bill O’Reilly segment on Fox News in December 2004.

Michael Hobbes’s podcasts are “You’re Wrong About” and “Maintenance Phase.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 22, 2020
Back On The Montgomery Bus (1956) w/ Christina Greer
18:56

It’s December 20th. On this day in 1956, the Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott ended after 381 days.

Jody and Niki are joined by Christina Greer of Fordham University to discuss what brought the boycott to an end, and the hard work that took place on the ground to maintain pressure and de-segregate the public bus system.

Christina Greer is a co-host of “FAQNYC” and her new podcast with The Griot is “What’s In It For Us.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 20, 2020
Ellis Island Opens (1900) w/ Brian Lehrer
25:10

It’s December 17th. On this day in 1900, the Ellis Island immigration center in New York harbor opened its doors.

Jody and Niki are joined by Brian Lehrer of WNYC to discuss the new wave of immigrants that entered the country in the first decades of the 1900s, and how the story of American immigration has evolved over the years.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 17, 2020
Boss Tweed Goes Down (1871)
19:02

It’s December 15th. On this day in 1871, William “Boss” Tweed is arrested in Manhattan while returning to the city to, reportedly, see the Christmas lights.

Jody and Niki discuss what this moment means for Boss Tweed and the notorious Tammany Hall power structure in New York City. Tweed spent much of the 1860s pulling the puppet strings in NYC, and would spend much of the next decade on the run from the law.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 15, 2020
Trump the Moderator (2011) w/ James Poniewozik
26:22

It’s December 13th. On this day in 2011, Donald Trump wrote a letter announcing that he was bowing out of moderating (!) a Newsmax presidential debate.

Jody and Niki are joined by James Poniewozik of the New York Times to discuss Trump’s flirtation with both moderating a debate and running for president, and how the conservative media ecosystem has evolved over the last 10 years.

James’s latest book is “Audience of One.” Nikki’s book i “Messengers of the Right.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 13, 2020
The Great Toledo War (1836) w/ Hanif Abdurraqib
20:58

It’s December 10th. On this day in 1836, the final days of the “Great Toledo War,” a conflict over a strip of territory between the state of Ohio and the territory of Michigan.

Jody and Niki are joined by Hanif Abdurraqib to discuss the origins of the battle, whether it qualifies as a “war,” and what to make of the ongoing Ohio-Michigan rivalry.

Hanif is the host of the latest season of the excellent music podcast “Lost Notes.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 10, 2020
The ANTI-Suffragettes (1915) w/ Kimberly Hamlin
21:02

It’s December 8th. On this day in 1915, newspapers reported a “near riot” at a meeting of the Democratic party, when pro- and anti-suffrage women debated each other over the right to vote.

Jody and Niki are joined by Kimberly Hamlin of Miami University to discuss the “ANTIs” — women who fought against the right to vote.

Kimberly’s most recent book is “Free Thinker: Sex, Suffrage, and the Extraordinary Life of Helen Hamilton Gardener”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 08, 2020
United States vs One Book Called Ulysses (1933) w/ Kurt Andersen
21:52

It’s December 6th. On this day in 1933, a judge ruled that James Joyce’s “Ulysses,” which had been effectively banned in the United States, was not obscene.

Jody and Niki are joined by Kurt Andersen to discuss the ruling, the history of obscenity laws in the United States, and what to make of the current debates over free speech.

Kurt’s recent books are “Fantasylad” and “Evil Geniuses.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 06, 2020
US, Meet UN (1945)
18:06

It’s December 3rd. On this day in 1945 (technically, December 4th), the United States Senate voted to ratify an agreement to have the US join the United Nations.

Jody and Niki discuss the domestic politics that led to this moment, the lessons from the failed entry of the US into the League of Nations, and whether FDR gets enough credit in this story.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 03, 2020
John Brown's Body (1859)
20:06

It’s December 1st. On this day in 1859, abolitionist John Brown was awaiting his execution by the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Jody and Niki discuss John Brown’s raid on Harper’s Ferry, how much he wanted to spark revolution in his lifetime or become a martyr in death; and how contemporary depictions of Brown have reflected the politics of the time.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Dec 01, 2020
Harvey Milk is Assassinated (1978)
18:02

It’s November 29th. On this day in 1978, San Fransisco is in mourning, and there is violence in the streets, in the wake of the assassination of Harvey Milk, a board of supervisors member and gay rights advocate.

Jody and Niki discus the legacy of Harvey Milk, his evolution as a gay rights advocate, and the so-called “Twinkie Defense.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 29, 2020
Franksgiving! (1939) w/ Adam Conover
23:07

It’s November 26th. On this day in 1939, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt had declared that Thanksgiving would take place a week earlier than usual. Americans were not happy.

Jody and Niki are joined by Adam Conover of “Adam Ruins Everything” and the podcast Factually to discuss why FDR tried to move the holiday, how it became politicized, and what Thanksgiving means to us in 2020.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 26, 2020
The Alcatraz Occupation (1969) w/ Julian Brave Noisecat
19:17

It’s November 24th. On this day in 1969, Native American activists have staged an occupation of Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay.

Jody and Niki are joined by Julian Brave Noisecat to discuss the 19-month occupation, often considered the birth of the modern Indigenous rights movement — and how exactly the protesters managed to pull off the occupation of the island.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

If you want to support the show directly, you can do so on our website: ThisDayPod.com

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 24, 2020
Queen of Code (1943) w/ Mar Hicks
22:09

It’s November 22nd. On this day in 2016, Barack Obama awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to computer programmer Grace Hopper, who entered the Navy in the mid-1940s and helped pioneer a lot of modern electronic computing.

Jody and Niki are joined by Mar Hicks of Illinois Tech University to discuss Hopper’s legacy, her knack for storytelling, and the other women whose stories may not be as popular.

Hick’s book is Programmed Inequality

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 22, 2020
The US Rejects A Peace Treaty (1919) w/ Christopher McKnight Nichols
21:12

It’s November 19th. On this day in 1919, the US Senate rejected the ratification of the Treaty of Versailles.

Jody and Niki are joined by Christopher McKnight Nichols of the University of Oregon to discuss why the US rejected the peace treaty and what it says about how the country saw its role in the world in the wake of World War I.

Christopher’s book is Promise and Peril: America at the Dawn of a Global Age

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 19, 2020
The Governator (2003)
14:53

It’s November 16th. On this day in 2003, Arnold Schwarzenegger was sworn in as Governor of California, after having won a recall election that ousted former Governor Gray Davis.

Jody and Niki discuss how Schwarzenegger came to power, California’s recall system, and the legacy of celebrity politicians crashing the GOP.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 17, 2020
The Occupy Encampment (2011)
23:18

It’s November 15th. On this day in 2011, the NYPD issued orders to clear the encampment at Zuccotti Park in lower manhattan, that had been the site of the Occupy Wall Street protests since the fall.

Jody and Niki discuss the roots of the encampment, and how Occupy helped introduce ideas of income inequality into the modern political discourse.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 15, 2020
The Vietnam Memorial Controversy (1982)
14:13

It’s November 12th. On this day in 1982, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial opened in Washington, DC.

Jody and Niki discuss the controversy over the memorial’s design, the additions over the years, and how we memorialize forever wars.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 12, 2020
The Obama Transition (2008)
16:11

It’s November 10th. On this day in 2008, President-Elect Obama stepped into the Oval Office for the first time for a meeting with President George W Bush.

Jody and Niki discuss the lessons from that 2008 transition, why the lame duck period is as long as it is, and what makes for a smooth transition, especially during a moment of crisis.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 10, 2020
GOP Latinos (1973) w/ Geraldo Cadava
23:42

It’s November 8th. On this day in 1973, a many by the name of Ben Fernandez testified during the Watergate hearings. Fernandez was a Nixon fundraiser but also a major organizer around Latinos within the Republican Party.

Jody and Niki are joined by Geraldo Cadava of Northwestern to discuss the history of conservative Latinos, and the narratives emerging around how Hispanics swung hard towards Donald Trump in the 2020 election.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 08, 2020
Special: What Moment Are You Thinking Of? (2020) w/ Kellie Carter Jackson
37:30

In the wake of the 2020 election, we have been thinking about and asking “What historical moment are you thinking about in this moment?” Jody and Niki are joined by Kellie Carter Jackson of Wellesley College to share their thoughts and read your emails.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 06, 2020
Quick Update, Question, Recommendation (2020)
02:23

Jody with a quick update on our post-election coverage. We’re recording on Friday morning with the question “What historical moment are you thinking about in this moment?” Email us thisdaypod@gmail.com or find a form at thisdaypod.com

In the meantime, if you’re looking for something to listen to, check out the latest episode of Radio Diaries, about the history of the concession speech. It’s great.

https://www.radiodiaries.org/how-to-lose-election/

Nov 05, 2020
When Black Voters Went Blue (1936) w/ Leah Wright Rigueur
25:27

It’s November 3rd. Election Day! On this day in 1936, FDR won his second term for president in a landslide. But it was the first election since the Civil War in which African-American voters voted for Democrats.

Jody and Niki are joined by Leah Wright Rigueur of Brandeis to discuss the shift, and how the election would preview the modern Democratic coalition, and the way in which Republicans would try to seize the Black vote back.

A quick note about our next show: We’ll be recording a special show for Thursday around the question “What historical moment are you thinking of in the aftermath of the election?” Email us or tweet us with your thoughts.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 03, 2020
Election Sunday: Election Night Info w/ Jad Abumrad
41:58

It’s November 1st. On this Sunday before election day, we mix it up a bit and look at number of moments from history that teach us about how election results have been conveyed, from the origins of “news flash” to the New York Times’ election-night needle.

Jody and Niki are joined by Jad Abumrad of WNYC’s Radiolab to discuss how the pressure to get results as quickly as possible has increased over the last century, and how that could complicate things for 2020’s very a-historical election.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Nov 01, 2020
Witches (1693) w/ Josh Gondelman
18:14

It’s October 29th. On this day in 1693, the Salem witch trials came to an end when a superior court decided it would no longer hear “spectral evidence.”

Jody and Niki are joined by comedian Josh Gondelman to discuss what the witch trials were really about, and what they teach us about conspiracy theories.

Josh’s podcast is “Make My Day.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Oct 29, 2020
Reagan's "Time for Choosing" (1964)
14:38

It’s October 27th. On this day in 1964, Ronald Reagan gave a televised speech that marked him as the leading voice of American conservatives.

Jody and Niki discuss the “Time for Choosing” speech, Reagan’s long political evolution, and how the remarks set the stage for his eventual presidency.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Oct 27, 2020
Election Sunday: Wellstone Plane Crash (2002)
19:36

It’s October 25th. On this day in 2002, Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone died in a plane crash, eleven days before the midterm election.

Jody and Niki discuss the impact of his death on the midterm election that year, and the political legacy Wellstone left behind.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Oct 25, 2020
Ike's Heart Attack (1955) w/ Will Hitchcock
19:10

It’s October 22nd. On this day in 1955, President Eisenhower was recovering from a serious heart attack the month before.

Jody and Niki are joined by William Hitchcock of UVA to discuss the incident and how a president’s inner circle handles the press and questions of succession when the Commander In Chief is sick.

Will Hitchcock’s new podcast is called “Democracy In Danger.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Oct 22, 2020
Are You, Or Have You Ever Been... (1947) w/ Will Hitchcock
23:29

It’s October 20th. On this day in 1947, the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) began hearings to root out communist sympathizers in Hollywood.

Jody and Niki are joined by William Hitchcock of UVA to discuss the long history of HUAC and how Congress has tried to define “un-American.”

Will Hitchcock’s new podcast is called “Democracy In Danger.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Oct 20, 2020
Election Sunday: Podium Protests (1968) w/ Joel Anderson
21:14

It’s October 18th. On this day in 1968, US Olympians Tommie Smith and John Carlos raised their fists in a Black power salute on the podium in Mexico City.

Jody and Niki are joined by Joel Anderson of Slate to discuss the backstory to the protests, the symbolism in their act, and what athletes risk when they take a political stand.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Oct 18, 2020
Million Man March (1995) w/ Joel Anderson
22:06

It’s October 15th. On this day in 1995 hundreds of thousands of Black Americans descended on Washington DC for the Million Man March.

Jody and Niki are joined by Joel Anderson of Slate to discuss the march, respectability politics, and the cultural moment that led to the march. Plus, why it’s so hard to estimate crowd sizes.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Oct 15, 2020
A Bull Moose Gets Shot (1912) w/ Alex Schmidt
17:37

It’s October 13th. On this day in 1912 (well, technically the 14th), Teddy Roosevelt is shot as he’s on his way to a speech in Milwaukee. He still gave the speech.

Jody and Niki are joined by Alex Schmidt to discuss the incident, the wild election of 1912, and violence in politics.

Alex’s podcast is called “Secretly Incredibly Fascinating” and is available wherever you get your podcasts.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Oct 13, 2020
Election Sunday: Anita Hill's Testimony (1991) w/ Farai Chideya
19:28

It’s October 11th. On this day in 1991, Anita Hill provided testimony during the confirmation hearings for Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court. Hill alleged that Thomas sexually harassed her while they were colleagues.

Jody and Niki are joined by Farai Chideya to discuss the hearings, the changing (and not changing) nature of the sexual harassment conversation, and Joe Biden’s role in the matter.

Farai’s new public radio show is called “Our Body Politic” and will be running on stations around the country this month, and is also available as a podcast.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Oct 11, 2020
Anthrax Letters (2001)
12:48

It’s October 8th. On this day in 2001, the FBI opened an investigation into a series of letters containing anthrax powder that were mailed to news organizations and politicians.

Jody and Niki discuss the case of the anthrax letters, why it remains somewhat unsolved, and why this story doesn’t get better remembered.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Oct 08, 2020
Fallout Shelters (1961)
14:55

It’s October 6th. On this day in 1961, President Kennedy penned a letter urging the country to prepare fallout shelters and take other steps in anticipation of nuclear warfare.

Jody and Niki discuss the fear that pervaded the era and what it teaches us about how we prepare for disasters.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Oct 06, 2020
Election Sunday: A Great Debate Zinger (1988) w/ Mike Pesca
24:48

It’s October 4th. On this day in 1988, Lloyd Bentsen delivered one of the most memorable debate lines of all time when he told his VP opponent Dan Quayle that he “was no Jack Kennedy.”

Jody and Niki are joined by Mike Pesca, the host of Slate’s “The Gist,” to discuss why Benson’s line worked so well and what it can teach us about other great debate moments.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

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Oct 04, 2020
REPOST -- The President Catches The Virus (1919)
09:37

With the news that President Trump has COVID, we are reposting our episode from early April about the time that President Wilson caught the Influenza virus in 1919.

We’ll be back with a new episode this Sunday.

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Oct 02, 2020
Shutdown (2013) w/ Steve Kornacki
22:37

It’s October 1st. On this day in 2013, the United States government shut down after the Congress was unable to agree to a new budget proposal, that had been saddled with provisions that would have defunded Obamacare.

Jody and Niki are joined by NBC/MSNBC correspondent Steve Kornacki to discuss the shutdown, how Ted Cruz used it to increase his profile, and why we may be suffering from shutdown fatigue.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Oct 01, 2020
Goodbye 538 (1970) w/ Steve Kornacki
19:42

It’s September 29th. On this day in 1970, the United States Senate came six votes shy of voting for an amendment that would have scrapped the Electoral College system in favor of a much more straightforward popular vote.

Jody and Niki are joined by NBC/MSNBC correspondent Steve Kornacki to discuss the context for that amendment push, the way the Electoral College has been politicized, and whether it will ever go away.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Sep 29, 2020
Election Sunday: Contract with America (1994) w/ Kristen Soltis Anderson
22:19

It’s September 27th. On this day in 1994, Republicans in the House of Representatives gathered on the steps of the Capitol to announce the “Contract with America,” a plank of ten policy points that they pledged to uphold if they seized back power in the upcoming midterm elections.

Jody and Niki are joined by pollster Kristen Soltis Anderson of Echelon Insights to discuss how the contract helped propel New Gingrich to stardom and brand the new Republican party.

Kristen’s book is “The Selfie Vote.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 27, 2020
The Republic of West Florida (1810) w/ Kristen Soltis Anderson
16:50

It’s September 24th. On this day in 1810, a band of rebels took control of a fort in Baton Rogue and shortly thereafter established “The Republic of West Florida,” which would last for… just under 50 days.

Jody and Niki are joined by pollster Kristen Soltis Anderson of Echelon Insights to discuss the breakaway republic, and the very weird history of the Gulf Coast region.

Kristen’s book is “The Selfie Vote.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 24, 2020
Dueling Lincoln (1842) w/ Alexis Coe
13:55

It’s September 22nd. On this day in 1842, Abe Lincoln almost duels, using swords, with a man named James Shields, but manages to get out of it.

Jody and Niki are joined by historian Alexis Coe to talk about why the duel isn’t part of the Lincoln mythology, and how scores were settled in the 1840s.

Alexis Coe’s book is called “You Never Forget Your First.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 22, 2020
Election Sunday: Carter's Lust (1976) w/ Alexis Coe
16:53

It’s September 20th. On this day in 1976, Democratic presidential candidate Jimmy Carter gave an interview to Playboy magazine in which he admitted that he has “lust in his heart” for women.

Jody and Niki are joined by historian Alexis Coe to talk about how the comments set off a firestorm, in several different directions, and how Carter was never able to fully balance his authentic self with his political life.

Alexis Coe’s book is called “You Never Forget Your First.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Sep 20, 2020
Khrushchev Comes to America (1959)
14:04

It’s September 17th. On this day in 1959, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev was in New York City as part of his goodwill tour of the United States.

Jody and Niki discuss the visit by Khrushchev, the protests against it, and the difference between political and cultural diplomacy.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 17, 2020
A Dead Candidate (1992)
16:58

It’s September 15th. On this day in 1992, the congressional district on Manhattan’s west side held its Democratic Primary. Incumbent Ted Weiss won handily. There was just one catch — Weiss had died of heart failure the day before.

Jody and Niki discuss the aftermath of Weiss’s death which saw Jerry Nadler assume the seat. They also look at the incumbency advantage in American politics, and why there has traditionally been so little turnover in Congress.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 15, 2020
Election Sunday: Dukakis on the Tank (1988) w/ Amy Walter
20:19

It’s September 13th. On this day in 1988, Democratic nominee Michael Dukakis baorded an M-1 tank in order to set up a photo op, ostensibly to make him look tough on defense. It backfired horribly.

Jody and Niki are joined by Amy Walter of the Cook Political Reporter and The Takeaway to discuss the tank photo, huge polling collapses, and the power of attack ads.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 13, 2020
Bank War (1833) w/ Jacob Goldstein
19:14

It’s September 10th. On this day in 1833, President Andrew Jackson announced that the U.S. government would no longer be keeping its money with the Second Bank of the United States.

Jody and Niki are joined by Jacob Goldstein, host of the “Planet Money” podcast, to discuss Jackson’s showdown with the country’s official bank, and how it fits into the long history of distrust in banking institutions in America.

Jacob’s new book is called “Money: The True Story of a Made Up Thing.” Buy it now!

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 10, 2020
The Obama Star Trek Theory (2004) w/ Ian Chillag
16:29

It’s September 6th. On this day Star Trek debuted. We are discussing Star Trek because of a convoluted theory that if the actress Jeri Ryan had never been cast on the series Star Trek: Voyager, Barack Obama would never have become president.

Jody and Niki are joined by Ian Chillag, host of Everything Is Alive, and fan of this convoluted theory. Ian walks us through it and we discuss how much luck plays in political trajectories.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 08, 2020
Election Sunday: The Stars and Stripes and Sports (1918) w/ Jason Concepcion
19:07

It’s September 6th. On this day in 1918, during the seventh inning stretch of a World Series game between the Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox, a band played the “Star Spangled Banner” for the first time at a major sporting event.

Jody and Niki are joined by Jason Concepcion of The Ringer to discuss why we now sing the national anthem at virtually every sporting event, and how sports, patriotism, and militarism have intertwined in the 100 years since.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 06, 2020
Recy and Rosa (1944) w/ Danielle McGuire
16:47

It’s September 3rd. On this day in 1944, a woman by the name of Recy Taylor was raped in Abbeville, Alabama.

Jody and Niki are joined by Danielle McGuire to discuss how Taylor’s case became one of the most notable cases in the early modern civil rights movement — and an important chapter in the political life of Rosa Parks.

Danielle McGuire’s book is “At the Dark End of the Street: Black Women, Race and Resistance -- A New History of the Civil Rights Movement from Rosa Parks to the Rise of Black Power.”

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 03, 2020
Tax The Rich (1862)
12:00

It’s September 1st. On this day in 1862, the Internal Revenue Act went into effect.

Jody and Niki discuss how the act codified many of the systems and precepts of our tax code — including the idea that the rich should be taxed at a higher rate than the poor; and that certain “vice” items should be subject to a sales tax.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Sep 01, 2020
Election Sunday: Carter and the Killer Rabbit (1979) w/ Sam Sanders
15:11

It’s August 30th. On this day in 1979, newspapers around the country reported on an encounter President Jimmy Carter had earlier that summer with a rabbit while fishing.

Jody and Niki are joined by Sam Sanders of NPR’s “It’s Been A Minute” to discuss how the Carter vs. Rabbit narrative spiraled out of control and turned into a genuine scandal.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 30, 2020
Obama's Tan Suit (2014) w/ Sam Sanders
14:04

It’s August 27th. On this day in 2014, President Barack Obama gave a press conference about Ukraine and ISIS and foreign policy — but much of the political chatter was about his choice of tan suit.

Jody and Niki are joined by Sam Sanders of NPR’s “It’s Been A Minute” to discuss the “scandal” and what it how it represented a shifting moment in political coverage.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 27, 2020
The 19th (1920) w/ Kellie Carter Jackson
13:44

It’s August 25th. On this day in 1920, Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby signed papers that ratified the 19th amendment, which stated that the right to vote would not be denied “on account of sex.”

Jody and Niki are joined by Kellie Carter Jackson of Wellesley to talk about the passage of the amendment, the intersectional nature of the suffrage movement, and why it wasn’t another 45 years until all women were really free to vote.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 25, 2020
Election Sunday: Fannie Lou Hamer vs Lyndon B Johnson (1964)
20:46

It’s August 23rd. On this day in 1964, Mississippi activist Fannie Lou Hamer gave a speech at the Democratic National Convention about her efforts to be recognized as part of the MS delegation. President Lyndon B Johnson, sensing that Hamer’s speech was getting attention, scheduled impromptu remarks.

Jody and Niki are joined by Kellie Carter Jackson of Wellesley to talk about Hamer’s remarks, legacy, and whether dramatic showdowns like this are even possible at modern conventions.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 23, 2020
Rockefeller Republicans (1974)
12:19

It’s August 20th. On this day in 1974, Gerald Ford announced Nelson Rockefeller of New York as his pick for Vice President.

Jody and Niki discuss how the pick of Rockefeller represented Ford’s attempt to find a moderate in the wake of the Watergate scandal and Nixon’s resignation — and whatever happened to the “Rockefeller Republican” wing of the GOP.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 20, 2020
The Dakota War and the Mankato Hanging (1862)
12:47

It’s August 18th. On this day in 1862, fighting broke out in southern Minnesota between Dakota Indians and the United States. Later in the year, 38 Dakota men would be hanged in Mankato, the largest mass execution in US history.

Jody and Niki discuss the conflict, how it fit into the context of the Civil War, and why it’s been largely written out of history.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 18, 2020
Election Sunday: Adlai and The Always-Rans (1952) w/ Harry Enten
22:02

It’s August 16th. On this day in 1956, Adlai Stevenson accepted the nomination for Democratic candidate for president. It was the second election in a row that he would go up against Eisenhower — and Stevenson was almost nominated again the following cycle.

Jody and Niki are joined by Harry Enten of CNN to talk about Stevenson and other figures who keep popping up in American politics.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 16, 2020
Ebola (2014) w/ Andy Slavitt
18:24

It’s August 13th. On this day in 2014, deaths from Ebola passed 1,000 in four West African nations. Over the summer and fall fears about Ebola would grow around the world and in the US.

Jody and Niki are joined by Andy Slavitt, former Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, to talk about the response then and what it says about the response now.

Andy is the host of the “In The Bubble” podcast. Check it out!

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 13, 2020
RBG Arrives (1993) w/ Dahlia Lithwick
17:52

It’s August 11th. On this day in 1993, Ruth Bader Ginsburg spent her first full day on the Supreme Court.

Jody and Niki are joined by Dahlia Lithwick of Slate to discuss Ginsburg’s nomination and how she went from measured incrementalist to feminist icon.

Be sure to listen to Dahlia’s special series on RBG in the Amicus podcast feed.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 11, 2020
Election Sunday: How Third Parties Happen (1848)
13:27

It’s August 9th. On this day in 1848, former President Martin Van Buren was nominated as the presidential nominee for the breakaway Free Soil Party. The party was short-lived, but influential, and partly responsible for the Republican party’s anti-slavery stance.

Jody and Niki discuss the FSP, MVB, and what conditions it takes for a viable third party to arise in American politics.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 09, 2020
The Case Of The Missing Judge (1930)
15:39

It’s August 6th. On this day in 1930, NY Judge Joseph Force Crater disappeared after getting dinner and heading to a Broadway show. He was never seen again, and his case has been a vacuum for conspiracy theories in the years since.

Jody and Niki discuss Crater’s disappearance, and what his life tells us about the Tammany Hall of corruption and graft in New York City.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Get in touch if you have any ideas for future topics, or just want to say hello. Our website is thisdaypod.com Follow us on social @thisdaypod

Aug 06, 2020
Braceros (1942)
11:53

It’s August 4th. On this day in 1942, the US started an immigration program for “braceros,” agricultural workers from Mexico who came to work on farms using temporary visas.

Jody and Niki discuss how the program forged ties between the US and Mexico, and what it teaches us about borders.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 04, 2020
Election Sunday: Reagan's Dog Whistle (1980)
23:42

It’s August 2nd. On this day in 1980, Ronald Reagan kicked off his 1980 presidential general election campaign with a speech at the Neshoba County Fair in MS. During the speech he used the phrase “states rights,” which was widely seen as a racial dog whistle.

Jody and Niki are joined by Kevin M Kruse of Princeton to discuss Reagan’s campaign, the significance of that kick-off speech, and the long running Southern Strategy.

Find a transcript of this episode at: https://tinyurl.com/esoterichistory

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Aug 02, 2020
How We Got "In God We Trust" (1956) w/ Kevin M Kruse
16:25

It’s July 30th. On this day in 1956, Congress approved a bill to adopt “In God We Trust” as the official motto of the United States, mandating that it appear on paper currency and elsewhere.

Jody and Niki are joined by Kevin M Kruse of Princeton to discuss why the 1950s was the era in which so much religion was codified into American political and society. Kevin’s book about the subject is “One Nation Under God.”

This Day In Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

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Jul 30, 2020
A Major Watergate Vote (1974) w/ Leon Neyfakh
15:21

It’s July 28th. On this day in 1974, the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee voted 27-11 to recommend the impeachment of Richard Nixon on counts of obstructing justice. The vote would be followed by several other counts and, a few weeks later, Nixon’s resignation.

Jody and Niki are joined by Leon Neyfakh, host of FIASCO and host of the first season of Slow Burn, all about the Watergate scandal.

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Jul 28, 2020
Election Sunday: Chappaquidick (1969)
16:04

It’s July 26th. On this day in 1969, Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy pled guilty to leaving the scene of the crime following a car accident on the island of Chappaquidick.

Jody and Niki are joined by Maeve Higgins of the New York Times and the podcast Mothers of Invention to discuss the legacy of the scandal, the Kennedy family’s impunity, and how Mary Jo Kopechne has been erased from the story.

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Jul 26, 2020
Why Wyoming (1890) w/ Maeve Higgins
12:50

It’s July 23rd. On this day in 1890, Wyoming celebrated its entry into the United States. And it was doing so as a state that granted women the right to vote.

Jody and Niki are joined by Maeve Higgins of the New York Times and the podcast Mothers of Invention to discuss the suffrage movement on the American frontier.

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Jul 23, 2020
Small Step For (A?) Man (1969) w/ Maeve Higgins
15:13

It’s July 21st. On this day in 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin rode the Apollo 11 lunar module down to the moon’s surface — while their pal Michael Collins stayed behind.

Jody and Niki are joined by Maeve Higgins of the New York Times and the podcast Mothers of Invention to discuss whether we have going-to-the-moon like projects anymore.

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Jul 21, 2020
Election Sunday: Convention Speeches (1980s)
24:50

It’s July 19th. In our first special Sunday show, Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss some notable convention speeches from the 1980s, and what makes for a good speech in the room and on TV. We’re doing special Sunday shows from now through Election Day.

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Jul 19, 2020
Riots Sweep NYC (1863)
15:28

It’s July 16th. On this day in 1863, riots are raging in New York City. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss how the unrest shifted from Civil War protest to a race riot, and what it says about the North’s role in the conflict.

Reminder! We are adding a third episode each week, starting this Sunday. Be sure to tune in, and spread the word.

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Jul 16, 2020
The Pandemic We Forget (1968) w/ Leon Neyfakh
16:56

It’s July 14th. On this day in 1968, reports of a new strain of influenza. The “Hong Kong Flu” would spread worldwide and kill upwards of a million people, including 50-100,00 in the United States.

Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Leon Neyfakh, host of FIASCO and original host of Slow Burn, to discuss why we don’t remember this pandemic as part of the story of 1968.

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Jul 14, 2020
VP Gore (1992) w/ John Dickerson
17:15

It’s July 9th. On this day in 1992, Bill Clinton announced Al Gore as his selection to be his Vice Presidential running mate.

Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by John Dickerson of 60 Minutes to discuss why Clinton went with another young Southerner, and whether VP selections even matter.

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Jul 09, 2020
Welcome Alaska (1958) w/ John Dickerson
13:09

It’s July 7th. On this day in 1958, President Eisenhower signed the Alaska Statehood Act, bringing Alaska on as the 49th state.

Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by John Dickerson of 60 Minutes to discuss how states get added, and whether we think we will be adding a new one in this country anytime soon. John’s new book is “The Hardest Job In The Room.”

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Jul 07, 2020
The Man Who Didn't Sign The Declaration (1776) w/ John Dickerson
13:02

It’s July 2nd. Today, the story of John Dickinson, who attended the Continental Congress, was witness to the drafting of the Declaration of Independence, but abstained from voting for or signing the document.

Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by John Dickerson of 60 Minutes to discuss the story of the “forgotten founder.” John’s new book is “The Hardest Job In The Room.”

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Jul 02, 2020
Newspaper Strike! (1945) w/ Jane Coaston
10:57

It’s June 30th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Jane Coaston of Vox to discuss the NYC newspaper strike of 1945. There were eight daily newspapers serving millions and millions each day. When delivery workers went on strike, it revealed a lot about the media environment, labor, and more.

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Jun 30, 2020
The Great Reunion (1913) w/ Jane Coaston
11:47

It’s June 25th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Jane Coaston of Vox to discuss “The Great Reunion” of 1913. 50 years after the Battle of Gettysburg, Civil War veterans returned to swap stories and shape the story of how America remembers that conflict.

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Jun 25, 2020
Resurrection City (1968) w/ Jane Coaston
13:26

It’s June 23rd. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Jane Coaston of Vox to discuss “Resurrection City,” an encampment that occupied the National Mall in Washington DC for six weeks in the summer of 1968.

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Jun 23, 2020
Juneteenth (1865)
11:09

It’s June 18th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the history of Juneteenth — which is tomorrow, June 19th! It started as a Texas commemoration of the end of slavery, and has slowly spread throughout the country, and appears to be on its way to becoming an official holiday.

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Jun 18, 2020
Getting The New Deal Done (1933)
14:20

It’s June 16th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the passage of the first raft of legislation that would come to be known as The New Deal. History remembers the entire era as one of sweeping reform, but there was traditional politics at play in its passage, too.

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Jun 16, 2020
One Of Those Days (1963) w/ Josh Levin
16:56

It’s June 11th. We’re breaking format a bit today. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Slate’s Josh Levin to talk about a day in 1963 where four massive events all happened together. Alabama Governor George Wallace tried to block two black students from entering a building at the University of Alabama. In response, President Kennedy federalized the Alabama national guard. That same night, civil rights activist Medgar Evers was assassinated. And in Vietnam, Buddhist monk Thích Quảng Đức set himself on fire in a Saigon street.

Josh Levin is the host of the latest season of the Slate podcast “Slow Burn.” Listen now!

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Jun 11, 2020
David Duke The Democrat (1988)
15:54

It’s June 9th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer are joined by Slate’s Josh Levin to talk about neo-nazi David Duke, who ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1988, and continued to seek office throughout the 80s and 90s. Duke is the subject of the latest season of the excellent podcast “Slow Burn,” hosted by Levin.

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Jun 09, 2020
Shirley Shows Up (1972)
13:05

It’s June 4th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the California democratic debate of 1972, which features Shirley Chisholm — the first woman to appear on a presidential debate stage. She was also the first African-American woman elected to Congress.

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Jun 04, 2020
The Steel Strike Showdown (1952)
14:09

It’s June 2nd. Before the show, some words about the protests and violence over the weekend. Then, Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss a massive steel strike in 1952, and the way it pitted President Truman, unions, and the Supreme Court against each other.

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Jun 02, 2020
Ain't I A Woman (1851) w/ Akilah Hughes
14:02

It’s May 28th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Akilah Hughes (What A Day podcast) discuss Sojourner Truth’s famous “Ain’t I a Woman” speech. It tells us a lot about how myths are made, and historical figures are flattened over time.

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May 28, 2020
Hands Across America (1986)
12:43

It’s May 26th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Akilah Hughes (What A Day podcast) discuss “Hands Across America,” the charity event that tried to get Americans to line up from coast to coast in order to raise awareness about homelessness and hunger.

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May 26, 2020
Treason! (1807)
12:20

It’s May 21st. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Joanne Freeman (Backstory Radio) discuss the treason trial of Aaron Burr. It pitted Burr against Thomas Jefferson, for whom he had served as VP, and posed lots of questions about what our young democracy would look like.

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May 21, 2020
The Caning Of Sumner (1856)
12:45

It’s May 19th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Joanne Freeman (Backstory) discuss one of the more notorious incidents in U.S. political history — when Senator Charles Sumner was severely beaten with a cane by a political opponent inside the Congressional chamber.

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May 19, 2020
Ron Paul Bows Out (2012)
13:25

It’s May 14th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Harry Enten of CNN discuss the career of Ron Paul. He ran in several Republican primaries, capturing a part of the electorate that would come to play a big role in future elections on both sides of the aisle.

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May 14, 2020
The Killer Ds (2003)
13:00

It’s May 12th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Harry Enten of CNN discuss the incident where over 50 Texas legislators fled across the boarder to Oklahoma, to avoid having to vote on a redistricting proposal.

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May 12, 2020
Coya Come Home (1958)
12:39

It’s May 7th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Harry Enten of CNN discuss the “Coya Come Home” letter — a public letter written by the husband of MN representative Coya Knutson, demanding that she leave office and return to domestic life.

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May 07, 2020
The Forgotten Crash (1893)
11:51

It’s May 5th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the crash of 1893. It was the result of a rapidly changing economy, heavy debt, and slow-footed governmental response. And it ushered in a new era in American politics.

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May 05, 2020
Bernie Jumps In (2015)
12:01

It’s April 30th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the moment Bernie Sanders entered the 2016 Democratic primary. He was relatively unknown, but the issues he was championing were already gaining momentum.

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Apr 30, 2020
The East Coast Dims Out (1942)
11:05

It’s April 28th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer talk about the “dim outs” of 1942, when businesses and residents along the east coast were asked to turn off their lights to protect from enemy submarines. It’s a moment of collective effort during WWII that has lots of lessons for today.

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Apr 28, 2020
Howard Stern For Governor (1994)
11:30

It’s April 23rd. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Alexis Coe (You Never Forget Your First) discuss when shock-jock Howard Stern secured the Libertarian Party nomination for New York Governor. His platform included just four items.

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Apr 23, 2020
Adams Doesn't Want To Be VP (1789)
10:26

It’s April 21st. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Alexis Coe (You Never Forget Your First) discuss America’s first Vice President, John Adams. He was inaugurated nine days before George Washington, and was complaining about playing second fiddle from day one.

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Apr 21, 2020
Letter from a Birmingham Jail (1963)
10:11

It’s April 16th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Jamelle Bouie of the New York Times discuss Martin Luther King’s Letter from a Birmingham Jail, in which he rejected calls to go slow and appease moderates in his civil rights efforts.

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Apr 16, 2020
The Lincoln Coup (1865)
09:52

It’s April 14th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Jamelle Bouie of the New York Times discuss the assasination of Abraham Lincoln, and what parts of the story history tends not to consider.

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Apr 14, 2020
The Amendment That Changed The Senate (1913)
09:56

It’s April 9th. Jody Avirgan, Nicole Hemmer, and special guest Jamelle Bouie of the New York Times discuss the passage of the 17th amendment. It changed the way that senators are elected, and the fundamental mechanics of our democracy.

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Apr 09, 2020
Obama's "Bitter Clinger" Comments (2008)
11:03

It’s April 7th. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the scandal that erupted after candidate Barack Obama made comments at a fundraiser ahead of the Pennsylvania primary. His remarks about “bitter” voters who “cling to guns and religion,” and the controversy that erupted, in many ways previewed the politics of the next decade.

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Apr 07, 2020
Wilson Gets The Flu (1919)
08:40

It’s April 2nd. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss the Influenza pandemic of 1918-1919. In the spring of 1919, President Wilson got sick on his way to Paris for talks to bring a close to World War I.

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Apr 02, 2020
LBJ Isn't Running (1968)
09:54

It’s March 31st. Jody Avirgan and Nicole Hemmer discuss President Johnson’s surprise announcement that he isn’t running for re-election, and how politics can be upended in a tumultuous year like 1968.

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Mar 31, 2020
Introduction: This Day In Esoteric Political History
02:50

This Day In Esoteric Political History is hosted by Jody Avirgan, with historian Nicole Hemmer of Columbia. Our researcher and producer is Jacob Feldman.

Find us online at thisdaypod.com. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram @thisdaypod

This Day in Esoteric Political History is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX.

Mar 23, 2020