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A few days ago I posted an angry response to the idea that "even Jimmy carter...." set some kind of minimum standard for conduct as President.  While it is enough to show that Governor R-Money was wrong, I think it is even more important to show the context of the times.  Fact is, compared to what was going on in 1979, President Obama has it easy.  That is not to say that he has not had a ton of challenges, but few Presidents other than Lincoln or Roosevelt have faced a year like President Carter did in 1979.

Before going into the craziness that happened in 1979 I think its important to remember what we did not have back then.

There was no internet as we know it but the idea was spawned in 1979 with the creation of the Internet Configuration Control Board.  Ethernet was still a year away and TCP/IP didnt join us until 1982.

1979 saw the first cell network in Tokyo Japan but like TCP/IP, it would take until 1982 for the first US "1G" service.  It wasnt until 1993 that someone sent a text to someone else.

There were only three TV networks plus PBS.  Maybe that is a plus since President Carter never had to deal with Fox.

The real difference this created was a long "flash to bang" time for all the events that unfolded over the year.  News "happened" at 6PM when Walter Cronkite and David Brinkley told it to you, the next day if you lived in a city with a big enough newspaper or a week plus later when Time magazine arrived.  If you wanted to know more, too bad....unless you were the President of the United States and had the entire Intelligence Community to answer questions for you.  On to 1979.

1979 Started with a bang from the flash of December 1978 when Vietnam invaded Cambodia.  It is quite possible that Vietnam conducted the first military intervention to stop genocide.

January 1st officially marked the start of full diplomatic relations between the US and Communist China - one of President Carters many achievements.  

By the 7th the Vietnameese Army had taken Phnom Penh and Pol Pot/Khmer Rouge went into hiding along the Thai border.

On the 16th Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi of Iran flees Iran for Egypt.

In February  things start to move in Iran -

1 Feb - Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini returns to Tehran.
3 Feb – Khomeini creates the Council of the Islamic Revolution.
7 Feb - Supporters of Khomeini take over law enforcement, courts and government administration
10 Feb – The Iranian army mutinies.
11 Feb – Khomeini seizes power in Iran.

February 14 - Muslim extremists kidnap the American ambassador to Afghanistan, Adolph Dubs, who is later killed during a gunfight between his kidnappers and police.

February 17 – The People's Republic of China invades northern Vietnam, launching the Sino-Vietnamese War.

February 27 – The annual Mardi Gras celebration in New Orleans, Louisiana is canceled due to a strike called by the New Orleans Police Department.

 - Two months into the year and things are already crazy.  In less than a month decades of US foreign policy in one of the most critical region of the world is tossed aside.  Entire careers were built on relationships in Iran and now there was nothing but uncertainty.  A US Ambassador has been killed and a major cultural celebration cancelled.  And our newest friend (China) has invaded our most recent enemy (Vietnam) in response to said enemy (Vietnam) invading another enemy (Cambodia) and ejection the enemy leader (Pol Pot) who we would then kind of friend.

Things are quiet most of March with "just" one coup on March 13 in Grenada.  Maurice Bishop would later become a trophy in the Reagan Library.  

On the 26th Egyptian President Anwar El Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin got together and signed a Peace Treaty that still holds today.  All it did was end the near constant state of war that had existed since 1948.

A good month and time to relax.....until on 28 March Three Mile Island happens.  

April starts with one of those things that the President knew but we didn't - the Sverdlovsk Anthrax leak.  In the pre-internet days Presidents had tons to worry about that the public never knew.

The rest of April was pretty slow until the President was a bunny.  

 - Another two months down.  The huge achievement of the Camp David is tempered by the nation being scared to death of nuclear power, a possible challenge to our oldest foreign policy doctrine (Monroe Doctrine) in Grenada and the knowledge that the Soviets had made a big booboo with deadly bio weapons.  

The President got through most of May without incident until the 25th when the nation, already scared of its major source for electric power, became scared to fly when American Airlines Flight 191 crashed killing 272 people and prompting the entire DC-10 fleet to be grounded for over a month.  My mom has refused to fly in a DC-10 ever since.

On the 2nd of June, Pope John Paul the II arrived in Poland setting off a chain of events that would contribute to the fall of the Iron Curtain.  Of note John Paul the II had only been elevated to the Holy See in October of 1978 after the death of John Paul I.  The end of John Paul I's 33 day Papacy is still in dispute.

On day later we had the prequel to the Gull Oil Spill - Ixtoc I.

On June 18th President Carter and Leonid Brezhnev signed SALT II (Strategic Arms Limitation Talks).  if you need details, ask Vice President Biden.  Although never ratified, it was "enforced" by both side until President Reagan tossed it aside.

On June 25th The Red Army Faction/Baader-Meinhof Gang nearly killed US General     Alexander Haig, Supreme Allied Commander of NATO.

 - So just half way through the year and the world is a mess, diplomats are being killed/generals almost killed and the nation had experienced it's worst nuclear, air travel and, until 2010, oil spill accidents.  This would test even the best of men.  Toss in an attack bunny, a UN sponsored Disco, and the death of John Wayne and its amazing President Carter got any sleep.

Tomorrow, the last 6 months of 1979.

Originally posted to ksuwildkat on Wed May 02, 2012 at 02:03 PM PDT.

Also republished by History for Kossacks and Community Spotlight.

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Comment Preferences

  •  And demand for polyester kept oil prices high. nt (12+ / 0-)

    If Obama doesn't deserve credit for getting Bin Laden because he didn't pull the trigger, Bin Laden doesn't deserve the blame for 9-11 because he didn't fly the planes.

    by Bush Bites on Wed May 02, 2012 at 02:28:34 PM PDT

  •  I graduated high school in June 1979 (28+ / 0-)

    I remember that year very well.

    I have always remembered President Carter as a man bearing an unbearable burden.

    He was a truth-teller as President, especially in that final year, and his campaign opponent was the teflon-coated Ron Reagan, whose campaign cooked up that Arms For Hostages deal with Iran and Nicaragua...

    guess which guy the US electorate chose to believe?

    * * *
    I like paying taxes...with them, I buy Civilization
    -- SCOTUS Justice O.W. Holmes Jr.
    * * *
    "A Better World is Possible"
    -- #Occupy

    by Angie in WA State on Wed May 02, 2012 at 02:34:28 PM PDT

  •  Wow, That Next Month Contains a Very Dramatic (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ignacio Magaloni, Dave925

    and prophetic event. Looking forward to part deux.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed May 02, 2012 at 03:08:21 PM PDT

  •  The Man Created More Jobs in 1 Term Than 3 Terms (8+ / 0-)

    combined of Bushes. No wonder enraged voters threw him out of office in strong part because of his bad economy.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed May 02, 2012 at 03:09:14 PM PDT

  •  Biggest problem facing Jimmy Carter: (22+ / 0-)

    People consistently fail to realize just how very weak the U.S. military was when Jimmy Carter was President. After a horrific decade in Vietnam, the U.S. armed services were riddled with drug addiction, insubordination, abysmal levels of training and experience, and a thoroughly hollowed-out officer corps. Even worse, the massive cost of the war had led all the armed services to severely underfund maintenance and spare parts. As a result, reliability/availability rates were simply appalling. Many squadrons were cannabilizing half their planes to keep the other half flying. Training and skill levels were dreadful across the armed services. And all of this was at a time when the Soviet Union was arming at a furious pace. The fiasco at Desert One was not an aberration; given the dreadful state of the U.S. military (something Carter was well aware of), it was almost predictable.

    After 20 years in which the United States has been so militarily preeminent, most Americans are completely ignorant of how very weak Jimmy Carter's military hand was when the Soviets invaded Afghanistan. Moreover, in a final act of cruel irony, Carter funded all the research and development and the much larger training budgets that permitted Ronald Reagan to take credit for rebuilding the U.S. military.

    Stealth fighters? Abrams Tanks? F-15 fighters? Yeah, Jimmy Carter started or approved all those programs. Reagan just took the victory lap.

  •  Thanks for the diary! (11+ / 0-)

    Too many folks here only know and care about one POTUS - the current one.

    If we're all Democrats, it's important to learn and respect the former Dem presidents who have accomplished so much.

    I often cringe when I see so many constantly criticize and ridicule former Dem presidents while singing the praises of criminals like Reagan.

    Remember, Obama will be an ex-POTUS some day, too.  

    "We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty." Edward R. Murrow

    by Betty Pinson on Wed May 02, 2012 at 03:52:50 PM PDT

  •  I graduated high school in '79! (6+ / 0-)

    Also my porthole Pinto is a '79....

    "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

    by Stude Dude on Wed May 02, 2012 at 05:36:10 PM PDT

  •  I disagree that Lincoln and FDR had it worse. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude, New Rule

    The best thing to do is to take over at the bottom: there is no where to go but up. When the shit hits the fan in your last year, you are toast.

    Ask Hoover.

  •  Go Wildcats. I was at KSU '67-72 and that was.... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dave925, eztempo, New Rule

    an equally interesting and scary ride.  At the time, I did not see how this country could survive intact, but it did.  Can we do it again?   One very important goal of the right is to neutralize places like K-State where raw kids from western Kansas can have their eyes opened and their moral precepts intelligently formed and validated.

    •  My first vehicle, a 1967 Chevy Van (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      was purchased from a KSU grad in 1979, who obtained it from the KSU Medical School.  I bought it from him, through his father (who was my father's coworker) for $100.  We towed it home and after about $20 in tune-up parts, I continued to drive it for about 10 years.  While I purchased it when I was only 15, it was the major form of transportation for myself and high school friends (and was even decorated for several Homecoming parades).

      -8.88, -7.77 Social Security as is will be solvent until 2037, and the measures required to extend solvency beyond that are minor. -- Joe Conanson

      by wordene on Wed May 02, 2012 at 07:25:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I currently live about two miles from (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    michealallison, Dave925

    the AA191 impact site, and my father-in-law was a first-responder, of sorts... he worked for, what was then, Illinois Bell (now AT&T) and was there for communications assistance with one of the first cell phones installed in his car.

    I remember 1979 fairly well as I was near to finishing up my high school life at that time.  I remember thinking at that time that President Carter was getting a raw deal in the media, as I was unaware at that time that the media had a rather right-wing bias.

    -8.88, -7.77 Social Security as is will be solvent until 2037, and the measures required to extend solvency beyond that are minor. -- Joe Conanson

    by wordene on Wed May 02, 2012 at 07:16:14 PM PDT

    •  I saw that plane come down` (0+ / 0-)

      Well, I saw it coming down. I worked on the 5th floor in an office in Rosemont back then.

      I remember the sounds of sirens, dozens of emergency vehicles streaming in from every direction.

      And a friend of mine started selling those early car phones about that time. We ordered pizza while hanging out at Beck Lake!

      Where ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace. - Dalai Lama

      by kimoconnor on Fri May 04, 2012 at 04:29:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  My first community organizer knocked on my door (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    and changed my life.

    The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike from sleeping under bridges. ~ Anatole France

    by ActivistGuy on Wed May 02, 2012 at 07:29:29 PM PDT

  •  Quite a year 1979 (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sawgrass727, FG, Dave925

    A minor related item worthy of mention.

    I don't know the exact date but in response to the Vietnamese ousting the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia, the US imposed a punishing trade embargo on Viet Nam which would remain in place until the mid-90's during Bill Clinton's presidency.

    “Humankind can not bear very much reality.” - T.S. Eliot

    by truong son traveler on Wed May 02, 2012 at 07:58:38 PM PDT

  •  My first child was born in 1979 - (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    michealallison, Dave925, Bernie68

    In September, so I was pregnant for most of the year.  I remember the presidential campaign very well.  Reagan was selling a vision of America that was as fake as a movie set.  I remember watching his inauguration on TV, holding my infant son, and hoping this presidency wouldn't be as bad as I thought it would be.  It wasn't; it was worse - but it took many years for me to realize just how much worse.

    Fox News is to the truth as a flaming bag of dog shit is to a packed lunch. --MinistryOfTruth

    by snazzzybird on Wed May 02, 2012 at 08:24:08 PM PDT

  •  Much I have forgotten (0+ / 0-)

    I was in college at the time--and working a full-time job--and my awareness of current events was not keen.   I knew much of this chronology, but not all of it, and not nearly as deeply.  Plus, as you aptly point out, the Internet  did not exist-; I only got my news from the daily newspaper --when I had time to read it, and an occasional perusal of Time magazine in the school library.

    But here's the real deal.  As busy as I was, I do remember that it was a very difficult time in our country.  

    Meanwhile, Mitt was 32 years old at the time.  He joined Bain in 1977, and became a vice president of the firm in 1978.  His job REQUIRED  him to be aware of public issues and events.   He has absolutely NO excuse to be so stupid about Jimmy Carter.   It's one thing to be dumb by nature, but Romney is despicable for being willing to say and do anything regardless of truth.

  •  1979 was my senior year in high school. (6+ / 0-)

    I got a scholarship to the school of my dreams, but had to fight my parents for them to let me go there, as it would have required my living in NYC in a rented room (there were no dorms at this school), and even though we lived near the city, to them it was a hell hole and no way did they want their daughter there.  

    Three Mile Island was terrifying.  Traumatic.  

    In 1980 during the campaign Reagan was so cruel to Carter, making him seem "weak".  When Carter had had so much shit exploding around the world and stuff literally melting down at home at the same time.

    My soundtrack for 1979:  disco.  Elvis Costello.  The Cars.  Blondie.  Talking Heads.  B-52s.  Listening to it now it all seems so innocent, even though it was a composite soundtrack for things falling apart globally.

    That's one more thing to add to my long list of small problems. --my son, age 10

    by concernedamerican on Wed May 02, 2012 at 09:32:41 PM PDT

    •  I was in NYC for a couple of hours (0+ / 0-)

      in 1968 and it was such a hellhole that my next trip there "on purpose" didn't happen until 2005. Then I found it to be delightful. I was there a week ago and even though we used the subway/airtrain systems to get between JFK and Manhattan, still found the whole experience delightful. Times have changed in a very good way.

      Moderation in most things.

      by billmosby on Thu May 03, 2012 at 04:56:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  And don't forget, I was born (0+ / 0-)

    The world has pretty much gotten worse ever since. At least for middle class families in America. I'm probably to blame somehow.

    "What is essential is invisible to the eye."

    by greywolfe359 on Wed May 02, 2012 at 10:50:08 PM PDT

  •  We shouldn't forget the Primary fight (4+ / 0-)

    Having a tough ass primary against Kennedy didn't help that much.

    Honestly most people bring up Carter really don't know much about his Presidency other than he lost big to Regan and the oil crisis.

    •  Yeah, but not until spring of 1980 (0+ / 0-)

      I remember that pretty well.  I was in my 2nd semester of engineering school and had a class w/ projects due faithfully every Wednesday.  Keeping in touch w/ the "just-in-time" theories of production then coming into vogue, I was up late working on them every Tuesday night w/ the TV on--thus getting a fresh update on the day's primary elections.

      "Push the button, Max!" Jack Lemmon as Professor Fate, The Great Race

      by bartcopfan on Thu May 03, 2012 at 09:42:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Reagan was also (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FindingMyVoice, Dave925, eztempo

    out there with Lee Atwater and the beginnings of Rove
    along with what would soon become the War on Drugs,
    Just say No became a campaign slogan.  I remember I liked Jimmy Carter and recently saw a write up In the AJC that said America owed him an apology due to him possibly being one of the best presidents ever.

    The other morning on Morning Joe old repug Joe even took up for him because Mika was very upset as her Daddy was foreign policy advisor during that time under Carter and a brilliant man and she was miffed really bad at Mittens.  Joe kept saying The Carter Administration had fine security council and she had her arms crossed and looking though she was ready to explode,  She overtalked someone on the show saying President Carter was a good president and Mitt Romney was out of bounds.  Interesting pug show.

    We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! Be part of helping us build a veteran community online. United Veterans of America

    by Vetwife on Wed May 02, 2012 at 11:46:13 PM PDT

  •  "Only Nixon could go to China" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    billmosby, michealallison

    an old Vulcan proverb...  ;)

    Carter's beginning diplomatic relations with China was not really a big deal at the time.. Nixon's normalization of relations, I think, is remembered more as the high point in Sino-American relations.

    Carter is more remembered for the Camp David Accords.. I can still remember seeing Sadat and Begin and Carter standing together.

    •  For anyone who cares about Israel, Camp David (0+ / 0-)

      was a diplomatic triumph. The Egyptian threat to Isreal's southern frontier was removed for a third of a century.

      I hope it holds, but I"m not optimistic.

      "Mistress of the Topaz" is now available in paperback! Link here:

      by Kimball Cross on Thu May 03, 2012 at 11:20:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  neither am I optimistic.. (0+ / 0-)

        The Muslim Brotherhood, while not radical, seems to be getting the bulk of votes in the recent elections.  Unfortunately, just behind them are pretty radical Islamist political parties.  This does not bode well for a secular Egyptian government.

        And now, the presidential elections are in danger with the military "disqualifying" half the candidates!

        It makes you wonder if the military will end up giving up their power.

        And we hear nothing of all this on US news.

  •  I bought a '79 Rx-7 in about March of '79 (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JohnnySacks, michealallison

    And enjoyed it so much I pretty much missed most of the next 20 years of politics. Or did I miss it because twins happened to us in '82? One or the other....

    Moderation in most things.

    by billmosby on Thu May 03, 2012 at 04:52:00 AM PDT

    •  Sweeeet Car! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dave925, billmosby, New Rule

      That rotary engine was a screamer!  Imports were more of a novelty then until gas prices skyrocketed.   We all had domestic tanks until one of us got a hold of an Opel, I think it was a Kadet.   Holy crap that thing could handle!  I remember blowing down Storrow Drive in Boston at a rate that would be instant death in an Impala.

      Anyhow.. back to my original thought...
      During those years the US auto industry was dealt a crippling hammer blow from its complete and utter ineptitude at producing anything which compared to Japanese fuel efficiency, and also anything which could compete on dependability either.  My dad ended up with a Vega wagon (a decision he regretted) for a short time before ditching it and paying a ransom for a Mazda GLC wagon.

      •  Of course the rotaries (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        ate gas pretty voraciously. As an engine it was neither efficient nor clean inherently because of that huge combustion chamber surface area to volume ratio. But the engine was small and lightweight for its power. Had to take care to keep it under 4000 rpm though or it would run through all of its oil in about a half hour. As I discovered during one enthusiastic hill climb one time. I ran through half of the oil in 15 minutes using 3rd gear for the climb and curves.

        It got to be too inconvenient to maintain a couple of years ago so I sold it; due to gas tank rust it had been out of service for several years before that, although I got that fixed and drove it again for a year before selling it. At least I have the "last drive" video to remember it by.

        Moderation in most things.

        by billmosby on Thu May 03, 2012 at 10:29:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  HA! I also drove one of these back then (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      In fact took it from Chicago up through Ontario and Quebec and back down through Maine during the fall. It was beautiful.

      Where ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace. - Dalai Lama

      by kimoconnor on Fri May 04, 2012 at 04:31:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I had mine on the Pacific Coast Hwy (0+ / 0-)

        once. Other than that, it always lived at an altitude of about 4500 feet, which left it just a tad less exciting than down where the real air is. Still plenty of fun, though. Idaho Falls (its home for 25 years) has easy access to a lot of 2-lane mountain roads. I found it would do a dandy drift turn on black ice, as long as you kept the speed down to about 10 mph or so. Oh, and warned the passenger beforehand, lol.

        Moderation in most things.

        by billmosby on Fri May 04, 2012 at 04:54:50 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  People forget (4+ / 0-)

    President Carter also cancelled the B-1 bomber program because it was already technologically out of date.  The B-1 can only be flown in a combat zone after the surface-to-air missiles have been knocked out.  Reagan's big money California defense contractor buddies got him to bring it back to the waste of billions of dollars.

    He appointed Paul Volker as Fed Chairman who tamed inflation.  Like another poster wrote, Reagan took the victory lap.

    And President Carter was a fiscal conservative.  Reagan learned to use deficit spending to boost the economy.  Deficits only matter to Republicans when they aren't in power.

    •  Reagan had to reconfigure the B-1 as the B-1B (0+ / 0-)

      with variable-sweep wings, which made it possible for it to use more airfields than other bombers. Most of Ronald Reagan's possible were wrong-headed and disastrous, but the B1-B, affectionately known to its crews as "the Bone," makes up 1/3 of our bomber fleet and isn't going away any time soon.

      "Mistress of the Topaz" is now available in paperback! Link here:

      by Kimball Cross on Thu May 03, 2012 at 11:26:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Admittedly a tough year (0+ / 0-)

    But I don't think Carter handled things all that well, especially with respect to Iran. He wasn't the disaster that the GOP likes to portray him  as, but he was not a very effective president.

    •  Carter truly was an "outsider", and it showed. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      michealallison, New Rule

      After the corruption and dysfunction of Watergate, Carter was elected as an actual, true-to-life "outsider" to the D.C. culture.  Upon reaching the White House with a staff that wasn't brought over from old Capital Hill and K Street stables, Carter was pilloried by the established and entrenched power players in both Parties that resented him for everything from not serving alcohol at State dinners to instituting human rights as a core foreign policy objective.

      Carter's was an administration that has served as an object lesson to incoming Presidents ever since:  you don't fuck with D.C.

      •  Agreed. His "Georgia Mafia" (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        including Bert Lance, who I'm sure we'll hear about in the 2nd installment, was taken as an affront to what would rightly become known as "The Village".

        All those complaints about Clinton and his handlers were pretty much (except for the sex--though even Jimmy had to live down the "lust[ed] in my heart" confessions) echoes previous complaints about Carter.

        "Push the button, Max!" Jack Lemmon as Professor Fate, The Great Race

        by bartcopfan on Thu May 03, 2012 at 09:47:53 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Two important items about .... (0+ / 0-)

    the Carter Administration that I remember. I don't know if it was 1979 or one of the other years. Interest rates were very high -- in the range of 18%. And inflation was the issue in the news. I don't know why they were that high -- I wasn't paying attention -- but I know Carter got blamed.

    But more importantly, President Carter said that the energy issue should be treated as a 'moral equivalent to war'..... or something to that effect. And people laughed at him for that. And didn't he put solar panels on the White House -- which Reagan promptly tore off when he moved in?

    Those were tough years for most people I recall -- I'm sure they were tough years in the White House.

  •  OPEC (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    New Rule

    While OPEC was established in the 60's, it wasn't until the 70's that many of the oil producing countries had nationalized a sufficient share of their domestic oil production to exert common control over the worldwide market price.

    The Yom Kippur War of 1973 is what sparked the Arab oil embargo, which caused oil prices to quadruple.  The revolution in Iran caused another major price spike in oil.

    The trucking industry, the airline industry, railroads...all were strictly regulated with price controls in place.  Even the price of a gallon of milk was fixed, though I can't remember when the fair trade pricing on dairy products ended.

    A lot of those price controls go back to Nixon's Whip Inflation Now program.  They didn't control inflation.

    Carter, though many don't remember, is the one who appointed Paul Volker as Fed Chairman.  It was Volker's stewardship of the economy in that capacity, mostly after Carter's election loss, that set the economic ship of state on an even keel.

    Oregon:'s cold. But it's a damp cold.

    by Keith930 on Thu May 03, 2012 at 10:48:00 AM PDT

  •  The 1979 stagflation, with unemployment (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    creeping up and huge gasoline prices, combined with the Iran hostage crisis to fatally undermine Carter's presidency. It's uncertain that any president in a similar situation could survive.

    "Mistress of the Topaz" is now available in paperback! Link here:

    by Kimball Cross on Thu May 03, 2012 at 11:11:43 AM PDT

  •  In 1979 I hit the bottom of a depression I'd been (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    in for most of the decade. The night of September 30, I almost ended my own life. I'm very glad I didn't, for a lot of reasons.

    I remember 1979 for a lot of reasons, but that one looms very large.

    "Mistress of the Topaz" is now available in paperback! Link here:

    by Kimball Cross on Thu May 03, 2012 at 11:31:11 AM PDT

  •  Carter pissed off a lot of liberals by instituting (0+ / 0-)

    draft registration in 1979, as a response to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.

    "Mistress of the Topaz" is now available in paperback! Link here:

    by Kimball Cross on Thu May 03, 2012 at 11:32:04 AM PDT

  •  Suggestion to diarist (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    New Rule

    In part II, perhaps you can mention what the economic picture was in the European Union at the time.  Was the inflation and stagnation here in the US isolated, or was it a more or less global malady?  I know Belgium, for example, was sent into recession by both the 73 and 79 oil spikes, as well as the collapse of its steel industry in the face of global competition.  I think many countries were wrestling with the same issues that Carter was at the same time.

    Americans then, and now, seem to view events in a if nothing else, or nothing similar, is occurring elsewhere.

    Oregon:'s cold. But it's a damp cold.

    by Keith930 on Thu May 03, 2012 at 11:34:09 AM PDT

  •  In 1979, Mr. escapee worked two full-time jobs (0+ / 0-)

    so that I could go back to school and finish my degree.  

    It was a busy, busy year.

    "Republicans are poor losers and worse winners." - My grandmother, sometime in the early 1960s

    by escapee on Thu May 03, 2012 at 12:31:08 PM PDT

  •  Meh, that shit happens every year (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    and was totally compensated by SOME OF THE BEST MUSIC EVER.

    The top 100 songs were pure gold - from top to bottom - every single one of them!

  •  i was in med school at the time (0+ / 0-)

    while i was always aware of what was going on i really had no time to think about it until much later.  i'm surprised we all came through the '70s as well as we did.  

  •  It's good to review history. (0+ / 0-)

    Too many of us  Americans are amnesiac or ignorant

    "..The political class cannot solve the problems it created. " - Jay Rosen

    by New Rule on Thu May 03, 2012 at 03:14:39 PM PDT

  •  I have some memories as well (0+ / 0-)

    This was when stagflation was strangling the economy and oil was up. Interest rates were  higher than now - and going much, much higher. In many ways the economy had less of a heartbeat then than it does now (2012 that is, not 2008/9).

    the future begins

    by zozie on Thu May 03, 2012 at 03:37:11 PM PDT

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