Sunday, October 10, 2021

A man named Spiro

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(My new American Thinker post)

Maybe it's another urban legend but I heard it many years ago.

On this day in 1973, The Supreme Court was hearing some oral arguments, the Reds were playing the Mets in the National League Championship Series and the game was interrupted with the flash that Vice President Agnew had resigned.  The legend is that a clerk passed a note to one of the justices that went sort of like this:  Pete Rose crashed into Buddy Harrelson at second and Agnew resigned.  We don't know if that actually happened but it makes for a great story.

Spiro Agnew was elected governor of Maryland in the mid-1960s.   In 1968, Richard Nixon shocked the world by selecting him as VP on the GOP ticket.  "Spiro who?" was the talk of the land.   A few months later  they won a very close election but Governor Agnew did not deliver Maryland that year.   

Back then, many of my school friends started playing games saying that Spiro rhymed with Silvio.  It doesn't but VP Agnew and I do have strange names.   After all, how many people do you know named Silvio or Spiro?   There weren't many where I was hanging around.

During Nixon's first term, VP Agnew spoke around the country against antiwar demonstrators and the media.   He became very popular with "the Silent Majority" as President Nixon referred to people who worked, paid taxes, and loved their country.

The Nixon-Agnew ticket was reelected in 1972.  Nevertheless, the Nixon-Agnew relationship was never close but that's not unusual for a president and vice-president.  Agnew did deliver Maryland in 1972 but 49 states voted for President Nixon that year.

In 1973, we began to read stories of corruption.  First, the Justice Department uncovered widespread evidence of political corruption during Agnew's tenure as governor.  Secondly, there were stories of bribes during his tenure as vice president.

It all happened very quickly.  Within days, he resigned and was eventually replaced by VP Gerald Ford in December.  Later, he wrote a book presenting his defense but I don't think that it sold well.

Mr. Agnew wrote another book about a vice president a few years later titled The Canfield Decision.  It probably paid a few of his legal bills.  It was one of those books that I wanted to read but something more interesting came up,

It’s amazing how quickly he rose and fell, from an unknown Governor of Maryland to VP to disgrace.  Agnew died in 1996.

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Happy # 75 Gene Tenace

We say happy birthday to Gene Tenace who was born in Pennsylvania on this day in 1946.

Tenace broke with the A's in 1969.   He was primarily a catcher, played some first base and was one of the many talented young players who turned the A's into a power house in the early 1970's.  

Overall, Tenace hit .241, 201 HR & 674 RBI in 1,555 games.    Most of those numbers came with the A's:  121 HR.     His best season was 1975:  29 HR & 87 RBI.

Tenace was great in the 1972 World Series:   MVP, 4 HR & 9 RBI.    We remember Gene Tenace, a member of one of the best teams in major league history or the 1972-74 Oakland A's.

P.S.  You can listen to my show (Canto Talk).  If you like our posts, click send, and drop a dime here.




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