Monday, January 8, 2018

Bill Minutaglio

Bill Minutaglio is the author, along with Steven L. Davis, of The Most Dangerous Man In America: Timothy Leary, Richard Nixon And The Hunt For The Fugitive King Of LSD. From the transcript of his interview with NPR's Ari Shapiro:

SHAPIRO: Timothy Leary is best known for promoting psychedelic drugs. He was called the High Priest of LSD. His famous catch phrase was turn on, tune in, drop out. So why did Nixon view him as the most dangerous man in America?

MINUTAGLIO: You know, a lot of people had called Nixon that, so maybe he was doing some diversionary politics there.


MINUTAGLIO: (Laughter) Nixon needed a poster child, someone to vilify in his burgeoning war on drugs. But it really was a matter of misdirection. The war in Vietnam was still raging, and there was a lot of violence, aggressive activism on the streets of the country. And we stumbled across doing some research a tape where Nixon at the White House with many of his infamous colleagues, a lot of the Watergate-era folks, had gathered around and said, you know what?

To salvage your approval ratings, to misdirect attention away from this flagging war in Vietnam, a stagnant economy, your swooning poll numbers, we need to find a villain, a guy in a black hat. And why not choose Timothy Leary? He's sort of the godfather of the countercultural revolution. And we can make him...[read on]
--Marshal Zeringue