History's Trainwrecks

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049 - The Most Dangerous Man In America, Conclusion

Season 1, Ep. 49

I’m trying to figure out who REALLY killed Huey Long.


Don’t worry. Your favorite history podcast hasn’t suddenly turned into a true crime show. Neither has this one.


There are few viable ways to stop a dictator. Julius Caesar and a disturbingly large number of Roman emperors were assassinated in order to end their reigns. Benito Mussolini’s execution and subsequent “corpse dragged through the streets of Milan and hung upside down at a gas station” party was, I suppose, a modern expression of the ancient Roman tradition. Some well-timed deaths, like those of Genghis Khan, Tamerlane, Attila the Hun, and Adolf Hitler, put an end to bloody autocrats. Once they have amassed ultimate power, legitimate means of removing them disappear. Even tangential methods, or what I like to call paper traps—tax fraud and other types of accounting or regulatory crimes—didn’t hold out much hope and took way too long to suit anyone. 


And so it came to pass in the mid-1930’s in Louisiana, people started to talk openly about killing Huey Long.


Huey was killed by an assassin's bullet. His last words were "God, don't let me die. I have so much to do."


He died on September 10, 1935, but his political machine controlled Louisiana politics until the 1960's. His son served in his father's Senate seat from 1948 to 1987. 


His legacy in Louisiana lives on. 


 



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