"In which John Green teaches you about the economic malaise that beset the United States in the 1970s. A sort of perfect storm of events, it combined the continuing decline of America's manufacturing base and the oil shocks of 1973 and 1979, and brought about an stagnant economy, paired with high inflation. Economists with a flair for neologisms and portamenteau words called this "stagflation," and it made people miserable. Two presidential administrations were scuttled at least in part by these economic woes; both Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter are considered failed presidents for many reasons, but largely because of an inability to improve the economy. (hint: In reality, no one person can materially change something as big as the world economy, even if they are president, but one person sure can make a handy scapegoat!) So, by and large, the 70s were a pretty terrible time in America economically, but at least the decade gave us Mr. Green."
The Great Deflation of the 1970s (as it is more commonly known) really lasted that entire decade with the economy taking a big hit in 1973 thanks to the energy crisis of that year, because of the 1973 Middle East Oil Embargo and it was actually President Richard Nixon who was going, through some really tough political issues that year for well-known reasons. (Anyone old enough to remember Watergate) Who made a big push to move America to energy independence and had almost no success with that.
But the energy crisis of the early 1970s crisis followed by the 1974-75 recession, followed by a mild recovery of 1976 that had weak economic and job growth. The economy taking a big hit in 1978 with rising interest and inflation rates. Followed by the recession of 1979-80. The American economy was in transition in the 1970s because the Vietnam War was finally ending which is a good thing.
But the defense budget gets cut in that decade with defense industry losing money as a result. Taxes going up thanks to the Great Society of the 1960s. America becoming more dependent on foreign oil from an unstable area of the world. The Middle East pumping less oil making our energy prices and cost of living with the high interest rates and inflation, very expensive in this country.