Republican McCarthyism Then and Now


Sen. Ted Cruz as Sen. joe McCarthy

Sen. Ted Cruz as Sen. Joe McCarthy

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                         Welcome back MY Dear Shoevians to The Other Shoe. . Today I share ‘Republican Party McCarthyism – Then and Now’  about the current state of our Republican Party. Over the past decade we have seen a shift in tactics and rhetoric used by elements of the Republican Party. Looking back, over the shoulder of our national political dialogue, we can see that this shift actually started with (R) Rep. Newt Gingrich of Georgia and his ‘Contract with America’. But, I get ahead of myself and my story line.

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First; a word of warning and an explanation. My Dear Shoevians, in the real world I have many; family, friends, and acquaintances that are Republicans. It is not now, nor has it every been, my intention to write and publish works that are derogatory of the Republican Party for the mere sake of being derogatory. I have genuine and legitimate concerns about the direction and motivations for the most outspoken members of the current ideation of the Republican Party.

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Republican Attack on Democratic Party

Republican Sen. Joe McCarthy’s Attack on Democratic Party

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Next, I know that a great many of you, My Dear Shoevians, are not Americans. I know (I read my Google Analytics) I have a ton of Shoevians from all around the globe. For that reason, I will be explaining a lot of American history that, we Americans, have no need for explanation. However, it works for me because I want to build a timeline for all of you, My Dear Shoevians. Our story starts on February 9th, 1950 in the city of Wheeling, West Virginia. Yes, right there about 15% of my American audience just got where I am going and who I am about to write… about.  

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THEN:

        The date is February 9th, 1950. The place is Wheeling, West Virginia and the person is one Senator Joseph R. McCarthy. It was on this very day that an (unfortunate and hurtful) ‘American Movement’ was born. America could still, clearly, see the Second World War in our rear-view mirrors. We saw it in our injured soldiers, returned home with less than they left. We saw it in the elected President, Ike Eisenhower, sitting in the White House’s Oval Office. We saw it in the ‘Ration Stickers’ that still appeared in many car windows, and we saw it on the front doors of the families that had lost sons in Europe and the Pacific. The war was still very much a part of our day-to-day lives. Senator McCarthy was up for reelection, and he had (what he thought was) a brilliant idea for reelection. Here are the first shots fired in this war against the ‘Other’ party in America’s Two-Party system:

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        “I have here in my hand a list of 205 . . . a list of names that were made known to the Secretary of State as being members of the Communist Party and who nevertheless are still working and shaping policy in the State Department. . . .”[1]

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Sen. Joseph McCarthy List 205 Names

Sen. Joseph McCarthy List 205 Names

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My Dear Shoevians, at the time of this speech our President was (Democrat) Harry S. Truman and Senator McCarthy was a Republican. The Cabinet position, of Secretary of State, and head of the State Department was a Democrat appointee. As with most administrations (then and now) high positions (Cabinet level and directly below) are generally given to party loyalists. With these 28 words, Senator Joseph McCarthy started a war on the Democratic Party and gave real life of the (upcoming) ‘Red Scare’. These are the 28 words:

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“I have here in my hand a list of 205 . . . a list of names that were made known to the Secretary of State as being members of the Communist Party…”[2]

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Sen. Joseph McCarthy List 205 Names

Sen. Joseph McCarthy List 205 Names

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This speech is, now, commonly known as the “Enemies Within” speech. With these few words Senator Joseph McCarthy assured his reelection, and started a hysteria that would sweep our nation, and sweep thousands of good and genuine Americans; out of jobs, into disrepute and into ruin. To this day, now in 2015 some sixty-five years later, the “list of 205 names” has never been seen. The list was never submitted to Congress or any government agency. Nobody but Senator Joseph McCarthy ever saw the “205 names” on this historic list.

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Nevertheless, Senator McCarthy had given ample fuel to the single greatest Witch Hunt of the twentieth century. America was already on a path of self-destruction with the House Committee on Un-American Activities. This committee was made a standing committee in 1945, Senator McCarthy was using this communist paranoia to catapult his reelection in 1950. Suddenly every American was examining their neighbors, and looking for the “communists all around us”.

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 Sen. Joseph McCarthy State Dept INFESTED with Communists

Sen. Joseph McCarthy State Dept INFESTED with Communists

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This ‘Red Scare’ came to Hollywood and attacked many of our national entertainment icons. Few Americans, today, realize the scope of the harm and hurt that this man, and his paranoid delusions, did to our great Republic. The image, below, captures just how heinous this disease became and who was damaged by this Witch Hunt.

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Lucy Ball As Red

Lucy Ball As Red

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Yes Lucille Ball, of ‘I Love Lucy’, was attacked by the baseless and paranoid delusions. I could go on for pages and pages… talk about The Hollywood Ten’[3] who took a courageous stand against this terrible Witch Hunt. However, that is not the point of today’s article. Today I want to make all ofyou, My Dear Shoevians, familiar with ‘McCarthyism’ the disease and the real and substantive damage this disease did to our Republic. Then, I want to take a few moments to point out… that this disease did not die back in 195e, they way we were lead to believe. That this disease has remained alive within one political party here in America.

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Free The Hollywood Ten

Free The Hollywood Ten

(Free The Hollywood Ten)

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McCarthyism did reach its peak, and Senator Joseph McCarthy did meet his end. As you, My Dear Shoevians, can clearly see from this headline in the New York Times December 3rd, 1954.

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END of McCarthyism 12-1954

END of McCarthyism 12-1954

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Now:

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My Dear Shoevians the return of McCarthyism, to America, came with Congressman (and short-time Speaker) Newt Gingrich. In 1994 (R) Rep. Newt Gingrich started a Republican initiate called ‘The Contract with America”. Republicans sought to end the forty year alienation of Republicans from the Majority in the House of Representatives. However, my concern is not with the contract, but rather with the language Newt Gingrich brought to Republicans in 1996.

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In a GOPAC memo Newt Gingrich defined the Language: A Key Mechanism of Control[4] In this memo Newt Gingrich sought to change the way Republicans spoke about: government, governance and the Democratic Party! Here is an excerpt that, directly, pertains to the Democratic Party:

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  • bosses
  • bureaucracy
  • cheat
  • coercion
  • “compassion” is not enough
  • destroy
  • destructive
  • devour
  • disgrace
  • endanger
  • excuses
  • failure (fail)
  •  hypocrisy
  • ideological
  • impose
  • incompetent
  • insecure
  • insensitive
  • intolerant
  • liberal
  • lie
  • radical
  • red tape
  • self-serving
  • selfish
  • sensationalists
  • shallow
  • they/them
  • threaten
  • traitors
  • unionized
  • urgent (cy)
  • waste
  • welfare[5]

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Here is an excerpt from the memo circulated in 1996:

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As you know, one of the key points in the GOPAC tapes is that “language matters.” In the video “We are a Majority,” Language is listed as a key mechanism of control used by a majority party, along with Agenda, Rules, Attitude and Learning. As the tapes have been used in training sessions across the country and mailed to candidates we have heard a plaintive plea: “I wish I could speak like Newt.”

That takes years of practice. But, we believe that you could have a significant impact on your campaign and the way you communicate if we help a little. That is why we have created this list of words and phrases.

This list is prepared so that you might have a directory of words to use in writing literature and mail, in preparing speeches, and in producing electronic media. The words and phrases are powerful. Read them. Memorize as many as possible. And remember that like any tool, these words will not help if they are not used.

While the list could be the size of the latest “College Edition” dictionary, we have attempted to keep it small enough to be readily useful yet large enough to be broadly functional. The list is divided into two sections: Optimistic Positive Governing words and phrases to help describe your vision for the future of your community (your message) and Contrasting words to help you clearly define the policies and record of your opponent and the Democratic party.

Please let us know if you have any other suggestions or additions. We would also like to know how you use the list. Call us at GOPAC or write with your suggestions and comments. We may include them in the next tape mailing so that others can benefit from your knowledge and experience.”[6]

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From this day forward members of the “Democratic Party” became “liberals”! Other Republican representatives, both in the House and Senate, sought to “speak like Newt’! In addition, My Dear Shoevians, it was in 1996 that the Fox ‘News’ network premiered on cable. Thus began the concerted effort to repaint the Democratic Party as; “communists”, “socialists”, “liberals” and the arch enemy of the American people. Sound familiar? Just four short years before the turn of the century, and five before the terrorist attack on America, Republicans had given up on politics played ‘by the rules’ and sought to breath life back into McCarthyism!

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From this day forward the goal was not the “fair and equal access and control of the levers of government for the betterment of the nation and its citizens”. No, now the goal was to put the Republican Party in power and keep it there! The demagoguery of the Democratic Party had started, and today it is in full swing! I have showed you how it all started, let me now wrap up this article by showing you how far this disease has spread.

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At a town hall, in Jensen Beach Florida, Republican Allen West lambasted Congressional Democrats as:

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 “”It’s a good question. I believe there’s about 78 to 81 members of the Democrat Party who are members of the Communist Party. … It’s called the Congressional Progressive Caucus.”[7]

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Granted, the Town Hall was highly biased, as we can tell by me sharing the question Rep. West answered:

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“”What percentage of the American legislature do you think are card-carrying Marxists or International Socialist?”

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A concerted effort to paint Congressional Democrats as “members of the Communist Party…”This is how it starts! FYI the “Congressional Progressive Caucus” is made up of only Congressional members of the Democratic Party.

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IN 1950 Joseph McCarthy pointed to the elitists within America and the American government that were the problem and the source of Communism in government.

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“. It has not been the less fortunate, or members of minority groups who have been traitorous to this Nation, but rather those who have had all the benefits that the wealthiest Nation on earth has had to offer . . . the finest homes, the finest college education and the finest jobs in government we can give.”[8]

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And Now:

“Republican smear campaigns often make use of this “elites vs. real Americans” theme. Here’s Curt Levey of the Committee for Justice, speaking to senators about then-Judge Sonia Sotomayor’s nomination to the Supreme Court:

“Remember the values of the regular folks who sent you to Washington. Don’t vote for a Supreme Court nominee whose values are closer to those of the intellectual elite than to those of your constituents.”[9]

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For all of us old enough to remember the 2000 election, we can clearly remember how the Republican Party regularly painted (then) Candidate Sen. John Kerry as an elitist and not someone like you’. Even though the, then, Republican candidate, George W. Bush, came from a EXTREMELY Wealthy family! A family that could trace its wealth all the way back to the turn of the 20th century! However, as we can now clearly see the Republicans are devoted to their rhetoric in a way that Democrats just cannot accomplish.

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Now, let me bring this puppy full circle. Today we, Americans, are bearing witness to a rebirth ofMcCarthyism in our politics and our governance. While claiming that they are of the ‘common people’ they slash subsistence benefits to the ‘least among us’ and route billions in ‘tax breaks’ to the top; 10%, 1% and 0.1%. All the while sticking to the tired and true rhetoric about; Democrats and the Democrat(ic) Party. Now, I have brought you the material, showed you the parallels. It is up to us, My Dear Shoevians, to spread these words. To ‘Share’ this understanding with everyone!

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The only way we can hope to stop the rape of our nation’s treasury, the funneling of funds from programs meant to help ‘the least among us’ to the Wealthiest-10%-1% and 0.1%! We now havethe information. Now, all we need is the WILL to make change!

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As always I am deeply flattered that you come here and read my work. If you have enjoyed your stay and what you have read?  All I ask is that you ‘Like’ and ‘Share’ my work via your social media outlets. Have a great weekend!

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P.S. – In the past, I have tried (desperately) to share my concerns but found more luck in offending than explaining. Thereby forcing away those I had wished (desired) to warn. Over the past year I have worked very hard to change/improve my methods so that I might write/publish my genuine concerns, and that they be heard and not dismissed. My Dear Shoevians, I was; born, raised and reared ‘Deep in the Heart of Texas’. Yes, one would not have necessarily guessed that fact from just reading my works but it is the truth. Where I have left ‘The Great State of Texas’ many of my family, close friends and loved ones are still living and working in Texas.

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It is these very Texans that I wish to reach with my thoughts and words. This article is the culmination of that effort, manifest with new tactics and tools. Here is my words of warning: The current ideation of the Republican Party is NOT what you think. History is repeating itself, and it is a part of history America is NOT proud… of. With this article series I hope to explain those words of warning and in so doing, empower those I love and cherish. Much like trying to warn a dear tharn (a la “Watership Down’) by the headlights of an oncoming car, I set out on this task today.

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“Rhetoric is, like, the ‘sugar coating’ of politics. And, right now, there are a lot of ‘sugar junkies’ cluttering up our national political dialogue.” – Daniel Hanning.

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“Now you have a clear understanding of the situation we, as Americans, face. Which leaves U.S.with a choice, My Dear American Shoevians. We can either; choose to stick our heads in the and sand an ignore the situation (or in some cases, wallow in  the self-aggrandizing rhetoric), or we can have the courage (of our nation’s citizens sixty years ago) and stand-up against this harmful divisive narrative. Stand-up by turning off these ‘New-Age-McCarthyists’, take back control over our national political dialogue and narrative, and show this ilk what America really stands for!”

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Adieu!

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Thank you!

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Danny Hanning Writer, Editor, Research Staff and Publisher at The Other Shoe

Danny Hanning Writer, Editor, Research Staff and Publisher at The Other Shoe

© 2010 – 2015 Hanning Web Wurx and The Other Shoe

 

 

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About Daniel Hanning
I am a; writer, editor and publisher. I write, most often, articles about our space program, fun videos andpolitical works. My most recent additions are; A Week In Review, Sunday Funnies and The Adventures of Nadia. Along with The Mars Report and Lost in Space. ENJOY!

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