Bill Moyers Sees a Ghost
Bill Moyers saw a ghost: "The specter stood there, watching the screen, a snickering smile on his stubbled face. Sure enough, it was the ghost of Senator Joseph McCarthy, the Wisconsin farm boy who grew up to become one of the most contemptible thugs in American politics."
I almost wish all the rest of us could see only the ghost of Bill Moyers, but he is still with us, this time lashing out to belittle Congressman Allen West of Florida. West offended Moyers by daring to say, "I believe there are 78 to 81 members of the Democrat Party who are members of the Communist Party. It's called the Congressional Progressive Caucus."
This observation so enraged Moyers that he hurled the most vicious epithet in the repertoire of the left: he compared West to McCarthy, who, according to Moyers, "seized on fear and ignorance to announce his discovery of a conspiracy within: Communist subversives who had infiltrated the government."
But Moyers commits a fatal mistake by continuing to maintain that McCarthy had no evidence for his claim, the key element that the left brandishes to discredit McCarthy in the historical record. Moyers is hoisted all the more severely with his own petard in light of his framing his attacks on McCarthy and Rep. West with references to George Orwell's 1984 and the author's warning to beware, in a paraphrase Moyers uses, "the amnesia that sets in when we flush events down the memory hole, leaving us at the mercy of only what we know today."
Actually, it is Moyers who is flushing events down the memory hole to bolster his opinions. In the 1930s and '40s, the federal government was indeed infiltrated from top to bottom by Soviet-directed operatives in far greater numbers than McCarthy estimated. We know this due to the revelations in 1995 by NSA and CIA of the Venona files, over 500,000 messages sent in code from Moscow to their agents-in-place in the United States.
Yet Moyers lays out the narrative that McCarthy's famous list was a fabrication. Moyers and his elitist, leftist propagandists routinely pounce on McCarthy's inconsistencies, berating him for his inexactness about the actual number of Soviet agents working in the government, as if the lack of an completely accurate number discredited the overarching reality. McCarthy landed on the number 105, which, it turned out, was close to the number of federal employees investigated for communist leanings before McCarthy came on the scene.
The problem for Moyers and his cohorts is that Venona puts the number at between 600 and 900 -- and growing. But it takes time to decrypt the messages and potentially expose more Soviet agents. As of today, only a small percentage of the cables have been decoded and translated.
According to intelligence expert John Earl Haynes, Ph.D., Modern Political Historian, Manuscript Division Library of Congress:
Altogether, NSA broke and has released about 3,300 cables, mostly America/Moscow. I understand there are hundreds of other fragmentary broken messages, but so fragmentary that nothing coherent can be read. For example, Venona broke in whole or in part an outstanding 49% of the 1944 messages between the KGB New York office and its Moscow headquarters, but only 15% of the 1943 messages, and a mere 1.8% of the 1942 messages (only 23 out of nearly 1,300). Only 1.5% of the 1945 traffic between the KGB Washington office and Moscow was broken, and even less in 1946. Venona read half of the Naval GRU's Washington traffic in 1943, but not a single message for any other year. So that is about 3,300 out of hundreds of thousands of Soviet cables, likely more than a half million messages in the 42-46 period. Add even more to the grand total if you throw in non-American traffic.
Obviously, over the years ahead, more and more names will be added, but Moyers paints over the existence of Venona altogether -- as does most of the left -- because the evidence shatters the myths they hold so dear: that the Rosenbergs and Alger Hiss were innocent, that the Communist Party US (CPUS) was not controlled and funded by Moscow, and that anyone who does not hold these opinions is a McCarthyite and unworthy to offer a contrary opinion.
Moyers is an unrepentant Great-Society liberal spawned by fellow Texan Lyndon Johnson in the mid-1960s, when LBJ sought to solve America's problems with sweeping utopian legislation that continues to break the federal budget. Beyond saddling us with the burden of social welfare programs, the Great Society ushered in nettlesome problems in the metrics of the political process, including the Voting Rights Act, which continues to muddle elections in Southern states while the act itself has become a relic with no relevance in today's election environment.
Bill Moyers parlayed his position under LBJ into a lucrative and influential career as an author and public television host. His NOW With Bill Moyers and Bill Moyers Journal peddled the leftist party line, whereupon he was able to slide over to network television, where he continued to apply his softspoken style to present leftist clichés to a mass audience. If he is anything, he is consistent: always there to represent the non-factual, idealistic, and unrealistic opinions of the radical utopians.
Though soft-spoken, in print he exceeds Rush Limbaugh in hyperbole. He warns Allen West: "So beware, Congressman West, beware: in the flammable pool of toxic paranoia that passes these days as patriotism, a single careless match can light an inferno. You would serve your country well to withdraw your remarks and apologize for them."
Yet Moyers, who walks right by valid historic facts such as Venona to make up his own historic narrative, is the one who should withdraw his remarks over the past 50 years and apologize for them.