Fighting the McCarthyism of the Democrats

Senator Joseph McCarthy (R-WI) made accusations in 1950 about fifty-seven State Department employees being communists.  He was then attacked by President Harry Truman and his Justice Department, Senator Millard Tydings (D-MD), chairman of the Subcommittee on the Investigation of Loyalty of State Department Employees, and the MSM, and was subsequently censured by the Senate.  He became the embodiment of "McCarthyism," a pejorative term coined by "His liberal critics in academe and the mainstream media, who denied there was Communist subversion ...."

Because the Democrats had no effective reply to McCarthy's charges, they engaged in personal destruction, they smeared and demonized McCarthy.  By the way, the VENONA intercepts "... proved that in the 1950's Senator Joseph McCarthy was absolutely right about the extensive Soviet penetration of the U.S. government in all the most sensitive sections and its danger to America." So, the ultimate irony is that the first victim of McCarthyism was…Joe McCarthy.

That was then.  What's going on in the present world?  It seems that "McCarthyism" is still being practiced.

In 2012, Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), in the Senate, practiced "McCarthyism" when he said that GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney "hasn't paid taxes for ten years."  Reid's source? Someone had told him.  That "someone" was alleged to be Jon Huntsman, Sr., father of the former Utah governor.  Huntsman, Sr. said that the attribution was untrue, that it was "supermarket tabloid trash," and that "I have no way of knowing if Mitt Romney did or did not pay his taxes."

Not put off by Huntsman's 2013 statement, Reid, last week, doubled down on his accusation.  When asked about that statement by CNN's Dana Bash, Reid said, "I don't think the burden [of proof] should be on me.  The burden should be on him.  He's the one I've alleged has not paid any taxes."  When asked by Bash if his statement was "McCarthyite," Reid shrugged, smiled, and said, "Well, they can call it whatever they want.  Romney didn't win, did he?"

What Reid, using his "ends-justify-the-means" reasoning, said that it didn't matter whether what he said about Romney was true or not, that all that mattered was that Romney didn't win.  That reasoning by Reid is the definition of "McCarthyism."

Romney wasn't/isn't the only target of "McCarthyism" from Reid.  About the Koch brothers, Reid, in the Senate, questioned their patriotism: "These two brothers ... are about as un-American as anyone that I can imagine."  To garner Reid's ire, they donated money for political ads.  Liberal donors George Soros and the Steyer brothers did the same, but their patriotism was not questioned by Reid.

Reid alleged that General David Petraeus, at the time the senior ground commander of U.S. forces fighting in Iraq, was a liar who "has made a number of statements over the years that have not proven to be factual" when Petraeus brought proof to Congress that the surge in Iraq was beginning to work by late 2007.

William Magwood, Democrat appointee to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, opposed Reid on the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste disposal site controversy. In response, Reid called Magwood a "first-class rat," a "treacherous, miserable liar," a "s*** stirrer," and "one of the most unethical, prevaricating, incompetent people I've ever dealt with." Reid offered no substantiation for his remarks.

Reid has made some vicious and sometimes profane personal insults.  Reid said, during the 2008 presidential campaign, "I can't stand John McCain," but gave no reason for the statement.  When George W. Bush was president, Reid said, "President Bush is a liar."  Again, no substantiation for the remarks were offered.  He just made them.

Is a pattern of "McCarthyism" from Reid emerging here?

As Victor Davis Hansen, in April 2014 wrote:

We should ask Senate majority leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) the same question once posed to Senator Joseph McCarthy by U.S. Army head-counsel Robert N. Welch: "Have you no sense of decency, sir?  At long last, have you left no sense of decency?"

So how does Reid’s reckless career continue with the Senate leader avoiding the sort of congressional censure that finally did in McCarthy?  Why is there is no progressive muckraker to take on Reid the way that Edward R. Murrow once exposed McCarthy?

For the Left, Reid’s utility as an attack dog … outweighs the downside of his crude bombast.

His lurid, unsubstantiated charges against Romney were helpful in demonizing Romney as a rich grandee.  His untruths about Petraeus helped shore up Democrats' anti-war credentials during the 2008 campaign.  Environmentalists did not object to his character assassination of nuclear-power advocate Magwood.

Reid is not alone.  Other Democrats are practicing "McCarthyism."  President Barack Hussein Obama has vigorously used of the Espionage Act to prosecute whistleblowers he wants silenced.  The purpose of an Espionage Act prosecution is to smear and ruin the whistleblower "personally, professionally and financially."  Only ten people in American history have been charged with espionage for leaking classified information, seven of them under Obama. 

Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), the ranking member on the House Natural Resources Committee, embarked in February on a campaign to smear the reputations of climate researchers with whose results he disagrees.

So, is what's good for the goose good for the gander?  Can I (or anyone) be as despicable as Reid and the Democrats, do what he and they did/do?  Here goes:

Prominent Democrats, such as Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden, Chuck Schumer, Dick Durbin, Bernie Sanders, Al Gore, Rahm Emanuel, Barbara Boxer, Diane Feinstein, Claire McCaskill, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Nancy Pelosi, all took substantial bribes from Iran in exchange for their silence about the recent nuclear agreement.  Republicans, such as Senator Tom Cotton (R-AK) were not so fortunate.

My source: I read it on the Internet.  Sure, the charge is outlandish, but my source is just as reliable as Reid's.  And, as Reid said, "I don't think the burden should be on me.  The burden should be on [them]." 

Practicing "McCarthyism" is easy for those without a conscience.  Anybody who is as low and indecent as Reid and Democrats can do it!  My charge is false, but the MSM reported Reid's and Democrat charges as if they were true.  No verification required.  Therefore "McCarthyism" lives.

John Fund wrote:

McCarthyism - the reckless hurling of accusations at adversaries so as to destroy their reputations - has been considered one of the lowest forms of political behavior ...[.]

So "McCarthyism" is "the lowest forms of political behavior."   But with it continuously going on, with the vast majority of the MSM in the tank for the Democrats and repeating Democrat lies, and with the low-information voters believing anything they hear or read, what choices but to embrace "McCarthyism" remain for conservatives?   Obama's election and reelection illustrates that "taking the high road" doesn't work. 

Bottom line: Do conservatives want to embrace "McCarthyism," to win at all costs?  Probably not.    Conservatives, being decent and honorable people, just can't do it and face themselves.  But there is nothing indecent or dishonorable about being very vocal and pointing out when Democrats do it.

Dr. Warren Beatty (not the liberal actor) earned a Ph.D. in quantitative management and statistics from Florida State University.  Now retired, he was a (very conservative) professor who specialized in using statistics to assist/support decision-making. Dr. Beatty is a veteran who served in the U.S. Army.  He blogs at