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Joseph McCarthy - right or wrong?

Was Joseph McCarthy right about Soviet infiltration and communists in the US federal government?

  • Yes

    Votes: 10 19.6%
  • No

    Votes: 41 80.4%

  • Total voters
    51
  • This poll will close: .

j brown's body

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Nope. While the Soviets certainly did engage in espionage, it was nowhere near the level of success McCarthy claimed.

McCarthy came rather late to the game. The government had already been purging alleged communist sympathizers from government work for years.
 

j brown's body

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Suppose it was someone who wasn't a pathological liar and a woman who was not happy to defend the murderers of American soldiers - would they have been right about Soviet infiltration and communists in the US federal government?

Hard to say. Providing evidence to support such an assertion would help in evaluating its validity.
 

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For ****'s sake NO. Learn some history. The Soviets did gin up a pretty decent Cold War espionage effort in the US, but it was much later than when McCarthy was railing about it. The 80s were the highlight, right before the collapse of the Soviet Union.

You have to understand the context of McCarthy's comments. They arose out of Maos' victory in China in 1949. There was this great feeling of "who lost China?" in the US, as Americans had felt close to and supportive of the Republic of China since its early days, and through the war against Japan. The communist victory there created a shock in the American public and on Capitol Hill. McCarthy's rhetoric led in part to purges at the State Department, which gutted the East Asia section. The loss of institutional and regional knowledge directly and negatively affected the ability of the US government to navigate the crisis in Indochina just a decade later.

This is all well documented and explained in many good books; I recommend Halberstam's, The Best and the Brightest.

McCarthy was a bomb thrower. Like Trump, he would throw out one crazy conspiracy theory and before it could be checked out and refuted, he'd toss out another one.
 

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Ok; how about the communists? Were there communists in the US federal government?

Not in elected positions.

There have no doubt been a handful who have served in the armed forces, if that is what you mean. Perhaps one of the people who did landscaping for the White House lawn thought Marx had some valid points in Das Kapital.

There was never any risk at all that ownership of private property was ever going to be abolished in the United States though.
 

LostInSeattle

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Not in elected positions.

There have no doubt been a handful who have served in the armed forces, if that is what you mean. Perhaps one of the people who did landscaping for the White House lawn thought Marx had some valid points in Das Kapital.

There was never any risk at all that ownership of private property was ever going to be abolished in the United States though.

And if such a risk ever existed, it was in the early 30s, not the early 50s.
 

ThirdTerm

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The KGB's infiltration campaign in America in the 1950s was much more successful than its modern successor's meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Joseph McCarthy absolutely did the right thing to stop Soviet infiltration in the government and academic institutions.

 

LostInSeattle

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The KGB's infiltration campaign in America in the 1950s was much more successful than its modern successor's meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Joseph McCarthy absolutely did the right thing to stop Soviet infiltration in the government and academic institutions.

evidence? sources?
 

Tigerace117

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The KGB's infiltration campaign in America in the 1950s was much more successful than its modern successor's meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Joseph McCarthy absolutely did the right thing to stop Soviet infiltration in the government and academic institutions.


Except he didn’t “stop Soviet infiltration” in the first place, since he was hysterically accusing a bunch of innocent people.
 

AConcernedCitizen

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Except he didn’t “stop Soviet infiltration” in the first place, since he was hysterically accusing a bunch of innocent people.

Speaking of innocent people, the Communist Party should never have been outlawed in the land of the free in the first place.
 

tshade

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Meaning what exactly?
ya know------if you looked at someone sideways he accused you of being communist...........conspiracy crap (Trumpers would have related well....)
 

SMTA

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Was Joseph McCarthy right about Soviet infiltration and communists in the US federal government?

Although I don't necessarily agree with Joseph McCarthy's approach & tactics in dealing with the problem, I have to wonder if he was right about its existence.
What a painfully stupid post.
 

CaughtInThe

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i'm fascinated that there are suddenly so many right wing posters here with under 500 posts.
 

EMNofSeattle

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Was Joseph McCarthy right about Soviet infiltration and communists in the US federal government?

Although I don't necessarily agree with Joseph McCarthy's approach & tactics in dealing with the problem, I have to wonder if he was right about its existence.
He totally was. We now know that communist sympathizers and in some case outright spies were within our government at every level.
 

EMNofSeattle

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Great poll! Can you start one about whether The Holocaust was a bad thing or not? Thanks!
This is the attitude of the left ^^^

To them countering the revolution is worse then actual genocide.
 

BrotherFease

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Was Joseph McCarthy right about Soviet infiltration and communists in the US federal government?

Although I don't necessarily agree with Joseph McCarthy's approach & tactics in dealing with the problem, I have to wonder if he was right about its existence.
Yes, there were spies within the government, but not because of McCarthy's "investigations". He was literally responsible for destroying people's lives for his own political gain. Edward R. Murrow basically exposed him as a fraud.
 

Tigerace117

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He totally was. We now know that communist sympathizers and in some case outright spies were within our government at every level.

He was anything but, and he happily defended the SS thugs who murdered American POWs to boot. He was a total scumbag on every level.
 

LostInSeattle

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ya know------if you looked at someone sideways he accused you of being communist...........conspiracy crap (Trumpers would have related well....)
Ah, I see.
 

SMTA

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This is the attitude of the left ^^^

To them countering the revolution is worse then actual genocide.
Way to completely miss the sarcasm with your partisan slanted view.
Hilarious.
 

SMTA

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SouthernDemocrat

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Although I don't necessarily agree with Joseph McCarthy's approach & tactics in dealing with the problem, I have to wonder if he was right about its existence.
You could make the same argument about Joseph Stalin’s paranoias.
 

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Was Joseph McCarthy right about Soviet infiltration and communists in the US federal government?

Although I don't necessarily agree with Joseph McCarthy's approach & tactics in dealing with the problem, I have to wonder if he was right about its existence.
McCarthy was using the "communist infiltration" to harass and ruin people that were not hard right conservatives. I know this because many people like my staunch Republican father, a professor in the NYS School of Industrial and Labor Relations were on McCarthy's list to be subpoenaed, simply because they taught at universities or did research on social topics which in McCarthy's dementia made them "commies". Apparently the fact that my father had spent a year doing research and writing recommendations for public policy on the elderly at the 20th Century Fund was what triggered his inclusion on the list.

(from Wikipedia) The Century Foundation (established first as The Cooperative League and then the Twentieth Century Fund) is a progressive think tank headquartered in New York City[2] with an office in Washington, D.C.[3] It was founded as a nonprofit public policy research institution[4] on the belief that the prosperity and security of the United States depends on a mix of effective government, open democracy, and free markets. Its staff, fellows, and authors produce books, reports, papers, pamphlets, and online publications.[4].

Neither my father nor the hundreds of others McCarthy went after were communists nor were they "infiltrating" the government.
 

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Although I don't necessarily agree with Joseph McCarthy's approach & tactics in dealing with the problem, I have to wonder if he was right about its existence.
No you don’t have to wonder. He produced very little evidence to support his claims.

Just because someone makes up a claim we are not obliged to “wonder” if it is true. That’s not how information works.

I don’t have to “wonder” if Elvis still alive, or whether aliens ate my cat, or if the My Pillow Guy might be on to something about Ivermectin.

If there is no evidence it can safely be discarded.
 
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