September 20, 2010

The 1952 Presidential election - low-tech but high hunches.

Nothing like listening to pundits from the past give hunches on, what were at the time, far-off events and limb-hanging predictions.

This program, part of the NBC Radio series "Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow from September 9, 1951 offers some fascinating predictions on the upcoming election in 1952, including one prediction that Dwight Eisenhower, not yet a declared candidate for either party, would go with the Republicans and the other that Harry Truman would not run for a second term.

The other was the observation that Sen. Joe McCarthy would start to lose his grip on the reign of terror he was waging all over Washington. As Publisher/editor William T. Evjue of the Capital Times of Madison Wisconsin put it:

William T. Evjue (editor, Capital Times, Madison Wisconsin): “The nation has waited for more than a year for Senator McCarthy to prove his charges. 567 days have elapsed since he first made his charges at Wheeling, West Virginia, that he held in his hand the names of 205 card carrying Communists in the State Department who were known to Secretary Acheson. In those 567 days Senator McCarthy has failed to produce proof against a single person. In his desperation to keep the offensive, he has made even more reckless and irresponsible charges, including the charge that General Marshall is part of a conspiracy to sell this nation out to the Communists.”

That one took little longer to materialize. But for the most part, the predictions were pretty spot-on. I'm wondering how our current batch of pundits will fare sixty years from now?

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