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Be Thankful it was Harry [Truman], Not Henry [Wallace]
townhall.com ^ | November 26, 2011 | David R. Stokes

Posted on 11/26/2011 6:46:50 AM PST by statestreet

In the spirit of the recent holiday, among the many things for which Americans should be thankful is a political decision made more than 67 years ago as the Second World War was beginning to wind down and as the nation’s voters prepared for a presidential election. It was one of Franklin Roosevelt’s finest moments of decision, though admittedly, one he exercised reluctantly.

By 1944, FDR was living on borrowed time. It was a hardly a secret that health issues he had been dealing with were reaching critical mass, though only a few insiders had any idea as to the seriousness of his condition. When he ran for an unprecedented fourth term as President that year, he did so with the valley of the shadow of death looming just beyond the horizon.

This made the issue of the Vice Presidency much more important than usual. Entering that political year, Roosevelt was on his second VP, the first—John Nance Garner—had opted out after two terms. In his stead served a political oddball named Henry Agard Wallace. And if Franklin Roosevelt hadn’t dumped Mr. Wallace from the ticket in favor of Harry S. Truman that year, the post-World War Two world would have been significantly influenced by a pro-Communist lackey for the Soviet Union, who once suggested that “if we could practice eugenics on people. We could turn out a beautiful golden race.” Up to that fateful year, Wallace—who was the poster child for strange—was but a heartbeat away from the Oval Office.

This issue has been recently revisited by historian David Pietrusza in his masterful new book, 1948: Harry Truman’s Improbable Victory and the Year that Transformed America. Pietrusza dissects that watershed election cycle with compelling portraits of the people who then occupied the country’s political stage...

(Excerpt) Read more at townhall.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 1948; progressive; truman; wallace

1 posted on 11/26/2011 6:46:56 AM PST by statestreet
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To: statestreet
Mr. Wallace, who once suggested that “if we could practice eugenics on people. We could turn out a beautiful golden race.”

Not much difference from the man who envisioned the perfect Aryan race, Adolf Hitler.

2 posted on 11/26/2011 6:57:01 AM PST by painter (No wonder democrats don't mind taxes.THEY DON'T PAY THEM !)
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To: statestreet

Wow. Thanks for the post!


3 posted on 11/26/2011 7:01:43 AM PST by TEXOKIE (Happy Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas to all FREEPERS EVERYWHERE!)
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To: statestreet

From the article: “Entering that political year, Roosevelt was on his second VP, the first—John Nance Garner—had opted out after two terms.”

Not exactly true. The fact is John Nance Garner decided to challenge Franklin Delano Roosevelt for the Democratic Party nomination in 1939 when it became clear FDR was a megalomaniac who would never relinquish power before death took it from him. The country later passed a constitutional amendment to prevent future Emperors who lacked the wisdom of our first president from abusing their power as FDR had done.


4 posted on 11/26/2011 7:09:48 AM PST by ngat
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To: painter

There is a “golden race” and they call themseves “La Raza.”

John McCain and Rick Perry have gone to their events and supported them.


5 posted on 11/26/2011 7:15:47 AM PST by MrEdd (Heck? Geewhiz Cripes, thats the place where people who don't believe in Gosh think they aint going.)
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To: statestreet

Obama is even more radical than Henry Wallace.


6 posted on 11/26/2011 7:17:00 AM PST by whitedog57
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To: ngat

Does anyone know what caused FDR to drop Wallace in favor of Truman? I was too young to know anything about it, and those events were too fresh for my schools to teach anything about it.


7 posted on 11/26/2011 7:18:55 AM PST by afraidfortherepublic
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To: ngat

Does anyone know what caused FDR to drop Wallace in favor of Truman? I was too young to know anything about it, and those events were too fresh for my schools to teach anything about it.


8 posted on 11/26/2011 7:18:55 AM PST by afraidfortherepublic
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To: statestreet

Wasn’t Wallace the one who toured Russia, including gulags, and came back with glowing reports of the glorious revolution?


9 posted on 11/26/2011 7:22:17 AM PST by SuzyQue
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To: SuzyQue
Wasn’t Wallace the one who toured Russia, including gulags, and came back with glowing reports of the glorious revolution?

Yes, and he thought that the facade that the communists put
on for him was real. Just like a Micheal Moore movie. I have
been reading up on this segment of history recently and it
is amazing just how totally Stalin had FDR and his followers
deluded.

10 posted on 11/26/2011 7:56:35 AM PST by CrazyIvan (Obama's birth certificate was found stapled to Soros's receipt.)
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To: afraidfortherepublic

“Wallace’s left-wing views made him increasingly unpopular in the Democratic Party and Roosevelt came under pressure to drop him as his vice-president in 1944. Roosevelt was unwilling to protect Wallace and Harry S. Truman got the nomination. However, Roosevelt continued to value Wallace’s abilities and when he was re-elected he appointed him as his Secretary of Commerce.

Wallace, who was Secretary of Commerce after the war, favoured co-operation with the Soviet Union. In private he disagreed with Harry S. Truman about what he considered to be an aggressive foreign policy. Wallace went public about his fears at a meeting in New York in September, 1946. After complaints from James F. Byrnes, Secretary of State, and James Forrestal, Secretary of Defence, Truman sacked Wallace as Secretary of Commerce.

Wallace was editor of the New Republic (1946-48) and helped to launch the new Progressive Party. In 1948 Wallace became the new party’s candidate in the presidential election. His programme included new civil rights legislation that would give equal opportunities for black Americans in voting, employment and education, repeal of the Taft-Hartley Bill and increased spending on welfare, education, and public works. Wallace’s foreign policy program was based on opposition to the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan”.

Found at:http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USARwallace.htm

The very first sentence really ought to stand out, not to mention the rest of the story.


11 posted on 11/26/2011 7:59:40 AM PST by wita
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To: afraidfortherepublic

“Does anyone know what caused FDR to drop Wallace in favor of Truman?”

Personally I think Roosevelt realized by then that he had already given the store to Stalin, and he was afraid Wallace would give away the whole shopping center.


12 posted on 11/26/2011 8:18:27 AM PST by ngat
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To: afraidfortherepublic

It was all secret, but top Democrats saw Wallace as too radical and knew that FDR was in rapidly declining health. FDR choose to drop Wallace in favor of Truman. The exact reasons for picking Truman are also unknown. Leftists, including Eleanor Roosevelt, were furious at FDR, but the bosses ruled the convention in those days.


13 posted on 11/26/2011 8:26:56 AM PST by iowamark (Rick Perry says I'm heartless.)
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To: iowamark
Eleanor Roosevelt

That inbred broad did a tremendous amount of damage on her own.

14 posted on 11/26/2011 9:00:25 AM PST by buccaneer81 (ECOMCON)
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To: statestreet
In 1948 Wallace became the new party’s candidate in the presidential election.

I was a kid when I watched the 1948 Communist May Day parade in NYC and they were chanting:
"2, 4, 6, 8 Henry Wallace in '48!"
At the end of the parade, a bunch of stevedores showed up shouting:
"2, 4, 6, 8 Henry Wallace suffocate!"
Then the fists and truncheons flew and the mounted police came charging in. Quite a show.

Years later in a college level Poly Sci class, we discussed whether the office made the man or vice versa. In Truman's case, we decided that the office made the man as Truman, IMO, was a party hack who was rewarded for being faithful and ended up doing a pretty good job. Much like Ford was in later years, only the office didn't have much to work with and failed in that case.

15 posted on 11/26/2011 9:07:14 AM PST by Oatka (This is the USA, assimilate or evaporate.)
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To: iowamark; ngat; wita

Thank you for your thoughtful responses and further information. I attended public school between 1943 and 1956. I don’t think we studied history any newer than WWI. I had one teacher who had been a German POW in WWII that we peppered with questions when he was in a good mood, but he was necessarily vague when questioned about things like hiding notes, passing information to others, etc. Anything else we had to learn from returning relatives who also didn’t want to talk about it.

Because the history was still happening, we did not get a very good over view of current events. Not like today when every teacher has an axe to grind and attempts to mold the minds of their charges one way or another. I remember my Senior Civics class in HS — we all thought the teacher was an impossible old fuddy duddy.

I realize now that she gave me The New Republic and The Nation to read. That was pretty radical for those years. She retired that year, however, and she did give me a copy of The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution when she cleared out her room. So, she wasn’t all bad.


16 posted on 11/26/2011 9:22:40 AM PST by afraidfortherepublic
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To: wita; afraidfortherepublic
Wallace was editor of the New Republic (1946-48) and helped to launch the new Progressive Party.

The publisher of the New Republic was Soviet agent Michael Straight. Straight's 1983 memoir "After Long Silence," while somewhat dishonest, is nonetheless very interesting. The Progressive Party was run and funded by Soviet agents. Henry Wallace broke with Stalin during the Korean War.

17 posted on 11/26/2011 10:25:40 AM PST by iowamark (Rick Perry says I'm heartless.)
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To: iowamark
The exact reasons for picking Truman are also unknown. Leftists, including Eleanor Roosevelt, were furious at FDR, but the bosses ruled the convention in those days.

Though Truman had a (well deserved) reputation for honesty and integrity, when he was elected to the US senate, he was known within that body as "The Senator from Pendergast," a very powerful political boss.

Mark

18 posted on 11/26/2011 10:56:33 AM PST by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: Oatka
In Truman's case, we decided that the office made the man as Truman, IMO, was a party hack who was rewarded for being faithful and ended up doing a pretty good job.

I strongly disagree. Though he was a failure in business, he had great personal integrity (as evidenced by his insistence of repaying all his creditors, rather than escaping through bankruptcy) and leadership skills, as displayed by his reputation with the men he commanded during WWI during and well after the war.

While he was "Pendergast's man," Perndergast needed him FOR his honesty. He would hold Pendergast's feet to the flame when he'd try to pressure Truman to accept graft. The best example of this was the job Truman did to cut back on political corruption and kickbacks during the war effort while he was a senator.

Mark

19 posted on 11/26/2011 11:03:31 AM PST by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: MarkL

Thanks for the info. Because of the Perndergast association, he had been painted as just a Missouri hack that made good, but I never investigated further.


20 posted on 11/26/2011 11:10:21 AM PST by Oatka (This is the USA, assimilate or evaporate.)
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To: Oatka
IIRC, he (Truman) was the only pol who actually attended Pendergast's funeral. Against a lot of political opposition from his supporters. Another of his qualities was loyalty.

And he was very much his own man, even more so when he became President. Against a lot of opposition, he integrated the military (which I believe had been segregated by Wilson) and supported the creation of the State of Israel, against the opposition of George Marshall.

As you said, I do believe that he grew into the office as a great President, but all the "raw materials" were there before he ever got into politics. If you ever get a chance, a terrific biography was a made for TV movie, starring Gary Sinese.

When I was little, I remember Truman mowing his own yard in Independence.

Mark

21 posted on 11/26/2011 11:55:26 AM PST by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: MarkL
"The Senator from Pendergast," a very powerful political boss.

Not many people here would know who he was.I'm in my 50's here in Missouri and a history buff.

He was also a ganster similar to Capone who made most of his money selling bootleg whiskey during prohibition. I new an old guy who had two bootleg joints and he got his whiskey from him.

22 posted on 11/26/2011 11:56:41 AM PST by painter (No wonder democrats don't mind taxes.THEY DON'T PAY THEM !)
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To: Oatka
My grandfather voted for Dewy in 48 because of Truman's connection to Pendergast.
23 posted on 11/26/2011 12:00:40 PM PST by painter (No wonder democrats don't mind taxes.THEY DON'T PAY THEM !)
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To: MarkL; painter
When I was little, I remember Truman mowing his own yard in Independence.

What hit me is that I understand he was the last president to leave office and not get a pension.

24 posted on 11/26/2011 12:41:19 PM PST by Oatka (This is the USA, assimilate or evaporate.)
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To: MarkL
Though Truman had a (well deserved) reputation for honesty and integrity

I hope that you are joking!

The Truman administration was perhaps the most corrupt in US history. He was well aware of this and devoted constant effort to derailing reformers like Estes Kefauver.

25 posted on 11/26/2011 5:23:56 PM PST by iowamark (Rick Perry says I'm heartless.)
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