Channeling Joe McCarthy

Abby Zimet

It took breathtaking gall last week for Dick Cheney to blame 9-11 on former counter-terrorism chief Richard Clarke, who had spent months warning the Bush folks about a possible attack, only to be ignored. Happily, today, history gives us the perfect response. On this date in 1954, attorney Joseph Welch confronted Sen. Joe McCarthy about yet another character assassination the Red-baiting demagogue had undertaken. His challenge of McCarthy's bottomless cynicism and the paranoia of the times lives on: 

"Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last?"

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