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I wish I could turn the clock back
As I sat at my desk the other morning thinking about all the turmoil in government today I suddenly wished that I were back in the 1950s. Then, just being a young teenager, the only thing that I had to worry about was what time was dinner.
The only national scare was that the Russians would drop an A bomb on us and we were all instructed on how to hide under our school desks. I don’t know how that would have saved our behind.
I do not remember any controversy in regards to any members of the federal government, except that of Wisconsin’ senator, Joe McCarthy, who in a 1950 speech blamed failures in America’s Foreign Policy on Communist infiltration of the U. S. Government. For the next four years he called almost everyone a Communist, until he was censured by the senate in 1954.
Our nation was strong with a great economy and the jobs were plentiful and in 1957 I turned sixteen, and bought my first car. A 1949 Ford convertible for the large sum of $400, money that I have saved from working in the print shop.
I remember the presidential election of 1956, where incumbent president Dwight D. Eisenhower was being opposed by Adlai Stevenson II, a rematch of the 1952 election.
To find information about the 1956 election, I turned to Wikipedia for the following:
“Eisenhower, who had first become famous for his military leadership in World War II, remained widely popular. A heart attack in 1955 provoked speculation that he would not seek a second term, but his health recovered and he faced no opposition at the 1956 Republican National Convention. Stevenson remained popular with a core of liberal Democrats, but held no office and had no real base. Stevenson called for a significant increase in government spending on social programs and a decrease in military spending.”
That social spending is what is driving the Democratic Congress today, things apparently have not changed.
Back to Wikipedia, “With the end of the Korean War and a strong economy, few doubted that the charismatic Eisenhower would be reelected. Supporters of the president focused on his personal qualities, his sincerity, his integrity and sense of duty, his virtue as a family man, his religious devotion, and his sheer likeableness, rather than on his leadership record. The weeks before the election saw two major international crises in the Middle East and Eastern Europe, and Eisenhower’s handling of the crises boosted his popularity.”
There was some gossip about Eisenhower’s relationship with his female driver during the war, but apparently that was not a factor in the election.
Eisenhower won the 1956 election with 35.5 million votes to Stevenson’s 26 million. If I related to you about the population growth of the United States since 1956 in this way, Trump got twice as many votes in 2020 as Eisenhower got in 1956 and Trump lost the election to Biden. In the Electoral Vote Eisenhower carried 41 of the 48 states.
A couple of interesting facts about the 1956 election include that this was the last presidential election before the admissions of Alaska and Hawaii in 1959, the last presidential election in which both Massachusetts and Minnesota voted Republican, the last election in which the candidates were born in the 19th century, and the most recent election to have a rematch of a previous election.
“The problem we face today is that the people who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.”—George Bernard Shaw (1856-1959)
Thanks for reading ~Carlton