Senator Barry Goldwater nominated for president
Senator Barry Goldwater (R-Arizona) is nominated by the Republican Party to run for president. During the subsequent campaign, Goldwater said that he thought the United States should do whatever was necessary to win in Vietnam. At one point, he talked about the possibility of ...read more
THE CASE FOR CONSERVATISM
When we speak of America’s future, I believe we must tie it irrevocably to the future of freedom throughout the world. The United States today is the leader of the antislavery forces in the world, and its conduct, both at home and in the international sphere, has ramifications which stretch far beyond our borders.
And because of this role, I believe the future hope for America lies in political conservatism. The world being what it is in this year of 1962, I don’t think we have a choice. I believe the nature of the enemy has decided this question for us—as reluctant as some adherents to benevolent collectivism seem to be to accept the reality.
In fact, I believe that the job of conservatism today is every American’s job. We are faced with a world-wide threat from totalitarian leftist forces. Whether we like it or not, Communist-inspired events around the world have necessarily placed this nation in a conservative position. We find ourselves pitted against the total regimented society. We find ourselves contesting with the all-powerful state. We find ourselves in the role of guardian and defender of a just social system and a decent civil order. We find ourselves cast as the world’s foremost possessor of the blessings that flow naturally from a governmental system founded on freedom for the individual. In other words, we find ourselves—more than ever before in our history—in a conservative position, defending individual freedom against the threat of collectivist slavery.
Now how well are we equipped to take this position? How deeply dedicated are we, in and out of government, to our sacred cause? How well equipped are we to meet and defeat an enemy which brings against us the ultimate in zeal and fanaticism?
These are questions that more and more concerned Americans are asking themselves and their national leaders today. The evidence is strong and growing stronger that there is something wrong with the orientation given us by the American liberals for the struggle ahead. There is reason to question whether these liberals fully and accurately understand exactly what it is that threatens our survival and the cause of freedom. There is strong cause to wonder whether those with a long history of tolerance for what once was referred to as “the great experiment in Russia” are philosophically and ideologically capable of coming to grips with communism now that communism has become our proven mortal enemy. We have reason to ask whether dedicated American liberals really have the heart for the kind of effort it will take to win over the forces which are sworn to bury us.
What else are we to think when we consider proposals offered in the field of foreign policy by liberal essayists writing in a recent publication called The Liberal Papers? This document, frightening in its leftist-leaning naïveté and its overtone of naked appeasement of communism, was produced by a group called the Liberal Project. Founders of the project include Democratic congressmen, former Democratic congressmen, and government officials.
I would say that the suggestions made in The Liberal Papers are important both as a warning to the American people and as a guide to where liberal policies would lead the United States if not properly restrained. In a word, they would take us to abject surrender of practically all of our national strategic interests in the present struggle against international communism. They call, among other things, for U.S. recognition, UN membership, and U.S. financial aid to Red China for recognition by the United States of Red China’s claim to Formosa and the Pescadores for demilitarization of the German Federal Republic for U.S. recognition of the Communist puppet regime in East Germany for expulsion of West Germany, Italy, Scandinavia, and France from the NATO organization for a shutdown of American missile bases in Europe for an invitation to Russia to plug in on a bidirectional DEW line.
The weight of the argument presented in The Liberal Papers is to the effect that we have made a bogeyman out of our Communist enemy while, in point of fact, he may be really a nice chap who wants to reduce world tensions. The way we can prove this, the liberal thesis continues, is to take broad unilateral action, sacrificing things like the strength of NATO, and see if Russia and Red China do not reciprocate in kind.
Now this is patent nonsense, and nobody expects the President of the United States to follow any such ridiculous course. But the important point to bear in mind here is that these proposals are advanced from the liberal position in the American political spectrum. They are examples of extremism far more dangerous than the type of anti-Communist extremism that has so agitated the American liberal community. Yet, these proposals have not been the subject of any denunciation by the intellectual community on the left. They have been disavowed as not representative of their views by some Democratic congressmen whose names have been connected with the Liberal Project. But they have been defended, too, as a type of healthy discussion that should surround the development of American policy in the Cold War.
In their extremism and their complete disregard for the realities of these critical times, these proposals deserve more than that. They require a thoroughgoing discrediting by people of liberal persuasions who today are attempting to convince the American people that their approach to the problems of the United States and the world is the correct approach. I suggest that the growing realization that our position in today’s world is a conservative position and that it takes more than appeasement to defend that position is one of the root causes for the phenomenal rise in conservative thought in America today. To that, of course, must be added the nationwide disenchantment with the economic policies of extravagance and high taxes, policies which have cost the American people billions and billions of dollars and still have left us with a high rate of unemployment and a slow rate of economic growth.
The answers which the liberals have given us over the years have been tried and found wanting, not only in the domestic economy, but also in America’s conduct of the Cold War. The liberals have had chance after chance to prove their theories of what is good for America. They have had almost carte blanche access to the public treasury. They have had a free hand to test the advantages of the Welfare State. They have experimented with social and economic planning. They have extended American largesse to every part of the world. They have had ample opportunity to explore the advantages of contesting with communism in the world of public opinion. They have exhausted the limits of sweet reason and international idealism in handling the Soviet menace. They have given full rein to the idea that the way to conduct American foreign policy is through extreme deference to the UN.
And what has all this done for us?
For one thing, it has placed us in line for a one hundred billion dollar budget within a few years’ time. It has given us one of the highest tax rates any free country has ever experienced. It has given us a dangerously threatened monetary system, an unfavorable balance of international payments, a sorely depleted gold reserve. It has placed us in a defensive position in the Cold War—a position in which a Communist upstart in Cuba can threaten the whole western hemisphere a position in which Communist walls can be built against freedom with complete impunity a position which finds us supporting aggression against pro-Western anti-Communists in the Congo.
I suggest that the liberal approach to America’s problems has failed miserably in almost every sphere of activity. I suggest that men committed to collectivism and social engineering in domestic affairs are ill-equipped for—indeed, almost incapable of—combatting the disease of world-wide collectivist slavery as exemplified by international communism. I suggest that such men will lean naturally and compulsively to every form of appeasement, hoping against hope that some basis for coexistence with communism can be found. I suggest that such leanings and such hopes in the face of brutal Communist aggression contain the seeds of destruction for the United States of America.
We are today in a position where only the speedy application of conservative principles can meet the threat.
We are in a position where we must —for the sake of survival—recognize communism for the enemy it is and dedicate ourselves once and for all to a policy of victory.
We are in a position where all the resources at our command must be channeled into the struggle for freedom.
What good has it done us to pretend that communism is something less than our sworn enemy? What good has it done to spend billions of dollars helping to build up the economics and the war potential of Communist nations? What good has it done to try to butter up the so-called neutral nations with foreign aid handouts? What good has it done us to follow the irresponsible course of public extravagance, deficit financing, and inflation at home?
These are the questions, I suggest, that Americans are asking today in their quest for a policy that will put this country back in an offensive position. These are the questions that are accompanying the growth of conservatism in America today.
How strong and how widespread is the conservative revival in America today? How enduring is it? Is it a fad that will flourish today and perhaps tomorrow and then lose its momentum and die out entirely? Or is it really a vast movement rooted in the valid patriotic concern of the American people for our nation’s survival and the future of freedom? Is it an approach limited by age brackets or geographical areas? Or is it a movement with limitless appeal for all who prize liberty and fear communism as well as the encroachment of big socialized government?
No family in territorial or state history of Arizona had more dramatic adventures or contributed more than the Goldwaters. Of that there is no question, but are the Goldwaters really a part of the pioneer Jewish history of Arizona?
When Senator Barry M. Goldwater ran for the presidency in 1964 there were nationally- syndicated columnists who wrote that the Arizona Republican was hiding the fact that he was Jewish. In GOLDWATER, an autobiography written in 1988, the senator wrote: "Neither my father nor any of our family ever took any part in the Jewish community. We never felt or talked about being half Jewish since my mother took us to the Episcopal church. It was only on entering the power circles of Washington that I was reminded I was a Jew. I never got used to being singled out in that way. My answer was always the same. I'm proud of my ancestors and heritage. I've simply never practiced the Jewish faith or seen myself or our family primarily of the Jewish culture. In the jargon of today's sociologist, we've been assimilated. We're American."
The Senator was raised as an Episcopalian, but his father was Bar Mitzvah, his grandfather was a leader in California Jewish congregations and in Arizona's territorial days before there were temples or rabbis, grandfather Michael was a lay leader in informal Jewish services at high holidays. Columnists could write that the Senator was half-Jewish, but by the matrilineal line of descent in Judaism, Barry is not Jewish because his mother was a practicing Episcopalian.
Columnists nevertheless could tease that Barry is half-jewish and there was a joke that used to make the rounds. The Senator went to play golf at a restricted Phoenix country club. The club pro apologized to the Senator for not allowing him to play whereupon Barry Goldwater supposedly replied: "Why, that's all right. I only wanted to play nine holes."
Jokes aside, the Goldwater story is an important part of the Jewish history of Arizona and it begins in the "old country," just as it does for so many other immigrant families coming to the "Goldene Medino," the golden land of opportunity-America.
It was by one of these historic coincidences that three young men left England for the United States aboard the same ship and were to be the beginning of two Jewish families who were to write great chapters in the history of Arizona. In the depths of the steamship in steerage class were Michael and Joseph Goldwater and another young man, Philip Drachman, who was to pioneer in Tucson. The adventuring Goldwater brothers were two of twenty-two children born to Hirsch and Elizabeth Goldwasser of Konin, Poland, the site of a Nazi force labor camp where in 1943 Jewish prisoners burned down the huts, tried to escape and almost all were killed. Were there relatives of Senator Goldwater in that camp?
It is possible because the Godwasser family of Konin had been so large. In the book, This Land, These Voices, Barry Goldwater tells of being so proud of his relatives he tried tracing out the family tree. He started with his grandfather Michael and then, he said,: "I found his brother Joe, who was with him in Arizona, and another who was the mayor of Bulawayo, Rhodesia, and one in Australia and that's about as far as I got." the Senator continued: "Well, they left Poland, I guess, for the same reason all Polish Jews left-they wanted to be free from the Russians."
Like other Jew, the family in Konin felt the terror of the pogroms and the fear of being conscripted into the Russian army. Michael left Konin, went to Paris and then to England where he met and married Sarah Gnathion in the Great Synagogue of London on March 6, 1850. The contract of marriage was recorded in a "ketubah," a traditional scroll written in Hebrew-all this early evidence of the Jewishness of the Goldwaters. The name change was made in England. Michael Goldwater was a successful tailor in London and way busy raising a family Caroline and Morris both were born in London.
In London it was Joseph who pressed his elder brother into many adventures, and misadventures, in America. It was Joe who convinced Michael that the real opportunity was not in tailoring in London, but in the New World. Sarah Gnathion Goldwater was fearful of undertaking the trip to the New World and apparently not at all convinced by the stories of her brother-in-law.
On an August day in 1852 Michael and Joseph boarded the ship for America while Sarah and her two small children waved from the dock. The American adventure for the Goldwaters had begun. The ship landed in New York where the brothers remained for a while Philip Drachman went on to Philadelphia where he found family and work as a tailor. Once again it was brother Joe who set up the next step he was convinced that they would literally find gold in California and so the brothers soon were back on shipboard heading for Nicaragua. There they crossed the Isthmus of Panama by the crude of travel means and then boarded another steamer for San Francisco. The year was 1852 and for brother Joe the opportunity was not in San Francisco but in the mining camp of Sonora. There were a number of Jewish merchants and miners in Sonora when the brothers arrived in '53. The Goldwaters sought an opportunity, but found they did not have the resources to start a merchandising operation. The least expensive venture would be in a saloon. When Sarah and her two children came to Sonora she was not in the least happy with the business her husband had chosen and was more disturbed when she learned that over the bar someone else was running a house of prostitution.
In fact Sarah never seemed to find great pleasure in the American West. San Francisco, compared to her London town, was crude, Sonora even rougher. Well, it is obvious that she believed the Arizona Territory was no place for a cultured Jewish woman and it is thought that she spurned coming to the area where her husband was busy establishing what was to become the Goldwater empire. It is possible that she came to Arizona once, but that visit is not recorded in any papers yet discovered. Most of her lifetime was spent in Los Angeles and San Francisco where her husband visited often enough that the Goldwater family expanded to eight children.
The Goldwater brothers did poorly in Sonora and fared no better when they moved to Los Angeles where the brothers had a billiard parlor, bar and a tobacco shop in the Bella Union Hotel. Michael had brought with him from the Sonora failure more than $3,000 in debts and he filed for what today probably would be a Chapter Eleven bankruptcy. A friendship with a Los Angeles doctor, Wilson W. Jones, turned around the Goldwater story. Dr. Jones had been to the Arizona mining camp at Gila City and convinced Michael of the business possibilities there. Brother Joe advanced for Michael to purchase a wagon, merchandise to be peddled to the miners, and four mules to pull all of it through the hard desert ride to the Colorado River. Gila City was some twenty miles north of what is now Yuma, Arizona. That ubiquitous traveler-writer, J. Ross Browne, described the mining camp at Gila City this way: "At one time a thousand hardy adventurers were prospecting the gulches and canyons in this vicinity.
"The earth was turned inside out. Rumors of extraordinary discoveries flew on the winds in every direction. Enterprising men hurried to the spot with barrels of whiskey and billiard tables Jews came with ready-made clothing and fancy wares traders crowded in with wagon-loads of pork and beans and gamblers came with cards and monte-tables. There was everything in Gila City within a few months but a church and a jail, Which were accounted barbarisms by the mass of the population."
Things went well for Michael Goldwater and on July 29, 1861 he became a citizen of the United States. The glow of Michael's trade along the Colorado River faded quickly when brother Joe slipped into financial difficulty. Joe had gone to San Francisco where in 1862 he married Ellen Blackman. At that time he also over-bought merchandise in San Francisco and soon a sheriff's sale took away all of Big Mike's merchandise, his wagon and his mules. Once again the Goldwater story seemed to be ending in disaster, but again Michael found a friend, Bernard Cohn, who came to the rescue. Cohn, who was a member of the Los Angeles City Council in 1878, made a proposal Michael could not turn down. He offered Mike a clerk's job in his store in La Paz, the little trading center of the Colorado River. Now Big Mike was established in the territory of Arizona in 1862. It was not very long before Michael became Cohn's partner and he also joined in side ventures with other pioneer Jews of the area, Solomon Barth and Aaron Barnett.
In 1863 Arizona officially received territorial status and Prescott was named its capital. Michael Goldwater saw opportunity and with his friend Dr. Jones he began a freighting business from the river to Prescott, the town that would become the basis for the Goldwater empire. The empire building did not come easily. On the rough wagon trails across the desert Indians often attacked freighters. On one freighting trip, the Goldwater brothers and Dr. Jones were heading back to the river from Prescott when they were attacked by Mohave Apaches. Doc Jones and Mike were in the lead buggy and Joe was in another buggy just behind them. The Indians began firing and one bullet cut through the doctor's hat, and two shots drilled holes in Mike's hat. Joe was not as fortunate. He was hit in the lower back and another ball lodged in his shoulder. The Indians were driven from their ambush of the Goldwater party by ranchers who had come on the battle scene. Dr. Jones worked on Joe, treating him until the party arrived at a military camp where a surgeon was found. For years Joe carried on his watch chain the ball Dr. Jones had taken from his back.
Misfortune dogged Joe in California and Arizona. While Mike moved forward, Joe seemed to have a black cloud over his head he resembled Al Capp's troubled cartoon character Joe Btfsplk. Joe was to be involved with other fights with Indians, in robberies and his wife died at a very early age.
Brother Michael was doing well, however. He was merchandising, freighting and even ventured into mining by an off-business event. Mike and Bernard Cohn virtually became owners of the storied Vulture Mine in Wickenburg, Arizona, when the owners could not pay for almost $35,000 in supplies. The partners took temporary possession of the Vulture until they had collected the dept in gold extracted from the mine. After ninety days the mine was returned to the original owners. Another strange twist led to the naming of a new town in Arizona and opening a store there. One of the Goldwaters' friends was engineer and map-maker Herman Ehrenberg, often described as the first Jew to come to Arizona. On one trip across the desert with his son Morris, Mike came across the body of Ehrenberg, apparently slain by Indians. In his honor the Goldwaters named the Colorado river town Ehrenberg and opened a store there. For a short while, Joe was the town's postmaster and young Morris apprenticed in the store. Years later in research in Yuma it was discovered that the full name of the map-maker was Herman Christian Ehrenberg and that he was a member of the Lutheran church in Germany.
In 1872 Michael decided to open a store in Phoenix, a town that was later that was to become one of the west's largest cities but at that time was so unimportant that when the railroad came to Arizona it by-passed Phoenix. The Phoenix store did not do well and there was little or no growth at Ehrenberg so the stores were closed and Mike turned to Prescott, the territorial capital, for his next business adventure. The store opened there in 1876. For Michael this was a key move for brother Joe troubles continued. Again he was in trouble over indebtedness in merchandising and San Francisco creditors sought to have him brought to court. Extradition from Arizona was requested and a sheriff, a deputy United states marshal and a railroad security policeman arrived in Yuma to arrest Joe Goldwater. Joe was having dinner in the home of another pioneer Jewish merchant, Isaac Lyons, when the officers arrested him. Yuma citizens tried to stop what they considered a kidnapping. Even though the charges against Joe Goldwater were dropped, creditors continued to press for some $46,000 they said Joe owed them. Now the U.S. District Court in Tucson ordered seizure of Goldwater assets in Yuma. The Yuma sheriff was told to carry out the order. He refused and as the incident escalated a posse was sent to Yuma with a federal deputy marshal in charge. The marshal was to take goods in the store owned by Lyons who had purchased the items from Joe Goldwater. When the officer tried to take the goods from the store, Lyons resisted. Soon Yuma citizens surrounded the store, and the crowd included guards from the Territorial Prison at Yuma. Everything was set for a major fight when Goldwater and Lyons prevented bloodshed by calling off their friends and submitting to arrest.
Again Joe Goldwater went to San Francisco where the judge said California had no jurisdiction over the Arizona matter. Joe Goldwater was cleared but his credit was ruined.
In Prescott, despite fires and robberies, the Goldwater succeeded and soon there was expansion wherever mining ventures began throughout the territory. In speeches Barry Goldwater often used to deliver in his home state, he would say, "In spite of things you may hear and read, I would contend that the thing the Goldwaters have done best for the past hundred years in Arizona is sell pants. At different times there have been Goldwater stores at La Paz, Ehrenberg, Prescott, Parker, Seymour, Lynx Creek, Phoenix, Bisbee, Fairbank, Contention, Tombstone, Benson and Critenden (not only are all the Goldwater stores gone now, but so are many of those towns).
"In the early days our family tried to meet every need of their communities. at first our store took pride in supplying most of the clothing, household, food, farm and industrial needs of pioneer towns. A customer could be completely outfitted at Goldwater-from cradle to grave. There are pages in old company ledgers that actually relate the sale of baby wear and hardware for coffins on the same day. We sold everything the prospector needed from drill bits and black powder to demijohns of whiskey. We stocked groceries and stock fee shoes and hats furniture from Austria and herrings from Holland horseshoes and horse collars we had lamps and rugs for the front parlor, spices and soap for the kitchen, and anything needed for the outhouse. Golwaters was a complete store."
Goldwater's became a household word not only in merchandising but also in state, national and international politics. There was longevity in both areas. The Goldwater merchandising that started with the beginning of the 1960's along the Colorado River continued until 1962 when the business was sold to Associated Dry Goods Corporation of New York. The great story of the Goldwaters in politics not only was important in territorial days but remains an influence more than a century after Big Mike's arrival in Arizona territory.
The political story of the Goldwaters is well-known, especially the career of Barry M. Goldwater, who as a United States Senator became known as Mr. Conservative and also was painted a trigger-happy militarist by opponents when he ran unsuccessfully as the Republican candidate of for president in 1964. The Senator had gotten his start in Arizona politics in 1949 when Harry Rosenzweig, son of a pioneer Phoenix jeweler, persuaded him to run for the Phoenix City Council on a better government ticket. Both were elected. The Senator readily admits that he learned his politics at the knee of his Uncle Morris. Morris, Mayor of Prescott for twenty-two years, was a Democrat, and if that is not enough of a political twist, in his later years after retirement from the Senate Barry Goldwater stunned conservatives and even moderate Republicans by coming out for right of choice of abortion and even supported a Flagstaff Democrat for national office.
In their home in Poland the Goldwater boys must have had strong religious training. This was evident in their years in America, not only with the first generation, but with the second as well for Baron, the Senator's father, was Bar Mitzvah in San Francisco. The Senator's grandfather, Michael, was very active in Jewish affairs on the western frontier. In California he had been a member and officer in three Jewish congregations. A story in a Prescott newspaper before the turn of the century relates Michael Goldwater recited Hebrew prayers at the grave of a young boy who had been run over and killed by a freight wagon. When Michael Goldwater completed his Arizona adventures and returned to San Francisco to be with his wife, he became a leader in Jewish affairs again. He was chairman of the committee that founded Hills of Eternity Cemetery at Colma, California where Marshall Wyatt Earp is buried in the Marcus family plot [the Tombstone lawman's wife was Josephine Sarah Marcus.] Michael also headed the first Hebrew Benevolent Society in San Francisco and also chaired the first Zionist meeting in that city March 1, 1898.
When the great Arizona pioneer died in 1903 just a few months short of his eighty-second birthday, Cong. Sherith Israel wrote a memorial tribute to him that began: "It having pleased our heavenly Father in his infinite wisdom to call from our midst our venerable and respected member and ardent worker in the cause of Judaism."
The early Goldwaters had strong Jewish convictions, so strong that out of respect to their mother her sons did not marry out of the faith until after she died. It is said that Sarah kept a list of Jewish girls for her son to date when they came to visit her in San Francisco. It may not have helped, but when Henry was taken by a pretty non-Jewish school teacher from Keokuk, Iowa, Julia Kellogg, he faced opposition from brother Morris. Morris intervened, convincing them to alter there plans. Julia agreed to undergo conversion and the couple was married in Chicago in 1893 by Rabbi Emil Hirsch.
Morris did not follow his own advice. He married out of the faith, but only after mother Sarah had died. Yet all was not forgotten of his background by Morris Goldwater for when he died in Prescott an item among his personal effects puzzled his friends. The item was sent to a rabbi in Tucson for identification. It turned out that for all his years in Prescott, despite intermarriage, Morris had kept in his possession a mezzuzah-a parchment scroll with prayers that is mounted on the entry way of Jewish homes.
After Barry Goldwater's wife Peggy died, the Senator remarried in 1992. Harry Rozenzweig, Barry's life-long personal and political friend, remarked with a smile, "Susan Wechsler is a very nice Jewish woman."
Barry Goldwater (born 1909) was elected as a Republican to the U.S. Senate five times between 1952 and 1980, leaving temporarily to run unsuccessfully for president in 1964. His outspoken conservatism gained him the label "Mr. Conservative" in American politics. He was considered the most important American conservative between Senator Robert Taft's death in 1953 and Ronald Reagan's election as governor of California in 1966.
Barry Morris Goldwater was born in Phoenix, Arizona, on January 1, 1909, the first child of Baron and Josephine Williams Goldwater. His Polish-born grandfather and great-uncle had migrated to the Arizona territory from the California Gold Rush fields. They discovered that there were easier ways to make a fortune - such as operating a bordello and bar. They also founded a small general store, J. Goldwater & Bro., in La Paz in 1867. Soon the brothers opened stores throughout Arizona with the Phoenix branch, established in 1872, becoming the flagship of the family operation. This store was headed by Barry Goldwater's father, Baron. Barry was an indifferent student at Phoenix's Union High school, where he showed early leadership abilities when his classmates elected him as President of the Freshman class. His principal suggested that he might be happier elsewhere, so young Barry was sent by his family to finish his last four years at Staunton Military Academy in Virginia. There he won the medal as best all-around cadet and began his lifelong interest in the military. Although he hoped to attend the U. S. Military Academy at West point, his ill father insisted enroll at the University of Arizona. He completed only one year, dropping out to join the family department store business when his father died in 1929.
Changing the Republican Party
By 1964 Goldwater had won the Republican presidential nomination. He had begun his history-making campaign against Lyndon B. Johnson, who had assumed the presidential office after the 1963 assassination of John F. Kennedy (1917–1963 served 1961–63 see entry). As a presidential candidate, Goldwater became the spokesperson for the conservative wing of the Republican Party. He was much more conservative than previous Republican nominees. As such, his candidacy for the nation's top office threatened to split the Republican Party. He opposed federal programs and laws that took what he considered to be constitutionally protected freedoms away from Americans and private businesses. Goldwater believed individuals were responsible for themselves, and states ought to be free to design their own laws regarding their residents. Goldwater disagreed with the civil rights movement, the equal rights movement, and government aid for the poor. These movements urged the federal government to write laws in these areas of American lives. As senator he voted against the 1964 Civil Rights Act.
But Goldwater did not oppose all government power. He considered the threat of communism real and worth funding. Goldwater sought to expand the American military in order to aggressively control the threat of communism. During the presidential campaign he warned that Johnson was losing the Vietnam War (1954–75) to the communists. He called for the use of atomic bombs against the enemy.
Goldwater's views were embraced by those who feared the changes that some people were demanding in the 1960s. Some supporters of Goldwater feared that civil rights, feminism, and protests against the war would erode traditional morals and values that they associated with American life. Moreover, supporters of Goldwater worried that these changes would raise their taxes and that they might give some groups of Americans an unfair advantage over others.
Barry Goldwater And The Story Of The Secret Tattoo
I first learned about Barry Goldwater in my early teens. This was right about the beginning of my anti-establishment and bohemian phase. It would surprise some to think that a rebellious teenager might look to a conservative icon for inspiration, but Goldwater was certainly a rebel's rebel.
It was through Goldwater I first learned about the Rockefeller infested Trilateral Commission and the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). Goldwater, who ran for President against LBJ, was an early crusader against the growing danger of elitist globalists: "The Trilateral Commission is international&hellip.(and)&hellipis intended to be the vehicle for multinational consolidation of the commercial and banking interests by seizing control of the political government of the United States. The Trilateral Commission represents a skillful, coordinated effort to seize control and consolidate the four centers of power." Senator Barry Goldwater of Arizona is, of course, also the namesake of this news organization. Recently I learned something new and somewhat surprising about Senator Goldwater.
A tattoo artist friend of mine, Murray Sell, mentioned this weekend that Goldwater had a tattoo:
"There’s a secret Barry Goldwater tattoo that young conservatives working for the gov in DC get to pay homage. There are a bunch of congressmen who have it. You should look into it. Fun fact, I was best pals in my 20’s with the son of the guy who wrote his biography. Good family. Good people. Helped me a ton when I was growing up."
This intrigued me. Upon further investigation I learned that <a href https://tomtribby.wordpress.com/2012/02/06/the-smoki-people/" target="_blank">https://tomtribby.wordpress.com/2012/02/06/the-smoki-people/">Goldwater was tattooed in the tradition of "The Smoki people"</a> (pronounced "smoke eye"). The Smoki date all the way back to 1921 in Prescott, Arizona. The Smoki People were a faux indigenous tribe who performed at the Prescott Frontier Days Rodeo's "Way out West Show." Sharlott Hall, a historian from the region, even wrote a short book The Story of the Smoki People, a fictional history of the fictitious tribe.
The Smoki People were a social organization not unlike the Elk or Moose lodge. President Calvin Coolidge was an honorary member of the "tribe" as well. Coolidge, by the way, signed the Indian Citizenship Act which granted US citizenship to American Indians in 1924. Barry Goldwater was often an announcer at the Smoki People shows. Smoki members were marked by a small tattoo on the left hand that included three dots between the index finger and thumb. Goldwater's involvement with the Smoki owed much to his interest in the preservation of Native American and Southwestern US culture and art.
The Smoki finally died out in the early 1990's in part due to difficulty drawing new members but also due to complaints from the Hopi people who objected to the "sham ritual" which they felt was sheerly for entertainment rather than for spiritual or religious reasons. Barry Goldwater, known as "Mr. Conservative" emphasized the importance of small government and fiscal conservatism but was also an advocate for Native Americans and Native American culture.
For many people today, the term "conservative" evokes an image of clean-cut which isn't exactly compatible with body art such as tattoos. Goldwater, however, was a true conservative but not as interested in the social side of things. He even feared the "new right" was selling itself out to the "religious right" which would be exemplified in Jerry Falwell's "Moral Majority." If anything, Goldwater was a complex, even misunderstood figure.
Goldwater: The father of American conservatism
A half-century ago, Sen. Barry Goldwater strode to the podium of the Republican National Convention in San Francisco to accept his party’s presidential nomination.
He declared, “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vise.” Let me remind you further: “Moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.”
My dad set the stage for the resurrection of a passionate belief in liberty and redefined the Republican brand.
It is interesting these same words could be used to describe another effort to ensure the civil rights of all Americans regardless of race. Unfortunately, those words were distorted by the media and his critics.
In his book “Conscience of a Conservative,” published in 1960, Goldwater noted:
“The root difference between the Conservatives and the Liberals of today is that Conservatives take into account of the whole man, while Liberals tend to look only at the material side of man’s nature. The Conservative believes that man is in part, an economic, an animal creature but he is also a spiritual creature with spiritual needs and spiritual desires. Conservatism therefore looks upon the enhancement of man’s spiritual nature as the primary concern of political philosophy. Liberals, on the other hand, — in the name of concern for “human beings” — regard the satisfaction of economic wants as the dominant mission of society.”
It is interesting that my father’s good friend Jack Kennedy echoed my dad in his own speeches. While my dad lost the 1964 presidential race, he launched a movement that has dominated and influenced the body politic and government for the past 40 years.
I can still hear my dad explain his philosophy “Let me remind you a conservative is one who fights to expand individual liberty and resist the accumulation of power by those who claim they know best.”
It was Madison versus Jefferson as to the balance of power. Who should control? Who should dominate?
It is a struggle that has dominated the history of our country. John Maynard Keynes versus Milton Friedman, The New York Times versus The Wall Street Journal, the right versus the left, conservative versus liberal, MSNBC versus Fox, Republican versus Democrat.
The difference between a liberal and a conservative is that the liberal think we should be equal at the finish line while conservatives think we should be equal at the starting line.
That is the war, the classic struggle, going on in Congress and in America as we gather tonight.
I might also note that his belief that America and the free world will remain free only with a strong commitment to national defense. Clearly, with the record of the current president, we need a change in defense policy as well.
The conservative movement has been on a tortuous trail. It suffered defeat many times but came roaring back. With the overall huge victory in 2010 and 2014, I believe we are on the right path because we stuck to the message.
Now we look ahead to the 2016 presidential election. With 70 percent of the state legislatures in Republican hands and 36 Republican governors and control of the Senate and House, conservatives have an incredible responsibility to provide the leadership so lacking at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
In considering the challenges facing the new Republican majority in Congress, it is important to review my father’s observation that conservatives must present positive answers to national problems, not just condemn the answers provided by the left. He observed: “Our failure is the failure of Conservative demonstration. Though we Conservatives are deeply persuaded that our society is ailing and know that Conservatism holds the key to national salvation we seem unable to demonstrate the practical relevance of Conservation principles to the needs of the day.”
We have come together tonight to celebrate a powerful idea: liberty. We came tonight to recognize a movement: conservatism rooted in principles. We came together tonight as brothers and sisters to remember a man who had such a powerful influence on the two-party system and us.
With fond memories of battles we fought, friends we made and a philosophy we love, we salute our leader, Sen. Barry Goldwater.
Goldwater changed America for the better. He gave America a choice, not an echo. In our hearts, we know he was right. Goldwater was a man of principle, integrity and honesty. His ideas, his courage and his candor helped shape our national character, and I hope that his work will continue to be lived through the lives and dedications of the generations to come.
The conservative movement is a term that describes the process through which control of the Republican Party has been taken by people with strong feelings in favor of robust national defense, low taxes, minimum government regulation, and traditional social values.
During The Great Depression and World War II, the Republican Party nominated candidates for president who represented the liberal to moderate wing of the party, and especially its East Coast establishment. Conservatives tried unsuccessfully to nominate Senator Robert A. Taft of Ohio in 1952, but were frustrated when Dwight D. Eisenhower was chosen instead.
The breakthrough for the conservative movement came in 1964, when Barry Goldwater, an uncompromising conservative, was nominated. Although defeated by Lyndon B. Johnson in a landslide, Goldwater showed his followers that victory was possible.
The electoral breakthrough came in 1966, when Ronald Reagan defeated incumbent Pat Brown for the governorship of California. By 1976, Reagan had become the darling of the conservative movement, which attempted to win the nomination for him. It went instead to Gerald Ford, who occupied the White House at that time.
Four years later, however, Reagan gained the nomination. His conservatism split the party to the extent that John Anderson ran as an independent to represent the views of moderate Republicans. As the campaign got started after the conventions, Reagan trailed, but strong performances combined with voter unhappiness with Jimmy Carter carried him to victory in November 1980.
Reagan used the opportunity to initiate programs to rapidly build the American military. Although he also worked to whittle down the size of the federal government, his policies resulted in federal deficits which, at the time, were unprecedented in peacetime. Voters, however, approved of his style and Republicans enjoyed twelve years of control of the White House.
The conservative movement has resulted in a shift in the ideological base of the Republican Party. While still the clear choice of the wealthy classes, it has become the home to lower-class whites in the Deep South, whose loyalty to the Democratic Party after the Civil War gave rise to the phrase "Solid South." There still is a solid South, but rather than being solidly Democratic, it is now solidly Republican.
A Tribute to Barry Goldwater
And we of the VWOA lose our Honorary President. In fact, we lose the man who held the office longer than any of his distinguished peers including Guglielmo Marconi, Lee DeForest, David Sarnoff, and Herbert Hoover. We will miss him.
Barrys fascination with radio was lifelong, and like so many of us, it started with a crystal set which he constructed as a boy. He maintained a showcase amateur station that was also, by far, the best-known Military Affiliated Radio System (MARS) station not actually located on a military base. Barrys legendary generosity extended to letting many others, particularly young people, use his fine equipment, big antenna, and excellent location.
As an influential lawmaker he was a strong advocate for amateur radio, was a strong supporter of the 1964 amateur radio postage stamp, worked behind the scenes to assure amateur representation on international regulatory teams, and he was a force behind loosening the amateur regulations to include reciprocal licensing with many nations.
Barry was a strong advocate on liberalizing (truly a strange term to ever include in the same sentence with his name) the amateur rules, especially those to do with reciprocal licensing and third party traffic handling. In fact, it was in large part due to his pioneering views that the total rewriting of part 97 of the FCC regulations occurred under President Ronald Reagan.
Beside the amateur-radio-specific issues just mentioned, Barry was a strong voice in the Senate in support of a broad range of technology issues, both military and civilian. He expressed many times his belief that technology leadership, technology education, and technology investment were fundamental both to our nations economy as well as its defense,
The connection between Barry Goldwater and the VWOA spans more than three decades, not quite half the history of our organization. He joined the VWOA in 1966, fully qualifying as a veteran member for his military service as both pilot and radio operator in the Air Service, later the Air Force. In 1968 he accepted our highest award, the Marconi Gold Medal. Four years later, in 1972, he accepted the office of Honorary President. He held the office for 27 years.
Barry will certainly be remembered for his political views, but I am certain that he will be remembered even longer for his character.
His politics are well known. He lost the 1964 national presidential election, a loss universally attributed to his outspoken conservatism. He was lambasted at the time as too extreme only to find that his problem was not the extremity of his views so much as timing. President Reagan, one of the most popular presidents in history, ultimate ly ran and served on a platform of smaller government and greater personal responsibility which was modeled on Barry Goldwaters platform.
Barry was, in many ways, simply ahead of his time. Though a losing presidential candidate, he was also virtually single-handedly responsible for the redefinition of the power base of his own party, shifting it squarely away from the Northeast into the South and West. This power shift was in many ways directly responsible for the growing strength of his party in later years.
Although routed in the 1964 general election, Barry Goldwater will be remembered for a legacy of political achievement that escaped the man who defeated him for the White House. Both Colin Powell and General Norman Schwartzkopf have repeatedly credited much of the victory in Operation Desert Storm directly to the reorganization of the American military after Viet Nam.
Barry Goldwater and Sam Nunn of Georgia, together studied the operational problems with military command that plagued our forces in Viet Nam, and they worked tirelessly to change them in order to allow for much faster, must more flexible, and much more effective strategic and tactical decision making.
It may be one of the great ironies of American history that possibly Barry Goldwaters greatest single contribution to our nation may well be the revitalization of the military after the Viet Nam defeat. And Barry achieved this by studying the mistakes made in Viet Nam by the man who defeated him in the race for the White House Lyndon Johnson.
Goldwater received a tremendous amount of criticism for his Senatorial votes against the landmark Civil Rights legislation of the 1960s. The interesting thing is that he was anything but a bigot, anything but a racist. His opposition to the legislation stemmed from his fundamental belief in restricting the size, scope, and reach of federal power. He felt deeply that Washington should not legislate morality, should not control every lunch counter, bus, and classroom in the nation . . . even if the goal of the legislation, itself, was undeniably good and noble.
And Barry never missed an opportunity to say that he felt the goal of the Civil Rights legislation was beyond reproach. In his own life, he organized the Arizona Air National Guard which from day one was the first fully racially integrated National Guard unit in the country. He was also no stranger to anti-Semitic prejudice against himself, as the son of a Jewish businessman and a Christian mother. His favorite joke was the apocryphal story of Phoenixs most restricted country club. Barry claimed that he applied for membership when he was a young, successful businessman, but was refused because he was half Jewish. He applied again when he entered local politics and was turned down again. When he was elected to the Senate, he was turned down again. But in 1964, when it looked like there was a chance that he might become President of the United States, the club reconsidered how bad it would look to be the club that blackballed the President. So, Barry claims the club membership committee finally offered him membership . . . but only on the condition that he agreed to only play nine holes. Potential President or not, he was still half Jewish.
But Barry is best known for his character.Despite his often unpopular positions on issues, he was voted by his peers in the Senate, as "the most congenial man in the Senate." Upon his retirement, his colleagues on both sides of the aisle started the Goldwater Scholarship fund. He counted among his closest friends Hubert Humphrey as close to his political, philosophical opposite as one could find.
The New York Times of May 30, 1998 contained an eloquent editorial about Barry entitled "The Honorable Senator From Arizona . " It said, "Part of the reason for such fraternal good will was that Mr. Goldwater saw politics as a debate over ideas, not a blood sport for power. The other reason was that all sides knew he was one of those rare creatures on Capitol Hill who talked straight."
Barry was one of a kind outspoken political thinker, patriot, businessman, Air Force General, United States Senator, father, husband, grandfather, radio amateur, photographer, pilot, and like Marconi, DeForest, Hoover, and Sarnoff a great friend to the VWOA.
Mr. Conservative who was almost president
Though dubbed “Mr. Conservative” by his opponents and supporters, Goldwater was a far cry from the religion conservatives of modern America. His first priority was freedom and liberty in the real, libertarian, “free society” sense of these words. Some even consider him the forefather of the libertarian movement. Though he was a Republican and ran for president as such in 1964, he held those who would try to run the country on religious principles in contempt. He said:
I am a conservative Republican, but I believe in democracy and the separation of church and state. The conservative movement is founded on the simple tenet that people have the right to live life as they please as long as they don’t hurt anyone else in the process. 4
That quote is about as libertarian as it gets. But Goldwater was very loyal to his political party and started a bit of a revolution among the Republicans during his 5 terms as an Arizona Senator.
Goldwater rejected the New Deal set forth by FDR during the Great Depression. In classic libertarian fashion, he passionately opposed social welfare, regulation, and what he considered unnecessary taxation. Goldwater was often accused of being extreme, but didn’t consider it an insult, saying:
Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue. 5
As Goldwater’s political career wore on, religious conservatives were overtaking the party (Ronald Reagan for example) and Goldwater’s opposition to the combination of church and state caused some of his party members to call him a liberal. 6 But it wasn’t Goldwater that changed–he was quite consistent throughout his political career–society just changed around him.
Other interesting profiles