Their myth grew to such dimensionsnthat, on the fiftieth anniversary of theirnexecution, Governor Michael Dukakis ofnMassachusetts issued a lengthy proclamationndecreeing, among other things,nthat “any stigma and disgrace should benforever removed from the names ofnNicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti.”nIn the end Sacco and Vanzetti were vindicatednby the myth they had helped toncreate.nAlthough the myth of SenatornJoseph McCarthy is of more recent vintagenand quite different from that of Sacconand Vanzetti, it is probably even morenpowerful in our day. It may be summarizednsuccinctly in the words of Mur-n• ray Marder of the Washington Post, anman who reported on McCarthy in then1950’s:nCareers and families were destroyed,npeople committed suicide. Fear wasnin the atmosphere; you always had tonknow who you were talking to. . . .nAnybody who had been in public lifenwas vulnerable, and you had to thinknback through all your associations. Itnwas the closest we ever came to a realntotalitarian atmosphere.nAs for the reality, we might recall thenanti-McCarthy film. Point of Order,nwhich makes it clear that McCarthy’s colleaguesnin the Senate were not at all terrifiednof him—quite the opposite. Mc­nCarthy could not have done what he didnalone: he simply voiced a genuine concernnamong the citizenry over the possibilitynof treason in high places. Therenwas reason to wonder about this, whatnwith the loss of mainland China to thencommunists, the revelations of the AlgernHiss trial and, later, the outbreak of thenKorean War.nThe McCarthy myth, unlike that ofnSacco and Vanzetti, depended heavilynupon the media for its propagation, ifnonly because the mass media, includingntelevision, had become such a force innAmerican life by the 1950’s. McCarthy’sn”power” depended upon the media too:nBayley reports that when McCarthy diednin 1957 the New York Times asked its reportern”who would inherit McCarthy’snorganization,” only to be told there wasnno organization: the Senator had exercisednhis power almost entirely throughnthe media, and now that he was gonennothing would remain of it.nMcCarthy was aware of his dependencenon the media. Bayley remarks thatn”he had the instinct, if not the discipline,nof a newspaper reporter”; he knewnhow to give reporters good copy at thenright times (indeed, if we are to believenBayley, he sometimes even offered to saynwhatever the reporter interviewing himnwanted him to say). He generally likednreporters and sometimes failed to understandnwhy they took his attacks uponnthem seriously. “The essence of hisnstyle,” Bayley comments, was “repetition,nnot originality”; here again McCarthynshowed a grasp of the essence of massnjournalism. There was much of the showmannin McCarthy: he craved public attentionnand was too often flashily irresponsiblenin his accusations. But the factnthat he dealt with a serious issue of publicnpolicy—if not always for serious reasonsn—helps account for the vimlence of thenopposition he aroused at the time andnthe negative power of the McCarthynmyth since then.nUsing Senator McCarthy as a casenstudy, Bayley considers the question ofnhow the news media should treat politi­nIn the Mailncal phenomena which, by and large, theynconsider harmful. Conservative journalistnWillard Edwards, Bayley says, believesnthat McCarthyism “killed anti-communismnfor years”—although it alsonstunted the communist movement—nand that the anti-McCarthy press wouldnhave been best advised to ignore hisncharges and activities. But nearly the entirenpress rejected that approach, so thenproblem became how to cover him.nSome newspapers—for example thenBaltimore Sun and the Washington Postn—gave him extensive coverage, perhapsnin the hope that he would discredit himselfnin the public mind. The prestigenpress of the East Coast tended to benagainst McCarthy, but many othernpapers—and also the wire services, whichnhad to satisfy clients of quite varied viewsn—initially reported on McCarthy asnstraight news, adhering to what one journalistnhas described disgustedly asn”phony objectivity,” that is, reportingnMcCarthy’s accusations as though theynwere true, without any rebuttal or interpretation.nThe tactic of generous exposurendid not work well, however, becausenMcCarthy was raising a genuinenissue.nThe press then resorted, Bayleynthinks, to what we know now as “advocacynjournalism,” or, as Bayley phrases itnapprovingly, “McCarthyism gave usnMary McGrory.” (McGrory covered Mc­nCarthy at the time for the WashingtonnHermes: Literature, Philosophy, Science by Michel Serres, edited by Josue V. Harari andnDavid F. Bell; The Johns Hopkins University Press; Baltimore, Maryland. A collection ofnessays on literature, philosophy and epistemology by an important contemporary Frenchnthinker.nSuperstock by Stuart M. Speiset; Everest House Publishers; New York. A novel of intriguenabout saving American capitalism, making it compatible with Marxism and avoiding nuclearnconfrontation with the U.S.S.R.nThe First Year: A Mandate for Leadership Report edited by Richard N. Holwill; The HeritagenFoundation; Washington, D.C. An assessment of the first year of the Reagan Administrationnwhich is being used by Reagan managers to improve their performance.n”NATO and Neutralism” The Heritage Lectures No. 8 by Stephen Haselet and WernernKaltefleitet; The Heritage Foundation; Washington, D.C. An analysis of the difficulties ofnNATO by two leading European political analysts and their suggestions for means by whichnthe damage NATO has sustained in recent years might be repaired.nnnJuly^ugttst 198Sn