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tv   If Not Us Who  CSPAN  May 14, 2016 4:00pm-5:01pm EDT

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wh t "if not us, who -- who?" it is about an hour. [applause] thank you, john. good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. nationale two bills at review, and in the conservative movement. buckley, a radiant, shooting star, who lit up the sky, and ill rusher, a never-wavering northstar, by which conservatives learned to
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chart their political course. many have written about william f buckley junior, that irresistible renaissance man, but nobody but david frisk has given us an in-depth portrait of william a.ill, rusher, who among other salutary and contributions, played a pivotal role in the life of a national draft goldwater committee. and that was critical, because if there had been no draft goldwater committee, there would have been no presidential candidate barry goldwater in 1964. if there had been no candidate goldwater in 1964, there would have been no president-elect, ronald reagan, in a 1980. it was goldwater, you see, what famous time for
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choosing, the tv address that made him a political star overnight, and made his run for governor of california, and eventually, president of these united states. david recounts how bill rusher shored up the goldwater committee with -- when money ran short and the spirit sacked. youngully guided americans for freedom in his early, chaotic days. some order and discipline against the blithe spirits who ran "national review." he had the tv program "the advocates." ronald reaganned when other conservatives were somewhat skeptical about the actor turned politician. bill rusher loved american wines,, traveling "national lands, and
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he said, often the most exasperating people are -- this is a splendid, overdue il graffiti of bill rusher. -- dr.k is a former teaching at the alexander center in new york. pleaseand gentlemen, give a warm welcome to dr. david frisk. [applause] dr. frisk: thank you, dr. edwards, or the warm introduction for me, and dr. rusher.
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can everyone here all right? i suspect there is a very wide range in this room of familiarity and relative rusher,arity with bill who was a publisher of "national review," for 31 years, almost from the beginning. hadan also be said to have a half-century long career in american politics. with something of a privileged, ringside, or front row seat. he never ran for public office, neverheld public office, really founded anything on his own, as a number of conservative leaders did. he never controlled his own institution. put it in my
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introduction, "if not us, who? william rusher, national review, and the conservative movement," which was published last april, he was at the edge of the limelight. of people knew very well who he was, a lot of people know a lot less about him. but, as people became more aware there was ausher, general agreement among the segment oftious american conservatives, and we can see how fractious it can be, such as in the recent election. there was wide agreement among libertarians, purists, pragmatist, that bill rusher really knew what he was doing. one of his great achievements was to give movement from the early
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1960's up until the 1990's, by which time he had semi retired, more confidence than i think they otherwise would have had. that there really was a conservative movement, and that , ifeally was moving imperfectly. years, aeen in recent lot of doubts about whether the conservative movement still exists anymore. some doubt whether it even deserves to exist anymore, whether it has destroyed itself. but there have been people all along who have said things like that. one of the things rusher stood for most prominently and was, the belief that we conservatives all have to and be together and keep being together. thatost obvious cliche
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comes to mind, and others have memorably, is to not let the perfect be the enemy of the good. not miss the forest for the trees. most are not the innovating or exciting messages, but it is very important to have a few people at or near the top of the conservative movement's leadership who believe in and preach these things, and who asked people and their fellow activists and conservative intellectuals to remain focused to win a majority of the american people, and to govern. review," a very intellectual magazine throughout its existence, and even more so
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in its early years in the 1950's and 1960's. billry much needed buckley, managing editor for scylla buckley, and every other acknowledgedthere, that they needed a man just like bill rusher to serve as a political eyes and ears, a linkical counselor, a "-typen "national review people, the practical people, and the politicians. meantiticians, he also people like f clinton white, who drafted the goldwater campaign. rusher was something of a
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politician, a practitioner of actual politics. rusher placed a tremendous value on these people. trying, withways some success, to get the more philosophical conservatives. a classic example of being, buckley himself, to appreciate that sort of career, that sort of individual, that sort of effort. a lot of people will find in the book, and i'm sure some of you a good deal of back-and-forth between publisher and in-house political counselor rusher, who have full privileges, by the way, of speaking out on any issue, officially or unofficially. mean in they, i meetings they held, which could be long and interesting. he had full privilege of speaking out on any issue,
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editorial, anything involving national political positions, the magazines tone, what is less important. role,yed an editorial though not officially. at times, they got tired of listening to him. but, if you read about rusher or want to formulate a question about him, remember, this is another world, technologically. until he retired in 1988. the successor publisher said it was still operating in the and's, with carbon paper secretaries who were treated as secretaries. polite term is a for sexism. the more important term is
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carbon paper. fan ofd not have been a social media himself, were he alive and active today, but he would appreciate it. to get back to the point, it is an important one. this was an era where people communicated on paper. and they communicated at length on paper. resource a tremendous for my research at the library where his papers are. is sufficient interest in the rusher papers among scholars who are interested in the development of the conservative movement, who i think more often than not, are liberals. , that wereer papers moved several years ago from the satellite location out in suburban maryland to the actual james madison building on the other side of the hill, that is how much interest there has been in the rusher papers. although, mine is the only book about him, and as far as i know,
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will be the only book about him. these people communicated to each other on paper, and that is a lot of what my book is based on. plus, it extensive interviews with rusher and significant interviews with mr. buckley. they were very candid with each other, rusher and buckley in particular. judgmentsiffering about what positions "national on,ew" should take or focus he mentioned the importance of the goldwater campaign for the future of the conservative movement. i don't think there is time or need to stress that to this audience any further than it already has been. it was a very seminal event. more than anyone, rusher
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persuaded goldwater to at least remain open to the possibility of a candidacy in early 1963, when he did not want to. he kept the goldwater campaign , when an associate was ready to give up, for a variety of reasons, including financial. one of the great lessons of rusher's career, is that he did not believe in giving up, ever. buse was always another coming along in 10 or 15 minutes. the sun would come up the next morning. and there was always something to do. what if the people who knew rusher well as a young, conservative activist in the 1960's, rusher than being in his late 30's or about 40, but it seemed to him in his interactions with young americans for freedom, that rusher had an extra 10 hours a
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day. someone else said he seemed to be the most organized man in the movement. now, it was a little easier for rusher to play that kind of very role.tic, very focused always on, all the time. best, giving it his always looking good, always speaking well, always stressing well. -- dressing well. and if not always right, always persuasive, always someone you wanted to listen to. that easy to develop reputation perhaps, if you do not have a family. he never married, never had children. somebody suggested to me very early in my research that rusher was married to the movement, i think there is a good deal of truth to that.
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there was a limited number of people who can play that life and that role. but the point is, that rusher did it. he was a graduate of harvard law school, graduated in 1948. he worked at a major corporate , an old, major firm. but he was really bored by corporate law practice. he describes it in his first book, published in 1968, not an autobiography, but there is an autobiographical chapter that is quite interesting. he says, well, there were all these silent victories and mute defeats and quiet conversations in these boardrooms, and he wanted more action than taha. thatved politics so much in some way, shape, or form, he had to do it full-time.
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he quit the law firm in early went somewhere near the russell building, and joined the very important anti-communist investor named robert morris. robert morris' importance and anti-communist investigations of the 1950's were apparently so significant that whittaker in aers said to buckley letter around that time, that morris really accomplished most of what joe mccarthy is credited with, in terms of useful -- useful and constructive anti-communist activities. the number two lawyer on the committee. and believedthy,
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he is been unfairly railroaded by the liberal establishment. ofy much along the lines what stan evans later argued in "blacklisted by history." rusher before he was part of "national review'was part of a of very hard and professional anti-communists. really got himat into the conservative movement. that is what caused him to transition from generic includednism, which what i describe as a "just win, baby," attitude. and there is a lot that can be said for that. of being willing
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to lose even a presidential election, if it was a constructive sort of lost that one could take pride in, ala goldwater 1964. one that would plant seeds for the future. was not thinking that way, it was just, win baby. there were similarities, in the 1948 campaign, there are similarities to the other campaign on our side and the other side. rusher sees that. eisenhowerknows that is not going to be a great champion of conservative causes, and knew he would not be that aggressive and anti-communist, but he wanted to win. to keep this reasonably concise, but to finish the thought, because it is important, rusher
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that moderate republican administration under dwight eisenhower, was president for eight years, just was not ideological enough, anti-communist enough of -- at home or abroad, rusher still believe there was a significant communist threat within the united states. more and more documentation of that has come out in the last 20 years after the opening of the x soviet archives. buckley was a couple years younger than rusher. he wrote a book in 1951 after he graduated from yale. rusher was a graduate of princeton, pre-war, and during the war. yaleey says he gail is -- is insufficiently respectful of
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religion, despite its heritage, against elite academe in america. quasi-socialist. i think the greater affinity with buckley can be seen in buckley and his brother-in-law's 1954 book, "mccarthy and his enemies." they said he was a little rough, may be poor in his judgment, but he is been treated unfairly. that is exactly where rusher is in 1954 through 1956, in the years where he turns from generic young republican to hard movement
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conservatives -- conservativism. it already existed, but was disorganized. term might be entrepreneurial, individualistic. had another way of describing it, people popping out like rabbits, not knowing where they were going. we might see a little of this today now and then. rusher is absolutely thrilled to aar there will be conservative, weekly magazine. when he hears about "national review" being in the works, he becomes a charter subscriber before it comes out. he meets buckley a couple weeks after the magazine starts. year and a half in washington on a subcommittee where he remains in touch with
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buckley and that circle. he joins the magazine in mid-1957. he was not interested in the business side of the magazine, which was his technical and real responsibility, keeping it a flow, finding more subscribers, advertising. they needed someone like that. and he was pretty good at that. although there is evidence that after several years, he kind of neglected it because he was so into the political side. as i said, he comes into "national review" with a kind of writ from editor buckley that he will have full, free speech rights, rights of argumentation and advocacy within the internal deliberations of the magazine. and that is the good part of the book.
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although i would not say that is the majority, a good part of it, and it is interesting. rusher advising buckley and the other editors. how it should deal with the john birch society at the time, how it should deal with troubles with the young americans for freedom, a very conservative organization. dr. edwards, i believe, was the first editor, or one of the early editors of his paper in the 1960's. he started very young and has known rusher for very long. rusher would advise the national review people, and buckley, who , what was going on out there among conservatives. what problems there were in conservative politics. what good things were happening, what ought to be supported.
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buckley, is interested in -- developing and a highintaining reputation for "national review ." for a thoughtful magazine. at one point, he writes to colleagues and says no, it was an editorial in 1960. he says to readers, but would have said equally to his colleagues, our job is not to make tactical politics, it is to think and write and occasionally, to mediate. -- to play offer role ofg of a broker's among conservatives, in whatever they are conflicted about. buckley sees the need for that, rusher is ideally suited to help review" in that
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role. factions atwo national review. overstate theo conflict there. there was a tremendous amount of respect that they all had for each other. fundamental agreement was on its importance. they all believed they had important duties. but they disagreed about the right approach, tone, and focus for the magazine. factions, it is a perfectly good word if you can of backstabbing or underhanded approaches out of your heads, it was not like that, as far as i can tell. but there were real arguments.
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were committed to paper. , billlla buckley, sister, passed away recently, unfortunately, she was the den mother of the conservative movement. " was annational review incubator for young conservatives. james, a brilliant, ex- trotskyist, the three of them really believed in the importance of "national review 's" intellectual reputation. that thisved early on is a magazine that should be on
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policymakers, reallycs, senators, important people, whether they were conservatives or not. they believed in something of an elite strategy. it was not so much as to make conservative -- conservativism palatable as powerful, to get people to listen to the conservative it viewpoint, whether it is on anti-communism, the government, constitutionalism, are what today is called social conservativism, more likely then, it would recall traditional conservativism. there has always been social conservativism.
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rusher had a very important row like, a man named frank meyer. meyer remains sufficiently respected and known among at least the older generation of conservatives, but there is a frank meyer society here in , a group of leaders who keep his memory alive. monday night i will be speaking to them. meyer has been described by rusher as the engine of the conservative movement. was in ex-communist, as rusher was. a passionate, activists. that meyer told me had once been a militant communist, and a militant republican.
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he said, they are not all that different, it except for what they believe. rusher had a tremendous attraction to and respect for political obsession. meyer was both intellectually obsessed, he had a house literally full of books, it is hard to imagine or describe it. absolutely everywhere. extremely intellectual but also extremely political. , the longtime chairman of the american conservative union put it to me, , yourvatives in the 1960's go to the midwest, and perhaps two weeks later you get busted raininged by the phone -- ringing at 2:00 in the morning, asking why he did not do this?
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i think that particular style of leadership or mentoring would probably not be to welcome among conservatives today. i'm sure there were people then you thought it was a bit much, even if they tremendously admired meyer. but there were people like that back then who thought the cause was so important that they could, at least meyer could, he would have no qualms about calling someone up at 2:00 in the morning. he was nocturnal, anyway. rusher did not have that type of a regular schedule himself. he was more organized than that. but, he loved that spirit. allies whor were believed that "national review" should be as political as possible. let me say word and then i will take your questions, about rusher's last two decades of "national review."
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the 1970's and 1980's. the intense arguments and discussions within "national to,ew" that i have alluded were not primarily in the 1960's, as the conservative movement was still gelling. rusher's focus is initially on the possibility of actually replacing the republican party with a new, conservative party. i found a letter in which he abouto a friend, this was 1975, the problem with the republican party is not that it is not conservative enough, it is that it is not big enough. again, he wanted to win.
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and the republicans after watergate in the mid-1970's were terribly ashamed. i won't recite the details, but a lot of them felt that they were back where they were in the 1930's. rusher wants to take this to start a new conservative party, not rigidly conservative, but consciously conservative. one in which the liberal wing of the republican party would not be present, and therefore, would not have the veto power that he thought they had. was,lieved the key to this one, possibly not the most important thing, to moderate conservativism a little bit, recognize the needs of the little guy. but also, to welcome social
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conservativism, the populist issues. southerners, but were then known as conservative democrats, people who later became reagan democrats. rusher was one of the first to note the size and importance of that voting block. first and mosthe effective advocates of bringing it into the republican party. headvised reagan to do this, knew both reagan and the first , heident bush pretty well knew reagan since the mid-1960's. advised first reagan and then vice president bush years later, to do this. i don't think reagan really needed -- i'm not sure reagan needed to be told that, but it is encouraging to hear it from
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someone he respected as much as he respected rusher. rusher also wanted reagan to be the head of this new conservative party. to make a long story short, reagan refuses, probably prudently. most liberal scientist, and i haven't people in political science will tell you that the third-party has to be big on a national level, probably with a superstar, like reagan. inonce reagan refused mid-1975 to join this third-party project rusher got itng and wrote a book about, was probably curtains for that particular idea. but, rusher had succeeded in getting conservatives to think more about the need to expand the republican party, and for the republican party to be more coherent. not so ideologically coherent that it was willing to force
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elections. i think rusher was passed that past that phase of his political development by then. reagan wased that if not going to head it, it was probably not going to get too far. but he stuck with it. the full details are in the book, chapter 13. but he came to see in the late 1970's but it really was possible for a guy like reagan to win the republican nomination. t-1 reagan did, ever send it in 1980, and had, in rusher's view, totally successful presidency, rusher remained an absolute republican party loyalist. rightly or wrongly. that is another interesting lesson. a man, who at one time had been a third-party advocate comes
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back to a more conventional political view, although he was a strong conservative. in closing, i just want to say two words as rusher's significance as a symbol among conservatives. he was a very elegant man. not particularly tall or athletic, things that buckley was. but, he was wonderfully articulate. he always spoken perfectly formed a sentence, both in public and in private conversations. he was well dressed, loved fine wine and opera, traveled all over the world, went to the great hotels of the world. this is a little unusual for us semi-populist conservative, and the guy as ideological as he was. perhaps leading conservatives today could use a few more people like that. it was hard for a manhattan rusher,to say
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conservatives are hicks, and this and that. you could not say that about buckley or rusher. sense,reinforced that " theyt "national review are sophisticated people, if you can stand their viewpoint. the younger conservatives tended to admire that, he tried to bring them along in that kind of style. also, as dr. edwards referred to, rusher was a major conservative debater for a while. most prominently on a pbs show called "the advocates." it was a debate show, he did extremely well. a lot of people would watch that and say, we can do that, too. we can be as good as he is. go muchot had time to
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into his mentoring role with young conservatives, but he loved to advise them. he loved hearing about what they were doing. like people who just sat around and talked. or, have patience for sitting around and talking. of now senior conservatives will tell you they knew rusher either personally or by reputation, but he spent a lot of time for -- with them, give them great advice. rusher remained very proud of that. he retired to san francisco, he loved the climate, the relative sophistication of san francisco, he had fallen in love with it in the 1950's. he lived there for the last 20 years of his life. and i will leave you with this quote, which gives a sense of
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.usher's attitude in perhaps my last interview sanh him, he said to me " francisco has a dreadful reputation among conservatives. always yorkers are raising the subject with me, mostly new yorkers. i just dismiss them. i am not the least bit interested in what the majority of people in san francisco think. i like the food, the weather, the ambience, it is where i want to live. if they want to live there too, the liberals, good luck." her for your questions, insofar as we have time for them. [applause] dr. edwards: if you will just raise your hand, we have a gentleman with a microphone. if you would please give your name, and then ask your question.
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hopefully a question, and not a statement. >> you mentioned how rusher wanted to take a more populist , do you see that as a potential lesson to be applied today? dr. frisk: i'm not comfortable trying to say what rusher would say today. but it is clear that he always on, and from the 1970's
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never lost his believe, that populist and social conservativism and those voters were absolutely central to conservative success. that their issues had not been dealt with by the official republican party, not sufficiently respected. votes, just those as he wanted southern votes in the early 1960's, and advocated that. but he also believed that social conservativism and other populist issues had to be expressed in a responsible and thoughtful way. an example you can find in a footnote in one of the late chapters is a column he wrote about abortion in 1981. likes called, something
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the problem and strength of right to life. he sees a balance there. he says i am one of you, i agree with you on this issue, but we must realize how smug and even defensive we sometimes appear to others who don't share our viewpoint. we have to be moderate in our presentation of it. i am confident in saying that russia would absolutely disagree with those who now say, in the wake of romney's loss, that we should jettison social conservativism. but again, he would remind social conservatives that there are a lot of people who disagree with you, and you have to speak to them effectively. does that help? >> is light understand it, and i think i got this from the
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biography of frank meyer, there was also an ideology dispute when "national review" got started. for celeb and james garner and saying the goal of the conservative movement is to fight communism, and not really caring about the welfare state, and people like frank myers saying no, we have to shrink fighting communism, but we need to shrink government first. and that rusher, among other things, acted as a mediator between those two factions. sorry, i did not get the last half sentence there. >> one of rusher's roles was to mediate the two factions. i got the sense that priscilla burnam and burn them -- were distant ancestors of
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neoconservatives. course, being a fusionist,d -- whatever disagreements. there were questions about what conservatives should do about the welfare state. roleondering what rusher's was in this ideological debate. dr. frisk: very good question. saidld amend something you i don't believe there was much conflict within "national review" about what position to take on the welfare state, but there was some. rusher's primary concern. concern, in terms of ideology, was that "national
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review" must be ideological. that the exact positions it took would often be secondary, but that in so far as it had certain , itefs on these issues should be really serious about holding other conservatives, and especially other public officeholders to account in holding leadership, and supporting candidates who are likely to be solid on those issues. burnam, did in fact say in connecticut in 1965, that it was inevitable. the nature of the health care in every, made it ball. our role as conservatives, he work as to make of this
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well as possible. does that sound familiar? it was good that there was a voice their saying that. buckley was for free market, though. he was actually more interested in economics than a rusher was. was aon't think there dispute about the welfare state, to the extent there was, burnham would be an advocate of accommodating it. rusher was not as libertarian or small government as meyer. but in general, the two of them lined up. >> what about priscilla buckley? dr. frisk: i simply don't know about that. what is perfectly clear, is that were very close, and a professional sense. just meshedalities together pretty well.
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they were both pretty calm people. they both believed in a very high literary quality to the and in keeping things that just did not measure up intellectually or seemed to extreme out of the magazine. rusher was a little more accommodating to the hard right in that respect. that there is any real conflict between her scylla buckley, the managing editor for about 30 years, late 1950's through 1980's, when russia was there, they overlapped. everyone liked her and respected her. she was not involved in personal sources of conflict. there was a terrible personal conflict between burnham and meyer, and an ideological conflict, as well.
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a neither of them ever quit, which is to their credit. more, maybe? or i can do more. have i sufficiently conveyed -- awant to make sure i give couple more clever quotes and debate quotes from rusher to share with you his vibrant personality and cleverness. an important part of the story read -- story. go ahead. >> you must have had conversations with mr. rusher about reagan's second term, when he considered the reagan presidency and unmitigated success. reservationsy about the second term developments on contra, and reagan's alleged declining
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intellectual capabilities? apologize, i was wearing earplugs earlier today, could you repeat the question for me? loud. >> the question was regarding whether he had any reservations about reagan's second term, in terms of his mental capacity the clan or the iran-contra issues. -- mental capacity declining, or the iran-contra issues. rusher was one of his most consistent defenders during the reagan administration. kaiser -- brrr
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me, when said to reagan was elected, rusher decided he would descend him every day. his reasoning was, that in terms of presidents, this is the best guy we are going to get. it will never be better, and it will never be as good. so you have to back this guy up on everything. he had some concerns about chief of staff, james baker, who would come from the other wing of the party, of course. he question whether someone like that could really put his heart into eight reaganite program. couple years after that, rusher is very upset about some technical pr mistakes on the part of committee case and
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people in the white house, and says, so-and-so ought to be fired. it did not happen. concern in giving advice to reagan, which he did not do a lot of, his main concern seemed to be, let's make sure we are effectively communicating with the american people and getting around the liberal media, which was a big bugbear, and rightly so. with iran-contra, he followed it with a dutiful interest. i don't think he had a great emotional investment in it. he was a syndicated con list, and wrote a number of articles taking the president's side. it came down to this. maybe reagan had been guilty of a few errors of judgment are, but says it seems to come down oran overly solicitous passionate attitude toward getting the hostages back. and he said, but that is a crime
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of the heart. ablenald reagan has to be -- have to have a weakness, i am glad it is that one. and he was dammed if you was going to let or enable the democrats and the media to get a republican president. >> i am going to risk having another what would rusher think of it question. i'm wondering what rusher would have to say about "national ," a still respected publication, it seems increasingly to be positioned, i don't want to say more moderate, but a slightly less combative stance, compared to others.
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i would be interested to hear what you think rusher would have to say about that. to begin with, rusher any active, ,easonably responsible vigorous, fearless, , either forsm moreciated talk radio, the controversial aspects of fox news. he watched fox news. he specifically admired rush limbaugh, even 20 years ago, before rush limbaugh was quite as much of a household name as he is now. i asked him about national ,"view -- "national review which for some time, since 2005, it had been more reportorial and
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news-oriented then events-oriented than it once was. there were people who did not really like that. rusher said he was fine with that, he was for that. , and ih, he also told me don't believe this was a that when buckley himself retired from the actual -- itship of the magazine was in stages. them, that he told it was very important is his " notthat "national review be just another conservative magazine. that it was important for it to maintain its identity and its brand. it is clear from that, and he specifically mentioned its catholic tinge.
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veryey's family was all catholic. rusher was not catholic but respected it as part of the magazine's sensibility. withd no real beefs "national review" in its later years, that he did think there were some younger people who probably should no more history or more of the right wing side of history. but he had kind of a relaxed attitude toward that. he did not have utopian expectations for how much people would know or how ideological they would be. his older years, even more so than earlier, he was very much a team player. i think that comes up clearly in the book. anyone else? wit? example of rusher if you know the name
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one of the sorensen, great wordsmiths of the kennedy i don't know if he ran for senator of new york, but he certainly tried to in 1970. rusher in 1970 is really in his prime, about 47 years old at that point. he has been a staple on talk for about theork last 10 years, and he really knows what he is doing, and loves to debate liberals on the air. there is a man who is still alive and i believe still does the radio show in new york, a very prominent host who greatly admired rusher. he had the two of them on. ofaccuses "national review"
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racism and extremism, and associate that with nixon and lumps it alle, and together. not an intellectually impressive performance. and rusher just goes after him and keeps going after him, and yourly says, based on performance tonight, you may think you are qualified to run for senate of new york, but based on your hysterical performance tonight, you would not be elected dogcatcher. and sorensen says, it seems to me mr. rusher, you are being rather hysterical. and rusher says yes, but i am not running for senate. [laughter] he knew when to give just a little, but make the guy look even worse. show,r on the farber south africa was already an issue for many liberals.
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i sure had not yet been there, but somebody said, a liberal opponent said, have you been to south africa? rusher said, no, i have not been to south africa, but you must have been to south africa, or be making such heavy weather of it. what you think is so important for us to know? so we turned a weakness into a strength. again, don't give an inch. turn it around. is not the politics of personal structure, but it is a politics of personal one-upsmanship. he believed in the battle of ideas, but understood it was more than that. for which anole drama in politics. and a final rusher quote off the top of my head. buckley loved to speak. he also it one point visited the soviet union. " they "national review, went in a group in the winter of
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1975 or 1976. no, because they don't have the right to grant permission. i am not going to ask the communists for permission to do anything, not even to visit their country. he waited for them to be thrown out, and he did. buckley,e once said to that i would no more go to the soviet union on vacation than i would if hitler had permitted me to ski in austrian helps during world war ii. buckley took some exception to that. and it is a rather specialized point of view. it may have handicapped me a bit, but i stuck with it. [applause] thank you. >> on history bookshelf, here from the country's best-known american history writers of the last decade, every saturday at four clock p.m. eastern.
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and you can watch any of our programs at any time. you are watching american history tv all weekend, every weekend on c-span3. next, santa clara university history professor nancy unger discusses women rights activists belle la follette who was politically active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. unger is the author of "belle la follette," which tells the story of this journalist, suffragist, and pacifist. she campaigned alongside her husband and son. the humanist association of the greater sacramento area hosted this event. it is about an hour. >> today's speaker asked me if i could give her only a brief introduction. her subject is belle la follet


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