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Eisenhower’s Modern Republicanism

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  1. Eisenhower’s Modern Republicanism • 1952: Frustration w/Korea & Red Scare led to GOP POTUS takeover • WW2 hero Eisenhower elected easily • VP Nixon anti-communism & corruption • “Ike” vowed to go to Korea & personally end the war DDE did go to Korea, overturned UN battle plan, & threatened China w/nuclear war to get armistice signed in 1953

  2. Eisenhower’s Modern Republicanism •  gov’t spending & balanced budget • Continued many New Deal programs • Affluent postwar “good life” dependent upon a strong Cold War foreign policy “I’m conservative when it comes to money and liberal when it comes to human beings”

  3. Eisenhower’s Modern Republicanism • In 8 yrs as POTUS, DDE had modest domestic record: • Social security & minimum wage increased • Federal Housing Admin helped finance building & purchasing of suburban homes • Created Dept of Health, Education, & Welfare US economy avoided spiraling inflation & brought prosperity to more Americans

  4. Eisenhower’s Modern Republicanism • Interstate Highway System: • Hwy Act (1956) created 41,000 miles to connect major U.S. cities • Helped promote national defense, interstate trade, & vacation travel

  5. The Republicans in Power “Have you no decency, Mr. McCarthy?” • Re: McCarthyism – Ike provided “just enough rope to hang himself” in 1954 • Televised “Army hearings”: US saw McCarthy’s style & fact-less attacks • Sen censured McCarthy & his “communist” attacks quickly died “I am not going to get into a [peeing] contest with a skunk”

  6. Postwar American Society

  7. An Affluent Society The Marshall Plan Economy grew from crippling depression to highest standard of living in world history in just 1 generation The Korean War • Postwar boom caused by • Desire for consumer goods (suppressed in 1930s & 40s) • Cold War gov spending  • Baby boom & movement to the suburbs • Affluence led to shift from individualism to conformity Hi-fi record players Refrigerators Cars with automatic transmissions Filter cigarettes TVs

  8. TV in the 1950s “The Milton Berle Show” “I Love Lucy” • $64,000 Question • 21 Questions • Bonanza • The Untouchables • I Love Lucy • 1950s TV networks TV replaced radio & magazines as the primary conveyer of American consumer culture

  9. Birthrate, 1940-1970 The late 1940s & 1950s experienced the “baby boom”

  10. Life in the Suburbs • Highways / rapid growth of suburbs: • Cookie-cutter American life • McDonald’s • Cars, grocery stores, malls • Nuclear family, not extended family • “White flight” to suburbs left behind largely black urban cores

  11. A Suburban Case Study: Levittown, New York Grew to 17,000 sold homes in 1951 Begin in 1947 with 4,000 rental homes to veterans

  12. Southdale Shopping Center, Minnesota— the 1st enclosed, air-conditioned shopping mall

  13. Areas of Greatest Growth • Affluence & rapid growth of suburbs also led to: • Increased church membership • Public school enrollment  • College as a legitimate goal for middle class

  14. New Students Taking Advantage of the G.I. Bill Juvenile Delinquency Movies of the 1950s

  15. The Music of the 1950s • Music of early 50s dominated by doo-wop • Rock n’ roll quickly struck a chord with young listeners: • Black artists: Ray Charles, Chuck Berry, Fats Domino, & Little Richard • White artists: Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, Buddy Holly, & Elvis Presley

  16. Critics of the Consumer Society • Some criticized US culture: • William Whyte’s Organization Man & David Riesman’s Lonely Crowd criticized US conformity • Jack Kerouac & the Beats (Beatniks) emerged as new counter-culture by refusing to conform to 1950s culture Led to 60s counter-culture

  17. Beat Artists (Beatniks) “City Lights” in San Francisco was a hotbed for Beat artists • Find images

  18. Abstract Expressionism Mar Jackson Pollock Mark Rothko

  19. Eisenhower Wages the Cold War

  20. Eisenhower & the Cold War • Unusually well-prepared to be a Cold War president • Foreign policy goals were to: • Strong stand against Communism • Threaten “massive retaliation”w/nukes • Covert CIA operations • Reduce defense spending / relax Cold War tensions WW2 military experience in Europe & Asia Pragmatic & well organized Chose hard-liner John Foster Dulles to be Sec of State Excellent diplomat & politician

  21. Massive Retaliation Massive retaliation – civilian targets rather than military ones • Ike wanted “more bang for the buck”: • Nuclear weapons cheaper than conventional armed forces • “Massive retaliation” strategy made using nuclear weapons unlikely • Massive retaliation offered no intermediate course of action if diplomacy failed Brinksmanship – using threats of nuclear war as diplomatic strategy

  22. Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBMs)

  23. What are the stakes of war? Massive Retaliation? Mutual Assured Destruction?

  24. Massive Retaliation China didn’t know if he was bluffing so they backed off • 1954: DDE used hardline approach to stop Chinese expansion in Asia: • Attempts to take over islands near Taiwan led DDE to threaten nuclear war if China didn’t stop • DDE hoped pressure would drive a wedge between USSR & China …and refusal of USSR to aid China helped create a rift by end of the 1950s

  25. Suez War • Suez Canal (Egypt) built by UK & France – open to entire world • Egypt wanted to build Aswan Dam along the canal • Needed financial aid to build it

  26. Suez War • Egypt asked US for help in building dam, also asked USSR • US pulled their offer when they discovered Egypt talked to USSR

  27. Suez War • Egypt offended – said no other country could use the canal • UK/France/Israel nearly fought with Egypt, US led negotiations

  28. Suez War • DDE didn’t want USSRtoattacksohethreatened nuclear war • MASSIVE RETALIATION “If those fellows start something, we may have to hit ‘em…if necessary, with everything in the bucket”

  29. Eisenhower Doctrine Like Monroe Doctrine (and Roosevelt Corollary) in Latin America, US emerged as police power in a new part of the world • Suez Crisis revealed vulnerability of Middle East to Communism – DDE responded: • 1957:EisenhowerDoctrine US armed forces will protect Middle East from Communist aggression • 1957: DDE sent military to Lebanon to halt Communism & install pro-Western gov

  30. Covert Actions • DDE’s administration used covert CIA acts to expand US control: • 1953: CIA overthrew Mohammed Mossadegh (Iran) for US-friendly shah • 1954: CIA overthrew leftist regime in Guatemala • 1959: CIA took a hard line against new Cuban dictator Fidel Castro These interventions led to anti-US hostilities in Middle East & Latin America

  31. The Effects of Sputnik • “Space race” intensified Cold War • 1957: launch of Sputnik • Fears that USSR was leading race to create ICBMs • US sped up plans to buildICBMs& IRBM submarines Nikolai Khrushchev after Sputnik: “We will bury you. Your grandchildren will live under Communism.”

  32. The Effects of Sputnik • Sputnik ledto fears that US was: • Growing soft • Losing competitive edge • Losing work ethic • Gov responded with: • 1958: National Aeronautics & Space Administration • National Defense Education Act promote STEM education

  33. Sputnik in 1957 The Original Seven—Mercury Astronauts Alan Shepard was the 1st American in space

  34. Waging Peace • DDE tried to end nuclear arms race as both sides tested h-bombs & ICBMs • 1953: DDE called for disarmament & presented “Atoms for Peace” plan to the UN • 1955: Khrushchev rejected DDE’s “open skies” plan for disarmament

  35. Military-Industrial Complex • In his farewell address (1961), DDE warned against Military-Industrial Complex: • Massive military spending that dominates domestic & foreign politics

  36. Conclusions • By 1960, the US more optimistic than 1950 • US no longer afraid of return of another Great Depression • Anxiety over the Cold War continued but not as severe • But…values & race relations were areas of concern