Secret White House Tapes

Meeting with Roy Rutherford—April 29, 1950

About this recording

  • Roy Rutherford
April 29, 1950
Eisenhower is speaking about an article written in Cleveland Plain Dealer that was very
flattering to him. He asks Rutherford about what he does as a freelance writer . Much of
Rutherford's response is unintelligible . Eisenhower tells him "that my life has been such
as to keep me away from American publicity values except that they, in major elements.
I've known who the big politicians were, what their theories and ideas, and I've found that
I don't know if I like them or dislike them."
Conversation then turns to a discussion of the National Association of Manufacturers
(NAM). Eisenhower tell Rutherford "when you come down to the NAM, as today I am
astounded to find a reputation for being economic Tories that the endorsement of the
NAMis a kiss of death. . ." He speaks ofpropaganda saying "And the, when you go to
disabuse apeople's mind ofpropaganda I think you can do it with respect to an individual
or to a specific incident, anything that is not labeled. Where the label has become wicked
in their minds, that's what I say is really incurable. " Rutherford agrees and Eisenhower
remarks that the NAMhas been labeled such that "when you say the initials NAMyou're
saying to the ordinary fellow that they're reactionary exploiters of the common toiler ."
Eisenhower tells Rutherford that he recently attended the meeting of the American
Academy ofPolitical Science at which Byrd was "in a way, debating" Paul Douglas
about big business. According to Eisenhower, Douglas' argument was "big business
taking over big government whereupon you would have fascism or Nazism. And he sort
of argued, although he didn't develop fully his argument. . ." and Byrd countered "b6cause
it is developed here, it is, it is, got certain features for us that have established our
position, helped us in the war, made our prosperity, and while we were developing this
thing." Eisenhower and Rutherford discuss how many jobs have been created through
big business and that hundreds of thousands of people are employed as aresult. The
recording ends .