McCrthy was one of the early masters of the sound byte. He combined that with the mind of a bully and a complete disregard of any form of ethics to destroy the lives of hundreds of people to further his own career. He thrived on his ability to manipulate fear, scaring even Eisenhower who understood how fundamentally evil McCarthy was. What ultimately destroyed McCarthy was very simple -- television. Day after day for weeks, the American public got to watch him first hand in action. And they saw a man who, in the words of Joseph Welch (see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lAur_I077NA), truly had no sense of decency at all. McCarthy never recovered. But his spiritual heirs, who are now much more sophisticated in their manipulation of the media, are thriving and well with handsomely paid gigs in radio and TV.