The Charlotte News

Monday, May 13, 1940


Site Ed. Note: What's that, Mr. Cash? Television in 1940? And large-screen television, no less. Of course, big or small, problem was that there was no programming to go with it, much as the internet proceeded to exist to no one's great curiosity or amazement for some 25 years before it caught the consumer's general interest in the late nineties. Well, given the malodorous nature of most television programming through the years, thank goodness smellavision never caught on, though sellavision certainly did. Nowadays, what most seems to ayl us though is that the Fox appears to be guarding the Henhouse and the consequent smell of decaying, invaded chickens is lousing up the whole barnyard pretty double-quick while the Fox licks its greasy chops again and again. Of course, all us children know what happened to the too crafty Fox in the end. But, that's another story.

At least we got shed of all of that planned obsolescence. Which is why the dictation software last night printed the line "just how good or bad Japanese gunnery is we don't know" as "just how good or bad Japanese diarrhea is we don't know". (We didn't make that up; it did.) So give us a minute while we try to interface the Experience Version with the Lacking-in-Experience dictation software which won't run in the Experience so that we must buy the Experience-compatible version or get stuck running two hard drives, one for the Experience and one for the Lacking-in-Experience, (Are you?), or skip dictation altogether and go back to typing, ykkk--so everybody wins in the end.

With so many changes, everything really does stay the same.

Wethinks the issue be that the human only evolves a mite or two in a few hundred years. How much Experience do we expect in a mere 60 or so?

War's Prospect

Spectacular Blows by Allies Are Not to Be Expected

It all probability, we may as well begin to toughen ourselves to the idea of hearing mainly bad news from Europe for a long time.

What we want, of course, is to see the Allied armies fling the barbarian horde back into Germany and sweep on gradually toward Berlin. But that is only a pipe dream for the present. It is clear enough that the Allies do not possess the initiative in the Lowlands and that they are not likely to take it soon.

On the contrary, they are steadily losing ground and there is every reason to expect that they will continue to do so. The Germans operate with the cool precision of seven years of training and planning for precisely this blow. They land on the sand dunes of the Dutch coast, which affords no hiding places, under the very nose of the British navy. They drop from the sky in such swarms that even the greatest watchfulness cannot prevent some of them from landing successfully.

None of this is to say, however, that Hitler is going to win the war. It is one of the penalties of democracy that the democratic nations are never prepared for war, however great their armies and navies may be on paper. And eight months is not time enough to remedy that case. The Allies must build up to and pass Hitler's air strength before they can hope to have the best of it.

Wage Trouble

Wake Forest Loses Footballer For Financial Reasons

The low regard in which most of our colleges and universities hold the amateur athletic standard is having its effect in an increasing number of mortifying incidents. All of which help not in the least to raise the esteem which our centers of light and learning enjoy, but on the contrary justify cynicism for the abasement of their ideals in favor of expediency.

A case in point has just occurred at Wake Forest. Now, Wake Forest, being a denominational college of purely local influence, has no proper title to the powerful football team it has been building up in the last two or three years--as have few other Southern schools, perhaps none. For one regrettable thing, its overwhelming supremacy compelled Davidson College to cancel a traditional Thanksgiving game out of consideration for the well-being of its own players, most of whom are bona fide students drawn from this area of the country.

And, Wake Forest professionalism has become so much a matter of common knowledge that last week, when a couple of varsity men, from Massachusetts and Brooklyn, N.Y., announced their intention not to play this Fall, it was reported straight from the campus that the trouble with one of them was his dissatisfaction with financial arrangements.

That financial arrangements were made with him by the college authorities themselves, does not appear. But that they know that professionalism is practiced, and that they almost openly abet it, is plain.

Egg Tariff

State Lawmakers Need to Examine Constitution

What the lawmakers of this country seem to need is a course in reading the Constitution of the United States. Senator Burnett, from Spartanburg County, over in South Carolina, for instance. He wants a tax of five cents a dozen on eggs imported into South Carolina from other states (mainly North Carolina, he says).

But the Constitution is explicit on the point. Art. 1, Sec. 10:

"No state shall, without the consent of Congress, lay an impost or duty on imports or exports, except what may be absolutely necessary for executing its inspection laws ... and all such laws shall be subject to the revision and control of Congress."

That provision, as everybody who is familiar with the Federalist papers and the debates of the Constitutional convention knows, was enacted precisely to keep the states from doing what Senator Burnett proposes.

But he is not alone, of course. Every state in the Union has dozens of such laws as he asks--many of them are enacted by lawmakers less candid than Senator Burnett and masquerading under the ridiculous pretense that they are "absolutely necessary for executing ... inspection laws."

We are heading straight toward being Balkanized, with every state trying to set up "autarchy" on its own account--an attempt that brought disaster before the Constitution was framed, and which will certainly bring disaster again. One law of this description inevitably moves the state discriminated against to retaliate in kind. Let Senator Burnett consider, for instance, what it would mean to South Carolina if North Carolina--its best truck customer--decided to shut out all that iodine by a tariff.

What makes the case worse, is that the Supreme Court has shown itself reluctant to call a halt to the laying of all these internal tariffs. However, one can see the reason. The duty is expressly laid on Congress:

"... and all such laws shall be subject to the revision and control of Congress."


Television Sales Okay If Death Made in Full Candor

Announcement of the successful demonstration of a television screen measuring four and one-half by six feet, instead of the eight by ten inches now used on home receivers, is interesting in connection with the recent uproar over a Federal Communications Commission order restricting the sale of the receivers presently available.

Not because it means that the small screen is obsolete because it does plainly indicate that television is still in the experimental stage and subject to rapid change. The argument of the FCC in issuing its order was that it was quite possible that desirable changes in the rate at which the image was "scanned" at the sending station might well make the present types of receivers useless. And so it might.

Perhaps the order went too far. There is no reason the consumer should not participate in the development of television by purchasing receivers which are still experimental. They always have so participated in mechanical advances to the great celebration of improvement in many devices. Without such participation, the present perfection of the automobile would have been quite impossible.

But they are certainly entitled to know, fully and clearly, that what they are buying is subject to being made obsolete almost overnight. They could see that easily in the case of the automobile, but radio transmission is an absolute mastery to most of them, and they are likely to assume, in the absence of specific information to the contrary, that a new television set will be quite satisfactory and serviceable for years as the sound receivers which have been in the process of being perfected for many years.

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