The Charlotte News

Monday, March 10, 1947


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that the Senate Atomic Energy Committee voted 8 to 1 to confirm David Lilienthal as chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, the only no vote coming from Senator John W. Bricker of Ohio, apparently voting in accord with the wishes of Senator Robert Taft who had declared himself to be against the appointment. The Committee voted to confirm the other four members of the Commission as well. Senator Tom Connally of Texas abstained on those latter votes as he stated he did not know enough about the four appointees.

Senator Bricker stated he did not believe Mr. Lilienthal to be a Communist but that he was sympathetic to Communism and was permitting Communists to work around the atomic energy project, as was General Manager Carroll Wilson, also approved by the Committee.

The Supreme Court ruled 6 to 3, in Packard Motor Car Co. v. N.L.R.B., 330 U.S. 485, Justice Robert Jackson delivering the opinion, that employers had to bargain with foreman's unions, as foremen were deemed employees within the meaning of the Wagner Labor Relations Act, notwithstanding their status as acting for the employer. Every employee was required to act in the interest of the employer. Justice William O. Douglas wrote the dissent, joined by Chief Justice Fred Vinson and Justice Harold Burton.

In Moscow, the four-power Foreign Ministers Council meeting began, the principal subject of which would be formation of the treaties with Germany and Austria, formally to end the war. The meeting began amid a snowstorm, without the ceremony which had accompanied the opening of the Paris and New York Conferences.

The 40-year four-power interim pact on Germany proposed by Secretary of State Marshall was supported thus far only by British Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin. French Foreign Minister Georges Bidault was said to be considering support of the proposal, provided it would keep Germany without military power. He wanted the industrial Ruhr maintained separately from the rest of Germany, a weak central government, and a low level of industrial production.

In Manila, a hand grenade had exploded within ten feet of President Manuel Roxas, standing with other Philippine principals on a speaking platform before 50,000 persons the previous night. Five persons were detained for questioning by police.

The commander of the Japanese during the "rape of Nanking", 65-year old Lt. General Hisaotani, was sentenced to death by firing squad by a Chinese military court. He was the first of sixteen Japanese generals to be tried for war crimes in Nanking.

In Frankfurt, Germany, it was announced that all military scrip in the U.S. occupation zone was being recalled because of counterfeiting of the scrip in both Germany and France. Arrests had been made of counterfeiters.

The President named John Peurifoy of South Carolina to be Assistant Secretary of State.

It was announced by the White House that the President would speak to a joint session of Congress on Wednesday to urge provision of aid to both Greece and Turkey, to supplant the aid to Greece which Britain could no longer afford to provide. This important speech, as indicated, would define that which came to be known as the "Truman Doctrine".

The President met this date with Congressional leaders and was reported to have told them of his fear that without the aid to Greece, the throne of King George would fall and in its place would come a Communist regime.

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved a tougher bill outlawing back pay for portal-to-portal time than a previous version in the Senate. It adopted the tougher stance of the House bill, outlawing the existing back pay claims, except where custom and contract provided for the portal pay.

A plant in New Bedford, Mass., being struck by 32 AFL Teamsters of a local, was receiving parts via helicopter to the 2,400 workers who had crossed the picket lines. The Teamsters threatened the use of box kites to try to stop the helicopter flights.

Near Lumberton, N.C., a woman, mother of five children, had been stabbed to death and her body left burning on a haystack at her farm eight miles north of the town in the Barker-Ten Mile Community. Bloodhounds led law enforcement to a neighboring tenant farm, where the occupants told of a transient who had worked there having changed his bloody clothes the night before, bandaged a cut hand, and then departed. There was no evidence that the victim had been assaulted, prior to infliction of the fatal wounds.

Tom Fesperman reports that henceforth, the Legislators would be working in the biennial session for nothing, as their paltry salaries for the session had expired. They were paid $10 per diem for 60 days. Even if they stayed in session, he says, until 1974, they would receive no more.

Let's hope not. Get it done now. We are tired of hearing about 1947 teacher salaries, the closed shop, proposed liquor referenda, and increased traffic fines, etc. Get behind thee, Devil.

He tells of a lawmaker in 1941 having quit and gone home on the 61st day of the session based on expiration of pay. He then received a call entreating his return to vote to break a tie. He refused, without promise of pay. The lawmakers then dug into their own pockets and paid his way back to Raleigh and home again. The tie was broken.

The legislators received letters urging their support of House Bill 651, of which there was none. They finally figured out that the letters favored support of HB 65, anent a tax exemption.

On the editorial page, "On the Home Stretch" provides an assessment, signed by Harry Ashmore as "H.S.A.", regarding what had transpired thus far in the 1947 Legislative Session of the General Assembly, scheduled to end April 4. Its chief problem had been finding funding for its primary proposal, to raise teacher salaries. It appeared likely that the compromise of a 30 percent hike in salaries would be adopted. "It is the first olive out of the bottle; the others will come easy."

But why did those kids call the olive an orange the other day? That is our question du jour. It's olive, not orange, as in "Yellow, olive, and blue..." which don't come easy. Okay, kids? Okay.

We must listen with our ears, and take out those silly beans. They will do you no good, give you cancer in the end, and are very, very rude.

"Excuse me, my cellphone is ringing."

"Oh, well raspberry your blackberry tart to you then. Adieu..."

Wake up, please. The world got along for many, many years without these infernal second-by-second news programs and communication devices. We recommend a movement to throw it all overboard before we blow up the world. It is really stupid to go around with a phone in your ear, dunce. It be not cool. It looks more stupid than it is. Throw those stupid phones in the trash. It won't hurt you to hear your own thoughts for a change.

You resemble, alternately, Mr. Zorin awaiting translation at the U.N., or the Nuremberg war crimes defendants, in the box.

The Legislature was also set to pass the ban on the closed shop, an anti-Red bill.

Testifying against the bill was Sam Hall, avowed Communist. Mr. Ashmore was reminded of the Carl Sandburg tune which went: "My name it is Sam Hall, And I hate you one and all..." What he had to say did not carry the day. He had done as much as any other speaker to assure the bill's passage.

Well, look what happened in the aftermath. Maybe they should have listened to the Commie.

The hearing had been on the closed shop, says Mr. Ashmore, but the issue had been the closed mind.

A piece from the Salisbury Post, titled "OPA—Requiescat in Pace", comments that it was unlikely that there would be sadness at the end of OPA on June 30. But a thousand years hence, it might be recorded that OPA was the most typical of American institutions. Despite its bureaucratic problems, it saved the country from itself during the war and afterward. It had been too authoritarian but also served in another vein nobly, with thousands of citizens serving voluntarily on local boards and juries to monitor and police price controls.

It kept the price of sugar under a dollar per pound and bread under a dollar per loaf.

It might have added to the epitaph the words of the Clown from Shakespeare's The Winter's Tale:

I cannot do't without counters. Let me see; what am
I to buy for our sheep-shearing feast? Three pound
of sugar, five pound of currants, rice,—what will
this sister of mine do
with rice? But my father
hath made her mistress of the feast, and she lays it
on. She hath made me four and twenty nose-gays for
the shearers, three-man-song-men all, and very good
ones; but they are most of them means and bases; but
one puritan amongst them, and he sings psalms to
horn-pipes. I must have saffron to colour the warden
pies; mace; dates?—none, that's out of my note;
nutmegs, seven; a race or two of ginger, but that I
may beg; four pound of prunes, and as many of
raisins o' the sun.

Drew Pearson tells of the two great achievements during the military career of General Marshall, the first being in 1918 when in a week he was able, at the direction of General Pershing, to transfer a million men and 40,000 tons of ammunition and supporting equipment from St. Mihiel to the Meuse-Argonne front. The other was his planning of the Normandy invasion in 1944 while chief of staff of the Army.

Now, he was faced, as Secretary of State, with creating a permanent peace with Germany, and ending the suspicions which had developed between the U.S. and Russia, substituting for it a mutual friendship.

One of his biggest obstacles was the evident split inside the ruling 14-man Politburo in Moscow. One faction appeared more favorable to the U.S. than the other. During the 1943 Teheran Conference, Stalin had to consult with the Politburo before responding on certain major issues to President Roosevelt. Indeed, Prime Minister Stalin had been easier to deal with, in the perception of Secretary Byrnes, than had Foreign Commissar V. M. Molotov.

One source inside the Kremlin had imparted that the usual situation had Mr. Molotov leading the hardliners against the U.S., with Andrei Gromyko his chief messenger. Josef Stalin was the chief proponent of good relations with the West. But he was also not as powerful as he had been and was frequently visiting the Crimea for rests. He even agreed with a foreign diplomat that Mr. Gromyko could be difficult, but stated that he was operating under the instruction of Mr. Molotov.

During the New York Foreign Ministers Council meeting, Mr. Molotov had told the diplomats that Mr. Gromyko spoke for him at all times, and named him Deputy Foreign Minister.

Inside the Foreign Office, Andrei Vyshinsky was spokesman for the Stalin view toward the West. He had sent Boris Stein to New York to try to soften up Mr. Gromyko, but Mr. Stein had been unable to accomplish the task.

The split extended to treatment of the foreign press, as the Stalin-Vyshinsky faction favored letting the foreign press into Russia and removal of censorship and travel restrictions. The Molotov faction wanted to retain strictly controlled access.

The division would make Secretary Marshall's job that much harder.

Marquis Childs tries to imagine what the British Cabinet might have said in response to the President's speech at Baylor University the prior Thursday, in which he had urged the approval at the Geneva Conference of the charter to establish the International Trade Organization, indicating that a failure to lower trade barriers and extend the reciprocal trade agreements would lead back to the policies of the Hawley-Smoot high tariff era and inevitably into another war.

Mr. Childs takes his cues from the talk among British diplomats in Washington. He thus hypothesizes that the British Cabinet Minister would approve the speech generally, but with reservations, as England was preparing to restrict certain types of imports, starting with American tobacco and films, and directing their exports. The President would naturally be dismayed at that reaction. But England was using its U.S. and Canadian loan money to buy imports and sending out its exports for nothing, as they were going to countries in Western Europe which could not afford to pay and had no exports needed by England for exchange.

The British appeared to favor a loan to the other countries of Western Europe who were the trading partners with Britain. They also wanted the Ruhr to be rehabilitated to enable industrial manufacture again.

As the British Minister would depart in the Washington snow, the world would look not so cheerful to the President as it had when the hypothetical conversation began.

Samuel Grafton, writing from sea on the way back to the United States from his tour of England, France, and Czechoslovakia, reflects on the customs which had been adopted by Britons to adjust to shortages, such as snitching sugar and matches from the tables of restaurants after a meal, as a Tory friend had explained. Then, a waiter told Mr. Grafton that things were not that bad, that he had just spent two weeks in the country and had plenty of food and beer. The Tory friend sniffed that the waiter was probably Labor. Another Tory stated that there was no real freedom in the country.

Mr. Grafton did not believe these negative views, as the Tories were overstating the case for dramatic impact. The British food was bad and skimpy but was low-priced and restaurant meals were unrationed. Britons in the moneyed classes were traveling to America, the Bahamas, Bermuda, and the Continent, bringing back food on their return. The British poor were not complaining about the absence of these benefits, remaining under strict rationing and price control. They were eating better than before the war.

U.S. aid should be made for the sake of these poor, not the privileged of Britain.

The Tories offered only a band-aid as a remedy for the crisis, which they portrayed as catastrophic. But Labor understated the troubles at times. Both sets of reactions had to be used as lenses through which to read the news from Britain.

A letter from a former G.I. complains that North Carolina was not doing enough for veterans, compared to the Northern states. He cites the recent defeat of a bill before the Legislature which would have provided veterans an extra $500 in tax exemption. Of 29 veterans in the Legislature, only seven had voted for the bill. He notes that right after the war was over, the people were uniformly praising the veterans. But now, that spirit had disappeared, their war effort apparently forgotten.

A letter from the executive director of the Bishops' Emergency Relief Campaign, to provide aid from the Catholic Church to the victims of the war, states that the national goal of the campaign was five million dollars.

A letter from Glen Ridge, N.J., objects to spending millions of tax dollars on construction of the United Nations Building in New York City, the site for which having been donated by John D. Rockefeller, Jr. The writer thinks it a "hornets' nest" of bureaucracy, as the ten commissions created to perform the major work of the Economic and Social Council of the U.N. were unnecessary to do the job.

A letter from six persons in Lagos, Nigeria, again seeks pen pals, to exchange new stamps, coins, and American goods for African goods.

Two previous letters, one recently, had been received by The News from Lagos, also seeking pen pals.

The addresses are provided in case you should wish to correspond, all of 3, Carr Lane, except one at 13, Offin Avenue. That last one sounds a little sinister. We would steer clear of him.

A letter from a Navy Commodore thanks the newspaper for cooperating with the U.S. Naval Reserve Mobile Unit which had visited the city in February.

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