The Charlotte News

Wednesday, March 5, 1947


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that President Truman, touring Mexico, was shown from the air the four-year old volcano, Paracutin, violently erupting at the time, after which he was scheduled to be motored to the Teotihuacan pyramids of the Sun and Moon, 28 miles north of Mexico City.

We hope that they found their way back. It is more difficult than it looks, even in daytime

The previous day, the bands at the folk dance festival in Mexico City repeatedly played "The Missouri Waltz" in honor of the President's visit. No one apparently told them that he was not fond of the tune. President Miguel Aleman, at a luncheon the day before at the American Embassy, dubbed the President "Champion of American Solidarity".

Secretary of State George C. Marshall left Washington for Moscow, to meet in the Foreign Ministers Council.

Nikolai A. Bulganin, who would ultimately serve as Premier of Russia between 1955 and 1958, had been appointed Deputy Prime Minister of Russia, making him heir apparent to Josef Stalin. Georgy Malenkov, however, would first succeed Stalin upon his death in 1953.

In England, new snowfall again snarled the transportation system. In eighteen hours, 15 inches of snow had fallen in Southern England and the Midlands, again halting vital coal shipments.

The Senate Banking Subcommittee approved a measure to allow ten percent hikes in rents. The bill would next go before the full committee.

The New York Cotton Exchange reopened after an agreement was reached whereby employees would be paid between $6 and $25 more per per week and clerical workers would receive a bonus when a day's trading exceeded a quarter million dollars. About 100 workers had struck the day before, to close the Exchange. Others joined the strike in sympathy. Charwomen received the $6 per week increase. But we still await word as to what they were charring.

A measure was introduced in the State Legislature anent regulation of milk, in response to the recent indictments by the Grand Jury of Mecklenburg regarding adulteration of milk with water and selling it as whole milk.

Former Governor Cameron Morrison spoke to the Legislature, favoring a statewide referendum on liquor. He was opposed to controlled sale. The referendum, if successful for the drys, would abolish controlled sale in the 25 of 100 counties which then permitted it, making the state more palatable to Ida B. Wise.

The State House Public Utilities Committee voted against having taxicabs regulated by the State Utilities Commission.

The General Assembly Joint Appropriations Committee was set to consider a hike in teacher salaries. Three proposals were before it, one for a 30 percent increase, another for a 25 percent increase, and a third to separate teachers from other State employees, giving teachers a higher raise in pay. All three proposals promised higher pay than that favored by Governor Gregg Cherry and the Advisory Budget Commission, proposing a 20 percent increase.

In Tokyo, a man in a long black coat and straw hat dropping to his shoulders to cover his entire face was brought to court at the end of a rope as a confessed rapist and strangler of several women. Once the traditional hat for such a defendant was removed, the former naval warrant officer was revealed as a mild-mannered appearing individual. He then confessed to killing, since April, 1945, seven of ten women with whose deaths he was charged.

He also contended, however, that he was not the peeping Tom who had annoyed women by squinting through their windows. "I never committed such loose conduct—the idea," he said indignantly.

That's a relief. It appeared for a minute that he was a really bad egg.

In New York, actress Jacqueline Dalya was undergoing treatment for a head injury sustained when fans seeking her autograph knocked her to the ground.

In Erie, Pa., an expectant mother was stranded in her home by 15-foot snowdrifts, but was rescued just in time to give birth to a son. She and her baby were doing well.

On the editorial page, "A Crisis and an Opportunity" finds a bill before the State Legislature to have an investigation of the educational problems in the state to be a good one.

It should start its praise, however, by using the correct verbal form "effect a compromise", not "affect a compromise", as the compromise was not to be affected by any effect the effort might produce.

The bill called for a $25,000 appropriation to effect its purposes, hopefully positively affecting education.

We affect, therefore, a scowl at this piece from its inception, and refuse further comment.

"No More Presidential Greetings" discusses the President's request to end the draft being likely of approval by Congress, which had wanted to end it the previous year. The draft had shown that the soldiers produced in peacetime were a little worse than no soldiers at all. The fact that the Army had the best of the nation's manpower during the war had contributed to this situation, leaving only those who had not fought to be chosen in the draft. Thus, the occupation duties were being performed by green troops, no longer possessed of the patriotic drive which had characterized the war years.

Now, the duties had to be met with a professional Army of volunteers, leaving the quality of enlistment to chance. The President hoped that the Congress would provide for universal military training to establish a base in the country for such an Army.

It concludes that peace, while an illusion, at least would be a pleasant one, absent any longer the dreaded letter from the President issuing "Greetings".

"The People's Choice in '48" remarks that both major parties had machinery in place which limited the field for the 1948 nominations for the presidency. The Republicans, according to veteran Washington correspondent Carey Longmire, were controlled by the "Ohio-Pennsylvania Axis", Senator Taft of Ohio shaping Congressional policy while Joseph Pew of Pennsylvania organized financial support of the party.

Mr. Taft's ultraconservatism and isolationism fit the mood of the party. Moreover, he had the support of Southern delegates. His only serious threat was to be from Governor Dewey, still, however, an outsider. Harold Stassen was deemed too liberal by Mr. Pew. Senator Vandenberg had counted himself out and Senator John Bricker had made a deal with Senator Taft.

It appeared, based on the analysis of Mr. Longmire, that the race in 1948 would be between President Truman and Senator Taft.

Of course, Thomas Dewey would again be the Republican nominee, as in 1944, this time running with California Governor Earl Warren, having run the first time with Governor Bricker.

A piece from the St. Louis Globe-Democrat, titled "Ode to a Sleepy GI", wants to follow the Walt Whitman line, to erect a monument high above the rest to those who had failed, with respect to a Marine private in China who had dumped a bucketful of sand on the bugler on a frosty winter morning, the bugler being too insistent to his duty of providing the clarion call to awake.

The private's punishment was that he "tenderly arouse" the bugler every morning and serve him coffee. The piece hopes that the bugler might scald his tongue.

Drew Pearson states that diplomats returning from the Near East reported that the situation in Greece was worse than expressed by General Marshall to Congress. They told of the Greek countryside being almost wholly in the hands of the guerillas, nearly as problematic as during German occupation. Half a million people had fled to Athens to escape guerilla fighting, causing the fields not to be cultivated. If British troops were to be withdrawn, the Government of King George II would collapse.

Communist agents from Yugoslavia and Albania were entering Macedonia and, to a degree, to Greece proper. British withdrawal could lead to a Communist government to fill the void left by the throne. But 70 percent of the people were conservative farmers who were bitter enemies of Communism, feeling greater propinquity to the U.S. for the number of American relatives.

British imperialism had placed a burden on the country even though the war debt had been forgiven. The Hambros Bank had made large loans for civil works projects, with high interest attached, up to 16 percent, requiring a large part of the Greek budget for repayment of the loans. Liberals wanted the interest rates lowered to around 5 percent.

The British occupation had gone from bad to worse since the Nazis had been ousted in 1944.

The State Department had been kept in the dark on the situation despite the fact that the U.S. was now expected to shoulder the British burden in the country. American journalists had been forbidden by the American Army from writing critical stories on the occupation anywhere in the Middle East. At the close of the war, General Benny Giles had stated that the American people had no business knowing what was occurring in that theater.

He next relates that one of the reasons behind the opposition to David Lilienthal as chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission was anti-Semitism, as conveyed by the secretary to Senator Tom Stewart of Tennessee, who had indicated that there were too many Anglo-Saxons in the country to provide such an important job to a Jew.

Marquis Childs remarks of the world crisis at present, in Europe and the Middle East. Britain could no longer sustain an Army of 1.7 million men and critics of the foreign policy had been urging Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin to scale it back to 700,000 or 800,000 men. Even that would not easily be sustained when the money from the 3.7 billion dollar U.S. loan the previous year would run out.

General Marshall had set forth the problems in terms of darkness and gloom. The American assumption that order was the norm was belied by the facts of life, that only through the deliberate exertion of will by man was order achieved.

The goal of the U.S. was not to sustain the British Empire but rather to lend a guiding hand to the colonial peoples seeking independence. With India, for instance, on the verge of civil war regarding religious differences, it would be a difficult task for the United States. But if no attempt were made to undertake it, the result would be to risk enormous problems.

Harold Ickes discusses the budget differences between House and Senate Republicans, the latter having passed a resolution providing for 1.5 billion dollars less reduction of the President's proposed budget than that of the House. Representative Harold Knutson, chairman of the Ways & Means Committee, was still urging an across-the-board 20 percent tax cut. Other members favored a graduated cut. Senator Taft believed it was more important to cut taxes than reduce the debt. The result would probably be half a loaf.

The Republican campaign promises had proved too much to realize, given the realities of the cost of running the Government effectively.

The Republicans now had no one at whom to point for not being able to fulfill those promises. They were trying to soften the people for a final decision which would likely prove disappointing both on tax reduction and reduction of the debt.

A letter writer finds his treatment by the Charlotte police to have been shabby and short-sighted. He had come to town and purchased real property with cash, only then to be given a ticket for making a right turn at a no-turn corner, was surrounded by three cops who would not hear his excuses of being an out-of-towner. A young whipper-snapper had then the temerity to fine him $3.50 for the offense. His property was now for sale.

A letter writer also responds to the "Let's Fix It" column in which Charlotte realtor Frank Jones had advocated greater courtesy by the police to visitors to the city.

He likes the Forest City idea of placing a warning ticket on the windshield of out-of-town motorists who violated the parking laws.

The editors note that the latter policy had now been adopted in Charlotte.

A letter remarks on the closure of the Army Air Force Reserve program at Morris Field because the City charged for its use, the only municipality in the country to do so after receiving the base free from the Government. The two writers wanted it re-established.

A letter writer finds the opportunity for brotherhood gone in the country, as loyal and disloyal people could not mix.

A letter writer suggests that there were many dangerous intersections in Charlotte other than those pictured on the front page in recent days and hopes that the City Council would pay attention to all of them.

First, however, they have to find the vandals who dragged the temporary traffic circle away, utilizing a sash cord.

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