The Charlotte News

Tuesday, April 8, 1947


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that the Government was hopeful of resolving the long distance part of the telephone strike this date. The long distance service was the hardest hit by the strike, begun the previous day and rendering 294,000 telephone workers idle. But the union president was less optimistic of resolution, saying it would be up to the company.

A bill proposed by Congressman Fred Hartley of New Jersey and approved the previous week by the House Labor Committee offered a solution to the telephone strike through 60-day court injunctions against any strike affecting the national health or safety. Senator Claude Pepper of Florida registered opposition to the measure. The President had not yet indicated his opinion on the bill. A similar bill was now pending before the Senate Labor Committee. The members who favored it stated that they opposed any emergency action specific to the telephone strike.

At the Foreign Ministers Council meeting in Moscow, V. M. Molotov agreed to halt discussion of German matters over which there was disagreement, political and economic issues, and to begin instead discussion of the matter of determining German frontiers. British Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin had led the effort toward this end.

Henry Wallace arrived in London to begin a two-week tour of Western Europe, in search of "progressive people", those who believed that the unity of the world could bring about peace, those who looked forward, not back, up, or down. He brought with him some eggs from a new hybrid chicken which his family had developed, and hoped that the chickens could be bred in England.

Dr. Edwin Nourse, chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers, stated that the price situation at present was serious, that he was worried over the inability to bring prices down, resulting in demands for increased wages.

Henry Ford, 83, pioneer of the automotive industry and the assembly line method of production, suffered a cerebral hemorrhage and died the previous night in Dearborn, Mich., at 11:40 p.m. Because flood waters had cut electricity to the Ford estate, he died by fire light and candle light. He had spent the day inspecting flood water damage around the River Rouge Ford plant and had appeared in good health.

He had founded the Ford Motor Co. in 1903 with a pooled investment of $28,000. By the end of 1945, the company reported over 718 million dollars worth of assets, all held by the Ford family. It was not precisely known, however, how much belonged to Henry Ford and his wife Clara. Mr. Ford had never spent his money lavishly but had funneled it back into the business.

In Stevens Point, Wisc., Robert J. Klopotek, 25, known during the war as the "Mad Pole" when he flew for the Ninth Air Force, was killed with the pilot of the private plane in which he was riding.

In Philipsburg, Pa., searchers were trying to locate a lost four-year old boy in the mountains of the central part of the state. He had disappeared from his home in Loch Lohmond on Easter, wearing only a thin undershirt. A small red sweater, believed to belong to him, was found on a railroad track near his home. There were also footprints from bare feet near the location.

In Inverness, Scotland, some people were reporting sightings of the Loch Ness monster, just as the tourist season began. It had first been spotted in 1933, but had discretely remained out of sight during most of the war.

Said one man, it was traveling at high speed when he saw it. Four men in a car also reported seeing it, one man saying it had a gleaming body and one hump. Some said six.

That's not right. It has two.

Hal Boyle tells the story of the "Merchant Prince of Ivanhoe" who bought more than he sold, and the salesman who wound up in the barrel of molasses, a story he uncovered in Eastern North Carolina. You may read of that on page 7-A.

The one heya from Friday on the yaupon teas is ova heya.

On the editorial page, "Post Mortem on the Legislature" tells of the accomplishments of the 1947 North Carolina Legislature, which included the largest budget ever proposed, the most ambitious building program, and the first post-war health program of any state in the nation.

It also acted scared on many occasions, using the gag rule to avoid votes of legislation on the floor by simple majority, and holding several voice votes on controversial matters to avoid recording yeas and nays. Labor was treated badly, with the passing of the ban on the closed shop and the failure to pass the state minimum wage, which would have extended minimum wage protection to intrastate workers who did not fall within the ambit of the Federal minimum wage law.

"Communist" was given a magic quality during the session, enabling stampeding of legislators to restrict civil liberties.

The Legislature also intruded on many local matters, refusing to allow cities to vote on whether they would have ABC stores.

On the whole, it had not been too impressive, but, relative to other Legislatures in the state's history, it was not so bad. It had not been very progressive though.

"Are Utilities Strikes Defensible?" comments on the telephone strike nationwide, including Charlotte and Southern Bell. The union had a reasonable basis for its demand for $12 per week in higher wages and parity among telephone workers' wages across the nation. The company also presented a reasonable argument of inability to meet those demands. The company appeared less stubborn, however, than the union, which had refused the Government request to postpone the strike for two days to enable more time for resolution of the impasse.

Certainly, the cost of living had risen, but that argument was universal, applying to all workers. Increasing wages, however, would only contribute further to the spiral of inflation.

The piece favors compulsory arbitration for public utilities to prevent such strikes contrary to the public interest.

"The Heavy Odds Against Progress" reminds that the upcoming special election for a local school tax would be determined by a majority of those registered to vote, not a majority of those voting, the result of the peculiar constitutional requirement in the state regarding such special levies on matters not considered essential.

The Legislature had passed a bill to allow a referendum in 1948 to determine whether to amend the State Constitution to abolish this requirement. The editorial hopes that the amendment would pass.

A piece from The Christian Science Monitor, titled "The Rights of Man", tells of ACLU director Roger Baldwin heading to Tokyo as a consultant on civil liberties for the War Department, to see to it that the Bill of Rights was extended, coterminous with American influence.

But it also took economic fertilization, notes the piece, to nurture democratic ideals and freedoms.

Drew Pearson tells of Emma Guffey Miller, Democratic committeewoman from Pennsylvania, having told the President that she had the perfect person to sing the "Star Spangled Banner" during the 1948 Democratic convention: Margaret Truman. The President had no comment.

The Democratic national committeemen from various states, however, came away from the meeting more confident than at any time since FDR had been in the White House. The President appeared to enjoy the meeting and was buoyed by the results of the mayoral election in Chicago. Much of the discussion centered on the illogic of the Republican budget-cutting plan.

He next tells of the Senate Chaplain, Peter Marshall, opening a recent session with a prayer that the members could say what they meant and mean what they said, and that it would be worth saying. He also prayed for speech of which the members would not later be ashamed.

Mr. Pearson notes that the lengthy debate which followed made it evident that no one had listened to the prayer.

Marquis Childs recommends A Room on the Route by Godfrey Blunden, an Australian journalist, for gleaning an understanding of Soviet Russia. Mr. Blunden had spent time in Russia during the most critical period of the war. He examines, through the vehicle of fiction, several Russians, from a high-ranking general to a peasant woman during the time of the Nazi invasion. He told of the suffering of the proletariat under Soviet rule, with close examination of the 1937 purges. He also communicated the strength and vitality of the Russians.

He told of Mitka, a young Russian who survived everything, an extraordinary piece of fiction writing, says Mr. Childs.

The book, while fiction, was also reporting on a high plane. The route in question was that from the Kremlin to the country villas, necessitating a special stamp for passage and subject to intense surveillance.

Mr. Childs wishes to see more books of the type, dealing with the people of Russia rather than ideas and theories. Former Ambassador to Russia William Bullitt had gone to the country with a sympathetic attitude but left with Russophobia. Fewer opinions of partisans and more attempts candidly to appraise Russia was needed for understanding and formulation of proper policy.

Stewart Alsop, still in Jerusalem, regards it as probable that Secretary of State Marshall and Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin were discussing in Moscow at the Foregin Ministers Council meeting what to do about Palestine. Having embarked on the plan for aid to Greece and Turkey, Palestine was the next logical issue.

Most British officials in Jerusalem and most Jews in Palestine were convinced that partition of the country between Arabs and Jews was the only reasonable path to follow. One British official stated that if the U.S. would agree to share the responsibilities attendant with partition, then Britain would agree to the plan.

The quicker a firm resolution could be had, the better for U.S. interests, to avoid Arab interference. Only partition could enable such an immediate settlement.

There was no possibility at present of an agreed settlement between Arabs and Jews. One functioning state for both populations was also not practicable, for their different and contradictory political objectives and social systems.

All of the Jews except the extreme right and the extreme left, the terrorists and revisionists, the Hashomer Hatzair and the Communists, were prepared to accept partition.

It was necessary to understand the Arab reaction to the partition plan, which inevitably had to include a large Arab population within the Jewish state. It was also necessary to understand the Soviet ambition to turn the Middle East into a Soviet satellite.

A letter from the president of the North Carolina Education Association finds the 30 percent salary increase for teachers passed by the Legislature to be inadequate and favors the higher increase proposed by the South Piedmont Teachers. He hopes that eventually it would be passed.

A letter from a parent, on behalf of his child, age 5, claims the child to be a dry for the previous four years. The wets had thought they were going to get the chance to vote on the subject, but it was canned by the Legislature. One Representative had said that everyone should oppose the bill because by passing it, one would force the County Commissioners to do something that they had refused to do themselves. The letter writer finds such an expression indicative that April had arrived.

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