The Charlotte News

Friday, July 2, 1948


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that 15,000 Yugoslavian Communists, meeting in Belgrade, appealed directly to Prime Minister Stalin to repudiate the Cominform criticism of Yugoslavia and Marshal Tito for being anti-Soviet and too cozy with the West. They said the charges were lies. The Communist Party Central Committee in Moscow had approved the Cominform statement and so it was believed that Stalin had provided his imprimatur as well.

Israel protested the British decision to continue to detain 11,000 Jewish refugees on Cyprus during the truce period, set to end a week hence. The detainees were all of military age. The British had released 14,000 of non-military age.

The wife of the Rumanian Minister to the U.S. accused the owners of Bailey's Beach in Newport, R.I., of being impolite and uncivilized. The owners claimed it was all a misunderstanding arising when the daughter of the Minister wanted to find a good place to swim. When the hotel manager recommended Bailey's Beach, the beach responded by saying that they permitted swimming by invitation only and the daughter had none. The Minister and his family felt shunned and the Minister's wife believed it stemmed from a suggestion that they were Communists. She said that they were not.

Eighteen steel and coal companies, with captive coal mines, refused to sign the new coal contract with UMW and charged before the NLRB unfair labor practices against John L. Lewis, contending that the contract's provisions for a union shop violated Taft-Hartley, permitting union shops if unions voted for it in an NLRB-certified election. No election had taken place. Mr. Lewis claimed that the new provision only amended the 1947 contract, which provided for the union shop. A strike of the coal miners thus still loomed for July 6, despite settlement of the contract with the other companies.

In Tulsa, a 42-year old woman was found dead, beaten to death. Another woman and two teenage girls were found in the same neighborhood, also beaten severely but still alive. In the latter instance, the names of two teenage boys were written in indelible ink on the legs of the girls. Three other unsolved beating deaths had occurred in the neighborhood in 1943 and 1945.

The Georgia Democratic state convention asked the Democrats to draft General Eisenhower as their nominee and called upon President Truman to withdraw. They also wanted Senator Richard Russell of Georgia as the vice-presidential candidate. They indicated that they would shift support to Senator Russell if General Eisenhower were to decline the nomination.

A delegate from New York took the same tack, claiming that President Truman would lead the Democrats to overwhelming defeat. Another group of New York Democrats favored Justice Douglas for the nomination.

Virginia Democrats resisted a motion for an Eisenhower draft, sticking with Senator Harry F. Byrd as their favorite son candidate.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that the White House, through former inner circle "court jester" George Allen as intermediary, was attempting to get General Eisenhower to issue a statement flatly and unequivocally taking himself out of the running for a draft by the Democrats. DNC chairman Howard McGrath denied the report.

North Carolina's third worst polio outbreak since records began in 1918 grew worse with 18 new cases reported across the state, bringing the 1948 total to 342, 42 more than in 1947. Guilford, Burke, Cumberland and Moore Counties had the worst incidence of the crippling disease. A public swimming pool in Raleigh was closed for sterilization. Carolina Beach near Wilmington denied reports that it was closed for quarantine because of the epidemic. There were no reported cases in that area.

Ray Stallings of The News reports of a Charlotte police officer who had a hobby of collecting headlines, begun in 1941 at the birth of his first child. It was, the officer said, designed to provide the boy a history lesson when he got older. All the major news stories of the war were included in the collection.

Well, here it is, more complete than you ever dreamed, and, no doubt, in a little bit more easily accessible form than your father maintained in the closet and chest where he kept the newsprint.

On the editorial page, "Will Wallace Bolt Again?" finds it to have been a mystery as to how Henry Wallace as a liberal could have ever accepted the Communists within the third party movement he had led. Now, as pointed out by the piece by Marquis Childs of this date, he might withdraw from the party as the Communists were seeking to take it over completely.

A third party candidate had entered the Congressional race in California against Congresswoman Helen Gahagan Douglas and in the Senate race in Illinois against Paul Douglas, both designed to split the vote to elect Republicans, in furtherance of the Communist design to destroy true liberalism in the country, its worst enemy. Communists liked conservatives in power so that they would not have to compete with liberals in their bid for authority in the aftermath of the inevitable conservative debacle economically.

One reason for believing that Mr. Wallace might leave the race was that he was not attracting the support he had hoped from disaffected liberal independents. Being a virtual prisoner now of the Communists, whom he rejected, left him with no group to which to turn for counter-support.

"Complete Our Water System" tells of Charlotte facing a water shortage during the war which prompted a 1.8 million dollar bond to expand the reservoir, filter station, and pumping facilities. Virtually all of the money had been spent and the project was not yet complete. Additional funds of $200,000 were needed, half of which was included in the new City budget calling for a property tax hike. It urges voting for the increase as delay would only add to the cost, and a drought could lead to the water shortage which had beset Winston-Salem in 1947.

"Don't Let Death Take Your Holiday" urges care on the highways during the weekend of July Fourth. Drive safely and remember: better to be alive and slow than fast and dead.

A piece from the St. Louis Globe-Democrat, titled "'Delightful Vision'", finds that a poll conducted by World Opinion of 40 million French citizens showed that Marie Antoinette was nineteenth on the list of twenty historic figures with whom they would most like to have a conversation. The piece shouts "bah" to that result, despite her "let them eat cake" reference to the peasants on the eve of her losing her head and the mess about her Golden Fleece and the Hope Diamond. For she had come to typify the Mozart minuet days of the French Revolution.

Instead, the French preferred Napoleon. And they preferred Stalin among living leaders to General De Gaulle for giving them a stimulating hour of dialectic.

"Ugh," it concludes, "these are days of bad dreams."

Drew Pearson tells of DNC chairman Howard McGrath being urged by some Democratic delegates to conduct a grass-roots poll before urging the nomination of President Truman, signal of a growing division within the party. These delegates wanted the President to step aside in favor of someone who could win.

He can't win. He's crazy.

Marshal Tito had recently told the Red Executive Board in Yugoslavia that the peasants were causing problems and that if the churchmen ever roused them to arms, there would be open rebellion. He urged his comrades therefore to get to work. Mr. Pearson notes that internal troubles may have prompted Moscow to junk Tito, leading to the recent denunciations by the Cominform.

White House advisers were urging the President to call Congress back into session after the conventions and exhort them again to pass the Taft-Ellender-Wagner housing bill, endorsed by the GOP platform, thus putting the party on the spot to comply or be labeled at variance with its own pledges. Other advisers, however, thought it was best to let the Republicans stew in their own juices of inaction and not call a special session. It was likely that the President would follow the latter course, to preserve the do-nothing Congress as his primary issue in the campaign.

One reason former chief of staff of the Army Air Forces General Carl Spaatz had retired was so that he could speak his mind. He was now so doing in a series of articles for various magazines, including in this week's Life.

It had been pointed out that no Democratic President who succeeded to the office after the death of his predecessor had ever been re-elected. They had all been Republicans. Mr. Pearson assesses as poor President Truman's chances to break the precedent.

Of course, he does not point out that the only prior Democrat in such shoes was Andrew Johnson in 1868, succeeding the first Republican in the White House, Abraham Lincoln, following the Civil War. The other five ill-fated pairings, William Henry Harrison and John Tyler, Zachary Taylor and Millard Fillmore, James Garfield and Chester Arthur, William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt, and Warren Harding and Calvin Coolidge, were all either Republican-forerunner Whigs, in the first two cases, or Republicans, in the others. Of all of them, only Presidents Roosevelt and Coolidge had won election in their own right. President Lyndon Johnson in 1964 would also break the precedent, as would President Truman in 1948. President Ford would add to the non-elected successors in 1976, albeit under unique circumstances following President Nixon's resignation in disgrace. President Ford was the only President never to be elected to either the vice-presidency or the presidency, having been appointed Vice-President by President Nixon after the resignation of Spiro Agnew in 1973 following his no contest plea to acceptance of bribes while Governor of Maryland prior to 1969.

Marquis Childs recounts that the Communists were preparing a mass drive within the U.S., especially felt within Henry Wallace's third party as the Communists were attempting to take it over from the sincere non-Communist liberals. The contest had surfaced in the selection of delegates for the third party convention to be held in Philadelphia starting July 23. Non-Communists were departing the party in disgust in the Colorado and Wisconsin delegations. The problem might even prompt Henry Wallace to withdraw.

Until recently, Mr. Wallace had closed his eyes and refused to say anything about the matter, even when the Communist Party officially claimed credit for the third party movement. He had said in recent days, however, that the movement would gain votes by the departure of the Communists to their own ticket and that it would be the best help the Communists could provide.

The Communists had also expressed dissatisfaction with the efforts of Walter Reuther to rid the UAW of Communists.

It appeared that just as Tito was criticized for his defiance to Moscow dogma, so were Americans being subjected to excoriation for "deviationism", in the lingo of the Communist Daily Worker.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop discuss the Tito defiance to the Kremlin being tantamount to the largest event to rock Soviet unity since the purges of the Thirties. In Yugoslavia, an exception to the rest of Eastern Europe, the Communists did not need the Kremlin subsidies from the MVD. In the other countries, the leaders were men who came to power in the wake of the Soviet advances during the war. But in Yugoslavia, Tito came to power, along with the other Yugoslav leaders, through a local revolution, forming their own Communist Party during the war. Tito controlled his own Army, unlike in the other Soviet satellites. They resisted Soviet infiltration successfully, leading to the present open break with Moscow.

The Kremlin could not make deals with heretics and Tito had to know that if he submitted now to Moscow, his life thereafter would be short.

Tito had 36 divisions, now not subject to Moscow control. The strategic position of Yugoslavia was also lost to Russia for the nonce. As the State Department's George Kennan, architect of the Marshall Plan, had stated in an article titled "Mr. X", the situation confirmed the State Department theory that the combined pressures of Western competition and internal division would loosen the grip of Moscow on Eastern Europe, without the necessity of resort to force. The Yugoslav-Cominform conflict of the previous week had provided proof of the theory for the first time.

A letter from the executive director of the American Municipal Association in Chicago tells of that organization's goal to provide national municipal policy.

A letter from twice-failed Republican Congressional candidate P. C. Burkholder criticizes an editorial of June 28, which he believes tried to smear the Dewey administration before it had a chance to deal with Russia. He thinks the New Deal had appeased Stalin and that the newspaper was trying to convince readers that John Foster Dulles had a great deal to do with the policy of division of Germany between East and West. Mr. Burkholder does not like the New Deal.

Maybe he'll like the Fair Deal better, as it rhymes with the Republican Square Deal of TR.

A Quote of the Day: "The new Ford is a mighty interesting study if you are old enough to recall the days when the Tin Lizzie was called the greatest evangelist and given credit for having shaken the devil out of more people than Billy Sunday ever could." —Memphis Commercial-Appeal

Another Quote of the Day: "Sometimes in our less buoyant moods we sort o' wonder whether, after all, the world might not get along about as well if we still played checkers." —Columbus (Miss.) Commercial Dispatch

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