The Charlotte News

Thursday, August 5, 1954


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that, according to a procedural resolution adopted by the Senate, Vice-President Nixon this date had appointed a six-member Senate special committee to investigate the conduct of Senator McCarthy, pursuant to the resolution of censure presented by Senator Ralph Flanders, and the additional bills of particulars presented by other Senators. The members of the committee would be Senator Arthur Watkins of Utah, Frank Carlson of Kansas, Francis Case of South Dakota, Edwin Johnson of Colorado, John Stennis of Mississippi, and Sam Ervin of North Carolina. Mr. Nixon did not actually make the selections, but rather they had been made by party leaders on each side. Senate Minority Leader Lyndon Johnson had announced, after a meeting during the early morning of the Senate Democratic policy committee, that it had selected men who were "symbols for patriotism, integrity and judicial temperament". He said that two of them, Senators Ervin and Stennis, had distinguished careers as jurists, while a third, Senator Edwin Johnson, was one of the most "beloved and respected senior Senators" on the minority side. On the Republican side, Senator Watkins was a former judge in Utah, Senator Carlson was a former Governor of Kansas, and Senator Case had served 12 years in the House, where he had been a member of HUAC before coming to the Senate in 1949. Senator Karl Mundt of South Dakota, who had presided over the recent McCarthy-Army hearings, said that he predicted the inquiry could last two or three months.

Russia's new proposal for a Big Four foreign ministers meeting was officially regarded in Washington as part of a persistent drive to wreck Western anti-Communist defenses and eventually destroy U.S. leadership of the free world, with U.S. officials stating that Britain and France stood firmly with the U.S. in opposing that campaign, forecasting that the Russian proposal would be rejected by joint decision of the Big Three. The immediate primary aim of the Soviets was to block West German rearmament, proposing, instead of the Western-sponsored European Defense Community, an overall European security system. The proposed EDC would rearm West Germany which would join five other nations in a united army. The latest Soviet proposal suggested a Big Four conference in August or September to discuss the calling of a big all-European conference on European security and on some problems related to Germany.

From London, it was reported that Communist China had refused even to accept a second U.S. protest against the shooting down of the British airliner off Hainan Island the previous month, in which three Americans had been among the ten persons killed. The State Department had announced on July 29 that the Communist Chinese had turned down U.S. protests on both that incident and the subsequent attack on two U.S. rescue planes, seeking to rescue survivors from the downed airliner. The Chinese contended that the U.S. had no interest in the airliner incident, that it was between the Chinese and British, and that the rescue planes had been over Communist Chinese territory at the time of the attack on them. In the latter incident, the attacking planes were shot down and there was no damage to the American planes or injury to the pilots.

The Senate Finance Committee voted this date to lift temporarily, by six million dollars, the present 275 billion dollar Federal debt ceiling.

In Tennessee, an apparent record turnout of Tennessee Democrats had voted this date in the Senate primary between incumbent Senator Estes Kefauver, seeking his second term, and challenger Congressman Pat Sutton. Voters were also drawn to the gubernatorial race between incumbent Governor Frank Clement and former Governor Gordon Browning.

In Tehran, representatives of eight large Western oil companies and the Iranian Government had announced an agreement this date to resume Iran's frozen oil industry, and indicated their hope to begin shipping at least some of the oil again within about two months. Under the agreement, the eight companies would operate as a consortium the large Abadan refinery and surrounding oilfields, would purchase the oil output from Iran and sell the production abroad, with Iran retaining title to the fields and refining facilities. The resolved dispute had been ongoing for three years. Informed sources said that the rate of payment would be virtually the same 50-50 split which prevailed elsewhere in the Middle East. It was estimated that Iran would receive direct oil revenue and taxes of about 420 million dollars during the first three years of the agreement, with more than 187 million in the third year, larger than Iran's pre-nationalization oil revenue. Nationalization had taken place in 1951 under now-imprisoned former Premier Mohammed Mossadegh. The agreement would run for 25 years, with provisions for three five-year extensions. The eight companies of the consortium were Britain's Anglo-Iranian, shortly to become British Petroleum, Standard Oil of New Jersey, Standard Oil of California, Texaco, Gulf Oil, Socony-Vacuum, Shell and Compagnie Francaise de Petroles—eventually to wind up with the consortium, in 1979, becoming the French-Kiss My Holy-Oily Ayatollah, which led the U.S., after all the yellow ribbons were tied around the old oak tree, to its new savya, Ron of Holy-Wormwood—and the rest, as they say....

In Tokyo, it was heard from Moscow radio this date that a barter trade agreement had been signed between Communist China and Indonesia, under which Communist China would export cotton, textiles, light industry machinery, and Indonesia would provide copra, coffee, quinine and other raw materials.

In Pekin, Ill., homes were evacuated this date near a distillery after fire and civil workers were summoned out of fear of new blasts which could knock down other storage buildings, where inflammable alcohol was stored. Eight persons were believed to have been killed, with one known dead and seven missing, and more than 30 injured in the two explosions and fires since Wednesday morning. About 110,000 barrels of aging whiskey had been destroyed, causing the cost of the fire to be in the millions of dollars. The plant burning during the morning was 70 feet from a building where 600,000 gallons of alcohol were stored.

In Montreat, N.C., policies regarding segregation at the Presbyterian retreat remained unchanged, by vote of the previous day. The action was contrary to the recommendations of the 94th General Assembly of the Southern Presbyterian Church, which had urged that segregation be abolished in Assembly-controlled institutions. The only institution affected by the vote the previous night was the Mountain Retreat Association at Montreat. The Assembly controlled two other institutions, the Training School at Richmond, which already had practiced non-segregation, and its college at Tuscaloosa, Ala., which was all-black.

In Frankfurt, West Germany, a U.S. Army colonel ducked behind his combat ribbons and distinguished World War II combat record this date, as the wrath of a thousand American women descended upon him, after he had issued an order advising Army wives and daughters in Frankfurt to spruce up and tone down their dress, saying that some American women were wearing attire "not in good taste", warning that if they did not do something about it, "positive action" would be taken. The order outlawed bare-back, halter-type sunsuits worn without a jacket or wrap, bare midriff costumes, strapless, low-cut dresses, except in clubs or at social functions, shorts on teenagers, blue jeans on mature women, and pin curlers, unless neatly covered. One of the women said that their freedom was being threatened, but the colonel said that there had already been a big improvement and that someone had to tip the women off as to how they looked.

On the editorial page, "McCarthy, Marshall and Eisenhower" wonders why Senator McCarthy persistently attacked General Marshall. Senator McCarthy, in his book, America's Retreat from Victory: The Story of George Catlett Marshall, had stated that the fact that 152 million Americans were officially asked by the Democrats to adopt General Marshall's "global strategy" in 1951, during a period of time when the life of the civilization hung in the balance, "would seem to make it imperative that his complete record be subjected to the searching light of public scrutiny."

The piece indicates that most Americans were appreciative of General Marshall's contributions to "global strategy", as chief of staff of the Army during World War II, as Secretary of State in 1947-48, and as Secretary of Defense in 1950-51, at a time, in the latter service, when the military had to rebuild quickly for the fight in Korea. It finds that Senator McCarthy's "distorted and unfair attacks" were resented by Americans, that General Marshall's excellent record remained intact despite attempts to besmirch it by a Senator who usually succeeded in his smear tactics. It posits that the refusal of the General to climb into the gutter with Senator McCarthy had no doubt infuriated the Senator and caused him to continue his attacks.

It finds that the President's praise of General Marshall at his press conference the previous day had been proper and deserved, and that he should have so spoken of him two years earlier, when he had been persuaded by Senator McCarthy and political advisers to delete praise of the General from a Wisconsin campaign speech. It posits that had he done so and in other ways refused to mollify Senator McCarthy's supporters, the Senator would not be causing such concern at present. It regards the President's decision to have been understandable based on his political inexperience and noble hopes during the campaign, that he was now wiser politically, but still unfortunately reluctant to use his power as head of the Republican Party "to cut Senator McCarthy down to size."

It suggests that the Senate would have censured Senator McCarthy by this point and stripped him of his committee powers had the President exercised his power. As it was, Senator McCarthy remained as the "chief distraction from world problems and campaign issues", and would continue to do so until the President and the Senate would act firmly.

"Street Names" congratulates the City Planning Board for starting a study of street name duplications in Charlotte, believes it could do a definite service to the community by eliminating such confusing duplication.

"Joint Planning Is the Only Solution" again urges that a joint Mecklenburg-Charlotte planning board would be essential to meet future expansion of the community, hopes that the proposal would be adopted by the City Council and the County Commission.

"A Nomination" indicates that the Eastern North Carolina Republican Club had given what it called the "Trumanism Award", presented for "outstanding disservice to the Republican Party", awarded to Senator Ralph Flanders for his anti-McCarthy stance. The scroll accompanying the award said that it was made to commemorate the "enthusiastic collaboration" of Senator Flanders with the Republicans' "most deadly enemies in their attempts to stultify and confuse [the party]."

The piece suggests that a more deserving recipient would be the Eastern North Carolina Republican Club.

"You Can't Order Rocky Mountain Trout" finds something fishy about the "Rocky Mountain trout bill", of which Drew Pearson had remarked in his column two days earlier, which would require restaurant managers to print on their menus the name of the region from which the trout had come, based on the desire, according to Mr. Pearson, of Rocky Mountain Congressmen to promote the sale of Rocky Mountain trout and discourage import of European varieties—one of the bills being rushed through Congress at the close of the session to accommodate special interests.

It suggests that it prefers to believe that the action had been based on noble motives, that the Congressmen knew that effite Eastern trout and un-American trout were simply no match for their rugged trout of the Locksa, the Bitterroot, the Gallatin, and other cascading streams of the great Northwest. It assures that one could not appreciate the delicacies of those trout in a restaurant, even one along Route 10 between Missoula and Spokane, where one could catch one's own fish in the adjacent pool and hand it over for preparation by the restaurant. Such kept trout, it assures, lacked the "lip-smacking savor" of the self-caught trout in one's own bailiwick, prepared by the fisherman and cooked over an open fire. It suggests that only then, could one eat Rocky Mountain trout, regardless of what a menu said.

It also wonders whether the widely-advertised "Kansas City steaks" had ever been west of the Mississippi and how many "Virginia hams" were produced each year in North Carolina.

The references to Montana, incidentally, suggest this piece to have been authored by associate editor Vic Reinemer, who was now writing the bulk of the editorial column since July 31 and the departure of editor Pete McKnight for a year-long leave, which eventually would become permanent after he would be hired as editor of the Charlotte Observer the following July. Any noticeable change in flavor of the editorials between the present time and the following March, when Mr. Reinemer would depart for his native Montana to become executive secretary to Senator James Murray, can be ascribed, at least in part, to that change. Cecil Prince, to become associate editor October 1, 1955, had also been hired to assist in editorial writing. It is also likely that, on occasion, executive editor Brodie Griffith, employed by the newspaper in various capacities since 1923, was contributing editorials.

A piece from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, titled "Better Jolly Well Look Out", indicates that the British Foreign Office, which had done a pretty good job on the whole, maintained a list of "unhealthy" places from which its diplomats got extra vacation time to make up for the hardships of serving where temperature and humidity inflicted genuine punishment. It included ports "under the cloudless skies of the Gulf of Aden, Tunisian towns seared by the shrieking sirocco, habitations beside the burning banks of Burma's brassy Irrawaddy, settlements in the seething stretches of Pakistan's Upper Sind and villages on the sweltering bends of Africa's fever-ridden Congo." It also included St. Louis, much to the consternation of the Chamber of Commerce, until St. Louis got through the summer of 1948 with a high of only 99 degrees, and since had been removed from the tropical list. It comments, however, that with the current weather, it might be returned to that list.

Drew Pearson indicates that the "New Look" for the military had been abandoned at the Pentagon, as additional military cuts would not be made, and the President's hope of balancing the budget was being chalked up privately as a sincere but hopeless aim. The change had occurred from pessimistic reports on the international situation, plus the continuing insistence of Army chief of staff General Matthew Ridgway that the infantry had to continue to be important, despite the atomic bomb. General James Van Fleet, former U.S. commander in Korea, had given one such pessimistic report after making a survey for the President of the Far East, his military thinking coinciding with that of President Syngman Rhee of South Korea, namely that the U.S. should resume the war in Korea, a position which had been rejected by the Administration. General Van Fleet had warned that the Chinese Communists were going to invade Formosa and, if that were successful, it would mean that the last vestiges of the Chinese Nationalists would disappear and that the U.S. would have far less chance to exclude Communist China from the U.N., where Nationalist China sat on the Security Council as one of the five permanent members with the unilateral veto. Such an invasion would make ridiculous the White House announcement the previous year, in fulfillment of a campaign promise, that the U.S. Seventh Fleet was being relieved of its job of preventing the Nationalists from attacking the Chinese mainland. General Van Fleet had indicated that Formosa would have to be protected again and that the idea of using the Nationalist troops either in Korea or Indo-China was pure politics.

AFL commentator Frank Edwards had been staging one of his broadcasts from the radio press room of Congress during the recent filibuster of the atomic energy bill, and had as his guest Senator Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota, who had crusaded against the bill, which would give control of atomic production to private industry. Mr. Edwards had been rehearsing before the broadcast was set to air, and through the glass door of the radio studio, appeared to be live, reading from the script aloud as Senator Humphrey entered the room, at which point Mr. Edwards pointed him to a chair and continued talking, pretending to introduce Senator Humphrey to the audience as being up for re-election and adopting a policy of "to hell with the people of Minnesota", prompting Senator Humphrey to jump up from his chair, until he realized that it was still five minutes before air time.

The strangest Senate race of the year was for the unexpired term of the late Senator Dwight Griswold of Nebraska, with his successor to serve only for two months in November and December, during a time when the Senate would not be in session, such that the interim Senator would never even be sworn in and would never take his seat, would never even come to Washington. Yet, 16 candidates had filed for the short-term office and were campaigning throughout Nebraska, buying advertising, sending out letters, and making fantastic promises to the voters, some promising to follow the President's policies while others offered more conservative promises. Only one candidate was frankly admitting to the voters that he wanted the job simply for the honor and prestige, former Congressman Mac Baldridge.

The campaign forces of Congressman Pat Sutton in Tennessee, running against Senator Estes Kefauver in the Democratic primary, had appealed to pro-Fascist Allan Zoll for funds to defeat the Senator.

House Democratic Whip, Congressman John McCormack of Massachusetts, had never missed dining with his wife in 34 years of marriage.

Senator McCarthy privately had sought to persuade Senator Homer Capehart of Indiana not to call his Texas oil friend Clint Murchison, Jr., as a witness in the housing scandals, but Senator Capehart had refused to go along.

"Cowboy" Pink Williams, whose "cattlemen's convention" card, inviting all cattlemen who voted for President Eisenhower to eat crow, had been banned from the mails the previous month, had nevertheless won the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor of Oklahoma.

In Texas, future House Speaker Jim Wright won his House race in the Democratic primary despite his father's firm having received a political crackdown from the Post Office Department.

Doris Fleeson indicates that it was clear that the Republicans, during the fall midterm elections, would boast of peace as their primary campaign claim of accomplishment, and that from it had flowed the ability to make tax cuts, budget cuts and to stabilize prices. Communist successes would be blamed again on the Democrats and former Secretary of State Acheson. The case of the late Harry Dexter White, from 1948, would be dramatized on film, and it was rumored that Attorney General Herbert Brownell was planning some new indictments in the fall.

The shape of the peace campaign had been proceeding since the spring, after Vice-President Nixon had suggested in April that U.S. troops might be needed in the Indo-China war if the French were to withdraw, a position from which the Administration had quickly retreated. The recent visit of South Korean President Syngman Rhee had exposed the difference between the rhetoric of the Administration and its willingness to undertake actual sanctions against the Communists. In a New York interview, President Rhee had said bitterly that "short-sighted United States policy" had made it impossible to achieve unification of Korea, which he regarded as essential to the future of all of Asia and the free nations, that "Americans have not got the common guts to face the problem". During his appearance before the joint session of Congress, he had asked the U.S. to undertake what would amount to a preventive war by using air and naval forces against Communist China, while the South Korean Army would attack in North Korea, to push the Communists out of Korea and reunite it. But the joint communiqué with the President issued at the end of their discussions indicated that the Administration was not supportive of that strategy.

A week earlier, a similar message was conveyed to Chiang Kai-shek and the Nationalist Chinese, via the U.S. Ambassador to Formosa, Carl Rankin.

President Rhee had seen the pro-Asian campaign of the Republicans succeed and apparently believed that such allies as Joint Chiefs chairman Admiral Arthur Radford, Senate Majority Leader William Knowland, and General James Van Fleet had aroused enough sentiment that his personal appearance would catalyze it. But that had not occurred, and Congress, while greeting him personally with warmth, had not been responsive to his calls for war.

Some Senators had been critical of Secretary of State Dulles for his inflammatory rhetoric, such as "massive retaliation" and "unleashing Chiang Kai-shek", insisting that those phrases were meaningless. Republican political strategists were satisfied that peace, therefore, would be a good campaign issue. Postmaster General Arthur Summerfield, former RNC chairman, had suggested that it should be the major issue.

Marquis Childs, in Bonn, West Germany, indicates that West German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer would interrupt his holiday during the week to go to Brussels for a meeting of the Council of Europe, to meet with French Premier Pierre Mendes-France to work out adjustments that the latter considered essential if the French National Assembly was to ratify the European Defense Community treaty to form a unified Western European Army. The adjustment would not mean basic changes in the treaty but rather interpretations for the Assembly so that, after EDC came into being, the Council of Ministers could make the changes within the EDC framework. At the same time, the settlement of the Saar, the province between France and Germany with its rich coal and steel industry, would go into effect, as the settlement of it was said to be 99 percent complete following lengthy negotiations.

West German Vice-Chancellor Franz Blucher had spoken with Mr. Childs, making it evident that Germany would not accept the kind of limited sovereignty under discussion in France as an alternative to EDC. EDC had been ratified by West Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg and Holland, with only France and Italy remaining. If it did not come into being, a great gap would occur, and Britain and the U.S. had proposed that if France did not act, they would grant sovereignty to West Germany and end their occupation, leaving the French zone still under occupation, rendering yet another division of already divided Germany. The U.S. High Commissioner in West Germany, James B. Conant, foresaw serious turmoil within Germany should EDC fail to come to fruition, explaining the official optimism within the Adenauer Government and within the High Commission. Herr Blucher was even willing to look beyond the ratification of EDC, suggesting that after it was formed and the German divisions were equipped, it would be time for another four-power conference with the Russians, but that the latest Soviet invitation should be refused and within the year, to satisfy the widespread demand in Britain and Western Europe, there should be a big four meeting. He believed that unification of East and West Germany could be effected peaceably after EDC had given Europe such strength that the Russians would understand that they could no longer succeed with divide-and-conquer tactics. Vice-Chancellor Blucher played an equally important role in the Bonn Government as Vice-President Nixon in the U.S., and saw unification resulting from prolonged negotiation with the Soviets. The Russians feared not so much the loss of East Germany, itself, as the defection of Poland and Czechoslovakia under pressure from the West, and, therefore, negotiations could be made to provide as a quid pro quo for Soviet withdrawal from East Germany assurances that the West would respect the present Communist status of Poland and Czechoslovakia.

Marion L. Starkey, writing in the Boston Globe, indicates that more than two and a half centuries after the Salem witch trials of 1692, Massachusetts was finally closing its accounts with the "witches", as a State committee had approved a bill to "reverse the attainders, judgments and convictions for witchcraft" of all the condemned whose convictions remained a matter of record.

Representative William Nourse of Medfield had appeared before the committee as a descendant of a saintly grandmother who had been hanged in Salem for witchcraft.

He suggests that it might be hard for some people and not so for others to understand how such a scare could have started in Massachusetts. It had begun early in 1692 when several little girls of Salem village, presently Danvers, had fallen into convulsions which the village doctor presumed to result from "the evil eye". It meant that witches were about and only atheists in those times denied the existence of witches. Ministers first worked on the girls, praying with them, asking them to name their tormentors, soon inducing them to name members of the community who had already been the subject of gossip.

Bridget Bishop, who liked to wear scarlet and permitted such sinful sports as shuffleboard in her tavern, was one so named, along with the vagrant Sarah Good, and Sarah Osborne, whose private life had been questionable. The girls had seen one witch they could not name and were pressed to continue probing their visions and dreams until they ended by accusing some of the most respected members of the adjacent communities, even including the wife of Sir William Phips, Governor of Massachusetts.

The acceptance of "spectral evidence" by the judges made it impossible for the accused to defend themselves, permitting into evidence, for instance, a child's statement that Bridget Bishop had turned herself into a little yellow bird perched on the meeting house rafters, as proof of the latter's witchcraft. Dreams and hallucinations were also allowed into evidence.

Most of those accused had put up an heroic fight for their lives. John Proctor had been accused and condemned when he defended his wife Elizabeth. John Willard, a constable, was convicted when he refused to make any further arrests of decent people whom he knew by all the laws of common sense were innocent. Many had fled for their lives. Others among the accused learned that by "confessing" and by adding testimony of their own to that of the accusers, they could save themselves. Their lives were safe as long as they continued "confessing" and implicating their friends. But once they refused, as had Samuel Wardwell of Andover, they were condemned and hanged.

By late 1692, there had been a wave of repentance for the wrongs done to innocent people, and Judge Samuel Sewall and the entire witchcraft jury made a public confession, praying for pardon, as did one of the most active and sincere of the girls, Ann Putnam.

After 1700, a movement began to provide public restitution to some of the survivors of the trials and the families of the 19 persons who had been hanged. Judgments were reversed as to a dozen of those who had been put to death, including the Rev. George Burroughs, Rebecca Nurse, Elizabeth and John Proctor, and Giles and Martha Cory.

Seven others had not been cleared, however, probably, hypothesizes Mr. Starkey, because they had no one available to plead their cases. Those included John Willard, the courageous constable who refused to make arrests, Samuel Wardwell, who denounced his own confession and was hanged, Ann Pudeator, Bridget Bishop, Alice Parker, Margaret Scott and Wilmot Redd. The latter seven now had finally been cleared by the State of Massachusetts.

Query whether present practices in the society generally, whereby unsubstantiated claims and rumors, deriving in most instances from subjectively hurt feelings from statements which no stable individual over the age of 15 would regard as significant or anything more than playful banter, and in other instances, when they realize that imputed statements alone will not suffice to attract sympathy, from claims of offensive touching or the like, arising from either public conduct which, again, for its incidental nature, no one over the age of 15 would find disturbing, or private conduct not witnessed by any credible third party, resulting—, thanks to a spineless press instantly jumping onto the side of the accuser for either ratings or fear that inveighing against such unfounded accusation might subject the defender of the accused to become the object of collective ridicule by the horde of accusers who always step forward in packs on such occasions with years-old claims, the me-tooers, as wild dogs slavering for the slaughter—, finally in the destruction of careers or loss of position, is anything very different from the hysteria which beset Salem in 1692, absent the actual hangings, or, more to the point, the Nixonian McCarthyism which beset the country, starting in 1947 and continuing, in one form or another, until the resignation of President Nixon in 1974.

This junk needs to end, giving credence to such baseless claims, the sum of zeroes always still being zero, no matter how many zeroes are lined up in seriatim outside the receptive tv studio, usually marshaled and coached in their performances by lawyers or other directors willing to prostitute themselves for notoriety, to permit the National Enquirer-"reading" portion of the public to hear the obviously bogus stories, obvious to anyone at least without a financial or political interest in the story being related, lest the society be dragged down into the abyss of mediocrity, as the actual aim of these flunkies is to "get" those who are more successful than they, or who, in some supervisory capacity or position of potential assistance to them, overlooked their obvious talents, to "teach them a lesson", because the flunkies were unable to make it. They are obviously liars, not people who "speak truth to power", but simple liars, with severe personality flaws if not mental illness, on the make for some recognition, in the hope that their overlooked, obvious talents will finally be regarded by the society—much as were Whittaker Chambers and Elizabeth Bentley in 1948 and a whole host of professional “reformed Communist” accusers who followed until the public finally got wise to the overall political aim of the litany of claims and became sick of it.

Such accusers mount their high horses, bound and determined to wreck the country, to substitute for competent leadership incompetent boobs, people such as they are, some of whom have now been elected even to Congress, who will "listen" to their lies, even though the liars, themselves, aside from an occasional book deal, rarely get anywhere after their accusation du jour has run its course in the nightly news cycle and ruined or at least besmirched the object of the accusation.

An ancillary effect of permitting such conduct to have traction is to diminish the impact of credible and documented charges of actual graft and corruption among public officials, to bring about a type of relativism such that the defenders of corruption can assert, with some apparent credit based on prior media reports, even if actually using only a talking-points tool to dodge the substantive issue, that so-and-so touched that woman inappropriately and so why are they after so-and-so when all he did was try to influence his election by the people by engaging in the same tricks they all do. It's all the same thing, ain't it?

The ultimate problem, however, lies with the spineless press which, for the past 40 years or so and increasingly, gives such liars voice, that they might obtain their 15 minutes, not by achievement in their own right, but rather through dragging down others into their own mire and morass of lies and deception.

The worst of this skein of conduct started coincident with the advent of 24-hour cable news, as the standard news on a given day is never worth more than about an hour of coverage per day, except in the most extraordinary of circumstances, and so the broadcasters, to maintain their sponsors, have to attract viewers somehow, seeking out the lesser lights to fill the gaps with gossip, the lowest common denominator, the devils of our natures, to benight rather than enlighten, the latter supposed to be the object of the news media when not yellowed.

A letter writer from Florence, S.C., indicates that a recent article in the newspaper had stated that a doctor from Kansas City had inspected the Spastics Hospital in Charlotte and made a favorable report, but that he had not seen what the writer had seen when he visited the hospital recently through the courtesy of a friend who had access, causing the writer revulsion: the mixing of races in the hospital, blacks and whites side-by-side. "These poor little children who didn't know any better and couldn't do anything to help themselves if they did know; and their parents are probably helpless financially to such an extent that, for the sake of their afflicted children, they couldn't protest." He says that he is from South Carolina, but feels it was an issue on which "any white person should and is entitled to speak out", and he makes no apology for same. He indicates that his friend had stated that there was no need for the mixing of the races, that it would cause no inconvenience to keep the children separated, adds that it would never occur in South Carolina.

We have no doubt of that, you stupid moron.

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