The Charlotte News
Monday, December 19, 1955
Site Ed. Note: The front page reports from Gettysburg that the President, heartened by the latest reports from his doctors on his continuing progress in recovery from his September 24 heart attack, was maintaining an easy-going schedule this date while winding up his final visit of the year to his Gettysburg farm. He was supposed to meet with Atomic Energy Commission chairman Lewis Strauss this date at the family home, but White House press secretary James Hagerty said that it was principally a social visit with a few official items thrown in. The following day, the President probably would drive to his office at the Gettysburg post office to confer with Dillon Anderson, his special assistant for national security matters. Otherwise, his Gettysburg schedule was free of official callers and he would confine his duties to telephone consultations and dictation of mail. He would return to Washington on Wednesday to spend Christmas with Mrs. Eisenhower, their son and daughter-in-law, and the three Eisenhower grandchildren, with a fourth expected shortly. A weekend examination by his doctors had indicated that he had made "excellent and encouraging progress" toward recovery, but his personal physician, Dr. Howard Snyder, said that it would be at least mid-February before it would be known how the President's damaged heart would behave under increasing mental and physical activity. Dr. Paul White, the Boston heart specialist who had been periodically seeing the President, had told a press conference the previous Saturday that it was possible for the President to live for years and be fully active, that "the future is in the lap of the gods." (Polytheistic Communist!) Following Christmas, the President would likely fly to Augusta, Ga., for warmer weather which the doctors had prescribed on Saturday. They said that they wanted him to get more exercise, including some golf practice shots, not possible in the climate in Gettysburg. Fore... Look out, neighbor.
Representative Carl Vinson of Georgia, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, said the previous night that the "traditional system of free, advertised bidding" had virtually been scrapped in the awarding of defense contracts, that the services had adopted "shocking" practices of awarding contracts through direct negotiation, possibly causing the unbalanced budget to persist. There was no immediate comment from the Pentagon. According to Mr. Vinson, of nearly 36.5 billion dollars worth of contracts awarded between the beginning of 1953 and the end of the previous fiscal year, only two billion dollars worth had been contracted for by advertised competitive bidding. He said that a ten percent reduction in the cost of those contracts would have balanced the Federal budget, and that advertised competition among skilled producers would have achieved that result at a minimum.
Representative Jamie Whitten of Mississippi said this date that the U.S. had followed a shortsighted policy by encouraging vast expansion of agricultural production in foreign countries, which added to world surpluses and was "dangerous to the future safety" of the U.S. He said that one of Russia's weakest points was its inability to meet its agricultural needs on a long-term basis, its desire being to devote its energies to the military, and that the U.S. had taken the short-range view, that if the U.S. farm commodities were made available to Russia such that it came to rely on them, then the U.S. could cut them off should a conflict arise. But despite full authority under the law to do so, the Administration had refused to sell surplus stocks of butter, wheat, cotton, etc., to Russia, while helping other countries expand their agricultural production and thereby form trade ties with Russia.
In Osaka, Japan, foreign orders for Japanese cotton yarns and fabrics had reached record levels in November, despite a November 22 Japanese Government shutdown on new U.S. export contracts. The Japan Cotton Yarn and Cloth Exporters Association said that 2.8 million pounds of yarn and 180.5 million square yards of cloth had been ordered, most of which was for the U.S., but also included orders from other countries. Canada's cloth purchases had soared to 8.6 million square yards, 4.5 times that of the previous month, and a ban on new Canadian cloth purchase contracts had been imposed this date, as Japan feared that part of the Canadian purchases might be filtering into the U.S., causing concern over U.S. complaints and a possible renewal of prewar "dumping" charges. Japan hoped to draft new export and marketing quotas.
In Berlin, a six-man Army court acquitted two U.S. soldiers this date of disorderly conduct charges based on their arrest in the Soviet sector of Berlin, ruling that the two men were not guilty of causing a brawl which had led to their arrest by East German police, followed by their release by the Russians. The East Germans had claimed that East Berlin was part of "sovereign" East Germany and demanded that their courts be allowed to try the men, but the Russians instead followed the four-power rules long in use in divided Berlin and returned the soldiers to U.S. authorities. A female refugee had testified this date that an East German cabaret performer had provoked an argument with the two soldiers at a Soviet sector bar on December 7 and that the German had repeatedly assailed the soldiers as "American swine", trying to attack one of them, at which point the soldier had hit him in self-defense. The witness said that she was hit on her way from East Germany to West Berlin when she saw the incident—even if that sentence of the report appears to be missing some facts, or "hit" was merely extraneous lead from some type-setter contemplating too hard visions of sugarplums. The soldiers testified that they had tried their best to get away from the cabaret performer so that they could return to West Berlin and that after the fracas, they had jumped in an East Berlin taxi, but the driver delivered them instead to the Communist police. One of the soldiers said that at the East Berlin police station, he was struck across the face and clubbed several times after he tried to stand up. The East Germans had turned them over to the Russians after a few hours and they said they had been questioned on the military details of their regimental unit by the Soviet authorities, but were not mistreated by them. The soldiers were returned to active duty after the court's decision. They didn't like the guy's act, maybe.
Senator Estes Kefauver, who had won the 1952 New Hampshire primary, said the previous day in a radio and television program broadcast on CBS that he would enter the primary and wanted to do battle with Adlai Stevenson there in 1956. There was no immediate word from the Stevenson camp regarding his entry to the primary, but one of his supporters said that he would seek election as a New Hampshire convention delegate pledged to Mr. Stevenson, whether or not the latter entered the primary. Senator Kefauver expressed the hope that "the snow and ice will not deter" Mr. Stevenson from coming to New Hampshire for the March 7 contest. The two would meet in the California primary on June 5 and Senator Kefauver said that he was also looking into possibly entering the Minnesota primary, where Mr. Stevenson was also slated to run. He also might challenge him in the Florida primary, where Mr. Stevenson was slated as a candidate.
Meanwhile, there were hints that Senator William Knowland might jump into the race for the Republican nomination before the President made his decision on whether he would run again, the Senator criticizing during the week the Administration's "acquiescence" in a package deal under which four Communist countries had been admitted to the U.N. the previous week along with 12 non-Communist nations, saying that it was a possible forerunner to a similar arrangement the following year which could bring Communist China into the U.N. He said in the interview that presidential aspirants of both parties ought pledge an American veto of Communist Chinese membership to the U.N.—a statement criticized below in an editorial.
In Phoenix, Ariz., it was reported that a 19-year old pilot had hiked out of the desert as search planes had almost given up finding him, after he had survived for five days without food or water. The student pilot had taken off from Phoenix the previous Monday on his first cross-country solo flight to Tucson, but had run out of gas that afternoon and landed on an Air Force gunnery range at the other end of the state, hopelessly lost. For the first three days, he had sat and waited, seeing jets overhead firing rockets and machine guns but were too high to spot him. He said that the desert floor all around him was covered with their bullets, shell casings, rockets stuck in the ground and tow targets. He said that the first two days were the hardest as he was very hungry, but never became very thirsty, and had to learn to breathe through his nose after his throat and mouth had dried out. He looked everywhere for water, digging in the sand, searching for barrel cactus which might contain water and around in the mountains for any sign of water. The temperature had dropped into the 30's at night, but he managed to stay warm. He still had about a quart of gas in the airplane and so used a dime to unscrew the spinner cover from the prop hub and put about an inch of gas in it, hooked it to the engine cowling and unhooked a spark plug wire, started the engine and the spark plug wire ignited the gas, to provide a flame. He had initially stayed with the plane on the belief that he could survive two or three days longer and could be spotted more easily from the air. Eventually, he started walking, following a pair of jeep tracks which were more heavily traveled than some others, walking all day on Saturday, and after about 35 miles, saw some lights, walked into a café and asked for a tall glass of water, which they provided him, along with soup and a ham sandwich. He said that he drank about 15 glasses of milk and then a sheriff's deputy had driven him to Yuma. He took two hot baths and a cold one, and finally got to bed. He said that 5 1/2 days without food and water were "pretty rough".
Near Springfield, O., five children and a 20-year old woman had burned to death early this date after fire had swept through a four-room frame bungalow three miles southwest of the town, with firemen believing that it resulted from an exploding coal oil stove. The father of two of the dead children, who had been living in the house with him and some other relatives, had escaped the blaze and managed to save his six-year old son, but the flames had prevented him from reaching the other six occupants, including his 20-year old niece and two of her children. He had suffered third-degree burns over 30 percent of his body and was in the hospital. His father had died the previous day, which was why the children were staying with their father overnight, and the niece had been keeping house for him.
Near Warsaw, Ind., Homer Rodeheaver, 75, former college cheerleader who had served for 20 years as evangelist Billy Sunday's chief musical aide, had died in his home in nearby Winona Lake the previous day after suffering a cerebral hemorrhage four days earlier. He had headed a gospel music publishing company and operated a ranch in Florida for underprivileged boys.
In Denton, Tex., a pizza bakery was
doing all right in the college town, run by two young women who had
gone into business without any formal training, one having a diploma
in English and the other having quit her job as a school teacher. In
the 2 1/2 weeks they had been in business, they had made enough
profit to pay off their original investment, baking on average 50
pizzas per day. They had been roommates several years earlier while
attending North Texas State College in Denton and then had talked
often of going into business together, needing a good idea. One had
thought of a pizzeria while in Florida during the summer and she and
the other woman began going to restaurants, lounges and bars in
Ann Sawyer of The News indicates that the State Highway Patrol working in Mecklenburg County would be asked to cooperate with the County police in escorting County school buses, a request to be made by the Board of County Commissioners in the wake of a seven-year old boy having been killed the previous week as he crossed a road to board a school bus, hit by a school teacher who said that she did not see him because the sun was striking her windshield at an angle, he was obscured by a mailbox on the right side of the road, and she did not see the bus stop-flap until she was about 20 feet from where he was crossing. It had been the first such accident in Mecklenburg since 1939. The Board was informed that the patrolmen could not escort each bus, as there were 181 school buses which carried 12,887 students every morning. It had been suggested that parents survey the hazards at bus stops and that one adult each morning accompany children at the bus stops. A member of the Board suggested that highway patrolmen would be of greater service in escorting the buses than working speed traps during the mornings.
Donald MacDonald of The News
reports that the County police had said this date that at least
three persons had made telephone calls to their headquarters during
the weekend complaining about the "noise" created by the
"Judean Hills" Christmas tableau ongoing nightly at the
Park Road Baptist Church. Volunteers from the church formed a living
tableau each night while the music from Handel's Messiah was
played over loudspeakers. The church was located just inside the city
limits and the program ended each night at 10:00. Park Road
residents, just outside the city limits, were complaining to the
County police, and the police informed them that they would have to
circulate a petition to have the program proclaimed a public
nuisance. The City police also reported during the weekend that
thieves had stolen Christmas tree lights from the outdoor trees of
two homes. That's pretty low. Did they also steal the baby Jesus from
the Nativity scene? As to the noisy church, get your own loudspeakers
and play some of that new Devil's music in retaliation...
In Windsor, Conn., a bloodhound which could not or would not track its way to its own home, returned to the family fireside this date, thanks to a newspaper photograph and several policemen, including its owner. A man had brought the hound to police headquarters on Saturday after finding it sitting on his doorstep. It then spent the weekend in Windsor's new dog pound, and the Hartford Courant had printed its picture on the front page. A Hartford policeman, whose home was on the Hartford-Windsor town line, saw the picture and called the Windsor police to claim his dog.
In Danbury, Conn., a municipal court judge had ruled that unless someone complained, persons who got drunk in private could not be arrested or, he said, "a lot of people in this state would be embarrassed." Probably among them would be that stupid hound dog, likely drunk as usual.
In Bridgeport, Conn., Santa is engaged in some ruthless, judgmental discrimination. Who is he to declare who is bad and who is good?
On the editorial page, "Sen. Knowland's Pointless Question" tells of Senator William Knowland of California, the Minority Leader, fearing for his friend Chiang Kai-shek, calling on presidential aspirants of both parties to say whether they would veto any future attempt to oust the Nationalists from the U.N. in favor of the Communist Chinese, intending to make Nationalist China's U.N. membership a moral question which no presidential candidate could afford to answer negatively without implying softness on Communism.
The piece finds it not that simple, as Chiang, himself, had affronted the majority of the U.N. by vetoing membership of Outer Mongolia and thereby wrecking a membership deal which would have brought 18 nations into the U.N. A revised package, which finally did enable membership for 16 nations, destroyed the principle that virtue ought determine a nation's fitness for membership under the principle of universality of membership. The principle was not opposed by the Administration, which had urged Chiang not to veto the package deal and had abstained from voting on the four satellite governments which were admitted, as well as on Outer Mongolia, to obtain admission of the 12 non-satellite nations.
It ventures that if the new principle was moral, then Chiang was the only moral ruler and his Formosan retreat, the only land where morality was in power.
China was a permanent member of the U.N. Security Council, but under U.N. rules, it was questionable whether the U.S., as one of the Big Five members of the Council, could exercise its unilateral veto to prevent a transfer of credentials from the Nationalists to the Communists of China should the majority of the Assembly so vote.
It finds that Senator Knowland's question would have been more to the point had he asked how the U.S. could save Chiang from himself, rather than demanding that all presidential candidates commit themselves to joining the veto parade led by Soviet Russia and by Chiang.
"Gov. Herter and the Exalted Office" indicates that political speculation on the Republican nominee, should the President decide not to run again, generally included Governor Christian Herter of Massachusetts, but little was known about him and the piece questions whether he was in the same league with Vice-President Nixon, Senator William Knowland, Chief Justice Earl Warren, Senator John W. Bricker, California Governor Goodwin Knight and Harold Stassen.
Governor Herter had won the gubernatorial race after giving up his seat in Congress in 1952, the year that current U.N. Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., had lost his Senate seat in Massachusetts to Congressman John F. Kennedy. Mr. Herter had beaten Paul Dever, the Democratic incumbent, after serving ten years in Congress and 13 terms in the State House of Representatives, of which he had been Speaker for four years. He had ties with both wings of the Republican Party, having been an agent during the 1920's, and later secretary, to Herbert Hoover in the postwar rehabilitation work, and had helped organize the Marshall Plan after 1947 while in Congress. In that latter work, he had met General Eisenhower in Europe, later helping to set up the movement to draft the General for the Republican nomination in 1952. The President still referred to him as his favorite Governor.
The Boston Herald had referred to Governor Herter as "the rare combination of patrician and politician." It gave him credit as Governor for high-caliber appointments, reorganization of an archaic state prison system, and establishment of a Department of Commerce to lure new industry. It described him as moderate, referring to his "conservatism on occasion and his liberalism when it is demanded." He opposed employment of professors at Harvard, his alma mater, who were so-called "Fifth Amendment professors", meaning that they took the Fifth Amendment rather than assent to loyalty oaths. But he also objected to a legislative committee's plans to publish names of citizens suspected of being Communists or subversives on the ground that it would be an invasion of their civil rights. The Herald said that there was no campaign in progress to promote Governor Herter for the presidential nomination, but that in the event the President would not run again, Massachusetts and probably all of New England would demand that his qualifications for the nomination be explored.
It fails, however, to consider the problems which his name would lend to parody by the Democrats in counter-sloganeering, such as: "Don't Go to the Lion's Den with Christian Herter in '56; Stick with Adlai and Estes, and You're In with Thumbs Down
"The Empty Stocking Fills Slowly" quotes from some letters received by the Empty Stocking Fund, a fund sponsored each year for 24 years by the newspaper for providing Christmas to indigent families in Mecklenburg County, commenting that the letters were almost always selfless, requesting aid for neighbors and friends. Through the Christmas Bureau, cash gifts were distributed to hundreds of families. But this year, the contributions were running behind and it suggests that some stockings might remain empty come Sunday morning on Christmas.
"It will be enough, we think, to make an observation that is not original with us: That the transformation wrought by such a thing as a doll in the home of the recipient is great, and that what happens to the giver is even greater."
A piece from the Rocky Mount Telegram, titled "Pity the Bathroom Singer", provides a mock memorandum from a representative of the unofficial "Order of Bathroom Singers" to all architects and builders, urging them to encourage homeowners to allow for greater bathroom space when making plans for new dwellings, against the modern trends of smaller bathrooms, eliminating the resonance which bolstered the voice during and after a bath or shower. It favors making the bathroom the largest room in the house.
It concedes that the likes of Enrico
Caruso, Bing Crosby, Don Cornell, Perry Como, and Eddie Fisher could
get along without the benefit of the bathroom resonance, even if a
couple of them might be somewhat in doubt, but for the average male,
there was the necessity of a good bathroom to echo his tones when he
lifted his voice into "The Last Rose of Summer"
It suggests that the man who
formerly compared himself to a sort of male Jenny Lind while taking
his morning shower, had sailed into a hearty breakfast and was
pleasant not only to his wife in the morning but also agreeable all
day long, whereas now, the same person found his bathroom voice "as
flat as the pancakes he's about to receive", and grumbled his
way through breakfast, making life miserable
Thus, it was critical for the building trades to undertake to build much larger bathrooms and build the rest of the house around that concept.
Drew Pearson says that RNC chairman Leonard Hall had first come to Washington at age 16, making $50 per month as a bookkeeper for the Potomac Electric Co., having saved enough to pay for his night school at Georgetown University. Now, 30 years later, he did not receive a cent for being RNC chairman but was scraping together plans for building up a new foundation for his party following the illness of the President. When asked what he would do if the President did not run again, he had stated earlier in Denver that he "would jump over that bridge when I come to it." Now that he had reached that bridge, however, he was building rather than jumping, with plans which he had not yet announced, though still believing that the President would run again, but in private not being so sure. He was determined to recast the party in the image of the President, even should he choose not to run. And that meant that conservative candidates such as Senator William Knowland of California and Senator John W. Bricker of Ohio were unacceptable.
Mr. Hall understood that the President was more popular with voters than was the Republican Party and so hoped to give the party the Eisenhower personality, utilizing five survey teams studying local problems, issues and candidates, and expecting to hire at least four Madison Avenue advertising agencies to glamorize the party. Most importantly, he wanted to develop younger members of the party.
As a county courthouse politician, he was rebuilding the party at the precinct level, reshuffling the local leaders, recruiting volunteer workers, and rekindling enthusiasm with a constant stream of political propaganda from party headquarters. His immediate goal was to obtain votes from the big city Democratic strongholds and ultimately hoped to obtain votes even from the solid South. He understood, however, that it would take attractive candidates and a smooth operating party machinery to do so.
Joseph & Stewart Alsop indicate that the country had not yet been told the true story of the following fiscal year's defense budget, which could perhaps turn out to be a life-and-death story for every American. The Administration had announced an increase of about a billion dollars in defense spending, raising the total to about 35.5 billion. Great efforts had been made to provide the impression that the concession to the requirements of national defense was both generous and adequate, but nothing could be more misleading.
Spending in the current fiscal year had been held down by savings on a very large scale, especially in the Air Force, savings which were not possible for the following year, causing a substantial increase in spending to have been necessary in any case to avoid serious cuts in defense capability.
The Killian Report on guided missile development had also forced the Administration policymakers to face an unpleasant fact, that the U.S. was behind the Soviet Union in guided missile technology and was getting further behind, such that substantial sums would have to be spent to catch up. The National Security Council had voted sometime earlier to provide high priority to guided missile development, requiring an increase in spending by about 600 million dollars, or 60 percent of the entire announced increase in the budget for defense.
Secretary of Defense Charles E. Wilson, prompted by the Budget Bureau and the Treasury Department, had sought to hold the budget at the current level, with the intent of borrowing enough money from the existing budget to provide for the guided missile development program and offset the one-time savings which had reduced the budget for the current year. But in the end, the resistance had been too great and further concealed cuts in fighting power were not made.
After producing 15,000 MIG-15 fighters, the Soviets were rapidly replacing those planes with the superior "Farmer" and "Flashlight" day and night fighters, a fact which had become obvious the previous spring, at which time Secretary Wilson had declared that money was available from existing Air Force funds to increase procurement of advanced fighters, the F-101B, the F-102 night fighter, and the F-104, the increase in production of which the Secretary promised to order immediately, but then broke that promise. Nearly six months had gone by before increased fighter procurement was finally ordered and the increase was not substantial, with the next budget providing only for a small number of superior fighters for the Air Force. The result was that the Soviet Air Force was presently ahead of the U.S. Air Force in production of advanced types of planes in every important category except the medium-range jet bombers represented by the U.S. B-47's. The output of B-52's was still lagging well behind the Soviet output of "Bisons" in the same long-range jet bomber category. Yet, the appropriations in the new defense budget would give the country about 30 percent fewer new aircraft than had been ordered under the current budget.
Such was only one example of the lag behind the Soviets, and the Alsops indicate that others could be cited, such as the fact that the Soviets were presently redoing the core of their huge ground forces for atomic war, while the U.S. Army had only been permitted to make that vital conversion in one division, with two additional test divisions partly converted.
They conclude that the real problem was phony publicity and misleading token gestures concealing the central fact that the Soviets had spent and were continuing to spend to build a large-scale modern force at all times, while the U.S. was not doing anything of the sort, such that if U.S. soldiers and airmen had to go into combat, they would not only be heavily outnumbered by the enemy but also would be utilizing weapons inferior to those of the enemy. They indicate that perhaps the budget-balancers were correct, that the U.S. could not afford to pay the bill for survival, but that if such was the national policy, it should be admitted to the country.
Doris Fleeson tells of Governor Frank Lausche of Ohio intending to take his 58-member delegation to the Democratic national convention the following summer as a solid bloc for bargaining purposes, hoping that he would be nominated as the vice-presidential candidate, at very least hoping to obligate the presidential nominee to him in such a way that he would be assured of a top job in the next Administration, should the Democrat win.
As a Catholic, he understood that the presidency was beyond his reach but had been encouraged to believe that the vice-presidency might be open to a Catholic.
He had spent virtually his entire adult life in public office, having been Governor of Ohio for five terms, and did not wish to return to the private practice of law as it would not match his present status and standard of living. He also did not wish to wind up in a minor Federal post. He might still decide to run for the Senate against incumbent Republican Senator George Bender and most observers believed he would win. But he was uncertain about whether he would like the Senate, as former Governors often found it boring after wielding executive power.
He had been Governor for two years when he was defeated for re-election in 1947 and private life had no appeal for him, causing him to seek a position in the Federal Government under President Truman, finding, however, that the President, having at the time his own troubles with the 80th Congress, did not want to take him on because the Ohio Democratic Party was disorganized and Governor Lausche had a reputation of being a lone wolf. Thus, nothing was offered that appealed to the Governor and he returned to Ohio, since having developed a coolness toward Washington and toward former President Truman.
A letter writer suggests that the Mecklenburg and Charlotte Ministerial Association was rushing "headlong and pell mell into a full-blown Yankee-motivated integration with all the rotten trimmings." He finds that move unnecessary, believes that all organization, whether state or church, ought be free and voluntary, but that instead, the Protestant leadership was "always ready to tear its little red shirt for what Gotham is thought to have suggested."
Holy cheeses, Batman.
A letter writer responds to a previous letter writer who had said that God made everyone, which this writer says was true but that the previous writer had not indicated that God's plan was shown by Genesis, chapter 9, verses 25 through 27, which he suggests should be interpreted as setting the white man and black man in "separate habitations", and that no white man could change God's plan to work satisfactorily. He questions whether the NAACP "suing everybody and his brother" was brotherly love, finding that the leaders of the NAACP reminded him of the Bible story of the two women claiming a single baby such that the court had ordered that it be cut in half and that each one be given half, with the judge able to discover the rightful mother by the one who agreed to go ahead and provide the whole baby to the other claimant. "So the NAACP says if we can't get in your swimming pool with you, then we will see to it that you won't have one. Is that brotherly love or Christian?" He says that blacks would never be the equal of whites "as long as this world stands", regardless of how many lawsuits they would win. "God made all things good. If it is used according to His plan. But when man uses it contrary, then it becomes bad. A gun rightfully used is good, but for murder it is bad."
So, if God uses a gun, it is good.
But it is bad if the Devil uses a gun. What book is that from?
A letter writer, who withholds his or her name, hopes that people would stop writing and saying that God wanted people to be mixed together, "for if that were true, he would have made us all colored or white. I know that if we all read the Bible, we would read what He says." The person thinks that people should follow the urging of Governor Luther Hodges and voluntarily continue with segregated public schools, as the writer is convinced that if the schools were to become desegregated, there would be a war. "We should thank God for a place to live, and abide by what the Governor says, and you will find out in the end who is right. But start mixing, and I'm afraid of trouble."
There has always been and there always will be trouble somewhere every day over something. What is your point?
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