The Charlotte News

Saturday, November 2, 1946


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that in West Virginia, the number of coal miners who had stayed off the job increased as meetings begun the previous day in Washington between UMW representatives and the Government to determine first whether the May 29 contract formed between the Government and the union was subject to being reopened and renegotiated, took a weekend recess. The absent miners were following a strict "no contract, no work" policy. The Government was trying to impress on the miners that the contract remained in force.

The UMW made clear on Friday that it was demanding a shorter work week based on the same pay. They presently were receiving $75.35 based on a 54-hour week, with everything over 35 hours being considered overtime with time-and-a-half pay. The Government merely listened.

Foreign Commissar V. M. Molotov denied that there was any variation between his statement the previous Tuesday to the U.N. General Assembly, favoring international disarmament, and that of Josef Stalin, published the previous Monday in response to a journalist's questions.

The London Daily Express weapons expert, Chapman Pincher, estimated that the U.S. had about 96 atomic bombs, each powered by 100 pounds of plutonium and weighing about 9,000 pounds and 25 feet in length, allowing for the plutonium gun. The estimate was based on assumed output of six bombs per month since August, 1945. He also estimated that eight bombs were available at that time, plus the two dropped on Japan. General Leslie Groves, Army head of the Manhattan Project, refused comment.

The President stated that the 48 Estonian refugees—originally reported as 18 in number—would be allowed to stay in the country and not be deported as originally indicated. They had fled Estonia at the time of German occupation and taken up residence in Sweden, from which they had sailed to America, not wanting to return to Estonia under Soviet occupation.

The White House stated that OPA had its full backing in trying to maintain rent controls.

In Chicago, Henry Wallace urged the election of progressive Democratic candidates on Tuesday. Senator Claude Pepper asserted that Republicans were out to end price control and bring on inflation. CIO president Philip Murray stated that a Republican reactionary victory would bring about the greatest assault on labor rights in the country's history.

A report out of Trieste which claimed that Albanian shore batteries had fired on a British light cruiser was found to be untrue.

Burke Davis concludes his six-part series on the separate City and County Governments costing taxpayers more in the aggregate to maintain because of overlapping services and unnecesary duplication of personnel. He cites several coterminous city-county governments within the country which operated efficiently, extending from San Francisco to Norfolk. None had returned to the divided form of government once consolidated. Some North Carolina counties, such as Forsyth and Durham, had tackled the problem in piecemeal form by consolidating tax departments or health departments. Mecklenburg and Charlotte now had the opportunity to undertake the consolidation all at once.

In Victoria, B.C., a wire-haired terrier was left an income by its master of $1,000 per year, plus $75 per month upkeep. The dog's nurse was to receive $5,000 under the will. The owner's house would not be sold as long as the dog would live. The owner had not yet died.

We hope that someone might put her out of her doggy misery soon, however, with such an obscene display of ostentatious filth as the one she put on in favor of her dog, leaving money to her little bitch, which might otherwise have benefited humanity in some charitable cause. We shall simply label her a stupid, heartless rich fool and leave it at that.

To put it in perspective, this idiot was giving more annually to her dog than a teacher received in annual salary in North Carolina at the time.

Put the damned dog up for adoption at your death, stupid.

On the editorial page, "Have the Democrats also Had Enough?" finds Samuel Grafton asking a "ridiculous question" when, earlier in the week, he wondered why, with The Wall Street Journal and other financial publications openly discussing the prospect of a spring recession, the candidates from both parties were sidestepping the issue. The editorial finds it silly, because the Democrats would not admit of hard times ahead as they would be held accountable for it; the Republicans simply had no cure to offer against a recession.

Each party might be secretly hoping the other would win control of the Congress as the party in control would likely receive the blame in 1948 should a recession occur in the ensuing year. Should they remain the minority party, the Republicans could continue to coalesce with the Southern Democrats to pass legislation without taking the blame.

Senator Wayne Morse of Oregon had urged voters to vote for his party to place the onus on its members to deliver results and not just criticize Democrats.

Effective control of the Congress was not at stake the following Tuesday, as the Southern Democrats who formed the coalition in the 79th Congress were re-elected in the primaries and would thus be elected from their respective states and districts. The only issue was whether in the other states, enough Republicans would be elected to form a majority under the aegis of the party, not merely as a coalition.

It suggests that a Republican victory would serve the best interests of both the country and both parties.

"Tit for Tat Diplomacy" examines the back and forth exchange which had come in response to V. M. Molotov's statement the previous Tuesday that Russia supported world disarmament. Former Senator Warren Austin, the U.N. Ambassador for the United States, had responded that the U.S. would support it only with adequate inspections to assure compliance. The Soviets were insisting on maintenance of the Security Council veto while the United States was expressing willingness to abolish it.

These forms of diplomacy were unnerving in the face of the real issue, establishing the peace on a permanent basis. Although historians were finding it improbable that, even with adequate inspection, a system of disarmament could be successfully established and maintained, failing to allow for the possibility of it being openly discussed and negotiated at the U.N. would frustrate any attempt to try to effect such a system—the only way ultimately to prevent an arms race with the atomic bomb, at present held only by the West.

Thus, regardless of any bluster by the Russians, the main focus, it asserts, ought be on effecting peace and not exchanging dialectic salvos.

"The Matter of Consolidation" discusses the series, concluding this date, which had been presented by Burke Davis during the week on the separate City and County Governments, their various functions and the waste in duplicated services which resulted. The conclusion had been that while consolidation was needed, it was unlikely in the near future.

Private citizens had to exert pressure to bring the desired end of consolidation into being. Meanwhile, despite consolidation's obvious benefits in reducing government functionaries and saving taxes, such things as suspicion of rural dwellers for city folk, the tradition of split government in the community, suspicions of too much government arising out of consolidation, and the challenge to the ensconced power structure in each entity, all, for the moment, prevented consolidation from becoming a reality.

A piece from the Asheville Citizen, "New Yorkers and the Man", states that in New York's gubernatorial race between incumbent Thomas Dewey and Senator James Mead, the subject of Senator Theodore Bilbo of Mississippi had strangely cropped up from both sides. Senator Mead blamed Governor Dewey for "Bilboism", while Governor Dewey tried to tar Senator Mead with the Bilbo brush for being of the same party.

It finds it likely that Senator Bilbo, the next time he would run, could win votes by claiming that his steadfastness to his home state had produced such reaction by Northerners.

He would be dead in a year and so it no longer mattered.

Perhaps, too much stress was being placed on individual exponents of racism, Southern politicians such as Mr. Bilbo and Representative John Rankin, also of Mississippi, with that emphasis shifting the responsibility for the complex onto the politicians who merely gave voice to the frustrations, poverty and a cycle of generational ignorance which kept people in poverty, which produced racism. Education, in itself, presents no panacea for racism as its antecedent family tradition can be maintained regardless of education, and maintained for the very purpose manifested by Mr. Bilbo and Mr. Rankin, both of whom were well-educated, that is to be a captain within the complex, steering the omnipresent need in the uneducated for a feeling of superiority to someone toward a political force gravitating around the central catch-phrase "white superiority". Education does, however, present a means by which the tools may be accumulated to reach another end than to stultify progress out of fear of the future and change to that thought immutable in the human condition, the idea that slavery of one sort or another is necessary for the production of necessities to be realized in any society.

The thought was that getting rid of the flashpoint, the Bilbo or Rankin, would extinguish the breath of life to the racist complex. That obviously did not occur. For every Bilbo who died, there arose, as a multi-headed Hydra, a Patterson or Wallace in the neighboring state to take up the fallen mantle of the conquering white hero, even if, little by little, such voices of progress and reason, as, for instance, editor Hodding Carter in Mississippi, or, in the political realm, Governor Ellis Arnall of Georgia, were able to chip away gradually at the complex by convincing the intended objects of the political rhetoric that they were merely being used by husksters to achieve private power fiefdoms, that the path to relative economic freedom and security lay in cooperation across racial and cultural lines, not in a divide-and-conquer competitive mentality motivating the racist rhetoric, that the path to the future and progress lay in better education, meaning ultimately the need to integrate schools, in the process, theoretically, aiding in the integration of the community at large over time and generations, to eradicate the superstitions, the myths, which had for so long beset both sides of the racial divide, quite as much so as the xenophobic urges characterizing the usual concomitant to racism in that era, virulent opposition to anything foreign, especially Russian, Communism becoming the antithetical flashpoint to the racist, perceived as accompanying integration, unionism, and anything smacking of socialism, all, in sum, associated with "liberalism", thus a complex spreading its appeal, especially by the mid-1960's, to the working classes of other regions of the country as well, especially the industrial North and central Midwest, coalescing ultimately in "conservatism".

The root of all the evil was not Theodore Bilbo or John Rankin. Again, sometimes it is better to know where the snakes are than to seek to eradicate them and thereby drive the complex underground, out of sight, out of mind, purged, believing naively then the garden to be cleansed of all threat to its well-being, the real enemy, nevertheless, persisting. For it is ignorance and poverty and the cycle it fosters which are the hallmarks of the poison fruit, the need to experience something before understanding it to be inhospitable to life, not only life individually or in the family unit but within the broader society, the inability, for want of understanding, to imagine in advance of the experience the probable consequences of the behavior pattern to the society and ultimately to the individual.

The captains who exploit it, in any land and in any time, whether political or industrial and corporate, are merely exploiters and perpetuators of conditions which liberals seek to eradicate, those conditions being the real enemy, rather than individuals.

For to make the Bilbo or Rankin, the Wallace or Maddox, more than historical exemplars for a typology, but rather the actual incarnation of the Devil on one side, made also FDR, the Kennedys or Dr. King the Devil on the other, the flashpoints for coalescing the perception of need for elimination of individuals, the "if only they were dead" ideal, to achieve the reactionary's dream of white superiority, of nationalistic superiority, of conquering all enemies at once on the High Hill overlooking the battle park, one which likewise has never come to be as a result of false emphasis on a few individuals as the problem.

Stultifying open and vigorous debate by elimination of the troublesome voices on either side who generate the debate, no matter how strident and caustic, no matter how genteel and poetic, leads only to fascism and ignorance, and the start of the decadent cycle anew.

Drew Pearson again tells of Fred Danner of Akron, Ohio, running for Congress while not having paid his taxes in the years 1939 to 1941, inclusive, until he had won the Republican primary in 1946. He adds that Mr. Danner's printing company had a contract with the Government to print 2.3 million dollars worth of blank tax forms, and had a 1.5 million dollar contract with the Treasury to print an educational brochure for schoolchildren.

He had received several hundred dollars in supposed campaign contributions from named individuals—including Fred Johnson, who, after losing his arm in Korea, would kill Helen Kimble in 1963 and cause Lt. Philip Gerard to expend police resources out of Indiana for four years, all before the American tv viewing audience every Tuesday night at 10:00 p.m., hunting down Dr. Kimble despite his innocence—each of whom either were drawing unemployment or did not even vote for Mr. Danner in the primary. Mr. Pearson suggests that these "donors" were covering other unnamed donors.

He adds that he had nothing against Mr. Danner and would investigate all Congressional candidates if he had the time and resources. He points him out only as an example, to inform the electorate of Ohio.

He next addresses the reasons for his focus on the money being contributed to the GOP by Joseph Pew of the Sun Oil Co. in Pennsylvania. Some had asked why he did not give more stress to the money contributed by the CIO PAC to the Democrats, to which he responds that labor began making contributions in response to wealthy contributors such as Mr. Pew, the Rockefellers and Mellons. It was difficult to trace the family contributions and so he felt obligated as a public service to do so.

When he had traced down family contributions in 1940, he found that the DuPont family had contributed over $186,000 when the Hatch Act forbade any individual contribution over $5,000. The DuPonts had avoided the law by simply spreading the contributions within the family.

Sun Oil had contributed $108,000. The Alfred P. Smith family of G.M. had ponied up $36,000. The Widener family of Philadelphia had contributed $25,000. The Queeny family of St. Louis, which operated Monsanto, gave $43,000, and the Pitcairns of Pennsylvania, manufacturers of helicopters, provided $29,000. In all, ten families provided a million dollars to Republican coffers.

He asks the reader to decide whether that was better than having 20 million workers contributing $1 each through the CIO PAC, contributions which were recorded and not camouflaged under a mass of relatives and in-laws.

Marquis Childs, in St. Louis to look at the election, tells of Boss Tom Pendergast, just twelve years earlier, having sent his curried protege, Harry Truman, to the Senate. Mr. Truman had been behind in the polls and appeared headed for defeat because St. Louis and large majorities elsewhere were against him. But the Pendergast machine saved the day, rolling up large Truman majorities in Kansas City, offsetting the vote against him elsewhere. At the time, the influence of bosses was part of the American system of politics and no one thought much or cared about the consequences. But now, says Mr. Childs, it was realized that they were far-reaching.

Yet, the two Senatorial candidates in Missouri still inspired in the electorate the same casual indifference to the influence of political bosses on their votes. The incumbent was Senator Frank Briggs, a small-town editor from Macon, a regular Democrat, serving his party faithfully. He had served in the Missouri State Senate as a pawn to the utility interests, but no one ever accused him of accepting bribes. After Senator Truman became Vice-President in 1945, Mr. Briggs was appointed to fulfill his term. Since then, Senator Briggs had voted exclusively for the New Deal, voting as President Truman wanted.

The Republican candidate, James Kem, was a corporate lawyer, described by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch as one of the most reactionary Republicans that Missouri had produced in a long time. He denounced New Deal bureaucracy. He primarily sought the seat as a personal crowning achievement, having made his fortune.

Mr. Childs suggests that President Truman was more honest, conscientious and dedicated than the nation deserved from its indifferent attitude to the type of political machinations which got him into office initially.

Warren Harding had also been an accident of history, and he thinks that one day the country might suffer such an accidental candidate who would sweep away the things prized most in the American system.

Samuel Grafton finds the delegates to the U.N. General Assembly not toiling at world diplomacy but rather playing to the world audience while they had their attention. Such, he says, was the basis for the statement of V. M. Molotov the previous Tuesday, asking for international control of atomic energy. The delegates were not interacting to bring about peace, but staging a performance which could have been as easily presented in the press or on radio.

He thinks it might have been better to wait a couple of years before convening the Assembly, as public pressure then would have been exerted to use diplomacy to settle differences. Instead, the forum was simply being used to demonstrate that the delegates were staying busy, while little work was really being done.

The Assembly needed a meeting between President Truman, Prime Minister Attlee, and Prime Minister Stalin to make it work. The present meeting merely time-compressed what was ordinarily taking place in speeches interspersed by weeks across the world stage.

The General Assembly, he finds, was "doomed, like a mirror, to reflect the state of the world, whatever it is." If agreement prevailed, it would improve on it; if disagreement, it would accentuate it. It could not effect change in the basic relations of the nations. To believe otherwise was to become the victim of a "parliamentary illusion" when the Assembly did not operate as a parliament, merely as a body able to recommend action, but ultimately governed by the Security Council where power primarily was vested in the Big Five.

He concludes that, while the Assembly might find power in the future, it was still struggling for its identity. The Assembly could not be expected to construct the peace, and yet could be eviscerated in its potential power by failing to do so.

"We are entitled to turn to our leaders and ask that they make the peace, and save the Assembly, and the other world dreams of only a year ago."

A letter seeks "truth", finds it not conducive to national unity to have either "Northern demagogues" or "Southern pecksniffs", thinks the Northerners appealed to the black vote to create dissension in the South, that these outside agitators then enabled the pecksniffians, their smiling-good friends in fact, to thrive, that "perfect equilibrium of opinion is very difficult in a country where two races live in contact, the one superior in numbers and intellectual and material strength, the other inferior also in experience and knowledge, and where also the chasm of section is used by artful men to contaminate opinion."

One would only need look again at that film of the shootings in Greensboro in 1979 to jar any illusion loose that this writer was anything more than a pompous ass utilizing his Thesaurus to say nothing.

A letter writer finds the Supreme Court's sidestepping of the issue of the county-unit voting system in Georgia as being within the province of the State to determine, regardless of its inherent unfairness to the heavily populated counties, diluting, for instance, each of Atlanta's individual votes vis-a-vis that of the smallest county by 106 to 1, to be condoning the sort of racism for which Governor-nominate Eugene Talmadge stood, alongside the similar principles of Senator Bilbo, both of whom she brands "traitors to the Constitution".

She thinks it therefore dismissive of the Court not to appear to care whether the Constitution was followed or not.

While well-meaning, she misinterprets the decision, which left in place the Court of Appeals opinion, founded, insofar as the challenge brought regarding the Helen Mankin Congressional race, on Article I, Section 4 of the Constitution, which leaves to the State Legislatures, subject to alteration by Congress, the time, place, and manner of election of members of Congress, both Senators and House members. The challenge, as to both the gubernatorial election and the Congressional election, was primarily pursuant to the 14th Amendment, as denying equal protection of the laws to the voters of the more populous counties in relation to the less populous, and the 15th Amendment, as denying effectively the full benefit of the franchise to the more populous county residents. The lower court had found that, as to the Congressional race, the time, place, and manner of election had to be determined by the State Legislature or the Congress, and the Federal Courts lacked jurisdiction to resolve the issue. As to the gubernatorial race, it had also found no jurisdiction to intervene, again deferring to the State Legislature. The fact that the election had already taken place was also a factor, rendering moot the challenge.

The Supreme Court majority, not issuing an opinion, may have simply also found the case to be moot.

Thus, the letter writer's energies should have been then directed at the Congress to pass a law which would prevent such inequities, lacking any ability directly to impact the Georgia Legislature. Or, she should have urged Georgia office seekers to contest the statute prior to an election.

A 1963 case out of Georgia, Gray v. Sanders, 372 U.S. 368, decided 8 to 1 by the Supreme Court, following its "one man-one vote" rule established in Baker v. Carr the previous year regarding gerrymandered redistricting for the Tennessee State Legislature, finally struck down the Georgia county-unit statute as unconstitutional in practice, violative of equal protection under the 14th Amendment.

The decision in this case, delivered by Justice William O. Douglas, took a different stance on mootness from that of the lower court in Cook v. Fortson in 1946. Even though the Legislature had determined to hold the 1962 election on a popular vote basis, the offending county-unit vote statute remained on the books and so, according to the Court, stood as a threat in future elections, rendering the case not moot, an entirely sensible approach to mootness. Had that standard been utilized in Fortson, no mootness issue could have arisen. In Sanders, however, the case was brought and the injunction issued in the lower court prior to the election.

Justice John Harlan filed the lone dissent.

Despite the case, the rural counties of Georgia would opt in 1966 to follow their own secret recipe and elect a fried chicken king to be the next Governor.

Fifty years ago, seventeen years hence from this date, incidentally, the assassinations of President Ngo Diem and his brother Ngo Nhu would take place in a staged military coup in South Vietnam, November 2, 1963.

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