Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that the House Ways &
Means Committee approved, by a vote of 15 to 9, the Knutson tax cut
of 6.3 billion dollars, raising personal exemptions from $500 to
$600, extending community property principles to all states, and
giving graduated cuts from 10 to 30 percent from the higher to lower
brackets. The vote in the House was expected the following Monday.
The President's $40 individual and dependent credit plan, to be
financed by a 3.2 billion dollar increase in corporate taxes, was
defeated 19 to 5, including four Democrats in opposition.
Tension was alleviated in world markets after Britain pledged to
defend the value of the pound, following the French franc devaluation the
previous day which had sent ripples through the monetary markets,
causing a run on gold.
The President demoted Federal Reserve chairman Marriner Eccles to
vice-chairman and appointed a new member, Thomas McCabe, to the
Board to fill a vacancy. Mr. McCabe, upon Senate confirmation, would
be designated chairman. Mr. Eccles had occupied the position since
latter 1934. Senator Homer Capehart of Indiana speculated that the
move was the result of the failure of the Fed to initiate adequate
policies to curb inflation. Mr. Eccles had disagreed with Secretary
of the Treasury John W. Snyder on how to limit the expansion of bank
credit. Mr. Eccles had suggested to Congress that a special reserve
be created for the purpose. Secretary Snyder had never articulated
his counter-proposal or reason for opposition.
The President, acting in accord with Taft-Hartley, also created
an emergency board to investigate a wage dispute between the three
railroad operators unions and the railroads. The unions had called
for a strike to begin February 1. Taft-Hartley provided for a 30-day
cooling off period, during which the board would hold hearings and
make recommendations to the Government.
Secretary of Agriculture Clinton Anderson released the names of
additional commodities traders, including Ambassador to Argentina
James Bruce, Senator Elmer Thomas of Oklahoma, and Frank Pace, Jr.,
who recently had been appointed assistant budget director. The
Agriculture Department had suspended three of its employees for
investigation of commodities trading to determine whether it had
been accomplished via inside information. The activity was not
illegal but had been criticized by the President for contributing to
inflation and had become an object of Congressional investigation.
Harold Stassen toured New Hampshire seeking votes which had
previously been committed to General Eisenhower. While there, he
reported that Senator Taft of Ohio had suggested to him that it
would not be to the Ohio Senator's interest or that of the former
Minnesota Governor to enter the Ohio primary. He had no comment when
asked whether his standing in the Party might be cut off at the
knees were he to cast his lot in Ohio.
In Baltimore, retired Rear Admiral Yates Stirling, Jr., 75, died
of a heart ailment following a three-month illness. He served in the
Navy 48 years until 1936. He had advocated immediate American
intervention in the war in Europe at its outbreak in September,
1939. In 1936, he had written in favor of forming a coalition
against Russian Communism, presumably not including Germany, Japan,
In Columbia, S.C., a thousand persons gathered to hear an
inspirational address by the national president of the WCTU before a
temperance organization, after which it adopted a manifesto which
demanded county option across the state, establishment of a home for
alcoholics, prohibition of sale of wine and liquor to minors, jury
service for women, a secret ballot for general elections, a plea for
participation of all Christian citizens in the state elections, and
A former Army Air Forces lieutenant was held
without bail on a charge of treason for Nazi propaganda broadcasts
from Berlin under the name Martin Wiethaupt while a prisoner of war.
The Nazis, according to his father, had forced him at gunpoint to read 15 to 20 transcripts over the air. The father also
related that his son had claimed to have written six of the scripts,
with the intent of masking, within ostensible propaganda, reports
on the extent of bomb damage inflicted on Germany by the Allies.
Edward Scheidt of the FBI, formerly the head of the Charlotte FBI
office, told of the former soldier, while in India in October, 1944,
having obtained a ride aboard an Army airplane to Italy, where he
then stole an Army photo reconnaissance plane and flew into German
occupied territory. Following the German surrender, he returned to
Italy and joined the U.S. Fifth Army at Milan, where he was
subjected to court martial and returned to the U.S., convicted and
sentenced to 15 years in the stockade for being AWOL. But no charge
of treason had previously been brought against him.
The former soldier claimed that he had led the Nazis to think
that he had joined them because they had the guns.
HUAC chairman J. Parnell Thomas was in Margarita Hospital in
Balboa Heights in the Panama Canal Zone, recovering from his stomach
hemorrhage, incurred during a cruise to the Zone to investigate
rumors of subversive activities in and around the Canal. As
indicated, he would live until 1970, despite becoming a political
prisoner of the American Government for his leadership in
eradicating Commies from Hollywood and everywhere else of note,
imprisoned then by a Government controlled by the Illuminettis and
Shakespeareans. Viva JPT.
There is only one panacea for this pandemic: Quick Kick, with two out and the bags full of their stuffings, in the bottom quarter of the ninth, down a point, with ten seconds to the bell and the count reaching 9.6, after the goal-tender, behind the eight-ball, walked off the field to the bullpen in disgust.
In Raleigh, Agriculture Commissioner W. Kerr Scott stated to a
press conference that he would be a candidate for Governor in the
May 29 primary should enough of his friends approve such a move. He
said also that while some friends had recommended that he wait and
run for the Senate when Senator Clyde Hoey of Shelby would retire,
he thought it unpropitious advice for he was a resident of Alamance
County in the middle of the state, as would be one of the other
candidates for the 1948 race for the Senate, incumbent Senator
William B. Umstead or former Governor J. Melville Broughton,
occupying the other seat. Because tradition then had it in the state
that one Senator should hail from the Western section and the other
from the Eastern section, it would be a bad strategic move.
Of course, as we have indicated, Mr. Scott would win the May race
and become Governor in the one-party state. But he did not reckon
with the fact that by mid-1954, then Governor Umstead and Senator
Hoey would die in office, the former succeeded by Lieutenant
Governor Luther Hodges, the latter by Sam J. Ervin of the North
Carolina Supreme Court, appointed by Governor Umstead. Governor
Broughton would win the November, 1948 race over Senator Umstead,
who had acceded to the office, by virtue of appointment by Governor Gregg Cherry, on the death of Senator Josiah W.
Bailey in December, 1946. Senator Broughton would die after two
months into his Senate term in early 1949, with his successor, Frank
Porter Graham, president of UNC, appointed by Governor Scott, who
would die in 1958 following his election to the Senate in 1954,
defeating Alton Lennon, appointed in 1953 by Governor Umstead to
fulfill the term of deceased Senator Willis Smith, a Raleigh
attorney who would defeat, in a race-baiting campaign managed by
Jesse Helms, Senator Graham in the 1950 special election. Senator
Scott's successor would be B. Everett Jordan.
No further deaths in office have since plagued the state, save in
the lone instance of Senator John East, who committed suicide in
Whether Tecumseh was also responsible for this curse, in some
indirect manner, possibly through the Lumbee or Cherokee, has yet to
In any event, to keep that lineage firmly in mind keeps one young
and on one's toes.
In the Philippines, Iloilo on Panay was again rocked by three
aftershocks, bringing the total to 53 such tremors since Sunday's
major quake which had killed 27 persons on Panay and nearby islands.
Settle down there, Sweetie. You don't want to rock too much and
blow the whole thing in one fell swoop. There will be no more left
in the reservoir for the next time we dance.
Frank Morgan says: "Odd how a girl who looks like a dream
can give a man insomnia. Which brings me to the observation that
many a man who marries a dream wakes up in the middle of a
On the editorial page, "A Park Program for Charlotte"
tells of an expert proposing a short-range as well as a long-range
plan for the development of much needed recreational facilities in
Charlotte. It was estimated that an increase of .2 to .9 of a mill
in the current mill tax—meaning the thickness of the polythene tarp
used to wrap the proposed park when complete to keep its groundlings
from getting a tan on rainy days, dark, in the dumb-show seats, with bo-peapits drowning in the brown-bettycan—would be necessary over a
three-year period to initiate the program.
The piece advocates the plan outlined by the expert, Mr. Jones,
regional director of the National Recreation Association.
"Vandenberg Steps to the Fore" comments on Senator
Arthur Vandenberg having become the primary dark horse, according to
many Republican observers, for the 1948 nomination since General
Eisenhower had, without equivocation, finally removed his name from
consideration because he found it not conducive to proper ordination
of the executive authority over the military for a career military
officer, absent extraordinary circumstances, to run for the
presidency, as it might lead to choosing such officers for political
It believes that Harold Stassen, former Minnesota Governor, might
still emerge in the liberal category as a potential candidate, but
Senator Vandenberg, with his unqualified support for the Marshall
Plan, had the best chance of occupying that role.
It neglects the small factor that Senator Vandenberg had been
reported recently to have said, without equivocation, that he was
not a candidate and would not become so. He would remain true to his
It fills some editorial space, we suppose, as an interesting
hypothetical which never came to be. Would Senator Vandenberg have
been able to win the 1948 election by being more appealing to
independents than was Governor Dewey?
"Working in 1890 or 1948?" remarks on the President's
dismissal of GM president Charles E. Wilson as living in 1890 for
having advocated a 45-hour work week, without time-and-a-half for
overtime. The piece remarks that William Green, president of AFL,
had advocated the 45-hour week with retention of overtime, placing
him in 1880. It wants to see more evidence that any such extension
of the work week was for the purpose of increasing production and
not merely undermining the 1938 Wage and Hours Act, major provisions
of which were overtime pay and a limit of hours to 40 per week, to
assure that workers were not used up before their time.
The steel industry was already producing at maximum capacity and
the auto industry was only being limited by lack of steel. Thus,
increasing the length of the work week in each of those industries
would not increase production. While there was more argument for the
increased hours during a period of high employment than prior to the
war, it was yet not clear how the plan would increase production,
the stated goal.
A short piece from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, titled
"Through the Iron Curtain", to which might cleverly be
added "Darkly", remarks on the critics of ERP who had
argued that revived trade between Western and Eastern Europe was a
sine qua non for the success of the Plan. Former
Undersecretary of State Will Clayton had argued that ERP would
stimulate the necessary trade revival, regardless of the political
contention between the regions.
The piece notes that the prophecy was coming true, as trade
across the iron curtain amounted to 1.4 billion dollars per year, a
third of the prewar volume. The Marshall Plan would rebuild
industrial production to the point where trade could advance to full
prewar volume. The Plan was thus a salutary risk.
Sumner Welles, former Undersecretary of State until August, 1943,
discusses the violence taking place in Palestine since the decision
on November 29 by the U.N. to approve partition to establish a
Jewish state and an Arab state. He suggests that the situation posed an overlooked
danger to American security, that Russia might
intervene to protect its frontier. There was also a threat to the
moral authority of the U.N., as the Arab Higher Committee had
informed the U.N. that it would defy the partition plan with every
means within its power.
Newspapers in Syria and Lebanon openly boasted of the recent
invasion of Palestine by the troops trained in the countries. Egypt
had given two million dollars to arm Arab forces for the purpose.
Friendly governments of the Arab League were likewise participating
in the effort.
The Palestine Commission of the U.N., until presently, had done
nothing more effective than to discuss how local militias, formed
pursuant to the partition plan by both Jews and Arabs, could be
utilized. The Security Council, notwithstanding the aggression
committed in Palestine and its responsibilities to act under Article
39 of the Charter, had done nothing. That was so, despite there
being no issue of veto, as Russia had supported partition.
He places blame on the U.N. for its procrastination and on the
U.S. for failing, prior to adjournment of the General Assembly, to
assert leadership to press the need for an enforcement mechanism to
preserve the peace.
He recommends, as he had previously, formation of a police force
by the U.N., pursuant to Article 43, comprised of small contingents
from the regular military of five or more of the smaller nations. A
token force, he offers, should be sent to Jerusalem forthwith, with
more added commensurate with the British withdrawal. Otherwise, the whole of the
Near East might soon become "aflame in a devastating
Drew Pearson comments on former President Hoover having testified
to Congress the previous week, favoring a restrained version of the
Marshall Plan, limited to four billion dollars in appropriations and
lasting only one year, with no future commitment. The testimony had
highlighted an internal struggle within the Administration palace
guard regarding the wisdom of having brought Mr. Hoover into the
fold by sending him to Europe the previous year to render a report
to the President on the crisis, a report which found the crisis
somewhat magnified in other reports of the situation. But moreover,
the testimony had also brought into high relief the dissension
within the Republican Party between the isolationist wing of Senator
Taft and the interventionist wing of Senator Vandenberg.
Mr. Pearson points out that it was the provision of credits to
Europe and Latin America during the Twenties by President Coolidge
which had propped up those economies, and that it was the withdrawal
of those credits which had caused the economies abroad to collapse,
leading finally to the 1929 Crash and the Depression in America.
President Hoover had admitted as much in a speech of June 20, 1931,
when he declared a moratorium on European war and recovery debt payments.
The column then reviews some of the differences between the
present period and the period of the Twenties after World War I,
factors which could aid in avoidance of a repeat of that process.
The Marshall Plan included provision for careful supervision by
American experts of the spending. The money would not be authorized
until an agreement had been signed with each of the 16 recipient
nations to determine the peaceful use for which it would be spent,
to avoid the prospect of funneling the money into armaments.
Moreover, the Plan was designed to benefit Western Europe, not a
former enemy state, as in the Twenties, Germany. Then, the money had
been spent profligately on armaments and public recreational
facilities, without disclosure of the fact to the American public,
as revealed in subsequent Congressional investigations.
The major steel plants, which became the feeder for the Hitler war
machine, were built largely by American dollars from private
investment firms. The chief money-raiser had been James Forrestal,
presently Secretary of Defense. Private loans were also made to
Latin America and Europe, totaling 15 billion dollars, which in turn
bolstered U.S. export traffic, causing an artificial economic bubble
during the Twenties, the exports becoming for the most part gifts,
as the "loans" were never fully repaid.
The Marshall Plan envisioned a remedy for these problems by the
careful oversight of the spending. The return would not be in cash
but in engendering stability which would prevent another far more
costly war or build-up of a far more costly, unprecedented "peacetime" war machine to prevent
it. Self-interested businessmen would not be the overseers as in the
European relief program following World War I.
Joseph & Stewart Alsop examine the issue of whether the true
facts of ERP would be placed before the country in Congress or the
opponents allowed to have their way for lack of understanding of the
import of the Plan.
Presently, it was expected that delay would be the rule of the
day, with ERP being cut to the bone, down to about four billion
dollars for the first 15 months, from the 6.8 billion recommended by
the President. The only way to rescue it was for the country to
become energized in favor of the Plan as originally proposed. To
cause such an upsurge in public opinion, Secretary of State Marshall
would need to inform the country of the actual motives of the
The Government policy-makers were saying behind the scenes that
the ultimate reason for the Plan, as for all of the other foreign
aid since the war, was primarily to halt Soviet expansion, with its
secondary purpose being humanitarianism. Yet, the true motive had
never been publicly disclosed and discussed by the Administration
beyond mere hints. It would be necessary, Mr. Alsop opines, to move
Samuel Grafton comments on the Baruch proposal laid before the
Senate Foreign Relations Committee the previous week, attempting to
formulate a plan for establishing complementary effort at home in
support of full implementation of ERP abroad, necessitating, in his
view, a plan of inflation-control which included a moratorium on tax
cuts for two years and a four-year freeze of farm prices, insuring
the farmers the while that the frozen price would be supported by
the Government. Stabilization of currencies, he averred, would also
be a necessary part of ERP.
But in the midst of it all, the State Department released new
documents seized after the war from the German Foreign Office, which
showed the effort by Stalin to effect a separate peace with Hitler
in spring, 1940 on specified terms, control of the destiny of
Finland, control of the Dardanelles and thus the Middle East. The
calculated damage to Soviet-American relations by the revelation and
its broadcast into Eastern Europe via Voice of America channels
appeared to counter the policy to have Congress authorize a
formulation of ERP based on establishing the peace.
While the effort by Stalin was repulsive, the timing of the
revelation had opened up a can of worms, to which answer might be
made in defense of the Russian actions and gestures during the
period, prior to the mid-1941 Nazi invasion of Russia. But it was much
easier to engender bitterness toward Russia by such
simplistic formulations taken out of context than to place those
actions in context to establish a peaceful co-existence and mutual
understanding. And it was the latter which would lead to peace, the
former, tending toward war.