The Charlotte News

Wednesday, November 16, 1949


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that Federal chief mediator Cyrus Ching told Presidential aide John R. Steelman that further mediation in the coal dispute was useless, that it might even retard negotiations, and so turned the matter over to the White House for action, either to appoint a fact-finding board or to invoke Taft-Hartley and seek an injunction to prevent resumption of the coal strike on December 1. The White House appeared disposed to provide John L. Lewis the remainder of the week to accept a fact-finding board.

The President launched the public housing program by approving loans totaling over 20 million dollars to 108 cities in 27 states for the planning of low-rent housing for a half million persons, to be built during the ensuing two-year period.

The New York Times reported that despite being fired upon by a Chinese Nationalist warship, an unarmed American merchant vessel off Shanghai was proceeding as if nothing unusual had happened. The ship's hull had been hit by gunfire at several points, but no one had been hurt. The State Department sent a formal protest of the action.

In Frankfurt, West Germany, Robert M. Hanes of Winston-Salem was appointed to be chief of the ERP mission for West Germany and a member of the cabinet of civilian American High Commissioner of West Germany, John J. McCloy.

An Air Force B-29 bomber was missing during a flight from Riverside, California, to Bermuda, with 20 aboard. It was believed to have crashed into the ocean off Bermuda. The plane's eventual destination had been Britain.

In Los Angeles, an international manhunt had been launched to locate a 66-year old retired banker wanted for questioning in the slaying of the six-year old girl whose mutilated body had been found the previous day in the backyard of the neighboring home of the banker, at large in a child molestation case. He was the prime suspect in the murder. (The report the previous day that he was a "baker" was apparently either a misunderstood report or a misprint. That report indicated not that he was "at large" in a prior case but that he had been questioned in connection with it and released.)

The executive director of the Miss America Pageant, Lenora Slaughter, was visiting Charlotte to confer with officials of the Carolinas Christmas Festival and talk to officials of the Jaycees, as the latter were the best sponsoring organization for state beauty pageants.

Emery Wister of the News tells of the arrival in Charlotte of actress Audrey Totter, present for the Christmas Festival. She said that she never had been a blonde and had to bleach her hair for the movies. She was looking forward to returning home to Joliet, Ill., for Thanksgiving, the first she would spend at her home in eight years.

A four-mile Christmas parade, expected to be attended by 400,000 people, was scheduled for this date as the main event in the third annual Festival. In addition to Ms. Totter, Ted Malone, roving reporter, and Fulton Lewis, Jr., news commentator, were on hand for the celebration. Queen Christmas would be crowned at the Coronation Ball after the parade.

Santa Claus would arrive in Charlotte aboard an Eastern Air Lines plane at 5:14 p.m. this date, on a flight from the North Pole. He would be in the parade by 6:00.

You can't fool us. It's too early for Santa Claus. That's a fake.

On the editorial page, "N. C. School Picture" tells of Dr. Clyde Erwin, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, in a recent talk in Raleigh, having stated his optimistic hope that in addition to the 50 million dollars in the State school building fund, the counties would appropriate another 50 million to modernize the school physical plants across the state.

He omitted from his talk that which he had stressed in the past, the State's commitment to providing a greater proportion of funds to black schools to remedy past inequities and bring them up to the standards of white schools. But, the piece suggests, while that effort was fine, the real emphasis should be in the local communities, which actually determined the distribution of funds for school buildings.

"Ethics vs. the Law" discusses the case of the Lorain (Ohio) Journal which refused advertising from businesses which also advertised in a competing Sunday newspaper and on a local radio station, such that the Government was seeking to have the practice determined as an antitrust violation and an injunction issued to stop it.

The American Newspaper Publishers' Association had come to the defense of the Journal because of freedom of press issues, not, per se, the monopolistic practices of the newspaper, which no one condoned. The piece agrees with this stance.

"Educational Ingredient" remarks that while the suggestion by some that state-supported universities be limited to in-state students was understandable, it was also short-sighted, as it neglected the factor of inducing provincialism with a pool of only in-state students. Currently, UNC admitted 78 percent of its student body from within the state and 22 percent from 44 other states and several foreign countries. The piece regards it as the proper mix.

"New Medical Discovery" tells of three doctors at Duke University having announced discovery of a drug, Banthine, which appeared to provide lasting relief from peptic ulcers. It was still not available to the public and might not be for some time, as it was difficult to produce in large quantities and had only been first used on human subjects six months earlier. It relates of how the drug worked, eliminating stomach acid.

A piece from the Memphis Commercial-Appeal, titled "Senator George on Taxes", finds Senator Walter George of Georgia to be a proponent of eliminating excise taxes on business to encourage increased production, and thus tax revenue, plus cutting of the budget to eliminate the deficit, rather than via the President's program of increasing taxes on the wealthy. The piece suggests that Senator George's plan had worked in the past.

Sure, until the Depression ruined all the trickle-down fun, you dumb, greedy Republican.

Harry C. Withers, writing in the Dallas News, tells of the Southern newspaper publishers being warned by the managing editor of the Washington Star, B. M. McKelway, that there was a trend toward state control of information. He believed that the President's criticism of the press would extend to assigning Government reporters to tell the public what the Government wanted them to know, an extension of the information provided Europe through the Voice of America.

He suggests that with a few exceptions, no newspaper in the country would deliberately print a lie or even mislead its readers intentionally.

He finds that the public shrugged off as exaggeration newspaper editorials with which they disagreed.

As previous attempts at censorship had failed, there appeared no need to worry, except that times had changed, as had the Government. There was a substantial sentiment in the country supporting the "welfare state", such that it would not be much of a leap to go from Federally-supported schools to Federally-supported newspapers.

He even goes on to talk about Mr. McKelway's warning anent the state takeover of the newspapers by the dictatorship of Juan Peron in Argentina, and concludes by asking whether the United States was headed down the same path.

Oh, please, enough of your stupid, paranoid, conservative lies. We have had state-supported schools since 1793. We have never had state-supported newspapers. Get thee back to Dealey Plaza and shut up.

You belong at Fox News.

By the way, if that is where you get your information, you are, by definition, as Dumb as a Fencepost, a Picket Fencepost.

Drew Pearson tells of the departure of Julius Krug as Secretary of Interior leaving behind two morals, that it was not good for a man in public life to be publicized with "Hollywood girlies" and that the press could not criticize a member of the Truman Cabinet if they wanted him to resign. When the press, three years earlier, had made something out of the Hollywood parties thrown by Johnny Meyers, at which Mr. Krug was present, the President had stuck by him. But since that time, relations with the President had deteriorated and Mr. Krug had become involved in litigation regarding a $750,000 loan which he took out to finance the purchase of a textile mill in Tennessee. But the press remained quiet about it all for fear of drawing the President to his defense, and so he resigned.

Mr. Pearson suggests that the tragedy was that throughout most of his career, Mr. Krug was a fine public servant, starting at the TVA and becoming the youngest Secretary of Interior in history at age 36. And there appeared nothing wrong with his loan, but his business interests had taken him away from his Government job, sometimes five days per week.

Marquis Childs, in Frankfurt, tells of the peasant economy among the farmers underlying the highly developed technological and industrial side to Germany.

Democratization, decartelization and de-Nazification appeared no longer applicable in the stage of occupation extant in 1949. The allied position had become more of a redoubt in the midst of an increasingly resentful populace than an occupation. Americans and Germans were beginning to become hopeless for emergence of a truly democratic republic, finding it an American failure.

But the view, he finds, was too gloomy, for if Germany could be integrated within Western Europe, the rising tide of nationalism might yet be stemmed.

One observer, who had been around throughout the occupation, told Mr. Childs that the major problem had been the perception by Americans from the outset that all Germans were bad because they were Germans, ignoring the fact that many Germans had continued to believe in democracy throughout the duration of the Third Reich.

Now, everything was again black and white for Americans, with any German declaring that he was against Russia being considered a good German.

Mr. Childs finds the observer's analysis cogent and that too few Americans had shown the sort of political understanding necessary for dealing with Germany in defeat. But to pull back from the situation would risk defeat in Germany and throughout Western Europe.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop tell of the American Communist Party being on the way to extinction, no longer worthy of attention. Even at its height, it never had a mass following. Yet, its presence within the labor movement and within the intellectual community, as during the campaign in 1948 of Henry Wallace, had given it political significance. Both of those positions of influence, however, were melting away.

Tito had replaced Stalin as a left-wing hero and the influence of Henry Wallace after the 1948 campaign had become a practical nullity. In England and France, the Communist Party also had decreased in its influence. The French and Italian parties were split asunder between pro-Soviet and independent factions. Many former Wallace supporters had gone to Belgrade to see Titoism up close.

The Communists had also suffered major defeats within the labor movement. Two years earlier, they had appeared to comprise about half of CIO. But with the purges taking place since, they would be lucky to hold on to a few small unions such as the fur workers.

The Alsops conclude that the only thing which would renew the Communists' political influence in the country would be to make martyrs of them and, in so doing, compromise the basic principles of civil liberties.

Enter Senator Joseph McCarthy, come the following year.

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