The Charlotte News

Friday, March 11, 1949


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that the test on the Senate filibuster by Southern Democrats, in opposition to a rule change which would permit cloture of debate on motions and resolutions by a two-thirds vote, would come late this date, as Majority Leader Senator Scott Lucas would seek a vote on the ruling made the previous night by Vice-President Alben Barkley that debate on the motion for the rule change was subject to cloture by a two-thirds vote. Senator Richard Russell of Georgia had challenged the ruling and asked for the vote of the membership, a simple majority of which was needed to overturn the Vice-President's decision. If the Vice-President's decision were to be upheld by the Senate vote, then it would require a two-thirds majority to stop the filibuster of the rule change, and a simple majority then for or against the change itself. The vote on Vice-President Barkley's decision was expected to be close.

There will be finger sandwiches and fruit punch in the hallway afterward.

Israel and Trans-Jordan signed a formal ceasefire this date, a necessary prelude to an armistice in Palestine between the two countries. It did not include a triangle in which Iraqi troops were stationed, awaiting advice from Iraq as to whether it would authorize Trans-Jordan to negotiate for it. Preliminary indications on that authorization were negative.

Secretary of the Army Kenneth Royall, in his annual report on the status of the Army, called the Soviet blockade of Berlin a "day to day threat to the peace of the world." He said that the U.S. would not relent in its resistance to the Soviet attempt to force it from Berlin.

The Russian employee of the U.N. Secretariat, accused of espionage, refused to enter a plea at his arraignment in Federal court in New York and refused counsel. The judge continued the matter so that counsel could be appointed.

According to Congressman Wright Patman of Texas, the Administration, in an effort to attract votes in the House for renewal of rent control, promised to eliminate rent ceilings in a hundred cities, contained within a list presented by Mr. Patman. No areas of North Carolina were on the list, though two counties of South Carolina were. There were 600 rent control areas in all across the country.

In Washington, the zoot-suited robber and his wounded accomplice, under arrest after being apprehended the previous day in a pawn shop a few blocks from the White House a day after allegedly robbing a Baltimore & Ohio train of $1,000, told of the robbery being a spur of the moment decision after the two got into an argument with the train steward regarding a drink and decided to rob him.

The State House approved Governor Kerr Scott's 200 million dollar bond issue for rural road paving and improvement, and imposition of an additional one-cent gasoline tax to help pay for it. The bills still had to be passed on a third reading the following day.

A man the previous night had identified Field Marshal Sir William Joseph Slim, chief of the British Imperial General Staff, as "Mr. X" for the week. Field Marshal Slim, who had retired from the British Army before his appointment, replaced Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery, who, the previous November, became chief of the Permanent Defense Organization of Western Europe—PDOWE being forerunner of the NAP.

The man who made the identification, thus collecting $40 from the mouths of starving children the following Christmas, said that he knew of only three British generals, matching the last of the clues presented Thursday, from his time in service in England during the war. He said that he was going to apply the winnings to a trip to the Orange Bowl in Miami the following New Year's Day.

Well, we hope you enjoy your little outing in Miami at the expense of crying children on Christmas Day, whom, for your smart-aleck greed, you will deprive of having any semblance of a Merry Christmas. Don't think a thing about it. Have fun watching football.

On the editorial page, "Asking for Too Much Power" finds that the proponents of the "Foundation Plan" for education, whereby funding would be borne by the State to the extent of 85 percent and the remainder borne by the counties and municipalities, to have compromised the program for better education in the state by seeking to ram through this Plan, which was so confusing that even local educators could not understand it. It advises therefore against such an all-or-nothing attitude by its proponents.

"Round One in Oleo Fight" finds that in the House Agriculture Committee, the latest lobbying effort by the dairy industry had resulted in a bill to eliminate the discriminatory tax on margarine, with the proviso, however, that no yellow-colored margarine could be sold in interstate commerce. The piece thinks this provision to present an annoyance to the average consumer, only interested in a spread cheaper than butter, and would result in backlash therefore to the dairy industry. It asserts that if housewives made their voices heard, the provision would likely go away in the final version of the bill.

"Lo, the Little Pretzel" tells of pretzel sales having gone up 50 percent between 1939 and 1947. The pretzel had originally come from Southern France, produced by devout monks, and was called the pretiola, meaning "small reward". Its form was meant to represent arms folded in prayer and it was presented to the small child who properly learned to fold arms accordingly.

It concludes that in modern times, however, the pretzel was often found beside an "unwise imbiber whose arms are folded, cradling his head."

Now, you have a topic of conversation next time you eat a pretzel with someone. But fold your arms and pray for safe consumption. Those pretiolas can be deadly.

Drew Pearson suggests that all conjecture regarding the reasons for the removal of V. M. Molotov as Soviet Foreign Minister and his replacement by Andrei Vishinsky was, because of the Kremlin's strict secrecy, mere speculation.

It appeared that the Kremlin was not going to accept the NATO agreement without response. The likely point of response would be Iran, as U.S. Ambassador to Iran John Wiley was warning the State Department.

When Vice-President Barkley had been a member of the House in 1921, he voted, along with the rest of the House membership, to censure Congressman Thomas L. Blanton of Texas for inserting a letter containing the term "s.o.b." into the Congressional Record. Mr. Blanton had defended himself by saying that the letter was from a third party and that it used the abbreviation. He nevertheless avoided expulsion from the House by only eight votes.

He points it out because the President had referred to Mr. Pearson as an "s.o.b." at a recent dinner for his criticism of the President's military aide, General Harry Vaughan, for the latter's receipt of a decoration from Argentine dictator Juan Peron. Many of the President's political allies and friends had been members of the House in 1921 at the time of the vote, including former Secretary of State James Byrnes.

Senator Kenneth Wherry of Nebraska had won re-election in the fall with the help of $25,000, $5,000 of which came from the Republican National Senatorial Campaign Fund, headed by a duPont henchman. The duPont family had contributed most of the money to the Fund.

James Marlow suggests that it was a feeble education in democracy merely to mouth the words that all men are created equal, without also facing the reality that in America not everyone enjoyed equal rights, either at the Founding or in 1949. Yet, it was amazing that the words could be written at all in the Declaration of Independence in 1776. He suggests that it was important for American educators to stress the historical roots behind the slogan to inculcate an understanding of the ideal, not just parroting of the words.

Communists had long ago abandoned personal freedom as an interference to a completely controlled society. Communism, he posits, would have been far less attractive to Americans who joined the party had they been properly taught the roots of the American ideal of freedom and equality.

DeWitt MacKenzie questions whether a reported prospective meeting of the Communist satellite nations and Russia, scheduled to occur in Hungary in mid-March, would be for the purpose of forming a military alliance to counter the North Atlantic Treaty, a draft of which had now been approved by the signatory nations, Britain, the U.S., France, the Benelux countries, Canada, and Norway. Russia had already formed mutual assistance treaties with the satellite nations and had formed the Economic Council of Mutual Aid to counter the Marshall Plan, a Council which included Poland, Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria, Rumania, and Hungary.

It was to be expected that the North Atlantic Treaty would spawn as a counter a military pact in Eastern Europe.

Marquis Childs tells of E. Burdzhalov writing in the Soviet magazine Bolshevik, with the imprimatur of Josef Stalin, that every Communist had to follow the doctrine laid down first by Marx and Engels and then by Lenin and Stalin to overthrow the landowners and bourgeoisie to establish the revolutionary leadership of the proletariat. He posited that in America and Britain, where Communism was not yet the way of the masses, such revolution could best be waged within the trade unions. The revolutionary class had to master all methods of combat and be ready to substitute one method for another to adapt to circumstances.

Mr. Childs concludes that this statement provided the marching orders for international Communism and was why the leaders of the American, Italian, and French Communist parties had each recently made statements of allegiance to the party goals, irrespective of the interests and borders of their own countries.

Samuel Grafton, no longer carried by The News, discusses the press and government speculation regarding the reasons for the replacement of V. M. Molotov with Andrei Vishinsky as Soviet Foreign Minister, with an eye toward the possibility that it did, indeed, presage a softer policy toward the United States. He wonders whether, in that event, the U.S. would know what to do, being prepared as it was for a tougher Soviet policy, but not a softer one.

After much discussion of the reasons for the change, the general conclusion appeared to be that it had no meaning, suggesting that the present course of American policy ought continue regardless of whether, in fact, the shift did convey meaning. Mr. Grafton finds that to be an overly rigid and dangerous course. Indeed, it ignored the goal of U.S. policy, to produce a softer Soviet response, suggestive of ignoring the success of U.S. policy, should it occur, for fear it might lead to weakening of U.S. policy. Such led to the circumlocution that the purpose of American policy was to perpetuate American policy.

James Reston of The New York Times had written that some officials in Washington considered the Molotov demotion, if it was one, to be antithetical to U.S. policy for the fact that his "indiscretions" and angering of Congress had led to the Marshall Plan and a harder U.S. doctrine toward Russia, that Mr. Molotov, therefore, had unintentionally assisted the rebuilding of Europe, a necessary action regardless of its ancillary benefit in aiding Western European resistance to Communism.

Such perception suggested that the American Government was serving policy rather than having policy serve it. It led to the inference that to the policy planners, a better world was an unfamiliar, even dangerous, concept. He concludes that he did not know whether the change meant a softening of Soviet policy, as the Soviet system produced "mechanical men" who carried out mechanical policy, but that it was not reasonable to become mechanical men in response.

The "Better English" answers is so obvious, they hardly bares mentioning: 1. "More friendly" should be "more friendlier"; 2. "Dijess"; 3. "Cellary"; 4. To be liquid, loco, and audacious all at once; 5. "Spirit".

A letter writer suggests that new State Senator Jack Blythe should be concentrating on saving taxpayer money rather than spending it, as with his recent proposal that the State expend $100,000 for an airplane for the Governor.

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