The Charlotte News

Saturday, May 7, 1949


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that the U.S., Britain, and France would hold preliminary discussions in Paris prior to the Big Four meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers on May 23 to discuss Germany. It was expected that the four foreign ministers would discard past problems and start from scratch in their discussions.

The British and Americans launched a new information dissemination campaign by radio via 61 transmitters operating simultaneously, broadcasting Russian transmissions toward Moscow, designed to break through the Russian jamming effort, utilizing 60 transmitters. The BBC announced that the operation had worked to surpass the jamming, which had begun in earnest on April 24. The Voice of America broadcasts had suffered interference since early 1948, but the interference had increased in recent months. The Americans operated 36 stations at different frequencies and the British operated 25, resulting in a quarter of the frequencies getting through without interference. The State Department stated that Moscow had not wanted the Russian people to hear the Western version of the agreement to lift the Berlin blockade.

In China, the Communists told of renewed military operations along the approaches to Tsingtao, 33 miles away from the location of the American base for the Western Pacific fleet. The area had not seen military activity in several months, since the Communists had cut off Tsingtao's land routes.

Meanwhile, reports stated that Communist troops were pushing against the outer defenses of Shanghai without success, some 25 to 50 miles away from the city at three different points.

In Seoul, Korean President Syngman Rhee said that the Communist menace in the country was caused by both American and Russian policies since the war, dividing by postwar agreement the country in half between American and Russian-controlled zones during its occupation. He said that South Korea did not propose to fight the Communists in the North or their Soviet masters, but would continue the effort to unite the country. He asked whether, in the event of attack, South Korea could rely on American aid. Only a small regiment of American troops remained in the country and plans for its withdrawal in a few months had been announced.

In Flint, Mich., a Chevrolet assembly line voted to go on strike, subject to international UAW approval, for speedup of the assembly line, the basis for the ongoing strike at the Ford River Rouge plant in Dearborn. A union spokesman said that he thought the Chevrolet strike could be averted with a settlement.

In Lubbock, Texas, and surrounding areas, four or five people were killed and scores marooned as a tornado struck.

In Chattanooga, Tenn., Sergeant Alvin York, World War I hero, had suffered a stroke, paralyzing the right side of his face and tongue. He would live until 1964.

In Charlotte, 122 pets were entered in the Humane Society's Pet Show, held in Independence Park. Dogs, cats, parrots, roosters, and a Shetland pony and its young colt were entered, the latter taking the prize for "most unusual" pet. The grand prize of a 1949 table model radio was won by "Powder Puff", a Samoyede dog. We hope that "Powder Puff" enjoys radio. "Judge", a talking parrot, won the grand prize for the bird category, and "Mittens", a cat which could walk on a leash, won in the cat category. The cat, or its mother, had been the subject of a feature story by Martha Azer London the previous year. A rooster named "Rooster" took second place in the bird group, even if not in the category of original names. A hen named "Annie" came in third.

You probably should not name your parrot "Judge", as it sounds subversive and may wind up subjecting you to investigation by HUAC at some point.

On the editorial page, "Safety Program Comes to Life" finds that Governor Kerr Scott, elected on the premise that he would destroy machine politics in the state, was busy building a formidable machine for himself. But one appointment, C. R. Tolar, as commander of the State Highway Patrol, was hard for anyone, even the Governor's strongest supporters, to understand.

Mr. Tolar had been arrested for speeding the previous week and tried to get the two officers to tear up the ticket on the ground of his new office. The officers refused and the case was heard in court, Mr. Tolar being ordered to pay $25 in court costs. To add to the problem, Mr. Tolar had no special qualification for the job, save that he had assisted in the Governor's campaign.

The Governor also appointed, as the assistant director of the Safety Division, the Young Democratic Club campaign director and State House calendar clerk for the recent session of the Legislature. He also lacked qualification for the job. He was the court jester for the Legislature, and during the recent session, had dressed as a fat woman, was escorted to the dais by another jester.

It concludes that the State safety program took enough of a hit when the mechanical inspection law was repealed by the Assembly without now taking more with these two appointments.

"Gen. Clay Leaves Berlin" tells of General Lucius Clay resigning his post as military occupation governor for the American zone of Germany, to be replaced by John J. McCloy on May 15 as the new civilian administrator. The pressure had become so great on General Clay during the blockade of Berlin that his close associates feared that he might crack up.

Some had questioned why the President accepted the resignation before the agreement was made to lift the blockade. There had been much criticism of General Clay for not pressing for decartelization of German industry as ordered by the President. And there was talk that he had not cooperated well with the Marshall Plan and civilian agencies.

Whether these were valid criticisms might never be known. As he left, Berlin was in a relatively peaceful state and had now ceased to be a prime trouble spot for East-West relations. General Clay had played a key role in maintaining the peace through a tense year and, it urges, the nation ought be grateful for his efforts, overshadowing his imperfections.

"Highways in Bad Shape" finds that the problems explained in the U.S. highway system in a piece on the page did not bode well for North Carolina, as the General Assembly had raised the maximum weight allowable for trucks on the roads of the state. The measure did provide for the Highway Commission to set limits for each road so that the heaviest trucks would only travel on the roads which could most easily accommodate them. It urges that the Commission get about the designation and that the Highway Patrol strictly enforce the weight limits to avoid undue wear and tear on the road system.

A piece from the St. Louis Star-Times, titled "Blow to 'Fair Trade'", tells of the Florida Supreme Court having invalidated the state's "fair trade" law, which permitted a manufacturer to set a minimum price on trademarked goods and force retailers to abide by it. The Court ruled that such a practice created an illegal monopoly and discouraged competition. In 45 of the 48 states, similar laws had been enacted and thus the trend was toward fixing prices. Missouri was one of the three states without such a law.

Such fixed prices meant that consumers paid more, and the piece commends the Missouri Legislature for bucking the trend.

A piece from the Baltimore Evening Sun, as referenced above, looks at the state of the nation's highways by way of the views of the director of the Federal Public Roads Administration, Thomas MacDonald, finds that heavy trucks did a lot of damage to roadways, both those of macadam and concrete. The outer lanes used by trucks suffered more than the inner lanes. In areas where trucks carried loads to a destination and returned empty, the side of the road for the loaded trip suffered the greater wear.

The Maryland Legislature had passed a law to raise the weight limits on the roads but the Governor had not determined yet whether to sign it or veto it.

Mr. MacDonald counseled against gradual raising of the weight limits as new roads were planned on the basis of existing limits, and to raise them would cause a considerable waste of money in additional maintenance and reconstruction.

Drew Pearson, in recognition of Mother's Day, addresses a letter to his daughter in Los Angeles, in which he recalls his deceased mother, especially the things he wanted to do with her while she was alive but never had the opportunity, such as taking trips with her, reading books she wanted him to read or seeing plays she wanted him to see.

After his father died in San Francisco, he went with his mother on a trip to Ventura where he had to speak. She had enjoyed the trip immensely even though they were together only for a day. He regrets that there were many other days he could have spent with her but did not.

He says that it was better that his mother died before President Truman had called him an "s.o.b.", as the phrase reflected upon her—not the President's intent, we are certain. He finds it ironic that his mother and the President's deceased mother were very similar people, pioneer women from the Midwest, Mr. Pearson's mother having come from Kansas.

His mother used to spank him with the flat side of the hairbrush which, he says, never hurt much, as she could not hurt anyone.

She had died in 1942. He believes that the coming of the war which she had prayed so hard against may have been too much for her. He tells his daughter that he still missed his mother.

Joseph Alsop predicts that the Council of Foreign Ministers meeting of the Big Four in Paris on May 23 would likely result in stalemate. The West would likely accept the German demand that all four occupation armies evacuate Germany because the Western anti-Communists were stronger and better trained for the task of governance than the East German police, comprised mainly of Russian war prisoners who sought escape from Russian internment camps. The Eastern zone's economy was in bad condition, one of the motivating factors for ending the blockade.

The Soviet position in Eastern Europe would become much more difficult with a reunited Germany, thus making that condition also appealing to the West. But the presence of American forces in Germany was one of the guarantees to Western Europe and such a move would require scrapping the plans for the West German government, something which the French would resist violently. The issue of the Ruhr would also resurface, as the Russians wanted to share in the industrial region.

The West would likely state to the Russians that they were free to join the West German government whenever the East Germans would be allowed to obey the rules. The issues of the Marshall Plan and the fate of the industries which the Russians had seized in East Germany would also arise at the meeting.

Marquis Childs also examines the aftermath of the lifting of the blockade and its portents. The Russians would likely seek a unified Germany in which the Communist Party could play the dominant role. The airlift would remain partially in place to deter resurrecting the blockade, which had been more costly for the Russians than for the West.

The retirement of military occupation governor General Lucius Clay would mean a change in German policy, especially the economic aspect. General Clay had been at odds with ERP officials. He had been criticized for failing to carry out decartelization of German industries as sought by the President.

John J. McCloy, president of the World Bank, would likely become the new civilian administrator of the U.S. zone. Mr. McCloy was a friend to ERP administrator Paul Hoffman and so would work well with him. Averell Harriman would also be a member of the team and had broad experience in dealing with East-West relations, which would serve well.

Some Democrats and some influential Republicans wanted Mr. Hoffman out of the way so that he would not be in a position to attract support for the GOP presidential nomination in 1952.

The job the trio faced was one of the toughest to be imagined, but they would have the opportunity to contribute to a stable and democratic Europe.

A letter writer suggests that outgoing Mayor Herbert Baxter allow himself to be photographed presenting the keys to the city to Mayor-elect Victor Shaw.

In conclusion of National Mental Health Week for 1949, we offer that in dealing with the referenced excerpts from the works of Dr. Sigmund Freud presented during the week, as he related generally of the probable subconscious meaning of symbols in dreams, though always careful to point out that the individual's personal experiential background and the particular dream had to be examined in context before any rational hypothesis could be postulated on the subject as a generally applicable interpretation, we came across this stupid quote which some gun-nut idiot attributed to Dr. Freud: "'A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity.' —Sigmund Freud, General Introduction to Psychoanalysis (1952)". Or, as the apparent putative origin of the claimed attribution actually stated, in a gun-nut's paper published in 1990 for a right-wing "think tank" promoting non-thought: "...Freud associates retarded sexual and emotional development not with gun ownership, but with fear and loathing of weapons."

First, without getting into the perverted psychology of the lying gun-nut who apparently started the nonsense, the actual reference, as contained in a footnote in the paper in question—albeit not bothering, for obvious reasons, to quote the passage—is to Dreams in Folklore, written by Dr. Freud in 1911 with David Oppenheim and published posthumously in 1958, at p. 33 (roughly equivalent to p. 9 in the cited version): "The representation of the penis as a weapon, cutting knife, dagger etc., is familiar to us from the anxiety dreams of abstinent women in particular and also lies at the root of numerous phobias in neurotic people." That statement is obviously a far cry from the paraphrase regarding a "fear and loathing of weapons" being supposedly associated with "retarded sexual and emotional development", the actual quote referencing instead the symbolic representation of the penis as a weapon in a dream being found to be prevalent in sexually abstinent women and in persons with phobias which are the product of neuroses. In other words, such persons were most likely, found Freud and Oppenheim, to have dreams in which sharp weapons appeared representing, in the context of their dreams, the penis.

To attribute to Dr. Freud such a bizarre notion as that contained within the self-servingly inaccurate paraphrase is to misunderstand not just the above quote but, moreover, his entire work, as well the subject of human psychology generally. For any idiot ought to know that Dr. Freud, or, for that matter, any reputable psychiatrist or psychologist, would never make such a generalized statement in absolute terms regarding causality of a particular phobia, save in the context of such logically universal primordial fears as, for instance, the fear of death, that is as manifested, whether by innate or learned response, in the basic survival instinct within the rational human being. The claimed association, or anything vaguely resembling it, simply does not exist within the work from which the attribution purports that it derives, nor anywhere else within the oeuvre of Dr. Freud, as anyone who vaguely understands the subject matter ought readily discern.

Further demonstrating the inherent unreliability of this 1990 paper, the author also proclaimed, in childishly vindictive response to a contrary study of another professor by way of attempting, expressly, to project onto the contrarian such firearm fear born of retarded emotional development, that another study from 1988, which in turn had cited an earlier work of the author of the 1990 paper, had "found" that annual defensive uses of handguns to ward off crime by other persons numbered 645,000 against 581,000 crimes occurring annually involving handguns. The author then merely gave a footnote to the 1988 source for this supposed "finding". It turns out that the source based that finding of an estimated 645,000 defensive uses of handguns on a poll taken in 1981 of 1,228 registered voters, thus over 18, asking whether in the past five years they had used a handgun, whether or not fired, to ward off either crime by another person or an attack by an animal. The result showed that six percent of respondents said that they had done so, two percent to ward off an attack by an animal, three percent to prevent a crime by a person, and one percent to prevent both—thus only 49 respondents answering affirmatively that they had used handguns for defensive use to stop crime. The sourced author then took this single poll, extrapolated the results to the general population of 80.6 million households in the country, took four percent of that number for uses of handguns to prevent crimes by persons, divided by five for the number of years covered, and reported his ridiculous conclusion of 645,000 defensive uses of handguns per year—based on anonymous telephone survey answers of 1,228 adults to a 1981 survey which obviously did not lend itself to obtaining accurate responses in the first instance. What does use of a handgun to prevent crime mean? To some people, it might mean having the gun in their house and feeling thus emboldened to shoo off a trespasser who may have intended nothing untoward at all, or like scenarios, where no actual crime was threatened or prevented, save in the imagination of the gun owner seeking to justify his or her self-endangerment and that of the household by having a gun around. Likely, four percent of any poll would claim without hesitation, if asked, that they were visited by men from Mars the previous night. Such "studies" as that which claim, on absurd, irrational assumptions, that 645,000 people annually used guns defensively between 1976 and 1981, conjured from thin air with a desired result in mind, embolden people to get themselves seriously injured or killed and are, if not ill-willed, stupidly conceived, as this stupid, lying gun-nut paper from 1990.

More than likely, as with most such dubious attributions, the supposed Freudian statement was originally conjured, not by the think-tank idiot prostituting himself for the supply-side end of the think tank, but by teenaged boys, or their mental equivalent, returning from a gay hunting trip and tilting glasses at the local pub, when one, remembering suddenly something he had read, or thought he read, which pricked his sense of unassailable masculine security and well-being, for his fascination with guns, stated in retributive spite, "I'll bet that guy Freud said that a fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity," withdrawing the while from his pocket his small silver pistol, with delicately ornate carvings engraved along each side, and pointing it at the forehead of one of his perceived more timid compatriots.

After a round of hearty guffaws and further tilted glasses, one of his fellow hunters, "Beefy", as they called him, more than slightly in his cups, no doubt then would have responded appreciatively, in his slow, low rolling drawl, nearly at times lapsing into whisper: "Yeah, that's for damn sure what he said. And I got my damned ten-point out dere in de pickup truck to prove it, and fourteen gators that I done wrustled with my bar' han's that I'll pick up from the doc next week when I get back t' Lousianar." Leaning forward, with eyes squinted tightly in apparent deeply reflective concentration on his next words, he added, with a flourish of his right arm stabbing wildly at the air with each dramatically delivered phrase, the scar on his upper lip, which he claimed was inflicted from the slash of a three-foot long sabre during a barfight in Lisbon with Turkish sailors, in fact caused by falling off his tricycle at age three onto his set of jacks, quivering each time his mouth opened: "And sharks: ten sharks which I caught with my bar' feet." Then, in conclusion, with sudden ejaculatory utterance, albeit deliberately delivered, emphasizing each syllable, in a distinctly more amplified voice: "I'm a man, and nobody, not even that feller in the bunk over mine in jail last year, is gonna take that 'way from me, pardner. Not even a tur'rist."

"A tourist?" inquired one of the hunting companions, a graduate of Yale.

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