The Charlotte News

Thursday, November 16, 1950


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that U.N. forces drove forward all along the Korean war front despite the cold weather, with an advance by American forces of five miles against enemy artillery, tanks, and infantry in the Pungsan hills of the northeast sector, to within 20 air miles of the Manchurian border, while on the northwest front, American, British and South Korean troops advanced as much as four miles through a sleet storm without firing a shot. South Korean troops stabilized the left center of the front with short fighting gains, and drove forward two miles in the northeast sector. Parka-clad U.S. Marines fought against a sizable enemy force while advancing 2.5 to three miles up the icy west side of the Changjin reservoir.

The U.S.S. Rochester and American planes frustrated an enemy amphibious landing behind South Korean lines on the northeastern front, wiping out half of the battalion making the landing, after it had punched five holes in the South Korean lines.

Correspondent Tom Stone, with the U.S. Seventh Division, tells of five Sherman tanks with armed troops riding on top moving along a hill of the Ungi River valley in the northeast sector while the division moved closer to Manchuria, about 25 miles away. Opposition was moderate. The temperatures in the 4,000-foot hills were as low as 20 below zero. Men had to crawl the previous night on their hands and knees over ice-caked ground. Six soldiers had waded in the ice cold waters of the Ungi, resulting in their clothes becoming frozen. Getting wet in freezing temperatures without assistance resulted in coma within ten minutes and death in 20 minutes.

The Defense Department announced that the total American casualties in Korea through November 10 were 28,881, of whom 4,798 had been killed, 19,740 wounded and 4,347 missing, with 517 of the missing having been found alive. The Army had suffered the bulk of the casualties. The actual numbers were higher but would not be released until notification of kin.

In Berlin, the Western powers delivered eight British tanks and provided 200 American troop reinforcements and announced that they would arm the 13,800-man West German police force with submachine guns and automatic rifles, most of which would remain in Western custody to be issued only in the case of emergency. The East German police were equipped with tanks and artillery, in addition to automatic weapons. West German police had been equipped only with pistols, truncheons, and tear gas.

The House Ways & Means Committee voted to refuse to hear testimony of witnesses who opposed the President's excess profits tax. Chairman Robert Doughton said that the Committee had a mandate to make a recommendation and had not time to go into the entire field of taxation.

Near Montpellier, France, an American B-50 crashed with one engine on fire. Police said that at least ten of the eleven aboard had parachuted to safety, with only one having any injury. The eleventh person had also parachuted but had not yet been found, though believed to be safe.

In Philadelphia, Bell Telephone applied for an injunction to prevent picketing by Western Electric equipment installers of its exchanges in the city. The picketing had resulted in violence and police intervention on Tuesday and Wednesday to enable operators to report to work.

In London, actor Jimmy Stewart had undergone an appendix operation the previous day and his condition was satisfactory.

In Charleston, S.C., searchers found a life jacket and an empty rowboat while searching for the missing wife of a wealthy insurance executive and her escort, tossed into the sea the previous day when their fishing boat capsized. Two other persons on board had survived. Rescuers believed the two were drowned.

In Charlotte, the Christmas parade would take place this night, beginning at 6:00.

Washington United Press reporter Merriman Smith, on hand for the Christmas Festival, spoke at a luncheon, stating that the President was far from a decision on whether he would run in 1952. Bess Truman had been more disturbed by the November 1 assassination attempt at Blair House than had been the President, and, Mr. Smith believed, the attempt would have a lot to do with whether he might run, as Mrs. Truman's opinion on the the matter would outweigh all others. He said that the close press coverage of the President was a matter of tradition since the days of George Washington.

On the editorial page, "Two Ways to Tax War Profits" finds that the President's proposed four billion dollar excess profits tax retroactive to July 1 presented the Congress with a controversial question. Whereas most agreed that war profiteering had to be stopped, it had also been true in World War II that the 85 percent excess profits tax had been applied in a discriminatory manner, was impossible to enforce and resulted in gross waste, as companies made large expenditures on the theory that the Government would take most of the profits after a certain level had been reached.

The President's proposal had left it to Congress to work out the formula.

The Committee for Economic Development, a group of progressive bankers and businessmen, proposed a plan whereby a corporate profits tax of 38 percent would be imposed on profits over $25,000, plus a defense profits tax at a flat rate on all corporate profits, proposed to be set temporarily at 15 percent. It also proposed such a defense tax on individual income in excess of the exemption and present tax. The group contended that this proposal would promote business efficiency and discourage extravagant expenditures, would be less of a handicap to new and growing business, would be easier to administer as it would not rely on an historical base period, and would produce as much revenue as the excess profits tax.

While finding that this proposal also had shortcomings, the piece finds it superior to the excess profits tax.

"Incredible Mismanagement" tells of the conflict in the story regarding adequate winter clothing for the American troops in Korea, with Army officials in Tokyo contending that there was enough winter clothing to go around but that the troops had outrun their supply lines, while correspondents and field commanders denied the claim, saying that it was simply a matter of lack of supply.

It finds that in either case, the lack of winter clothing in such bitter cold weather as prevailed in Korea was cruel and criminal. It favors not only immediate remedy but that those responsible for the problem be singled out and disciplined.

"New Bus Plan Enters Crucial Stage" reviews the history of the Charlotte bus route plan proposed by City traffic engineer Herman Hoose, finds that if Duke Power, which operated the bus system, accepted the plan, it would be fortunate, but that if it contested it and the City Council was convinced that the plan was better than the current bus system, then the Council would have to go before the State Utilities Commission to try to get the Hoose plan approved. The desires of the people for a better bus system, it offers, could not be denied.

"Ode to the A. Cyanea" quotes from the November 3 Manchester (England) Guardian's "A Country Diary", regarding the appearance at Red Arches pond of the Aeshna dragonfly, which it took to be the Southern Aeshna, A. cyanea. The "Diary" recorded that none had previously been observed by its author, J. D. H., after mid-October, though records showed it could be seen as late as November 12.

The piece then provides its ode, beginning:

Forlorn little lingerer at Red Arches pond,
We look on you with eyes that are fond;
For never this late did we ever see a
Southern Aeshna (A. cyanea).


Our bottle was waiting for just your ilk,
With your pointed tail and your wings of silk.
But, at the last moment, we remember
You're a privileged bug on 2 November.

We can a coda add:

But then, on second thought,
Our arched shoe got antsy fast
And we stepped, then caught
You and smashed you to fancy paste.

A piece from the Hickory Record, titled "Close Call for Jones", finds that Congressman Hamilton Jones's narrow win by 4,000 votes over Republican Louis Rogers was doing pretty well considering that the Republicans in the district had effected their best organization in twenty years and that Mr. Rogers had been a formidable opponent.

Bill Sharpe, in his weekly "Turpentine Drippings", snippets from newspapers around the state, provides one from the Zebulon Record which quotes R. V. Felhauer, a former Missouri newspaperman, who said that Dan Anthony, editor of the Leavenworth Times fifty or more years earlier, had said to his reporters that whenever they had an urge to use the word "very" in a sentence, they should substitute "damn". The piece suggests that while "very" served as an ubiquitous adjective to describe things as a child, it should be discarded as an adult. If one could not think of a suitable word to describe someone who was "very" something, then the something should suffice.

It is akin to the overuse of "iconic" today. Just say, "damned fine" instead, and the point is made much more forcefully and equally as absurdly, viz.: She was a damned fine actress in her day. The house was of a damned fine design. His damned fine athletic skills surpassed those of all of his peers. The car was a damned fine example of German engineering expertise. The damned fine images in the damned fine magazine will live on in the hearts and minds of all who see them.

The Waynesville Mountaineer tells of a moonshiner in the mountains taking a jug of his new brew down the road, holding a gun in the other hand, stopping a stranger and insisting that he take a drink at gunpoint, whereupon the stranger said it was terrible stuff, to which the moonshiner, handing the gun to the stranger, said to hold the gun on him while he took a drink also.

That one is as old as the hills.

John Bragaw of The State tells of the wife of a hotel manager who was sent to the doorman to find out what he would say when asked where she should eat. He told her to eat at the competition. When confronted by the manager, the doorman admitted what he had recommended but said that if the manager had seen the woman, he would have realized she did not belong in the hotel.

The Sandhill Citizen reports that a first grade teacher was asked by her students at the end of the year why she was not being promoted the next year.

And on forth and on forth, so.

Drew Pearson draws comparison between the midterm elections of 1926 and those of 1950. In 1926, when Calvin Coolidge was President, the Democrats made gains in the Senate to within one seat of the majority, and the Republicans in 1950 had gained to within two seats, while the House remained Republican in 1926 by a margin of 42 seats, whereas in 1950, the Democrats maintained their majority by 34 seats.

He tells of some of the people who entered the Senate in 1926, including Millard Tydings, who had just been defeated in Maryland, and Alben Barkley, now Vice-President. Robert Wagner of New York was another, who had retired in 1949 because of health reasons and Herbert Lehman had just been elected to fill that full term after defeating the interim appointee in 1949, John Foster Dulles. Elmer Thomas of Oklahoma, who was elected originally in 1926, had just retired.

In 1928, President Coolidge had chosen not to run again, after having been elected in 1924, following his succession to the Presidency after the death in August, 1923 of Warren Harding. Mr. Pearson speculates whether President Truman might choose to do likewise, as Bess Truman wanted him to do.

The Secret Service had increased the bodyguard for the President following the assassination attempt by the two Puerto Rican Nationalists on November 1, but the President remained as carefree as ever, saying to his guards, "When the good Lord wants me, he'll take me."

The Capitol physician, Dr. George Calver, was giving advice to Democratic Senators to stay out of filibusters as the practice was bad for the heart. It was especially critical in the new Senate, with a margin of only two seats.

Some advisers to the President believed that he should propose a liberal program to the Congress so that, even if he should be blocked by the Republican-Southern Democratic coalition, he would have a program on which to run in 1952. Other advisers suggested that he offer an olive branch to the Dixiecrats.

Secretary of Agriculture Charles Brannan was giving a series of speeches, one of which dealt with proposed land reform in Korea, to challenge the Soviet program which allocated land to the peasant farmers but without title.

Joseph and Stewart Alsop discuss the probability that the 82nd Congress would dismantle the foreign policy which had taken five years to build since the end of the war. The leadership would be dominated by Senators Taft and Harry F. Byrd plus two or three other conservative Southern Democrats. Senator Taft had voted for the Marshall Plan but against NATO, the Military Aid Program, and Point Four, and in favor of the majority of attempts to gut foreign aid. Senator Byrd had voted against the Truman Doctrine aid to Turkey and Greece and against the Marshall Plan.

This tendency would be strengthened by the presence of new GOP Senators Everett Dirksen, Herman Welker, and Wallace Bennett, plus probably John Butler and Francis Case. The conservative Southern Democrats would add Senators-elect George Smathers and Willis Smith.

Such a switch in strength would have meant in the 81st Congress that Point Four would have failed, that the Taft-sponsored reduction in foreign aid and the crippling Wherry amendment to the foreign aid bill would have passed.

Moreover, once these votes were tallied, other Republicans and Democrats who leaned toward the conservatives might join the coalition, such as Bourke Hickenlooper for the Republicans and John Stennis, Allen Ellender, and Russell Long for the conservative Southern Democrats.

Such a reversal was coming at a time when more foreign aid and defense spending was needed. Thus, the President would have to make a determined effort to re-establish bipartisanship in foreign policy, appointing officials who could talk sensibly to Congress, a commission to deal with McCarthyism, and appeasing Southern Democrats. Such things would be distasteful to the President and even if he did them, the American system would be subjected to intolerable strain for the ensuing two years.

Robert C. Ruark, in Memphis, discusses the local movie censor Lloyd Binford, who was now taking a look at television shows. He had made his mark by banning any representations of black characters on the screen who were depicted as equals to the white characters. The banned films included "Imitation of Life", "Curley", and "Lost Boundaries". He approved "Pinky", starring a white actress, Jeanne Crain, as a mulatto passing for white in the big city, who returns home. He had banned a road show version of "Annie Get Your Gun" because of blacks dancing and singing on equal terms to white performers. He had also banned "Duel in the Sun", which Mr. Ruark regards as a blessing.

Mr. Binford had yet to view any television, had reservations whether he could engage in censorship as it was seen in the privacy of the home. Mr. Ruark lists some fare which Mr. Binford might find problematic, as the "Arthur Godfrey Show", which had the Mariners quartet with two black and two white singers, the "Jack Benny Program", with Rochester often outwitting his boss, "The Beulah Show", with Ethel Waters playing the lead character, and a revival of the "Our Gang" comedies as part of the "Howdy Doody Show".

Mr. Binford said that he might be able to censor what was viewed on television in public places, but that he would cross that bridge when he came to it.

Mr. Ruark tells of television being hot in the South and its depiction of equality of the races, extensive. He finds it ironic should television take up where Abraham Lincoln had left off, despite the endeavor of Mr. Binford.

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