The Charlotte News

Monday, October 20, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports, via Stan Carter, that hordes of screaming Chinese Communists had charged recklessly through their own artillery fire on Sunday and early this date, but had failed in an attempt to recapture two important central front hills, "Triangle Hill" and "Sniper Ridge", as they were repulsed in hand-to-hand combat by U.S. and South Korean troops. Allied front-line officers estimated that a full regiment of between 3,000 and 3,500 men had advanced on each of the hills late on Sunday, and at the last report, the Communists held "Pikes Peak", the northwestern knob of "Triangle Hill". Allied troops held the remainder of the hill. By early afternoon, it was reported by Milo Farneti, the South Korean troops controlled all of their old positions. U.N. officers estimated that between dusk on Sunday and 9:00 a.m. on Monday, 40,000 rounds of enemy artillery, mortar and rocket fire had fallen at or near "Sniper Ridge", and another 5,000 rounds of mortar and artillery fire at or near "Triangle".

Allied fighter-bombers passed over Papa-san Mountain, overlooking both hills, dropping bombs, rockets and napalm on that Communist staging area.

South Korean troops fought this date toward the crest of "Iron Horse Mountain", on the west-central front, and at last report, the issue remained in doubt. Action elsewhere along the front was light.

At the U.N. in New York, Peru called on the General Assembly this date to consider creation of a commission aimed at breaking the deadlock in the Korean truce talks regarding repatriation of prisoners of war. The commission, to be made up of the countries involved in the war, as well as other members of the Assembly and non-members with a tradition of international neutrality, would supervise the screening and return of all Communists held by the allies. On the surface, it appeared similar to the proposal made by Poland the previous week.

In Springfield, Ill., eight prominent supporters of Governor Stevenson deplored as "unfair and unwarranted" the use of the Governor's deposition on behalf of Alger Hiss in his perjury case in 1949 as part of the presidential campaign, and contended that General Eisenhower was "more vulnerable" on the issue. They indicated that the General, as a member of the board of trustees of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in 1948 while Mr. Hiss had been the president of that organization, had provided a more personal endorsement. They recommended that neither case be used in the campaign. Senator Nixon had attacked Governor Stevenson's "association" with Mr. Hiss, as had Senator Joseph McCarthy. Senator Nixon had charged in Winnetka, Ill., the previous week that the Governor was "a man who was duped by Communist Alger Hiss and who has apparently never regretted his action in defending him, who has never uttered a public word of indignation at Hiss's infamous misdeeds." In response to the statement by the eight Stevenson supporters, General Eisenhower's press secretary, James Hagerty, stated: "To paraphrase Shakespeare, methinks the gentleman's friends protest too much."

In Connecticut, General Eisenhower continued his campaign, accusing the Democrats of spreading "poison" and "fantastic lies" in an effort to defeat him. Despite snow, large crowds gathered to cheer the General at every stop. In Bridgeport, he said that there had been charges that his election would mean another depression, that he would cut taxes for management and not for workers and abolish unions, all of which he called "lies and distortions". At Stamford, he promised that "every single bit of strength" in the nation would be mustered against another depression. He said that the great issue of the day was peace. During the ensuing two days, he would also tour Rhode Island, Massachusetts and New Hampshire.

In Washington, a two-member panel of the Subversive Activities Control Board, after hearing more than 14 months of testimony, this date called the American Communist Party "a puppet of the Soviet Union" and recommended that the party be required to register with the Attorney General as a subversive organization, listing its officers and members and providing a financial accounting. The McCarran Internal Security Act of 1950 required that all "Communist front" and "Communist action" organizations register with the Government. The Communists had claimed that the party was not subversive, while the Justice Department had said that it was.

In Pittsburgh, it was reported that most of the country's 375,000 soft coal miners refused to report to work this date in protest of the Wage Stabilization Board-ordered cut of 40 cents from the $1.90 daily wage increase, to which the coal industry and the UMW had recently agreed but which was subject to WSB approval before implementation. All of the UMW membership in West Virginia had struck. UMW president John L. Lewis refused comment on the strike. The largest coal stockpile in history, except for 1942, existed, with an estimated 85 million tons of coal on hand. WSB chairman Archibald Cox had appealed to the "sound common sense of the coal miners and wisdom of their leaders" to abide by the WSB decision and not strike.

The Justice Department announced this date that four members of a New York syndicate had been indicted on charges of evading income taxes on huge profits from the sale of sugar and corn syrup. One of those indicted had been a former assistant U.S. Attorney in New Jersey. The indictment charged that the four men owed more than a million dollars in unpaid taxes and penalties.

The New York Post said this date that it had instructed its attorneys to sue columnist Walter Winchell for defamation because of statements he had made in his radio and television broadcasts the previous night. The newspaper said that as long as Mr. Winchell made his scurrilous attacks only in print, it believed it could counter them in the same medium, but when he extended them to broadcast media, the newspaper had no effective means of rebuttal and so took legal action. The broadcasts were carried over ABC.

William Manchester of the Baltimore Evening Sun—who would later write The Death of a President, regarding the assassination of President Kennedy, published in 1967—writes of the polio vaccine being developed at Johns Hopkins, as disclosed this date by the American Public Health Association. According to Dr. Howard Howe, professor of epidemiology at Hopkins, the vaccine was comprised of killed polio virus, which would cause children to develop antibodies against the virus. Dr. Howe said that the vaccine was not yet ready for use and that he was not sure that it would be the vaccine to be used in large trials. It had been tried on eleven children between the ages of 2 and 5 years, all of whom were "low-grade imbeciles" living at a State Training School in Maryland, whose parents had consented to the experiment. The human trial followed Dr. Howe's successful immunization of chimpanzees in 1950. None of the children on whom the experiment was performed were ever in danger and only one of them had antibodies against more than one type of polio virus prior to the vaccination. The vaccine was administered to six of the children and the other five were used as a control group, receiving no vaccine. The six who were inoculated developed antibodies in their blood, while the five who had not been inoculated did not. The doctor said that polio was as common as measles, but that most people did not know they had it. Anyone who had contracted the virus developed antibodies for protection, and of every 1,000 infections, it was estimated that less than ten resulted in paralysis, presumably because the person had not developed enough antibodies in time to halt the infection.

In New Bedford, Mass., a fishing dragger returned to port this date with a load of fish and a plug for Adlai Stevenson, as the captain reported that a 100-pound sea turtle hauled aboard had painted in white on its back: "Vote for Stevenson and keep food on the table."

In Hollywood, singer Ginny Simms and her oil man husband, Bob Calhoun, had separated again, with Ms. Simms saying that there would be no reconciliation this time. They had been married the previous June 27 in Las Vegas and had announced a separation in September, but then announced in early October that all was well again.

Auh, that's too bad. They were such a nice couple. Don't it make you sad?

On the editorial page, "More about Job Classification" indicates that City Councilman Basil Boyd had declared flatly against a proposed job classification plan for City employees and, after having read his statement, the piece had determined that he either misunderstood the proposal or the newspaper misunderstood it.

Fine, you go figure it out and tell us when you have the answer and we'll move on. This is what you get when you overload the letters to the editor column for two consecutive days last week and take up our precious time with that nonsense—with two more days to come this week.

"Wise Decision" indicates that by retaining the services of the Englehardt school planning firm to map the spending of future building funds in Mecklenburg County, the School Board had taken a progressive step which would ensure against planning mistakes. It urges that it was important for the County and City school boards to cooperate as much as possible to provide for adequate facilities in the areas presently part of the county system but likely soon to be incorporated within the city limits. The firm which had been hired had performed the school planning for the City for years and had accumulated vast knowledge of the local population trends, and so, it finds, the hiring of the firm for the County planning had been a wise decision.

"A Party, Like Grass, Must Have Roots" tells of the Washington Post having concluded that the Southern revolt had made the region doubtful in terms of it being taken for granted any longer by the Democratic Party, advancing the time when a true two-party system would be a reality in the region. It finds the conclusion safe, with the defections of such Democratic leaders as Governors James Byrnes of South Carolina, Robert Kennon of Louisiana, and Allan Shivers of Texas, as well as Senators Harry F. Byrd and Willis Smith, having advanced that day. But, it finds, it was still far off.

It had long been the case that there were "presidential Republicans", those who were registered as Democrats who voted for Republicans in national elections in the South. The difference was that now it was safe to admit such voting, even fashionable in some areas. There would never be a true two-party system in the region until the Republican strength was built at the grassroots level. It cautions that it would be a slow and discouraging process as Democratic legislatures had prescribed many means for holding the Republicans in check. It indicates that the newspaper welcomed the activity of Democrats for Eisenhower, but that until it moved into the realm of Congressional, state and local offices, the region would never have its full political power. It urges that independent voters should encourage the development of two responsible parties in the region, as without that choice, the independent could not truly be independent.

"The Role of Bipartisan Commissions" tells of General Eisenhower, in a speech in Memphis, having expanded his views on agriculture, emphasizing planning for a program to replace the present 90 percent parity formula when it expired at the end of 1954. He wanted to establish a bipartisan farm commission to review existing farm programs and plan for the future. The General had also suggested a bipartisan commission to make recommendations on better government, and in a speech in Baltimore on September 26, had proposed a bipartisan civilian-soldier commission to re-study the operations of the Defense Department.

The President had also relied during his tenure on bipartisan commissions, the Hoover Commission, to study streamlining and efficiency in the executive branch, the commission which had studied universal military training, as well as the civil rights commission. Presently, there was a commission studying the health needs of the nation and another studying development of the Missouri Valley.

It indicates that members of Congress were inclined to give more weight to the views of such a group than to those of a Cabinet member or other official of the Administration, as such commissions tended to lift matters out of partisan politics. It thus supports the General's proposal for an agricultural commission and suggests that farm leaders begin sorting out their differences in preparation for sitting on such a commission. It also suggests that a similar group be appointed regarding foreign policy.

How about one to study Dick? That's already overdue.

Drew Pearson tells of Senator McCarthy having deposited more than $24,000 in cash to his bank accounts since 1946, providing the year by year totals, unusual for the time. He suggests that the average person who handled their taxes as had the Senator for the prior six years would have been in jail, but that it was an unwritten rule at the IRB not to scrutinize too closely the tax returns of members of Congress. A large part of his money, some $113,000, had been received from unidentified sources in Wisconsin. He had apparently used his office assistant and his brother to hide the source of much of that income. He had managed to use $70,500 in income during the years 1935-45 to purchase stock worth $180,000, occurring some five years before beginning to talk about Communists in the Government, in 1950.

During his first years in public office, beginning in 1935 through 1942, he averaged only a little more than $4,000 annually, but suddenly, in 1943, earned $40,500 from the sale of stocks, despite having been in the Marine Corps during part of that time. He also gave large amounts to charity, one of which, a Catholic charity in Burma, did not exist.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop indicate that after traveling with the candidates across the country separately for several weeks, they had reunited and pooled their impressions to try to provide a cohesive picture, finding it not "immensely enlightening". Their point of agreement was that there were some "very phony cliches" being "parroted by all and sundry". One was that Governor Stevenson had been talking over the head of the average voter while being a great speaker, such a cliche being reminiscent of the ads which promised joining the national elite by buying a particular toothpaste.

Some of the Governor's speeches had been overly pedantic and fell flat, such as the labor speech in Detroit and the one on atomic energy in Connecticut. But usually, he was able to charm and often persuade his audiences, and was attracting increasing numbers at his campaign stops.

Another phony cliché was that Senator Nixon's September 23 television speech on his expense fund was an unquestionable triumph with the average voter, though not particularly liked by individuals who found it corny soap opera. Besides anecdotal evidence, there were some hard facts showing that the speech had not been an unqualified success, as the pro-Nixon San Francisco Chronicle had reported receiving 2,000 letters after the speech, of which 90 percent were critical of the Senator, and many other newspapers had reported a similar response.

Another such cliché was that General Eisenhower was a poor campaigner. The Alsops find him to be a moderate speaker, but one who could also project a warm personality to his audiences.

Senator Nixon's praise received after his speech appeared to have gone to his head, as he was furious after General Eisenhower continued to ask him for a personal accounting, even after the speech, prompting the Senator to tell the General, "You can't do this to me." His aides had said that he was not "going to crawl on his belly to that so-and-so." He probably won't grovel either.

Robert C. Ruark finds that children and nice old ladies preferred General Eisenhower to Governor Stevenson, but that younger females preferred the Governor. He understands the former preference but not the latter. The General also had an edge in that wife Mamie was appealing to middle-aged and older women, while the Governor was divorced.

"Ruling out such vital points as how the boys stand on sin, death, taxes, war, peace and prosperity, you would say that Ike edges Adlai in the simple charm department and concedes in the razor-tongue category."

A letter writer thanks the newspaper for including "Political Fare for Tonight" on the radio page.

A letter writer from Arlington, Nebraska, indicates that she had seen that the newspaper had endorsed General Eisenhower and advises that every vote "you Southerners give the Republicans is just like sticking a knife in the back of every soldier who died in the Civil War fighting the Republicans."

Don't you think it's time to get over that?

A letter writer from Hamlet indicates that she had read the newspaper for a number of years and received a lot of pleasure from it, but disapproved of its endorsement of General Eisenhower or any other candidate for the presidency, believes that newspapers ought be dispensers of the news in an unbiased way.

A letter writer from Greenville, S.C., indicates that she was from the Northwest but had been in Greenville for the previous few years and was enjoying the region, compliments the newspaper on its "progressive spirit" and willingness to see more than one side of the political situation—presumably, though not saying so, referencing the newspaper's endorsement of General Eisenhower

A letter writer replies to a letter of October 16 and wonders what the writer had meant when she had said that the President had, according to reporters, degraded the South in his speech in Harlem. The writer indicates that the President had spoken the truth about some people in the South and expresses admiration for the President for speaking in Harlem and for his understanding of the "common hard-working man". The writer indicates that the previous writer had asked that her name be withheld because the President had done a favor for her upon request, finds that a good reason, and asks that the writer's name be withheld because the writer knew the prior writer.

A letter writer from Centerville, O., wonders whether Senator Taft would continue to be the "power behind the throne" or, with such "a weak vacillating candidate", whether some other strong man might grab General Eisenhower should Senator Taft relax his hold. She advises not taking a chance and to write in the name of Senator Taft for the presidency and Senator Byrd for the vice-presidency—"the cream of both parties". She indicates that if Senator Taft was going to win the election anyway, he ought win it in his own name and not for "another old soldier who ought to just fade away".

A letter writer from San Francisco, writing in all capital letters in the form of a telegram, indicates admiration for the editorial in support of General Eisenhower, though the writer prefers Governor Stevenson, says he would write before "ADLAI MOVES INTO WHITE HOUSE."

A letter from the chief of the Charlotte Fire Department, Donald Charles, thanks the newspaper for its October 10 editorial, "Fight Fire with Precautions", during Fire Prevention Week.

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