The Charlotte News

Tuesday, October 21, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that about 1,500 Communist Chinese troops had attacked in a blinding rainstorm this night in a renewed assault on "Sniper Ridge", utilizing the cover of an intense artillery and mortar barrage, nevertheless repulsed by the South Koreans through heavy rifle and artillery fire. More than two hours later, the ridge remained quiet, according to correspondent John Fujii. An allied officer had said that the Chinese had directed their attack at "Pinpoint Hill", the highest peak on the ridge. The night had been so dark that the South Koreans could not see the Chinese approaching until they were almost upon them.

An ominous quiet hung over nearby "Triangle Hill", where U.S. Seventh Division troops awaited an expected Chinese attack. About 20 miles to the east, South Korean troops battled to within 40 yards of the crest of "Iron Horse Mountain" at noon this date, but then pulled back because their supporting tanks could not find the targets through a heavy fog. A chilly rain fell across the front and overcast skies grounded U.N. warplanes.

Reports from the front indicated that the Communists had lost more than 7,500 men killed or wounded during the first week of fighting on the two peaks, Triangle and Sniper, bringing reported enemy casualties for October to more than 25,000.

At the U.N. in New York, the U.S. this date blocked a Russian attempt to issue an immediate invitation to North Korea and Communist China to take part in U.N. debates on germ warfare. The motion to adjourn the debate was carried in the 15-nation Steering Committee by a vote of 11 to 2, with Poland and Russia dissenting, and one abstention, by Canada. Russia's Andrei Gromyko called it a "cowardly move" and said he would raise the subject again on the floor of the Assembly or in committee when the item came up. Poland had charged that the U.S. had deliberately sabotaged the truce talks in Korea and called on the General Assembly to find a speedy solution to the war. The U.S. did not oppose U.N. consideration of the Korean question and other aspects of the Polish "peace plan", and the Steering Committee then unanimously recommended its inclusion on the agenda of the Assembly. The 60-nation Political Committee was tentatively scheduled to meet the next afternoon, at which time it would take up all major questions concerning Korea.

In Berlin, the chief of detectives in the Soviet sector fled to the West this date and asked for asylum, telling the West Berlin police that his conscience would not any longer permit him to carry out the orders of his superiors. He brought his wife and dog with him and was being held for questioning to determine if his plea for political asylum was legitimate.

Governor Stevenson began a 12-state whistle-stop tour this date aimed primarily at capturing New York's 45 electoral votes. A cheering crowd of 5,500 persons greeted him in Springfield the previous night at the Armory as a sendoff for the tour. The Governor said that he was having trouble getting his opponent to "talk sense about the issues", that he was saying one thing while Senator Taft was assuring the country that he really meant something else. In the meantime, there was "no policy, no program and no real faith in the future of America". He said that the Republican oratory about "socialism, bureaucracy, regimentation" and the other "evils in the devil's diary" sounded like that of 4 to 16 years earlier and were "very familiar tunes", but not substitutes for positive programs. The Governor's campaign manager, Wilson Wyatt, the previous day expressed anger at what he regarded as "slander-a- day" tactics by the opposition.

The President spoke in Jersey City this date, indicating that Republican claims that his Administration had been soft on Communism were "outrageous falsehood". He again referred to the tactic as the "big lie" and that General Eisenhower had been "trying to sow false seeds of suspicion". In a subsequent stop at Newark, the President attacked the General on the civil rights issue, indicating that the General had stated his support of the principles of civil rights during a speech in Newark the previous week, but obviously did not know "the hard facts of life about this subject", that he believed he could call a conference of governors to fix things, but that it would take more than that to "break down the barriers of prejudice". He asked why elect a man who wanted to call a conference when they could elect Governor Stevenson, who had called in the National Guard to stop the Cicero, Ill., riots and had abolished segregation in the Illinois National Guard by executive order, eliminated race from the State Employment Service forms, and helped end segregation in the Illinois public schools. The President would deliver 16 speeches during the day, including a major talk in Philadelphia late in the afternoon.

General Eisenhower reasserted this date, in Manchester, N.H., during his tour of New England, that he was a "no deal" man and had made no commitments to win supporters during the campaign. Senator Wayne Morse of Oregon had stated to the Portland Oregonian that he had been offered a high position in public life by the General in exchange for his support, and claimed to have documentary evidence of the fact which he would produce after the election. The Senator had been one of the original supporters of the General but had since withdrawn that support on the ground that the candidate had embraced policies and candidates the Senator could not accept. The General did not specifically mention the Senator during his remarks at Manchester, but appeared to be responding to his statements. He attacked the Administration for "spreading a campaign of fear", that a Republican victory would mean another great depression. He said that "lies" and "slander" had been spread about him that he was anti-Catholic and anti-Semitic, and expressed gratitude that Jewish and Catholic friends had come to his defense.

Samuel Lubell, who had been traveling the country to discern grassroots attitudes about the presidential campaign, indicates that partially offsetting the shift of former Truman voters to General Eisenhower was a counter-swing to Governor Stevenson by persons who had backed Governor Dewey in 1948, though the latter shift was by no means as heavy as the Democratic shift. The Republican defection was strongest in Illinois and in the cities of Philadelphia and New York, and could prove significant in a close election. It was primarily the result of fears of another depression and the dislike of a "military man" among some traditionally Republican voters, and also was attributed to the General's endorsement of Senator McCarthy and his tepid stand on civil rights. There was also the native pride in Governor Stevenson at work in Illinois, and the weakening of the Republican city machine in Philadelphia. The bitterness among many Taft supporters following the convention had dissipated, though occasionally that bitterness still surfaced.

The coal strike, in response to the Wage Stabilization Board's cut of forty cents from the $1.90 per day wage hike, to which the UMW and the coal operators had previously agreed, continued this date and spread unemployment to personnel of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, an important coal carrier, forced to lay off 1,200 workers, and to the Norfolk and Western, forced to lay off 300. Other railroads indicated that they would soon have to follow in laying off personnel. About 85 percent of the nation's 375,000 UMW members were now idle. Thus far, John L. Lewis, president of the UMW, had not ordered the strike and remained silent. Harry Moses, president of the Bituminous Coal Operators Association, had sent a letter to Mr. Lewis strongly urging resumption of work.

In Raleigh, Governor Kerr Scott said this date that he regarded General Eisenhower as a "sort of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" figure, and that the supporters of the General in the state were not enough to carry it in the election. He said that two years earlier, when reporters had been polling a governors conference on the possibility of the General running on either the Democratic or Republican ticket, he had wanted to know if the General was a "bird dog or a beagle hound" before he went hunting with him, and still did not know exactly what he was. When asked about Senator Willis Smith's recent statement that he was not enthusiastic about the Democratic ticket and whether that had hurt the party's chances in the state, the Governor said that it had not helped and might cause Democratic workers to realize that they still had a fight on their hands to carry the state.

In Salisbury, N.C., a series of minor explosions at a rubber company during the course of an hour shook a downtown building this date, sending six persons to the hospital. The fire chief attributed the explosions to faulty operation of a heating plant.

Donald MacDonald of The News indicates that a 24-year old house painter had been found shot to death early this date in the bathroom of a frame house, and a 21-year old man was being held on a charge of murder, as police questioned two other men who stated that they had witnessed the homicide. Police had found an open pocketknife in the victim's right hand and believed the killing was the result of an argument which had begun when someone in a crowd of persons who had been drinking at the house had called another person a profane name. Police were considering the possibility that the pocketknife had been planted in the dead man's hand after he was shot with a .25-caliber automatic pistol. The house in which the killing took place had long been associated with local crime, and two months earlier had been raided and seven persons arrested for gambling. It was the 21st homicide inside the Charlotte city limits so far during the year.

In New York, columnist Earl Wilson reported this date in the New York Post that Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner had separated after a quarrel in which the singer had called the police to have his wife, actress Lana Turner and other friends removed from his Palm Springs home. The column had stated that Mr. Sinatra had returned home after a television show on Saturday night to find his former girlfriend, Ms. Turner, and his wife, Ms. Gardner, "cutting him up" and had become so indignant that he summoned the police. In the meantime, Mr. Sinatra had moved in with his friend, composer Jimmy Van Heusen, and Ms. Gardner had taken off.

On the editorial page, "Truman's Low Blow at Ike" tells of the newspaper having disapproved of the restrictive McCarran-Walter immigration bill, which had been enacted over the President's veto earlier in the year, but that the President had resorted to strained logic to associate General Eisenhower with that bill, by finding that since Senators Nixon, McCarthy and Jenner had voted for the bill and to override the President's veto of it, and because the General had embraced those three, he had also embraced that position, which the President indicated amounted to "the very practices that identify the so-called 'master race' although he took a leading part in liberating Europe from their domination."

It proceeds to indicate that that the bill had been sponsored by two Democrats, that the override of the veto had been on a bipartisan basis, as had the original vote for the bill, and that, therefore, Governor Stevenson was just as susceptible to the charge made by the President, as the Governor had welcomed as an adviser to his campaign Senator William Fulbright of Arkansas, who had voted for the bill and to override the President's veto. Moreover, General Eisenhower had said that the immigration law was "another glaring example of the failure of our national leadership to live up to high ideals" and that the McCarran Act would cause European immigrants to view as a mirage the ideal which had beckoned them, recommending that it be rewritten.

The piece finds that blame could also not be placed on the President for such laws as the McCarran Act, any more than it could be associated with either of the two candidates. The onus of responsibility belonged on the bipartisan coalition of members of Congress who had enabled its passage. But, it finds, the President had detracted from his good record on immigration by his unwarranted attack on General Eisenhower regarding the issue, that he had engaged in guilt by association, the same smear technique which characterized "many of the bigots and 'master race' proponents he condemns."

"One More Day To Register" reminds that the following Saturday would be the last opportunity in the county to register to vote in the general election, reminding that about a third of the total adult population of the county had not yet done so, about 38,000 voters, more than the record 36,000 voters in the county in the 1940 presidential election. The get-out-the-vote drive in the county had produced 15,000 new registered voters, adding to the 63,000 already registered. But, it indicates, it was not good enough, and so urges those who had not done so yet to register the following Saturday.

"Another Coal Strike" tells of the UMW strike in response to the Wage Stabilization Board's decision to reduce by 40 cents the $1.90 per day wage increase, to which the UMW and the coal operators had agreed, subject to the approval of the WSB. It indicates that the average citizen might be tempted to blame the union, and it finds nothing exemplary in its behavior in refusing to abide by the law requiring WSB approval of the agreed wage increase. But the industry had agreed to the wage increase, presumably because they found it justified, and had not required the union to agree in advance to accept the WSB ruling, and thus the strike was really against the WSB rather than against the industry.

It had been reported that the industry had been induced to reach the agreement by the steel companies which owned the captive coal mines, as they were afraid of another stoppage of production after the spring steel strike. The Wall Street Journal had reported that the larger companies of the industry, to protect their share of a shrinking coal market, had decided to agree to the wage increase to put the squeeze on the small, independent concerns. Thus, industry was not without its share of blame in the resulting strike.

It finds, however, that fixing blame did not restore production of coal, necessary to keep the steel industry going, and so another strike threatened the national welfare, and, thus far, the best minds of the nation had been stymied in trying to stop them.

A piece from the Asheville Citizen, titled "Culture? But Listen!" tells of Clarence Griffin, editor of the Forest City Courier, having read in the Spartanburg Herald a letter to the editor which had claimed that South Carolina had been and still was "the cultural and political heart of the entire South," prompting Mr. Griffin to reply that he did not know where the cultural part came from unless the letter writer had been contemplating magnolia blossoms prior to the Civil War, indicating that the UNC press at Chapel Hill had published more books the previous year than had been turned out by any similar publisher in South Carolina during the previous five years.

The piece indicates that no one from South Carolina had distinguished themselves in the field of letters since DuBose Heyward, and Henry Timrod had been dead for 85 years, while books had been written across North Carolina in the meantime, such as those of Thomas Wolfe, Betty Smith, Inglis Fletcher and the revival of the short stories of O. Henry. Carl Sandburg had moved to the state and four outdoor historical dramas were drawing plentiful audiences. In the field of academic research, the state had Howard Odum, among others.

It concludes that the state knew about pride but that it had the culture.

Drew Pearson tells of a meeting of Midwest Ford dealers held in Omaha on October 10, at which they were told that a political emergency faced the nation and that each dealer would be expected to contribute to the RNC for use in the political campaign. Ford dealers from Nebraska and Iowa attended the meeting and earlier, a meeting had been held at Colorado Springs, at which the personal assistant to Henry Ford II told dealers that the future of Ford depended on a change of administration in Washington, that otherwise business was doomed in the country. Dealers in Omaha were planning to contribute between $100 and $1,000.

The meetings followed a pattern set by RNC chairman Arthur Summerfield, the largest Chevrolet dealer in the world, when he had been a Republican national committeeman for Michigan in 1946 and 1948. He had then collected Republican contributions from dealers based on the number of cars they had sold, leading eventually to an indictment of 20 of the dealers and the conviction of 18 for violation of the Corrupt Practices Act. As a result, the Ford dealers were being warned not to issue company checks, as had been the case with the convicted Chevrolet dealers. This was the reason that the Dewey wing of the party had been surprised at the selection of Mr. Summerfield as RNC chairman, as they believed it would take the punch out of the corruption issue against the Democrats.

Marquis Childs tells of reporters typically prior to an election at this stage looking to barometers of various types to predict the outcome, those barometers having pointed to Governor Dewey in 1948, and therefore, obviously having been incorrect, making the business more difficult in 1952. Mr. Childs finds that even the experts were offering their guesses with great timidity, certain that only Maine would go Republican and Georgia, probably Democratic. Many agreed that the popular vote would be close, but the experts believed that a large electoral vote majority might be achieved by General Eisenhower and that if Governor Stevenson were to win, it would likely be by a smaller electoral majority.

There were variables, however, which could not be accurately predicted, because of the 15 million new voters, expanding predicted electoral turnout to 63 million, and because of the women's vote, with many women seeing General Eisenhower as a "father image". There was also the so-called hidden vote, those who did not disclose their preference for Governor Stevenson because of social or economic pressures, might even wear buttons for Ike, but, ultimately, would cast their votes for the Governor.

The minorities in the cities, with the possible exception of Polish-Americans, were, as they had been in recent elections, strongly Democratic, especially the black vote in both the North and the South. Pollster Elmo Roper indicated that he had never seen such uncertainty and difficulty of making a decision among the electorate, suggesting that a dramatic development could determine the outcome, even if occurring in the latter two or three days of the campaign. Such an event also might precipitate a landslide in either direction. "So, all hands had better develop steady nerves for the ups and downs just ahead."

Joseph & Stewart Alsop, having failed to reach consensus between them on their impressions of the campaign after separately riding with the candidates across the country and back, resigned themselves to answer the question of who, among the undecided voters, had been captured by whom and whether they would stay caught.

They find General Eisenhower reminiscent of Wendell Willkie in 1940 for having been nominated by the moderate-progressive, world-minded wing of the party and each having gotten off to a bad start in their campaigns. General Eisenhower, like Mr. Willkie, had been exposed to pressures from the more conservative, isolationist wing of the party by the fact of the weak start, and both had yielded to those pressures, making political compromises and appeals for votes in the process, although the General had not gone as far as had Mr. Willkie in that direction, or, for that matter, as had FDR in 1940, when both candidates promised to keep the country out of the war.

But since the Al Smith dinner in New York recently, General Eisenhower had been talking like himself again. They suggest that it might be a bad thing to talk out of different corners of one's mouth in different parts of the country, but the practical fact remained that the tone and character of General Eisenhower's planned campaign conclusion would give him an invaluable record to which to point if elected.

Governor Stevenson had also made important compromises and had experienced early disappointments in the campaign. The mere fact of his nomination had not vaulted him into prominence in the country such that a sober discussion of the current issues, as his campaign had originally hoped, had increased his popularity. As a result, he had been forced to seek to maintain the old Democratic alliances among farmers, laborers, blacks and the South, a major concession, but one which, like that of General Eisenhower's compromises, would likely not impair his power to take independent action if elected.

A letter writer finds "Richard (What a voice) Nixon" to be the latest new blues singer, indicates that singer Johnnie Ray had not made any more than $18,000, the amount of the secret fund raised by California millionaires to pay Mr. Nixon's expenses, when he first started in the music business. He recommends that on his first program for the millionaires club, the Senator should have sung the old hillbilly number, "I Don't Want Your Greenback Dollar", and believes he could improve his shows by using "Mammy" as a theme song. "My heart bleeds for the poor Richard lad."

We appreciate the sentiment, but, it appears, based on the snie, we shall simply have to look forward to another day down the road.

A letter writer responds to another letter writer who had said he would cease reading the newspaper after it had endorsed General Eisenhower, says that he would have to read something other than a Charlotte newspaper, finds it "too bad".

A letter writer from Pinehurst responds to a letter written by a Greensboro doctor on October 14, in which he had stated that had it not been for Senator McCarthy, Alger Hiss would still be making the nation's foreign policy. He corrects that Senator McCarthy had nothing to do with the Hiss case, which had developed prior to Senator McCarthy's claims of Communists in the State Department, first stated in February, 1950. He also indicates that the Senator had been unable to prove that a single Communist existed within the Government. He finds it shocking that there was such a lack of information indicated by someone who was in an honored profession requiring a great degree of education and thought.

Well, we saw in that 1956 presentation on polio, which we cited yesterday, a former Surgeon General of the United States exhibit, not just once, but twice, his ineptitude in simple arithmetic, by saying that his chart, showing the 29.2 incidents of polio among non-inoculated children per 100,000, demonstrated a rate "almost four times as high" as the 6.3 incidents among inoculated children. So, we infer that doctors, sometimes in stressing too much the scientific realm of academic study, especially that part of it pertaining to nepotism, might forsake such courses as math and history, or even the ability to read simple charts.

Oops, sorry about the inadequate medication and your resulting heart attack, as it appeared your cholesterol levels were not even four times greater than the recommended standard for your age, height and weight, when in fact they were nearly five times higher, but I am going to come to your funeral and provide appropriate obsequies and will be there for your wife and children.

A letter writer indicates that it had been stressed that Governor Stevenson was an excellent speaker, but he differs, wishing to cite instances where his timing had been off and his statements, deliberate distortions of the truth. He proceeds to do so. He finds the Governor's stand on FEPC to be complete hypocrisy, as the National Guard had to be called out in Cicero, Illinois, because of a large riot in response to a black family moving into the all-white suburb. He also wonders how Senator Sparkman could explain the white supremacy motto next to the Democratic column on the Alabama ballot.

The Governor had sponsored a state version of FEPC in Illinois and gotten it through the Republican Legislature, and also had called out the National Guard in response to the Cicero riot, as the President this date had pointed out, and could obviously not be held responsible for a bunch of white idiots in that town—unless, projecting forward five years, you will wish also to hold President Eisenhower responsible for a bunch of white idiots in Little Rock, Arkansas, where he would have to Federalize the National Guard to quell the interracial tensions regarding the integration of Central High School in that city.

Try to keep the facts straight.

A letter writer urges voting for Charles Jonas for the Congress, accuses incumbent Representative Hamilton Jones of favoring the special groups and particular individuals.

A letter writer from Lincolnton takes issue with the editorial, "Will Your Taxes Be Cut Next Year?", indicating that most of the reason for high taxes lay in the non-reducible area of defense and veterans matters, and interest on the existing debt. He finds this statement untrue, says that the Administration indicated that high taxes were necessary to prevent inflation, but wants to know how Government spending was any less inflationary than private spending, objects to the deficit spending of the Democrats during the prior 20 years, while the interest on the national debt had risen from 500 million in 1932 to six billion in 1952.

He does not seem to factor in that in the interim there had been World War II and the need to rebuild Western Europe and Japan after the war to prevent further incursion by the Communists, and that it had taken huge Federal spending during the Thirties on the domestic front to get the country out of the Republican laissez-faire, trickle-down depression of the Twenties. It is, truly, best to keep the facts straight and not just engage in rhetorical flourishes to hear one's partisan head rattle.

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