The Charlotte News

Monday, May 12, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that the U.N. command this date sharply accused the Communists of using the armistice talks in Korea as a propaganda sounding board, stating that the Communists had issued "their most vicious propaganda attack of the ten-month old armistice negotiations" in their 34-minute "tirade, obviously prepared in advance" this date, "filled with invective, distortions and palpable lies". Another plenary session was scheduled for the following morning. North Korean General Nam Il, the lead Communist negotiator, accused the allies of mistreating Communist prisoners, prompting Vice-Admiral C. Turner Joy, the U.N. lead negotiator, to become more angry than reporters had ever seen him during the negotiations. The U.N. command spokesman said that the Communists had instructions to insist on continuing the talks, that they might utilize them as a propaganda sounding board. The negotiations remained deadlocked regarding the exchange of prisoners, the Communists contending that more than 70,000 Communist prisoners desired repatriation out of the 132,000 held by the allies. Admiral Joy indicated that the Communists, rather than facing facts and taking their own poll of the prisoners after signing the armistice, were willing to perpetuate the settlement negotiations indefinitely as a method to spread their propaganda. General Nam accused the allies of barring journalists from reporting on the "atrocities" taking place in its prisoner of war camps. As he spoke, a group of allied correspondents had departed from Eighth Army headquarters for Koje Island, the site of three recent Communist prisoner uprisings, including the taking of Brig. General Francis Dodd, commandant of the camp, hostage for four days before his release the prior Saturday.

General Dodd had stated this night that the prisoners who had held him had threatened to kill him if there was an attempted rescue by force. He said that the allied threat to use force, if necessary, to obtain his release, had a decided effect on the Communist prisoners in releasing him. He said that he was well treated by his captors and appeared healthy. He characterized the demands met to obtain his release as being inconsequential and minor.

General Mark Clark, who had just taken over as supreme commander of the U.N. forces, stated in Tokyo that the prisoners had been granted some minor concessions in exchange for the release of the General, though their original demands he regarded as "unadulterated blackmail". He said that any commitments made to obtain the release of the General had been made under duress and should be interpreted accordingly. General Clark said that a full investigation of the matter was underway.

U.N. warplanes again hit the North Korean rail network, producing 28 cuts in a short stretch of vital line near Huichon in the northwest sector. The object was to make repair work on the rail lines as difficult as possible by producing numerous cuts in the line.

On the ground, the Eighth Army indicated that there had been a "rough little fight" on Sunday, after 15 grenade-throwing enemy troops struck at a U.N. position northeast of Kumhwa on the central front, the enemy having withdrawn following a 20-minute fight. U.N. troops repulsed three enemy probes on the western front and six on the eastern front.

Oral argument before the Supreme Court regarding the steel seizure by the President had begun this date. John W. Davis, former Democratic nominee for the presidency in 1924, spoke as counsel for six of the steel companies. Philip Perlman, Solicitor General and acting Attorney General would speak for the Government's position. The major question before the Court was whether the President had inherent authority under the Constitution to seize a major industry during a national emergency, but there were many ways by which the Court might sidestep that issue. The Court disposed of its reading of decisions this date in a matter of minutes, leaving six full hours to hear the oral argument.

Public hearings began this date before the Senate Elections subcommittee on whether Senator Joseph McCarthy ought be ousted from his seat based on the claims by Senator William Benton that he committed perjury in his contentions that there were Communists within the Government. Senator Guy Gillette, chairman of the subcommittee, began by reading correspondence from Senator McCarthy to Senator Gillette which questioned the motives of the subcommittee, stating in conclusion that the subcommittee had approached its task without any prejudice, promising the "fairest consideration" for both Senators McCarthy and Benton. Senator McCarthy, in one of his letters, had stated that the Communist Party and Senator Benton were trying to smear him and that the subcommittee inquiry was aiding that effort. The first item against Senator McCarthy which was being heard was that he had violated Senatorial ethics in accepting $10,000 in 1948 from the defunct Lustron Corporation for an article he had written on housing.

Senator William Knowland of California proposed that shipments of jet planes to American allies be limited to ten percent of the nation's production until the Air Force was fully equipped with jets. He offered it as an amendment to the 6.9 billion dollar foreign aid bill presently pending before the Armed Services Committee.

The Navy announced that it had a new lightweight "seeing-eye" radar system for airplanes which warned pilots of other aircraft, mountains and inclement weather. The 250-pound radar set served to map the terrain below the aircraft for 200 miles in all directions. Such a set had been installed in the President's airplane, the Independence.

Leaders of the Oil Workers International Union had met at Toledo, Ohio, the previous day and agreed to "tighten up picketing at all points" where it might be legal to do so. The president of the union said that the walkout would continue until the 22 striking unions won new contracts. It was reported that the President might invoke the national emergency provisions of the Taft-Hartley Act, providing for an 80-day injunction against a strike, during which a Presidential board would meet and make recommendations for resolution of the strike.

As a result of the strike and the continuing restrictions on commercial aviation fuel, Capital Airlines announced cancellation of 30 flights, including two which served Charlotte on the Memphis-Norfolk route. It provides the altered schedules, should you need to check it for your flights between Memphis and Norfolk.

In Wilmington, N.C., the mother of two children testified this date that Klansmen had, the prior October 6, kidnapped her and flogged her about ten times with a wide leather strap despite her pleas for mercy. She had undergone surgery only six days prior to the beating. One man had held her as another flogged her across her hips, most of the hits knocking her to her knees, after which the men would then pick her up and continue with the flogging. She denied that she was cohabiting with the man who was also kidnapped and flogged with her, and was present at her home in Fair Bluff at the time of the alleged kidnapping. She and the man had been blindfolded and put into a car with five Klansmen and then driven five or more miles across the South Carolina state line. After flogging both of them, the abductors removed their blindfolds and told them to quit drinking and go to church the next day, then sent them home. She indicated that her bruises remained for three weeks. She recognized the voices of two of the men, both of whom she named and were among the eleven defendants, one having been the former Fair Bluff police chief and head of the since disbanded Fair Bluff Klan Klavern. She said that the floggers had not asked her whether she had been living with the man in her company. When they asked her if she knew who was doing the flogging, she had responded that she thought they were some of the people from the Causey section of Horry County in South Carolina, whereupon they beat her some more. She admitted in testimony that she had taken two drinks during the night of the flogging while at home but denied that she had passed out on the floor. The judge denied a defense motion to dismiss the indictment at the end of the prosecution's case. The prosecutor indicated that he would not seek the death penalty for the eleven defendants, each charged under the Federal Lindbergh kidnapping law.

It occurs to us, incidentally, that, for whatever reason, we have always had a definite aversion to clogging, no matter the tune accompanying the cloggers or who might be delivering that tune. Perhaps, the prejudice develops out of the similarity in sound of the noun describing the leg-stomping activity to that of "flogging", and the inevitable association therefore with the Klan, hence transforming the stomping activity in the darkly suspicious recesses of the mind to "klogging", though we mean no offense to ordinary cloggers who have no truck with flogging or the Klan. It does, however, suggest itself as having some kinship to the old German goosestep, does it not? Therein may lie the psychological foundation for our ultimate aversion to it. Anyway, please don't clog around us, as we may have to get up and leave. The very noise rather has the effect of stomping on our inner ear.

Former UNC football coach and present track coach R. A. Fetzer was retiring as athletic director after 31 years in the position, effective June 30, to be succeeded by Chuck Erickson. Mr. Fetzer would become executive director of the Morehead Foundation. Mr. Erickson would remain as athletic director until 1967.

In Moscow, large crowds lined up at movie theaters to see Johnny Weissmuller in the first showing of the third sequel of his "Tarzan" movies. They were the most successful foreign movies ever shown in the Soviet Union.

On an inside page, appears the fourth in the eight-part series of articles by Dr. W. C. Alvarez, titled "How To Live with Your Blood Pressure".

On page 3-B, Jo Lowman provides a diet schedule designed to slim the reader down in nine days. Go to it, fatso.

On the editorial page, "First Things First with Wiley" finds that Congress was subject to understandable pressure in an election year to reduce the President's request for 7.9 billion dollars in new appropriations for foreign aid. The figure was an estimate based on a compromise between what the military experts wanted to spend and what the President felt the nation was able to spend. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee had already reduced the request by a billion dollars and Senator Taft had demanded further reduction by 900 million.

The Senator did not agree with General Eisenhower's opinion that any reduction below 6.9 billion would endanger the proposed military buildup. The Senator, whose opinion was supported by "unthinking voters", would probably continue to voice that idea from the hustings, but, it suggests, Congress would likely pay more attention to Senator Alexander Wiley, the ranking Republican member of the Foreign Relations Committee, who called upon other Republicans to support the 6.9 billion figure, reminding his fellow Republicans that they were Americans first and members of a party second. It suggests that Senator Taft would be well advised to remember that point.

"N.C. Agriculture Is out of Balance" tells of North Carolina farm income in 1951 having been "gloomy", despite total cash farm income having been nearly 933 million dollars, the largest in the state's history and 13th in the nation, and the cash income per farm having reached $3,233, the highest on record, with a steady but slow increase in income from both crops and livestock in each year since 1949, as disclosed in the University News Letter.

But behind those figures, the state was not improving its relative position to other states in its agricultural development. In 1951, it had ranked 40th in cash income per farm, whereas in 1948, it had ranked 39th, and in 1949 and 1950, 40th. The increase in farm income in the state had therefore merely followed the national trend. The state continued to rank last among the 48 states in the percentage of cash farm income from the sale of livestock and livestock products, at 18.85 percent.

The News Letter had suggested that the state, therefore, could not be considered balanced in its agriculture. The piece indicates that there was no reason for the discrepancy in livestock production, as the state had many resources conducive to grazing. But the emphasis remained on the cash crops of tobacco and cotton, which, being seasonal, resulted in a large amount of farm labor being idle during long periods. It suggests that if the state were to lift itself to its proper position among the 48 states, having the largest farm population of any state, yet ranking 13th in total cash farm income and 40th in cash farm income per farm, it would need to place greater emphasis on year-round labor and fully use its idle lands to provide a balanced agricultural picture, which increased livestock production would fulfill.

"The Methodists Stand Firm" tells of drawing a parallel, during the recent quadrennial conference of the Methodist Church in San Francisco and its intent to streamline the church machinery, with that proposed by the Federal Government. The Methodists had used a study group, just as the Government had relied on the Hoover Commission to make recommendations at reorganization.

It suggests that while it might quarrel with some of the conference's decisions, such as opposition to universal military training and its overoptimistic expectations from the U.N., it had, with no isolationism showing, firmly stated a number of things which were worth repeating. After it expressed opposition to Communism, it stated that the best defense against Communism was "the elimination of economic conditions which foster poverty, hunger and disease, more adequate provision for both the physical and the spiritual needs of persons and all lands, [and] the abatement of racial and class discrimination." It condemned guilt by association, loyalty oaths and social rejection based on ideology.

The delegates had rejected the notion of subordinating the profit motive to the "creative cooperative spirit" because of its tendency to align the church in the public mind with socialism or Communism, despite Christianity being premised on "creative cooperative spirit".

Overall, it regards the Methodist conference as being on the right track and that many Christians could serve well the economic and political subdivisions of the world.

"How He Rose from Failure to Success" suggests that the President's formula for success was simple, to shake hands. That was evidenced in thousands of photographs taken during his Administration. Sometimes he used the "over-and-under" method, usually reserved for Congressional Medal of Honor recipients, his old Battery D artillery buddies, and fellow public servants from Missouri. Another method was the "let's go out and whomp Central High" technique, borrowed from basketball teams, usually reserved for the departure of dignitaries of Cabinet rank on foreign missions of major importance. He had used that method with General Marshall, General Eisenhower and Secretary of State Acheson.

It muses that when it came to running the Government, the President's right hand might sometimes not know what his left was doing, "but he really synchronizes them in the handshake."

The Congressional Quarterly provides advice from Congressman Walter Judd of Minnesota on how to write one's Congressman.

Drew Pearson discusses the oral arguments taking place this date before the Supreme Court in the steel case, ultimately turning on the question of the President's power to effect seizure of a vital industry in a national emergency, a power claimed by President Truman. Four previous Republican leaders had approved or engaged in pretty much the same conduct as President Truman had undertaken in the steel seizure. While the Supreme Court might avoid this issue by citing an 1866 precedent wherein Mississippi sought to enjoin President Andrew Johnson from engaging in Reconstruction in that state, the Court having ruled that no court had the power to enjoin the President, it would not, he posits, decide the fundamental issue regarding the President's power, which had been debated since the Founding.

Parenthetically, the precise question before Mississippi v. Johnson in 1866, as above cited, was more narrow than whether the Court had the power to enjoin the President, being instead, "[C]an the President be restrained by injunction from carrying into effect an act of Congress alleged to be unconstitutional?" The Court answered this question in the negative, saying: "The Congress is the legislative department of the government; the President is the executive department. Neither can be restrained in its action by the judicial department, though the acts of both, when performed, are, in proper cases, subject to its cognizance." Presumably, it was that language to which Mr. Pearson refers and on which the assistant Attorney General had improvidently relied in arguing the steel case before the U.S. District Court in Washington two weeks earlier, that the courts did not have the power to restrain the acts of either Congress or the President, a position from which the Justice Department, after urging from the President, himself, had backtracked in a letter to the District Court judge. The language in question was plainly pertinent only, in the context of the Mississippi case, to judicial restraint of the President from executing an act of Congress which was claimed to be unconstitutional, not, as in the steel case, the judicial power to restrain an affirmative act of the President based on his "inherent" Constitutional authority, without specific statutory authorization by Congress. The Administration was, however, also contending before the Supreme Court that it had authority to effect the seizure of the steel mills under the language of the Defense Production Act, passed in 1950 in response to the outbreak of the Korean War.

Mr. Pearson cites the four examples of Republicans essentially siding with the position taken by President Truman, starting with the founder of what became the Republican Party, Alexander Hamilton, having claimed that the President had just as much power as the King of England when he had ruled over the colonies. He said that the President had the power to make or declare war without the consent of Congress.

The second example was afforded by President John Adams who had conducted an undeclared naval war with France in 1798. He had recalled George Washington from retirement to assume command of the U.S. armed forces in preparation for the military operation, all without authorization from Congress and despite its bitter opposition. Thomas Jefferson, founder of the Democratic Party, had disagreed with both Mr. Hamilton and President Adams on these points. Yet, when he became President, he conducted an undeclared war on the Barbary pirates. President James Madison also ordered General Andrew Jackson to take over Florida without authorization by Congress.

The third example of a Republican was President Lincoln, with his issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation in the fall of 1862, declaring that all slaves held as private property in the states still in rebellion as of January 1, 1863 would be free. He had also set up military commissions to supersede the courts, had suspended the writ of habeas corpus and had forcibly disbanded the Maryland Legislature—all premised on the power to "provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions", as provided under Section 8 of Article I of the Constitution, defining the powers of Congress, not the President, whose powers are provided under Article II, but which President Lincoln saw as an inherent power pursuant to his role as commander in chief of the armed forces, including the militia when called by Congress into actual service of the United States.

The fourth Republican example was President Theodore Roosevelt, who believed that the President was the "steward" of the national welfare and was therefore empowered to take any action for the national safety not forbidden by the Constitution. Pursuant to this assumed power, he seized Panama without informing Congress, and then asked his Attorney General to write an advisory opinion upholding its legality. In 1902, President Roosevelt was confronted with a nationwide strike in the anthracite coal industry, and though there was no war on, believed it threatened the national welfare and so sent word to J. P. Morgan that if the Government proposals for settlement were not accepted, the President would order Federal troops to seize and operate the mines, whereupon Mr. Morgan was able to persuade the coal operators to reach agreement.

There had also been other Democrats who had taken action similar to that of President Truman, such as President Andrew Jackson who had, without Congressional approval, refused to recharter the Bank of the United States, and President Franklin Roosevelt, having ordered the seizure of strike-bound plants not only during the war, pursuant to the War Powers Act, but also prior to the war, the most notable of which having been the seizure of the North American Aviation plant in California in the fall of 1940 after Communist sympathizers called a strike. The President had also ordered the internment of more than 100,000 West Coast Japanese-Americans in 1942, justified by the supposed threat to national security, done without the specific approval of Congress, though later upheld by the Supreme Court in the Korematsu case, held permissible only under the "direst emergency and peril", as the aftermath of the attack on Pearl Harbor and the consequent declarations of war, successively, on Germany and Japan.

Eminent patent attorney Will Davis had remarked at a recent meeting of the Defense Mobilization Committee that it was the job of the Supreme Court to save the Constitution, while the job of the President was to save the country.

Marquis Childs begins by providing a quote from July 16, 1947 by Senator Estes Kefauver while he had been in the House, in which he had indicated that the growth of big business had led inexorably to the growth of big labor organizations, which in turn had required the establishment of big Government agencies to deal with them. He viewed it as a certain route to collectivism in the U.S. and thus to the disappearance of "economic liberties and political rights". He had made this statement in the wake of the veto of Taft-Hartley by the President and had warned that, while labor had grown, the greater threat still lay in big industry.

The Senator had made his name in 1950 and 1951 through the televised hearings on organized crime, but his continuing criticism of this process of big industry leading to big unions leading to big Government remained a theme on the campaign trail as he had won primary after primary thus far in 1952. He had, starting in 1945, sought to plug a loophole in the 1913 Clayton Anti-Trust Act, which had prevented monopolies from forming horizontally by mergers but not vertically, still allowing big corporations to buy out small businesses and thereby develop a monopoly in a given industry. He had also joined with Senators Russell Long and Paul Douglas to block persistent attempts to legalize the basing-point system, struck down by the Supreme Court, which allowed fixing of uniform prices for all plants in an industry, regardless of shipping costs based on varying distances to the market.

"Professional liberals" had joined others in viewing Senator Kefauver derisively as a somewhat comic individual in a coonskin cap, a position which, while understandable on the part of those who would naturally oppose his views, was not understandable from liberals. His views were entirely consistent with the New Deal and Fair Deal insofar as economic and labor policies.

He concludes that the reason for his success in the campaign might be attributed to the novelty of someone who was saying something from his mind and heart about the basic issue of power and its use and abuse in America in 1952.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop find that, after months of haggling over the Korean truce, the U.N. negotiators had, until recently, at last been convinced, with good reason, that the Communists had genuinely desired to end the fighting. All of the potential disagreements appeared ready to settle, the allies being willing to concede the issue of repairs to Communist airfields during the course of the armistice as they figured that the Communists would cheat about this point anyway, as well as the Communist nomination of Russia as a "neutral" nation for inspecting the armistice, there being little difference between Russia and Poland in that regard. The final issue in dispute, voluntary repatriation, appeared acceptable to the Communists.

But then Communist prisoners held by the U.N. overwhelmingly voted to reject, in effect, this compromise, based on the determination of 52,000 former combatants, out of the total 132,000 held, including three-fourths of the some 20,000 Chinese prisoners, that they did not wish to return either to Communist China or North Korea. Initially, the U.N. had believed that only a few thousand, perhaps, 2,500, would refuse to return home. The Communists now refused to accept the legitimacy of this polling within the allied prison camps, leading to the present stalemate again in negotiations.

A letter writer addresses the revaluation of property in the city and county and the hiring by the County Board of Commissioners and the City Council of outside experts to determine the revaluation. He suggests that there had been a lot of criticism regarding this use of outside experts but that the critics were the same people who, several years earlier, had advocated a state sales tax and likely were the same people who, recently, had been opposed to rent controls despite the housing shortage. He indicates that the city was growing rapidly and had to have services to match. There was also the issue of having to provide equal school facilities for blacks and whites to avoid integration. He indicates that, therefore, the revaluation, more realistically indicative of true property values for tax purposes, was appropriate.

A letter from an Army second lieutenant of Company C, 32nd Infantry Regiment, Seventh Division, in Korea, regards the letter writer who said that he detested Charlotte and so had moved to Greensboro, commenting: "So he left. I'm damn glad he left, too."

Well, you're gone, too. What's he to think?

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