The Charlotte News

Thursday, June 5, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that in Abilene, Kans., General Eisenhower had stated this date at a press conference that the primary issue of the campaign was "real peace and security in the world". He said that he hoped that the country could get out from under "the umbrella of fear and doubt and hysteria" which he indicated now covered it. He said that he intended to "speak out as frankly" as he knew how on the issues of the day, indicating that he had not the slightest idea whether he could defeat Senator Taft for the Republican presidential nomination. He said that he would consult with General MacArthur on Asiatic policies were he to become President. He also stated that there was no political connection with the President or the Administration which would prevent him from attacking the Democratic record.

On particular issues, he stated that he believed that the states primarily should handle the question of fair employment practices and education, and that agriculture should not be permitted to suffer, but did not at present know the exact measure of price supports which should be given by the Federal Government. He said that he did not believe that people could be compelled to work by legislation and that there had to be other means of solving labor problems. He indicated that labor could not prosper unless the farmers prospered, and that the farmer could not prosper without labor being prosperous. He suggested that they had to work on the matter "like dogs". He also stated that the Truman Administration had to take responsibility for the loss of China to the Communists and that he supported a February 6, 1950 declaration by Senate Republicans regarding foreign and domestic policies. He said that he supported the Administration's foreign policy insofar as it concerned safeguarding of Western Europe against Communism, but had not been part of any other aspects of the Administration foreign policy.

A crowd estimated at 25,000 persons had been present in Abilene the previous day for the celebration of the homecoming for the General, which had included a parade of floats illustrating his life. Between 5,000 and 6,000 persons had turned out in Eisenhower Park during a rainstorm the prior evening to hear his 30-minute speech, delivered on the site of the proposed Eisenhower museum.

The House this date passed the compromise appropriations bill to fund the money to meet overdue payrolls for about 500,000 postal workers. The bill would now go to the Senate where it was expected to receive prompt approval before being sent to the President. The passage followed refusal by the House to eliminate the Senate-voted money to build two detention camps on the Mexican border to house illegal Mexican workers, to finance the return of those workers to Mexico, and to employ additional immigration officers on the border.

Where is the money for the wall? Don't we need that? We need a double-secret wall, with a password, and an invisible, electrified force field, with machineguns and machetes which pop out of nowhere to surprise the wetbacks, and camera-controlled giant robotic pluckers to pick them up and deposit them right back where they came from. Get your mind around it.

Future Democratic presidential candidate, to be elected to the Senate in 1952, Congressman Henry Jackson of Washington, a member of the joint Atomic Energy Committee of Congress, said this date that it was possible Russia might go ahead of the U.S. in the race to develop hydrogen bomb supremacy, as Russia was making an all-out effort in that regard while the U.S. had adopted a "half-way program". He urged that Congress create a joint committee to determine why the country had lagged behind so badly in military firepower. He said that the files of the Committee showed that the U.S. had not been planning to make as many atomic and hydrogen weapons as it was capable of producing, and that the 3.2 billion dollar expansion of the atomic program recently requested by the President was only a "half-way solution to an all-out challenge". He said that a complete program would cost about seven billion dollars over a period of several years and that it made no sense to pay out each year tens of billions of dollars for conventional weapons while stinting on the cheapest and best weapon the country had. He said that the time was coming when a single hydrogen weapon used tactically could substitute for hundreds of blockbuster bombs, when a nuclear-powered submarine could replace several conventional underseas craft, and when an atomic depth charge could retire scores of the depth bombs used during World War II.

The Army issued a draft call for 29,000 men in August for replacements and to maintain authorized strength, while the Marines, Air Force and Navy did not plan any draft calls for that month. The August quota would raise to 983,430 the total men drafted by all of the services since September, 1950, in the wake of the start of the Korean War, of which 902,000 had gone to the Army and 81,430 to the Marines.

The House voted overwhelmingly this date in favor of the new G.I. Bill of Rights for veterans discharged from the armed forces after fighting had begun in Korea. Only one Congressman dissented, James Devereux of Maryland, a former commander of the Marine garrison on Wake Island. He told reporters that his objection was to the way the measure had been considered by the House, not being subject to amendment.

Top officials of the steel industry and the United Steelworkers Union, including U.S. Steel president Benjamin Fairless and United Steelworkers president Philip Murray, met in conference this date, with the White House urging a quick settlement of the nationwide strike. The three-person teams met for an hour and a half this date and then recessed for lunch. A spokesman said that they could not comment on the talks. The meeting was taking place in the Executive Office Building across the way from the White House. Presidential assistant John R. Steelman indicated that he was not taking part in the talks but would be available to either side if needed. About 750,000 workers had been idled by the strike, which had started the prior Monday following the Supreme Court's decision holding the President's seizure of the steel industry unconstitutional. Of those off the job, 650,000 were steelworkers and another hundred thousand were in coal mines, railroads, shipping and docks which served the steel industry.

The Senate was considering the proposal of Senator Burnet Maybank of South Carolina to allow the President the power of seizure of vital industries necessary for national defense when a strike was threatened.

The President said this date at his weekly press conference that he would attend the Democratic national convention, but only after it had chosen the nominee, stating again that he would not be that person. He said that he would like to attend the whole convention but did not wish to create a disturbance. He commented, in response to a question regarding some Republicans having stated that he was involved in a "devious plot" to try to obtain the nomination for himself, that the charge was false and usually the product of "warped minds". He said that it was up to the people to decide whether General Eisenhower was right in his speech the previous day when he said that the Democrats had been in power too long. He declined further comment on the General's speech, indicating that he was not at all interested in the Republican pre-convention race. He said that the Republican quarrels among themselves pleased him but that he was not going to get mixed up in them. He also stated that he did not expect to send Congress any legislation dealing with the steel strike and would not comment on the possibility of invoking the 80-day injunction provision of Taft-Hartley. He said that he had no comment and never would, regarding the Supreme Court's ruling in the steel seizure case. He also indicated that he did not expect war to erupt in Europe during the summer and if he thought otherwise, would not allow his daughter and her friend to go through with their proposed European tour. He further stated, in response to questions, that his visit to the Rhode Island farm of former Attorney General J. Howard McGrath, who had been fired by him two months earlier, had no political implications and was purely a social occasion.

The previous Sunday, Senator Taft had indicated that a steady deterioration of American air strength had begun while General Eisenhower had been chief of staff, prompting the General to reply at a press conference on Tuesday that he had always favored a strong Air Force and expected air power to be dominant in any future war, but that he did not believe that the foot soldier would ever be eliminated as a primary force in war. The President had refused comment on this matter, indicating that he did not anticipate air power being a source of controversy between Democrats and Republicans.

Senator Taft appeared to have edged out General Eisenhower in South Dakota's Tuesday primary to capture the 14 delegates to the Republican convention, subject to an official canvass of the results. The Senator held a 590-vote lead with all save ten precincts reporting, and not enough votes remaining to change the outcome. It was the tightest race in the state since 1936 when former Kansas Governor Alf Landon, the eventual GOP nominee, had won the primary over Senator William Borah of Idaho by 257 votes. The Senator had made his best showing in the rural areas of the state, while the General had made his largest gains in the cities, especially in Aberdeen and Sioux Falls, where the newspapers had endorsed him, also achieving surprising strength in the ranch areas west of the Missouri River.

In Raleigh, Governor Kerr Scott fired Col. L. C. Rosser, commissioner of the State Motor Vehicles Department, in which position he had served since June, 1947, appointed by Governor Scott's predecessor, Governor Gregg Cherry, and reappointed by Governor Scott at the beginning of his term in 1949. It was the second dismissal during the week by the Governor. As with the other dismissed person, Dr. T. C. Johnson, paroles commissioner, Col. Rosser had supported William B. Umstead in the gubernatorial campaign, whereas the Governor had endorsed the opponent, Hubert Olive, beaten in the previous Saturday's primary.

Also in Raleigh, at Central Prison, an uprising had occurred the previous day, in which 150 inmates had held ten prison employees as hostages, using them to bargain for prison reform. The hostages had been released the previous evening and the situation at the prison was reported to be peaceful this date. Prison officials stated that a guard would be suspended pending an investigation of prisoner charges that he had mistreated them. An investigation was also planned regarding their complaints that they had been served bad food. The prisoners had told journalists that the guard in question had refused to permit a prisoner who had complained of a pain in his side to receive medical treatment, the prisoner later that day having undergone surgery for appendicitis. They also charged that when they were placed in solitary confinement, the same guard had fed them only "nine beans" when they were supposed to have a heaping spoonful. (Isn't there a song? A spoonful of beans makes the medicine go down? How about "nine beans on the wall"?) It was the fifth violent incident regarding the prison during the previous month. Two guards had been fired within the previous few days, one for smuggling a drug, "yellowjacket", to prisoners, and the other for reporting to work drunk. Three or four guards had quit in the previous week because of the recent violence.

On the editorial page, "Citizen Eisenhower Speaks Out" indicates that General Eisenhower had launched the D-Day invasion eight years earlier under stormy clouds, and the previous day had initiated his campaign for the presidency against the backdrop of wind, thunder and rain sweeping over Abilene, Kans., during his 30-minute address. The thunderstorm had resulted in the audience being sparse, which had interrupted the train of thought for the audience watching the speech on television. It finds, however, that it did not detract from the "stirring words" coming from the General.

He had enunciated solid Republican doctrine and had done so more convincingly and eloquently than his party colleagues had been able to do. He showed no fear, defeatism or querulousness, but, to the contrary, exhibited a "refreshing overtone of confidence in the basic faith, determination and solidarity of the American nation and the American philosophy of government."

It posits that if the General was a "me-tooer"—a label which had been applied to Governor Dewey in his 1944 and 1948 campaigns for essentially adopting the same stands as the Democrats, only promising to do it more efficiently—, then the term needed redefining. The General had criticized the hostility between economic classes nurtured for the previous 20 years and called for goodwill and confidence in labor-management relations. He further criticized inflation and denounced excessive taxation, as well the gradual absorption by the central government of functions which belonged traditionally to local communities and individuals. He also decried corruption in government and suggested that citizen apathy regarding public affairs, beginning at the local level, lay at its root.

It finds that in his section of the speech on foreign policy, he exhibited the greatest understanding and confidence, especially with regard to the threat of Communism and the effort to contain it, clarity and judgment which the people were seeking in their next president.

It suggests that as a military man, he had displayed a deep understanding of the economic problems posed by defense preparedness, indicating that a bankrupt country would mean the loss of all held dear, leaving much of the world nearly powerless before the Communist threat.

He had also indicated that he believed that one party had been in power too long, with the inevitable consequence of graft and incompetence at high levels. That statement had shown that he was willing to take on his former bosses, Presidents Roosevelt and Truman.

It indicates that this date he would face a more acid test, as he would field questions from some 300 journalists who would seek to pin him down on details regarding his intended program and political philosophy. It suggests that if he came through that ordeal as well as he had the previous day's address, his homecoming would be an unqualified success.

Actually, of course, he read the entire speech, as he was wont to do throughout his eight-year political life, a penchant which, in an earlier time of radio and stump speeches, was not so noticeable to the broad mass audience, but which became painfully evident in the age of close-up television. The real questions, therefore, were whether and to what extent he wrote the speech and, if not, who did. Mr. Dulles? Senator Lodge? Governor Dewey? Others? They had five months to prepare it, while Senator Taft had to bumble along on the trail, campaigning against a spectral presence.

The entire 1952 campaign, in both parties, was one of the strangest in American history, matched in recently previous times only by those of 1940 and 1944, both of which, especially the latter, were necessarily truncated because of the war.

By November, did anyone really know for whom they were voting, or were they just filling out ballots in protest of the status quo? tired of the same old thing, even if the same old thing had brought plentiful prosperity, compared to what had preceded under Republican rule. Was the bulk of the country, by this point, seven years after the war, simply spoiled and adrift in expectation of total peace and total prosperity, not yet realized? Were the Democrats not a victim of their own success? such that people were wondering what they had done for them lately, only seeing the headlines of scandal, graft, Communists in government, the need for loyalty tests, too much inflation, too high taxes, and more war, even if against the Communists and the defense budget was the reason for the inflation and taxes, reasonably restrained through Government controls. In any event, the increasingly exploitative anti-Democratic Nixon-McCarthy atmosphere, which had been ably and gradually stirred up since 1947, had worked well to confuse a large portion of the masses by 1952.

"Absenteeism on the Potomac" suggests that the next time the reader heard about a Congressman sounding off about inefficiency or bungling in the executive branch, he should be reminded that his own house was not in order. The previous day, for the third straight day, the House had been unable to transact business because of absenteeism. A vote was pending on a bill to release 970 million dollars in funds to pay overdue wages to thousands of postal and other Federal employees. But with only 50 members on hand, and a quorum requiring 217, no business could occur.

It indicates that many of the absent Congressmen were at home campaigning, but no one knew where the others were.

Another contributing factor was that the chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Kenneth McKellar of Tennessee, was too decrepit to attend committee hearings regularly and yet forbade anyone to take his place. The House and Senate had passed different versions of the bill and it had become hung up in conference. Now that the differences had finally been ironed out, the House did not have sufficient members present to pass on it.

It concludes that the Supreme Court, in the steel seizure case, had reminded the nation the prior Monday that the legislative power resided solely with the Congress, and was not shared with the executive branch. It suggests that perhaps a constitutional amendment requiring that members of Congress remain on the job would help them attend to their duties.

"Dairy Industry Is Big Business" tells of it being Dairy Month and so an appropriate time to muse about the importance of dairy products in the state and their potential for the future. It was big business in Mecklenburg County, with over 7,000 milk cows which consumed some 1.5 million dollars worth of food each year while producing 3.1 million dollars worth of milk at farm prices. Ten Charlotte dairies had done over six million dollars in milk business the previous year, plus another six million in ice cream.

Across the state, in 1949, dairy products represented nearly 37 million dollars of the 146 million dollars realized by farmers for livestock products. The director of the Extension Service at N.C. State, however, believed it was not large enough and told a Farm & Home Week audience a few weeks earlier that the state produced only two-thirds as much milk as it needed. A recent University News Letter revealed that the state stood last among all of the states in the percentage of farm income from livestock and livestock products.

It posits that the state had the resources for large-scale dairying, which would help to balance the state's agriculture and bring new revenue to farmers.

"The World Bank Helps the Entrepreneur" tells of the World Bank having come up with a sound device for encouraging private investment abroad, suggesting the institution of an international finance corporation to provide marginal capital for projects undersubscribed by private groups, with the bank not controlling or managing the project, and which would survive or not on the basis of its economic merits and management.

Based on past performance, it was unlikely that the bank would finance high-risk projects, and, unlike most international organizations, it turned a profit, with a net income of over 12 million dollars during the last two quarters of 1951 and the first quarter of 1952, raising its general reserve to 54 million dollars. It had made loan commitments of over 1.3 billion dollars to 27 countries, of which more than 823 million had been disbursed. It concludes that the bank's proposal could help enterprising investors who were willing to take a risk in investing abroad but needed a little more cash.

Drew Pearson suggests that political enemies of General Eisenhower might try to make something of the fact that the first political speech he had ever made in his life had been in Abilene, Kansas, in 1909, when he was a Democrat, and that the second political speech of his life had also been in Abilene the previous day, as a Republican. The first occasion had been when he was 19, speaking at a Jackson Day dinner. His father had been a Democrat and young Mr. Eisenhower had been selected to be the Democratic representative of the younger generation. He then entered West Point a few months later, and so had never made political speeches in the interim. In that earlier speech, he had indicated that after voting a straight ticket for several elections, the voters seldom changed from one side to the other. Mr. Pearson suggests that the statement would be used by Congressman Carroll Reece, Senator Taft's campaign manager for the South, to suggest that the General had been too close to Democrats through his life and therefore lacked the ability to take off the gloves against them.

Such tactics, however, neglected the fact that to win, the Republicans had to have a substantial number of Democrats and independents voting for their candidate, and a candidate who had Democratic leanings in the past might be more adept at wooing such voters.

In addition, the 1909 speech had been filled with references to the division inside the Republican Party, which by 1912, had developed into a genuine schism between the forces supporting then-President William Howard Taft and those backing the Bull Moose Party of former President Theodore Roosevelt, enabling Woodrow Wilson to win the election. In 1952, suggests Mr. Pearson, a fight over which delegations would be seated from Texas, Louisiana and South Carolina, split between Taft supporters and Eisenhower supporters, was certain to erupt at the convention the following month.

The young Mr. Eisenhower had also said in 1909 that he intended to vote for the Democrats in the next election because he believed they needed him and that the Republicans did not, indicating that it was a natural tendency to side with the underdog.

Mr. Pearson concludes by indicating that the Abilene News had stated in 1909 that young Mr. Eisenhower had carried himself nicely and the speech had been well-received.

Raymond Moley, in the fourth in his series of 12 articles abstracted from his 1952 book, How To Keep Our Liberty: A Program for Political Action, tells of the "state of many-welfares" becoming a mechanism for taking from those too weak to resist and giving to those strong enough to control. The masters in such a state made only promises of material benefits, neglecting national unity, mutual forbearance, and common patriotism. Instead of promoting the general welfare, they promoted alliances of powerful groups, in endless conflict with other groups. "The state becomes a vending machine where votes are inserted and money pours out."

Paraphrasing Abraham Lincoln, he states, "Perhaps government can subsidize some of the people all the time, possibly all the people some of the time, but it positively cannot subsidize all the people all the time."

The payments by Federal, state and local governments for direct relief, including unemployment insurance, pensions and other expenses, including military pensions, had been a little over a billion dollars in 1930, whereas it had risen to 14.3 billion in 1950. Prior to the Korean War, the President's Council of Economic Advisers had estimated that the cost of the Administration's social insurance program, when fully achieved, would be 25 billion dollars annually, which was a conservative estimate. It had been estimated that special taxes on payrolls alone for old age medical care, unemployment, workmen's compensation and sickness insurance, would reach 23 percent within a few years, costs which would be passed on in the form of inflation in the prices of manufactured products.

He indicates that the response of government was to redistribute income, but that redistribution, he posits, could not meet the costs of the plans presently proposed by the Administration. He provides figures to bolster his premise. But in the end, nothing was created and less, in fact, was produced than previously, because incentives to work longer hours and more years and to work more efficiently and risk money in new enterprises would be gone.

He indicates that John Jewkes, a brilliant British economist, stated the conclusion in his book, Ordeal by Planning: "The modern planning movement sets out, with good will and noble intentions, to control things and invariably ends up by controlling men."

Dr. Moley finds that planning required making people work where the planners decided they should work and doing what the planners decided they must do, eliminating the consumer's freedom of choice, or otherwise the planner could not plan. And a planned economy could not be operated by a parliamentary body. He indicates that Mr. Jewkes had pointed out that Prime Minister Clement Attlee had admitted in 1947 that 17 British Ministries had power to authorize inspections involving the entry of private homes and premises without a search warrant. Dr. Moley suggests that in the end, freedom of speech would fall victim of this atrophy because there was nothing left to be determined by public opinion.

He posits that at least four of the initial assumptions of statism would lead to materialism, domestic tensions, envy and hatred, those being that the basic purpose of the state was to supply the individual with more material means of life, that political power was to be attained by the promise of those benefits, that political power was further assured by creating envy and hatred among social groups, and that since the national government was to be the source of the benefits, the loyalty of the individual had to be to that source, rather than to his immediate neighbors and local institutions. He finds that those results had become more evident in recent years.

During the previous four or five years, as the size and power of the Federal political machine had grown, shady practices had developed in high places. He suggests that corruption would appear wherever money accumulated and responsibility for it was difficult to pin down. Such evils and their revelation had a corrosive effect down the line in the lives of private citizens. He finds that those changes in the moral climate were the result primarily of the materialistic postulates of statism.

We feel that we are reading some text from a treatise on our syllabus in our old sociology of conflicts course, way back when, either that or listening again to parts of General Eisenhower's opening speech in Abilene the previous evening. That's okay… If the old fallacious postulate, "after this, because of this", ticks your theoretical clock, so be it.

Joseph Alsop, writing from Atlanta, having already dealt with the stealing of the Texas delegation by supporters of Senator Taft from the majority delegates supporting General Eisenhower, and the similarly effected grab in Louisiana, now looks at Southern Republican politics from the vantage point of Georgia, noting that in that state, in 1896, Mark Hanna had introduced the forces of exploitation, similar to those being employed by a fellow Ohioan, Senator Taft. Mr. Hanna had gone to Thomasville for his health, and, meanwhile, held court for Southern Republican leaders, promising jobs and generous payments from the Hanna slush fund, thereby producing a solid bloc of Southern delegates for the candidacy of William McKinley, the Southerners then going to the convention and delivering the nomination to the future President.

Since that time, the "phony official leaders of the Southern Republicans, with their phony organizations and their obedient herds of phony delegates", had remained the "useful props and allies" of the party's Old Guard.

A highly respected Atlanta lawyer, Elbert Tuttle, had brought Republicanism from Hawaii to Georgia and, along with state chairman, Roscoe Tucker, had been able to swing the Georgia delegation to Governor Dewey in 1948. In a convention held in Atlanta the previous Saturday, the two men had again been able to obtain 15 of Georgia's 17 delegates for General Eisenhower. Notwithstanding the fact that the national committeeman, Harry Sommers, was a Taft delegate and strong Taft supporter, he took the view that the 15 Eisenhower delegates were legitimately chosen by majority vote and intended to fight for their being seated at the national convention.

There was a pro-Taft delegation from Georgia, sponsored by Roy Foster of Wadley, but masterminded by entrepreneur, Roscoe Pickett, Jr., at least one of those pro-Taft delegates being on the state payroll and Mr. Pickett having been a law school classmate of Governor Herman Talmadge, as well employed by the State under him. His delegation had been described as "Talmadge Republicans", though the Governor was a Democrat.

Former RNC chairman, Congressman Carroll Reece, who was Senator Taft's representative on the ground in the South, had covertly encouraged these pro-Taft delegates and had promised Mr. Sommers that the Taft forces at Chicago would not recognize the pro-Taft group in Georgia. But the fact that it existed was likely to be used to cover up the thefts which had occurred in Louisiana and Texas. The effort would be made to equate the pro-Taft delegations from Texas and Louisiana with the pro-Eisenhower delegation from Georgia, so that all could be acclaimed as "real Republicans", that is representative of the official organization Republicans. They would attempt to present themselves as being fair-minded by seating the Eisenhower delegation from Georgia.

That fact could not obscure that the Georgia Republican organization had been reformed from within by Mr. Tuttle and his cohorts, whom Ralph McGill of the Atlanta Constitution had called first-class political leaders. That organization had also turned against the Old Guard, and Mr. McGill and others thought that if General Eisenhower were nominated, these men would have a chance to construct a real Republican Party in Georgia.

The efforts to reform the organizations in Louisiana and Texas, however, had been frustrated by the fraud which Mr. Alsop had previously described. He suggests that if those frauds were not punished, the Republicans would miss their great chance in 1952 to build real Republican parties in those states, and that in countenancing those frauds, Senator Taft's managers were not only behaving as desperate men but were also jeopardizing their own party's future.

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