The Charlotte News

Tuesday, July 1, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that the Senate the previous night had approved, 66 to 0, a 46.4 billion dollar budget for defense for the coming fiscal year, nearly five billion less than that requested by the President. The House had approved a 46.2 billion dollar budget, and the difference, primarily related to Air Force funding, would have to be worked out in conference.

The President said this date that the new economic controls law passed by Congress took a serious gamble with inflation and that, whereas he had asked for stronger controls, the Congress had gone in the other direction and enacted a law which would weaken the ability of the country to hold down prices and stabilize the economy. He said it opened the way for increases in rents for six million families and that housewives would have to pay higher prices on 20 percent of the market basket, including, in many areas, the price of milk. He also found the curtailment of the Wage Stabilization Board's authority to issue recommendations to be a weakening of effective settlement of labor disputes, without providing any substitute, creating a "dangerous gap in the mobilization program". The statement did not mention the provision of the bill requesting that the President resort to Taft-Hartley to end temporarily the steel strike.

Senator Tom Connally of Texas, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, said this date that the pacts setting up a new European army, including West Germany, were without parallel in history. He began Senate debate on ratification of the two agreements which would also end the Big Three occupation of West Germany. The Senator predicted the required two-thirds approval of the military pact without much trouble. He indicated that West Germany could not be admitted to NATO formally at this point because it took unanimous consent, which could not yet be obtained. The result of approval of the military pact, however, he indicated, was about the same thing.

British Prime Minister Winston Churchill told Commons this date that the body should not anger Americans during a presidential election year and that U.N. supreme commander General Mark Clark had not known that the Yalu River power plants were to be bombed the previous week until after Britain's defense minister had completed a battlefront tour of Korea, and so had been unable to advise him of the pending attacks. The Prime Minister was leading the debate on behalf of the Government against a Labor motion to censure the Government for not having been aware of the attacks. He praised Secretary of State Acheson for acknowledging regret that Britain had not been advised in advance of the bombings. The Conservative Government had just announced that it had chosen an unnamed senior British officer to be the deputy chief of staff in Tokyo to General Clark.

A series of three articles begins by Associated Press foreign news analyst William L. Ryan, the first indicating that the international game of "I spy" was being played around the world at present with life-and-death stakes, and that it was difficult to say who was winning. The weight of numbers appeared on the side of Communism, but perhaps, he indicates, the West made up the difference in quality. The atom bomb provided the challenge which had developed the largest and possibly the most successful network of spies the world had ever known, operating from Moscow. The Russians were short on technological knowledge but long on intrigue, as demonstrated by the spy revelations in Canada, England, Sweden and in the U.S. These spy operations had their beginnings around 1924 when Joseph Stalin first came to power as a dictator and spoke of building "socialism in one country", purging those who advocated a permanent world revolution, as he schemed and dreamed of world domination. Promising young Communists from abroad were brought to Moscow to be trained as secret police, the NKVD. Wherever the new Soviet Union had been recognized diplomatically, specially trained staffs were set up to work apart from the ambassadors, with the NKVD having its representative at each embassy.

Some 50,000 United Steelworkers Union members had resumed work at 31 small companies after successfully negotiating contracts, while the union's demands for settlement of the month-old strike continued to be rejected by the major producers. Union leaders continued to meet with other small companies across the country in secret sessions, the secrecy having been imposed by union president Philip Murray out of concern that the larger companies would pressure the smaller companies not to enter contracts.

In Houston, at the annual governors' conference, Governor James Byrnes of South Carolina, speaking at a press conference, scoffed at "sugar coated" civil rights platform planks at the forthcoming Democratic convention in Chicago and said that his state might vote for the Republican ticket in November were the Democratic ticket unacceptable. He said that Governor Adlai Stevenson of Illinois would not be acceptable because of his position on civil rights. Governor Stevenson had indicated the previous day that he favored allowing the individual states to enact their own employment practices acts but favored compulsory Federal legislation should the states fail to pass effective legislation. Governor Byrnes favored Senator Richard Russell of Georgia for the nomination. He said that the 1948 civil rights plank in the Democratic platform, which had endorsed the compulsory FEPC, anti-lynching and anti-poll tax legislation, was entirely unacceptable.

In short, despite having been appointed to the Supreme Court in 1941 by FDR, as Economic Stabilizer in 1942 and then Defense Mobilizer, effectively "assistant President", in 1943, and having been appointed Secretary of State by President Truman in mid-1945, Governor Byrnes had become an expedient little cracker in gamecock country.

By contrast, Michigan Governor G. Mennen Williams had expressed his strong support for the 1948 platform plank on civil rights and that labor would not be satisfied with anything less than the 1948 platform.

In Wilmington, Delaware, a Delaware delegate to the Republican convention announced that he was switching his previously pledged support of Senator Taft to General Eisenhower, the second Delaware delegate to do so within the previous twelve hours. The current Associated Press tally for the delegation showed six Eisenhower supporters, five Taft supporters and one undecided.

In Newark, a man from New York City was trying to hitch a ride near the Newark airport, when a sedan carrying three men stopped and one of the men asked the hitchhiker to show some identification before they would give him a ride, whereupon the man handed his wallet to the three men, at which point they removed seven dollars, returned the wallet and then sped away. The man reported the incident to the police.

The hitcher should get used to it, as the Republicans were about to regain control of two branches of Government for the first time since 1931.

On the editorial page, "It's Time for Mr. Truman To Act" tells of the President having urged on April 9, May 3, and again on June 11, on the latter occasion in his statement to a joint session of Congress, that the defense program was suffering for the lack of steel and that action was urgent therefore for resolving the steel dispute, the ongoing strike having begun June 2 in the wake of the Supreme Court decision holding the President's April 8 seizure of the industry unconstitutional without Congressional approval.

It ventures that since Congress had now expressed in the controls bill its suggestion that the President resort to Taft-Hartley's 80-day injunctive provision to end the strike temporarily, it was incumbent upon the President to do so. If the emergency had justified seizure of the steel industry, the emergency after four lost weeks of steel production justified the course recommended by Congress. It concludes that his failure to act "borders on criminal negligence".

That sounds like a line from "Seven Days in May"—and, in this context, is a little over the top and as downright silly as the hyperbole of which it accuses implicitly the President to have used in justifying the seizure and calling for urgent action by Congress to authorize seizure. Again, it neglects to inform that the United Steelworkers had already postponed the strike for 99 days, from January 1, when the prior contract expired, through April 8 at the time of the seizure, and that the Wage Stabilization Board had evaluated the dispute and issued its recommendations, the President therefore logically finding that to appoint a fact-finding board under Taft-Hartley to evaluate the dispute again would only be redundant and unfair to the workers. But when you have a President a-threatenin' to integrate the schools down heya, why, anything else he does is suspect.

"Equal Rights for TV and Radio" tells of television and radio being barred from the Supreme Court, Congress and some committee hearings, and that the supporters of Senator Taft wanted to exclude the electronic media from the hearings anent the disputed GOP convention delegates, which began this date.

It regards the issue as not simply being a matter of freedom of the press, but also including the right of privacy of those appearing at such hearings. It sympathizes with witnesses before Congressional committees who were unnerved by the noises and glare of the lights and cameras. British newspaper reporter Alistair Cooke, writing in the Manchester Guardian, had indicated that the Abilene, Kans., press conference held by General Eisenhower at the beginning of June had its intimacy between the General and his audience interrupted by the "continuous electronic hullabaloo kept up by the television, newsreel and radio people and the disturbing forked lightning of the photographers".

Television also brought the viewer into intimate contact with the subject in ways that the written stories and mere spoken word of radio could not enable. A person's "fine points and foibles" were "frankly portrayed by the candid camera". It finds that situation to be as it should, as public officials and candidates had a responsibility to the electorate outweighing their right of privacy.

It indicates that the "shenanigans" expected of members of Congress should their sessions be televised and broadcast might be offset by increased legislative efficiency after the camera showed rows of empty seats during important votes and the time-consuming process of non-electronic voting. It could result in stimulation of more interest by the public in the written news as well as that viewed on television. It thus concludes that the proponents of extended television and radio coverage had a valid case and that legislators considering the matter should be as susceptible to public pressure as on other matters.

"The Map Tells the Story" refers to a series on the page of national electoral maps for each of the presidential elections from 1920 through 1948, indicating that in 1920, 1924 and 1928, the South had been the bulwark of Democratic support, supplying the bulk of its electoral votes. That fact, plus a two-thirds rule for the Democratic nomination, had afforded the South a strong voice in the party. In 1932 and 1936, FDR had achieved electoral landslides in every part of the country, and maintained most of that strength in 1940 and 1944. President Truman, in 1948, had confounded the pundits who had determined right up to election day that he was going to lose, by losing only one state in the Far West, six in the Midwest and a handful in New England, as well as the loss of four Southern states to the Dixiecrat ticket of Governor Strom Thurmond.

If it turned out that the Democratic candidate or platform or both were unacceptable to the South in 1952, it urges, no good purpose would be served by further complaint by Southern Democrats, as the Democratic Party was a firmly entrenched national party and would not sacrifice its strength elsewhere by trying to curry favor with Southern voters. It concludes that in that situation, the South had only one alternative, to give its support to the Republicans, and reaffirms that General Eisenhower, who was popular in the South, could attract such voters, whereas Senator Taft had only Southern support within the small Republican enclaves which he controlled.

"Blue Reds" tells of the French Government cracking down on the Communist Party, having ordered the police to spray participants in any future demonstrations with a penetrating blue dye which they would find nearly impossible to remove. The piece wonders whether a "dyed-in-the-wool Red, well-sprayed," would turn purple or be mistaken for the old Irish Fascist Blue Shirts, or whether "Blue Star" and "New Blue Masses" might be added to the Communist vocabulary.

A piece from the Asheville Citizen, titled "P's, Q's and R's", indicates that the Greensboro Daily News had stated its consternation at the special causes and programs being promoted in the schools, taking up valuable time from the 30 classroom hours per week available for teaching traditional subjects. It had urged against inclusion in the curriculum of the public schools facts about alcohol abuse, as recommended at an education seminar conducted in Chapel Hill. The piece agrees and indicates that if the dangers of alcohol abuse were to be taught in the schools, then courses ought also to be included on use of tobacco, consumption of sugar candy, green apples and over-eating. It indicates that the home was the place for teaching such lessons.

Drew Pearson tells of the Republicans favoring a weak price controls bill so that if the President were to veto it, he would get the blame for lack of controls, and if he were not to veto it, it would be impossible to enforce and so he would also get the blame, inuring to the benefit of Republicans in the fall elections. The facts were that prices were at an all-time high, the dumping of a large amount of Government securities on the market would lead to more inflation, business was experiencing a new upturn after being in the semi-doldrums for some time, and defense orders were reaching a peak. Economic controls amid those factors would create the greatest national savings.

Mr. Pearson notes that though Republicans were to blame for the present impasse on strong controls, the Administration had wasted precious time immediately after the start of the Korean War in not taking advantage of price control authorization made available under the Defense Production Act passed by Congress in September, 1950.

The House Interstate & Foreign Commerce Committee had voted recently, 14 to 8, to hand to Pan American Airways essentially a 17 million dollar per year subsidy. Rather than basing airmail pay on cost plus a reasonable profit, the proposed bill assumed inflated costs of carrying the mail, resulting in the subsidy. Pan Am's publicity experts had claimed that the airlines were entitled to the subsidy because of the need to supply defense features which the airlines had been asked by the Government to add to 331 planes. But the truth was that the defense features were paid by the Air Force, and did not come out of the subsidy.

Mr. Pearson's exposé of the matter had slowed the Committee down by a few weeks in passing it, and had shifted seven members' votes against the bill, but ultimately, it had passed. He provides the Committee membership and their votes. Among those voting against the bill was Representative Homer Thornberry of Texas, future Supreme Court nominee in 1968 of President Lyndon Johnson, a nomination ultimately which had to be withdrawn after the elevation of Justice Abe Fortas to Chief was filibustered to death by the Republicans and Southern Democrats.

He indicates that no matter how much the Committee sought to disguise what they had done for the purpose of public relations, they knew that they were voting against the taxpayers' interest and for Pan Am. He warns that they might learn in November that the taxpayers had more votes than Pan Am.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop tell of Senator Taft's biggest tantrum to date having been touched off the previous week by Senator Irving Ives of New York declaring that if Senator Taft were to become the Republican nominee, Senator Ives did not want to run for re-election as he found his prospects in that event untenable. When asked about the matter at a press conference, Senator Taft denounced Senator Ives, along with Governor Dewey and Dr. George Gallup for a full 30 minutes, proclaiming the latter to be a propagandist for General Eisenhower and that the statement by Senator Ives had been mere propaganda promoted by Governor Dewey, not reflective of Senator Ives's true opinion.

The Alsops indicate that Senator Ives and Governor Dewey, while cordial, were not in political lockstep and there was no propaganda effort by the Governor on behalf of the Senator. The fact was that Senator Ives simply did not want to run if Senator Taft was the nominee. He could return to the private sector in a lucrative position and saw no need to risk personal capital and effort in a futile campaign. He believed that the Democrats would vote solidly against Senator Taft, which in New York would bring down the entire Republican ticket, whereas many dissatisfied Democrats would vote for General Eisenhower. Without Democrats and independents, he knew that the Republicans had no chance in November.

At least 90 percent of Senator Taft's support came from the Republican states and the "Southern rotten boroughs", whereas the Republicans in the swing states nearly unanimously opposed the Taft candidacy.

Robert C. Ruark, still fishing in New Brunswick, Canada, tells of catching his first salmon, a 20-pounder, which actually weighed either 18 or 19 pounds, as he had worn a lot of weight off the fish trying to sling it into the canoe.

He tells of fishermen talking in terms of "killing" salmon, rather than catching them, as it was such an ordeal to catch one. He also finds the salmon liar to be the greatest sporting liar he had ever met, outdoing the quail liar, the girl liar, the liquor liar and the horse playing liar.

"There is a peculiar viciousness about salmon fishing that is most appealing. People who catch salmon delight in burning the feet and soul of people who do not catch salmon. Poor Mr. Trullinger [the resident professional fish-and-game reporter who was the only member of the party failing to catch a fish on the first day] has not suffered so exquisitely since somebody put a live yearling bear in bed with him, in a spirit of camaraderie."

Just keep his mind on salmon and off politics. Then he can go join Ike and Dick on their fishing trip after the convention. Maybe that was Adlai's biggest deficiency, that he neither fished nor played golf or even bowled, just wore holes in the soles of his shoes.

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