The Charlotte News

Tuesday, February 3, 1953


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports, via John Randolph, that allied troops this date killed an estimated 300 Chinese Communist troops, supported by tanks and artillery, as they raided a hill east of Kaesong on the frozen western front. North Korean troops launched a battalion-sized attack against a promontory northeast of the "Punchbowl", supported by artillery and mortar fire, with the enemy reaching within 40 yards of the main South Korean defenses in below-zero cold. Within an hour, a South Korean counterattack, supported by allied artillery, repulsed the attackers.

Lt. General Maxwell Taylor arrived in Korea for conferences prior to conducting a personal survey of the Eighth Army, of which he would shortly assume command, replacing retiring General James Van Fleet within a few days.

In Washington, Army chief of staff General J. Lawton Collins told Congress this date that "Operation Smack" had been a legitimate military maneuver, but that the Army accepted "a share of the responsibility" for the reaction, including negative statements by several members of Congress, who had viewed it as a publicity ploy presented for the sake of visiting brass and press. He said that the "eager beaver" who had assembled the operational plans for the January 25 combat raid in North Korea had placed them under a cover bearing the Seventh Division insignia, which he said was a mistake for which the Army accepted responsibility.

In London, British Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden said this date that Britain believed that President Eisenhower's decision on Formosa, removing the U.S. Seventh Fleet from its protection, would have "unfortunate political repercussions without compensating military advantages." He informed Commons that he had previously brought those points to the attention of visiting Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, and had indicated that he hoped that the U.S. did not have the intention of allowing its neutralization policy with respect to Formosa to end. He said that the British would suspend judgment as to what action might follow the decision of the President. Secretary Dulles arrived in London this date from Paris, to begin talks with British officials on Western European unity and the sloth in putting together the unified European army.

Senator Taft, Senate Majority Leader, predicted speedy approval of President Eisenhower's plan to repudiate "secret agreements" made with Russia which had, according to the State of the Union, resulted in "enslavement" of any peoples, presumably in reference to the Roosevelt Administration's agreement at Yalta in February, 1945. A resolution was presented in the House this date by a Republican Congressman to nullify the Yalta Agreement, which, according to the resolution, "gave Stalin a seemingly legal stranglehold on his conquests" and violated the rights of Poland and China. Senator Richard Russell of Georgia said that the resolution would have tremendous propaganda value and that he would support it but that he did not believe it would cause the Russians to remove their forces from Port Arthur in mainland China.

The President's decision to end all wage and price controls as of April 30 resulted in the dismissal of 1,700 employees from the Wage Stabilization Board and 310 workers of the Salary Stabilization Board, effective March 5. Skeletal staffs would remain until the April 30 end date. The Office of Price Stabilization, which had already laid off some 8,000 of its 12,200 workers during the previous seven months, was expected to accelerate layoffs.

Dwight Avis, chief alcohol tax collector, testified to House investigators this date that politics had been responsible for inefficiency and trouble at the agency, both in appointments and in handling cases. Mr. Avis had become head of the Alcohol Tax Division of the IRB in the fall of 1951 when the Bureau was already under investigation by a House Ways & Means subcommittee. He said that there was an old saying at the unit that "alcohol and politics don't mix."

White House press secretary James Hagerty reported that telegrams received thus far on the President's State of the Union the previous day had been encouraging.

In the Netherlands, some 50,000 people were in need of new homes following flooding, which included England and Belgium. In all three countries, the death toll had reached 1,527, with 991 in Holland, 514 in England, and 22 in Belgium. The final death toll was believed possibly to surpass 2,000. Among the dead in England were 11 Americans, with seven others missing and presumed dead, most of whom were Air Force men and their wives and children stationed on England's east coast. The waters were slowly receding in Britain, but in Holland, new high tides threatened to raise the waters even further inland than the already reported 40 miles, forcing the evacuation of two additional villages.

Seven of the thirteen second-level Communist Party leaders were sentenced in a New York Federal Court this date to three years in prison, following their convictions under the Smith Act, and were fined $6,000 each. Five other defendants were sentenced to two years in prison and $4,000 fines each, with the remaining defendant receiving a year and a fine of $2,000. The maximum sentence was five years and a $10,000 fine.

In Omaha, Neb., a local physician, 75, and his wife, 87, had been shot and killed at their home this date, and the State Safety Patrol reported a few hours later the arrest of a man at North Platte in connection with the shootings, after the doctor's car, believed used in the getaway, was identified and stopped. The occupant was in possession of two guns, an automatic pistol and a revolver. A housekeeper at the residence had remained behind her bedroom door while the shootings took place.

In Raleigh, the State House this date received legislation to increase the number of resident Superior Court Judges in the State from 21 to 27. A State Senator from Mecklenburg County reported to the newspaper that he had decided to act independently of the Mecklenburg House delegation regarding proposed local bills, a prerogative granted to Senators by the State Constitution. During the 1951 General Assembly biennial session, the delegation had met with the State Senator and taken a vote on local bills, with majority rule being the determining factor, but the State Senator said that he had decided to return to the system used by the former Senator, Joe Blythe. The so-called "unit rule" system had only been employed in 1951. The immediate predecessor State Senator, who had served in the 1951 Assembly, said that he did not understand what the new State Senator meant, as he had served in the State House during Mr. Blythe's terms in 1943 and 1945, and Mr. Blythe had explained to him that in 1943, the delegation had followed the majority rule, which had worked well in the past.

Ralph Gibson of The News tells of Charlotte area Congressman Charles Jonas, elected the previous November to the Congress as a Republican, had been forced into a controversy over Federal jobs patronage between Eisenhower and Taft supporters prior to the convention the previous July. He said that he believed the split in the North Carolina Republican Party was exaggerated on the issue, but that there were indications that the leaders of the two opposing factions were taking their problems to the national level.

In Hollywood, a plastic surgeon disclosed that any woman could become a Jane Russell through science, with plastic inserts to her breasts. He said that he had performed the operation on 25 women, some of whom were well known to movie fans. He claimed that it would not produce irritation to cells, the major cause of cancer. He also said that the spongy plastic substance, silicone, could be used to build up hollow cheeks or chinless chins.

But can it be used to replace the spines of spineless Republicans in 2020? Send donations for research to the Spineless Republicans CREEP Fund, 2020 Trump Plaza on the Ukrainian-Russian Mall, Washington, D.C., c/o of the Watergate.

On the editorial page, "The State of the Union" summarizes the message the previous day by the President. As we referenced both the audio and text yesterday, you can go back and read it on your own or read below the summary impression of James Marlow.

The piece indicates that its high hopes for the Administration had been given a boost by the "forthrightness, courage, decisiveness and determination that rang from virtually every phrase" of the message.

Candidly, we found the message pretty pedestrian and boring, in both its words and delivery. But, it was quite a lot better and more salutary than that being spewed by the liar-in-chief yesterday in 2020. We do not blame one bit Speaker Nancy Pelosi for ripping the text of the speech in half at the end of the delivery as a symbolic gesture of its dishonest content. She should have stomped and spit on it for good measure. Actually, we find it undue deference to the swine in the White House that any Democrats even showed up to hear more of the same old lies.

The saving grace is that, based on the 2016 election result, the Democrats really do not have to woo the Trumpies, who are basically a subclass of about 30 percent of the electorate, uneducated phonies, professing to be "patriots" and "Christians", actually just uninformed idiots, essentially uneducable. Let them stew in their own juices.

We applaud, incidentally, the singular courage of Senator Mitt Romney, who is a statesman serving his country above party, a party which nominated him as its standard-bearer in 2012. He stood tall while his fellow Republicans lost any remaining spine they might have had after participating in the White House cover-up of the solicitation of a bribe from the Ukrainian President to investigate a political opponent in exchange for release of aid money. The Trumpies, of course, will coin a cute little neologism for him, as they do with everyone who dares stand up to their moronic fearless leader and his dictatorial grip over their psyches, easily accomplished for their too frequent reality tv and Fox News watching over the past 25 years or so. They are really hopeless, brainwashed people, who cannot see beyond themselves. Just leave them to their own disgust, self-loathing, irrationality and hatred for the country and for everything for which it stands in its Constitution. They support only their ruthless dictator, who takes sadistic pleasure in irritating people who will not submit to his royal highness, as a small, devilish child bent on egocentric control of his world.

Nor did President Eisenhower seek appeal to the lowest common denominator by pinning a medal on a ruthless demagogue who, for his thirty pieces of silver, has sat spewing bilious lies across the radio and tv airwaves for 35 years, one of the most divisive, vitriolic voices on the airwaves in the past century. A lot of people have cancer. That is no reason to reward the devil-scum among us. But nothing less would have been expected from the crazy person in the White House.

Shame on the obscurantist 52 who found that soliciting a bribe is not an impeachable offense. The Founders were heard to shift in their graves, their backs turned to these arrogant punks who call themselves "Senators".

We also give kudos to the House Managers who undertook their task tirelessly, honorably, eloquently and with courage, in the face of relentless and unprecedented billingsgate from the Trumpies and their fearless leader.

No one, of course, expected anything less than an acquittal from the spineless ones, but at least more could have been anticipated than a rigged kangaroo court which heard no testimony or obtained any documentary evidence before rendering its hurried verdict, so that the 52 could return to delivering their daily obeisance to their king. From now on, just address each and all of those 52 Senators who voted to acquit on Article 1 as Judge Bean.

In a reverse context, where there was truly a politically motivated impeachment, regarding alleged illegal discharges of Federal officials, it is worth remembering from Senator John F. Kennedy's 1956 book, Profiles in Courage, a chapter on Senator Edmund G. Ross, who refused to buckle to Republican Party pressure to cast a deciding vote to convict President Andrew Johnson in 1868. Senator Romney is worthy of the same accolade.

It is also worth remembering the words of deceased former Supreme Court Justice Byron White from his concurrence in Walter Nixon v. U.S., decided in 1993, the majority holding that the question of Senate interpretation of the word "try" in the Constitution, and its attendant procedural implications, in the context of the Senate being the sole trier of impeachments, was within the sole province of the Senate to determine and not justiciable by the courts as an interference otherwise with another branch of the Government. Justice White, while concurring in the outcome of the Nixon case on the facts before the Court, where Judge Nixon had contended that the Senate Judiciary Committee, as a fact-finding body which heard evidence and reported its findings to the full Senate, constituted an inadequate trial, violative of due process, for not being a trial by the Senate as a whole, foresaw another scenario where a Senate might arbitrarily decide an impeachment, as by a flip of a coin, for instance, or because the impeached individual was deemed a "bad guy", and found that in such an instance, the courts would have reason to intervene to prescribe minimal due process and fairness. Justice White said, in words joined by Justice Harry Blackmun and echoed in a separate concurrence by Justice David Souter:

"The majority's review of the historical record thus explains why the power to try impeachments properly resides with the Senate. It does not explain, however, the sweeping statement that the Judiciary was 'not chosen to have any role in impeachments.' 1 Ante at 234. Not a single word in the historical materials cited by the majority addresses judicial review of the Impeachment Trial Clause. And a glance at the arguments surrounding the Impeachment Clauses negates the majority's attempt to infer nonjusticiability from the Framers' arguments in support of the Senate's power to try impeachments.

"What the relevant history mainly reveals is deep ambivalence among many of the Framers over the very institution of impeachment, which, by its nature, is not easily reconciled with our system of checks and balances. As they clearly recognized, the branch of the Federal Government which is possessed of the authority to try impeachments, by having final say over the membership of each branch, holds a potentially unanswerable power over the others. In addition, that branch, insofar as it is called upon to try not only members of other branches, but also its own, will have the advantage of being the judge of its own members' causes.

"It is no surprise, then, that the question of impeachment greatly vexed the Framers. The pages of the Convention debates reveal diverse plans for resolving this exceedingly difficult issue. See P. Hoffer & N. Hull, Impeachment in America, 1635-1805, pp. 97-106 (1984) (discussing various proposals). Both before and during the Convention, Madison maintained that the Judiciary ought to try impeachments. Id., at 74, 98, 100. Shortly thereafter, however, he devised a quite complicated scheme that involved the participation of each branch. Id., at 74-75. Jefferson likewise had attempted to develop an interbranch system for impeachment trials in Virginia. Id., at 71-72. Even Hamilton's eloquent defense of the scheme adopted by the Constitution was based on a pragmatic decision to further the cause of ratification, rather than a strong belief in the superiority of a scheme vesting the Senate with the sole power to try impeachments. While at the Convention, Hamilton advocated that impeachment trials be conducted by a court made up of state-court judges. 1 Records of the Federal Convention of 1787, pp. 292-293 (M. Farrand ed. 1966). Four months after publishing the Federalist Nos. 65 and 66, however, he urged the New York Ratifying Convention to amend the Clause he had so ably defended to have the Senate, the Supreme Court, and judges from each State jointly try impeachments. 5 The Papers of Alexander Hamilton 167-168 (H. Syrett ed. 1962).

"The historical evidence reveals above all else that the Framers were deeply concerned about placing in any branch the 'awful discretion, which a court of impeachments must necessarily have.' The Federalist No. 65, p. 441 (J. Cooke ed. 1961). Viewed against this history, the discord between the majority's position and the basic principles of checks and balances underlying the Constitution's separation of powers is clear. In essence, the majority suggests that the Framers conferred upon Congress a potential tool of legislative dominance, yet at the same time rendered Congress' exercise of that power one of the very few areas of legislative authority immune from any judicial review. While the majority rejects petitioner's justiciability argument as espousing a view 'inconsistent with the Framers' insistence that our system be one of checks and balances,' ante, at 234, it is the Court's finding of nonjusticiability that truly upsets the Framers' careful design. In a truly balanced system, impeachments tried by the Senate would serve as a means of controlling the largely unaccountable Judiciary, even as judicial review would ensure that the Senate adhered to a minimal set of procedural standards in conducting impeachment trials...

"...It is clear that the Framers were familiar with English impeachment practice, and with that of the States employing a variant of the English model at the time of the Constitutional Convention. Hence, there is little doubt that the term 'try,' as used in Art. I, 3, cl. 6, meant that the Senate should conduct its proceedings in a manner somewhat resembling a judicial proceeding. Indeed, it is safe to assume that Senate trials were to follow the practice in England and the States, which contemplated a formal hearing on the charges, at which the accused would be represented by counsel, evidence would be presented, and the accused would have the opportunity to be heard." [Emphasis added.]

The same principle ought apply when there was no evidence presented in the trial before the Senate, only a summary allowed of the evidence presented in the House, the charging body under the Constitution, equivalent to a grand jury or preliminary hearing in the criminal law context, wherein is presented normally only the bare bones evidence necessary to establish each element of a charge and that the accused committed the offense, by no means all of the evidence ultimately to be marshaled against the accused at trial. The "acquittal", of course, after such a "trial" as just took place in 2020, is a meaningless exercise in self-fulfilling advocacy through majority vote along partisan lines on rules of procedure, ignoring ordinary due process and fairness to the American people, ultimately the prosecuting authority, in the conduct of the "trial".

Perhaps, it is time to consider amending the Constitution to make impeachment a meaningful check on a despotic President, by at least affording review by the Federal courts of any procedural rules voted by the Senate, to make it an effective deterrent to such behavior in the future. As it sits, no billionaire in the White House, with unlimited financial resources to hire counsel, will be the least deterred by such a broken and emasculate process from acting in any way he deems fit, knowing that the requisite 67 Senators will not convict him of anything, not even solicitation of a bribe to gain advantage in an upcoming election, a specific crime enumerated in the impeachment clause, and that a majority of the same party will vote rules to rig the process to disallow presentation of any evidence in the trial and thereby facilitate White House stonewalling of the earlier House inquiry leading to the vote of impeachment articles.

One thing develops historically out of the 2020 impeachment trial, which will, thanks to the courage of Senator Romney, go down in the books as the first impeachment trial in the nation's history in which a member of the same party voted to remove a President from office, thus stilling, by its own terms of requiring at least one member of the same party in support of the impeachment, the rhetoric that it was a strictly "partisan" impeachment. Last we looked, the crime of solicitation of a bribe for performance of an official act by a public official is not a partisan crime.

"The Anomaly of 'Local' Legislation" lists several local bills which occupied the attention of the General Assembly during the week, distracting from more important work, again recommends ending the outdated practice and turning local government functions, such as setting salaries for local government officials, over to the localities.

"Red-Face Dept." indicates that military chieftains had set the record straight the prior week about "Operation Smack" in Korea, after it had become the object of criticism by some in Congress who believed it to have been a show put on by visiting brass and the press. It finds that it had been no different from countless other armed actions during the war, except that some overly ambitious public relations officer had highlighted it for the press by placing the operational plans under a multi-colored cover. It suggests that the carping Congressmen now stood embarrassed.

"G-Man Scheidt" tells of former head of the Charlotte FBI office, Ed Scheidt, having retired at age 50 from the Bureau recently in Detroit, 21 years after joining it fresh out of UNC. It recaps his career, indicates that he intended to return home to his native New Jersey, but expresses the hope that he might return to the South one day and specifically to Charlotte "where his admirers are both numerous and enthusiastic."

A piece from the New Orleans Times-Picayune, titled "The Yell, Louisiana Subgroup", tells of having obtained from the newspaper's archives a film recording of a genuine Rebel yell made in 1932 at Camp Nicholls, the Confederate veterans' home in New Orleans. It provides a description and indicates that the Louisiana veterans had claimed that they had "whooped better and louder" than any other troops of the Confederacy.

Wun'erful, wun'erful...

Drew Pearson tells of the President set to join a group of Congressmen for a breakfast prayer on Thursday morning, a seldom publicized tradition occurring once per week. Members from both parties attended. The President had agreed to attend, provided there was no radio or television around. Former President Truman's minister at the First Baptist Church in Washington would deliver the concluding prayer.

The President would speak at two universities, Dartmouth and William & Mary, as soon as he could arrange it, after making the commitment before the election. Otherwise, speaking commitments were being postponed until later.

Senator Homer Ferguson had told Secretary of Labor Martin Durkin to continue to publish the old cost-of-living index the following month, along with the new one, as G.M.'s escalator contract clause was tied to the old one.

Congressman Robert Kean of New Jersey, expressing the hope that diversity would be accepted in the nation, had pointed out that a black woman, Dorothy Maynor, had sung at the Eisenhower inauguration, and that Rabbi Abba Silver had led the nation in prayer during the ceremony.

The President, by his observers, knew how to use the same political finesse which characterized FDR, allowing others to carry the ball for him so that their noses would be bloodied before his. He had sent Budget director Joseph Dodge to the Congress to present the Administration's position on the reorganization bill. Then, press secretary James Hagerty announced that the President was not too interested in having the same powers possessed by President Truman in that regard, so that Mr. Dodge took the defeat rather than the President.

Mr. Pearson notes that the defeat was serious, with the requirement of a constitutional majority in each house rather than a majority of those present meaning that it would be difficult for the President to cut out waste in the Government and save millions of dollars, a pledge made by General Eisenhower during the campaign. It was another victory for the "unseen hand" of Senator Taft, whose two committee chairmen led the opposition, while House Democrats voted with the President's position on retaining the constitutional-majority rule to veto in either house a reorganization plan submitted by the President.

Ann Sawyer of The News, in the first of three articles, regards the proposed consolidation of City and County services, starting with the Recorder's Courts, explaining how it would impact the 30,000 defendants who would appear before those courts during the year. If you have a special interest in that prospect, you may read it.

James Marlow indicates that President Eisenhower had taken a conciliatory tone in his State of the Union message, in contrast to the discordant relations between former President Truman and the Congress. He might have caused some momentary irritations during the address, for instance to Southern Democrats, when he said that he would try to end racial segregation in Washington, as well as for those members of Congress who were set on cutting taxes right away. But on the whole, the message had been one of conciliation. Whether he would, ultimately, be able to have better relations with Congress than his predecessor could only be determined in time.

He did not attempt to lay out a blueprint for his program, explaining that he had not been on the job long enough to do so. Thus, his message had been a mixture of generalities and some specific suggestions, sometimes vague in those suggestions. He had, for instance, suggested changes in Taft-Hartley, but did not specify what the changes would be. He promised mutual security to other nations but qualified it by saying that they would receive help only in the "measure that they strive earnestly to do their full share of the common task."

No one could quarrel with any of his statements, concludes Mr. Marlow, and no President ever spelled out specifically what he had in mind on every subject.

A letter writer from Rock Hill, S.C., who says he had been engaged in the retail installment business for nearly 30 years, opposes the proposed wage garnishment amendment to the State Constitution, as negatively impacting business.

A letter writer reacts to the letter previously written criticizing Billy Graham as a "mountebank", says he resents anyone ridiculing unjustly any servant of the Lord.

A letter writer from Lancaster, S.C., finds that when people drank liquor and drove, they had accidents, often killing others. She wants the state to pass a statewide referendum abolishing local option and ABC-controlled sale of liquor through local referendums.

Write the mob leaders in Chicago for support.

A letter from the chairman of the steering committee of the Ministerial Association thanks the newspaper for its recent coverage of the Preaching Mission.

A letter from three "lonely" Air Force soldiers in France says that they rarely received letters at mail call and seeks people to write to them.

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