The Charlotte News

Monday, March 22, 1954


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports from Hanoi in Indo-China that the French Union troops were bracing themselves anew this date for an anticipated fresh mass assault against the Dien Bien Phu fortress from the Vietminh. Tank and infantry reinforcements had bolstered the besieged French defenders, with fresh troops, war equipment, ammunition and provisions having been parachuted from French transport planes and American-supplied flying boxcars piloted by U.S. civilians. French, Vietnamese, Senegalese, Moroccan and Algerian troops, plus the German soldiers dominating the French Foreign Legion, were dug deep into trenches and dirt-bagged bunkers behind the mazes of barbed wire constituting the fortress. The area had taken on increasingly the appearance of a World War I battlefield, with the Vietminh situated also in hastily constructed trenches, some of which were only 200 to 400 yards from the French Union line. U.S. officials in Washington were reviewing French requests for more U.S. bombers and transports, and the Joint Chiefs were considering a proposal to send another group of about 25 B-26 light bombers and an undisclosed number of transports to Indo-China.

Senate Republican leaders appeared to be increasingly in favor of Senator McCarthy stepping aside completely from his Investigations subcommittee while it investigated the dispute between the Senator and the Army. The Senator announced a tentative decision that he would not do so, having already stepped aside temporarily as chairman in favor of Senator Karl Mundt of South Dakota. Senator McCarthy had also suggested that the subcommittee use lie detectors to get at the truth of the matter. He said he had complete confidence in the polygraph when operated properly and that he would be willing to submit to the test. Senate Majority Leader William Knowland said that he did not want to interfere with the committee functions but believed that Senator McCarthy should voluntarily agree not to question witnesses or vote on issues before the subcommittee in the investigation. Senator McCarthy had said that he did not plan to vote "on any final decisions or conclusions" of the subcommittee. Senator Charles Potter of Michigan, a member of the subcommittee, said that he was not going to insist that Senator McCarthy step aside temporarily from the subcommittee.

Senator Lister Hill of Alabama said this date that prospects were favorable for Senate adoption of the proposed $200 increase in personal exemptions, as proposed by Senator Walter George of Georgia. Senator Paul Douglas of Illinois said, on the "Meet Your Congress" television program, that he would seek to write 382 million dollars more in reductions into the excise tax bill now before the Senate. He said that the cuts he advocated could mean a $50 price reduction on automobiles and about $25 in reduction on appliances such as refrigerators. He said that the Republican program would not cure the deepening recession and that the current tax revision bill proposed by the Republicans and presently before the Senate Finance Committee would provide the average taxpayer only six dollars per year in reduction, while cutting $1,700 per year from the taxes paid by the average stock owner making more than $10,000 per year. Republican Representative Robert Kean of New Jersey said, on the same program, that he knew of no one who had caused more jobs to be lost than Senator Douglas "through his preaching of gloom all the time". Representative Carl Curtis of Nebraska, also a Republican, said that Senator Douglas was spreading "fear psychology".

In Washington, the Committee for Economic Development, a private but influential organization of businessmen and economists, said at a news conference the previous day that the time had not arrived when there was a recession of some severity, and they generally agreed that tax cuts and public works programs were methods by which the Government could attack a recession when the time was ripe. Senator Hill had said that the economic indices suggested to him that the situation was getting worse and that the Administration should move with a program of public works in which the states and local communities could participate. But the CED, in its policy statement, said that invoking such measures, as well as the excise tax cuts urged by Senator Douglas, against "small, short and uncertainly forecast recessions", carried the risk of delayed effects.

In Toronto, Secretary of Commerce Sinclair Weeks, in remarks prepared for the Canadian Club, said this date that the U.S. economy was "in excellent shape". He said if conditions required, however, there would be no hesitation in using new monetary policy, new tax revisions, new incentives to business for expansion and employment, large-scale public works and whatever further public spending and legislation were needed to cope with an emergency.

The Senate began debate this date on whether to unseat Senator Dennis Chavez of New Mexico because of irregularities claimed in the November election, not reflecting on the Senator personally. Democrats appeared unanimous in voting against the move to unseat him, and it was predicted that some Republican Senators also might vote with the Democrats. Currently, the Democrats had a nominal majority of 48 to 47 seats in the Senate, with Senator Wayne Morse of Oregon having declared in 1952 as an independent, but voting with Republicans for organizational purposes, meaning that Vice-President Nixon could break ties. But with a Republican Governor in New Mexico, if Senator Chavez were unseated, in all likelihood a Republican replacement would be appointed.

Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas continued leading a 34-person, 184-mile, eight-day hike along the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal outside Washington, to try to convince two Washington editorial writers, who had written editorials favoring construction of a Federal highway along the route, to change their minds. Justice Douglas believed the proposed highway would spoil the natural beauty of the landscape and so had invited them to participate in a hike along its length. After three days of hiking, they had reached Fort Frederick State Park, the only night of camping in the open which they planned before their scheduled arrival back in Washington the following Saturday. They had spent the previous night at the Woodmont Rod and Gun Club near Hancock, Md., 37 miles southeast of their starting point Saturday morning, in Cumberland. The number of persons in the expedition had shrunk from 34 to about 25 this date after they had been forced to hike along muddy trails and in blustery weather the previous day, including a few snow flurries. Most of the nine who had quit were newsmen, government officials and others who had to get back to work assignments on Monday. Justice Douglas, an avid hiker, showed little sign of fatigue. A 78-year old retired mail carrier from Washington was the oldest hiker in the group and was also going strong.

In Lisbon, two Yugoslav volleyball players, who said they were tired of Communism, had deserted their country's championship team and asked for political asylum in Portugal.

In Philadelphia, a flash fire had swept through the sleeping quarters of a 5,000-ton Danish freighter the previous day, killing three of the crewmen. No cause of the fire is indicated.

In Oklahoma City, after 60 years of marriage, a woman provided her formula for successful marriage, that she gave her husband a lot of loving and set a hot plate of biscuits before him every day. Her husband, a physician, said that he gave her a lot of loving, too. The couple repeated their wedding vows before a minister for the third time, having also repeated their vows ten years earlier on their golden wedding anniversary. The wife said that the marriage was bound to stick because the third time was the charm. Does he get anything to eat besides biscuits?

In Kansas City, a woman took her eight-year old daughter downtown to buy her an Easter outfit, the daughter telling her mother that she did not want "any just plain stuff" but rather wanted "a dress like the dining room curtains, you know, with holes in what it's made of." They found only one dress which pleased the girl, one pale pink and lacy. Four large red hearts drawn on her bare chest in lipstick had shown through the lace on the dress, along with Cupid's arrow and the words: "Suzie Loves Terry. Terry Loves Suzie." After returning home, she had the lipstick tattoo washed off by her mother, protesting, "But that's what for I wanted the dress."

Not on the front page, the N.C.A.A. basketball national semifinals took place the prior Friday night in Kansas City, with La Salle beating Penn State 69 to 54 and Bradley nipping Southern Cal., 74 to 72. The finals occurred Saturday night, with La Salle winning 92 to 76 over Bradley, behind star Tom Gola. The third-place consolation game went to Penn State, 70 to 61. The teams played in the consolation game under an experimental rule allowing one-and-one after every non-shooting foul. Prior to that game, only one free throw was allowed on each non-shooting foul, with a waiver of free throws available in favor of throwing the ball inbounds at midcourt, from 1939-40 through 1951-52. The one-and-one rule for every non-shooting foul was fully implemented in 1954-55 and the traditional one-shot free throw for non-shooting fouls was restored in 1957-58 for the first six fouls in each half, with the seventh earning the bonus. The single free throw rule for non-shooting fouls on the first six fouls was eliminated in 1972-73 in favor of the possession rule, and the double bonus after ten fouls in a half was implemented in 1990-91, with the three free-throw rule on a foul committed while shooting a three-point shot going into effect the following season. The tournament expanded in 1954 to 24 teams, eight of which received first-round byes, advancing straightway to the semifinals of the regionals, an increase of two teams over 1953, four teams over 1952, and eight teams above the 16-team field in 1951, doubled in size that year from the original format of only eight teams since the first tournament in 1939, gradually increasing commensurate with the loss of prestige of the N.I.T., originally a tournament of equal or greater prestige. The tournament would remain in variance between 23 and 25 teams thereafter until 1975 when the field was expanded to 32, (though we could have sworn it was 1976, fooled by the initial admission in 1976 to other than conference champions as at-large teams), and then in 1979 to 40, then 48 the following year, 52 in 1983, and finally 64 teams in 1985, plus the two play-in games several years later—don't get your hopes up, play-inners, as you start at the top of the outers.

They played late in those days, before games were televised nationally, because, candidly, few people outside the fan base for the respective schools playing gave a hoot. We forgot about it on Saturday. Sorry, La Salle. We did not have a horse in that race.

Until the 1957 national championship between UNC and Kansas, there was virtually no television coverage, that championship having spawned sufficient interest to be carried over twelve tv stations, five of which were in North Carolina. It was after that triple overtime one-point win by UNC, UNC's second successive triple-overtime game, to go undefeated at 32-0, that interest in college basketball began to reach a larger audience.

Speaking of which, we heard sports announcer Dick Vitale recently say that Gonzaga has an opportunity this year, in 2021, to go undefeated at 32-0 should they win the national championship, and that they would, therefore, equal the feat of Bob Knight at Indiana in 1976. Hey, look here, boy. UNC did that the first time 19 years earlier, when Bob Knight was still in high school. Frank McGuire was the man. Hey, get your facts straight, son, or take your pizza and get off the floor.

On the editorial page, "School Articles Raise Big Questions" comments on News reporter Lucien Agniel's series of five articles appearing on the editorial page the previous week regarding the shortage of school teachers in the state's public schools, especially the elementary schools, and what needed to be done to rectify the shortage. After summarizing Mr. Agniel's findings, it says that he had discovered that public school officials and university authorities were poles apart in their estimate of public education. Public education was the biggest and most important function of North Carolina's State Government and yet many of its philosophical assumptions, techniques and methods had been permitted to develop, in the words of a group of UNC professors, "in a vacuum of public disinterest".

It indicates that the newspaper did not profess to have the answers to the questions raised by the series of articles but was aware that those and other questions were being asked with greater frequency and greater persistence by thoughtful persons all over the country. It says that the newspaper would, from time to time, examine in closer detail the problems which a fast-growing and fast-changing society had placed on the public schools, in the hope that there would be a new awakening of public interest in free and democratic education. Meanwhile, it suggests, if there were parents and teachers in the area who had ideas and opinions on the subject, the newspaper would like to hear them.

"Recreation Survey Is the First Step" indicates that a County commissioner had proposed a countywide recreation commission, underscoring the need for more adequate information on the subject. On its face, the proposal looked good, as the rapid urbanization of the county made it imperative that recreational facilities for the future be presently planned so that sites for them could be reserved. It wonders, however, how the financing would be handled, what allowance would be made for the City's heavy investment in its extensive, though inadequate, recreation system, and how would the new coliseum and auditorium fit into the scheme. It addresses several other questions and indicates that they were just some of the questions which would be asked by the residents of the county and the city before deciding whether to abolish the City Park & Recreation Commission and establish a countywide program.

The County Commission had delayed action on a request by the County Recreation Committee of United Community Services for the City and County Governments to appropriate $5,000 each, plus $2,000 from the United Appeal, to pay for an adequate survey done by experts. It urges the County Commission to act on it this date and favorably.

"Logic—the Georgia Wool Hat Variety" indicates that one reason the State of Georgia was sometimes credited with having a "wool hat" mentality was its official sponsorship of the Georgia Farmers' Market Bulletin, about a quarter million copies of which were distributed free each week. The front page editorials, written by the Agriculture commissioner Tom Linder, usually dealt with the race question, Communism, and international affairs, and were frequently inflammatory and often based on untruths.

In indicates that it would not propose to tell the citizens of Georgia what to do with their publication by the State Agriculture Department, but ventures a suggestion on how The Bulletin could serve a useful purpose, by using it in college logic classes.

The February 17 issue led with the banner headline: "A Communist Is An Internationalist—an Internationalist Is a Communist". It so concluded because Communists worked for one world controlled from Moscow and internationalists also worked for one world, controlled from the "traitors' headquarters of the United Nations". The piece finds it tantamount to saying that a Democrat is a Republican and a Republican is a Democrat, because Democrats and Republicans were both against Communism, or for mother and the home, etc.

It also quotes from the March 10 issue that Jews were opposed to racial prejudice, that Gentiles were opposed to racial prejudice, as was everyone else, Catholics, Protestants, whites, blacks, Democrats, Republicans, North, South, and that since everyone was against racial prejudice, it wondered how could there be any. The piece responds, "Oh, come now, commissioner."

A piece from the Christian Science Monitor, titled "Ticket To Teach", indicates that it would not condone the methods by which a New Hampshire University "bogus professor" had secured his appointment and expresses sympathy for the University, for other colleges and the American Physical Society, all of whom had been duped by his cleverly prepared credentials. But, it indicates, the whole affair raised a question for American higher education which would be recognized by many sincere educators as disturbing. Even though the bogus professor had been called a brilliant physicist by his associates at the University and by the president of the University of Chicago, it was likely that there would have been no position open to him on any respectable college or even high school faculty, had it not been for his subterfuge. For he had no college degrees, undergraduate or advanced, and could offer no evidence of "productive scholarship", such as through authoring a book. Thus, regardless of whether he still might be a sound scholar, there would be no other way for colleges to discover that facility. Whether or not he was a gifted teacher, few would trouble to ask.

It indicates that a nationally accepted standard for faculty and student accreditation had long been essential, but that a system, once established, could begin to function as a self-enforcing substitute for selective judgment.

It concludes that the bogus professor, on ethical grounds, should have been dismissed, but it also finds it worth reflection that on grounds of current academic specifications alone, a good many notable scholars and inventors, from Socrates and Pythagoras through Franklin and Edison, would find it hard to qualify.

Drew Pearson indicates that a crisis inside the armed services, not unlike that occurring when Admiral Louis Denfeld had walked out as chief of Naval Operations, was presently taking place in connection with the so-called "new look" military. Army chief of staff, General Matthew Ridgway, one of the most respected men in the Pentagon, had balked at going along further with drastic military cuts, arguing that the Army was already reduced too drastically and that as an officer entrusted with the safety of the country, he could not conscientiously support further reduction. The point had been reached where General Ridgway would either have to yield to the cuts or resign. Joint Chiefs chairman, Admiral Arthur Radford, had said in his Senate testimony the previous week that the "new look" and push-button warfare might not be the only military answer, a statement made in deference to General Ridgway's point of view. He said that if the country had no capability than to deliver a massive attack, it could "become a prisoner of its own military posture". Admiral Radford personally sympathized with General Ridgway. It had first become known how much General Ridgway opposed the Army cuts when he had initally excused himself from attending the National Security Council meeting at which the cuts were finally decided. Secretary of Defense Charles E. Wilson had, nevertheless, ordered him to attend. General Ridgway, at the meeting, reluctantly agreed to the cuts and his fellow Joint Chiefs argued that since he had agreed, he had to stick by that agreement. Nevertheless, General Ridgway was standing by his earlier statements that he did not believe in the cuts to Army strength. In the meantime, economizers in the Cabinet had pointed out that the March 1 hydrogen bomb explosion had proved more conclusively than ever that ground forces were outmoded. A hydrogen bomb which could affect fishermen 75 miles away could contaminate the city of New York, plus Newark and Elizabeth, N.J., and Bridgeport, Conn., as well as extending up the Hudson to Poughkeepsie.

Newsmen had gone to the office of Senator James Eastland of Mississippi recently to obtain an advance copy of a Senate speech he intended to make attacking statehood for Hawaii, but his secretary told them that there were no copies for it was not to be a speech but rather a filibuster.

Alfred Von Krupp, whose munition works had supplied arms for Hitler even before he had taken over Germany in 1933, and who had been sentenced to 12 years in prison as a Nazi war criminal, had left Essen, Germany, for Nassau and Mexico City. In Mexico, he was scheduled to confer with President Ruiz-Cortines and other Mexican officials about the financing of new factories, dams, mines or power plants under conditions calculated to cut the ground from under the U.S. The conditions were that a price would be paid of 20 percent down and the balance within four years after completion of the factory, dam or project, that Herr Krupp would not seek part-German ownership in the enterprise, and would accept payment in any currency, hard or soft, or in kind.

Joseph & Stewart Alsop indicate that Secretary of State Dulles had completed 90,000 miles of air travel in the interest of U.S. foreign policy. The upcoming Geneva conference on the Far East, set to begin April 26, could, they venture, be the make or break point in his career as Secretary.

They point out that no matter how brilliant a Secretary of State's diplomacy might be, he would be doomed to frustration and paralysis if lacking a secure home base, something Secretary Dulles had realized from the beginning, immediately setting out to shore up his domestic position, having been, however, only partially successful. The Secretary had returned from the Big Four Berlin foreign ministers conference believing that he had scored an historic diplomatic success for exposing the real nature of Soviet policy to all of Europe and the world while strengthening the NATO alliance and forcing Soviet Foreign Minister V. M. Molotov to agree on the conference regarding the Far East on virtually U.S. terms. Yet, when Secretary Dulles returned, he found that Senate Majority Leader William Knowland had already written and released a speech which impliedly criticized the conduct of the Secretary. When the Secretary briefed Senate leaders on the meeting, only Senator Alexander Wiley among Republicans had congratulated him, while the others suspected that he might be intending to recognize Communist China at Geneva. Secretary Dulles was genuinely hurt and dismayed by the reception.

From the start of the Administration, many Republicans, largely former supporters of the late Senator Taft, had viewed Secretary Dulles with suspicion. Their suspicion had been fed initially by his backing of Charles Bohlen to become Ambassador to Russia and by his failure to put a Republican team in the State Department. The latter complaint had been echoed by RNC chairman Leonard Hall, who apparently believed that Mr. Dulles should have fired all personnel of the State Department who had worked for the previous Democratic Administrations, including the professional foreign service officers. In trying to deal with that suspicion, Secretary Dulles had gone through two phases, the first of which had been marked by appeasement, such as the appointment of Scott McLeod as security chief and repeatedly backing down before Senator McCarthy. But the Secretary had soon become aware that appeasement weakened rather than strengthened his position with Congress while also having a bad effect on the Department.

The second phase had begun with the Secretary's eloquent reply to Senator McCarthy's "perfumed notes" speech the prior December. Since that time, the Secretary had done everything possible to restore confidence within the Department, including cutting back on the authority of Mr. McLeod and likely to clear John Paton Davies, incurring in the process the ire of Senator McCarthy. The Secretary had no intention of picking a fight with conservative Republicans, but since his return from Berlin, had clearly made up his mind to go his own way and let the chips fall where they might.

His great source of political strength came from the fact that the President fully supported him. While President Truman had supported Mr. Dulles's predecessor, Secretary of State Acheson, the former President did not have the political power and popularity of President Eisenhower. The President was also determined to use his popularity to help shore up Secretary Dulles's position at home. He had repeatedly gone out of his way to praise the Secretary, and in Vice-President Nixon's recent television speech in response to Governor Adlai Stevenson, the praise for Mr. Dulles was reportedly an insertion at the President's suggestion.

Since Mr. Dulles had learned the lesson that appeasement of Republicans was of no use, his popularity in the nation and respect in Washington, according to State Department private polls, had grown steadily.

Robert C. Ruark indicates that he had heard that there were psychological tests which could determine from an early age whether children would turn out to be juvenile delinquents. The tests had been transpiring for nearly two years in a couple of schools in the Bronx. The candidates for reform school were spotted based on family background and one group was assisted psychiatrically while the other was left alone as a control group, leaving the results to subsequent years to determine the extent to which the tests had been accurate.

He indicates that what the tests were really determining was whether parents were fit to have children, and the curative process was to attempt reform of the children by scrutinizing their parents. If the parents appeared deficient, then the children received extra counsel, when they probably needed new parents, a new neighborhood, and a new inheritance.

He indicates that he could not help but wonder what such a study would have determined of him in his formative years. When he was in kindergarten in Wilmington, N.C., he had once jumped off the roof into the teeth of a fellow student who had dared him to jump, causing the parents and grandparents of the student to become quite angry with him. He had been involved in some fistfights in the classroom later on and had been ordered numerous times to stay after school. He had cheated on mathematics and had a couple of passionate rendezvous with young girls. He had lied some and stolen some, was what the British called a "bad hat". But, he suggests, sociologists would have found that his parents were quite nice despite his bad behavior, that they belonged to the country club, had a big house, two cars and a couple of servants prior to the depression. He had a boat, a billy goat, a pony, a fleet of bird dogs and a series of caves, plus plenty of room in which to move around. He also had wonderful grandparents. His mother had never beat him, instead putting him to bed early and depriving him of reading as a punishment. He had read all of the classics before he was ten years old, but he was still a "young bum". He had been caught siphoning gas from other people's cars and that he reformed somewhat later had nothing to do with what he was presently discussing.

He concludes that if a professional had scrutinized him in terms of his family background, they would have run into a wall.

A letter writer says he is happy that Recorder's Court Judge J. C. Sedberry had entered the Democratic race for the nomination for the 10th Congressional District. He says that the "kingmakers" who had pushed him into the race at the last minute had not reckoned on the filing by local attorney Marvin Ritch and that it had infuriated them that he had muddied the waters. He says that he would support Mr. Ritch, as thousands of people who knew him as a kind, considerate and helpful person to less fortunate citizens would likewise support him. He says, however, that if Mr. Sedberry were to win the race, he would do all he could to help him redeem the district from Republican Congressman Charles Jonas. He asks the editors not to degrade one candidate and praise another on the editorial page.

A letter from "A Grateful Parent" expresses thanks for the articles in the newspaper concerning Charlotte's handicapped children and what was being done for them.

A letter writer from Monroe indicates that when editor Pete McKnight had spoken to the Mooresville Rotary Club on the subject of "fraudulent" charges, he had stated the opinion that the treatment of controversial topics called for "sane, well-rounded, mature judgment on the editorial page." He had failed, however, to say why those desired qualities were often absent from The News. The writer suggests that the editorials on film censorship, the foreign service, and pressure on the country's allies, as well as the reprint of Ralph McGill's editorial indicating that Senator McCarthy was the greatest asset to the Communists, all had shown a lack of "editorial insight, objectivity, reasonableness or fair play." The editorial on film censorship had indicated that such censorship violated fundamental freedom, but the letter writer finds that film censorship, designed to protect the spiritual life of the community, was no more reprehensible than food censorship, designed to protect the physical life of the community. (Aside from defamation, films, and speech otherwise, alone without conduct, will not physically harm you; unregulated food can.) He goes on at some length disagreeing with other News editorials and that of Mr. McGill, suggesting that the latter piece had a deliberate falsehood, that Senator McCarthy had spread suspicion and to some degree demoralized the Protestant clergy, when, according to the letter writer, there was no record anywhere of any mention of the Protestant clergy by Senator McCarthy. He finds the treatment of controversial topics on the editorial page to be "biased, provincial, and sophomoric".

A letter writer from Columbus, Ga., indicates that Adlai Stevenson would have the people believe that he feared Senator McCarthy was wrecking the Republican Party, and wonders why former Governor Stevenson would become defense counsel for the Republicans. He thinks he was actually disturbed because Senator McCarthy had been "ripping up a lot of publicity unfavorable to the Stevenson-Truman-Acheson wing of the Democratic Party".

He appears to conflate the nationally televised and radio broadcast speech of Governor Stevenson on March 6 before a Democratic meeting in Miami Beach with that of Republican Senator Ralph Flanders of Vermont on the Senate floor on March 9. In answering his rhetorical question as to why demagogues, such as Senator McCarthy, had triumphed so often, Governor Stevenson had said: "The answer is inescapable: because a group of political plungers has persuaded the President that McCarthyism is the best Republican formula for political success." In speaking of the Republican Party being regrettably split in half between those supporting the President and those supporting McCarthy, he did not say anything about Senator McCarthy "wrecking" the Republican Party, the basis for the speech of Senator Flanders. Governor Stevenson only talked of the Union being split asunder in the name of Abraham Lincoln, referring to the Lincoln Day speeches of Senator McCarthy and others of his mindset and that the slander technique was also being used on prominent Republicans, such as the unfounded recent attacks out of California against Chief Justice Earl Warren during his confirmation hearings—that he had appointed dishonest judges, among other things, during his eleven years as Governor. The Governor's speech was aimed at the damage to the republic as a whole by the division caused by Senator McCarthy, which included his division also of the Republican Party. He was acting, if as "defense counsel" for anyone—a role imputed to him sarcastically on the prior Saturday by Senator McCarthy, not assumed by Governor Stevenson, himself—, for the people of the United States, not just for the Republican Party.

Whether, incidentally, Governor Stevenson, in using the term "political plungers", somehow, through the mists of time, foresaw not only the fact of Vice-President Nixon being, rather ironically, the designated Administration rebutter, on March 13, to the Governor's remarks but also, after the Vice-President would become President in 1969, the creation in 1971 of the "plumbers unit" of the White House as the Administration's own intelligence-gathering arm, without the Administration's plunger friends paying too much heed in the process to the minor, finer points of the law anent breaking and entering and the Fourth Amendment in going about the search and gathering of such "intelligence", is for history to judge.

Whether Mr. Ehrlichman and some of the other lawyers advising President Nixon at the time, in reliance on words of Congress contained in Federal legislation from 1968 as their rationale for proceeding extra-legally in their intelligence gathering operations, had, perhaps, missed the day in constitutional law in law school when the professor, presumably, covered the effect of the Supremacy Clause, that the Constitution is the supreme law of the land, before any acts of Congress, treaties, etc., or conflicting state laws—such as those in Georgia or elsewhere which might seek, in 2021, to curtail Federal voting rights under the Fifteenth Amendment—, necessarily therefore expressly circumscribing the provisions of 18 USC 2511(3), as enacted in 1968, as quickly, much too quickly, read on July 25, 1973 by Mr. Ehrlichman during his testimony to the Senate Select Committee investigating Watergate, to the effect that nothing in the referenced statutes would "limit the constitutional power of the President to take such measures as he deems necessary to protect the Nation against actual or potential attack or other hostile acts of a foreign power, to obtain foreign intelligence information deemed essential to the security of the United States, or to protect national security information against foreign intelligence activities", perhaps had ducked that lecture, or Socratic exchange as the case might have been, for a spring fête or fall pre-football game Eleusinian mystery party, eleemosynary activity, or something like that, is unclear but wholly probable, as they did not, obviously, obtain, or at least retain, that instruction and understanding, fundamental to appreciation of the Founding of our country and the very basis for the Constitution, itself; or, perhaps, just failed in school generally to acquire full appreciation of an understanding of the English language as well the basic rule of statutory construction that all words of a statute count and none are regarded as surplussage.

By the way, of purely collateral interest, in speaking of the 2,400 persons either discharged or who had resigned under the "security risk" program of the Administration, Mr. Nixon had, apparently, at least, by the Associated Press transcript of his March 13 speech, delivered, as he made perfectly clear, from his own handwritten notes, said that "198 of them shower information indicating sexual perversion..." Now, was that not a dissemination on the part of the Vice-President worthy of one of Dr. Freud's patients?

A letter writer from Cheraw, S.C., indicates that while a lot was being said in Washington about tax cuts, he hopes that the people were wise to the promises made during election years, that he did not know anyone who received stock dividends, that working people did not, those who had received only a small tax cut in January while an increase in Social Security withholding had nullified it. He indicates that if taxes were going to be cut, relief ought be given to the "little taxpayers".

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