The Charlotte News
Friday, February 21, 1941
Site Ed. Note: "Here We Go" is not by Cash, probably by J. E. Dowd, but we include it by way of explanation as to why no further Sunday News editorials by Cash will appear after the February 23 edition.
Senator Wheeler sounds in "The Censor" a bit like those wheelers who complain today, as they have for decades, about the "liberal media"--and then proceed to preach fulsomely the most illiberal thoughts imaginable in full exhibition over the airwaves supposedly controlled by this conspiratorial liberal media so chocked full of illiberal thinking and soap-speak that it is liberal only in the sense of allowing many disparate views, from the sublime to the ridiculous, usually the ridiculous. Of course, unless it is all of "law and order", wave the flag, and commercial-speak, many insist it is liberal--just as say Hitler or Mussolini might have shilled to get more control over the thoughts of those little peons over whom they would be Masters.
This proclamation of liberality of course stems from a fundamental misunderstanding of our cultural heritage.
We say again, what should be obvious to every American, that we are constituted as a liberal society, founded on the most liberal document ever founding a government. Freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of religion, freedom of association, freedom to assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances, freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures, equal protection of all citizens under the laws--all liberal ideals, not just libertarian, liberal. Learn to live with it. Love liberalism or leave it... And if you choose not to accept it, Mexico should undoubtedly suit you fine. When you decide you prefer liberalism, you may return anytime.
In "True To Form", Cash yet again attacks favorite target, N.C. Senator Robert Rice Reynolds. Does Reynolds and his alien-baiting, his Vindicators, his imperialist motives, remind of anyone in our midst today? Hmmmmm, let us think.
Isolationism goes hand in hand with such other bitter brothers, not unlike the Three Sisters. Let them fall so that we might divide their bounty. If some won't fall on their own, we will trip them and say, "How clumsy you are." If then they get back up, we shall knock them down again and say, "You resist us, do you?" And if that does not get them, the Vindicators will vindicate their her'tage--and we know what that means.
In short, true isolationists, as quite distinct from pacifists who are morally opposed to war, wage war against smaller countries with small military capabilities to gain territory, to gain raw materials, to gain the production capacity of the inferior. But isolationists will not ever venture into wars between foreign nations. They wait on the sidelines and try to help themselves in the aftermath of the bloodbath. Hitler, Mussolini, Tojo--prime exemplars of isolationists. Not just imperialists, but isolationists in the purest sense.
That is why the opposite of an isolationist is an interventionist.
Here We Go!*
Dropping of Sunday's Paper Means a Better Charlotte News
The whole News organization is alight with shining countenances today. What some of them have known (and had to keep to themselves) for weeks and others for days and all of them for hours is now spread in the headlines--that with the publication of its final Sunday morning edition day after tomorrow, The News is to return to its natural, normal, exclusive field of "every afternoon except Sunday."
It is a decisive move, and yet now that it is taken we are beginning to wonder why we did not take it long ago. The Sunday News has been made into an excellent paper, superior in its way. But the abnormality of putting out six afternoon papers and than having to turn around immediately, without stopping, and put out a Sunday morning paper, had its impairing effect on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday papers.
The result was that the thought and energy and enthusiasm which all along has gone into making The News the livest newspaper in the Carolinas, and the largest afternoon newspaper, were diffused. These qualities had to be divided by seven, which reduced the impressiveness of the display that they made. The week began and culminated with that Sunday morning paper uppermost in our minds.
Henceforth, each day will culminate in itself with the issuance of the livest, completest, most readable afternoon paper in the Carolinas or in this whole territory, a new and re-invigorated Charlotte News. We are full of high hopes and great plans, eager for the fray, and we think our readers will be highly pleased with the result.
A Man Who Fears Tyrants Tries Out His Own Hand
One of the most interesting things which has come out of the current Lease-Lend argument is the action of Burton Wheeler, chairman of the Senate Interstate Commerce Committee. He has demanded that all radio stations in the country furnish them with the names of all persons who spoke in favor of the bill, and the names of the persons who paid for these broadcasts.
There is, he says, a centralized plot to put this bill over, all to the purpose of getting us into war, and he is going to expose it. The plain implication is that the "plot" is British-financed and that the speakers are really propagandist agents of London.
He neglects, however, to say anything at all about the possibility of centralized plots to defeat the bill--or the possibility of the use of Nazi money.
The meaning of all this is plain enough. The very thought of the Interstate Commerce Committee of the Senate and the House gives the radio men shivers. The two together ultimately control the Communications Commission, which in turn holds the power of life and death over all radio stations.
And the plain bi-purpose of this demand on the part of Wheeler is to play on their fears, to intimidate them, and make them reluctant to allow Lend-Lease advocates the use of their facilities, though the antis use them freely also.
Mr. Wheeler has represented himself in this debate as being very fearful of a dictator who would end free speech in the country. Apparently, however, he has no objections to playing censor on his own account.
Which Should Also Serve To Warn Labor Leaders
A committee of the Georgia Senate has approved a bill to outlaw the collection of labor union dues from men who work on public projects.
What it amounts to, of course, is a bill to drive men at work on defense and other Government projects altogether out of the union--to break up the unions on such projects and to slowly weaken them in general. As such, it is obviously in conflict with the Wagner Act. And since the Federal Government has the superior jurisdiction, it will almost certainly be found to be unconstitutional if it ever passes.
It ought never to pass, of course. Such efforts to destroy unionism in the name of national defense are perfectly calculated to split the country wide open and to open the way to the foreign enemy.
But the bill also should serve as a pointed warning to the unions themselves. Excuse used by the sponsors of this bill is that the unions have been charging exorbitant initiation fees for new workers on national defense projects--and they offered witnesses to bear out the charge.
There is no reasonable doubt that such charges have been collected all over the country. But William Green, head of AFL has refused to admit it or to do anything about it. And CIO has also been mum.
It is a blind and foolish course. For it gives the enemies of labor a powerful pretext for coercive action.
True To Form
Robert Stands by His Principles, Regardless
Robert Rice Reynolds evidently thought it over and found the abandonment of his principles too much to be stomached, despite his clientele in North Carolina being almost solid for the Lend-Lease Bill.
He said nobody in America was more opposed to war than he was. And nobody who is acquainted with the record will deny that this is one of his consistently held principles.
As long ago as 1915 he was already so opposed to war that he resigned a National Guard commission as cavalry captain on the eve of the Mexican trouble.
Nor has he receded from the position which he took up immediately after visiting Germany in 1937. He did not, indeed, any longer pay tribute to Mr. Hitler's achievements, as he used to do on the Senate floor. But he did cling fast to his Anglophobia.
England, he said, was obviously about to fall unless she got aid from us. Well, then, let her fall, and let us grab her possessions in this hemisphere. Far from the British Navy being our bulwark in the Atlantic, we were in fact the main support of the British Empire. It was time to have that empire and take our share.
It is worth observing specifically that this was among other things an imperialistic speech. Dorothy Thompson has pointed out that the program of the American Fascists contemplates an American imperialism, modeled on that of the Nazis and extending to the whole Western Hemisphere. And that Robert was primarily addressing his Vindicator following, which has highly developed Fascist characteristics, as amply demonstrated by the fact that he spent much of his time in alien-baiting.
What ought not to be overlooked also is that, though Robert spoke only three hours, he took up the whole day. It was Senator Robert Taft's turn to speak next, but the Senator explained ruefully that Robert had told him that his speech would last all day, and so left him unprepared. An excellent delaying tactic, if you want to sabotage aid for England.
A man who sets up his own British prejudices over the will of his constituency, obviously. And also, perhaps, a man who observes that the Vindicators have potentialities of carrying him to far greater heights than any mere Tar Heel electorate ever could do--provided, of course, Mr. Hitler wins in Europe.
When Japanese Threat Is At Door Congress Awakes
The House has unanimously adopted a bill authorizing $242,000,000 for the development of a naval base in Guam. In the last two sessions, it indignantly rejected proposals for much less ambitious projects at Guam. And in the Senate the opposition, led by the late Borah, was even more vigorous.
And so at last with the Japanese Navy already busily preparing for aggressive action in the East, something is done which plainly ought to have been done years ago. The sole excuse for not doing it in the past was that it was an unnecessary waste of money--an argument used by the cow statesmen to grease their clientele in the Middle West--and that it would offend Japan. The latter came to the astounding proposition that the United States must not exercise sovereignty over its own territory. And was made doubly ridiculous by the fact that for years Japan has been busy fortifying her islands which lie between Hawaii and the Philippines and turning them into naval bases.
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