The Charlotte News
Tuesday, February 25, 1941
Site Ed. Note: As we have reminded to us in "In the Open", money greases the wheels of propaganda which gets the soft-headed letter writers dripping and dipping in the ink wells, which gets going the hair-trigger pols in Congress, the ones with fingers always in the winds, which leads to that and leads to this.
Now, when we think about it, what country in the present case of February, 2003 has both the seemingly unlimited money and financial and geopolitical self-interest to whip propaganda in this country, not in this case against war, but for war, and for a war without precedent for the United States, to bring about regime change elsewhere, having nothing to do with the Monroe Doctrine, or an extension of it, always heretofore our only ground for going to war short of direct attack or declaration of war upon us?
Where were they from?
We respectfully suggest that terrorism cannot be met by military sanction against innocents. Someone whose family was killed in Vietnam, Laos or Cambodia 33 years ago by American bombs would have the equivalent argument otherwise, no? To us it was justified, but to them it was terrorism, a Yanqui invasion of their country, not unlike the South perceived things 150 years ago.
Terror which is suspected to be sponsored by one or more governments should be met with the most stringent of diplomatic and economic sanctions. We cannot prop up the starving, or make a quarter of a billion dollars off smuggling cigarettes to them in violation of international and domestic law, and then turn around and say that does not work so let us bomb the people we sent the aid to in order to "help" them be free. There is a fault in the logic.
Put all that money and political and social energy into developing a safe hydrogen cell vehicle and there you have it. A 21st century outlook to displace a 19th century outlook, fine and dandy as it might have been at the time under the circumstances of the time in which western humanity found itself with severed limbs lying in the backyard. Give it time, generations, and other parts of the world will get that picture, too. No one made us get it but ourselves--assuming, that is, that we get it, which seems a safe assumption for most of us most of the time anyway. But bear in mind that we too had all the open space, all the new frontiers, all the mineral wealth, the fresh, clean air, and...we then had a civil war. Perhaps it is that which breeds despotism in the end. Not too much freedom, but too much for the few and too little for the rest.
Nor will we force those who haven't to get it.
The Howard Smiths Should Heed a Great Industrialist
Members of Congress, like Howard Smith, who are playing with bills designed to outlaw strikes in national defense industries--which ultimately includes virtually all industries--would do well to listen to William Knudsen.
Not even the most rabid labor-baiter will accuse Mr. Knudsen of left-wing sympathies or an undue bias toward the side of labor. He is one of the country's chief industrialists, and like industrialist in general has defended his interests vigorously.
He says now that he favors a "cooling-off" period before strikes are called, but even that, he believes, ought not to be made compulsory by law but should be voluntarily provided for by Labor itself.
Mr. Knudsen is an enlightened industrialist who knows from experience that bitter-end fights between capital and labor are quite as costly for capital as for labor, for the simple reason that angry and sullen men make poor workmen.
And he knows that attempts at coercing labor now are doubly dangerous, says they are bound to have the effect of splitting the country wide open at a time when unity and productive effort is absolutely necessary to the national safety.
Labor has its responsibilities in the case as well as capital. But one obvious obligation which ought not be lost sight of is that of the politicoes to park their prejudices and spites and consider what best serves the nation.
In The Open
Clark of Idaho Makes Clear The Bias of Wheelerites
Yesterday the Associated Press reported:
"People of America, you are on your way to war," exclaimed Clark (Senator from Idaho). "You are moving to war on a turbulent cataract of untruths and propaganda. You are being driven there by international financiers who will coin money out of the blood of your sons."
One word is carefully left out of that--the word Jewish which is supposed to come before "international financiers." Otherwise the statement comes straight out of "Mein Kampf."
So long as it is possible a certain restraint ought to be maintained in all arguments. Understatement is preferable to overstatement, and the interest of maintaining reasonably amicable human relations. But there comes a time when it is best to face facts clearly and without compromise.
So far as we know there is no evidence that Clark, Wheeler & Co. are consciously Nazi sympathizers. But it may be flatly stated on the basis of their utterances that most of them have let themselves be taken in by this myth about non-existent Jewish international financiers--the myth that lies at the base of all Nazism and which everywhere calls forth the same brutal attitude that characterizes the Nazis. It is clearly so of Clark. And it is apparently so of Robert Rice Reynolds, among others.
It is quite evident, in short, that if these men are not overt Nazi sympathizers, they nonetheless read the official Nazi propaganda and believe in it.
That makes it a matter of the gravest concern that they have announced plans for a nation-wide campaign to try to whip up the people to reject the Lend-Lease Bill, and that Wheeler is reported to have said in private that there will be a filibuster on the bill.
At present the Senators are already being deluged with a great avalanche of mail against the bill. The polls show conclusively that the people of the country favor the measure, but these letters are uniformly against it. Many of them are undoubtedly the direct product of Nazi money, and all of them are the product of people who, consciously or unconsciously, are being played on by Nazi propaganda agencies.
Treason is defined by the Constitution as levying war against the United States or giving aid and comfort to its enemies--obviously meaning in time of war. It is a wise provision, for the good reason that experience shows that an easy definition of treason in invariably abused.
Nevertheless, war, like everything else, has changed. And it can be argued with a great deal of evidence that we are already actually at war. Merely, the nature of the thing is now such that we haven't yet turned to actual physical encounter with Germany.
And it is clear enough that these men, whatever their conscious purposes, are already giving aid and comfort to the deadly enemy of the United States--a man who, if he can, will destroy our existence as a nation, and who is certain, if he wins this war, to destroy our way of life, directly or indirectly.
Stirring up mass hysteria to block the decision on the Lend-Lease Bill goes still further in that direction. And a filibuster will come very near to being equivalent to levying war on the United States.
Joyner Puts City's Murder Problem Up to the Courts
Police Chief Joyner seems bent on passing the buck to Solicitor John Carpenter and the judges of Mecklenburg Superior Court.
Since Joyner took office in December there have been nine murders in the city, which is up to the standard rate in this most murderous city in America.
But there is one difference. The police say they have solved all nine cases. Nine arrests have been made. Furthermore, Chief Joyner insists that his department will go right on solving the cases as they appear and arresting the killers.
Which is fine so far as it goes. Arrests of the criminals by the police, the gathering of evidence, are the necessary groundwork. But arrests and evidence do no good unless the case is prosecuted with vigor, unless a conviction is secured and adequate sentence is meted out.
In the past, the trouble has been in part the fault of the Police Department in failing to ferret out and arrest many of the killers. The coroner let some of them go. But the worst trouble has always been that the Negro murderer could always count on a lackadaisical prosecution and, even when convicted, on sentences that often seem to hold a murdered Negro's life as of no more importance than that of a few chickens.
The murder rate in the city will not fall simply because the police are showing more efficiency in solving crimes and seizing criminals. It will fall only when the potential Negro killer has been thoroughly convinced that he will be arrested, tried rapidly, convicted, and punished in proportion--including a seat in the gas chamber if it is first degree murder.
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