The Charlotte News

Wednesday, March 12, 1941



Site Ed. Note: "Our Turn" offers "to a steadily rising din of always more ominous warnings and threats and reassurances and offers", which was to say, perhaps, " ominous stern whisper from the Delphic cave within". "Berlin's Piper" says yet more of the topic.

"...And behind the dim unknown, standeth God within the shadow keeping watch above His own."

Peace to the souls of too many friends and fighters passing early from our midst in stained times of shadows oppressing the strath and dispiriting fealty.

Ter-sanctus, say we.

Sarry, say you.

Chary-sarry, say they.

Hence, Tersary, say we all.

A melody so plain.

Flits and flies and flits from flit to flit, when they do flitch and flitchen.

By placing thou before us, thou doth say only no more than one third of what we can hear.

Trials and tribulations, stations in the dark, keep trances in dances of blind wills strafing the park. Newsprint dead-stars of whom we study frame by frame till sickness renders plaints of living flame by rhame, riding cue's rent raiment of the stark. No balls in high cotton. Yet cotton halcyoneth high balls. And tamed, ill's candor is stretched to cover the mouth of truth till it falls. The shoots, the pods, the lace, leaves veins in the trace, shod of shoes, notoriety's face. There before, but not now, doors of shame. Show us lost, show us found. Towns go down the lonely ways of cost's lanes winding to green tent hedges along reality's ledges. Staring youthful through scent's mint maze, traces of morning cut lawn, lying strangely flat in rows of a trow-ender's wake's death gaze. Plaidoyer the case of credulous sources. Seldom scenes, truncating wisdom to a microdot flake. Waylaid by the face of sedulous forces. Can we see that which we can't view like a sot's cockatrice drake? When thought's thrice-leet tay ties knots in your shoe. Stand ought nonetheless. For the good of the loo.

He's Satisfied

Is This Attitude Perhaps Explanatory of Something?

From another paper we cull the following remarks, said to have been made by City Policeman C. L. Cordell:

"This town isn't half as mean as it gets credit for being. It's true that Charlotte has had a lot of murders but they were among Negroes. Taking everything into consideration, Charlotte is a good, clean moral city."

Which is very interesting. Negroes, we gather, aren't people, and so not to be taken into consideration in estimating the city.

The fact that the town consumes incredible quantities of alcohol while pretending to be dry, we gather, also has nothing to do with its right to be called "a good, clean moral city."

As we get it, the fact that the numbers racket and others flourish here without any genuine interference doesn't interfere with that claim, either.

Nor does the fact, we assume, that the city is not only eminent for murder but also for nearly all the crimes listed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation ranking not first but very high in all of them.

What we should like to know is this: is the attitude of Policeman Cordell typical of that of the whole police force?

If so, we think we begin to understand some matters better than we have understood them in the past.


Not So Bad

State Taxes Turn Out To Be Not Wide of Income

According to figures published by the University of North Carolina News Letter, North Carolina stands 34th among the states in the per capita tax collected for the support of the State Government, as distinct from local governments, like the counties, cities, etc.

On the face of it that may seem a little out of line with the per capita income in the state. We haven't the figures in hand, but as we recall it North Carolina's position in the income bracket is probably Ol' 42. That is where she usually stands in most things.

But there is a joker in this which must not be overlooked. Mississippi, which stands as 48th in the per capita state tax list, pays only $15.05 per head, whereas North Carolina pays $24.66.

However, North Carolina stands very close to the head of the list of States in which governmental functions are mainly carried out by the State Government rather than other local units. Mississippi, on the other hand, is a state in which local government does almost everything that is done. Moreover, while North Carolina generally ranks as Ol' 42 in accomplishment and services, Mississippi almost invariably ranks as 48th in everything.

Set our roads against Mississippi's, set our magnificent health service against her almost non-existent one, and so on, then total up all the costs of government, State and local, in North Carolina and Mississippi, and you will probably find that we are paying so much more for better results--that we are mainly getting our money's worth--and that it is not as for out of line with our income as we might at first be inclined to think.


Own Enemy

Labor Union Policy Serves Only To Discredit The Unions

As Mr. Clapper suggests, without explicitly saying, in his column today, the agency which is most busily engaged in discrediting the labor union cause in this country at the present time is, precisely, the labor unions.

Jurisdictional strikes which hold up national defense and aid to Britain can have no justification. It is merely a case of labor trying to cut labor's throat. And it disgusts not only those who have been hostile to organized labor all along but also those who have been mostly friendly to it.

It is obvious that no real interest of the laboring man is involved, that it is only a question of one gang of leaders with a vested interest in the collection of dues against another gang of leaders with a vested interest in the collection of dues.

More serious still is the practice of exacting an "initiation fee" of from $25 to $75 from workmen brought into the Army cantonments. These men are not really allowed to join the union, have no vote in the affairs of the locals in the towns where the camps are being built, the same local which collect the fees.

What this comes to is simply a form of cold-blooded extortion--a tax laid by a private agency.

If the unions were bent on arousing general of hostility and engendering laws for their own destruction, they cannot go better about it.


Our Turn

Hitler Opens War of Nerves, To Prepare Way for Japan

It is surely no accident that the long and slow journey of the Japanese Foreign Minister, Matsuoka, toward conference with Hitler at Berlin exactly coincides with the passage of the Lease-Lend Bill at Washington. Nor is in any accident that the minister is very ostentatiously accompanied by military and naval advisers, and that the journey proceeds to the accompaniment of a great outburst of warnings to and denunciations of the United States in the press of Berlin, Rome, and Tokyo.

It is, we may confidently assume, a carefully prearranged psychological move, and one admirably contrived. Instead of old-fashioned immediate retorts and ultimatums, we are to be treated to a war of nerves over days while the train rolls on to Berlin, perhaps stopping at Moscow, long drawn out ceremonial in the Nazi capital, to a steadily rising din of always more ominous warnings and threats and reassurances and offers that if only we are sensible, to the spectacle of elaborate conferences (well photographed and duly printed in our press behind a veil of smiling secrecy, to the stealthy terrible assault of fear of the unknown and the incalculable.)

But there is perhaps more in it than a mere propaganda drive. That is to say, it may not be mere bluff, but may be intended to prepare the way for Japan actually to strike.

By all the rules of logic as we have known them, it would be madness for Japan to allow herself to be led into challenging the United States in the Pacific. It might indeed leave the way clear for Hitler to win the Battle of the Atlantic. But unless we have been grossly betrayed as to the strength of our navy, while he (Hitler) was doing that the Japanese power in the Pacific would be utterly destroyed. And it is by no means certain that Hitler himself would desire it that way. For, supposing our navy to come through the Japanese fight fairly intact and supposing the British Navy to be pretty well destroyed in the Atlantic fight, we should then be in position to assume command of the Atlantic--the last thing he wants.

But all this assumes the virile determination of the United States to defend its interests the moment they are clearly attacked. And that will is by no means certain.

Is it an accident that the move not only coincides with the passage of the Lease-Lend Bill but also with the announced intention of Burton Wheeler and the isolationists in general, including Robert Rice Reynolds, to launch a great barnstorming tour in this country to try to whip up hysteria for peace at any price, for the repudiation of the Administration's foreign policy? Is it an accident that the roar of threats and warnings and cajolements from the Axis capitals will reach their peak just as Wheeler & Co. are screaming loudest that there is no danger, that all we have to do is to be sensible and adopt a policy of appeasement and isolation, abandoning sea power altogether--just when they will be moaning loudest about "plowing every fourth American boy under"?

Surely not. With deadly fatality we are going along the same course of the nations which have already succumbed to Hitler's wiles.

And the blunt fact is that the thing might well work. It might all easily end in complete hysteria, and complete disunity and national paralysis.

If so, then Japan could strike in the East with a certainty of safety--moving by piecemeal as Hitler has always done. First the Dutch East Indies, then Singapore, then Australia, and then India, then the Philippines with ourselves falling back at each step and saying "wait a while, until we are really attacked."


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