The Charlotte News

Friday, April 21, 1939


Site Ed. Note: We hereby grant your access to the entire editorial page of this date, including an editorial cartoon--well--which might well be right out of today's more candid newspapers(?)

Incidentally, to offer response to Mr. Graves's most puzzling queries on that page, the demonstrable answers are these, obvious leas: Gimghoulies and Buttonsies. Augen frontseite! (Shhhhhh. Only Chapel Hilligans of olde truly know.)

And, if you are unfamiliar with Punchinello, he once had a publication all to himself, the first page of which like this him showed:

Grocery Boy

In Which H. Alger Jr. Has To Be Modified

In the Associated Press story of the appointment of Alexander Waddell as envoy to Spain, we find it set down that as a boy in Richmond he worked for a grocery store at $2.30 a week. All of which suggests the good old Horatio Alger-standard American formula of "From Rags to Riches"--from Ben Franklin with the loaf of bread in the streets of Philadelphia, to Dr. Franklin, the darling of the salons of Paris.

And far be it from us to disappoint anybody by arguing that the thing doesn't still happen. There is Douglas, J., for instance, pleased to sell newspapers when he was a boy and who slept out in the fields when he went to college. But in Mr. Waddell's case, we fear that it is more legend than not--a sort of curious correlative legend to test one which has it that the Old South swarmed with aristocrats.

Waddell actually belonged to an excellent established Virginia family. His father was an Episcopalian minister, important enough to be dubbed D.D. And the boy himself was sent to George Washington University and then to the University of Catania and Lausanne. Poor his people probably were, but only in the sense of genteel poverty. And most of his life has been spent as a career diplomat--an occupation open only to those with satisfactory [indiscernible word] background and the means to explain themselves in style.

To understand that grocery boy episode, you have to remember that all the upper crust in Dixie was affected with poverty when he was growing up--that it was felt imperative for even the highest to make every penny possible by any honest means--and that working as a grocery boy or something of the kind was the rule rather than the exception. And perhaps that makes the story all the more to his credit.

No Answers*

Public Weal Frames Pointed Questions

That's an embarrassing list of questions the Public Weal has prepared to ask in its soiree this evening. To the Mayor and the incumbent City Councilmen who are running for re-election, it has intended to put these squirmers:

Why were the 10-cent cabs reinstated with less bond of insurance protection to the public than when they were removed?

Were you present at the so-called hotel conference of certain Councilmen, of which it is said that a dictagraph record was made? If so, state what was discussed and what took place at the conference?

To Mayor Douglas alone was to have been propounded this query:

Explain in detail the so-called "land deal." Has the property been conveyed back to the City and the $800 profit refunded?

As it turns out, however, the Mayor and Councilmen have a previous engagement. They are going to meet together in the interest of their candidacies, had scheduled the meeting long before the Public Weal's invitation was issued. And that may be a political necessity, what with the primary coming on apace, but we can think of nothing more nicely calculated to get votes by wholesale than, for such of the candidates addressed who can look the Public Weal in the face and answer its questions, to break their group engagement, attend and speak up to the point.

Another Laurel*

In The Wreath Of The Champ Tar Heel Server

As we have said before, the all-time North Carolina championship for serving on committees, commissions, boards, bodies, associations, groups, unions, leagues, synods, organizations, councils, and for being identified with movements, causes, policies, undertakings, activities and what-have-you--belongs beyond the shadow of a doubt to Frank Porter Graham, president of the Greater University of North Carolina. Just as on the menu of any respectable restaurant in the Old Dominion you are sure to encounter Virginia Ham, and, by the same token, Maryland Fried Chicken in the environs of the Free State, so on a roster of distinguished citizens called together for this, that or the other laudable purposes you may be sure of spotting the name of Dr. Frank P. Graham, president of the University of North Carolina. The man is clearly magnetic to appointments.

Hence, it was not at all with astonishment, but only a sense of inevitability, that this week we ran across the dispatch appended below:

WASHINGTON, April 18--(AP)--

President Roosevelt has appointed five university presidents and another educator to a board of visitors to make an annual inspection of the Naval Academy at Annapolis. Appointed by the President was... Dr. Frank P. Graham, president of the University of North Carolina...

Punchinello Has His Day

Comedy Is Prevailing Note On Lord Hitler's Natal Anniversary, But Serious Things Are Done, Too

Yesterday was, among other things, a day of comedy--a little grim--in Europe. Lord Mussolini puffed out the news that if he and his hyperborean pal were "cherishing obscure aggressive designs," the Italians wouldn't be planning a world's fair in 1942! Probably the finest jest in that is the word "obscure." Nobody, of course, has ever accused the dictators of having obscure aggressive designs--save insofar as it was obscure where they would strike next. For the rest, their purpose of aggression is plain as day, having been repeatedly demonstrated in practice.

In Poland, in a place quaintly named Katowlee, some bank clerks paid honor to Lord Hitler's fiftieth birthday by contributing some fifty-odd bucks with which to buy bullets to shoot his soldiers if they get funny with Poland.

In Berlin, Colonel-General Goering, successor to Von Moltke and Von Hindenburg as Field Marshal of Germany, described Adolf Hitler as "the Greatest German," while the subject of that tribute smirked and struck the old Napoleon's pose of gazing with rapt and psychic eyes upon the certain shape of the future.

As the crowning comedy it was revealed that the Greatest German would ask the little Balkan nations whether or not they considered themselves menaced by Germany, by way of arranging a reply to Mr. Roosevelt. Little-cats-already-in-the-bag Hungary and Bulgaria are to be asked, and so are Yugoslavia and maybe Rumania and Greece. Dick Turpin sticks his gun into his victim's side, palms away the latter's pocketbook, and growls: "What's this, I hear, Jack, about you being afraid I might be a highwayman with designs on your pocketbook? That isn't so, is it? Come now!" And, "Why, nossir, Mr. Turpin," says the victim, "why, nossir! I never dreamed of saying or thinking anything so wicked as that! I trust you with all my heart, sir, and never, never would suspect you of doing anything that wasn't nice!"

But yesterday was more than a day of comedy. Adolf Hitler didn't move to seize Danzig as he had been advertised to do. And Lord Mussolini, for all his champing and stomping, roared fairly softly. Neither great man, it may be safely surmised, was altogether happy, even as they sought to intimidate the little nations and break them out of the British bloc with their show of arms. That man Roosevelt's shadow hung over it all, and he could well afford to smile at the epithets heaped upon him, for it was plain that for the day at least he had succeeded in making them think it over. Moreover, the very moment they were exhibiting their arms to the Balkan pawns, the effect of it was being largely canceled out by the news that the Russian bear had climbed down from the fence and was offering Britain and France a full alliance.

Chamberlain will hardly be able to refuse that now--provided the Russians can give convincing evidence of their good faith. For such an alliance has been what Turkey has been demanding as the price of her own entry into the British bloc. And without Turkey and Russia, "encirclement" is almost certain to fail. With them, it is fairly likely to succeed. For the little Balkan nations simply want, cannily and reasonably enough, to be sure of getting on the side with the most power and the better chance of winning. There are plenty of difficulties in the way yet, of course, but once the primary power line-up is insured, they probably can be smoothed out.

Site Ed. Note: "Fu'nera plango, ful'gura frango, sab'bata pango, Ex'cito lentos, dis'sipo ventos, paco cruentos."


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