The Charlotte News

Wednesday, August 17, 1938


Site Ed. Note: After reading the previous day's culling of the Don Marquis, otherwise deceased, characterization of la cOcKaROacHa, archy, in "It's the Heat" and questioning ourselves on just what that more or less extinct thing hurled across the room precisely was--though some vague boutade from methodology we ourselves employed back in the dim ages before this gadgetry came along we had, but even then we used Scotch--, we decided to do a search for it.

We came up with three hits at Bartleby, all on the same topic, with variations on the theme, a topic Cash often covered himself, Americanism: one being anent this ism being translated into literature in the latter nineteenth century and the postulates for its dearth to that point in the republic's history; a second, from just after the Civil War, on this ism as a vision to come of democracy evolving in all things American, requisite for them to be American, even the army and navy, not just within electoral politics, discussing then democracy's machinations as well as its attainment to the ideal to which theoretically it strives and is inextricably, by definition to maintain itself as such, wedded; and the third on this ism as bred into the individualist to set out to become an individual raised by bootstrapism; excerpts of each of which we liberally clip and post for you below.

1. From "Americanism in Literature", by Thomas Higginson, 1871:

It is perhaps fortunate that there is as yet but little esprit de corps among our writers, so that they receive their best sympathy, not from each other, but from the people. Even the memory of our most original authors, as Thoreau, or Margaret Fuller Ossoli, is apt to receive its sharpest stabs from those of the same guild. When we American writers find grace to do our best, it is not so much because we are sustained by each other, as that we are conscious of a deep popular heart, slowly but surely answering back to ours, and offering a worthier stimulus than the applause of a coterie. If we once lose faith in our audience, the muse grows silent. Even the apparent indifference of this audience to culture and high finish may be in the end a wholesome influence, recalling us to those more important things, compared to which these are secondary qualities. The indifference is only comparative; our public prefers good writing, as it prefers good elocution; but it values energy, heartiness, and action more. The public is right; it is the business of the writer, as of the speaker, to perfect the finer graces without sacrificing things more vital. "She was not a good singer," says some novelist of his heroine, "but she sang with an inspiration such as good singers rarely indulge in." Given those positive qualities, and I think that a fine execution does not hinder acceptance in America, but rather aids it. Where there is beauty of execution alone, a popular audiénce, even in America, very easily goes to sleep. And in such matters, as the French actor, Samson, said to the young dramatist, "sleep is an opinion."

It takes more than grammars and dictionaries to make a literature. "It is the spirit in which we act that is the great matter," Goethe says. Der Geist aus dem wir handelnist das Höchste. Technical training may give the negative merits of style, as an elocutionist may help a public speaker by ridding him of tricks. But the positive force of writing or of speech must come from positive sources,--ardor, energy, depth of feeling or of thought. No instruction ever gave these, only the inspiration of a great soul, a great need, or a great people. We all know that a vast deal of oxygen may go into the style of a man; we see in it not merely what books he has read, what company he has kept, but also the food he eats, the exercise he takes, the air he breathes. And so there is oxygen in the collective literature of a nation, and this vital element proceeds, above all else, from liberty. For want of this wholesome oxygen, the voice of Victor Hugo comes to us uncertain and spasmodic, as of one in an alien atmosphere where breath is pain; for want of it, the eloquent English tones that at first sounded so clear and bell-like now reach us only faint and muffled, and lose their music day by day. It is by the presence of this oxygen that American literature is to be made great. We are lost if we permit this inspiration of our nation's life to sustain only the journalist and the stump-speaker, while we allow the colleges and the books to be choked with the dust of dead centuries and to pant for daily breath...

We talk idly about the tyranny of the ancient classics, as if there were some special peril about it, quite distinct from all other tyrannies. But if a man is to be stunted by the influence of a master, it makes no difference whether that master lived before or since the Christian epoch. One folio volume is as ponderous as another, if it crushes down the tender germs of thought. There is no great choice between the volumes of the Encyclopædia. It is not important to know whether a man reads Homer or Dante: the essential point is whether he believes the world to be young or old; whether he sees as much scope for his own inspiration as if never a book had appeared in the world. So long as he does this, he has the American spirit: no books, no travel, can overwhelm him, for these will only enlarge his thoughts and raise his standard of execution. When he loses this faith, he takes rank among the copyists and the secondary, and no accident can raise him to a place among the benefactors of mankind. He is like a man who is frightened in battle: you cannot exactly blame him, for it may be an affair of the temperament or of the digestion; but you are glad to let him drop to the rear, and to close up the ranks. Fields are won by those who believe in the winning.

2. From an essay titled "Democratic Vistas", November, 1868, from Prose Works, 1892, by Walt Whitman:

Political democracy, as it exists and practically works in America, with all its threatening evils, supplies a training-school for making first-class men. It is life's gymnasium, not of good only, but of all. We try often, though we fall back often. A brave delight, fit for freedom's athletes, fills these arenas, and fully satisfies, out of the action in them, irrespective of success. Whatever we do not attain, we at any rate attain the experiences of the fight, the hardening of the strong campaign, and throb with currents of attempt at least. Time is ample. Let the victors come after us. Not for nothing does evil play its part among us. Judging from the main portions of the history of the world, so far, justice is always in jeopardy, peace walks amid hourly pitfalls, and of slavery, misery, meanness, the craft of tyrants and the credulity of the populace, in some of their protean forms, no voice can at any time say, They are not. The clouds break a little, and the sun shines out--but soon and certain the lowering darkness falls again, as if to last forever. Yet is there an immortal courage and prophecy in every sane soul that cannot, must not, under any circumstances, capitulate. Vive, the attack--the perennial assault! Vive, the unpopular cause--the spirit that audaciously aims--the never-abandon'd efforts, pursued the same amid opposing proofs and precedents.

Once, before the war, (Alas! I dare not say how many times the mood has come!) I, too, was fill'd with doubt and gloom. A foreigner, an acute and good man, had impressively said to me, that day--putting in form, indeed, my own observations: "I have travel'd much in the United States, and watch'd their politicians, and listen'd to the speeches of the candidates, and read the journals, and gone into the public houses, and heard the unguarded talk of men. And I have found your vaunted America honeycomb'd from top to toe with infidelism, even to itself and its own programme. I have mark'd the brazen hell-faces of secession and slavery gazing defiantly from all the windows and doorways. I have everywhere found, primarily, thieves and scalliwags arranging the nominations to offices, and sometimes filling the offices themselves. I have found the north just as full of bad stuff as the south. Of the holders of public office in the Nation or the States or their municipalities, I have found that not one in a hundred has been chosen by any spontaneous selection of the outsiders, the people, but all have been nominated and put through by little or large caucuses of the politicians, and have got in by corrupt rings and electioneering, not capacity or desert. I have noticed how the millions of sturdy farmers and mechanics are thus the helpless supple-jacks of comparatively few politicians. And I have noticed more and more, the alarming spectacle of parties usurping the government, and openly and shamelessly wielding it for party purposes."

Sad, serious, deep truths. Yet are there other, still deeper, amply confronting, dominating truths. Over those politicians and great and little rings, and over all their insolence and wiles, and over the powerfulest parties, looms a power, too sluggish maybe, but ever holding decisions and decrees in hand, ready, with stern process, to execute them as soon as plainly needed--and at times, indeed, summarily crushing to atoms the mightiest parties, even in the hour of their pride.

In saner hours, far different are the amounts of these things from what, at first sight, they appear. Though it is no doubt important who is elected governor, mayor, or legislator, (and full of dismay when incompetent or vile ones get elected, as they sometimes do,) there are other, quieter contingencies, infinitely more important. Shams, &c., will always be the show, like ocean's scum; enough, if waters deep and clear make up the rest. Enough, that while the piled embroider'd shoddy gaud and fraud spreads to the superficial eye, the hidden warp and weft are genuine, and will wear forever. Enough, in short, that the race, the land which could raise such as the late rebellion, could also put it down.

The average man of a land at last only is important. He, in these States, remains immortal owner and boss, deriving good uses, somehow, out of any sort of servant in office, even the basest; (certain universal requisites, and their settled regularity and protection, being first secured,) a nation like ours, in a sort of geological formation state, trying continually new experiments, choosing new delegations, is not served by the best men only, but sometimes more by those that provoke it--by the combats they arouse. Thus national rage, fury, discussion, &c., better than content. Thus, also, the warning signals, invaluable for after times.

What is more dramatic than the spectacle we have seen repeated, and doubtless long shall see--the popular judgment taking the successful candidates on trial in the offices--standing off, as it were, and observing them and their doings for a while, and always giving, finally, the fit, exactly due reward? I think, after all, the sublimest part of political history, and its culmination, is currently issuing from the American people. I know nothing grander, better exercise, better digestion, more positive proof of the past, the triumphant result of faith in human kind, than a well-contested American national election.

(So, seeing as how it is now high time to heat up the old biennial national campaign grid-iron again, let us have at it in that fondest of American democratic traditions, say to hell with all those freakish sycophants of stodgy stoogism as doing only obeisance to the dog of fascist mentality, those who for their continued economic will and sustenance want always to pass on to us guilt over anything less than that which is nice and tidy, neat British stiff-upper-lipped starched collars and the like; rather, then, let's get back to the business of being recognizably Americans and give each other, at least for the next 50 days or so before mid-term elections, the almighty hell we all most indubitably deserve, and unreservedly so. This in fact being more or less derivative of the tradition born of the prairie, the eidolon of the cycle, the letting loose of inhibitions once in that cycle, upon which release the return then to the business of governing democratically afterward--as opposed to governing by fascist fisticuffs all the time in its absence. So let us then, in the name of Walt Whitman and everything else which is the stock of that we call American, have at it again.)

Did you, too, O friend, suppose democracy was only for elections, for politics, and for a party name? I say democracy is only of use there that it may pass on and come to its flower and fruits in manners, in the highest forms of interaction between men, and their beliefs--in religion, literature, colleges, and schools--democracy in all public and private life, and in the army and navy. (ftnt. 2) I have intimated that, as a paramount scheme, it has yet few or no full realizers and believers. I do not see, either, that it owes any serious thanks to noted propagandists or champions, or has been essentially help'd, though often harm'd, by them. It has been and is carried on by all the moral forces, and by trade, finance, machinery, intercommunications, and, in fact, by all the developments of history, and can no more be stopp'd than the tides, or the earth in its orbit. Doubtless, also, it resides, crude and latent, well down in the hearts of the fair average of the American-born people, mainly in the agricultural regions. But it is not yet, there or anywhere, the fully-receiv'd, the fervid, the absolute faith.

I submit, therefore, that the fruition of democracy, on aught like a grand scale, resides altogether in the future. As, under any profound and comprehensive view of the gorgeous-composite feudal world, we see in it, through the long ages and cycles of ages, the results of a deep, integral, human and divine principle, or fountain, from which issued laws, ecclesia, manners, institutes, costumes, personalities, poems, (hitherto unequall'd,) faithfully partaking of their source, and indeed only arising either to betoken it, or to furnish parts of that varied-flowing display, whose centre was one and absolute--so, long ages hence, shall the due historian or critic make at least an equal retrospect, an equal history for the democratic principle. It too must be adorn'd, credited with its results--then, when it, with imperial power, through amplest time, has dominated mankind--has been the source and test of all the moral, esthetic, social, political, and religious expressions and institutes of the civilized world--has begotten them in spirit and in form, and has carried them to its own unprecedented heights--has had, (it is possible,) monastics and ascetics, more numerous, more devout than the monks and priests of all previous creeds--has sway'd the ages with a breadth and rectitude tallying Nature's own--has fashion'd, systematized, and triumphantly finish'd and carried out, in its own interest, and with unparallel'd success, a new earth and a new man.

Note 2. The whole present system of the officering and personnel of the army and navy of these States, and the spirit and letter of their trebly-aristocratic rules and regulations, is a monstrous exotic, a nuisance and revolt, and belong here just as much as orders of nobility, or the Pope's council of cardinals. I say if the present theory of our army and navy is sensible and true, then the rest of America is an unmitigated fraud.

3. Returning to the coincidences about which laid "From the Clouds" to the paper, we found also in the same search The Making of an American, "Working and Wandering", 1901, by Jacob Riis, on the striving of the individualist to become whatever it is he is to become within this ism:

I walked day and night, pursued in the dark by a hundred skulking curs that lurked behind trees until I came abreast of them and then sallied out to challenge my progress. I stoned them and went on. Monday's setting sun saw me outside Buffalo, tired, but with a new purpose. I had walked fifty miles without stopping or eating. I slept under a shed that night, and the very next day found work at good wages on some steamers the Erie Railroad was then building for the Lake Superior trade. With intervals of other employment when for any reason work in the ship-yard was slack, I kept that up all winter, and became quite opulent, even to the extent of buying a new suit of clothes, the first I had had since I landed. I paid off all my debts, and quarrelled with all my friends about religion. I never had any patience with a person who says "there is no God." The man is a fool, and therefore cannot be reasoned with. But in those days I was set on converting him, as my viking forefathers did when from heathen they became Christians--by fire and sword if need be. I smote the infidels about me hip and thigh, but there were a good many of them, and they kept springing up, to my great amazement. Probably the constant warfare imparted a tinge of fierceness to that whole period of my life, for I remember that one of my employers, a Roman Catholic builder, discharged me for disagreeing with him about the saints, telling me that I was "too blamed independent, anyhow." I suspect I must have been a rather unlovely customer, take it all together. Still, every once in a while it boils up in me yet against the discretion that has come with the years, and I want to slam in after the old fashion. Seems to me we are in danger of growing stale with all our soft speeches nowadays.

Things enough happened to take down my self-esteem a good many pegs. It was about this time I made up my mind to go into the newspaper business. It seemed to me that a reporter's was the highest and noblest of all callings; no one could sift wrong from right as he, and punish the wrong. In that I was right. I have not changed my opinion on that point one whit, and I am sure I never shall. The power of fact is the mightiest lever of this or of any day. The reporter has his hand upon it, and it is his grievous fault if he does not use it well. I thought I would make a good reporter. My father had edited our local newspaper, and such little help as I had been of to him had given me a taste for the business. Being of that mind, I went to the Courier office one morning and asked for the editor. He was not in. Apparently nobody was. I wandered through room after room, all empty, till at last I came to one in which sat a man with a paste-pot and a pair of long shears. This must be the editor; he had the implements of his trade. I told him my errand while he clipped away.

"What is it you want?" he asked, when I had ceased speaking and waited for an answer.

"Work," I said.

"Work!" said he, waving me haughtily away with the shears; "we don't work here. This is a newspaper office."

I went, abashed. I tried the Express next. This time I had the editor pointed out to me. He was just coming through the business office. At the door I stopped him and preferred my request. He looked me over, a lad fresh from the shipyard, with horny hands and a rough coat, and asked:--

"What are you?"

"A carpenter," I said.

The man turned upon his heel with a loud, rasping laugh and shut the door in my face. For a moment I stood there stunned. His ascending steps on the stairs brought back my senses. I ran to the door, and flung it open. "You laugh!" I shouted, shaking my fist at him, standing halfway up the stairs, "you laugh now, but wait--" And then I got the grip of my temper and slammed the door in my turn. All the same, in that hour it was settled that I was to be a reporter. I knew it as I went out into the street.

So, there you have it, three views of this ism, all hung around a search for one word culled from Cash's culling.

Now, get ye out of here, you la cOcKaROacHa, lest we throw the word at you again, Chan-Chan!


Mr. J. Spencer Bell, manager of the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, strikes straight down the alley of our own pet notions when he tells the local Lions Club that "most of the thousands of dollars spent here annually for musical education is wasted," and that "most of the ones who study music should confine themselves to learning it from a listener's viewpoint."

The case can no doubt be made out for the theory that some elementary knowledge of an instrument is a very desirable basis for beginning to understand music from the listener's viewpoint. And, of course, anybody who actually wants to learn an instrument for his own private enjoyment ought to be encouraged--unless, indeed, he lives in an apartment house.

But by and large, the concern with learning to play instruments is merely a hangover from the nineteenth-century cult of the Young Lady. The staid young person sat in the parlor on Winter evenings and played tinkling little tunes to polite and patient swains, who did their best to look entranced. And it was supposed to make her very valuable for the soothing of a tired husband, when and if he she acquired one. But the custom is as remote from the actual conditions of our age as the customs of the Fourth Egyptian Dynasty. And, to be candid about it, nobody ever did really enjoy listening with his ears to the Young Lady at the Piano. All the persistence of the cult does is to breed a lot of very bad mechanical players, who never have any use for their supposed accomplishments, and who usually know less about the music of the great tradition than an organ grinder.

Site Ed. Note: Oh, here comes the little death-head's creature yet again, ye cross-boned squire's-mire scarabaeus-- So, while about beating the band, we would be remiss to paste up the fact that once, in the fourth grade 'twas, a pleasant fellow with a broad grin and a sardonic sense of himself and others, obviously, came about our school, room to room, hunting up volunteers for his school band class. We only had to choose our instrument for the endeavor and we were in the club. Now, what was it we wanted to learn? We looked through the catalogue. The strings were out, for they were not part of the band per se, relegated to a separate class altogether. And our double-dip favorite of all, the long-necker without a bow, picked with the fretted fingers, whether bare-fleshed pinked or with the clickety of the plectrum, pervaded with the odor of fine-rubbed finishing along the mahogany or ash curves, what have you, we hadn't even the least opportunity in either case, as they, too, weren't part of the band. So, our sphere from which to make choice was circumscribed by brass, woodwinds, percussion. Percussion in our soul, yes, but too accessible, too much the thing of pedestrian fealty. Any here among us could take out a pencil and tap the ring-binder's blue canvas 'til it bled itself ragged, with taps, af' all. Woodwinds?--ah, no, no, far too prissy, keen to our hears, but for us to finger was far, far too confined a task. We weren't cut to be a flautist. Ah, now, that left brass. Perfectly contrasting with our external quietude, put however in strident suit to the inner turbine where all was churning fast and mighty the plaintive dirge, the exultant radiant--brass, brass, ah. Which one, though of the four choices provided should we? (We didn't have access to the circ-tubes, as they were far too cumbersome for little tykes such as ourselves.) The slider seemed to us a little indefinite as to definition of position constituting the stops to provide that being emitted. We needed definition in those days, something by which to cling, so fast was the churning. That was out, the slider, therefore, though we liked its basic construction. The three-fingered duo?--seemed much too simple to master, with only three fingers from which to choose. Though they were kind-hearted dollies, whether muffled or full-throated. Besides, whenever, in our experience, we puffed our cheeks we found it immensely discomforting, as if our head were about to explode in the bargain. To boot, they were much too stubby and light. Thus. Ah, the choice had narrowed now. And what a choice. This was it-- that fine brass tube with the serpentine curve kewling, ophicleide-like, around at the bottom, a piece of pulchritudinous splendour if ever there was, this brassy thing. And all the buttons, pearly buttons, lots and lots to choose from, enough to occupy both hands, no less. (And what better way to maintain from the idle, with which we know not what it might do otherwise?) This, this, then, was an instrument with which to wield--glory. What is more, our papa had tried his hands at it when in school as well. Thus 'twas pluperfect in the service. Tradition! So, we marched ourselves, positively, down to the Conn store on Fourth Street, our papa and mama in tow, and proceeded to pick us out the finest Conn we could afford, even if a little used for our impecunity, nevertheless a fine brassy Conn. We were mightily excited by its smoothness and, what's more, we could see ourselves in the bell. --And so, to make a long one shorter, for the next six years, through fall leaves in the rakish curves, wind in the pane, rain dribbling through the reeded gutter, winter snows freezing our booties like ice, and spring breezes through the sheltering warmth of the tree leaves rushing by, as Aprils ticked to Mays, back then to each again that ever-dreaded September, we tried mightily to learn to manipulate this smooth, pulchritudinous brassy thing to our will, mightily, mightily we tried. Alas, however, we came to the conclusion that, for ourselves, at least, it was of the type of practice which the inditement above relegates to the waste bin of musical genius. Alas, again, we had to put down our Conn, finally, and concede by the time about which high school came, that we were but meant to play no more than one musical Conn chord, that of listener. Yet, for it, that participation for six years, we hasten to add, that musical experience in band, we think the middle bridge above summarizes perfectly our own thus inculcated--a definite sense, without which not we would likely endowed be aught, bereft of any full conception otherwise of that which simply goes: every good boy (or girl, in another key) does fine. So, while we didn't learn to play much of any but what might pass on occasion as contemporary jazz swung by the Owl and the Pussycat, most definitely of the most extemporized, and probably inimitable, let alone in time unduplicateable, form, at least with any celerious continuity, that is--for living in an apartment house, we could scarcely practice at times long save in sounds of silence, with great rest, which, in truth, did not lend itself so well to this particular piece of brass, which, in turns, is why we rested in sly-silence during audition as well--we did learn at least one thing about music and musicianship. It goes...

Along With the Tide

Back in 1932, Mecklenburg County's tax rate was 55 cents, and if you took off the 16.4-cent school tax, which the State got, the net County rate was only 38.6 cents. And the revenue produced by this levy, $346,000 was earmarked for general charity, which was an alarming jump over the $34,663 expended for that purpose the year before.

That year 1932 was a hard one, messires, and it got harder as it unrolled. But look ye at the County tax rate for the last half of 1938 and the first of 1939! From 55 cents in 1932 (38.6 net), it is up to 86 cents, all of which is net. The poor fund is up to a dizzy $369,461, in addition to which there is an item of $44,772 for old age assistance, and another item of $24,780 for aid to dependent children. If you eliminate debt service, half of the County's budget is for charitable purposes.

It is the New Dispensation, of course, and speaking on behalf of the recipients, we can say positively that it is welcome. And as for the property owners who provide the wherewithal, they are dismayed but unprotesting. They are very much like the County Commissioners who made the appropriations and fixed the rate--they dislike it but, pinching where they can, they can't help it. About all they can do is to go off and hope that somehow some day everything is going to turn out all right.

Small Potatoes

A man yesterday told the House committee investigating un-American activities that there were six major menaces to democracy at work in the United States. He named them in this order: communism, socialism, nazism, anarchism, ultra-pacifism and atheism; and to back up his choice of communism for the leading menace, he prepared to prove that the Communist Central Committee had spent in the United States more than $700,000 for propaganda and organization activity in the last two years. He showed the intent Congressmen a billboard, 60 feet long by eight feet wide, bearing hundreds of pieces of what he called "red periodicals" published in America.

The extent of the communistic leaning in this country no man knows. Several CIO unions are commonly reputed to be pretty closely allied with the Reds, but there again no man can tell for sure. About the only reliable, statistical information on hand is that in 1936 the Communist Party's Presidential candidate polled a measly 50,159 votes out of more than 45,000,000. And as for the $700,000 the fellow avers the Communist Central Committee has spent in two years, it isn't much more than John L. Lewis and his United Mine Workers spent on Roosevelt in one year.

And as for the 60 x 6 billboard decorated with hundreds of pieces of Red literature--shucks! Frank Gannett, the newspaper publisher who singly took on the court bill and the reorganization bill, at one time was sending that much through the mails every week.

A communist menace there may be in this country, but it appears pathetically picayunish and impecunious in comparison with 100 percent American institutions.

Kettle's Retort

"Invasion of territory of sovereign states, destruction of lawfully constituted governments and forcible seizure of hitherto independent political activities, interference in the internal affairs of other nations, wholesale violations of established treaty obligations, growing disregard of universally accepted principles of international law, attempts to adjust international differences by armed force rather than by methods of pacific settlement, contemptuous brushing aside of rules of morality..."

It is a terrific indictment, this which Mr. Hull yesterday brought against Japan, Italy, and, above all at this moment, Germany. But all of them will undoubtedly retort at once that it is only a case of the pot and the kettle. More than that, they'll be able to make out a pretty good case merely by citing the record. The Mexican War and annexation of Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico was a case very much like that of the Sudeten Germans--constituted an "invasion of territory of a sovereign state," and "seizure of hitherto independent political entities." Our conduct in Haiti, Nicaragua, etc. surely amounted to an "attempt to adjust international differences by armed force" and "interference in the internal affairs of other nations." In the suppression of Aguinaldo's rebellion we indubitably disregarded "accepted principles of international law," as did the national government in the Civil War. And if it be true, as is sometimes charged, that McKinley made the Spanish War for political reasons, then we may be justly taxed even with "contemptuous brushing aside the rules of morality."

But Aces Are Aces

But two things at least can be said in answer: (1) that we at least never adopted these things as open and boasted principles of conduct, and (2) that we have at length pretty well reformed our ways.

To that last, it will certainly be responded that we have reformed our ways, as the British and French have at least partly reformed theirs, only after we have got all we wanted, that all our high protestations about loving peace simply means what the French and British protestations meant: that, having hogged everything in sight, we want to be left alone in the enjoyment of it; and that the methods of Japan, Italy, and Germany are necessary to readjust the balance.

But in connection with that it is interesting to notice that Mr. Hull said something else yesterday, too--that, in effect, he warned that, in case of another great war, it is unlikely that the United States can stay out of it. And that warning puts a very different face on things. You can, if you like, make out some case for the notion that the antics of Hitler, for one, have been necessary to make the old allied powers realize that they couldn't go ahead forever starving Germany to death. But if you accept that, and the doctrine that only force counts, isn't it still about time Mr. Hitler hauled up and paid heed to Dr. Hull? With things as they now are, doesn't he stand to gain a lot more in the end by the route which Hull indicates than by risking a war with France, Britain, Russia, and quite likely the United States? A war he has no chance to win?

He who sets up to play the bully to the bitter end had better make sure that he is the stoutest man in sight.

Site Ed. Note: We had pretty well reformed our ways, that is, until March, 2003--when we went from Aces high to Snake Eyes low--in the desert storm. Oh, what a family...

Read about the rest of the isms of the day, here.

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