The Charlotte News

Friday, January 7, 1938


Site Ed. Note: Just think, the Fayetteville Observer tells us today--why, just think: anotha yeea and the Civil Woa will be won! For the Yankee has no moa aumy to last than for anotha yeea, what with all the casualties, dese'tas, and stragglas. And with no moa aumy to raise beyond those currently in se'vice, just think, Scawlett. One moa yeea and the woa will be won! Come next January 1, we shall all be in high cotton a-gain!

By the way, dea' Scawlett, have you arranged for the substitute so that your dearest will not have to soil his hands with such base endeavas as military se'vitude? Some of these soldie's ah so disgusting as to be positively uncivilized men of the lowest awda imaginable. Darest we think not what might come should you' dea'ly beloved have to go and fight amongst them. You would not wish an animal to return home, Scawlett. So, heya, take these lettas fo'thwith to the musta sawgeant in Rawleigh, and speak lightly to him, for he is a dea' friend in whose presence you will shine.

Dea' Scawlett, why do you look so pale?

Yes, that is precisely it. You, Scawlett.

Now come, come, do not bellow so. You will be fine amongst all those lonely soldie's. They, no doubt, shall esteem you' company amid theyas and be so magnified by you' effulgent presence as to be positively indued with so much the moa bravery to win the woa that much quicka. Go, go in haste. Foa the fate of ouwa young nation hangs most tenuously upon you' delicate sholdas.

Greetings From the IRB

Form 1040 of Federal income tax blanks, receipt of which is hereby gratefully acknowledged--well, acknowledged, anyhow--has been much simplified since last year. For one thing, it is only about three-quarters as long. Maybe it will even go into a typewriter carriage without being scalloped along the edges. Column rules for cents, hundreds of dollars, thousands of dollars and millions of dollars, which last the average man seldom had to bother with, have been removed, leaving but one line to set off dollars from cents. There still remain the many parenthetical injunctions, such as "Explain in Schedule G;" "From Line W in Schedule F;" "Attach Separate Schedule If Necessary;" but the schedules themselves have been made intelligible and, what is better, roomy. Schedule F, covering gains and losses from sales or exchanges of property, is a notable example. There is plenty of space on this year's blanks, whereas last year it was every transaction for itself, and the auditors to guess at the hindmost.

But at the bottom of the return, there is the same old bad news. It is instantly recognizable:

21. Net income (item 20 above) __________

22. Less: Personal exemption ___________

24. Balance (for surtax) ________________

25. Earned income credit _______________

27. Balance (for normal tax) ____________

28. Normal tax (6% of item 27) __________

29. Surtax on item 24 __________________

30. Total tax _________________________

Cash _______ Check ______ M. O. ______

A Rugged Individualist

Henry Hartwell Brown, who was run over and killed by an automobile last night, was a man who stood on his own two feet and never asked for quarter. If the blind chance that governs man's contemporary period had set him down a lean young fellow in Civil War times, he'd have been found somewhere out near the front, bearing a squirrel rifle or the next best weapon, popping off Yankees whenever a head showed itself, wiping his mouth on the back of his hand and grimly cutting another notch on his gun stock. In any company charge, Brown would have gone first and farther, contemptuous of the flying bullets, a-hollerin' his head off with that terrifying Rebel yell.

As it was, he never knew eminence or came close to distinction. He was merely one of that great tribe of Americans, reputed to be vanishing, who make their own way without asking or expecting aid. He invented his own last job, which was to guard the houses of Fourth Ward residents--the Nisbets, the Harrises, the Dunns and other householders of the neighborhood--from six o'clock in the evening until six in the morning, at so much a week from each. At 68, night in and night out, he patroled his beat, lonely, perhaps, but unafraid, and scornful of this newfangled mass salvation, Relief. He was his own WPA, only he operated under the initials HHB.

Changing the Subject

On this page today there is reported, or will be as soon as there is the right sort of space for it, an excerpt from a New York Times editorial, the gist of which is that this country cannot afford annual Federal expenditures of seven billion dollars, that income never has amounted to so much in normal times, and that if there is to come to pass any such thing as a balanced budget, the "thinking people" of the country will have to make known their insistence if they would offset the influence of the pressure groups which don't care what happens to the budget so long as they get theirs.

Elsewhere in the public prints we have run across a letter from Governor Hoey to Secretary of Agriculture Wallace viewing with alarm the suggestion of curtailed Federal appropriations for state highway aid. It would, the Governor said, "very seriously interfere with the whole road program in North Carolina."

Somehow, there seems to be a definite connection between the two paragraphs foregoing. However, since acceptance of The Times argument would compel us to classify Governor Hoey as a thinking person and to put down the State of North Carolina as component part of a pressure group, we believe the most diplomatic course to take is to call off the whole discussion and talk about something else.

Odious Comparison

For our own good reasons, and incidentally to please Mr. Kuester, let's assume that the population of this, the Friendly City, is exactly 100,000. It probably isn't, quite, but never mind. Put it down as 100,000. Now, the number of murders that Charlotte had in 1937 will be at the same time the rate of murder per 100,000 of population. Do you see?

With 27 murders last year, which was an improvement over the year before, we'll call Charlotte's murder rate 27. And would you like to know how this compares with the 1937 rate in other cities having 100,000 or more population? Well, we can't tell you, for the reason that the comparative figures haven't been compiled yet, and for the additional reason that when the figures are compiled they will lump together both murders and non-negligent homicides. The Charlotte figures take murders alone into consideration.

But we can give you a pretty good idea. The ten-year average of our sister cities, including both murders and non-negligent homicides, is 10 and a fraction per 100,000. Charlotte's in 1937, for murders alone, was 27 per 100,000 population that it didn't quite have. The rate would increase, of course, in proportion to the deficiency in population, but at 27 it is nearly three times the national average, and that's bad enough.

Where Are Their Manners?

They had really a whopping celebration in Greenwood, S. C., Wednesday night, to celebrate the Victory of Buzzards Roost. The 263rd Coast Artillery Band, National Guard, started things off with several "stirring marches." The president of the Greenwood Chamber of Commerce then took charge of the mass meeting, and he made a happy speech, at the end of it introducing the mayor, who made a speech praising Franklin D. Roosevelt, at the end it introducing the mayor of Ninety-Six, who told of Franklin D. Roosevelt's and Secretary Ickes' unflagging interest in the project. One by one a succession of people important in their own right or by some connection with the project and the litigation attending it, were called on to say a little say, most of them ringing in Franklin D. Roosevelt, until as a climax the Governor of the State of South Carolina, the Honorable Olin B. Johnston, was presented to the audience amid cheers and applause. Said Governor Johnston:

"When I get to Washington, I'm going over to the White House and thank the President for blessing my state."

More cheers, the which we do not begrudge the Governor or President Roosevelt in the slightest. Yet, even so, didn't they every last one forget the fellow who will be principally responsible for the materialization of a power plant at Buzzards Roost, the fellow who has already paid for the preliminary work, the engineering and for research and the long litigation? The fellow who in the end will hand over a $657,000 outright gift and a loan of $2,195,000 to Greenwood County, the fellow who made all this possible--the Hon. John Q. Taxpayer? Doesn't John deserve a cheer or two, or at least a cordial mention? After all, it is John who will foot the bill.

Freely, At Their Own Risk

The much-extolled constitution which Papa Stalin gave to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics seems to be, in practice, a document consisting almost totally of checks and precious few balances. For example, the latest installment of Russia's serial mass killings was the shooting of eight officials of Soviet Armenia. The charge against them was conspiracy to bring about the secession of Armenia from the Soviet Union.

But it is specifically set forth in the new Constitution that any constituent republic shall have the right "freely to secede," just as British dominions have the right to withdraw from the Empire if they choose. Ah, but these Russo-Armenian plotters were accused of a design to set up the seceded state as a protectorate of some foreign power, unnamed. Besides, if that count were insufficient, the OGPU had evidence, good enough to be admitted in any council of big-wig Communists, that the defendants had poisoned tens of thousands of cattle and had impeded the government's efforts to increase crops. They were taken out and shot.

From this distance it appears, constitution or no constitution, that it is yet still vitally necessary in the land of Stalin to belong to the right lodge and to stand in with the right people.

Framed Edition
[Return to Links-Page by Subject] [Return to Links-Page by Date] [Return to News<i><i>--</i></i>Framed Edition]
Links-Date -- Links-Subj.

') } //--