The Charlotte News

Tuesday, April 16, 1940


Site Ed. Note: "Corporationality": Not too many have it today.

Ivey's still survives in Charlotte while most locally owned department stores have long ago perished from the scene in most places, to be replaced by the corporationistas, that is those who say to you, "May I help you?" with a look in the eye suggestive that if you were to be so brash and daring as not to respond or to respond in some manner less than enthusiastically, the corporatista security force would descend upon you and give you the rubber hose treatment in the back room for thirty minutes until you confess all manner of sins against God, country, and mother.

This, then, being the age of corporationistas.

These days, of course, one is very fortunate to be able to contact a live person at all among the corporationistas. More likely: "Hello, I am happy to help you. Here are your menu choices. Please listen carefully as our menu choices change by the minute. To hear these instructions in English, press '666'; to hear them in Spanish, say 'andale'; to hear them in Tagalog, say 'pineapple' three times in rapid succession; to hear them in Chinese, say 'number one son'; to hear them in Japanese, say 'yo, what's up with this?' Okay. English, right? Press '1' for 'yes' and '14583' for 'no'. Okay. Let's begin: Press '1' to be told what to do when you press '2'; press '2' to be scolded for not pressing '1'; press '3' if you are tired of pressing '1' or '2'; press '4' if you are in need of medication; press '5' if you would like to curse; press '0' to find out why our menu options just changed and you must call again. Thank you and have a nice day. Goodbye."

And did you ever realize J. Edgar Hoover deplored the rubber hose?

Perhaps, now we understand why that little minor break-in a month and a half after J. Edgar died came to be labeled by some as a Third Rate Burglary--one accomplished with rubber hose. That is, silk.


One Vote-Getter Of GOP Is Perfect Target For FR

The Republicans are in a sad quandary.

What they want most in 1940, of course, is a winning candidate. That means a candidate with great popular appeal, one who can be counted on to be a great vote-getter. And that is more and more true as the fact emerges that Franklin Roosevelt can have the Democratic nomination if he wants it, without a serious fight. And that he gives increasing signs of wanting it. Roosevelt plainly remains a vote-getter of the first order.

But the one Republican in sight who seems to have the gift of appealing to the popular imagination is Thomas Dewey. His sweeping victories over Vandenberg in Illinois, Nebraska, and Wisconsin have virtually eliminated the latter as a likely candidate for the lightning. And despite heavy spending, Mr. Taft remains unable to stir a ripple of popular applause. There are no other serious candidates.

But, wholly apart from the fact that Mr. Dewey is a highly unpalatable dose for many Republican leaders, he suffers from one appalling weakness. He is young and inexperienced. But if Roosevelt runs again, the chief campaign argument of the Democrats is certain to be that the only safe bet in times of great peril in the world is old and tested experience. Before that argument, Mr. Dewey would make a perfect target.

Third Degree*

J. Edgar Hoover Says Politics Is Responsible

Having cleared the FBI of recent charges that it had used third-degree methods, J. Edgar Hoover has taken advantage of the uproar to direct the nation's attention to the third-degree menace in general.

Writing in the current number of the American Magazine, he says:

"The FBI has records of charges of third-degree methods from practically every state. Many inefficient police officers throughout the country still rely upon the rubber hose to beat unreliable confessions out of their prisoners. My indignation against the third-degree arises from practical as well as humanitarian reasons. No matter how viciously they beat and abuse their suspects, the average third-degree officer manages to convict only about one out of every five prisoners whom he takes into court. That is a record of twenty per cent efficiency.

"An alert, well-trained and competent police force, on the other hand, generally has a conviction record of at least 50 per cent, and the FBI proves the value of brains over brawn beyond argument. Ninety-six per cent of the cases which its agents investigate result in convictions."

The remedy for the case, says Mr. Hoover, is for every taxpaying citizen to insist that the police department in his city be given a trained and able personnel, adequate equipment, and above all, freedom from political domination.

"In a single year fully 60 per cent of all the police chiefs in the nation lost their jobs, and few indeed of the remainder counted themselves as wholly safe from the inroads of pressure, politics, or reprisals. As long as merit and efficiency go unrewarded on police forces, you will continue to have third degree methods and inferior law enforcement."


In Which Everything Was Swift And Decisive

There was a battle in the Kattegat which was thoroughly decisive and satisfying. But it was a long time ago, say the eleventh century.

You may find it reported in Sir George Webbe Dasent's translation on the Njal Saga of Iceland, "The Story of Burnt Njal," under the title of "The Slaying of Atli, Arnvid's Son."

Hrut of Iceland was in pursuit of one Soti, who had grabbed his inheritance in Norway, sold it, and taken ship for distant parts. Hrut of Iceland, in four ships given him by Harold Gray-fell, king in Norway, and Harold's Queen, Gunnhilda, who was sweet on Hrut. Hrut, with Wolf the Unwashed, who, Queen Gunnhilda explained to Hrut, "is our overseer of guests."

Coasting along the Kattegat, they came into the Sound, the narrow neck of water which lies between Denmark and Sweden and connects the Kattegat proper with the Baltic. There they fell in with the ships of Atli, son of Arnvid, Earl of Gothland, an outlaw from both Denmark and Sweden.

They exchanged boasts as to what they were going to do to one another. Atli picked up a spear and hurled it, killed a man on Hrut's ship, the battle was on. Great slaughter made Wolf the Unwashed on the decks of Atli's ships and mighty was the sword play of Hrut upon whom Gunnhilda had placed a spell. Yet it began to look as though Atli might win as he boarded Hrut's ship. Straight at the Icelander he came, his axe splitting the shield of the latter from top to bottom. Then a rock struck Hrut and he went down. But the spell held. On his knees he struck out with his sword, cut off Atli's leg at the ankle, felled him, climbed to his feet and finished him off.

Then they took the best of the captured ships, filled them with the best goods, and turned back to Norway--and Queen Gunnhilda.


A New Word Is Invented In Honor Of A 40th Anniversary

The qualities, distinctive traits and peculiarities of an individual go to make up what we call his personality. When we say a man has personality, we mean he's an agreeable, magnetic sort of fellow.

The word-makers somehow have neglected to supply a companion word to personality to describe what, for want of this word, we shall have to call the personality of a corporation. Just as individuals, corporations have personality; make no mistake about that. They are agreeable and disagreeable; alert and sluggish; day-long honest or ranging from a little on the sharp side to known untrustworthiness.

The word our language lacks is something like corporationality: the character and characteristics of a business institution. It is a word that may be used in a highly complimentary sense about J. B. Ivey & Co., which is celebrating its 40th anniversary.

The Christian character of the founder and namesake of the store has always permeated its administration and determined its method of doing business. Mr. Ivey is a man who puts his religion into practice, no matter at what immediate disadvantage; and the world will always admire him who steadfastly is true to his convictions.

A good part of the character of J. B. Ivey & Co. stems directly from this elder citizen, and it is an everlasting credit to him. But Ivey's is more than a one-man institution. If it were not so, it would lack the versatility and the comprehensiveness which distinguish it.

The source of its indefatigable energy and initiative and originality is, of course, Dave Ovens. What Mr. Ivey had the perseverance to build, Mr. Ovens had the daring to enlarge continually. Not at all incompatible in outlook, they have been a remarkable team; and that their enterprise has flourished is a tribute both to their mutual understanding and respect.

From these two principally has derived the corporationality of this establishment, which fondly looks backward at 40 successful and stimulating years as a sort of perspective of the unlimited future. For the single greatest advantage of corporate over personal life is continuity of existence, and in the younger members of the firm, in George Ivey and Buice and their associates, seems to reside the stuff of which the character of the store has been composed.


Hanging Is The Legal And Just Penalty Here

The Nazi command has issued warning in Norway that all Norwegian civilians taken with arms in their possession will be shot.

There is nothing new in that, of course. It is a customary part of the Nazi terror. And in view of what has happened in Poland, it may confidently be expected that it will be carried out.

What is worth remembering about it, however, is that it is murder in the full sense of that word--murder under international law and under the internal code of all civilized nations.

Nazi Germany has not declared war upon Norway. She has simply invaded her without a shadow of excuse in any act of Norway. And she insists loudly that what she is doing is "protecting" the little country. The Norwegian civilians who use arms to protect their women and children against the Nazi soldiers are in exactly the same legal position as though they were using them against Norwegian bandits. And the Nazi soldiers who murder them occupy exactly the same legal position as with such bandits if they murdered them.

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