The Charlotte News
Friday, April 25, 1941
Site Ed. Note: The other piece of the day, "Half Convoy", previously uploaded in 1998, is here.
John Metaxas, mentioned in "Odd Noise", having died in January of apparent natural causes at age 70, was the premier of Greece who had in 1936 dissolved parliament and set himself up as dictator with fascist leanings, albeit still very much opposed to Italy and Nazi Germany. He had deployed Greek troops into Albania to resist the Italian invasion of October 28. A career soldier, he was chief of staff of the Greek army in 1917 when, along with most of the other officials within the inner circle of King Constantine I, he was exiled for his supposed pro-German sentiments as Greece joined the allied cause. He returned after the war and continued in prominent roles in the military and politics before his rise to premier. Premier Korizis, who had just died of either suicide or murder, was his replacement.
The mention of the Hungarian premier's supposed suicide is that of Pal Teleky, as mentioned previously in the Dorothy Thompson piece of April 8. Teleky and Hungary had been the subject of a Cash piece on May 31, 1939. The piece below, however, offers the first mention of any suspicion of foul play in his death.
It is noteworthy that Cash held such suspicions and wrote about them just 67 days before his own death by supposed suicide under such a cloud of strange circumstances and absence of confirming evidence as to be unworthy of any credit beyond pure speculation. At least until the fact is proven substantially, and the evidence of murder substantially discounted after a fair sifting of the evidence, Cash deserves, especially vis à vis the genuine possibility of Nazis having murdered him, the presumption of innocence, something the official story has never provided him.
But, because of this very speculation he ventured with respect to Nazis committing murder and serving it up as suicide, one then might ask whether Cash's personal animus toward Nazis was so substantial that he might have deliberately created an ambiguous set of circumstances surrounding his death, fully cognizant of his prior writings, in the very hope that such ambiguities might stimulate connections between his own speculation in April on these matters and his death two months later, thus leaving a legacy to awaken more acutely the sensitivities of observers to the danger which the Nazi mentality posed to Americans--a self-sacrifice, as it were, on the pyre of history. We have long considered it ourselves as a possibility.
But at last, we have also consistently rejected it. For such a so-called altruistic suicide, under the typology used in the latter nineteenth century by sociologist Emile Durkheim anyway, is not only still without any hint of confirmation outside the manner of death by hanging, even that never confirmed as being necessarily suicide by the absence of appropriately documented post-mortem examination or report of physical evidence at the scene, no prop for the body for instance, but also a theory which does not stand up in the face of the recorded events surrounding the date of death: Did Cash, for instance, create the coincidence of the presence through at least mid-June of Nazi oil supplier and Abwehr agent, William Rhodes Davis in Mexico City, staying in the presidential suite at the Reforma Hotel, the same where Cash died on July 1? Did Cash create the coincidence of Josephus Daniels, just eleven days after the death of Cash and without anything otherwise occurring at the time to trigger it, seeking through Mexico's foreign minister the arrest of three named Nazi agents? Did Cash cause his wife Mary and Daniels to agree after his death to claim to Cash's parents, who wanted Cash's physical remains shipped back to North Carolina, that the cremation had already taken place when it hadn't? The circumstances thus divorced from his potential to affect them could go on this way.
The only primary circumstantial coincidence of timing of which he could have been aware suggesting murder as the cause of Cash's death, is the arrest of the 32 spies in and around New York City on the weekend of June 28-29, hitting the front pages of the papers for the first time on June 30. But even in relation to that circumstance, without actual contact in some manner with them, he could not have known that the spy ring in Mexico was becoming desperate in the hours immediately following the release of the story on the arrests, that they were trying frantically to close up shop and exit the country before they became the next arrested--as far as they knew, a likelihood, though in fact no such thing was in the works. So, such a scenario of leaving behind a deliberate trail of coincidental circumstances--along with one running parallel to it, that Cash's writing itself had proved his own spook in the end to his conscious mind, seeping perhaps from his own subconscious or vaguely conscious connections made from material on which he had written for the previous six and a half years regarding the Nazis, and daily for the 43 months prior to leaving the News at the end of May--simply does not, for the reasons stated, stand up to the test of logic and time sequence.
We ask again whether or not the premise he raised in "Odd Noise", much as with "A Murder" of April 17, about the anti-Fascist news-sheet editor gunned down in public presumably by operatives hired by the Italian embassy, occasions suspicion that this very raising of the possibility of a Nazi ignis fatuus, routine murder masked as either suicide or street crime, may have drawn tighter focus to Cash through a reticulation of loose eyes whose fatted job it was to bring to the attention of the Nazi Abwehr just such disturbing insight to their intrigues.
As to the letter to the editor providing yet further commentary on the salutary benefits of Blue Law Sundays, it was to the writer's disillusion and dismay that Dowd and Cash could not be as Edward G. Robinson in "Big Town". But, you see, Mrs. Mullins, the problem is that, being of such low and degenerate character as they were, they just couldn't help being the equivalent of the character portrayed instead by Ed in "Key Largo", with Cash packing the heat, playing the gunzel derivant for Dowd, the head of the outfit. It had to be that way. Besides, what's a dame like you doing in a place like this, and with two names? They say never trust a dame with two names. So which is it, sister, "Mary Talley" or "D.V."? Best confess now before it's too late and we have to send you up. Because, as you say, it is easy enough to find evidence of wickedness on the increase as a result of the open Sunday abandon of which you make mention, the so-called innocent shampooing of hair and laundering of lingerie on Sunday, a deceptively innocuous bit of vanity which nevertheless leads directly to the decadent licentiousness, precursor to insanity, of the type giving rise to the most vile of things. Videlicet.
Stop there and look out the window, Mrs. Mullins. You'll see. See the clean-haired dame in her freshly laundered lingerie, sweetly and smoothly sauntering along her way out on the boulevard on a warm spring Sunday afternoon, just as the purple lilacs are coming into full bloom and the nasturtiums peek from their cupped pods, in need of tanning sunshine to elicit their erupting splendor along the park's vine-entwined previously denuded winter trellises grown thick now with enveiling sinful fragrances and variegated arrays of temptatious visual pleasures in display, masking the while truculent danger lurking insouciantly in the shadows of strangers, that temptress prurient to allow her proclivities to run rapaciously rampant, even to the end of dancing the furiant, to have her clean hair mussed and her clean lingerie made...? Well, we must stop.
But you see her there, don't you, Mrs. Mullins, previously innocent, now thoroughly debauched in profligacy? And all because of open Sundays.
Sure, as you say, you can find plentiful evidence of that wickedness degenerating from the very fact of openness had on Sundays too gay. But why bother to offer the proof or the evidence? Why debase yourself to seek to educate the uneducable with facts, when you know they will simply ignore them anyway and go about their resistless march in packs to open Sunday brimstone hell? The proof of the rectitude of your thesis is so completely obvious to tell as to be unworthy of expression, and, besides, to lend it articulation only leads to providing immersion for the radiogenic to engage more dissolutely in their twisted and Flavio-Satanic Sunday perversions, more cleaning of hair and washing of lingerie, trips to the beach, "business encroachments in railway trains running", as you so aptly put it, and other such anti-Christian activity cunning which the purveyors of Satan's salacious Beelzebubbling bale will term "amusement", yet which to the eyes of you and us cannot fail but to mean one thing--proof by the elenctic linament of the whore and whoreson of boozement in Babylon imminent.
Why, just venture out on any Sunday and you shall see it all vividly, passionately, breathlessly, tormentingly and ravishingly displayed in ree, ravenous for yet another proselyte's soul to engulf right in the open, right there, should you dare care to set your clean tresses and freshly laundered lingerie, betoken, right off the beach or out of the encroaching screech of the business train running, running probably through dark tunnels of Hoboken, hot, hot with steam from coal fires punting, stoked by the stroke of Satan in the boiler of sin, whispered soft, soft as the velvet in the luxuriant dins stocked with seats pullulating now and then with the quivering cleanliness of your sweet-smelling tresses and clean lingerie, into your thusly tempted lobes, as you caress the visual images thus betraying your senses of sanctification with primped id robes, delitescent anguish merely awaiting the unremorseful trigger of Demiurgic organ bid notes, within the echoingly hollow crepe indraped boxes perched ever so delicately above the now quiescent, striated aisles of any open-Sunday movie house hant-howls into which by the files in queue you might indecorously chance to stray, beguiled not by the few but of the lancing fray.
It is torment. It is torment of the tortures to the soul reaped from unforgivable disestablishment on Sunday. And only evil may come of it.
In the end, we have only one further inquiry to make: why did they call them Blue Laws?
You will know--when, seeking your ticket, the man comes around.
Room To Cut*
Domestic Expenditures Should Be Carefully Scrutinized
The comparisons between English and United States income taxes, now being circulated by the Treasury in support of its new program, are of course inaccurate.
The English have no state (shire) income taxes. And the general and local tax structure was at the outbreak of the war sketchier than ours. At that time, it appears, the American was actually paying out a greater portion of his income in all taxes than the Englishman.
However, this is no protest against the Treasury program in general. Taxes are taxes, they must be enormously increased to take care of the national defense, and the sole thing to be taken into consideration is to lay them so as to cause the least economic dislocation and least personal hardship.
But one thing seems clear. In view of the national emergency the greatest possible economy in domestic affairs is necessary.
It does not seem likely that the farm benefit programs can be done away with entirely, since the war makes things worse, not better, for some farm products like cotton. But the prospect is for the movement of wheat and corn surpluses to England, and benefits ought to be cut down accordingly. In any case, there is no sense at all in propositions pending in Congress to make the farm appropriations this year the greatest in history.
Similarly with relief. It ought to be possible now to put all the employables back into private jobs. And many of the unemployables are people who were obviously supported by their families and got on relief because the Depression made that no longer possible. It ought to be possible to reverse that process now.
Nobody proposes that anybody shall be left to starve or that fairness as between groups of citizens should be abandoned. Nevertheless, there is manifestly a vast lot of room for rigorous cutting down. And we aren't getting it.
Some Light on Audience Of the Appeasers
In various colleges of the country Wednesday the American Youth Congress held what it called "anti-war strikes." These "strikes" were in reality devoted to vociferous demands that the Lend-Lease Bill and the Selective Service Act be repealed, and to appeals to young men to refuse to obey them if they were not repealed.
There is nothing surprising in this. It has been by now well established that the American Youth Congress is a Communist-dominated organization--so clearly that Mrs. Roosevelt has felt bound to repudiate it. Not all the members are consciously Communistic. But the people who pull its strings are. And, of course, it is the Communist Party line at present to aid the Nazi cause all-out and to do everything that can be done to cripple democracy's effort to prepare to meet the enemy.
In view of that, however, it is interesting to observe the names of two men who addressed the AYC in these "strikes" at Yale and Dartmouth. They were:
U. S. Senator Gerald P. Nye
U. S. Senator Charles W. Tobey.
Which Suggests Nazis Have Been Resorting To Murder
It is customary part of the Nazi psychological war to charge their opponents with what they are themselves guilty of or what they plan. Thus we see Nazi spokesmen unblushingly claiming that the murderous attacks on London are simply retaliation for the British attacks on Berlin!
In view of that it is very curious to find them charging the British with having murdered Premier Korizis of Greece. One purpose of that, of course, is to plant suspicion in Greece and bring about disunity among the Allies.
But it also gives rise to the suspicion that the Nazis themselves may be trying to cover up something. When Metaxas died, nobody assumed that it was from anything but natural causes. But when the Hungarian premier was found dead, the circumstances were more than suspicious. First Berlin tried to put out the story that he had died from a heart attack. But when the evidence got too strong for that to go down, it hastily revised the story to make it suicide.
But now we may ask if it was not murder. Three leaders in a row in three months looks like a pretty heavy toll for either natural death or suicide. And the murder of recalcitrant and powerful leaders of their opponents would be strictly in the Nazi vein.
Site Ed. Note: There is another edition of this day's page, presumably limited to local circulation, which contained an additional piece supplanting the latter two pieces above. Since this piece, titled "A List for Voters", containing the recommendations of The News for the City Council election, was unlikely by Cash, we won't reproduce it; but for completeness, it is here. It is the only time we have found any such varying edition of the editorial page content, but then we have only about thirty days of the original newsprint editions from Charlotte by which to make comparison to that which was committed to microfilm.
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