St. Louis Post-Dispatch from St. Louis, Missouri on November 15, 1948 · Page 18
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St. Louis Post-Dispatch from St. Louis, Missouri · Page 18

St. Louis, Missouri
Issue Date:
Monday, November 15, 1948
Page 18
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2B ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, MONDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 1948 ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH ';; Founded by JOSEPH PUUTZER Dtctmbtr 12. JJ74 ' .' - ' TMuci hy The Pulitzer Publishing Co. , . Tctepnanc Addreu MAm JIII 1111 Olive Sr. (I) THE POST DISPATCH PLATFORM I know that my retirement will 'make no difference in its cardinal " principles; that it will always fight far progress and reform, never tolerate injustice or corruption, always fight demagogues of all parties, never belong to any party, always oppose privileged classes and public plunderers, " never lack sympathy . with the poor, -always remain de voted to the public welfare; never be satisfied with merely printing news; always be drastically independent; never be afraid to attack wrong, whether by predatory plutocracy or predatory poverty. JOSEPH PULITZER. April 10, 1907 LETTERS FROM THE PEOPLE The name and complete Address of the author must accompany every con' tribution but on request will not be ".published. Letters not -exceeding 200 words will receive preference. Highways for the Future To th Editor of the Port-Dispatch: There is a constructive plan whereby an unbiased long-range highway program for Missouri may be officially pre-aented to the people. When Governor-elect Forrest Smith takes office, he can appoint a committee of 15 persons five from the State Senate, five from the House of Representa-tivea and five citizens at large. These members should serve without pay as a policy-making committee, to supervise the preparation of highway information through research, hearings in various parts of the state and studies. Their final report and recommendations for a long-range highway program should then be presented to the Governor, the State Legislature, and the people. There are now available state and federal funds on a matching 50-50 basis to pay for engineering and clerical personnel. Such a committee, or commission, should represent various phases of highway opinion, so that when their report to the Governor and the people is presented, it would be authoritative and acceptable to many divergent highway opinions in this state. Over 30 states in the United States are already working out such a long-range highway program with state and federal matched funds. Since Missouri is the. only state in the United States which has less than a three-cent state gasoline tax, it is readily apparent that we do need more highway funds for the future matching of federal aid funds. Let's stop talking about Missouri highways in terms of interregional, urban, federal aid, secondary and county highways. Such a committee would be thinking in terms of an integrated system of Missouri's highways, such as all previous highway commissions have worked for. The present Highway Commission has an excellent personnel and might easily do this job of long-range planning under its own supervision. Nevertheless, the idea of a cross section of highway opinion In this state, as- represented by 'the 15-man committee suggested, can do the job more efficiently than any other ibody, as proved by the fact that more rthan 30 other states are handling their ; long-range highway building plans in somewhat similar manner. . ROBERT B. BROOKS, e Consulting Engineer and former member of the Missouri State j Highway Commission. I. To Keep the Springs Beautiful ;To the Editor of th port-Dispatch: . i As one who desires to preserve the i beauty of the wonderful springs as well as the beautiful Current River, I wish to express my appreciation of your fine i editorial. i R T. FOARD. Superintendent of the Doniphan Public Schools for 32 years, now retired. Doniphan. I The Refined Republicans To th Editor of th Post-Dispatch: - For the first time in my life I voted 'the Republican ticket, and I am highly insulted at the common folks wanting the Post-Dispatch to eat crow. Half of the people voted other than Democratic there must be a reason. I'm not against unions. We definitely need them. But there is a limit to all 1 things, and you can't deny the fact that :at union meetings the poor uneducated I were told how to vote. A sad state of ' affairs. I don't think Truman will dare carry out all of his radical campaign promises. If he did, he would make a worse mess ;than he already has. . If the Republican people would bother i to bob up as the other side did, it would not have happened. But they are imore or less a refined class, too good ;for mud slinging, and God knows there .would have been plenty to throw. , HORSE SENSE. More Gifts from the Arabs 'To til Editor of th Post-Dispatch: 1 C. M. Goethe's letter concerning "Our Gifts From the Arabs" recalls to mem-Wy a statement I once heard from a Princeton professor that Webster's dic-tionary lists some 1000 Arabic words .which have achieved permanency. In the English language. Half these words are .scientific terms, the other 500 are of .common, daily usage. I C. M. Goethe's surname, incidentally, .reminds me that Goethe, the great Ger-'man philosopher, borrowed his philoso-. 'phy from the Arabs. My source? Henry Seidel Canby in "American Memoir." E. S. IC i : , V' No More Great Books? ;To the Editor of the post-Dispatch: , According to latest reports, all passengers on Public Service Co. vehicles will noon be compelled to listen to preselected FM programs, whether they wish to hear them or not. S Time was when the transit company encouraged Its patrons to read as they rode. Some riders have no doubt come to enjoy this experience. In fact, it is rumored that a few of them have even attempted to fathom the contents of (some of the Great Books while traveling to and from work.. Now, however, our transit company executives have in effect decreed that none save the iron-willed or the deaf Khali indulge in contemplative reading on a public conveyance. Henceforth, all Yassengers are to acquire & liberal education by the company-approved method listening; to radio commercials! i DONALD DATES. MVA to the Fore , "MVA is back on the map." That is Senator i Murray's battle-cry as Montana sends him back to the Senate for another six-year term. Murray's victory was entirely unexpected and thus fits into the sensational nation-wide pattern. Shortly before the election, a pro-Murray Montana editor offered to send the Post-Dispatch an article analyzing the reasons for his defeat, but the article will never be written. Over the past few years, Senator Murray's name has been synonymous with MVA and there seems little doubt that the elderly Montanan will devote his energies to the end that MVA will cap his career, just as TVA capped the career of the late Senator George W. Norris of Nebraska. Twice has Murray offered MVA bills and now he is preparing a third measure. Just as his second bill was an improvement over his first one, the third one is designed to improve on the second, meeting objections that were raised when Murray, at his own expense, held a series of hearings a year ago. In his renewed efforts Senator Murray will have at his right hand a new and powerful ally, Senator-elect Humphrey of Minnesota. This crusading progressive, who proved as Mayor of Minneapolis and in the last Democratic convention that he is an antagonist to be reckoned with, announces that he means to throw himself wholeheartedly into the battle for an MVA. We welcome him warmly. From Senator-elect Kefauver of Tennessee, also, Senator Murray will receive powerful new support. Kefauver not only is heart and soul with the fight he knows a great deal about it from his first-hand acquaintanceship with TVA and his constant work for that agency. In the new Congress, it is to be expected that Murray's new bill will not be sent to hostile committees. It is a black mark against President Truman, who has often given lip service to MVA", that he helped kill it as Vice President when he referred the legislation to a committee which was determined to kill it. It is to be expected, too, that MVA will be made the subject of fair and extensive hearings, a process it did not have in the last two Congresses. Members of the new Congress must be impressed with the urgency of the need for a valley authority as a conservation, irrigation and flood control agency. They must be told again and again how some of the most valuable natural resources of the United States are being squandered or washed into the sea. Such new books as "Our Plundered Planet" and "The Road to Survival" emphasize the critical need for saving the soil. Members of the new'Congress must be told, too, how the generation of electric power could transfc m the economic life of the Missouri valley. Its population is now declining, but the jobs which power can create could not only stop this trend, but reverse it. The Missouri valley can be made into one of the richest regions of the earth, instead of one which is slowly sliding into poverty. But it will be said that the Pick-Sloan plan is designed to do this very thing. The trouble with the Pick-Sloan plan is that it was hastily devised to forestall an MVA. 'It was a shotgun wedding of the Army Engineers and the Reclamation Bureau, who want to preserve a bureaucratic vested interest in the valley. They and other federal agencies can never accomplish what a unified MVA could do. Right now there are too many cooks stirring the broth. What is needed is one big plan for one big river. Gov. Dewey was never farther off base in the late campaign than when he labeled the valley authority idea as totalitarian. He could not have known the history of TVA when he made that remark. TVA, far from being totalitarian, could not work at all without the enthusiastic and vol untary co-operation of the people of the Ten-, nessee valley. It has had that co-operation in full measure. So would an MVA have the cooperation of the people of the Missouri valley. This newspaper, which has ardently campaigned for, MVA for nearly four years, will renew its efforts to bring about the passage of Senator Murray's bill. We salute the Senator on his reelection and urge him to proceed in the spirit of Adm. Farragut's famous line "Damn the, torpedoes, full speed ahpad!" e Palestine and the UN Too bad the United Nations continues to interfere in Palestine and too bad the United States and Britain are backing the plan to demilitarize the Negeb desert. This territory was awarded to Israel in the United Nations' parti-' tion plan, which the Israeli army, in its conquests, has respected. Only later did Count Bernadotte suggest that the Negeb be given to the Arabs. In a discussion of the waning prestige of the United Nations, George Fielding Eliot writes that "the Israelis say, with some justice, that they would have been able to settle the question of Palestine by force long ago, had they not been interfered with by two United Nations truces. The military facts bear out this contention." Our guess is that UN prestige will be further damaged if it adheres to the Negeb decision of its Security Council committee, because the Is-" raelis, now in possession of the Negeb, will no doubt stay there. The UN ought to consider Palestine a closed subject, and withdraw as gracefully as possible. Surely, it has enough to occupy itself with elsewhere. e Frankness on the Submarine Menace More and more the Navy has been calling attention to the problem it faces in overcoming the menace of the submarine. There have even been charges that the Navy simply seeks to conjure up a specter that will enable it to get larger appropriations from the next Congress. There is little evidence thus far to support these charges. Military men, scientists, magazines and newspapers have cited again and again the great improvements that have been made in submarines as a result of U-boats and blueprints found in Germany at the end of the war. Germany nearly won two wars with her U-boats. Russia has been concentrating on submarines since World War II ended. She has a large fleet of them. t Our Navy has started construction of a giant 65,000-ton aircraft carrier. Aircraft carriers have always been easy targets for submarines unless heavily protected by smaller craft especially equipped for detecting and sinking submarines. The target afforded by this new aircraft carrier would be the biggest and the most important one on the seven seas. Therefore it would seem that the Navy was simply being frank in having stressed the menace of the submarine for the past year or more. Only this week it announced development of a new detecting system that made it possible to locate the Type 21 schnorkel-equipped sub. Once a sub is pinpointed it usually is easy to destroy it It has not said that this new system would handle the Type 26 craft, which far outdoes the Type 21 as a menace. Thus it seems that the Type 26 remains a serious menace. The Navy should be commended for trying to awaken public lethargy to the need for being on guard in these perilous days instead of being criticized on what seem to be false grounds. Waste and Ruin of War Surplus The wrfr surplus scandal which George Weller reports from the Far East repeats the story of 30 years ago on a still larger scale. As after the First World War, special interests in the United States which are afraid of letting these goods compete with current manufactures have succeeded in forcing the Government into a policy of colossal waste. As planes by the hundreds were burned then, and automobiles by the thousands stood In the rain until they were ruined, so now because of the avarice of some manufacturers and some workers the United States is squandering in the Far East materials that are desperately needed here at home. In what Mr. Weller calls an "incredible' American embargo against Americans," the Government has barred thousands of tons of building materials while at home, Americans have gone homeless for lack of these same materials. It has done the same with jeeps, trucks, generators, refrigerators, pumps, presses, sawmills, tractors, gloves, pillowcases, X-ray machines, dental equipment, nails, paint and canned food. Nor does the train of evil consequences stop with the sheer waste. This mountain of materials has augmented the already rampant corruption in Chinese officialdom. Much of it has been sold back to Americans at 100 per cent profit. Some of it has fallen into the hands of the Chinese Communists and more of it seems altogether likely to do so. This material, like the scrap iron this country sold to Japan before the Second World War, may be shot back to kill Americans if war should again break out in the Pacific. What are the selfish groups responsible for this policy of waste and ruin, for this unconscionable denial to Americans of the goods which their money paid for and which they critically need? Congress should make a searching in-, vestigation into these scandalous facts, and expose those who are responsible. e e The Evatt-Lie Letter In quite extraordinary fashion, Herbert Evatt, president of the General Assembly of the United Nations, and Trygve Lie, secretary-general of the UN, have appealed to the chiefs of state of Russia, Qreat Britain, France and the United States to end the Berlin impasse. That crisis, according to the two UN leaders, has been a grievous threat to the peace of the world since last June. It is significant and realistic that this letter was not addressed to the big power delegations in Paris where the Berlin dispute is on the UN agenda,' but rather to the governments which they represent. To that extent, it is a confession that the arguments and counter-arguments in the Security Council are not getting anywhere. - Direct negotiations between the powers are suggested. And there is the further offer of mediatory services by, the president of the Security Council, Juan Bramyglia of the Argentine. It is certainly to be hoped that such negotiations will be undertaken. , fit v,; kSJ . A Middle Policy for China Nationalist China's imminent peril at the hands of the native Communist insurgents makes a program of strong aid to China attractive, emotionally at any rate. The Republicans were planning it if they came into power at Washington. President Truman is pondering something of the same. So there is a special and timely value in wise counsels like those the New York Herald Tribune makes in an editorial reprinted today under the cartoon. That newspaper points out the limits to what the United States could do in the present circumstances in China, and the gargantuan effort that would be required to gain even those limited ends. It points out that the future of western democracy is more closely bound - up with the fate of Western Europe, and that, moreover, there is a far brighter possibility of accomplishing something there. A. T. Steele, one of the ablest correspondents in China, wrote in the Post-Dispatch yesterday that American aid could not stem the Red tide now unless it were accompanied by something tantamount to American control of China's affairs and that this would antagonize many Chinese, perhaps spur Russia into increased support of the Chinese Communists, and "involve the United States in a mammoth and expensive gamble." ' ' Without minimizing the undesirableness of a Chinese Communis conquest, it ought to be possible for United States policy-makers to evolve a long-range and unveering China policy which will cease pouring billions down a rathole, as at present, and offer an eventual hope of popular government in China. e Threats of a Filibuster Southern Democratic Senators already threaten a filibuster when President Truman's civil rights program is brought up. Senator McClel-lan of Arkansas hints that the Southerners might compromise on federal anti-lynching and anti-poll tax statutes, but other Senators indicate that they will try to talk any and all parts of the program to death. President Truman risked his political neck to espouse civil rights. The Democratic party made a strong promise in its platform. The Republicans also made a promise. It should be possible, therefore, to stop a filibuster in its tracks. If the Republicans and Northern Democrats join forces, the rule on the limitation of debate oan be broadened to cover motions to consider legislation as well as discussion of the legislation itself. , Then the bills can be brought to a vote at the end of an ample discussion. It would be a mistake if the Administration leadership brought up the civil rights bills ahead of urgent matters like housing and inflation control. It would amount to a breach of faith, however, if the effort came too late and were too little. For, as Senator-elect Hubert Humphrey, the author of the Democratic civil rights plank, puts it, this effort, to give Negro citizens the fundamental rights guaranteed to all Americans by the Declaration of Independence is already 172 years late. "OH WAD SOME POWER THE GIFTIE GIE US ' If the Communists Take China The Mirror of Public Opinion Fearing this may be imminent, newspaper considers effects; thinks the Reds would find it hard to impose their total scheme on this tradition-ruled country; but they could give great aid and comfort to similar revolutions in lands where vital Western trade is at stake. From the New York Herald Tribune Mother and son are reported doing well at Buckingham Palace. No one seems to care about the condition of those who bore the brunt of the odeal, the newspaper and radio correspondents. Dispatches from China clearly indicate the existence of grave danger that the entire country will be lost to the Communists. It is not apparent at present how soon this might happen, if it does happen. The Nanking Government still possesses large armies, some of them well equipped by Chinese standards, and still controls at least two-thirds of all Chinese territory. How Well this territory can be defended is a matter of doubt. If morale is as low in South and West China as it seems to be In North China and the lower Yangtze Valley, the resistance of the Government might not last, long, regardless of its resources in soldiers and military supplies, and regardless of any help it receives from the United States. In this bleak situation, the implications of the possible loss of China to the Reds are highly important from ' the American point of view. Some of them are obvious. The most apparent of all is that China has approximately one-fifth of the world's manpower and that occasions might arise in which this manpower could be highly useful to Soviet Russia, Many People, Little Power Even in an era when one machine can do the work of a thousand men, no sensible American, no matter if he considered nothing except his own welfare, would like to see China made into a state subservient to Moscow. His only consolation, if that happened, would be that China although tremendous in population and area is poor and weak. Most of China is made up of tiny farms tilled by men and women who cannot even afford shoes. There is little commerce and less industry. There are a few industrial resources of potential importance, such as coal and water power, but these are undeveloped. Even if all the Chinese suddenly became enthusiastic allies of the Russians, which is inconceivable, the country would not be a direct threat to -Americans for years, perhaps generations to come. More serious than any direct threat to American security that would come from a Communist China is the prospect that such a China would strengthen Communist movements in Southeast Asia and India. Millions of Chinese live in countries to the.: south of China, and in one of them Malaya half the population is' Chinese. - It Is just as true today in Asia, as it has been for hundreds of years, that developments in China have an influence far beyond that country's borders. Corruption and Inefficiency as Usrfal While a victory for the Communists in China would give a psychological lift to Reds everywhere. Including Europe and South America, the effects would be strongest in the arc of countries that run from Indonesia on the east, to India on the west. In addition, the Chinese Reds unquestionably would provide material assistance, as soon as they became well established, to Communists In other Asiatic countries. This could be of serious consequence to the United States, as the welfare of America's friends in Europe depends in part on trade with India, Burma, Siam, Malaya, Indo-China and Indonesia. Still anoLher prospect that can be seen, in case of the loss of China to the Communists, is that Red leaders in China would inherit all the perplexing problems now faced by Nanking officials. Corruption and inefficiency would not end in China merely because the country was controlled by the Communists Instead of the Kuomintang. The Reds also would have to make at least temporary concessions to cultural patterns in Chinese society, such as the strong family system, the desire for land owner- ship that exists in the mind of every peasant, the persistence of provincial patriotism and, the tradition that favors compromise as a solution to all disputes. Harder Than Europeans to Handle' To some Americans these matters may seem of little importance. Students of China are convinced they would create serious trouble for the Chinese Reds, and even more trouble for any Russians who tried to make the Chinese, as a whole, behave precisely as Marshal Stalin desired. While the subject is one on which wide disagreement is possible, there is good cause for doubt that Moscow would find the hundreds of millions of Chinese as easy to handle as the less numerous Poles and Romanians. China, after all, has been governed more by tradition than by firm controls for many hundreds of years, and the most diligent and astute Communists would Iind this habit an obstacle to formation of a complete police state. Serious Loss in Cold War The net effect of this brief survey of major implications of the possible loss of China to the Communists is that the loss would be a serious defeat for Americans in . the conflict that now exists between the United States and the Soviet Union, and would create danger of further defeats, but would not be by any means as terrifying: - a blow as would be the loss of Western Europe's enormous industrial resources and , great potential military strength. Americans should keep in mind these fundamentals when they consider whether any hope remains of taking action that would save China, despite the difficulties involved, and when they try to look further into the future and consider what revisions of policy must be made if the Chinese Reds are victorious, and thus win domination of one of the largest countries of the world. Between Book Ends On the Face of the Cliff NORTH FACE, by Mry lUniult. (William Morrow A Co.. $3.00.) Neil Langton's arrival at Weir View, an antiquated seaside resort house in North Devon, caused much speculation among the wholly spinsterish holiday visitors. At first sight of him. tired and unkempt. Miss Searle, the schoolmistress, "felt the aura of male negativism like a cramp in the back of her neck." Miss Fisher, a ward nurse, wondered "what he was convalescing from." Provisionally, she decided he might have been a prisoner with the Japanese. "There was a certain look about the eyes; and beside . . . " But they were left to their speculations for Langton was anything but communicative. The only clue was a mountain climber's guide book which Nurse Fisher found. When Ellen Shorland, young, provocative and sad, arrived the next day, Nell's plana for solitary swims and climbs were ruined, because he found Ellen using what he thought was his secret beach. Although he managed to elude her there, before the day was over he came upon her in a dangerous position upon the cliff face. Being an expert climber he' was able to save her, but what he could not foresee was that he also saved himself. For in Ellen he discovered a sorrow and desolation and need that matched his own. And If at first Ellen offered as explanation the fact that her fiance had been killed in the war, later Neil's perceptive and growing love encouraged her to tell him the whole atory. And it is here that Mary Renault's artistic use of symbolism is notable. For these lovers find themselves caught, as it were, on the cliff face midway between the past and the future. Each painfully helps the other to gain a safe hold and at last they begin the ascent together. Mary Renault won the MGM Prise Novel Award for 1947 with her highly acclaimed "Return to Night" While "North Face" is not calculated movie material, it has a novel background ' and enough intensity of plot to make a first rate film. However, theater-goers would miss the nuances of Miss Renault's remarkable prose. HELEN CAIN. Ml Mary Renault INDIANA'S BONUS DILEMMA, rrora th Loulrvlll Times. As expected, the veterans' bonus proposal in Indiana won landslide approval in the recent election. The issue now goes to the Legislature. On the question of ways and means, it is to be hoped lawmakers will be guided by wiser counsel than was manifest In the one-sided campaign for popular support Since Indiana's Constitution forbids issuance of bonds, deferred payments seem necessary if Indiana is to avoid burdensome new taxes. And even with deferred payments, some new Jax source may be necessary if essential services of the state government are not to be impaired. We trust that bonus lobbyists will bear these things in mind In pressing for legislative action and unless the referendum may be fairly and honestly construed as a clear mandate for a sales tax, we particularly hope that the Legislature will avoid this easy (for lawmakers) solution, Journal of the Old West AT THE END OF THE SANTA FE UAIL. fc Sittor Undin Sgal. (Imc Publishing Co., Malwauk, Wis., nt Pet. $3.00.) When Sister Blandina, a Sister of Charity, was sent to the end of the Santa Fs Trail, at Trinidad, Colo., she began keeping a journal intended only for the eyes of her sister, also a religious of the same order, from whom she had parted, at Cincinnati. It covered her activities and ministrations on the southwestern frontier from 1872 to 1892. It was made public at the Instance of United States officials who learned of its existence because of its historic Interest and importance. Publication in book form grew out of the appearance of part of the journal in the Santa Maria Magazine. The charm and value of the book are found in the simplicity with which Sister Blandina set down at the time of their occurrence the events of her life, many of them related to Important public affairs. She died in 1941 at the age of 81. A Description of Brazil BRAZIL, by rtif Hardin. (Coward-McCann, Inc., 2IS fag. $J.S0.) The author has done a good job of compressing into one book all the Important features and Interesting data about Brazil, a country larger than the United States . and with a topography and climate considerably more cbmplex than ours. Her intimate knowledge and sympathetic under standing of the land and its people clearly result from her long residence in this biggest of all Latin American nations. However, it is to be regretted that the author stayed so close to th beaten path. I

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