OFFICIAL JOURNAL OB
tWB NATIONAL BROTHERHOOD OB OPKRATTVH rOTTRHS
RAST LIVERPOOL TRADES A LABOR COUNCIL
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fifth Vie* Proeident Arthur Devlin, 205 Ashmore Ave., Trenton. N. J.
Sixth Vice President—Frank Dales, 915 Alton St., East Liverpool, Ohio
Seventh Vice President——T. J. Desmond, 525 E. Lincoln Way, Minerva, Ohio
■gfatii Vice President ■, Joehua Chadwick, Grant Street, Newell, W. V*.
Secretary-Treasurer (Thao. F. Jordan, P. O. Box 752, East Liverpool, Ohio
GENERAL WARE STANDING COMMITTEE
Maaufaetaien M. J, LYNCH, W. A. BETZ, J. T. HALL
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---------_JAMES SLAVEN, OSCAR SWAN, BOSS BTBWART
Are You Going To Lose This Year
In Your State?
The election this year of a conscientious, fair minded
majority to Congress is going to come the hard way—Mf at
all. The Florida primary proved that last week, if nothing
else. Senator Pepper, one of the outstanding liberals in the
U. S. Senate, was defeated by Rep. George Smathers, a Taft
Hartley supporter whose double-talking campaign got plenty
of financial support from the Republican Party. Smathers
will be elected to the Senate as a Democrat. Once in Con
gress he is expected to vote with the Republicans against
labor and social welfare legislation.
There’s no sense trying to alibi or minimize the Florida
defeat. But, we can try to understand it.
The issue in the Florida election was not the Taft-Hart
ley Act or Social Security or the Fair Deal. The issue was
Communism. Smathers, with the united support of the slick
magazines, the daily newspapers and most radio commenta
tors, made the most out of Senator Pepper’s past friendship
for Henry Wallace, ex-Vice President of the United States.
By the time primary day arrived in Florida, many voters
were convinced that Claude Pepper was a dangerous dupe of
Soviet spies. The fact is that Senator Pepper has done more
than most men in the Senate to combat Communism by con
structive social legislation. But supporters of Senator Pep
per were not able to break through the united front of mag
azines, newspapers and radio to get the truth to enough
This type of dirty, Smathering campaign can be expect
ed in every state this year. Union leaders everywhere have
been alerted. In Florida, a number of union leaders worked
hard for Pepper. But, the Florida campaign proved that a
few union leaders can’t do the job alone. They need help, not
from a handful of volunteers, but from every thoughtful cit
izen who wants a majority in Congress dedicated to produc
ing the greatest good for the greatest number. That means
every single one of us.
If we want our country to continue strong and free and
prosperous we’ve got to get up off our apathy and get to
work. We’ve got to speak out, tell our friends and neighbors
the truth—that this Communist scare is an attempt by the
reactionaries and conservatives to cover up their record in
Congress where they are strangling every single piece of
constructive social legislation.
We can win this year’s election. But we can’t win it in
our rocking chairs. Let’s get to work—all of us.
100 Days Of Strife
To hail, as the CIO-UAW leadership did, the Chrysler
pact as a tremendous victory and the largest package ever
won in fourth-round wage negotiations with the automobile
industry is injudicious, to say the least. The 100-day con
flict is estimated to have cost about $1,300,000,000, a sum
not far behind that of the grandaddy of all, the 113-day
General Motors strike in 1946.
The gains were $100 a month pensions, a hospital-medi
cal program and other contract improvements, all of which,
according to Chrysler spokesmen, could have been had at the
conference table without loss of a single day’s pay.
Nevertheless, the union did carry some points, notably
on the question of setting up a pension plan which provides
for the funding of past and future service credits, and addi
tional company contributions to the cost
fits. These matters were undoubtedly important from the
financial and technical viewpoint, but hardly important
enough to justify a wage loss of more than $80,000,00(1 to
the 89,000 Chrysler workers and their families. To this
should In? added the losses suffered by workers in supply and
distributive firms, and the inconveniences imposed u|xn the
Compare the Chrysler conflict with its attendant bitter
ness to the resjxmsible attitude of the AFL unions in nego
tiating new agreements with substantial wage and social se
curity concessions on the employers’ part. These advances,
it is well to note, are made without fanfare and, what is more
significant, without costly strike action. B/ their under
standing of the complex issues at stake and their readiness
to meet management half-way on an intelligent give-and
take basis, the forces marching under the banners of the
AFL are again vindicating their leadership in the American
economic and labor scene..
Who's To Blame?
Fourteen of the 16 major steel companies in the United
States resulted from mergers of hundreds of smaller firms.
Not one of the 16 was financed in the way most com
petitive industries raise their capital—through the sale of
equity securities to the public.
Furthermore, according to Securities and Exchange
Commissioner Donald Cook, the 16 big steel concerns have
increased their capital by $1,235,000,000 in the last 16 years.
That’s an average of $77 million annually.
They did thi" by keeping their profits inside the cor|tor
ations. They didn’t distribute the profits to consumer^
through lower prices. Nor did they distribute the profits to
stockholders as dividends.
Yet the steel barons are the first to bellow that there
is no incentive for “venture capital.”
Is anyone more to blame than themselves if such a sit
Taft Battles His Own NLRB Plan
Every now and then you still hear someone say:
“You know, I don’t agree with Senator Taft’s conclus
ions, but that man’s got a head on his shoulders. He really
thinks things out.”
Let’s see how he “thinks things out.
Last June Robert Taft (R., Ohio) said on the Senate
floor, “I believe that the amendments we have‘suggested are
important. Perhaps the most important one is the elimina
tion of the independent General Counsel.”
That’s plain English. A year ago Taft wanted to abolish
the office of General Counsel which the Taft-Hartley act had
set up in the National Labor Relations Board.
Last March President Truman urged Congress to do ex
actly that—eliminate the job of General Counsel. Now if,
Taft is the type of person his publicity men make him out
to be, you would expect him to go along with the President.
But what is he doing this year? He’s fighting Truman’s
proposal to abolish the counsel’s post.
Why? Because Taft is just as much of a politician as,
say, Sen. Homer Capehart (R., Ind.) or Sen. Kenneth Wheery
Last year, Taft was trying to drum up support for his
fake amendments to T-H. So he decided to go along with the
proposal to abolish the office of General Counsel.
This year Taft is running for reelection. The principal
plank in his platform seems to read: If Truman’s for it,
I’m again’ it. 4
What was that someone was saying about Taft thinking
How much in the way of tax cuts and big profits does it
take to satisfy big business anyway
That is a question that a lot of people must be asking
this week in the wake of the disclosure that General Motors
officials cut themselves in for an $8,000,000 bonus.
Heading the list was Charles E. Wilson, General Motors
President, who received last year a total of $586,100 includ
ing $201,100 in salary and fees, a cash “bonus” of $308,021
lush salaries, for early this year the corporation reported a
Close behind Wilson were three General Motors execu
tive vice presidents who each got close to half a million dol
Of course, General Motors has the money to pay these
lush salaries, for early this year the corporation reported a
profit of $656,000,000, the largest ever made by a single
corporation in one year.
What bothers us is this: How can big business con
tinue to claim that the Fair Deal is “ruining the country?”
What are they kicking about?
One Of Many Cases
The Detroit Fiee Press recently featured on page 1 a»
story, complete With pictures, about one Harold Coppens.
Mr. Coppens, a school bus driver, was trying to hold:
down three jobs and was working 75 hours a week in order kb"ut
to pay $31 a day for a hospital incubator for his son
daughter, who were om peimatuiely.
At his regular job, his whole year S salary would not
keep the twins in the hospital for more than 80 days.
Yet The Detroit Free Press continues to fight national
health insurance whereby the many thousands of family
heads like Mr.jCoppensjwould be able to pay for emergencies^
through a fund to which they wpuld contribute.
The big reason the American people don’t have such
insurance is because the American Medical Association op
poses any insurance program, voluntary or otherwise, con
nected with health that it cannot control.
But what would the medical brass think if the National
Funeral Directors Association fought burial insurance for
the same reason
Senator A. Willis Robertson, the Virginia Dixiecrat, re
cently said that the social security program is part of “an at
tack on our system of free enterprise.”
Everybody knows that the social security program helps
people who have helped themselves through contributions to
a social security fund. So social security is no more of an at
tack on free enterprise than is any other insurance.
But what everybody doesn’t know is that Senator Rob-,
ertson—and all other Memlxirs of Congress-—can receive
lensions too. And in most cases, these Congressional pen
sions are far more than a workingman can get.
Thus when Senator Robertson is retired by the voters
in 1952, he will be eligible to receive an annual pension of
$5,375—or more than $10(1 a week.
Is that an attack on the free enterprise system too,
Bursting At The Seams
Did the New Deal hurt Big Business? Is the Fair Deal
wrecking profitable corporations?
Look at the following facts. They not only answer those
questions they also tell a story that should be very import
ant to every political candidate who tries to tell the voters
that the country is headed toward socialism. The facts, ac
cording to the Securities and Exchange Commission, are
The liquid wealth—that is, the cash and securities—of
American corporations at the end of 1949 was higher than
at any time since the early part of 1947. ’The working capi
tal amounted to $67.7 billion, or $2.9 billion above the total
Not had, is it, Mr. Gabrielsou?
In 1942, the capital total $36.3 billion. Thus it increased
$31.4 billion—or 87 per cent—in seven years.
Not bad, is it, Mr. Taft?
Corporations owed the Federal Government $1.9 billion
less in taxes at the end of last year than the year before.
Not bad, is it, Mr. Mi Hi kin?
Buck Denham Rides Again
.. some unions .. still insist that they are entitled to
anything they want to do that the regulating laws enacted
by the Congress must he subordinate to their union-made
laws, and that the public must continue to tolerate their
arrogant disregard of the public welfare.”
The man who said that the other day is not Robert Taft
or Fred Hartley.
He is Rolert Denham, general counsel of the National
Lalxir Relations Board. Denham’s glaring bias against trade
unions has putrefied the whole basis of labor-management
relations for the last three years. As the Board’s chief in
vestigator of complaints, made either by employer or em
ploye, he should be absolutely unbiased.
His remarks set forth above reflect accurately his out
look: “The unions be damned.”
Why didn’t Denham name the unions he supposedly had
in mind? You know the answer.
THE POTTERS HERALD, EAST LIVERPOOL, OHIO
i x-, u i_ i i a i constant expansion and improvements tne fact remains* accord*
n _i. ...i n „u ...x..., i cess profits to increase their productivity. The other naif, amounting
to some $2,600,000,000, is invested in government bonds or resting
serenely in corporation bank accounts. For the big outfits, the bonds
and the bank accounts are just so much stored up fat. A doctor would
tell a patient in the equivalent condition to diet and exercise to get
rid of the pork.
The Buz-ness At Hand
BEHIND THE HEADLINES—
Truman's Corporation Tax Would
Curb Unhealthy Trend
By ALVAINE HAMILTON and CUSHMAN REYNOLDS
For Labor Press Association
The “fat cats” are feeling good these days. They are well fed and
sleek. To hell with the future, we’re doing okay in the present which
Js all that matters to us.
Their complacency is sblidly founded, too, according to fat-cat
thinking. We’ve had a look at some of the figures. The statistics
i. show that the big lads really are taking on weight, but the fat that’s
be ing accumulatt*d isn’t doing anybody any good. Moreover, economic
fat, like human fat, is an invitation to trouble. Maybe the fat boys
don’t know it but they’re asking for a stroke if they don’t change their
diet' Trouble is that when the stroke comes the rest of us will do the
But let’s get down to cases. For the first three months of 1950,
(profits are way above last year’s. Business Week, an authoritative big
^business organ, commented recently: “A few months back, most of the
talk you heard was that 1950 would probably see a drop in corporate
^income. Even after most people were convinced that we weren’t going
to have that recession after all, they still thought in terms of lower
iprofits. ‘Profitless prosperity’ was the phrase they used. What actu
ally seems to be happening is exactly the reverse. Manufactures’ pro
fits are running ahead of a year ago—and at a lower level of business
Well, what’s wrong with profits, you ask. Isn’t that what people
(go into business for? Sure, people go into business to make profits.
2But the real answer to the question is that there’s something peculiar
these 1949-1950 profits. In addition, there’s something unhealthy
Here’s one joker. According to the Securities & Exchange Com-
^Mission, corporations aren’t using their profits, their excess funds'
-wfter paying taxes and dividends, to expand the nation’s economy.
‘^However loudly corporation officers talk about new frontiers in busi-
yng to the SEC, that in 1949, the corporations used only half their ex-
Actually, the corporations ought to be using the extra money to
devise ways to produce more goods at lower costs. Any developments
along that line would result in lower prices. In, turn, lower prices
would mean that wage earners could buy more goods and create a de
mand for greater national production. Inevitably, the result would be
a higher buying power for our wages and probably an actual increase
in dollar wages. In the process, profits would take care of themselves,
you could bet your last new high-purchase-power dollar.
Naturally, none of these things has happened. Prices have been
level a long time, and with the arrival of spring the cost of living rose
a little. It will go higher by the end of the summer. There hasn’t been
a wage boost on any sizeable scale for months, and none seems likely.
Meanwhile, corporation officers bank their money, beef about taxes
and blame the government for whatever is or isn’t happening.
While the corporations and their officers get fatter, ominous signs
of economic malnutrition are springing up across the nation. We mean
unemployment, the desperate kind of unemployment we knew 15 and
20 years ago that finally was licked by the expensive shock treatment
of a war economy. In many communities, men and women again search
hopelessly for work month after dreary month, and never find it. We
have heard some of them tell their stories when they visited Washing
ton under union auspices. AFL and CIO economists paint sad pictures
of the situation in many centers, including some of the nation’s largest
cities. Unemployment is frequently longest, they find, in those indus
tries such as textiles and tobacco which reflect directly the purchasing
power of the average family. To make matters worse, in June a bump
er crop of high school and college graduates will be hunting jobs. The
CIO and AFL will do what they can through local committees and find
a-job campaigns, but the real solution is economic expansion.
In the end you come to taxes. All the above underscores the need
for the kind of tax program President Truman has asked for and which
is bogged down in the House Ways & Means Committee. Perhaps you
should add to the tax program the President’s new small business pro
gram. In any event, the 25 members of the Ways & Means Committee
had better step on the gas or they will win for the 81st Congress undis
puted right to the title "Do-Httle Congress.” They have a chance to
halt the unhealthy practices of storing up fat in one place while mal
nutrition spreads in another.
The Truman proposals call for increases, mild increases to be sure,
in corporation taxes. But the increases may be big enough to induce
the big companies to reinvest some of the profits in improved produc
tivity instead of letting them lie inert. The proposals also call for
elimination of the loopholes through which the big oil companies, which
are becoming increasingly dominant in the affairs of the nation, escape
almost all income taxes. These proposals alone, if enacted, would boil
off some of the fat and other measures would follow. Ten years from
now, the American people would have cause to be grateful. They might
escape a real depression. But the Ways & Means Committee as this is
written has devoted its time to wild cuts in excise taxes instead of the
1 —In Farges, France, union railwaymen forced the railroad to re
paint six new Diesel engines. As infuriated bull near Farges saw one
of the bright red Diemels and charged it, derailing part of tne train and
injuring the engineer.
—In New York, for the first time in the city’s history the Public
Schools Athletic League will have no playoff for the basehall champ
ionship. High school coaches walked off the playing field three weeks
ago demanding extra pay for after-hours work.
—In East Pittsburgh, Pa., a union electrician’s “dream home” was
.» uoov *iv.ovuiBn, i a., uiuuii
years ago on a grassy knoll one-half -mile east of the entrance to the
Pennsylvania Turnpike. Now, however, the Turnpike is going to be
extended right across Ohio and eventually across the country. Hunt
woke up one morning to discover the new super-highway was schedul
ed to go right through the middle of his house. Giant bulldozers tore
S the surrounding ground and circled the house with walls of dirt.
is sewer system was uprooted but Hunt forced the construction firm
to replace it. May was scheduled to be the third anniversary of Hunt’s
new homo, and the electrician—determined not to move—said that
the highway might have to be tunnelled under his cellar.
■—In Washington, the GOP opened a “Republican School of Poli
tics” for precinct workers with courses on how to smile and how to
convince workers that the Republican Party is really the party of the
laboring man. In one class, John DaGrosa, chairman of the Philadel
phia GOP, instructed the students: “Learn how to shake hands. Whv,
the Republican Party has been in the dead fish business for years.
Learn to smile and be a good listener. If necessary just be a jackass
with big ears!”
in danger of being destroyed by the nation’s “dream highway.” Jabez office in Pennsylvania.
by uES FINNEGAN
[by BRADFORD V. CARTER
Hunt, Westinghouse worker, finished building his dream home two Unionism, a way, represents a challenge to the formerly absoW
lute authority of managers, Witte points out, so the antis cry out that
labor wants to usurp th? powers of management. Of course that’s not
true. What labor wants is a voice in determining conditions of em
ployment, and there is nothing revolutionary or “socialistic” about that.
Thursday, May 18, 1950
—Tn Washington, I). C., Naval publicity officers in the Pentagon
planned to frame a letter they received from a Wyoming housewife.
She wrote that she hail just read the Navy had developed a new mine
sweeper. “I would like,” she wrote, “to get one of these because the
mine my husband works in is very dirty.”
—In Pittsburgh, the Jones & Laughlin Co. barely averted ajstrike
of its private navy when it signed a contract with 250 maids and cooks
on its river boats.
—In Philadelphia, at the AFL Union Industries Show, the AFL
Glass Blowers, who have their industry 100% organized, gave away
a 1951 Kaiser car which is 100% made by the CIO.
—In Halifax, Nova Scotia, a young couple unable to get a baby
sitter called a cab, told the driver to watch the baby and let the taxi
meter run. Now half the cab drivers in Halifax are in the baby-sitting
business, taxi meters are humming merrily and, best of all, no tires
are being worn out.
—In Seattle, Dave Beck, 54-year-old AFL Teamster leader, be
came the new president of the University of Washington board of re
gentj, although he himself never went to college.
—In Washington, the Int’l Association of Machinists noted its
62nd anniversary and recalled that the IAM was founded when a group
of railroad machinists pushed a locomotive out of the way and held
their first meeting in the pit underneath. The locomotive, named
“Maude,” is now considered an “honorary union member.”
—In Aukland, New Zealand, all of organized labor as well as large
sections of the public rose up in righteous wrath when the Government
sentenced a mouse to death for arriving illegally aboard the liner
Rimutaka. The captain and crew didn’t know they had a mouse aboard
until they were told the ship was liable to a $1000 fine or six months
imprisonment. The mouse was unusual on several scores. He had a
name, Hubert he had a pink nose and with his owner, James Burnell,
he had travelled 25,000 miles, crossed the U. S. in a Pullman, and sur
vived a shipwreck. The health laws could not be changed, but an indi-/
gnant union crew was joined by an outraged New Zealand labor move
ment and at the last moment Hubert was reprieved. Only then was it
discovered that the ship’s officers had carried out the death sentence.
—In Baltimore, 600 AFL milk wagon drivers won a strike against
a large dairy company and obtained wage increases amounting to
$120,000 a year. Just to show that “unionizing means good business,”
the 600 drivers pledged themselves to find 16,000 more customers for
the firm. Two weeks after at a banquet in the Southern Hotel the driv
ers stepped up one by one and presented the employer with lists of the
first 11,000 new customers. The boss, James Ward Sr., wept openly as
he accepted the lists.
—In New York City, the labor movement was given a startlingly
new demonstration of Communist logic. Westinghouse Corp, terminat
ed its contract with the Red-dominated United Electrical Workers be
cause of a pending NLRB election between UE and the new CIO Elec
trical Workers Union. In the huge Pittsburgh Westinghouse plant the
CIO union polled more votes than UE, but the day after the election
the UE demanded that the company reinstate the old contract.
In Montreal and throughout Canada, the Canadian Broadcasting
Co. was faced with a strike because some unionists refused to work on
productions featuring the plays of non-union writers. The list of non
union writers included William Shakespeare.
The Bunk About
Big, Bad Unions
Washington (LPA)—The ariti-unTori barrage is so tremendous, so
constant that some union members—especially the younger ones—may
get to believe it. That’s the way the Nazis put their theories over—
they shouted so many lies, so loud, and so long, that finally people
began to believe them. a
Perhaps some younger union members, after reading and hearingHR
so much abaut the big, bad unions, may begin to think there’s some-^
thing to it.
Rest easy. It’s the bunk. And if you begin to worry about “slave
states”, and “handout state” and “gimme state”, and “loss of freedom
and our way of life”, etc., just remember this: The very first thing
that all dictators everywhere have done is to kill off the labor unions.
They did it in Russia, and Portugal, and Italy, and Spain and Germany
and South America. The free unions went, then other freedoms went,
and them you had the police state.
Here is the way it was put recently by Prof. Edwin E. Witte, head
of the economics department at Wisconsin University, in a lecture at
Wayne University, Detroit:
“Free trade unions can exist only where there is a democratic
government and, vice-versa, I believe the survival of democratic gov
ernment, under present day conditions, is dependent upon the contin
uance of a strong trade-union movement.”
Note that he says that only where there is a strong trade-union
movement can democratic government survive.
What do they say, these anti-union people
Well, they say unions are monopolies. They are so powerful that
they want to run the country, and they will ruin the country. Our work
ing force today numbers about 62,000,000. Total union membership is
15,000,000. So, there are three times as many non-union workers as
union members, What do they mean, monopoly
Then these very same people turn around and say that legislatures
and Congress should pay no attention to the unions because after all,
the unions are such a small minority of the total working force.
Then they say that unionism is “a foreign ideology”, and there
fore un-American. The fact is that there were American unions before
the year 1800. The first central labor bodies were formed in the next
25 years. A national federation of unions existed in the 1830’s. The
New York local of the International Typographical Union is 100 years
old. Some other unions are almost as old. The Knights of Labor flour
ished in the 1880’s. The American Federation of Labor soon took over.
But the unions, say the antis, have grown so rich and powerful
that they are a menace to the nation.
There are 50,000 unions in the country. There are 500,000 corpor
ations, 30 had assets of more than $1 billion each. And of these 30,
two each had assets that were greater than the combined wealth of all
the people in 38 of the 48 states. And these figures are for 1940. The
concentration has become much greater since. A.
And the “rich and powerful’’ unions? Prof. Witte, in his Detroit
speech, pointed out that a study of 50 unions with 12,000.000 members
snowed a total net worth of $339,000,000, Including their insurance
funds. Only the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen had assets of $50,
000,000, whereas 10 years ago 780 corporations had assets of $50,000,
000 each. Only 28 of the international unions had a net worth of as
much as $1,000,000. Witte quotes another recent study putting the
total assets of all unions at $3 to $4 billion. There are at least half
a dozen corporations who have that much each.
Witte points out that in nearly all states, production workers are
a minority of the total population, and organized workers are a min
ority of the production workers.
Although some heavy thinkers have come up with the conclusion
that ours is now a “laboristic” society, Witte says that what we have
is far more a “managerial” society since industry is our main source
of income, and it is the managers who run industry. It is the man
agers, he points out, who are the leaders in wir society. It is they
whose doings the papers chronicle, and it is their statements that the
newspapers print as gospel. They are the "best people”, and therefore
fittest to rule, as one Congressman frankly said in campaigning for
Here is the way Prof. Witte put it: “What labor insists upon is that
human beings are more than commodities, and that the welfare of the
workers should not be determined solely by market considerations. It
challenges absolutism on the part of management in dealing with the
workers, not free enterprise. Rather it is the strongest bulwark we
have against the replacement of free enterprise by some form of soc
ialism or communism.”
And finally, there is the argument that unions have boosted wage
scales so high that industry is facing ruin. That is, of course, that
corporation profits in the last decade have been fantastic. As the Fed
eral Trade Commission pointed out, total profits in 1948 were twice
the rate of 1940. The industrial giants set profits records in 1949 and
are still setting records. The very latest figures, for the first quarter
of 1950, show profits well above the first quarter of 1949.
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