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With 8u4» Mandat UHln. THEODORE W. NOYES, Editor. WASHINGTON. D. C. THURSDAY.February 5,1M2 The Evening Star Newspaper Company. Main Office: 11th St. and Pennsylvania Ava. New York Office: 110 East 42nd St. Chicago Office: 435 North Michigan Ava. Delivered by Carrier—City and Suburban. Regular Edition. Evening and Sunday 75c Per mo. or 18e per week The Evening Star. 45c per mo. or 10c per weak Tht Sunday Star 10c per copy Night Final Edition. Night Pinal and 8unday Star __ 85c per month Night Final Star 60c per month Rural Tuba Delivery. The Evening end Sunday Star_85c per month The Evening Star-66c per month The Sunday Star ..._10c par copy Collections made at the end of each month or atch week. Orders may ba lent by mall or tele phone National 6000 Rate by Mail—Payable io Advance. Band Sunday_1 yr.. *12.00: 1 mo., *100 only-1 yr* $8.00; } mo.. 76o iy only-1 yr.. $5.00; I mo.. 60s Entered as second-clsss matter post office Washington. D. C. Member of the Associated Press. „ The Associated Press Is aielusively entitled to the use for republicatlon of all news dispatches credited to it or not otherwise credited In this paper and also the local news published herein. All rights of publication of special dispatches herein also are reserved. Energizing the 0. C. D. In announcing a partial reorgani sation of the Office of Civilian De fense, Executive Officer James M. Landis expressed justifiable concern over the apathetic attitude of numer ous communities toward the whole civilian defense program. Many cities and towns do not seem to have awakened to the importance of O. C. D. activities, he declared. Undoubtedly this is true, but the Chances are that the failure of most of these communities to take the ci vilian defense program seriously enough is not due to local shortsight edness but to shortcomings of the part-time national leadership to which local groups in the past have been forced to look for guidance. Washington and other cities have done surprisingly well, considering the confusion of effort which has prevailed higher up from the start. Part-time Director La Guardla has Indicated that he will resign soon to give full attention to his principal job as Mayor of New York City. However, Mrs. Roosevelt, who has been part-time assistant director, is to continue under the new setup as head and “energizer” of the Com munity and Volunteer Participation Division. How much of her busy day she will be able to devote to this work was not disclosed. She will have several well-paid assistants, in cluding one of her proteges who is a professional dancer. The latter will have charge of children’s activi ties. The bewilderment with which many persons have received an nouncement of certain phases of the civilian defense program is not lessened by Mr. Landis’ disclosure that his proposed reorganization calls for creation of still another emergency publicity outfit in Wash ington, with embellishments not to be found in any other similar bu reau. For example, the division will have an arts council, headed by Melvyn Douglas, Hollywood movie star. It was stated that Mr. Douglas will take over his post after he com pletes another motion picture and that he will be paid at the rate of $8,000 a year when on arts council duty—which will be only part of the time, due to pressure of other work. As director of the arts council, Mr. Douglas will supervise the output of writers, artists and theatrical people participating in the O. C. D. pro gram, it was explained. The In formation Division—head yet to be chosen—will have a speaker’s bureau and sections dealing with press, radio, movies and display publicity, Mr. Landis said. Heretofore publicity work of non-military defense agen cies has been handled by the press department of the Office of Emer gency Management. It may well be doubted that this elaborate expansion of publicity ac tivities is necessary to awaken lag ging communities to the gravity of the O. C. D. program. It is far more likely that they would be impressed by an O. C. D. reorganization which was devoid of frills and of part-time executives and which placed major emphasis on solution of such press ing problems as development of ef fective air-raid warning signals and expediting provision of gas masks for the civilian populace. It is in such directions that the O. C. D. could stand some ‘‘energizing.” 'Pawnee Bill' An era in American history has come to an end with the death of Major Gordon W. Lillie, better known as “Pawnee Bill.” He was the last of the classic frontiersmen, the final exponent of the legends of the old Wild West. The traditions he strove to preserve will pass with him, yet such brave folklore is apt to be re discovered and so colorful and genial a personality never can be altogether lost Born at Bloomington, Illinois, Feb ruary 14, I860, Major Lillie was a miller’s son who followed his parents - to Wellington, Kansas, in his boy hood. There he grew up with a rifle in his hand, as natural a product of the prairie as the buffalo he shot for Trapper Tom Evans. In 1882 he ( entered the employ of the Indian ' 8ervice and shortly thereafter was appointed interpreter at the agency at Pawnee. It was by reason of the accident of that designation that he received the sobriquet by which he later became universally famous. The Oklahoma “boomer” move ment enlisted Major Lillie’s enthusi asm about 1888 and he was engaged by the Wichita Chamber of Com merce to lead a campaign for the opening of the Indian Territory to white settlement. His part in the drama of the subsequent “rush” for *1 land Is obscure, but, however Im portant It may have been at the moment, it brought him no property of his own. The ranch upon which he spent his final years was pur chased from his earnings in the show business. He was at first a partner, later the successor of Colonel William Cody, called “Buffalo BUI” by mil lions of admirers. Washingtonians saw both characters as central fig ures In Wild West shows, a type of circus which was distinctively their own. They made real that portion of the country on the sun set side of the Mississippi. Dressed in fringed suits of white buck skin, wearing high-heeled boots and ten-gallon hats, riding, roping, trick-shooting, they Justified their picturesque celebrity to the full. The period to which they belonged may have been merely “the horse and buggy age” but Its survivors protest that It had values which unfortu nately have vanished from the tragic epoch now prevailing. Imperiled Java Steadily and relentlessly, the Jap anese are closing in on Java, the heart of the Netherlands Indies and the center of Dutch colonial empire. The destructive bombing by massed Japanese airplanes of Surabaya, the great Dutch naval and air base near the eastern end of Java, is matched by simultaneous bombings of stra tegic islands not far from Batavia, capital and metropolis of the Nether lands Indies, at Java’s western ex tremity. And these aerial attacks came after a series of preliminary thrusts at many points of the Dutch outer defense line, stretching from Sumatra, through Borneo, the Cele bes, and Amboina, to New Guinea. Already the Japanese have several important footholds on that outer line, and they are now fighting to consolidate their grip. Those stra tegic footholds converge on Java and facilitate future assaults from several quarters. The great Japanese fleet checked recently in the Macassar Strait between Borneo and Celebes is thought to have been aimed at Java. But Chinese watchers an nounce that another great armada, including many troop ships, has steamed south through the strait be tween China and Formosa. And, with Singapore blockaded and be sieged, it is more than likely that Java is again the goal for a large scale attempt at Invasion. Military and naval students are substantially agreed that a Japanese conquest of Java would give them effective command of the entire is land-studded area which lies between China and Australia. With so mo mentous an issue at stake, it is well to understand what Java is and what are its defense possibilities. Java is a long, mountainous island stretching more than 600 miles al most due east and west, with an average breadth of less than 100 miles. Beside its giant neighbors, Suma tra, Borneo, and New Guinea, Java does not bulk large, its area being slightly larger than New York State. Yet on this relatively moderate area there lives and thrives a population of some 45,000,000. This attests both the fertility of the soil and the ex cellence of Dutch colonial rule. Java produces in abundance all the staple tropical products, though most of them go to feed the dense popula tion. The exportable wealth of the Dutch Indies comes mainly from the other islands, which are less heavily peopled. However, trade and com merce are centered in Java, on which the economic life of the whole em pire is focused. Naturally, the Dutch have concen trated most of their army and fleet to protect this vital island. There are understood to be at least 100,000 well-equipped troops in Java, which can be concentrated easily to repel invasion landings, owing to a fine system of roads. The American Asiatic fleet under Admiral Hart is supposed to be based on Java, to gether with an increasing number of American aircraft, especially bombers. The Dutch authorities ex press their belief that Java can be held if adequate aid comes reason ably soon, and there are indications that such aid is on the way. But help must come quickly, for time presses and the loss of Java would be a major setback to the cause of the United Nations. Emergency Housing The House Public Buildings and Grounds Committee has acted with commendable speed in reporting favorably the bill to authorize ex penditure of up to $50,000,000 for emergency housing and public works In, Washington and Its environs. About $40,000,000 of this sum would be used to provide 10,000 housing units for war workers in the lower income brackets—a need that is particularly acute — and the re mainder would go for water supply, sewerage and other facilities required to take care of the city’s expanded population. Chairman Lanham properly made It plain that the District of Columbia should not and would not be ex pected to repay all of this money. He pointed out that a major portion of the allotment would be in the form of outright grants. This is but logical and fair, for the chaotic conditions which the bill is intended to relieve have no relation to Washington’s normal needs and are not the result of any local derelictions. The hous ing and public works shortages for which the money would be spent are the direct outgrowth of the increas ing concentration here of wartime and pre-wartime governmental activ ities. Hence, It is the overwhelming responsibility of the Federal Govern ment to see that these extraordinary needs of the overcrowded com munity are met fully and promptly. Until recently there had been a too prevalent disposition in admin istrative and legislative circles to neglect this responsibility, the gen eral feeling seeming to be that Wash ington should shift for Itself, emer gency or no emergency. Fortunately, there has been a marked change in attitude with the outbreak of war and the prospects now are that the Federal obligation in this local crisis will be recognized adequately. Con gress can do its part by expediting passage of the $50,000,000 housing bill. Planning Commission The plan for reorganization of the National Capital Park and Planning Commission as outlined by Alfred Bettman, chairman of the Cincinnati City Planning Commission, merits careful consideration, coming as it does from one who is familiar with the functioning of the local group through his frequent consultations here. A reorganization “to meet present changing conditions” was recommended some months ago by Chairman Frederic A. Delano, who, although desirous of retiring from the commission, fortunately was pre vailed upon to remain long enough to assist in the reorganization pro gram. Aside from the question of whether Mr. Bettman’s plan for a smaller commission, composed of a full-time salaried chairman and four part time salaried civilian members, la the best solution of the membership phase of the reorganization proposal, it is clear that Mr. Bettman, in urging that the commission be given a status more than advisory, has put his finger on one of the chief weak nesses of the present setup. With no authority to compel submission to it of public buildings and grounds plans, the commission has been seri ously handicapped in carrying out the task for which Congress created it—the development and protection of an orderly program for growth of the Nation’s Capital. Hasty by passing of the commission nearly led to erection of the new War De partment Building at the front gate of Arlington National Cemetery, a mistake which only presidential in tervention prevented. And failure of administrative officials to consult the commission caused serious complica tions in the emergency building pro ject at Suitland, Maryland, where inadequacy of utilities necessitated drastic curtailment of plans. Congress has given the Fine Arts Commission certain powers to con trol the type of development opposite public buildings. It would seem only reasonable that similar authority should be given the National Capital Park and Planning Commission with respect to Federal buildings and reservations. At the least, adminis trative officers should be required by law to obtain the advice of the com mission before proceeding with plans for new buildings or other public works, Certainly recent experience has shown the dangers of failing to consult established planning authori ties. Out With the Pins! Growing scarcities of metal and cardboard, together with some con sideration for maintaining morale among the civilian male population of the country, should bring an overdue reform in the matter of men’s shirts. New shirts, and sometimes stiff, laundered shirts, reach the long-suf fering male in a form designed to torture him mentally and physically. Such shirts are stuck full of pins and gadgets in the button-holes, distributed with a devilish shrewd ness throughout the garment in a manner that foils feverish efforts of the most painstaking searcher to find and to extract them. The usual result is that some Ingeniously con cealed pin leaves its ugly mark upon the helpless carcass of the wearer, sometimes catching him at the very moment that his dinner partner has asked him a question demanding great concentration, such as: Where should we strike next in the Far East? The fact that men have not re volted long since against this hide ous and wasteful practice by the shirt manufacturers and laundries is a tribute to their disciplined patience. But the war may make such revolt unnecessary. An incalculable amount of valuable metal and cardboard, both needed in the war effort, could be saved if the practice of pinning and stuffing shirts were dispensed with. Regard for mankind having failed to bring this sensible contribu tion to happiness, patriotism should force the manufacturers and laun dries to take the step now. Out with the pins! Out with the gadgets! Out with the cardboard! If per suasion fails, let Mr. Henderson in voke strict rationing and Immortalize his name in the masculine branch of every American household. There are all sorts of thermom eters—Fahrenheit, centigrade, clin ical and so on—not forgetting that special brand installed on the porch of any hostelry which never goes below fifty or above eighty-five degrees. According to rumors the Germans plan to shorten their eastern lines and to evacuate Norway, which is described as “of no use to the army.” Possibly not to theirs, but certainly a good stout British army could well utilize it, both now and later on. Virginio Gayda, Mussolini’s mouth piece, said that the greatest producer will win the war. Even the ablest prevaricators will slip occasionally and tell the truth. ; 1 Of Stars, Men And Atoms Notebook of Science Progress In Laboratory, Field And Study By Thomas R. Henry. Discovery of an hitherto unknown and tantalizing meat tenderizer has been announced by Department of Agriculture chemists. It long has been known that beef grows tender with age. This is due to the action of a naturally-occurring chemical known as an enzyme, which can be Isolated in small amounts from connective tissue. It works slowly. Some years ago It was found that similar enzymes could be extracted from the pineapple and from the papaya. They worked rapidly and now are widely used by restaurants. But none or these substances, the De partment of Agriculture chemists say, has been capable of making beef muscle tender. They worked only on connective tissue. It fact, they say, the enzymes obtained from plants only start their action at cooking temperatures. They have practically no effect even on beef stored at room temperatures and none at all on that kept in an Icebox. A few months ago they isolated another enzyme from beef muscle itself. Its apparent Job Is‘that of a muscle tender lser and If it could be put to work with stored meat the problem of truly tender steaks at all times might be solved. But, the chemists report, nature seems determined to baffle the bon vlvant. The new enzyme does not work under Icebox conditions and starts to work at room temperatures only after the meat starts liberating ammonia. Thlt is only in the last stages of decomposition when the beef no longer Is fit to eat. They are working on the problem, how ever, and are confident that in this di rection lie truly tender steaks. The essential hurdle is that of making meat more alkaline without letting It spoil. Prom papain, the meat-tenderizing stubstance obtained from the papaya, the chemists report they have Isolated still another new enzyme which may have considerable value In medicine. It has been named "chymopapain” and wbrks as a digestive substance. It is, however, only about half as active In this field as papain Itself. The chemists found, on the other hand, that it Is ex tremely resistant to acids and could be made to pass through the stomach with out being Injured. Thus, they beUeve, it can be used to help digest food in the upper small intestine after it has left the stomach undigested. Experiments with rats have shown that about 5 or 10 per cent of this enzyme given with the food actually reaches the intestine In an active state. But, they say, this should be enough to do more good than any other known protein-digesting enzyme. An hitherto unknown and perhaps es sential building stone of animal life has been isolated from wool, human hair, feathers and milk by Department of Agriculture chemists. It is an amino acid, one of the long list of nitrogen-containing substances Into which the body-building elements of food are transformed in the stomach by the digestive processes. They are the bricks of the body. One of the most essential of them is cystine. It is one of the chief carriers of sulfur and finds Its way largely Into the hair and fingernails. Deficiencies In it have been postulated as a major cause of cancer, although this never has been proved. The new acid, lanthionine, is quite sim ilar to cystine, but has one less sulfur atom In its molecule. The fact that, like cystine, it is found in human hair is strong evidence that it is necessary’, since the body tends to discard what it does not need. The material has a colorful history, dating back for about IS years. Closely allied to sulfur is the element selenium— the “moon metal”—whose peculiar re | action to light was the basis of all the early photo-electric cells, now an essential of American Industry. There were ex tensive areas Of selenium-containing soils through the Northern great plains. It was found that cattle and sheep which grazed on those areas developed a peculiar disease in which the hoofs grew into great, curved claws a foot or more long. The animals quickly succumbed. Obviously the sellum In the soil was forming some toxic compounds in the grass and there was some fear that human beings might suffer from eating flour milled from wheat originating in the same regions. Government chemists started an In tensive search to find out what happened to the selenium taken up by the vege tation. Last year they succeeded in isolating from a species of vetch which grows rankly on selenium-containing soils two new vegetable amino acids. Both were similar to cystine. One, how ever, contained selenium and was prob ably the poisonous substance sought. The other contained sulfur. Now comes the new amino acid from wool and hair—very similar to but not identical with the sulfur-containing sub stance found in the vetch which had fed on selenium. No subject In physiological chemistry has been more debated than that of the forms in which sulfur is taken up by the body. Without it animal life would be Impossible. Extensive animal feeding experiments now are in progress to determine the actual role of the new acid in nutrition. Even If it proves not to be necessary, the experiments are bound to throw light on the fundamentals of body building. . Replies to Crttfctaw Of dmmmit Clerks. Toths Miter of The Star: It Is with great concern that I read In The Star a front page story headed “10 PM. Curfew Urged for Girls In U. 8. Service.” I am a young woman with • years of stenographic and secretarial experience, both in and out of ttag Government serv ice. As my time after working hours is fully occupied with language and defense courses, overtime work at my office, caring for my own apartment, making my own clothes and occasionally going to the theater or dancing, contrary to Representative Hill’s apparent belief, I have never yet felt the necessity for ac cepting invitations from “some of these boys on Capitol Hill," aa ha so aptly puts It. Can it be that Congressmen believe the faults mentioned are peculiar only to women) V2SOXMU S. WALTHU. THIS AND THAT By Chtrlu M. TractwU. “EABT FALLA CHURCH, Ya. “Dear Sir: “With your knowledge of birds and outdoor or wild animals I should be glad If you will help me identify a small rodent which was discovered by my nearest neighbor when she entered her kitchen yesterday afternoon, when she asked me to help her catch it. “Very squirrel-like in appearance, about 7 or I Inches long, dark gray and mouse like in shape, but a broad, flat tall about one inch wide, and not bushy as the regular gray squirrel, although covered with the same flat fur of his round little body. “He was perched atop the water reser voir of the kitchen stove, in which the morning or breakfast fire had been out for several hours. By the time I went over to help her round him up, he had gone into the dining room, where our efforts to comer him sent him scurrying from one chair to another, where he seemed to fasten himself around the legs in rat-like fashion. "This game of hide-and-seek went on for several minutes, when he decided to get into a chair seat, and gave me an opportunity to pick him up and carry him to the recesses of the woods and far from the noaes of the two game-seeking dogs and the cat. “Do you think it could have been a flying squirrel? How many specimens are there hereabouts, besides the plain squirrel? "Sincerely yours, O. E. C.“ Silas A. Lottrldge, in the one-volume "Nature Encyclopedia.” gives the follow ing general description of the flying squirrel: "A small, soft-haired tree squirrel. Head blunt and rounded: ear* low and broad: hair on ears very short; body small; tail about as long as head and body, broad and flat; an extension of skin from the sides of the body reaching from wrist to angle forming, when the legs are spread, a flat plane; legs of moderate length; hair very soft and of moderate length; eyes large and soft; general color above grayish-brown, be low white; hairs on tail very soft, and while tall is broad it is not bushy. Noc turnal in habits. "Measurements — total length, 1310 inches; tail bone, 4 inches; hind foot, 1 and 22/100 inches.” * * * * Flying squirrels commonly get Into a house at night, and most often have a very hard time of it getting out. Householders who find these little ani mals racing around, frantically trying to find a means of escape, are even more frightened than the creature*. If cornered, they sometimes seek shelter under sofas and the like. The best thing to do is to open out side doors and take screens from win dows, and then leave the house for a time, so that the animal will feel aafe to leave. All squirrels, including our common gray squirrel, are very much put out when discovered in the house. They are not afraid to eono in. but Main to be terribly upset about the problem of leaving, especially if there are human beings around. It is the human, of eSurae, of which they are afraid, and a look at world-wide conditions will show that they are not far wrong in their general and by no means secret estimate of us, as a race. All the animals, with the exception of a very few, shy away from man. Can it be that they have been right, all these centuries? 0 * • * » Mr. Lot tridge has the following to say of the flying squirrel: "The flying squirrel is a very special ised animal and stands in a group well separated from the other North American squirrels. Its so-called flying membrane at once marks it out from the other squirrels, and in addition the texture of the fur is very much softer, the individual hairs being rather long, very lax, and exceeding soft to the touch. The membrane is supported mainly by the limbs, but in addition a spur, or slender rod, of cartilage runs backward for a short distance from the wrist and serves to stiffen the forward edge of this gilding plane. A number ot flying squirrels have been described, some 18 species and subspecies in all, and while the differences between many of these varieties appear slight, there are several well-marked groups best singled out on the basis of size difference." A * * * This writer regards the flying squirrel as one of the most beautiful and graceful, and by far the most gentle of our squir rels, "becoming very tame In a few days.” It avoid* the light, during the day, he says, its large eyes, like those of the owl, being better adapted to darkness, “and so one may get the idea that it is a dull and uninteresting pet, crawling into your sleeves or pocket and seeking any dark place of concealment.” The flying squirrel likes to Jump from one tree to another by sailing down at an angle, then suddenly by lowering 1U tall and elevating its head, causing itself to “soom” upright on the tree trunk. The angle of descent can be anything from 30 to 50 degrees, but at times it will be seen to make practically perpendicu lar drops. The way of progressing through the woods is peculiar to it. That is, it sails from the top of a tree trunk to the bottom of another tree trunk, then climbs up this tree in a flash, and repeats the performance. Thus, while doing a great deal of upward climbing, which gets It nowhere, as far as horizontal travel Is concerned, it does the whole so swiftly that it can make faster time through the trees than ordinary squirrels. Our advice to any one who lives In the suburbs and who discovert a strange animal in the house, is not to become panic stricken, but to ascertain whether it is not a flying squirrel, and then , to determine if It might not make an interesting pet, at least for a week or two. It is not nearly as likely to bite as the common gray squirrel. Letters to the Editor Arp« Inegaity »( Lav Penalising PvwBi MM Refer* INS. Ta tfc* MIMr 1 Th« Mar: There recently has been enacted an amendment of the Civil Service Retire ment Act prescribing a new formula for the minimum amount of annuity to be paid the retired official or employe. This formula for the first time in the civil service retirement system recognises the salary from which the employe was separated as a major factor in reckoning his annuity. Heretofore even the highest paid officials, irrespective of their length of service, have been reduced on retire ment to the status of messengers in their annuity pay. While the new law has come in for aome criticism in public print because of Its opening up the retirement system to the elected, as well as the appointed, officials of the Government, and because of giving to such officials and employes thus newly admitted to the retirement system the benefit of previous yean of service In determining the amount of annuity at the time of retirement, no voice of protest apparently has been raised In criticism of the discrimination against the former employes In the higher-salary brackets who are now on the retired list on the pittance allowed under the former law. That the new law recognizes the salary of the employe as one of the major factors In determining his annuity Is a tacit acknowledgment that the former law was unjust to the employes In the higher-salary brackets; for how, other wise, can the new law be justified? Since that injustice of the former law is not to be visited upon those retired in January, 1943, why should it not be lifted as to future annuities for those who, through no fault of theirs, were retired in De cember and previous months of 1941 and preceding years? The new law is the more discrimina tory against those of the higher-salary brackets who already are on the retired list because they, through long periods of years, have had deducted from their salaries retirement premiums dispropor tionately large for the annuities received, while the new law gives many officials and employes not heretofore under the retirement system the benefit of former years of service In which no retirement contributions were exacted of them, the number of years up to 35 being a second factor in computing the minimum amount of annuity to be paid. Where is the equity in this markedly different treatment of former Federal officials and employes—one of whom may havt been retired last month on 30 per cent of his former salary, the ether mayhap to morrow on SO per cent of his former salary? A VICTIM OF THE FORMER RETIRE MENT LAW. Pretests C. C. C. “Raiding" Of Farm Laborers. To th« Editor of Tbt Star: In spite of protests made by the farm organizations and individual farmers in this county against the raiding of farm labor by the Civilian Conservation Corps for its camps, the enlistment of farm laborers from this county continues, and without the approval of the local Welfare Board. rw.pMi.te made bp the farm stgaai Letters to the Editor must bear the name and address of the writer, although the use of a pseudonym for publication is permissible. The Star reserves the right to edit all letters with a view to condensation. zations about the enlistment of 19 colored boys in C. C. C. from this county late last year brought about an investigation which disclosed that S9 actually had been enrolled from this county in the Dis trict of Columbia without the knowledge of local welfare officials. This treatment of farmers who have pledged themselves to produce more foodstuff for defense purposes and already are very short of labor, is amazing. The failure of the C. C. C. to respect the efforts of Secretary Wickard to produce more food for the democratic armies and people shows a lack of co-ordination which will be disastrous if not checked. B. N. HENDERSON, Chairman Charles County Agricultural War Board. L. A. STARKWEATHER, Secretary Charles County Farm Bureau. Proposes Group Transportation To Speed Up Wartime Traffic. To the Editor of Th* Star. "Every pound of rubber is a sacred trust for use in winning the war" and yet every day in and around Washington and every other American city there is conspicuous and wholesale waste of the rubber in the tires of private automobiles. Stand at the end of the Memorial Bridge during rush hours and you will notice that 80 per cent of the cars have only one or two passengers, while buses are crammed to capacity. The people could be brought to work In less than half the number of cars now in use, streets and parking places could be relieved of congestion, the traffic of wartime Wash ington could be speeded up. What is required? Wartime relaxation of the laws and regulations which prohibit the carrying of passengers in private cars for money is all that is wanted. An example should be set by the Government departments and by employers in encouraging the filling up of private cars going to and from work. Employes living In particular neighborhoods and working In neighbor ing offices should bo encouraged end urged to ride together. CARLETON K. LEWIS. Comments ea "Parasites” as Applied Te Residents ef Capital. Ti th* Miter of TM Star: Every right-thinking jfcreon, must realise the gravity of the housing problem i» Washington and all equally must ap preciate the sincerity of the President, end others In their efforts to solve the problem. However, the term "parasite" is perhaps a trifle misleading and some what ambiguous. Our definition of "parasite” Is: "An animal or plant nour ished by another to which It attaches Itself.” Therefore, some might maintain that the "parasites” are those who come from the outside to attach themselves to those who already art here and who thus become "hosts” for the "parasites.” As Baby Snooks would say, "Could be.” W. X. B. s Haskin's Answers To Questions By Frederic J. Hatkin. A reader can get the answer to mg question of fact bp writing The Eve ning Star Information Bureau, Fred eric J. Haskin, director, Washington, D. C. Please inclose stamp for reply. Q. What are the longest sessions at Congress on record?—L. I. H. A. The last session of the Seventy-sixth Congress lasted SM days. The first ses sion of ths Seventy-seventh Congress lasted MB days. These are the two long est on record. Q. What was ths amount ef ths Fed eral tax collected on passenger ears laid year?—E. S. A. Federal excise tax an passing* ease and motorcycles amounted to tlOlAttr •03 in INI. q. What Is ths origin ef the asms “gecko" as applied to the lisard?— O. E. A. It takes its nsme from Ms cry “gek-ko." ths last syllable being given sharply. Map of Africa—Africa is one cf the major continents of ths world. It Is an active news center, with the warring nations trying to pro tect their interests or usurp the rights of others there. What do you know of this continent enough to understand the news dispatches from there? If not, order our MAP OF AFRICA in full color, 31 by 38 Inches in slse. Re verse side carries a vast amount of statistics of wide Interest. To se cure your copy inclose 10 cents In coin, wrapped in this clipping, and mall to The Star Information Bureau. Name Address Q By whom and when were the words, “They need Is greater than mine” used? —G. W. A. As Sir Philip Sidney was carried from the battlefield of Zutphen. severely wounded, he asked for water. Then, see ing a wounded soldier look longingly at It, Sir Philip ordered the water given to him with the words, "Thy need Is greater than mine.” Q. Wh'.t Is meant by an annular eclipse?—G. M. L. 'A. When the relative distances of the sun, moon and earth are such that the moon cannot completely hide the sun, a thin ring or annulus of light Is seen surrounding the moon at the middle ot the eclipse. Q. How many languages does Musso lini speak?—J. G. A. Mussolini speaks French, German, English and Italian. Q. Who are some of the famous men who were bom in February?—C. A. A. A. February Is noteworthy for the many famous men bom during Its period. They Include, Washington, Lincoln, David Porter, Mendelssohn, Horace Greeley, Sidney Lanier, Roger Williams, Dwight L. Moody, Enrico Caruso, Dick ens. Ruskin, Sherman, William Henry Harrison, Charles Lamb, Edison, Dar win, Galileo, Ellhu Root, Cardinal New man, Copernicus, Handel, Victor Hugo, Longfellow, William F. Cody (Buffalo BUD. Q How many new books were pub lished last year?—W. K. T. A. New books published during the year 1M1 numbered 9237. Of these 1299 were novels. Q. What is the plot of the play, "Death Takes a Holiday?”—I. C. D. , A. “Death Takes a Holiday” is a play by Alberto Cassella. It Is based on the poetic conception of Death's suspending j all activity tor three days, during which period he falls in love with a beautiful girl and through her realises why mortals fear him. -- Q. How long has Walter Damrosch conducted the "Music Appreciation Hour?”—A. E. E. A. Dr. Damrosch has led the "Muslo Appreciation Hour” since 1928. Q. Can you tell me the origin of ths word "shibboleth?”—J. L. A. It is a Hebrew word meaning "ear of com.” During one of the tribal wars it was used as a password b^ which the Gileadites distinguished the fleeing Ephralmites at the Jordan fords. The Emphraimites were unable to pronounce the “sh” and hence gave themselves away. Q Does the violet plant bear two kinds of blossoms?— F. McQ A. It does. The brilliantly colored flowers act as decoys to protect the seed —producing blossoms which are very small, green and inconspicuous. Q. Where in the United States ean guayule rubber best be cultivated?—H. O. A. To date the best location found in the United States for cultivating guayule is in the 8alinas Valley of California. In this valley winter rainfall is sufficient for the field plants without irrigation. The long, dry summers at Salinas are favorable for growth of the plant and essential for formation of rubber. Q. What are the measurements of the largest lobster ever caught?—R. R. 0. A. The largest lobster on record was an American lobster caught in 1897 at Atlantic Highlands, N. J. This lobster was 23>4 inches in length and weighed 14 pounds. February Storm It it not spring, but tMt <1 spring time wind. Warm and blustery / feel It pass' I hear tt singing as U seeoops eld leaves, Clearing the earth far ereeasae and grass. It is not spring, but this It spring time rain Wearing a rainbow halo round her head, r Dancing with silver slippers on the lawn, Her touch like orchard petals, softly shed. And thongs of prisoned buds are tom 'asunder By this sharp lightning thrust, this burst of thunderl ■ IUDI1 STUART HA0KR.