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Politics in Big Unions
Seen Behind Tieup of Nation's Steel Mills Murray-Reuther Battle For Power to Delay Truce Until Oct. 31 Election By David Lawrence Politics inside the big unions, aspirations to leadership over many millions of members, and a bitter struggle for individual pow er is behind the tie-up of the Na tion’s steel mills which Secretary of Commerce Sawyer says will mean 5,000,000 unemployed by December 1, attributable to the strike alone. Because Philip Murray, head of the CIO, fears the political strength of his rival, Walter Reuther, head of the United Auto mobile Workers, and because there can be no showdown between the two until the CIO convention is held on October 31, all hope for the ending of the steel strike be fore that day has been virtually abandoned here. Even if Mr. Murray wanted to make an agreement, he couldn’t without risking his future in the union movement. This, too, is recognized across the bargaining tables and means that everybody wants to wait now to see if Mr. Murray will be re-elected before urging him to make a settlement. Many Ways to End Strike. There are literally dozens of ways of ending the steel strike— all sorts of proposals and meth ods that would save face for every body concerned, with the excep tion, of course, of what could happen in union politics if Mr. Murray accepted any proposition that meant settlement outside of his own terms. It may come as a surprise to the Nation to discover that millions of workers are kept from their Jobs and factories are closed and the flow of materials to small businqgses is halted, all because a political situation exists that has to be respected—or at least that the administration here thinks is entitled to consideration. There is enough power in the existing Labor-Management Re lations Act to enjoin any con tinuance of the coal and steel strikes. The President could act If he so desired. The law doesn’t compel him to do so, but public opinion can. If, however, Mr. Truman pro ceeded against Mr. Lewis and the miners’ union, he would have to proceed against Mr. Murray and the steelworkers’ union. The ex cuse given for not acting is that 77 days were given over to fact finding and negotiation in the steel dispute without result and hence no good could be expected to come out of an injunction pro ceeding now. But the President Is presumably the representative of all the people and is expected to use whatever law is available. If this fails, he is expected to lay the facts before both houses of Congress and get more law. This collides, however, with party politics. For the President is reluctant to admit that he could have used the Taft-Hartley Act to stop the major strikes and re luctant also to take any step that would antagonize his own labor supporters. Mr. Truman is de pending on the CIO and the AFL to put up most of the money to Influence 'the outcome of the 1950 congressional elections. Power of One Big Union. What Is happening, of course. Is that big unionism is demon strating rather dramatically how it can tie up the Nation. In the old days, when trade unionism was striving for recognition of the collective bargaining process, little was heard about the possibility that economic power greater than that of all the employers in a given industry might be mobilized. Industry-wide bargaining has in some instances built up that power but, even where the employers do not bargain as a unit, they are compelled nevertheless to deal with one big union. Now when it is proposed that all tiie big unions act concertedly to force submission on the part of employers, it can no longer be said that the bargaining power or tiie economic strength of unions Is exceeded by that of the employer companies. Today big unionism is able to paralyze the economic system. The tie-up in coal became so dangerous two years ago that the Federal Government used the injunction to stop the strike. The public ap proved. Now it is being urged that Congress repeal the injunc tion provisions of the law. Mr. Truman favors such a repeal. The President is in a delicate position as long as he refuses to apptf the Taft-Hartley Act when it is the law of the land. He can be criticized far failing to discharge his duties in enforcing the law. His argument to date has been that no national crisis has occur red. The statement by Secretary of Commerce Sawyer portrays such a crisis as coming soon. It does look as if tiie way is being . paved for injunction proceedings if no settlement through media tion has been achieved by the time the <JIO convention has ad journed. nUproduetion Rlihti RewrTtd.) FURNITURE CLEANED IN YOUR HOME 2-Pc. Set *10 No fuss, no trou bls. Removes grime and dirt. Call us today. CO. 7300 or CO. 5116 Hoffmann UPHOLSTERERS 2447 18th St. 171114th St. This Changing World France Declared Rejuvenated Nation Due To ECA Aid and Two Good Crops By Constantine Brown PARIS (By Airmail)—The re covery of Prance is one of the most amazing developments in the his tory of postwar Europe. After the lib eration until the first half of 1947 France was a tired, un nerved country which gave one tne impression that it could no longer make a serious effort and had ceased to play an im portant eco nomic or politi cal role on the continent. Conotantlno Brown. This was obvious even to her own leaders. Because of her past glories France was considered a "power” by courtesy only. But there was so little resilience and so little apparent will to do anything that only a few optimists believed that France could ever stage a comeback. Rejuvenated Nation. Severe restrictions, rationing and other measures—imposed by governments which were half Socialist and half Communist— created a moral and material de crepitude which was difficult to overcome. But France in this fall of 1949 is completely rejuvenated. Statistics published by the gov ernment and the publicity organi zations of the Economic Co-oper ation Administration cannot tell the real story. It is necessary to see and hear in person how effec tively American billions have been used. A country which only 30 months ago was considered by her leaders to be so far gone that the Com munists could have taken her over by telephone is back on her feet. Everybody here, from top gov ernment official down to the com plaining taxi driver, admits freely that “les Americains” and "le plan Marshall” have done the trick. Complete elimination of the Communists from the government has helped considerably in the job of recovery. It was Maurice Thorez, vice premier for several years, and his fellow Communists in the cabinet who insisted that all kinds of rationing and other kinds of restrictions be imposed on these strongly individualistic people. Because of the poverty result ing from the war and because of the complete disorganization of transportation the French were short of food and other essentials of daily life. The black market was the only source of supply for those who had the money to pay for the every-day essentials. In order to obtain the means to live on the black market, dishon esty was rampant in all walks of government and business life. Many who had no chance to gain through dishonesty were forced to sell the few treasures they owned. The Marshall Plan laid the foundation for France’s recovery. Realistic men in the French gov ernment helped the best they could. As soon as it became fea sible rationing of food and other essentials was abolished. Agricul tural products found their own price levels in the markets by the operation of the immutable law of supply and demand. Wages were raised slowly—at heavy cost to the country’s budget, it is. true —to meet at least partially the increase in the cost of living. There was and still is a good deal of grumbling, but eventually, lacking the black market outlet, goods leveled off at reasonable prices. The French apparently pre ferred to pay a higher free mar ket price and get their meat, milk, eggs and butter than to stick to rationing and price ceilings and be forced into the black market which extorted terrific prices. Two Good Crops Helped. A full stomach Is not conducive to revolution. This is particularly true insofar as the French people are concerned. In a few weeks whipping cream was freed from ra tioning and the French celebrated the event as a national holiday. Two good crops and large sup plies of raw materials from the United States under ECA have made the French one of the hap piest peoples in Europe. , This should not be Interpreted to mean that the rank and file of French people now are easy in their minds and expect to live henceforth in comfort and se curity. Their newspapers and politicians place the political facts of life squarely before them. They unquestionably have a keener realization than the British that another calamity may be visiting them and the rest of the world, possibly in the not-distant future. But having tasted the miraculous fruits of recovery after reaching the depths of depression —the worst, it is said, in the coun try’s long history—they are in better shape today than most Europeans to face the future. Contrary to Communist propa ganda, America has provided even more than it promised. The Mar shall Plan jnay have disrupted some of Europe’s normal economic life, but that is not apparent to the man in the street. He knows that he eats better, gets clothes at more reasonable prices and has a greater feeling of security be cause of America’s help. On the Other Hand Certain ‘Blots on Record of 81st • Congress’ Will Be Hard to Erase By Lowell Mellett The President says the 81st Con gress In the first of its two sessions has made a pretty good record for itself. By contrasting the 81st with 80th, whose bad rec ord did so much toward electing Mr. Truman, the statement can be made to stand up. For this the Presi dent can give himself a large share of the credit. Stub bornly insisting on action in keeping with L*w,n ***n«t». the party’s campaign pledges, holding the nose of Congress to the grindstone through an un usually cruel summer and well into the fall, he does have some thing to show for his efforts. But there is another side of the picture, one that is not so pretty. The House, with more than nine months in which to do so, failed to act in the matter of desperately needed Federal aid to education. A bill so fair from every viewpoint that only a small vote could be mustered aglnst it in the Senate was put aside again by the House. Contending religious prejudices were responsible. Neither the Democrats nor the Republican leadership being willing or brave enough to disregard the bigots as the Senate had done, the House took a month’s vacation on the pretext of having nothing to do while waiting for the Senate to catch up with its work. No Action for Year, So at least another full school year must pass with littl4 done to check the steady degeneration of the Nation’s public school system. That probably can be considered its principal shame of the session, so far as the House is concerned. The 8enate has more for which to blush. First there was the in glorious surrender early in the session in the field of civil liber ties. Although there appeared to be votes sufficient to enact much of the program promised by both parties during the ’48 campaign, no part of it got by the Southern Democrats’ barricade. Not only that, but the Southern bloc emerged from the fray with the Senate’s rules so revised that it is now almost impossible for the majority to overrule a determined minority in any matter. The effort to eliminate the filibuster as a legislative obstruction resulted in fastening the filibuster on the Senate more firmly than ever. For this the Republican leadership, as represented by Senators Wher ry and Vandenberg, though not by Taft, can be thanked. Taking cover under a strained interpreta tion of the old rules, they were joined by a sufficient number of their party colleagues to provide this extraordinary result. The consequences of this strange coalition are certain to be felt for a long time. One has just been seen in the failure of the effort to liberalize the terms of the Dis placed Persons Act. The need to do so is accepted by more than « ma jority of the Senate, but when the issue was brought to the flora- last week after months of deliberate delay on the part of one commit tee chairman, the threat of a fili buster caused action to be put over until the next session. Shame 'Written In Oil.’ In the minds of many, however, the shame of the Senate in the session now ending has been writ ten in oil. The great oil and natural gas interests were permitted to tell the President, through the Sen ate, whom he should not appoint to the board created by Congress to regulate the natural gas and other power industries. This was accomplished not by demonstrat ing any lack of competence in the man selected. Leiand Olds’ ten years of outstanding service in that very job had made such a demonstration impossible. It was accomplished by a sneak attack on his personal reputation, the sure fire smear technique of labeling him a Communist or Communist sympathizer. And to do this it was necessdry to dig up stuff he had written back in the 'iO’a as a foe of the forces then plundering the American people. These are a few of the blots on the record of the 81st Congress. It will hardly be possible to erase them entirely in the session yet to come. LOUIE —By Harry Hanani If*** VUG «M • »c ^ e* "^Z7 MacArthur’s Destiny General Regards Japan and Contribution to Peace as Part of His Role in History By Doris Fleeson TOKYO (By Air Mail).—Short of a personal invitation amount ing to a command from the Presi dent, Gen. Douglas Mac Arthur will not, in the opinion of h(s associates, re turn to the United States. The implication they leave is that such invi tation has not been received. Gen. MacAr thur regards Japan as his destiny. With close friends he often talks about how re markable it is that in the after noon of his life he has been privileged to make his present contribution to peace and de mocracy. His leadership has been so vigorous probably few people realize he was chief of staff for two Presidents when boys he led into battle in World War II were very little children. Chief of staff is ordinarily the crown of a sol dier’s career, but in Gen. MacAr thur’s it now seems a mere cur tain raiser. Like Franklin Roosevelt, the general has a strong sense of his tory and is greatly concerned with his place in it. He works hard at the job of keeping the record straight, and in his pub lic pronouncements, he talks for the history books. Rarely Goes Anywhere. His public position'is unique— a grant of power and a kind of l privacy that Americans do not ordinarily permit anybody, includ ing their President. President Truman has to struggle with a Congress, most of whose members think they are as smart as he is. or smarter, with a searching press corps and a free press sub stantially sympathetic to the op position party, and with a di vided and individualistic Demo cratic Party. Gen. Mac Arthur acts^in obedi ence to sweeping policy directives which give him great operating powers. He virtually controls ac cess to his presence. The foreign correspondents here must com pete for space with other world and domestic news and pay high cable tolls, so they necessarily stick to major policy. Gen. MacArthur not only doesn’t go home—he has not been in America for 14 years—he rarely goes anywhere. Since he came here Immediately after V-J day, he has left Tokyo three times— going to Korea and to the Philip pines for brief ceremonial visits and once to Yokohama, 14 miles away. Unvarying Routine. His daily routine never varies. He arrives in the late morning at his office in the Dal Ichl building, near the Imperial Hotel and across from the great park sur rounding the emperor’s palace. He goes home to the American Embassy for lunch, usually a late lunch. The Stars and Stripes staff boasts that he won’t return to the office until he has read their first edition about 3 pm. Anyway, he returns to the Dal Ichl about that time. He may work very late; he may go home to dinner fairly early, and then return to work some more. The MacArthurs may dine out • Quick Drying • Dirt-resisting Surface • Soft Satiny Finish • 9 Pastel Shades • One Coat Covers • Washes Like a Tile Wall • Anyone Can Apply It, Do Sev eral Rooms in an Evening • No Irush Marks NOT $4*49 GAL NU-ENAMEL'S ,utN0T 54 49 6AU MULTIPLE WASHING ONLY FLAT WALL PAINT MAHONEY WALL PAPER CO., INC. 324 Pennsylvania Ave. S.E. LI. 7-2325 with friends, but the general never goes to a Japanese house nor dines with Japanese. This he may change since he has issued pro-fraternization orders. Mrs. MacArthur shops for her salt-and-pepper-shaker collection in the imperial and at the post ex change. If she forgets her p-x card, she goes home for it rather than urge upon the guards her identity. Most of the troops do not know her by sight. She has said that “we three are one” and the MacArthur family life is close. Arthur, now 11, has his Chinese amah who still sleeps in the same room with him and an English governess for all his lessons. The general so far has been cool to suggestions that it is time for the boy to go home to school. (Released by The Bell Syndicate. Inc.) McLemore— Aik Tangled Up In His Accents By Henry McLemore LONDON.—There was, and still is for all I know, a casting director in New York to whom all theater goers owe a tremendous debt. His name is / Chamber lain Brown, and it was he who spiked, once and for all, my ambitions to be an actor. That was back in 1928 when with boll weevils clinging to my coat, and my straw suitcase straining at the twine which held it together, Henr* McL*mor« 1 walked into his office and asked for a job. Mr. Brown patiently listened to me talk for a while and then urged me to seek another career —any other career. Corn Fritter Accent. “Young man,” he said, “you’ve heard of the play ‘Coquette.’ ’’ I allowed as how I had, it being about the Deep South from which I had just hitch-hiked. “Well,” Mr. Brown said, “having heard you talk I am positive that there will not be enough plays like ‘Coquette,’ or revivals of ‘Co quette,’ in which colored retainers will be needed, to give you steady employment.” Wonder what Mr. Brown would say if he could hear me talk right now, here in London. That fried chicken and com fritter accent of 1928 is about gone, but in its place is one that defies descrip tion. It frightens even me. After months of mingling with Portu guese, Spaniards, South Africans, Belgian and French Congoans (there’s a home-made word if ever I saw one), Italians, French men, and Englishmen, I sound like the parrot representative to the United Nations Assembly. It has gotten so that even I can’t understand what I’m saying. I was ordering lunch yesterday and the waiter, who couldn’t un-| derstand me, asked me to repeat what I said and I didn’t know. I asked Jean what I had ordered and she said, “after all, I’m only your wife—not the school of lan guages.” So I turned to the chap who was lunching with us, a charming fellow who acts as interpreter at Wormwood scrubs, and he didn’t know either, so the upshot was I didn’t get anything to eat. Phony as $11 BUI. A few more days in England, however, and I will settle into what I always acquire in England —an English accent as phony as an $11 bill. And with it I will acquire half a hundred words and expressions as un-American as punting on the Thames or going to a pub for the purpose of throw ing darts. I don’t mean to do this, but I can’t help-it. I have the unhappy gift of imitating people without being able to imitate them, if you get what P mean. When I get home I’ll use lift for elevators, vests for undershirts, the top of the street for the end of the street, flickers and cinema for the movies, braces for suspend ers, nannies for nurses, prams for baby carriages, and King George for President Truman. It’ll Anally come to an end when Jean will ask me what I would like to have for dessert and I will answer, “What about a nice flan”? “A nice what”? she’ll ask, doubling up her fists. “A nice flan,” I’ll answer. “You know, an open sweet.” "Country boy,” she’ll say, “you’re home now. Be yourself.” (Distributed by McNaught Syndicate, luc.) FREE PARKING Next door while (hopping vi'tkOv'ttW 922 New York Ave. Open Dally, 7 A.M. to 5:30 P.M. There’s a parking lot next door—drive in from New York Ave. exit via the alley. No trouble—no hunting around —just drive in, PARK FREE while you select quality paints and accessories at Winslow’s, 922 N. Y. Ave. Telephone NAtional 8610. Save by Mail Your savings—$5 to $10,000 —are welcome. 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