ALLAN SHIVERS sst MRS. MYRTLE HANCE 40401,11 T`TriPrompeeresprotorl The one great rule of composition is to speak the truth. Thoreau Creedmore Fath 3-55 524 Littlefield Bldg, Austin, Texas Oixas Ottarrurr An Independent Liberal Weekly Newspaper We will serve no group or party but will hew hard to the truth as we find it and the right as we see it. VOL. 46 JANUARY 17, 1955 AUSTIN, TEXAS NO. 40 3 MORE RESIGN Vets’ Land Inquiry Goes Into Secrecy Solons Mist Decide On Sales Taxes Plan AUSTIN, Jan. 17A Legislature torn betwixt and between settles down to four months of spending and taxing this week. And if the snappishness of the first week is any indication, the fighting will be harsh and pungent. The legislators have before them the plan Governor Shivers outlined last week at a joint session for a number of state welfare programs and increased sales taxes on cigarettes and gasoline. AUSTIN, Jan. 17Senator Dorsey B. Hardeman’s Senate Investigating Committee is going into secret meetings at an undisclosed place and time to hear more testimony on the veterans’ land scandal. Hardeman declined to give any details of the meetings on grounds that it might “scare off witnesses” if reporters showed up outside of the meeting place. Un-named witnesses were kept off the Senate committee stand last week to avoid “jeopardizing criminal cases.” Requests for such action went to the committee from legal officials in Travis, Kerr, and DeWitt counties. Meanwhile: Two officials and an appraiser of the Land Board resigned in the “best interests” of the program, following the lead of their former boss, Land Commissioner Bascom Giles. Testimony from State Auditor C. H. Cavness stated a Brady land promoter, L. V. Ruffin of Brady, made $310,694 on four deals involving 90 veterans in less than a year’s time under the veterans’ land program. Ruffin said in Brady he’d “never seen that kind of money.” The Harris County Young Democrats joined the Dallas Young Democrats in charging that members of the Veterans’ Land Board “have been guilty of apparent gross negligence and scandalous malfeasance in office.” OThe feeling grew in Capitol cor ridors that Hardeman, a very conservative man, would not “cover up” for anybody and also realizes the political potential in the investigations. The Committee has promised a report by early February. The appraiser who resigned, H. Lee Richey of Austin, was the appraiser in each of the four deals on which Ruffin was alleged to have made the $310,694 total profit. Richey’s high appraisals are also involved in a great many of the block deals under investigation. Also resigning were the Board’s executive director and his assistant, Lawrence Jackson and U. S. McCutcheon, respectively. The newly appointed Land Commissioner, Earl Rudder of Brady, said: “These resignations have been accepted with the approval of the other two members of the Board, for what we consider the best interests of the veterans’ land program.” The other two members are Governor Allan Shivers and Attorney General John Ben Shepperd. Dennis Wallace, 20 year employee of the State Land Office, was named acting executive secretary for the program. Shivers. at a meeting of the Land Board, said that all future applications should be accompanied by complete appraisals. “If the appraisers can’t get information, we can get new appraisers,” he said. Jackson had testified earlier this year that he did not pay any attention to how much profit promoters made, and that while written appraisals were required for land being sold the Board by individual veterans had to be written out in full, block deals sometimes involving hundreds of thousands of dollars were allowed to be closed with only “verbal” appraisers’ reports. Cavness said that Ruffin, the Brady promoter, had paid $277,500 for land he sold the State for $588,194 as appraised by Richey. In some cases, Ruffin did not get the deed to the land from the original owners until after the State had advanced him the money to buy it. N. K. Dixon of the Department of Young Dems, GOP Argue Public. Power in Houston Special to The Texas Observer HOUSTON, Jan. 17Young Democrats and Young Republicans of Houston will debate the Administration’s public power policy here Jan. 27. Dean Johnston, president of the Young Democrats Clubs of Texas and Otis Walters of the speech department of the University of Houston will speak for the Young Democrats, and Jack Sheppard, formerly a candidate for the Texas Legislature, and Duke Hobbs, an insurance man, will represent the Young Republicans. Port Arthur Issue Tossed To Capitol By JACK MORGAN Port Arthur Correspondent The Texas Observer PORT ARTHUR, Jan. 17 For all practical purposes, finis has been written to the Port Arthur StoryChapter One. What follows in the coming weeks and months, with respect to this story will be authored at Austin by the Texas Legislature. CIO strikers last week stopped their picketing at six othe establiiiii,ents that had been embroiled in a labor dis pute for almost 15 months. The six are cafes and drive-in restaurants. The settlement between CIO Sabine Area Local Industrial Union 1814 and the eating places followed on the heels of an announcement that damage suits brought by eleven of twelve struck retailtrades firms in Port Arthur had been withdrawn by the plaintiffs. Picketing of eight other retail business houses, including five over which the National Labor Relations Board had accepted jurisdiction, ceased on Dec. 31. Today, only four firms the Home Laundry, with its scattered substations; Fred Miller Hardware Stores, and Sabine and Goodhue Hotelshave yet to come to some agreement with LIU 1814. Originally, 22 places were struck by their union employees. One came to terms with the union some Rush on Hopper Starts in Austin AUSTIN, Jan. 17A rush of proposed legislation ranging from a tax on telephone poles to reforms in insurance and veterans’ land laws begins pouring into the Capitol hopper this week. Comic book regulation and abolition of the poll tax were among proposals late last week in bills filed for introduction in the House of Representatives. Rep. Joe Pool of Dallas introduced a bill imposing a fine up to $1,000 and one ear in jail on anyone drawing, publishing, distribut Shivers figured that a two-centper gallon gasoline raise, one cent more on each pack of cigarettes, and a $50 college tuition rate, plus some juggling of school funds, would meet the $61 million deficit that had been predicted as a result of the normal operation of State Government during this biennium. However, he has told the Legislature that they will have to raise $135 million to continue present services for an expanding population and provide essential new services. And before the week was out, a breakdown of the Governor’s budget showed that the deficit for the next biennium actually will be $65,500,000. Shivers had omitted $2 million for expenses of the session and $2,500,000 for employees’ retirement from his $61 million figure. Shivers called for a reexamination of “the entire field of taxation, to determine who pays state taxes and who doesn’twho pays too much, and whc’ pay:, tc,o Reaction to his sales tax proposals was generally cool, although a few legislators went along. He is on record against a general sales tax. Speaking confidently and rapidly to a session which interrupted him for applause only twice, Shivers interpolated into his prepared address: “There is no escaping that responsible government costs money.” Shivers also renewed his attack on the Port Arthur strike, saying Texas law should “forbid the economic paralysis of local retail business such as has continued for more than a year at Port Arthur, through picket lines originally set up by a Communist-dominated union that in fact did not represent a majority Of the employees of the new business establishments they sought To strangle.” He received one of his two in terruptions for applause on this S. A. Woman Would Stamp Library Books in Rt-1 By RONNIE DUGGER Editor, The Texas Observer Myrtle Hance is a dedicated woman. She is active in that militant minority in .American politics which reveres McCarthy, MacArthur, and Westbrook Pegler and which prefers to call the United States a republic instead of a democracy. She used to be a Minute Woman, but she gave it up when her own homebased activities started tak -ing up all her time. Mrs. Hance started the present movement in San Antonio to patriotize the San Antonio Public Library, and she says she has helped others in similar work in six other cities in the United States and one in Canada. She has an office in her home that contains “stacks and stacks and shelves and shelves” of documents on Americanism. She says she gets 20 or 30 pounds of literature a month through the mails, and she mails out a lot, as well. She and six other San Antonio women”good old Americans and taxpayers and housewives,” she saysdecided on the basis of articles Mrs. Hance read in the American Legion and Freeman magazines that they should check the local library to see if it contained books by subversives. “We went through every card in the card catalogue,” she said. “It took us six weeks. I was down there three or four days a week. We just went about it quietly and nobody bothered us.” The result was a celebrated report entitled, “REaD READING, A Report on Our San Antonio Public Libraries, Communist Front Authors and Their Books Therein, Compiled by Mrs. Myrtle G. Hance, Dedicated to ‘The UNINFORMED’.” She had 100 copies printed. “We just passed them out to friends,” she recalls. ‘We ‘weren’t going to cause anyone any trouble. Some people in the Legion \(Amerisomething, ‘Let’s you get in there and fight’ sort of thing.” But then a copy reached Mayor Jack White and set off a chain of events that aroused the City and the Nation with charges of “book burning,” as will be related next week. Mrs. Hance’s extraordinary document lists 118 authors “who have Communist Front affiliations” and who have books in the San Antonio Public Library system. Every book by these authors, says the report, should be “stamped on the inside front cover with a RED stamp, large enough to be seen immediately, showing that the author has Communist front affiliations, and the number of citations. The reader will then realize that in many instances he is reading Communist propaganda.” Among authors listed are Albert Einstein, Thomas Mann, Dashiell Hammett, Clifford Odets, Dorothy Parker, Irving Stone, Irwin Edman, Howard Fast, Ring Lardner, Jr., Alan Lomax, Norman Mailer, Erika Mann, Bud Schulberg, Louis Untermeyer, and Henry Wallace. Frank Lloyd Wright, the architect; Jo Davidson, the sc Aptor; Aaron Copeland, the composer; and Rockwell Kent, the artist, are also included in the report. The authors are listed with the number of “Communist Fronts” to which they allegedly belong. “A.G.” in the report means membership in a group cited by the Attorney General as subversive. The 118 authors are said to belong to from one to 85 fronts each. Among Einstein’s books listed are “Relativity,” “Out of My Later Years,” “The World as I See It,” and “The Universe and Dr. Einlate philosopher, Irwin Edman, supervised publication of editions of a number of other philosopher’s works. Among the citations under Edman’s name: “The Works of Plato \(Selected The Philosophy of Schopenhouer Dorothy Canfield Fisher’s “Understood Betsy” and “The Life of
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