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Let those flatter who fear, it is not an American art.JEFFERSON College for the Able SAN ANTONIO Until he was elected Senator Yarborough had to take his lumps from the Texas dailies and haymaker back as best he could from the stump. Now he has a research staff, writers, his senatorship, and more friends and power than Lynn Landrum or Amon Carter, Jr., can suavely ignore. Who is to know, for example, how much there is to the Scripps-Howard report that he is being given serious consideration by Democratic leaders for the vice-presidency? Recently several Texas dailies have indulged in coarse argument against Yarborough’s “Cold War G.I. Bill,” which the United States Senate passed 51 to 37 and will have its run in the House of Representatives early next year. Yarborough has enjoyed using the dailies’ own linotype-shillelaghs to clobber their own editors. The only persuasive point against Yarborough’s bill is made by Senator Kennedy, who argues it does not go far enough. As might be guessed, the Texas dailies attack the measure because it involves a public expenditure. They broadcast the idiocy that government spending is an evil, even though business has prospered more under free-spending government than ever it did under penurious Republicanism. How many businessmen are so blind they think Eisenhower helped them when he vetoed the public works legislation for dams, they would build and channels they would dredge? YARBOROUGH’S BILL, the Veteran’s Readjustment Assistance Act of 1959, is based on inequities created by the fact that only 45 percent of the young men of the country are drafted for military service to bear the burdens’ of the Cold War all of us should share. College or fatherhood deferments give the effectively exempted youths substantial advantages over the draftees. Yarborough’s bill helps Cold War veterans -continue their education after its interruption by military service. Yarborough told a vets’ group in Miami recently : “These contractors are making all the big profits, anyhow … If it’s a ‘Cold War’ for the manufacturer who makes the missile in -the U.S.A., why isn’t it a ‘Cold War’ for the soldier who mans the bases in Turkey to launch that missile?” The highest estimate of the cost is $300 million a year. Yarborough reasons that World War II veterans educated under the GI bill are now paying $1 billion extra into the Treasury as a result of their extra education, a fact provided him, he says, by the Bureau of the Census. “Education,” he reasons, “is the one certain method of strengthennig the taxpaying public.” “Let’s Not Put Peacetine GIs on Same Basis With War Vets,” the Houston Chronicle insists. In the plausibility of that argument abides the suggestion of its weakness, for Yarborough’s bill amounts to an extension of free public education to half the college-age population if they can make their grades. Demurring from the labor and public welfare’s Published by Texas Observer Co., Ltd. Entered as second-class matter, April 26, 1937, at the Post Office at Austin, Texas, under the Act of March 3, 1879. SEPTEMBER 4, 1959 Ronnie Dagger Editor and General Manager Larry Goodwyn, Associate Editor Sarah Payne, Office Manager Published once a week from Austin, Texas. Delivered postage prepaid $4 per annum. Advertising rates available on request. Extra copies 10c each. Quantity prices available on orders. 9-5 favorable report on the Yarborough bill, Sen Kennedy said, “A broad program of federal assistance to students pursuing courses of higher education is highly desirable and I would firmly support it if it were to be made available to all young people on the basis of their ability.” The Chronicle wants to go back to yesterday ; Yarborough wants to get on with tomorrow by the most likely route ; Kennedy wants to get ahead a year or two, anywaysay to 1960. THE PAYMENT per student under Yarborough’s plan would he $110 a month, which will buy what $78 bought in 1952. Students who fell behind in scholarship would have to drop back to a program of loans, subject to repayment. Four million veterans since Korea would be eligible ; about a third of them would take the schooling. Such a program would improve the intellectual and technical skills of the population at a time when the nation is challenged not only by Russia but by the rising and aggressive populations of the Asiatic and African continents. “This bill is not a giveaway,” Yarborough argues ; “it is an investment in the future of America.4If this bill is wrong, what are our national aims and aspirations ?” CONSISTENT, and justified on its own merits, Yarborough’s GI bill could go a long way toward extending the ideal of free public education to those fit for college work. Let the able advance !we’ll all be better for it. R.D. AUSTIN Sometimes even the most routine research, the ponderous plodding through old volumes in some quiet old historical library, can yield the single document that illustrates, germanely, how things really were, what the antagonists really thoughtin short, a document that reconstructs the intellectual climate of another era. Researching on the economics of power in Texas, this reporter came upon such a document. one that seemed to spring to life out of the early 1930’s the desperation, the indignation, and the ferment of the Great Depression. The thin, cloth-bound volume, running to less than 50 pages, Contained the testimony of a Texas lawyer, Elwood Fouts, representing independent oilmen before a congressional committee during the bitter economic struggle for survival that grew out of the discovery of the fabulous East Texas field. In the relative economic tranquility of the 1950’s it is easy to round off in our memories the sharp edges of dissension that punctuated the depression years ; the ringing economic appraisal of lawyer Fouts resharpens the edges, recaptures for the reader the feeling of despair that was the chief reaction of many men to the huge, ruthless industrial technocracy .that could produce efficiency in production but not jobs for human beings. 7 EDITORIAL and BUSINESS OFFICE: 504 West 24th St., Austin, Texas. Phone GReenwood 7-0746. HOUSTON OFFICE: 1010 Dennis, Mrs. R. D. Randolph. 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. We are dedicated to the whole truth, to human values above all interests, to the rights of man as the foundation of democracy; we will take orders from none but our own conscience, and never will we overlook or misrepresent the truth to serve the interests of the powerful or cater to the ignoble in the hinfian spirit. BY COINCIDENCE, this week’s Observer touches on the responses of another man, a labor organizer, to those dislocated times ; the feature story on the articulate, dedicated San Antonian, George Lambert, is an apt companion piece to Fouts’s battle with what he called the “great destroying corporate aristocracies” of the major oil companies. That Fouts is today a zealot of the far right, architect of the supersecret, hate-spreading political organization called Freedom In Action, while Lambert, a dedicated liberal, is working with San Antonio’s poverty-ridden garment workers as a $92 a week labor organizerthese latter day trips up different forks in the road only add another meaning to the ideas each advanced in the depression. There is an incompleteness about Fouts’s prose of that era ; it is fractured. with internal contradictions in logic as if his views did not flow from a single body of fundamental belief, but were unrelated, individual responses to conflicting conditions; in retrospect, it is easy to see how, in his later years, he could fly off into such pathetic yet dangerous tangents as his authoritarian Freedom in Action crusade. In the thirties, Fouts hated the majoroil companies, called them “evil” and “false.” He also hated the federal government and warned his congressional listeners against “the novel proposal that the commerce clause be expanded for the purpose of vesting in Congress the power to assume supreme and complete legislative dominion over all of fairs of all of the people of the nation.” There is no necessary contradiction here, given the assumption that his anti-monopoly, anti-government ideas were advanced in the name of the people. But Fouts had a peculiar contempt for people, too. He spoke of the “unwise emotional action of mob rule actuated by some great passion of the moment” and counseled against the “direct rule of the majority.” He thought the concept of states rights was the greatest feature of the .federal constitution because it substituted “deliberate judgment” and the “edict of reason” .for the direct rule of the majority “which has always” been unwise. From this plethora of hates. Fouts’s contradictions flowed : Centralized government was bad but to stop monopoly, the government should revamp the anti-trust 1 aws to make them stronger and cut down the “centralized commercial aristocracies.” We have too much federal government, but to stop the integrated oil companies, the pipe line business should he combined under the control of the Interstate Commerce Commission. Government. should not meddle in the lives of its citizens, but “a citizen does not have an inalienable right to set up these great destroying. agencies.” It is curiously appropriate that a copy of Fouts’s address to the congressional committee back in 1934 was placed in the University of Te,lcas Barker Historical Library by one J. E. Haley. J. Evetts Haley, who regards himself as a true. liberal , who waged a tenacious fight against bureaucracy to win the right to feed his own cattle with his own wheat the same J. Evetts Haley who dangles the scalps, of “wrong-thinking” professors, made a mockery of academic freedom at Texas Tech, and helped move that sibling institution toward a hopeless, provincial shell functioning feebly on the West Texas Plains. BOTH Fouts and Haley, bitter, resolute partisans shored up lw some of the logic but little of the spirit of what they are fond of calling “true, 19th Century liberalism.” are today the volunteer pawns of the corporate giants they fought in their youth, the front men for a garbled conservatism that covertly serves corporate. balance sheets while overtly spreading “true Americanism.” George Lambert, too, has mellowed from the impassioned rhetoric of the thirties. But, today working with San Antonio’s Mexicans, he still faithfully serves the central spirit of that troubled, experimental, truth-seeking era in a way that the bitter frustrated oil lawyer from Houston has never understood. L.G. THE TEXAS OBSERVER Ways of Changing As Times Change