WASHINGTON Lyndon Johnson continued to play his guessing game this week as the February 15 showdown on civil rights legislation in the Senate neared. Johnson has issued a number of vague statements about a “good” bill, but has given no specific indication of where the leadership will stand on the various proposals. His principal reassurance to civil rights advocates has been a prediction that Congress would pass “adequate and sound legislation” to protect voting rights. Senator Humphrey and other liberals reportedly have urged Johnson to take a firm stand in favor of the federal registrar plan. Johnson’s reluctance to assume the lead, many believe, is leaving the Majority Leader open to a renewed charge from the liberals that the Democratic Party is lacking leadership on important legislative qyestions. NAACP Moves Meeting Away from Texarkana DALLASThe NAACP in Dallas has announced that the five state Southwest regional conference has been re-scheduled:–Originally it was to have been held Feb. 13-14 in Texarkana, Tex.; now it will be March 4-5 in Dallas. Roy Wilkins, NAACP executive secretary, will be the principal speaker. The re-scheduling was due to inconvenience the first date would have caused, and “Dallas affords superior transportation and other facilities,” NAACP . said. THE TEXAS OBSERVER Page 8 February 5, 1960 “BOW” WILLIAMS Automobile and General Insurance Budget Payment Plan Strong Stock Companies GReenwood 2-0545 624 LAMAR, AUSTIN Let’s Abolish the Poll Tax! Over $133 Million ail eY r ndefAttie4 Insurance In Force INSURANCE COMPANY P. 0. BOX 8098 Houston, Texas HAROLD E. RILEY Vice-President and. Director of Agencies Poll Tax Hit, New Dam Asked WASHINGTON With Sen. Lyndon Johnson againfor the second time in three weekscasting his influence toward moderate change involving the South, the U.S. Senate Tuesday voted to submit to the voters in the states a constitutional amendment to abolish the poll tax as a requirement for voting, in federal elections. The House must concur by two-thirds vote and three-fourths of the states agree before the change can become law. Sen. Jacob Javits, New York Republican, proposed a substitute plan simply abolishing the poll tax by statute. This would have required only majority votes in the Congress and no further action, were it -held to be constitutional legiSlation by the courts. Johnson argued against the Javits motion, and it was tabled, 50-37. All the Senate presidential aspirants except Johnsonthat is, Humphrey, Kennedy, and Symingtonwere in favor of Javits’s plan. Johnson and Yarborough of Texas voted aye on final passage of the proposed amendment, which carried 70-18. The states with the poll tax are Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Virginia. Johnson said he has long been opposed to the poll tax; “I have done everything I know to repeal the poll tax in my state,” he told the Senate. He said the constitutional amendrrient route would result in the abolition of the poll tax soon and that he was interested in getting results rather than issues. Johnson opposed including primaries in the clean elections bill three weeks ago. A seventh dam on the Colorado River, downstream from the six dams which now make up the Lower Colorado River System, has been proposed by Sen. Lyndon Johnson as “an excellent investment for the federal government.” Johnson told the Congress that the darn would provide 180,000 acre-feet of conservation storage and would yield, even in the ‘dryest years, between 100,000 and 125,000 acre-feet of water for municipal a n d industrial use “which would otherwise be wasted in the Gulf of Mexico.” Meanwhile, Sen. Ralph Yarborough said in his weekly radio report, that a group of senators, including Yarborough, met and appeared to agree that the three areas which should be established as new national seashore areas are Padre island, the Oregon Dunes on the Pacific Coast, and Cape Cod Peninsula in Massachusetts. The Republicans stepped in with their federal referee plan and seized at least some of the initiative in the civil rights fight. Washington Post columnist George Dixon reported that Mrs. R. D. Randolph, Texas’s liberal national committeewoman, informed Democratic leaders at the recent $100-a-plate dinner in Washington that she was not for Lyndon Johnson for president. When reporters inquired why she wasn’t backing Johnson, she replied, “I didn’t know he was running.” Proposals for a reduction in the oil depletion allowance gained new impetus here in the report of the Joint Economic Committee headed by Sen. Paul Douglas of Illinois. The report urges that percentage depletion rates allowed on oil and gas be progressively reduced. Percentage depletion, the report says, permits the taxpayer to recover his investment in a property many times over. The cumulative total of these deductions is limited by the income from the property and not by the taxpayer’s investment in it, the report continues. “These provisions are grossly unjust. In addition, they encourage a wasteful rate of investment in these properties and discourage sound conservation practices.” A complete elimination of the 27.5 percent depletion rate would add between $1 billion and $1.2 billion in federal receipts, the report predicted. A more limited approach, which would retain the present depletion rate for small oil and gas operators and reduce the rate to 15 percent for large firms, would add about $400 million to federal revenue. In presenting the report, Doug Yarborough commended many groups ‘supporting the seashore area on Padre and condemned the Valley Morning Star in Harlingen, “one of the Hoiles chain of chained newspapers,” for “printing distorted accounts of the National Park Service’s report on the proposed development.” Yarborough said in a newsletter that Texans needed the “clean elections” bill passed by the Congress “becabse certain . large interests for years have exerted undue influence through unlimited money power t in political . campaigns.” He had argued on behalf of an amendment permitting detailed state reports in lieu of the federal reports that Texas did not need the law, since Texas laws are already very strict. His amendment was accepted. However, in his press statement, he said the bill extends federal campaign reporting requirements to primaries; includes state and local committees which spend more than $2,500; and places a $10,000 overall limit on the amount an individual can contr i ibute in a year. Speaker Sam Rayburn was presented the Cordell Hull award of the Committee for a National Trade Policy in Washington. las indicated he intended to push for some type of congressional action on the long-standing depletion controversy. He said he was proposing a method which would reduce the allowance from .27.5 percent to 15 percent on those having incomes of more than $3 million a year and to 21 percent on those having a gross income of from $1 million to $5 million. Those with a gross income of less than $1 million would not be touched at all under Douglas’s plan. “It would only reduce the advantages which go to the big boys, to the colossi, so to speak,” Douglas said. “But they are very influential in trying to convince everyone who owns a share of stock in an oil or gas company that I am out to scalp them; or to convince every farmer who owns a royalty right that I am trying to hurt him. “I find that when this issue is presented to the people, when it can really be gotten to the people and they see the essential justice of what we are trying to do, the popular result is most unfavorable for the prophets of gloom and doom, and they realize it.” Douglas predicted that , if the proposal for a limited reduction of the allowance is turned down, “then in the long run, the storm of popular indignation will be so great that instead of the mild measure which I am proposing, there will be a much more stringent measure.” “I am really the best friend tOe oil industry has,” Douglas said, ”but as is true in so many instances, .my friendship is not acknowledged by the oil journals or by the oil associations or by the gas associations.” ANNE and JAKE LEWIS On ‘Bank Robbery’ Sir: I thought you’d be pleased to hear that the Dallas AFL-CIO Council unanimously adopted a motion commending you and the Observer for your usual fine job of reporting, but especially for the series just started, “Bank Robbery in Broad Daylight.” This is the story that, to the best of my knowledge, has appeared only in the Congressional Record and in your paper. Congratulations! Allan L. Maley, Jr., Secretary. Treasurer, Dallas AFL-CIO Council, 1727 Young, Dallas 1, Texas. A New ‘IQ’ Test Sir: Mr. Carey asked if I favored a religious test for public office, and I will say that such a test would be undemocratic, unconstitutional, and besides, not cricket. Instead, I would favor an IQ Testthat is, IQ for Independence Quotient. E v e r y citizen should be encouraged to evaluate a candidate’s freedom from domination and influence by not only a church but any other pressure group. Most of our presidents would rate a pretty high IQ concerning religion, but how well would a Catholic do? One would have to ask what kind of a Catholic are we talking about? Mr. Carey says that a “good” Catholic President would necessarily conform to church law on faith and morals. How would a Catholic deal with a conflict between church law and civil law? Consider the matter of birth control. Most Americans consider birth control primarily an economic problem, while the Catholic Church says it is a religious matter. Should a Catholic President be allowed thus to thwart our laws? Furthermore Mr. Carey assures us that there is no compulsion for Catholics to obey church law. I may be mistaken, but is it not true that if a Catholic supports a law, say favoring birth control, he would be committing a mortal sin, and unless he repented and received forgiveness from a priest he would be denied the sacra Subscribe to The Texas Observer ments and would thus incur excommunication? This is one of the most insidious forms of coercion that I can think of. Is it any wonder that Catholics rarely ever fail to conform to their church’s domination, unless they are willing to leave their church? I’m afraid that I’d have to give a “good” Catholic an IQ rating of zero! D. J. Norton, 323 Timberlane, San Antonio. A Herculean Job Sir: Your recent articles in which Mr. Wright Patman sets forth his views on giving the people’s credit to the banking interests and saddling the people with billions of debt make me boil. I opposed the , method of financing World War I as a great betrayal of the masses, and especially the men who fought that war. . . . Millions had gone to their banks during the war, under pressure, mortgaged their property and bought “Liberty Bonds;’ and . . . these bonds went back into the hands of the powerful rich at a discount. . . . Then the big dailies set up a howl about us not honoring our national debt and pressured Congress into passing a stabilization act. Then bonds shot up above par, and how the fat boys did clean up. . . Mind you, these same newspapers had built up a case of near treason if one did not buy or sell bonds during the war. . . . You doubtless know how the big banking and business interests financed Dick Nixon to run against Jerry Voorhis, and smeared him as a . Pinko, his crime being that he wrote a book about this same stuff that Patman has been telling us about …. Those big boys have such a death grip on the sources of information and its distortion, it seems a herculean job to get the masses to read and study means to make this country function as an economic Democracy. Joe E. Webb, attorney at law, MadisonVille, Tex. Chiefly Postal Business Books Shown by Appointment STIEFEL’S Dealer in Rare, Out-of-Print Books 131210th St., Huntsville, Texas Telephone 5-4449 Use our International Search Service for those hard to find books at no extra cost to you. Paul Douglas,’The Oilman’s Friend’ RELIABLE REAL ESTATE SERVICE Arthur Hajecate METROPOLITAN REALTY CO. 4340 \(Telephone Road HOUSTON, TEXAS
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