SEND US YOUR NOMINATIONS TODAY! IN THE TEXAS LEGISLATURE .. . WHO ARE YOUR CHOICES FOR: Small-Small Loan Shark Man of the Year Bankers’ Man of the Year Juvenile Delinquency Crime Cup Winners will be chosen on the basis of thoroughness, zeal, effectiveness, friendliness, and dogmatism. Only those gentlemen who have proved their devotion beyond the call of duty will be considered. Senator Lane is eligible. 8 The House Escheat Bill COINS IN TROUSERS Again? Observer Notebook Despite the fact that Sen. Parkhouse says that it smacks of communism and Sens. Hudson, Reagan, and Calhoun have raised the expected ruckus, the Daniel-Hughes escheat bill has passed the House by an impressive vote and is now in the hands of the Senate. We wonder if that illustrious chamber is going to be allowed to get away with homicide again. The House version is a pretty good bill. It requires the banks to advertise their dormant accounts, helping to find the legitimate owners. It prohibits, generally, the gradual destruction of those accounts through service charges. It requires the banks to turn abandoned accounts under $25 over Don Politico of the Light, that astute analyst of the Bexar political scene, writes this week that San Antonio’s liberal Democratic coalition is in fine fettle for the ’62 elections and that the Republicans and the conservative Democrats are as severely divided as ever. He also notes: “Negro leaders who have gone down the line for a lengthy succession of liberal coalition candidates now feel it’s time they were awarded a legislative spot.” Don has an excellent point. Beginning in the 1960 elections, when the Bexar coalition swept to victory in all but one legislative election and overnight made San Antonio into a liberal city, there has been one special election triumph after another: Henry Gonzalez to Congress, Franklin Spears to Gonzalez’ vacancy in the state Senate, Rudy Esquivel to Spears’ place in the House. As an integral part of this superb Bexar coalition, the Negroes deserve an opportunity to have a candidate in the next elections. San Antonio is the ideal spot to attempt the breakthrough in the state House. It would, of course, be a short-term gamble, the odds would probably be against success; but, long-range, a campaign by a Negro for the Texas House Out of self-interest if nothing else, we do not, of course, concur with Sen. Tower’s conclusion that American liberals are a bunch of crackling visionaries, but we do commend him for his forthright statement this week against the use of “name-calling demagoguery” by conservatives against opponents of good-faith in the politi Texas Republicans, in their zeal to prompt the Big Switch, warn against the “trend to socialism” in state government ; conservative Democrats, like Will Wilson, announce for office and vow “no more spending.” It is the statistics, cold, bare, and disheartening, that not only furnish the rebuttal, but tell the true story of state government in Texas. Examine the latest annual report of the Department of Public Welfare. Do you know that Texas contributes one-half as much money as other Americans through state and local 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. JANUARY 13, 1962 Willie Morris Editor and General Manager Bob Sherrill, Associate Editor Sarah Payne, Office Manager Ronnie Bugger, Contributing Editor to the state. Accounts over $25 also must be reported. The law, of course, has long vested the ownership of abandoned accounts in the state. The problem has been, quite simply, that the state has not known where dormant accounts existed or how much money was in them. When the banks make their reports to the state, they will admit that they have dormant accounts; they then will not be able to make their service charges on them ; the attorney general, officially aware that the stateowned accounts are in existence, will then have to evaluate his own course of action. And under those circumstances, it would be exceedingly difficult for an attorney general not to act. would be a good and worthwhile thing for the whole state. The time for a breakthrough has long since past. The fact that Negroes in Texas, who cornprise some 12.4 percent of the population, do not have a single representative in the state legislature is a travesty and a failure of the democratic system. During the regular session last year, when the East Texas segregationists had their anti-sit-in bill, one liberal legislator put the matter to us in interesting terms : the atmosphere in the. Texas House, as personal relations go, is remarkably civilized; even vociferous segregationists like Joe Chapman and John Allen, for instance, are decent and well-intentioned human beings; it would be no easy thing for them to stand on the floor of the House and defend some outrageous piece of racist legislation, then have to look a fellow representative, a Negro, man-to-man in the eye. We have seen in the House in the last several years the effect the Latin members Rosas and De la Garza and Trevino and the othershave had on racist outbursts in the legislature, and on the whole tone of political discourse there. San Antonio is the place to begin. cal arena. In effect if not in philoso phy, Tower was condemning the whole McCarthyistic stress in hyper conservative circles in’ recent years, and it was good to hear the warning raised by a Republican from Texas at a banquet given by, no less, Human Events magazine. services? That Texas takes more federal money than 35 other states, while providing less state and local money than 39 other states? That the caseload per state social worker is higher in Texas than in any other state? That Texas ranks 42nd in oldage assistance, 42nd in aid to the needy blind, 45th in aid to dependent children, 39th in aid to the permanently and totally disabled? And on and on. Ask them how they answer the facts. Or do they care to at all? Published once a week from Austin, Texas. Delivered postage prepaid $5.10 per annum. Advertising rates available on request. Extra copies 15c each. Quantity prices available on order. EDITORIAL and BUSINESS OFFICE: 504 West 24th St., Austin, Texas. Phone GReenwood 7-0746. HOUSTON OFFICE: Mrs. R. D. Randolph, 2131 Welch, Houston 19, Texas. AUSTIN LAST SUNDAY’S San Antonio Light had a number of fascinating items on its editorial page. including a column by Bishop Sheen with the snappy heading “Fewer Smooches for Pet Pooches.” But we were especially struck by an editorial which regretted Carlos P. Romulo’s leaving his ambassadorial post in this country to take on the new job as president of the University of the Philippines. The Light wrote chummily, ” ‘Rommy,’ as his intimates know him” etc. This, to us, bespoke an intimacy with and a concern for world affairs which we were convinced would be reflected in the Light’s news columns. Checking, we found, however, that our expectations were somewhat extravagant. The Light is not quite as concerned with world affairs as that “Rommy” business might lead you to think. There were 82 pages in Sunday’s paper, or, by our calculations, 13,120 column inches. That’s thirteen thou, sand. Of these, 170 column inches were devoted to foreign news, or roughly one page of the 82 pages was given over to news from abroad. And even then, the news was not the sort that would exactly equip readers of The Light \(a Hearst newsamong the stories were items about: a stabbing in Liverpool \(sacrifice of thief in the Berlin zoo, atomic machines in Ottawa, a British soldier given leave to visit his lovesick fiancee. The only front page foreign news story was one and a half inches long, out of London, and it told how coins wear holes in trouser pockets. AS ANOTHER PHASE in its continuing awards to outstanding Texas legislators, the Observer during the special session will select three worthy lawmakers for special honors. During the regular session, laurels were given the following : TMA Rookie of the Year, TMA Man of the Year, TMA Batboy of the Year, Pipelines Rookie of the Year, Pipelines Man of the Year, Pipelines Utility Infielder, Neanderthal of the Year, Most Disappointing Neanderthal of the Year \(for Moving Back and Forth Too Often Between the Neanderthal and Crocede, the Observer Prize for Being Supreme, the William Abington Sportsmanship Award, the Jim Yancey Good Conduct Medal, and the Frates Seeligson Purple Heart. The response in the legislature was so heartening that we are offering Oscars during the January session to the following : Small-Small Loan Shark Man of the Year, to the legislator who most perfectly exemplifies those rare qualities of initiative, ambition, good-will, and usury; Bankers’ Man of the Year, to the man with the most unescheatable temperament ; and the Juvenile Delinquency Crime Cup, to the individual who best typifies the 18th Century attitude on juvenile parole. As before, decisions will be made on the basis of friendliness, efficiency, thoroughness, dogmatism, and devotion beyond the call of duty. A nomination blank may be found below. This time, we might add, Senator Lane, who had previously disqualified himself because he had won so many trophies, will be considered eligible. THIS is the time for measuring the first twelve months of the Kennedy administration, as Observer columnist Robert Spivack has done elsewhere in this issue. TRB in The New Republic, who pauses for stocktaking at the beginning of each year, writes in the current issue: “Kennedy’s first job was to build public support. Judging by Gallup poll ratings, he has been remarkably successful. By bucking the Catholic hierarchy on school aid he has almost calmed Protestant fears and made some leaders ashamed of themselves. He assembled a remarkable team of advisers. His extraordinarily high popularity is unnatural, however, and hints that he is not giving very bold leadership on controversial issues. No really great President gets 78 percent public support till he’s dead. We trust Kennedy’s burning desire to be ‘great’ will take care of this. “Much of Kennedy’s popularity springs from Nixon supporters who discover Kennedy is a moderate and who hope he is a conservative. The electrifying ‘let’s-get-going’ slogan is almost forgotten. The missile gap which Kennedy assailed in the campaign turns out to be non-existent. The 1960-61 recession \(Eisenhower’s ruary, 1961, and virtually cured itself, with the favorable climate Kennedy supplied. How about the radical 1960 Democratic platform ? One depressing commentary is in Theodore White’s The Making of the President 1960 in which White omits all mention of the platform in his account of the Democratic convention ! He remarks airily later, `No platform nor any program advanced by either major American party has any purpose beyond expressing emotion.’ If this comment is literally true \(and we don’t think it ordinary Democratic document was a hoax. “Kennedy has brought a refreshing new mood to the White House after the Eisenhower sugar-candy fluff. His administration is cool, elegant, selfpossessed, reserved, pragmatic, intellectual, and realistic. It is compassionate \(note the repeated strong fights for broadened social security, medical aid for the aged, schools and public agerial type, not evangelists. It is no home for a Hubert Humphrey, a Fiorello LaGuardia, a Teddy Roosevelt. It is given to moderation, a low key and understatement. Managerial techniques are valuable in dealing with conservative congressmen but the public needs something more if it is to press forwardit needs elan, enthusiasm and leadership; warmth, passion and confidence.” -7itne to &gin od to -Wear at y ._7he Jach THE TEXAS OBSERVER 4W-ai t st
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