The-Texas Observer G r .geekly Newspaper t \(A.;-3 105.0C A South Volume 53 ‘UST 17, 1962 15c Per Copy Number 20 NO MATCHING FUNDS Texas Could Lose Welfare Money AUSTIN Either inability to expand Texas child welfare programs, or the curtailment of some present welfare activities may result from the state’s lack of money with which to match federal funds, Weldon Watson, assistant commissioner of the Department of Public Welfare, told the Observer this week. Federal allotments of which $304,356 would be given to Texas during the 1963 fiscal year, and $611,368 next yearwere recently voted by Congress to be used for the construction of state-administered day schools. In order to qualify for this money, the state must match a government-specified sum of $1,329,000. As it has only $1,003,832 for the purpose, it is approximately $325,000 short of the goal. The day schools, Watson explained, would be primarily attended by pre-school-age children in low income groups. Parents of such children would have to pay little or no fees for this service. At present, the state does not administer day schools, which are privately owned. Its only connection with these schools is the licensing of them, if they meet certain standards laid down by the Department of Public Welfare. Are such day schools necessary? “We haven’t decided yet,” Watson said. He and commissioner John H. Winters will make a detailed study of the situation, as well as of the provision which was written into the welfare revision bill, which Congress enacted last month. Their recommendation will AUSTIN, WASHINGTON The Observer is informed that correspondence between members of the staff of Vice President Lyndon Johnson and the Agriculture Department on the Billie Sol Estes case in January, 1961, is in the possession of Senate investigators in Washington, although it has not, as yet, been presented in public hearings. The Observer’s authoritative source says the letters from Johnson’s office were written by Cliff Carter and Walter Jenkins, both high-up Johnson aides. While press reports on the Washington investigations as they bear on Texas politics have indicated Estes’ contributions to Senator Ralph Yarborough with some frequency, only a few accounts have discussed Johnson’s part in the Estes affair. Under a headline, “Estes Aide Got No Help From LBJ Office on Rule,” the Houston Post in June reporteci Carter’s sending a protest from Estes enterprises against an impending cotton allotment transfer ruling on to the Agriculture Department on Jan. 24, 1961. The ruling was adopted on Feb. 17, 1961; three days later, Agriculture Secretary Orville Freeman himself replied to Johnson, defending the ruling. In its be submitted to the three-man Public Welfare Board which meets in September. The day-school program, if instituted in Texas, would dovetail with another federal program Texas will soon begin participating ina rehabilitation project for low-income mothers who lack Ekills enough to get a job. The program teaches women these skills, with the intention of providing them the means and the incentive to go off the relief rolls and into the working category. Many women, however, it is thought, will not seek employment despite having learned a skill, if they can find no means of having their children cared for while they are at work. The day schools would satisfy this need. Crucial Question Texas has tried such rehabilitation programs on its own, Watson says, but due to limited funds and personnel have been mere pilot projects in small areas. The programs were successful, though. Watson sees this rehabilitation measure as much more effective than paying low-income mothers a relatively high relief check and not encouraging them to find work. Thus one crucial question which the Public Welfare Board must decide at its September meeting is whether the forthcoming rehabilitation program for low-income mothers will be effective if not backed up by a day school program. Watson stressed that failing to match government funds would account of this correspondence, the Houston Press a short time after the appearance of the Houston Post story, said Freeman assured Johnson the department would be “reasonable” in handling the Estes transfers. This transpired a year before Yarborough and Cong. J. T. Rutherford, Odessa, attended a meeting at the department having to do with Estes’ allotments. It appears from the context of the controversy that the Johnson office’s official curiosity occurred well before Yarborough’s participation. Not in Good Faith Herein simplified outlineis what was going on. Estes had been “buying” the cotton allotments of farmers whose land had been claimed by government action. The “contract” of purchase was a fancy; in fact Estes was paying the farmers for their allotments. Paul E. Kamerick, an investigator for the McClellan subcommittee investigating Estes, told the subcommittee it was obvious neither buyer nor seller in these deals was acting in good faith. On Dec. 20, 1960, the month before the interest from the Johnson office, a Washington Agriculture Department official, H. L. Manwaring, told the Texas ASCS TEXANS OPPOSE CLOTURE AUSTIN, WASHINGTON Senators John Tower and Ralph Yarborough of Texas were among the 27 senators who voted against the first filibuster-gag in the Senate in 35 years this week. The successful 63-27 cloture vote shut off the filibuster against the Kennedy plan to establish a privatelyowned, profit-making corporation that would own the space satellites communications system. At one point this week, Yarborough called for a laying aside of the bill until what he construed to be “a charge of bribery” could be investigated. Sen. Russell Long, D.-La., one of the filibusterers, had suggested, although he did not state, in a series of questions that an offer had been made that a senator could own a telephone building in his own state through a telephone company loan and that he would probably wind up worth between $5 million and $25 million. Wednesday, by margins of three to one, amendment after amendment was defeated by the space bill’s coalition of Republicans and administration-b a c k i n g Democrats. Tempers among the warring Democrats rubbed raw. Yarborough delivered a speech against the space bill on the floor Wednesday, although Texas dailies paid it little or no heed. \(The next issue of the Observer will During the cursive senatorial discourses on the bill, Yarborough placed material in the record, spelled speakers with some questions, and told his fellow committee that the proposed plan was a scheme to sell allotments and should not be approved by the county committee in Pecos. All of Estes’ transfers’ were approved at county and state levels after and despite this official memo from Washington, Kamerick said. Eight days before the Johnson office interest, state ASC officials from Texas, New Mexico, and Oklahoma discussed the question at a meeting in Washington. A regulation was being considered to require farmers to appear before county ASC committees in counties to which they were transferring their allotments to convince the committees that the transfers were bona fide. On Jan. 24, 1961, A. B. Foster Jr., general manager of Estes’ businesses, wrote Cliff Carter, administrative assistant to Johnson, saying the regulation would be unreasonable and would inconvenience farmers. Carter sent a copy of Foster’s letter to the Agriculture Department with a “buck slip” Johnson’s aides insist was quite routine, and obviously noncommittal. It said, “For consideration as the communication herewith submitted may warrant, and for a report thereon in duplicate to accompany return AUSTIN A group with which Dr. Walter Kerr has acknowledged his association sponsored a speech by Fred Schwarz that Kerr describes as anti-Jewish at the Tyler high school auditorium Aug. 7-8. Kerr says he was made “heartsick” by Schwarz’s performance on this occasion. Kerr is the evangelist-director of the “Walter Kerr Youth Force for God and Freedom” which has established liaison with about 150 Texas public school districts, largely through the official assistance of Texas Education Commissioner J. W. Edgar \(Obs., Aug. Youth Force FOR In a second long discussion with the Observer, Kerr acknowledged that about three years ago, he introduced the right-wing radio commentator, Paul Harvey, who was sponsored in Tyler by the Tyler Freedom Forum. Kerr defended the Tyler Freedom Forum to the Observer. He said that every minister in town subscribed to it. He said “The Freedom Forum is one thing. The sade is another thing.” Kerr did not tell the Observer although he was speaking subsequent to the Aug. 7-8 eventthat Schwarz’s appearance in Tyler Aug. 7-8 was, according to a flyer that has been sent to the Observer, “sponsored by the Tyler Freedom Forum, 417 S. Chilton, Tyler, Texas.” Kerr’s address is also listed in Tyler at 417 S. Chilton. Kerr acknowledged he attended Schwarz’s speech at the high school. He said of it: “Boy, I tell you, he spells out a death struggle with the Jews. I was quite amazed and really ratheir heartsick . . . . He speaks of a complete boycott of Schick Razor Co.” Schwarz said, Kerr continued, that “New York is controlled by them,” that is, by Jews. “He said the thing is divided down the middle, Christians and Jews.” Kerr also told the Observer, “He came here the other day sponsored by his own bunch and got the high school auditorium trying to raise money to go back to New York.” According to the red, white, and blue flyer, which shows Schwarz at a microphone, “the internationally famous anti-communist author and lecturer, Dr. Fred Schwarz,” would speak on “The Communist Threat, Inside and Out, with special emphasis on communist activities in New York City,” at Tyler High auditorium Aug. 7-8. Pictures are shown labeled “Scenes of communist picket lines protesting a recent lecture by Dr. Schwarz at Madison Square Garden in New York City.” Lubbock Forum Kerr told the Observer last week that his approach to the subject of patriotism is positive, not negative. He said he stresses character, not fear, and would avoid any domestic political implications. It is of interest that May 1-3, 1962, at the Pioneer Hotel in Lubbock, the second annual Southwestern “Freedom Forum” was held, and Kerr spoke there twice: once on “Communism in Our World,” and again on “Know Your EnemyChallenge to This Generation.” Kerr told the Observer his program has nothing to do with the far-right. The President of Lubbock Christian College, F. W. Mattox, in a “message from the President” on the Lubbock Forum program, said: “Inspired by Mr. K himself and directed by Gus Hall in the USA, we are all amazed at the success of the communist campaign to smear all programs designed to emphasize the dangers facing constitutional government. “Americans were quick to accept the journalistic build-up of Castro as non-communist. Today, the same journalistic efforts are directed to discredit any warnings voiced against communism in America. All vocal patriotism is’ ‘radicalism’ and many good patriots are now afraid to speak up for America. “To analyze this campaign to smear the anti-communist efforts and to ascertain where we are in the struggle to preserve freedom Wilson Enters Prayer Case AUSTIN Questions concerning the effect of the recent prayer decision by the U.S. Supreme Court on Texas Schools were addressed to attorney general Will Wilson Tuesday by J. W. Edgar, commissioner of education. Edgar was relaying to Wilson a series of queries which were sent him by school officials in Port Arthur. These are the questions: 1.Can a school board permit a student or teacher to say the blessing before meals in a public school ? 2.Can schools authorize “a period of silent meditation” during the meal period? 3.Is Bible reading permissible in home rooms or on assembly programs? 4.Are public prayers permissible at football games involving public school teams, or at other school-sponsored events? Until Edgar’s action Tuesday, the general attitude among Texas school officials seemed to be one of wait and see. As a large number of Texas schools have prayer periods or chapel services, this attitude entailed the continuance TYLER GROUP SPONSORS ‘Crusade’ Leader Disheartens Kerr I REFLECTIONS ON ESTES, LBJ
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