to settle this argument we can settle it right here and now.” The woman stepped between them and said, “Now boys.” It had become clear that they were both fraternity men. I didn’t catch the first ,boy’s fraternity, but the second boy was in a Jewish fraternity. The first boy chided him, “Do you let any niggers in your fraternity?” I think he had him there. But then the second boy pointed to a sign carried by some students listing six people allegedly killed by the Klan. The woman said, “I don’t think the Klan had anything to do with any of those killings except maybe Viola Liuzzo.” “Well, do you condone that murder?” “Well, I don’t call it murder. She was part nigger herself, and then she had no business leaving her kids and comin’ down to Alabama and doin’ stuff that didn’t concern her.” “It’s murder, do you condone it?” “It ain’t murder to kill a snake,” she spat. The two boys introduced each other. “I’m pleased to meet you,” the second boy said. “It ain’t no pleasure to meet you,” the first one replied. Some of the robed Klansmen began handing out pamphlets, but before I could get one the cops ran everybody off of the parking lot so that the Klan could leave in their cars unhindered. One of them took off his robe, and he had on a tie under neath that said “KKK” on it. Several of the spectators had torn up the pamphlets they had received. I was unable to find a complete one. I went over to where one of the students was holding the sign with the six names on it. “Oh, I’m just holding the sign for those two fellows down there,” he said, pointing to two boys just below us in the street. “Are they S.D.S.?” I asked. “No, but I m,” he said. I asked the two boys he’d pointed out what organization they were with. They replied that they were with none and were acting as individtials. They asked me if the Klan had gone. I replied yes, they’d pulled out about five minutes ago. “Well,” said one of them, “we might as well take our sign home.” THE BANKS OVERRUN MR. PATMAN Washington, D.C. One of the more successful lobbying efforts of the 89th Congress has ended, for all practical purposes, with the biggest members of the American Bankers Association rolling over Congressman Wright Patman of Texarkana. There are a few things to be tidied up, such as a House vote and then passage of the conference committee’s bill, but legislation now seems certain of passing both houses when Congress meets again to exempt all bank mergers of the past from possible anti-trust action and to sharply restrict the Justice Department’s anti-trust authority against banks’ future mergers by giving the department just 30 days to take action after a merger has taken place. Possibly an even more important part of the legislation would set the precedent of Congress granting immunity to business already charged with anti-trust violations. The original Senate bill would have granted formal forgiveness to six bank mergers, including two already declared in court to be violations of the anti-trust laws, but there are signs that this may be just a bit too raw for Congress to swallow. The legislation being considered by the House does not go quite that far, exempting only three past mergers. From the bankers’ point of view, the legislation will be a great achievement. It will put them in the position of being the only business or industry in the country that has this special protection from antitrust prosecution by the Justice Department, except for the utilities and the trains and airlines, which must instead submit to regulations by special agencies. What the banks have squeezed out of Congress is better called an achievement than a victory because, considering the lopsidedness of the fight, the end was inevitable. One Chicago bank admitted spending $5,500 on postage and telegrams to congressmen asking their support ; and this was the only bank asked about its participation in the lobbying tactics. If you didn’t read many details of the Robert Sherrill bank merger legislation in your daily newspaper, it may be because the American Bankers Association which does not register in Washington as a lobbying outfit, an omission which it says is perfectly legal and which Patman insists is perfectly illegalhas predicted that its members will spend $228 million this year in advertising. Much of that will, of course, go to ‘the newspapers. To put the $228 million in perspective: Procter & Gamble is expected to spend $160 million for advertising this year ; General Motors, $151 million; General Foods, $85 million ; Standard Oil of New Jersey, $14.5 million. Other money, meanwhile, was being spent by the A.B.A. in Washington. Of the A.B.A.’s budget of about $3.5 million this year. $400,000 was budgeted for work at the Capitol in Washington. For lobbying? Perish the thought! A.B.A. officials insist that it is only for such things as “education,” and they must believe this is true, because not only does the A.B.A. not register as a lobbying organization, the few men on its payrolls who are so registered seem to spend precious little. Charles R. McNeill, chief lobbyist for the bankers, says he spent only $171.74 on lobbying activities in the first half of this year, and as Patman, who had McNeill at the witness table before his House banking and currency committee, commented with what almost sounded like incredulity, “You are sure not going to throw many big parties on that kind of money.” After Patman had engaged A.B.A. officials in debate on this point, they trotted a couple more employees down to register with the clerk as lobbyists and to update their expense accounts. It still didn’t come to much, and certainly not enough to substantiate Patman’s charge that “the pressure to pass a bank merger bill in 1965 has been some of the heaviest in the history of Congress.” In quest of evidence of that, one must, perhaps, look beyond even the fact that the Senate curiously passed the merger bill after only ten hours of committee hearings \(compared to six years spent preparheld no hearings at all on the amended version. Neither did the Senate pause to get the attorney general’s opinion of the bill, although he is the man who is supposed to be running the anti-trust program. There were some noticeable silences. Senator Paul Douglas of Illinois, normally a stout-hearted opponent of big business blitzes, said nothing. He is up for election next year. One of the anti-trust bank cases now pending is the merger of the Continental-Illinois National Bank and Trust Co. and the City National Bank & Trust Co. of Chicago. When the legislation got to the House, Cong. Emanuel Celler of New York told Patman privately he would like to help kill it; in fact, he tried to get Patman to allow the bill to be handled by his, Celler’s, judiciary committee, supposedly for the purpose of making the execution easier. When Patman insisted on handling the hearings in his own committee, Celler promised that he would at least be one of the chief witnesses against the merger bill. But Celler never appeared. Another of the six antitrust cases pending is the merger of two New York giants, Manufacturers Trust and the Hanover Bank, into the fourth largest bank in the United States. This is the way it went throughout the House committee. Old loyalties often snapped under the pressure. Among those steadfastly loyal to Patman’s side was Cong. Henry Gonzalez of San Antonio, who may have been influenced by the memories of those times when the bankers of his hometown tried, in his words, “to smear me with the brush of Jimmy Hoffa.” In any event, Gonzalez was often on hand to cut down the opposition with his salty summations “the bankers are trying to prove that you can be just a little pregnant.” November 12, 1965 3
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