Page 2


batch of participation bonds were snapped up at an interest rate of up to 5.75% just as opponents of the bill had warned would happen. In another matter, I am happy to report that the combined efforts of Patman and Gonzalez were successful in defense of the public’s interest. Patman has been engaged in a long and involved campaign to make the banks divulge the true ownership of their stock. His goal has been to see how many unsavory characters are in banking and to see if commercial banks are using their trust accounts to gain control of other commercial banks, setting up a kind of secret dictatorship in banking. To conduct such an investigation, Patman must have subpoena powers, of course, and the domestic finance subcommittee, which is handling the investigation, approved such powers for him. Lately he has been coming closer and closer to the big banks who dread his approach. Consequently, friends of the bankers eleven Republicans and six Democrats -on Patman’s committee recently tried to wrest the subpoena powers from him. A special hearing was called to fight it out. Things did not look too good for Patman, but he beat back the opposition, with the valient assistance of Congressman Charles Weltner of Georgia and especially of Henry Gonzalez, who came in at just the right psychological moment, drawing on his savage parliamentarian training in the Texas Senate, to demand that the hearing be halted immediately and “we get back to some important matters.” His counter-insurgency was so sudden and so unrelenting that it broke the back of the conservative rebels, and after that the hearing went Patman’s way. The bank investigationwhich among other things will reveal the real owners of some Texas banks tied to politics from the White House down will continue. 16 The Texas Observer I Dialogue Blair Reeves on the ‘Thumb in Pie’ I have just read Judge Charles W. Grace’s account of the “thumb in pie” incident featured on my TV documentary, “Bexar County in Crisis,” which is now fondly called “The Spook Show.” To keep the records straight, I want to point out that the incident as related by Judge Grace was not the basis for the sticky thumb in the pie. This is the story: When Judge Armour T. Ball, judge of the County Civil Court at Law, learned that, at the instance of Judge Grace, a bill had been introduced to the legislature transferring condemnation proceedings \(the county court, he approached Judge Grace for an explanation as to why this action was taken. Judge Grace told Judge ,Ball, “I am going to stick my finger in every pie in Bexar County. I am going to make the office of county judge the most powerful office in Bexar County.” For some unexplained reason, the finger got changed to a thumb in the TV program. Judge Grace also used this “finger in pie” expression to at least one other county employee, whose name I cannot divulge. I have been a subscriber and reader of the Texas Observer fora .number of years and have always been impressed by its objectivity. I was, therefore, somewhat surprised when I was not contacted relative to the Bexar County county judge’s race in the last Observer. Be that as it may, I want to take this opportunity to tell you that, in my opinion, I ran a hard and truthful campaign. In regard to the statement attributed to Mayor McAllister that if Grace was reelected, the Negroes and Mexicans would take over San Antonio, I want to go on record as stating that I did not hear Mayor McAllister make such a statement. I further want ‘to state that I do not believe any racial group has a particular design on San Antonio. I am an integrationist, and have worked many hours for the cause of ntegration. If Mayor McAllister did make such a statement, I am no more responsible for that than Judge Grace is responsible for Jake Johnson’s statement that the business leaders of San Antonio had better lay off Judge Grace because that was his \(Jake legislation. Bexar County will have progressive government with me as its county judge. In my opinion, I will accomplish more than Judge Grace would have accomplished towards progressive government. Blair Reeves, Brown, Daniel, Reeves & Davila, 601 Tower Life Bldg., San Antonio 5, Tex. “That isn’t correct,” comments Judge Grace in response to Reeves’ letter. “I made the statement at one time to Emmett Cater that I wanted to know everything that’s going on. The county judge has an interest in every matter affecting the coun ty and should serve on every official board. He ought to be aware of everything that’s going on ; he ought to have the power. That doesn’t mean that he’s going to necessarily exercise it. But as to the expression, ‘finger in pie,’ so help me God I never used that expression. I didn’t say it at all, to Ball or anyone else.” Grace said the remark about Negroes and Mexicans taking over had been made by Walter McAllister, Jr., not the mayor. The Observer had misunderstood Grace on this point. The Observer went by to see Judgenominee Reeves during its research for the story on San Antonio politics, but he was unavailable and was not to return until after the Observer’s deadline. A calling card was left at Reeves’ law office.Ed. Face Value? Punch of London recently published a cartoon which was reproduced in the New York Times of May 1, 1966. It shows a huge, dark wall across the upper part of which a man on a ladder has painted in large, white letters, “Yanks Go Home.” Standing or squatting by the wall, seven other figures, representing different factions and nations, have painted or started to paint the same slogan in smaller letters. To the far ‘right an American G.I., with Lyndon Johnson’s face, has almost completed painting “Yank,” but then seems uncertain about continuing. The legend under the picture reads: “How can I put it in a face-saving way?”Eubanks Carsner, 3920 Bandini, Riverside, Calif. Two Latin-American Puzzles Your last issue, which is mainly about the Latin-American poor, brings to my mind a couple of factors that have often puzzled, if not amazed me. I hope my many Latin friends will forgive me, since I only wish them well. One: there is a tradition ‘amongst them of the rich exploiting the poor at least as strong as with us. This results today in many of their influential people, who might be speaking a good word in high places, being just as calloused to their plight as any of us. And two: Often even the poorest maintain their own prejudices. Some of my Latin acquaintances are even more rabidly anti-Negro than any Anglo I know. Charles Gordon Zey, 129 Chicago, McAllen, Tex. Liberals Should Back Tower . . . . I humbly but firmly believe that the proper action for liberal Democrats in Texas is active participation in behalf of the “real” Senate conservative, John Tower. This is another tweedle-dum or tweedle-dee decision for us.Rev. J. C. “Star” Williams, 3610 Weber Ave., Fort Worth, Tex. Pena To Be Commended [With respect to the controversy in your pages between Albert Pena and Herbert Calderon, 1 it seems to me that Mr. Pena wants to help Latins help themselves to a better life rather than have them on relief rolls. . . Mr. Pena is to be commended, not condemned.Peter E. Ryba, 11231 Midway Rd., Dallas, Tex.