Saturday, April 8, 1961 . . . Page 10
Nixon Ready To Renew Campaign
-But Is the Rest of the Country?
. . . and soundest comment yet on
the Fort Lauderdale youth riots:
"Most of them behaved perfectly
all right. Put 20,000 grown-ups in
the same spot and you'd find 150 or
so of them stirring up just as much
trouble. Maybe more."
Many, including ardent supporters of
Richard Nixon, will question his decision,
if that's what it is, to reopen the 1960 campaign.
"The five-month honeymoon is over,"
the former vice president was quoted this
week in dispatches from San Diego.
He is living and practicing law in Los
Angeles. He had gone to San Diego to
accept a Kiwanis citizenship award.
The first major Nixon speech since the inauguration of President Kennedy
is set for May 5 in Chicago. Others will follow in
Des Moines and Detroit.
The question being raised by some former
Nixon backers is whether the time is right.
Nixon . . . attacks
John F. Kennedy is
finding Congress wary of his spending
program, but even persons who disagree
with the President on legislation are admiring the drive and hustle he has
brought to the White House, particularly
in foreign affairs.
. . . 'Honeymoon' Over?
There is a public warmth toward the
new President, even among conservatives
- such as the older group who still
haven't got used to having a convertible-
driving young Democratic President right
in their midst at Palm Beach country clubs and elsewhere.
The attitude is: "Well, anyway, Kennedy is trying. He isn't waiting for something to happen. He's working to make
it happen. He deserves every chance."
If there is as much of that sentiment
nationally as I have noticed recently in
New York State and even in conservative
areas of South and mid-South, it would
appear questionable strategy indeed for
an opposition leader to undertake a series of attacks now.
A review of world and national affairs since December through the keen
mind of Richard Nixon can be useful and welcome.
It would be a mistake, however, to
conclude that the public's "honeymoon"
with John F. Kennedy himself is over
after five months. People aren't talking that way.
. . . Time Runs Out
The howls from Havana attested to a
clear hit for the State Department's
pamphlet on Cuba. The document tells
the Cuban people that their revolution is
phony and that the U.S. is their friend
and will support a free government there -when there is one.
. . defends
Fidel Castro's Communist dictatorship reacted,
appropriately enough in the manner of Moscow.
The Red-controlled press (Cuba has had nothing else
for many months) yelled
"lies" and "defamation,"
but without permitting the Cuban people to read what
the shouting was all about.
There was other significant news from
Cuba this week:
(1) Firing squads shot two more anti-
Castro Cubans, bringing to 601 the number executed since Castro took over Jan.
(2) The Castro government acknowledged that anti-Castro rebels had opened
a "second front" in the mountains of
Oriente Province. By themselves, the
rebels probably don't amount to much
against Castro's Communist - supplied
forces. But neither did Castro's against
Batista only two or three years ago. It
was a sign of growing opposition.
Wherever Cuban refugees gathered
in Miami and elsewhere this week,
there were expressions of hope, even
in the face of seemingly hopeless odds.
Castro's time would come.
. . . Can't Take a Joke
For the time being, at least, the John
Birch Society should be treated for what
it appears to be, a joke.
We are a nation of joiners. Pick yourself a target, announce an organization,
print yourself some membership cards
and you can always find people ready to sign up.
Now there is talk of investigating the
group whose leader has made some of the
most preposterous statements of all time
about some of the country's most honored men.
Until they do something more than
talk, which seems to be the society's
only offense to date, the most effective
treatment by the government or by
private citizens is to ignore them.
That's one thing no such organization
seems able to survive.
. . . Who's To Say?
The Jesuit magazine Civilta Cattolica
of Rome renews its demands for curbs
on press freedom. An article by Father
Giuseppe de Rosa decried the way newspapers cover crime and sex. He said the
public has the right to be informed and
the press the duty to inform it, but there are limits.
This may sound plausible enough. It is not, for a very simple reason. Everybody has his own idea of what limits there
should be, of what should be excluded.
Give one individual or group the right
to fix limits of its choosing and you open the way for others.
Father de Rosa said self-discipline by the press is of doubtful effectiveness. In
some cases, true. But censorship is not
the right cure, never has been and never will be.
. . . Honorarium
Handsome Washington lawyer Clark
Clifford, who represented President-elect
Kennedy in working out details of the
transition between the Eisenhower and Kennedy
administrations, landed a legal plum. General Electric retained him to deal
with claims from GE's anti-trust law conviction.
The announcement recalled a story told by
President Kennedy at a Washington dinner a few
days after the inauguration. Mr. Kennedy
said several had asked what Clark Clifford was going to get out of the administration for his services in the transition.
"I asked Clark that question, too,"
President Kennedy said with a grin.
"Clark said he didn't want anything for himself, not a thing-just print the name of his law firm on the back of the new one dollar bills."
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