Gesture of Contempt
January 17, 1952 — Suffolk News-Herald

The Mossadegh Project | February 9, 2022                    

U.S. President Harry S. Truman (1884-1972)

Lead editorial in The Suffolk News-Herald (Suffolk, Virginia).

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Scandals? Truman Just Doesn’t Seem to Care

A FEW weeks ago President Truman jauntily promised “continued drastic action” in weeding out corrupt officials from the Internal Revenue Bureau, the Justice Department and other federal agencies.

He indicated at that time that he would set up some sort of commission to make independent Inquiry into these agencies. Judge Thomas Murphy of New York accepted leadership of this group, but later withdrew.

Thereupon Mr. Truman apparently changed his mind, too. He seems to have decided that matters were not so serious after all, and that he could “get by” without radical remedies. Confirmation of this shift came a short time back when the President told the country that any government clean-up would henceforth be directed by Attorney General McGrath. [James Howard McGrath]

THIS was a sharp slap in the face to all American citizens who are sincerely concerned over the present moral standards in their government. McGrath heads a department which itself has been found guilty of corrupt activity. How he can be expected to bring to a clean-up task the neccessary [sic] hard-headed detachment is a mystery understood only by Mr. Truman.

By this act the President has sought to minimize the scandles [sic] unearthed in his Administration. He has made it plain that he is not, in spite of all he claims, really interested in a thorough airing of suspected agencies.

This is a gesture of contempt for the American people. It means Mr. Truman is most concerned with a solution which will put the best facade on his Administration and his party. In other words, he wants a political rather than a moral solution.

THERE is just a chance that the President is sufficiently aware of the impact these scandals have made, to realize that such feeble clean-up tactics will not likely impress the electorate.

If that is true, its probable import is that Mr. Truman is genuinely tired of the presidency, doesn’t want to run again, and doesn’t much care what anybody thinks about how he handles the scandal issue.

This may not be a proper interpretation of the President’s action. But this much is certain: The designating of McGrath as chief of clean-up is farcical as an earnest move against corruption. Logically, it is the act of a man who is not concerned whether he ever gets another vote.


Related links:

So Much Eyewash! | The Pittsburgh Press, February 1, 1952

The People’s Faith Comes First | Spokane Daily Chronicle, Jan. 16, 1952

Time Has Come for Truman To Clean His House — Or Else (Dec. 10, 1951)

MOSSADEGH t-shirts — “If I sit silently, I have sinned”

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