Stooges and Fellow Travelers

Westbrook Pegler

Spartanburg Herald-Journal/November 6, 1940

New York, Nov. 5—The desperate attempt of the New Deal, at the last hour, to disown a long record of collaboration with the Muscovite conspirators against this nation is reminiscent of Adolf Hitler’s equally abrupt ripening of love for the bloody-handed brigand whom he had described a thousand times as the scum of the earth. From the president down to his obedient lackey, by name Robert Jackson, with the notable exception of Harold Ickes, the administration has taken well-timed political licks at old comrades, nor hesitated to use the Department of Justice for this sordid party purpose. Almost at the same time that President Roosevelt was discovering evidence of mutual interest on the part of the Republicans and the Communists’ New York paper Mr. Jackson made up his mind that the wife of Earl Browder must be deported to Russia for reasons which have long been known. The order could have been issued long ago or it could have been deferred until after the election, but with obvious purpose Mr. Jackson timed his action so as to prepare a background for the leader’s speech in Brooklyn.

Mr. Ickes hasn’t yet renounced his old Communist luncheon hosts of the Lawyer’s Guild and Newspaper Guild, but he is a frugal man who would not repudiate without a grim struggle two organizations which had treated him to the convention fried chicken, buckshot peas and sliced pineapple mayonnaise. Mrs. Roosevelt, however, made her political move some time ago when, to her comrades of the Newspaper Guild, in which she is a princess of privilege, neither eligible  for membership nor bound by the painful duty to strike and picket, she delivered a soft rebuke.

After all this time, after loading labor relations with stooges and fellow travelers and trading many favors with Browder’s bitter anti-American group the leaders suddenly realized that, in the new temper of the nation, they had become a liability. Thus the attempt to identify Browder with Wendell Willkie, of all men, and the drastic and personally brutal ruling against a woman of no known political importance whose husband once boasted that in a happier day “when these gentlemen thought they could use the suppose of the Communists, we became almost respectable.”

“Not quite respectable,” Browder said. “Almost. They knew us then. They knew almost everything about us.”

The leader and the sub-leaders of the New Deal had every opportunity to know not almost everything but all about the Communists, and it need not be doubted that they did. Mrs. Roosevelt took her knotting bag to their youth congresses. Gave the political aid and comfort before the Dies committee and, further to discredit this agency of the United States Congress in the performance of a hard and troublesome duty, selected a number of the youth to be her guests at the White House. Although the Newspaper Guild was crawling with Communists, Mrs. Roosevelt chose to resign from the D.A.R. in protest against a policy which was denied and never proved, but to remain a member of the guild and, moreover, to remain silent on the malicious and systematic harassment of American newspaper people by the Kremlin’s men. The W.P.A. in New York was infested with them to the constant distress of deserving Americans, and the Communists were encouraged to propagate their political infection across the whole land on screen and stage at the expense of the American people again with Mrs. Roosevelt’s warm personal and political consideration.

There is usually a little time lag between such changes of party line and the comprehension of their meaning by the public. With election so close it may be impossible to detect in time the true purpose of their sudden repudiation, which may be only a temporary parting by mutual consent to be followed by reunion later.

In the same hall in which President Roosevelt denounced the “unholy alliance” of radicals and reactionaries, there also appeared his ardent supporter Mr. Gererose Pope, the governor-general of Mussolini’s New York colony, heavy with honors from the hand that held the dagger, who now urged a third term for his American leader, to vigorous applause.

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