FEBRUARY 27, 1942
NEW YORK, Thursday—Yesterday was a rather leisurely day in Washington. A few friends came to lunch and, at 3:00 o'clock, I went down to the Library of Congress. There, the Pan-American Coffee Bureau, presented to the division in charge of records, the recordings of my Sunday night broadcasts.
Back at the White House, I had a most interesting talk with Mr. and Mrs. Edgar Snow, who have been back from China for about a year. Mrs. Snow is deeply interested in the Chinese Cooperative Movement, which receives help from all those interested in industry in China. They are making their own machines and gradually working away from the entirely handmade dproducts. It seems to be the best foundation on which to build a better standard of living for the people.
Later, a few people came to tea and to dinner. After dinner, I went to a meeting of the Washington Newspaper Guild. The bill which is called "The War Secrets Bill," came up for considerable discussion. Though I have never yet had an opportunity to read it in full, I hope it will be very clearly understood and carefully discussed before its final passage.
I took the night train to New York City and began my day with an hour and a half at the dentist. Then my aunt, Mrs. Stanley Mortimer, and three of my young cousins, whom I see rather rarely, lunched with me. It was a grand family reunion.
Several people came in during the afternoon, and I spoke in the evening at a meeting for the foreign born, sponsored by the Civilian Defense Volunteer Office, of which Mrs. Winthrop W. Aldrich is chairman.
I was interested to read in a little item this morning, that people may be asked to save their anti-freeze solutions from their cars when they drain them in the spring, since it will be impossible to buy solutions next year. By then, perhaps, both tires and oil will be so well rationed, that few people will use any vehicle except for absolutely necessary work. Even if we had to drain the water out of our cars every night, I imagine we could manage. I am not going to worry about anything so far away as next winter!
In some things, I think it will be wise for us not to look beyond the immediate needs. In others, I wish we could induce people to behave as though the war was going to last an indefinite period. They then would produce with increasing rapidity and forget the haunting fear of empty factories, closed down in the future. We would have more tanks, guns and planes, which are a prerequisite to the final ending of the war.