NOVEMBER 8, 1945
NEW YORK, Wednesday—It seems to me that there are two interesting things to think about on this day after election. General O'Dwyer was elected Mayor of New York City by an overwhelming vote. People were evidently not at all affected by the attacks made on him. Does that mean skepticism on the part of the people as to the sources of those attacks, or does it mean indifference? If it means indifference, then the people of New York City—or of any other city that voted in a similar way—can thank themselves alone if their party machines, whether Democratic or Republican, proceed to give the city bad government. The price of good government is constant vigilance and the participation of a strong and influential people who want good government on an active basis.
Pittsburgh has a Democratic mayor, Philadelphia a Republican. Whether they are good or bad will depend very largely on what the people do. Indifference, apathy, unwillingness on the part of good people to go down into the arena and fight, will give any city or any country poor government.
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I think the vote for Mayor in New York City has weakened the Republican position in the State of New York, but the vote throughout the country everywhere was very light. It showed that people were not excited by this election. Those who voted did so because they felt it a serious business, but there was no excitement or enthusiasm even in New York City.
As one looks over the country, I think one can tell very little about the trend a year from now. People are waiting and watching. I should think that the members of the House of Representatives and those in the Senate coming up shortly for reelection would feel this sense of watchfulness on the part of the people. The great mass of the people has not yet decided what they want as a national and international program, but they are making up their minds; and when they know, I think those who are found wanting will be rapidly retired from public life.
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Mr. Molotov's speech to the Russian people yesterday seemed to me a very encouraging speech. It was sane and calm, and he reiterated his feeling that the three great Powers must work together. Of course, Russia will have atomic energy; so must all the other countries of the world, for that energy can be used for the good of mankind. The Russian people, who have given up so much in order to fight the war, must be encouraged by Mr. Molotov's assurance that their comfort and domestic progress would now go forward with added vigor.
We should want to know more about the countries with which we are going to have to live so closely. In answer to this need, the Harvard University Press is publishing the first volume in the New American Foreign Policy Library. This first book by Crane Brinton is called "The United States and Britain." The whole series is edited by Sumner Welles, assisted by Donald C. McKay, associate professor of history at Harvard, and the maps are prepared under the direction of Arthur H. Robinson. It should be a significant contribution to our understanding of the relationships between our country and the other countries of the world.